Monthly Archives: November 2012

Human V Butterfly

We survived the book fair. The book fair days (2) coincided with early dismissal and parent/teacher interviews so on day one of the book fair, we killed 45 minutes looking at books, then I had my fifteen minute interview (Kid: Awesome. Teacher: So young.), and then we came home with two extra children for a playdate. Wow! Was that ever a day when I felt like moving to a desert island with a big bottle of Malibu.

Of course that day I forgot my wallet, so we had to go BACK to the book fair the following day. I figured this would be easy peasy; the kids had already looked at everything the day before so they would each be able to pick a book quickly — ha ha stop me if you’ve heard this one before!

No, book fair day two looked just like day one except most of the books were sold out, and I had already read everything and chatted with everyone I knew. Fresco picked his book quickly but Trombone. OH DEAR GOD. The child loves books, always has. And now he can read, so he loves them even more. He went through the place and picked up every single book and looked at the back and the last page and the first page and then put it down again and moved on to the next.

It was like last Christmas when I got a gift card for a local giant mall. What a great gift, one I really appreciated. SA got one too and he went to Chapters and spent it in ten minutes. I spent two months with the damn thing. Do I get three t-shirts? A pair of shoes? $50 worth of Body Shop hand cream? A very expensive face lotion at Kiehls? OMG OMG OMG. Watching T at the bookfair was like that, except I was not getting anything for myself, so even less compelling.

We spent some time browsing and discussing which things were books and which were not (stickers: not a book! Spy kit: not a book! Captain Underpants: A book!) and I strongly suggested some books to Trombone and he made noises like “yeah whatever” at me.

That was when the librarian’s daughter, who was about age 3, started a show. She was this adorable, curly-haired reincarnation of Shirley Temple and she had a little singing and dancing routine that ended with jazz hands and a repetition of “I’m a princess now! I’m a princess now!!” We clapped and I asked Trombone if he was done yet and he said no and I said OK five more minutes and then little Shirley started her next song, which went like this, with great pathos,

“The butterfly! Eats the human! The butterfly! Eats the HUMAN! The butterfly! Eats the HUUUUMAAAAN!”

At first I wondered if she was the soul sister of Megan’s daughter who .. well it’s hard to explain here but a) she’s adorable and b) she would sing a song like that. Then I just laughed and laughed until tears fell to my feet and formed a giant puddle. Verse two:

“The HUMAN eats the BUTTERFLY! The human! Eats the butterfly! The Human! Eats the BUTTERFLYYYYYY!”

Jazz hands. Spin. Bow.

“Trombone,” I said. “That book in your hands. Pick that one.” So we did. And we lived happily ever after; princesses, butterflies, and humans all.

Selling Books to Children. Those Devils.

My first interaction with Scholastic books was when flyers came home in our first year of preschool. The preschool gets books for free! the Scholastic parent rep crowed. Buy books for your kid(s)!

I wasn’t sold. I buy a lot of books anyway, and also we are given a lot of books, plus we use several libraries heavily yes, we are heavy library users, and we were already giving to the school with our fees and fundraising attempts. Oh chocolate almonds, how I loathe you.

Oh, all right. I just plain resented being asked to buy books from a particular retailer. I don’t know why. The Scholastic flyer’s tendency to describe books the way Columbia House described its tapes and CDs didn’t help. New book from author of More Pies! You’ll love it!

I don’t hate the company. I think they distribute books and help organizations get more books and I love books and it’s fine. I just don’t particularly want to support them. I think it’s because I either never got Scholastic flyers when I was a kid or my mother hid/burned them. I don’t have any nostalgic connection to them at all. Whatever. Books come from all kinds of places.

Last year was our first year of elementary school, and there was a Scholastic book fair. The books come to town for TWO DAYS ONLY! and you can BUY THEM IN PERSON in the LIBRARY! It’s like the kid-equivalent of U2 coming to town. My then-kindergartener was very excited about a FAIR of BOOKS, and we went and looked at the books, all displayed beautifully in the library, and I bought him and his brother each a book because how could I not. How. Seriously. The prices are not terrible and they’re right there, in person, in the library.

