Friday, February 27, 2009


Stands for "sleep over scream."


My girls are hosting a slumber party, which is to say "I" am hosting a slumber party. Six ten year olds at my house.

Is anyone willing to air-express me some psychotropics? Oh, I'm not picky ... something in the anxyolytic family, or a barbituate, or perhaps, say, a nice sedating anti-psychotic?

I'll make it worth your while. Promise.

image lifted at a fanciful twist, here.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

if an unwed mother speaks into a fox microphone, does she make a worthwhile sound?

Twenty years ago we had Murphy Brown: the TV sitcom career woman who elected to be a single mom. In the speech heard round the world, then Vice President Dan Potatoe-head Quayle, accused the career woman of "mocking the importance of a father."

Now, in 2009, we have Bristol Palin: the daughter of vice-presidential wannabe, Sarah Palin.

Bristol doesn't lament being a single mom so much as having started a family too early, without having "a career" or "her own house" and without having completed her education. All valid points.

Ironic side note: Murphy had a career but no baby-daddy. Bristol has a baby-daddy but no career.

Bristol gave
an interview recently as a means of furthering her mother's national political aspirations helping "prevent teen pregnancy." In so doing, she talked about how much she loves the baby. How she didn't "regret" having the baby "at all." How she only wished she had "waited ten years."

Waited ten years to .... what? To have sex? To have unprotected sex?

Interestingly, a regret she didn't mention was being unwed. Any moment now, I'm expecting Quayle's modern day equivalent, a self-appointed
family values czar to pontificate on such a clear lapse of moral judgement. Or not, because, she is the direct descendant of one who yaks on about values.

But the whys of Bristol's marital status is none of my business. My only concern is her message to teens.

So, for the record, what does she have to say about abstinence?

"Everyone should be abstinent, or whatever, but it's not realistic." Um. Ok.
She didn't want to "get into details" of what IS realistic so that's all we get.

And if not abstinence, what options does she advocate?

She advises teens to "wait."

Newsflash for Bristol: Waiting IS abstinence. Abstinence IS waiting. The two are one and the same unless you are joining a convent.

So consider the interview a ploy to get her mother back into the national spotlight a waste of time, or worse, a public service announcement for how satisfying and fulfilling an unplanned pregnancy can be.

I know, I know. Bristol is only a teenager. She is young and naive. She is her mother's daughter untrained in the art of crafting a message.

So spare us the television appearance, the sham cause. Or if a sincere attempt, so poorly executed as to do more harm than good.

Here is this seasoned mother's message to teenagers: Unless you are prepared to have a baby, and believe me, you are not, show us your maturity. Use protection and use contraception. Condoms can be bought at your local pharmacy, grocery, discount or convenience store. Other contraceptive choices can be gotten by attending a Planned Parenthood clinic. You can click here to find the one closest to you.

I would also suggest talking to a trusted adult before you take the big step. But I know that you won't. Hardly anyone does. The decision is so personal and private and usually made in the dark of night.

On a lighter note, I offer an opinion. Most times two heads are better than one. Take helping kids' with homework. My kids go to dad with the math and mom with the social studies. Science is a toss up.

On math night and every other night? I'm awfully glad their dad is here. And so are they.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

when men should run things

Gotee Man posted a bit about a Georgia woman who took a stand against conventional wife-wisdom.

Reminded me of something a longtime friend said. A stonemason, he lives a continent away and visited recently. We hadn't seen him in a year or so. He's the kind of guy who always surprises. Just when you think you've got him figured out, you do a double take.

His wife didn't make the trip. Bummer. I like her a lot, liked her from the first moment we met. She's warm, intelligent and she doesn't take shit from nobody, least of all Stonemason.

Another old friend of Stonemason's, a rather conventional man, accompanied all of us to an outdoor gathering. We were making small talk, standing around waiting to leave for a boat ride.

Stonemason turned to his friend and said,

I've been married 25 years now. Can you believe that? Yeah, after 25 years, I pretty much run things.


Stonemason continued,

Yeah, after 25 years you accumulate a lot of appliances. A dishwasher, washing machine, garbage disposal ... So... yep. I run every single one of 'em.

Ahh, that's more like it.

Monday, February 16, 2009

strung out on black

Berry, that is.
I just got a new barakberry blackberry. I earned it after carrying around a dinosaur of a cell phone for the past few years, waiting patiently for my contract renewal date.

