Archive for May, 2010


Bet YOUR Mom Can’t Do This…. (I’m Shocked That Mine Can)

May 9th, 2010 at 9:30 am » Comments (3)

Around here, I don’t really do holiday themed posts. I ignore holidays usually. Or I write something that is sort of a nod in the general direction of a holiday, but it is often somewhat irreverent. Just a warning. This is one of those.

It started a couple of  mornings ago. I was in bed. Asleep, after a mostly sleepless night. There was a lot of little boy giggling coming from the living room. My first thought was, “I should yell. Or get up. But someone is up to no good out there. Or ALL of them, more likely.” But that’s awfully suspicious of me. And it’s just laughing. And I went back to sleep.

Seth-4yr came in, shirtless, and said, “Mommy! Look what I can do!” And he stood with his back to me and sort of wiggled his elbows around behind him.

“Yes. That is very special. Thank you for showing me.” And I nodded and actually opened my eyes so he would think I had truly appreciated this and go away real fast.

Then Caden-6yr came and did it. And Ethan-10yr. And there was much giggling, particularly when I thanked them and oohed and ahhed over their shirtless back wiggling displays. I figured it was about muscles. Isn’t it usually?

I didn’t understand what was so funny, but they’re three little boys and I often do not get their humor. It doesn’t bother me – this is actually a very good thing. And I was tired. I was just glad they were amusing themselves and laughing and not hurting each other because then I could stay in bed a few more minutes.

And then… Mike goes out to the living room and I hear him say, “Uh. Wow. Did you show Mom?”  And then add, “Really? Well, maybe you better show her again.”

And Seth-4yr came and did it again. And it made no sense. But he laughed his little head off when I seemed impressed.

Mike left with the two older boys, who thankfully put on shirts and were off to school. So I called.

“What are they doing? With their backs…?”

And the answer?

“They are ‘making extra butts’ on their backs.”

I was wide awake by this point and blown away at the bizarre nature of that statement. What? Why would anyone do that? Why would THREE anyones do that? I have been giving positive reinforcement all morning long to the extra butts my kids are making by squishing their shoulderblades together?

Only boys would try to make extra butts. Geez.

I know how the confusion went on so long. My kids will not say “butt” around me. They’ll say, “Hey Dad, check it out, we’re making extra butts,”  to Mike, but not to me. And I’m good with that. I’m the REASON for that. Those little babies can have ‘bottoms’ forever, and never say ‘butt’ and they usually honor that preference.

So later I take Seth-4yr over to my mom’s and we have lunch and I leave him for a nap with her and I tell her the story. And she’s equally taken aback by the entire concept. (ha. no pun intended… well, whatever.)

And so imagine my utter shock when later – at a nice Mexican restaurant – my mother says, “Seth-4yr and I discovered I have a new talent.”

And might I just add… my mother is kinda classy. That thing my sister and I do where we snort like pigs when we laugh and fall down and cry while laughing* and trip all the time just because? We didn’t get that from her. She’s reserved and has a certain grace I never will.

So you’ll understand that it took awhile to sink in that my mother was saying she can make an EXTRA BUTT on her BACK.

There was gasping and incoherent “Whaaa? Nuh UH! MOTHER!” when her meaning did sink in. And then I said, “Fine. I really want to be there when you tell my sister all about how you can do that. I do NOT want to miss that conversation.”

Seth-4yr’s bonus butt:

Ethan-10yr’s:

and somehow Caden-6yr forgot how to make an extra butt on his back, but it’s okay because he made a sharpei puppy instead.

Happy Mother’s Day, yall.

* that link explains a LOT and is suggested required reading for those who have not seen my sister and I snort like pigs and might one day and thus need to be prepared. For those that have witnessed it, my apologies, and there’s nothing you can read that will erase that sensory experience.


A Roy, Elvis, Larry, and John kind of day

May 6th, 2010 at 4:55 pm » Comments (2)

it’s a kids with bright red and green popsicles outside kind of day, but the kind where that isn’t as cheerful as it sounds

and where you wait around all day for a dishwasher repair man  who looks just like John Denver to show up

and tell you that it isn’t really broken

and you shouldn’t have been doing all those dishes by hand after all

and a well meaning husband must have hit the “Turbo” button one time and caused it to sound all crazy and broken

but that’s ok

because men should never receive anything but appreciation if they load and start the dishwasher

even if they do it wrong

kind of day.

It’s the sort of day where I find myself slowly driving down Larry’s street and realizing I haven’t been this pathetic over a boy since 9th grade.

Also, it’s a hard act to pull off when Larry lives on a cul de sac.

Also, it’s one thing when you and your friends do that in 9th grade.

But much worse when it’s you and your kids and it’s all about a cat.

A cat named Larry.

So then the boys and I applied temporary tattoos

because it is that kind of day.

Caden-6yr wanted  me to have a matching yellow floral ‘bracelet’ tattoo. And so I do.

And an aqua tulip on my right hipbone because, eh. Why not.

I kept hoping the John Denver-ish dishwasher repair guy would sing a little “Thank God I’m a Country Boy,” and really he shoulda since he didn’t have any real work to do

given that the dishwasher was FINE

and all.

But he didn’t.

It is that kind of day.

One time on a roadtrip with my mom she was in charge of all things musical and laughed when she found my playlist entitled, “melancholy.”

“That must be a mistake. No one has a playlist called that. You don’t really mean it that way…?”

