Wednesday, January 31, 2007

I've Been Tagged!

So, I've been tagged! By Beccy. This makes me feel special and gooey, so now I'm in love with Beccy.

Here's the deal... I'm supposed to link back to three previous posts that describe my personalit well. Considering I'm now at 359 posts, this is like asking me to choose three of my DNA traits.

There's also the issue that I don't think any of my posts are that funny. In my head, they're witty and hysterical. And then what my fingers type is actually whiny, not-clever, and usually quite vulgar.

How this happens, I'm not sure.

So really, there are a few things that are important in my life. Like Beccy, I've found that reading my old posts means that I've noticed that my writing has evolved quite a bit during the past three years. Tell me if you think otherwise...

The first important thing in my life is Sweetie Pie. I think how Sweetie Pie and I got married really shows a lot about me, considering that I'm a complete commitment phobe who thought I would never get married. This, fellows is how you capture a wild stallion like myself.

You don't believe I'm a wild stallion? I admit, I have been neutered, but here's a
glance at my old life. That would also be a glance at my paranoia and how I'm always convinced people are mad at me, since the next day, I blogged about confronting Sweetie Pie and finding out he'd slept on the couch all night because he was sick as a dog.

Also, I think I've mentioned a couple of times that I was fired from my last real job a couple of years ago for having a crappy ass personality. Here's where I explain what went down.

But this post, would probably explain my personality best. It's my confessions post and a lot of these things were stories that I'd never told a soul before. That only I knew about. This is probably the best window to my soul to offer to perfect strangers and a few friends... Is it funny? Doubtful. Sexy? Well, I do mention boobs in it, so maybe.

Here's one that I do think is funny. But that's because I have the sense of humor of a six-year old boy, and farts always crack me up. In case you love posts about farts, here's another one.

So now, you want sexy? Oh I'll give you sexy baby... How about this one?

And then I can be whimsical ever so often...See?

I know that's way more than three posts. But when have I ever been short-winded? I wanted to finish off with one final post, the one where I talked about the time I pooped a perfect penis with testicles attached and told Sweetie Pie he needed to come see it, since it really was a poop work of art, but I can't seem to find it. But be assured, it was a fantastically nasty story.



Compliment Whore

I'm really quite easy to please. Say something nice to me, and I will claim my undying love for you. Cut me down, and I shut down and you will never get me to even breathe in around you, because I don't want to hear you say that my nostrils flare funny when I do it.

This has been my big issue with work, well, ever since I started working. I get kudos or praise and I float on a cloud, grin happily and vow to conquer an army of militant paper pushers for you. But the second you question my judgement or something, tell me I'm not a good enough writer, or tell me I messed up and the world will no longer be able to orbit around the sun because of my PR snafu, and it's all over. Cue the "wuh wuh wuh..." sound effect.

And this week has been really good. I'm in love with one of the industries I represent. And hey love me, they really love me. I get on the phone with these guys, and it's literally like I'm having an affair with these people, cheating on Sweetie Pie with a whole army of men, because I'm so in love with them. They tell me that my writing makes their world a better place to live. And my ideas make them swoon. My successes light their world. And I grin, like a schoolgirl. Even if all of our meetings are by phone, I reapply my lipstick before I speak to them, because I know that my ideas will sound even better if my lips are plumped with pink goodness.

Forget the war. Forget global warming. My piece of the world is warm, toasty and filled with love, sunshine and smiles.



Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I'm Now One of Them

When I was young and single and skinnier and had large boobs that looked up towards the sun, I had many hobbies. Most of them involved drinking and watching TV, but I was out there, and I was cool and I had many things to talk about.

And at every job, there'd always be that one lame person who had kids. And all they'd freaking talk about was those kids. "Joey did this." "Oh, Maria said the funniest thing! (Insert non-funny story about kid saying something wrong like "pasghetti, then insert my fake laugh and internal eye rolling)."

Then I had Little Man. And I became someone who looks fairly thin when I'm dressed, because I've mastered the art of optical illusions and my boobs only look straight ahead when they're put in the booby equivalent to a straight jacket with a Victoria's Secret label on it. And the first year of his life, I was at home alone with him. He was pretty much my everything, except for scrapbooking.

And the only adults I ever saw besides Sweetie Pie, were other moms. Who talked about poop and vomit and sleep deprivation and not showering before 5 p.m. (if at all) and other topics that all of a sudden, fascinated me. And it was no big deal that I'd become one of those people I used to loathe, because I was surrounded by others like me.

It was like a mommy cult, except instead of tainted kool-aid, we'd drink water or non-alcoholic beverages and yearn for anything that contains tequila.

But now, I'm at work again. And I find that when my co-workers, neither of which has kids, ask me "what'd you do this weekend?", I will launch into a dissertation on the effects of teething on diapers and vividly describe my son's diarrhea to people who enjoyed getting hammered with friends and did activities like horseback riding with their boyfriend and checking out the newest restaurant.

And when they leave, I slap myself in the head, because I know they're thinking "dude, get a freaking hobby."

I completely understand the concept of Empty Nest Syndrome now. When Little Man leaves in 17 years, what the hell am I going to talk about?

So I'm trying now. I talk about Grey's Anatomy excessively and clever things I've read on the Internet. And reality shows. I am quickly getting a reputation for being all-knowing about all reality shows on MTV.

Which, to me, is still better than coming off to 20-something year old people "as that old lady with kids who has no freaking life."

Before I leave, I want to give a shout out to my male readers who comment!!!! For the longest time, my blog was coming off as a National Organization of Women blog, as my only readers seemed to be women. I'm not sure what led you here boys, if you're one of my weird google searches looking for MILF's or big boobies. But whatever it is, I heart you. I will try to incorporate raunchiness as much as I can when not discussing c-section scars and 4 a.m. teething issues.



Monday, January 29, 2007

Weekends Are For Overeating And Dodging Sex

So I accomplished two things this weekend: fell off the diet bandwagon with a thud that could be heard halfway across the world and avoided any kind of intimate contact with Sweetie Pie.

Both of these things came to me naturally, I must admit. The diet disruption happened when I didn't have my Slim Fast on Saturday morning, and was so starved after Little Gym, that the simple thought of a salad was enough to make me want to go on a killing spree. So I swung by a McDonald's drive through, got myself a McGriddle sandwich (without cheese. Processed cheese is the most disgusting item that has the gall to put itself in the food category, where things like chocolate and Brie belong) and a hash brown and inhaled them the second I got home.

Then that night, we went to Steak and Shake for dinner, and I got my self a burger with Swiss cheese and fries, yummy wonderful matchstick shaped fried goodness that they were. And each bite was better than the previous one.

Then on Sunday, I figured, why stop there? So I made us all organic macaroni and cheese and ate one bowl of it, and then inhaled as much of the rest of the pot as I could over the trash can, making scrapping noises to make it sound to Sweetie Pie like I was dumping it, rather than sucking up congealed macaroni and cheese through a straw directly into my blubbering thighs.

