Thursday, December 27, 2012

A line of lit: Airplane style

"There's no reason to become alarmed, and we hope you'll enjoy the rest
of your flight. By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to
fly a plane? "



- Airplane, 1980

Friday, December 21, 2012

She is Mom

Happy BIRTHDAY!

A few years ago, as her Mother's Day present, I wrote a magazine article about my mom that ran as a two-page spread on Mother's Day. For months, women would come up to me and tear up while telling me how much that reminded them of their mother, their relationship. It was a great honor to write it but a greater honor to be the daughter of such an amazing Mom so that I could write it.

So, because I just want to gush over her a bit, here's the article text. And, Mom, just for you, thank you. A thousand times. For ten thousand different things. You've got the hardest job in the world, and I've never seen anyone as soft, while equally tough, as you do this job better. When I grow up, I want to be just like you.

So much love,
your grateful daughter.


Just Like Your Mother


I don't remember the first time we met. First impressions are important, but I was somewhat preoccupied at the time recovering from birth and all. There was this whole wide world out there to see, food to taste, air to breathe, crying to do, sleep to be had, fingers to discover. It wasn't a good time to remember meeting someone, not even someone as significant as my mother.
But every year on my birthday, she recalls that fateful morning, "I started having labor pains at 2 am..." and that's where our story begins.
We went through a rough first couple of years - her trying to figure me out, me doing the same. She did most of the talking. I just sort of blinked, mumbling odd noises from time to time.
Eventually, we figured out a mother-daughter language and have been speaking it ever since.
When people ask me about my mother, I usually elevate my voice level to this slightly higher pitched, wispy tone where I give my impression of her saying, "Well, hello there and how are you? Isn't this a wonderful day? Isn't life just marvelous? Is there anything I can do for you?" I make her sound very innocent, very loving, and, as she has pointed out, rather stupid.
She is not, nor could ever be surmised, as lacking in intelligence. She's a voracious reader, theological addict, knows every move in the national political arena before George W. does, a woman's bible study leader, recreates heaven with a non-stick frying pan and flour, loves the outdoors and all things green, can turn chaos into comfort, and makes a room more like home just by walking into it. And she does everything with a smile and pleasant attitude.
She is Mom.
She is this mystic creature that can handle all things great and small. She knows when to hug me, when to simply listen, when to smooth the hair from my face and pat my arm, when I need to hear laughter, when to call, and what to say to always make me stop, make me think, make me evolve into someone a little deeper, a little kinder, a little more capable of being called her daughter. She is wonderful.
There are few magical memories of my childhood that did not revolve around my mother. She made things happen: You want to create? Let's make play dough. You want to paint? I have it all ready. You want to turn the living room into the planet Nooron where aliens resembling fuzzy bunnies live? Clean it up after you've landed back on earth.
Days with her were timeless lessons of morality and judgment, all taught in the classroom of her kitchen while rolling pie crust or snapping green beans. To me, she seemed to know everything and explained it all in my language. At the time, I thought I was speaking on her level. Eventually, I learned she was speaking on mine.
When the teenage years came, I learned a few inarguables:
First, never talk back to mother. She has a third arm hidden for just such occasions. She medaled in backhanding, winning the Tour de yur Face.
Second, you can't make it out the door before she comments on your clothes and hair. Forget arguing. It's a waste of breath. Just pull your skirt down, your hair back, and that sour expression off your face.
Third, no one cares about your broken heart more than Mom. She's never too busy or too tired to mend your hurting. Keep her up all night crying. She'll make your favorite breakfast the next morning.
I spent my childhood trying to hurry up and outgrow her, be my own woman, be different than her while being just like her. As an adult, I finally get it. I'll never be her. I couldn't on my best days. She is Mom and there is no comparison.
Instead, I admire her, how she can touch anyone with just a soft expression, how people gravitate to her for comfort, how she gives of herself without pity or complaint, how her mashed potatoes are always creamy. She has taught me a few things in life, none more important than honest devotion to my Savior. And then she leads by example.
So for my mother and all other mothers keeping us in awe and wonder at the richness of your heart, Happy Mother's Day. You helped us dream big. 


Thanks Mom. I just love the fact that you are you. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

This is why I do the things I do.



