Author's Posts

I’m still a new-comer to Long Island, having lived here for only five and a half years now. And for three of those years, I was in my room writing a book about living some place else (the book was, of course, When Wanderers Cease to Roam). So really, I’ve only lived here for about three years.

So one day I was driving home from a thrift shop and I spied this shop (above).

It’s a bakery outlet.

Let me repeat that: it’s a Bakery Outlet.

Well, this I had to see.  So I veered off the road and pulled into this shabby parking  lot, and entered a linoleum-floored heaven.

Entenmann’s is a local commercial bakery that supplies boxed cakes and cookies to grocery stores and delis in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. Maybe elsewhere for all I know: all I know is that they”ve been baking their stuff here on Long Island for about 100 years.

And this is their outlet, where you can get bakery seconds for less than half price. Now, you might be asking yourself, “Jeeze…What kind of skeeve would eat second-rate bakery goods?”

The answer is: Moi. Just so you know, this is what a bakery second looks like:

Maybe you can’t see why this box of delicious Super Cinnamons didn’t pass quality control, so here’s a second look:

See how the blobs of sickeningly sweet icing didn’t get plopped on exactly in the center of these buns? That’s what makes this box of $5.99 Super Cinnamons sell for $2.00 at the bakery outlet.

So forget all the stereotypes about Long Island. This place is awesome!

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These are Four Views of My Desk. It’s where I work and all. And I will be avoiding it for a while.Because I am waiting a Verdict.

I sent my Damn France Book proposal and sample chapters to my agent on Tuesday and heard from her that she got it the next day.

And until she calls and says she loooooves it, everybody in my house is under strict orders to not get on my nerves.

Until then, Top Cat is keeping me sedated with grilled cheese sandwiches and VH1’s I Love the 80s on endless loop.

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There was a MONSTER snow storm heading for Long Island on Tuesday night.  So I put a bottle of champagne out in the backyard. For the obvious reasons:

(Wednesday morning): …because there is nothing like Eastern Seaboard Blizzard-chilled champagne on a SNOW DAY.

It snowed all day Wednesday and, judging by my Champagne-O-Meter, we got about a foot of snow.

I made scones for my 4 o’clock tea. “Scones”, as you may know, is an old Scottish word for “Edible Brick of Flour and Butter”.  And yes, that’s quince jelly.  I take an hour every day to watch Judge Judy, and I like to get cozy when I watch Judge Judy let rip.   But all that comfort food went for naught: Channel 2, the Judge Judy channel, had a ONE HOUR Live coverage Special Program  about the blizzard.  Good thing I had that champagne as back-up.

 

Here’s my little Valentine to you all — I hope you all enjoy a packet of hearts and flowers, a nice cup of tea, and a romantic Winter sun set.

And I hope you all have a bottle of champagne hidden in the snow drifts for this weekend.

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You might want to read my article about How I Got Published    here today (click on this link):

http://howpublishingreallyworks.blogspot.com/

And when I say “You might want to read…” what I mean is: “I FORBID you to read that article.”

It’s called reverse psychology.

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Is us, cats what live in yellow house.

Our  servant  enabler  nice lady dat we lives here wid is taking a day off. People-talk iz not our native langwhich.  Special when  servant  enabler  nice lady talk loud. What means:

AHHHHHHHHH!  I’VE HAD ENOUGH OF YOU GODDAM CATS!!!!

Iz not our fault dat lady leaf watercolor painting to dry on desk where we like to throw up on.

Iz not our fault dat lady haf dining room where we like to pee.

Iz not our fault dat leather couch feels so good to sharpen clause on.

Anyhoo. Lady takes day off of us.

If you no where we live, Pleeze come. Our food bowl is half empty. We will sit and stare at bowl till is full.

You do not deserve thanks for rescue us. We are catz.

P.S. Lady say reed here tomorrow for speshul Saturday post. Wait, must rake clause over cashmere sweater. Lady yelling again — what means GLUE FACTORY?

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…my life would be totally different.

That’s my  Deep Thought  for February.

Because if I drank beer ( a beverage I still can’t stand the taste of) when I went to Ireland, I would have spent more time in pubs getting drunk and flirting with black-haired blue-eyed Irishmen,  and less time doing this:

(Note: clever use of tea cup instead of Triscuit.)

For those of you reading along, we are in the Febraury chapter, page 31, of When Wanderers Cease to Roam. If you have my book, this is Back Story Stuff  but if you don’t have my book, well, then, this is Story Stuff.

I wasn’t always an immensely talented watercolor artist. Once upon a time I  was a dedicated embroiderer. So, when I was in a panic about turning 30 [in 1986] and I bought a one-way ticket to the most outlandish place I could think of — Ireland — (I was a big U2 fan) of course I packed about 100 skeins of beautiful French embroidery floss.

In Galway I bought some muslin, a light-weight muslin that gave me problems, but which I stubbornly refused to stop sewing on.

And that’s what I did on my down time  in Ireland: I sewed. I sewed on park benches, I sewed (one memorable rainy Bank Holiday in Roscommon) in the waiting room of a bus shelter for eight hours; I sewed in the evenings in the common rooms of youth hostels. The above Celtic sampler is what I sewed. It took me six weeks. I made it up as I went along — that’s why it’s such a jumble. Also, I did say that I was a mite depressed during this time; maybe that also shows in the wayward looks of it.

That bird (above) in the lower right corner is the bird that is was the Irish pence coin at the time; the harp of course is a national symbol; the creatures hovering above the letters “e ” and “f” are, I believe, from the Book of Kells, and the various knots are various knots.

That piece of embroidery shows up in my book on page 31:

You will never believe how I got that stitch work onto the page:

I took my embroidery to Staples and I laid it down on a color copier. Then I cut up the color copy and taped bits of it along the edge of my journal page. That ratty taped-up color copy is what I turned in to Bloomsbury when I gave them my manuscript; Bloomsbury is such a high-quality printer that what they give you in the book is their scan of my color copy of my embroidery and you can still see the stitches!  (It’s all chain stitch, by the way.)

Trade secrets, my dears, trade secrets.

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