Music & TV

No one cares what I think about Frozen, but that is why I have a blog so there

Like the rest of the internet, I took my big kids to see Frozen over the holidays. They loved it, I loved it, and it will occupy a special place as The First Movie They Liked That All The Other Kids Liked Too. Other people's kids have gone mad for other princess movies or Cars or Toy Story or whatever, but not mine! Not even Finding Nemo, people. What kids do not like Finding Nemo? Not that they don't like to watch things on screens - I have it on record somewhere that they watched 987 episodes of Busytown Mysteries back to back while I was pregnant and miserable with Emma, but sit through a MOVIE? No, thank you. 

Mary Poppins - that was the exception. I have no idea why. But we rented it on Amazon one night and now we've purchased it and seen it a billion times and now whenever Emma sees anyone in remotely old fashioned clothing OR hears any sort of old timey music (like Christmas music) she chirps, "Mawy Poppins?"

Oh, so Phillip and I went to see Saving Mr. Banks a while back. Loved it. Emma Thompson is just the BEST. The flashback scenes went a little overboard for me, but every bit with ET was brilliant and the fact that we are so up on our Mary Poppins knowledge made it just a little more special. So it was super fun the other night when we were driving home from Victoria and listening to the Mary Poppins soundtrack on Spotify and at the end there were little bits of interviews with the songwriters and original versions of songs. We felt like we KNEW them! It was so great! 

SO GUESS WHAT. The Frozen soundtrack has the same thing! At the end of the soundtrack on Spotify, past all the instrumentals, there are a handful of OUTTAKE songs sung by the composers (a husband wife team, SO CUTE.) And it is SO! INTERESTING! For example, you learn that they TOO think it's a travesty that Jonathan Groff doesn't have a big song!

But the best thing was that I learned there WAS a little bit more to that movie. I sat through and I enjoyed it just as much as everyone else, but I thought the story was pretty lame. So Elsa just has this power? And no one knew? Where did it come from? What's it about? Who the heck are these TROLLS? Where is the CONTEXT?! I saw a preview and assumed there was some big deal about it always being sunny in the kingdom and then suddenly it's WINTER, but that wasn't exactly addressed in the movie, and then out of nowhere there's a Comedic Relief Snowman. 

HOWEVER. If you listen to the composers you find out that there was supposed to be this whole PROPHECY! A TROLL prophecy! That one day someone would bring winter! I feel like that was important information that should not have been cut from the movie, Disney Empire! I mean, wouldn't that have tied so many things together? And given it some underlying tension it didn't have? ANYWAY. There are also a couple more songs that develop the two princess characters, and I sort of wish they hadn't cut one of those too. The composers say that song is "more aggressive"... so, I don't know. 

ANYWAY. I am now more annoyed because the movie COULD have made more sense, and relieved because WHEW I wasn't just being a fussypants about a movie everybody loves. 

ALSO (one more thing, I'm SORRY) the sisters-in-conflict/friendship/true love theme reminded me a LOT of Wicked (it wasn't just Idina Menzel!) and I found myself hoping for a MUSICAL version, because what's better than a movie musical? A STAGE MUSICAL. And I hope those extra and cut songs find their way into the stage production. They're good songs and they make the story make SENSE. 

AND NOW I AM DONE!

In conclusion!

See Frozen! Listen to the music 24/7 with your children! And go see Saving Mr. Banks! Emma Thompson is amazing! And maybe pass on American Hustle, which has 70's style and marvelous acting, but not much in the way of an interesting STORY. (Until the very end.) (But the acting - it's worth it for the acting I suppose.) 


If you are in your early thirties and listen to music, maybe you will not hate this post

This morning we drove down to spend the day with Phillip's parents - ALERT! The Home Goods is not open yet! WOE! - and we were listening to the radio, as we do, and a Matchbox 20 song came on and a thought occurred to me: 99% of the music that was popular when we were in college is TERRIBLE. 

I was SUUUUUPER into music in college (1997-2001), but I was listening to the Indigo Girls and Dar Williams and Sinead O'Connor and 10,000 Maniacs and learning to play Ani DiFranco songs on the guitar (I can still play 'Both Hands') and basically if you were a woman who accompanied her self-written angsty songs with angsty guitar, I bought your album. Bonus points if you were a lesbian. My dorm room was its own little Lilith Fair AND I HAVE NO SHAME. 

