Your Homeland Security Dollars at work

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

For real. This is a memo I got from our Homeland Security Folks.
The terrorists are now in league with the deer. Danger is everywhere!!!

I would like to remind everyone to pay extra atttention while driving. This is the time of year that animals, especially deer are on the move and most active. Just this morning there were at least were two more deer collisions on the interstates (I-93 and I-89).
According to the National Safety Council, there were 530,000 animal-related accidents in 2003 and these collisions resulted in 100 deaths and 10,000 injuries.
The average cost per insurance claim for collision damage is $2,800, with costs varying depending on the type of vehicle and severity of damage. When you factor in autoclaims involving bodily injury, the average rises to $10,000. Defensive driving tips to avoid hitting a deer.
(Of course, it is shit eating rotten for the deer)

~ Be especially attentive from sunset to midnight and during the hours shortly before and after sunrise. These are the highest risk times for deer-vehicle collisions.
(There goes the Driving with my eyes closed tradition between 4 p.m. and 7 a.m.)

~ Drive with caution when moving through deer-crossing zones, in areas known to have a large deer population and in areas where roads divide agricultural fields from forestland. Deer seldom run alone. If you see one deer, others may be nearby.
(Beware the lone running deer, for there are many others behind...grasshopper)

~ When driving at night, use high beam headlights when there is no oncoming traffic. The high beams will better illuminate the eyes of deer on or near the roadway.
( Although, it does blow the element of suprise, I find that wrapping my car in blinking Christmas string lights adds an element of festive epileptic seizure inducing fun to the glow of suprised deer eyes )

~ Slow down and blow your horn with one long blast to frighten the deer away.
(They do not respond to musical horns, or whispered words of love. Loud rap causes the deer to"bust a move" and get all "gangsta" on your ass, throwin' gang signs with their hooves. Don't even get me started on what "Slow Jazz" does to the deer - not for family viewing)

~ Brake firmly when you notice a deer in or near your path, but stay in your lane. Many serious crashes occur when drivers swerve to avoid a deer and hit another vehicle or lose control of their cars.
( Or are having the epileptic seizures induced by my aforementioned blinking car. I would also suggest braking firmly at random times to see if the drivers behind you are in a state of "deer readiness")

~ Always wear your seat belt. Most people injured in car/deer crashes were not wearing their seat belt.
( The others experienced multiple contusions and fractures after having their seatbelt gnawed clean through, then being dragged through their car windows and beaten by pissed off deer who now have a death grudge)

~Do not rely on devices such as deer whistles, deer fences and reflectors to deter deer. These devices have not been proven to reduce deer-vehicle collisions.
(Deer catcalls may work more efficiently to deter the deer such as "Hey, that is quite a rack you got there" or "Hey baby, wanna rut?", or the ever popular "My dad is King of the Forest")

~If your vehicle strikes a deer, do not touch the animal. A frightened and wounded deer can hurt you or further injure itself. The best procedure is to get your car off the road, if possible, and call the police.
(Then the deer can injure the police - OR your child can witness the police gunning down Bambi as he flees for his life. A lifetime of therapy!)

The man can't keep me down

Monday, November 28, 2005

Prior to telling you the parade story, I will treat you to the vision outside my office window. I have a corner cubicle, so although it is a cubicle, it feels as if I have an almost enclosed space. What makes it the BEST, is that I am on the 4th Floor and on an old mental institution campus grounds. Well, maybe that's a little creepy, but The old Elms on the grounds are gorgeous. Today was misty. The snow is melting, and it causes a fog to linger over the ground.

Ok, so we were staying at this studio apartment on E80th, between Park and Madison. Prime Location for museums, the park, et al. Thanksgiving morning arrives and I, sleepless from my night wedged in one small side space between two flailing bodies, moan as my husband gets up and announces that he's going for coffee!! He then further announces that I should get up and get us ready!!! Cause we're going to the Parade!!!!

My husband is totally a city person, He thrives on this energy. I myself feel ambivilent about most cities. I like the culture they offer, and the possibilities of cuisine that I can not get in the woods of New England, but am wary of the smelliness, and having my personal space bubble encroched upon, and waitstaff of whom I an unsure of their personal hygeine habits. That, and my new found fear of bedbugs - which I swear crossed my mind looking at those sketchy sheets even before I read the accursed NYTimes article.

I mumble at him something about "I'd rather live in the fifth circle of purgatory" and roll over to go back to sleep, since without his manly body taking up 2/3rds of the bed, I now have some space and the blood is returning to my legs.

