Thursday, August 31, 2006

Movie Quote Monday

First, Colleen, the winner of last week's contest, can find her prize here. While she is joyfully occupied with licking her computer screen, let's figure out this week's quote (and hope that she doesn't blurt out the answer in 10 seconds...AGAIN):

"I'm not gay!"

"What was Streisand's eighth album?"

"Uh, 'Color Me Barbra.' "


"Everybody knows that!"

"Everyone where? The Little Gay Bar on the Prairie?"


Tomorrow is Drew's first day of school, so if I'm absent for several days it's because me and the Jay-bird are busy carousing the town Thelma & Louise-style. Wheeeeee!!!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

We are finally members of the 21st century

So, guess what? Paul and I recently purchased a snazzy new telephone with caller I.D.! Okay, what actually happened was our 11-year-old telephone bit the big one (yet another electronic item to break down in our home), and we then had no choice but to buy a new one. And it's pretty much impossible to find a new phone without caller I.D., because apparently it's the new "thing" and all the cool kids have it.

Up until now, I had thought that the occasional "Don't you have caller I.D.?" I got from family and friends was a bit odd. No, we don't have caller I.D. And we don't have a helipad in our backyard, either. Shoot us. I mean, come on. What's the big deal about answering the phone and inquiring, "Hello?" and waiting until the person answers to find out who it is? These high-tech gadgets can be so ridiculous. And it's so rude to screen calls, anyway.

Also, I had been cursing my sister (sorry, Jan!) for years because I have to "unblock" my phone number by dialing *82 before dialing her number because "I'm sorry. The person you are trying to reach does not accept private calls." Well, I work from home and pardon ME if I don't want the technologically advanced and potentially irate people I am calling to see my phone number and call me back. Each time I call my sister, I forget to dial *82 first and I have to listen to that stupid recording and then redial. And each time, I sigh disgustedly and say..."Oh, bother!" Or something like that.

Actually, even my parents have blocked their number, because, as my mother said, "We don't like the idea of people knowing that we're calling." Um, okay. Have I mentioned that my parents also have caller I.D.? Now that's just messed up.

Anyway. Now? This is 21st Century Karen:

Walks to phone and waits...aaaaaand BINGO! Smith, John! I do NOT want to talk to John Smith! I do not know who he is! I am not answering the phone! *cackles evilly*

Walks to phone and waits...aaaaaand BINGO! It's the dentist! Probably calling to confirm an appointment! *wracks brain to remember who's due for a cleaning* Oh! "Paul! You have to answer this! It's for you!" Whew. Close call.

Walks to phone and waits...aaaaand BINGO! It's my friend, Kathy!
Me: "Hello, KATHY! HA HA! I know it's you!"
Kathy: "Are you drunk?"
Me: "HA HA! I have caller I.D. now! So I knew it was you, see? Isn't that rad? I mean, cool?"
Kathy: "Um, yeah, okay. Anyway..." *rolls eyes* (which I know because I HAVE CALLER I.D.!)

Walks to phone and waits...aaaaand... What the...? Private caller?! So how do I know who it is? Who is this JERK with the blocked number??

[opts to answer phone the old-fashioned way to see who the hell is calling]
"Oh...hi, Mom!"

Well. She had better get used to dialing *82 before my number because today I'm calling the phone company to have private callers blocked.

Thought I wouldn't find a way to get back at you for not letting me do the overnight skate at Roll On America in 1982, Mom, didn't you? Hmph.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Movie Quote Monday...on a Tuesday

Shamelessly stolen from Colleen's blog, and just for fun:

"Those aren't pillows!"

First one to guess correctly gets M&Ms.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

He lurves me!

Jason has recently decided that I am his absolute favorite person in the world. First, let me just say that I am okay with this. More than okay, even. In fact, I think it's absolutely adorable and I hope he always feels that way. Well, until he gets married. Because that "mama's boy" thing is really unattractive.

So, every morning, I hear Jason shutting off his night light and banging his door open in enthusiasm. Then I hear the little footsteps on the rug as he enters our bedroom, blue blankie in tow. He walks to my side of the bed and stands with his face within inches of mine. I open my eyes to this cute little face and a huge smile (how can someone wake up that happy every morning??). Then he climbs into bed with me, curls up with his blanket, snuggles into my arms, and makes yummy noises. So sweet!

