Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Freebie List

Long before Friends, Monica, Chandler, Ross, Rachel, Joey and Phoebe, had a celebrity "freebie list"my grandparents had one.   A freebie list is a set of people who you are allowed to cheat on your spouse with, should they come to the door of your house for you.  The other spouse would have to stay behind, knowing it was a "once in a lifetime opportunity" for the other.  Yes, my Methodist grandparents.  Both have been gone for a long while now, as well as the celebrities.  On the long running sitcom Friends, the list was 5 celebrities, but for my grandparents, they only got one:  Rita Hayworth for my grandpa and Gregory Peck for my grandma.

This is how I imagine the scenario playing out.  My grandparents would be sitting by a fan in the house, on a hot Central Californian day, playing bridge, or rather a 2 person card game, and drinking water, while my dad and uncle were out in the street riding bikes.  A black car would pull into the drive, and either Rita or Greg would ring the bell.  My grandma would make a cute surprise noise, and my grandpa would get the door.  Depending on the whoever it was, the grandparent in question would quietly go to the bedroom and fill a suitcase, and without a word, leave in the black car for Hollywood.  As if a switch had gone off in his or her head, like in Invasion of the Body Snatchers (it is the 50's in my imagination, so I'm sticking to the theme).

There are a lot of holes in this plan beyond the morality of it.  I'm positive my grandparents told their children this quirky plan, to reassure them that they never would leave one another (as well as just kidding around, they were funny folks). They said it to confirm their love for one another until death parted them.  What are the chances of the most famous movie actors of the day coming to the front door?  Imagine George Clooney coming to your house, right?  What are the chances?

Inadvertently, the legacy that my grandparents left us was probably different than their intention.  For my father, it left him with worry as a child:  what if those famous people just do happen by our house in Merced California?  It is something a kid could worry about.  For me it left me with a huge crush on Gregory Peck!

Friday, February 18, 2011

good husband/bad man Part II

Last week Silas had an endoscopy.  The doctor and nurses sedated him to see why his stomach has been giving him trouble.  I was his ride home, so after the procedure I found him in the recovery room.  He was behind a curtain with a young nurse (younger than me) on a cot, laying on his side.  The pretty nurse told me he was very sleepy, and very chatty, then she smiled at me, sweetly sideways.  This is the part of the story where my concern for his condition turned to curiosity.

The nurse told me every time they tried to wake him, he would groggily look at them and say, "You're not pretty enough to be my wife!".  He would fall back into his dopey sleep, and they would try to wake him again, and he would say the same thing.  Had he thought that it was going to be me waking him up each time?  The nurses giggled, and were not offended.

I shook him awake, and he looked at me and smiled.  He was dopey!  He was telling the nurse how he might invent a program for her computer to make it work better, just before she stepped out of the curtain.  I told him what he had said to the nurses, and he was embarrassed a bit, so he said loudly, through the curtain, "you are pretty enough to be my wife".  I could hear her giggling behind the curtain.

I learned two things about what my husband is actually thinking, without his filter.  The first is that he is a pretty big nerd.  He holds back a lot of technical details and geeky computer inventions (my 5th grade son also has this trait).  I'm grateful for his nerd-i-ness, as it puts food on the table, and he is well rounded and social.  I'm also grateful I'm not responsible for all those details in his head.

The second thing I learned, was really just a reminder.  Silas thinks I am the most beautiful person he knows.  Compared to the other women in the doctor's office, if I were comparing objectively, which is a terrible thing to do,  there was no winner.  I might be the winner, in that I was not in hospital scrubs, but my 'mom uniform', which might be a 6 out of 10 rather than a 5.

How Silas views Tyson

What I actually look like.
Every girl wants her husband to think she is the prettiest girl in the room, and mine does.  The flip side, which is the 'bad man' part, is it could mean that he thinks you aren't as pretty as I am.  I don't think the two are mutually exclusive.   I think the real danger is ifthought I was prettier than you, and I don't.  I don't even care what you look like, I like you anyway.  I think Silas doesn't actually care what I look like either, because I can be an ugly person, he loves me despite myself.  Our time together has helped him love me: body, mind and spirit, and I reciprocate.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Teacher Credentialing, Huh?

