Saturday, September 17, 2005

Assorted Alex: The Last 24 Hours

He's been in rare form lately. First off, I actually had to speak this sentence to the grown man yesterday morning: "Please stop putting your shorts on the dog's head."

NEXT: (and this is a long setup for a short joke, but I can't help it), on our way to the shrink yesterday (for me, update below*), we were discussing the upcoming slaughter of our beloved Razorbacks at the hands of the USC Trojans. Now, all I really know about the Trojans is that their marching band was featured on Fleetwood Mac's "Tusk"nearly 30 years ago, because my mom, she loved her some Fleetwood Mac, and had all the albums (she had ALL the cool music), and especially liked that song. If you don't know it because you were a zygote back then (thanks, Greg), check it out. Download it. It's SO good.

So I wasn't even aware of their mascot--a mounted Trojan warrior on a snow-white horse named Traveler(I Googled and found out the last Traveler was an Arabian (first pic), as is the Denver Broncos' mascot Thunder, but the current one, I think by looking, must be an Andalusian.) Apparently, whenever USC scores a touchdown, Traveler and his rider make a galloping lap around the "coliseum" (I think that's really what they call it at USC; at least I saw several references to it as that). Check him out--I mean, that's one gorgeous animal, and it's got to get the crowd, and therefore the team, really psyched when he comes galloping out in all his snow-white masculine symbolism.

So, Alex's comment about how this game is gonna go (it's accepted that it will be a massacre, and some Trojans will be feasting on them some roast Hog this evening--I think the spread is up to 34 points now), was this: "You know that mascot of theirs that runs around the arena every time they score?" (I didn't; He filled me in) "I'll just put it this way--that poor horse is gonna be WORN OUT. By the end of the second quarter, it's gonna be looking like that scene from [the very bad movie] 'Hidalgo'." I laughed for, like, 5 solid minutes over that. If you're not laughing now, I promise it was funny at the time.

NEXT: After the appointment, we went back to our office, and there were some lot pictures that needed to be taken for builders who'd just had their mortgages recorded (to show the bank that construction had not begun before the recording of the mortgage). So we did that on the way home. Of course, Bella was with us, so of COURSE the XM Radio (if you don't have this, just get it. Seriously.) was set to the "XM Kids" channel, which is SO superior to "Radio Disney" I can't even describe it. Anyway, we take lots of lot pictures (har, har), and at some point, Hampton the Hamster singing the extended version of "The Hamster Dance" (If you don't know the Hamster Dance, you haven't been on the internet long enough, and you don't know that they misspell the word as "hampster", to drive me nuts), comes on, which really gets Bella's groove on. So it was cranked up. We pulled up to the last building site to take a picture, and there were several of our most active builder clients and contractors congregated there. Alex rolls the window down, clicks his Polaroid, and then starts writing the lot info on the pictures. Still with the window down.

Me: "You know, all those manly builders are hearing you rocking out to "The Hamster Dance" right now, and they can't see Bella in the backseat."

Alex: "Hey, I'm off the clock, I can listen to whatever music I want." (Pauses to perform intentionally [I hope] bad "Cabbage Patch" maneuver from 20 year ago, tongue sticking out and making the official White Guy Dancing Face.) At this point, I collapse into pure hysterics. Mom (our boss) will probably be receiving some concerned calls from some builder clients in the next few days.

NEXT: It's much later, and time to get Bella to sleep. We're encouraging her to sleep in her own bed in her room all the time now, instead of just sporadically, and to have a consistent bedtime. It's a challenge. So the routine is this: We turn off all the lights, and all lie down in our bed. Bella nestles into my arm, and I hum her to sleep (Bella does not want to be SUNG to sleep with words--don't even try it. She wants to be HUMMED to sleep). I do most of this, at least in the early stages, because Alex is incapable of humming quietly--just like his speaking voice, the volume only goes down so far. I start off with lullabies, then move on to other nursery tunes, then when I run out of those, I usually go to the show tunes, starting with "Porgy and Bess" and moving on to "West Side Story"...if I get desperate, and she's still nodding, I've been known to resort to ABBA hits.