After saying "I love you" to me in English, Spanish, sign language, and through physical demonstration ("thiiiiiiiiiiiis much!" with arms stretched as far as they can go and face turning red from the strain), he says, "Mommy, can we go downstairs now?" Well, of course! It's 5:50 a.m., so I must hurry to begin my morning of coffee-swilling and chair-sitting! As soon as my foot hits the bottom stair, a small boy is suddenly wrapped around my right leg. I determinedly drag the leg/boy into the kitchen because I NEED CAFFEINE. I have mastered the coffee-making whilst dealing with the 35-lb. growth. I just leave the offending leg outstretched and hop a bit when necessary. More yummy noises from down below. So cute!

After peeling off little arms and legs, I finally get to sit in a chair and sip my coffee. Exactly 2.4 seconds after my first sip, he asks me, "Mommy, can I sit on your lap? Please?" This is the part where my nice, hot cup of coffee begins its rapid descent into Chillville. But how can I say no to him? He's so darn CUTE! He sits on my lap and wraps my arms around him tightly and says, "Squeeze me tiiiiight!" Then I'm usually treated to a string of niceties, like "Mommy, you are my bestest girl!" or "I will ALWAYS love you!" or, simply, "I love you so-so-so, so-so-so, so-so-so (oh my God when is it going to stop?), so-so-so, so-so-so MUCH!" And still I think it's adorable! Although a bit over the top.

This lovey-dovey behavior continues throughout the day. I sit down to put his socks on, and he insists he has to walk to the other side of the room first, put two little fingers up near his head to make "horns," digs at the floor with one tiny foot, and comes charging at me full force and knocks me over in a big "Jay Hug." He brings me things, like pencils and raisins and cracker crumbs from the floor. Why? "Because I love you!" he says, and gives me a kiss on the cheek. Later, I make him lunch with him hanging on my leg. After lunch ("Mommy, you are a great cooker! These hotdogs are super-good!"), we go outside and he picks me weeds flowers, which he hands to me and says, "These are for you, Mommy! You are the bestest mommy in the whole world!" He keeps his arm around me if we're walking and must climb on my lap if I sit down. Love! It!

However, around suppertime, I'm beginning to feel a bit touched-out. Even a teeny bit claustrophobic-like. Okay, smothered. At this point, I find myself saying odd things like, "Daddy will be home soon and he will give you lots of hugs! Won't that be nice?" or "How about you sit by yourself for a little while and watch t.v. while I make supper, and then we'll sit together and read a book (maybe Chicken Licken because that's a surefire mood killer)!" And he agrees, but occasionally he will shout out something endearing in the meantime to remind me that he still, in fact, loves me. A lot! Sometimes he pops into the kitchen to "visit" and I get this: "Mommy, I will never, ever, EVER leave you!" while clinging to my apron strings waist.

And then I am frightened.

This is usually the point where I fire up the Roomba.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Celebrity Smackdown

The top five celebrity tidbits that have enthralled me and/or disgusted me this week:

1. Paramount Pictures supposedly dumped Tom Cruise's film production company because of his "erratic" offscreen behavior. This news made me so happy that I must certainly be evil. However, Tom's production partner reportedly shot back a retort that TOM dumped THEM. Which is the Hollywood equivalent of I-know-you-are-but-what-am-I. In any case, I hope Tom doesn't find this all to be a bit...depressing. *gasp!* Maybe he should start stocking up on vitamins just in case.

2. Have I heard the song that goes along with this picture? No. Do I care? Um, no. Will I be clicking on this link all day whenever I feel the need for a jolt of joy? Hell to the yeah. Don't judge me. I love me some Justin.

3. Is Patrick Dempsey getting too big for his britches? "Said the [sic] obviously male [sic] source: 'Patrick may be a big part of the show, but it's not his show.' " Uh, as far as the majority of the female population is concerned, yes, it is. Show him the money!

4. This one calls for subcategories:

(a) Please tell me that Jessica Simpson and Dane Cook are not an item. Oh, Dane, please say this is just part of your new material...? You're going to segue into a Chicken of the Sea joke now, right? Right??

(b) Clicking on the "size" link in the lower right hand corner of the screen makes the picture quality a bit better. And it makes Britney's cleavage and belly a little less in-your-face, which alleviates the agida.

(c) Whoever said "You suck!" while Britney was talking deserves a Teen Choice Award.