He walks the brisk 3 blocks to one of the 8 billion Starbucks and then, knowing his wife, calls me to remind me to get up out of bed and get ready. Of course, his call comes at the p-re-cise moment I am finally falling to sleep. To add insult to injury, my ring tone is currently 'Ol Dirty Bastards "Baby I got your money", which jolts me to conciousness as if 'Ol Dirty was gyrating next to my ear, his gold grille a-grinnin. "Oh, oh yeah, baby I got your money, do-do-do-do-do, baby I got your money!"

The words that sprang from my lips were nothing close to "Happy Thanksgiving". I believe my daughter was treated to "Jesus Fucking Christ, what the fuck could you want?" - which is the traditional Thanksgiving greeting in my family. A little known fact.

Terrance: "Are you up? Are you getting Em ready? It isn't so cold as last night. I think it will be a great day to get out and see the parade."
Dawn: "I don't want to go. I am exhausted. I was almost back to sleep. Where the hell are you?"
Terrance: "Dawn, get up and get Emily ready, at least."
Dawn: ( showing how low her mothering standards have become) "Do I have to wash her or can I just put clean clothes on her?"
Terrance: "Just get her dressed, I 'll be back in a few minutes"
Dawn: "You better bring me the biggest cup of coffee they have"

So, I rustle my child out of bed and dress her. I wash her face. I am not sure if I made her brush her teeth or not. I don't think I did. I bundle her up and greet Terrance with grunt as I crawl back under the pillows. They leave. I lay in bed. I start to feel guilt. I mean, C'mon. I am in New York on Thanksgiving Day. I am across the park from the start of the parade. I am now watching pre-parade event on NBC. Terrance calls. He rubs it in. I hang up. I sip my coffee, and lie abed. I call him back. I inquire as to where exactly he is. He mocks me further. I hang up and ponder my sorry ass state further.

I watch the beginning of the parade. I call him again. He picks up the phone and laughs at me. He answers: "You can't stand it, can you? It's KILLING YOU, isn't it?"

Yes, it is. It is killing me. I leap up, shower and get dressed. The parade is well underway. This is the view from where Em and Terrance were stationed:
Clearly a fucking awesome spot.

I make it across the park and get to w81st. I call Terrance. "Where are you?", says he.
Me: "I am on the other side of the street....How do I get across? There are barricades every where!"

T: "Just run across the street!"

Me: "I can't there are police everywhere. Hey, there is the little Jai from Queer Eye. Man, he's SMALL! But he has really nice skin."

T: "Just run across, no one will stop you!"

I walk up and down the street nervously. I may be a bad ass in theory, but I am hesitant to jump out at the Macy's parade where there are many, many security people, all looking like Osama may be thinking about attacking Super Grover. I am a white woman - 5 foot four. I feel that I look very non-threatening, but these guys don't look festive or happy or anything.

I decide to make my break for it in front of the Budweiser Horses. I see a couple of police officers watching me, but keep my eyes averted and act as if I am a New Yorker - annoyed at such frivolity. I have to actually move a barrier to get across and begin my brisk walk to the corner of 81st. Woo-hoo. I am almost there.

Apparently not. The 2 cops at the corner point at all of us and say "You have to go around the other side." huh? All the way around the block? They ain't hearing a thing. I watch a few intrepid souls give it a go, trying to explain why they need to get by. No, No, and No.

I give up and turn back to walk around the block. Sigh. I call Terrance and explain that I have to walk around the block to get to him.

T: "Hurry up, you're missing the best stuff!!!"

I get to the corner and make my way to swing around. I large black police officer puts his body in front of me. "Where you headed to, ma'am?"

Me: "Over there, my family is waiting for me right over there. In front of that hotel."
I smile at the nice black man, making good eye contact. This has always worked in New England, and even in Detroit. But then again, I am always accompanied by my husband.

This time, it doesn't work. He is not impressed.

"Do you have ID? Are you a guest of that hotel? Only guests and invited guests can get over there"

Me: "but, but. My family is right there.(pointing) "

"You can't go over there Ma'am. Not unless you show me some ID that says you are a guest of that hotel."

Me: "Yeah, but they aren't guests of that hotel....How did they get there?"

"I don't know ma'am, they must have invitations - you need to move aside there are people waiting to get through."

This was the moment that I ALMOST said, it was at the very tip of my tongue "It's cause I'm white, isn't it?" But I didn't. I did not want to get booked on Thanksgiving. Riker's can't have a very Happy feast.

Instead I called Terrance, who walked over and said "What's the problem here?". At this point, this police officer looked everywhere but at me and my husband. My daughter leaps up on the barricade to hug me and says "Mommy, why won't the police let you in?"

