May 13, 2005

But I was Mad, Though, Is Why

It wasn't that bad. I speak in the TEENIEST bit of hyperbole sometimes. The spider? He probably really only contained enough spider material to make three good sized garden spiders. Three and a half, tops. And probably the hotel is not so much VERMIN INFESTED as having construction, so that the banging and and the spider showing up in my room were related facets of a single, unavoidable problem. And the fact that some construction workers did not come when they heard a woman POSSIBLY BEING DISMEMBERED can not be blamed on the hotel, because I doubt they hired the construction company by checking to see which one had captured the MOST axe murderes.

As for the door man---it really WAS my fault. I have forgotten how to speak CHICAGO. And HE never had any idea of how to speak GEORGIA. Had I gone up to him and said, directly, "May I please have a ride to the gym," I bet he would have gotten me one. However, I am PHYSICALLY INCAPABLE OF SAYING THAT. Because that, see, would be asking directly for what I wantslashneed. And um, I would sooner eat my own intestines. SO what happened was, I went down and tried to INDICATE, indirectly and politely, that he should probably get a car for me.

What I said: How far is it to the gym? Do I need a ride or can I walk?
What I meant: I need a ride to the gym.
What he heard: How far is it to the gym? Do I need a ride or can I walk?
What he answered: It's only about six blocks. You can walk it easily in under ten minutes.
What I heard him say: I am busy and important.

What I said: Oh but, look! It is raining.
What I meant: I need a ride to the gym.
What he heard: Oh but, look! It is raining.
What he answered: It's not raining hard.
What I heard him say: You are bothering me.

What I said: Is it very cold? I don't have a coat with me, or an umbrella. Everyone out there looks to be in big overcoats.
What I meant: I need a ride to the gym.
What he heard: But I don't have a coat with me, or an umbrella. Everyone out there looks to be in big overcoats.
What he said: Well, I am not sure how cold it is. Probably not too cold. Just go outside and walk a little and see if it is too cold. You can always come back.
What I heard: Please go away. And PS, I hope you get frostbite and die.

And IN GEORGIA that IS what he would have meant. BUT SEE, I was in Chicago. I remember in grad school I had to LEARN TO SPEAK A WHOLE NOTHER LANGUAGE practically, because people would ask me to serve on committees or come to meetings and I would answer with words that seemed to me to be a very clear, NO. Not just NO, but more like, NO NO NO AND NO AND PS THE DEMONS OF SEVENTH LEVEL HELL WILL OPEN LEMONADE STANDS TO COOL THE TONGUES OF THE DAMNED BEFORE THAT COMES TO PASS. But what the CHICAGO-ANS would hear would be, "Yes, please, I would love to." SO. I just forgot.

AND ANYWAY NOW I AM IN VERMONT staying at the VERT BEST HOTEL EVER. It is called 1811 house and you should come stay here. It's a BandB but not RELENTLESSLY FLORAL. It's PRETTY and UNDERSTATED and LOVELY. This is a B and B that the Gilmore Girls WOULD stay at and ENJOY and I think I may just LIVE here.

And tomorrow is NORTHSHIRE (awesome bookstore) and OUTLET SHOPPING with my friend Mir which MAY be either FUN or WAR because it is ALL about shoes, on this we agree, but we may come to blows over the kitten heel v/s the wedge. She is a pointy toe afficionada and I am all about the ankle strap. It could get UGLY.

ALSO! THE WARNER REP is coming and bringing me a NEW ARC of WIDOW OF THE SOUTH and soon I will go home and I have SO MUCH TO READ! OH OH the BOOKS omg. Every place I go I am meeting HANDSELLERS, right? And I am a BIG junkie and now I have books scattered across my house like ORPHANS. Orphans with feet who move themseleves around. The worst sorts of well-fed, roving orphans who seem to move themselves all over my house---Dickens wouldn't have saved a one of them, they NEVER sit still and say PLEASE MAY I HAVE SOME MORE. They WANDER. I wil never find the one I want to read when I want to read it, so. I will have to have THE GREAT BOOK RE-ORG when I get home and...YIKES that will take forever. SO, I won't go home. I will just live here at 1811 house which has CHOCOLATE and an HONOR BAR and NO SPIDERS. Yay.