(d) KFed's performance? (chorus) Some white trash flavor mixed with a little bit of Oh. My. God.

5. Supposedly, you can never be too rich or too thin. Until you can grate a block of Parmigiano Reggiano on your chest, that is.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

The one where I suck as a friend.

So, Paul and I had yet another date -- the second weekend in a row! We're on a roll! The way we justify it is that we haven't been able to take a real vacation this summer, so we deserve to spend a little extra money. That, and the fact that the 11:15 a.m. showing of Talladega Nights was only five dollars.

This is also the second weekend in a row that we hated the movie we chose. I know, I know. Commence the throwing of the rotten produce. Everything I've heard about this movie has been positive, particularly from readers of this blog. But I have to admit I felt like I was watching a bizarre Saturday Night Live skit that just plain wasn't working FOR TWO HOURS. After rolling our eyes at each other in disgust for the tenth time in five minutes, Paul and I whispered to each other, in unison, "Wanna go?" And we bolted out of the theater, screaming, "I want to go FAST!"* After our escape, we tapped our fists together and exclaimed, "SHAKE AND BAKE, BABY!!!"** And then we went to get a pizza.

It soon became apparent that we had chosen the wrong restaurant. As soon as we sat down in our booth, Paul ducked for cover and started talking softly with his chin practically resting on the table. I suddenly realized that either (a) Paul had seen some Suspicious Activity at the bar, such as someone opening a bottle of white zinfandel (with plans to SERVE it to someone who might - gasp! - DRINK it!), or (b) our afternoon date was in danger of being interrupted by Friends We Haven't Seen for Awhile. I immediately put on a baseball cap and these. And we spent the first half of our meal talking on the down low, hands covering the sides of our faces, and side-glancing at the table where our friends were seated. It's not that we don't like these friends, it's just that we're really stingy with our time. We figured we went there to spend some time together, and we weren't about to get sucked into a conversation with people we haven't talked to in awhile and miss out on our precious alone time. Basically, we're snobs.

Finally, the friends left. (Can I still call them friends at this point? Probably not.) Exactly five minutes later, another long-lost friend came in with her husband and kids. How freaking annoying is THAT? More ducking. More inconspicuous disguises. Again with the shifty-eyed conversations. Twice they got up to go to the restroom and had to walk past our table. TWICE. At these nerve-wracking moments, I would start talking loudly in Spanish so as to be even more convincing that of course they shouldn't bother looking in our direction because they don't know anyone who speaks Spanish! The first time one of them went by, I nervously spouted, ¿Cuya idea era de venir a este restaurante?*** The second time, I loudly stated, ¡Maldígale para sugerir la pizza!**** It was not a relaxing lunch. It was very, very tense.

Why am I like this? I don't know when it happened that I became a snob, but I've noticed that over the years the joy of seeing old friends in public places has been replaced with horror and disgust. The nerve of these people, showing up in places where I want to be. Infringing on my private time. Bastards, all of them.

I'm just kidding, though. It really depends on my mood, whether I'm happy to encounter old acquaintances or not. Most of the time I'm quite pleased and rather friendly! Really! Except for the times that I'm not.

I'm already showing signs of becoming a crotchety, bitter old woman, aren't I? Well, at least I know Paul is also showing signs of becoming a crotchety, bitter old man. So we can be crotchety and bitter together when we're old. Because Lord knows we will probably only have each other after this post.

*If you have not seen the movie, you will not get this.
**See above.
***"Whose idea was it to come to this restaurant?"
****"Damn you for wanting pizza!"

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Of clogged drains and rotting apples

I've been Googling my morning away, trying to find some natural remedy for clearing a clogged drain. I've been a Liquid Plumber girl for years, but I feel that I need to do my part in protecting the environment by finding a chemical-free solution. Oh, and the LP costs about $6 a bottle, so it's getting rather expensive. But the environmental thing is the main reason. Really.

Anyway, I am very excited about my find and feel the need to share it with the ENTIRE WORLD! Pour approximately half a cup of baking soda on the drain, and follow that with approximately half a cup of vinegar.* This will immediately foam! Wait approximately ten minutes and then pour approximately one tea kettle full (measurements are not exact) of boiling (or just very hot) water directly down the drain. Voila! Cheap, easy! And most importantly, of course, no chemicals involved!

