If you recognize her name, you’re probably over thirty. Erma Bombeck was an American humorist, who wrote a column about ordinary life. She was a one-of-a-kind genius. She said things like:
– If you look like your passport picture, it’s time to go home.
– Insanity is hereditary. You catch it from your kids.
– I didn’t fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian.
She wrote fifteen best-selling books and over four-thousand newspaper columns.
My writing has been compared to hers often enough that it finally made me stop and examine the comparison. It’s not just one person who’s made this comparison, its lots of different people. Even virtual strangers! I’m flattered beyond words. Only, I don’t see it. Occasionally, something happens in my life and I get a bit passionate and write about it. But, I’m no Erma.
There was the time a next door neighbor painted his garage, and through a series of unbelievable mishaps, his truck ended up parked in my sons’ bedrooms. And there was the time my dogs pinned a water moccasin and I kicked it away while wearing flip-flops. Recently, I was leaving the doctor’s office and a lady hit my parked car while I was sitting inside, then she said she didn’t do it and if I thought I could prove it, I should call the cops. So I did. Call the cops and prove it.
Once, I allowed my computer’s virus protection to expire for six hours and over the next few months, before I discovered there was a problem, I was hacked over twelve-hundred and seventy times! Fortunately, I have long, complicated, apparently unbreakable passwords. So that’s a plus. But still, it took three techs over eight hours to clean up the damage done to my brand new lap top. (I included this paragraph as a warning – if you don’t have long, complicated passwords – you should rethink that! Mine are 12 to 15 characters long and I only use each one once. And yes, I have a book where they are all written down.)
My point is that Erma Bombeck wrote about ordinary life and made it funny. Weird things happen to me, and I write about them. Fortunately, weird things don’t happen often enough that I could write a regular column about my life. So, what do YOU think? Is it a valid comparison? I hope I’m at least keeping you entertained enough that you keep tuning in. I’ll be back in four weeks … hope you will be, too!
Terri Richison (writing as Terri Rich) lives in Clear Lake City, TX with her husband and a giant Great Dane (giant even by Great Dane standards). She is working on self-publishing women’s fiction and avoiding getting a pie in the face if she doesn’t produce pages for every critique session! PIES OR PAGES! Terri started telling stories almost as soon as she could talk – she learned everything she needed to know about storytelling at her grandmother’s knee. Craft however, is something she is still learning – those damn commas give me nightmares!