Sunday, November 28, 2010

      For those of you who missed it at A Daily Dose of Decadence  a few weeks back, here's a blog titled 'Why I'll Never Have a Blue Car'  Enjoy! Don't forget to check out the Decadent Publishing's blogspot and DP website for interesting blogs and great stories from all the DP authors!

And FREE STUFF -- you can win daily at 30 Days of Decadence - AND a gorgeous grand prize from the DP Authors and the great folks at Decadent Publishing!

AND- gosh I'm full of ANDS today --- check out my gal Deanna Wadsworth's new holiday short story SECRET SANTA - it's part of READ FOR A CURE during the month of December.

Now -without further adieu:
 ‘Any color but blue, please.’

                Favorite song – don’t really have one.
                Favorite food – uh, nothin’ there either.
                Favorite movie – I can narrow that down some, anything with Russell Crowe or Denzel Washington in it, or both. (Which leaves me with ‘Virtuosity’ and ‘American Gangster’.) Okay, separately works well, too.
                Favorite beer – Spotted Cow
---That's Brad---
                Favorite baseball player – well, duh, anyone who knows me knows it’s Brad Ausmus.
                Favorite car color – ANY COLOR BUT BLUE! (Yes, I know I’m yelling and there’s a reason for that.)
                Oh, let’s go back to 2003 – the lease on my cute little white Sebring was up and it was time for a new one. My dear huz sure knows how to pick cars, so he surprises me in July with another Sebring, in a gorgeous metallic ice blue color. I had complete strangers coming up to me asking me the name of the car’s color. I just called it ‘metallic ice blue,’ because to be honest it most likely had some pretentious, ‘look-at-me-I’m-the-guy-who-invented- the color’ name.
                I loved that car- it was comfortable, got great gas mileage and had an up-and-at’em cajone of an engine.
                That love began to dissipate two months later in September.
                I’ll warn you ahead of time, this is kind of a sad beginning to the story, but I’m sure that person is ROFL near the pearly gates, while completely rolling her eyes at her lone daughter.
                My mother had been ill and was quickly losing her battle with liver disease. I got a call early on a Monday morning that I might want to ‘get home right away.’ Well, ‘getting home right away’ for me is a six hour drive – I live in Ohio, she was in Wisconsin.
                So, I hop in the car, try not to worry, accept the fact that I will soon be sans parents and brace myself for the minutia that comes with dealing with a funeral. I was in a pretty good mood actually – I was prepared for this.
                She passed while I was zipping by Great America (now Six Flags) in Gurnee, Illinois, just outside Chicago.
                As I get to Wisconsin, is where the story gets interesting. As a preface, I have the world’s smallest bladder – and of course, I was guzzling 32 ounce pops and coffee all the way there.
                I’m ten blocks from my childhood home and I’m dancing in my seat – no way is that little receptacle going to hold out another mile or so. I pull in to the nearest McDonald’s and trot to the facilities.
                I’m two steps back into the parking lot when a young man calls my way ‘Ma’am (ooo, I can’t tell you how I despise that!) is this your blue car?’
                “Ah, yeah.”
                “Well, I kind of hit it,’ he said, leaning against a huge loaded box truck.
                ‘Kind of hit’ is relative. If my metallic ice blue, two month old Chrysler Sebring had been a full size Hummer, yes, ‘kind of hit’ would have worked, but because I didn’t…the front driver’s side quarter panel was gone, the cowl was in pieces and my hood was badly crimped.  The car was a mess and would not be Interstate worthy.
                As I sat down in the car and started pulling out insurance info, I laughed, yes, laughed. This incident was a tiny pebble in my shoe compared to the magnitude of reason I was in Wisconsin to begin with.
                He apologizes and we begin exchanging information.  
                “Oh, and you’re from out of town,” he says.
                “Yes, I’m here to bury my mother.”
                I thought he was going to pass out. He mumbled, he stumbled, he couldn’t figure out why I thought this was so funny. He apologizes over and over. I assure him it’s all right and we finish our business.
                Then, I call my husband, who is still in Ohio.
                “What did you do?!” was the first thing out of his mouth.
                “I was peeing!
                “What do you mean you were ‘peeing’?”
