Friday, September 19, 2008

Do you really want to?

This morning there was a lot of chaos under this roof. There is always some chaos, but today there was an above average amount.

It was a no dress code day for my three grade schoolers, though my husband dressed them all in uniforms. When I came down the steps, they were crying and gnashing their teeth, and pleading with me to help.

I didn't know it was a no dress code day, my husband responded to the question, why are they in their uniforms?

The bus will be here any minute. There is no time for them to change.

I'll change them and take them to school today.

Do you really want to? he asks.

The teenager is not ready. She doesn't feel good and her pants are too long. Consequently, she is not ready to leave with her father.

Do you want to take her to school too?

On the way to school, she is crying, I'm going to be late, while Ethan speaks up from the back seat...

I forgot my library book, again. I promised I would bring it back today. I have to go home and get it.

We arrive at high school.

I'll call you when I'm done.

Oh, except I forgot my phone.

You don't mind if I take yours, do you?

We drop the little kids off in the car line and the vice principal wants to know why Ethan is getting out of the car?

Aren't you coming to school today she asks?

The library book story is recounted.

She assures him he can bring it on Monday, but he won't get out of the car.

My mom is going to take me home to get it.

She looks at me and asks, do you really want to?

As we make our second trip back to school, I contemplate all the times I have been asked the question DO I REALLY WANT TO? in the relatively short amount of time since I have been conscious. Each time, it was asked, I didn't really answer. I took it as more of hypothetical, thinking each time, do I really have choice?

When Ethan got out of the car, book in hand, obviously relieved that he wasn't going to have to avoid the librarian all day as his older sister suggested, I realized that the question wasn't a hypothetical. I could have let them go to school in their uniforms; could have made my husband drive daughter to school and get to work late; could have insisted that Ethan get out of the car the first time I drove school...

So I guess the answer is yes, I really do want to. Not that I enjoy necessarily driving around like a limo driver, picking up others slack, surrendering my cell phone at moments's not about the particulars. What I really want to do is help my family, and if something as simple second trip back home to get a forgotten book can make my son's day better, then yes, I really want to. If only all the worlds problems could be solved so easily.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Evidence

We did get into Martha's kitchen...
But you know what, I think I might like mine better. It's not as pretty, and it probably doesn't produce as good of food, but it's comfortable...

Truly, I am an idiot. What more can I say. You gotta take the good with the bad. Most times, I think the bad outweighs, but you'll have to be the judge

The Day is over, I'm smiling, and going to bed!!!!!!!!!

If you or kids haven't read this book,
go out and get it now. Just make sure
you get gas FIRST.

Read below. Then look here. Don't ask why. It's been a terrible horrible no good very bad day, It's 11:56 P.M., and for the first time in months, couldn't publish these pics below? When will it ever end. Hopefully 12:01a.m.? But who knows?

Laurie (ofthesevenstories) and the terrible horrible no good very bad day

Um, yeah... remember Alexander?

I do, as it was one of my favorite stories to read as a child. I think I probably liked hearing, like all kids do, that once in a while, everybody really has a terrible horrible no good very bad day...

Back then, like Alexander, I thought not getting the right color stripes on my sneakers was like a serious wrong. Not to minimize Alexander's tale. The message is universal. Sometimes a bad day is just bad,and there is nothing you can do to stop it. As a child, this is particularly true, because after all, you are in not control. You have to rely on the will of others. And sometimes things just snowball, and a day seems to go haywire and out of control...

Unlike Alexander, I didn't wake up with gum in my hair, but I did wake up like super,super early this am. Like we're talking 1:40; 2:40; 3:40, and omigod, it's time to get ready. I had showered the night before. I laidout my clothes. I packed my camera;etc. in my purse, so I'd be ready to go.

The GPS was loaded, and I was headed to meet fellow local blogger, Sarah, of Genisis Moments so that we could meet Beth, of Total Mom Haircut to attend the Martha Stewart Show in NYC to see her special on bloggers. From 3:40 on, I scampered and scurried as fast as I could to get to Sarah to pick her up so that we could head to NYC via the Trenton Train Station.

I got to Sarah's house at about quarter after five. She questioned whether we would make the train? I assured her that we would, thinking that absolutely that would be the case...

We were running two to three minutes behind the train we planned to take, but there were at least three or four others that would have been later, but still would have enabled us to get to the show. I drove fast. I followed the GPS. When the gas light came on, I figured, oh I've got time. How many times have I figured this and been fine? Oh, probably 6512498543215455 billion times, and I'm always fine.

