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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

2008-09-10 ... 2:26 p.m.


I fall in and out of love with a lot of things: public transportation, Chicago in general, modern literature, my job. The cycles are unpredictable and have nothing to do with hormones or seasons or blood alcohol level. Parenting is no exception. Of course I always love Nora, but that goopy in love thing is sometimes on and sometimes off. I remember long stretches of babyhood where I couldn't keep my hands off of her delicious little body, months of toddler-dom where my brain would cramp up at how ridiculously cute she was. And of course, equally long stretches where I just got on with the mundane tasks of daily life, thinking "yup, that's my kid, cool" without all the accompanying emotional goop.

The emotional goop is pretty tedious to read, but I just want to document its resurgence now that Ms. Thing is in school. Nora talks and talks and is so interesting and funny and beautiful and sometimes I just zone out and stare at her, thinking Holy shit she's amazing. She has learned about the color wheel (complete with letting me know which pairs of colors are "complementary" and "contrasting"---thanks Nora, you can make all decorating decisions from now on), she can sing "Happy Birthday" in French, and she completely understood a discussion at the family dinner table about how money is a social construct. It is the second week of kindergarten, people.

I don't mean to go on and on about how my kid's a genius, not least because I don't actually think she is. I am so much less interested in what she knows than I am in how open she is to knowing it. Of course all kids are curious but it is still impressive to me how easily she gets her mind around new ideas. Everything interests her and she wants to know more. And that's a large part of why I am all starry-eyed with lame-ass maternal wonderment these days---school seems to have turned on some crazy switch that leaves me in awe of what Nora could achieve, at least if her perseverance keeps pace with her potential.

It is also fun to keep her schedule near me at work so that I can follow along. I can note when she is about to finish "Literature" or "Science Lab" (kindergarten!) and move on to "Lunch." (Wait. I guess lunch doesn't need irony quotes.)


Can't stop listening to Stephen Malkmus, "Baby C'mon" and indie-rock oldie Knapsack, "Effortless"
Can't stop reading Absurdistan, Gary Shteyngart
Can't stop drinking Odwalla Juice, Citrus C Monster
Can't stop sniffling, snorfling, rubbing my eyes: fucking allergies
Can't stop obsessing over whether I should spend $200 to see David Byrne next month. Two hundred dollars! After all that kitchen expense! But David Byrne! But two hundred dollars, plus I've seen him before! But still! David Byrne!


Yesterday I went out at lunchtime to buy pants at the Gap store. I resent the Gap for generally existing and for having obnoxious advertising, but somehow they seem to have measured my exact body for one of their pants sizes, so it is the closest thing to a grab-and-go pants store that I have. I do try things on because I am a girl, and better safe than sorry, but more or less anything my size in the midget length will fit me perfectly.

The woman in front of me at the register was buying an absolute truckload of stuff. Her total was somewhere in the two-hundred-dollar range. (Two hundred dollars! She could have gone to see David Byrne!) She paid in cash, which was a little weird, and the last ten dollars or so were in change. She was digging around in the bottom of her purse for more coinage as she and the clerk slowly got closer to the total, and goddamn he was more patient about it than I could ever have been. I used to get irritated by fistfuls of change at the video store, and rentals there were only around two bucks. Although there was something "special" about working the day shift, when men would sometimes come in to rent porn and pay for it with change, so obviously looted from the family change jar, and then return the porn through the drop slot a mere hour or so after the rental time, so obviously needing to get it out of the house before someone came home from her shopping trip or lunch with "the girls." I always let those videos sit in the drop box for a spell before handling them. Let it cool off for a while. Let the lube residue dry.

Anyway, uh, new pants. Got a little off track there.


My new, kindergarten-inspired route to work takes me to a different train station, and there is always an elderly South Asian man standing outside it offering religious literature to commuters, and every day he gives me a big, betel-stained smile and asks, "Jesus?" Like it's a question. And I always answer "nah" or "no thanks" or "not today." Usually then I start smiling to myself as I step onto the train, because it amuses me to think of Jesus as a passed hors d'oeuvre at a fancy party. Caviar? Mini-crabcake? Goat cheese in phyllo pastry? Jesus? Oh do try the Jesus, it's simply delish. No, no, I couldn't possibly. Darling, fetch me some more champagne.

---mimi smartypants jammed the frequency.


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