Sunday, May 29, 2005

Disappointing vacation

The last time I was leaving town and leaving my baby (this blog) behind, I was headed for the crossword tournament, where trophies rained down on me and I felt utterly fabulous. Tomorrow I leave for Hilton Head Island, SC, with Mr. Tangerine and Ben. We'll be meeting up with my in-laws and spending a few days at the ocean. It'll be warm (whereas it's been so chilly near Lake Michigan all spring), it'll be cheap (the in-laws are paying for the condo), and it'll be relaxing (see ocean, above). But, darn it, it won't offer any trophies. Can I possibly be content with merely...a vacation?

Better to sit here contemplating that than to get off my duff and actually, I don't know, pack or something.

I can also contemplate the guilt of vacationing in a gated resort area of an island that didn't used to have resorts. It used to have regular people living there, people who spoke Gullah and were descended from African slaves, but most of them got booted out by developers over the last 50 years or so. I read all about it at One Good Thing—check it out. It's a heart-breaking story, and I will be mindful of it when visiting the private beaches and outlet malls.

See y'all next week!

Update: Just checked the weather forecast for Hilton Head. The flippety-flipping high temp for Monday will be 63! (The other days will reach the 70s.) So much for tank tops—it'll probably be a tad warmer in the Midwest. Grr. Repeat after me: "The ocean is lovely. You hate to sweat. This will be perfect."

Saturday, May 28, 2005

Remember the slumber party?

The one Ben had with his stuffed animals at naptime? Here's a poorly focused picture of it.

My mom is weird. Honest.

Ben and I spent the afternoon out by my mom's, so I had a chance to pull out my camera and document for the Internets just how wacked out she is.

At the foot of her bed, she has a bag of socks. It's a full-sized comforter pouch, as you can see, filled with an eruption of ugly socks. Really. Would you wear a single one of these pairs? Mom likes to coordinate the color of her outfit with her socks, so she likes to have every color available. Some of her socks previously belonged to my sister or me. In the 1980s.

About 15 or 20 years ago, my grandma gave my mom a bag of hand-me-down pantyhose. Some may have been hers; some may have belonged to her friends or neighbors. My mom, of course, was delighted to take them off her mother-in-law's hands (or legs), even though some pairs of pantyhose had one snagged leg. She'd cut off the bad leg and wear two half pairs of pantyhose at once (two panties, but only one set of legs). I don't know if this heap of hosiery contains any of those heirloom pantyhose or if these items were acquired more recently. While the provenance of the pantyhose is uncertain, their location is crystal clear: on the dining room floor. But don't worry—there's no dining room table, so the hose are not in a room where eating happens.

What does my mom love even more than socks? Old newspapers. That's right. She won't recycle the paper until she's had a chance to go through it and clip out any articles that might be of interest to anyone she knows. She's got newspapers she moved to from the old house to the new house in 1978, and moved again in about 2002. She stores the papers EVERYWHERE, basically. What you see here is her couch (on the right if you tilt your head to the left), coffee table (on the left), and the floor between. (Sorry I was too lazy to flip the picture for you.) Somehow the organizational system she uses involves lots of newspapers everywhere, but the back issues of Newsweek seem to be concentrated on the floor here. And lest you think this was the only cluttered spot in the living room, let me assure you that the armchairs and floors are similarly decorated.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Put down your coffee, please

Have you seen Phil Spector lately?

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Now, about that HPV vaccine for cervical cancer...

Human papillomavirus, or HPV, causes most cases of cervical cancer, which kills 4,000 women each year in the U.S. There's new hope, though: We now have a vaccine that can prevent HPV infection. However, right-wing Christian groups are objecting to the idea of widespread HPV vaccination, positing that giving girls the vaccine is tantamount to telling them they're free to fornicate with abandon. (Because isn't fear of cancer the main reason a girl decides not to have sex?)

For blogger Suzinalexa, this is a personal issue. She excerpts Katha Pollitt's Nation article on the topic. Go read it, and do what you can to spread the word about the HPV vaccine and the Religious Wrong's vendetta against it.

(Hat tip to the Unapologetic Atheist for the catchy term, "Religious Wrong.")

