Sunday, March 29, 2009

A letter I had to write

To the person I cut off in traffic last week,

Please accept my most heartfelt apologies. I am deeply sorry that I pulled out right in front of you. I realize that the sheepish look I gave you as I mouthed "I'm sorry" when you blew past me in the other lane cannot, in the slightest, amend for the terrible wrong I committed--as evidenced by the dirty look you sent me. (And really, I could only hope to one day be able to give looks that almost reduce others to tears. It's a gift that I'm afraid I don't have. You are so lucky.)

I want to humbly point out that my gross vehicular infraction was an honest mistake. Yes, I know I was talking on my cell phone at the time--a sin of which I have repented for many a car ride. But it was a conversations that required a certain amount of attention, and my children were fighting at great volume in the backseat. As you can see, my failure to check adequately for cars exceeding the speed limit did have some basis. I only hope that you can understand and cut me some slack for making you apply your brakes and switch lanes to pass me. (The *nerve* of me, I know. I probably made you 5 seconds late for that important meeting deciding the fate of the universe. Again, I apologize.)

I've often thought it would be nice to have some sort of marquee that would display messages across my back window, such as "I'm really sorry! I didn't mean to do that!" in neon letters. It would have been good for times like this, but I'm not sure I would have liked your reply. So perhaps it was for the best that we were left to communicate with facial expressions and vague hand gestures (I'm sure that wasn't the finger you meant to raise).

Dear person in the other car, I also want to thank you. Our meeting inspired me to dig out the forgotten Blue Tooth from the nest of boxes when I got my new phone, and figure out how to use it. Now that it is all set up, it really is very handy. I'm not sure I would have found the motivation otherwise. So, "Thank you!"

I hope this letter finds you well and in a driving nirvana unimpeded by cretins like me. I admire you so much that I've been working on my dirty looks for our next chance encounter. Until we meet again.

Best regards,


Friday, March 27, 2009

The science of vampires

This just tickled my funny bone to no end, which is good considering the crushing rejections that came my way this week in the agent hunt and the anti-spring snowstorms blowing through the last few days.

If you have vampires on the brain (and who doesn't after the DVD of "Twilight" just came out) then here's a must read: "Why Vampires Would Have a Population Problem."

My favorite line: "I think a more plausible explanation is the tendency for vampires to involve themselves in doomed love affairs with slightly dotty young women, causing them to spend centuries mooning around in crypts not getting much done."

Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

All of us have a little Wild Thing inside

And some of us more than others...

Who hasn't read this book?

Now take a peek at this.

I hope it's good.

Monday, March 23, 2009

All kinds of contagious around here

No, I'm not talking about the flu (and if you have it, please stay away from our house.) I'm talking about running. I've been at it for 2 years now, and in the last 8 months or so Jason finally caught the bug. Whether or not that's a good or a bad thing is up for debate.

So, let's have at it.

Good = Jason is in better shape than 8 months ago.

Bad = He might be in better shape than me, with half the amount of time working on it.

Good = He decided to upgrade his workout clothes from the mud-spattered, ripped sweats he wears to play flag football.

Bad = His workout wardrobe is now better than mine. And color-coordinated, which mine is not.

Good = Jason discovered a natural aptitude for running.

Bad = He kicks my butt on the short runs, running a minute less per mile.

Good = It is something we can do together.

Bad = Jason busted out a 10 mile run with me the first time I ran that distance. The longest he'd run before was 5 miles. And I was more sore than him.

Good = Co-workers noticed Jason's running prowess and asked him to join their team for the Wasatch Back Relay.

Bad = I've wanted to run it for a while now, and it looks like he'll do it first.

Good = Jason is healthier and more trim.

Bad = He's never so sore from doing lunges and squats he can barely go up and down the stairs because he has to try and work off those stubborn areas carrying more than we'd like from having children.

Good = He enjoys running more than he thought.

Bad = I'm sure he'll decide last minute to run my half-marathon race, and probably beat me.

I realize all the bad arguments are petty and stupid and have to do with my (un)healthy sense of competition. So I guess the conclusion is that Jason catching the running bug is a GOOD THING.

And congratulations to him on his first 5K race, which he ran in 21 minutes 3 seconds. What a stud!

