Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Story-Time Tuesday - Living Fiction

Jenny Matlock
If you missed where this story started just click here to read it or simply click on the Story-Time Tuesday link at the top of my blog to take you to previous chapters.

Living Fiction - Chapter 51

Here's where Chapter 50 left you.

I returned quickly to my thoughts. Maybe the sayings quit working for me because I wasn’t really using them for me. I think I was always saying the words in my heart as a prayer for my son. The words were never for me.

Maybe for today I would try applying them to myself. I straightened my shoulders, “Okay, Pearl. One day at a time…one day at a time…”

I walked to Millie’s repeating the words over and over again in my head.

She wasn’t home. Edgar seemed depressed. I wasn’t.

I left the make-up on the welcome mat where Millie would be certain to see it.

On the short walk home, Edgar lagged behind. “C’mon, Edgar, one day at a time! We’ll try and see Princess tomorrow!”

I think my pep talk cheered him up. Or maybe he just perked up when we got into the kitchen and he saw Jessie and Griffin seated at the table looking at my blog!

And now, Chapter 51 Continues.

“Hey!” I said a little too loudly, causing them both to jump a bit. “Wow, I’m excited! You’re already looking at my blog!”

But they weren’t.

That probably explained Griffin’s shy and slightly guilty smile.

Instead of my cute sky and grass background, they were looking at movie schedules. Movie schedules? That had absolutely nothing to do with my blog. Grrrrr.

Jessie looked up with an odd look on her face, “Well…Mom, we are going to look at your blog and then we’re going to the movies?”

“We are?” I inquired.

“No…we are, you … aren’t…unless … I mean, well, you really want to go to the movies. With us. You don’t, right Mom? I mean you don’t want to go with us. Right? You have lots and lots of stuff to do Mom, right?”

Gosh. I thought my daughter was a bit more subtle than that.

“Oh, Jessie. I’d loooove to go with you to the movies…but I have all kinds of stuff to do. Lots and lots of stuff. You understand, right?”

Jessie rolled her eyes at me and gave me the death glare.

There is no pleasing daughter’s somedays, you know?

In an effort to salvage an uncomfortable situation, Griffin cleared his throat and said, “Pearl, of course you can come to the movies with us if you want.” He gave Jessie ‘that look’. I let him off the hook. “That’s nice, Griffin, but seriously…I have lots and lots of stuff to do…you understand, right?”

Jessie rolled her eyes again.


Quickly they finished up their movie discussion and then Griffin asked for my blog name. He looked started for a moment when I told him, ‘Mylifeinsideanoyster’. When his eyes glazed over halfway through my explanation of how I had chosen the name, I think he finally understood.

He looked around on my blog, and finally turned to me, “You don’t have much content here, Pearl. And I kinda don’t actually understand what your blog is about.”

“You don’t?” I was puzzled.

“I don’t. You say you’ve been doing the same things for a long time and you’re ready to ‘shake up your life’. I’m not sure if that’s really a ‘theme’, Pearl…you know?”

“It isn’t?”

“No, not really. So what are you going to write about? What do you want to learn about? What do you know the most about? What do you want people to know about you?”

“Well, geez, Griffin. I already said all that.”

“Actually, Pearl, you didn’t. Okay, think about what happens when you meet somebody new. Like Jay, for example. What did you and Jay talk about?”

Holy moly. I just realized that Griffin thought that Jay and I were like…ummm…you know…a couple or something.

“Griffin, Jay and I aren’t like…ummm…well…you know…”

“Like what? Pearl, I’m having a hard time understanding what you’re trying to tell me here. Okay, it’s like this. When you and I talked at the coffee shop I told you about school and you told me about starting a blog..and, oh yeah…now I remember…you told me you were going to do a stream of consciousness blog. I’m not seeing any streaming here. And I’m certainly not seeing any consciousness stuff.”

“Okay, Griffin. Tell me what that means exactly. What am I supposed to do…EXACTLY?”

“I can’t tell you EXACTLY ‘cuz it’s not my blog. But like…ummm…okay…what did you do today before you came to the coffee shop?”

I launched into the story of my makeover with Millie and how I had ended up squeezing into too tight clothes and could hardly recognize myself and…blah, blah, blah.

Griffin started laughing halfway through the story.

“That! Pearl, write about that stuff! You’re actually really funny. Just write what you told me and do that whenever you want to post…but…”

“But what?” I said.

“But…here’s the problem with those kind of blogs, Pearl. You don’t have anything specific…I mean some blogs do a lot of recipes or crafts or all that stuff women do…you know…making cards and … ummm… sewing things with little squares…so if you like to do that stuff you can actually google ‘blogs about crafting’ and then you can find other blogs like yours. Then when you visit them and they visit you back, it’s like visiting with people that you have a lot in common with. Right?”

