Monday, 20 December 2010

It's Alive!

Or so I found the day after Thanksgiving when Charlie, our daughter, and I arrived home to a refrigerator that needed to be defrosted. I can tell you I was just thrilled to have to do this after a 3 1/2 hour car ride. Honestly, I wanted to just chuck the entire frig, but who wants to spend $400-800 on a new frig right before Christmas? (Or any time for that matter.)

So, it's five o'clock. We should be eating dinner, or getting ready to eat dinner. Instead, I'm pulling food out of my refrigerator, stuffing what's salvageable into bags to take to Charlie's parents' house, and leaving other stuff on the counter that can be tossed. (Must be tossed. "Can" is such weak word for what needed to be done.)

I have to admit this was a good thing. I found some things in my refrigerator... Well, I wouldn't have been surprised if when I opened a few of the containers to clean them, they said, "Momma." (If any had looked at my daughter and said, "Sissy," I wouldn't be writing this post. (g)) There were some things that had been shoved to the back that I'd forgotten were in there. Things with expiration dates of (gasp) 2006! (Eep!) Things that looked like they had in 2006, which tells you that perhaps you shouldn't buy that again. (g) (These were of course things like jam and whatnot. At least, that's what I'm claiming.)

In case you are wondering, I do wipe down the inside of the frig when it's needed. We don't spill much, we do rotate or clear out our food every week, so it's not needed often. And sometimes, I'll just wipe down the spill and not disturb anything else. Apparently, I need to start disturbing other things--things that are shoved to the back--say once every couple of months because four years is just unacceptable.


I laugh because four years is so far beyond acceptable that I'm boggled that it went so long. How did that happen?

Well, it's easy. For instance, my husband likes to keep the salsa containers when we get Mexican food to go. This drives me nuts. We never (and I mean never) eat that salsa after we've the food. Just throw the damn thing out. Stop being such a packrat. Honestly, one of those containers was bulging from gas. Had we left it any longer, I am sure the lid would have shot off the top and fermented salsa with moldy green chunks would have been everywhere. Next time, I'll just throw that crap away immediately. Well, as long as he doesn't sneak it past me.

That other stuff, I can't blame on him. It's my fault, but still...

Anyway, we are just lucky that stuff didn't start climbing out of the frig and taking over the house. (Hey, that's a good idea for a horror movie, although I imagine it's already been done. It could be called "The Attack of the Moldy Leftovers.")

Now, I will admit that there are times we have some scary shit in there. You know, those leftovers you keep vowing to eat, but after the fourth time you've had it in so many days, you can't bear to eat another bite. There're only really two of us who eat the food I cook, and I am pretty much the only one who eats leftovers. So, a week passes, and the chili starts looking a little squiggy. In the back of my mind, I know I need to throw it out, but guilt at wasting food gnaws at me, so I leave it. I know I'm not going to eat it, but I just can't bring yourself to throw it away. Another week goes by, and those leftovers are taking on a life of their own. Things are growing, but I am still avoiding it because now they are just gross. Finally, I bite the bullet and open the container and, "Aahhhh!!! It's alive!"

Okay, perhaps it's not quite that bad, but those spots of green with white tufts on top are not to be eaten, it reeks to high heaven, and I think, "I should just throw the whole damn thing out." But I won't. I won't because that would be wasting a good container, and the guilt about not eating the food is already starting to consume me as it is. I guess better guilt than rotten food. HAHAHAHAHA

Judging from all of the images on Google of moldy, scary ass food when searching for a good image to use for this post, I am not the only one with this affliction. (g) Not that I thought I was, but, eh, it's good to know I have some company.

BTW, the images were so disgusting I decided against using any. Instead, I chose good ole Gene Wilder from Young Frankenstein. Much funnier and less stomach churning. (g)

This reminds me of some neighbors I had in college. Three pigs, er, guys. Nice guys, but pigs. One of them asked me what it would cost to hire me to clean their apartment. Well, considering that they had left the dishes in the sink for two weeks and there were maggots in it, the carpet was scary (I never walked barefoot in there, and barefoot is my favorite shoe.), and the bathroom... Well, there were three guys living there. What do you think? Yeah, I let him know he couldn't pay me enough to clean their apartment. That place was one giant petri dish.

