Jess's poll

What's more demoralizing - dating, or job-hunting? Jessica poses the question, and gets some interesting answers!
Good morning.

Woke up, put on clothes wenmunchmunchmunchmunchmmmmmcandycandycandyyum


Happy Halloween

I was at a H'ween party in NYC with lots of writers last night. There was one person there dressed as Valerie Plame, and another dressed as Harriet Miers. And one girl dressed as pi. (She was wearing a shirt with pi to like the 31st decimal place.)



I had a writing project that I wanted to fix all week, but I didn't have time, and I hate the idea of working on it a little before work or a little after. So it ate at me all week. But after some work tonight and this morning, it's where I want it. That's quite a relief.

In other news, Vidiot told me that where I made a reference to homonyms earlier, it was actually homophones I meant. HomoNYMs are slightly different. I told my dad, and he said he was going to sue his elementary school teachers.

By the way, "Vidiot" is a combonym.



This blog never gets political, so maybe it's time.


That plan to give NYC subway riders a break around the holidays is stupid.
Thank you.

Recent quote from Dad

"I thought of a good homonym the other day: Summary and summery. Think of the ones you saw first, like waste and waist. That would be a good homonym."


The goat does not wear a watch. But I will find out his/her name by the end of the year. Even if it's just Billy or Nanny.


Really lost

My brother reports: "The next new episode of 'Lost' isn't until three weeks from now. That's annoying. At the end of the last episode, they showed scenes from the next episode. So if they have it, why can't they show it??"

In other news...

I thought 2006 would be the Year of Malice, but apparently he's starting early on his fanclub.



Don't worry, folks. Slowly but surely, it will feel like fall.


The collection containing the Carrie Pilby sequel is available on-line, and should be in stores in a week. You can also review it if you've read it (and have something nice to say, hopefully!)




Apostrophe Catastrophe

Does Veterans Day have an apostrophe in it? And...why the confusion? The Black Table published an article today that I wrote about this topic. I didn't write the headline...apparently their editors are even angrier about the apostrophe situation than I am!!!



Tropical Storm Wilma is expected to become a hurricane, and has helped tie a record for most storms. Oh, and it's raining again.


I post this every once in a while: I use this blog for concise thoughts and to keep readers updated on my projects; it only represents a small smidgeon of my personality and sometimes doesn't represent it at all, so if you are someone who only met me recently, please try not to make too many assumptions. There is more to me than what you see here. Also, I try not to get overly personal on it, so don't worry that you'll be blogized. Thank you, and now back to our program.



I was at a lovely wedding today. Many people whom I have become friends with in the last few years were also there, so it was fun. Here is a shot from this morning, where the bride and other members of the party are getting made up...I chose a photo where you can't see the faces clearly because the bride should be the one to decide if she puts up photos or not, but I know that a few people who were there like to read blogs, so this still gives the idea.


I found this post from a year ago (actually, 10/22/04):

On another note, I revised the first 50 pp. of my book some more this evening. If they were, like, pages 200-250, I wouldn't worry so much. But this is the beginning. I think I'm almost done. I see the light!
This morning's weather

For those not in the Northeast, this is the longest series of rainy days I think we have ever seen. And it's not just drizzle -- it's heavy rain and wind. It's like a five-day-long nor'easter.

It's kind of cool.



MY DAD: What do you need when you have a lawyer who's up to his neck in concrete?
ME: More concrete?
MY DAD: (disappointed) Oh...you've heard...ok, bye.


This morning's weather

Click for more!



Caren Lissner, Laurie Graff, and Melanie Murray
read from


(including the novella "Carrie Pilby's New Year's resolution")

Thursday, December 1, 2005
7:30 pm
Barnes & Noble
Eighth Street and Sixth Ave, West Village
(396 6th Ave at 8th Street)
NYC 10011

The book will be in stores and shipped from on-line orders in just two weeks!!
Click the link to order or read about it on Amazon.


That's Italian

Italian Carrie Pilby reader-turned-friend Alex P. was in New York for a trip, so we met up. Since he revealed he was a concert pianist, I forced him to play a song in my living room. He played "My Way." Appropriate choice!


"Gimmie Madonna. Nobody's gonna want her number next year, anyway." - Bruce Willis, episode 14, "Moonlighting"

I've been watching more episodes. It really was a brilliant show. Except when they screwed it up.

What's interesting about stuff circa 1985 is that it mostly looks modern. Go back a year or two before that and it's pure '80s -- the hair, the pop culture, etc. But by 1985/86, the hair was shrinking, some people had computers, and there were VCRs and cable (both mentioned in the 2nd season of Moonlighting).

But what's different -- and funny every time I see it -- is that whenever Maddie and David are in their car and need to make a phone call, they have to stop and use a pay phone. No signs of cell phones anywhere. So odd.
Gone phishing

Over the last several months, I've gotten many e-mails that look like they're from eB*y or PayP*l telling me to change my password because someone is trying to fradulently use my account, etc. But the e-mails themselves are fraudulent. The thing is, they use the proper logos and even e-mail address, so they look real. It would be easy to be suckered in, click the link and give financial information.

