Saturday, May 30, 2009

Pregnancy Is A Symphony, And That Farting Is The Percussion Section


In all my glory. Taken spur-of-the-moment with my iPhone, which explains the quality.
And the fact that it didn't even occur to us to close the cabinet door.
The photo is therefore both of me, 36 weeks pregnant, and my livingroom cabinets.



Please, allow me this disclaimer:

I hate potty humor and have no taste for it. I detest movies that focus on poop/fart jokes for laughs (sorry, but yes; I hated Dumb & Dumber) and for the first many years of my life, wouldn't even think of uttering poop words aloud, ever. EVER. Slowly, sadly, over the last several years, as if by design, Ben, Emily and Ish have together worn me down. Three against one is a tough battle.

These days I still don't think pooping or farting is funny in any way, but at least I can acknowledge that these words -- and yes, perhaps even these functions -- exist, and recognize that a lot of people do find the whole business of, well, "business" amusing.

Thus, when I began blogging, I could not have foreseen the day I would use the word "farting" in the title of a blog post. For the record, I do not consider this growth on my part.


I find that the best, most moving songs in the world are those that begin with a simple melody and single instrument, and build and build until the whole last verse and chorus are bursting with interest and instrumentation. The the best example of this that immediately springs to mind is the song, "One Day More" from Les Miserables. Each of the first verses are of varying melodies, sung by their primary characters. Then they all somehow come together and the different voices and melodies fit and right there is why people who love Broadway love Broadway. Totally goose-bump worthy. Even the 11,000th time you've listened to it.

(The Frank Sinatra duet of "Mac the Knife" with Jimmy Buffet also came to mind. The song doesn't even have percussion to begin with, but by the rousing end there's an entire big band orchestra wailing and two singers who, let's face it, hold their own.)

(There are probably a million other great examples.)

But in case you didn't know where I was going with this, THIS is what pregnancy has been like. At least, for me.

See, in the beginning, all these strange things happened to my body. I knew to expect some of them, while others came as a complete shock.

I looked up for this self-photo, on the idea that it's boring to look at pictures of me
looking into the camera (see below).
Except I couldn't see what I looked like.
I don't think I ever make this face.


The first trimester was pretty okay. I got bone tired by 9 p.m. every night. I only felt nausea if I went too long without eating. I had no cravings and no difference of appetite. My face broke out a little more. My boobs were sore. Otherwise, I had very mild instances of any of the HA, YOU'RE PREGNANT issues: gas, heartburn, aches, bloating, swelling, weird dreams, crazy hormonal fluctuations (crying at the sad mop not withstanding).

The second trimester was miserable, but mostly because it started with a month-long cold that I refused to take any over the counter medication for. So fatigue continued to be my biggest complaint. Oh, my skin decided to go from "oilier than usual" to "the most sensitive, dry skin on the planet." I also stopped being able to remember things. But given that Ish and I got married, bought a house, and moved (and I left my job) all during this trimester, I think it went quite well.

The beginning of the third trimester was even better. Aside from the strange butt-muscle pain and general aches and pains, pregnancy was just not so bad.

It still isn't so bad.

But about three weeks ago, it happened.



All the fun little melodies and harmonies of my body's pregnancy decided to play together for the big finale! The Grand Conductor has decided it's time to step it up! We're heading into the big finish, apparently, and it's time for great flourishes! and crescendos! and 76 trombones! and fat ladies singing!


Ish asked if he could take a picture of my belly from below.
He got down on the floor.
I am not sure if this is a funny picture or just really scary.


In the last three weeks alone, it's all hit. And in case you were hoping I'd spare you what all "all" I mean, sorry. Just skip on over this next bit.

I haven't seemed to gain any weight, but I quite clearly have a melon-sized baby inside, alternately bouncing off my diaphram (so that I can't breathe so well) and banging into my bladder (so that I have to pee, urgently, even when I don't). My nose gets stuffed with fluids just for fun. I am hungry all the time but am always also full. I sort of have to battle with myself to eat anything other than ice cream, which I have never otherwise craved in my life and also which -- fun for Ish! -- I don't digest too well. Cue the timpani! I am not especially swollen (my ankles, for example, are still intact), but noticed that I had to buy flip flops in a half-size larger than usual and I can't wear my rings anymore. My skin was doing okay, but now my legs are incredibly dry and my face breaks into the occasional hive(?). The butt pain hasn't gone away, and is now joined with the fun sensation of my hips gradually detaching themselves from my thighs. The boobs have gotten re-sore. Dreams are getting weirder and weirder. I am having a harder time trying to find a comfortable position to sleep in. Standing, walking, climbing stairs, etc. has become a bit of a challenge now that such activities require my stomach muscles to hold up a bowling ball while so doing.

