Monday, March 19, 2007

Guy stuff: Junk in the trunk, Hard Ware, etc

Well, this weekend was chock full of bloggables, and now that I am becoming a famous blogger (note the throngs of fans posting comments here), my friends are sort of shyly, reluctantly into it. I was in Vermont skiing (and, clearly an indication of global warming or the world having gone completely kerflooey, there was POWDER in Vermont) and all weekend long, someone would say something witty or a thing would happen that makes you go "hunh?" and inevitably someone would say, "Lynn, you'll have to put this in your blog...." So, whatever it is, there is now a zeitgeist of some kind -- a bloggy, if foggy, momentum -- and so I'll keep doing this and see where we go.

I'm sleepy and my muscles are sore from skiing in powdery bumps with a bunch of hot shots (I suck at skiing bumps), so right this second I can only remember two things that were designated as bloggable. One was a new phrase I learned that I am somewhat embarrassed to really like.

We were with J and A, two younger, single guys and the fun of that is getting to check out girls and attempt to act tough and cool and irreverent with them. I ruin it by asking too many questions and sounding like a nerdy, cultural anthropologist ("So, when you see a hot girl, what lingo is it that you use these days to describe her?") .... J and A were very good sports. They said something about our waitress having a lot of "junk in the trunk." I found this hilarious, and asked 52 questions about where it comes from and what specifically it means. I like how it feels to say it. The words are like little matching marbles in your mouth. Oh and, for those who don't know, it means having a big butt.

I found out later from my hip friend Q that the originator of the phrase is the woman from Black Eyed Peas, a rock group that even I have heard of. The boys say this singer is hot, and Q confirmed this. So, anyway, add "junk in the trunk" to the approved lexicon -- it's not PC but it's too good to censor.

The other bloggable I remember occurred when my boyfriend (who shall be called D, I guess) and I stopped at a gas station on the way home from Vermont ...

Because I sit very close to the rest rooms in my office I have had on my mental to-do list "buy air freshening stuff" for about a week now. So at the checkout counter inside the gas station, I saw these little glass bottles that said "liquid aroma," "the world's most powerful aroma!" etc... so I picked one up and thought hmmmmm, maybe powerful enough for the office bathroom. However, just as I was holding it up to my face, scrutinizing the label, which said "HARD WARE," the lovely Pakistani man behind the counter informed me that "thees ees forrrr men, for thee sex."

When D came in, he checked it out and lickety-split he and the guy had this VERY open conversation, as only guys can, in which Pakistani check-out man told D exactly how to use the stuff ("two or sree meenutes before thee sex") and confirmed that yes, it actually works, or apparently did for him. Eew. I just stood there, amazed, trying to act all cool, like this was an everyday kind of thing, talking about erections with a cash register guy while paying for a bag of chips. Did we buy the stuff? Are you kidding?

Needless to say, I have GOT to go to Pier One and buy some of those reeds that stick out of a vase of fragrance oil.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Divorce, babies, and existential angst

Q sent me an amazing article from marie claire magazine -- it's a woman's story of splitting from her husband. It is excruciatingly real. The take-away for me, or one of them, and probably for Q too, is the quote from this woman's friend who said "I finally figured out that no one will be grading me at the end of all this." And the woman says she sat there, still "gunning for the A." Do we all do this? I do it. Do men? I swear I grade myself at every turn, in each of my roles (hmm, today? C for mothering, B+ for daughtering, D for friend-ing)....

She talks about men being different -- saying that smart women choose men who make their lives easier but all men choose women based on how those women make them feel. (I think, finally, I have chosen someone based on both those things.)

Anyway, it's a really sad article. I have a cold, empty spot of despair in me that is my failed marriage (my lost wedding rings are there, too) and it will be a part of me forever. And it contains all the sadness for my son who doesn't get to have his two parents at the same time and has to suffer the consequences of cold shoulders and his game boy being left at the other house. And the grief for my husband, who has lost so many precious life moments being hard and angry and hurt.

I was thinking about having a baby again this morning (it's on my mind a lot these days) and doing the usual, lightning-fast, litany of pros and cons in my mind. One thing on that list is this: Who do I think I am, wanting to bring another soul into this world, when I have a failed marriage and genetic predispositions toward things like alcoholism and anxiety, when my only son is in therapy, my parents need me to take care of them, and I just went back to work full-time? This is no time to be having a baby, right?

But I can't quite get there. When his dad and I leave the planet, assuming it's at least 15 or so years from now, my son's entire family will consist of a few cousins, and none of them even live in our state. He may have step siblings, but that would be it. Today, being an only child, divorced, with my dad so ill, I wish more than anything in the world that I just had a sister or brother. To help me help them, yes, but also just to cry with. Someone else whose heart would be aching in the same exact way.

Oh my, heavy heart this morning. Sheesh. It's okay. Just some healthy introspection. There's snow, and I'm going to Vermont with my love, and I'm going to jettison the guilt about leaving my parents and my son, and go have some fun.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

really random ramblings

I'm still trying to wrap my mind around the whole blogging thing. My friend, who I shall refer to as Q, says she could never blog because she's too private a person. She doesn't even want me to mention her in this blog, thus the Q silliness. I'm not a private person at all, obviously, and never have been. But what is the point of public journaling? I'm not sure, but it carries with it some mysterious appeal for me. Maybe because writing for publication is what I do for a living ... it seems natural and, somehow, personally productive.

