Liar, Liar, Pants Afire!

I personally want to thank “Tasha Turner” for suggesting the subject for this particular post. Actually like a fisherman, she tossed out the line, and I took the bait and ran with it.That’s what writers do. . . . . . .

This is a subject that I constantly deal with all the time. Mostly at work, and in my personal life. What is it?

How do I deal with rumors?

Actually, I classify rumors as nothing more than gossip. At my workplace gossip practically runs the show. We have a very active grapevine which is where we get most of our news from around the city. About 50% of it is pure Bravo Sierra (BS in military jargon), and I’ve learned to not believe anything I hear unless I, 1. Get it from a legit source, and not the office gossip mongers. 2. I’m the Show Me Lady. Unless I see corresponding action, I don’t believe it.

This is especially difficult to do when one has a co-worker who specializes in spreading rumors/gossip.

When I first started working at my particular workplace, I was woefully naive and got sucked right into the gossip, rumors and innuendo mill. Back, then I didn’t know how to keep my stupid trap shut and mind my beeswax.

Well, I learned the hard way from my co-worker CeCe, who was quite literally an agent provocateur. She as also friends another co-worker (hereby named BeBe). BeBe and I became friends. CeCe and BeBe were friends longer, and I guess I was a threat to their friendship? I don’t know. What ever the issue was, CeCe made it her personal objective to destroy our friendship with rumor, gossip, and lies.

Unfortunately, I believed the things CeCe claimed BeBe said and responded with horrible things in kind. I didn’t know it then, but CeCe was the obvious tale carrier, and went running back with what I mindlessly said, and tattled to BeBe.

I didn’t learn the extent of the damage until BeBe literally quit speaking to me. In fact, she refused to speak to me for the next 11 years while we worked in the same office Imagine dealing with that all because of vicious lies! I had no clue back then that the whole thing was viciously orchestrated by CeCe!

Now, that BeBe and I no longer work together in the same office (but the same building), she speaks to me when we see each other. I was so disgusted with myself for being so utterly stupid to allow such an event to happen. I’m amazed that my words were so easily distorted and used to hurt another person.

However, because of that incident, I’m much wiser and much more vigilant. I still work with CeCe and she is still an incurable gossip. She literally enjoys office place drama to the point that if there is none, she will create some. Over the years I’ve watched as she broke up even more friendships, and in one instance, caused some folks to go to blows. All while she sits back, eats popcorn, drinks soda, and watches.

I now have a particular way of dealing with CeCe. I don’t take no guff from her, number one. I’ve found I can’t be sentimental with her because if I am, she will cling to my ear even harder. So, if our conversation is not directly related to work, the job or current events, I don’t want to hear it!

I don’t want to hear who is screwing whom, who is in bed with whom, or what ever else is going on. I was hired to do a job, and that’s what I’m all about in the workplace. Professionalism is key for me. That other stuff is not my business, and I don’t care to hear it.

Sadly, on numerous occasions I’ve had to “stand my ground” by being abrupt with CeCe. Especially when she insists on telling me something juicy. She’s actually became “offended” on several occasions that I don’t want to hear what she has to say! Imagine that? Guess what? I wasn’t hired to listen to your trash, I was hired to WORK! Grow up and get over it!

I do this to protect my mind and my well being. How can I maintain a positive outlook on my job and life if my mind is filled with negativity and garbage? Also when you listen to gossip or rumors about Person A, when you see Person A you start looking at them funny. Listening to gossip destroys people’s integrity. Now you are judging them according to the crap you heard. . . . . .

I don’t want to look at people funny, suspecting something untoward, unless they are wearing a clown suit, something just as outlandish, or if I suspect probable cause (suspect possible criminal activity afoot).

My Pastor once preached a sermon on gossip many years ago. The reason it still stays fresh in my mind is because he compared gossiping to “someone puking on you”! If you listen to and believe said gossip “you are eating the vomit!” Ewwwwww! I know, that’s ubber gross and ultra repulsive! My Pastor warned us that he wanted to make it as repulsive as possible, because that is how repulsive and offensive it is to God.

So how do you combat gossip? The last time I looked this is a free country, and if you don’t want to listen to vituperative comments about another person(s), you don’t have to. If no one is holding a gun to your head and telling you that you must listen, then, yes, you have the right to tell them “to get thee hence. . . .” Believe me, I’m being nice by saying “Get thee hence.”

