Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lily Decimation and Karmic Principles

Someone told me recently that in the 'OLDEN' days, people used to have kids in order to boost  their labor force. Free slave labor for the farm. Somehow we've gotten away from that. Perhaps it's due to the fact that we no longer farm. It has shifted so far in the opposite direction, that now we work FOR our kids. We are slaves to their schedules. Like pre-season sports hell, where we spend 4 hours/day in the car driving them to their 2x/day practices. 

Yesterday I decided we were going to have a family bonding event and do lawn work TOGETHER. Responding to moans and groans, I explain how LUCKY they are that they don't have to rise at 4am to milk cows, muck stalls and feed chickens. Instead they get to work in the 500 degree heat pulling weeds. 

My 29 yr.old cousin, who is temporarily living with me, volunteered to help. He promises to show me how to work all of the power tools in the shed. He makes quite a fashion statement--shirtless, with knee-high rubber wader boots and a cowboy hat. I'm really wishing I had a camera. My son, not to be outdone, comes outside in Pirates of the Caribbean pajama pants, a button down dress shirt and cowboy hat to match my cousin. Did I mention the 500 degree weather with a gazillion degrees of humidity? 

I take the weed wacker. I decide it will be a good anti-stress therapy to WACK away those weeds. My cousin is in charge of the hedge clipper--for those weeds that are 6 feet tall and resemble trees. My son is given the task of weeding a small bed near the mailbox. He has done this before, so I don't think he needs much guidance. 

30 minutes later, my arm and hand are numb from weed wacking and I've barely made a dent in the weed forest, which is my yard. My cousin is having difficulty. Apparently it is against his karmic principles to kill ANYTHING. When I question why he isn't hacking off the weeds, I get responses such as--I thought that plant was nice or the coverage gives you more privacy or that one had flowers. 

I check on my son. Instead of weeding the front bed, he has DUG A HOLE. Not a small hole, but a large hole in the MIDDLE OF MY FRONT YARD.  When I inquire oh so patiently about the hole in the front yard, he explains that he WANTED  to dig a hole. Not only is this hole unsightly, but dangerous. Perhaps he has a secret death wish for his sister. The next time she mows the yard, the tractor mower will flip over. I give him directions to fill the hole and continue weeding. I am very specific about what constitutes a weed and what is a REAL LEGIT plant. In my mailbox flower bed, I only have 3 plants--lilys and the rest are weeds. 

I go back to WACKING. A while later, I check on my son again and notice LILY DECIMATION. I'm not overly attached to my plants, but this was one of the only plants that I managed not to kill and it was lying shredded in the driveway. How could you kill my lily???

My son is now demoted to the back yard picking up debris. What's debris, Mom? Just pick up all the wacked plants in the back yard. I check in with my cousin later. How's my son doing? Is he picking up the plants? Sort of. He's been talking about how he is going to be a MALE MODEL, so that he never has to do yard work. 

This is why parents drink. 

Why I'm a Poor Candidate for an I.V. Drug User

1. My fear of needles is only equalled by my fear of spiders and liver. 

Yesterday I went to the dentist's office for a teeny-weeny filling (or so the dentist promised). He brought out the foot long needle of novocaine and promised it would just sting a little. HE LIED. IT HURT. A LOT. 10 minutes later, he checks to see if I'm numb. I try to tell him that I can still feel my lips, so perhaps the novocaine didn't work correctly. He ignores me and drills. IT HURTS. A LOT. After frantically waving my hands in the air, he pauses and looks ANNOYED. Then he gives me another shot. He drills again. IT HURTS. A LOT. He looks MORE ANNOYED as he not so patiently explains that he's BARELY TOUCHING my tooth. Dr. Demon Dentist injects SHOT #3 and resumes drilling. I give up and close my eyes trying to imagine if this is what HELL is like. After the appt. is over, I realize that the entire right side of my face is NUMB. In fact, it is so numb, that I'm drooling like a paralyzed stroke patient. The dentist tells me that it will wear off in 2 hours--"Don't eat or drink, you might chew off your tongue or cheek." Eight hours later, I am still drooling and slurring my words. 

2. Drugs affect me a bit differently than most people.

(see example above)
The most horrid example of this was during labor with my first child. I wasn't going to be a martyr. I yelled for drugs the minute I entered the hospital. I am convinced the anesthesiologists are really sadists in disguise, because they always wait until you are writhing in agony before administering the drugs. Everyone had told me that the epidural was FABULOUS. You could drink tea and converse while having a baby. THEY LIED. I finally get the epidural and it doesn't work. Correction, it only works on one side of the body. So while one side is comfortably numb, the other side feels every single contraction and pain. When the drug bill came, it was $1500 for the shot that didn't work. I tried to dispute the charge. I thought it was only fair to pay for half, since it only worked on half. Unfortunately the hospital billing dept. didn't agree and reported my lack of payment to collections.  

