Sunday, November 19, 2006

More Nuggets of Wisdom: Life Lessons 6-10

Please see August 12, 2006 for Life Lessons 1-5.


If you remember when a fashion wasn’t retro, don’t wear it.

What looks fabulously cutting edge on someone who didn’t see the style the first time around merely looks sadly out-of-date on YOU. Don’t try to relive your youth. For gawd’s sake, find something new to do.


A guy who cheats on his wife will cheat on you.

There is absolutely no excuse for a woman over the age of 40 to believe a man’s lies. Don’t cry to your friends when he won’t leave his wife or, after leaving her, up and leaves you. If he says his wife doesn't understand him, laugh in his face. You don't really believe that, do you? At your age? Grow up.


Don’t marry a back-door man.

Pussy hounds are not marriage material. If you want a life of great sex, betrayal and tears, go for it. If you don’t, find for someone nice and learn to appreciate him. He will mow the lawn, take out the garbage, balance the checkbook, and love you even when you look your worst. He deserves a good woman. Give him one – you.


Always buy title insurance.

Title insurance is a policy offered at the time you close on any real estate sale. Even though you had a title search, sometimes a problem arises. For example, a former owner’s ex-husband who was missing dries out, returns, and announces he never signed off on the sale and, thus, has a right to an interest in your property.

In some states, including Florida, title insurance is required. In Florida, it’s customary for the seller to pay for it but not required. In Georgia, title insurance was completely optional was not required. As it turned out, the county appraiser’s office had wrongly recorded a power company easement as 50 feet when it was 100 feet. The only thing a person could do with the land was mow it; planting or building was not allowed. It cut the land I thought I’d purchased in half. I dried the tears of my disappointment with a check from the title insurance company when I discovered the error. My neighbors, who did not have title insurance, were so irritated they sold their home and left the neighborhood.


No one can teach you how to write, but a good writing coach may help you to write better, and a good MFA writing program may help you make contacts that lead to publication.

I found it interesting to see a number of books to help writers generate ideas on the remainder tables at two large chain bookstores I visited today. I confess that I’ve used several of these books to generate fiction writing exercises for myself, especially early in the morning. But, I’m a lousy fiction writer.

As a journalist and essayist, I have more ideas than I’m ever going to need. If you need a book to generate ideas, perhaps writing is not the mode of self-expression that’s right for you. I recommend silly crafts projects as an alternative. (See my hand-crafted bricolage thank-you bookmark card with my Life Lessons post of Aug. 12, 2006.)

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