Archive for March, 2011

People Who Believe Otherwise Are Born Every Minute Though

March 31, 2011

Let the record show that when a businessman pays tens of millions of his own money to secure an election, it’s a safe bet that he’s planning, one way or the other, to make back at least as much money as he spent once he gets into office.

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Who The Heck Is “She” Anyway?

March 30, 2011

Occasionally my stories have featured someone I have refered to simply as “she.”  Naturally, this has prompted the question, “Who is ‘she?'”  Even more naturally, this has prompted the answer, “‘She’ is L.’s mother.”  (That’s funnier if you’re British, but I digress.)

That’s actually about as specific an answer as I ever plan to give here, per request, because L’s Mother is Internet shy due to an unfortunate incident some time back.  A stranger used her on-line information to discover not only her birthday (this was before the days of Facebook, so in theory this was private information), but an address to have flowers delivered to her.  This was innocently (if creepily) done by someone not really thinking through how unwelcome such an action would be from someone who was in no way supposed to be able to access such information in the first place.  

L’s Mother has been Internet shy ever since.

(And no, it was not me that sent her the flowers!)

Dead Certain

March 29, 2011

Having already admitted that there are times when I’m currently feeling . . . “less than even-tempered,” shall we say, I might as well admit something else.  There are definitely days (today being one of them) where I get closer and closer to the day when I start telling people, “If I want your opinion, I’ll consult you via Ouija board.”

And if I’m really lucky, someone will be stupid enough to respond with something like, “Ouija boards are to talk with the spirits of the deceased.  Are you certain that’s what you meant?”

Yet Another Sleep-Deprived Borne Conversation Stopper

March 28, 2011

The following conversation took place around three in the morning at one point the other week: 

Me:  “Okay . . . that was a new one. Portions of my dream were in Old Gaelic.”   (I don’t speak Gaelic, by the way)

She:  “Gaelic?  Are you sure?”

Me:  “Sounded like it; lyrical tones, too many damn consonants . . . could have been Welsh, I suppose.”

Making The Grade (Part Five)

March 25, 2011

Fortunately for me, the grade for this course is a cumulative one, and as a very scary teacher of mine was fond of saying, “Falling behind early means you have all the more time to catch back up.”  This week was one of my better ones, for instance, and grading this week alone, I’d say I managed to snag a fairly solid B.  All in all, that’s about the best I can hope for. 

There are two reasons for that:

#1.  When I’m grading myself, the best I will ever give myself is a B.  I’m too close to the subject to ever really be sure I deserve to give myself an A . . . so I don’t.

#2.  The only person who really has the right to give me an A in this subject right now anyway is L., and even if he is so inclined, he still has to wait until both of us are done with this course before he can do it. 

And last I checked, neither one of us was in any hurry for that to happen.

Making The Grade (Part Four)

March 24, 2011

Annnnd almost on cue as I was getting ready to bring up the topic, today has been one series of frustrations after another.  Definitely one of “THOSE” days.

Ah well.  I was struggling for an intro to this anyway, and now at least I’ve got one.

As I’ve aluded to elsewhere, one of the most important things I want to teach L. is how to deal with, among other things, frustration.  And while I’m still holding out hope that he’ll inherit his mother’s more “Zen-like” nature, in the meantime I’m doing my best to provide for him examples of good ways to deal with the times when things don’t go the way you’d have preferred. 

Currently I think I’m succeeding about half the time in that, which is why I’m only giving myself a C grade, with pity extra credit for at least realizing, even as I said it,  just how ridiculous it was to say, “Son . . . you’re exhausted.  I’m exhausted.  So.  Just.  Go.  To.  Sleep already!”

As you might imagine, this was about as effective as the time I chased a deaf dog through a graveyard while shouting at the dog to come back.

Making The Grade (Part Three)

March 23, 2011

So there are definitely times where I feel like I’m just muddling through. 

Sometimes I find this forgivable, like when I end up telling L. things like, “Son . . . I’ve tried everything I know how to do twice now.  If something doesn’t start working soon, I’m going to have to set you in your crib for a little while because I’ve got to have a break.”  (Yes, I actually say this.  I don’t expect L. to understand what I’m saying right now, of course, but if nothing else it helps me practice for the day when he and I share a fully functioning mutual language.)  I don’t like setting him in his crib when he’s upset, but sometimes it’s necessary, as a mild bout of food poisoning taught me fairly early on, truth be told.

Other times . . . well . . .

I’ll sure I’ll forgive myself eventually . . . sometime after I’ve proven that I can handle the situation better.

Making The Grade (Part Two)

March 22, 2011

Mentally, my focus, detail tracking, and ability to multitask are suffering, but not critically so for the most part.  I can generally compensate by keeping to certain work patterns and remembering that  if I mentally set a task aside before I’m finished, telling myself I’ll finish it “sometime later,” “sometime” may well be a long time in coming.  (Establishing what the best work patterns are is work in progress, but there’s nothing new about that.)

It’s the emotional hurdles I keep stumbling over. 

Unlike some people I know (L’s Mother, for example.  Do your best to learn from her, son.), I don’t have anywhere near bottomless reserves of compassion and patience.  Empathy and understanding I can generally pull off, but my active sympathy can run out pretty quickly under a prolonged drain, and my reserves take some time to replenish.

And finding new reserves when the old ones are gone takes me even more time.

Making The Grade (Part One)

March 21, 2011

So after some obviously “more challenging than usual” weeks, a few people have wondered how things are really going here. 

Well . . .

L., with everything he’s been going through with the challenge of teething this early (and to borrow a phrase), is definitely “winning being a baby” right now.  Considering he hasn’t had the time to develop anything more than the most minimal of coping skills, he’s handling this like a champ.  He gets a definite A+.

Me, on the other hand:

C+ (The plus is included in an attempt to mollify those who might be tempted to express any “You’re being too hard on yourself” sentiments.  I know that already, but my personal opinion remains unchanged.) 

The good news is that some time back I adapted to the irregular sleep schedule (which, fortunately, isn’t too irregular, as a rule) to the point where I’m no long experiencing some level of nigh-constant physical pain.  Physically, the occasional “Annnd someone needs to watch L. for a bit because sleep is about to overtake me like it or not” moments aside, I’m doing pretty well; I’m short-tempered and easily irritated far more often than I like, but physically I’m doing okay.

Maybe THAT’S Why It’s “The Happiest Place On Earth”

March 18, 2011

Annnnnd my sleep-deprived borne conversation stopper of the week is:

She, speaking in reference to L’s critical need for sleep:  “Don’t they make baby Mickeys?”  (As in Mickey Finn.)

Me:  “Sure . . . at Disneyland.”