Thursday, December 31, 2009

Off to a Typical Start

I am that most brilliant of women, the kind who knows just how to spend a winter afternoon when all four of her kids are at the movies, and she and her husband have the house alone to themselves for the first time in 96 hours.

You guessed it: I'm writing a blog post while my man naps on the floor in front of the fire. After twenty-five years, we've figured out that the activities you had in mind can be squeezed in whenever we have ten minutes to kill, but an uninterrupted nap and a Facebook-free computer are rare gifts from the gods.

Besides, it's high time I worked on my NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS, a phrase I like to capitalize so that when It all goes down in flames it's that much more a spectacular failure.

I mean, SPECTACULAR FAILURE. See? Those caps really validate things.

At first I thought I'd just revisit my resolutions from last year to see how well I navigated the waters of 2009. But honestly, what's the point? I'm sure I did just fine, considering that one of my resolutions was not to be nominated as a candidate for the Vice-presidency.

Familiar with my position on teen pregnancy or a federal bailout for the struggling polar bear jerky industry? Tina Fey making bank on the way I say "you betcha"?

All righty then, consider that one Resolved.

Besides, 2010 is a New Year, full of all sorts of new ways to justify not changing anything. The world is doing enough of that for all of us. When the rest of the planet hops aboard that hand-basket, someone's got to stick around to water the lawns. Maybe then I can finally get caught up on my "Law and Order: SVU" reruns.

However, I do subscribe to the philosophy that "the unexamined life is not worth blogging about" (Socrates would have said it that way if he'd had any idea) and as such I offer for your consideration a few items I devoutly resolve real thought to later tonight in the tub.

1: I resolve not to marry any professional athletes named for animals and building materials. I'm sorry, "Wombat" Styrofoam and "Three-toed Sloth" Concrete, it's over between us. I now realize that no matter how perky and photogenic and breathtakingly Swedish I remain, you will always fall victim to the fact that the tools and terms of your sport lend themselves to a thousand naughty jokes.
I understand; no one could swim against the tide of a punch line that practically writes itself. Just take your 'woods' and your 'holes-in-one' and be happy in the life you have chosen.
(Come back when you're done commenting and watch this!)
2: I resolve not to star in any reality television shows that highlight my skills as a mother, a model, a chef, or a tattoo artist. Considering my limited abilities in all of those areas, I'd wind up botoxing a skull and crossbones into my kids' foreheads and baking them at 350 degrees until they developed an eating disorder.
Knowing that this would still make me a better parent than Jon and Kate is of only marginal comfort.
3: I resolve not to have my gall bladder removed in 2010.
Now, you'd think that having had it removed a couple of months ago would guarantee success with this particular resolution. But I have yet to undergo a medical procedure without at least twelve people sharing with me their "Terrible Tales of (Medical Procedure in Question) Gone Wrong".
"...and there was a SHADOW gall bladder behind the first one, most likely left over from a parasitic twin that only developed a gall bladder before giving up and taking a job at Sea World Orlando."
I've met so many folks whose sister-in-law had her gall bladder removed and from then on could only paint watercolors with her feet, or lost her ability to do puzzles, or brayed like a mule whenever she smelled bacon, I honestly wonder how the species has survived under the bumbling care of incompetent surgeons.
So I don't care if the crazy organ grows back and has so many stones in it Mick Jagger has to take a number. It's staying in.
4: I resolve to maintain balance in the eco-universe by purchasing eight Happy Earth reusable grocery bags from Albertson's and then leaving them home every time I shop.
5: I resolve to finally figure out how to add to my sidebar the little "award buttons" I have so generously been offered by fellow bloggers. The only reason I got the MMB one and the NaNo one on there is they came with instructions written for a three-year old garbanzo bean, complete with illustrations and an 800 number for tech support.
Jenny Mac, Debbie, and all of you other kind souls who have seen fit to recognize the dubious contribution this blog makes to the betterment of humanity, please accept my gratitude as well as my plea for any lifeline that could rescue me from 1987, where, apparently, I still live.
6: I resolve to launch an expedition to the Mysterious Land of the Creators of Word Verification Words. Whereupon I will hold a live grenade in one hand, and a list of questions in the other, starting with, "Why is it that some WVs are simple, like "jaja", while others look like the chemical formula for reproducing the Big Bang ("CoHydLungAaughToHellWithIt")
7: I resolve to get my money's worth from my lap band by treating it like a freshman pledging to a fat, hostile fraternity.
"Think you've got what it takes to make ME skinny? Well, let's see how well you stack up to...Mister Ham and Cheese Omelet!! Swallow! Swallow! Swallow!"
8: I resolve to once and for all answer the question, "If you avoid dusting for so long that Hobbits move into your piano, can you get a tax break for providing public housing?"
9: I resolve not to giggle too loudly when young mothers in my circle start sentences with the words, "My kids will never..."
And girls, be warned: The Fates hear you saying those things, and they reconstruct reality for the express purpose of turning your child into the kind of person who, in fact, sets the BAR for whatever it is you have just declared your kid "will never".
I'm certain Jeffrey Dahmer's mother often told her friends, "My kid will never get into frozen entrées. He's all about freshness."
10: I resolve to continue my campaign against hyper-apostrophization in all printed materials. Apostrophe's wher'e they' dont be'long a're 'a' bl'ight on' th'e lit'er'ary land'scape a'nd mus't b'e' stop'ped, wh'ate'ver t'he c'os't.

