Author Rena Marks

Author Rena Marks


This blog is set up simply; its content depends on the day of the week. For instance, should a blog be posted on:

Monday's Musings:

A special day reserved for sharing of recipes, or tips on using essential oils, or simple promotion techniques, anything and everything.

Tuesday's Toys:

Oh, you guessed it. Naughty stories and recommendations on our favorites!

Wicked Wednesday:

Reviews of erotic romance books to make it easier to select your wish list! Plus erotic romance author interviews.

Tarot Thursday:

Add your name to the list and one person will be selected for free tarot reading. Or a palm. Or find horoscopes here.

Feminine Friday:

All about the female attitude and fantasies. What do women want? We'll speak of anything that amuses us, cougars, pumas, whatever.

Scintillating Saturday:

Art. Ah, the beauty of man, the physique, the slick gleam of sweat glistening across six-pack abs.

Sunday's Sins:

Time to confess, ladies! Bring out those embarassing sexual encounters, or the story of the odd boyfriend you had to ditch.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Practicing Grace

I don't have a lot planned this weekend. I have my baby girl, we're going to learn to crochet now so we'll be really good when we're little old ladies and are supposed to. Then we may go looking at puppies, just because. Probably some shoe shopping and yard work and the book store, all in that order.
But as usual, the weekend exploded. I thought I’d mow the lawn one last time, a really quick one. The back yard took longer than I expected, because I wanted all the pretty zigzag mow marks. I moved to the front.
Crap, Lou was out. I left the lawn mower running, so he would know I was busy, and kept my iPod blaring. I was halfway through when he snuck up behind me, motioning for me to turn off the lawnmower.
But like a good neighbor, I plastered a smile on my face and let it stop.
He began talking. I wondered if he would notice I was listening to the iPod instead. Then I remembered my new mantra. Be graceful to those with lesser brainpower.
So I sighed and pulled the earbuds from my ears.
He hadn’t noticed, and was in the middle of a conversation. “--now, sweetheart. I haven’t asked a woman out in years, you know. I’m a bit nervous… So would you like to go out to dinner?”
Behind the glasses that magnify his eyes, he blinks in surprise.
“Why not?”
I could have mentioned he was in his LATE eighties. But he knows that. I could have mentioned he smells. But he knows that also.
And I was still working on my grace.
“I have my child this weekend.”
He wasn’t about to let me have a tactful excuse. “So? The kid can stay alone for an hour.”
I ground my teeth. “But I enjoy my time with my kid. I don’t choose to waste any of it when I have her.”
A wasp flew around his face. I was actually kinda impressed with the way he stayed calm. It buzzed around his mouth, drawing attention to his rather large, false, horse-teeth, upward to his thick eyeglasses.
Suddenly he twitched, as he heard the buzz. In a split second, I realized I shouldn’t have been impressed with what I thought was his zen moment. He wasn’t calm at all, but had a delayed reaction.
He spun his eyeballs around to see what was buzzing. When he realized what it was, he raised his hand to smack it. Unfortunately, he miscalculated (the quadruple-focals are tricky) and smacked himself in the nose on the way to the forehead, which he hit also.
The wasp flew away. Lou tried to act casual, as if he didn’t just bop himself twice.
Then he leaned back, body stance sultry, and I realized he forgot he’d already asked me out and was about to do it all over again. Damn dementia.
Suddenly, a fit of giggles caught me. I coughed into my hand, then cleared my throat. “Why don’t you ask Eddie to go to dinner with you instead?”
He looked astonished that I read his mind in the asking out of dinner. Then a wave of disgust washed over his face. “Awww, I go to dinner with him all the time.”
Eddie is our other neighbor, and lost his wife right before old Lou did. They were currently on the prowl for women.
“Now sweetheart,” he starts again, “I haven’t asked a woman out in years, you know. I’m a bit nervous… So would you like to go out to dinner?”
This time I was more prepared. “No. I have a date already.”
“He’s not black, is he? Bah!” he throws his hand down at me in disgust. “I don’t know why such beautiful women go out with black men!”
Holy crap. My fingers twitch on the lawnmower. I fight the urge to mow him down, though the mental image of bloody body parts flying every which way sends me a perverse sense of glee. Instead, I smile. The gleam of my recently bleached teeth makes him blink in surprise.
“Because size matters,” I whisper slowly and distinctly. “Because once you go black, you never go back. Never, ever let a woman tell you dick size isn’t important. It is. We lie through our teeth. When you pull your pants down and have an average little willie, we fight the urge to laugh. That’s why we lie and try to make you feel better. Silly women are guilty creatures. But then we dump your ass for the luscious guy built like a show-horse.”
“Geeezus!” he mutters, his face white.
I smile wider.
“Mommy!” my child yells from the upstairs window.
“Gotta run,” I say, in the sweetest voice I can muster. I turn and deliberately let my hips sway in a bellydancer walk. I am practicing grace, I chant. Mostly it's guilt, because I don't know how much baby girl heard.
I let the door slam behind me. “Yes, tickle-bug?” I ask the child who resembles me the most.
“You were talking to Lou an awful long time,” she begins tactfully.
Great. The child who resembles me doesn’t need to remind herself of grace, it’s already there. Somewhere in the last twenty years, I’ve lost mine. Suddenly I want her to keep hers.
“Yes.” I refrain from telling her the racist comments, knowing how it instantly fires up my first daughter to the boiling point. I decide I can let my littlest daughter retain her charm. But the anger is still there, under my skin when I say, “The dirty old creeper asked me out again.”
“Mommy,” she chastises gently. “It takes a lot of courage to ask out a woman! What a brave soul!”
I smile, ever so sweetly. “Then you should go out with him.”
She smiles sweetly back, then sighs. “You turned him down again, didn’t you?”
“Yes, but it was gently,” I share.
Because it was. I didn’t mow him down. There weren’t bloody body parts scattered up and down the block. Bravo for my grace! All the mantra chanting works. I recommend it highly.


