RT EXCLUSIVE: Excerpts From A Gossip Column

Author Pamela Klaffke worked as a journalist before turning her attention to writing novels. So Klaffke is no stranger to the type of writing that keeps a gossip column juicy. In the author's new novel, the January RT Top Pick!, Every Little Thing,  protagonist Mason has been the object of her very own mother's gossip column. We just had to know what sort of intimate details Mason's mother revealed about her daughter, so we asked Klaffke to share a bit from the humiliating newspaper column.

The late Britt Castleman was Mason McDonald’s mother. At the outset of Every Little Thing, Britt has recently passed away due to complications of vaginal rejuvenation surgery and her daughter, Mason, has been summoned back to her hometown of San Francisco for the funeral. She’s been partially estranged from her mother for years, choosing to live in a tiny Canadian mountain town where no one knows of or reads her mother’s embarrassing newspaper column, many of which have detailed the most private moments of Mason’s life.

April 13, 1975

Everywhere I look I see other pregnant women. I’m two months from my due date and couldn’t be happier. I know exactly what that glow is that everyone talks about. People even stop me in the street to compliment my skin or one of my dresses (which are all pink, as you must know by now!). Pregnancy is the most wonderful, feminine state, and yet all around me I see grumpy, scowling women in terribly, frumpy navy blue tent dresses with a sailor motif.

I can’t just sit back and let this be. It’s time to take action, and I’d ask that you — my faithful readers — join me in my plan to help these unfortunate grumps and frumps feel pretty again. All month long, I ask that each time you see a pregnant woman in a sorry state, you offer to buy her a new lipstick, point out a rack of delicate pink dresses or in the case you can’t afford anything, just give her a big hug and suggest she call up her local Mary Kay representative for an at-home makeover. If we all work together, I have no doubt we can make pregnancy pretty again!

Sept. 26, 1989

As many of my faithful readers know, I’ve been worried about my daughter, Mason, with her teenage moodiness and sulky posture. But most of all, I’ve been concerned about her burgeoning womanhood – or lack thereof. When she turned fourteen a couple of months ago, my worries reached new heights and I took her for her first visit to the gynecologist. The doctor explained that nothing was wrong, per se, and that some girls simply develop later than others (though she has no issues in some areas of her development, as she’s been wearing a bra since she was eleven and I dare say even runs the risk of becoming top-heavy).

But last weekend, all of my fears were at last allayed when she finally began to menstruate! I wasn’t expecting to start weeping when I handed her a box of pads and asked if she needed my help. She said she absolutely did not and locked herself in the bathroom for more than half an hour. Of course she didn’t need my help, I realized, as I wiped the tears from my eyes. Mason is a woman now, the newest member of our sacred female club.

PS: any notes of congratulations may be sent to Mason care of myself here at the paper — I’ll be sure she gets them!

Dec. 4, 2009

Ask my friends, my sexy husband, and you’ll discover that I’m known as a great gifter. But when it comes to my daughter, I’m never sure what to do. Every year, she says she doesn’t want any presents, which cannot possibly be true. After all, who doesn’t love gifts? 

Needless to say, faithful readers, she won’t give me any hints, so I’ve had to take matters into my own hands and do some detective work by examining the purchases she’s made on the “emergency” credit card I’ve given her. (She works in one of those tiny bookstores with no selection and doesn’t make much money, so it’s only fair that I help her out when I can.) 

Going through the last few months of bills, I find that she’s been making charges to a particular website that when I bring it up on the World Wide Web, turns out to one of those junky “vintage” sites where people try to sell their old, yucky things. (Why anyone would buy something used, when they could get something better and cleaner new is beyond me.) I also see that she’s been frequenting an Italian restaurant called La Casa Italiana, which can’t be good for her figure. I’ve always believed that you should buy for others what they would never get for themselves, so I immediately order up a full set of Pilates DVDs and accessories. (But, shhh! That’s just between me and you!)

We hope you enjoyed these RT-exclusive column installments from Pamela Klaffke’s newest novel, Every Little Thing!