Supreme Court case I'll be watching

New Hampshire passed a parental-notification law in 2003. A federal appeals court struck down that law because it doesn't provide an exception for pregnant teenagers whose health is in danger (the law did offer exceptions when the young woman's life is threatened): According to the New York Times, the court ruled "that even if most pregnant teenagers do not have health problems requiring a termination of pregnancy, the law's requirements, which include a 48-hour waiting period after parental notice, pose an undue burden on a large fraction of those who suffer from such conditions as eclampsia or premature membrane rupture. Consequently, the law was unconstitutional, the appeals court ruled."

The state of New Hampshire has appealed to the Supreme Court, which has agreed to hear the case. NH "is arguing that a teenager with a health problem can go before a judge, who can take health into account even though the statute itself does not mention it. The First Circuit found this argument inadequate, noting that the judicial process, even expedited as the statute requires, can take up to two weeks."

Two weeks? Hmm, yeah, that's too long. I say this as a woman who had preeclampsia when pregnant. Those folks who say pregnancy is a natural process that shouldn't be medicalized are clearly not the ones who had medically complicated pregnancies. Without a team of medical specialists dedicated to keeping me and my pregnancy going, presumably my pregnancy would have eventually been fatal. From this very personal perspective, I oppose any burdens put on a pregnant woman (adult or teen) that require her to continue pregnancy, because sometimes—not always, but definitely sometimes—pregnancy poses a serious risk. It is just plain wrong to require a woman to take on that risk if she is unwilling to do so.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Wanna hear something funny?

This woman named Nancy got a moth in her ear, and the story is laugh-out-loud-over-and-over hilarious. You'd better not read this at work unless they're used to you snorting, and you'll also want to avoid beverages until you're done reading.

My marriage

I went to a cousin's bridal shower today. Mr. Tangerine and Ben spent the day walking, going to parks, and having sandwiches at convenience stores. During their afternoon outings, they had the following discussion:

Ben: Is Mommy at a wedding?
Mr. T: No, she's at a bridal shower.
Ben: What's a bridal shower?
Mr. T: A bridal shower is a party you have before a wedding.
Ben: Is Mommy getting married?
Mr. T: No, Mommy is already married. To me.
Ben: Why is Mommy getting married?

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Presumably they'll be questioning Ebert and Roeper

From the Chicago Tribune comes this headline:

Teenager critically shot in parked car

One could argue that pretty much any time someone fires a gun at you, there's a degree of criticism involved.

What the hell?

According to SiteMeter, someone checked out this blog after searching at Google's UK site for "mother son wrestling." What do you think this person had in mind?

The lazy end to a lazy day

Other than doing some laundry and feeding the boy, I have done Absolutely Nothing today. Did some blog reading, but hardly anyone is posting this weekend. (What, are you people going outside because it's springtime or something? Sheesh.) Did some crosswords (that's a constant). Read through some magazines (another constant). Contemplated whether it is worthwhile or foolish to venture into crossword construction, when it's so much less effort to solve the crosswords other people have taken the pains to create. Did some e-mailing with various Men of the Crossword World (I have too many crossword pen pals now).

This evening, I was trying to work up the momentum to actually leave the house and buy groceries, when Mr. Tangerine asked, "You want me to go?" Hooray! I can continue doing nothing. So here I am.

Though actually, my day was more productive than that. I finally shaved my legs. And I remeasured my bra size (inspired by yesterday's Oprah show and a best-of post highlighted by Bitch Ph.D.'s guest blogger). GodDAMN, could I really be that far off in my bra size? I gotta go shopping and see if I really have been shorting myself one or two cup sizes. Jeezaloo.

Mr. Tangerine left the TV on, with a barbecue show on the Food Network. This middle-aged woman just got into miming the eating of BBQ pork, her eyes all aglow with enthusiasm. Here is what she said (and read this as if you were your mother's age and terribly excited): "When you pick up that pork, whether it's butt or ribs, and you [close eyes in ecstasy] put it in your mouth, and you bite down on it, you just want all that juice and flavor to explode in your mouth." Why, it's BBQ pornk!

Friday, May 20, 2005

So, you like the potty talk?

