I Double Dare You To Don All of These at the Same Time
Monday, June 30, 2008
Bad fashion trends are a dime a dozen. The fashion-beauty-military-industrial complex does this on purpose. First, make something that is totally ugly the height of fashion. Then, when every woman has finally gone out and purchased it, decide that it is in fact, after all, hideous and uncool. Since it really is awful, we'll see that and move on to the next trend. Think bubble skirts, denim jumpers and high heel sneakers.
However, there are some trends that are equally awful but JUST WILL NOT DIE. Now I am not Anna Wintour or Stacy London or Tim Gunn but I know what makes my stomach lurch and my eyes bleed. So I present, here for your pleasure, my:
Please Just Go Away List
“Skinny” jeans. It's funny how unskinny, skinny jeans make most of us look. They are not good at all for those of us with hips or if you are larger than a size four. And as long as we're talking about jeans, let's just agree now to stay away from any extremes in jeans like the too low and too high rises. Go out and find jeans that suit your figure and wear them. Trends change each season to trick us into spending money. I have a rule, if they don't look good on Scarlett, they're certainly not going to look good on me.
I know I will make a lot of enemies with this one because I still see a lot of women sporting these but OMG Frenchtip acrylic nails need to go, I'm not a fan of fake nails but these are especially awful. Unless they are done VERY thin, relatively short and meticulously maintained, these look gross. Everyone knows they are not your real nails and everyone has them from ghetto girls to strippers to soccer moms. At this point, they are cliche. And you get what you pay for so if you are going to do these in spite of what I say, please go to a reputable salon and pay more than $20.
Truth be told, fake nails are unhealthy. They are home to many types of bacteria that begin to form between them and your real nail. They put you at high risk of nail damage and fungi. Many of the chemicals they use are extremely carcinigenic, why do you think the techs usually wear masks? If you can afford to get acrylic nails you can afford a mani every other week to get your real nails in shape.
As for toes, let's touch on French pedicures. Unless you get a pedicure every week, skip it. These look the most disgusting growing out, the white yellows, the chips show, it's difficult to touch up and after more than a week, you just look like you have weird monkey feet that were meant to climb trees. The solids are far more forgiving.
In the same vein, flowers/designs on the toes or fingers of grown women. Again, I know this will irritate quite a few people because I see it all the time. At least on the toes there's a bit of whimsy in it, but a grown women with a garnet red, a summery coral or bright pink is much more classic and sophisticated. Unless you are going to wear it with your stripper flip flops, then, by all means, put a rainbow on your toe.
Giant platform flip-flops, so you can wear flip flops and look like a hooker. Doesn't the fact that they are high heels kind of negate the casual comfortable idea of flipflops? Do you know who I see these on all the time, my stripper clients. Do you want to look like a stripper? Oh, you do? Then by all means.
Tops that make every woman look like she's in the last month of her third trimester. Maternity tops as regular clothes, this trend was great when I was preggo because I could buy regular clothes in a larger size and skip the dorky maternity styles. Now that I've had the baby, I'm terrified someone's going to ask me when I'm due.
I saw a girl yesterday in a bikini with Uggs, it was way too Barbarella, couldn't she just wear the stripper flip flops?
Super-size sunglasses so now Grandma looks cool with her blue-blockers too, especially white ones.
Anything splashed across your butt, juicy, stinky, slutty. I especially hate this on older women(trying too hard) and young girls(please don't encourage people to look at their heinies when they're 10, blech, creepy.)
What trend do you wish would finally keel over and go away never to return?
Sunday, June 29, 2008
My childhood friend Stef and I used to while away the hours frequently stoned in creative pursuit of all things hilarious(to us).
We'd make up alternate verses to the Diarrhea Song, you know, the song that goes, "When you're sliding into home, and your pants are filled with foam, diarrhea." Our version included gems like, "when you're visiting a castle, and a chamber pots a hassle, diarrhea", and "when your sphincter's in the ruins cause you ate too many prunes, diarrhea." Anyhow, you get the picture.
We would do other random things like catalogue the entire contents of our purses and write Haiku using these items. For example:
lipstick, tampon, lovenote
swimming in ciggarette flakes
our lives at sixteen
Stef and I would make up alternate identities complete with accents and stay in character all night. Our accents vascillating between rough approximations of Russian and French. Oh, how many times we convinced strangers we were from Belgium(almost no one knows what Belgians sound like).
We would also come up with porn names for mainstream movies. So for all you movie buffs(pun intended), I've compiled a list. Get your Christmas lists ready, many of these are real films.
A Clockwork Orgy
Single White Shemale
Butch Lesbian and the Lapdance Kid
Glad He Ate Her
Cumming On America
Sheepless in Montana
Breakfast in Tiffany
The Adventures of Robin's Hood
The Great Dick Taster
Singin' in the Golden Shower
Her Rear Window
A Midsummer's Night Cream
Intercourse With A Vampire
Hannah Does Her Sisters
Big(no change needed there)
White Men Can't Hump
An American in Paris Hilton
Apollo's 13 Inches
All That Jizz
Pole Driving Miss Daisy
Bi on the 4th of July
Lord of the Cockrings
Spankenstein(one of my favourite titles)
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Poon
Titty Titty Bang Bang
A Tale of Two Titties
Breast in Show
Shaving Ryan's Privates
Stealin' It Saturday
Saturday, June 28, 2008
I've heard of some people doing 'Filch It Fridays' for a day off posting or to introduce their readers to other bloggers they like. So, along those same lines, here's a Stealin' It Saturday.
Long before Youtube, someone sent me this video, I've seen it so many times I don't remember who anymore. You may have seen it yourself, it's definately an oldie but oh so goodie.
Don Hertzfeldt, the short film's creator, put this together in 1995 for a freshman film production class, he even played guitar for the films soundtrack. recording it on a boombox in his dorm room.This small student project was eventually awarded the World Animation Celebration - HBO Comedy Arts Festival Grand Prize Award for the "World's Funniest Cartoon."
Someday, when my seven year old son asks me questions about love, I'll just show him this.
Formerly Fun Friday
Friday, June 27, 2008
It's that time again, Cha-Cha Friday. I'll be busy at the spa ripping, tearing, tweezing and exfoliating. I thought I'd leave you with another Blogopera Post.
I know a lot of people like to read but hate to comment but I would love some feedback on these. Whether you'd like to see more or do you skip them when on the site. I'm not sure if this is a feature I should scrap or choose another forum for or continue with. So, if you have a moment, let me know.
And yes, this picture is of me. I think I was about six. My grandparents had returned from Hawaii and they brought me this ensemble. I was in love with playing dress-up so getting a hula skirt was a little piece of heaven for my six year old self. Now at 35, I think it looks a little tarty but I suppose if the hula skirt fits, wear it right?
Dylan piled all kinds of vegetables on the counter.
“How do you feel about a little pan fried fish and let’s see.” he said sifting through the myriad of cellophane bags, “some sautéed green beans and roasted asparagus?”
“Yum, what about all these other veggies?”
