Sunday, June 15, 2008

kramer vs. kramer

What a perfect movie to watch on Father's Day! Apart from the really sad parts anyway. I saw the movie years ago and loved it, but watching it this time, I paid more attention to the subtleties of the relationship between Ted and Joanne. It's a perfect movie.

Some of my favorite parts are the interactions between Ted and his single female neighbor, Margaret. They swap stories since they're both abandoned spouses and if it was a modern day movie, they would have fallen in love. Instead they support one another. In the park when she talks about how hard it was to get divorced, he touches her face in a way that's not sexual or romantic, but you can tell it had been awhile since anyone showed her tenderness.

I think it's easy to hate Joanne in this, but I just felt sorry for her. I can understand feeling like you have no identity outside of your family and I can understand feeling that if you weren't totally fulfilled by your child and husband then something must be wrong with you.

What I love about the movie though is even though he is so angry at her for coming back suddenly and interrupting the life he has created with his son, there is still so much between them. So much connectedness. The scene in the courtroom when the mean lawyer yells at her and asks her if she's ruined the most important relationship in her life, the one with her husband, she looks over at Ted and he smiles at her and shakes his head and mouths, "No, you didn't." And she smiles wryly back and answers yes.

And the scenes with Billy and Ted? Forget it. The way Ted is so careful not to vilify her and explains that Billy is going to live with his mom. And Billy starts crying and asks, "If you get lonesome will you call me, Daddy?"

I've seen so many kids for counseling who are a product of divorced parents and it is amazing how protective they are of each parent. So careful not to hurt anyone's feelings or show a preference to either parent. Even if a parent was neglectful or abusive, they are almost afraid to be angry about it. One 7 year old client said in a moment of extraordinary clarity, "I don't have a a good time at my dad's house and it's not fun, but it makes me feel bad that he doesn't get to see us very much, so I still go over there." I spend alot of time convincing kids that's it's normal to be angry at being put in that situation and counseling is a time to get it out. This may not be the life you wanted or deserve, but it can still be a great life.

And alot of time the kids teach me the same thing.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Backyard Fireworks

Americans have a special bond with fireworks. Perhaps it has to do with our national anthem having that bit about "rockets red glare and bombs bursting in air."

No other town epitomizes our countries love of fireworks more than Joplin, MO. I would estimate that they have one of the highest ratio of fireworks stands/stores to people in the country. You can also buy hard liquor at Wal-Mart day or night.

I lived there for about 3 years and I will never forget the first 4th of July I spent there. I didn't know anybody so I decided to stay in. Shortly after dark all hell broke loose. I went outside and it sounded like WWIII, but it was hundreds of individual fireworks displays shot off right from people's front yards and driveways. It was amazing. Every direction you looked there were rockets and showers and shells lighting up the sky. And since it was a nearly windless night, there was a thick cloud of fireworks smoke hanging over the town like fog.

My last 4th of July in Joplin Benay came up to visit. I decided to finally get in on the action and I bought a bunch of fireworks from my co-worker's daughter who was selling them as a fundraiser. (move over world's best chocolate and girl scout cookies, who wants those when we can buy explosives) They had names like "The Big One" "Death From Above" and "Run Hadji Run"(the best of the bunch BTW)

It took us almost 40 minutes to shoot them all off. It was amazing. I don't have a whole lot of fond memories from my Joplin days, but that 4th of July with Benay is definitely one of them.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

over it

Or should I say, over her? And by her I mean Katherine Heigl. She withdrew her name from the list of Emmy contenders because she does not feel she was given material worthy of an Emmy this season on Grey's. She's also trying to get out of her Grey's contract so she can focus on her movie career.

Honey, just because you got lucky with Knocked Up and 27 Dresses doesn't mean you're the shit. Why don't you ask David Caruso how that worked out? I think that career move has only worked for George Clooney.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Foss' Favorite Faces

Friday, June 6, 2008

amazing births

Original source here.

These are incredible stories.

This baby had a large tumor growing out of her tailbone. So, when the baby was 6 months old they took the fetus out, removed the tumor, put the baby BACK IN, and she arrived 10 weeks later. She was born twice.