I fully intended on having steak with mashed potatoes for dinner on Sunday, but Sweetie Pie's parents called us to inquire about having dinner with them at Chili's and so I was able to make sure that my fat quota could be really surpassed by sharing an order of queso and then order a platter with three fried items on it: boneless chicken wings, Soutwest eggrolls and spinach artichoke dip.

Then I passed out in a food coma. And my pants rewarded me by being even tighter this morning, so that I look like Demi Moore on that old Vanity Fair cover where she was naked but had a tuxedo painted on her body.

As for the whole avoiding sex issue, I was having one of those weekends where I just wanted to beat the shit out of Sweetie Pie, just for being there. He was in a foul mood in my defense, which was only made worse by the fact that we had a teething, over-exhausted toddler who did nothing but whine, scream and complain the entire time. This made me want to beat Sweetie Pie to death with a wooden spoon, because after all, this is his genes at work. My genes are the ones that made Little Man discover the wonderfulness of chips and hot sauce.

That's right, people. My freaking toddler eats hot sauce. He fucking rocks. Where most toddlers are content eating bland foods like chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese, mine says "where the hell are the jalapenos, bitch?"



Thursday, January 25, 2007

Life Has Truly Changed Forever

One of the greatest parts of my industry is that I get to travel for work. Not often, like not those people who rack up a million miles a year in freaquent flyer points. But three or four times a year on average. Enough that I get to eat out for free for a few days and then watch TV in another town and ooh and aah over the fact that their ABC is on Channel two! And Ellen comes on at 11 p.m.!

And I get to smoke in a non-smoking hotel room and go to bed way to late and throw all of my clothes haphazardly on the second queen bed. And I get to walk through strange airports and feel important.

And usually, usually, there's one night where I get to order room service. I love room service. The fact that someone walks into my room with a tray full of food, saran wrap on my beverages and a silver dome thingie over my plate, to me that is truly one of the greatest things in life. Forget the fact that my spinach dip isn't very good and cost 13 dollars. It had a freaking silver dome thingie on it. And it was brought by a man or woman wearing a tuxedo. And I get to freaking eat it in bed. A lot of my favorite memories of my life are of the times I've eaten by myself, in a strange hotel room, some not so great food.

I'm sure, somewhere in the world, some homeless person is reading this and thinking "man, I'm glad I don't have that life."

Should homeless people have computers with wireless connections and choose to read laim ass blogs instead of trying to figure out how they're going to survive, that is.

My point is that I've been to some really exotic places on business trips during my life. Places like Aruba, St. Thomas, Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta. And Baltimore, which was really exotic, because I was there during a freaking hurricane that flooded the whole downtown area. Oh, and my hotel ran out of food, so that I had to live on gift shop candy bars one night.

Anyway. Unlike people who whine about business trips, I love them. I love the free frequent flyer miles, I love the escape, I love how important they make me feel, I loe the free food, I love the room service, I love the little shampoo bottles and tiny coffee maker in my hotel room. I love it all.

I need to interrupt this post to explain something else here. My dream, from the time I have been two years old, has been to go to Australia. I heart koala bears. Should I die before I get to hold a real live koala bear, I will be some seriously pissed off. And don't comment that they smell, or that they have fleas, or that they have horrendously long claws that hurt. I don't give a rat's ass. I love them. And you will never come in between me and my koalas, so don't even try.

Back to my original post. A week or two ago, one of my coworkers mentioned that she might not be able to go on her business trip in June, due to a wedding. This business trip is in Australia.

Now the pre-mom me pooped her pants and wanted to stab her other coworkers with her Slimfast straw so that they wouldn't be able to go. But the new mom me realized that this meant being away from the munchkin for a week and a half or two. And then I announced that since I was the most junior on the team in terms of seniority, that everyone else should get first dibs.

And the pre mom me wept inside and kicked me in the groin really, really hard.

And now this week, I've come to find out that work I was doing on an event in San Francisco had spiraled to a level that one of us in our department needed to go. And I promptly told one of my co-workers that since one of her big wigs was attending, she should go for the exposure.

Have I mentioned I love San Francisco? That I love cable cars? And hills? And fog? And rice-a-roni?

But I'm happy to not go. And yet I'm sad to not go. I don't regret having the Little Man, at any point. And I'd rather spend the time with him. But I do miss going on business trips.

This doesn't make me feel bitter. Or unhappy or negative. It's more of a neutral feeling of "yeah, that'd be fun. But I'll only go if the world is ending."

I know that this is temporary. In 12 years, Little Man will hate me and want nothing to do with me and I'll happily run off on business trips and smoke in the room, all while telling him on the phone that smoking kills, and that all those hoochies in his class are trying to get pregnant with his child and don't I dare find him even holding hands with one of them.



Wednesday, January 24, 2007

I May Very Well Work on That World Hunger Problem Next

So I've gone and done it. I swear, sometimes I think I'm so freaking amazing, that I could be on freaking Oprah. And I'd be on Oprah and she'd say "how do you do it." And I'd think about it for a second, because, really, the biggest part of my amazingness is how modest I am, and then I'd say "Oprah, I don't know. I don't even think about it. I guess it just comes to me naturally." And Oprah would nod gravely, flipping one her curls back, her $700 shoes dangling at the end of her perfectly manicured shoes, like even they can't believe how amazing I am.

And it all started this morning. At 5 a.m. I freaking set my alarm for 5 a.m., people.

And then I got up.

And then it happened.

I worked out

I'm not even shitting you right now.

Here I am, this woman with this fantastic career of sitting in a cubicle, the mother of a toddler who speaks 17 words, thank you very much. And now. Now. I'm a freaking athlete.

I know, I know. You wonder, how is this possible? Is she made of gold?

I don't know. It's hard for me to say really.

What I can tell you is that for 20 minutes, I sweated my ass off, while that blonde bitch on my Turbo Jam DVD bobbed and weaved and smiled. I got through it, because I knew that this brought me one step closer to my MILF goal.

And then the universe rewarded me by giving me a fantastic hair day. Not like celebrity hair, because that's ridiculous. I just mean fantastic hair day by my standards, which would be the equivalent to Britney Spears buying Cheetos hair.

In other fantastic news, I won't be dying of diabetes anytime soon. Because when I measured my waist that first time 10 days ago, I forgot the fact that I was just starting my period. And was as bloated as a whale. So I've lost three inches, none of which can be attributed to my diet or my one workout.

But if anyone asks, tell them I ate a few salads, worked out once and lost three inches around my waist, will you?



Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Sitting at a Crossroad With My Uterus

It's been a long time since I've talked about this. Most of you probably weren't reading my blog when I was pregnant and only some of you probably know this happened to me.