And I defended it. Because it is. Elvis singing “Kentucky Rain” and Roy Orbison singing “Crying” and a million others is SO melancholy.

And halfway into our road trip she said, “Yeah. This is melancholy.” And we were both depressed and I was making awful time because I’d slowed down unintentionally with all the dreariness.

But we got there anyway.

Of course.

And I learned not to unleash Roy on just any occasion.

Which is why I haven’t. Today. With the whole unleashing Roy thing.

John Denver would have been so much better.

It’s that kind of day.


Feline Soap Opera

May 4th, 2010 at 10:02 pm » Comments (3)

Yesterday was a soap opera around here. It started with a small boy showing up unannounced in order to meet his daddy for the first time.

And this is the baby-daddy:

That’s Charlo. Our cat. Who gets out occasionally, despite our best efforts, and is not ‘fixed’ due to a heart murmur and the vet’s advice that he not be anesthetized.

And yesterday, a cat who looked eerily similar showed up. As if to say, “Ah. This is where the Fluffy, Pretty-Boy Cats live. And I am that. So here I am. And I’d like to meet my daddy. Meow.”

For kids’ purposes, we name all strays we rescue “Visitor.” We’ve always done this. It helps whenever the owner shows up and claims them and they go away and we can say, “It was only visiting. It was never ours.”  And behind the kids’ backs, we discuss names. And behind our backs, the kids discuss names. But we all pretend we’re not doing it, and it’s dysfunctional, and I like it and I’m not changing it.

And I liked the name, “Larry.” Yes, I did.

So Larry proceeded to hang out in our garage (because we closed the door behind him and wouldn’t let him out) all day and act just. like. Charlo. And look just like Charlo, down to the most minute physical traits. And convince my mother and I completely that he was SO Charlo’s kitty-baby. And he is. I am still convinced that Larry is Charlo’s  son.

So Mom and I are in the garage, sitting on kid-size foam life preservers and holding/brushing the cat and she says to me, “If he’d shown up with Charlo’s celery green eyes, it’d be 100% DNA proof.”

At this point I broke into song. If you can call it that. And I can’t sing and I compensate with extra twang which is an awful thing to do – especially to a Tanya Tucker song –  but off I went.  And because my mother figured I had a point (or had no other choice), she just waited it out.  Even though it was probably way painful.

“What’s your mama’s name, child?
What’s your mama’s name?
Does she ever talk about a place called New Orleans.
Has she ever mentioned a man named Buford Wilson?

Just because he asked a little green-eyed girl a question,

Inside the old man’s ragged coat, they found a faded letter.
It said: “You have a daughter and her eyes are Wilson green.”

I couldn’t remember “Buford” and substituted “Owen.” Which is kinda fantastic, right?  (And those are not all the lyrics, just the ones I could sorta remember)

Anyway. A plan was hatched. My mom would keep Seth-4yr while I posted “Found Cat” signs and took Larry to the vet. He couldn’t meet his daddy until he had a health check. We are sentimental but cautious.  Also, we didn’t know if Larry was a boy or a girl. We are not farm women. Or doctors. We looked. Laugh if you must, but we just couldn’t tell.

The vet (as previously reported here) is WEIRD. He took one look at Larry and said, “This isn’t a stray. It’s someone’s pet. Well. Maybe not. He has balls.”

Kinda thought I’d bite my bottom lip in half.

The vet assistants who work there were fascinated at the story of Larry’s parentage and instinctual pilgrimage to the FatherLand.

We decided he needed an HIV/Leukemia test and all shots. And so he got them. And later Mike gave him a bath, because Mike is the designated Cat Washer in the family. Because… claws. Eh.

And THEN?  Some lady called and said he was hers. And she knew about the broken, golden heart shaped locket that only his true mother knew about. Nevermind, that was Annie. Okay, but she knew about the mustache. And that’s the same thing. And then she came and took him. Took him away. She seemed a bit surprised that he had an AIDS and Leukemia test and had been vaccinated AND bathed and pretty much had a real big day. When we rescue a cat around here, we really rescue the tar right out of that cat. (ohstop. it makes sense to me.)

I didn’t tell her how he’s really my grand-cat and Charlo is his daddy and his name is Larry and I want partial custody or every other weekend visitation rights, and also, I had told the vet he would be back for castration next week, because he’s MY KITTY.

The lady thanked us, gave me money for the vet expenses, and told us his name was Caesar.

I smiled and gritted my teeth to keep from saying, “Like the salad? Or the other, more historical one? And neither one of those is good. REALLY, lady? What’s wrong with LARRY?”

Charlo was mad. All day. He was mad about the meowing Larry in the garage. When Charlo is stressed, he beats up the 80 lb. dog. A lot. He can be mean.

Notice how Duke is imploring me with his big doggie eyes to save him. Instead of getting up and walking away. Or acknowledging that he is bigger and doesn’t have to take this.   That never occurs to him.

We weren’t very sympathetic to Charlo’s plight. At one point I poked him in the ribs and said, “I’m pretty sure you brought this one on yourself, Charlo.” And then he went and swatted the dog again just to let off steam. Seth-4yr said to him, “Hello…?! DENIAL!?”

But Seth-4yr says that to everyone all the time and it just happened to totally make sense when he said it to Charlo. It usually doesn’t.

Seth-4yr and I drove by the kitty’s street twice today. Slowly. Looking for Larry. Cruising with total intent to cat-nap.

I’m hoping he comes back.

This soap opera needs a happy kitty reunion ending.