The Alphabet Julen: Y


When I bought my house, I immediately wanted to add color to all the walls. I painted the two main living areas on the first floor in shades of yellow - one a bold yellow called Deep Cowslip; the other almost a toasty golden brown called Apple Crisp. If you had told me when I was ten I'd have painted the walls in shades of yellow, I'd have been disbelieving and pitying. And yet both colors were lovely, warm, engaging, (and if necessary, easy to paint over!)

Yellow Submarine

When I was eight, Yellow Submarine was my favorite song in the whole world. Not long after, it was Yesterday. I must have started at the wrong end of the alphabet, for I never heard their Julia (that I can remember) until Smita played it for me at Smith.


Fling your arm out, roll it up, and catch it up again. Sometimes you have to ...um, acquire ... the project yoyo back from a certain coworker. What do you mean, you don't have a project yo-yo? Why ever not? It can occupy your hands to distract them from taking you off mute on conference calls, writing ill-advised emails, and of course, you can develop mad skills, as the kids say.

Yon Yonson (childhood spelling)

One of the classic childhood tunes - sung with a hugely fake scandihoovian accent: My name is Jon Jonsson, I come from Wisconsin. I work in the lumberyards there ...

Young Frankenstein

Mel Brooks' best movie - by a hair over Blazing Saddles and High Anxiety.


At 6 p.m. every December 24, my family gathers at the door, flings it open, and welcomes in Yul(e). My mother drops some Norwegian, my father jocularly urges "the Spirit" in. One of the cats darts in the open door, I start to shiver, and my brother flicks on the christmas lights. My great- grandmother invented the tradition to make sure her grandchildren always felt connected even if they weren't together.


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