Friday, September 11, 2009

Post 13: Like Seriously with the Likes

If you're a friend of mine on Facebook, you most likely saw the video that my good friend, SKB, posted of Zygote doing...well, nothing. Zygote is staring, immobile, and SKB and I are talking in the background. SBK is, as usual, hilarious and in between my own daily 5 minutes of funniness, I noticed a horrible, glaring defect. Like a totally awful defect like. Like it was totally like gross.

My love of "like."

I've long known that I use the word "like" way too often. I took a public speaking class to try and help with it and I try to catch myself. But it always slips in. "Like" has replaced "said" in almost all my stories and it's become a replacement for all my other "ums," "uhs" and "ya knows." I was hoping that people couldn't notice, or that if they did, they were so utterly taken with my wit and charm that they let it slide.

Then I saw that video, and holy shit, am I mortified. I sound RIDICULOUS. I am 33 years old and I used the phrase "like, oh my god" for real. I have a Masters Degree. In Communications. Something is not right here.

I asked YG for his opinion on me and my likes, and when his response was "honestly?" I knew that I have a serious problem here. He says that it is fairly rampant, but because I make up for it with that aforementioned wit and charm, it's just one more of my lovable quirks. Hmmmm....He says he notices it most when I "prattle." Hmmm again. He's not an asshole, and even if I tried, there's no way I could convince the world that Mr. Eagle Scout/Good Citizen of the World YG was an asshole. I appreciate him because he will give an honest opinion, and when he says that I should work on something because it could be holding me back, I know it's the truth.

So...I'm working on it. And it's hard. Now I stop talking when I catch a "like" so instead of just sounding like an idiot, I now sound like an idiot with a speech impediment. Progress, not perfection.

The world would be so much easier if I didn't need to communicate with other humans.

Post 12: Three Months and 9/11

Zygote is three months old today. It seems weird to celebrate on a date that will always be associated with something bad. More on that in a bit.

First, Zygote is fabulous. She has grown into an engaging little person that I enjoy spending time with. She has crazy big eyes that follow you around a room, and even though I know it's not possible, I imagine that we are communicating when we stare at each other -- that we GET each other. She likes grabbing at things, especially her purple dinosaur, and everything goes immediately into her mouth. I suspect that my laissez faire attitude about germ prevention is going to have to change soon or else she's going to end up with Ebola or some other insane disease. We still go for walks every day and have a routine where we walk down to Harvard Square, browse the bookstores, get a cupcake and then have a feed on Cambridge Common. I'm sad that this will change once the weather gets colder and I have to go back to work. We've traveled quite a bit with her and she mainly sleeps in the car, but will kick her feet a bit when the music plays. The Beatles are a favorite, along with Fiona Apple and Cat Power. She screams when she's tired and hungry, and well, so do I. Or I wish I could. Basically, I love her to pieces and can't imagine her changing, but I'm looking forward to those changes too.

Second, her three month anniversary marks the 8 year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. It's hard to imagine that my child will have no understanding of a pre 9/11 world. YG said the other night, "I hate the post 9/11 world."

I was watching the coverage this morning and had to turn it off. It was always devastating, but now, having Zygote and imagining all those people who lost their feels different. I couldn't quite handle it.

I'm back in Whippany again which is where I was on 9/11. I was living in Brooklyn at the time and had made it in to work to watch everything unfold on t.v. I couldn't get back to my apartment so I stayed in Whippany, waiting in the house by myself until my parents came home.

I tried to write a story about my experience of that day for one of my classes, but the feedback that I got was that I lost my voice -- that it wasn't funny and it wasn't me. I have a really hard time trying to figure out how you write a funny 9/11 story, but when the teacher asked me why I chose to wrote about 9/11, I told her that this dumb fuck that I work with was chastizing me for allowing the MG to ride the T because "you know, 9/11." I guess I was extremely animated in retelling the story and how I tore this woman a new one, and the teacher suggested I write about that or at least my animosity toward a certain breed of suburban woman who won't allow her child to play in the yard or take a dump by himself lest there be terrorists lurking around somewhere. I don't know. It still seems wrong. It seems wrong to even write about it here.

I do know that I will never forget, and maybe that's all that is important. I don't need to retell it.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Post 11: Birthday Weekend

For someone feeling kind of maudlin at the start of the weekend, it ended up being fab.

Zygote's present to me was sleeping until 5:30 on Friday night, allowing me to function unlike the walking dead on my actual birthday. We packed up the car and headed out to Walden Pond where we found a spot under the trees. YG and I took turns laying on the blanket, playing with Z and reading, and swimming in the water with the MG. It was a perfect summer day -- blue sky, not too hot and the water temperature was "warm" by New England standards. I left feeling warm and freckly, my favorite summer feeling.

After returning home, YG took the girls out for a walk and I went and got a pedicure, a screaming pink color. The woman at the salon remembered that I was getting a I'm-going-to-have-a-baby pedicure the last time I visited and told me how nice I looked. Win! I spent the rest of the afternoon in a quiet house, journaling and drinking wine. YG and the girls came home with a bouquet of sunflowers and hydrangea (my favorite) and we went out for Indian food and people watching in the Square. Followed by cupcakes and the MG's presents at home. She gave me a beautiful pair of earrings and a "to-do list" pad, a gift after my own heart. YG's present would come later.

On Sunday morning, YG gave me time to get in a 2.5 mile run before church and brunch. His sister came over for babysitting duties at 2:30, and he wisked me off to my surprise destination. I asked what we were doing. His response, "what are two of your favorite things?" Well, eating, obviously, and shopping. It pains me to write that. I feel like I should say that my favorite things include visiting art galleries and attending poetry readings and debating philosophy with my professorial friends. And, true, I do like those things, but dudes, I'm from Jersey. I LOVE the mall.

So, we went to the mall, or the Boston equivalent, the Prudential Center. YG knew that I needed a dress for his sister's upcoming wedding and some back-to-work clothes. Most of my clothing post-Zygote is weirdly ill-fitted, and I was hating on my mom pooch and hips and anything else I could think of to bitch about. He escorted me from store to store, helping me pick out dresses, sitting patiently while I tried them on and offering decent advice. We left with one beautiful Calvin Klein dress for the wedding, a pair of jeans sans elastic waist band, a courderoy blazer, two sweaters and a scarf. I was giddy, and felt good about myself. He really is the best gift giver ever.

We had martinis and then dinner at Top of the Hub and were back home by 8:30 p.m. Not a rock star evening, but a great one regardless.

Today, he went biking and I went running again and we took the girls out for lunch again. Now we're all just lounging around, basking in hangover of a long weekend.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

This Is What A Relationship Looks Like: Accent Edition

Lying in bed, playing with Zygote, who is immune to all of our tactics to make her laugh:

SG: Z, why are you so humorless this morning?
(Z stares)
YG: Because she's missing the "h" in humorless.