Monday, October 31, 2011

Observations on Halloween

Candy corn is gross. Really.

I was so excited when my youngest girl (11) said she wanted to be a princess bride! Then entirely deflated when she said 'a dead one'.

Did not make it to pumpkin selection in a timely fashion due to extensive automotive trauma. If you were me you'd understand that. In any case, I had to purchase less-than-exactly-orb-shaped-pie pumpkins from hapless outdoor cart at Home Depot. Kids' enthusiasm level re: decorating these with paint and markers not exactly breaking records.

Am wearing my orange sweater today in honor of the holiday and am sadly much more rotund and pumpkin-like than our pumpkins. Note to self: stop eating or watermelon season is going to be ugly.

Purchased three huge bags of Halloween candy because it was on sale and the sign urging me to buy it was so damn compelling. Realized later I won't be home so the candy will just be sitting in a bowl on my counter for the rest of the year.

Make that month.

Let's be honest, maybe it'll make a week. See pumpkin/watermelon reference above.

Still do not understand the concept of spending an evening wandering around in the dark trying to get scared or scare others as a form of entertainment when the rest of the time we are constantly faced with gruesome truths like poverty, hunger, starvation, a dying planet, deception, war and crime. Maybe y'all should just pay attention the remainder of the year. It's scary enough.

Explained the above to my children last night and got two blinks and a, "Yeah, but you get candy." Insert 'duh' eye-roll.

Well, they are my children. I better hide that candy bowl.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Ain't No Time Like The Present

Some days I wish I was in that other part of my life. That part where I took the train and went to work downtown and stopped for drinks on my way home. Some days I wish I still shopped at Water Tower and wore stupidly expensive undergarments and had sachets in all my drawers. There are days when I wish I still got butterflies in my stomach because practically everything was new to me. I miss my boss and my old friends from work. I wish I still had years and years ahead of me when my body could ping back and forth from just about any test without complaint. I wish I still got haircuts that left me feeling like a pampered princess and left my pillow smelling delicious for two days afterwards. Some days I wish I could look forward to crisp weather so that I could wear thick sweaters and wool skirts with knee-length boots and look like I belonged in the season. I wish I was excited. I wish I was accepting and willing and ambitious beyond measure because - why not - the world is a magical place!

I become giddy with wishing some days.

But the wishing only lasts long enough for me to remember that when I was in that part of my life I always dreamed of this part. The part where I work near the neighborhood and my husband takes me home from work and we make dinner for our family together. The part where the kids drive me bananas with questions and announcements and demands for attention as soon as they walk in the door. There're always so many papers to look at! In earlier days I'd go to a department store and see the mom in the comfy jeans and flats and the worn-out sweater with the flushed face and the scrambling kids and I'd beg God to give me that life. Today, that's me! Before I got here I'd wonder what other expensive thing I could buy to make me feel good, because what I really wanted was to love someone with all my heart and then love my babies and then cook and set tables and read books and stare at my house with nothing but thrill inside at my arrival in a life that's too good to be true.

My hands are wrinkled now. And my jeans certainly don't fit the way they used to. I'm ambitious, but pragmatic. I still believe the world is a magical place. And I'm quite thankful to be where I am, really, truly and completely.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I'm All... Uh... Twitter

So you may have noticed that I don't hang out here much on my blog page anymore. Sadly, you may not have noticed and I've just been fantasizing that you and others like you mull around waiting for some indication that my wit and wisdom has once again been set to page, er blog, so that your existence doesn't seem so mundane and purposeless. In either case, one of us is pathetic. I'll leave it to you to decide.

The sad truth is I haven't been here because I can't write anymore. I know, I know. But it's true. In the mad dash to race myself from 1987 where my hair has remained all these years to 2012 where my wild, unrequited success in business resides I've had to cast off some of my old ways. I’m obsessed with word count. Gone are the long meandering observations on the plight of a, let's say, candidate Perry, for instance, a man who's just about begged for my attention.

