Friday, September 5, 2014

School Days

I returned to college last week. I actually LOVE going to college. I love the ideas, the knowledge, the ability to be anything you want...

Of course I am far to old to start over learning something I might one day make a career. I have a family, a child, I am the sole full time worker, everyone relies on my job to survive. Thus, my college education must follow a path that enables me to move ahead in my current position.

That's fine because I still get to attend classes and LEARN more things!!! Since I've been busy doing homework the past two weeks and my time to write her will be limited, I am going to post some of my previous writings. I'll post clips of stories I'm working on and you can see what you might want to read more of? Maybe in the midst of all this schooling, I'll get a novel completed!

This is an excerpt from my novel "Fat Linda". I have been "working" on this book for many years now. Unfortunately, I just do not make the time I need to finish it. I love this book. I have the story outlined in my head fairly well but I just haven't sat down to complete it. So perhaps with you reading it, I'll make progress...

Happy Readings! 
I always knew Linda was a fat chic’s name. For as long as I could remember the name Linda was associated with fat women; big women who dressed in moo-moo’s and smelled like moth balls. Where I arrived at this knowledge I cannot fathom but in my head if I was named Linda, which I was, I would someday be fat.
      I spent most of my youth and teen years fighting against this idea. Exercise, running and swimming mostly became my “hobbies’” as my somewhat older parents called them. I was loved by them but I was also an aberration. My father was an academic. I grew up in a small college town, full of innocent college fun. It was the 70’s but a college town in the Midwestern United States didn’t have much turmoil. We didn’t have protests, drugs weren’t all that prominent and the craziest thing to happen was when Old Man Crumpent set his barn on fire because the new horse he’d just bought weren’t providing baby calves for him to train into race horses. I have no idea why after years of being a cattle farmer he suddenly want to train thoroughbreds and truthfully I didn’t care much. I enjoyed the story though. I was happy, I studied, I did okay in school. There was no way I was going to school anywhere but the University. My father taught there for his whole academic career, I’d go there for nothing, I’d be accepted. My mother threw the faculty party every year. There wasn’t a doubt in anyone’s mind where I belonged.
      Suffice it to say, my guaranteed college acceptance meant that I didn’t have to study as much. University was a great school, had several sports championships, sent a few boys to the NFL, had a decent theater program, I think one of the graduates in from 1965 went on to write a play that won a Tony Award, we had a few scientists and writers... All around it was an excellent Midwestern school in an excellent Midwestern town. It epitomized America of the 50’s and 60’s. I was proud to belong there and never imagined anything else. I’d go to school, maybe I’d get a decent job somewhere in the big city, a few hours east of us but I would probably come back to small town America, get married, raise a family... and I would stay thin. Foremost in my mind I wouldn’t ever become Fat Linda.
      Looking back all these years later I sometimes wonder if I didn’t create my own worst nightmare. I mean I did in the end but many times I can’t help but wonder did my obsessions with being fat and staying thin cause the other god awful things that broke my life in half? It’s not possible that just because I always worried about being fat that somehow I created a vortex that captured my life and spun it out of control is it???
      Sitting where I sit today and thinking back 30 years, it’s to imagine anything than what now Malays me but then again it’s hard to re-capture any essence of youth and happiness that prevails us when the whole world is at our fingertips...
       “Linda, Linda, are you up there?” I heard my mother’s voice loud and clear, how could I not? She was a trained speaker, she had a public voice, and it sounded like caramel that drips out of a chocolate bar. I didn’t begrudge her charming ways with people, I just wish I couldn’t pick up on them so keenly. If she was using her “Professor’s Wife Voice” it could only mean one thing. We had company and not just any company but someone important to the school, or my father’s career or the community or the hospital where my mom was a board member... either way it meant my afternoon day dream was out of the question. I smoothed out my typical plaid Catholic school girl skirt, ran a come through my hair, sealed my lips with clear gloss and made my way downstairs. Far easier to be prepared and wrong then look like a slob and get “The look” from my mother.
      I quietly made my way down the stairs of our modest split level home. It was newly decorated in the colors of the season. My mother indulged in her creative streak every few years by repainting and rearranging furniture and curtains to keep the house looking interesting. With so many college people coming through every year, my mother felt it her duty that “The Professor’s” house was up to par with the ideals of the university people. My mother was bucking for my father to become Dean of Literary Sciences one day soon. What the hell a literary science was and how it made the world a better place I couldn’t tell you but it seemed my mother had worked her whole life to be the wife of Doctor Kline- Dean of Literary Sciences, Midwestern University...

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