“I’ll make us a salad.”
“Why don’t you let me make the salad.” I offered.
We set about fixing dinner, me tearing bits of purple lettuce and bright green frisee into a wide wooden bowl, him trimming asparagus, slicing garlic into thin filaments and brushing olive oil over the fish. We talked while we cleaned, chopped and readied our simple feast. We tried to catch up on the background histories of where our bodies had already gone.
He talked about the rote activity of the café, how it saved him from self-imposed solitude. He spoke about the things he made, what was going on in his life when he created them. I spoke about my work, how I was fond of it, enjoyed the security but felt like I liked it just enough to keep me from doing what I really wanted to do. I told him how I wanted to write, write things people would read. It was the first time I had ever uttered aloud to another person one of my deepest yearnings.
I set the salad on the table and refilled our glasses as Dylan set down plates piled with food. We ate tomatoes dappled with green, red, yellow and purple so sweet and flavorful I didn’t think I could ever eat a store bought tomato again. We speared parchment slices of Persian cucumbers dressed with balsamic vinegar and chevre cheese. We piled mouthfuls of fish, crisp and brown opening up to the tender, milky flesh and shiny, charred asparagus and thin, tender green beans.
In between bites we talked more, closing some of the gaps, filling in certain blanks. We finished our meal and piled all of our dishes in the deep porcelain sink brimming with hot, sudsy water and left the mess for another time. We emptied the rest of the wine into our glasses and made an island of his couch, resting on either side, feet intertwined, our bellies full.
Sarah Jessica Parker Likes Hot Dogs on a Stick
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Tonight, my husband had a haircut scheduled at the salon right next to my spa. So we left early, had a little Thai food and while he got his hair cut, I did bookwork and tidied up at the spa. After he was done neither of us were ready to go home.
We decided to go to the mall, something we almost never do, but he wanted a lemonade from Hot Dog on a Stick, he has a bit of a thing for the uniforms.
Right off the bat there are the ones that sound naughty, the Shit-poos and Bich-poos. Then there's the Cadoodle, which sounds like something you store your hairbands and clips in but is actually a Poodle/Collie mix. They had a Pekepoo, also a game I play with my bebe.
Of course I saw Doxipoos, Labradoodles, Boxerdoodles, Doberpoos and the Huskidoodles. Then there was the one that sounds like a German noodle dish, the Schnoodle. There were others that also sound like something you'd eat, the Foodle(Fox Terrier/Poodle) and the Snickerdoodle. Okay, that last one is actually a cookie. Just in time for Halloween, you have the Jack-a-doodle.
By far my favorite was the Giant Scnoodle, a mix of a giant Schnauzer and standard poodle. "Hi, this is my dog Chompers(what my son wants to name our future dog), he's a Giant Schnoodle," it just sounds funny. Sadly, they didn't have any Spliterapartadoodles, that's a mix of a Great Dane and a miniature poodle. I had to skadoodle because I was starting to get dizzy.
We then stopped by Spencer's. I haven't been in there since I was probably fifteen and still got a thrill from seeing the cheap-ass vibrators and penis-shaped pasta. We were just bored and wanted to wander through stores where we wouldn't be tempted to spend money.
The store was filled with the requisite goth gear and predictable bachelorette items but there was something else, something more. I realized I totally missed the boat on Father's Day because there on the shelf sat the consummate present, the uber-gift if you will.
Yes, it's the Sarah Jessica Porkher who loves Sex in her Shitty. No, I'm not even kidding. Eew, she's got “three fabulous love holes.” This lovely “lady” is brought to you by Pipedream Products who also sell such gems as J Ho, Booty From the Block. Just pony up $26.95 and one of these lovely ladies could be yours.
Haircut - $40
Each year in July my family and I venture East to the shores of one of Wisconsin's many lakes. This is my place of origin and we go back each year to visit my large and unruly extended family.
We'll eat Wisconsin style(until the buttons fly from our pants). We arrive in our jeans and fitted tees and return in elastic. You think I'm kidding? My kids eat their yearly allotment of corn on the cob, I partake in all of my favorites I don't eat in our vegetarian home and my husband gives his sweet tooth its money's worth.
We'll spend ten halcyon days filled with skiing, boating, swimming, popcorn and movies, bonfires and roasted marshmallows, fireworks, and hammock naps. The best part for me is that although I hate the thought that I might be putting someone out or taking advantage, even at 35, this in no way includes my mother.
When I'm home there's a part of me that reverts back to when I was twelve, she's the only one I can do this with. So I'll let her bring me an afghan when I'm cold, coffee when I sit bleary eyed on her couch shaking off sleep, another piece of pie. I will not utter the words, “no I'll get it” or "don't go to any trouble." Just “yes, please.”
I'll let my stepdad take my son fishing at dawn while I sleep in. I'll let my mom watch the kids while I 'nap' with my husband. For him and I, it's one of the few times we get a break at the same time since usually it's one of us relieving the other. For my parents, its a time to build memories with their grandchildren.
My husband, kids and I catch fireflies at dusk. If we're lucky, we'll have a thunderstorm, something we rarely get at home. I'll get to finish a book or two. We'll see a bevy of friends and family. Our California kids get a taste of wide open spaces and a small private lake seemingly put there for our pleasure alone. We'll spend ten days in the same lush backyard we were married in, the water lapping at the shore.
My stepfather puts on a spectacular illegal fireworks display over the lake. He surreptitiously procures dollhouse-size fireworks with names like the Widowmaker, the Amputee and World War 7. He sets them off from their pier that sports the scorch marks to prove it. I'll tell you another time about when he almost set the quartet at our wedding ablaze.
It's a midwest shangri-la, where the weather heats up and time slows down. Every year we add another day or two to our trip. I suspect eventually we'll spend most of our summer there. For now, we all look forward to those ten magnificent days.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Even though she mauls him daily, he really does love her. She'll climb all over him and he just lays there and takes it, kind of like my husband--just kidding honey, everybody knows you fight back.
Speaking of 'just kidding', my son went through a phase a few months ago where he would say something like, "this dinner isn't very good, just kidding." and "your hair looks ugly, just kidding." and "I'm gonna take a grenade and throw it in her room, just kidding."
So we had to have the discussion with him that just because you say "just kidding" at the end, doesn't negate what you already said, some things you just don't say.
The husband and I thought it was pretty funny and for the next few weeks we'd throw completely off the wall barbs at each other, pretending to be like a few other couples we know like:
"You took the best years of my life and made me the bitter person I am,(pause for effect) just kidding."
"If you would have given me a piece here or there I wouldn't have to go boink the nanny, just kidding."
Yeah, we're twisted and we tease each other a ton, but I've never met another couple that laughs as much as we do and when someone makes you laugh, it's pretty hard to stay mad.
I passed by his desk and saw the sketches were variants of a mantel above a fireplace. The sketch of the room remained the same but the mantels changed, some ornate and complicated, others simple and rustic. The drawings were very good and I was wondering what they were for when I heard him come into the room.
