Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Oh Sandy, Baby

Combine a natural disaster and a kid who doesn't trust her designated adults to keep her safe* while being completely oblivious to any potential dangers created by said natural disaster** and you get an interesting few days. (*This is a typical side effect of her background.) (**This is a typical side effect of being a teenager. Maybe? I have no idea.)

The storm is coming. The Kid wants to go out to the playground and meet up with some friends. We impose an arbitrary 3pm curfew because we don't live in an evacuation zone, but who the hell lets their kids wander around the neighborhood this close to a natural disaster? I was never allowed to go out this close to a storm, but am being treated like Mussolini for not letting her stay out until 6:30.

We try to explain the likelihood that none of her friends were allowed to go out and the dangers of flying objects in hurricanes and pre-hurricanes.

She comes home at 3 claiming that she's going right back out again because her friends are allowed to stay out until 5:30. We manage to persuade her that we're not trying to trick her into spending quality time with us and she retreats to just inside her door where she listens to music on her cell phone (on speakerphone) loudly enough that we can't really hear the TV. 

HA giggles at her sit-in protest. I fear the day that she learns about the anti-Vietnam protests of the 1960s and starts utilizing some of those tactics. She's already got the sit-in down, but I'm not looking forward to the chanting and signs.

We abandon our plans to clean the kitchen and bathroom and start a jigsaw puzzle on the dining room table so we can guard the front door without dying of boredom. We discover that we have different styles of jigsaw puzzling and worry that this may have implications on our continued marital bliss. I mean really. Who sets out all the puzzle pieces facing up before you've even separated and assembled the outside pieces?

Public transportation is shut down, local businesses are closed, I sit at my computer desk by the front window and see exactly no cars drive by in two hours. The Kid asks if we can get takeout for lunch. 

I explain all the logistical problems that combined to keep the pizza place closed today. Her answer? "I wasn't talking about pizza."

Further explain the dangers of delivery persons riding bicycles, mopeds and cars in high winds. And the stores are closed anyway.

She seems unimpressed by this information.

Two and a half hours later, she decides to have crackers. She does not want cheese because "we only have the sandwich kind" meaning swiss cheese slices, and she feels that she must save the slices for sandwiches (or she refuses to eat them on crackers, I don't even). (She only eats swiss cheese. She does NOT eat cheddar. Except when shredded and mixed with Monterey jack in the combo known to her as "regular cheese" and to the rest of the planet as "cheddar jack". The rules regarding her eating are Byzantine as fuck.)

I try to tempt her with Laughing Cow cheese only to discover that it expired months ago. We find some turkey bacon and she asks HA to make it for her (the smoke gives me a migraine). 

She actually let me help her look for alternatives to the sandwich kind of cheese and voluntarily spoke to HA to ask him to make the bacon. We're getting all kinds of quality time here. Thanks, Sandy!

After 9.5 hours of watching TV, she decides that she's sick of watching television and wants to do something else. We read scary stories aloud and play cards. 

Things take a turn for the impossible to write about humorously, so I'll wrap up here.

We remain safe, dry and with electricity, but cannot say the same for large swaths of my family. Everyone is confirmed OK with the exception of a few people who are probably perfectly safe somewhere with a bottle of scotch not even thinking that their dozens of relatives might want them to check in.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Imagine My Chagrin

Last Monday, I had a spot in my vision that wouldn't go away. Everything around the spot looked distorted, so it was annoying as fuck. Well, come to think of it since bringing a teenager into my apartment, I've discovered whole new levels of annoying, so I guess this was just annoying as hell in comparison to say, three episodes of Spongebob in a row.

So I googled "persistent spot in vision" and the internets told me that it was probably an ocular migraine or caused by leftover fluid from a cold. I get loads of migraines and it's been post-nasal drip a-go-go over here, so I figured that was it. I bought an eye patch so I could keep working (not seeing out of that eye means the spot isn't bothering me. I also discovered how awesome I look in an eye patch, took a picture and posted it to Facebook to show off. As you do.

Tuesday, I had an appointment with my migraine neurologist. Who was worried that the spot might have been caused by a stroke.

We may have the world's first case of the Intertubes convincing someone that their symptoms were LESS worrisome than they really were.

I'll spare you the worry - I didn't have a stroke. Neither on Monday morning, or when the doctor told me I may have had one. 

But how embarrassing would that have been? Imagine the Facebook update.