In conclusion.  According to an old Spanish proverb: “La persona que chismea a ti, también chismosas acerca de usted. ”  Which literally means:  “The person who gossips to you, also gossips about you.”

This further reveals that a gossiper can’t be trusted.

I rest my case. . . . . . . .

Don’t Look Back

“Don’t look back!”  This is the phrase my collage track coach, Mr. Johnson,  always  drilled into us.  

Why did he stress this so often?  Simply because it is human nature to look back.  However, when you were in competition, no matter if it was a sprint, a relay, cross country, or long distance, you didn’t need any distractions.  It is imperative to concentrate on what is ahead of you not what is behind you.  What’s ahead of you?  Winning or finishing the race.  

Newbies to the track team always looked back.   They were running out in front of the pack, and were winning the race.  All of a sudden, while running, they glance over their shoulder at their competitors, and literally trip and  fall flat on their faces on the track.  Not only did this hurt, but they lost valuable time scrambling to regain their footing and momentum thus,  LOST the race!  

Surprisingly there IS a way to keep track of your competitors without turning your head around to look.  Remember that old joke, “I know you are there because I can hear you breathing”?  Everyone is huffing and puffing like an old fashion steam locomotive to get to the same destination as you, sooooooo.

 Also, there are certain vantage points where you can make use of during the race.  In  longer races where the track curves,  you can clearly  see  who’s behind you without turning around.  This also applies to cross country races where there are switchbacks where you run uphill, turn, reverse course, then meet your fellow competitors coming back down the same hill.   

The whole point being, don’t get distracted!   Set your mind on finishing the course which you have set out to do!  If you fall, no matter how many times,  get up, and finish the race!   The most important thing is to accomplish your goal!  Why?  Because no one else is gonna accomplish it for you.    

 

The Magical Age of 50

Would you like to find out why I consider age fifty to be magical?  Please drop by my fellow blogger Jennifer Don’s blog and find out.  It might surprise you!  

Also,  feel free to leave comments either on this blog or on hers.  Thank you!

http://thoughtsgowild.blogspot.co.uk/2012/07/a-mouse-no-im-lion.html

 

 

 

 

Look Ma, No Hands!

I never had a tricycle when I was a kid, but I always wanted to ride a bike.  For those not Old School like me tricycles were small bicycles with three wheels.     One in front and two in the back.  They were given to little kids so they can learn balance and eventually how to ride a bike safely.

I also didn’t get a bike with training wheels or one of those new fangled kiddie bikes (bicycles scaled down to fit small bodies, legs and feet).

Instead, at the ripe old age of twelve years I got a full sized, adult, girlie bike.  I was told if I wanted to learn how to ride a bike, I had to do it on my own.  This was because neither of my parents knew how to.

So the neighbors stepped in and helped me sit on the bike while they held it.  Once I was safely seated, they would give me the shove off.  After falling dozens of times, I got it.  After all, I was sick of falling and scraping my butt up on the asphalt. . . . .   I’ve been riding bikes ever since.

Likewise in high school it was REQUIRED that I take gym class.  I DETESTED gym back then and sought any excuse to get out of it.  When the opportunity was presented to take swimming instead of sweating, huffing and puffing in the gym with hundreds of my fellow classmates, I grabbed it.

I can just hear my late Mom in her West Indian accent ask: “What possessed you to do that?”  I thought I was being slick, I guess.

Swimming was fine for me, after all, I stuck to dinking around in the shallow pool for a couple of months, while my compatriots advance to the deep pool and diving.  My swimming teacher (who was four foot nothing, Hawaiian, and named “Ms. Ho”) got totally sick of me.

One day Ms. Ho baited me over to the deep end of the pool.  Of course I didn’t see she had it all set up, with lifeguards and floatation devises surrounding.  When I least expected it, she shoved me into to water. I was so outraged the only thing on my mind was to get my hands on her and do serious damage to her.  When I surfaced I fully intended to do so.  However Ms. Ho’s words stopped me cold.  “Nanci, you’re swimming!”

Indeed I was.  To this day, I can swim in deep water without problems.  