So my husband comes over the barrier, and hugs me in front of the officer. I cut my eyes at him. and say loudly "He didn't believe that my family was over there, he wouldn't let me in"

I make it in, just in time to see the last balloon - Jo-Jo go before Santa makes his way to join the parade.

Home again, Home again, Jiggety Jig

Sunday, November 27, 2005

We are home. THANK GOD! It was fucking cold in New York, and I am not a cold weather pussy. But LORD! It was cold!

We were not struck by the balloon, but We did see it from our vantage point on w81st. Not the striking, just the balloon. If you go to the beginning of the parade, MUCH better. Not so many people touching you.

Here are some quick things I have learned on this trip:

1. My daughter will bitch and moan through any experience. Even the ones she wants to go and do. Take her for a 200 dollar dinner at American Girl? Bitch and Moan. Go to the Macy's day parade and stand in front on the god damn balloons? Bitch and Moan. Walk her through the Guggenheim? Moan and Bitch. Walk her down to Dylan's Candy Bar? More Moaning, More bitching, and the suggestion that her father carry her on his back, cause her feet hurt from walking.

2. Three normal sized people can not fit into a Double Bed. I am the person who will end up in the middle and not sleep at all as I am pummelled from both sides. The other two will awake at 7:00 a.m. and wonder why I am so bitchy. I also have now read a disturbing article about bed bugs in today's New York Times, and how they are infesting hotel rooms and apartments in the city, so now I am concerned that I have been secretly infested with bed bugs. This fear intenstifies as I find an odd bump on my thigh and I have been very itchy.

3. Thanks to Roo's insect post, I worried that there were large evil cockroaches waiting for me to fall asleep. Although, I suppose the concern was moot, as I was trapped in the bed.

4. I have a difficult time relaxing enough to use a foreign bathroom for anything but liquid deposits.

5. I am from New England. My ideas of personal space are different from New Yorkers. Especially in Movie theaters. I am sure you are a charming man, nattily dressed black gay gentleman, however, I do not want to get to know you during Harry Potter. Note the seven year old child with whom I am attending this film. And for god's sake stop the talking!!! Why is this bottle of Poland Springs water 4.50?? Is it consecrated? And is it wrong to suddenly think "Hey that kid who plays Harry Potter is starting to get hot", then get all grossed out and worried since I think that this thought puts me into dangerous territory, until I read that he's 16 and I think "Phew, at least he's legal."

6. I have a hard time with Body odor. But most of all - Sinus breath. Makes me actually gag. Now, imagine me in a cab with 3 other adults and one child with a taxi driver with the worst sinus breath I have ever encountered - stuck in traffic outside of Battery Park, and no one will open down a window cause "it's cold outside". I actually had to put up the neck of my sweater over my nose and breathe through my mouth so I didn't start dry heaving.

Oh yes, there will be more to come. Such as the traditional eating of the Thanksgiving hamburger, and how I was racially profiled by a New York cop.

Fun Family Memories will be Made, Dammit!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

I am packing to go to New York. I am happy, because I will see my inlaws and I do love my Husband's Side of the family. We are all meeting up in New York City. They are coming from Detroit.

I will do my level best to bring home funny stories. If you see a balloon collapsing on someone, I have no doubt that I will be among them - Wounded by Big Bird. We have been invited to an "Inflation party", which I agreed to go to cause Terrance promised there was free good booze. He PROMISED!!!! And who am I to turn down free booze?

New School Puritan, puttin' the smack down on incompetance

Monday, November 21, 2005

I have often feared that it would read on my tombstone:
"She worked REALLY Hard at her job"

I was raised with a work ethic that makes Puritans look like slacker bums. And I love my job. I have been blessed to have chosen a career that I am proud to be a part of, and that makes a difference in the lives of children living in poverty - every day.

Furthermore, I felt called to serve in this profession. Early Childhood Education was too often the bastion of the mediocre, and I felt that it was important to be a really intelligent person who chose to do this work, rather than had to do this work cause it was the only thing I could do. You know the people of whom I speak. Many of you have seen them in the child care centers sprinkled throughout our country.

It has hurt my heart in the past couple of weeks to be training a person who has no passion, no career, no knowledge in my field of expertise. She is , for lack of a better word, a worker drone in the system of state government. She knows the right person, has some connections, and so she has landed on my proverbial doorstep. She won't read my "handbook" on how to do my old job. She doesn't care to learn anything "new" ( she proclaimed this on her first days in our bureau). She seems to spend most of her days trying to convince me she is working at her desk without doing a damn thing.

And her people skills? Holy shit. A talking goat would be more helpful to the public at large than this chick. I actually heard her tell a client that "She didn't know nothing, she was new here, but it all seemed to take a really long time to get anything done". I wanted to stand up and yell - "YES!! CAUSE OF LAZY FATASSES LIKE YOU!!!".