Glorious, I tell you!

But still, I will say that it really hasn't been anywhere near as hard as I feared. I absolutely consider myself lucky -- to experience pregnancy at all, and to have it be as smooth as it's been. Even now, with this crazy cacophonic climax.


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

If You Can Get Through My Ranting, I Really Need Your Suggestions

*UPDATED* (See below)

I think we've done it.

Between gifts, a few online excursions, and a giant trip to Babies 'R' Us AND Target over the weekend, I think Ish and I have stocked up on the baby basics.

But right. I think. What do I actually know?

Oh, well, I know a few things. I know that the idea of baby "safety" makes everyone completely crazy, and the reports and statistics and number of things that COULD result in DEATH OR SERIOUS INJURY is staggering.

And I'm not buying into it.

Not that I'm planning to hand my infant razor blades, but I seem to be gravitating toward the "it'll probably be fine" end of the parenting spectrum. Because you know? I sorta remember the 70s and early 80s, and cannot imagine that a SINGLE item of baby equipment I was given would be allowed under current regulations. And yet we managed to survive somehow.

I don't want to make light of the standards we have now. I'm glad we have them. I like being informed. I'm glad we've discovered the dangers of BPAs and have a better handle on what causes SIDS.

But I also think that if I went the way of today's super-mom, gobbling up every single piece of consumer reporting available and taking it at face value, I would never leave the house again. It seems so illogical and even somewhat arbitrary.

Example:

There is a slight chance your baby might suffocate from a crib bumper. For this reason, bibles like Baby Bargains (awesome book, btw) does not (cannot?) recommend them. However, when they say "slight" do you know how "slight"? I looked into it. Approximately 1 in 3 million, and that's not accounting for other factors that might also be at play in that one child's crib/home.

Do you know what the chances are that you might be in an auto accident with your child in the car? I don't want to scare you (or myself), but it's a LOT higher than 1 in 3 million.

My point is this: Thousands of people will forgo the crib bumper while thinking nothing of packing up their baby into the car.

And I TOTALLY get how that seems reasonable. But it also kind of isn't. And so there's a point where, again, I put the books down and step away from the internet and breathe and try to figure out what I really need to worry about versus what I don't.

No easy feat.

But so here I am. And despite reading lists and books and sorting through all kinds of "recommendations" I still do not feel like we have everything we need.

I feel like there's still that elusive thing, that one we-could-not-have-lived-without-this item we don't know about, that we must have.

So you know? I thought I'd ask you. You seem to know stuff.

My specific question is: What is your list of things that you had (or wish you'd had) when you returned home from the hospital? What did you wish you'd thought of?


Trying not to go overboard, the basics we have:
- A crib
- A bassinet (for our room, where she'll sleep for the first few months)
- A changing table/dresser for her room upstairs
- A Pack 'n' Play with a changing station for downstairs
- Newborn and size 1 diapers
- Infant car seat and stroller frame for it to pop into
- A bouncer
- Clothes/blankets/swaddlers/sleep sacks

- UPDATED: Sorry, forgot to mention: We did also get a Diaper Champ (recommended over the Genie). We got this because we've already actually had one for over a year. Why? you ask? Because it was a LIFESAVER when we had four cats in a single apartment, and no garbage chute nearby. We kept the Diaper Champ next to the litterboxes, and it totally rocked. It's otherwise nearly impossible to stay on top of the cat-poop smell, and this did wonders. It takes regular kitchen garbage bags, and is so handy for cat litter! Figured if it could handle the stench of four cats' best efforts, it can handle a baby's.

And not to be all ULTRA-controversial or anything, but on the subject of breastfeeding...well, I plan to. At least I will try to. We'll see how it goes. I think if I can, I will. For a while. I do not believe that breastfeeding is the answer to all of life's problems, however, or that you are less of a mother if you do not breastfeed.

