Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Here Comes ....CRAZY!

I know what you were thinking... you thought I was going to say "Honey Boo Boo." Well, I an so very happy to say that I have never, ever, EVER watched that show. The beauty pageant scene from "Little Miss Sunshine" was more than enough "pageant" for my lifetime, thank you very much. Although, truth in advertising, I LOVED that movie and love the soundtrack by Devotchka even more.

But I digress. It seems that the area around Temple Square has become the Vortex of Weirdness. I mean, even though it was kinda weird before. But this past weekend there have been a plethora of odd and quirky events, beginning with a guy on Friday night trying to cram some kind of food down my co-worker's throat. And not just my horse, but other horses working that night. Believe me, we carry whips on the carriages to use on the humans. I advised random horse treater that MY horse did not take candy from strangers.

On Saturday, a guy tried to play "Chicken" with me. So my question to this guy is, "Why in holy hell would you decide come straight at a 2000 pound animal with four legs and the mentality of a toddler, dragging a four wheeled vehicle containing five people, one of which has a good sense of humor but a very short temper?" Oh, and did I mention that he was WALKING?

By the way, he flinched first, so Tom and I won. But I'll give Tom most of the credit, because he has nerves of steel. Except when he's scared of stuff, like his own urine.

We don't work on Sundays, so we actually had a weirdness break. Although Wease and I went to India Fest at the Hari Krishna Temple. Which was a lot of fun. Plus there was food. And jewelry. And I love, love, love Indian costume jewelry. So we had a great time getting our Bollywood on.
(* None of the women in that photo are either me or Wease.)

Then Monday came, which means another day at work, and a crazy woman having an "episode" while on a carriage ride, tried first to leave her kid on North Temple. And when that didn't fly with the carriage driver, she walked away at South Gate, leaving her child in the custody of, you guessed it, a carriage driver.

You know, maybe I will start watching that Boo Boo show. It can't possibly be any wackier than my life, right?

Visit this great book review blog to read Ten Things My Readers Would Be Surprised to Know About Me. And make sure you sign up for a chance to win one of three copies if my novel, The Carriage Trade.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Classy Is As Classy Does...

My most frequent drinking partner, also known as "Mom", and I often use these very fancy glasses to guzzle  daintily imbibe our Two-Buck Chuck   expensive imported French wine. We like them because while gaudy  visually striking they are also  cheap plastic  break resistant and when you are as clumsy  animated as we are, sometimes shit gets broken  minor disasters occur.

To counteract the trashy dollar store ambiance  kitsch of the glasses we often drink from them with our pinkie fingers extended. As everyone knows, pinkie extension transforms even the most low brow activity into something worthy of bourgeois individuals with fancy pedigrees and buttloads of money.

Once in a while I give my pinkie a well deserved rest and just grab the container with my meaty paw and chug. Because there are times when chugging in in order.

What this all brings me to is this: I received a really nice review of my book, The Carriage Trade, from someone who was not a friend, co-worker, or my drinking partner  Mom. And it contained a warning about language. Specifically about the "F" word being used. A lot. And it's true, the characters in my novel do use the "F" word a lot. Why? Because carriage drivers are like that. In the barn, when we go to draft horse pulls, or eating breakfast at one in the morning, we can often be found using the "F" word. We have also indulged ourselves with conversation about horse pooping habits, undescended testicles, and Tampons for bitches. Dog bitches, not human females with bad dispositions. They already have Tampons.

Anyway, I guess my point is this: people use the "F" word. It's been in use for a couple of hundred years now. So who am I to mess with tradition?

Yes, The Carriage Trade has some naughty language in it. But the heroine suffers from a does of brain damage, and that's how she deals with... everything.

If you would like to read something I wrote without any naughty bits, Splitting The Difference is available for Kindle  FREE on Amazon  Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, 9/17/12-9/20/12. Don't have a Kindle? Download the Kindle app for free and read books on your computer or smart phone.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Time Behind The Windshield

Last week I returned from an eleven day trip. I don't usually go anywhere for eleven days, much less drag our camper behind the vehicle. And I need to make sure I pay better attention next time when Mr. Slave Driver tells me how many miles we will be driving. As much as I hate to fly, I will admit that there are times it is a necessary evil. I just wish they'd let you get drunk before embarking onto the plane. They used to allow it, and it made flying a much more pleasurable experience for me.

The purpose of our trip was to watch PFC The Kid graduate from Basic Combat Training. Our first night on the road we stopped outside of Loveland, Colorado and camped at Boyd State Park, which was nice enough. We were joined at our campsite by my nephew Kyle and my nephdog Elvis,

 both of whom reside in the area. Also, I finally got to meet in real life "Conscripted Cherry", a member of a group who are fans of the writing duo  Bob Mayer and Jennifer Crusie. She was kind enough to drive an hour and a half one way to visit. Plus she brought me a bottle of wine, so she has my allegiance and undying friendship for life.

The next day we drove to Wichita, Kansas. Now, I lived in Missouri for eight years, and I've been to Kansas a few times. It doesn't change much. We stayed in an "RV Park" that was situated on a major road across from train tracks. In the interest of saving lives, the engineers felt compelled to blow the train horn each and every time they passed by, apparently to keep us from wandering zombie like onto the tracks. So that night we slept forty-five minutes at a time. Thanks, Atchinson, Topeka and the Santa Fe!

We stopped and visited the Oklahoma City National Memorial, which was very powerful. If you're even passing by the area I highly suggest a visit. All those empty chairs... 

I saw my first dead armadillo; I was very excited. My people laughed at me, but I don't care. Nothing quite stirs the blood like a toes up armadillo on the side of an Oklahoma highway. Then it was on to our temporary final destination, Fort Sill. We camped on the base and were lulled to sleep nightly by the sound of artillery fire. I do not recommend this campsite if you suffer from PTSD.

Graduation day came, and we collected our soldier and headed out for San Antonio, Texas.

After we left we were treated to a gorgeous sunset in Texas. 

We spent an afternoon hanging around The Alamo, 

and of course I had to chat with a couple of the San Antonio carriage drivers. They really seem to be big on the Cinderella Carriages out there. And grey percherons. 

Then we had to deposit PFC The Kid at her new temporary home, Fort Sam Houston. The next day it was off to Roswell, New Mexico. I know what you're thinking... Rosewell, that's where John Chisholm, originator of the Chisholm Trail was from.

Oh, yeah, they also have that other thing going on...

We drove to Albuquerque specifically to stop at Trader Joes. Why? Because I'm a wine-o and I like Two-Buck Chuck (Charles Shaw) wines which are actually three bucks in New Mexico. Now, I'm not saying that we brought back seven cases of wine, because transporting liquor over the Utah state line is illegal. But if it wasn't illegal, I might do that. 

We got to see a lot of this while we were driving:

After spending the night in Dolores, Colorado in some guy's back yard advertised as an RV Park, we finally returned to Utah. Back home to our dogs and sitting down in a house that wasn't moving. It was a very long trip, but we were able to spend some time with our soldier, and that made the whole thing worth it. 

I'm blogging over at Wise Words today. Stop by. And if you go to the Virtual Book Tour Cafe you can sign up to win a free copy of my novel The Carriage Trade.