Saturday, October 09, 2010

Ah, fall. The Giants are kicking baseballbutt (go Giants!). Halloween decorations abound and I have an excuse to accidentally eat two peanut butter cups. And the countdown has already begun for NaNoWriMo.

Last year I started a book with the deliriously bad title of Anton Schickler Sings Bad Songs of a German Childhood. I am still in love in love with title. It went no where, which was helped by my flu. So I started but didn't finish. Husband, however, being a stud not only wrong a book in a month, but he wrote a damned good one. He published it through Blurb and sold about 50 copies. Mostly to friends but a few times to total strangers (with good taste).

So we're coming up on 2010 NaNoWriMo and I am already panicking. No idea. None. Not a clue. No setting. No characters. No genre. Not even the merest hint of an idea. Should be fun.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Now With Platypus Liver!

I find cosmetics marketing hilarious.

First off, I don't really understand it. Aside from an insane high school addiction to root beer lip gloss I've never worn make up. The only so-called beauty product I buy is moisturizer.

But most women wear cosmetics and advertising it is a huge market. But what gets me is when they suddenly announce that an ingredient you never heard of or never knew would make you beautiful is suddenly touted in TV ads.

Now with Platypus Liver! They'll proclaim. Really? Who knew platypus liver was good for you? The big thing seems to be random oil. New Like Me Mascara enriches your lashes with Aspidistra Oil. What the heck is aspidistra oil when it's at home?

Men's products don't seem to suffer from the same problem. You never see an ad for shaving cream that's now made with trout scales or oak cream.

And since I'm on a rant (and when am I not?) what is it with too many made-up flavors. Nothing is chocolate anymore. It's Belgian Chocolate Creme Originale. Vanilla Bean Tahitian. There's always one weird geographic reference, I suppose to make it more cosmopolitan. But it's too much. Canadian Caramel Dream is not a flavor. It's a stripper.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

The Genius that was William Topz McGongall

If you are unfamiliar with the poetic oeuvre of Mr. McGonagall then you are in for a delight. Billed as "McGonagall the Prince of Dioggerell: and "The Worst Poet in the English Language" the poor man more than lived up to his name. This 19th century hack was firmly convinced of his Divine Talent and his duty to his Muse. He had no sense of humor regarding his work. At one point he wrote with great seriousness that while reciting his verses, people began throwing peas at him. And when you read his works, you really ca't blame them. His favorite subjects were train disasters, burials of famous peoples, bridge crashes, fires, and various other lyrical calamaties. Here I give you but a sample of the magic that was William McConagall's "talent":

The Late Sir John Ogilvy

Alas! Sir John Ogilby is dead, aged eighty=seven
But I hop his soul his now is heaven;
For he was a generous-hearted gentleman I am sure
And in particular, ery kind unto the poor

He was a Christian gentlemen in every degree
And, for many a years, was an M.P. for Bonnie Dundee,
And while he was an M.P. he didn't neglect
To advocate the rights of Dundee in every respect

He was a public benefactor in man way,s
especially in erecting an asylum for imbecile children to spend their days
Then he handed the institution over as free
As a free gift and boon to the people of Dundee

He was chairman gentlemen in his time,
and he now lies buried in the family vault in Strathmartine
but I hope his sould has gone alonft where all troubles cease
amonsgt the blessed saits where all is joy and peace

to the peple around Baldovan he will be a great loss,
because he was a kind hearted man and a Solder of the Cross
He had always a kind word for every one he met
And the loss of such a good man will be felt with deep regret

Because such men as Sir John Ogilvy are hard to be found,
Especially in Christian charity his large heart did abound
Therefore a monumentshould be erected for him most handsome to behold
And his good deeds engraven thereon in letters of gold