Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A Word Between Strangers

WINNERS, WINNERS!!! Okay, Hubby pulled the names out of the hat.

Brandy is the winner of the ARC.

Second places winners: Emmanuelle, Terry Blain and Simply. You guys win either a copy of one of my earlier releases, or if you have all those, you can wait and receive a copy of DD&Deceived when I get my author copies. Email me at christie (at) christie-craig (dot) com.

Contest...Contest.





Today I will be giving away another ARC of Divorced, Desperate and Deceived--which I was notified is a Top Pick by Romantic Times Magazine and received a very positive Publisher's Weekly Review. So make sure you leave a comment to get an early copy.














A Word Between Strangers


A couple weeks back, I sat in the hospital waiting room while my hubby had some out-patient tests. I was surrounded by a variety of strangers--men and women of all varying ages and walks of life. There were grandfather types, newlyweds, and a lot of “middle of the roaders” like myself. I figured some of them to be lawyers, housewives, IRS employees, maybe even a preacher in the mix.

Some of them were alone, a few had company. Some of them seemed preoccupied—probably worried about a loved one. Several had brought reading material. I spotted a couple of romance novels, a Money Magazine and others’ read the Houston Chronicle.

Of course, the television, three of them, hung in every corner of the room, blaring out cable entertainment for the non-readers, or for those who were resting their eyes. Being the friendly sort, I would nod and offer a bit of conversation to my waiting-room companions. Hey, we were together and sharing a word or two just seemed to be the polite thing to do.

But I have to tell you, the words I’d expected to share with strangers that day were NOT “erectile dysfunction, penis enhancement, male enlargement, sexual endurance, vaginal itch and feminine odor.” And that seemed to be what constantly played on the television—over and over again.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying these ads are a bad thing. I seriously think it’s good that we can talk about these issues. Erectile dysfunction and feminine itch is a part of life and when you’re dealing with it, it’s a big deal. But as I sat in a room of strangers while the television broadcasted the testimony of a man who claimed a pill actually added inches to his sex organ and his significant other accompanied him in the commercial, smiling ear-to-ear with what my daddy would call a chicken shit grin, well, I found myself getting tickled.

That’s right. I couldn’t help but laugh. Quietly, of course. But with me sitting across from the man who looked like a preacher, it made the situation even funnier.

But it got really funny when after the longer-than-normal commercial about a penis enhancer came an advertisement about feminine odor. I tried to hide my chuckle with a cough.

The poor man turned beet red and refused to look at the television, unfortunately he didn’t have anything to read, so he started humming and staring at his hands. A woman, a grandmotherly type, got caught up in my mood and leaned over and whispered, “I remember the day I couldn’t tell people I was pregnant. And now a man goes on television and admits he has size issues.”

We both chuckled and instantly several others across the room also started chuckling. Hey, it was one of those awkward moments that ignoring it didn’t make it go away—we didn’t have the clicker to change channels—so laughing at it just made it feel a little better. Well, most people felt better, I’m not sure the red-faced man got into the humor mode, at least not until after the feminine odor aired and following it came a commercial about the very natural-feeling condoms showing an eager couple wanting to buy out the whole stock. Almost the whole room burst out laughing. Right then even the red-faced gentleman cracked a smile.

Ahh, but the entire situation got me thinking about conversation etiquette. I can’t remember when I was first educated in proper “conversation,” but I remember the rule: no discussions of politics or religion were to be brought up in social situations with people who were not more than casual acquaintances. We didn’t even list no-nos like sex or the size of a man’s Johnson, because it was a no-no just to put it on the list. Sure it might be discussed between girlfriends—girlfriends have forever discussed these no-no topics, but with strangers? I don’t think so.

Well, today, good or bad, at least where television is concerned, there seems to be no conversation etiquette. The sky, or I guess I should say, a man’s Johnson, is the limit. But for me, someone who even writes romances, and I admit, I use lots of sex humor in my books, it will be a while before I lean over to a stranger and just casually discuss feminine itch.

So, what about you guys? What do you think of conversation etiquette? Have you been in a situation that an inappropriate conversation has had you snickering or turning red?

Come on, leave a comment and let’s laugh a little. And remember, everyone who leaves a comment will be entered in the contest to received an ARC of Divoriced, Desperate and Deceived.

Crime Scene Christie

67 comments:

Jenyfer Matthews said...

