Saturday, February 13, 2010

Child's Play

Good morning, World:

You know the commercial about college scholarships? The one where the guy is sitting on the couch watching a commercial about how all parents think their kid is going to get a 4 year scholarship, and the guy looks over at his own kid who is, at that moment, twirling around in his striped footy pajamas with a box on his head? I'm pretty sure I saw that commercial too many times when I was pregnant and that I laughed just a little too hard. That's all I'm going to say.

In many families, maybe yours, there's a secret language-a code. For your entertainment, or maybe for mine, I've translated a few of the phrases most often repeated in our house.

Translation: Everyone in the house is about to be treated to 20 minutes of relative quiet and a marked decrease in head butting incidences.

Translation: I'm overwhelmed, my ears are ringing due to your incessant chatter, and I need a break or a drink, preferably both.

Translation: A little help here?

Translation: I need money and/or a ride somewhere. (Never ever does it mean, "what do you think of this outfit", or "do you like my boyfriend?" It does, however, elicit the Pavlovian response of rolling eyes and clenching stomach muscles)

Translation: Yes, I did notice the full sink of dishes and the cluttered sideboard and I had no intention of touching them but saying that I did makes me and hopefully you, but primarily me, feel better.

Translation: It's not ok you lazy sod! What am I, your fecking maid?

HAVE YOU SEEN MY _________ (fill in the blank)
Translation: Could you stop what you are doing and go find my __________

Translation: You are in soooo much trouble you don't even know.

Translation: I need to detach you from my leg immediately before I go insane.

I TOLD YOU THAT (followed by long detailed story that ends in "remember?").
Translation: I forgot to tell you but I'm pretty sure I can convince you I didn't.

So the next time you stop by the house for a glass of wine, a bowl of chips, and some sparkling conversation, and someone yells from the other room, "I've got boogy nose" in a deep bass voice, you'll know there are no real boogers involved, just someone needing a little help. And since this phrase is interchangeable with the phrase, "Have you seen my _________", I will respond with "Where do you remember seeing it last?", which translates to "I just sat my butt down in this chair with a big ole glass of wine and I'm not getting up for love or money to look for your _________".

Even though I know exactly where _____________ is.

This is just one of the many small ways I am evil. mwwwwahhh hahahaha. But that is another whole post.

Take care,

Friday, February 12, 2010

My Valentine

Hey World:

It is Friday. Yay. And we are on the cusp of Valentine's Day weekend. I don't know about you, but this creates some unnecessary pressure in my opinion. Who's idiotic idea was Valentine's Day, anyway? What's that you say? St. Valentine's idea? And who him anyway?

Naturally, curious Chicken that I am, I looked it up. Otherwise my choices were watching the Winter Olympics opening ceremonies or putting my three-year-old to bed on the rare night when someone else has offered to do it. (Not that the Winter Olympics aren't important or interesting. Of course I will watch; the figure skating, at the very least and the luge is always fun. I always wanted to luge.)

So. St. Valentine was a very mysterious figure. See? This is already becoming more intriguing. There are three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus recognized by the Catholic church, all of whom were martyred. According to one legend, Valentine was a priest in the third century during the reign of Emperor Claudius II of Rome (and excuse me if I can't help but wonder...did he have any clothes, the Claudius? Okay that's juvenile, right? snort.) Anyway, Claudius decided that the best soldiers in his army were those that did not have wives and children so he passed an edict forbidding young men in Rome to marry. Valentine, the priest, married young lovers in secret, and when this was discovered, he was put to death. There are other stories but I am not your history teacher and this is not a continuing ed forum. This is the story I liked the best and I am sticking to it.

This Valentine, he was a nice guy with a soft heart for romance. This still does not explain why every February we all are expected to traipse about finding cards, candy and flowers. Frankly, I like shopping for cards any time of the year, so this is some consolation, but I prefer my romantic endeavors to be spontaneous and completely devoid of expectation. I like the element of surprise.

Once, when I was at Band, sorry, different story. Once, on a summer day, I arrived home to find my kitchen table absolutely littered with new clothes. T-shirts, shorts, camisoles...all the stuff I loved to live in. No note. No explanation whatsoever, but of course I knew who they were from. You always know, right? It was the kind of spontaneous, thoughtful gift that drew tears, not only because the clothes all fit and were completely my taste, or because at that point in my life I didn't, out of necessity, go about shopping for myself, but because they were given by a guy I don't associate with shopping. If this man had a choice between cleaning the cellar and making a trip to the Gap, he would hands down clean the cellar, and then the garage just to be on the safe side. But one day, in the middle of summer, spontaneity and maybe a little arrow struck him and he braved the big bad retail world to bring a little joy and fashion into my life. And tonight he took over the bedtime duties. He's my kind of Valentine.

I'm not a fan of Valentine's Day. I won't be signing on their Facebook page. But that doesn't mean I'm not a romantic.

Happy Valentine's Day, World. Love you.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Let's Have More Wine

Hiya World,

I admit I've had a few glasses of wine tonight. If you are lucky, I will publish this before I go to bed and you will get all the good uncensored stuff which, no doubt, Chicken will be embarrassed by come morning. Otherwise, you will probably read the edited version, which is still pure Chicken, but farm-raised vs free range. Somehow things always look different in the bright light of day and not nearly so funny.

