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Karstin Painter


I am a Christmas baby. Well, not technically. Technically, I was born one week before Christmas. I have plenty to say about this. I can justify the title by pointing out that all of the malls have Santa decorations out by October 25. The fact that I arrived one week early doesn't invalidate my Christmas status. There isn't any glory involved in being a Christmas baby. You still only get one gift for two holidays because people just can't handle two celebrations at once. There is a reason that no one ever remembers how he spent New Year's Eve. It's too close to Christmas. People go haywire.

I believe that missing any single NHL Western Conference playoff game should be punishable by jail time, serious jail time. VCRs may be used in an emergency. I prefer the term "quirky" to "irrational." I think the first born of every American family should be named Ezra (Pound is optional) … sort of like the Rumplestiltskin thing, only without the nasty little troll. (No comments relating Ezra to trolls, thank you.) My friend Ben once said the band Better Than Ezra should change their name to T.S. Eliot. I should have punched him for that, but I didn't. You can only take literary loyalty so far.

I have sworn love several times and meant it once. He wrestled, hiked, camped, and rock climbed. He was the kind of man who didn't need toilet paper because there were always plenty of leaves. I run only when things are chasing me. I like toilet paper. It resulted in an awkward friendship that I would gladly take over an awkward marriage. He taught me one thing: you can't love people inside of boxes. It is a really cliché lesson to have learned. The second lesson I learned on my own: all heartbreak involves a quart or so of cliché.

I have a B.A. in English from the University of Northern Colorado and am currently running a poetry workshop for battered women with Rita Kiefer. I plan to pursue an M.F.A. in Creative Writing, but I am having a hard time fighting the urge to become a "re-enActor" for shows like America's Most Wanted or The New Detectives. I'm still trying to figure out how to get paid to do what I love. I know it is possible since my friend Will is getting paid to sail and consume large amounts of alcohol. He calls it "canoodling." I call it inspiration. Maybe our differences in terminology account for the fact that he's getting paid and three months after graduation, I'm still unemployed. I grew up near Boulder, Colorado. If you know anything about Boulder, you know that being unemployed is ridiculously fashionable. That's me. Fashionable and starving.

You can contact Karstin at karstin@hotmail.com.

Karstin Painter's writing on Conversely

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She knows he's going to call. She knows what he'll say. She just doesn't know if she can turn him away.  Date: 12/1/00



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