Marion Franck

Don’t like the look of this storm

“You haven’t written about my illness,” my husband says. “That means it’s really affecting you.” He’s right. My silence in this column does mean his illness feels scary, as any heart ailment would. His illness is also complex and confusing. My heart is as troubled as his. Which leads me to an observation: getting older […]

July 13, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

When you’re fresh out of college, what next?

*Editor’s note: Marion is taking the week off. This column first ran in 2007 before our current economic recession. Two months ago I received an email that began, “I don’t know if you remember me, but I was a student you interviewed.” The email included details to refresh my memory, but I didn’t need them. […]

July 06, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

An update on one of my favorite interviews

When I asked if I could meet with Daisy again, I expected several things. First, I anticipated that she wouldn’t mind being the subject of another column. Second, I imagined that her life had continued on the trajectory I first wrote about in 2007 when she began working part-time for Yolo County. Finally, I knew […]

June 29, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Long group meetings are a lifestyle with me

* Editor’s note: Marion is taking the week off. This is a slightly revised column from 2008. She reports that since then, groups No. 2 and 4 have ended, but she joined two new groups: the Board of Yolo Hospice and a book group that reads whole books. At a 2008 Stanford commencement, Oprah Winfrey proclaimed […]

June 22, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

After graduation, keep up one school habit

In the midst of all the high-flying advice given to new graduates, I want to offer something small that I wish I had started sooner and continued longer. Taking notes. When you’re a student, note taking is a daily activity. In class you take notes on paper or computer; at home you take notes in […]

June 15, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

We debate what’s important in Davis’ history

* Editor’s note: Marion is taking the week off. This column first ran in 2007. When people labeled O.J. Simpson’s trial “the trial of the century,” I groaned. What about the Scopes trial, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, or Brown vs. the Board of Education? I may not study history, but I do know that you […]

June 08, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Today I write in praise of pausing

This is a column in praise of the pause. I’ve been pausing for things all my life, but I recently realized that some pauses ― not the traffic-signal type ― contain hidden wealth. The other day I was trying to remember who sang “If You Could Read My Mind.” I pictured the singer’s face and […]

June 01, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Looking at success rates in flying, swimming, love

There’s a photo from my wedding in a Davis backyard that brings a smile to the face of anyone who sees it. It was taken before the ceremony, as my future husband stood in the shadow of the house with his best man. The expression on Bob’s face, just before he takes his first step […]

May 25, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Why do we get along better on vacation?

Why do my husband and I get along better on vacation than we do at home? We’re semi-retired, so our daily lives are not stressful and we don’t face a lot of conflict. Even so, we like each other better when we’re far from home. “I’m going to figure it out this time,” I said […]

May 18, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

On Mother’s Day the heart opens to gains, losses

I’ve been thinking about Mother’s Day. Last night I had a new baby. This was my third child, a boy with a thin face, blond hair and blue eyes. My husband, who is Chinese-American, didn’t seem concerned about his appearance, and I was thrilled, never thinking about being in my 60s and the problems this […]

May 11, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

I wonder if all five senses are at work

At this late date in my life can my nose improve? This is an odd question, but it came up forcefully after a recent day of tourism when my husband and I visited wineries with a sommelier, that is, a highly-trained wine steward. Her name is Céline Viany and she qualified as a sommelier in […]

May 04, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Changing tastes mark our development

My women’s group has been meeting every week for 37 years. For a writer, this could have meant several lifetimes of things to write about, but all our discussions are private. I can, however, tell you our food story. Every group has one. First, a little background on the group. We came out of the […]

April 27, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Reliving the agony and ecstasy of spring

* Editor’s note: Marion is taking the day off. This column has been slightly revised since it first ran in April 1998. Sometimes spring is too much for me. It makes me think of my mother, a person who was very clear about her favorite things. Spring was her favorite season, just as blue was her […]

April 20, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Who among us deserves the label ‘creative’?

In college, my friends and I draped ourselves over dorm furniture and jawed about each other’s personalities and talents. Bobbie was good at math and science. Susan read fast and had a great memory. Marilyn was outgoing and Doreen was mysterious. I wanted “sexy” but had to settle for “not afraid to talk to new […]

April 13, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

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