Sunday, February 08, 2015

"Baby has a yellow shirt!"

One of my coworkers had her baby last week. A son, to go with her two-year-old daughter. It's her daughter that's been on my mind since the latest arrival.

Her daughter sounds very willful. As two year olds will be. The tales of her diva behavior have reliably amused me. My favorite: Recently she demanded egg yolks and cheese for every meal because "yellow is best."

It makes me sad to think of how being a big sister is necessarily going to impinge on her "center of the universe" outlook. At two, she couldn't possibly have understood what a sibling would mean, no matter how hard Mommy and Daddy tried to explain it.

And so I sent this doll to her. I figured if she had a baby of her own to care for, it would take some of the sting out of sharing Mommy and Daddy with that howling, yowling little blue bundle. 

Her mother tells me the doll was hitsville, even accompanying her to "Show and Share Friday," which is the biggest event on the weekly daycare center calendar. My eye for sartorial detail was not lost on her. Mommy reports that the first thing she said when handed the doll is, "Baby has a yellow shirt!"

I must have looked at that email and the photo of her clutching Baby under her arm a dozen times since Friday. That thing they say about it being better to give than to receive is, sometimes, very true.

What I was reading in the Spring of 1986

I locked myself in the den and spent an hour going through my books. I am parting with three bags full of paperbacks and hardcovers. Sigh. I hate doing it.

In concept, that is. In reality, it's not so hard.

Take, for example, Martina Navritalova's 1985 autobiography. I don't care much about Russia,* nor have I been interested in tennis since Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe retired. Yet for some reason, I bought and read this book. I found the ATM receipt and Burger King coupons -- which expired in September, 1986 -- that I used as bookmarks.

Judging by the bookmarks, I did plough through it. But I remember nothing about it and will never read it again. And so it's off to Goodwill. With bags and bags of others.

I have more books to go through. And then there are the audiobooks. But I'm done for tonight. What I've put aside is already too much for the bus and will require a $12 cab ride. I promised myself I'd take one bag of stuff over to Goodwill every month in 2015, and this is one resolution I'll make good on.

*Sorry, but I never have. I have a very American-centric world view.

Sunday Stealing

To play along, click here.

What TV gameshow/reality show would you like to be on? Wheel of Fortune. Isn't that the most criminally easy show?

What was the first movie you bought in VHS or DVD? I'm sorry but I don't remember. The first movie I saw on cable was In Praise of Older Women. Do I get points for that?

If you had one million dollars to spend only on yourself, what would you spend it on? I'd redo my condo, get season tickets at Wrigley Field, and worry a lot less about retirement.

One place you've visited, can't forget and want to go back to? Since the King's 80th birthday, I've been considering a return to Graceland.

Do you trust easily? Probably more than I should.

Do you generally think before you act, or act before you think?  Probably less than I should.

Is there anything that has made you unhappy these days? There's been a lot of drama at work and it's been weighing on me. But hopefully it's behind us.

Do you have a good body image? No. And nor should I.

What is your favorite fruit? It changes. I'm going through a banana phase these days.

I’m always being asked… if my eyes are really that green.

The last big belly laugh I had was… during the movie Whiplash, which I just saw at the theater. Specifically the line was, "Four words you'll never hear from the NFL."

What websites do you visit daily? Amazon, news feeds, the web roll at right ...

What have you been seriously addicted to lately? Salted chocolate

What kind of person do you think the person who tagged you is? I wasn't tagged.

What's the last song that got stuck in your head? "Go Ask Alice." I have no idea why. "Remember what the doormouse said: feed your head, feed your head ..."

Favorite clothing? Jeans

 Do you think Rice Krispies are yummy? No, I think they're rather bland.

What would you do if you saw $100 lying on the ground? 

Items you couldn't go without during the day? Coke, my tunes, my cats
What should you be doing right now? So many things! I promised myself I'd sort through my books today. (I have a lot of books.)

Feeling much better about it all

"Our anger is overcome by our faith."

So said our minister this morning. He was talking about his rage when over the Jordanian pilot who was burned alive by ISIS. He said he was wiping his kitchen counter when he heard the news, and told us that his reaction was so strong that, had he been washing dishes at that moment his household would have had service for seven, not eight.

But it passed. He understands that terrorism is born of fear and deprivation, and that our love and faith are stronger and will prevail.

It's the sermon I wanted to hear -- needed to hear -- last month, right after the slaughter at Charlie Hebdo in Paris. Ironically this morning's home run was hit by our associate minister, the same man who disappointed me last month. He was at the pulpit again this week because our regular minister was spending the service with the Sunday School students.

I feel better. I feel happier. I heard that a more learned man than I wrestles with these issues, and he taught me how to work through it by sharing how he works through it.

This is why I go to church. I felt lighter when I left the building.