Showing posts from November, 2010

Win a $40 Gift Certificate to CSN Stores

Happy Thanksgiving, readers! I'm thankful for you. And for stuffing. Mmmm, stuffing. Just in time for the holidays, CSN Stores has done it again-- they're offering one of my super readers a gift certificate that you can use in any of their stores. And those stores are mighty diverse. You can get just about anything there, from a stool to a bed. To win, all you have to do is leave a comment here telling me something that's made you happy this week. For extra entries, you can do any of these things (leave me a separate comment for each thing you do): 1. Follow me on Twitter at 2. Follow my blog on Google Friend Connect. (Look over there in the right sidebar for the follow button ---> ) 3. Tweet about this contest. Use whatever wording you want, but here's one example: Win a $40 GC to CSN Stores from @GhostwriterJG at . 4. Review any of my books on Amazon, Goodreads ,, or your own blog for 5 extra e

The Spirit of Les Miserables

My mom called last week to tell me that there would be a one-night-only showing at my local movie theatre of the 25th anniversary concert of Les Miserables at the O2 Theatre, and she asked if I wanted to go. Of course I did; I lost count of how many times I saw Les Mis on Broadway, but it was approximately 8, sheerly because I could not afford to go every weekend. All but the last were spectacular. (The last one was an off-Broadway revival, and it was pathetic.) The first time I saw it was around 1987, which made me either 11 or 12. Colm Wilkinson was starring. The dynamics of the show are a big part of its magic-- from the booming, rousing group songs to the pin-drop moments between phrases of "Bring Him Home." I am convinced that anyone who isn't moved by that song is clinically deceased. Tonight's showing was sold out, and my parents, brother, and I had to sit separately from one another (though close enough for me to lean forward and tap two of them, at least). N

Dropping Out of the "Mompetition"

For the past 20 minutes or so, I've been inwardly huffing and puffing about a post I read where a non-parent denounced child harnesses (usually cute backpacks with "leashes"), calling them cruel. She insisted that parents who use them are lazy and that the kids will grow up to be rebellious, drunken teens who can't wait to get away from their parents. First, I don't use a harness on Sarina. But I do know something about the absolute terror of having your little child outrun you at an amusement park, resurfacing at the top of a ride she didn't belong on. I would never judge someone for using a harness. Others who do just can't get past the "leash" imagery, but you know what? It's less restrictive than holding a child's hand firmly or placing a child in a stroller or baby carrier. Where are all the insulting outcries about how children are being oppressed because they're in strollers? A harness gives the child some range of movement, s

Amazon Boycott: The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure

I love Amazon... or at least, I did, until today. Today, Amazon took a stand! For pedophilia! Uh... huh? No, seriously. Amazon is selling this in their Kindle store: The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure . ( UPDATE : as of Nov. 11, the page is down. I've captured screenshots of what the listing looked like, and you can view them as a .pdf file here .) This is the author's description: "This is my attempt to make pedophile situations safer for those juveniles that find themselves involved in them, by establishing certian rules for these adults to follow. I hope to achieve this by appealing to the better nature of pedosexuals, with hope that their doing so will result in less hatred and perhaps liter [sic] sentences should they ever be caught." Now, anyone can publish anything on Amazon's self-publishing platform, mind you. I don't blame Amazon for not catching it immediately. What I DO blame them for is their deplorable response to the situation once t

I invented a thing (with egg salad)

It started when my new coauthor, Paula Bloom, posted a video where this guy shows us how to peel hard-boiled eggs just by blowing on them: By the way, he's lying about the baking soda being "key." Totally don't need it. It's just easier to peel (or, er, blow) eggs that are not very fresh, so choose eggs that have been sitting around in your fridge for a few days. Anyway, I had to find an excuse to try this, so I decided to make egg salad. Egg salad and I have a bit of a checkered past. See, I loved it when I was a wee one. My dad proudly told me a story over and over and over (still does) about how he got the "secret recipe" from a deli owner one day. He used to frequent a Brooklyn deli and loved their egg salad, and kept bugging the owner about the recipe. He knew there was a secret ingredient, but the owner refused to tell him what it was, because then he knew my dad could make it at home and stop coming to the deli. Well, finally, my dad was about to