Wednesday, December 31, 2003

BIG CITY YEAR IN REVIEW:

Best movie I've seen this year: 24 Hour Party People

Sweetest movie I’ve seen this year: Secretary

Hottest movie I’ve seen this year: Unfaithful

Worst movie I've seen this year: Phone Booth. Hands down. Someone please explain to me the appeal of Colin Firth. Because I don't get it. And the thought of him playing Vermeer in a "serious" movie...well...

Best book I read this year (fiction): The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen. Ondaatje's Anil's Ghost is a very close second.

Best book I read this year (non fiction): Seabiscuit by Laura Hellenbrand. Honorable mention to On the Rez by Ian Frazier.

Best CDs I bought/was given this year: Wilco, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot; Radiohead, Hail to the Thief; Randy Newman, Songbook Volume I; Beck, Sea Change.

TV Shows worth setting the VCR for: The OC, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, 24 (it still sucks, I still love it). It's been a leaner TV-watching year with the loss of HBO, the increased work load, the pregnancy and the demands of the baby. I don't watch much other than the above.

Proudest Moment: Definitely picking myself up off of my feet and starting my own business. I'm still very, very proud.

That's it for the list. Still not sure what we're doing to celebrate the new year -- I hope you all have a very safe holiday. Watch out for the amateurs on the highway.

See you in 2004!


Friday, December 26, 2003

Xmas Recap

Considering the rocky start on the morning of the 24th, amazingly enough, Christmas eve/day went really, really well.

Wednesday morning found me shuffling about the house in absolute misery and panic. Some kind of horrible depression took over me, I felt completely defeated in the face of the holiday, tired, worn out, overwhelmed. I was convinced I was going to screw the whole thing up and my kids would forever remember this as The Christmas Mom Wigged Out. Brian went ahead to the ranch and I started gathering things together to go as well. I had to pick the big boys up at their dad's house on the way out there, but the baby was with me.

Got the car loaded up, scooped up the baby and a couple of bags and headed out the door...where I promptly lost my footing and fell forward onto the concrete. Some kind of superhero parenting instinct kicked in and I managed to get my hand underneath the baby's head and keep it from slamming into the concrete. He was crying but mostly from the shock. I picked us up and dusted us off, went on over to the car where I promptly fell again, in much the same way, this time letting the baby pretty much fall into the grass. It was one of those slow motion falls where you can see it all happening and you are powerless to stop it. This fall really got me good, and I sat there for a minute, holding the baby, him crying, me crying, not sure if I could stand up, not a neighbor in sight. Finally pulled myself up off the ground and got the baby into the car seat, and myself into the driver's seat. I was in excruciating pain at this point, having pulled every groin muscle there is. Called the ex and told him I was on my way.

Pulling out of the development and onto the main road we drove a few blocks and then I saw, right in front of me, a dead tabby cat in the road. The markings looked very much like my cat Buda, and with a sickening feeling I pulled the car around and went back to check. Got out and crossed the road to have a look, and it was Buda, lying there. She must have just been hit. Her body was still warm. I was of course completely beside myself in tears. Some nice ladies pulled over and tried to help me out. I scooped her up in a dish towel and they lent me a plastic bag to put underneath her. I drove back home to get a box or something so I could carry her out to the ranch and buried her. Called Brian in tears on the cell phone. Pulled into the driveway, stepped out of the car and saw Buda's littermate coming up the drive. Neither she nor the dog had seemed particularly interested in this dead cat I was holding, which I thought was odd. Went inside to get a plastic bag and coming back out and around the car I looked down and saw...

Buda.

Very much alive.

I looked at the dead cat in my arms, looked at Buda down there in the driveway, and felt like the world's biggest idiot.

So there I was, with a dead cat. I felt kind of sheepish taking her back to the side of the road (what must those nice ladies be thinking about me now?) but I didn't know what else to do with her. Left the poor cat there to be found, I hope, by her rightful owner, and drove up to pick up the boys.

At this point, it should be said, that the pain was so bad I could hardly see straight. The boys and I headed straight out for the ranch. We needed to stop for food and wrapping paper so I managed to get us to a grocery store where we proceeded to v-e-r-y s-l-o-w-l-y shop for some basics to get us through the next couple of days. I was in complete agony. Somehow I managed to get us all through that ordeal, back to the car, stop for some fast food, and out to the ranch. Where I collapsed.

Brian took the boys out "tree hunting" and came back with a lovely cedar tree. It's nothing like a typical Chrismas tree, it's all light and air instead of dense and sturdy. And it looked beautiful with our lights and ornaments on it. I mostly sat and watched but couldn't bear to be so left out so I got up for a bit and did some tree trimming. Trimming the tree on Christmas Eve may be one of my favorite activities. Brian begged some food off of his aunt and we had a pretty meager meal of chicken and beans, but it was better than nothing. We hung up the stockings on the wood stove, left out some chocolate chip cookies and spiked egg nog for Santa (we know what Santa likes), and the kids went promptly to bed, no doubt with visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads.

Maybe that's enough for one entry. I had less pain on Christmas day, and even less today. Everyone is still sick, I am still borderline depressed, but the boys had a fantastic Christmas, which was what really mattered most to me. They were very pleased with their presents, and didn't seem to feel remotely deprived, which was my greatest fear. And it was lovely to spend our first full Christmas out at the ranch, the first of many.

Happy Holidays to all of you.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

My Brain Loves This Song

Years ago, when living in Wisconsin, I remember a comic strip -- I think it was in The Onion. It might have been a Zippy cartoon, maybe Matt Groenig, I'm just not sure. Anyway, the main character was going insane because his brain loved a particular song which he absolutely loathed. "My brain loves this song" became a sort of trademark phrase between me and my friends whenever a particularly loathsome piece of music would get stuck in our heads.

I think it's going on 5 days now of that motherfucking Blind Melon song which has reappeared in that Pepsi ad. My brain seriously loves that song. I may require a frontal lobotomy soon.

Monday, December 22, 2003

Code Orange

Don't you just love the whole "go on about your daily lives, don't worry about sitting in that football stadium/flying into LAX/visiting the tree in Rockefeller Center but BE VIGILANT." ???

Oh, OK. I'll keep an eye out for strange men with suitcases. Thanks for the tip, Tom Ridge.

My life pretty much feels like Code Orange right now. Keep it together, keep moving, try not to let the shit hit the fan. Try not to have a nervous breakdown. I have a laundry list of complaints and stressors and anxiety, none of which seem to be abating to any degree. If anything, it all seems to be getting worse and I feel positively paralyzed in the face of it.

Here's the thing: I'm 32 weeks pregnant with twins and dear readers, let me tell you, it is no picnic. I don't have the physical ability or stamina to do much other than feed myself and try to feed my kids. I feel piled on with business worries and moving worries and money worries and (God help me) Christmas worries and sick children worries not to mention my own borderline bronchitis/pneumonia/cough from hell which just won't go away. So some days I find myself sinking into a deep depression, the likes of which I haven't felt in over 6 years. I cry at the drop of a hat. I'm sleep deprived and sex deprived (doctor's orders) and rest deprived and financially deprived.

Other days I think, you know, it's really not so bad. I have a multitude of blessings. Of course I know this in my heart. But the self pity takes over pretty damn fast.

I really, really need some help in the form of a person who can come and just take over for me. And there is no help coming. The only available person out there is, of course, my mother. And quite honestly today I was thinking of calling her up. Things are THAT BAD. But I don't know.

I need a break, a Christmas miracle, SOMETHING, because Code Red is just around the corner.

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Homeless Blog

being_homeless

What, exactly, have I been complaining about again?

Please forgive me.