Those sorts of commercials had me cringing all summer long because there was no way to avoid them and I really really didn't want to explain what was going on to my young children!!

And just imagine being the actor who auditions for that role :)

As for the conversation etiquette, I think there are some things you discuss with your best friends and things you discuss in public / with strangers and never the twain shall meet!

Emmanuelle said...

OMG Christie !! You gave me a very healthy lough this morning with your blog. I've never seen any of those "commercials" but it really looks like I'm missing something (I'll have to check youtube and see if they have it ;-).
As for conversations, hmmm, well I'm more of a listener. I usualy try to agree with the person who dared taking me away from my book, hoping it will shorten the conversation... doesn't always work unfortunatly.
Nobody ever talked to ma about penis enhancement though... something's telling me I'd be captiated... ha !

PLease ocunt me in the contest. I'd looooooove to get an arc for DD&D !!!!

Elle J Rossi said...

That's fantastic! I don't know how you kept it in so long. To be honest, I'm just glad people are having conversations, any conversations. It seems with all the texting and cell phone usage going on, people have truly forgotten how to talk.

But I do know one thing. If you're gonna join in the conversation, no matter the topic, you better have something to bring to the table. It's very uncomfortable to debate something that you know nothing about.

Does that mean I have to research penile implants?

Have a great day,
Elle

Christie Craig said...

Jenyfer,

I don't have small kids, but when mine were little they would have been asking questions about those commercials. I can imagine the questions parents would get today.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Emmanuelle,

I can't believe you don't have these commercials in France. Good luck finding them on Youtube.

Thanks so much for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Elle,

You are right. A lot of people now live with a phone to their ear or in their hands texting.

And hey...researching is always fun. LOL.

CC

Calamity Anne said...

I'm new to your books...but you've won me over hook, line, and sinker! Keep 'em comin'!

Christie Craig said...

Calmity Anne,

Thanks so much for stopping in.

CC

Simply said...

Ah, yes- the infomercials from you know where... When my boys were little they were full of questions about those. I'd simply cringe when I saw one coming for I knew the barrage of questions were upon me soon.
Joys of parenthood and new age TV!!!
Christie----
Looking forward to reading this book too! After my nose stayed in Divorced, Desperate, and Delicious for hours---- I am a new fan of yours, here and @ FB.

Keep 'em coming girl!
Simply me....

laram81 said...

I think that today, anything goes! There is such a huge difference in people today compared to 10-20 years ago. Not only is conversation etiquette NOT sensored, LIFESTYLE etiquette is NOT sensored. We get away with way too much.. crap in this day & time. I'm only 28 (today!!! Happy Birthday to me!) but I can even tell how different we are compared to when I was a child. I honestly dread to see the world my children are gonna grow up in. It's scary!

Book Bird Dog said...

Some topics are best left alone, IMO. Also, would love to win a copy of your book.

harvee44 at yahoo.com

Sandy said...

CC,

I've seen those commercials in the privacy of my home, but never realized just how funny they are. lol Great blog.

Lorne from Toronto said...

Very funny, must have a been a real laugh being there. I too find those ads just hilarious and I always wonder, where do they get those people to act in those commercials. It must be very interesting to be known as that guy in that commercial. Anyways, check out my collection of funny insurance ads. I always find insurance ads very funny because they try and make something that everyone hates (insurance...duh) simple and nice...the result is funny ads. Thanks for your post, great reading,

take care, Lorne

Christie Craig said...

Simply,

Thank you so much.

And yes, I can imagine the questions the kids can ask. LOL.

Thanks for popping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Laram81,

First Happy Birthday girl!!!!!!!!

And yes, I think the world continues to change. Here's hoping it never too bad.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Book Bird Dog,

Yup, some subjects should remain between girlfriends.

Thanks for stopping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Sandy,

It's funny how when you are alone they don't seem to matter, but with strangers it suddenly felt so awkward.

Thanks for visiting.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Lorne,

I wondered the same thing. You know no man is willing to admit "issues."

Maybe they pay really well. LOL.

CC

Edie Ramer said...

That's hilarious. I'm wondering what channel they had on.

I have conversations all the time with strangers. If I'm waiting in a long line, I'll end up talking to the person in front or behind me. So far not about penis size. LOL

Christie Craig said...