Posted by joshilyn at May 13, 2005 11:33 PM

Ankle strap?? But... but... STUMPY! Leg-dissecting! And if you don't believe in the pointy toe I may drive RIGHT PAST THE 1811 HOUSE MISSY!!

Smooches... see you soon. :)

Posted by: Mir at May 14, 2005 7:43 AM

You didn't complain to the Hateitwithvim Hotel management, did you? SIGH. Your head will not explode if you stand up for yourself, sweetie.

SO JEALOUS of Mir right now. Have a wonderful time - how about a pointy-toed-with-an-ankle-strap compromise?

Posted by: Amy at May 14, 2005 9:16 AM

PHEW I'm glad you're having a better day than yesterday in Chicago....I got all verklempt worrying about you. Vermont is adorable, no? The whole state is adorable. And are you going to that wonderful bookstore in Montpelier that is a half block from the statehouse? They have a SHOP CAT. Bookstores with SHOP CATS are the bomb.

Posted by: Jilly at May 14, 2005 9:18 AM

EEEEEEEEEEEEE! I forgot!! I was innocently watching TV yesterday and suddenly THERE YOU WERE! Or rather, there was the commercial for gods! Which I had heard only unconfirmed rumors about! And I screamed and danced about! And then I Tivoed it and made Kevin watch it the minute he walked in the door! And we both think you are VERY COOL. :)

Posted by: Amy at May 14, 2005 9:21 AM

kitten heel: YES!!
wedge: no
pointy toe: yes (but I like the rounded ones too)
ankle strap: only if you have super-model legs...for those of us with mere-mortal legs, I've gotta go with Mir on the stumpy thing

It's all about the shoes, baby! :-)

(Glad you got the Good Hotel this time, so things will go smoothly and you don't have to learn to speak Vermont.)

Posted by: DebR at May 14, 2005 10:38 AM

A chocolate honor bar? One visit from me, and they'd probably have to abandon that system.

P.S. I laughed out loud at your Southern to Chicago translations.

Posted by: katie at May 15, 2005 10:44 AM

LOL! I can SO relate to the Southern vs. Chicago-speak. The biggest rows I've had with my husband were over things I "asked" for (and in one case, "insisted" and "begged") but which he ignored. He speaks New Yawk, and I speak...hmm, not sure what to call it. I'm from Phoenix, but I learned it from my Indiana mother. My ancestors left North Carolina in 1813, so surely it isn't Southern, unless it came from the line that was in Kentucky as late as the 1850s. But it sounds an awful lot like Southern.

Oh, and I agree with Mr. Husband. Go for the ankle-straps. You've got the legs!

Posted by: Katrina at May 15, 2005 11:14 AM

I didn't know you were coming to Vermont!! I LIVE in Vermont!! I had The Day Off!!! I could have seen you and admired the new shoes! And heard all about gods....
That'll teach me to pay more attention to posted schedules....
Hope you had a good time

Posted by: Gayle at May 15, 2005 7:27 PM

OH! Poor orhpans! I can adopt some of them. You just send them to auntie Heather. ;)

Posted by: Heather at May 15, 2005 11:17 PM

But, did you stay in the Burr room? Just seems appropriate with your book and all. Just sayin'.

Posted by: Peek at May 16, 2005 2:31 PM

Okay, I grew up in Georgia as well, but I escaped when I was 26. It took living in London, Colorado, and, most importantly, Boston, for me to learn to cut the "I'm a sweet brainless Southerner who can't ask for what she needs because it's bad manners" crap. You can do it too! It just takes practice--like the first time you looked in the mirror and said, "I'm a writer. I'm a writer." (I know that you did--I did it for years before I could say it to a live person without dissolving into self-conscious giggles). Here's a trick: with your Southern girlfriends, try repeating back to them inane hints they make: i.e., "What do you think of those shoes?" You say, "Are you really asking me what I think of those shoes or are you telling me you like those shoes?" Good luck and best wishes.

Posted by: Edgy Mama at May 16, 2005 3:26 PM

Saw the ad in PEOPLE. Very cool.

Posted by: dlfp at May 16, 2005 4:44 PM