Archive for July, 2011

Liar, Liar pants on fire

Thursday, July 28th, 2011

Jesus, I need to stop making promises that I’m going to post more regularly. Obviously it’s lies, all lies.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I don’t go into it thinking, “I’m going to lie to these suckers: string ‘em along. Get their hopes up and bilk them for beer money.” It’s not like that at all.

a) I’m not that complicated

b) I was raised Catholic: I experience guilt easily and regularly.

c) It doesn’t work anyway. Beer change purse = empty.  (Minus you, Jose. You are currently the only one who *may* receive a Soleil visa. The rest of you: enjoy the strip search at the border. It will be lengthy AND invasive.)

So what excuses can I offer for my lax posting as of late?

I don’t know. Life. Love. The pursuit of happiness.

liar liar pants on fireActually, that’s not entirely untrue, really. Granted, sleep, scooping of poop, and the pursuit of groceries took up a fair amount of time, as well, but they could probably be categorized under “life”, “love”, and “the pursuit of happiness” – and in that order – and shake out as more or less factual.

I have no idea how to explain myself, so I’ll just grope in the nearing dark here, and we’ll see what shakes out.

I’ve been editing. The new book is out with the first round of readers, and I’ll have some changes to make. Then it will be read again (by new folks…or those who already read can have a second go if they like) and then copy edited and then…God willing…on a New York Times Bestseller list near you.

I’ve been working on my business idea – and let’s just say it’s super out there and involves past lives. (Yes. You heard me: past lives. Go ahead and take a minute to laugh. We’re all friends here.) – with my esteemed mentor/colleague/beloved friend. We’re making progress, and I’m starting to see it coming together in my mind, but somehow it has been more draining than you might imagine.

If you want, check out the website I set up. It’s far from ready, but since I’ve been so neglectful, I feel kind of like I owe you something.

I have a NEW (unrelated) business idea I’m excited about, but that is super top secret, so I’m just going to stop this train of thought before I accidentally say any mo….

Okay, this is the THIRD time I have heard glass breaking outside the window. Although part of me is very curious as to what the hell is going on, the rest of me is too lazy to turn around and find out. Let’s just speculate, shall we?

a) Greek wedding

b) Cathartic glass bottle upon concrete smashing by ragea-holic bum (i.e. Reminds me of an old Homer Simpson lament, “I’m a rage-aholic: I’m addicted to rage-ahol!”)

c) Three-part attempt to break into the Spanish grocery across the street (and in that case, I better get  off my duff and get while the getting’s good. Half of my grocery money goes toward the Matiz sardines and Castelvetrano olives [Italian, but they carry them there] sold in that joint.)

flame-proof underwear

So are they saying this underwear is flame proof or that it will burst into flames? I guess half the fun is in the not knowing.

So I wrote the above three days ago (and probably should have just hit “publish” but my Macbook – being the testy and unreliable beast that it is – crashed shortly thereafter and I just didn’t have the time or enthusiasm to log back in and finish my thought. This is only relevant because the next night (so two nights ago), the alarms at the Spanish grocery store went off for over an hour. Quel coincidence!

Much like the glass breaking, I didn’t turn around to see what it was for the first twenty or thirty minutes because, well, I’m lazy, as we already discussed. But then eventually I got annoyed enough that I did look, and I could see the some kind of strobe light blinking inside and, of course, my ear drums were thoroughly abused by the unspeakable shrieking of the alarm itself and I was immediately cast back to that hideous dorm room in Glasgow nearly three years ago. However, since there was no obvious broken glass or entry route in the front of the store, going over and availing myself of armfuls of sardines, fig jam, and cava didn’t seem practical…or possible. Plus, there’d be all that guilt to deal with.

In other news, yesterday was – on some counts – one of the worst days of my life, and that drama is still a work in process. I will probably tell you all about it early next week when it is clear whether the situation that is unfolding around me is as bad as it seems or just seemingly bad. It’s probably 50/50 odds that everything will turn out just fine: maybe 40/60 and the 40 is in my favor. However, as the cop put it, “Maybe this will work out. Sometimes people have a shady past and then decide to clean up.”

So I’ll stop short with that tidbit (and the now exceptionally – potentially – relevant title) and the additional clue that my stress and anxiety have to do with my living situation. Above all, you have my absolute promise that the next time I catch you up, it will be both soon and with one hell of a story.

Until then, let me leave you with a thought from Gilda Radner, which feels particularly apropos today.

“I wanted a perfect ending. Now I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next. Delicious Ambiguity.”

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The more things change…

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

South Sudan is it’s own country now.

Now there are TWO shitty countries named “Sudan.”

I’m kidding. I’m sure South Sudan is…er…um…lovely this time of year. Actually, I don’t really know that. Certainly it’s war-torn, dry, dusty, poor, arid, kinda miserable, probably beautiful on a good day or through the right lens or to someone who has recently had corneal implants. If nothing else, I hope both Sudans are filled with plenty of redeeming examples of humanity, but again, I wouldn’t know.

Oddly enough, my mother lived in Khartoum with her family in the late 50′s, shortly after they became a country. It doesn’t sound like whole lot of fun (and back then, white women like my grandmother couldn’t go to the market: not to mention there wasn’t really any food to buy anyway), but I wish the new Sudan a lot of luck.

