1) Her: Let me ask you this, because I need to ask a married person this, and there are not a lot of those around here. Have you ever heard of sex referred to as ‘gravy?’ Me and my ex-, we used to use the word ‘dessert,’ which I always thought sounded so sweet, but I’m not ok with ‘gravy.’ But words come and go… Me: Um, no person I know, married or unmarried, uses either gravy or dessert… Her: Okay, just thought I’d check in with the younger generation! Maybe it’s because you all don’t eat gravy. It’s not a very “in” food these days, is it? [She walks off…]
2) Manual Laborer Short Term Contractor Guy Moving Heavy Boxes Whom I Have Never Seen [starts walking alongside me in the hallway]: I want YOU to have a happy 4th, you understand? Me: Um, thanks, you, too! MLSTCGMHBWIHNS: And if you drink, you should start right now! I mean NOW! And don’t stop until Sunday! Or maybe Sunday night! Cuz nobody really works on Monday! Heh-heh! Me: [pretends to have been heading to an office, and goes in, even though this is not my office and I don’t know anybody in this office].
All day I was feeling distractable, thinking about the many wonderful plans we have with the girls this weekend, and the many necessary logistical details I will be managing on the ever-present mental checklist to facilitate those plans. But stepping outside my own world for a minute, clearly everybody is feeling a little ready to jump past 5pm. A white haired woman plots to get frisky. A young man wants to drink through his paycheck. I mean, I guess. That’s what those conversations were about, right? I was jumpy to start the weekend, too.
Tonight L went home with her daddy, and I took E out for dinner and to a movie. Dinner was noodles, which is usually a Daddy-Daughter date. These were my instructions, per M: Ask her if she wants the green noodles (pesto) or the mac’n’cheese. If she gets the green noodles, she’ll tell you that she doesn’t want the carrots. (There are no carrots in the pesto meal.) That means you should pick out the tomatoes and mushrooms – those are her carrots. She’ll still want her bib (this girl LOVES a bib – but so would you if your favorite food was black beans straight from a can), but she doesn’t like the placemat anymore, so when the guy brings the food, ask him for an extra small plate. Then serve from the main plate onto her own plate; that will control mess and help the noodles cool down faster. These days she likes using a real fork and she doesn’t like the high chair; she wants a booster. They’re tucked in to the right of the soda machine.
Now. Aside from the transgression I can’t convince him to overcome wherein M used the word ‘soda’ instead of ‘pop,’ these were very useful instructions. I know many 2-year-olds demand routines, and for E this is true to the nth degree. I’m glad I had a noodles manual. And although I don’t think M suffers from this affliction, this was a lot o’ important stuff for me to memorize and subsequently replicate. I can see why many daddies feel nervous jumping into Mommy Mode. Or the not-as-much-around to the more-around caregiver. I don’t want to be limiting with the lingo but degendering the sentence came out pretty awkward, didn’t it? I’ll just ask you now to please know what I mean. Thank you!
Even the girls knew it was a short week. E has known all week about our barbecue plans for tomorrow. She has her red dress picked out and lying on top of her dresser. Every night she has asked if tomorrow was Friday. Every time we talked about tonight’s movie and who should go, she talked about her camping chair and Mommy’s camping chair and Mommy’s chair is blue, but can it be purple? They painted flags in school today. Because today was the holiday in school terms, both girls wore red, white and blue. I take pictures of them almost every day but managed not to take one of them together today.
The movie was a free movie on a projection screen in the backyard of our synagogue, wherein E and all her 3-foot sugar-hopped friends ran around until the show came on, and as dusk progressed to dark, several of them fell asleep. Guess who didn’t? We had brought glow-stick bracelets, which we shared with all of E's friends, and E spent the night wearing the circles hanging from the tops of her ears like "earrings" and yelling LOOK AT MY EARRINGS!
Another conversation I had at work today was with a friend whose wife is due to give birth to their first child within the next three weeks. I asked him how he’s doing, fine, yeah?, no! I’m not sleeping! Even Ann is sleeping better than me right now! He has this looking of Dead Man Walking. He knows his life is about to go to something so, so different, but that different is still unrecognizable, unidentifiable, unknowable. We can all tell him anecdotes and spread advice, but who knows what kind of babyhood this kid is going to have, who knows what it (the babyhood) will do to his quiet house, his happy marriage, his busy social life. They’ll all be impacted in both good and bad ways but the specifics are still unwriteable. He is sort of a dead man, isn’t he? Because he’s about to be a whole different person. And for at least a while, the old and the new versions might not even recognize each other. If knowing that that is your fate isn’t scary, I don’t know what is.
So it’s officially a holiday weekend. We have a barbecue to go to tomorrow, and perhaps a birthday cake for the country to bake in the morning, and frost in purple, I’m sure. We have ear pillows for the possibility of fireworks. We have Shabbat, we have several sets of tentative Sunday plans. We have bathing suits and sunscreen. We have kosher burgers to pick up to bring. We have a baby whom I’m hoping to practice wearing in advance of next week’s airplane trip, with the hope of avoiding another security incident. But before tomorrow and the long-weekend’s crazies begin, I want to tidy up a bit. (Not the house. Meh, to that. My ever-present mental checklist. I want to tidy up the checklist.) I want to upload photos. And I can’t find my main camera’s USB cord. I’m only going make that memory card more and more and more full this weekend.
In the meantime, from my first ever upload from my new camera:
Portrait with sleeping beauties (Unintentional Self-)
June 29, 2008
This was taken in our driveway, because we got home but didn’t want to disturb the OH HOW P'RESH-US. (Because risking a flash going off on them doesn’t count as disturbing.)
Why do I blog? So I can write posts like this. Sometimes my brain is just overflowing. I need to just back it up [BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP] and dump it out. I spent my formative years in a very small school where I was the only left-handed pupil, and my handwriting workbook had me slanting my paper to a right-hander's slant, because the school didn't have the lefty version workbook. So I can't keep a diary. My handwriting is just not as purty as my mad QWERTY skillz, kids. Will this post be incoherent to everybody out there? Maybe. Let me know! But it feels good to put it on the screen, to empty out. I believe there will be more brain dumps acomin'...