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

something naked and clean

1. There is a new member of senior management at the office, and she looks exactly like someone I went to elementary school with, only taller. Quite a bit taller, since the former classmate was (presumably still is) a dwarf. I like the whole doppelganger-with-a-twist phenomenon; I used to work with the African American version of my college roommate, and my hairstylist looks a lot like a female Mick Jagger. Which is a more attractive package than you would think, she makes it work somehow.

2. This weekend was my sixteen-year wedding anniversary. Nora packed her golf clubs, her best stuffed animals, and all the horribly boring board games that I will not play (Monopoly, Life) and went to Grandma’s. LT and I spent the weekend sleeping late, being naked, and shoving drinks and fatty food down our gullets. Just like married, alcoholic, foie-gras-producing geese. It was fun but I feel a bit like I need some fancy celebrity detox now. Wheatgrass, massage, intravenous vitamin B12.

3. Nora has graduated to “sparring” at her dojo. She has all this crazy equipment in a dragon-decorated duffel bag, and will strap on her helmet and put in her mouth guard any time you ask. Hooray for getting to hit people! In a safe, respectful way that furthers your spiritual development, of course.

4. All day I have been plagued by a wrong number from Puerto Rico. The person on the other end does not seem to understand that he has the wrong number. After a few of these calls I stopped answering, so now there are several increasingly frantic, mixed English/Spanish voicemail messages asking me WHERE I AM. DONDE ESTAS? Not in Puerto Rico, that’s for sure. Let it sink back in the ocean. (Actually, I have nothing against Puerto Rico, except maybe the big traffic mess its enthusiasts make in Chicago on parade days. I just felt like quoting Rita Moreno.)

5. Kid has the greatest moves. Envious.

6. Keep quiet about your lack of faith in these states.

7. Beautiful interactive graph on climate science. (Click on the graph to play with it.)

8. This is the final week I will walk a second-grader to school. We always shortcut through this cool little riverside bike trail that we call “Goose Poop Path.” Did you know that an adult goose can poop between one and four pounds of poop a day? It is true. I have evidence, on the bike trail. Anyway, if you step carefully the shortcut is worth it, for the quiet and tranquility and lack of traffic, plus we often see cool animals on the way to school. Of course it is nicer when the animals are, you know, living.

9. There was a dead possum right in the middle of the path, not very chewed or anything, just wet and dead, and Nora had to poke it with a stick and speculate on how it met its end. I like to encourage her scientific curiosity, I just wish her areas of interest weren’t always so gross. Can’t she get fascinated by astronomy or physics? Something nice and clean. But no, it is always pond water and taxidermy and decaying foodstuffs.

10. The writing journal came home from school recently. Sometimes it was totally free writing, sometimes they received prompts such as the following, where kids pretended they could change the color of something. I am sure the more fanciful and sci-fi kids picked the sky or grass, and maybe a few sad self-esteem disasters picked their hair or eyes, but Nora elected to ruin motorists’ days. (Click for legibility.)

And here is part of the entry where she outed my cat as having a mental illness. Now the whole second grade knows our family’s secret. Poor Rocko.

—mimi smartypants has a few brain difficulties herself.