Friday, April 23, 2010

The camera never lies--unfortunately

Blogs are interesting things, ya know? They allow glimpses into lives we'll never live, into insights we might never have, into experiences we'll never fully share. I love that--mainly because it reassures me that I'm not the only one wandering around pushing on the "pull" doors all alone.

But here's the thing: the glimpses are carefully edited. Rare is the writer who puts it all into view and says, "Here it is, folks. Complete and uncensored!" Which is kind of a relief, both for the writer--because a little mystery makes a gal feel fabulous, and for the readers--who don't need to know exactly how the kidney stone felt as it scraped its way down the urinary tract. That's the role rightly filled by Aunt Myrtle at the family reunion, not bloggers.

But, in the interest of semi-full disclosure, I will allow a more-candid-than-normal peep into the glamorous but unpretentious life that is mine.

Ready? Got your glam glasses on? Are you prepared for the swankiness that I live daily? Don't say I didn't warn you!

This, my blog-perusing friends, is the perfect visual metaphor for my existence: a poorly-shot photo of the laundry line on my back porch. I told you it wasn't all Martinelli's on yachts and soirees in Paris here in blogland. Now prepare yourself for the one thousand words the picture was supposed to spare you.

Things you never would have known about me if you hadn't seen this blog today:

  • I am cheap. Really cheap. So cheap that when the dryer broke in January I declared it a non-necessary luxury item and chose not to replace it. Now, my lucky neighbors get a close-up view of the ever-changing art installation I like to call "Ephemeral Cleansings: a journey into the evanescence of a mother's work".
  • I am so cheap that when we replaced the back door of our house after 27 years of devoted protection from elements and bad guys, I determined it to be the perfect future gate to our vegetable garden. Every garden should have a bright blue portal, no? If only my husband agreed.
  • I have multiple jeans-wearing children. Children who will not be pried out of their jeans, even when said jeans are developing stress fractures in strategic regions. Even when those fraying denims are two sizes too large and falling from their non-existent hips or three sizes too small and showing inappropriate lengths of calf.
  • Also, one of those children has the courage to wear brightly green jeans. Thank heavens the child in question is the female of the bunch.
  • I love my backyard trees so much I am loathe to prune them, even when they start encroaching on my work space. It isn't logical--especially in the height of summer when I have to dodge potentially eye-gouging twigs with every article I hang, but the alternative seems like sacrilege, especially in a place where every tree is a leafy miracle.
  • We have waaaaaaay too many chests of drawers in and out of the house. Last count: 12. In various colors. And that's after giving some away. They are my storage system of choice. They store everything from extra sheets to hole punches around here. Some day I will achieve chest-of-drawer paradise: a workshop completely lined with drawers, with a big work table set on top of drawers in the middle. When that day arrives I will weep. And then I will immediately get hot glue all over everything.
  • I am apparently too busy to paint the porch. That's the gentle, face-saving fib I tell myself every day.
  • This lady is cool enough to cover tables with contact paper. The kids don't mind and the pigeons seem to approve.
  • Apparently, I have a subconscious desire to moon my long-suffering neighbors, but since I know that would be wrong--also potentially psychosis inducing (for the neighbors)--I allow my laundry to do it for me.

Don't you wish you were me? And aren't you glad you don't live next door?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Dim the lights, raise the curtain

At some place on this blog I must have stated the case for me keeping my big flapping mouth shut. Now I wish I had labored less diligently on my sentence construction, and had heeded my own advice slightly more wholly. Because, friends, I am stuck in the mud pit of my own making for sure this time.

As always, a disclaimer is in order:
I am not a personal horn-tooter. The role of making me sound better than I am falls to my loving husband, who does so heroically. My job, as I see it, is to do what needs to be done--as well as possible--and then get onto the next task. Is that so wrong?

Somehow, though, this time I sort of volunteered myself--after being asked to do so, mind you!--onto the biggest, most ulcer-producing project of my soon-to-be-extremely short life: the Stake Anniversary Pageant. Oh. Dear. Goodness. And Calgon, take me away!

Forget what you think you know about pageants--there will be no tiaras. Sashes will be kept to a bare minimum, and will be tied solely around waists. The talent portion will consists of pre-memorized lines, delivered to an audience which I pray will consist of more than theater-loving crickets. It's somewhere in the wasteland between really hopeful home-grown theatrical and heart-felt tableaux vivants. And I have landed smack in the middle of it, right up to the hair on my chinny-chin-chin. (Mostly kept unnoticeable by steady applications of Nair and tweezers.)

You see--and I am loathe to toot this particular horn--I seem to be in a directorial position here. I, the woman who has never directed more than a single roadshow. Who managed to graduate from university in a theater-related field only because she was too afraid to fail. Whose biggest stage triumph to date was as "popcorn" in the annual dance recital--and even then I forgot to put on my toe shoes!

I am so doomed.

But, the show must go on. I think. Most people assume.

Auditions start tonight.

This can only end in tears.