Best of 2010, In My Opinion

Here I was, prepared to write my usual slice-of-life post.  I mean, what else can you do when the woman in front of you at the postal store tells the clerk, “No, my daughter moved upstairs after her boyfriend threatened to kill her.”

Eavesdropping.  For me, it’s a way of life.

But then, I noticed that my friend, Susan Johnston, at her excellent blog, The Urban Muse, had opted for a list of her top 10 posts in 2010.  What a great idea, I thought, deciding to do it.

Creative borrowing.  For me, it’s a way of life.

So, here are my top 10 posts for 2010:

1) Just for Today, I am Pat Robertson — Can’t help myself, I just love this one. Who knew how much fun it would be to be a zealot for a day?

2) Failing at Enlightenment Over and Over Again — Wondering why we have to learn the same hard lessons about the great value of life again and again.

3) How To Travel and Lose Your Mind — What’s worse than traveling with one man and one iPhone? Traveling with two men and two iPhones.

4) Unexpected Compliments in a Medical Setting — When you first fall in love, you never contemplate exchanging long glances from a hospital bed.

5) Just Stop Beating Me Up With Punctuation Marks — Ranting about exclamation mark and emoticon abuse.

6) The Day When Nothing Made Sense — The day my father died, I couldn’t do anything right — except opt for White Russians.

7) My Excuse is I Had a Fencing Accident — When life gives you a black eye, you need to come up with a glamorous reason for it.

8. I Just Lack a Flair for Drama, That’s All — I wouldn’t have chuted out of the JetBlue plane even if I could have. Sulking is far more expressive.

9) Shut Up, She Explained — Yes, yes, marriage is about compromise. But sometimes, it’s the other guy’s turn.

10) Not Everything Can Be Hurried — Maybe it’s unamerican to grieve too slowly. My dear, I don’t give a damn.

Happy new year to all!

(Copyright 2010 by Ruth Pennebaker)

12 comments… add one
  • Thanks for putting together this list. I look forward to going back and reading the ones I missed. Also, don’t forget that ultimate event of your life in 2010. No, not selling your house. Having Stephen Colbert sit down next to you in the New York theater!

  • ruthpennebaker Link
  • Ruth – I’ve loved each and every one of your posts. Can they all be my favorites? They are so real and beautifully said. Happy new year to you and here’s to many more prolific days!!

  • This is great! I had missed some of these, which is why i always love when bloggers do lists like this. Here’s to a great 2011!

  • I very much enjoyed revisiting this list.

    I admit to missing those accidentally sunny emoticon 8s now that you seem to have finally banished them. I am, nevertheless, v much looking forward to whatever Ruth has to offer in 2011.

    You modestly did not include in the 2010 roundup the post where you sell your latest book (much better than selling a house). I am eagerly awaiting my copy on 4 January 2011 (available, as they used to say, at all good booksellers).

    Happy New Year!

  • I’ve read some of these but not all of them. Looking forward to clicking through! Here’s to a happy and prosperous 2011, Ruth. Creative borrowing is a good habit to live by!

  • Ruth, I too, enjoyed revisiting the posts on your list. But by not having a niche, it must really be hard to narrow your writing down to just ten posts. You were brave indeed. If I’d had to make a top ten from your blog, I’d have had to list ten faves from each tag!

    But back to this post.
    Eavesdropping is also a way of life for me as well. But creative borrowing seems to go with it. What things I learn from eavesdropping are useless to me unless I carry forward and share it in some way. Eavesdropping and creative borrowing just go together like heart & soul, champagne & caviar or Ferrante & Teicher.
    But cell phones have made scurvious inroads into my way of life. Who wants to forcibly overhear loud, gratuitous one-sided conversations exploding at the next table? Spoils all the clandestine charm– plus you only get half the score. Now that the “Smoking or Non-smoking” option has been rousted from the throat of every maitre d’, I should like to hear “Cellular use or Non-cellular use” being uttered. I’ve a feeling the “Non-cellular use” section would be a desolate oasis, yet suitable for solitary patrons who opt to read whilst dining.

    Anyway, Happy New Year! Here’s to 2011. May it shed light on The Adventure of The Eavesdropper, or The Murderous Boyfriend.
    (Sorry, I’ve been watching a gift from Santa Claus, a boxed DVD set of the “Ellery Queen Mysteries” TV series.)

  • Ruth, thanks for the shout out! You’ve written so many interesting, poignant posts during 2010, it must have been tough to choose. Happy New Year!

  • I’m going to take the time to look back through your archives, Ruth for the posts I missed. But I was just talking with a friend the other day about how much I enjoy your blog and she agreed that you’re a master at writing about the human condition — in all its glory (and otherwise;). Happy New Year to you.

  • Thanks for this round-up of the best. With all my travels, I missed several but I’ll be sure to check ’em out.

  • I’m looking forward to plenty more posts in the coming year. (I will resist the urge to add an exclamation point or a smiley face)

  • Steve Link

    A good list, which includes my personal favorite (Shut up, She Explained), which became my favorite for the title alone.

    In re-reading the Day When Nothing Made Sense, I was reminded of my holiday descent into geneology. Having 1o days or more to spend in Irving, I knew I could spend only so much time holding Collins Grace, so my son and I made a day trip pilgrimmage to Collinsville and Whitesboro to find and visit the graves of maternal great-grandparents. Old cemeteries yield many names lost to the past. For example, my maternal grandmother’s twin siblings, brother and sister stillborn about 1900, named Elmer and Delmer. You are right; some people should not be permitted to name their children. And some names are best lost to the past.

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