So anyway, it was taking longer than usual for Bella to go ALL THE WAY to sleep. Oh, she was snoozing, but the slightest disruption, and she'd have been UP again.

Me: "Alex? Help me out here, I'm getting tired. Hum her something."

Alex: "Like what?"

Me: "Doesn't matter, as long as it's soothing and soft."

Alex begins humming. It's about 1.5 seconds until I realize that he is actually humming the opening strains of "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" by Iron Butterfly. It's a surprising choice, to say the least. I manage to hold it together until he attempts to hum the ORGAN SOLO. Then I lose it, and make him stop. Because you can't hum the organ solo from "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida". Go ahead. Give it a shot. See? Consequent numbers from him include "Low Rider", "Radar Love" and some Pink Floyd. I had to put a stop to it. This launched a discussion of the Marshall Tucker Band, and it was ALL downhill from there.

NEXT: It's time to make "The Transfer". This is how we've decided to do it. Bella goes to sleep with me, as she is accustomed, then she is transported, in a drowsy state, to her own bed, and sat with until she is again fully asleep. As I am pinned in against the wall, and Alex is on the "open" side of the bed, we formulate a plan for The Transfer.

Me: "OK. I'm going to roll her onto my stomach, then you and I will roll toward each other, and I will pass her to you. Then you just gently roll out of bed and carry her to her room."

Alex: "All right. Let's do it. I feel like Sam Fisher." (I would call this a geeky "Splinter Cell" reference, except that I love "Splinter Cell", and Sam Fisher is HOT. If they really do make a "Splinter Cell" movie, PLEASE let Sam be played by George Clooney--Sam already LOOKS like George, see?)
I roll Bella onto my stomach. She's gently snoring, stirring slightly. I make the hand-off to Alex, at which point Bella suddenly becomes a wailing mass of way too many arms and legs, and gets unceremoniously tossed back to me, hot-potato style. I can easily say that Alex panicked under pressure. It was a decidedly un-Sam-Fisher-like moment. Alex said, "That was like something from a Chinese circus." I did get her back to sleep pretty quickly, and took her to her bed myself and laid her down semi-awake. It was, ultimately, at least, a successful transfer.

NEXT: With Bella asleep in her room, it's late, and we decide to watch "American Psycho" (HEY--another excuse to use THIS picture:), since we'd just seen "The Machinist" and had been discussing the movie as one "To Which Rapt Attention Must Be Paid". (If you have not participated in this discussion, PLEASE click the link and do so--some of us might be missing out on something great and not even know about it!) In the opening scene, the lead character is at a fancy restaurant, listening to a description of the specials. One of the specials is "free-range rabbit..." I didn't catch the rest of the description of the dish, because my brain went on a side trip at that point.

Me: "Free-range rabbit? That seems so mean! They're out there, frolicking, gamboling, hopping with abandon, then they get snatched up and eaten?" (This is very much a hypocritical attitude with me, because I will most certainly, eat a free-range chicken or cow, who very well may have been previously frolicking and/or gamboling...the chicken might have been hopping; the cow...I'm thinking not so much.)

Alex: "What? You'd prefer they were kept in lock-boxes?" (Pretending to order) "Uh, yes, I'll have the straightjacketed rabbit. Yes, the one who was kept in tiny handcuffs in a small metal box, only having been shown sunshine througha small pinhole every other day or so. Yes, in Clockwork Orange sauce. Thank you."

Number of times today I have uttered the phrase, "Honey, this completes the extent of the discussion I will participate in about football until the tonight's travesty.": At least 7.

If you happen to see the USC/Arkansas game at all tonight (9:30 CST), please observe a moment of sadness for my husband, who will most likely by that time be in sackcloth and ashes and rending his garments. Unless he's wearing his officially licensed NCAA Razorback gear, in which case you're not allowed to BREATHE on the garments, much less rend them.

*Belinda's brain update: We're doubling (!) the Zoloft again, and cutting back on the Klonopin. Still with the Lunesta, which BTW for those who ask, is working well IF YOU TAKE IT LIKE YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO, which I haven't been. Tried it the first time last night "as instructed", and slept like a rock.


