Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

What Price, Freedom?

Friday afternoon, I took the boys to stay with my in-laws in Deliverance land.

I am not speaking metaphorically or analogously or ironically. I mean that they literally live in the county where Deliverance was filmed. And frankly, in many ways, the area is not very different from how it was portrayed in the movie. That used to scare me. Now, after 14 years, I am mostly just mildly disconcerted.

But it meant an evening out for Husband and me. As the saying goes..."Rednecks by marriage can't be choosers", so I tried not to think about Ned Beatty in his underdrawers squealing like a pig while fellating the local color.

After I delivered the boys to their grandparents, I came home and took a ridiculously long bath. Nobody pounded on the door to inform me that a cat or a sibling had vomited something of questionable color and content. I did not have to get out even one time because somebody had spilled something, broken something, or severed something.

I reveled in the sheer hedonistic joy of shaving everything at the same time. I plucked my eyebrows, which were looking very Kahlo-esque due to neglect. I applied a green clay mask and let it sit until it was completely dry. Nobody made any cracks about the undead. I pumiced my feet and I deep conditioned my hair. I embraced my inner product whore.

Then husband came home and we engaged in some afternoon delight. Afternoon. As in...still light outside. This is only notable in that we were both awake, sober, the same time. Daylight strongly maximizes the odds of such, but circumtances allow marital relations to commence prior to nightfall lamentably seldom.

Before the kids could tell time it was pretty easy to engineer. Now they're on to us.

We dined at a local steak house, to which Husband's Little League team had given us an extremely generous gift certificate. We blew half of it on a decadent bottle of LaCrema Pinot Noir. The markup was ridiculous, but it was worth it. That was some damn good Pinot.

Fortunately or unfortunately, depending upon perspective, Husband's newfound wine snobbery has necessitated that we bid a fond farewell to Ernest and Julio and their economically friendly apellations. Ditto for Boone's Farm and Franzia.

Even so, anything over about $20 strikes me as terribly pretentious. But I've discovered that when it comes to wine, pretention is often exceeded by gratification. In other words cheap wine sucks and good wine is worth the embarassment of forking over a ridiculous sum of money for grape excreta.

Anyway, our dinner was terribly adult and relaxing. Nobody spilled anything. Nobody dined with their napking tucked into their collar. There were no crayons involved. Nobody made light sabre sound effects while wielding a sesame encrusted breadstick. There were no bodily noises followed by smothered giggles. We did not have to apologize for any foodstuffs inadvertanly flung into the next booth.

We ordered appetizers (bruschetta with avocodo and crabmeat) AND dessert (pineapple chiffon cheesecake served on top of some crispy, caramel-y, wafer-y thing and blood orange sorbet). We lingered. We talked. We cut only our own food. One bite at a time. Our server was attentive without being intrusive, the ambiance was a little contrived (faux cowhide upholstery and faux timbered ceilings) but surprisingly pleasant all the same.

We were revitalized by the sheer lack of responsibility.

We debated what to do with the rest of our evening. It seemed almost sinful to return home on such a carefree and unfettered occasion. But Husband had risen at his cutomary 5:30 am, and I had risen early as well, to do laundry and tidy the house so I could enjoy the boys' absence without the taint of domestic guilt. We decided that we had nothing to prove, and headed home to enjoy a movie, which, it is worth mentioning, we watched from beginning to end without pausing a single time.

In the morning, we slept ridiculously late and husband prepared cheese omelettes, biscuits, and leftover steak thinly sliced and carefully warmed to retain the succulent pink center. We sipped coffee that was still piping hot and talked about when we should go rescue retrieve our offspring.

We had scarcely articulated the thought when the phone rang. It was Pre-Pubescent One inquiring, casually, but with an undertone of quiet desperation, when, exactly we would be coming to get them. You see, the in-laws have no computer and no video games. They live on a picturesque but lonely rural hill, with no other children for miles around, save a girl cousin, who, with the passing years was becoming more and more like a real girl and less and less like the annoying younger cousin she had always been.

