Follow

RandiLynnMrvos



July 25, 2018




Surprisingly audacious reflections of a humble writer


YOU SAY CABELA'S AND I SAY CARRABBA'S  

Last holiday season, I gave my hairdresser a gift he didn't expect.

You would think that since I'm a creative sort of person that coming up with presents would be up my alley.  But it's hard being creative year after year.  Though I've known Antonio for a long time, I'm never sure what he likes as a gift.  Since he seems to enjoy eating out at restaurants, I get him gift cards.

This time, I decided to choose something different other than the usual American food restaurant chains like TGI Fridays, Ruby Tuesday, and O'Charlies.  I thought he'd like Italian cuisine so while at the grocery store, I bought him a gift card.

A week before Christmas, my husband delivered the card to the salon for me.  Antonio opened it before Jim left.

"Why, thank you Jim," said Antonio.  "I've never shopped here before."

Jim looked at him curiously and peeked at the card.  He had to hold back the laughter until he came home.

At dinner time, Jim told me he gave Antonio his gift.

"Did he like it?" I asked.

"Do you remember what you bought him?"

"Of course.  It was a gift card for Carrabba's."

My loving husband waited for me to say more.

"You know, the Italian restaurant."

"Ah...no you didn't."

"But I always get him a restaurant gift card.  I wanted to get him something different this year."

"You did.  You bought him a Cabela's gift card."  Jim burst out laughing.

"What's so funny.  Isn't it an Italian restaurant?"

"It's an outdoor sporting store.  A place for people who like to hunt, fish, and boat."

I felt so embarrassed.  Antonio is not an outdoorsman.

He wouldn't wear plaid or flannel outdoorsy clothes.  I've only seen him in black polo shirts, black jeans, and black tennis shoes.  He would never shop there.  Well, there goes that gift card.

The next morning, I called Antonio to apologize, but he said don't worry about it.  But I felt horrible.  I wanted to get him another gift.  I drove to Bella Notte (I've eaten here—I know it's an Italian restaurant) to purchase a gift certificate.  Finally, Antonio would have a gift he could use.  Jim delivered it to him a few days before Christmas.

"Did Antonio like the new gift?" I asked.

"He did," said Jim.  "Antonio said we didn't have to buy him two gifts, but to tell you thank you...

and that he loves his plaid shirt from Cabela's."


CWW is published twice a month.

À la prochaine! 












July 12, 2018



 Surprisingly audacious reflections of a humble writer 



THE DEADLIEST CRAB 


"Want to go crab fishing?" asks my husband.

That's my cue to join him to watch an episode of the Deadliest Catch.  Or as I like to call it, the Deadliest Crab.

Deadliest Catch follows six sea captains and their crew as they hunt for elusive Alaskan crab.  Viewers can always count on drama.  Sea captains battle:
  • arctic storms with hurricane-force winds and 40 foot waves
  • ice floes
  • snow blindness
  • crew management 
  • accidents that cause serious injury or death 
  • fatigue
  • health issues (back issues and conditions brought on by stress)
  • equipment failure which may lead to fires, oil leaks, power outage, or loss of steering 

Deadliest Crab
On top of all that, the captain must find crab. That's tricky because radar doesn't detect crabs resting upon the bottom of the sea. 

Many captains must rely on intuition to locate the crab.  Others refer to logs which indicate the location and numbers of crabs caught in years gone by.  And captains will use  devices that mimic the sound of a crab-feeding frenzy or rely on smelly crab farts to lead them to rich crab grounds.



Crab fishing is one of the most dangerous jobs in the country.  It seems like once a season, Deadliest Catch airs footage of the United States Coast Guard searching for crewmen of capsized vessels or retrieving injured fishermen from a deck—a feat in itself as swimmers lower a rescue basket from a helicopter through rough wind onto a rocking ship.

Sea captain Josh Harris says, "It's not a sport for the weak or the weak-minded."

From time to time, a little levity peppers the show with the crew pulling silly pranks like filling a fisherman's boots with water and then freezing them or moving a captain's boat (unbeknownst to him) to another dock.

When an episode gets bloody
however, (say like when a steel crane smashes a forehead) or gross (or when a wound is lanced or part of a finger is lost), I'll look away while my husband replays the scene to be sure he hadn't missed any gore.

I may have writely challenges (marketing Maggie, submitting to agents, producing Kid's Imagination Train, writing two blogs) but these are nothing compared to fishing the Bering Sea.

Writing for children is demanding (ask any children's author) but it's not usually deadly.  With writing, you may face rejection, but you don't run the risk of getting bloody and gory...

and you never have to be on the lookout for crab farts.  

CWW is published twice a month.

À la prochaine! 



July 2, 2018

 

Surprisingly audacious reflections of a humble writer




ONE AND NOT DONE 


I never used to be a Wildcat fan.

Pretty shameful being that I graduated from the University of Kentucky.

But over the last few years, I can't get enough of UK basketball.  I think what attracted me to the game is our charismatic coach John Calipari.

Though Calipari has taken six teams to the NCAA Final Fours and led UK to win the championship (2012), many criticize him for supporting the principle of one and done—having a basketball player play one season and then be eligible to get drafted for the NBA.

According to the wildcatbluenation.com "The one and done situation is good for players whose talent is certainly ready for the NBA. Kentucky Basketball has allowed many players in the last 7 seasons to fulfill a dream. They are able to support their family by playing the game they love.
No one should question a decision made by an 18 year old kid that is NBA ready to leave school and get paid to play. Kentucky has offered these types of players the opportunity for a fast track to the pros."

But because of this doctrine, Calipari has his work cut out coaching a team largely comprised of freshman.  

For that, I admire him.  He seems to care about his players and wants them to do well, despite his frequent rant "OUT"—meaning have a seat on the bench and contemplate what you did wrong.  Time-out on the bench is usually not for long.  Players always get multiple chances to get back into the game.
That's the way I wish writing was like, having multiple chances to think about what went wrong (with a submission) and then go back and get it right.  Usually a writer gets one chance and one chance only.  Rarely do writers get a second chance to submit an edited version of their work to a publisher or an agent.

With Kid's Imagination Train ezine however, writers get multiple chances to edit their manuscripts.  They learn how to revise their work so that it can be published.  Like Calipari, I want them to do well.

Kid's Imagination Train writers are not one and done's.  Our writers submit again and again to KIT after their first acceptance.  In fact, some writers have been with our little ezine for over five years.

I admit some writers publish once with us and move on to the pros (Highlights, Ranger Rick, Boys' Life).  They exemplify UK's latest slogan: succeed-and-proceed which now replaces the three-word mantra.  But most of our writers are loyal and recognize they get a privileged opportunity to work on their game.





CWW is published twice a month.

À la prochaine!