Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Text Heard 'Round KC...

Apparently the text message I sent Scott yesterday is "the hit of the convention."  Yes, he shared a text with, apparently, anyone who will listen.  What was this text that has made it the Holy Grail of texts?  You tell me why he's been sharing it with everyone he sees...

"Dave H. has steamer at Expo. (xxx) xxx-xxxx.  Kids had good day.  Ultrasound tech saw my brain thru my vaj and Tess did squirt on the floor.  Chicks good."

I thought this was a completely thorough run-down of the day in 160 characters or less.  Let me break it down for you:
  1. Dave H. has steamer at Expo.  Someone called the house with info Scott needed at his convention (they accidentally put our home number on the contact sheet, so I answered several calls from people calling him in Kansas City while they were in Kansas City and likely only two rooms away from him at the convention center). 
  2. Kids had good day.  Well, that's pretty clear, I think.
  3. Ultrasound tech saw my brain thru my vaj  I had a very complete pelvic ultrasound today to see if anything jumped out as a reason why we are currently infertile.  
  4. and Tess did squirt on the floor.  One of the dogs had some diarrhea this morning and I was concerned about her pooping on the floor when I was at work.  For good reason.
  5. Chicks good.  The 25 chicks living in our basement are all still alive, cute, and doing a great job eating, sleeping, and pooping.
And now everyone on the USITT conference commission knows all of that about my day yesterday, too.  Maybe it is his revenge for me blogging?? 

Monday, March 29, 2010

You Want It, You Got It

My husband has a freakish love of all things musical theatre.  I don't.  Oh, sure I have done plenty of musicals, but I don't really have the voice of a soloist, so you'll generally find me in the chorus -- which is fine by me, most of the time, the leads don't get to dance and I like to dance.  given the choice, I'd rather do a play than a musical any day.

Can I admit to very likely being the only Midwestern theatre aficionado who has never seen Phantom of the Opera, no have I listened to the entire soundtrack?  Is that legal?  Go ahead... call me a theatre snob.  I'll likely agree with you.

Why is any of this relevant?  My darling husband has a brand new darling favorite TV show.  Oh, yes, I put up with him through his obscenely long Kids in the Hall period.  I tolerate his Chapelle Show compulsion.  I am co-dependent to his The Simpsons addiction.  And I full-on enjoy his The Office fix.

But can I support his current Glee love?  I dunno...  I think it has worn it's welcome.  I think that I need to stage an intervention because now he has got my children conspiring against me, requesting to hear the soundtrack over and over again.  It just goes on, and on, and on, and on....

OK -- I will say that Jane Lynch makes the show.  The rest of the characters?  Well, I can't seem to muster up any sympathy for them.  I don't like them, and not in a good way.  I get tired of the contrivances -- what teen in this day and age is seriously so stupid to believe he fathered a child from hot-tub sperm?  The idiocy is astounding.

The show doesn't go quite far enough to be farce, isn't smart enough to be intellectual humor, and is overripe with twenty-somethings playing teen-somethings belting out songs like they're auditioning for American Idol every day.  I think Simon would agree with me when I say STOP OVER-SINGING.  Just 'cuz you can sing loud doesn't mean you have to -- and that means you, miss Lea Michele.  

Perhaps it is my present crotchety mood, but I simply cannot listen to Matthew Morrison getting his rap on in "Bust a Move" one more time. I'm not Defying Gravity right now and I don't Need Somebody to LoveI Can't Fight this Feeling Any Longer --  I think I'm gonna bust a disc... but You Can't Always Get What You Want, so it's going to keep spinning until the kids grow as weary of it as I am.  Sigh...

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Pop Quiz: Answer

These are Buff Orpington chicks.  They are currently living in a brooder box in our basement.  There are 25 of them, half of which will become layers, the other half will be broilers when they reach 4-5 pounds.  Yes, it's official -- I AM living in Green Acres...

Friday, March 26, 2010

Pop Quiz!

1.  What is a buff Orpington?

2.  Why do I have 25 of them in my basement?

Stay tuned for results... and pictures...  and stories...

