May 30, 2005

20 Days of Virtue (and Wedding Pics)

I could find any GOOD pics of just the flowers. The pictures were all clotted up with PEOPLE.

But here is a great shot of my bouquet as Scott and I walk out. HE LOOKS SO YOUNG --- PRACTICALLY FETAL. We are only an egg.

And here is a nice shot of one of the table arrangements beside our cake. That's a poured fondant icing, which looks stunning and smooth but tastes like wet cement mixed with sugar. But we picked a preternaturally moist, dense Amaretto pound cake, rife with liqueur and butterfat, so the idea was you peeled the cement away and ate the cake plain. Excuse me, but it ROCKED.

And here we are going away... I really like this picture because I look equal parts happy and demented, and that's...kinda accurate. We left in a vintage Rolls because I said I thought limos were tacky (I still do, to be honest), and I always feel so sorry for carriage-for-hire horses. They oftentimes have sad lives. We went to a VERY nice hotel to stay before leaving on our honeymoon the next day, and when we arrived, we found out the gay bar down the street was hosting some sort of BEACH MAN HUNKA HUNKA SHOOTERS weekend. It was an annual event of long standing, and it was HUGE! The entire hotel---lobby and bar and hallways and mezzanine --- was PACKED TO THE ROOF with cheerful, rowdy, happy-to-be-out-of-town gay men, each one drunker than the last. I suspect I was the ONLY female guest in the entire hotel.

They thought we were amusing. And the next morning, when we got up, my brother and his cronies had JUST MARRIED our car to DEATH, and the gay men were all STILL UP FROM THE NIGHT BEFORE and even DRUNKER, and we got upgraded from amusing to hysterical. They pretended to throw rice and waived and hooted us on as we ran laughing for the car and buzzed off for New Orleans, where naturally everyone was much more DECOROUS and SOBER. Because New orleans is just that sort of town, you know, an extended-pinky-finger TEA TIME sort of town. Which is, of course, why we picked it. There we attended symposiums and rousing lectures about Sarte. You know, typical honeymoon stuff.

But that was then, and this is now, and NOW is all about TWENTY DAYS OF VIRTUE. You are invited to participate, if you like! For twenty days I am REALLY limiting sugar (including adult beverages! eep!) and other simple carbohydrates. I'm a whole wheat pasta, brown rice, whole grain organic couscous kind of a girl ANYWAY usually, but those SOFT FLUFFY BREADS (And cakes! And pastries! And delightful crunchiferous crackers!) crept into my diet on tour, and now all my clothes are snug through the butt-ular area and I am irritated and displeased. SO. If you want to do this with me, PLEASE DO. FOr the next 20 days, I will give a twenty days of virtue progress report at the end of the blog. And you can report in comments, SO YOU ARE ACCOUNTABLE! COME ON. YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO.

No long term commitment! Just 20 days of solid virtue, ending in better fitting clothes, but more importantly, in better HABITS. You will retrain yourself in 20 days, see if you do not! I am making Scott do it, too, for the health of his good, big heart and because I DO NOT WISH TO SUFFER ALONE, and that is where you come in, oh my lovely internet dumplings! Let's support each other through the next hellish red-wine-and-heavy-cream free days.

Behold, the plan:
TWENTY DAYS OF VIRTUE!

Water: My goal is 64 ounces per day. A good minimum goal would be 48 ounces.

Exercise: I'm a big endophin junky and worked out at least 4 times a week while on tour, but this is not enough for me and I feel flappy and gelatinous. SO for me, the goal is a DAILY 30 minutes of cardio followed by 30 minutes of weight training. Supplemented by Tennis (read; Aim Ball) and skating as the weather allows, 2 - 3 times a week. If you are a sedentary person, I suggest a 20 minute walk every day for a starter. THis seems safe, and then you add 5 minutes every week. Of course, I am not a doctor, so do not blame me if you go 17 minutes and then suddenly drop dead.

Breakfast:
Cup of coffee with Potentially Deadly Chemicals (instead of sugar)
WHOLE GRAIN, high fiber, low sugar cereal with fruit and 1% milk. (I like to mix Uncle Sam's and GrapeNuts and then top it off with a little Mueslix and some extra raisins or half a banana.)

Snack: 'Nother cup of coffee and either a mozzarella cheese stick or half an avocado or a small handful of nuts or FRESH spinach sauteed in olive oil with a metric ton of garlic or FRESH broc sauteed in olive oil with a few walnuts.

Lunch: A Lean Cuisine Spa Cuisine Frozen Dinner (The spa cuisine ones are whole grains---avoid any other kind.) OR make your own lunch but UGH. How many meals do you want to have to fix in a day? YISH. Plus you can take these to any work place with a microwave. EASY!

Snack: One of the things listed in snacks earlier, or a small bowl of air popped (or low fat microwaved) popcorn. I like to spray it with a little BUTTER FLAVORED SPRAY (just to get it sticky) and then sprinkle parmesan cheese on it. Or if you are a nasty sort of person who actually LIKES that MICROSCOPIC WEEVIL INFESTED, SOUR SMELLING, REPUGANT GOO, you could have a yogurt. Scott says Dannon Light and Fit is a good pick. But UGH. DO not come within 50 feet of me until you have brushed your teeth!

Dinner: A GIANT SALAD with meat in it. We grill steak or chicken or shrimp or salmon OR in a pinch use pouch tuna OR we skip the meat and add a ton of black beans and mozzarella cheese. No croutons. Avoid CREAMY dressings. Paul Newman makes an AWESOME Balsamic Vinagrette that is not too dear and it's paul so the profits go to charity.

Night Snack: I can't live without chocolate, so I will be having a little dessert every night. I think I am just going to get those weight watchers frozen desserts because they come in SMALL SERVINGS and if I made cookies or a cake to eat a little every night, I will just eat it until it is gone ion three days. *burp* SO. Or I will have a york peppermint patty here. Just a little 175 or so calorie DELIGHTFUL SOMETHING that lets me, you know, retain the will to live.

IF YOU WATCH YOUR PORTION SIZES (Web MD Explains Portion Sizes well!) this works out to about 1500 calories a day, plenty of veggies and good fats and good carbs, a nice amount of lean protein, and it is SIMPLE, same-same every day which would be miserable to do for 100 years but this is....twenty days. Of virtue. SO. JOIN ME! C'mon!!!!

I will put the virtue report at the bottom until the 20 days is over...This holds me accountable. IF I do all twenty days of virtue, I will ALLOW MYSELF TO BUY THESE FANTASTIC SHOES!

newsandals.jpeg

Except I accidentally already bought them today. OOPS! So I better not mess up.

