Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Blueberry Blues

I recently saw about the first half hour of this movie called “My Blueberry Nights” (it was very awful, and I had to change the channel before my eyes started bleeding,) about this girl who gets unceremoniously dumped by her cheating boyfriend.  She spends the first bit of the movie skulking around this diner that they used to go to and develops a friendship of sorts with the guy (manager? owner?) who works there - who is played by Jude Law.  In one scene, she wonders out loud why her ex dumped her; why he’s with someone else - is she prettier?  smarter?  And Jude lays a pretty sage explanation on her that goes something like this:  

See this chocolate cream pie?  I’m lucky if I have one slice left at the end of the night.  Same with the apple.  But look at this blueberry pie (which is untouched.)  There’s nothing wrong with it - it’s a perfectly fine pie, and it’s actually quite delicious;  it’s just that people ordered the chocolate cream or the apple instead.  It’s not the pie’s fault, people just wanted something else.  They made different choices.   

That blew me away.
I think I am a blueberry pie.
We have lived in suburbia for about four and a half years now, and I still have not made any friends.  Well, to be honest, I was pretty tight with my neighbor, but alas, her husband got a transfer and they now live a good 600 miles away.  I have made acquaintances - you know, those people you see in the school yard or on the soccer field with your kids - moms that say ‘hi’ to you, and ask how you’re doing, even though they really don’t give a rat’s ass whether you just won a beauty pageant or were recently diagnosed with leprosy.  I actually tested this theory out a couple of weeks ago when asked by one of the ‘regulars’:
Other Mom:  Hi!  How’ve you been?
Me:  Oh, hanging in there.  Just trying to keep my head above the laundry!  (ha. ha.)
Other Mom:  Oh.  Uhh...
Me:  I swear, Peyton has more costume changes in one day than Madonna!  (ha. ha.)  Ugh, it never ends, right?  So how are you?
Other Mom:  Oh look, I think Ashley’s having trouble with her swing.  I’d better go get her.  Nice talking to you!  
I doubt that woman has ever been happier to see her child in peril.
It sounds kind of random, what I did (and seeing it written on paper, I sound waay more manic than I actually was, honest,)  but I really thought that this might start a dialogue, you know, an opening for her to initially commiserate with me and maybe share a bit of herself.  Instead, she fled the scene like her ass was on fire.  
Having kids goes hand-in-hand with having playdates, and those playdates also offer most moms the opportunity to meet and forge friendships with other moms.  I mean, these moms already have some things in common:  their kids are friends, they’re usually about the same age, and they don’t live too far from each other.  Other variables include the coolness of their husbands and the age/sex of their other children relative to your own.  Once all (or at least some) of these things come together, it should be fairly easy to find some common ground unless the other mom  a) is a notorious gossip, b) thinks she’s way better than you, or c) is crazy as a budbug (more on this last one in a later post.)
From a distance, that particular mom seemed to be relatively well-adjusted, and I always thought she was pretty nice, but faced with that unexpected interaction, she just completely shut down.  Was it me?  Maybe my reputation had made it’s way around the school yard, although for the life of me, I can’t figure out just what that reputation might be.  Maybe I had something on my face.  Maybe she thought I fell under category “c” above.  
Maybe I’m just a blueberry pie.
Everything is back to “normal” now.  That other mom is hanging out with her circle of friends in the school yard - one of the many circles I don’t fit in to, and she still says, “Hi, how are you?”  (although now I think I detect a hint of fear in her voice that I might actually tell her.)  I have taken to waiting in my car until school lets out.  I’ll try again another time, with another mom, but it’s tough putting yourself out there and feeling an icy cold breeze in return. 
Besides, I’m starting to get really good at “Angry Birds.”

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Carpe Diem! (definitely tomorrow...)

I constantly tease Derek about his shameless procrastination.  "Wellllll, I can't really get to "X" until "Y" and "Z" happen."  What drives me bat-shit is, the thing that needs to happen first is always something I need to do, as in "I can't organize the basement until you go through everything."  To which my reply goes something like this, "I can't go through everything until the basement is better organized."  It's like the seventh circle of 'pass the buck.'  So the running joke is that Mars needs to be in retrograde, and all the planets aligned before "X" can be done (I am not an astronomy major.)  Only this time,  I'm the one waiting for the planets, and there's nobody to pass that buck to.
I've been tossing around the idea of starting a blog for a while now, mostly because I'm an incredibly interesting person, and I really should bestow my fabulousity on others...  Okay, not really.  I don't have any delusions of grandeur, but aspirations to mediocrity, in which I can get my kids to places on time, I actually cook dinner every night instead of asking the age-old question of "Who wants pizza?" and I don't feel (or at the very least, don't care if I feel) like I need to over-explain myself to most of the people I interact with.  I mean, why do I think it's necessary to explain to the girl at Starbucks that I'm buying an organic milk box because I ran out of juice boxes for Jack's lunch?  So I guess my reasoning is this:  I can slap together a decent sentence and misery loves company.
Anyway, when I was first setting this thing up, all these good topic ideas were swirling around my head.  I should write them down.  Nah, it's fine - I'm sure I'll remember (it is here that I'll confess to never remembering anything that I haven't written down EXCEPT my credit card number!)  So I'll settle down and get this page together so I can regale the internet with my wit and wisdom.  Except it's not that easy for my infected mind because I am now compelled to view every possible permutation of page design available.  Then fonts.  Then colors.  And what about placement?  Well, shit, now I've fallen down the rabbit hole.  
Well, my planets are finally aligned.  It is now two weeks later that I'm posting this, because I got it in my head that I really need to know everything right now.  My final epiphany came as I looked up at the clock at three o'clock this morning after spending the previous two and a half hours trying to put a Twitter button on my page. As it stands, that button is in a weird place, but it works, and I can't figure out how to relocate or even remove it, so there it will remain until I decide to investigate further - which may be never because it takes a long time to get over the trauma of getting your head stuck in that hole.
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