11: I resolve to celebrate 25 years of marriage to the most patient guy in the world, and 23 years of parenting the luckiest four kids ever to ask for the keys to my car. I resolve to remain the poster-grownup for teaching old dogs older tricks as I continue this new and unexpected journey toward professional authorship. Mostly, I resolve to just keep plugging along, taking the hard stuff as it comes (I miss you, Dad) and rejoicing in the little moments of grace that remind us we are never really alone.
I mean that, capital letters and all.


Lara said...

#4 I already have down pat. And I don't even know where my happy earth bags are anymore I've left them home so often. Plus, I feel so guilty every time I come home with 350 plastic bags....

Happy New Year!

Mallory said...

I love your list! And just because I've never done this before...

WV: winerge. 1. The urge to drink. OR 2. The urge to complain about everything under the sun. I feel like a loser. I resolve to never give a definition to or pay any attention whatsoever to word verifications that I may come across.

(Which doesn't work. I completely ignored that I have to type in "winerge" and now I have to type "quillyc" if I am going to actually post this comment.)

Kristina P. said...

It makes me happy that you are somehow achieving my 2009 resolution of destroying the earth, by not using the reusable bags.

I resolve not to marry a celebrity named after a bathroom, with 8 children.

Happy New Year, my friend! Hope to see you soon in 2010!

M-Cat said...

I am peeing my self over the Jeffrey Dahmer comment!

Happy New Year!

Melanie J said...

The trick is keeping your earth bags in the trunk of your eco-stomping Yukon, btw.

I want you to know that your blog posts are ALWAYS a highlight of my day. How do you do that?

L.T. Elliot said...

I laughed so many times in this post, I'm thoroughly embarrassed for my couch. =]

Oh, to be half so witty as you. Perhaps that will be MY resolution!

(p.s. Tiger's written notes were frickin' hilarious. Oops. Apostrophe slander.)

tammy said...

First of all, I'm glad you've got your priorities straight.

Re: #4, get the bags from Harmon's. They have cuter colors and will therefore look really cute wherever you forget to use them.

Happy New Year!!

The Garden of Egan said...

Happy New Year to you DeNae! Thanks for the laughs, I look forward to seeing your miserable failure in keeping...or breaking your resolutions. I just know you are gonna go off and marry Gold-teeth Atta Hunk.

Amber Lynae said...

I have a problem with remembering my reusable bags as well.

I love your resolutions.

Hel said...

