Today I have decided to pay homage to the late, great Gene Roddenberry on what would have been his 92nd birthday by conducting an interview I believe he might have enjoyed. Now I ask you, what better way to pay tribute to one of the greatest contributors to the SciFi genre than to have a face-off of Starship Captains? Ladies and gentlemen I give you…
JAMES T. KIRK VS JEAN-LUC PICARD
Q: Which species makes a better First Officer, Human or Vulcan?
KIRK: A Vulcan makes the better officer because they use logic rather than emotion to guide their decisions.
PICARD: Generally speaking, Kirk’s right. On the other hand, I cannot speak highly enough of my very human first officer. Once he finally was able to remove that giant stick from his ass and relax a little bit, he turned out all right.
Q: What is the most important quality a Starship Captain must have?
KIRK: The most important quality a starship captain must have is the ability to love females of any species.
PICARD: Diplomacy, which basically is the art of telling someone to suck your cock with such tact and charm that they actually apply lipstick first regardless of gender or race, they sell tickets beforehand, and thank you when it’s over.
Q: The better date: Green Orion Slave woman, or hot human?
KIRK: Green Orion Slave women are the best! Man, there is nothing those girls will not do! Did you know that Green Orion Women have two vaginas? Little known fact!
PICARD: So, you fail twice? By the way, they have an ointment for that rash you’ve been complaining about. As for who makes the better date….have you *BEEN* to Risa? Jamaharon to the Bone, yo.
Q: The worst thing about dealing with Starfleet Command is ___ ?
KIRK: Starfleet Command are a bunch of pussies. If they let us annihilate the Klingons like we wanted to, the Romulans would think twice before attacking us again.
PICARD: I don’t know that I’d have phrased it quite that way, but I’m forced to agree with the good captain. Oh, fuck it: Starfleet Command is run by a bunch of spineless twat-waffles who can’t find their balls with both hands and a tricorder.
Q: Which is the better ride: The classic NCC-1701 or the NCC-1701D?
KIRK: The NCC-1701 of course! The 1701D is for pansies! Scotty would never be caught dead in the engine room of that bomb!
PICARD: The Constitution-class starships are beautiful vessels from a bygone era that I for one believe to be full of adventure, wonder, and excitement. To have been alive in those days, exploring the vast, unknown frontier? I envy those like James Kirk and the ships they commanded. That said, have you *seen* my fucking ship? It’s got phasers and photon torpedoes out the ass! It comes apart so it can kick your ass *twice* as much. And it’s huge! Don’t believe your girlfriend, Kirk, even if she is Orion: Size does matter.
Q: Marooned on a deserted planet, the three things I have to have are?
KIRK: A Green Orion Slave woman, Yeoman Janice Rand, and Cloud Dweller Droxine. Need I say more?
PICARD: A whole planet to myself? Wonderful! I’m overdue for a good vacation. I’ll take my Collected Shakespeare book, my tea, and my flute. On second thought…I’d like to meet this Droxine. And change my book selection to the Kama Sutra.
Q: I’d rather take on in a bar fight: a Cardassian or a Romulan?
KIRK: As easy as it is to beat the crap out of a Cardassian, I would much rather fight a Romulan. Romulans put up a much better fight. Can’t trust those Cardassians, they fight dirty as hell.
PICARD: He’s right about the Cardassians. Sneaky bastards, every single one of them. Romulans can fight well enough, but they’re always so worried about mussing their hair. Now, if you want a real fight, try taking on a Nausicaan. I’ve never lived that one down. And don’t even get me started on the Borg. *THOSE* guys were assholes.
Q: Which is more technically challenging, slingshotting a starship backward in time or dislocating it to an alternate universe?
KIRK: Neither actually. You want technically challenging? Try listening to Spock and Bones for five consecutive years, now that is a challenge!
PICARD: I must side with my esteemed colleague on this matter. Time travel or having your ship flung to the far side of the universe is nothing compared to having to deal with a snotty teenager who thinks he knows everything, and whom you can’t toss out the nearest airlock because you’re trying to get in his mother’s pants. Awkward.
Q: Which is more irritating, tribbles or Ferengi?
KIRK: The Ferengi are okay, they remind me of my Uncle Wilbur. Tribbles can really annoy you, and they multipy faster than Romulian rabbits. God I hate those furry little creatures! Do you know that they ate five years worth of grain? Try exploring the universe without your daily fiber! I was constipated for three years. Damn Tribbles!
PICARD: Can I reuse my snotty teenager answer here?
Q: You’re approached by Q, who is feeling generous and unmalicious – what gift of ability do you ask him for?
KIRK: Ah Q. I heard John Luc complain of the guy. A gift? well for John Luc, he can give him the Shatner 2000, the most futuristic hairpiece in the universe. Oh, and ability. I was sidetracked with the Green Orion Slave woman…she was a barrel of fun. I guess if I met this Q guy I would ask for the ability to give those Green Orion Slave women an orgasm. Did I mention that they had two vaginas? Try giving one of those women an orgasm. They don’t need one orgasm, they need two, one for each vagina.
PICARD: I require no hairpiece, young man. I’m quite comfortable with my appearance. Besides, chicks dig the smoothness. As for a gift, if I was forced to limit myself to just one thing, it would be the ability to go back and correct certain mistakes I’ve made during the course of my life. Barring that, I’d settle for just being able to go back and hide the evidence and bury the goddamned bodies. Oh, and I’d ask Q to give Kirk that ointment for his rash, which seems to be flaring up just now.
By the way, Kirk…get with me after the show. I can teach you what you need to know about those Orion women. Two words: “Vulcan Shocker.”
CLICK ON ALL THE PICS OF THE STARSHIP ENTERPRISE FOR AN ADDED BONUS FEATURE
*Good Afternoon, uh…is there such a thing as a time reference like “afternoon” in your reality?
Why wouldn’t there be? I’m just like you, missy. Minus the white beard. But don’t worry. It’s nothing a little electrolysis can’t help you with. (Bursts out laughing and slaps his knee). Man, I slay me! See what I did there?
I took the white beard reference and applied it to you! Since this is a print interview, people will think you have a white beard! Haha!
*Yes, I got it. Hilarious.
I know, right? I missed my calling, but relatively speaking stand-up comedy is a new thing. What would I have done before what you people call the 20th century? Wear a jester’s hat? No way. I have my pride. Plus, have you ever seen a comedian with such impressive biceps?
What? You want me to flex?
*No, thanks. Do time references like “afternoon” exist in your reality?
Oh, that. No offense, sweetie, but that’s dumb question. I mean I’m sitting here with you, aren’t I? In the afternoon. I would think the answer is obvious.
*It’s not afternoon everywhere.
Hey, don’t get all smart-ass and technical. Although I am everywhere I can’t be everywhere. I have to be somewhere, even if I am everywhere. So wherever I am, which doesn’t mean everywhere, is where I am. And when I am there, like I am here, I follow the clock like everyone else. By the way, do you know why clocks die?
Because their time is up! Haha! Get it? You see when people die other people say their time was up. So when you apply that to clocks it takes on a whole new double meaning!
*That begs for your thoughts on how we measure time.
You mean how I taught you to measure time. The truth is you people need structure and organization. Have you looked in your closets? So I gave it to you. However, to be fair, precision rocks my world. Without some sort of time structure your life would be chaotic, but mine would be completely different. I wouldn’t be a celebrity, for one. I’d only be that guy with the amazing bod and killer sense of humor. No one would call me Father Time which would be tragic since my given name is Vivien. Hey, wanna see my pecs?
*Since you’ve been around forever you must have witnessed some amazing moments in history. Can you tell us which event was your favorite?
Been around forever? Is that some sort of age crack?
*Of course not. All I’m saying is you are a man of experience.
That’s true. I am. I get a little sensitive when people start talking about age because it is saddled with all these pre-conceived notions. So what if I have a few trillion miles under my belt? I’m still sharper than a Ginsu knife. Not only that, I have quads to die for.
*I’m sure you do. Now back to your favorite moment in history. When was it?
Right now, baby. (winks)
*Which event did history get wrong?
It would be easier to answer which event history got right.
*Okay, which event did history get right?
What? Do I look like some sort of history expert? (Doubles over in laughter.) Sucker! You fell right into that one! Am I killing it or what? Dane Cook couldn’t touch me on his best day! Haha!
*Is there a special lady friend in your life?
Look at me. What do you think? This magic doesn’t just happen. It takes hard work and let me tell you, the ladies appreciate it. One peek at my lats will convince you.
*I’m flattered, but let’s keep this professional.
Oh I’ll keep it professional alright, sugar.
*I have no idea what that means. Do you have any inside information on the Mayans and their world-end predictions?
They were a fun-loving group, the Mayans. Did a bit too much peyote, which is never a good thing. I’ll tell you this much though. Even when the world ends, time will continue. Which means – cha-ching! – I have nothing to worry about.
*What is the one thing most people get wrong about you?
That I’m a “father”. I’m not. I challenge anyone to produce a paternity test that says otherwise. And if they do show me a test it better be multiple choice. Haha!
This bit of Father’s Day diversion brought to you by the mad genius of John at Trask Avenue. For more holiday fun read Iconic Interviews- some of the best bloggers around the ‘sphere coming together for a good cause and a lot of laughs. Pick up a copy today.
Pinch me because I must be dreaming. Today we have another amazing addition to the Blogger Compilation Project better known as F*CKED UP FAIRY TALES (I know, I know, the asterisk fools no one, but I’m trying to class my blog up, okay?)
Anyway, this little bit o’ tome comes from none other than our very own Beach Bunny Sandy Floyd, better known to Blogworld as Sandylikeabeach. Her take on the classic Thumbelina is as witty, clever and brilliant as this tiny writing powerhouse is herself. Please to enjoy, A TINY THUMBELINA TALE.
It was a dark and stormy night. Not really, but I always wanted to start the story of my life with that line. I have no idea if it was a dark and stormy night on the night of my birth or if I was even born at night. I was just a baby so I have no clear memories of the event. I’m not even sure I should start at the beginning. So let’s begin again.
I’m special. Well, as special as a person can be in a world populated by people, each one thinking he or she is special. Of course, if we’re all special, then special isn’t really special. It’s ordinary. It is the normal order of things. But I’m the Abby Normal of ordinary though my name isn’t Abby.
