Monday, October 31, 2005

A Tale Of Two Costumes

In honor of today, I bring you the following:

As a parent, there are many festivities you look forward to sharing with your offspring and several of these events involve costumes, decorations and candy, chief among which in our household are Halloween, Christmas and Easter. Now, when to trot your adorable little bundle of sticky around to see all the neighbors, begging for candy, is a personal decision. Charles and I came up with the age of 3, for Colin, being reasonable. We have nothing against tots of 3 days old procuring 20 lb plastic grinning jack-o-lanterns full of Sweet-Tarts and Hershey bars, but we prefer to cut out the middle man and simply buy the damn 20 lbs of candy ourselves, thereby avoiding getting the "yucky" candy and skipping the tedious going from door-to-door and ringing doorbells. Yes, free is a very good price, but so are deeply discounted giant-economy-sized bags of sucrosy goodness.

So. Three years ago, Colin and I trotted down to the local Shopko to find him the perfect costume. (Yes, yes, I am a complete lame-o at devising costumes with common household items. Long ago, I realized this and committed to buying them ready-made forever and ever, amen.) We saw lions and bats and superheros with capes. We also saw a spider costume. Colin is afraid of spiders. You can guess which costume he chose. I tried, diplomatically, to talk him out of it, but as he was set on his choice, (and the damn thing was rather cool, well made and on sale for $8) well, call me pragmatic. For several days following, he tried it on and loved it. It was black, green and a rather dark shade of purple, and made of felt. The arms were attached with black strings, so that when the top legs were waved via his arms being attached to them, all the legs waved. We talk about trick-or-treating and that either his dad or I would go with him, the other to remain at home to hand out candy to the other kids. He was terribly excited. Until after his nap on Halloween evening.

At that point, he no longer wanted anything to do with costumes, any costume, or trick-or-treating at all, even without that horrid, vile spider costume, even with the promise of candy. He wanted to curl up on the couch and watch It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, over and over. At the end, he helped me hand out candy, admiring the other kids' costumes, but no regrets that he didn't join them.

The next day, he decided that he now wanted to go dress up and trick-or-treat. I explained that it was no longer an option, and he was fine with it.

Fast forward to the following year. He is 4. He is enamored with Scooby-doo. I find a Scooby costume in his size. He decides it is great! He can't wait for Halloween. The whole damn scene is replayed. In its entirety. Except that I save the receipt and do not remove the tags from Scooby-doo.

The following year, last year, he is in kindergarten. Small town kindergarten in the Midwest. We adore Halloween in the Midwest. We do not call it "harvest festival" and we do not hold back on the gory decorations.

Colin is enraptured by all things Lord of the Rings and has chosen to be an elf (specifically, Legolas, or "Wegowas", sans the long blond hair). He is very cute. School has a Halloween parade for all the kids to march in, going around the village, then back to school for the class Halloween (not harvest) party. He has a ball wearing his costume and, for the first time, goes trick-or-treating. Sara, not yet 2, stays home with her grandma. He gets 20 lbs of candy and the giant stadium light goes on in his brain: "So this is what the parents were going on and on about!!!"

That brings us to this year. He has chosen to be the Red Power Ranger (What? I don't think he has ever even seen Power Rangers.) Sara is nearly 3, and so ready to go join the fray. Colin has taken her aside and explained the whole situation to her in depth, so she will not make the same mistake he did.

Good thing she is not scared of spiders.

Happy Halloween!


Friday, October 28, 2005

Checking In

Damn, so here we are at Friday, again. Staring the end of daylight savings and Halloween square in the face, which means over the next 8 weeks, comes the machine gun fire of festivities: Sara's birthday, Thanksgiving, Colin's birthday, Christmas, Charles's birthday, New Year's. With a healthy slathering of holiday cheer-ing over the top. Please don't get me wrong, I absolutely adore the holidays. It's just from this perspective, when I haven't started doing anything for any of them, that it looks a bit dizzying.

I am more "chestnuts by the open fire" than "hustle and bustle".