A year passed.

I had actually forgotten all about the book fair; if it wasn’t for my internet friends who live in cities further East than me talking about volunteering for and running the Scholastic book fair I would have totally let it pass me by — but wait, no I wouldn’t have because the book fair is a very smooth machine. I have to say, if schools ever started selling Avon or crack or things not as morally superior as books, they would be able to pay for millions in improvements and playground equipment.

I imagine the Scholastic Training for Schools goes like this:

Two weeks before book fair: Put up posters. Talk about book fair at weekly school library visit.

One week before book fair: Send home catalogue (flyer!) of books available at book fair. Remind children of book fair. Send home notice to parents telling them about book fair. Send email to parents reminding them to check the backpack for the notice telling them about the book fair.

Two days before book fair: Reminder notice about book fair. (I am imagining) Announcements over the PA system on the hour talking up the book fair.

Day before book fair: Take children to library for regular weekly visit. Do not allow them to take out books because all the books are blocked off by the book fair display. Do allow them to make a “wish list” on a piece of paper and tell them to show their parents later. Mention in passing that certain books are “already sold out!” – this creates more demand.

Day of book fair: Kids line up outside the library to get in and freak out about books. I have been told.

I know. On the surface, there is nothing wrong with it. Books! Kids + books! It’s not a NINTENDO fair. It’s not a sloppy pants and ugly tuques fair. What is my problem.

But when I mentioned to another parent the so-very-businesslike propaganda of the book fair, she nodded (her child is in 2nd grade) and said, yes, it’s weird. The “write stuff on your wish list and take it to your parents” thing is weird. Very smart. But weird. So it’s not just me.

(I remember reading four hundred blog posts by smart parents about Scholastic when my kids were babies. I don’t remember what they said. They probably said something like this post but smarter.)

My kid is so excited about the book fair that he can’t even talk properly. He’s counting down to book fair day. (It’s tomorrow. FYI.) He’s vibrating. All this, of course, depends on me agreeing to buy him a book.

We bargained down to one book. Originally he wanted five.

That’s the part I don’t like. I don’t like being manipulated. Who doesn’t buy their kid a book! “Don’t you LIKE books, Mommy?” *tears*

I resent the implication that this is my Big Opportunity to buy books. And what about those families with less money, who really can’t participate. How do those kids feel. How do their parents feel? Annoyed, probably.

But I can’t muster a really good froth of rage about this. I like books too much. I’m stuck at sort-of-annoyed. However, I will be reminding my kids to save their allowance for next year’s fair.


Just a few shots from our summer vacation. I miss it.

My Parenting Career as a Track and Field Meet

The first three months were the marathon. People threw water and food at me and I tried to consume it while still moving and not throwing up. I didn’t sleep, or I slept the sleep of the perpetually interrupted; one hand on the diapers, the other draped artfully over my giant boobs.

The first baby’s first year was a series of 5K runs; seemingly endless but at the end of the year, as I got more proficient, they seemed suddenly so short. The more I did, the better I got. By the end of the year, I was even smiling as I ran.

Toddler life was the shotput. Haul off and try this technique. That one doesn’t work. Does this one work?

Toddler life plus pregnancy was whatever event I come in tenth at.

New baby plus toddler = triathalon. All the marathoning, plus I’m on a bike now? And also swimming? I’m changing my clothes a lot. Also I was wet and sweating and exhausted all the time, and changing my mind every three kilometres/minutes about whether it was the best or worst idea to have children.

Then I was doing those 5K runs again, but with a 9 month old bouncing against my chest. There was also some javelin tossing to get my preschooler to come back from the side of the road because I couldn’t be there to grab him because the baby was eating dog poop off the grass. No, not really.

