Random musings on a writer's life & times, with occasional input from acquaintances


Tuesday, November 16, 2004

I read in this morning’s newspaper that semi-skinny movie actress Uma Thurman, of “Pulp Fiction” fame, “keeps her food intake down by eating in the nude.”

My wife, Cookie Jean, leads two Weight Watchers groups, so I pointed out to her this bit of weight-control wisdom.

“How would that work?” she asked, scrunching up her nose.

“Well,” I replied, “I suppose if you could see all your jiggles and bulges while you were eating, that would dampen your appetite. Or spilling food on your naked self is so uncomfortable -- imagine a nice, hot clam chowder dripped into your, uh, lap! -- you wouldn’t want to eat much.”

Then I had a brainstorm.

“What you should do, Cookie Jean,” I told her, “is be a role model for the Weight Watcher folks. Stroll into today’s meeting stark naked and eating a tofu hot dog!”

She didn’t seem to think that was such a good idea.


Speaking of actresses, Sandra Bullock was in the gossip column this morning, complaining about how much work it takes to appear glamorous. I used to have a crush on Sandy, but the other day I saw a screed on the internet that referred to her as “Sandra Buttock.” That spoiled her for me.

Now she’s in the same league with Catherine Zit-Jones. And Ellen DeGenerate.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

Still lazy. Still the Sunday Seven.

1) What are you wearing?

Gray t-shirt with a red, white & blue logo that identifies me as a 2004 participant in National Novel Writing Month (“So Many Words, So Little Time,” says the lettering in the middle of the logo; I’ve generated 13,957 words of a 50,000-word novel I have pledged to complete by the end of November; that’s why I’m blogging -- it’s a way to procrastinate). Orange sort-of sailor hat with Bob Dylan’s name sewed on the front (also part of my NaNoWriMo costume, which I’m supposed to wear to get in the mood for cranking out verbiage; it’s a souvenir of a Dylan/Paul Simon concert I took my three sons to a couple of years ago -- they called it “the geezer rock show”); blue jeans, white Nike sox; my wife’s sweat boots, because I can’t find mine (she wears hers without sox, so they’re all wadded up and weird inside -- ugh).

2) What are you reading?

“Corina’s Way,” a semi-comical novel by Rod Davis about voodoo and santeria in New Orleans.

3) What’s for dinner?

Take-out something. My wife/chef, Cookie Jean, is off visiting relatives in Sacramento, so son Andy and I are fending for ourselves. We ate all the leftovers Friday. Yesterday was lunchmeat and take-out burrito. What’s left? Pizza? Hmmm.

4) What’s the best thing that happened this week?

I actually made progress on this crazy novel-writing project. I am still about 8,000 words behind schedule and struggling at the moment with a bit of a plot impasse, but . . .

5) What’s bugging you?

My blowing-off-steam alternative to working on the NaNoWriMo tale, a gonzo cleaning project, stalled when La Espousa left town. We had our house majorly remodeled the winter and spring after we moved in, leaving a closet and a larger storage room in the basement buried in dust and debris. The remodeling ended a year ago last June, so I decided a few days ago it was time to clean up. (Tidiness is Peoria Dave’s middle name. Actually, it’s -- never mind. I never tell people my lame middle name.) I hauled tons of dishes, pans, jars, ice chests, insulated coffee cups, baking tools, television wires, broken light fixtures and whatnot out of the closet, dusted and washed every item, then dusted, vacuumed and washed the shelves, walls and floor. All of this in 15-minute bursts of activity over several days, so I wouldn’t grow too frustrated with the unendingness of the labor or hurt my back. Cookie Jean then decreed I couldn’t put the crap back until she sorted it to consign bits and pieces to the trash can or the garage sale/charity pile. And then she flew to Sacramento with sister Patsy, leaving me with a basement floor cluttered with clean but space-consuming junk. Cookie Jean returns Monday. Then maybe we can tie off the closet cleaning and I can move on to the storage room. I think a family of homeless people may be living in there, beneath an old computer box.

6) Where in the world is Carmen San Diego?

Sacramento! (En route to Yuba City.)

7) What’s it all about, Dave?

Consider the words of the late American poet John Berryman:

"When one thinks reluctantly over the lives of the writers with whom one is familiar, they seem a chain of disasters and maladies."

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