And what the hell are we going to get Charles's mother this year. (Inside joke, that. Every year, at varying times, Charles and I face each other with panic-eyes and mutter that question.)

Mom and Morris's visit was lovely. Grandchildren were hugged and made much over. Toys were played. Food was eaten. Wine was sipped. Horrible ceiling lights were converted to attractive ceiling lights. Soap dispenser was attached to kitchen sink. Emma was confounded by the classic dilemma of whose feet to plop on and whose hands to seek pats from. Poor pup. A dent was made in the almost 300 bulbs that needed planting. It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown was watched 157 times. Sara now quotes freely from it, resulting in a ban until next year, as she accompanies the performance with Lucy "slugs".

The grass is now frosty for several hours each morning and it is the first week without soccer in over a month. Is it bad of me to rejoice in that fact? Probably.

Work is getting busier in spits and spats. Summer is usually fairly busy with vacationing physicians and out-of-towners. Winter is usually crazy-busy with all the cruds and falls. Spring and fall are usually slower. Feast or famine.

The little black car is finally back from the shop, two weeks and some $2800 smackers later. Thank god we were insured. Can't wait to see what it does to our rates.

I think that's about it. Nothing funny. Just a chat among friends.

Oh, wait! I nearly forgot!

Tuesday, I went in to work, as I only had enough vacation to cover Monday and Wednesday, expecting to get out of there around 5 pm (have I told you lately how I love my job?) when I check my messages and find one with many exclamation points in the title. Exclamation points adorning the words "reminder for the mandatory meeting, tonight".


You see, every so often, and this year it seems they are doing this every month or two, we have these mandatory meetings of us network physicians to help us in our practices and boost, yes, you guessed it....morale! One of them was Tuesday night and I completely missed all messages. Which in and of itself is very odd, as I am not the sort to miss such things. Well, couldn't I have just skived off and said, "Whoops, forgot!" Of course I could. This is America. Sadly, the Powers That Be would respond with, "Hey, no problemo, old bean, and please take note of the lighter paycheck." $250 lighter. Ouch.

So, instead of going home at 5 pm to husband, kids, and parents and eating the lovely African Peanut Chicken soup with homemade bread I had prepared, I got to listen to this bozo discuss how to deal with difficult people and eat cold sandwiches. Normally, I'd have been fine with it, but that night, I was just mad. Mad, mad, mad. Still mad when I got home at 10 pm. The talk was fine, most of what he went over is what I have been doing for years, I just didn't know there was a copywrighted name and series of book-tours possible to go along with it. (I never did think big). And Oprah. Apparently, he is thisclose to Oprah, or at least her show, as he made sure to let us know he was one of the ones who was called upon to give expert advice. I got a couple of tips out of it, not to mention copies of his book, 4 set CD of his 4 +1/2 hour full lecture (we must have gotten the "lecture lite") and handy desk reference, all bought and paid for by my employer, whether I wanted them or not. At the end, he let us know that he was available for questions and (snicker) book signings. I briefly considered going up and asking him to sign my jiggly post-babies-belly, but instead beat cheeks down the hall.

I just don't do smarmy well.

But it is fun to mock.

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Monday, October 24, 2005


Hello, hello, hello!

Yes, I am alive and blogging sporadically. Mum and Morris visiting, remember? Lots of food to make and eat. Lots of children being grandparented. Lots of house to re-trash.

This morning, while waiting for Colin to eat and lose his shoes and get on the bus, I have caught up on all your doings of the past several days and, I must say, Haloscan bites. I can leave no witty comments for love or money to any of you. And let me say, they were some witty comments, I tell you.

But, they are gone, gone with the ether.

Not that I am bitter.

Or paranoid.

I mean, it has only been 5 days, not such a long time. And I was thinking about you all.


I think I need another cookie. And then breakfast.


Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Can't Wait To See What They "Give" For A Christmas Treat

In honor of National Boss's Day, I have been authorized to relate the following from Charles, Principal Extraordinaire. (You know: The boss of the school.)