I had a great pregnancy. The kind of pregnancy that only exists in movies or in books. The kind of pregnancy that's nausea free, swelling free and the kind that causes you to only gain 22 pounds.

Not that I was a hot pregnant woman, because I looked like I had a beer gut almost my entire pregnancy. But it's hard to complain when your weight gain is really not that bad, despite a love for McDonald's.

And then when I was 38 weeks along, my whole body shut down. I didn't know this, because I'm an idiot who thought that excruciating pain was a normal part of a pregnancy, that screaming into a pillow from 10 p.m. until 4 a.m. meant that I had digestive problems.

I'm not sure why, looking back on it, I was so stupid. Why I'd wait two days to get help. And then, when I got help, I told them that it wasn't that bad, just a sharp pain. Which led them to put me on a fat-free diet, thinking that I had gall bladder issues.

I actually know what stemmed my attitude during this whole thing, and that's the fact that our medical insurance was so crappy. And I didn't want to cost us more money than I had to.

So instead, I took my life and my Little Man's life, and played Russina Roulette with them. But I won. The universe decided to cut me a break and gave me back my health and the most perfect baby boy with it.

And when we got home from the hospital, Sweetie Pie did some research about the terrible disease that nearly took my life, which is called HELLP, and he told me that he read that I shouldn't have any more children.

At the time, I got mad at him. "Screw you!" I said. "How dare you tell me when I'm holding your four-day old son that I can't have any more kids. Let me just enjoy this time."

And I did. For the last 16+ months, I've loved being Little Man's mom. And when I asked my OBGYN about the likelihood of my getting HELLP again with my second pregnancy, she equated it to getting struck by lightning twice.

But now, I'm ready to have another baby. And so yesterday, I decided to spend some time seriously researching the thing that tried to kill me. And it frightened the shit out of me. Basically, the message board of the HELLP Syndrome Association was filled with stories of women who'd had multiple incidents. Most of them had babies born too prematurely, like 23 weeks, and lost them. One woman said her doctor had given her a 25 percent chance of getting HELLP with her second pregnancay. And she got it. Then with her third, she was given a 50 percent chance. And she got it for a third time. But the worst part is, is that the site discussed the fact that there is a connection between women who develop HELLP during their pregnancy having a stroke 15 years later.

So now I'm Julia Roberts in Steel Magnolias. I remember the first time I saw that movie and I thought "How stupid. Why would she risk her life to have a baby?" But when I look at Little Man, I think to myself that even if I'd known that my liver would shut down, I would do it all over again.

But would I do it for a second child? That's where it gets fuzzy. Do I have the right to gamble with my life now, when I have a child who is counting on me? How could I take the chance to not watch my son grow up? Only to get to experience the miracle of life again? I don't think it's worth it. Even though the idea of not having more children breaks my heart.

Sure, I could adopt. But right now, I'm not Angelina Jolie. I always intended to have three kids and get to experience birthing each of them. And get to feel them kick me from the inside. And get to wear pants with elastic waists for six months.

I know that I can't rely on the Internet for all of my medical information. Obviously, this is a serious conversation I need to have with my new OBGYN, who's a mother of two boys herself. I'll ask her, would she chance it, if she were in my shoes, for a third baby.

Right now, I have no idea what I'll do. But I know that my heart breaks if the decision is not to go forth with more kids.



Monday, January 22, 2007

A Step Closer to Having My Baby Taken Away

I'm one of those mothers. The ones who are obsessed with her child knowing stuff and who's always concerned about him lagging behind. This isn't just because I tend to be quite competitive. It's also because most of our time spent together, Little Man and I, consists of sticking our tongues out at each other and laughing our asses off when the other one ends up drooling on themselves.

And a week ago, at Little Gym, it was "know your body day." Names like these always crack me up, since I have a dirty mind. Anyway, during the name game, where we tell our names' and our child's name, in a feeble attempt by the Little Gym to make sure that we try to use this time to socialize with others (which I do, but only with the unaccompanied cute dads for the most part), we were supposed to say the names and then say "we're going to point at our (enter body part that can't be used for sex here)." And then it happened. One mother said "we're going to point at our tummy," then she said to her daughter "where's your tummy?" And wouldn't you freaking know it, that kid pointed at her tummy.

Are all toddlers supposed to know these things?

So I've made it my mission to drill the names of body parts into Little Man's brain since that point. I'm like a sergeant of body parts, barking orders like "where's you ear?" at any time of day or night and you better point to the right one, or else, I may withhold blueberries from you.

We've officially got three parts down now. Nose (which Little Man points to by usually sticking a finger up his nostril), ear and mouth. The OCD crazy woman in me is relieved and figures we can go back to worrying about whether McSteamy will ever appear in nothing but a towel again.

And then this morning, Little Man was playing with two bouncy balls. I turned around to get his daycare bag readya and when I turned back, the balls were gone. And of course, before I could even stop myself, I asked him "where are your balls?"

He looked at me, confused for a second, and pointed at his mouth with one hand and his nose with the other, hoping that he'd be in the general vicinity.

Two thoughts went through my head when I was done laughing. First, I really hope Big Brother isn't monitoring my house, or else I have no chance of keeping this kid until he's 18. And second of all, Little Man better have a better idea of where his balls are before he starts dating. I'm just saying.



Friday, January 19, 2007

They Probably Think I'm a Little Crazy

I'm not exactly sure how this happens. But I always end up talking about the same things to the same people. I referred to this a while back, with my going on and on about Canada to this one guy at work.

Now, I've gone and done it again. Except this time, I keep talking about Sweetie Pie dying over and over again. Almost every lunch this week, it seems.

Oh yeah. And Little Man being gay.

How do these things happen, you ask.

Very easily if you're me.

For example, we were talking about the bad weather that we've had in Dallas. You know, icy conditions, dangerous driving conditions and so forth. I mentioned to my lunch friends that Sweetie Pie drove from Houston to Dallas in these horrible conditions in order to make it home, and that this had upset me, because he was risking his life. I then concluded the story by telling them that at least I've taken out a life insurance policy on him through work, so at least when he dies, now I'll have money at least so that Little Man and I don't end in the street.

I'm not exactly sure how Sweetie Pie dying came up the other two times this week, but somehow it did.

This seemed to bother my coworkers a little bit, one of them pointing out the fact that I mentioned Sweetie Pie's demise quite a bit lately. This led me to think that I better make sure the dude lives for a while, or else I'll have the CSI folks banging on my door and using witty one-liners about Canada and death.

Which leads me to Little Man being gay. I'm not opposed to Little Man being gay, as I love gay people. Do I wish for Little Man to be gay? Well, I don't think I'd force him to be gay anymore than I'd force my religious beliefs or my strong dislike of George W. on him. He's his own person, he'll do what he wants to do. All I did was point out to my coworkers that Little Man crawled into bed at nap time with another male toddler this week and that he walked around with one of my lingerie nighties on his head for half the morning on Wednesday's snow day. If they want to assume from that that I talk a lot about Little Man being gay, well then, aren't they the ones with the issues really?

