The Prince Consort is married to a pack rat. Since he is not a pack rat, it’s hard for him. He spends a lot of time cleaning out his closet, hoping I’ll be inspired and do the same, to my closet. Which actually worked two weeks ago. Sort of.
Going through an under-the-bed box, I found a bunch of old FSU (Florida State University) t-shirts and polo shirts and put them on my closet shelves. Not exactly what TPC had in mind, which he subtly indicated by pointing out the empty boxes he had started filling with his own give-aways. He reassured me there were plenty of boxes for me to fill too. After all at my age maybe mini skirts had passed their expiration date. Uh huh.
It turned out I was right to keep the FSU shirts, because the next week we drove down to our Alma Mater to watch the College World Series regional. And there is no way you can show up in the baseball stands without FSU paraphernalia. Our seats were within view of ‘The Animals’ section. We do affront The FSU Animals.
The Animals are a group of devoted FSU baseball fan- alums. They have taken charge of creative cheerleading during the games. Which keeps the crowd loud, enthusiastic, and relatively polite.
Some years ago a tradition began of The Animals singing “Oh Canada”, standing with all respect, when the first FSU batter of the fifth inning was up. Since I have distant relatives in Canada, I am pleased with this gesture. Although I understand one year when the US and thereby The Animals felt insulted by Canada, the Animals substituted “God Save the Queen” as their version of a slap. Never turn your back on The Animals, and always wear your FSU heart on your sleeve, or shorts, or hat.
Having my FSU shirts is not my only proof that being a packrat is a Good thing. Years ago I began a Middle Grade novel about a dragon and a bumblespell wizard. The ms. came close to publication at least once, but .... During the recent CBAY Middle Grade Writing Contest (winners to be announced 17 June) I learned so much from the editorial letter, line edit, and more discussion with my editor. A LOT!
So I decided to apply that education to the dragon and wizard to see if I can’t at last revise the ms. my parents liked best into publishable shape. However, the earliest version, the funniest I think, was written in a word processor I no longer have, on a PC and backed up on floppy disks my Mac can’t read. ARGH!
Good thing being a packrat by trade, I saved a file drawer full of printed paper copies of the early versions. Now all I have to do is burrow through the two-feet tall stack of old paper copies, find the gems, and use my new lessons to make The River Dr’gon and the Bumblespell Wizard into a book an editor will buy.