Stand and avoid

Well I think my cold has officially turned a corner. I woke up yesterday morning and only felt a little bit like Bugs Bunny had dropped an anvil on my head instead of feeling like the Roadrunner just ran me off a cliff.

I have no idea why I’m speaking in Looney Tunes terminology.

And, honestly, I was just glad I was able to start the morning sitting on my couch with a cup of coffee instead of rushing out the door to chaperone a fourth grade field trip like I did on Tuesday. Not that spending the day with fifty fourth graders isn’t my idea of a good time. It’s just that spending the day with fifty fourth graders isn’t my idea of a good time.

Although I did hear a lot of information spouted as fact that I’m pretty sure was either completely made up and/or fear tactics used by their parents. Things like “Did you know if a dog eats even ONE GRAPE he will die immediately?”

I know this to be untrue because Scout has eaten a grape and lived to bark about it.

(Disclaimer: I have heard that grapes are bad for dogs. Scout ate the grape before I could grab it. I was not intentionally feeding him grapes like he was Cleopatra or anything.)

So I spent the morning trying to catch up on email while drinking a large cup of coffee. But then I had to leave the house to run errands because I had some things to return to Target and World Market and you don’t really care about any of this.

However, the other reason I had to leave the house is that some insurance guy had called a week ago and told me he’d been contracted by our home insurance company to do an external and internal survey of our house to determine if we had the proper coverage level. And so I scheduled a time for him to come by.

But then I mentioned it to P last night and he thought the whole thing sounded fishy. Did I know this guy really worked for an insurance company? Did I know if our company required this? Was I planning to let a complete stranger just walk in and look around our house?

This is why I married P. I would end up on the unfortunate end of an episode of Unsolved Mysteries without him. I am trusting. I do not ask pertinent questions. I assume people are who they claim to be.

I’m still waiting to receive money from Mr. Umara Nihaji from Nigeria who had no heirs and decided to leave his fortune of one hundred and twenty million American dollars to me. I mean I even got an email from his lawyer.

So I called our insurance company this morning to ask a few more questions. And it turns out it was a legitimate thing. However, it was not a required thing. They tried not to give this away on the phone, but I could tell by the terminology that she couldn’t legally tell me it was required but still wanted to imply that we needed to have our house inspected to make sure we have enough coverage.

But we’re comfortable with the amount of coverage we have and so I told them we didn’t want the guy to come by our house. She wasn’t sure she could contact him to cancel the appointment and that’s why I left the house. So that I wouldn’t be home in case he still showed up. I basically employed my time-honored technique of avoiding a potentially awkward situation.

Avoidance is a real strategy. Trust me. I’ve used it for years.

The only problem is sometimes it requires you to leave your home for a few hours while you hide from some insurance guy that you don’t know. And I felt bad that he was coming by the house for no reason but I did everything I could to get the appointment cancelled.

Anyway, I went to the Target that’s seven extra stoplights away from my house because I also had to return something to World Market and that Target is closest to the World Market. None of this matters in your life one bit.

After I made my returns and perused the aisles at Target, I still had some time to spend avoiding the insurance guy and I decided to run over to Barnes and Noble. I could make up a reason why I went there because I’d like to think I’m cooler than this, but I’m so not. I totally went to see if they had my book on the shelves yet.

The official release date is February 8, but several people have emailed or tweeted or let me know by carrier pigeon that they bought it at various bookstores already. And so I was curious to see if it was there. Plus I keep thinking it might seem real if I see it in an actual bookstore.

I looked around for a minute but didn’t see it anywhere. But then I turned to my left and was greeted by a big sign with my picture on it announcing that I’d be signing books there on February 12.


I couldn’t have been more shocked if I’d seen a giraffe.

I mean I know I have a book signing scheduled there, but I didn’t think about there being a sign with my picture on it or anything. And so I turned around and walked right out of Barnes and Noble with great haste.

There is no explanation for my reaction other than I am weird.

And I apply my avoidance strategy to various aspects of my life. Including signs with my picture on them.

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  1. says

    Well, this is ridiculously exciting! I mean your book, not the whole “dog survived grape ingestion” incident.
    Congratulations! I can’t wait to buy a copy and pretend that I know you in real life, because strangely enough, I feel as if I do;) (and I mean that in the least creepy/stalker way possible.)

  2. says

    Is it weird that I cannot help but smile the entire time I read your blog? My cheeks are going to be so tired by the end of your book…

  3. Susan says

    What a surprise to see yourself on a sign in Barnes & Noble. And exciting! I’m betting that made it seem real, yes?

