My seven year old is starting to talk like a teenager. Yesterday, after popping into my bathroom while I was getting dressed to ask me a question, he turned and walked back out saying "Later Peeps!" My husband and I stood there watching him exit with our heads tilted like puppies.
"Did he just say 'later peeps'?"
"Yes. Yes he did."
But today. Today was even better. This morning I yelled down the hall to his room, "Drew, are you dressed yet?" And this came floating back down the hall:
"What do you mean by 'dressed'?"
Who the fuck are you kid, Bill Clinton? Do I need to define the word "is" for you? I walked down the hall, saw him sitting on the floor playing with his legos, in his pajamas, looking at me like the dog when he's just pooped on the carpet. He knew he was caught.
"Well its not that. You have two minutes to be totally dressed or the Wii becomes a distant memory. Kapisch?"
So, here it is the second to last post of a month long test of my imagination, which turned out not to be as hard as I thought it would. I had written a few starter posts ahead of time and saved them as drafts, posts which still needed to be fleshed out and edited and spellchecked and links embedded in, in case I had any days where I was totally out of words or forgot until the last minute and need some inspiration. I used them all, although oddly those turned out to be the longests posts of the month because once I decided to use them I sat down and let the inspiration they offered drive my imagination even further than I ever planned.
I think part of the trick was I cared a lot less this year about who was reading. Last year it seemed really important to use this activity as a way to get more readers, and so I felt I had to be interesting all the time, to get people who read it to forward it to their friends and say "hey, you should check this one out!" This year, I just kind of said what was on my mind, and I stopped self-censoring, I stopped worrying about whether or not it was interesting and just threw it out there to get the words that fumble around in my brain every day to shut up. It seemed to work better.
I didn't expect the death of a loved one, nor did I expect that would trigger so many more words than normal jumbled around in my brain, needing to escape. I didn't plan to start knocking out walls in the attic in order to tell you about that, either. It just kind of happened and I let myself write about it.
(PS my husband actually said to me in annoyance the other day that sometimes he thinks I do things just so I can blog about it. I am choosing to think fluffy pink and pretty, zen-like thoughts and ignore him rather than get into that right now.)(Yay, Celexa! Thank you!)
So its been fun. Its a great hobby, and I get a lot of satisfaction from it. But I have other hobbies, too, and I kind of want to focus on them for a while. I have projects that I've started (as in, sewing and decorating and uh, dry-walling) that need to get finished before the holidays. Although I know some people have said they've had so much fun they intend to continue the habit and keep posting every day, I am not that person. Like last year, I will detox for a large part of December unless the mood hits me. I think I am ready to go dark for a little bit and recuperate. I fear that if I keep forcing myself to do it every day that it will become a chore.
Hi, I'm kind of a fan. I discovered you a few years ago in Entertainment Weekly, my own personal braincandy. You are snarky and sarcastic and irreverent without being stupid and annoying like Stephen "Co-bare", so that's a bonus. You're like the journalist version of Jon Stewart, the funny jewish kid from New Jersey with the fancy-pants college degree who made it to the bigtime and isn't afraid to point that out, to make fun of yourself, your heritage, and your faults. I especially liked the article you wrote defending Martha Stewart, whom you worked for in your younger years. Where everyone else was taking potshots and cracking jokes, you actually defended her, and in every interview I've ever read where your employment in her company comes up, you've never taken the easy shot. You might tease, but you do so respectfully, and that makes you even more credible to me.
But then you disappeared, I think maybe you got fired. Or people complained too much, or weren't reading and circulation went down (except me, I waited for it each week and flipped to the back page first). Maybe the greater bulk of the readers of EW thought you were too opinionated in how you made fun of us for our pop culture obsessions, which is kind of like the pot calling the kettle black, but whatever. People are funny that way. We can make fun of ourselves, but you can't.
So I was glad to see you turn up on staff at the reincarnated version of Business 2.0, over at CNNMoney. Especially the article on Franzia, the winemaker behind Two Buck Chuck. You showed him as both the crass, bigoted cowboy (Like when he said to you: You're jewish and you eat ribs? I'm impressed." - pure genius); and big-hearted softie. This was no easy feat, I imagine.
I'm not sure where all the bitterness about your views on this stupid Iraq war came from, God forbid someone criticize the war most of us are indeed against but can't seem to figure out how to get out of. It's the beauty of being an American that we have the right to criticize, we have the right to agree to disagree, we have the right to say "We're ashamed the President of the United States is from Texas". You have the right to say you don't support the troops because how can one really support the troops and not support the war itself, there is no true differentiation. I find that rather thought provoking, actually, although I don't have the concrete pair needed to say it out loud. (And I mean that figuratively, of course.)
So bully for you, Joel. Please keep popping up in unexpected places and saying interesting things.
1. Yoga. Finally hit a good class tonight. Even better was I was the only one that showed up tonight, so I basically got a private class for the price of a group class. Awesome. My body is sore, but loose and maybe I can sleep tonight.
