I Need To Know
How the F you find a pediatrician? Our OB has twice now given us a list of people to choose from (guess we have to have one picked out before we hit the hospital for our triumphant 4 hour hypnobirth and subequent bidet usage) but in the end, they're all just names on paper.

I guess the next thing to do is take those names, see if our insurance covers those names, then make some phone calls. The most important thing on my mind is is the real-life doctor gonna decide that having a patient with two mommies is something she (I'm assuming we'll go with a woman for this one) can't handle. I'm sure there's other shit I should find out, or care deeply about, but in the end, when we're there with our wee one, and she's sick or just not feeling well, it's not fair to any of us if the doctor gets the willies about the family before her.

You may well be thinking 'but you live in the Bay Area, home of ridiculous diversity, where the White Man is the minority, could that really happen?'

Short answer: yes. Let me tell you about the Very Painful Pap Smear I had a few years back with the backup doctor at my GP's office. After asking me like 8000 times if there was any chance I could be pregnant (sperm-free life = virtually no chance of unplanned pregnancy), I finally said, no, sister, I'm a lesbian. Which set her head a-spinning and caused whatever concentration she had about my nether regions to be gone. Pain ensued and yes, I should have gotten my half-dressed ass outta there pronto but of course, I didn't. Not that day.

That doctor left the practice and my regular GP has been fantastico ever since. I told her about the Painful Pap and she apologized profusely.

On a much later day involving a different doctor deciding to freak out about a similar issue, I very much held my own, got off of the table, withstood what could have been great humiliation and left, never to return to that doctor.

So yeah, it happens. Though I'd love everyone in the world to be gay-friendly, I get it. Not everyone is. And even those who aren't are lovers of us gays are allowed to that opinion.

But they're not allowed to put their hands on me or on my kid.

Blast From The Past
Finding this excellent picture of a gerbil reminded me of the good times we had in the early days of the internet, including one of my personal favorites: The Hamster Dance.

1998, I salute you.

Banner Night For Babies
I'll own up to this: first and foremost, I am always, at all times (yes, even when they're fussy) enchanted by Sam and Riley. If you knew them, you'd feel this way too. We celebrate any and all milestones more than we've ever celebrated anything. God, the day both girls peed in the potty, you'd have thought Andreatan and Susan just won a gold medal. And in a way, they did.

But I've had a couple of side projects. 1. getting them to say 'groovy.' Because few things in life are funnier than a 2 year old speaking jive. And 2. getting them to raise the roof. I'm patient. I did what I could, said groovy a lot, raised the roof a lot, and waited.

Until last night when first, Riley busted out with groovy (grooey), not just once but enough times to make me burst with pride. And then, later, after a bathtime filled with many groovy's, Sam raised the roof.

We went home happy. Until I discoverd that my cheapass laptop had konked out. We were able to resurrect it but not without much consternation and cursing.


The Assvice Posse Strikes Again
I did make it to band last night, even though I'd gone home early from work thanks to feeling like utter crapola. A nap and some sheer determination got me there, and boy am I glad I made it.

Not just because I needed the practice, but because the assvice posse had a chance to impart more wisdom and ask more inappropriate questions. Had I not gone I would not have had this to share with you:

- Mrs. 'How can you talk to the baby if she doens't have a name' asking me for the 4th time what the baby's name is. And me, politely but firmly saying 'we're still not telling' and her utter perpexledness at this.

Folks, I really don't get the perplexedness. Is it really so bad to not share our selection at this point? We've already shared her gender, isn't that enough to feed the curious minds of the general public, especially the parts of that public that we really don't know well?

But Mrs. 'how can you talk to her if she doesn't have a name' doesn't agree. She stood near me, muttering comments about why wouldn't I share the name until I tried SO HARD to deflect, saying that so many nice names are really popular, that that makes it hard to choose. She kept going so finally, I said, well, we have a backup. That backup is Hortense.

This sent her into a tizzy, she started sputtering and making name suggestions, like we could use Elizabeth as a middle name, then call her that. And it's the reason we're not telling. Because the sputtering, commenting and suggestions are not something we want to hear. It was hard enough doing all of that on our own to get to this point.

The funny part? No matter what this kid's name is, it won't be the falling-from-the-sky coolest name ever that all the perpelexed inquirers seem to expect.

It's just a regular name that we think works for our kid.

Last night's other gems included another lady telling me I should bring the baby to our concert because she'd know the music since she's been with me to all these rehearsals. The concert in question is next week. You do the math.

And that, folks, was another spectacular night in band.


Master Of Breathing
Apparently this kid of ours is bound and determined to be the World's Best Breather because now she is practicing breathing ALL THE TIME by drinking amniotic fluid (I know, yum) then getting the hiccups all day long.

She's currently on her 2nd bout of the day. I'd like to point out that it's 10:22 a.m. Go, kid, go.

Last Night
I dreamt that I was playing hockey. It was a practice, not a game, but I was out there on the ice, wearing my beloved red pants.

I woke up SOOOO happy.


Everyon Needs One Of These
Limbs & Things - Rectal Examination Trainer.

I might just be making that face for the rest of the day. Thanks, Andreatandreaa.

Let Me Tell You About The First Time I Played Hockey
Not just because I miss it like crazy, no, but because it says more about who I am than just about anything. So here goes: for many, many years, doing new things, especially physical things, scared me. I sat at my desk during the day and on my couch at night, enjoying many a tasty meal that added up to more weight and more importantly, a whole lotta lethargy. Why leave the house when you can play video games, right?

So I didn't. I sat on my ass and watched TV, wondering if maybe I should be doing something else, something that happened, you know, outside of my house. I wish I could say that there was a single event, a single inspiration that made something change in me, but it was just more this weird realization.

I could try new things. And if I didn't like them, that was okay, but I could try. I would take a deep breath and do whatever was asked of me, no matter how much it scared me or seemed foreign. Somehow, that new thing ended up being hockey.

So I signed up for a class, at 8 freaking 15 am on Saturdays. I went to steal-and-resell it again sports, picked up a seriously cheap and shitty set of gear for like $200 and went to my first class. I had no real idea how to get dressed, even, but some nice woman explained it and I managed to get it all on. I stepped onto the ice, remembering the few times I'd ice skated as a kid, remembering all the times I'd roller skated as that same kid, how I'd managed a crossover on my TOTALLY HAWT blue quad skates, but all of that seemed very far ago as I stood there, sweating and wondering what the fuck I thought I was doing, at age 27 and overweight, standing there as people whizzed by me.

But I remembered what I'd told myself. Just take a deep breath and do what the instructors ask you to. Or at least try.

So I tried. And failed in oh so many spectacular ways, like standing there, pointing backwards and trying to move backwards, even a little. Didn't happen and OMG did my calves burn. My head hurt from being pinched in a cheapass too-small helmet and I really didn't have any fun that day.

But I'd told myself I'd at least take the 12 weeks of the class and that was what I'm going to do, damn it. Because I'm cheap, I'd paid for it and once I've done that I'm gonna use it and because I'm stubborn.