Phillip, like all the other musically-inclined guys I knew in college, was into Dave Matthews. (Also a whole bunch of other people, but Music Phillip Listened To When I First Met Him could be an entire week-long series of posts and then he might leave me because I might not properly genuflect before Sting.)

But the stuff on the radio? UGH! 

So we're having this conversation in the car and I'm having these flashbacks to my sophomore year dorm and my beautiful, gleaming, absolutely ginormous bookshelf stereo that I bought with my very own money, of which I was incredibly proud, about which all the musically-inclined guys I knew laughed because it was a Magnavox. What's wrong with Magnavox I ask you! For the record, I am still not an electronics brand name snob and my Magnavox worked JUST FINE thankyouverymuch. ANYHOW. 

I remember where that monstrosity sat on my little desk area and I remember the first time I heard Britney Spears and thinking WHAT IS THAT HORRIBLE SOUND. Britney, however, endured, and now I actually have a little spot soft for her and her Southern crazy. 

Then there was other stuff. Like Sugar Ray. And Blink 182. And The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. And Smashmouth. And stuff NO ONE WANTS TO LISTEN TO ANYMORE. Ugh, remember that Marcy Playground song? HAAAAAATE. 

I didn't really like it THEN either. 

Phillip, whose favorite thing to do is Be Contrary, tried to come up with songs that we loved/are still good/endured, but I don't feel he did a particularly good job. The best he could do (for me) was N*SYNC. Who I love. I don't care what you say. One of my favorite things was when all the freshman boys in my roommate's Asian American bible study group memorized the Bye Bye Bye dance and performed in the lounge. 

Then we started talking about music from HIGH SCHOOL and, well, I'm not sure how I feel about music from the mid-late nineties. I was barely aware of the whole grunge scene and I didn't like much of what I heard anyway. But sometimes I'll turn on the radio and hear the live version of the Stone Temple Pilots' 'Plush' and DUDE, that is a good song. Mostly I remember what kind of music all the boys I liked were listening to and then I have to go back and time and shoot myself for being such a pushover. But besides the grunge stuff we have the R&B scene and what woman in her early thirties does not have a junior high or high school dance memory involving BoyzIIMen? HMMM? GOOD STUFF, LADIES. 

I remember a girl in high school saying she liked Green Day and all I knew about Green Day is that you were Edgy if you liked that music. Sort of like how I remember a girl in college saying she liked Coldplay, back before most people had ever heard of Coldplay, and all I knew about Coldplay was that you were Cooler Than Thou if you liked them. 

Gah, this post has no thesis. No wait. The thesis is: there is no popular music from my college years that I am excited to force my children to listen to when they are older and embarrassed by me. HOW DISAPPOINTING. 

Also, I really like a lot of the music on the radio NOW. Maybe this makes me cool? Like I love that new Payphone song, possibly because I am in love with Adam Levine, but Phillip is all NO ONE EVEN KNOWS WHAT A PAYPHONE IS ANYMORE. (He's jealous.) 

I've sort of traded my angsty lady music for upbeat dancey stuff, music I can run to, music that sounds good when you're driving, music that makes washing the dishes a little less tedious. I call it my teenager music. I don't know what half of it is (and there was the one time I almost died because I found out the song I thought was sung by a girl was actually Justin Bieber) but I love it and Pandora means I can have it on whenever I want. There used to be a time when I religiously purchased every new Indigo Girls cd, but I haven't listened to them in years. Perhaps because I'm no longer an angsty college student but a tired, busy, (and yes, also angsty) SAHM who doesn't have time for all that harmonized self-reflection anymore. Give me Usher! 

(But I'll always love you, Dar! Anyone want to drive down to Portland on Saturday and see her show? No? You don't have a babysitter? DAMMIT.)


What is this feeling, so sudden and new?

I have tried to start a fairly serious blog post about ninety times at this point, and now my Wicked Soundtrack Pandora Station busted out the 'Seasons of Love' and I'm having a really hard time not laughing. I mean, apparently the universe doesn't WANT me to write a Fairly Serious Blog Post. I can't imagine WHY, I mean I am so GOOD at Fairly Serious Blog Posts!