Posted by joshilyn at 4:14 PM | Comments (14)

May 29, 2005

100 Things About Mr. Husband

1) He's tall. I can wear any heel I like and he is still taller.
2) He has big, thick arm bones, so I cannot get my fingers to meet or even yell "Hello" each other if I grab his wrist, and at the end of them, he has giant hants, like oven mitts. They are big, square hands with blunt-tipped fingers, and they are high on my list of "favorite husband pieces." They look like blacksmith's hands.
3) But he can do close magic with them, and finesse a quarter directly from the nostril of a big-eyed six year old.
4) We met because of theatre.
5) I was an actor, but he acted and stage managed and designed lights and ran lights and built mighty sets with his blacksmith's hands.
6) We were just friends for seven years.
7) The first time we really really for really real kissed, we were outside, it was late in the night, and it was cold out. The air had that apple-clean bite to it. Now whenever the air gets crisp like that, I feel happy.
8) He's a good kisser.
9) He can build furniture.
10) When our babies were little-tiny and upset, he would drape them belly-down over his forearm with their heads in his palm and walk them up and down the hall until they stopped being unhappy.
11) He is a pool shark.
12) He has won bar tournaments and has his own cue that screws together.
13) About two years ago he took it into his head to grow a beard.
14) I was against it.
15) Then I decided it was hot.
16) A few months ago he shaved it off and I was against him shaving it off and remained against it.
17) He put it back.
18) He usually lets me have my way.
19) Except when I am clearly wrong. Like when he wanted to grow the beard in the first place.
20) Or when he feels strongly about something. Then I let him have his way.
21) He has never, no never, no never never never, not once, never lost his temper and been genuinely angry with me.
22) Seriously.
23) He has been exasperated, grumpy, impatient, irritated, and dismissive a few times, but never no never never not even once has he lost his temper with me.
24) In fact, I can count on one had the number of times I have seen him genuinely lose his temper with ANYONE.
25) And I would not need my thumb.
26) Or my pinky.
25) It is scary. He gets very silent, and very still, and all the air around him gets so ice-cold that it could shatter glass, and he speaks in a this very deep, deliberate voice, and little animals for MILES around smell doom in the air and go leaping up trees and down holes.
26) If he ever does actually for really genuinely lose his temper with me, I will probably fall over immediately dead.
27) He claims he doesn't think I am high maintenance.
28) I have met EVERY girlfriend he ever had, except a couple of high school ones.
29) They were ALL high maintenance.
30) I have never seen him sit down and watch an entire sporting event.
31) He has freakishly good hand-eye co-ordination.
32) Once I knocked a glass off the kitchen counter, like REALLY gave it a good whang, and it went hurtling to its doom and he swooped at it in one smooth, long swoop and caught it.
33) Once a mouse was running across the kitchen floor and he picked up a tupperware bowl and threw it like a Frisbee and caught the mouse under it perfectly.
34) Didn't even hurt the mouse.
35) I threw the bowl out though.
36) He often forgets Valentine's day.
37) He doesn't forget my birthday, because it is two days after his.
38) He has never once forgotten Mother's Day.
39) One year, he forgot Valentine's Day, and I cried. The next year, he strung the kitchen with little pink, blinking lights and I got a festival of presents and he made me dinner. It was grilled meat.
40) The man is a wizard with meat and a grill.
41) He also makes the best scrambled eggs.
42) He cannot resist a pun.
43) He thinks I am pretty and says so.
44) I call him Flip or Flippert.
45) He calls me Joss.
46) Our handwriting is freakishly similar.
47) We forge each other's name on checks to deposit them.
48) Unless you work at my bank or for the IRS and this is illegal. Then, ha ha, I was only kidding.
49) I drove six hours to see him perform in Samuel Beckett's End Game.
50) He. Was. Amazing.
51) Seriously.
52) He doesn't drink.
53) He used to, but now even one glass of wine will often give him a headache.
54) Everyone thinks his eyes are brown, but if you get really, really close and look, they are a deep, clear green. Not a speck of brown in them.
55) Honey, you don't need to get really, really close and look. You can just TRUST me.
56) I meant it, trollop. Back off.
57) He reads Stephen J. Gould.
58) For fun.
59) Once when we were very young and stupid, he helped me steal a toilet.
60) He was not enthusiastic about the project.
61) He said we weren't even STEALING it, that someone had put it out on the curb in the hopes that someone else would haul it away, and that essentially we were not big dangerous international toilet thieves at all. We were more like, trash haulers.
62) I maintain to this day that we stole the toilet.
63) We put the toilet in my back yard, and my parents were singularly unamused.
64) A week or so later, a hurt crow showed up, unable to fly, and I nursed him back to health. Mr. Crow LOVED that toilet. LOVED it. He used it as a perch until his wing healed and he flew away, and every time Scott was over I would drag him to the backyard and point at the crow perched happily on the toilet and say, "SEE!?!?!?! SEE?!?!?!?!|"
65) He gives the best foot rubs in America.
66) His mom taught him how.
67) She told him she was doing his future wife a favor.
68) We need to send her flowers more often.
69) He reads mostly history and biography and philosophy and physics, so it is hard to find a novel he likes.
70) When I find one he can't put down, I feel very happy and satisfied.
71) He loves Bel Canto.
72) He loves gods in Alabama.
73) Once on the interstate, a terrible wreck began to happen just in front of us, and cars smashed into each other and crumpled, and I screamed and Sam was a baby in the backseat, and he drove right off the shoulder and safely into the grass and the car that was behind us even could not stop and ended up in the smashed pile-up.
75) He REALLY likes songs.
76) When he finds something interesting and I think it is hideously dull, like, say, CHAOS THEORY or THE HOOVER DAM, he gets antsy and restless until I let him tell me about it, and then he tries to convert me into being interested.
77) Sometimes, like with chaos theory, it turns out that it IS interesting, and I am glad he told me and I ask questions and end up reading about it, too.
78) Sometimes, like with the Hoover Dam...not so much.
79) He likes movies with Ninjas in them.
80) He has more identity tied up in his family then he does tied up in his career.
81) He can juggle.
82) His favorite color is green.
83) He becomes palpably excited when we get within two miles of a Home Depot.
84) On our honeymoon, we went to New Orleans.
85) We chartered a boat and spent one day fishing.
86) I caught none and he caught one---by which I mean, he accidentally hooked a minnow through the belly as it went past.
87) We saw an island where the baby herons were nesting, and he snuck me into someone's fishing shanty so I could pee.
88) We also went on the Honey Island Swamp Tour. And to the Zoo.
89) He likes to sleep, falls asleep easily, can sleep anywhere in any shape, and needs more sleep than me.
90) He will play computer ganes with me until two in the morning, sometimes.
91) He is very observent.
92) Neither of us can SPELL for crap.
93) When we got married, he pretty much let me have my way about everything re:the wedding, but he had opinions about the flowers. My mother thought it was a little odd. But he did, he had OPINIONS, so he went with us to order the flowers, and he was VERY anti-baby's breath, so I backed him on it, got all bridely and demanding when the florist boggled at the "no baby's breath" edict. They used Queen Anne's Lace instead, and people after could NOT shut up about the flowers. They kept saying how pretty and unusual they were, and no one could put a finger on it. But I knew why.
94) He's not a good dancer.
95) Once we did a play together, he must have been 21 or so, and he played Lenin. He had to wear a bald cap. He looked at himself in the mirror and said, "Behold, my genetic legacy. I will look like this for real before I am thirty."
96) He was right.
97) I thought he was cute in the bald cap, though. So it all worked out.
98) Eleven years ago yesterday, he foolishly, foolishly answered the priest in the affirmative, and got stuck with me for life.
99) I still like him.
100) I like him best.