The things we do for girlfriends!

Especially when we know our own weaknesses. Trish called me up to go with her to the dance shoe store. She needed a pair of Zumba shoes for our latest addiction. (I'll admit to already buying mine at an online price I couldn't ignore, and felt quite proud at my savvy bargaining.)

Being the supportive friend that I am, I sucked it up and agreed to go with her, even though there is nothing that I need. In December. The month of Christmas shopping. The month of budgeting.

Now, you must understand, me and's like putting a drug addict in a pharmaceutical closet and telling him there's no inventory tracking. But I psyched myself to be strong, cuz Trish needed me. I would do what it takes.

Close my eyes.
Hold my breath.
Think baseball.

She tried on Zumba shoes but dammit. There was one size in Size 6. My size. Coincidence? I think not. I think fate was screaming my name. Trying to give me a must buy. You only live once. Enjoy life.

“I don't need Zumba shoes,” I argued with the Rena who wears devil horns at conferences.
“But what if the bargain pair you bought gives you...bunions?” the bitch argued back.

Bunions? Holy shit, I never thought of that. I'm not even quite sure what bunions are. It's something about a blister and an onion, right? I ask my friend AnaMaria, the store owner- who by now we've talked into going to salsa with us.

“Ugly, ugglly painful growths on the side of your foot, base of ze toe. You must tape ze foot to keep them from hurting! But worse ever than the pain, they are soooo ugg-lly. A fate worse than death, a woman with uggly feet,” she says in her heavy accent. The woman speaks five languages and mixes all at least four of them together.

Tricia and I stare, wide-eyed. Horrified. Ugly feet. That is a fate worse than death.

The pain – oh, well... whatever. Every woman can handle pain. Childbirth. Breast cancer. Death, divorce, desertion.

We're supermoms.

But, Lord help me, please don't give me ugly feet. Please, please, please. I promise to be good. Forever. I'll feed the homeless. I'll foster horrible children. I'll be nice, even to the wackos. Amen.