On ExpertsColumn.com I'm $0.78 from making ten dollars since January (:
Thanks for all your help from the beginning you have made me a better writer and I still have MUCH to learn.




Allie, 7th Grader


a student from my 2011 Youth Writer's Camp

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

LightQuest's "Thought Particles" project






Monday, July 9, 2012

Teri Aulph web project

Beautiful. Brilliant. Teri.






Work? What work?

I LOVE brainstorming sessions with brilliant creatives (aka KortneyKDesigns) that start with
singing jingles about bologna and end with crying over Proctor and
Gamble commercials.





Quote Them: don't ink

I bought a seven-dollar pen because I always lose pens and I got sick of not caring.


Mitch Hedberg

Monday, June 25, 2012

Fox picks up Oscars article





I'll call this an oldie but a goodie since it happened back in February, and I forgot to post it. Forgot your ghostwritten article got picked up by Fox Business, you say?



Yeah. I know. This is why I don't have plants.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Quote Them: a fabulous faker

It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I
couldn't give it up, because by that time I was too famous.


Robert Benchley


Monday, June 11, 2012

Quote Them: money by any other name

Money won't buy happiness, but it will pay the salaries of a large research staff to study the problem.


Bill Vaughan

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A line of literature: Bradbury style

“We need not to be let alone. We need to be really bothered once in a
while. How long is it since you were really bothered? About something
important, about something real?”


― Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Squishy gender roles



The
 man opened my door and then explained his actions in case it caused
offense. It's come to this? Sadness. So in celebration of being wildly
independent, as well as 100% female and grateful to be treated as such,
I've decided to swoon periodically in public. 




This I do for all
womankind.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Thursday, May 3, 2012

VIDEO: Soldiers Deck of Cards

He's Justin Flom - magician, card trickery person, entertainer, and inspirational storyteller. Now you see him, now you......nope. Still see him. I never said he'd disappeared.

VIDEO: Project Dome Piece Teaser

An idea. A camera. A mermaid with a harp. It's backyard art in Tulsa with a great soundtrack.



This is a group of friends who love to bike. And paint. Also, they seem to enjoy women in costume. But it works. You hang on through the four minutes with the thrill of evolution. It lasted three days and ended with hundreds stopping by to see what was stirring the air. That's creativity.

So create, my friends. Create anywhere you can. In the most positive way. In color and exuberance. With a light heart and a heavy focus. Also, a live harp player helps.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Birds Again.

I'm writing a sequel to Hitchcock's The Birds. The protagonist is a
blonde female who stalks birds, instead of men, and owns a .22 cal
pellet gun. Tagline: Her turn.






Tuesday, May 1, 2012

You sucked. Isn't it great?

This day is dedicated to all the bosses who drove their employees to
start their own businesses, which stimulates the economy and provides
all of us with unique services and products. You were horrible! And we
thank you.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Is your dream marketable?

"I'm a writer," I told him. He asked; I answered. Then came the
inevitable did-I-hear-that-right expression. "And you get a paycheck for
 that?" he asked. "Nah," I said, "I just live on the land, foraging for
wild berries and sleeping in trees." In between fishing streams with my
feet, I do things like this.


Friday, April 20, 2012

The Feel Good Folder

It was for bad days. The flamboyantly bad ones. Black and bloody and bruised purply ones.



Not, I-got-a-spot-of-coffee-on-my-pant-leg bad days. Not even, someone-cut-me-off-in-traffic bad days. We're talking stellar bad. Rock-n-rollin' bad. Days you wished you'd gone into a career of shoveling ditches in the Arabian peninsula. 



Years ago, a beloved editor of mine taught me the virtue of a business compliment. She showed me her "atta girl" stash of cards and emails and letters. Each of them collected over her career. Each thanking her for an excellent job. Each sincere and dogeared.



"This is my Feel Good Folder," she told me one day, one vibrantly punk day, when we were both wondering about switching jobs from journalists to janitors. "Any kind of compliment, anything kind, it goes in here. Then I take it out and read it on days like this."