So I spend all day squashing my rage. Willful Incompetance makes me unreasonable, and I see it on parade for 8 hours every day. I watch her dismantle a system that I carefully built for three years. A system that nearly 8000 children a month depend on for child care.

But the most galling thing? She doesn't care. She doesn't care that without the smooth movement of paper in the Machine that is government, Child Care providers don't get paid. Without that payment, parents can't work. Thanksgiving's don't happen. We had our first call today from a provider who won't be having a dinner on Thursday because his $50.00 check isn't coming this week.

For many of these parents and providers, this IS the money that keeps them afloat.

So, for all the government workers you may encounter who act like assholes and don't give a shit, just know that there are the people like me in there too. Those of us who really do care about doing the right thing, and a good job. On behalf of Us, I apologize in advance for the deadwood like her.

Isn't it ironic, dontcha think?

Sunday, November 20, 2005

This morning, I experienced true irony. Not the unfortunate events that Alanis sings about, but true irony.

On my first day birth control free, and my husbands penis still considered by the medical profession to be a lethal weapon, the condom broke.

Laugh on, Fate.

Peas and Franks

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Tonight, I come home from work to this.

Me: "Hmmmm, that smells good. What's cooking?"

Terrance: "Chicken Mirabella, green beans and brown rice."

Me: (Walking over to look over at the stove) "Are those peas mixed in with the rice?"

Terrance: "Yep."

Me: "Are those your ball icing peas?"

Terrance: "They sure are."

Me: " I told you I am not eating your ball icing peas."

Terrance: "Dawn, it isn't as if you've never had anything ball or ball related in your mouth before...why should these peas be off limits?"

Touche', friend, Touche'.

Cutting my teeth

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Tonight, my daughter lost her seventh tooth.

The losing of teeth is a rite of passage in many ways. I recall losing my own teeth and feeling, with certainty, that this was a sign - long before puberty hit me broadside - that I was growing up. Getting the dimes, and occasional quarter from the tooth fairy was a bonus, for sure. But long after the money had been spent, the big new teeth remained, my face changing from a child to a young woman.

Before my own daughter, I had not given alot of thought to the losing of teeth and the dilemnia that it presents for parents. Since I naturally assumed that the tooth fairy whisked my sacred teeth to her tooth kingdom, it never occurred to me that my mother was the culprit in the covert tooth removal operation.

It wasn't until my child lost her first tooth that I was presented with the age old question - What the hell do you do with the teeth? I mean, Santa? Easter Bunny? No problem. I had these mystical characters down pat. I KNEW how to make convincing easter bunny nibbles in carrots, I made it seem as if reindeers had nibbled at the sugar and crumbs were left to prove Santa had indeed partaken of the snack we left - including the empty glass of wine we leave for Santa. (Santa enjoys a little change of pace from the whole milk thing. It makes him more generous with the gifts.)

But a flying fairy? Involving discarded body parts?

And let's just say that this isn't in most parenting magazines yet. ""What to do with your child's old teeth: Five jewelery tips!" or "Parents who callously throw their child's baby teeth away raise a higher percentage of high school dropouts!", "Today on Oprah, Strippers who can trace their downfall to waking up and finding out that their mother was the Tooth Fairy."

It seems somehow wrong to throw away a piece of my child. I mean, I saved the little stump of her umbilical cord too. Ok, stop wrinkling your noses. It doesn't smell or anything. It's a visceral reminder of her time in my body. As she grows older and more independant, I treasure those small reminders of her babyhood. When my breasts were Nirvana for her and when I remained the funniest,wisest, most comforting human on the earth.

Now, with the loss of her seventh tooth, she is becoming a young woman. Her face is changing shape. She is sassy and funny and confident. She tries to lie to me, and I can still catch her at it. There will come a time in the future when I will not be able to tell, but I don't want her to know that. I still remain all-comforting, all-knowing, able to fix everything. I know that this stage is coming to an end too.

So, I save the teeth. I keep them tucked away in the bottom of my cedar chest. As each tooth joins it's fellows, she steps closer to becoming the young woman who will roll her eyes at me, talk about what an embarrassment my clothes are, or makes disgusted noises when her father and I kiss each other.

And these teeth, the teeth that nipped my breasts while nursing, that kept us all awake through terrible nights of teething, the teeth that cannabalized a class of other one year olds; they remind me of the baby that the midwife handed to me.The baby that only lives at the bottom of my cedar chest and in my memories.

Too much of a good thing

Monday, November 14, 2005

We have now accomplished four times of our prescribed “20”.

I wish that I could tell you all that each encounter has been a loving and glorious experience, but after 15 years…..Not so much.