**********Sidenote***********

For what it's worth: I know a few moms who were physically unable to breastfeed and who were demeaned, vilified, and made to feel horribly guilty as a result. WTF? These women are some of the best moms I've ever met. Pressure to breastfeed is overwhelming to me, and it's simply my temperament to be skeptical when "everyone" seems to be "shoulding."

Who knows? Maybe I'll LOVE it. But if I don't or can't, I believe that's okay, too.

[I loved this article in The Atlantic about how the "Breast Is Best" philosophy is at least partly refutable. Of course the article has flaws, but at least it pokes holes in many of the arguments people seem to take as law. That breastfed babies are healthier than formula-fed babies isn't incontrovertible, for example.]

UPDATED: Please read the Atlantic article before telling me not to heed it. The point -- of the article and my linking it -- is simply that there is another side to the YOU MUST BREASTFEED OR ELSE position. Most current studies support the theory that breast is best, but the studies aren't without flaws. Am I willing to believe the entire American Pediatric Association? Of course! Just...not blindly. It's not like doctors haven't been wrong before (remember the decade or so during which all moms were instructed to position babies on their stomachs to sleep?), or that new studies don't constantly change our best thinking. I'm just trying to be sensible, and have a hard time believing there is ever only one "right" way.

**********End Sidenote***********

But so, okay. Assuming I will be nursing for "a while," I don't have a good sense of what equipment I NEED to have at home right away, and what stuff I can get eventually: bottles? How many? Pumps? What kinds? Even if I'm not working? How does one store breastmilk most efficiently, anyhow? Should I have formula on hand anyway?

Lastly, what are your thoughts on diaper bags? I'm assuming I need one, but what should I carry with me? What do I REALLY need in the beginning? Is this something else I can wait on, or something I should have prepped?

I promise to take your suggestions VERY VERY seriously, so please share as much as you're willing.

Thanks!!!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

KIDNEY STONES!

Did you notice that the new Indian spokesman for Fiber One cereal is the same guy who played the busboy who hit on Samantha in that episode of Sex and the City?

We should probably be friends if you did.

Because these are the kinds of things I notice, and it doesn't do me any good. I kind of think it's a skill, sort of, but with no actual tangible benefit or use. So conversations around our home go something like:

Me, for seemingly no reason: KIDNEY STONES!

Ish, startled: Huh?

Me, nodding at the television: Kidney STONES!

Ish, looking from the tv to me and back again: Huh? Oh! Good call.

This was my way of telling Ish that the principal on Glee (because of COURSE we were watching) was the guy who played the doctor who diagnosed Joey with kidney stones on Friends.

Ish gets points for catching on so quickly.

I think I inherited this "skill" from my mother. I can't help but wonder if this is the sort of thing I will be passing to my daughter, or how old she'll have to be before I know. I sort of sickly daydream of her toddling over to me to announce that the lady on Sesame Street is the lady from mommy's show. Because that's how it starts.

Wait, so did I really write about midget clown porn? I did, huh? Well, let me just say that I don't have any idea what the name of the movie is/was, but I'll try and get it from the ex. Also, to answer your burningest question, GOOD LORD NO. The rhyming little person did not get naked or have sex with anyone in the movie. I don't think even I could blog about that.

This post seems not to have a point. Crap.

To be fair, I started TWO different blog posts about Dooce that I gave up. They seemed weirdly Dooce-focused, and I don't need to seem any crazier than I am. But the point I was trying to get at is maybe worth making. And that is: Wow. For a woman who's in such good shape and so thin, her baby and baby bump seem to be causing her a LOT of distress. Whereas I started off like, twice her size, and seem to be functioning a lot easier. I don't exactly look forward to running up and down the stairs several times a day, but I do it. And still cook and clean and go grocery shopping and drive to the city (well, sit in the car as Ish drives) once a week.

But yeah. I gave up those blog posts because basically the subtext was "Neener, neener. You may be more prolific and rich and skilled and WAY thinner than I will ever be, but my pregnancy seems to be causing me less distress than you! HA! Take that, famous blogger!"

And that's not very healthy.

So what have we learned? I have a good eye for remembering actors in B- and C-level roles, perhaps as a genetic predisposition. I am 100% unjustifiably feeling superior to Dooce. I watched Glee. And at least my top-level post isn't about midget clown porn.

