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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

There are Birds in My Ears – And Gold in Them Thar Hills

Cheryl has come with me to my first Open Mic in three, maybe four years.

I have birds hanging from my ears.

Cheryl leans forward, squints at my head.  “What are those, birds?”

I press one side of my face toward her side of the table.  “Birds hanging inside of hearts,“ I say.  I lean back at the table, pick up my decaf.  “I’m trying to look artistic.”  I wiggle my eyebrows at her.  “Is it working?  Do I look clever?”

She laughs.

“I like your earrings, too,” I say.  This is true.  Made of a slender pieces of dark wood, an overlay of silver hanging over them, they dangle alongside the dark brown sweep of her ponytail.

I do love the dangle.

“Speaking of birds,” she says, “I bought these in Bodega Bay.”

I stare blankly at her.  I am nervous, and Nervous Pearl sometimes lacks insight.

“The Birds!” she says.  “Remember?  It was filmed in Bodega Bay.”


To be fair, the biggest thing I remember from the movie is that Suzanne Pleshette had a career before Bob Newhart. 

My brain experiences an adrenaline rush. 

Holy moley.  It's been ages since I've been on a stage.

This is crazy.  I should leave now, save myself some embarrassment.

“What are you going to read tonight?”

I reach into my purse, pull out the Second Book of Pearl.  “A little somethin’ out of this,” I say.

Cheryl nods appreciatively.  “You have wonderful stories,” she says.  “Hey, do you have a dollar I can borrow?”

I grin, reach for my purse.  “I will gladly pay you for saying I have wonderful stories.”

“No, seriously!” she laughs.  “That sounded funny, but I meant to tip at the front counter, and I’m out of cash.  Unless –“  A funny, self-aware grin creeps across her face as she reaches down the neckline of her shirt.

“You’re kidding me,” I say.

She laughs, triumphantly pulls a dollar bill from her bra.  “Ta-da!”

Suddenly, I feel a whole lot more relaxed.

“Everyone should sit with you prior to being called up to a stage,” I say.  


Simply Suthern said...

My daughter has owls hanging from her ears.

"The Birds" was my first horror movie. I didnt sleep that night. I have never enjoyed a horror movie since.

fmcgmccllc said...

Loved Suzanne Pleshette, she was right up there with Natalie Wood and Ann Margret, they just had a certain presence. And and Angie Dickenson.

Indigo Roth said...

Glad you were relaxed =) There was beer tho too, right? ;)

Simply Suthern said...

I imagine you would need to file an iron clad claim before embarking to mine them hills.

Pearl said...

Simply, owls are good too. But did you know that not all owls are wise? :-)

fmcglccclc, agreed!

Indigo, nein! No beer. Drunken poets are scary things!

Simply, :-)

joeh said...

“I will gladly pay you for saying I have wonderful stories.”

Then you owe me some money lady!

Well I never say "Wonderful" that word is not in a man's vocabulary, but I do say "really good."

vanilla said...

Having a friend who puts you at ease on performance night: priceless.

Leenie said...

Something about dancing earrings that changes the personality and gives the wearer the appearance of reckless courage (panache). Fake it til you make it. I would have paid much more than a dollar to hear the Second Book of Pearl read by the Author.

Anonymous said...

Next time you do open mic...have someone video tape it so we can see too.

jenny_o said...

I'm with Leenie - I'd pay to hear you read In Person from either of your books.

Ooooh, I know what you mean about the adrenaline rush to the brain. I get it before dental appointments. And it's more in my stomach than my brain. But still.

I hope you enjoyed your Open Mic experience and keep going. More people need to know about your writing, Pearl.

Daisy said...

I hope your reading went well. I would have loved to have been there.

Joanne Noragon said...

I don't know how these work Pearl, but I do hope there were a pile of books to be purchased. You know, on a little cloth covered card table, by the stage, at intermission. Like new bands, in the olden days.

Elephant's Child said...

Delores is right. We would LOVE to hear you. And you already know that the audience who tells you that your stories are WONDERFUL visits you here each day. Without charge.

Daisy said...

I too would love to see a video of you at Open Mic! And you do have wonderful, engaging stories.

River said...

I agree with Delores, have someone video tape your next reading so that we can hear and see you. We love your stories. And your earrings.

Gigi said...

I second, third, or fourth...or wherever I am in line to both pay to hear the Author read or see a video!

The Birds...I recalled it being SO terrifying when I was younger. And then I recently dragged MC to a re-showing at one of the local theaters. We both laughed until we cried. Apparently, the special effects have come a LONG way since then.

Linda O'Connell said...

Hey at least you didn't pull the money out of YOUR bra :)

HermanTurnip said...

Everyone should have a friend like that. I sure could have used some kind, funny words to relieve the stress prior to my presentation at this week's conference. Ah well...I powered through it without (I think) betraying how nervous I was. Heh...

Rose L said...

Ahhh, open mikes. I have been to a number of them and am getting a little relaxed. I write poetry so share at open mikes and also go to hear others read.

Buttons said...

So now I am curious will there be a youtube of you?:) I think Suzanne and you look a lot alike:) B

chlost said...

If you do another open mike, make an announcement here BEFORE you do it. I would love to be in the audience to cheer you on. I'd also wear supportive jewelry....but I'm not so sure about having money in my bra. It might fall out!

Anonymous said...

I would love to hear you read one of your stories!