Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A Really, Really Great (True) Love Story and It Isn't Even Mine. And also some random stuff.

Last week was busy. My calendar is full in September. And October. And then I have this little thing written on November 4, and NOTHING else. 8 more weeks! I can see the light!

Okay. So last week was busy because it was a symphony week . . . rehearsal, rehearsal, rehearsal, concert, concert. Not terrible, but only because it only happens six times a year.

We begin every season with a pops concert -- last year, all Cole Porter; two years ago, Gershwin; three years ago, I think it was Broadway. Fun stuff, especially if you're old enough to remember who Cole Porter was without watching De-Lovely.

This year, the program was all Irving Berlin. Generally, I don't love playing these concerts because the viola parts are, um, less than challenging, unless you're incapable of feeling off-beats. But we always have great singers, and the songs are familiar, and the audience leaves happy, so I usually come out of it with some degree of satisfaction as well. And a paycheck. Which helps.

Can I just say that I had no idea Irving Berlin wrote so much music? Seriously. We have him to thank for such perennial classics as "White Christmas" and "God Bless America". But there's so, so, so much more! I did some research and I think I have a retroactive crush on a man who died at the ripe old age of 101 -- just as I was entering puberty.

How could you not love a man who, when his sweetheart was disowned by her Catholic telegraph magnate father for marrying a Jewish immigrant upstart with no background, signed over the rights to the song he knew would be a sure hit? Because that's exactly what he did. He wrote "Always" when they fell in love. And all royalties from that song, played in a million different places a million different times, went to her as well. He made sure that even if something happened to him, or their union did not last they way they thought it would, she would not be left without means because she decided to marry him.

He wrote "Blue Skies" (smilin' at me . . . you know this one!) to celebrate the birth of their first child. Read the words. You'll love the song more now that you know why he wrote it. Same goes for "Always". I was the first to fall when CPod and I first met, but if it had been the other way around, he couldn't have missed with lyrics like those.

Irving Berlin died in 1989. He was 101. His wife died the year before. They were married for 63 years -- inseparable until the very end. That, my friends, is a love story.


In other news, my refrigerator fried my hairdryer tonight. Lately, the water dispenser in our refrigerator keeps freezing up. And the only way to get the water moving again is to open the freezer door and heat the panel up with a hairdryer. It takes a while, so I pulled up a chair. I was talking with CPod while he leaned on the counter and then all of a sudden I was holding a blowtorch. I guess I should count my blessings. I could have been actually drying my hair when the appliance in question decided to melt down. Frizzy, curly hair I'm okay with. Fried? Not so much.


I'm nesting. Intensely.

Right now, my living room looks like a tornado hit the little girls' section of a children's clothing store and dumped it's entire contents in front of the fireplace. I'm sorting all the clothes given to me by my sister (I mean loaned) and another friend and, of course, the things I've purchased.

I have to say, I've never before bought tights for anyone but myself. It's a brave new world, friends. A brave new world.


Does anyone know how to get little boys to AIM? Please don't say Cheerios. You'd be surprised how my children define "edible". I think if I have to wipe a puddle of pee off of the floor or the little place on the side of the toilet where urine likes to collect ONE MORE TIME I am going to buy a really huge litter box for the back porch. Yes, CPod does the toilets. But not hourly. Maybe what I need is one of those little sign-in sheets you see in fast food restaurant bathrooms: initial here when you've inspected the toilet. Except the only initials would be mine, scrawled in ever-bolder and angrier strokes as the day wore on.

One day last week I caught ConMan "aiming" with his non-dominant right hand while holding a tootsie pop with his left. Really? I mean, get your priorities in order, son.

I think I'm going to start locking the door to my bathroom (maybe even to CPod) lest the throne in there should be defiled in the same heinous manner.

Indeed, something must remain sacred.


  1. I love that story about Irving Berlin. You're absolutely right. A true love story.

  2. Boys don't aim. Ever. They write their names and pretend they're Jedi knights with light sabers and generally make the most disgusting messes for all of their days. I'm sorry, but you needed to know the truth.

    And I love Irving Berlin. Thank you for sharing his story.

  3. My son is going to be 10 this month and his bathroom still smells like pee. I can't see it but I can smell it.

    So weird. Boys are just weird.

  4. Beautiful love story!!!

    Keep up with the nesting. I'm glad you enjoy buying tights, because they will always have runs in them and you will forever be buying new ones!

    I have a friend that swears by putting one square of toilet paper in the John and telling them to sink it.

    My solution: My husband taught my boys that there are toilets that you stand at, and toilets that you sit on and you can tell them apart just by looking. He taught them to always sit unless it was a urinal. I had no idea what I gift he had given me until I heard other mothers of boys complaining about the continual mess. Then I thanked him profusely!

