Bobby Mendoza: age 23 dark brown curly hair. Brown eyes 5’10” hundred 80 pounds with a slim physique and a defined six-pack Greek /Latino mixed heritage
KV: who are you?
Bobby: what’s it to you?
KV: drop the attitude, Bob!
Bobby: it’s Bobby, never Bob. Get it right or else!
KV: okay fine, be a jerk. What do you do for a living?
Bobby: I’m a pizza chef. I work for my dippy do-gooder uncle. I hate the job but I get to flirt with the cute ladies know what I mean?
KV: do they let you?
Bobby: mostly, I mean face it, I’m hot! Who could resist this real estate?
KV: what about Halle Greenwood?
KV: the woman you almost raped!
Bobby: oh her, she had it coming. I was being nice and she totally burned me. I had to let her know who was the boss.
KV: did your mom teach you to be this way?
Bobby: you leave my mama out of this!
KV: no Bobby, this is important.
Bobby: fine, she’s weak. She met my dad beat us. She never stood up for me sure she gives me what I want why not take advantage of that.
KV: I bet she’d be ashamed if she knew you were drugging women to have sex with them.
Bobby: I don’t care!
KV: so what are your plans?
Bobby: I’m in a finish what I started with Greenwood. Then I’m going to get the guy who interfered with my little party.
KV: how do you feel about Hollywood?
Bobby: everyone is so freaking phony, they all want something!
KV; sounds a lot like you!
Bobby: don’t ever compare me to them!
KV: or what, you’ll kill me?
Bobby: now there’s an idea I can get behind!
KV: are you prepared to pay the consequences should you get caught?
Bobby: I’m not going to get caught. And if I were you I would watch my back! I’m outta here. Sayonara sucker!
Karen Vaughan is currently slaving away at her NaNo novel, so she hasn’t had time to post here today. That’s okay! Dellani to the rescue. In case you didn’t know it, Karen writes some wonderful, crazy, funny mysteries. Some folks would call them ‘cozy’ but I just call them great! Below is a review of her book, Dead on Arrival.
Laura Hamilton didn’t know what she was expecting when she got up that Monday morning, but it sure wasn’t finding a dead body in her living room. Yes, a dead man! Apparently delivered sometime over the weekend, he was currently adorning her living room carpet.
Jeff Gibbons, the inspector called to the scene, isn’t quite sure what to make of Laura, but he has a gut instinct. Even if she does know the victim, she’s not guilty. A fact which is brought to light when it becomes apparent that someone’s out to get her.
Gerry, the building super, is a long term friend of Laura’s. Insisting on protecting her, he takes Laura into his home to keep her safe. Soon, he’s sharing his space with Laura and her Siamese two cats—Sean and Seamus.
No matter what she does, Laura keeps getting dragged deeper into this ridiculous set of circumstances. When more dead bodies show up, she decides enough is enough. She and Gerry do what they can to help Inspector Gibbons find the killer.
Dead On Arrival is a wonderfully lighthearted mystery that moves at a lively pace. Vaughan’s humor adds an interesting dimension to her story, keeping it from being too grim. Her dialogue is sprightly, fleshing out the characters. Even minor players have very distinct personalities.
I enjoyed Laura and Gerry’s amateur sleuthing as they muddle through, trying to keep Laura safe while they figure out who’s trying to kill her and why.
Five Golden Acorns for Vaughan’s debut book. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes a lighthearted mystery with plenty of intrigue.
Just over an hour later, Bob knocked on the door and called softly to me. I got up and turned on the light, time to get ready for work. Then I realized I didn’t have my uniform. Jerking open the door, I was ready to call Bob, but he was standing there with my uniform in his hands.
“Tina and I stopped by on the way to her job. The police are concentrating their efforts on the other apartment.” He looked chagrined when he said that. “Tina talked to the cops and they let her in, allowed her to get some personal stuff out for you both, so you have your uniform and some other things. They won’t let you back in for awhile, but at least you won’t be naked.” He chuckled softly, eyeing me critically. “Not that like that would be a bad thing,”
I shoved him playfully with one hand grabbing my uniform with the other and shut the door in his face with my hip.