*Apple cider vinegar is not recommended. I don't know anyone dumb enough to use it, of course, but I just thought I'd throw it out there for the stupid people. I'm sure there have to be some idiots out there who might try it if they didn't have any white vinegar. Or maybe even consider sherry vinegar or balsamic vinegar for a split second. I know! It's unbelievable how some people have absolutely no common sense. How could you not know that the bathroom will end up smelling like exactly what you poured down the drain? I mean...guh. C'mon, people.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

It goes a little something like this.

So! What do I have to do today? Oh, yes, I have to call the - "MOMMY!!! Can you help me wind up my yo-yo?"

Wind up the yo-yo. "Please go play, Jason. Mommy is busy."

Now where was I? Oh, I really should call the doctor about that mole because it has a weird shape and is getting bi- "NOOO NOOO NOOOOOOO!!! JASON STOP SIIIINNNGGGIIIIINNNGGG!!!"
*screech, screech, screech*

"Jason, stop singing! Drew is trying to watch Blue's Clues."


Place Drew in the corner for kicking. Wipe Jason's nose. Pat him reassuringly. "Don't worry, your brother is being punished. We do not kick!" Jason gives me a hug of gratitude for having his back.

Now, what do we need at the store again? Toilet paper? Or was it horseradish?, it was - "MOMMY!!! JASON KICKED ME WITH HIS FOOT AND HE HURT MY LEG!!! *screech, screech, screeeeeeeeccccchhh*

Place Jason in the corner and say, "I thought I said we DO NOT KICK! Did you like it when Drew kicked YOU?" Jason says, "No. But but but...he steered me wrong! He told me I could use the Magnadoodle and then he wouldn't let me use it and he steered me wrong, Mommy, he steered me WRONG...WAAAAAHHHHHH!!!" (Where on earth do they pick up these phrases?!)

"Drew, let Jason have a turn with the Magnadoodle!"

Where was I? Oh...maybe it was cheese that we needed? *gasp!* I think I left a candle burning in the kitchen and I forgot to turn off the gas on the - "MOMMY! DREW IS PEEING IN MY TONKA TRUCK!!!"

And we all died. The end.
Magnadoodle? $14.99. Tonka truck? $19.99. Being able to complete a thought without interruption? Priceless.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

I have the uglies.

Does this ever happen to you? You go to bed looking like yourself and you wake up seven hours later looking like you've spent many grueling years working on the plantation in the hot sun? Well, that's what happened to me yesterday. I shuffled into the bathroom, caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror, and screamed in horror. GAAAAAHHHHH!!! Where did those bags come from? Who drew those lines around my eyes and mouth?? And my hair is another story. It's been thinning and drooping for days now. Limp and lifeless. Blah, bland, flat. And I bet it would be really gray if not for the fact that it has instead turned an attractive blondish-brown over the years. (I know! I've been lucky!)

So, does this happen to anyone else? The overnight aging thing? No? Just me? I think it's stress related. Whenever I go through a period of time when I'm really anxious or upset about something, it seems to mess up my face and I can't stand to look at myself. And then, when the anxiety eases, I wake up one day and POOF! I look like myself again! (Read: the bags and lines are slightly a lot less noticeable.) And my hair is once again bouncy and lively. (And even blonder, I think!)

But then there are days when I'm happy and anxiety-free and something different happens.

They say you begin to look like the people you live with, but this is ridiculous.

So, this is my little family at a farm we visited this past weekend. The boys had lots of fun petting the animals, riding the ponies, and playing in the sprinkler park. Then, obviously we lost our minds from all of the outrageous FUN, and we painted beards on everyone's face (okay, not Paul's) and made total asses out of ourselves by asking a random person to take our picture. The woman didn't say much. She just gave us a quizzical look, took the picture, and handed the camera back. Clearly she has no sense of humor whatsoever. Or maybe she just doesn't like bearded folk.

Friday, August 11, 2006

It's baaa-aaaaack...

As some of you might remember, my Roomba bit the dust a couple of weeks ago. I just received a new one via UPS, and Jason is THRILLED that it is back! If you look closely at the picture, you will notice that in his rush out of the bathroom to save his toys from being "sucked up by that thing," he didn't quite have time to pull his pants all the way up before climbing onto the coffee table in fear. I've never seen those chubby little legs move so fast.

