Re-launched, but still slightly under construction. :-)

Friday, December 28, 2007

Taking a Sick Day

Friday, December 28, 2007 By 1 comment

Emmie is sick. Sort of. She has that rotavirus thing that everyone has been passing around. She's been pooping like a dysentery patient since two days before Christmas. But despite the fact that she hasn't eaten a full meal in almost a week and has the worst diaper rash I've ever seen on her (hey, look, there's only so much that changing diapers, applying ointment and taking frequent baths can do, okay?! I'm not a neglectful mother!), it hasn't slowed her down much between bowel movements.

At the moment, she is busy decorating our heads with various ribbons and bows from her vast collection of hair ornaments.

"Here, mama," she says, handing me a purple polka-dotted headband, sporting a matching pink one of her own.

"Thank you, sweetie," I say, slipping it on between typing stories. I'm supposed to be "working from home," but it's more like "laundry-doctor-dishes-e-mailing-and-telephone-calling from home." I have lots of notes, and I'm making progress on contacting people for interviews, but there's not as much written as there would have been at the office. I have managed to turn in two short pieces.

People are very very nice when you say you're working from home because your toddler is sick. They laugh off the kind of things that would offend them coming from the Metro Spirit office.

"Loot! I shate my booootie!" Emmie scream-sings. And the gentleman on the other end of the line just laughs.
"She's training for the convent," I say, dryly, watching her slip a blue polka0dotted headband onto Scott's head. I snicker at the sight. "You have no idea how wild those nuns can get behind cloistered doors. But anyway, tell me about your upcoming film series..."

Emmie brings me a bow to match the headband, and asks me to put one in her hair.

"Der!" she exclaims. "Now we de same! Mama hasa bow an' Emmie hasa bow!"
"That's very nice, sweetheart," I whisper, trying to appease her and listen to the artist at the same time. Oh, and type. Really, I need three heads and six arms to do all this.

Emmie takes a blue bow to Scott, who sighs heavily.
"Just put it on!" I hiss. I don't want her freaking out because she didn't get her way over something stupid. I'm having a hard enough time as it is.

"Fine," Scott says, as though the mere thought makes his penis shrink three inches. He slips the bow onto the front of his head and snaps it tight, next to the bright blue headband already ensconced in his red hair. "But if she brings me Dora panties, I'm drawing the line."

Where It's At

"I really like this watch," A.C. said. "See how silly I get when I have a gift card?"
"It is very cool," I hedge. "But it also has a lot of parts that will get broken off."
She stares at the screen, rather petulantly.
"But it has TWO turntables!" A.C. tries to convince me.
"Does it also have a microphone?"

Monday, December 24, 2007

Hell Hath Frothen Over

Monday, December 24, 2007 By

My gift to you. Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

This is Called Listening Under the Influence. In Short, Be Aware of the Unintentional Side Effects of Geritol Overuse. And Get Help if You Need it.

AUGUSTA, GA. - Holiday sales might be depressing, but it's no blue Christmas for Josh Groban. His album, "Noël" claimed an unprecedented fourth straight week at number one, a feat never before accomplished by a holiday album. Elvis Presley set the previous record, three weeks, half a century ago with 1957's Elvis' Christmas Album. "Noël" sold 669,000 copies, according to the latest Nielsen SoundScan numbers.

Mannheim Steamroller's "The Christmas Song" made its Top 10 return, climbing six spots to number five. The disc, featuring guest vocals by Olivia Newton-John and Johnny Mathis, is the group's eighth holiday album in 23 years.

Josh Groban? Mannheim Steamroller? What next -a re-release of the John Denver holiday album? The Captain and Tenille put out "Muskrat Christmas?" And what was he the captain of??!! It's enough to make me crazy! How can people listen to this crap?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

"Don't Tase Me, Bro" tops '07 memorable quote list

Wednesday, December 19, 2007 By No comments

By Arthur Spiegelman Wed Dec 19, 8:39 AM ET

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - "Don't Tase Me, Bro," a phrase that swept the nation after a U.S. college student used it seeking to stop campus police from throwing him out of a speech by Sen. John Kerry, was named on Wednesday as the most memorable quote of 2007.