In the last few days, I've gotten some from AOL. But today was the best - I got one that totally looked like it was from the Red Cross. It has all the Red Cross logos inside, copy that was clearly stolen from a Red Cross website, and pictures of devastated houses and starving dogs. What gives it away is this sentence in the beginning:

Dear sir,
This are some of the tragic events wich we ask you to support all those people wich houses and all they had it is history :

Then it talks about measles, both hurricanes, etc. Then the last line is:

To help all this peoples click here.



It's cold

Anyone else having thermostat wars in their office? I put it on 73, someone else turns it down to 69, etc.
Suffered for his art

A 22-year-old poet named Dennis Kim was learning over the railing on the Christopher Street pier on the Hudson River, admiring it with his friend Jennifer two days ago, when his backpack full of romantic poetry fell in. He told her he couldn't let it go and jumped in to get it. Then the currents took him away.

It's such a sad thing. I wonder if some of his poetry is on-line. The Hudson River often looks pretty calm when you're standing over it, so people don't realize how strong those currents are...but it's very hard to get back out when you've gone in. I wonder if there should be signs at random points reminding people of that. Yeah, yeah, I know, you might think that's a stupid suggestion, but I'm just saying "maybe."


The debate

The NJ vs. NYC debate was a lot of fun tonight. It was a silly issue, and thus a silly debate (I didn't realize that NJ has a high percentage of sliding doors that are dangerous to bears). I think New Jerseyans get a bit tired of hearing their state maligned, and of Manhattanites constantly being afraid to leave Manhattan for a few seconds to come to NJ - usually because Manhattanites have to justify their high rents by spending every minute in Manhattan. Well, that was my premise, anyway. I also said NYC is a lovely place to visit, but I mentioned the murder rate of 600 per year. Disclaimer: I love Manhattan too, which is why I live near there (for now)...I just don't think NJ is inferior.

My debating opponent, poet Boni Joi, was very clever and funny and had a good response to a Frank Sinatra question from the audience. Someone tried to say that they slaughter pigs in Secaucus, but I pointed out that that stopped 50 years ago (or thereabouts). Oh, snap!

I have to thank all of the people who turned out, no matter which side they were on - including Anonymous Bob, great blogger Brother Lawrence, brilliant writer Ned (who was largely a few blocks down for the Happy Endings reading series, where he was reading with the talented Will Leitch whose debut novel "Catch" comes out in two months), and some people who I'm not sure have their own web pages: Carly, Matt, Joel, moderator Todd, and probably several others. If I forgot you, I appreciate it.

I don't usually namecheck (or namedrop), but I wanted to thank those folks. And you, if you were there, too. Surprisingly, a large Jersey contingent came out! We still lost 12 to 13, but what the heck.

Some of the debate will appear on the fabulous TV cable show Across the Hudson, soon to be airing on both sides of the river.

Okay, it's around midnight and I should really start getting to work (ha ha).



I'm debating tonight (Wed) whether "New Jersey is inferior to New York City." Of course it isn't. Debate starts at 8 p.m. at Lolita bar, 266 Broome St, New York, NY 10002-4509 (212) 966-7223.

The gig is up

Or is that jig? Anyway, Two people e-mailed me today to tell me that combonyms are "portmanteau words." Wikipedia says:

A portmanteau (plural: portmanteaux or portmanteaus) is a word that is formed by combining both sounds and meanings from two or more words. It can also be called a frankenword. The term used in linguistics is blend ... This word was coined by Lewis Carroll in Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There, in which it is likened to a travelling case. He used the French word "porte-manteau" (coat hanger). Carroll has Humpty Dumpty say, "Well, slithy means lithe and slimy... You see it's like a portmanteau—there are two meanings packed up into one word."

Interestingly, Wikipedia also notes that "Californication" is an example. Those guys sure have a sense of humor.

I still think combonym is a better term.


Trivilous Combonyms

Melbow - n. the elbow of a guy named Mel.

Anyway, since this letter was from Norway, I should reprint it:

Hi Miss Lissner, this one’s for you:
If you write a book on combonyms, shouldn’t it be called a blok?
Blok Pronunciation: bl k \ nounAn idea that sprung out of a blog but eventually turned into a book project.
-Nils, Norway

I think blook is better.


Things I saw in New York

Oh, reminder: I am still debating on "Is New Jersey inferior to New York City?" on Wednesday night at 8 at Lolita Bar in Manhattan. It won't exactly be formal or serious.
Get your sequel now:

Apparently, you can order Scenes from a Holiday, including the Carrie Pilby sequel, and receive it a matter of moments if you go to the page below! And you get it really cheaply!



More combonyms (TM)

Carl from Baton Rouge (who apparently has six animals and people staying with him post-flood) submits:

Novertime. n. Hours you work, beyond 40 per week, but for which you do not get paid.

OK. Other folks: If you have more, put them on your own blogs, so we can start a revolution of combonyms!

Maybe I should put together a book of these. It seems like everything has been done, but I'd do it.