Oh, our refrigerator works perfectly now, and you could eat your food from any shelf. (g) Everything that could be taken apart and cleaned on it was. While I don't like cleaning, when I do clean, I am a bit fanatical about it. LOL Things you never thought would be bright white again miraculously blind you from the shine. I can't help myself. It must be the anal part of my nature. LOL

So, any refrigerator horror stories to share? Come on, I know I'm not the only one. (g)

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Pinky Toes, Midnight Wrecks & Nutters

It never fails. I will wake up in the middle of the night, stumble to the bathroom and always—always!—step on something that causes me to have a massive wreck in the son's room, at the base of the stairs, the living room, or, the worst room of all for debris, the kitchen.

Yes, you read that correctly. I said the kitchen. I'll explain in a bit.

However, it's not just me who seems to have this problem. The hubby and my oldest dau have magnet toes. If there's something that they can catch their pinky toes on, they will, especially the hubby. I'm constantly telling him he needs curb sensors on his toes, but then if he walked around wearing those sticking out from his little toes, I'd probably sound like a loon losing its mind.

Now, before I proceed with this blog post, I have to explain something. I'm one of those weird people who laugh at pain, whether it's mine or someone else's doesn't matter. I can't help it, and if I'm honest, I think it's genetic. My mother is a Nutter (okay, Emmy, if you read this, I'm saying this one more time: Yes, Nutter is a real last name and it's English! Uh, wait. Mom's family is nuts, so maybe...nah, it's just a coincidence...right?), and the entire family has this warped sense of humor that also dances on the dark side.

I don't laugh at serious injuries, mind you. It's just those everyday mishaps that strike me as hilarious—and I have no idea why.

Trip and fall? Oh, dear. Let's make sure you're okay—glances at you quickly and sees no pool of blood or bones poking out—and promptly, "Bwahaha!" until tears stream down the face.

Stub your toe? That's a sure method of making me, or anyone on my mother's side, to burst out laughing, especially if I have an image of curb sensors on toes flashing through my brain.

Step on something sharp? OMG, don't yell or dance around; otherwise, I won't be able to help you because I'll be leaning against the wall or on the floor cracking up.

Bang your head off of a cabinet door or light? You better hold your hand on it just in case you need stitches because it'll take me a few minutes to compose myself.

Point in case, just ask my friend Trinity. Since she lives only three hours north of me, we see one another every now and then, so she's been exposed to my warped sense of humor (then again, she laughs so hard at me sometimes she has to be a li'l warped too, right?) and she'll tell you my oldest dau has this same trait.

While getting ready to go home from one of the Lori Foster Get Togethers, my dau opened the room door so I could push this massive suitcase on wheels out into the hall. I rolled it over my toe.

Pain! Glorious pain! I squealed, performed a jig only someone who suffers a serious body tick could understand, and promptly began laughing so hard I could barely walk or talk. The dau totally lost it, too, but the thing is she had no idea what she was even laughing at.

Trinity, who was ahead of us, turned around and said, "All right, Faith. What did you do now?" Which set me off again!

The poor hubby automatically yells, "Just shut up!" when he stubs a toe or cracks his head. He also misses doorways because he has this uncanny knack of looking at me as he's talking and walking then crashes headlong into a doorframe, wall, or sometimes the sides of vehicles. He's also been known to miss a step or two.

The other night, my youngest, who is six, fell off the couch and poked my oldest dau in the eye with his big toe. I totally lost it. As a matter of fact, I'm wiping away tears as I type this!

En garde! It's El Toe-O! (Okay, so maybe you had to be there)

Back to the hubby has a TV in our kitchen where he spends 90% of his time when he's home. Since my youngest boy fights with my youngest dau (12) over the big living room television, my son spends a lot of time playing on the floor in front of the kitchen TV because he shares interest in many of the same programs as my hubby (and if I have to see one more episode of Ax Men I might find an ax of my own...).

Therefore, the boy leaves a lot of Hot Wheels and pieces of his construction town, etc., lying on the floor. Oh, the hubby does his best to scoot the debris off to the side out of the way, but somehow, someway, one or two items are missed or they just sprout legs and wander back out into the traffic area.

