9/9/09

Shiny Rock Syndrome

A few days ago I described my case of Shiny Rock Syndrome, the opposite of OCD. It was such a poignant article that BlogHer even advertised it. Educating the public about this illness is the first step in finding a cure. Millions of people are suffering from this sickness right now! As an illustration of my life as an SRS victim, here is how my day went:
1. Pour a cup of coffee, go to get the cream
2. Notice there is a plate of old leftovers to be thrown away
3. At trashcan, notice all the dishes from yesterday filling the sink, clean one and open the dishwasher, which is full. Stop. Remember the cup of coffee, get the cream
4. Shop online for new used cars
5. Get distracted by some advertisement for airline flights
6. Begin budgeting for my family trip cross country in New Zealand-I have miles enough to buy TWO tickets already!! And the price of a motor coach hire is only $1500/week!
7. Remember my children's book idea from yesterday-open a Word page and begin writing my book about Sam's affinity for sweets
8. Answer the phone
9. Begin the mountain of dishes in my sink
10. Pick up Shelby from kindergarten, go to the bank
11. Finish writing my book
12. Call my sister to tell her about my book
13. Color with the girls, and draft what my character, Sam, might look like
14. Write a letter to a publishing house
15. Call my mom, I'm really excited about this book
16. Edit the book
17. Make dinner
18. Bathe the kids while editing the book
19. Burn the mac and cheese I forgot about on the stove
20. Make more dinner
21. Get kids out of bath but leave them naked, get distracted by recent emails
22. Clean up Ana's pee on the floor, dress girls in pajamas

This is a life of distraction and little efficiency. Please, help stop SRS. Call or send your donation to Cultured Nativity, 1234 Besting Way, Shell Beach, California, 1-800-STOP-SRS

9/7/09

A Cup of Crack

My family had been invited to the "Playhouse Follies" last night to watch Mimi tap dance alongside various other magicians, comedians, ballerinas, singers and skit performances. Sort of like a circus on stage. Since my husband had suddenly developed worker's syndrome, leaving our "family night" less one member, I struggled with the idea of managing two kids (again) for a public outing. And then, just as soon as my anxiety appeared, I was slammed into a phone booth and transformed into Super MOM!!!! Slinky red cape and all.
"Well my dearies," Super Mom proclaimed, "Looks like we're having a 'Girls' Date Night'! Let's get pretty because Daddy's going to buy us dinner before the show!!"
That's right, I decided to take both my daughter's out for a civilized meal in a public place....alone. With my trusty cape, a pair of tight denim slacks and some cashmere, I bathed and dressed my children and headed out in search of a fine dining experience where this Super Mom could order a stiff drink and enjoy herself despite the absence of her untrusty sidekick. We found ourselves seated in the near empty patio area of Robin's, in Cambria. Apparently, the secret to dining success is being an early bird. Two other families arrived shortly after, each with one entertaining toddler, and were seated well within the scope of visual distraction. PERFECT.
I ordered the Lamb Shank for me and a Cosmo, the girls split the Kid's Chicken with vegetables. There was a smattering of "Pleases" and "Thank Yous", frequent use of napkins AND forks. There was even a fairly pleasant bathroom experience which involved one toddler on the toilet while the other sat quietly alone at the table and Super Mom hovered in the 6 foot distance between the two.
How could this be? How could I have pulled this off? Something has to go wrong. And so, we raised our cups and proposed a toast to Daddy's generosity, "Thanks for dinner, Daddy" we said. And the sound of kid cups clinked against my martini glass.
As we made our exit, I'm certain my platforms never touched the ground, as I led my perfect angels out of the restaurant.
Lady Luck continued on our ride to the coffee shop where I promised giant cookies -even Super Mom stoops to bribery. The half dazed high school student greeted us at the door with, "I hope you only want drip coffee." I could see why this place was empty.
"Well, okay," Super Mom replied, "Do you have any giant cookies for my accompanying angels? And yes, I will have a cup of coffee, DECAFFEINATED, please." It was 7 and this Super Mom needed her rest tonight.
The pierced and disinterested barista turned a lazy circle and reappeared with a Styrofoam cup of joe and two giant chocolate cookies.
I raised the cup to my lips and was met with an icy cold liquid. "Um, this is the coldest cup of coffee I have ever had," said Super Mom.
He vaguely hid his annoyance while snatching the cup out of my hand (I could crush you with one squeeze of my Super Grip, kid). And with his back turned, he said, "Oh, that's right, you wanted decaf, right? I happen to have some freshly brewed right here."
Somewhere off in the distance an evil cackle filled the air and I swear I caught a glimpse of horns protruding from his greasy head of hair as he handed me the steaming cup of coffee. Super mom grabbed her angels and made for the door.
Lady Luck was by our side as we found our seats at the Follies, and the girls stood riveted by every act, even the bad ones. They laughed and sang along, they even pleaded to return after the intermission, even though Super Mom encouraged an early end to our perfect evening. At 9:30 we arrived home safely, both angels sound asleep in their seats. What have I done to deserve this?!
John pulled into the driveway in time to help deliver our perfect, sleeping children to their beds. And before long, our little house was dark and quiet. It's really quiet in here. I changed positions in bed to stare at the ceiling. I tried my usual calming methods from yoga but my Super Brain would not turn off. I calculated house payments, college tuition, ages of family members in 7 years. I made grocery lists. I got up to scribble some ideas on the chalkboard. I returned to my uninviting bed. I tossed some more. I contemplated getting up to do a few loads of laundry, or maybe even reorganize that junk drawer in the kitchen. What the hell is wring with me? The clock read 11:57.
And suddenly, Super Mom made her most brilliant discovery. I sat bolt upright in bed, my heart racing, my finger pointed towards the sky, "THAT LITTLE F*$!ER SOLD ME CUP OF CAFFEINATED COFFEE!!!!!! AAAUUUUUGGHHHHHH!!!""
Rats, foiled again.