Bridging Unexpected Twists of Fate and Fancy with Humor
Author Barbara J. Shave finds wit and wisdom in Good Intentions Gone Bad!
Good Intentions Gone Bad! is the much anticipated second book by author, Barbara J. Shave. As in her first book, Barb takes a frank, forthright and often hilarious look at the weird and wonderful of everyday circumstances. Many of the senior-perspective articles in these books were previously published in British Columbia magazines.
The author invariably finds humour or wisdom in Good Intentions Gone Bad! She and her cover artist, Laila Campbell, encourage others to enjoy the game of life even when the rules change unexpectedly. Like the First Nation’s Haida people, Barb blames the Trickster Raven for those ironic twists of fate and fancy which cause unexpected changes in the best plans. Barb considers the collapsing stock market which now jeopardizes retirement incomes, for example, to be a classic raven trick on the entire have-it-all boomer generation. Having knees that played out just when she qualified for a senior ski pass was a less serious, but no less devilish irony.
Barbara Shave chooses to face both the expected and the unexpected challenges of her own aging and single circumstances with determination, independence, pluck and humour. In “Take-A-Chance,” she compares life to a train trip. Instead of just going along for the ride, forever wondering what might have been as that train races through unknown territory toward the terminal, Barb urges us to “Grab that stop cord and get off at every possible station along the way. If it proves to be a poor place, go on to the next! It’s life! Live it!”
She sits in the lobby of her nursing home these days, holding tightly to her doll of long ago, peering querulously at each who comes through the door. "Did you come to take me home?" the old woman asks. "I've been waiting a very long time."
Going home is her only certainty. She doesn't know where she is or where home might be. She can't name the one for whom she waits. Every morning she removes and boxes her family pictures and she packs her clothing in suitcases. Every night caregivers unpack those belongings and put them back in place.
She, who was always known for her smart clothing and good grooming, refused to change from her pajamas this day. She hasn't attended to her hair or teeth for some time, and she rejects staff assistance with these matters. "I'm as ready as I need to be! I'm only going home!"
Once she was a brilliant woman, a leader, an inspiration, a teacher, mother, sister, and daughter. Now she doesn't know if it is day or night, summer or winter, or the hour. She is lost in time. She no longer remembers how to use a telephone and can't concentrate on television or other diversions. None of that matters to her anyway. Her focus is the door. "I'm tired of waiting. I want to go home."
That waiting is the misery of dementia for Momma and for all who love her. I hope He comes soon to take her home.
Forward to Book
GOOD INTENTIONS GONE BAD! a thought- provoking fireplace read that will have you teary-eyed one minute and laughing out loud the next. (Dona Sturmanis — Noted Poet, Editor, Writing Instructor)
Kelowna author Barb Shave offers up another collection of essays and ancdotes in Good Intentions Gone Bad!
Each chapter is completely unexpected and each evokes a different emotion. Her plain-talking, day-to-day observances of people, places and events feel real — because they are. Shave has a “life’s like that” style — sometimes funny, sometimes sad, sometimes things that make you go “hmmm.” (T.J. Wallis, NORTH OF 50)
Good Intentions develops author's maturity as a writer
As her writing progresses[in her second book], so does her sense of humour, leading her into mini-adventures that are eclectic, winsome, and sometimes weird …. Barb is at her best when she focuses on the eccentricities of both her fellow travelers and herself …. Her stories concentrate on the fascination, the humour and the brilliant illuminating adventures that can happen in the most banal places. (Allen Hustad, KELOWNA DAILY COURIER)
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