Thursday, June 30, 2011

Momfia in the Hood

Caution: No fatness is mentioned in the following blog. The material contained therein is not directly related to fat issues or fat woman problems. (I'm saying it happens to skinny people, too.)  But I'm already digressing.

Warning: Bitchiness follows. May be extreme bitchiness.  (Just ask HIM, the man to whom I'm married.  HIM knows about the bitchiness.)  May be bad for your mental health to read this blog.  May cause warts, instantaneous blinding, gaseous pains, and sneezing.  No neighbors were harmed in the writing of this blog.

Okay. The mafia isn't dead. It's been replaced by the MOMfia. My daughter's preschool class's room mother was a card carrying, originating member. She carries her Gucci purse like it's got a .45 in it. She drives her Denali as if at any moment the police will start chasing her. I can vividly recall a moment in time where she was sitting in it at the preschool parking lot, waiting for other mommies to deliver envelopes of money for the gift cards she will be purchasing for the teacher and the aide. (Picture surreptitious women sneaking up to the Denali, and passing the envelope through the window, and maybe kissing her college class ring. Maybe she went to Brown, not Vassar.)
She'll make you an offer you can't refuse.  Fahgedaboddit.
In any case the room mother with the Denali and the Gucci purse doesn't hold a candle to my neighbors. I live in a cul-de-sac. (Cul-de-sac defined: the bottom of a pouch.  I swear, that's what it said in my dictionary.  Also the closed end of a pouch.  Also a blind alley or passageway.  I suppose Americans have made it their own.  In America, as far as I know, it means the dead end of a neighborhood street.)  Anyway, that's where I live.  It's fun.  The kids play in the court.  I get to avoid toys, bikes, and stuff when I drive in and out, and most of it doesn't belong to my family.  There's fireworks galore, and I don't just mean on the fourth of July.  It's Peyton Place without the cute, adorable and/or hunky actors making time with other characters.
This is also known as my street.
God help me.

So I'm not supposed to blog about my neighbors (and you have to know that I'm going to do it anyway) but there is one who drives me insane.  (Of course, there are a significant number of things and/or people that drive me insane or I wouldn't have anything to blog about.)  But uh-oh, I'm blogging about the forbidden thing.  Now I'm going to be in big trouble.

I think I can determine how this really originated.  Pre-mommyhood, I didn't realize that when I became a parent that I would have to be a parent to other people's children.  It's an unstated rule.  No one will tell you.  It just happens.  You gotta do it.  Like Nike.  Once you have a child, other children flock around, and then you have to be a surrogate parent.  Furthermore, you may not like those other children very much because their parents let them act like little buttwipes.  (Buttwipe being the best term I could come up with on the spur of the moment and least offensive in comparison to what I was really thinking.)  This is the basis of why I'm disliking the one particular neighbor.

This neighbor, who I've called names so often that my daughter has commented, "Mommy, are the cows home?" in reference to them, is the least likable person that I've ever had the displeasure to meet.  If I never meet this person again it will be too soon.  This person is a fervid believer of thou shall do unto others as I don't do unto others, but don't you dare bring that up because I will deny EVERYTHING!

Upon bottomless reflection and the longing to rant about the issue so that I may let it go, I came to some inferences.  Deep seated, psychological inferences.  It's my belief that I have deciphered this person's personal ten commandments. Seriously, this is how this person thinks.  (This should be fun.)

1.  Thou shall only apologize in one direction from you to myself.  I shall never apologize for that goes against my personal beliefs, no matter how wrongity-wrong-wrong I am.  (I'm not wrong.  You're just wrong for thinking it.)

2.  Thou shall believe in MY religion and not your crappy one that really doesn't count, except that you're not a pagan and I'm not so sure about that since you let your daughter dress as a witch one year for Halloween.  (Witches = badness, except for Sabrina, Samantha, and Glenda, but only if I'm in a benign mood.)

3.  Thou shall NOT direct my children not to be poorly behaved, even though I said you should, because my children will lie to me about what really happened and I will immediately take their side because they are ANGELs and you are scum, plus not of my religion. (See above.)  (Not of my religion = badness, like Charles Manson or Newt Gingrich.)

4.  Thou shall NOT mention all the favors you've done in the past for my family because no matter how many you've done, it doesn't equal the piddly amount I've done for you. Besides who's really counting?  (Keeping count = badness, kind of like any socioeconomical program that expects me to produce for a living.)
Diagram of dogly doobies. How can any canine possibly poop
that damn much?
5.  Thou shall ignore the dozens of cigarette butts that I toss willy-nilly about my property, your property, and everywhere I see fit to toss the buttiness.  I have complete rights to do as I see fit with the remnants of my cigs and you can do little about it.  (Complaining about my hygienic standards = badness, like 'How dare you judge me?')

