Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Oh Boy, Oh Boy

I have several confessions to make.

I hate football. Loathe, detest, and despise it. I'm no real fan of sports, in general, unless you count yoga, and the Yankees. Yankee baseball I can deal with.

I like my nature safely confined to manicured, relatively-bug free backyards with concrete patios, or behind clean glass. Clean glass containing air-conditioned air.

I can't imagine getting up at the crack of dawn to go fishing. I think I'd rather get up at the crack of dawn to clean a basement.

If my life depended on athletic prowess, this would be my eulogy.

I like pink.

I still have all my Barbie dolls. Some of them are on display in my home. And I keep acquiring MORE.

I still have all of the following, too: Cabbage Patch Kids, baby dolls, a bride doll (still on display in my old bedroom in my parents' home), play lipstick, and play purses.

Not too many years ago, I bought a tiny vintage apron for my theoretical future daughter. It was just too cute to resist.

Basically, I'm a girly girl.

And now I have two sons.

I am a bit intimidated by this.

I know many mothers without daughters fear missing out on things like clothes shopping, or wedding planning. These are things I can live without. My own wedding planning was extensive enough to carry me through the rest of my life. I frequently prefer to shop alone.

I am worried, however, that I will someday have an allergic reaction to the cloud of testosterone that will undoubtedly form near the crown moldings in my home. I may eventually have a nervous breakdown from having to empty the pockets of the pants of all the male members of my family prior to doing laundry (I always empty my own pockets before putting my pants in the hamper). I am worried I will someday fall into the toilet after the seat gets stuck in a permanently lifted position. I am worried that images of basketball games will get burned into the picture tubes of my television, and will be visible even when I turn the channel to Lifetime. Speaking of lifetimes, I fear for one filled with future mockings aimed at me due to my fondness for Us Weekly and Glamour's Do's and Don'ts.

Ty is a good sport. He rented The Devil Wears Prada for me and even watched it with me, and he's always patient whenever I scrutinize Tori Spelling's augmented cleavage gap out loud, or disappear into the shoe section at Lord & Taylor.

Mostly, though, I'm worried about living in a house where no one really, truly gets me on a fundamental level. And I'm worried about not having anything in common with my children. And I'm worried about them not respecting the things that interest me. Even the frivolous things--respecting them for the fluffy treats that they are.

I do have some traditionally-masculine traits: lawyering, for one. An interest in science. An appreciation for sarcasm and parody. A fascination with surgery, taxidermy, corpses, and the macabre. And gendered-activity distinction lines get blurred more and more. I just hope that I have enough within me, on a human level, separate from maleness or femaleness, that my children will want to be friends with me. At least until they hit 13; then, all bets are off.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Travels with Arabella

(I apologize for my extended absence. I have been on a road trip visiting Ty's family. I had planned to blog along the way, but, alas, there wasn't any wireless to be had.)

The first person to email me the correct answers will win--oh, I don't know; a minor prize of some sort. What ever happened to the joy of just playing??? ;)

1.) How many members of Arabella's family woke up sick on the morning of their trip?

a) 1
b) 2
c) 3
d) 4

2.) Arabella did NOT engage in which of the following activities in the car?

a) pumping breastmilk
b) trimming her toenails
c) polishing her toenails
d) playing hand-held video games
e) playing Sudoku
f) eating (hey, I've got to give some freebies)

3.) Which of the following is NOT the name of an actual eating establishment that Arabella encountered on her trip?

a) De Vinci's
b) Johnny Carino's
c) Quaker Steak 'n Lube
d) Uncle Luigi's

4.) How long did it take Arabella to disassemble the second Pack 'n Play ?

a) 3 minutes
b) 7 minutes
c) 11 minutes
d) 19 minutes

5.) At one point, Arabella sang to her children to soothe them. How many verses of "Baby Beluga" did she sing?

a) 3
b) 6
c) 12
d) 17

6.) When did Arabella get asked to show her ID?

a) when buying Sudafed
b) when ordering a girly drink in a chain restaurant
c) when pulled over by a State Trooper
d) when entering an office building

7.) Approximately how much cheaper is a good massage in the Midwest than in New York City?

a) $25
b) $50
c) $75
d) $0

8.) Generic Desitin was available for $1.74 a tube. How many tubes did Arabella buy?

a) 1
b) 2
c) 3
d) 4

Thanks for playing!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Medicine Ball

I had my first medicine-cabinet-away-from-home during my senior year of college. Even with only one de-facto bathroom to five bedrooms (the house's spare half bath gradually became the exclusive domain of the bulimic housemate who would disappear into it for lengthy periods of time), our situation was a major upgrade from the coed dorm bathrooms of the previous three years. Until then, afraid of having my personal hygiene implements misappropriated from the communal cubbies and used to shave someone else's dubiously-clean balls, I had carried them with me to and from the bathroom in a small plastic basket every time I wanted to use them, which was constantly.

The following year brought with it an embarrassment of riches--my own apartment, and, almost as good, my own huge, half-wall, three-paneled medicine cabinet with mirrors that could be angled so that one could scrutinize one's French twist! I wasted no time in filling it with every conceivable bottle and jar and bar and potion and gel. When phone conversations grew lengthy, I would often take the phone in the bathroom with me and chat as I repeatedly opened and closed the cabinets, admiring my stock of products and taking in every square centimeter of space with awe.

I soon moved into a nicer, better apartment. The stove burners were terrific, which was wonderful news for my budding culinary skills. The one drawback, though, was reduced medicine cabinet space. Fortunately, there were shelves right outside the bathroom that fulfilled almost the same purpose, so my awesome product collection traveled with me, intact. A small hand-held mirror served as a fine French-twist-scrutinizing supplement.

Then, the oldest story in the universe re-enacted itself for the trillionth time. You know--girl meets boy, girl marries boy, girl and boy move in together, and girl loses still more medicine cabinet space. This time, I had to pare down and get creative. Infrequently-used products were banished to shelves near the kitchen. My tallest bottles found a new home concealed in the built-in wall hamper, ingeniously, I thought.

Now, with two little boys, my days of having my own even-modest medicine cabinet are numbered. It's only a matter of time before lipsticks and luxe eye creams get shoved aside to make room for economy-sized Band-Aids, bubblegum-flavored toddler toothpaste, and foaming, brightly-colored hand soap in a dispenser shaped like a hippopotamus.

So, I'm starting my own meme. You know what you always want to do at parties? Well, below is a photograph of the interior of my medicine cabinet exactly as it appears this morning, August 15, 2007. I challenge you to post a photo of your own. No cheating--no moving aside the Monistat, no hiding the nipple cream. Just a photo of your toiletries, cosmetics, etc., in all their stark, beautiful nakedness.
Questions? Post them in the comments.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Phoning it in

For the record, I have possessed cellphones at all times for approximately eight years, and I have never once lost or damaged a cellphone, but I have, on several occasions, been inconvenienced by someone else losing or damaging a cellphone, and this morning was basically the LAST STRAW, and I support the idea of implanting people with cellphone chips if it means that I will never ever again have to stand there in the hallway in my bare feet sweating fenugreek and calling a missing cellphone while one child drools all over my crisp $75 Brooks Brothers shirt and his brother screams and cries and three or four people need to walk exactly where I'm standing thereby forcing me to shift position as I balance said child(ren) while I dodge errant construction nails and all the while hunt unsuccessfully for the phantom phone at the bottom of a gooey, gooey diaper bag.