I've been wanting some sort of smart phone ever since I saw Obama with one got my first PDA and realized what a pain it was to keep up with two pieces of tech equipment: charged, updated and on my person. Oh wait, make that three devices, when you count my laptop. Three communication gadgets carried back and forth between home and office. There must be an easier way.

And then there's the butt problem. How does a woman carry a cell phone in her back pocket, a PDA in the other and simultaneously camouflage twenty thirty unwanted pounds of lard ass? Note to Madison Avenue: design women's dress pants with gadget pockets located somewhere besides the derriere and with a bit more style than these:

Back to the crackberry blackberry. Be careful what you wish for because when you get it you won't be able to see the tiny print on the screen, add a phone number, set your speed dial, figure out the bass-ackward keypad, or change the ring tone, even. Be prepared to spend a four day weekend with your eyes squinting at a 2x3 inch screen, shaking it, cursing at it, and realizing your brain has turned to oatmeal.

Yes, I read the manual. Yes, I took the little tutorial. Minimal help. WTF? I have a PhD and a PDA but I can't figure out how to call my own office?

I guess I should swallow my pride and take my know it all tech savvy teenager up on his offer to take over my cell phone teach me. This is why I took such care in the gestating, feeding, caring and protecting of my children, right? So they can one day surpass me and roll their eyes as if to say, "Get out of the way, moron."

But another reason for letting my son do it: Research shows that the teen brain learns so much faster than adult brains, giving them a natural edge at mastering new technology. It explains, for example, how my son's had his laptop less than a year but has already learned more shortcuts than I have picked up in twenty.

And as this video proves, it isn't just me frustrated with the crippled learning curve.
P.S. Pardon the foul language. Or if you're like me, relish it.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

show true compassion on valentine's day

Say no to divorce.


Because, like yours and mine, these kids deserve to have married parents, too.

Cheri at BlogThisMom lovingly shared pictures of her good friends Chris and Bill, and their beautiful children. She then asked her readers if we believe this family deserves the same legal protection under the law that any other family is entitled to. This reader absolutely does. So I clicked over to sign the petition.
Please do the same. And hurry! Submission deadline is February 14, 2009.

image 1 found here
imiage 2 found

Monday, February 09, 2009

tig, no taxes

So I'm sitting here during my designated, schedule-all-clear, expressly-for-the-purpose-of-doing-my-taxes, time slot. That means, making no money when we could really use some extra income and I've turned down clients so that I can get my taxes done.

When, after an impromptu lunch time rendez-vous with my special Valentine (who would be my husband, of course) (because a sluggish economy has it's perks), I turned on the comedy channel. All the better to eat my post-coital meal lunch: extra sharp cheese melted on toast with alfalfa sprouts and the last of the winter garden tomatoes.

It was then that I saw this comedian, Tig Notare (no tar, eh?), for the first time.

I just had to share. Because I'm the biggest procrastinator on the face of this earth helpful like that.

If, like me, you just have to see more of Tig, you can check out her No Moleste spot, here. And, if once is never enough, here. And then there's her very own webpage, tignation.

Ok, back to my late afternoon snack taxes.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

I missed the turn on Revolutionary Road

A couple years ago I read a review of Revolutionary Road, the book by Richard Yates. It sounded straight up my alley. National Book Award finalist. And one of my favorite storylines: the inner workings of a suburban marriage gone awry.

I was so disappointed once I got to reading it, though. The writing style was bland and uninteresting. Unsophisticated, even.

Did I get the right book? I went back to the internet. Wiki said "the novel was chosen by Time as one of the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to the present." Huh? Really?

So I have to ask. Was it just me? Did anyone else try to read this one?

Now that it's out as a movie starring Kate Winslet, one of my top female actors, I want to see it. And of cose I'm dying to see this onscreen pair together again. But as for the failed book attempt, I feel gypped. I wish I had stuck it out. Maybe once the plot made itself known I would have seen what all the fuss was about.

So as of now, my plan is to see the movie and forget about trying the book a second time. I'm one of those people who likes reading the book first. Always.

But I dunno. What do you think? Is it worth a second try?

Sunday, February 01, 2009

one year chip, one month overdue

Alcoholics Anonymous has the one year chip. Recovering addicts earn it when they have reached one full year of sobriety.