Need a drink of water? Take my advice and get it out of the bathroom. No, scratch that. You might step on something in the boy's room since we have to walk through it to get to the bathroom from our bedroom. What's a Hot Wheel between two toes, eh? And seriously, if the boy enjoys playing with the tiny traffic cones—with friggin' points—that goes to his Hot Wheels City, what's stepping on one when you're half-asleep, beary-eyed, and needing to pee? Just don't piss on the carpet as you're disco dancing in the middle of the bedroom, okay?

Maybe it's just me. Maybe it's the Nutter gene of pain=hilarity.

One day my mom opened the freezer of an upright fridge and a frozen chicken fell out and mashed her pinky. An hour later, that sucker looked like a blue-black sausage. What did she do? Laughed and cried at the same time (I couldn't have helped her if my life depended on it).

A couple of months later, she was outside, tripped and fell on the SAME finger. I lost it. Seriously, how do you FALL ON ONE SINGLE FINGER???

Another time my dad was working on the engine of mom's Gran Torino. She walked up behind my father, goosed him, and he jumped, cracking his head. She took off laughing like a hyena as dad cussed the air blue.

I guess I'm a bit curious if this "problem" I have is just me, something genetic, or if others out there have a bit of the same warped sense of humor.

Tap.Tap. Tap. Is this thing on?

Am I alone out here?

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

The Empty Toilet Roll Issue

Dear Empty Toilet Roll,

Much as I understand and appreciate your existence, the need for you to be around, once you can be seen, I do not wish to see you. I don’t mind seeing your grey circular end when you’re tightly wrapped in toilet paper, because then you have a purpose. Then you belong in my bathroom. However, when I can see the whole of your cardboard, cylindrical, hateful piggish body, my immense hatred for you kicks in.

When you’re naked, showing yourself in all your need-to-be-in-the-bin glory, I want to take you in my hands and squeeze you so hard you become a crumpled shadow of your former self. The rage inside me is so bad that I’ve even envisaged murdering you. Yes, many a time I’ve let the scenario run through my mind, where I sneak up on you, lift you gently from wherever your unwanted arse is at the time, and rip you to effing shreds.

I do not wish to see you sitting smugly on my toilet roll holder. I do not wish to see you on top of the cistern. I do not wish to see you lounging—yes, lounging, you lazy shit!—on my bathroom floor. And I particularly do not want to see you on my windowsill. Let me tell you this, and listen to me well: You do not belong in my house when you’re in the buff.

You belong in the bin. If you’re unsure where that is, it’s beside the toilet. Inside the bin is a yellow, lemon-scented bin bag, and you’ll be most welcomed by the empty toothpaste box, the old slither of dried up soap, and the empty shower gel bottles. They will become your friends, and once the bin is full, you will be transported off to find many other such friends, where you will live happily ever after.

Please be aware that next time I see you without your clothes on, you’d better roll away pretty damn fast, because if you don’t, I’m going to self-combust and rage through the house until I find out just WHO ISN’T PUTTING YOU IN THE EFFING BIN!

Yours hatefully,

Sarah Masters

Monday, 13 December 2010

Stupidity in High Places

Stupidity Pictures, Images and Photos

After the blunt, goofy humor of yesterday’s post, today I’m going to rant. {pulls soapbox over and steps up on it} Today I'm ranting about stupidity in high places. I'm in the U.S. but I'm sure readers from other countries will be able to identify with the following peeves of mine. There are times that if I could move to the North Pole, I would--and I hate cold weather!

Now, before any teachers or school officials get ticked off at me, I'm not saying ALL teachers and officials are like the ones in my rant below. I'm speaking of the small percentage who seem to run everything. The ones that even the other teachers and officials rant, bitch and complain about too. The ones that pull me aside in the hall to share their school woes with me because I'm one of the few parents who grabs my flaming sword called Youpissed Meoffagain and go charging into the building screaming "I wear size nine and a half ass-stompers, hear me roar!"

Anyway, my grandfather was a school teacher from the age of seventeen until well into his eighties. He was also a professional college student, and he loved to travel to historic places such as Egypt. The man had common sense as well as a high IQ, a rare combination, imho.

Granddad was also capable of seeing into the future. He could watch how things progressed on a topic or situation and then state what the outcome would be. One such occasion was a comment he made about the U.S. school system.

“Mark my words,” he said, “twenty years from now, the government will stick its nose into the public school system and take not only the rights of the children away from them, but also the teachers and the parents.”

Man, oh man, did he ever nail that one down!