Fred R. Shapiro, the editor of the Yale Book of Quotations, said the plea made by University of Florida student Andrew Meyer on September 17, accompanied by Meyer's screams as he was tased, beat out the racial slur that cost shock jock Don Imus his job and the Iranian president's declaration that his country does not have homosexuals.

Shapiro said Meyer's quote was a symbol of pop culture success. Within two days it was one of the most popular phrases on Google and one of the most viewed videos. It also showed up on ringtones and T-shirts.

Second on Shapiro's list was this tortuous answer by Lauren Upton, the South Carolina contestant in the Miss Teen America contest in August:

"I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because some people out there in our nation don't have maps and I believe that our education like such as in South Africa and Iraq and everywhere like such as and I believe that they should our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S. or should help South Africa and should help Iraq and the Asian countries so we will be able to build up our future for us."

Upton had been asked why one-fifth of Americans are unable to locate the United States on a map and later apologized for her answer not making a lot of sense.

Third was Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's October comment at Columbia University in New York, "In Iran we don't have homosexuals like in your country."

Shock jock Don Imus comments about the Rutgers University women's basketball team: "That's some nappy-headed hos there," was fourth.

Imus created a national outcry and lost his job at CBS radio in April, but returned to the airwaves in December with Citadel Broadcasting.

Other phrases on the list:

5. "I don't recall." -- Former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales' repeated response to questioning at a congressional hearing about the firing of U.S. attorneys.

6. "There's only three things he (Republican presidential candidate and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani) mentions in a sentence: a noun and a verb and 9/11." -- Sen. Joseph Biden, speaking at a Democratic presidential debate.

7. "I'm not going to get into a name-calling match with somebody (Vice President Dick Cheney) who has a 9 percent approval rating." -- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat.

8. "(I have) a wide stance when going to the bathroom." -- Idaho Republican Sen. Larry Craig's explanation of why his foot touched that of an undercover policeman in a men's room.

9. "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that's a storybook, man." -- Biden describing rival Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama.

10. "I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history." -- Former President Jimmy Carter in an interview in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette newspaper.

Oh, English Degree, Where Art Thou?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007 By No comments

Why a college degree is not necessary to work in journalism:

A.W.: "Is Spongebob one word? Does anybody know?"
A.C.: "It is. So it Squarepants."

Higher education at work, folks. With this level of intelligence, we'll all soon be living in pineapples under the sea.

Holiday Gift Idea

Wednesday, December 19, 2007 By 1 comment

"Next, put your junk in that box..."

Sorry, Fraendy Clervaud! But Jim Christian out-funnies most mortals.
And you have excited his wrath.
Hee. I said "excited."

Monday, December 17, 2007

THIS is a Real Advice Columnist

I don't know if it's really too much to ask that advice columnists try to impart wisdom and humor, but I ask it anyway. I wish we had more writers who met this standard.

In Odd News...

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

War on Christmas? Sounds Like a Crusade

The Aiken Standard's publisher's granddaughter must have written this P.O.S., because there's no way that anyone else would have been able to publish something so obviously biased... right? Anyone? Bueller?

"The fear of offending someone by referring to Christianity's most treasured figure has driven individuals and businesses to declare 'war on Christmas,'" the article says. "But is the 'war on Christmas' battle being fought in Aiken, S.C.? We at the Aiken Standard wanted to find out. During our day-to-day out at stores and eateries, we said to clerks we hoped they had a Merry Christmas and gauged their reactions. Out of the 10 places we visited, we heard a return "Merry Christmas" only twice. Two clerks said, 'Thank you.' The remaining responses, except for one, were, 'You, too' or a variation thereof."

First of all, where is the liberal media bias in this story? How did this woman get into a newspaper office? Didn't they ask her party affiliation at the security desk? This is an outrage! She should be working for the Republican Party!

