Tag Archives: Haven Kimmel

My New Favorite Book

VELVA JEAN LEARNS TO DRIVE by Jennifer Niven

Hmm. Second favorite. I’ve blogged before of my love for Haven Kimmel’s A GIRL NAMED ZIPPY.

Velva Jean is very reminiscent of Zippy. A backwoods Zippy, maybe. Or maybe Zip is a suburban Velva Jean. Such a Sophie’s choice to choose favorites, though. Thank goodness I can have them both!

VELVA JEAN LEARNS TO DRIVE is a coming-of-age story about finding your dreams that will make you laugh out loud and then shatter your heart. Again and again and again.

Velva Jean’s dying mother tells her to live her life in the great big world instead of in the moonshining hollers of Appalachia, something ten-year-old Velva Jean doesn’t understand. At 16 she marries Harley Bright, a hell-fire tent preacher, and it seems she’ll escape like mama wanted. But Harley’s world closes in on them, and threatens to suffocate Velva Jean and her dreams. Then she meets a bright yellow truck.

Favorite line(s) …

“And I always chose a new book to take home with me, something Sweet Fern would approve of because she wanted to know the name of any book I brought into the house. I love Little Women and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, which was so beautiful and sad that I wanted to throw it at the wall.”

I loved everything about this book, right down to the character names … Sweet Fern, Ruby Poole, Aunt Bird, Uncle Turk, Aunt Zona, Beachard, Johnny Clay Hart, Swill Tenor, Harley Bright, Root Caldwell, Clover, Celia Faye, Lucinda Sink. And of course, Velva Jean.

How could you not want to hang out with them for 400 pages??

Living Will

I totally rejiggered this from an email I got (thanks, Mary!), but it’s perfect for BeckyLand — funny, and absolutely true … like this … and this … and this … and this.

That was a fun trip down Bloggory Lane!

Anyway … next time I go to the hospital I’m taking this Living Will with me. In triplicate.

I, State Your Name, being of sound mind and body, do not wish to be kept alive indefinitely by artificial means.

Under no circumstances should my fate be put in the hands of pinhead politicians who couldn’t pass ninth grade biology if their lives depended on it, or greedy lawyers and doctors interested in running up the bills.

If a reasonable amount of time passes, say, ten minutes or so, and I fail to ask for at least one of the following …

Guinness
Chocolate
Chinese food
Sex
Mimosa
Cold Beer
Chocolate
Fried chicken
Chinese food
Sex
My favorite book, A Girl Named Zippy by Haven Kimmel
Chocolate cake
Bacon cheeseburger with fries
Guinness
Pizza
Sex
Any of my iTunes music, but especially Bugler’s Holiday
Ice cream
Guinness
Guinness
Guinness
Sex
Guinness

… it should be presumed I’ll never get better. At least I won’t be any fun anymore and that’s just as bad. When such a determination is reached, I hereby instruct my appointed person and attending physicians to pull the plug, reel in the tubes, let the fat lady sing, and call it a day!

You’re all witnesses to my final wishes. And, if you can read between the lines, some of my current ones.

What would be on your list?

Only Three Books

Here’s something interesting. It’s not necessarily a “bad retail behavior” story, but it’s thought-provoking.

Apparently, a well-dressed gentleman stopped in a bookstore and informed the employees that he’d just been sentenced to six months at the workhouse and would be allowed to take three books with him.

He selected Dianetics by L. Ron Hubbard (possibly because of the heft of the volume), Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, and an unmemorable third.

This episode turned into a parlor game for all the booksellers, as in, “If I were sentenced to six months in the workhouse and could only take three books with me, what would I take?”

Because I’m always expecting the authorities on my doorstep, I want to be ready so I’ve been thinking about my three choices.

zippy

One …  I’d bring A GIRL NAMED ZIPPY – GROWING UP SMALL IN MOORELAND, INDIANA by Haven Kimmel.

It’s one of the very few books I’ve lifted to “You Betcha, I’ll Read It Again” status. I love it with every fiber of my being. It does three things to me simultaneously … laugh hysterically, break my heart thus turning me into a little puddle of sobbing Becky, and curse the day the writing bug bit me because I’ll never be Haven Kimmel.

Two …  I’d bring THE TAO OF POOH and THE TE OF PIGLET, by Benjamin Hoff

tao-of-poohte-of-piglet

because really, is there any other way to learn the Chinese philosophy of Taoism? No. No, there is not. Technically, you can find both books in one volume. Alas, I don’t own it. But if I’m only allowed one, I’d choose Piglet because I believe in the virtue of the small.

piglet-jpg

urban-dictionaryThree …  my URBAN DICTIONARY compiled by Aaron Peckham.  I would spend my incarceration memorizing every delicious word and then come out saying things like …

D’s been giving me heat ‘cause I slang bricks.

That concert was hellza cool!

Oooh! I love this song. Let me get my dance on while I lean back.

Yo, check it! Sista got Tyrese on mad lockdown again this weekend. Brotha won’t be able to hang.

And of course I’ll start calling everyone “holmes.”

Holla back at me with the three books you’d take to the joint with you.