NOT the Lorca Damon page for YA readers! Run away, children, run away!

Category Archives: Overly simple thoughts

The internet of things is already taking over my house, as evidenced by the fact that I just called out an apology to my Roomba when I heard it struggling over a piece of laundry I’d left in the floor. You’ll be glad to know the Roomba and my bra both survived the altercation.

But when a great little company with a crowdsourced product offered me (me, of all people!) the chance to test out one of their products and write about it, there was no way I was turning it down. First, I love free stuff, no matter how awesome or stupid. Second, from the lovely description in the email, I knew I had to have this thing because the potential for messing with my husband’s mind is endless. Third, I just like being important enough for companies to send me free shit.

This little gadget is called IvyLink, and it’s a smartoutlet, which right away is probably too smart for me and therefore out of my league. But when I learned that I could control this outlet–and therefore anything I plug into it–from my phone, there was no way I could NOT use it. Yes, you plug this adapter in your regular wall socket and you can turn it on and off from the free app you download to your phone. I’m sure the fantastic people who designed it were envisioning a better world where city apartment dwellers don’t have to leave their air conditioners or heaters on while they’re not home, but can instead get the temperature moving as they head back to the house. I’m sure there are irrigation considerations, so we don’t have to leave sprinkler systems on a timer and water the crops (or the golf course, my personal pet peeve) in the rain just because that’s how the system is set up; no, you can activate it from your app now. Went out to run some errands and took longer than you thought? No more walking into a dark house since you can activate the lamp you keep plugged into this thing before you even reach your drive way.

Or…OR…you could plug the TV into it and randomly turn the thing on and off from another room in the house, leaving your husband bewildered and misdirecting all blame away from you since you weren’t in the room. You could turn the bedside lamp on and off while seemingly texting your friend or checking Facebook. But those baby steps into keeping the man guessing are child’s play, nay, amateur hour.

I plugged the treadmill into this handy little device.

On. Off. THUD. On. Off. THUD. On. Off. THUD.

Before you leave nasty comments, remember that he totally had it coming for bodily injury grievances that I won’t go into here. But if this type of revenge is right up your alley (or if you’re a do-gooder who would use this gadget for the betterment of society), the folks who sent it to me would love you to check it out.

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NOTE OF CAUTION: This is a tale of two nephews. The story doesn’t make sense to begin with, but it makes even less sense if you think I’m talking about the same nephew.

Now, you read that title and you’re thinking to yourself, “Wow, Lorca, you’re a bitch,” or, “What has your sister ever done to you?” and you’re actually right on both of those points, but that’s not the case here. My sister was totally on board with this plan, and I happened to have an extra drum set lying around that he would love, complete with two–count ‘em, TWO–cymbals! The best part is she now gets to foster his musical creativity (an hour away from where I happen to live) and my kid no longer owns a drum set. It’s a win in every direction.

But ah, the karma gods of Christmas got me back. My closest living nephew, a young man who is decidedly not a little boy and therefore has evolved past the loud-Christmas-gift stage, unwrapped a present last night from some other hopefully well-intentioned person in the room, and took off down the hall with delight to go put it to good use.

When he came back, I stopped dead in my tracks, certain that a gift I’d bought my husband had been broken on the trip over to my in-laws’ house. The room filled with a horrible, eye-watering scent that caused tiny flames to erupt inside my nostrils. I was certain the expensive doe urine I’d bought him for an upcoming hunting trip (that’s a story for another blog post) had leaked out of its tiny bottle and was at that very moment filling the room with noxious fumes.

No, someone had given my teenaged nephew… AXE BODY SPRAY.

My darling nephew had doused himself in this concoction under the mistaken impression that it would be a good idea, or possibly because he thought the commercials were true and half-naked women would throw themselves through the front window like a team of Black Ops, so attracted by his smell that they couldn’t keep their hands off him. That’s the only version that makes sense, since no one in the room wanted him to smell like anything other than Ivory soap and appropriate amounts of deodorant. Well, except for the yuletide jerk who was fulfilling some dish-best-served-cold against the nephew’s parents for something they’d done, something horrible on par with clubbing baby seals.

It’s possible that it was his own parents who bought it at his request, but there are times when a parent has to look around and think, “I know that’s what he really wants, but it’s not a good idea.” Trust me on this…that’s how I came to own the damn drum set in the first place.


So I took a learn-at-home course in chainsaw juggling and cut off my own hands. It turns out I hadn’t actually bothered opening the learn-at-home yoga course and therefore wasn’t quite bendy enough to adapt to typing with my feet. That’s my very good reason for neglecting this blog since an entire season ago. Plus, it’s a way better story than “Now that I’m an author with a twelve-book deal, I’m just way too busy to give my brilliant content away for free.” Even I would want to punch me for that remark.

