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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

2008-05-12 ... 11:17 a.m.


I had several days off from work recently, and I spent them pretending to be other people. One I spent pretending to be a stay-at-home mom---I did the drop-off line at school just like a real grown-up driver lady, I grocery shopped, I came home and put everything away and talked with the plumbers who have been mucking about in our basement.

(Despite the fact that they barely spoke English. These were the loneliest, chattiest plumbers in the universe! I was actually getting annoyed as I dashed about refrigerating the perishables/eating lunch/checking email, and they were lurking around the screen door asking me heavily-accented questions about the weather. One of them even knocked and said, "Come see what we pulled out of the sewer drain!" WOW, NO THANKS!)

Then I picked up Nora from school and we went to the dentist for her cleaning. The dentist gave us both more crap about Nora's nighttime finger-sucking habit and he actually made her cry, because she is very touchy on that topic. At the time I just nodded and blah blah'd about how we are working on it, but later I decided that no, this is bullshit. I cannot bring myself to care that Nora has her index finger in her mouth while she sleeps, and it is seriously not worth this kind of emotional trauma. Before the next cleaning I plan to call and tell him to STFU about the finger thing, at least in front of Nora---he can scold me privately if that is part of his Dentist Code or whatever but leave my kid alone. Orthodontia, here we come!

The other day off was when S. came to town and we pretended to be unemployed---long leisurely breakfast, comic book store, afternoon beer-drinking and a big plate of nachos. That is something I could easily get used to. Particularly if there were a hefty government zines-and-nachos stipend.


A dead finch appeared on our front stoop and of course I am all like BIRD FLU DOOM and Nora is all like OMG COOL. After a day one of our neighbors kicked it off into the bushes, which pissed me off, as it does not in my mind constitute dead bird DISPOSAL, more like dead bird DENIAL, but that is pretty hypocritical of me since I was not exactly rushing to handle the dead bird either. For days Nora asked if we could bury it, and for days I put her off while hoping that some carrion-loving creature or other, more civic-minded neighbor would get there first, but no luck. Finally I let her fetch a garden tool from the basement storeroom and dig a hole, and then we nudged the corpse, which by this time had half of its face eaten off by ants (Me: AHHHHH! Nora: WOW!), and rolled it into its shallow grave.

Nora patted down the dirt on top and said, "We should say something."

Me: What, about the dead bird? Like people do at cemeteries?
Nora: Yeah.
Me: Okay, go ahead.
Nora: No, you.
Me: Um. All right. Dead bird, we don't know why you died, but, uh, we hope you had a nice life. And your body is now in the earth and can help grow flowers and stuff.

[moment of silence]

Nora [cheerfully]: Rot quickly!

It was the exact same tone one would use for "have a good day!" or "drive safely!" Rot quickly!


1. We drive past the remnants of some kind of large gathering in Grant Park---portable toilets, tents, stages, barbecue trucks, etc.

Nora: What was that?
Me: I don't know. Some kind of festival.
Nora [quietly, to herself]: A festival of life forms.

2. Nora: I thought of the funniest name for a restaurant. Bobby's...Chicken...Restaurant.

3. I had the joy of being the designated driver for Saturday's karate class. A slight hangover, the smell of gym mats, and multiple five-year-olds scream-counting to 10 in Japanese? Hooray! I do like watching the class, however, because (if I may brag on karate for a moment) Nora is the best one. She is crazy-focused and she has amazing balance and she can actually kick or punch with just one limb at a time, as opposed to some of these other kids who frankly look like they are having a seizure every time they try a move.

That day's class included a boy who apparently was an "advanced white belt." I know this because he was being a total spaz, goofing off and not listening, and the instructor told him to shape up a few times, and each time he mentioned that the kid should set an example because he was the advanced white belt and all. Nora talked about him all the way home. Can you believe he was an advanced white belt? He couldn't even listen! Oh, she was disgusted. I tried to get her to lay off a bit, but no way. He had brought dishonor to her dojo and the injustice will not stand.


I leave for Vancouver on Saturday, so there is still time to send me your bar suggestions if you happen to be familiar with that area of Canada ("America's Hat"). Science publishing people can be rowdy as hell, so don't feel like you need to exclude the biker bars.

---mimi smartypants should be stored at room temperature and protected from heat and light.


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