Today, apparently, the 6512498543215456 billionth time, NOT.SO.MUCH.

That's right folks, one mile from the train station, WE.RAN.OUT.OF.GAS.

Sarah was upset, and rightfully so. She told me that she wished I would have stopped for gas the night before... What could I say except, "I'm sorry." Often and repeatedly.

I called AAA, and figured that they would be there quickly. I called Sarah a cab and thought she could go without me.

It took AAA 11/2 hours to find us. As it turned we literally were seconds from New Jersey, but technically in PA. As a result, the initial tow truck, coming with gas, turned around, stating that they didn't come to PA. Thanks so much for your help AAA. I'll definitely be renewing next year!

The cab, I called for Sarah, also never came. I don't even know why.

We called 911 New Jersey- but we were in PA; they told us to call the turnpike hotline- but we weren't on the turnpike- finally someone put me through to the police in PA.

90 minutes later, with absolutely no hope of getting Sarah to the show, the police and AAA arrived and we were back in business. I got gas, and we decided to make a day of it and head into NYC anyway to meet Beth, who did actually wind up making it to the show.

The consellation prize(?) was that we did get to see an afternoon taping of Martha's show, though it was not on the topic of blogging. It was about figs. I like figs enough, but, of course, it wasn't the same; and I was unable to shake the terrible, horrible, very bad feeling that came as a result of my having such a day when others were involved and affected by my day. And I was powerless to fix things, really fix things....

But alas, as it was for Alexander, and Scarlet O'hara, it will be for me. Tommorow brings a new day, a fresh start, an opportunity to try again.

Laurie (ofthesevenstories) and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day

Laurie (ofthesevenstories) and the TERRIBLE HORRIBLE NO GOOD VERY BAD DAY

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Fessing up...

All of the "ist" groups that I could be associated with, I' m proud to say that I would consider myself to be a member of only one. Mostly this is a good thing, as there aren't too many ists groups that come to my mind that have positive values. For example, I do not subscribe to the points of view of the following:
*antagonists, well, this one may be debatable
*realists, in my opinion, this is not such a good group, at least for me.
*idealists; I used to be one, but then I grew up, as most of the members of this ist do
*apologists; I only rarely say I'm sorry, as I'm hardly ever wrong

Of course, there are some good "ist" groups, too. Sadly, I do not belong to those either.

I'd love to be a philanthropist, but I just don't have the money.
Once, in college, I thought for a while about being anthropologist, but then there was all that digging.
Also thought of being a sociologist; but they don't make any money. Good thing I decided to major in philosophy.
I have seen some psychologists and some psychiatrists. I'm not sure that they are good "ists". They sort of waiver between the two groups; hanging in the balance, in my mind. No, on second thought, psychologists are in the bad ists group cause all they can do is talk; and bill you 200. an hour. I talk and no pays me. Psychiatrists, on the other hand, are in the good ist group, as they can prescribe medication. Note, I am also not a scientologist. Sorry Tom Cruise. I liked you in Jerry Maguire, but not nearly as much as I like xanax.

There are two ists groups to which I think I do belong;

I think I am a feminist, although others may disagree. My husband often tells me that I am not. I reply, "well who is doing the dishes?" right before I put his laundry away.

The ist that I know I am, however, is a bad ist. I wish I weren't. I wish somehow I could take it back, erase it from my mind, separate the part of my brain that clings to the fact that I hate getting old; and thus I am an AGEIST. There, I said it. I don't feel better.

You see, today, I turn thirty four. 34. I am leaving my early thirties and entering my mid thirties. It is not place that I want to go. I am not happy here. I don't like the idea of wrinkle cream or doctor's visits to check and see if I have any of the 200+billion diseases that old people get. I don't like the idea of not being hip; or being untrustworthy; or having to grow up and be responsible. I like being the younger generation, the kid, the young one. Maybe its because I am the baby of the family. I don't know.

For the past several weeks, in anticipation of this day, I have been trying to mentally prepare myself. Mostly at night, I would have talks with myself, not out loud, I'm NOT that old YET. I would try to soothe myself.

If I live until age 90(ha!), I'm a good ten years from middle age. Not such a soothing thought. Next.

Thirty four is still relatively young. I am young. I have six years until I am forty. A little better, but still depressing.

Really young looking people are forty and older. Look at Brad Pitt. Oh yeah, he's a man and a Hollywood actor. Does not apply to me.

That vice presidential candidate chick is 42; a real person; and she has five kids. Maybe there is hope for me.

I saw on the news this morning that a new type of exercise is sweeping the older generation. Cane fu. Avg age range, 60. I'm not even close to that age; so I' m REALLY not that OLD.