“It’s a piece I’m working on for a client, they want a custom mantel, I’m still trying to convince them to stick with the style of the home and do something more arts & crafts less Victorian.”
“They are all beautiful.” I said as I thumbed through the stack of sketches.
“Which one do you like?” he asked expectantly.
“This one is my favorite,” I say, holding up a sketch of a mantel with a geometric design repeating through the wood, knots and grain visible in the unbroken surfaces.
“Why do you smile,” I asked.
“You picked the right one, maybe you could convince them,” his voice trailed off.
“Would you like some wine?” he asked.
“Sure.” I said.
“Red or white”
“I’d prefer red.”
“Did you design all those?” I asked.
“Design and build, I used to just make what other people designed but I’ve been designing more of my own stuff.”
“I didn’t know you did this,” I said with some disbelief, “you’ve never talked about it. What other things have you done?”
“The table you’re sitting at, the desk, my bed, most of the furniture in this house, almost ten pieces now done custom for other people from design to build.”
“How did you learn to do this?” I asked in amazement looking at everything differently, knowing he built it with his hands. So that’s where those arms came from.
“My grandpa was a carpenter, I spent a lot of time with him growing up and he taught me much of what he knew and the rest, I learned by trial and error. Anyone can do it if you take the time to figure it out.”
“That’s not true Dylan, this is artful, not just a couple of nails and some wood glue, this is solid wood, beautiful lines and these are dovetailed corners, I said running my hand over the smooth seams where the table sides came together.”
“Thank you,” he said and handed me a glass
“Do you have any major likes or dislikes?” He said, changing the subject, as he bent over and sifted through the contents of the refrigerator.
“Are we talking about food?” I asked.
“Let’s start there,” he laughed.
“I don’t like any hairy fish,” I stated plainly.
“You know, sardines, herring, gefilte or any fish that’s packed in anything oily or gooey.”
“Well, thankfully they didn’t have anything like that at the farmer’s market.”
“Anything else you don’t like?”
“No that’s it.”
"You’re easy” he said as he pulled bags from the refrigerator and tossed them on the counter.
“Yes, and I like a variety of foods,” I teased.
Confessions of a Horny Old Codger
Monday, June 23, 2008
This is Cat. Yes, original name I know. My mom named him after Holly Golightly's orange tabby named Cat in the movie Breakfast at Tiffany's, a favorite of hers. Cat was hers first. I was getting ready to move out of her house after college and I was taking my cat with. I told her she was going to miss having an animal around and she should get her own cat.
She picked him up from some house where the family cat had gotten knocked up, "free to good home" the ad said. Of course, me, sappy sucker that I am, totally monopolized this new kitten and got very attached. When I moved, I was bummed to leave him behind. A few days after I had settled into my house I got a phone call from my mom.
“Do you miss Cat?”
“Do you want to take him?”
“Yes.” (hesitant, she might be teasing me, she does this some times)
“When do you want to come get him?”
“I'll be over in ten minutes.”
That's motherhood for you. I convince her to get a cat, she really likes this cat but she let's me have him because she knows I miss him and am feeling a bit unanchored living away from home for the first time.
In this photo, Cat is lounging on his favorite blanket. He also masturbates with this blanket. I know some of you must be thinking a cat, masturbating? Really? Oh yeah. He bites a corner of the blanket in his mouth, gets the blanket all bunched up, does the kneading thing with his paws that cats do and then his kitty wanker comes out and he does a few pelvic thrusts until he gets bored or frustrated(he is fixed) and goes to sleep. Kind of like my husband---just kidding honey.
The thing is, this is also my favorite blanket, it was made for me by my great grandmother about twenty years ago. (Yes, I let my cat desicrate a treasured object knitted my my great grannies very own hands.) So when he gets 'in the mood' often he will find his blanket covering my legs while I watch tv or read a book. No problem for him, he is happy to share. Now maybe it's laziness or apathy or I'm just so used to it but I rarely stop him when he's doing it. A few times I've kicked him off me because his claws are poking through the blanket into my feet or legs. I think its also just unconscious, I'm so used to his horniness I don't even notice anymore.
So it was funny when my now husband, then boyfriend was over and we were snuggling on the couch, blanket over us when cat came by to do his thing. I think my husband just thought he was going to curl up between us and go to sleep but after awhile he realized something else was going on.
"Oh, he's humping the blanket."
Cat is about 12 years old now. He has come to love the noisy, grabby additions to our household. He gets twice daily medication to control his overactive thyroid and protect his heart. I administer this medication and I will tell you, it's a testament of the love I have for this animal. He is the last attachment I have to childhood. I wasn't technically a child when I got him but I was still living with my mother and not yet on my own in any real way. He moved into my first home with me. Then he moved across country with me. We lost one of our best friends together(the other older cat I had). He was there when I was on my own, and then when I met my husband, opened the spa, had my kids, bought our family home. And yes, even in his old age, he still makes sweet sweet love to his blanket at least once a day.
No Good, Stinky, Hair Pants Lady
Sunday, June 22, 2008
A few years ago I had a woman make an appointment for a bevy of waxing services. This client wanted what basically amounted to a full body wax: legs, toes, cha-cha, backside, arms, underarms, brow, lip and chin. Now almost every client I've had through the door thinks they're hairy when they are not. This woman, she was hairy, so hairy that when she took her pants off, it looked like she had hair pants on. She was hairy like Klinger from M.A.S.H., hairy like Robin Williams knuckles.
My female clients are generally very self-conscious about being clean and odor free. I actually had to put cha-cha wipes(like baby wipes that smell better) in the bathroom because clients were rubbing their girl parts raw with the cheap-ass, wood-pulp, paper towels we stock because they were afraid that being an hour out from their shower, they were going to be stinky. This client, I will call her Susan, (not a pseudonym, that's her real name, ha) apparently did not share the same hygenic concern.
I had to really put some muscle into it and work my ass off to wax her. I used far more product than is typical because of the profuseness of her “winter coat”, she was smelly and to top it off, she was so irritating I almost self-immolated on the spot. I don't mean she was just boring, though she was, she was tedious, obtuse, and lacking in any self-awareness. Several times during the service I had visions of stuffing a towel in her mouth until I was finished.
Giant mistake because when I was finally finished, ready for her to pay me and leave, she spent the next 45 minutes talking about her 40's -themed wedding. This was the only time I had between clients in a 10-hour day on my feet, to sit down and eat lunch.
So when her check for like $400 something bounced, I was steaming. I called her.
"Hi Susan it's Chris from the spa, I wanted to let you know your check didn't go through."
(Silence) "Oh, yeah, I saw that."(and you didn't call me?)
"Well, I wanted to let you know."
"Uh, I can't come in and pay you right now because I'm out of town for a week."
Predictably, Tuesday comes and goes and no Susan. So, I call again Wednesday.
"I'm calling because you told me you'd come by yesterday and pay me for the check that bounced."