So I went back (after discovering that getting my skates sharpened helped a bit, even if it also scared the crap out of me) and after 8 weeks of not really being fun AT ALL, it got fun.

You know the rest, eventually I was bitten by the hockey crack and played a million times a week. I even got sort of good at it and now I tell nice ladies who are just starting out the story of that awful first day, of how hard it was and how much I've grown since and because of taking that first day on the ice. I don't think I tell those nice ladies often enough how impressed I am by their own ability to take that first step onto the ice and how much I respect them for taking it.

I tell you this now because I learned something really important that day, and all the days that followed: that I can do whatever I set out to. In a very tangible way, I took on something completely foreign to my experience and ran with it. That first step changed my life, changed Andrea's, too and I'll always be grateful for the dramatic turn my life took once I became part of the hockey community.

Using that strength and faith in myself, we made a decision a few weeks ago about how we're going to approach the upcoming arrival of our beloved bowling ball.

We're going to attempt to welcome her into the world without drugs, using HypnoBirthing. Yes, we're still going to deliver at the hospital, there is NO way I could be comfortable even attempting this at home. I had seen the technique used on one of my "homework shows" where women give birth and it seemed like a really calm way to go about this.

There's no shouting, nobody telling me when to push (seriously, why does 10cm dialated automatically mean the baby's ready to come down? She might be ready a couple of minutes later), nobody forcing me to deliver on my back (which actually can make things harder), and in the end, when things happen are all up to the mother. You know, me. The one who's feeling all these things.

For as long as it takes, I plan to recall the strength it took to change my life that day I first played hockey and to pass that strength onto our daughter in this way.

We've told very few people because I'm SO not interested in hearing anyone mock this. I understand that it's not for everyone, but that doesn't give anyone the right to laugh (yes, it's happened already) at the absurd notion of being drug-free. So if you've got mocking comments, just share those somewhere else, I won't publish them here.

We took a class a few weeks ago, we practiced a 'mock birth' where we had to use the variety of relaxation techniques in sequence as if we were doing the Real Thing. For the last part of it, I did the Special Breath and don't you know, the kid went crazy. Cra-zee. Like she was pushing against leaving with all of her might. I made Andrea stop her part of the excersize and feel how hard our wee one was resisting leaving her wooshy world.

That's when I knew we could do this.

And if we don't, we don't. We'll use the techniques for as far as they'll take us. I refuse to let it eat at me for years after, to ask myself what I could have done differently to prevent x from happening. I'll do my best to remember that the end goal is for us to meet our daughter.

But I won't give up the goal of doing it drug-free without a fight. Or at least a lot of deep breaths and visualization.

One Thing Leads To Another
So, I decided I'd had enough, it was time to change the sheets. Seriously, this is harder than it sounds when leaning over has become a major challenge. But we did it. And while the mattres(s) was laid bare, I was inspired by Jennie, who had flipped her mattress, and suggested to Andrea that we get our flip on.

We lifted the mattres(s) and underneath our humble bed was a ton of crap. And dust. And books. And shoes. So Andrea schlepped out the vaccuum and oh did we get our suck on. Unearthed long-lost shoes (wow! we have 2 of these now!), lots of porn and more socks than seemed quite right, given that the laundry basket is on the other side of the room.

It took a while and mucho sneezing ensued but in the end, our room is much cleaner, our mattres(s) is a little harder and we have a full suite of clean sheets. Ahhh. It was a really productive night, even if a stray sock did get stuck in the vaccuum and make it start smoking for a while.


One Advantage
Of having so many people at my shower and thus making Susan's living room an SRO was that just about every time someone walked by me, I poked them in the ass.

I know you love me.

Only In Silicon Valley
Wen had a local restaurant reserve a table for a bunch of us a few weeks ago. She gave her name, which is Wen. We arrived to see the reserved sign on the table -- one side said 'Gwen' and the other? 'Nguyen'

So from this point forward, I have renamed Wen to Wen Gwen Nguyen.

Saturday was The Big Day, our baby shower. Now, we've never had any kind of a shower, since those nice people who make laws don't think we deserve to get married, so this was all new for us. And very exciting!

I'm told that usually if you invite a group of people to an Event (x) then roughly half (x/2) will be able to attend. Apparently there's a Hockey Corrolary to that, stating that if you have the Event on a Saturday afternoon, when none of the leagues you're part of are playing, that all but about 4 of the invitees will attend.

Which makes for a very crowded room. And a lot of gift-opening and a lot of Samanthas. We got just about everything we needed for our little bowling ball and even better, it was an amazing outpouring of love from y'all.

The flow of presents to open was amazing. Just amazing. From the extremely practical to the holy-crap-this-stuff-is-soooo-nice, to the this is soo funny, it was all represented. At the very end, I opened the package from my mom, which had some really nice outfits in it. It also had the teeny sweaters my Grandma had knitted for me when I was a baby, complete with the 'Made especially for you by Grandma' tags she'd sewn in for me. We also got a blanket she'd knitted. I knew it was coming, I knew the card said 'For Elizabeth, (let's not discuss how I've gone by Liz for over 20 years and my mom still prefers that other, longer name) from her Grandma,' but still, when I saw that card, and those items I lost it.

At the end of the day, Susan flew into high gear, packing Andrea's car to the gills with our new treasure. We must have looked like The Joads, schlepping enough gear to completel outfit a wee person back home. I was spurred on by a rare late-night (9 pm) burst of energy and sorted through everything, making a small dent toward finding a place for it all in the wee one's room, which now seems a lot smaller and more full, more ready for her arrival than it did on Saturday morning.

To everyone who came, to everyone who couldn't come but thought of us on Saturday, to Susan who stayed up all night getting ready for this, we cannot thank you enough for your generosity. When our daughter asks, we can show her the pictures from that day and tell her that she was so very loved from the moment we thought of bringing her into the world.

And that, my friends, is the best gift of all.


Thanks Carol
Yes, Carol is gone from my workplace and yes, that still sucks. But she did send the most excellent video -- LAZY MUNCIE, which in many ways is the story of my youth. It's so worth the wait, especially when they meet Jim Davis, creator of Garfield.

Do You Hear Them?
Andrea and I were practicing visualizations and breathing this morning. Yes I said that. No, you can't make fun of it.

Anyway, she was doing a very nice job of getting me away from it all, describing being on the beach and all that, when Zeus decided to bark his seal bark.

Andrea did not miss a beat -- she said 'and then the seals are barking in the distance' and went back to what she was doing. Nice work, honey.

Out Of The Blue
Last night we enjoyed a super tasty dinner at the newly-reopened Kingswood (now Royal) steak house, aka God's Gift To Shabu Shabu. Buoyed by the energy of a tasty meal, we took the dogs for a walk and finally, after we returned home from said walk, I checked the mail.