And then I see Trish's eyes cross over in a glazed look I know too well. Oh, no. I try to think about saving her, but all too soon I'm sucked in.

My body starts to shake, my eyeballs rattling back and forth in tiny convulsions as I fight the urge to look. I continue to stare into her eyes, but get distracted by the glowing flecks of glitter reflected in them.

“...I designed these little beauties for salsa,” AnaMaria is speaking from a distance, her own voice in a fog. I can tell she's in the same zone as Trish, the pull of which I'm resisting desperately. “I saved a pair for myself. I shall wear them when we go.”

Trish starts to reach out, her hand stretching in slow motion. “Do you have 'ize Eht?” she asks in the same Italian/Portuguese/Spanglish accent of AnaMaria because her brain is not fully functioning.

I try to slap Trish's hand from the little hand-made sin of leather and rhinestones. But I make the mistake that will cost me my credit card limit increase. I look away from her eyes, and hear the little Demon Rena laughing over my shoulder, the way she always does when I sucker for curiousity.

Oooh, the pain of the glowing beauty when it hits my vision! Black, soft leather rubbed to perfection. Tiny little cutouts filled with silky black mesh, like the eroticism of smoothing black hose over your legs. Long, curling straps of elegance that wind around in criss-crosses around slender ankles. Imbedded are dainty rhinestones that twinkle in the night, adding the bling-bling in the slightly trashy way one who leans toward prostitution loves best.

My voice hasn't taken on the thickened accent of the other two yet. Instead, it comes from my throat in a monotonous, Stepford Wives quality.

“Do you have size 6?”

The most sickening part of the whole adventure is... I don't need Zumba shoes. I don't need salsa shoes. But Trish and I trudge back to the car, hampered by our huge, garbage-sized bags of boxed shoes, four pair to be exact. Guilt has stricken us both to utter silence, we're unable to even look at each other, like two junkies who fell off the wagon. Two AA members who were caught passing a flask at a meeting.

Hanging our heads down in shame, we climb in. Still taking care to place the precious shoes in gently, and strapping them into the seatbelt, lest they break during the ride home.

“You have got to be kidding.” Her daughter says from the back seat, counting the boxes, her voice dripping with disgust.

We ignore the child, knowing all to well her day is coming too.

Later that night, I text Trish.

“Are you walking around the house wearing the strappy shoes?”
“No.” she responds immediately.

It takes me a few minutes to text back.
“Oh. Me neither. Just doing the dishes.”

I hop up on the counter and guiltily unhook the winding, looping straps that grace the gentle curves of my Zumba-induced, super-model ankles.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Back to the Loonybin Neighborhood