Though cards age, sentiment is timeless. A heartfelt "thank you" has the eternal shelf life of canned meat. Should nuclear annihilation come, the humans who rise from the ashes centuries later will still be able to fatten themselves on the potato protein and hydrolyzed soy of Vienna Sausages manufactured in the 80s.



Now that's timeless.

That's the Feel Good Folder.



Today, I discovered a lost recommendation from 2009 that is going inside my Feel Good Folder:


"I have a reputation as a 'tough sell' as, more often than not, I decline recommendation letter requests. Tara has never requested a recommendation letter from me. I sought out this opportunity. Tara is, in my opinion, a national treasure: integrity, creativity, humility, decency, personal skills, DIALECTIC INTELLECT!!!! .... Need I say more? I give Tara my HIGHEST recommendation. Call if you have questions (918) *** - ****." 

Booyah. Yummy to my tummy. I needed that. It tasted great and was less filling.



My suggestion? If you don't have a Feel Good Folder, you'll feel good about starting one. You'll feel even gooder about starting one for your employees. Keep it next to their personnel files and yank it out when they've locked themselves in the VIP bathroom. 



Slaps on the back work. Both to motivate and to dislodged processed meat.




Wednesday, April 18, 2012

VIDEO: Birth of a Book

Never become so dulled with technology that you forget the artistry. 




Thursday, April 5, 2012

Quote them: Moonlighting mayhem

I love entertaining/odd/screwball writing wherever I find it. Even if it's in the 80s.



From one of the squiggliest scripts in the big-hair era of TV, I give you....Moonlighting:








Security Officer:
I'm sorry, but you're not on the guest list.


David Addison:
That's because we're not guests. We're looking for a man with a mole on his nose.


Security Officer:
A mole on his nose?


Maddie Hayes:
A mole on his nose.


Security Officer:
[to Maddie] What kind of clothes?


Maddie Hayes:
[to David] What kind of clothes?


David Addison:
What kind of clothes do you suppose?


Security Officer:
What kind of clothes do I suppose would be worn by a man with a mole on his nose? Who knows?


David Addison:
Did I happen to mention, did I bother to disclose, that this man that
we're seeking with the mole on his nose? I'm not sure of his clothes or
anything else, except he's Chinese, a big clue by itself.


Maddie Hayes:
How do you do that?


David Addison:
Gotta read a lot of Dr. Seuss.


Security Officer:
I'm sorry to say, I'm sad to report, I haven't seen anyone at all of
that sort. Not a man who's Chinese with a mole on his nose with some
kind of clothes that you can't suppose. So get away from this door and
get out of this place, or I'll have to hurt you - put my foot in your
face. 



I think of this show. Then I think of pretty much anything on the WB. Then I think of this show. Any questions?

Friday, March 30, 2012

Katy Perry VIDEO: Semper Fi

A man cheats on his woman. A woman joins the Marines. Now that's a great music video.



My Top 10 Reasons for Loving this Music Video:

1. Naomi Wolf hates it. Is demanding a boycott of Katy Perry. That, in itself, is a great reason to watch this video.

2. Instead of watching close-ups of Katy Perry's mouth, face, legs, or any other various body part gyrate to music, we were given a story.

3. Women were being celebrated, not for their sexuality, but for their determination.

4. It gave a positive female response to a negative male problem. Instead of attacking his car with a baseball bat and proving her own petty weakness, she focused on finding out what she was capable of accomplishing without him.

5. I really like camo.


Dana Loesh at Big Hollywood accurately tips a hat to the "kick-assedness" of this video. I give that kick-assedness a definite curtsy.





Thursday, March 1, 2012

Rush: Breitbart the "Bulldog"

Crowder: Remembering Breitbart



Words are so frequently useless. As a writer, these are the moments I hate. As a human, too.

Breitbart's War



Andrew Breitbart talked fast. Exceptionally fast. His words compounded like layers in a hoagie sandwich. Any one speech, one book, one project, one interview, one soundbite was meaty enough to feed a family of five.

For life.

But somehow he always had more in him. More to say. More poignancy and relevancy and guts and all of it slathered with wasabi. His words could clear the sinuses right up.

This is what I thought about in 2008 when I had the chance to interview him. He was sitting somewhere backstage of the Republican National Convention, somewhere with lots of noise and people and questions being barked in the background - an atmosphere that followed him everywhere, it seemed.

