We have a busy day ahead of us, so I’m going to put this post up early today. Please accept my apologies if you meant to ask a question but hadn’t gotten to it yet. There’s always next week! But if I don’t post now, I won’t get to it until late tonight. And why am I explaining this? I’m such a dork. Ahem. Anyway.
Genuine asks, in the book of my life, which chapters are the best reads?
You’ve probably already read about that time when I was two and I fell down a mining shaft… riveting stuff…. (Fiction.)
This may be perceived as a cop-out answer, but I hope that the best is yet to come. I strongly suspect that my late thirties and my forties are going to be the most interesting, yet. But, okay… if I have to stick to the chapters already written, I’d guess my freshman year of college makes the best read thus far. Keep in mind that I’m a sucker for a coming-of-age drama, but there you have it. I turned 17 the week before I started college. I was an old soul but a young kid, and it was my first big grappling with reconciling the two. I screwed it up rather badly, but it makes for an interesting story, I suppose. (Fact.)
Angela asks, what did I want to be, as a child and then as a teen, when I grew up?
I’ve always had a fascination with large axes. People made fun of my desire to be the first famous female lumberjack, but I didn’t care! (Fiction; I’m lucky I can use scissors without hurting myself.)
Oh how I hate to be a cliche, but sadly, that doesn’t stop me. As a child, I debated to myself–often–whether I would settle for a life as a famous actress, or whether I’d take the high road and be a famous novelist. No joke: in fifth grade I wrote a short story for Mrs. Simons (in the first person, natch) about a little girl with an unhappy home situation who considers killing herself, but whose problems are basically all solved because she manages to get to an open casting call for “Annie” and lands the lead. On Broadway. Mrs. Simons disregarded the cry for help that this piece so obviously was, and gave me an A+++++. (Yeah, Mrs. Simons was a little loopy that way. I got lots of pluses in her class despite being a mental health train wreck.)
As a teenager, I decided that nothing would stand between me and the Broadway dream. My older brother wanted to study music, in college, and my parents threatened not to pay his tuition if he didn’t major in something more practical. He got his degree in civil engineering and is now a jazz musician. Having watched my brother’s situation before mine, when I announced that I wished to major in drama I was not surprised when my parents threatened not to pay my tuition. I countered with the suggestion that if I could not pursue my major of choice, I simply wouldn’t attend college. Checkmate. I majored in theatre, and went on to become a software engineer. (Fact, and proof that truth is stranger than fiction.)
Regular Cinderella asks, when the summer ends and I turn back into a pumpkin, what do I plan to do for work?
I was thinking of getting a job at Hooters. I hear the tips are awesome. Heard of any specials on push-up bras over at Fishing For Deals lately? (Fiction!)
Well, it’s been made abundantly clear to me that I will not work as an engineer again. And freelance writing feeds my soul but not my bank account. I am trying to find an entry-level job that could potentially lead to more writing, but so far I haven’t found much. The other possibility is that if I work at the daycare center we’ve used for years–although the pay isn’t superb–I get half off tuition, effectively rendering that a very cost-conscious choice until Monkey starts public school. I’ve discussed working there with the director several times, but so far they’ve had more employees than openings. And, um, barring those options? I may just go work at Target for a while. For the discount. (I need to concentrate on the discount, and not on the fact that I hold a Masters degree from Stanford and I would be working at Target with all the local teenagers.) (Fact, *sigh*)
She also asks how I’m feeling, because she is a sweetie!
I’m feeling pretty darn good, thanks! I’m giving a big shout-out to the Vivelle Dot, as I think for the first time in a month, my hormones are actually regulated again. The anti-depressants aren’t hurting matters, either. Heh. The migraine situation seems to be under control, finally; which is good because I was about one headache away from the padded room. (Fact.)
Aurora asks, did my children understand what surgery I was having and why, and why did I have to have a hysterectomy, anyway?
It was fairly straightforward to explain to the children that they had poisoned my insides when they’d lived there, and that I now had to submit to a painful and potentially deadly procedure thanks to them. (Fiction, don’t get all ruffled. No therapy fund in the world could cover that.)
I discussed the history behind the surgery in this post, if you’d like to catch up. My son is a very happy-go-lucky kind of guy, and young, besides, and so was happy with the explanation that I had an owie the docs were going to fix. Okay, Mama, tralalala, was pretty much his reaction. My daughter–older, and more sensitive, to boot–was a harder sell. She actually remembers several previous, smaller surgeries I’ve had to deal with the endometriosis. So in her case it was a matter of saying, “Remember how Mama gets lots of belly aches and they’ve done some little surgeries before to try and fix it? Well now they’re going to do just one more thing, and it will fix me up for good and after I get better I won’t have those belly aches ever again.” She worried about it a lot, because she’s like that. But they were away visiting my ex-laws for the first week, so by the time they came home I was up and around and they could see that I was moving a little slow but perfectly fine, otherwise. Someday when it’s time to have the birds and bees talk with Chickadee, I will explain what they actually did.(Fact.)
She also asks what state I live in.
I am a proud resident of the Live, Freeze, or Die State. Here in New Hampshire we know how to have a good time… in the snow. (Fact!)
Jennifer wants to know if she should get her own blog.
Well, Jennifer, that depends. Do you like to write? Can you happily prattle on about all manner of minutiae in a way that compels people to read your blather despite its inherent lack of import? Would you like to get sucked in to a huge time-waster? Do you want to be one of the cool kids? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you need a blog! But, uh, don’t forget me when you’re famous.
Chewie is so brain-drained from four children, she asks a series of questions about how I manage my orgasmic Target jaunts, and how do the kids handle them?
I just lock the kids in the bathroom with some snacks whenever I need a Target fix. Cuz shopping with kids is impossible, as you know. (Fiction. I swear that I only considered doing that once.)
As it happens, yesterday I was kid-free for my trip, as the ex takes the kids one afternoon a week. Of course I try to limit my purchasing of stuff for the kids to the trips when they’re not with me. However, I have been known to take them to Target with me, and they know the drill. We get one of those bench carts so they can both ride, and they either ride or walk (but they must stay right beside me or get strapped back into the cart). They know I only buy items with red tags, and further know that if they behave they’re likely to get a small bit of bribery (usually a special snack, because my kids are all about food). And as I rarely get out of Target without a cart full of stuff, I have sometimes bought future gifts for them while they were with me… I just distract them with something and shove the items in question under other stuff in my cart. And I’d love to tell you that they’re perfect angels there, but sometimes they act up. And then we leave. And there is lots of crying. Mostly by me. (Fact. Please pass the Kleenex.)
Janet wants to know what, short of a brain transplant, would make her blog funnier.
Ummmm… a sex change operation? I would come laugh at that. (Fiction; I would never laugh at you. Maybe with you. And please no hate-mail about transgender stuff because I’m joking for crying out loud.)
I don’t know, Janet. My guess is that you just haven’t had enough trauma in your life! I don’t exactly set out to be funny, most of the time. It’s more like I’ve learned that humor is a great coping mechanism. I’m a huge proponent of the “Well, ya gotta laugh or scream, and laughing is more fun” philosophy. My MO is basically to turn all of the annoying aspects of my life into blog fodder, thereby robbing them of their ability to drive me nutty. While I appreciate that others’ enjoy my writing, the truth is that I do this as much for my own sanity as anything else. Humor heals. (Fact. I feel a little bit like L. Ron Hubbard right now.)
That concludes this week’s installment of Friday Facts and Fiction. I hope that you found enlightenment; I didn’t, but I lose things all the time and find them later, so there’s still hope.