Edie,

I have no idea of the channel, but it mostly played political news and sex stuff. I guess sex and politics sells. LOL.

I'm a talker, too. I'll talk to anyone about mostly anything, with exception to the embarrassing topics. A couple of weeks ago, I was at the hair salon and somehow I got everyone talking about how you load the dishwasher. (Do you rinse the dishes first or not?) Everyone in the room got involved and we had a blast.

Thanks for popping in.

CC

Donna Marie Rogers said...

I'm pretty numb to those types of commercials since I see so many of them (I'm a night owl). But when my ten year old daughter is in the room, I have to explain everything...LOL She asks a thousand questions a minute, I swear.

In my mid 20s I worked at a grocery store with a woman (my age) who thought it was funny to fart in front of the teenage boys we worked with. I was horrified...LOL And she'd try to embarrass me because she knew it bothered me. Don't get me wrong, I can talk about pretty much anything with anyone, but let's be a lady, hey? LOL

Please enter me in the drawing, Christie! I already pre-ordered your book, but if I happen to win, I'll give the copy I ordered to my SIL. :-)

Loretta said...

Well, let's see...the last thing that I can recall doing that caused an awkward moment was when I was in Australia. We were having dinner at a restaurant and someone asked me if I was getting settled...I answered with a remark that was full of southernism...(they liked hearing all of our "sayings") so I trotted right out with "Oh Lord I've been workin' my fanny off!"
The silence was deafening, and then one of the Englishmen began to turn red, and his wife finally whooped out a laugh.(She was a Brit but had a heck of a sense of humor:)Her name was Thelma, but I eventually nick-named her Thelma Sue so she could feel like one of us southern gals too:)
Needless to say I wasn't sure what to do with the situation, since I was clueless as to what I'd done.
My hubby John leaned over and in between fits of laughter told me I'd just informed them that I had worked my female genitalia off.
Oh la...can you feature?? It suddenly made the idea of saying I'd worked my ass off very appropriate:)
There! that's my little "tale" (tail) LOL...I'm sure if I thought long enough I could come up with umpteen others!
As usual Christie, great topic!

Christie Craig said...

Donna,

Okay, I'm laughing at the woman. Usually it's a man who would stoop to that level.

Thanks for stopping by, girl.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Loretta,

Too funny girl! Language can get us in trouble. I remember when I was South America and I went to the grocery store and asked the attendant where the pasta was. My Spanish at the time wasn't very good. The attendant started laughing her "Fanny" off. When I told the story later to another Spanish friend, that person was laughing and told me what I had I asked was how I could get on top of Fidel Castro.

Live and learn.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Denise said...

Great post. I hate sitting in those waiting areas and not have anything to do so I always carry a book.

But the commercials - WOW! I rarely watch TV and that situation makes me very glad.

As for the conversation etiquette, I guess it's all in how you were brought up or maybe who you are out with. There are days that I am truly amazed by the things that I hear just standing in the corner of an elevator.

Terry Blain said...

Really hate the TV in the waiting rooms - why can't I have quiet as I've brought a book!!

And as a student of history, I know what you can say about sex changes from one era to another -- for example, the Elizabethians were pretty up front (think Shakespear) but by Victorian times, the words 'legs' was too suggestive.

I've told my grown son, that by the time he's a grandpa, he'll be shocking his grandkids with what he says.

Love your books - and being Scots, hope I win instead of having to buy the book!

Becky LeJeune said...

I want conversation etiquette back, to some extent. I'm 28 and have no kids. I can't tell you how many times I've had to listen to potty training stories -- over lunch! I really don't want to know what color the toddler's poo was while I'm trying to scarf down Wendy's or Taco Hell in record time to get back to answering phones.

Stacy said...

That's awesome. I love a good laugh when it is the alternative to just sitting there feeling all awkward. I do the "that's what she said" saying under my breath a lot when people say something that could be read in a different manner. For example, there is construction going on outside my office building and a coworker and I were watching the machines and she said "I would really like to get on one of those big ones" referring to the machines...I was silently cracking up because she would probably not see the humor in that that I did. That's when you say "that's what she said" LOL

red said...

Conversation etiquette! It really is true that people will tell a stranger or aquaintance things they shouldn't. I was at a baby shower and one of the mom's mentioned to the entire group that the new mom should be prepared to not want anything to do with her husband or sex after having a baby. The new mom was mortified but handled really well. Granted we were all friends, but we weren't all best of friends.