On a complete side note, less than 2 weeks until the half-marathon. Yea!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

And with the economy, what's better than FREE?

That's right, ladies and gents. I said FREE!

My awesomely talented sister of the angelic voice is giving away some of the tracks from her debut album, Unseen. (Look for a shameless promoting & bragging blog by yours truly in the near future.)

So go get some.

Here are the details.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hellooooo, is Jaime there?

I realize there's been a dearth of exciting and amusing Theler blogs this week. Here are some hints as to why.

Lots going on this week. I'll be back soon, promise.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Erin Go Braugh!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!

I love this day because green is my favorite color, and for a day I can pretend that I've inspired everyone else to make it their favorite color, too.

I was going to write a witty and fun blog post, but nothing witty and fun is coming today. So I'll just settle for Happy St. Patrick's Day and lots of green thoughts.

**And in case you're curious. Erin go braugh is a phonetic version of "Éirinn go brách," which in Irish (Gaelic) means "Ireland Forever."

Friday, March 13, 2009

Bag Tag - in which my daughter's purse contents are cooler than mine

I've seen on some friend's blogs an idea that I'm going to totally steal. It's called "Bag Tag" and if you're tagged, then you empty out the contents of your purse and take a picture (minus any super-embarrassing objects having to do with hygiene, that, frankly, no one wants to know you have in there anyway).

I haven't been tagged for this, but I simply *have* to "Bag Tag" my daughter. She has multiple purses stuffed with a dizzying array of things (toys, rocks, money, clothes, feathers, dolls, art projects, sticks, beads, etc). But the best purse, IMO, is the purse she made herself. And it kicks my purse's butt in the coolness factor.

*Disclaimer: I'm sad to admit that not only was this not my idea, but I didn't even help her. All credit goes to her amazing creativity and the fabulous mommy-skills of my neighbor, Mindy, who helped a horde of little girls make their own purses one day at her house. I'm not worthy!!

So... Here Goes. My daughter's purse.

Let me list the contents for you.
(No animals were harmed in the manufacturing of this purse, and all items are 100% hand-made. Everything was produced in the USA.)

Back row: flowers, a book (she's her mommy's girl), a laptop, shopping list, nail polish, lipstick, a plum (you need snacks), and a mirror.
2nd row: powder compact, cherries, more nail polish, an apple, a bottle, teddy bear (for the baby), baby bow, keys, a binkie, face glitter.
3rd row: gum, mascara, a candy bar, diaper, orange, grapes, peanuts, another book.
Front row: wallet, and the purse itself.

Here's a close-up of the outside of the wallet.

And it even opens.

(Notice the family pictures and credit card - there are slits cut out on the right side for the cards and it opens so you can put money in it.)

Here are her keys (each separately colored, cut out, and connected on a string to make a ring of keys).

Her lap top.

Her cell phone (which I didn't realize was in the other room while we were taking pictures).

Putting on her "make-up"

I would just be plain embarrassed to take a picture of my boring purse now.

The creativity just amazes me. Who says boys and girls don't play different? My boys would *never* have thought this up. Making weapons out of legos, pipes, sticks, and rolls of paper - yes. (I'm sad that I never got a picture of the all-paper semi-automatic machine gun. What was I thinking?!)

You gotta love kids!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Another Birthday

We've had a busy couple weeks for birthdays in the Theler house. Yesterday we celebrated the baby of the family turning 6! So big!

Two weeks early and almost not making it to the hospital on time (or the doctor making it in time, either), our Theler girl was born six years ago. We hadn't completely decided on a name at that point, so we told everyone she was born and that they'd know her name in the morning.

She's been all-girl since day one. There was a whole year where she refused to wear anything that wasn't pink. And she's always loved dressing up, whether as a princess or in mommy's boots.

She's still all-girl, with a lot of mischievousness thrown in.

We love you, Senea! Happy Birthday!!

Monday, March 9, 2009

The Sprinkler Rainbow Conspiracy

Even though this is funny in a head-slap kind of way, perhaps my favorite thing is the comment: "What is oozing out of our ground???" Answer: stupid, lots and lots of stupid.

And *that's* why we need education, people!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Hardy Har Har

There was once a young man who, in his youth, professed a desire to become a "great" writer.

