My first job out of college, I worked at a small advertising/PR agency in Madison, Wisconsin, and I remember early on handing a piece of copy to the proprietor, Russ, with a note at the bottom saying I was proud of it. Russ, who was from rural Reedsburg, Wisconsin, wrote back, “Pride grows on the human heart like lard on a pig.”
In an ever-lasting way, Russ confounded my propensity as a native New Yorker to boast; since whatever I was back then, 21 or 22, I’ve been conflicted about even thinking of myself as proud of something I produced.
So I’ll say this about the personal essay I have in the Spring/Summer 2016 issue of Post Road Magazine: I’m pleased with how it finally reads and unabashedly proud to have work in an issue that includes Julia Strayer’s short story “The Goldfish” and Rhiannon Catherwood’s personal essay “Rear View” and Marianne Leone’s personal essay-review of the Mario Puzo novel The Fortunate Pilgrim.
I’m also grateful to the people who helped me with sections or whole drafts, going back to workshops at WMU, when I wrote down the bones as fiction.
And deep thanks to Pete Hausler for accepting the piece and to the other folks at Post Road who treated it so well.