Friday, January 29, 2010

Random Friday Thoughts

1 – Yesterday, as I was pulling out of the parking lot of my office building, I noticed that the car in front of me had a vanity license plate. It said “Sweti” which I think was supposed to mean “Sweetie” but really ends up looking like “Sweaty.” Methinks the driver of said car didn’t necessarily think that idea through quite enough.

2 – My knee makes this really gross crinkle crackle noise when I bend it. It’s done that for a really long time, like over a year, but is only just now starting to hurt. Everyone that’s heard it seems to think I need to go to the doctor. I think I’ll take some flaxseed oil and glucosamine and see what’s what. I probably shouldn’t start training for that half marathon I want to run either. It’s only one little knee, right? I have another one!

3 – Violet is quickly becoming the most argumentative member of our household. I swear, I could say “The sky is blue” and she would argue with me about how wrong I am. This is very annoying to someone like me who clearly knows everything about everything. She’s also starting to act all angsty all the time, which is also fun. I do not really like this age, I must say. Nope, not at all.

4 – I am now annoyed because Mr. Chick just called me and is going to be working late tonight executing a search warrant, when we are supposed to be out buying a grill. This might not seem like a big deal, but we are hosting a cookout tomorrow and I threw our old grill away yesterday. Stupid criminals are cramping my style. Quit stealing and get a job, jeez.

5 – I got an email from Lily’s teacher today. Apparently, there is a head lice outbreak in the 3rd grade. A head lice check is an excellent way to start the weekend. I’m looking forward to it immensely. I’m choosing to look on the bright side and be happy that at least there's no soccer tournament this weekend.

Lovely weekend wishes to all!
Thursday, January 28, 2010

It's All Fun and Games Until Mother Chick Rips Your Head Off

Seriously, what is with kids today? Violet called me at work today and was in tears at the after school program. A boy was hitting and pushing her AND calling her a bitch. WTF?

After I popped a vein in my eyeball from the rage, I tore ass out of work and was at school in less than 1o minutes. Luckily, I was wearing my chunky heeled bitch boots, so the counselors could hear me marching up to the school from at least a mile away. It was quite the entrance. I actually felt a little sorry for the counselor when I walked in because she looked pretty scared. Not sorry enough to spare her my wrath though, because there were several problems with today's incident:

1 - Violet called us from her cell phone to report what was going on. In my opinion, a counselor or program director should have called to speak to me. They never did and that's not cool.

2 - Apparently this boy had been pushing and hitting not just Violet but several other kids, several times over the course of several hours. When I asked Violet where the counselors were, she said they were busy playing football. I get that part of their job is to play with the kids, but they are also supposed to supervise them to make sure these kinds of things don't happen, or to stop them quickly when they do.

3 - When I questioned the counselors on what happened, they had no idea that he had actually hit and pushed Violet. Because they didn't realize that he had actual put his hands on my child (because he clearly wants me to remove his eyeballs through his nostrils), they didn't suspend him from the program and send him home. So, they didn't see what happened because they weren't watching, then they didn't research thoroughly enough to get a clear understanding of what actually occurred. As a result, I had to take my kid home to remove her from the situation. What's wrong with that picture?

I definitely have some follow up work to do here, and I will. Part of me wonders if I did the right thing by taking Violet home, because she needs to learn to deal with some of this stuff on her own. I really don't think this was one of those times, though. I wanted her to feel supported and safe and to know that if she is in a situation where she feels threatened, I will do everything in my power to help her. And that it is never okay for someone to treat her like that.

Violet did tell me later that she said to the boy when he hit her "Are your parents proud of you when you act like that?" To which I said, "That was a really good thing to say." while thinking "Next time though, punch him in the mouth."
Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Doing My Part for Global Diplomacy

The company that I work for is actually pretty big. As in global. In my office alone, we have a fairly large contingent of Ukrainian computer programmers and let me tell you, you have not lived until you've listened to two Ukrainian men argue in Slavic over who forgot to refill the coffeepot after pouring the last cup. Those Ukrainians, they love their coffee fiercely.

