Wednesday, May 09, 2007

A Coherent Post? Me?

Why don’t I live in a world where I can write about the funniest things in my life? Oh right. Because my family and friends would kidnap me, blindfold me, and drop me off in the Sonoran Desert where I would wander aimlessly for days, tonelessly humming the One Day at a Time theme song while my lips blistered, cracked, and finally sloughed right off my face like sad little Rice Krispie scabs.

Granted, I do keep a few of the amusing moments in my life close at hand so I can furtively drop them into a scene in my next book. But I can’t think about this right now, as I am focused on three things: 1) figuring out how to solve a problem near the climax of my book so that it exceeds my editor’s expectations (Hehehe. She said “climax.”); 2) finishing my last two grant proposals of the year so that they exceed the expectations of two of my favorite elementary school principals in the whole wide world; and 3) digging, planting, and generally obsessing over the new gardens I am in the process of establishing, with the ultimate goal of having my morning coffee in a backyard oasis (which no doubt will never live up to these expectations). I also want to entertain back here, if anyone wants to come over and be plied with a level of wine that I believe will help you ignore the flaws in my planting scheme.

So in lieu of a real post, here are some photos:

I found this ancient skeleton key and tiny spoon while planting some bareroot blackberries next to the garage. (Hmm. I bet that sentence has never before been written in the history of humanity.)

A Recipe for "Makin' the Magic Happen" (My, how that recipe has changed over the years...)

Two weekends of Painting. (You don't think this gives the impression that I live in a barbershop, do you? I have been cutting my own hair lately...)

A Porch Planting "Before" Photo. My goal is to make the mailman feel he's entering Borneo when he delivers my daily bale of charity requests. As you can see, we're off to a tepid start. I'll follow-up on this in late August.

Moving on. Because my favorite professor just gave me some material too good to pass up, I also present to you a collection of bits from the journal entries of college freshmen, one week before the spring semester ends:

Student #1: “…This is why I hate girls; they are moody, self-absorbed, flakey, ignorant, naïve, ostentagious, egotistical, popmpous creatures too busy with their own meaningless lives to notice anyone else.”

Student #2: “The only problem with today is that it is an asshole’s birthday. My latest heartbreak, I really wanted to make this birthday amazing for him. Las year I went to a part with him, basically he ended up telling me he wasn’t interested, so I made out with his brother. Then he decided he was interested.”

Student #3: “I have basically decided I am an attention whore, everything should be about me, all the time.”

Same student: “So there we were on our way to IHOP on hwy. 41 going 45 miles per hour because my dad doesn’t know how the fuck to drive.”

Student #4: “If I didn’t have to go to college I would piss my pants in happiness.”

Same student, on lying: “I lie about everything, from exaggerations to my abilities…I told people here I got a scholarship…I’ve lied about actually going through with killing myself…I lie about sex. I say I’ve had sex with like 5 people and that I’m really experienced. Truth is I’ve had sex with one person I didn’t know after getting drunk and now that person is dating a friend…I’ve never had a boyfriend, but I had like week things which are basically a week of making out in their house and maybe a little more.”

Student #5: “I actually worked out for once today. I need to get in shape because I’m goint to Sheboygan for Spring Break.”

And finally, some random responses to the journal assignment Things I’ve Learned in College So Far:
  • "Boys are only interested in a piece of ass."
  • "Parents aren’t as clueless as they seem."
  • "No one cares what you do."
  • "I’m not invisible."
  • "Some people are beyond help."
  • "I have a lot of growing up to do yet."
  • "Don’t get drunk the night before a test. You won’t get a good grade."
  • "Facebook = procrastination."
  • "Don’t pass out in someone else’s room. You’ll get drawn on with Sharpies."
  • "Peeing and puking in public costs you money."
  • "You get away with a lot without being called a slut."
  • "I never know there were so many books until I walked into the library."
In closing, there is exciting literary news! The lovely and talented Allison Winn Scotch's well-reviewed debut novel The Department of Lost and Found has been released, and is available NOW at your local bookseller (or online). Allison's a terrific writer and a generous person, and I'm proud to be pimping her book on my blog. (For a great review of the book, check out Manic Mom's Tuesday post; for a great Q&A with Allison, check out Eileen Cook's site. I will also be pimping Steph's & Eileen's books when they are released in the near future. Just a heads-up.)


