Thursday, October 21, 2004

I'll be the first to admit I'm the fairest of fairweather fans, but... go Cards! Our bottom-of-the-twelfth, two-out homerun had me shrieking like an inebriated redneck. This morning I went tearing through loads of unfolded laundry to pull out anything red for the girls to wear.

Matilda, being nine, is starting to find her sense of style, and right now she's using me as a guide. That is, whatever I pick out for her to wear is not what she should be wearing. I tossed a red t-shirt at her as she came out of the shower. "Here, support your team!" I said.

She then gave me her requisite list of reasons why she should not wear that particular shirt: too long, too loose, too cold, too red.

"You have to wear that shirt," I told her. "It's your lucky shirt. The Cardinals have never lost a game when you've worn it."

Matilda looked at the shirt in her hand. "I've never worn this when they've played."

"Details," I said. "Look at me, I'm wearing my lucky red sweater.

"Mom, I don't think that sweater was very lucky for the person who started knitting it."


Anyway, not to end on an unrelated downer but this sort of thing ought to make intelligent people ill.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Were you ever a kid plagued by an itchy tag in the back of your shirt? I think we've all been there. Both girls find tags to be a real buzz-kill, but lately little Gert has become intent on hunting down and killing the tags, wherever they are.

Sorry, our debate viewing came this close to turning into a drinking game. Activist judges! Top one percent! Anyway.

If the tag thing is annoying during the day, it's intolerable at night. Every night we put on a fresh pair of pajamas, get Gert nicely tucked into bed, flip off the light, and just when we think she's dosing off, we hear this ear-piercing, horrified scream:


Usually this means I'm supposed to leap into action and grab the scissors, haul her shirt up by the scruff of her neck, expose the tag, and snip.

But lately the tags have become as predictable a bedtime stall as the third drink of water, the last-minute trip to the bathroom, the shadows that look like monsters or spiders, and the need for that one last kiss goodnight. I'd had enough with the tags.

On schedule last night, we got the call. I remained planted on the sofa. "I'll fix it in the morning," I assured her. "Just try to go to sleep."

Silence. Then I heard the quiet, resigned weeping. Feeling like crap, I got up to get the scissors. I stopped outside her door for a moment and heard that she was talking to herself.

Sob. "It will just be itchy forever and ever." Sob. "Mom never will fix it." Sob. "It will just be too itchy forever."

I think they write about people like me in fairy tales when they need a really terrible villain.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Today I have a serious day of copywriting ahead of me, which leaves no time for my usual routine of skipping around my favorite blogs, checking my email six times, rooting through Freecycle for today's finds, and feeling morose about the fact that I have nothing to blog about, which usually leads to me hugging myself and chanting affirmations about how creativity is a fragile spark and should not be thrown too soon to the harsh winds of scrutiny.

Today I will embrace the I-have-nothing-to-blog-about moroseness for what it truly is: an excuse to get some work done.

And in case you're not quite sold on how boring I am right now, I'll tell you the single most exciting thing happening in my life today. I'm eating dinner at McDonalds. There. Now everyone, please check your pity at the door and thanks for not laughing behind my back.

Monday, October 04, 2004

October marks this blog's 25th month of blog entries, and to celebrate the occasion I've decided to give everyone names.

Husband's name is Gary, as most of you already know.

Taking a cue from his very successful and popular blog, I think I'll stick with his names for the girls. They seem to fit.

Youngest shall hereafter be known as Gertrude.

Oldest is Matilda.

And my name, of course, is Penny Barcelona. Nice to meet you.

Now that the formalities are out of the way, we can proceed. The highlight of our weekend had to be running into Jeff and young MC at the grocery store Sunday afternoon. With our carts pulled up side-by-side, Gert and MC had a nice moment of toddler interaction.

I should add that Gert already has a rich fantasy life surrounding MC – in her mind they have gone to the zoo together, shared a fear of lions, exchanged laughs, and continually hung out. So Gertrude was all, hey man! Good to see ya! Check out my baby doll. Nice bib. I like your shoes. Your pants are sparkley. What are you doing for lunch later? I hope this place has free samples. Stores are cool, yeah? Okay, call me!

The second biggest event of the weekend was that the sound on our TV went out, necessitating an emergency TV purchase. It went down like this.

Me: I've just finished paying the bills. For some reason, we are not behind on the budget. In fact, we seem to be in fairly decent shape for once!

Gary: Shut up! They'll hear you!

Me: Who will hear me? What?

TV: What did you say? Oh! Crapping out now. Pppthbbbpthp.

Gary: Damn it! You can't crap out. You're only 1.5 years old. Your peer in the next room is pushing 20!

TV: Can't talk. Crapping.

TV from next room: Feeling a little iffy also…

So before the threats could continue, we quickly purchased a replacement set and restored the natural order of things. Yes, I realize we are being held hostage by the whims of our electronic media devices. There are worse things.