Carrie Harris | Young Adult Author

Friday, February 27, 2009

Contextarama

I've been thinking about context lately, which sounds serious, but we all know will take a sharp detour into Ludicrous Land some time in the not-so-distant future. See, context is important to writers. Too much context, and your readers end up slogging through pages of description at approximately the same speed you'd use swimming across an ocean made of blue raspberry Jell-o. Admittedly, I've never swam through Jell-o, but I imagine it would be slow going. And then, if you put too little context in, you end up with what feels like two severed heads having a conversation. And while I can see the comic potential in such a conversation, I'm not sure it's really the right choice for everyone.

So context is important. One time, I saw a production of Romeo and Juliet where they decided to be all experimental and set it on a spaceship. Which made for some terrific costumes but otherwise added nothing to R&J. I think that instead of stabbing people with swords they put them out the airlock, and I think that Romeo sounded a little like Darth Vader when he had his helmet on, but maybe I made that last part up. I don't really remember the show; I blocked it out.

All of this came to mind quite vividly (except for the parts that I don't remember) yesterday when I found myself shouting, "Eat the baby already!

Please don't run away. Once I tell you the context, it'll make a lot more sense. See, my twin girls, Left and Right, were eating cereal. And Left shows me a spoon full of Cocoa Puffs and says, "Baby!"

"Cereal," I respond, pointing to it.

"Baby!"

"Cereal."

"BABY!"

"It's not a baby; it's sear-eee-all." I say it slowly this time, like that's going to make her stop being stubborn. Kind of like people talk really slowly to foreigners, like speaking in slo-mo is the key to learning a new language in 15 seconds or less. Yeah, I'm dumb.

"BABY!!!!!" This time, she pounds her hand on the table, so I know she's serious.

"Fine. Eat the baby already."

See? With the context, it makes sense. And it didn't involve a spaceship or Richard Simmons. I'm so proud of myself.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Random Random Bo Bandom

It's time for another mismash of random things. Ready, spaghetti? Here we go.

Things that I've read this week, with haiku reviews:

The Adoration of Jenna Fox
Don't be fooled by the
Butterfly cover, this is
A great sci-fi book

Interworld
Gaiman fan alert!
If you haven't read this one, you're
Really missing out

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
Feel like laughing?
This one is thought provoking
And sacrilicious

Paper Towns
Symbolism oozes
From the pages, which is cool
But kinda messy


Search phrases that people used to get to The Wonder That Is My Blog recently:

Zombie in your heart: I'm not sure whether this refers to love of zombies or a cardiac infestation, but either way, it's wrong with a capital ONG.

Goat sword: Er... huh? Is it a sword shaped like a goat? A sword made out of goat? Or a goat holding a sword? (Just so long as it's not a goat holding a sword shaped like a goat and made out of goat meat, because there's such a thing as overkill.)

How to make a snarf: Ah, grasshopper. You've come to the right place. The question is how you'd like to make your snarf. Do you plan to crochet it, weld it out of chicken wire, or concentrate really hard and see if you have heretofore undiscovered mental powers that allow you to materialize things out of thin air?

If you do, we need to talk. Because I need a new car.

Implants explode while scuba diving: Man, I hate it when that happens.

And last, but not least, I bring you my superhero, which is courtesy of fabulous agent Kate (aka Daphne Unfeasible) and my idols at the Hero Factory.


That's MS. Mighty Feathered Whip Lash to you!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

In the Event of Famousness - Unreasonable Requests

I can't believe it's been so long since I did one of these entries. Christy deserves a big shout out and one of those badges that I don't know how to design for reminding me about it. Yay, Christy!

Anyway, for you newbies out there, the premise is simple. I'm giving you things to think about in the event that you become famous, because there are certain standards of famousity that we must uphold. Previously, we've come up with pithy answers to interview questions, talked about the need for people and planned our celebrations. So there's your update.

Today, we're going to talk about unreasonable requests. Every celebrity needs to make unreasonable requests, particularly when they travel, because otherwise people might not realize that this person is a celebrity and then the world will implode. And let me tell you something: world implosion is bad. No, really. So it's important to have some unreasonable requests prepared in advance just in case fifteen minutes of fame pounce at you all of a sudden, kind of like a puppy. Or a mugger. Take your pick; my imagery is your imagery.

