Thursday, July 10, 2008

Bad blogger procrastinates, feels low-grade remorse

Yes, it's been weeks since I posted here. Don't think I don't feel bad about it. It's all part of my Grand Procrastination Package, the deluxe model. Procrastination was, in fact, the topic of the day at therapy on Tuesday. The piddly things I put off—clerical crap, household stuff—there's no real payoff in tending to those things. What's the fun in calling the plumber? There isn't any. This doesn't really explain why I've been letting this blog lie fallow of late. I do like writing, I am self-absorbed, and I do enjoy conversing with you, my lovely readers. So blogging should be a thing I do instead of all those items on the to-do list, rather than being treated like one more item on the ceaseless list.

Anyway. What's been going on in the last several weeks? Well, this morning I had a touch of food poisoning, I think. I seem to have recovered quickly, though I'm still headachy.

A few weeks ago, I got some sort of good news from the kidney doc. He remains perplexed that my condition not only improved so markedly from the Bad Pregnancy Days, but has remained so stable in the intervening eight years. Maybe—just maybe—the kidneys will continue on this path for the foreseeable future, rather than being assured of tanking at some point. Until last month, I'd been working under the assumption that the tanking was inevitable. And now? Maybe it isn't. This is a hopeful thing, and it's dislodging the eventual-doom thinking, the assumption that I would absolutely need a transplant someday. Mind you, this new news doesn't change my day-to-day life at all—the same medication regimen and the same dietary restrictions/paranoia still hold. Yeah, I'm not getting to eat chocolate, nuts, dairy, fruits, vegetables, and legumes without having to budget for them any time soon. It's a big hassle, but certainly not life-threatening (but I reserve the right to whine).

Ben and I went to my 20th college reunion in June, and we both had a blast. We spent two days in Minneapolis with our friend Kristin, and three days on campus. As will happen on a college campus, Ben hooked up with a girl on his first night and they were practically inseparable. Both being 8 years old, the "hooking up" entailed running around outside, talking about favorite TV shows, attending a day camp program, and being field trip partners on the school bus. It was a weekend match made in heaven—Leah's an only child who doesn't mind playing with boys, and Ben's an only child who doesn't mind playing with girls. (And no, he hasn't written to her since then—but he does recount things he did with "my friend Leah." So sweet!)

I had feared that reunion weekend would entail Ben going to bed at 9 p.m. and me being trapped in our room while my classmates mingled late into the night. As it turned out, Ben did OK staying up until 11 p.m. (and kept busy with minimal supervision! such a treat), and I was tired enough to want to sleep then too. The summer solstice + Minnesota = blindingly bright sun penetrating the curtains around 5 a.m. And student housing = uncomfortable twin beds, so sleeping late wouldn't have come easy anyway.

Ben was busy in the camp program until 8 p.m. for two days of reunion, so there was plenty of grown-up time for me. Yay! It was great to just hang out and chat with people I'd mostly not seen for two decades. And there were congenial conversations with people I hadn't known during my college years, all of us being grown-up enough now to chat rather than hang back and wait for our own posses to appear. Sara, who reads this blog, was my roommate and co-DJ for part of sophomore year. (Hi, Sara!) She gave me crap about that last blog post, in which all I did was tout chewing gum. (Which I am chewing right now, I'll have you know.) Yeah, yeah. See what happens? You apply the pressure and then I procrastinate even more. That'll learn ya! If you're someone other than Sara and you went to college with me, I have no idea you're reading this—leave a comment to say hi, wouldja?

Every couple days, there's some little thing that makes me think, "I should blog this." But since I had procrastinated on The Big Post, I couldn't very well just write a short one, could I? Yes, I could. But it's that sort of all-or-nothing thinking that permeates a lot of my procrastination. Is there a pill for that? No? Damn.

I wonder what all those little bloggable items were. Let's see... I finally finished reading another book. I'd started Alison Bechdel's Fun Home last year, as bedtime reading, and maybe a new Games magazine drew my focus elsewhere for a while...and then the book ended up buried in a stack and forgotten. Somewhere recently I came across a link to Bechdel's blog and this post, and then I felt terrible that I had allowed myself to put down a book by an artist who had also played the Authors card game as a kid. (Anyone else remember the Authors deck, illustrated with portraits of various writers who'd written at least four noteworthy titles? Loved it!) So I picked up the book, reread the first half, and finally read the second half. Great memoir! And well-illustrated, given that it's a graphic memoir (graphic as in "graphic novel," with minor bits of graphic like "graphic nudity"). Let me know if you want to borrow the book.

Hmm, it's 80° inside now. Maybe I'll turn the air conditioner on.

The new Batman movie, Dark Knight, opens next week. Given that the movie was filmed in Chicago, with some parts shot just a block away from where we live and other parts making use of classic Chicago scenery like lower Wacker Drive, I'd like to take Ben to see it. The advance word is that the movie's great, but will the violence level exceed what I'm comfortable with my kid seeing? I guess we could always cover his eyes, as we did during the brief torture scenes in Iron Man. Ben tends to like scary stuff, so we'll see.

Before the school year ended, the second-graders got a visit from a third-grade teacher giving them a heads-up about the coming year. More homework! Every day! Even on weekends and holidays! Oy. This sucks. Third grade is the year that the standardized testing kicks in, so there will be a ton of "teaching to the test" up until testing week. Ick. Just seven more weeks of no homework before the school year starts and my afternoons become stressful. I just ordered a CD video game called Math Blaster, which a friend credits for her son's straight A's in math last year. Ben mostly gets B's and C's in math, so I figure it's worth a shot and maybe it'll help smooth over third-grade homework woes.

Speaking of school, what are the odds that the next president will roll back No Child Left Behind and all its teaching-to-the-test crap?

Time for lunch. Thanks for tolerating three weeks of blogging smushed into a single post, dear hearts!


Anonymous said...

Hurray! Something other than gum comments.

I do the same thing -- procrastinate replying to my friends' emails until months have gone by and I feel like whatever I write has to be of great abundance and quality to make up for not doing it sooner.... phooey.

Reunion was fun. And yes, we did see the English Beat. It was a sweaty good time.


Narya said...

I'm just happy I don't have to see the post about Orbit any more! though I am hardly one to talk, with my sporadicity.

E. said...

I admit, as much as I love all my favorite blogs, it's sometimes nice to see someone take a blogging hiatus. It makes me feel way less lame about posting only every 11-17 days. So, see there? You did a good deed and you didn't even know it.

I loved Fun Home. I've always been a Dykes to Watch Out For fan, but Bechdel's graphic novel memoir is a whole other level. Everyone should read it.

Glad your reunion was fun. How cool that Ben went along and had fun. And congrats on good kidney news. May they continue to do their job for many years to come.

Narya said...

Same here, e., about Alison Bechdel. And I think she and I were in college at the same place at the same time, though I don't know if I ever met her.

Word verification: eewjbamo

bitchphd said...

You know I procrasintate.

Congrats on the kidneys!

Delia Christina said...

i'm procrastinating as i type this...

as for Dark Knight - i would recommend seeing it first and then take the kid once you check it out. i think it's going to be rather intense - Joker *and* the origin of Two Face?!?

(and definitely don't take him to see it in IMAX - it could make his head pop off.)

Orange said...

You know, he was fine with Hellboy II on Saturday night. He might well be fine with Dark Knight. I dunno.

Mo said...

That picture of Ben is so cute! I can totally see your cherub face in him. I'm glad you had such a good time at reunion. I'm hoping that in 3 years our kids will stay so well occupied. The English Beat? I'm jealous, although we got to see Gear Daddies, who were a big favorite of mine in the day.