Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Now say it again with less accent!

This is Luke.

He is my 5-year-old son. He is ridiculously smart. I know as a mom, I am legally obligated to tell you that, even if he had the i.q. of a sweet potato, but really he is incredibly bright.

He's been doing addition, subtraction, and multiplication since he was 4. He has recently added to the mix some division, algebra, and square roots. (Can you understand how much trouble I am in as a bearer of a Bachelor of Arts, English major degree? Math is sooo beyond me.) But that's not what I'm writing about today.

Luke started kindergarten this year. That was a big life change for him, but something else has changed as well. His accent has gone so far off the deep end, that we make him say stuff just for the chance to laugh at him. He's always had a little bit of an accent. Being a Southern boy by the grace of God, he has that certain twang. That twang is now more resounding, like a gong.

I don't know if it's a thing like Madonna going to England and suddenly becoming British or what, but I am beginning to think that his teacher or his friends MUST have that Larry the Cable Guy accent because I know that he isn't hearing it at home. His big sister, Emma (who is 8 and knows everything there is to know about everything, thankyouverymuch), has even noticed it and points it out--in that certain "loving" way that only a big sister can muster.

Now anyone that knows me is aware of how far I've come from my first days at BSC. I was not all that far removed from Ellie Mae Clampett as far as accent goes.
(I.E., My speech at high school graduation was immortalized on videotape for my embarrassment. It begins, "Waaay, the clayuss of nun-teen-hundred-and nun-ty-thray are beganning our jurr-neee into tha fuu-cher." Forrest Gump would've been proud.) I have hope that Luke will also one day be able to speak to people from north of the Mason-Dixon without a translator.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Top 10 Christmas songs that AREN'T

I know I probably shouldn't, but I've been listening to Christmas music for about a week and a half now. I am feeling SO festive and merry, so it seems to be working! This is the least grinchy I've felt in a while...

So, I've been noticing that there are a certain number of Christmas songs that turn my stomach and make me want to jump off a bridge, if only just a little. In my opinion, they are Christmas songs that don't deserve to be Christmas songs. They are (in no particular order):

10. "A Wonderful Christmas Time"--Paul McCartney--I'll say this first. I am NOT a Beatles fan, so maybe if ANYONE else on planet Earth sang this, I might like it better, but with lyrics like these, I am not sure: "Ding, dong, ding, dong Ding, dong, ding, dong The mood is right The spirits up We're here tonight And that's enough Simply having a wonderful Christmas time ..." No, Paul, that's not going to be enough.

9. "Please, Daddy (Don't Get Drunk This Christmas)"--John Denver--Admittedly, I've never heard this one, but it deserved an honorable mention just for the title alone.

8. "Do They Know It's Christmas?"--Band Aid--Now everyone in 1984 was feeling the love for the starving
people in Africa. Heck, if they'd asked me to join in and sing with them and hold hands across the nation and wear jelly shoes, I would've. But that was in 1984. I still appreciate many of the artists that performed on this song (Read: Bono), but I get depressed listening to it. I quote, "Thank God it's them instead of you." That makes me hungry for some figgy pudding.

7. "River"--Joni Mitchell--She wishes she had a river to skate on, long enough
so she could fly. I wish she could've skated or flew back to wherever it is she came from before she released this monstrosity. I get majorly grouchy when this sap-filled, whiny ballad slides out of the speakers.

6. "
Happy Christmas (War is Over)"--John Lennon/Yoko Ono--ANOTHER Beatles Christmas song. ACK. Might've been better without Yoko.

5. "Grandma Got Runover by a Reindeer"--Elmo and Patsy--Now, I know I am going to be ostracized and
possibly removed from my family for this one. Seriously, though, how am I supposed to explain to my kids that in this song Grandma is a homicide victim on top of the fact that Santa's her killer and she's a drunk?!? It's got a good beat, but the message is horrible to dance to.

4. "This Christmas"--Macy Gray--Now, I really didn't like this song before she got
a hold of it, since it had too
much of a Marvin Gaye/Barry White kind of feel to it. THAT is not what Christmas makes me think about... But when Macy Gray butchered it....oh...I need antacid. And she needs a lozenge. When she croaks out the line about "we're caroling, thru the niiiiiii--hiiiiiite," I die a little inside thinking about her poor neighbors.

3. "Last Christmas"--George Michael--I've never noticed I had a problem with both "This" and "Last" Christmases before...anyhow, I actually DO like this song. My problem is with the singer, not the song. I enjoy the lyrics: "Last Christmas, I gave you my heart, But the very next day, You gave it away." How can you NOT like a song about re-gifting? I digress. George Michael is to Christmas music what Amy Winehouse is to Rehab. It just doesn't work.

2. "Christmas to Remember"--Dolly Parton/Kenny Rogers--Personally, I would like to forget this one was ever written. It's so twangy and sappy that it gives me cavities. I warn you, the lyrics will put it in your head if you've heard it more than once:

"You've made this a Christmas to remember
Springtime feelings in the middle of December
Strangers meet and willingly surrender
Oh, oh, what a Christmas to remember.

Almost went to Aspen but something told me no
I considered Mammoth but there wasn't enough snow
And I even thought of Gatlinburg but that seemed so far to go
So I headed up to Tahoe for a Christmas on the slopes.

And I had fantasized about Christmas in this way
Curled up by a fireplace in a Tahoe ski chalet
With a fast talking lover with some slow burning wood
But even in my wildest dreams it never got this good.