Posted by joshilyn at 7:38 AM | Comments (19)

May 26, 2005

Boggle Ye With Me

First a CLARIFICATION: I am not unhappy to have 50,000 rowdy boys churning the air into butter in my basement. We picked our neighborhood because it had a PACK of roving boys playing kickball and etc in the cul de sacs EVERY TIME we drove through, and we picked our house in it because of the basement and the big pondy-froggy-turtle-y lot. Then we set up the downstairs with specific CHILD ATTRACTING equipment. As Sam gets older we will finish out the BIG BASEMENT ROOM and put in a MOVIE THEATRE and get rid of the KIDDIE POOL TABLE and put in a real one (Scott is PANTING to do this right now because he is a SHARK!) And I'll add a downstairs fridge and keep it stocked with cokes and popcorn and ice cream and strawberries and let Sam and Maisy pick the colors and put the old, comfy furniture and not care if it is utterly destroyed or permeated with the smell of adolescent boy feet. Because I want to be THE HOUSE. You know?

It is IMPORTANT to be THE HOUSE. There is ALWAYS a THE HOUSE. When Sam (and later Maisy) is a teenager, if it is 1 AM on a Friday night, and it becomes necessary to ask the question WHERE IS SAM, I want the answer to be, "IN MY BASEMENT WATCHING MOVIES AND SHOOTING POOL AND EATING FREE FOOD WITH A HERD OF HIS FRIENDS." Not, "At some other THE HOUSE, licking investigatively at a big block of heroin and fondling a hooker."

WELCOME BACK TO TRAVEL SANS MERCY!
I have been to, what, like 19 hotels in the last month? And you have ONLY heard about the 2 where I had bad things happen. SO. Let me say, the others were like Barbie's Dream House, all lofted ceilings and flat screen TVs with monstrously good cable and hot and cold running naked oiled cabana boys and crab cake room service and starbucks coffee free in the lobby....VERY nice hotels. NOT the sort of hotel where the bed has a slot for a quarter and if you put one in, the bed jiggles you for ten minutes. More like, the bed had a slot where you could feed it five dollar bills and it would play Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata for you. Maybe a little TOO good for a cotton and kudzu backwater rube-chick like me.

And even the bad experiences...they were NICE hotels. One was a very nice hotel, except it had an evil money-sucking exploitative restaurant manager who is going to be SO SORRY when he goes to hell and is thrown into a pile of burning credit cards to smolder eternally in the stink of melting plastic. One hotel was having a genuinely troubled day, what with the SPIDER and the MEAN PERSON and the CONSTRUCTION, but for the record I stayed at that SPIDER MEAN PERSON CONSTRUCTION hotel on the pre-tour and it was PERFECT. So.

I say all this to say: I am at an internet cafe FULL OF TEENAGE BOYS playing WarCraft. It's a pretty cool cafe...it is trying to be THE HOUSE and attract the kids here to avoid the heroin licking/hooker thing. It is NEXT TO and OWNED BY this cute little church, and it has FREE INTERNET,and a stage for BANDS and cheap coffee drinks and cookies and sammies. EVERYONE in here is 17 or under, except me, yet here I sit, listening to my FOURTH SOLID HOUR of contemporary Christian Music as I write this, and...wow. Four hours is a LOT OF CCM. HEH. But I WILL NOT GO NO NEVER NO NEVER because, are you ready for this??? The hotel where I am staying is EVIL.

Oh, it has a BAY VIEW and a DOWN COMFORTER and a HEATED indoor outdoor pool and a four star restauraunt...But...are you ready??? You are not. SIT DOWN and hold hands with someone comforting:
THE HOTEL HAS NO INTERNET CONNECTION.

Pause and boggle with me. NO. INTERNET. CONNECTION. That's right. I cannot get to you from there, nor you to me. IT IS CUT OFF! IT IS SILENT! IT IS A WIREFREE TOMB OF DOOM! I like me some internet in the same way I like me some oxygen...

I got there and the FIRST THING OUT OF MY MOUTH??? As per usual...

Me: How to I connect to the internet? Cable ro wireless?
Hotel Guy: Um, neither!
Me: *boggles at him* HA! HA! NO, BUT REALLY BECAUSE. UM. BUT REALLY WHICH?
Hotel Guy: Well, we have dial up.
Me: HA HA HA. Um What is dial up? THE PHONE THING with the WREEEEEE noise? Because um..*nervous tittering* you are scaring me. No really. HOW DO I CONNECT TO THE INTERNET???
Hotel Guy: You come back in 2006 when the 40 million dollar renovation is over and we have internet.
Me: *boggles*

SO I have spent the day here at Cafe CCM. I LOVE IT HERE. All the kids are looking at me all askance but HERE is good, and I do not MIND that this News Boys CD has played through 4 times now. BECAUSE THIS CAFE HAS YOU, OH MY BELOVED INTERNET! MY LOVELY VIRTUAL FRIENDS! MY POSSUMS, MY BLOSSOMS, OH MY BEST INVISIBLE BELOVEDS. I was SO lonely without you yesterday....But ALAS! My ride is coming to take me to the event, so I must post this and trail sadly away, back to a place with...with...*choked sobbing* NO CONNECTION!!!!!!!!!

Travel. Sans. Mercy.

Posted by joshilyn at 5:32 PM | Comments (11)

May 24, 2005

BZZZZZZZ!

I’m working, I’m working, I’m working.
Things are taking off and clicking here and I am fulfilled as a human.

I am happy! My brain is all bee-hivey and busy and my mental illness number is therefore down because I don’t have as much time to FRET about the little crap, like DOES THE SPLENDA I EAT A DAILY POUND OF SECRETLY CAUSE LEPROSY and HOW DID MY CAT GET SO DERN FAT IN ONE MONTH and DO TADPOLES CARRY DISEASE AND DOES THE POND WATER WE SCOOPED FOR THEM CONTAIN DISEASE OR EVEN JUST A HIGH CONCENTRATION OF FROG PEE?

Here is what I am doing this week:
1) Writing a great big heaping chunk of novel. Tra la!

2) Tracking down a certain back issue of Oxford American because I simply MUST own a copy of Michael Parker’s, “Hidden Meanings: Treatment of Time, Supreme Irony, and Life Experiences in the Song 'Aint Gonna Bump No More No Big Fat Woman'" which is a very GOOD short story pretending to be a very DREADFUL term paper. It is remarkably entertaining even if you have never taught college freshman English, and is PURELY SUBLIME if you have.

30 Micromanaging the cat's food consumption and trying to get Maisy to stop SNEAKING HIM KIBBLE. The situation is dire and i fear for his HEART! When he lies down, his tummy flattens against the floor and he becomes COMPLETELY ROUND, by which I mean his sides spread outward like a puddle when he settles, until he is LITERALLY as wide across as he is LONG. AND HE WAS LOOKING SO GOOD! AND WE HAD WORKED SO HARD!

3) Going back on the road for the LAST of the travels. Sans Mercy? BUT OF COURSE! Talk to you from the air!

Posted by joshilyn at 4:12 PM | Comments (7)

May 23, 2005

Good Omens and Budding Sociopaths

My neighborhood is over run by a pack of small, wild boys. They live in my basement, because WE have a POOL TABLE, and they forage for filth and victims in my backyard because WE have a POND. Well, not really a pond. We generously call it a POND, but it is really a piece of MUCK-RIDDEN FLOOD PLAIN.

