Monday, February 28, 2011

For Your Consideration: Part Two

Okay campers,  I dug through the internet and found 
some luscious gowns to make fun of analyze with a fashion sensitive eye

 Sharon Stone has finally turned the corner and has become the creepy lady who has a mysterious attic and overgrown yard full of creatures who come out in the moonlight and slink around the neighborhood eating the dog food you put out for your normal pet.  When her nocturnal pets die she skins them, tans their hides and wears them on her shoulder to important events.

Melissa Leo thought that no one would take her seriously wearing the doily her grandma crocheted, so she dropped an F-bomb giving her acceptance speech.  Grandma was embarrassed.

Seriously Hugh, give the little woman the night off and let her leave her feather dusters at home.

Russell Brand looks like Rasputin in anything he wears.   
I bet Katy Perry sleeps with pepper spray under her pillow.

A perfect demonstration of a seamstress suffering from 
 severe vertigo and determination to use up 45 yards of ugly nylon net

When a black swan fights with a black swan - nobody wins

I think it is really heartless when everyone makes you carry all the handbags 
just so they can give Mark Wahlberg unencumbered hugs

photos found here

For Your Consideration

Since I am as well qualified as the next unqualified Oscar observer, here are the finely honed fruits of my Academy Award surveillance.

  • There was a serious dearth of  hideous Oscar gowns this year.  C'mon Hollywood, why do you think we watch this boring show.

  • While you're on the red carpet I want to see what you are wearing, but I don't really want to hear what you're saying

  • Tim Burton, I don't know how much you paid for this hairstyle, but my pillowcase will do it for free

  • Tim's Gunn is definitely not loaded

  • 2 minutes of drama, 158 minutes to go to the bathroom, facebook, trim your toenails and eat snacks.  If you want tension, watch an Elementary School spelling bee

  • The Douglas' should have skipped the eyelifts and opted for an earlobe reduction  

  • Ladies, if you're going to wear satin, go for the industrial antiperspirant

  • Why do people purse their lips when all they are kissing is the air?  Why not just do the cheek bump and save the mouth wrinkles.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Shopping 101

My granddaughter is teaching me how to shop!

First you find the perfect shirt in appropriate size

 And then you move on and accessorize.

Remember Grandma, an outfit is not complete

Until you're put together

from head to feet.

 Oh Grandma, please stop copying me

And btw you don't wear a three

Friday, February 18, 2011


I am still fuming over this stupid-IBM-no personality-rectangular-poor excuse for a real person


soundly trouncing my boyish hero

 Ken Jennings

in a special three day Jeopardy farce event.

As the clues were revealed on the fabulous blue screen, my heart beat like a jackrabbit chased by a coyote watching  Ken's formidable brain make his eyes light up with that 

"I know this" 

gleam.  But obviously Watson's steely computer fingers were programmed to have unfair clicker advantage because  time after time Alex would say, "Watson?" And the souless microchip would chant in his braggy automated voice

"What is Cincinnati?"

My only solace?
Ken beat the evil Brad

Did you know Ken received the Congressional Medal of Freedom for Being Smart?  Well neither did I but he should have.

Did you know that Ken's oldest daughter is named Trivianna?  Neither did I but isn't it a great idea?

Age progression of Ken winning Senior Tournament of Champions

U ken!!!



Thursday, February 17, 2011

Just Add Water: Part Two

This is the second part of a chapter from a YA book I wrote called When Willa Fell.  Don't read it until you have read part one