“I’ll just wait out here then,” his voice was muffled by the wood.
But, here they were. Lylith, Lady Pinne, Rachel and her new admirer, Hamlin, as well as the knight Trevalin and even Master Calbraum… all willing to help him merely because he had told the truth instead of trying to steal what he needed. He was amazed.
“These people don’t really exist, do they?” he muttered aloud as he felt the warm form of Gala slip into a spot beside him. She was his back up. Since the Journeymen had hired her, she was his best bet on finding them. Though, to be honest, neither of them knew exactly where to go. This whole force of magda and arms were only going to be applicable if the journeyman took the bait.
“Do people really do this much to help each other?” he marveled, but Gala brought in the touch of reality that he needed.
“No. They want to arrest the Journeyman and you are their best way of finding him. Otherwise, we’d be on our own, Keen,” she stated flatly.
“Thanks, Gala.” He snorted. “You always know how to make me feel special.”
I received an email yesterday from a friend, fellow author, who knew of a child who had killed themselves due to a cycle of bullying. I didn’t know the details, and I didn’t ask about them; I knew it never should have happened. It happens too often, and these days, with social media, anyone can be a victim.
This issue breaks my heart, kids being bullied at school or elsewhere, but being pushed to the point of a child taking their lives is gut-wrenching in the worst possible way. I often wonder what the child/ teen was thinking in those last moments. How disturbing that they’d be in that position at all. Did anyone, anyone, stop to think about their mental well being before push, push, pushing, them over the edge that one last time? And therein lies the problem; no one has a clue what someone else is going through or deals with on a daily basis in regards to mental health issues.
What is manageable for one kid, isn’t manageable for another at all. I have a child that has suffered from issues that no one knows about, and I wonder about the thousands upon thousands of kids that experience the same. They’re fragile. They’re beautiful. They’re undeserving of being pushed because they’re different. Until my child was stronger and could fend for themselves, if need be, I lived in fear on a daily basis of losing them to the world. I was fortunate, but even as an adult, their struggles are real.
This topic, bullying, is so near and dear to my heart I wrote a piece titled The Greenlee Project. It’s a book about the consequences of bullying and cyberbullying is a Gold Recipient of the Mom’s Choice Awards, the 2017 International Book Award Winner for YA Social Issues, and won the first place at the 16th annual North Texas Book Festival (NTBF) for YA and General Fiction. It showcases the all-too-common anonymous and cruel betrayals of others through social media, of such magnitude that it devastates a young teen, her friends, family, and the community.
Cyberbullying or bullying affects not just the victims, but everyone around them. After being the target of cyberbullying, what Greenlee does next is shocking. I sincerely hope you enjoy my work and if you have a tween or teen, you’ll share this book with them. If this book prevents one child from being hurt or causes kids to think twice about their actions, then I’ve done my job. Enjoy this excerpt.
All rights reserved. Published 2014 by Progressive Rising Phoenix Press, LLC Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
The bus pulled away from the curb slowly, but the shift in gear caused such a jolt that it shook Greenlee’s whole body and woke her up, leaving her dazed and confused. Her eyes tried to focus on the fabric pattern on the seats. It hadn’t registered to Greenlee that she was still on the bus until then. A stale odor wafted through the aisle and filled her nostrils. The smell was nauseating, but brought her back to reality quick enough . . . Greenlee stared out the window with no idea where she was. She didn’t recognize a thing. Hanging her head in her hands, she closed her eyes and thought back to the events that had taken place and brought her to this moment.
Cole’s laughter had rung in her ears and flashbacks of kids pointing fingers and laughing at her raced once again through her mind. Embarrassed, she sank down in her seat. Her heart burdened and heavy, she knew that she couldn’t stay there much longer.
Glancing out the window, Greenlee tried to recognize something, anything, but she realized without a doubt that she was lost. She panicked. Nervously she stood up and moved toward the front of the bus. As if she were invisible, she avoided eye contact and waited for the door to open.