Commercials are a problem in our house. There was one on tv that advertised for his and her lotions. I couldn't get to the tv fast enough. I have a ten year old and he is full of questions. I want him to grow up with knowledge, just not knowledge he isn't ready to deal with.

Terri said...

We've come a long way baby. ;-)

Funny post Christie! At least it made your wait a little more bearable. Hope your hubby is okay.

hugs,

TerriOsburn said...

I'm sure I've had inappropriate conversations, but I agree with what someone else said, I'm more amazed at what I overhear. And I really hate when in a public restroom or some such and people don't have any problem cursing up a storm in front of my daughter. I know she's heard most of it, but still.

The commercial that gets me is the one with the couple in separate tubs. Doesn't that create more obstacles that what the *pill* was supposed to fix? I'm sure he's standing up, but I doubt he's breaking through porcelain. Just sayin'...

Count me in on the ARC!

Carl said...

Really, talk about penis enhancement with a stranger is very uncomfortable.

Christie Craig said...

Denise,

I agree. You can overhear some crazy stuff. Try listening in while you are at a writer's conference, people talk about their books as if they are real, and you hear things like..."Then he buried the body in the backyard and went and slept with his girlfriend."

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Terry,

I've heard that things like sexual behavior/explicitness can change from period to period. So maybe we might get back to the place that these type of commercials won't be quite so out there.

Thanks for stopping in. And I'm married to a Scot and know all about the frugile habits. LOL.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Becky,

I'm laughing because I think where babies and new mom's are concerned about conversation etiquette you might as well hang it up. I blame it on the sleep depravation. LOL.

But I can relate girl!!!

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Stacy...

Too funny girl! Yup, we can all put our foots in our mouths at times, but when someone does it and doesn't even realize their toes are between their teeth it makes it funnier.

Thanks for the chuckle and for dropping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Red,

That poor mom. I'm sure she got over it and hopefully can laugh about it some time. And I know the commercial you are talking about.

I swear my kids could find difficult questions without having these commercials aired, I can imagine what these commercials bring out in the little guys.

Thanks for dropping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Hi Terri,

Yes, it did make the wait more bearable. And hubby hanging in there.

Thanks for stopping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Terri!!!

LOL, girl. I've always thought the same thing about those bath tub commercials. I mean, shouldn't they have a big bath tub?

Thanks for posting.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Carl,

I'm going to take you word for it!!! LOL.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

I think only you could crack up an entire room, Christie. You rock.

No need to enter me. I'm dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at Win a Book for you.

Christie Craig said...

Susan,

Thanks. You guys are great.

CC

Refhater said...

Thankfully at the hospital where I work we show the news on most of our tvs. And if asked, we will provide a remote for the patients to change the channel.

As for conversations, I guess it would really depend on who you were with at the time. Some of my more liberal (Not policitally, just for lack of a better term) friends will talk about just about anything, where as my more conservative (again for lack of a better term) have limits on what they will talk about. I tend to moderate accordingly to the people I'm with at the time.

Can't wait to read the new DD&D book! Have a good one.

Virginia said...

It seems to me about half the commercials on TV are like this. I hate watching commercials anymore. We have DVR and most of the time I record and watch later. I can see where you would be cracking up over these things. I would be too.

As far as converstation etiquette, I can't think of a time that I have run into this type of thing but there is a time and a place for everything and discussing these things in public would not be for me, but I think I would laugh myself. Thanks for the funny post, loved it. You make my day.

Linda Warren said...

Christie,
Hilarious, as always. I usually see those commercials at night, especially the condom one with the firewoks display.

I was in the doctor's office the other day when a young girl, college student I'm guessing, walked in texting. Both thumbs were going like crazy. She signed in while reading a text and then continued texting as she sat down.
One lady asked her how she did that so fast. The girl didn't answered. I asked her if she was using a Blackberry. She didn't respond. Another lady said teenagers were so rude.

The conversation went on--everyone talking about the girl who was oblivious to us. I was called back and when I came out she was still texting. I told her as I was leaving to have a good day. She never knew I was there-she was in her own world.

Ahh, must be nice to shut out the world. Or a little scary.

Linda

Jane said...

Hi Christie,
You always make me laugh. I always hear some weird conversations on the subway. I don't think you should be broadcasting your exciting sex life to everyone on the train.

