Thursday, April 13, 2006

Learning the Rom Com

Take time to be sick. That's my maternal advice for the day. Oh sure, you can suppress cold and allergy symptoms for weeks with over the counter stuff but sooner or later, bacteria will win. It always does.

I am relatively certain that I cracked a rib this morning while coughing up a lung. I've gone through a myriad of pharmaceutical combinations but they knock me out for hours. Then, I wake to the indignant growls of my five pound Chorkie (Chichuachua/Yorkie), Toby, who loves to curl up under my chin while I sleep. Too bad for him that I drool in my drug induced sleep.

Yeah, I'm charming.

Toby has been particularly affectionate since his toenail got caught in the carpet and ripped open a bloody geyser. My boys took him to the vet while I cleaned up the blood and put clean sheets on my bed where Toby had sought refuge from that mean ol' carpet that bit his foot.

But, on to Rom Coms.

Billy Mernit's book, Writing the Romantic Comedy, arrived yesterday and the unexpected surprise here is that the book is not just a lot of opinions and observations about writing romantic comedy, it's somewhat of a course, complete with viewing assignments, essay questions and critical thinking exercises. This will take some time but appears to be just what I need -- if I'm serious about this -- and I am. So, I started reading the book right away and somewhere on page 21, fell fast asleep.

My boys woke me later to give me the vet's verdict and I swear, I could smell Old Spice on my pillowcase. No kidding. Those were clean sheets. I went to sleep reading Billy's book and woke up smelling tacky cologne. Weird. The romance thing was working on me already.

There are a lot of films listed in that book. So, after the Toby report, I glanced over the list and then went a different direction. I put Speechless in the VCR and promptly fell asleep. Yeah, I'm gonna learn a lot this way -- choose a Rom Com not on the list and then pass out.

I was floating in a "you're about to wake up" fog when Julia (Gina Davis' character) said something about Kevin (Michael Keaton's character) wearing a ton of cologne. Know what? He was! I could smell it! In his defense, Kevin had accidentally dumped a whole bottle of cologne in his lap while driving in the car but had he really spilled so much that it permeated from the television into my bedroom? Besides, it wasn't romantic. It smelled like a little old man you might bump into at the checkout counter.

No more sleeping. I got up, ate a bowl of soup, and glanced at report cards but I could hardly hold my head up so I went back to bed. Know what? I could still smell that old man's cologne! I put a clean case on my pillow and it tamed the manifestation enough for me to sleep. Even so, my dreams were a restless parade of black socks and Bermuda shorts.

I woke up this morning cursing that book, cursing Rom Coms and cursing my imagination which had stunk up my pillow again -- until I saw my son rubbing deodorant on the dog's bandaged foot. What the?? The vet had said it would keep Toby from gnawing on the bandages, the boy explained. Oh, okay. So much for my romanticism about old men in black socks and Bermuda shorts.

I went back to bed. I'm still there.

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