Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


Capri Super Slims

Filed under: Personal History — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

This is the cigarette ad that made me start smoking.

Capri Super Slims

I SO wanted to be that girl. I had a sweater just like that. I wore big earrings just like that. I even had that haircut. In fact, I STILL have that haircut after twenty years and a multitude of hair fashions. I prefer my hair cut into a bob better than anything else.

I learned very quickly that Capri Super Slims didn’t fly off the shelves quickly enough. I bought a few incredibly stale packs that made my stomach turn with nausea and I switched to Benson and Hedges Deluxe Ultra-Light Menthols. I said that phrase so many times back them to 7-11 clerks that I can still recite it without fail.

I still haven’t found the ad that made me switch to those…

Fortunately, I caught such a bad case of bronchitis that it bordered on pneumonia. As I labored for breath, I realized that when I got older, it would ALWAYS be like that for me if I didn’t stop smoking. Since I couldn’t smoke when I was sick, I never started again.


Hai Karate: The Grandpa of The Axe Effect

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 10:17 am

If you think advertisement has changed over the last forty years, you would be mistaken. Take this ad for Hai Karate cologne.

Hai Karate

Axe Body Spray uses the exact same advertising with the idea that women will attack you if you use it. Just like this Axe Effect commercial:

I prefer this commercial because the guy looks like a Mormon missionary.

Ad via: vintage_ads: Оригинал   712×1024


Elvis and the Fainting Couch

Filed under: Art and Photography — Laura Moncur @ 11:42 am

Elvis and the Fainting Couch

Yesterday, Mike and I finished getting the rest of the furniture out of storage. We have been at the Daybreak house for four months now and it has taken us that long to finally get everything here. The two of us carefully lifted the fainting couch up the sixteen winding stairs to my office. I promptly locked the door to keep out the animals.

I inherited this couch from my grandpa. My grandma had found the couch and lovingly reupholstered it. It desperately needs new springs and reupholstering, but I refuse to undo my grandma’s work. It will have to stay soggy and dusty.

This morning, when I opened the door to my office, both Maggie and Elvis rushed in to smell the funk of forty years. I watched them, waiting to reprimand them the second they put claws to fabric, but they were surprisingly respectful. Elvis curled up in a ball and took a nap.

My home is one step closer to complete.


Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer

Filed under: Fiction — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Frank McDonough Jr.'s Odometer by LauraMoncur from FlickrI wrote a new story for Steampunk Stories called Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer. You can read the first installment here:

It has been a lot of fun writing small and complete stories for Steampunk Stories. A very different experience than writing on Merriton. Both types of writing have their merit, it’s just fun to switch from long form to short form every now and again.


Dreaming of Sugar

Filed under: General,Personal History — Laura Moncur @ 3:15 pm

Dreaming of Sugar by LauraMoncur from FlickrThe other night, I dreamt that Sugar was on my chest, purring. I was petting her and I was so happy to see her. I held her face in my hands and lovingly noticed that funny mark on her cheek.

I knew in the dream that she had been dead for over twenty years and that knowledge woke me up. When I looked around the dark bedroom, there was no cat on my chest and I was alone in the bed.

I closed my eyes and tried to re-enter the dreaming world, but she was gone.


Twitter Log: 2009-11-07

Filed under: Twitter Log — Laura Moncur @ 12:42 am

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Sunrise Over Daybreak

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 8:51 am

Sunrise Over Daybreak

Ring! Ring!


“Hi. Want to go get a massage tomorrow morning?”

“No, I don’t think so.”

27 Minutes Later…

Ring! Ring!

“I changed my mind. I’ll go get a massage with you.”

“Are you sure? You’re not being guilted into going are you?”

“No. Dan said that it would be a reason to get out of bed.”

“That’s true.”


Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer Update

Filed under: Fiction — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Golden Spike Ceremony by LauraMoncur from FlickrToday, the second installment of Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer has posted on Steampunk Stories.

I hope you enjoy this story. It’s different than The Dowager Moncur’s Spectacles and I love how it turned out.


Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer Update

Filed under: Fiction — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Colorado Perambulator by LauraMoncur from FlickrToday, the third installment of Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer has posted on Steampunk Stories.

I hope you enjoy this story. It’s different than The Dowager Moncur’s Spectacles and I love how it turned out.


Are You A Writer?

Filed under: Musings on Being a Writer — Laura Moncur @ 7:51 am

For Progress In Writing“I want this, too.”

Mike and I were in an antique store in Galveston, Texas. The pin read, ” For Progress in Writing.”

“Since I don’t win awards, I’ll just give myself one.”

“Oh, are you a writer?”


“Are you published?”

“Every day on the Internet.”

Her face turned and her husband went on to talk about a local author who was REALLY published. Her books were even translated into German. I held my tongue, knowing that I have more readers in Germany every month than I ever thought possible.

I wonder if Benjamin Franklin had to deal with that attitude.

