Throwback Thursday: An Open Letter To Nicholas Sparks

Hi everyone! This is an old post I wrote for MamaPop, but I am literally falling apart at the seams and need some time for new content. Please to enjoy.
I am going to get vicious hatemail for this, but I simply cannot stay silent any longer. It’s time for an intervention, and I happen to be RILLY good at those. Nicholas Sparks? It’s time to put down the pen.

Dear Nick:Can I call you Nick? I feel close to you, Nick, and there is something I have to say to you as a fellow scribe, certainly not one of your fame and fortune, but one who also puts pen to paper to entertain the masses. Nick? It’s time to stop writing. Your newest book to be made into a movie, The Last Song, opens this week, and the commercial alone was so cloying, so overly saccharine, that I now have three new cavities. I don’t have dental insurance, Nick.
It’s not that you’re a bad person, Nick. It’s that you’ve made some very poor choices in the genre you have chosen in the literary field. You make girls and women weep hysterically and men crawl under the movie theater seats. You give the women you create mystery diseases and have them die beautifully, which, hey, I’m as big a fan of Wuthering Heights as the next lassie, but what you do is not great literature. It’s simplistic writing that does not embrace the reader, but demeans them. And the movies are even worse…Nick, they’re ALL going to be movies, aren’t they? Wonderful. Gak. What you write is trite, cloyingly sweet GARBAGE and you make millions off of it. I am, frankly, shocked that you have not been attacked by a horde of the heterosexual male partners of your female fans, since they are the ones who must endure the waxing and heavy sobs of their girlfriends and wives as you grip them so tightly in your claws of predictable, cliché, self-satisfying tripe.Listen. I watch bad movies. I love a good romance. But you seem hell (sorry, “heck”) bent on insulting your readers by giving them cookie-cutter tragic romances over and over and over again instead of stepping a tiny bit away from your box and trying something a little deeper,or developing your characters a bit more than this shit (sorry! “stuff”) you could find in any 14-year-old girl’s imagination diary she’s writing about that boy in Geometry class. It all makes me just a little ill

So please, Nick, put down the pen. Step away from the computer. You’ve made your fortune, and this weekend women will drag their partners to the theaters to see Miley Cyrus fall in fated love just like all your other “heroines” who all lack a spine and a brainstem, (but have a heart of gold!) and we’ll all learn a Very Important Lesson about love, and you’ll laugh your ass off all the way to the bank. AGAIN.

I’m not doing this to be an asshole (SORRY! “meanie”) to you as a person and a fellow writer, Nick. I’m doing this because you OBVIOUSLY have writing talent, I mean, you’ve published and made a fortune off this stuff. But you’re not doing feminism any good and, seriously, the poor regular dudes and women who have to endure these for their significant others? They’re going to come at you with pitchforks someday, man.

I’m doing this out of a caring, warm place in my heart, Nick. Take up auto-repair or something and write about that. You’ve exhausted your chosen genre

Quick story, and then I’m done, I swear. When I was in rehab, a dvd of The Notebook was played in our common room over and over and over until there was ANARCHY and someone threatened to drink drain cleaner. Luckily, one of the more physically violent patients smashed the dvd into a bazillion pieces. Man, we were lucky the gate had a padlock on it, because that flick will send someone into the deepest, darkest streets to score any junk that will erase that crap from his or her brain.

Saying this with love and respect as a fellow writer,

Cut the shit.

Miss Banshee

Fall Down. Go Boom. Get Job.

Hey, remember when I was all “wah, I’m never going to get a job, everything sucks, waaaaaaaaah!!!”? Well…

I got a job.

Details to follow, but I will be writing. For money. A real writing job. I am over the freaking moon. Every once and a while I think of it and I go like this.

It's a good scream, really.

  It’s a good scream, really.

Other than the jobby job, the other interesting thing that happened this week was that I was weaseled into going to the ER because I fell down (surprise) and hurt myself (wicked surprise) and hurt my foot. NOW. In any other circumstance, I would have gone to the bathroom, cleaned myself off, stopped all bleeding, and gone on with my day. But OH NO. I fell on hospital grounds. And when you fall on hospital grounds, everyone AT said hospital thinks “$$$$$ SUE LAWSUIT MONEY $$$$$” so I was cajoled into going to the ER for my undoubtedly broken (shattered! Destroyed beyond repair!) foot. I was able to take many pictures, like this one:

Not part of Thursday's plan.

