This Week’s Alamedan: Laurie Wagner

lauriewagnerLived in Alameda: Since 1995
Age: 47
Originally from: Los Angeles
Occupation: Writer (published books on marriage and motherhood) and writing teacher (teaches at Writers.com and “Wild Writing” out of her home)
Family: Husband, Mark Wagner, artist; Children, Ruby, 12, and Zoe, 10
Activities: Racquetball, speed walking with girlfriends, “Tiki at Tiki

Why Alameda?
We were living across the High Street bridge in the Vulcan Foundry, which had been turned into artist studios. We’d cross the bridge to Alameda to shop and to run. We loved the trees here, how they changed seasons so beautifully. When I got pregnant in 1994 we knew we had to move because the parking lot where we lived was littered with needles and condoms from the local nightlife. One day my husband told me that he’d found us a house in Alameda. We rented it for a few years and then we bought it.

Like best about Alameda?
I like being a member of the Farmstead wine club because I don’t know much about wine and so I feel like a little connoisseur when I pick up my monthly allotment. I like Penny the dressmaker because she turns things around really fast and she’s nice, a little like a mother. I like Nick and his crew at Books Inc. because they all read and their selection of books is really interesting. I like that we have real friends here, people who will take our kids if we want to go on an overnight and who take our dog when we go out of town.

Would like to change about Alameda?
I’d like to see more trees on streets like Lincoln. I’d add more groovy places to buy clothes. Whole Foods.

Word to the wise
If you’re considering remodeling your home, make sure you have an appetite for lots of beans and rice, which you will be eating for a long time, at least until you pay back your loans.