Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Some Carpool Entertainment

Have pigs been flying and I just have not noticed?

Is it just me, or are our small impressionable children having conversations that we, as children never ever had?

I am not even referring to anything inappropriate (although there is plenty of that), just conversation that is rather surprising from 2, seven year old girls.

Carpool just becomes more and more entertaining for me, though. I have no need to turn the radio on for mindless entertainment, I can count on absurd chit chat from little girls.

This past week, the 2nd grade girls were given an interesting assignment. They were required to cut out a tracing of a turkey and then "disguise" it as something else by decorating it. Their one rule was, no coloring. They had to utilize materials to "disguise" their turkeys.

Of course, So finished her project within five minutes of walking in the house, the first day she could. Because, frankly, she is nuts like that.

Her friend Z. brought hers into carpool the Monday it was due.

She chose to "disguise" her turkey as a Pittsburgh "Steelers" football player. And because I am good friends with Z.'s parents, I know exactly where this idea of hers came from.

If her turkey was not a Steelers player, it would have been any Republican politician, more specifically, Ronald Reagan. But her father's other obsession - the Steelers, of course.

And then the conversation began...

Z. "Look at my Turkey. I made a helmet out of tin foil, and used so much yellow and black construction paper, gave him googly eyes and if I was not Jewish, I would have made the football out of actual pig skin. And it says "Ben" on the back."
(because a seven year old can not spell "Roethlisberger" of course. Sheesh - I can hardly spell it.)

So. "Cool, but I think the Bears are a good team."
(seriously, whose daughter is she?)

Z. "Well the Bears have been doing awful this year, I really like the Steelers."

So. "The Bears are going to pick it up in the end season, but it may be too late."

Z. "Last night the "Steelers" played the Cincinnati Bungolz. It was a good game, but the Steelers lost."

It was at this point that I almost hit the car in front of me.


I am sure she meant Bengals, but then I could be mistaken. I would not put it past her father to have referred to them as
"Bung Holes".

And the conversation went on, but alas, we reached school and I would have to find myself another form of entertainment for the ride home.

What happened to conversations about "My Little Ponies" and "Cabbage Patch Kids"?

(OK, I realize now it would be "Zhu Zhu Pets" and "American Girl Dolls")

But certainly NOT Bears, Steelers and Bungolz.

If you remember, last year my carpool day was Tuesday. And I may have kvetched about Tuesdays from time to time.

Is it weird that I now look forward to my Monday Carpool day?

Can't wait to see what goes on in next week's carpool "episode".

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Not Me Monday - Competitive Style

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was originally created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing to their backs this week.

It was not me who has not written a "Not Me! Monday" in

I certainly did not avoid writing the "Not Me! Mondays" because I am not around to post early enough to make top ten and therefore pathetically decide to just not post NMM altogether.

I would never be THAT pathetic competitive.

Speaking of competitive, I did not run 6.2 miles yesterday as part of training for an upcoming half marathon.

I did not run those 6.2 miles after not running at all for two weeks because I was so not busy taking care of a bunch of sickies in my house.

I did not run 6.2 miles two weeks after last running only 5 miles.

I do not, in any sort of way, consider myself a STUPID person.

But, it is not the same BRILLIANT person who ran 6.2 miles yesterday, whose last run two weeks ago was 5 miles, who is now walking like she just got off a horse and will not be able to be in the top ten this week because she will be laying prone on a Chiropractors table when NMM posts


It is not me who is rethinking this whole "gotta run a half marathon to prove something to myself" thing, because it is not me who thinks people should only be running when being chased.

I am not now wondering if I can RUN home quick enough from the Chiropractor's office so that I can make the NMM top ten.

Like I did not mention before, I am so not pathetic.

And my back and hips are certainly not in agony.

How is your Monday, NOT going?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Life is so fragile.

We all know this concept. It mostly dwells deep in the crevices of our mind. But every so often, something concrete happens and we are reminded, at the bitter surface, just how fragile life is.

And yet, when this reminder surfaces and forces us to face a harsh reality, we are not supposed to carry it with us every minute of every waking hour. We are supposed to bury this idea of the tenderness of life, back into the depths of our brains, so that we do not live our lives constantly concerned about what is lurking around the corner for ourselves and our loved ones.