The bus stopped and the doors swished open. Greenlee noticed that the bus driver was staring at her. The woman had an odd look on her face and her mouth opened as if she wanted to say something, but she didn’t. Greenlee couldn’t discern if the lady was concerned or if she owed her more money. As if purposely biting her tongue, the driver simply shook her head, clenched her mouth shut, and waited for Greenlee to step down. As soon as she did, the doors closed behind her and the bus pulled away.
Greenlee stood on the pavement, not sure which direction she should go. Her phone vibrated and it occurred to her that she hadn’t talked to a single person all day. Avoiding people forever was impossible and she knew that, but for now it seemed like a plan. She had twenty-eight missed calls, eleven voicemails and fifty-four texts. Greenlee deleted them all without listening or reading a single one of them. She couldn’t deal with it, not right then anyway, even knowing the consequences for what she’d just done. Marianne’s intentions were good, but she was becoming a problem with her nonstop calling. The phone vibrated again and against her will, Greenlee answered.
“What’s up?” she asked.
“Are you kidding me? What’s up? That’s all you have to say?” Marianne said angrily.
Greenlee didn’t want to talk, let alone argue with her. She already felt like a piece of malleable meat, beat to a pulp for someone else’s enjoyment. Regardless of Marianne’s intention, being chewed out wasn’t her idea of a phone call. Her cell phone pressed against her ear, Greenlee heard the words, but her mind was a million miles away. For the first time, the saying in one ear and out the other made total sense to her. Marianne kept talking but Greenlee wasn’t listening . . . then dead silence. Finally, Marianne had caught on.
“Okay, I’m sorry, I admit it. I’m not thinking clearly. I’m worried about you. Are you all right?” Marianne asked softly.
What a stupid question! Of course, she wasn’t all right. Greenlee didn’t respond. Her throat felt as if it was closing up and she couldn’t breathe. Who was she kidding? She couldn’t have talked through the tears anyway. She wanted to scream into the phone, “No, you idiot; I’m not all right. I’m anything but all right. I’m a mess. How come you don’t know that?” Keeping her mouth shut, she just listened.
“Greenlee, where are you?”
Greenlee glanced at the street sign above her head and mumbled the name of the street written on the sign above her, adding, “I don’t really know where I am. I mean I’m not sure that I really care.”
“I can send someone to come and get you,” Marianne said quietly.
The comment both surprised and alerted Greenlee to the unusual situation that she now found herself in. She declined. She had mixed feelings about that, wanting to be safe but at the same time not wanting to see or talk to anyone, at least not yet. She knew she faced an impending confrontation with her parents and she was avoiding it. Not for her sake, but for theirs—the humiliation she believed that she had caused them was too much to bear and having not been able to handle it only infuriated her.
“No, thanks. I’ll use the GPS and go from there. If I need you, I’ll call,” Greenlee said calmly.
“Greenlee, I just don’t think that’s a good idea. Are you sure?”
Marianne was disappointed, realizing that she’d been dismissed.
“Yes, I’m sure. I’ll call. Okay?” Greenlee said, knowing that she wasn’t going to call her back.
Greenlee was dismissive and Marianne felt ditched. Hurt and disappointed that Greenlee hadn’t trusted her, she reminded herself it wasn’t about her. Once again she forced the idea of contacting Greenlee’s parents out of her head, but had resolved in her mind that if they called her, she’d tell them what she knew. For Greenlee’s sake, she wouldn’t leave her out there in her mental state by herself.
Greenlee pulled up the GPS on her phone. She was twenty-eight miles from home. How in the heck had that happened? Suddenly she felt fearful and started to panic. She hit speed dial D.
“Greenlee, where in the hell are you? We’ve been trying to call you all day!” Matt Granger said.
He didn’t wait for her to respond and kept firing questions at her one right after the other and immediately Greenlee felt that she’d made a mistake.
“What are you playing at? Where are you? What are you doing?” he asked with a slight hesitation. “Where have you been?” After a pause, he said, “We’ve been worried sick!” Breathing deeply, he continued, “Greenlee . . . Greenlee, where are you now?”