Stuffed with Sawdust and Leaking Sand

I am so darn tired.  The last couple of weeks have just sapped me.  The upcoming week promises to be challenging as Scott will be out of town the entire week.

I feel like a scarerow stuffed with sand and sawdust.  And that in my dummy foot, there is a tear and the sand is trickling out with every step, leaving just the sawdust.  Each step costs me a few grains, every grain takes with it a molecule of energy. At the end of the day, only the sawdust holds my skin in shape.

I hope to get some good rest, to fill up my reserves this week.  To tank up for the week ahead.  I'll need to employ all of my time-saving tricks, or I won't get all of us where we need to go, when we need to go there.  That means, plotting the entire week in my calendar like I'm preparing to take battle.  Gathering up all resources available, hoping that, unlike my misfortunes last spring, I do not get falling-down sick, nor near-hospitalization sick.  Please, not this spring.  Please?

The loneliness will be the toughest part -- working in my quiet office alone all day, then working alone in a quiet house after the kids have gone to bed, with only the random night sounds as a soundtrack.  I don't mind being alone, but I also don't think that I'm in a good frame of mind to be alone right now.  I don't behave irresponsibly, but the current fog of sadness that clings to my heart makes for bad company.  I much prefer the irreverent humor of my husband to the dismal yearning of my soul.

I do not know how single parent navigate this loneliness -- the monumental effort of marshaling two young children, two large dogs and the state of affairs in a home occupied by two young children and two large dogs leaves me no energy for socialization, no desire for fun.  How does a single mother even see past the endless drone of existence to look for friendship, courtship, or lovers?  I haven't the ambition for it.  I guess it is a very good thing that I love my spouse and want nothing but a good life with him, and that his goals and dreams nest together with mine perfectly.  Thank all things good for that...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Alice! Oh, Alice! Wherefore Art Thou, Alice?

There are two times of day that I just detest:  the fifteen minutes before we leave the house in the morning and the hour before dinner when we get back from the day.

Our mornings went so much more smoothly when, when...  well, I don't think they have ever gone smoothly.  Except when I'm home alone with the kids and that's because I organize like I have OCD.  When daddy's around, I don't set every little thing up the night before.  I don't shower before bed, hoping that my hair doesn't dry overnight like a flock of seagulls.  I don't put breakfasts on the plates, ready to zap in the microwave.  I don't order two cups of milk to stand at attention in the fridge all night, and I don't leap out of bed the first time my alarm announces morning.  I do all of that when he's gone and morning's go smoothly.  Hmmm...  *Smacking my own forehead* I think I just taught myself something here.

And that hour between work and dinner?  Ugh.  Ugh.  Ugh.  I can't think of anything more coherent to say about that witching hour.  Ugh.  I do completely understand that my kids miss me and clamor for my attention.  I know this because I miss them, too. I wish that we would walk in the door and Alice from The Brady Bunch would greet us, wearing her starched blue uniform, asking to pour me a glass of wine or a margarita or something, supper simmering happily on the stove.  If that were the case, I could devote that time to kids-on-the-couch snuggling or sliding-across-the-floor-in-our-socks contests, or even blowing-bubbles-in-the-driveway time.  But, last I checked, I don't have a maid.  Ugh.

Lately, they have both come home from daycare as hungry as hyenas -- I'm afraid to leave my hands near their snapping mouths, lest I lose a finger.  I somehow cannot cook dinner fast enough for spring days of outdoor play, running, climbing, swinging, laughing, and growing.  I offer a nutritious snack and it is inhaled before I turn back to the stove.  I give a big glass of water and it is drained before I turn off the tap.  Unfortunately, because I spend so much time hurling string cheese and apple slices at the ravenous vultures, I barely have time to tend the food for the meal I'm preparing to serve.  Things boil over or get stuck crisply to the pan, the microwave beeps endlessly to alert me that the veggies are done steaming.  I can barely slice a strawberry before a small pink hand plucks it from the cutting board.

