For the past four weeks I've been taking an online writing class from Gotham Writers' Workshop. I really like it and I'm only goofing with the creative writing class right now but I plan to keep going with it. Its too much fun.
I will fully admit that when I realized I had to turn in homework each week I got a little twitchy. Some of the assignments have not been that exciting for me. Topics that don't thrill but I did them anyway because, well, I had to. But I figured its good practice at any rate and I've gotten a lot better at revising my stories so that's a good thing.
But last week I giggle snorted myself silly when I read the assignment. I was sure that the teacher had been sensing my need for something more...creative. Here's what it was:
"Make a list of five pet peeves. Pick the most eccentric and write about it."
Seriously? This is homework? Rarely am I specifically asked to be a smartass. I made my list (truth be told it was longer then five items. Who only has five pet peeves? Anyone who says they do is a dirty liar, don't believe them.) and wrote it up in about fifteen minutes. I swear, this shouldn't be homework. My first thought was that this was just like a blog post. So I figured, I'll post it here too.
I got the feedback from my teacher on it today. I giggle snorted again. Here is the first couple sentences:
This is very funny. How odd, and wonderful.
(I have to admit that I was a little nervous to submit this. The woman teaching the class is a prize winning writer and has interviewed a lot of people. It kind of felt like handing Wolfgang Puck a reheated burrito from a gas station for a meal.)
I'm odd and wonderful. **giggle** **snort** **giggle** Okay, I'm done now. Here it is:
It’s been yet another long day; I’ve settled into the sofa and clicked on the telly. And there he is. The inflated urgency of his voice, the inane promises of miracles, the frantic pace of the presentation all add up to one thing: annoying. What automotive test engineers seek to accomplish in a 0-60 test, he can do in half a second. He can take my mood from calm to wickedly aggravated in the blink of an eye.
I don’t care about Oxyclean or Kaboom or OrangeGlo. In fact, Mr. Mays, if the only thing standing between me and million dollars was the use of your products, I’d apply for welfare. Watching your commercials is like watching a bad accident. I know I shouldn’t look at it and I should flip the channel, but it never ceases to amaze me how ridiculous you look waving your arms around and talking with an enthusiasm that rivals the textbook definition of insanity. I can’t imagine having to spend any time with you outside of the twenty seconds I spend giving you dirty looks you can’t see.
My life will not be better by using your products. In fact, I think I’ve lost too many brain cells already having to listen to your ludicrous sales pitches. I’ve been keeping track. I’ve got a little notebook by the sofa and every time one of your commercials comes on, I make a tick mark. There are enough marks there now to make me worry about a heart attack for all the times you’ve raised my blood pressure. I’d rather have stained clothing, spots on the carpet and crusty looking furniture then spend one penny on any of your wonder products.
My only hope is that you’ve struck some deal with the devil. That is the only explanation I will accept as to why you are allowed to continue your campaign of torture. It appears you won’t be satisfied until you’ve driven everyone over the edge. You may want to consider the fact that we won’t be able to buy your products if we’ve all committed suicide. So please, Mr. Mays, take your fingernails-on-a-rusty-chalkboard voice and go find someone else to torment. I will not give you one penny of my money. Oh wait, maybe that’s a lie. Maybe I would pay you. In fact, I’m sure there is something that I would gladly give you money for…a TV smart enough to know when your commercials are coming on that can mute itself.