  1. such beautiful plants...I wish I had a lovely garden...perhaps I'm not using the right method though ;)

    ...oh, and loved the student stuff, it cracked me up!!

  2. I wonder if Student One and Student Three know each other? They sound like they do.

  3. a barbershop.

    crack me up, you.

  4. Those "Things I've Learned" are PRICELESS! I'm glad to see college isn't completely pointless. ;)

    I LOVE that key and spoon you found. My Grandma had a class cabinet when I was little that was filled with those kinds of keys. I used to take them out and pretend they opened secret doorways in her house.

  5. That's not fair, posting so many funny tidbits in one post. Now how the hell am I supposed to pick something to comment on?

    Ok, let's just say "You get away with a lot without being called a slut." is actually true. I've tested it.

  6. Anonymous12:51 PM

    I think the theme to "One Day at a Time" would be a good song to hum under those circumstances. "Hold on tight, we'll muddle through" and "Don't you worry none" --now those are some mighty inspiriational lyrics.

  7. "peeing and puking in public costs you money" - words for the ages. what insight. I'm stunned.

    Also - rice crispie lips? perfectly icky.

  8. You have MAGICAL HIDDEN TREASURE in your backyard and you're planting flowers???? I'd hire a strong guy in a plaid shirt with a backhoe to dig up the whole yard and see what sort of treasure chest that key unlocks...

  9. It's too early and I can't concentrate enough to read the whole post, but my maiden name is the same on that plant food, or whatever that bag of stuff is on that picture.

    Your painting talent is extraordinaire, and very cute rusted tool things you unearthed.

  10. You drink while gardening, too?? How I love you.

  11. ha! love the Seed Starter Kit!

  12. After a glass or two of red, the seed starter mix tastes much better.

  13. The bird on the Seed Starter Mix looks awfully proud of himself.

    I love the artifacts you found outside the barbershop.

  14. I think your house looks very nice. I love the student discoverying so many books in the library. I'll bet the amount of water in a lake was a real surprise as well.

  15. Anonymous8:26 AM

    Your porch is so CLEAN. And pretty.

    It's a tough call, but I think I love Student #5 the best. Sheboygan indeed.

  16. Anonymous11:47 AM

    Terrific post, very funny.

    "boys are only interested in a piece of ass."

    Wait until she gets really old, like 25, and realizes THAT DOESN'T CHANGE.

  17. SO much to comment on in this lovely post.

    LOVE the college quotes.

    And, is that a "Smoking Loon" bottle? And how telling it is that I should know that. day I hope to be drinking that in your fantastic backyard garden listening to those classic neighbors of yours and flashing the postman through your jungle of Borneo. I'll give him something to deliver...or remember...or repress...maybe just in that order.

  18. Love this post... so many choice tidbits to delight in! I haven't giggled this much in days! THANKS!

    So, no... the house doesn't look like a barbershop. The windows are too small and they're clean.

    I love the mail man plan. It's good. I haven't figured out quite what to do with our guy yet; he's one of the most 'unusual men' I've ever seen.

    LOVE the spoon and key. I especially love that you put them on wood to take their photo... it's a great shot. What have you done with them since?

    I've just started my second tour through college, and may I only say... these things are true, and I weep for the future of our country. Or... I could sum it up in one single profound word.


    Of course, it's not the same without the slowly spoken monotone drone, accompanied by the completely unenthused expression on my face, highlighted by my slightly raised eyebrows...

    I love your page, I am coming back for more, regularly.
    Many, many thanks!


  19. That's it. I'm getting a bumper sticker made that says:

    "Sheboygan for Spring Break!"