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Crazy Farm Box, Winter Edition. And Some Sex.

Our Farmer’s Market is closing for the winter, and so I have signed up once again to receive Crazy Farm Box, a random carton of winter crops grown organic-style by a local farmer. Yay, leafy lettuces that taste like food instead of textured waters. Yay, exciting and mysterious unidentified squash that I must google to learn how to cook and eat. Yay, malformed weirdo final apples of the season. But also? Turnips. WTH am I supposed to do with all these turnips?

I hope the answer isn’t, “Eat them.” Because, blech.

I googled “creative uses for turnips” but accidentally hit IMAGE search.

That could have ended badly.

O Halp! Turnip!

Luckily, the only truly creative image/use for turnips that resulted from that search is here to the left. Yes, Virginia, turnips can be used to menace princesses. Apparently.

I did make a pretty good batch of creamed turnips last year, but those were good because of the CREAM part. See also: whole stick of butter. I think we all could have done without the turnips that were in there. Anyone know something I can do with them that has less fat than your average winter walrus? I am considering carving faces in them in lieu of pumpkins, using them as projectile weaponry against this *@&^#%$(&^###ing chipmunk who is RUINING MY LIFE, or perhaps simply downgrading them from “Food” to “Mulch.”

In other news, STOP THE PRESSES, I like a song. I like a song in a way that I do not LIKE songs, like, in a way that the song makes think things about the book. I hear other writers talk about the connection between music and writing, but I don’t experience that. Usually. More on this later. (No, really,. I have a lot to say about this. It is not a pink sock.)

This particular song is helping me work out the mechanics of word sex for two of my imaginary friends I am playing with in this book. I HATE writing good sex. I like writing bad sex, because bad sex is hilarious. Or grotesque. Or both. But good sex is almost impossible to write without getting all purpled-n-drippy or having it read like an overly perky 8th grade biology textbook explaining earnestly who puts their what where and when and I feel like I should end the scene by joyously trumpeting, “And THAT’S how you get a BABY, kiddies,” and then immediately give up writing altogether.

The main problem with the song is that the official VIDEO is…a little moopy. Good lord, all the black and white and arhythmical headless lady-torso swayings and tear stained goony lookings and the NUZZLING that makes me want to put my eyes out while screaming, STOP NUZZLING. And nose piercings upset me and make me wonder if snot comes out the poke hole when the guy gets a cold. Also, birds? Really? Yes. Birds.

The music part seems good, if you like that sort of thing. It has notes and a guitar and maybe some chimes. Fine fine. LOVE his voice. Very pleasing. But I don’t; like the video SO I found this video that just has the WORDS. Which is the killer part.

Oh, The Words. The words are NOT moopy but genuinely sort of religiously muddled and deeply wrecked and sexy.

I love the words so much I could pretty much dispense with the note parts. Call it a poem, and let’s get J.E.J. as Mufasa to come looming out of an animated sky and read it to me over and over in his mellifluous deep LION VOICE while I try today for the 900th time to find the words that will catch the rhythm of the shattering undersex that is happening beneath the actual mechanics, and have the words make it so, make it make sense, make me and you and anyone who reads this scene understand why, today, this day, this person touching that one MATTERS SO DAMN MUCH.

Sex is so powerful. People forget, I think, because we treat it like snack food and ruin it. It isn’t snack food. It’s big time, serious mojo. It’s sacred.

Simba, go get your mother. These are not exactly father to son style advice lyrics.

There’s something about this song that understands that sex can be a red hot mess, chock full of God and biology, and if it isn’t, you might be doing it wrong. This song makes me actually WANT to write a pair of very difficult, conflicted people into their here-to-fore impossible sex scenes.

Do you see how DESPERATELY hard I am trying here not to use the “I” word? I like a song, is how I want to say it. “Inspire” in my mouth tastes like one of those pre-ten-shusly preshsus writerly I-fart-genius words like “muse” I try to avoid in order to be able to look myself in the eye in the morning.

I LIKE A SONG, OKAY? I am going to put it on my i pod on repeat and go back and open MS word and enter, once again, into that damn sun-covered relentless bedroom with Lawrence and Ginny and try, one more freaking time, to Get. It. Down.

28 comments to Crazy Farm Box, Winter Edition. And Some Sex.

  • Aimee

    I really like that song too. My husband and I heard it on the radio, and yeah, it’s really sexy without being OVERT or BIOLOGICAL. I like it.

    Looking forward to what you have to say about music and writing. Our scripts are often written with soundtracks, songs that capture the mood and help us get to the emotion of a scene.

  • Michelle M.

    love this song and I love the video with just the words, they should try this with more songs. At least then, I’d know I’m getting the lyrics right. Now, go on with your bad self and write that sex scene

  • Michelle M.

    I forgot, do you get the turnip greens along with the turnips? I love turnip greens and you can cut up some of the turnips in them.

  • Dani

    I was already excited about this book, because, well, I love reading your books. But now, since one of my favorite songs is in your head while you’re writing one of the scenes, I’m SUPER excited!

  • Lori B.

    I love this song. It works on so many levels. The first time I heard it was at a girls’ sewing weekend, where we sew all weekend while listening to satellite radio (we also eat lots of yummy food and drink wine, too). After hearing this song for the umpteenth time, I mentioned how much I like it. I’m pretty conservative, so one friend – who is decidedly not conservative – looked up, cocked an eyebrow and smirkily asked if I knew what it was about. I smiled sweetly and told her of course I did and that was why I liked it. As far as I’m concerned, there’s nothing better than red hot monogomy. But writing about it? That would be quite a feat. Good luck and may the song be with you.

