Mothering Heights: The Miss List

By Christine Fugate.

When I was growing up, I didn’t have any famous female role models. Of course, I wanted to help people like my social worker mother, do everything perfectly like my Aunt Ona, and be on time and classy like my grandmother. As far as someone in the news, it just wasn’t happening.

Gloria Steinem spoke to my early feminist thoughts, but I didn’t have the disposition to be a revolutionary. Billie Jeanne kicked butt but I’m more “Glee” geek than sports jock. I was left with “Charlie’s Angels,” which gave me Kate Jackson, the intelligent beauty. But did I really want Charlie telling me what to do and who to shoot?


Then I saw the movie “Silkwood” written by Nora Ephron and Alice Arlen. The movie had such an impact on me that I marched to the hairdresser and demanded a Meryl Streep shag that looked absolutely dreadful. After reading an article about Nora Ephron, I became obsessed, reading “Heartburn” in one sitting. After that, I read and watched everything that came out of her mind. “Harry Met Sally” became my go-to movie. Even “Mixed Nuts” and “Hanging Up” entertained me all the way to “Julie, Julia.”

 When she passed away last month, I was so saddened. Her lists of what she will and won’t miss from her book, “I Remember Nothing”, circulated around the Internet, cheering me up every time they entered my mailbox.

They got me thinking about my own lists as I am trying to be present and  in the moment this summer. So here goes, my own list of the miss not and misses:


Things I won’t miss


Dirty dishes

Breast cancer

Cancer, everywhere

Bad pronoun usage

Rush Limbaugh


Commercials in movie theaters

Processed rubbery chicken

Traffic in Los Angeles

Broken exhaust pipes

Facial hair





Things I Will Miss

My family

Kissing my daughters’ cheeks

My friends

Latte at Zinc

Smell of fresh cut grass

Raw cookie dough

Laughing hard

Sasha the golden doodle

Boarding an airplane

A dark movie theater

George Clooney

Hot baths

Porcini risotto

A full moon

The sound of the ocean

Sunset at Main Beach



I wish Nora had been here longer to write about what it is like to be sick and face your mortality. Her writing though kept us laughing at the living.

So, as we enjoy the last month of summer, what’s on your list?


Christine can be reached at [email protected]

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