Franklin apprenticed at a printing press, so he had access to his own publishing method. Just like me, he was able to print up his own thoughts. When Poor Richard’s Almanack was a hit, I wonder if people said, “Well, you printed it up yourself, so it’s not really a book.”

I used to think that making my living writing was validation enough. I do this full-time and survive on it. That should be enough, right? I guess not. Apparently it has to be on paper to count.

But then again, Mike has published nearly 100 books on real, live paper, and that’s still not enough for people. They say, “Those are computer books.” As if all the work Mike put into them wasn’t as valuable as writing yet ANOTHER vampire novel.

I wonder if Issac Asimov had to deal with that attitude.

Asimove wrote over five HUNDRED books, most of them technical. I wonder if people said, “No, how many REAL books have you written?” Did they discount all of his technical writing the same way they do Mike’s?

If someone paid me to drive a bus, then I would be a bus driver. No one would question it. No one’s face would turn when I told them it was a school bus, not a municipal bus. Even if I drove a bus for a charity and didn’t get paid for it, they would still consider me a bus driver. That’s not how it works for writers.

No wonder Emily Dickinson hid away in her home…

Update 05-24-2015

It is nearly six years later and I feel no more like a “real” writer than I did when I wrote this entry. I have published two books and I still feel like a fake writer. I get a minuscule paycheck from Amazon every month PROVING that I’m a “real” writer and I still feel like I’m faking it. My books have sold in countries all over the world, and I don’t feel like I have earned this pin.

It’s never enough.

Best seller’s lists, Pulitzer prizes, huge paychecks, movie rights… I don’t think any of these would be enough to prove to myself that I’m a real writer. And I know why.

It’s because I still have to prove myself. I still have to earn it. Every day, I sit in front of the computer and write. I MUST do it every day to be a writer. A pin doesn’t exempt me. A paycheck from Amazon doesn’t exempt me. A book sold in Japan or Great Britain doesn’t exempt me. In order to be a writer, I need to WRITE every single day.

It doesn’t matter what other people think. It doesn’t matter how that lady’s face in an antique store in Galveston, Texas turned sour. It doesn’t matter how proud my friends and family are of me. The ONLY thing that matters is if I get my body in front of the computer and put words on the screen.

I only earn that pin when I have done some writing today and every day until I die.


Gap Christmas Commercials Suck This Year

Filed under: Christmas — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

This commercial from The Gap for Christmas makes me want to jam knitting needles in my ears.

The choreography is awesome, but the cheerleading chanting is HORRID! Gwen Stefani, Tony Basil and the Black Eyed Peas are going to hunt down the director of this commercial and beat him/her to a bloody pulp.

It really makes me miss the adorable commercials that they did last year, especially this one:

I checked The Gap’s website and last year’s commercials are LONG gone, but you should be able to find them on YouTube: The Gap Merry MixIt.

I found this full sized magazine ad from last year, so I scanned it in at the best resolution my little scanner could take. It was a HUGE file, so I had to reduce it so Flickr would accept it. You can download it here: Rainn Wilson Gap Ad 2008: Full Size.

Rainn Wilson Gap Ad 2008 by The Gap from Flickr

I just loved this photo. I even wrote about it last year.

Too bad they laid such a bad egg this year. I guess I’ll just reminisce about last year instead.

Here’s my second favorite Gap commercial from last Christmas.



Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 4:00 pm

It snowed last night. It wasn’t a huge storm, just enough of the fluffy white stuff to cover the grass. By this afternoon, almost all of it has melted from the sidewalk. The mountains are pale blue in the distance, leaving behind their oranges and reds of the autumn.

November Utah Snow by Laura Moncur

Winter’s finally here and I don’t want to leave the house.

Some people get cabin fever in the winter. When it snows, they feel trapped and want to leave the house just to prove that they can. I’m the opposite. Snow makes me want to hide indoors like a caterpillar in her cocoon. I have plenty of food, entertainment and Internet to keep me busy for months on end.

I feel like cocooning.


Early Morning Bus Ride

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 7:48 am

Early Morning Bus Ride

For the first time in a decade, I’m riding the bus. It costs only fifty cents more than it did ten years ago. I was so surprised when I realized that the bus that goes right past my house could take me to BetaLoft. Instead of fighting traffic, I could read on the bus, or even write a blog entry.

Of course, in exchange for that convenience, I have to worry about missing my bus and stand out in the cold. I have to wonder where I will be allowed to get off. I have to figure out where to catch it to get back home. I guess it’s worth it.

What surprises me the most is how many people from my neighborhood got on the bus. Honestly, UTA has made it so easy for us that it feels crazy NOT to use it.

Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer Update

Filed under: General — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Fig Andrews by LauraMoncur from FlickrToday, the fourth installment of Frank McDonough Jr.’s Odometer has posted on Steampunk Stories.

I hope you enjoy this story. It’s different than The Dowager Moncur’s Spectacles and I love how it turned out.


Twitter Log: 2009-11-30

Filed under: Twitter Log — Laura Moncur @ 12:42 am

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