    The imagine of your dog on a sofa with you popping grapes into his mouth made me choke on my coffee a little. In my mind there was a big fan made of palms, too.

  4. sheetal jain says

    Hey good luck with your book. Wish it were releasing in INdia too!!! I am so looking forward to reading it..have asked my sister in the US to pick it up.
    Love the way u write:)

  5. says

    Oh, I’m totally dropping by B&N just to see your picture (im patiently waiting on Amazon to ship your book). Plus, not that I would know, but the cafe has a very decent chocolate cheesecake!
    It’s also nice to know someone else employs avoidance techniques!

    • Marie M.C.` says

      If you just ran out — I beg you to return tomorrow and take a picture of the sign and post it here! Please!!!! I’d get out of bed and jump up and down I’m that excited for you . . . but that would mean getting out of bed. And I’m pooped. Not from a bad cold, not from going on twenty-five unneeded errands to avoid seeing an insurance agent but . . . oh dear . . . I know I did something today. Now I can’t find my glasses. My house is infected with gremlins who take delight in hiding my glasses. And other things.

  6. lindsey says

    This is SO EXCITING! I’ve been reading for over 5 years and thought many a times that you would make a great author! So… is it available on the Nook?

  7. Michele says

    Hahah good stuff! Can’t wait to read it – I’ve been meaning to ask, do you have any preference or any benefit to you one way or the other if I get a hard copy vs kindle? Hard copy lends itself to, well, lending to friends more readily, but maybe I just want to make them get their own copy :)

  8. says

    There is no chance that I would ever encounter a big sign with my picture on it in any store but if I did, I would hightail it out of there too!

  9. says

    So exciting! I pre-ordered your book via Amazon because I live in a teensy-tinsy town with no bookstore. Also, I plan to give it to my daughter, since she’s a brand new mother and all, and I’m basically a crickety, ancient memaw (although my “grandma” name is Honey, thankyouverymuch!) But I want to read it before I give it to her. I hope that’s not cheating. Dang. I probably should’ve bought two books, huh? Um, if you find out you’re one book short of some sort of record or goal or amazing list, let me know and I’ll buy another one!
    Best of everything to you, sweet girl!

  10. says

    I got chills when you described your bookstore experience. That’s so exciting! And I’m glad you’re feeling better. Also, I totally would have done the avoidance thing, too.

  11. Sallie Baker says

    And you didn’t take a picture of it…??? ( you taking a picture of a picture of you?? )
    Please come to Dallas or Ft. Worth so I can have mine signed…??

  12. Colorado says

    Yeah, I employ the advoidance technique as. Congrats on your book, and on your big B&N sign! That is so awesome!

  13. Honey says

    You know that I am crying again! Please go back to that store and take a picture of your picture!! I want to see it! I am so proud!!!

  14. Melanie L. says

    OMG, I’m so excited for you and the book release! I can’t even imagine turning around to find a giant poster of my face….

  15. Lauren Kelly says

    How surreal to see you picture up in Barnes & Noble!!!!! Can’t say enough how proud I am of you and the labor of lov I know that went into that book!! Cannot wait to read :)

  16. Gwen says

    Go stand by that picture & have your picture taken! How cool is that. Can’t wait to read your book. You make me feel so much better with your avoidance story. Now I know I’m not alone.
    I read every day. I feel like I know you. I find myself sharing your funny stories with the lead in, “My friend…” Please tell me that’s not creepy.

  17. says

    That whole break-down of your avoidance cracked me up. I SO wish I lived in Texas and could see you at your book signing. For now, in my small Missouri town, I shall just drive and get a copy myself. I can’t wait to read it!

  18. Michelle H. says

    Can’t wait to buy the book! I can’t believe you didn’t take a picture of your sign to put on the blog! Go back…or send Gulley. 😉 Congrats.

  19. says

    Congrats on the book signing! This cracked me up: “I’m still waiting to receive money from Mr. Umara Nihaji from Nigeria who had no heirs and decided to leave his fortune of one hundred and twenty million American dollars to me. I mean I even got an email from his lawyer.”

  20. Debra D. says

    I have pre-ordered your book and am patiently waiting for its arrival. No, that’s a lie, I’m not patiently waiting, no patience here at all. I keep checking the delivery status. Alas, as I live in Florida, I cannot make your book signing on the 12th. Dang it.

  21. Barb says

    Thanks for the chuckles to start my days. You have a great sense of humor and great way of expressing it even throught life’s mundane activities. (I could just picture the grape vs. dog conversation during the field trip). :) Blessings!!