Not part of Thursday’s plan.

Aaaaaaaaaand this one…



So they wrapped me up and said it was a severe sprain and gave me crutches and the whole nine yards. Guess what? It’s Sunday and I have NO pain. I have NO swelling. I am FINE. I got schnookered by the damn hospital. If I receive even ONE bill, I will be sending it directly back to the hospital with a YouTube video of me dancing a jig whilst singing “You’ll Never Get A Penny From Me” which is a song I just made up.

Across from me in the ER was a 17 year old kid who decided to take his motorbike out mere hours before his prom, and wiped out gloriously, giving him road rash ALL over his body. It was pretty gruesome. His mom was shrieking that she was going to destroy the motorbike, and his waifish little girlfriend was positively green with all the gore and kept heaving and wailing “The the the…the PROM is RUINED wah wah wah wah” and had to be escorted out lest she barf all over her mangled boyfriend. It was great. Better than cable.

OH RELAX. The kid was fine. You could tell he was like “I am the manliest man who ever manned” and wanted to know exactly how many stitches he was getting, no doubt so he could brag about it to all his bros. Hilarious.

On Mangled Biker’s side, there was a sweet little boy who had fallen and broken his wrist. He was very brave, but put on a hobble when they were leaving, “I can’t walk, my wrist hurts” he bravely whimpered. I would have given him a lollypop if I was the doctor. Extreme lack of lollypops in the ER.

So that’s the story. My foot is fine. The hospital sucks for putting me through all that nonsense for NOTHING, and I got a job. It all works out in the end.

At Least I’m Not Ratso Rizzo

Ahoy, my beloved little squirrels! I am here, have no fear. The last couple of weeks have been rather dull, just shopping my resume around and hoping for the best. However, something might be in the works, so keep those squirrelly fingers crossed for your old pal Miss B, will you? Thanks!

Anyway, things have been pretty great. Squirrel Boy and I watched “Midnight Cowboy” this morning because that’s how we roll, and it erased all grumpiness about the job hunt because hey, things could be worse. I could be Ratso Rizzo. Maybe that should be my new mantra. “At least I’m not Ratso Rizzo.” Works on so many levels, right? I’m not dying of TB or hustling in 1979 Manhattan and both my feet currently work. And I’m much taller than Ratso. Oh whatever, stay with me on this one.

Clumsy segway!

I have finally staggered into the 21st century and acquired an iPhone. It was an early birthday present, and I love it. So shiny! So electronic! No more looks of horror and pity at my ancient dumbphone! I swear, I was with a few 20-somethings the other day and whipped out my old phone and they all were aghast. “How do you LIVE???” they shrieked. Actually I was fine, but I’ve had the iPhone for about 24 hours and I don’t know how I lived without it. I know this is old news for absolutely everyone, but it’s new to me! Yay!

I’ve also been crocheting up a storm, and if you are interested in purchasing a hand made circular afghan, let me know. Here’s my latest handiwork.



The video shoot for Project UROK was fabulous. I got to meet the founders of the project and talk about self-harm, which I am intimately associated with, and I hope that we can reach kids who are in crisis to let them know that they are never alone, no matter how awful things are right now. It’s the most important project I’ve ever been a part of, and I can’t wait to see the finished product.

So that’s about it. I hope to have something good to tell you tomorrow, so keep your fingers (and toes, and eyes) crossed (don’t really do that, you’ll fall the hell down) for me!

I’m Basically Live-Blogging Paint Drying Right Now

Yaaaaaaaaaaaaargh. The job hunt continues. Thus far I have been approached by a car dealership in Pennsylvania, an insurance company also in Pennsylvania, and a mysterious business that would not even tell me what the job entailed. It’s not going so well, is all I am saying.

I have applied at mall shops, grocery stores, and Walgreens. I will dig ditches. I will write about whatever you want. A 2000 word dissertation about what dish detergent you should use? I would write that. I would write about how to survive on $16 a month in food stamps. I would write about dirt. I just need a damn job.

Yeah, my food stamps were cut to $16. You don’t hear about this on the news, but food stamps are being slashed across the board, and people are for real suffering. I am one of the lucky ones in that I don’t have to worry about putting food in a child’s mouth on food stamps, but $16 doesn’t buy much, even when you’re just feeding yourself.

