November 23, 2006

A Wodehouse thought for the day

I give you this, to ponder on during this most wholesome holiday:

South Kensington . . . where sin stalks naked through the dark alleys and only might is right.

Service With a Smile, 1962

I really can't say why I find this one so funny. But I do. Maybe you just have to know South Ken.

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November 21, 2006

Lies, etc.

The Girl Child lied to us last night. Not the end of the world, you know. Kids lie. Most people lie. However, I came down on her with great firmness to nip this problem in the bud. As I explained to her, a lie is the death of trust. If I cannot trust her, it will be just horrible. Besides, we cannot let her get away with lying now, when she isn’t quite six, because she was already showing flashes of brilliance in her lie last night. Heck, she could go pro one day.

Here’s what happened: she wrote her name on the fabric of the seat of one of the kitchen chairs.

Upon confronting her, here was her outstanding lie: “I don’t think that I wrote that. It doesn’t even look like my handwriting.” Damn, isn’t that great? She didn’t deny writing it just said she was uncertain. Then she gave supporting proof – the name did not resemble her handwriting. Note, she didn’t say that it wasn’t her handwriting; just that it didn’t look like it. It was subtlety on subtlety. Good one.

Just the same, we cannot let that continue. I explained to her that she was in more trouble for lying to me than she was for the graffiti.

* * *

I might as well share one other happening this weekend to show how the natives are getting restless, how rebellion is breaking out all over the house. The Viking Bride asked the Boy Child, 3.5, to clean up his toys. He thought for a moment, looked at her, and replied: “Ain’t happening”.

She laughed. Me, too. Almost as hard as when we were driving to the playground on Sunday and I spotted a Model-T driving along the Post Road. I pointed it out to the kids and the Girl Child, swiftly echoed by the Boy Child, exclaimed: “Sweeeeet”.

Finally, yesterday morning, the Baby awoke before the Viking Bride was prepared for him to wake and the Girl Child and the Boy Child were also up. GC, after asking for permission, went into the Baby’s room where the Viking Bride found her holding a book up over the crib so the Baby could see the pictures while she went over all the colors with him. I gather it was very cute.

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November 17, 2006

Breast cancer operation a success, we think

Thank you all for your kind comments and supportive emails. I've read everything, be assured, even if I have not had the time to reply or respond.

I have not felt much like writing this week, truth be told.

My mom's surgery was a complete success, or so we have been informed. She is cancer free at this point and must undergo chemo as a prophylactic measure.

Monday was a long day. I spent most of it with my father who was and remains a bit of a basket case. We took a lot of walks around the grounds while my mother was under the knife. He told me that he did not know what he would do, how he would live, without her, that they had grown up together. I was a little taken aback because, well, my dad, well, let's just say I have never heard him speak this way about my mother. He also reflected on the relationship he has with my sister and the relationship he had with my now deceased maternal grandfather, who he says he knew for a longer time than he did his own father. We talked about my uncles and the family business we are trying to run. It was a long day, as I said.

I got to spend an hour and a half alone with my mother, chatting, after she came up from recovery. She tolerated the procedure remarkably well.

Now, of course, her spirits are a bit low as she says she is mourning the loss of her body part. I take a contrary view. I have told her that we should be celebrating the gain not mourning a loss, that she now has a second shot at life. I keep trying to convince her of this.

When Tuesday came, I was drained and exhausted. I had to stay late in the City for a Board of Directors' meeting. Of course, the train broke down on the way home.

Wednesday, still exhausted. My mom is released from the hospital, though. We had the Girl Child's parent-teacher conference. She is a "delight; an adept and rapid learner". We learn, on Thursday, that after the conference, the teacher's husband died that night.

Wednesday, I also learn that I have become a focal point of controversy at the Club where I have been a member for some 15 years and which I love very much. That is a shock. The support I have received is overwhelming and the critics, who went way too far, are on the short end of an investigation which likely will result in the termination of their membership for failing to act like gentlemen. Upsetting but uplifting as people have flocked to my defense.

Thursday, what about Thursday? Oh yeah, that was cool. I had a tour of an architectural masterpiece from the CEO of the Fortune 100 corporation headquartered in the building. Then the CEO and I had a private lunch in his private dining room. That was an interesting experience.

And now Friday and I am happy to look forward to a weekend with my family as I recover from my attempt to run for 30 minutes on the treadmill today to burn out some of the stress I am feeling. Running is not a good idea for your knees; unless you are being chased.

Pax tibi!

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November 10, 2006

Breast cancer update

My mother has been advised that the tumor was larger than expected. She is scheduled to have her breast surgically removed on Monday. This was decided last night.

I am having concentration problems today. Somehow, the question of whether a claim relates back for the purposes of avoiding a statute of limitation issue is hard to concentrate on.

Thank you for all your comments. I have not felt much like blogging of late but have appreciated very much all of your comments.

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The wonderful mint julep

As my thoughts turn southerly, as the days grow colder, I remember fondly my time living in New Orleans where I quaffed more than my fair share of mint juleps. PG Wodehouse, in 1929, had this to say about that lovely drink:

"Insidious things. They creep up to you like a baby sister and slide their little hands into yours, and the next thing you know the judge is telling you to pay the clerk of the court fifty dollars." (from Fish Preferred).

I've always liked that description and thought you might enjoy it, too.

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November 03, 2006

Still, there i sroom for hope

I took the day off today to read to my son's preschool class and to visit my mother who was in the hospital to have a lump removed from her breast. The doctor thought that she was in stage zero breast cancer; stage zero really being pre-cancer. She was not, as it turns out. One of the lymph nodes was involved. This means that instead of stage zero, she jumps to stage two. Mortality rates change and treatment becomes very different.

Still, there is room for hope. And still, I will hope.

Her mother, my grandmother, died of breast cancer when she was just 59, you see.

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November 01, 2006

Today is my birthday

I am not feeling greatly celebratory but I have friends who are not prepared to accept that. My college room mate is taking me out for a big lunch. Other people have been ringing me at work to send their best wishes and I have gotten a number of emails. Of course, I did have to remind my father when we spoke this morning to wish me a happy birthday. That is simply par for the course from the man who bought my mother a St. Patrick's Day card for Valentine's Day one year.

I am going to take myself off after lunch and buy myself a happy birthday tie and a very nice half bottle of something yummy to drink on the train on the way home tonight.

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