  22. says

    I took a “peek inside” your book on Amazon yesterday. You know when you’ve been loyal to a tv show for years and then they make a movie of that television show? And it’s really good and gives you lots of inside information and background that enriches the tv show? Reading an excerpt from your book was like watching a trailer to the movie of your blog. So excited for it to come out!

  23. Melanie Miller says

    Oh praise be! I thought I was the only card carrying member of the Avoidance Club. So nice to know I am not alone.

    It must have been so surreal to see your picture at B-n-N. but deep down, so very thrilling. Send Gulley to get a picture!

  24. says

    I think I would have left too lol :) I would have thought that people would have seen me and reconized me from the giant poster…and then thought I was there to look at myself of the giant poster. I would have been freaked out and left too. Ha!

  25. Nicole says

    It has to be so surreal. You deserve the success and happiness! It may just take a little while to get used to it – think of it like a new pair of shoes that feels a little uncomfortable then after you wear them for a while, they turn out to be your favorite! : )

  26. Allison says

    Bless your heart. Congratulations on the book, the signing, and on avoiding the insurance man. I, too, have a 4th grader, and am amazed at the “facts” they seem to trade around with each other (and by “facts” I mean “complete and utter nonsense”.) But they’re 10 and awfully funny and cute. I hope your book signing is a complete joy for you.

  27. says

    “I’m still waiting to receive money from Mr. Umara Nihaji from Nigeria who had no heirs and decided to leave his fortune of one hundred and twenty million American dollars to me.” This totally cracked me up for numerous reasons which I will not go into.

    I totally understand the avoidance of awkward situations. Also avoidance of large social gatherings. I would rather die than deal with either of those.

  28. says

    I share your “time-honored technique of avoiding a potentially awkward situation” because that is exactly what I would have done.

    So excited about your book! I have pre-ordered it for my Kindle after taking the quick peek inside. Sucked me right in but after reading your blog for the past few years, I was not one bit surprised. Can’t wait to read it all. Congratulations! :)

  29. Jenny says

    So after reading about your field trip…I couldn’t resist…I too learned more than ever needed to know about the Pecos Indians last Thursday…but I made my kid write about! And you’ve convinced me that I need to check out the Trader Joe’s in town!!

  30. Tonia says

    I love reading this blog! And I may have got a little misty eyed when I watched the video about this new book, and being a new mom myself (through adoption) to a 7yr. Old & 6 month old girls, I knew this would be a book I would fall in love with! I ordered from Christian, can’t wait to receive it!

  31. Kimberly/OKC says

    Can’t wait to receive my copy!! Looking forward to meeting you at DotMom where I can have you sign it!! Thanks for the blog, I read everyday.

  32. Susan B. says

    I’m so excited for you. I got goose bumps reading about your trip to B&N. I can’t wait to read it. Seeing so many good Tweets about it. Take a deep breath and enjoy this time!

  33. Jenny says

    Is it wierd to say that I am proud of you? So proud. You are an inspiration to us all! I wish you lived closer (I’m in VA) or I would be at that book signing to tell you in person. Congratulations!! :)

  34. says

    Let me just say that I LOVE that you are not”cool” enough to act as if you went to the book store simply to look at books! This is what makes you fun, honest, and relatable.
    I started a blog four months ago, and I am working on the final stages of editing for a book I wrote on my experience with miscarriage, stillbirth, and infertility. If I ever find myself in your position, you better believe I will NEVER be cool enough at Barnes and Noble. I will be stopping by daily and running to the shelves. Congratulations!

  35. Strawberry rose says

    If I saw my picture, I would have thought it was hilarious! I would have taken a picture of myself with the picture. I’m so excited for you! Can’t wait to read your book!

  36. says

    I just pre-ordered your book and am SO excited that it will be available electronically too – YAY!!!! I can NOT wait to read it. I think you are absolutely wonderful!

  37. Deana Lewis says

    I rec’d an email today that my copies of your book (that I pre-ordered in Dec from B&N) shipped today! I can’t wait! If I bring them to dotMom in Frisco, will you sign them????

    Can’t wait! for dotMom OR your book :)

  38. Jammie H says

    After reading your post yesterday, I went to the Barnes and Noble here in Charlotte and asked them if they had it. They did indeed. It is in the Christian Living section of the store, which you may want to mention so people can find it more easily. I bought it and can’t wait to start reading it tonight! Congratulations!

  39. Nate's Mom says

    I would have run out of that store so fast. Unexpectedly seeing a picture of yourself in public is a recipe for acid indigestion. Maybe even GERD. Egads.

    And now I know what I want from my husband for Valentine’s Day, which would be, your book!

    Nate’s Mom