Many fine things like to live in a muck-ridden flood plain, including turtles and tadpoles and worms and mosquitoes and the kind of adorable little brown bats who EAT mosquitoes: all thing guaranteed to attract wild boy-packs. I fear for the turtles because they are SLOWER than the boys. I have personally seen a nice box turtle being toted off by the pack, and I went out and said, ITS FINE TO WATCH THE TURTLE AND HERE IS LETTUCE AND TRY TO COAX IT OUT BUT YOU MUST PUT THE TURTLE BACK WHERE YOU FOUND HIM AND YOU MUST NOT POKE OR MOLEST OR PRY OR LICK TURTLES! THE LICKING BECAUSE THEY CARRY SALMONELLA AND WASH YOUR HANDS FOR THE LOVE OF GOD. OKAY? OKAY? And the little boys nodded and made YES MA'AM noises and walked off already licking the turtle surreptitiously and then the turtle was NEVER SEEN AGAIN. I suspect it is dying by agonizing inches in the turtle version of an abattoir (which we non-turtles know as "the garage in a house which contains a small boy").

Yesterday, two of the bigger boys caught a HOST of hapless tadpoles using ingenuity and Ziploc sandwich bags, and they distributed two pre-frogs to every member of the small boy populace, who NO DOUBT took them home and placed them in Tupperware with tap water where they promptly died, and isn't killing little animals one of the first SIGNS? Because if so, we are raising a FLEET of little serial killers here in my subdivision.

As for me and my house, we intercepted Sam before Death by Tap Water could be perpetrated, and decided that we are going to do tadpoles RIGHT. We are going to go to PET SMART later today and get tad-foods and a non-tupperware tad-tainer and use ONLY the water we salvage from the muck-ridde---I mean POND. And we shall be raising little taddies all the way up until they reach FROG or DEATH, whichever comes first, because I don't want to be the only house on my block where the torture of small woodland creatures is not sanctioned. Got to keep up with the Saddistic Jones Boy. OH WELL. At least our taddies will have a FIGHTING CHANCE. And at least it is EDUCATIONAL. There will be stages of the frog and support via internet research and learning and I TRULY hope two things:
That our frogs will live to be released.
And that our frogs are all the same sex.
Because there is educational, and then there is EDUCATIONAL.

I DO love living in the wilderness though, out here in the cotton and the kudzu...A couple of days ago, this came and sat on our porch:

lunaresize.jpg

HOW AWESOME IS THAT! I have decided to take it as an omen because my second book, Between, Georgia, is stuffed chock-full of Luna moths, and here one came and graced my wall! I wondered if it was maybe DYING, because they HATCH (or whatever one does from a cocoon) with NO DIGESTIVE SYSTEM. Seriously. They only have reproductive organs. And leafy feelers so they can find OTHER moths with OPPOSING reproductive organs. And WINGS so they can get to the bearers of said opposing reproductive organs. And then they make caterpillars with NO reproductive organs; Caterpillars are pretty much just TUBES with STOMACHS. Which I find to be very creepy, and yet the bugs themselves begin as CUTE and END as gorgeous.

Then I was working out with gameshow network on---Card Sharks -- and what's-his-bucket said, "We asked 100 dieters, would you rather give up FOOD or SEX." (DIGRESSION: UM? Does this strike anyone else as a BIZARRE question; I mean, if you picked FOOD you wouldn't get to enjoy sex anyway because you would be DEAD in a few weeks or days if WATER was included as food, and yet 48 of the dieters said FOOD. And then I thought about the RAT experiment and that rat chose DEATH BY STARVATION over giving up sex. So. If YOU were the rubber-skull-cap rat, what button would YOU push? END DIGRESSION) In the middle of my second weight set, I suddenly realized the bizarre question might actually be a BONAFIDE MESSAGE FROM THE LORD to go check on the luna moth. SURE ENOUGH, I found the pack of small boys approaching with fistfuls of pinestraw and leaves and moth-poking sticks to "build him a fort" which I think was code for "surround him with kindling and light him on fire."

Me: DO NOT MOLEST THAT MOTH.
Boy 1: Um, but I think he is dead.
Me: He is not dead.
Boy 2: But we poked him and he just sat. We poked him a LOT.
Me: Dead things do not cling to walls. Leave him alone.
Boy 2: Maybe he died and someone glued him there.
Boy 3: Yeah, with GLUE.

There is no hope for America what with ONE small neighborhood alone about to yield 10 or 12 serial killers, but I am taking the moth as a good omen anyway...

Posted by joshilyn at 9:57 AM | Comments (17)

May 21, 2005

Questions That Kept Me Awake Last Night

1) What does TWEE mean? Is it a good word or not a good word? In short, is it TWEE to use the word TWEE?

2) In the Jude Law version of Alfie, after Alfie HAND PICKS THE ROSES, who does he give them to? What happens after that? Anything? Because I couldn't watch any more of it, even though Jude Law is scrutiating fetching.

3) IS ANYONE prettier that Jude Law? Well, other than Johnny Depp, but I suspect he is supernatural. Has any NON-SUPERNATURAL human in the history of the UNIVERSE ever been prettier than Jude Law? Discuss.

4) WHEN will the reality TV trend be over? I cannot help but feel NATURAL END to this MADNESS will be putting people in an arena purportedly to have public sex, and then once they are good and distracted, SURPRISE! The producers release lions which kill and eat them. And I can't imagine I would find that more embarrassing to watch than AVERAGE JOE II, HAWAII.

Posted by joshilyn at 4:54 PM | Comments (13)

May 20, 2005

GCC: Three Questions with Marianne Mancusi (and some PS-es)

Marianne Mancusi's first novel, A Connecticut Fashionista in King Arthur’s Court (May 2005, Dorchester) is getting some great press. Publisher's Weekly calls it, "a sparkling debut," and Kristin Harmel (who does The Daily Buzz on the WB Morning Show) says, "once you pick it up, you won't be able to put A Connecticut Fashionista in King Arthur's Court down."

Here's the Skinny: Connecticut Fashionista features an outspoken fashion editor named Kat, who’s certainly not your typical damsel in distress. But when a gypsy curse sends her back in time to the days of King Arthur, she’ll need every ounce of her 21st century wits (and pop culture references) to navigate the legend. After all, surviving a magical plot, an evil prince, and a case of mistaken identity--all without changing history or scuffing your Manolos--takes some doing!

I sat down over a computer screen and a bucket of absinthe and had a little chat with Marianne:

Me: You are young, you are pretty, you have a hip job in TV, you have an EXCELLENT haircut and you know your shoes. AND YET, I smell secret geek all over you, my friend. Come on, 'fess up---what's your poison---Video games? Sci-Fi movies? I can recite the dialogue from every episode of classic Trek, AND I've been to GEN CON, so you are among friends... What geeky vice did you pick up that got you interested in writing a time travel story?

MM: Ha! Okay, okay, you got me. :-) Though it's not exactly the best image to project, most likely, when selling Chick Lit, I'm a geek to the core. I'm a huge gamer, currently addicted to a massive multiplayer online role playing game called World of Warcraft. I play almost every night. (My husband plays as well.)

