30 April 2008

The opposite of "funny"

I have been on a quest of Holy Grail proportions (apparently). For a couple of months now, I have been looking for a specific style of shoe. I recently came to the conclusion that what I wanted was so far out of style, it was time to start looking at used clothing stores. Today, I decided to take a trip to the Buffalo Exchange in Berkeley.

As I circled the block looking for a parking space, I noticed a Berkeley police officer behind me. Of course, I became the perfect driver - fully stopping for three seconds at each stop sign, being extra cautious of pedestrians, that sort of thing. I found an excellent parking spot right in front of the store, signal (of course), and pulled in. I looked down, put the car in park, and when I looked up again, I noticed that the cop was sitting next to me. He motioned for me to roll down my window.

Instantly on guard, and nervous, I began reviewing my driving for the last five minutes. I rolled down the window, and flashed my most innocent grin (no really, I have one, just ask my daddy).

"Good afternoon, ma'am"
"um.. hi"
"oh, don't worry, nothing to be nervous about."
"um... ok..."
"does your son go to [specific school name] in [specific town]"

At that point, I think he must have realized he'd said something wrong. Either that, or maybe he noticed that all the color drained from my face, and my eyes were filling with tears, as I stammered a Fully Freaked Out, "Yes." Because, suddenly, very quickly he began to explain:

"oh no, don't worry, everything is fine, my kid goes to school there too, I saw you this morning, and just thought it was a funny coincidence."


Is this guy for real?!
I thought I was going to pass out.

vomit. punch him in the face. then pass out.

I have never before in my life wanted to punch a cop. But, he totally would have deserved it.

Because, obviously my first thought was:

"OMFG what happened at my kid's school that a Berkeley cop tracked me down?!"

My next thought was:

"Cop or not, who is this guy who knows me, knows my kid, and knows where he goes to school... a cop as a stalker is probably NOT a good thing."

This is all quite different than trying to explain to security at faire why I don't have my passes with me, and him saying, "don't worry, I know you, go ahead."

Of course, to top it off, I couldn't find the shoes I wanted at that store.

I did however find something that falls into the category of "close enough" at a place in Emeryville. But, I'm thinking it may have been a purchase motivated by emotion. I really want to send a copy of this blog to the Berkeley PD, include a copy of the receipt, and let them know that retail therapy is a form of coping with mental distress... and they now owe me fifty bucks.

24 April 2008

House Sitting Part II: Bring on the ShortBus (or: The Truth About Oral Fixation)

Babies are born with certain innate reflexes, and for the most part they go away between two and six months of age. Replaced by actual learned behaviors, once they begin to figure out the world around them, the innate 'reflex' behaviors disappear.

The Sucking reflex is one of those.

When the ShortBus was born, he had a couple of issues, and spent his first three days of life in the nursery under observation instead of with me in my room. I asked the nurses (multiple times even) to NOT give him a pacifier. I told them to call me if he was crying, any time day or night, if he was crying I would go and soothe him. That first night, I slept, and when I woke in the morning, I was shocked that no one had come to get me. So, I make my gimpy way to the nursery (pulled groin muscles are NOT fun), and walk in to see my precious little bundle of joy sucking away on a hunk of plastic.

Long story a little less long, I explained that my kid was not to have a pacifier, they tried to talk me into it, I stood my ground, and every time I left the room, they shoved one into his mouth. *grumble grumble kaiser grumble grumble* So yes, my son came home from the hospital with an oral fixation.

Around two years old, the "binky" became an "only while you are sleeping" thing. And, honestly, that transition went really smoothly - though, heaven help you if you didn't have it at bedtime.

The other night while house sitting for my parents, we lost it. When I say "we" I actually mean "he." When I say "lost," I actually mean "lost." Just like magic, one second he had it, the next it was gone, and though we both looked all over the house, it had apparently vanished into thin air.

The poor kid was heartbroken, but he managed to fall asleep without it. And, since he has only asked about it a couple of times a day (usually, first thing in the morning, and last thing at night). Over all, it has gone much more easily than I expected.

For Him.

Me? I've been dreaming about the stupid thing.