6.  Thou shall ignore the fact that my dog wanders around freely and poops wherever he sees fit.  We cannot be bothered to watch where he poops, much less pick it up, as is stated by the laws of our city.  How dare you suggest that our dog be contained in a legal manner?  You are scum for suggesting that our dog be a dog. (Suggesting that we pick up our dog (gasp!) poop = badness, or 'It'll wash away in a few months, just don't step in it.') 
Why, yes, yes he does.  I think they feed him Ex-Lax.

7.  Thou shall ignore the fact that we drink alcohol constantly and leave the beer cans everywhere.  Thou shall ignore the fact that we throw them down the water drain as well because obviously our mamas never taught anything about civil conscience.  (I should really cross this one off because they're obviously just being 'green' and planning on using their empty beer cans for a gigantic beer can sculpture on their front lawn.  Silly me.)

8.  Thou shall ignore the fact that we leave all kinds of crap (not necessarily the dogly kind) on our yard in a way that reminds me of the hoarding show on TLC.  (Maybe I should cross this one off too because they could be planning their own reality show.  Who am I to impend their imminent stardom?)

9.  Thou shall never again mention anything that we've borrowed from you and never bothered to return or even discuss why we haven't returned it to you.  We (the royal we) may do as we please.  (This includes cash, DVDs, toys, and anything we many have 'borrowed.')  (Reminding us of stuff we borrowed = badness or 'You should have known better than to have loaned it to us.')

10.  Thou shall ignore the fact that I allow my offspring to run screaming into the night, every night, every single, solitary night, because since they are home-schooled and I allow them to 'sleep' in so that I may 'sleep' in.  So what if you and all the other neighbors have to get up early for various other reasons.  If you complain you are impeding my children's development into perennial laziness and sloth.  Stupid neighbor.  (Complaining about noise = badness or 'You should just sleep in, too.')

In conclusion, I have tried to be a good neighbor.  But my idea of 'good' only stretches only so far.  (I think that particular rubber band has snapped a long, long, long time ago.)  HIM has told me that I cannot post this blog.  It may be the one and only time that I'm going over HIM's head.  Basically, here's the one fingered salute for the not-so-stand up individuals that I'm discussing.  It ain't libel if it's true and here's a little primer on libel for my readers and for my least favorite neighbors:
How to prove libel - There are several ways a person must go about proving that libel has taken place. For example, in the United States, the person first must prove that the statement was false. Second, that person must prove that the statement caused harm. And, third, they must prove that the statement was made without adequate research into the truthfulness of the statement. These steps are for an ordinary citizen. In the case of a celebrity or public official trying to prove libel, they must prove the first three steps, and must (in the United States) prove the statement was made with the intent to do harm, or with reckless disregard for the truth. Usually specifically referred to as "proving malice". - Sexton, Kevin (2010). "Us political systems"
There I feel better.

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Origin of Zombies OR Why We Must Never Drive Past Graveyards at Night

So today we were driving along, my daughter and I, when we passed a graveyard and quite naturally the topic of zombies came up.  It's the kind of family that we have.  (You don't know what you're missing until you can speak on the assorted bizarre topics that my family can discuss ESPECIALLY with a 7 year old.  Godzilla, zombies, vampires, poison dart frogs, boy cooties, etc.)

Cressy informed me that my knowledge on zombies was sadly lacking.  She looked at me kind of like this.
No, she didn't really say that, but her expression said everything.
 Now I must sum it all up for the discerning reader.  Try to stay with me.  Zombie information is going to be disseminated.  Hopefully in a helpful fashion but probably not.  (You know in case we wake up tomorrow and zombies have taken over the world.  Wait.  Hasn't that already happened?  You recall the election of 2008?  Or I guess that was just me.)

First and most importantly, how to recognize a zombie.

 1.  I'm informed that all zombies have gray or white skin.

2.  Zombies have messy shirts.  All the blood and brain juice just pretty much make that shirt a nonstarter.  (Zombies have problems with job interviews and dating.)  And all that pink stuff on the zombie's shirt above is brain juice.  (Cressy's exact words, "Brain juice, Mommy.  Don't get it wrong."  There's probably a highly technical word for the same thing but I'm going with 'brain juice.')

3.  Zombies DO NOT wear shoes.  I don't know why.  Perhaps they didn't get the memo about the buy one get one free from Payless Shoe Stores.  Perhaps they have bunions.  It's a mystery.

4.  Zombies say, "Brains..." in a weird voice like they're hungry, or maybe because they're really GOP members who are trying to run for the 2012 election.  Whateveh.
Now for the real details that most people aren't really aware.