As a final final note, I was perfectly happy with the American Idol results and don't think Adam's losing is a failing on America's part. I understand the sadness and anger some of you may be feeling, but honestly. Aren't the majority of AI voters 9-year-old girls? Also, remember that time that guy Ruben beat Clay? Right then.

I cannot WAIT for So You Think You Can Dance.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Post About Porn And Not My Sister

Here's the thing I wrote before my sister joined me for a long weekend.

In the spirit of short, funny(?) posts, I'm going to skip the preamble. I started this post one way, and after a full hour, maybe more, I was bored of myself and that is a REALLY bad sign since the post is about porn.

Again, I blame The Bloggess, who delved into writing about clown-porn and that reminded me of a movie I saw once. So I did what you're supposed to do -- I left a comment over there. But after I (just now) re-read my comment, I realized I sounded kind of manic, about porn no less, and so I thought I'd share a little more of my experience here for your benefit. I don't know that I'll end up sounding any less crazy here, but at least you're not all who IS that crazy commenter lady, instead you're probably just rolling with the usual crazy, la la la.

So okay. I once went out with a guy who

Wait, wait.

I know this isn't the point, but do you have any idea how many different ways I could finish that sentence? Between the number of guys I've "gone out with" and my natural-thus-unintentional tendency toward male diversification, that sentence has almost endless possibilities. Off the very top of my head:

I once went out with a guy who*...

...was afraid of sharing food.
...liked to try to convince people he was from the future.
...was a recovering paraplegic.
...showed up in sweatpants for our first date.
...didn't tell me he was married.
...did tell me he was married.
...lied about having a girlfriend (which I discovered when she found my name and number and decided to call me to discuss the situation).
...tried to impress me by taking me to his fancy apartment, despite that it was the apartment he lived in with his parents.
...was obsessed with The Lion King.
...was a Republican.

But right. Porn.

I once went out with a guy who collected porn from the 70s and 80s. Naturally, I was curious about this -- I'd never seen any of the "classics" such as Deep Throat or Debbie Does Dallas, and figured watching such titles could only further my pop-cultural well-roundedness. Or something.

In a nutshell, here's what I thought: Oh, hey. People didn't used to shave ANYTHING.

Anyway. Somehow (gin), we ended up watching a few other movies from this bygone era together, and that's how I came to watch the porn with the midget clown.

(I know I should not use the word "midget" and that I should say "little person" except I don't think ANYONE in ANY demographic wants to be associated with what I saw in this movie. So please do not think I'm being un-PC when in fact, I'm actually being hyper-sensitive. Also, I'm writing about clown porn and if your main issue with this post is the fact that I'm using the word "midget" I don't even know what to say.)

It was a bad movie from the start. Right away, you could tell the movie was making a full-blown attempt at plot -- some guy getting angry at his wife/girlfriend and going for a drive in his truck -- and next thing you know the story has taken a turn and you're suddenly watching a very hairy man getting lost in a magical mansion where there's weird sex stuff happening in every room. (The sex acts themselves, mind you, were not particularly weird. Just the whole magical mansion plot.)

But so you have this guy, and he runs around a mansion and finds himself in a strange room with women wanting to have sex with him. And he's all, Okay, I guess I will, and then immediately after has a moral/ethical/directional crisis and remembers he doesn't know where he is or how to get out.

And that is when the midget clown appears.

Once upon a time, there was a group of writers, and they decided to "craft" a script. For this porno flick. And they got to the part where the man having pretend-reluctant sex in the mansion doesn't know what to do next...so they decided the only thing that made sense was to have a tiny, gruff clown appear. To help him.

Of course!

Except.

EXCEPT.

Except not only that! No!

The midget clown spoke IN VERSE.

And THAT is when, as a couple, you have to pause the DVD and stare at each other because you can't believe what is happening on the television screen.

Did...? Is that...? Did he...? And with the...? IS HE RHYMING?

And also you realize you have to know how the movie ends.

Because yes. Every time the man journeyed from room to room, or felt particularly lost and helpless (such as when he went from the room with the two cowgirls to the room with the amazon woman in a cheetah-print camisole who seemed to be protecting "treasure" -- understandably confusing for any man), the midget clown would appear and say something rhyme-y. So as to give the man a "clue" for how to leave the mansion.

