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Monday, March 10, 2014

How I Suffer for My Art

This is a post from another blog I used to write.  Happened in California, back around 2006.  The names of people and businesses have been changed.  Just...because. 

Dang! How do I get myself into these things? 

After having taken about a five-year hiatus from writing dorky magazine articles (aka advertorials), I received an email from the editor of a local magazine last night:

Hi.  You still "in the biz?" :) 

I have a quick story with a health angle (nutrition and skin), complete with list of two to three experts to call ready to go... About 800 words... Due Thursdayish? Pay is 12c per 
word. Probably wouldn't take you any time at all.

Let me know if you are interested.


T. Editur

A hundred bucks? Sure. Why not? Right? So I say yes.

She writes me back:

Great! Here's the angle: 

With so much talk about how to improve our looks on the outside, what do these experts suggest as far as improving our looks (age/skin, etc.) from the inside? Nutrition, supplements, particular food, sleep, diet, excercise, ??? 

Heavy on the quotes, with a credibility statement (short, i.e. Dr. Whitehead, a dermatologist with 20 years experience,...) for each...

Here's the contact list:

Dr. Whitehead's Dermatology - 555-3686
The Bottom Line -- Health - 555-2900 , Kathy Krabs
Inze Black of Sagacious (she might not "fit" - she is a natural store that sells pure aromatherapy stuff, etc. - however, if "stress" is an angle, it might fit well. ). cell: 555-5989

Thanks for the last-minute assistance!

T. Editur

Piece of cake. Right? Ahem. I just shot off the following to my editor:

Dear T. Editur,

Holy crap! Wait. Maybe I should rephrase that. 

I shoulda asked you what The Bottom Line -- Health was. I just interviewed Kathy Krabs and started out by saying, 'Now, Kathy, first please tell me what is it you do and what The Bottom Line -- Health is, because I'm not familiar with it and want to make sure I get 
everything right.'

I'm all poised with my nifty little pen and my notebook.

She says, 'Well, I'm a certified colon hydrotherapist and I've been doing this for a little over nine years, and...'

'Waiddaminnit. You're a what?'

'A certified colon hydrotherapist.

Like I don't know what that means.  She gives enemas.  BIG enemas.

'Oh! Okay. I thought that was what you said, but wanted to make sure.'(snicker)

Then she told me all about it and ambushes me with, 'What are you doing tomorrow at 11 o'clock?'

Think! Think! Think! 

Damn. I couldn't think fast enough.

'Um, uh....nothing?'

'Oh, great! Then I insist you come in tomorrow for a complimentary session.'

'Oh, thank you, Kathy, but that's just not my cup of tea.  But, hey!  You know my husband? He's got irritable bowel syndro.....'
(Yes, I know. That was an evil thing to try and probably why I'm no longer  married.)

She'd have none of it. 

'Forget your husband,' she says. 'I want you to come in and have a session. That way, you'll be able to write about it better.'

Egad! I knew writing articles could be a pain in the... Wait. Let me rephrase that.

So, dear T. Editur, do I get combat pay for this? 

I'll let you know how it all comes out tomorrow.

Waiddaminnit.....let me rephrase that.


So then my husband says, "Hey! don't you have an appointment with Dr. Baba tomorrow?"

"D'oh! Yeah!"

So when Kathy Krabs calls me back to finalize the appointment, I say, "Um, hey. How long is this gonna take? Because I just remembered I have an appointment at noon tomorrow."

"Ohhhhh, dear. It takes at least an hour and a half. Is it something you can cancel?"

Big Sigh of Relief. Shew!

"Nope. Sorry. No can do. See, it's with my shrink and if I miss it I have to pay for the missed session. $400 an hour and all, you know? (Before you ask, heck no I don't pay my shrink that kinda money.)

"Oh, well."

Heh, heh, heh. I'm all proud of myself for shagging outta that one when she says, "But, hey! I could squeeze you in at 3 p.m. How about that?"

Dang! Did she just say, "squeeze it in???  Ew!"   I was so shocked, all I could manage was, "Um, uh, yeah. Sure."

"I'm so excited," she says. "Aren't you?"

"Yeah," I laughed right out loud. "I can hardly wait."

Toopid! Toopid! Toopid! I've GOT to learn to think on my feet better than this.

The blessed baptism of my colon is a whole 'nuther story altogether.  Which I may or may not tell at some point in the future.

Exit stage left:  squish, squish, squish...