Anyway, we sometimes have visitors to our office from our other locations around the world. Today a visitor from one of our Chinese offices, whom we'll call Lisa (did you know that the Chinese all adopt American sounding names for business purposes because they are easier to pronounce? I think this is kind of sad, actually), arrived for a month-long project. Having been pre-selected as the office ambassador prior to Lisa's arrival, the tasks of showing her around the office and taking her out to dinner after work fell to me.

Early in the day, I did some last minute research on Chinese culture to ensure that I didn't do anything to inadvertently offend her. Number one on the list of "Don't Do This To A Chinese Person" was touching. Apparently, the Chinese dislike being touched by strangers. Chinese people and I have that in common, actually. Interestingly enough, when Lisa arrived, the first thing she did was hug me.

My research also said the Chinese don't like to use the word no. If you ask a question they will respond with "Maybe" even if the answer is really no. My research instructed me to do the same, so as not to appear rude. At one point, Lisa asked me if the bathroom was "that way" and pointed in the wrong direction. When I said "Maybe" and pointed the other way, she looked at me like I was maybe smoking a little of the crack.

At dinner, Lisa asked me what I like to do for fun. When I mentioned my daughters and their various extracurricular activities, she said "Oh, you don't look old enough to have a baby, even if you have at age twenty. I am twenty six and have no babies." This is when I remembered that my research also said that I should be prepared to answer personal questions that I might think are inappropriate, and to be vague but polite.

When Lisa asked, "You will have more babies, yes?" I thought to myself "Hell to the no" but instead just laughed and and answered "I don't know...maybe?"
Monday, January 25, 2010

On Comments

There was an interesting discussion on Studio Thirty Plus the other day on blog comments. The question posed was about whether or not you, as a blogger, respond to comments and if so, how? Do you reply back in the comment thread? Email back? Something else?

I found it interesting that some people said they respond to comments within the actual comment thread itself. I've never thought to do this. I guess it's because of how I visit and comment on blogs. I leave comments but don't actually go back to check and see if they were responded to. I suppose I automatically assumed others operated this same way. Now I'm wondering if I've been doing it wrong.

Once upon a time, I had a different blog for two plus years, and received my fair share of comments on it. At the time, I read a lot of blogs and commented on a few fairly regularly. This was before blogging became hugely ridiculously popular, so there really wasn't a Comment Code of Ethics. Also, I was probably just a selfish whorebag who thought everything I had to say was beyond interesting, so of course the masses would read and respond.

These days, if someone is kind enough to visit and leave a comment here, I return the favor by visiting and commenting on their blog. I actually like this method, because I find a lot of great blogs this way. Of course, I also comment on other blogs too, if I have something to say. If I read a blog and don't comment, most likely I have nothing interesting to say that day. But if it's a blog I read regularly, I'll most likely comment at some point.

Others still said they reply to comments directly via email. I've actually experienced this recently. I've read Cecily at Uppercase Woman for years, but also hadn't commented in many years. Cecily has what I consider to be a huge audience and yet, I've commented on her blog twice in the last couple of weeks and both times, she responded back to me directly, via email. It was almost like getting an email from the President. Or maybe the First Lady. Or Whitney Houston. Oh wait, that bitch never writes anyone back (Check out my 100 things list if you are dying to figure out what I mean by that, #79 to be exact).

Anyway, I thought it was pretty classy for someone with such a wide readership to take the time to respond individually. Nonetheless, I'll probably keep on keeping on just as I have been, but I'm interested in the thoughts of others on this subject (all 9 of you who read this thing, anyway).

So, if you have a blog, how do you handle comments? Do you appreciate reciprocal comments or individual responses to the comments you leave? Along the same lines, if you read blogs and don't comment, why is that?
Friday, January 22, 2010

Random Friday Thoughts

1. People constantly amaze me with their aptitude for laziness. Example: The elevators in my office building break ALL. THE. TIME. The last time one broke down, it actually fell a couple of floors with someone inside. Luckily they weren't hurt, but the fire department had to come, there was a crowd gathered, it was all very dramatic. The elevators were out of commission completely for several days after that and I decided that since I rather like being an able-bodied individual, I'd be just fine taking the stairs every day. Our building is only five floors, so this it totally doable. I've heard tell that since the "incident" the elevators make a terrible clicking noise and shudder and hesitate when reaching a floor. I find it fascinating that some people still voluntarily board the Elevators 'O Certain Death on a daily basis. When I walked past the elevator bank this morning, some guy was holding the door for me. 'You sure?' he asked, when I said I was taking the stairs. Yep, I'm sure.

