Irreverence and the Bottom Line

Strep is a bitch and a pain and now that I’ve got that out of the way I’ll endeavor to remember what I really started this post to say.  Perhaps it was to confess that now that I like 4 whole Coldplay songs I’m going to have to start calling myself a fan.  No, that wasn’t it.  It’s damnably difficult to write a good kiss in fiction.  I’m pretty sure I meant to say that, but not yet, not right now.

I’m on the 16th chapter of my novel.  I have only 19 chapters total.  I’m in the home stretch.  I was definitely going to say that but I think I was actually going to shout it, first here, and then from my back yard so I could rouse all the cats and dogs in the neighborhood into a satisfying clamor.

I like irreverence and I like the bottom line but nothing in between.

I AM the bottom line most days.

Just counted words so far: 82,182

A number any obsessive compulsive can appreciate.

Projected total number of words: 100, 782.

Arrived at with a minimum of scientific attention.

I expect to reach that number by Friday.

I want to run through the streets yelling like a madwoman all the things that run through my head all day long.

Please don’t be offended if you’re a close personal friend of mine but it’s a fact that if you and I are anywhere near close friends then you’re mad as fucking hell and most certainly would have spent time in a sanatorium with me in the 1920’s.  I am not truly close to any genuinely mentally stable people.  Not a single one.  And don’t think I don’t know mentally stable people, because I do.  I’m just not close to them.

“Fuck you” is a very rude statement.  Or exclamation, if you prefer.  Yet I can’t deny how satisfying it is to say.  Every time I throw a fist into the air and give my war-cry I punctuate it with a resounding “Fuck you!”.  I understand that this is repugnant to many gentle people, but what I want to know is, what do you say that is equivalent to this?  And if you say something that measures up in sentiment then how could it possibly be more acceptable than my choice phrase?  If the feeling behind the words is the same then it isn’t the words that are objectionable but the sentiment.  Right?  Or wrong?

If you say “Curse you!” instead of “Fuck you!” is it not the same thing?  And if you say “Smudge you!” is not your heart expressing the same damnation to me as if you said “Fuck you!”?

Personally, if I believed in God I would have to credit him with enough wit to know that words are words but what’s in a person’s heart is what matters and if you take away the words “Fuck you!” and make them wrong to say, a person will still sometimes have that fuck you feeling and find a fresh way to express it because people’s feelings are generally irrepressible.

Which if I’m being totally honest, is one of the most charming things about us.

I’m trying to give Cricket and Grey a little moment of peace for courting and you have no idea how hard that is to do.

Because if I’m not careful I’ll make the whole book a blossom-drifting honeymoon just because I love them so much but my job as an author is to make them suffer enough for you to take an interest.

What does that say about you?

If you don’t like the tone of this post I suggest you direct your dissatisfaction at Coldplay, most specifically the following songs: “Yellow”, “Viva la Vida”, and “Clocks”.

Chapter sixteen of Cricket and Grey and this post are brought to you by those songs.

I think I need a wee break to watch “Downton Abbey”.

Or maybe I just stay up to write the rest of the chapter?

Can I pace myself and get done?

You know, I don’t think I can.  I think this is hell-for-leather time to the finish line.

Hell or high water.

I wonder what you all are biting the air to get finished, what are you all so excited about you can barely keep from exploding into a dirigible?

That thought is brought to you by my ten year old son who put a dirigible in a five page story he wrote because he wanted to.  Not for homework.  My little guy who has such a hard time writing (for practical reasons) is telling me about the books he’s going to write.  He’s proud to be the son of an artist and a writer and he works at both in his own violent style and it occurred to me today that he and Quentin Tarantino would have so much to talk about and while people (teachers, other parents) may feel shock at his zombie comics with all the severed heads and visceral pools of blood, I think the kid’s going to be alright.

As long as I can keep him alive to adulthood.

So I leave you now to go attend to the courtship of a pugilistic young woman who is learning not to feel alone.

It’s good to be a fictional character in my coterie.

I salute you.

Yes, you.

Last thought of the night: I tried to love a Waterman.

There you go.  My soul, emptied for your enjoyment.



  1. jay says:


    This one comes at you at 110 miles an hour and get out of the way….

    Great to see you feeling well

    I admire your accomplisment with the novel

  2. angelina says:

    I am so close to getting to an important goal point that I believed was my life’s work 31 years ago. It’s taken so many stops and starts. So many book notes that soured and palled, so many book attempts that were unripe and turned out to be exercises in getting it wrong that it feels unbelievable to almost be done with my second draft- first book that ever got to this point with plot sorted out and entire rough draft being at least readable. Third draft will make it much better.

    So I am a little breathless this week. And not from the consumptive morning cough I’m blessed with.

    doing what you’re supposed to be doing is life affirming.

    110 miles per hour is NOT FAST ENOUGH.

  3. angelina says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever been so selfish in my life as I am right now with my time and my attention. I have informed my very supportive family that they will have me back the minute I get to the 2nd draft finish line. Provided I don’t drop dead from exhaustion first.

  4. Aimee says:

    Welcome to the Coldplay bandwagon. I cannot tell you how their music affects me. I have a friend who claims that “every one of their songs sounds exactly the same; how can you respect them?” Pshaw. It’s beautiful and moving, what is there to complain about?

    Have you spent much time with “Cemeteries of London?” “Strawberry Swing?” The whole Viva La Vida album plays like a symphony for me. It grips my heart and sometimes squeezes stuff out of it.

    When you’re ready to move on, maybe try Keane. My boys, especially Nicolas, are addicted.

  5. angelina says:

    To get me back for being so selfish and so excited, life decided to teach me another one of its charming “mini” lessons. My mom spent half of yesterday in ER, my son came home and needed and hour of a pep talk and then his teacher called for an hour long discussion about how scared she is for him. Still, I’m just moving forward. It’s all I can do. I did a double today so I can write this afternoon and I’ll write for part of tomorrow before my mom’s moving truck comes…I move my goal to Sunday, I guess.

    I am slowly listening to more Coldplay Amy. It takes me time. Typically I don’t like more than one or two songs from any band or group. There are exceptions to this, of course (David Bowie, Bach, Simon and Garfunkle) but with new bands I tend to attach to one song and none others. So I’m surprised I like four whole Coldplay songs A LOT. I think I’ll listen to more of the Vida la Viva album. And then maybe I’ll check out some of the other groups you mentioned.

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