Friday, September 01, 2006
Get your coat, man
This morning when we got up it was 50 degrees, breezy and raining. We reached a high of 54 and it has continued to rain all day. Yesterday wasn't much better. The fair is getting killed by this weather. We stopped by briefly for supper last night. The crowd wasn't as pitiful as it might have been because it was demolition derby night. Lot's of locals heavily involved in that. We ate our fair food and beat it home quickly. Tonight the fair is a total wash. They postponed the truck and tractor pull until Sunday; that's the first time that has happened since I've been around here. Nasty, nasty weather.

Tomorrow they're calling for isolated thunder storms and a 30% chance of precipitation. We're pinning our hopes on tomorrow. Noni and Popi are bringing the cousins over and we're going to make this thing happen. I guess if it's still crappy we can at least do the exhibits, the barn and eat some fair food. We'll pray for some sunshine, or at least rain-free skies.
Thursday, August 31, 2006
Can I have a pony for Christmas?
Does every father of a little girl eventually hear that question? I definitely went through my phase. I got a horse book for my birthday. Then I saw the Black Stallion at the theater. Then the first book I actually read through all by myself was a book about a pony. The book was 64 pages. I was so proud. My love of horses led to the inevitable conclusion...I needed a horse. So I asked for one for Christmas.

Dad tackled my folly head on. Where would we put a horse? What would we feed a horse? Where are you going to ride a horse? Questions, questions, questions. I don't know, Dad, that's your department. He pretty well convinced me that a horse was out of the question.

Yet, you gotta have hope. So I kept my secret wish to myself. On Christmas morning I came downstairs and this is what I found...

OK, it's probably not a horse, but what is it? Any guesses?

It's the logical gift for a girl who wants a horse but can't shelter one.

As a nine year-old I was a bit overwhelmed. Uh, yay! Uh, am I supposed to drive that? The answer was yes. It was an unseasonably warm Christmas day so after breakfast we took the motorcycle outside to try it out. No kidding, I was scared shitless. Dad tried to explain to me how the clutch system and brakes worked. Ah...OK. I had no clue. I have no idea how many stops and starts we went through in the yard. I could gear up, no problem. It was stopping without cutting the engine that I had a problem with. When I'd get going I'd never want to stop because I knew I'd kill the engine and get fussed at. I just couldn't get it. Then I really got in trouble.

Dad said, ride around the yard, but I don't want you going up the golf course. So I rode around the yard a bunch of times, but that's just doing circles. I wanted to open it up a little bit. So I took off up the golf course. Now this was the rough, mind you, not the actual fairway. When I came back to the yard and the engine died Dad was pissed. Really pissed. See, I mentioned that it had been unseasonably warm, that meant the ground was soft and damp from the recent rains. So when I went up the rough of the golf course I laid a nice long furrow. I can remember Dad out there stomping down both sides of my tracks to try to cover the mess I had made. I think that ended our lesson on Christmas day.

It was a couple of years before I fully appreciated that gift, before I became comfortable with it and truly enjoyed it.
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Fair time!
Tonight was the long-awaited first night of the fair and, well, it rained. It rained on the fair parade. Since my MIL's house is on the parade route we attended anyway. Bless their hearts, those kids rode the floats the whole way. And the high school band went by looking like a wet t-shirt contest, all those white bras shining through their white shirts. Attendance was down at the picnic at the house. Most of the crowd is geriatric and many are having health issues this year, or their parents are. Despite the rain we collected a huge amount of damp candy. It's drying out under the lights on the kitchen counter now. Being near the end of the parade route has its benefits. By then those who were stingy with the candy along the route to that point are now throwing it at you by the handfuls.

We did forge ahead to the fairgrounds after the parade was over because I wanted to check out the photography exhibit. My babysitter's daughter had asked me permission to enter a couple of pictures of Emma in the fair and of course I said yes. I saw her before I saw the pictures and she said that Emma's feet had won a blue ribbon. Thank God she told me because I never would have recognized the bottoms of my own child's feet. There was also a picture where Emma was recognizable. I imagine I'll get comments on it because people won't notice we didn't enter it.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Pity this dude

I was the worst spring dance date ever. He was a really nice guy, there was nothing wrong with him. It's just that I had a crush on someone else, who we actually hung with at the dance. My date was a 9th grader and I was a 7th grader. He had a lovely speaking voice, very mellow and deep (He later went on to do radio for a while). We had just acted together in the school play, which had turned out disastrous, largely due to poor choice of material.

The guy I had a crush on was a 7th grader who was going with a 9th grader. But he flirted with me mercilessly and led me on. No kidding, he was a playa. I was so smitten. I got to sit at the dance and watch him and his girl. Gag.