This leads me to a complete separate point. My company is run by old white men. I'm all for casual Friday. I appreciate being able to wear jeans to work, I really do. The only way I'm more comfortable than wearing jeans is when I'm wearing pajamas. However, I might be willing to give up jeans day if I would no longer have to ride in the elevator with 60-year old white men who not only wear acid-wash jeans, but get them cuffed. And then wear them with white socks with white tennis shoes that are brighter than the sun.

I'm not kidding. My retina is forever damaged by the blinding sheen off those shoes. And where does one buy acid-washed jeans these days?

Or do these men only wear their jeans once a week to work, extending the life of those acid-washed jeans by 20 years?



Thursday, January 18, 2007

One Word Meme

I stole this from Emma in Canada because I can't think of a post today... I guess I need to tag folks, but I'm too lazy, so do it only if you feel like it. And talking with one word? I suck at it. Bad. This took me about 20 minutes for the record.

1. Where is your cell phone? Home
2. Your spouse? Driving
3. Your hair? Flat
4. Your mother? Crazy
5. Your father? Happy
6. Your favorite thing? Chocolate
7. Your dream last night? Non-existent
8. Your favorite drink? Mojito
9. Your dream car? H3
10. The room you are in? Cubicle
11. Your ex? Far
12. Your fear? Impalement
13. What do you want to be in 10 years? Happy
14. Who did you hang out with last night? Family
15. What you’re not? Awake
16. Muffins? Chocolate
17. One of your wish list items? Money
18. Your dinner tonight? Spaghetti
19. The last thing you ate? Slim-Fast
20. What are you wearing? Clothes
21. Your tv? Home
22. Your pet? Many
23. Your computer? Glowing
24. Your life? Good
25. Your mood? PMS
26. Your holidays? Bizarre
27. What are you thinking about right now? Answers
28. Your car? Jeep
29. Your work? Awaiting
30. Summer? Return!!!!
31. Your relationship status? Married
32. Your dream vacation? Australia
33. When is the last time you laughed? yesterday
34. Last time you cried? yesterday
35. School? Daycare



Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Really, I'm Not Judging, I'm Just Not Into That

So thanks to Emma in Canada, I've got me a site tracker. This has led me to realize that people are lurking on my blog (hi lurkers!), which is exciting, because, I've never been lurked before.

But here's what I've learned about some of you lurkers (well, I shouldn't assume. Maybe it's not the lurkers, maybe it's my friends and regular readers. But I'm pretty sure it's the lurkers). Some of you are into some mighty kinky shit. Now, I'm not judging. I have been selling sex toys for 4 1/2 years. So I'm not going to point fingers.

But I can say, even with a lie detector, that I have never used Google to search for dogs licking human penises.

I realize I don't have much of a sex drive since having a baby. But I'm pretty sure it's not abnormal for me to not be turned on by this concept. I love my dogs, but I don't love my dogs if you know what I'm saying.

My only question is what in the world have I posted about that would make Google think "dogs licking human penises? That's what you want? Oh, we've got JUST the blog for you."



Snow Day

Right now, ther's about 0.00002 inches of snow on the ground outside of my window. That's the equivalent of one millimeter of snow. In Canada, we call that spring. Here, it's called the end of the world.

All of the area schools are closed, and across the city, kids are gathering snow from all of the neighbor's yards to create a 10 inch tall snowman. School closings mean that daycare is closed too, so I am stuck working from home with a toddler, something that I'm used to, having tried to juggle a baby and work for 14 months.

Here's what we've accomplished so far:

- Fed Fruity Cheerios to the Dog for 30 minutes (joint effort between Little Man and I).
- Ate chocolate behind Little Man's back while he ate a waffle
- Put Little Man's slippers on Satan's Dog. Satan's Dog managed to get slippers off. Put slippers back on Satan's Dog. Repeated as long as toddler kept laughing or until dog threatened to move out.
- Sent boss an email saying how much work I've accomplished so far today. Made mental note to do all of the things I've claimed to have already done.
- Wondered if I'm going to miss Regis & Kelly and my soaps because of the stupid local newscasts talking about the 0.000002 inches of snow outside on and on and on for hours on end.
- Bought two tops from White House/Black Market online with Christmas money.
- Wondered what else I can buy online.
- Ate more chocolate behind Little Man's back.
- Watched some song on Nick Jr. called "I hope my Mama says yes" over and over again because as soon as it would end, Little Man would ask "more? More?"
- Patted self on back for brilliance of ordering Tivo and being able to rewind live TV and prevent temper tantrum from toddler who wants to hear song over and over.
- Heard Satan's Dog make a funny noise. Turned around just in time to see Satan's Dog throw up 50 pounds of dog food and a whole adult-sized black sock all over carpet right at top of the staircase.
- Wondered if 8 a.m. was too early for an Irish hot chocolate consisting of Bailey's and hot chocolate.
- Ate more chocolate.



Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Those Two Boys From Missouri Probably Aren't Screamers

Scene: Sweetie Pie and I in the car; Little Man's strapped in his back seat and is screaming his head off.

"I just can't imagine what those poor parents went through. To find out that your son who was kidnapped four years ago was living less than 100 mile away from you and was too terrified to tell anyone or break free...

- Yeah, we need to make it clear to Little Man that if someone ever snatches him, he needs to get the hell out of there, no matter how much someone says they're going to kills us. I'm a hunter, I've got guns, we'll take our chances.

(Little Man continues to scream in the backseat)

- Of course, if someone did kidnap Little Man, they'd probably return him within two days.

- Yeah, the creep would come to our door and say 'My Bad, please take him back'."



Monday, January 15, 2007

As Painful As It Looks...

It only looks like my child was slapped repeatedly on both cheeks. This is what a teething toddler whose evil molars are trying to come in looks like.

This was taken New Year's Day. There wasn't enough Infant's Tylenol in the world for him and there wasn't enough vodka for me.

By the way, I've added more pictures of the Little Man in my 16-month newsletter for him, as I was able to download all 168 of my pictures onto my computer. Whoo-hoo!



Not Sure Why, But It Kind of Tastes Like Sperm

So it's official. I'm on a diet.

This was triggered by 20/20. I watch it kind of religiously. Have ever since I was 14 years old, when me, my mom and my sisters used to watch it. It was the only day of the week we were allowed to watch TV past our bed times. So I guess just hearing the words 20/20 make me feel happy.

Of course, there were a number of party years where I wouldn't have been caught dead in my apartment on a Friday night. But now that I'm older and staying up past 10:30 seems really laughable, I'm back to watching 20/20 on Friday nights. I guess that's what some people would call going full circle.

