What Would Velma Do

IMG_00011.  I’m back.  That didn’t take long.

2.  The news is full of snow, but yesterday afternoon I sat out on the patio and read my book while 3 big dogs lounged at my feet.  The sun was warm, the breeze was cool, squirrels scampered along the top of the fence, the dogs snored.  I wore a light sweater that I didn’t really need.

3.  Kathryn Harrison on publishing THE KISS:  I got reviews whose last words were “shut up.”  …  I understand myself to be a writer who people aren’t tepid about.  People tend to really like my work or find the subjects I choose — the ones that choose me — offensive.  I like being that writer, not the writer whose work you read and forget.  I like to hit a nerve.  (from WHY WE WRITE, p. 78)

4.  I did not see one minute of The Grammys because I went to bed at 8 p.m.  Now I’m up at 5 a.m., reading through the list of winners, and I hardly recognize any of them, artist or song.  And I realize I don’t care.

4.5  I just watched Taylor Swift’s opening act.  I admit, I’m a little stunned.  That song is the most annoying, ridiculous song.  And it opened The Grammys.  Wow.

5.  This weekend I watched MATCH POINT, a film written and directed by Woody Allen.  Fucking brilliant.

6.  Pope Benedict is resigning.  The first pope to resign in 600 years, citing his advanced age.  Aren’t all popes of advanced age?  I feel like more news must be coming.

7.  Jane Smiley on writing one of my favorite books, A THOUSAND ACRES:  I’ve never given up on a novel.  Although I had my doubts about A Thousand Acres.  I was writing it in the winter in this little office in our new house in Ames, Iowa.  I kept falling asleep as I wrote.  I put the manuscript aside, thinking it must be really boring.  Then spring came and I reread it, and it seemed pretty good.  It turned out the chimney of the furnace was leaking carbon monoxide.  When we stopped using the furnace, the novel stopped putting me to sleep.  The lesson there is, sometimes it’s not as bad as you think.  (from WHY WE WRITE, p. 212)

8.  The Westminster Dog Show starts today!  For balance, check out Just One Pet Products, saving shelter animals.


9.  It’s the Year of the Snake. The colour of the 2013 Year of the Snake is Black, the color of Space, Arctic night, darkness in the Abyss, the color of deep waters. The Black Snake will bring people unexpected changes, instability, and changeability. That is why it is important to plan everything beforehand, and evaluate adequately before taking any actions. You need to be more careful and cautious than ever.

9.5.  I was born in The Year of the Snake.  …… Uh oh.

10.  Here’s to you, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and the freedom of speech.


30 thoughts on “What Would Velma Do

  1. Downith

    1. Thank God. It was too long.
    2. It absolutely poured here all weekend long and then today it snowed. Twice in one year?? Unheard of. But that’s okay, Teri. Keep flaunting your little light sweater that you don’t need.

    4. Last night we stayed up to watch the Bafta’s. Note to self – don’t bother in 2014. No one is that witty and sleep is way better.

    6. Aren’t all popes of advanced age? HAHAHA.

    Why We Write looks awesome!

    1. Teri Carter

      1. I wish I could hop a train and have coffee in your kitchen.
      2. It really was the thinnest, lightest of all sweaters … Brrrr….
      4. (snore)
      6. Surely there is more, right??

    2. Teri Post author

      PS. Was I flaunting? I thought I was boasting. If I tell you I’ve spent 3 days pulling the blue leash that JoJo ATE out of her rear end while she does her business, does that help?

      1. Downith

        Whether you were flaunting or boasting, I was merely teasing. I’m glad someone is having good weather.

        And I’m sorry to hear about JoJo and the blue leash. I mean, I’m laughing my ass off, but in a sympathetic way!

  2. macdougalstreetbaby

    6. Word on the street is that the next Pope may come from Africa.

    Yesterday I opened A THREE DOG LIFE. Thank you for that. It’s beautiful.

  3. jpon

    4. Nice to know they have a show honoring grandmothers 😛 . But had to miss it to watch Downton. Heard some of the winners announced on the radio, but like you, have never heard of any of them.

  4. Pamela

    1. A warm welcome back.
    2. I too am in a light sweater. Texas today: 61 degrees.
    3. Love Kathryn Harrison.
    4. I missed the Grammy’s because — very good reason — we were at the Winspear seeing Lily Tomlin who at 73 made me look by comparison sluggish, creaky, and complacent. She was great, and that’s an understatement. I might even say “amazing,” but I know most of you don’t like that. 🙂
    5. Matchpoint is on my list. You guys are my new “sure thing” testers. I almost never have to do my own sifting anymore.
    8. Just set our Tivo to record Westminster. Thank you, Teri.

