Thursday, May 15, 2008

In One Second, Flat

Yesterday morning as I drove my son to school, I saw a woman and a dog out for a walk. We live near a lake and a large apartment complex, so we see a fairly constant parade of dogs and their owners, both local and visiting from other neighborhoods, on our street at any time of day.

The woman and her adorable little Maltese-type dog waited at the corner for the light to turn green. My son and I also waited at the light. The woman got the walk sign first and proceeded to cross the street, and I realized her dog wasn't on a leash. Not only that, but the dog was sniffing something on the corner and wasn't paying attention to its owner, who was halfway across the street. The dog suddenly raced to catch up...and went under the car of a driver turning right on the red light.

I screamed and covered my mouth, and my son, who hadn't seen it, kept asking me what was wrong.

But an amazing thing happened. The dog went between the front tires of the car and managed to dodge the back tires as well, then ran across the street to its owner. All of the other drivers had stopped in shock. I think a couple honked their horns.

And was the woman concerned? No. She was just annoyed that people were honking their horns and staring at her. I'm still astonished that she would walk her dog without a leash in a high-traffic neighborhood. The driver who almost hit the dog wasn't in the wrong; she just couldn't see the tiny dog scamper off the curb. The dog owner was dreadfully irresponsible and thoughtless, and the driver was shaken. (She had to stop and pull herself together.)

I dropped my son off at school, then drove around the block to see if I could find the woman. I was still pretty full of adrenaline and had a couple of things I wanted to say to her. Lucky for her, I didn't find her. But if I see her again with her dog unleashed, I may pull over for a chat -- a more civilized one than the one we might have had if I'd found her yesterday.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Why I Try, I Don't Know

Other mom's kid: "Mom, do you have any gum?"

Other mom: "No."

Me: "I think I have some." (unzipping purse)

Other mom: "No! That's okay! She's talking about the gum with xylitol--"

Other mom's kid: "...that's, like, really good for your teeth and stuff--"

Other mom: "...which is the only kind we let them chew."

Me: "Oh, sorry. I brought only the very bad, poisonous gum* that turns your teeth black and makes you vote Republican."

Except I didn't say that. I just sort of smiled and nodded while I zipped up my purse and held it on my lap like a dork. I think this is the third time I've accidentally assumed this family was maybe the tiniest bit like mine and been proven wrong. Previous encounters include giving the kids a snack and hearing their parents loudly and repeatedly forbid them to eat it, and asking whether one of them took medicine for a particular ailment and being told (once again loudly) absolutely not. And you know, it's not that I don't appreciate that other families do certain things differently. I get that. I think what startles me is the ever-so-slightly preachy or protesting tone that colors the unsolicited explanations of their choices.

I'm off to chew my formaldehyde-flavored gum now. I found it under a chair and have been looking forward to it all day.

* The gum in my purse was sugarless. However, it was not magic. Ah, I jest, I jest. ;-)

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Bits and Pieces

While watching my son's baseball game, a black beetle (some call them stinkbugs, but I think they're not that exactly) landed on my elbow. Cue the squealing and stomping. Actually, the mom standing next to me stomped on my foot in an effort to help me kill the bug. She was mortified, but I was fine. I would've felt a tad guilty about killing a harmless bug for no good reason, but it was the third one I'd encountered (two had crawled across my sandal-clad feet in two different locations last weekend -- one at my son's baseball game, and one at the Padres game) and I'm just SO DONE WITH THEM.


I had plans for this weekend, but apparently my body had other plans, so I spent most of the weekend (after watching my son's game) lying around on the couch and watching TV in between taking naps and eating. After the nonstop schedule we've had for the past couple of months, I think a couch potato weekend was in order.


When I told my son that next weekend is Mother's Day, he said, "I need to get you a present!" I told him I'd also be very happy if he wrote me a nice letter. "Hmm," he said. "How about a sentence?"


I'm looking forward to going to work tomorrow. Does that sound funny? When I used to work in aerospace, I spent many mornings crying as I drove to work because aerospace was so soul-sucking. At the place where I work now, the people are fabulous and warm and I just love them. of my co-workers, Miss H., has crazy dreams all the time and is always happy to share them. It's very entertaining. Of course, she's a devout Christian, so I don't feel like I can reciprocate by telling her about my wild sex dreams. ;^)


How can I still be tired when I spent all day doing nothing? I guess it's possible to have too much sleep. Good thing this week's schedule won't allow for that. Ahem. ;^)