I had a brief respite from writing this morning–the book is finished except for the final scene, my editor has given me revision notes on first 230 pages of the ms. and the total, finished 320-page product is due in two weeks—so I took a breath and jumped in the Highlander to run some errands and get some FRESH AIR.
First stop: to buy Banjo Man a present.
Second stop: Home Depot to look at pre-lit artificial Christmas trees. I’ve discussed my intense hatred of putting on the lights on the Christmas tree (real or fake) for the past 43 years, so I won’t go into that. It is not pretty and I am not proud of it. We made the switch from real to artificial a few years ago, but I still had to put the [expletive] lights on. Yesterday I told Banjo Man that I was going against his previous wishes and I was buying a new tree WITH THE LIGHTS ALREADY ON, no matter what he said. I thought this would bring peace and harmony and Christmas spirit into our home again. And after all these months of Writing Stress, I do not need Tree Light Stress.
And Banjo Man, who has been hiding in the basement for the past 15 months while I’ve been writing books, quickly agreed with me. Really, the man would agree with just about anything right now if it meant I wouldn’t (a) cry, (b) freak out or (c) make him watch a marathon weekend of River Monsters.
Third stop: CVS, to pick up a prescription and some vitamin B12, having recently discovered I don’t have any in my body. While I was there I realized I could get a flu shot, so I filled out the paperwork and waited my turn.
Next to me came a young man (mid 20’s) holding a bottle of Diet Pepsi and a car magazine. I was amazed that someone his age was going to wait for his prescription to be filled and entertain himself with something **other** than his phone. How sweet, I thought. How absolutely old-fashioned. Wow. Young people read magazines and don’t have to be on their phones when they have a few minutes down time!!!
I was tempted to ask him if I could take a picture of him for my blog, but I didn’t want to disturb his reading. But…then I looked closer. He had taken out a smart phone, plugged in ear buds and was **photographing** articles in the magazine with the camera on his phone.
Fourth stop: Verizon. My cheap simple cell phone died. I hate that thing. I had to buy a new one, which I already don’t like very much. Do you know that when you buy a new phone from Verizon they charge you a $30 upgrade fee?
“You mean,” I asked the salesgirl. “I get charged $30 because I am buying a new phone from you?”
“Yes. It just started last year.”
“So it cost $30 for the privilege of buying a cell phone, like a ticket to walk in the door?”
“Uh…” She looked very sad about it. And there wasn’t anything I could do about it, except stomp off and try to find another carrier, but that would end up being more expensive, blah, blah, blah.
Fifth stop: Subway. Of course.
I could have bought 7 Spicy Italian subs with that $30.00. Wonder why Verizon needed it? Or should I ask how they get away with it???