                “My pants were around my ankles and I was in the McDonald’s bathroom peeing!” Why do husbands always seem to think automotive trouble is due to their wife’s operator error!?
                “Well, get a police report, for the insurance.”
                So, that’s taken care of. I eventually get the Sebring cable-tied and strapping-taped back together well enough to make her Interstate worthy again.
                I bury my mom and head home.
                That was just the first incident with the metallic ice blue Sebring.
                A summer later, my metallic ice blue friggin cursed Sebring is parked in the parking garage at work.
                I get a call at my desk from building security, “Do you have a blue Sebring?”
                Dear Lord, now what?! “Yes, I do.”
                “Could you come to the office, some one hit it.”
                I’m seriously thinking I’m beginning to hate this---BLUE--- car.
                So, I wander downstairs, first to my car, which has an enormous dent in its back passenger side bumper.
                It’s explained to me by the man who owns the brand new, convertible, racy Fiat roadster that, “My car must have jumped out of gear, rolled down the garage ramp and…”
                “…Was stopped by the back end of my car.” I interrupt.
                “Well, someone could have been run over,” he snipes.
                “Yeah, but thankfully my car prevented that,” I smile back.
                “Uh, this usually doesn’t happen. This is my summer car.”
                WTF?!  “Oh, good for you, this is my only car!”
                He pulls out a check book, “How ‘bout I right you a check right now, we’ll be done with this.”
                “How about you cough up your insurance information and we’ll be done with this.”
                “Oh, that’s not really necessary.”
                “Oh yes… yes it is.”
                Did I mention he worked for one of the largest legal firms in the city?!
                I’m really beginning to hate this ---BLUE --- car.
                It was fairly quiet for about two years. (Yes, to top it off it was a SIXTY month lease –never again)
                Until Christmas of 2007.
                My brother was in town from Wisconsin and had a flight back home. We have breakfast and head out to the airport where he has a hopper to Detroit connecting to Milwaukee. It had been foggy and rainy. The ticket agent mentioned the connector up to Detroit was running ninety minutes late, which would put him in DTW after the flight to Milwaukee left. Two other people were at the counter in the same predicament.
                “C’mon, it’ll be faster if I just drive you to Detroit Metro.” (…in the metallic ice blue cursed Sebring.)
                “Are you going to Metro?” I’m asked.
                “Sure, wanna ride?”
                So, off we go – my brother, two strangers and more luggage than has ever been in the car.
                Three miles later, WHUBBA WHUBBA WHUBBA…
                C’mon, you want to guess!  FLAT TIRE!
                So, there I am, on the side of the road, in the rain. I had to unpack the trunk to get to the donut wheel. You know what, I’m pretty darn good at changing tires! So, after the change and praying that I got the lug nuts on tight enough, off we went.
                The remainder of the ride to Detroit Metro was uneventful, thankfully! And, we arrived with enough time for my brother and the two stranger-passengers to make their connections.
                I’m parked at the curb, unloading luggage again when the vehicle parked in front of me, a pickup with the giant cab on the back decides to back up without looking.
                $1,700 hole in my front grille.
                You know what, I laughed!
                A bid adieu to my brother and passengers, exchange information with the offending driver and hit the road back to Ohio.
                I call my husband, “Do you want the good news or the bad news?”
                “Don’t tell me,” he says, “…you were peeing.”
                And, that’s why any car I ever have again will be any color but blue!

Friday, November 26, 2010


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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Big Kids, Jerry Springer and Pie

...find out why I'm thankful for these three things, WEDNESDAY, 11/24/10 at A Daily Dose of Decadence.

And, RESPITE is still in the editing phase, but I'm hopin' it'll be available before Christmas!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Common Sense?

           For those of you who missed it at A Daily Dose of Decadence  a few weeks back, here's a blog titled 'Is Common Sense on the Curriculum?'  Enjoy! Don't forget to check out the Decadent Publishing's blogspot and DP website for interesting blogs and great stories from all the DP authors!

