Calmer now...

Thursday, January 6th, 2011 12:03 pm
auntbijou: (Golden-eyed Weasley)
Just in case you didn't see the ETA at the bottom of my entry earlier, [personal profile] tilia_tomentosa and [personal profile] theoldone sent me a link HERE showing that on December 21, 2010, the United Nations backtracked and reinserted the words, "sexual orientation" into the U.N. resolution against unjustified executions.

Thank goodness, and what a relief.

But still... why didn't this make the news???

Okay, so... I'm still a little angry.

*hugs all her gay friends just that much harder*
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
Guys? How did we miss the United Nations voting to allow gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgender individuals to be executed without cause... well, except for their being gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, etc?

It happened on November 20, 2010... and we missed it!!

No one reported on it. I found a vague mention in the BBC News archives, but not in any of the other main news services, not CNN, not ABC, hell, not even NPR!!! WTF???

So how did I find it? I found an interesting image of a man in a dress suit with a rope for a tie,




and when I clicked it to get a better look, it took me straight HERE.

Now, the article shocked me, and I couldn't quite believe it, so, I immediately used my Google-fu and, omg... it's true. The closest I could come to finding anything that mentions anything close to a vote on the right date is this one, which does not mention sexual orientation, and the article is from the day before the vote. And I found THIS on the New Civil Rights Movement site.

So, basically, what happened is... the United Nations General Assembly voted in November to remove sexual orientation from a resolution addressing extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions. In other words... if you are in a country where it is a crime to be gay, bisexual, or transgender, the United Nations is perfectly okay with that.

O_o!!

Is anyone surprised that among the countries voting for this stupidity, we have Iran, Nigeria, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Iraq?

I am happy and gratified to learn that the United States voted against this. As did the United Kingdom, Australia, and many European countries.

But, people, seriously??? How did this happen and NOT make the news??? I don't get to watch the news as often as I like, but trust me, I would have perked up my ears, sat up and listened! I have loved ones who could be affected by this!! And even if I didn't, it would still be WRONG!

Words are just not enough. It's the United Nations, people!!

Excuse me, I'm going to go bang my head into something until the rage goes away and I can think about it without wanting to kill someone...

ETA: Here, another link for you to read.

ETA #2: And yet another link.

ETA #3: Thanks to [personal profile] tilia_tomentosa and [personal profile] theoldone for sharing this, the United Nations back-tracked and reinserted the words "sexual orientation" into the resolution regarding unjustified executions on December 21, 2010, link HERE. Thank goodness! But the fact that it could have passed in the first place is still horrifying!!!
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
So there I am, supervising the Impossible Son as he cuts butter into flour and salt to make pie crusts when the dulcet tones of Toploader crooning, "Dancing in the Moonlight" alerts me to the fact that someone is calling me. I look at the Caller ID, see my mother's name, and immediately think, "Uh-oh, the Flaky Sister is calling."

Yeah, I know, that's not a normal conclusion to jump to, but see when my mom calls me, she calls me from her landline hone to my landline phone, because that's just the number she's used to, and knows she'll get me eventually.

The Flaky Sister, however, when she calls me, she wants me to answer, dammit! And she knows I always have the mobile on me, so... she calls me from the landline phone she shares with Mom to my mobile. Because she knows I'll always answer (unless I'm at the doctor or in a movie theater).

So, I answer cautiously because lately, when the Flaky Sister calls, it's because something is wrong.

I say, "Hello."

"You and the Blonde Sister are coming here the day before Christmas, and you're staying the day after Christmas, because I. Am not. Doing this. Again. Ever."

Ooookaaaaay...

Apparently, Mom was criticizing her cooking.

*pause to die laughing*

As some of you will remember from past Thanksgiving debacles, the Flaky Sister isn't exactly... the best of cooks. Ouch, I think I just strained a muscle saying that.

She thinks she can cook, but... gods, there just is not enough antacid on the planet, I swear!

Mom wants to be sure the meal is edible so... she's... trying to head Flaky off at the pass, so to speak, but... well, Mom and Flaky get along about as well as oil and water, you know? So, I said mildly, "Mom's micro-managing your cooking?"

"Gaaaaah!" the Flaky Sister said, then she asked in stern tones, "Do you know how to salt and pepper a turkey?" and I had a moment of utter panic, thinking OMG, is she dumping Thanksgiving in MY lap at the last minute, WTF???

Instead, I said mildly, "Yes, I do. Who do you think helped Mom with the turkey after you and Blondie got married?"

The Flaky Sister said, "Yeah, well... so do I! But does Mother think I can salt and pepper a turkey?"