Just look at him, pleading with me. "Mommy, make it stop!!!" Okay, I'll admit it. I deliberately redirected the Roomba in Jason's direction a few times just so I could hear the scream and watch the dance of panic. I have clearly hit rock bottom in my quest for entertainment. But really, what is wrong with this child? He wasn't afraid of the defective Roomba I sent back. And this new one is the EXACT SAME model. (Did they send me the evil twin?)

Actually, I'm beginning to think the other Roomba's problems went far beyond a Failure to Charge. I think its mental condition was on unsteady ground from the very start. A touch of schizophroombia, perhaps. I had just assumed that it was supposed to wander aimlessly from room to room, going over the same area over and over again, until I would find myself yelling, "The dirt is GONE there, you dumb-ass! What about the rest of the damn room?!" In fact, I guess I can see why Jason developed a fear of the thing. He's used to hearing me talk to it as if it's a real member of the household. "Get away from there!" and "Man, you're stuck there AGAIN? Don't you ever LEARN?" and "Don't you go in that bathroom! Don't you DARE eat up my rug!" One time, I heard the thing struggling in the other room. I went to see what was going on and it was trying its darnedest to get in between the chair and the wall and it kept getting stuck and making a frantic squeal. ("There's dirt in there, by God, and it's my job to get it!") So, I scolded it. "How many times are you going to get stuck there before you realize that YOU! DON'T! FIT!"

Another strange thing was, it would often give off a cheerful series of beeps that indicated it was finished when half the room hadn't been touched. And it never, EVER, found its way back to its "home base" to recharge, a feature that is touted on the box. Well, it's just a robot, I reasoned. What do you expect?

But this one! This one gets the job done on a timely basis! No goofing off; no wandering aimlessly. It has intelligence! And determination! If I even dared to try to nudge it in a different direction with my foot, it would not give in. "I. Am. Going. THIS. Way. Lady." And I backed down. (And I NEVER back down. Just ask Paul.) And when it finished the entire first floor, it found its way back to its charging base and announced its arrival with a triumphant, "Da-da-da-dah da-daaaaaah!" ("Charge!" It even has a sense of humor, people!)

How silly of me to endure two pregnancies that wrecked my body in too many ways to count, followed by two major surgeries, followed by thousands of hours of lost sleep and teething and potty training and cleaning up vomit in the middle of the night and Poopapalooza when all I really had to do to be fulfilled in life was drive to Target and fork over $280 for a household member who is self-sufficient, doesn't talk back, and cleans dirt instead of creating it. I mean, DUH.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

A trip to the circus and a strangely perfect day

Okay, the circus was actually Walmart. But there were rides and peanuts and smelly things!

I've noticed the dirty, chewing-gum-infested Flintstones car ride outside Walmart (and I always have to convince whichever child I have with me at the time that it's out of order), but I had never noticed that Walmart had a carousel in the entryway to the store. For only 50 cents, my child can have 30 seconds of nonstop fun! Which is only, let's see...almost 2 cents per second! The deals are unbelievable at Walmart! And it was such fun for Jason, the little two-seater carousel. (It looked almost like he was doing pirouettes.) He had a grimace grin on his face the entire time and exclaimed “I’m getting really dizzy!” “Wheeee!” over and over again! Unfortunately, the ride was a little too quick for Jay who had been trying to get off since Second One so he was very disappointed. Ah, well. He can always ride it again the next time we go shopping. We’ll just have to make sure we leave the house 30 seconds earlier to allow enough time for shopping.

After Jason's nausea subsided, we went inside and he immediately spotted the candy aisle. “Mommy, can I get a treat?” “Well, of course!” said I, and then proceeded to read the ingredients list on the 537 varieties of candy (with Everyday Low Prices!). My kids are allergic to various things, so I have become an Expert Ingredients List Reader. So, I finally narrowed it down to two possibilities: gummy bears and Circus Peanuts. But I give the boys gummy-bear-type supplements every day (which I will plug here because they are so scrumpdillyicious and therefore easy to administer to children), so gummy bears usually aren’t considered to be a treat by their standards. Jay opted for the Circus Peanuts. I felt sorry for the poor boy, because these things have to be the most disgusting idea for a candy EVER. Does anyone even buy them? That is, besides moms like me, who are desperate to find treats that only have ingredients like “sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, glucose, fructose, maltose, artificial flavoring, and artificial colors” in order to avoid the nasty allergens? And also, why have “peanut” in the name if the only thing “peanut” about them is the shape? They are ORANGE. And they taste like FAKE BANANA. And they have the texture of STALE MARSHMALLOWS. Yet Jason seemed to find them to be a tasty mid-morning treat. (Shhhh!)

