Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Love at First Sight?

Love at first sight? Is it real? Well, both Red and I think so. Here’s why:

Kathy: There’s no question in my mind that love at first sight is real. It happened to me. 

Red: Me, too. Mac knocked me off my feet the minute he opened his mouth. 

Kathy: Well…yeah. That’s because the same thing happened to me. 

Red: What do you mean?

Kathy: Come on, Red. You do know that you’re a character, right? I mean, at least half of what happens to you has happened to me.

Red: Are you saying that my immediate attraction – it was way more than that by the way – was written into Red Mojo Mama because you had the same experience?

Kathy: Of course, dear girl.

Red: Really? Tell me about it.

Kathy: Well, Pete (my late husband) and I both worked at Yellow Cab – Pete as a safety director and me as a dispatcher. My first night on the job Pete walked by me, said hello in that deep basso voice and that was all she wrote. I fell right then and there. And I fell hard.

Red: What happened next?

Kathy: I chased him until he caught me! (chuckling) Oh, baby – I had a thing for red even back then. The next day I went out and bought me a white suit that I wore with a red polka dot blouse and very high red heels. That night, I timed my need to walk out of dispatch office just right (we had surveillance cameras even then) and nailed him with a killer smile.

Red: Did it work? I mean the killer smile and all.

Kathy: We got married four months later. (proudly chuckling again) Yeah, I’d say it worked.

Red: Cheers to love – at any sight! Oh, and I suppose that’s why I have a pair of hot red heels too?

I just grinned meaningfully and raised my Bloody Mary to hers for a clink of our glasses. Two redheads with a similar past!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Help! My Face is Falling Off!

Ha! I knew that title would get you here. Tricky aren’t I? Seriously though, it feels like my face is literally falling off sometimes.

Ever have those moments when you glance at a mirror and just like your chest (yes, even you guys) everything seems to have moved downward? If not, you may not be over 30.

Here’s the thing – as we age everything does move downward, it’s a natural reaction to gravity. We’re born to resist gravity, but the odds are heavily stacked against us. Humans actually do quite well, learning to stand, usually around six months old, when Mother Earth is doing her damnedest to keep us lying down. We manage to keep walking for the greater majority of our lives, in general. But the entire time, Sir Isaac Newton’s great discovery is working on us, pulling at us, until finally our body begins to give way.

There are a couple of tools in our bag, though, that we don’t use as regularly as we should. First use gravity against itself. Find a way to turn your world upside down. If you can’t stand on your head anymore and can’t afford one of those anti-gravity thingees then at least lie down with your legs on a chair or couch. If you’re really ambitious, start with your butt on the couch, stick your legs up the wall behind it, then put your upper body over the front side. Stay that way for a few minutes every day and you’ll be surprised at the difference it can make.

The very best thing you can do for your face is to smile. Smile as big and as often as you can. The old saying “It takes more muscles to frown than to smile” forgets to point out that the natural set of our faces without either a smile or a frown takes no muscle work at all, yet it does nothing to enhance our natural beauty. Even a toothless grin on a world weary face, where the eyes crinkle too, has splendor. So, exercise your face with a smile whenever you can. It’s good for your face muscles and it’s good for the world.

So, that’s my anti-gravity program in a nutshell. Smile so your face won’t fall off!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

You Betcha', Baby

Red and I have been taking our evening apertifs on the Veranda again, in an effort to shake off my bad case of the blues. Bad girls, bad girls… But seriously, we’ve been considering life as we know it. Here’s what we’ve decided:

Red: I don’t know, Kathy. I think it all comes down to a question of doing what’s right whenever you can and screw the rest of it. 

Kathy: You’re probably right, because in the end, that’s all that matters. Following the rules, observing the traditions, living up to others’ expectations – none of that counts in the scheme of things. It’s having the guts to go with what you know to be right. 

Red: You betcha’ baby! Hey, I love that line in Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day. You know, when she picks up the cigar butt and takes a big toke and dares the guy to challenge her right to smoke one.

Kathy: (laughing) I LOVE that movie, period. Do you realize we’ve watched it four times since Christmas? One of the best presents last year. 

Red: Actually – that movie says it all. When Miss Pettigrew takes a chance and lives by her own code of conduct, things turn out all right. When Amy Adams’ character follows her heart, going for the good guy instead of the rich or influential ones, she’s truly happy. That’s it, isn’t it?

Kathy: You betcha’ baby!

Red: You know, so few people know about that movie. It’s kind of sad isn’t it?

Kathy: A little, yeah. It’s a bit on the funky side, but you know I love anything with Frances McDormand in it and anything English. 

Red: I know, I know. And it is a feel-good movie, that’s for sure.

Kathy: Wanna watch it again? (excitedly)

Red: (sighing heavily) Maybe later. Let’s finish our Bloody Marys first, okay?

