Thursday, February 26, 2009


Man am I ever in a rut.

Can't seem to pull myself out of it.

Can't even blame Bergen perma-gloam as the days grow ever longer, and the sun remembers rumors of whispers of warmth it once shared during its brighter hours.

Mister cut down seven trees around our property last weekend. It's helped with the brightness, but it still depresses me to see all those felled trunks and limbs strewn about the yard. I do not approve of the indiscriminate cutting down of trees. I don't care how much bloody evening sun they're stealing. They were here first!

Things keep dying around me. The trees. The cat. The i-pod.

My i-pod, people. My i-pod. The big one. The investment piece. The mother-fucking-ship. Dead. 80 gigs DOA.

I have no way to process this loss other than the sort of short, incoherent stuttering working its way through this post.


Boy has taken up the fine art of the random rhyme--like the Great Vizzini only smaller, and with slightly less sense. Recent favorites: Hurry, hurry. Your pants are furry. And: If you have a vagina, you're going to China.

A bright spot in an otherwise bleak, existential storm of self-loathing.

I'm kidding. Mostly. It's not really as bad as all that. I'm still just not much in a writing mood. And this business of the i-pod crashing is truly disturbing. I'm indulging in a wee moment of melodrama. This too shall pass....

As a further excuse for not posting much lately--I've recently taken up knitting. More the fool, I. It's completly absorbed 80% of my free time these past three or four weeks. When I was in Scotland I got all cocky, thinking I knew something about knitting, seeing as I'd been doing it for more then ten days at that point. Plus, I had way mastered the art of the knit and the purl (that's all you really need, right?) So I found myself some pretty, moderately pricey, multi-colored wool, and a lacey shawl pattern. And there I thought I was good to go.

Any guesses on how it's gone with the shawl so far? First off Jilly--you totally LIED to me! I need twice as much yarn as you told me....Twice as much! First blow--the shawl has become yet another scarf. Probably a blessing in disguise, actually. Still, I really liked the look of that shawl......I like the look of the scarf in the picture, as well. Good thing I have the picture to admire, because mine isn't going to look anything at all like it. Whatever! My son is fat full 'a rhymes, yo. If she's sitting. She must be knitting. So I'm still a good person.

Maybe being 36 will make me happy, and once again full of fun, insightful anecdotes to share!

Check in next week to find out. But, don't hold your breath, 'kay?

P.S. I'm thinking my next few posts should be nothing but LOST LOST LOST all the time LOST, because GOD DAMN but how much do I love that show! The next time you see me it will be 1954 and I won't know who you are. We'll all speak Latin, and take turns braiding each other's hair into fetching frulein do's. Your nose will start bleeding, but I'll tell you not to worry because I secretly love you, and my i-pod is still working.....

Friday, February 20, 2009

I've Got Nothing To Say--Allow Me To Throw Some Pictures At You Instead

From a recent skiing trip:
Pictures are all self-explanatory, but you are required to spend two or three extra seconds admiring the one of EM and her dad.  I made her, you know--even if she does sometimes act like she likes him best.

From Aberdeen:
In general I liked the architecture in and around Aberdeen--kind of monochrome and blah granite, but all ornate and Victorian, so pretty enough to look at. I loved these brightly colored, mosaic tiled designs that could be seen in many of the entry ways. I don't know if they're unique to Aberdeen (didn't think to ask) but they were rather wonderful, and I found myself wanting one--immediately.
You see, sometimes I do allow myself to be photographed.  Now you know why it's not very often.  I do not feel I'm aging gracefully.  Soon the folds of skin over my eyes will sag and droop so low I'll have to pierce my eyebrows and roll my eyelids up like little roller blinds just to be able to see.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Alternative Lifestyles

Katy Perry's annoying girl kissing song is on the radio....again....

The kids are in the back seat.  EM is singing, "I kissed a girl, and I liked iiiiiit...."

She turns to Boy and says, "You have to sing this song, Boy."


"Because you're a boy, and it's about kissing girls, " and she sings again, tauntingly, "I kissed a girl and I liked iiiiit..."

Boy responds--tauntingly, "But it's a girl singing it."

EM stops short, "Oh.  Wait.....?"

Missy perks up, "I like girls!" and startes singing--ecstatically, "I kissed a girl and I liked iiiiit!"

I'm off to Aberdeen for the weekend.  I wish it were warmer in Aberdeen than it is in Bergen.  It's not.  Jilly tells me to suck it, and come anyway.  The song is in my head now, so I might have to kiss her when I get there....

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Husbands Can Be Good

Thank you all so much for your very kind condolences yesterday.

He most certainly was NOT 'just a cat', which is why I had to keep telling myself that just to get through what had to be done.

I sent Mister a text from the parking lot at the clinic. "Puss is gone" it said simply.  He called me within seconds of receiving it, and was so sweet and so understanding it busted me up all over again.  He was so sorry I had to be the one to do it.  He had said he would, but he's too busy, too pre-occupied to have gotten to it before the weekend.  I didn't want the kids to see what shape Puss might have been in by Friday even if he had been strong enough to make it that long.  Plus--he was sick, yo.  He was my cat.  He needed me to take care of him this one last time.  So I did.

And awful it was.

