Give me your hand, child.

I’m violating my personal moral code even as we speak. “CSI” is on. Why? Too lazy to reach for the remote. Also, they just made a boner joke. I need to know what my baby daughter is going to be exposed to soon enough. Marg Helgenberger in perfect lip gloss and tousled hair on the job, check. Boner jokes, check.

Just switched to “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” They make boner jokes too, but the difference is: They’re funny.

OK, then.

The wind howled last night. I mean: Old Mariah was calling its name all night long.

(Did you get that reference? I didn’t think so. Let me tell you, when the world lost the Merv Griffin show, where lonely latchkey children like me could watch John Davidson sing showtunes and thus broaden our cultural reference points — well, we lost something important. I never saw “Paint Your Wagon,” but in the right mood, after about two thousand beers, I might stand up and sing Way out west they got a name for wind and rain and fire. The rain is Tess, the fire’s Joe and they call the wind Mariah… And for the record, I have never, EVER heard any westerner, or any American for that matter, call any of those natural phenomenon by those names. Or by any name. During the Yellowstone fires, did anyone say, “Joe is threatening the back country near Mammoth Hot Springs?” Didn’t think so.)

Anyway, the wind was out of control last night. It sent so many acorns, branches and other random crap raining onto the roof it sounded as though we were under attack. I cannot sleep well in a high wind, unless the nearest tree is no closer than half a mile away. So I wandered around the house, finally landing in the guest room, where I had a very vivid dream that Kate wouldn’t let me sleep, kept coming into my room to bug me, so I took her hand, put it in my mouth, and bit as hard as I could. Seconds later, there she was, waking me up. “What are you DOING here?” I hissed, thinking I had just bitten her hand off. “Go back to bed.”

“It’s 6:50,” she said. Nearly time to get up anyway. She had both of her hands, and neither had teeth marks. But that wasn’t what you’d call a good night’s sleep. The wind brought a tree down at the end of the block, and the tree took down a major wire. At 4 p.m., the Detroit Edison workers were just getting started on fixing it.

“What the hell took them so long?” I called to a neighbor, which got me a bunch of glares from the linemen. I keep forgetting that Detroit is a city where blue-collar workers do not feel like second-class citizens. In fact they think, quite correctly, that if it weren’t for their willingness to clamber around on poles and in bucket trucks, we could all sit in the dark for all they care. (Our side of the street didn’t lose power, fortunately.)

Must have been the rocky night that made me so rude. I still can’t believe my subconscious suggested I bite my own child’s hand.

So it was one of those didn’t-sleep days — rattle-y, bump-into-walls-y, get-outraged-by-the-newspapers-y, although obviously some other people got even more outraged. I remember when I went through a nightclub period the same time I had to work at 7-3 shift, and I routinely took my sleep in two chunks — from closing time to 6 a.m. and then from quitting time to dinner or so. I kept this up for weeks with no ill effects. How did I do it? Oh yes, being 23 years old, plus half a pack of Winstons a day. Nicotine, in addition to being a poison, is also a stimulant.

If you’ll excuse me, then, I’m off to read “The Human Stain” and drift off to dreamland. No biting tonight, I hope.

Posted at 10:10 pm in Uncategorized |

17 responses to “Give me your hand, child.”

  1. alex said on September 29, 2005 at 10:49 pm

    Well, Nance, the hailstorm of acorns on my house continues unabated as it has for several weeks, Mariah or not. My drive and yard are literally a field of acorn gravel, and I haven’t a clue what to do about it except keep my vehicle indoors. The Realtors must’ve had one helluva lawn sweeper because it was at this time last year I bought this place and it was squeaky clean. Also lotsa hickory detritus, which I recently found out is why the lawn looks like shit�them nuts is pure poison.

    Oh, but the shagbarks are lovely. These folks didn’t have little kids, obviously, or at least they were old enough by the time the trees were old enough to leave them the hell alone. Amazing to see such shagbark intact anywhere, even in the wild.

    Speaking of nuts, it’s not surprising to hear Republicans refusing to admit their own shit stinks even as they’re finally getting it thrown back at them, stale and rock hard as it is after all these years. Glad to know it’ll finally be happening�without further DeLay, ba-dump-bump.

    Also been enjoying the columns of Carol Marin of the Sun-Times as regards the long-overdue prosecution of the GOP’s brazen scandalousness in my former state of Illinois. (I’d link to it but haven’t a clue how in this screen.) Anyhoo, the Republicans have been keeping the new Dem gov on the defensive with their usual tactics but their name is such filth right now that it hardly matters. The woolly bears seem to be saying it’ll be one nasty winter in the Midwest�and really nasty the following fall in the red states everywhere.

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  2. brian stouder said on September 29, 2005 at 10:57 pm

    I confess I liked the mental picture from the last post, of Madam Telling Tales chatting on the phone, in the shower, glistening in all her glory;

    but today’s image of a disheveled Mama Telling Tales biting extremities off her daughter while in the guest room just sorta’ doused the earlier effect!

