Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving....and for those of you who may not be American, I hope you had a wonderful November 25.

I had a great gluttonous weekend and will be catching up on some of the mess for the next few days or so.

However, I did want to stop and say Thanks to all of you who stop by every now and then and read my little space of the internet, especially since my posting has been so spotty for the past few months.  Trust me when I say that your readership and comments are much appreciated and frequently make my day.

So, most sincerely, Thank you.

Monday, November 22, 2010

An Open Letter to Jane Austen

Dear Ms. Austen,

Over the past two weeks I have been listening to all your major novels while at work.  I must admit that your books are really a guilty pleasure of mine.  I generally don't love things that might be categorized under "chick lit" but your books have always been an exception.  I have always loved your heroines.  They are frequently some combination of smart, resourceful, and plucky.  There is the witty Elizabeth Bennet, the introspective Anne Elliot, and Elinor Dashwood who is so cool tempered and diplomatic she could probably run a country.  Even Catherine Moreland, who is, for all intent and purpose, quite obnoxious and immature, is at least well-read and imaginative.  So seriously, what happened with Fanny Price?  She is feeble, not particularly educated or curious, and is the first to jump on any social grenade that comes her way and play the part of the martyr.  Now, I can respect the fact that perhaps you were trying to impress upon the reader the importance of being kind and moral through the actions of Fanny but I challenge that all your other characters accomplished the same.....and had grown pair.  So I would like to suggest a few possible rewrites that might help Fanny in her fictitious journey.

1.  After visiting her poor family Fanny's eyes are opened to the condescending nature of her two aunts.  As a result, her self worth builds proportionally to her indignation, and as a form of subversive vengeance she returns to Mansfield Park where she begins to raid the servants closet, stop fixing her hair and start drinking excessively (all in the name of irony).  All the while reading and educating herself (primarily in the counter culture movements of the day) that way she could outsmart her aunts while looking and acting socially beneath them.  This movement would catch on.  Later, these same people will go a little too far, stop showering, get whiny, and become too self-involved.  This group will henceforth be known as hipsters.

2.  A mystery package shows up for Fanny one day.  She opens it. The package contains a copy of Betty Friedan's "The Feminine Mystique."  She learns about the "problem with no name".  Fanny suddenly starts speaking up.  She develops enough self esteem to not only notice that Henry Crawford has the hots for her but that he is primarily attracted to her because she is so submissive and "well-behaved".  In response, she proceeds to give Mr. Crawford a tongue lashing the likes of England has never seen.  She then moves to London to pursue a career as a motivational speaker.

3.  One day while out riding her horse she runs into a gentleman making soap in a field.  Turns out, his name is Tyler Durden.  Hijinks ensues.  Mansfield Park ends up as a pile or rubble and Edmund Bertram leads a battered, but finally clear headed, Fanny to the family apothecary.

Please consider the previous three items as I believe they would add a new, and much needed, dimension to one, Fanny Price.

Thank you for your time.

Most Sincerely,
Erika

Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday, Monday.

Tomorrow begins another Monday.  And I am feeling a little more prepared than last week at this time.  I just hope I don't have a repeat of last Monday.

Last week on Monday I had gotten up with the intention of getting to work earlier than usual.  I woke right up to my alarm was out of bed and on schedule.  As I was making my way around our kitchen eating breakfast and putting together a lunch I noticed that a small packet of Neosporin that had been left on the counter after I had sliced a finger the night prior, was now on the floor.  Upon further inspection I found that there were tiny puncture marks, just the size of cat teeth, which left the remaining contents of the packet oozing through the holes.  I checked the ingredients....primarily petroleum jelly.  But there is a warning saying if it is ingested one should call poison control.  So I get a little panicky and wake up my husband and track down the number for the emergency vet clinic to see what they can tell us.  All in all, it took us about 20 minutes to figure out, thanks to the interwebs, that our kitten was totally fine.

So now I am behind schedule, rushing around the house to finish up and make my way out the door.  I hop in my car.  Open the garage door.  Start pulling out of the garage and...thunk!  I couldn't see anything outside my rear window so my initial thought was that I hit a dog or a child.  That's not good.  I rush out of the car to find that my husband had left our grill in the driveway the night before and now it had toppled and spilled spent charcoal all over our drive way.  As I was already frazzled from all the other drama my brain just stopped working.  I could not get from point A to point B.  Do I throw the grill in the bushes and simply drive over all the charcoal ultimately making a bigger mess?  Or do I wake up my husband and make him help me clean this all up now?  My brain kept flipping between to options while my body was frantically pacing back and forth between the front door and the mess in our driveway.  The entire time I am muttering to myself and gesticulating like George Costanza.

I finally make it to work only to realize that there is about a 1/2" split in the seam of my skirt right at my hip.  Hmmm.  So I think, you know, I am a desk monkey now.  It's not like I am running laps around a store like I used to.  Perhaps I can just discreetly cover the split with my arm whenever I end up standing up.  It takes me about 30 minutes to realize that this plan is going to end up as an epic failure as every time I shift in my chair the split gets a little bigger.  If left to it's own devices my skirt was going to have a major wardrobe malfunction by the end of the day.  Now, I am not sure if you are all aware of this but I am NOT the type of girl to keep any sort of sewing kit on my person.  In fact, my ability to quite feebly mend any piece of clothing is just shy of miraculous.  So it should be noted that I had no needle, no thread, and no safety pin.  After searching my wallet for anything I might be able to McGuyver into repairing my skirt I realized what I had to do.  I grabbed my stapler and as surreptitiously made my way into the lobby, past security and into the bathroom.  Me, my ripped skirt and stapler.  Why yes, I AM the epitome of class.

That was last Monday morning.....here's hopin' tomorrow goes a little smoother.