  • Well. . .I’m at least glad to know I’m doing it right. 🙂 Can’t wait for the book. Loved the video–haven’t seen the one with birds and torsos and moopiness (I think after this next book, you should write your own dictionary for words you make up and or frequently use), so this one was PERFECT. Like a really cool Wordle.

  • Jennifer

    Sugarland does a GREAT cover of that song. It’s one of the most played on my iPod. Yay for liking a song, you have to start somewhere.

  • Donna

    Matt Nathanson has obviously done it up right once or twice. He’s got some other really nice stuff. Plug him into Pandora and other good things come out too. There’s a song you should try that I think is about the flipside of this one–the guilt of really good sex–called My Sweet Charade by Stephen Kellogg and the Sixers.

  • Reb

    Could some kind soul whose computer’s behaving and will let her get youtube please post the NAME of that song? Then I could google the lyrics. Pretty please? Curiosity is not my friend.

    On the turnip, have you tried eating it raw with salad dressing? I hate, hate, hate it cooked but quite like it raw. Also, healthier. Failing that, I reckon you could cook carrot cake with turnip instead of carrot. It works with zucchini; I don’t see why it wouldn’t work with turnip.

  • Brigitte

    Maybe those local lawn goats like turnips.

  • Michelle-who-is-Shelley

    Love the song for the same reason you do — THE WORDS. I agree with Jennifer (above) — Jennifer Nettles of Sugarland sings the song much better. Here is a link to a word video of her version. The pictured words aren’t as pretty as they are in your video, but she is SOUTHERN, so maybe that will help a bit. . . .

  • Michelle-who-is-Shelley

    I just read Reb’s comment — the song is called “Come On Get Higher”.

  • Awww. I saw Matt Nathanson open for Tori Amos a few years ago and I found him delightfully charming. He did this song that night and I really liked it (and I loved one other one that…now I can’t remember). Good memories. 🙂

  • Aimee

    BTW, turnips mashed up with carrots are really excellent. The sweetness of the carrots cuts the turnip taste, and if you mash them with butter and a little cinnamon? Delicious.

  • Anna

    Roasted turnips are really good as part of a roasted root vegetable kind of mix. Cut up a bunch of them: carrots, turnips, red skinned potatoes, drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt and roast in the oven.

    Also, you write some of the loveliest good sex scenes EVER! Hmmm, I mean that in a non skeevy way, of course. But the one towards the end of TGWSS? So beautiful and spiritual and authentic.

  • I just finished rereading one of my favorite books of all time, Summer People, by Marge Piercy. She definitely uses sex to move the story line forward, but in an amazing, non specific sort of way…also, she’s not Southern fiction so reading her wouldn’t mess with your voice while drafting or revising. Piercy also has my absolute favorite description of the way that good sex can open up your heart to your partner even if your brain hasn’t quuuite decided if this is a good idea yet.

  • Mit

    Sauteed turnips that are caramelized/glazed. WAY yum! And not a whole stick of butter. Only 2Tbs! Glazed Turnips

  • Haley

    Like you, I do not like songs much. I am not that big a fan of music, but most people freak out when I say that. I have a few CDs I listen to in the car, but that is about it. I do not need music in all aspects of my daily life like most people I know. If asked to pick a favorite song, I usually hesitate and respond with the “I don’t like music” answer. People gasp. Whatever.

    When it becomes necessary for me to write sex, I read other books’ sex scenes as references and am tempted to plagiarize; I am that bad. I usually find a way not to write sex. I wonder if this will make people think I am a prude. I am not a prude, but there are only so many ways to describe the act of sex and they all sound terribly cliched to me. I am mostly tempted to just use the f word to prove I am not a prude and move on.

  • Haley

    P.S. In one of the Molly American girl books Molly refuses to eat her turnips and her Mom puts a bit of butter (not that much, I don’t think) and cinnamon in them. I don’t know if I have the book anymore because it’s been a LONG time, but I will look and see if I can find it to pass along the description of these fictional turnips.

  • Judy M

    Thepioneerwoman.com has an excellent recipe for turnip gratin in the holiday recipes under Thanksgiving. Also, WP Rawls Farms, a local farm in SC has recipes for greens on its website, WPRawl.com.

  • Ooh yes, great song! And I love the previous commenter’s phrase about “red hot monogamy”. That’s what I’m holding out for, baby! 😉

  • Um, actually (nerd moment), since pumpkins are indigenous to the Americas, the original Irish Halloween celebrants didn’t have them available for carving scary faces into to scare off the demons. Instead they used turnips. I think turnips are much better for demon-scaring than for eating.

  • Purrmah

    Yep. Turnip lanterns. Srsly. Even Martha Stewart has them:

  • Erika

    I’m a rock music kind of girl, but somehow this song snuck its way into one of my Pandora stations and I have been in LOVE with it ever since.

    Haley– Any time someone mentions turnips, I remember that Molly story!

  • jeanette

    OK, after reading the blog, I was interested in the comments. NEVER would I have expected quite so many of them to be about the TURNIPS. REALLY????? Just the fact that people know so many ways to dusguise a turnip or to sort of turn it into something minimally tolerable makes me realize that I hope I never ever ever have to eat a turnip! Are they worse than eggplant??

  • susiemermaid

    @jeanette: Ya – so much worse. Peh. At least eggplant doesn’t have to be a bitter nightmare.