When I first got my current job, I first went to the Training Academy.  According to the powers that be, I was learning the foundation upon which my job must be built.  They didn’t say I had to build it with my own hands.  

The first week on the job a Sergeant came in and wanted me to do a particular task.  Unfortunately, I had just graduated from the Academy and I never learned how to do that particular task.  As a matter of fact, I didn’t even know what she was asking for.  

Well, she went into an immediate hissy fit and diatribe, threatening to call down fire from heaven to destroy me.  Thoroughly intimidated, I got on the computer (and not really knowing what I was doing), tried to do what she wanted.  Of course, I screwed up shop.

She went jetting out to the front desk and complained to the desk officer (a crusty old Lieutenant) in charge.   Well, he really gave her an earful.

“I heard her tell you she doesn’t know how to do that!  Instead of harassing her, why didn’t you ask me to do it?”  he bellowed.  Ops. . . . . .

Ever since then I’ve been winging it. I’ve been forced to play with programs and figure out how to use them.  Why?  My workplace has a nasty habit of updating  programs overnight.  So, when you come in the next day, it’s a whole new ballgame.  And of course, there is no training, no warning things have changed, and not even an instruction manual.  

Yes, it’s an woefully unprofessional way to run a workplace.  But, in order to perform my job and in an efficient manner, this is what I must do.  

Gifted you say?  Nope, this is a valuable survival technique that everyone needs.  


VBT – Pulling Teeth – The Journey From Trader To Smuggler

I’ve officially forgotten what week of the Blog Tour this is.  However, I’m amazed at the superlative talent of the writers who have graced my blog in the past.  Today I’m honored to introduce another.  And here he is. . . . . . . .

Sometimes a character takes a writer on a voyage of discovery before a story is finished. Join Scott Seldon as he tells us about what it took to bring Ven Zaran to life.

 

 

 

Pulling Teeth – A Journey From Trader to Smuggler

Characters are strange things for writers. Some come to us fully formed and some only become fully realized after we get to know them. I’ve had both, but the more interesting ones are the ones that have taken some work. The main character of my current series, Ven Zaran, has required 3 novels and 3 short stories to arrive at where he is.

Ven Zaran came into being when I wrote my first novel. His great-grandson was the protagonist. That novel, as many first novels are, is flawed and sitting in a digital drawer gathering dust bytes. But something about the backstory I’d created inspired me to delve into Ven further. As I started the first draft of Well of Dreams, Ven was squeaky clean. But my first pass at the story was flawed. As I took a break and revised where things were going, suddenly Ven went from being a straight laced trader to a rugged smuggler.

But the story still had more to tell me about this character. Creating a smuggler was all well and good, but SF is full of those, something I must have subconsciously realized. Ven was more like Han Solo and Mal Reynolds for a couple of chapters before my love of Sherlock Holmes reared its head. But it wasn’t the great sleuth’s powers of deduction that influenced me, it was his flaws. Holmes is a towering intellect and a hopeless addict. Suddenly Ven was an addict. And I rightly say suddenly, because two of the people I let read that draft both commented how his sudden addiction didn’t seem real. I had a problem with no solution.

My problem was that I didn’t know this man yet. Here I had written an entire novel about him and I liked where it had taken him, but not where he had started. As I pondered it, I knew what I wasn’t going to change about the story so I proceeded to write the next installment of his journey. I chose a nice safe story, a grand adventure with pirates. I spent time developing who he was at that moment. It was after writing the second novel that I finally found the fix for the first half of Well of Dreams. He no longer became a smuggler or drug addict, he had always been. But there were deeper things to learn about him.

I felt confident and tackled the next story I had for Ven. It has a tragic beginning and sets Ven on a roller coaster ride of emotions. By the time I was done, I knew much more about this man. I went back and edited all three novels back to back. Still something was lacking. I just had to figure out what. Then I had a fellow writer read it. She wasn’t supposed to read the whole thing,just the first couple of chapters, but she liked it. Just one bad thing, Ven came across as whiny. He may be a drugged out Smuggler through a lot of that novel, but whiny wasn’t my intention. It wasn’t who he was in the other two novels or the short story I’d also written by then.