If our discussion of hoverers has not slaked your thirst for potty talk, head over to Gone Feral to take Loretta's quiz, "Are You Feral Yet?" Darn it all, she's making us wait until after the weekend for the answers. Anyway, here's question 3:

3. Out for a drink at your local watering hole you suddenly realize you have to pee. Ducking into the ladies' room, you
a) Line the toilet seat with tissue, delicately perch there, and relax to the musical sound of your gently tinkling urine.
b) There's germs on that there seat! Hold your ass at least a foot above the toilet, and take your best aim.
c) Same as b, but instead of taking your best aim, gyrate while you whiz so that your pee gets all the Christ over everything.
d) Toilets are for pussies. Grab an empty pint glass, pee in it, and leave it on the back of the toilet seat for the next unsuspecting, thirsty customer.

Quit making me laugh out loud, Loretta. It's hard to explain these things to my son when he wants to know what's so funny.


Time for a little mommyblogger sigh of relief. Ben used to go to this terrible pediatric dentist who was basically ill-suited to treating children. (Why did the pediatrician recommend this dentist??) He did fine, until the first time he got a topical fluoride treatment. He gagged and puked a little. He seemed fine afterwards and had no complaints. However, six months later, hearing that it was time to go back, he freaked out. He'd wake up and ask, "Am I going to see Dr. V. today?" (This was almost a daily concern—starting a couple weeks in advance.) By the day of the appointment, he was so upset that he cried and thrashed and wouldn't submit to an exam. Dr. V. offered a Valium prescription for the next attempt. It made very little difference. We completed the appointment, but he was traumatized. The only bright spot is that there are still one and a half small Valium pills in my house. Just in case...

After that last trip to see Dr. V., I asked a friend for a recommendation (berating myself for not asking sooner), and got the phone number for Dr. Mary. (Oddly enough, even though both dentists do have surnames, they actually go by the pseudonymous-sounding names I have used here.) Ben was most apprehensive before his first visit to Dr. Mary last fall, but she could write a book called How To Put Kids at Ease at the Dentist's Office. Perfect approach.

Even though Dr. Mary was so very unscary, Ben remained a tad fearful of the dentist. I scheduled today's appointment a couple months ago, which started a new round of "Are we going to the dentist today?" To avoid ruining his night of sleep, I didn't mention the appointment to Ben until this morning. He was okay about it, but still nervous.

Fast forward to the dentist's office: we read in the waiting room, and he played with trucks and blocks. He aced his first-ever dental x-rays, saying "That was so easy!" He was the perfect patient, and Dr. Mary was the perfect dentist. He claims he will no longer be afraid of going to the dentist. Hooray! Monkey #1 off my back.

Any suggestions for the Valium?

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Diatribe against the seat-spatterers who lurk among us

Nobody does a rant quite like Suzinalexa over at Post-coital Babble. Her latest post tackles the infuriating and disgusting practice of women whizzing above—and on, and around—a public toilet rather than just sitting down and tending to their bodily needs. We sitters do not appreciate the hoverers and the messes they leave behind. You know, if the hoverers would just not be so messy, public bathrooms would be cleaner, and then the hoverers wouldn't feel compelled to hover. It's a vicious circle.

Goodness, where has the time gone?

I haven't posted in days. Do you forgive me, O Internets?

I'm watching American Idol now and enjoying the lack of crappy singers left in the competition. (Though the crappy people who have been voted off will be singing together in the mall tour this summer. No need for that, no need.) So far, I've seen the first round, and agree with Simon that Bo's performance was the best. He made my scalp tingle more than the others, and that is my primary technical criterion for judging the merits of a vocal performance. (Is it bad that my little boy's singing gave me a scalp tingle the other day? 'Cause he's really not quite Idol caliber yet. Calls my whole system into doubt.)

Anyway, why have I forsaken you of late? Well, this afternoon, I was working on constructing a crossword puzzle, in a joint venture with one of my friends from the crossword world. He actually knows what he's doing, so maybe this will go somewhere. With a little luck and work, my friend and I may be splitting a generous paycheck of a whole hundred bucks.