Forty is supposed to be the new twenty; so in all actuality, I'm only turning fourteen today.

You know what, on my thirty fourth birthday, I actually want to be labeled a teenage mom. All of the sudden, it feels good. With age does come wisdom. So maybe instead of being depressed I should look forward to turning forty, I mean twenty.

Maybe in six years. Right now, I' m still trying to accept fourteen.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Keith, calm down...

My brother has a theory that there has never been any one by the name of Keith who is truly a success in this world. When he first mentioned this to me, I responded with, "well Keith Olbermann is successful, kind of, in his field."

"No, he's not," my brother replied, in a matter-of-fact tone. If their is one thing that my brother is, it's self-assured. Unlike me, he does not ever feel the need to justify, quantify, rationalize and explain everything he says so that everyone he says it to will understand and agree. I admire this about him; it can be pretty freaking annoying, but at least you know when he commits himself to something, he means it.

This is why when we had this conversation, and initially I didn't understand fully his assessment of Keith Olbermann, I didn't really inquire any further. Doing so would have gotten me no where, and because my brother and I are subscribe to different political ideologies, I thought "what the hell is the point?"

I am a registered Democrat.

I never really watched Keith Olbermann. I mean I knew who he was; I have listened to his commentaries when he is on a panel, but I never really more than glanced at his show, until last night.

Boy, am I glad that I didn't get into a raging debate with my brother over this guy. He is absolutely nuts.

It was sometime after 10 o'clock when alas, my head was able to hit my pillow, and I thought to myself, I think I might like to watch a little t.v. before I go to bed. I admit, I have become somewhat of a political talk show junkie, and that I have even watching Fox news, if I can't find any other political commentary, as of late. I turned to CNN last night, however, just in time to catch Keith going crazy. I wish I could you tube and put a video of his temper tantrum right here on my blog, but I haven't learned how to do that yet. If any one out there in cyberspace wants to help me, let me know...

If you didn't see it, you'll have to take my word for it, Keith was really out of line. I was only half paying attention to his commentary on Sara Palin and the whole lipstick on a pig debacle. Basically, he was defending Senator Obama and while I don't think the comment is the worst thing in the world, I don't know if I would defend it as much as I would say it was a mistake, everyone makes mistakes, and try to minimize its real importance in this real. If you ask me, Senator Obama should be more concerned about he how alienated millions of female voters
by not choosing Hillary Clinton as his v.p., but that's just my take.

It was Keith's tirade about Senator McCain that was super scary. He started off saying that McCain is trying to commercialize 9/11. He might be, but let's be honest, all of the candidates are watching their ps and qs today and trying to get voter mileage out of this day of terrible tragedy in American History. It's the nature of the political beast, and there is no way around it for any one running for office. He picked on Rudi Giuliani, and blamed him in part for 9/11. Again, could be partly his fault, but certainly, in his way, he tried to help the people of NYC in the wake of 9/11, and I certainly do not think that Rudi Giuliani deliberately did anything to bring about 9/11, which Olbermann implied.

Then he got on McCain for making a statement, in which he claimed that he knew how to capture Osama Bin Laden, and that if he was elected he would do so. This is when the foam starting coming out of old Keith's mouth, and his eyes began to bulge, and if I not mistaken, his skin began to turn green, and he muttered "you won't like me when I'm angry."

"Mr. McCain", he said, in the tone of a prosecutor delivering a closing argument on a mass murderer, (and now I'm paraphrasing) if you can find and deliver Osama Bin Laden to the United States government, and you don't because you don't get elected that is tantamount to "aiding and abetting" Osama Bin Laden.

Okay, like I said, I consider myself to be "liberal", but this is way over the line. John McCain, your candidate or not, is a former P.O.W. He risked his life for our country, and even if you don't agree with his policies or politics, I think it is an absolute abomination to link him in with Taliban leader, Osama bin Laden. I mean, Keith, are you kidding? What in the hell have you ever done besides sit your ass on a chair and talk nonsense for hours on end, and probably get paid a fortune to do so.

What angers me about this guy is that not only is he making outlandish and ridiculous statements about a man who served our country as a POW, he is simultaneously denigrating democrats everywhere. This is guy is no better than Rush Limbaugh, polarizing political discourse with hate speech to promote his personal agenda. I am revolted, disgusted, and ashamed.

Why can't people have level headed discussions about politics where they keep their disagreements to the issues and avoid distasteful, personal attacks. I expect better behavior from my children. Not that I always get it, but at least, I expect it.