Hyperbole aside, the point of saying "Merry Christmas" to someone is not some secret code for "Do you also accept Christ as your personal savior?" Or, at least, I hope it's not. The point is to simply wish someone has a merry Christmas, out of the goodness of your heart. I think people miss the whole idea of Christmas by insisting that people return it back to them. Isn't Christmas about selfless giving? Is it so hard to selflessly wish that someone has a merry Christmas, no matter what they wish you have? And, in my experience with store clerks, they're often wishing you would just get the hell out of their faces.

Saying "Merry Christmas" is a seasonal shift from the normal "Have a nice day."
"You, too" is a perfectly acceptable response; as is "Thanks." Although the first is preferable, in the way that "Bless You" is preferable to "Gesundheit," if only because it's easier to spell (thank you, built-in Firefox spell checker). In fact, because the statement is as much a vocal gesture of goodwill as putting pennies in the Salvation Army kettles outside the grocery stores, the only unacceptable response would be "Fuck you," or something of the sort. You wouldn't expect a Salvation Army bell ringer to give some pennies to you after you give to them. They just say, "Thank you." And that is - and should be - enough. Because you aren't doing it for a certificate of appreciation. You're giving money, or wishes for a merry Christmas, or holding a door open for someone in line behind you, because you are trying to be a nice person. Will you get something out of it? Maybe. The hope is that by leading by example, others will also be inspired to do nice things. And then the world will be a nicer place to live. And that's not impossible.

But it does become more difficult when you remove personal choice from the equation. Plato said that to be good, people had to think about being good. They had to internalize it as an intellectual pursuit, and reason through their own reasons for being good. Aristotle took it a step further and said that it's all well and good to think about being a good person, but you have to do good works, too. Exercising the good within you - as opposed to exorcising it, ha ha - is the way to be a truly good person.

And in by declaring that there is some kind of cultural war on Christmas, writers like this - or should I say paranoiacs like this - are removing the option to do good, which removes the meaning. When one is somehow required to say "Merry Christmas,"
it becomes a burden.

I say Happy Holidays. It's not to be PC. It's because I think of this time as encompassing a number of western holidays: Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's. That's three, and that's plural, and I hope they're all happy for people and so "Happy Holidays" fits best of all. But most major religions in the world have some kind of celebration at this time of the year, so why not include them? I don't believe that we show our goodness by being exclusive and putting on a pious face in public and requiring such inanities as "Merry Christmas." I think we show our goodness by being inclusive, and putting on a humble face in public and giving to other people instead of requiring anything from them.

The Aiken Standard article continues: "Hints of awareness were spotted at Sunday's Aiken Christmas parade. Interestingly enough, we heard a young boy seated on a Boy Scout troop float in Sunday's Aiken Christmas Parade shout, 'Happy Hanukkah' to the crowd. Right after that, a Girl Scout troop float rode by, decorated with a mural of the Star of David, dreidels and menorahs."

When did "hints of awareness" become a bad thing? It smacks of the 2002 presidential election, when John Kerry was laughed at for being an "intellectual." I wouldn't have voted for him anyway, but I certainly hope that I live in a society where "intellectualism" and "awareness" are valued, not reviled. Besides, maybe the kids on the float were Jewish. Synagogues have been known to sponsor scout troups for the purpose of character training. Or, perhaps, those children really did simply hope that people who celebrate
Hanukkah had a happy holiday this year. I think that shows the kind of selfless inclusion that only children can display. And God bless them for it.

"While the 'war on Christmas' continues, Markovsky noted that he is seeing the 'pendulum swing the other way' — some are offended when Christ is taken out of Christmas, to sometimes be replaced with an 'X,'" the writer for the Aiken Standard goes on.

Well that just shows the ignorance of not only the people who are offended, but also the writer of this article. Because using an "X" for the sign of Christ has been done for centuries, as drawn from the Greek alphabet. The word Christ and its compounds, including the word "Christmas" have been abbreviated long before modernity. "Christ" was often written as "XP" or "Xt," and is still in Eastern and Greek Orthodoxy.

