Monday, June 19, 2006

Where I'm at...

1. The fatigue continues. Fatigue and restlessness. Witness the change (yet again!) in background color. I found the other one tasteful, but depressing. It's only a matter of time before I run out of options and find myself on my knees and beating with my fists against the front door of Typepad or Wordpress and begging for someone to build me a blog that fits my creative (and mercurial) needs. But that means I have to learn some new stuff and....well...does anyone really learn anything well in the summer? How smart to you have to be to work either of these two kinds of blog providers? It's not like I'm fluent in HTML or anything, though it's rather like living in a foreign country and knowing a few crucial phrases (such as "Where is the bathroom?") that get you through the day. I hate Blogger, but I know where the bathroom is, so to speak, and I'm uneasy about change.

2. All the men of Half House are gone. The two oldest boys are working as staffers at Boy Scout camp and Mr. Half and the youngest are now gone for our troop's week of "The Big Adventure", the other name for Worth Ranch. All of them are waking up to this every morning..lucky dogs.

So...things are quiet and I'm trying to get back into the mode where I look out for myself and no one else. It's a skill that has gotten quite rusty in the last 17 years. Living here and slowing my pace and doing what I want to do (something else that hardly ever happens) is sort of like being single and living alone again. Except I have none of the obvious benefits of being single. After all these years of being a SAHM, one of the biggest blows to my ego (and there have been a few) has been the fact that I no longer contribute a significant amount of money to the family coffers. I was the person whose salary literally bought our first house, yet I've never been able to reconcile making such a pittance in the free-lance world...or--like now--making no money at all while trying to tend to junk here at Half House. I can pretend that this is "our money", but I'm never able to let myself forget that I didn't really earn it myself. And I really, really hate it. I know SAHM's contribute in ways that can never be adequately represented by a dollar figure (though Oprah's salary comes to mind), but if society really thought it was all that special and praiseworthy--other than Mother's Day--you'd see a line of men wanting to do it. And some do (See Cynical Dad), though I'd like to see more. Anyway....blah, blah, blah.

I went to the bookstore last night and then hit Chipotle for my crack-infused (Why else do we love it so??) Burrito Bol. While perusing the movie aisle, a man spied my hiking boots (I had only recently returned from dropping everyone off at camp) and struck up a conversation wherein it became eventually obvious (after 10 or so minutes where he kept asking me questions about random stuff) that the guy was...uh...flirting with me. It's so hard to tell these days and I'm way out of practice. I wasn't insulted, but I wasn't interested, either. Mostly, I was just...kind of stunned that any guy (other than some male senior citizen to whom I still appear relatively youthful) would see me in any way other than a mother. And in this case...a sweaty mother.

I ended up buying a book by Ayun Halliday ("Dirty Sugar Cookies") whose link is on my blogroll as well as the movie, "The Nun's Story" with the ever-wonderful Audrey Hepburn and Peter Finch. And when I say Peter Finch, I mean the Peter Finch who was hot and sex-xay before he blew up into an old-but-brilliant toad whose last role in "Network" ("I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore!") encouraged angry people everywhere to throw their television sets out of an open window. If you chance to meet either of my two sisters, they can tell you that I reference the Archangel from this movie all of the time. I'm not going to spoil the plot for you, but Archangel is a metaphor for ALMOST EVERYTHING in my life. That is all.Although "The Nun's Story" --the title alone--would be a good way to describe my life right now. **sigh**

3. Yes I know that it's wrong to end a sentence or phrase in a preposition (See blog title), and it's especially dumb for a former English teacher. Having said that, I will say that I'm in Texas and it's really hot. Nilbo would say..."HAWT". I'm opening my car doors with potholders and the temp inside says 102. My brain is melting.

4. I got up early and went to yoga. Made deposits and both banks and mailed some letters. I've got some art project prototypes to make, but first I'm headed out to run. I try to listen to satellite radio and stay away from the stations which might discuss in any way the Maverick's recent and devastating 1-point loss to the Miami Heat. I still love me some Dirk Nowotzki.

