It’s that time of year again when nature is perfuming my yard with a smell favored by me and a neighborhood cat who is fond of sleeping beneath this bush this time of year. Gardenia!

Going on the ride of her life

Classic car. ©iStockphoto/Zoediak

Classic car. ©iStockphoto/Zoediak

“What is your favorite comedy?” my hairdresser asked as we talked about movies. “Being There,” I said without so much as a pause naming the film based on the classic by Jerzy Kosinski. Add truth to the comedy/drama genre mix and I might as easily have said Riding in Cars With Boys. I liked it so much, I read the memoir on which it is based.

Based on her own experience, Beverly Donofrio’s memoir is both confessional and redemptive. Having made what seems, to her parents immediately and not long afterwards to Beverly, too, a bad decision, the youth finds herself pregnant at 17 and married to a drug addict barely able to provide a roof over their heads. Beverly, divorced with son in tow, is able to begin clawing her way hand over hand out of poverty when the doors of the prestigious Wesleyan University open to her at age 24.

On graduation Beverly packs herself and her son and moves to New York City where in 1988, according to a 2011 interview with Amye Archer in Hippocampus Magazine, she sells her memoir based on two memoir articles and a five-page proposal. Donofrio illuminates the path to life narrative good enough to find an audience saying, “Although one tries to tell the truth, in order to make a story readable, one must choose what is told and what is omitted, enforce a structure, a story arc, impose meaning on raw life.”


Want to raise a golden empire from scratch? Grab your creativity, combine it with dawn-to-after-dusk hard work under the tutelage of Sophia Amoruso in her new book #Girlboss.

Amoruso’s early beginnings start at her local thrift stores where she shopped for vintage she cleaned, styled, photographed, sold on Ebay, and shipped to buyers. I like the idea of vintage; my stunning personality and mother’s 1940s jacket netted me the first of several dates with a guy all the single girls drooled over at church in the 1980s. Having lived much of what is considered “vintage” these days (I’m a “sexy’-generian, remember?!), I don’t buy it. (I might make an exception and follow in Julia Roberts vintage Valentino footsteps if I ever am invited to the Oscars…) But enough folks did buy vintage to start Nasty Gal on its path to the more than $100 million online fashion retailer named 2012 Inc. Magazine “fastest growing retailer.”

How did the girl who once took a job checking IDs at an art school in order to get health insurance to get a hernia fixed escalate to mega-success? I don’t buy vintage, but I did buy the book. It’s worth the $26.95 (less online at Amazon) to discover the secrets of this rising fashion star’s route to online success!