Inside Lane

Grab Bag of Thoughts

This is the first time I’ve sat down at my computer in a week. If you’d told me, fifteen years ago, that one day I would be able to use my telephone to do everything I had to wait to get home to do on my PC, I would have just thrown my wallet at you and yelled, “TAKE MY MONEY! I WANT THAT!” Kind of like I do with my phone service provider every month. (Side Note: Thor plays games on my phone. I’ve just had to remind him that if a call comes through while he is playing, he needs to let me know, as that is the primary function of the phone. He looked at me like I was nuts. He probably sees me talk on it once every two months.)

It’s been a good week, ramping up for today’s book signing at Barnes & Noble. I’ll be at the Southlake, Texas location from 2-4pm today. Stop by and say hello. Have a cake pop. I made cake pops. No tiaras this time 😉

So, in 45 minutes I get started on hair and makeup. I seriously considered going to a new makeup shop I heard about, and having them do me up professionally. If they’d had an appointment in the required time frame, I would have. Alas. It’s probably for the best, considering I’ve never walked away from a makeup artist’s chair going, “Wow! I look amazing!” I usually walk away going, “So this is what it would look like if I’d made a truly bad turn in my life.”

Speaking of truly bad turns, I finally started watching Orange is the New Black. It took me a few episodes to get into it and care, but now I’m committed. I’ll be writing about it eventually. I watched episode 10 of Season 1 last night, and I cried like a wounded thing. I saw the pay off coming a mile away, but it was really beautifully done.

How do you help the hopeless?

I worked within the charter program of the Teen Court from the time I was thirteen, until I was twenty-one, and for the last four of those years, I sat on the Board of Directors. That’s a lot of what kept me out of trouble, in that the kids who knew where to find the trouble weren’t inviting me to attend.  And I was never brave, or bored enough to go looking for it beyond the public library, where I would go when I skipped school.

I’m lucky, though. I’ve always had a home, hot water, food, air conditioning, a car, gas for that car, parents who made me go to school (even if they weren’t aware I frequently left after going,) clothes, a bed to sleep in, and people who cared about me. I had first-world, white girl problems, which were very real to me, but which were had in the comfort of my own double bed, and cried out into all the pillows decorating it.

In an early episode of OITNB, Piper’s annoying mother comes to visit. She is complaining to another inmate who has had no visitors, and Nickie tells her she has no place to complain.

Piper: We all have our shit.
Nickie: Yeah, and some of it smells better than others.
Piper: You have no idea what my shit smells like!
Nickie: (leaning in and sniffing) It smells like Shalimar. Must have rubbed off when she hugged you.

It was a great scene, and there’s a lot of truth to it. We do all have our problems, but if you’re reading this, you’re several steps ahead of the woman in Haiti, who is living in a tent, trying to keep her family safe from the elements and physical harm. Or the girls stolen by Boko Haram. Or the family that just moved in to the shelter because they just couldn’t make ends meet.

I think we have to own our problems, and feel our tragedies, but we have to do so in perspective. Yes, I got a painful rejection letter back from an agent. But, I also have an education, the ability to write, and the wherewithal to send a submission in the first place. How many people out there would give an eye tooth just to know how to read? So, I can be sad that I was rejected, but no, I am not allowed to wallow and be depressed about it. I just need to write something better. Work harder.

And help someone else.  Dear lord–just stop thinking about myself for five minutes.

Yeah, these are the deep thoughts I think while watching television. That’s what makes it good television–I’m forced to think.

Right now, I have to think about fixing my first-world, problematic white-girl hair, and hope I can get it to hold shape. If I’m asking people to buy a romance novel, I shouldn’t look like the Winter Soldier.

What I want it to look like:

The perfect Peggy Carter bob.

What humidity does to it:

Versus the Bucky Barnes bob.

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