Greenlee blurted out the first thing that came to mind. “Dad, I don’t really know,” she said. “And if you don’t mind, I really don’t want to talk about this right now!”
“You called me,” he snapped.
Her dad bit his lip, took another deep breath, and as calmly as he possibly could in that particular moment said, “Greenlee, we’re definitely going to talk about it; maybe not at this very second, but you can rest assured that we will talk about it!”
“Dad, please, could you just come and get me? Please.” Another slight pause and he could hear her exhale, “I don’t even know where I am . . . I know you’re mad and disappointed in me, but please, can you just come and get me?”
A combination of relief and fear swept over him with such magnitude that he was forced to bat away his own tears. The photo of Greenlee that sat on his desk didn’t help: all smiles, sparkling eyes, and freckles across her cute button nose. It took him back to the days when he’d lift her in his arms and swing her around and around until she begged him to stop. He took a deep breath and spoke as softly as he could without breaking down.
“I’m not mad at you, Greenlee,” he said softly, “or disappointed in you. Don’t say that. But we will talk about this and you know that we will!” He grabbed his jacket and his keys. “I’m on my way. Don’t move from that spot and text me the street address.”
“Don’t talk to strangers!” He slammed down the phone and left his office.
As the air chilled, Greenlee realized that she was starving and cold. She wondered if she should ask her dad to stop and grab her a bite to eat, but given the circumstances, she figured it wasn’t the best time to ask for a favor. She kept her head down, hoping to avoid eye contact with the people on the street. She wasn’t used to being in the city by herself, especially at that hour, and the hustle and bustle of people that spilled onto the concrete made her fearful. Fortunately, no one was paying much attention to her, and that brought her some comfort. She shivered as a gust of wind blew through her body. Her hands clambered to grab her sweatshirt and wrap it as tightly around herself as she could. She continued to wait for her dad, who seemed to be taking too long. In less than twenty-four hours she had gone from not wanting to see her dad at all, to feeling relieved that he was finally pulling up to the curb.
The car door opened and she slid into the front seat without saying a word. Her dad asked her if she was hungry and Greenlee nodded gratefully. He pulled into the first fast-food place they came to and he ordered a burger and a large coffee. Handing her the brown soggy bag, he continued driving home.
Greenlee spoke first. Her voice echoed with the sound of distress, her pitch inconsistent, and she frantically tried to compose herself to speak without trembling. It was impossible. Reaching over, he grasped her hand. He never took his eyes off the road and didn’t offer any kind words—his simple gesture was enough. It was heartfelt, meaningful, filled with love and compassion, and touched Greenlee beyond any words that he could have chosen anyway. Gently he squeezed her hand in his, and she tried to speak.
“I . . . I can’t go back there, Dad, I just can’t. I thought I could,” she said as the tears flowed uncontrollably down her cheeks. She swallowed, sucked in a gasp of air, exhaled, and tried to continue.
“The whole thing is just too unfreaking believable. I can’t wrap my head around it. I still feel so stupid.”
She wasn’t hungry anymore but took another bite from her half-eaten burger, chewed a moment too long, swallowed, and looked at him as he continued to drive.
“I’m begging you, Dad, please, please don’t make me go back there. I still need to do what I’m doing, just maybe somewhere new.”
Her words and the tone with which she said them broke his heart. He hurt for her. He was angry for her, angry at himself for not having known, and furious with the kids who were involved. His daughter! Terrible for anyone’s daughter, but it was his daughter. Swallowing hard, he struggled to find the right words. His voice sounded different than usual: shaky but soft, concerned, but definitely filled with anguish. Greenlee studied his face for a moment but was forced to turn away. Tears had filled her dad’s eyes, and though it would have killed him to know, Greenlee felt humiliation engulf her as she realized that she had inadvertently brought her father to tears and caused him such pain.
“It was cruel and I still want to kill him, hurt him, and the others for that matter,” Matt Granger said. “And of course I can’t kill him. I’m angry, no, make that furious! I’m disgusted and mad at myself for not protecting you.” He couldn’t look at her, but he had to ask, “Greenlee, how did I not know?”