I have learned that I cannot put the food on the table until we are ready to sit down because my children will climb up there and eat it before I can get there.  They have suddenly become very self-sufficient, dishing up their plates while I try to assemble silverware for all of us.  They empty the fruit bowl, gnaw on pork chops, and slurp up spaghetti before my bum even meets my chair.  And if Scott doesn't come the instant before I call him?  The kids are done eating, flying off their seats to wash their hands and scurry about their activities.  Leaving me sitting there, utterly bewildered, blinking at my husband as he sits down to his plate and we survey the wreckage left behind.  I just can't wait until they are teenagers...

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Judgement Day: Tabled for Now

It is 1:34 a.m. and I am awake.  Completely, totally awake, crystallized by insomnia.  I am thrumming, full of information; my brain won't stop inspecting the litany long enough for sleep to fully take my body.

We emerged more hopeful from my OB appointment.  And more solemn.  And more aware, no longer cushioned by the naivete of ignorance.  We are too late in this cycle for intervention, so we will start with vigilance, monitoring the cocktail of hormones in my blood.  We will inspect parts and counts more carefully than an airplane mechanic checks a plane engine the day after a tragic crash.  We will hope that nature compels his cell and mine to meet, urging a long-term relationship like a matchmaker.  If successful, we will sigh gratefully and thank the universe for our fortune.

If unsuccessful, we will enter a whole new realm of the surreal, involving augmentation and spinning cells and target practice to get the sperm a few inches closer to the egg.  There will be blood draws and pills, phone calls and procedures and hopefully, hopefully, hopefully a baby. 

Milo's conference went as expected.  He performed perfectly on his academic assessment, he is clearly capable of Kindergarten curriculum.  Although he is one of the younger kids in his class, he is able to pay attention, to transition well, to listen and learn.  He raises his hand to answer questions about the stories he is read, answering with "relevant" answers, showing that he has paid attention, has processed what he has heard, and is able to articulate his response appropriately.  We have never doubted his academic readiness.

Our biggest concern is his emotional and social readiness.  While he follows instructions well, takes turns and waits patiently during games, and transitions from activity to activity seamlessly, he does not generally seek out specific people with whom to play.  He finds an activity that interests him, starts playing and plays with whomever is nearby or engaged in the same activity.  This backs up his own statements of "I play with everyone."  He does, and he shares appropriately, too.

His classmates like him because he is kind and not aggressive.  He is cautious like his mama and lacks some confidence like his daddy did as an early learner.  We know this about him.  Although he clearly has the vocabulary to break into a group of kids, it is rarely if ever that he tries to join them.  "May I play with you?" does not trip easily from his tongue.  Just like his mommy and his daddy.  Sigh...

His teacher recommends AK for social reasons and did tell us that our school district starts the Talented and Gifted program in Kindergarten.  We are planning to discuss this in more depth with the Kindergarten teachers at Kindergarten Round-Up next month.  Kindergarten or AK?  We aren't sure yet... 

And that concludes this not-really-updated updated.  Judgment has been largely postponed today, tabled for another month.  It is 2:08 a.m. and I'm going to try to go to bed again.  See you when the sun is up!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Judgment Day

It is judgment day, at least for me.

I've got a 12:15 appointment with my OB to start figuring out why, after two very successful and easy pregnancies, I can't get pregnant with my third baby.  We've been trying for a year now and it is weighing heavier and heavier on me each day.  I can feel the weight sitting on my sternum, sometimes it is so crushing I can barely draw a breath.  Each week that slips by erodes my confidence further, taking with it a glimmer of hope and the last vestiges of my personality.  I feel so helpless and completely responsible all at the same time.  I am stifled by my overwhelming despair, it has begun spilling into places in my life where it shouldn't go, like work and play.

I am buoyed by my children, their sweet pink-cheeked faces bring a cascade of joy.  But it seems unfair for them to carry the burden of my happiness, so I do my best to just love them.  To encourage and guide them, to lift them and hold them and inspire them.  They are both so very happy right now -- living one moment to the next, seeking the new life of spring, cradling it in their inquisitive minds.