In fact, this symbol, which many Christian may have seen without understanding it's meaning, is called the labarum, or sometimes, the "Chi-Rho" (pronounce it like "Cairo). It also means "Christ," and was developed by the early Christian churches. This symbol used to hang on our Christmas tree in the sanctuary of the Presbyterian church, Grace Covenant, in Conyers, Ga., where I grew up.

The labarum, often called the Chi-Rho, is a Christian symbol representing Christ.

By numbers alone — gathered with our minimally scientific method — there is evidence of the war being fought in Aiken.

First of all, this woman cannot read or add. Because by her own count, 8 out of 10 of the people responded by saying "You, too," or some variation of it, which means "Merry Christmas to you, too," in verbal shorthand. According to the Census Bureau, 82% of all Americans self-identify as Christians. Of course, they're including about .05% who self-identify as Mormon, and a teeny few who self-identify as Eastern Orthodox, which this writer obviously would not include in her assessment. But, basically, it's a useful bit of statistical data. The flip-side: 17.9% self-identify as another religion, agnostic, atheist, or humanist, secular or no religion. Isn't it odd how secular and no religion are separate categories? People, if you take no other elective in college, take Quantitative Methods. Eye-opening. You really shouldn't believe everything you read about "scientific studies" in the news. More math in j-school!

Anyway. Back to my point.

As to what side will win and where it will lead us is anybody's guess, the article ends.

The fact that her research found that Aiken was generally representative of national trends wasn't good enough for that reporter. If this Aiken Standard writer has anything to do with it, the side that will win shall be the ignorant, uneducated and selfish side.

And we are all the worse for it.

Happy Holidays.


A.C. brought this story up a few minutes ago.
"Is it possible that the kids were yelling 'Happy Hannukah' during the parade is because it is Hannukah?" she asked. "It's not Christmas."

And then she pointed out that right beside this story, on the Aiken Standard's website, is a click-through ad for the newspaper's "Holiday" gift guide. Not their "Christmas" gift guide.

Excellent reasoning, A.C. Your cool logic is always preferable to my histrionic emotionalism. It's nice to sit facing you every day. Except you have something on your forehead right now...

Monday, December 10, 2007

Overheard in New York... Six years Ago


Tourist kid: Look! The Empire State Building!
Tourist mom: Where? I don't see it.
tourist kid: The big, pointy one!
Tourist mom: Oooh, let's take a picture!
Passerby: That's the Chrysler Building, you fucks.

Yeah. That would seem like a really mean thing to say to someone, except the last time I went to New York, I chaperoned a gaggle of Augusta State University college students. They were of legal drinking age, which concerned me, but all they really wanted to do was attend seminars and go see the Empire State Building.

