Tuesday, July 01, 2008

stories and birthdays

We went to Patrick's tonight with some friends to celebrate their 20th anniversary. Patrick's anniversary, that is. Betty and Uncle Tom, Young Regis and Amber, Regis and Teresa, and Peter made a good table of lots of stories and laughs.

We got home and there was a messy pile of debris under our birch tree. You could see it was the remains of a nest and there was a small blue spotted egg in it. It had to be a grackle. It's exactly the kind of nest you'd expect from a beady-eyed bird like the grackle: woody stems and no structure. If you've ever seen the nest of say, a chipping sparrow or a finch, there is a world of difference. Those are birds that take nest building seriously.

We were going to babysit the Hynes/McGraw dogs this weekend but apparently they are going to accompany T&B on the trip to Wisconsin. Our job has been eliminated. We've been downsized. Thank goodness the benefits have been preserved intact: access to the bar, the gazebo, and the pool. It's a tough economy. We'll have to wait and see if the market (for dog sitting) has legs.

We have a six-inch piece of sidewalk in front of our house that has been identified by the city as hazardous because it sticks up higher than the rest of the sidewalk. It's painted white to alert us. There are maybe 20 of these hazards on ours and the neighbor's sidewalks. What to do? I called a couple of cement people today and they laughed. They only deal with big jobs like malls and storefronts and they said they have to rent the equipment to do that. It's a mystery. I thought a cheap fix would be to get a wire brush and scrub the white paint off. Ta da!

I looked in the Home Magazine and there is a company that does something called slab jacking or mud slabbing or something like that. From the ad, I got the idea that they pumped something under the sidewalk to encourage it to align with the rest of the sidewalk pieces. What the hell kind of machine would you need to do that I wonder. It just doesn't sound very scientific. It could open up a chasm the size of the San Andreas fault.

If you read my blog, you know I don't pretend to deal in fact but I don't want to look like a complete dope either so sometimes I look things up. (I only remember "the market has legs" because Mr. Butler said it once.) I checked it out on wikipedia and what worries me about the future is that some middle school kid could do a google search for "economy" or "market" and write down some of the crap I've written here and put it in a report thinking it's true. The possibility for perpetuating BS is just endless.

It's my mom's birthday today. She went out for lunch, out for dinner tonight, and has a breakfast party tomorrow. I think she has a more active social life than we do.

I know from my own kids that the gene pools of our parents take a pretty good hit when it comes to blaming someone or something for our bad traits. It's in magazines all the time: this is genetic and that is genetic and they never talk about things like sense of humor or being good with numbers. I'd just like to say that all my good traits come from the gene pool of either my mom or my dad and the bad traits are anomalies. Who's to say that there aren't free-floating genes out there that land on you and take root like pollen or dust. Little alien bits of selfishness or laziness or gluttony.

Parenting is a very hard job that you think will be sort of over except for the good parts once your kids are adults. Not so. It's a lifelong miasma of fun and joy but also work and worry and pain. You don't appreciate the job your own parents did until you're old. I appreciate it today. Happy birthday to my mom.


Anonymous said...

Get this entry published somewhere. You're better than Garrison Keillor and you don't veer off into politics. Well, except for the market having legs thing. I get a strange visual when I read that phrase.

Anonymous said...

You're darn right about the parent/appreciate thing, Teresa. Mine continue to work their tail feathers off for us kids.
I always say it's a good thing Miles is cute or I would've given up long ago...of course I'm kidding, but the cuteness sure helps a mom get her second wind at 3am :)