1.  Zombies DO live in graveyards.

What does this have to do with zombies living in graveyards?
Nothing but I felt compelled to taunt my sister's cat again.
(For those of you who don't read my blog regularly: bad readers. But do
go and read 'I Have NOT Yet Finished With My Sister's Cat OR How
I Continue to Taunt a Helpless (Hah!) Animal.')  (And no,
my sister's cat is not a zombie but it's still funny.)
2.  But Zombies have dens in graveyards.  I'm informed by my source that these dens are remarkably similar to the den under a large tree that the bunnies had in 'The Runaway Bunny.'  (For those of you without children and whose mommy's never read them books growing up, this is about a little boy bunny who dreams of running away from mommy bunny in various and exotic locales, but the moral of the story is that you can't ever really get away from mommy.  Story of our times.  Norman Bates learned it well.)

I can totally picture zombies in their dens.
 3. Zombies DO NOT like sour brains.  (The word 'sour' applies to literally everything my daughter does not like.  Broccoli, any green vegetable, mashed potatoes, anything she hasn't eaten before, and probably Justin Bieber.  So it's a pretty wide spread application.)  Zombies DO like milk and sugar on brains to make them not sour.  (So if we're invaded by zombies tomorrow, we can eliminate the supply of milk and sugar and zombies won't eat our brains.  Wow.  Problem solved.)

 4.  Zombies spread their 'curse' by eating people's brains and then that person becomes a zombie.  (If the person's brains were sour and milk and sugar were unavailable, there might be a loophole but I'm still checking with my source on that one.)  There are other theories, of course, like the one in the following clip (Haha.  Bob Hope was priceless)  (And yes, I managed to slam both political parties in the same blog.):

Most importantly, there are three ways to get zombies.  (Get being the word that Cressy, er, my source, used.) (Really urgent information in case of zombie apocalyptic world issues.)

1.  Slapping a zombie upside their head will often make them dizzy and then you can run away like a little bunny rabbit who just smoked a pipe full of crystal meth.

2.  Zombies may be kicked.  The preferred method of budding karate masters, the kick will instantaneously disembowel and deter any typical zombie.  (But if you run into other types of zombies you will probably be eaten alive.  You poor, sad, silly bastard.)

3.  The least known and most fascinating method is to hypnotize a zombie.  "Shut UP!" you say.  "Completely true," I say.  Carry that watch around that Grandpa left you instead of the $50,000 in cash that he left to the Old Soldier's Home and you might be able to save your ass from utter zombie annihilation.

There ya have it.  Everything everyone needs to know in a nutshell about the great zombie infestation.

P.S.  The other day I went to see my daughter's last day at gymnastics where they show us everything they've learned.  As I was sitting down I heard the instructor tell Cressy that, "Your mother doesn't make up all kinds of stories."  And naturally I interrupted with, "What was that?"  The instructor proceeded to tell me that Cressy was telling them that I made up stories and some other stuff that was clearly untrue (untrue to her skinny little emaciated butt).  So I frowned my fiercest frown and said, "Actually, I do make up stories for a living and she isn't lying."  Red faced, the little twat went on with the class.  Making up stories is not a great living but it's a lot of fun.  Probably better than teaching gymnastics to kids at the local rec center.  And that's what you get for making assumptions.  I hope a zombie gets her and her little skinny thighs, too. (But HIM just added that the zombie would starve to death on her insignificant, teensie weensie brain.  Poor zombie.)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Slug A Bug! Or Legitimate Ways to Hit Your Sibling

So when my sister and I were growing up we used to play this game.  The game was usually played while in the car.  The game commenced when one of us saw a white VW Beetle.  (The old classic style, of course, because the new one had not yet commenced its state of being.)  And yes, it had to be white.  (Them was the rules.)

Ye old putt putt car.  (While I was posting this picture, my daughter came
in to get my help with a craft project and nailed me.  Good thing she
doesn't know how to hit hard.)  (Dammit, she just did it again.) (And there's the third
time because I made the mistake of showing her the blog again.)
The lucky person to see the bug first got to smack the other one in the arm, shoulder, side, etc.  (I believe the accepted locale was the upper arm because Marquis of Queensberry rules did apply, especially when a parent was in the immediate vicinity.)  The winner got to hit the other one.  And parents couldn't complain.  (Well ours didn't.  It wasn't like we were punching each other in the face.)  So the object of the game was to be the one with the least amount of bruises on their arms at the end of a given trip.
Our mother, about to have an internal cranial implosion.
This was pretty much our entire trip to Disney Land in 1975.
All 800 miles of it.
And yes, that was actual smoke coming out of her head.
A few years ago, was it a few years?, VW starts with the commercials about Slug A Bug, but they didn't really call it that.

And isn't it funny that Stevie Wonder has the magical power to see the color of VW's?  But hey, they're not playing the game right.  They're hitting for EVERY single VW out there, every model.  That's a lot of VWs, ergo, that's a lot of hitting.  (I was trying to find the one where a guy thumped a baby but I didn't find that one.  Maybe VW was embarrassed even it if it was a teensy weensy little thump.)

