Tuesday, September 30, 2008

For Moonie and friend

I am putting up this post in support of my dear friend Moonrat. Please take a moment and consider buying a raffle for this important cause and in the process you may win a wonderful prize. I have had the pleasure of seeing firsthand Moonrat's excellent editing skills. It would cost you over $600 to hire a professional editor and you may or may not get the quality editing that Moonie provides so if you have a manuscript or a query letter, please buy a raffle. The chance of winning is well worth the small donation you will make for an important cause.

The following information is from The Mischief Fights Cancer Raffle Site

From Moonrat:

Dear Beloved Blogging Fellows,

Recently, a friend of mine was diagnosed with Stage IV lymphoma. She is only 28 and is fighting back hard, but her valor is frustrated by the fact that she has no insurance. Medicaid will be kicking in for her in about a month, but in the meantime there are some hurdles that nothing will help her get over but money.

Of course, there are lots of benefits and pots for me to throw money in. Alas... I work in publishing and have no money. I was bemoaning this to my darling Ello, and she thought of this fantastic idea: I should raffle off my editorial services. So that's what we're going to try here.


Prizes available:

-One winner: A full manuscript evaluation (up to 120,000 words)*
-One winner: A partial manuscript evaluation (up to 50 page)*
-One winner: A query letter and revised query letter critique*
-Five winners: A choice from select titles in Moonrat's library, which will be mailed with a love letter from Moonrat, who enjoys writing love letters
I've started this new, temporary blog to host a raffle for my friend. You can buy tickets, check the donation log, and see how much progress has been made on each of the raffled lots here.

*please note: these are critiques with an eye toward editorial suggestions, and will in no way be considered submissions to me or my company

General Guidelines (and my very best attempts to make the whole process honest and transparent)

-The raffle will run between now, Tuesday, September 30th, and 8 pm on Tuesday, October 7th, when lots will be drawn.

-Winners will be announced (or their anonymous IDs, if they prefer) on Editorial Ass no later than 11:59 pm on Tuesday, October 7th.

-Prizes have no expiration date--you can ask for your prize redemption anytime between now and, well, I guess 2020.

-Turnaround time for prize redemption is 2 weeks (i.e. if you send me your manuscript on the 1st of November, I'll need until the 15th to get you my comments).

-All prizes are transferable. If you do not have a query letter that needs critiquing but you have a friend who does, you can gift your winning prize on your friend.

-On top of the instant confirmation email from PayPal, you will receive a confirmation email from me by midnight on the calendar day on which you purchased your raffle ticket. My email to you will include your lot number(s).

-On my end, lot numbers will be written on highly scientific bits of paper, which will be dropped into one of four of the rally monkey's highly scientific baseball hats. Lots will be drawn from each hat at 8 pm on Tuesday, October 7.

-You will have the option to purchase raffle tickets under your real name or an anonymous ID. You may specify a code name or number upon receiving my confirmation email.

-I've opened a PayPal account, which will allow you and me both to maintain our identities. PayPal is free for you and only charges me $.30 and 3% off each transaction.

-All raffle ticket purchasers will be fully and publicly disclosed for accountability purposes. At midnight each day the raffle is active, the names (or anonymous IDs, if you choose not to have your name listed) of all the people who purchased raffle tickets for a particular lot will be listed in separate recorded posts. When you buy a raffle ticket, please check the name roster the next day to make sure your name is up. If it's not, email me ASAP at moonratty@gmail.com and we'll straighten it out.

-Again, for accountability, I have opened up a separate bank account that will receive nothing but PayPal payments for this one raffle. A record of the balance will be available for anyone who requests it. The entire account will be emptied at the end of the raffle, and our proud balance will be prominently displayed on Ed Ass.