Kathy: (holding an imaginary cigar) You betcha’ baby

Monday, July 9, 2012

In Memoriam

My father passed away in the wee hours of the morning today. His last week was a valiant struggle against multiple health problems: COPD, a broken clavicle and a collapsed lung. He was 82 years old and frankly his release from this world was a blessing.

I have a terrible need to do something, say something. So, I will do my best here.

My Pops grew up very poor in Louisiana yet he rose in ranks consistently through his service in the Navy, which included a stint in the US Embassy in Venezuela, then on to several executive positions in companies like Memorex and Avantek. Somewhere along the way he reached the level of Vice President - this from a country boy whose high school graduating class consisted of eleven kids. He never went on to college.

He cut out of the corporate world at the age of 49 and became Lord of “The Property”, the 40 acres my folks brought outside Sutter Creek, California when I was just a kid and turned into a hilltop residence over the years. He bulldozed away many a day, on his DC8 Caterpillar, mending roads and spotting rattlesnakes until my mother and he took up garage saling which led to an overflowing garage of their own and ultimately a business. The pair have been in the antique business for the past 23 years.

He was an ordinary guy, blessed with smarts and charm. He had a 63-year love affair with my mother, Nancy, that began with a declaration on the day he met her that he was going to marry this girl. He wrested her away from her date that day and never looked back.

I’m sure that the remembrances that will be spoken over the next few weeks will be varied and cover many aspects of the man I knew as my Pops. The one shining thing I would hold up in his memory is his ability to forbear, to never give up and fight the good fight until the end.

As other authors will understand – here are a few “tags” for my Pops: handsome, honorable, patriotic, committed, athletic, country, lovable, flirt, romantic, smart, stalwart…

Fred Tully Bryant – Dec. 25,1929 to July 9,2012 - A Life Well-Lived

Monday, July 2, 2012

Results and New Question for You

So a couple of weeks ago I posed the question on Pinterest “Who Should Play Red?” There were only 23 entrants in the drawing for a $50 Amazon gift card! Can you believe it? Those were really good odds I’d say. 

Anyway, the actress who came out on top was Debra Messing, who I actually think is the best choice. Red’s definitely got a smart-alecky humorous side which Debra could really pull off. Now if we could just get her to decide she’s just GOT to play Red – then we’ve got something.

Kathleen Grace’s name was drawn out of those who entered and I’ll be sending her that gift card in the next day or two. Congratulations and thank you Kathleen.

Next up is Mac! For those of you who haven’t read Red Mojo Mama (yes, I know there are some out there), Mac is Red’s dead husband who returns to guide her through the next phase of her life. He’s a handsome, bald-headed tall man with rich mahogany skin and a very big smile. So, I’ve chosen a few actors that ran through my mind while I was writing this story.

Please jump in and give me a Pinterest vote – sign up ya’ll, it’s not that hard – and there’s a chance at a $25 gift card to Amazon in it for you. Who Should Play Mac?

Much love and thanks to those who participated!

Twitter People Make Us Happy

Hello to all of you out there! It’s Red. I rarely wrestle control of the blog away from Kathy, but she’s busy planning something she’s calling the Indo Authors’ Expo and asked me to take over for her. So here goes.

We’ve had a couple of great sales months (comparatively speaking anyway) so Kathy and I were chatting about it over our beloved Bloody Marys – feet up – while watching our bluebirds – Mr. Blue and Mama Blue fight over the loquats on our little tree.

Kathy pointed out that there’s no way she could have ever imagined that a year after starting on Twitter she’d have two accounts and over 30,000 followers. I made the appropriate noises over those numbers (she insists on amazement from her associates) then quickly named a number of close friends she’d made as well.  She smiled, got a little teary-eyed and then we got to reminiscing about some of them.  Don’t be surprised if you recognize yourself!

There’s the beautiful young blogger who is so funny that we both laugh when we read her blogs (I read over Kathy’s shoulder when she’ll let me).  How about that very kind, generous lady who gives her all the tips? The sensitive and intelligent author/blogger who stretches her mind regularly. And how about the men? There’s the one who looks like Tom Skerrit – you know who you are! Then there are a couple of very sweet Southern men, the crazy but cute ranter guy and last but not least, her friend who pretends to be from another planet.

There are folks she’s ridden through milestones with and others who have relentlessly supported the both of us through retweets and mentions.  

Yes, our Twitter world is rich in many ways. She may have come to it late in life, but I think my creator has found herself a niche!  I can attest to the fact that she practically runs to the laptop to see what’s new on Twitter when she’s been deprived for more than an hour or two. I’d personally like to thank you all for making her so happy.

So, from me to all of you – Gracias! And remember – Go Red!