2. I've felt all day like I have a sneeze stuck that won't come out. Except, I've sneezed about a thousand times and I still have the stuck sneezeness going on. Is annoying, in case you were wondering.

3. Violet is going out of town with a friend tonight, for the first time ever, for THREE WHOLE NIGHTS. I'm a little freaked out. May need to drink heavily this weekend. Not that that's out of the ordinary or anything.

4. Serioulsy, what is with people? One of my employees resigned and today was her last day. So of course, she left at lunch time to get a sandwich and never came back. It must have been a really good sandwich. Loser.

5. Why am I again not looking forward to this weekend? Oh, that's right. Another all weekend soccer tournament. For the second weekend in a row. Excellent.

Lovely weekend wishes to all!
Wednesday, January 20, 2010

She Is Definitely Her Mother's Daughter

Oh, Lily. That kid kills me. She has such a spirit and I love that but man, she tries me sometimes.


Scene: Lily has just done something mean to Violet for the 100th time.

Mother Chick: "Hey! Go to your room."

Lily: "I wanted to go there anyway, see you later." Happily skips off to bedroom.



Scene: Lily has just done something mean to Violet for the 1000th time.

Mother Chick: "Hey! Give me your DS for that."

Lily: "Here, I was done playing anyway." Hands over DS without batting an eye.


See what I mean?

What's that saying? What doesn't kill me makes me stronger? I think it's more like "What doesn't kill me still makes we want to drink a lot of wine."

Yep, that's definitely it.
Friday, January 15, 2010

Random Friday Thoughts

1. Does it make me a bad person because I’m secretly (well, maybe not that secretly) happy that Violet made first cuts for the school soccer team and Ringleader from the infamous Mean Girl Incident did not? Granted, I don’t really care if it makes me a bad person as it’s simple, really. Mess with my kid, and I will want to rip your face off. I won’t actually rip your face off, but I will be happy that karma is in fact, a beyotch (like Ringleader!), and you got what you deserve. Which in this case, I am. Happy, that is.

2. Why is Smart Food White Cheddar popcorn so darn tasty? Mmm, popcorn…nom nom nom.

3. Why do my dog’s feet always smell like Fritos? Not that I sniff her feet on a regular basis, but she’s jabbed a paw in my face a time or two when she would like some attention (yes, she’s a spoiled brat) and it never fails, Eau de Frito-Lay.

4. I wonder if it’s a bad thing that on January 15th, I’m drinking a can of Diet Coke that’s advertising Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios. Stupid vending machine guy and his stupid old soda. Can you get old soda poisoning? I guess we’ll find out, because I didn’t notice until the can was empty. If you don’t hear from me after this, it’s because I died of old soda poisoning. At least there is now record of it on the internets, so my family can file a big lawsuit. I feel faint…

5. How is it possible to not be that glad that it’s the weekend? Oh, right, an all weekend soccer tournament will do it every time. Games start at 6:00 PM tonight all the way through Sunday. Good times.

Lovely weekend wishes to all!
Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Won't You Be My Neighbor?

I'm not what you would call a neighborly person. I know the names of the neighbors on either side of my house, and I'll wave if I see you outside, but that's pretty much the beginning and end of any effort I make. I'm not unfriendly, I just don't go out of my way to befriend people based on their proximity to my abode.

My husband is much better at the whole neighbor thing than I am. He'll come inside and say random things like "Bill and Cheryl are going on vacation next week," to which I'll reply "Who the hell are Bill and Cheryl?" and he'll remind me that "Hello! Bill and Cheryl live in the house directly behind ours." And I'll promptly forget because I don't really care, until the next time he cares to share tidbits on The Life and Times of Bill and Cheryl.