The one area I hadn’t touched on very much was his past. Oh, I’d talked about his wife, his previous captain, but I hadn’t gone back further. Something told me that the beginning of Well of Dreams demanded something different and to get it I had to go back in time. I went back 22 years to find a young Ven in the process of getting fired by his captain for his drug problem. He didn’t think he had a problem. He was fine. He stumbled on the right captain, a man with a past himself who hired misfits he saw something more in. Now I had Ven on the course and I filled in the pieces. Meeting his future wife, finding something to bury his past, starting a family and buying his first ship. The short trilogy I came up with is shorter than two chapters if the novels, but it is rich in his past and who this man is. Even so, there is much that came to me as I wrote it that isn’t in there.

Now I had him. Ven was complete. I did another editing pass on Well of Dreams and all the pieces finally fell into place. There is more to him than is on the page. He isn’t whiny, he’s a dangerous weapon ready to spring, but he can’t. He is still a smuggler like Solo and Reynolds. He still is a recovering drug addict. But now there is a bit of Tony Soprano in him,

a dark side that makes the events of all three stories make sense. It also led to a subplot of the fourth novel, the one I’m currently working on.

Ven has been on a long journey form the famous trader his great-grandson idolized to a three dimensional person with skills and flaws. Now he is someone worth getting to know. I certainly hope readers will agree when they join me on his journey.

Now that I’ve shared my journey to find Ven, if you are a writer, has one of your characters taken you on a similar journey? If you aren’t a writer, do you have a favorite character where the writer has taken you on a journey of discovery where you learned something important about them that made them even better?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Scott Seldon lives with his family in Colorado and works as an IT administrator. Visit his website (sites.google.com/site/scottrseldon/)  for the latest updates and to find where his books are sold.

Thank you so much Scott for stopping by and sharing this interesting story with us! 

Also, this week Amadi Kyymm is being hosted by Scott Seldon.  You are invited to stop in and read how she invented her characters and their names at:  
https://sites.google.com/site/scottrseldon/news/intothecementmixer

A Day of Infamy

I never thought I’d see the day.  They say  that you can see and encounter anything in New York City.   I’ve certainly seen some stuff that has  made my hair stand on end.  However, I had yet to encounter such a horror as this.

Imagine working closely with a co-worker for several years.  You’ve learned to trust them and hopefully they you.  You’ve got each others back, just in case the ultimate happens.  Then one day they do the unthinkable.  They steal your equipment!  

For months this was the subject of an intense investigation, as a result the person was arrested today.  However, there was no rejoicing, no laughing, no tossing of confetti, and no noisemakers.    Just some very cheesed off co-workers who’d love to get their hands on the offender.   

The workplace used to be safe.  After all, we are The Defenders Of Justice. . . . . . . .

 Now, we are no longer safe, not even from our own. .  . . . . .    

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Unfortunately, I was unable to post this as an active link.  In order to  activate this link, you must cut and paste it directly into your browser address bar,  the old fashioned way.  

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/manhattan-sold-nypd-guns-support-drug-habit-prosecutors-article-1.1114064

 

Tough Love Crime Prevention #2

It seems that every year a new type of crime pops up. Some so new that the criminal justice system has to play catch up and develop new ways to deal with them.

At one time in New York City in the early 2000’s, it was all the rage to buy discount designer pocketbooks on the street. So hoards of Nigerian bag hucksters showed up hawking their bags from large cardboard boxes affixed to hand trucks. Of course they were illegal. When nabbed by the police they were not only charged for selling merchandise illegally, but also “trademark infringement” because the bags were fake Guccis, Coach, Kenneth Cole,  and Diana Karen, etc.

When these (non-English speaking) offenders were arrested, they were taken down to jail and court in groups. There the courts had to provide court-appointed translators who spoke Wohl ( an obscure Nigerian dialect) and lead them step by step through the judicial process.  Yes, this was American (New York City) Taxpayer money hard at work. . . . . . . .

Now the two newest crime waves are as follows:

The cellphone snatch: It’s official, the criminal element watches for people who are easy marks or targets. That means folks who are too busy either texting, or talking on their I-Phone are perfect targets.  When the perpetrators see the victim is distracted they know the victim will never know what hit them!  So, they run up, shove the person to the ground, grab the cellphone and run! Usually, they go for the most expensive I-Phones.

