I was making dinner last night and fretting about how, when the mother of one of William's friends came to pick her (the friend) up, she (the mother) and I stood in our (Paul's and mine) INCREDIBLY CLUTTERED AND MESSY dining room (messiness marker for reference: extras of the photos we sent out in our Christmas cards, scattered across the floor under the table) and she DEFINITELY saw the room, because WE WERE IN IT. And there was no way she'd think it was some FLUKE, because she has been here probably a dozen times before, and if anything it has looked WORSE on previous occasions, because at least THIS time I picked up the used washcloths and some of the winter outerwear and scraps of paper and barrettes and paperclips and cat kibbles---at least the ones right inside the door---and I also straightened the runner carpet (carpet runner?) which had been akimbo as usual.
So anyway, I was fretting, and I was also kind of praising myself for standing there talking to her like nothing was messy instead of dissolving into fretfulness and drawing her attention via detailed apology to each thing that was messy, and I was reassuring myself by thinking how, really, when someone else's house is messy, I admire them if they brazen it out instead of acting freaked about it as if I were the sort of person who would like them less for it and maybe snicker about it to other people, rather than the sort of person who thinks, "WHEW, her house is messy, maybe we can be friends!" And so I was glad that the nonchalance approach was what I'D done in that situation, in case it would impress that other child's mother the way it impresses me.
So THEN I was thinking how, on the other hand, I also admire it when I go to someone's house and it's really tidy and clean. I'm always impressed, even though I also make a mental note to not let that person see MY house until they love me so much it's too late for them to be shocked, and then they have to instead justify their love of me by redefining what they consider a mark of good character and upbringing.
And they don't have to personally clean it themselves, either: if they hire someone else to clean it for them, I admire their courage (because that involves phone calls AND having someone else in their house AND having someone get all personal with their possessions), and I also admire the sensible idea that we let the professionals do what they do best while we spend our time doing what WE do best---whatever that is.
So THEN I thought, "I seem to be saying I admire EVERYONE'S housecleaning situation, no matter WHAT. Is that possible?" and I thought, "Yes. That seems to be the situation here."
Okay, now I have a bunch of links and stuff to show you, in case you are someone who laments the lack of action in the blogging community on weekends.
First, here's another of those videos Paul finds and blows our household's collective mind with. You will have it stuck in your head AND YOU WILL SAY THANK YOU:
Paul says the guy who sings that song is the same guy who sang that "Peaches" song from a few years ago ("millions of peaches, peaches for free"), and you are very welcome for getting THAT stuck in your head TOO.
Next, The Bloggess on dealing with bullies. It's her usual combination of "making you laugh until you might actually barf" + "actual issue that needs to be addressed" + "something kind of touching that makes you feel all emotional especially because you're all primed for it by the laughing/barfing" + "actual advice for dealing amusingly with troll commenters, which starts the laugh-barf cycle all over again."
Next, Mir on making sure your contract is right before you write for money, lest you find yourself looking at your own book on the bestseller list, but with all the profits going to someone else.
Review blog stuff: GE Ecomagination for a chance to win a light bulb that lasts TWENTY YEARS (and costs FIFTY DOLLARS) (for ONE light bulb) (I am not EVEN kidding). Through February 28.
Over at Milk and Cookies, perhaps you would like to help me choose a travel mug?
Gift ideas for an 8-year-old, part 1 of 2 - I have TWO 8-year-olds to buy for, so I’m going to split it up into two posts. Today will be the things we’re getting for Edward. I dislike saying “Gift id...