I have this one neighbor though, that I see quite often. We'll call this neighbor Mr. Little, because he stands about 5 1/2 feet tall and probably weighs 100 lbs soaking wet. He is a lithesome slip of a man. Wow, there are eight words I never thought I'd string together in a sentence, but I digress. Mr. Little is the neighbor I see most often because he is ALWAYS outside. He works in his yard and cuts his grass, Every. Single. Day. Even in the winter.

He also has a really nice swimming pool that's actually more of a water feature. I say this because I've never seen anyone actually swim in said pool. Or float. Or doggy paddle. Or backstroke. Nothing. Ever. I really can't say why I find this so strange. For some reason, I find the need to randomly mention the fact that nobody ever swims in his pool to visitors to my house. It can make for pretty weird conversation. Example:

Random Guest: "Thanks for inviting us for dinner, it was really good."

Mother Chick: "You're welcome. Also, did you know my neighbor never swims in his pool? Isn't that weird?"

Anyway, moving on! Every time I see Mr. Little outside, he has on the the exact same outfit: A black and white flannel shirt, black jeans and black shoes with velcro straps. I sometimes wonder if he has the same outfit hanging on every hanger in his closet. He even wears this outfit in the summer, when the average temperature hovers in the high 90's with 100% humidity.

Recently though, I somehow found out that Mr. Little is a former Mr. Universe bodybuilder. Now, I really don't see how that's possible based on the Mr. Little I see every day. Mr. Little is short and tiny, he is twee! Remember, 5 1/2 feet tall and 100 lbs soaking wet! Not that he'd know anything about being soaking wet, since he never swims in his pool. (That is just weird. Clearly, I can't get over it.)

Now, I started this post by saying that I am not very big on active participation in the neighborhood and all things neighborly. BUT! I can't help thinking that it would make things more interesting around here if he should one day decide to mow his grass in one of his old Mr. Universe Speedos.

I'm just saying.
Friday, January 8, 2010

Mother Chick Chat - a.k.a. All About Me

In a getting to know you type move, here are 100 completely random (and probably not that interesting) facts about me:

1. I am married to my high school sweetheart.

2. He’s a cop. A sheriff’s deputy. Well, a detective, actually.

3. I once said that I would never be with anyone who a) was a cop or b) owned a motorcycle.

4. My cop husband loves his motorcycle.

5. I once said that I would never have any children.

6. I have two children.

7. Clearly, I say a lot of dumb things.

8. My favorite color is pink. I find this slightly cheesy as I get older, but I like it anyway.

9. I can hold a grudge like nobody’s business. Cross me and you are dead to me, end of story.

10. I realize this is not one of my most redeeming qualities, but I don’t care enough to change.

11. Because of #9, there are whole branches of my family tree that I never speak to.

12. One of those branches is my dad. I haven’t spoken to him in almost a year and have no plans to do so any time soon.

13. I hate gossip. Before engaging in gossip with or about me, refer to number 9 on this list.

14. I can raise one eyebrow without the other.

15. Only my left one though.

16. If I raise one eyebrow at you, it means I think you are either a) stupid or b) lying to me.

17. I once went two years without talking to my sister. We weren’t mad at each other or anything though.

18. Now I talk to my sister every day.

19. I was born 2 months premature and almost died at birth.

20. I was breech and the doctor didn’t know it.

21. A nurse saw my butt and said “I see the head!” Personally, I don’t think my butt looks anything like my head.

22. My poor mother had to deliver me breech with forceps and no drugs. I probably still owe her for that one.

23. I almost died because my head got stuck. Once the doctor finally delivered me, he lifted me too high and all my blood rushed back down the umbilical cord to my mother, so I had to have a blood transfusion.

24. Everything turned out fine, because I am clearly a) fabulous and b) brilliant.

25. I never leave the house without having my toenails painted.

26. I hate clowns. They are freaky little bastards.

27. I am a very skeptical, ‘believe it when I see it’ kind of person.

28. I read constantly and have since I was little. I like most every genre, except maybe science fiction.

29. I heart my library card. I am a nerd like that.

30. Although I like to be social, I also appreciate alone time and when I don’t get it, I get cranky.

31. Some day, I would like to write a book. A novel, I think.

32. I once tried to teach myself how to knit but I had the yarn wound so tight that I broke the needles. I am clearly too uptight for knitting.