Two nights in a row now.

And, maybe that symbolism is a loss of childhood innocence. A bit of the old "my baby is growing up, and becoming more independent" syndrome. A little tugging at the heartstrings.

Or, maybe its because I haven't gone through his room yet to be absolutely sure they are all gone. To have gone through the sadness and heartbreak of this little 3 1/2 year old... only to have him find a binky and have to start all over again.


Sometimes, a pacifier is just a pacifier.

22 April 2008

House Sitting

Mom and dad are out of town.

I'm sitting here trying to remember the last time I spent the night here by myself. Maybe 12 years ago? 13?

I don't know if it's reality, or television, or a combination of the two, but I seem to remember, in those days, them saying something along the lines of, "don't have any friends over." I don't remember them saying anything about drinking... but, I'm sure there was a lecture of some sort.

Funny that mom called earlier and said, "there's red wine in the cupboard, and... OH! I should have left you a bottle of champagne!" Interesting how things change, and yes, she SHOULD have left me a bottle of champagne.

There is a little part of me that wants to sneak out a window tonight, and go down to Lyon's and drink coffee till three in the morning. And really, it's not the part of me that finds water beds creepy... that part is destined to sleep on the couch tonight.

I'm just finding, that being alone, in a big house, with four cats... well, I'm closer to being the "crazy" cat lady than I thought. Interesting that after just a few hours alone, I end up sitting here talking to the cats. I'm wondering if the champagne would have had me talking to them more or less.

15 April 2008

Finding Nero

This morning I noticed that the sunflower I put in The ShortBus's room was wilted and dead, so I explained to him that it was time to throw it away, and get a new one. The poor kid was heartbroken, very sad that his flower had to go into the garbage can. He felt a little better when I replaced it with one of my silk flowers, but you could tell it just wasn't the same.

So, this afternoon when I picked him up from school, I decided we'd hit Home Depot on the way home, and I'd let him pick out a new plant for his room. After he came to terms with the fact that we weren't going to Target for a new toy, he got pretty excited about the idea.

We walked up and down the rows of flowers for a while, discussing the different colors and naming the different varieties, but he was having a difficult time choosing. And really, trying to explain to a 3 1/2 year old that he can't grow an orange tree in his room, even if it "really is" just his size, is difficult. Especially after already telling him he could pick out whatever he wanted.

Then he saw them. The tomato plants. The large pictures of shiny red tomatoes, at exactly his height, rows upon rows of them.

I've never attempted to grow tomatoes in the house before, but I figure it's worth a shot. His room is really sunny... and what's the worst thing that can happen? I have to go buy a container of cherry tomatoes and strategically place them around the pot? I can totally do that.

So, we look carefully, and choose the perfect little plant. The ShortBus picks it up, looks lovingly at it, and says, "I'm going to name him Nero."

"um... Nemo? Like the fish?"
"No. Nero."
"Like the Roman emperor Nero?"
"Yeah. Nero."
"okie dokie then. Are you sure you're three?"
"No, silly. I'm three and a HALF."
"oooohhhkie dokie then. Let's go pay for Nero."

Now, I don't know if I should maybe be a little worried. Nero wasn't exactly what you'd call a "nice" guy... it has been said that he actually executed his own mother. Where did my 3 1/2 year old kid hear about him? And, why would he name a tomato plant after him?

There are some questions that one should never ask. Mostly because if you ask them of a pre-schooler, you aren't going to get a logical answer. For now, Nero he is, and he's happily sitting on a shelf in the sun in The ShortBus's bedroom.

I'll let you all know how this works out.
Unless Nero lives up to his name, and kills me in my sleep.

09 April 2008

The Story of Wednesday

At about 8:30 this morning, I'm settling into my first cup of coffee, and a slow morning in front of the computer, when I glance at my calendar and realize that I have a doctor's appointment in Vacaville at 10:15. *sigh* Great.

I slurp down my coffee, look longingly at the empty cup (wishing I had time for a leisurely refill), and head toward the shower.