5. So where's everyone else? Are you packing? Moving? On vacation? Are you out by the pool reading a trashy novel and working on your tan? Summer makes me very reflective and today's no exception. It makes me think about all the summer jobs I had as a teenager. What's the best summer job you ever had? I'll start. Six Flag Over Texas. Yes, it was 112 in the park and crowded. People asked stupid questions. Long hours and little pay (hmmm...kinda like my life now). But the community of friends and potential hook-ups with the opposite sex grew exponentially every day. And I learned some practical work skills, believe it or not.
So....tell me about yours. I'll be commenting on your blogs later tonight.


Blogger Lucky Lum said...

This summer we're coming to your house while the boys are gone!!
I'm hoping you have pool. :)

it's TOO hot for me to do anything these days.

12:01 PM  
Blogger mothergoosemouse said...

I had to giggle about the flirting. I can't recognize flirting either.

Best summer job? Working in a bookstore. It was an independently owned B&N type bookstore in the days before B&N, and I was the envy of my friends because the store typically did not hire students. I worked in receiving/returns and bought tons and tons of books. It was a wonderful job. I'd still like to work in a bookstore again someday.

12:05 PM  
Blogger Lisa Ann said...

My worst summer job was standing on the streets of Manhattan handing out flyers for a health spa. I thank g*d every day that I never have to do that again.

The flirting thing? I never recognize when someone is flirting with me either. And I'm still single -- go figure!

Enjoy the peace & quiet.

12:22 PM  
Blogger Brenda said...

We're still home. Summer hasn't hit the Portland, Oregon area.(all of 61 degrees right now... just past noon) Don't plan on it arriving until after the 4th of July. Favorite vacation.... hummmm.... any family reunion! Got one coming up after the 4th. Floating down a river. Family, cousins, water fights, you get the picture. Pictures will be forthcoming after the reunion.

Best summer job? I don't remember working during the summer, until College, then I had to work, but I don't recall a favorite. Must of been hoo-hum jobs.

oooooo..... flirting......that can be fun. ;-)

12:28 PM  
Blogger toyfoto said...

I think I might be going crazy, but that's probably not news. I know we're going to my MIL's house in August for some much anticipated (by me) down time, but for now I'm getting lost in somewhat familiar territory and wishing it weren't so bloody hot out.

12:36 PM  
Blogger Nap Queen said...

Ha! I bought our first (and only) house, too. We're just working our 9-5s, hoping to have enough cash to go to Port Aransas in a couple of months. It is beyond hot here, and it totally blindsided me this year. Since I've been here almost 30 years, I'm not sure how I'm surprised!

1:58 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Best summer job - Hostess at Bennigan's. Can you believe...I actually got fired from that job? Not a stellar moment for my resume, but a fun job for the short summer.

2:26 PM  
Blogger Mignon said...

My problem? I think everyone is flirting with me. What can I say? I'm a Leo.

Best summer job? I've had nothing but heartbreak in the summer job category. Washing the ceilings for an invalid, berry picking, drug store cashier, mall food court clean-up, lawn-care for a lonely divorcee who used to smoke on her steps and talk to me about men (this one, while not fun, was certainly educational...).

Dude, when you're on your own, don't you just yearn to go road trippin? I mean, not trippin trippin, but you know, on a drive to somewhere which requires travel on a road... maybe it's just me?

2:29 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

gcooqI love your blog.......I found it when you commented on Angelina and Brad. I am a SAHM too and I totally relate with the "our money" thing. And I am TOTALLY lost when it comes to posting pictures on my blog...HELP! But my best summer job was working at Murphy Mart, a small department store. Had lots of fun. We usually got to the outer banks in the summer, but this year we are working on our house...BORING! I'd rather be at the beach! Again, love your blog, you're so sarcastic!

4:31 PM  
Blogger mama_tulip said...

Every time I'm here, this blog's a different colour.

4:38 PM  
Blogger Antique Mommy said...

Come over to TypePad. You can find your way around in about 30 minutes. Truly. I just made the move and I know next to nothing about HTML.

Best summer job? I don't know, but the worst was watching triplets, boys. Nearly did me in.

5:37 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

It's so funny about the flirting - cause it happened to me this weekend and I didn't catch on until AFTER it was all over. I am SLOW these days.

I worked at the Rec Dept for five summers. They all rocked.

And it is 95 in New Hampshire. We just can't do this kind of heat.

Not when you are trying to pack and move....

