September 18, 2022

My Mother & I Watching the Documentary "Dior and I"

Photo by the Author

My darling 91-year-old mother and I watched the afternoon movie presentation of “Dior and I” at The Maplewood at Strawberry Hill, where she’s now living. The documentary brings the viewer inside the storied world of the Christian Dior fashion house. With a behind-the-scenes view, we follow the newly-appointed creative director Raf Simons as he pulls together his first haute couture show in Paris. 

Mom and I sat holding hands, enraptured by the flick, the fashions, and the laudable teamwork of this esteemed house. Under Simon’s leadership, they had only eight weeks to create what turned out to be an exceptional and successful runway show.

After the film, with Mom on her walker, one of the aids quipped, “Betty, you win the award for ‘Best Dressed Resident‘ at The Maplewood!”


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Originally published by "The Shortform" on MEDIUM.

(150 words)






September 1, 2022

"I Lost My Glasses! HELP"

Photo by the Author

I kept playing in my mind the last time I saw them. Retracing my steps. I remember sitting over there. I was thinking I needed to wash the green eyeglass swatches.

Then backtracked what I had done at what hour and where I had been. Did they fall out of my purse when I was having tea and croissant at that French place? Or what about that other shop? I called both places and asked if anyone found a black case with tortoiseshell glasses. Both said no.

I was obsessed.

Finally, my husband found them while searching for an umbrella in the back of the car. My obsession had fallen inside a cloth bag with jumper cables. “Look what I found,” he said.

There was the black case with tortoiseshell glasses.

Just as I imagined. I embraced them tightly.

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*Originally published by "The Shortform" on MEDIUM / 100 Words



August 25, 2022

"Saying Goodbye to Hair Dye & Embracing the Gray: A History of My Hair"

Photo by Cristina Gottardi on Unsplash

It was the time of month when my gray roots began to show. Plus, I had to go to the dentist and could imagine what he would think when he looked down at the top of my head, which was practically in his face. 

“This babe really needs to get her roots done.”


But no more! The last time I had my hair dyed was February 2020; lockdown from Coronavirus began in March. Foregoing dye had been something I wanted to do in ten years anyway. While many ran to the hairdresser as soon as they could, I had come this far with growing out my real hair. So I decided to stay gray.

My hair has its own unique history.

But the real dye came after my son was born.

While I was still in nursing mode for my first born, my mother said, “Darling, your hair looks sort of mouse-y.”

Mouse-y? Could she have meant mousse-y? I hadn’t been able to wash my hair (let alone shower) for a few days and I did have a lot of mousse on that day.

“Mom, what do you mean?”

“Well, a lot of times after giving birth, a woman will start losing her hair. Other woman’s hair color changes and it looks, well, more brown. Ish. Like yours is getting,” said my mother.

“Maybe she’s right,” I thought in my exhausted state. Box-dye beckoned. I went to the local drugstore and searched for a box with the model wearing brown. But there were so many tones and color levels. When I brought one home and tried doing it myself, it looked horrible.

Result: Mom said she would treat me go to a hair dresser to “fix” it.

Ever since, I’ve been a girl who goes, religiously, to get my hair dyed by a real colorist.

.  .  .

It was enlightening to read "Ditched the Dye During Covid? Maybe Stay Gray" in The New York Times. "Lots of women had to confront their natural hair color when salons were closed of felt unsafe. Now many are sticking with it -- and joyfully."

For added encouragement, I still turn to the many gray-head groups on Instagram. Some of the hashtags are “graciously gray,” “okaywithgray,” and “gray-ciousme.” There are even ones where you can follow someone on their personal journey, like “nic_went_gray.” (And here, may I take a moment to say “gray” and “grey” is the same, depending on “gray” the more frequent in American English, whereas “grey” is more common in British English.)

I like not having to worry about booking my next appointment five weeks away. I'm no longer plagued with paranoia that my dentist is judging me. I've finally embraced my authentic self with grace and style. Amen.

Author’s Photo

Bonni Brodnick is the author of POUND RIDGE PAST, a contributor to HuffPost and Medium, and a former editorial staffer at Condé Nast Glamour and House & Garden. She has written scripts for Children’s Television Workshop, was a weekly newspaper columnist, and editor of two academic mags. Bonni is a member of Pound Ridge Authors Society and has a blog (bonnibrodnick.com). She is also a proud Stroke Survivor.


* Originally published in The Narrative Collection on MEDIUM.




August 22, 2022

Mom Said My Hair Looked "Mouse-y" (Did she mean "mousse-y"??)

 

In writing about hair coloring (stay tuned!), I remembered something ...

While I was still in nursing mode with my first born, my mother said, “Darling, your hair looks sort of mouse-y.” 

Mouse-y? Could she have meant mousse-y? I hadn’t been able to wash my hair (let alone shower) for a few days and I did have a lot of mousse on that day.

“Mom, what do you mean?”

“Well, a lot of times after giving birth, a woman will start losing her hair. Other woman’s hair color changes and it looks, well, more brown. Ish. Like yours is getting."

"Maybe she’s right,” I thought in my exhausted state. Box-dye beckoned. I went to the local drugstore and searched for a box with the model wearing light brown. When I brought it home and tried doing it myself, it looked horrible.

Result: Mom said she would treat me to go to a hairdresser to "fix" it.


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August 12, 2022

Featured in "The Pub" -- "Broadway’s Patti LuPone Blasts Etiquette No-No’s"


At a Broadway performance of Company, Patti LuPone recently cussed someone for not wearing their Covid mask properly.

“Put your mask over your nose. …That’s the rule. If you don’t want to follow the rule, get the f — out!” 


For a review of basic concert and theater etiquette, more instances of audience misbehavior (and great quotes from Patti), read my latest piece,

"Broadway’s Patti LuPone Blasts Etiquette No-No’s: 

A Word on Good Behavior for the Performing Arts"



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