I have never understood women who say "my children will never..." I'm only a new mum and even I realise how dangerous those words are.

That's why I take to challenging the universe with my reverse pyschology - "My next child is going to be a devil child". What are you going to do with that one universe??!!

Happy New Year!

phriv - a person who is frivolous in name only.

Julie said...

Oh, Jeffrey Dahmer and the frozen entrees. That one will be my lifeline on the days when my kids do all of the things I said that they would never do.

Once, before I had children and was therefore a wise woman and exceptional parent, I actually uttered the words that anyone who kept permanent markers in a house that also contained children was just asking for it.

Yep. A few years later I had markers, kids AND redecorated walls.

I learn my lessons the hard way.

okierivermama said...

My 5 y/o who was then 3 managed to write on my living room wall with a permanent blue marker @ about 5 foot this day have not figured out how he got it that high or that blue standing RIGHT behind my back*2 inches* ...this was also the child that climbed to the top of the fridge with no visible steps and ate half a box of fundraiser candy bars before being

Becca said...

Denae. For some reason, your blog likes to block my comments. Even though I am not evil. But I wanted to tell you that your blog has made my LIFE the entire month of December. Perfect resolutions. I adore you.

That Gal Kiki said...

Well said and written!!! Happy New Year, sister. So happy we found each other here! :)

Becca said...

You? Very funny. Me? Very, very glad I found you. Happy 2010.

(WV = "defor" as in so deformed that it's not even completely formed)

Boomer Pie said...

Socrates would be laughing in his grave...if he had a sense of humor. I'm enjoying yours. I just joined your site. Drop by my place for a Margarita and a couple chuckles. time.

Sher said...

I have full faith in your that you can do it this year! You are such a motivated person to resolve to have such lofty goals!
I may just have to follow in your footsteps.

Karen said...

Good luck with your resolutions. Some of those might be harder to keep than they sound! :-)

Hope 2010 is a good one for you and yours!

Karen said...

PS: I don't really know why I said "you and yours" since I never use that expression and don't even really like it. Anyway, hope it's a good one!

Annette Lyon said...

I have way to many posts to read, but I just HAD to read yours--I knew it would make me giggle and snort. Brought my husband over to read it too.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

hee hee hee I LUB YOU SO MUCH! You are such a crack up.

And AMEN to the capitalizing.

So, I've been absent and uncommunicative and tonight is the first night I've read blogs in weeks. My apologies. I still adore you and appreciate you and wonder about you. Especially about your novel. How is it coming along? It's probably not a novel as much as a book of essays right? You should just print this blog up and send it to a publisher.

How many words have you got under your (lap) belt? ba dum bum

Ain't it funny how you resolved to start writing seriously and then you get your gall bladder out. Don't let the universe try and stop you from becoming the next Erma Bombeck (even if that gall bladder grows back!)

Thanks for the laugh every day in my comment box. You are so heeheelarious!

And your verifier is a deep thinker. ighsongr

It's like a swedish song sandwich. Weird. I hope it doesn't get eaten by a tiger in the woods.

ba dum bum.

(it's late).

JennyMac said...

Wombat Styrofoam...HAHAHAHA..I can't believe you just broke up with him on your blog.

Happy New Year DeNae!

Jessica said...

I resolve to quit tempting fate. My life is getting hard enough without the universe against me.

Happy 2010! I think your resolutions have given me hope and inspiration to write my own soon.

Beeswax said...

I resolve to come back and visit you sometime. You funny.

The Wiser Side said...

Well I think only the coolest people ever had gall bladder surgery in 2009 (mine was removed 3 days after kidney stone surgery-I seriously thought the ER doc was playing a practical joke on me).
And here again is one of those odd WV. Sorry if I comment twice cause I can't spell the odd thing right

wendy said...

great resolutions
and the comments about Jeffrey Dahmer ---had me peeing my pants.

AllisonK said...

Some of the best resolutions I've ever read!!! You have a gift!

Kayla said...

10 minutes? is that all it takes? weird.