The question I must ask is, why are you so occupied with your cellphone while walking in the street (sometimes at 3am in the morning)? You are supposed to be watching where you are going, your surroundings, and the people around you. It’s common sense because  people are ALWAYS watching you, the way the cat always watches the mouse.  For your own safety, save the texting for when you are inside and off the street.

2nd Crime:

Forcible Touching: According to New York Penal Law Forcible Touching is a form of sexual abuse (ex: groping, unwanted sexual touching through clothing). This law has been on the books and has been used in cases of sexual harassment (in the workplace by male supervisors intimidating female subordinates).   However, there has been a recent and very public upswing. Why? Because it’s Summer Time and women are walking the streets scantily clad. “Half Neekid” as a friend would often say.

Now, as an American woman you may say, “It’s hot, and I have a Constitutional right to wear and walk the streets of New York City (or city of choice)  in my “cool and sexy outfit” without some man accosting me and grabbing a handful.” Yes, you do. However, in this day and age you as a woman don’t know what kind of perverts are out there roaming the streets.

Yes, you can wear that micro mini, but can you handle the consequences if a 6’4”, 250 pound man grabs you in an unmentionable area in public? Unless you are a female version of Johnny Bravo, Qwi Chung Cain (Kung Fu), or Jackie Chan, I doubt it. Most women are NOT capable of fighting off this kind of assailant. So, why take the chance of attracting what I call the “Unknown Exponent?”

You can report these incidents to the police, but, a disgusted and overworked detective once told a victim, “No offense Miss, but, you need to stop dressing like a whore. . . . .” Yeah, I know, that’s a shot between the eyes, but it is very true.

Like my late, Old School British West Indian Mom used to say: “A LADY should always dress the part”.

It is so obvious that both crimes are preventable. It’s just a matter of applying a bit of common sense.

Otherwise, as Voltaire so aptly put it “Common sense is not so common.”  

Officer “Tuff Luv”

What, No Weekends?

RDO  means Regular Days Off, in cop speak.

Thank God for regular days off!  I’ve had a busy and unconventional week.  Actually, I NEVER have a conventional week.   When I started working for the police department I was told there is no such thing as weekends or holidays.  Why?  Because The Police Department operates 24/7/365.  The criminal element doesn’t go on holiday, neither should the Defenders Of Justice.

 So  I officially waved good bye to  EVER having weekends off, unless I was sick and HAD to take one off, or was on vacation.     

RDO also means two consecutive days off.  It can be Monday – Tuesday, Tuesday – Wednesday,  Wednesday – Thursday,  Thursday – Friday,  Friday – Saturday,  Sunday – Monday.   Please note, the regular weekend is not included.   .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .   

Why do I not have weekends off ?  Because weekends (and holidays) are very busy times for both the criminal element and the police alike.  People are off from work, so they go out to eat, to concerts, to party, clubbing,  hang out,  get drunk/high, and (ehem) have casual sex, and  as a result, folks get pick pocketed, robbed,  assaulted, homes get burglarized, and we must not forget stabbings or shootings.

Looking at this you’d probably say:  “It’s safer to stay home.”  NOT!  The highest incidences of Domestic Violence are on weekends and holidays!  For strange reason, during The Super Bowl spouses/significant others seem especially violent.  

It is essential for me to be there because “Crime Begets Paperwork”.  Every time cops get called to a scene of a crime, they have to fill out paperwork.  That paperwork gets turned into the station house and it is my job to enter said paperwork into the computer in a timely fashion.    Especially if there is a big investigation going on.  Everyone wants hard copy.  And everybody wants it right now.  .  .  .  .  .

I usually don’t complain, but recently my crazy and unconventional schedule  has become trying and  draining.  Perhaps because I’m older.  Actually it is definitely because I am older.  When I get home I’m not fit for anything but to crash in bed and lay unconscious for at least five hours.  Then arm up for battle and return to the battlefield.  Yes, I eagerly look forward to the day when I retire.  Alas I will have weekends free to do what I want to do.  

For now, I’m grateful for my job, and what I do, though it be trying. . . . . .

 

VBT – My Special Inspiration

The MasterKoda Facebook group blog tour is at the half-way mark. we are  grateful to have you join us as we discuss the topic: “What was the inspiration for the novel you are writing?”  K.D. Emerson shares a more personal side of her life. Not something you will see very often.

