Best and Worst

Best Thing of Today
4 days only till the start of school holidays, the very best thing about working at a school

Worst Thing of Today
Pain, much pain, that even the ‘good’ drugs don’t seem to be helping….going to bed, maybe tomorrow will be less painful

Funny Things Said By My Husband

Me: *something funny and silly and teasing to HL*

HL: Whore!

Me: WHAAAT?! What you call me?

HL: ummm…I called you Hu Or…it’s Chinese for ‘lovely, gentle, forgiving wife who is shining like the sun’

Me: uh huh

Best and Worst

Best Thing of Today
Seeing very long-term friends who have just moved back to town. We haven’t lived in the same town for over 10 years, so it’s an absolute joy to be able to be in their everyday lives again.

Worst Thing of Today
Hearing the unmistakable ‘blecch, blecch, hrrkk, yyrrch, hcck, bluuuhh’ that informs us that a cat has changed the location of the contents of its stomach from the inside to the outside. Hearing it twice. About 15 minutes apart (which was just long enough to re-settle into the movie we were watching). From both cats. Who chose to run in from the tiled laundry to deposit said stomach contents on the carpet and rug…

Worst and Best

Worst Thing of Today
Cleaning a disgusting, old sink to try and render it somewhat presentable before having it installed in our ‘highly-in-need-of-a-complete-renovation’ bathroom *blecch*

Best Thing of Today
Another small and easy and satisfying day that didn’t require a great deal of any angst, and provided a lot of simple enjoyment

Movie-Going Fun Times

In a supremely poor act of scheduling today, our local movie theatre did not open the doors to this afternoon’s showing of Get Smart  until 15 minutes after the listed show time, leaving a crowded foyer of formerly excited movie-going patrons to become increasingly tense and claustrophobic and irritated with staff.

The murmuring began about 5 minutes before the movie was supposed to begin, and grew into muttering and nervous giggles at 5 minutes past scheduled time, until, at 15 minutes past, when we had originally thought we would be sitting inside with our popcorn and choctops and Diet Cokes, there was a feeling of growing crowd-crushing hysteria and, somewhat edgy, supposition as to what could be holding them up.

At first people thought that the staff were simply incredibly stupid and had forgotten to open the door – there seemed to be no logic in letting hordes of people congregate outside when we could all be out of their way and comfortably seated. As time went on though, it was obvious that this could not be the case, and so we concluded that some dolt had been unable to figure out when the previous movie would end and schedule the next screening accordingly.

Finally the exit door opened, people streamed out and we were allowed to go in. Fortunately, from this time on things got (mostly) better. We were able to settle into good seats – in the middle, towards the front, with foot-rests and no-one in front of us (yay!) – and wait.

As the lights were going down a lady scrambled over and sat in the seat next to me. My tension level immediately rose a notch. Theatre showings are rarely full here, so you mostly don’t have sit next to anyone but the people you’ve gone with. Consequently, the people that one fights with for the arm-rest tend to be friends/family, so when a stranger sits next to one, one hardly knows what ‘correct procedure’ is…

Being very much a ‘movie-enjoyer’, and quite detail-oriented, and, let’s face it, pretty selfish, I like to be comfortable and have everything ‘just so’ when I sit down to watch a movie (I’m SO fun!). It’s bad enough to have to figure out which bit of the arm-rest belongs to HL and which bit is mine, so, when my other neighbour is somebody I’ve never seen before, but whom I have to sit next to for the next two hours, I find the whole social conundrum of ‘polite, polite, we’re both so polite, which bit’s yours?, sorry, I just bumped you, is my arm too close for comfort?, ‘scuse me, but your arm seems to be taking up three-quarters of the space’ a bit tricky.

We played ‘push forward to claim territory’ and ‘pull back to maintain polite social conventionalities’ for a few minutes until we both seemed to find comfortable ground and were able to settle into the movie-going experience, phew.