I personally have a hard time with this, with the part of reburying it. I tend to dwell on the fragility of life and consume my time deathly afraid of whether or not something tragic can or will unexpectedly happen in my family. Then I just pray. I pray that G-d does not touch my friends and family with any tragedy or sorrow, and I try to move on. And I am fine, until the next reminder of the fragility of life, and ..... well, its a vicious cycle really.

A day ago, a 61 year old man in my community,a husband, father, grandfather - seemingly healthy, unexpectedly lost his life.

I grew up across the street from this man. He and his wife were still living in the same home right across from my parents home. Their house was the one I went to, when I got home from school and realized I was a latchkey child that day. I played baseball with their sons in front of our house. But now that I am married, with kids, living blocks away, I only see him on an extremely random basis. Frankly, I think whole years have gone by and I do not really see them.

But this past weekend - I saw him twice.

I was at the grocery store Saturday night, when a friend of my parents approached me to ask me about a kosher symbol on a box of ice cream. When I did not have the answer, he looked down the aisle and spotted someone else who may have the answer.

"Rabbi P."

he called...

And Rabbi P. looked up with a smile.

On Sunday, it was a beautiful November day here in Chicago. It was a delicious 70 degrees. I decided to take Bam for a walk, from my house to Target. It is quite a distance from my house, but I have been jogging 5 miles lately, so this walk on this gorgeous day would be nothing.

On the way, I stopped at my parents home for a visit. When I left, there was Rabbi P., across the street in front of his home. He was taking advantage of the surprisingly mild temperatures and was raking leaves into a black garbage bag. When our eyes met, I nodded as if to say hello and he returned the nod. He looked his usual slim and healthy self.

That was Sunday morning. Monday evening, he was playing racquetball with his son at a local community center, where he collapsed, never to return home.

To see someone, so alive and vibrant and healthy looking one day, and hear of their sudden demise, the next, is quite a shock. But no one could be more shocked then his wife and sons. My heart goes out to them. It is a testament to the fragility of life.

And yet, for the rest of us -

Life goes on.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

If Only Orah Had A "P" In It

Whenever I have to make calls to the credit card company, or the cable company, or my parents, they ask me how my name is spelled.
(So my parents don't really ask me how to spell my name, but they do ask me who I am about five ti

No matter how hard I try to enunciate, it see
ms people do not hear the correct lettering. Maybe it is because I do not speak "Punjab", I don't know. In the phone book, I can be found under "Olah". When does the letter "L" sound anything like an "R"?

So years ago I came up with a quicker way to convey the correct spelling of my name. It seems that this revelation of mine came when I realized how some names are just so Universally recognized, that NO letter spelling is necessary.

"Hi, I would like you to lower my interest rate".

"May I have your name please"?

"Sure, just write down OPRAH, then remove the "P".

"Oh my G-d, I can't believe I am speak
ing to Oprah".

"Seriously, if I was Oprah would I friggin' care how high my interest rate was? IT'S OPRAH


Speaking of Oprah...

I was just at her show today.
Not standing outside, desperate.
No, I was an actual audience member. And guess what? Third time is so NOT a charm. I totally thought that I would be blogging about how I was jumping up and down and shrieking like a little gi
rl because I just found out I made it on Oprah's "Most Favorite Things" show. I was all ready to post pictures of all the incredible loot I came home with to make y'all jealous. But this is the third time I sat through the most uninteresting, depressing topic ever. And we did not even get to sit through a whole show. Half of this show was already taped and we sat through two segments and spent the rest of the hour listening to some Oprah stalkers fans try to get Oprah to realize it would benefit her to become their new best friend.

And I woke up at 4 friggin' 30 in the morning to subject myself to this.

The process was still fun and exciting. I went with my friend, Miss S. and my friend/ blogger Rayli

The topic - Addiction and Inter

When the Oprah employee who was warming up the audience asked if anyone in the audience had any addictions they wanted to share, I wanted to raise my hand and stand up and proudly and bravely announce,

"Yes, I am addicted to THE crappy Oprah top
ics, since those are the only shows I end up getting reservations for."

Don't get me wrong. I actually do not take it
for granted that I had my reservation request granted altogether, and for the third time. There was a couple in the audience who claimed to have been trying for 24 years (the entire time Oprah has been in production) to get tickets.