My inspiration comes in so many forms, a thought, a song, a look, a moment.

In this case my work in progress, the young adult Digitus series, comes from my life experiences (and the wisdom/or lack thereof that they created). There were some reoccurring themes that wound themselves throughout my life. At times I became entangled in them until I finally broke free and am now looking at those topics from a victor’s platform. The main themes of my upcoming novel Digitus 233 are captivity versus freedom, mind control versus free choice, and victim versus victory. Although serious writing on this work started this past May I have had the story and outline in my mind for many years.

The book explores what it feels like to be victimized; to be held captive on foreign soil, to have your mind controlled by something other than your own true self. Although these seem like heavy subjects for a young adult novel I feel it is an important story for today’s future leaders as they weigh out important choices in a society that would lead them to believe there is no real hope.

In its simplest form the Digitus Series it is the story of victory over evil.

Digitus 233 is a fast paced, on-the-edge-of-your-seat thriller that keeps the action coming and the people real. The five main characters must learn to trust and rely on each other in order to endure the extreme tests they face, the first of which is survival on an arctic island with nothing but the clothes on their backs.

To experience a scene from Digitus 233 you can go here: http://debrajayneeast.blogspot.com/2012/07/special-guest-kd-emerson-shares-her.html

Thanks to all of you for taking time out of your schedules to visit me. I would love to hear what inspires you to greater living? What person has been an example? What piece of art or music brings you joy and makes you want to get up and dance?

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Author, KD Emerson was born (or is that hatched) several years ago. We won’t go into how long it has been because she has this fantasy that she is still a teenager off to conquer the world. She has a passion for the written word and assisting other writers in becoming the best they can be. She also loves to promote others and cheer them on to victory. Follow her on twitter @MstrKoda or you can find her at www.masterkoda.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/kimmutch.emerson

Thank you so much Kim, for stopping by, opening up, and revealing a very personal side of yourself.  This  helps to give courage who others who need to do the same, and a remind us who already do that we should not stop.

Want to know what inspired Amadi Kyymm’s first book?  Please click the following link to Natalie Star’s Blog and find out!

 http://authornataliestar.blogspot.com/2012/07/oh-that-book-amadi-kyymm.html

 

 


Busy As A Bee

On Thursday July 5th at approximately 1600 hours (4pm civilian time) I deleted my “Radical Scribblings” blog at BLOGGER, thus ridding myself of a major pain in the neck. I hope. . . . . . .

I’m still in the moving process. I’m trying to set things up and changing things around to my liking. I’ve found that WordPress is a bit more complicated than Blogger. But, I’ve used WordPress in the past, so it’s only a matter of getting used to the format again. “It’s like riding a bike or learning to swim, once you learn it, you never forget it. It’s the learning part that gets ya.”

I’ve also found out that there are several features which I had on Blogger that I don’t have here on WordPress. Things like different text styles, colored text, and being able to title one’s link instead of just posting the plain link. The latter may be possible and I just may not know how to do it yet. I also miss being able to an MP3 player on my blog. But, I believe I would have to upgrade to a paid account in order to do that. Something to look into for the future.

There was also the problem of the “bugs”. Meaning, I’d cut and paste a post to my blog and publish.  When I went back to view said post it would look like crap. Mixed matched lettering, and triple spacing between sentences. It was enough to make me scream! However, I remember’s Brad Flemming’s suggestion. Notepad. I downloaded a free version of it from C-Net, paste my copy on Note Pad, then copied from Note Pad and pasted to my blog, and voila! No more “bugs”!

That seems like a lot of little steps to do one thing, post a blog entry. But if you want your blog entries and blog to look “professional” . . . . . . .

The excitement of the move has died down a bit.  So, with the unpacking mostly do, I’m in the midst of checking all of my posts and cleaning  them up one by one.  Admittedly, some of the earlier posts looked “jacked up”, so I can’t just bury them the way my cats do in the litter box. . . .

I guess this is going to be my Summer 2012 project, as well as editing “Knight Riders”. I’m going to be busy as a bee, but I’m loving it. . . .

Remember that question you got at school after summer vacation? Children I want you to write a story on: “What I did during my Summer Vacation.”, the teacher would say.  My answer would be simple. “What Summer Vacation?”  I guess I’d get suspended for that answer. . . . . . . .