Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Nose Mining, A Family Legacy

It was bedtime. In fact, it was past bedtime--9:25. The Little One (we'll call "LO", the 20 month old) and The Middle One (our 1st grader, we'll call "MO") were upstairs in their freshly fluffed bedroom of pink & lavender floweryness. It was quiet up there except for the Lion King playing in the background at a moderate level. I was winding up a quick chat online with Ricky, who will be flying back from Austin today, when the Little One shredded the calm with a Brillo-Pad to the teeth shriek of pain. The Big One (we'll call "BO", our 8th grader) and I startle and soon, the three of us were the Marx Brothers around The Little One.

"She keeps jamming her finger in her nose! Mommy, I think she put a green bead up there! I think I saw one on the floor and now it's not there anymore." The Middle One reports.


The Little One continues to squall and like freight train cars, the girls follow me to my bedroom where I try to investigate.

Sure enough, waaaay up the left nostril the faceted green bead glints. It's too far to reach and she's sniffing UP in between yowls. The Big One tries to console her, The Middle One begins trying to reason with her, "Don't sniff!! Don't sniff!! You're gonna make it go into the top of yer head!"

"Honey, she doesn't understand--it's ok, we'll get it out." I interject. The Little One darts her pointy finger all around trying to get it up her nose while I do my best to block. My mind's rolodexing solutions. The nose syringe? Can't locate, won't work. Press the side of her nose, work it down? WOW! No, ok, that's hurting her. Hey, okay, blow in one nose hole, cover her mouth! Yeah, do that. Doh! More screaming nothing budged. Don't cry, the kids are watching.

"Okay Guys, we have to get her to the doctor, Mom can't get it out. Hey, BO, grab her a pair of pants, hurry--and MO, get some clothes on, K? OH, GAWD! She's really poopy! Hey, BO grab me a diaper too, I have the wipes." Everyone steps to it. The baby starts to calm down. Good. We load up into the van and make quick tracks to the ER. I call Ricky and give him the heads up and put him to the task of calling the ER to let them know I'm en route (thing is, I'm also a little worried she'll snort the bead to the top of her head).

Two thumbs up for the ER. We were in within minutes. Three grown people restrained LO. The doctor, a woman in her 30's, went up after it with long tweezers. If you didn't know better you'd think a Pterodactylus was being slaughtered in there. No dice.

Next, suction. Nothing but snot and all the screams of outrage LO could muster.

The doctor abandoned the suction as quickly as she'd snatched it down and went back for the tweezers, stretched LO's little nose hole a little and went after it. It grabbed, bead slipped. The girls and I winced in unison at the tiny crunch sound of the bead escaping the tweezer's pinch. Crunch. Again. It grabbed, pullllllll-crunch.

In again. Little snap.

Another dive. She's got it, she's got it, she's got it---pullllll

Ploomp! The green offender glistened innocently in the mouth of the tweezers. A little bloody nose and LO--well, she was very offended by it all.

I claim full responsibility for the nose mining DNA contribution. I was a gravel up the nose kid.

What's ever been in your nose?

Thursday, March 23, 2006


I like my dentist. In fact, she and I pass infectious snickering between us throughout treatment. No "laughing gas" required. So, yesterday I'm in for a little cosmetic touching up on my front four choppers--stuff maybe only I notice but all the same, I was in the chair.

She tucks cotton tubes between my gums and upper lip. I'm compelled to ask for a mirror already, but resist.

"So, you wanna grill?" she asks.

Now, even more attractive that just me with my upper chomp fully exposed, is me trying to suspend my snort-riddled laugh at the acid image of Flava Flav that blipped onto my mental screen.

The kerosene on the giggle fire was Dr. K whose face, even with a surgical mask and safety glasses, was clearly pinching up and laughing as hard as I was, hovering 12 inches above me.

She so crazy.

After it's all over with she offers me the hand mirror saying she really thinks it looks great. I tell her, "Okay, but it feels like Fire Marshall Bill or The Mask ala Jim Carrey." We were probably both hoping I wouldn't be startled when I looked in the mirror.

Nice. Subtle. Lovely.

A collective exhale.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006


I normally like to sketch something thoughtful or even up-lifting here at the old blog-o-rama but today, boys and girls, we're going to hear about a special kind of depravity. Now, let me just disclaim first that I'm a little FEROCIOUS about mixing kids and strip clubs. I know, lighten up, right?

I'd link to this for you but someday the link might not be available so, for your browser ease, I'll clip it:

Dad Arrested After Toddler Wanders Into Strip Club
Boy Claimed Dad Said Monsters Would Eat Him

TULSA, Okla. -- A Kansas man was arrested at a Tulsa strip club after police said his toddler son was left in a cold car and found wandering into the club.
Christopher Greg Killion, 31, of Sabetha, Kan., was arrested Saturday on a complaint of "encouraging a minor child to be in need of supervision." He posted $500 bond and was released from jail.
The boy told police that his father told him to stay in the car, and that if he left it, "monsters would eat him."
A manager at the club had called police to report that about 30 minutes after Killion entered the club, a 3- to 4-year-old boy came inside looking for his father.