5:51 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

Dave and I have a code when we're out if we notice someone checking one of us out - we just say to each other "I forgot my pager" which is usually followed by a "really? what time is it (meaning if I'm facing 12:00, where is the person who was checking me out?)?"

My best summer job? Doing research for a fabulous prof... set own hours, took off for long weekends whenever I wanted.

7:29 PM  
Blogger Lindsay said...

i kinda like the blue!
but mama tulip is right... your color is always changing! kinda makes it interesting to pay yah a visit!

8:15 PM  
Blogger Nilbo said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8:54 PM  
Blogger Nilbo said...

(Try again, without the crappy link)

A while ago (Feb 2006) I did a post about the Best. Job. Evah. I was placed in charge of breaking stuff. No kidding. For a young man? Short of being paid to go into the bathroom with a Penthouse Magazine, that's as close to perfect as a job gets.

I get the whole idea of not being attuned to the flirting. The receptors go numb, I think, after a while of disuse.

A few years back I was talking to a woman, and she wandered off (I have that effect, I guess). And my female colleague said "She was sooo flirting with you." I was dumfounded.

I got my colleague to give me lessons in flirting, so that a) I could do it, which is fun; and 2) I could recognize it when it's being done to me. I have to say, it's a muscle. Use it or lose it. And really, you don't wanna lose it.

And may I remind you of Winston Churchill's response to being admonished for ending a sentence with a preposition: "That is a form of nonsense up with which I will not put."

That said, I say you combine the flirting and the grammar and end every sentence with a proposition.

8:59 PM  
Blogger Ditsy Chick said...

I am adjusting to the single life as well. I don't know what to do with myself...I don't have to plan down to the minute...I don't have to go to bed and I don't have to get up, I don't have to cook or eat....I am going rucking futs!

9:08 PM  
Blogger Arabella said...

Best summer job was working at a professional theatre. I was sixteen and got to hang with the cool people and feel like a big shot.

I really like the blue. It's very soothing.

5:24 AM  
Blogger DebbieDoesLife said...

Oh, I had a great time as a teen at Six Flags over Texas too!!!

Enjoy the time to yourself. I wish I could have a few days all alone to work on my novel. I keep using the fact that the kids are home to NOT. And, we are leaving for vacation. And, I have client newsletters to do. See how I justify doing nothing??

5:31 AM  
Blogger Mom / Ma'am / Me said...

I am having fatigue and restlessness too. I don't know why.

Have you looked at Blogsome as an alternative to Blogger? It's free, and uses WordPress templates, and you can use it out-of-box or spice it up some. I use TypePad but if I were to go back to a free service it's the one I'd use.

Hmm... my favorite summer job and least favorite were in the same summer. Least favorite was working for the bitchiest people at an ice cream shop/convenience store near my home. When I got another job I walked away in a heartbeat.

My other job (favorite) was working nights for a big corporation, basically feeding the mainframe computer blank tapes. I lost all kinds of weight that summer because I was on a weird schedule, the job was not too demanding, and it was much better than working for the rudest couple alive.

9:18 AM  
Blogger Gina said...

Best job?

Summer day-camp counselor. Trips to the pool, trips to theme parks, playing games all day...

What could be better? And the pay was good, too.

Over here we have given up on the idea of a summer vacation and are just going to try and think of a mini-vacation for our 5th anniversary in November.

10:29 AM  
Blogger Katherine said...

Ack, I just moved here and the 90 degree daily temp has me in a stupor. So overwhelemed, don't know what to do first, but feel like doing nothing. It's the summer fug!

12:58 PM  
Blogger Nancy said...

Best Summer job - 18 years old working in strawberry fields directing people to row to pick, running the cash register, eating the strawberries to the point where I eat them very rarely 28 years later and hanging with the cute "farm" boys. All went to a Marshall Tucker Band concert in the back of a pickup truck. Aah, memories...

1:38 PM  
Blogger Annie, The Evil Queen said...

We just put my in-laws on a plane for home after a week long visit. I've been MIA from my blog all week. We move the end of next week, so I'll likely be MIA again...

Enjoy your peace and quiet at home. And congrats on your flirter. It's always nice to know you've still got it. Even it it's already spoken for.

12:26 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

I have to learn some new stuff

You're the creative person. learning new stuff should be interesting to youl like the table and fireplace.

Instead of procrastinating, just do it.

8:32 AM  

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