The Megaphone Incident and 9 Other Reasons Why I’ll Never Be Governor of Virginia

Patrick Henry, former governor of Virginia, having a good hair day
  1. I do not live in Virginia, though I stayed in a Holiday Inn there once.
  2.  I was never a child who got into much trouble, but when I did get in trouble, it was because I talked too much or too loudly. In my senior year of college, I received an award from the Residence Hall Association for leadership. The very night I won the award I came home to discover that my roommate, a music major, had an electronic megaphone from the college band.  I was full of adrenalin and decided to broadcast out the window of my 7th-floor room.  My future husband was walking back from the library across campus and heard me.  Within minutes, there was a knock on my dorm door, and I was chastised by the resident director. Yes, this was the only time that happened, and it was the same night I had been recognized for leadership by the Residence Hall Association.  Forever known in our family as “The Megaphone Incident.”  Want to know what movie cutting I performed?  Piper Laurie as Carrie’s crazy momma in the original Carrie.
  3. In college, I learned and demonstrated the proper use for a double-album cover, usually Tusk by Fleetwood Mac (1979).
  4. I once left my 18-month-old child in his car seat for two minutes while I picked up the dry cleaning.  Even though I could see him from the store, I’ve always felt terrible about it. Twenty-five years later, the dry cleaners burned down in a massive fire that could be seen for miles.  I believed it was a message from God that under no circumstances should I ever leave the child alone in the car.
  5. On vacation at Cape Canaveral in the 1980s, my husband and I boarded the wrong tram after visiting Launch Pad 39.  We had been assigned to one tram in a caravan of six identical trams.   As soon as we sat down, a man and his imminently-pregnant wife boarded and had no seats.  The driver got on his squawk box and screamed, “Will the persons on the wrong bus disembark?”  We sat there like lumps, not wanting to be singled out while the other passengers encouraged the about-to-be mother in Lamaze breathing.
  6. I don’t like dogs.  Oprah said that people who don’t like dogs are sociopaths.  So, sue me.
  7. Sometimes I wear a tiara for no reason.
  8. I enjoy watching TV and make fun of friends who only watch PBS or lengthy documentaries about blind Argentinian nuns who make lace for impoverished Malaysians’ wedding dresses. Actually, I like documentaries and documentary-light like Ancient Aliens. Other guilty pleasures include The Curse of Oak Island, Friends, MASH, The Andy Griffith Show, and Perry Mason reruns.  If it is popular, however,  I likely don’t watch it . Never saw any of the music shows like The Voice or AGF and I’ve never seen even one episode of Dancing with the Stars (which may be where Gov. Ralph Northam shows up next.)
  9. I stole plastic milk crates to make shelves for a summer apartment in my college years.  This grave crime was long before Ikea.  And the milk crates were likely better quality.
  10. When I was 12, I ate the icing off most of the cake my mother made to take on vacation with us to California.  When my dad came home from work and asked, “Who did this?”  I, the chubby pre-pubescent sugar addict, fingered my nine-year-old brother who weighed about 60 lbs at the time. Under no circumstances would he have eaten more than a bite or two of that cake.  Still a sugar addict, I frequently hide candy from my diabetic husband.  Can there be a person alive who is lower than me?
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