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Archive for May, 2005

Super Size Me

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-31-2005

We watched that show tonight, SuperSize Me .

Hmmmm. I found the statistics interesting, the mind f*cks tempting : catch them while they are young.

I found the medical aspects to be trite, perhaps untrue : they imply that after a measly 30 days, one shall crumple up, hand clasped to one’s beast, heart failure. Or hand clasped to one’s side : liver failure.

And Mickey D’s does offer diet coke : I know this to be true. Our children can drink soda, as long as it is sensa sugar.

Eh, run that by me once again: the thirty day death ?

Such is not the nature of these ailments.

But a show like this makes me feel very, very old fashioned. A show like this makes me feel that more men must kick in with the cooking.

A documentary like this shows me that a family is very privileged if Mummy Dearest ( or even Daddy) can stand in front of a stove and ( attempt to ) to cook a tempting and wholesome meal.

I like Big Macs fine.

But who the f*ck would want to eat three meals a day at Mickey D’s ?

I once tried the Atkin’s Diet : Lord, I was dying for the crisp of fruit and vegetables.

And- I must ask- our kids won’t eat cold cereal. Nope. They want toast and juice or yogurt for breakfast.

What, really, is so good about cold cereal ?

I do believe that this is a cultural thing.

Last Man Standing

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-30-2005

When I picked the children up from school this afternoon, I knew within seconds that The Boy had had a bad day. I must be getting used to his oblique ways, for today I discovered what had happened in less than twenty questions.

My usual sermon about how- when playing either softball or volleyball during my oh- so- rose- colored school days- nobody ever wanted me on their team, cut no ice today, soothed no sores. I could have dragged out the me- sitting- in – the – toilet- of the – gym- so – no- one- would see- that- I had- no- one- to -each- lunch- with scenario, but that sad, sad picture- I have discovered- is simply mawky self- pity, not a seminal iota in it.

It was only when I pointed out what a pity it was that Jesse went to another school, that Niels was a year younger, that the wilt left The Boys’s edges. Yes, it is indeed a great pity, I told The Boy, that your real friends aren’t in your class with you…

Today, in The Boy’s class, the children had to join up in pairs and make a drawing of something that they both like.

There are an uneven number of children in The Boy’s class.

Things like this make me want to bang my sword against the shield protecting my lone, amazonian breast, to ululate in rage.

But- of course- I do no such thing. Instead, I search for the words that force Satan to his knees, the facts that might erase that fleeting sense of the abyss of total alone- ness.

I hope.

The Combat Zone

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-28-2005

The children’s corner in the kitchen . Warning : BIG pictures, so you can enjoy the mess vicariously.

The Combat Zone is on your right as you enter the kitchen. In the first photo, you can see the back of the new couch.

And then the front.

We like it.

Now, if I could just convince The Father that we really, really need some small furniture : end tables, things like that.

Paisley Shawls

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-27-2005

Our new couch came today. It is just a little two seater, nothing fancy, something that the kids can sit on when they watch TV in the kitchen : having two, big comfy chairs does not work when one has three children. Couches have a more… plebeian aura… a more Marxist attitude. That is, when one compares them to a large, comfy chair meant for one person.

But my, the number of times today that The Father and I sat back, sipping a cool drink ( hot as hell here today) and looked over at our new little couch. We like it so very much.

Because of the price, I suppose that it is fake leather. I’m sure The Father would say- officially- that it is skye. He would also know how to spell it, but I have the point of the story : skye is fake leather. I don’t care if it’s fake. Real or fake, this couch is in the combat zone of the house. While I would like to believe otherwise, I know- deep in my heart- that our lifestyle ( read : three kids, the deaf cat) will break records in trashing this couch, skye or leather, makes no difference).

As I admired the glossy surface of the purchase, I thought that a paisley shawl- or two- might help to protect the couch from the senile cat’s claws, scratches. But in the end, what do I know about paisley shawls ? ( In fact, don’t paisley shawls remind one of Quentin Bell and his group ?).

I started at Google, moved on to Ebay, and guess where I found the item that my heart desired ?

In India.

And on Monday, The Father is going to send on my request for two paisley shawls to his good friend and business associate. Maha. I’m sure Mrs. Maha will find me lovely shawls- she selects the odd bits of jewelry that The Father has delighted me with, she sends me spices for curries.

In return, I send her large boxes of Leonidas chocolates.

Tit for tat, after all.

But how pleased I am to find that the perfect paisley shawl to drape over a couch is from that part of the world. You see, I’m a mighty cheap woman, I would never pay that stated resale price and I…I can get it beyond wholesale !

The Father is in textiles, in India and Asia, where luscious fabrics abound, and I can – and will- take advantage of that.

Har ! Paisley shawls !

Something to wrap about my shoulders on a cold and dank winter’s evening, as I sit in my little room of my own, watching my Constance Spry thread it’s way up that massive tree in our yard..

And yes, I know where that phrase comes from. After all, I know who Quentin Bell is, don’t I ?

Turn Green

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-26-2005

I have two jugs of real, live Vermont maple syrup sitting atop my fridge.

Top that.

Many thanks to Will and Carol, who hide behind their camera, but whom I like very much indeed.

And I am very glad that they are going back to Vermont.

In fact, maybe I should go to Vermont.

Isn’t Vermont just one of those places : Vermont is a state of mind.

I think that I belong there.

Or not. What do I know.