He took my call without breaking a single stride. What did I want to know? He was ready to talk. Always, it appeared, ready to talk. Primed to fire off eloquence with rapidity, and then follow it up with a quick jab of cutthroat crudeness.

All together, his points were made. Each of them wedged into the moist areas of your brain so that you never forgot them.

 That's what I realized during our interview. That, and the fact he spoke faster than I could record in my wayward shorthand. He had so much to say. So very much. It was a terrible shame to lose even one word.

Sadly, I never got the chance to speak to him again. It was a shotgun kind of crossing. Lots of noise loading, lots of noise when fired. Job done. So I've admired his fighting stance from a distance. He had zeal when so very few do.

People keep calling him a warrior. I can think of no better term. He was schooling the rest of us on how to fight. Then walking into the battlefield, waving his hands wildly so the enemy would put him in the crosshairs, and screaming, "FIGHT THEM LIKE THIS!"

He never wavered, never backed down. It was a fearless, in-your-face technique with such courage that he often made me wonder if, somehow, he could see the end of the war already. As if he knew the devastation coming if conservatives didn't give it their all.

So he led by example.
That's what leaders do.

 Near the end of my interview, Breitbart began talking about American exceptionalism, about the loss of Americanism in American films, about the overtaking of Hollywood with foreign money and foreign influence. He spoke like a Colonel eying a map of the battlefield and marking off the territory lost and the territory still left to defend.

"A lot of Hollywood actors and Hollywood writers and directors are starting to ask," he said, in his notable juicy speech, "did we give it all away?"

If they did, Breitbart was determined to get every inch back. And the battle isn't even close to over.

Rest in peace, Andrew. Our warrior.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Now THIS is an apology

I'm sorry. I'm so, so sorry that this woman isn't running for office. Yet?
Found her! She's Kira Davis. And we're going to be BFFs.

Monday, February 6, 2012

VIDEO: Two Visions of America

One pinches my heart. The other makes me pinch my nose. 



Yes, why shouldn't we believe that? Happy 101st Birthday, Mr. President! Here's to a revitalization of independence, of individual empowerment, of hope, and always, always, of freedom.

Friday, February 3, 2012

PIC: Santorum "tebowing"....

....with supporters.



Neighbor, how long has it been since you had a cool, conservative, conscientious man as President? Well, that's too long!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

VIDEO: Bill Murray. The funny one.

Because it's....well, you know what day it is.

"I'm just trying to talk like normal people talk. Isn't this how they talk?"




Wednesday, February 1, 2012

VIDEO: spOILed

I'm all about keeping things natural. I eat unprocessed food, I wear all-natural fabrics, and I burn fossil fuels as if they burst forth from the very ground beneath my feet. 

Oh. That's right. They do.

A new documentary is explaining a facet of our lives most of us don't fully understand: where the energy comes from. No one else is saying it. How do I know? Because they want him to stop saying it, too. 

Meet Mark Mathis. And meet Mark Mathis' project, "spOILed."



If “SpOILed” debunks just one media meme, Mathis hopes it’s the notion that we can move away from oil in the near future.
If only that were the case.

“That’s a profoundly ignorant and dangerous statement,” he says. “It is impossible for that to happen. I fully expect 40 years from now we may be even more dependent on oil then we are today.”

Want to know more? Of course you do.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Quote Them: Zing!

“You didn’t hear much talk about the success of his Administration—and that’s because there isn’t much."
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio,
concerning President Obama's SOTU address


Time for another tarmac confrontation.

VIDEO: Debt limit made simple. And funny. And freaky.

What if you, as in you, were making the same spending/buying/saving decisions as the federal government? Imagine the mess the feds are leaving you. As in you



I'm not paying that off that debt. No way. Oh, but I am. As in me.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Quote Them: Because "stuff" happens

"On Tuesday at the State of the Union, I laid out my vision for how we move forward. I laid out a blueprint for an economy that's built to last, that has a firm foundation. Where we're making stuff and selling stuff and moving it around and UPS drivers are dropping things off everywhere."

