A Bumper Car
8 oz. Coca Cola
2 oz. Rum (or more)
8 oz. Ice
1 Cherry popsicle (after removing sticks)
Blend well. Then drink while eating carnival food (corn dogs, chili fries or kettle corn, for instance), and then you'll wake up feeling like you've been hit by a bumper car.
Sometimes my brain works about as smoothly as bumper cars driven by drunks. It's not pretty. Here, I'll give you a glimpse of my writing process today. Believe me, you’ll feel much better about yourself once you have some idea of what’s occurring in my head.
I sit myself down to write and my mind conjures a million ideas. Again, imagine those whisky-breathed drunkards slamming bumper cars into each other. Or imagine every concert-goer at, say, Woodstock simultaneously raising hands and shouting, “Write about the time you spilled drinks on Ted Danson” or “Hey, no! Write about taking the wrong plane!” or “Forget those! Write about living in Greece with your pet octopus and tortoise!” or “No, you’ve gotta write about the car-thief-roommate you had put in jail!” “What about all the jobs you screwed up? You were a drink-spilling waitress, an overly enthusiastic aerobics instructor, and an over-the-top-gum-chewing-boa-flinging hooker on ‘Cagney and Lacey’.” Then, just as I’m trying to listen to these frenetic thoughts, my husband walks in and says to me, after seeing me stare at the computer screen, “Why don’t you write about that credit card guy from this morning?”
Here’s what happened this morning: First, you should know, I hate credit cards. I'm not one of those numb-skulls that waves around the card squealing "Free money!! Charge! it" But we needed a few things for our business... Anyway, I think of the little beasty-bills as landmines, landmines that will blow up if I pay one hour later than they are due, landmines that can change instantly from 0% to double digit interest rates if late. Well, last week, I made sure (as I always do) to pay one of the bills early to avoid any sort of explosions. Yesterday (Tuesday) I realized I paid the wrong one and left the one that was due before it sitting in my bill folder. That meant the one I thought I paid early didn't get paid, but it was due this past Monday!!!! so I hyperventilated. Then I called the credit card company, paid the late-bill by phone and was told I could call Wednesday (today) to reinstate my 0% interest rate, since I had proof I simply paid the wrong bill.
Cut to the phone call this morning:
Me: Hi, yes, a nice man I spoke to yesterday told me that I could reinstate my interest rate because I have proof I simply paid the wrong bill, when I met to pay the one that was due.
Creepy Credit Card Man: Well, not exactly.
And then in a weird twist -something similar to going to the doctor expecting to have a splinter removed and then ending up having a gynecological exam - the Creepy Credit Card Man began asking invasive questions about my finances: my income, my home equity, all about our business, whether I’ve made funeral plans… (Well, not quite, but almost)... Whatever numbers I gave him were just some that I threw out to get to the reason I called. Since he had the power to raise my rate, I thought I would be abnormally polite. Normally, I would’ve told him this information was none of his business. But I grasped that he was a little man in an uncomfortable suit with a tie strangling his neck. He needed to feel important. So I took pity and tossed him some phony numbers.
The Creepy Credit Card Man (after hearing my supposed financials) took a deep breath and blew into the phone as if he were really disappointed with me. Yes! He huffed. He huffed as I used to when my daughter would come into the house covered in mud after I just mopped.
Me: (laughing) Uh… are you huffing on my account? You really don’t have to worry…
The CCC Man ignored me and (after feeling quite satisfied of his own self-importance) reinstated my interest rate.
Sorry, folks, that’s about as exciting as it got for me today. Sad, I know.
I really do have better stories - full-written stories that need editing; partially written stories that need finishing, and then there’s the traffic jam of stories clogging the 101 and 405 junctions in my skull. It’s just a matter of kicking off the drunks, pointing the cars forward and going full speed ahead.