I Have Brilliant Ideas

The files in your head, you take them to bed
You’re never ever through


Would it surprise you to learn that brilliant blog posts don’t pop into my fertile brain, fully formed and ready to publish? Yes? Well, guess what? I’m just like you. I have tons of ideas sitting in my drafts folder. All, obviously, are brilliant. I just haven’t had the time to develop them. Maybe I never will. Oh, don’t say that! Of course I will. They just need to simmer a bit longer. Maybe you can help me turn some of these brilliant ideas into actual posts.

Some of my drafts have only keywords for titles and a few sentences:

Nut Box

So now there’s this thing where we’re supposed to carry our nuts in a box.

No, this is nothing like Dick in a Box.

The people at Real Simple magazine, in an effort to keep things Real and Simple, have decided that the best way for us to make sure we eat our nuts is to have a special box to carry them around in. (Note: This would’ve been brilliant if I had found the link to prove I wasn’t making it up).


Tonight I will be that mean old lady who doesn’t turn on her porch light and refuses to answer the door. I may even put up a sign: “No Candy Here—Not Even the Crappy Kind.”

Giving Up Potato Chips

Oh, crabapples! This is harder than I expected. I’m one day in, and I want my salty fix.


Very lucky in the in-laws department.

But there is one area over which my MIL and I clash and will always clash: the cold tomato

Rock Star Bulges

Recently, I told Dave about Adam Lambert’s performance on American Idol‘s “Rock and Roll” theme night. While there was, sadly, no Zepplinesque gong-on-fire ending during Adam’s awesome rendition of “Whole Lotta Love,” there was a whole lotta crotch. Now, suddenly, Adam’s crotch is upon us, so it’s time to talk about it.

Chicken in a Can

Damn. I should have struck while the iron was hot, but after just a few weeks, everyone was blogging about this.

The Day After Christmas

Hmmm. This had potential. But what rhymes with “curlers”?

‘Twas the day after Christmas, and all through the house
Not a cat toy was played with, not even Pink Mouse!

The presents were hidden in closets and drawers
In hopes that wee Prudence wouldn’t scratch them with clawrs

The cat beds were laid on the foot of the bed
In hopes that the cats would there rest their head(s)

And visions of iTunes . . . JD’s head (?)

And Dave in his bathrobe and I in my curlers

Some drafts actually progressed to the point of earning a title

I Went to the Ballet

This idea was based on a sole quote from Dave: “Where will you be dining? You at least have to have a scone. Every ballet has to have a scone stand.” Sadly, that’s all I had.

I’m Going Cold Turkey

You read that right. Cold turkey. I’m going.

I Hate Things

Milk flakes. Oh, don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about. Milk flakes gather at the rim of the milk jug and sprinkle into your coffee when you pour. You can’t get them out either. (I find it hard to believe I couldn’t come up with more things I hate.)

I Have Mad Cow Disease

encounter with stranger at Barnes & Noble (ummm . . . ?)

And some never progressed beyond the title
  • Old People Are Ruining My Life
  • I Like to Move It, Move It
  • I Eat Healthy (what the hell?)
  • I’m a

Yes, I actually felt the need to save an empty file with the title “I’m a.”

So? Which of these tender young seedlings deserves to grow into a beautiful, brilliant, blooming I Do Things tree of brilliance?

What are some of your brilliant draft ideas?

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41 Responses to “I Have Brilliant Ideas”

  1. 1 jennyonthespot

    I just like the fact that in the first sentence you used the word “fertile” – heh. I don’t know why, but that word makes me giggle like a pre-teen. I read your whole post and can get past “fertile”…. {gigglegigglegiggle}

    jennyonthespot’s last blog post..The Confessional: Tired and Overwhelmed

  2. 2 absepa

    Personally, I would kind of like to hear more about your MIL and the cold tomato thing, or your trip to the ballet.

    I have tons of half-formed blog ideas, but I don’t usually write any of them down. I also tried to write a version of “Twas the Night Before Christmas” about my dogs last year, but gave up after a couple of stanzas. My biggest problem is that I worry too much about whether or not people are going to want to read a particular post, instead of just getting over myself and writing it.

    absepa’s last blog post..And now…the long-awaited product review!

