Not much happened during my grade school years. I won a short-story writing contest in third grade (it was about a magic "rub me" lamp that the hero caressed and then wished for world peace). I was in a musical about Noah's ark, in which we wore jeans, colorful tees, and rainbow suspenders and clutched umbrellas and sang songs like "the Admirable Admiral" and "Man Messed Things Up" -- which featured the why-separate-of-church-from-state lyrics such as "man had all he needed to be happy on this earth: he had health, he had wealth, god had filled his cup. But man's heart grew cold, he grew too bold: man messed things up." And I was painfully shy until fifth grade, when I suddenly became painfully extroverted.
Junior high was horrible. High school was okay. Nothing fabulous, nothing traumatic. I was on the swim team (two years, never lettered), in drama (four years of black box theatre when all I wanted to do was star in Oliver), in Model United Nations (which meant going to conferences with high school students from all over the state, i.e., lots of beer and hotel damage), and in honor society (for, I think, one semester). I drove a Datsun 510, a.k.a. The Halloween Machine, upon which me and my friends all learned how to drive stick, and we all paid for gas by working at a movie theater.
I was a communications major at Mills College, where I lived through The Strike (when the Board voted to admit men and the student body shut the school down), the earthquake (the first time it ever occurred to me that I might die), and the Oakland hill fires (instructed to prepare for evacuation, which never happened, I freakishly packed nothing but underwear and my vintage purse collection). I supported myself by waiting tables, gallery sitting, deli-ing, and retailing at a cotton-only clothing store. I spent my junior year in Oxford, England, where I contracted a tragic case of adult chicken pox and got really plump on deep-fried sausages and chips, yay! After college, I moved to Los Angeles and stayed there for three years, going to cat shows, watching Jeopardy, and rubbing up against stars. I supported myself by working first at Starbucks, then a grunt job in advertising, then a grunt job in gaming.
Even though I very much do love LA, after a few years I started yearning for real city life, so in 1995 I moved back to San Francisco, where I spent many years amusing myself with various crafts, inventions, and my inbred cat, Marbles; puttering my way through a masters in creative writing at San Francisco State; and going completely Sidekick crazy. And then mid-2006 Marbles and I moved to Oakland to live with my boyfriend, Marco, a dog named Daisy (AKA Porkchop, AKA Piggy), and one angry, angry turtle.
Over the years, I've enjoyed enjoyed stints as "Director of Web Content," an advice columnist (MSN's Dr. Net, a.k.a. Dr. Neck), Managing Editor for Webmonkey (where I lasted for six boom-then-lean years until I finally got laid off), plus a fun year working for McSweeney's Publishing followed by a couple lean years freelancing, and now I'm working at a bank!