Onward to the smelly things. Tell me, how can people be so filthy that they literally emit enough of an odor that it permeates the air throughout an entire store? No matter where I went, I smelled Stinky People and it was turning my stomach. Jay kept yelling, “I smell POOP!” People would turn to look at him, and then he’d laugh and jump around. See? There was even a clown at the circus.

So, eventually we ran into The Family That Doesn’t Bathe. (Not surprisingly, they were nowhere near the soap aisle nor the deodorant aisle.) I literally had to hold my breath as we walked through the fog of stench that surrounded them. WHAT would cause people to have such a horrific odor?? It was like they all rolled around in manure before dressing.

I gagged all the way to the checkout area, while the clown yelled, “I smell POOP!” a few more times because that is SO FUNNY when people turn to look at him and then give me a look of barely concealed disgust. I hissed at him, “If you don’t stop saying that, I will take away your Circus Peanuts!” He said, “I don’t want them anymore. They taste yucky!” (I guess it must’ve been the fifth one that finally convinced him.)

We finally escape to the parking lot where the air was a lot clearer, and I commented, “That was awful!” And Jason said, “Someone pooped in the store! That was funny!” (I can see how he would find poop to be humorous, given my reaction to it when I encounter it in odd places at home.)

So, today, in the hopes of spending some April-fresh quality time with Jason while Drew was at the last day of his summer program, we attended a children's event at the library. The librarian ran a science-related workshop with activities that centered around books. Despite the fact that Jason is taking Albuterol for asthma at the moment, which causes hyperactivity (oh, dear), he only monopolized the librarian's attention half of the time. So things went really well. He basically shot his arm up to answer questions, or to pose questions, or to make nonsensical comments every 20 seconds or so. The librarian was very patient. Even when Jason jumped up and led a conga line around the room for about five minutes before she could call order to the room again. And after all of that, we still got free M&M's, Chips Ahoy cookies, and there was a reporter there who took our picture for a local newspaper! This is fantastic because I was having a really good hair day and Jason’s clothes had no stains! (Okay, this is the only part of our great day that I'm lying about.)

And after the workshop – yes, there’s more! – we picked out some cute children's DVDs from the library to watch later, went out to lunch, ate some really good food (he actually ate something! at a restaurant!), and we even had a really cool waitress. We picked up Drew, who had “a wonderful day!” according to his instructor, and both boys are now sitting angelically in front of the t.v. watching the new DVDs, eating microwave popcorn, and sipping juice. I can hear myself breathe. And I swear I just saw a pig fly across the front yard.

Stay tuned for an upcoming story about how the roof fell in after I hit "Publish Post."

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

I need sleep.


Jason, fortunately, is a wonderful sleeper. He’s a Power Sleeper. He will go from giggling to snoring in about 2.5 seconds. And he’s out for the night.

Drew, on the other hand, is part Power Sleeper, part Broadway star. Sometimes, in the middle of the night, we will be awakened by him humming a tune and occasionally bursting into song. It used to be cute little children’s songs like The Itsy Bitsy Spider, sung at the top of his lungs, with some vibrato added to the last note (a.k.a. The Big Finish). But the other night, apparently, he was a cowboy. And on a steel horse he rides. And he’s wanted: dead or alive. And he even sings his own backup! “Wanted…” (“Waaan-teeed!”) “Dead or aliiiiiive…” Then, after The Big Finish: “Mix ninety-eight point fiiiiive!” (In case we were wondering exactly on which radio station he heard the song on that particular day.) And just when we think the show is over, we hear him segue into “Shakira, Shakira!” And I can only assume he pushes his pajama bottoms down over his hips and some belly-dancing takes place. I don’t know. All I know is I WANT QUIET!!! So, I stand outside his door and demand it. For fifteen minutes. Do you know how long fifteen minutes is? Well, it’s twice as long at 3 a.m. as it is at 3 p.m., I'll have you know.

Last night, it seems my brain was on Karaoke Alert. Paul came to bed around 1 a.m., and my first instinct when I felt someone getting into the bed was to immediately sit up and protest. “Oh, NO!!! Not again! Drew?!” and I start feeling around to see where he is. I find a head and pat the top to make the identification. Yes! The prickly buzz cut! It’s the Singing Sensation himself! What, am I going to get a serenade tonight?