By the time I was in high school, my school district, which is one of the largest in the state of Ohio, began crashing like the Hindenburg. Things became so bad at my high school that I nearly quit school altogether. That’s a story in itself (for starters I was screwed out of a 60K art scholarship), but rest assured, education isn’t about education. It’s about the almighty dollar and power.

Fast forward to now. I have four children of my own and I’ve raised four step-children, too, so I’m well acquainted with three different school districts. Moreover, several members of the State Board of Education know me much better than they would like to. Let’s just say I was up at the last school so much this past year that when a few teachers or the principal saw me coming, they’d make an excuse to leave, followed by a hasty dash out the nearest exit.

The fact of the matter is this: our tax dollars pay their salaries and pay for everything that runs a school system. Since I’m essentially one of their employers, get off your damn arrogant, egotistical fat asses and teach our children, dammit!

Stop giving money to only the football team that should actually go to ALL sports and arts divisions!

Stop letting the kids have a free period in history while you, the teacher, are down the hall bs’ing at the water cooler or handling fundraiser money that should be done AFTER hours!

Stop male teachers from treating girls like they’re shit!

Stop worrying about the proficiency tests that determines how much the kids are learning. If schools would teach, then kids would know their basics! Duh! And while I’m at it, the reason the schools push the proficiency tests is because the higher overall score the school gets, the more funding it gets from the state, and I got that straight from the mouths of several school officials and teachers, including one on the state board.

Stop telling me that my daughter is too dumb to do online schooling (yes, I was told that by a superintendent who nearly got his coffee cup stuffed up his nose). and that I'm just an over protective parent. Hmm, how odd. Online school may be difficult, but now my daughter carries a four-point-oh! And she will graduate early too! Why? Maybe because she's challenged now? Maybe because she's learning?

Teach, dammit! And for God’s sake, get rid of these stupid math text books that require a course in learning how to read the infernal things before the parent can even help their child with a math problem.

What the hell happened to common sense? I’ll tell you what. The government stuck it’s big, fat nose into something that has worked just fine for years. It’s about competing with other countries too. Not every child is going to be in computers. Not every child will be a doctor, nurse, technician, attorney or scientist. A huge portion of all populaces are normal, blue-collar workers. When I was in school, those who wanted or thought they might want a career in something like law or medicine took college prep courses that would aid them in those careers. Now, my oldest daughter is taking calculus because she’s passed all the other math courses and the state insists she needs another one.

Don’t think the government has it’s thumb on everyone? Take this new school district my kids are in since our move. I got a call about a month ago that my youngest had three unexcused absences. Say what? I called the school and reported him ill each day he missed and I sent excuses to school with him when he returned. He’d been sick with a fever for three days, so why were those days unexcused?

Oh, that’s easy. The reason is that the state has employed a new program that schools can join [and get funding if they do so] that prevents truancy. As a result, the only excuse that is accepted is a doctor’s excuse. Imagine the amount of money this costs some parents to take their kids to the doctor for eating something they’re allergic to or a horrible sinus infection, a bad cold, a sore throat, a migraine… Imagine the parents freaking out who only have one family car and the husband or wife uses it five days a week for work [been there many times myself]. What about a doctor office that is often booked solid, so no appointments are available? Well, then you take your child to the ER, which costs even more!

But that’s not all, after five unexcused absences, the truant officer begins harassing the parent, and if your child reaches ten, you’re dragged into court!

Yes, I know there are kids who skip school while their parents are at work, and I realize that there are parents and guardians who don’t keep track of their kids nor give a rat’s ass whether or not they attend school every day.

But does that make it right for the government and schools to penalize everyone for the stupidity of a few?

Like I said, stupidity in high places. And it’s getting worse. It’s up to the parents to take back our rights as parents and those of our children, concerning their welfare and education. From my battles with the government and the school systems, only a small percentage of parent fight for their rights. If we don’t all don’t speak up and do something, the government will control more and more parts of our lives.

Point in case: my oldest daughter’s health. When she was pregnant, the doctor insisted on running various tests. We said no, because we believe that nature should—at times—run its course. What really pissed us off was that she’d already had a test for AIDS, which was negative, but because she changed from one doctor to this one, they said the file was closed and therefore another one had to be done.


When you sign a paper giving a doctor the right to view ALL medical files, how can the medical profession ban you, the patient, or your new doctor from seeing them?