There are some days when my child and I like to eat our dinner on the front porch, where we can watch the neighborhood. Katie walks by, walking her cute little ankle-sized dog – so well behaved it can stroll next to her without a leash.
Like a bite-sized morsel of Coyote bait.
There’s a nameless woman down the block that walks her black and white dog on a plain rope instead of a store-bought leash. Ironically, her hair is dyed jet-black and she wears a white tee shirt with a black miniskirt, black and white striped thigh highs underneath.
Talk about looking like your pet.
“Funny neighborhood we live in,” my child comments. Her fork pauses midway to her mouth and her eyes widen.
“OH, OH.”
Somehow, I just knew. . .
“Sweetheart! Sweetheart! Put down that plate of food and get over here!” He says this like I can stand to skip a few meals. “I’m having a garage sale, come pick out school clothes for your daughter.”
“Later,” I scream back, because he’s deaf as a doornail.
“Now,” he yells. “You hardly need to be eating.”
Deliberately, I shove the entire salmon into my mouth, chewing slowly.
“Agh,” he yells in disgust. Then warns, “You’re going to get fat!”
“Geezer,” I snap.
“Mommy!” my child says, astonished.
“He’s deaf. He can’t hear unless you scream in his ear. Watch this.”
I set my plate down onto my lap. “We’ll be over in a bit,” I call out. “You smelly old bastard.”
He grins and waves.
“See? Can’t hear a thing.”
“That’s creepy,” she says, eyes huge.
“Come on, we’ll drive the car over so we can make a quick getaway. Tell him we’re going to Staples or something and don’t have much time.”
In two minutes, we drive right across the street and park in front of his house. Then we ring his bell. (Twice, because of the deafness.) It bongs at a preset high volume, loud enough to hear from a five house radius. Guiltily I look around, wondering if the neighbors can hear the gong and are curious as to who would be visiting him.
By the time he opens the locked front door and security door, he’s forgotten he invited us over. “Who’s that?” he says, peering at my car.
“It’s us,” I shout. “We drove over. We have to get to the store after.”
“Oh, it’s you,” he says, unlocking the security door. “Come in, come in.”
I walk quickly to the basement steps. His house is exactly the same floor plan as mine, but inverted. I turn behind me to see my little girl staring with huge eyes, watching him fumble with the security door.
“He’s locked us in!” she mouths to me.
I speak normally. “He can’t hear you, remember?”
She gets curious. She tests the theory, and says loudly, “Think he’ll murder us in the basement? There’s a drain in the floor for the blood.”
“Nah,” I say, eyeballing his string-bean body. “There’s two of us. We can take him.”
The three of us head down the stairs. My child giggles, and I look behind me. I stop suddenly, and he bangs into me cause his eyes aren’t looking ahead.
Old Lou is staring at my ass.
“Oww,” he says, half-embarrassed.
I smile sweetly, because I was so polite. Next time he’s losing a testicle.
Down in his basement of hidden torture, there are racks upon racks of clothing, set up and smelling like a Goodwill store.
“There are some clothes here with the price tags on!” He shouts, beaming proud as punch. “Thirty five pair of white jeans.”
“I’ve never seen white jeans,” my daughter murmurs.
“They stopped making them long, long ago. See how the waist hits you in the middle of your back?”
“What size are you?” Lou yells at Karah. “My Helen was a four to a six.”
“Double-damn!” I yell back, relieved. “She’s a size zero. That’s too bad.”
“Mommy, YOU wear size six,” my child says, trying to be helpful.
“Funny.” I give her the evil eye, because I’ve waited my whole life to be a parent just for moments like these. Guilt trips. The warning stares. The stories of hiking ten miles to school in blizzards. “Like I want to dress like his wife. Next he’ll have me dyeing my hair black like her.”
I turn my attention back to the geezer. “Well, too bad, Lou,” I scream. “Thanks anyway.”
He starts turning off the basement lamps. Shadows dance across the walls and in a corner…I think there are shackles.
My first thought is a torturous device.
Scarier is the second thought. A sexual device.
I start moving quickly to the stairs when I feel my child at my heels. Panic ensues for some odd reason. We race up, I’m taking the stairs two at a time. But she’s got long legs and threatens to overtake me, palms on my back as if she’ll push me out of the way. All’s fair in love and war.
“Hurry,” she pants. “He’s coming.” Tiny fingers are clutching at my shoulder, trying to squeeze her way around me.
We burst out of the basement door together. Freedom is so close, I can see it.
We slam into the damn security door. I twiddle with the lock. It flips back and forth both ways, but stays locked.
“Mommy,” she screams in my ear. “He’s coming!” She begins banging on the bars. As if that’ll help.
Heavy footsteps thud up the steps. Finally it unlatches and her little hand shoves me in the back as we both scramble to get out. We stumble down the front walk, running down to the car.
“Quick! Unlock the car doors,” she screams as Lou gets to the security door. Already there, child. The doors click and we jump in as he stands on the front door screaming, “Come again soon!”
As we pull away, she pants. “Oooh, that was close.”
“Yeah,” I agree. “And you almost had to go to school dressed like a little old lady.”
“What do you mean?” she blinks innocently. “Some of those clothes were cute! I especially loved the flowery top.”
Yikes, I seem to remember that top in an old newspaper clipping featuring the Charles Manson murders.
“Are you kidding me?”
She looks incredulous. “What? Didn’t you see that furry drapy thing? That’s why I said you were size six, too. So you could get something cute.”
Sigh. Apparently my child inherited her fashion gene from... my mother.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Never Trust Male Friends