Seasons of LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE!

Okay, maybe we'll just suffice to say that I? Am doing better. A lot. I know this is true because I talked to something like nine thousand people this weekend and not once did I think to myself that I would rather be cleaning horse barns or doing math or running sprints. No, I actually had FUN talking to OTHER PEOPLE. This is a good sign. 

Oh my gosh, now it's playing Come What May from Moulin Rouge which is the Moulin Rouge song (okay, maybe ALL of the songs from Moulin Rouge) I turn up to Eardrum Blasty in the car and BELT OUT even though I sing like a chipmunk with pneumonia. Oh man. Maybe the universe wants me to be angsty and serious AFTER ALL! I mean, suddenly my life doesn't seem such a waste!

Tonight we visited some friends who just built a new swingset in their backyard and all the dads were outside with the kids and the moms were inside talking and it was so much fun that I was all WAIT. Why don't we do this MORE OFTEN. Which is a VERY good sign, don't you think? 

It's hard being an introvert, you guys. The extroverts are always, "Dude, what is UP" and then getting all frustrated/confused/offended/bored when you can't articulate what is Up, even though you would very much LIKE to articulate what is Up. Sometimes it's so hard that you pretty much stop talking to people altogether, not that I have much experience with this, AHEM. 

But I talked to people yesterday and I talked to them today and I made plans to do more talking this week and oh, things are much better. I have to tell you about the talking I did at the bed and breakfast but I think I'll save it for the Catholic blog because, well, I may have to mention the words "Dobson family" and I'm in too much of a seasons of looooooooooooooove! mood for that right now.

Oh wait, did I tell you about the bed and breakfast? So it was Phillip's birthday last week and I wanted to do something Fun except I only had so many dollars for Fun and what to do with the kids but it has to be DIFFERENT and blah blah blah I ended up finding a bed and breakfast in my parents' town. So we left the kids with the grandparents and went to the fair at night and stayed at a bed and breakfast. Which sounds kind of awesome, right? Except for... oh, so many things. Better known as: stop trying so hard you big fat dork. 

So for our HONEYMOON we planned this incredibly... I don't know, I think at the time I thought it was ROMANTIC, so this ROMANTIC trip down Highway 101, which is the highway that follows the Pacific coast. We were going to drive 101 and stay at bed and breakfasts on our way to San Francisco, stay a few nights, then zoom back up I-5 in time to go to work the following week. ANYWAY. What a BUST. Turns out we are so not bed and breakfast people and we are ESPECIALLY not bed and breakfast people if they are all Victorianed out. Which, as you know, 99% of them ARE Victorianed out. Plus, you have to eat breakfast with PEOPLE and sure we like people most of the time, but we are not there to CHAT and you have CHAT and once we checked into the Westin in San Francisco and had ourselves a proper honeymoon experience, we figured this out. Bed and Breakfasts: No. Swanky hotels: YES PLEASE. 

And yet! We keep trying this bed and breakfast thing! Or, rather, *I* keep trying it. I keep thinking it will be COZY! And ROMANTIC! But it's just... FUNNY! Like this place, I mean, it's hilarious that there's a bed and breakfast in my parents' town AT ALL. And it's this exact replica of a Parents' Town Semi-Famous Person and decked out in the MOST hideous Victorian stuff and OMG the owner sat down and talked to us all through breakfast WHAT WAS I THINKING. 

(I am doing better, but not THAT much better.)

It totally sounds like I drank thirty-seven coffees or at least threw back a couple of G&Ts before I wrote this post, doesn't it. But I didn't! Am totally sober! 

Anyway. We managed to find it all funny instead of lame, which was good. And I sat and ate funnel cake on a bench at the fair while Phillip and my sister went on these rides that made me motion sick just watching. Fun times! 

Pandora is now serving up Jump by the Glee cast and now I need to go, I don't know, do some high kicks or something. Woo!


Obviously I need to get out more

I took Molly to the doctor today and spent some time explaining Molly's frat boy lifestyle to the doctor. The doctor was all, "Well DUH she's obviously OVERTIRED" and I was all, "DUH, I read that book TOO" and possibly there was some totally transparent and embarrassing-in-retrospect posturing on my part because it's not like I can have my doctor think I might not KNOW something. I don't want to look like a stupid fluff-for-brains stay-at-home-MOM.