Greenlee put down the burger and whispered, “It’s easy, Dad, I didn’t even know!”
He stopped at a red light, released his grip on her hand, and took a sip of coffee. Clearing his throat, he tried to speak again, but he couldn’t. The words simply would not come. Rage had taken over and fearful of scaring her, he put his foot on the gas pedal and moved forward into the flow of traffic again.
“If you don’t go back, you’ll have to transfer. If you transfer, they win. You can’t let them win. You are better than they will ever dream of being. I hope you know that. I hope, Greenlee, that you see just how amazing you are. I think you should return to school. I don’t know how hard this will be for you. I’d be lying if I said I did. But I do know this”—he hesitated, choosing his words carefully—“you have to do this; you have to do this for yourself.”
He never said another word and Greenlee didn’t offer any either, there was no point. The inevitable was around the corner, but how she’d deal with the situation once she went back to school, facing the people who had put her through hell, remained to be seen.
The principal had been calling their house all day long. He didn’t mention the calls the school had made to Greenlee.
“We assure you,” the principal had said, “if anything else has happened, anything at all, we will handle it appropriately. Any student that may have been involved in this dreadful situation, if it was brought up again, will be disciplined to the full extent that the district is able to.” He hesitated and added, “Mrs. Granger, you have to know that we do not under any circumstances approve of this behavior.”
The principal waited for any assurance that he was handling the situation appropriately, but that affirmation wasn’t about to come. Mrs. Granger was angry and her words were sharp and bitter.
“What am I supposed to tell her?” she asked. “That you’re handling it as best you can?” She wasn’t thinking, just spouting words. “How do I explain that you’re handling the situation to the best of your ability? Greenlee is devastated and rightfully so. She’ll never get over this.”
She despised the sarcasm in her own voice; she tried to bite her tongue, but the poison, the bitter tone toward him, continued to flow, her voice hissing as the words attacked on behalf of her daughter.
“Clearly I’m not thinking straight,” she muttered through gritted teeth. “My apologies to you for my tone, but not to those kids, and for that, I make no apologies. I can’t imagine, as I’m sure you can’t, how Greenlee must be feeling right now.”
She didn’t wait for an answer or say goodbye; she simply hung up the phone and burst into tears. Where was Greenlee? Why hadn’t she called? She glanced at the phone, but it still didn’t ring.
Free Range Farm and he has a score to settle with Janoose.
How will the fox get his revenge?
Janoose finds her job at the feather factory in trouble! Bags of feathers are disappearing, and Janoose is puzzled over how this is happening. But with help from her true friends at Free Range Farm, she will solve this mystery!
I’m painting the pictures for my next children’s picture book: Janoose and The Fall Feather Fair. This book is a sequel for my children’s book, Janoose The Goose. The Fox returns to Free Range Farm and again, he wants something from Janoose! What is it THiS Time!
Review by Emma KnightleyThis is a great read aloud book for families with young children. You can use fun voices until your children can read on their own. This is a sequel to the original Janoose the Goose, but can be read on it’s own too. The colorful illustrations add to the enjoyment for both the children and the adults.
Janoose and the Fall Feather Fair:
by J.D. Holiday and Luke Brandon Winski
Something has gone terribly wrong for Janoose. Someone has been stealing two bags of feathers from her delivery truck and that is making her boss Mr. Rooster wonder why and it might mean she will lose her job. Now, anyone that knows Janoose knows she is diligent, careful and always has the right total of bags she is to deliver at all times but somehow things have been going down hill and for some reason she loads ten bags on the truck at Free Range Farm and when it is delivered there are only 8! Why? How?
This is serious and she just might need the advice of someone else to help her solve this problem before the Fall Feather Fair. What is they do not have enough feathers? Who could be stealing her feathers and who wants to discredit poor Janoose? Enlisting the help of the Mallard and Margie as both were perplexed, Margie shook her head and Mallard asked how the Fall Feather Fair’s parade float is coming but Janoose was sad and although they were trying to cheer her up by saying how excited they were about the fair and what they would have it did not change things for her. Austin the Horse, Gertie the Hen and of course Dee Dee Duck would be on the float but what about the feathers?