This poor date of mine also suffered for my irrational and shameful prejudice against dating men shorter than me. He was a fine, fine person. It wasn't his fault he was short. But I couldn't cope. Somehow that stuff is amplified in a school setting. I think I danced with him twice. Why did I even go with him? I liked him as a friend, and he asked.

It seems like I'm using this blog to atone for my sins. Only the awkward and embarrassing memories seem to come back to me. But they really feel like they happened last year, not twenty-some years ago.

To be honest I never got over my prejudice about men shorter than me. As friends they rock. But I need to be with a partner whose physical presence is above mine. I have a strong personality (shocker!), was pretty much raised androgynously, and need to have a "big manly man" to balance me.

As for C. D., I'm really sorry. I'm sorry I ruined your evening. But you certainly felt that kiss was owed to you at the end, and you were right. Tongue and all ;)
Monday, August 28, 2006
Emma gets taken to the non-proverbial woodshed
It finally rained!
We had some seriously sun-scorched earth around here. Today we got an inch of rain. Enough for Emma to play in the puddle, one of her favorite things to do.

My first kiss
I knew it was going to happen. I had a boyfriend and the dance was that night. We had been "going together" for a couple of weeks. He and I had spent two years flirting at the pool. Now we were at the same school and he finally asked me to "go with him." Which mostly consisted of sitting together at lunch.

It was seventh grade. I was making new friends, wishing I could wear makeup, finally shaving my legs and looking forward to that first kiss like all freshly minted new teens do. So we're at the dance, slow dancing, holding hands, our teen hormones raging like crazy.

We're sitting on the bleachers and he lays it on me, the moment I've been waiting for. There was tongue; I was expecting that. What I wasn't expecting was to be totally repulsed by it. I thought I'd be fine. But the actuality of it was a bit of a gross-out. Perhaps it was his technique. Not long after that dance I broke up with him. Grew to despise him by the time we graduated. Ah...the power of a kiss!


After I graduated from college and was living in my apartment in my hometown I bumped into him at the library. We chatted and I realized that we really could get along well. He would call me and we'd go out and do things. I was actually getting to the point (desperate) where I was considering letting him get closer. One evening he was over at my place and I was prepared for escalation. Then he blew it. Totally and completely screwed himself over. He made a comment to me "are you still working out anymore?" Smart, asshole. A woman is thinking about letting down her defenses a little and you make a comment on her body. Case closed, game over. I think I let him kiss me that night and then sent him on his merry way.

After that I concluded that I really was desperate. He was not respectful and I didn't need that again. He was late several times with lame excuses and did not generally follow through on promises. He thought he was going to show me that he was hot stuff in the sack too. Ha! AS IF! And here's the kicker, I went by his mom's house one time, WHERE HE LIVED, and in the bathroom there was a giant honkin' floater in the unflushed toilet. Actually, come to think of it, that probably squelched the deal right there.
Sunday, August 27, 2006
I'm excited!
I've planned a little trip for the family in November. We're going to Williamsburg for four days. Unfortunately I'll have some business meetings the first two days we're there, but M. and Emma can play in the indoor pool at the hotel while I'm gone. They can plan Daddy and Emma activities. As long as I get to hit Duke of Glouchester street, stroll around my alma mater and hit the outlets, I'll be a happy camper. It should be a busy Autumn for us.
The truck is just my size!
Emma discovered the bed of the truck. She thinks it's a total hoot to run around in there and stick her head through the window.

This was Friday night after we had unloaded our cargo from our valley shopping excursion.

It's all about routines...
Now when the reach the fence at the end of the old road it's not sufficient to touch it. Emma must climb it. Even if it means unbuckling her from her stroller to do it.

Hillbilly Hot Tub
Daddy was inspired to send me to the junk room to find the "spa" for the bathtub. I don't think Emma could decide if she liked it or not. She was in and out of the water a lot.

More pool pictures
It was 69 degrees when she strong-armed her daddy into pulling the pool out of the shed. It takes about 7 trips with a 2-gallon pot full of hot water from the bathtub before the water is just right, and by just right I mean bathtub warm. This child will be in for a shock when she encounters a real pool with real water temperatures. The game today was 1, 2, 3, JUMP!

Why I watch professional golf
When Tiger Woods fires one off the tee and it sails like a bird right onto the wrong fairway, I can say "I can do that."

When Phil Mickelson tops his chip shot and it skulls across the green like a bat out of hell, I can say "I can do that."

When Sergio Garcia has a three foot putt and the ball circles 3/4 of the way around the top of the cup and fails to fall in, I can say "I feel your pain, Brutha!"