i recieves this here letter froms the State of california credenttialling dept. Todays. I sended the monies in just like they said, $51 for the prosess of. 
I realize that I'm not the authority on spelling or grammar, but c'mon!!  I'm worn a bit thin, as they would say to send in $51 in black and white, then the next day send me such a poorly written email.  I wonder what state the author of this letter went to school in?
The letter asks me what I think, and I think if you are writing to teachers and prospective teachers, write more gooder.
Maybe I'm thinking too much.

dateThu, Feb 17, 2011 at 11:19 AM
subjectRe: Credential application

  11:19 AM (17 minutes ago)

Hi Tyson,

The Commission receives your application packet and a check $51.00 again.    It is insufficient fee. The current application fee is $55.00.  You may send me an additional amount $5.00 to my attention as I am holding your stuffs.  Let me know what you think.

Cashiering Unit
Certification, Assignment and Waiver Division
Commission on Teacher Credentialing

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

good husband/bad man

I've named this blog for my husband, and have quite a bit to say on the subject of his goodness and badness. I've so much to say it may be the start of a series, or chapters.  First, some disclaimers:  I have been married to this bad good husband since 1995, and despite himself, I'm in love with him, no matter what.  I'm in love with him more now than ever and have been married to him all of my adult life, and a bit of my childhood (who's an adult at 19?).  I won't be bashing him. 

On with the story......

 Last summer we traveled to the Czech Republic with friends.  While touring Prague, Silas, the spouse in the spotlight, bought me a yellow rose at a market while we waited for everyone to buy souvenirs.  From the market, we took public transportation to the Little Eiffel Tower to look out over the entire city.  Walking through a garden to the tower, I dropped my rose.  We noticed just in time to see a school aged girl find the rose on the ground, and pick it up with obvious delight.

I noticed the girl's face the same moment as Silas was bounding like Tigger back down the path towards her.  I saw him squat down and talk to the girl for a moment, then she gave him the rose.  As he ran like a school boy back towards the group, my friend leaned in and said, "Silas, he is a good husband, but a bad man".  This is exactly what I was feeling as well.  What a sweet guy to go get the rose, what a jerk for taking a rose from a little girl.  The passing comment of a friend, summed up Silas, I just never thought of it so clearly.  Silas loves me, despite all others.  This is a very attractive attribute from my perspective, and only sometimes mildly embarrassing, and usually not.

After some awkward moments walking, I told him  I would rather it would be alright to let the girl keep the rose, and I'll keep the memory of his kindness: getting me a rose, giving it to a pretty little girl.  As we entered the tower he did give the rose back to the girl.  I'm sure she will always remember a stranger giving her a rose (her mom was there too).  The girl was all smiles as we headed up the stairs of the tower.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Small Library

Any free moment that our boy has you can find him reading. He has out-read his dad and me in the 6 years he has been riffing quickly through the pages of the Youth Fiction section at the library. Some moms take extra time to make sure their son reads enough, I sometimes offer a computer game or cartoon up to our boy.

This month I realized that most of the books that are appropriate for him (and some not), he has read. The only series I could find that he has not read was Anne of Green Gables, which I don't know if I can get him to read (though he will love it once he starts, the feisty heroin might remind him of his momma!).

He is 10, and on the precipice of being able to read more edgy things, and by edgy I mean Jack London. I was a bad mom and let him read "Call of the Wild" when he was eight, or so, and it ended in tears and sadness for his young, sweet, heart.

On that note, last week he decided to do a biography on his current hero, Brian Jacques, for school. He wrote the Redwall series, which pits good against evil in the form of rodents. It is perfect for my kid. He learned that Jacques had visited our local book store, and was daydreaming about getting to meet him (he is a kid and didn't realize that Jacques is from England, thousands of miles away). He went on and on about it, just last week.

Monday I had to tell him the sad news, that over the weekend, Brian Jacques died suddenly. I told him, and he cried, and hugged his dad. We talked about how lucky we were to have been able to know a part of Jacques, through his writing.

My boy is on the cusp of the world opening up to him. He will learn about the vastness of our world, and the suffering in it, because he is a reader. I am loving my boy for his innocence while he still has it, and am excited for all the conversations I can have with him, about great ideas, far away places, history, science, and religion as he grows. Now that nearly all the books in the Junior section have been read, soon he can climb the stairs and start in on the Science Fiction, Mysteries, Biographies and Novels.