Which contained a letter addressed to me with no return address. A letter? Haven't had one of those in quite some time. I open it and out falls a carefully-clipped ad for the scholarship that's been set up in my Grandma's name. It had a really old picture of her, and a blurb about how fantastic she was (all true, I can and will always assure you), how her long life was filled with love. And then a plug for starting your own scholarship foundation.

Who was it from? Well, it was from my birth grandmother, my birthmom's mom. She'd seen it in the paper and was pretty sure it was Grandma. I was and am so touched by the idea of her seeing it, recognizing who it was and sending it to me, along with a very nice letter.

Next, I did what anyone would do -- put the ad up on the fridge, clipped on top of a note Grandma had written me when we first moved into our house. That note instructed me to not worry about the unpacked boxes, that one day we'd get to it. That it was better to just enjoy life than worry about stuff like that. And that yes, she loved me always.

So I hung the ad there and for the first time since she died, really cried.


Hi. We're Not Lifeguards
Since I moved into this new-to-me building on the other side of our campus at work, I've been witness to far too many people spinning their badges as if they're whistles. This causes me to pause, wait till the spinning has stopped, then walk carefully between them.

Why? Why is it necessary to spin our badges? We're not teenagers working at a pool, we're adults working at a Real Job in a building with narrow hallways. Please, co-workers with a nervous habit, at the very least be aware of how much space your badge-spinning requires and retract accordingly when the Very Pregnant tread past you.

Because you are not this guy:

Never Stops Being Funny
And no, I'm not talking about the 'see you tomorrow, corn!' joke or how a funnel cake is made, but about the Chuckles Bites the Dust episode of Mary Tyler Moore that Bubbles scored for me at wen's yard sale. I loaded that shit up and man, it's still so excellent, even 21 years after the original airing, even though I've seen it about a zillion times.

It's that good. So good that just mentioning it to my mom will get her going. So good that I chuckled to myself through the whole thing.

Thanks for the chuckles, Bubbles and wen.

Another Non-Event
At this point, OB visits are pretty boring. Oh wait, aside from the very early visits where we got to see a wee blob with a heartbeat, then a slightly bigger wee blob, then something that looked a crapload more like a baby, albeit one with a big schnoz, to our most recent viewing, at Christmas, where she not only looked like a very small person but she revealed her gender.

Visits since then are a LOT less exciting. Pee in a cup, get weighed (ugh), have my blood pressure taken, go into the exam room, wait, wait some more, continue waiting and eventually spend 5 minuets with the doc listening to the kid's heartbeat, if she stays still long enough to provide one.

That's it. Maybe some palpatations to determine the bowling ball's position and you're on your way, back for a repeat of the same in 2 weeks. Seriously, at this point, it's all holding pattern. The bowling ball is just putting on weight, she's not likely getting much longer, just fatter. Seems surreal that a year ago we were charting every goddamn fertility symbol, buying sperm, planning to take every last trip or do every last thing that cannot be done while pregnant and now we're just hunkered down. Waiting to welcome our daughter, who at this moment is hiccuping inside of me.


I Beg You
All my well-meaning co-workers and friends: if you see a very pregnant woman (me) heading at a decent (for a very pregnant woman) speed toward the bathroom, please please please DO NOT stop her, even if you're about to say the building's on fire.

My Day In Jokes
The day started off strong with a Sanford and Son reference, then moved on to inventing a new kind of product -- a Poise Thong, then seems to be closing with a speedo-wearing man wandering the desert in search of a birthing tub.

I'm pretty sure that if I explained where all of this came from, it wouldn't be all that funny to you. But me? I'm laughing almost enough to need that Poise Thong.

Not Much To Say
When I said the whole pregnancy thing is about waiting, I really wasn't kidding. Each day I wait until it's time to go home from work, where after a dinner that I still struggle to eat, I go straight to bed, where I struggle to get comfy. That is also the time of day where the baby gets her groove on and more often than not, we watch my belly instead of the TV. Which reminds me of the first summer Sam and Riley were here, we'd go over to Bill and Susan's, hold a baby and pretend to watch TV when really, we were watching the girls. Their TiVo sat on pause for what seemed like the entire summer, waiting for us to lose interest in the Baby Show. 2 years later, we're still watching.

I trust that this summer, the same ancient TV that's gotten me through this long winter of pregnancy will sit on pause while we watch our daughter's Baby Show.

Until then, I'm just tired and new things hurt every day. That's really all the news from here.

Has It Really Come To This?
At lunch today, I scored a much-coveted booth at a tasty burger joint. Only to discover that I didn't actually fit in it.


I Don't Get It
That Fred Phelps is indeed a special guy. He hates, hates, hates us gays and goes to a really ridiculous length to show it. His 'church' used to picket funerals of AIDS victims (because, hi, of course everyone afflicted by AIDS is gay) but now they've moved on to something I just don't get: funerals of servicemen and women killed in Iraq.

I think his reasoning is that those soldiers are being killed by IEDs via a direct order from God, who of course hates all gays. He's not saying that the soldiers are gay, no, he's saying that our nation is being punished for being so damn friendly to the queers (just a note for your scorecards: we're still not allowed to marry, nice gay people are beaten/harrassed/killed every day and often, local law enforcement does nothing about it, there are still far too many special interest groups working with state legislatures to try and outlaw many of the few rights we do have, none of which are 'special' rights).

At least some really excellent people are doing their best to combat this: Bikers roll to military funerals to oppose anti-gay protests and for that, good bikers, I thank thee kindly.

But the weirdass logic that gets the 'church' out there to protest sill eludes me and always will.

Just Add Water?
Fueled by an excellent Tofu House dinner, I had a great flurry of energy last night. This included sitting in the living room for the 4th time since November, rocking in our oh so excellent rocker while the dogs gathered 'round like a Norman Rockwell picture.

I was just waiting until I digested a bit so if I needed to bend over it wouldn't be a huge issue. Finally, I headed into the baby's room to Do Some Work. We'd piled a bunch of stuff in the crib (extra clothes from Susan, the maternity clothes I never wore, random other crapola) so I set about unpiling.

And then. I took the plastic wrapping off the mattress that Andrea had expertly tested in the store a while back. Then I put on the mattress pad and sheet we'd had washed, waiting. For what, I'm not sure, I think waiting for an appropriate time that wouldn't be too early.

After that I packed my birthing slippers and other supplies into a bag for me to take to el hospital, then packed the two outfits we have to choose from to bring Murrita home in into her diaper bag.

Woah. Just woah. Soon, she'll be here, wearing those cute outfits and sleeping in that crib.


How Did This Happen?
I'd noticed this, sort of, just a little bit, for a while. That sinks, all kinds of sinks, are getting harder and harder to reach. It now requires me holding in my breath, (which does little but makes me feel like I'm doing something proactive) leaning as far as I can, then getting completely out of breath from the gargantuan effort of reaching the faucet.

Yes, you can deduce that this means that other things of all varieties are also growing more difficult to reach as the beloved bowling ball inside my belly swells to over the weight of 16 quarter pounders (pre-cooked).

