Merry Christmas: God Bless Us Every One

ANOTHER one of my writing teachers, Sue Diaz, also got some good ink. This is from her pen, and really sums up what is important about Christmas, whether you are Christian or not:

A Christmas apart

A mother’s story of a son away at war, the phone that may not ring, but the traditions intact

….. Thank you Sue (and Candace Toft too!) , for helping me become a “more powerful writer” can it have been over a year ago?? where does the time go?

One of my Writing Coaches…

My friend and writing coach Jill Badonsky got some good ink the other day in the San Diego Union Tribune.

Jill teaches classes every Third Thursday (say that ten times fast!) I consider her “classes” to be less like school and more like recess. There is a lot of writing, some Read, but no Critique. It’s all about fun. We hang out for a couple of hours and play with words.

Note, however, we have a word POOL, not a word “pull” as the above article references. You know, like “pooling” our verbal resources. DOH!

Barbie: A Love Hate Relationship

I LOVED Barbie as a kid. Really Really. I would set up the most elaborate condos made of cardboard boxes. I even crocheted a bedspread for my Barbie. Correction, Barbies. I had tons of them: Barbie, Midge, Francie, Stacie….

I had one hand-me-down from my sister, an old straight-legged Barbie with blue eyeshadow and stiff blond hair. She looked old. I would name her something like Madge, or Louise and her role would be the mean step mother, or more often the mean lady who ran the boarding house where the other girls lived. My favorite was a Stacie doll, with beautiful long red hair in a pony tail that reached down to her waist. Another favorite was my traditional blond Barbie and a brunette who’s hair was styled a la Marlo Thomas in “That Girl.” Of course I only had one Ken doll. At some point, his arm came out of the socket, so he wore a rubber band “sling” the result of some exotic activity like skiing or mountain climbing. I had a Barbie convertible too.

I would play out intricate story lines that would make a screenwriter weep. OK, well, maybe a screenwriter for Made-For-TV mini series, as the story would go on for days. I hated having to put my Barbies away….

Then at some point I hated Barbie…. the idea of Barbie. The impossible ideal of Barbie. The skinny bitch Barbie. The skinny bitch with her perfectly pert boobs, and her teeny tiny waist. She even had perfect legs. If you consider thighs that are no wider than her arms perfect… Barbie wasn’t knock kneed. Barbie didn’t wear braces. Barbie didn’t wear size 36″ Levis. Barbie never had a pimple. Barbie had a perfect boyfriend (even if he always had to wear a sling).

But I never hated her enough to mutilate her!

I am nostalgic for for Barbie, for the love of Barbie. Or maybe its for the stories I created, I don’t know. But a couple of years ago, some neighbor girls were selling some of their old toys to raise money for something. And there, in a bright orange felt suit, a Stacie doll with her lovely red ponytail. I bought her for a dollar, and she sits on my bookshelf. Right next to Janet Burroway’s Writing Fiction

On Giving

My boss Jim is so cool. And a really nice person… always positive and upbeat but not in an annoying overly perky yet fake kind of way. He told us the other day we are closing our office ( – gotta get the plug / link in) the week after Christmas and we all get the time off WITH pay, extra. How Cool Is That?

Anyway, he and his family (adorable 4-year-old Sienna and super nice wife Gina, who drop in every now and again with treats like Jamba Juice, and fun suprises) gave the gift of livestock this year…. through Heifer International. I just love this idea.

I wish I could Whistle a Polka

Old news, I know, but this story is so wonderful. You gotta love a world where a transvestite can make a living as a whistler.


“Jeanette Schmid, Austria’s last professional whistler, who once shared a stage with Frank Sinatra, has died of the flu at 80, a newspaper reported March 10.

Ms. Schmid, better known as Baroness Lips von Lipstrill….. born as a man in what now is the Czech Republic”….MORE…

religion and god and stuff

I seem to be writing/thinking a lot about religious stuff of late. Maybe it began back in July when I met my mom’s high school sweetheart… who asked if I went to church. Strange question that. I have never asked anyone that. It doesn’t matter to me. I guess if pressed, I would say I believe in god, but not the kind the talk about in church. My god is more sort of the life force that binds us all together (“May the Force Be With You” always resonated with me.) I would include animals there too… not to mention ewoks. It’s what is in us that is beyond the flesh and blood.

Then you have the Christians… they’re everywhere, and they seem to be involved in scandals all over the place! Well, at least at the same rate as us non-bible thumpers. I really don’t feel like going there now, though. Suffice it to say any time anyone tries to force anything down my throat I’m apt to reject it, and suspect their motives for being so adamant.

My mom believed in God. I think I forgot that about her…

And then I found the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I was so excited, I invited all my friends to join me.

Julie declined to join me, saying “Thank you, Jenn. But I have recently joined Our Lady of Fettuccini here in Alhambra and there are so many Olive Garden dinners coming up that I don’t think I’ll have time for your church.” heathen.

Ralph said “If it ain’t freshly made Angel Hair then I’m not going.”

Yea, well, I guess they are both goin’ to hell. Or McDonalds, I’m not sure, I’ll have to check the tenets of my new faith, but no more pasta thumpin’ for me!