The Swimming Party: Part Two

I blinked water out of my eyes.  The kids were all coming toward the deep end!  I dog paddled frantically, and stuck my head through my top, trying to stay above water while I pulled it back on.  Both pieces felt gigantic.  I got my arms and head back through, but the suit had stretched so much when it got wet, that the armholes and neckline sagged almost to my waist.  I was barely holding onto the bottom half, but knew I could not keep everything together and stay afloat at the same time.
Joey, the cutest boy in my class was on the diving board, yelling down at me as I struggled in the water.  I hoped I was splashing enough so he wouldn’t be able to tell what was happening.
“Hey Penny, get out of the way.”   Good grief, I was glad he was blind without his glasses.  What should I do?  I was either going to drown holding on to my suit or have to swim away without it.  How in the heck could I make it to the side and not be completely naked when I got there?  Willa, finally realizing something was up, jumped in and swam over to me.
“My suit blew up in the water,” I was dog paddling like mad to stay up and camouflage my barenakedness with splashing.  “It’s huge and falls off if I even move.”
“Wow.  You’re kidding.”  Willa sounded impressed.
“No, I’m not kidding,” I said through clenched teeth.  “You gotta help me get to the side.”  Willa grabbed a handful of soggy material at my waist and I held up another wad while we paddled awkwardly with our free arms across to the far edge of the pool.  By now, everyone was lined up at the diving board waiting a turn to show off.  I held on to the side and Willa stayed with me as we inched our way slowly to the shallow end, trying to look casual.  When I finally got to the corner I was able to lean my back against it and adjust the suit, pulling it up to cover me.  I pinned it tightly in place with my arms clenched to my sides.  I was pooped.
“Do you want to just get out?  I’ll leave with you if you want me too.”  Willa volunteered.
“I can’t.  If I even move one inch it will all fall off me.  It weighs about 50 tons.  I would never make it to the dressing room. I’m just going to have to stay here until everyone else gets out.”
It was the longest hour of my life.  After a few minutes, Willa abandoned me and it looked like she was having so much fun.  Once in a while someone would swim over and ask why I wasn’t playing games or diving.  I would say casually, “I’m just resting” or “Maybe later.”  When a ball was thrown my direction, I couldn’t even reach out to catch it and throw it back.  I had to pretend like I didn’t see it, and act surprised when it bounced off my head.
When Jill’s mom finally announced that it was time to get out and go have hamburgers, I was so relieved tears came to my eyes.  I was worn out from struggling to keep my suit up with my tightly clenched arms and from trying to look natural.  Everyone finally cleared out and headed to the dressing room—including Willa.  What in the heck was I supposed to do now?  Was I going to be stuck in here forever while my best friend went off to the party?  I was pretty mad when Willa finally showed up with my towel.  Jill’s mom said “Hurry girls up girls, or we’ll all be waiting on you.”  She sounded annoyed.  Willa came to the side of the pool and, held my towel wide as she said back over her shoulder, “Penny gets really cold.”
I climbed up the steps, dragging my suit.  I was freezing because I hadn’t been able to move around.  I gratefully wrapped the towel tightly around me, holding everything in and up. 
When I got to the dressing room I grabbed my pile of dry clothes and went into a toilet stall, locking it.  I put my dry clothes on the closed toilet lid.  When I unwrapped the towel, the hideous pink mess dropped, thudding to the floor like a dead seal.  I must have been wearing five gallons of pool water.  I dressed in a hurry and wrapped the suit in my towel, then carried my heavy load out to the waiting car. 
When I got home from the party I stomped into the kitchen where Mom was peeling potatoes.  She said, without turning around from the sink, “Oh, hi honey.   How was the swimming party?”
When I didn’t answer she looked over her shoulder.  I let my towel unroll and her horrible creation fell to the linoleum with a splat.
She bent and picked up both pieces.  “What in the world?”  Her voice trailed off as she felt the weighty blob that had once been my beautiful swimming suit.
“Oh, Penny.  Oh no…  I can’t believe… I should have tested this fabric in the water before… Oh my, this is certainly absorbent isn’t it?”
I began to wail and she took me into her arms.  “Oh Honey, I am so sorry.  You know, don’t you, that I certainly didn’t mean for this to happen.  Did anyone notice?  Tell me all about it.”
“I did a flip off the board and it exploded.  It got gigantic Mom!  I couldn’t even keep it on.  Everyone in the whole world almost saw me bare-naked.  I had to stay in the corner of the pool the whole time—I couldn’t move.  After, we went to Jill’s house to have hamburgers, and everybody kept asking me what was wrong with me—why I didn’t swim.  I had to pretend I had a stomachache and so I couldn’t even eat Jill’s birthday cake.  It is the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to me. It is the worst day of my whole life.”
Mom led me to the couch and we sat down, I leaned into her, sobbing as she held me.  “I guess I’ll give up on sewing swimsuits,” she said.  She held me, rocking a little back and forth.
“Unless you make one for someone you really hate.”
“Oh Penny, you’re terrible.”
 “You can give this one to Willa’s Aunt Alberta.  It’s her size now.”
She laughed and I wiped my eyes on her apron.
“You know Penny, someday this will be a very funny memory.  You really will look back on it and laugh.”
“Maybe in about a million years.”  I sniffed.  “Mom, you’ve got to promise to never tell anyone.”
“Of course I won’t, don’t worry about that.  This is just between us girls.  C’mon, let me get you something to eat. I bet you are completely starved.  “How about some peanut butter honey on toast?”
I was munching away when Verna walked through the room.  Instead of avoiding my eyes like usual, she looked straight at me and I could tell she had been snooping and knew everything.  I could also tell she was enjoying my humiliation.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Just Add Water