Though we still have a few weeks to go before Murray's arrival would be met without great fraught, I'm already starting to think of the things I can't wait to do again. Like wear pants with a zipper. Like tuck my shirt in. Like eat until I'm full at a pace that doesn't bore my mealmates to tears. Like drink a beer. Like walk without random back, leg or crotch pain.

Because, seriously, I think it's going to be a crapload more fun to be Murray's mom, to show her off to everyone who asks than it is to be that lady who is pretty sick of being pregnant.

What A Weekend
Usually Andrea is the Master of Weekend Updates and I just write about whatever crosses my mind but this weekend was action-packed so here goes.

Friday night we had a very mellow birthday dinner for moi with Susan, Bill and the girls. Yes, we could have done something fancier or bigger but you know, by the time Friday nights roll around, my ass is tired. So it was perfect, even if once again I didn't eat as much as I should have.

We did have a very tasty, very phallic dessert:

Afterwards, we hung out at Susan's house while the girls burned off their last burst of energy before bed. Riley kissed my belly for the first time (the baby does regularly receive much admiration from the girls) which was perhaps the cutest thing ever. Until Sam did the same thing a few minuets later.

Saturday we headed up to SF at the ass crack of dawn for childbirthing class. We learned quite a bit, and did our best not to laugh when someone asked how a particular exercise related to belly dancing. I also discovered that for the first time in my life, I was not the person who fidgeted the most, no, Mrs. Belly Dancer won that award both days! Go you!

We also enjoyed speculating which couples would be most likely to buy a bugaboo stroller, which at $750 is a wee bit out of our comfort zone.

After the class, we headed over to Amy's house for some tasty lunch in her hippest of all neighborhoods. Imagine my great surprise and joy, oh the joy, when she came out sporting this:


I laughed so hard and took great delight in Amy's continuation of my birthday theme, which ended up being headscarves. And Rhoda.

We ate lunch at this fabulously fun place: Our Court which served tasty dim sum. And spaghetti. Of course. We walked around the hood, enjoying Amy's fine neighbors and some tasty boba. We stopped at Amy's pad so I could pee and show off the oh so fasinating position my baby is in -- when I lean forward it looks like a giant wedge of cheese has lodged itself in the middle of my belly.

Rushed home, stopping to eat on the way, then I got ready for my concert. It was the small ensemble one, which in the past has bordered on a wee bit lame. But this time, we had not that many groups, so it didn't drag on forever. My quintet played a totally sweet piece called skokiaan which featured yours truly. And if I do say so myself, I've still got it. I rocked the piece and had a blast playing.

I do have to make a confession: Mormons kinda freak me out. I say this because we had the concert in a very nice Mormon church, surrounded by pictures of religious icons I recognized but who weren't part of my lexicon. More importantly, I knew that the church is less than fond of gays, and I couldn't help but feel uncomfy knowing that. The church members who were there the day we rehearsed did greet me and my round, baby-filled belly with an enthusiasm that kinda creeped me out.

All that activity and religious exposure left me quite weary, so we headed home and I promptly passed out. Sunday, we had part 2 of the childbirth class, so we headed back to SF for more belly dancing and fidgeting excitement. Again, we learned lots and I feel more prepared than ever to pass our beloved bowling ball between my legs.

This time, we headed home so my tired ass could nap. And what a nap it was. I heart naps.

We headed up to Belmont so Andrea could freaking finally try out for Red. She did great and I was insanely proud. She has one more tryout to attend next week, I'll be there to watch her do her thang then, too.

Later that night, we watched the L Word, which featured a funeral and impromptu memorial for one of the main core of characters. Were the show written better, I probably would have gotten all emotional, thinking about the (far too many) funerals I'd attended, how people's families often don't see them for who they really are, how there's that moment of great limbo the afternoon after a funeral where you're just trying to figure out you'll refactor your life to no longer include the person you just buried.

But for better or worse, it's just not written that well anymore so even though I had fleeting moments of those memories, I didn't stay in them the way I would have for a better-written show (like, say, my beloved Six Feet Under, which more than a zillion times had me weeping). Maybe it's better, I'm emotional enough these days.

I think that's it. Sounds like it ought to be enough for one weekend, don't you?


Today is Very Special Headscarf day because one has been spotted here as well. Thanks for getting the memo, you excellent wearers of headscarves!

Already, She Rules My World
So today is my birthday. Right, we all know this now. 33, year of No Special Emphasis. But still, I'd like to have a nice day and make some good memories. But I worry that I blew my wad of goodness on Susan's birthday because today started with something Really Special.

Waking up due to a horrific leg cramp, the likes of which I have never had. I sat up in bed, then tried to do a bunch of visualization, imagining that the fucking thing was going away. That totally worked.

For like 2 seconds until it came roaring back in a totally different way, like a taser pulsing a crazy pulse of pain. Ahh yes that's much better. Score none for visualization and one more for the joys of pregnancy.

4 hours later, I still feel it and walk with a pretty sweet-ass limp. Happy birthday indeed!

It's not all bad, I got my usual joint call from my parents, which included singing and the story of the day I was born. That story of course includes corned beef and cabbage. My mom also offered me a guaranteed way to get rid of future leg cramps -- leap out of bed and take a few steps. Leaping is something I only remember fondly but I'll try getting up should I ever be afflicted with this particular malady again.

Also, Amy reports seeing a woman seeing a headscarf that's just like the kind Rhoda would have worn, probably similar to this:

And, so far, the best thing I've seen today has been Bubbles' gift to me: a very special web page featuring a guy I saw on the ebay yesterday. I can't stop looking at him and laughing, which hurts because Murray has shifted to a spot where I feel some random part of her press into me every time I laugh.

But of course I can't stop laughing. Happy birthday to me, indeed, and thanks to everyone who's contributing to making it a good one.


Most of the three of you already know that tomorrow is not only St. Patrick's day, it's my birthday. 33. What the hell does 33 get for you that 32 didn't? Other than being 1 year closer to 401k withdrawl, that's it.

When I was a kid, the week of my birthday was SUCH a big deal. I'd wake up every morning knowing that I had one fewer day to wait until my day came. Then there would be parties and cupcakes and gifts and the wearing of much green. But as I got older, I became more conscious of the fact that though my birthday was a big deal day for my family, somewhere out there in the ether was my birthmom and it was likely that for her, my birthday wasn't that day of great joy.

Being a good Catholic, I started to feel guilty on my birthday, started to long for this mystery woman who shared this date with me. So I started to care less and less about making a big hoo-hah about the day.

Fast-forward a number of years, to the time when I found my birthmother, confirmed that yes, she did think of me on this day every year and learned that the penchant for being overly maudlin was pretty much mine alone. She got it, that I was okay, had the kind of wonderful life she'd trusted that the social workers had assured her I would have. In the meantime, she'd built herself a wonderful life, too.

And even though all those questions are answered about how I came to be, I still just don't get very excited about my own birthday anymore. Part of it is just the marking of the passage of years (though every other year in the last decade was marked with a silent 'another year that I don't have a kid yet, will I ever?') and part of it is something I can't quite put my finger on.