"Uh! You guys! There it is!" I whined and pointed.
"We want to go see it," Jennifer said.
"It's a million blocks away! It just looks close because of... uh... forced perspective, or something. It's a known fact that objects on the New York City skyline are further away than they appear," I said. But they weren't listening to me. Heather grabbed my arm and pulled me along.
We walked and laughed for a few blocks, six or seven of us free from exams, essays, waiting tables, editing a magazine, or anything else except to hang out in one of the biggest, most exciting cities in the world.
But I didn't want to walk 25 blocks to see a building I could just as easily see in "King Kong." If I were ever to watch "King Kong." Really, is there anything about the Big Apple that hasn't been exploited in a movie or an episode of "Law & Order?" I thought there wasn't, until I saw last week's episode of "Law & Order: SVU," that focused entirely on Nigerian Christian polygamist legal immigrants who had been religiously and politically oppressed in their own country. That's quite the niche market there.
We walked for a long time. I think one of my toes fell off. "I Left My Toe in New York City" doesn't have the same ring as that song Tony Bennett sang about his heart and San Francisco. But along the way, we passed a building with a line wrapped around it.
"Why is there a line there?" Sean asked me.
"I don't know. It's New York. People think there's stuff worth lining up for," I said, irritably.
And two or three hundred more blocks later, we were there.
"Tada!" I waved wildly with my hands. "The Empire State Building! Let's go."
But they marveled at the glossy exterior, the intricate scrollwork and the sheer immensity of it.
"Wow. Nothing like this in Atlanta," Marvin said.
"What?! There's all kinds of stuff like this in Atlanta, if by 'this' you mean tall construction-type objects," I grouched.
"Well, it's different when you're actually here," Sean snapped at me. And deservedly.
"You mean here as in outside in the cold winter looking at the base and not even the front door of a building we can't get into because we have no reason to he here?" I asked. Did I mention that I was voted Miss Congeniality on the trip? I think it was the aftereffects of all the booze in the limo. Hells, yeah, we took a limo from the airport to the hotel. We're pimps like dat.
But Jennifer, always the sensible one, was pointing at a plaque a few dozen feet above us.
"Uh, why does that say Chrysler Building?" she asked.

Holy shit. My whole life I had them confused.

Somehow, that was an even longer walk back to the hotel than it was to the Chrysler Building. And along the way, we passed that line of people again. Guess where they were.

Yep. The Empire State Building.

L-R: Empire State Building and Chrysler Building from afar.

L-R: Empire State Building and Chrysler Building from the base.

Angel, We Have Heard on High

"Hey, I was going through a pile of laundry and guess what I found?" A.W. asks me.
God, there's no telling. Cat poop? Diamonds? Jimmy Hoffa?
"What?" I ask warily.
"Your suitcase!" she laughs. "I swear I''ll get it back to you one day.
Dude, I loaned that thing to her about 8 months ago. And if I missed it, I'd be pissed. But it's just one more thing to try to close the closet door on. In fact, I'm thinking about tossing a piece of paper in a gift bag that says, "Stacey's Suitcase, get it from Alice" for the office gift swap this year. But it was a gift when I graduated high school, because everyone was so convinced that I was off to see the world. I guess Milledgeville is part of the world... Anyway...
"Meh, I don't care. I'll let you know if I need it," I say. "Oh, wait! I'm going to Atlanta!"
"Oh, I'll bring it back to you," she says.
"No, it's just for two days. I'm only messing with you."
"Two days? You can stick your stuff in a Wal-Mart bag for two days!" she laughs.
"Well, then I'd feel like I was at Angel's house for Christmas!"

Angel wasn't even sitting at her desk. The snappy comeback was totally wasted.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Stupid Quote of the Day (Even Though I Only Post About One a Month)

Friday, December 07, 2007 By No comments

"New York Voices takes disciplined uninhibited singing to a new higher level of disjointed unity."-- Reno Gazette Journal

disciplined uninhibited?
disjointed unity?

eschew obfuscation!

The Stella Awards

When you get that Jury Duty notice in the mail, think about this before you try to get out of it. Remember that the biggest strength and weakness of our legal system is the "Jury of Your Peers"; if you get called upon for Jury Duty please do your part to prevent travesties like this from happening. Without further adieu for your enjoyment I present The Stella Awards...

For those unfamiliar with these awards, they are named after 81-year-old Stella Liebeck who spilled hot coffee on herself and successfully sued the McDonald's in New Mexico where she
purchased the coffee. You remember, she took the l id off the coffee and put it between her knees while she was driving. Who would ever think one could get burned doing that, right?

That's right; the se are awards for the most outlandish lawsuits and verdicts in the U.S. You know, the kinds of cases that make you scratch your head. So keep your head scratcher handy.

Here are the Stella's for the past year:

Kathleen Robertson of Austin, Texas was awarded $80,000 by a jury of her peers after breaking her ankle tripping over a toddler who was running inside a furniture store. The store owners were understandably surprised by the verdict, considering the running toddler was her own son.