A couple years ago, I wrote a YA book called  When Willa Fell.

Penny Spencer doesn’t realize how good she has it. The year is 1972 and she is growing up in a snug world on the family ranch in northern Arizona. Her cousin Willa lives just up the road, a built in best friend, but when Penny’s parents decide to take in a foster child from the Navajo reservation, everything changes.

Verna Yazzie is from Lukachukai and she might as well be from Mars. Penny is forced to give up her room and share her family with someone who seems to have nothing to give in return. Verna is never going to fit in.

So far, I have had no luck getting it published, but I thought you might enjoy reading a chapter called...

Happy birthday to Jill

“Verna’s not even invited Mom. We can’t just show up with an extra person.”

“I’ll call Jill’s Mom, I’m sure Sheila won’t mind.”

I was horrified. “Mo-o-o-m.” My voice came out in a mouse squeak. “You can’t you just can’t.”

Willa and I had been counting down the days until Jill’s birthday party. Jill had been queen of our grade since kindergarten, and Willa and I were scared of her. Jill lived in town, shaved her legs, and all her clothes matched. She didn’t even call them clothes. She called them “outfits”. Jill did her shopping in Phoenix and she scorned the Sears catalog that Willa and I loved. She flashed with hardware—hoops in her pierced ears and braces on her teeth. She got her hair done at the New U before picture day every year and her nails were painted not chewed. Jill was the most popular girl in our class and it was the first time Willa and I had been invited to one of her parties. Now Mom was trying to ruin it by making me bring Verna.

“I don’t think Navajos believe in parties Mom.”

“Where in the world did you get that idea?” Mom shook out a towel with a sharp snap.

I tried another tack. “She doesn’t have a swimsuit.”

“Well, since you have a new one, she can borrow your old one.”

“Trust me, she won’t want to do that. It’s unhumane.”

“What in the world is that?”

“You know, germy. She won’t want my private part cooties.” Mom snapped another towel. They were always stiff from being dried outside on the clothesline. “I think you mean “unhygienic”, and I’m sure I could get rid of your cooties in my next batch of laundry.” A cupboard door slammed.

Mom gave me a glare and called out, “Verna, is that you?”

Dang that girl was sneaky. My family clomped around so you could tell where they were. Verna just seemed to appear.

“I don’t want to go to that party.” Verna said.

My face was hot with embarrassment and I mumbled “A…well. I could…”

Verna gave me a disdainful look and turned her back on me. As she left the room she said. “I can’t swim.”

I was flooded with relief (Thank you God!) that my first boy/girl party was not going to be ruined by a weird foster sister. I had enough to worry about.

Willa and I loved swimming, especially since we were finally old enough to go without a parent. We went every week and once in a great while we could talk Jimmy Scott into going with us. If I begged enough, he would pick me up right out of the water, lift me overhead and throw me. Then he would do the same for Willa. It was a blast, being launched through the air and landing with a huge splash. He was willing to do this when older girls were around, because lifting us showed off his arm muscles. He also did crazy dives and tricks off the diving board.

