Thursday, 1 October 2015

Renovation? Aggravation! (comedy reprinted from the places that pay me)

I wanted to buy a new front door the other day.  This has become necessary because the old front door is no longer functioning as a door in the usual sense.  'Wind Tunnel' or 'Interstate highway for neighbourhood field mice' might be a better description.

But as always, things have changed in the world of destruction and aggravation aka construction and renovation.  Apparently you can’t buy a door anymore.  They don’t make them, according to the sales clerk (excuse me… 'Customer Service Associate.')  Apparently you now buy an 'Entry System.'

“But I already have an Entry System,”  I explained.  “The mice are entering all the time.  What I want is something to keep them out.  Like a door.”

“Let me show you how this works,” he offered.  He then demonstrated how to insert a key in the lock and turn the doorknob to activate the Entry System.  Not unlike my old door, in fact.  I pointed this out.

“But this is a great improvement,” he argued.  “See?  It’s Pre-hung.”

‘Pre-hung' – for construction illiterates – does not mean you have a hunky construction worker standing by, ready and willing.  Nope.  Pre-hung means that you don’t have to undo three hinges to slip the old door off and install the new door.  Instead, the new door already comes with a frame (and sometimes side windows) attached.  To install, you simply demolish the old door frame and rebuild the entire entranceway to fit the new pre-hung frame.  It requires 3 men and a boy, and at least two weeks of labour and Starbuck's runs.  But you don’t have to touch those pesky hinges, which is a big improvement.

Not surprisingly, Entry Systems cost a lot more than mere doors.  This, I pointed out, was not an improvement.

One more thing bothers me about all this fancy renaming business.  If they insist on calling doors ‘Entry Systems,’ just what are we going to end up calling toilets?  Exit Systems?

Monday, 28 September 2015


I could tell you about it, but that's no fun.
Why not go to this link and check it out?

James put me through the interview gauntlet and we had some fun.  (When does Bad Girl ever NOT have fun with an interviewer?)

Okay, okay.  A preview.... but believe me, the fun is in the Q&A.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

My Short Conversation with God re Ascending into Middle Age - comedy reprinted from the places that pay me

Okay, I admit it.  I’m middle-aged.  Such a nice, bland term for reaching the middle years of your lifespan. 
But it’s a lie. Because that would assume that I am going to live to be over 100...well over 100...

But grant me the illusion.  Middle-aged.  Middle-income.  Middle-expanding….

It’s time I had a talk with the Big Boss.  A very short conversation, as it happened.

Me:  God Sir, I have a complaint.  I’m over 50 now, and while it’s really nice not to have to deal with all that baby-making crap, what the hell is happening to my body? These weren’t the boobs I came in on.  What’s that all about?

Voiceover:  My child, I needed to invent gravity to keep you all on earth and not floating up to heaven before your time.  What starts UP must come down.  So I give you this – gravity isn’t a law in heaven.  You get the originals back when you pass through the pearly gates.

Me:  Oh dear.  You haven’t been paying very close attention to my life lately, have you… So here’s the thing.  Do I get them back if I go the other way?  
Voiceover:  My child, how can you even think of asking such a thing?

Me: It’s all those college science classes.  If gravity pulls things DOWN on earth, does it pull things UP from Hell?  Just so I know my options, you see…

Voiceover:  I’m thinking your options are closing down quickly.

Me:  I’m thinking I’m talking to the wrong Big Guy.

And just because this is an equal opportunity column, I’m suggesting that all you guys out there might want to go to Hell.  Not just because I’ll probably be there.  But if gravity indeed pulls UP…

Tuesday, 22 September 2015


Dear Readers and Friends;

My publisher tells me The Artful Goddaughter is a contender for the Killer Nashville crime book awards. On this list, I also note my favorite author, Andrea Camilleri (never expected to be up against him! And a few friends.)

I am critically shy about asking people to vote. But ask I must, or my publisher will disown me. If you enjoy my work, it would be wonderful if you could vote for The Artful Goddaughter. It's pretty easy to do. No joining anything. Here's the link:

And if you enjoyed this book, 
Coming Jan. 19 2016 - THE GODDAUGHTER CAPER!
Book 4 in the mob caper series, NOW AVAILABLE FOR PREORDER

Thursday, 17 September 2015

A KILLER NECKLACE! coming in the next few weeks....

Talk about fabulous branding!  Check out the cover of A Killer Necklace, the second in the Fashionation with Mystery series, and compare to the first book, A Purse to Die For, below.