I refrained from saying, "Well, she knows you can salt and pepper a turkey, it's probably the amount of salt, plus the stick of butter you're trying to add that has her concerned..." because, well, I don't know she was trying to add a stick of butter...

Instead, I said, "She probably misses being able to do the turkey herself."

Not the most diplomatic thing I could have said, but... there you are. I won't go into the rest of the conversation, which was short, but... I ended up promising that we would arrive earlier than usual, to help out. And you should be very proud of me, I didn't do anything more than wince when she told me she was making stringbeans with parsley, thyme, oregano, bacon, and oh, I hope, I so hope I misunderstood her, but... possibly basil or was it something that makes me think of lemons... oh, I dunno, but... it was not something that is normally added to stringbeans, and knowing the ingrained habits of my family... no one is going to want to eat it.

I called the Blonde Sister after I'd gotten the pie in the oven, just to find out what the HELL was going on. After asking if she had received a grumpy call from a very cranky sister, I said, "Remind me again, why did we decide the Flaky Sister would be handling Thanksgiving and Christmas?"

"Because she has a bigger house?" The Blonde Sister said cautiously. Then she laughed and said, "Guess I'd better take Christmas after all, huh?"

"Please! I mean, seriously, at least one of our holiday meals should be edible!"

She died laughing and said, "The Brotherly One said the EXACT SAME THING!!!"

I knew there was a reason I liked him so much!!

We chatted a while longer, laughing and venting a bit and shaking our heads over our sister. I didn't know until tonight that the Blonde Sister had no idea that the Flaky Sister thinks of herself as the "Good Daughter."

"What, is she trying to say that you and I are the BAD ones here?" the Blonde Sister asked with an amused snort.

"Well, I'm the Black Sheep, I don't know what the heck you're supposed to be," I replied.

"You're not a black sheep," she said, laughing, "We're both black sheep!"

"Own it, Sister!" was about the only thing I could say at that point.

Funny thing is, I only just realized lately how little my sisters have really talked with our mom. Well... let me rephrase that. How little my sisters have listened to our mom. Both of my sisters have complained over and over about how Mom refuses to open the curtains in the living room. Or raise the blinds over the kitchen sink. I pointed out that both sets of windows are on the side of the house, facing into the side yard which looks like an alley. And Mom has issues with that.

The Blonde Sister had no idea what I was talking about, so I had to explain yet again about when Mom and her family lived in downtown Houston next to an Italian restaurant called "Delmonico's." And that there was no restroom in the restaurant (it was 1930's Houston, what can I say?), so male patrons would go into the alley between Delmonico's and the house Mom was living in to relieve themselves, and because they didn't want to piss against the wall of the restaurant, they'd face the house.

They had no air conditioning, so the windows in Mom's family's house were always open, night and day, and so when Mom would go into her bedroom, it wasn't unusual to see two or three men's heads right at the window sill, peering in while they relieved themselves. And sometimes, they'd try to talk to Mom and her brothers, and it always, always freaked her out (can't blame her at all, either).

The Blonde Sister had no idea. "Mom wasn't like that about our house!" she said in surprise.

"Yes, she was," I said calmly. "That's why Daddy planted rose bushes by all the side windows of the house. It was the only way he could get her to open those windows. The rose bushes made her feel safe."

"How do you know all this?" the Blonde Sister demanded.

"I asked her!" I said, exasperated. "Good grief, Blondie, Mom has all these great stories, and you'll never hear them if you don't ask her about them. Try asking her what Houston was like when she was a little girl. Or ask her about how Aunt Dee Dee handled ice deliveries. Ask how Aunt Dee Dee kept the mockingbirds and blue jays from picking the paper caps off the milk bottles when they were delivered in the mornings! Or about how her brothers embarrassed her by putting boobs on the snowman she built."

Sometimes, my sisters annoy the heck out of me. Whenever Mom gets onto one of her fussing jags, all you have to do to distract her and get her onto another groove is ask about her childhood, or about the war years, or the summers she spent on the family farm in Louisiana, or how she managed to date our Marine dad despite three extremely over-protective Navy brothers who had no love for Jar-heads.

Well, the cookies are baked, the pies are done, the tarts turned out fine... and I am ready for bed.

And I promise not to kill the Flaky Sister. I don't look very good in orange, anyway.

Happy Thanksgiving to you all!
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
Something sort of... deja-vu-ish about today.

Yesterday, Mr. Impossible got stung by a bee during a make-up soccer game. He got fouled, knocked over, and landed on... a bee.

Yay.

Popped a Benadryl in his mouth, put baking soda on it, and crossed my fingers. The swelling went down, and he seemed fine.