Since both children became verbal and not-idiotic w/r/t eating poop off the grass, I stopped doing as much running after/for them so I thought the track meet was over but actually I am still tired a lot of the time and I realized two things: 1. mental exhaustion can be just as bad as physical. That’s the kind that comes from talking all day and explaining things and trying to disallow behavior while still allowing feelings except you might also have some feelings NOT THAT ANYONE CARES and also the thing with two children at different ages is if a 4.5 year old says “I’m going to smash your face into the cement,” you DON’T react because he’s just pretending to be a tough guy, but if the 6 year old says it you have to pay attention and take his brother’s face out of his hands. Re: the cement, not OK.

So 2. school aged children are the hurdles event. You’re concentrating on getting around the track and then another hurdle appears in front of you and you have to use some crazy random thigh muscles/psychological technique to get over the stupid thing and then you hurt for a week because who uses that muscle? Nobody who isn’t twenty years old! Or, if you don’t clear the hurdle, you fall on your face and cry. Get back up. And keep running, around that dusty track, leaping when warranted, enjoying that you are in the best shape of your life.*

* Or possibly just a few years from a full physical breakdown. Ha ha ha! Probably not.


I went to the swimming pool today with Fresco (4.5) and my mother (age undisclosed). Fresco has been taking swimming lessons since the summer, when he was sort of in love with the water, but a few weeks ago his instructor dunked him in the water and now he is scared of it. Which he wasn’t, before.

Actually that’s not true. Back in July when we went to Ontario for a three week vacation, Fresco started out afraid of the water. But then it was hot. Really hot. And the lake we swam in (Lake Huron) had about a four kilometre lead-in before you got your shoulders wet. So we all just walked away from him slowly and backwards until he decided to follow us and walla! he was in the water again within three days.

I mean it was about a million degrees celsius. You’d have to be a moron not to go in the water.

(there was going to be a great photo here of me piggybacking Fresco in the lake but I realized that I am missing two weeks of photos. Oh.)

We did a set of lessons in August. Then I signed both boys up for the next set of lessons at the same time so I could relax for 25 minutes (haaa!). All was going well, then came the dunking. Then, “Is it Friday?” “Yes! Hooray for –” “No, I hate Friday. Friday is swimmmmmiinngg waaaaaaah wahhhhhhhh.” Good job, me, for scheduling the swimming lessons at FIVE PM so I could listen to the complaining all day leading up to five o clock.

Five o’clock Friday afternoon: You thought it was Happy Hour. You thought wrong.

When we get there, he is fine. Except if his teacher asks if he would like to go underwater. Then he is not-fine. Last week his teacher came over to me and told me she wouldn’t be able to pass him if he didn’t put his whole head in the water. “Oh no!” I didn’t say. “A child repeating a swimming lesson level? Shocking!”

I am pretty sure no child passes any level the first time because otherwise how would they pay your wages, eh Missy? I also didn’t say.

I have learned a few things in my first six years as a parent. One is: it’s okay if you fail a swimming level. I mostly already knew that, having failed a few swimming levels in my own day, because I didn’t want to put my face in the water ahem. I can swim though! And now I can put my face in the water..with goggles..if I’m plugging my nose.

And don’t go thinking that Fresco won’t do it because he’s never seen anyone do it because SA dives like a goddamn dolphin.

I also failed skating because I refused to learn the proper stopping technique. (That’s what the boards are for! Fail.)

Two is: you can match wills with Fresco if you want to? But I don’t recommend it.

I’m pretty sure, also, that if someone three times my size held me under the armpits and then put me underwater, I would not want to go back to class either. After I saw her do that, I told him to tell his teacher he didn’t want to go underwater until he was ready. And I will be filling out or possibly creating a comment card for this teacher. On the other hand, I don’t want to just quit lessons — Trombone is doing well and also, we don’t quit. It’s OK if you don’t pass, but we’re not quitting.

So we went to the swimming pool today to frolic and enjoy ourselves and take away the horrible pressure of LESSONS. It was very good times. The pool is a new one, in a nearby city, and it’s warm like a bathtub with many water features like a ‘lazy river’ whose current actually moves you around. Whee!

