Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mean Girls

How could anyone be mean to this clueless girl?
In high school I sometimes got attention from girls because they were interested in my three older brothers and thought they’d go through me to get to them. Only because they hadn’t witnessed my first day in ninth grade when Tim confronted me with, “You don’t know me, you don’t talk to me, I don’t know you.”

One cool upper classmate—let’s call her The Bit… I mean Lulu—invited me to go out with her and her posse. Flattered, I accepted the invitation, thinking, See, Tim, I don't need you. I can hang with a cool, older crowd. 

We stopped at a restaurant and she and the posse went to the bathroom. When they came back Lulu asked me if I liked to sing, and I confessed I did. She raved about the acoustics in the bathroom and urged me to go in there and let fly. “You have to sing really loud to get the effect, but it’s amazing!” Lulu’s Gang of Bit… I mean, her friends joined in, begging me to try it. I kept saying no, but did head to the bathroom for its intended use. As my mother always said, “See a bathroom, use it.”

While I stood in front of the mirror brushing my hair the gang burst into the small bathroom. “You didn’t sing!” Lulu complained. “We were listening outside the door!” Their evil laughs left no doubt as to their goal. Forty years later people would be pointing to my yearbook picture and saying, “Remember when Lulu and her crowd caught Valerie singing into her hairbrush in the Big Boy’s bathroom? What a loser!”

Thank God I hadn’t started singing yet.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Lousy Terrorist Cell Phones!

One of the "good" spots for cell coverage--for those without a terrorist cell phone.
My son-in-law always tells me I have a terrorist cell phone: one of those untraceable, pay-by-the-minute, no-contract phones used for nefarious plots and then tossed.

If so, terrorists need better phones.

I just spent a week at a writing workshop up in God’s country, just off the breathtaking Blue Ridge Highway. Remote, secluded, difficult to get to even with directions. (Or maybe that’s just me.) We spent the week hatching plots and intrigues, scheming and devising—kind of like a terrorist group, except with nightly patio dancing and wine. Or who knows? Maybe terrorists like boogying and boxed wine.

The entire time I was up there my cell phone never worked. While others found sure-thing spots—in the parking lot under an umbrella, near the gazebo under an umbrella, leaning off the second-floor balcony under an umbrella (it rained a lot)—my cell showed only an old-school-style phone receiver with a red X through it. In fact, I was forty miles closer to home when I finally got a clear signal and was able to contact my husband and warn him it was time to clear out the hookers and drugs ‘cause I was coming home.

So I think:
1. Either terrorists need better phones, or
2. Anti-terrorists designed my phone to tick off terrorists.

Now that I’m home in the flatlands my cheap terrorist phone works fine again—no umbrella needed. I’ll continue to hatch plots and write my stories—and scheme ways to convince my husband to dance with me on the patio. Maybe with a box of wine…