Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Streetlights Again

My child informs me - well, reminds me - that we moms on the block have been fighting for this streetlight for a LONG time. This is true.

You see, the Far West Village is an actual neighborhood kind of neighborhood, where all the moms and kids know each other (I'm still greeted on the street with "Hi, Sarah's mom!"). So when our kids got to be around eight or nine, they set up a concerted clamor to be able to walk to school ALONE...well, with each other and no parents. This one took quite some persuasion on their part, on account of getting to PS41 from far West Charles Street involves crossing Hudson Street AND Seventh Avenue - both of which are big streets. The upshot of this is that we finally allowed ourselves to be convinced, as long as all of them went together, obeyed every traffic signal, held hands across the big streets - etc., etc., etc. I have to admit that we were kind of charmed by the notion of maybe managing to have an extra cup of coffee (or for me, Diet Coke) in the morning in peace and quiet. But for the first week or so it was pretty funny, on account of we moms were terrified about the whole thing, so we all got together and crept along about a block behind the kids, trying to stay out of sight, making sure that they were crossing the street properly, and so forth. I didn't think then, and I don't think now, that we ever fooled the kids, but after a week or so of this we figured, well, hell, they seem to be okay - and we never looked back. Ah, the glory of that ten minutes of peace and quiet...

But that, of course, was the point at which we got real evangelical about stop signs and traffic lights. You can see how much good it did - now that our children are in their 20s, we have traffic lights. We're excited - those of us who aren't in nursing homes.

I am VERY annoyed at the weather. Al day today they've been predicting thunderstorms for tonight, and I have been waiting with bated breath, because I love thunderstorms and find them the best possible of all sleeping music. Now, of course, not only have they backed off on the thunderstorms, but it seems to have stopped raining - which is the second best music to sleep by, since I have a skylight in my bedroom and the sound of rain on it is immediately soporific. What the weather is going to do, of course, because it hates me, is NOT rain all night, and I will get rain on my skylight when I wake up in the morning, thereby instilling in me a great desire to stay in bed. This is not useful. We temps don't get paid if we're not there. Growl. Nobody loves me.

Ah, well. I shall now let my dead cat out of the bathroom...oh, yes. I am the proud feeder (well, where cats are concerned, you really can't say owner) of two and a half cats. Two of them (brothers, both black, Tarbaby, who's all black, and Blackfoot, who has a white spot under his chin) are youngish - 10, say - but the half cat is Gypsy, who we figure is over 20 now (all of our cats are adoptees, of course), and refuses to give up. She is what they call a Munchkin cat - tabby, with four very short little legs - she looks rather like her mother got terribly confused about a dachshund once. And she smells just disgusting and has dreadlocks because she's not limber enough to bathe herself properly any more. She has also decided that she wants nothing to do with litter boxes, which has caused me to newspaper my bathroom floors. She'll use the newspaper, but frankly, spending quite a lot of my time picking up soggy smelly newspaper is not what I actually what to do with my life (and most of her smell comes from the fact that somehow she keeps dragging her tail through her own shit - although I cleaned her off tonight and that's a LOT better now). And I would have her put down, except she eats like a pig, can still happily leap on the table to try and get at my dinner, has the voice of at least three Siamese cats (damned if I know where that came from) and purrs very loudly and happily most of the time. This cat is having one hell of a time in her twilight years - even though she's almost entirely toothless. She has precisely one fang left, but she manages to scarf up her food, my food, and even every now and then some of the young cats' dry food. (Frankly, if I get to be that old in human years and am having as much fun as Gypsy, I wouldn't want anyone to try and put me down. I personally plan to live to be about a hundred and three, and go out like a light while sitting on the lap of my 23 three old lover, with a glass of champagne in one hand and a bowl of fresh caviar in the other.)

Do not, by the way, if you like ice cream late at night, have three cats. The only way I can get my insomnia cure is to take it into the downstairs powder room and shut the door, because otherwise I have to eat it standing up with a broom in one hand as all three of these damn beasts try to get at it. Luckily I do my ice cream eating late at night (when I've determined that I really can't sleep), because it's hard to explain why one is perched on a closed toilet reading a book and eating ice cream.

I think I'm going to have one more beer and go to bed...and pray for rain.

Love, Wendy

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