I wish it was Abby. Christ! I got stuck with an awful name. I swear to God, if there is one, that if I ever have children I will not stick them with some cutesy or super esoteric or just plain fucking weird name. And the lovely name that was bestowed on me? Thumbelina. What the fuck? Who names a kid Thumbelina? What the hell is a Thumbelina? I loathed my name. I shortened it to Tina. However, there was always that one teacher who insisted on calling every child by his or her proper name, no nicknames allowed. And of course, the first day of school each year my embarrassing name would be called out and I would have to acknowledge it and then say, “But I just go by Tina.” Then the more compassionate teachers would make a note on their rosters but the damage was done. The more obnoxious poets among my class liked to chant “Tiny Tina, Thumbelina” whenever I happened by.
Of course, even without the embarrassing weird name, I still would have been teased because of the tiny thing. Just as it’s not easy being green, it’s not easy being tiny and tiny is what I am though I’m not green and tiny, just tiny. Though now that I think about it, if green is the color of your species, then how hard can it be to be green? And if tiny is the size of your species, then being tiny wouldn’t be hard either, but tiny is not the size of my species so being tiny is not easy except that it is easy to be overlooked and easy to be treated like a child and easy to be thought of as younger than you really are which will be nice when I get older.
I am a very small person though not dwarf small, and unlike most dwarfs, I am exquisitely proportioned. But if other people didn’t feel compelled to state the obvious by telling me how small I am, I would rarely think about my lack of height unless I needed to get something off the top shelf at the grocery store. Of course, I’m sure one of the functions of the lowest shelf is to serve as a step for those of us who are vertically challenged to reach the stuff we need that is always on the top shelf. And I will admit to always being surprised when I catch a glimpse of myself in a mirror or some sort of reflective surface standing next to a normal sized person. Honest to God, again, if there is one, I look like a miniature person.
So despite all my name loathing during my formative years living on a farm with my foster mother after being abandoned as an infant with a note pleading for someone to take care of “our little Thumbelina” thus dooming me to a lifetime of name loathing and forever linking me to a shadowy group of people with weird names, my feelings about my name took a somewhat nuanced turn. Translation: I figured out how to cash in.
Upon my successful completion of high school, I knew college was a financial impossibility. I also knew that I did not want to spend the best years of my life waiting on people be it as a waitress or a retail worker. Cubicle life sounded no better. So having no moral compass, or any compass at all, I decided to put my decidedly good looks, flexibility and passion for my passion to good use. I became a tiny stripper and Thumbelina was my tiny stripper name even though that name is not tiny and doesn’t often, or possibly ever, come up in that internet what is your stripper name thing. But I was dancing and dancing made me happy. It also made me money.
Now some people might think stripping is demeaning and they have valid arguments and indeed, I would agree it is demeaning if the stripping is involuntary. However, if stripping is a personal choice, there is power in that choice. And pardon the obvious use of the word, but stripped of its moral questions, at its heart, it is art expressed in a very specific form of dance. The best strippers embrace this. I know I did, and I was one of the best. I even won the International Pole Dance Championship a couple of years ago. Though to be fair, Miss Australia probably would have won if she hadn’t had that embarrassingly awkward slide down the pole. A little lube goes a long way.
You might not think that a strip club would be the best place to meet the love of your life and before it happened to me, I would have agreed with you, but then it happened to me though the actual meeting thing took place in a coffee shop across the street from the club, but that first sighting was in the club. He was part of a bachelor party though not the part that was The Bachelor. He was just one of The Bachelor’s buddies helping The Bachelor celebrate one of his last nights of bachelorhood.
He didn’t look like the usual regulars, but boy, did he look good. He had this tall, dark and handsome bad boy with the scruffy beard thing going on even though he wasn’t particularly tall or dark, but he was definitely handsome. And he had that scruffy beard thing which looks great on a male model, though male might be redundant because no one ever thinks a scruffy beard would look good on a female model, but I’m not typically a fan of the scruffy facial hair decision. It’s not even a decision. It’s a mark of indecision. Make a choice, already. Grow a beard or shave, but damn, it looked good on him.
I could have looked at him all night. I didn’t, because I also wanted my usual haul of tips and it’s not just the dancing that does the trick, you have to make eye contact and smile at everyone to make the most tips. But I did glance his way every now and then, and each time, he was looking at me, but not in the way the usual strip club attendee does. When our eyes would meet, he smiled ever so slightly. It was warm and sweet and it felt like we were the only two people in the room.
After my shift that night, a couple of the other dancers and I headed to the coffee shop for our usual after work confab. We settled in a booth and that’s when I noticed him. He was at the counter and he was alone. I’ve never been a big fan of fate, but fate might be a fan of me, because as fate would have it, Amber’s phone rang.
“Ugh, that was the sitter,” she said as she returned her phone to her handbag. “I’ve got to get home.”
“Nothing serious, I hope.”
“No. Jason has a touch of a fever so I need to get home. See you later, TIna.”
“You going, too?” I asked Nina.
“Yeah, she’s my ride tonight. Good night, TIna.”
“Bye NIna, bye Amber. Hope Jason’s feeling better soon.”
The girls had no sooner walked out the door when the scruffy beard guy appeared at my table.
“Mind if I join you? I’ve never been a fan of eating alone.” His voice was like velvet – soft and smooth. A voice that could be on the radio, maybe a classic rock station or maybe even smooth jazz although much of what smooth jazz stations play isn’t even jazz, it’s more yesterday’s pop and soft rock.
“Um,” I hesitated because it’s usually not a good idea to get involved with customers, but he was good looking and he smelled good, or maybe that was the bacon cooking in the kitchen, but he looked and seemed to smell good enough to eat and I was hungry.
“It’s just a little food and conversation,” he said. And then he smiled.
“Yeah, company would be great.” I smiled back.
He slid into the booth across from me and smiled that smile. “I’m Cooper.”
I wasn’t sure if Cooper was his first name or last name, so I asked. My foster mom always told me I shouldn’t ask too many personal questions too soon, but how else do you find out stuff that you’d be wondering about and all that wondering would keep you from being able to concentrate on the conversation. And I was going to need all the help with concentration because I wasn’t really thinking about having a conversation with him, if you catch my drift.
“It’s my first name. It’s a little unusual but I like it.”
“It’s a great name. I’m..”
“Thumbelina. The tiny dancer.”
“I go by TIna.”
“How’d you come up with Thumbelina for a stage name?”
“It’s my real name. And you thought Cooper was unusual.”
He laughed and his laugh was even better than his smile. “Well, I think Thumbelina is a beautiful name. It rhymes with ballerina and you are an exquisitely beautiful dancer.”
He had me at ‘exquisitely,’ or maybe he had me at ‘mind if I join you.’ It doesn’t really matter when he had me, much like it doesn’t matter when the heart finds love, only that it does and mine did that night. We talked for hours or it seemed that way. At last, we noticed the night was easing into dawn and we made our way to the parking lot. He asked me where I was parked and I pointed to my car.
“I’m right next to you,” he said.
“That’s your bike? It’s gorgeous.” Though I didn’t add ‘just like you,’ but I was thinking it.
“Yeah, you like bikes?”
“I’ve never been on one but it looks like fun.”
“It’s just about the most fun you can have with your clothes on.”
“I always thought that about dancing, but of course, I don’t always keep my clothes on for that.”
He laughed. “Here’s my number. Call me and we’ll go for a ride. And you can keep your clothes on the whole time.”
I smiled at him and climbed in my car. “It was nice meeting you, Cooper.”
“See you soon, tiny dancer.”
A few days later I had my first bike ride. I climbed on the bike behind him and as I wrapped my arms around his waist I said, “I think this is going to be the best part of the ride.”
He laughed. “Not by a long shot. Hang on.”
And off we went. He was partially right. Holding on to him wasn’t the best part, but it wasn’t the best part by a long shot. It was a very close second. The ride was exhilarating. Sitting behind him, looking over his shoulder, the wind in my face was a great feeling. We spent the afternoon on country roads, stopping here and there to admire the scenery or grab a bite to eat.
It was just like one of those Hollywood movie montages the writers employ because they suck at writing dialogue. And it did feel like one of those too good to be true but wouldn’t it be lovely if it could happen to me Hollywood scenarios right up until it turned into a killer zombie movie but without the killer zombies, but Killer Bees instead. But not African killer bees, but the biker gang. I know it sounds like a silly name, but the backs of their jackets have this evil looking killer bee and they used a sinister typeface for the name, so it doesn’t just sound silly, it looks silly, too. But I kept my silly thoughts to myself.
We ran into the Killer Bees at Roady Toadies, a little dive bar on the outskirts of town. Of course, we didn’t know the bikes we saw outside meant there were Killer Bees inside. In fact, Cooper said he recognized one of the bikes as belonging to a friend of his. We walked inside and let our eyes adjust to the light after being in the bright sun. Cooper spotted his friend and we headed over to where he was sitting.
“Jack, this is Thumbelina. Thumbelina, this is my good friend, Jack Sparrow.”
“Like the Johnny Depp character?”
“No,” Jack said. “I had the name first but I like to think he got his character’s inspiration from me.”
Cooper laughed and said, “I think he got the inspiration from Keith Richards.”
I smiled at Jack. “Nice to meet you, Jack.”
“Likewise. Thumbelina, huh? That’s not a name you hear everyday.”
“No, it’s not,” I replied, except that I was hearing it more today then I usually do and right about then, a loud voice behind me bellowed my name again.
“Thumbelina! I’d recognize that ass anywhere even covered in jeans.”
I turned around and there was the biggest Killer Bee I had ever seen. Of course, it was the first Killer Bee I had ever seen so thinking it was the biggest one ever was a big mistake. Behind the loudmouth Killer Bee, were more Killer Bees and they were even bigger than Mr. Bigmouth which was how I was coming to think of him. Mr. Bigmouth didn’t look familiar and I had never seen men attired in Killer Bee attire in the Pussycats club. But he was looking at me, the way hungry men look at a grilled steak.
And before I could reply, Mr. Bigmouth looked around at his buddies and said, “Boys, this is your lucky day. We have a celebrity in our midst. This here itty bitty thing is Thumbelina, stripper extraordinaire!” Then he looked at me and said, “I watch your World Pole Dance routine on YouTube all the time.” He glanced at Cooper and added, “She won the championship a couple of years ago. You know that?”
“No, I didn’t, but I can’t say I’m surprised. She is quite extraordinary.”
If I hadn’t already fallen in love with Cooper, I would have right then especially since he didn’t know about how Miss Australia should have won except for that embarrassing slip or in her case, slide down the pole.
But Mr. Bigmouth wasn’t done. “Why don’t you dance for us Thumbelina? Just climb right up on the bar and show us what you got.”
“You can see me dance at Pussycats,” I replied in an even tone.
“I want to see you dance right now!”
Cooper stepped between us, “Leave the lady alone.”