What else have I been doing? Good question. I'm glad I asked that. Some blogworld reading, a touch of magazine reading (that New Yorker article about the Mongols is fascinating. What's more heinous than a Mongol horde?). Catching up on Lost and starting to get caught up on Desperate Housewives. Laundry, always laundry. And a little playing outside with the kid. I introduced hopscotch today! Man, I totally forgot how to play hopscotch. Good thing our neighbor came along to instruct us.

Ben told me he loves Halloween, so I asked what he wanted to dress up as this October. (He wore the Spider-Man muscle suit last year.) His top choice is dress-up stuff from school—the skirt and the purple hat with a flower on it. Yeah, that's right: My son essentially wants to be a church lady for Halloween.

Last but not least, raise your glass of orange juice and give a welcome toast to our new batch of commenters! Stick around. We'll have fun.

P.S. Esquire magazine mentioned, which is exactly what it sounds like. Pictures. Of erections. Now, I'm not making that a link, but I bet you're at least a little curious. Curious enough to copy and paste into the address bar of your browser?

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Hello, feckless searchers!

Was that you who Googled "cuntal" and found your way to this site? Wow, you must've been disappointed to see I was only mentioning a license plate that read KUNTAL.

Or were you trying to find out where John Oates resides, and all you learned is that I saw him on American Idol?

Or were you the German person who Googled (or, perhaps, begoogelt) "heyday of space travel," only to find out that the new rendition of Space Food Sticks really suck?

If you were the one searching for "get a brazillian wax in utah," I hope your other hits were more helpful. I have never had a Brazilian wax in Utah.

Similarly, this really isn't the place to track down the dirt on "hockey ice feints" or "gack in stores."

But thanks for stopping by, and come back soon!

Goofy retro fun

Thanks to Emma Goldman of War on Error for linking to this entertaining new blog, Threadbared. Retro sewing patterns for hideous clothes and crafts. This link will take you to some super-creepy puppets.

The scary retro stuff is so much fun! As soon as I find out how to work our scanner, I'll tackle that old Knox Gel-Cookery cookbook (©1963) and share some fantastic recipes and pictures with you. Here's a small sample:

Green Salad Mold

A new and deliciously different twist for a popular stand-by—green salad is molded for added pleasure." [Ed. note: Molded, but not ribbed.] The ingredients include:

1 envelope unflavored Knox gelatin
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 3/4 C water
1/4 C vinegar
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 C chopped scallions
1 C shredded raw spinach
1 C chopped celery
1/4 C shredded raw carrots

After you get the whole thing molded into an attractive ring, they suggest that you garnish with tomatoes and olives. With all the spinach in there, it almost looks like lime Jell-o. Lime Jell-o with vomit suspended in it, that is. (Garnished with olives!) But if you really want a main dish that looks like vomit, you can't go wrong with Cottage Cheese and Kidney Bean Salad: "Hearty enough for a luncheon main dish, this salad has a tempting combination of flavors everyone will enjoy." (Those flavors being cottage cheese, kidney beans, French dressing, onion, and cabbage. Ohhh, Satan, how thou dost tempt me!)

I wish I knew what to do with a scanner. Sigh.

Friday, May 13, 2005

It's a veritable dormitory in here

Ben decided to nap on the living room floor today, and to have a little company. There are five pillows on the floor and five little blankets, cushioning and warming one boy, one small bear, one bear in thermal longjohns, one heavy bear, a dragon mitten/puppet, a Year of the Dragon Beanie Baby, a mallard duck Beanie, a small bear in surgical scrubs, and a Lambchop puppet. Just imagine the rush in the cafeteria tonight when they all wake up for supper!

Thursday, May 12, 2005

I try the newfangled junk food so you don't have to

Diet Coke fans (hi, Kristin!), you might have seen the new Diet Coke formulation that's sweetened with Splenda instead of Nutrasweet. I bought a 12-ounce bottle for 50 cents to try it, and I assure you that it really doesn't taste like Diet Coke at all. Or regular Coke. It tastes sort of lemon-limey—but if you wanted your Diet Coke to taste like lemon or lime, you'd buy Diet Coke with Lemon or Diet Coke with Lime. I took one sip and put the cap back on to make sure none of it could get spilled anywhere near my tastebuds.

