Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
I have participated in NaNo since 2004, and I have been an ML (Municipal Liaison) since 2005. Being an ML is fun; it has all the glamour of writing 50,000 words in 30 days, plus the delight of organizing Kick-Off and TGIO (Thank God It's Over) parties and weekly Write-Ins. I schedule the Kick-Off party and Write-Ins within easy access of caffeine. The TGIO party has always been where adults have easy access to adult beverages if they so choose, as well as tasty snacks.
I use the time to write a first draft of a WIP (Work in Progress). It's a great way for me to work out the kinks in a story I've been mulling over for some time, to see if it has legs on its own or if it needs beefing up. The process is also illuminating, in that when you are writing so fast, the internal editor really doesn't stand a chance of being heard; that's not a bad thing. Without NaNo, I am prone to polishing the first few chapters so they shine brightly, while the following chapters suffer from the lack of TLC.
I have also been surprised by what comes out when you're just in the flow, or writing zone. Your subconscious takes over and sends some good stuff out and onto the page. There is also, as in any first draft, a lot of crap that will be left by the wayside once the revision process begins.
By November 30, my butt and my mind are happy to have another task to look forward to: our annual Sausage Party, where we make - from scratch and by hand - Italian sausage.
It's been said that sausage and law are two things you never want to see being made, and rightly so. How did I come to be so familiar with the former? That's a story for another day.
Friday, September 30, 2011
Friday, September 23, 2011
Sunday, September 11, 2011
I lived and worked in New Jersey and New York City until 1990, when I moved to Florida. On September 11, 2001, I was at work in Vero Beach when my sister called to see if I had heard that a plane hit one of the World Trade Center buildings. She worked from home and saw it on the television. Cable was available on the television in the break room of our building and I immediately went down to see what happened.
Friday, September 9, 2011
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
Monday, August 1, 2011
Friday, July 29, 2011
There is a joke that Florida is God’s waiting room, and because of all the retirees it is not hard to understand the joke. You may see a large, older model car driving down the road, and all you can see inside are knuckles on the steering wheel, and perhaps the top of a hat or a fuzzy white head. If the car is old enough, you may even see sparks flying from the seat belt trapped in the car door as it flaps against the road.
In New Jersey and New York City, aggressive driving is the norm, everyone knows that, and the passive driver is left on the side of the road. In Florida, due to the large amount of both seniors and tourists, aggressive driving can get you killed, but so can driving the speed limit and being on your own side of the road minding your own business.
One Saturday, driving on the west-bound lane of a divided highway in Vero Beach (State Road 60, by 10th Avenue), an older woman driving a tank turned into my lane as I neared the intersection. It was early enough that there was not much traffic, and I knew there was only one car beside me. He saw the car moving s-l-o-w-l-y into my lane, and moved to his right to give me room to move over and out of the path of the oncoming car. My coffee flying, I was swerving, honking and braking and I moved over to the lane on my right. The oblivious driver was fully turned and driving east bound in the west bound lane, and fortunate that the light at US 1 was in her favor. I didn’t hear a crash, and assumed she turned onto the next cross street.
I have had a similar experience at least two other times, and I always do the RCA dog impression: head cocked to the side while I puzzle out what is wrong with this picture. I have been lucky not to be involved in any head-on collisions, but there are many people in this area who have died. More than alcohol, driving while elderly is a problem here.
I understand that giving up one’s driving privileges due to age is equivalent to giving up one’s independence, but I have two good examples to go by. My father-in-law realized that he should not drive anymore when my husband suggested that he shouldn’t. My grandmother voluntarily gave up her car when she found out she had a heart problem; in her case, she said she would feel terrible if she caused an accident and someone was hurt.
I hope I recognize when it is my turn to turn in my keys, and let someone else do the driving. In the meantime, I keep my eyes peeled out for the errant driver.