I broke up my day of researching sutures and surgery/medicine from post Civil War era to go to a baby shower this afternoon. I was so into my quest to find information about ether and the use of Chloroform that I worked past the time I was nearly due to leave. As always, I hadn't bought the gift yet or the card. Still thinking of my coming scene in chapter two, I rushed to the store to pick up a card and some wrapping. I buy a cute card and decide on gift cards to a baby store.
I don't know about you, but I can never write anything worthwhile on a card. Some people write these great touching words that bring a tear to ones eye. Not me. Here I am a writer but put a card in front of me and I suddenly can't spell or remember the persons name I'm writing to. I think secretly people all long to come up with a saying on a card that is so terrific that the present is forgotten, the card passed around so other's could read the brilliance of your words.
Case in point. Here I am, already late, sitting in my car outside the store, pen in hand, gift wrapped and pen poised. I blank. Come on, come on, I tap the pen against my steering wheel. Come on, just write something! Anything!
Molly, I write...
Okay, got her name down, spelled correctly, looks nice as well. Okay, she's having a baby, say something about the baby. So, what do I write? what wonderful, inspired sweet, touching thing could I come up with?
Hope she's beautiful. What?! I wrote that on her fricken baby shower card? I stare at it. I can't believe I wrote that. Hope she's beautiful? I might as well have written "hope she's not butt ugly." "Hope she doesn't make people gag." "Hope she doesn't look like your husband."
I'm so late I contemplate just leaving it and hope my friend has a sense of humor. Not about her baby she won't, not bloody likely. With a big sigh, I toss it onto my passenger seat and head back inside for another card. I'm still thinking about how to rework my scene as I run back out to my car again.
This time I play it safe. I merely write her name at the top, date it and sign my name at the bottom. I stick it in the envelope, seal it and write her name on the card, done. If I can drive 80 on the freeway I won't be too terribly late.
As I'm driving there, the lime green envelope next to me catches my eye. I look at the card addressed to Katy. Katy? Who the hell is Katy? Damn it! I wrote my characters name on the damn card.
Sigh. I'm not buying another card, not at three or four dollars a pop. Maybe she won't notice. Going through so many presents and cards, she'll just pick mine up and open it without realize the name on the card isn't hers. Not even close.
I worry about it through the entire drive, coming up with elaborate scenarios to explain away the wrong name if asked. As it turned out. No one asked, I spend the whole afternoon way in the back talking with friends. When she got to my gift, she opens the card, reads it and then very loudly thanked "Judy" for the gift.
Jeesh. Doesn't she know my name is Julie?