Mister asked me if I wanted him to come home.  If you knew this man, and the way he works, you'd appreciate what a hugely magnanimous and (in his way) gentle gesture that was.  I said no.  There was nothing he could do for me.  I would be fine.  Then he made me promise not to stay home.  "Go for a run.  Go for a walk.  Go get coffee.  Just don't go home.  PROMISE ME."  So I promised.

I called my neighbor--a fellow American who lives half a kilometer away--told her what I'd just done, and asked if I could bum a cup or two of tea off her.  "Oh God.  Give me 15 minutes, " she said, "Then come."  I spent just over an hour listening to her tell me about all the various cats she's had over the years, and the horrid ways most of them have died.  Somehow, I still can't work out exactly how, this was therapeutic for me.

A few hours later I was picking up Little Miss to take her to ballet.  Boy was in the car too, as he has football right after Missy's ballet.  I was standing next to the car, semi-patiently waiting for her to get settled so I could fasten her seatbelt, when what to my wondering eyes should appear, but Mister stepping off a bus and running towards me. 

"So how are you?  Are you okay?  Do you want me to do the running around with the kids this afternoon?  Do you want me to come with you?  What do you need?"

He'd left work two hours early to play chauffeur to the kids because he knew I'd be sad about my cat dying.  Again, if you knew this man...

He ended up coming with me just to keep me company.  Just as we were pulling into the ballet studio Mister says to me, "So there's this litter of kittens due in March..." and he hands me three pages of pictures he's taken off the breeder's website.  In fact, he's already called the breeder, told her about the situation (she sends her deepest condolences, by the way), and not officially yet reserved one of the kittens for me, but pre-reserved one of them....If I'd like that....Would I like that?

To continue to say..."Geez, if you only knew this guy....This is so unlike him,"  would be to risk giving you the wrong impression of who he really is.  Because it's not that he's heartless, and gruff, and generally uncaring about my feelings.  That's not why he surprised me so much yesterday.  It's just that he's so busy.  And, usually, when he's at work, he's AT WORK, and nothing else much penetrates that concentration bubble he retreats into.  But these pictures, and that phone call, and showing up early to hand it all to me...he basically took the day off to put this band-aid on my broken heart.  And just took my breath away.  That's all.

So this is the mother:  her name is White Pearl, and this will be her second litter.

And this is the father: his ridiculous name is Johnny Depp, and he looks so much like my Puss in his prime that I have a bit of a hard time looking at that photo.
I asked for a female.  I think I might be interested in a litter myself--for the kids, for me,  for the money....I also asked, please not solid blue this time.  Something mottled, something spotty, something different.

If all goes well, the kittens should be ready for delivery the first week of June.  Right before we're supposed to leave for Utah for the summer--which is not ideal--but I think we're going to do it anyway.  The kids are already debating names.  I'm wondering how I'm ever going to get used to calling a cat anything other than Pussy Lucy....

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

It's just a cat.  It's just a cat.  It's just a cat.  It's just a cat. 

Just a smelly, grass-puking, mangy god damn cat.

This has been my mantra all morning.  Just a cat.  Just a cat.  Not a kid.  Just a cat.

And it was working for me.  It kept my voice steady when I called the vet clinic to ask, you I need to make an appointment to kill my dying cat, or can I just drop by?  And it kept right on working for me as I picked up said sad, emaciated cat off the bathroom floor to gently slip him into his travel cage--the same travel cage we used to carry him home for the first time 13 years ago.  Just a cat.  Just a cat.  Not a kid.  Just a cat.

It sort of stopped working for me a bit on the drive over.  The 'not a kid' part led to some pretty gruesome (and, in retrospect, extirely predictable) tangental mindfuckery which my fragile nerves had some trouble processing.

But I choked it back and was in control again as I walked into the clinic.  Just a cat.  Just a cat.  Asshole husband didn't do the dishes last night.  And just a cat.

The receptionist was a huge help.  Cold.  Businesslike.  You're here for termination?  Would you like him examined first?  Will he be going to the common crematorium, or would you like an private urn to take home with you?

Yes.  Sniff.  No.  Ew.  What was that first one?  And are you always such a bitch?

I was kind of getting pissed at her.  I mean, wasn't anyone going to try and stop me from doing this terrible thing?  Shouldn't an exam be...I don't know...obligatory?  And God!  She didn't even ask me why I was doing this!  How I had arrived at this horrible decision!  Didn't she want to know that he hadn't eaten since Sunday night?  Wasn't anyone going to ask me about how he'd fallen down the stairs Monday morning, and never quite got up?

I wasn't crying when she walked back towards the exam rooms, shouting, "I have a termination here.  Where should I put it?"

I couldn't look at the cage.  Couldn't sit next to it.  I kept my mind on the bitch receptionist, and started pacing.

It's just a cat.  Just a cat.  What a bitch.  Just a cat.

When the receptionist came back out.  She walked over to me, stopped me mid-pace, put an arm around my shoulder, gave me the saddest, most understanding look, and said softly, "I'm going to take him now.  You've given him a long life.  This is absolutely the right thing to do."  Then that nice receptionist lady had the great pleasure of watching me come completely unglued.

It's been a shitty day.  A shitty week really.  It should have been done last Friday, but it's taken me this long to be willing to face up to it. 

God what will I tell the kids?