Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Mean Girls

This is not a review of the movie "Mean Girls" (though that is an awesome movie). This is about an incident in my daughter's class that got me thinking about my own experiences with the mean girls.

My oldest daughter is in kindergarten, and I had hoped that we wouldn't have to deal with the Girl Wars until 4th Grade or so. But, apparently they start younger all the time. This is what happened. Adeline started out the year very friendly with a girl, who, for lack of a better word, is kind of intense. The other girl is very possessive about my daughter, doesn't like her to be friends with other people, etc. I actually emailed the teacher and asked her to move my daughter so that at least she could sit with other kids in the class. The teacher had noticed the situation developing and was more than happy to comply. Well, things flared up again recently, when Adeline had a play date at another friend's house. The intense girl got very upset and told my daughter that she wouldn't be friends with her anymore and that no one else liked her. My daughter handled it like a pro though, she told the intense girl "so what, I have other friends, I don't need to be friends only with you." Intense girl started to cry, my daughter went off and played with her friends. I know this won't be the last time that the Girl Wars occur. My Adeline is already at a disadvantage. She's tiny, the smallest kid in her class, at almost 6 years old, she's 38 inches tall and weighs just 37 lbs. She's also got knee length blond hair and blue eyes, so she sticks out in a school where 80% of the population is Hispanic or Black. As a result she's known by more kids than most. Older kids know her by name and talk to her already. If this continues, I know that it will be an issue. The other girls are going to be mean to her just out of spite. But, anyways, this incident got me thinking about my own experiences with the mean girls.

My Mean Girls experience was mostly in the 8th Grade. The town combined the Jr and Sr High Schools, so instead of having both a North and South High, there was just one High School, same as Jr High. The way the powers that be combined the schools was something of a clusterfuck. They unevenly balance the "teams," at least in the 8th Grade. Two of the teams were pretty equal in numbers from both North and South (but I have no idea who actually was on these teams, they may only exist in my mind). One team was majority South, with a few randoms from North (this is the team that everyone I grew up with wound up on), and the other team was mostly North with a few randoms from South (Me and three others in the classes that I took). I was on this team because the math teacher, Mrs Ciampa was supposed to be the best, and I was having problems with math. My Mom requested specifically that I be put on this team, setting me up for a sucky year. In addition, I had to take "Reading Skills" that year. But I screwed myself on that one. I kind of just filled in all C's for the reading assessment test at the end of the year before (Reading Skills was interesting, we read some pretty questionable stuff. Some Ray Bradbury stories that I now appreciate, but were pretty deep for 8th graders).

The 8th grade school year starts and I have No One in my classes that I'm friendly with. Not a single person. All of the girls in the class it seems have been together for years. One girl in particular seems to have it out for me (ironically, she'd become one of my better friends and we'd live together in college, but I digress), and is the biggest bitch in the world to me. No one talks to me, no one walks to classes with me. Nothing. At least I had people to sit with at lunch (Sandy and few other girls, including another one named Sandy if I remember right). It sucked, and I was miserable for the first three month of school. Finally, in mid-December or so a new girl came to the school and it was at last someone to at least talk to. It was easily the most angst filled time of my life. Sure, things improved once I had a friend (Thanks Melody!) in my classes. They really didn't get better until 9th Grade when at least I had Jessica and Heidi in my classes. But by then, I had built up this brittle shell around me and had a hard time making friends. I didn't speak much in High School at all. I should have. I would have, if I could have ever relaxed. I was always on guard, thinking that people were talking about me. Which is total crap. No one even knew I existed.

As an adult, it's hard for me to just go into a group setting and start talking to people. It was better in college. I kind of reinvented myself and realized that I really didn't care what people thought of me. I know who I am, and that's all that really matters. Take me at face value or take the time to get to know me. I'm a decent person. I'm funny. I'm quirky. I know tons of obscure trivia that makes me very useful in Trivial Pursuit or Jeopardy.

I'd like to apologize to anyone that I was a Mean Girl to. If I hurt you, bitched you out, or pretended you didn't exist, my bad. It was just my way of coping.

What Does Your IPod Say About You?

What Does Your Music Library Say About You??


1. Put Your iTunes on Shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.
3. You must write down the name of the song no matter how silly it sounds!
4. Put any comments in brackets after the song name.
5. Tag at least 10 friends


Need to preface this by saying that there are 4726 songs on our ipod, and its pretty much used as a server for our shuffles.