One of the previews at first seemed to be a joke, a spoof, but after watching for a little bit, I finally concluded that they were serious. The new attempt at producing more income from the Star Wars empire appears to be a poorly animated movie/tv series The Clone Wars. This, to me, looks like nothing more than a pathetic grab at a few more dollars from a dwindling and increasingly grumpy fan-base. *disgusted grimace*

I’m trying to withhold judgement, but it looks so bad I don’t even think I could watch it to find out. What a way to continue to spit on the already-tarnished (probably irrevocably) reputation of a beloved and originally ground-breaking phenomenon. *sigh* (Though I reserve the right to apologise and change my mind if it turns out to be better than the ad indicates it will be.)

FINALLY we got to the actual movie. I laughed very hard. It was much, much better than I thought it would be. The writing was more sophisticated than I had anticipated, and the humour was just the right amount of obvious ‘see-it-coming’ punchlines, ‘ball-crushing, smack-into-a-wall’ slapstick, genuinely humorous ‘tickle-your-funnybone’ comedy, and ‘wink-to-the-audience’ homage to the original.

Max was cleverer and much more competent than he was in the tv series, and 99 wasn’t quite as overtly adoring of him, but, on the whole, it was a very adept rendering of an updated, 21st century version of a much-loved, cliché-producing tv institution.

We left the theatre (as crowded as it was when we were waiting – knock-on effect I guess) and I felt like skipping to the car with a very light heart. aahh…happy, fun movie-goingness…it’s a ‘good thing’

Best and Worst

Best Thing of Today
The morning sun on my face as I stood in the kitchen getting ready to go to work. I closed my eyes and turned my face directly into the glow, and it was so bright and vivid that it shone through my eyelids.

Worst Thing of Today
HL  having an upset stomach and ‘sharing the love’

Worst and Best

Worst Thing of Today
Australian media arrogantly, deliberately and self-righteously making semi-informed assumptions about American culture

Best Thing of Today
Peking Duck for dinner, and watching HL almost puke when The Amazing Race contestants had to milk a camel and drink the milk *laugh*

The Night Watch

As a child we lived in a big old brick house with a verandah. My bedroom had a window which looked directly out onto the verandah, and I would sometimes lie in bed with the lights out and the curtains open, and watch the night before falling asleep. One night the outside dark was so compelling I had to sneak out the front door to sit on the verandah and watch.

The pageantry in the sky became so beautiful I wanted to seize and remember it, but, being only 12, I had no camera or video to record it. I crept inside, trying desperately not to alert my parents that I was up and about; I didn’t want to share my night, I felt it would have been ruined. I found a pen and paper and went back out to perch on the edge of the verandah.

It was too dark to actually see what I was writing, but I scrawled down what was happening in the sky as I watched. Once the night sky closed in with the rolling clouds I went back to my room and tried to decipher what I had written. This is it, and, while the writing’s obviously naïve and somewhat contrived, it evocatively transports me to that night, and I am that 12 year old again, in my nightie, sitting on the wooden boards of our verandah, with my feet on the cement path, my body huddling against the wind, and my soul trying to soak up the eternal moment before my parents discover me and damage my connection to it.

Dark clouds almost entirely cloak the endless sky. The moon’s not visible except by the glowing illumination of his clouds. He, shyly, reluctantly, makes an entrance, confidence expanding by the second. He shifts the clouds, gaily dancing as the star of his realm.

Suddenly, confidence wanes for, apparently, no reason, and he abruptly slips behind a cloud. Quickly and defiantly they seem to take over the sky, governing on their own. Swallowing the moon, they seem to dominate.

The wind acquires speed and intensity, ignoring polite conventionalities, as though in league with the evil, scheming clouds. Unrest consumes the sky kingdom, the wind at his most forceful. An unwitting victim of his own subjects, the moon king is captured.

I can still sense the gusts of wind, and see the muted glow of the king shaded by his subject captors, and feel the joy of the bond with the night spectacle.

 

Worst and Best

Worst Thing of Today
Fixing mistake after silly mistake of a co-worker

Best Thing of Today
Real, New York-style pizza (it’s not so easy to find non-soggy, non-bready, non-plasticky pizza ’round these here parts)

Funny Things Said By My Husband

Me: Shall we have cake?

HL: *nod vigorously* Oh, and make mine with double frosting.

Me: Not quite sure how I’m going to do that; the cake’s already made and there’s no extra icing.

HL: Give me the frosting off your piece.

Me: *laughing till choking*

(As an aside: the icing rose on top of the cake? Yeah…check that it’s not made of foam rubber BEFORE you bite into it.)