“She ain’t no lady.”
And then Cooper slugged Mr. Bigmouth.
“I’m not a fan of double negatives either, but I usually refrain from hitting the illiterate,” I said to him.
“I would have slugged him even if he was grammatically correct. No one gets away with saying you’re not a lady.”
But before we could congratulate ourselves on just how clever our repartee was becoming, all hell broke loose. It was the three of us, okay two of us because I’m not much good in a fight and I’m really tiny, against all those Killer Bees. Fists were flying, glass was breaking and I was ducking. I could feel strong arms around me pulling me backwards and then everything went dark.
I wasn’t unconscious, just locked in a closet. I banged on the door, but I guess Cooper couldn’t hear me over all the noise of the fight and last I saw, he and Jack seemed to be on the losing end. After what seemed like an hour but was probably much shorter because everything seems to take longer when you’re locked inside a closet, I heard what sounded like a gunshot. My heart stopped, but not because I got shot but because I was afraid of who might have. I could hear voices but I couldn’t make out what was being said or who was talking. Then it got quiet again, so I started banging on the door and screaming to be let out.
The door opened and a rather mousey looking woman was standing there.
“It’s all right, dear. Toadie put you in there. He thought you’d be safer in there.” She smiled at me and there was kindness in her eyes.
“Toadie is a real person?” I couldn’t believe how many people had parents that made such bad choices when naming their kids.
The mousey woman laughed. “Oh, he’s real all right, but Toadie is a nick name he picked up when he was a roadie for Z Z Top back in the day. I’m Mrs. Fields, Toadie’s mother. I help out in the kitchen.”
I refrained from asking her for a chocolate chip cookie and instead asked about my friends.
“Well, they’re a little banged up, but no permanent damage. Come and see for yourself.”
She led me through the kitchen and into the bar. I spotted Toadie right away because he looked like a toad, kind of like how that senator looks like a turtle. Toadie was holding a shotgun but when he saw me, he smiled and said, “Sorry to stick you in the closet like that, but a bar fight is no place for such a pretty little lady.”
“No worries, Toadie. Thanks for looking out for me.” I was looking around for Cooper and Jack. “Where are my friends?”
“They’re in the john cleaning themselves up. Those Killer Bees did a number on them, but as badass as they think they are when you point a shotgun in their general direction and let it discharge, they run away like little girls.”
I laughed. Then I heard a noise behind me.
“She does have an incredible ass, Coop.”
I turned around and flew into Cooper’s arms. “Everything about her is incredible,” Cooper replied.
“I think I’m in love,” I sighed.
He smiled at me, “I know I am.”
Jack said his goodbyes and left the bar. Cooper looked at me, “Ready to ride off into the sunset to that happily ever after place?”
“I’ve always wanted to do that. Especially if that place has a bed big enough for two.”
He held my hand as we walked out of the bar. We climbed on his bike and he looked back at me.
“Too bad it’s midnight,” he said.
“Midnight will do.”
Every so often there comes a moment when we see ourselves through another person’s eyes. Determining whether that’s good or bad depends entirely on what we see. Most of my epiphanies are delivered in the form of my sister telling me my ass looks fat in my jeans, whether I ask for her opinion or not.
Commentary on my fat ass or bad breath I can handle, but what I wasn’t prepared for was the reality of personal feedback in the form of reviews for my novella, Reapers With Issues.
Before I begin I’d like to state that every reader who reviewed my work negatively did not condemn me personally for what I’d written, despite not particularly enjoying the book. I’ve read reviews of other books where the reviewer took the author to task, and I am happy to say I’ve been blessed with a classy group of readers who didn’t feel the need to blast me.
I guess what confounds me most is that I expected there to be more blow back for subject matter. Portraying Jesus as a closet homosexual and writing a scene where Genghis Khan violates a shi-tzu wasn’t going to win me an audience with the Pope, and I knew that going in. I also prepared myself for a critique of the quality of the writing itself, which as it turns out I didn’t receive much of. What I did get was essentially the same question, asked in so many words, of what kind of person could conceive of the Reapers idea at all. Again, good or bad depends entirely on what we see.
[enter the dreaded introspection process]
The first thing I did was try to answer the question of what kind of person I am. Despite an obscene amount of navel-gazing I am no closer to that answer now than I was when I began. My motivation to write Reapers With Issues was just as strong and the subject matter just as easy to conceptualize as Gods of Asphalt’s was, so identifying a specific default in thinking didn’t pan out. The truth is that I’ve got a hundred different stories buzzing around in my head; everything from harmless children’s stories to British comedies to even more Reapers sequels (oddly there’s nothing milling around in there that remotely smacks of Erotica, but that’s a post for another day after an hour on a couch).
So after an even more shameless bought of self-contemplation I began to ask myself a different question, “Why do any of us write what we write?”
Do we choose our genre or subject matter because of who we are, or because of what we make of the world around us? I imagine it’s no coincidence that Reapers With Issues was written during the darkest hours of a friend’s battle with cancer, or that Gods of Asphalt was written while stuck in bed, listening to my two teenaged sons bicker amongst themselves and argue with their father.
It is also not lost on me that I wrote Reapers With Issues from a third-person point-of-view, allowing me to observe at a distance the story of a Reaper whose best efforts to gather souls are thwarted by a Savior, or that the overall theme of Gods of Asphalt is how brothers cope when their mother isn’t around.
I suppose in the end what we choose to write comes from the harmony of both who we are and what we see. I’ve learned that whether my writing is received as harmony or dischord depends entirely on who’s doing the reading, and no amount of alteration of my “music” will accommodate everyone.
For the record, I’m fine with that. I am a Jazz fan, after all.
Oh it’s so good to be here, or anywhere for that matter. And thank you for celebrating Earth Day. It’s a small step towards saving my beautiful creation. So many people are so fucking oblivious to what is happening to this magnificent planet it boggles the mind, so thank you for the opportunity to shed a bit of light.
It’s been an unusually warm winter here in the United States. What do you attribute that to?
Well, I certainly had nothing to do with it despite what Zeus may have told you. He tried to tell me I was just having a primordial hot flash, but he’s almost as stupid about these things as most of the people on the planet. You people need to get your heads out of your collective asses and get a fucking clue. Do you think that over a century of burning coal and gas while at the same time cutting down my beautiful trees on a massive scale is having no effect on the atmosphere? If you don’t get your act together soon, the Earth is going to resemble Venus.
The world’s population is about to reach seven billion people. How has this affected Earth as you see it?
It’s making it damn hard for me to see the Earth. You know, almost all of the world’s problems can be attributed to one thing – too many people. When birth control was invented I thought you’d at least have the good sense to use it. But noooo. And now, people are a planetary problem. At least most of you seem to congregate in the same areas so there are still a few pristine places where you can experience this beautiful planet in all its glory.
You have quite the following among the New Age Hippie crowd. Which do you prefer as worshipers; the Hippies or the Greeks?
Ahhh, the Greeks – the wine, the debauchery, the bacchanalia – I love me a good bacchanalia. But then the Hippies, and not just the new age Hippies, but the old age ones, too, are all about peace and love and sex and getting high and hugging trees and the music. Yes, I think the music tips the scale in their favor.
I’ve done some research and discovered that you have over twenty children. Which one is your favorite?
I think it was way more than twenty but I lost count of the little bastards long ago. I know most mothers don’t refer to their offspring as little bastards but I never married any of their fathers, so they were all technically bastards. Now I’m not going to give you the standard mommy lie of ‘I don’t have a favorite, I love them all the same,’ because that is such a crock of shit. Of course, every mother has a favorite, it’s just that some mothers are better at hiding it than others. I simply adored Phoebe but Aergia was a huge disappointment.
Which God was the best in the sack?
Ahhh, I had some wild times with Uranus. There was nothing that guy wouldn’t do. And I mean NOTHING. It was SO hot! But he got a little mean in his old age so I got the kids to kill him. Pontus was so much fun, too. We would do some role playing, the pirate scenario was my favorite – always a hoot. Zeus had a huge ego, but sadly his manly parts weren’t so big.
How does it feel to be the original MILF?
Fucking fantastic! Though I prefer GILF or Goddess I’d Like to Fuck. There is fucking power in being so fuckable. Every woman deserves to feel like this. I think that’s what all those poser Wicca chicks are trying to achieve by invoking my name and dancing naked under the full moon.
What does Earth’s future hold for mankind?
I think you have that question backwards. It’s more a case of what does mankind’s future hold for the Earth. If you stay on your current path, the Earth is doomed. Earth is the only fucking planet you have. It is a glorious planet full of beauty and wonder. It can feed you and sustain you. All she asks in return is that you take care of her and nurture her. So get a fucking clue. Recycle, reuse, embrace sustainable farming, find viable sustainable energy, clean up the place. Tread lightly on the Earth and every now and then hug a tree.
CLICK THE RED BUTTON FOR PAST HOLIDAY ICON INTERVIEWS!!!
It’s time once again to celebrate our favorite Brit’s birthday, Megan from VeryNormal!
I’ll admit to having a heck of a time trying to figure out how to top last year’s send off, but this year I think I’ve got it covered. When I imagined what I’d likely be doing if I were in England right now, the answer became instantly clear. Why I’d be drinking, of course. So this year I’ve decided to create a drink specifically for our Megan, and name it accordingly. Ladies and Gentlemen I give you:
The Induced American
Named because you will likely be driving on the wrong side of the road after you knock one of these babies back. Here’s the recipe:
Ingredients (sorry they aren’t metric)
1 very thin sliver habanero pepper (because she is so spicy!)
2 slices fresh ginger root (because I like her with red hair best)
1 1/2 fluid ounces gin (because gin is British)
3/4 fluid ounce lime juice (because…well, because I like lime juice)
1/2 fluid ounce simple syrup (because she is so sweet!)
1 cup ice cubes (just because)
Muddle habanero pepper slice and 2 slices fresh ginger together in a cocktail shaker until pulverized, about 20 seconds. Add gin, lime juice, simple syrup, and ice. Cover and shake until well chilled. Strain with a fine mesh strainer into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a thin slice of ginger on a toothpick. Drink a toast to Megan and the Queen!
Happy Birthday, Megan! Have a drink for me!
TO WISH MEGAN A HAPPY BIRTHDAY VISIT:
FOR THE FULL COCKTAIL LIST VISIT:
HE: “Hello Loki. Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to speak with me and my readers.”
HE: “Uh, that’s it? ‘Hi?’”
LOKI: “Well, I’ve got a lot on my plate. You do realize what day this is, right? Nice fucking time management there, Chickie.”