So I just got really super busy and couldn’t post anything, and besides, publishers hate seeing new blog posts and lots of Facebook selfies when they’re expecting a manuscript. But that smacks of that previous braggy comment, so I won’t go there either.

Lots of things have been happening since my last post, but since none of them involve gorgeous billionaires whisking me off to their red rooms or sparkly vampires, you won’t be seeing my life story played out on a big screen. I did purchase a bottle of urine the other day (and I’m quite pissed–get it? PISSED?!–that the holiday shipping woes mean I won’t get it until next week), so that’s probably going to work its way into a blog post soon, especially if our UPS guy pulls his usual douchy stunt of crushing everything he delivers. Actually, no…that is the story: our UPS guy is a douche and he crushes everything, so I ordered a bottle of urine just for the fun of having him explain that to his bosses.

But per the headline of this post, MERRY CHRISTMAS (or whatever appropriate holiday-themed greeting goes here in your world), and I promise to try to do better keeping this blog alive. It’s been a banner year for our handicapped goldfish, so maybe I can do it.


So I was bored the other day and started looking up recipes. Don’t get excited, I don’t plan to cook anything. I just like to look at the pictures and read the recipes and think to myself, “Wow, people who have time to make cornbread and shove it up a turkey’s ass really need to invest in Netflix.”

Even though I don’t plan to put any effort into cooking something, the thought of experimenting with recipes was intriguing so I started to take stock of my own culinary expertise. I eventually realized that the only really great recipe missing from my life is for a human marinade. Why would I need to marinate a human being, you ask? Please. It’s like you don’t even know me.

Let’s avoid violating the Fifth Amendment for a moment and assume that I need this awesome human rubbing spice concoction in case the apocalypse happens. Which apocalypse? Doesn’t matter. I’m just a girl who likes to be prepared to slow roast my fellow man in case of pending starvation…or in case I need to hide the body.

AllRecipes.com was shockingly low on marinade recipes that would fit the bill, so I had to do a little comparison shopping on my different cuts of meat and cross-reference the whole project with what I’d assume an actual person tasted like. We have to take into account things like the fact that adult humans should be fairly stringy and have used their meaty muscles a lot, in which case an alcohol-based marinade will help a lot with the gamey taste. We should also consider the fact that the apocalypse might end up being surprisingly low-carb once all the bread stuffs have molded, so I’ll want a sauce that pairs well with different natural sources of gluten and shrink-wrapped saltines. Sugary marinades are probably not a good idea because the last thing you want at the eat-your-neighbor end of the world is to be sluggish  since you’ll just end up marinating in someone else’s cook pot before nightfall.

Cooking methods were another conundrum. The obvious choice would be grilling over a low flame while the remainder of the meat smokes for later consumption, but the smell of succulentness will just bring on the hordes of hungry survivors and you’ll end up fighting for a pinkie toe before it’s over. Boiled meat is never good (sorry British readers), and we’re already eating a low-grade meat as it is. I think certain methods of cooking the meat in a pit of coals while covering it to trap the smoke might be the way to go.

Before anyone gets nervous or fidgety and thinks I’ve put way too much effort into my research, let me tell you that I drew the line at looking up good side dish recipe, for obvious reasons…I mean, what goes with human hamstring, right? Nothing! And besides, if I had a bunch of side dishes lying around, would I really be resorting to cannibalism? At least that’s the defense I plan to use with the judge.


Because my husband and I looked around at our situation in life and decided we had too much money (meaning we only have to eat Spam and ramen three days a week now instead of the usual seven), too much free time (now that we’ve maximized on the hours between midnight and four when we used to lay there doing nothing), and some calories that needed to be burned (not even going to explain that one), we decided to take up golf.

Let me explain what taking up golf means: well, wait, there’s really no need to decipher that for you. You’ve already got the visual, I’m sure.

Basically, we bought our dream house about five years ago and it happens to overlook the eleventh hole on a golf course. And other than sitting on our porch with coffee in the mornings and listening to people as early as six am whacking at golf balls, it’s never really made an impact on our lives.

Until now.

When my husband tried to tempt me with promises of how much fun it was going to be, I actually wasn’t a really hard sell. I like trying new things, I like being outside, and I like sports that require specific and goofy outfits. I did have two rules, however: 1) I’m not walking anywhere, and 2) I’m not playing thirsty, and by thirsty I actually mean sober. He was fine with my rules, so we launched our golf careers.

Luckily, we were already members of this country club because they happen to have a pool and we take the kids there every summer. It was a slight upgrade to include golf, and my brother-in-law had some old clubs he could loan us. We were set.

Our membership includes a free bucket of balls to hit at the driving range each day, so that’s where we decided to start. We would get really comfortable (re: look less stupid) at the driving range before actually attempting to play on the course. We were a go for golf!

