A is for Acerbic -The Alphabet Series

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   The Alphabet Series is an approach bloggers use to infuse new life or creativity into their writing.

   “Acerbic” is the first post in my series “New Thoughts For Words”.

   “Acerbic” draws on personal experience and is published in FWA, Let’s Talk by Peppertree Press.

   The challenge for that Anthology was to use a dialogue format to present your short story.

   To tell you the conversation below is between two women in a doctor’s waiting room is cheating.

                                                                                                                                                                                         …just saying

Acerbic

“Unacceptable!  My time is of value, too.  Why aren’t you complaining?”

“I was told the doctor was running late when I signed in.”

“This is ridiculous.  I’ve been waiting more than twenty minutes.  My appointment was for nine fifteen.  What time was your appointment?”

“Well, I’m not sure; I think nine thirty, why?”

“It’s better if everyone is out of sorts.  I can complain for you, make something up, like your dog is in the car, sick and needs to be taken to the Vet.”

“Reading here is as enjoyable as anywhere.”

“Boy, you people are annoying, must you be so perky and pleasant?”

“You’re upset.  Why don’t you thumb through a magazine?  There’s a travel article about Hawaii in this one.  Have you been there?”

“You think looking at pretty pictures of places I can’t afford to travel to will help me… what?  Be happy I have to wait for a man, I pay to tell me I’m sick.  And looking at colorful advertisements won’t help either.  I’m Acerbic.  My parents and grandparents, on both sides, were Acerbic and proud of it.”

“Acerbic?  Is that … American or … a religion?”

“Acerbic is a way of life.  You got a problem with that?  Our dispositions are generally crabby.  We find fault in others quickly and enjoy being sarcastic.”

“Golly gee, everyone feels crabby from time to time.”

Golly gee?  Golly gee, we’ve been sitting here over a half hour.  Can’t you pretend you’re a little annoyed?  That wing back chair looks awful uncomfortable.  These doctors are all the same; think they’re better than the rest.”

“His nurse said the doctor had an emergency, it sounded serious.  Are you really Acerbic?”

“Our whole neighborhood is Acerbic.  We don’t like friendly.  People yell, ‘Don’t park in front of my house, jerk’ and threaten, ‘If your dog pees on my grass, I will call the police!’  Although things are changing.  Someone, I can’t find out who, moved my garbage pail out of the street on a windy day.”

“You don’t mind if I read my book?’

“Of course I mind.  I get it.  Why not say shut-up?  Add please if you have to.  It’s easy; watch my lips, ‘Will you please shut-up!’ ”

“No, tell me about your life.”

“Actually I had a great childhood.  We owned a small cabin not far from Route. 95 below the Georgia border.  Dad named it Acerbia.  It was a retreat where we could be sour and discontent on weekends and during vacations.  You know, say nasty things about neighbors and relatives.”

“Was that fun?”

“Are you kidding, of course, the best.  By the way, they call me Unfortunately.  I’m Unfortunately Fortunato.  What’s your name?  Not that I care.”

“Unfortunately is a first name?  And Fortunato your family…?”

“Mom wanted an Acerbic name, nothing cheerful or common like Hope, Joy or Grace.”

“That had to be a difficult name for a child.  Did she think it was a mistake?”

“No, Difficult and Mistake are my brothers.  Mother named them good, too, because Difficult is in prison and Mistake, chronically unemployed.”

“Was that a surprise?”

“They still haven’t called anyone.  All they do is talk on the phone.  Someone else has to complain.  You can do it.  I like your pink eyebrows.”

“My eyebrows are pink?”

“Yea, they match your lipstick, compliment that bluish tint in your hair, and look cool on a woman your age.”

“My hair isn’t blue! I’m not that old.”

“Isn’t that book you’re reading in large print?”

“It’s easier I don’t have to remember my glasses.”

“Most seniors get a little forgetful.  It’s normal, not a problem unless you can’t remember what glasses are.  You know glasses magnify things, right?”

“I know what glasses are for and I didn’t forget them.  I do not need them to read a large print book.”

“Did you hear that?  The receptionist called Ms. Fortunato.  That’s me, Unfortunately.  Doc’s ready for me.  Have a rotten, day”

“You too, and my eyebrows aren’t pink!”

P.S. I welcome your comments.

Peace On Earth

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Peace on Earth

Aging & Attitude

We ride the noon shuttle from Lake Buena Vista Embassy Suites to Epcot planning to stay for the fireworks.  By 7PM, everyone is spent, having ridden Test Track, Mission Space, and Space Ship Earth. Then snapped pictures with Disney Characters; Minnie, Mickey, Donald Duck, Goofy, and Pluto at Epcot Character Spot, viewed the indoor Aquarium, Turtle Talk with Crush, visited several countries and went to Italy for dinner.

It did not help that the shuttle broke down on Route 4 delaying us some.

The weather is wonderful, slightly overcast skies, but not gray and the lines at the park manageable.  The spectacular Christmas decorations dazzle us.  The landscape appears luscious in multi-shades of green with red Poinsettia accentuating the differences.

“Look at all the people.  This is really a phenomenon.” My husband marvels, surrounded by an international crowd of young and old who traveled to Disney.

It is not just for the rides.

Inside the Magic Kingdom great things are possible.  The world is beautiful, goodness, joy, and merriment abound. But Mr. Wonderful’s feet hurt. He and most of the group are ready to leave.

My feet hurt too, however my grandson and I decided to stay.  We will ride Soarin’ and watch the fireworks scheduled at 9:30pm.

