Friday, October 28, 2005

A Groovy Kind of Fall

It looks like the Italian ice cream-mongers have fled to warmer climes. Where once fantastical concoctions of frozen dairy products graced the tables, now stand racks of leather goods, cheap clothing, and Lebkuchen. But the joke’s on them! It has turned warm-ish, enough so that dandelions are sprouting up again, aphids have swarmed our still-blooming geraniums, and I can walk outdoors in my shirt sleeves. That means we’ve had sunshine and temps in the 60s. On a drizzly but warm day, I overhead an elderly auditor in one of my classes remark that it felt like summer had broken out again. Well, given the kind of summer we had, I guess he’s right.

I saw a couple of ads in the window of a department store for Paris Hilton’s new perfume; I would now like to scrub my brain with bleach and never shop in that store again.

Luckily, I was able to counteract the effects somewhat by discovering the print ad for the men’s deodorant commercial I was banging on about previously. Turns out it’s from Rexona. The photo on their web site shows men commuting via bus-roof, but the print ad shows them commuting by hanging from the open door and landing skids on a helicopter.

I really should stop window-shopping, because I am frequently disturbed by what I see. For example, the bra with the x-straps on each side. The bottom legs of the x are attached on each side of the cup; the middle of the x sits at about the collarbone. God knows what the back looks like with all the straps going hither and thither. It makes me wonder who would want to strap down the tops of their breasts after enclosing the rest in a cute little demi-cup. Must have been designed by a man.

The wedding shop finally came through with a beautiful dress—in an ugly green-yellow crayon color. The dress itself was lovely—strapless but with one decorative (not structural) strap made of small silk flowers; the empress-style bodice had vertical pleating all the way around; and the skirt was straight but not tight (not something someone my height can carry off—sob!). Then they had to go and ruin it with the steno-pad paper color.

I generally make it a rule not to comment on people I know personally, but some people practically put a gun to your head. The grandma of one of D.D.’s classmates came to pick her up from school while I was waiting for D.D. I saw her walking up the stairs with a grumpy frown on her face; combined with the black, fuzzy sweater with red, black-spotted shoulders, I couldn’t help but think she looked like a ladybug with a bad attitude.

I might laugh at drivers getting speeding tickets and old ladies in ladybug clothing, but there is a line even I will not cross. I saw a man who had injured himself tripping over a knee-high chain that he hadn’t seen; it surrounds a small square near the mayor’s offices, so I guess it’s to keep people from trying to park there. Anyhow, at first I thought he was having a heart attack, because he was sitting on the ground in the midst of the pile of stuff he had been carrying and rubbing his ribcage on the left side. But when I offered to help him, he seemed as equally embarrassed as hurt. I could totally see myself doing that—which is one reason why I spend a lot of time scanning the ground and my immediate surroundings when I walk (and also the dog poo)—so there’s no way I would make fun of him. Drat my tender side!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Letting It Down Easy

Dear Computer,

I love you, but I can’t keep seeing you. The hours and hours of mind-numbing entertainment with you were great, but now I’ve got to move on. We’ll still see each other once in a while, but we’ll be more like work-friends who don’t socialize outside the office, and less like real friends that happen to work together but go to each other’s kids’ birthday parties, whose husbands fool around on the guitar and brew beer together, who laugh themselves into asphyxiation watching Waking Ned (Divine) together.

No, it’s strictly a working relationship now: a little email, some word-processing, a bit of Internet research, and the occasional blog post, but that’s it. No more evenings spent surfing the web and other people’s blogs; no more hours of solitaire; no more 26 levels of Homing Hippogriffs.

I hope you understand.


Ps. Lovely Husband hasn’t abandoned you. I hope you like Democracy Now webcasts, though.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

More Musical Bitching

The most horrible remake of Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” has been playing in an endless loop on Nick. Somehow this girl group from The Netherlands, Bad Candy, has managed to suck all the life out of what started as a really fun, upbeat song, and have turned it into a dull, plodding travesty of pop music. I just hope they don’t get their mitts on “She Bop.”

It hasn’t gotten down to freezing at night yet, so I put my Thanksgiving cactus back outside. I went out to put some laundry in the drier (on the lower balcony), and I noticed that what I had first taken to be the buds that grow into leaves, are actually buds that grow into flowers. I am going to have about 30 blooms on this baby in a couple of weeks, and I will post a picture here to prove to the Internets that I am *not* a plant killer.

I survived the first week back to school, but D.D. starts her first school holiday at the end of next week, which means we’ll start a week-plus of kid juggling. That, I might not survive.

We’ve had rain off and on since Wednesday (it’s “on” full-blast as I type), but have only been sprinkled on while out and about, thank goodness. The first time, D.D. wanted to know why God couldn’t go pee on some other continent. So now it’s a running joke that God is taking a whiz when it rains:
“Ha, ha, Mom! You’ve got God-pee on your glasses!”
“Yeah, well, you’ve got it on your jacket.”
“That means it’s holy.”
We’re a whole family of heetherns.

We’ve decided that it isn’t worth the time and money to light the tile oven this winter. It did not play a very major role in keeping the house warm last year, and it was a pain to try to keep going. So we’re holding on to the last few sticks of firewood for a special occasion.

And to fill out this banal bit of fluff I like to call a blog post, I’ve decided to include something I jotted down as a writing exercise during a break in one of my classes. I call it, “Classmate”.
diffident but annoying; sharp, nervous movements as he shifted from foot to foot, drifting back and forth between the electronics cabinet and the podium, making me want to glue his feet to the floor