While we may not get a chip, per se, bloggers do celebrate one year of blogging, aka the blogaversary. And instead of recognizing the giving up of an addiction, the blogaversary heralds the survival of one.
For someone who had her first whim to start a blog on December 27 and then started the blog on December 27, I say "not bad." One month late in posting my one year anniversary? Par for the course. My course, that is.

When alcoholics reach their one year mark, it is a tremendous accomplishment. It means they have given up more than liquid spirits. Often they have let go of cherished activities and social events involving alcohol in order to stick to their goal. Sometimes leaving friends behind.

Similarly, blogging is not without its sacrifices. I have had to give up cherished activities, too: tidying the house, doing laundry, going to the gym, cleaning out my car, keeping faith with the yoga, keeping up with the taxes.

The AA one year chip is considered a high risk for substance abuse relapse. For letting down one's guard and falling off the wagon. Letting a year's worth of hard work slide, by popping a top and throwing back a cold one. Or two. Or twenty-two.

What happens when bloggers reach their one year mark? What are the trends? The risks?

Reaching for one too many prickly pear margaritas due to dwindling coping skills?
Out of control consumption of mass quantities of barbeque?
Delusional recollections of cowboy hats atop bare nekkid models?
Watching one too many sex videos for real women (and their partners)?

Maybe it's more subtle than all that.

Maybe it looks more like stacks of unread books. Low back pain from too many hours huddled over laptop keyboards. Night owls returning home to roost. Social rejection due to unsightly neglected leg hair. Trampled feelings of unsuspecting spouses astride the four horsemen of marriage. Folding laundry in the therapist parking lot. Hugging trees., even.

Do one year old bloggers think they should go back to their lives of pre-blogging alienation, ignorance and sloth? Caving in to such self defeating thoughts as, "I can't keep up this pace", "Who do I think I'm kidding? My writing sucks!" or, "Give it up. I'm no good at follow through." ? (Nor, it would seem, good at complex punctuation).

Take for example my habit of reading someone's excellent blog post, or being tagged for a meme. I feel immediately inspired. I start a post-in-reply. But.... sigh... interruptions, phone calls, children screeching, dinner burning ... I don't finish it. Like, ever.
I see the unfinished post in my drafts folder weeks or months later and think, "Aw hell, now it's too late to post."
Or is it? When I get around to finishing them and giving proper linkage, I'll let you decide. Or not. Only time (management) will tell.

I do know this. Like the addicts first taste of a bitter brew, I started my blog with very little idea of what I was getting into. I had thought this blog was merely a pilot, a trial run, an expedition toward professional goals. Yes, I had hoped to connect with fellow psychologists, and I did, some from as far away as New York and Australia, make that two from Australia. But little did I know that this social addiction awaited me. Little did I know I would stumble upon an engaging and welcoming community of writers, moms and friends:

I've gotten to know writing moms awaiting transit, juggling moms, and hip moms.

Moms with law degrees, moms serving hawt green beans while studying to become a lawyer.

Moms who compare, moms who keep the home fires burning, moms wearing black fishnets
and moms with secret boyfriends; moms pretending things are normal (aren't we all?), and moms pretending things are normal while recovering from an affair; hot flushing moms emptying their nests; moms in mighty crisis , moms passing zoloft, moms drinking merlot, moms serving up cornbread, moms doing art, and moms knitting sweaters.

I've gotten to know women in pursuit, women mentally pausing; mad madges and musing magpies, reluctant bloggers and feminists; Photographers, therapists, massage therapists, psychotherapists, and actors seeing therapists (who let us watch).
I've met teachers who drink (shouldn't they all?), teachers who hang out in the apathy lounge, teacher who travel and teachers who live in Japan.

And then there's what makes it all worthwhile: the spice. Real live lesbians, lesbians on the rocks, sex working sluts, uniting queers, and activist trans. Thank you, one and all.

There are more, of course, to include a man or two (gasp!), but I'm running out of link patience. And running out of time. If you can't tell, this post has been the motherlode of binging and linking. And running out of excuses as to why those three baskets of unfolded laundry are taking over my bedroom.
But before I close, I want to say how much fun I've had, how much I've enjoyed laughing, smirking, giggling, and wincing in solidarity. And how much I appreciate all the comments, encouragement, links, awards, and acknowledgements. Thanks for making my first year the certainty of many more to come.