Wow, where did Monday and Tuesday go? Where did the *week* go?! People on my forums and e-lists are issuing MIA alerts for me. I barely got anything asked or answered at Yahoo! Answers, either. But now I have some time to talk, read others' blogs, check out forums, etc. Of course, I'm also going to be anxiously awaiting the New Jersey marriage decision!
I have to say, I can't believe I talked about Sara Evans' divorce without mentioning her little preview of her soon-to-be-ex-husband's future, "Cheatin'"! I simply had to rectify that situation with a link to YouTube. It came out over a year ago; you'd think he would have gotten the idea then, especially considering her gleeful grin in the video. Oh, and Zanne, I'm happy to have given you someone new to fantasize about. I think she'll be needing some comforting, don't you?
My mom came to NYC for a business meeting. She wanted to see me. She got L'Ailee too, on Thursday night, because we're a package deal. That's something she still has a bit of trouble accepting, which was obvious by the look on her face when we did anything remotely coupley, like hold hands. But it was mostly pleasant. We went to dinner on Thursday night, and talked about mostly neutral subjects: TV, movies, what she liked about NYC so far, racing (she likes Denny Hamlin and misses Rusty Wallace) and newspaper puzzles (she's also amazed at L'Ailee's sudoku prowess.)
Pop culture can really forge connections. For too many years, L'Ailee was either "the little bald bitch" or "the little Russian bitch" to my mom, depending on how she wore her hair. Then, shortly before our wedding, they found out they both loved the various Law and Orders. Jerry Orbach, from the original L&O, had recently passed. They talked about missing him as Lenny Briscoe, and L'Ailee mentioned feeling stupid because she wanted to cry even though she'd never met him personally. Mom admitted that she did cry, and told her it was okay to mourn the fact that he'd never be able to entertain her again. She held L'Ailee and let her cry for about a minute. When they were done, they both looked mightily embarrassed, but it was obvious that a barrier had fallen down. I liked the shows a little bit better after that.
L'Ailee's tastes in television are in between mine and my mother's. She enjoys procedurals and mysteries like my mom, but like me, she'll also watch carefully selected cartoons and comedies, as well as weird or cool stuff on the various Discovery Channels. (I'm the one who coos over baby zebras on Animal Planet and can't resist a few minutes of quality Discovery Health programming like "The Boy Born Without a Face" and "The 200-Pound Tumor".) Mom doesn't understand the appeal of "SpongeBob Squarepants," "My Name is Earl," or "Ugly Betty"; L'Ailee tried to help me explain. After dinner, we walked around for a bit, which was nice. It was nice to see things I was beginning to take for granted through her eyes.
The thing I'm proudest of is that I did not let her turn me back into a 13-year-old! It's happened before. I go to my therapist on Thursday afternoons, so I actually asked her for some advice I could use that evening. I used it, and it helped a lot. I owe her big. I'll have to remember it if we get together on Christmas.
On Saturday, Yemaya and I surfed. We got no comments on her race or our gender this time. If we did, they were at least not where we could hear them, which is just fine by us. The air was brisk, and the waves moved a little more nicely than they do in summer. It was very cleansing. Yemaya and I think you just need a nature break every now and then if you live in NYC. All the green markets and parks and zoos and such are good, but they never let you forget where you are. Sometimes you have to go to Jersey, or even farther.
Sunday, of course, was Race Day. L'Ailee's made friends with a newly arrived Japanese woman in one of her classes. She's also teaching her daughter gymnastics. She invited the two of them over to watch the race. Boy, was that an education in American culture for them, that's all I can say! I'm not sure if they'll be back or not, but they were very interested. The daughter was especially interested--I think she enjoyed the good-looking men in snug fireproof suits. (Not that I can blame her.) L'Ailee sometimes acts like she was destined to be Asian; she loves all sorts of food and other cultural artifacts from China, India, Vietnam, and, especially, Japan. Her new friends thought the shrimp-flavored crisps, Pocky, and wasabi peanuts were meant for them, and the woman started telling L'Ailee she didn't need to get those things for her! But L'Ailee loves shrimp crisps and Pocky, and I love wasabi peanuts, and our regular guests vouched for that.
We lost it during Speed Channel's pre-race show. It was cloudy, cool, and icky at Martinsville. A reporter asked Brian Vickers if he thought the weather would affect the race. He replied that he didn't think the weather would be a factor, "unless it rains." It took us all a second to digest, and then several of us just fell out laughing.
We decided that we don't like David Ragan. Ken Schrader did, too. This rookie was three laps down; Ken Schrader, a veteran, was in the top ten. Schrader hasn't done that well in forever. Then Ragan took him out, and Schrader ended up with all the metal on the back bumper getting torn O-F-F off his car! As we explained to our Japanese guests, these aren't the cars you get on the lot. The metal is perhaps a few microns thicker than aluminum foil, to make the cars light. Schrader's car, of course, was out. As the announcer said, Schrader "looked hot." He grabbed a huge pipe that had fallen out of the back of his car and walked across the lot, brandishing it as if he was going to either bash in Ragan's skull or throw it at his car. "He's gonna throw it, he's gonna throw it," the more experienced of us murmured. He did, but into Ragan's (unoccupied) pit box. When Schrader was cool enough to talk, he admitted that he thought about his points, and how he really didn't need to get sanctioned on Ragan's account. We thought that was smart. He and his crew chief, Fatback McSwain, are really old-school. We think they could have administered old-school asswhuppings to both Ragan and his crew chief.
Jimmie Johnson won it. At least puhpaul oughta be happy. I enjoyed watching Denny Hamlin's attempt to take the win--it failed, but it was at least exciting. Tony Stewart finished fourth, and Kevin Harvick is now second in the championship points standings, which isn't bad.
And people think it's all rednecks going fast and turning left!
You can now get paint to match your sports teams and drivers' colors at Home Depot.
Cows and birds may have regional accents.
It's time for Christmas traditions to start already. One of my least favorite is Christian Nationalists trying to "Save Christmas". I particularly enjoy the "I Love CHRISTmas" buttons. It's not just a celebration of your deity's birthday or a time to get and give presents; it's a middle finger to all American non-Christians!
But there is some real perspective out there. Reason magazine points out where the real dangers to marriage are, and how "marriage protection" amendments hurt straights, here
The awesomely awesome specialcases has uploaded another preview of Sinead O'Connor's upcoming CD, Theology. Wow, is this powerful stuff. This one is based on the Book of Job. It may not look good on paper (or pixels), but trust me on this one.