Monday, February 18, 2002

Most. Disjointed. Post. Ever.

I think my son just ate a loaf of cinnamon raisin bread (the peppridge farm version). My coffee table, which is his eating table, (it's beat to crap and looks horrid so we let him just eat there) is covered in about a thousand pieces of bread crusts and he's hiding in his room.

That's cool.

Why's it cool? Because we're home here, and he'd never be able to even remotely TAKE a piece of bread from his grandmother's cabinet, not to mention EAT in the livingroom, not to mention make a mess. So I'm cool with it.

One of my long time friends is thinking of starting up a journal and I wish to hell he would. He does this email distribution thing where he summarizes the lives of famous individuals recently relieved of his or her mortal coil. S's summaries are comprised a synopsis of the individual's career, their impact on culture and society as a whole, and personal recollections of that person's impact on his life. He has a rating system from 1 to 10, Mother Theresa being like a 1... me being like an 8.5 should I pass tomorrow (obviously, I'm not famous yet, but plan to be so I can soar up the obit ratings scale)... Aside from this hysterically funny and often touching review system he does, he's a very excellent writer.

I'm gleefully putting pressure on him here... I would so love to open my web stalker on a daily basis for my dose of S's humor and intellect... and I think the world as a whole would love it too. He's a fabulous sketch artist too... so scanning some of his work would make for excellent adornment to his journal. He has long kept a paper journal, I always remember him having some gorgeous cloth bound line-free book by his side at the coffeehouse as he waited on the guests at the door. He would write in a lovely calligraphic style with beautiful thick inked pens that never seemed to bleed through to the other side of the page. I watched him writing along the edge of a woman's torso that he'd sketched, the words softly skirting her breast and hip as he went down the page as adroitly as an artist paints a masterpiece and was jealous of his skill and moved by his love for the words and paper.

I am hoping to coax him into the modern age, to post the thoughts in his head and try and take that same sort of love and adoration to the web... with works that he considers public. I know for a fact that he'd keep a lot to himself, and retain that private realm, but the public consumption materials would be great as a journal. Keep your fingers crossed, dear reader. Hopefully this year there will be a smashing new life for you to savor.

I stayed up until almost 2am. Yesterday I'd mentioned that I was planning on partaking in some adult beverages. I should know better by now. Rum and coke has an interesting impact on me. The rum part mellows me out and makes me all happy, but the coke factor is chock full of caffeine and puts me in a solidly awake state for way too long. Caffeine after 2pm is a no-no for yours truly. Shoulda made something with orange juice instead.

At about 1am, I was watching "Kids in the Hall" on Comedy Central (I love Kids in the Hall, by the way. Greatest Canadian Sketch Comedy shown on American TV ever... simply because we don't get any other Canadian Sketch Comedy. There might be better, but... you know) and I started to get the early warning signs of a migraine. (By the by, if you go to that website I link to, they have a MIDI file of the KITH themesong. It makes me laugh. So damn funny).

I haven't had one in months, and I wasn't even entirely sure I had any medicine, so I ran to the bathroom to make sure I did. Not that I could have done anything if I didn't, but... I took one quickly and avoided a full blown killer migraine. which would have incapacitated me for hours.

The early warning signs for me are visual. I get a frosted edge to my periphery, like looking thorough a car window that hasn't been fully scraped after freezing rain. The center of the window has been scraped, but the edges are caked and shimmering with ice. The frost in my vision kind of shimmers and flashes, like there is sunlight shining through. It's kind of cool, but eventually pulls toward the center of my vision, and then the pain starts.

So when I see the flashing lights, the shimmering, I know to take some medicine and go straight to bed. With my eyes closed I can still see the flashing, but eventually it stops, or I fall asleep, and wake up feeling alright. I'm lucky in that respect.

Geoff was up at 6:30, perhaps earlier. And so I got out of bed to be with him and let Doug sleep in.

