Mud Cats

My last post featured my dear friend reading one of his original poems.

This post features another dear friend reading one of my elementary school stories.

Listen to a 30-something-year-old man read a story written by a 7-year-old girl.

There’s more where that came from.

-Rachelcreeter

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Grapefruits Need Pruning and Blogs Need Naming

Now here is a book I’m sure you’ll really enjoy. It is called Seven Ways to Prune a GrapefruitIt’s a collection of poetry by one of (if not the) most delightful minds I have had the pleasure of knowing. Dr. Johnny Wink is a professor of English and Latin, a perpetual student of his wife’s Advanced Grammar class, and a real nice guy, to boot. He has been writing poems “for the sheer fun of it” many a year, now, and it’s high time his words were put back into print.

I encourage you to read this article to get an even stronger idea of the whimsical nature of Johnny Wink and the affection he inspires in all who come across him.

Then I encourage you to pre-order his book here, at the publisher’s website. They will only print as many books as they have orders for, and will be taking orders until August 19th. Unsettling Wonder is a British publisher, so it will ship from overseas if you are from North America. The total comes to £17.99, or approximately $28USD, and I have every confidence that it will be well worth it.

I was lucky enough to have Johnny Wink as a professor, mentor, and friend during my time at university. It makes my heart swell with gladness to know that now virtually anyone can be moved to giggles by his wit.

Johnny Wink was, in a way, the inspiration for the title of this very blog. Erin had asked me what we should name our joint endeavor, and I was at the time enrolled in the Charles Dickens course taught by Dr. Wink. It was a very small class, with only seven students—and all of us female. Being a small group, we were able to spend quite a bit of time bringing up our favorite quotations from our reading and having a good laugh (Dickens really is quite the chap for humor, in case you had gotten the impression he was all stuffy and didactic). One such session brought up this very quote from The Pickwick Papers (or its full title, The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club), which turned out to be my favorite Dickens novel.

“Rum creeters is women” was such an unusual phrase; we had to know what it meant. When it was explained that the dirty-faced man was declaring women to be strange creatures, our class knew we had to take ownership of that phrase immediately. Johnny Wink, who for the purposes of that class was nicknamed “Miss Peecher” after one of Dickens’ characters, took it even a step further and suggested we start an all-girl punk rock band called The Rum Creeters. Well, we never did start that punk rock band, but I wasn’t willing to let that phrase be closed in a book and put back on a shelf. So now here we are, the Rum Creeters (for we are all a bit rum, aren’t we?), thanks to one Johnny Wink.

Signing off for today,

Puella Fontanarum Calidarum
(my Latin nickname, bestowed by Miss Peecher himself)

This Just In…

I have to write a short story by Halloween. My friend Kris and I are writing buddies, and we’ve set ourselves the deadline of October 31 for exchanging short stories. The only guideline (besides a minimum of five pages) is to take something mundane and turn it into literary genius. So no pressure.

Almost everything I write is about the mundane, so I have no trouble there. My “epic” tends to turn into “implausible” and “unfinished” so I generally stick to the small stuff. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. My favorite authors are J.D. Salinger and Virginia Woolf, the masters of the anti-plot. They certainly set the bar extremely high. So no pressure.

-R

I Sing the Body Electric

This entry is a twofer! I’m putting a music video at the end, so it’ll count for Mix Tape Tuesday. Because I said so.

One of my most cherished friends gave me an iPod “just because.” She was able to get it for free after rebate and, since she had her own iPod already, decided I would appreciate it. Consider me thoroughly appreciative. I’m still in awe of how much love this woman has in her heart. Okay, I know that sounds cheesy, but there’s no uncheesy response to a gesture like that.

That being said, I’m quite proud of myself for coming up with the perfect engraving for the back of the iPod:

I Sing the Body Electric

It’s a reference to multiple things, it fits well in the context of a music player, and it’s a phrase that I’ve always found intriguing.

Poetry isn’t generally my cup of tea; I’m a prose girl. I have my fair share of favorite poets, as any English major ought, and I have penned my fair share of poems, as any writer ought. But for the most part I find I connect best with novels and short stories. That doesn’t, however, mean I cannot be passionate about a poem. And if ever there was a poem I was passionate about, it’s “I Sing the Body Electric” by Walt Whitman.

My first encounter with that phrase was through Rod Serling. (He is one of my heroes, but I will save my thoughts on him for another entry.) It is the title of an episode of The Twilight Zone written by Ray Bradbury (another of my favorite authors), adapted from his short story of the same title. I highly recommend both watching the episode and reading the story.

That’s all I have to say about that.

-Rachel

P.S. And now for something completely different, does this video remind anyone else of The Adventures of Pete & Pete?

“Rue the Day” by Young Knives, from their album Superabundance (2008).

Enter Title Here

Oh good Lord, it’s Wednesday again, isn’t it? And I promised I would stay on track this time.

Here’s a short little post, to let everyone know I’m not falling into the abyss again.

A snippet of something I’ve been writing:

“Do you sometimes wonder if, because of all the technology and electricity today, if someone from several centuries ago were to suddenly be transplanted in modern times, his or her head would literally explode from all the radiation and white noise its not used to?”

“No, I can honestly say I’ve never wondered about that.”

“But you are now, though, eh?”

“It certainly would make time travel a bitch. ‘Hey, Socrates, come inside my phone booth and help me get an A in history — oops.’”

“That’s one adventure that is decidedly less than excellent.”

And next Wednesday I promise I’ll write a post that doesn’t make any reference to its lateness, or my laziness, or anything for which I feel the need to apologize.

<3
Rachel