So here are my Official rules for Slug a Bug.  (Modified for present day.)

1.  All VW Beetles count.  Old classic ones get two punches.  New Beetles get one.  Only classic or new Beetles.  No other VWs.  No Vanagons, Things, Jettas, etc, and especially no Routans.  (That's keeping the game pure.)

2.  Slug a Bug must be called when the hit is made.  (Cressy, our daughter, often will say, "Mommy, put your arm back here," while we're going about our daily business in a precursor to hitting me with a Slug a Bug.  She doesn't yet realize that she's warning me.  But she's getting better.  Last week when I reached back to Slug a Bug her, she quickly punched my arm first and yelled, "Slug a Bug!" getting the drop on me.  A true child of my loins.)

3.  No punch backs are allowed. 

4.  Only one punch per day per bug.  (That means that when we drive past the red one that lives around the corner it can only be used once in a 24 hour period.  Cressy doesn't always get this one because she'll forget that it was used before.  After all, she saw it first the second or third time we passed it in a day.  Power to the elementary school kid.)

5.  Any color of a Beetle is allowed.  Not just white ones.  (I seem to recall that there was also a game about white horses and involved pinching.  I believe my sister and I were vicious little beasts.)

6.  If a person is slugged and it is determined that a Beetle was not seen, the initial hitter gets twice hit back and harder.  (Vicious.  Little.  Beasts.  We.  Were.)

7.  VW Dealerships only count if they're accidental.  HIM has been known to deliberately drive by places he knows that there are Beetles.  (I don't want to think about the variation of the game that HIM and his sister played as children.  It was probably bloody and involved chainsaws and gas powered tools.  The Marquis of Queensberry rules were akin to a foreign language to them.)  (Upon consideration and decades of hearing stories about the road trips that HIM and his sister were dragged upon (HIM's exact phrase, 'dragged upon.') (Look parenthesis within parenthesis.  This could be bad.) I figure that there was an invisible shield in between the front seat of the family car and the back.  My FIL and MIL probably completely tuned HIM and HIM's sister out unless blood was being squirted over the backs of the seats.  I don't have photographs but HIM often complains about his sister breaking the camera at an early age.  Oh, what joyful times.)
My MIL and FIL on one of their infamous 'road trips.'
Apparently the back seat was where all the action
took place.

8.  If you own a Beetle then it can only be 'slug a bugged' once per 24 hour period by the first person who sees it and calls it.

9.  The driver of the car is not encouraged to play.  (Gee I wonder why.)  But stoplights are a free for all.

10.  Whining in the game is generally prohibited.  (Cressy compensates by saying, "Ah, man," in a saddened tone of voice as if she has just lost her best Barbie doll.)

11.  No knuckles.  (This is for HIM, who must have learned this particular torturous technique as a child.)  For everyone else, this means when slugging, you don't push out one of your knuckles in order to facilitate a better bruise.  (I know this makes HIM sound mean, but he really isn't.  Old habits die hard.)

12.  Only hands may be using for slugging.  No baseball bats, wrenches, iron skillets, or maces.  (There's a reason I'm adding this.  A very scary, sincere reason.)  Just in case someone gets any special ideas about Slug a Bug.

13.  No imaginary Beetles.  HIM knows what I'm talking about.  If HIM is the only one who sees the Beetle then there is a distinct possible that it wasn't really a Beetle.  (It was a 'ghost' Beetle.  Holy shades of What's Up, Doc? Batman.  That's only for Bogdanovich buffs.)

14.  Only actual, live, in person Beetles count.  Not pictures on say, a blog, or the TV, or in a magazine.

Here's the new New Beetle.  I think it looks like a squashed old New Beetle.
(Could have been a birth defect.)  Also if you're playing by Cressy's
rules you can now Slug a Bug someone.
Addendum (Cressy rules from her perspective):

1.  If I see it second, although you saw it first and called it, I shall say that I saw it first and Slug a Bug you.

2.  No one shall hit me harder although I have that option to tenderize your fleshly upper arm with impunity.

3.  If you see one, you shall ignore it and pretend you didn't see it first, so that I may see it and consequently call it on you or Daddy.  Mostly you, though.  (Apparently the fact that Daddy makes most of the money that buys my toys has rubbed off on me.)

4.  I can pretend that I didn't see that red one from around the corner for the third time today and use it again.  (The 24 hour rule only applies to you, Mommy.)

5.  I'm not really caring if you're driving when I see one, Mommy.  I want to Slug a Bug you and in an impertinent fashion.

6.  Whenever I see a Beetle, whether it's on TV, on the net, or say, on your blog, I'm going to Slug a Bug you.  Especially you Mommy.  Remember you started this game.