Jessica was invited to a friend's house to sleep over last night. This girl is in her class, and over the past several weeks they've become "best friends" and are clingy and silly. Jessica has only had two or three friends in her life, so this is new... to have someone totally different to be friends with.

I miss her when she isn't here. She always keeps me laughing... sometimes I have to tell her to stop, because it gets annoying when she says the same jokes over and over to the same commercials (she likes to rag on TV) and I tell her that a good comedienne keeps her material fresh.

Recently she was invited to a birthday party. I'd met the mom and dad a few times and didn't know that Jessica was particularly close with this little girl. There were ten girls there, and two boy cousins (who don't count) and her little brother, and Jessica was thrilled to be invited. When I picked her up, the mom said Jessica made everyone laugh hysterically, had a running commentary on all the gifts that kept everyone in stitches, and was a big hit with the family. I am amazed sometimes that she doesn't have more friends, or a few closer ones. She seems to be such a well liked kid, so it kind of comes as a surprise to me.

She's also a big spaz. She can't have a phone conversation without it deteriorating to noises and nonsense. I tell her that when she's talking to someone she needs to speak English and not Stupidfartish (she makes farty noises on the phone and I can only imagine that the little girl on the other end is aghast, or farting right along with her. Can't be sure).

So she's over there until at least after lunch. The mom has a doctor's appointment at 11, and the daughter wanted Jessica to come with so they can play together in the waiting room.

We're trying to decide what to do with the vacation time we have. Looks like we may go to Maine. I'm going to call Catering Man because he'd mentioned he needed help with his computer, it is acting up, and he wanted me to take a look at it. So I'll try and schedule that and know what day to go on up there to A&M's House o'Hospitality in the Great Northern Wilderness.

I did want to mention why I haven't mentioned the Olympics here in this journal. You've noticed, haven't you? Well. There is a dearth of Olympics coverage from me because I greatly dislike the way the Olympics are covered by NBC. The fact that they tape everything, water it down, show it after 8pm when the stuff happened hours before, pollute it with "human interest angle" stories about how this particular athlete overcame an addiction to NECCO wafers and marshmallow fluff to become the worlds fastest skeleton racer... the music, the interviews, Katie Couric, Bob Stupid Costas... I can't stand any of it.

When I was a kid, they broadcasted stuff live. I remember my mom had to drag my ass out of bed to watch the Hockey Team play Finland in the MORNING to clinch the gold in 1980.

I remember watching stuff as it happened, live. The girlie-angle tear-jerking stories were few instead of many, the commentators knew sports. I thought that it was exciting and interesting. Now, it is just as interesting as watching Oprah, or the View.

The family got together to mock the opening ceremonies this year. Doug, Jessie and I watched and ragged away. Parts of the presentation were the hoakiest crap I've ever seen (the whole Mormon pioneers thing made me pee my pants laughing, with the Dixie Chicks no less. How are they related. And the way too drawn out Native American thing with stupid Robbie Robertson and his unintelligible native-inspired song. What crap). The "fire within" kids and the whole skating routine... having Katie Couric EXPLAIN every aspect of this performance (which in itself was kind of laughable) made me sick. Shut up for a friggin minute and maybe people will FIGURE OUT what the kid's lantern symbolizes. God. Shut UP!

The puppets and some of the costuming were intense and beautiful... the bison with the inside lighting and the little bison shadows inside was my favorite. The skaters with their eagles heads, and some of the other suits were fabulous. That was the second best part.

The best part though, by far, was the lighting of the torch. Everyone else had gone to bed, the mocking had worn them out, but I was dying to see who would light the flame, sure that my mocking would crescendo in a fevered pitch.

And to my amazement, there they were -- the entire 1980 USA hockey team.

I cried. I wept like a little girl.

