February 28, 2008

The Very Very Very Good, The Very Very Very Bad, and the Comely

The v v v good was that yesterday, every STINKING time I tried to sink into bleak depression over turning 40---and Oh Beloveds, I DID give it MANY righteous tries!---I would come back to Kudzu and find more REALLY kind-hearted and funny comments (THANK YOU!!!!), or the phone would ring and some relative or friend would SING the Traditional Many Happy Returns of the Day song, OR the doorbell would ring, and a delivery man would hand me a package full of prizes---I got books and books and more books and a DVR recorder --- and four times a man came bearing glass bowls or baskets filled with beautiful cat salads:


Those cat salad chefs are true artisans! They are SO dedicated to presenting a LOVELY plate that it is almost as if they think LOOKING at the things was as important as EATING them! Can you guess what my favorite flower is? Hint: Slightly Nibbled Gerber Daisies. I sure hope they are not poisonous. My whole downstairs smells like a meadow. It’s AWESOME.

I also got about 50 billion funny e-cards and e-mails and NOT ONE OF THEM contained a sour joke about being old that wasn’t funny in 1000 B.C. when it was first grunted and clicked by cavemen and is still not funny now. NOT ONE! I have classy friends! AND then came a HEART LIFTING present from Seattle Mystery Bookshop, as they prepped for my tour stop WAY beyond the call of duty. PEEP THIS DISPLAY:


Hee. Not only is it awesome, but…Did you notice I am sitting by Laura Lippman? I SURE DID. HEART! SPARKLE! DIAMOND!

Turning 40 was, to sum up, ALMOST bearable, and I thought I would get through the dire day with marching delight and parade-level triumph, and I felt that way all day, right up until the police came.
Yes. The police.
No. I am not kidding.
The cop was holding a pile of spooky and official looking papers.

To understand how truly NERVEWRACKING this was, and for those of you joining us LATE, you need to know I was Wrongfully Arrested by the Austell police department and perp walked in cuffs down the busiest street in MY VERY SMALL TOWN, all due to the Patriot Act combining with a FILING error on the part of the Social Security office and the DMV and LAST WEEK my GLORIOUS LAWYER finished the process that got my record expunged and cleared my name.

SO. I have been a non criminal for only a very short time when this cop shows up. I go to the door and peep out. I am wearing my work out clothes and I smell like a mule, as I just got off the elliptical. Super!

Cop: Good afternoon, Ma’am. Are you Joshilyn Jackson?

Me: *hesitant* Um…yes?

Cop: I'm Officer K. Johnson with the Austell Police Department.


Cop: We recently received a court order to expunge your record, but unfortunately there still seems to be some sort of discrepency. May I come in?

Me: Let’s juuuust talk here on the porch.

I am trying to remember if I have my lawyer;’s phone programmed into my cell, which is in my hand, so it can go BACK TO JAIL WITH ME if I am going BACK TO JAIL. I am thinking “YOU WILL NEVER TAKE ME ALIVE COPPER!!!!”

Cop: Of course. On behalf of the Patriot Act, and under the authority of the Office of Homeland Security and the nodding Encephalopod, I regret to inform you that…you look at least TEN YEARS YOUNGER THAN 40. HAPPY BIRTHDAY FROM Karen Abbott, Sara Gruen and
Renee Rosen!!

Then he reaches sideways, grabs a FRICKETTY BOOM BOX, strikes up the Sexyback, RIPS his cop shirt off and starts humping around on my porch in a skin-tight wifebeater and pants that I NOW see have Velcro seams.

I basically turned beet red and fell down on the ground on DIED. Then I bounced up JUST in time to STOP HIM FROM TAKING HIS PANTS OFF. Because, BELOVEDS, 1) it was THIRTY-ONE DEGREES OUT THERE, and 2) I REALLY did not want him to take his pants off. REALLY. Not that he was not a comely fake cop. He was, ackshully, quite comely and he looked as if he spent non-naked-cop hours mostly in the gym, but, as a GENERAL RULE, I TRULY prefer for the men on my porch to have pants. Just saying. And I take back what I said earlier about having classy friends. *grin*

SO that was forty, and if the cats do not stop eating my flowers I am going to DISMEMBER them and mail the legs to Karen and Sara and Renee as a thank you. Whew. If this is what happens when I turn 40, I find I may actually be looking forward to 50.

Posted by joshilyn at February 28, 2008 7:00 AM

THAT is the funniest thing I've heard in ages! You should have just let the poor guy come on in the house and then you could have died of embarrassment in the privacy of your own home!!

Posted by: Leandra at February 28, 2008 9:18 AM

Dear God, woman, let the man in! He was a police officer (or sort of??) Have any nosy neighbors?

Posted by: Therese at February 28, 2008 9:20 AM


Posted by: marlaroo at February 28, 2008 9:41 AM

Oh, to have been there....

Posted by: Jan in Norman, OK at February 28, 2008 9:50 AM

Best friends ever! You totally deserved a fantastic birthday, and I hope the feeling extends through the whole year!

Posted by: Jen at February 28, 2008 9:50 AM

Karen, Renee, Sara: I worship at the feet of your awesomeness. I believe we are kindred spirits. We should definitely meet.

And dudes. Get my number from Joss. Because I would totally chip in on this type of shenanigan.

Posted by: Amy-Go at February 28, 2008 9:54 AM

And those are the kind of friends that are Keepers!

(and wouldn't you love to hear the what the nosy neighbours were thinking?)

Posted by: kim at February 28, 2008 9:59 AM

Okay, I just snorted hot chocolate all over myself.