But at any rate, this year, we're having a very mellow day and are more focused on the little girl growing very rapidly in my belly than on me. If it stays that way forever, that anything the kid does trumps me, that's A-OK. I'm the mom now, time to give up center stage for her.

Because I can tell you right now, this kid already has the world (and her moms) wrapped around her little finger.

Apparently the Murrita did not enjoy her new take-up-as-much-room-as-possible position either, so she moved just enough to make me breathe a bit easier and pee a bit less. Thank you, dear child of mine, for this renewed freedom.

She's still in a spot where the baby show gets better and better to watch. We must have had the TV on pause forever last night, watching her do back flips in there. I woke up at 5 again and so did the kid, but I was able to go back to sleep, leaving Murrita and Andrea to amuse each other while I slept. Just as Andrea would drift off, the wee one would kick again, waking Andrea back up with a smile.

These, I tell you, are the moments that (sort of) make all the shit we've gone through during this pregnancy worth it. Or at least they remind me that in the end, it really is magic.


Murray's new position means that she's having the hiccups ON MY BLADDER right now. Awesome.

What Is That?
Andrea was reading the updates from the pregnancy journal that has day-to-day growth information about what Murrita is doing last night. At some point around now, there's some PUPILLARY action going on with the baby, to which I harkened back to the scene from Silence of the Lambs where the mortician digs 'some sort of chrysalis or pupa' out of the back of a victim's throat.

So I asked, wait, do you mean PUPA?
Andrea: no, it's PUPUllairy
Me: Are you SURE it's not a Pupa?
Andrea: NO! It's PUPUllairy.

And on and on, we PUPAed and we laughed while the baby did her amazing technocolor hustle for us. They (whoever they are) say that stuff the baby hears now, she can remember so I hope with every ounce of hope I can muster that our kid remembers mostly that her parents laughed together every night.

And of course, that they love her very much and are already enthralled by her bad self.

When I'm so in the mood for (not quite 'craving' I don't think) a hot fudge sundae (with NUTS) at McDonald's, do they let me drive through, place my order, fish out my money, get to the window and ONLY THEN tell me that their ice cream is completely out.


Happy Susan's Birthday To Me!
Yesterday started out kinda crummy, cold, I was grumpy from yet another night of lameo sleep, from co-workers I didn't know giving me a hard time about stupid shit, it all added up to me being in a seriously pissy mood.

That all changed when I found out I was being taken off the Project From Hell(PFH) because my new boss had a chance to see how very not inline with my current skill set was and how freaking complicated it was. So now I'm on a project that I can totally do, and do well, minus the crazyass stress of the PFH. Phew, phew, phew twice. I so did not want to come into my new job and be the Team Dumbass.

Andrea and I had a nice sushi dinner (no, no fish for me, not even when I'm not Great With Child) then headed to Susan's to deliver her birthday cake and Yule Log. They weren't home yet but I was struck by the sudden and urgent urge to pee, so we broke in to take care of that. When they finally arrived home, we fully expected to see 2 very sleepy little girls, but no, there was no such thing! Riley grinned her huge grin at the sight of us, we helped them get into their pj's and once again expected them to go right to bed.

But they totally had other ideas, giving us an excellent show of running laps, laughing, pushing milk around in their giant tonka trucks and getting auntie love.

When we got home and I parked my ass in bed, it was pretty clear why I'd needed to pee a lot more than usual and why I'd had such a newfound hard time breathing. Murrita has found herself a new position, straight up and down, pressing on both my bladder and squishing my lungs. The upside to this new location is that the baby show has become clearly visible from the outside. There is much enthusiastic undulating from inside my belly, it only intensifies when Andrea is talking.

I also discovered a really nice 'congrads' card from the last members of my extended family to not only know that I'm gay, but pregnant. It was a totally unexpected and really nice surprise.

Happy Susan's Birthday to everyone, even Susan!


Smarter Than I Think!
This year I signed up for an FSA account and picked some random, sort of high number o' dollars to put in it. Apparently they withdraw that shit pretty fast because I'm already only $75 from my annual cap, which means no more payroll deductions.

The better news is that I have enough in there RIGHT NOW to cover all of our out-of-pocket in-advance charges for giving birth (for the record, I still think they should pay me, because from what I understand, 1. having a kid will change my life and 2. hurts) without using actual money.

I rule! Steve Holt!

So I Bought This Book
Birthing from Within. Because I dunno, it seemed like a good idea at the time.

Had I been able to pick the thing up at the store and flip through it, I would have put that shit right back down and saved my $12. But no, I bought it on this here Internet and wow, was I annoyed when I opened it.

I'd seen it mentioned on many people's blogs as a great way to learn more about childbirth and fancy breathing and all that hoohah. If those people liked it, I should too, right?

Wrong-o. I skimmed the first half last night and couldn't find A SINGLE THING that was worth reading aloud to Andrea. Not a one. I did, however, find instructions for how to draw my own vision of Murrita's birth with crayons. People, I assure you, I did NOT need to spend $12 to learn how to do *that*. I really didn't.

The author did her thesis on the art created by pregnant women so the book is packed! Packed! with shitty drawings by these women. Lady, seriously, if I wanted to read your thesis, I would go read your thesis. I wanted to learn more fancy breathing and crap like that.

Granted, I'm only halfway through my now-irritated skimming of the thing and it's JUST NOW getting to actual childbirth techniques. But jesus christ, now there are a couple of hours of my life that I'll never get back because I was reading about how to draw with crayons. Thanks a lot.

Finally, Our Calling Has Been Found
This now makes twice that Bubbles and I have ended up sitting next to someone with a lot of personality who is named KC. Mind you, these are 2 different (i.e. not similar) KCs, so it got us to thinking, 'what's with us and these KCs?'

The truth just hit me: it's because we are the Sunshine Band! That's us, bringers of disco and light wherever we go! We are your boogie man, that's what I am!

2 months from today is my due date. Holy shit.

In less daunting news, today is Susan's birthday! Feel free to stop by her little place on ye ole' internet and say Happy Birthday!

Heather already did:


Who Needs It?
I've read that at this point, our baby's sleep/wake pattern is growing similar to what it will be after she's arrived in the world. So I've been paying attention, trying to figure out when we'll be the most likely to be awake in the middle of the night.

She's all about being up around 6 am for a couple of hours. The weird thing? For the last week or so, I've been all about getting up to pee at 5, then staying awake for NO GOOD REASON. Just as I start to drift back to sleep, the wee one wakes up and starts belly dancing.

Both of us seem to get back to sleep around 7 or 7:30 and then get some great sleep. Which would be excellent if I didn't have a pesky thing called 'work' to get to.

The End Of An Era
Yesterday, I was enjoying the shitty service at City Beach (why is it that EVERY TIME we go there, they're swamped and don't have time to do more than ignore us?) when my phone rang. It was my mom, who said 'we sold the house.'