I say: “Drew, go back to bed!”
Paul, in a stage whisper: “Karen! What’s wrong with you? It’s me! I’m just coming to bed!”

More patting, more proof. I know that head anywhere. He can’t fool me by calling me by my first name!

“DREW. Go back to bed right now.”
Paul: “Karen! It’s me...” then, sheepishly, “...your husband.”

Finally I comprehend that it is, in fact, Paul coming to bed. And Drew is asleep in his own bed. And we both burst into laughter.

Remember the days when you could go to sleep when you were exhausted (from a day of, oh, I don’t know, doing nothing that even vaguely resembles the rigors of parenting) and you’d sleep like a rock? Yeah, well, if you do, I certainly don't want to hear from you. Misery loves company.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

A lousy movie and a typical man

Paul and I had a date today. The kids were at the in-laws' for most of the day, so we decided to go to the movies and out for an early dinner. We saw Lady in the Water, and dare I say it was the most ridiculous film I've seen in a long time. I think I'd like to have some of what M. Night Shyamalan is smoking, just so I can briefly get a glimpse of what it's like to be that out of touch with reality. On second thought, if what he's smoking costs more than $7.50 a bone, it probably wouldn't be worth it. That's how bad this movie stunk.

But here's the part where Paul becomes the Essence of Typical Maleness.

We go into the restaurant next door to the theatre, and he, being the polite gentleman he is, opens the door for me. I, being the strong, independent woman that I am, proceed to open the next door into the restaurant by myself, and I hold the door open for him to enter. He, being the hopeless hornbag that he is, is busy holding the door open for the slinky sexpot who was heading toward the door with her boyfriend. The only problem is, I don't think he realized that she was beyond the Necessary Distance for Polite Door-Holding (she was, like, 50 yards away). But he apparently was so captivated by her high heels and swaggering walk and the boobs falling out of her top that he didn't notice this faux pas. He stood there like a doorman, back plastered to the open door, goofy smile on his face, while she sauntered up to the door. And she looks over at me, Mrs. Frumpy Housewife, struggling to hold the heavy inside door to the restaurant, sweat dripping from my brow, waiting for my husband to get his wits together and remember that he's, um, MARRIED, and then I see the wench girl toss me a lopsided, knowing grin, that said, "Your guy is checking me OUT! Nah-nah-na-nahh-nahhhhh!"

I LOVE that.

So, while I'm waiting for Paul to snap out of his trance, I'm all like, "Ahem! TODAY would be nice!" And Paul doesn't even hear me, he's so hormonally imbalanced. "Wha...hmmm...??" he mumbles, while not even looking at me.

Years ago, I would've made him pay all night for this behavior, but this time I just had to laugh. Men are so pathetic.

Sitting at the bar, I couldn't help but comment: "Wow, you were willing to hold the door a long time for that girl, huh?"
Paul: "What?! I mean, yeah, she was taking a long time to get to the door, so I just held it until she finally got there."
Me: "How nice of you to wait a full five minutes for her to get to the door."
Paul: "It was NOT five minutes..."
Me: "It was at least four."
Paul: "Well, I couldn't just let the door go. That would be rude!"
Me: "Did you see that I had opened the next door by myself and was holding it for you, waiting for you to take it?"
Paul: "No, I didn't, because I couldn't believe how long it was taking that girl to get to the door and I wasn't looking at you." (No way!)
Me: "Did you happen to notice the knowing smile she gave me as she approached the door?"
Paul: "No, I really wasn't looking at her face at all!"

I rest my case.

...and my other favorite topic.

Wearing my sneakers. "I'm going bowling, Mommy!" Of course, you don't wear your OWN shoes when you bowl. He's so smart! He also put on his backpack and packed a "lunchbox" (actually a bug collection box) with the essentials: a juice box and cookies.

He insisted he wanted to wear Paul's shorts and socks. AND he wanted to wear this to the grocery store. See what I have to deal with?
(Note: I did not let him.)

Practicing his come hither look.

Doing the buffalo stance. (Am I dating myself with that one...?)

Could you get angry at this face?
(If you close your eyes, it can be done.)

Fake love.
(In reality, he's trying to break Jason's neck.)