"Oh yeah, I'm sorry, my car got broken into and they took my bag, it had all my stuff in it, my keys, ID, credit cards."(WAIT A FUCKING MINUTE, DID SHE JUST SAY CREDIT CARDS?)
"Susan, you told me last week you didn't have any credit cards."
"Oh, I meant my debit card."
"I can run debit cards too."
"But I don't have it now because it was stolen."
"So what are you going to do?"
"Uh, I can come by on Friday after work and bring the money?"
"Ok, I will see you Friday."
Friday, no Susan, so I call her from the spa several times Saturday, Sunday, Monday, no luck, she's not even answering her phone. So on a hunch, I call her from my personal cell phone and lo and behold she picks up on the first ring.
"Hi Susan its Chris calling from the spa(ha!)."
"Uh, uh, hi."
"I waited for you on Friday, what happened?"
"Oh, blah, blah, blah," (I can't even hear her now because the blood rushing through my ears is deafening.)
"Susan, I performed a service, I did a good job yes?"
"Not only have I not been paid for that service but I actually had to pay twenty dollars in the form of a return check fee for the pleasure of waxing you."
"So I would like you to fulfill your obligation and pay me the money you owe me."
There were a few more phone calls like this, eventually deconstructing into full blown hostility on my part. She wouldn't pick up the phone after that, probably not for anybody. I left a message at least once a week for 6 months or so, then buried her return check with all of her numbers on it in my desk. Whenever I was having a particularly rough day, I would dig it out and make a phone call to blow off a little steam.
Blah, blah, leave a message, BEEP.
"Hi, Susan this is Chris, just sitting here waiting for my four hundred dollars. Yeah, really wish I could go get groceries for my kids but well, guess that's not going to happen today. I sure hope you can find a way to be okay with the fact that you have taken food out of the mouths of my children. Okay, call me back."
Montel Williams: Did He Die, Is He Dead, When Did He Die, Was He Wearing Pants When It Happened?
Saturday, June 21, 2008
So a quick update on the Montel Williams post. Evidently, I was not the only one who misunderstood the People Magazine reader comment regarding the possible demise of the daytime demagogue.
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Other search highlights include:
anthropod porn(several people searched this one, I love that)
lauren hutton bravo red carpet disaster
gail top chef boobs
saw me naked
bart calls mo's bar innuendo names
prank phone calls
I guess inquiring minds do want to know.
Blogopera #11 - His Place
Friday, June 20, 2008
This is #11 in a series, to read in succession, begin with #1
On the drive over I wondered what his house would be like. Would I find a sleek bachelor’s love nest or disheveled, dirty surroundings of a man living alone. Did bikes, computer equipment and guitars rest where furniture should be with a beer fridge in the bedroom as a makeshift nightstand or would he sport the kind of neatness and order that raises suspicion in a single man.
“Here we are,” he announced as we pulled in to a long driveway next to a stately two-story Craftsmen Bungalow.
The house was massive and I was beginning to think that either coffee was more lucrative than I thought or this paramour of mine had a side job when the long driveway dead ended to a modest cottage house, almost a miniature of the front house. He shut off the car and I followed behind him. He found the key, pushed open the door and flicked on an overhead light.
I looked around me and took it all in. An overstuffed, saddle leather couch worn soft at the seats shared the front room with a large, square coffee table with a solid hard wood slab top, sides inlaid with an intricate herringbone pattern. A small unfinished writer’s desk was pushed into an open corner, spilling over with stacks of papers, sketches and books. A simple coat rack with curved wood sides and big iron fittings stood just inside the door, a zippered sweatshirt and knapsack hanging on one of the hooks.
It was a masculine space devoid of evidence of a female presence but still warm, inviting and peppered with favorite objects.
“This is home,” he said as he walked into the adjacent kitchen and turned on more lights.
The kitchen was relatively spacious but a massive wooden table filled up most of the room save for the galley area nestled between the refrigerator and stove. The table was a long rectangle, three unbroken planks about two feet wide each comprised the top, long benches flanking either side.
He set his things down, “I’m going to change, I’ll be back in a minute. There’s water in the fridge if you’re thirsty and I can open up some wine if you like.”
“Go get dressed, I’ll wait for you.”
While he dressed I looked around the living room trying to gather more information about this man I knew very little about. Only a handful pictures were scattered around the room. A frame on the table contained what must have been a picture of his family. The children were very small. His mother wore a bright floral shift with white patent leather mary janes, her thick blonde hair gathered into a ponytail with a scarf tied in it, her lips rimmed in frosty pink.
She held what must have been Dylan, mouth open and eyes wide in curiosity. Dylan’s older brother clung to her leg, looking away from the camera. His father looked much like Dylan but with darker hair, a moustache and thick, tinted eyeglasses. He wore a thin white shirt with a wide collar and narrow fitting seersucker pants. They looked happy and normal, though most families did in pictures.
There was a picture of Dylan, maybe six or seven, already tall, with an old man, a pipe jutting from his pursed lips, no smile but eyes lit up to where you knew how he felt about the boy. The old man rested a hand on his shoulder and Dylan held up a large fish and I recognized the grin so wide it took over the whole bottom half of his face. There were other pictures, pictures of him at maybe twelve with boys his age, laughing, long tanned legs hanging off a pier as they fished.
He Said, She Said - 2
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Conversations With My Husband
As I am appropriating random images for my blog.
As we lay in bed one night and hear the tinkling of chains as someone walks their dog outside.
Me: I'm gonna blog that you know.
After watching The Mist( a Stephen King movie about wierd attacking tentacle things).
I am officially over Will Ferrell, it is clear he made a pact with the Devil. How else do you explain how he can make what is essentially the same movie, over and over again and people will still come to see it them?
Hammy and cheesy sports movies that rely on the same basic premise and gags over and over again. Each film, taken on it's own is kind of funny in a 13-year old boy kind of way but en masse? Case in point, Semi-Pro is about basketball, Blades of Glory about ice-skating, Talledaga Nights features racing, Kicking and Screaming, this one's about soccer and Zoolander, basically the same film but with modeling as the featured sport. It's like American Pie, the first movie was juvenile but very sweet, but the two sequels and three straight to dvd movies that followed were completely unnecessary.
I loved Will Ferrell on SNL. Remember his Bush impressions, “Strategery”? James Lipton? A maligned Alex Trebeck to Darrell Hammond's Sean Connery? “More cowbell”?
I also thought he was perfect in Stranger than Fiction where he plays a trudging through life IRS auditor who suddenly has a narrator in his head. He also did some great work in Melinda and Melinda, a cool Woody Allen movie that explores how the same essential facts of a story can be told as a tragedy or a comedy. These were both really offbeat premises that worked.
I would put Old school, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy and Zoolander in the same camp, better than average, funny, farcical movies. Yet even these have a little too much in common with the subsequent movies they spawned.
I really liked Will Ferrell, I tried to forgive him this steaming, heaping landfill of shit, I even hope that someday, in the near future, he will make a movie that redeems him. And it won't be about two male synchronized swimmers who get a chance to be on the women's Olympic team only after the tragic and suspicious death of two female team members only to discover a rival team is the source of the subterfuge and eventually overcome obstacles to win the gold. Until then, I would have to say that the cumulative body of Will Ferrell's film work might actually be making the American public dumber.