They have discovered that our apple tree is a perfect climbing tree, it's lowest sturdy branches fanning away from the trunk nearly parallel to the sodden turf.  They have been pruned for climbing, each fashioned into a cradle for children small and large.  Scott has hung a swing in one of the boughs, it hangs straight without needing much shimming, swinging in a graceful arc as a squealing blonde babe whooshes by, her golden ringlets dancing in the wind.

I have ordered seeds and plants for the garden, I wait excitedly for fresh strawberries, green beans, carrots, peas, potatoes, and raspberries.  I pored over the Gurney catalog, trying to figure out which varieties would best serve us, novice gardeners.  I ordered three varieties of pumpkins for my Halloween-loving hubby.  Broccoli for Milo.  Blue potatoes for Violet.  And two different kinds of raspberry bushes for me.  I picked the sampler pack of carrots for their novelty: orange, yellow, white, purple, and red.  A rainbow of carrots.  We will freeze and I will learn to can and, hopefully, the $100.00 spent on seeds and plants will at least pay for itself in produce.

We face another judgment this evening: Milo's first parent-teacher conference.  I wonder what the teachers will say about him...  Will they notice his aptitude for math?  He counts to 100, to 100 by twos, and 1000 by tens.  He recognizes all of the letters and knows their sounds.  He's starting to read.  He listens carefully to directions and figures so many things out all on his own.  Will they see that?  Or will his performance anxiety give them pause to recommend he not enter kindergarten this fall.  I think he's ready, but then again, I'm not impartial nor fair when it comes to him. 

And so I wait, anxious and occasionally dizzy, my fingertips buzzing.  I fear that bad news will send me diving off a precipice into a lake of sorrow.  I fear that I may be drowning already.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Who are you?
What are you doing?
What do you want?
Stop. And...

That's the loop that repeats over and over in my head as I walk.  Every eight steps it repeats.

Right now, I can't seem to answer those questions.  I can answer others easily, though:
Who do you love? My family. 
What would you do for them?  Anything.

But the other questions, the ME questions?  I'm so fuzzy right now.  DespondentAngrySadFrustratedBoredConfused and fuzzy.

Who are you?
What are you doing?
What do you want?
Stop. And...

I don't know.
I don't know.
I don't know.
Stop.  And...

Stop. And...



Wednesday, March 17, 2010

My Funny Girl!

Miss Violet has been learning her body parts.  All of them.  Yes, she's aware that she and her brother are not the same.  She completely understands that girls have a  'gina and boys have a peeeeenus.

 Here's a conversation with her father that I overheard:

Scott:  Does Milo have a penis?

Violet:  Yes.  He's a boy.

Scott:  Do you have a penis?

Violet:  No.  I'm a girl.  I have a 'gina.

Scott: What about Mocha?  (One of our dogs)

Violet:  She has a tail, daddy.  She's a dog!

Yep...  That's my funny girl...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Hello World! Remember Me?

Hello, world!  It's me again!

Still not pregnant.  Although, I did get my appointment with my doc moved up a whopping whole week.  Which, at this rate, will put me visiting right about ovulation time.  I'm guessing there will be bloodwork involved, maybe an ultrasound, I dunno.  I'll be rooting for the "hubby in the bathroom with some questionable 'reading' material and a cup" test, too, to see if the gout meds he was taking caused any issues with his swimmers.  Of course, he's been off the gout meds for a year with barely a flare-up, so maybe he can ditch them after all?  But of all the tests, that one seems at least pleasurable -- way more than having a KYed ultrasound wand poking around my innards.

Milo asked me to teach him how to tie his shoes yesterday and has figured out how to open a web browser and type "" and find some wholesome, educational computer stuff to do.  He attended a brass concert yesterday with his preschool class and says he now wants to play the trumpet -- or a cow horn.  They used one as a demonstration and now I think he thinks that there are cow horns in the brass section of a marching band.