Anyway, I was watching 20/20 on Friday night and there was a segment about this new diet sweeping the nation (which I was unaware of, because I'm too busy trying to find pictures of Britney's naked cooch in my spare time) and it was created by Dr. Oz, that weird-looking accented doctor that is Oprah's new BFF.

He wrote a book called "You on a diet." Of course, as all things that appear on TV, I must own it now. Because it sounded really, really swell on TV. One of the great things that they mentioned in the piece is that if you eat a handful of almonds or other nuts 20 minutes before you eat, you will eat a lot less. And they also said that the people who are most successful with diets are the people who eat the same thing for breakfast and lunch every day. Doing these two things guarantees you will look like Kate Hudson apparently.

Anyway, what really hit home is that they said that it wasn't about weight, it was about "Waist Management." That if you waist is 35 inches or above, you are at an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease and all of that other stuff that just isn't as fun as the hamburger with guacamole is.

So I paused the Tivo. Got myself up. Found the tape measurer. Dusted it off. And found out that my waist was exactly 35 inches.

How did this happen? I used to be a 25 or 26. Sure, this was when I was 18. But still. 9 inches in 13 years?

So that was it. I've started my new diet. It's inspired by Dr. Oz. But since I can't buy his book, I've created my own version of his diet. Here it is:

Breakfast at desk (between 8 & 8:30): French Vanilla Slimfast. I've also gotten some chocolate ones. I thought the vanillas would be good. But to me, they taste like a ginormous can of sperm. Some of you might think this is a good thing. I'm not one of them. Ginormous cup of Chai tea to cover disgusting taste and relax gag reflex.

10 a.m. Snack of one cut up apple.

Noon: Salad with organic greens, walnuts, raspberry and blue cheese. Half a hard boiled egg. Salad spritzed with new dressing spray that only has one calorie per spray. Attempt to limit myself to fewer than 50 sprays.

2:30 p.m. 10 almonds and chocolate mousse yogurt.

6:30 p.m. Whatever the hell I want at home (limit cookies to less than one pack.)


Take that waist! I'm this much closer to becoming a MILF!



Friday, January 12, 2007

My New Goal

This morning, I did something a little crazy. For casual Friday, instead of wearing my high-heeled boots with my jeans, the way I always do, I chose to wear my new pumps, the ones with the heel about two feet tall.

And as I walked from my car to the building, I felt freaking awesome. I felt like I might be the sexiest creature on Earth. For a second, I didn't worry about sucking in my gut or holding my chin high enough so my double chin is hidden. For a second, I felt like I could blow Beyonce off the planet with the sheer force of my sexiness.

That's when I made an important decision. I will become a MILF.

I will lose 20 pounds and I will buy clothes in stores meant for 20 year olds (like the shirt I'm wearing today) and Little Man's friends will all hang out at our house way too much.

It's a shallow goal. But I don't freaking care.

I love my new shoes.



Thursday, January 11, 2007

How Can It Only Be Thursday?

This is my first full week back at work. After all, I had the whole week of Christmas off and then I was only here Wednesday, Thursday and Friday last week. So this week, although I've enjoyed it, it feels like I haven't had a day off in three years.

It's amazing that I still love my job as much as I do. Every day, I wake up and realize that I'm a whole new Catwoman. That I no longer have very much in common with the 22 year-old me. I still have the 22 year-old me's ability to stick her foot in her mouth and her clumsiness. Because after all, those are the core values that make me Catwoman. Changing these would be like telling the Earth it needs to stop spinning around the sun.

But I know the 22-year old me would hate this job. The 22-year old me would lash out by having a crappy attitude, drinking every night, showing up late and spending most of the day sitting in her cubicle silently rolling her eyes and giving people the finger secretly.

The 31-year old me, on the other hand, thinks this job is just about the closest thing to freaking heaven. No one gives me crap. Like ever. And when they do give me crap, it's so small that I can only laugh at it. The 22-year old me used to not take any tiny ounce of crap. A single molecule of crap and her good attitude was out the window and Godzilla Catwoman would move in forever.

The 31-year old Catwoman leaves between 5 and 5:15 every day (our work hours are 8:30-5:30). Not because she has a bad attitude, but because, except for when she's blogging or reading other people's blogs or gossiping with her coworkers, the 31-year old Catwoman works her ass off and does about two day's worth of work in those good four hours of work. And the 31-year old Catwoman also gets here at about 7:50, simply because she's a mother now and the daycare is willing to feed the Little Man until 8 a.m. and as any mother will tell you, free food and having someone else try to feed your toddler is worth its weight in gold.

The 22-year old me would find this job extremely boring and lacking of excitement. The 31 year-old me loves the fact that anything I do is met with so much praise, that my little email "pat on the back" folder where I put congratulatory emails is so full that I'm now starting to think that I might be the Fergie of this place. And the 31-year old me thinks that being appreciated and getting to do good work is way better than being treated like crap at a job that impresses guys in bars.

And that's another reason the 22 year-old Catwoman would hate the 31 year-old Catwoman. I'm only interested in men who sleep in cribs right now. Men who are just over two-feet tall, poop themselves a few times a day and can blow some seriously kick ass raspberries.

I love the 31-year-old me way better.



PS: I still haven't found a solution to downloading my 160 pictures of the Little Man to update his 16-month newsletter, but I have added a couple of pictures that my mother and sister sent me. If you feel like scrolling down five posts to see my drooly favorite dude, well, now you can.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

If He Tried That During Grey's Anatomy, I'd Probably Have to Kill Him

So this week has been a crappy ass TV week. I hate the stupid awards shows. I'm happy just tuning in during the commercials of something else and reading about in People Magazine for all the gory details. But award season always means that shows are in repeats or moved and combine it with stupid college football, and I can't seem to find any of my shows.

And then tonight, just to make it worse, President Bush wants to freaking address the nation. Again. I know I talk a lot. But I sure as hell would never think that anything I have to say is important enough to make people miss whatever shows are on Wednesday nights (I can't think of what I watch on Wednesday nights. But I'm sure it's good.)

Did all of the other presidents do this? I mean, before Bush, I lived in Canada, so we were sheltered from this crap. But I don't remember my shows getting cancelled because Clinton wanted to talk. Except about that b.j. incident. But that was so saucy, even Canadian networks aired that.

So unless Bush wants to talk about illicit acts, I'm going to politely ask him to stay off my TV.

Or else I might have to whoop his ass. I'm not kidding.



Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Next Weekend, We'll Cook Up Some Road Kill And Paint the Rebel Flag On Our Cars

When I lived in Canada, I was aware of the terms white trash and trailer park, but to be honest with you, these were abstract concepts to me that I didn't actually know to be real. I thought it was kind of like the Easter Bunny: funny on paper, but can't possibly be true.

Then I moved to Texas, and one day, a couple of months after I'd moved here, I drove by a trailer park on my way to a client meeting. I stopped the car, fascinated. There it was, just like it'd been described: disheveled movable homes, with rusted cars with no tires as lawn ornaments.