I think that Pepsi One might have different sweeteners, too, but I haven't tried it. For me, Pepsi products are associated with times of great privation—those occasions when Diet Coke is unavailable. Some of you know what I'm talking about.

Good judge of character

I was watching the local news just now for the latest on the murders in Zion (see below). I tend to watch the news with the TV muted if Ben's in the room, because there's just so much I don't want my 5-year-old to learn about our world just yet.

I paused the TiVo when Hobbs' glowering mug shot was on screen and asked Ben, "Is that a nice person?"

"No," he replied.

"Why not? Why do you say he's not nice?"

"Because he looks like he would break someone," he elaborated.

"What do you mean, 'break someone'?" I asked.

"Like, he would throw them out the window and they would get hurt bad."

We haven't talked about this story, and I can't recall ever talking about people being thrown out of windows. Sensitive kid?

(You can see the mug shot in this Reuters story.)

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

What should be done with Jerry Hobbs

Jerry Hobbs is the rage-filled, domestic-abusing career criminal who killed his 8-year-old daughter and her 9-year-old friend, with scarcely enough provocation for even a spanking. He has apparently given a confession (saying that the 9-year-old pulled a knife), and I can't imagine a jury will acquit him of such a heinous crime. I sincerely hope that the Lake County, Ill., D.A. doesn't pursue the death penalty. No, I'd like Hobbs to return to jail (yet again), this time for the rest of life, and have to contend with the most violent men in Illinois. You know—the sort of men who don't take kindly to anyone who murders sweet little girls. With a little luck, even the white supremacist prisoners will turn their backs on Hobbs. Apparently he hasn't learned enough about being victimized during his previous incarcerations—this time should do the trick.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Is it just me?

Or is it beyond the pale to:

A. Honk your car horn on a residential street at 7:50 a.m.
B. Operate power tools that make loud whining noises on a residential street at 7:55 a.m.

Ben sleeps like the dead. He's on the couch in the living room, close to all the noise, and yet drools peacefully. We both slept on the couch last night because we got new windows yesterday, see, and the window edges are sealed with this caulk, see, and I looked at the label on a caulk tube and it was horrifying. This chemical and that, you've got your mineral spirits. Warning this and warning that, I think there was mention of the brain. The bedrooms are less airy and smelled more toxic, so Ben and I shared the couch. I can fall asleep there to the TV, no problem, but spending the night there with another human? Problem. That's four nights in a row of inadequate sleep. Unlike those of you who always get inadequate sleep and are used to functioning that way, I don't like it. Ben has also been getting inadequate amounts of sleep [from outside, again: honk! reply honk!], too, which is really the bigger problem. And I need to dislodge him from said couch if he's going on that school field trip this morning.

Wow. I've outdone myself. This has got to be my single least interesting post ever.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Hello, visitors from Chez Miscarriage and Cancer, Baby

SiteMeter tells me about 80 visitors came here from my comments at Chez Miscarriage and Cancer, Baby, where I whored my blog in the hopes of attracting people to the ovarian cancer donations link (see top right). Thank you, thank you, thank you for stopping by! I hope you were all able to send a few bucks along to the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition, in honor of Cancer, Baby and any other women you know who have had to contend with this fearsome disease.

I handed in nearly $300 at the Walk for the Whisper this past weekend. Along the walk route, they had signs thanking participants for helping to raise awareness of ovarian cancer. Hey, glad to do my part.

Sunday, May 08, 2005


On this Mother’s Day, let me tell you about some women you should be reading.

You probably all know flea, who writes One Good Thing. She’s got two little boys, a sex-toy shop where you can shop online for your womanly needs, a wickedly snarky sense of humor, and a fabulous literary bent. Join me in pushing flea to write her memoirs of growing up in the South—those posts are simply amazing. Her older boy has some behavioral issues similar to my son’s—I’m a sucker for all the snarky but heartfelt “special needs” mommyblogs.

You’re probably also reading Bitch Ph.D.. An artful blend of mommyblogging about her bright little boy, profblogging about the maelstrom of academia, feminist issues, and so much more. How many times a day do you check in over there?

Over at her blog, SBFH, Psycho Kitty writes about maintaining her sanity while raising two sweet kids, a wee girl and a boy who’s a few years older. Her boy has some issues of his own, and I get a lot out of reading about how PK handles things. And handle things she does—she’s a divorced mom who kicks ass.