And let’s be real here. I don’t WANT to be on food stamps. I want to work. I can work and keep my SSDI and dammit, I want to do exactly that. I want to be, eventually, completely independent of government assistance now that I’ve straightened myself out. I am ready, world. I am forever grateful that I have had my SSDI, because I’d be literally on the street without it, but I’m ready to venture out on my own.

Sorry for the rant, but the job situation is the most stressful thing going on in my life right now, and I feel so discouraged that if I was still smoking analog cigarettes, I would roll that tobacco up in my Master’s degree and smoke it. But something will come, I’m sure of it. Until that happens, I will persist in searching for a gig. Or two! I’m not picky!

Did you catch that bit I sneaked in there? I quit smoking cigarettes. Last pack was finished yesterday, and I don’t plan on buying any more. I use a vape now, and it’s gotten me completely off the analogs. It’s saving my lungs, it’s keeping money in my pocket, and frankly, it’s a lot more enjoyable than actual smoking. So big props to SquirrelBoy for giving me one of his vapes. He’s a good egg, that one.

I’ve also been crocheting up a storm. I made a blanket for Small Human’s birthday, and I’m going to make one for Tiny Human’s birthday as well. Until the birthdays arrive, I’ve whipped up some doily-sized pieces for each of them, which are now being carried EVERYWHERE. School, Target, softball practice…Those scraps of yarn get AROUND, man. Here’s the blanket I made for Small Human – I’m calling it the Faerie Catcher, and I hope she loves it.



I’m thinking of starting an Etsy shop for them. What do y’all think? Do you know a Tiny Human that would like a Faerie Catcher? All completely handmade, crocheted to order. It’s an idea, at least, and it keeps my hands moving, which is key.

I’ll leave you with this little tidbit. I’ll be recording a video for the incredibly awesome Project UROK this coming Tuesday, talking about my struggles with mental illness. Project UROK is an organization that helps raise awareness for teens with mental illness through videos made by people who have gone through it in their lives, and I am so incredibly pumped to be part of it. I’ll post the finished product here, of course, but I highly recommend you check out to see what these fabulous people are doing. I couldn’t be more excited to participate.

Have a great day, my beloved little squirrels! I’ll be here hugging the air conditioner.

Blister In The Sun

I have always been pale as a ghost. I barely register in photos, and when I do, I’m either blending in with the white walls, or red from either the sun or embarrassment. When placed in sunlight, I go from white to red in five minutes, and it never fades into a tan. White. Red. Back to white. Goddamn cheap Irish skin.

So when SquirrelBoy suggested an afternoon in the park, I immediately thought “I don’t have SPF 948090, so…no.” But I like SquirrelBoy, and it was a beautiful day, so we went anyway. I was completely overdressed for the park in my short dress and huge platform Chucks, but I persisted! I was going to be a normal person who goes outside and greets nature without scowling and whining! This was A Thing that was going to happen. So we went, and put a blanket in the grass, and sat in the sun listening to Schubert. It was really nice.

Five minutes in:

Him: Baby, are you too hot?

Me: NO! I’m fine! (wipes sweat from upper lip, smiles winningly)

Him: Do you want my shirt?

Me: No! Yes! Okay, maybe that would be a good idea.

Him: I just ask because you’re glowing, and I think you’re already getting red.

Me: Oh, fantastic. Yes, I would like your shirt.

So he draped his shirt over my shoulders and lay down, his skin perfectly bronze in the sun, as I sat huddled under his black t-shirt, trying not to mumble “it burns…it buuuuuuurns!” like Regan does in The Exorcist when exposed to holy water. I fumbled with my blackout sunglasses, since the only part of my body more sensitive to sun than my skin are my eyes, and tried to relax. Then we saw them.


I fucking hate geese.

They were lurking by the pond, slowly making their way closer to us, and SquirrelBoy mumbled “fuckin’ geese are coming” as I started to recoil. A goose bit me when I was a kid, and when I was a nanny one CHARGED the little boy I was watching and I had to tackle him out of the way and shield him with my body as this obviously rabid goose tried to attack us. So I am not a fan of geese. Nasty little buggers.

Him: Maybe they don’t like Schubert.

Me: Maybe they don’t like us.

Him: Maybe your skin will blind them.

