• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies When I set out to learn about my mother's bridge club, the Jewish octogenarians behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, their gen, and the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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L.A. Confidential – Day 2

Last night, getting on to the Santa Monica Boulevard, I accidentally went over a divider. Cars behind me came to a screeching halt. I thought if I die now, I want everyone to know that deep inside this miserable wretch is a person who is happy and has been loved. The screeching was followed by a great deal of honking as traffic diverted around my rented Dodge Ram.

I would be lost without my GPS system. I am truly a menace on the road and it’s terrifying trying to get to meetings on time and then to park. Today, I blindly parked in a valet section and went away with the keys. For the first five minutes of every meeting, I have to sit on my hands to stop them from trembling. I also love it when the pretty assistant (and they are all pretty) asks, “Do you need to be validated?” Oh, honey, if you only knew.

Star Meter: 1  Josh Duhamel (does he even count?)

15 Responses

  1. When people say “do you need to be validated?” I always say “Yes. Every single day,” and then the pretty assistants (or makeup counter people or hostesses)–and I’m from L.A. and can vouch that they are all always pretty–usually just look at me with those beautiful bovine expressions that I would pay CASH MONEY to learn to emulate.

    Josh Duhamel definitely counts.

  2. This post was the funniest thing that happened to me all day.

  3. I think I need to go to LA, because I need non-stop validation.

  4. Growing up in LA, I drove Santa Monica Blvd a lot and totally know the divider you are talking about. Way back, it used to have train tracks on it.

    Hope your trip gets better and contains more stars!

  5. I also can’t stand to drive in strange cities. Not to mention park. I won’t even drive in downtown PHOENIX, which is probably the equivalent of Santa Monica.

  6. I am so glad to have this information. I’ll definitely be the one driving if we ever hang out together in LA.

  7. Oh, jeez. Judging by how many female friends I have who swoon over that Duhamel character, I’d say he counts. But just barely. I think you gave him the right rating.

    “Do you need to be validated?”


    I was on my way back to college and I (somehow) tried to enter the freeway on an exit ramp in Nehi, Utah. So there I am, driving up a hill, half off the asphalt, wondering how come all these cars are coming at me the wrong way, and how come there aren’t any lanes open.

    Still not sure how I got out of there. Fortunately I turned back before I actually entered the freeway.

    I have a rather basic question, ma’am. I’m a newbie to the publishing scene, with a first novel written and a manuscript of 51,000 words undergoing a second edit. I’d like to get it published before the year’s out. What’s the first thing I need to do? Finish editing it? Or start writing queries now and blasting them all over the place?

    • You’re kidding right? Unless you self-publish it, it will never come out this year. Also, you haven’t even sent it out yet. Get ready for a tidal wave of indifference and rejection unless you are the needle in the haystack. Writing and getting fiction published is a long process and you’ve got to be in it for the long haul If you want immediate gratification, blog. And thanks for reading mine.

      • It’s inspiring to read how Mapplethorpe kept getting rejected over and over, but he continued making the rounds of galleries because he believed in himself and his work. Yes, it’s a long process!

  8. I too am directionally challenged and need GPS. But even GPS can be dangerous, once it lead us up a dead end road in the snow and my husband had to back out. We were in an area with no cellphones – could have been the plot of a novel like – they never came back. Our frozen bodies could have been discovered years later. I think you need GPS and 4 wheel drive and someone who can back out of a one lane road. I am glad you survived your ordeal.

  9. One wouldn’t think it possible, but I love you even more after this post.

    Spring for a cab!

  10. I just moved back to the west coast from NYC and nothing, literally nothing scares me more than parallel parking. Except maybe getting lost in the suburbs. Every time that happens I feel like I’m in the opening sequence of a horror movie…”maybe I’ll just got ask the people in this house for directions…”

  11. Before I moved here someone told me, “if you can drive there you can drive anywhere.” Clearly not the same as making it.

    Years later I still tremble driving into the trapped parts of town–neighborhoods shoved up against house heavy hills, criss crossed with narrow too busy two lane roads through jay walking blips of commercial district. Who’s coming? Who’s going? Who the hell can tell.

    Be Brave Betsy and meet me for lunch next time you are out.

  12. I’m glad you are okay. Be safe.

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