Random funny things my kids say - Part 14

The kids have found my blog! And they have been reading the random funny stuff and I am going to have to clean up the rest pronto. But the girls are loving reading the old stories and funny things that they have done in the past. When I see how much of a kick they are getting over reading these stories and ragging on each other for their past actions, I'm glad I have done this. Now they are really hamming it up and even demanding I write about some of their past exploits. But I won't tell the funny stories they want me to tell. No, I'll tell the ones that I think are funny. Like this past Sunday.

We were at church and I reminded the older two that they needed to pay attention to the sermon. The Youngest is pretty good at church as long as she has paper and pen to draw on. The older two tend to have a hard time sitting still in church most times but they did pretty well this time and I applauded their effort and asked them about the sermon.

"So do you remember what the sermon was about today?" I asked.

"Uh, uh..." Oldest looked completely blank.

"It was about two sons!" Angus piped up all excited and happy.

"Good and what about the two sons?" I asked.

"Uh, uh..." Oldest is still lost.

"They was supposed to work in the fields," Angus said.

"Good, and then what happened," I asked.

Complete quiet as we walked in the parking lot to the car.

"Come on, who was listening, the father asked his sons to go work in the field and what happened?"

No answer from anyone, we are almost at the car.

"One son said No but repented and went to work while the other said Yes but never went to work," I continued. "And then what happened."

"God punished them!" Angus said.

"No, that is not the point of the sermon," I said. "What is the point? Anyone?"

They are still quiet and so I try to remind them of the finer points of the sermon as we get into the car.

"So if the youngest son said Yes father, but then never followed through, then he didn't do the will of his father even though he said he would. So what is the moral of the story?" I asked one last time.

"Shut up and just do it!" Youngest shouted. The other two shrieked in laughter and I am just staring at the little one as if she had sprouted two heads. She smiled and then said. "That's what the priest should have said! Then everyone woud have known what he was talking about."

Friday, September 26, 2008

Another meme...

The lovely Kim Kasch has tagged me with the following meme:

1. What are your nicknames?

Ello, E, Ell, Boss.

2. What game show and/or reality show would you like to be on?

None. I only like to watch the pain and suffering of my fellow man, I don't actually want to participate in it!

3. What was the first movie you bought in VHS or DVD?

On VHS - The Princess Bride. On DVD - Gladiator.

4. What is your favorite scent?


5. If you had a million dollars that you could only spend on yourself, what would you do with it?

That's for me to know and Da Man to never never find out!!

6. What one place have you visited that you can't forget and want to go back to?


7. Do you trust easily?

I'm from New York. Does that answer this question?

8. Do you generally think before you act, or act before you think?

I'm a thinker not an actor.

9. Is there anything that has made you unhappy these days?

Da Man has yet to bring up the desk for the girls to do their homework on. It is now going on over a year and I am at the end of my patience. I'm thinking of fraying all of his fishing line at strategic spots.

10. Do you have a good body image?

Only when I look at my feet.

11. What is your favorite fruit?

Mangoes and cherries - even though I'm terribly allergic to cherries I love them to death and eat them through my swollen lips and tongue.

12. What websites do you visit daily?

Lately I'm not on anything daily, which is good because I'm busy. It's been crazy busy for me and I am missing out on all my favorite spots!

13. What have you been seriously addicted to lately?

Chocolate covered macadamia nuts. Oh they are so good!

14. What kind of person do you think the person who tagged you is?

Awesome lady with a beautiful soul - you can see it in her posts and in her smile.

15. What's the last song that got stuck in your head?

Gimme Shelter - Rolling Stones, cause it's my ringtone!

16. What's your favorite item of clothing?

My jeans.

17. Do you think Rice Krispies are yummy?

Actually, no. I'm not a marshmallow fan and there's no chocolate!

18. What would you do if you saw $100 lying on the ground?

If no one was standing anywhere near it, I'd grab it and do a little Woo Hoo I found money happy dance. If someone was standing right near me, I'd ask them if they dropped any money and see if they can tell me which president is on it. If they say the wrong president, even if it is their money, I get to keep it cause they're an idiot.

19. What items could you not go without during the day?

My laptop.