Love Sci-fi and fantasy - whether movies, tv, or books. I've never been to GEN CON, but it's not for lack of wanting to. I really wish I was at E3 this week, but alas I have to work.
Anyway - I was always a huge King Arthur fan. Read all the books growing up. So it was a natural fit to do a King Arthur time travel. Also, book 3 in the series will be a futuristic! Can't wait to write that one.

JJ: If YOU could travel back in time and mack on some historically delicious chunk of man, when and who would you go and do? And what shoes would you wear?

MM: Actually, I'd love to go back in time and hook up with King Arthur. Comfort him over the whole Lancelot/Guenevere thing. I always thought he was a way better guy than Lancelot and never really understood why Guenevere chose Lance over her dashing, brave, England uniting husband. As for shoes, I'd probably go with something comfortable over classy. After all, the roads could get a bit muddy!

JJ: I was very surprised to read on your blog that you DID NOT read all of Twain's book before writing a book that riffs on it. Can you talk a little about how and why you made that choice?

MM: I didn't read Twain's book intentionally. Well, I read a couple chapters, then decided I didn't want to be accidentally influenced by another comedy time travel. I also didn't watch Martin Lawrence's Black Knight movie for the same reason. Didn't want to unintentionally steal the jokes. Besides, neither of those stories follow the original legend very closely, which is what I wanted to do. So instead, I read plenty of traditional Arthurian books and borrowed quite heavily from them.. It was actually a lot of fun, because every version of the legend is a bit different so I cherry picked my favorite parts from each one and created something all my own.

JJ: I SEE THE GREEN FAIRY! I SEE THE GREEN FAIRY!

MM: Put down the bucket and back slowly away from the absinthe...

Okay, I made that last part up.

PS I think "SITH HAPPENS" is the STUPIDEST ad campaign EVER. It's not just CUTESY...it's downright PRECIOUS. *spits*

PPS While I was on the road, my hard-fought JENNY CRAIG FOR CATS campaign FAILED as my parents and children loaded Schubert/Waffles' plate up with butter and creamed herring ANY TIME HE PEEPED at them. He was NOT indicating hunger, just announcing that he had burped, and therefore he MIGHT have a sliver of belly room and was willing to try to pack something else in there. He is ONCE AGAIN too fat to groom his back half, and has the BIG DANDERY BUTT to prove it, and my vet is going to YELL AT ME.

PPPS I had my first ever book club bookings yesterday---one over the phone with a pack of wild high school persons (TEENAGERS! WHO READ!!! I felt I should dart them and tag their ears while they were down so we could make sure they survive once they were released from bookclub back into their own habitat. Did you catch the IMPORT of what i just said??? I spoke to REAL, ACTUAL, ALIVE, READING TEENAGERS!!! Praise the Lord and pass the chips. THEY ARE NOT A MYTH! A neat bunch of smarties they were, too.

Then the second was local so I got to actualy GO---it was a bunch of women around my age who had the good sense to 1) be funny and smart and 2)hold their book club meetings at a WINE AND DESSERT BAR. I am going to go now and write more books real quick so I can go BACK.

Posted by joshilyn at 8:05 AM | Comments (8)

May 18, 2005

Viva la pR0n Spams

I just spent TWO HOURS OF MY LIFE I WILL NEVER GET BACK cleaning spams out of my pending comments on this blog. I know exactly where to go now to look at boobs, to get bigger boobs, to look at naked butts, to get a smaller butt, to maintain an erection (although if I maintain it for more than four hours I should seek immediate medical attention), to join a naked hot teen asian spanking bubble bath party, to play Texas Holdem, to play naked hot teen asian spanking Texas Holdem, to clear my nasal passages...I know it ALL, baby. TWO. HOURS. OF. MY. LIFE. And I am MAYBE halfway done. And this is just the spams that accumulated while I was on TOUR. I stopped cleansing daily because trying to cleanse from the laptop led to me banning everyone whose email had a .COM in it. HEH. So. It built up.

My least fave spammer is this SMUG POOHEAD who hides his pR0n urls in a "comment" that says, "Great blog! Thanks for keeping all the spammers off it."

Haha. That's hysterical. I was laughing so hard at that clever bit of repartee I almost hired an ex-con to beat that spammer into a fine, white powder. Most people, when they REALLY become amused, laugh so hard they spray coffee on their monitor, or they wet themselves...not me. When a spammer is THAT dern funny, I accidentally hire a violent felon. So, please, spam me some more.

DO I SOUND CRABBY???? I am a single mom for another ten days, I have deadlines coming out my EARS, I am still nominally on tour, my house is MIRED IN FILTH, and here I sit cleansing spam for two hours because I do NOT want to pay extra because smart guys like him are USING MY BANDWIDTH to sit in my pending comments. BUT since there is NO STOPPING THE SPIDERS, I ask you, Must they also be SMUG??? I SO want to be able to say to him, "YOU ARE WELCOME! And PS, your REPUGNANT CRAP never ONCE showed up on my blog, Mr. Pending Porny Dorkwad."

He is one of the "Bigger Pieces-Parts People." He is hawking "natural male anhancement." If I did not try to keep this blog rated PG-ish because my 14 year old nephew often reads it, I would be VERY tempted to make some sort of pun about how he doesn't need his own product because he couldn't POSSIBLY be a bigger dick.

Oh. Oops. Viva la I AM crabby. NEPHEW! AVERT THINE EYES!

Posted by joshilyn at 7:46 AM | Comments (16)

May 17, 2005

Viva la Primate! Viva la Jones New York!

We went out to eat, and Maisy kept insisting she saw a monkey. She was standing up in our highbacked booth, saying, MOMMY LOOKITTA MONKEY! A MONKEY! *point point*

I didn't see a monkey. She insisted, hooting and making monkey noises and pointing. I scanned the walls for a picture with a monkey in it. Nope. I checked the bar rail for some sort of figurine. Nothin'.

SEE DAT MONKAY, MOMMY??? A MONKEY! She really wanted me to find this phantom monkey. I scanned the room again and then I shook my head and looked away. The moment I gave up and quit seeking it, the monkey resolved itself in my peripheral vision. It was like that huge blocky billboard that used to be by the highway in Penscaola, Florida that LOOKED like a bunch of nonsensical blocks of color, but when you gave up trying to puzzle it out and put your eyes back on the highway, the WHITE parts would pop out you, visually shrieking the word, "JESUS!" and you would run off the road at 55 miles an hour and smash into a tree and get to meet the guy whose name had just assaulted you much, much sooner than you may have liked. So it was with Maisy's monkey. I could suddenly see him.

Of course, it wasn't actually a monkey. It was a hair-do.

Sitting with its back to us in another highbacked booth, it was a hair-do that looked EXACTLY LIKE A MONKEY. The person attached to the hair-do had spent a considerable amount of time teasing and spraying and back-combing her monkey-brown locks into a MIGHTY EDIFICE a-top her head. It had a pot-bellied monkey body for a base and a long curly tendril tail and two little braid-like twisty bits meeting over the belly as skinny monkey arms and then perched at the apex was a purely decorative bun-like round bit that made up his head. If the hair-do's conveyance had glued some googly eyes to that portion, she could have passed, from the back, for a stuffed animal.