There was a time, long ago, when we would have sex a lot. I mean a lot. Like three times a day on the weekends. But, you know how it is. Kid, laundry, ballet, good television… you just want to LAY DOWN and not have any expectations proverbially thrust upon you.

On Saturday night I yelled: “I Can’t do this tonight! I think I’m starting to Chafe!”

Who says the romance is dead?

Tonight on "Behind the Blogger"

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Here are some little known facts about me:

I was in "All State" and "All New England" chorus in high school. Seriously. I was an alto and I loved that shizzit. Give me a madrigal and a smile. Hey Nonny, Nonny.

I have no tatoos, but I often wish I had one. Then I chicken out.

I do not exercise. No thank ee'. If you see me running, I suggest that you haul ass, as I am being chased by something that plans on either eating me or killing me. Or both. Or, I am chasing the ice cream man after drinking alot of sangria.

I made my now husband buy me several drinks before I agreed to dance with him. I was, it should be known, out "Trolling" for drinks on that particular evening. It was a game my girlfriends and I played. I was quite successful.

In 8th grade, I cut and dyed my hair ala Cyndi Lauper.

I smoked clove cigarettes for about 2 years in college. I loved them. They were long and black and I called them the "sticks of death".

I tell people exactly what I am thinking. It is an often unfortuate way to live. Believe me. I get in more trouble than I can to describe. Some people down right Hate me. Some love me. But I won't die from holding shit in.

I started Therapy when I was 19. The reason was I fell off a ladder from a second story dorm window. I was on that ladder, which was perched on a milk crate, cause the guy I was sleeping with had just locked me out of his room and I was trying to get in to strangle him. I wedged his window open, and got my fingers in, but couldn't pull myself fully in. At that point, the ladder fell off the milk crate and left me hanging on the ledge from the second story dorm window. I was on the FRONT of the building. People walking up to the dorm could see me. The fucker left the room when he saw me out there on the ledge. I suppose he might say that he was "fleeing the psycho chick he was sleeping with". Semantics. I fell off the ledge and really fucked up my ankle. As I lay in the dirt, it occurred to me that I wasn't acting completely rational. Maybe I needed to talk to someone about this.

I love Comedy Central. I am Comedy Central's bitch.

Dante's Inferno....and hair salon

I am scattered today. We decided to take Em and her neighbor friend to see "Zathura". But first, I had to get my hair cut. I really, really needed to get my hair cut. Cause while I am not exactly a "fashion plate", I do try to gussy it all up when I head my ass out for the day. And it was harder with my hair looking like it has been. Even the products with the names of "Concrete" and "Willpower" have not been doing the trick.

I thought my appointment was at noon. Cause that is when I have made the appointment for the last year - at noon, on Sunday. So, we all get out of bed, and we get two seven year old girls out the door by 11:30 to get to the salon by noon.

Our plan is simple. Me: Have a haircut. Them, wait for me to finish and then we got to lunch first at Dante's, then across the street to the theater.

Now, the salon of which I am a patron is attached to an Italian restaurant. No kidding, I know - If I didn't go there, I would totally make fun of the idea. The husband runs the restaurant, the wife runs the salon/spa.

My appointment wasn't until 12:45. Grrrrrr. But the restaurants open! So, I do what any self respecting mother does, I go in and order lunch for mi familia. And vino for me! Whoo hooo. It's noon. I am having a glass of wine. A glass of good white Italian wine. Yummmmm.

Then at 12:45, I get up and walk over to the salon, and the owner says - "Let me get you another glass of wine before you go have your hair done!"

OK! Who am I to disagree with you, owner of the restaurant? Keep my husband occupied with guy talk, my wine glass filled and these two little girls eating pasta, then ice cream!

At 12:45, I am having my aromatherapy scalp massage, with the second glass of wine firmly in hand and thinking "FUCK YEAH! I ROCK!!"

I have a lovely buzz as we head off for the movie. I think briefly that the neighbor's child may have not seen her mother buzzy from drinking wine by 1:30 on a Saturday afternoon. Then I think, "I am the coolest Mom ev-eh!"

About an hour into the exceptionally Loud movie, I begin to regret the two glasses of wine. By the end of exceptionally loud movie, I have a thumper of a headache. Between two girls bickering about if they each got the exact same amount of popcorn and M&M's, my cool mommy vibe is blown. Must ......find.......ibuprofen.........

Deja Crazy D

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Today I gave my daughter a "committment" speech that I later realized could have been lifted, verbatim, from my mother circa 1981.