Afterward, in the change room, Fresco told me that I was Black Panther because I was putting on black underwear and that I had extra powers because of my black…breast things. (he meant bra) So there. I am Black Panther. I have no pictures of that either. Hm. Oh well.

Fresco face on a boat we rode in Ontario this summer.

Seventeen Truths

Almost nothing makes me madder than being mad and having no one notice how mad I am.

I also get really mad when people treat other people like garbage.

I hate cleaning out empty yogurt containers.

Sinks full of dirty dishes can never touch my bare hands.

But I will pick up cat poop from the floor using only a tissue.

I can’t burp. So when I get gassy in the upper register, I gurgle a lot and then get uncomfortable.

This is why I am picky about what beer I drink: if it’s mostly carbonation, I can only have one. Sometimes half of one.

This is also why I drink approximately one soda pop per year.

My mouth is crooked.

Once I heard a song on the dance radio station that I just loved. I am ashamed to admit it was by some ugly dude named Pitbull whose video displayed more tits than a field full of milking cows and now I can’t love that song anymore.

I have almost no knowledge of grammar rules. I really think I was away from my desk that day in grade seven.

Sometimes I get this panicked feeling that I have been spelling everything wrong forever and no one has told me.

I like the look of boy short style underwear, but all that fabric bunching up in my business! I would rather wear bikini briefs.

I enjoy creating analogies about the creative process more than I enjoy engaging in the creative process, unless one counts creating analogies as part of the creative process.

Sometimes I forget how tall I am.

With a couple of notable exceptions, I just really don’t like most small dogs. Their constant excitement makes me nervous.

I love Cher, mostly because she’s an alto so I can sing along.

Take a Deep Breath

So the asthma specialist/pediatrician says to me,

“Oh, and by the way, you need the right size mask for a bigger child. You can’t keep using an infant mask. You should be able to pick up a replacement mask quite easily.”

The mask in question is a small, silicon, donut-style thingee that attachs to the end of a “spacer,” which is a device that you stick an inhaler full of medicine into. The spacer is supposed to help you take in a more even dose of medicine from the inhaler? I guess? I got the one we are currently using two years ago when we visited the hospital emergency room when Fresco had his first breathing incident, so it makes sense that the mask is the wrong size (it also says in plain type “infant” on it, not that I ever noticed)

I asked at one drugstore, who had no replacement masks but they offered to sell me a whole new assembly, mask and spacer, for $50. Then another drugstore.(same deal, but $60) Then a third drugstore.($48) Then I looked around the Internet. I called a medical supply store that didn’t carry masks OR spacers. Then I saw the company name on the spacer and emailed that company directly, and they forwarded my email to a local distributer, who called me on the telephone to tell me that they don’t stock the masks, just the spacers, but she would send my email BACK to the medical supply company so they could quote me a price on just one (1) mask instead of the usual minimum order and if that company said it was a lot of money, she herself would ask her boss if they could buy a case of masks and just sell me one.

Say it with me: Awwwwwwwww. I know which medical supply distribution company *I’M* going to call when I need ostomy supplies, stair lifts, etc. someday. If I remember.

#1 The little mask is basically a balloon of silicone. It’s a miracle it hasn’t been popped or burned or stuck up someone’s butt or otherwise destroyed in the past two years. Why doesn’t anybody sell replacement masks?
#2 Do you think I should go back to the emergency room with a fake asthma attack just to get the bigger mask? (I AM JOKING)

But despite all of this rooting around and phone calls and dead ends, I can’t be too cranky about it because you know what happens if you visit enough medical supply websites? You start to feel really damn healthy and lucky.

Postscript: I got an email back this afternoon from the company that makes the masks. Cost of mask: $4.99. Surcharge for only ordering one: $25. Anyone want to go in on $100 worth of medical supplies with me so I can save the surcharge? I think they have motorized scooters. Hey, and I saw a poster today at the Uptown Safeway, listing a motor scooter for sale ($125) and it said “Perfect Christmas Gift!” Hilarious or depressing. I think both.