If hair-doing was an X-Treme sport, the monkey would have paws-down won. It was rural Georgia mall hair taken several fathoms deeper than its logical conclusion (which was, if you are wondering, the week-old bee-hive, kept fresh-ish via elaborate bed-time tissue wrapping ceremonies). The monkey-hair, more than anything, assured me I was HOME. Trust me, oh my goslings, they don't got no monkey-bunned ladies keeping Breck's stock value up in VERMONT. And in Chicago, such a hair-do would act as a parasail; you would be lifted by it, carried far out over the lake, and dumped to drown.

Not that I am knocking Vermont. Vermont has my friend Mir in it (or did last weekend anyway) and it has Bob Gray and Northshire Bookstore (on a more permanent basis) and it has the OUTLET MALLS! OH MY LORD! The outlet malls where I WON shopping, snapping up a Jones New York suit with blouse and cami and also some deep cranberry sling-backs with four inch heels (Swag that would have cost, retail, well in excess of seven hundred bucks) for a MERE $150. A WINNER IS ME!!!

It would have been $200, but Mir accosted this woman ahead of us in line...the woman had tried to use a 25% off coupon, but she FAILED to actually use it because her things were from the super-double-no-more-off--supreme-desperation-move-this-stock clearance rack. As she tried to leave the store, coupon unused, Mir wrestled her to the ground and beat her in the face until she yielded it, thus saving me another 50 bucks.

You know what they ALSO have in Vermont? ASSERTIVENESS! I need to get me a little baggy of that next time I am up in New England.

If you want to read more about SHOPPING and what happened later post-shopping and post-event when Mir and her friend Eileen and the Warner Rep (Conan) and my friend Erica and I all met up to begin the EPIC END OF TOUR DRINKING...well then. Mir has written an Homeric Odyssey of the entire experience. complete with many pictures...some of which I am going to have to PAY HER TO TAKE DOWN because I look like a CRACK-MONKEY. But oh well.

And yeah I will tell you the WORM ATTACK! story she refers to at some point. Right after I tell you what happened when I went skating in fuzzy pink socks. Ice Skating, I believe it was. In the bowels of Hell. I was with my dear pointy-headed betailed friends, Belzaphestus and Meazzophaline. So, in other words, could happen any day now. No, really.

Posted by joshilyn at 7:25 AM | Comments (7)

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 11:33 PM | Comments (12)

May 12, 2005

In Which I Feel Sorry Myself

I AM SORRY FOR MYSELF.
I am pit sitting.
I am WALLOWING in it.
I am weepy and pathetic and damp and pink eyed and sorrowful in Chicago at a hotel I hate with even more vim than the Moneysuck one because...oh HOW DO YOU COME TO HATE A HOTEL WITH VIM! LET ME COUNT THE WAYS...

1) They send loud people to bang all over with hammers in the room next to yours while you are still sleeping and

2) A GIANT spider, and I mean GIANT, like, you could get enough spider material to make about four perfectly respectable garden spiders out of just this one, attacks when you are naked in the shower and

3) You beat the spider to death using the metal trash can, slamming it repeatedly against the TILE SHOWER, creating a MIGHTY RACKET and as you bang you SCREAM AND SCREAM, you scream like the DAMNED ON FIRE IN HELL while you beat the spider into chunks, and then later you realize that if, instead of a spider, it had been, say, AN AXE MURDERER, and if, instead of a trashcan ringing against the tile it had been, SAY, an axe ringing against the tile as it hacked you into chunks, and you had been screaming and screaming exactly like the damed on fire in hell...the construction workers tearing the room up next to you would have cheerfully continued banging away and NOT RESCUED YOU AT ALL...

4) NOT that you wanted 50 construction workers to come in and see you naked and beating a spider into about 9 pieces, BUT STILL, they HAD to hear you because you heard them, and if it IS an axe murderer next time, you better just say a quick hail mary and prepare to be the one beaten into 9 separate pieces BECAUSE NO ONE AT THIS HOTEL IS GOING TO COME AND SAVE YOU, nor are they going to...

5) GIVE YOU A RIDE TO THE GYM. Even if their own gym is under construction and they SAY upon a NOTE in your ROOM that all you have to do is GO TO THE LOBBY and ASK for a ride to the gym, and so you go, and it is 50 degrees and pouring rain outside, and you say you need to go to the gym and they DO NOT offer you a ride at ALL, but they look at you as you stand in your T-Shirt and shorts, and they say, "UM IT IS ONLY SIX BLOCKS YOU CAN WALK IT IN TEN MINUTES" and you say "BUT IT IS RAINING" and they say "NOT HARD" and send you off into the rain to get IMMEDIATELY LOST and people in BOOTS AND OVERCOATS huddled under UMBRELLAS look at you like you are a moron because OH MY LORD YOU ARE!!! You ARE a moron to let the doorman intimidate you out into this weather in a T-SHirt and you will wander the streets of chicago CRYING and FREEZING and WET and LOST and wishing ONSTAR made ENDEMIC BIOLOGICAL BLOOD-INFESTING NANOTECH SYSTEMS that you could have implanted into your SPINE so you could press your belly button and someone could would come save you because

6) YOU FEEL VERY SORRY FOR YOURSELF. And are cold.

I'm just saying.

ON THE OTHER HAND:

THIS HOTEL IS VERY FANCY. It has a PLASMA TV in it. A HUGE ONE! I am trying to figure out how to get that puppy into my luggage because HELLO!!! Spider. And CONSTRUCTION. And imminent unrescued death by the same construction workers who WOKE YOU UP. And NO GYM. And mean intimiating doorman who says the freezing rain is "NOT HARD." And lost and wet and feeling SICK now and NEVER HAVE I HATED A HOTEL WITH SUCH VIM.

This hotel? Forget chips. I want to win PLASMA TEEVEE.

Posted by joshilyn at 10:19 AM | Comments (12)

May 11, 2005

I Shriek At You and then Run for a Plane

ONE OF THE REPS gave me an ARC for a book I am DYING to read. It is called WIDOW OF THE SOUTH by ROBERT HICKS and it is coming out this fall and, oh my best beloveds, you heard it here first: Hothothot buzz all OVER this book. I LIKE ARCs, I LOVE getting my hands on a book before it is released. It makes me feel DIRTY. But in a good way.

SO I am all BOTHERED to read this ARC but I couldn't because it is SOUTHERN and I don't read southern when I am working and (I am pleased to report) I AM WORKING. My brain is a bag of low-fat popcorn revolving in the microwave oven of my head, poppoppop. I plan to read WIDOW at the end of this month when I take a little 2 week break to work on some SUMMARIES...SO LONG STORY UNBEARABLY LONG... I GOT a copy and I just went to LOOK for it to show my mother who is here to raise my children as I gallivant off to Chicago and Vermont, and I realized I must have promptly LOST it. DERNIT. I was on the road.