Violet is turning into an adept staller at bedtime: she asks for one more song, one more book, new water in her sippy, and a different noise on the white noise machine every night.  Last night she added, "My go potty" and "Daddeeeee there are ladybugs in my room!" to her ever-expanding list.  She's such a cute little bug when she sleeps -- all curled up, bum in the air.  She also got a new spring coat and was eager to show it off to anyone who looked, telling them proudly, "My got a new spwing coat at Tawget!  See!  There's a wibbon and a bow on the back!  My cute now!"  I guess she didn't think her winter coat was cute?

Anyway, I hope to get caught up on all of the bloggy stuff I've neglected, so keep an eye out for me!  I'm a rampant commenter and will find you somewhere, bwah-hahahaha!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Sliced Wide Open: A Post-Mortem

I apologize for my self-imposed electronic blackout this weekend -- my play was performing and I simply didn't want to waste the precious few minutes I had with my lovely babes (pictured below) blogging.  So, my bloggy pals, you now know that your place is on a rung below my family.  Hope that wasn't too painful to hear...

I'm not sure I can express all that this weekend was.  But let me try, anyway.

Opening night was abysmal, at least for me.  I fumbled, got completely lost, and dropped a paragraph -- this is not my norm.  I felt that I let down my scene partner, the director, and, most of all, the playwright -- who was in the audience.  Bad move on my part, but it set me up for some of the most astounding work I've ever done in front of an audience.

As an actor, I am well aware that my biggest hurdle is my own brain.  I over-think.  I censor.  I evaluate in the midst of performance.  I'm quite certain that this is what caused my stumble on opening night and I knew what the fix was, but would I be able to push my own brain out of my body so that my body could do the work?  The scene is brief and escalates quickly, so there is no warm-up, no easing into the moment.  I had to go there immediately and live there fully.

I have had glimpses of this feeling of stepping our of my brain and into my body before -- in acting classes a couple of times.  One time, I got a devastating note from a director before a final dress rehearsal and the rawness and panic I felt about the show slid effortlessly into the rehearsal, but I was never able to bring that back to any performance.  I wouldn't say that I was ever BAD doing that work, just not really good.

As I took the stage Friday night, I felt all of the stress about opening drift away.  I started breathing and could feel the breath come up from my toes, could feel it pushing energy into my fingertips.  When my scene partner came onstage, I looked at him and he looked back and it was as if I was seeing him for the first time.  The scene started and I gave up control entirely.  It ended entirely too soon.  Backstage, I was thrilled.  So much more real, so much more invested, so much more authentic.  What a great feeling!

I felt the momentum, knew that somehow I was on the verge of something I have never achieved -- the perfect melding of me, my partner, and the script.  Every time I took the stage, I felt energized, open and, well, open.  I was listening, closely, closely with my entire body and I had pushed the censoring mechanisms out of my brain, out of my conscious.

The Saturday night and Sunday afternoon performances will go down as a benchmark for me -- as moments when what was happening onstage, in me, and with my scene partner were perfectly balanced on that thin line between love and hate.  Where I dropped the cloak of comfort and opened myself to him and to the moment.  Where I got out of my own way.  Where in six minutes I went from me and a coffee mug and OK to completely wrecked, shaking and dazed, wide open and immensely vulnerable.  I've never come off stage that completely spent, that utterly used.

I cannot say enough that this absolutely has everything to do with the material, the direction, and the skill of my scene partner.  The script must have an emotional hook and the director must create an environment ripe for exploration.  An actor doesn't get to that place of pure honesty if he or she cannot trust that the person onstage with them will go there with them -- to that place where following an impulse is greeted with an honest reaction, where in the moment you decided to shut me up with a kiss and ruin me, right there in front of sixty people we don't know.  I was drunk and delirious, barely able to walk -- I have never been so happy to feel so bad in my entire life.

So thank you to Brian, Brian, Joe, (and Brian) for this completely extraordinary experience.  Joe, if you ever bring more to the tale of Pip and Kit, I want to be there and go there with you.