President Obama,
during campaign event in Las Vegas, Nevada this week 


The complex made stupid simple. Why does Obama's description of the economy sound a lot like Santa's workshop? Or a lemonade stand?



Thursday, January 26, 2012

Trailer VIDEO: Monumental

Hmmm....


During a youth writing class last summer, a very talented, and equally stubborn, 13-year-old argued her case against history. Specifically, she argued a visit to a museum I had scheduled to take my class that afternoon.

Her arguments?
It's boring.
It isn't interactive.
No entertainment value.

We debated the validity of her claims (I asked her if she believed the bombing of Pearl Harbor was a rather dull story, or if there was simply nothing stirring about Titanic - both major motion pictures). Eventually, she relented to go, especially after I asked her if movies, those great bastions of education, where interactive. And, if so, how theater management felt about her running her hands all over the projector screen.

"You're saying I need to learn to like it," she said.
"I'm saying you've never really experienced it," I answered.

When we arrived, I challenged her to absorb the stories around her. To use it to build upon her writing. To take it in and make it part of who she was, who she would be. To recognize the priceless worth of the stories being told. 

When we left, she pulled me aside, her eyes wonderfully overwhelmed. "I never saw history like that before," she said. "I just never saw it. I'll never look at a museum the same again."

That, my friends, is getting a sweet drip of history on the tongue. And realizing it's far sweeter than imagined.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

99 Ways to Improve Your Thinking



To think better, or even at all, Eddie Morra took a pill.

It worked. Sort of. In Limitless, Morra's skills in critical thinking, observation and problem solving increased, as did his overall troubles. For a chemically-enhanced smart guy, he was mournfully clueless.

So that's one option. Pharmaceuticals. Make sure you read the warning label.

Or, there's one possibility your liver will sit up and kiss you for, as creepy as that might be. And that's creative writing. 

It's great for witty Facebook posts, snazzy Tweets, and that dusty unfinished novel. What many don't realize is that it is also an unheralded, even hushed, protein-serum for the brain. In fact, The University of Georgia now requires all students to pass two Critical Thinking through Writing courses to obtain their bachelor's degree. No matter the major.

What do they know that the public doesn't?

That creative writing is the simplest, surest, as a writer I must also say the most entertaining, technique for critical thinking. It's like Jazzercize for the mind. Or, if you're partial to the Latin culture, Zumba.

During my 99 Ways to Improve Your Creative Writing class, you'll learn how to shake up your mental lags, to razor-wire your observations, to rocket yourself to a new terrain, to see things no one else does, while also discovering an arsenal you didn't know you possessed and the ability to shoot with precision.

Each Thursday night in February, we'll spend two hours learning these techniques and creative writing boons. You'll realize that fresh ideas aren't only for the few creatives in the world. They are available to all.

It starts with learning the technique to step outside of your thinking limitations. Strike that. There are no thinking limitations. With creative writing techniques, you can be limitless.

Enroll now! The class closes in a few days. Contact TCC, 918.595.7200.











Wednesday, January 11, 2012

180. The movie making people U-turn.


I stumbled onto this. Twitter is an amazing little site. Not one I visit often. But in there, if you are looking in the right places, you might find a few treasures. This was one of them, posted on David Barton's wall.

So, out of curiosity to learn about this half hour movie he promoted, I clicked the tiny URL...with no intention of watching the full half hour.

I watched the full half hour. So did over two million others, so far. You will, too.

It's simply that good. And not what you think. But I'll let you discover it for yourself, if you choose. Enjoy. And prepare your ideas for the yoga they are about to endure.

Watch it here or on the 180 site




Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Nothing but Love for Mia

She's pure conservative heroin. Mia Love is running for the newly opened Congressional district in Utah. Since I can't vote for her, not being a resident of Utah and all, instead I'm going to write her a letter everyday until she concedes to being my friend.

Good idea? Bad idea?



Yes! Watching this video gives me a crick in my neck from nodding my head in agreement. This is everything that conservatives are: Hard working. Positive. Responsible. Giving. Achieving. Fighting. Independent. Admirable. On and on, this girl has definitely won my patriotic heart.

These are the role models girls should be following. These are the representatives we should be electing.

Good luck Mia! Expect me to make a nuisance of myself soon.