mimi smartypants
Seriously, though: what's with the penguins?

you, sir, are made entirely of dryer lint

HEY! I AM NOT WORKING! SO IT'S EITHER TIME-WASTING LINKS, YAWN-INDUCING BABY STORIES, OR MY DRUNKEN RANTINGS FOR YOU! WHICH FIRST?

This guy has friends. Good friends. Friends who covered everything he owned in tinfoil.

Oh yeah! North Korean aerobics!

You + Stevie Nicks = a very strange idea for next Christmas.

More art, plus drugs.

Awww. Cuddly bacon!

I became interested in this book about SUVs after reading a New Yorker article that contained many quotes from the author, including a brilliant discussion of “passive safety” vs. “active safety.” The former mindset treats disaster as inevitable, leading to the rationalization that you had better cocoon yourself as much as possible while you wait for it to strike (hence the [deluded] notion of SUV drivers that they are better off in a behemoth of a car). The active-safety view tries to avoid trouble, like for instance by having a small nimble car that can swerve around obstacles easily, with well-engineered crumple zones and good crash-test results. The article fascinated me further by musing about whether all the Big Scary Uncontrollable Stuff in the world (terrorism, war, SARS/AIDS/BSE/influenza, snipers, child abductions, cancer)* has led to a rise in the type of head-in-the-sand, I-need-a-big-giant-”safe”-car thinking that drives SUV sales.

*By the way, how do you guys keep from going insane about this stuff? Do you have some kind of god/faith thing that makes you believe everything will turn out okay? Do you have a streak of really super-deep denial that allows you to go “la la la” and not think about it? I have always been kind of an anxious person but whoa, having a kid has really ramped it up. Except when I am too busy to be worried, which is a lot, with the result being that these days I oscillate (wildly) between (a) periods of intense focus on Nora and her immediate needs and joys, during which the Terrifying World Out There does not intrude, and (b) periods of lying-awake nail-biting fear, where I invent nightmare scenarios where things happen to my daughter (either specific evils or just “the world generally turns to shit and I can't improve it for her”), and these thoughts poke at and irritate me like the lazy-metaphor grain of sand in the oyster, only instead of making a pearl I just make myself batshit insane. So if you have any coping mechanisms, besides religious faith (no can do), ostrich-like denial (ditto), or alcohol abuse (well, duh), I'd like to hear them.

HERE ARE A PAIR OF STRANGE, SEXUAL-BUT-NOT ANECDOTES

1. Nora, like so many of us, completely falls apart in the evenings. If you consider playing with blocks and learning how the universe works to be her “job,” she is like the middle manager who puts up with crap all day long, but then at the end of the frazzled workday cannot wait to get home and drink too much or stare dully at televised sports or yell at the dog. Not having these adult ways to relax at the end of the day, she tends to cry and squirm and freak out instead. The nighttime bath is all splishy splashy fun, but she behaves as if getting dressed in pajamas afterwards is a violation of the Geneva Convention. It is our daily variation on that Monty Python Spanish Inquisition skit (“No! Not the warm, snuggly, pajamas! With feet! Ahhhh!”) After the Pajama Torture she is all worked up, writhing around and crying on my lap in the rocking chair, and LT goes to make the bottle. I have come to refer to this period, the time in between pajamas and when she is actively sucking down formula, as the Two Minutes Hate. So the other night she is wailing and clutching at my clothing, and during one of her frenzied flails she managed to grab my breast and pinch and twist, causing me to yelp out many bad words (there goes the not-swearing thing), and now I have a small piece missing out of my nipple. Yes! Just call me Old Scabby Boob! All aboard the SS TitScab! There are many things I envisioned myself doing, when I thought about becoming a mother; rubbing antibacterial ointment on a hooter-wound was not one of them.

2. Picture me sleeping, curled up like a comma under my purple down comforter, LT doing his hot-brick impression right next to me. Suddenly I hear a loud, horrible, buzzing, grinding noise, and it wakes me up just enough to get pissed off but not enough to make any coherent deductions. Part of my brain thinks it is my stupid upstairs neighbors, the ones with the booty-shaking music and three-hour vacuuming marathons, part of me thinks it is a snowblower (at midnight?) or a gigantic monster truck idling outside, and part of me must at least have some idea that it is coming from inside my nightstand, because that is the thing that I find myself sleepily whacking at. LT wakes up and says, “What's that?” and I whine, all crabby, “I don't know, make it stop!” So he reaches across me to open the nightstand drawer and I say, “I already checked that, it's not my vibrator!” and then I immediately add “oh, except that it is” as he pulls out my purple vibrator, which has turned itself on and is vibrating away inside the drawer, all demonically possessed, all Poltergeist, all Indian Burial Ground. Spooky!

WHY YOUR HEALTH INSURANCE SUCKS

Because mine is being scammed by unscrupulous providers. I am still in shock that at Nora's first pediatrician visit in the US, a pretty young thing talked to me for maybe five minutes about her baby “vocalizing,” assured me that it sounded like she was “babbling appropriately” (I wish the same could be said for me), gave me a brochure titled something no-shit-Sherlock like “Talk To Your Baby,” and then turned around and billed my insurance $124 for “speech therapy.”

MY HAPPY DREAMS

When my sleep has not been interrupted by haunted vibrators, I have had wonderful vivid dreams about parting my hair in front of an audience (it was pronounced “crooked” and I was disqualified), flunking out of college because I could not pass something called “Advanced Handjob Ethics,” and attending a huge Drunk Yoga class, with several hundred other people. There was a cocktail party, then a yoga class, then another cocktail party. Post-yoga I was drinking a gorgeous cocktail that I described to another student as “a combination of vodka, fennel, and glitter.”

THIS ENTRY KIND OF SUCKED BUT HERE IS NORA WITH TUPPERWARE ON HER HEAD

—mimi smartypants knows when to fold them.