When all was said and done, the man got back to his truck and on the road and I think he decided to return to his angry girlfriend/wife. He may have been influenced by the poetic midget clown, it's hard to say.

Also, there is no point to this entry, except I guess maybe to say that -- as far as I know -- they just don't make midget clown porn movies like they used to.






*Notice (hi, Em!) that I write "a guy WHO" and not "a guy THAT." Because even posts about hairy midget clown porn can use proper grammar.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

I've Decided To Forgo Writing About Porn In Order To Write About My Sister

Isn't that so nice of me?

(DAMN DAMN DAMN! I originally tried to post this yesterday and it didn't take. Then I REPOSTED this morning and it wasn't the full, edited post but something I'd rewritten and blogger ate. I found it again, as below!)

Even though she doesn't even regularly read my blog, she just checks in once in a while and reads archives. That's why it took her three weeks to yell at me a couple years ago, when, on her son's birthday, instead of writing about my nephew I wrote a post called "Burrito Head" likening the aluminum foil they use to wrap burritos to the kinds they use at hair salons to do highlights. Oops.

So I didn't want to repeat my mistake and have her read my blog in a month and get mad that instead of writing about her visit to California, I wrote about porn. And not just regular porn, but midget clown porn. And then years from now when we're wrinkled and gray and talking to our grandchildren, she'd turn to me and say, "OH! And why don't you tell them about that time I stopped talking to you because you wrote about CLOWN PORNOGRAPHY instead of your FAMILY" and I'd have to defend myself against that accusation and what can you even say? To grandchildren?

My sister is coming to visit me!

As you know, I have two younger sisters, Healy and Sam. Both of them are terrified of flying -- debilitatingly so. Which, right -- has been a problem when trying to get them to visit me across the country.

Now, to be fair, I always knew this would be an issue when I moved to California. But back when I first left, I figured we'd work around it. So far that's meant I fly back East when I can.

I never expected to live in California so long. But here it is, seven years and seven months later, and I haven't moved back. And I'm married and have a house (with a guest room!) and am having a child and suddenly the circumstances are way different. I'm not quite the rootless, freewheeling single gal I was when I left.

You know what I mean.

So they're working on their nerves (via prescription drugs and booze and whatever else they need) and finally, my sisters are visiting me in California. Samantha is coming later this summer, Healy arrives today!

I can't really express how excited I am to see her out here. To have her meet the people who've shaped the last several years of my life, see where I lived, visit a few wineries and a LOT of SF bars.

Yep, I spent three-and-a-half years in that building. Yes, the hideously blue one. Next to the pizza place. Yep, with Encore Karaoke three doors down. Oh, look! It's our favorite tranny hooker!...

I wish I could add some poetics or special poignancy to this post, but I think that would require opening an emotional can of worms I'm not ready (or willing) to. My sisters and I have always been so close, and losing our parents so early only strengthened our bond. We still make each other crazy in a "I'm hanging up on you now" kind of way, but our core is strong. I recognize that I'm extremely lucky for this, and if I think about just how lucky I am, I'll start openly weeping.

Perhaps it's best just to post embarrassing pictures of them instead. (Coming soon!)

Anyway.

Just to bring this post back to anything of pseudo-relevance to your life, places I'll be taking my sister this weekend:

- Polk Street in general, where I lived the longest. Favorite bars ever ever? Lush Lounge and Vertigo.

- Dinner at Foreign Cinema. Folks who've been reading this blog forEVER know that I once tripped and fell flat on my face at a corporate party in front of an entire dining room. This took place at the Foreign Cinema. Now you know.

- If we can fit it in, we'll grab crepes at Ti Couz in the Mission. Nothing compares. It's charming, authentic, and unique.

- Zeitgeist. I wouldn't take my sister (and her poor, unsuspecting friend, who gets extra credit for agreeing to come to SF last-minute so she could accompany a terrified Healy on the plane) to just ANY motorcycle/hard rock/dive/beer garden. Only the best.

- Martuni's. This piano bar holds a special place in my heart because it was the first bar I ever went to in San Francisco. (Thanks, El_G!) The first couple times I went I was too scared to sing for anyone -- I hadn't performed in years. But one night I was pretty well loaded, and it was between Christmas and New Year's and I was feeling celebratory, and I finally went for it. By the end of the night, the piano player had me standing on my chair, acting out the Innkeeper's Wife part from Les Miz (specifically the part in Master Of The House). When the song (and complete Les Miz medley) was over, people equally as drunk as I asked if I had been on Broadway. It was a ridiculous question, but the best one I've ever been asked.