I mention this only because I’ve been thinking about what it takes to be a country lately for no good reason other than sometimes I like to muse about stupid or pointless things. It’s just a little something I call “self-entertaining.”

So anyway, have you ever had a moment where you’re pretty sure you’re being whimsical and perhaps even delightful, and someone else experiences it as annoying?

Yeah. Me too.

In fact, just a week or so ago, I was kind of sick of someone’s endless political talk, and tried changing the conversation to a discussion of how I might form my own country. First off, they weren’t taking me seriously.

“What country? You?”

“Yes. Me.”

“But what country? What are you talking about?”

“Suppose I buy an island. That’s my country.”

“You have an island?”

“No, but I suppose I did.”

“What? Why?”

“Supposing I buy an island. In that case, I’m talking about my new island nation I’m going to form. All the money is going to have pictures of my pets – living and dead – on it.”

Anyway, after enough pushing and insisting I really needed to know the answers to these questions, I was informed that becoming my own country would require the okay of the United Nations, which doesn’t sound that unreasonable or unachievable, in the big picture. And it got me wondering: is there some kind of dinner party beforehand where I could get the deciding nations – which I was informed were the US, Spain, France, Japan, Russia, and maybe somebody or other I forgot (probably forgotten because I do remember digressing a little by noting that nobody from Africa nor Australia had any voting power) and there was something about how the US didn’t have to vote for there to be a majority vote. I don’t know. Rules and regulations make my mind wander. I’ll look up the thorny details later once the island nation is ready to roll. I think I’ll call it Utopia. Or is that too arrogant? Maybe a bunch of know-it-all types I don’t really want around will be attracted if I name it Utopia. Scratch that. I’m naming it Soleil.

Wow. I got a little offtrack there. All I was saying was, if there’s a little soiree where I can get the deciding parties liquored up and get their ear, I can be a pretty compelling little lady. Trust me on that one. You don’t want to end up on the opposite end of the sheer force of my will.

In other news, here’s a moment at the grocery store earlier today that made me laugh:

Check-out guy: “That looks great!”

Me: “A raw chunk of pork looks great?”

Check-out guy: “Well, are you going to slow roast it?”

Me: “I am, actually.”

Check-out guy: “That’s what I’m talking about!!!”


And that’s all I have to say about that.

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Tough times call for bad ideas

Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

So Casey Anthony was found not guilty. If you’re not an American (or you’re a completely unplugged American [and good for you, if so! Although now that I think about it: how and why are you reading this if that's the case? Hmmm.... The mind boggles.]), those words may mean nothing.Thus – and in extreme brief – Casey Anthony is a young Florida woman whose two-year old daughter went missing for 31 days…and she didn’t report it ever. In fact, she went out partying and got a tattoo that said “Bella Vita” two weeks after the baby disappeared and told a whole lotta lies about where the child was (a nanny who didn’t exist, an amusement park, the beach) when her parents inquired.


Bernie Madoff

Perhaps I could take up a collection from those he hosed?

That much is fact. The rest – that she murdered the kid or it accidentally died and she drove Caylee (the child) around in a trash bag in her trunk for weeks before dumping her body off in the woods – are circumstantial, which is why she’s now about to go free and cash in on the whole horrible thing. On the one hand, I suppose this is an indicator that the system works. I’d rather have guilty people walking around out there than innocent people on death row (I don’t think there should be death row at all, but that’s probably more than I need to get into right now).

On the other hand, this turn of events has inspired not one, but two people to suggest that I get myself involved in a high-profile crime – but also somehow assure that I get away with it. One idea was that I shoot someone in the head – a la Amy Fischer – but make sure they don’t die (because that’s so easily achieved. << ahem >>) and the other was that I kill someone important. Now, when I push for details – how do I both kill someone notable AND get tied to the crime, but still manage to get away with it – my would-be PR reps fall suddenly mum.

When I ask why this is necessary: isn’t my writing and the new book sufficient to earn me a relevant paycheck and a career? Shouldn’t I keep the faith that *somebody* has to get the multi-million dollar deals and the Pulitzer: why not me? AM I NOT GOOD ENOUGH JUST THE WAY I AM??? Well, let’s just say you could hear the crickets chirping.

However, when I plead: do I REALLY have to kill someone and get away with it to make it as a writer, the response was a resounding “yes.”

Charlie Sheen crazy

My god, what is wrong with this man? And how can anyone find it amusing???

So there you go. You can’t fight city hall or completely insane PR advice or the fact that if the glove doesn’t fit, you must acquit. Thus, I am currently taking suggestions for my perfect murder. I’m thinking I could execute both a terrible crime and a public service, all the while putting my name on the map. A win/win, if you will.

I’ve given it some thought, and my short target list includes:

1. Charlie Sheen

2. Bernie Madoff

3. Casey Anthony


The actual deed could go down something like

1. In the library with a candlestick

2. In the billiards room with a rope

3. In the conservatory with a lead pipe.


Granted, there are still a lot of details to work out, old mansions to procure and lure Charlie Sheen into, and hardware store shopping to execute. Probably I should read up on non-death penalty states. Maybe I should get my head checked or wait a little longer just in case this new book really is the one.  On the other hand, I was looking for hard statistics, and allegedly the odds that you’ll get away with murder are 2:1. Similarly, 2/3 of all murders go unsolved.  I don’t know about you, but I’m starting to think I just might pull this off…

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