Sunday, June 28, 2009

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Dancing With Tears in my Eyes

That is not only NOT my favorite Ultravox song, but it sounds much sadder than I feel right now. It was just the phrase that came to mind when I looked back on my day. It was a long one--I had to pack for everyone for our two-week vacation while also fighting with the kids and breaking up their screeching fights with each other. By (their) bedtime, I was wiped out and aggravated with both of 'em. Then I looked at Adinah's Fathers' Day gift, which she slipped to me sometime this morning. It's this drawing of four stars. She told me the tiniest star is V., the small one is her, the larger fancy one is Anette, and the biggest star is me.

Gulp. Blink. Turn on the waterworks.

(We'll be on a beach in Sardinia for two weeks so I can't promise a post for awhile......but you'll hear all about it when we come home!)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Robot Love

Last night I did it again. The moment Anette said she would stay home with the kids so I could go out, I scuttled over to the English language cinema to pay good Euros for a fine American film. No, wait, actually it was Terminator Salvation.

Why am I like this? I've loved science fiction movies since I was in short pants. Lately I've even been reading it, in an anthology of classic sci-fi short stories by Robert Heinlein, Jack Williamson and others. (It's pretty fun, though, of course, goofy.)

Terminator Salvation was about what one might expect from a director who started out directing the music videos of Smashmouth. Long on looks, short on logic and totally unreliant on stuff like dramatic tension or good ideas. I did like the noises that the really big robots made when they was squashing peoples, though.

Science fiction doesn't seem to have changed much since the stories I'm reading from the nineteen-forties. It's still primarily concerned with stories about what it means to be human. I mean, I know Terminator Salvation isn't exactly the cutting edge of the form, and I know some authors deal with subjects besides robots. But apparently it's still acceptable to have a hero rage at the heavens, "They want us to be machines! But men aren't machines!"

It just seemed fresher a hundred and fify years ago when Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Turnabout... fair play, I suppose. Just eight days after I returned from the US, Anette has gone and left me alone with the kids for her own trip to New York City. This morning as I sat on the edge of Deanie's bed, bleary-eyed and gulping coffee, daughter number one was counting the cats on daughter number two's pajama top. "Look, V: one-Papa! Two-Adinah! Three-V.!"

I said, "Hey, where's the fourth cat-Anette?"

Adinah looked at me, looked back at V.'s pajama top, then said, "There's only three cats here."

And so there are.

Last night was a typical "While the cat's away" night. I fixed a quick (but healthy!) dinner, put the kids in the tub and washed their hair, then got them into bed (without a protest!) Then I:

1) Cleaned up.

2) Had a smoke.

3) Listened to loud music, in this case some pretty misogynistic, but funky Nigerian high-life, and the ancient back-country warblings of the Carter Family. I can always listen to music with so much more concentration when I'm alone. And like the Dalai Lama says, everyone needs to spend a little time alone every day.

4) Searched YouTUbe for hits corresponding to the phrase "classic science fiction," and then watched a handful of the 80-100 results.
I was drinking red wine and eating popcorn, and even that didn't help. Most of the clips were bad tv and student film dreck. Oh well, so much for the infinite wonders of cyberspace.

What's on the program for TONIGHT? Methinks a pizza party, then after the girls' bedtime...hardcore techno, hardcore hard rock, hardcore blogging and hardcore laundry folding. Yo, YO, YO!!!