Driving home in the car last night, he tells me of the treat that awaits him for National Boss's Day from the school board. The treat he just found out about that day.

Not flowers. Not a gift certificate for McD's. Not the afternoon off (sheesh, what the hell were you thinking?) or chocolates. Not a cheesy mug or a figurine of a guy behind the desk with the obligatory "World's Best Boss" blazoned across it.

The board wants all the school administrators to assemble at Wednesday's school board meeting to be "recognized".

Sounds like a lovely thought, yes? I thought so, too, for that fraction of a nanosecond before the next neuron fired.

What that really entails is that he "gets" to stay late another couple of hours (they meet at 7 pm), eat dinner from plastic and stay in his tie, for 5 minutes of "Thank you, oh you district administrators." Only then can he get in his car and drive home.

Instead of eating dinner with his family at 6 pm, putting his feet up or chasing the kids or throwing the ball with the dog, he gets to come home around 8 pm. The kids will be in bed. The dinner, in the fridge. The dog curled by a chair.

Yeah, that's really going to raise morale and boost job satisfaction. He is really going to feel appreciated after that.

And don't even think the question, "So, it's optional, right?"

Now, we both knew that he'd have his share of late nights with this job. Hell, he's been doing this for several years. What puts our skivs in a twist is having a late night for no good reason. This does not help kids. It is not a parents' night or even the dreaded Family Fun Night. It is not even hours to be spent this Saturday canvassing the area to get folks to fill out a survey regarding their perceptions about the district. (Never mind that it is his son's last soccer game of the season or that family will be in town. An entire Saturday morning.) That, at least, has some pretense of use.

Thanks, but no thanks.

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Monday, October 17, 2005

Productive. And You?

How was your weekend, dearest darlings?

Me? I have embarked on my semi-annual scrub as much of the shit out of the house as I can. Forced death march cleaning, if you will.

To whit, I submit the following achieved over the past few days:
  • vacuumed whole damn house, including stairs
  • dusted whole damn house, even under the stereo equipment, as much as humanly possible
  • mopped every square inch of non-carped covered floor space (and a little carpet, too, drat that sloppy mop.)
  • cleaned fridge, removing all comestibles and retiring those who waved back at me. I also snuck 2 of the 8 jars of mustard in the door (yes. 8. Not counting the 2-3 jars of mustard pretzel dip) into the great beyond. Charles has a condiment addiction.
  • moved and cleaned under every bit of kitchen counter, including where the computer and its attendant 47 cords sits, on the bit of desk by the door
  • cleaned the microwave
  • did mounds of laundry, folded, and put away
  • put away all the toys in the playroom properly, not just in the nearest bin or kicked under the couch
  • moved said couch and pulled out hiding toys (human and dog), also found new colony of friendly green mold on the wall behind the couch and another, less friendly but darker and fuzzier colony, on the carpet. I suspect it was once an errant raisin or such, which must have traveled there on its own as it is widely known that we do not let those of small stature eat in the playroom (ahem)
  • destroyed both mold colonies clandestinely, so as not to invite the wrath of the endangered species groups (I have enough to do without filling out their forms in triplicate)
  • planned several lovely meals
  • grocery shopped for said lovely meals
  • drooled over the consuming of the future lovely meals
  • scrubbed the bathrooms, including the showers
  • de-scaled our shower with lemon juice (I curse you, Midwestern hard water)
  • removed the little cover thingies from the faucets and de-grimed them (more life systems lost)
  • filled the hand soap dispensers
  • emptied the trash
  • washed, folded and put away more laundry
  • sorted the pile of papers on the counter into a smaller pile of papers (now on its side!) on the counter
  • cleaned the desk in the study (now! with clean desk top!)
  • watered the plants
  • cleaned the windows, as much as possible, given that 2 of the 8 surfaces are, to my persistent fiddling, still inaccessible to all but grime and small bugs. Now, instead of looking filthy, they just look dirty and streaky, quite an improvement, I assure you.