I fought it—and was threatened. Yes, threatened. We were told it was federal law and if my dau didn’t have the AIDS test a second time that she and the baby would be treated like they both had the disease, that I would not be permitted in the delivery room, and that they’d turn the matter over to social services too.

Furious, I told my dau to get dressed and that we were leaving. I also told the doctor she could stuff her office up her ass.

The next week, there was a sign in the sign-in window that said:

“Be nice or leave.”

My reply to that? “Grow a damn brain!”

[Stop by and visit my guest blog at NOW and voice your opinion there on fluff vs meaty fiction. ]

Sex that Makes You Go, Bwahahaha!

sexy and funny stuff Pictures, Images and Photos

As one of my dear friends is prone to saying when I get on a role, "Faith, you are so bad!" I'm dedicating this blog post to her to make her laugh so she'll feel better. Trin, honey, we've both been down similar roads. Things will get better, hon.

Okay, 4SW Groupies, onward to sex that makes you go, bwahahaha! LOL!

One thing that makes me groan in disbelief is some of the unrealistic sex scenes I’ve read in romance books. Years ago, my mother passed a romance novel to me that had me laughing my ass off. It’s been too long to recall the title or author, but what made me laugh so hard was the hero scooping the heroine up onto his horse and making love to her as it galloped around a paddock.

Now, bear in mind that although the positions wouldn’t be that comfortable it is possible, but (big but so what? Dunno why I put that in there, but it’s something my kids have always said) the reason I cracked up laughing was due to two things. A) the author forgot that the woman wore layers of clothing and that the man had on breeches. Somehow, during the bee-bopping going on between hunky He-Man and La-La-Lovely Lady, their clothes suddenly poofed into the ether. And B) the guy was riding bareback--no, not THAT kind of bareback! The horse had no saddle. Sheesh!--so that in itself would make the sex scene virtually impossible. Anyone who has ever ridden a horse without a saddle can verify that it’s quite a feat to hang on and you really have to use the leg muscles to do so.

Besides, imagine doing it on a galloping horse! All together now… “OUCH!”

I’ve written sex scenes such as sex on an idling motorcycle, on a washing machine as it’s washing, a candy cane used as a dildo as she’s on the subway and even one where the hero bangs the girl so hard he scoots her across the living room carpet and she ends up with carpet burn on her ass.

That’s the key to writing a good sex scene: make it real.

Sex isn’t perfect. Sex can be painful.

“Oh! Oh! Oh!” she screamed.

“Yeah, baby,” he replied. “Is it as good for you as it is for me?”

“No!” she yelled louder. “You’re on my damn hair!”

Ever have something come down off a headboard and hit you? I have. It was a flashlight, and I had the black eye for over a week!

WHAP! “Oh, wow. Look at the pretty stars!”

Sex scenes in romantic fiction needs to be romantic, but make it real. And not every man’s pecker is the size of a battering ram. Seriously, if I saw something like that twitching and bobbing around as it came toward me, I’d scream, “Back! Back to the depths of Hell from which thou camest!” And then I’d toss holy water at it and brandish a bottle of saltpeter in a menacing manner.

Sheesh, who the hell has room in their box for a schlong that’s sixteen inches long? Don’t answer that!!!

And for the men who are like that, they’re few and far between. Most are normal-sized guys or slightly bigger, and yeah, as much as we all hate to talk about it, there are the ones who smack theirs around and plead with it to grow up asap.

Sex can be hilarious.

Seriously, we’re all human (well, unless you’re the dude with the sixteen-inch schlong), and we all have bodily functions that cannot always be controlled.

“Oh! Oh! Yeah, baby. Give me more. Harder.” Moan, moan, whimper, moan. “That’s it! Yeah! Yeah…!”


“What the hell?”

“Uhm, sorry, honey.”

“Air! I need air! I don’t give a rat’s ass if it is only two degrees outside, open the effing window!”

And if you have candles lit for your special rendezvous and one of you chooses that inopportune time to have a foghorn boom from your ass, make sure you have a fire extinguisher nearby. The resulting backlash of flames can run into some expensive medical bills.

Or worse, you’re going at it and hear something that sounds like a goose being strangled. What can I say? I have a warped sense of humor.