WAIT NO! It was in New Orleans!!! I think. I think I may have mailed it to myself, or handed it to the media escort to mail to me! OH MY LORD it is seriously all coming back to me as I type. That's where it is. My LUGGAGE got overweight and somewhere in New Orleans is a media rep who has a BUTTLOAD of my books actually that we kept meaning to ship and we kept being thwarted by post office hours and the not having a box where they would all fit and there are COOKIES in there too I think, COOKIES! I was trying to mail myself these LEMON COOKIES and a SHARP pink purse that Gabi gave me and a PANTSLOAD of books, and we never could get them mailed, and the media escort said, DO NOT WORRY MY LITTLE POODLE, MY DUMPLING, MY BELOVED SHY HERMIT CRAB! FOR I SHALL MAIL THEM TO YOU! MEDIA RATE! BECAUSE I AM THRIFTY, NOW LIE YOUR HEAD UPON MY RAMPANT BOOOOSOMS AND I SHALL PET YOUR HAIR AND SING TO YOU AS WE GO TO THE AIRPORT.

I love media escorts. They pick you up and tote you around and feed you at regular intervals and are usually BOOK people to boot. It's like a WELL-READ NANNY for grown-ups. I want one for my house.

FAVORITE SAM STORY OF WHILE I WAS ON THE ROAD:

Sam: I think we're going to add another baby when Maisy is five.
My Mother: Oh? Really?
Sam: Yes. That's only two years away, so we better get ready.
My Mother: Why do you think you guys will be adding another baby? Did your mom and dad say something?
Sam: I think mom wants some more people around here. You know, to help with the chores.

ADDENDUM: FOUND THE BOX! The media rep DID ship it. My husband PUT IT IN A SPECIAL PLACE because I was on the road. WIDOW OF THE SOUTH NOT IN IT. Distraught. I was SO sure that was where it was. Taking WHITE TEETH to read on the plane, anyway, but. Where is that BOOK????

Posted by joshilyn at 7:10 AM | Comments (10)

May 10, 2005

GCC: Absolutely NO Questions with Martha O'Connor

I started reading The Bitch Posse on a long flight, and was 50 pages from the end when the pilot landed us. I was SO mad. I knew right when I got off the plane I had to go do some media and then hurl my bags into a hotel room and run to a signing and then out to dinner so I would not be able to get back to the book for HOURS. Gahhhhhhhh! I said to my (somewhat literal) seatmate, "WOULD IT HAVE KILLED HIM TO CIRCLE MEMPHIS A COUPLE OF TIMES SO I COULD FINISH THIS BOOK?"

Somewhat Literal Seatmate: Well, yes. Because you see, the air traffic controllers cleared a space and they expect this plane to land right now. It WOULD have killed him. And us.

Me: ....Okay! By the way? You should read this book. *holds up The Bitch Posse*

I am SO pleased that today's GCC tour focuses on Martha O'Connor and her visceral, intense novel about three friends who share a violent history and who are living not WITH the fall-out, but IN it. I am so NOT pleased that I forgot to send Martha my traditional three questions. I am NOT OKAY in my brain pan yet. Really. I slept for eleven hours last night. BUT. YOU KNOW WHAT. I will just send them to her tomorrow and post them next week so I can talk about this book twice. BECAUSE IT DESERVES IT.

This is NOT a book for the faint of heart. It doesn't pull punches and it serves no chicken soup for any type of soul. It's a breathless, burning, shockwave of a read. IT IS ALSO R RATED, so if you are my 14 year old nephew, no clicky-clicky the linky. You got me, kemo sabe? If you are NOT my 14 year old nephew, go give it a little taste and see if it suits you...We'll do three questions with Martha later AND if you have a questiojn you want asked, shoot me an e-mail. I will e her later today and grovel because I was an incompetent and possibly blue-footed booby who didn't get them to her.

IN OTHER NEWS:

MT Blacklist just caught and stopped a spammer whose spiders were posting links to something called BUSINESS FARTS. Which...my inner 8 year old boy thinks that is HYSTERICAL and almost wishes that MT Blacklist was a LEETLE less effective.

ALSO, one of my FAVE handsellers has come up with a new marketing strategy for gods in Alabama. He just sent me a letter about it that KILLS me, so I am shamelessly quoting him here:

I also wanted to congratulate you on god's official step into the world of
BEST-SELLER! I have read few books in recent memory that deserve it more.
You have quite a devoted following here at the store, and we're daily
placing it in customers' hands with pitches such as "You're a filthy pig if
you don't read this book."

HEHEHEHE! GO DAVIS-KIDD!

Posted by joshilyn at 7:57 AM | Comments (4)

May 9, 2005

Yesterday, I slept

That was pretty much my day. I never once got out of pajamas.

I DID get out of a bed a couple of times...played mini-pool in the basement with Sam, played Teacher-Teather with the mini poolsticks with Maisy. (Teacher-Teacher is a game where I sit on the ground and Maisy draws on a blackboard. Then she uses a poolstick to point at her picture which inevitably resembles some very angry looking amoeba and she says to me, very sternly, "That's YOU, mommy. That's YOU." Then she'll draw a genetically impossible lobster with one giant googly eyeball and say, "An' that's daddy." It's a good game, especially when I am SO physically worn down that I actually RESEMBLE a deflating pile of somewhat ticked-off amoeba.)

Here is my favorite Maisy-thing from when I was away...

I went down to do a reading/signing in the town where I grew up -- Pensacola, Florida, and since my family lived there for more than 20 years and I graduated from highschool there and etc, my parents drove the kids down because they wanted to see all their old friends and whatnot. So my mom was explaining what would happen that weekend to Maisy.

Mom: And then we'll get to the hotel, and check in, and have dinner...
Maisy: *very sleepy, not paying much attention* Mmm-kays.
Mom: And then we'll see Mommy! She will be signing her book at the Barnes and Nobles.
Maisy: *perking up and pulling her T-Shirt up over head* I have Nobles!

Posted by joshilyn at 6:30 AM | Comments (9)

May 5, 2005

EMAIL BROKEN

All my emails I have written in the last 48 hours are sitting in my TO BE SENT FILE erroring their little hearts out and refusing to send. SO. If you wrote me in the last coupla days....sorry -- will try to fix but I have no SCOTT here. WAIL!

Posted by joshilyn at 5:30 PM | Comments (3)

Fat and Happy

OMG Baby has some BACK. Four pounds on this tour so far. GARGLE! When get home, swimsuit season will JUST be beginning!
Me: GAHHHHHHHHHH WHY LORD WHY?
Lord: Um, the chocolate you keep eating? Maybe the wine? It's not like this is a mystery, child, remember the seven deadlies? Gluttony?
Me: ...Can I please have a better metabolism?
Lord: How about having less dessert.
Me: DONE PRAYING FOR TODAY, THANKS.

On the bright-side, this is, as of yesterday, the giant butt of a best-selling novelist. LA! LA LA LA! There are industry standards you have to meet to be able to call yourself or your book certain things, and yesterday, gods MET THE SET that = Best selling. It is now a BEST SELLING NOVEL. Who do we like? BOOK SENSE! Who do we ALSO like? INGRAM'S! Who do we NOT LIKE???

Kevin Guilfoile. OFTEN we LIKE people who write suspenseful, entertaining books, but KEVIN lost fifteen pounds while touring, and I am ONE BY ONE finding them for him. So. Go buy his book -- he needs the money so he can purchase BUTTERED BACON and eat it and take the dern things back.

I have to go SQUEEZE the butt (which is about to, yes, become a separate entity with its own social security number) into a skirt that FIT WHEN I LEFT and run sign books. BEST SELLING books.

