Saturday, March 27, 2010

Happy Birthday

Dear Owen,

Happy Birthday! This is sure to be the first in a long line of late birthday cards you’ll be receiving from me. This time, I blame it on your mother. It took her several days to get me a decent picture of you. Also, there was that brief period—2 or 3 days in the beginning there—when I didn’t actually know your full name. (The out-of-towners are always the last to hear the details.) As it turns out, you’re named after almost all of your male relatives. In fact, if I posted your middle names here, this would no longer be an anonymous blog. Here, we will just call you Owen.

I do love that you carry your grandpas' names, though. I very much look forward to watching the amazing men in your life—your grandpas, your dad, your uncle—teach you to be a scholar and a gentleman. You will learn to be compassionate, insightful, funny, and kind. You will hold open doors for people. You’ll carry groceries for old ladies. You'll be a very hard worker, an extremely loyal friend. You will have a great sense of humor, especially about yourself.

You’ll also get into a fair bit of trouble. But, when your dad calls your grandpa to say, “You will not believe what this kid did…” your grandpa will remind your father of the time he accidentally laundered pot it in his jeans. Even the scholar and gentleman sometimes gets caught with stems and seeds in the dryer vent.

Your sister Lucy could not be more excited about your arrival. She alternates between kissing you and sticking her finger in your eyes. You are covered in spit and have corneal abrasions, but you are well loved. Lucy and Logyn have great plans for you. Mostly, they plan to boss you around and take your stuff. Don’t look to your cousin, Eli, for any help here. He weighs more than the two of them combined, and yet they’ve somehow managed to purloin everything the kid once owned. Turkey sized and most dangerous when they work in tandem, those two are the toddler equivalent of Velociraptors (from the Latin for swift seizer).

Speaking of spit and eye injury, I can’t wait to see you in May. When I tell you, “Owen, I’m going to give you a thousand kisses,” I mean it. I’m also going to blind you with my camera. I apologize in advance. I can’t help myself. Take a hint from Logyn who now closes her eyes when she sees me coming.

It appears as though you may have that part down pat…

Aunt TT

Monday, March 15, 2010

All in the first day's work

I talked to Graci tonight. She just started a forensic pathology rotation in The Bronx. She's been there one day and already she says things like, "Yeah, we had a decomp today. Big old green, bloated thing. Been dead about two weeks. We're not sure what got him. Coulda been anything really."

Then, she takes a puff off her cigar, blows smoke from the corner of her mouth, sips her scotch, and buys the pretty lady at the end of the bar a drink.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Spring forward

Blake was on call last night. Evan and I had a Blake's on call date. On these nights, we make French food. More specifically, Evan makes French food. I follow very simple instructions. "Cut this into pieces just like these," he will say, holding up an example. When things get complicated, I grab my wine glass and the dog and head to the living room to flip through Vogue. Their apartment's open floor plan allows us to chat away while he cooks and I, well...drink. When dinner's ready, we eat and then take some to the hospital for Blake. Yesterday was a wet, chilly day. It made for a great French onion soup night.

French onion soup and red wine and vodka tonics and dirty martinis... I suppose it's no surprise that on call nights, Evan and I tell each other things we, perhaps, otherwise wouldn't.

After dinner, we went to the piano. It's been months since we've done Broadway. I'm sure the neighbors missed it almost as much as we did.

Blake got home around 9 this morning. 9 this morning was actually 8 this morning, which almost completely explains the fact that we all slept until 11 this morning (which was really only 10), had some leftover chocolate cake and some breakfast quiche, watched Blake accidentally solve a Rubik's cube, and went back to bed until 4 (which, again, was really only 3). The point is, saving daylight is exhausting.

When I rolled back out of bed this afternoon, Evan asked, "You ready to go home?"

"Yeah," I said. I wasn't so sure that wasn't a little bit of a lie. There are times I really need to get home, back to my quiet apartment to curl up on my couch with my favorite mug and my softest throw. I require a certain not so small amount of time alone. But, there are also times when I could quite easily overstay my welcome at the boys' place. It is very easy--a bit too easy--to feel right at home there. Resisting the urge to feed the clingy monster that occasionally lives in me, I try to leave before they are really sure they're ready for me to go. In that spirit, I said, "Yeah," when I probably really meant, "Nah."

There's a big old harbor in the middle of this town. When traffic clogs a few main roads, it can be a total pain in the ass to get from my place to the boys' without swimming. Evan picked me up yesterday because he was teaching at a math convention in my neck of the woods. As such, he had to take me home today. We made it as far as the harbor where we ran into a veritable parking lot. A St. Patrick's Day parade, Alice in Wonderland in 3D at the IMAX, a dental convention of some sort--it was the perfect storm of traffic, a real fuckery of ground transportation.

