Kage Baker did a surprisingly good Blanch De Bois imitation. She wasn’t the sort of woman poor Blanche is, but she could summon an astounding Southern drawl from the depths of her maternal genome. Kage could coo like a born Steel Magnolia when she wanted to, especially on Blanche’s signature line: I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.
With a toss of her braid, and a flutter of an invisible fan – at which point, Kage would relax and add, “And what I can depend on them to do is to pay me no attention at all!” And since that was what she pretty much wanted from strangers, she was cool with it. Her friends were sufficient unto the the day.
And so are mine. One of the greatest blessings of a fairly exciting life is the quality of friend I have managed to attract over the several decades I’ve been careering around the world. They are astonishing in both variety and virtue; and they include all you, my Dear Readers, whom I never expected to meet and am so glad that I have.
Occasionally, one must gird up one’s petticoats, and cast both dignity and available bread on the waters. Hopefully, one’s friends will be of assistance – if nothing else, they can help one gather up the soggy bread and get it back in the basket. And if ever strangers are going to exhibit any kindness, this is the time to let them know their chance has come.
As you know, I have an unhelpful heart condition; it limits how much I can walk or garden, and makes me susceptible to heat. I also am living in a drought of Biblical proportions (as are many of you, Dear Readers). Consequently, I have embarked upon 2 projects to improve life and my water usage: 1) convert the front lawn in xeriscaping, and 2) install a mini ductless split air conditioning unit in my study.
Unfortunately, although the DWP in Los Angeles is offering rebates to convert lawns, it doesn’t like the kind of grass we have planted and so has denied us membership in the program (we’re working on that). Also, while LA County does offer some programs to assist with cooling systems, they only offer money for humungous damn big ones: what I need is tiny, abstemious, frugal and thus not eligible. (I’m working on that, too, and if some money expected from Italy arrives, I shall be set.)
Sp I’ve started a Go Fund Me campaign. I’m not announcing this to ask any of you specifically to help out; but if you know anyone who might be interested in a weird charity – why, I’m your girl! There will be some rewards and thank you’s in this eventually, too. I know I have a couple of boxes of signed copies of this and that (signed by KAGE!!!), and I’ll happily make them available as prizes.
The link is http://www.gofundme.com/xf45dk. Spread it around! And don’t think you have to contribute – just helping me spread the word will be an enormous help. The prizes will show up in the next couple of days, once I’ve counted what’s to hand. There’s a fair selection, though, including some foreign copies and even some in foreign languages.
In other news, my concussion is doing very well. Me, not as much – my head aches abominably and I am still prone to dizzy fits, but that’s what you get when invisible cats give you contra coup head injuries. I’m being sensible, avoiding bright lights and loud noises, and not driving. That last is especially nice for other people.
So, Dear Readers – please forgive me for taking the Blanch Du Bois route myself. But I’ll do most anything to keep writing, and cutting the utility bills and avoiding heat stroke are minor matters indeed.
Just imagine it all in Kage’s smoky alto, and her patented North Carolina drawl …