No comment, part whatever

My mom asked me why nobody comments on my blog but her. The only answers I could think of made me feel bad (my writing doesn't connect with people, nobody likes me, etc.). That's one thing I don't like about blogging. I don't do it for the comments, but the lack of comments can be discouraging.

The main reason I keep this blog going is because it makes me write out things I wouldn't otherwise write, and for a writer, that's important. I've always kept a personal diary, but because it's so personal, there's both total freedom and no accountability. That has a place, but it doesn't really challenge or discipline me as a writer.

So, even having a small audience here means I write in a more structured and constructive way, and I consider many of my posts to be great writing exercises. I think some of the stuff I've written here ends up being better than stuff I've written for actual writing classes. If not for the small, passive, often lurking audience on my blog, I'd have never written it, because I haven't got a lot of time to take classes anymore.

Sure, there are other reasons for this blog. Occasional updates for the friends I know read it--these are mostly friends I once saw in everyday life or talked to a lot on the phone, but because of life getting in the way, we aren't in close enough contact anymore. It's also a historical record, because I do love keeping track of things so I can look back and reminisce about what I was thinking at a particular day or time. And when I do get comments, it's fun to see something you've written resonate with people.

Mostly, though, this blog is for me to keep writing, even when it's little random thoughts like this: Moms are great, because of all the many and sundry ways they support you. Tutu's one of the best. Especially because I think she likes my writing and thinks everyone should be commenting as often as she does. Even if only to be nice.

But I don't mind--really! This isn't a post fishing for comments. It's exactly what I said above: a reason to keep writing, a little more formally than I would in my journal, and, in fact, it's a perfect example. I started writing it two days ago, but abandoned it twice thinking it wasn't finished. This morning, I finally forced myself to bring it to some sort of completion, as if I had to print it out before I left for writing class. Finish it, even if it's not perfect.

So comment if you wish, or don't. I will keep writing, which is really what matters most to writers.


Father's Day outing

Father's Day outing
Originally uploaded by generaltsao.

I drove Nick down to Saratoga this weekend on a surprise outing to go shooting with his friend. I'm not into guns, but this seemed like a really cool Father's Day gift for any guy. I think he enjoyed it.

Is it totally sexist that I think of this as a "guy" thing? Nick really wanted me to join them, but Alex wasn't allowed on the range. I have to say I was a little relieved to have a very good excuse for not joining in the firearm fest. I think I'll do it someday, but I have to be ready. Guns scare me!


What Not to Wear Candidate

Yesterday, as I walked out of the house, I asked both my mom and Nick to assess my outfit. They know I've been having trouble finding clothes that look right lately, clothes that fit both my post-pregnancy body and my new station as a working mom breastfeeding an infant. So perhaps they were inclined to be generous. Both gave me the thumbs-up. Maybe it was an absent-minded thumbs-up, but it was a thumbs-up nonetheless. I moved forward.

When we were out, I found myself fidgeting and feeling uncomfortable. Even though I'm reaching the 9-months-out point of post-partum, I'm still not at my pre-pregnancy weight, so while certain pre-preg clothes fit, they still don't fit right. The skirt I had on was a perfect example--just a tad too tight in certain places, which made it fall all wrong. After catching sight of myself in one too many mirrors, I told my mom I was getting rid of the skirt when I got home. Even if it started to fit me again, I'd decided it wasn't all that cute to begin with.

"I think that's a very good idea," she said, perhaps a little too eager to agree with me. I found myself wondering why she was so vehement.

"What?" I asked.

"Well, when you asked me this morning if you thought that outfit looked OK, I guess I didn't really look," she admitted. "And then today, when I saw you in the store, I thought you could almost pass for, you know, one of the little people."

Now, my mom has always done a great job making me see the positive side of being petite (as she's always made sure to call me). In this rare moment of non-sugar-coated honesty, it was all I could do to keep from ripping the skirt off and throwing it away, right then and there in the Ikea parking lot.

Today, I was extra careful getting dressed. I thought of Trinny and Susannah, lengthening the torso, elooooooongating the legs. I picked out a pair of pre-pregnancy capri pants and a sweater vest-shirt combo I got right before returning to work in December. I slipped on my clogs and headed to the kitchen to make coffee, feeling happy to have found something that looked decent, felt comfortable, and would allow for discreet nursing and easy baby-wrangling.

Nick was already at the kitchen table.

"Hi!" he said, enthusiastically. A little too enthusiastically, if you know what I mean. (He could barely contain his laughter.)

"What's so funny?" I asked.

"Hi little Dutch boy!" he said.

"What are you talking about?"

"Want a little cap? It would go perfectly with your cute little knickers and your clogs!" He was rather pleased with himself. I simply carried on making my coffee. There was really nothing I could say.

I'm still wearing the ensemble. I'm actually afraid to change into something else. With my track record, I might make the situation worse. If anyone wants to nominate me for What Not to Wear, I promise I won't be offended.


This weekend: quick hits

Nick and I went to see Arcade Fire at the Greek Theatre on Friday night. I loved that they have a violin and a viola onstage. Tutu babysat and Alex manipulated her into getting her to pick him up after he'd gone to bed. He did this with Nick's mom as well. It's funny to see him work his charm on the grandmothers. As soon as we get home, he goes right to bed, without an argument. He knows the jig is up.

Alex started crawling! I swear he was performing for the camera, as I happened to be taking a video as he took his very first steps. He's also started grabbing his spoon as I feed him and he'll try to feed himself, if not very successfully. It's great to watch the zeal with which he tries to aim the spoon into his mouth. Emphasis on "tries."

We had a majorly full house Saturday morning.
The plumber and his workmen arrived at 8:30 am to start work installing the sink in our little water closet. Then at 10, the handyman arrived to start patching the holes that the electricians left in the walls. Around 11, Mom and her friend dropped by to meet Alex. Then, our neighbors came by to talk about some house stuff. And while they were here, we had a video chat with Nick's mom, live via Skype from Brooklyn, where she was hanging out with my sis-in-law, her boyfriend, and their friend (who were all playing Big Brain Academy multiplayer on DS--gotta love the wireless multiplayer!). It was one of those "energy" moments when it seems like everything naturally happens at once, like when it's been quiet in your house for hours, then you get a phone call, and right at that moment, you get call waiting. Alex loved all the excitement. I had to remind myself to just let things happen and not worry about perfectly coordinating everything. Sometimes you just can't.

We went to Berkeley today to hang out with Sari in Rockridge.
Wow, what a yuppie parent haven that place is. Someone stopped me and said her son had a hemangioma in exactly the same place as Alex. So I got to see what it looked like on her (gorgeous :) son, now four years old. His mom said he'd requested to have it removed, and you could see a small, faint scar. His parents said his was originally much bigger than Alex's. Then she gave me her email and said if I ever had any questions she would be happy to tell me everything she has learned. Pretty cool!

I took a nap. Most people wouldn't bother writing this down, but I'm still waking up at night with the little babe, so a nap is pretty exciting news, and this nap was officially awesome. Thank you, Nick, for encouraging me to take the nap, and thank you, Alex, for taking your own nap at the time so I could really, legitimately sleep.

This evening, after watching the second-to-last Sopranos (my money, btw, is on Tony not getting offed next week), I edited the latest EGM Live*. It was really good! Sometimes when we have to tape it during our deadline week, everyone is so exhausted that it's too low-energy. But this week, I know I at least was beyond exhausted, so I was a little loopy, and a little loopiness can be good sometimes.