These days, my a cappella group will occassionally venture to the bar on otherwise quiet evenings to sing our hearts out.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

A Humorous Work-Related, Hive-Memory

I've written maybe 5 entries specifically about work, which is kind of mind-boggling when I think about how many hours I've actually spent at work. Because so many.

So, for no reason other than my current "I should blog more, maybe with shorter posts" jag (and by "jag" I mean this is post #2) (woo), I just thought I'd share this one moment I had at work that still makes me laugh. But also maybe I'm just weird and it's not funny to anyone else. In which case, I apologize and will think twice before using the term "jag" again.

Right, then.

A long time ago, I worked for a boutique consulting firm. Every project was assigned a Senior Consultant and a Project Coordinator. In some cases, a project would be big enough to warrant more than one consultant, even though there'd still be only one Project Coordinator.

(Isn't this so fascinating?)

Once I'd been at the company a few months, I was assigned to my first real client. I, as competent rookie, was put on a ginormous project (a series of projects, really) involving a multi-million dollar Chinese holding company. The project directly involved the company CEO -- a billionaire himself, I learned, yes, billionaire, with a "b" -- and his senior strategic staff. Big, scary stuff.

(Even as I write this, a hive has formed on my chin. I'm not even kidding. That's what happens when I feel acute stress. And you can bet that I was a hivey wreck throughout that first project. If I can conjure memory-hives ten years later from the safety of my livingroom in Napa, you can imagine what kind of shape I was in by the end of that project.)

So okay. You have this major project and me as a first-time lone Project Coordinator. That sets the stage.

Next, add that our project team included a non-senior-level consultant. In fact, Marie was the only non-senior-level consultant on any project, because she was the only non-senior-level consultant in the company. They'd promoted her from the position of Project Coordinator for the first time in the company's history.

So sure, if you want to look on the one hand, the two of us were kind of hot-shots.

On the other hand, OH HEY. Kind of neither of us knows what the hell we're doing!

The project progressed okay for the most part, but the week before the first major client meeting, it was not smooth sailing. The weekend before the huge Monday meeting, Marie and I had to come into the office to get a lot more stuff done.

And this is what made me laugh, and love Marie, and think, Ah-ha! So THAT is what professionalism looks like when everything is falling apart!

I got into the office on Saturday morning and Marie was already there. She was at her desk in her office. She was focused, calm, and typing away at her computer.

Her mouse, however, was on the floor. Of the hallway. Outside her office door.

I approached her with trepidation.

"Is um? Hi? Is everything okay?" I asked.

"Yep, just working on my stuff," she replied.

"Is ah...your mouse--?"

"It was annoying me," she said, in a perfectly measured tone of voice, and she offered no further explanation.

Still, I found it gratifying. She wass clearly as stressed out as I was, she just expressed it by throwing her mouse into the hallway and continuing with her day.

And I think there's a lesson in there for all of us.

Do I know what that lesson is? No. But I DO know that coming upon your completely cool, calm, and collected colleague who's hurtled a piece of office equipment out of her office and into the hallway is damned funny, lesson or no.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Now Might Be When I Start Posting Every Day

Hey, you never know, right?

I mean, The Bloggess is so completely crazy and awesome, and yet she manages to get her crazy awesomeness across in really short entries. (Well, short except for the post about the how she "accidentally" doused herself in giraffe urine so she could get felt up by the hot male giraffe.) (I might be editorializing.) (What? Who's jealous? Just because she's all hilarious AND openly drunk doesn't mean I'm jealous enough to go making up stories about her sexual zoo peccadilloes.) (Well, not EXACTLY.) And that works for her. (Not the zoo sex. The short entries thing.)

Whatever. This is all just to point out that the iPhone auto-corrector has always annoyed the crap out of me, until recently, when it made me laugh out loud TWICE. I don't know what it is about potatoes.

The other day, I texted Ish about how he didn't have to pick up any take-out on his way home from work. Because I decided that I would make dinner due to my sudden, inexplicable craving for mashed potatoes. Except I don't know what letters I actually used for "potatoes" because the next thing I knew, I was telling Ish I really had a craving for "mashed orators."