7.  I always win.  Sucker.

With that in mind, I think I'll go look on Amazon and see if they have 'What's Up, Doc?' on DVD.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Dance of the Fireflies OR Implications of Making Assumptions

Where to start.  Our seven year old daughter, Cressy, has been running amok lately.
Doesn't that look amok to you?  Looks amok to me.
Wait.  I need to go look up the word, 'amok.'  It means in a
murderously frenzied manner or a violently raging
fashion.  Guess that really isn't Cressy, unless
she was on crack or maybe on pixy stix.  By the way, amok
is in between the word, 'amoebula,' and 'amoldering,' both
of which I have no idea what they mean.  Maybe
I should read the dictionary.  What I should certainly do is
stop writing on this caption, which is getting
ridiculous.  (BTW, she's not really unhappy to
be standing on some poor bastard's grave, she was
just saying that she really wanted ice cream instead.)
There was the firefly incident.  We came home after dark and there were fireflies in the yard.  So Cressy said, "I want to catch them!"  Mommy and Daddy said, "We're tired."  Cressy said, "But I want to catch them!"  So I folded like a cheap suit in a cheaper dry cleaning joint and said, "Okay, for five minutes.  Cressy said, "I need a glass jar for them."  When she said that what she really meant was, "Mother, you shall procure an item for me that I shall incarcerate said insects within so that I may gloat over their little imprisoned bodies for the next several days until they perish."
The exact moment of firefly realization.  (If you ask Cressy
the fireflies were 'asking' to be captured and imprisoned.  Maybe
it was the way they were dressed, the hussies.)
Well, I didn't have a glass jar.  I already knew that I didn't have a glass jar.  But I had disposable bowls with lids.  No problem.  I didn't think the kid would catch one anyway.  After all, she runs like a transvestite in his first set of stiletto heels.  (She does.  I was going to get out the camcorder to show people but then I decided it might be crossing the line.  I don't want to offend any transvestites, after all.)  I really, seriously thought, 'Kid doesn't have a snowball's chance in hell of catching a firefly.'  Anyway, it took me 30 seconds to get the disposable plastic bowl with the lid and as I was going back outside, Cressy comes trotting up and said, "I got one."  She's got her hands clasped together and a smug look of triumph on her little face.  (She has kicked firefly butt and she knows it.)

I was like, "Naw, you didn't get one this quick."  (Unthinkable.  She can't catch a caterpillar, how was she going to catch a firefly with wings and a disposition for escape.)

Actual firefly security detail.
They're kind of like the Secret Service,
except without Obama.
It was THIRTY seconds, tops.  No exaggeration at all.  I was inside for a half a minute to get the container that I didn't really think I was going to use.  I had been thinking as I carried it back outside if I should put holes in the top and rapidly decided that since Cressy wasn't going to catch a firefly then I didn't need to put holes in the lid.  So I open the container up, thinking she got a mosquito or something equally icky in between her hands, and sure enough, it was a freaking FIREFLY.  She put it into the container.  (Actually it kind of fell into the container because when she had slapped her hands together, she hadn't left any space for the firefly.)

We both looked at it as it lay on the bottom of the container and I said, "Maybe we should let it go."  So the poor little smooshed thing could die in peace.  Poor little luminescent bastard.
Oh, it's time to steal lines from the classics.

Cressy looked at the sad, pitiful dying insect and I suspected that she knew that she had smooshed its little, green, glow-in-the-dark guts out.  She said, "Okay, Mommy," in a subdued sort of voice.  So we somberly let it out in the grass where it sat on a piece of grass and glowed for awhile.

Then Cressy went back into the yard to catch more.  She even called to the little fireflies like they were dogs.  "Here, firefly.  Here, firefly.  Come here, firefly."  She was getting annoyed that they wouldn't listen to her.  But I suspected that the word had gotten around.
You know what they say about gossip.
She came back a few minutes later, disgruntled because the fireflies weren't acting like friendly little puppies, and took a look in the grass for the one she'd smooshed.  "Oh, I can't see him anymore," she said blithely.  (The principle of 'Out of sight, out of mind' works well with her, except with Chuck E. Cheese, toy promises, and play dates with her BFF, Addie.)  "He must have flown away.  Bye!  Bye!  I'll see you tomorrow!"

Then we went inside because all of the fireflies had mysteriously vanished.

The moral of the story is: Don't make assumptions AND Don't squish fireflies.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

OH NO! I May Be Ranting! Again! Don't Tell HIM or My Sister!

Here is a recent review from a satisfied reader  (You know, the reviews I'm not supposed to look at, comment on, even glance at, or rant about in a demeaning manner.  Those reviews, yes.)  (But this was a happy review.  C.L. Bevill = Good writer.  Yea!  C.L. Bevill!  This review makes me want to spin through an alpine meadow singing, 'The hills are alive with the sound,' or something like that.  Maybe it makes me want to spin through an alpine meadow singing, 'You shook me all night long.'  Yes, that's more the picture I'm looking for.)  (And it reminds me that recently a mommy friend told me that her four year old daughter LOVES, LOVES, LOVES the movie, The Sound of Music, and has watched everyday for the last month.  Good movie but my brain would have rotted into mush.  When Cressy was that age we watched Wall-E for six weeks straight and my brains did turn into mush.  Seriously, even zombies weren't interested.)