33. I truly believe that karma is a mean bitch.

34. I rarely watch TV.

35. I do like the Food Network though, because I like to cook.

36. I like to take recipes and adapt them to a healthier version.

37. I am also a fan of throwing a bunch of ingredients together and seeing what happens.

38. My family doesn’t always like my “experiments,” but they humor me anyway.

39. I also like to run, for fun. This is a foreign concept to many people.

40. I’ve run a few 5K road races, and would like to complete a half marathon in 2010. I’m not sure I’ll ever work my way up to a marathon. We’ll see.

41. A couple of years ago, I ran so much, my two big toenails fell off. It was gross.

42. I’m really vain about my feet so I glued on fake toenails (yes, they make fake toenails) until they grew back. My friends and family found this really funny. I did not.

43. I got better running shoes and my toenails don’t fall off anymore.

44. I really like to travel but I hate flying on airplanes. I’ll do it, but I hate it.

45. Places I most want to travel to are: Italy, Greece and Alaska, in that order.

46. My least favorite place I’ve been so far: Los Angeles. That place sucked. If you love it there, more power to ya. Just not my kind of town. Not to mention, LAX is a shit hole of an airport. The mountains, or hills, or whatever they are, were pretty though.

47. I am seriously addicted to Diet Coke. It’s my one vice though, so I don’t sweat it.

48. Speaking of sweat, I rarely perspire, even when exercising. This is weird, but handy, living in the South and all.

49. I had another blog before this one, from 2004-2006. I had a fair amount of readers and I’m kind of irritated that I let it go, as it chronicled a lot of important events in my life during that time, like the death of my mother-in-law from cancer.

50. It amazes me how much more aware you become of your mortality as you get older. I used to be a lot more fearless.

51. I also hate watching others around me get older. It bothers me to watch my mother age and know that she won’t be here forever.

52. I also find that I question more now that I’m older, rather than accepting things at face value or going with the flow.

53. This can make things more difficult, but also more interesting.

54. I’m a pop culture junkie. Celebrities kind of irritate me though. Most of them, anyway.

55. I’m also a trivia nerd. I have the most random facts floating around in my head. I can whip some ass at Trivial Pursuit.

56. When I was in the first grade, I refused to wear anything but skirts to school. Now I hate getting dressed up. Luckily, I work in a casual office.

57. It amazes me that my two children have polar opposite personalities to one another, and that they are also so different from me.

58. I can go eat in a restaurant or go to the movies by myself, it doesn’t bother me.

59. I love to go to the movies at the theater, but rarely watch movies at home. I cancelled our Netflix account because we never used it.

60. Both of my girls play soccer. I never thought I would be a soccer mom, but I love it.

61. I am a very competitive person.

62. This is interesting, because I never played competitive sports in school. I was a cheerleader and gymnast.

63. I am actually a pretty shy person when I’m around people I don’t know.

64. Some people mistake this and think I’m a snob, but I’m really not.

65. This is one personality trait I am working on changing.

66. I’m a fairly impatient person. I’m all about instant gratification.

67. I think it’s funny when people fall down. Well, as long as they’re not seriously hurt.

68. You know how people say to enjoy your kids while they’re small because it goes by too quickly? Now that my kids are older, I’ve realized that it’s really true. I’m holding on to these last days of their childhood with both hands, but they are still slipping away little by little.

69. I hate loud noises. They actually make me mad. The sound of a loud motorcycle infuriates me.

70. My maiden name is really uncommon. Anyone with that last name is usually my relative. It never exists in those books or on websites where you can trace your genealogy. We may have just grown from pods.

71. When I get angry, I clean my house. It makes me feel better.

72. I can’t stand clutter. Sometimes this is a problem because I throw things away, and then think of uses for them after they’re already gone.

73. I like to sit in the sun, even though I know it’s bad for me.

74. I have two small tattoos and would like to have both of them removed. Since they are mostly hidden, I may not ever get around to it.