It threw me for a second. What house? I know they're talking about moving, but I thought you had to actually decide to move before your house would be sold. Then it clicked.

Grandma's house. Oh.

It had been on the market since last summer and I guess they'd had to drop the price at least once but finally, a couple came along and just like that, it's not in our family anymore. Or it won't be after the end of next month.

The phone will finally be disconnected -- it was the first phone number I ever learned. Didn't need to know my own if I knew Grandma's. The house was close enough that I could ride my bike over there, giving me the access to her that made us so close. A hand of gin rummy or a night watching Benny Hill was never very far away.

But now, it's finally going to be over. All the furniture that served as a backdrop for my memories has been divided up and will be carted out, to be spread among all of our homes. I'm grateful that some of those things are headed my way, but of course, would rather have things be different, would rather be planning a way to bring my new daughter to meet her great-grandmother this summer.

Instead, I'll rely on the 32 years of memories with her that I was lucky enough to have, and sometime, later this year, take my daughter to Grandma's grave, where we will blow bubbles.

No Meat, Please
In preparation for this weekend's childbirth class, we got a flyer with all the details. It included directions, what to bring and a suggestion that we bring some snacks (as if there isn't always some sort of food in my purse these days), but "No meat, please."

We all know that it will take every ounce of my reserves to not strut in there brandishing a kielbasa.

When we were hanging out with Susan, Bill and the girls last night, I kept saying at random times "No meat, please," to which Sam would emphatically chime in "No meat!" and shake her head.


My fabulous new group at work is at a fabulous offsite today, heading up to Lake Tahoe. Were I less pregnant and more able to sleep comfortably anywhere but in my own bed, I'd be there with them. But when I found myself looking up 'Tahoe NICU' on el internet, I thought, don't be stupid. Stay the hell at home, near your hospitals (and bed) of choice.

I expected to go into work today but my new boss emphatically stated that I could have the day off. Who am I to argue with the boss? So I got to go to the Children's Disco-very Mvsevm with Sam and Riley and now that they're home napping, I'm here trying to file our freaking taxes.

TurboTax is proving to be ridiculously painful to use. File now? No! You have a math error on form 8068-B, please go fix it. Hi. I pay for the software so I am math-exempt. Because math is so my worst event in school. Fix error, file! No! You cannot file, you need to update the TortureTax software so you can deduct your filing fee from your refund. Update software. Update crashes. Restart process. Re-open TortureTax, answer the same 6 questions about lame shit that you've already answered 3 times trying to get THIS far. File. Oh wait, you can't file, your new updates are not fully ASSimilated. Assimilate updates. Restart. Answer same 6 questions AGAIN, click File. Oh wait. No, the updates you were told to get didn't seem to get the right software, please try again.

Lest I bore you with the details, the drama continues and I'm just going to keep hoping that our ancient home computer can muster the strength to come out a winner in this one so I can get on with my life.


I Should Also Mention
That while the posse was gathered 'round me, one aquaintence came up, put her hands on my belly without asking, then stood there for FAR TOO LONG, hands on my belly, waiting for Murray to do some kind of crazyass boogie. Finally, I said 'she's asleep right now' and she seemed sad to have missed a show.

It kind of kills me, because really, this show that Murray gives? It's for me and Andrea, not for you. Don't people get that?

And before you start to comment with the million and one things I could have said or done to stop her from touching me, rest assured that I considered them all and in the end, chose 'she's asleep right now,' since it was the most polite one.

Were the lady a total stranger, that would have been a very different conversation that would no doubt have involved the words 'fuck' and 'off.'

Assvice Posse
Last night I got accosted by a growing group of well-intentioned women who wanted to know all about my pregnancy. What I discovered pretty quickly was this: the people who know me even a little bit well are actually asking about me. The people who know me in passing are the ones who want to share craploads of information that I didn't ask for, share their own stories or seem absolutely STUNNED that we're not discussing Murray's proposed real name, especially with the General Public.

Suddenly it all makes sense. I return to my rule that sometimes people just want to talk. Once I've figured out who falls into that category, you can count on me to let them do just that. Which is what I did last night, even as two competing assvicers TALKED OVER EACH OTHER about random child-related topics while I just stood there, smiling.

Finally, I am learning some of the finer social graces my mother wishes I'd been blessed with along. FYI, all of the abovementioned social graces start and end with one thing: LISTENING. I'm continually amazed at how much farther I get in the world by just giving myself a nice big pack of shut the hell up.

The highlight of the night was one of the aquaintences asking me what the baby's name is. When I told her we're pretty sure, but not sharing that just yet she goes 'but how do you talk to her if she doesn't have a name?' To which I would have loved to respond: lady, I've known you for 7 years, talked to you every so often and never ONCE have I addressed you by name. It's never bothered our encounters a bit.

But I didn't, I just shut the hell up. Works every time.


All Day Long
From about 2 pm on, EVERY DAY now, I eat. Cashews, trail mix, raisins, cashews, trail mix, raisins. And still, when dinnertime comes, I am ready to eat. I'm sure my new neighbors at work think I'm that pregnant lady who eats (and giggles) all day.

Because oh yeah, I am that lady.

I Just Figured Out
That some of the more rhythmic movements that the wee one has been doing are actually her having the hiccups because she's practicing breathing.

Engrish Joy!
Viv found the most excellent Engrish menu: rahoi.com: May I take your order?. I'm weeping, especially at the coffee drink: Sankist, and The Fruit Enchants. I'd also like a Good to eat mountain with a side of Retchup.

I cannot begin to tell you how many times we've heard this phrase from parents. Most say it with some sort of knowing head-shaking, then look at us like we're insane for doing this by choice. Even though many of them have done it by choice themselves.

What I don't quite get is what they really mean by this. Do they think we did this with no homework whatsoever? Or that we just got horny one night and made a baby for fun? (we're still lesbians, FYI, so it did NOT happen that way, in case you forgot) That is so not the case and anyone who knows us well at all knows that there was an insane amount of planning involved in this kid's conception, that very little has been left to chance. Meaning that we do understand that OUR LIVES WILL CHANGE and after careful consideration of what all that entails (no more hosting sex parties at the house, the end of the hydroponic garden in the basement, turning in my annual pass to swingstock, hiding the porn more carefully and really, the most critical and tough to do, cutting way the fuck back on how much we curse out loud) we STILL decided to have this baby.

The weird thing is, these people never follow up with 'your life will change in these ways: blah, blah blah." No, they just say their saying and shake their heads at the journey we're about to begin (have already begun, what with all the late night Hustling that the kid does).

We've also been advised to have our last hurrahs now, while we still can. Back again to the planning thing. Knowing that we would hopefully soon be with child, we went to DisneyWorld not once, but twice, we went to Australia, we went to Vegas, we went to Canada, we went to Ohio (okay, maybe those trips don't count toward the Last Hurrah credits), we went to Sunnyvale, and oh yes, we went to Palo Alto many times. With 9.5 (or fewer!) weeks left in this pregancy, the only last hurrah I want is to use my last reserve of energy to push out the World's Most Amazing Baby. Then spend the rest of my life being amazed by her.

