Posted by: janetleigh | March 2, 2008

Memoir in a nutshell

[fade in laughter]

The other night while I wasn’t looking, Allen Taylor of World Class Poetry Blog tagged me to write a six-word memoir, no small feat I assure you. Here’s the one I rejected, although on some level it rings true:

Namesake destiny provides sequel to Psycho.

But those who know me best would agree this sounds about right:

Headliner: breech birth, embraced life headlong.

Apparently, the game is based on a bet presented by Ernest Hemingway that he could condense his life story into six words. Hemingway wrote: For Sale: baby shoes, never worn. Now this bet was discovered by Bookbabie who started the six-word memoir meme with these rules:

  1. Write your own six-word memoir.
  2. Post it on your blog and include a visual illustration if you’d like.
  3. Link to the person that tagged you in your post and to this original post if possible so we can track it as it travels across the blogosphere.
  4. Tag 5 more blogs with links.
  5. And don’t forget to leave a comment on the tagged blogs with an invitation to play!

Without further ado, I’m tagging: Bitterhermit, Sara, Mysoul, reluctantscribe, Soul Gaze

p.s. It was difficult to choose just 5 out of all my dear friends for this invitation so I didn’t tag anyone I thought was going through a particularly rough time in their life right now having trouble keeping up with their own blogs.  I don’t want anyone to feel under pressure to indulge me in this invitational exercise. [Is this worded better, Ario? ;>] I encourage any of my friends to come up with a 6-word memoir and post it on your own blog. Get in touch with me and I’ll provide a link to it from here..:)

p.p.s. Please don’t get any crazy ideas that I like to play tag. As a child I always ended up being “it” and I’m “Janet Leigh” now, okay?!! Just saying…:) heh heh


  1. I didn’t tag anyone I know who has other more important things going on in their lives right now.

    Do I seem such a lazy lay-about? I really must work on my image here…:)

    Challenge accepted. Will get on with it as soon as I’ve done the dishes, swept the flat, finished that translation that is due tomorrow morning, prepared my classes, entertained our guests who are coming for cake and coffee and generally kept my daughter busy and distracted from ransacking the place…

    *Toddles off to read Sunday newspaper with cup of coffee*

    [smacks forehead] Of course you have nothing better to do, Ario, then to play silly games. That’s why I chose you in the first place. [rolls eyes] Too bad I didn’t proof what I’d written before clicking the SEND button, eh? I sure could have done a better job expressing myself there, I admit. I meant to convey there are people who are going through some tough times right now and don’t have the energy, time, or mental acuity to participate in these kinds of challenges, Ario. I re-read what I wrote and started laughing over my lack of clarity and unintentional insult to others. All I can say is “So sorry to have offended you, Ario. You sure showed me what a work load you have to face. Please forgive me!” Or you can take Door # 3 which is “Spank me, already!” Have fun on your assignment, if you wish to participate..:)

  2. “Died condensing life into six words”
    I’ll start with my obit . . .
    Gimme a day. I’ll get there. This is like haiku or limericks; once you start, it’s hard to stop.
    Laughing, loving, thinking, writing – he lived.
    He lived life; it killed him.
    No watch; no time to kill.
    No watch; not time to die.
    This is so zen.
    He laughed, knowing he is Buhdda.

    Ohhhh, no fair, David! You’re spitting them out like machine gun fire! It took me hours to come up with my two – and hardly as clever or witty as yours! I hate you! Just kidding… I carry no hate in my heart. But I do envy your quick on the uptake, I do..:) Have fun!

  3. Namesake destiny provides sequel to Psycho.


    Thanks for making me laugh Janet.

    From the movie (one of my favorites): We all go a little mad sometimes. Haven’t you?

    The pleasure is all mine, Allen. Glad you got a kick out of it – and – you knew who/what I was referring to; the younger set probably doesn’t even know who Janet Leigh was or the movie. Of course, I would like to be pleasantly surprised. Perhaps the younger generation is hep to cult movie such as Psycho. hee hee

    BTW, this is the first time I’ve ever been tagged by anyone. I was shocked to see my name there with the others. Relieved it was something I could handle as far as brain power. And I rather enjoyed it! So, thank you for thinking I was up to the task. I’m usually not. And I got a kick out of your 6-word memoir…:)

    To answer your question: Have I gone a little mad sometimes, Allen? What does “sometimes” have to do with it!? ;>
    My sister is a mental health therapist and her favorite saying is, “We’re all a little crazy! Some just show it more than others.”

  4. I hate you! Just kidding… I carry no hate in my heart. But I do envy your quick on the uptake, I do..:) Have fun!
    OUCH! Seriously, how can you hold any hate in your heart if you express it? Express meaning to externalize . . . Actually a semi-successful tactic I engage for use against rage . . . that and drugs (Benadryl is the best; my shrink came up with this answer, believe it or not. Turns out my fits of rage are linked with hystamine reaction . . .)
    Seriously, though, Janet, you have no cause to envy anyone for talent. I think sometimes I traded soul for prolificity and fecundity. But I have fun. Please, do admire me! But keep yourself free of envy. I admire you – and many, many others here in the blogosphere.
    Peace & Blessings!

