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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

2003-12-23 ... 2:54 p.m.


This Christmas, Nora's first, will be pretty over the top, since she is the first grandchild on both sides. I (verbally) wrestled my mother to the ground and would not let her up until she promised to show restraint when it came to presents, because at her age Nora is more likely to be fascinated by an empty cottage-cheese container or piece of junk mail than any big-ticket toys. LT and I debated whether we should even bother getting her anything from us or just let the grandparents handle the Christmas thing, but then we decided that she has to open at least one present at home, to kick off the family tradition and to prevent any blackmail should she learn of our delinquency later in life. So I went to this fantastic little toy store in Lincoln Square and picked her up a real, baby-sized snare drum (rock!) and a simple wooden puzzle with smiling shapes. If you ask me the trapezoid looks a little smug, but the other shapes are friendly enough.

It makes me a little sad to think that children's records are going the way of the dodo, being replaced by CDs or (eventually I'm sure) kiddie mp3 players, since I have such fond memories of my Fisher-Price record player. Nora has taken to scratching the vinyl of her highchair with her fingernails, giggling and kicking at the sounds she makes, and also to pushing a toy back and forth on the coffee table rhythmically, and I'm all like HELL YEAH DJ NORA IN THE HIZZOUSE SOMEONE GET THIS GIRL A TURNTABLE. Would not a sturdy plastic baby dual-deck just be the best thing ever? Crossfading the nursery rhymes, scratching the heck out of the Sesame Street records, raise your hands in the air for Mixmaster Mashed Banana.


LT and I both have minor upper respiratory infections. He mostly seems to be self-medicating with bourbon, and me with denial, but we have been dipping into our stash of over-the-counter medications occasionally. He had a bag of menthol cough drops on his nightstand yesterday, and as I was gathering up laundry I noticed that the bag made various claims about how the drops soothed your throat, including: "Makes Nasal Passages Feel Cooler." Is this really a problem for people? Warm and/or dorky nasal passages? It never has been for me but maybe I have not been paying attention.


I found this in my little notebook the other day, from earlier this year: "Gi-'wo-ni-'sv e-qua a-li-he-li-s-di u-nv-di-ga-du-nv wa-ga ga-wo-ni-s-gv" means "I talk the big, happy cheese cow talk" in Cherokee. I cannot remember why I wrote it down or how I learned it, but maybe it will be of use to you.

Did you know that there are Star Wars NOVELS? Has anyone read them? Is there anything new to say about the characters from the movie? Or maybe the Star Wars novels are sweeping intergenerational family sagas by this point. A series of Star Wars novels in the style of Faulkner would work, I think: "The Force, being nebulous, never heard felt smelled seen, is with you, if that indeed is you, metamorphed like a butterfly from some transubstantial swamp." Plus the whole father thing. Or if Raymond Carver were alive, perhaps he could crank out a Star Wars novel or two:

"These are not the droids you're looking for," he said.
Shit. He was right. I poured scotch, drank some of it.


(a) Crime spree.

(b) Lunch with Archer Prewitt.

(c) Ride a custom-made adult-size Green Machine down the Lake Shore Drive bike path.

(d) Relax in the company of family and friends, eat good food, laugh a lot.

(e) Gather a bunch of those electroclash dorks in a room, and say "Why dost thou listen to disco?" When they say, "It's not really disco, it just pays homage to disco blah blah," go berserk and start stabbing them with their own pointy shoes, yelling, "Asswipe! Thou listenth to disco! Thou art a pretentious douchebag with no musical taste or mind of thy own! Admit it!" Until they cry.

(f) Read the new books I hope I will be getting for Christmas all day. Go out to dinner with LT and Nora, then hand her off and hit the bars for a few hours to try and remember what it's like. Go home, tiptoe in, watch my girl sleep, hope the Schlitz-stench does not wake her up or give her bad dreams.

Maybe I can have Birthday Week and do all of the above. Damn these holiday birthdays. Everyone is always too fatigued from the eggnog and family-aggravation to go out and cause trouble with me.


The grass was sprinkled with Tater Tots and a piece of green parachute fabric billowed absolutely silently over the whole scene, and all was quiet like a bad art-student film.


So the other night I am giving Nora her bottle and rocking her to sleep, and she is waving bye-bye the entire time the way she has been lately (bye-bye consciousness!), and I could not stop thinking. The thing that I was thinking was this:


A lot of paperwork, a few miles of red tape, the intricate mysteries of a foreign bureaucracy, some magic legal words, and I am the forever mommy of a tiny, stranger-until-two-months-ago, person, who has already had an amazing life and circumstances, and it is all so very improbable but also so strangely natural. I feel like I was not meant to adopt "a Chinese orphan girl" but was waiting for Nora specifically. She's the one I rock to sleep, she's the one I'd open a vein for, she's the one who makes me laugh my head off on a daily basis, she's the one who is lovely and perfect and wholly original. She's the one.

---mimi smartypants is a little emotionally fragile right now.


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