It is with this last that I nearly met my match. I have now, officially, found a new most hated household chore. It used to be cleaning the shower. All that scrubbing up and down, combined with the lemon juice descaling, well, just hate, hate, hate it.

Hah. No longer.

You remember my deeply ingrained bug phobia? I am sure I have mentioned it a time or two. How much the crawly, segmented, and crunchy skeeve me to the max and leave me jumping 5 feet back and squealing like a girl? Well, at least in my head. I have learned to suppress this reaction much of the time.

Now think of what you find on the window sill, between the window proper and the storm window or screen. Yes. Bugs. Mostly dead bugs. I also answered my question of: "Is it better to have a sill of dead bugs or live ones?"

The answer is: Live ones are better, at least better than dead ones who have been there through at least a few seasons and are no longer easily detachable from the window sill or its attendant parts. Bugs that are removable via vacuum are more desirable than those that must be removed via hand. Hand swathed in a roll of paper towels, none-the-less, but still hand. Specifically my hand. Yet remove them I must. All tolled, many hundreds. No exaggeration. Easily over a hundred alone on the loft window sill. Several very large. But remove them, I did, as much as my swathed hand could reach. Sadly, I did not clean the windows in the mudroom, this odd afterthought of a room attached to the back of the house, sitting in the middle of the deck. It was billed as a "3-seasons-room" as it has a heater and a ceiling fan, although what moron would spend the $800 dollars to heat such a box in a Wisconsin winter, I ask you. So, we use it for muddy boots and some gardening stuff and kid outside toys. The cookbooks also live there, as there is no room for them in the house at present, and the room is accessible through the kitchen. So there are about 10 more windows filled with buggy corpse horrors for me to contemplate. My skin is crawling as I type.

And now, I will answer your burning question: Why the hell did I do all this? Are we moving?

No, sillies! We are NEVER MOVING, AGAIN, remember?

My mom and step-dad are coming for a week!

No! My lovely mum is most certainly NOT one of those who is a clean freak. She successfully plowed a compromise of clean but not pristine through our childhoods, all while working full-time. She would no more say anything should I have a house filled with piles of rotting food and flies than fly to the moon. She would then announce that she was feeling "useless" or some suchness and casually start to clean things up, making it feel like a natural, even fun thing to do. I just feel this compulsion to clean for guests. All guests. Even my mum.

I look at as a good thing. Can you imagine the pile of rotting insect corpses on the window sill were it otherwise? In a few years, they would block out the sun.


Friday, October 14, 2005

Haiku For A Naughty Dog

You know where to poop.
Yet, soon as my back is turned,
There you go again.


Well, That's Just a Bit Too Accurate

chef jpeg
You are the the Swedish Chef.You are a talented individual, nobody understands
you. Perhaps it's because you talk funny.
FAVORITE EXPRESSION:"Brk! Brk! Brk!"HOBBIES:Kokin' der yummee-yummers
FAVORITE MOVIE:"Wild Strawberries...and Creme"
LAST BOOK READ:"Der Swedish Chef Kokin' Bokin'"
QUOTE:"Vergoofin der flicke stoobin mit der brk-brk

What Muppet are you?
brought to you by

They got that right, down to the nobody knowing what the hell I'm talking about much of the time.

Plus, it IS all about the food.

Ya sure. Yoobetcha.


Wednesday, October 12, 2005

My Turn

So far, most of this blog, as is the nature of blogs, has been one way. I blather on about some bit of absurdity or such in my dull little life and if you feel compelled to do so, you comment. Thus is the nature of blogs. Occasionally, we meme, either because we are called upon or because we find one that sounds fun, or, let's be honest, because we have absolutely nothing else to write and it has been a few days since we posted and there are expectations.

Now, I feel I know most of you, probably all of you, as I really can't fathom anyone lurking here for more than a read or two. It really is not that 1) good 2) interesting 3) lofty (Snicker, snort. Not lofty at all.) 4) intimidating. There are plenty of blogs I lurk on but they are the "Big" ones where each post is followed by 50-100 comments, not counting any replies from the blogger. I lurk there for the same reason I do not raise my hand in a large class or call out comments during a performance. Nothing to add. It's all been said. Read for pleasure, alone.