75. My favorite food is mashed potatoes; I could eat them every day. I don’t actually eat them very often though. I did eat them nearly every day when I was pregnant.

76. When I was pregnant with Lily, I had pre-term labor and was on bed rest for 5 months. Bed rest sucks.

77. I really like pens. All kinds of pens. Especially free pens.

78. My creative pursuits pretty much begin and end with writing. I am not artistic: I cannot draw, paint, sculpt scrapbook, etc. I would like to get more into photography though.

79. When I was in the third grade, I wrote a fan letter to Whitney Houston and asked her to send me an autographed picture. She never did. What a bitch.

80. I can’t think of anything that I’m allergic to. Stupid people, maybe?

81. I have absolutely no sense of direction. I once got lost in my own neighborhood. That was a fun time.

82. I’m an okay driver, except for when I run into stuff accidentally. Like mailboxes.

83. For some reason, every time I drive through an intersection, I have this irrational fear that someone is going to run a red light and t-bone my car. What’s that about?

84. I actually have a lot of irrational fears. I just stuff them in a box and don’t look at them very often.

85. I love to shop, but always look for sale items. It pains me to pay full price for things. Ann Taylor Loft has the most kick ass sales around.

86. The one thing I don’t skimp on is makeup. Bare Escentuals is the bomb diggity. It is never on sale but is like gold in little plastic pots.

87. I have a fondness for 80s teen movies. In my book, “The Breakfast Club” is one fine piece of cinema.

88. I am always freezing.

89. I think the worst show on TV is that “Real Housewives” crap on Bravo – those are some annoying bitches.

90. When it comes to real life, I don’t cry very often. I can, however, get all teary over commercials and TV shows and movies. I get that this doesn’t make sense.

91. My favorite movie of all time is probably “Titanic.” That one gets me every time.

92. I cannot stand garlic breath. Seriously, ew.

93. I think the beach is the most relaxing place in the world. I would live there if I could. But who the hell has that kind of money?

94. I dislike pretentious people. A lot.

95. I don’t like people looking at me or being the center of attention, it makes me uncomfortable.

96. I don’t think I’ve ever met a famous person, that I can think of. I once saw Hulk Hogan at the airport. He’s tall.

97. I am an extreme perfectionist. This is an annoying habit.

98. I get compliments all the time on the perfume that I wear. It’s from Target and costs $13.99.

99. I wonder, every day, whether I’m doing a good job raising my girls.

100. I hope, every day, that I’m doing a good job raising my girls. They are my greatest thing.
Thursday, January 7, 2010

Real Life Mean Girls

This afternoon, Mr. Chick called me at work to say that he had just talked to Violet and she was really upset because a couple of girls at school started a rumor that she was a lesbian and kids were laughing at her. Commence Mother Chick effectively losing her shit, because this is not the first time that we've had trouble with these bitches girls. A few months ago, they would not stop leaving messages and texting rude things to Violet and calling her cell phone at all hours of the day and night. At that time, I called the ringleader's mother and I thought we resolved the situation. Apparently not.

I'm also irritated that this all happened today at school, the guidance counselor was involved because Violet went to him, and yet I never received a phone call from anyone in charge at school. What's that about? I left a voicemail for the counselor to call me tomorrow because I want to know what was done about what happened today, and what happens if something similar happens again with the same girls.

I will say, I talked to Violet this evening and think I am satisfied with how the counselor handled the situation, but I still want to talk to him directly to make sure we are on the same page and I handle it appropriately at home. I will not tolerate any more bullying and want to make my position clear.

Luckily, Violet seems to have come out the other side of this episode relatively unscathed. We talked about how she did the right thing going to the guidance counselor and some other things she can do if something like this happens again. She is officially a rock star and I am so proud of her.

Mean middle school girls suck. Bitches.
Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The One With The List

Last year, my New Year's resolution was to not say so many swear words. Holy shit, did that not work out!

This year, however, I'm going with some things that I think are a bit more attainable and should ultimately lead to a more pleasant existence for more people than just me:

1. I will have more patience with my children. I'm going to try. Really. I mean it.

2. I will be more charitable, and not just by donating money. I will try to teach my children to be charitable as well.

3. I will relax and enjoy life more. I'm going to try. Really. I mean it.

4. I will make a list of things I want to accomplish this year and I will actually accomplish those things. (First thing on the list - Make a list.)