This must've been April 1st, because clearly they were pretending to get along. "April Fool's, Mommy!"

Saturday, August 05, 2006

A peek at one of my favorite topics of discussion...

Although Drew was given these pink glasses at the dentist, Jason has since adopted them. I think they are the funniest thing EVER. He knows that no matter how angry I am, if he puts these things on and flips up the lenses, I will smile. Damn it all, I WILL SMILE!

Plotting his next move.

Jason: Superhero.
(That is a cloth dinner napkin around his neck, secured with a chip clip.)

Jason, trying to describe the way he wants his haircut to come out.

Grandpa, obliging.
(Just kidding, Dad! You give the BEST haircuts! We especially appreciate the house calls!)

And finally, Jason, after finding out that Chicken Licken had Sucky Lucky.
(He decided on a lollipop instead of marshmallows to cheer himself up.)

Stay tuned for a peek at the Drewster, coming soon!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Parental double talk

I just wanted to inform all parents of the world -- just in case you all weren't aware -- that we are not supposed to spank our children, or yell at them (HA!), or tell them they are "bad." And it is our job to teach them not to hit (thus, the no spanking rule) and not to be a bully. And you should use discretion with allowing them to use toys that even vaguely resemble a weapon of any kind. And this includes water squirters. (I refuse to call them the G word! Because that is Very Bad! But I do not say this to my children because we should not say the word "bad"! Because that is...not good!) And many parents do not allow their children to play with toy swords, or even to shape their thumb and index finger into the shape of a...G word. Nowadays, kids get punished if they are caught playing "G and robbers" on the playground using their fingers as makeshift G's. So we all need to teach our children not to play this way because it is completely unacceptable.

In other news, Chicken Licken never got to tell the King that the sky was falling because HE WAS BRUTALLY ATTACKED AND CANNIBALIZED BY FOXY LOXY. And that's okay! Because that is storytelling at its best! In fact, this book is clearly labeled "For beginning readers," because apparently it is a good idea to introduce the concept of murder at the age of five. And for those who have children who begin reading a bit earlier than others, you will be happy to know they can become aware of this important societal danger at the age of four.

The thing is, I remember "Chicken Licken" fondly. In fact, when I noticed the book mixed in with the 98,327 other children's books in my kids' stash, I was so excited! I grabbed the nearest child (who happened to be Jason) and insisted that we read it right away! And Jason was excited because he loves when people read books to him. So we got right down to business.

Let's see. The acorn falls on Chicken Licken's head, so he must tell the King that the sky is falling. On the way, he meets Henny Penny. And then Ducky Lucky. And Goosey Loosey and Turkey Lurkey. Oh, how Jason and I giggled at these funny names! It was all coming back to me now, those wonderful childhood memories!

So! They all become great friends and agree to go with Chicken Licken to inform the King about the sky situation. On the way, they meet Foxy Loxy (another funny name! more giggles!). Foxy Loxy offers to show them all the best way to get to the King's...residence (presumably a castle, but this fact is not clear). Instead, he leads them into his den, where his wife and kids are waiting for their dinner.

Me: "Jay, what do you think happens next?"
Jay smiles and says: "I think they invite them all over for supper and they eat lots of food, like hotdogs and marshmallows!"
Me: "You could be right!"

With much anticipation, Jason turns the page and I read: "The foxes gobbled up Chicken Licken, Henny Penny...Ducky Lu...what the...??" Jason's face went from happiness to horror, and I was dumbfounded. Why do I not remember this? More importantly, why do I specifically remember liking this book? Because, you see, this is how it ENDS. No one called 911 to try to head off this tragedy. Mel Gibson did not show up to save the day (probably because he was drunk). Nothing was done! Foxy Loxy and family gobbled up the group of new friends with the adorable names. The End. And at this point, I suppose it's our cue to say to the child, "That was a great story! Now go choose another book! How about 'Silence of the Lambs'?"

Jay, in horror: "Mommy, why did Foxy Loxy do that? Why did he eat them all??"
Me: "Because Foxy Loxy was b-...not a nice fox. And he wanted to feed his family."
Jay, curious now: "So, what this book is saying is that it's socially acceptable to lure groups of people to your house so that you can eat them for dinner?"
Me: "Apparently so. Want some marshmallows?"
Jay: "Okay!"

And this, my friends, is how Jeffrey Dahmer became twisted.