Officers determined that the boy had been left alone in a car in the strip club's parking lot.
The car was unlocked and parked about 20 feet from a four-lane street. It was raining and 45 degrees outside at the time.

Where are some hungry monsters when you really need 'em? Say, when Depravity Boy walks out of the cop-shop after posting his pesky $500 bond?

Monday, March 13, 2006

My People

In one weekend I spent hours enjoying some of my favorite people. People I'm proud of. People I love and call my own. My people.

This weekend, wow. How often do I connect with the best of them? Lingering hugs, arms all the way around the other, close your eyes and breath hugs. Hugs that whisper, "I've missed your face, Friend." And for no special reason, no event, no particular celebration, for no loss.

LiBA and her beautiful mother who love like no others, Miss L. the ultim-o-hostess, Markus Arelius & Mini-Me (both cellularly), Phoebe and her adoring prince, Billard back-stage at The Grecian, and my precious Roxanne, with whom I spent much time Sunday afternoon chatting with fireside over latte in the foreground of musicians who filled the luxurious cafe air with audile cream.

Each day was infused with snug squeezes with the Cherub-bean, and finally, draped across and contentedly so with my adoring "Ricky", a Diet Pepsi, and the remote control.

Speaking of the Cherub-bean, it sounds like she's awake--sounding off with her newest practical skill, blowing raspberries on her chubby forearm.

Over n' out.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Mystery Subject

So, I dig out a writing project I've been keeping a file on since 1999. I began more serious work on it again yesterday and I'm riveted--pulling down dialogue, choosing words like a prize-winner on a shopping spree at the Mall of the World.

Writer's High. That's what it was. If you've ever had it, you know just what I'm talking about and you'll chase it, catch it, and lose it again on a continuous cycle--forever. If you've never had it, it's what I would classify as a bonafied "peak experience". If you're not a word junkie and can't imagine why or how anyone could or would chase it (or that it's a real phenomenon), I understand. I've never had Runner's High for exactly the same list of reasons.

While shuffling through my "shitty first drafts" (By the way, that's a technical term as well as a chapter title in the best ever book for writers, "Bird By Bird" by Anne LaMott, thanks again J for turning me on to it so many years ago.) I happened upon a "just put your ass in the chair and write anything" sort of entry on a printed page. It had nothing to do with the project, it was just sharing a page with something else that did.

Anya, circa July 4, 2000:

"My friends have changed. And, I guess I have too. One in particular, and drastically. It's odd. It makes me feel like--how it might feel waking up on the subway next to the stranger you have always been on the same redline car with every Monday through Friday evening between 5:47 and 5:54 p.m. for the past three years. A twisted, blip of confused moments-- suddenly realizing you've been asleep, that your'not in your own home, that you're looking at someone you've consciously known--by face alone. A person you've never heard utter a word, not so much as a sneeze--jerking back into consciousness, almost falling to the floor snapping out of the narcoleptic fit. That's what happened to a guy I know. Now let me go on and start this play I've got to write."

Now. How can I not remember who in the WORLD I was talking about? It was so cryptic, yet specific and I can't snatch the memory file from my thinker.

If you're reading this, and you're the person I was talking about, remind me, eh?

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Does It Really . . . Matter?

We're each more powerful than we very often realize. Events in history--yes, history--are changed by our slightest word, action, or inaction each moment. Nothing we decide to do or elect not to do fails to change the world. Nothing is small.

Words and deeds broadcast around the world, or known to an audience of one, can change the course of worlds within the World. My antennae are extended for those kernals of inspiration, which some might say allow me to make an entire event of 20 seconds of time. Here I go again.

The other night, Reece repeated something she'd heard and held as profound, passing it on to the rest of us who were listening. She said, "I'm just trying to matter." and she hoped her work would be a testament to her efforts to do so.

Sometimes very publicly, or behind closed doors, and even quietly anonymous . . . I too have always aspired.

The question is, "What will I do today?"

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

The "O" Office or Chocolate Diplomacy

Imagine the next presidency: Hillary Clinton and Oprah Winfrey on the same ticket. Now, whether you like Hillary or whether you don't, whether you appreciate Oprah or think she's a cult leader, I think this would be electric. Imagine the cabinet, the supreme court justice appointments, the legislation, the VETO's. Imagine Nate Berkus getting his hands on the White House.

The Middle One's first grade teacher assigned a little project last week. They traced their silhouettes onto black paper and beneath, on ruled writing paper, they wrote their own presidential platforms. Here's what the Middle One wrote:

I would do many things if I could be the President.
First, I would end the school day earlier.
Next, I would give chocolate to the world.
This is what I would do if I became the President.

I think she might have something with the chocolate thing. In fact, I may send a copy on to Hillary.