From the category archives:



by the Coconut Girl on November 20, 2014

For twenty-five years, clients have hired me after their design budget spreadsheets were already singing on key. I’ve come in, most often as part of a team, to join the middle verse: designing what they’ve dreamed up to build. Eventually, the clients and I find ourselves standing in that realized dream. No matter how big [...]


Chicken Cutlet

by the Coconut Girl on November 5, 2014

Recently I taught my eight-year-old how to bread a chicken cutlet. As a thank-you, he accidentally showed me how to shoot gasoline out of a fuel pump like a firehose. To celebrate our personal development, we flicked crumbs across the dining room table, and talked in English lady voices. They are like Sundays to us, [...]

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The River

by the Coconut Girl on September 26, 2014

We went down to the river And into the river we’d dive Down to the river we’d ride –Bruce Springsteeen Vapor rose from the river just yards from where we stood. I saw it reflected in the surface first.  That’s how still the water was, like a mirror that had closed around our legs. My [...]



by the Coconut Girl on July 9, 2014

Along my route home last night, I saw two people standing alone by the side of the road. They’d pulled over to photograph a town-wide rainbow that followed a sudden thunderstorm.  I was inside a home-improvement store when the deluge hit. Rain pounded the metal roof pan overhead. For a moment, the other shopper in [...]

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My Writing Life

by the Coconut Girl on July 4, 2014

Blog hops are catching on like wildfire, and I’m so excited to participate in one thanks to my friend and fellow-blogger, Miller Murray Susen. What’s a blog hop? It’s when a group of bloggers post on a common topic in a loose sequence, and then refer readers to other participating bloggers they admire. For this [...]

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A Stop in the Hall

by the Coconut Girl on June 10, 2014

With so many worthy causes to devote one’s time to, there’s not much use campaigning for more interesting hallways by restaurant bathrooms. And yet, being someone who spends a lot of time in these spaces waiting for my children, I wonder: what if these corridors were beautiful? My son peeks around the restroom door on [...]


Yucky Lunch Box

by the Coconut Girl on May 12, 2014

The person who invented the vomit idiom, “take another look at lunch” knew what she was talking about. I’m willing to wager a pack of King Dongs that the phrase struck her, like a wave of nausea, as she emptied her kids’ lunch boxes at the end of the day. Perhaps she was decanting a [...]


Internet Security

by the Coconut Girl on May 1, 2014

I_smell_good_I_smell_so_so_good That’s what’s known as a fantastic website username. And this related password will get you an “Excellent” rating as you type it in: I_smell_so_so_so_good_always_n_not_just_4_today Note the password contains a capital and a number. Sadly, those examples are already taken. But this username may still be available: I_smell_really_good_I_smell_really_really_good It goes with this password: I_smell_really_really_really_good_I_do_4_real_realer_realist_reals Unfortunately, [...]


Walk the Line

by the Coconut Girl on April 21, 2014

We fell fifty feet into the water. Just before the terrifying plunge, a pair of vultures mocked my family and me: “You want a laughing place, eh? We’ll show YOU a laughing place!” Wet but alive at the bottom of the five-story drop, my family fell again. This time, into a grateful embrace. Around us, [...]


Fly Dome

by the Coconut Girl on March 20, 2014

In the kitchen cabinets to the right of the sink, tucked behind a teetering stack of mixing bowls, is a set of metal mesh fly domes. On a hot summer day, they’ll cover a platter of barbeque ribs, a basket of biscuits, and a stand of caramel cake. That’s important, because as soon as you [...]