What do your friends think of you? Get in the Way- Tree (Maybe I'm not proactive enough? I have no clue)

If someone says, “Is this okay?” You say? Letter to a Friend- Shelter (Yes, I vent by writing emails to friends)

How would you describe yourself? Livin' & Rockin'- 311 (Yep, that's me, Livin' and Rockin')

What do you like in a guy/girl? Skungle- Pilfers (No idea)

How do you feel today? Just a Girl- No Doubt (Pretty apt. I am just a girl after all)

What is your life’s purpose? Skills to Pay the Bills- Beastie Boys (It is important to be able to afford the life that I have become accustomed to)

What is your motto? Apache- Sugar Hill Gang (No idea)

What do you think about very often? Live at E's- Sublime (No idea)

What is 2 + 2? Lucky- Radiohead (2+2 is an easy question, I guess that's lucky)

What do you think of your best friend? Brother John- Blues Traveler (cheeseball answer- yes, my best friend does have a brother John - looking at you Frank)

What do you think of the person you like? Homebrew- 311 (we did grow up in the same town)

What is your life story?So Much I- Red Hot Chili Peppers (It's incomplete? Who knows)

What do you want to be when you grow up? Wailing Paddle- The Rudiments (No idea)

What do you think of when you see the person you like? Bulldog Front- Fugazi (that's kind of mean)

What will you dance to at your wedding? (Nice Dream)- Radiohead- (Umm maybe?)

What will they play at your funeral? Gone, Gone, Gone- Carl Perkins (I shit you not, that's really what came up!)

What is your hobby/interest?Peephole- System of a Down (I guess I'm voyeristic. I do blogstalk people, that's kind of like looking through a peephole at someone)

What is your biggest fear? Mesa Town- Authority Zero (Yes, I guess Mesa can be pretty creepy. Lots of Mormons there)

What is your biggest secret? Stand Up- Street Dogs (I like to be ordered around? Not so much, I'm pretty Dom.)

What do you think of your friends? Tell Me Lies- Swingin' Utters (Liars and bitches, the bunch of ya!)

What will you post this as? Cielito Lindo- Voodoo Glow Skulls (No clue)

Again, there you have it. A lame blog with lame answers. Lots of random songs.

25 Things About Me

Once you’ve been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged . You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it’s because I want to know more about you.

1. I'm a really bad driver, but most of my accidents have been with inanimate objects, not other cars.

2. I have no sense of direction. It's so bad that if I leave my comfort zone, I have no idea where I am. Phoenix is a grid city, and I still get lost if I go more than 15 miles from my house. I can get lost in my hometown. I'll be heading to my sister-in-laws in Weymouth, and wind up at the CVS in Wollaston, and not know how I got there.

3. I'm not an emotional person. I don't get worked up about much. I don't cry that much about things that happen in real life (TV/movies make me cry). I don't bitch that much either.

4. I don't do religion.

5. I'm afraid of centipedes. All those legs are so freaking creepy.

6. I pick at scabs until they bleed, scab over and pick again. This is why I have tons of small scars on my arms, not because I'm a cutter.

7. I believe that steak should always be served barely cooked. Just toss it on the grill to warm up the outside and serve it up.

8. I love bad movies. Made for TV movies that show up on the encore channels on cable. Movies about big, evil animals. Natural disaster movies. Horrible hollywood movies that never should have been made (Dante's Peak, Deep Blue Sea)

9. I swear a lot. You know its bad when your kid (at age 3) yells at traffic- "Green means go asshole."

10. I use the word Dude a lot, probably too much. I've been known to call my boss dude.

11. I watch surgery shows on TV with my hand over my eyes. It's so gross, but I can't look away fully.

12. My closest friends I've known since elementary school and Jr. high. Some of them were pretty mean in Jr. high, but I've moved past that. (Looking at you Andrea)

13. I bite my nails.

14. I know the guy who blew up the shark at the end of Jaws. He's a a blaster from Quincy, and married to my Mom's best friend.

15. I don't have a lot of empathy. For example, when hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, the first thing i thought was "what do you expect? you live under the sea level, in an area where hurricanes happen. Serves you right." I guess that means I don't have a lot of sympathy either.

16. I haven't lived with my parents since I was 20.

17. My husband and I are basically the same height. So I can't wear heels when we go out.

18. Which is sad, because I really love black high heel boots.

19. Once a year or so I give into the need to take my hair red, and it always ends badly, with me getting pink or orange hair as a result.

