So I Went To New York . . .

Usually I craft these blog entries, rewrite them, try to hone them so they make sense (except for the Trudy entries) but I’m behind so I’m just going to zap this one out so the people who are chanting in the background—yes, there are people on the JCF list who are typing “Blog, blog, blog,” believe it or not—will shut up and go away. Although now that I’ve responded to them they’ll just keep doing it because I’ve reinforced them. One damn thing after another.

Why haven’t I blogged? Well, I’ve been BUSY. Busy trying to figure out Trudy (and I love her), busy trying to find things in my office, and now busy in New York, the greatest city in the world, trying to get business and social stuff done. I’m in the West Village in this great apartment in this wonderful brownstone, and I’m in love with it and with the Village. I came into town because I needed to meet with my agent and editor, and to have lunch with Mollie and Dale and Gail and their friend Susan at the Knickerbocker Grill where the waiter kissed me so I’m going back, and then Katherine Ramsland caught the train in from PA and we had a Moroccan girl’s-night-out dinner party at Dale’s. (Dale gave me the address and I said, “What apartment number?” and she said, “There’s a doorman. Do you think we live like ANIMALS?”) Dinner was wonderful except that Katherine would keep talking about the undead. I finally had to say loudly during dessert, “I’M EATING HERE” so she didn’t get blood all over my flourless chocolate cake. Then Dale told a great story about when she was in Africa that I cannot repeat here without her permission but it’s a beauty, involving a famous person and sex. Then Gail talked about her three marriages, which she compares to Gilligan’s Island: The professor, the millionaire, and the gynecologist. Yes, I missed the gynecologist episode, too. The important thing is, Gail didn’t.

And then Bob came into town so we could get our publicity photos taken. I hate getting my photo taken, so I’m awful to work with, but Bob is much, much worse. Of course Mollie was here to run everything including Bob, which I have to admit I enjoyed the hell out of. She showed up with four shopping bags of clothes, looked at what Bob was wearing, and said, “Strip.” He tried on the jeans she got him, came out of the bathroom in his old ones, and said, “They were too big.” She said, “Show me.” Not a woman to trifle with, my daughter. He changed back into them so she could see exactly how they didn’t fit so she could get him the right size which she did by the next morning. She said, “Did you bring a belt?” and he said, “I don’t wear a belt,” and she handed him a belt. Now he wears a belt. He made a brief fuss about a corduroy jacket, but it was futile. In the end, she had him looking really good, GQ good. Not that he wasn’t perfectly fine before, of course, I am not criticizing. (Note to anyone who was in Maui: If I ever get my hands on that damn volcano shirt, it’s history.)

And then the photo shoot started with the amazingly talented Jen Maler. (See www.jenmaler.com.) Mollie and Jen made Bob try on everything she’d bought for him until they had a look they liked, which I enjoyed until they started on me and then I became Difficult, so I’m sure they wanted to smack me. And while I was refusing to wear the jewelry they’d brought, a very nice hair-and-make-up guy was straightening Bob’s hair. When I realized what was going on, I said, “Hold it.” I mean, that’s like looking at Chaplin and saying, “You know, we have to do something about those eyebrows.” Hundreds of women have swooned over that curly hair (while I cackled in the background); you do not get rid of it for a publicity shot. We’re trying to sell books here.

Of course, Mollie was in charge, so they straightened it anyway. During it all, Bob looked like my dog Bernie does when I’m giving him a bath. He hates it, he’s in hell, but he knows he’s trapped and he has to do it. I kept handing him beer all day and that helped, but he still looked at me like a kicked puppy. And the thing is, the pictures Jen took of him were fantastic, although she went nuts trying to get him to smile. Mollie said when she and Jen went through them, 90% of mine were unusable because I was talking or making faces or my head was out of the picture because I was lurching about, but almost all of Bob’s were good except that he had the exact same expression. Best line of the day: Jen to Bob: “You have the range of expression of Kevin Costner.”

But now everybody’s gone and we’re both exhausted and in bed although not together (see earlier blog entry: Things I’m Not). Bob’s in the living room on the sofa bed with the sliding doors to the dining room shut watching Firefly on his computer, and I’m in the bedroom with my sliding doors to the dining room shut answering my e-mail and typing this blog entry. Every now and then somebody e-mails me something that Bob needs copied on, and I e-mail it to him, and I can hear this little echo-y voice from the living room saying, “You’ve got mail!” Then I laugh. This is interspersed with Bob’s trips to the kitchen for more beer—he’s still recovering from the photo shoot—during which he says through the door between the kitchen and the bedroom, “You’re pathetic.”

Sometimes I think, maybe I shouldn’t write this stuff in the blog. If I kept my mouth shut, people would think I have an exciting, glamorous life. But then those other people start with the “Blog, blog, blog,” and I tell the truth. So like I said, this really isn’t a well-written entry, and I apologize for that. But by God, it’s a blog entry.

Now stop chanting and go away.

(Note: I wrote this last week and then couldn’t find my password to post it to Blogger. So to update: Bob likes his hair straight and wants to know how to keep it like that. Everybody went nuts for the pictures and SMP picked out one they love for the book jacket: I’m giddy with exhaustion and Bob’s smiling and looking relaxed with his chin on the table because it’s five o’clock and he’s been drinking since 10AM. We both got great solo head shots (for me, this is a miracle and I give Jen and Mollie all the credit) but the ones that are the most interesting are the ones nobody will see because we can’t use them because we’re making faces.

Like this:

Or this:

Or this:

But if you ever need a head shot done, call Jen Maler. She’s a genius with the patience of a saint who also gave me permission to post these on the blog for your amusement. Also, she’s good with picking out hairstyles; just look at Bob.)

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