There was Mike Eruzione, and Jim Craig -- standing up there, recreating what for me was the most memorable event of my childhood TV viewing and my personal national patriotism apex... the "ragtag" bunch of boys from colleges all over America who overcame all obstacles and all the naysayers. Sigh. Sniff. Weep. Amazing. I was so proud of them then, and so... old now.

My daughter wasn't at all impressed with the footage of their victory. She couldn't understand why it meant so much to me. I never personally viewed the Soviet Union as my worst enemy but I know our nation did, and the strength of their all-but-fully professional hockey team in the face of our inexperienced little boys made everyone sure they'd lose. But they didn't. They were tenacious. They were determined. They were what America has been through history... an in your face, against all odds entity that no one likes deep down and wants to fail. So I loved them.

Since then, most of our national subconscious has been pretty much that of invincibility. We as a nation feel we've earned our top dog status by proving everyone wrong over the last 220 or so years. September 11th brought a lot of that crashing down for us as a nation, and our cockiness in the world arena has been high sticked, but the ref didn't call a penalty.

Will we resume being that cocky entity or will we as a nation wear some humility on our cloaks? Who knows. For me though it was nice to see that bunch of boys, now all grown up, some fat and grey, most still looking pretty young and healthy, reenacting the rushing to the podium that their captain called for. They all earned it together and were reunited there together, hands raised chanting USA! USA!

And it was the best part of the Olympics, thus far.

I haven't watched hardly any of it, but I did catch one medal ceremony. Three USA snowboarders all standing on the gold, silver and bronze platforms, being awarded their prizes, with golden roses in a small nosegay. They were all that kind of cocky 21st century American young male type... one kid had hair like Keanu Reeves in "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure." And when he lifted his roses and his hat into the air, he gave his head the same "dude!" kind of shake that Ted became famous (or infamous) for. To see the three of them there, lined up, hats over heart, with the flags artificially held out straight because there was no wind, they made me laugh and smile. They weren't like boys their age 20 some odd years ago. But they were there, and proud, and rather entertaining. But glitzier, more polished... but winners nonetheless.

Today is Presidents' Day. Who is your favorite president? Will you run out and buy a CAR!!!! That's the thing to do today! Isn't it?

I don't really have a favorite or most admired president. FoxNews this morning was doing a talk back segment where people were calling in and I wanted to call and say TAFT!!!! or in honor of They Might Be Giants, James K Polk!!!

All these trailer park rednecks were calling in about how wonderful GWB and Ronnie Regan were. I think GWB has sure proven himself in this first year as an amazing leader, but THE greatest president??? No. Not yet. Not clear. Ronnie? A lot of people are looking back on the Regan Administration with longing and adoration, but I seem to remember it as not being the sunshiny experience most make it out to be. Even as a Republican/Independent type, I can't revise history for myself and think back with gleeful blindness at the early 80s as if they were the Salad Days of this nation. So ... who is your favorite President? Anyway. We're still trying to figure out what to do with the week. I plan on drinking nightly and staying up watching "Kids In The Hall." Why the hell not, right?

Gah! This is the most disjointed entry ever. I just read back over it. I am aghast at my meanderings.

The final thing I did want to mention is I ended up catching some of that Kid Rock/Hank Williams Jr., "CrossRoads" thing on CMT, which I mocked here previously. It was pretty damn good, y'all, and no football was sung about. Kid Country should be Rob's new name. Hell Yeah! He did a great job, and Hank was TOTALLY into performing with him. They did a song, which I guess is a Hank Williams Jr. standard, where he sings if they don't like this or that... they can kiss my ass!!!! And the two of them were yellin' it old school 70s Country. Damn. I enjoyed that. Jessica thought it was funny. Aaah, the classical and cultural Americana education I pass on to my child.

Alright. Time to make the boy lunch (it has taken me the better part of five hours to type this today... having the family here constantly cuts into my 1/2 hour quick slam of the journal entry...) and to talk to Doug about our game plan for the week. Auf Wiedertypen

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