Then, this morning... hello delayed reaction!

*head-desk*

Oh, and the Impertinent One? Yeah, running a fever this morning, so... she's home, too.

Did I mention the doctor's office was completely double-booked by ten minutes after 8 this morning?

*grumblegrumblegrumble*

Hello? Can someone stop this roller coaster, please? I'd like to get off now, kthnxbai!

Boy on Fire!!!

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010 08:58 am
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
So yesterday, I picked the Impossible Son up from school as usual and when he climbed in the car, he said this week was "Stop-The-Bullying" week at his school, and in celebration of this, the kids in his class got to watch a film.

Prepare yourselves.

Now, the thing you have to understand is that when the Impossible Son is excited, or confused, or upset, his narrative tends to get somewhat... garbled. It's even worse when he's trying to work through his memory to tell you the story.

So, he started telling me about the film, and I could tell it bothered him, because his eyes were big, and his voice got high, and he was speaking very fast, as if he just wanted to get it over with as quickly as possible. The basic gist of what he told me is this; Kid A starts bullying Kid B. Kid B tells, and Kid A is suspended from school. His parents ground him for a month and take away all his privileges, so all he can basically do is just lay on his bed in his room and do nothing. This makes Kid A feel bad, and finally... he sets himself on fire.

Yes, you read that right. Go ahead and read it again, I'll just sit here and file my nails while I wait.

Done?

Okay, to reiterate, Kid A feels so bad he SETS HIMSELF ON FIRE.

This is bad.

He goes to the hospital and when he comes back, he has a lot of scars. The Impossible Son doesn't specify where the scars are, but I get a pretty good idea after Kid A goes back to school, because all his bullying buddies turn on him and call him "Pizza Face."

However, Kid B, his former victim, stands up for him and everyone stops. Kid A still has to transfer to another school, where he meets Kid C, who becomes his best friend and supporter, and when Kid A's teacher finds out what happened to him, he throws Kid A a party. The end.

O_o????

So... the message is... don't bully or you might set yourself on fire, and then your new teacher will give you a party???

Once Mr. Impossible told me about it, we talked about it and I asked him what he thought about it, and he said it was kinda freaky, because OMG, THE BOY WAS ON FIRE!! And I said, "Wait, did they show him on fire? I mean, did the film show him setting himself on fire and burning?"

"It was pretty weird, Mom," he said, which didn't really answer my question.

I backed off for a bit, then asked him about it again when we got home and he said, "It was just a movie," and I asked him if he thought what the boy had done was the right thing to do. He said, "It was pretty stupid to set himself on fire. It just made everything worse. All he had to do was just read some books to get through the boredom, and the month would be over and he could go back to playing and stuff. I didn't like that, it was stupid."

I thought, okay, no worries on that front. He understood that much.

I forgot about my son's overactive imagination.

The Husbandly One put him to bed last night while I made lunches early, because I felt like crap and just wanted to go to bed. And it looked like I was actually going to get to bed before 11 p.m., it really did! Until I sat down at the computer only to find a shivering child next to me with tears streaming down his face.

"What on earth?" I asked and he threw himself into my arms.

"I can't stop thinking about the boy being on fire!" he wailed.

. . .

It took putting him in our bed with THO on one side of him and me on the other, and a LOT of talking to settle him down. And none of the usual, "Think about cookies, think about Grandma holding you while she sings, think about Muta purring as he curls up next to you," worked to distract him. Finally, I had to give him a lot of water imagery to focus on, until he decided to imagine Katara from Avatar using her waterbending healing skills to put the fire out, and then he finally relaxed. I ended up having to sit at the computer so the light from the screen would light the room up enough to let him go to sleep. It was after midnight when THO was able to finally carry him to his bed and tuck him in.

Needless to say, I have emailed his teacher to get an idea of what actually happened yesterday. I called the school, but after the trouble it took for the secretary to understand me (I have a nasty case of laryngitis right now), email seemed to be a better idea.

*sighs*

Can we please just have one week without some sort of excitement going on around here? Just one???

GAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!

Sunday, July 11th, 2010 02:22 pm
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
The World Cup is on.

My kids are on the XBox, playing Mini Ninjas and getting along. They are laughing, and having fun, and getting along, and not shouting or crying or stomping off in extreme grumpiness. Any mother worth her salt would recognize one of those Rare Moments, and would not disturb this for anything.

And ESPN is NOT streaming it live on their website!!!

WTF????

*is hopping mad*

I'm listening to it on ESPN Radio, but... IT'S NOT THE SAME!!!!

They've had live streams of every other game... so... why not this one???

