The Val & Kit Mystery Series

Monday, August 12, 2013

How to Know Absolutely Everything, and Then Some: Roz’s Other BFF

Today I splurged on a deep-red lipstick. I say splurged because I bought it at one of those stores that sells only cosmetics and related items instead of the grocery store, where I usually toss makeup into my cart along with bagels and toilet-bowl cleaner. My boyfriend was with me, complaining because they didn’t sell fishing gear or weaponry.

As soon as I got home, I typed the brand Urban Decay and the color F-Bomb into Google and was immediately treated to a video of a pretty, young woman telling me exactly how to apply it. You might think a person would already know how to apply lipstick; it’s fairly self-explanatory. But no, she had a few tricks up her sleeve and even set the timer on her iPhone, promising to return several hours later and let us know how it performed. I’m pleased to report that the F-Bomb is a winner.

I’m not sure who I’m happiest with, Urban Decay or Google. Okay, it’s Google. Earlier this week I severely burned my thumb when removing a cup of queso from my microwave. After thirty minutes of sitting on the couch trying to keep my thumb submerged in a cup of ice water (and guarding said water from cocker spaniel Bailey, who was apparently suddenly very thirsty), I googled burns and discovered that if you don’t have aloe vera on hand (I don’t), then you can coat the affected area with white toothpaste, and presto, the pain will stop instantly. It did. But note, this works only with white toothpaste, not blue, green or gel.

Bailey, yet another friend of Roz’s, first introduced in our blog about Skype

So, in my daily life, Google has become an unpaid consultant living in my home. I seek advice daily on everything from how many children the Duchess of Devonshire had in the late 1700s to when it’s time to change the oil in my car (even though the car itself will let me know, I still need a second opinion from Google).

As a writer, I find Google indispensable. There’s a little stuff I think I know, and then a whole lot of stuff I don’t. In our latest book in The Val & Kit Mystery Series (still in the works and as yet untitled), the ladies are treated to Greek coffee made in a briki, a word that was on the tip of our tongues until Google defined it. In DEATH IN DOOR COUNTY, a character from Croatia emerges, and Google took us on a tour of that country, clearing up any misconceptions about Croatian culture.

How does one make a perfect martini? What are the ingredients for shrimp étoufée? And furthermore, how do you even spell étoufée?  I’m no cook, but since Kit James (one of our protagonists) is somewhat of a gourmet, I’m learning through Google on her behalf. Of course, the pitfall of my googly pal is spending too many hours looking up something that leads to something else. For example: is George Clooney really single again can take you to the Darfur conflict, which in turn can lead you to Africa in general and blood diamonds. And before you know it, you are cruising the Tiffany website.

Then, just when I think I might know all there is to know about everything, Mother Nature kicks in and deletes a good portion of this minutiae from my memory, freeing up a lot of space. But I won’t be undone, and I’m off now to Google Mother Nature herself.

Just who is she?


  1. Great post!

    I am very familiar with has become my best friend while writing. As a matter of fact, we use it for so many things in our house, that when in doubt about one thing or another, even the hubby will say, "Go to the Oracle!"

    I just now figured out why they call the "web" the "web" Once you get on, you can't get off, just like a spider's web!!

    Have a great day, girls! :)

    1. Thanks so much for your comment, Sharon, and for cleverly pointing out why it's called the web!! btw, Patty has noticed that she and her husband aren't quite the know-it-alls they used to be, now that they know they can be proven wrong by the other one going to Google :)

  2. Google is indispensable, isn’t it! (that and two computer monitors so you can write on one screen and google info in the other - smile)

  3. Now THAT'S a great idea!! Why didn't we think of it?? Thanks so much for your comment and your tip :)