So I will continue, because (just like breathing) this is what I do -- and what we all do. We just keep on. Don't we?

My dad keeps on, despite having lost 20% of his body weight and having just endured yet another hospital procedure in which they installed a feeding tube in his stomach.

Q asked me today what I did with my wedding rings after I split from my husband. In the name of courage, catharsis, and facing our demons when we have the inclination and strength, I am going to say here in writing what happened. I carried my rings around with me in a little zipper compartment in my wallet for at least a year. I was afraid that if I took them out and put them somewhere "safe," I would lose them. I could not decide on a place. I lived in a rental house for 8 months, then moved again. Maybe there were other reasons. My wallet seemed like a good place. That wallet began looking very shabby and I somehow acquired a brand new wallet and switched to it. I have no recollection at all, but knowing myself I am quite certain I just chucked the old wallet. Into the garbage. Probably on top of coffee grinds and gunk from the sink drain.

One of the rings was made from my grandmother's wedding band (my very special grandmother who died when I was 10), plus a diamond of hers, plus a diamond of my ex-husband's grandmother, plus a third diamond he and I bought. The other ring was lined with diamond chips, also taken from my grandmother's ring. I probably don't need to say more. I haven't been able to think about it, never mind write anything.

Total change of subject. I am an editor for a website, and someone posted in the "men's room" forum a tip saying that Vick's Vapo Rub works well for jock itch (and also apparently for chafing under women's breasts, for women who have that problem -- mine aren't big enough). The title of his post: Vapo Nut Rub.

I was going to blog about plunging the office toilet yesterday and giving myself the silent Good Office Samaritan award. I also considered blogging about George, who I met in a bowling alley, had a very brief conversation with, and have now received two phone calls from. (He tracked me down and called me at work.) He asked if he can call monthly and see if I'm still "taken." I am not creeped out, just flattered.

And just for the record, I am a total SLAVE to praise. Flattery will get you everywhere. I need to be stroked like no one I know. (Q has the same disease, and we often wear the same clothes and say the same things, but I think my affliction is actually more serious than hers.)

Is this boring? Just checking.

TTFN -- the snow is coming ....

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Brooke Shields and lobster fra diavolo

This past Sunday was a 10.

1. I met Brooke Shields and bonded with her at a kid's birthday party in New York City. She was beautiful, magnetic, unassuming, lovely. We talked about the guilt of working a lot and not spending more time with our kids. I forgot to tell her that we were born two weeks apart.

2. My spot-on, amazing, charming, gets-me-like-noone-ever-has boyfriend told me that standing next to Brooke I was just as pretty.

3. We drove out of the city to the world-famous Arthur Avenue in the Bronx (my first time), got a great window table at Umberto's with our three adorable boys, donned plastic bibs and dove into an order of lobster fra diavolo, washed down with glasses of chianti. Our kids were behaving remarkably well, the sun was shining, the sauce was killer spicy and good and got all over me, and we made out in the middle of the restaurant like we were the only people in the world.

I have some tough stuff going on in my life right now, so days like that are incredibly welcome and healing and give me the strength to face the rest.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sushi and six-year-olds

My friend Elana and I took our sons out for sushi last night. It was Saturday night. I don't know what we were thinking. My boyfriend was out to dinner with his neighbor, who is also the last woman he dated, who is also my neighbor's sister (and by the way she's hot) .... and Elana's husband had a stomach virus. So we ordered all this delicious stuff, including a sake tasting -- 6 little cups of sake (sooo good), from sweet and cloudy white to clear with a kick like grain alcohol. The boys ate yakitori (Zach calls it chicken on a stick). My son, a slightly more adventurous eater, also ate salad, some of Elana's miso soup, and the tobiko off the top of our wasabi tobiko roll. The boys had portable electronic games with them, and we actually had a pretty nice time. There was a major soy sauce spill that resulted in a table flood, but that was about it. Our boys say they're best friends and want to be friends forever. They said in the car that they want their graves to be next to each other. They are like Oscar and Felix, they're so different, but they adore each other and make each other laugh like nobody's business.

I love my friend Elana, too.

Okay, really good song, kind of haunting: Damien Rice's 9 Crimes. Go listen.

Ooh, it's late. I was going to write about other stuff. I told David tonight that his shiksa girlfriend (me) made possibly the best chicken soup ever. It's really good -- lots of white meat, big pieces, and perfect savory broth seasoned with Penzey's Spices (www., which are the BEST and make food taste light years better.

Good night.

Friday, March 9, 2007

And we're off.

So now I blog, therefore I am. The reason for my blog's title ....

I am, at the moment, completely mesmerized by and obsesssed with Anna Nalick's song, "Breathe." Specifically, these lyrics:

You can't jump the tracks,
we're like cars on a cable, and
life's like an hourglass glued to the table.
No one can press the rewind button, girls,
so cradle your head in your hands ....

and breathe.
Just breathe.

More on that later. (It is just an awesome song, really, go listen.) But the thing about the word breathe, too, is that I'm really into this yoga I've been taking since August at a studio called Saraswati's (say suh-RAH-swuhteez) .... and of course breathing is what's it's all about -- one way or another, you have to breathe and it's the breathing that helps and makes everything work. Breath and breathing can be metaphors for everything that matters, too, and for life itself, so .... right?

More on all of that later. I have to get back to work. So, cheers, welcome to my blog. I can't believe I have a blog.