• Gas pump like that used by DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    Things That Suck

    The Man at the Gas Station

    I realized I was out of gas as I headed back from the doctor last week. I was out in the suburbs, too far from home to wait until I could go to my usual gas station, so I pulled into a random one on a side street. I got out, paid for my gas and waited for my tank to fill. In the interim, I washed my windshield. Behind me, a man whistled. I ignored it, mostly because I was alone and in a hurry to get back to my kids. Then I heard the same guy yelling, “hey you, excuse me, excuse me,” so I turned around. He…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley hugs daughter Claire in church

    “Are You Going To Die?”

    “Are you going to die?” Claire asked me.  Her voice was strained.  She sat next to me on the couch and gripped me like she was three years old. “What?  Of course not!” I said.  “I’m going to visit Aunt Lindsay and Uncle Sean and their new baby.  Babies can’t hurt anyone!” “I mean on the plane,” she said.  “Are you going to die on the plane?” “No,” I said, emphatically.  “Planes are really safe.  They are safer than cars, actually.  I’ll be fine.” She did not look convinced, and kept clutching me.  She probably asked me a half-dozen more times if I was going to die.  Each time I…

  • Children of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley look out over Rome Italy

    Brave or Stupid

    I noticed the woman behind me gazing at my kids.  Her own children, probably college kids, stood next to her, immersed in their own worlds.  She caught Claire’s eye.  “Are you excited to go to Rome?” she asked. “Yes!” Claire said.  “My mom says it’s going to take 9 hours to get there.  And when we get there it will be morning!” The woman beamed at Claire.  I’m sure she was remembering what it was like to travel with her kids when they were younger. We chatted for a bit.  She was from Tennessee.  I told her my kids were pretty good travelers, but this was still a big trip…

  • Image of concert like that of Fleetwood Mac concert attended by DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    New Perspectives

    Fleetwood Mac

    My dad loves music. Growing up, he had these massive speakers in our living room, and when my mom was out of the house, he’d crank them up so high that the floor would shake. He loves classic rock, and so I spent my childhood listening to the Rolling Stones, Creedence Clearwater Revival and the Eagles, among many others. As a kid, I didn’t fully appreciate that my dad was “cool” in this realm because, well, he was my dad. But I remember in the early days of my friendship with Shawn, he was impressed by my ability to sing along to every word of a number of classic rock…

  • Tommy Brimley playing hockey in alley by Brimley house

    Riding Bikes

    It’s been a long winter. I mean, we had a damn snow day just a few days before spring break this year. My kids have been trapped inside, driving each other crazy and having way too much screen time. My usual get-up-and-go persona has not been so excited this year to take them somewhere that’s winter-friendly, like the ice-skating rink, or Chuck E. Cheese. So now that the weather has finally turned these past few weeks, my kids have been living outside. Last week, after school one day, I got a text from a neighborhood mom asking if Claire could come on a bike ride with her daughter. I said…