Why I Love Being a Mom

Friday, March 5, 2010

Delusionally Tired Mama

Tech week for the show.  For those of you who don't know what that means, it is the last week of rehearsal leading up to the performances where you include the crew, lights, sounds, and costumes.  This is normally an exhausting week.

Monday and Tuesday were actually pretty OK. I didn't have to stick around for the second act of the show, so I was home before 9 each night. Kids slept well, normalcy reigned.

Then came Wednesday. I picked the kids up from daycare and while I was putting Violet's boots on her, she cried out "Ow! My mouf hurts!" and stuck her finger into the wayback part of her right cheek. I looked in there but didn't see anything, and she stopped crying quickly, so I shrugged it off. By the time we drove 8 minutes home, she was crying again, that panicky quick "something really hurts" cry, so I bustled the kids inside to find the thermometer and a flashlight to see if I could figure out what was up.

As soon as we got in the house, Milo had a tantrum because I told him I wasn't going to turn on the Wii because I needed to figure out what was up with Violet. I get a flashlight and still can't see anything in her mouth, so I start rummaging for the thermometer. And looking and looking. I give up when I'm about to pee my pants and run for the bathroom. A few moments after I sit down, Violet comes running and shouting "Frow up! Frow up!"

I think she's going to barf, so I ask her if she is sick.

"No, mommy, Mocha frow up on the floor!" That's the dog. Sigh.

I've only got 30 minutes before I need to leave for rehearsal and Scott's not home yet, so I have two crying children and a barfing dog. I can't find the thermometer and I'm trying to cook supper. He finally arrives home about the time I locate the thermometer and, when I try to take Violet's temperature, so looses it when I touch her right earlobe. Yep, ear infection.

Scott thinks we need to call the doctor to see if we can get her in that night. What does he do? He hands me the phone because I've now got 15 minutes to finish cooking and get into my costume. I call the doctor as I'm cooking and find out there are no appointments left that night. We briefly debate whether or not to take her to a walk in clinic, but I think that since it's already 5:45, they wouldn't get to a clinic until 6:30 at the earliest and would likely not get seen until 9:00 -- waay too late for the kids. I think that we can manage her pain and agree to an afternoon appointment for Thursday (yesterday).  I tell him that I can take her and that I didn't think it was a good idea to have both kids out at a walk-in clinic after bedtime.

I had six bites of food, get into costume and was out the door before they were finished eating. I didn't get back from rehearsal until 10:30 and I pretty much ate a snack and went to bed.

Yesterday: I do my annual Staff Talent Show group dance at lunchtime, then dash across campus to the car so that I can pick Violet up and take her to the doctor. Ear infection confirmed. Pick up prescription, do a little Target browsing, drop Violet back at daycare, finish up the work day and pick up the kids -- neither of whom wants to leave daycare. Fight to get them into the car.

Get home to find Scott has the burn barrel going and there's nasty smoke wafting into the garage and house. Great -- I really want to show up for opening night smelling like a bonfire... The dogs are running loose, too, and only one comes into the house when called. Scott finds the other one eating god knows what in the neighbor's yard. They come in, tracking mud everywhere. Scott spends fifteen minutes trying to figure out where the mop is, what I use on the floor to clean it, etc. He mops while I cook. As soon as he finished mopping, Mocha barfs again and now we know what she'd been eating in the neighbor's yard. Sigh...

Kids eat well and I eat fast so that I can get ready for the show. Naturally, Scott is doodling around on the computer and Milo is playing, so Violet comes into my bathroom to amuse herself -- pulling out every hair product I have, wanting to know if she can wear my make-up, and generally making a mess. Because I have 10 minutes to get out of the house. Milo wander in asking for a glass of chocolate milk. Asking Scott was just too easy, considering he was sitting right next to him. I finish my hair, get dressed, and make Milo's milk. Get to the performance only two minutes after I should have been there.

Hang out for the interminable amount of time until they get to my show. Take the stage confidently because I've had three great rehearsals leading up to opening. Get freakin' lost in the middle of the show, stammer a bit, get back on track but feel like a jackass for biffing a line and frakking up the play. Wait the rest of the interminable evening until the second act is done, do curtain call, and head for home.