Jill’s parents had rented the community pool just for the party. We were going to swim for an hour and then go to her house for hamburgers, cake and ice cream. I held up the towel for Willa while she changed in the stall that had no door and then she did the same for me. I happily pulled on my new swimsuit, which was bright pink with wavy white lines. I had grown a couple inches and I had been tugging my ratty old suit out of my bum for 6 months. I found a cute two piece in the catalog and Mom said “Why I bet I can make that Penny!” That’s what she said about everything that cost too much. Except for my jeans, Mom had sewed all my clothes since I was born. I’d had my doubts about the swimsuit project, but it had really turned out cute.

When I came out of the stall Willa said, “Gosh Penny, that is sooo darling!”

“Thanks, I like it too.” I admired myself in the cloudy mirror.

We left our towels and our change of clothes in a stack on the bench, carefully hiding our underwear, and hurried out of the dressing room. The smell of chlorine and echoing voices hit us as we turned the corner. There were scads of boys and girls already in the water. They were all in the shallow end batting beach balls around.

We both stood watching for a second, huddling together with our arms wrapped around our stomachs, hands holding our elbows. A boy-girl party, this was really big. I was so glad I had a best friend. It would have been way too scary alone.

Willa elbowed me, “Do you want to do the diving board first?”

“Yeah, let’s do it.” I wondered as I walked on the rough cement deck if any boys were looking at me in my new suit. Did I really look good in it?

Willa climbed up on the diving board first and yelled, “Watch this!” over her shoulder at me. She ran to the end and bounced hard again and again. The bouncing board echoed so loudly that everyone in the shallow end turned to watch her. She went high into the air, spreading her arms and legs out wide. It looked like she was going to do a gigantic belly flop. At the last possible moment she tucked and did a cannonball. It sent a big splash into the air. Everyone cheered.

When she came to the top I yelled, “Oh yeah, watch this!” I ran to the end of the board, took one high bounce and then did a perfect fish flip. This was my specialty, and had taken a lot of practice. I kept my body stretched out, arms above my head and didn’t tuck at all, but flipped completely around once and went in feet first.

I hit the water hard and right away knew I was in big trouble. As I headed for the bottom, the top of my swimsuit stripped completely off over my head and arms. I reached out to grab it as it began to sink in front of my face. As I kicked toward the surface, the bottom half of the suit slipped all the way down my legs. I was just able to snag it with my big toe before it sank to the bottom of the pool. I tried to get my feet back into the leg holes as I came up for air. When I broke through, I was holding onto the waistband of the bottom half with one hand and the top in front of me with the other hand. I wanted to plunge right back to the bottom of the pool to put it all back on, but I had to get a breath.

I blinked water out of my eyes.  The kids were all coming toward the deep end! be continued

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine SOS

I'll make this quick, since you are probably on your way to Walgreens to peruse the picked over section of Valentine Cards.  I don't want you to end up with a card for the love of your life that looks like this

To a Wonderful Son husband

so go buy a blank card and I will help by providing you the borrowed heartfelt sentiment.


To my faithful friend
I'll love you til' the end
In spite of your breath
Which causes brain death


I gave you birth
Brought your soul to earth
Changed your Pamper
Washed your hamper
So here's a broom
Go clean your room
And you just might find
The chocolate I left behind


 Your tattoo is like
a haiku on your ankle
One with spiky hair
when you forget to shave or
accidentally miss a spot


Only you
Can make me forget
Justin Beiber
(Except the hair, I really wish you had his hair)


Baby I need an inhaler 
You've run me over with a tractor-trailer
If my fever gets any higher
I can throw away my blow dryer 


Remember that time
when you said my eyes were
bluer than
your favorite fishing lake?

Neither do I
But if you'll say it
I'll scratch your back


What do you want to do tonight?
Really?  Me too