Since the body was willing but the brain was empty, I spent a large part of the afternoon searching for blogging inspiration. I read once that if you are a little lacking for inspiration a good thing to do is read/watch/research in a variety of areas. This is, apparently, the equivalent of giving your right brain five Dunkachinos and a dozen chocolate glazed munchkins-it gets your creative juices flowing like Niagra. Or not. But it can't hurt.

I gave it a shot and it was inspiring. I learned a lot. The result is not a very cohesive post, however. Not yet anyway. I swear I'll tie it all together in the end. Ready? Climb aboard....

So first off, I checked out some twitter. And guess what World? Prince is now on Twitter. If you've read my previous blogs you know I'm not a big fan of Prince. It all goes back to those kids playing Purple Rain over and over again outside my window after a double bartending shift twenty something years ago. Now...if it really was Prince then I had to follow it, right? How could I not? Hypocrite, heal thyself. Also, His tweet said that he would follow the first ten people that became followers, and well, I'm competitive ok? And probably it's not really Prince. He doesn't seem like the social type. Ashton Kutcher? Yeah, totally. But Prince? I'm sure if it is him, his agent made him do it. Anyway, I started following him. And then, in true Chicken style, I started worrying. What if I'm one of the first 10? What if he starts following me? What if he finds my blog? And if he finds my blog he will read how I am never ever Prince in my Rockstar fantasies. For all those unflattering reasons I listed. And then what if he sends out assasins? Because, let's face it, guy is weird. Can he find Chicken? Prince if you are reading, I would just like to say I was in a bar last summer and they were playing one of your videos and I thought to myself, "you know, he really is a verra good dancer", so my opinions are not all bad. I just think, you know, maybe you could take yourself a little less seriously. Please don't kill me.

Next I checked in on John Rosemond for a little child-rearing advice. This would be due to my recent chocolate bribing tactics which are beginning to cause a bit of parenting guilt. Chocolate bribing is addictive. You start with a few m&ms just to get the kid on the potty and before you know it you are throwing hershey bars at him just to buy yourself a little peace and quiet. Anyway, one of John's recent articles states that 98% of children under the age of 10 meet the requirements for designation as a sociopath. I thought about it. The devious way my toddler slips quietly out of the room only to be discovered rummaging through a drawer of sharp knives...the way he laughs as he does exactly the opposite of whatever I just told him to do...the way he drives me insane changing his mind over and over again when given two choices, neither of which he likes...oh yeah, that's my boy. Totally part of the majority. No wonder I have a chocolate bribing problem. And drink.

On to CMT music videos. What I discovered here is that Reba McIntyre and Sawyer Brown do not age. What's up with that? I'm thinking Vampire. And Tim McGraw is still hot. Shouldn't he have a beer belly by now? Less hair? Guest appearances on True Blood for all. Something's fishy in Nashville.

I was getting a little hungry with all this research so I went into the kitchen to see what I could rummage up. I'm behind on the shopping so there was not much to be had, but I found some bacon, some already baked potatoes from earlier in the week, and some eggs. I started to fry it all up and suddenly, like in a fairy tale, there were two men standing by my side. Husband and teenager. Forget internet dating, forget breast enhancements. If you are looking for a man, open all your windows and fry some bacon.

Finally, I looked in one of my old favorite books, "Writing Down The Bones" and in one chapter she advises "Be an Animal".

Really? Okay, whatever, I've had just enough wine that this sounds like a rockin' idea. I pretend I am a Chicken (what else?). I am in the the barnyard. I step forward on my funny jerky legs with no knees and I throw out a tentative cluck or two. With my beady black eyes, I spy corn, which I recently learned is not a vegetable but a grain, and I boycott the corn because I am on the Atkins diet. I ask the little girl throwing the corn to please forget the corn and get me some protein like maybe some bacon, or roast beef or a hard-boiled egg...ahhhhhh....EGG murderer...CANNIBAL....what have I become????

Okay, that was fun. Let's see if I can tie it all together now.

Once upon a time, there was a little chicken looking for some inspiration, so she went to Nashville toting her tiny guitar over her shoulder (which annoyingly kept slipping because chickens don't have shoulders)and relying on the kindness of strangers to guide her, and 'lo she was discovered and all the biggest country stars wanted a piece of the chicken. At first it was all good-they laughed, they danced, they drank wine and ate truffles. Chicken laid golden eggs every day and served peanut butter and fried banana sandwiches every night. And time stood still. But Chicken got homesick and and wanted to return to her barnyard and to the little girl who fed her the corn. The Stars bribed her with chocolate and witty lyrics and she almost became addicted, but still she insisted on returning to Somewhere in New England. So desperate were Nashville's finest to keep their favorite muse, they decided to perform a special ceremony to keep Chicken under their control. The ceremony was attended by Nashville's elite, 10 vampires, 20 chocolate-addicted toddlers, Elvis, and John Rosemond. It involved a live sacrifice. Chicken was the guest of honor. Prince presided. He performed a special ritual dance which was really quite nice, but nobody could see it because he made everybody turn around while he danced to prevent all their eyes from zapping his youth and genius.

Then Chicken woke up. It was 3 am. She couldn't sleep. So she pretended she was Tim McGraw singing "Cowboy in Me" to thousands of adoring fans. She went back to sleep. And when she awoke Prince was gone. The vampires, toddlers, John Rosemond and CMT stars were gone, too. Elvis had left the building, but will never be gone, not if you really believe.

The men were not gone. They were still there and wanting to know what's for breakfast. Dunkachinos and Munchkins for all.

Goodnight World. Sweet dreams and hope inspiration strikes you in whatever you are attempting today.

Take care,