    Oh, dear David. I’m sorry I gave you an OUCH! I would never intentionally cause you to wince over my words, but truth be told, we differ somewhat as far as the harm caused by a mere word said without the full impact of its emotion behind it. In order for the word “hate” to have any negative energy towards anyone coming from my mouth, it would require full force embodiment of deep hatred attached to it. I don’t carry hate or any energy of hate towards anyone. I did once. The power it held over me and the poison it introduced into my psyche was slain years ago and I haven’t experienced that emotion since. Not even towards our present “enemies” or I should say our enemies du jour, according to our dysfunctional seat of power. I pray for people who wish to do me or others harm. I don’t mean to wax philosophical on you, but I feel I should explain that many times, to my fault, I use words I don’t really mean. I have trouble word-finding so I know I use words inappropriately at times. It’s the cognitive deficit I least admire. And envy is the wrong word because I don’t “envy” you, or anyone else for that matter. I don’t covet things that belong to others. But if you were to ask me for one word that has meaning and emotion behind it, it would be “jealousy”. In the past I’ve been jealous of my step-daughter over the attention my husband gives her; probably because she’s manipulative and plays her father for a fool. She knows I see right through her so she pushes that button often. Bleh. So with all this said, don’t worry. I shall admire you! Profusely, at times..:)

  5. I’ll take the Spank Me door if you don’t mind :) You still wearing them asbestos panties….?

    Yes, yes, I’m getting on with the assignment you have set Miss…

    Hope you’ve had a good weekend!

    Aha! I thought you’d take Door # 3 because I’m not wearing asbestos today. As a matter of fact, I’m wearing kevlar panties because today I fence. En garde!

    Hee hee. You’re so much fun, Ario. And I hope you had a good weekend, too, and for tomorrow I wish you a perfect day…:)

  6. It seems like Tag season ;). I prefer a word game tag more than the tags about stuff like “last person you slept with to or what are you wearing” :P.

    Hmm.. This exercise felt like I sat under the Bodhi Tree. First I couldnt find anything to say about my life, then I felt I couldnt put all that I found in 6 words.. So I guess I will play Word Math- Permutations and Combinations. Hopefully, something will turn out to be True.:P

  7. neat idea. may i try? hope all is well.

    Yes, of course, Scott! Can’t wait to read what you come up with..:) BTW, I’m glad you stopped by because it reminded me that I hadn’t gotten back to you like I thought I had. I’m really sorry. What I was going to tell you is “the” poem you wanted me to look at is very good, but I suggest changing the word “tickle” because it doesn’t fit the general tone of your poem..:) That’s it, in a nutshell, so to speak. ;> But..yes, please write your 6-word memoir meme and then post it on your blog and I’ll link to it. Thanks!

  8. Wow! This is going to be hard but I’ll do it. :)

  9. Symphony:

    small voice
    calls me


  10. Hi there Janetleigh Thank you for your lovely comments when you visited my site!
    You commented about me writing with passion and clarity, well by looking at your site, I’d say you also have this quality about you. I look forward to coming regularly to visit your site.

  11. LOL at the Spank Me comment. Thanks for the laughs. I needed it.

  12. i like this little exercise… i did it too a while back…

    how about…

    “hey, you wanna take a shower???”

  13. This took me a while and all I can feel and think now is this:

    “Life is worth living with Love”

    Amanda! Please forgive me for replying so late after the fact. Your 6-word memoir is perfect!! It is definitely you – beautiful love-filled heart and soul! Thank you so much for playing tag with me. You’re a great sport, really. I generally don’t like tagging, but this one was a fun one to do for me, so I hope it wasn’t too bad for you as well. I’ll be coming by soon, Amanda. I’m having a devil of a time trying to catch up with everyone. I sure hope you understand I’ve been under a black cloud lately but thank God I know the sun is shining somewhere else in the world, even when I can’t see it. Hope all is well in your world…:) {{{hugs}}}

  14. It helps to have an incredibly short . . . attention span!
    Curiosity drove him to the edge.
    He jumped, knowing the parachute . . .
    Without family, he could have thrived.
    Time grew short; he grew wide.
    Have a super day!

  15. This is what I came up with after “too much thinking”.. I am not going to tag anyone. The reason being-spring break and a series of festivals coming through, keeping me busy with my job(housewife), I feel I wouldnt do justice to people who leave their thoughts and reactions.. so Here goes my Memoir in a Nutshell

    “Smiling, watching, while holding chaos within.”

    Your 6-word memoir is a thoughtful one, mysoul..:) I think you captured a side of your essence quite well here, although the word “chaos” took me off guard as I perceive you to be very serene..:) Thanks for playing tag, mysoul, and I promise I won’t tag you again in the future. I, myself, have never been tagged before (for which I’m grateful :) as deadlines and pressures are something I’m supposed to avoid..:) Although I must say this is the kind of tag I prefer, if I get any at all. Hope all is going well for you and yours! :)

  16. […] in a Nutshell I got tagged my Poet Friend Janet.   I am supposed to write out a Memoir of my life with just six words.. Oh Boy! did I sit […]

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