My, we'll call him Joe, wants me to meet his brother. His brother has been single for a long, long time and is unhappy. His biological clock is ticking, he wants to meet a woman and get married. Anyone else getting that panicked feeling that says run the other way? Because my girly womb is quite alright with being dusty.
Now, my friend Joe can't believe that a woman is happy being single, and is always trying to prove to me that there's some part of me that's unhappy. (Joe doesn't quite realize I'm not "settling" for anything just to be with someone, which is what he's willing to do.) But fine, I'll meet his brother. It might be worth a couple dates, some interesting conversation.
It's an hour long drive. Halfway there, Joe - who has been singing his brother's praises for half an hour, including his six figure income, mentions "There's this one little thing."
"What thing?" I ask warily.
"He likes to collect Matchbox cars."
"Ok," I mutter slowly, as the first thought of he's an overgrown kid rolls across my mind.
"In lots of three. So it's a pretty large collection."
Why does size matter with tinkertoys?
"Why does he collect in lots of three?"
"Well, there's one car he buys for himself. And there's one car he buys for our only nephew in the family. And then he buys one for his unborn son."
"What unborn son? Didn't you tell me he's single? Has been for years?"
"Yeah. But he wants a kid really bad, he has a gut feeling it'll be a son, so he's collecting for him too."
Feeling like a brood mare, I start to shake as we pull up to the house. Looks great from the outside. We ring the doorbell and it takes a long while for Brother Dearest to come greet us.
He looks like a nice guy. Normal even. But his entire, HUGE house is covered in toy cars. There's a tiny trail of carpet you can walk through the house on, like the yellow brick road.
I'm stunned speechless. Each car is precisely placed and positioned at interesting angles everywhere, hundreds of thousands. A picture hanging on the wall has cars displayed on top of the frame. A light picture hanging from the ceiling has cars on it. There's tons of display cases featuring the toys. Both men are pointing out each car's "special" feature to me, eyes lit up and drool hanging from their chins.
I'm a girl. I can point out individual shades of eyeshadow with varying shades and nuances. Show me a toy car and my eyes glaze over.
Three hours later we get to Brother's bedroom. Very cool decor, Japanese-style. But on the floor-bed is a tiny area where Brother sleeps stiffly in the middle so as to NOT DISTURB THE CARS POSED ALL AROUND THE MATTRESS.
My tiny touch of OCD is kicking in now. I'm pulling the collar from my throat, gasping for air. Trying to get away, but tiny cars are stuck under my feet. I make it back out to the truck before I succumb to the urge to throw up, and Joe follows me stiffly. We jump into the car and head home.
I'm leaning back, eyes closed. Joe asks proudly, "Well, what'd ya think? Is his collection cool or what? I can't believe that guy's still single."
I open one eye and look at him, just to make sure.
Joe's serious.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Online Dating

Tonight was the “join Chemistry for free” weekend. I took the test, which was kind of interesting. My test results were Negotiator:

You are interested in the big picture. You see holistically and can be visionary. You are friendly and humane. You have a big heart; you tend to trust people and sympathize with them easily. You intuitively know what they are thinking and feeling. And because you are agreeable and mentally flexible, you go out of your way to make others comfortable and happy. You seek to make intimate, meaningful friendships.
Your empathy and altruism spill over into a desire to make the world a better place. And with your resilience and imagination, your ability to do many things at the same time, your people skills and your command of language, you can be remarkably effective at improving the lives of others.
You are also traditional. You have clear moral values and tend to stick to your point of view. Yet you almost always seek consensus and harmony, and are willing to give up some of your pleasures to build an orderly, harmonious home and family life.