  1. Well judging from your entry, I think your medicine is helping - you seem perkier!

    That poor horse tonight though :(

  2. I'm glad to know Alex is teaching Bella the classics. However, I would not exactly classify Iron Butterfly as soothing or soft.

  3. Leslie, yes, thanks, I think I am. My mom had to go to Wal-Mart for me today...still not up to that! I have a ton of email to catch up on. He didn't quite have the idea. And Bella will grow up hearing the eternal Led Zeppelin/The Who debate, but I will let her know that The Who is so far superior to LZ that it's not even a contest.

  4. I vote for neither. :-)

    and you are both nuts, but i have to thank you for giving me so many late night laughs these last couple weeks. the moebius thing, the freakin' poodles, the princess diapers. i love you guys.

  5. We luvs you, too. You are the only person I IM with that Alex HAS to come look and say, "What are you two talking about?" (He is snoopy about what Sue and I talk about too, but he usually just waits until we're done talking then reads the whole conversation.) And if I object, he says, "She's MY sister, anyway."

    But you cannot NOT have an opinion in the great Zeppelin/Who debate. My position is that the band responsible for "Squeeze My Lemon, Baby" in NO way compares to the band responsible for "Won't Get Fooled Again." That is all.

    And Mark totally rocks for making you a mobius strip. I'm still giggling.

  6. What is the way you're supposed to take Lunesta?

    I have a good thing for you to tell Alex. USC hires ringers for their marching band. My brother was a ringer for them when we were in high school. He got paid to pretend to blow a sousaphone and he even marched with them in the Rose Bowl parade.

    I've seen the horse run around the field. It is quite stirring, but I'm a UCLA fan (my dad's place of business) from way back and I don't even like USC. Plus those uniforms are a bit creepy, aren't they?

  7. I'm so very sorry, but I was too excited by our fast-paced touchdown filled game even from many many many rows up that I couldn't feel any pity. Sorry husband. =) And many other fans commented that poor traveler was going to be dead tired. And that was only in the second quarter. =)

  8. Can't blame you at all for your escitement. And it *was* Alex's prediction that Traveler would be all in by the end of the first half. I'm sure your Trojans will roll on to #1.
    (building year, building year, building year...)

  9. Margalit, you take the Lunesta (or Ambien, or whatever), turn out all the lights, and close your eyes. Seems obvious, no? Well, we were taking it and then watching TV, reading, whatever, and waiting for the pill to knock us unconscious. This method is WRONG. ;-)

  10. Man, that sucks. No way can I just take a pill and lay down and sleep. Even with Ambien, I have to read for at least 45 minutes till I conk out. Isn't insomnia fun?

  11. Don't it, though? I've been reading myself to sleep since I was 5, so it's a hard thing not to do. And it's hard for Alex (and now me, too) not to have that TV on at bedtime. We're trying hard, though. Getting everyone's sleep cycle stabilized is really important, for all our health.

  12. Where are you getting your meds filled now? Did they not tell you how to take it? I don't remember y'all being on Lunesta when I was at The Med Shoppe.

  13. Well, we didn't ask, but of COURSE our doc had told us. We just DIDN'T LISTEN. Are you surprised? It really does work, if you take it and go the heck to sleep. Gee...follow instructions, who knew?

  14. My name is Julia Bean and i would like to show you my personal experience with Klonopin.

    I am 36 years old. Have been on Effexor for at least 5 months now. My dr put me on 5 to 10mg per night right from the start, I was on it for approximately 4 to 5 months before a friend showed up at my drs appt to tell him what was happening to me. I was sure I was losing my mind and afraid to tell them what was happening. They discontinued my klonopin on the spot and eventually all those symptoms went away it took months!! I don't recall having any withdrawl symptoms but I may have as I had never been on many meds before!

    I have experienced some of these side effects-
    Periodic Amnesia that increased as time went on, confusion, blurred vision, Muscle Pain, Left Sided numbness and weakness, pneumonia... plus plus plus

    I hope this information will be useful to others,
    Julia Bean