I finally drag myself momentarily to bed, but then Violet was up four times. Milo had a coughing spell, and I had to pee. I think I slept about 2.5 hours.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Wayback Wednesday: Confessions of a Reformed Disco Vampire

I don't know why this popped into my head this morning as I was driving my kids to daycare, but I have been in two movies.  Not REAL released (even straight to video) movies.  And, no, not porn (who would want to see me in porn?  Ick!).  No, two movies filmed when I was in college by college students who had no budget, but manage to fund a steady-cam by scraping together every penny they found, whether it was discovered in the couch cushions, stuck to the sidewalk, or borrowed from mom.

Amazingly, I do not have an IMDb credit.  What, you mean you haven't seen the indelible works of art The Vampire Human Wars and Saturday Night Fever 3?  For shame...

To tell you the truth, I can't remember the plots of either of these movies.  I just know that I did have the female lead in SNF3.  Sure, I was dating the director, but I was dating him before he started filming, so I don't know that our "relationship" had anything to do with the casting.  I do remember the costume I wore for many of the scenes: a green long-sleeved t-shirt, ivory leggings, and ivory pumps.  Hey, it was 1992 and I was 18 and was wearing a size that is approximately half my dress size now.  And to think I complained about being fat then... sigh... 

Anyway, the big dance scene was filmed in a bar.  In, like, two takes.  They had to film during the daytime because I wasn't even old enough to get into the bar.  They guy in the John Travolta role was a really funny fella -- and kinda on the round-ish side.  This is the scene where he finally wins me over, we all dance together, and the film ends in one of those kisses where the camera circles the couple about 20 times.  I remember this mostly because after the dancing, the male lead was so sweaty that I kept sliding off his face.  Ah, good times...

I had a much smaller role in TVHW.  But I was a vampire before it was cool to be a vampire.  How many moms can claim that?

My big scene involved me trapping the protagonists and laughing an evil laugh.  The evil laugh that went on forever.  I asked the director (whom I was not dating -- he was gay and I wasn't and am not a guy) how long I should laugh.  He said, "As long as you can."  So I took the kind of breath you take when you realize your ship is sinking and you're about to go under and I started laughing.

And laughing.

And laughing.

And laughing.

Apparently, I can suck up as much air as a whale because I was still laughing 45 seconds later.

This costume was simple -- goth before goth was goth -- black, black, black and a billion layers.  Sheena Easton eye make-up.  And a push-up bra which was entirely unnecessary.  The other two vampiresses (is that a word?) were nearly A cups and I was an overflowing C, so with the bra I was wearing, the movie could very accurately have been called The Vampire Boob Human Wars.  Hmmm.... now that I think about this, it might have been porn after all...  No wonder I don't show up in IMDb.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Tailgating (and not the fun kind)

It is always an adventure getting out of the house in the morning, even on days like today where things work pretty well.  After we're all loaded into the car and have each kissed daddy as he circles the car, opening both rear doors to give us "one more kiss, daddy!" we pull out and head into town.  We never meet any traffic until we're off the gravel -- fine by me -- there's a 25 foot stretch around an uphill curve that has gotten narrower and narrower all winter as the plows heap the snow into taller and taller walls.  It's down to a lane and a quarter, so meeting someone headfirst around the blind curve would be, well, not good.

In fact, we rarely meet any traffic on our way in most mornings.  It's probably because most families are a little better about getting out of the house on time than we are.  Occasionally we'll pass someone going the other direction, but we seldom follow anyone into town and it's even more unlikely that anyone follows us.

This morning, however, someone did follow us.  Actually, this driver wasn't so much following, but tailgating.  Considering I was already driving five over, I was none too happy to see in my rear-view mirror, the driver sighing impatiently and shaking his head.  I double checked to make sure that this fella wasn't a volunteer firefighter/ambulance responder, but he didn't have a flasher going and he was so close I couldn't see his front license plate.