In my more prolific blogging days I might have had a word or two on the comical, uh, historic nature of this man's candidacy. Here's a guy who's never lost an election, and he's got the intellect of blank paper. How’s that possible? He's as bright as a bobbing boat oar. Nobody saw it? He's as clever as a box of hair. It's got to be some kind of record, right? (Don't say 'no'. It'll make me cry.)

This guy throws together big ideas like 'Ponzi scheme' and 'Social Security' like a toddler getting dressed in the dark using old Halloween costumes and the contents of a pajama drawer. "It's a Disney-Princess-Cat-Captain! Like it?!" Uh, yeah, but wouldn't elect it to the highest office in the land.

I suppose he's better than his hysterically smiling debate companion, the gal who's married to the gayest straight guy I've ever seen. How many of you have joined the office pool on when he gets outed? I'm in for $20. In the meantime I'm fascinated by the popularity of a candidate - don't be like that - 7% of the population is a good number of people if you're having them over for dinner - who dissects information to relieve it of any facts or sense before she spews it in front of cameras. It's absolutely riveting.

As is the candidate who prefaces his statements with something along the lines of 'I don't have the facts on this….' Maybe he’s worried about word count too. Doesn’t want to muddy the waters with extra info that’ll use up his characters. It's refreshing, I suppose. Kind of like your child's teacher telling you 'I can't prove it but I'm pretty sure your son is a goat with a mild cognitive disorder and a faulty digestive system. You may want to look into trade schools.' I'm supposed to overlook this candidate's blatant disregard for evidence to back up his outlandish statements because (ssshhhh) he's black. Also he knows how to make pizza. I'm not convinced on the former, but I have to say I've thrown a little extra acceptance his way on the pizza thing. I am part Italian, after all.

In place of these boorish rants are trite little mentions of articles, along with a hashtag - which between you and me is a pound sign and some typographically incoherent blather that some techno idiot made up to abbreviate an intelligible (if not intelligent) word or phrase- and a link to someone else's drivel. In my quest for a technologically current identity in business, I've foresaken my own drivel for someone else's. That's progress for you. Or ‘thts prgrss 4u’.

Worse than the choice to spend my time tweeting (why doesn't anyone else find being forced to say that the modern equivalent to shoving one's iphone-addicted self into the ill-fitting clothes of the emperor--the ones woven with the 'invisible' thread? it's ludicrous and hilarious! am i the only one getting that?) is the fact that the tweeting itself is rendering me incapable of stringing together more than 160-characters worth of sensible thought. And yes, you read that right, I said 160. Even in my revised, twitter-speak state I still manage to be verbose and require editing.

The mechanism I previously employed to carry out a thought from inception to print.. uh.. post.. involved long rambling essays, pared over time, carefully crafted to evoke emotion, imagery, finality. Draft upon draft. Rewrite, revision. Coffee. Lots of coffee.

The mechanism I use to tweet involves finding someone else's semi-relevant blurb, acting like I care about it, and then repeating it with my own three words of scintillating commentary. I'm good, but I'll confess, I'm not that good.

I get the general idea of Twitter - to pare down your thoughts to their simplest form - to express a thought quickly, succinctly and still be intelligent and relevant - to connect with others who get you. I get the idea, but I have to be honest, it ain't me. I'm a lingerer, verbally speaking. A languisher. A loller. I love 'L' words, don’t you?. And 'S' words and 'Q' words. I love them all! Isn't squishy a great word? And SCREAM! You can't scream on Twitter. You can't even intone. You can only snark and demur.

I get the whole revolution thing and the global connectivity thing, yada yada yada. Alex Baldwin is entertaining. Steve Martin, oddly, isn’t. The guy impersonating Rahm was vulgar and tedious after a while. He’s famous for being a pottie mouth on Twitter. Is that how we get famous now?

I’ll never make it. I’m doing what I need to do for work and I’m doing what I can to adjust but a part of me wants to shove 70 big fat NOs into the teenie 140-character box and find a fresh blank blog page and just WRITE A MILLION WORDS.

What’s my word count right now?