And yes, her small ass will be going to all the places I mentioned above. She'll be a travelling fool, just like her mammas, who will get to enjoy all of their favorite places through her eyes and who will cherish every minute of being her family, despite having lives that are now irreversably different than they were before her arrival.

All Is Well
Had my 30 week checkup today and el baby is fine. The best part was actually 2 parts: hearing that I ROCKED the glucose screen (thanks, Samantha!) and am all done with that and when the dr. tried to get the kid's heartbeat but she was so busy dancing her morning dance that we only could get glimpses of it. I think she's practicing for her career in the Boogie Nights Revival.

I also got a pre-bill for my part of the cost of the birth, which OF COURSE comes out to $350, which we can pay in installments, like you would if you bought a home gym off the television. Except that in this case, you'll be bringing home a baby instead of a weight set. Seeing all the details laid out was kinda freaky, like, holy shit, we're actually going to have a baby. Soon. And it ain't free (though, pretty much, really).

From here on out, we're there every 2 weeks, then every week. Woah. Craziness. This is officially the Home Stretch.


This Is So Excellent
Some nice person adjusted a billboard for the group that claims they can wash the gay right outta your hair. I give you the sheer genuis that is Change is possible.

Thanks to Peter's Cross Station for the link that made my day.

I suppose it's like anything else you artificially change about yourself -- sure, I can be a blonde for a time but in the end, my roots grow out and I'm most certainly not a blonde. Think what you like, create whatever program you like to 'cure' this ailment, you well-intended hateful-towards-gays folks, but in the end, the blonde grows out and the roots remain.

Status On Pat, or Patus
Our vet called to discuss the seizure situation. We're going to up his meds by 25%, which would either mean cutting his current pills into quarters (messy at best and SO not my event) or getting an additional set of 25% strength pills. So it might get to be a little harder to manage for people who are not us, but we're gonna try.

I sort of wonder if the fact that he's put on a little weight has a lot to do with the meds not working as well. So we're cutting back his food a wee bit, too. I know the phenobarb slows down the metabolism a bit, so he's sort of fighting 2 uphill battles at the same time -- to keep his weight down while maintaining the effectiveness of his seizure meds, which obviously trumps all other things.

We're also okayed to give him some valium when he's acting weird -- he definitely is different for much of the day he has a seizure so we may as well bet that we know him well enough to give that a try. I'll try whatever we have to, if it keeps his seizures to a minimum. But oh, this all makes me so sad.

It's sort of ironic that of our 4 dogs, Pat remains the most special needs (though Gus is closing in) and he's one of the youngest. Zeus remains totally indestructable and we like him that way.

We're trying Pat. We'll never stop trying to keep this under control for you. And I'll never stop melting when you put your ears up all big. You don't do it very often so it gets me every time, you big wrinkly boy.

Not Funny
Note to my new neighbor who has a water feature on their desk: it's really no joke to play that sound ALL DAY with a rather very pregnant woman only a few feet away. Seriously.

Big Night Out
We attempted to meet up with Wen and a group of folks to see some movie about god and gays (part of the Cinequest film fest) but we didn't get tickets the day before and they'd stopped selling them after 11:59 pm that night so in the end, we were SOL and ticket-free.

Because we were there and I was kind of awake, we saw the next movie that was starting: Date Movie. I cannot tell you enough bad things about it, just trust me. It sucked. But had funny moments and it was great to make snide comments to Wen during it. So it wasn't all bad.

Afterwards, I was still kind of awake, so instead of going straight to bed to watch TV, I lived dangerously and sat in the living room to sort through my neglected mail and watch TV. It was the first chance I had to sit in our Fabulous New Glider and man, am I ever glad we forked out the extra cash for the top o' the line. Even with raging heartburn, I can be comfy in that thing, rocking and reclining with the best of them.

The dogs all gathered around me, save Zeus, who was enjoying some stale cheesy poofs on the sly in the kitchen with Andrea. It was really nice to spend some time in another room of the house, even if the sum total of last night's festivities is that today, I'm completely exhausted.

L10N Triumph
Last night i put together a sentence in mandarin that came out to be 'hello, please let me into your butt!'


Yesterday marked our entry into the 30th week of pregnancy. Do you have any idea how long that is? I assure you, unless you've rented out your entire body to what starts out as a wee speck and becomes a kicking little person for this long, you have NO IDEA what 30 weeks feels like in this context.

I don't doubt that if I were waiting to get out of jail, 30 weeks would also seem long.

30 weeks=3/4 of the way there. If I delivered today and gave myself a grade on my gestating skills, that grade would be a C. In my school life, a C was never enough and it's not enough when it comes to gestating. But it's where we are today. C.

I'll feel a little better about the baby's health and chances for life on the outside (again, with that jail thing) with each increase in grade, say C+, B-, etc. Along with each of those grade changes, I expect I'll feel a little worse but that's the way it goes. I've come this far, bitching and complaining all the while, and I expect those skills will carry me to the end, when I earn an A in gestating.

Along with this 75% mark, I am officially 6 weeks away from going out on maternity leave. I'm able to go up to 4 weeks before my due date and I can't get the time back afterwards so I'm planning to take every moment of those 4 weeks.

I've been warned that I'll be bored during that time, but that's a risk I'm more than willing to take. Especially when it means I can visit our babies anytime during this ever-shrinking window of time when our time with them is uninterrupted

I didn't expect that the first box of baby wipes we bought would be for Gus' ass.

Thanks Viv for keeping this song in my head all night. Banana Phone (Badgerphone)

Crap, Part 17
Last night, we were watching Grey's Anatomy on Andrea's laptop because we're cool like that when I heard the Dreaded Thumping Noise coming from the big crate in the kitchen. Andrea did not seem to hear it so she was like 'huh? what?' but I went running rather than stick around to answer.

It was what I'd feared, Pat, having a seizure. Sigh. I sat with him until it finished, talking to him, reminding him that I was there. As seizures go, it wasn't all that big -- he merely drooled a lot and didn't pee, and it was over reasonably fast. As soon as it was over, he seemed to see me right away and even got up with his tail wagging from the first step. Usually, there's a 5-10 minute period where he walks around, tail in High Sulk position, but last night we were spared.

Andrea had the brilliant idea to give him (and everyone else) some treats while he was stumbling around. That got him to sit nicely, to not whine in great confusion and helped him come back to normal a little faster. He came and sat by my side of the bed, looking longingly at the can of Pringles I keep there for emergencies (hey, I'm pregnant, you do what you gotta do) in the same position for no shit, 10 minutes. I guess he was hoping that by the power of staring, the can would open up and Pringles would rain down from heaven onto Pat.

Eventually he returned to normal and got a good night's sleep. But this is the 6th seizure in as many months (though it was 7 weeks past his last one instead of 4) and we're going to have to do something, which will probably mean bloodwork and then an increase in his meds.