I had to call Sweetie Pie to tell him. "I just saw my first trailer park!" I exclaimed. He was unimpressed. This is the equivalent of telling God that you just saw a unicorn. He'd just tell you "yeah, I know I invented it, remember?"

Sweetie Pie's family is very wealthy, but that doesn't mean that at their roots, they didn't come from the middle of Texas, where they lived on land and probably ate raccoon and squirrels to survive.

I'm not criticizing this lifestyle. I'm just telling a story.

The point is, that even though Sweetie Pie's parents live in a house that's twice as big as ours, with granite counter tops and three Targets within a 10-mile radius, Sweetie Pie's father still enjoys getting meat for free by sitting in a tree for hours wearing clothes that would so not appear on any runway in New York, Milan or Paris.

Last year, my dear father-in-law actually bought a ranch so that he and my dear husband could go prey on innocent animals more regularly. I've written about the fact that I've made my peace with this, as I'm sure the dead animals at the grocery store haven't had as much of a fulfilling life as the ones Sweetie Pie kills. And plus he doesn't believe in letting animals suffer, which from what PETA has to say, isn't how most of that grocery meat comes to be.

Anyway, I've refused to go to the ranch, as one, they had a trailer put on the land, so that when they go hunting they have somewhere to stay. This is against my genetic mix and my staying in a trailer could potentially cause my little tiny bit of snootiness, inherited from my French heritage, to dissolve in a screaming fit and turn to crepe batter.

I've also refused to go, because I was told by Sweetie Pie once that he saw a snake. I don't care that the snake was non-poisonous and was the president of his Greenpeace unit, I hate snakes. All snakes must die. End of story.

And the third reason I've refused to go is I'm a big-city girl. What the fuck am I going to do on a ranch in the middle of nowhere for two days? Where's the shopping? And TV with only one channel? Well, that's just inhumane! Someone call Amnesty International, because that's got to violate many a cruelty law.

But when we were driving back from the airport last week to head home, Sweetie Pie mentioned to his father that he needed to go to the ranch. Since he'd killed Bambi's dad on his last trip out, he'd had the carcass dropped off at some horrendous place called the Meat Processing Plant. Well, his meat was ready to be picked up, so he needed to go as soon as possible. Since he was also going to be going out of town the following weekend on business, I told him that Little Man and I would go down with him, since that's all he was going for.

And so on Saturday, we packed up the Little Man and headed down to the ranch.

The drive was mostly fine. Little Man tolerated four hours in his car seat pretty darn well. And when we got there, he visited the trailer and found more toddler hazards than safe things to play with.

He first found the large bullet collection, sorted by the Dewey system on the bookcase in the living room. He began to play with these boxes of bullets as if they were blocks, like I'm certain many white trash kids before him did.

The idea of him being blown to bits by the explosive was too much for me to bear, so all bullets were put away by myself.

I also discovered a saw, all 10,000 of its jagged teeth facing up at toddler arm level.

And of course, camper chairs, which adorn the living room the way some people have expensive leather chairs with fancy looking ottomans, are not the sturdiest surface for a toddler who is trying to climb on everything, despite his particularly short legs.

After settling in, we took the Little Man to see the animals. Now I must stop my story here to explain that during our trip to Canada, we drove to the Park Omega, a wonderful large wildlife park, where deer and hogs and buffaloes and other wild creatures will let you drive by them, and feed them carrots. But now, we're back in Texas. So this was the white trash Park Omega, which consisted of only cows. Which don't get me wrong, I love cows. I think they're cute. Especially little calves. Little Man worked on his imitation of cow noises, which I've learned he won't be working on Saturday Night Live anytime soon, as the closest he came was "Mmmmmmmm." Yes, that's a cow noise.

On Sunday, after a quick stop at the meat processing plant and Sweetie Pie spreading the meat amongst a standard cooler and a styrofoam cooler, we headed home.

We stopped for food when Little Man woke up from his nap and demanded to be fed right then and there. The only thing that sounded tempting at the next exit was the Dairy Queen. And this was where we discovered that we were in the armpit of America.

I can only describe that Dairy Queen as scary. The kind of place where each time Little Man would hover a French fry two inches above the scary looking table, I would take it away from him, convinced that the ebola virus germs could leap that high onto the fry.

A family walked in not long after us, with a teenaged daughter who acted like she was hot stuff. She was carrying a purse that she'd obviously made. The purse was made entirely of Capri Sun pouches. This purse was rectangular, with about four pouches glued side by side on each side, looking more like a toolbox than a purse, and she'd rolled up two other pouches and glued those over the two rows of pouches to act as handles.

The grandmother kept referring to her as the prettiest girl in town. I realize that the grandmother was probably biased, but let's just pretend that this was true. It'd be the equivalent of me being called the hottest girl in Dallas. I'm not saying I'm a dog. I'm average. The kind of person who doesn't make people react strongly towards her looks one way or the other, which I'm perfectly happy. I'm just saying that if I moved somewhere and became the hottest person in town, I'd be in one mighty ugly ass town.

And then this woman walked in with this little boy, who was probably about four years old. When the kid saw Little Man, he smiled. After all, that's how kids acknowledge each other. And when he smiled, that's when my heart stopped for a second. The kid's mouth was nothing but metal. I'm talking bright silver covering every single tooth, I guess that each baby tooth was so rotten that each surface of the tooth had to be covered in shiny metal so the kid would have something to chew with.

That's when I decided that I didn't want to wait to order me an Oreo blizzard and we high tailed it home as fast as we could.

I really don't have it in me to be white trash, apparently.



Monday, January 08, 2007

Britney Spears Doesn't Let Her Kids Drive

In my defense, it was a bad morning. I was stressed. I don't do well with stress. And even though, looking back on it, it really wasn't that big of a reason to get stressed, well you can't expect a leopard to change its spots.

On Saturday mornings, Little Man goes to a place named Little Gym. It's kind of expensive, but he's been in it since he was nine months old, because back when I was a stay-at-home mom, it meant that for an hour each week, someone else was in charge of entertaining my kid and I could sit on the rainbow colored mat and dream of margaritas and gin and tonics.

I signed the Little Man up for another semester, because I figured it'd give us something to do together on Saturday mornings, because most weekends, the three of us stare at each other, wondering what to do and then end up going to the mall spending money we don't have, just because, what the hell else is there to do in Dallas, especially in suburbia land.

Anyway, Saturday morning, Little Man decided to sleep in until a crazy time, so much so, that at 8:25 I woke him up because we were going to be late for Little Gym. The thing with toddlers is that you can't speed them up. Speeding up a toddler through breakfast is like trying to get a redneck to change his mind about gay marriage: it'll get very messy and there will be a lot of yelling.

We need to leave the house by 8:40 to get to class on time. At 8:42, I had Little Man dressed in some semblance of clothing that would get neither of us arrested and I began to proceed to try to get my bucking toddler into his car seat.

