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I wouldn't be who I am without you: Carter

"There once was a boy named Milo who didn't know what to do with himself--not just sometimes, but always." 

- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth

The Phantom Tollbooth is one of the books that has defined my life, and continues to shape the way I think about stories and writing. I can credit Norton Juster for many things, among them: enhancing my vocabulary, teaching me to play with words, and encouraging me to see even the most mundane aspects of my life with excitement and curiosity. Milo's journey from mental stagnation to empowerment is both inspiring and instructive - a fable for the 21st century, whose essence could be captured by the phrase: seize the day!

Carter George introduced me to Milo on the Westport porch when I was just old enough to understand and still young enough to fall in love with someone for giving me a book (although that's probably still true). I last saw Carter at a farm in Portland, finally settled into love with Carol, and even before their son was a proverbial glimmer. I'm grateful for that memory and for everything else Carter gave me that he likely never knew. 

Carter, I have always loved and missed you. 

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