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November 29, 2009

And then my ice-cold heart slowly began to melt...

When Seest0r and I hop on the bus for on our excursions, she enjoys playing with my iPod on the way there and back. Sometimes I'll have her listen to some music, and if she likes it I'll burn it on a CD for her. Lately, she's been filling my woefully empty calendar with important dates like Christmas, New Years and her birthday.

Yesterday, while on our way to see a ballet performance, she started fiddling with the note function and wouldn't let me see what she was writing. When she was done she got a big grin on her face and turned it so I could see.

So verklempt. So very, very verklempt was I.

November 27, 2009


When my 9th grade geometry teacher got herself with child, we had substitute teachers for a good chunk of the year while she birthed and cared for her spawn. There was the dirty, bearded man who looked like Santa and smelled of vodka, a couple of quavery-voiced ladyfolk, and a longterm guy I'll call Mr. Mullet. He sported a very greasy business/party combo and was entirely awesome.

Exhibit A: Our first order of business when we came to the unit on matrices was to watch The Matrix.

Exhibit B: One day he came across two pounds of fudge he wanted to get rid of. He announced to the class that whoever ate the entirety in the remainder of the class period would be the proud owner of 70 shiny extra credit points. The New Kid, who no one had ever heard speak a word, immediately volunteered. Throughout the next half hour or so, he methodically worked his way through those bricks. Sure enough, he choked it down and went from a C to an A. It was the stuff of legend.

He soon transferred to the city's private school and I thought I would never again lay my eyes upon the one I called Fudge.

Fast forward three years to the summer before senior year. My buddy had convinced me the time was nigh for me to "get my drink on." She led me to a houseboat in the west end of town hosted by a kid named Squirrel. I didn't know anyone there besides my friend and her boyfriend, but one of the kids looked kind of familiar. It took me a while to realize who he was, but after a plastic cup of Beefeater, straight up, I slurred, "You're the kid who ate the fudge!" And indeed he was.

Fast forward another seven years to last night. I was at my dear buddy's house enjoying a lovely Portland Orphan Thanksgiving (also known as T-Give-Sauce, according to my younger brother's Facebook status). It was a gathering of mostly Minnesotans, and several were even from my hometown. I introduced myself to a couple I hadn't seen before. I bet you can see where this is going... the dude was the kid who ate the fudge! I fudge you not! Amazing.

I'm now expecting him to make an appearance at other meaningful life events. Like my first traffic ticket. Or at the birth of my third child. Or the next time I throw up (which won't be for YEARS...)

November 23, 2009

Seen in the hood

I'm glad someone's finally working to put an end to the evil despotism of the dreaded fiery sauces of the world. My mouth thanks you.

What is more refined than having the noggins of a six-point buck, a raccoon, and a fox in your sitting room? You can get all these fauna at Flutter.

The geese at Sunlan, the lightbulb shop, are dressed in their Turkey Day finery.

The ants have all gone to their earthly graves, the fruit flies have been vanquished. But the green and silver glamour beetles are peaking this week.

"I have lost my pet serpent, Yggdrazilla, near Le Jardin de la Font Aride. He is fond of the concrete urban jungle, he is drawn to the hum of automobile traffic as he has a voracious appetite for four wheeled things, like Hummers and big diesel trucks. He has been known to chase two wheeled vehicles, but have no fear, he loves two legged creatures, in fact you might have become entranced in his gaze. Although he is friendly, please do not approach him but rather contact me at Thanks"

November 16, 2009

My New Favorite All-Purpose Joke

It is this: "Somebody must have pressed their easy button..."

This joke is endlessly adaptable for any situation. Observe:

Boyf and I had to fly home unexpectedly last Saturday to attend a funeral. Our tickets were for 5:30 in the morning and included a very short layover in Seattle. There were any number of things that could have gone wrong, including our angel friend sleeping through her 3:30 alarm and not fetching us, a massive line to check bags, a massive line at security, a delayed plane that would cause us to miss our connection, etc. But no. Everything went swimmingly. Somebody must have pressed their easy button...

Then our plane to Minneapolis got in a good half hour in advance! Somebody must have pressed their early button...

Uh oh... I'm feeling a bit airsick. Somebody must have pressed their queasy button...

AH-CHOOOO! Somebody must have pressed their sneezy button....

You get the idea. It sure beats my previous all-purpose joke: "Oh, monkeys... they're like nature's humans." I read this somewhere (sorry if it was your prose and I'm not attributing) and thought it was thoroughly hilarious. It doesn't adapt very well, however, and I find that people don't look at me as adoringly as I want them to when I bust it out apropos of nothing.

When I was in France I discovered that my humor does not translate very well. During my homestay, my French sisters would often say, "Ce n'est pas grave (It's no big deal)," when I inevitably snorted champagne through my nose onto the appetizers or tipped over a priceless Limoges vase or was so incapacitated by a bloody nose that I managed to leave my DNA on my bed linens and in a trail leading from the bedroom to the kitchen to the bathroom (true story). My response was always, "Si. C'est grave (But yes. It's very serious)" even if it was a minor infraction. They didn't get it.

My one successful overseas joke was in Israel. My travel companions and I were all eating at a lovely restaurant when we noticed our leader, Muriel, was looking a bit morose. We hatched a plan to cheer her up, and since I was the only one with a firm grasp on Hebrew it was up to me to put it into action. I flagged down the waiter and said, "Yom hellenich sameach (happy birthday)" while pointing emphatically to Muriel. "Afo sufganiot (where's the jelly donut)?" Minutes later, our dear Muriel celebrated her 29th birthday five months early.

Cake, my friends. One punchline that's universal.