“I kind of see what you mean…but…”

Griffin continued, “And then you can learn more about what you like to do and you can show off the things you do and then everyone is all happy and it’s like a little on-line club!”

Jessie jumped up. “Okay, Griffin. I think she’s got it. That was a great explanation. Mom? All set? I think we’re gonna run to the movies now and…”

“Wait! No! I’m not all set. I don’t actually ‘do’ anything, Griffin. I mean I am an okay cook and I’ve dabbled a little bit with crafty stuff but I’m not a card maker or a quilter and…”

Griffin glanced at the wall clock again, anxious to join an impatient Jessie. I wasn’t going to let him off the hook. This was supposed to be about my blog…not about seeing a movie with my daughter.

“Pearl, think for a second. What do you know the most about?”

I thought. And I thought. And in a small voice I said, “Loss. Grief. Being lost.”

Jessie stopped fidgeting by the door and Griffin looked at me very intently.

“Pearrrrlll…geez…here’s the thing. You CAN write about that stuff, but you can’t write about it all the time. You have to mix it up. Otherwise it’ll just be too depressing.”

“Well, geez, Griffin. Thanks a lot. This isn’t helping me at all. I need you to tell me what to blog about. I need you to help me with this and not just brush me off because you want to go to the movies with my daughter!”

Griffin looked very uncomfortable. I seemed to be developing a knack of doing that to people. He cleared his throat. Jessie looked pointedly at the clock. I wasn’t going to back down. This was supposed to be about my blog.

I waited.

I think I waited a little too long, though, because just then Millie knocked on the kitchen door and Edgar went crazy.

Oh for heavens sake.

Jessie opened the door and Princess waltzed in. Edgar practically swooned. Griffin and Jessie looked at each other…all googly eyed and ran out the door.

Millie strolled calmly into the kitchen. She took one look at my new, improved, make-up and clothes. Her hand raised dramatically to her forehead. It’s a wonder she didn’t gouge her eye out with her long, bright orange fingernails. I wondered briefly when she had time to change the polish color. I wondered briefly if she had actually changed the polish color so it would match her day-glo orange, skin-tight track-suit edged in zebra fur.

And seriously, did you know that athletic shoes actually come in cheetah print with glittery pink laces?

“Pearl,” she said dramatically, “Don’t blame me when your ‘boyfriend’turns right around and leaves when he sees you looking all frumpty-dumpty.”

“Frumpty, dumpty? Millie. I think I look great…and if I’d wanted to walk around looking like you I would have…boyfriend? What do you mean boyfriend?”

“You know? Boyfriend. That guy that you’re babysitting adorable little Edgar for. That boyfriend. The one who was sitting on your front steps for about an hour waiting for you!”

To be continued on Tuesday, September 20.

(c) 2010 Jennifer R. Matlock
This publication is the exclusive property of Jennifer R. Matlock and is protected
under the US Copyright Act of 1976 and all other applicable international, federal, state and local laws. The contents of this post/story may not be reproduced as a whole or in part, by any means whatsoever, without consent of the author, Jennifer R. Matlock. All rights reserved.

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Ames said...

Ok I'm starting to feel self comscious about my blog....

So glad Jay is back. Now maybe we can find out all about the mysterious Jay. Why does everyone think so highly of him? Where does he disappear to all the time??

That Millie is quite the colorful character too.

Looking forward to next week.~Ames

Willoughby said...

Arrrr! What a cliff hanger! I can't wait to find out what's going to happen with Jay.

Jeanie said...

I'm glad Jay is back and like Ames above, I'm feeling a little bad about my blog :)

Julie Kwiatkowski Schuler said...

Oh yay! What will happen with Jay? Don't mess it up, Pearl!

Amy said...

I think I need to stop reading this story until it is complete. then I wont go crazy with all these cliffhangers! :) It is too good to make us read it in parts. Sheesh!

Ms. A said...

I need Griffin's help. When the newness wears off of Jessie, do you think he could find time for a consultation and pep talk?

Susan Anderson said...

Finally! Now we're talkin'!!

Welcome back, Jay.


H said...

An hour! Patient guy!

I wonder who he was dying to see most, Edgar (Spot) or Pearl :p

Now then... While Pearl's waiting for Jay to turn up again, could you please tell her to get on with writing about her makeover?!

cj Schlottman said...

This is all coming together in a real way. Your description of Millie's attire cracked me up!

Griffin sounds mature beyond his age, and I am so glad that Jay is back.

Waiting for next week!


PS - Back at work. Yea!! Burns nearly completely healed.

Pat Tillett said...

I can see that I really need to back track here a ways, I've missed out on several of these.
Nice job Jenny...

Anonymous said...

Jay was waiting on the front porch??? Oh, I hope he comes back.

That blog may never get going now that Griffin has been distracted.

Loving this more and more and more....great writing sweet Jenny! Hugs