Submitting a 300 words or less abstract for a conference:
Me: "It will be easy to write this abstract, but getting it down to 300 words will be rough. I'm going to have to make some hard decisions."
Jamie (a psychologist): "It's going to be like Fizzy's Choice."
Me: [laughs] "Totally."
Mike (foreign research fellow): [stares blankly]
Jamie: "There was this movie, which I never saw, but it's about this woman who.... well, she..."
Me: "Actually, this is kind of a downer."
Jamie: "...she has to choose which one of her two children lives."
Me: "During the Holocaust."
Mike: [soberly] "Oh."
Jamie: "That was definitely a downer."
Me: "Nothing kills a conversation faster than the Holocaust."
Speaking of the Holocaust, I recently finished reading Sarah's Key for my book club. I read it quickly, but I felt it was a bit needlessly horrible. I feel like when a book makes you cry, it should be necessary and earned.