HE: *looking at the calendar* “Well, since it’s April Fool’s Day I am going to assume you are joking.”
LOKI: “You would think so, wouldn’t you?”
HE: “I am guessing that April Fool’s Day is the busiest day of the year for you.”
LOKI: “No, that’d be Valentine’s Day. People say a lot of shit they don’t mean which makes for a lot of lies to distribute. Especially to the men folk.”
HE: “That’s just sad.”
LOKI: “I’ll tell you what’s sad, having a God like Odin as your step-father. Growing up I never did anything right.”
HE: “On that note, tell us about your childhood.”
LOKI: “What’s there to tell? I was always in trouble since my dickhead brother Thor is a cock-blocking douchebag. I got him back good by convincing Odin that his perfect son wasn’t worthy of living in Asgard so he kicked him out. Now I got the big bedroom.”
HE: “Holy crap! How did you manage that?”
LOKI: “Let’s just say I hid some of our Mother’s more “intimate apparel” in his sock drawer. You do the math.”
HE: “It seems pranking and lying started at an early age. Have any of your lies ever backfired on you?”
LOKI: *laughs maniacally* “No, but the truth sure has.”
HE: “Alright, you’ve GOT to elaborate on that.”
LOKI: “Well, my mouth gets me into trouble, you see. One Thanksgiving I got ripped on Jager and told my whole family off, including my two ex-wives. Every word I spoke was the truth, but it didn’t change the fact I had to transform into a fish and hide in a river to get away from them. Shoulda just stuck to lying.”
HE: “You are known world wide for your practical jokes and pranks. Which prank do you consider your masterpiece?”
LOKI: “Pranks change with the times. I had a blast fucking with the Druids by stacking a bunch of rocks for no reason and then there were those IT virgins who blew their wads worrying about Y2K. That one was a double bonus because it also got the Military’s panties in a bunch sweating random nuclear missile launches. But I’d have to say that the best has yet to come.”
HE: “Come on, give us a hint.”
LOKI: “Uh…I’ll just say to keep a watch out for December 21, 2012.”
HE: “Are all the pranks you do so grand or do you work on a more personal level with the public?”
LOKI: “At times I like to dabble in the everyday, like when one sock goes missing or when you ‘accidently’ hit Reply All on that email where you trash your boss. But remember, I still have to make a living. Right now I am the major shareholder in Pfizer, a pharmaceutical company that manufactures a little, blue pill.”
HE: “Are there any pranks you regret?”
LOKI: “Non-Alcoholic beer and Star Trek. Never thought anyone would take that shit seriously.”
HE: “What is the one thing you would like the world to know about Loki?”
LOKI: “That I am everywhere. I am a shape shifter, after all. That woman you meet in the bar that is too good to be true? She probably is. Just sayin’.”
Return April 7th for our exclusive interview with The Easter Bunny!!!
Determined to get an interview with this elusive holiday icon, I cornered him in his underground den and discovered something I’d not expected. I open today’s interview with the question that should have been asked ages ago:
HE: Say…you aren’t really a bunny, are you?
EB: Well Maybe it is time to come clean, if you wanna call me a Bunny go ahead but being a Bunny is not very useful when you deliver eggs is it! I am a Wallaby, you see, I can put all the eggs in my pouch and then I don’t have to go back and forth with my basket. I am all about convenience, you know what I mean.
HE: What made you decide to color and hide eggs?
EB: Shots. In my College years (I did not do much studying) my friends and I enjoyed colorful shots. So I now pick colors by having a shot, coloring an egg, different coloured shot, and different colored eggs. The hiding part is a long story about my friend and his … well it’s a long story.
HE: How do you feel about children eating chocolate likenesses of you?
EB: As we have just been through, I am not a Bunny, never will be because it will never be practical! So the Kiddywinks can eat as many chocolate bunnies as they please.
HE: How do you feel about sharing a holiday with Jesus?
EB: My mum once told me that story, I did not really understand it, and I mean it’s a bit gloomy for a Holiday all about the Kids, you know? Plus to me, chocolate crosses would be awful to make and color, all that blood and gore is for Halloween, not my holiday.
HE: Is there more than one Easter Bunny?
HE: Did you want to be an Easter Bunny when you were a kid…uh, a joey?
EB: No, as I have said I went to College, I just didn’t do well, this was my fall back, I wanted to be a Football Mascot but I do not think there is much call for a Wallaby, maybe if I was a Dolphin or A Ram! I mean have you ever heard of a Wallaby before today?! Do you even know what I look like?!
HE: What do you do when you aren’t hiding eggs?
EB: Nothing, I drink, I try and think of new ideas for next year but with 5 joeys at home and one on the way, thinking does not happen a lot.
Thank you, Easter Bun–Wallaby, for this timely and insightful interview. Return April 22nd as we celebrate Earth Day with none other that Gaia herself!
Hello Everyone, it’s me, Hellis, live and in person. Well, in spirit. I’ve been away from our little corner of this virtual Utopia we call Blogworld because I’ve been spending time with the new love of my life. Yes, people I am in love, and have decided to use Edward Hotspur’s ROMANTIC MONDAY post as an opportunity to introduce him to my world.
The latest object of my affection is a man like no other; he is fun-loving, free-spirited and young at heart. His childlike innocence attracted me immediately and before I knew it I was hooked. Today I’d like to introduce you to the man who captured my heart and is sure to steal yours. Without further ado I give you…Randy Pan.
Now, before some of you start sending emails to a certain tall, SciFi-loving Cowboy let me explain. Randy isn’t your ordinary, everyday Pan-fan. He’s living his dream everyday in a way that shames me as a writer. It took me a year to work up the testicular fortitude to query agents with my GOA novel while this guy was laying it all out there for the world to see. There was no fear of judgment or harassment on his part. He exposed his life and his soul in an act of bravery that humbles me. And while I will admit that it is taking every bit of self-control to not mock the living shit out of this guy; I have decided a better use of my time would be to honor him here.
So here’s to you, Randy Pan. May your tights not chafe, may your loafers be light, and may every jock who beat you down in high school scratch himself to death because of a raging, unchecked venereal disease.
Yes, you are correct, it is my birthday. I know this to be true because I follow Edward Hotspur’s blog and El Guapo’s blog and Ginger’s blog and Sandy’s blog (as well as kind email wishes from Trask Avenue, LeClown, and many a sweet comment from my good friends John E. and PMAO). All better blogs than mine, because quite honestly I completely forgot it was my birthday until I read them. Wait…more to the truth I forgot again that it was my birthday since my kick-arse British friend Megan wished me a Happy Birthday the night before (suck it, HR and Elias. She beat you to it).
It’s been through these good people that I’ve made even more friends today, and perhaps have even sold a book or two. That being said, I am not sure mere words can describe what all your birthday wishes mean to me. Without knowing me personally, you may not understand what a Dickensian upbringing I had, and how kind words and well wishes I never received as a child mean the world to me now. You have all become my family, and I am grateful for each and every one of you. Thank you for sharing my day.
Is there someone out there?
Can anybody read this?
It’s me, Hellis, texting from deep inside a crawlspace under a house somewhere in Ohio. I don’t know how long I’ve been here or even how I got here. All I know for sure is that Edward Hotspur is not who or what you think he is. He’s something else entirely; something…evil.
My battery is dying and I am growing weaker by the moment so I have decided to use my last blog post to tell the tale of what happened to me, hoping others might avoid the same cruel fate.
It all started a year ago when I asked Edward Hotspur what his attraction to rainbow pissing unicorns was. I mean, there were pics of them all over his blog, so surely they had meaning to him, right? Yeah, well, my curiosity was my first mistake.
He answered innocently enough, stating that this was merely an expression of his quirky sense of humor. I told him I found the pictures humorous as well, and thus began our friendship. It wasn’t long before we were trading emails of pics we’d find on the net, each one more absurd than the one that came before.
Then came that fateful day when EH would invite me to his home to see his collection of Rainbow Pissing Unicorn figurines. I knew Ohio was far away, but come on people, how could I resist? I mean, who has a collection of Rainbow Pissing Unicorns? Am I right?
Once in Ohio he showed me around his “lair” decorated from floor to ceiling with Rainbow Pissing Unicorn figurines, all hand-crafted from what he described as “bone” china. After viewing his collection he offered me tea which I drank willingly. Soon I felt light-headed and queasy, and the world began to spin in one giant, rainbow swirl. The next thing I knew I woke up here, in a crawlspace, with only a view of his lair through a tiny gap in the floorboards above my head.
Wait…I hear him coming. I can just make out him setting a giant pot of water to boil. Damn, he’s moved out of sight…I can still hear him though…singing to himself as he…he…sharpens something….
CLICK BELOW TO SAVE ME OR…
CLICK TO START FROM THE BEGINNING…
Words can not express the sincere appreciation that I have for Landon Swank and Harmony Swank for taking time out of their busy schedules to come surprise Libby. What a pleasure it was to meet you both.
On Saturday, December 29th Libby had the most amazing experience…Make-A-Wish granted her wish to meet Master Illusionist Landon Swank and his beautiful wif…e Harmony!
For just about two hours my baby girl focused on her new friends and the fun she was having learning some tricks and showing her talents too…fighting cancer was the furthest thing from her mind. It was great to see her smile and giggle and laugh. You both brought so much joy to Libby’s life and for that I will be forever grateful…bless you both.
Anyone who knows Libby knows that she loves card tricks, and anything magic so when she saw Landon perform his audition on the 2011 season of America’s Got Talent she instantly became a fan. Landon finished 5th place; higher than any magician has every placed in the show! She followed the entire season and was thrilled that he made it to the top five but very sad that he did not win.As noted in Landon’s bio, he is referred to by the magic industries insiders as, “Magic’s breath of fresh air”, Swank gives a performance that appeals to the masses. He offers a thrilling journey into the unknown, the unexpected and the unexplainable as it can only be described as The Magic of Landon Swank.
Thank you again “kids” for sharing in our day.
Faith, Trust and Pixie Dust…
FOLLOW LIBBY’S BRAVE JOURNEY AT www.wristsaroundtheworld.com
All across America families are gathered around their tables in celebration of Thanksgiving; a holiday that commemorates the first harvest of 1621 for the Pilgrims of Plymouth, Massachusetts. Here in New England, the birthplace of Thanksgiving, we honor our forebears by keeping with the tradition of serving turkey, an indigenous bird to this part of the country.
While many of us view turkey as festive holiday fare, there are some who consider our gesture of patronage murder. There is one who goes so far as to call it genocide. Today’s holiday interview is like no other that’s come before, because today we are conducting our interview in a secret hide-out free from the tyranny of New England’s native carnivores. Today we interview Pro-foul resistance leader, Tom Turkey.
