Saturday, November 25, 2006

Baby Fishmouth

Sally: It was "Baby Talk."
Jess: "Baby talk"? That's not a saying.
Harry: Oh, but "baby fish mouth" is sweeping the nation? I hear them talking.
-From When Harry Met Sally

Hope you all had lovely Thanksgivings. The highlight of our day was passing around Aiden (who looks so much like his uncles it's not even funny. He's a portable Pl0tner!), who then passed out on Joel's mom (who later gave me a Polaroid of a bassinet that's been in his family for four generations, five if I forget to put in my NuvaRing. Pressure much?)

You can see the rest of the photos from the day here, and another one below, because I just like it. Feel free to print it out and draw in your own crayon version of Gwen and Jared, whom I missed getting to see by just a few hours. Boo.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Social Blunders

Holy shit, do I ever suck sometimes. I... Sigh. I don't know. I just- arg. Okay, I fancy myself to this open person who's engaged with the world, making connections and *really* seeing people. I think it's partly why doing my job is a pleasure, but I also think that continually doing my job fosters this inclination when I'm off the clock... and it can be a good thing...

But also? I am an assmonkey, sometimes.

Today Joel and I went to a "Celebrating the Season" sale at an art gallery where we have work displayed. (Must. Earn. Money. Gah.) And I started up a conversation with a woman who had some amazing paintings on display. She had her 4-month-old daughter and husband there, and we were talking for, like, 20 minutes. She told me all about being a new mom and making time for her artwork, and we were chatting easily for a while. She's telling me about breast-feeding and "scheduling" artistic inspiration and whether or not she should wean her daughter, which is a very personal, in my opinion, and she brought it up.

Meanwhile, her daughter, who is being held by her husband, has two of my fingers in a tight grip in each of her hands. I'm making the baby laugh and gently squeezing her feet, and we're all laughing easily and engaged in conversation. And then...

Oh God, why did I do this? I said, "I totally don't want to be the creepy stranger or whatever, and you can totally say no, but may I hold her for a minute?" The woman's face FALLS and she's all flusterred, and says, "I'm sorry, but no." And I rushed to say, "Don't apologize, oh my god, I'M sorry, that's why I started out with my disclaimer, etc etc"

And she pointedly holds our her hand to shake mine and tells me her name. In that instant, I realized that her husband had introduced himself and told me the baby's right before this woman walked up, but two of us had skipped that part. I hadn't even told her my name. She continued to apologize profusely and telling me her daughter is having more of her infant vaccinations in a few days and she's feeling over-protective... And I kept saying, "no, no, no! Stop! *I'm* sorry."

I AM AN ASS. I am the kind of ass that MommyBloggers write about!


And.. and... since I'm confessing... I did something similar at Kristen's baby shower. I was chatting with her and her best friend, whom I only knew from hanging out at K's wedding. This friend's toddler was with her at the shower, and frankly, this friend/mom/woman was doing a kickass job with her kid- handing a very PG Kristen presents, writing a thank-you list, simultaneously entertaining her newly mobile daughter, who was very cute. And we were all chatting, and this friend was telling K how challenging and awesome it all is.... blah blah blah... and I said, "So, not to be That Person at the baby shower who says, "Are you gonna have another one?!", but you're so great with A. Do you guys think about having a little brother or sister at all?"

And her face FELL, and she says, "Wow, you ARE that person."

Why? Why, when I hear the little voice in my head, the one that offers the disclaimers, do I not compute? I guess it's good that I have such a big mouth, as I'm am constantly sticking my feet in there. JAY-sus.

You know who's good about teaching me to be better about this stuff? Alissa. (Liss, I miss you, especially when I'm all turned up to 11 on the "Being Me Meter," except that then sometimes I stick my feet in my mouth in front of people you love, so maybe you're better off upstate.)

After the art sale opening, Joel and I drove around to cute little coffee shops and stores that carry individual artist's work and might be good places to sell his prints. We have Big Plans for every weekend between now and New Year's. There won't be another sleep-in, no real plans, don't even take the cell phone, wander around weekend day for quite some time.

We stopped at a gas station, and I really had to go to the bathroom. It wasn't a stall situation, just one door that opens to the universe, a sink and a one-woman throne. I didn't realize the lock was broken when I pushed in the button, and a middle-aged/elderly Orthodox woman walked in JUST as I was wiping. She yelled "OY!" and slammed the door. I swear I wanted to hide in there for an hour or more, until it would be IMPOSSIBLE for her to still be on the other side of the door.