AAAAAAAUUUGGGHHHH!!!!!!!
auntbijou: (Calcifer)
Or maybe I should have titled it "The Angst of Auntie."

*sigh*

Where do I even begin? Life has been... difficult. And for the stupidest of reasons. I can't go fully into it, but suffice it to say, I think that the Husbandly One and I are going to be most definitely resigning our positions on the soccer board. The past five months have been... hard.

We have a person on the board who... if we had known ahead of time what we know now, we would not have voted him on. And one of the present board members, who has not been on the board as long as we have, has a great deal of... emotional investment in this person. Quite a few of us on the board think the person is... not entirely honest, and poses a serious risk to the board and the organization, but the board member is adamant that it is all lies, libel, etc, and has told us any move on our part to have this person removed would result in legal action against us.

There is nothing in our bylaws that will allow us to get rid of this person, save catching him red-handed with his hand in the cookie jar. Which I personally suspect is not long in coming.

In the meantime, THO and I are being accused of having a "personal bias" against this person, and THO has been told he has "control issues."

This, right in the middle of our trying to deal with the city and the issues with the fields (the city wants to "disk" our fields, which would totally and completely screw them up, not to mention wrecking the sprinkler heads on the irrigation system WE installed). We were going to resign at the end of this season anyway, because the Impertinent Daughter has gone as far as she can go in this league. We don't have enough kids to field a U15 and up team in the fall. We never have. So, that means we need to go to a league in San Marcos, or New Braunfels, or gods help us, Austin. And if we have to take one kid to practice in another town, it seems ridiculous to leave the other to play here. Might as well move both of them and not have to try to go to two different practices in two different towns, and then two different sets of games on the weekends. And if our kids aren't playing in the league, then there's really no point in us being on the board, since we will be basically running hither and yon anyway. There just won't be time for it. So, maybe this was our wake-up call that it's time to move on.

In other news, I have the sinking feeling that the 8th grade principal at the junior high is well on her way to some sort of mental breakdown. That or the sweet smiles I've graced her with whenever I'm at the junior high are finally shredding her nerves!

I quote from the Impertinent Daughter's journal on DeviantArt...

"I got nothing else to really report.

Oh, no wait... the principal is going all psychotic about the dress code again.

So after giving us some other crazed up lecture and making everyone late for class, she released the boys but held the girls back. Then she told the custodians to close the doors in the cafeteria so no one could get into the cafeteria. At that point I was getting worried. But then she started on a rant about how the girls were wearing too low-cut shirts (I don't) and that we weren't supposed to do that and that we will get in trouble if we do. Then she started to complain about us wearing short shorts and told us again that we COULD NOT WEAR SHORTS THAT DON'T TOUCH OUR KNEES. Not even a CENTIMETER above the knee. No. Then she started complaining about how we use our jackets to hide low cut shirts or we hold our binders in front of our chests to hide the low cut shirts. I swear, if she could outlaw jackets from the dress code she would. And the way she went on about all of this made it seem like we were doing illegal drugs instead of breaking a few slight dress code rules. Ugh. I hate her so much. "

They were ten minutes late to their next class.

And this doesn't include the lecture she was giving the kids about talking, etc.

Oh, haven't I mentioned, the majority of the kids lunch periods is taken up with Mrs. Sees-Plots-Everywhere and Principal Noodlehead lecturing the kids from the stage? Oh yes, with microphones and everything. "You need to think about the decisions you make, you must make appropriate decisions or you will be left behind, or worse, find yourself in a place you never imagined." "There is too much talking and not enough eating going on in here!" "You need to change your behavior, blah, blah, blah, blah..." which is pretty much what it degenerates into. I am stunned every single time I walk into that school to hear one of those two women droning into the microphone or haranguing them for something: "you over there! You need to stop clumping up and stand on the blue line! Stand on the blue line for the lunch line, stop cutting and talking! Do you hear me over there? STAND ON THE BLUE LINE OR I'LL TAKE AWAY YOUR SWIM DAY PRIVILEGES!!"

This goes on every single school day, for all three lunch periods!! And personally? I think they are massively counterproductive.

The good news is... they are not going to be returning to the junior high in the fall. The bad news is, we have 30 more days of this shit to live through.

What I tremble to find out is... where are they going next? Because Mrs. Sees-Plots-Everywhere keeps getting removed from the junior high, then a year or two later, turns up at one of the other schools like a bad penny only to be removed by the virulent and furious insistence of the parents... whereupon they ship her back to the junior high.

Which means she'll be back by the time the Impossible Son makes it to the junior high.