20. What should you be doing right now?

Revising. Alright, alright! I'm going!

No tags! But do share...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Random Funny Things My Kids Say - Part 13

"Mommy? The weather is good this week don't you think?" Youngest asks.

"Uh huh," I reply.

"Let's go to Hopeless Beach!" she shouts.

"Hopeless beach? What the heck is that!" Angus shouts out.

"HOPELESS Beach! You know the one with the rides and the big lollipops..." Youngest says.

"Oh you mean Rehobeth Beach!" Oldest cuts in. "It's Rehobeth, say Rehobeth."

"Re - hopeless beach," Youngest says, trying very seriously.

"Ruuuuh Hohhhhh Bethhhhhh, Ruuuuuh Hohhhh Bethhhhh." Oldest is sounding it out for her.

"Ruuuuh Hole Besssssssssss," Youngest says.

"No - Rehobeth!"




"Gah!! Forget it! It's hopeless!" Oldest shouts.

Youngest is absolutely indignant. "But that's what I've been saying this whole time!!!"

Monday, September 22, 2008

Pretty as a Hanbok!

So you might have noticed a change in the decor around here. If you wondered at the bright stripes framing the blog, it is to mirror the sleeves of a korean hanbok. I've posted an example of one below. This one is from a Korean museum and probably represents a wedding hanbok. The top photo is the front view and the bottom is of the back.

Copyright Momboleum via Creative Commons license via Flickr.com

Here's one of a child's hanbok - worn for the all important first birthday celebration.

Historically, the hanbok dates as far back as 57B.C., as evidenced by wall murals found in the burial sites of ancient kings. Personally I find hanboks incredibly beautiful and much more comfortable than the Japanese kimono. Let's compare:

Copyright Okinawa Soba via Creative Commons license via Flickr.com

See how the kimono wraps very tight and narrow around the woman's boy? I have worn a kimono, there is no way to take a normal step in that narrow skirt. You have to mince forward, taking baby steps, causing you to feel as if you will topple over and fall flat on your face. The obi is tied so tight around the waist to insure that no woman will overeat while the breasts are flattened to shape the incredibly sexy form of a number 2 pencil. Due to the tightness of the kimono, you cannot run. You can perhaps waddle very quickly, but it may cause you to tilt from side to side so drastically that caution is advised when in a hurry. With much practice over many, many years, a fast trot can be achieved. You must retain a perfectly straight-backed and balanced torso even as your feet move in a road runner like blur. And what the heck is up with that samurai hairstyle? Let me clarify that I love the look of the kimono (not the hair though). I think it is an elegant and incredibly beautiful outfit which also doubles as an instrument of torture. However, if flesh eating zombies are after me, I would be ripping that thing off and running in my skivvies.

Now let's compare the Korean hanbok.

Copyright by photoren via Creative Commons license via Flickr.com

You can't help but notice immediately the wide flowing skirts, right? Now here's a skirt you can run in! Here's a skirt you can kick a man in the tenders in! Since I own several hanboks I can assure you that the skirts are flowing, comfortable pieces that make you feel like absolute royalty. And the hair is tied back in a simple bun with some beautiful accessories to compliment it. Now granted, the hanbok does have the chest flattening top. For some reason, Koreans believe that the hanbok looks better if it is draped over a flat chest. So if you happen to be busty, the nice hanbok lady will try to smush you flat with a tight undergarment tied so tight that you may need an oxygen tank. But hey, at least your legs are free!

So why are we talking about hanboks? Well I wanted to share a little excerpt from my book and it just so happens to be a description of a hanbok.

General Kang and Lieutenant Lee walked out together, to where their men waited for instructions. As they left, the anxious Queen stopped them, her long curtain of ebony hair swept down her back nearly to her heels. She wore a light green satin hanbok with red silk trim over a full brown skirt. Lee couldn’t help but notice that her robe had the characters for luck embroidered in gold all over the shoulders and sleeves. He smiled grimly - for luck, it seemed, had abandoned them.

