“The ramblings and grumblings of author Ad Hudler”

Nashville defined in words (instead of music)
Thursday, July 28, 2011

My wife and I have tried describing our new home of Nashville to friends who have never been here. Some descriptions we've come up with:

Kind of like Atlanta, only hipper.

Like Atlanta, but with a larger creative-class.

The best of LA, NYC and The South all rolled into one compact, easily navigable city

Nashville: Where everyone who waits on you in restaurants and stores is young and beautiful and talented.

A city where there is NO bad karaoke.

The polar opposite of Memphis

Any others? What are your impressions of Music City? You can tell most of mine are favorable. ;-)

A lesson in epithet writing
Tuesday, July 26, 2011

On the gravestone of Meriwether Lewis, just south of Nashville:

In the language of Mr. Jefferson, his courage was undaunted, his firmness and perseverance yielded to nothing but impossibilities. Rigid disciplinarian yet tender. Father of three. Committed to his charge. Honest, disinterested liberal with a sound understanding and a scrupulous fidelity to truth.

How to Fail in the Bed and Breakfast Business: Case #284RE3
Sunday, July 24, 2011

1. Have a yappy dog greet visitors with a loud, aggressive bark.

2. Hang a AAA sign outside but tell your guests you no longer give AAA discounts ("I guess we should take it down -- right?")

3. Decorate the house with statues of babies and crucifixes, some of them three feet high.

4. Without knowing the political persuasion of your guests, engage them in a rant about Democrats and food stamps and white trash.

My Nomination for Book Club of the Month
Wednesday, July 20, 2011

I talk to a lot of book clubs, both in person and via Skype. It's a great way to connect with readers -- and I'm always fascinated by their insights into my characters. Since the protagonist of two of my novels, Househusband Linc Menner, is autobiographical in nature, oftentimes the feedback I get from book clubs feels like therapy ... like I'm being deconstructed on a shrink's couch.

I recently had the pleasure of visiting two book clubs in Bowling Green, KY. These ladies know how to treat a visiting author! They put me up for free in a Hilton Garden Inn for the night, which meant we could drink and talk long into the evening. They bought me a great bottle of bourbon. They fed me wonderful food. Their questions were insightful and, at times, challenging.

Sometimes book clubs have names. This one was called BIBLE, an acronym for Bitches Intoxicated By Literature, Etc. They meet on Wednesday nights, which is commonly a church night. Hence, the name.

My new friend Kristie picked me up at my hotel in her husband's car. The second I saw it I stopped and thought, "Oh, God. No effing way!"

Indeed, it was a tight fit. It took me awhile to get out of the thing, but I managed ... knowing that a good bottle of bourbon was waiting for me inside.

Thank you, ladies, for a great evening of books, food and discussion.

A Nashville Lesson in Lexicon
Sunday, July 17, 2011

I've long known that the nickname for a woman who has many gay male friends is "fag hag." It's not a nice phrase, especially if you're a younger woman, but because of Americans' love of rhymes and labels it has stuck.

We live in a downtown highrise with a relatively large gay community so, of course, many of our friends are gay. But my wife and her female friends in the building say they don't like the name "fag hag" because it sounds too old and ugly.

"That's simple to fix," said one of the gay friends. "You're not a fag hag -- you're a fruit fly."

Insert smiley face here.

Discrimination in Music City
Monday, July 11, 2011

My friend Steve, whom you all know as my Kansas Correspondent, is married to my wife's childhood friend who came to visit us last weekend. (As girls, the two of them were known to play Barbie Torture Chamber; more on that some other time.)

At any rate, we came upon this sign somewhere in downtown Nashville:

Steve's antics aside, take a look at the bottom "no" designation. No Scottish Terriers. Evidently greyhounds are allowed, as are small fluffy dogs and beagles. I'd never seen a "No Dogs" picture highlight a specific breed. Did the sign's creator hate Scotties? Or love them?

I'm still looking for the "Scotties Only" water fountain.

Tropical Diary: Post #544W1
Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Found in the bottom of my filing cabinet drawer:

And a sideways shot:

I think we can deduce that this poor little guy died of dehydration.