On Saturday morning I thought to myself:
“Today I’m not going to harp on things that shouldn’t matter. Like the fact that I tripped on a certain 2nd grader’s filthy backpack on my way to the gym this morning. Twice. I’m also not going to wax on about how much Maya’s been on the iPad lately. And I’m certainly not going to mention Ali’s cables or laptop(s) or socks.”
It was a long thought.
After that long thought, however, I got into it with our contractor who quickly went from my awesome list to my sh#$ list. Which snapped me straight into the bitchy mood that I’d tried so hard to avoid.
It takes so little.
First I went off on Ali for refusing to recycle a stack of restaurant-related magazines, despite the fact that he’s never owned a restaurant and likely will never own a restaurant. This because we’ve established through much research / discussion / self-reflection that 99.9% of restaurants make no money before they inevitably fail within the first year.
Next I channeled my inner Tiger Mom by drilling Maya on her Serena Williams presentation, over and over, until she could recite Serena’s entire life from age 3 to the present in her sleep. Complete with the awkward fact that Serena “Now lives in Florida with her two dogs, where she oversees her clothing line with Nike.”
After that I decided to make homemade waffles (that nobody asked for) so I could complain about how dirty the kitchen is and then about how nobody appreciates my cooking. And after that?
I tried to figure out how people can stand me.
Despite the fact that I can’t read a map and sometimes have to use my fingers to do quick addition (don’t tell Maya) I think I’m a fairly intelligent person. That’s why it continues to amaze me that I cannot stop burning myself with a curling iron.
Yes, I did it again.
It started innocently enough: as I waited patiently for my Japanese straightening appointment, I tried to fix my broken hair by using every hot tool I could find to burn it into submission.
Unlike previous attempts, however, I made sure to put safety first:
- I curled in a well-lit room.
- I curled my hair away from my face.
- I remembered not to complicate things by using the clamp part of the iron.
What I didn’t remember was to get a firm grip on the iron. So of course it fell. On my forehead.
You might be thinking: “Wow Ameena. You’re pretty lucky…you could have been burned really badly!” And yes, I would agree with you. Except that for the last 5 days I’ve been walking around channeling Rudolph because right after the curling iron hit my forehead?
It hit my nose.
On the upside, you wouldn’t believe how many people find their way to my blog by searching the term: “I burned myself with a curling iron.”
I’m thinking a red nose is worth the few additional page views?
On Friday afternoon I did something completely out of the ordinary: I made an effort.
This translated to me putting in my contacts and wearing something other than black. I also changed my earrings, broke out the straightening iron, and even contemplated make up!
(Didn’t follow through with that one but I believe contemplation deserves recognition.)
I did all of this because I figured that instead of defrosting Trader Joe’s Turkey Meatballs or ordering takeout, we might actually go out for dinner. On a Friday night no less!
So after taking Maya to the doctor and Target, after a dropping off books at the library and then picking up milk, Maya and I returned home, excited about the endless possibilities for a dinner beyond my sad repertoire of pasta and omelets.
But then, this:
Ali – Clueless Comment #1: “Your hair looks really dry.”
Me, in my head: How does one respond to this?
Ali – Clueless Comment #2: “It looks like it might break any second.”
Me, in my head: Why thank you Ali. Nothing like a compliment to kick off my Friday evening.
Ali – Clueless Comment #3: “I think you need a better conditioner or something.”
To be honest, I wasn’t really offended as I know this is Ali trying to be “helpful.” Still, I put my glasses back on, took my diamond hoops off, and thanked my lucky stars I wasn’t dumb enough to put on makeup hours earlier. And then I said: “So are you picking up CPK or Cheesecake Factory for dinner tonight?”
And then immediately after that? I made the soonest Japanese straightening appointment I could get.
Thanks to our little flood – and a host of other problems – this past week bordered on ridiculous.
And yet I must pat myself on the back because I actually managed to act like a functioning adult. Translation: I kept my whining to a minimum as I dealt with plumbers, contractors, insurance agents, and water restoration specialists.
I even remained calm:
- when our dishwasher broke on Monday morning,
- when our ice maker froze up (how ironic?),
- when, a few minutes later, our fridge light went out,
- when my husband informed me on Monday morning that he was going on a “business” trip and wouldn’t be back until Thursday,
- when my husband asked if I could pack his bag.
One packed suitcase, a visit from the dishwasher repairman / fridge guy / far too many contractors, and one eye infection later, however, I was about to lose my sh@#.
(As an aside, I realize now that I should have gone into the more lucrative field of plumbing and/or construction instead of finance. I’m an idiot.)