  3. 3 Jaffer

    You have a “Drafts” folder ?

    Well, I write a post if it pops in my head – I could work on it for an hour or a week then if it’s good I post or else I scrap it.

    Right now (well, this summer) I am just thinking of ways of improving the back-office of my website and bring in a few changes.

    You do have brilliant Ideas.

  4. 4 Grace

    Of all those fascinating subjects I fixated on the the nut box. I spent some time searching that web site and couldn’t find the reference.

    I applaud your professionalism – I post just about every day and it’s always on the fly…Probably why your posts a better written than mine LOL

    Grace’s last blog post..Not a good day – Is it Friday the 13th rather than the 3rd?

  5. 5 Stephanie Barr

    I think all of these are worth pursuing except the chicken in a can and “I’m a”.

    Holy God, I could curl your hair if I told you all of my undeveloped writing ideas (I have links saved up for blog inspiration, but don’t save any half-formed ideas). All novels and/or short stories I never followed up or completed. Some have ten chapters. Some are so asinine (childhood) I’d be embarrassed to mention them.

    Stephanie Barr’s last blog post..Animé Break

  6. 6 Puglette

    hi jd, well they all have their merits, to be sure. my interest has been piqued by the tomato issue with mil, which side are you on? i used to put mine in the fridge, but now i keep them in the fruit bowl.

    i hate milk flakes too…i blow them off into the sink. or if they are stubborn, i use a damp paper towel. but there is no way they are getting into my glass of milk!

    scones at a ballet? never heard of such a thing. scones are a big deal here at the western WA state fair. hot out of the oven and slathered with butter and raspberry jam.

    omg! chicken in a can, that’s disgusting!! especially the photos of it coming out of the can, it’s like the birthing of a partially cooked chicken, complete with all the goo. i cannot think of any reason why you would need to use that product. just buy a fresh chicken and cook it instead. just as easy and way more tasty!

    so now we come to my favorite choice for a blog post…rock star bulges. sigh… i think books could be written on the subject. having spent my formative years staring up at some of the best, i have strong opinions on this subject and would love to hear yours. my top three favorites (in no particular order) are robert plant, bruce springsteen and roger daltrey. of course, you could always do a post about the flip side…rock star asses. sigh… same favorite top three.

    ok, gotta go google me some bulges…
    happy independence day!

    Puglette’s last blog post..Snug

  7. 7 Daisy the Curly Cat

    And Dave in his bathrobe and I in my curlers…
    I got a baton for Christmas, even though I hate twirlers.

    No good? Okay how about:
    And Dave in his bathrobe and I in my curlers….
    We got the cats dried liver treats because they’re not hurlers.

    Never mind.

    Daisy the Curly Cat’s last blog post..Photo Hunters: Pink

  8. 8 Regan

    I’m so glad you have brilliant ideas so I don’t have to. You should just think for everybody, because your ideas are brilliant enough for all of us.

    For the Halloween one, I don’t think that’s very safe. Your house could be egged. Because they might see you’re actually home and not giving away any candy.

    For the ‘I’m a’, you should make it into a contest. Whoever comes up with the funniest idea for what it could’ve been… actually gets to write about it for your blog! It could be the I’m a…. so you don’t have to contest.

    :) I love contests.

    And I laughed very hard about the ‘Old People Are Ruining My Life’. I’d like to see that be a blog post.

  9. 9 Mason

    The milk flakes have always been on my list! Clean and clean and they always come back!

    Mason’s last blog post..Mason’s 4th of July plan for you!

  10. 10 flit

    I don’t know…I kinda think “I’m a…” has lots of potential.

    I’ve been trying to brainstorm story ideas today – I have to do a reading later this month and I want something new (and funny) to read this year… but so far I’m drawing a blank

    flit’s last blog post..Making Progress

  11. 11 Lola

    You have me scratching my head at the Nut Box thing. I have no idea what you’re talking about.