3. Bad trips

The most compelling reason to avoid drugs is the possibility for a bad trip. When I tried a recreational drug (only once kids and it was in college), it was BAD. REALLY BAD. My boyfriend had convinced me of bliss. Instead I saw spiders and snakes crawling over the entire room. Sinister men in black lurked in the shadows ready to kill me. My teeth chattered and I had the shakes for two days. 

Monday, August 17, 2009

Penis Wrappers and other dinnertime conversation

Something about the mountain air must loosen tongues. Or at least my 11 yr-old son's tongue and his desire to share or as I tend to say OVERSHARE. I suppose I should feel happy that he's comfortable in asking his mother questions about 'DOING IT'. 

This conversation was during a dinner of farm fresh veggies--roasted purple potatoes, garlicky green beans, pesto-slathered tomatoes and green salad. Perhaps my son was trying to divert me, so he wouldn't have to eat his veggies. 

The first question had to do with PENIS WRAPPERS. He wanted to know what they looked like and how they worked. Since his school teaches abstinence, he missed the thrilling health class demonstration where you practice putting a condom on a banana. In between bouts of choking, I explain the proper terminology and use without resorting to a hands-on practice session. 

His 16 yr-old sister volunteers the information that condoms come in multiple colors and flavors. My friend who has kids in their 20's & 30's was shocked and perhaps a bit thrilled to learn this fact. My son's response--EEEWWW! I don't want a girl sucking my.... We digressed a a bit into edible underwear and how my daughter procured such information. 

Emboldened by the hysterical laughing, my son's next question had to do with baseball or rather the 'BASES'. He understood that the bases held some meaning outside of baseball, but wasn't sure what they were. He knew that first base was kissing and home was 'SCORING'. (I was momentarily relieved when he thought home base was kissing without clothes)

Again his sister jumped in to clarify his misconceptions, explaining each base and subsequent progression. I then learned such new phrases as 'squeezing the lemon' and 'NAKED LEAPFROG'

He asked me if I had menopause. Perish the thought. I am much too young. He heard the term from THAT 70's SHOW. Good wholesome TV. He thought that menopause was when a woman had breast cancer. When he found out that it meant no more chance of babies, and 'doing' it without birth control, he was grossed out. EEEWWW! Old people 'doing it'. 

By this time, all pretenses of eating were done. We ended the conversation by practicing kissing on our arms. (Which I don't think is particularly helpful, but his sister told him that it was important to practice) I haven't laughed this much in years. Frightening, but funny.

Just in case you think that TV doesn't influence kids--he learned everything from That 70's Show and the Simpsons. 

Pissed On

Rain symbolizes nourishment and renewal. Why is it then that most slang phrases point to the rain as an annoyance? Don't rain on my parade. Save it for a rainy day. I'll take a rain-check. It's raining cats & dogs. This summer has been full of nourishment and renewal, much to all the sunlovers' dismay. 

When I was little, someone (I don't want to blame my mom--it could have been another well-meaning adult or my gloom & doom grandmother) told me that rain was actually the TEARS of God. God was crying, because I was bad. Or the world was bad. Or I made the world bad due to my badness. How's that for a guilt trip? I've also heard that rain is God's PEE. I don't know about you, but I'll take tears any day over Omnipotent GOLDEN SHOWERS. (Did you know that in New Zealand, this offense is punishable by up to 10 years in prison?)

All of this preamble is leading up to a story that involves...RAIN. Just when I was despairing over a lack of suitable blog material, God blesses me with another few incidents to write about. 

I receive a phone call from a friend who is staying in my Maryland lake house, telling me that my dryer belt is broken. I tell her that she has to suffer dryerless for the week. I tell her to use the back line and front porch to hang clothes & towels.  Under normal circumstances, this would not be a problem. But she's there with 12 other people and has to launder 5 bedrooms worth of linens and towels before I arrive. No laundry mat within 30 miles.  I feel bad, but what can I do? 

I arrive and miraculously everything is clean, DRY and folded. I'm thrilled, because a new dryer is arriving momentarily. I get to see it and touch it for about 10 minutes before the driver tells me that it is an ELECTRIC dryer and I have GAS. I knew this. My husband ordered it, so it is all HIS fault. No big deal--I can use the back line. It's very GREEN and eco-friendly. Not much sunshine back there, but perhaps the cool mountain breezes will dry the clothes. 

Now the rain part. Two days in a row, I am trapped in torrential precipitation, attempting to put on the boat cover. After the first day, I have everything ALMOST dry on the line, when downpour #2 occurs. No warning. One minute blue sky, the next minute flash-flooding. Given that I'm such an efficient packer, I realize that I only have 1 pair of shorts and no towels left for the entire week. Everything on the line smells like eau de mildew. 

Teeth chattering, I derive solace from the fact that the rain is freezing cold and pee is typically warm, so at least I'm not the beneficiary of heavenly 'Piss Play' a.k.a water sports. (Not to be confused with the other types of water sports I hope to engage in, as soon as the rain ceases.)