October 19, 2011


Dear Friends,

I'm delighted to tell you all that my debut novella, HOME, is now available on Amazon.com!
If any of you are inclined to help out a poor, starving writer and purchase a copy, and would like it signed, contact me at carsonbuckingham@yahoo.com and let me know.  I'll give you my address and you can send me a stamped, self-addressed envelope and I will send you back a really nifty bookplate that I have signed, or written whatever you want on, and you can stick it onto the inside cover.  I designed the bookplates, and they are pretty cool.

I'm so excited, I just may piddle myself!

Hugs all around,

October 11, 2011


I’m here to tell you that, as far as domestic abilities go, I’m on the scale somewhere between tap water and road kill.
The reason for this is that I was forced to take Home Economics in high school.  The cooking class was filled, so I got stuck in the sewing class, with all the other kids who had been sewing since birth and were only taking the class, in my opinion, to show off.
Our first assignment was to go out and buy both patterns and material for our projects.  I decided that I would show those smug little bitches, and I bought an elaborate pattern for a dress that was styled after, I think, an Elizabethan coronation gown.  It was just gorgeous, and I had decided that it would be just perfect to wear to the Prom.  With that in mind, I spent most of my college money on a bolt of rich, sea green silk, not to mention all the brocade and beadwork that would be attached later.
I showed up for class the next day all excited about my project.  The other girls stared with open jealousy at my pile of silk, until the teacher, Miss Guano, walked in and we got started.
“Well, Carson,” she said with undisguised admiration, “that’s certainly an ambitious project.  I’m sure it will be absolutely lovely when you’ve finished it.”
“Thanks.  I’m planning on wearing it to the Prom.”
“How wonderful!”
Now, understand, I had never even sat at a sewing machine before in my life, much less actually used one.  Miss Guano had me practice with a couple of remnants until I felt confident about my ability to sew a straight line.  I’m nothing if not a fast learner, and in ten minutes, I felt ready.  But first, I had to pin the flimsy paper pattern to my silk, then cut out the pieces of my dress.
No problem.  I finished just as the bell rang.  The next day, I’d start to sew it together.
I could hardly sleep that night for all the visions I had of myself, dressed like Cinderella at the ball, dancing with my current handsome prince.  Well, okay, he had a few zits…well, more than a few…but he was a nice person and he got all my jokes, so the pizza face was easier to forgive.
Anyhow, the next day, I took my appointed seat behind a sewing machine in the Home Ec. Room and began sewing.  I sewed like a fiend every day for a month.
At last, it was done, and it looked even better than I expected it would.
Then I tried it on.
It was a nightmare come true.
To start with, the right sleeve was longer than the left sleeve.  However, I found that if I dropped my left arm two inches and raised my right shoulder about three inches, the sleeves were perfect.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t all that was wrong with it.
The left side of the dress was longer than the right side.  It looked as if the left side had been sewn to fit Geena Davis and the right side tailored for Dr. Ruth.  But I found that if I leaned right about six inches, both sides balanced.
Then there was the problem with the front and the back.  Front too long, back too short.  Leaning backward five inches solved that problem.
That just left the neckline.  It was low cut on one side and straight cut on the other.  Not to worry.  If I just pulled down a little on the straight part and held it there with my elbow, it was just fine.
Ah, I was a positive vision…with my right shoulder raised five inches higher than my left, listing to port six inches, while bent backward five inches and clutching the bottom of my neckline with my elbow.
I was ready for that Prom, by God!
We swept in on the night of the dance, and were greeted by a receiving line of faculty chaperones.  While walking onto the dance floor, I overheard two of the teachers say:
        “Isn’t it too bad about that poor girl’s deformity?”
        “Yes,” said the other, “but doesn’t her dress fit beautifully?”

October 3, 2011


This week, I’m going to discuss the movies that depress me and the reasons behind such depression.
SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE:  This movie depressed me because I know that no matter what I do, I will never be as cute and perky as Meg Ryan.
MOBY DICK:  This turned out to be about whales rather than the  weird sexual disorder that I was looking forward to.  Very depressing.
MARS ATTACKS:  This depressed me because, by the time the picture was over, everybody was dead.
MYSTERY MEN:  This depressed me because by the time the picture was over, everybody wasn’t dead.
DOGMA:  The only remotely interesting characters were mute.  Ten minutes into the movie, I found myself wishing I were deaf.
The TWILIGHT movies:  This was the cinematic reunion of the graduates from the Hulk Hogan School of Acting.
Kenneth Branagh’s HAMLET:  In a move that defies rational explanation, Jack Lemmon was cast as Marcellus—because, when I think Shakespeare, oh yeah, I think Jack Lemmon.  If only Branagh had cast Walter Matthau as Ophelia, we could have had “The Odds Bodkins Couple.”
A BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK:  It depresses me to think that Lee Marvin, Walter Brennan, and Ernest Borgnine were ugly when they were young, too…and that that was the best they were ever going to look.
ALL THE BATMAN FILMS:  I’m depressed that they haven’t yet asked me to play Batman.  They’ve had nearly everyone else in that role.
THAT STUPID MOVIE ABOUT ALIENS THAT STARRED CHARLIE SHEEN:  It depressed me to think that Hollywood, even for a moment, could think that Charlie Sheen would be believable as an astrophysicist, when I have my doubts that he can even spell the word.  However, I must admit that he is the very embodiment of the first syllable…
GOODFELLAS:  I find it difficult to be entertained by gunplay and bloodshed that occurs outside my immediate family.
THE BLOB:  Put glasses on it, and you have my ex-husband.  If that isn’t depressing, I don’t know what is.
BARTON FINK:  I find it really depressing that John Turturro, with his huge acting range of exactly one facial expression that I like to call “tentative dementia” received an Oscar nomination, and John Goodman, who did an astounding acting job in this film, got squat.
THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER and GROSSE POINT BLANK:  It profoundly depresses me that I’m too old for John Cusack and too young for Sean Connery.  It also depresses me that my age doesn’t make a damned bit of difference, because it’s not as if either one of them will be dropping by for coffee tomorrow…or ever.
BEING JOHN MALKOVICH:  It’s depressing, and also deeply disturbing that Hollywood was unable to set its sites any higher than a portal into an actor.  Is this really the best we can aspire to?  What about “Being Ben Franklin” or “Being Mark Twain”?  Those two are more interesting dead than Malkovich is alive, anyway.
THELMA & LOUISE:  I find nothing more depressing than when stupidity is portrayed as “cool.”
GEORGE WASHINGTON SLEPT HERE:   It is a source of ultimate depression that I’ll never get to meet Jack Benny.
IF IT’S TUESDAY, IT MUST BE BELGIUM:  True this is a much older film, but it depresses me because, in my house, if it’s Tuesday, it must be laundry.