To my husband, Ross: Thanks for making sure that neither the cat nor I starved to death. On an unrelated note, thanks also for making sure the bridges of Maryland don’t fall down.
To the English Departments of Cornell, Brandeis, UMass, NYU, U of Virginia, U of Chicago, Penn State, UConn, Urbana-Champaign: Thank you for your rejection. The English Department at GWU is awesome. You, clearly, are less so. Thanks for helping me dodge a bullet there.
To my friends on Facebook: Thanks for responding to even my most narcissistic, whiny, and/or needy status updates. Put another way, thank you for responding to my status updates.
To Portland: I think I’m speaking for everyone when I say thanks for allowing me to be the girl who talks about how her hometown “is, like, waaaaay better than this place.” Because everybody loves that girl.
To Don, the man I sit next to on the MARC train almost every morning: Thanks for making room for me. I hope the USC basketball team does well.
To my cat, Creature: Thank you for whining, freaking out, attacking my leg, and generally carrying on while I was trying to write this, and all other, books/papers/articles/emails/shopping lists. Although you make me crazy, unbroken stints of focused writing make me more so.
To Scott, another frequenter of the MARC system: Most flamboyant men are delightful. You’re mostly loud and obnoxious. Thanks for crushing stereotypes.
To my third grade rival, Christopher C: Thanks for nothing. I still despise you for building a better model of a California mission than I did. I also despise your sister for narrowly beating me in the school spelling bee. A plague o’er both your houses.
To Kelly Sirles and Chris McDonald: Thanks for being my Portland fellows in this crazy world of English. Chances are extremely poor that more than one of us will be successful and here I am already publishing a book, so, you know. Good luck with that.
Dear Ira Glass: Thanks for everything. I couldn’t have done it without you.