Monday, November 26, 2007

In Moderation

With the holiday season upon us, I was reminded of a motto that I have a tendency to purposfully forget. Thanksgiving day, my husband and I were at my parents' house for the traditional feast (well, we're from Louisiana, so our traditional feast includes dirty rice and baked beans, but hey, who's complaining), along with my brother, sister-in-law and my niece. My niece, who will be three in January, usually doesn't miss a trick unless distracted, and that's exactly what I did. I distracted her with a giant stuffed cow and baby cow.

She was so busy hugging her new toys that when her mom said "what do we say?" trying to prompt her "thank you," she replied instead with her comeback for when you ask her if she wants a piece of candy - "in moderation." I have to admit, it never ceases to tickle me that a two-year-old has a better grasp of that term than I do (even if it is occasionally misued when enamored with stuffed cows). So it immediately sent me off thinking about how the holidays are not really a time that moderation is the foremost item on people's mind. With all the food, gifts, decorations, etc. one could never call the holiday season moderate.

When we were on our way home, it occurred to me that romance novels don't subscribe to the "in moderation" motto either. In fact, they seem to beg for the exact opposite. The heroine can't just be cute with a good personality - she's got to be beautiful with a flaw like a hangnail. The hero had to be strong, ripped, must actually listen to the heroine AND remember what she says, must love children and cats, and must never, ever get impatient when one doesn't drive a stick shift or know tools the way he does. All the characters must be larger than life and it's even better if the setting is so unique and alive that it becomes a character of its own. And heaven knows the sex is not moderate. The hero must be able to pull off a nickname like "the walking tri-pod." He must know how to perform and enjoy foreplay and must never, ever fall asleep immediately afterward. Longer, faster, harder, more, seem to be what the readers want (especially if my editorial notes are any indication).

And you know what - I think it's great! Romance books are SUPPOSED to be the fantasy. Romance books are SUPPOSED to be the escape - the place where every woman gets to live her dream through the actions of a character she's bonded with. Who wants to pay $6.99 to read about a sink full of dishes, a cat with a hairball problem, and a man who leaves his dirty underwear on the floor and won't take out the trash? Not me!

So bring on the gluttony of romance. Moderation is over-rated anyway.

Deadly DeLeon

22 comments:

Christie Craig said...

Jana,

Great post girl.

Hmmm...still smiling at the "walking tripod" comment.

CC

Wendy said...

"the walking tri-pod" = Hilarious! and I agree! Moderation can be over-rated.

Jana DeLeon said...

Hi Christie - great visual, huh? :)

Jana DeLeon said...

Wendy - I think it's great to teach my niece things like that now, but let's face it, when she gets a career (and god forbid, she wants to be a writer like Aunt Jana) then moderation goes straight out the window. Most authors I know have their vice - chips, chocolate, alcohol, cigarettes...it's just one of those jobs that seems to call for picking at something with your fingers in between typing.

Wendy said...

Jana, it's not only writers, I think that practically everyone has their vice, yanno? And yeah I know what you mean about writers, I'm not one but when I used to have to write those long essays for school, I always had something to eat close by and the whole sittign around didn't help, lol.

Jana DeLeon said...

Ahhh, Wendy, you're talking about what we refer to as "writer's butt." It's an unfortunate side effect of the job for most of us. :)

Tori Lennox said...

Moderation IS overrated! Great post! :)

RachaelfromNJ said...

She sounds like an adorable girl! How cute! I wish I understood ''in moderation.'' I think I OVER DID the eating during Thanksgiving and the days after. LOL Eventually when I get some energy I will jump on my treadmill.

Jana DeLeon said...

Hi Tori! :)

Jana DeLeon said...

Ugh, Rachael, not the treadmill! In my defense, though, I have an absolutely horrible head cold right now, so the thought of exercising makes me think of not breathing.

Estella said...

Up with gluttony, down with modersation! At least, where romance is concerned.

Jenyfer Matthews said...

Who needs reality in romance? I get enough of that at home!!! LOL

Moderation is totally overrated!

Jana DeLeon said...

LOL, estella - I'm with you!

Jana DeLeon said...

Yes, Jenyfer, exactly my point! :)

Lucy said...

What is the saying...moderation in all things - including moderation?

Anyway, good post. Your niece sounds adorable. Sounds like you had a good holiday. :-)

Jackie W said...

My sister Joye sent me to blog here. Glad she did I enjoyed reading the different blogs.

Dru said...

great post. "walking tri-pod" -- love it!

Jana DeLeon said...

Hi Lucy - I did have a good holiday. If only it were longer. :)

Jana DeLeon said...

Welcome, Jackie - Please stop by every day. We love new faces!

Jana DeLeon said...

Thanks, dru!

catslady said...

Great post - I totally agree. I'll read the newspaper if I want reality.

Jana DeLeon said...

catslady - people are always giving me grief because I never watch/read the news. I rarely even check the weather which means that when we have a typical Texas winter (80 degrees one day, 35 degrees the next), I am rarely dressed appropriately because I never know it's coming. :)