Wednesday, August 27, 2008

keep calm and carry on

My friend Geoffrey, in his capacity as my boss, keeps taking my hand and earnestly repeating "Not more than the usual amount of fretting," until I say it back to him. Not more than the usual amount of fretting. What I failed to take into account is the equation for "how much is the usual amount of fretting" in regard to what's actually going on in my life right now.

Work, although it is much more under control on my front since I started working the early shift, is in all other respects a runaway train: we're undergoing a renovation that hasn't even started yet and is already a week behind schedule. During this period we need to be hiring and training roughly fifty seasonal staff. The Christmas product will be arriving any moment. We're down two managers, although I did learn today that we've hired a general manager who will get to start in early October, lucky her. (I did put out a general call this morning over unpacking to ask could we please, please, not put on our judgypants for the first few weeks while she adjusts to working with new people in a new company at the worst possible time of year to start a retail management position--pretty please?--and after that, I don't care, judge away! Go nuts! But if I have to listen to my beloved and generally quite awesome co-workers display their worst, pettiest behavior in the middle of the rest of this I will go batshit crazy and start screaming, fret-levels be damned.)

Then there's the ongoing conversation with the dear friend who's offered to be my sperm donor. The conversation isn't a problem, it's finding the time to sit down and have it. Granted, negotiating the use of someone's semen is awkward, even if you thought you'd got all the possible awkward out of the way in university by doing hideously insensitive things to one another and then processing for months. (Writing songs about your feelings optional.) It's not like it's a prerequisite, but there is probably no better preparation for this kind of awkward than having shared a decade of overearnest and yes, strangely literal friendship peppered with conversation about the big things: values, ideas, girls. But the hideous stress-taffy that is emailing about something important makes me feel bad, and feel bad about adding stress to my friend's busy life, and in the meantime I'm full of crazy anxiety-born thoughts about my age, and my reproductive health, and my dubious qualifications for parenthood. It feels like the stress is sitting on my brain and squishing it out my ears, such that my response to a most recent email in which he says that we could possibly talk on "the non-zoo day" caused this moment of panic:

wait, there's a zoo day now? what about the zoo? am I going to the zoo? is this a metaphorical thing, like "things are a zoo around here?" how can I possibly not know if zoo-related activites are going on? why did I buy a damn daytimer anyway, if not to help me out of this kind of confusion? is there any way to ask about this without sounding like a total crazy person?

Uh, no.

In an apparent non-sequitir, we just got back from visiting Jennifer in Ottawa. Jen is one of those friends that overwrought maniacs like me cherish due to her ability to calm me down by treating me like a lovable doofus and giving me advice in short, easily understood sentences*. In this case, I am ordering for myself the very poster that hangs in Jen's living room

although I may order it in a seafoam colour. More calming still.

* I cherish Jennifer for other reasons as well, as she knows, but it just looked a little cold sitting there. I thought I'd clarify.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sixth annual Elvis Wake

The tragedy of this is that I have no pictures of the food. THE FOOD. Nor, for some unexplained reason, will Blogger allow me to add more photos just at the moment--and there are more. But oh, an Elvissey time was had by all.

This year's theme? Blue Hawai'i. The madcap hijinks got so bad that at one point I had to cover my eyes and ears and make little squeaky noises to drown out the dialogue--and that was before Elvis reformed the bratty teenage girl with a spanking which somehow convinced her that she was a worthwhile human being. We, the audience, remain skeptical.

Never mind. It was nothing compared to the year that we watched Change of Habit, a movie starring Elvis and Mary Tyler Moore. I know, sounds awesome, right? Mary Tyler Moore plays a nun. Elvis plays an inner-city doctor. This movie is now referred to only as "The Incident," as in, "We prescreen them now, ever since The Incident."

More pictures to follow, when the internets stop foiling me at every turn.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


This new imperative brought to you by my niece, the incomparable Miss Lucy. It's one of the apparently gazillion things she's learned to do since last Tuesday.

No, seriously.

Today she said "ball," which as far as I know she's never said before. She's started laughing in this abrupt, hilarious "ha!", every syllable its own world. I spent our walk home from the early years centre composing a goofy song around the sentence "Nobody rocks the house down like Lucy's marching band," and then when I sang it later she banged toys together more-or-less in time. When I do something she thinks is funny she will lean toward me to get her face close to mine before favouring me with her giant grin. She blows my mind, is what I'm trying to say here, people.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

eaten by wolves

Hey, y'all--our internets were broken for a whole week, so if you've been wondering why you haven't heard from me at all, now you know. Postyness later.