    Halloween – why not just go out during trick or treat? Tell Dave to take you out to dinner. I don’t have to worry about that here, it seems because we don’t have streetlights on our block no children will brave it. The first Halloween here I bought a ton of candy expecting a lot (we always had tons of kids in Chicago) and I didn’t even have 1 taker.

    Potato Chips – It says on the bag you can’t just eat one.

    MIL/Tomato – Not sure which side you’re on, but I always heard refrigerating tomatoes is a sin, but I do it all the time.

    Rock Star Bulges – I missed that thankfully. But I still can’t get the image of a poster of Elton John I got in some magazine. I still want to wash my eyes out. Elton went commando in tights. His flashy eyewear just wasn’t flashy enough to get past his rock star parts. Yeah, I’m going back to wash my eyes out again.

    Thanks for voting for me!

    Lola’s last blog post..TGIF VGNO! – And…Go Vote For Me!

  12. 12 JD

    jennyonthespot: Hee! fertilefertilefertile!

    absepa: I think the MIL/tomato story will make it. The ballet . . . I tried, but it was just a ballet. I worry too, but then in anger and desperation, I just slap a post up.

    Jaffer!!! Heh. Yes, I have 78 draft posts itching to be written. Your method sounds pretty solid. I have to admit: most of my ideas came earlier in my blogging career when EVERYthing was a potential post. Now? Not so much.

    Grace: Argh! The nut box. I READ about it in their magazine, and I kept the magazine but could NOT find the nut box story. I admire anyone who posts every day. Believe me, the extra time between posts does not reflect time spent writing but rather laziness.

    Stephanie Barr: Wow, ten chapters? You’re halfway there! I have a “Writing” folder, too, with some half-formed (and half-baked) ideas. Some of those are pretty embarrassing.

    Puglette: I’ll say only this: I am DEFINITELY against the cold tomato. Your description of the birth of the chicken in a can cracked me up! Yeah, I don’t know why anyone would buy and/or eat such a thing, unless as a joke. The rockstar bulges post WILL be written, and I highly approve of your top 3.

    Daisy the Curly Cat: Oh, Daisy! Is there anything you can’t do? Those stanzas are brilliant! I’d feel funny posting them, tho, because I really do like twirlers AND at least one of my cats is indeed a hurler. But I appreciate your chiming in and helping me out!

    Regan: I thought about the egging, but it rarely happens in our neighborhood. Believe me, I’m not the only crabby old lady on the block! Aaaand: great idea about the contest! It’s one way to get rid of that annoying “I’m a” draft post. As for the old people one, I need to find a way to make the title into a proper “I Do Things” format. Then I’m ready!

    Mason: I know! What is with that? Why do they form? And no matter how careful you are, they ALWAYS get into the coffee and immediately sink to the bottom. Grrr.

    flit: “I’m a” definitely has all the potential in the world! It’s hard for me to come up with ideas on demand. That’s why I write everything down, even half a sentence. Trying to start with nothing does not work for me.

    Lola: I know. If I’d had source material and maybe even a picture, I’d have written a whole post. The magazine was really urging people to carry around nuts in cute little boxes so we wouldn’t forget to eat our nuts . . . ? See above re: cold tomato. Ohhhh. I think I’ve seen that picture of Elton John. And I used to have a huge crush on him, but that was a little bit traumatic. Brrrr.

  13. 13 Kathy

    Thank you for not writing about Chicken in a Can. I saw it once. That was enough. I mean, seriously. It looks like the can gave birth. The slime it’s covered in… what. is. it???

    Nuts in a box is the next stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of. Really? Do they have to be in a box? Not a can? Not a tin? What gives? Those Real Simple people have clearly run out of article ideas.

    Add me to the people who want you to write about the cold tomato. I’m guessing you do not like them on a train or on a plane, or on a boat or with a goat.

    Kathy’s last blog post..Stuff My Husband Doesn’t Know About When I Mow the Lawn

  14. 14 Barb - WillThink4Wine

    JD has Drafts so we don’t have to! Brilliant!

    According to Encyclopedia.com, words that rhyme with curler: curler, pearler, purler, twirler, whirler •curdler • burglar • Koestler. Yeah, I don’t know what’s up with that last one. And yes, they actually had curler first.