A Horrible Tragedy
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
I posted my seven year old's apology note he had to write for peeing in the decorative bathroom cup at his Grandma's so I thought it only fair to share the sweet note he sent my grandma after my grandfather died. I like his emphatic "horrible tragedy"(my Grandpa was 87, so while sad for those of us who knew and loved him, hardly a horrible tragedy). I also like the funeral procession he's drawn at the bottom.
I had him write to her a few weeks after the dust settled knowing she was getting lonely. He was very interested in the whole cancer, death, funeral business and asked me a lot of questions. We're going to to see my family in the midwest in July and Grandpa dying came up again, the boy and I had the following conversation:
Him: Where is Grandpa now that he's dead?
Me: Well, he wanted to be entombed so his body is in a casket, in a drawer in a big building called a mausoleum.
Him: So when we go visit in summer, can we go see Grandpa?
Me: Oh honey, that's sweet. When we're there in July we can take Grandma and go visit Grandpa together, she would really like that. We can even take her out to lunch afterward.
Him: So what do you think Grandpa's going to look like after four months?
Me: You do realize honey that while we can visit where his body is and see the plaque with his name on it, we're not going to actually see his body right?
Him: Oh, then nevermind.
So sorry to disappoint. Maybe we need to take him to the Bodies-The Exhibition to satisfy some 7 year old curiosity.
Lesbians Make Me Cry
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
I am in some weepy, weird emotional state right now.
It started with the two lesbians Del Martin, 87 and Phyllis Lyon, 84 who finally got married after like 55 years together. They were the first couple married yesterday after the California State Supreme Court overruled a ban on same-sex marriages. They championed lesbian rights at a time when it was no doubt much more difficult being gay.
After all these years, when I'm certain they know who they are and what they mean to each other without the marriage certificate, they continued to press for it because it was a matter of equal rights. Even in their eighties, they are still committed to that. I'm getting weepy just writing about it.
Yes, a goddamn Visa commercial left me crying like a big, baby, bitch.
Then I watched an episode of Intervention about Hubert, a likeable Native American alcoholic. Hubert had a very fractured childhood and a family history of alcoholism. When his mother, with whom he was very close to, died, he fell apart and eventually became homeless. God, it finished me off, I was a puddle.
I'm not sure why I'm so emotional right now but it's a good thing that the recent arrivals from Netflix are Alien vs. Predator, The Mist and Cloverfield(hubs choices) and not the Kite Runner, Love in the Time Of Cholera or Grace is Gone(my choices), I don't think I could take it.
My baby will do anything I tell her to. Babies are so dumb.
Blogopera #10 - Later That Evening
Monday, June 16, 2008
I woke up first, noticing the sun edging its way down the horizon. I quietly got up from the bed leaving him to sleep for a while. I made myself some ice tea and thumbed through the day’s mail enjoying a brief moment of solitude.
In my bedroom Dylan was still sleeping, the sheet only half covering him. He was an attractive man who definitely fit into what I would physically call my type. He was tall and lean, but not gangly or heroine-sheik thin. He had strong arms that must have come from something other than hefting lattes and espressos. He had a mess of sandy blonde hair that was not long, but looked as if he had missed the last few haircuts allowing it to grow just enough to look tousled. His skin was smooth, olive cast, and slightly darker where his body saw the sun.
He slept in absolute silence and stillness, only his chest rising and falling suggested life. I watched him for a few more moments and then sat next to him on the bed.
“Dylan,” I said him name softly, not wanting to jar him from sleep.
“Hi,” he said opening his eyes, still in that space between sleep and consciousness.
“I thought I should wake you, it’s almost eight.”
“That was a long nap, I was worn out.”
“Do you need to sleep a little longer?” I asked.
“No,” he said, “I’m starving,” and he rubbed his naked belly to emphasize the point. “You hungry?”
“Yeah, what are you thinking?”
“We could go get a bite somewhere, or we could go over to my house and make something, I have lots of good stuff from the market if you don’t mind just cooking together low key.”
“Sounds perfect. Do you want me to meet you over there?” I asked not wanting to assume I’d stay the night.
“No, I can wait while you get ready, and if you want to come back here tonight, I can always run you home, its not far.”
“Just let me get dressed and we can go.”
I left him to laze in bed for awhile while I got myself together. My hair looked bedraggled having slept on it wet so I brushed it into submission then twisted it up into a loose knot secured with a favorite tortoise shell comb. I pulled on a turquoise silk sundress, a simple sheath flattering against my tanned skin. I chose a small, rough chunk of coral wrapped in silver to string around my neck as the only accouterment. Deodorant, lip gloss, flats and a cardigan and I was ready to go.
I shut off the bathroom light and found Dylan sitting in my living room armchair. He hadn’t turned any lights on and the sun going down lit him from behind so that I saw only his silhouette. I walked closer, trying to focus on the features of his face as my eyes adjusted to the dim yellow of sunset. When I got close enough he pulled my hands with his and stood up.
“Are you ready?”
- Last night I was trying to fall asleep when I started thinking about the amount of time I spend doing laundry each week since it's one of a few household duties that I do almost exclusively. It always seems like there is a lot to do but I started trying to quantify it.
There are 5 people in our household, so each week I launder:
~42 socks(the baby and I go barefoot 99% of the time)actually closer to 48 since boy often goes through a second pair when he finds a way to get first pair soaked.
~28 pairs of underwear(more like 26 because my son will go commando if not reminded.)
~Assuming a top and a bottom for each of us, 70 individual shirts, pants, skirts and shorts.
~I force the kids to wear jammies more than once and SD and I sleep nekkid so between the kids, I'd say, about 22 pieces each week.
~10 bath towels each week
~20 face towels per week
~At least 21 kitchen towels because my son and husband get a new one each time they dry their hands and then it ends up in the sink soaked and smelly.
~Assorted bathrobes, sheets, baby blankets, swimsuits, probably 20 pieces.
That's 237 individual pieces of laundry. My son typically empties the hampers, so if I separate, put in the washer, move to the dryer, fold and put away 237 pieces of laundry, it amounts to 1185 times my hands touch one week's worth of laundry.
If I do roughly this amount of laundry from the birth of the first child to the 18th year of the baby, this amounts to 25 years of laundry, which is 1300 weeks of laundry or 308,100 pieces of laundry or 1,540,500 'steps' while our kids live with us. This is not inclusive of the laundry I did before having kids or the laundry I will do after our kids leave the house.
This also doesn't include the multiple times my now 7 year old has dumped a pile of clean clothes in the hamper when I asked him to put away his own laundry. It also does not include the multiple outfits the kids went through with diaper blowouts and potty training or the baby's future potty training time and higher total output as she gets older.
