Goof Sentiments: Sawyerhood from the West to the East

CLEVELAND 2011 (repost) – It’s hard to put into words when people ask (or tell) you to talk about your experiences and life in general.
Because what you’re asking about is magic.

I can tell you; I can show you by experiencing and sharing life with you, but it’s the individual way we perceive, think about and process the world around us that makes perspective “deep, magical or surreal”. Perhaps because I’m bipolar I; I don’t just see black and white; I’m captivated by the spectrum and everything in between. That being said,
This is for the geeks. Goof, dork, dweeb, ham … (insert nerd jargon ___  here.)

Growing up between Rochester, NY and California; dreaming, Disney and similar shenanigans were commonplace in our household.

As a hyperactive kid, there was always something to do: reading, movies, getting lost in the woods, climbing trees, catching alligator lizards at my Grandpa’s cabin in Grant’s Pass, OR and essentially anything that would move. Typical Sawyer-ish nonsense.

One of the best things about summer is time, or perhaps the absence of caring about it. Always a good time for reconnecting with old friends, family and some much-needed travel.

I remember Cape Cod, seafood, sand and surf…the smell of NO-AD 4SPF dark tanning oil (which I still use) and sun lotion in general.

Heading over to Sunday School in Dennis for a banana split or pistachio ice cream. Nom nom.

ice cream Dennis Massachusetts

Dennis, MA

Watching my family steam live lobster fresh from the pier (while us kids had french fries and chicken nuggets), and the smells wafting through the cottage as the adults imbibed over euchre, gin rummy and miscellaneous family card or board games (that quickly become a sort of heirloom).

Waking up in the morning to sunny-side up (and over-easy) eggs, hash browns and the fixins, climbing down the ladder that led to the kitchen and living room from the overhead loft, where my sister’s and my Harry Potter-ish twin beds lay adjacent.

I’m impartial to Backgammon, Scattergories and Scrabble –and naturally have become a bit of a Jekyll about winning. Okay, I’ll err on the side of modesty:

I don’t lose. If I do, it clearly must have been someone else’s fortuitous luck lol.

I remember those arcane trilobite creatures that were both fascinating and creepy: horseshoe crabs. Fish, slider turtles, barnacles and the sounds/muskiness of marine life and seashells. I could spend all day snorkeling and finding starfish; other random treasures.

ocean creature critter horseshoe crab beach Massachusetts


We would also frequent relatives in southern California where I was born, from Del Mar to Laguna Beach, and would roadtrip through the hills and wine country to visit grandparents in Fairfield, San Francisco and as far up as Oregon.

I remember the magic of looking for and seeing humpbacks breaching on the coast, and the whale watch in Cape Cod.

Traversing the Redwoods and wilderness near my Grandpa’s in Oregon; the solitude of cabins in Ontario and the 1000 Islands.

river nature outdoors Oregon wilderness


I remember tents and storytelling in front of the fire, marveling at the wildlife and the elusive, chilling call of the loon (or is it heron?). Canoeing/kayaking out to an island and grilling out fresh catch, s’mores, corn on the cob and brats.

Staying up all night telling scary stories, talking about girls and fighting the endless debate of USA versus Canada. (Coke’s better than Pepsi…Hockey sucks! Lol).

Listening to the pitter-patter of the rain and wind against the tents, seeing how far we could rock the hammock before it flipped –and trying to hold on. And of course, as mentioned in the last post, King of the Raft.

A sense of comfort came with the unfiltered, unknown wilderness: a sense of belonging and discovery that stays with you. Through the crossroads, turning points and valleys along the way, remember to remember.

Pretty cool thing about life: there’s always something or someone that can knock you out of your lens and show you something new, something crazy, something poignant.

We just have to be receptive and ready.

Media, movies and entertainment had their place too: They were reserved for the road and on flights. Though I’ll save that for another day/post, I’ll leave you with boyhood sentiments via Max Goof:


Sicky? Time for a Harry Potter Marathon

CLEVELAND – Okay, I’ll admit it: I’m such a hipogriff. Er, Harry Potter geek. In the same way I get down and nerdy about glasses, sunglasses, new tech platforms, sheet music, books or shoes (dang, I really am a dork) — few things lift my spirits like Dobby, Sirius Black, Luna Lovegood or Mad-Eye Moody (not to mention stellar casting, music, special effects and creative mastermind Chris Columbus).

In my last post I mentioned a run-in with freshly hot bacon grease and a frying pan (never again will I be half-awake, on the phone and trying to make breakfast). Fortunately, I was wearing long sleeves, but the resulting splotches of second-degree burns ended up blistering and lowering my immune system, compounding recent travels, work and general spring shenanigans. Perhaps I should also thank Cleveland torrential rain over the past month for its generous contributions…

And so, with the aid of a revised sleeping schedule, NyQuil nighttime (of course, CVS carded me. Friends and family continue to laugh it up: 25 going on 16; old soul, babyface…yada yada) and a much-needed reunion with cooking my own meals, I enjoyed some R&R with what has been lauded as the Wizard of Oz of this generation: Harry, Hogwarts and friends.

house elf Harry Potter Deathly Hallows
Dobby Only Meant to Maim or…Seriously Injure!

One of my favorite Facebook groups in college (other than B**ch, please…I’m from California! lol) was similarly irreverent: F**k this, I’m transferring to Hogwarts. So in the spirit of said irreverance, I set up fort on the couch and held my own book and movie marathon, freshening up on all the quirks, detours and seemingly minute details of the seven-part fantasy series. There’s no other way to describe Rowling’s genius but sublime.

Since childhood I’ve been obsessed with science fiction, fantasy and series like Encyclopedia Brown, Goosebumps, Ramona Quimby, SuperFudge, Warton and Morton, Stephen King and Dean Koontz, to name a few. Other favorites were the Phantom Tollbooth, EB White’s the Trumpet of the Swan, Sterling North’s Rascal and Dr.Seuss. Naturally, I’ve always loved Disney too, and am pretty sure I’ll still be watching and reading with my kids, grandkids one day. Some things are timeless. Reading is no exception, and is something inextricably bound to proper grammar, style and precision of language.

But back to Harry Potter. Here are a few delightful resources, as well as the new trailer for the final installment of the movie series due this summer, July 15th.

Harry Potter PR and Marketing books

J.K. Rowling official site

The Leaky Cauldron


The Literacy Company >>Reading, Literacy and Education Statistics