Love,
Best selling author of the best selling book gods in Alabama which is best selling which you should go buy so I can get some GYM EQUIPMENT

Posted by joshilyn at 10:18 AM | Comments (14)

May 4, 2005

How to Get Chips

1) REALLY want chips. YEARN for chips. Desire chips not just for CHIPS sake, but because you are very hungry, and it is late at night, and you are BACK in Memphis at the MONEYSUCK hotel and you REFUSE to order room service. You would sooner be eaten by zombie monkeys. Slowly. SO. YOU NEED CHIPS.

2) Follow signs to ICE AND VENDING. Find Ice and a coke machine and another sign that says, "CHIPS are located on the third floor in the guest laundry."

3) Go to third floor.

3) Find no chips.

4) Find no guest laundry, even. Instead, find MORE ICE and a coke machine and a sign that says "CHIPS are located on the third floor in the guest laundry."

5) Pop your head of of ICE AND VENDING and look at all the room numbers that say 324, 325, 326, etc but no signs for guest laundry.

6) Wander the third floor like an aimless ghost, wailing about chips.

7) Did I mention you are in your pajamas? Well. You are. You have decided that since you have put on sandals and a bra and since your pajamas are actually a VERY soft pair of Moroccan pants your friend Amy gave you and a 9 year old pilled knit maternity top (SSSSSSSEXY!) it's okay. See, you got locked out of your room once before in modest but VERY OBVIOUSLY PAJAMA pajamas, so on THIS leg you took non-pajama looking sleepies. Assessing your sleepwear in the mirror, PRE-chip-hunt, you concluded rightly that most people would think "escaped mental patient" before they would think, "ah! pajamas!" and since it is VERY late and you are VERY hungry and you aren't GOING ANYWHERE really except right down the hall from your room to vending, you thought to yourself, "HEY! Why CHANGE?" Except now the OBVIOUS answer is, "Because you are going to have to go to the lobby."

6) Go to the lobby. In your pajamas. Have nice human explain that there are TWO third floors. A north tower one and a south tower one. You have been wandering the halls of the NORTH tower one....guess where the chips are.

7) Go to SOUTH tower third floor. Follow signs to guest floor laundry where person-who-is-unhappier-than-you is doing his laundry. God bless him. He is doing laundry in the dark of night in a hotel far from home. He is probably unhappier than EYEORE.

8) SEE! CHIP! MACHINE! Do a small internal prance (VERY internal because it is untoward to prance gleefully by someone who is RADIATING I-am-unhappier-than-eyeore vibes).

9) Put dollar in slot. Watch machine placidly put dollar RIGHT back out.

10) Repeat step nine about eleven times.

11) Notice that the repetition has attracted Eyeore, who watches with sad yet unsurprised eyes.

12) Bang head on chip machine, and as you do, notice a FLASHING RED SIGN just above the placid dollar-spitting slot that says CHANGE ONLY.

13) GO BACK to lobby in pajamas and get CHANGE for your dollar.

14) BACK to guest laundry. Eyeore watches your approach with something akin to hope. You suspect Eyeore is rooting for the chip machine.

15) Start to not like Eyeore. Lift your chin and decide NOT to be defeated. Walk to machine, undefeated, put in change, undefeated, and undefeatedly press button for chips.

16) Be defeated.

17) GO BACK TO THE LOBBY and get ONE of your quarters swapped out for two dimes and a nickel.

18) BACK TO LAUNDRY. Eyeore says, "I do not think that will help. I tried it earlier with all dimes and I could not get it to work either..."

19) STRONGLY consider murder.

20) Decide against it and put EXACT change in, hold breath, say teeny prayer and watch in mounting joy and disbelief as the CHIPS SLIDE TOWARD YOU and by some MIRACLE do NOT catch on the edge of the wheelie thing and hang there paid for but ungettable thus necessitating Ben Stiller type antics where you try to WORM up into the machine and get them and then failing that you ROCK it back and forth in a moronic frothing rage, a course of action that can only lead to you dead under a chip machine with Eyeore standing over your corpse saying something PITHY, but instead chips FALL into the slot and are YOURSYOURSYOURS.

21) CONTROL impulse to victory dance because you are NOT dancing for Eyeore in your pajamas. Chips or no Chips.

22) Clutching chips, run to elevator and head up to the tenth floor, and then stand outside your room for a long time putting key card in and getting a red light before you realize....your room is actually on the SOUTH tower's tenth floor, and you are currently assaulting a door in the NORTH tower.

23) Creep away before whoever is crouched inside the room terrorized by your predations can call the cops, and go BACK down to lobby (The pajamas at this time are beginning to think of themselves as LOUNGE WEAR) and then back up the OTHER tower where a merciful God lets you back into your room to fall asleep in front of Law of Order before you even get the chip bag open, but it doesn't MATTER because you WON, you WON CHIPS, you defeated Eyeore and, more importantly, you defeated ROOM SERVICE, and you sleep the beautiful sleep of the just.

Posted by joshilyn at 6:27 AM | Comments (17)

May 2, 2005

What Really Happened

Mr. Husband was SO circumspect in the comments, saying the ISSUE with COMMENTS has now been resolved. Want to know what REALLY happened?

SOME DUNDERHEADED TECHNO-NOOB (we won't say who...let's just say her name would rhyme with Moshilyn if the H in Moshilyn was silent) was going through the constant stream of PORN and PRESCRIPTION DRUG and GAMBLING SITE comments that the spam spiders TRY to leave that MT Blacklist had stops and puts in a list for me to BAN, and I was wading through that list, banning IPs and URLs with reckless and cheerful abandon:

getabiggerone.com??? BAN!
pxdrugsdrugs.net??? BAN!!!!
glisteningslutz.tv?? BAN!!!!
Texasholdem.com?? BANNNN!!!!
.com?? BAN!!!!!!

Um wait a sec---did you catch that? Yeah. This anonymous moron BANNED anyone with a .com in their e-mail addy or website from commenting. But hey, the .net and the .tv folk were still welcome...HEH. Scott basically unbanned the .commers, and all is well in comment land.

I have to run leap on a plane and head to Memphis. More later!

Posted by joshilyn at 8:34 AM | Comments (9)

May 1, 2005

For the Record

1) The blog comments and the blog itself are both SOMEWHAT BROKEN. Mr. Husband is ON THE CASE. We hope to return you to your regularly scheduled blogging by MONDAY. THANKS FOR THE E-MAILS!

2) It is SICK AND WRONG to put sugar in grits. Grits are nature's PERFECT vehicle for FAT. (Nature's perfect verhicle for SUGAR is obvious CHOCOLATE.) But Sugared Grits? NO. You may (and indeed, SHOULD) put untold amounts of butter and/or cheese and/or any sort of flesh-of-pig in there, and salt helps the fat STICK better so put a lot of THAT in, and I won't fuss if you wish to mash your eggs up in there with them. But SUGAR??? That is MENTALLY ILL. GET. HELP.

3) I leave for round three of TRAVEL SANS MERCY on Monday. I'll be blogging next from the air on the way to Memphis.

4) Thacker Mountain Radio ROCKED and there will be a STREAMING AUDIO way to hear it. I think. I hope! IF THERE IS, you will get a link here. SO!

Posted by joshilyn at 6:51 AM | Comments (9)