Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Soundtrack to Times Two, Oh Yes There Is.

Sarah and I have written a book. Sorry if that's redundant, but I don't want to leave behind any potential first time visitors to 'Hangin' With Hendo', as I'm sure my blog is inundated with first time readers on a daily basis.

If we're to believe google analytics, which @lizbrooks does, then often enough we do have first time readers. I just personally can't imagine where you're coming from, so it shocks me and makes me think google analytics is full of crap. @lizbrooks, fortunately, begs to differ.

As I was saying, Sarah and I have written a book. A memoir, even. It's called Times Two.

It's out April 5th in bookstores everywhere. Unlike me. I'm just out. Everywhere.

Anyway, this blog was not meant to be a tangent about the outness of me or my book. I'm reeling my artist back in.

The point of this blog is to tell you about the book's soundtrack.

Now many of you are saying, "Kristen's book has a soundtrack?"

And I'm here to tell you, "Damn straight, Kristen's book has a soundtrack!"

Here's how. And here's why.

When it came time to name chapters, I was force feeding the babies daily doses of The Beatles. Music, that is. In fact, I wanted to name every chapter after a Beatles song...rename the whole book after one, even. It felt like my inner genius was percolating, overflowing, and I couldn't wait to share my brilliant idea with our publisher.

Before getting to our publisher, a very good writer friend suggested I take a deep breath and "maybe not do that." She suggested, instead, that we give the book "the best title you possibly can without limiting it to a Beatles song title" (sound advice) and that we name the chapters after "any songs that we happen to love. Not just Beatles songs."

So, I handed Sarah my iPod, loaded with about 20,000 of my favorite songs. She began taking it to and from work on her commute, scrolling the songs for appropriate song titles that would work as chapter titles. OK, in a few cases I did step in and direct. But overall, Sarah ended up picking 14 of my all time favorite songs as titles for our book chapters. And I'm telling you, that's a jaw dropping coincidence because Sarah truly has absolutely no way of knowing that The Pretenders, "Talk of the Town" was my end all be all song in 1983. I mean, seriously, we tell each other everything...but if you're going that deep with your person you're in major co-dependent hell. #therearebooksyoucanreadaboutit.

And no book would be worth it's salt without a theme song. So, Antigone Rising's "Borrowed Time" serves as that. Soundtracks are cliche enough without naming the book's theme song after the book. Wouldn't you agree?

The end result, all 15 songs (14 chapters and the theme song) are available for download at the top of this blog. It's the Times Two Soundtrack.

And I think it kicks ass.

#Hendo

Times Two, in bookstores April 5, 2011



Sunday, February 6, 2011

Social Worker Sunday.

A Norman Rockwell moment (photo by Denny)

"I mean, how straight should we make it?"

"Did you just hear yourself?"

"I meant...how much do we have to straighten up for this person."

"I'm not straightening up. I'm not doing anything. She can come here and write her stinking report." Biting lip, stairing around the room, thinking, thinking, thinking, "Do you think we should take the crib tents down?"

"They sell crib tents at Buy Buy Effin' Baby! She's going to judge us because we don't want our babies kamakazi diving out of their cribs?"

"Can I make a suggestion...." mom chimes in from couch. "Will you at least move the alcohol off your counter. I think that would be a good idea."

In our defense, it's not like the babies can reach the alcohol (in case the social worker happens to read my blog). But yes, we do have an ocean's worth of unopened Jack Daniels in a bottle that's still got the seal on it (again, in case the social worker happens to read my blog). It ended up in our house after the Perrotta/Ellis-Hendo Block Party last summer. It was a freakin' Noman Rockwell moment in our neighborhood, and all we have to show the social worker from it is an ocean's worth of Jack Daniel's that never got opened.

She won't see the bouncy castle we rented. Or the terrifying (that's me projecting) clown that was face painting. 

"We'll move it to the basement." We both agreed.

So this is the day we've been waiting for. A rite of passage for all new parents. The one when a social worker comes to our house and deems us fit to raise our own kids.

I remember my brother Tommy telling me what it was like when he and his wife were deemed fit by....hey, wait a minute...they didn't have a social worker come to their house to judge them? Oh, right. Of course not! They have their civil rights. Silly, silly, silly me.

Now, before you post to my blog that you're sick of me and my sour grapes (that's aimed directly at all my Tea Party readers. C'mon, I know you're out there), I would like to remind you all of the following:

If a married couple uses a donor bank to create a family, just like Sarah and I did, they do not have to adopt that child. To be clear - the husband, or father, does not have to adopt his own child. Because that's what that child is. His. No social worker comes to visit their house on Super Bowl Sunday.

Let's go one step further because, at the very least, I've got my right to free speech...

If a heterosexual/unmarried couple uses a donor bank to create a family, just like Sarah and I did, the woman can list her male boyfriend as the father on the baby's birth certificate. And guess what? No social worker will come to their house, assuming they even live together. Not even on Super Bowl Sunday.

Now go enjoy your buffalo wings.

#Hendo

ps-Neighbor Sara who has been through this degrading experience herself and partner Sarah who lived it with me wanted me to add this fact to the blog. We actually had to PAY the social worker for the visit...write a check for the humiliation. So...that too.