Discuss amongst yourselves.
Discuss amongst yourselves.
As I’m typing this it’s 3:30 p.m. in Tallahassee, FL, on Tuesday, August 9, 2022. I’m trapped in my car by a thunderstorm of incredible intensity. As one lightning strike ends another takes it’s place and the thunder rolls in a continuous symphony of earth shaking booms. The storm’s now been raging for over half an hour. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.
I texted Studly Doright and told him what’s going on. He’s still at work, you see, in another part of town. He told me he loved me and that it’s been fun… Gee, that’s reassuring.
Y’all carry on.
I slipped inside the cool, dark house
Slipped out of my dress and into
The shower where I slipped
On a bar of soap and sat
For many minutes as
The tears slipped
Every Wednesday a group of about six male coffee drinkers meets at a table outside the coffee shop I frequent for my writing. I’ve exchanged pleasantries with the men on occasion, but never stopped to talk.
This morning as I was leaving, having reached my daily writing goal, one of the men said, “Leaving early today?”
“Yessir. I reached my word count so now I can go spend my husband’s money on frivolous stuff like food and gasoline.”
They all laughed, so I figured my work on earth was done.
“You’re a writer then?” Another man asked.
Now, the smart a** side of me wanted to say something witty, but the regular side of me couldn’t come up with anything, so I just admitted to being a writer.
And then I went into marketing mode. Sold six books. Yay me.
Today I was engaged in working on book number four in the Happy Valley series while sipping on a latte at one of my favorite coffee shops, when a sharp rap on the window beside my table took me completely out of the groove.
I rededicated myself to the task of figuring out what the hell my characters were going to do and say next, when a rather nice looking gentleman of about my age brought a coffee around to my table, pulled out a chair, and took a seat.
“How have you been?” He asked.
Now I struggle with recalling names and faces, but I was fairly certain I didn’t know this guy.
“I’m sorry. Do we know each other?”
“Sure. From the neighborhood. You know…”
“Which neighborhood would that be?”
He told me the name of the rather upscale Tallahassee neighborhood, and I said, “Sir, I live in Havana. So I think you’ve mistaken me for someone else.”
His eyes narrowed and for a minute I thought he was going to challenge me—that he thought I might be messing with him.
After a moment he said, “Well, you have a doppelgänger, then.”
I said it wasn’t the first time I’d been mistaken for someone else in the area. Out of curiosity I asked who it was he’d thought I was. “Oh, it’s ________ __________. You look exactly like her.”
When I didn’t recognize the name he explained that the woman’s a lobbyist for some organization and asked if I, too, was a lobbyist. Now, that was the darndest question, wasn’t it?
“No sir,” I said. “I’m a writer.”
“Oh, then I suppose you aren’t who I thought you were.”
He went on his way and I thought, I should write this down. So I did.
I still don’t know what my characters are going to do or say next, though.
Folks, I’m officially old. I started off the day with a visit to a walk-in orthopedic clinic because one of my knees is acting up. Oh, it doesn’t hurt when I walk or sit. But if I happen to turn onto my right side and curl into my favorite sleeping position, it’s as if someone has pushed a serrated knife into the tissue next to my kneecap.
So I fully expected the doctor at the clinic to say, “If it only hurts when you do that, then for goodness sake, don’t do that.”
Instead, he sent me home with a smile and a prescription for a steroid, but only after doing something to my knee that resulted in me saying a word that, if my mother were still alive, would have had her washing out my mouth with soap and water. And I’d have deserved it.
Afterwards, I limped to my car, because NOW my knee hurts when I walk.
Still, a woman has needs and I needed lunch. So I went to a little sushi place in a strip mall. There were employees sitting outside having a smoke and even though their posted opening time was eleven a.m. and it was now ten after the hour, the OPEN sign hadn’t been turned on.
I asked if they were indeed open, and one of the employees said, “Technically we are.”
Now, this struck me wrong. Maybe I’ve reached the “Get off my lawn” stage of life, or maybe I was wondering why in hell my knee felt worse after I went to the doctor than it did before, and I just wasn’t in the mood for such a lackadaisical response.
The employee started to stand and I said, “Oh, I’m technically not going to eat here.”
I pointed to the cool little Takko Korean taqueria place just a few doors down. “Technically, I’m going to eat at that place, where the doors are open and the little sign says “C’mon in!”
And let me tell you, those damned tacos were amazing.
Ironically enough, peace, people.
Our cat, Gracie, loves me. She loves me with her whole heart. If my WordPress account allowed, I’d post a picture of her, and you’d be able to see the love light shining in her eyes. Or the mischief. It’s hard to tell.
She’s beautiful—A muted calico with a white strip from the top of her head to the tip of her cute little nose. Sometimes I catch her admiring herself in the mirror.
And she’s so smart. She can open the cabinet in which her treats are stored, and without fail, brings us a bag of treats every night after the lights are out. It’s the equivalent of a toddler’s “just one more drink, Mommy” or “read me one more story.”
If I go to bed before Studly Doright does, Gracie will pester him until he joins me. But if I stay up a little later, she curls up in my lap until I indicate that I’m ready for bed. Like I say, she loves me.
I’m sitting here watching her attack her scratching post, shredding the fibers with a vengeance. The post has seen better days, but it’s her favorite toy. Even so, I’ve begun to think of it as a piece of modern sculpture. Maybe we could sell it for a small fortune and Gracie could create a new one. Maybe she could reimburse us for all those treats. Maybe I need to get some sleep tonight. I’m rambling.
Studly Doright and I resisted watching Yellowstone for as long as possible. I was a bit of a snob about it: Me? Watch a silly nighttime soap opera? Puhlease! I’ve much better things to do.
Two weeks in and we’re both hooked. Just don’t take me to the train station in case I decide to leave the ranch. I’ll keep the family secrets. I promise. But those Duttons—whew.
Peace, and giddyup people.
From the summer of 2018.
…I have to pinch myself.
Here I am, a 65.5-year-old woman who, for most of her life told everyone who cared to listen that someday she’d write a book.
No one really believed me. Heck, I didn’t really believe me. And yet, late in my 64th year, I did just that. I published my first book. Six months later, I published a second book. Write and repeat two more times, and now there are four books with my name on them. Yes, I have to pinch myself.
So whatever it is you have dreamed of doing, start doing it. Don’t make me come over there and pinch you.