For those parents who are on bit on the paranoid side about your little ghosts and goblins being poisoned, molested, or anything horrible happening to them this weekend, read the article by Lenore Skenazy in the Wall Street Journal on why Halloween is one of the safest days of the year for your kids.
With Halloween falling on Sunday this year, it seems like many kiddies will be trick-or-treating on Saturday instead. Why this irritates some people is beyond me. I really don’t care if kids trick-or-treat on Saturday or Sunday. I’ll be handing out candy either day.
Some people are wondering if an age limit should be imposed on trick-or-treaters. I don’t remember talk of an age limit when I was a kid but generally everyone I grew up with stopped trick-or-treating by ninth grade. Marathon Girl grew up in a home where you couldn’t trick-or-treat after you were 12. I don’t know about enforcing an age limit but I do admit I find it annoying to see a 16 year old trick-or-treating. I’d think by that age they’d have more fun at Halloween parties.
Cool pictures of The Walking Dead in Sofia, Bulgaria. I wish they would have had cool things like that going on when I lived there.
As a kid I remember me and other kids wearing masks to school on Halloween. Yet it seems like in the last decade masks have become a big no-no. Anyone have any insight as to why?
My kids: Batman, Robin, Princess Tiana, and a skunk. Me: A grumpy middle-aged writer. Marathon Girl: Herself, though I wish she’d give one of those sexy Halloween costumes a try. She has a great body for it.
The answer is no. Abstinence doesn’t guarantee that a widower won’t up and leave you anymore than sleeping with a widower guarantees he’ll be there for you tomorrow.
When it comes to getting involved with a widower phyically or emotionally, my advice has always been to take things slow. Most widowers—especially recent widowers—are quick to commit to relationships before they’re emotionally ready. As a result it’s not uncommon for them to end relationships as soon as things heat up. Taking your time in the early stages of the relationship with a widower can save you some heartache if the relationship comes to an unexpected. Taking things slow give you a good chance to learn if the widower’s ready to move on and start a new life with you or simply looking for someone to keep him warm at night. Widowers who are looking for an easy score or not ready for a serious relationship will have a hard time holding back if you put off his advances until you’re sure of his intentions.
When you decide to become physical with a widower is ultimately up to the two of you. Just keep in mind that the second most common issue in my inbox is from women who feel used and taken advantage of after sleeping with widowers only to be unceremoniously dumped soon after. If that’s something you want to avoid, take your time before sleeping with a widower.
Just got The Third‘s release date from publisher. The book should start hitting bookstores shelves or coming to an e-reader near you in April 2011. The official release date for the book, however, is April 22 – Earth Day but it will probably be available to buy before then.
For those you who are familiar with the content of the book, I can’t begin say how happy the official release date makes me. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate that day. I’m going to have fun, fun, fun with this.
A pregnant woman in south China was detained, beaten and forced to have an abortion just a month before her due date because the baby would have violated the country’s one-child limit, her husband said Thursday.
Construction worker Luo Yanquan said his wife was taken kicking and screaming from their home by more than a dozen people on Oct. 10 and detained in a clinic for three days by family planning officials, then taken to a hospital and injected with a drug that killed her baby.
Family planning officials told the couple they weren’t allowed to have the child because they already have a 9-year-old daughter, Luo said.
For the last 30 years, China has limited most urban couples to just one child in a bid to curb population growth and conserve its limited resources. China has the world’s largest population, with more than 1.3 billion people. Couples that flout the rules face hefty fines, seizure of their property and loss of their jobs.
Note: This is the first installment of Widower Wednesday. Each Wednesday I’ll be addressing common widower issues that come into my inbox. If you’d like to suggest a topic or ask a question, send me an email.
It seems the topic in my inbox this week has centered on widowers who talk about their late wife their past relationships. Women want to know whether this is normal behavior and when the widower will start talking about the present and future instead of the past.
Yes, it’s normal for widowers to talk about the late wife and their life together. This need to talk about the late wife and their past life together often helps make the transition from the old to new life. As widowers make room in their heart for a new woman, the topics of conversation should evolve from the past to you and your future together.
Since everyone grieves differently, when he starts to make this transition depends on the person. Some widowers can do it in a matter of weeks; with others it takes a bit longer. As a rule of thumb, if you’ve been with someone for six months and they’re still talking about the past and showing no interest in talking about you or your future together, I’d be very concerned whether or not the widower is ready to move on.
Another red flag to watch for is widowers who constantly talk about the late wife. One of the recent emails I received said just about any topic of conversation was tied in to what the late wife liked or thought about a certain subject. This seems to go beyond a healthy talking about the past. Deciding what to have for dinner, for example, shouldn’t turn conversation about what the late wife liked or didn’t like to eat. If the widower is making her a part of every conversation you have, it’s a sign he’s still grieving and not ready to start a new life with you.