Hers was entitled :" Your flute and you, or why you will be playing that fucking instrument until you die since I paid for it"

Mine: "Ballet and you, or why you will go to every class, since I already pre-paid the semester, and stop trying to tell me your back hurts- you're seven for Christ's sake. And don't think it's fun for me to get us both out of the house every Saturday morning- I've made a committment too, dammit."

Warm Memories.

**Crazy D is the name that My brother and I made for our mother a long time ago. We would warn each other about the status of "crazy D" when exiting and entering rooms in the house

Lesson Learned: Never aim for the head

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Hello all. Sorry for my little “hiatus”. Work has been, well, blecky, and I am premenstrual. Never a stellar combo. Add in the perpetual “My Balls hurt” moaning and you can well imagine the joy that has been present in my home. I am surprised they haven’t knocked on my door to do a holiday special.

Some aside notes: Yes, the Doctor has demanded that we have 20 sexual encounters before they can test his sperm sample for being “clear”. Until then, we can consider his penis a potentially lethal weapon.

We tried for the first time last night. I was terrified. I believe that I lay there like a blow up doll. I kept waiting for the whole thing to fall off on me. Talk about pressure.

He relates that he “feels better” today. Yeah right. I can see where this is going.

So today, I offer for your enjoyment, one of My most spectacular failures of mothering I was ever able to muster up. I present “The Day I caused my daughter to have a black eye cause I threw a Bitty Shoe at her in a fit of irritation” or “Why I almost had to call the Child Protective services people (….or me) on Me”

Last winter, Terrance had gone away for a business trip. I generally can keep my shit together for 5 days, then the veneer starts to crack and I look a little wild eyed and crazy.
At this point, I was driving her into school – which was 15 minutes PAST where I work, and then driving back to work, then after work driving to pick her up and then beginning the 45-minute to hour commute home. Since I picked her up at 5:30, I would get home at 6:30 p.m. or so. Not conducive to starting dinner, right? So every night when Daddy was gone, I would pick her up and take her to a different restaurant. It serves an all around need – we eat, I don’t have to cook, everyone is happy!

So, on the Thursday night in question, I decided that I wanted Thai food. I really, really wanted Thai food. Emily doesn’t care for the Thai restaurant cause she doesn’t like statues. We get to the door, she seems the statues and she starts to scream. Loudly. I am smiling at the Thai restaurant people, as my daughter crawls under my coat screaming “No, Mommy, No, I don’t like statues! Please don’t make me go in there!”

I smile at the worried looking hostess and try to say calmly “Can we have a table far, far away from any statues?” My coat is screaming and moving around. I lift the child and my coat and proceed to carry her to the table where I plop her down on the chair and whip off my coat – “See”, I say, “no statues! Calm down!”

We have a fairly pleasant dinner, after I assure her that the Tandori chicken is not the devils food, and that the jasmine rice is quite delicious!

I reward her with a new Bitty baby outfit. It is Blue and Velvety and she is excited. See – Life with Mommy is Fun!

Full and happy, we drive home. It is 7:30 p.m. and so, like Mommy’s all over the world, I am really, really ready for Em to hit the sack. We read, we snuggle and then it’s off to bed for her.

Except this is clearly not part of her plan. Instead, she hits the floor- in a full blown tantrum. She cannot find her new Bitty Shoe. I remain calm.

Me: “Did you check the car, next to your car seat?”
Me: “Emily, there is no reason for you to have this reaction.”
Me: “seriously Emily, you need to calm down – have you looked in the car?”
(There was more screaming at me, that I will leave to your imagination)

Me: (Voice raising) “Emily, I swear to god, that I if I go out to the car and find that damn bitty baby shoe, there is going to be hell to pay. I am throwing every last god damn bit of Bitty Baby shit away!!!!”

I run into the January cold night in my bare feet and pajamas. I whip open the car door and there it is – sitting right there – the blue velvet bitty baby shoe. Right where I said it would be.

I fly into the house and round the corner. I am Steaming mad. Psychotic Mommy Mad.

I throw my child’s bedroom door open and scream


And I throw the shoe in her direction. Now mind you, I wasn’t aiming at her head, really.

But like all moments of clarity, I watch as the shoe flies, in slow motion through the air. It makes a perfect arc and connects with her eye.

GGGGGAAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSPPPPPPPPPPP. Did you hear the sucking intake of my breath?

My daughter grabs her eye and wails. Oh…………………Shit………………………….

I run and grab her hand and wrench it from her eye. I see the black and blue developing.

Em: “You hit me in the Eyyyyyyyyyyyyeeeeeeeeee.”

I burst into tears and run for the telephone to call my husband.

Terrance: “Dawn, calm down. Now what happened? You threw a bitty baby shoe at her? You hit her in the eye? Why did you aim for her head? Never aim for the head, honey.”

