Saturday, March 31, 2007

For a Totally Great, Fun Time, Check out this Author's Website!

I've been laughing ever since I found this!

Here's a sample very close to my heart (as a fellow reclusive, shy writer)!

Thank you for reprint permission, Saralee!

Party, Pluck and Pins to Prop Me Up

By: Saralee Perel

All I wanted to do was write articles for a new local magazine. I didn't want to actually meet anybody. But one day, it came in the mail. An invitation to their publication party. "How do I get out of this?" I internally screamed, already in full panic mode.

I had nothing to wear. I don't get out much. The straps on the one bra I own are so stretched out that family members compare me to Grandma - whose bosoms ended up around her waist. My belly serves as a sturdy shelf for mine.

I flailed through my closet. Half the things were Woodstock-fringed and beaded. "What's in style?" I asked my husband, Bob.

He picked up a tie-dyed tunic with the words "Peace, Love And Rock and Roll" on it. "Not this," he said.

I went to Kmart for a new bra. I tried several on, over my tee shirt before someone said, "They've invented dressing rooms." Miracle bras, wonder bras, sports, strapless, push-ups. Too many choices. I scrapped my quest. Instead, I safety-pinned the straps on my old bra so I'd be up where I'm supposed to be when I'm out in public.

The night of the party, Bob pushed me out of the car, in front of the fancy restaurant. I opened the restaurant door, changed my mind and headed back. He made - scoot, go on now - motions with his hands. I went in. He had been invited too but had to go to the bank first.

I was an anxious wreck. The magazine is very elegant. The editors are mature and sophisticated, yet somehow they let me write for them.

The publisher greeted me graciously, then asked, "Where's Bob?"


"Your husband."

"Yes, of course. That's right. He is."

She looked baffled. "Isn't he coming?"

"He's at the bank. We have money in there. And . . . we need money . . . where they have it . . . there."

I darted out to the phone and put in a dime. Nothing happened. Finally, I put enough money in to make it work. Again, I don't get out much.

"What's wrong?" Bob asked from his cell.

"Nothing. Could you hurry?"

I hadn't worn earrings in ages. It hurt to poke my gold studs through closed-up holes. My lobes became awfully swollen and itchy.

"I'm Saralee." I forced myself to say to another writer.

"I'm Debi." She was warm and friendly.

"I'm Saralee," I said, scratching my ear. It was bleeding.

"I love your columns," another writer said.

"People read them."

She said, "Excuse me," and went to talk to a sane person.

Everybody loves Bob. I write about him a lot. When he came in, women surrounded him. He stood by me. I hid behind him. He took my hand. It was bloody.

That's when one safety pin broke, and my right side plummeted. I grabbed someone's full drink glass, snugged my fallen flesh into the crook of my arm, and held myself up, level with my left side.

The woman politely motioned for her drink. I shook my head "No!" and backed away, clutching her glass. Bob whispered, "You're acting like a lunatic."

When I handed her drink back, my right side plopped. I looked down, then up, and explained, "Don't you just hate it when your safety pin breaks and your ear's bleeding?"

She put the glass down and quickly walked away, while glancing back warily.

And so, here is what I learned:

1. The three writers I admire the most were just as insecure as I was.

2. Self-consciousness is normal. I had a great time in spite of it.

3. I had a better time when I stopped thinking about myself and started asking others about themselves.

4. It truly doesn't matter if you repeat yourself out of nervousness, or your hand trembles when you're shaking someone else's.

5. And, well-known writers sometimes talk with a piece of green pepper in their teeth.

BIO Saralee Perel is an award-winning columnist, chosen in the National Society of Newspaper Columnists' annual competition. She's a Family Circle magazine contributor, a Chicken Soup for the Soul contributor and an 11 year nationally syndicated columnist. Her novel, "Raw Nerves" received the BookSense honor. Saralee's favorite activity is binge-eating pasta, which she reluctantly shares with her husband, Bob.

E-mail: sperel@saraleeperel.com

1 comment:

Alison said...

Ha ha ha ha! I thought I was the only one with the safety pins and the gammy ears!!!