INSECURE, MUCH? Jeez, self. Drink some wine already.

So this afternoon I let Molly sleep as long as she wanted and do you know how long that was? Nearly five hours. FIVE. HOURS. And then I am 99% sure she was ready to go back to sleep two hours later, but silly me I tried to change her diaper first and completely missed that thirty-second window of opportunity. However! I kept on keeping on and tonight is the first night my girl has gone to bed before ten. That beautiful ethereal sound you hear is ANGELS SINGING.

I am fully expecting to be woken up before I finish this post. OOOH, DRAMATIC TENSION!

And while we're waiting for that, I will tell you who my favorite TV character is. Because I spent an awful lot of time thinking about it. The answer is:

YEAH RIGHT. Here is my list of Favorite [Current] TV CharacterS. PLURAL.

Blair Waldorf from Gossip Girl. I didn't like Gossip Girl when it first aired, mostly because I am SO OVER the wild rich kid thing, but then Blair goes on about how hard it is to find minions and acts like a twenty-first century Amber-from-Clueless around boring Dan Humphrey and I start to swoon. She gets all the best lines. I'd list Chuck as well if he did anything other than squint and brood and disappoint Blair all the time. Stop making Blair cry!

Kevin from Brothers & Sisters.
I read some review somewhere that complained Kevin is too whiny and bitchy and may I just say that this is why I love him? HE gets the best lines on that show. I sometimes don't get the interactions between the Walker siblings, but I always believe Kevin. (Special note of concern: What are they doing with Amy Abbott? Why are they making her so irritating and boring? Remember when Amy Abbott went all hysterical about the hooker thong? THAT WAS AWESOME. I mean, she can do something other than provide reasons for tedious scenes with Holly. Ugh.)

Barney from How I Met Your Mother. Everyone loves Barney, as evidenced by the comments, Saturday Night Live and the show turning him into a Hopeless Romantic.

Ummm, Everyone on Mad Men? Can I do that? Especially Don and Pete and Joan and Francine, but not so much with Betty.

Andrea on Samantha Who. The show is sort of dorky sweet, but Andrea (and Samantha's mom, now that I think of it) are the funny ones. Are you noticing a trend? The sassy characters with the good lines? I think they're the characters *I* would want to play were I an Actress with any sort of Talent.

Marc and Amanda on Ugly Betty. The writers on this show must have the best time with these two. There were a couple of Marc- and Amanda-centric episodes earlier this season and they were so. good. They've always been evil but now they're evil with a little bit of human thrown in and I LOVE IT.

I KNOW there are more, but Molly is squeaking and I'm having trouble remembering my many many television loves.

Oh wait! Special You-Are-Awesome Bonus! PHILLIP'S Favorite TV Characters!

Admiral Adama from Battlegeekistar Galactigeek. Quoth Phillip, "Because he's tough and in command."

Larry the Cucumber from VeggieTales. "Because he loves his lips."

This is why Phillip doesn't do the blogging around here.

Aaaaand, there she goes. I'm back on baby duty. See ya


A gimlet with your pumpkin bread

I didn't watch the season finale of Mad Men until last night. Partly because I was so utterly exhausted from the baptism festivities on Sunday that I couldn't stay up late enough to watch, partly because I didn't want to watch it during nap time and risk someone waking up. Oh, and the sooner I watched it the sooner it would be over. Boo.

I have to say, I was rooting for Don and Betty. I was relieved when Don showed up at the stables and crushed when Betty slid into the closet with that guy in the bar. I don't know if she asked him to come home just to tell him she's pregnant or if she really wants him there, but I'm glad the show let us know where Don will be during the hiatus. (Like these are real people!)

But! What made Don come home? Just hanging out with Anna? His 'baptism' in the ocean? I don't know. I'm suspicious. My take on the second-to-last episode was that he can't be happy unless he's living as Dick Whitman, and I don't really see how he's going to manage that with Betty. Can he be Dick Whitman with all of Don Draper's things? (All that money from the merger! Sweet!) And call me a cynic, but how does Don Draper not cheat again?

Anyway, all the office goings on were hilarious. The switchboard girl, Pete playing both sides, Duck flipping out in the meeting. (And Don's Don Draperness in that scene is why we don't really want him to go back to being Dick Whitman...)