2. Sweet PetulaMediterranean Mint soap. People, I cannot express how awesome this stuff is. I found it in a little boutique while shopping with my mom over the weekend and I had to buy it. I haven't actually opened the package and used it, I just carry it around the house holding it up to my nose and breathing its intoxicating fumes. It smells like a massage at a luxurious spa, where everyone walks around in thick, white cotton bathrobes and disposable slippers with a glass of lemon water and a glazed smile.
3. Scholastic book orders. Between the two different schools, we get a new order form every couple of weeks. We try and hold it down, I can get out of control buying books in a hurry, and so can Drew. We try to direct him to the library for some things, but part of the joy of reading for him is the collecting of a series. Today his October order arrived: A to Z mysteries, books I through P, and The Black Lagoon series. If reading and collecting books are a joy for him, I am not going to suppress that. It maybe the only thing that gets him off Webkinz (PS If you don't know what Webkinz is, avoid it for as long as you can. Its like gambling or crack for gradeschoolers. Wait mommy! Just one more spin...). We also ordered something special for little brother - a book about sharks with glow-in-the-dark stickers. He's sleeping with it right now.
4. Sewing. My mom and grandma taught me to sew when I was a kid, but I was never really into it. It seemed like an old lady, past generation thing to do. But a few years ago I told mom I wanted a sewing machine for my birthday, and she bought me a used, refurbished one along with some beginner lessons. I had wanted it because I hated paying someone $50 to make me a custom seat cushion, or a simple window valance, when I am certain with a little coaxing I could do it myself. And now I can. I mostly do crafty stuff like make pillow cases for the boys' nap pillows in their newest and most favorite character fabric (this changes often, but pillows are easy and flannel fabric is cheap). I can also hem pants, a good thing as my boys will never have legs as long as most normal sizes of clothing. You know how women's jeans at the Gap come in ankle, regular, or tall? Little boys pants don't do that. They have slim and husky. We do slims, but it doesn't help on the length.
5. I may have mentioned this, but holy hot damn, knocking out walls and crowbarring off baseboards is so damn exhilerating. You just...hit it as hard as you can, for as long as you can stand it, until it breaks off. Sometimes you can kick it loose. This is especially nice if let yourself grunt and holler. It feels so good I'm even ignoring the fact that "crowbarring" is probably not a real word. It made me feel so accomplished, to have done this by myself, in one day. Now the hard part begins: Rebuilding. Now might be a good time to call a contractor, hmmm?
I started a new project today. I've been asking my husband to help me remodel Drew's closet forever. There is an entire second rooms worth of unfinished space behind it and I want to turn it into a playroom. What if its aload bearing wall? Well we won't know until we get in there and check it out, will we? So this morning he saw me marching up the stairs with the drill and the mallet. He's been stomping around the house ever since. I am delighted to report its not a load bearing wall. Its also gone. Hee. I will keep reporting on the progress. PS demolishing walls with a mallet is very therapeutic. Hee.
Guess what! There's a football game on! Don't you care? Missouri vs. Kansas! Its a rilly rilly RILLY big rivalry! Its huge! It goes all the way back to the Civil War!
Yeah, I really couldn't give a shit either.
But everyone else in this town does, man. Kansas City is a city where half the population lives in Kansas and half lives in Missouri. There are football watching parties. There have been people walking around shopping centers wearing head-to-toe blue and red, or black and gold. Neither is a truly good look for 99% of the people who wear it, but hey.
I guess its true that fans of one side don't really tolerate fans from the other. My husband said this morning at the barbershop where it was THE topic of the day, there was a guy in KU gear who got up and left because one of the barbers told a joke which was more sympathetic to Mizzou.
Look, I have family on both sides. I am Switzerland. Plus I kind of hate being a football widow anyway. My husband is an Alabama fan, he just likes watching football no matter who is playing. But lately Drew's been getting into football. He actually watches it, follows it, asks thoughful questions and gets excited when things start happening.
But tonight, he's not interested. Tonight he's watching the DVR'd recording of High School Music 2 for the twelve-thousandth time. Normally I would totally roll my eyes and complain about that. But God help me, its better than football.
"Hey I picked up Oceans 13." "Sweet. You know Julia's not in this one." "Wait...what? Yes she is." "No. She was on bedrest. Her character is there I think but she totally phoned it in. Literally." "Oh." "Agh! Speaking of phoning it in. I have to post to the blog!" "Oh for crying out loud."
Today we are thankful. We're full, too, as many of you are. And yet, getting ready to eat again. The day of eating and football, and looking through the newspaper for interesting shopping ads for tomorrow. And maybe a silly movie on network TV.
This morning, Drew got to ride along with my sister-in-law to Petco where she works, to feed all the animals, which must be done even when the store is closed for the three national holidays its closed for. Fish and lizards and snakes and bunnies and hamsters need their Thanksgiving meal, too. He loved it and was very responsible and helpful, she reported.
In exchange for this, she left her daughter at my house, so Will's big boy helper task was to entertain his cousin. he got a bird's eye view into what's its like to have a little sister. Now, I can't wait for the inevitable question, "Mommy, when are we going to get a new baby girl?"
We're not, kid. You have a cousin. Work with what you got.