Chick Chat: Amusing Ourselves in an Alternate Universe

Ask us readers and writers what we do for fun, and we’ll probably tell you we…read. Or write. Or stream favorite shows, or cook, or take long walks, or hang with our families, friends and pets. But how do Not Us amuse ourselves in our free time? You may be surprised…

Lisa Q. Mathews

Not Me loves to surf. This may be a direct result of Regular Me playing the Beach Boys’ Endless Summer album a few too many times in high school. I grew up in a beach town, but on a section of the East Coast not exactly known for gnarly waves. Also, my savage tan is more of a boiled-lobster red and I am terrified of sharks and jellyfish. But Not Me would face off against any sea creature to ride the barrel. Alas, the closest I’ve gotten to being a surfer dudette is editing a couple of Baywatch book series in the 90s and watching The Ultimate Surfer on TV. Maybe I should try one of those indoor places. I’m sure Not Me will be awesome at it.


 Ellen Byron

Not Me divides my time between starring in Broadway musicals, going en pointe in ballet class, and twisting myself into shapes like a hatha yogi – did I get that right? You see, I’m terrible at yoga. I weeble, wobble, and I fall down. I also find doing anything for longer than thirty seconds – like holding a position or doing a relaxation exercise – excruciating, thanks to my ADD. I did study ballet and my mother was told I had “great potential” – except once again, that ADD. I couldn’t focus. As to starring in Broadway musicals, well… you get the idea. Okay, this is turning from Not Me to Unfulfilled Dreams Me. But hey, I’m living one dream – writing mysteries! Wait, that’s not Not Me, it’s Me. Wow, this is hard!


Vickie Fee

Apparently NOT ME has a lot in common with surfing NOT Lisa Q. Mathews and NOT Jennifer Chow, the hang glider. NOT ME fancies herself kiteboarding! This is unlikely since I’m not a strong swimmer, and I take Dramamine before I even get on an airplane. But I live a block from Lake Superior, and on windy days we enjoy watching people in wetsuits take to the waves. I’d never seen this sport before we moved here. Kiteboarders have their feet attached to something like a wakeboard and a body harness attached to a large kite. They mostly bounce along on the waves, but bigger gusts lift them at least eight or ten feet out of the water where they FLY through the air! This is so cool to watch and seems like it would be magical to experience. I guess even the braver NOT ME is a bit of a chicken, because flying on a kiteboard above the water looks fun, but also much safer than parachuting out of a plane!


Cynthia Kuhn

In an alternative universe, Not Me would be flipping houses. My partners would be in charge of renovating and cleaning up. I’d be the Design Person who gets to figure out how to the reconfigure the space, shop for flooring and counters and lights and tell other people how to install them, then find the perfect charming accents for the finished rooms. In every episode (apparently I have my own show), I’d also figure out how to repurpose something we took from the house into a meaningful new item (like floor planks into a wooden picture frame! or old tile into mosaic picture frame! though I hope I come up with more things than picture frames). 


Leslie Karst

NOT ME would be married to Paul McCartney and living on a horse ranch somewhere that looks like where the Cartwright family lived in Bonanza. Okay, so that was my dream as a ten-year-old, anyway.

Sixty-five-year-old NOT ME, on the other hand, would be an aging rock star, who spent her twenties through fifites playing New Wave rock and is now resting on her laurels–I mean, red high top tennis shoes. Oh, and although she’s not MARRIED to Sir Paul, they hang out together…riding horses.



Becky Clark

NOT ME spends her time tap dancing with Savion Glover for fun. But professionally, she’s working with the cast of Riverdance and holding her arms really stiff, which does not come naturally. [see above bit about dancing with loose-limbed Savion Glover]

But when she’s not burning up the boards, she’s cultivating a beautiful set of fingernails that curve majestically and never chip, so strong they could lift entire books, but they don’t because NOT ME’s nails don’t get all Braggy McBraggy. Her alter ego, you see, has hands reminiscent of an eight-year-old boy. Dirty, ragged, some bitten because she’s simply too lazy, er, busy to find an emery board. And don’t get NOT ME started on those cuticles! NOT ME is so embarrassed for her … but not enough to help her out.


Jennifer Chow

NOT ME is a singer-songwriter with perfect pitch, who creates entertaining and enlightening songs. When not on stage in front of thousands or luxuriating in exotic hotels, NOT ME goes hang gliding for amusement. She jumps off cliffs without a care and floats above the world. At home, she relaxes in her lush garden, which features winding cobblestone pathways, flower-laden trellises, and burbling fountains. Like a scene out of a fairy tale, butterflies flit in the air around her and celebrate NOT ME’s wonderful life.


Readers, is there anything you wish you could do, or a new hobby you’re considering? Let us know in your in the comments below!

21 thoughts on “Chick Chat: Amusing Ourselves in an Alternate Universe

  1. I have a friend who lives in the north of England. She sent me a picture once of a lovely thatched roof cottage with a beautiful English garden in front. She took me to see it when I visited her in 2018. I fell in love. And to make it even more appealing, there was a stellar ice cream stand just down the lane. I would love to have a little cottage like that, be able to work a garden like that and not kill all the plants. My husband calls me “Morticia”, because I don’t have good luck with plants at all. I would have a couple of cats, and my best friend and I would knit, bake and get into all kinds of adventures. WAIT!!!! I think I want to be a character in a cozy, that of course ends happily.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Not Me would do more camping and hiking on the weekends, and would be able to come back to her own little house tucked into the woods to sit around a stone fire place and read.

    Wait, that’s Used to be Me and I Wish it Was Me.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Not me would be more adventurous. Not be so afraid of falling that I could climb mountains. Zip line, skydiving, waterfall riding, all that happy horse s#^t.

    Liked by 2 people

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