I can totally picture Julie Andrews rocking out to AC/DC.

 Anyway, I think I was actually talking about a review.  So here it is:
So this is a good review.  This person liked Bubba and the Dead Woman and gave it five stars.  Thank you so much for the good words about Bubba!  (Yea!  Positive reviews rock!)  But what's with all the symbols?

HIM, the man to whom I am married, said it was because the person was using a Linux operating system and the translation was iffy.  (Funny story about the word, iffy, and the weather, but I'm digressing and in a very bad manner.  So I'll get back to that.)  (And a personal note to HIM, not everything in the world has to do with Linux operating systems and computer information systems.  Sorry, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, but it had to be said.)

Symbols.  Right.  Okay, this isn't the Da Vinci Code around here.  I'm not an alien.  (The last time I looked I still only had two boobies instead of an alien standard of three.  That's pretty conclusive, right?)  The NSA isn't parked down the street.  (Although that cleaning van has been here all week and what are those satellite dishes pointed in my direction?)

Okay here's another one for a novella I wrote:

Is this from a certain kind of phone?  Are people saying something to me that I'm not aware of?  I feel incredibly old all of a sudden.

But then I have to put this one on because I've gone off on a sudden tangent of gargantuan proportions and feel compelled.  (There were no symbols involved.)  (You know the reviews I'm not supposed to read anymore.  Shh.  Don't tell HIM or my sister.  I'll send you homemade brownies.):
Worthless drivel

Crude, not believable.
This one is in reference to The Life and Death of Bayou Billy.  Granted this is probably the one book I've written where people seem to gravitate in a spectacularly polar manner.  They hate it.  Like him above, Mr. Worthless Drivel.  Or they love it.  But I felt compelled to talk about it because my work has never been called worthless drivel before.  Ever.  It's a first.  I feel like Sally Field at the Oscars.  ("You like me.  You really, really like me."  or in this case, "You hate me.  You really, really hate me.")

My initial reaction to 'worthless drivel.'
I'm honestly touched that someone felt so obligated by a free download that he had read to come back and write five words about it.  Five whole words.  Those words must have been torn from his tortured psyche.  So what did I do?  I went to all the digital platforms and added the following to the description of Bayou Billy.  Warning: May contain poopoo language for those who are easily offended.  There may be worthless drivel contained inside.  What can I say?  It's my description of my book.  I can write what I want about it.

So HIM just texted me and asked what I was doing.  I replied that I was writing worthless drivel and couldn't be interrupted.  HIM naturally interrupted with, 'Garbage?  Utter garbage or just worthless drivel?'  This, of course, prompts me to go off on yet another tangent.  God, I love those tangents.  They make life so darned interesting.

Shades of mediocrity.
There it is.  The big list of how to judge an author.

And by the way, does anyone know why there's symbols on the reviews?  Cause I'd like to know.

Monday, June 13, 2011

I'm Driving a Jet Plane OR Baby, How Stuff Has Changed

I was driving today, as I do, and while I was sitting at a stoplight, considering whether to flip the man off next to me for trying to cut me off or whether I should just look the other way in case he turns out to be a closet serial killer, it dawned on me that I drive a jet plane now.

Think about it.  I learned how to drive in a 1969 VW Beetle.  (My parents bought the car new for $1995 and doesn't that make you wince.  A few years later, I can vividly remember my mother complaining vehemently about the price of gas being an astounding .69 cents!  Horrors!)  Anyway, at the time I learned how to drive I was fourteen (This was legal in Oregon at the time because there were a lot of farmers who needed their children to drive and become free slave labor.  Fortunately I wasn't the daughter of a farmer and got to freeload off the law.) and things were pretty simple.

The interior of a VW Beetle.
Isn't it complicated?
Doesn't it look like years of training would
be required?  No, you wind up this sucker
like a rubber band plane and then let it rip.
This could be the longest caption ever.
While actually driving you could steer, honk, turn on the turn signal or turn it off, or you could shift gears and brake.  This car certainly wasn't confusing.  You pretty much could go or you could stop.  There wasn't an option for automatic.  Probably learning how to drive a manual clutch was the hardest part.  But I've never forgotten and I can go between my automatic car which I've driven for 10 years and HIM's New Beetle, which has a five speed, without even thinking about it.