Three of these babies are identical triplets. There are fewer than 100 documented cases of identical triplets plus one. I feel kinda sorry for the odd one out.

This girl delivered her baby at home in the shower. Then she jogged 4 blocks to the hospital with the baby still attached by the umbilical cord. Think someone was trying to hide being pregnant?

This one is my favorite. This baby is a badass. Her mother delivered while she was going to the bathroom on a TRAIN. Mom passed out, baby fell through the toilet and onto the tracks! They found her TWO HOURS later. Alive. She only weighed 3.22 pounds.

This cool lady gave birth to her twin GRANDchildren. She was a surrogate for her daughter. Oh and she was 51. You know, my mom's turning 51 soon....

This lady gave birth to her SECOND set of TRIPLETS last year. The odds of this are 1 in 64 million.

This sweet baby was born weighing only 10 ounces.

This big, old, honking baby was born weighing SIXTEEN POUNDS.

This lady had quadruplets, three years after having triplets. As Izzie says on Grey's, "You really gotta read the fine print on those fertility drugs."

This 62 year old woman just gave birth to her 12th child. At the time of his birth, she already had 20 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. It would be pretty wild to be present at the birth of your great uncle.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

funny husband quote

While watching an elderly man buy pot on an episode of Weeds...

Nick: That guy always plays an old man in movies and tv.

storm chasers

Or rather...being chased by storms.

You would not believe the night we just had. We were out driving late (around 9:00pm) to get dinner because we were too engrossed in Weeds Season 3 to get anything earlier. So we head out not really knowing where to go. Let me just explain to you how crazy the night was in bullet points because I don't want to forget anything:

  • The night was hot and windy and you could tell the sky was about to open any second.
  • A homeless guy came out of nowhere pushing a shopping cart and carrying a broomstick (anyone read The Road?)
  • We were driving on the highway and lightning struck thisclose to us.
  • We saw 2 transformers blow up RIGHT IN FRONT OF OUR CAR. The most blinding light you've ever seen.
  • Some of the sparks from the explosion showered onto our car.
  • There is construction on our exit to get home and the orange barrels were scattered all over BOTH lanes on the exit ramp.
  • Nick had to drive like he was taking a stunt driving course. On my bald tires. He did brilliantly.
I gotta go. Nick's making me sleep on the floor so the lightning can't strike the metal springs in our mattress and melt us to the bed.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Faces I Love

I stole this idea from my new favorite blog, The Sheila Variations.
Expect many more posts similar to this. I'm making Nick do one too.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

pet peeves, of the grammar sort

I WAS going to post a blog about the Sex and the City movie, but Nick said that everyone will be posting about it and that's boring and predictable. So blame him if you wanted a review of the movie. It's coming later this week though.

Instead, this blog will be about some of my own personal pet peeves regarding poor grammar. I read alot of blogs and I come across alot of misspelled words and incorrect grammar. Let me preface this by saying, I do not claim to use perfect grammar. In fact, by spending most of my time speaking to children I come up with some crazy sentences.

Here are my top ten pet peeves:

1. When people say Nick's and I's instead of Nick's and my. Nick's and I's party was really fun. Ouch.
2. Conversate, instead of converse. I personally haven't heard anyone say this, but my dad says his students use it all the time in class and it drives him nuts.
3. Dieying, instead of dying. I'm dieing to see Sex and the City this weekend. Nope, not a word.
4. Your-You're. I am amazed by how many people misuse this. People of all ages and educational backgrounds.
5. Literally, it makes me want to jump off a cliff when people use this word figuratively.
6. FonT ThAt LoOkS LiKe ThIs literally makes me hate the person that used it. You heard me.
7. Too many exclamation points!!!!!!!!!!! Or question marks????????????????????
8. Yeah-Yea. Yeah is a casual way of saying yes. Yea is another way of saying yay!
9. Sister-in-laws vs. Sisters-in-law. Since I now have 2 sisters-in-law, I have to make sure I am saying it the right way.
10. Inappropriate quotation "marks". Look at this website for more instances like these. They'll make you cringe.

I realize that by typing this I open myself up to criticism and I'm okay with that. Even if this is riddled with mistakes in grammar, I can sleep at night knowing I'm doing my best to keep learning how to improve my own written words. By criticizing others.