So what are some good unreasonable requests? I'm thinking those completely random things like: I want a bowl of M&Ms in my room, but I only want the blue ones. I seem to remember some celebrity asking for this but can't figure out who it is. Whoever they are, they're not allowed to come to my house, because the blue M&Ms are MINE.

I figure that's as good an excuse as any.

So my unreasonable request is simple: when I get off an airplane, I want a limo to be waiting for me. And I want my limo driver to be dressed like zombie Richard Simmons. I want him (or her... because I'm equal opportunity Richard Simmons zombification) to lurch while carrying my bags. Performance of zombie pushups, complete with loud and reverberating "UUUUUUHHhh!" sounds are bonus points that will result in a big tip from me.

There are a few reasons for this. 1) I'm on a Richard Simmons kick lately. 2) It would make it really easy to pick my driver out of a crowd. No looking around for those stupid placards with your name on them. And then when you find the placard, it doesn't matter how simple your name is, they still manage to spell it wrong. And let's face it, 'Harris' ain't tough, but it's happened to me on business trips. And 3) it's freaking hilarious.

So that's my unreasonable request. And I derive lots of amusement from picturing the limo driver's face at the moment that he hears about this.

"She wants me to dress up as WHAT?!?!"

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Things That Make Me Snarf - Zombie Killer

Here's this week's Thing That Makes Me Snarf.



I just can't find anything to say that's funnier than this video. Slayer introduced me to Leslie and the Lys a while back, so you have him to thank for this one. My favorite is when the zombies start to sing. Because singing zombies are the height of coolness. Coolocity. Coolification, even.

So during the long car ride to Indiana and back, Scillius Maximus and I were talking about how cool it would be to do a zombie pub crawl. Get a bunch of people to dress up like zombies and lurch around downtown, scaring people and drinking beer. Frankly, I think that the further you do this from Halloween, the more effective it would be. I think it would be a blast.

But then that got me thinking, and we all know how dangerous that is. And I thought that zombie bowling might be fun. Or zombie croquet. I'd love to get a bunch of people together to do zombie croquet. And then I had it: the idea to trump all ideas.

Get a bunch of zombies together to do Richard Simmons' Sweating to the Oldies.

My mother has a copy. I really could make it happen. Because really, zombies deserve cardiovascular health too. They may not have operational cardiovascular systems, but who cares? Half of my ex-boyfriends had negative IQ points, but that didn't stop them from going to school.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Baby Sniffers Anonymous

We're back! Indiana is still standing. Relatively unscathed, even.

On the trip, Scillius Maximus the Great (fo' shizzle) pointed out something to me, and I feel strongly compelled to share it all with you. Picture me standing up at a podium and speaking into one of those microphones with annoyingly loud feedback:

"My name is Carrie. I'm addicted to new baby smell. I was new baby smell free for about six months, but I fell off the wagon this weekend, and I'm so ashamed. And will someone fix this damned microphone before I commit seppuku? That whine is TRES annoying."

I really did fall off the wagon. We saw some of our closest friends this weekend; I'm talking the kinds of friends that you call brother and sister even though you're probably more like seven-hundredth cousins. (Because we're all related in some way, if you think about it. Which means that I am related to Richard Simmons. I'm strangely pleased by that. Amusedly pleased, but pleased nonetheless.) Anyway, I also got to hold my new "nephew" (i.e., seven-hundredth-and-first cousin... or should that be seven-hundred-and-oneth?). And then I got off the wagon and smelled the new baby smell again. (There's no reason for these parentheses; I just decided that if I was going to go for parenthetic overkill, I might as well do it up right.)

So there I am, sniffing the baby, when I realize that people are starting to look at me funny. But I can't help it; there's nothing like the smell of a new baby. Let me rephrase: a CLEAN new baby. There's nothing like the smell of a CLEAN new baby.

And now I'm hooked again. We're going to the grocery store, and mid-morning on Mondays is usually a good time for New Mommy Grocerification. I predict that we're going to see a lot of new babies. So if you're having a bad day, I invite you to amuse yourself by imagining me getting ousted from the grocery store for baby sniffing.

Someone should try and bottle that stuff. But don't look at me; I'm already going to be thrown out for sniffing the babies. I'd hate to imagine what they'd do to me if I said I was trying to bottle their smell.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Pack Like the Wind!