    And Oxford has a Rhyming Dictionary

    Barb – WillThink4Wine’s last blog post..fun, fun, fun, but no photos

  15. 15 babs - beetle

    Milk flakes! What are they putting in our milk now days? REAL FRESH milk doesn’t flake. It curdles, and we can make soft cheese with it. Well we could back in the days before they started messing with our food. Now there’s a post ;)

    I have lots of ideas, but never write them down. When I go to write them, I no longer think they are worth posting. I have to be instant, or I lose confidence in them, and they end up in my ‘nobodywillbeinterestedinreadingthis’ bin.

    babs – beetle’s last blog post..No smoking!?!?

  16. 16 trade show displays guru

    Hey JD,
    Sorry, I can’t help with the creative process, but I look forward to reading each and every one of these posts… especially “Rock Star Bulges”.
    Actually, that reminds me, we saw a total awesome slightly over-the-hill band doing a very energetic set of disco’s 70s songs the other night (our local weekly summer concerts in the park series). The main singer was amazing and was wearing a cool bright pink coat. Unfortunately, about half way through he took it off. He had on tight black leather pants and a tight black tank top. He didn’t have the kind of bulge you were thinking about. His was above the belt. Think too many Red Stripes…
    All in all though, the show was very entertaining.
    ~ Steve, the keep-your-bulge-to-yourself trade show displays guru

    trade show displays guru’s last blog post..Does Blogging Regularity Matter?

  17. 17 Pricilla

    I just watch the goats and pray they do something blogable. And they do….

    Goats are good fodder in more ways than one.

    I do sometimes have a few ideas backed up in my rumen but maybe that’s just goat gas I don’t know.

    I am almost always nude except for when the publicist makes me wear pearls.

    Pricilla’s last blog post..Harry and the Hay Pile

  18. 18 nannygirl

    Definitely the tomato one and the old people one…

  19. 19 Will

    You know JD, I would not even want to try to compete with your thought process. It is a proven fact that only .0000001 percent of the population thinks like you. That means you are stuck being your brilliant self and we are stuck watching our email or rss subscriptions for your latest gem!

    Will’s last blog post..Sunday Search of the Week 7-05-2009

  20. 20 Anne

    These are very entertaining. I have found that many of my drafts turn out to be much less entertaining than I originally thought they would be.

    Anne’s last blog post..Happy 4th of July!

  21. 21 dcr

    I have a saved draft titled “The Value of Sleep.” That’s it. Nothing in the body. No notes, no hints. Nothing. Just the title. I’m sure it was going to be a great post though!

    Rhymes for curlers? Here you go: birlers, burglars, furlers, girlers (slang), hurlers, pearlers, purlers, twirlers and whirlers.

    dcr’s last blog post..Going Out with a, um, Quote

  22. 22 Jeff

    Oh you’re funny (as usual). I sometimes take my half-baked draft ideas and combine them into a single post (see my “It’s a bit drafty in here” series). But you’ve gone ahead and taken it one step to the side and written a post about your draft ideas. You really know how to bend the envelope JD.

    Jeff’s last blog post..Mr. Know-It-All

  23. 23 Ilana

    Milk flakes. GROSS. I feel ya.

    “I like to move it, move it” definitely sounds like the kind of post I want to read more (a lot) more of. Question: Will there be video accompaniment?

    It totally sucks when strangers at Barnes & Noble give you Mad Cow…wait, what? Explanation, please.

    My blog line-up is also full of half-written posts and awesome titles with no stories. I am extremely impressed that you managed to turn this lack of follow-through into a post in itself. Smooth moves.

    Ilana’s last blog post..Women’s Issues

  24. 24 Lola

    Thank you for voting for me in the First Official Dork-Off at Lin’s Duck and Wheel With String.


    The votes are in and the winner has been announced. Thanks so much for your vote. Be sure to come back and check out Lin’s blog and my blogs.

    Thanks again!

    Lola’s last blog post..TGIF VGNO! – And…Go Vote For Me!

  25. 25 Web Design Company Eastbourne

    I love the name of your blog :) What a brilliant idea, when I saw it and I read it my first thought was “what is he doing??” and I clicked on your blog instantly to check it out. Very Smart.

