Friday, November 05, 2004

friends and enemies

L.H. was concerned about D.D.'s mental health when he found a picture she had drawn of a child in a cherry-covered dress, frowning and saying, "I am weird." He wasn't sure he felt any better when I explained that it was a boy from her class. She had "forced" him into these girl's clothes (oddly enough, her favorite dress from her grandma). I ascribe it to the on-going battle of the sexes at her school and am glad that she used her pen for drawing and not stabbing.

Since school is out for the week (Fall Holiday), maybe she is missing her arch-enemies. She has seen her friends a few times, and they got along ok, so maybe she just needed to get that meanness out of her system. As long as she doesn't take it out on us.

L.H. and I have been having opposite responses to the US election. He has been really agitated and upset, and I've been plugging up my ears and saying, "na na na na na na na". I can't imagine what the election fatigue in the US must be like; we didn't have the deluge of ads that USians got. And that, gentle readers, will probably be the last thing I have to say on the topic.

My FIL sent L.H. a polaroid of a biker that was taken back in the day when FIL was an undercover narcotics agent, then he pointed out how much he thought L.H. looked like this person. FIL really knows how to give a compliment. God knows what he'll come out with next—probably a comparison with Manson. He has totally lost touch with social norms and all other aspects of reality. I could really go on, but I think this should now go on the tabu topics list, or at least on the only-over-the-phone-with-the-relatives list.

(Can you see where D.D. may come by her need to get the meanness out?)

Sometimes I feel like turning off the world and losing myself in a book. Two weeks into the semester is not a good time for that feeling to come knocking, but it's a bit like PMS—I can't prevent it and just have to ride it out. I have learned that skimming books satisfies the itch, but it still takes a while to read Lord of the Rings. I haven't even felt like blogging (heaven forbid!). I guess this post is an indicator that I'm about over it.

Weather-bitching level: n.a.
I think that barring a blizzard, the weather will be predictably cold and possibly wet from now until March, so what's the point trying to put it on a scale? I'll reserve my weather comments for exceptionally unusual weather, like sunshine (which we had a little of today).

Sunday, October 31, 2004

Loverly Husband

My husband (L.H.) really is a nice man. When darling daughter (D.D.) has a friend over, he plays games with the two of them. And when the mom comes to pick her up, he chats her up for 20 or 30 minutes because he is helping her make contacts in the U.S. for an exchange program (she teaches H.S. English).

Personally, I'm just not that full of the milk of human kindness. In my case, it would be more like buttermilk. L.H. thinks I'm kind of shy, or maybe I'm holding back because of the language thing, but really, I think I'm just not that friendly.

It takes me a while to warm up to people; at my last job, it took me 2 or 3 months of seeing the same people day in and day out before I could let my innate wackiness shine through. I'm just not around anyone that much these days, so I don't see myself finding many "kindred spirits" (as Anne Shirley of Green Gables would say) any time soon. Also, humor doesn't always translate well, and I'm not sure what people here would make of my sarcastic sense of humor.

D.D. is lucky that she has one outgoing parent anyway. L.H. reminds me a bit of my mom in that respect. I found it embarrassing as a kid for her to be chatting up people in line at the grocery store, and now I'm married to a man with the same trait. He can tell me all about the neighbors, even ones not in our building, and about the parents of D.D.'s classmates because he's actually held one or more conversations with them. I usually just smile and nod in passing.

What's funny is that L.H. always thought of himself as introverted as a kid. I think that's because his dad tends to be fairly anti-social and kind of squished his kids into that mold when they were little. Nowadays we joke that L.H. is an extrovert who was raised as an introvert.

Today's Halloween party proves the point. I was ready to chuck all 11 kids out the door after an hour, but he kept them moving from one activity to the next with impressive patience. He was even so kind as to walk home a couple of kids (D.D. went home with one of them to play some more). I told him even before he left that I'd rather clean up after 50 kids than have to deal with any of them a minute longer.

My grandmother and mother keep telling me that I'm such a good mom and that I should have had more kids. The reason I'm such a good mom is *because* I only have one kid. I'll admit it: I'm selfish. I need some time to myself, if not physically then mentally apart from my family, and multiple children doesn't seem conducive to that. MIL told me of a woman of her online acquaintance with 9 children! That first caesarean section must have come with a labotomy!

I'll be the first one to admit that L.H. has oodles and gobs more patience than I; I can give D.D. boundless love and lots of silliness, and I know a trick or two to help her when she is in a bad mood or upset, but L.H. is the one who will sit on the floor and play Barbies with her. He should be in line for sainthood for that alone.

Weather-bitching update: 0.5
Clouds, some sun, no rain. It could have been worse.