We're going to Indiana this weekend. (Why oh why is "Going Back to Cali" stuck in my head now?) Staying in a hotel, hanging with some friends, doing a little training for volunteer type work. And it falls to me to do the packing. Of course it does; Slayer works long hours, and I don't. Rather, he works long hours out of the house and I work long hours IN the house, so really, I'm still the better suited of the two to do the job. And whew was that one heck of a convoluted sentence or what?

Anyway, I know I need to carefully plan what we bring. Twin two-year-olds and a five-year-old come complete with their own messes kinda like Barbie comes with accessories. We need extra clothes for them if we don't want to look like the messy white trash family.

And really, I've had enough of looking like white trash. At the end of my twin pregnancy, I was so huge that even extra-large stuff didn't fit me, and my belly stuck out of the bottom. Honestly? I contemplated a muu-muu. Don't tell anyone, though. It's our little secret.

What I really want to do is take a big handful of stuff and throw it in the bags. What I shall do is more responsible: I'll pick up LITTLE handfuls so that it's not wrinkly when we get there.

And with that, I'm off to try to find photos in our wreck of an office. Why do I promise people pictures and then forget about it until absolutely the last minute?

Answer: Because I am an idiot. But at least I don't look like white trash.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Baby Got Weird Teachers

Teachers. I've got teachers on the brain, which sounds like some kooky medical condition but isn't. I'm just obsessing about books again. See, my books all have these wonked out teachers that do strange things. Like the one that looks like a leprechaun but thinks she's a gangsta. Prime example right there. And of course, I write comedy, so you kind of expect people to be generally wonked out, right?

But the thing is that I had teachers like that when I was in high school, and I'm wondering if I'm the only one. (Like maybe I attract weird people. It's my super(ish)power.) My personal favorite was my American History teacher. He used to do an impression of a frottager, which is a person who gets their jollies from bumping into people. So he'd careen down the aisle between the desks, running into chairs and yelling, "Frottage! Frottage!"

Which sounds creepy when I write it but was not at all. It was freaking hilarious.

This teacher was the purveyor of the Happy Clicking Notebook. We all had to have three ring notebooks for our handouts, and he ran a contest to see which ones had the best click. He gave all of our textbooks silly nicknames: mine was the Bolshevik Bailey, because it was red and was written by a guy named Bailey. Thanks to him, I know a pithy little song listing all of the presidents, and after all this time I still remember it.

Every year, he won the best teacher award, and he deserved it, because the kookiness made us pay attention. I learned more in that class than I did in all the others combined, and I've never been a big American history buff.

Because really... how many teachers would assign you an oral project about the history of music and laugh hysterically while one of the biggest nerds in the school lipsynched to "Baby Got Back"? Not many.

So am I alone in this and doomed to an eternity of attracting weird people, or did some of you have strange teachers too?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Haiku Reviews

So I've been slacking on the Read 50 Books in 2009 Challenge. I've been reading up a storm, but I haven't told you about it. I'm a bad, bad person. Somebody flog me with a wet noodle.

Just not through the computer, because you'll end up with noodle marks on your monitor. Trust me. I know these things.

Without further ado, here are some reviews of books that you might enjoy. In haiku. The reviews, not the books. Duh.

The Eyre Affair
Four thousand Miltons
And a bad guy named Jack Schitt
I laughed my butt off

*Note that this one gets a star from me. Fforde has earned a place among comedy greats like Prachett and Adams with this one.

Evil Genius
Super hacker kid
Goes to supervillain school
And blows it all up

Tietam Brown
This has good writing
But after reading it I
Needed a shower

*Note that this one has some seriously graphic adult content. When I say that I needed a shower, I wasn't kidding. It creeped me out.

Horrors of the Dancing Gods
Why do I keep on
Reading parts of a series
But not the first one?

Catalyst
Chemistry genius
Completely falls apart here
It's like a car crash

Across the Wall
A book of short tales
My favorite was a surprise
Arthurian myth

Lost in a Good Book
Jasper Fforde is
A staggering genius of
Literary snarf

You Are So Undead to Me
If you're looking for
Some zombie hunter action
This was a fun read

And that takes me to 17 reads out of 50. Woot! Any new recommendations for me? Lady Glamis is officially named Bestish Friendish of The Wonder That Is My Blog for her recommendation of The Eyre Affair. I need to make a badge or something that people can put on their blogs.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Things That Make Me Snarf - Language Fail

I promise that this week's Thing That Makes Me Snarf will not make you want to take your brain out and soak it in disinfectant.