He Sees

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-26-2005

When The Father came home from work today, we exchanged the usual pleasantries. We do that. It is rote. In the mornings, we all give the smooch and wish each other a nice day, in the evenings, we ask how that day went. I would be torn to say why : perhaps the Waltons, perhaps because of the saving grace that a few days before Mummy died, I went through the pleasantries as well: I do not have words left unsaid hanging over my head.

Out of the blue, he said, I like your little garden.

This is so out of character it is simply amazing, jaw dropping. When The Father and I were courting, I asked him what color his mother’s eyes were….uh…. He just doesn’t see, or notice a lot of things. At times, this is nice. He never notices my weight. I’m sure that if you pushed him into a corner, placed a sliver of cheese under his nose, he might be able to say what color my eyes are.

Good guy, just not big on visuals.

And our garden is nothing : three weeks ago, it was the place where the dogs sh*t and destroyed the rubble which the construction crew left behind. I dug a flower bed and lined it with these bricks which I know, in time, will get all green and moldy looking. It is crooked. Very. Although I tried very, very hard to get them to be…not crooked.

But we have flowers ! We have little vines creeping up twine, climbing roses sprouting, strawberries blushing, a tomato looking, well stressed- to be frank.

You know, when you have nothing in your yard except two, fine climbing roses and two batches of chives, a trip to a garden center is heavy going. Why, you can fill up a car- twice over- and all of those plants – they seemed so many in the car- now seem scattered and paltry once planted.

Last trip to the garden store, The Father raised his eyebrows very high indeed when I opened my wallet to pay the bill ( 84 euros, if you must know).

And so, when he says that he likes it, I know that he too enjoys the plants, the flowers, the gezelligheid that they can bring. For that is what flowers and growing things give one, a comfy, homey feeling.

We don’t have a pretty garden. It is only three or so weeks old. And very tiny, we live in a city surrounded by dikes ( Steph- I’ll send the name to you…soon….you really are on my list of things to do!).

But after many years, we are enjoying it once again.

Note : have to mow that lawn on Sunday… we have dirt to die for…. simply sumptuous.

Day 4

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-26-2005

Today was Day 4 of trying to design/ make the new site. I had predicted that on this day, I would throw my hands up in the air and go back to tables.

I spent a lot of time over the last days trying to figure out how to do what I wanted to do. Why, yesterday alone, I worked so long and so hard that I totally f*cked up everything I had done during the previous days.

At lunch today, two attempts to recreate what I had, for that brief moment, failed. I began to wonder why I wasn’t using tables : truth be told, no reason for fancy- schmancy on this page ( note the hands are slowly rising from the desk).

And then at 4pm , I had the Aha! moment, things clicked back together, and I almost have recreated that first attempt.

And that is where I have been, instead of replying to comments, chewing the fat, being sociable or being just down- right polite.

I have given myself until Monday to figure out the next step, so I may be scarce until then as well. I find that I am having a bit of a hard time adding a third dimension to CSS, although I understand layers just fine. The Z- index thing is only just starting to make sense.

Curiosity Calls..

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-25-2005

Quentin Bell. Ever heard of him ?

Just curious.

He is very, very obscure and I tend to think that few recall him, even less that do are of the… male genre.

Recalling- even vaguely- who Quentin Bell was strikes me as being a very chick thing.

So : ever had that name cross your path ?

A Question-

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-25-2005

Are boys as slobby as girls ?

I just wonder, for The Boy is rather tidy ( compared to you- know- who and her little sister).

I’m just wondering if it is a girl thing, which would really be rather ironic- in general -should a girl find herself in a rather traditional girl / boy relationship when she is all grown up..

Psst !

Posted by Mummy Dearest on May-25-2005

Everyone knows- well, anyone who really thinks about it, for a moment- that The Father and I flung filthy lucre up into the air and bought The Girl another world. A world in which she is popular, a world in which her eyes sparkle and her mouth curves up into unfamiliar territory: wow, cheeks.

I don’t know if buying the horse ( well, the pony) will- in the end- be the best move that we ever made, or the worst. At the menage, now that she has a horse ( and having very few peers who do so as well) she has uber status among the horsey girls. Having a horse is like being a pope : can I have the pleasure of mucking out the dear boy’s stall ?

But then, the class structure at her school is warped as well : no one can be popular unless they, too, live in the utterly dull village next door to us.

Both at school and at the manege, nothing that really should matter does.

The girl across the street has just started riding- at The Girl’s place. The Girl gave them the lowdown on the ins and outs of the manege, about the waiting list, the costs.

Today, the doorbell rang – it was our neighbor, and her wannabe- horsey- girl. Did The Girl want a ride to the manege ? ( The wannabe- horsey- girl’s eyes are glittering with awe, wow, The Girl).

The Girl said, sure. When they said that they were going to stop first at a store somewhere which carried second hand Horsey- girl- shit, The Girl’s eyes sparkled. Sure indeed.

So- once again- I can see how spoiled we are : they were looking for second hand riding pants ( The Girl lied through her teeth : she is saving hers for The Baby), we have the horse. In the end, once you buy the horse, the monthly costs are exactly 75 euro more than one pays for weekly lessons. Should The Baby learn to ride, having a horse is actually the cheaper option.

But I can see how far away I am from second- hand riding pants ( as a note : in 6 years of riding, The Girl has gone through 3 of the fancy pants. They last a good, long time).

And a part of me says that the cost of the gas spent…

So, here I sit. The Baby wants to ride. Bennie is not a suitable mount for her. The Girl- in essence- works every day at the manege, helping with ponies and – in particular- the handicapped children who want to ride.

Is The Girl capable of making that trade off ? My work= small pony for my sister ?

I think that she is.