Personal Statement

Personal Statement

Friday, April 26, 2013

Dinner Table Conversation

Big Kid:  So I was thinking that we ought to try out the new trampoline park, because . . .

Me:  Yeah, okay.

Big Kid:  . . . it's tons closer than Urban Air, and - wait, did you just agree?

Me:  Yeah, I'm considering it as a venue for an event I'm helping to organize.

Little Kid:  My birthday?

Me:  No, an adult event.

Little Kid:  GOOD.  Because I'm committed to a mad scientist theme, and I don't think that would work at a trampoline park.

[Note:  Little Kid's birthday is at the end of October.  Another note:  Both kids inherited my party-planning gene.]

Me:  You know, back in my day, birthday parties didn't really HAVE themes.  

Little Kid:  HUH?
Me:  Like, if you went to the roller rink, the theme of the party was just "roller skating."

Little Kid:  Wow.  You were boring when you were a kid.

Big Kid:  No, she was actually WAY MORE FUN back then.

Me:  Congratulations, guys.  You managed to insult me equally but in totally different ways.  I'm impressed.

Big Kid:  No, what I mean is that you were "normal-for-a-kid fun" - which, sorry, by definition, is more fun than "adult fun" - but Nana, maybe, wasn't fun and phoned in your birthday parties.

Me:  But she didn't phone them in.  That's the point.  NOBODY'S PARTY HAD A THEME.  Unless "donkey pinata" qualifies as a theme.

Spouse:  Donkey.

Me:  Huh?  I said donkey.

Spouse:  No, the default theme was JUST DONKEY.  Donkey pinata, pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey.

Me:  OOOH, you're on to something!  I wonder why we were so donkey-obsessed as a culture?  Carter was in office - maybe it was a backlash-against-Nixon, Democrat-versus-Republican thing?  HEY, I JUST REMEMBERED:  SCARY CLOWNS.

Both kids:  WHAT?

Me:  Occasionally, just to mix things up, your mom would spring for a really scary clown.  Possibly a mime.  You know, to make balloon animals and squirt water out of plastic flowers and totally creep everyone out.

Little Kid:  That's horrible.

Me:  No, growing up in the seventies was awesome.  

Both kids:  [Skeptical looks.]

Me:  Okay, you just have to trust us on this. 

Exhibit A, above.  Exhibit B, below.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Spousal Personal Growth

This week's "Mindy Project" turned out to be a repeat - one that I hadn't seen.  Our DVR is only programmed to record new episodes.  (I started to type "tape new episodes" just now, but then the Big Kid's voice-in-my-head reminded me that "people haven't TAPED shows in EONS, MOM."  Yeah, and they haven't "Pulsed" money out of an ATM in eons, either, but I still slip up and say that, too.  I'm [marginally] old, kid - deal with it.)


Sweet Spouse manually recorded the show for me, AND when I called him on the way home that evening, he provided me with a brief synopsis of the episode, confirming that, in fact, it wasn't one that I had actually seen.  He even called the characters by the right names.

Me to him:  You're so sweet.   Did you read that information off of the DVR menu?

Him to me:  No, I actually watched the show.

Me to him:  _________________.

Dead, "I got nuthin'" silence.  Seriously?  Spouse doesn't like "Mindy Project" - or at least he didn't, I suspect, in large part, because one of the characters looks ridiculously similar to my high school-slash-"sorta-continued-to-date-him-in-college" boyfriend.  Spouse has a weird but kind of sweet knee-jerk bias against Italian types of the Chris Messina order:

But then a few weeks ago I pointed out that, in addition to really liking the show for its sharp writing, the developing story of two doctors (one of whom just happens to be played by this guy) who work together, evolve into friends and then realize that they don't enjoy watching each other date other people and, just possibly, want to spend the rest of their lives together is eerily familiar to our own "When Harry Met Sally" story.  (Substitute "law students" for "doctors," and the description holds:  we met when we were both tapped to serve as teaching assistants to the first-year research-and-writing professors, spent a lot of time bantering in the staff lounge, became each other's best drinking buddies, and it all progressed from there.)

Apparently my explanation was some sort of tipping point - because now Boy Child Who I Married actually knows the names of characters - even the name of their fictional medical practice.

So now I can watch my favorite show with the best friend who happens to be just a smidge above the rest of the tier.  And has a lifetime appointment in such regard.

Chair Apple

In the normal world, you might find an apple in a refrigerator, or in a bowl on a kitchen counter or dining table.  You might even find an apple in a backpack, bound for the lunchroom or a teacher's desk.

In Boy World, you find apples in your armchair.

Witness Exhibit "A."

I chased the kids out of the front room the other night, turned off the television so as to bask in blissful silence, settled into the comfy leather recliner-that-doesn't-look-like-a-recliner - and felt a bulge of some sort pushing against my tush.

Tennis ball?  Balled-up sock?  Nope - apple.

Because, DUH, you keep apples in the crack of a chair.  You know, for LATER.

