A Compilation of her
Letters from the Editor
1998 through 2000
I sit here writing this editorial in
late October, having to imagine myself in January of 1999. So, the
winter holidays have come and gone (I hope we all had some great
moments), and I and many others will have taken some time to think about
what we want for ourselves in our lives in the new year. Ah, the joys of
a quarterly magazine. So much for being in the present!
Last weekend, I spent Friday night
and half of Saturday with my art director, CT, at her home twenty miles
north of Oakland, working on the final designs for this issue. I really
enjoy our time together. We sit in her office in front of her big
computer screen and go through each page’s design, trying various
touches until we’re both happy. It’s a creative process that is
totally satisfying. I love the views from the room we work in; we look
out over one of our Bay Area bridges and waterways.
We take turns choosing music. CT’s
cats join us for some love and attention, and use us for furniture as
they romp their way around the room. I pick up a CD jacket for a
classical album and read, “Concerto for the cello and the obese.”
What?! The obese?! Oops. The cello and the oboe. Been working too long.
Time to take another break! So we sit and sip our tea and talk about
what’s going on in our lives. Refreshed, we get back to the business
of designing the magazine. Thanks, CT, for all you bring to Radiance
and to me.
I love this issue. I am so pleased to
introduce you more fully to longtime size-acceptance activist Lynn
McAfee. You’ve heard her mentioned in Bill Fabrey’s column for
years. She’s represented fat folks, speaking for our cause nationwide,
at conferences and meetings with healthcare and obesity researchers. Our
well-being and health care, such as it is, would not be where it is
today without Lynn’s work. My hat is off to her. We can look forward
to more from Lynn in upcoming issues of Radiance.
And for fun: writer Jane Stern, the
food critic whose specialty is diner reviews, and cookbooks, cookbooks,
cookbooks! Don’t you just love ’em? I so enjoy looking through them,
taking in the scrumptious photos, finding out new ways to season or cook
or bake. May the recipes and reviews you find here spice up winter meals
for you and those with whom you share a table.
Coming up in Spring we’ll focus on
teens. Do you remember your own teens years? Do you have a teen at home?
Are you the aunt, friend, teacher, or neighbor of a teenaged girl? We
all need to hear these young voices, so full of potential. We need to
remember that each one of us, as we go about our daily life, is a role
model for the young women around us. And some of us need to heal from
our teen years or to rediscover the adventurous sense of possibility we
might have felt back then. Also in Spring, tales from biking
enthusiasts, personal essays, fiction, and fashion. Watch for us at the
end of March.
As we head into 1999, I want to
remind you that we need you,
dear readers, in many ways. First, please share
with others in your community. Help spread the word about our magazine,
and the ongoing support we provide. Bring
to your doctors and therapists and hair stylists and librarians and
invite them to subscribe for their clientele. Buy a gift subscription
for them if you can. Bring Radiance
to your local high school or junior high school libraries. Show a copy
to your local bookstores and large women’s boutiques and ask the
managers to order Radiance for their
customers (they can call us directly). Visit us online at www.radiancemagazine.com,
and tell others to check out our web site,
where they can read celebrity interviews, health articles,
personal essays, and support materials on raising children of substance.
Send a donation our way when you can.
If we mean something to you, if we are helping you, moving you, touching
you, or inspiring you to live more fully and with more self-love and
self-respect, send a thank you our way in the form of a financial
contribution or gift. We have no major backers (or minor backers). We
have no corporate sponsorship. Please do what you can.
Write to us, call or with feedback. Tell us how how we’ve helped and what you’d like to
see more of on our pages. Give us interview or story ideas. Remember, you
are our sponsors. You are our
backers. You help keep us
going and growing strong.
Now I want to tell you about some new
growth in my life. At the end of October, members of my family gathered
at my sister Amy’s (and Bill’s and Joe’s) new home for a reunion
or sorts. My parents came from Wisconsin, my brother flew out from
Colorado, and cousins drove over from San Francisco. One evening, my
brother Michael and sister-in-law Molly invited me to join them for a
long-running show, Beach Blanket
Babylon, in San Francisco’s Italian North Beach. I really wanted
to go, but I had my usual hesitations about where to park, the comfort
of the theater’s chairs, and the amount of walking (up how many
hills?!). I even found myself worrying about whether Michael and Molly
would be comfortable with my size.
That evening I dressed and drove over
the bridge to the theater. I parked right across the street and waited
in line for Michael and Molly to join me. From the moment they arrived,
we talked nonstop and had a great time. I felt seen, loved, and
appreciated. After the show we walked down the block to a delightful
Italian restaurant for a meal of pasta (with lots of garlic) and even
had a view of Coit Tower, a landmark in the city. Everything was
wonderful. We said our good-byes and I started home. As I drove down
Columbus, a main street in North Beach, I tried to take in everything
around me. I saw people dining at small candle-lit tables in funky
little second-story restaurants. There were people everywhere, walking,
laughing, and sight-seeing. Bookstores were open and full of customers,
and music drifted out of supper clubs. I was ecstatic. I felt totally
turned on to life and to the hustle and bustle of the city.
I felt alive in every cell of my
being. When I got home, I ran into the house and immediately called a
few friends and left messages: “We’re gonna start going out again on
Saturday nights. We’re going to the city. We’re going to eat in
small, rowdy little restaurants, see the sights, take in concerts and
shows. We’re gonna drive to nearby towns and explore. We’re not
gonna stay home anymore!”
My evening in the city helped me see
that my life had narrowed during the past few years. (Was it just me
getting older, coming to terms with being single again, or the physical
discomforts that sometimes slowed me down?) Well, now I’m up and out
again! I’m swimming at my local outdoor pool weeknights, and I’m
gonna play as often as I can! Thanks to Michael and Molly for
encouraging me. See what you started?
So fellow readers, what will this new
year bring to you? What will you give yourself? Remember that there is a whole person inside you wanting to feel alive. Tune in to her. Give
her the safety and the love she needs. And she will awaken you to some
delightfully wonderful new experiences.
With this, I welcome you to our Winter
Founder, Editor, Publisher ©