It really makes me think of that girl that was in my water aerobics class. I mentioned her once in passing; she used to sing, "Guilty feelings, hot diddle diddle," when it was supposed to be "Guilty feet have got no rhythm."

Careless Whispers. Wham! I am such an 80's geek.

I was friends with that girl, and one time I convinced her that the words to Toto's "Africa" were "I left my brains down in Africa." I know; I should be ashamed of myself. But it was funny.

Speaking of language, can I get something off my chest? I hate it when people say, "I found it the last place I looked for it." Well, DUH. That's because when you find something, you generally stop looking. This inaccuracy bothers me so much that I've vowed to keep looking at least two or three more places after I've found something.

Do you see the lengths I go to in order to save the world from poor grammar?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Bad clones! No biscuit!

I've always said that I'd like to have some clones to do boring things like laundry and clean the bathroom floor. But I was thinking about it yesterday, and I've kind of reevaluated that stance. Stick with me here: let's say that I made a bunch of Carrieclones and set them to work doing menial stuff like dishes and things like that. I'd have picketers outside of my house in minutes, waving around signs like, "Clone Equality!" and "A Clone's a Person Too!"

To which I'd wave a middle finger and reply, "Clone you!" but that doesn't really solve the problem.

To solve the problem, you'd have to make sure that the clones aren't technically human. So I'd leave out things like most of the brain and maybe add a prehensile tail while I'm at it because that would be cool. Now, I can argue that the Carrieclones are definitely not human, and they can pull down their pants and prove it.

The tail, people. Get your minds out of the gutter.

So now, I've got clones that are obviously non-human. They don't think like humans, they have tails, and they tend to drop trou a lot. But then there's another problem. Let's say that I send a Carrieclone to do my grocery shopping. Only she has the intelligence of a brick and ends up dropping her pants in front of the meat counter.

And people think it's me.

Gosh, these clones are really getting annoying, and they're imaginary. So now I've got to either brand their foreheads with the phrase "I'm a clone, you idiot!" or I've got to write it on their foreheads with magic marker every morning. And oh my god, I forgot about getting them dressed. I get twins dressed every morning, and I can tell you that it's no picnic. You think you're going to color code their clothes and make them all cutesy, but after about week two of Living with Twins, you just make sure that whatever you pick up is clean, has approximately the correct number of arm/leg/head holes, and is semi-appropriate for the climate. And now I'm going to have to dress all the clones on top of everything else, and they'll probably fight over the shirt with "I do bad things" written in sequins on it, because after all, they're MY twins, and that's my favorite shirt, and I've only got one shirt and seventeen clones that will probably rip it to pieces, and then I will have no shirt.

And the moral of this story is that if you'd like to have clones, you'd better be resigned to going topless.

I'm exhausted now. No clones for me.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Things That Make Me Snarf - Cubby

So... here's this week's Thing That Makes Me Snarf.



I really think that the leotard makes the whole video. (Makes it what? Snarfalicious. Disturbing. Take your pick.)

When I was younger, my cousin and I used to record ourselves doing fake radio shows. I was Carrie Casem, the DJ. (Groan-worthy. I know.) We made up new lyrics to Prince songs and danced around in her closet recording them.

Because the closet was our recording studio, of course.

I wonder what makes people post things like this on the internet where anyone can see. It's the same kind of people who try out for American Idol wearing a chicken suit, right? But the thing that makes me laugh the hardest is thinking about what will happen when they apply for jobs, or when an ex-girlfriend tries to Google them.

I tried Googling some of my ex-boyfriends just a minute ago. I found nothing entertaining like this. Not a single leotard-wearing dancer among them, darn it. One of them is a lawyer, for god's sake.

ATTENTION EX-BOYFRIENDS OF CARRIE! WE NEED SOME EMBARRASSING YOUTUBE FOOTAGE, STAT! PREFERABLY NOTHING THAT INCRIMINATES ME! (Pretty please?)