Personally, I'm thinking of shooting an email to the school board president and saying something along the lines of, "I think Mrs. Sees-Plots-Everywhere is getting close to a mental breakdown. Her OCD is going into over-drive, and I'm worried for the welfare of the students. Granted, she's only got 30 more days to go, but enough is enough, get the crazy bitch out of there."

Of course, I would word it a bit more tactfully and diplomatically than that, being the awesome writer that I am.

I'm sorry, but spending ten minutes haranguing the girls about the length of their shorts, and whether or not they are wearing "low-cut" shirts is... too much time.

This is one of those times when small-town life loses its appeal.Life
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
Dear Numerous Fiction Writers,

Please do pick up your dictionaries, or go to dictionary.com, and use the damn things!!

Discreet - (adjective) Careful or circumspect in one's speech or actions, especially in order to avoid causing offense or to gain an advantage: We made discreet inquiries.
*Intentionally unobtrusive: A discreet cough...

Discrete - (adjective) Separate and distinct: speech sounds are produced as a continuous sound signal rather than discrete units.


They sound the same, but they do not mean the same thing and thus cannot be used interchangeably.

Also...

Taut - (adjective) Stretched or pulled tight; not slack: the fabric stays taut without adhesive.

*(especially of muscles or nerves) tense; not relaxed.

Taunt - (noun) A remark made to anger, wound, or provoke someone.

Provoke or challenge (someone) with insulting remarks: students began taunting her about her weight.

Reproach (someone) with something in a contemptuous way: she had taunted him with going to another man.



These barely sound the same, and definitely do not mean the same thing!!

Also, news writers, telephone POLES are what fall when you have an earthquake. POLLS fall when those questioned don't approve or agree.

You cannot depend on Spell-Check. Please use your brain as well!!!

GAAAAH!!!!


Extremely annoyed,

Auntie


I swear, y'all, if I have to read about another "taunt belly" or about a lawyer warning his client to be discrete in revealing his whereabouts, I will scream!!!

*throws up hands in exasperation*
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
Dear Angry Soccer Mom,

Really, I do understand your concerns about the soccer fields. They are crap. Complete and total crap. And they are definitely a lawsuit waiting to happen.

However... sending angry and vaguely threatening emails to every member of the city council, berating them on the condition of the fields, and for not doing anything about them, is not helping us. Or the kids.

1. Yes, the fields are full of rocks and weeds, they need to be stripped and dressed, the rocks pressed back into the ground, a new layer of soil and sod laid down, seeded, etc. However, none of that is going to do any good if we don't get the fields irrigated, and right now, we've only gotten three of them done because... that's all the city gave us money for!! And we had to do the work ourselves!

2. Yes, there does need to be sidewalks to all the fields. We agree with you on that. In fact, we've been pointing this out to the City for quite some time, mostly to deaf ears. We've pointed out the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the fact that we could be sued, since there are several handicapped relatives of players who cannot get out to the fields without a great deal of help. However, once again, the CITY owns the fields.

3. There is no point at all in trying to do anything with the fields right now. The season started last weekend. We will be playing games every weekend until May. In order for anything to be done to improve the fields, we would have to tear them up, which would render them... unplayable. And again, there is no point doing anything to the fields until they are irrigated, which they are not, and the city has told us that there is no more money for improvements until next year.

4. Writing to every single member of the city council is great. We applaud you. However, blaming the soccer board for problems that are actually the provence of the city is definitely playing dirty pool. I realize you probably have no idea that we really have no control over the field conditions, though we've been trying for three and a half years. You would have earned more respect from me if you had (1) signed your name and (2) gotten other parents to write as well. Right now, you just look like a one-woman vendetta that is just barely this side of crazy and I bet City Council, from the tone of your last email, is wondering if they ought to install metal detectors outside of City Hall.

Get some other parents involved, and get them to write, too, and even better, sign your names. And you know, we could really use volunteers to help dig the trenches to lay the waterlines, since we have to do the work ourselves, oh, and if you could help us dig out the rocks and stuff, that would be great, and hey, help us raise money to do this stuff, and we might actually respect you. Otherwise, STFU and stop pissing the Parks Board off, They're refusing to mow the fields, you dumbass!!

No love,

Auntie


Yes, we have this angry parent who has been writing letters to the City Council, demanding that they fix the fields right now. As in, this minute, dammit!! Honey, if I had the power, I would wave my wand and say something like, "Viridis Agri!" and "Expello Cilicis!"

However, redressing the fields is going to take a lot of hot, sweaty grunt work, and it's going to take time. For one thing, when the fields were built, the City took the lowest bid, and the fields were dressed with construction fill.