But, do I need to sit in a row, bookended by an o
ld lady who was snoring. I mean, that is how boring this show was. But it became funny when Rayli was totally accused of being the snorer by an Oprah staff member, HA HA.

The only thing that could have made the show more exciting would have been if the pregnant woman in the row behind me who is due this coming Monday would have gone into labor. And I the experienced labor and delivery, and Neonatal Intesive Care nurse could have jumped in and saved the day. But alas, the boring topic was just not enough to put her into labor.

I do have to say, one thing consistent every time I have been to Oprah's show (besides the lame ass topic), Oprah is very personable and friendly with the audience and loves to interact with audience members before and after the taping. But she did let that one stalker fan go on and on and on and on.... Maybe Oprah is a bit TOO nice and could not bring herself to shut the woman up. I would have shut the woman up.

By the time the taping ended, I was feeling the beginnings of a migraine. But we had to stop at the "O" store and NOT buy anything, (even though I really could use that pink key chain with the "O" on it, ahem, ahem ... Rayli ... it's almost Chanukah...)

And then we had to stop at the "HARPO" sign and take some pictures with Jason - heroine addict and whatever his name wa
s - food addict. Well Rayli did, anyway. I just wanted a picture with Rayli and Miss S., but made the mistake of asking Jason - heroine addict's girlfriend to take the pictures and she kept getting all "artistic" with my camera and taking shots at weird angles. Either she is a photography addict or she is smoking something as well.

In the meantime, my head was beginning to throb so terrible, that we cancled our lunch plans so we could al
l go home and crash in bed.

But at this point, I am thinking I may just have the flu.

So I will cut this short and leave you with some pictures
(because I know Rayli is patiently wa
iting for me to make my Oprah post first, so she can finally post hers.)

This is the best picture we could get with Miss O.
Can you see her in the middle? There is some glare coming off her face.

This is across from Harpo studios right outside the O store. The guy who took this picture is so gonna get fired. His only job was to watch people exit the O store and relay via walkie talkie (to someone) how many have just exited. He missed five people as he took this picture, but I was kind and filled him in.

Well, obviously us in front of THE sign.

These were the two guests on the show. That is Jason- heroine addict on the left, and whatever his name is - food addict on the right (in case you could not guess which was which). Food addict is actually half the size he used to be. He and Jason seem to have become fast friends, cuz
apparently all addicts become friends. However, food addict may like Jason more than we know, for it seems he also purged himself of a secret while in rehab and has come out as a gay man.

And the two of them have made one other fast friend...


Even though I just could not get into the topic of today's show, I still love me some Oprah. And we still had fun.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

I Have The Right To Remain Silent (but then I would have no post)


By reading ahead you may unwillingly become an accessory to a crime.

I am officially a delinquent. And I have taken my husband down with me.

I am a miscreant,
law breaker.

I am ashamed to admit that I have contributed to the pervasiveness of some criminal activity.

But even worse, I have no regrets.

Two Saturday nights ago, my husband generously offered to take me out. We were considering many options, but by the time we actually made it out of the house, many of those options had become obsolete. So we settled on seeing a movie.

I wanted to see the action packed manly movie "Law Abiding Citizen", but my overworked, stressed out hubby wanted something lighter and amusing. Only, there were no comedies that I really thought, appealing.

So I looked through the newspaper and told him of the few comedies that were playing and then he said,
"I would see "Motherhood".


I want to see Gerard Butler kick the faulty judicial process in the A$$ and Hun wants to see Uma Thurman kvetch about life as a mother.

If my husband has FORGOTTEN what it looks like when a woman kvetches about her motherly duties, then we REALLY have not been spending enough time together. Thank G-d for date night.

So I agreed to see it .... with a warning.

There would be a Q & A session at the end, a discussion if you will. Hun would have to share his thoughts as the movies depiction of "Motherhood" relates to his real life placement married to a woman who is, well, a Mother.

Of course, I was totally joking. But Hun was agreeable. I think he would have written me a 500 word essay critique on the movie had I asked him. He was obviously in a work coma, and was not digesting anything I was saying anyway. He just wanted to see a movie that he did not have to put much thought into.

And with that, we were off.