I looked online and the lowest price charged for laundry is $.50 per piece(not including pickup and delivery). So, the minimum cost of outsourcing our laundry(not accounting for inflation and increased output over time) is $154,050 or a little more than $6,000 each year over the 25 years.
This being the case, I think my laundry room should look like this. I can dream right?
He Said, She Said - 1
Sunday, June 15, 2008
Conversations With My Husband
At the park, watching our kids beat each other with branches play:
Me: When are we gonna leave, I'm bored.
Him: We'll go when one of them gets hurt.
After the kids spent the afternoon playing in the front yard:
Me: Boy child, get your light saber out of the mailbox.
Him: I'm gonna put my light saber in your mailbox.
Him: She's so smart, she just said da-da.
Me: She still shits her pants, she's not that smart.
For taking over when I'm at my breaking point and ready to beat them.
For inspiring their curiosity and being patient enough to explain how stuff works(I tend to say, “it just does, that's why").
For your 'man-to-mans' with the boy.
For occasionally letting me get off easy with a “wait 'til your father gets home”.
For taking over the big school projects like rain gauges, volcanoes and robots.
For not always making me be the bad guy.
For your uncanny ability to laugh at yourself when you make mistakes.
For your amazing willingness to relieve me of poopy diaper duty(you are better at it you know).
For always getting home for dinner so that we can eat together as a family, even if it means working in the evening.
For working extra hours and doing what we needed to do so I could be home more.
For indulging my everyday reports,”And today, the baby blah, blah, blah...”
For staying calm and knowing what to do when our kids get hurt.
For letting me vent my frustration at them without making me feel like a bad person.
For still thinking I'm rockin sexy and never letting me forget I'm still a girl and you're my guy in spite of the fact we have three children.
For not teasing me about being a bedtime Nazi(them going to bed precisely at 8 contributes greatly to my mental health).
For being a Provider and a Partner and a Daddy and a Father and a Bestfriend and all the other hats you wear so well.
Making it Look Easy. Who's Bright Idea Was That?
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Ok, I feel a rant coming on but can I just say that when we as women decided(at that conference we all attended) not only would we do most of the family work, but we would aspire to make it look effortless, we totally fucked up. Who's bright idea was this anyway?
As I fess up about being on an antidepressant(I was calling them mood stabilizers for awhile because it seemed less sad and more like a glass of wine) shloads of clients and friends have told me they're on them as well. Most of them are moms with young children. Hmmmm, I'm sensing a pattern here.
On one hand, it doesn't make me feel like such a nut job but on the other hand, it makes me a little sad and concerned for ALL the mothers I know. What is it about the job that's forcing so many of us to take medication to get by? When I went to my OB and told her I was feeling like a worthless piece of shit, like I was doing everything half-ass she went through with me all of the things I do and am responsible for and finally after hearing someone else say, “you are doing too much, you need to go easier on yourself,” I finally believed it. Why did I need a doctor to tally up all the things I do to make me feel ok, that's sick.
When men do stuff around the house, they make a big deal about how difficult it was but here's us all, no problem, it's easy, look I've got it all together, no effort here don't worry, oh sure, I've got time, you need anything else. What are we thinking? No wonder what we do is undervalued. It's like the supermodels who say , oh, I eat whatever I want and never exercise I'm just blessed I guess, when we all know they are smoking, throwing up everything they eat and at the gym 24/7.
We pretend motherhood isn't work and sacrifice. I've heard so many moms say, oh I could never imagine my life without my children. I, on the other hand, frequently imagine my life without them, and guess what, it's never as good as my real life with them in it, but I do think about it. And guess what, I think the women who say they have never thought what their lives might be like if they didn't have children are BIG FAT LIARS.
That's another thing, why are we so unsupportive of each other? Now that's a generalization because I know many women who do support each other, even moms making vastly different choices then their peers, but really, have we not all felt the judgement of other women be it friends, coworkers, peers, even family. My mother-in-law has made references that I'm readying our children for the foreign brigade because my seven year old unloads the dishwasher, makes his own lunch and my four year old makes her bed and gets dressed on her own. I don't even know what the foreign brigade is but I'm pretty sure it's not a compliment. Even my own grandmother has asked me on more than one occasion,”What do you do?” They act like I'm Mommy Dearest for expecting that my kids and husband pitch in.
When I get all worked up about those two I just try to remember that when they were raising their kids, they smoked and drank when they were pregnant, they typically did not breastfeed, and they put their babies to bed on their stomachs(probably right after feeding them peanut butter and honey). They didn't put the kids in seatbelts, forget bike helmets, and did lots more stuff WRONG. Ok, this has turned into quite the rant, guess I'm angrier about this than I thought.
I have had a myriad of jobs since my first at 13. They were of varying degrees of prestige, difficulty, pay, etc.. Motherhood is, hands down, the most challenging thing I have ever done. It is also the most rewarding, heart swelling, hilarious, humbling, exciting thing I have ever been a part of. One thing I've come to love about the blogosphere is that women let their guard down and are far more honest with each other than you will ever get in a playgroup or PTA meeting. I just wish women would stop aspiring to make it look so easy because we all know it's not. And maybe, if we were all a bit more honest about that then everyone in her inauguration to motherhood wouldn't have to go through that period when you think you are the only one having a hard time.
Bravo G "A" Y List Awards - Red Carpet
Thursday, June 12, 2008
I watched this after the Top Chef Finale and oh, it was painful. The award show is on in an hour but let me comment on the red carpet. I like Tim Gunn but he reminded me way too much of Lurch from the Addams Family, no good. What was Lauren Hutton on? She pulled a Paula and a Farah with her incoherent rant and hair twirling. That was just uncomfortable.
Questions, is Gail Simmons(judge from Top Chef) pregnant or has she just gained weight? I looked online and couldn't find anything definitive. Where was naked housewive Alex McCord on the red carpet? That girl showed the whole world her brazilian, I was looking forward to seeing her in clothes again.
This was the most self conscious, uncomfortable red carpet I've ever seen. That's not saying much because I never watch the red carpets before the award shows but this was like a car accident, I couldn't turn it off. I have no idea who the other guy was hosting with Tim Gunn but he sucked. He asked lame ass questions, talked about boobs way to much, made way too many gay references, and not funny ones either. He mentioned bears, leather clubs, barbarella, and he asked the Real Housewives of Orange County if they had ever "hooked up lesbian style," so third grade.
1.She is self-cleaning
2.She makes a mean souffle
3.She is fluent in Latin, Pig-Latin
4.She does windows
5.She can load your ipod and remove the spyware from your laptop
6.She's a speed reader, thank you Evelyn Wood
7.She has a degree in Ikea furniture assembly
8.She is a master in the art of Bonsai
9.She invented Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger just took the credit
10.She is currently negotiating a lasting end to conflict in the middle east
This is #9 in a series, to read consecutively, begin with #1.
I rinsed the last bits of sand from my body, closed my eyes and let the spray hit my face. I heard the curtain move and felt Dylan’s arms circle my waist pressing his body into the back of mine.