By some miracle, everyone wrapped up for the day on Thursday, at 1:35 pm. Which is when I sat down to enjoy a few minutes of peace and quiet. And exactly 7 minutes later? My husband waltzed through the door, back from his trip.
Can you guess what the first thing he asked me was?
Hint: his question wasn’t related to a kitchen appliance or the fact that my bathroom has no walls and only half of its ceiling.
No, his question was: “What’s cooking?”
And now my perpetual whining makes more sense….
Last week I did a very dumb thing: I asked my husband to transfer clothes from the washing machine to the dryer. What I neglected to tell him was to turn the dryer on.
It was only after the clothes sat in a wet heap for most of the day that I realized something: my husband taking things at face value really isn’t an act.
In addition to the above, I also did two other very dumb things: I decided to have our place repainted and then I tempted fate by blogging that nothing interesting was going on. This meant that on Sunday morning I awoke to a leak coming from my newly painted bathroom ceiling. Which, as time passed, quickly became Niagara Falls.
By the end of Sunday I concluded that it’s because I can’t keep my big mouth shut – or my typing fingers still – that I spent the entire day dodging rusty water and placing buckets and towels just so.
Incidentally, I also spent the majority of the day writing check after check to people who happily reminded me of the fact that we were subject to a Sunday time-and-a-half rate. Because obviously I can control the timing of leaks in my ceiling.
Despite all of this, there was still no hot water when the plumbers and water restoration specialists left – victorious and wealthy – after 10 hours. And neither Ali nor I could figure out why.
But two icy cold showers and a visit from our building engineer later, here’s what I learned: My husband followed the plumber’s instructions on how to work the water heater perfectly. But the plumber failed to mention that Ali actually needed to flip on the POWER switch.
This face value thing? It’s no joke.
Aside from taking a couple of stabs at making something edible for dinner, fighting with Maya about just about everything, and having our entire condo repainted, very little has happened since my last post.
With nothing interesting to blog about, I had no choice but to hit up Ali for topics.
Me: “Did you do anything random this week that I can write about?”
Ali: “I can’t think of anything.”
Me: “Not sure how that’s possible? You must have said something offensive?”
Ali: “I doubt it – I was in Phoenix half the week.”
Me: “Oh. True. Well that explains it.”
It’s not like we didn’t talk while Ali was in Phoenix. Quite the opposite actually. He called us on Face Time and Skype. He sent us emails, texts, and Lync messages.
Despite the barrage of communication, however, we actually managed to converse like normal people. Translation: we discussed mundane things like how our day went with no sarcasm (me), no passive-aggressive dry cleaning messages (Ali), and no whining (Maya) in sight.
So this particular post is about absolutely nothing due to the fact that Ali was traveling. And then we were all too nice to each other.
Here’s hoping that my next post is a little more interesting.
Things got ugly with my mom this week, and I’m not exaggerating.
I knew it was coming though…the writing was on the wall. Because in addition to my mom coming home from New York (which always puts her in a bad mood), she’s been engrossed in “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother“ every night.
And to make matters worse? I got an “F” on my math test.
Well technically, I didn’t get an “F,” I got a “1.” This is because some important person did a study on how number grades are less harsh than letter grades, and since it’s super important to protect my delicate psyche, they did away with letter grades!
Cool, huh? So really, my mom was kind of lying when she put on her saddest expression and told everyone who would listen, “I can’t believe Maya got her first “F! And she’s just 8.”
But I was smart enough not to bring THAT up.
There was no time anyway because my mom was already doing damage control. She took away my TV time, cancelled all my play dates, and even told me I couldn’t have dessert! She did this last thing even though I heard her lecture my dad last week about how he should never use food as a reward or a punishment because that may lead to serious problems when I’m older.
See? I had my listening ears on. Just like she always tells me I should. I guess my dad didn’t though, because he didn’t point out her hypocrisy. Or maybe he was just scared to?
Anyway, back to my bad grade. So the thing is that I don’t really care if I can answer 30 addition problems in 60 seconds. My dad agrees. I know this because I heard him tell my mom, “My parents never got mad at me for my grades and look at how I turned out.”
My mom nodded like she cared but I’m pretty sure she disregarded my dad’s opinion like she usually does. She was too busy planning her strategy, which I’m sure incorporates Tiger Mom’s theory that it’s not a parent’s job to make sure their kid likes them, it’s their job to make them work HARD.
So the good news is that school is over in exactly two months. The bad news? It’s going to be a rough two months with Tiger Mom hovering. Wish me luck.