Hey Baby! It’s the 4th of July!

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Here’s a extra excerpt from The Salacious Marny Ottwiler a tongue in cheek novel of love, friendship, life and the insanity that ensues!


    I’m living in some Disney reality show where on the 4th of July everyone dresses in red, white and blue and literally joins a parade! I’m not one of you. I was trying to sleep in people!

    At the crack of dawn (or 9:00 am as Mimi called it) I was awoken to a dreadful pounding that at first I thought might just be my head, but then I quickly realized that there was someone trying to break the door down. I leapt out of bed, in an admittedly stumbling kind of way, left the seemingly safe confines of my room, met up with Kevin in the hallway looking similarly confused, and together we proceeded to the door. He being the guy, took the initiative of looking through the peep hole.

“Mimi,” he groaned, turning to go back to his room.

    I debated doing the same, but on the off chance that an intruder had broken into her home, and was threatening her family with a machete, while she had just barely managed to escape, I opened the door so that she could call 911. As soon as I did so, she burst in carrying Camden, nephew number two, and announced the date. Camden attempted to spit a drooled upon blower in my face.

“Seriously, your family hasn’t been attacked by Al Qaida, and you’ve come over at the crack of dawn to tell me what day it is?”

“It’s 9:00 am, and we have the parade. I thought you’d want to come help decorate the wagon,” she beamed.

“Wait, which one of us drinks?” I asked.

“The Parade comes right down our street, I told you this last year.”

“And I care why?”

“Marny, you are not this awful. You can’t be. We want you to walk with us. If you won’t do it for me, you’ll do it for the boys, right?” she asked with that stupid irritating, pleading look of hers that I always end up giving into for reasons I so should have worked out in therapy, but forgot about at the time.

“Mimi, come on,” I whined as Camden leaned towards me, wanting me to take him out of his crazy mother’s arms, which I did because after all, I do have a heart, and I can only imagine what he must put up with on a daily basis.

“Take a quick shower if you must, and you must by the way, and then come join us. If you aren’t across the street in twenty minutes I’ll come over and drag you. Remember, I have a key,” she warned.

    And with that, she took Camden (who didn’t want to go by the way, and reached back for me,) and she left. I went off in search of something stronger than an aspirin, but sadly discovered there was nothing to dull my pain, physical or psychic. Is that right? You can have psychic pain can’t you? Your psyche can hurt, can’t it? I was in all kinds of pain, okay?

    I took the suggested shower, and had a long talking to with myself as I attempted to wash my troubles away. I reminded myself that Mimi is happy, or so I’ve been told, and tried to convince myself that it wouldn’t kill me to be nice to her, and possibly even try to be more like her. Thankfully Kev came in to inform me he’d looked out his window, and discovered the streets were being roamed by zombies with a patriotic flare.

“Towel,” I demanded, extending my hand through the shower curtain.

“Its right here,” he teased, holding it just out of reach.

“Ha ha, hand it over or I’ll make you join the parade with me.”

“You’re joining a parade?”

“Apparently. It seems that’s what the simple folk do,” I said beginning to whistle the tune to Simple Folk from Camelot.

    I played Guinevere in high school, and was mesmerizingly entertaining, or so I was told.

“Whose parade is it?” he asked handing over the towel.

“Mimi’s I guess. How should I know? She says the boys want me to join them, as if any of them can speak.”

“The older one speaks, I’ve heard him. Well, come to think of it he just honked his tricycle at me, but he may have told me to move.”

“Yeah, everything with him is a grunt. I suspect he’s traumatized by his name,” I told him.

“Makes sense,” he nodded.

“So get dressed and come with me.”

“Why not?” he agreed.

    Well, let me tell you why not, because it doesn’t look right, does it? I am Andrew Morris’s wife, and the whole world knows that. Mimi insisted that Kev walk with Jake the whole time, and told them that if anyone asked, they went way back, and were old family friends. Yeah, and I’m the insane one.

    The parade itself was full of trucks and golf carts, each decorated in flags and ribbons, followed by endless streams of perfect nuclear families, us among them of course. After the parade there was a pot luck party at the Emerson’s next door, and Mimi handed me a plate of lemon bars that she informed me I had made from scratch following an old family recipe, while she brought a blueberry pie. Both were bought, and repackaged, from a bakery in Beverly Hills.

    I’m not cut out for an ordinary life, let me tell you. I found it much less stressful hanging out with Malcolm and the old gang last night. Sure I drank more than I should have, but at least I didn’t have to pretend to be someone I’m not. I’m exhausted, and have to take a nap before Mimi forces me to go watch the fireworks from the top of her roof.



About bridgetstraub

Author, Artist & Mom. First novel "Searching for My Wand" was published in December 2011
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