Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Top Five Inventions of My Time - How About Yours?

The other day my daughter was having a Skype date with her boyfriend. The fact that she was in Australia and he was over ten thousand miles away on the other side of the world in The Netherlands, didn’t matter a whit, thanks to the wonders of modern technology ie. the Internet.
This was a far cry from the long distance dating her father and I did just thirty years ago when I donated my blood in Athens in order to be able to afford a phone call home. Oh, and I had to book that phone call 24 hours in advance!
I suppose there are people who can live without the Net—remote tribes of New Guinea, Carmelite nuns, members of the Flat Earth Society—but I’m not one of them.
Is there anything the internet can’t do? It can find you answers to all sorts of questions, keep you in touch with far-flung friends, book hotel rooms, even find you a husband. And to think, the US government wanted to keep this wonderful invention all to itself. Had it not been for its eventual application as the www we’d still be trekking to the library to research, relying on the vagaries of the postal service to keep in contact with friends, paying a fortune for travel deals etc.
That got me thinking about inventions and what I consider to be the top 5 Can’t-live-without-them inventions of the modern age.
My mother used to maintain the bobby pin was a remarkable invention. Probably. If you had enough hair to need one—or happened to like picking locks. But I need to point out that Mom was born in an age where television, walking on the moon, machines to wash dishes and clothes and even dry them, hadn’t been invented.
The Top Five Inventions that made a huge impact on my life are: Television, Immunization, Dishwashers, The Pill and the Internet.
A quick straw poll of those nearest and dearest turned up answers relative to the age of the respondent.
While our grandmothers and great-grandmothers would probably rate the invention of the radio, electricity, the old-age pension, hip and knee replacements as their Top Five, my husband’s mother maintains: Penicillin, hand held battery-driven vacuum cleaners, The Pill, electric typewriters made a huge impact on her life.
His father rates:- Television, the improved efficiency and safety of cars,antibiotics, anaesthesia, laparscopic surgery. (Can you tell he’s a surgeon?) J
My 21 yo son says:- The computer game Modern Warfare 2, stick deodorant, Toyota Landcruisers, fixed gear bikes and Atomic weapons. (what can I say, he’s a boy!) He was surprised to be told that fixed gear bikes were all we had to ride in the “olden days”!
My 24 year old skyping daughter’s are:- cell-phones, computers, iPods, skype, and MAC makeup…
My 27 yo daughter said:- ipods, laptops, wireless internet, cell phones and GHD(hair straightener). LOL!
I wonder what will our children’s children think are the greatest inventions of their era? Intergalactic travel? The cure for cancer? I can’t even begin to fathom the possibilities. Can you?
Which inventions would make your list? In-vitro fertilization? Satellite navigation? Automatic car windows? Richard Gere? Aerobics? Moosetracks icecream, credit cards, atms, something else?
I’d love to hear your Top Five. And maybe some suggestions for what kids born in the future will think are their Top Five.
I’m giving away a copy of my June release, THE SHERIFF AND THE BABY to the most interesting answer.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Missing the Olympics...

I am suffering major Olympics withdrawal right now. I had so much fun watching all the events. I found some new ones to root for with Nordic combined and ski cross. And if I loved Apolo any more, he’d need to take out a restraining order on me. The hockey games were amazing. I’m so proud that the MVP is a Michigan kid. Actually I’m so proud of all the athletes, no matter their country. They all played with so much heart. They work so hard and sacrifice so much to get to this level of competition that I can’t help but root for them all!

If like me, you’re suffering Olympics withdrawal, please remember to pick up my April book, HIS BABY SURPRISE. (I had to post that yummy cover again!) The hero, Brooks Hoover, is a hockey bad boy who’ll hopefully steal your heart like he stole mine and the heroine’s.

So who is your favorite athlete from the games? Or what was your favorite event?


All of us get those email jokes and inspiring stories that circulate. Some I read, others I delete, depending on how much time I have. I received this one the other day. The title caught my attention and then after I read it, it made me think.

Here’s the email:
What is celibacy?
It can be a choice in life, or a condition imposed by circumstances.
While attending a marriage counseling weekend, Walter and his wife Ann, listened to the instructor as he explained, “It is essential that husbands and wives know the things that are important to each other.”
He then addressed the men, “Can you name your wife’s favorite flower?”
Walter leaned over, touched Ann’s arm gently, and whispered, “Gold Medal All-Purpose, right?”
And thus began Walter’s life of celibacy…

Okay, the celibacy part didn’t make me think. After I smiled, I wondered after many years of marriage, did my husband know my favorite flower? Did I know my favorite flower? Through the years my tastes have changed. When I was younger I loved roses, still do. Don’t we all? My favorite was yellow roses. When I got married, my mom and I argued about the flowers. I wanted the bridesmaids to carry a long stem yellow rose. She wanted them to carry a bouquet of mixed spring flowers. They carried the rose (and that battle wasn’t easy to win since she was paying for the flowers).

After I read the email I sat wondering what is my favorite flower today? I like roses, irises, tulips, Gerber daises, lilies, just about anything. You give me flowers and I’ll love them. I’m not picky anymore. I decided not to test the hubby since I couldn’t quite decide on a favorite flower.

A few days later was our anniversary and, Bless his heart, I kid you not he came home with yellow roses.

I was so excited I said, “You remembered.”

He smiled and replied, “Sure I remembered. It’s our anniversary.”

I took a whiff of the flowers. “I meant about the yellow roses.”

He got that deer in the headlights look. “Uh…well…” I could see he didn’t remember so he did some fast thinking and went with the truth. “I went in for red roses but the lady said she was low and could do a mixture. I told her no I’d try somewhere else. She said her supplier sent her too many yellow roses and she’d let me have a dozen on sale. I told her she had a deal.”

Gotta love a man who gets it right—by accident—and on sale.

I guess when it comes down to it, I still love yellow roses. And the husband.

What’s your favorite flower? Or are you like me—just happy to get flowers.

Skylar’s Outlaw – Jan ‘10