May 14, 2006


Ha! I bet you thought I was going to say something like, “Hotclue Does Houston”, right? Who knows, I might yet.

Right now, it’s 2:00 A.M. on Mother’s Day, I can’t sleep and in fact, I’m wired and my Hotclueieness is rolling over me like an eighteen-wheeler hurtling down Chicago’s Dan Ryan Expressway, so now’s a good time to snitch–I mean, tell you about Beth Anderson, the mother, who doubles as Beth Anderson, the author. A triple threat when you add me to the mix.

Sounds derogarory, doesn’t it. Calling her a mother, I mean.

Well, sometimes it is.

Beth’s the kind of mother who (or is that whom? EDITOR, OH EDITOR!) her children don’t really think of as a mother, but more like an addled woman-child playing hopscotch and tra-la-la skipping through life while she forms tremendous, award-winning bubbles with THEIR bubblegum. I have to tell you, that’s a pretty accurate description, and I take full credit for most of her goofiness throughout her years of somehow coping with motherhood.

I’ve been around a long time, although she didn’t know I was here until recently–well after she started writing, in fact, which probably says something profound about the stressfulness of Writing Novels and Getting Them Published. As soon as I figure out which part is profound, I’ll let you know.

Anyhow, as absolute proof of her innate but unmistakeable outrageousness, she received a Mother’s Day card yesterday from her middle child (which should tell you that the child is hopelessly warped anyhow, even if she wasn’t Beth’s daughter). On the front of the card it says, “When we were growing up, a lot of times running away seemed like a good idea.” On the inside it says, “But you never did.”

Both Beth and I are still laughing about that because it’s so perfect. It says it all. She might even keep that one. Well, it’s possible. (This should give them something to look for when she’s gone, just trying to find it.)

When all four of her children get together, they love to torment her about the time she took one of her grandbambinos down a huge rolling sliding board and got stuck halfway and had to do her inchworm act to get the rest of the way down. They all laughed so hard they peed (somehow tinkled sounds so prissy so I won’t use it) their pants. She never told them this, but I’m telling you now: So did she.

There was the time when she was babysitting two of the grandbambinas and got bored, so she (although I instigated this) said to the girls, “Let’s blow up some balloons and put them in the trash compactor and see how loud they blow up.” Naturally, being the adventurous kids they are, and I’m speaking of all three of them now, they loved the idea. The noise was tremendous, and thus her reputation was established with the little girls when they were at a very tender age. They’ve never fully recovered, although the fact that their other grandmother is perfectly normal should help them out somewhat.

Her son once told her, in a moment of deep reflection, “Ah…you were okay as a mom, you just never grew up.” She’s still trying to figure that out, although she has to acknowledge the wisdom of it. Or maybe she’s just trying to figure out how come he GOT so much wisdom, having sprung, unsuspecting, from her loins.

Her daughters love to say she’s not the normal mom everyone else had, the cookies and milk kind of mom, don’tchaknow, which has resulted in her, every Christmas SINCE they grew up, making tons of cookies, which nobody ever eats, probably because the sight of homemade cookies is so unfamiliar.

Or maybe it’s because once when she made some really gorgeous ones, she wouldn’t let anybody eat them because they were too beautiful to eat. The grandbambinas are still traumatized over that and no amount of cookies now will tempt them. Oreos are just fine, thankyouverymuch. Their parents were raised on Oreos, and as often happens in severely dysfunctional families, the Oreo dysfunction has filtered down to the next generation.

At the risk of becoming maudlin (Oh, God, NO, Beth has something sentimental she wants to say! Please, NO! SCREEEEM!) she wants to say thank you to all four of her children, Debbie, Rick, Barb, and Beth Lyn, for letting her be their mom, such as she is.

It’s been fun, guys. Well, most of the time. And don’t worry. I’m never going to change. In fact, now that you know there are two of me, Hotclue and I will continue conspiring to fill your lives with adventure and oddballness, as well as love.

Happy Mother’s Day, everybody!
The Hotclue
(aided and abetted by Beth every once in a while, when they let her out of The Home.)

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  1. Wahahaha! You sound like my kind of mom, like the kind of mom I try to be. Hotclue has you nailed! Happy Mother’s Day, Lonnie

  2. And would you believe, Beth has lived under the shadow of all the other extremely nice and very normal parents and grandparents, all of whom seemed to do everything by the book, and so she always thought SHE was doing it wrong.

    What’re you gonna do, though. Beth invents her own shadows no matter what I say. Thanks for stopping by, Lonnie! Hope you had a great mama’s day!

    Hugs, Hotclue

  3. Well grandma, I do remember those times.. the balloons were great!!! The dinosaur cookies was quite a tramatic experience indeed. What people need to know is that you invited us up for an entire weekend of baking…and we weren’t allowed to eat any of the cookies!! In fact, she gave my mom a bag to take home after the weekend and told her we needed to keep them in our freezer and not eat them!! Thank goodness my mom had some sense, or she couldnt’ take use complaining the entire 3 hours home.. so we ate them in the car!!! Yes, I will never forget how crazy you are and wonderful too!!! Happy Mother’s Day.. it’s our time to celebrate you and all the great memories you have brought us. I love you! 🙂

  4. BWAHAHAHAHA!!! Well, I guess Beth got told off!

    However, I remember all this differently, because I was there. She didn’t keep you from eating the cookies YOU baked and decorated (at least I don’t think she did), it was another time, when SHE baked Christmas dinosaur cookies elaborately decorated for Christmas, especially for your mantlepiece at home. She worked two hours on each frickin’ cookie and THAT’s why she didn’t want you to eat them. She made them for your mantlepiece.

    Wrong of her, I admit and so does she. But she meant well. She just had this weird mindset at the time, because every year up to that time she had given your mom something beautiful to decorate the living room at Christmas. That year, it was the bloody (beautifully decorated) dinosaurs. After that, which was traumatic for everybody, I guess she gave up on that idea. 😉

    Love you too, Punkin’. Both Beth and I forgive you for eating the (beautifully decorated) dinosaurs.

    Hotclue Herself

  5. P.S. I just realized something. When Beth told the kids not to eat their cookies, I think she was secretly thinking, “At least not while you’re here.” She’s not all THAT dumb, folks. She understands about eating too much sugar and almost certainly didn’t want to be scraping the kids off HER walls, a trick most grandmas secretly acknowledge and cherish. There’s nothing quite as satisfying as getting even with your own kids for the things they did when THEY were kids, by giving THEIR kids cookies and candy to take home. Heh Heh Heh.
    Hotclue, the sane one. Heh Heh Heh.

  6. ROFL, I love it! I like the line about running away from home, may I use it? Motherhood is a hoot and I think you’ve found the ideal way to deal with it. Childhood with your children, BUT you don’t grow up. At least it cuts the time before we become senile.







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