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the latest waddle:

good morning, wordpress - 10:36 a.m. , 2009-07-03

elaborate murder attempt - 2:56 p.m. , 2009-07-01

building a tractor in the basement - 10:42 a.m. , 2009-06-19

ask no questions tell just a few lies - 3:17 p.m. , 2009-06-09

my long lasting flavor really lasts long - 1:10 p.m. , 2009-06-04

2005-02-15 ... 1:16 p.m.


1. There is a ballet dancer living in my building, and whenever I go down into the basement to get more wine from our Storage Room Full Of Wine And Other Junk But Mostly Wine, I invariably encounter a drying rack full of leotards. The leotards are not in my way at all, but for some reason seeing a passel of leotards and legwarmers and weird little shoulders-only sweaters drip-drying, as if the whole cast of Fame has shed their clothes for some appalling jazz-hands orgy, makes me irritated. Of course Dancer Person has every right to have her laundry in the common area, so I don't really know where I get off feeling piqued about it.

2. I was in the bathroom washing my hands when a woman came out of a stall and also started washing her hands, and she was washing her hands really loudly, making all these disgusting squishy squirty sounds on purpose with the soap, and was that necessary? Was it really? Are you off to perform surgery now, or are you just heading back to your desk?

3. I just finished reading My Kind of Place, and while some of the essays were good,* I was annoyed every time I picked up the book because I have a rule about author photos, and that is they should never be on the front cover. That just smells of Crappy Celebrity Autobiography to me. Susan Orlean loses even more points for ALSO having her photo on the back cover. Good god Susan! You're cute and all, but give it a rest! There is also one essay wherein Ms. Orlean lets it drop that she's a size two, and I just find that crass. I don't care if you are a size two or a size twenty-two, it adds nothing to the writing and I do not need to know. And if I did need to know, I certainly could have figured it out from the TWO GIANT PHOTOS.

*Except for the ones about Cuba. For some reason I don't find Cuba as interesting as everyone else seems to.

4. I hate it when I dream about celebrities or television. It makes me revert instantly to my college-age anarchist Adbusters-toting self, when I was full of rants about how popular culture has colonized the modern imagination like white settlers colonized the New World with smallpox blankets and tobacco, etc etc. I have mellowed a bit on that front, but I still get annoyed, particularly when the dreams feature celebrities that I actively dislike or barely notice. Last night the dream was that Tom Jones was playing a concert at a park near my house and I had brought Nora to see him (what?), and somehow we were in the front row, and he invited us backstage to meet his six-year-old daughter. So not only was it a celebrity dream, it was a pointless celebrity dream. Featuring a Welshman.

On the other hand, I also had a dream the same night that I was a really kick-ass skateboarder, so it kind of balanced out.


Like Hieronymus Bosch action figures.

And perverted, spicy tubers.

And Chinese fish wine.

And big shakeups at the Bureau of Camel Affairs!


It was a Friday night, and our dinner guests had gone home, and LT and I stayed up to finish the bottle of wine. Eventually he went to bed all sensible-like, and I said I would be there in a minute, as soon as I finished typing the fake outline of a fake short story that involves Rick Moody wrestling a giant squid, which is the sort of thing I do sometimes when I am drunk, which is why you are mentally canceling plans with me right now. Suddenly I heard wailing from the previously-sleeping Nora, and after a minute it became clear that she was not just going to roll over and go back to sleep, and in fact was becoming rather hysterical. So I went in there, and encountered Nora sitting up in bed sobbing, which was pretty heartbreaking, and she babbled something that sounded like "sachs" and kept saying that she was scared of it. Scared of what? Socks? No, not socks. Sod? Saks (Fifth Avenue)? Saag paneer? Nope. Finally I stopped trying to parse it and just started repeating it in the negative, trying to match her inflection the best I could, there's no sachs here, nope, no sachs, just Nora's bed and Nora's Purple Dog and Nora's mommy. For some reason I feel slightly guilty about this, as if there is something shady about choosing comfort over understanding. Which there isn't, of course. And nightmares are all about the breakdown of referentiality anyway, so a coherent exchange of signifiers between tipsy tired me and crying frightened Nora, way past midnight, was probably too much to ask. Just patting, and kissing, and the refutation of sachs. Whatever those are.


Nora (pointing at a picture of a bearded Iraqi dude in the newspaper): Beard!
Me: Yes, that man has a beard.
Nora (stroking her chin): Beard for Nora!
Me: Does Nora want a beard?
Nora: (nods)
Me: What kind of beard do you want? Do you want a long beard or a short beard?
Nora: Long beard! Short beard! (pause, thinking) TWO BEARDS!

That's kind of a good idea, actually---a businesslike beard for every day, and a ZZ Top-style beard for parties. Or a conservative, secular beard for the weekdays and a crazy bushy rabbinical beard for the Sabbath. If Nora will truly consent to wear a false beard, maybe I will dress her up like Abraham Lincoln for Halloween. Maybe I'll be Abraham Lincoln for Halloween too! And LT! The more Lincolns the merrier!


Rain came down in buckets on parade day so we skipped all that, but we did go out to dinner on the day itself. Silver Seafood was a delightful zoo, full of dressed-up* Chinese families enjoying the holiday, and Nora's little head was on a swivel trying to take it all in. The restaurant has a huge tank of lobsters. While LT was paying the check, I took Nora over to look at the lobsters ("yobsters," in her vernacular) and she kept insisting they needed a "treat," and mimed shaking a Pounce can while yelling "YOBSTERS! TREAT! COME GET TREAT!"

*There was even a baby in a tuxedo! LT joked, "I wonder if it's rented?" and we decided probably not, as clothing-rental places would not enjoy an affirmative answer to the question, "Do you plan to poop in this garment?"


"rat poop"---1300 results
"rat shit"---4500 results (including a fairly awesome story on rat shit at Disneyland)
"rat feces"---5400 results
"rat droppings"---8830 results

I am unconvinced. "Rat droppings" sounds misleadingly benign---oh these? They're just droppings! No big deal! However, I am glad I did the rat-excrement research, because seeing the Google ad for, with the headline "College Girls Poop 4 You" (Just for you! Those girls in college! Pooping! Maybe they even skip class to do it!), really made my day.


When I write diary entries, sometimes I start by typing a few notes about stuff I might want to talk about. A terrifyingly large percentage of the time the spirit catches me and I fall down, or rather my crazy brain just goes somewhere else entirely and I do not even visit those topics. Here is the list of leftovers from today, maybe you can stay on task and give them their due.

1. well, that sounds like a good plan, you fucking racist
2. why David Byrne prefers to microwave his food
3. narrow escape from leg-humping shampoo girl!

---mimi smartypants needs some change for the jukebox.


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