Before the movie started, we had time to go to a near by "Barnes and Nobles" where I got a much needed Venti fix of caffeine at "Starbucks" and Hun purchased some sought after "Political" magazines. (NO, that is not a euphemism for some sort of dirty magazine, they WERE actually Political Magazines.)

Then, back to the theater...

So for two hours I sat there and pretty much watched my life unfold right before my eyes. I mean, I seriously could have stared at myself in a mirror for two hours and would have seen the same sacrifices, stress, frustration, commitment, joy, pride... Uma's character was even a "Mommy" blogger. Her blogging was pretty much the main premise. Hun laughed when Uma kept calling her husband on his cell phone and he would never answer.
Why is that funny to him? It is so NOT funny when it happens in MY life.

When the movie was finished, I sort of felt as if I had never left my home that evening. It was not satisfying to me. There was no new wisdom to be had from that movie.

Hun grabbed his bag of highly entertaining Political magazines and we left the theater, and I still wanted my date night.

I looked ahead of me, and asked Hun,
"What time is it"?

"It's 10:50, why"?

"Great, perfect, let's go".

"Go where"?

"Right there, started at 10:40".

Next thing you know, we went from theater 11 to theater 13 and just in time (missed previews) for "Law Abiding Citizen".

At first we sat down in one of the head craning front row seats because, even I did not think I would stay the entire time. Certainly, Hun would never...

After two minutes of a most disturbing opening scene, we were riveted. And we were also disturbed by the cricks in our necks, so we decided to move up to locate better seats. But this was not your "Motherhood" for a few lame couples, this place was packed.

I found a row, one guy sitting at the aisle, an empty seat, a couple and another empty seat. So I kindly asked the couple if they wouldn't mind moving down a seat so we can create two seats together. Then it occurred to me as we were entering the row, that I never asked the guy on the aisle if the seat next to him was actually occupied. But we all know the lonely guy who has to see the manly movie alone, and thus the seat was available.

At about 20 minutes into the movie, I had already forgotten about my wayward ways and my bad influence on Hun. (If you know my husband, he is as straight as an arrow. I would have loved to just send him into a 7/11 to shoplift a Hershey bar just for the sake of it, but I would have to settle for movie thievery.) But just as I was getting comfortable, I could see out of the corner of my left eye, a huge, burly usher with a flashlight walking up the aisle stairway towards my row.

Please pass my row
Please pass my row
Please pass my row

No such luck.

He stood exactly AT my row and his flashlight shone across my lap. I felt like the Gestapo had arrived and my heart was racing.

Do not make eye contact
Do not make eye contact
Do not make eye contact

I was sure there were security cameras all throughout that building that watched us as we made our nefarious walk out one theater into the next and the usher was trying desperately to identify the culprits in the dark. I was expecting that we would be taking a walk of shame any minute.

But after what felt like an eternity, although probably less than a minute, he turned and walked away.

And we sat, and watched the entire movie. This movie was, suspenseful, riveting, a roller coaster ride of thrills and spills, nothing like my life the movie "Motherhood".

And at the end, Hun remarked,
"That was better than I expected."


But I will tell ya something, Karma is a bitch.

It seems that while watching the movie, Hun's very desirable Political magazines went missing. We looked everywhere. In the original seats and the current seats, under and over, no where to be found.

I didn't lose anything though, so what does that mean?

So who is the "Law Abiding Citizen"?


And it felt soooo good.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Something's Got To Give -


Are women really as multifunctional as we claim to be? We pride ourselves on our exceptional multitasking abilities. But is this phenomenon really truthful?

Yes, I can have a conversation on the phone, update my Facebook status, hold a 5 month old on my left hip and mix a mean bottle of formula with my right hand all at the same time, but I am not referring to those moments we women become a "Cirque du Soleil" juggling act.

I am referring to the grander picture.

That picture that captures us in our true light, as we take way to much on our plates.

Some of us work outside the home, some of us don't. Either way, beyond office work or housework, we are always working on something. We chauffeur our children to extracurricular activities. We join "PTA" and "Sisterhoods", because "Motherhood" is not enough. We volunteer to coordinate something or another for one organization or another. We join gyms or run marathons or try "Bollywood" dance classes. We become botonists and landscapers and furniture refurbishers and professional couponers and savvy shoppers, and at some point we may just want to sit down and watch "Grey's Anatomy" uninterrupted.