When asked to define "great" he said "I want to write stuff that the whole world will read, stuff that people will react to on a truly emotional level,stuff that will make them scream, cry, wail, howl in pain, desperation, and anger!"

He now works for Microsoft writing error messages.

*Thanks to Jeff Savage for the joke.*

Thursday, March 5, 2009

American Idol: Writer-style

There are some inalienable truths in entertainment today: celebrities are usually much more intelligent when they're saying someone else's lines, computer graphics are getting freakily realistic, Hollywood thinks bigger chests sell more, I gotta get a new Kindle (this doesn't mean I have an old Kindle, just that I want the new one, especially since I've read rave reviews of the new app which syncs your Kindle to your iPhone--of course, then I'd have to get an iPhone, too), and America is crazy for reality shows.

And I think it's time us writers get a slice of the reality show mania. Studies show that 85% of Americans feel like they have a book in them, and they should get a chance to completely skip all the hard work and due diligence the rest of us put in.

So, announcing my truly fab idea. *drum roll...*

American (American...American...American...)

Writer (Writer...Writer...Writer...)

*In case you're wondering, that's what cool echo sound effects look like in print.*

Here are our judges.

The Simon-type who gives brutally honest (or sometimes just brutal) feedback:

Stephen King
(Don't let this happy, innocent-looking picture fool you. The person running the "beep" button will have to stay on his toes.)

2) The Randy-type who will have to contractually say "molten hot" at least once a show:

Nora Roberts
(Can't you just seeing her calling every other contestant "Dawg"?)

3) Because we need a British accent:

J.K. Rowling
(She can just gush incoherently. As long as she shows up, we're good.)

4) And just so we have some conflict between the judges (after all, conflict is what drives plot, right?):

Stephenie Meyer
(And I'm sure Stephen King didn't really mean it when he said her writing was total crap or that she can't write worth a darn, right? And maybe Meyers can rig a bucket of animal blood to fall on King's head or sabotage the teleprompter to read "REDRUM." The ratings will go through the roof!)

Now that we have our judges, this is what the contestants will face. Dressing up in various survival gear and voting people off by a campfire is optional (I'll let the network that picks this up decide on that).

*Genre benders: Each writer draws a character, a situation, and a setting from a hat. Then they have to write a gripping story/chapter in the chosen genre. For example, you could pick Leon the shape-changing chameleon obsessed with finding his parents. The situation is that a glowering... I mean, good-looking beyond anything on earth ... girl keeps staring at him like she wants to eat him, but he's inexplicably drawn to her like a moth to a flame. And the setting could be a head-hunter's village in the Amazon. Then write it in epic fantasy style like Tolkein. I tell you, the true talent would just shine!

*Book signing role-playing: Put the writers in the middle of a mall, sprinkle in some slightly eccentric people (like the guy who's memorized his entire first page of his yet-to-be finished book and strikes a pose and recites it--loudly--and waits for your reaction), and see which writers can pull it off. They have to get a certain number of people to buy their book, without actually tackling them.

*Assign the contestants to write a brilliant query letter for either a new story or ones that are well-known. Query letter for Gone with the Wind anyone?

*Play capture the manuscript, but throw in some pretty cool weapons--paint guns, camouflaged pits, butterfly nets, etc.

* Hollywood week. Pair the writers up with a celebrity and see if they can put together a cohesive memoir.

*Split the contestants into teams, assign a drill sergeant to each team, and make them lose weight. (Oops, sorry. I don't know that we can pull from that reality show.)

And those are just *some* of the veritable bottomless pit of ideas. I think it's only a matter of hours before this idea takes off.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Au Revoir, Monsier Printer

Does this look a little like the most retarded printer on earth thrown against the wall, where it lies abandoned?

Why, yes. It does.

And does this look like a snazzy laser printer sitting smugly in the spot the abandoned ink jet used to occupy?

Why, yes. It does.

And if the laser printer knows what's good for it, it will never try to print in all green or only in French, or it'll follow in the other printer's footsteps. That's a promise! (Although it weighs considerably more than the ink jet, so I doubt I can chuck it as far.)

For more details (or just because you're going, "huh?") see this older post on the French Conspiracy.