And then we follow with three warnings:
1. But because you can see so many angles to an issue or decision, you can be indecisive.
2. Your need to please can make you placating and your trusting nature can make you gullible.
3. When you feel betrayed you can be unforgiving and hold a grudge too long.

Good call on my personality. I definitely decide this ride could be worth it. If they can pinpoint me better than a horoscope, they can do so with everyone else that joins. But interesting enough, my match of negotiator has been paired with every other type out there. So it begs the question...what was the point of personality types again? Definitely not my first contact...

I am man that needs a woman that injoys having fun. I am active and injoy movies and good food and a woman that injoys the same. I also want a woman that injoys staying in and having fun with one another. I also work in a field that takes alot of my time so I need a strong woman that injoy the time we have and not wast it life is to short.
Hello?! Typos, people! He used the word injoys (so apparently it's not just a typo, but a bigger eek- misspelling) FIVE times and the word woman FOUR times, like a caveman insisting she have a ponytail to drag her around. Does anyone else get the impression that he has his own agenda and wants a woman to jump when he snaps? Because a strong woman certainly wouldn't have her own life...she would understand his precious life is short. Hell, depending on how strong she really is, she might help with the shortening. I hear belladonna works. Just saying.

Rather than let my author mind wander again with the tragic story of his poisoning, I simply hit the delete key. Scrolling through my next matches were photo-less choices. Four more times I hit delete before my child noticed the repetitive tapping. “Hey, that's shallow. You're acting like a man.”

I blink innocently. Really? Moi? “You think I should give hideously ugly, cowardly men who aren't even brave enough to post a picture a chance?”

“Well, if they have kids,” she says slyly, scrolling down to read a profile of one with three tiny tots.
Ugh, the picture of the caveman comes to mind, dumping off his brats on me while he goes out with the guys, then stops home for a little bit of me flat on my back quality time because his life's so short time.

“They might be demon seeds,” I warn her.

Apparently my child is a negotiator also, for her answer rolls off her tongue. “If we catch 'em young enough, they're convertible.”

The next profile has a picture. We both give a shocked gasp. The poor fella is a redhead, not the outdoorsy type though. The sickly, wan, never seen the sun type of redhead. Yet, he attempted a little tan for the photo, which just earns him a sunburn on the tip of his bulbous nose. He sports a goatee, which appears thin because it grows blond. Sometimes, a man wears facial hair as a replacement for the lack on top his head. I look higher.

Bingo. His red hair is curly and he grows the locks longer on top of his head, as if disguising the fact that it's long past the thinning stage. But all he really managed to do was change his appearance to that of Bozo the Clown.

Now, I'm open minded. But I can't imagine waking up to Bozo each morning. Nor can I imagine humping Bozo.

I hit delete.

“Wait!” My child screams. “Check the kids! We could have cute, redheaded stepchildren!”

“Shiiit. Too late,” I drawl, as if I really cared. “Oops, mommy didn't say shit.”

“Yes, you did.”

“Did not,” I argue back.

Then I read the Chemistry directions, inwardly wincing. One of my faults, plunging in and doing things all wrong...

Deleting your matches results in more matches produced the next day. Oh, bravo!

Looking forward to Day Two, now that I've weeded out the clowns and the cavemen.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Caterpillars