Hello, Tom. Forgive me for sounding trite, but how are you doing?
Eat me – that’s how I’m doing. Oh, I’m doing really well. Gobble gobble and shit. I’ve been soaking in this hot tub all day – it smells great, sort of spicy or something. It’s making me hungry! GAH! Wait a minute…
Without revealing too much information, can you explain what is involved in engineering and maintaining an underground system of foul relocation?
Ah yes, the Undergrain Railroad. Well first, some wild turkeys are helping out with that by disguising some of us with camouflage and leaves. Those guys are poultry in motion. Secondly, we eat nothing but donuts and burgers and Cheetos to ensure that even if we’re caught, we’re too fatty to be palatable.
From what your lieutenants tell me you’ve been able to successfully move over one thousand turkeys out of New England to a Vegan commune somewhere in rural California. What are the logistics involved in such a massive migration, and were there any bumps along the way?
Besides these red things, you mean? HA HA! GOL! (Ed. note: gobble out loud) One word: trains. This country hates trains, so it’s easy to sneak on like a bunch of hobos and ride them all across the country. And when we can’t do trains, we ride bears. That’s right, bears! Grizzlies! In return for eating bugs. They hate bugs.
Have there ever been any close calls?
Yes there have – hunters. Those damned turkey calling things are like a siren song to some of us. Some of us are really fucking stupid, and when they hear one of those things go off, they go running out, and BLAM! Though this one time, one of our boys was able to get someone shot in the face. Hilarious!
And there was that one time when someone got a little smart for her own good, and read a map, and saw this country called… you know. She put the wrong two with the wrong two and got… well, eaten.
What would you like to see the Obama administration do in the form of policies that would make hiding out unnecessary?
Useless, Hellis. Useless. It’s already been tried. Over 200 years ago, we started a grassroots whisper campaign to get Benjamin Franklin to make the turkey the national bird. We would have been set FOREVER! But that idiot ran out in a rain storm and got shocked, and he was never the same. We couldn’t even get him on the ballot. Eventually, he went to France. Yeah, France. I know, right! Gobbledammed eagles swooped up and took the bird prize. They’re endangered, of course, but no one is eating them, are they.
More than just winning sovereignty for the Turkey population, you’ve been quoted as stating you’d like to see the Thanksgiving holiday abolished altogether. What in particular about Thanksgiving (other than turkey consumption) do you find distasteful?
Cranberry sauce. Terrible stuff. Oh, and those hand thingies, where human children trace their hands and pretend they’re turkeys? What the hell – those look nothing like us.
What’s your opinion on Turduken?
Well, I’ve stuffed a duck AND a chicken before, if you know what I’m saying, and I’ve seen ducks and chickens having some fun, but… yeah… this is just sick.
Finally, where do you see yourself in the future?
President of Mars, which will be renamed Turkopolis. It will also be renicknamed The Red Thingie Planet.
Once upon a time (because this a time-honored way of beginning fairy tales), there was a swan, and she was pregnant. She didn’t want to be, because she wasn’t in love with her swan boyfriend, and the egg made her fat and almost totally ruined her bitchin’ prom dress. So after she laid the egg in the bathroom of the Sheraton that her high school had rented, she scooped it up and snuck outside, making tracks for the hospital a couple blocks away.
She’d managed to fit the egg inside her clutch, so no one at the hospital knew what she carried up to the second floor, the neo-egg unit. She also managed to sneak into the nesting room and stick the egg in one of the cribs. Birds aren’t very good at security.
They’re also not very good at math, because none of the nurses noticed that where once there was one egg, now there were two. Luckily for them, the mother was a duck, which meant that she was stupid.
The mother and father duck went home the next day with their two new additions, and the mother duck sat on the eggs until they hatched. The hatching day was a big deal in the duck household. There was cake, and soda, and balloons, and cousins and uncles. When the eggs cracked open, everyone gathered around the nest to watch. The duck, the real duck, emerged from his egg first.
“Aww, he’s so cute,” said some distant aunt. No one really knew who she was related to. She smelled like moth balls, though.
Next was the swan.
“Holy shit,” said the distant aunt, “He’s fucking ugly!” And even though no one was sure if she was supposed to be there, or if she’d wandered in off the street, everyone agreed with her. That second duckling was fugly. Seriously, have you ever seen a baby swan? Bow-wow City.
The swan grew up thinking he was a duck, and he was constantly tormented. At school, he was pushed into lockers. His lunch money was stolen. His head was dunked in every toilet in the school. Ducks made gagging noises when he walked by. No duck chick would date him.
At home, his parents ignored him and doted on his duck brother. This brother was the duck version of David Beckham. When he entered a room, angels sang. Little old ladies helped him cross the street. Even blind ducks knew how good-looking he was.
In a situation like this, it can go two ways: the ugly duckling (even though we all know he’s a swan, let’s stick with this for the time being, hmm?) can rise above his tormentors and graduate and go to college, where things might not necessarily improve, but maybe he’ll turn out to be a whiz with computers and get wicked rich, or he can go on a shooting spree at his school and make the papers.
It went the third way: the ugly duckling decided to cut off his brother’s face, wear it, and take over his identity.
Did I mention that ducks were stupid? Well, swans are fuckin’ crazy. Like Mexican cartel crazy.
One day, the ugly duckling stole a scalpel from his science class. That night, he slipped some sleeping pills into his brother’s milk and waited until sleepy times. Then he cut off his brother’s face. Bill and all. He spent the rest of the night cleaning up the blood and figuring out a good way to attach it to his own vile mug. There wasn’t one. He ended up stapling it on. Then he dressed in his brother’s clothes and ate breakfast looking like Duck Leatherface and his parents had no clue. Ducks are so stupid.
Fortunately, most of his teachers were geese. Geese are very smart. They let him go to his first period class, then called him to the principal’s office, where the police were waiting. The cops were also geese.
His lawyer was a goose, too, and once he got a look at the duckling’s real face, he knew he was dealing with a swan. He also knew that all he needed to do was file a bunch of legal papers and get the trial delayed a few months. Because, you see, teenage swans are butt-ugly, but young adult swans are like David Beckham times a thousand.
And thusly, once the trial finally started, the judge and jury and all the court people saw this gorgeous swan waddle into the courtroom. The judge (a duck) was confused. He wanted to know where the filthy psychopath was.
The lawyer, not missing a beat, said that the psycho duckling had escaped, and this poor beautiful swan had been imprisoned in his place. Injustice! cried the jury (also ducks). So they let the swan go, and a manhunt (duckhunt?) was launched for the psycho duckling. They never found him, of course. But a lot of unattractive ducks suffered some vigilante justice.
And the swan, meanwhile, started a new life, but because he was a swan, and therefore mentally unstable, it wasn’t too long before he strapped a few homemade bombs to his torso and waddled into his old high school. He blew himself sky-high and died a virgin.
The date was October 25, 1993. At the time I was watching television, indulging in fistful after fistful of candy corn (yes, I actually like those). I was nearly three months into my first pregnancy so the reality of dressing my swollen belly up for Halloween and partying the night away was out of the question. Well, it was for me anyway.
Enter Mikhail Vlakfeld, my future ex-husband, heading toward the door dressed as- you guessed it, a Vampire. With all the wisdom of an eighteen year old only four months into marriage, he opted to leave me home to go party with his friends.
Relegated to a night of sulking over my Uterine Bastille, I began flipping through channels until I stumbled upon a Vincent Price movie marathon. It was in that moment that I uttered the phrase that would come to haunt me for the next nineteen years:
“My God, isn’t that guy dead yet?”
Seems like a harmless enough phrase, right? Jump to the next morning and me opening the front door to find my future ex-husband passed out face down on the front step, drooling onto a newspaper with a headline that read:
Vincent Price- dead at 82 years old.
That’s right. Apparently at the exact moment I uttered the above phrase, the great Vincent Price keeled over dead. You better believe my family never lets me forget this happened. I wish they would because let me tell you, Vincent Price is NOT the guy you want to kill with the power of an ill-spoken phrase. I expect the afterlife will not be a pleasant place for me.
For those of you who may not know, the great Edward Hotspur hosts a weekly blog-wide post-off known as ROMANTIC MONDAY. As someone who isn’t much of a romantic, I wasn’t sure I’d have anything remarkable to post on this topic. But something about the Halloween season inspired me to write the following tale of love and devotion gone wrong. For my first Romantic Monday offering I give you:
ODE TO EDWARD HOTSPUR
How I wish I had the courage to kill you, my darling. Oh, to have the strength to give you what you ask! Alas, my beloved, I am weak. You cannot imagine how it pained me to remove your feet. Surely you understand the sacrifices we must make for our love!
It all started so beautifully, did it not, E.H.? That glorious day when at long last you noticed me! I hardly believed it myself. Oh how you teased me, renaming me “Hellis” and coordinating our blog posts. How did you know the pleasure I would receive, seeing your words intertwined with mine? So why, oh why did it have to end?
Did my novelty wear off after only a year? Did you think I wouldn’t notice you had moved on to another? Did you think I wouldn’t recognize your words on another woman’s blog?
I recognized you. I recognized you because you belong to me.
I do not blame you for straying, my darling. You are just a man, after all, easily swayed by blog stats and sparklines. I forgive you your frailties. But I see now that I have to protect you and our love from the seductive, literary succubi who covet you for themselves.
Please do not cry, my sweet. You shall not miss your hands for long!
Just as you gave yourself to me, I shall become you, E.H. I will sacrifice my own identity and assume yours as a testament to our devotion to one another. I will destroy these usurpers of our love with your own beautiful, words. Oh how it will pain me to mingle my words with theirs. But love is pain my darling, as you well know.
FOR MORE ROMANTIC INTERLUDES VISIT:
Readers, today I have a better-late-than-never interview for you, and of course nature weighed in on this one. Interestingly, I had an interview set up with none other than Christopher Columbus that coincided with Columbus Day, but Hurricane Sandy had a voice in this. Mr. Columbus, welcome!
C.C.: Caio! I mean, hello!
H.E.: There is great debate about what your real motivations were for risking lives to discover the New World. Can you comment on what you were really thinking back there in Spain?
C.C.: I wassa thinking that Isabella was a pretty nice lady. What can I do? My blood, she is Italian.
H.E.: Were there any dangerous points along the way that made you consider turning back?
C.C.: Some of the sailors, they…weren’t lookin’ so good. Some of them even say I looka nice for a man. I think to myself, “Eh, Christoph…you need to find these men some women quick.” I say a little prayer and then boom- we finda land. I’mma one lucky sonafabitch.