But in order to do it ALL, something has to give.

The laundry piles up a bit longer than we hoped. Our dining room table becomes a petri dish of bacteria-like growth called "clutter". We don't wash the dinner dishes until after breakfast the next day. Instead of home cooked meals, we resort to carry out.

The truth is, we CAN NOT do it ALL, ALL of the time.

Because to do that, we would not be human. We would be androids who look just like ourselves built by a very wise and wealthy woman.

And I imagine, those women who are not fortunate to have a partner in their life to help them avoid spreading themselves too thin, are not faring any better.

And so, these past two weeks, what I chose to let go -

my blog.

In order to be an appropriate functioning mother, who felt very much like a single parent while Hun was working extraordinarily to provide for his family, I LET GO OF MY BLOG.

I did not want to. I did not completely do so by choice. I figured it would behoove me to continue with the laundry so my family members would not have to go naked. I kept up with the dish washing so my house would not reek of dried on gravy bits. I prevented my dining room table from growing anything funky. And I am pretty sure my children were sent off to school hygienically acceptable, with completed homework and lunch in their bags.

But my blog ..... given a large dose of tranquilizing meds, enough to last two weeks.

I am very proud of my husband who has created a whole new line in his business as well as new product, but the busier he becomes, the busier I become. And it was grueling.

He has been extremely busy for way more than two weeks, working on his latest projects, but two weeks ago, he was preparing to debut a new line at a food show, and this past week he wast out of town at THAT food show.

I digress to make a public plea.

My husband loves me and supports me and the things I choose to do, but does not care for the world of blogging. I do not refer to him too much in my posts and I do not talk too much about his work. However, he knows he will come up from time to time, because he chose to marry me. And with that comes .... my blog and all who are in my life. For those of you who know my husband IRL, please to not approach him and chit chat about all the things you know of him via my blog. He does not care to hear it. And what he does not know can not hurt him.

He was so busy, that out of guilt complete and utter love and devotion, he took me out the Saturday night before he went out of town. (But more on that in the next post.)

Would his hard work have been enough to cause me to take a blogcation?

Probably not.

But here is how it works in my household.

When Hun is not around, that is when Murphy and his crappy law shows up.

I don't even know how long it would take me right now to link to my previous post about the time I got some bizarre phone calls in middle of the night when Hun was away. It was 3 in the morning and the same call and hang up came repeatedly, leaving me to believe I was about to be murdered in my sleep. So that left me with no choice, but to NOT fall asleep.

But I will link to this one, which is aptly titled

Murphy's Law Can Suck It!!! .

And I link to that one, because it was Deja friggin' vu all over again.

And why is 3 in the morning the magic number?

On top of one teething five month old, who has me up all night "Catering" to his bizarre needs, Ro decided that vomit is a necessity when Hun is away.

First, just call me Emeril Lagasse.
My baby has learned to roll from his stomach to his back. That is fine enough. But he has, since birth, been sleeping on his belly. He does not care to sleep on his back. But he does care to constantly, roll from his belly to his back throughout the night, waking himself up unnecessarily, causing me to flip him over, pretty much on the hour, like he is a flapjack.
Yes, I am Emeril Lagasse, all .... night .... long.

And on Tuesday night, oh the joys of vomit. Not once, twice to be exact. But when there was no more vomit, uh, well, there is always that other end of the body.

And Ro did me the great service of NOT making it to the bathroom. So there I was, flipping babies and scrubbing puke out of carpet at 3 in the morning, and... what is that?

Is someone barking?

Are you friggin' kidding me?

Does Ate have croup, AGAIN?

Flipping babies, scrubbing vomit, setting up humidifiers,
thank you So for being an obliging child this past week.

Oh, wait, So is my child who likes to wake up at 5 AM and drag chairs and slam cabinet doors looking for anything she can turn into a project.

I love my kids. I love being a mother. But it is much more enjoyable when I can share these unexpected "duties" with my partner in life. Although I typically can't. Because these are special "duties" which only arise when my partner in life is happily tucked away in some child free hotel room somewhere.

So sue me for taking a blogcation. Something had to give. And there was no way it was going to be "Grey's Anatomy".