Me: It’s my mutant power. Ultraviolet skin.

The geese kept their distance, and we watched a couple getting frisky whilst thinking they were being stealth (they weren’t) and SquirrelBoy took some pictures of us with his phone as I sweated through his shirt and my makeup, and decided to make up a story about the frisky couple.

Me: It’s clearly an affair. Look at us, we’re not getting to third base in the middle of a goose poop strewn park. They’re married. And not to each other.

Him: He’s totally getting to third base. There are children here!

Me: I once saw a couple having sex in Boston Common. They weren’t stealthy either. No one plays horsie rides in the middle of a park.

Him: So…

Me: Hmm?

Him: Wanna get to third base?

Me: Ah, no. I do not want to get to third base in a minefield of goose shit. I’m wacky like that.

Him: Killjoy.

Then he put baby oil on his back to roast some more. Baby oil! I’m here wishing I had a bedsheet to wrap completely around myself like a mummy, and boy is BASTING HIMSELF to get tan. I do not understand this. It does not compute. But we had a good time, and didn’t get bitten by geese, and that’s all that matters.

PS to the Friskies: You were really doing that in front of Goddo and everyone, weren’t you? I hope you took showers in bleach afterwards, cause you’re effing covered in goose poo. 




The Springfield Vortex

We are absolutely not lost.

We are absolutely not lost.

Me: Are we lost?

SquirrelBoy: Nope, I know exactly where we are.

Me: Okay.

SquirrelBoy: Why do you ask?

Me: Oh, nothing.

SquirrelBoy: We’re going to Target. I know where we are.

Me: I just ask, because…

SquirrelBoy: Yes?

Me: Well, I’m no Magellan, but…

SquirrelBoy: But?

Me: But we’ve passed that police truck four times.

SquirrelBoy: Hmm.

Me: That PARKED police truck.

SquirrelBoy: Oh. Okay, maybe we’re a little lost.

Me: Twice in each direction. We’re going in circles, dude.

SquirrelBoy: Okay, NOW we’re going the right way.

Me: Four times. Look kids! Big Ben! Parliament!

SquirrelBoy: Oh hush.

Me: Don’t put on coffee, we’re not staying!

SquirrelBoy: Stop.

Me: We’re in a vortex. The Springfield vortex. We live here now.

SquirrelBoy: Are you done yet?

Me: It’s the Winchester Mystery House of towns. We just keep driving and driving and we can never leave.

SquirrelBoy: Please stop.

Me: If we go fast enough, we’ll spin in circles so fast we’ll travel back in time.

SquirrelBoy: Look. So we got a little lost. I admit it. I’m sorry.

Me: Look kids! Big Ben! Parliament!

Love, Danielle

Dear Danielle:

I’m writing this to us because we had a bit of a freakout today and kinda lost it on our Boysquirrel. Now that we’re calm, thanks to that lovely Buspar stuff we took to ease the tension, I think we should talk this out. I know the idea of returning to the work force is scary. Really scary. We haven’t worked in years, and the responsibility and the stress of performing well is upsetting us even though we don’t actually HAVE a job yet.

Please stop hyperventilating. We’ll find something. We’ve gotten through much worse than this. It’s really going to be okay. Sure money is tight, and our food stamps got cut in half, (THANKS, CHRIS CHRISTIE, YOU FUCKER) but we’re going to get through this. Just think of everything we’ve done lately. We’re sober. We have a place to live due to the kindness of a dear friend. We have a great network of people who care about us. We’re going to be fine. This is just another fork in the road, and it’s dark and creepy, but we’ve been through the dark before, much more ominous darkness than worrying if you’re going to get some job, for chrissakes. We’ve been through life and death situations over here. A job? A job is nothing compared to the other stuff.

So breathe. Just breathe. We’re not going to starve to death in a gutter half-eaten by Alsatians. We’re going to keep getting our resume out there, and we’re going to find something. Remember how strong we can be. Everything’s going to work out. And I’ll be with you always, holding your hand. We’ve been down this hole before, and we know the way out, remember?

So tonight we’re going to watch The Voice and maybe have a cup of tea and just relax. We have therapy tomorrow, and we’ll talk about all of this stuff there. We’re going to be fine. Trust me. We’ve got this.

Love always,


it's all going to be okay

it’s all going to be okay