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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

2005-04-26 ... 10:20 a.m.

I have very little to say today. But I do want to get it out there that "Rain King" is possibly the worst Sonic Youth song in their entire oeuvre, and that the following sentence makes me smile like a big crazy smilehead:

"We also cannot control the firmness of the Smurfs from tub to tub."

My route to the office bathroom takes me past the copier (and shredder, and sometimes people leave huge stacks of documents on the floor to shred later, with a sign saying "To Be Shredded" [by whom? Do we subcontract the actual shredding to poorly-paid midnight-shift workers?], and I admit that I always furtively crouch and flip through the To Be Shredded stack just in case there is anything really juicy in there).

Anyway, someone had left this post-it note on the copier, which was presumably instructions on the copying job:


If that is a "note to self," I really fear for the note-writer. I mean, wow. If it's a note to some subordinate, I guess that someone has attended and graduated from Micromanagement By Post-It Note 101, and I find it really special that information like the number of copies does not need to be specified, but "distribute copies" (to whom?) does, and that the order of the steps was spelled out in a numbered list. OH SHIT WHAT NOW! I TRIED TO STAPLE THE COPIES BEFORE I MADE THE COPIES OW! MY HAND!


Tantrums, no matter how minor-in-the-scheme-of-things, suck. Testing behavior sucks. Fussy moods, where NOOOOOOOO she doesn't want this but NOOOOOOOO she doesn't want that, also suck. The days when Nora does something so frustrating that I yell, and then feel guilty and teary about the yelling, and then read parenting books after she goes to bed and realize just how badly I fucked up by yelling, suck the most.

That said, I'm finding that all of the above are much easier to handle with a talking kid. Even in the midst of hiccup-sobs, Nora can often explain what her problem is. The other night, after I had committed the heinous sin of interrupting her nightly post-bath Dadaist spaz-fest* in order to wrestle her into pajamas, there was some wailing, but then there was also this great little summary:

"Nora sad. And. Mad. And. Angry. And. Tired."

Dang, girl. That's a lot of feelings.

*Like her mother, Nora suffers from Slumber Party Syndrome, where she gets very goofy just as it's time to go to bed. Sometimes it is a happy sort of goofy, with nonsense songs and dancing, which is either adorable or irritating, depending on my mood. Sometimes it is an overwrought two-year-old kind of goofy, with falling on the floor and yelling ("AHHHH! Nora can't walk!"), more yelling as a result of the falling on the floor ("AHHHH! Boo-boo! Need ice!"), and coughing fits as a result of all the yelling ("AHHHH! Coughing! Need medicine!") This shit, no matter how tiresome it is to work around and continue with hair-drying and pajama-donning, frankly cracks me up and I have to concentrate on not laughing and encouraging her Toddler Drama.


1. Nora and I spent much of Sunday afternoon cuddling in my bed. She covered me up, kissed me, told me good night, brought me Purple Dog ("You borrow him, Mommy. You borrow Purple."), and left the room over and over again, whereupon I had to then pretend to cry so she could come back in and tell me it's okay but that I had to go to sleep now. It is great when kids play out their own psychodramas so nakedly like that. I felt like I was living inside an early-childhood-education textbook.

Meltiest moment: after an under-covers ticklefight, both of us laughing and out of breath, my daughter looks over at me and says, "We're friends!"

Ah crap, Nora. Why you gotta keep poking at my cynical shell like that? Sniff.

2. Here is a photo of Nora multitasking by eating macaroni and cheese and talking to me on the phone.

LT both took and e-mailed this picture while I was still actually on the phone with Nora, which gave my afternoon a strange Parenting In The Postmodern Age flavor.


On the way to work, iPod shuffle presented me with Talking Heads' "Once In A Lifetime." When I heard its opening notes, I had several thoughts simultaneously:

a. It seems like "Once In A Lifetime" shows up during my commute quite often.
b. This is not really so surprising, as I have at least four versions of the song on the iPod.
c. On the other hand, it is a bit of a dark bitter coincidence that I hear "Once In A Lifetime" on the way to my corporate, family-supporting job each day.
d. On a third hand, even if I believed in such quasi-mystical crud, would the universe really choose to make a point about status and consumerism...through an iPod?


There are moments when one is hideously aware of race and class differences. Then there are moments when all that stuff gets smoothed out, if only temporarily. I love those smoothed-out moments, which may be why I am such a rabid fan of public transportation---it is just a little bit harder for cell-phone-yapping jerks to own their privilege when a homeless woman with small twigs in her hair is screaming how Jesus loved vegetables.

Yesterday I was riding home on a crowded train near four middle-aged, South Side black guys, all wearing various forms of blue-collar dress---work shirts, overalls, hard hats. They all seemed really tight with each other, and were having a loud, lively conversation about the old neighborhood, politics, basketball, and current events. The conversation turned to Michael Jackson, and how jaw-droppingly freakish and guilty he is, and there was some amusing speculation on exactly how long he would last in prison. Then:

Guy #1: I heard he was even messing with disabled kids.
Chorus Of Guys: No way! That's sick! Etc etc.
Guy #1: I mean, it's bad enough to be messing with kids. But messing with disabled kids? He be getting them out of their wheelchairs and shit? Touching their little bald cancer heads? Oh damn, it makes me sick.
Me [trying really, really hard not to laugh]: ...
Guy #1 [looking at me, also starting to laugh]: Am I right? Isn't that sick? Michael Jackson messing with disabled kids?
Me: Oh, it's sick. You got that right.
Guy #1: Disabled kids. Damn.

Then we were both laughing, for hard-to-explain reasons, and soon it was my stop and we exchanged first names and he called me "baby girl" and told me to have a good day, and I wished him the same, and it was just a nice little stranger-bonding moment. It is slightly unfortunate that the nice little stranger-bonding moment took place in the context of the alleged sexual abuse of disabled children by a batshit-insane hideously deformed skeleton of a multimillionaire, but there you go.

---mimi smartypants stopped, dropped, and rolled.


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