So, my darlings, today, I pose some questions to you. This is not a meme. You can take any of it should you wish, of course. These are just some things I am curious about. The speaker calls on the group. Answer any or all or anything else you want. Sing a song if you desire.

(OK, yes, I've run out of drivel to natter on about and I feel like writing.)

1. How did you all get into blogging? For me, I started reading the preggo diaries on the iparenting site when pregnant with Sara, during slow times at work. I wanted to have some sort of feeling that I was going through this with some other people. A couple of my favorite writers left to create their own blogs and these introduced me to others. After almost 3 years, I decided to see if this was something I'd like and would keep up with. It also started as a way to keep those farthest and dearest more a part of our lives as it was easier to put up a blog entry, for some reason, than send e-mails.

2. What one book have you always wanted to read but have not gotten around to yet? The classic, "To Kill A Mockingbird". I know! Never read it. I think mine was the only English class in history, not to mention our school, not to read it. I finally bought it several weeks ago and will read it soon. Never seen the movie, either.

3. What food have you always wanted to try? Baked Alaska. I imagine it is nasty, but I am strangely intrigued. Ice cream encased in meringue and baked. I want someone to have me over for dinner and serve it for dessert or order it off the menu and let me have a bite. I will never try it otherwise as there is no way I am sacrificing a restaurant dessert choice of chocolate-covered-chocolate for this.

4. If you were shut away for several months with only 3 books that you currently have in your possession, which would you choose? The Collected Works of Shakespeare that my grandmother passed on to me, The Lord of the Rings bound volume Charles gave to me, and Busman's Honeymoon by Dorothy L Sayers, my favorite mystery author, who I re-read for sheer delight, which I gave to me.

5. paper or plastic? Paper. We curbside recycle in all the paper bags. Plus, I can no longer find a place around here to recycle the damn plastic bags.

That's a start. More probably later as I get the urge.


Monday, October 10, 2005

Getting Around To It

A week ago Teri posted this via Dana:

Leave your name and...
1. I'll respond with something random about you.
2. I'll tell you what song/movie reminds me of you.
3. I'll pick a flavor of jello to wrestle with you in.
4. I'll try to say something that only makes sense to you and me.
5. I'll tell you my first/clearest memory of you.
6. I'll tell you what animal you remind me of.
7. I'll ask you something that I've always wondered about you.
8. If I do this for you, you must post this on your blog.

And kindly made one up for me:

1. You have the same name as a Roman Goddess
2. Holy Grail (you know the one). Llamas!
3. Jell-O Brand Chocolate Pudding
4. A desert consisting of spaghetti sauce, green onions, peas, salad dressing and some ginger snap cookies all with chocolate sauce poured liberally over the top.
5. Stumbling onto your blog from God-knows-where and thinking "Hey, this is GOOD!"
6. Gazelle
7. Which blogs did you read before you started blogging?
8. Your turn

Which lead to my response:

1. You know, I've always loved that.
2. Tcha! Naturally.
3. Instant, not the cooked, I hope.
4. Snicker. And HE ATE IT!
5. Stumbling fits.
6. Aw, that's nice. I'll take it.
7. It all started with me being pregnant and reading the diaries on iparenting, including Julia S and Linda, they then created their blogs (Here Be Hippogriffs and Indigo Girl, links in my blogroll), which lead to the rest.
8. Okey, Dokey.

There, I've posted it and should anyone desire, I will be happy to reciprocate. I liked this one because it was personal and interactive and who hasn't wanted to know what animal they remind someone of, or which Jell-O flavor they are visualized being wrestled in.

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Saturday, October 08, 2005

The "I" in Team

You all know our kid, Colin.