Christmas Eve at Patty's house. It should have been mild, we were just going to grill steaks and have wine. with false eyelashes. The latest rage. I drape one across Patty's left eye.
And stare in shock.
It looks pretty damn good on her. No trimming necessary, it transforms her face into instant glamor queen. Who knew?
“Wow,” I tell her. You need to go look in the mirror.”
She eyes my wine glass suspiciously, as if it's the reason why she looks good. But the wine is only half gone. I smile condescendingly. How dare she even think I may be a lightweight?
While she's in the bathroom, I slap a couple of the lashes on me, using the wineglass for my reflection.
“You're right,” Patty says, coming back out. “It does look pretty good. Damn, I'm a hottie.”
I blink rapidly at her, fluttering the lace on my eyelid so she'll notice.
Just then Corky walks in.
Patty and I eye each other, panic-stricken. Because Corky's the bartender from hell. Oh, not that his drinks are bad. Just the opposite. They're deliciously dangerous. Irresistibly innocent. But you have to pay for them.
With your soul.
“Distract him,” Patty whispers.
“Cork, uhhh, wanna dance?”
The country song that's playing is old...and slow. He looks at me like I'm crazy. Patty's looking at me like I'm crazy. I shrug. It was the best I could do on such short notice.
“Nah,” Corky says, ignoring our elegant eyelashes and looking into our wineglasses instead. “I think I'm gonna try a new drink recipe I heard about. It's called an Orgasm.”
Patty's eyes narrow so far, I think her lids have swallowed her lashes. “What's in it?”
“Well, I don't know exactly...”
There's the kicker. The “exactly” part is where Corky whips the rug out from under us. Exactly could mean seven different liquors. And seven different experiments to get the recipe perfected.
“I know there's milk. And Triple Sec. Maybe a drop or two of Amaretto. Chocolate vodka.”
Patty whispers. “Sounds harmless, dearie.”
By now, Corky brings our first round of shots. They're smooth, tasty. I lick the shot glass clean.
“Not quite right,” he announces. “I'm gonna try it over again.”
Patty and I shrug, and then she flutters her lashes at me. “Let's dance.”
First clue of Drunkland should be two women country dancing together and neither one knowing who should lead. “This is the three-step,” she says. There's a two-step, I know. But sure enough, she's counting out three steps.
“Here, have some Tuaca to chase down the last recipe. I don't want you to mar the tastes between the old recipe and the new,” Corky says, like the purpose of Tuaca is a sliver of ginger between sushi rounds.
The rest of the night is a blur. Except for the part where I was teaching Patty how to the country music. I vaguely remember that one.
“I got... four sons,” Patty announces, her voice so slurred I think she was mentally counting them.
“I know,” I say, surprised that my voice is slurred too. “Dusty and Dirky, Sleepy and Doc. Oh, wait. That can't be right, one is named after a beer. But anyway, think of the danger! It might work out with one of them and then I'd have to call you mom.”
The next thing I remember is waking up in bed. Sunlight is streaming in the windows. I haven't yet opened my eyes, I can just see the color of the sun's rays through closed lids.
I remember putting on her pajamas. I remember hanging one foot out of the bed to touch the floor to stop the bedspins from taunting me.
But being a paranormal author, I remember snaking my foot back under the covers, in case something grabbed my ankle from under the bed.
Was there anything I might have forgotten in my drunken state? My clothes should be in my purse. I always have a strange habit of finding clothes in there...once even two pair of shoes. That one still boggles me.
Slowly I open one eye. Panic grips my gut, curling its fingers around my intestines. My heart thunders, nearly splitting my ribcage apart. I lay perfectly still, afraid to scream, afraid to move.
For a giant, hairy, poisonous caterpillar lays across my eyelid.
No, wait a minute. There are two fat ones on each eye. Some of the panic starts to ebb away.
But then I hear a blood-curdling scream from down the hallway. I race down, just in time to see Patty sitting up in bed, spiky hair jutting straight up.
A thick caterpillar across her cheek.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Erotica Writer's Conference

