If only I had a dime for every time I've been asked that over the last few months, I wouldn't have to do anything.
What does one do after being heart-broken? Kicked to the curb? Dumped? Fired? Laid-off from a 26-year career as a sports writer/crime writer/clerk and toilet-paper-order at The Times-Picayune? A job -- a career -- that I loved.
There are some things I'd like to do:
I'd like to punch a couple of people in the nose:
Some men in ties.
Whoever came up with this cockamamie plan to scrap the metro daily in favor of a web site and gut the news room in the process.
The guy who decided I was unworthy. Or too worthy.
The guy who told me just two years ago that he "fought like hell" for me.
The coach who hangs up when I call him.
The grandmother of the athlete who reamed me out as I interviewed her grandson because, she insisted, I "obviously" like the other team more.
I'd like to smile and laugh and not be bitter or angry at the people who picked my name out of the hat -- or didn't. But that's hard to do when they keep hiring people, younger people, to do the job I did so well and loved so much.
I'd like to get really drunk. And I just might.
And then I'm gonna get up and dust myself off.
I'm gonna tackle some home-improvement projects around my house that have been neglected too long. I'm gonna paint my front door red.
I'm gonna launch the genealogy web site I've been tinkering with. Tell some of our family stories. Find a few more cousins.
I'm gonna be a sports writer again, this time for an upstart web site called riverparishfootball.com. I can cover what I want, write as long as I want and there are no deadlines!
I'm gonna be free for a while. Try my hand at freelancing. There are stories out there. I'm willing to tell them. Someone should want to print them.
I'm gonna write another book. Maybe two. And work on the two children's books I've already written.
I'm gonna see if my late grandpa's little Christmas story and song is worth putting out there.
I'm gonna walk my dog in the mornings. Dance down the street. Get myself back in shape. And house-break this damn puppy.
I'm gonna figure out what I am now that I'm no longer, "Lori Lyons of The Times-Picayune." And what I want to be.
I probably will cry. And get drunk. And say some nasty words. And be hard to live with for a while (sorry, honey).
I will apply for jobs and rewrite my resume and cover letter. And get rejected. Or hear absolutely NOTHING. (Really?)
I will see if my dream from way back of being a teacher is something I really want to do.
I will swim in my pool and nap in my hammock and write in my pretty new blue room upstairs.
I will be a better mom.
I'm gonna have one helluva luau on Sunday.
And, if all that fails, I will move to the beach.