I didn't realize it was Friday the 13th until I was running errands and heard it mentioned on the radio. I'm not superstitious and the day was going according to plan. In that not much was planned besides washing my floors of the tell tale post snow mud prints and grime that filled the house. I was thinking of calling a friend for a spontaneous lunch date. It's a good thing I didn't.
When I got home and checked my e-mail, two things were waiting for me that I wasn't expecting. The interior of the book. And the exterior of the book. For a moment I was paralyzed, not knowing what to do next. I knew I needed a copyright. So I started there.
I didn't get very far with the copyright website, when absolutely nothing happened. So I started messaging Leah, my mentor, who's been through all of this before with the details of my snafu. "Contact them", was the answer. But, I didn't see contact information. Of course, I couldn't see it because I didn't have my reading glasses on. Until Leah directed my attention to the minuscule 'contact us' button at the bottom of the page.
Not to be deterred from getting something accomplished, I went to submit the book to the press for printing. Of course it's not that easy. It never is. There's so many things to decide. The size of the book, paper type, matte or glossy, just to name a few. Then there's all the information that needs to be input. The ISBN number, the publication date, the sale date and I don't even remember what else. Probably because I didn't have my glasses on. And because I had about 10 tabs open, switching between e-mail, messaging Leah, the press, the copyright place, an alternative copyright place, copyright laws, the interior, the exterior, facebook and Twitter. That's when I finished and placed my very first order for Rock the Kasbah, the printed book. I was completely elated. At least for a minute or two.
Until I switched tabs to Twitter and I heard about the tragedy.
The shooting just outside of Denver at Arapahoe High School. I have two good friends who moved from Colorado Springs to Denver this past summer. My friend Suzanne's oldest is in middle school. My friend Mary's oldest is in high school. But, I wasn't sure which one. Until I got ahold of her. And she confirmed the worst. Arapahoe. She was trying desperately to reach her daughter on her cell. I can't even imagine the thoughts that went on in her head. And yet, I can.
OH GOD, MY BABY! NOT MY BABY!
WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH THE WORLD?
After a couple of hours, a virtual eternity, I finally heard back from Mary. Her daughter was ok and she'd be able to pick her up at a nearby church. It wasn't until 5 that night, after working her way through all the camera crews that they were finally reunited. And even though she was elated to see her daughter uninjured, having survived by cowering in the corner of a classroom listening to the gunshots just two classrooms away, she sat alone in the corner of the church, friendless, 'the new girl' while everyone else comforted each other. Devastated.
That this could happen. And continues to happen over and over again.
Elation and devastation.