How about a partner whose breath could strip the varnish right off the coffee table and he or she keeps trying to lay one on you? What do you do? Hand over a Tic Tac? Or maybe politely ask that they go brush their teeth? I vote for pulling the blanket over his head (or her if it’s reversed) and subjecting him to some of his toxic, green haze too.

When I write romance, I incorporate those special sexual moments that every woman or man dreams about, but I also try to keep it real. And yes, I tend to throw in humor, but I refrain from writing farts during sex—so don’t worry.

How about you? Do you hate to read sex scenes that aren’t really believable or do you throw your beliefs to the wind (Prrrfffttt!) and enjoy the improbability of unrealistic sex?

Friday, 10 December 2010

Q & A: There's A Man In The House!

We're doing something a bit different today. Usually we have a lot of fun just passing our problems back and forth to each other. But today, we're taking it a step further. One major issue we women always seem to have is understanding the male of the species. So today, we're going to take on that male mystique and find out what makes it tick. Brindle Chase, male author of mainstream erotic romance, is our guest. AND he's offering to answer all our questions about JACK. Who's JACK? Well, Brindle will tell you. So get all your questions about the great Alpha male ready. No holds barred. All questions will be answered.

Stop by Brindle's
WEBSITE and take a look at his books. He has a free read up at Barnes and Noble--click HERE. And GOTHIC CITY LIGHTS is his newest release from Loose Id Books--click HERE. Before I give the blog over to Brindle, why don't we read the blurb for Gothic City Lights!

t was just a fling. Lilith Templeton had no clue he was a human agent working for the angels. No big deal, but she got caught and Mother Superior, Portland’s most powerful angel, wants penance. Or death, Lilith’s choice. Being a lowly half-demon and therefore not a participant in the never-ending war for souls, she knows it's insane to cross the full-blood demons like Mother Superior wants. But opting out isn't an option: do or die. For additional penance, she's paired with an angel who not only ignites her lust but something more. Lilith wants to fall in love, to know what it was like to share herself with just one man. Yet since succubi needed to stay sexually satisfied, falling in love with the angel of chastity is a mistake she can’t afford.

Gabriel would have never second-guessed his choice to ascend through the virtue of chastity. Until he meets Lilith. Now, his ascension would be forfeit if he cannot vanquish his need for her. Having no choice but to ignore the fire burning inside them, they work towards tempting the demon cult’s human leader into revealing the hideout. Lilith, sexually irresistible half-succubus, is the perfect bait. Get in, send the signal and wait for the angel to rescue her. Oh and not get killed, or tempt the angel. Simple, right?

Okay, time to turn it over to Brindle. Remember, all questions about the great Alpha male are welcome. Don't be shy. Brindle's not. LOL


Think you've got the perfect romance hero? You don't know Jack.

Today, I'm not Brindle Chase... I’m Jack... a romance novel hero. I'm a former sheik--still a billionaire--turned secret agent-corporate raider who sometimes volunteers as a fireman. I drive a Ferrari when my Lamborghini is in the shop, I'm devastatingly handsome, and I’m trained in six deadly forms of martial arts. But my life is incomplete. I’m shallow. Vague. Sure, I look amazing... in fact, I'm fricking gorgeous. I mean, check out these abs... nice, huh? But there's more to me than that... isn't there? To write me, is to know me.

Ask me anything you want to know about the romance hero... but fair warning, my answer will be from the male perspective! Nothing is off limits, so ask away!

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Guest Blogger: Lucy Felthouse and A Small Rant

Please welcome guest blogger, Lucy Felthouse.

She is the editor for the anthology, Uniform Behaviour, and is here today to show it off as well as to invite you to purchase a copy for a very very good cause. You can find Uniform Behaviour HERE and at various other retail outlets all listed on Lucy's website. So stop by and visit her writing home.

Before we get to Uniform Behaviour, Lucy wants to share a bit about something that really ticks her off. She's a Brit, just like our sweet sweet Sarah, and this topic is something we can identify with in the States too. Not a day goes by that I don't have a sentence or two to say about it myself.

Take it away, Lucy!


People in the UK don’t usually need an excuse to complain about tax. Let’s face it, we’re ripped off for tax and politicians seem to piss it up the wall. The money disappears from our accounts and yet they’re telling us we’re still in zillions of pounds of debt. And then to add insult to injury – the country grinds to a standstill because of the weather!