Oh, and happy VD everyone.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Rain Brain

I'm starting to feel human again. Or as close as I come, anyway. Thanks for all the well-wishes and stuff.

Blah de blah blah blah. Moving on...

It's raining today. And if the meterologists are correct (excuse me while I snarf), it will rain all day. My family is pretty rain compatible, because we are not related to the Wicked Witch of the West and we are not wusses. Before the girls were born, Slayer and I used to take the Batson out to the huge patio behind our building, and we'd play in the rain. We'd splash each other in puddles. We'd get out the Nerf balls, soak them, and throw them at each other.

In short, we acted like the childlike people we truly are. And note that I say childlike instead of childish. Childish people make me want to hold up one hand and say, "See this? I want you to use it to throttle yourself."

So one day, it was raining, and we were outside doing our thing. And that's when I noticed that someone was moving in to the apartment above ours. They came outside to say hello, which was nice. So we're introducing ourselves, when the guy says, "Uh... should he be doing that?"

Because the Batson was down on his hands and knees, drinking out of a puddle.

They got a little alarmed when we just laughed and said he was getting his fiber. It was just a JOKE, people. We made him stop. And then, the guy looks at me and says, "You look familiar."

We eventually figured out that this was because he used to room with my ex-boyfriend. The one that got the cue ball stuck in his mouth.

So by this time, I figure I've made a great impression. And their kids come out to see what we're doing, and they want to play in the rain too. I'm pretty surprised when the parents allow it, because I've got to figure that they're a little scared of these rain-dancing, puddle-drinking, cue-ball-idiot-dating people. But they let the kids come down anyway. And we all run around in the rain, having a great time.

That's when I hear the mom say to the dad: "We're going to have to give them a bath when they get inside." You know, to wash off the rain.

I didn't feel so bad then.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Insert Witty Title Here

I'm still sick, which sucks rocks. I'm just too tired to be funny, so I've decided to let you do all the work. Here are some recent searches that have led people to my site.

"Carrie Fisher legs missing"
I cannot figure out why anyone would want to search for this unless they found the legs. And really, if I found a pair of dismembered legs on my front doorstep, Carrie Fisher is one of the last people I would think about.

"Ninja love"
Yeah, so you remember how I made up that witty song to the tune of "Jungle Love" in honor of Ninja Appreciation Week? Apparently, it's also the title of a cartoon. And the cartoon is... er... let's just say that it takes the concept of ninja love to extreme and graphic detail. Let me just get it out in the open, kids. You aren't going to get THAT kind of ninja love here.

"Whoops I said the quiet part loud and the loud part quiet"
I hate it when that happens. And the loud part is inevitably the embarrassing part. Like where you admit that you have a copy of "Ninja Love."

"Star Wars sweater vests"
What do they make them out of? Wookie hair?

"Werewolf mugshots"
I have this mental picture of a big hairy Cuisinart giving a big cheesy grin.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

You Don't Like to Play Tennis, Do You?

I'm sick again, so today's entry is going to be brief but poignant.

Quit laughing. I could be poignant if I wanted to.

I've learned a lot about life from commercials. For example, thanks to commercials, I know that people who enjoy doing active things like volleyball, hiking, and walks on the beach inevitably have herpes. I know that men with erectile dysfunction often show other symptoms like problems with the plumbing in their kitchen, which strikes me as very fitting. I know that unhappiness with things like your birth control, mode of transportation, or life in general can suck all the color out of your body and clothing, turning you into a black and white person.

I can't believe some people leave the room when the commercials come on. They're missing out on important public service announcements.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Zombie Love... Like Ninja Love But Different

All good choices on Vampire, Werewolf, and Zombie from last week, peeps. Personally, I think Jane is the vampire, because drawing room romance just seems vampish to me. And Shakespeare is the zombie, because of this little known variation on one of his sonnets: "How do I love thee? Let me count the brains."

And I'm a werewolf. Because I am. Don't argue with me, or I'll wolf out and destroy my study. Which isn't much of a threat to you, but I hope you'll take pity on me.

Anyway. Skillius Maximus the Great (fo shizzle) brought over a new game to play on Saturday. It's called Zombies!!!, and I think I might be in love with it. The premise is simple: you move your guy around through herds of rampaging zombies. To win, you either kill a plethora of undead or wuss out and go for the helipad to escape.