Janoose is observant and as she looks at the Feather Wear Truck she sees something that is supposed to be a painter but just who is it ? So, taking a picture with her camera and realizing that the factory did not need to be painted she had a photo of the painter? But, just who was it and oh my! It’s the fox who just got out of jail for stealing feathers and is supposed to be in a reform program. But, is he reformed? Deciding to collect more bags she drove back to the farm to get more feathers. There were many barnyard friends working in the barnyard on the float for the parade. However, Poor Janoose was out of feathers and once again stated that she was out 2 bags of feathers. But, Gertie is smart and realized that this is serious as does Austin. Well, fox is out of jail and she thinks the painter looks like him but she could be wrong.
Someone wants her job and someone is hoping to get her fired. Someone as Austin stated is stealing her bags of feathers and wants her job or is it someone that was fired and is trying to take what they lost from poor Janoose? This might take a touch of detective work as Gertie uses her head and tells her that they can mark the bottom of each bag with a J for Janoose and if someone steals her bags she can prove it with this special mark. So, instead of brooding and pouting she and her friends collected more feathers, marked the bottom of all the bags and loaded them on the feather factory’s truck and she drove back to the factory.
However, someone got there first and when Mr. Rooster wanted to know if she all the bags this time she said yes but wait until you see what happens to poor Janoose again. How could two bags be missing this time when they were right there? Why is he disappointed in her and what will be her fate? Will he let her go back for more feathers and she tells her friends what happened that the two bags were gone. But, her friends were out on a nature walk for a science project and maybe just maybe that might have captured the thief in one of their pictures. You won’t believe what they saw and who it was but seeing them getting into their old truck just where do you think they were going? You got it to the feather factory but first they stole some of the wheels from her truck so she could not get there before the them.
Poor Janoose was stunned when she saw Mr. Rooster paying someone else for her feathers and he refused to listen to what she had to say and fired her on the spot. Not listening to her will herfriends come to her aid? Will they show him the proof and the pictures of the thieves? Sometimes people jump to the wrong conclusions as authors J.D. Holiday and Luke Brandon Winski bring to light this story of trust, loyalty, understanding and friendship. Confidence in someone you never had to doubt is something that Mr. Rooster might have to learn. Will he look at the photos that her friends took? Will the Fall Feather Fair be a success? Check out the amazing life like illustrations by author J.D. Holiday making the story come to life for readers of all ages. So, will there be enough pillows for the fair? Will Janoose ever forgive Mr. Rooster and will he realize he was wrong or does she have to get a new job? The only way you are going to find out is to read this outstanding book that teaches so many things: Honesty, being truthful, owning up to your possible mistakes, asking for help when needed and hoping that the end result will be positive. Teachers, parents, discussion groups and peer readers can really enjoy talking about the many issues presented in this FIVE GOLDEN FEATHERS BOOK.
REVIEW by Fran Lewis: MJ magazine
This is a preview of the first page .
Janoose & The Fall Feather Fair is a project I’m still doing sketches for and is a sequel for my children’s book, Janoose The Goose. The Fox returns to Free Range Farm and he has a score to settle with Janoose! How will the fox get his revenge?
This book I co-wrote with my seven year old grandson. It’s in the painting stage.
Grace listened to some horrendous disco station. It’s fairly new and plays a lot BeeGees and other schlock that I totally hate. For some reason, she loves it. It’s a character flaw that I’ve never been able to break her of. I switched the station when I stopped for a light.
“Hey, I like that song!”
“I refuse to listen to Xanadu in my own car,” I protested. “No. You’re not switching it back.” Instead, I cranked up Black Dog and let her suffer for the next few blocks.
“You’re an evil man, Duff Morgan,” she pouted.
“Not evil, babe. I just have taste. Didn’t anyone ever tell you that disco is dead?”