In fact, on second reading -- God bless him for not rushing home or calling the cops on his insane pregnant wife -- I didn't send him anywhere near a coherent message. I intended to convey that I was going to go to the store and pick up groceries and fix dinner and thus he didn't need to pick anything up. But what I actually sent him was the following message, in its entirety, which not even a code breaker could have possibly deciphered:

You may be in luck. I just hot craving for mashed orators.

"Hot" was supposed to be "got." And there's no way Ish could have realized that "orators" meant "potatoes." Further still, why on earth would a hot craving for mashed orators mean he's "in luck." In luck how? From what?

Pregnancy + iPhone = hahahahahaha.

And then last night, I was using my phone to IM (which is really stupid because my thumbing skills are sad as it is, even before auto-correct gets into the act), and somehow we got on the topic of potatoes. Again. And I was suggesting that no, we didn't have to run to the grocery store because we had plenty of potato salad left over, we could just have that with the pork roast. Except that's not how it came out, either.

The entire line was:

Piptato salad!

And then I stared at my phone and laughed so hard I nearly peed my pants. (This is not an exaggeration. Pregnancy does odd things to a woman's bladder.)

Had iPhone corrected me? No, obviously it couldn't have, since last I checked "piptato" is not a word. But then did *I* type "piptato"? And if I did, why DIDN'T auto-correct do its job?

PIPTATO!

So okay, piptato may not make YOU laugh, but one of the songs we performed last Saturday was Midnight Train to Georgia and we do indeed have three singers who do their best Pips impression and I can't help it. The imagery of Piptato Salad makes me giggle.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Maybe It's Not Even Funny Anymore

So our show was on Saturday night and it went very well. Probably there will be some horrifying video out, but I won't post it here (or even look at it) because in my head and my bathroom mirrors I swear am an adorable-looking pregnant woman, but then photos and -- really? has it come to this? -- videos seem to miss the glowy-pregnant nuances of me, and instead portray me as a pasty, doughy, sort-of-red-haired-with-sort-of-dark-blond-roots, double-chinned round person, who might be pregnant or who might just be full of doughnuts. (Although Ha ha! Joke's on them! I'm BOTH!)

The point is, I'm actually really very smart. (I know, you're like, "Huh? How is THAT the point? What has that got to do with doughnuts?" but I'm all, "See? I know what you're thinking." That's how smart I am.)

Once, not long ago, I used to manage all this data in my head. I could think of more than one thing at a time, and remember pretty much everything I was supposed to remember. I could do things like think, "Hey, I should blog about that," and then the next time I sat down at the computer? I would, actually, blog about that.

True story: I never use bookmarks because I can always remember what page I've ended on.

So please, allow me this. Allow me to momentarily reminisce about mental aptitude.

When I was in grade school, I was a good student. I was in those gifted classes and advanced groups and even asked to skip a grade. (I didn't, though; my parents ultimately left the decision up to my 11-year-old self, and I turned down the opportunity because I didn't want that kind of interruption in my "social life." And that right there should tell you everything you'd ever want to know about how I was raised and how I've always prioritized my life.)

(Also, it should be noted that any advantage I'd had in middle school I completely ignored by high school. Sure, if we adjusted grades to account for amount of time studying/paying attention in class, I would have been Valedictorian. Unfortunately, high school is not graded on an effort-to-output ratio, and so I was a solid B student.)

I regained some energy and motivation and got my shit together by my second year of non-Ivy, non-private college, though. And did lots of things and took hard classes and honors-y things and interned and did I ever tell you I was Phi Beta Kappa? Well, I was. And in all honesty, I find this fact less impressive than that time I drew images of the giant hole I got in the butt of my pantyhose at a conference. Because the former is fancy and all, but the latter required a creativity (and an embracing of breezy elegance) that I really had to work hard to tap into.

So, right. I have always tripped and spilled and yes, been a constant mess of breezy elegance, but at least I had some control of my mental faculties.

But now that I'm older and pregnant -- and, by the way? NOT EVEN A LITTLE BIT DRUNK -- I don't know what has happened. The light switched off. I've been hit by a Stupid Dart.

I wrote about "pregnancy brain" and I guess it could be that I'm just particularly susceptible, but this is ridiculous. I feel like I have butter pecan ice cream for brains (mmm, ice cream!), and that at any moment I will just become a slobbering, drooling mass.

