“Men don’t write about themselves”

“Men don’t write about themselves,” Frank confided, “that’s something that women do. We’re just not any good at it”. I was sitting at the kitchen table of 80-year old Frank, who is the subject of my current Your Story Shared project. At the request of his son Bill, my client, I am digitally recording Frank’s stories and writing his memoir. On the one hand, I am glad for Frank’s opinion on this, it confirms my sense that there is a good market for my services. For all the do-it-yourself, fill-in-the-blank memoirs that children buy for their aging parents, it seems clear that the only way a memoir is going to get written is if someone like me does it. And this is because “Men don’t write about themselves”. Read more

“What’s My Life?”

“Let’s watch ‘What’s My Life?’” my grandmother, Regina Treitler, would say, wandering into the living room after dinner. She would turn on the RCA cabinet console TV and wait expectantly; that was the routine pretty much any evening. Now of course there was and has never been a program called “What’s My Life?”,  my grandmother had simply combined the names of two game shows that were popular at the time, “What’s My Line?” and “You Bet Your Life”. Sometimes when she turned on the TV it was the former, sometimes it was the latter; but even if it was neither, generally, she was still satisfied. Read more