I pay my council tax willingly. OK, not willingly, mainly because I don’t want to get thrown in jail. But anyway, it gets paid and yet, the first sign of inclement weather (which they’ve been warning us about for weeks!) and we’re very quickly in trouble. Now, I don’t expect every single road to be gritted because the salt would run out even more quickly. But I do expect that the main roads are gritted. If they’re not, how on earth are we supposed to get to work?

My workplace is twenty miles away from where I live. The majority of my route is through countryside, but they’re fairly busy roads. I expect that they’re gritted, so I can get to work and back in one piece. It’s all well and good telling me to drive slowly, carefully and don’t make any sudden manoeuvres, but what happens if someone ploughs into me? Not my fault and yet I’ll invariably end up out of pocket and possibly even injured.

Really, is it too much to ask that the money that is prized out of our hands sensibly? All we want is to be able to get on with our lives without dicing with death on the roads! Luckily I have an office job so I’m able to work from home if absolutely necessary, but it’s not ideal. Sort it out councils – I’ve paid you, so do your damn jobs!

And snow, could you please go away now? Don’t you know when you’re not wanted? Yes, I know there are little people playing in you, but they don’t know any better. You cause havoc and you’re cold and wet. And slippery. Be gone.

OK, rant over. For now.

Are you looking for something to warm you up in this Arctic weather? I can assist, and you don’t even have to leave your seat, let alone the house.

I recently edited an erotic anthology, entitled Uniform Behaviour – Steamy Stories About Men and Women in Uniform. It contains sixteen smutty stories from both new and established writers and is guaranteed to get you hot under the collar, and elsewhere!

Whether you love yourself sailors, soldiers, pilots, police, priests or waiters, there’s something here for you. As well as being written and compiled for your titillation, this anthology is also designed to do good. A portion of the proceeds from Uniform Behaviour will be donated to UK charity Help for Heroes, which helps those wounded in current conflict.

So go on, grab yourself a copy. You’ll be doubly warm, once from reading the stories, once from knowing you’ve donated to a worthy cause.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m just going to look at the cover again. Mmm…

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Jess, Tess, And The Goose


For those of you reading the blog you know I’ve been talking about family this week—mainly one member—MY JESS. She’s a good girl, really is. She can be my rock sometimes. She’s awfully sweet and very pretty. Very smart—I know you’re not sure about that, but she IS smart. She’s simply young and makes mistakes and basically she’s working out the kinks in her personality. In the meantime, she’s good blog material.

Yep, she knows I’m blogging about her too. Hasn’t read the posts, but just laughs when I tell her about them. Glad she has a sense of humor. So today is going to be no different. This post is about Jess, well, sort of.

My family loves dogs. No cats in sight. Although I’m beginning to think we should have been cat lovers because they take up less room and don’t eat quite as much and aren’t always in your face. Cats have a much more independent nature than dogs, in my opinion.

Jess talked us into letting her adopt a dog from the local pound about two weeks ago. Actually, she didn’t talk me into it; she talked her dad into it. He’s my brother and lives with us—temporary arrangement going on nine years now. Anyway, she takes her money and hands it over to these people who know oh so much about dogs and require you to give them a driver’s license and sign in blood that the dog will be cared for. So she does this and brings the dog home. It’s a beagle. She knew I’d immediately fall in love with the little thing as I’m partial to beagles and we had another beagle that died, Sammie, and that dog was so special to me.

Jess was very proud of herself. We gave her no input at all. No one went with her. She brought it home, and the dog is standing there in the living room meeting us all for the first time, wagging its cute little tail. Just adorable. Jess announces its two years old and house-trained. It’s had its shots and an appointment to be fixed (thank ya verra much), and it has the micro-chip and has been tested for several things including heart worms and has been wormed.

And then the dog coughed.

Whoaaaaa…and what a cough it was. Sounded like a goose. And then it coughed some more. I mean the dog was seized by a coughing fit. Everyone is hurrying around—“what’ll we do, what’ll we do?” “Give it some water, idiots.” Yeah, I have good ideas from time to time. So the dog has a bowl of water placed in front of him, and he laps at it. Coughs a few more times and then gets quiet and goes back to wagging its tail. Crisis over.

Yeah, right.

I said, “Think he’s got a cold?”

Jess shook her head. “No, he does that.”

Now that got my attention. “Does what?”