And you've made this a Christmas to remember
Springtime feelins in the middle of December
Change the radio and I'll turn the lights down dimmer
Oh, oh, what a Christmas to remember.

Strangers when we met lovers as we leave
Christmas to remember too good to believe
Don't know how it went but I know we'll meet again
We'll come blowin' back to somewhere
Like some wild restless winter's wind.

You've made this a Christmas to remember
Springtime feelins in the middle of December
'Neath the mistletoe you kissed me warm and tender
Oh, oh, what a Christmas to remember.

We loved and laughed and played and joked
Sang Christmas songs and talked to folks
Sleighed the fields and skied the slopes then to the lodge for dinner
But now it's time for us to go as our hearts melt like chimney snow
There's just one thing I want to know can we do this next winter?"

Just go back to the "Islands in the Stream," Dolly and Kenny. Please.

1. "Same Old Lang Syne"--Dan Fogelberg--Technically, this IS, in my humble opinion, the WORST SONG EVER to pose as a Christmas song. Title doesn't ring a bell? Well, the words will. Try to think of them in the whiniest voice ever heard. Here are all the lyrics, in their shameful glory:

"Met my old lover in the grocery store
The snow was falling Christmas Eve
I stole behind her in the frozen foods
And I touched her on the sleeve

She didn't recognize the face at first
But then her eyes flew open wide
She went to hug me and she spilled her purse
And we laughed until we cried

We took her groceries to the checkout stand
The food was totaled up and bagged
We stood there lost in our embarrassment
As the conversation dragged

Went to have ourselves a drink or two
But couldn't find an open bar
We bought a six-pack at the liquor store
And we drank it in her car

We drank a toast to innocence
We drank a toast to now
And tried to reach beyond the emptiness
But neither one knew how

She said she'd married her an architect
Who kept her warm and safe and dry
She would have liked to say she loved the man
But she didn't like to lie

I said the years had been a friend to her
And that her eyes were still as blue
But in those eyes I wasn't sure if I
Saw doubt or gratitude

She said she saw me in the record stores
And that I must be doing well
I said the audience was heavenly
But the traveling was hell

We drank a toast to innocence
We drank a toast to now
And tried to reach beyond the emptiness
But neither one knew how

We drank a toast to innocence
We drank a toast to time
Reliving in our eloquence
Another 'auld lang syne'

The beer was empty and our tongues were tired
And running out of things to say
She gave a kiss to me as I got out
And I watched her drive away

Just for a moment I was back at school
And felt that old familiar pain
And as I turned to make my way back home
The snow turned into rain"

Okay, the first thing that makes my skin flee from my frame is him calling his ex-girlfriend his "lover." WHO SAYS THAT? No one other than that guy on the "SNL" skit! (You know the one, right?)

Maybe people who live in colonies and listen to John Lennon/Yoko Ono music and hope to find a river to skate away on, but not normal folks! Next, Christmas music is about holly, tinsel, snowmen, Baby Jesus, chestnuts, Rudolph, Santa, Mary, hippopotamusesesesesessss, and missing front teeth.

Christmas music is categorically NOT about stalking an ex-girlfriend next to the Eggo waffles; loveless marriages; they do not reference liquor stores, bars, or beer;
they do not have a word in it that you don't let your kids say! This is not a Christmas song!!!! Who decided that it was? Oh, I know...the same guy that thought that "Born in the U.S.A." was a patriotic song. I get it. A dumb guy.

Rant complete. Feel free to defend your favorite. :D

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Old pants ARE the enemy.

Not long ago I put on a pair of jeans that had been put in storage before my daughter, Emma, was born (probably since I got married in 1999--love does strange things to your waistline). Anyhow, since I've lost weight this year, I thought, "Hey, more clothes. That's always good!" So I get them out, look at the label which reads "Lerner New York." Hmmm...they haven't been Lerner New York since I was in college(1993-97), so these were honest-to-goodness college jeans! Yes!!!

So I put them on.

Apparently we were only about 1 step up from stonewashing/acid-washing jeans in 1996-97.

Bon Jovi would've approved of these jeans. The color was monstrous.
It was not a shade even found in the 96 crayon Crayola box that my children own.

Oh, it's all well and good that they fit, but who wants to look like they stepped out of a Dave Matthews video, really? Oh well.

I suppose this means I must shop for new jeans. Woe is me.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Ooh, aah. This is what a blog looks like. Hmm...okay so we need stuff here. White space scares me.

Okay, so I'll start with the name I chose for the blog, "Socks are NOT the enemy." For some reason, my chihuahua, Tootie, finds socks on my feet-or anyone else's for that matter--to be extremely offensive. Upon first sight of socks, she goes nuts. She starts biting, pouncing, chasing, and generally, just makes herself a nuisance to my socks.

Now, if said socks were inside a shoe, all would be good. It's the ones that have escaped the relative safety of the shoe that are a direct threat to all she holds dear. Socks lying harmlessly on stairs are in no way perceived as a terrorist action in her opinion.

Now, I have a total and utter fear of feet. Feet are gross, nasty, sweaty, stinky, and dirty. I don't think Tootie has a problem with feet. To me, socky feet are equally as disgusting as non-socky feet, so I don't know what the difference is to her.

Granted, I could probably stick her inside some of my husband's socks, and she'd never find her way out. Maybe that's what she's doing. Maybe she is trying to free some of her fellow countrymen from their wriggling, stinky death bags. Or maybe she's just psycho. Whatever.