This fall I’ve taken my kids to three college football games. One of the unintended consequences of this activity is that they think I don’t know a darn thing about how to play the game.
Take Saturday, for example. I take the kids to the park so we can play football. I divide everyone up into teams and hand the ball to my oldest kid. He gives me a quizzical look and hands the ball back to me.
“We can’t play yet,” he says.
“Why not?” I reply.
“Because we haven’t run out of the tunnel yet,” he says matter-of-factly.
Now it’s my turn to give him a quizzical look. “What are you talking about?”
“Before the game starts the players run out of the tunnel and you say what team you’re playing for.”
Now I get it. At the games I’ve taken them to, the teams run out of tunnels on the other side of the field. He wants to do the same thing.
“OK,” I say, “run out of the tunnel.
He and his brother run around the park and yell “Denver Broncos!” at the top of their lungs. They run back to me and I hand the ball to him.
“Hike the ball,” I said.
“We can’t Dad,” he said. “You haven’t run out of the tunnel yet.”
“I don’t need to—“
“All the teams run out of the tunnel,” he says. “Oh, and you’re the Indianapolis Colts.”
The Colts? I don’t want to be the Colts. I open my mouth to object but realize it could be worse. He could have asked me to be the Oakland Raiders.
So me and my daughter run around the field and let the world know we’re the Colts. When I get back to the ling of scrimmage the oldest hands me the ball.
“You start,” I tell him.
“No, Dad. You need to kick the ball to us.”
“They kick the ball off to start the game,” he says as tosses me the ball.
The kickoff. How could I forget that?
I walk back to the goal line. My boys back up. I kick the ball over their heads. Laughing, they both run after it. My oldest picks up the ball and I wrestle him to the ground. He jumps up and gets ready to hike the ball to his brother.
“We’re going to get a touchdown!” he says before hiking the ball.
I first heard about National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) back in 2002. I thought it was a cool idea to try to write a novel in a month. But since I was in a critical relationship month with Marathon Girl, I told myself I’d do it next year. The next year came and I was in the middle of slogging through the first draft of my memoir. It wasn’t a project I could rush so I pushed it off another year. Every November after it seemed like I was working another writing project that couldn’t be rushed, in the middle of edits with a publisher, or had just finished a novel and was too burned out to start a new project.
This year, however, the wrings stars have aligned. The final manuscript of The Third has been sent to the publisher, the second round of the Dating a Widower guide is just about done, and I have an outline for a novel that I wrote over the summer that’s screaming to be started. In short not only am I ready to write the first draft of a novel in a month, I’m positive I can do it.
The goal, at least for me, isn’t to write a publishable manuscript in 30 days. If I didn’t have a fulltime job, a family, and other responsibilities, I could probably come close to cranking out a publishable manuscript in 30 days. My NaNoWriMo goal is to simply write an approximate 80,000 word first draft. If I could do that, I could probably have an editable manuscript by the end of the year.
For those who want to track my NaNoWriMo progress, I’ll add a widget to my home page and the side bar of this blog November 1. (I’d add them now but NaNoWriMo isn’t going to make any of their widgets available until November 1.)
Finally, if any readers or writing friends are giving NaNoWriMo a shot, leave a comment or email me your handle and I’ll add you to my NaNoWriMo buddy list. If you want to add me, my NaNoWriMo handle is abelkeogh.
Quick update on the status of the Dating a Widower guide. All the feedback from beta readers was received last week. I appreciate all of them taking the time to read it and give me their thoughts. Though the overall feedback was positive, several beta readers expressed concerns that the book was a little off the mark of what it was trying to accomplish. After taking time to review everything, I’ve decided to rewrite certain sections of the book before it goes to press.
So, the book is still on track to come out this year, but with all the rewriting that needs to be done, the release date is going to be pushed back until November. And, yes, I’ll still need about 10 people or so to review the second version. Email me if you’re interested in reviewing the new book.
On the upside, I was finally able to find someone who actually knows how to design book covers. I’m hoping to have it finalized no later than next week. I’ll post it here as soon as it’s ready to go.
Thanks again to all those who took the time to read it and give me feedback.
The scene: A waiting area at a car dealership. I’ve brought my laptop so I can write while I wait. An older gentleman with a thick book in his hand takes the seat next to me and glances at my computer screen.
Old Man: What you writing, your memoirs?
Me: I already wrote my memoir. I’m working on a novel.
Old Man: ~laughs~ “That’s a good one!”
The old man slaps me on the knee, stands up, and walks away.
Update: The guy turned out to be really cool. After he come back to the waiting area we ended up talking. Turns out he’s an avid readers and got a kick out of meeting a writer. On his way out the door he told everyone else in the waiting room to buy both my books.