H.E.: Rumor has it that you were in fact lost on your first trip, yet you are hailed as a navigational genius. Any comment on that apparent disparity of opinion?
C.C.: Hey…that’s some a pretty bigga words coming from someone who needs a the GPS to find her way out of the shower.
H.E.: You probably also have heard some of the racier rumors about shipboard life involving grog, sodomy and the lash. For a curious world, Chris, sheep or no sheep? Or was this a don’t ask/don’t tell situation?
C.C.: Hey…what’s a matta you? That’s not a polite. I will say this- they don’ta call them a “Seamen” for nothing.
H.E.: Obviously a lot has changed. On that note, America back then, or America now – which do you like better?
C.C.: That’s a easy – America today! They have a holiday justa for me!
H.E.: Okay, so if you had to do it all over again, what would you choose to do differently?
C.C.: Turna left.
H.E.: To wrap this up, Chris, your thoughts on the holiday in your honor?
C.C.: It’s lika my mama used to say, “All good things come from Italy.”
For those of you who don’t know, I am obsessed with Halloween on a level that can only be described as unhealthy. So as part of the Hellis Hellish Halloween Holiday – Four-H – I’ll be bringing you an exclusive weekly mini-series of Halloween-centric posts with various Halloween icons. We’ll start our interviews with a highly reclusive star of the annual All Hallows Eve festivities, the Werewolf.
H.E.: Good morning, Mr. Wolf.
Wolf: Good morning, thanks for tracking me down.
H.E.: No problem! I… uh, have a list of questions, but I have to ask, are those tattoos real, and you have to tell me what kind of cologne you’re wearing.
Wolf: (grins) Oh, of course they are, and they’re not any kind of tribal you’ve ever seen before. There are more, of course. As for the cologne, I’m sorry but I’m not wearing anything but me. I’m not offensive, am I?
H.E.: God no… I mean, of course not. You’re kind of… catnip-ish, in a good way… a very good way.
Wolf: It’s funny, you know. I get that a lot.
H.E.: (dabbing perspiration) I see… so on to the meat… I mean body… er, main part of the interview… What would you say is the best part of Halloween these days?
Wolf: Oh, I’d say the pumpkins. I mean, sure there are your basic Jack o’ Lanterns, but I tell you the new special kits these days… wow.
H.E.: I’m sure nobody ever suspected your artistic side. People are probably surprised to know you’re a bit reclusive. Will you share why?
Wolf: Other than the obvious? People don’t understand me. I’m either this (gestures at himself), or I’m a rampaging beast, completely terrorizing normal folks, taking what I want, and leaving devastation behind.
H.E.: Guh… uhhhm, right. I completely undre… understand. So you would say you have trouble keeping stable relationships going?
Wolf: Absolutely, and don’t get me started about vegetarians. The last one I dated… let’s say it turned out badly.
H.E.: So is there an up-side to this Werewolf situation?
Wolf: Honestly, yes. For one, no male-pattern baldness. That’s a plus these days. Also, my stamina is completely off the scale…
H.E.: (stabs herself in the leg with her pen) Mmph.
Wolf: Are you all right, Miss Ellis?
H.E.: Yes… yes. All right, moving on. How do you feel about the way popular culture has portrayed you and those like you?
Wolf: Do you have enough tape for this? Oh, it’s digital. First thing is, I’m not necessarily a wolf, H.E. I’m a shapeshifter. Also, when you say, “those like you,” that’s another misconception. I’m one of a kind.
H.E.: (mumbles) Oh, yes, you are…
H.E.: Guh… nothing… please go on.
Wolf: Right, well, ‘werewolf’ is a German term, where actually I’ve been more aligned to the Norse concept of things. I can shift shape into what I like when I like. I’d also like to take the opportunity to say that I’m not at war with vampires, and the whole silver bullet thing? It’s a myth.
H.E.: So you’re saying that the moon thing, and the wanton rampaging and killing…
Wolf: Is part of the myth. I’ve hunted herd animals on farms. I’ve done ‘wanton rampaging’ but to my recollection, nobody ever literally died when I did that.
H.E.: (tossing question list over her shoulder) Okay, just growl for me.
People, I am disillusioned. No, I am more than that- I am traumatized. Because my innocent little British Sweetie Pie just wrote the raunchiest retelling of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves that I’ve ever read. Hang on to your caps chaps, because I bring you Snow White and the Seven Strippers??
“I am leaving tonight!” thought Snow as she packed her bags cautiously. All her step mother cared about was her father’s money and she got it when he passed away. Snow knew the woman was jealous but banning her from going to university, this was a whole new low! Any boy Snow brought home her step mother convinced her they didn’t like her and Snow had never had a proper relationship. Leaving was the only way she could live her life how she wanted.
As Snow stormed past the beautiful ruby Red Mercedes Mclaren SLR her father had bought her for her seventeenth birthday, she backtracked for a moment. It was hard to leave when you had everything but she couldn’t stay for luxuries. Snow tapped the car and forced herself to leave. Marching down the street Snow bumped into a street advertiser who offered her a leaflet. It read ‘New VIP Bar Opening Tonight, All Drinks £1” she thought for a moment. Her step-mother had never let her go clubbing. Snow was going to do it; she was going to get smashed!!
Snow walked up to the new bar and walked through the doors; she stormed straight to the bar and asked the bartender for a double vodka and cola because that is what her step-mother ordered when she wanted to get drunk. She took the drink and gulped it down in one. She smiled; she had never felt this free before.
A friend from University was sitting across the bar, Snow couldn’t remember her name but she ordered another drink, downed it and walked over to her friend “WANT TO DANCE,” she shouted but the girl couldn’t hear her, then Snow remembered her name was Zoe, Snow walked closer to her and said “Zoe, do you wanna dance?” Zoe smiled and said “Yes actually, I have been stood up and could do with a friend,” Snow led her to the dance floor and they started dancing. They were shortly joined by a very good looking man who passed them a leaflet “I would love you girls to join us later,” he said before winking and walked over to another crowd of girls. The man had jet black hair and beautiful blue eyes; he had stubble on his face and walked around the club with a cheeky smile. The leaflet said “TIME OF YOUR LIFE, a club with a difference,” Zoe looked at Snow and pointed at the opening times “It doesn’t open till eleven,” Snow looked at her diamond incrusted watch and it was only nine but she was determined to have a good time “Let’s get plenty to drink before then,” she said pulling Zoe back towards the bar. At 11:30, Snow and Zoe stumbled to ‘time of your life’. Snow looked at the man at the booth at the door and said “How much do you want?” the man laughed and said “The shows has already started but if you still wanna go in its £15 each,” Snow passed the man £100 and said “Keep the change,” Zoe giggle as they walked into the club barely holding each other up. They were both shocked when they walked into a revamped theatre; they took a seat at the back near the bar and waited for the next part of the show to start.
A tall, gorgeous lady walked onto the stage and said “I hope you ladies enjoyed the first act but now onto the second, you all know this guy, give it up for Friendly!!” The women around them screamed in anticipation. A woman next to Snow had a huge stack of five pound notes on the table in front of her so Snow presumed she knew what was going on. Suddenly a beautiful man’s voice sang “You know I know how, to make them stop and share as I zone out,” he slowly danced onto the stage in a suit and took his jacket off “The club can’t even handle me right now,” as he stopped singing the women went wild. Snow had never seen anything like this but she was captured by what she was seeing.
“Watch you, watching me I go all out,” he sang as he sat on the edge of the stage and the women closest to him stroked his muscly chest and abs. “The club can’t even handle me right now,” he finished singing and the music started. He started dancing but really dancing, he was amazing. His shagging blond hair was dancing with him and his muscle rippled as he delivered every move with passion and precision. He slid across the stage and jumped onto a girls lap, he was dancing on her and she was gridding on him. He jumped onto the table and ripped his pants off. Snows jaw dropped as he used his hat to cover his dignity. As he left the stage the women came back on and said “Did everyone enjoy that?” Snow was too shocked too scream and she needed another drink. As she sat back in her seat, the most beautiful man she had ever seen stepped onto the stage in a camouflage trousers and a white vest top. The white vest top didn’t leave much to the imagination as all of his muscles protruded through the material. He man danced down the ales of the theatre, pulling girls to their feet and dancing with them. Snow bit her lip as he dance towards her, he was her perfection. He had dark hair and dark eyes. As he danced back towards the stage, women sighed and pleaded for him to dance with them.
Seven acts and nine shot later, Snow was on cloud nine. As the club emptied Snow found a nice comfortable bit of concrete and fell asleep.
“We should really wake her up,” said Flirty as he stared at the beautiful girl asleep on the road. Frisky nodded at him and kicked her. Flirty shot him an angry look but Frisky simply shrugged back. The girl looked around and realised she was asleep on the road outside a strip club. Her hair was stuck up in the air and her clothes were on backwards (Meaning at some point last night she must have taken them off). Flirty looked her up and down, he didn’t know what to say. “Are you alright?” Frisky said as the girl squinted at them both. She looked at him but the only thing she could remember from the night before was running away from home. She was confused but asked “Do you have a place for me to stay?” Flirty and Frisky were taken back, Frisky shook his head “Erm no, no girls allowed,” but Flirty had a different idea. “How long do you want to stay?” Flirty said before Frisky could stop him. The girl fluttered her eyelashes and said “Only till I can find myself a place,” Flirty smiled and added “What is your name?” the girl blushed “Snow White,” she whispered in embarrassment, Flirty smiled “I am Flirty and this is Frisky,” The girl looked at the both before nodding. Frisky pointed down the street and said “Come on then.”
Snow slowly realised she was going home with too strapping young men. She started staring at them and taking in their feathers. Flirty was tall, dark and handsome but Frisky had long brown hair and rough stubble on his face. When they arrived at the block of flats, Snow asked “Which one is yours?” the men turned around and smiled, Frisky answered “All of them, all seven flats,”
“For all seven men,” Flirty added with a big grin on his face. Snow suddenly felt warn inside, seven absolutely gorgeous men in one building, she was glad she ran away from home.
Snow placed the one bag she had with her on the table and sat on the sofa. The flats looked awful from the outside, dull and run down but on the inside they were luxurious. Snow wondered why the men lived here and how they got the money for such expensive things but she didn’t want to be rude and ask. Flirty walked in the room with another man with Blond hair and striking green eyes, he was very muscly and very attractive. He walked over to Snow and said “I am Friendly, please to meet you,” Snow just nodded but she had a feeling she had seen him before. He blushed and sat on the other sofa, Flirty looked at Snow and said “You will have to come to work with us, Fancy doesn’t want you here alone but I think I have a job you can do,” He winked which also seemed familiar to Snow. Flirty got his car keys and encourage the others to show Snow to the car. Snow was in the car with Flirty, Frisky and Friendly but she was told that Funny, Fancy, Funky and Fizzy were in the other car.