There was not enough Roger. There was barely any Joan. I actually began to root for Peggy and PETE what is WRONG WITH ME? And I realized I knew next to nothing about the Cuban missile crisis. I loved that shot of Pete staring out the window of his dark office, holding that gun. I always wondered why he bought himself a gun.

For those of you who haven't seen Mad Men, I wrote all of the above because stupid Typepad is not letting me upload the [gorgeous] pictures of the pumpkin patch we went to over the weekend. Wait, let me try again...

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The Mountain

No really, that's what we call it. Officially it's Mt. Rainier, but everyone just calls it The Mountain. As in, "The Mountain's out today!"

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Just his size.

I suppose we could have gone to a real pumpkin patch (ie: the kind where the pumpkins are not already picked and laid out in neat rows) but we are city folk. This was good enough for us.

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Someone did not want to leave.

I'm loving fall this year. The food, the weather (you can tell it's been pretty sunny), the upcoming holidays, seeing my jack 'o lantern lit up on the sidewalk. Turns out my vitamin D level is slightly low (normal is 33-100 and I'm at 29), but so far so good.

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Now if only I could fit into my old jeans... THESE ARE NOT THEM.

P.S. Lest you think we left Molly by the side of the road, there were plenty of Relatives at my parents' house (because that's where the pumpkin patches are!) willing to keep Molly all toasty and warm at home.

Anyway. Two posts in one! Don Draper and pumpkins! Both very yummy.


In case you didn't understand how much I love TV

*****RED ALERT! RED ALERT!*****

The season finale isn't till NEXT week! MY BAD! I think I saw some ad for the season finale and assumed it was this coming Sunday, whatever, excuses, blah blah, I AM THE LAMEST!!!

On the bright side: we have two more episodes instead of one! And this gives you PLENTY of time to buy a plane ticket to Seattle!

To make up for it, I'll tell you that Jon Hamm is going to be on next week's Saturday Night Live. SWOON.

Also! Trivia! Jon Hamm dated Lorelei Gilmore for all of one episode! DOUBLE SWOON!

All right. My sister just implied that I am being stalkerish (even though she's the one who conjured up the Gilmore Girls reference WHATEVER) so I'm going to stop now. Ahem.

****END RED ALERT!****

The Mad Men season finale is Sunday night. SUNDAY NIGHT. Throughout this sad and lonely TiFaux-less period of my life (which Phillip is working on amending as I type), Mad Men has been the one single show I've managed to watch in real time every week. I don't think I've liked a show this much since Veronica Mars was on TV. And, like Veronica Mars, I occasionally re-watch episodes, because you missed the title of the book Don was reading or you didn't quite hear what Ken said to Sal or you completely blank on the fact that Jane bought Don's extra shirts at Mencken's. IMPORTANT STUFF LIKE THAT!

Anyway. I am alternately thrilled and despairing that the season finale is tomorrow night, although more despairing than usual because no one is watching it with me. Not even my sisters, the people who turned me on to Logan Echolls, are watching Mad Men. And so I need to ask: do any of you want to fly out here Sunday evening? We can put on our reddest lipstick and tease our hair and drink martinis and it will be SO MUCH FUN. I am not even kidding. Please come visit. My TiFaux might even be all fixed so we can rewind if we miss anything!

I'm off to mope. If TV's not your thing, there's a new post at Hot By Thirty. Although, moaning over the state of your closet might not be your thing either and then we REALLY can't be friends.


The Silent Fashion Assassin

You don't know how embarrassed I am to say this but I missed the Project Runway finale.

IN FACT! I didn't even REALIZE I'd missed it till I got Leticia's comment. FOR SHAME.

My TiFaux is oh so sadly still broken. WEEKS ago we had a wind storm and a power outage and poof! There went my best friend. I've tried my very darndest not to complain too much to The Management because he is busy with his Real Job and also pitching in with the care of two temperamental small people. I didn't want to be all, "FIX MY TIFAUX OR I SHALL DIE." Or even, "I can only watch one show at 8:30 pm on Thursday. WHAT AM I GOING TO DO ABOUT THE OTHER FOURTEEN SHOWS?" I do, Internet. I really do try my very best not to be a Big Fat Nag, but oh GOD the TRAUMA.