I turned around and moved aside so he could rinse off. I poured shampoo on my hands and begun rubbing it into my tangled hair, stiff from the evaporated sea water.
“Here, let me do that,” he said and I dropped my arms to my sides and let him work his hands against my scalp, gently scrubbing and working up a lather. He tilted my head back into the stream of running water to rinse the suds from my hair. He looked around the shower trying to find something. I had bottles of every imaginable size and color crowded around the generous shelves of my tub. If I would have known I was going to have a man showering here, I would have culled it down to a less high-maintenance looking four or five bottles.
“Which one of these is soap?” he said confused, pointing at the array of probably twenty or so containers.
“These,” I said directing him to a cluster of six or seven bottles of what we women call body wash.
“What’s the rest of this stuff?”
“Scrubs, bath soak, shampoo, daily conditioner, weekly conditioner, other stuff,” I trailed off realizing this probably wasn’t making anything clearer to him.
“Why do you have so much of the same thing?” he asked.
“It’s not the same,” I corrected, ”it all smells different.”
He grabbed a bottle off the shelf, “Is this soap?” he asked.
He poured a dollop of it into his hands and rubbed them together until he had worked up a handful of foam. He used the soap and his hands to lather and rub me from head to toe
and I stood there like a lazy cat enjoying an affectionate rub down. I rinsed off as he washed himself, too satisfied to return the favor. I stepped out of the shower and he finished up and turned off the spigot. I handed him a giant, plush, soft towel, one of only two and silently congratulated myself for splurging on the expensive towels. Maybe it balanced the cheap coffee, I thought.
He dried himself off, hung the towel over the cracked, enameled hook on the back of my bedroom door and slipped naked into the crisp, clean sheets of my bed. I had a momentary desire for him to go home. Not that I was sick of him, quite the contrary, part of me just wanted time to relish the last two days, amuse myself going over the details and letting it sink in. The desire for a private reverie passed and I slid in next to him. He gently nudged me until my back was to him and he rest his body against mine, his breath on my neck. It was not even five in the afternoon but we both fell asleep.
It's What He Really Wants Anyway
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Father's Day is quickly approaching, a day to honor the men in our life who show up every day, who support us and love us, who love and guide our children, who hold our hands through urgent care visits and open house nights and happily take over when we've reached a breaking point. It's historically been a day to honor dad and get him some of the things he longs for.
On my husband's list this year, mostly techie gadgets. Like the iphone 3G, all shiny and white waiting for you to caress its touchpad. He's also asked for a giant telephoto lens for his Canon 20D super camera, I suspect this is so he can take pictures of me making goofy faces from far away without my knowledge. He's also been hinting at Halo, but that's not going to happen because that would definitely cut into my backrub time. His wish list also included an electric chainsaw so he can go crazy trimming the giant pineapple palms that surround our house.
Sadly, due to the recent economic downturn and in consideration of our oppressive mortgage, it will be bj's(me) and construction paper cards(the kids) this Father's Day. Be smart ladies and steer clear of the game boxes and HD tvs. Save those stimulus checks for gas, the rising cost of medical care, and stocking the pantry with canned goods. Then buckle up, I suspect it's going to be a bumpy ride.
This is a fictional series, to read in succession, begin with one.
Continued from last time....
We were both quiet on the way there, lethargic from the sun. He drove steady with the radio off, just focused on the stretch of highway before us.
I watched out the window, the faded metal signs of the coastal fishing shops and taco stands whirring past. The breeze lulled me into a trance and I nodded off. A gentle squeeze of my arm woke me up.
“We’re home,” he said.
He pulled the car into my driveway, shut it off and followed me inside without question. I set my bag down, walked back outside and shook the sand from my shoes. I got us both a tall glass of cool water.
“I’m going to go rinse off,” I announced as I handed him the water. He took his glass from my hand, sat down on the couch and put his feet up.
I turned on the shower, peeled of my sundress and suit and inspected my skin, making sure I had done an adequate job with the sunscreen. Against the stark, white tile of the bathroom, I looked so dark, adding to the effect my already blonde hair had paled in the sun. My skin felt warm to the touch but without the heat of a sunburn.
I got into the barely warm shower and the water hitting my skin filled the shower with the smells of our day, the combination of sweat, salt and sun. I rinsed the last bits of sand from my body, closed my eyes and let the spray hit my face. I heard the curtain move and felt Dylan’s arms circle my waist pressing his body into the back of mine.
My bebe is evil. She'll poke your eyes out, she'll snarl at you, she'll smack you in the head, she'll bite your face off. I wouldn't mess with her if I were you. There, you've been warned.
In Praise of Nerds
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
I love nerds.
There I said it. Some girls like jocks, some girls like badboys, I like the late-to-bloom nerds.
Dictionary.com defines nerd as:
a stupid, irritating, ineffectual, or unattractive person, or an intelligent but single-minded person obsessed with a nonsocial hobby or pursuit.
No, no, no, they've got it all wrong. Urbandictionary.com more accurately lists among its definitions:
An individual persecuted for his superior skills or intellect, most often by people who fear and envy him.I also like to think of nerds as late bloomers. The girls and guys that lacked the social confidence in highschool to get them laid or elected to homecoming court. Instead, they learned to develop skills that would one day make them attractive and desirable to the opposite sex. The other good part about many nerds is when they finally 'blossom', they have no idea.
An individual who does not conform to society's beliefs that all people should follow trends and do what their peers do.
A person who gains pleasure from amassing large quantities of knowledge about subjects often too detailed or complicated for most other people to be bothered with.
A four-letter word but a six-figure income. The person you will one day call 'boss'.
Case in point, my husband. A self-described chubby computer nerd in highschool. Now a fit, handsome, gifted lover(he reads, a lot), amazing father, considerate partner, software engineer(cha-ching) and the best part, he's really smart, so I've never run out of things to talk to him about. He is the very definition of tall, dark and handsome and he has no idea. He looks at me and sees the girl who he was too shy to talk to in highschool, so he adores me and thinks he's hit the jackpot. He forgets that in highschool, I wasn't the girl I am now either, I was a smart but painfully insecure, choir joining, cheap glasses-wearing, nerd-girl.
So a note to the women currently traversing the dating world, give the nerds a chance. They might seem goofey on the outside, but you can always work on the clothes, glasses and haircut later. They are so great for so many reasons. They are good with the nookie. Think about it, all that time thinking about sex, imagining sex, dreaming about sex, coupled with a desire to make you happy? Give it to them and they are grateful. They are trustworthy. They're not going to flirt with or ogle other women. First, they don't have the social confidence. Second, they're more interested in the nearest electronics store. Third, they really respect you. Forget the alpha male and embrace the beta guy, trust me, you won't be sorry.
So all you nerds out there, young and old, take heart, if it hasn't already, your time will come.
Some Notable Nerds
Steve Carrell(he is a skilled ice-skater in real life and he made being an old virgin seem cool in the movies)
“Hello, anyone home?” he called out from outside.
I silently scolded myself for having wasted so much time worrying unnecessarily.