Which brings me back to the concert.

My a cappella group had a concert last Saturday night. This meant I had to remember a lot of things at once, and never -- never, in my many years of performing -- has it been so taxing. I've never had to work SO HARD to remember my parts and how to conduct and how to, you know, count and how to SMILE and STAND and NOT FALL OVER in my life.

The good news is that I didn't fall apart. I did most of the things I set out to do. For instance, only once or twice did I just NOT SING because I forgot that I was supposed to.

(Note: that's always an alarming feeling. Looking across the stage at the other person on your part, and watching her sing, and thinking, "Oh, that's so great that she's singing that part right when she's supposed to!" and smiling because everyone sounds so good, and then having your brain catch up with itself and realize, "HEY, DOOFUS. ISN'T THAT YOUR PART? AREN'T YOU ALSO SUPPOSED TO BE SINGING?")

The whole thing was just so overwhelming.

Right before the first set, I went to the bathroom to pee (because these days I am doing that more than I ever thought possible) and to catch my breath. I wanted desperately to wade through my ice-cream-for-brains to ensure I'd remembered everything. Is the stage set? Are we on time? Is everyone here? Do I know where my water is? Did I remember to change my shoes?

Except those weren't really the thoughts I was thinking. Ice-cream brains makes me think more mushily, like, "Is the stage -- hey, the cold air in this bathroom feels really nice. I like the weather in San Francisco a lot. I always did. I feel kind of...thirsty. Do I know where my water--oh! Water! I should wash my hands extra long because of the Swine Flu! Is there a soap dispenser? How old IS this bathroom, anyway? It's kind of a historic building, isn't it? Wait, how long have I been in here?"

And then, when I made it back to the group and we were about to head on stage, I discovered (because it was pointed out to me) that I had a HUGE splotch of water on the front of my shirt. Obviously this happened when I was in the bathroom leaning over the sink thinking about Swine Flu and historic soap dispensers while having no idea how much larger my belly is now than usual. Because usually (see: Coaster post, below) stuff collects and gets on my boobs, not my belly.

My belly has NEVER been bigger than my chest, so stuff -- food, crumbs, water, wine, coasters -- never reaches it. I can't possibly be expected to stop things from getting in my cleavage AND on my stomach, can I? No. No, I can't. ISN'T PREGNANCY GLORIOUS?

Anyway. What can you do about a water splotch on your shirt 3 seconds before you're supposed to go on stage? Nothing.

And whatever. The splotch dried and the group was great and the first set went great and I didn't even fall off the stage even though I came close at least three times.

But you know what? Guess.

No really. Guess.

Look at that! You're right! I DID go to the bathroom to pee during our quick intermission, and I DID do the same thing AGAIN.

Of course my head was even more fuzzy and buzzy and mushy half-way through the show, and thus, when I came out of the bathroom to head into our second set, the NEW splotch was TWICE the size of the one I had to go on stage the first time.

And now that I've told you all of this, I have zero idea what the real post was supposed to be. I'm looking at the title and trying to remember. Ummm....I did think of a very funny, quick story over the weekend that was similar to the coaster-boob post, and was very excited to write about it today. But I didn't write it down and have no idea what I was thinking of.

OH! Baby names!! THAT'S where this post started. "It's not funny anymore" was about how we still do not have any baby names selected and our list isn't getting shorter. Hmm. How did that turn into my writing about school and water splotches? Fascinating.

Oh, well. Pretend that this paragraph is where I wittily tie everything together and it makes sense. Butter pecan!

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Reminder: A Cappella Concert Tonight

Hi All,

Just a reminder that our all-female a cappella group, The Loose Interpretations, is performing a concert tonight in SF. I make zero promises as to our professionalism or musicality, or that we'll remember ALL the words and/or notes, but! The theatre has a bring-your-own-booze policy and there's no admission fee. Plus free wine.

Time: 7 p.m. SHARP (there's a show before and after us, so we need to be prompt)

Location: San Francisco Comedy College Theatre, 414 Mason (@Geary), 5th Floor

Strategy: Get people to drink as much as possible. The more the audience drinks, the more we sound like angels.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

In the meantime, Ish is putting together the crib. I'm going to go take pictures of him now.