So, he calms us both down and I apologize profusely to my daughter. She can tell she’s got me now. The Mommy guilt is wafting off of me like 5 day old fish.

But here’s the thing. I have to take her to school tomorrow. I ain’t got a quiet kid. She is about to relate in gut wrenching detail how Mommy popped her in the eye with a Bitty Baby shoe. Her eye is clearly bruised. I am fucked.

I also, at that time, was managing the registry for all those in the state who had been convicted for child abuse and neglect. If the teacher calls in the bruise, she is calling me into….well, me. Double fucked.

So I must do the Mommy walk of shame into the classroom and explain what happened last night in my house. Yes. I have to hang it all out there, since my kid is definitely talking. I get about halfway through the story and burst back into tears.

Em’s teacher hugs me and tells me that it’s all right- every parent in this room has lost it with their kid and done something that they regretted, including her. A hard spanking, an arm grab, a thrown bitty baby shoe. Nobody talks about it, she says, but we all have our moments.

And so, I share with you all. My Moment. My bad, bad mommy moment. And I can assure you; she milks that baby for all it’s worth. If you ever meet her just say “bitty shoe” and watch the story tumble from her mouth.

Like Mama, Like Daughter

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

I just got a call from Terrance.

Apparently, the neighbor just asked him how he was doing. He said "OK, thanks"

Neighbor: "No need to be coy, we know about the vascetomy....Emily told us you had stitches in your Privates"

That's my girl!

Some "assvice" from me to you

Monday, November 07, 2005

In an effort to make you spouse feel better after his “Procedure”, don’t mention that:

Me:“Hey ,Denise hopes you are feeling better”
Him: “Denise Knows?”
Me: “Yeah, I told her, cause the girls are getting together and I couldn’t go that night”
Him: “Oh my God, I didn’t want Denise to know!”

A Little Later –

Me: “Hey Rick says that next time we all get together, he will buy you a drink, since you were unable to join the parents this weekend!”
Him: “Rick Knows? Does this mean all the parents know too?”
Me: “Well, yeah – they wondered where you were and I told them that you would have preferred to be at the party, instead of recovering!”
Him: “Oh my God , Dawn – ( sarcastic tone) Did you tell all of cyberspace too?”
Me: Long Pause “Welllllllllll yeah.”

The intense stare being beamed at me by my spouse is penetrating my consciousness. He is Not happy. I have done something very, very bad. It knocks spending the 200 dollars at Old Navy this past weekend out of the top position of “bad Dawn Decisions” for him to be royally pissed off at me about.

Him: Did it ever occur to you that this is private? Maybe I don’t want the whole world to know about this?”
Me: “Honestly, no. I mean, you know, it’s no big deal”

Would anyone care to join me in my doghouse? I shall be living there for a couple of days.

Rude Awakening

Saturday, November 05, 2005

My day started earlier than I would have liked.

Sorry, the futility of the first sentance struck me as funny. Since giving birth to my bundle o'fun seven years ago, ALL my days have started earlier than I would have liked.

As you know, Emily sleeps with me. The American Academy of Pediatrics may suggest that I have been trying to bump her off by endangering her with my "Family bed", and I may suggest that they shove it up their collective asses.

She wakes like clockwork at about 6:30 and begins her Bhutan Death march campaign to wake me up. It's a little game we play. She doesn't want anything in particular, just to be assured that I am NOT sleeping. She seems to feel very strongly that if she isn't sleeping, I shouldn't be sleeping.

I usually murmur something loving along the of "Leave me Alone!" or "Stop Touching me!" and try to roll away from her.

When she was small, I assumed that she had not intended to elbow me in the nose, or kick me directly in the crotch, or lean with her elbow on my nipple. Now I comprehend that she was simply perfecting her technique.

For this morning's stunt......

I am laying there, half asleep. Thinking of the day's schedule - ballet, have to go pick up a cake at a very yummy bakery, going to friends tonight, so need to pack an overnight bag .... you know, the stuff that women think of before they get up.

I hear a funny whirring noise. It's kind of far away and only goes on for a second. So I return to my day dreams of cake and bottles of wine with adults tonight and being away from bags of frozen peas....I begin to drift back to sleep.

Suddenly, I am being rushed back to the tunnel of conciousness. Something is very wrong my body is yelling, wake UP!

As my eyes fly open, they look directly into a small ultra violet light, which makes my head snap back as I exclaim "Emily, what the hell is WRONG with you?"

She has taken this small "Finding Nemo"aquarium top off a toy, and has pressed it's ultraviolet light to my eyelids in her latest attempt to awaken me.