(I wrote this back in September.)

Tonight Saint Aardvark went off to his beer club meeting (no, really, it’s a club, not just a bunch of people drinking beer) and I did the long shift with the children: 7 am – 7:30 pm. When I do the long shift, I reward myself. I cook food for the kids that they will like and food for me that I will like. Tonight, for myself, I made a frozen macaroni and cheese (1 kg!) in the oven and added extra garlic and red peppers and some slices of salami all crisp and salty on top. After I tucked the kids into their beds, I came downstairs and doused a bowl of macaroni and cheese with Sriracha sauce and sat down on the couch, remote controls in hand and ready for some trashy TV.

Of course we don’t have cable TV any more so I was going to watch Pan Am or Damages on Netflix. Those are the shows I am watching on Netflix lately.

Except Netflix didn’t work. I restarted the Boxee Box and it still didn’t work. You will trust me that these things are supposed to work, right? If you are reading this from the future or from a place where a Boxee Box is a container of delicious food that you get from the deli? In this case, that is not what a Boxee box is. A BB is supposed to make Netflix happen on my television while I sit on my ass and eat mushy things and get old.

Netflix didn’t work. My macaroni and cheese bowl was getting cold so I came over to my computer and tried to read some things. I don’t like to just eat, you see. I know I should just eat. I have read all the things — some of them I have read while eating, some not — that say you should appreciate your food and be in touch with the flavours and feel the feelings but I say this is frozen macaroni and cheese and I just want to shovel it in my mouth and do something else until my stomach is full. Heck you don’t even have to chew it. It’s practically pre-chewed.

Now that sounds disgusting, but it’s comfort food. You understand.

I read a couple of articles, quick ones, and followed a link to a third and when I did, the computer seized up and did that thing where it feels like it’s half-closed its eyelids and is having a spell and will soon be in need of smelling salts. The screen went grey and hung there, while I read the same paragraph several times and shovelled several mouthfuls of rapidly colder macaroni and cheese into my mouth.

“OK,” I said. “OK. I guess I should just restart.”

I did. I restarted and it took two tries and I got mad and cursed at god and everyone and then finally looked over at my bookshelf and grabbed a book. It’s called Prisoner of Tehran: A Memoir and it is about a woman who was taken prisoner in Iran when she was sixteen years old. It’s an excellent book, very gripping.

That’s when I heard the noise. It was a low buzz, like a dragonfly. I know about dragonflies because in the summer I was in Ontario and I thought the noise I was hearing was a giant mosquito — don’t laugh, it could have been — and it was instead a dragonfly all low and hologram-blue vibrations over the lake. Tonight when I heard the noise my first thought was “Dragonfly?” My second was, “This computer is dying now.” My third was, “A noisy car outside.” Then, out of the corner of my right eye I saw a small item flying through my living room, landing on the thin shelf attached by bracket to my wall.

I looked down at the cat, whose head was cocked and eyes were wide.

I looked back at the shelf, where a large insect now rested.

Was it a wasp? A bee? Where had it come from? The nights are cool, we keep the windows shut and the one window that’s open has a screen. Because I don’t like bugs in my house.

I got up from the table and slowly walked towards the bug. It was a beetle. It looked like a larger version of the beetles that used to come in our house at the end of summer, a couple of years ago. Large, beetle, that flies. A shiver ran down my spine and I came back to my table and tweeted about it.

I was hoping for commiseration but no one was paying any attention to me on twitter that night.

After some hemming and a great deal of hawing, I decided to stare at the bug and maybe take its picture. I tried to zoom in from a few feet away but the photo was boring and did not capture the full excitement of the bug’s size and peculiar attributes, namely being in my living room, having appeared from nowhere.

Or was it nowhere, I thought, looking behind me at the open clamshell container of organic grapes on my kitchen counter. Could a live bug have been resting in a container of organic grapes and just woken up and taken a buzz around my living room? Was it a tropical bug? Was it going to BITE me?