    Loved the link. I got through on Pat White’s radio show and went after him yesterday. The guy will NOT let up on attacking New Orleans, all “those people” who live in New Orleans, all the ‘crooked’ local officials who run “the most corrupt city in America” etc etc etc, ad nauseum. I think I tagged him pretty good; the next few callers were not his usual Amen-chorus line for veiled racism

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  3. mary said on September 30, 2005 at 1:38 am

    I don’t know how such things are measured, but on some newscast during the real ugliness of the New Orleans debacle, someone said that Louisiana is known as a very corrupt state, and is the second most corrupt state in the union. Mississippi is the first. Haley Barbour, former chairman of the Republican National Committee, runs the most corrupt state in the union by someone’s standards. Again, I’m shocked.

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  4. Mindy said on September 30, 2005 at 7:48 am

    Put “Paint Your Wagon” at the top of your Do Not See list because watching Clint Eastwood sing is cruel and unusual punishment. It scarred me.

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  5. Dorothy said on September 30, 2005 at 9:02 am

    Your Thursday sounded a bit like my Monday this week. As far as being sleep deprived.

    On Sunday night our exchange student decided to run a bath. I fell asleep hearing the water running, but did not hear him go downstairs and get on the computer. He forgot completely about the bathtub filling. I awoke about 20 minutes later when he remembered what he was doing 20 minutes hence, to a flood and a screaming 15 year old. All of this taking place as my hubby was in a plane on his way to Spain.

    I had to call off work on Monday to do damage assessment and such. The water caused ceiling damage downstairs in several places in the kitchen and family room. Thank God he is covered by a liability policy through Nacel Open Door. I only slept about 2 hours the night before, so I was punch drunk a good bit of the day. I love the kid, he is a nice boy, but this episode more than anything convinces me that hosting a student is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime thing for me.

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  6. Nance said on September 30, 2005 at 9:44 am

    Sometimes an empty nest is the best kind, eh?

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  7. Dorothy said on September 30, 2005 at 10:00 am

    *SIGH* yeah……..

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  8. mary said on September 30, 2005 at 11:38 am

    Fifteen year old boys can be so much fun. Maybe your exchange student needs a friend. I’ll put son Tom on the plane tonight.

    He’s having a less than stellar week himself.


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  9. Lex said on September 30, 2005 at 12:02 pm

    I’ve never heard fire called “Joe,” but in certain parts of the South, syphilis used to be referred to colloquially as “old Joe.” I do not know why, nor do I wish to know.

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  10. mary said on September 30, 2005 at 12:13 pm

    Maybe the song was being coy about what exactly was meant by “fire.” There is that burning sensation during urination, I understand. They can’t exactly come right out and sing about that.

    I always get Paint Your Wagon confused with Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, which has the gayest scene in any musical, ever. The scene where the brothers are dancing around with axes is beyond lavendar.

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  11. Nance said on September 30, 2005 at 12:26 pm

    Well, I never saw either one — although wasn’t there a TV show based on 7B47B? — but I learned a lot from the way their songs were reinterpreted on Merv. I learned everything I know about “dramatic” theatrical lighting, how to dramatically whip a microphone cord, and when to step back to the stool, park one buttock on it and wrap everything up.

    Plus, that everything’s better in a medley! I love you bay-bee, and if it’s quite all right I need you bay-bee to warm the lonely nights…

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  12. mary said on September 30, 2005 at 12:39 pm

    I remember seeing Merv and Neil Sedaka doing a duet on “Laughter in the Rain.” It still haunts me.

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  13. MichaelG said on September 30, 2005 at 1:37 pm

    I know it’s probably not right to air my personal problems in public, but can somebody out there help me? My 27 year old daughter listens to Barry Manilow and Celine Dion. Otherwise she seems to be perfectly alright.

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  14. Nance said on September 30, 2005 at 1:41 pm

    I think that, hidden deep within your daughter, there’s a gay man trying to get out.

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  15. Mindy said on September 30, 2005 at 3:16 pm

    Let’s hope it’s just a phase she’s going through, MichaelG. Tell her you think Celine is foxy and that Barely ManEnough was always one of Grandma’s favorites. Might gross her out.

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  16. MichaelG said on September 30, 2005 at 3:38 pm

    You may have a point, Nance. I won’t bring it up in front of my son-in-law, though. Problem with Celine is that I don’t think she’s foxy. My daughter grew up in San Francisco during the Joe Montana era. Everybody always joked about how Montana and Manilow looked so much alike. I mean, you never saw them together, did you?

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  17. mary said on September 30, 2005 at 4:42 pm

    I’m completely weirded out by the idea of a gay man existing inside a straight woman. I think she just likes songs that change up a key near the end and get louder.

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