If I had been alone, I would have crept my way home. Because I was with Evan, though, and I really didn't want him to have to spend the next two hours in the car, I suggested we just turn around. "Listen," I said, "it's not like I was going home to split the atom. Let's just go back to your place and we can try this again in a few hours."

I felt bad. I didn't want to go home, but I didn't want to stay, either. Blake and Evan hadn't seen much of each other this weekend. When Blake got up from his post call nap, I thought it might be nice if he had his boyfriend to himself.

I have to say, though, that traffic was just one in a series of great things to happen to my weekend...right behind onion soup, vodka tonics, and breakfast quiche.

Blake got up shortly after we got back home. (You see how I call it that? Oy vey.) If he was disappointed to see me, he hid it well. (He's a good friend. He would hide it well.) Evan suggested a movie. Blake put in Licence to Kill.

I'm a Bond fan. Blake is a Bond connoisseur. He owns and knows them all. Watching them with him is great fun. Licence to Kill was no exception.

After the movie, I made the only thing I ever make for the boys--fettuccine Alfredo. Impossible to ruin, it's my kind of dish. Dinner was excellent for two reasons: First, it's two main ingredients were cheese and heavy cream. Second, cooking something made me feel a little less guilty about the day I'd spent squatting on their couch. In short, cheese and heavy cream make me feel better about myself in more ways than one.

French food, vodka tonics, shared secrets, off key show tunes, and friends like these two make me feel better about the rest.

Prepare to be underwhelmed

I used to leave little notes to myself here about my day. I thought of this as a place to jot down a few lines about the things I didn't want to forget. I've realized that lately the very best things are being left out...and forgotten.

I apologize in advance for what I hope will be a deluge of uninteresting posts. It's not that I hope they'll be uninteresting, it's just that I hope to get back to writing about the best parts of my day, even when I don't have anything clever to say.

A woman wrote a book called, No One Cares What You Had for Lunch: 100 Ideas for Your Blog. I'm sure her blog is endlessly clever. I highly recommend it (if endlessly clever is the kind of thing that interests you). If, however, you're intrigued by the hopelessly mundane, stick around. I'm your girl. I had French onion soup for lunch.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Today I met the boys I'm going to marry

Setting the scene...

Dinner in a crowded restaurant. On one side of a booth, it was Blake, Evan, and Terroni. The three of us easily fit as we are all about as big around as the average pepper mill. On the other side, it was Dawson and Joey. (Yes, as in that Dawson and Joey.)

Joey said to Blake, "Hey, remember that deal we had where you guys will get married when Dawson and I have a baby?"

"Uhh...yes," he said, more like a question than a statement. He raised his eyebrows, turns his head to the right a bit, parted his lips and sucked in his stomach. I realize that sounds like he was posing for a photo op, but the effect is actually a bit different. When he does this, he looks like a man who is about to witness a head on collision--something he is powerless to stop and will not particularly enjoy but somehow cannot tear himself away from.

"Well," said Joey, "Dawson and I are thinking about having a baby sometime in the next year."

Then, it was as if Blake was part of a head on collision with a heart attack. Eyes wide in abject terror, he clutched his left chest, made a little choking sound, quit breathing, turned blue, saw his dead grandmother who called to him to walk towards the light, and for a moment...he actually died.

Resuscitation commenced.

For awhile there, it wasn't looking so good. I delivered chest compressions while Dawson gave rescue breaths. There were no signs of life. Things turned around quickly, though, when I took over the rescue breathing. The moment I put my lips on his and exhaled hot, garlicky breath into his mouth, Blake sat bolt upright, tousled his bangs a bit (the effortless hair look is never truly effortless), and yelled, "Alright, alright. I'll do it. I'll get married."

I'd like to think it was the very essence of life flowing from within me during that single breath that revived him. I suspect, however, that in that moment, something else might have shaken him from the grip of death.

The next day, during brunch, I listened to Blake and Evan discuss wedding plans with Dawson and Joey. I had only one request: that I not really be involved. "I'll sit and watch with Dawson and Joey's baby in my lap. You know how much I love babies, and sitting, and sitting with babies. I'm looking forward to it." It was then that the rest of the table decided I would be geting ordained online and officiating the ceremony. "It's like sitting and watching," they said, "except not really at all."

I was initially reluctant to play this new role but have since warmed to the idea. I think we'll be kicking things off with a story of the near death and subsequent brilliant resuscitation that started it all. It's a rather charming little how we got to where we are today, don't you think?

The best part is it's all true.
Every word of it.