A KILLER NECKLACE is the second in the classic Agatha Christie style mystery series, featuring female sleuths Gina and Becki.  Fashion with Mystery..."fast, fun and fabulous!"
Order details coming soon.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

How did I get into this Mess?? Debra Purdy Kong guests on the Bad Girl Blog today, with some inside dope on the Security Biz

Bad Girl is pleased to host Debra Purdy Kong today, an intrepid gal who has gone places where few women have gone before!
I am in awe of her.  She'll tell you in her own words...

by Debra Purdy Kong

I stood before a high chain-link fence in the automotive courtyard while the November downpour seeped through my cargo pants. Frantically, I tried to unlock the gate’s rusty padlock with numb fingers. The instructor was on his way and the gate needed opening fast, but the key wouldn’t turn. As my young supervisor pulled up in the security vehicle to see what was taking so long, the instructor arrived. At this point, only one thought crossed my mind: How the hell did I get into this mess?

The truth is, I answered an ad in the paper. You see, I was looking for different type of work and the security field interested me, especially since they were paying for training. As it happened, I was also writing a novel about a transit security cop and quickly saw the research potential.

Executing my brilliant plan wasn’t that easy. After all, I was fifty-three years old and taking on a fairly physical job. This fact didn't concern the woman who hired me, though. She assured me that the company welcomed mature female applicants with life experience. This was only partly true.

Working in lousy weather with young, male coworkers who didn’t respect a middle-aged mom proved to be challenging. My supervisor never did get out of the comfy vehicle to lend a hand with the padlock that I finally managed to open. Over time, I learned to deal with many awkward situations, but it all provided great material for my protagonist Evan Dunstan who has to deal with murder in DEAD MAN FLOATING. I like Evan. He’s the kind of guy who’ll get out of the car to help the newbies with rusty padlocks.


Propping the kickstand, Evan removed the small flashlight attached to his belt then stepped nearer the water. Oh shit! It was a hand! A freakin’ hand! And legs! He moved the flashlight up the body until he spotted the grey fringe circling a bald head that glowed like a moon. Evan shivered. Was the guy alive? He wouldn’t have to perform CPR, would he? That first-aid course last year didn’t go so well after he broke that manikin.


Author of six mysteries and over fifty short stories, Debra has won numerous awards for her work. She conducts workshops, is an administrative assistant at Simon Fraser University, and also works as a substitute facilitator for the creative writing program with Port Moody Parks & Recreation. More information about Debra’s books and her blog can be found at
Or find her on Twitter @DebraPurdyKong

DEAD MAN FLOATING can be ordered at:

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Up the Tabloids! (reprinted from the places that pay me)

I don’t want to alarm anyone, but I have it on very good authority that we will all soon be eaten by
Aliens. You may not believe it, but they even have pictures. I’ve seen them. In the National Enquirer.

I’ll bet you think this type of reporting is believed only by people with the intelligence of woodworms. But frankly, the supermarket tabloids cover a market that daily city papers are frightfully lax about reporting. After all, it is in one’s interest to keep up with the ongoing sagas of our neurotic top celebs, if only for the relief in confirming that “Hey - I am not all that nuts! SHE is nuts.”

Okay, so I can’t come down too hard on the rags. I’ve actually been published in them. (I’m talking short stories here – things that were supposed to be fiction.) And they paid me a hell of a lot more than The Globe & Mail and Toronto Star ever did.

Besides, tabloids are educational. Mind-boggling scientific facts also get top billing in these papers. I read recently of a woman called Eartha Bog who talks to her plants. Lots of people do that, but she also claimed they talked back.

I’ve thought about this a lot.  I mean, really: who needs a bunch of talking plants nagging you around the house all day? Mine would probably say things like:

Violet: Ugh! When was the last time you dusted?

Ivy: Putting on a little weight, aren’t you dear?

Which brings me to my all-time favorite tabloid story, entitled “My Alien Lover left me for a Younger Woman.” The lady in the checkout line behind me pointed it out.

“Oh My God – even Aliens do it!” she said.

“Yes,” replied the first woman in line, shaking her head. “But do they do it better?”

Postscript: I talked to my editor once regarding the veracity of the people who were quoted in his paper. He told me that those alien stories are not lies. They are fully believed by the people interviewed for the article, who may just happen to live in a specialized hospital environment. I’m not kidding. He told me that.