Em:"Oh, sorry, Mama"
She says this in a breathless, innocent way. Then hops off the bed to go see her daddy. She wins again, I am awake!

I can actually still see the purple circle when I close my eyes. She may have seered the back of my retina's.

I think my kid is channeling Mengele

Tit for Tat

Friday, November 04, 2005

Good Morrow, gentle friends.

The deed is done.

I had some fun at my now sleeping husbands expense - for instance, I suggested that perhaps he ask for a "ball lift" while he was in there having work done. Mainly to say the words "ball" and "lift" together.

Also, as the Valium took effect and he started to get silly in the car, I said it was nice to have him be so relaxed and he announced "I'm always chill, baby." Which made me hysterical, cause he is the least "chill " man ever. I'm suprised diamonds haven't popped out of his ass.

So we get there and he is a bit loopy from the Valium and he is trying to give me instructions like, "If any of my clients call, tell them I am out of the country"

?????? What?

And "Even though I am dopey, I could still kick anyone's ass if I had too"

Thank God. Roving bands of attack chipmunks will be no match for my about to be neutered spouse.

I also ran out and took this picture while he was in the "procedure room." Was this logo designed by a 9 year old boy or what? Geesh, I wonder what they specialize in here? Does the same designer draw two circles and an arrow pointing at a black triangle for a gynecologist's office?

Then I waited for them to call him in. I threatened to come in and do a photo-documentary. He did not find this funny. At all.

So I sat and waited.

I told you the waiting room was straight outta 1975

And then the doctor came out to get me. I started to smile at him. I couldn't help it.

I go in and there he is - the father o' my child, laying flat on his back with his hands over his face. His crotch is enscounced in gauze and he begins to hold his testicles. He walks out of the building...holding his testicles. We drive home, and he is laying as flat as he can in the. I run into the grocery store to purchase the bags of peas to ice him down.

we begin to drive home. He must be in pain, for he lifts up his sweatpants and places a bag of frozen peas on his testicles. The old man in the truck beside us watches a big black man shove a bag of peas down his pants. He looks a bit distraught - the old man that is. Perhaps the Conservatives are right, for right there, next to his truck is a Black man doing unnatural things to frozen vegetables.

Terrance has no clue anyone is watching him. I giggle.
I hear a new musical coming on:
"ain't nobody having sex with veg-e-tables"

But, poor husband. He does look bad now. I just re-iced his balls with another bag of frozen peas and gave him more ibuprofen. He said "My balls are killing me" before he fell asleep.

And then I remember pushing a baby out of a certain place and think that this seems a fair trade.


Thursday, November 03, 2005

Tick, Tick, Tick.......You know what tomorrow is?


It's our "appointment".

It's no "Tommy"

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

I have been contemplating what my life would like as a Musical Opera, in the style of the great Rock Opera’s of past.

I would like to propose some song titles that would encompass my experiences throughout the day:

Side 1:

In Praise of Prozac, or how I get up in the morning
Where have all the run-free pantyhose gone?
Kidz Bop is the Devil’s music
Seriously Dude, you need to calm down before you have a stroke (A duet with my husband)
Emily, stop dancing around naked and get ready for school.
(This is a three-parter with the above Duet with my husband)

I have reached heaven, and its name is Dunkin Donuts
Guy in the F150 pickup, do not cut me off, for your job can not be all that great that you need to get there this fast, I see that you are in landscaping and like Nascar.

No small talk in the elevator (leave me alone) - a doo-wop number
What fresh hell is this? (the reading of the email)
Which morphs into the plaintive solo:
Are people really this stupid? (The Idiot Song)

Side 2:

Hey, Gas is 2.29! Fill ‘er up!
What do you want for dinner? (The Cell phone song)
Mommy has wine breath, but she still reads to me every night (sung by Emily)
Go to sleep, child, go to SLEEP!
If Mommy and Daddy don’t have sex soon, we will get divorced and it will be all your fault.

Bonus tracks:

I mock you, yes I do. (The Superiority song)
You can never have too many shoes – unless they are from Payless.
F is for Fuck
Suck it, Uber-Mom’s

Feel free to add your own.

The Great Leap Forward

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Today I emailed my application for my PhD program at McGill in Montreal.

To say that I am shitting my pants would be an understatment.

It isn't the work. The work is the easy part. I am MADE for that world. Obscure facts? Fancy Language and vocabulary? Arguing arcane points that no one else living would be concerned about? OH YEAH! WOO HOO! Bring it on!

So after I emailed it, I had a vague dizzy spell and minor panic attack, then went out and had Two drinks after work....then felt fat. Then tried to pick a fight with my husband about whether or not I had gained weight. So I handled it all beautifully. My therapist would be so proud.
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