When they reached the place they had called work, Snow noticed it was a dance studio. They walked into a huge studio and Snow sighed at her reflection straight away. Her usually neat hair was all over the pace, she combed it with her fingers back into a Black bob it usually was and felt instantly better. As soon as Friendly started dancing, Snows memories from the night before came flooding back “OMG YOU’RE MALE STRIPPERS!” she screamed as the seven men stared at her. The men just laughed “I am guessing you can now remember last night then,” Funny said as he finished laughing “No,” Snow answered and she was mortified. Flirty looked at her and said “You stayed after the show and was drinking with us, you were telling us what you would do to us behind closed doors, and you were being pretty…”
“Erotic,” added Frisky as Flirty struggle to finish his sentence. Snow was shocked; she was not usually like this at all. Flirty looked at her “Our front lady quit last night, I though you could fill in for her,” he whispered as reality suddenly dawned over Snow and she turned to leave. Fancy, one of the wiser of the young men then stepped up and said “Look Snow, you came here looking for something else, you ran away from home and you have nothing to go back too, it’s do or die for you so why don’t you just give it a shot?” Fancy’s word rung in Snows ears. Snow had gone from being a pampered princess to being a widow’s slave, a life which she only ran away from last night and was willing to go back already. She needed to prove to herself that she didn’t need that life, that she could earn money for herself, she turned around and nodded at fancy
“Yes, you’re right,” she said and the men smiled “Welcome to the team,” Fancy stated before handing her over to Funky who was going to teach her the ropes. Funky had short curly ginger hair and lovely blue eyes, he seemed to be shy compared to the other but the man could dance, all the men could dance!
The first thing Funky did was pull out a costume, it was a sexy ringmistress costume and it was lovely. The jacket was blue, the waistcoat was yellow, and it had a white shirt, it also came with black skin tight shorts. When snow tried it on and she felt absolutely amazing. Flirty wolf whistled from the back of the studio as Snow studied herself in the mirror. Funky then went through how the night flows. Funky sat down next to Snow as she watched the men rehears “We open Thursday, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, 11:00 till 2 but the show is only 11:15 till 12:45, Ten minutes per set, opening, all seven of our acts and a closing set, go it,” Funky said and Snow nodded, Funky watched as Snow seemed mesmerised by the dancing the men were doing. He looked at her and said “Can you dance Snow?” she shook her head and said “My dad took me out of dance classes when I was younger and pushed me into maths,”
“Did you still want to dance?” Snow turned to look at Funky but didn’t reply. Funky dropped it and continued teaching Snow “So your job is to introduce us and keep the crowd pumped so they give us more tips,” she nodded and Funky went to join the others rehearsing.
Flirty ran over to Snow, pulled her up and said “We are finished now and better go get ready for tonight,” Flirty pulled her really close and Snow could fell his muscles on her body, she didn’t want to admit how aroused Flirty made her feel but he was perfect. Flirty turned and walk away as if he knew she would follow, as if he knew he had her screaming for him on the inside.
Friendly walked out to the car with Snow and she wanted to know more about the man who had fascinated her so much the night before. “You are an amazing dancer,” She said trying to start up a conversation with him “Thank you,” He said before blushing. Snow was amazed by his modesty; she didn’t think he knew how good he was. “As dancers go, I think you are one of the best I have ever seen,” Friendly shook his head “The women don’t come to see me dance, they come to watch me take my clothes off and then they push for me to take them home to fulfil their fantasies,” Friendly said while getting in the car. This filled Snows head with more questions “Do any off you have girlfriends?” the three men in the car shook their heads “Who you want to share your boyfriend with hundreds of other women?” said Frisky with a smiled on his face. Flirty shook his head “Frisky likes to take his fans home and give them what they want, Friendly and I stopped doing that a long time ago,”
“Why did you stop?” Snow asked.
“Because women come home with us, get everything they want, a night of passion and pleasure then in the morning they go back to reality, a family, a husband and a perfect life, they just use us to live on the edge for one night,” Friendly said with heavy heart. “They want more, I give them more, its how I want to live and it keeps me full,” Frisky said, he said those words in a like he was a hunter and women with dull and repetitive sex lives were the pray, he finished his sentence with “I aim to please,” and chuckled all the way back to the flats. The men spent the rest of the afternoon getting costumes ready and packing the car but Flirty took time out too come see Snow who was having a nap ready to stay up most of the night.
Flirty gently knocked on the door and walked into the room topless. His muscles rippled as he moved and this made something inside of Snow sing. Flirty sat on the bed next to Snow and she sat up straight so she was fact to face with him, his gorgeous brown eyes gazed into hers as he said “We are setting off soon, I thought you might want to get ready,” Snow smiled at him but what she really wanted to do was just jump on him. Snow was very caged at home, she had only ever kissed a boy when she was younger and she hadn’t really thought about it since but these men turned her on, they really set her going and she had to think twice about kiss Flirty. Flirty react over Snow to open a draw on the night table. He pulled put a wallet and slowly brushed his hand against Snows legs as he put the wallet in his pocket, if she was going to do it, she was going to have to do it now. Snow lent in really close to Flirty’s lips and bit hers, to do it or not but Flirty took things into his own hands and kissed her. She was shocked at first but as he licked her lips with his tongue she started to relax. Wearing only one of Flirty’s old shirts Snow was already half naked and Flirty took advantage of that rubbing his hands all over her body, teasing and pleasing her until she wanted to beg for him to do it, to just fuck her but he had other ideas. He slowly got up and started walking away “What are you doing?” said Snow disappointing and pining for more “If I just gave it to you, the excitement is lost; I have to keep up the tempo,” he whispered before walking out.
Snow got dress into jeans and a t-shirt ready for the car ride to the Club, when she walked out onto the street she realised an ex-boyfriend shouting her. She walked up to him and asked “What are you doing here?”
“Your step mother wants you to come home,” He replied as he opened the car door. Snow shook her head and walked away “You don’t belong here Snow,” the Ex shouted “You are from a land of millionaires and socialites, this is a few pounds and drop outs,”
“Everyone can change,” Snow shouted back as the Ex got in the car and slammed his door.
Snow washed her face in the toilets before the show; she was really nervous and didn’t want to go out onto the stage. She saw a shadow behind her and she turned around. It was only Flirty, he picked her up and pinned her against the wall, Snow could feel something hard pressing against her legs and it was making her excited. Flirty kissed her and Snow kissed him back, slipping her tongue in and out of his month gently. Flirty was struggling to contain himself and pressed her harder against the wall. He placed his hand on her thigh and slowly stroked her up to the top of her legs, just before he used his fingers to stroke her insides Flirty backed off. He placed her back on the floor and gently kissed her on the forehead “See you after the show Snow,” he said before giving her a cheeky smile and leaving her desperate for him.
Snow leapt onto the stage and shouted to the rowdy audience “Are you ready ladies?” they screams as they knew what was coming. Snow was dazed by all the women, there were hundred and they were all waning one things, these seven men to take their clothes off for them. As the seven men ran onto the stage in their cowboy uniforms, the women screamed even louder and threw money onto the stage. Women stood up from out their seats just to get a touch of the men or an acknowledging wink. All the women wanted to be danced with as the men picked women out the crowd. This was what they paid for. All night the women were throwing money at the seven men and all night Snow had her eyes on her prize, she wanted Flirty and she wanted him bad.
When they finally got back to the flats, some of the men had invited women to come back with them and hurried into their bedrooms. Friend said goodnight and walked into his room alone. Once Flirty and Snow were alone he picked her up and walked into the bedroom with her in his arms. When he got to the bedroom he threw her down on the bed and took his shirt off, his beautiful body was something he used to turn ladies on and it worked at charm with Snow. She lay back on the bed and waited for him to crawl on top of her. He hovered over her and pulled her top off, and then he kissed all the way up to her lips before rest his body on top of hers. Snow smiled with delight as he kissed and nibbled on her neck and pushed his hips against hers. He pressed the hard bulge in his pants against her jeans which she just wanted to rip off. Somehow Flirty seemed to know what Snow wanted and he pulled down her jeans in hast while she unbuckled his belt and threw it to the ground allowing for his jeans to just slide off. At this point Snow was ready to beg for it, which gave her an Idea. She stood him up and got on her knees, now this she had never done before but she was ready to give it a try, she downed his boxers and exposed the only part of Flirty that the women at the club didn’t see. She took it in her hand and slowly paced it into her mouth. When she looked up, Flirty had the biggest grin on his face. This was what made men happy. The fact that snow was completely naked and giving a man a blow job that she had only met two days ago didn’t embarrass her, it excited her! She could defiantly get used to this new life. As Flirty started to find it hard to hold onto his load he pulled her up and kissed her quickly, he pushed her onto the bed and stroked her with his fingers. She didn’t know what to do, she wanted to scream and just before she did Flirty filled her mouth with his tongue and gave her something to concentrate on other than the pleasure she was feeling. As she felt the pleasure growing inside her Flirty placed himself inside her, just a little bit at first, he trusted slowly and gently but when he felt Snows muscles relax he got faster and harder. Snow felt the pleasure bubble over inside and she let out a little whimper. Flirty smiled before dropping onto the bed next to her. Snow rolled over and hugged him, they fell to sleep and Snow was happy for once.
The next morning Snow woke up but the men were gone. Flirty had left her a note on his mirror “Make yourself at home, we will be back after rehearsal” Snow sat in the living area and turned on the TV. Suddenly there was a buzz from the door. Snow walked up to the intercom and asked who it was “Snow it’s me, we need to talk,” The sound of her step-mothers voice tore through Snow like a hurricane but she knew she had to let her in, so she did.
Snows step mother sat across from her and said “I will make us some coffee,” Snow just let her do it because she knew she wasn’t going to go home with her. Snow took a sip from the drink her step mother had given her and immediately felt funny, before she knew it Snow blacked out.