To re-enact my trying to strap in my pissed off toddler into that torture device known as the car seat, I ask you to take a wild cougar, kick it three times in the ribs, punch it in the nose and then attempt to put a harness around its cougar body. What's that? It's not possible? Well, you're obviously not a mother then.

By 8:47, I have a purple, but safe, toddler in the back seat and I begin to proceed to back out of the garage. I whip down my driveway as a speed close to Mach 3, and as the garage door is almost closed, my dumb cat decides to walk out, triggering the garage opener's (and closer) safety device, therefore re-opening my slower-than-molasses garage door.

My cat then proceeds to stand there, pontificating the purpose of life and whether brown mice taste better than grey mice.

I roll down my window and yell at her to get out of the way. I'm pretty sure an f-bomb was dropped. This stops the screaming toddler from screaming, because he's thinking something way more interesting than his fit is happening, and he should pay attention for his future therapy sessions.

The cat refuses to budge despite my horrific tongue lashing directed at her and all of her ancestors.

I'm left with no choice. I get out of the car and proceed to chase the cat like I'm going to kill it and have it for dinner. The cat runs away, thinking that I've officially lost my mind and that it might be time for her to look for some crazy cat woman with 90 cats to move into and be neglected there instead of our horrible home.

Satisfied that I can finally make it to that damn Little Gym class, I turn around and watch my Jeep heading down the road with Little Man still in its back.

It seems that in my haste to get out of the car, I forgot to put it in Park. And the stupid Jeep doesn't realize that when no driver's in the car, you should stay put. I watch my Jeep slowly roll towards the curb and relieved, think to myself that Little Man will just stop there and wait for me.

But no, this is my life and physics don't exist in it. My Jeep, used to going over curbs because of my bad driving, rolls over the curb like if it's a pebble and proceeds to roll across our neighbor's yard, heading straight for their Lexus SUV, apparently convinced that it's found true love.

I beging to run after my Jeep, in my high-heeled boots, may I add (there are cute dads in the class, a girl's got to look cute, even with unbrushed hair and a stained sweater) and I can see Little Man excitedly waving his arms and laughing at me as I pass him.

I throw myself in my Jeep and press the brake pedal, a mere five or six feet from the new neighbors (who I've yet to meet) Lexus.

Little Man applauds. I turn to him, stunned, and he baby signs "more? more?"

I sit there for a second, shit myself, wish for a cigarette and then calmly drive out of the neighbors' yard, close my garage door and get us to Little Gym a mere three minutes late, still in time for a rousing version of 'Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes."



Friday, January 05, 2007

At Least His Legacy Won't Ever Die

It was only the second day we were in Canada when it happened. We were in bed already, although I can't remember if I'd already fallen asleep or not.

The phone rang. It's never good news when the phone rings after everyone's gone to bed. I silently hoped that it was my sister's sister-in-law who was visiting France and kept getting the time difference wrong and calling my sister at crazy hours. Then my sister appeared in the staircase towards our room. "It's for Sweetie Pie," she said. "It's his dad."

And I knew right then, that the only thing it could be is that his grandfather had passed away.

I woke Sweetie Pie up and handed him the phone.

As I could only hear his side of the conversation, all I heard was "no he didn't. No he didn't. Did he really?"

After he hung up the phone, Sweetie Pie just laid there silently in the dark, the only sound my breaking heart beating in my throat.

"What happened," I asked, the wait too interminable for Instant Gratification Girl.

"My grandfather shot himself to death tonight."

I remember freezing in shock for a second, the weight of the words too much for my brain to consume in one second. Surely this couldn't be true. Surely a man who'd lived 80-years of his life as the patriarch of a family, who knew everyone and his dog in town, who had the greatest, heartiest laugh, who drove me nuts trying to get me to feed my newborn sun Carnation Milk and Kero syrup didn't die because he got up from bed and decided to end it all.

I've never known anyone who's commited suicide. To me, it's something you'd hear about on ABC After School movies. It's something I briefly considered when my teenage angst and misery seemed to much to bear or my grades weren't up to par and I thought my mother couldn't yell at me if I was dead (I'm now convinced she'd find a way even if I was beyond the grave), but could have never done, because at least I know what to expect on this side. But to find out someone who made that oh-so-final decision to end it all, well, I just can't explain how it feels.

There was sadness, of course. And then anger for him doing it while we were on vacation, after all, couldn't he just wait another six days? And then there was the horrible thought that his new wife was woken by the gun shot and walked into wherever he chose to do it and had to look at something no one should ever have to see. And then there was the realization that Little Man would never get to know the man who he was named after. We'll only be able to show him pictures of himself sitting on an old man's lap two days before he died. I probably won't tell him tat he shot himself. I might just say he died of a broken heart, since he'd never been the same as when his true love, his wife of 55 years, died almost two years before. But Little Man won't have any memories of the man. And when I realized this in my car yesterday, I actually cried for the first time.

Sweetie Pie tried desperately to get back to Dallas for the funeral, but unfortunately, it was set for two days after the death and being that it happened during the holidays, he was only able to book himself on a flight the night before the funeral. The day of his departure, he took a Greyhound bus for two-and-a-half hours, he the man who despises public transportation even more than broccoli. And one he arrived at the airport, 20 minutes before his flight was scheduled to depart, it was suddenly cancelled. As this was the last flight from Montreal to Dallas that night, the earliest he could land in Dallas the next day due to most flights being oversold was an hour after the funeral was scheduled to begin.

Defeated, Sweetie Pie rented a car and drove back to Ottawa to try to salvage what was left of our vacation.

My most vivid memory of the entire event will be that during Little Man's entire life, his great-grandfather had try to forcefeed him mashed potatoes. I'd said no when he was three months old and four months old and then when he tried at six months old even though I told him not to, Little Man simply spit it out.

From that point on, no matter how much the old man would try, Little Man wanted nothing to do with mashed potatoes, disgusted by their mushy texture.

But the day that Sweetie Pie was trying to get back home, my father made mashed potatoes for dinner. "Little Man must love mashed potatoes," he inquired. I shook my head and sadly told him about Sweetie Pie's grandfather trying oh so many times to feed Little Man his specialty.

My father placed a small mound of mashed potatoes on Little Man's tray, who looked at it for a second and then proceeded to gobble it up and asked for more.

I was stunned. But my father said "you know that this is a sign from the grandfather to tell you that everything is fine."

Everything isn't quite fine. But I'm glad to be able to feel that the old man is finally at peace.



Thursday, January 04, 2007

Sixteen Months: My Letter to Little Man

We survived another month. And a busy month this was, what with your first full month of daycare (at a new school, might I add), Christmas, another trip to Canada and all the craziness that comes with life.

It's been so fun to watch you experience Christmas this year. The first few days we had the Christmas tree up, you'd ooh and aah every time you'd wake up and we'd walk you past the tree. And when we got home and turned the tree on, you'd clap or oooh at it, like if it was the Rockefeller Center tree.