And so, our lovely evening faded into memory. But not before we found ourselves rocketing down the highway with the sunroof open and the belovedly familiar strains of Southern rock blasting from the factory spec speakers. It was our last gasp of freedom and we pulled it into our bodies with the same of kind of ferocity with which a drowning man draws his last breath. We held it until we were dizzy with the richness of it. And then we pulled into the long winding drive and felt the familiar skin of parenthood binding our bones once more.

Our boys erupted from the house and we both smiled. We had not missed them until that very moment. But seeing their faces reminded us that they are precious in a way we sometimes disremeber amid the chaos, work and worry of our lives.

Still....I'd wouldn't mind missing them a little more often. But $12/hr. to babysit boys who can bathe themselves, feed themselves, wipe their own bottoms and put themselves to bed is a pretty steep price to pay. What I really need is an on-call crisis management consultant. Someone who, would, the event of a fire, summon help instead of trying to save the Playstation.

It has been said that one cannot put a price on freedom, but from my perspective, it costs just about as much as one is prepared to pay a teenaged girl to sleep on one's couch.


FOOTNOTE: I changed my domain name to a while back. It never occurred to me to mention it because the old url would simply redirect. But then I realized that I had not seen any bloglines referrals on my statcounter in quite some time and realized that my olds feeds were no longer valid. So update them now. Please? It's terribly demoralizing to see that teeny tiny little digit next to "number of subscribers". Thanks bunches.


  • At 10:43 AM, Blogger Lady Tramaine said…

    I am with you totally! i just dropped off my stepson at camp for the week. By far, the best money I have ever spent. Fun for him, freedom for me!!

  • At 5:11 PM, Blogger Unknown said…

    You are a beautiful writer. I wish you would publish a lot of books, because I'd be your biggest fan!

  • At 5:12 PM, Blogger Christine said…

    We don't have a regular babysitter anymore...I have tasted that type of freedom in ages. The closest I come is both of them being occupied by friends so I can have some guilt free me time.

    Sounds like a wonderful evening. And I get the wine snobbery thing, although I generally slum it in the $10-$15 range with my pinots, zins, and cabs. Otherwise we'd go broke, even here in wine country land.

  • At 10:19 PM, Blogger Girlplustwo said…

    oh, this is a beautiful, beautiful post. an anthem for lost time. for cherishing the gift of time.

    for love itself.

    banjos and all.

  • At 6:32 AM, Blogger Ms. Skywalker said…

    You've inspired me.

    I'm totally soaking in a long, hot bath tonight.

    With that mask from somewhere that was a week's worth of lunches expensive on my face.

    I might even work on the afternoon delight. :)

    As always, there were so many words that sang a beautiful song to my heart.

    You rock.

  • At 8:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I'd be willing to risk Deliverance country babysitting for a night out. The only babysitter I have is spongebob and that guy's kind of an asshole.

  • At 9:03 AM, Blogger Chicky Chicky Baby said…

    Your evening sounds perfect! And it made me realize just how badly I need a night out myself.

  • At 2:10 PM, Blogger Sarahviz said…

    Sounds like such a nice break from the day-to-day drudgery!

  • At 3:34 PM, Blogger Sarah said…

    A beautiful post. A beautiful sentiment. And pretty much exactly how I feel when (rarely) we are away from the boys.

  • At 5:47 PM, Blogger J. Denae said…

    My daughter just left for a whole, blissfully quiet week. Sigh. I love being able to miss her!
    I'm off to eat bad food without worrying about what kind of example I ma setting!

  • At 9:59 PM, Blogger flutter said…

    forget your evening, I want your breakfast

  • At 8:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Love your blog... you are a terrific writer!!
    You should enter your blog name into our contest over at Pinks & Blues.. .love it!!
    - Audrey
    Pinks & Blues Girls

  • At 10:29 AM, Blogger OhTheJoys said…

    Rabun county, huh? It's so gorgeous up there.

    I am so jealous!


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