Winter essayists ponder how things might have been different if they had a second chance.
Hindsight, as they say, is 20-20—or is it? In this year’s winter essay contest, East Bay writers think back on a pivotal or inconsequential decision to explore what they could have or should have done differently if given a second chance.
The essays are funny and lighthearted, touching and dramatic, philosophical and contrite. They follow the authors’ journey through careers, relationships, deaths, elementary school, high school, and resettlement. The pieces are populated with a plucky graduate student, a sorrowful son, a regretful mother, an awkward teen, a tomboy pupil, a clueless mom, and someone starting over. Settle in for a nice winter’s read.
Congratulation to the winning essayists—Julie Anderson, Naneen Karraker, Maureen Ellen O’Leary, Rosie Sorenson, Wendy Bomberg, Diane K. Quimby, and Robert Menzimer. Thanks also to the many other fine East Bay writers who submitted essays for the winter contest. The Monthly also does a summer essay contest.
Speak Chinese and Juggle For Me
Recalling an unexpected encounter with Sergey Brin. By Julie Anderson
Running in Floppy Sandals
A mother longs to have reined in a reckless part of herself. By Naneen Karraker
Would saying yes have made any difference? By Maureen Ellen O’Leary
Billy and Me
Rooting for a match-up against Bearcat Weaver. By Rosie Sorenson
What I Learned
A play date crumbles in a Church’s Chicken parking lot. By Wendy Bomberg
She finds what it takes to start over. By Diane K. Quimby
The Beds We Make
Sometimes there is no doing something over. By Robert Menzimer