Carl Truman, 19, of Los Angeles, Cal ifornia won $74,000 plus medical expenses when his neighbor ran over his hand with a Honda Accord. Truman apparently didn't notice there was someone at the wheel of the car when he was trying to steal his neighbor's hubcaps.

Terrence Dickson, of Bristol, Pennsylvania, who was leaving a house he had just burglarized by way of the garage. Unfortunately for Dickson, the automatic garage door opener malfunctioned and he could not get the garage door to open. Worse, he couldn't re-enter the house because the door connecting the garage to the house locked when Dickson pulled it shut. Forced to sit for eight, count'em, EIGHT, days on a case of Pepsi and a large bag of dry dog food, he sued the
homeowner's insurance company claiming undue mental Anguish. Amazingly, the jury said the insurance company must pay Dickson $500,000 for his anguish. We should all have this kind of anguish. Keep scratching. There are more...

Jerry Williams, of Little Rock, Arkansas , garnered 4th Place in the Stella's when he was awarded $14,500 plus medical expenses after being bitten on the butt by his next door neighbor's beagle - even though the beagle was on a chain in its owner's fenced yard. Williams did not get as much as he asked for because the jury believed the beagle might have been provoked at the time of the butt bite because Williams had climbed over the fence into the yard and repeatedly shot the dog with a pellet gun.

Amber Carson of Lancaster, Pennsylvania because a jury ordered a Philadelphia restaurant to pay her $113,500 after she slipped on a spilled soft drink and broke her tailbone. The reason the soft drink was on the floor: Ms. Carson had thrown it at her boyfriend 30 seconds earlier during an argument. What ever happened to people being responsible for their own actions?

Kara Walton, of Claymont, Delaware sued the owner of a night club in a nearby city because she fell from the bathroom window to the floor, knocking out her two front teeth. Even though Ms. Walton was trying to sneak t hro ugh the ladies room window to avoid paying the $3.50 cover charge, the jury said the night club had to pay her $12,000....oh, yeah, plus dental expenses. Go figure.

1ST PLACE: (May I have a fanfare played on 50 kazoos please)
This year's runaway First Place Stella Award winner was Mrs. Merv Grazinski, of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, who purchased a new 32-foot Winnebago motor home. On her firs t trip home, from an OU football game, having driven on to the freeway, she set the cruise control at 70 mph and calmly left the driver's seat to go to the back of the Winnebago to make herself a sandwich. Not surprisingly, the motor home left the freeway, crashed and overturned. Also not surprisingly, Mrs. Grazinski sued Winnebago for not putting in the owner's manual that she couldn't actually leave the driver's seat while the cruise control was set. The Oklahoma jury awarded her, are you sitting down, $1,750,000 PLUS a new motor home. Win nebago actually changed their manuals as a result of this suit, just in case Mrs. Grazinski has any relatives who might also buy a motor home.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Who knew they cared so much?

WWF Says Warming Puts Amazon at Risk

It's nice to see professional wrestlers taking an interest in the environment.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Don't Call Us, We'll Call You Out

Wednesday, December 05, 2007 By 4 comments

Monday, December 03, 2007

These Guys COULD Have Had a V8, But Instead They Had Some Bacon

The website says: "Our mission in life is to make everything taste like real, delicious bacon, without the fat or calories. You can contribute to this cause by making a purchase below. Choose from 3 bacon-filled flavors – Original, Hickory and Peppered – or buy all 3! Whether you're a regular griller or a gourmet chef, are counting calories or are a vegetarian who craves mouth-watering bacon taste without the bacon guilt, this is what you've been waiting for."

Or buy none of them. I'd think that the invention of Bacon Salt was a joke but it sounds like something my husband would invent.

Gum is Not Enough to Clean a Dirty Mouth

So I finally got my Buzz kit in the mail, with the new Sonicare UV Sanitizer in it. For someone who can't sweep a floor, I was ridiculously excited to have a cleaning tool. Then again, I don't brush my teeth with the hardwood. So whatever dirt the dogs has tracked in doesn't make it into my mouth... or does it?!