But obviously cars evolved.  And so has everything else.  (When I go back and read books I wrote years ago, I laugh because I mention certain technology in them.  I remember one of my characters in a book being so amazed at a cellular phone that was about the size of a toaster.  Haha.  Lesson 56 in writing: Don't date yourself in books unless it's absolutely vital to the plot.  That way if it doesn't get published you can haul it out years later and epublish it.  Epublishing and free enterprise rock!)  (Lesson 13 in writing: For God's sake, read it RELIGIOUSLY for typos because there are people out there who will tear out your throat for even one solitary typo.  And never, ever misuse a word either.  I think there's a secret society of people out there who never forgive me for using Camero instead of Camaro.  Please forgive me.)

Back to cars.  So I'm looking at my car now and thinking there are buttons on this car that I don't know what they're for.  And it's a TEN YEAR OLD Ford Explorer.  (It's practically an antique.  And now I'm smiling at all the people who are thinking, 'Why is an author driving a ten year old Ford Explorer instead of a brand new Ferrari?' Hahaha.  Author is just another word for starving artist.  I'm lucky I have a car that works and a spouse who makes a much better living that I do.)  The auto makers had to make all the cars automatic because if they hadn't people would be killing themselves while trying to shift gears and push buttons at the same time.

Okay, here's the interior view of the 2002 Ford Explorer.

I look at this and make grunting sounds.  Fat Woman drive car.
Good.  Grunt.  Snort.  Snoggle.
You know, it occurs to me that one day I'm going to press a button and it's going to be a seat ejection unit.  I'm going to be launched out, just like Bruce Willis in Die Hard 2.  Oh, wait, I've been inspired to do an illustration for effect.
Man, it's eerie how much I resemble Bruce Willis flying
into the air after pressing an ejector button to
escape an exploding airplane.
So anyway, what I really want is a Dodge Charger.  It's sporty but not too sporty.  BC (that's Before Cressy for you neophytes.  Cressy being my 7 year old daughter.) I drove a 1975 Datsun 280Z.  Now that was a car.  One day I stopped at a light and some kid in a car pulled up beside me.  He looked over at the sporty car and then looked at me and I didn't need to be a psychic to read his mind.  He was thinking, 'Hot car.  Hopefully there's a hot babe driving.'

The moment before utter despair set in in a teenage boy's
heart.  Poor kid.
There was not a hot babe driving it.  There was a short, middle aged Fat Woman driving it.  His little teenage heart was immediately broken.  You could see it in his face.  He was well and truly crestfallen.  This was the moment in time when I realized that I shouldn't be driving an antique sports car anymore.  (That and the fact that every time it broke it needed a minimum of $100 to fix it.)

Does this look like the epitome of abject disappointment?
Why, yes, yes it does.

So I want that Charger next.  I drool over them every time someone drives by.  Screw economical gas mileage.  I want the cool car.  I want to rumble down the street.
Yeah, that's what I'm talking about.
Anyway, so I found an interior shot of the Dodge Charger.

Well, that wasn't the interior of a Dodge Charger.  WTFWIT?
This is just a typical night at the Bevill residence.
Zombies, witches, and the like.
Okay, here's the real interior of a Dodge Charger:

All right, it isn't really the interior shot of a Dodge Charger.
Can't fool you, can I?
Here it is.  Really.  With sarcastic comments attached even.

Maybe I need to go test drive it before I buy it?

Ya think?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

I Have NOT Yet Finished With My Sister's Cat OR How I Continue To Taunt a Hapless (Hah!) Animal

Recently I ridiculed and mocked my sister's cat, Mellow.  (I was laughing with the cat.)  Although I did tell the truth about said animal, there was some underlying gratifying indulgence in illustrating the feline in funny poses and addlepated movies.  That being stated, I feel compelled, as I often do, to do some more!  Yea!  Illustration!

For those of you who aren't up to speed on the Harrowing Case of the Jeered Animal, read 'Things I CANNOT Blog About OR How I've Been Repressed,' and then 'The Dissing of My Sister's Cat OR How It Sounded Like a Challenge.'  Basically I'm having way too much fun at the expense of my sister's beloved antisocial pet.  Oh, so what the hell.
Mellow, who may just sue me if I continue.
You know I'll just blog about the lawsuit.
You know, when I called my sister last weekend she said my daughter wasn't going to want to do anything with me anymore unless I promised first not to blog about it.  Haha.  I guess I won't blog about my daughter this week.

Oh, where oh where shall I start?  With the obvious I think.

Too pithy?  Too bad.  It's my blog.  I'm feeling pithy.  What the
hell does pithy mean?  Sounds like bitchy could be
easily substituted for it.

All righty then.  Next up an old classic.  If you don't know it, then you should go watch your Vincent Price movies again.
You know, Mellow probably eats flies all the time.  Maybe
spiders too.  Some irony here.
Now a little more class stuff.  Say Sean Connery-ish.

See.  Mellow can be suave and debonair.
I'm going to have to work on the way I draw suits.
This looks like a kid about to go to a Catholic school,
not really Bond, James Bond.

