The ‘nostalgia’ category

The Quarantimes Week 32: These Girls Don’t Just Want to Have Fun

October 20th, 2020

A close friend told me that someone in her Brooklyn courtyard was blasting “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” the other morning: the Cyndi Lauper song that lifted up a certain generation of us in our volatile years with its subversive feminist manifesto. I remember being at a dance party in 7th grade — the year I went to a stuffy private school where no one liked me — and cutting loose with sheer glee to this song, simultaneously feeling like I finally belonged and not giving a shit.

I decided to put the song on our driving-to-school playlist, which is also stocked with such timeless goodies as “Don’t Worry Be Happy” and “Here Comes the Sun.”

My daughters dug the song. They asked for it on repeat. However, they had some commentary:

“Why just girls?”

“Does that include grownups?”

“I don’t just want to have fun.”

I asked, “What else do you like to do?”

Phoebe responded “Chores.”

YES. My child.

They do really want to have fun though. Here are some things they considered the height of fun this weekend, which happens to be the exact same list of things they fought over.

The wax from Babybel cheese

They don’t really care for the cheese, but they love the wax it comes wrapped in. They like to wad it up, name it, make fake voices for it, lead it through plots, smear it all over the hot dishwasher and floor, leave it on the counter, then fight over it when one lone wad of dirty cheese wax is found later on.

Ask me if they ever use their dollhouse.


Hours of silent concentration in front of the pellet stove, interspersed with vicious arguments over who put which marker cap in whose mouth and whose turn it is with the “best only good pink.”


We collected leaves to make these awesome mobiles. The leaf collecting was relatively calm. Many arguments ensued later on over the correct rainbow order of leaves, since there is no blue and the purple-red spectrum is pretty open to interpretation. 

6745A692-9431-41BB-8807-5DF0E4DC64CF 2

Day-of-the-week socks

Santa Claus, that asshole, gave my kids two sets of day-of-the-week socks for Christmas last year. But it wasn’t until this fall that my daughters realized they have socks for each day of the week. Unfortunately, at this point, half the socks are missing, and the letters are all mangled and hard to read. So every night when we pick out clothes for tomorrow, we go through a ritual of making the parents read out loud the day of every single sock, in an effort to find the right ones. We never find the right ones. If we do, it’s only one pair — and someone gets shafted. I am not sure whether to throw out all of the day-of-the-week socks or buy more.

Girls do want to have fun. And argue. And have adventures. And make art. And match our socks to the day of the week. And vote.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

What I’m reading


Having been to Machu Picchu and having experienced its magic, this story gave me the chills: Machu Picchu reopens for a single tourist who’s been stranded in Peru for seven months

An optimistic scenario for the US response to COVID-19 by the experts at McKinsey

Fascinating piece in the New Yorker about Why Facebook Can’t Fix Itself

What I’m watching:

If you haven’t watched the original video for “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” in 35 years I’ll leave this here for you. I guarantee you cannot watch this and not smile.


What I’m eating:

It's pot pie season!

It’s pot pie season!


And chicken soup season!

What I’m working on:

For Box:

3 ebooks I wrote for Confluent last quarter: 

  1. 5 Event Streaming Use Cases That Transform Business

  2. 5 Steps to Event Streaming: The Pivot from Projects to a Platform

  3. Organizing for Enterprise Event Streaming: The New Central Nervous System of Business

Share Button