That is JUST too funny!

Posted by: City Girl at February 28, 2008 10:21 AM

The nodding Encephalopod! That is just fantastic. You GO, Karen, Sara and Renee.

Posted by: Aimee at February 28, 2008 10:39 AM


I am SO BUMMED I don't live in Seattle!

Posted by: daysgoby at February 28, 2008 10:52 AM

See how good you are at telling stories? I was positive something bad happened. Thank goodness it was only a naked cop.

By the way, I am married to a cop and haven't ever had a naked one on my porch so I'm just a little jealous (and thinking about what I want for my 40th bd ;-)

Posted by: Em at February 28, 2008 11:12 AM

Best birthday present evah. You have great friends!

Posted by: Keetha at February 28, 2008 11:22 AM


Posted by: Mir at February 28, 2008 11:36 AM

That was hilarious!! Thank you Karen, Sara and Renee!! And, you, Joshilyn, for sharing in your inimitable style. Happy birthday a day late, and hope that the happy continues for a long, long time!

Posted by: Deborah P at February 28, 2008 11:41 AM

THAT is the best birthday ever!

Posted by: Lindsey at February 28, 2008 12:33 PM

What awesome friends! Soooo funny!

Posted by: Alison at February 28, 2008 12:44 PM

See? They just proved how very, very young you are, because you didn't have a heart attack right there on the porch, either from the authoritative scare OR the spontaneous pants removal. I love their diabolical minds, your friends.

Posted by: amy at February 28, 2008 1:49 PM

Can't you just picture the guy before he left on this gig: "Nodding encephalowhat?"

Posted by: Carrie at February 28, 2008 2:00 PM

Happy Birthday! Also, congratulations on being in the March issue of BookPage (p.5)

Posted by: Kristin at February 28, 2008 5:14 PM

i hope someone was in the bushes with a video camera!!!

Posted by: dramamama at February 28, 2008 6:28 PM

*laugh* Best. Friends. Ever!!!!!

Also: I got my copy of TGWSS in the mail from Amazon yesterday, and have since consumed it, and it is WONDERFUL!!!!! You are amazing :-D

Posted by: Jessie at February 28, 2008 7:44 PM

You have such thoughtful friends!

Turns out baby's breath makes cats throw up. Who knew? Not me--not until this Valentine's Day, at least.

Posted by: Caryn at February 28, 2008 8:02 PM

Totally wasn't seeing that coming! BUT...no photo of that portion of the birthday festivities! ;-) Happy Birthday and congrats on the book!

Posted by: Miriam at February 28, 2008 9:09 PM

I found TGWSS in a store that rhymes with "Hoarders" tonight even though their computer denied emphatically that the book had been released. Just thought the BBs might want to know.

Posted by: JulieB at February 28, 2008 11:56 PM

Oh mi god that is too incredibly funny. I love it.

BTW 50 wasn't too bad. I survived, and so did everyone around me.

Happy Birthday, Joss.

Posted by: Cele at February 29, 2008 1:32 AM

Too hilarious! At least he pronounced "encephalopod" correctly.

Maybe it's just as well you left him on the porch, it would feel rather awkward shut up in your house alone with a nekked-cop-dancer once he's finished his dance . . .

Posted by: Brigitte at February 29, 2008 5:31 AM

I hope you will enjoy many more birthdays after this one. I loved my 40th birthday and now eagerly await my 41st in a couple of weeks. Happy Belated Birthday from a fellow 40 year old!!

Posted by: Laura K at February 29, 2008 10:56 AM

Oh you have the best friends ever! Happy Happy Birthday! And what beautiful cat salads - Enjoy!

Posted by: JenniferG at February 29, 2008 11:19 AM

And where were the pictures of that... hmmmm?

Posted by: Heather Cook at February 29, 2008 1:00 PM

Karen, Sara and Renee ARE THE BEST.
That was CLASSIC. I only wish one of them had hidden in the bushes and caught it on video.

BTW my 45th is coming up in March and I have a *thing* for men in uniform... just saying.

Posted by: lindasands at February 29, 2008 2:12 PM

That. Was. Awesome. Glad you had a good birthday, Jos! :)

Posted by: Andrea at February 29, 2008 3:58 PM

So, are you regretting leaving him out in the cold?
And his name, Officer K. _Johnson_??? Riiight. (What might the K stand for?)

You, March 11, in Seattle??? Damn this working for a living. I can't take off midweek to drive across the state to fawn and worship. And get yer autograph. But maybe the Kid can appear - he already lives over there. I'll make him wear his uniform. Don't worry I'm pretty sure he's too shy to take his pants off in public. ;-)

Posted by: Lulu at February 29, 2008 5:21 PM

OH happy birthday. I'm sorry I'm so late with the the greetings. But you got a stripper so nothing I could say would top that. :)

Happy trip. :)

Posted by: carrien at February 29, 2008 11:26 PM

Happy belated birthday!! That is absolutely the best. present. ever. I was all horror-struck in sympathy right along with you until the reveal.

And I was all happy about moving to Vancouver until now, when I realize that no longer living in Seattle means that I don't get to just drive across town and see you in person (not to mention communing with all your other fans) on the 11th. Rats. Dang. Phooey.

But it is a fine town and you will have a fine time. Especially now that you are 40.

Posted by: elswhere at March 3, 2008 11:24 PM

I told Husband about the cat salad, and the dismembering thing, and he said to watch out for the Cat Mafia, making threats like that!

Posted by: Judy at March 8, 2008 11:58 AM