See, the thing about dirt and dust is that it is airborne. And experts say that no matter how clean your bathroom is, it's never clean enough to eat off of. Your bathroom will always be teeming with bacteria and according to bug buster, Dr Greg Saenz from Environmental Testing Associates.

Dr Saenz: "Things that they've found in bathrooms that have caused problems are e-coli [which] can make people sick. There are certain kinds of e-coli. There are some salmonella bacteria that have been shown to cause people to get sick. There's staphylococcus aureus that people are always concerned about."

Saenz checks everything that a consumer might handle, particularly toothbrushes. As it turns out, every time you flush your toilet, you're creating a bacterial fountain. And how far from your toilet is your toothbrush? In our small apartment bathroom... not very.

Dr Gerber: "There's bacteria and viruses that were in the toilet and they're ejected out all over the rest room surfaces."

In extreme cases, we're talking salmonella, which can cause severe diarrhea; norovirus, which can cause gastroenteritis; and even hepatitis A, which causes liver disease. So not only do they land all over the place in the bathroom, on your toothbrush, you also breathe them in.

Dr Gerber: "You can breathe them in, but I'm more worried about brushing my teeth with them."

Dr Gerber says we should clean every day, using bleach for sinks, drains and the toilet bowl and disinfectant wipes for high-use areas like bench tops, taps and handles.



Sunday, December 02, 2007

Still Life With Toddler

Sunday, December 02, 2007 By 2 comments

Emerson is being a turd tonight. She is just refusing to go to sleep.
"I wan' new boot," she says, after four books have already been tossed aside.
"Honey, we've already read four books - that's two more than usual. Now it's time to go sleepies," I tell her gently. We hug and smooch and I tuck her in.
"I not go sleepies," she says, with a grin.
"That's fine. Just lay here with your eyes closed," I say.
"I not close-a-eyes." she says.
"Okay. I'm going to close the door, now. I love you."
"I lub you, too, Mama. I not go sleepies."

I settle into the couch with my book, and I sometimes hear her singing to herself. But I don't hear her feet pounding back and forth across the floor, so I let it go. But then I hear the door open.
"Mama? I hafta go potty!"
"Oh, good girl!" I take her hand and we go into the bathroom. "I have to go poo-poo!" she informs me.
And yet, she accomplishes nothing.
I chase her around trying to get a diaper on her. She puts her hand up in my face: "No! I do it!"
And I offer her the option of diaper or time out. Surprise! Diaper wins.

And then we get back to her bed and spend some time snuggling and smooching. "I mate a poo-poo!" she says. She lies. She's just trying to get out of bed.

There's a lot of smooching. Is this starting to sound inappropriate? Do all mothers and daughters smooch each other this much? Whatever. It's awesome that she's so affectionate.

She smooches me again, hard, and holds it, her eyes wide open. "Mmmmmmmmmmmmwwah!"
"Thank you!" I gush.
"NO!" she shrieks. "Say bleh!"
I laugh and pretend to have eaten something gross.
"EEEwwww! Blech! Bleh bleh bleh! Pfft! Patooey!"
She cackles and smooches me again, then pulls the routine herself, rolling her eyes and wiping her lips with the back of her hand.
"Okay, honey. That's enough."
"Wait!" she grabs my cheeks and looks intensely into my eyes. "Lithen! I hab to teyyou sumping."
She leans in as though to whisper something in my ear... and licks me!
"Gahhhh!" I shriek, while she collapses in laughter. "Sick!"
She pats my cheek. "I sooorry, Mama. You wanna big hud?"
We lean in to hug... and she licks me again!
"Ahhh! Stop that, cookoo!" I shriek, while she rolls around on the bed, ridiculously pleased with herself. When she stops belly-laughing, I tickle her a sec.
"Okay, sweetie. It's time to go-"
"WAIT!" she shrieks, grabbing the sides of my face again. "Lithen! I hab to-"
"Oh, no! I don't think so!"
She guffaws, but refuses to let go. "No, lithen!" she shrieks, millimeters from my nose. "Lithen! I hab to teyyou sumping!"
I grab her face and lick her from from cheek to her forehead to her other cheek. She falls, face-first, on her pillow, laughing so hard she can hardly breathe.
"Mama! No lick me!"
"You no lick me!"
We snuggle for a minute, and then I tuck her in again, promising to leave the door open a crack.