5. I will do more things to save money this year, and actually save money, not just spend more.

Let's hope I do better this year than last, dammit!
Monday, January 4, 2010

A Night At The 5th Grade Museum

Last school year, Violet talked quite frequently about a girl we'll call "Summer", who was the coolest girl in the 5th grade. Summer wouldn't talk to Violet, because she was apparently not cool enough to be Summer's friend, and Violet didn't understand why. Thus was the first in a long line of lessons for Violet entitled "Lo People, They Doth Suck."

When I inquired as to what it was that made Summer so great, Violet thought it had something to do with her pretty hair and the shirts she wore under her school uniform. Seems like a scant few reasons, but far be it from me to question the 5th grade cool-o-meter. I happen to think it had something to do with the fact that Summer's mother let her wear thong underwear, which is just wrong on more levels than I can count, but I digress.

One night, the school hosted a history program based on "Night at the Museum" where every 5th grader dressed up as a different historical figure and gave a spiel about that person when you walked up and pushed a button taped to their hand. Violet was Samuel de Champlain, who was an explorer and apparently pretty boring, because the only thing I remember is that he died on Christmas Day.

After listening to Violet, I walked around the 5th grade classrooms hearing about other explorers, some presidents, some Native Americans and other random figures, like Daniel Boone. For some reason, I just thought that one was a strange choice, but I bet the kid picked it because he got to bring one of those guns that has a cork in the end that pops out when you pull the trigger.

After Daniel told me all about his trials and tribulations as a hunter in the American frontier, I moved over to Summer. I wasn't quite sure who her historical figure was supposed to be. She was wearing a pink prom dress type thing and had big hot rollery Farrah Fawcetty curls in her hair. "This oughta be good," I thought, as I pushed the button on her hand.

Turns out, Summer was Clara Barton, a pioneer woman and nurse. "Clara" regaled me with tales of her achievements as a humanitarian and battlefield nurse during the Civil War, and told me all about how she organized the American Red Cross. When she finished her speech, I said "Good job" and walked away, while thinking to myself "I highly doubt she did any of those things in a pink prom dress, dumbass."

I'm just saying.

Sick Day, Dad Style

Not long ago, the school clinic assistant called my cell phone while I sat in my office, shuffling papers or completing some other equally important task. I wasn't surprised, as I'd been nursing Lily through an ear infection for a few days, which had culminated in a fun-filled holiday weekend visit to the urgent care center.

Evidently the antibiotics and eardrops we had procured hadn't quite kicked in yet, and she was in the clinic complaining that her ear hurt. The nurse requested that someone appear with pain reliever, posthaste. You can't just sign a note giving the school permission to give your kid drugs when it seems like it might be necessary, you have to bring the stuff to school and personally hand it to your child. I am in complete agreement with this rule, by the way, as I would rather not have some random clinic assistant dosing up my child without my knowledge. It is, however, rather inconvenient when there are important papers to shuffle at one's job.

Since I was buried under all the paper shuffling, my lovely husband was going to have to make the trip to school. I knew that this was going to create a hardship for him, as I had spoken to him less than 30 minutes before the school called, and he had been on his way to play golf. I dialed his cell and explained the dilemma. While somewhat put out, since he'd been this close to teeing off, he agreed to make the trip and dispense the stuff as requested.

By the time I called him back to check in, about an hour later, he had gone to the school and was already back on the golf course. When I inquired on how things went at the clinic, he hesitated. Suddenly, I heard what sounded like Lily's voice in the background.

"Is that Lily?" I asked.

"Yeah, the school made me take her with me because her temperature was 99.2 when I got to the clinic," he answered.

"You have our sick child out playing golf?"

"No, she's just riding on the golf cart."

"So, you have our child, who was sent home sick from school, riding along on the cart while you play golf?"

"What? I gave her some Motrin."

I'm sure this would have seemed like a completely rational line of thinking if I also had a Y chromosome, right?