Things I’m Not, Part II

So I’m talking to my critique partner, the lovely Valerie Taylor, and she says, “I have good gossip.” And I say, “Oh, goody, what is it?” because I’m not a nice person. And she says, “It’s about you.” And I say, “Oh, yeah, it’s the Bob thing. That’s not happening.” She said, “No, this is about you moving to New York to live with your boyfriend and get a facelift.”

This is where I have to pause and wonder what kind of a slow news day it has to be before people gossip about a middle-aged romance writer who lives in Ohio. It’s kind of flattering. Especially when Val says, “It’s all over the internet.” No, it’s not. Cheney trying to off one of his hunting partners is all over the internet. Jon Stewart hosting the Oscars is all over the internet. My personal life is barely of interest to the people who read my blogs and even that, I figure, is just because I’m a train wreck waiting to happen (love that song) and you all want to be standing by when I run completely off the rails.

But in the interests of truth . . .

1. I Am Not Moving to New York City.
Not right now anyway. My kid lives there and I like her and I’d like to see more of her. Plus all my friends are writers and editors and agents, and sooner or later all writers’ roads lead to New York so I could see them when they came to stay with me. But have you priced New York real estate? It’s insane. Plus, I just put in a killer bathroom here. And then there’s the five hundred city book tour I’m on for most of 2006. So I’d like to move but I’m thinking New York is not a possibility, especially not right now. But kudos to whoever’s spreading this one because it has a fair chance of being true some day.

2. I Am Not Living with My Boyfriend
(I’m sorry, I just can’t get past Cloris Leachman saying, “He vas my BOYFRIENDT!” I said to Val, “Aren’t I kind of past the boyfriend stage?” and she said, “You’re never too old for a boyfriend,” but I’m thinking there must be a better word. Lover, but that’s probably TMI. Significant Other, but that’s jargony. Guy I spend the majority of my time with, but that’s Bob. Your assignment for today, class, is to come up with a good word for romantic companion for the adult female.)

Where was I? Oh, right.

2. I Am Not Living with My Boyfriend
Val and I tried to figure this one out and the only thing we could think of is that there’s a nice guy who rents apartments by the night in New York and I’m crazy about his basement. That’s not a euphemism, I love the ground floor apartment. If I were a rich woman and the apartment were for sale, I’d buy it in a heartbeat, but I’m not, it isn’t, and he isn’t. My boyfriendt, I mean. I said, “Are you sure they don’t mean Bob?” and Val said, with great enthusiasm, “No, this is beside Bob, so you have TWO boyfriends and they’re going to fight it out.” She’s enjoying this way too much, but then this is the woman who bought me a Brazilian wax for Christmas, so what can you expect?

3. I’m Not Getting a Facelift
Oh, THANK YOU VERY MUCH for thinking I need one. I had a brow lift and eyelid lift done when I turned fifty and I’m very happy with it. The last time I checked, my jawline isn’t what it used to be, but then what is? So I’m not planning on one, although I’m not ruling it out forever, I might turn sixty, look in the mirror, and say, “This will never do,” and hire somebody to get my jowls off the floor, but this is the Year from Hell and I really don’t see myself adding surgery to everything else.

The important thing is, nobody seems to think I’m pregnant any more. I’m assuming this is because my face now looks so old they know I’m past my childbearing years, so always a silver lining there, campers. And really, when you think of the vile things people could be saying about me, moving to New York to live with my boyfriend and get a facelift . . . well, it could be worse.

And I’m sure that shortly it will be.