    I love the Halloween idea :D “not even the crappy kind” haha :D

    Web Design Company Eastbourne’s last blog post..Welcome

  26. 26 Jay

    Currently I have 26 drafts in my folder, but you think I’m going to tell you what they are? ROFL!! Actually, most are actually pretty boring, which is why they’re still there. Then there are several in answer to awards, which I’m saving to do all together, when I have my ‘awards’ page up and running. But there is one called ‘Addicted, ya think?’ and one called ‘Confessions’ …

    Without opening them to look, I can’t actually tell you what either of them are about, which is almost funnier than the fact that they’re in there in the first place! LOL!

  27. 27 JD

    Kathy: You are sooo right about the cold tomato. And clearly this needs to be written about. People need to know where I stand. That Chicken in a Can slime? I don’t know. But it does indeed look like afterbirth.

    Barb – WillThink4Wine: Well, you can’t argue with that. “Curler” certainly does rhyme with “curler.” Maybe I should just go with that. Tho I’m curious to see if I can work in “Koestler.”

    babs – beetle: The milk dries around the mouth of the jug, creating gross flakes. It’s an American thing, I s’pose (do you drink your British milk out of a box?) Anyway, I don’t know what’s worse: flakes or curdles! I should probably lose confidence in some of my “brilliant” draft ideas.

    trade show displays guru: The Rock Star Bulges post will definitely see the light of day. I’m sorry you had to see that aging rock star in his tight leather glory. He should’ve kept on the coat.

    Pricilla: You’re very lucky. With adorable goatlets like Harry jumping around, you almost always have something to write about. Hmmm. Nude except for pearls, eh? I wonder . . .

    nannygirl: I gotta figure out how to get the old people title into an “I Do Things” format, tho. “I Allow Old People to Ruin My Life”? See, sometimes this I Do Things is a pain.

    Will: Aw, aren’t you nice. I’d have to agree with the .0000001 percent figure, but y’all are brilliant too. Where do you think I get all my ideas?!

    Anne: That’s usually the case with me, too. A title or a sentence strikes me as hilarious, but then they just don’t go anywhere. But I always write ‘em down and I always save ‘em. I just never know my frame of mind, and sometimes what sounded stupid yesterday all of the sudden sounds brilliant tomorrow. (Of course, then it sounds stupid all over again once I post it.)

    dcr: Why didn’t I think of “whirlers”?! I could’ve written a great poem. Ah, maybe next year. “The Value of Sleep” certainly has great potential, and there must be a reason you saved it. I shall await the finished post with bated breath.

    Jeff: HA! I emailed a friend and said, “I got nothing, and that’s what I’m writing about.” After sifting thru the drafts folder, that was my only idea. Maybe it’s time to get rid of the drafts. Except for Rock Star Bulges and MIL/Cold Tomato, of course.

    Ilana: Why, thank you! Desperation is the mother of invention, I guess. Yeah, that Madcow Disease one. I struck up a witty conversation with a total stranger in Barnes & Noble, thinking it was my husband. He just stared at me as I slowly backed away. I don’t know. I thought there would be more.

    Lola: You’re very welcome! Your photo was above and beyond the dorkiest (and by “dorky,” I mean adorable). Please! Everyone quick go check out the contest results! You won’t be sorry!!!

    Web Design Company Eastbourne: Your author name is spammy to the max, but your comment is irresistable. I like the way you capitalize “Smart.”

    Jay: HEE! Yup, same here. I was all, “What was I thinking, “Nut Box”??? I’m definitely interested in reading “Addicted, ya think?” AND “Confessions,” so get busy.

  28. 28 babs - beetle

    Our milk comes in plastic bottles and we also get flakes around the neck of the bottle. It’s all to do with how they process it now. Yuck!

    babs – beetle’s last blog post..No smoking!?!?

  29. 29 Maureen

    I have a few drafts sitting idly in my folder too… but most are photos. I find something interesting, take a pic, and then come up with the story later.

    I would love to hear the rest of “I’m a….”

    It just has to be hilarious.

