The Way Things Are






"Gets by with as little work as she can.”
2006-07-14, 2:21 p.m.

This is what I look for in a political blog entry, and it’s why I read Skot: for his political blogging, and the movie reviews. I just thought I’d share. That’s for all of you who complain CONSTANTLY that I never do anything for you. Oh wait. That’s…that’s not you. That’s the other people.


We went to our friend’s birthday party the other night, a kind of casual, thrown-together affair at the golf course clubhouse after 18 holes. He really appreciated his sympathy card, by the way. I ended up editing it even further to read; “You’re only as old as you look feel ACT.” This is entirely appropriate because he 1. looks old because he has a whole head of white hair at 46 (and is also a grandfather, so we delight in calling him “Grandpa”) 2. spent a year recovering from back surgery and 3. acts like a 19-year-old in spite of the bad back and the white hair and the grandfatherly status.

But anyway, as we clamber past my digression, I sat and talked with a couple of friends who have teenage daughters. One of the teenage daughters has been diagnosed with a mild case of ADD (ADHD without the hyperactive component), and the other one who might ought to be tested, but her mother is a teacher and she doesn’t want her daughter encumbered within the school system with a label. Bad reasoning, I know. The mom wasn’t there, or we might have found my foot encumbered within her ass.

But it was funny, listening to my two friends talk about their ADD daughters. Here are things they said:

“She’s really smart – she tests well. But she puts the least amount of work possible into her assignments. Gets by with as little work as she can.”

“She doesn’t have the hyperactive component – in fact, she barely ever moves.”

“She’s just not motivated.”

“She doesn’t have the math gene. She is off the charts in verbal and language, but math is a language she doesn’t speak.”

“She’s very disorganized. She gets distracted so easily.”

“She’s such a good girl. Such a sweet, good girl. I don’t have to worry about her getting into trouble. Now, her sister--!” (Hi EB)

“I don’t know what she’s going to do when she gets into college and I’m not there to tutor her every night.”

I wanted to keep saying, “Me, too! I’m ADD with no hyperactive component whatsoever! I test magnificently! I’m only motivated when it’s something I really want to do! I don’t have a math gene, but I want one with all my heart and soul and gizzard! When she gets into college, she’ll coast along like she always has, until it all crashes down on her and she fails out a semester, and she realizes that she’s really going to have to work to get out of there, and then she will!”

I didn’t say any of that, because I really didn’t want to sit there and be identifying more with their teenage daughters than with their parents.

It’s a pretty big accomplishment for me to have kept my mouth shut, though. I kept wanting to say “Me too! Me too!” but I was too embarrassed to. I also don’t want my middle-aged friends to identify ME more with their daughters than they do with themselves, if you know wuddeye mean, and I


If it’s summer, and it’s Thursday, then it’s time for the free music in the park. Our friend’s band played again, and they have a rather limited portfolio, i.e. they play the exact same set every time they play, so here comes that song: “THERE ain’t no good guy, THERE ain’t no bad guy…” and I said to DW “Here’s the song that made you cry last year after we argued about park rangers.”

He denied the whole thing. “That’s just like a woman! You’re making it all up. ‘Do you remember this?’ NO. No, I do not.”

I patted him on the hand, and told him let’s not fight again – I didn’t want any more of his tears to mar our date night.

“Stop touching me!” he replied. Of course, in response, I put my hands right up in his face, and said “I’m not touching youuuuu! I’m not touching youuuu! I’m not touching youuuuu!”

Good times. You wish you could date us, don’t you?


Here’s the green shirt I bought at Target on Tuesday, when I made a run for full-coverage underpinnings and ended up with shirts, panties, and pajamas. See? It’s green, and it makes me smile a big, goofy smile.


I’m going to eat lunch with my cousin today, and when I get back, I’ll report back to you.


I’m back, and my cousin still weighs in the low 80s. What? I didn’t report to you before on my incredible shrinking cousin? Anorexia/bulimia in high school and college (she would come stay with me for the weekend occasionally when she was in college, and I don’t know why I would bother to barbecue chicken and make homemade pizza and whatnot. I’d go in the bathroom later in the evening and be confronted with irrefutable evidence that somebody had recently puked. Why bother?), and for the past six or eight years, just really very thin. Thin like “Wow, that’s a really tiny girl.” She’s like 4’11”.

I hadn’t seen her in a couple of years, and just a few weeks ago, we realized we are living in essentially the same town, so we went to lunch, and she told me that she had lost something like 20 pounds due to a wicked case of GERD. I’m no GERD expert – I’m just a Googler – but I see that GERD can cause excessive vomiting in children, and well, she looks like a child, so I guess I can buy it. She said there was a period of several months when she couldn’t keep food down before she was diagnosed.

Anyway, now my 29-year-old 4’11” cousin weighs 83 pounds. I don’t know what to make of it. When we go to lunch, she eats as much as I do. Who knows what she does with it once she’s back at her office. At our first lunch, she told me she’s trying to gain weight – that she looks terrible in a swimsuit and cannot find clothes to fit – and I told her to stick with me. We’d get her all fixed up with the Laura Way of Eating.

How frightening for her. She says she usually weighs between 95 and 100 – can you imagine her looking at me and thinking “Laura weighs 30 pounds more than I do – I canNOT subscribe to the Laura Way of Eating.”

I like her, though. She’s funny, she’s smart, and she’s really pretty. In fact, you know when you see those photos of shockingly thin celebrities like Keira Knightly and Nicole Richey and Kate Bosworth, and somehow with the really nice clothes and the good looks, they can make skeletal look like it’s going to all be okay? That’s my cousin. I’m twice as wide as her (I checked us out as we walked up to the glass doors of EZ’s). She dresses NICE, although I would have no idea where she gets grown-up looking clothes to fit her, and I felt like a frumpy cow walking in next to her.

Ah well. I’m healthy.

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