Sunday, July 14, 2013

An Open Letter to Top Gear UK

Dear Top Gear UK:

If you could stop being so awesome, so hilarious, and so interesting, that would be great.

In all seriousness, I have been a fan of Top Gear UK for something like three years. A bit of a late start, but still, a huge fan nonetheless. In fact I once wrote a short story where you guys--Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May--all showed up to the dealership to help me pick out a car to replace my Pontiac Sunfire. I know you'd never stoop to such a pedestrian task, excluding May, but it was such a fun idea I couldn't resist it. I contemplated going back to school in England for a master's in journalism just so that I could write for Top Gear Magazine. The worst bit is that I'm afraid of fast cars. I'm the epitome of the female Captain Slow. I drive a Mazda3 and giggle when my 1.9 liter engine gets better gas mileage than my ex-husband's Mazda2 with a smaller engine and lighter chassis. In case you haven't figured it out yet, I love Top Gear UK. If that makes me weird, then I'm par for the course.

But really, the awesomeness has to stop. I'm constantly distracted, especially these last couple of days when such happy events as planning my best friends' wedding has lead to a sharp decline in Fraser, Star Trek: Voyager and Bones watching at the house, also leaving me alone with the television for anime, and of course, rediscovering some of the best episodes of Top Gear. The fact that now I'm going to need something to fill the silent void while my boyfriend goes to Iowa is also disturbing. Do I plan on getting any work done? Yes. Will I be able to if all I'm doing is using his computer to watch Top Gear on Netflix? No. For example, I have been here all day and have managed to squeak out a meager 1,300 words on my story between episodes of Top Gear. I also spent half an hour not writing my novel to price a 2003 or 2009 (and in the end I went with the '09) Porsche Boxster S. Turns out that if my Mazda were paid off, I could rather easily afford one. Sure I'd look like I hadn't exactly gotten to where I wanted to be in life, but there's plenty of time for a sexy chick to look hot in a Boxster at the age of 28 and get a 911 later in life, when I have less of a future to look forward to surviving to. In the end I decided to sit down and write my novel, so I could have something to look forward to when I sell it, and believe me, I don't create for money. Like driving a Boxster, I feel like if I wrote for money, I'd be doing it for all the wrong reasons. The right reason to drive a Boxster would be to say, "I drive a Porsche and I'm still alive." The right reason to write a novel is to create something amazing, which is what I'm off to do now.

So to my dear boys at Top Gear, I thoroughly blame you for all the amazing things I plan to accomplish in my half-baked attempt to be able to afford a Porsche Boxster S, but adding to that I'd like to thank you for presenting me with so many wonderful car films to entertain myself with, and for doing what you do, living the dream that so many people wish they could live: driving fast cars in a safe environment for delight of others, being honest in your reviews and hopefully leading to better products and technology. We might not be going Green here, but I'd rather you guys run out all our gas in a few years so we can get on with protecting the environment and watching you guys test rocket ships after all the cars go electric. Thanks, guys.

Yours Squealing,
The Nerd

Monday, July 1, 2013

Bustin' Out the Camp Gear: All You Need is Your Laptop and Possibly Tea

Squealing Nerds, Unite!

We are back! The Squealing Nerd returns to blogspot in light of recent personal developments. My life as an independent blogger took a turn for the weird as my now ex-husband and I moved my blog to an independent server, which we both promptly lost access to--yet are still paying for. In hopes of feeding the nerd cake holes, I have retired my independently hosted blog and have returned to the old ways. Feel free to dance a jig. Go ahead. We'll wait.

Camp NaNoWriMo

So why am I sweating my bum off in 100 degree weather in a tent? Good question. Thank the black gods it's rhetorical. Camp NaNoWriMo is upon us. That means the wonderful people over at The Office of Letters and Light have decided to extend their wonderful hospitality to us for the month of July. Our goal: whatever we can churn out. The plan: to write as well as we're able for as long as we're able. I prepared an outline to expedite things for my novel, for which I am now taking title suggestions. The idea is to have a leisurely, indulgent month to enjoy our craft. Unlike the frantic race to the finish line in November, July is going to be a time for us to catch up on old projects, start new ones, or experiment with a literary medium we are not familiar with. I had high hopes of writing a film with my punk-rock boyfriend, but decided to finish my novel while my handsome boy toy goes to work his magic on a couple songs with his old band in Iowa. I expect nothing less than awesomeness (and vice versa), and when he returns, my novel will be completed, his songs will be recorded, and we will start our film. My friends, expect nothing less than awesomeness.


Camp NaNoWriMo requires nothing more than a well-air-condition place to work, a functioning word processor, whatever you can grab for snack food and a cool river to tube when we're finished. I favor tea and occasionally ice cream. Certain favorite members of my acquaintance favor an assortment of Popsicles that have been melted in the microwave. Whatever your CapNaNoWriMo fare, whatever your plans for the month, we all owe it to ourselves--especially those of us going through tough times (who isn't really?)--to have fun and enjoy this time. I'm off to crank out the first hundred words or so of the rest of my novel. Or sleep before writing all night. I haven't figured that out yet, and ya know what, there is no pressure. Just some hot cocoa and my story. In the grand scheme of things, that's all I really need.