I made the mistake of buying you an advent calendar. I thought it'd be so exciting, to open the little cardboard door each day and let you get excited over the little chocolate behind it. But you couldn't comprehend why I wouldn't open more than one door per day and kept demanding more chocolate, not satisfied by the 0.000002 ounce piece that I'd given you. This led me to wait three or four days in between door openings to minimize the chances of tantrums.

And then, on the actual present opening event, we got to experience your anal-retentive side. You'd rip the paper, as you'd practiced for weeks opening the presents under the tree, (forcing me try to tape them back up again when you were asleep so that half of them had more tape than paper on them). But you don't rip the way we do. You'd rip a two-inch strip of paper and get up to go discard it in the trash can. Then you'd come back to the present, rip another two-inch strip, and get up again to go discard it. Afraid that our rotting carcasses would be found next to a pile of half-opened gifts, I took it upon myself to help you to speed up the process. Luckily for me, you were filled with enough Christmas spirit to tolerate my insubordination.

Your favorite present this year was your tent. It's huge and made to look like an igloo and unfortunately for us, it was the first one we allowed you to open and then your dad decided to assemble it right away for you. This would have been fine if you hadn't decided to move into the tent, right there and then. From that point on, we'd put presents in the doorway, only to have you pull them into the tent and throw them out if they were not worthy of your tent. Most of the pictures from that day are of you standing in your tent, the bottom of your face the only part visible because the doorway is made for a child after all.

Your vocabulary has completely exploded this past month. You still talk in your native American language a lot of times and get mad if we don't understand you, resulting in our developing an array of non-threatening responses like "really?" "is that so?" and "tell me about it!" all of which seem to not piss you off and make us feel like we may have a chance at surviving the choppy waters of toddlerhood. You continue to pick the easiest word in French or English, although you'll try your hand at difficult words if we say them often enough. You are the king of repetition these days, so we always have to be careful about what is said around you, or else chance you saying something that shouldn't be said at a really bad time.

And there's the head shaking. This is a skill we figure you learned at day care, because neither your father nor I are big head shakers. And because you learned this skill from a fellow toddler, your interpretation of it is quite hysterical, as you like to shake your whole body along with your head, making you look like a real life bobblehead.

Did I mention how much you love to fly? On the plane, you could stare at the world going by for the rest of your life if we'd let you. When we flew to Canada, after we landed you turned to me and signed "more? more?"

You're still the brightest spot in my life. I love picking you up from daycare, because, most of the time, you run to me and pretend I'm the best part of your day too. I say most of the time, because should I get there while your music teacher is playing a song for your class, you'll acknowledge me with a nod and then turn back to her, as I'm expected to wait until "The Farmer in the Dell" is over before getting a hug.

Your teachers love you, as they should. They call you "The Little Brad Pitt," constantly going on and on about how good looking you are. And then there's the girls in the class, who fawn over you, like if you were the centerfold of American Baby. But none of this has gone to your head, mind you. You still prefer the company of your loyal stuffed frog, Max, kissing his face over and over again, especially in your sleep.

Your teacher did the best job ever at summarizing you. And when she said it, I knew that it was the words I'd been looking to properly describe you from the day you were born and that they would be included in this month's newsletter. She said "when Little Man is happy, the whole world is a little brighter; but when he's not happy, the whole world knows it."

I love you, dark clouds, bright smiles and everything in between.



Wednesday, January 03, 2007

That Poop Smell? That Would Be Me at US Customs

There aren't many things in life that scare me. Sure, there's snakes. And cliff edges with no rail. And Paris Hilton's hair weaves. But really, that's all minor stuff.

The one thing that scares me, is customs. Most customs officers, really, but something about US customs officers makes me shit my pants every single time. I don't know what it is. Actually, I do know what it is. It's the fact that I'm treated like a terrorist every single time I try to enter the country. And this isn't just post 9/11. I'm talking I've had issues with them questioning my every intention of coming to the US from my first business trip to Atlanta when I was a young and innocent 23-year old.

I don't know if they enter a note in the system every time they have a suspicion about you, so that now, I have a long laundry list of "she's weird" next to my smiling picture in the system. Maybe they have naked pictures of me and they're so horrified by the state of my ass and lower abdominal, they hesitate to let me back in.

Whatever their reason might be, it does nothing to alleviate my fear of them. And because I'm so petrified, I screw myself over every time. yesterday, upon departing Montreal, our not-so-friendly US customs officer asks if all of us are US citizens. He mumbled. I heard the word residents. So I say yes. Two seconds later, he is brandishing my Canadian passport in the air, like it's his roommate's filthy underwear. "You're not a citizen," he spits.

"Uhm, no," I acknowledge, confused. "I'm a resident."

"That's not the same thing," he smirks, reminding me that I should feel inferior for not being born in the land of the free and the supersize value meal.

Next thing I know, I'm being asked 50 questions about my green card and my answers apparently aren't enough to get past the evil troll to the land of magic beans.

And so I get brought to a room that can only be described as purgatory, as a dozen immigrants wait to find out if they will be allowed to continue on their journey.

And there we wait, for half an hour. With a toddler. Who really, really wants to run behind the counter and play in the customs' officers' offices. We try to explain to him that he's about to get his Maman deported forever. He doesn't care. He'll sell out his own mother for five-minutes of fun, he is a toddler afterwards.

I wait, trying to hold my weakening intestines together. Plus I have a very, very full bladder that was begging to be emptied while we were waiting in line for an hour to be checked in for our flight. It's now screaming at me, threatening to spill all over Uncle Sam's pretty blue hard plastic chairs.

Half an hour later, a gentleman comes out and apologizes for my being detained, saying there was nothing wrong with my paperwork. I thank him and want to beg him to put a note in my customs file that says something like "cool chick. And has very smooth-looking elbows and a very strong bladder. Let in with no questions."

And so we continue on our journey home. Only to board a plane and sit behind Celine Dion for 3 and a half hours.

Fine, it wasn't actually Celine Dion. Just some Quebecker 40-year old woman who sang along with her iPod at the top of her lungs while I was trying to get Little Man to sleep. Surely murdering someone to protect your child's hearing and your sanity isn't a crime in this country?

I want to end this post by letting you know that my mother only flipped out once. She called me an inconsiderate evil person who always treats her like she has Alzheimer's, simply because I pointed out that Newsworld, the Canadian CNN, had already played the Sydney Australia fireworks five minutes before and she'd already made the comment "oh, Sydney had its fireworks."

For the record, she had already seen the story. She had already made the comment. And me saying "yeah, I know, you already said it five minutes ago when they ran that story for the hundredth time then" does not make me the Canadian equivalent to Saddam Hussein.

Well, maybe it does and that's why US Customs hates me so much.

Happy New Year!