Yes. You read that right. Construction fill. You know, the stuff that construction companies throw away? Because it's full of crap like glass, chunks of asphalt, rocks, metal... all that good stuff!! Yes, that's just what you want on a soccer field, right?

Now do y'all understand why I say that soccer is the red-headed step-child of sports in this town?

This was once a volcanically active area, and we have rocky soil. You'll find limestone, flint... you name it, we got it. And it percolates up through the soil with every rain. It's not unusual to dig in your garden and toss out a wheelbarrow's worth of rocks. Add that to the rocks in the soil they used to dress the fields, and you begin to understand the scope of our problems. Not only that, but the recent drought showed how badly the fields were leveled. It's just... so frustrating!! And then the irrigation issues.

The soccer board does not have the money to irrigate the fields. Even if we did, we wouldn't be allowed to because the board doesn't own the fields. The CITY does, and we lease them. We've managed to lay irrigation for three fields, but... WE had to do the grunt work. The City bought the pipe, fittings, and all that, and WE had to supply the trencher, shovels, and warm bodies to do the work. No, they did not hire a plumber. They paid a master plumber and a master electrician to consult with us, and draw up a plan... but not to do the work, or even oversee us.

Yeah, that's exactly the problem we're dealing with. That, and our liaison on the Parks Board is a man who can't make up his mind whether or not to retire, and rather than actually do anything, he continually promises to do stuff for the soccer fields, promises to send this or that, or put this project through, or that... and then ignores it. Needless to say, neither the baseball or football leagues have this problem with him.

It's very frustrating, and then to have this... person... writing the city council, implying that it's the laziness of the soccer board that is responsible for the problems at the fields is... beyond frustrating!! And then she doesn't even have the guts to sign her name??

*tears out hair*

The last email she sent, which I got a copy of in my inbox today, is... well... it's vaguely creepy. And faintly scary. We suspect it's a mom from one team in particular, but the coach (who is also a board member) has not been able to get anyone to confess. Nor has he apparently been able to get her to understand what our role is, and how exactly our hands have been tied.

This is so... frustrating!!!! GAAAAAHH!!!!
auntbijou: (Default)
Wow. So... [profile] thanfiction is... not what he... er... she... um...

*gives up*

Just... go read THIS.

The only thing I can really say is [profile] thanfiction gave me the push I needed to start drawing again. Which I'm really glad of, but... the disappointment and the feeling that someone is so totally wasting their talent for such a completely stupid purpose... well... it makes me sad.

It is, however, the first time I've ever been grateful to be somewhat stand-offish and almost overly cautious.

Just... wow. Seriously? Wow.
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
Every once in a while, I run a Google search on my username, and on my real name, the Husbandly One's real name, the kids' names, etc, just to see what comes up, and to keep track of things.

Today, on a whim, I ran a Google on "Impertinent Daughter," just to see what comes up. And I ran across an entry from an LJ user who is a fellow member of [profile] eat_my_bento, and back in March commented about an entry I had made on the comm. You know... I don't know exactly how to...

*pauses*

I love my children very, very much. They sometimes exasperate me, drive me to the edge of my reason, and make me want to either tear my hair out, or find a quiet corner and weep. But they also fill me with joy, make me unbelievably proud, remind me why I'm glad to be a parent, and make my life complete in ways I'm still discovering.

And I hope very much that this comes across in my journal.

When I read this particular entry, I was horrified to discover that this person has deducted, from the fact that I call my daughter the Impertinent Daughter, and Miss Priss, that I don't like my daughter, and said if her mother had called her that, she'd "be walking around with a massive inferiority complex." She also took exception to my calling my son Impossible, and based on an entry I'd made about him having stomach flu, felt I considered him an inconvenience.

Dear gods, y'all... do I really sound like that???

And yes, I do know what "impertinent" means. "Not showing proper respect; rude; exceeding the bounds of propriety." And I do know the alternative meaning, "not pertinent to a particular matter; irrelevant." I am using impertinent in the "not showing proper respect" meaning. Why? Because when my daughter was three, a man who was a complete stranger to her, to myself, and to her father, wanted her to kiss him on the cheek. He was an elderly man, said she reminded him of his granddaughter, and wanted to her to kiss him because she was "such a little darling."

She drew away from him and wrapped herself around my legs, and I knelt down and picked her up, backing away from this perfectly nice man because I didn't like him, either. He said, "Aw, don't you want to give me a little kiss?"

She said, "No. I don't know you, and I don't like you. Go away!"

Of course, he was terribly offended and said, "What an impertinent daughter you have!"