Which is why every surface in our house is (easily wipeable) leather, slipcovered or Scotchgard-ed.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Proof of Life . . . Again

USA Swimming needs to see my 8 year-old's birth certificate.  You know, to confirm that he isn't actually a 24 year-old Chinese woman.

And, of course, I failed to find said birth certificate on my first pass through the stash o' junk that I keep in my office.  I did find a manila envelope stuffed with a bunch of receipts from a trip to DC that we took in 2004.  Hey, I figured out that I was pregnant with the kid on that trip!  Unfortunately, none of the receipts reflect that epiphany.

I'm confident that I had to prove that he exists once before:  last I checked, he was enrolled in school.  However, his "school records" file seems to have disappeared into the ether.  (Of course, I found the equivalent file for his brother IMMEDIATELY, because that wasn't the one I was looking for.)

Clever Spouse has offered to procure a copy from the registrar of the elementary school.  In the interim, I am tempted to send the admin manager of our swim team one of the several date-stamped ultrasound pictures that I found on my work computer.  Because, you know, THOSE I keep readily available.

Proof that I was pregnant with the child in the summer of 2004 is proof enough, right?  USA Swimming can do the math from there.  Or have their friends at Omega crunch the numbers for them.  Those guys build the timers, they can totally figure out the approximate birthdate of a fetus in utero who was 20 weeks-ish in early June.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Wise Words

I am officially in love with "The Mindy Project" - a new episode of which airs tonight, that I will be unable to watch in real time due to a command performance in front of the Junior League Board of Directors followed by a dinner engagement with Woman's Club girlies at Joe T. Garcia's.

But enough about my first world girl problems.  (And, for the record, I'm not actually complaining.  I have a DVR.  And my dinner at Joe T's is being comped.)

In honor of my new favorite show, I wanted to share a nugget o' sheer wisdom from a past episode - a line that, possibly, could have been written by another writer, but I would like to think that it was penned by Ms. Kaling herself.  Because, you know, it sounds like her.

(Call me, Min.  We can hang out and surf the Kendra Scott jewelry Web site together.)

I love this line so much that I want to stitch it on a pillow.  And I already sort-of-virtually did:

I [heart] my tier.  Which is modular and could be expanded to fit one Ms. Mindy Kaling.

(Seriously.  Call me.)

Monday, April 22, 2013

Earth Day Observance, and Observations

This was today's installment from my "page a day" Someecards calendar. It made me chuckle, because after church on Sunday the kids and I went to Super Target, and a very chipper woman in a "Target tomato red" apron handed me a (weirdly tiny) reusable grocery sack  - Target tomato red, of course - containing samples of (dubiously) Earth-friendly products and a coupon booklet, all in honor of Earth Week. In the booklet was - wait for it - this coupon for a dollar off of Method hand soap:


Is it just me, or does the woman in the calendar illustration look like Princess Leia dressed for a Downton Abbey viewing party?  Possibly displaying jazz hands?


Happy Earth Day, peeps!

Monday, April 15, 2013

PJ McSwagger

I have certain distinct - um - urban contemporary - tendencies.  R&B and old school funk:  pretty much the soundtrack of my life, for as long as I can remember, since I was old enough to express my own musical preferences.  Rap got added into the mix early on - like, The Sugarhill Gang early.  Senior year, my parents had to essentially ground me to keep me from going to a Public Enemy concert - which was kind of hypocritical, given that I get my hood-rat-adjacent tendencies (including my mad booty-shaking skills) from my mother.

PJ also inherited the gene.  For lack of a better description, he is my little funk-soul brother, trapped in a freckle-faced body.

On Saturday, I thanked him for bringing me my phone when it was ringing in another room, and he responded, "No probs, Moms.  That's just how I roll."

On Sunday, I caught him singing Jaheim.   Specifically, Jaheim's "Ain't Leaving Without You":

You're moving them hips
Killing me with every dip, girl
You about to get a tip
Do it girl
Worst that goes down is you turn me down
But, this time around, I got it, shorty
Hey, how you doin'?
Baby, what you getting into?
I don't know what your name is
Or who you came with
But, I ain't leaving without you

Because eight year-olds know the lyrics to obscure (but musically awesome) neo-soul songs.  (At least, eight year-olds in my house do.)

The Sunday before, during the children's service at our church (thankfully, because the children's service is kinda loud and chaotic), the children's minister announced that little pint-sized ushers would be coming 'round to take up the collection.  Prompting my child to blurt out;


in his best Ludacris voice.

There was a little dance step involved.

And, earlier this evening, I was handed (by his somewhat amused father) what appears to be the first draft of a rap:

I said you were cool
I was kidding - 'cause you pee in pools
Hey, ace
Guess what?
Yo face
By the way
You don't have a base
Just a place
I'm on your case 
By the way, Mom's pretty
You don't have a job in the city
You work on a farm
Bet chickens are your alarm

Okay, so it's a work in progress.  But it amused me.

I love my little funk soul brother.