This past Saturday I went to the Festival of Books at UCLA. I spent the bulk of my time in the Children's Book area as that was my plan - wanting mostly to hear David Shannon (picture to your left) read his newest picture book "Pirates Don't Change Diapers" and then have him sign my copy of "No, No David" I actually spent most of the day waiting in lines and weaving among the piles of kids and their parents. At times I felt a bit odd having my book signed for just myself. I stood there quietly while women on either side of me tried their best to keep their impatient children in line while they too waited for the illustrator of "Fancy Nancy", Robin Glasser to sign their book. Finally it was my turn. "It's just for me," I said feeling guilty. She smiled back at me and told me not to worry, there were lots of folks with no kids who wanted their children's books signed. I sighed and saw that she addressed it to "Fancy Amy".
Then needing to get away from the kids I walked over to where Frank McCourt writer of "Angela's Ashes" was interviewing Mitch Albom "Tuesday's with Morrie" writer. I didn't have a ticket. I asked the security guard at the gate if she knew of any extra tickets. She pulled a ticket from her pocket and handed it to me. In I went. I have found through the years that there is NEVER any harm in asking for what you want. AND, I have also discovered that 7 out of 10 times you get what you ask for. WHY DON'T WE ASK? Years ago I went to see Marilyn Manson's (yes, the dark rocker) watercolor exhibit in Hollywood. I came straight from work which was a talent agency at the time and so I was dressed professionally. But all around me were Manson groupies and I have to say they were really scary. Black nails, lips, hair, clothes and here's me in my preppy work outfit. I wondered if they were going to eat me. I waited an hour. Finally after befriending some harmless but scary looking boys behind me I asked them to hold my place. I walked to to the front of the line and told the woman at the door that I just wanted to see the paintings and could I go in? Marilyn was inside signing posters and stuff so that was why the line was so long. She let me in. Granted I looked like I was there for the art, but if I never asked well, I could have been eaten... So the moral of the story is ASK and hearing "No" never killed anyone.