November 27th, 2006


Sex scene grump redux.

Have I mentioned lately that I hate writing sex scenes? And that I particularly hate writing sex scenes whose contents are relevant to the plot, so I can't just shut the door behind my characters and move on with the rest of the plot because the rest of the plot is in there with the nekkid people, along with the character arcs and the worldbuilding?

I am a Scandosotan, people! "I'm afraid that's none of my business!" is our rallying cry!

What kind of brain is it, anyway, that will not just leave out major sections of human existence because it makes me skittery to write about them? Isn't this writing thing supposed to be mentally/emotionally easy and comfortable?

Oh, right. That was some other profession completely.

I am going to get these plot points jotted down in the bits of What We Did to Save the Kingdom and then close that file and go back to Zodiac House, wherein all the major characters stay clad at all times.

(Two things I think are underused in worldbuilding, though: sex scenes and musical comedies/light comic operas.)
good mris pic

Ten minutes.

I'm trying to order from Otto's: some chocolates for Mikulas, and some sour cherry preserves, some wine, plum halves, good garlic powder, smoked paprika garlic sausage, and did I mention chocolates for Mikulas? I think Otto himself answered the phone -- anyway some fella in his late middle years with a rather thick Hungarian accent -- and he is to call me back and "mark it down" for me. "You can order a million dollars worth if you like!" said Otto-or-not, "but in ten minutes, okay? There are one hundred high school kids right here, and they will run over the store if I don't take their money." So I gave him my phone number, and in ten minutes I will hear from him.

We all know the Hungarian Ten Minutes, which ranges from two minutes to two hours. But I will try again tomorrow if I can't get through today. There Will Be chocolates for Mikulas. We have birch rods aplenty in the back yard, and anyway I don't think anyone has earned them this year. We are taking as many light-in-darkness festivals as we can get away with this year. Mikulas around the house, Saint Nicholas separately with my Catholic not-really-cousins, Santa Lucia around the house again. Light up the candles, punch the saffron dough into submission, pass out the chocolate, because it is dark out there, but it won't stay dark forever.

Otto update

Best phone call ever.

Otto called me back Ten Minutes (=40 minutes) later and bellowed cheerfully about my order: "We got that. We got that. We don't got that, I never heard of -- oh, the plum halves. We got that. Here. I read you a list of other Christmas candies we have, not on the website yet." We interrupted the cheerful order bellowing for two other phone calls on his end, both of which were fully audible to me. One fellow: "Hello, I was wondering if you had Hungarian beer?" Otto: "No we got none of that too bad for you bye!" And the other conversation was entirely in Hungarian. From the tone of bellow, I couldn't tell whether they were saying, "THREE JARS of the STUFFED YELLOW PEPPERS WITH CABBAGE," or, "HOW COULD YOU do that to my daughter, YOU ROTTEN SONOFABITCH." It was vastly entertaining. My favorite part is when I was spelling my name for him, and he said, "Esh as in shale?" Uh..."Oh! Yes, s as in sale!"

Also: "There are only about a hundred and seventy orders before yours, so I will get it out today, maybe tomorrow!"

I have no idea whether we will get what I ordered, but I'm pretty sure we'll wind up with some wine, some fruit, some sausage, and some chocolates, and it was so much fun to bellow at Otto, I don't mind if it's a little different from what we wanted.

I am also amused at the cultural difference: I have been to at least a dozen Scandinavian markets in the US, and I'm somewhere around half that for the Eastern European ones. And no Scando grocer ever brims with the same confidence that you will have a pressing need for their entire stock. Otto, in signing off, yelled at me, "You will need chestnut puree! You call me back!" Heh. I guess if I need chestnut puree, I know who to yell at.