Very nice, 6-years-old, hangs back in most situations. Cautious, polite, a bit sensitive, a bit shy. Way too much like his parents at that age. Sure, he can be amazingly tough when faced with stitches or having his appendix out. Then, he rarely cries. A small scrape, however, and you'd think he was dying.

"So," we say, "let's put him in soccer. That'll toughen him up a bit. Teach him to compete as part of a team. Build friendships." There are two soccer clubs that practice in our wee town. One where the kids all have t-shirts hanging down to their knees, each "team" a different color, all the kids from the grade school, each set from 1 or 2 grades, depending on if said grades are combined (1st and 2nd or 4th and 5th) or not (kindergarten or 3rd). They seem to be grouped sort of by class. Friends playing together. Mis-matched shingards and hot-pink socks are fine. Most of the kids don't know what the hell they're doing. Two parent-coaches per team. The coaches, who are on the field with the kids, sort of herding them, like shepherds, calling out instructions and praise for the smallest thing, for the kids on both sides, as do the parents, who show up with chairs and blankets, sitting in clusters, all friends together.

The other team is sometimes there, at the other end of the vast field. They have the nylon official shirts, shorts, all matching shoes and socks and laces. We look at them, a bit cowed by their prowess. We do not mention them. That team cuts its players and has try-outs. On our teams, all the kids play and all the kids are cheered.

Most of "our" team's kids do get in there and go for the ball. They may not be going for the correct goal and more than once is a goal scored for the other team, but that is what makes it fun. Those goals are cheered just as loudly. Colin, bless his little cleats, dances at the back of the scrum. Occasionally foot meets ball, but mostly by random chance. Should he play little league baseball, he will be the kid out in left field looking at the clouds, his gloved hand at his side. He will spend the whole game out there, as he will not be focused enough on the action to know when it is time to change sides. He will be happy. He will lie on the grass.

Today, Charles decided to take matters into his own hands. On the drive down to the field, he tells Colin that he gets a sundae for every goal he scores. Colin negotiates the getting a sundae for every goal scored today. As he has yet to come close, Charles readily agrees. After pausing to calculate the number of sundaes should he score 100 goals, Colin proclaims himself on-board. He then decided that, instead of the sundaes, he would prefer to get donuts from the local bakery. The World's Best Donuts. Things waver as Charles makes sure he understands the fine print, meaning that only the goals Colin scores count, not the ones scored by his teammates. After some hesitating on behalf of the boy, he signs on. Let it be clear here, though, this is incentive aimed to get him actually in the game, we truly don't care if he never scores in his life, we just want him to get in there and play rather than wander around vaguely in the vicinity of the action.

The game starts. It is 4-on-4 unless one of the kids needs a bit of a time out after a ball in the face or something, then it is 3-on-3, sort of. Colin hangs back as usual. He waves his arms. He runs with the rest of the heard and does sometimes kick the ball. He seems to be having fun.

Then, with 5 minutes left in the 4th quarter, the heavens part and the music swells. Colin is suddenly alone, 3 feet from the center of the goal with the ball at his feet. All the other players are at least a few feet from him. "Kick the ball, Colin!" his coach calls. He kicks the ball.

A goal for our Boo.

A Bad News Bears moment. Timmy catches the fly ball.

Colin's face is one of delight. He grins at us. We cheer and clap. He raises his arms. Game play resumes and Colin resumes his vague chasing of the ball, in the back of the action, perhaps even less attentive, but can you blame him?

Afterward, we have hugs and congratulations and head off to buy The World's Best Donuts (if Colin gets one, we all do, of course) with the World's Best Son.

Can't beat that.


Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Learning Experience

Note to self: When at the park, please remember that a solid hour on the swing for Sara is equivalent to being at sea in a small boat in a storm without any Dramamine.

It would be best to cut her off at a half-hour.

Also, please remember to refill the baby wipes container in the car and wash her clothes tomorrow.

That is all.


Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Inevitable and Unavoidable

Yes, we have been anticipating it for, well, years, really. Expecting it for a year and a half, certainly.

At 6:22 am, today, CST it happened.

