Monday, January 7, 2008

Waka Laka time

From an email dated December 4, 2007:

... my kids are always asking me: "Do you find it funny when I say the words .... 'WAKA LAKA'!" ... Now you know why I roll on the floor laughing in response.

... some silliness to match what I'm doing here at work ...

Loves Dougs

and then:

Le Shaque d'amour

... oh, yes! I did go there. I think I've found my new favorite music video.

I've packed my juke-box money and am looking for glitter on the highway.

... Okay, I'm done. Really.

Doug, once again.

... and then from an email dated October 31, 2007:

I have finally found my philosophical centre

... pronounced with a frenchy-nasalised 'san-TRrr'

my new title: `pataphysicist



Waka Laka's a thing to play forever
Just to be together (Just to be together)
Waka Laka's a place to be forever
Waka Laka love and fantasy

(Waka Laka, Waka Laka... etc.)

See Waka Laka when you need a flight of fantasy (Fantasy)
Ecstasy (Ecstasy)
Rhapsody (Rhapsody)
See Waka Laka when you want a love so tenderness (Tenderness)
Waka Laka make you fly

See Waka Laka when you're going to feel so sad and blue (eh?)
Just for you (oh yeah!)
Never blue
See Waka Laka and a funny bunny'll free your life
Now it's Waka Laka time

I wanna live (I wanna live)
A bright new day (A bright new day)
Go far away (Go far away)
To Waka Laka place
A Waka time (A Waka time)
To feel so fine (To feel so fine)
A Waka Laka flight

Waka Laka's a thing to play forever
Just to be together (Just to be together)
Waka Laka's so magical and tender
Musical and wonder fantasy

Waka Laka's a never ending story
Glory, glory, glory (Glory, glory, glory)
Waka Laka's a place to be forever
Waka Laka love and,
Waka Laka love and,
Waka Laka love and fantasy

Juxtaposition and Irony

Just a free association -- 'cause that's what I'm a bundle of.

"Lina Lamont" -- the platinum blond in "Singin' in the Rain."
"Marilyn Monroe" -- the platinum blond in "There's No Business Like Show Business"

Two "different" girls admired because they are fameous and nothing else. (The quote that sticks out in my mind from "There's No..." as "Marilyn" does a "song and dance" number (she stands in place while everyone else sings and dances around her ... just as Frank "Swoon"atra did in "Guys and Dolls"): "Well isn't it obvious why anyone would fall for her?" -- My answer: "Um, no." -- and this line was delivered by Ethel Merman to Donald O'Connor, both of whom could barely keep their eyes from rolling as it was being said).

I just wish "Singin' in the Rain" came after "There's No ...", but I suppose that would have made the irony too obvious.

Irony, n., as defined by Testaments Betrayed (this, along with this essay, should be required reading by all philosophers, that is to say, by everybody (because, after all, everybody should be asking themselves "why are we here?", shouldn't they? as they are living their lives)), is saying something with complete sincerity, while living the complete contradiction. Just as, recently, Jodie Foster lamblasted "Sin City" for its gratuitous violence towards children. Her statement caused quite a stir of righteous indignation. All I can think, as I read that piece, was what Milan Kundera would say, barely suppressing the rolling of the eyes: "Um, hello?" (which is French (because he's Czech, don't you know) for "... irony, anyone?")

Putting "Marilyn Monroe" in the light of "Lina Lamont" makes me wonder why anyone would ever desire to imitate this chimera (caveat link-follower: do yourself a favor, mute your computer) ... oh, wait; nevermind.

Thethought for the day:
 Algernon Moncrieff:Cecily is the sweetest, prettiest girl in the world; I care not a fig for her societal prospects.
 Lady Bracknell:Never mock society, Algy; only those who can't get in do that.

It's the most wonderful time of the year ...

... to be fired!

We were sitting around tea, our family and EM's god-family, to celebrate EM's baptism day when I embarrassed EM's god-mother with that response to her question of how my work was going.

Mean of me, I know, but actually, as it turns out, this is the best time to be fired. The last 10 christmasses I've been on the job at work (or, in one case, I wasn't at work because I was in the hospital), so I finally got to experience a Christmas at home. Great fun!

And, also, as we've had our share of colds, being at home has allowed me to ease my cara spoza's burden of motherhood. My doing the dishes, cooking, and taking out the trash sure help a wee bit, especially when coughing and sniffling of the brood has kept up Mama all night.

