lost in jane austen

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Think about it,Thursday - The Dingleberry Story

Have you ever thought you knew a word's meaning or just thought it was a cutesy term and wanted to use it? Have you ever called your minister at church a dingleberry and then watched as he turned raspberry red and looked like a deer caught in the headlights?

Did you then, rush out to your car, grab your cell phone and Google it? And then, turn raspberry red and move on to blackberry purple and look like a deer caught in the headlights?

Just some random thoughts...it certainly NEVER happened to me. =)

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Humorous Ode to Mardi Gras (Bio to Bs...look for a version of this story in an upcoming Emma Wood novel)

Who doesn't love the New Orleans French Quarter? It's like visiting a foreign land without the hassle of showing your passport or the likelihood of dysentery. And when you add in Mardi Gras, it's like heaven on earth. Well, if heaven was about drunkenness and debauchery. I'm more of a jewelry girl, so for me, it's all about the beads! What is it about useless plastic beads that gets me so excited? I wait all year for the opportunity to catch these ugly bobbles and obviously…I’m not alone.

A few years ago, we were in  New Orleans for one of the parades. We waited on the street, eyes glazed over in the anticipation of  catching colorful trinkets. Finally, the mayhem ensued. Beads were flying everywhere and I wasn’t above elbowing children, tripping grannies and crawling on my hands and knees,  in order to add to my loot.

Covered in beads we reached the apex of the frenzied pursuit, when the Nike float arrived. They were throwing out all sorts of fun Nike paraphernalia. As I was jumping for a wrist band headed my way, I saw a bigger object hurling towards me.  When I landed back on earth, after an amazing LeBron James type of jump, I realized I had caught a shoe.  Wow, that had to be the holy grail of parade trinkets. I was so proud of my prize that I didn’t even wonder, what I would do with ONE size 13 shoe.

Above the shouts of the crowd, I hear this guy yelling, “She’s got my shoe, she’s got my shoe!” Everyone in the general vicinity turned to stare and I realized the one shoed guy was talking about me. It seems that in his exuberance to catch Nike stuff, he had kicked off his shoe. I looked down at my prized shoe and for the first time realized it wasn’t new. It wasn't even a Nike and there was a not-so-pleasant odor emanating from it. Even then, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to part with my prize. But finally, I came out of my bead frenzied haze and handed over the shoe.

As Barry and I trudged back to our hotel room weighted down by tons of beads I realized that in my heart the count down had already begun until once again, I could jump for the beads or... even an old shoe.

Thanks to all of the Etsy shops for loaning me pictures of their wonderful Mardi Gras creations!! I hope you will check them out. Support Handmade...go shopping on Etsy!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Writing Life...The Spelling Conspiracy

Now, that I use Twitter and instant messaging more, my spelling has taken a nose dive. When I tweet or IM, I actually spell things incorrectly on purpose to save space and time. Now, when I’m writing or posting to our blog, occasionally I will pause and wait for Spell Check’s red line to appear. And often, when it doesn’t appear, I look at the word in question and think, is that really how you spell that…should I Google it?
And what’s the deal with homonyms. People know what you mean. When you’re talking, no one ever stops and says, “When I just said ‘there’ I meant t-h-e-r-e, not t-h-e-i-r.” Although it’s the kind of thing I notice…when someone else uses the wrong word, in the whole scheme of things, does it really matter?

I’ve had years to learn how to spell words correctly. I really feel sorry for kids that are just learning to spell. When they grow up will there even be a correct way to spell things? Or will we finally figure out, as any third grader can tell you, learning to spell things correctly is just some big conspiracy to cut down on our play time?

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

My Grandparents are spawns of the devil... Bio to Bs

My grandparents came to visit us, when I was six. When they got ready to leave, they invited me to come with them to stay at their house for a week. My first road trip without my parents...I was practically an adult.
As we motored through the rural lands of east Texas, my grandfather pointed out different types of birds and trees. Suddenly excited, he said to my grandmother, "Lois, look at those cat tails." Naturally, my head whipped around. I couldn't see them and yelled, "Pappaw...where?" He told me they were all along the fence. I looked back, but I still didn't see them. Through the rest of the trip I kept wondering why there would be cat tails on a fence. Who would put them there and why weren't my grandparents upset about this? The way my grandfather pointed them out, he actually seemed happy about the cat tails. How could these people that I adored, be happy that there were cats walking around without tails...or worse, maybe they had been killed for their tails. And now, I was about to be spending a week alone with these depraved people. How could my parents let them take me?

Later that night, when we were having dinner at my grandparent's house, my grandmother mentioned that she wished we would have stopped and gotten some of the cat tails so that she could add them to her collection. I said in a stunned voice, "You have a collection?" My grandmother replied nonchalantly, "Yes, I can't believe you never noticed them, they're all over the house. Come on, I'll show you." Morbid curiosity getting the better of me...I got up from the table and followed my grandmother into the living room where she pointed to several dried flower arrangements. You can't imagine my relief in finding out that cattails were plants and my grandparents weren't...spawns of the devil.