           When I’m not writing for pleasure and publication (YAY! Thanks Decadent!) I spend my days behind an assignment desk in a television station newsroom.  ‘Riding the Desk,’ as it’s called.
            I am an assignment manager. (Which, if you go by the adage ‘crap rolls down hill,’ I am in the lowest spot of the newsroom.)
            Some of my daily duties include: butt-kicker, mother, psychologist, grammar/history expert, human spell-check, hand-holder, pronoun corrector, receptionist, assistant to the news director, traffic cop, scanner jockey…just to name a few. I’m the ‘hub’ of the wheel, so to speak – info comes in, and it’s my job to get it out to the right places.
            I work with college graduates – I am a college graduate, but the curriculum of Common Sense must have been an elective in the past twenty years or so. Don’t get me wrong, I adore most of the ‘kids’ I work with, but ‘book-learnin’ certainly doesn’t teach them how to get along in the real world. Maybe their parents had the same ‘missing’ common sense gene, I don’t know.
            For example, a young lady I worked with left in a station vehicle. Not moments later, my phone rings and I hear, (no offense, but please use your most irritating mouse voice for this), “Uh, yeah, um the gas light is on in the Jeep, what should I do?”
            Now, c’mon, you don’t think I’m gonna be THAT easy on her, do you? I politely mentioned, ‘Well, if you drive around long enough, it will eventually go out.”
            “Okay,” she sing-songs and hangs up.
            (For those of you who have spent too much scrubbing your manuscript---the gas light will go out when she’s out of gas!)
            Was that wrong of me? I don’t know – but c’mon! Everyone has a car! And most vehicles in the past twenty years (I don’t know anyone who drives less than an ’85 anymore!) have gas level indication lights. Anyway, I need to take my moments of levity when they present themselves.
            For some reason, the thought of stopping at a gas station and filling the tank never occurred to her! (Hmm, I haven’t seen her in quite some time, I wonder if the little light actually went out and…)
            Maybe if you’re sixteen and new to the driving scene, you might not know what the gas light signifies, but if you’re twenty-nine… Enough said. (Same folks, however, are sure to know every conceivable emoticon and email abbreviation. To which I must say, OMG -lol?!)
            While I’m on ‘the vent,’ this is the same journalism grad (and she’s not the only one) who could not figure out the difference between ‘there,’ ‘their’ and ‘they’re.’  Go figure. I guess Spellcheck (although a fine tool) didn’t know either.
            Please don’t think I’m hammerin’ on j-grads, as I’m not --- I’m hammerin’ on Common Sense…or lack thereof. (By the way, my degree is a Bachelor of Science in Radio/TV/Film…which means I have a BS in BS.)
            I do have to mention, this same young, cub reporter, just a day later, accidentally hit the ‘panic button’ on the key fob and was at a loss at how to turn off the incessant honking. Yeah, I got a phone call for instructions on that too!
            Sometimes I wonder what happens between brain and mouth. Whatever it is, lately it isn’t good. Common sense seems to evaporate in that oh, two to three inch, less-than-millisecond span.
            My father was often heard saying, ‘Make sure brain is engaged before putting mouth in gear.’
            Love you, Daddy, but the problem with that statement at this time is – mouths are usually on automatic now, manual transmissions of the vehicular and verbal variety have gone the way of the Betamax, rotary dial phone and the stove-top percolator.
            Whoo…I feel so much better.
            Can’t wait till the next Wild Wednesday, I already have a blog in mind – stories from my radio past, painting pictures with the verbal word. You know if you pound on the back of a traffic reporter on the radio, it sounds just like he’s in a helicopter?
            Yes, people believe that!
            Um, what was it I said about common sense?


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Blue cars suck...

...find out why in my twisted way, tomorrow - Wednesday - at A Daily Dose of Decadence blogspot!

I know - whatever!


---for those of you wondering, more edits on RESPITE - story gets better everytime, thanks to Audrei and crew!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

FREE books!

Hopefully mine, RESPITE, will be on that FREE list soon!

But, check it out all you bibliophiles who love stuff gratis!

Free books!

Hopefully, more edits back this weekend!