Phillip quietly told me how much parts for my new TiFaux would cost and I said, "Do you not think I would sell a kidney?" So the parts were purchased and Phillip is slowly bandaging up the TiFaux downstairs, while I watch shows in real time (HORROR) and completely miss out on pretty much everything that takes place when Jack is going to bed and the dinner dishes need to be washed up and Molly is spitting up over the entire living room. WHICH WOULD BE EVERYTHING.

But! I am nothing if not industrious, Internet! I ran to my trusty laptop (think of what I would do if my LAPTOP died?!) and looked up when the finale would show again because you know Bravo does nothing except show marathon after marathon of old shows. It aired again last night, and I made sure to tune in, and now I can give you my Very Important And Much Anticipated Opinion:

MEH.

Everyone was saying this season was so boring, but I didn't really think so. Maybe because I like it when everyone is nice to each other? Kenley provided some drama towards the end, but it wasn't Awesome Drama, like Wendy Pepper, or even Santino. I eventually wanted to hook Kenley up with a good therapist and a nice cocktail.

Anyway, my favorite designer made it to the end: Leeanne, the Silent Fashion Assassin. And my second favorite, Korto, made it too, so I wasn't disappointed. Kenley should have been booted after she attempted "hip hop" so Kenley wasn't even for real. For me. Whatever.

So blah blah blah runway show. There were a couple things I liked in Kenley's collection, but I didn't Get It. Korto's was not my thing. And Leeanne's I appreciated as Art, but not necessarily Clothes Someone Could Wear. (Well, maybe a few, but not anyone bigger than those models, let me tell ya.) After listening to the judges give their spiels I was pretty sure Korto was the winner. But no! The Silent Fashion Assassin prevailed! Whoo!

I loved how Kenley was all, "Hmm, should have watched my attitude," when she found out Tim Gunn was replacing La Lopez as guest judge. (Which: good on you, PR honchos. Tim Gunn is the best thing about your show.)

But still: Meh. I wasn't wowed or in love with any of the clothes. (Not that I am into clothes. Seriously. I could totally use a few days with Tim. I just like SHOWS about clothes. See: PR, Rachel Zoe, Gossip Girl.) You didn't come away feeling like Leeanne was going to make it big (not until she at least does something about those bangs). You DID come away hoping that Lifetime can freshen up the show, while still keeping the bits that make it awesome. Which would be Tim Gunn.

We'll see, eh?

Speaking of clothes, I've got about 40 loads of laundry to do and heaps of baby clothes that need to be sorted, put away or shlepped to Goodwill. Later!


How old am I? Let the Teen Choice Awards count the ways.

Phillip and I are reduced to watching the Teen Choice Awards tonight. September cannot come fast enough, and not just because I am more than ready to have this baby. I have no opinion about the Jonas Brothers, I have cringed each time a starlet hikes up her strapless dress, I am feeling like Mariah Carey is too old to wear yellow hot pants, I shudder each time a too-old-to-play-a-teen star says something like, "This is KRAZY!" or "You guys are UN! BELIEVABLE!", I can't figure out what that judge from America's Best Dance Crew is wearing on her head, but Hannah Montana can do no wrong. I love Hannah Montana. SUE ME.

You know who's a cutie? Chris Brown. I realize saying that makes me about seven hundred years old, but you know what? I AM. I just like to see what the kids are up to these days, with their music and their dance crews and their speed-of-light texting.

Did I tell you about our cell phone bill? So Phillip and I have a family plan and for the last couple of years we were keeping my little sister in cell minutes as well, although now she is a Real Live First Grade Teacher and can probably swing her OWN phone plan but I DIGRESS. Anyway! Whenever we get mail that comes in a #10 white envelope with a plastic window my brain goes, "Ew! Bill!" and throws it onto Phillip's desk. I am the picture of Modern Woman, eh? But this last time I got sort of curious about who's been calling who (SNOOP!) and I opened it up.

The first number listed was Phillip's and there were about ninety-seven pages of calls. Okay, maybe not that many, but when you are an IT Professional and also the sort of person whose pillow has a special indentation where his phone sleeps every night, you seriously have nearly ninety-seven pages of calls. Borrrring.