The shivers down my spine turned into ripples. Something would have to be done. Luckily the bug did not keep me waiting but took a short, exploratory flight to a flat surface, the wall. I went quickly to the plastic container cupboard and took out a sandwich container, then clapped it over the bug before I could lose my nerve. It dropped to the bottom of the container with a sickening crackling noise and I nearly dropped the container but did not.

I slid a canvas of my child’s artwork against the container to trap the bug (many sheets of paper within my grasp having been discarded for this purpose for being too small, too thin, too likely to wobble and let the bug free again) and brought him over to the table so I could update twitter.

The bug stayed still. I was not without empathy, after all if he *was* a bug from a tropical grape forest, who knows how long he had been in that clamshell full of grapes. Who knew how cold he was, or whether he could even see anything. My empathy stopped short, as he was still a creepy looking beetle. I am not a bug-phobe, obviously or I would have run outside and waited for Saint Aardvark to get home, but I do not much care for things with more than two legs. Especially if they are strange to me, and can fly, and also look like beetles.

Which really makes no sense; after all, a spider would be likely to bite, and a wasp would sting. A beetle just crackles along and sounds like it’s wearing tiny high heels and maybe it’s the resemblance to cockroaches. Maybe. I used to live in a cockroach infested apartment and I am not fond of beetles.

Anyway, I eventually garnered the courage to take the bug outside, where I placed the canvas on the stoop across the sidewalk from my patio and then removed the plastic container, as though I was a fancy waiter revealing a mouth-watering dish to a hotel guest ordering room service. The bug didn’t move. It was a great deal colder outside than inside, and that much colder than where those grapes had come from.

The bug just sat there, under the light. I knocked the canvas with the plastic container and he slid off, into the dirt.

Back inside, I drank a bit of rum. And then picked up Prisoner of Tehran again and went to bed.

Part Two: Less Complaining, More Getting On With It

After I wrote yesterday’s post I wanted to punch myself in the teeth. There is nothing more irritating than a person who whines about writing and time management. Unless it’s a person who does that, like clockwork, three times a year. So, this post is both a part two and not. Same sort of topic, but no grand epiphanies about time wastage because guess what: I already knew I waste time every day.

This morning, Trombone (age 6) and I had an argument.

In the morning, after breakfast, the children are allowed to watch some TV before it’s time to go to school. Usually this ends up being about half an hour of TV, sometimes more if they get up earlier. We used to do it this way: we would eat, they would watch TV while I showered & got dressed, then they would get dressed and then we would leave for school. Except it started to be this way: they would watch TV while I showered and got dressed, then they would ignore me and dawdle and not get dressed and we would be late.

Also there would be much sterness of tone and sometimes shouting. All of which would lead to me getting him to the school door, saying goodbye and instantly regretting the entire morning because what if there was an earthquake? What if the school burned down? What if the last thing he remembered of me was my horrible witch face hollering, “GET YOUR BOOOOOTS ON FOR THE LOVE OF SAM.” That would be unfortunate.

I had a brilliant idea. I would ask the children to get dressed after breakfast but before the TV time! This way, they would have an incentive to get dressed more quickly AND when the TV went off we would all be ready to go. How brilliant am I, I asked myself, and myself answered, very brilliant!, and so I explained the plan to Trombone and Fresco. At first they were reluctant, then they did it for a few days, and it worked brilliantly.

One day last week, when Trombone reached for the remote control right after breakfast, and I reminded him that he would need to get dressed first, he turned on me. He started sighing and moaning about how unfair it was and how he liked the old way better and WHY did we have to do it this way, WHY? No really, WHY? WHY? WHY?

I explained why. But he didn’t really want to know. He just wanted to complain. I told him I understood why he was complaining but I thought the new way was working. He said it wasn’t working, that he hated it, that it was the worst way ever.

Meanwhile, Fresco arrived back downstairs, out of breath, completely dressed and ready to watch TV, in the unassuming yet totally calculated way only a younger brother can pull off.