About this time, Violet starts calling, "Look, mommy!  My shoe is not tied!"  After the fifth time, I answered, "Violet, mommy cannot tie your shoes while she's driving."

"Mommy, just look!  Please look!  I not tie my shoes.  Please, look?"

Normally I wouldn't consider a quick glance into the backseat a driving hazard, but the driver behind me was closing the very small gap between our cars.  I lifted my foot from the accelerator to slow down as we exited a "no passing" zone, hoping that he would pass me.  I saw him make that ultimate of impatient driving gestures, the Steering Wheel Pound.  And yet he would not pass me.

"Mommy!  Mommy!  Please, my shoe!  Mommy!  Look!"

"Violet, mommy can't look right now.  There is a bad driver behind us and I need to be safe."

Just then, the exasperated driver decided to FINALLY pass me.  Finally.  Not like we were a quarter of a mile past the end of the double yellow lines or anything.  Sheesh...

Milo observed, "Hey, the bad driver is in front of us now!  You can see Violet's shoes!"

And I glanced back to see that Violet, had, just as she said she had, untied her pink tennis shoes.  "I can't tie them when I'm driving, sweet pea, so let's sing some songs instead!"  She readily agreed and we all happily sang along to the Phineas and Ferb soundtrack.  "He's Perry... Perry the Platypus (You can call him Agent P)."

We pulled up to the railroad crossing just as the end of a long train was clearing the intersection.  Who was in front of us, having likely watched the entire train go by?  Mr. Patience himself.  I guess it was worth tailgating a mother and her two small children to get to watch more of the train, huh?

Monday, March 1, 2010

Running in Pumps

I made a big boo-boo today.  I was in a meeting and lost track of time until a co-worker asked me, "Don't you have to take your son to school?"

"Yes," I said.  "At 12:15."

"It's 12:32."

PANIC!  Danger, Will Robinson!  And then that crazy sqwaking alarm from "Emergency!" AAAh-oooh-EEEEE!

Then mama was slamming her feet into her shoes, jamming her arms into her sweater, and cramming her coat under her arm.

Clack, clack, clack, clack as I speedwalk through the student union so that I don't look like a complete dork in front of the entire student body, or at least the ones waiting in line for food service.

Stamp, stamp, stamp, stamp as I climb the steps of terror.  You can see the ground in between the steps and I have a fear of heights, so it was a Major Accomplishment for me to haul up this staircase, right up the middle and without clinging to the handrail like it was a ski tow rope.

Click, click on the tile for the two steps until I hit the doors.

Then SPRINT!  Mama's running across campus in heels.  Mama's running downhill perilously fast in pumps.  Mama gets to the car, does an illegal U-turn while buckling her seat belt, drives three blocks to the sitter's, where an anxiously waiting man-child greets me at the door.

"I'm-oh-so-sorry-I-was-in-a-meeting-and-am-so-sorry-I'm-late!  Let's-get-in-the-car-fast!"  He can get in the car fast because it is still runnning and his door is flung wide open.  Like a good little rabbit, he scurries to the car and into his seat.

While I'm buckling him, he asks in a quivering voice, "How many minutes?"  As in how many minutes before we're late.

"Umm..."  I falter.  He's self-conscious enough that telling him we're late will freak him out.  "One minute!"  I say.

"That's not much time, mom..."

"Nope.  But we'll get there.  It's only five blocks and when we're on time there are always kids getting there after we do."

"Yeah, but everyone's going to stare at me."

"No they won't!  Look -- those kids are late, too!"  I had spied a daycare provider with four kids in tow arriving only a moment before we parked.  "we'll be just fine!  I'll unzip your coat when I unbuckle your carseat and we can take it off before we get into your room.  I'll even carry it and your backpack, so all we need to do is find you name over your hook and then you can play, okay?'

Thankfully, the plan worked and he was in his class a mere four minutes late (my co-worker's watch was three minutes fast). And me?  Well... I'm  not flushed and sweaty anymore and my feet aren't screaming with blisters, so I'll consider that a winning performance.  Whew!