  30. 30 Ungirdled Passion

    I think you should write about tomatoes NOT ever being stored in the fridge. This is a big ol’ bowl of wrong and I did not know people do it! Once it’s cut, you have to put leftover tomato in there, and they are never so good after that.

    I need to give up potato chips, too. How ’bout you give out your unwanted potato chips on Halloween? You could put them in nut boxes…

    Ungirdled Passion’s last blog post..Today Is National Fried Chicken Day!

  31. 31 The Mother

    I thought from the title that you had managed to find a solution to the total ignorance and apathy in the world.

    Ah, well, we can hope.

    The Mother’s last blog post..Consider the Source

  32. 32 Chloe Alice Wilson

    For me you should finish “Giving Up Potato Chips” as I’m trying to and would love to know how you succeeded if you did!
    I also loved the Halloween idea.
    My ideas haven’t made it to the drafts folder yet – they’re just scribbles in a big folder that have never been looked at since being written. A job for another day I think …
    Cheers, Chloe

    Chloe Alice Wilson’s last blog post..Through A Child’s Eyes

  33. 33 JD

    babs – beetle: Yuck, indeed. So it’s the processing, not just regular ol’ dried milk? Gross. I’m glad I don’t drink it. I put it in coffee and cereal, but I think I’d gag if I had to drink a glass of it (esp. mixed with orange juice!)

    Maureen: I think I may have to use Regan’s suggestion (above) and have a contest. Whoever comes up with the best “I’m a” idea will win a fabulous prize. I get a lot of ideas from photos, too. I’m always running in and out of the kitchen, taking picture of poor Dave’s breakfast or a mutant strawberry. You just never know!

    Ungirdled Passion: I have to confess: I sometimes just throw away a tomato once I’ve cut into it. Shameful! But I know I won’t eat it once it’s been in the fridge. Well, maybe in a salad. HA! I love your idea for nut boxes. It makes them much more practical, in my opinion.

    The Mother: That’s coming up. And it will be titled “I Manage to Find a Solution to the Total Ignorance and Apathy in the World so you don’t have to.” Voila!

    Chloe Alice Wilson: The “Giving Up Potato Chips” post, alas, may never be written. But your request has given me hope that someday, I might tackle it.

  34. 34 Tiggy

    I had a look through my Tiggyblog ‘Brilliant Ideas’ folder (actually, it’s on my flash drive, ’cause I’m all about the technology); among the unfinished gems I found were “How To Set Fire To Your House” and “Japanese Vinegar Thing?”

    Those posts are going to rock, once I figure out what the hell they were supposed to be about.

    Tiggy’s last blog post..Tiggy’s Thought for the Day – In the Shit

  35. 35 JD

    Tiggy: I’m curious about both of those, especially “Japanese Vinegar Thing?” It’s the question mark that makes it so intriguing. I hope you can figure it out. Perhaps you need to be stoned?

  36. 36 Natural

    i’m going cold, turkey sounds like a good one. i have sweaters you can buy.

    i have NOTHING in drafts, but at least 6 posts in word, 3 i wrote yesterday when i sampled that crack pipe.

    Natural’s last blog post..I am conductor, hear me cook

  37. 37 JD

    Natural: HA! You turkey. I’ll take your sweaters tho. I bet they’re nicer than the ones on ebay. Ah, the ol’ crack pipe approach. I’ll have to try that sometime.

  38. 38 David

    I think you should develop “I’m A.” But never actually say what you are.

    David’s last blog post..The Year of the Octogenarian, and Other Curiosities

  39. 39 Florida Girl In Sydney

    Your draft folder looks just like mine, then every so often I have to go deleting the ones which are no longer relevant– I just deleted an American Idol related draft yesterday.

    I want to know what happened after day 1 of the no-potato-chip-diet.

    Florida Girl In Sydney’s last blog post..Bada Beans and Hee-yah

  40. 40 JD

    David: Oooh, and make people guess, you mean? Like a riddle? There’s definitely potential there.

    Florida Girl In Sydney: What happened after Day 1 of the No-Potato-Chip diet is why there’s no post beyond that one sentence. If I recall correctly, I dove headfirst into a bag and never came out.

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