The bad news is I had a stroke, but the good news is I still look great in an eye patch.

So I went to my opthamologist who sent me to a retina specialist who determined that the spot is some blood that leaked through a crack in my retina. Apparently, that can happen when you're as nearsighted as I am. (Another thing that can happen is being led around the office by hand because you left your glasses home and you had to take your contacts out for the exam and treatment. Good times.)

Oh yes, the treatment. I got an injection in my eyeball to help break down the spot. I got the Clockwork Orange eyelid opener things that felt like they were going to pop out of place and fly across the room at any moment. I asked the doctor beforehand how much I'd actually feel the needle and he said it would be only 5% pain and 95% instinctual terror. (I'm paraphrasing here.) It may have been more like 10% pain, but then again, the holy fuck sensation that accompanies having a needle inserted in the eyeball tends to intensify feelings of pain.

I also had the doctor reassure me that my eyeball wasn't going to pop like a balloon when he stuck a needle in it. Intellectually, I understand the anatomy of the eyeball, but on a gut level, I was still betting on pop like a balloon.

It didn't pop. The doctor kept telling me I was doing great, I guess by not screaming or running out of the room. Go me.

So that was fun. 

The little kids pointing at me and saying "pirate!" ? That's pretty damn awesome.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Movie Update

186/365 - 04/02/10 [365 Days @ 50mm] - D'Comeback Movie PremiereI've been busy with my paid writing gigs, and no, the one penny I earn in ad revenue from each post here doesn't count. (If you're new here, the ads are mostly for my own amusement, since I love seeing what the Google elves decide makes a good match or each post. Let me know in the comments if you see an ad that amuses you by its presence too.)

I had a piece up on Your Tango about how some NYC high schools are giving kids Plan B without parental notification. If you haven't checked it out already, please do. Or don't. I know you've got shit to do.

Anyway, the cultural exchange has continued. S has introduced us to the awesome cartoons Adventure Time and Invader Zim. She has also subjected us to Back at the Barnyard (which, dudes, seriously, that cow has udders and yet it's a guy? um what?), Fan Boy & Chum Chum (which didn't make any more sense to me when I actually paid attention to it, so ok, I guess) and Happy Tree Friends (which I took the fuck off the Netflix Instant Queue because I couldn't stand the sound of woodland creatures being squished to death in every single episode).

On the movie front, she's selected Gothika (way better than expected going from her taste, I mean, it's actually good, you should totally see it), Paranormal Activity 2 (agony, except that agony would at least be interesting. even she was annoyed by it), Candyman (hey, at least it had a plot), Dolls (stupid, but awesome and I totally called who was going to make it to the end), Bag of Bones (good, and day-m Pierce Brosnan still looks yummy, but SPOILER ALERT, seriously, Stephen King? There's a curse made by a black woman with her dying breath that's actually a real curse that makes people do stuff they wouldn't do otherwise because...she was black, I guess? That is some "mystical primitive" racist BS right there Uncle Stevie), and Paranormal Entity (such a lame Paranormal Activity rip off that the Netflix description points out that it's not the famous movie you're thinking of.)

We have shown her Labyrinth (shrug), The Dark Crystal (shrug), Star Wars (shrug) and Evil Dead 2 ("it was a good story, but the effects were cheap", as opposed to Paranormal Activity and its $10,000 budget, I guess). I attempted to show her the Make Em Laugh bit from Singin' in the Rain and she texted through the whole thing, refusing to look at the TV. She will now be haunted by the ghost of Donald O'Conner. I did warn her.

I'll include it here because I know you have better sense than to miss a chance to watch this awesome number.

I, for one, look forward to the haunting.

I Tivo'd Jeff Dunham's new special for her because she thinks he's hilarious. If you're unaware of him, Jeff Dunham is America's favorite racist, misogynist ventriloquist. I thought he was hilarious when I was 13 too, but he didn't have as many racist puppets then and certainly wasn't making the hacky "my ex-wife took all my money" jokes. It made me so sad to see an audience of adults laugh at his unfunny shit. And yes, I watched it. It went down like this.

Me to HA: Do you think she's going to make us watch it with her?
HA to me: I dunno. 

Later, The Kid to us: Can we watch Jeff Dunham together later?
Me: sure.
HA & Me: [laughter]
TK: What's so funny?
Me: We were just wondering before if you were going to let us watch it with you.

So what have your kids been subjecting you to?