So what is the book about? Well it is what I would call historical fantasy based in ancient Korea during a time where there were many small kingdoms, but no unified country. It is about a young prince faced with the invasion of his home and an old prophecy that calls for a savior he may or may not be. It utilizes East Asian mythology and legends while working off of the historical times of the late 300 AD period. Stay tuned for more to come.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

New blog title

You guys are so funny! I was cracking up over some of these suggestions. I really liked Ello's World but it is too close to Elmo's World and I wouldn't want a typing error sending little kids looking for the little red monster and finding an angry piggy instead. You Had Me At Ello was really looking good for a while until Precie pointed out that it looked like You had Meat Ello - which either made me a serious carnivore (which I am) or had an altogether separate reference which I shall scrupulously avoid - after all, I am trying to clean up my act here.

Lots of Beatles references were all shot down by Lana who hates the Beatles (gasp!) and Ello There was countered with Ello Here which cancelled them both out. Ello Me Pretties cracked me up but I think if I titled my blog with that, I'd have to change my piggy into a parrot. Elloicious and Ellos Bellows were very cute and I loved Ellocution - except it was a little too close to Execution. Ello Kitty is great but I may have copyright issues and To Ell-en Back is Too Clever and funny but a little to Ellish!

So after waffling like a weak minded politician for an hour, I have decided to change this blog title to Hello Ello because it is simple (possibly boring) but not at all controversial in any way. However, I was looking into the issue of changing the url on the blog and it seems like it is more trouble than it is worth so the blog url will stay randomactsofunkindness.blogspot.com and the blog title will be Hello Ello, thanks Cindy for pointing this out to me!

In the next couple of days I will post some interesting new stuff about my book and related information that you may or may not find fascinating - and I will explain why the new blog look also. So watch out for some interesting stuff.

And since I used my own title, I shall now go and buy something very expensive and sparkly with Da Man's credit card while he is on his all day man bonding fishing trip extravaganza.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Help an Ello out

Thanks to everyone for all your wonderful comments. I was once again overwhelmed by the amazing support and caring of our wonderful blogging community!

Now I have lots to do! Finish grading papers, revise my manuscript for my Dream Agent (see how I snuck that in? it sounds so good!), set up a website, and all the other life's essentials that pile onto our days. So I will be really busy! But one thing I need to consider is changing the title of my blog. Random Acts of Unkindness was always a sarcastic title that I put up when I first started blogging. But now that I am a serious writer (who snickered?) I need to reconsider my web presence and think about changing the title. Right now the only title that I can come up with is "Hello Ello" or "Ello There" or "You had me at Ello." (Who groaned?) So let's have a little contest here. Feel free to leave me your suggestion for a brand new title for my blog. Something fun but not over the top. Something cute but not too cutesy. Something creative but not too artsy fartsy. Feel free to vote for a blog title if you aren't creative enough yourself. The winning title will receive a nice gift from me. That includes me. I get to buy myself a nice gift if I pick my own title. Hear that Da Man? Be warned. It may be sparkly. (For me only! If someone else wins, no sparklies for you!)

So come on everyone, impress me with some great blog titles!!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My mood in pictures

This is how I felt for a very long time.

This is how I feel now.


And now for something completely different...

The right Palin:

Monday, September 15, 2008

Attack of the Trolls

Lately I have had a few random troll attacks on older blog posts that are still hanging out there on the blogosphere. Usually I laugh it off and click delete. The last one was a particularly nasty attack on me and my kids and that one really got under my skin. I hate to admit it, as I know it only gives trolls ammunition to know that one of their nasty barbs actually penetrated. Seriously, trolls can say any nasty thing they want about me and it doesn't bug me. But I do not take well to attacks on my family and friends. That I don't tolerate. If you are mad at me because you don't agree with my view, and you want to make a personal attack because you are not too bright, then by all means make the personal attack. I don't care what you say about me. But don't be stupid and talk trash about my kids. That just ain't right.

