In class this morning, we discussed a story that had a reference to Spam. One of the guys in my class, who is an international student, raised his hand and asked what it was. And for a second, we were all stumped.

How do you explain Spam? (I’m talking the food here, not the email annoyance.) Various efforts were made, such as: “It’s meat, in a can,” “kind of like hot dogs” “some people fry it up on sandwiches” and, my personal favorite, “it’s really big in Hawaii.” But none of us could really do it justice. It’s like trying to explain Peeps, or North Carolina barbeque. You just have to experience it to understand.

Other random comments from class this morning: “You know, in this story, I just think it would be better if the monkey in the suit took her on some sort of journey, or something,” and “The fact that this first line mentions the f-word and being naked, that really caught my attention.”


I love teaching creative writing. I really, really do. And I don’t think I say that enough.

have a good day everyone!