Close up Hands Tea x

Sit a bit and hear some observational stories I’ve been steeping.

You? You?! Yeah, I’m talkin’ to you…

Having posted public service announcements before about composite writing and how I like to roll stories and characters into the granola mix of approximately 1500 word nuts and fruits they are, I feel another more formalized explanation is due.


Only because of the panty waddage and knotted shorts that some of my stories have generated over the last couple of months.  Hanes could have a field day with this if they wanted me as a spokesperson.  I can see the ad campaign now:  “Our underwear won’t bunch and can withstand even the snarkiest of Tea with T. posts!”


People, people!  There is an old rule about writing – one that says to write what you know.  I write what I know.  And, I know you.  Therefore, I will write about you.  However, when I do – you need to know that you won’t exactly be reading about Y.O.U. especially if you’ve done, or said, some particularly unsavory things.  See, once information has been received, it gets to rattle around in the shooting gallery that is my brain for awhile, then I composite the snarkiest of characters before ever putting pen to paper or fingers to keys – meaning, I am NOT (repeat NOT) specifically ever writing about any one unpleasant person.  If you happen to relate to something I've written and find yourself agitated, then perhaps your computer monitor has become the mirror you weren’t expecting.


Making a commitment long ago to write honestly, I also made a solemn vow to harm none.  That is why I usually don’t use names or physical identifiers, even when writing about the good eggs in my basket.  My modus operandi has always been to serve up strong opinions, but never bitter.  Not cursing in print also assures there will be no name calling, or if there is, it will at least be name calling of a more creative kind (Bratty McBratness and Quickdraw McLove Muffin, I’m talking to you).


Cheese and crackers, people.  Even when it came to writing about my ex-husband, I waited until I had two of ‘em.  It’s not as easy to pinpoint who did what to whom that way.  And, so help me Hannah, if/when there is a third, the gloves are coming off in the telling of all brutally honest tales of matrimony.


I write what I know and, if I know you, chances are you are probably going to pop up in something I write.  It’s the risk you take for being in my life, the grocery check-out line or doctor’s office and pharmacy I frequent.  The upside to this relationship is that I have been told that my stories make me an excellent dinner or cocktail party guest, relating tales to happy, smiling (occasionally laughing, downright gahsnorfling*) audiences.


There is a handmade sign taped to my computer that reads: I Cannot Make This Crap Up.  Because every day that I get up and join the game of life already in progress, stuff happens that I could not possibly script even in my craziest tea-fueled dreams.  As my beau says (who has his own ringside seat to crazy now), “It writes itself.”  And it most certainly does.  Day in and day out, the characters I interact with just have a natural ability to be entertaining.  Makes you appreciate how Reality Television came to be born.  But, on the flip side of that, the lives I view aren’t always suited for a Hollywood laugh track.  There are episodes that can be heartbreaking, heartwarming, gut-wrenchingly annoying and down right death defying (in that there are those who really are deserving of having their scrawny necks wrung, but nobody does).  My front row seating to nearly half a century of three-ring craziness means there are an awful lot characters to choose from when I do sit down to tell a story.  While those of you may recognize something of yourself (or a relative or psychotic mate) in these stories, allow me to fill you in on some simple facts about your relationship to the thousands of names in my mental rolodex:

You are not the only man to have cheated on his wife with one of the soccer moms (or any other kid sport where you got bored on the sidelines and thought flirting was a good way to fill the time)

You are not the first spouse to gaslight your mate into thinking they are crazy because your paranoid mind has blown things that may, or may not, have happened waaay out of proportion

You are not the original Princess Fruitbat to locate the jugular vein of a rich, vulnerable and love-starved old man

You are not the pioneer of the idea that not telling anyone about your addictions is akin to not having them at all. 


Etcetera, etcetera. 


Oh, and on a side note? 


You are also not the only famous/high-profile person I know; you and you’re a) mistress(es); b) illegitimate child(ren); c) drug/alcohol/addiction issues; or d) all of the above.


Yes, I’ve watched a lot of stories unfold all around me, in addition to my own I Cannot Make This Crap Up stuff and, well… buckle up, people.  I am gonna write about it.  Truthfully.  Lately, though (as skivvies scrunch up around me) this has me thinking that I might have to add a new sign to my office (Ooh! Crafty people alert!).  Something along the lines of: “I’m Not Here to Make Friends.” Because those? I already have.  In fact, quite a few new ones thanks to those who take the time to sit with me weekly, having a bit of Tea with T. – knowing they can always add a drop of sweetener, if need be.



*Gahshnorfling (adj) – laughing to the point of breathlessness, resulting in foreign emissions of incomprehensible verbalization.  Etymology: A 2011 T-ism.


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