Thursday, June 29, 2006

Strawberry Fields Forever

Red alert! Everyone within the sound of my keyboard needs to drop what they are doing immediately, run don't walk to Tony Andrews Farm where there are ripe strawberries in need of picking. An overcast like today is perfect for picking, you don't have to worry about sunburn. Supermarket strawberries are a sad, pathetic, second to their delicious local counterpart. Sure, store bought's okay if you douse them with sugar and bake 'em in a rhubarb pie, but while they are cooking you could be eating the ones you picked today after merely rinsing them off. They are pure sweetness. Your kids don't eat fruit? They'll eat these. They're cheaper in the supermarket? Of course they are, they aren't as good! You don't have time to pick them yourself? They have them for sale at the farm stand. You don't know where the farm is? It's on Old Meeting House Road in East Falmouth. You don't know where that is? Ask someone! Enough questions, leave now!

song: Strawberry Fields Forever • artist: the Beatles

plover tercet

Plovers nesting on the shore,
put off-road drivers in angry uproar.
Get out and walk please, I implore.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Who Let the Dogs Out?

Why little boys are like dogs.
If you tell them it's okay to pee in the backyard, they will go five times or more in an hour. Why don't they just go once and get it over with?

song: who let the dogs out? • artist: Baha Men

Sunday, June 25, 2006

The Candy Man

I see that the ever opportunistic M&M Company is releasing its new M&M's White Chocolate Pirate Pearls to coincide with the release of the upcoming movie: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. I'm sure you don't need me to point it out - but I'm going to anyway - eating White Chocolate Pirate Pearl M&M's will not make you a pirate. Nor will it up your chances of meeting Johnny Depp; who would just think you a sucker for buying them, because that's the kind of cool anti-establishment type of guy his publicists want you to think he is.
Eating a bag of White Chocolate Pirate Pearls will merely fatten you personally, along with the pockets of those smart folks over at M&M's who are no doubt busy right now trying to work out their next product tie in.

song: The Candy Man • artist: Sammy Davis, Jr.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Goody Two Shoes

Yesterday I met Adam Lazarus. Adam is an ant expert. That his name is Adam, as in Adam Ant for all you lovers of bad 80s music, must not go unnoticed though I somehow forgot to point it out during our meeting. Adam has studied ants all over the United States and in South America. Adam has an ant tattooed on his shoulder and a degree in film that he pursued merely as an excuse to spend more time watching ants. His senior thesis? A film about ants of course.
I am envious of people like Adam. People who have known, seemingly from day one, what that one thing is that they were meant to do in life. Most of us are more like me, dabbling in a lot of different things which we're pretty good at but not outstanding. Over the course of a day I'm a caretaker and teacher, a housekeeper, and cook, and a writer-slash-supplement coordinator. I do all of these things adequately, but not spectacularly. Over the course of a few weeks, in the few minutes that pass for my spare time, I may dabble in painting, drawing, guitar playing, gardening, knitting, quilting, and belly dancing. Again, adequately, but not spectacularly.
Driving home from the interview I thought about other people who are like Adam. I thought of our senior class president, Craig, who read the news on our school's morning TV program, Perspectives. Twenty years later, Craig co-anchors the news for a Miami TV station.
I'm only in touch with two high school classmates, which seems odd given that I still live in my hometown but it stands to reason as I never was much of a joiner.
At home I got the run down on the day's events from my parents: who ate what for lunch, who napped, and why my older son has a big red mark on his cheek. Then I checked my e-mail. In the middle of the myriad of Freecycle listings was a message from one of those two classmates passing along the specifics of our 20th high school reunion.
The message directed me to a Yahoo group specifically set up for the class of 86 and the most recent message on the post was from Craig!
And it's odd because although you may reminisce about high school constantly, I don't, much. Though knowing that this reunion is only two months away will probably have me thinking about it more. I may not have one grand passion that's been my life's work, but at least I've got a bunch of interesting facts about ants I can use as conversation starters if I do end up going to the reunion.

song: Goody Two Shoes • artist: Adam Ant

rainy day haiku

Rainy Saturday.
Slugs and mushrooms rule the yard.
We stay in the house.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Say You, Say Me

I've gotten an exciting two comments since the paper's included this blog on its website. It may not seem impressive to you, but that's twice as many as I'd received up till then. There's nothing a mostly-stay-at-home-mom craves more than contact with the outside world. So, thank you, I say, even though one of my two responders was someone I know and the other someone I went to school with! It's all good! And yes, the library is yet another place where, ironically, books are being read but signs which request that we refrain from eating, sadly, go unnoticed. Someday there will be a letter to the editor in the paper from some angry taxpaper stating that they'll never frequent the library again because, (gasp!) they have ants! Go figure.

song: Say You, Say Me • artist: Lionel Richie

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Can't You Read the Sign?

