In my memoir Food and Loathing, I wrote about going to temple on the high holy days and seeing a particular woman who was always dressed to the nines. I compared her to Snow White’s evil stepmother, and my mother and I debated whether she had a healthy ego getting dolled up like that or if she suffered from low self-esteem like us and was compensating. After the book came out, people from our temple read it and knew exactly who I had written about and they’d whisper to me, it’s so-and-s0, right? I’d deny it, say it was a composite of the Woodbridge matrons. Of all the things I could regret writing in that motherfucking book, nothing troubles me as much as my portrayal of that temple lady. I saw her again today. She was as haute as ever. I avoided making eye contact as I do every year. I feel like an asshole because I made fun of her and she was an innocent bystander in my screed. It was an easy laugh. An easy mark. I wish I had handled it better. Of course, the laugh is finally on me since I’m still sitting here in temple on a day of renewal and hope feeling like a piece of shit in a four year old dress.
Do you regret anything you’ve written?
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