Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Friday, August 04, 2006

So, What's News?

by Kerry Blair

I’m feeling as lackluster today when it comes to blogging as Stephanie said she did on Wednesday. (Do you think there's something in the pond water?) To procrastinate writing, I’ve been reading online news. (Talk about random.) Join me?

By midmorning, the mercury was at 90 in New York City, 92 in Philadelphia and Boston and 97 in Richmond…with the humidity, temperatures felt like 100 or higher. (AP)

Excuse my callousness, but in Phoenix we call 100-degree weather winter. If it’s not hot enough to fry a rattlesnake egg on the sidewalk (above 110) or melt the asphalt at the airport (above 120) it’s not hot. If heat was the serial killer some of these governors claim, there’d be 4 million fewer people in Southern Arizona. What kills people in heat waves is lack of knowledge (they drink beer and cola instead of water and wonder why they dehydrate) and preparation. There’s a lesson for me in that “be prepared” thing, but I prefer not to think about it. While I have stored enough water, I also have a 72-hour kit stocked with formula and diapers. (The baby recently turned 19.)

“I've spoken to the bear’s owner and he is not very pleased at all.” Daniel Medley, manager of a museum where a $75,000 teddy bear was ripped apart by the overnight guard dog. (AP)

My dog dreams of a night in paradise. (We’ve watched the AOL video together three times now.) While I frequent thrift stores to keep her supplied with stuffed toys to maul, I rarely pay seventy-five cents—let alone $75,000—for a fuzzy. Some people have way too much disposable income. I wish I were one of them. I have no idea what I’d actually do with that much money, though. You? If somebody handed you a huge wad of cash and you had to spend it on one thing, today, what would that thing be? Give me some ideas. (Not that I’m expecting a windfall, but I do believe in being prepared. See above.)

“We deal with those tabloids all the time. You get tired of responding. It’s like punching Jell-O.” Karl Engemann, Marie Osmond’s manager, on an Enquirer report claiming the singer’s recent dreadful reaction to medication was a suicide attempt. (AOL)

It’s stories like this that make me glad Jeff’s the one headed for fame and fortune. While I’d love the royalty check that comes with a national bestseller, when I read things like this I am happy to be so far out of the limelight that I might as well be writing from under a rock. What is with those people? I may not build and bless the world with my words, but it would never occur to me to use them to hurt and destroy, either. As hard as it would be to do, I wish someone would nail that "Jell-O" to a tree.

But now that I’ve thought about that fame thing, maybe I do want a little - just enough to make my non-LDS family finally believe I’m a “real” writer. Anybody else have that problem? Desperate for credibility, I once took my mother-in-law into a Utah Seagull Book store because I had a new book out. (Repeat after me, "Show off!") Sure enough, there was a huge stack of my books by the front door. I beamed. Her comment: “Oh! They have so many! Thank goodness they’re selling them for 20% off. Maybe somebody will buy one.” Suffice it to say that publishing hasn't been good for my ego. Unfortunately, I don't have anything to get me on America's Got Talent!, either.

“Shiite and Sunni are going to have to love their children more than they hate each other.” General Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on what has to happen before there will be peace in Iraq. (AP)

Marines aren’t renowned for their philosophic bents, but this statement by General Pace struck me as profound. I wish the Marines could lay down their guns and put up billboards: “Love your children more than you hate your neighbor.” (If that sounded sardonic, I didn't mean for it to. I think there's eternal truth in what the man said.) Of course, the signs would have to be printed in Arabic. And Hebrew. And Arabic again (for Hezbollah). And Korean. And Dari Persian. And English. many languages are there in the world, anyway? At any rate, I loved the thought and like the man better for having said it.

That's it for me. What’s news in your part of the planet?


At 8/04/2006 5:11 PM, Anonymous Jennie said...

I'm not a hot weather fan. 90 is hotter than I want it to be. I don't like cold weather either. I guess I'm just hard to please, but I agree with you thoroughly about a little basic, realistic preparedness for weather extremes.

I play games in my head all the time about what I'd do with a really big wad of cash. A $75,000 teddy bear doesn't even begin to make my list.

And you're so right about General Pace's comment. "Love your children more than you hate your neighbor" would solve most of the world's problems. It seems like Someone else once said something a lot like that.

At 8/04/2006 7:54 PM, Blogger Cheri said...

I've often pondered what I would do if a long lost relative left me a tidy sum of green stuff. So far my inheritance has consisted of a brilliant orange plastic boat that once belonged to my father, something my children lost on purpose in a nearby swamp---and a decrepit looking Chevy Luv that my grandfather once thought was really cool. I used it to migrate into the hills to pick huckleberries until it finally gave up the ghost.

As for the Jello item, and possibly the world strife currently going on, here's a saying my mother borrowed from Thumper's mother: "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all."

That inheritance possibly means more than the boat and the truck put together. =)

At 8/04/2006 8:10 PM, Blogger KB said...

I would buy, in this order:

1. A personal chef
2. Housekeeper
3. Errand runner

Oh wait! That's what kids are for... :)

At 8/04/2006 8:32 PM, Anonymous Gary said...

As one who lived in Mesa AZ for many years it always seemed strange that people had such a hard time when it gets over 100. But your right, it is all a matter of preperation.

P.S. - I loved the marine generals quote.

At 8/04/2006 11:23 PM, Blogger Karen Hoover said...

LOL Gary! I first read preparation as PERSPIRation. Guess I should get my eyes checked, eh?

At 8/05/2006 1:08 AM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

Funny, Karen, because I thought that too! But I don't think it's our eyes, I think it's his spelling. I do know for a fact, however, that gary has many other sterling qualities. :-)

At 8/05/2006 11:54 PM, Anonymous Linda w said...

Actually, I have given the money question a great deal of thought, as I'm about to receive a large inheritance, I've known was coming most of my adult life. I've decided I am going to pay off my childrens' student loans. That should take care of all 80 thousand! Well, I might save out a few bucks to buy a new pair of shoes or a book or something.

At 8/07/2006 11:49 AM, Blogger Keith Fisher said...

I would pay off the mortgage and other debts. start a college fund for my daughter and my wife, then if anything was left I'd do the same selfish thing for my family.

Even though i am not published yet, I have noticed the lack of credibillity problem. I have a neighbor who suggested that I publish my book myself (one sided, wirebound).

At 8/07/2006 12:18 PM, Blogger RobisonWells said...

When my wife's Grandma died we inherited stock in Arctic Circle. (I actually think it was some kind of bond, or something. I know nothing about finances.) Anyway, the Square Pumpkin paid off in the amount of 750 dollars, baby!

At 8/07/2006 4:38 PM, Anonymous Janice Sperry said...

I would be happy with a car that didn't leave parts behind when you pull out of the garage.


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