Pat, my sweet dumb boy, I love you so. And I am so sorry that in addition to the burden you have of being extremely cute (but not bright) you have to suffer through these seizures. Rest assured that they scare me a lot more than they do you, and that not a one goes by that I don't worry about you and do everything I can to make them as easy as possible for you.


Another Milestone
Today we finally went for the hospital tour. I was worried that we'd waited too long, that somehow by going at 30 weeks instead of 20 or 25, we would have missed being able to take advantage of something or who the hell knows what. But no, there were two women who were substantially more pregnant than I am, which apparently means wearing really tight shirts and in one case, extremely pointy shoes.

Of course everyone else there was straight (I get this, 10% of the population is gay, that translates to me not expecting to be awash in a sea of queers all the time, or really, anytime except during pride). The only annoying thing about this, besides knowing that they probably weren't planning to bring their marriage licenses to the hopsital the way we're planning to bring our DP certificate or that they also probably weren't worried about having to get an amended birth certificate later because the records people didn't have the right one in stock was how the leader referred to the non-birthmom parent.

It meant that when the tour leader talked about the other parent, she said "dad," or in one really special case, "if dad can't be there, whoever mom chooses to be there with her" after which I leaned over to Andrea and said "I pick you."

But I didn't care too much. We both understood that Andrea's the baby's other parent, and could substitute other, more appropriate, words in for "Dad" in our heads as needed.

We saw the postpartum rooms, which are um, a bit spare and made me realize that I'm gonna want to get the hell out of there asap after the kid is born. We also saw the room with the ice machine (Very Important, I like my ice quite a bit) and then the centerpiece, the Labor/Delivery room.

While we were there, I checked out the bidet.

I was all good until she showed us how the bed comes apart (it's a Birthing Bed, so the bottom half comes off when you need to do your thing with the bowling ball between the legs) and then I got a little queasy. Like, um, oh, in 10 weeks or less, we'll actually be there, eating birthing ice, using the birthing bidet and pushing out a baby.

It was good to see, good to know what all goes on and how to enter the joint when The Time Comes. But it was a little scary, too, since the main event between entering and leaving this building involves something both extremely painful and miraculous.


The Best Part
About my new cube that is, in fact, only half a cube, is that I am once again reunited with Bubbles and we are now seperated by only 1 cube. It's not the same as if Carol was here between us, but it's better than being so sad and lonely.


Number 9
I'm all packed and ready to go -- moving to what will be cube #9 in the last 2 years. I've never (1) worked at the same company for so long and not even been super annoyed at the place (ClearCase does NOT count) or my co-workers in all that time and (2) worked somewhere where I've needed to move cubes so damn much.

It's always about consolidating this group or that group, but in the end, most of the work I do doesn't require a lot of desk-to-desk talking (except when I get all duh and needed Carol to merely stand up near me and I'd figure it out) so I could sit next to Dick Cheney for all I care, providing he didn't shoot at me.

But this time, with me in the new group and the new group doing stuff I've not done much of professionally, I'm actually grateful that I'm finally moving to be near them.

The sucky part is that the movers could come anytime after 3 so thanks to a bunch of meetings, I've lost pretty much a whole day of work.

Thanks A Lot
To the asshole who stole my parking space at lunch. Thanks for noticing that I was there first, then waving me off once you pulled up, then stealing the space and telling me I was wrong, that you were there first.

Bubbles can vouch for this: we were there first. And sir, when I told you your actions weren't very nice, I wasn't kidding.

They weren't.

Getting Closer
My parents bought their plane tickets for when the baby is due to arrive. They're flexible, so if our wee one decides to make a slightly early arrival, they'll still get here. Woo!

Me: So, mom, are you gonna be able to leave her after a week?

Mom: I won't have to. I'll just take her with me. They have these things called bottles, you know.

Something tells me this kid is going to have The Best Grandparents Ever. And for that, I am insanely grateful.


Today's Theme: Driving!
In a tribute to what has become today's driving theme, I give you Toonces the Driving Cat, which imho, remains the best set of SNL skits ever. Though More Cowbell is a close second, even if Bill doesn't think it's funny.

We used to watch Toonces in action and laugh hysterically during the show, then later in the week, long after the episode was over, I'd be in the cafeteria line and the image of Toonces would pop into my head and inspire an instant laughing fit.

Thanks to Rich for inspiring this little trip down memory lane. You rock, Rich. And your blog? Totally needs more cowbell!

Alien Invasion
I swear to God it feels like the baby is trying to kick her way out today. Go, kid, go! Just don't come out yet.

Grosser Than Gross
Caution: contains sqeamish content

In my now 7 years as a doggie parent, I have been called on to do many unpleasant tasks. These included giving pills to Ellie, who could find the most buried of pills inside even the tastiest of treats, picking fleas off of all of Gus' parts when he first came home, cleaning a zillion and one nasty hound-dog ears, helping Alice try to cough up the world's stickiest mucus and giving a zillion filthy foster dogs a bath when they first came home.

But nothing compares to where we now are with Gus. And his Very Special Anal Tumor. I did what will now be a bi-weekly butt cleaning last night and omg.

That is by far, the most disgusting task I have been called on to perform during my time as a doggie parent. Ew ew ew ew ew.

I will spare you the details but I can only assure you that the fact that we need to do it and that we're actually doing it means that we love our Gus very much.

He came in and laid down at the foot of our bed last night while we were watching TV. I surprised him by leaning over to pet him for a while (usually he'll come over and ask for this directly and I of course comply) and he was The Happiest Boy In The World.

If that's all it takes, a little butt cleaning and some unexpected petting, I'm happy to help.

Ready To Rock
We'd gotten the call about a week ago that our fabulous glider and ottoman had come in, but we had to wait to pick it up until the stars aligned and we got rid of our nastyass old couch that the dogs enjoyed more than the rest of us and until we could get some kind soul to help Andrea schlep the thing inside the house.

Lucky for us, Carol was able to help so we were on our way. I guided us down to the store, where we had to wait for an associate to heft it into the car, not because I'm pregnant, no, but because it's on a dolly and dollies cannot be unattended. Right.

Finally, we get it into Andrea's ginormous car and head off to have a tasty dinner at Chevy's (the Murrito strikes again). Afterwards, Carol said she could get us home so I loaded Murray and myself into the car for what I thought would be a short trip, say like this:

But instead, Carol took me (with Andrea following behind) on a Grand Circle Tour of San Jose, which was not unlike the kind you take on the Disneyland Railroad, except that eventually, after viewing pretty much all of Carol's old high school haunts, we arrived at my house via this route. Which is all cool, because I love all Things Disneyland, including that train and the grand canyon you can see from it.

As you can see, the routes do, in fact, lead to the same destination, but oh the Tour was so worth it. Thanks for the help with the schlepping and the Tour, Carol!

And our fabulous glider/ottoman combo made it home safe and sound. Gus capped off the night by showing Carol as many of his toys as possible before she headed home.