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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

2007-04-30 ... 2:15 p.m.


I finally gave in to the trendiness of, uhhh...2005, and read Perfect Madness. This book got the high score in category: Number Of Times I Can Say "What The Hell Is She TALKING About" In One Reading Session. What the hell was Judith Warner talking about? She postulates that there is a problem. This problem (although anecdotally I don't know anyone who has it) is that rich and privileged mothers work themselves into a frenzy of anxiety over the very desperate problems of parenting. Supposedly, this is not because they are crazy bitches with nothing better to do, but because our society is all messed up regarding the all-or-nothing nature of work, the lack of good health care and schools, and the cultural emphasis on being 100% available to your kid's every emotional and physical need. Those things certainly do suck, but they suck a rather dramatic amount less for the women interviewed in the book, who are unanimously well-off and well-educated. Sorry, but I just can't link up the stories about slaving all night over amazing homemade cupcakes and juggling the soccer schedules with the lack of societal support for good day care. If you have the luxury to fret about the former, chances are you don't have many that problems with the latter.

In my crabby opinion, mothers who over-parent are likely to be (a) control freaks or (b) hurt and angry about their own (real or perceived) lack of opportunities/support/love, and thus overcompensating by trying to give their children everything. Either way, the ball lands in the "crazy bitches" court and not the "somehow damaged by our modern age" court. I mean, please: even crazy bitches deserve a little bit of credit for self-determination.

Speaking of crazy, during one of these recent beautiful spring days I was on a bench at the playground, surrounded by Orthodox families and watching Nora party in the sandbox. She was really going to town, and I had allowed her to use the water fountain to fill up her pail several times, so basically my girl was up to her elbows in goopy, muddy sand. Every other mom was sort of giving me the sideways fisheye, and I even overheard some of them tell their yarmulke'd and ankle-length-skirted offspring not to get "too dirty." With the unspoken follow-up being, "like that grubby little girl." I ask you: are children not washable? Does OxyClean not exist? Are we not at the freaking playground? You would think, after eighteen children and a belief in letting G_d provide, that the Orthodox would be all chill about the dirt thing, but I guess not.

At one point Nora had made a huge bucket full of murky muck and was stirring it with a stick. She was narrating her process the way she does (every minute of the day), and I was really only half-listening. If that.

Nora: You stir it like this, and then you put the stick up and down like this. Be careful not to take the stick out all the way. Then, stir it in the other direction, very slowly. Then, you take it out, smoothly, and what do you have? Mommy, do you know what?
Me: Huh? What?

Oh ho ho. You got me, kid. That was a good one.


A friend challenged me to admit something truly embarrassing on my diary. I don't remember why. We were probably drunk. I tried to make the argument that my whole diary is embarrassing, but the challenge for something specific stuck with me, so here goes. Sometimes I am tempted to try and hump my Domo-kun. He just seems like the perfect size, shape, and density for such a thing. But I can't quite bring myself to go for it, because the idea of finishing, bringing domo-kun back up to pillow level, and seeing that RRRRRRRAAARRR face is just too weird. Was it good for you, Domo-kun? Let's cuddle. Also, someone once told me that there is quite an eBay market for stuffed Domo-kuns and now that factoid pops into my head each time I glance at mine lustfully. See I told you, embarrassing. It probably would be less embarrassing to actually hump Domo-kun than it is to detail my tortured thought process about why I don't. I now feel meta-humiliated! Friend, you owe me a beer.


1. I saw this headline and thought, "Wait, are we moving?" Start filling out those change-of-address cards now, folks.

2. I think I could be friends with these girls:

Tina Fey: A truck hauling two thousand cases of beer in Toronto, Canada flipped over Wednesday and unleashed a sea of alcohol onto the country's busiest highway.
Amy Poehler: Woo-hoo! You guys, [singing] party on the highway!
Tina Fey: Well, it's not- it's not really a party, just beer spilled all over the road—
Amy Poehler: Spilled beer on the road! Who’s comin' with me?
Tina Fey: It's- it's not that fun! Just, like, the bottles broken, the beer just, you know, was in the dirt—
Amy Poehler: Yeah! I'm gonna drink beer dirt in Canada!
Tina Fey: All right, sorry.
Amy Poehler: Party highway!
Tina Fey: It's not a party!
Amy Poehler: [pauses] If you come, it's a party!
Tina Fey: All right, I'll go. But this is the last time that I suck beer out of dirt with you.


We went to Milwaukee this weekend. On the way there we were laughing about a store sign that said BEER and MEAT were available.

Me: I would just take beer, I don't want meat.
Nora: They will bring you meat anyway!
Me: No! I will say, "Just beer, please!"
Nora: I'm sorry, they will bring you the meat. They don't understand you. They speak another language.

I am pretty sure this exact scenario happened to me in Yemen.

I did not have trouble with the Milwaukee language barrier, but things are indeed a little different up there. LT, bless him, stayed at the hotel with a sleeping Nora (girlfriend got WORN OUT by the awesome Children's Museum) while my friend and I went out drinking. There are at least three different Milwaukee bars that are pretty much exactly like Goldstar except cleaner, brighter, more smiley, and with higher ceilings. At one place I waited for the bathroom and a girl came out and told me, "I have to warn you, there's no more hand towels in there," with a look of great Friendly Concern For My Welfare. Jesus, no hand towels? This is what constitutes a bar-bathroom crisis in Milwaukee? Man oh man.

---mimi smartypants is made of sturdier stuff.


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