Our friend known as “the nut” gives great blog at Welcome to the Nuthouse. Like PK, she’s divorced. She’s working on raising her 5-year-old boy to be a feminist man, and working on a degree at the same time. She combines entertaining mommyblogging with a lot of politics. Someday this mom will be molding public policy, and wherever she lives will be better for it.

You can’t leave comments (grr) at Dooce because it’s just too darn popular, but Heather still writes a mean mommyblog. Just think of the public service she performed by coming out of the closet last year with her postpartum depression. She’s one funny bitch, and I’m also learning so much from her about the constipated people (who knew?).

Another entry in the “moms with special-needs kids” sweepstakes is Squid, who writes the adventures of leelo and his potty-mouthed mom. Squid has a brilliant daughter who’s 8 (roughly), a son who’s 4 or 5 and autistic, and a baby girl. All three kids keep her hopping, but Squid and her husband manage to keep it all together.

Newer to the mom category is my local homegirl Loretta, who has Gone Feral after the birth of her twin baby girls. She’s effing hilarious. None of that sappy “I love my babies so much” from Loretta. Nope. Go read her.

Sarahlynn is a fresh variety of special-needs mom: she has a daughter! She also wins the prize for most creative blog title, Yeah, but Houdini didn't have these hips. Her girl Ellie is a cute blond toddler with Down syndrome. Sarahlynn’s latest post reminds us not to stereotype kids with Down syndrome (or anything else)—she points out that despite the chromosomal thing, Ellie’s genes do come from her mom and dad, not from some magic pot of Down syndrome “traits.” A good reminder for all of us—the same goes for autism, or this, or that.

JT’s another local girl. She writes My Blog Too: Electric Boogaloo, has two boys (one 5, the other 2), and is currently enjoying some heavy-duty first-trimester barfing. (Though she may be one of those women who keeps barfing throughout the whole pregnancy.) And whaddaya know? She’s pretty darn funny, too.

Remember the Ayelet Waldman flap, where Ayelet wrote about how lubby-dubby she and her husband were? Mona, of Mona’s Barbaric Yawp fame, and Sergei (who writes The Lowland Seed) are a hot couple. Frankly, I don’t know where they find the time to be so hot all the time with two young school-age kids in the house. But I do find it refreshing reading.

Mona’s kindred spirit is Lisa, the Bored Housewife. Lisa’s twin boys are almost 5. One of them asked to sleep in the coat closet recently. She took a picture and posted it. Lisa also wants to hoot lewdly at hot construction workers (apparently they grow ‘em hot in Utah). Her blog is sort of a stream-of-consciousness thing. Check it out.

Two new additions to the mommyblogging world (and veterans of the infertility blogging world) are Julie of A Little Pregnant and Tertia of So Close. Both of them struggled with too much infertility crap and complicated pregnancies, and now their houses have been invaded by healthy babies. Julie is so funny, it’s not fair to the rest of us. She has a sweet (if colicky/refluxy/fussy) baby boy named Charlie. Tertia throws South African idioms at us (naff?), educates us about life in South Africa, and teaches us by example how to be Gorgeous and Divine. Her twins, Kate and Adam, couldn’t be more different from each other.

I’m also a sucker for infertility tales of woe, having traveled a bit of that route myself. These ladies haven’t become mothers yet, but they get a Mother’s Day shout-out because they deserve to share their fabulousness with the next generation. In the meantime, you can partake of their fabulousness by reading their blogs.

First up is the saucy wench Getupgrrl at Chez Miscarriage. (Is it redundant to say “at Chez Miscarriage”?) Her egg and her husband’s sperm have created a fetus who is thriving within another saucy wench, Grrl’s gestational surrogate. Best wishes for a healthy baby in a few more months, Grrl.

Then we have some incredible stepmothers who are trying to cook up some babies. Suzinalexa at Post-coital Babble just got a sweet Mother’s Day gift from her stepdaughter, and is planning to try a donor-egg cycle after spending a summer having cocktails on her new boat. Anna Beth at Hashai just did IVF for the first time and sadly, ain’t pregnant. But things look promising, as she and her husband make a hell of an embryo. In the meantime, I wish she’d write more in her blog. More, more! Suzinalexa, and AB, I hope next Mother’s Day finds you pregnant or cuddling a newborn.