20. I can't have any more children.

21. I got two tattoos when I turned 18, and hid them until I was 22 and buying a wedding dress.

22. I prefer a stick shift to an automatic transmission.

23. I'm really good at memorizing social security numbers. A total useless skill in the real world.

24. I have no idea what my license plate number is, don't know the zip code where I work, or the main line number for my job, but damnit, I remember I graduated 30th in my high school class.

25. I'm not afraid of death, but I am scared that I'll outlive my kids.

So there you have it. There are probably a lot more things that I could think of, but these were the first 25 that came to mind. I'm a sharer I guess. I'll tell anyone who wants to listen my whole life story.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Wall Art

A few weeks ago, while I was in negligent mother mode (aka playing with Facebook or something similar), I left the children alone downstairs. They were rather quiet, which is unlike them. Usually World War III threatens to break out at any given moment. So, after about 10 minutes of quiet, I yelled down to the Axis of Evil to find out what they were doing. Anaya tells me that they're coloring. OK, good, no problem there. Then I ask "What are you coloring?" Adeline tells me "Me and Anaya are coloring on paper, but Avery is coloring on the walls." I cringe. Send up a quick wish that she's not using marker, and go downstairs to investigate. I find the following artwork marked on all four sides of the pillar in our dining room:

As you can see, it's crayon, thankfully. And, because housework isn't one of my better qualities, it's still up on the pillar. Mom's best friend, the Mr Clean Magic Eraser will be able to get rid of that in no time at all, now I just need to find Mr Clean.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Saturday Rituals

This post is based on an idea from an email from a book group that I belong to.

What is your Saturday morning ritual? How has it changed over the years? Do you even have one?

Growing up, Saturday morning was not my favorite time of the week. We (the kids in the family) all had paper routes, and therefore had to do the early morning delivery on Saturday. My Mom would have us up by 6:30-7:00 and piled in the back of the station wagon so we could get the papers out. In a totally unsafe, but never questioned maneuver, we’d drive the route slowly, with the back of the station wagon down, and us jumping on and off to deliver the papers. In the four years that we had the route, we were never pulled over by the cops, so obviously it was accepted. Then, after the route in the spring and fall, there would be at least one, but sometimes two or three soccer games. As we got older the games moved to Sunday morning, but in elementary and middle school, the games were on Saturday. We’d get home from that and my Dad would make breakfast, omelets most of the time. As we were raised UCC Protestant, our church was on Sunday, and not Saturday afternoon, like the majority of my Catholic friends.

In high school I worked for CVS and usually was the closer on Saturday night, so I could sleep in. Sometimes I’d have to get up and go to a soccer game for a sibling, but that was it.

In college, Saturday mornings were spent in bed with my boyfriend. We’d typically go out on Friday nights, come in early on Saturday morning, and sleep in until 11:00 or later. Then get up and find something to eat. When we got an apartment together, he started working weekends, so I’d be left alone in our apartment, and would use that as my day to get the grocery shopping done and put the laundry together for him to take on Sunday. On Saturdays when he wasn’t working, we’d walk up to Sicilia Pizza, get something to eat and then watch movies for the rest of the afternoon.

Saturdays with kids aren’t so relaxing. Frank works 90% of them, so I usually let him sleep until 10:00 when he needs to get up to get ready for work. I get up with the kids, between 7:30 and 8:00. The older two know to get up on their own, go downstairs, and watch TV. They’ve even progressed to the point where they can get a drink and something to eat (junk most of the time, but it keeps them quiet). Avery is still in diapers and she’s soaked in the mornings, so when she gets up, I need to as well. I’ll get her changed, and the day starts for real. I cook breakfast- pancakes or eggs. We watch some TV. The beds get stripped and sheets are thrown into the wash. We’ll usually head to the park after Avery’s nap. Even the local park is a break from being in the house, and after about four hours alone with the kids in the house, I need to get out. I’m not the most patient Mom in the world, so Saturdays can be a day of chaos. If anyone is in a bad mood, it festers and grows until we’re all in crappy moods. The kids pick on each other, and it’s always two against one, though the teams change minute to minute. Adeline is getting near the age where she wants friends to come over on Saturdays, and I’m just not ready for entertaining kids on a weekly basis. We don't do religion, so there's no religious obligations that need to be met on either of the weekend days.