Suffocation

I feel smothered and I can feel the hysterical scream in my throat that I have to swallow and I have to grit my teeth so I don’t spit tension and I need space to fail out of eyesight so I can fall apart without overwhelming concern that will make me feel as though I have to scratch eyes out so they don’t look with pity and I need silence so I can drown the chaotic noise that makes my eyes dull and distance to regain equilibrium and wisdom to dominate so I can think and restore perspective and closeness to stop the feeling of disconnection and I feel a tight chest and a resentful heart and a cynical and mistrustful head that are drained: of humour; of good judgment; of confidence; of hopefulness…

Maybe I’m just overtired

Best and Worst

Best Thing of Today
Errmm…I’m having the opposite problem today…today was ok, but was mostly made up of nothing very great and lots of not great, so let’s say that the best thing was right now, venting a bit. Oh, and I’m reading this book, which is very helpful.

Worst Thing of Today
Feeling angry and resentful and cold of heart and ineffectual

Best and Worst

Best Thing of Today
Birthday fun with HL

Worst Thing of Today
Errmmm…today was pretty good…so…I’m really searchin’ here…having to actually go and pick up the Thai food for dinner rather than having it delivered…that’s the best worst I can do today

Worst and Best

Worst Thing of Today
Shouting at and feeling impatient with HL because my life felt chaotic

Best Thing of Today
HL, standing at the sink, enswirled in wreaths of steam from the coffee pot, and bathed in light from the sun pouring in through the window

‘Go, Speed Racer, Go’

Me, affectionately, to HL, as the first flash of Speed Racer begins: Are you 6 again?

HL: *nodding head with a big boyish grin*

Best and Worst

Best Thing of Today
Spending much fun time with HL on a rare shared day off

Worst Thing of Today
My Gloria Jean’s Tiramisu Latté did not taste AT ALL like tiramisu, just only latté (ok, I guess my day was pretty good *smile*)

Grand-orphans

When HL and I first met we had 5 grandparents between us. He had a Grandma and Grandpa, and I had a Granny and Poppy and a Meerischen.

My Pop died of lung cancer just before I moved to America, Grandma died of lung cancer about 5 years later, Meerischen of heart issues shortly after, Grandpa of complications after a fall a couple of years ago and Granny a few months ago, when her body just got too old. HL and I have talked about how ‘orphan’ is the term for a person who has no parents left, but what is the term for those who have no grandparents? HL has suggested Grand-orphan.

Sometimes it will strike me out of nowhere that neither HL or I have any grandparents left alive and I will be reminded that we have been together since before all of those deaths. We were having lunch today and I said to HL “We have no grandparents left. They all died.”

I don’t know why I feel the need to point out when people are dead. I do it a lot. Almost any time we talk about someone who used to be alive and now is not, I am compelled to say “They’re dead now.” I think maybe it’s something to do with needing to be reminded that all is ephemeral, even people and things that seem to be steadfast.

We live on the edge of death, with it ineveitably looming, sometimes near, sometimes far, but always looming. I’m not afraid of death, as such. In fact, I’m not afraid of dying at all. I am afraid of grief. Especially sudden grief. Especially waking up the morning after, and the ‘thwack’ of sudden grief memory.

Death feels like a mistake. Like it can’t possibly be the case. Like there was life and then…not. Like this wasn’t the original plan. Some deaths feel better than others. Grandparent deaths at least often feel as though the timing was right, they were tired, sick, ready. But parent deaths and spouse deaths and children deaths… I s’pose as HL and I get older these some of these will seem more natural, but death will always feel, to me, like a mistake has been made.

Funny Things Said By My Husband

HL, when Kitten took a flying leap from one end of the couch onto his stomach: Good thing I’ve got abs of steel…ok…abs of aluminum…

Worst and Best

Worst Thing of Today
Getting up…the rest of today was ok

Best Thing of Today
Unexpectedly getting to celebrate a friend’s 21st

Worst and Best

Worst Thing of Today
Bloody Prime TV having no digital signal for one of the best viewing nights of the week (My Name is Earl, How I Met Your Mother, The Amazing Race)

Best Thing of Today
Feeling proud of my dad

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