Why am I LIKE this? The Shame, IT BURNS! My God, the shame.


Saturday, November 18, 2006

The Most Amazing Love Letter

I recently started reading a blog called Atomic Tumor. It seems it was created a while back by a couple in Tennessee. It was their joint online journal. They told funny stories about their sons, commented on life in general, and as far as I can tell, the majority of their reader/commenters- as they are here- sound like people they know in real life, have barbecues with, etc.

Around Halloween, the wife became mysteriously ill. Her husband has been writing throughout it all, first as an update for friends and family, then as a vigil, and now, as a tribute and memorial. It is unbelievably touching, and human, and honest. Above all else, it is the most amazing love letter.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Just Keep Swimming

This is for my sister, and Jillian, and Kelly, and maybe Cindy's husband, and anyone else who feels stuck and at the mercy of a Human Resources department.

Just keep swimming! Just keep swimming!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


Fred looks like he could be imagining creative ways to kill us in our sleep and make it look like an accident...

...but that would require moving.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Soccer? Mom (to be)?

Just another day in this idiosyncratic life...

So all last week, I kept thinking there was something significant about November 4th, and then remembering I was going to Andrea's baby shower outside Philly. It's also Kelly and Michael's first wedding anniversary, which... Was that year FAST, or what? I sent a card on time, but totally forgot to call until today.

But anyway... As it turns out, November 4th was also the date that 10 pieces of museum-quality, elegantly-framed, ready-to-hang photographs were due at the Arts Alliance Winter Sale that Joel and I are participating in, (a.k.a trying to hock for cash.) Sleep is overrated!

So I stayed up until 2 a.m. getting our work ready to show, and then got to the gallery space right when it opened. It should have left me just enough time to make it to the shower fashionably late, which started at 1:30 p.m. in another state. I was actually alright time-wise, but I hit every damn red light between the Turnpike exit and Andrea's parents' house... 1:55 p.m....less than fashionable... Lower State Road becomes Limekiln Pike... had to turn around... damn damnedty damn... finally, the right road!

Now, in my defense at this next part... I've only been to Andrea's parents' house twice. Once between her wedding and reception five years ago, and once about two years after that. They live in a lovely development where the houses come in approximately four styles.

I pulled onto their street, like 40 minutes late, and saw cars lined up outside a house with light blue balloons on the mailbox. Score! I got out of my car, swapped my sneakers for high heeled boots, grabbed my camera and the present. Another guest, a man in his thirties, was walking up to the house.

He sorted of smiled at me in that "you look familiar" way, and I smiled back. He had red hair. This was a family party, and anyway, my expectant friend has red hair. I also recalled from her wedding that her husband's best man was his very close friend who has five brothers. They all live nearby, so I thought maybe we'd met at the wedding.

He says, "I bet they're out back" and walks into the backyard. Um, okay... But you know what? If anyone would host a harvest party shower and rent patio warmers, it would be Andrea's mom. Nope, no one out there. "We can probably just walk right in," Familiar-Looking Man says.

"Okay, I guess," I said, smiling and following him into the garage. We walk into the kitchen and Vivaldi's Spring movement is playing. That's totally baby shower music. "They're probably in the basement," Familiar-Looking Man said. Whoa. What? "It's a soccer party," he said, puzzling at my expression.

Me: "Baby shower?"
FLM: "Soccer party?"

It was like that moment in "The Sixth Sense" where Bruce Willis realizes he's been dead since the opening scene, and he's all "My stomach is bleeding! There's a table in front of the door with the red doorknob that I haven't been able to open! My wife can't see me!" Except for me, it was, "Where is the Irish blessing stenciled over the kitchen cabinets? Where is Zoe the golden retriever? Why are there photos of 10-year-olds on the fridge?" I gave Increasingly-Less-Familar-Looking-Man my most winning smile and said, "I'm totally in the wrong house." I turned on my heel and strode confidently out the door.

WHO DOES THIS?!?! Who? Apparently, me.

I got back in the car and drove down the street where another house (also with a three-step stoop in front, a 3-car garage on the side and a gazebo at the top of the driveway) was having a party, already in progress. You see more photos from the party here.

Andrea is the cutest pregnant lady ever. You know, since Kristen. :)