Soarin’ is a multi-sensory attraction that simulates a hang-gliding flight over California’s Golden Gate Bridge, Redwood Creek, Monterey, Lake Tahoe, Yosemite, San Diego, Malibu, Los Angeles, Anaza-Borrego Desert State Park, and Camarillo, and feels like the real deal.

The wait at Soarin’ is sixty-five minutes.  My grandson, days away from being a teen, waits patiently in line participating in the wall games while I chat with a couple behind us from Chicago.

We discuss the scheduled 9:30pm fireworks and my confusion, “Doesn’t the park close at 9:30pm?  They assure me we will see the fireworks; which they saw at 8pm the night before.

Our sixty-five minute wait was almost up it was 7:55pm.

We are ready, to quote Disney:  “Feel the wind in your hair. The air fills with the scent of orange groves, evergreens and the sea breeze. Your feet dangle free. Dip down so close to the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean, you think your toes will get wet. Then return to the sky and continue on Soarin’ to a fantastic finale where fireworks burst into sensational colors around you.”

The five-minute ride surpasses the sixty-five minute wait, and the probability of only moving in place. You think your toes are wet for a moment.

We exit excitedly, anticipating rockets and roman candles sparkling across the sky.  Rushing towards the lake Dominic prompts me, “Nana, ask someone.” People are skirting the area sitting on stone walls.

An attendant explains, “Illuminations: Reflections of Earth glitters, gleams, and glows over World Showcase Lagoon in perfectly synchronized splendor”, is a Holiday Special, different from the nightly fireworks and tonight’s closing event, and definitely starts at 9:30PM.

We can relax, purchase a snack, and find a viewing spot.

I watch my grandson say goodbye to childhood, confident and mature ordering a pretzel, opting for cinnamon and sugar (plain salt are sold out) and yes he will pay the extra dollar for cheese.  He casually counts his money, smiling, engaged in conversation, so like his dad, gentleman style.

IlluminNations” started, “featuring breathtaking fireworks, brilliant bursts of fire, laser light effects, dramatic fountain barges, a stirring musical score” that manipulate emotions, accompanied to a symphony rendition of “Let there be Peace on Earth” and left us feeling joy, hope, love, and peace.

We turn to our neighbors, tears in our eyes; shake hands, offer peace, and I think, let it begin with me.

                                                                ….Just  Saying 

                                                                                              Merry Christmas

Lady Gaga & Eataly

Lady Gaga & Eataly

The morning air is a crisp forty-three degrees and the day promises to be sunny.  A Canadian guest also staying at Comfort Inn cautions my husband, “I wouldn’t go outside dressed like that.”

Mr. Wonderful is wearing a short sleeve t-shirt, Dockers and moccasins without socks. We are 497 miles from warmer weather and plan to be home in Florida for afternoon coffee and cookies.

We choose Comfort Inn because of Bonus Points; for every three nights stayed, we get a night free, a good deal. It is seven in the morning. We anticipate a hot breakfast, seeing steam rising on hot trays and an attendant busy in the kitchen.

We have been away nine days visiting our daughter, family and friends in the New York City area and saw it all, including Lady Gaga’s Workshop and Eataly.

Lady Gaga?

Well, Tony Bennett is a favorite of mine. Bennett, an artist and big fan of Lady Gaga after singing together, plans to draw the diva, nude. Their duet, “The Lady is a Tramp”is exceptional. Gaga really can sing. If Mr. Bennett loves and respects her, so might I, and we head to Barney’s to check it out.

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The elevator door opens on the fifth floor to an oversized Lady Gaga turned spider and mini shopping areas with motorcycle jackets $625, stiletto Christmas stockings $65, Swaronski tea-cups $65, and  bouncing balls $9. The array of items is huge and unique. It is a shopping experience not an interactive workshop, raising funds for the charity “Born this Way”.  Perhaps because we expect over the top it is underwhelming, merely interesting and amusing. Robin Roberts, “Good Morning America” met Gaga and previewed the products.  The interview can be read at,  http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/lady-gaga-barneys-york-95-chocolate-shoe/story?id=15005951

After checking out Bloomingdale’s windows we head downtown and stumble upon Eataly.

OMG, if you are anywhere near 24th Street and 5th Avenue anytime soon, you must, absolutely must, visit Eataly.  Eataly is the brain child of Oscar Farientti who partnered with Mario Batali, Lidia Bastianich and son, Joe Bastianich to create an Italian eating, dining and shopping extravaganza. Farientti has numerous stores in Italy and Japan but only this one in the United States.

Customers roam the block wide store enticed by smells of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, prosciutto, sfogliatelle(shfooyadell’) and espresso.

The website http://eatalyny.com is thorough, user-friendly and worth the time to become familiar with this open-court environment. The tool bar leads to information about the partners, eating with menus, cooking lesson schedules and descriptions, shopping, shipping and more. You can order books, housewares, cheese, pastries, produce, and beef via tabs, The Market and Shop.

A Walking Tour,  guided tour that includes sampling of focaccia, pizza, mozzarella, gelato and chocolate is $35. Cooking lessons are $100. There are twelve different eating opportunities under Eat, that include; formal dining at Manzo to LaVazza Bar (Birra & Wine) to Gelateria (yes to die for gelato) and Caffe Vergnano(coffee bar).

It is an overwhelmingly scintillating experience similar to Tony Bennett sketching Stefania Joanne Angelina Geimanotta, aka Lady Gaga, nude….just guessing.