Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Old School, New School, Old Car, New Car

One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish.

Back to the Future, Forward to the Past

(Not one of my strongest subheads. Sahr.) Have you ever watched that PBS show "Frontier House"? I've watched some of it before, but this weekend, I had the opportunity to see the first episode, and it was pretty great. I realized that the mom from Tennessee came in behaving like a bitch, and that it really wasn't the strains of 1883 Montana that made her that way. The premiere episode really went beyond expectations, in that it featured a team of runaway horses, a washed-out road (making the wagon train grind to a halt), a dog attacking a child, and a woman complaining as she loaded a wagon, "Sure makes me miss my Land Rover." Tee hee.

But the best part of all was when Sweet William said, "Hey, how come they don't do a show called 'Ghetto House'?"

How fabulous would that be? Drop a few "all-American" families into the ghetto armed with nothing but 100 bucks in cash, a couple of sick kids, no health insurance, no jobs, and rent due on the one-bedroom apartment that eight of them have to share? Now, that would be entertainment.

The Velociraptor in My Home

Today, Viva wore cloth training pants to school. I dropped her off with an extra change of clothes, of course, and when I picked her up, she was wearing a different outfit, of course.

"How did she do?" I asked Miss Elsa, as she handed me a plastic bag. She made a sympathetic face. I looked at the bag.

"She pretty much peed all over everything, didn't she?" I said.

But no, this is actually incorrect. She peed in her pants once, made it to the potty once, and had one hell of an accident in the second pair of training pants. Unfortunately, because Miss Elsa was trying to get the rest of her little charges ready for naptime, she didn't have time to tell me about the second incident. It was over an hour later at home, after Viva had her pre-nap snack and we went to the potty, that I remembered to open the plastic bag and --

Sweet Jesus, what happened here?

Holy crap and excuse the pun, but Viva pooped in her training pants. Oh, wait, have I mentioned that I once again had dental work? So I'm standing there, with my jaw throbbing and yet numb at the same time, looking at a shit-stained pair of pink-flowered undies. I'm stunned.

Viva hardly ever poops in her pants. She is very particular about getting to the potty for this particular function. So that is surprising enough, but the truly stunning part is that I realize that I am somehow going have to get the shit off the pants. And the only way I can think of is to flush the toilet so I have a fresh bowl, and then swish the undies around in it.

Is your stomach churning, too? Have I mentioned that Viva starts at her new school next week, where they expect her to be pretty well toilet-trained? Ah.

At any rate, Viva watches me swish and flush, swish and flush, and then shrieks with disbelief as I remove the now poop-free undies from the toilet and toss them into some soap and water in a separate receptacle.

"I wash the training pants!" she screams, leaping up and grabbing them from the water. "I wash in the toilet!"

"Yuck, honey, no," I say, trying to grab them back. We tug-of-war for 2 seconds. I prevail. She loses her mind and starts shrieking like a velociraptor. I know I am prone to exaggerate, but I actually say to her, "Oh my GOD, what are you, a velociraptor?"

She runs into the living room screaming, realizes she has missed the "Goodbye Song" on Blue's Clues, and freaks out afresh. Try to imagine the sound a velociraptor might make when it realizes it has been bamboozled. Now multiply by a factor of five.

At this point, I have washed my hands of any residual poop-water and caught up to her. I grab her and hold her and talk to her calmly, explaining to her that washing poopy pants is something I want to do for her as part of the way I take care of her and that it's nice that she wants to help, but she can really just leave it to me. And also that this is a tape, and we can rewind so she can say "See ya later, sweet potato" to Joe. At this, she calms down, we rewind, she sings and dances with the song, and shortly thereafter is all snuggled in her sleeping bag taking a nap.

And me? Goddamn, I have the worst fucking headache ever.

Vehicular Woes, You Got to Go

Sweet William's Jeep is 11 years old and it's getting to that point where things are starting to go wrong with it and it's not seeming worth it to fix them. The really rough part of this is that his air conditioning is broke. And it's summer. And we live in L.A. And he has no covered parking at work. And so at the end of the day, his Jeep is, how do you say, an environment in which one could grow orchids. That is to say, like a greenhouse. Woe is him.

Added to that, my lease ends in October, so not only do we have to probably buy Sweet Willie a new car, but we have to decide whether to buy out the lease on my Passat or get me into a new car as well. Let me remind you that only one of us is working right now. D'oh!

However, we certainly have been having fun dreaming about the new cars we might get. Oh, yes. All is well in the Fantasy Nook at Chez Blah Blah. Come on in! Sit down! Have some Haagen-Dazs and beer! I promise they won't stick to your thighs! Or your waist! What's that you say? You seem to be leaning only toward German or Swedish-made automobiles? Not to worry -- with employee pricing, you can practically get two cars for the price of one! Who cares if they're more expensive to repair and maintain?

Hmm, my headache appears to have gotten worse.

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