Until we actually tried it and discovered there’s a reason they planted a wall of trees between the driving range and the nearby homes. I never actually heard glass breaking, but it could be that the homeowners had already replaced all of their windows with a combination of Plexiglass and gelatin sheeting before I ever tried.

While it was hard work and a little frustrating, the first round of hitting the balls from the driving range was actually going much better than I’d envisioned. Of course, I’d had enough limeritas by that point that it’s possible my awesome-looking ball hitting was all hallucination, and I didn’t care.

With only one ball left for each of us to hit, the unthinkable happened.

There I was, minding my own business, when a sharp pain in my very lower back indicated that my husband had teed off and hit me square in the ass with a golf ball. I crumpled like a washed up boxer with a glass jaw. My husband ran to my aid and (wait for it) pulled me up to standing so he could pull the waistband of my shorts down and see if there was actually a dent there. As he stood there publicly rubbing my ass, he yelled, “Please don’t blog about this!”

It was horrific, only made worse by the fact that I couldn’t keep a straight face long enough to make him feel really, really bad. I tried limping and clutching my back, hoping at least for another limerita out of this if not actual jewelry, but it was so damn funny that I couldn’t stop laughing while my mascara ran down my cheeks from the tears of pain.

Eventually the sharp stinging and exploding eye floaters subsided enough for him to fold me tenderly into the car. As we drove off, he started to say something but then stopped himself, declaring it was “too soon” to say it.

“It’s already out there, buddy, I know you started to say something. Go ahead, don’t be a coward!”

He looked at me as sympathetically as he could and said, “I’m really glad I hit you and not that old man!”


I speak Italian. There, I said it. With a name like Lorca Damon there was a really good chance that I spoke something, but I cleared that up in case you couldn’t pinpoint exactly which variety of mutt I identify with.

I also have a kick ass job that sends me to New York from time to time, and after a brief period when I didn’t realize I didn’t have to stay in a hotel that was technically located in New Jersey, I came to enjoy my trips. They’re one of the few times when I’m guaranteed both a dose of culture and an armadillo-free few days.

This most recent trip was last week, and a strange phenomenon occurred. I went to New York, did the whole “I’m really supposed to live here and not in a place that still accepts live chickens in exchange for medical care” (totally not kidding on that one, look it up) thing, and even ordered food in a restaurant in Hell’s Kitchen in Italian (see note above about speaking a foreign language). But then I started to identify with “my people,” and not necessarily in a good way.

First, the restaurant went something like this:

HIM: Buona sera, signora. (Good evening, madam)

ME: Buona sera. Di dove sei? (Good evening. Where are you from?) (Incidentally, isn’t this whole thing reading like your high school Spanish book?)

HIM: D’una citta’ vicino di Venezia. (From a city near Venice.)

ME: Da’vero! Anchio! (Really? Me too!)

HIM: Si? Di dov’e’? (Yes? Where are you from?)

ME: Da’un villagio si chiama Caldogno. E’ vicino di Vicenza. (From a village called Caldogno. It’s near Vicenza.)

HIM: Bene. La mia e’ piu di nordest. (Mine’s from farther northeast.)

ME: Ah, vicino Iugoslavia, se era’ ancora la’. (Oh, near Yugoslavia, well, if it was still there.)

HIM: Si’. (Figure it out)

Then the rest of the dinner started. Only it went like this (I shall henceforth drop the Italian because I got all nostalgic about Italy while typing that part and started drinking. No, the Italian still works just fine under the influence of wine, it’s the English translation that’s kind of throwing me off.)

HIM: Would you like to see the wine list?

ME: Oh no, I’ll just have a glass of merlot.

HIM: You don’t want merlot! I bring you something special.

(Later, after a glass of non-merlot…)

HIM: Have you decided on a first course?

ME: Oh, the bread is fine.

HIM: You can’t live on bread! I bring you something special. (“Something special” turned out to be cold tomato soup with a basil reduction. Oddly tasty, but it wasn’t actually bread.)

(Later…)

HIM: And for your second course?

ME: I’d like the grilled lamb with the insalata caprese. (Incidentally, if you’d paid attention during high school Spanish, you could at least be kind enough to insert the Spanish translation here for me. After all, I’ve been drinking. And I’m now weepy.)

HIM: Very nice. How do you want that prepared?

ME: Well done, please.

HIM: No! You don’t want it well done! I bring it medium rare.

Fortunately, the special wine took the edge off the fact that I was eating a plate of raw meat swimming in its own blood, served on a bed of NOT insalata caprese (sliced tomatoes with mozzarella) but on a bed of goose livers instead. The entire affair was very elegant and very home-like, but all I could think was, “I could be eating a fully cooked cheeseburger from a drive-thru, washing it down with a slushie.”

I’m back among my other people and I’m thankful, even though there is no wine list because they’re Baptist. And grape-intolerant. Luckily, they also don’t speak standard English so I still get to use my mad Berlitz skills. English-Redneck subtitles to follow.



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