Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Three Things: A Kick in the Butt Just for Fun

In another lifetime (almost ten years ago), I worked at a fancy jewelry store in a mall. I sold engagement rings and nice watches and junk like that. At Christmas, the mall speakers played a Christmas CD that was just various covers of the song I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus. That one disc, on repeat. For the entire Christmas season.

Nothing else. 

Mariah Carey saw mommy kissing Santa Claus, Michael Jackson saw mommy kissing Santa Claus, John Mellencamp saw mommy kissing Santa Claus, everyone saw mommy kissing Santa Claus. The man in red seems to have ulterior motives for sneaking into people's houses every year. What a jolly old creep.

That song came on the radio at the Bean just now, the Jackson 5 version, and I had to blink hard to keep my eyes from rolling out of their sockets into my scalding hot coffee. As if reading my mind, the cafe owner scurried across the room and changed the station. Maybe everyone hates that song. Maybe we should retire it. 

A petition?


It's been a while since I've written anything on here and my dad asked me this weekend why. I said I didn't have anything to write about, but that's probably not true. It feels true, but that doesn't usually mean anything at all. We've been Christmas partying and road-tripping and Sullivan has grown up into a toddler you can actually converse with and I've been writing and working on things. It's been a very full fall. It's been a pretty exciting fall, even. 

I guess it's just that sometimes every little event and thought and feeling feels like something that could and should be written down, and sometimes I feel like a simple paragraph saying we did this and this and this and this is more than enough. And sometimes I'll feel like writing something down but there's no time and then I forget about it. I'll probably look back on this season in a few years and think about how I should have written more down - stuff that doesn't have much of a point, stuff that isn't going to be picked apart by an editor or sent off to an intimidating literary agent. 

Consider this as a little kick-in-my-own-butt to get me moving again in the writing things down for fun department. You should do it too, because writing stuff down for fun is good for your mind. Actually. I'm not a mind expert, but I bet at least two in three doctors would totally agree with me on this.

Assignment: Write down three things. Any things. Do it for fun, and show it to people or not. 

Okay. My three things, off the top of my head:

1. Sullivan's thing lately is that he likes to brush my teeth. He takes this task very seriously; he grips the toothbrush in his tiny, grubby paws, jams it down my throat and pushes it around in there like he's plunging a toilet. He screws up his little face in intense concentration and peers into the vast cavern that is an adult mouth, mumbling to himself like a cantankerous dentist. I let him do it until he's gagged me two or three times. It sounds kind of violent and not fun at all, but it's not all that bad. It's more cute than it is painful, and for some reason this is how I measure things lately. 

2. I met an older woman the other day with a very unique way of remembering people's names. I met her in a store, and Barclay and Sullivan were there too. We were having a fairly normal conversation about drugs (she brought it up, I don't know) and suddenly she realized that we'd been talking for roughly thirty minutes (yup, about drugs) without knowing each others' names. "I'm Jenny. What's your name, dear?" she asked me. 

"Suzy," I said. 

"Okay," she said, nodding fervently, "Prairie Jenny, Prairie Suzy." 

Before I could respond (which was good, as I have no idea what I would've said), she turned to Barclay. "And yours?"

"Barclay," said Barclay. His eyes were slightly wider than usual but, to his credit, he looked mostly unfazed.

"Okay," she said. "Prairie Jenny, Prairie Suzy, Prairie Barclay. And your baby's?"

"Sullivan," I said. My voice was squeaky.

"Okay," said Prairie Jenny. "Prairie Jenny, Prairie Suzy, Prairie Barclay, Prairie Sullivan!"

And then she raised her hand in the air and waved it up and down. "Woof woof," she said.

My jaw doesn't often drop in real life. Most people's jaws don't actually drop, even though people are always writing that they do in books. Her jaw dropped. His jaw dropped. My jaw dropped. Their jaws dropped. Right then, though, I think my jaw might've come completely unhinged. My tongue and tonsils fell on the floor and my eyes popped out. Actually. Woof woof.

3. Death Cab for Cutie is coming to Regina in March. Barclay bought me tickets and I am so happy that my brains are shaking. There's a Death Cab song for almost every single major life event of my past decade; so much nostalgia. Nostalgia is the weirdest emotion ever. I love it.

There. Three things. That wasn't hard; maybe I'll be back again tomorrow.