Monday, July 25, 2005


Yesterday DH and I visited the beach, all warm, smooth sand, a garden of colorful beach umbrellas, and the burning sun frying us to a crisp. I had gotten distressing news that my hand numbness is a result of cervical disc disease. This week I’m seeing a neurologist. I must curtail my computer time as well.

In the meantime, we had to cancel our plans to go jet skiing, but opted to visit the beach instead. All I wanted was to float in the ocean, let the water bathe me in saline buoyancy. With temps soaring over 100 degrees at our house, we basked in the cooler ocean breeze and then ventured into the turquoise waters.

Some days, I love living in Florida.

We’re bobbing up and down in the gentle surf, talking, and yet all the while I’m aware of the recent shark attacks and the sightings of bull sharks in our hometown only a few weeks ago. But being a brave Floridian, I keep swimming and then all the sudden…

I see it.

Blood turns to ice in my veins. I am immobilized with fear. I try to speak, but a whimpering gasp flees my trembling lips. DH looks at me in concern and says, “What is it?”

Finally in a tiny, breathless voice, I whisper, “Snark.”

Dh turns paler than ivory soap. “Oh-My-God.”

“Just ignore it and maybe it will swim away,” I tell him, knowing it is swimming even closer.

But I know the truth… it won’t. It’s there in black and white, the chortling swirl of snark floating like dead seaweed. It’s the ongoing, never-ending comments by some authors about WHY RWA should NEVER have allowed Ellora’s Cave to join its ranks as a recognized publisher of romance or HOW those covers are nothing but PORN and Ellora’s Cave writes nothing but PORN and PORN doesn’t belong in RWA. It’s swimming near me, the yawning black-mouthed cavern of contemptuous remarks… and I just want it to go away. I don’t understand this warped animal. I’m an author who respects all genres, even if I don’t read them or want to write them. I just want the snark to start feeding on itself like the big ugly snark it is, cannibalizing until it belches or goes Yark all over itself.

But it’s still circling in the water.

“Hit it on the nose and maybe it will retreat,” suggests DH.

With the heel of my hand, I smack it. It retreats a bit and makes a yipping, cowardly sound, but then continues its circling.

“There’s only one thing to do. I have to do it,” DH says with a resigned look.

I cry out. “I can’t have you sacrifice yourself.”

“It’s all right,” he says soothingly. “If it will make it go away for you, I’ll do it.”

My eyes water with tears. My big, brave husband, I love him so much. Dh takes a deep breath, and then…

He divests himself of his swim trunks.

The snark circling us shrieks, “OH NO! NAKED MAN, NAKED MAN! I can’t stand to look at a NAKED MAN!”

Suddenly the snark swims away, leaving us in quiet, peaceful waters once more. DH dons his swim trunks. I embrace him. “My hero,” I cry out. “Thank you for rescuing me!”

He gives a modest shrug. “Any time.”


Alice said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you. Where is all this prudishness coming from? I thought in romance we celebrated love and sex. Sometimes the sex is only a breathless kiss, but it's still sex we're talking about. To each her own. If something isn't your cup of tea, keep your money in your wallet but leave the folks who do like it alone.

FerfeLaBat said...

Ha! Humor at last in a wasteland of bitching. Thank you.