When the men got home they found the door open and they ran inside. They found Snow on the floor and instantly took her to the hospital. The doctor told the Seven Strippers that Snow White had been drugged and she might never wake up. The other men left Flirty to watch over her while they piece together what had happened at the flats. While Snow was unconscious, the seven men pieced together what had happened and her step-mother was arrested. After 3 months the doctors discussed how unethical it was too keep Snow White on life support and decided to turn it off. Flirty walked in the room and said goodbye to Snow. “I hope you can hear me Snow because I want you to wake up, I was to talk to you again, I want to watch you dance and I want to make your life better, please just wake up,” Flirty kissed her on the lips and walked to excite the room. Unexpectedly with a cough, Snow uttered the words “I am awake,” Flirty spun around filled with joy. The doctors ran into the room followed by the other six strippers. The doctors looked at each other “This has never happened before,” they mumbled between themselves.
When Snow was finally allowed home, she couldn’t feel anymore content with going home with the seven strippers.
Snow and Flirty lived happily for around two weeks before a new act joined the group called Prince Charming and Snow fell madly in love with him. It turns out that Prince Charming was happy to share and Snow got the best of both worlds.
She was a very happy girl!!
Even though I’ve been taking a break from SPaM in order to write the REAPERS WITH ISSUES series, I had to come back today in order to introduce to you all someone truly special. For those of you out there who may not know, there is a rockin’ chick among us who is somewhat new to blogworld. I’ll let her About Me page speak for itself:
Essa Alroc is an Orlando, Florida based freelance writer who published works include “The Blurb About Freshness on the Back of Your Deodorant” and “Understanding Your Utah 529 Plan”. When she’s not at work, fantasizing about setting her cubicle on fire, she is working on her first full length novel. It is not about deodorant or financial aid plans.
1. Your writing style is edgy, to say the least. What influences do you attribute to forming your particular writing style?
I was born and raised on heavy sarcasm and using humor in the place of emotions. My life’s motto is if your going to bitch about something, at least make it funny. That way people will actually listen. When I was growing up, I was an overweight kid with bad teeth, who wore my brothers hand me downs. If it wasn’t for my incredible ability to hurt someone’s feelings, I would have made one hell of a target. Luckily for me, the weight came off, the teeth got fixed with braces, but I never lost the ability to come up with some seriously scathing commentary. I also still wear my brothers hand me downs.
2. You live and write in Florida. How does living in the south influence what you write?
Florida both fascinates and horrifies me. I have a theory that something to do with the heat makes the people here crazy and violent. What I like about this state is that things that would be ridiculous anywhere else seem normal in Florida. I draw on a lot of my experiences here for both my fiction and non fiction work and I never seem to run out of things I write about it. What I dislike about Florida is all the rapes and murders…and lack of Jack in the Boxes. I miss their curly fries.
3. Your page MAKE ME YOUR BITCH speaks to your ability to write for hire. How does writing for someone else’s project differ from writing your own, and what can someone expect in the way of services?
My first love is humor writing, but in today’s market, it’s not a viable career option. Luckily, thanks to the plethora of jobs I’ve had, I’m able to write about a large range of subjects and still make them readable (and g-rated). My goal when I’m writing someone’s page is to get them SEO hits and at the same time, give value to the reader who was searching for their page in the first place. When someone types a query into a search engine, they’re not looking to get sold something. They’re looking for an answer to their question. My goal is to answer that question and still make my clients page come out on top. At the same time, I have to keep it free of my personal opinion and four letter words. Sometimes it’s easy, like when I’m writing an article about medical marijuana. Sometimes, it’s impossible, like when I’m trying to come up with 10 things I like about Mitt Romney. Number 1 was his hair.
4. Tell us about STRANGELY SOBER.
Strangely Sober was a novel born of frustration. Frankly, I was tired of reading about unworldly heroines who need the hero to show them how things are done. I’m not like that, and I don’t think most women are like that. Having a vagina doesn’t make me a bumbling, clumsy, insecure mess who can’t handle life on her own. I’ve lived a full life and I think a lot of people have. I created my protagonist, Angelica Salvatori, AKA Sal, because of that. She drinks too much. She smokes too much. She lives everyday like zombie apocalypse is right around the corner. She adapts and re adjusts as necessary. Personally, I think that’s what life is all about.
5. Tell us about ASYMMETRIC ANGELS.
I wrote Asymmetric because I didn’t feel ready to let go of Sal. There were some loose ends to tie up from the first novel and I didn’t think her story was over yet. Asymmetric has been a challenge to write, because it’s got some strong religions undertones in it, despite the fact that I am not remotely religious. It’s a sequel to my first novel and its where my heroine, Sal, tries to create a shaky opinion on faith and at the same time, tries to adapt to a world that is constantly changing for her. Asymmetric is a novel about getting to know yourself. It also has explosions, a high body count and a recurring Gary Busey hallucination. Can’t disappoint my readers while I’m trying to be artsy.
6. How does blogging effect writing, if at all?
Blogging is a release for me. Its entertainment writing in its highest form. I don’t use my webpage in my portfolio, because it’s my hobby. I don’t allow marketing on it, and even my own marketing blurb for my business is kind of a joke. I don’t want my readers distracted by ads. I want them to laugh. I don’t censor myself and I don’t want to do that for a sponsor. All my blogs are born out of an everyday experience that can be made ridiculous using the right words. The world is a ridiculous place, and the ability to laugh at that ridiculousness makes us powerful. I laugh at the Westborough Baptist Church, the economic crisis and child prostitution because I understand the power of humor. I go by the lessons I’ve learned from George Carlin and Richard Prior. ANY topic can be made funny when given the right delivery. That approach makes me fearless in my writing.
7. What have you learned most from writing your novel?
Be prepared for change. When I originally wrote ‘Strangely’, it was called ‘Unforgettable’ and it was written about a schoolteacher with eidetic memory. Two days before I released it, NBC released a show called “Unforgettable”, about a cop with eidetic memory. Instead of releasing it anyway, or trashing the whole series, I adapted it, changed it, until it was a completely different novel. Now, I’m glad that happened, because ‘Strangely” is about 10000 times better than what it was originally.
8. What advice would you give other would-be novelists?
Put your novel away for 6 weeks after you finish it and then read it again. It’s like being a first time reader. Maybe you realize your novel is, in fact, genius. Maybe you realize its crap. Maybe NBC puts out yet another shitty crime drama show and you have to start all over. Either way, you’ll be glad you did it.
9. Who are your favorite authors?
I love Jacqueline Susann, because she made trash literary genius. Read “Valley of the Dolls” closely and you realize that Neely O’Hara is Scarlett O’Hara. I love Piers Anthony because he makes sci-fi/fantasy a commentary on politics that hasn’t been met since Orwell’s “1984”. Finally, I love Tim Dorsey because he writes about Florida with tongue in cheek humor that delivers both admiration and disdain for this wild and crazy state. If Serge Storms were real, I would totally be stalking him.
10. Where do you see your next project taking you?
Well, the final book in the bar series, Gio’s Gift, is already breaking my heart because I’m murdering off a character I’ve grown very attached too. After I’ve uncurled myself from my sobbing emo ball, I’ll be working on something I’m calling the Dark/Light series, which I’m hoping comes to par with some of Anthony’s more political novels. It will be my first foray into science fiction and is loosely based on Nietzsche assertion that God is dead. Personally, I don’t think God is dead. I think he’s a sandwich artist at Subway…at least, he will be in my book. I hope eventually to make enough from my humor and fiction projects to focus on them full time. I think as long as I keep typing away and putting my best literary foot forward, it will happen.
Or I’ll wind up a sandwich artist at Subway.
GET A FREE DIGITAL COPY OF STRANGELY SOBER TODAY ONLY BY CLICKING BELOW:
I’d like to take a moment to step outside of the humor box and use my blog post today as an opportunity to spread awareness for a cause I truly believe in.
There comes a time in the lives of all bloggers when we find a need to step back and reflect on our journey through the virtual utopia that is Blogworld. Some of us have come here to broaden our horizons and to find inspiration within the photo or travel blogs that pepper the Freshly Pressed page. Many of us find comfort and community amongst the animal lover or mommy blogs of WordPress. Still others use their blog to extract humor from the banality of the workday life and to share their plight with the blog world around them.
But once in a great while there comes a blogger who stands out among the rest- a blogger who effortlessly straddles the line between tragedy and comedy. A blogger who bucks convention with his often times controversial opinions on the validity of religion or the sanctity of marriage or the awesomeness of Star Trek. A blogger who challenges the status quo, strives to enlighten both men and women alike, and who boldly laughs in the face of clowns.
It is this singular blogger who I believe can deliver us all into an era of change and lead us down a path of righteousness and light. That is why I, Hellis of Bloggerland, am asking its citizens for their support and their vote for EDWARD HOTSPUR as champion of the BLOGGER IDOL contest.
“Amongst the weeds of the world, a flower grows…”
CAST YOUR VOTE FOR EDWARD HOTSPUR HERE:
At first you’re thinking of writing a novel and you’re all…
But then you have an idea!
And you go…
But then you hit page 50 and you’re all….
And then you hit page 75 and you’re all…
But you power through!!
And then you’re finished!!! You have finished a novel!!
Only then find out you have to start querying agents.
So you write your query letter…
You obsess over it…
And then you send it out to agents and you’re all…
Then a couple of days go by and you’re all…
But then you hear from your first agent!! And you’re all…
And it’s a rejection. But it’s just your first one so you’re all…
Then you get a few more and it’s more like…
But then! An agent calls! And they love your work! They want to represent you! And inside you’re like…
But you don’t want your agent to think you’re crazy so instead you’re like…
And you love your agent! When you say “yes” you want to…
But instead you go…
And then it’s time to submit to publishers. You are back on submission, and you’re like…
Then the editors start saying….
And your inbox starts looking like…
But then your phone says your agent is calling. And you want to be like…
But instead it’s more like…
And it’s an offer! You have an offer! And you feel like…
And then you go celebrate with your friends and they’re all…
And on the car ride home you’re still like…
But it’s time for revisions. And you pretend you know what you’re doing…
And it’s back to…
But then you’re done! You’re really really done! Only your book doesn’t come out for another year. And so you’re like…
You get your cover and you’re all…
But then publication day approaches! And your reviews start coming out and it kind of feels like…
But some of them are good! And you’re like…
And then your book is out there! People are reading your book!
And it feels pretty good!
And there’s only one thing to do. Start the whole thing over again.
Attention all you shiny folks from the ‘Verse! Today is the tenth anniversary of the first episode of the uber series that hardly was, FIREFLY. You don’t have to be a Joss Whedon fan to appreciate his dystopian western turned cult-classic.
For anyone who’s read my novella REAPERS WITH ISSUES and enjoyed the antics of a horseman named War, you may want to pay close attention to a character named Jayne Cobb.
Here’s a big thank you to a young uber fan-friend of mine for her awesome video below.