The results are in! Thank you for everyone who responded to my survey about what types of stories you would like to read in upcoming blog posts. Here’s a run-down of your responses, from the most popular on.
- Personal Stories – 77%
- Philly Stories – 61%
- Writing Tips and Techniques – 61%
- News Stories – 55%
- Book Reviews – 55%
- Commentary on social narratives – 55%
- Stories about Julie’s cats – 33% (I was frankly surprised it was this high)
- Movie Reviews – 27%
- Guest blogger stories – 27%
I also had two write-in entries: Travel Stories (yes!) and Times You’ve Felt Like Liz Lemon (far too many – that might have to be a series).
Expect to see many interesting story musings coming up, especially with all of this amazing feedback! And without further ado, a personal story for your reading pleasure today.
Losing glasses and track of time is a sure sign that you’re having fun
When I was 12 or 13, my friend and I lost her uncle’s glasses in a lake. The day wasn’t otherwise that memorable. We swam, canoed, and explored. It was one of those amazing afternoons where you lose track of time. In those days, I was never concerned with sunscreen, and I never burned, so, instead of sunscreen marking the passage of time, we were shocked when it was suddenly time to go.
Now onto the main event - the disappearance of the glasses. My friend’s uncle took out a sailboat, and, beforehand, placed us teens in charge of his glasses, since we were in a canoe, a more stable vessel. You can guess how that decision panned out. There the glasses sat, folded neatly, until one of us accidentally knocked them over into the water. Once that happened, you would think that we would immediately dive into the water to look at them. On the contrary, it was as if we could only move in slow motion. My friend took off her shorts, folded them, gracefully dove into the lake, and searched. I did the same. Of course by that time, it was too late, and the glasses had sunk far down beneath the lake’s surface. We of course felt terrible, but after we paddled back to shore in shame, the family had a good laugh and said that they thought it was high time the uncle got a new pair of glasses anyways. Since this particular friend and I have been friends for 23 years, we’ve gotten teased good-naturedly about it over the years by the family, and for the life of us, we can’t fathom why we couldn’t react more quickly in the moment to search for them.
This past weekend, that same friend told me we were going to explore a secret lake in New Jersey. I was itching for a summer adventure, and the mention of a secret lake was enough to get me and two other friends out of bed early on a Sunday morning. After some scattered research, we found ourselves walking down a path through pine trees, and suddenly, out of nowhere, the lake appeared.
It was glorious. Rumor has it that this is actually a man-made lake (it used to be a gorge). The combination of sand and cool lake water was delightful. Just like when we were teenagers, we spent all day in the sun. A couple factors of course were different. We had carefully planned beforehand what we were going to bring for snacks, I applied sunscreen every couple hours and still got burnt, we had a dog with us to entertain, and we had cell phone reception.
It was a wonderful, very hot day. I read my book for a while on my towel and then wondered why I wasn’t in the lake. I eventually figured out a way to do both. Lake reading. It’s going to become a thing. I promise (#lakereading). You heard it at The Storyologist first.
It took a little while for that sense of ease to set in (yes, I was checking my phone for the first hour or so) and then, I forgot to. Time seemed to stand still, only marked by the occasional thought that I should apply more sunscreen (or simply jump back into the lake). We swam, read, and played in the lake for hours, and it wasn’t until we craved ice cream that we thought about leaving.
I went out for one last swim, diving way under the water and pretending I was a mermaid (don’t you do that when you swim as well?). As I was walking up the bank of the lake, I noticed that in my glorious mermaid dive, my sunglasses had fallen off.
My friends and I searched, in vain, for the $10 sunglasses and finally gave up. As we walked down that pine tree path, I smiled to myself. I did love those glasses, but once again, losing track of time and losing glasses seemed to be the winning combination to a fun, carefree day on the lake, and yes, it did make for a better story.
Now it’s your turn! Do you think that lake reading will catch on? Have you ever lost your glasses in a lake? I want to hear all of your stories.
Are you interested in writing your own personal story? Would you want to be part of my inaugural Philly Storyologist writing program? If so, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. It's going to be amazing!