But I've only scratched the surface.  (Get it?  Scratched?  Those of you without cats will have to turn to those of you with cats to understand.  Sorry.)

Here's to you, Mrs. Robinson, er, Mellow.
Okay, hitting a classic war film.  I wasn't sure if I should go with Sheen or Brando on this one so I went for the famous quote instead.

I hope the Coppola fans will forgive my transgressions.
I guarantee that HIM will be giggling at this one.
Man, does Martin Sheen look just like Charlie,
except without the crazy, paranoid ranting. 
Wait, there was an editorial change in the above.  HIM suggested the following and since it was funny, I couldn't not do it.

Wow.  Am I in trouble or what?
Oh, yes.  I have more.  Lots more.

Run, Mellow, Run!
Maybe that should be: Run, Fat Woman, Run!  Because
Mellow and my sister are coming to get me.
Could I possibly be going too far?  Possibly but I'm not caring!  So here goes...

Actually this was Dr. Zira about to lock lips with Taylor but
I couldn't find another profile of an ape so oh well.
I really liked The Planet of the Apes and Tim Burton had
a sucky redo, although otherwise he's a wonderful director.
(Planet of the Apes - First time I saw naked men's butts on film.  Obscure factoid.)
As long as I'm cruising down Classic Hollywood Lane, I might as well offend every Bogie fan out there alive.

Yes, I know that's not the real quote.  But it's the one everyone
hears.  If I put the real quote down, a significant proportion of
people would go, "Huh?"  So there it is.
Well, I think I have derided and provoked my sister's cat enough for this week.  It's possible I missed some very good quotes.  I haven't even started looking at famous political quotes yet.  ("Bitch set me up," - Marion Barry, "I'm not going to have some reporters pawing through our papers.  We are the President." - Hillary Clinton, and "The Internet is a great way to get on the net." - Bob Dole all come to mind.)

And of course, I'm open to suggestion.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Attack of the Great, Huge, Glomping, Dripping, Drooling Personnals

So I was sitting around, drinking tea, contemplating how I was going to go back on the diet wagon tomorrow, how I should probably eat everything in the fridge today, and how I'm probably going to be horribly, wretchedly sick later on today.  And it occurs to me that I've got nothing much to blog about.  I could blog about my diet...for the 20,000,000th time.  (Yes, diet again.  Good luck.  Let's make a pool about how long this one lasts.  If she can get past 24 hours then she's doing pretty good.  Hahaha.  I paused to warn HIM, the man to whom I'm married, that I would be dieting tomorrow.  I said it would be kind of like PMS except I'm not actually having PMS, I'm having hunger pangs and also bad temper due to a drop in blood sugar.  I think I might be something like this.)
HIM deciding discretion is the better part of valor or suddenly
deciding that South America sounds like a dandy place
to visit on the spur of the moment
Of course, when Godzilla popped into my head, I thought of what a sad lonely life he must have.  After all, Godzilla's the biggest boy on the block.  Sure, he's radioactive and he's got flames shooting out of his body that have to be a problem area for him.  He must get teased.  He's kind of green or is it black?  He's got some dental issues.  (Do I have to mention the sulfur breath?)  Let's face it.  Godzilla must be hard up.  He's always attacking Tokyo and I'm thinking the Japanese must be tired of all those fires and giant footprints in the middle of their town.  He's just a big, misunderstood kind of goober.  And looky, looky, looky, I've suddenly gone on a wildly divergent tangent of monstrous proportions and I HAVE SOMETHING TO BLOG ABOUT!  LIFE IS GOOD AGAIN!  YEA!

The keys to understanding Godzilla
First, a make over for the big green colossus.

Stage 1: Finding one's perfect foils
There.  Big improvement.  What else?
Stage 2: Flirting with subtle changes in appearance.
All right.  It is an interesting look but maybe not the one we're shooting for.  I think we want confidence but not overconfidence.
Still on Stage 2.
Hmm.  Almost there.  Needs a little tweaking.
Still on Stage 2 and holding.  This might take some adjustment.
Okay.  Not quite right.  Let's try again.
Still tweaking Stage 2.
Or does the pony tail say, 'I'm a little sleazy and hey, dated to the fifties and/or sixties.'?  Maybe.
There ya go. 
Now, for the personal ad.

Finally, Stage 3: the dissemination of the availability
Yes, but does it really describe the essence of the overly large
monster in need of female companionship?
Okay.  I'm going to try again.
But does it really nail that which is truly Godzilla?
One last try.

Oh, if this doesn't do it for the big lizard face, I don't know what will.

But I've had a moment.  I felt compelled to add a video.  Who doesn't want to rock out with BOC singing to clips of Godzilla kicking butt?  (Someone should remind him not to act like this on his first date, but not me.)
Yeah.  That's it.  Remember live long and screeeeeeeeeechhhhhhhh!

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