And I said, "Yes, yes, I do, and I'm very proud of her! And you should be ashamed of yourself for trying to force a little girl to kiss a complete stranger!!"

Nope, I have never forced either of my kids to kiss or hug anyone, whether it's a relative, a friend, or a complete stranger. Never wanted to take away their power to say, "NO!" in that sort of situation at all.

But at that time, I was proud to think my child was impertinent. And she has been impertinent... in some very pertinent ways. When a boy tells her he likes her, and she does not like him, she's told him so, and when he persisted, went so far as to threaten to rip his arm off and beat him over the head with it. Yes, very Impertinent, and I'm glad of it. So you could say my calling her the "Impertinent Daughter" is my way of celebrating her inner strength, determination, and personal empowerment. Self-esteem issues? Not at all.

This is not to say she isn't polite, because she is. But, she will very much stand up for herself, and I'm glad.

And as for the Impossible Son, well... he is, sometimes. My son is generous to a fault, affectionate, bright, easy-going... and incredibly stubborn. It is a trait he shares with his mother, meaning me. And there are times when I have to walk out of the room, grab a pillow, and scream into it, then scrounge around deep inside myself for another scrap of patience so I can go back and try to explain/deal with/help my son without losing my mind. I am trying like heck to follow my mother's example, and channel his stubbornness into something positive, rather than something intractible and counterproductive.

And, gods help me, sometimes, I need more patience than one small woman can possibly possess.

But sometimes, he's the Impossible Son, because he manages to do things that should be impossible for him. He's so tiny (people sometimes think he's in first grade) but can lift things that should be far too heavy for him. He can climb things that give us all horrors, finding finger and toe-holds that just... aren't there. I could go on and on, but... y'all already know the stories.

Besides which, in real life, I don't actually call my kids, "Impertinent Daughter" and "Impossible Son." I call them by their names. I call them "Honey," and "Love," and "Bubba," and "Button," and "Honey-Girl," and "Sugar-Bee," and "Peanut," and "Punkin," and all the endearments a Texas and Southern heritage has emplanted in my brain. When I do say to my son, "You, sir, are impossible!" with a hint of exasperation in my voice, I ruffle his hair, and he beams up at me and says, "Yeah, I know, but I come by it honest, right?" and I say, "Right!" Because he knows he has a long line of stubborn and impossible coming from both sides of his family.

And my daughter comes from a long line of strong, "impertinent" women.

That's what was in my mind when I chose those names for my kids to use in this journal. I don't use their real life names in this journal, and there are only a very, very few of you who know those names, for a reason. I protect my children. And that is that.

I love my children very, very much. They are not an inconvenience to me, and I have never let them think so. Neither has my husband. Both of us have had our full share of crap in our childhoods that we made a conscious decision to NOT pass on. I shouldn't let what someone who doesn't know me said bother me so much, but the thought that I have implied, in some way, shape, or form, that I don't like my kids, or ignore them, or find them "inconvenient" somewhere or somehow in this journal makes me... well... furious. And horrified.

I get exasperated with them, but then, I'm human, and I don't know a woman on this planet who doesn't get exasperated with her kids at least two or three times a day. Anyone who doesn't isn't normal.

I'm starting to lose the focus of what I was saying, but jays, this really, really got under my skin.

I think I'll go rip up some weeds, or bake some bread so I can pound the dough and vent my spleen!!!!
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
Just when I think I've gotten over being furious with the Impossible Son's second grade teacher... something happens that makes me furious all over again!!

*takes slow deep breaths to calm down*

I knew he had lost a lot of instruction time last year, thanks to Oblivious Teacher and the bully incident , but I didn't realize just how much until yesterday, when I was helping him with his math homework.

AAAAAUUGGHH!!!!
Cut, because OMG, such a long story!! )
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
The Impertinent Daughter's bag was confiscated today.

*glowers*

See, the Husbandly One got us both Dumbledore's Army messenger bags. Mine was a birthday present, and hers was to keep her from absconding with mine. Because... she wanted one, too!

I am using mine as sort of a purse, because, well, Auntie is a mom, so... I carry Mom-type things in it (tissues, a small sewing kit, a few bandages in a small bag, Germex, etc), and I like to sketch sometimes, so... a small sketchbook and a bag of pencils, etc, and then there's my wallet, a small hairbrush, my DS Lite for those times when I'm waiting and unable to sketch or read... you get the picture, right?

The Impertinent One was using hers for pretty much the same purpose. She carried her wallet, her emergency moon cycle stuff, pencils, pens, phone ( I think in today's world, when a kid starts junior high, they need a basic, no frills cell phone), and had room for her gym clothes and her zippered binder. It's smaller than the bags most of the girls at her school carry as "purses," so we thought it would pass muster.