So let's analyze the psychology of a troll. They can be very smart or very stupid. They can be snakes in the grass or sledghammer waving thugs. But the one thing they all have in common is malicious hatred of others. Just look at the nastiness that oozes from the recent troll comment:

I don't know how to break this to you, but a lot of people hate your kids
too. I'm one of them. There were a few times that they were walking by me that I
just wanted to kick them. Scratch that, I wanted to kick their mother who has
taught them to be loud, pick their nose in the street, cough in my face on the
subway, and scream on airplanes. Some of us were wise enough to not get knocked
up on prom night, so we don't want to have to deal with your disgusting kids or
the filth they leave in this city either.

Fozziebare13's comment is the epitome of a pitiful hatred of the human race. Fozzie's been terribly hurt by people, can't you just see? Fozzie was probably that kid no one wanted on their dodgeball team. Probably the weird greasy looking kid that wore really bad clothes and had a thick coat of dandruff on their shoulders. You know the one no one would go near because they smelled bad and everyone thought you'd catch cooties from them. Poor fozziebare13!

After my initial burst of ifIevermeetyouI'llripyourheartoutthroughyourthroat, I felt a terrible pity for this poor creature. After all, not all trolls are born trolls. Some are made into trolls by bad life expereinces. Just read between the lines. He or she was an unwanted child. Fozzie's parents must have mistreated Fozzie terribly. Alchoholics who ignored and then verbally abused poor Fozzie just because Fozzie wasn't the brightest and was a bit hard on the eyes. This is heartbreaking! I feel so sad for Fozzie! I see this posting as a plea for help. A call out to others to see the sadness and the need for someone, anyone to love them.

Too bad it can't be me. I don't like trolls. They smell and are never as bright as they think they are. And they are the biggest party poopers in the entire world. Their negative force could blot out the sun. I don't like trolls because I want to live my life with positive harmony, not miserable negativity. So to all the trolls out there, go find another bridge to poop on. You can leave me as many nasty messages as you want, I'll delete them just as fast. But I hope one day you trolls will find some happiness in life that will transform you back into humans.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Dancing flowergirls

Pictures deleted due to Trolls.

Here's Angus and Youngest dancing together at a friend's wedding. All three of the girls were flowergirls but Oldest was too shy to dance. Angus and Youngest spent the whole night dancing together, at times they were the only ones on the dance floor! I would have joined them but I wore stupid shoes that are pretty and painful and by this point I was barely hobbling. That's Angus dipping Youngest. As you can see they had a great time.

Youngest is friend's with the ringbearer, an adorable little boy from her school. She announced during the rehearsal dinner that the ringbearer was her boyfriend. However, there was another little girl there, who was not a flowergirl, but was at dinner. Apparently this little girl declared that the ringbearer was her boyfriend, and shoved Youngest away. Youngest came crying over to me. The first lesson I tried to instill in her was to never cry over a boy.

"Yeah cause they are poopoo heads!" Angus chimes in.

"And they stink!" Oldest says.

"Yeah, poopoo heads!" Youngest says gleefully, her tears all dried up. She thinks for a minute and says, "Poor Mommy, she has to sleep with a stinky boy everynight. I know! Mommy you should sleep with us everynight instead and let Daddy sleep by himself!"

"But Daddy's not a stinky boy is he?" I ask.

"Well," Youngest says, "He's not bad. He's just a little stinky. But we still love him."

"Yeah!" Angus shouts. "Even if he is a stinky boy!"

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Lord the air smells good..

Feeling blue so I am reposting an old post with my favorite picture and poem.

Copyright by Frances A. Wiley

Lord, the air smells good...
by Rumi

Lord, the air smells good today,
straight from the mysteries
within the inner courts of God.
A grace like new clothes thrown
across the garden, free medicine for everybody.
The trees in their prayer, the birds in praise,
the first blue violets kneeling.
Whatever came from Being is caught up in being, drunkenly
forgetting the way back.