Happy Mother’s Day, everyone.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Hi. What have you been up to lately?

I've been busy all week with the work I should have started last week. Procrastination is only fun until you actually have to get cracking, you know? Then it kinda sucks. It leaves so little time for blogging.

That old Virgin (or Vagina) Mary salt stain in the underpass? A guy wrote "big lie" on it with shoe polish and was arrested for defacing government property. Said government washed off the graffiti and painted over the stain with light brown pain (Our Poo of the Underpass!) The faithful have returned, however, to scrape off the paint so they can again view their blessed salt stain. One snarky bystander said, "They found the Virgin in the grilled cheese, they found Jesus in some French fries, whatever, you know, that's great. If that's what people want to believe in, if they want to say that's something significant, that's fine." (Wouldn't that be a great bumper sticker? I FOUND JESUS IN MY FREEDOM FRIES.)

I'm leaving in an hour for the ovarian cancer fundraising walk. Thanks to that bitchin' professor for mentioning it and finding me some more generous donors. Although it's too late to sponsor me in the walk, you can certainly donate by credit card by clicking on the "Donate to the NOCC" link above the blogroll to the right. The National Ovarian Cancer Coalition is the group that's holding today's Walk for the Whisper ("Whisper" is because ovarian cancer quietly sneaks up on a woman). I'm donating in honor of my aunt S. and cancerbaby. If you don't know anyone who has had to battle ovarian cancer, consider yourself lucky. And then, please, please, PLEASE donate to the NOCC. You know, if 20 of the people reading this blog each donated an easy $5, that's a nice $100 donation right there. You can make a difference.

Mother's Day is coming up tomorrow. A special shout-out to any would-be mom who's been struggling with infertility. I know Mother's Day can be bittersweet (or just plain bitter) when a child has eluded you—I wish you peace, health, happiness, and hopefully a baby soon.

To those of you who are already mothers, enjoy the day tomorrow. Remember to let your families spoil you! (Don't clean up after anyone, 'kay?)

Ben has said a lot of funny things this week. Too bad I can't remember them now.

Turning to American Idol, hooray! Not gonna have to look at Scott anymore. Smart money's on Carrie, but Bo's first song this week made my scalp tingle. (That's my stringent criterion for judging the quality of a vocal performance—Did it make my scalp tingle? Scott mostly just made my skin crawl. Bo was a scalp-tingler this week.)

I've been quasi-famous this week in real life. There was a feature article in the local paper featuring yours truly, so I'm discovering which people read the Sunday paper and which ones don't. I had a neighbor shout to me out her window, and my accountant asked for my autograph (yes, I'm just filing my taxes in May. Wanna make something of it?). In this article, I am compelled to point out, my performance at that crossword tournament was deemed "astonishing." This just may be the first time I have been so described, so I'm gonna hold onto that for a while. Makes me a tad giddy.

I'll try to write here more regularly, but the second I sent in the work I'd edited, of course my client sent me more work. Between that and the PMS and a general sense of not being on top of things lately, ack.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Three things:

First, I am in love. Who's the fella? Why, it's Barack Obama. I heard about 20 minutes of his appearance at the National Press Club on public radio this morning. He was so gosh-darned reasonable about, well, everything. His one flaw, apparently, is that he smokes. My brilliant and funny friend Kristin says he has got to quit. Not for himself, not for his family—no, for us, because He Is A National Treasure. (Frankly, I daresay she's in love with my boyfriend, too.)

Second, I saw a surprising vanity license plate yesterday: KUNTAL. I'm guessing it was the driver's last name, but still. Wouldn't you think the first four letters would be verboten by the DMV? (Kuntal sounds like a new adjective, doesn't it? It totally ties in with Bitch Ph.D.'s fetish mag concept, Knocked Up 'N' Totin'.)

Third, here's a meme idea that needs a little developing: "How crazy is my mother? Let me count the ways." Is there anyone who couldn't write a lengthy treatise (or at least a post or comment) on the ways their mom is a nut?