Christie Craig said...

Rfhater,

I'm like you. I try to keep the shock level down when I'm with someone who would be shocked. But at times, I'll admit I forget myself and say something that my conservative friends find TMI.

Thanks for popping over.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Virginia,

It was funny and I really did try to pretend it wasn't happening for a minute, but then I just lost it.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Hi Linda!

Thanks, I do enjoy giving someone a reason to smile.

I was surprised that the commercials were airing during the day, too. Of course, I seldom watch TV during the day.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Jane,

LOL. You're right, sex discussion should not be broadcasted on the train. Just at restaurants with best friends.

CC

Brandy said...

It used to be those commercials couldn't come on before late night, at least after 9pm. Now? They're on ALL THE TIME and it makes me angry because I have a seven year old and a fourteen year old who I do NOT want thinking about size, fit or the Kay commercial with the two different lotions that together make, well, you get the idea.
I don't talk about my marriage, my political affiliations or how much money my hubs makes. Which is okay because all my Out-laws (nickname for my In-laws) want to talk about is the latest person they knew or even didn't know-who died. There's just no polite way to say "I didn't know them and I DON'T CARE." *sigh*

Fallon said...

I work for a pediatricians office. One day, my co-worker tells me (as there is a mother and child with-in ear shot)that she has a dead hair in between her legs.

Thanks for sharing but next time, please keep it to yourself.

She would constantly discuss what positions she liked during sex and how she would like to try it with her boyfriend and a girlfriend.

I'm not a prude in the least, but some things you just don't need to discuss at work.

Terry S said...

Your blog today kept me laughing all day whenever I thought about it so...thanks.

I'm a listener. I have met people throughout my life that seem to think that because I listen means I want to hear the most incredibly personal details of their life. A few years ago I called an acquaintance (not even close enough to call a friend). My daughter wanted to talk to her daughter. I was the facilitator only. I really did NOT want to hear the 10 minute discourse about that rash in an unmentionable place and all the nasty side effects that took way too long and too many different medicines to heal. That's why I don't call some people more frequently. Those are the people I have learned never to ask the mundane "How are you?" question because I am afraid they will tell me!!

So here I buck the trend. Please don't enter me for the arc. I want to buy the book. It's a present to myself that I'm really anticipating (and you just happen to benefit from it, too0. I want your sales to be high so you'll continue to write!! Anymore, 98% of the books I buy are digital. You, my friend, are one of the few in that last lonely 2% that I still buy paper.

M. said...

Those kinds of commercials used to be things I was able to ignore, water off a duck's back, until my son grew into the tween years. Now they really make me squirm. I'd rather listen to such things with a roomful of strangers than my own children. (Yes, I'm a weenie, why do you ask?)

Christie Craig said...

Brandy,

Thanks so much for stopping in. My lotion, your lotion would be hard to explain to a seven year old.

Thanks for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Fallon,

Yikes. That would be hard to have listen to a coworker's personal info. A friend's info, at the right time, I can tolerate, but not some one I'm not close too.

Thanks so much for dropping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Terry M.

Wow! I'm so honored. You made me smile an sigh girl.

Thank you so much.

CC

Christie Craig said...

M.

I think explaining these things to our kids because of some outside influance can be hard because it doesn't fit the context of "the talk" we think we need to have with them. For example, telling them about the birds and bees is one thing, explaining about lotions that offer more pleasure is somehow different.

Thanks for coming by.

CC

Chelsea B. said...

Oh geese. Those commercials are so awkward! Exsecially when one randomly comes on while watching SpongeBob with your five year old friends son. Yes, that happened. And yes, he asked what it was about. And yes, I lied and said I had no idea LOL. And don't even get me started on those KY commercials....

MoziEsmé said...

Let's just say I blush easily...

janemaritz at yahoo dot com

Suzan Harden said...

Christie, honey, there's stuff even you're liveral friends find TMI. LMAO

Christie Craig said...

Chelsea,

LOL. I can believe it! Thanks so much for stopping by.

CC

Christie Craig said...

MosiEsme,

I think I did my share of blushing that day as well. Thanks so much for stopping in.

CC

Christie Craig said...

Suzan,

But you're my friend so you have to hear my personal crap!!! LOL.

CC

Brandy said...

Oh, wow! Thank you so much! I emailed you.

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