    1. Teri Post author

      “Matchpoint” is an older movie (2005 maybe??) and I saw it back then, but it was fun to watch again and follow the complex plot more closely. Such a smart script.

      And even I might say Lily Tomlin was amazing!

  5. sherrystanfastanley

    I haven’t watched the Grammys in years. My two sons keep me apprised of the decent music being made these days, and I’m happy to say Taylor Swift isn’t among their choices.

    I ordered one of those canine calming collars for my son’s boxer, Dimwit Dog, and it came in the mail today. Will let you know if we have any success.

    Hurry back quicker next time, will you?

    1. Teri Post author

      Let me know how that collar works, Sherry. And for at least the last decade, my husband and I would watch The Grammys and say over and over again: what is she wearing? is that music? i can’t understand a word they’re saying!

      Yes, we are 150 years old.

  6. Josey

    you just pulled the first two interviews i read from why we write–not that i’m surprised.

    the grammys were great (shouldn’t it be grammies? that bothered me all evening. i tried to discuss it with my daughter but she wasn’t interested. she also said this morning, “i think i really like bob evans music.” she was talking about bob marley.

    i’ve decided to go to ash wednesday mass. by myself. i’m going to a small catholic church by me that is managed by franciscan monks.

    i don’t even know what else to say about that.

    1. Teri Post author

      Wait, is Ash Wednesday tomorrow? I might go with you. I don’t even know why, but why not.

      I heard this morning that the Pope had “secret surgery” 3 months ago to replace a battery in his pacemaker. A pacemaker that was also a secret. I’m not sure it’s right for the Pope, the leader of one billion Catholics, to be having secret surgeries. If I were a strong Catholic, that would bother me. It seems wrong somehow to keep that a secret.

      1. Josey

        i don’t tell the Holy See, but i bought coffee.

        catholics love secrets; at least, most of the ones i know.

        let’s go to mass together and then write dueling blog posts about it. WHICH…will be posted on valentine’s day in honor of our first date!!!!

        (it’s almost too perfect to believe.)

  7. Paul Lamb

    Match Point, I think, was a reworking of the themes Woody explored in Crimes and Misdemeanors. C and M was a superior film, though both are very good.

    I gave no attention to the Grammys.

    1. Teri Post author

      Thanks, Paul. Now I’m going to watch Crimes and Misdemeanors.

      I love that sentence. “I gave no attention to the Grammys.” So simple. So perfectly dismissive!! (you must be a writer 😉

  8. girl in the hat

    Whew. What a relief. I hate it when my blogging friends leave. I feel so abandoned. And guilty for hanging around.
    Most awards ceremonies suck. I heard Beyonce was great. Oh, different event. All tv blends in my mind. Who’s Taylor Swift?
    Maybe that’s my problem. Maybe I’ll have my heater checked.

    1. Teri Post author

      I love that story about Jane Smiley’s heater. She also said that A THOUSAND ACRES was the only book she’s ever plotted out, and she had to because she was following the KING LEAR lines. She also writes about going off those tracks and having to do a lot of rewriting to get back in line with KL. Interesting.

      1. girl in the hat

        I love the idea of using a beloved piece of writing as a map. I try to do this sometimes, but usually end up with a mess. Recently I read Goon Squad and tried, loosely, to achieve the perspective of the first chapter, but I got lost. It was fun, though. Maybe I’ll try next with plot line.

  9. Lyra

    1. Yay!
    2. Braggy Von Bragerton.
    3. She is one tough cookie. I want to be like that.
    4. I don’t remember the last awards show I watched. It’s weird if it’s on, I need to watch until it goes off. If I never turn it on, I don’t miss it. How much of life is like that?
    5. I’m so glad! I just saw the Rome one and there was something missing. I have loved his last two or three and that one just didn’t sing to me. I haven’t seen Match Point. yes.
    9. Is it me or is that description absolutely enthralling. I want to read the memoir finished by a person born in the year of the snake while we’re in the year of the snake. Deep waters? Jump in, sister. Head first.

    1. Teri Post author

      I love Braggy von Braggerton!! I do love The Oscars — mostly for the dresses — and there’s usually at least one person who goes completely off the rails and does something fun, like the year Adrian Brody kissed Halle Berry.

      (just typing that last sentence shows me that I know too much about who those people are … *sigh*)

      Oh man, YOU would LOVE Match Point. Rent it immediately. (after kids are in bed)

  10. JustAnotherEmpress

    2. Just picturing you on that porch, with that sun and those dogs and that book. Ah. Just ahhhhhh.

    6. Isn’t it just like a Catholic (says the lapsed Catholic) to quit right before the busiest time of year? His worldwide flock will have to get ashed and give stuff up without his papal majesty. (You’d think a clothes horse like him would hold out though, you know, one more yr of wearing the purple on Easter?)

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