I settle back down on the couch with my book, and 20 seconds later, Scrabble starts to bark his head off.
"FRABBLE! HUSH UP!" she shrieks from her darkened bedroom.
"That's enough, Emmie. Be nice," I scold, and get up to look out the window.
"I sooorry, Frabble," she calls.
It's Scott, home from a dinner with friends. He comes in and booms his radio voice all over the house.
"Daddeeeeeee!" Emmie shrieks from the doorway of her bedroom.
"Hey, all yours!" I call, merrily. He grins and goes in to soothe her.

Ten minutes later they come out.
"She's got a poo-poo," he says. Ah. She fooled him, too.
Instead, she clambers up in my lap and lays down with her head on my shoulder.
"Less sit onda couch and watch teebee," she says.
Scott turns the television off and leaves us for a few minutes while we snuggle.
"Close your eyes, sweetheart," I tell her, and she does, covering her eyes with her left hand. She did the same thing as an infant, when she was sleeping during the day.
Scott comes back in, munching on a granola bar. Emmie hears him and sits up.
"You hab a cookee?" she asks, and climbs down from my lap, to clamber up into his. She sits on his lap, facing him. "You like a cookee?" she asks.
"Mmmhmm," he says, his mouth full.
"I wan sum," she says. "Pwease?"
He gives her a bite while I try to contain my laughter.
"MMmm! I lub it," she says. "Iss good!"
He take a bite and offers her another one.
"I wan hode it," she says, cocking her head to the side and furrowing her brow.
"Ohh, no," he says, while I laugh harder. "I hold it."
She takes the bite he offers.
"MMmm! I lub it. You lub it, too?" she asks.
"It's good," he replies, amused.
She gets most of the granola bar, and then asks for a popsicle.
"Oh, no. It's time for sleepies," I tell her. Scott fills her cup with apple juice and we tuck her back in.
"Dank oo, Daddy," she says as her nudges the cup into a crook between the bars. "I lub yoo, Daddy. I lub yoo, Mama."

We smooch her good night, and she stays this time.
Part of me wishes she hadn't.

But she drifted off to sleep in just a few minutes, stuffed white bunny clutched tightly to her chest, one ear lolling over her eyes.
I think she put it there on purpose.

I Forgot: Add 'Gin and Juice' to the List

So I wrapped up some work stuff during which I finished laying out the calendar pages but did not touch any of the extra administrative stuff that is very much sitting on the side of my desk chucking spitballs at me at regular intervals. I call Scott.

"Hey, honey, will you check and fridge and list off the things we need? I'll stop by the store on my way home."
He begins listing off the usual: deli meat, bread...
"uh, let's see... some iceberg lettuce..."
"Iceberg lettuce? Uh-uh. I'm not buying that. I'll get romaine."
"I said iceberg, beeyatch!"
We crack up laughing for a few minutes. Iceberg is nothing but water and chlorophyll, while romaine has a couple of vitamins clinging somewhere on the leafy green sections of the plant, at least. But he's all "lalala, I can't hear you!" That, ladies and gentlemen, is my 36-year-old husband in a nutshell.
"What else?" I ask.
"Hmmm... yogurt, soda, cheese..."
"Mmmkay. Yogurt... Diet Coke... Sprite... sliced cheese..."
"The block is fine."
"The sliced is more convenient for sandwiches," I reply.
"Actually, I find the block more convenient."
"No, you don't! You just want the block!"
"That's right! And don't forget my iceberg, beeyatch!"