Friday, February 24, 2012

Memorable Moments

When I have an interesting, unusual, or frustrating experience, I try to benefit from it by working the incident into a book. I had one yesterday.

It was a very foggy morning. On my thirty mile drive to school, in an effort to clear the back window my car, I somehow hit a button that turned on my flashers. Cars passing by were holding their hands out of the windows, flapping fingers together to let me know I was signaling an emergency that I obviously didn't have.
They didn't know it, but I did have an emergency, in a way. Even though I've had this car a year, I didn't know how to turn off those flashers.
By then, I was on the interstate going sixty-five miles an hour. If I pulled off, it would delay me and I'd be late. I had a test scheduled and I'd threatened my students with penalties if they were late; I couldn't be late myself.
So I kept speeding along, pushing every button I could find, thinking the one I needed had to be connected to the light switches or somewhere in that area. It didn't work. I wondered if I'd turned off my lights when they should be on in a fog. I even sprayed the windshield a few times and nothing happened, except it cleared the fog off of it.
I tried shutting off the motor at a red light but those determined little buggers didn't stop blinking.
What to do? I decided the answer was "Nothing." I had to just let other drivers think I had an emergency or that I was just a bit kooky.
When I reached my destination and parked my car, I solicited the help of the first person I saw. In minutes, the young man reached inside, found a triangular red button in the center of the dash and pushed it. Voila! The annoying flashing stopped.
I bet I'll never forget where that button's located.

I don't know where I'll use this yet. But look for it in one of my books someday.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Books by Authors

I'm pleased that some editors saw TO CATCH A FISH in Octavia's Book Store in New Orleans and asked me if I'd like to submit something for an upcoming issue. The theme is centered on New Orleans stories.
I sent them a short essay about a New Orleans experience and a poem about The Big Easy. I hope they find a spot for them and I'll post it if they do.