My sister's number had a page or two of calls. And yes I tried to figure out who all those numbers belong to, but even I have better things to do. So I moved on to my number.

Where there was (AND I SWEAR) like, two inches of calls. TWO INCHES! I mean, I know I don't use my cell phone that often, but REALLY? That's IT? And those calls? Were all to Phillip. Or the one or two people who only call my cell phone (and then leave a message, because my phone is always dead, and then I have to call them back a week later when I realize my phone has been dead all this time and I feel bad.) How lame am I? I can't even justify owning a cell phone at this point, let alone nagging my husband to buy me an iPhone. An iPhone! What am I going to do with one of those?!

(Tangent! You know how I said I was seven hundred years old? You know who is REALLY seven hundred years old? BRIAN AUSTIN GREEN. Dudes! He looks like these kids' DAD. Speaking of David Silver, what do you think about this new 90210 show they keep promoting?)

Anyway. I am pretty much the only person I know who not only still has a home phone but refuses to get rid of it. Seems like most everyone we know got rid of their home phone long ago, but Phillip will pry my purple phone with the old school answering machine out of my cold dead hands! (Or, I guess, when he tells me that the budget can't handle both a home phone AND a blog.) I just can't imagine handling all our calls on a CELL phone. I don't want to be interrupted in the middle of all the important things I do for, you know, the nurse calling to remind me about my appointment in two days. I mean, I hardly answer the phone when I know who it IS. (Except for you. I always answer your calls.)

There are two people with whom I can bear to talk to on the phone: my mother, because she is the only person in the world who cares about the nap schedule (and even she might be pretending) and my far away friend whose name we are not using for New Baby because Phillip is stubborn and irritating. Everyone else gets maybe three minutes of phone time, mainly because I am Phone Stupid. I'm not as afraid of the phone as I used to be (ordering a pizza? TERROR!) but I prefer to see you in person. Or email! God bless email!

Man. The American Idol Davids are excruciating.

So! I am thinking I should take one for the team and get a prepaid phone. You know. The kind where the numbers are huge and the volume goes up to eleven thousand because the only people using prepaid phones are YOUR PARENTS.

I'm so sorry you guys. It was either this or another in the MOLARS ARE FROM THE DEVIL series. Hopefully something fabulous will happen to me tomorrow (I score the alternate position on the Olympic gymnastics team! The baby is born! Logan Echolls calls me AND I TOTALLY PICK UP THE PHONE!) and I will not have to write about TELEVISION. AGAIN. Cross your fingers!


TV and ice cream, my favorite things

In new baby news: If one more person tells me how tired I'm going to be, I will stab them with a plastic toddler fork. Read more at Parenting.com.

In television news: for those of you whose TiVos, TiFauxs and DVRs did their job, what'd you think of this year's crop of Deezeyenerrz? I watched it live AND I recorded it. If I were a good little blogger I would go back and watch the episode all over, share my Top Three, give you my rundown on the Garments, who will be this year's Christian, Santino and Wendy Pepper etc. etc. But the truth is that I was working while I watched, and you know how the first episode has so many contestants you long for the days when it was just Christian and Jillian and Rami and Chris in the workroom? When you were attached to your characters and excited for Fashion Week and WHO ARE ALL THESE NEW PEOPLE INVADING PARSON'S?

That said. I kind of loved the girl who said she was going to be a "silent fashion assassin". I liked the girl with the big yellow flower in her hair. I suppose I should be rooting for the hometown boy, but GAH. (Also, he said he was from Seattle, but his bio says differently. Of course, if I were Blayne growing up in YAKIMA, I would have escaped to Seattle ASAP as well.)

Anyway, I promise to have a few more opinions once we whittle down the cast. Also, I promise not to be googling "css forms" while watching because wow, is that distracting.

Oooh! I DID want to tell you that on account of 1) passing my glucose test and 2) NOT HAVING GAINED ANY WEIGHT SINCE MY LAST APPOINTMENT I treated myself to an entire pint of Rocky Road ice cream while the deezeyenerrz ironed frat party cups and had meltdowns over their tablecloths. OH YES I DID. I haven't eaten ice cream since my You're Getting Too Fat Lecture (although I didn't exactly cut back on the Hershey Kisses and fudgesicles. Ahem.) IT WAS SO YUMMY. And because the pints were for 2 for six dollars, Phillip bought one and guess what HE HASN'T EATEN IT YET so I'm looking forward to another fabulous evening. At home. Alone. With my pint of ice cream. SIGH.

