It's my policy not to put people I know into my books. Some days, I regret this policy. For example, my best friend married this great guy who is SCREAMING to be in a comedy book. He's tall, bald, and can channel the spirit of Jon Lovitz, which is even more impressive when you consider that Lovitz is still alive.
That's a really cool idea for a book: an impressionist who actually channels spirits. One minute, you're a famous Hollywood actor, sitting at the dinner table and eating bean sprouts off five million dollar plates because that's the only way you're going to make bean sprouts remotely palatable, and the next minute, you're looking out of the eyes of Mr. Bald and your voice is coming out of his mouth.
Of course, that's kind of like Being John Malkovich, isn't it? Which is sheer genius if you haven't seen it.
Anyway, Mr. Bald recently told me a story about how his mother called to tell him that her horse died and he felt really bad because he couldn't stop giggling. Which sounds really callous of him, except that the horse was standing in the middle of the woods, and it got struck by lightning. Not the trees. The horse.
Which goes to show you: if you're stuck in a thunderstorm, don't hide under a horse.
Now how can I resist putting that into a book? But then I'd want to take the character based on Mr. Bald (let's call him Mr. Hairy), and I'd want to turn him into a zombie parrot or drop him into a tank full of mutant bilingual piranha. I think he might take the piranha personally.
Which makes me think of the guys I went to college with, who paid off their student loans with piranha betting. They put beer in the piranha tank and then took bets on which drunk piranha would actually manage to catch one of the feeder fish. At the time, I found this funny. And again, it's screaming to be put into a book. But the good news is that I don't know those guys any more, so if I feed their characters to to a tank of mutant bilingual piranha, they won't know that they ought to be offended.
Addendum: BTW, I forgot to mention that I have been the victim of a Blogger curse the past couple of days, and my comments have only been working sporadically. I sacrificed two piece of white bread to Ramrod this morning and hopefully all is well again. Sorry. (Not like I think commenting on my blog is the highlight of your day or something.)