Yeah, Slayer won. He flew off in a helipad without me. And I had the biggest body count, because I am bitchly.

Now, the best part of the whole thing is figuring out what to do with your zombies, because you get a little zombie figurine for every one you kill. There are girl zombies with big chesticals and carrying a severed head. And there are boy zombies with exposed rib cages, who are holding out one hand like they want something.

Like maybe a severed head.

And this has potential. Serious potential. In between turns, I sent my zombies out on dates. "A severed head? Oh, Phyllis, you shouldn't have." I put them into a kick line. I made them prominade. I even got one of the girls to put one of the boys in a headlock. I think he probably tried to touch her head without permission.

And this, my friends, is why some people are embarrassed to go out with me in public. But either way, I absolutely recommend this game, because it was tres fun.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Vampire, Werewolf, or Zombie - The Literary Version

Okay, it's time for another game of Vampire, Werewolf, or Zombie. For those of you who haven't played before, it's simple. I give you three people. You tell me which one is the vampire, which one is the werewolf, and which one is the zombie. And then I make fun of you because you're wrong.

Erk. Wait. That last part isn't true. I mean, I might laugh a little on the inside, but I would never make fun of you. I'm too busy making fun of myself.

I really need to get better at this whole multitasking thing.

So, today's game is the literary version of vampire, werewolf, or zombie. Because Hollywood ain't the only place that's full of supernatural beasties. And really, do you think that a normal human could really have written "Gone with the Wind"? Rhett was a vampire, and so was Margaret Mitchell.

Trust me. I have sources.

So here's your challenge. Out of the following list of people, who is the vampire, who is the werewolf, and who is the zombie? Your choices are:

William Shakespeare
Jane Austen
You

That's right. You! Most of the people who read The Wonder That Is My Blog are bookish types, either in the reading or writing category. And really, I do this because it may be the only time in your life that you are put on a list with Shakespeare and Austen. Unless that list is "People Who Have Two Hands," in which case you're on the list with them and a few trillion other blokes. So I'm really doing it as a public service to you. Don't get all huffy about it, or I'll send the ninjas after you.

So bring on those answers. Will you doom yourself to an eternity of blood-drinking, years of superfluous hair, or a bunch of lurching and moaning? And don't the options sound great when I put them that way?

Thursday, February 5, 2009

VD, Muppets, and Lime-Scented Heinies

So Valentine's Day is coming up, which you probably already knew but I like to point out the obvious. Generally, Slayer and I don't do a whole lot for VD. I used to call it that when I was in college, because I thought it was funny to walk around saying, "Happy VD!" to people. Because, of course, it IS funny.

But seriously. We don't do a lot for VD, because if you have to wait for VD to show your loved one how special they are, then you've got problems. We usually try to work in a date night somewhere near VD, and maybe we do a card, but that's usually about it. Now, I have to admit that this anti-VD stance may have to do with the fact that we don't have a whole lot of cashola right now, which kind of kills the hot tub filled with champagne idea.

Because really, if you can't fill your hot tub with champagne, what CAN you fill it with? Although having said that, I'm starting to think this might not be a good idea, because someone left a lemon-lime energy drink in the steam room at the gym, and it smelled like fried ass in there. Lime-scented fried ass to be exact.

So maybe I'd better scrap the bathing in heated champagne thing.

I'm going to interrupt this tangent to point out that I just reread this entry and have NO clue what the hell I'm talking about. Just wanted to make that point clear in case you're feeling lost. Don't worry. I'm lost right along with you.

Okay. Back to the VD and the lime-scented ass.

Actually, I've said everything I can think of about those things. Back to the VD-related gifts. I used to be a big VD mix tape girl, because I am a child of the 80s, and mix tapes are freaking cool. Although Slayer does not appreciate my mix tape fabulousness. This may be due to the fact that I once put a song on both sides of the same tape, and apparently he didn't like that song much to begin with. That, and I don't think he really appreciates my tendency to stick in random songs by the Animaniacs or the Muppets. They work especially well after love ballads or booty shaking songs. Nothing segues better with Eminem than a little "Rainbow Connection."

It's my personal opinion that no mix tape is complete without a Muppet, not even if it's VD-related. And those are two subjects that I never thought I would put in the same sentence. I'd better stop before the tangents get out of control and take over the world. Although what a VD-laden, lime-scented world it would be.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Things That Make Me Snarf - The Metal

I want to be the robot.