We hit and killed a deer.

(Really, Jamie, I am not trying to copy you.)

Tootling along the Highway 69, just past Monroe, sipping coffee, listening to the news (NPR, natch) I make the fatal comment that apparently needed punishing by the gods:

"Wow, we're making really good time. Almost too good."

I really do know better. It was just a slip of the lip, but there the words hung and I couldn't take them back.

No more than a minute later, we saw them as we flew along at 60 mph, on our side of the road, coming up from a deep, broad ditch, the two of them. The lead Bambi paused, gathering strength, as we slowed as much as we safely could, her companion pausing at her shoulder. Then, truly seeming in super-slo-mo, she leapt, landing smack-dab in front of us.

Through the air, she flew, landing with the scripted thud. The look of disbelief on her companion's face was clear. Apparently, they always knew she was not the brightest in the herd, but, jeez, they always thought she was at least smarter than Doris, who lay down the road, an orange spray-paint mark on her belly, awaiting disposal from the efficient road-kill crew.

Of note, last year, the state of Wisconsin had planned to ax the program that takes care of clearing carcasses from the sides of the roads. Thankfully, this did not come to pass, and animal corpses rarely remain there for more than 48 hours.

So now, the little, black car has a very symmetric dent in the hood, which will not open, and we get to pay the deductible on the insurance and get the hood replaced. We hope that is all the damage. The lights are OK and the airbags didn't deploy. We are both fine and the deer is not suffering, presumably now in a better, safer place, where she will not feel confused by the fast moving, bright lights. Still, we feel sad.

Finally, to continue Jamie's tally, Machine:2, Nature:0


Edited to say: Well, the poor little car is now admitted to the car hospital with a fractured radiator in addition to the abrasions and contusions. Expensive diagnostic tests are being arranged and surgery is scheduled. Anticipated discharge is in one week. I am a bit non-plussed to say that our insurance company has been amazing. They quickly arranged the repairs and the rental car. The grandson of the rep Charles talked to is a student at his school. (The company is headquartered in the town we work.) See, here everybody does know everyone. Not always a bad thing.


Monday, October 03, 2005

That's One Way to Say, "I Told You So."

And so, the Nobel Prize in Medicine is awarded for 2005:

Congratulate this year's recipients, Drs Warren and Marshall, for the ground breaking (or stomach eroding) finding that the bacterium, H. pylori, is the causative agent in most stomach ulcers and gastritis.

As essentially no one in the medical community gave their findings credence initially, the story goes that Dr Warren drank a beaker of H. pylori culture and gave himself a raging case of gastritis.

(We break for the inevitable Dr Jeckel and Mr Hyde jokes.)

So, raise a glass of Mylanta to these two, who furthered my mentor's assertion that everything in medicine is an infectious disease, even heart attack and ulcer.

Can't say they don't deserve the money.


Saturday, October 01, 2005

Money Well Spent

For years I have been laboring under a misconception.

Even as a child.

While delighted to find that there was money to be made in each and every lost tooth, I failed to see what the point was for the parents (erm, Tooth Fairy) to pony up for these bits of shed enamel.

Sort of like being paid to blink your eyes or yawn.

I mean, let's face it. The teeth, they are going to come out, yes? Not much point in paying for the inevitable. Not that I said anything at the time, mind you.

Now I get it.

For weeks and weeks and weeks, Colin has been toying with his first loose tooth. Barely touching it. Gently playing with it, as it hangs by a sinew. Both bottom permanent teeth have come in behind, of course.

"Wiggle the (damn) thing!" we urge him.

"As soon as it is out, the Tooth Fairy will put a dollar under your pillow. A dollar! For you to spend how ever you want to! A WHOLE DOLLAR!" we extol.

Finally, yesterday, at school, it could hang by its thread no longer and gave up the ghost.

Proudly, he brought it home, sealed in a district envelope.

This morning, he found the dollar.

He hasn't stopped wiggling its brother tooth, since.

It's not a reward, it's a bribe.