Really? I'm just blogging about RomantiCon? It was in October...the beginning. It's now November...the end.
Better late than never. But back to Romanticon:
As always, a huge smashing success. For authors, the bar is where we always seem to congregate. Helen Hardt and I sat right up front, since the tables were taken by the usual erotica tramps. I feel I have the right to call them that; while they may be friends, they took the tables first.
I snapped at the bartender. “I'd like a Tight Snatch, please.”
Helen fluttered her lashes. “Flirtini for me.”
We giggled, but neither was going to admit to the other we just like to say the names. This year there were three young men sitting up there, though not from our conference. Very young, you could tell by the way they nudged each other at our drinks, looking all excited and flushed. One had his ID sitting on the bar, waiting to proudly show he was legal.
Mari Freeman, red-headed vixen, went over to whisper in the youngest child's ear about all she could teach him in Cougar-ville. His eyes looked ready to bug out.
Tonight I'll buy her a drink. Scratch that, cause she's really interesting, especially when she drinks. A shot. I'll spare no expense to rile her up.
But then the oldest of the group of three boys, all twenty-nine tender years of lickable age, (I know, he told me so) passed me a note. HUH? I haven't been passed a note since twelfth grade.
“Your cute.”
Helen leaned over my shoulder. “He spelled 'your' wrong.”
“Quit editing my love note,” I snapped. Jealous bitch. I would have shared my lovebug.
She shrugged, looking disgusted. “He should at least learn to spell if he's going to hit on an author.”
The kid was busy rambling through all this. Busy leaving enticing little comments about how interesting his life was. Never noticing Helen and I carried on a conversation at the same time he babbled. He was a stuntman. Big pause. Apparently I wasn't quick enough to ask more. He let another tidbit out. Dirt bikes.
I stifled a yawn.
In big demand.
My mind wandered. An innocent-looking author walked up. Her long blond hair was smooth and straight like...a virgin. A schoolgirl. Like Darla on Buffy.
“Hello, again, Heather,” said Hel. “Do you know my friend Rena?”
I said hi. I had seen her around in a couple classes. She sat in the barstool next to us, blessedly blocking the view of the stuntkid. “So what kind of stuff do you write?” I asked.
Of course, there are several different genres. Even if we are all erotic.
She blushed. “Oh, I write really mild stuff.”
Of course. She looked like my teenage daughter. I smiled condescendingly. “Like what, sugar?”
“Light stuff. A little menage. Some ginger figging.”
I blink, then smooth over my features in case confusion crept across when I was unaware...
“Oooh, interesting! I haven't written that yet.” Helen coos. Damn, Hel knows what it is? There's no way I'm asking now. So I smile too. If they want to assume I'm be it.
“Love gingersnapping,” I say.
Helen clears her throat. The blond looks confused. I grunt. She is blond, even if she is all sweet and innocent. Probably had a space out moment. Then a beatific smile crosses her sweet, pretty face and she wanders down the bar to visit others.
Hel leans in. “So by the way, what is it?”
Surprise slams into me. Helen is the most up-to-date woman I know. “You don't know? I thought for sure you knew.”
“Not a clue. But I wasn't about to admit it. She's so sweet and innocent looking and maybe she does it.”
Oooh. I didn't think about that.
“Okay, I don't know either.”
Now it's Hel's turn to look surprised. “You don't? I thought for sure you would.”
For a second I'm flattered. Then I frown when it sinks in. “Huh?”
“Well, now I'm curious. I'll have to google,” she announces.
“Yeah," I agree.
She pulls out her laptop and fires up.
Another author, Lena Matthews, wanders up. “What are you two doing?”
“Googling gingersnapping.”
“Figging,” Hel says dryly.
“That's what I meant to say,” I said, like I knew the term all along. Cause for sure, wicked, come-hither-and-spank-me Lena knows.
“Hmmm,” Lena says. “What's that?”
“You don't know either?” Helen asks. “Well, what the hell is wrong with us? The innocent blond knows enough to write about it...and the naughty-looking ones don' it comes...oh...ok. You peel a ginger root, take a few slivers and insert...ouch...anally. It's a pleasure-pain kind of burn during sex...”
Lena sat a few inches taller, like we're not gonna notice she just clenched her butt cheeks tightly.
“Ow. See, you gotta watch the innocent-looking ones,” she says. “The ones who drink the fruity drinks. They're just baaad.”
“Yeah,” we agree in unison. “Floozies.”
All three of us lean in to slurp out of our lovely drinks, moving aside the fruit twisted onto the dangerous-looking toothpicks.