Besides, the dress code only bans backpacks. Not any other type bag. Just backpacks.

She's used this bag for two weeks with no problem. Then today, the 8th grade principal stopped her, thinking she was a new student (!!) and confiscated the bag. When Miss Priss said, "Ms. Principal, it's me, the Impertinent Daughter," Ms Principal frowned, then said, "Oh, my, you've had a hair cut!"

O_o???

Her hair was cut two weeks before school began.

Nonetheless, Ms. Principal took her bag, making her take everything out of it and saying it would be too easy for someone to steal her stuff.

Um... what??? What the hell does THAT mean?? If the bag is on Impertinent's shoulder, and it is closed with straps and buckles... then... how does that make it easy for someone to get into to steal her stuff??

Not only that, but it seems there were six other girls nearby, all with bags bigger than Miss Priss' bag, but... they weren't being confiscated.

Now, I have been in and out of that school. And I see girls on a frequent basis with bags that are about the size of your average beach bag. Big enough to literally hide behind, right? And no one has ever taken them away. Needless to say, I will be making an appointment to see Ms. Principal tomorrow to talk about this issue with the bags. Because, like so many other things at that school, they are not being consistent. Okay, you don't want the girls to carry large bags? Then you better start lining them up in the gym every damn morning for bag inspection, and if some of them are carrying bags that are too big, they better go, no matter WHO their daddy is and how much he donates to the football team!

Can you tell I'm getting all riled up? I wouldn't be so cranky about this if it was a district wide policy. But it isn't. It's only at the junior high. The freshman campus, and the high school allow backpacks. They also allow normal clothing choices. So why just at the junior high?

Not a clue.

Should be interesting tomorrow, that's for sure!
auntbijou: (Steven Fry LOL)
Some of you may remember THIS little adventure of mine from three years ago.

Well... yesterday, I had a lot of errands to run, and finished up with another visit to the grocery store to pick up things I had forgotten on Tuesday. I was hot, tired, I just wanted to go home, and I was also thinking of things I needed to do when I got there. So, I was again on autopilot. I went to my van, unlocked the back, and started stowing my groceries. Vaguely, at the back of my mind, there was a transient thought of Something's missing, but I rather irritably chalked it up to having forgotten something at the store, and I wasn't about to go back and get it! No, I just wanted to go HOME. It was 102, I was soaked in sweat, and my flip flops were melting to the asphalt. I just wanted out and back into the cool, you know?

So, I close the back of the van and put the basket away, then hop in my car, thinking vaguely, Didn't I put up the sun shade? Oh, well, guess I forgot again and then wondered why the car was still so cool despite sitting in full sun for at least 30 minutes. Then I thought, "Wait... where are the Soot Sprites I hung on the mirror? And when did my car get so clean??"

At that moment, I just happened to look at the car parked on my right... and saw my Soot Sprites hanging from the mirror, in front of a silver sun shade. I wasn't sitting in my car!!

I had done it... AGAIN!!

You know what the worst part was? I had to unload the groceries, then put them in MY car!!!

*dies*

That brief thought I had about something being missing? Yeah, that was the myriad bumper stickers the Husbandly One has thoughtfully put all over the back door of my van!!!

I can say this, the owner of the mirror van no longer has a Virgin Mary on the dashboard or a pink flamingo hanging from the mirror. But her car is still insanely clean!!

After I got over my frustration, I laughed pretty damn hard at myself. And you can imagine that Auntie will very carefully check EVERYTHING before she so much as pokes her key in the door again!!
auntbijou: (Default)
Um... guys? What happened to Skyehawke? It's... just... gone. All that's up is a blank page with the words "This account has been suspended" at the top. WTF??

*sniffles* I love Skyehawke! It's... sane, and the fics are good and...

*sniffles*

I want it back.

ETA: It's BACK!! YAY!!!
auntbijou: (Default)
The same groceries that last year would have cost me about $60 during my quick run to the store cost me $120 today!!!

WTF???

I know prices have gone up, but JAYS!!! That HURTS!!!

A-Guh???

Wednesday, January 9th, 2008 01:07 pm
auntbijou: (Default)
What... the... f...?????? 

What?? Nair for 10 year olds??? 


I'm... floored.  And... did I mention... floored???
auntbijou: (Default)
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*bows her head in shame at the damage done to the American educational system over the last 25 years*

Oh, dear Merlin in the Summerland!! Here she is, living proof that yes, peroxide does cause brain damage!!! "Is France a country??"

Is she kidding???

Keepin' it surreal, yo!!

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