Yesterday I was at the Children's Museum in Mashpee with the kids. The building has several signs posted about not eating or drinking in the museum - but I look around me and everyone is feeding their kids! There was this puppet show and we're all sitting on the floor watching it and this baby who is with his mom and older brother is sitting next to me eating PB&J or maybe it was just PB because I didn't actually see any J. Anyway, the baby crawls over and smears peanut butter all over my dress, which wasn't the worst because it's a print pattern and besides I'm used to being smeared with gross stuff, remember the white shirt incident? But the mom didn't seem to see it or to acknowledge that her kid was smearing me with mushed sandwich and I didn't have any Kleenex on me because I am "unprepared mom." I'm sure all the other mom's had Kleenex in their pockets probably those little travel tissues or better yet, travel diaper wipes. I didn't want to ask the mom if she had a napkin because I didn't want it to look like I was trying to point out that her kid had smeared me - kind of like the Seinfeld Big Salad episode. So I sort of casually wiped it off and wiped it on the rug, which I know was gross, but I didn't feel like I had any other options. I could have gotten up, hoisted up my baby, and gone all the way across the museum to the bathroom but I don't know if my older son would have gotten upset, plus I would have had to maneuver through all the other seated moms and tots and it would have made kind of a scene.
Then at the end of the puppet show when we finally did get up to leave there were all these cracker crumbs in the corner where we were sitting and the snack wielding mom had already cleared out so now it looks like I'm the guilty party. There were even some half eaten crackers on the floor that of course my baby tried to finish off. Not to mention that I don't think PB&J or just PB is a very appropriate snack to sneak into the museum. First, it's messy. Second, for Pete's sake, there are kids who are deathly allergic to PB! But, since I learned my lesson from the M&M women, I didn't say anything. What I could have said was, "Hey! What do you mean bringing PB into the museum! Are you trying to kill someone?" That would have been effective.

Song: Signs • Artist: Five Man Electrical Band

Monday, June 19, 2006

Blowin' in the Wind

My one-year-old's newest trick is blowing his nose. Well, pretending to blow his nose. On napkins, tissue, scraps of paper, diaper wipes. Goes to show you how often he was sick this winter and spring. So the repetoire is: waving bye bye, clapping, and nose blowing. What a clever baby! My older son never got into waving bye bye, too gimmicky I guess.
Forgot one. Turning the lights on and off, he can also do that. Unfortunately it's not a trick that travels well, you can't really show it off in a restaruant or the library.

song: Blowin' in the Wind • artist: Bob Dylan

Saturday, June 17, 2006

NHL couplet

Hockey playoffs in summer?
What could be dumber?

Thursday, June 15, 2006

summer haiku

Summer brings fruit flies.
They drown in my glass of wine.
Someone bring a spoon.

How Can I Tell You?

Here's how it started. I got one of those often-forwarded e-mails from a friend about the pink and white M&Ms and how for every 8-ounce bag you buy, Masterfoods will donate 50¢ to a breast cancer research foundation. Have you seen this e-mail? It's fairly popular. It implored me to "pick up a bag" and to tell "all my family and friends." The kicker was the quote at the bottom from Robert Kennedy about how each of us can work in a small way to change history. Like Bobby Kennedy is referring to M&Ms!
This whole thing was irritating. I'm suppose to eat junk food, and encourage my friends to eat junk food, in order to cure breast cancer? What's Masterfoods going to do to cure the heart disease we are all going to get from downing bags of M&Ms? If I want to give money to support breast cancer research I can just write a check myself, which I did to my cousin who recently completed the Avon Breast Cancer Walk. And if Masterfoods wants to give money to breast cancer research, they should just do it and not sucker consumers into buying candy. Well, my kids must have been out of the house that day and I had nothing else to do because I finally Googled a section of the e-mail and it brought me to a site called "Fact or Fiction" which said that this promotion had expired a while ago.
So, I wrote a message in response to the e-mail, something along the lines of, "not only is it inane to think that eating candy is going to help cure breast cancer, this offer is expired." I put in a link to the Fact or Fiction website. It wasn't worded exactly that way, but it was along those lines. Yes, I could have put it more gently, but I was irritated, remember? These people want consumers to believe that going out and buying a bag of candy is a good thing. And people do believe it. So I hit "reply all." In retrospect I should have just informed my friend who sent the original message and let her decide whether on not to tell the other people on her list but easy access is one of the caveat's of e-mail isn't it?
So, I get an e-mail from my friend saying a benign, "leave it to you to look into this;" then I get e-mails from her friends telling me among other things that: a) I'm a bad person, b) I better hope I never get cancer, and c) it's a wonder anyone tries to do anything good in this world with jerks like me around?
I was going to bring up the fact that I'd recently donated $25 for breast cancer research and I didn't even have to eat 50 bags of M&Ms to do it, and, the only people benefitting from this promotion was the M&M company, not to mention the promotion is expired so the whole thing's a moot point, but I let it rest.
But I ask you, though maybe I shouldn't, was I wrong?

song: How Can I Tell You? • artist: Cat Stevens

Who's Crying Now?

It says in the paper, our paper, that Shane Holt cried when he found out he wouldn't be able to attend his high school graduation. "I'm not afraid to admit it. I cried." Good for you Shane! Lots of people would have been afraid to admit it. Kids learn quickly. Observations from my son include: papa says only girls have pocketbooks/only girls can have their rooms painted pink/girls wear light colors, boys wear dark colors/only girls wear skirts/girls don't drive trucks. Okay, I was able to convince him that girls do drive trucks and I tried to spin the others to be inclusive even to the point of telling a three-year-old about Scottish men and kilts, but it won't take long before he bunps a knee and someone tells him not to cry because "only girls cry." And then when that happens, at least I can tell him that Shane Holt cries, and he's not afraid to admit it.

song: Who's Crying Now? • artist: Journey