But what's really, um, great, is EM's appendix decided to give out this Sunday. A mad dash to the Emergency Room, followed by an operation that day (the lab technician, looking at the ultrasound: "Yep, I'll call the doctor." The doctor, looking at the ultrasound: "Yep" followed by surgery). Diane took care of EM while I held up the household with Li'l Iz in tow ("I want Mama! *sniff* *sniff*"). Imagine how hard it would be on Diane if I had been in West Chester or Chicago! shudders

Like I said -- it's the most wonderful time of the year ...

... to be home, helping as pater familias

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Family Beds

Many families have a family bed, that is, a bed for the whole family. Ours does, as well. A distinctive facet of this particular family is that we have "family beds" (plural). This is what plays out in practice. EM comes downstairs to my office to request I read her a bed-time story ("The Miracle of Jonathan Toomey", of course, for she gets no greater pleasure than when she growls "pish-posh" to Christmas, whistling and the pride and happiness of cows and sheep, respectively). So, we clamber into EM's bed (EM: Papa, you lie next to the cold wall. Me: yes) as I begin to read her this book, L'il Iz skips into the room with the big book Mama has just read her ("Father Loves Me"), requesting I read that next.

Well, of course, she clambers up into EM's bed (family bed #1) to hear the rest of the Jonathan Toomey story ("That's pish-posh!"). But a fit of coughing from the little one (this being cold relapse #3 for her, making this her fourth or fifth cold, I lose count) stops the reading.

Me: Isabel, do you need to drink water?
L'il Iz: *cough* *cough* *cough*
EM: Yes, she does, Papa; I will get it.

EM then grabs the books to move them aside, but in so doing, she hits Isabel in the face, hard, with them as she swings them toward safe-keeping.

A shocked look of hurt and surprise from the little one is followed by a stern scolding from the pater familias, but the scolding only made the already heart-broken EM a complete wreck.

My children are such children.

It turns out that L'il Iz gets the (product placement alert) Disani for me to open while EM runs off to Mama in the big bed (family bed #2) for comfort hugs. She also absconds the Toomey book (hey!), so I read L'il Iz her own book, after all, in her own, rail-guarded bed (family bed #3).

Mission completed (book read), Isabel requests "My First Bible" to read on her own as I go to the big bed (family bed #2). EM is scootched tightly against her mother as she is read Jonathan Toomey. When she sees her stern Papa's entrance, she scootches even more tightly.

Diane's inquisitive look earns my explanation of the events (as EM's was rather clouded by emotion ... mine, of course, were entirely dispassionate and objective) which satisfies her (she was concerned that the act was intentional). So, after I read EM "Father Loves Me", she comes out from her shell enough to request I (re)read Jonathan Toomey ("but I say 'pish-posh', okay, Papa?" Okay.) And, as I read, who should come in but Isabel Marie? Who, indeed?

So now we have everyone on the bed except for Mr. Darcy, who is most empathetically NOT invited by certain members of the family. Diane remarks: "Notice a certain air of calm when we read [as opposed to watching a movie]?" When I get to the part of why Jonathan Toomey is called Mr. Gloomy, she askes: "Are you affected?" Hm, let me think about that question: his wife and baby die within three days and so he travels until his tears stop. As pater familias would I possibly feel a chord of sympathy for the travails of this modern-day Job?

Diane eventually brings the now sleeping Iz (my Jonathan Toomey reading is that gripping!) to sleep with her on her own rail-guarded bed (I'm beginning to lose count of the permutations, here) as I sleep with EM on the big bed.

At some eventual later time, Diane returns to the big bed where the three of us now sleep, but wait. We soon have a fourth (no, not Mr. Darcy) because ...

Interlude: Mr. Darcy /did/ use to rest on the big bed. He would lie on the very edge of the bed, but never, ever fall off. That is, until one day when he woke up yawned and stretched ... *crash*

Diane: Whaaa? Let me see that again! as she deviously places Mr. Darcy on the edge of the bed.

Mr. Darcy is not a cat to comply with any best-laid plans decides to move to the much safer center of the bed.

... we were all awakened by a loud *crash* followed by the wail of a (it turns out) 4-year-old banshee. Yes, Isabel had once again rejoined the family bed, but apparently did not scootch in enough to compensate for her tossing and turning. It was okay though: the floor broke her fall.

Well, Diane escorted the examined child back to family bed #3 and we carried out (through snores galore) another night in our continuing adventure of the family saga.