By 9:43 I'm out the door, but forgot to put my produce bins on the porch. By 9:45, I'm merging onto highway 12, check my blind spot just a little too late, and as I'm drifting slightly to my left, notice that there is a car there. No big deal. Except it's a cop, and he decides I was trying to make an "unsafe turn." The dude lights me up instantly.

As I'm sitting on the side of the road, fully annoyed that this guy appears to be writing a citation (and at that point I honestly couldn't figure out WHAT he was writing it for), my phone starts to ring. Of course, I'm not going to answer it at that moment, my luck the guy would cite me for talking on the phone in a vehicle or some such craziness.

I get my citation, even more annoyed with Officer Monosyllabic Grunt (yes, as personable as a rubber biscuit), and get back on the road. I make it to my appointment in time, and, as always, I'm totally thrilled with the staff. Who knew Kaiser could actually hire a decent group of people? I love the Vacaville Kaiser Dermatology department. Just sayin'.

Twenty minutes later, I run out of Kaiser hoping to make it home in time to beat my produce delivery so I don't end up with three empty bins on my side yard. On the way home I send a text to CSB whining about my ticket (I mean really, if I'm going to get a ticket for something, maybe it should be texting and driving. jeez). He calls back, I rant, he offers solutions,and brings The Funny©, I feel better.

Make it home in time to get the empty grocery bins to the front porch, and run back out to fax some paperwork to the County (to go with a job application I filled out last week). While I'm out, realize that I never did listen to the message from this morning... once again, on a cell phone, in the car, no headset... again, I'm thinking there are much better reasons to pull me over.

The message is a job offer. Mostly a good thing, but I think I'm going to be turning it down. I've pretty much decided on becoming a teacher, once I get home from Southern California next week, I'm going to send out applications to all the local districts, and apply to a credential program. Until then, I'll be substitute teaching (and, because of some very wise, and most appreciated, advice I received last night, I will be applying to teach summer school too).

The rest of the day went pretty smoothly. I returned the books I borrowed from the County Office of Education, and the lady said, "oh! did you pass the CSET?" Which, could have been REALLY uncomfortable if I hadn't. But, it was awesome to be able to say, "yes I did... ALL THREE EXAMS in one shot." (howdya like me now bitches?!) Also nice that she asked my name, and when I told her she said, "Wait... I just got an email about you today." We had a really nice conversation, and it looks like Solano County is going to be really helpful in this whole credentialing/working process.

Because of CamiKaos's brilliance, The ShortBus and I are having Pizza and Beer Wednesday (though, maybe I'll give him apple juice). Oh, and by the way, if you haven't gone over to Twitter, do it... I post there off and on all day.. just because I can.

I can't wait to hit Southern Faire this weekend... I've already started to hear rumors about people anticipating the Glen & Giddy Show (starring Giddy). Let me just give you a hint: the more I drink, the more entertaining the Glen & Giddy show becomes (to me). So, if you provide the champagne, I will provide the entertainment (at least to myself).

07 April 2008

Monday, Monday

alarm. 5:30 am - he gets up, turns it off... curls back in.

alarm. a few times after that...three? maybe four? - he is up, turns it off... curls back in.

alarm. 6:30 am - girl does math... morning math... pre-coffee math... with time. Girl falls back to sleep while doing math-time-sleepy-sex logic. d'oh. Barely hears boy get up to go shower.

quiet. 6:56 am - girl hears bedroom door. senses slowly coming to life, smells boy. smells coffee. smiles.

7:04 am - he says, "I'm sorry about my alarm this morning." girl thinks about how happy she is that the alarm went off early, and that she got to be a little more aware of the last hour of cuddling. says, "eh... its ok." smiles.

01 April 2008

Road Trip!

Well, I've purchased my plane tickets...
There is no turning back now...

I will be down in SoCal for faire April 11-14! I'm looking forward to seeing everyone, and REALLY looking forward to you all showing me what Southern Faire is all about. Yes, this will be my first visit to Southern... and I'm excited to see what I've been missing!

For one weekend only, The Glen and Giddy Show will be live (ok.. 'till we're live again at Northern)! I'm thinking a beer drinking contest with the Boggards... *snicker*

...I know, I know... but it'll be fun to try...