Monday Night Roundup

“Think as I think,” said a man ,
“Or you are abominably wicked;
you are a toad.”
And after I had thought of it,
I said, “I will, then, be a toad.”
— Stephen Crane, “Think As I Think”

I had a good weekend. I left work a little early Friday and came home and worked out, even though I usually take Fridays off. Didn’t do much that night, just watched a new episode of Friday Night Lights – that, if you don’t already know, is the best show on TV, and there are grumblings that NBC might not renew it for a third season, and to that I say: boo.

Saturday, I headed down to Richmond. Nate was going to take me out for my birthday, but he and Molly (my SIL) were both sick, so I took the kids to the Children’s Museum for an “extra-special day with Mel-Mel,” as the Princess called it. They had never been, and they had so much fun, if you don’t count the part where the Princess got whacked in the eye with a bucket by accident in the fossil digging sandbox. We took a tear-filled trip to First Aid and I had a minor aunt-freak out, worrying whether I should call Nate and if he’d be mad and if she needed to go to the hospital to get stitches and whether, if I didn’t take her to the hospital, she’d wind up scarred for life, literally. I decided it wasn’t that bad after all, and once we got back out there, she got distracted by all there was to do and soon enough, it was all forgotten. Whew.

I have to say, though, I don’t know how parents do it. I only had the two of them, and every 10 seconds I was sure I’d lost the Conductor forever because he was constantly running from one thing to another and I was trying to catch him but not lose sight of the Princess, and at the end of the day, I was exhausted, both from the running all over the place and the anxiety. Karen has four kids, so she does this on a bigger scale on a regular basis, and I think I would just die. My hat is off to you people and I am revising the number of kids I think I want downward.

We met Karen and baby Caroline for dinner at Friendly’s where we had possibly the worst service I’ve ever had at a restaurant, even considering that it was Friendly’s. I don’t stand for poor service – 40 minutes to get macaroni and cheese and hot dogs for the kids, without the waitress coming over once to check on us or let us know there was a hold up in the kitchen? Hell no. – so after speaking with the manager, who was an unprofessional mess, she agreed to take the kids’ meals off our tab. In the end, we actually only paid $10 for 4 meals, because she gave us our meals at half-price; a bargain to be sure, but it wasn’t worth the near melt-down of the Conductor who was so, so hungry (I had ordered their meals right away because I knew it was busy and I wanted to avoid just such a scene). The Princess was remarkably patient and well-behaved, and even leaned over to comfort the Conductor when he was crying. They’re such good kids. Conehead sundaes went a long way toward erasing the memory of waiting so long for dinner, and we all went home exhausted.

I hung out with the kids Sunday morning – they tag-teamed me and begged me to be “the Mel-Mel monster” or “the Kissing Monster” and we just generally goofed around. There is no place in the world that makes me happier than being with them. Things are just easy with them; I don’t worry about anything when I’m hanging out with the two of them. Would you like to see a picture of them? I thought you might:november-20070010.jpg

(Nate said it was ok for me to post their pictures “as long as they get famous,” whatever that means. I think he’s jealous of my site view stats.)

When I got home yesterday, it was just the usual Sunday stuff – laundry and cleaning and whatnot. I ordered The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford on pay-per-view because I’m an awards show junkie and I’m trying to watch as many Oscar-nominated performances as I can before the show on the 24th (and yay – the writers’ strike is over, so the show WILL go on!). I thought it was well done, and Casey Affleck deserved his nomination. Then I watched week 2 of In Treatment on HBO InDemand, and was as impressed as I was with week 1. It’s quite an interesting concept, and Gabriel Byrne may be older than dirt, but he’s still hot.

Oh, before I forget: Those of you in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, don’t forget to vote in the primary tomorrow! I’m not allowed to tell you who I’m voting for or campaign in any way for any candidate because of my job, but I do think it’s super-important to exercise your right to vote, so be sure to vote early and vote often. Oh, wait . . .

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