The best part of being the robot would be getting to put it on your resume later. Because you'd get to come up with a title first, like "Giant Jiggy Automaton," because everyone knows that it's important to inflate your title on a resume. You should never admit to being a Fry Cook on a resume. Instead, you should be a Purveyor of Potatoey Goodness. Similarly, you should never be "Guy Who Dresses Up in a Robot Costume and Pretends to Dance Around." "Giant Jiggy Automaton" sounds much better.

And then you'd have to list your jiggy robotic skills. And really, how could Human Resources turn down someone who has "perform in a kick line with Jack Black" as a potential employee? It's impossible, unless the people in Human Resources aren't really human. If they're droids who are obsessed with the Rockettes, as all droids are, then you'd pretty much be out of luck with the whole jiggy robot thing. Although maybe you could get a job working for Will Smith. Or Michael Jackson.

Wow. I have no idea where I was going with that.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Me Tree

I can't stop thinking about ninjas.

It's not that surprising, really. I live with one (although he doesn't normally wear the cowl around the house). Ninja Appreciation Week has just ended. My next book has ninjas in it. One of my critique groups has a wannabe ninja in it. (And a wannabe robot, but that's another story.)

So yeah. I can't get them out of my head.

And you know what I think would be really cool? A ninja werewolf. Just picture it: A dimly lit forest. Tendrils of mist winding through the trees. A stand of pines. And right in the middle of it, a big furball in a ninja suit and cowl, tufts of hair sticking out at the seams. I picture him standing with his arms up in the air, going, "Me tree."

Because werewolves aren't exactly silver tongued, eh?

Get it? SILVER tongued? Sometimes I crack myself up.

Of course, then you've got to figure out what to call the ninja werewolf, because why use a boring two word name when you can come up with a silly one word name? It could be a werewonja. Or a werejawolf.

This conversation of course leads me to contemplate other types of ninja. Like the ninpire, whose teeth are pointier than his shuriken. And the djinnja. He grants wishes, but only if they involve things that are black, things that are pointy, and lawn flamingos. And the tooth finja, who comes in the middle of the night to take your teeth. When you're forty. And he uses pliers.

I may have to go as the tooth finja for Halloween next year, because that's freaking amusing. Slayer can be the werewonja. The kids can be mininjas. We'll be one big happy ninja family. Even if Daddy thinks he's a tree.

Monday, February 2, 2009

I Bet Parent Teacher Conferences Are REALLY Interesting

I'm starting to work on my next book, which is always exciting. At least for me. It's probably boring as bleep for everyone around me, because it's practically all I can talk about. I don't have trouble coming up with book ideas, as I've mentioned before. But still, I keep thinking about how people say that there are no original stories, so there's some pressure to come up with something original, or at least an original twist on a familiar concept.

The easiest way to do this is to get into a bunch of wild situations and then draw on them for your writing, but I would never do that. Snarf.

But seriously, do you believe that there are no original stories? Because I don't, and I'll tell you why.

I worked in research for a long time, and one of my projects involved administering confidential surveys to people about their health and risky behaviors. We didn't pull any punches; I asked people about drug use, unprotected naked time, and domestic violence. It always amused me that people would tell me that they cheated on their spouses or used cocaine but not how much they weighed.

Anyway, I once got a survey from someone who obviously decided to make everything up. I say this because I was proctoring the survey, and I know for a fact that none of the respondents was a 500 pound midget. I would have noticed that. And it got more outrageous from there. My respondent was a crack-addicted, transgendered, hermaphroditic (how you could be both transgendered and hermaphroditic at the same time, I don't know, but he/she/it was), fight clubbing, no toothed, STD-riddled, severely obese little person, and also a parent of 15 children.

And you've got to wonder, what do the kids call him/her/it? Mom? Dad? Your Wonkiness?

So I've decided to write a book about that person. Because I am sure that it's a story that hasn't been told.

Speaking of stories, I've added a few more books to the Read 50 Books in 2009 challenge. I read The Batman Handbook (very cool except that they did not mention eyebrows ONCE), Deathworld (which my teenage Christopher Pike loving self would have adored), and The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish (which is made of awesome).
 


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