“I like this way,” he said brightly.
Trombone shot him the stink eye and stomped upstairs to get dressed.

This morning Trombone started the argument again but since I knew how it was going to end I didn’t participate. I left the remote on the table and told them they could watch TV when they were dressed and then went upstairs to write in my morning journal. For ten minutes, Trombone ranted and raved at his brother, the walls, God, and everyone about how unfair how mean, how it was the worst idea ever and someday SHE will KNOW how bad an idea it is, really. Really! Ten minutes. And I was sitting upstairs, half listening to this, thinking: if you had put your pants on five minutes ago you’d be well involved in a Power Rangers episode right now. Dude. Why are you wasting your energy fighting when you could be watching TV?

Aha! I thought. Wait!

If I didn’t waste my energy fighting myself (and blogging about it,) I could be writing. And if I spend my time writing, I will have written stuff to show for it.

So I am going to try getting out of my own way. Don’t fight it. Just do it. Because if there’s an earthquake today, do I want my last image of myself to be me going, “Whyyyyyy do I never have any tiiiiiime?” in my horrid whiny voice? No I do not!

(These children can hang upside down from rings because they didn’t give up after the first try.)

The Contents of My Head: Now Chewable and Strawberry Flavoured

When I first considered a return to blogging I talked myself out of it. After all, I stopped blogging in February because I wanted to, in politician’s parlance, “spend more time with my family” ie: I wanted to focus on what kind of writing was more important to me (not actually spend more time with my family at all) and that kind of writing was the kind that was long form, fiction or non, published, paid? maybe? and you know. Serious. Serious writing. About serious things.

Yeah. Well.

One thing I do well, when I am not blogging, is write serious things. Not serious in the “be taken seriously” way but in the “wait, I thought she had a sense of humour?” way. When I take myself seriously I take myself too seriously.

Serious serious serious. Is there a word for where you say a word too much and it loses its shape like it’s butter melting on the sidewalk in the hot sun? Yes, for verbal use anyway, the term is Semantic Satiation which is a pretty wicked term. Also, I got that by google searching for “when you use a word so many times it loses its meaning” and that was the FIRST result. I love living in the Future.

Aside from writing things that didn’t so much zing as plop, I was not getting very much work done. I wanted to dedicate my previous blogging time to fiction writing and editing time and for some reason after the first couple of months, that time just got surplussed and given to other things. Twitter, mostly. Reading articles online. Other stuff.

I realized recently that the reason I don’t want to write my “serious” stuff is because I believe no one will ever see it. And without the potential of an audience I am not much interested in working on it. Does this make me honest, or a hack? Idiot, also an option. Because of course no one will see it if I never work on it, duh. Before I had a blog I had an audience of 0 and I still wrote my stories and poems and waited patiently for them to mature into lovely butterflies so I could share them with the world. Then I had a blog, and my little worms were getting attention and who the hell cares about those butterflies anyway. In sum: I have been spoiled by the instant gratification of writing on the Internet. And when I took away the blog gratification, I went to the twitter gratification because why write if no one is going to see it? RIGHT? Exactly.

What I should be doing is working (the phrase “toiling in obscurity” springs to mind and refuses to be quashed) and getting things ready to show to other, real, live people and their magazines, editorial boards, publishing houses, while there still are any. But all I want to do is dash off 500 words that are half-clever and have people see them and then go to bed happy because I am A WRITER WHO WROTE STUFF.


After much soul searching and talking to myself in the rain, I convinced myself that blogging again would be a good idea because it would get me a little bit of gratification (methadone?) and that little bit would be enough to get me to sit my ass in the chair and work on the serious-but-not-too-serious-you’re-killing-us-here stuff.

Only problem is, I haven’t managed to find the time yet to blog AND write. Within the word choice lies the key: finding the time. That means it’s around here somewhere, I’ve just misplaced it, not that it doesn’t even exist. This is a positive thing. Today I kept a time log so see where my time is hiding and I will tell you tomorrow what I found out. Bwahaha, cliffhanger.