“Coughs some times. The people at the pound said he was nervous.”

Okay, that didn’t sound right. Am I the only one who thinks that doesn’t sound right? I mean really? A dog is nervous so it coughs? Why not bite its nails or shake uncontrollably or something?

“Once he gets used to us he’ll stop.” Jess grins, picks the dog up and hugs him tightly to her.

So three days later I’m on my knees cleaning up Ace’s (yep, she named him Ace) little accident on the carpet (the dog was NOT house-trained as advertised) while ingesting caffeine intravenously into my free arm because I HAVE NOT HAD ONE NIGHT OF SLEEP SINCE THE DOG ARRIVED. We ALL wake up in the middle of the night to the sound of a flock of geese flying around inside our house and HONKING like crazy! The dog has not stopped coughing. Jess’ Dad is sleep walking at work, and her brother is falling asleep at his desk at school. And me? I’m going through the motions of living while dealing with an upper respiratory infection and a fractured wrist.

And what is Jess doing? Well, she’s going on about her routine just like everything is fine. Why? Cause Jess is in love. Her clothes are in this house, all her belongings, basically. She showers here, eats here, dresses here, does homework here, gets money here, etc. etc. etc. BUT! She doesn’t sleep here. Every night somewhere between ten and eleven, she rolls out my door en route to boyfriend’s house.

So the big argument started on DAY FOUR. As a family, we informed her that she would stay with the dog and clean up its poop and participate in house breaking it and sleep with the dog and deal with its coughing and it was non-negotiable. She argued that it made no sense for her to have to stay home with the dog. That the dog would still sound like a goose and wake everyone up regardless of her presence. She had a point there. But so did I. And my point was this:


“Well, what do I do about my boyfriend?”

“Tell him good bye or introduce him to your goose.” And those were my final words on the subject.

Now you’re probably thinking there is something wrong with the dog. After three days so am I. I called the pound and talked to them and was assured that the dog is in perfect health and just adjusting—however—big however here—they suggested that maybe the dog has an allergy, and he’s allergic to something in our home. To which I replied, “He was honking like a goose at your facility too.” They had no comeback for that.

So Jess loads up her dog nightly—after we’ve dealt with it all day long while she is in school and all evening while she is at work (mostly me)—and takes little Ace to her boyfriend’s house. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHA.

One night at said boyfriend’s house with THE GOOSE and she’s hell bound to the vet’s office. And I knew it was going to cost me money. I just gave her my debit card and went back to typing on my freebie Christmas story. Shameless plug here. I’m almost finished with that story and you’ll be able to download it from Got Romance Reviews in the next week or so. The book is entitled Blame It On Mistletoe, and I hope you enjoy it.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled session with the trials and tribulations of Tess.

So, three hours with the vet and a hundred and fifty bucks of my money later, Jess comes home and announces that the dog has bronchitis. The dog has three bottles of pills and everything should be okay. That was a week and a half ago and the dog is still THE GOOSE. I called the vet day before yesterday and got a refill. But if the dog doesn’t stop hacking away in four to five days, the vet wants to run more tests to the tune of THREE HUNDRED BUCKS.

In the meantime, the dog had an appointment with the pound to be fixed and they won’t take him now because he’s sick. @#!%$#@!@#%$#@!@#$%$#@$#!@#$%$#@!#@$#!@#$$%$#@!

Yep, sometimes only a string of swear words will do.

The vet suggests I tell the pound they have to pay for the tests. And that’s exactly what I’m going to do if it comes to that and this second round of antibiotics doesn’t work. I seriously doubt the pound is going to say, “sure, no problem.” So that means taking them to small claims court. Or rather Jess doing that. I don’t see it happening. I just see me with less money. One thing the vet did do to help out Jess and her boyfriend (yes, I still make her take the dog with her to his house) is that she prescribed something to relax the dog and make it sleepy. So it doesn’t cough quite as much. I guess we’ll know for sure in a few days if the dog is well or not.

And through it all, I keep hoping that whatever is wrong with the dog it’s something that can be cured and the dog will be okay. One more thing. Vets judge a dog’s age by their teeth. I can’t do it, of course, but I trust the vet to know. Remember how I said the pound told her the dog is two? Well, the dog is more like eight. At the very least, at the end of this road we’re on with THE GOOSE, I plan on writing a letter straight from HELL to the pound.