“Only you, every time I listen to it. I think if you gave it a chance, you’d like it.”
“You said that about squid, too,” I replied. “And that Russian style massage and bungee jumping. Did I like any of them?”
She laughed loudly, remembering the failed attempts at broadening my horizons. “No. Complete Bucket List fail,” she said with an exaggerated sigh.
I used to have a snarky reply for every question. When I was a teen, my mother used to ask why I was so “smart-mouthed”. When I was college-aged and in a group of friends I considered to all be equally intelligent, I would let the sarcasm fly. I knew they would “get” it.
Looking back, I don’t know if I was eager for the laughter (even if it was only my own), or if I was guarding my emotions. Can’t get hurt if they think you don’t care, right?
But recently, I’ve noticed that I’m not as off the cuff as I used to be. The sarcasm comes out when I’m irritated or tired; it’s reserved for those special moments when I’ve been pushed too far.
When Dellani first spoke to the Cereal Authors about posting on sarcasm, I thought it would be easy. On the contrary, I’ve found myself at a loss lately. Thinking on it, I tried to trace back to where I had lost my everyday sarcasm. I believe I tempered it when I was raising my son. (There is only so much witty, sardonic banter one can throw at a five year old before it just sounds cruel.)
As my son developed into a teenager, I let it creep back and he seemed to take to it like a duck to water. Now, he’s the smart-mouthed one. (Maybe it’s a teen thing!)
In looking for examples of sarcasm in my writing, I’ve come across the conundrum of: Is this sarcasm or is it irony?
So, I thought I’d try and work that out this month, and in doing so, found that it is not a situation of Sarcasm vs. Irony. It is rather a hand in hand relationship.
Dictionary.com describes Sarcasm as “aformofironyinwhichapparentpraiseconcealsanother,scornfulmeaning…” and “mocking,contemptuous,orironiclanguageintendedtoconveyscornorinsult.”
It is usually delivered through dialogue or tone. Now, a person’s tone is somewhat difficult to convey in a literary piece without actually using a descriptive speech tag like “he said in a mocking tone.” (A bit subtle, don’t ya think?)
Irony has one definition that is just as vaguely symbiotic: “thehumorousormildlysarcasticuseofwordstoimplytheoppositeofwhattheynormallymean.”
However, irony can be more situational and punctuated by the use of sardonic, biting dialogue. And with its second definition: “an incongruitybetweenwhatisexpectedtobeandwhatactuallyis,orasituationorresultshowingsuchincongruity,” and “In Literature: atechniqueofindicating,asthroughcharacterorplotdevelopment,anintentionorattitudeoppositetothatwhichisactuallyorostensiblystated.”
There we go, as clear as day. A big, bright, sunshiny day.
For a crude example of the two, I came up with a situation in the blurry haze of the morning. Say that there are two characters riding an elevator together, and one guy passes gas. The other notices and remarks, “Nice. Thanks. We needed an air-freshener in here.”
Now, if that same gassy character is lying in bed, lets one fly, and then flips over in his covers and essentially Dutch Ovens himself. (That is not only karmic justice, but on the ironic side.)
I warned you it was crude. I’m not sure where I was going with this article, but it sprang out of a contemplation of myself. Like I said, I used to wield sarcasm in almost every social situation when I was young. I used it to not get too close or appear too vulnerable to those around me. One definition of irony rang true to me on this point. “(especiallyincontemporarywriting)amanneroforganizingaworksoastogivefullexpressiontocontradictoryorcomplementaryimpulses,attitudes,etc.,especiallyasameansofindicatingdetachmentfromasubject,theme,oremotion.”
Detachment from an emotion.
Yes, there it is.
That is what drives the sarcastic banter among several of my main characters. Especially those that have the most to lose by admitting their true feelings or having those feelings exposed. Sarcasm is their shield, as it was mine. (And still is on many occasions.) It is an essential element in them, their way of dealing with their world. I cannot picture them without it. And, I don’t think I would want to.
Just a musing for this month, as I approach the Half Century mark in my life, that I thought I would share.