Showing posts from March, 2009

Hit him with your stick!

I have one sister and no brothers. We took figure skating, dance and brownies, and I played the piano. I have vague memories of a skating pageant where I was in one of two lines of little girls who skated up on either side of our skating teacher who was dressed like a princess, and when she lifted her head up to skate her solo I was surprised at how much makeup she was wearing. Her lipstick was thick and sparkly, and in retrospect this seems kind of gross to me, but since I was six I probably thought it was beautiful. I also remember a dance number where all the mothers were going nuts trying to scotch tape everyone's bunny ears upright. So my family as a whole was completely unversed in the niceties of the out-of-town hockey tournament. That has now all changed. Somewhat. photo credit creative commons license As far as I can tell, the experience consists of a welter of mind-numbing logistics and frenetic activity alternating with periods of absolute boredom OR bacchanalian d

In which I forget to review the actual book.

I had one of those meaningless-but-cool things happen, where after one of my last posts a friend mentioned reading The Road by Cormac McCarthy, and I had just picked it up at the library the day before, so I figured that was a sure sign that I should read it. Right away, I mean, as opposed to shuffling it somewhere into the dangerous, teetering triple pile of books on my bedside table and then renewing it the maximum number of times allowed and finally having to read it against a deadline because I'm trying not to singlehandedly subsidize the Ottawa Public Library this year. So anyway... The Road. I said my friend mentioned reading it, because you couldn't properly say she recommended it, which kind of makes sense. There are books where it seems ludicrous to say "I loved it" even when you feel glad you read it. It got me thinking about what I'm looking for when I read, which you might think I should have done before considering how much of my life I spend doing

Excuse me while I conspicuously consume this space.

Eve and I went to the mall on Thursday. I had bought jeans for Angus at Old Navy on Wednesday and they were too tight (ended up exchanging them for ones that were too big -- I know this is tangential, but WHY is there only 'slim' and 'husky' with nothing in between? But also, adjustable waistbands rock) and we were looking at a rather drastic pants shortage. We exchanged the jeans and had lunch in the food court, and practiced getting on the escalator, and it was lovely. But I also caved in and bought her a little Disney Princess doll. And this is why I can't 'go shopping'. I don't really get 'going shopping'. In university, I had friends that would just drive around on the week-ends looking for different places to walk around buying stuff. When I shop, it's a hard-target search, get in, get what you need, get out. Because as long as I don't see stuff, I don't want it. When I'm out where all the stuff is, I end up buying


I read in the paper last night that it's normal to have 'feelings of lethargy and irritability' that last up to a week after the time change. (I know that's not earth-shattering news, but I always like to mark an occasion where somebody puts in writing that something about me is normal). I have sizeable sleep issues. I know most parents or people with jobs or maybe everyone these days has sleep issues. I'm not sure exactly where mine stack up against the norm, but they suck. And it's hard to ignore them, since they're in my face every twelve to sixteen hours. photo credit Creative Commons License My main problem is something I think of as sleep inertia. That thing about a body at rest tending to stay at rest and ditto for a body in motion? My body prefers to stay awake when it's awake and asleep when it's asleep. Therefore sleep is always long in coming and it's almost invariably torture trying to wake up, even when I've theoretical

Book Review: Couldn't Keep it to Myself, by Wally Lamb and the Women of York Correctional Institute

I just finished the book Couldn't Keep it to Myself: Testimonies from our Imprisoned Sisters by Wally Lamb and the Women of York Correctional Institute, and I can't stop thinking about the book, and prisons, and power. One morning I was lying in bed pushing the snooze button more times than I care to admit, and I kept hearing pieces of this interview that finally made me stop pushing the snooze button. It was a man talking about visiting a women's prison and running a writing group. It became clear that he was a well-known writer, but I didn't find out who he was until the end of the interview, when I already knew I was going to have to read this book. I haven't read anything written by Wally Lamb, but at this point I would willingly be his slave in any capacity required. Lamb was asked to visit the prison and speak to the women after a rash of suicides and a cutting back of educational programs. A single visit turned into a bi-monthly (bi-weekly? whatever means h

Book Review: The Man Who Melted by Jack Dann

I tried sitting around bugging my kids to do something cute and bloggable for a couple of hours today. Didn't work. In fact, they asked to go visit my Dad. I guess I was being kind of annoying. My Mom is away helping my sister out after surgery, and I thought my Dad would probably really appreciate the break from eating whatever he felt like and watching curling twelve hours a day. Then I thought maybe I should try to post on something of import, something timely and fact-filled, with figures, and footnotes. But then I realized it was dinner time and my kids were gone and my husband was staying to have a drink with my Dad, so I decided to eat my stir-fried broccoli beef and watch the L Word instead. We're all supposed to be trying to achieve balance, right? I think something deep within me actually hates and resists balance. We did a couple of weeks of the fun party family -- we cooked, we entertained, we were festive and social -- which was great and made me feel like I wa