Anyway, I have a couple things I want to ask you, but I need to put the boy down for a nap and I don't have time to be Thorough. So for future blog topic reference, tell me: when did your kid start saying his first words?


For once I watched something educational

Thank Ted Koppel from saving you from another nap post. (Although I seriously can't help myself: three hour morning nap, people! THREE HOURS. No afternoon nap and a HELLISH time going to bed! Gah!)

But anyway. Ted Koppel. We saw him on The Daily Show a while back advertising his new Discovery Channel series on China and since Phillip and I are usually pretty interested in that stuff, we promised ourselves we'd TiVo it. Except we totally forgot (and also my TiVo is completely full of Jon & Kates (is she getting meaner?) and that series about NASA that I only watched with Phillip because THERE IS NOTHING ELSE ON, WAH. Wherefore art thou Project Runway?)

By chance we turned on the TV last night and it was on. (Well, turning on the TV was not chance. The show being on was chance. The turned on TV is pretty much the State of Being in my house.) And so there was not a lot of work getting done or any going to bed early, like we'd planned. And this morning Phillip tells me he didn't sleep well, haunted as he was by dreams of working in Chinese factories.

I don't know if you guys are interested in this kind of stuff. The series is called 'The People's Republic of Capitalism'. I have to say, on the whole, I am way more interested in redecorating Jack's room and finding cute girly portable crib bedding. Actually, I guess that just goes to show how fully entrenched I am in my Middle Class American Lifestyle, huh?

But the Beijing Olympics are coming up (anyone else tickled that it starts on 8/8/08?) and I've been reading slews of interesting stuff about China. Human rights and globalization stuff, sure, but I also recently bored Phillip half to death summarizing a piece on Chinese artists and the influence of the Cultural Revolution in The New Republic. Phillip was all, "There was noting about the new iPhone in that article. You know I am only interested in the new iPhone. By the way, where is the huge stack of Mac magazines I was carefully storing under our bed in case the fire department wanted to use our house as an example of Major Fire Hazard?"

ANYWAY. We were transfixed. The episode we watched last night flitted between Chinese factory workers to American factory workers whose jobs had gone overseas, to peasants who spend half their yearly income to send their only daughter to school in the city, to a super rich Chinese couple who were filling their brand new Western-style house with American appliances and Ethan Allen furniture. Oh, and who shop at the Chinese Walmart because it's the "upscale" place to buy your imported (from North Carolina!) chicken feet. KRAZY.

We were especially touched by the farmers' daughter who slept in a dormitory exactly like the one we visited a few years ago- eight girls to a long narrow bunkbedded room. And especially grossed out by the rich couple and their BMW and fancy dishwasher. Until I thought to myself, "I have spend at LEAST that much time picking out furniture," and then I was grossed out by my own self. We felt horrible for the midwestern woman whose factory job had been shipped to China, yet shopped at Walmart because everything's cheaper at Walmart- I mean, what is she supposed to do?

Ted Koppel interviewed a seventeen-year-old girl who spends her days putting boom boxes together. "It's a waste of my talent to work here!" she declared and who can disagree?

When the story jumped, for the zillionth time, from the lotus farmers in their shack to the rich Chinese couple, Phillip said, "That's the goal. That's all there is. That's why they're sending their daughter to school. So she can buy a BMW and an ugly four thousand dollar couch. THIS is why we need God."

We were silent for a minute, letting the Misery of Our Existence sink into our MIddle Class American Brains, brains that have churned quite a lot lately in the quest to figure out houses and grad school and two babies and what from Ikea will look nice in our overpriced house.

And there ends the Rumination on The Point of Being as told from the Cheung Perspective. For those of you who are all, "Dude, I just wanted to hear about Project Runway" I've got a post on Wading Pool Etiquette up at Parenting today. In which I take care of a one-year-old and a random four-year-old for an hour and wonder where the heck her mother is.

We're off to the grandparents. I've got work to do and Jack has his weekly dose of spoiling to enjoy. See you tomorrow.