  5. I loce you. That is all. This post was very you. ;)

  6. I love Blue Skies! It was my Nana's favorite song! She had the cassette and we listened to it in her car over and over again. When she passed away all the family sang it at her funeral.

    Jake has always been pretty good at aiming (we did the whole cheerios thing)! But, just in case he missed, I have Clorox wipes in the bathroom and he cleans it. I have been doing this since he was potty trained when he was not quite 2 1/2. It is one of his chores to clean his sink and toilet. We have one of those toilet bowl cleaners in his bathroom that has the disposable heads and he LOVES it! I do inspect it of course and he knows he has to do it again if it doesn't pass my test. If he knows he is the one to clean it it doesn't seem to get as messy...Try it seriously! Your boys will love it too. Boys love to make their Mommies proud.

  7. I'm laughing hysterically at the tootsie pop story! And trying not to think about the day when it will be my turn to live with potty-time antics of a little boy. :)

  8. simply hilarious.

    I banned my son from standing while peeing until he can improve his aim. He has to sit now.

  9. My big boy (AKA HUBBY) still has problems with aim. I had some magizine sitting next to the toilet and he moved them and told me, unless I want them sprinkled with pee, they need to be somewhere else. Seriously??!!

  10. Haven't had the problem on aiming YET ... may be is because he pees outside a lot ... total white trash, I KNOW! What can I say, I have blended so well in my new culture ... ha ha ha.

    In all seriousness though ... we haven't miss the toilet bowl yet but I know it's coming, I can see him moving from side to side when he pees every once in a while. No suggestion on that topic, sorry :(

    Yay for nesting, that's a fun and exhausting time but what's not exhausting about pregnancy and work =)

    I'm so glad the hairdryer died while working on fridge and not your hair ... God was watching over you - as always -

  11. I'll have Irving Berlin going through my head all day now. What a wonderful story. *sniff*

    (And no, boys never, ever learn to aim. My son is 14 and the far side of the toilet STILL ends up yellow. I can't figure it out.)

  12. Well, everything I was going to say has pretty much been covered by everyone else. So I'll just say, Hi! And I'm so excited you are having a little girl :)

  13. I've heard stories of bulls' eyes painted at the bottom of toilets being helpful...

    And I just ADORE Irving Berlin (and Cole Porter and Gershwin too, come to that). I'm going to try to find Blue Skies now...I've a sudden itch to listen to it.

  14. I wish I could say it gets better with age, but coleman still manages to get it on the wall, etc. He tries to blame it on the girls, but I'm not buying it!!!

    Are you having the baby on the 4th or is that just your due date? Ruby was born on the 4th, it's a good day!!

  15. I don't know which made me laugh harder: the tootsie roll pop or DeNae's comment.

    My boys are 2 and 10 months. You are not giving me anything to look forward to here. . .

  16. Yeah, my Dad has to move his magazine section in his bathroom when my son is over there. I think your problem is that it's multiplied by 3! At least your little girl will bring some balance to the force!

  17. Great love story. Thanks for educating me.
    I'm now also scared for little man to grow up.
    And crazy dryer! Glad your hair is safe.
    Little girl clothes are so fun. enjoy.

  18. I have four potty trained boys. I just avoid going into their bathroom unless I'm wearing a biohazard suit.

  19. I can't guarantee results, but you might try a single square of toilet paper. They can try to sink it and it's big enough to be pretty easy to hit.

  20. I walked in on my three year old recently and he wasn't even holding anything, so the fact that you had one holding even with his non-dominant hand is one step ahead of me.

    I put it all on Faramir, and I remind him frequently that he needs to be the one teaching.

    If that doesn't get better soon then my boys are going to start cleaning.

  21. I didn't know you play in a symphony orchestra. How cool!

    And that was quite a love story.

    But what I really must add here is that I have the perfect way to teach boys to aim. I know your boys are younger than mine, but we've been doing this for years. Mr. Cool (age 10) is in charge of keeping the bathroom on the main floor clean and presentable. I bought him a packet of Method wipes for quick spills, and I also let him choose his own cleaning chemicals for the big Saturday clean. He does it willingly and excellently. And whenever a guest asks to use the bathroom, I just say, "Mr. Cool, will you go check that toilet seat?" and all is well.

    Seriously, you clean up enough spills and you get that aiming thing down!

  22. As a fellow mommy violist, I can echo your sentiments when you wonder why you are running around crazily on a concert week just to go play "uhm-chucks"--but the audience sure loves it!

    I'm also seriously curly-haired and had a blow dryer catch fire when a college roommate was attempting to straighten my hair--never tried that again!

    Thanks for the random post--found it on BlogHer--and for listening to my random coincidences!


Sock it to me!