“Come on in,” I said as I went to get my things from the bedroom.
I came into the living room and saw him. He looked good, clean and refreshed, brighter than the night before after having finished his shift at the café. His wheat colored hair was still a little wet and he had on board shorts and a t-shirt.
“Hi,” he said, and he kissed me before looking me over appreciatively. “You look nice, is your suit under there?”
“Well, let’s go then.”
The beach was unspoiled and as beautiful as Dylan said it would be. We spent the day lolling about on my beach blanket built for two. There were so few people there that we all spread out down the coast making it feel as if we had the whole ocean to ourselves. Thoughtfully, he had packed a cooler filled with all manner of goodies for a beach picnic, which scored big points with me.
I lay on the blanket letting my skin absorb the warmth of the sun, drinking an ice cold diet coke while I listened to music he had brought, sharing the one set of earphones between us. We nibbled on lunch feeding each other bits of fruit, cheese and roasted vegetables he had chosen for us. I was thoroughly enjoying a day planned by someone else, each treat seeming to magically appear since I didn’t have to prepare it.
After lunch we lay down, tired from the combination of lack of sleep and elysian effect of the warm sun and salt water. While he dozed, I walked down the shoreline collecting bits of sea glass I have always had a fondness for, the washed out greens and blues the perfect reminder of the sea. When he woke, we played in the water, as much playmates as lovers. It was like Eden, each moment so easy and unconscious. I spent the whole day in the moment, not thinking or hoping or trying to predict what would happen next, just taking pleasure in the perfection of the day.
As it neared toward three, the air cooled off and we were both ready to dust the sand from our skin and peel the salty, damp suits from our bodies. I almost didn’t want to go, but make a wish to have this day cycle over and over until the end of time. I’m sure eventually I would get bored, even perfect as it was, but it had been so long since I had a day like this where nothing I could have thought of or done would have made it any better. We packed up our things, left the beach, piled our belongings into Dylan’s car and headed back to my house.
The Giant Suckfest that is Childtime Learning Center
Monday, June 9, 2008
Today is my 4 year olds last day at Childtime, or as my husband calls it, Muddytime, Dirtytime, and Dumbtime.
She's our middle child and between our seven year old son's daily homework and the baby's endless stream of needs, she has gotten the shaft when it comes to one on one flash card, learn your letters time with mom and dad.
When I spoke to the director the next day about moving classrooms, I was told she, yes my four year old, didn't want to move because she had already bonded with the other teacher and therefore, they had not moved her. WTF, who is in charge here? When I asked my daughter later that night why she didn't want to move classrooms she told me that her current classroom had a pretend kitchen and she liked it. When I reminded her that all the classrooms had pretend kitchens, everything was copacetic.
“Well, there is a beautiful beach about an hour south of here, it’s small and not many people know about it so it’s quiet, water’s warm. I was thinking I could go home, shower, get some things together and pick you up in say, two hours?”
“That sounds good.” And it did. Too many of my last Saturdays had been spent cleaning the house for nobody but myself, ironing sheets, folding towels into perfect thirds, organizing my closets by color and other things I suppose fill the time of slightly ocd girls just waiting to be asked to the beach.
“Here,” he said as he finished up his food, let me help you clean up and then I’ll get going.”
“Its ok Dylan, I’ll clean up.”
“Ok,” he said, “let’s see, it’s almost eight-thirty, I’ll be here ten-thirtyish to get you.”
“What do I need to bring?”
“Just you, your suit and something a little warm if it cools off.”
He went to go get the rest of his clothes, keys and things from my bedroom as I cleared our breakfast dishes. He popped into the kitchen.
“I’ll see you in a few okay?“ he asked as he swung an arm around my side and kissed me.
“I’ll be here,” I said as I watched him walk out the door.
After Dylan left I swept through the house like a tempest. I cleaned up and put fresh sheets on the bed. I picked all the dead leaves off my neglected plants and threw away the week old flowers I had bought for myself that had shed most of their blooms and pollen in a circle around the vase.
I got into the shower and loofaed and sugar-scrubbed my body head to toe until my skin was well-exfoliated and shiny pink. I shaved, taking great care to catch any missing bits behind my ankles or strays on the back of my thighs. I masked my face and deep-conditioned my hair. I whitestripped my teeth and redid my only three day old pedicure. Never mind he had already seen me last night completely natural and unprepared, this was another day and not a sleep over but a date, thus, my complicated female grooming rituals followed.
I tried on every swimsuit I owned, narrowing it down to three which then had to be tried on again in a sort of runner up competition. I even considered an application of self-tanner but the lengthy process and potential unpredictable, disastrous results convinced me better.
I packed a beach bag with a towel and my favorite beach blanket, a padded batik-style Indian sheet, a once crisp, cerulean blue now sun-bleached and muted. I had purchased it years before and it unfolded to the perfect size for two people to bask on.
All this done and it was only nine-thirty. I still had an hour before he’d be back. I tried to relax but I couldn’t sit still. I was still in reeling from last night. Not only my prompt but his acceptance and the prospect of today. Last night was spontaneous, unexpected, I didn’t even have time to worry or over think things. But today, the first inklings of expectation were building, this was a date. Would it go well? Would there be more? What about the fact that we had already been intimate, so soon, where did that fit in? Was he dating other people? Was I, if the opportunity presented itself? Was he the sort of person I could see myself with for more than an evening of fun and a day of sun?
I cautioned myself not get ahead of things, to just enjoy that I had romantic plans for a Saturday afternoon and be content to see how it all unfolded. I worried like this for almost a half an hour. I finished getting ready and did a final check before he got back, brushing my teeth another time. I had my bikini on with a sundress over it and sandals. My hair was extra shiny, thank you deep conditioner, and I had only a little makeup on, perfect for the beach. I had my bag, sunscreen and sunglasses. It was going to be fine, I was going to have fun. The words worked to calm me down.
Ten thirty came and went and a small sense of dread began to creep in. I am a strictly punctual person, in fact, typically I am early and will run an errand or make a phone call until the agreed upon event time. Maybe it’s the Midwestern in me or the anal-retentive demand to do exactly what I say I will. This being the case, I have never, in my almost ten years in Southern California gotten used to the loose definitions of on-time or the casualness with which people here come and go.
It probably has a lot to do with the potential huge delays caused by traffic congestion and how this has just conditioned people here to view time as more relative to other things. To me ten minutes seems like running a bit late, fifteen minutes would, etiquette speaking, require a phone call, twenty minutes equals bad planning and over twenty and I’m sure to begin to panic.
It was only ten-forty-five but I realized after last night, I was unsure as to where this was headed. Did he change his mind? Did the haze of the morning after wear off leaving him regretting last night and today’s hasty invitation? I needed to stop this, I thought, this was insecurity rearing its ugly head, nothing more. I reassured myself. He’s planned a nice afternoon, he wanted to see me right away, he stayed for breakfast, he was the one that suggested plans. I reminded myself of all these things trying to inject a bit of confidence.
It was then that I heard a knock at my door.