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maura @ 9:41 pm

I didn’t ride my scooter to work all last week, because the week before I took a spill. I know, I know, why didn’t I tell you, internets? Well, I was (understandably, I think) embarrassed: as I keep saying, the only thing dorkier than an old lady in an orange helmet riding a kick scooter is the same eating it on the broken pavement near the Atlantic Center. Duh. It wasn’t the end of the world — a couple of small scrapes and a bruised shoulder and a chunk out of one hand, and thankfully the worst of it is on my left side (I’m right handed).

With my (minor) injuries I’ve been walking to work the past week or so. It’s funny how sloooooow it seems to me now when I walk to work. It only takes 40-ish minutes, but it’s easily twice the time it takes me to scoot. (Though I’m pretty sure that walking is better exercise, even with the uphill scoot home.) I do listen to podcasts or music during the walk, which I can’t do when I scoot, but it still seems long and a little boring.

Until I get to the art, that is. Then things get more interesting. You may have seen this story in the Times last week about the rise of pop-up art galleries in vacant storefronts around the city. I know it’s not a good thing to have vacant storefronts, but I have to admit that I vastly prefer the art.

I actually walk by two of the galleries mentioned in the Times piece. The first is a long stretch of storefronts with a ton of space, and lots of interesting sculpture and paintings inside. Right next door is an Applebee’s* which just increases the artistic tension, as far as I’m concerned. The Kenny Scharf mural (photo in the Times) is there, and a weird industrial chunky sculpture that’s all wood and oil drums and pipes and water. There’s also the melting waffle from the plaza near my work! I was so glad to see it — it disappeared from the plaza a few weeks ago and I’ve missed it.

* I’ll never get used to this Applebee’s being there. It’s so incongruous.

The second set of gallery spaces is smaller but also pretty cool. There are a couple of pieces with an anti-consumerist bent, which I totally groove on. It’s also nice that the old store signs were left above each storefront; the 1 Hr Photo, Check Cashing and Taco Rico signs really add to the effect. One of my favorite pieces has a table with two chairs and a huge jello mold on it. It’s the spiritual sibling of the enormous melting waffle. Go weird big food art, go!

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three things about today

maura @ 7:50 pm

1. Today is St. Patrick’s Day and I accidentally wore green. Usually I don’t — green is my favorite color so I wear it lots of other days, and also since I am 15/16ths of Irish descent I figure is it really necessary? Except that today I forgot about the date and picked a green blouse primarily because it’s short-sleeved and it’s been 100 million degrees at work recently and I had a class which meant I’d be pacing and waving my arms around for 75 minutes. And then I got to work and remembered and thought: doh.

2. When we got the kittens last Memorial Day they were about 2 1/2 months old, so we arbitrarily decided that March 17th is their birthday. Happy Birthday cats! They are still mostly bundles of fun, except when they chew electrical cords and eat Gus’s lima bean plant and scratch my record jackets (which I noticed this morning and which MUST STOP).

A couple of weekends ago we went to a giant pet store to get them some new toys. The best is a long feather on a stick that is very serpentine when wiggled. There’s also a small blue mousey thing with catnip that has already inspired growling and dirty looks. Rock on.

One of the toys came on this helpfully labeled card:


3. Today is also the birthday of my job. Happy Birthday, job! The past year has gone by almost in an instant. And I still love it. Definitely worth the investment in tuition to library school. Go, nerds!

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when there is nothing left to burn you have to set yourself on fire

maura @ 10:05 pm

What a difference 13 days make! I’m sure you’ll be happy to hear that my wounds are nearly completely healed now, with the exception of my knee. Of course I reopened that puppy by banging into the coffee table tonight while I was “playing” Mousetrap* with Gus. Duh for me. On the bright side, the face wounds have healed scab-free and are completely makeupable. If I’m wearing pants, no one even has to know how much of an idiot I am!

* “playing” Mousetrap with Gus involves setting up the whole trap mechanism and having him trap mice, in this case the red + yellow mice, repeatedly. No actual turns are taken, no actual game is played. It’s mind-numbing, but in a fairly inoffensive way.

So I’ve been meaning to expound on Anne’s comment from last week that the found stroller is cursed. You know, I think she may be onto something! Since I found that stroller we have been sick and sick. AND, last week my computer’s hard drive crapped out! Luckily I live in Nerd House, where there are 3 other computers to choose from, though I miss mine, a lampy iMac. Since then I’ve been on a PC where things are uglier. I’m so sorry for your ugliness, dear PC-users.

At first I thought the curse was an unhealthy curse. I found that stroller on the way home from the gym, and all the illness + injury has kept me from going to the gym much. But then the busted computer, I don’t know how that fits in. I mean, it is 3 yrs old, though I must admit I’ve never had a hard drive die on me. Anne, any ideas?

My friend S said, “are you going to get rid of that stroller?” and Jonathan was like, “no, we cannot, I LOVE it.” So there you go.

And in the making lemonade department, we used the computer fixit shop errand as an excuse to have lunch at Shake Shack, where we’ve been wanting to go forever. Gus ate his weight (about 28 lbs.) in cheeseburger, fries and chocolate milkshake, which astonished us. And it was yuuuuuuuuuummy.

And in other weekend news, my mom came up for a sleepover with Gus, and we hightailed it way across the river for a hotel date night. We stayed here, ate here, saw this and drank this (little cans! bendy straws! so festive!) staring out the window of our room. The next morning we slept til almost 8:30am! Such is the childfree life. Of course, we had to run back to Brooklyn quick because we missed that kid so much, but what are you going to do.

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banned from the end of the world

maura @ 11:19 pm

Gentle readers, have you been waiting with baited breath, wondering how my owies are doing? You have? So sweet of you. Why yes, I’d love to share the gory details, thanks for asking!

(If you were here I’d show you the wounds, but you’re not and the camera is all the way in the other room, and my knee hurts, dammit!)

We’re now on day 6 post-idiotic-falling-while-running-accident, and I’m pleased to say that nearly all of my wounds have stopped oozing. Yippee! A glaring exception is my knee, which is still in pretty bad shape. But this morning Gus said, “Mommy, your face looks better!” He then proceeded to kiss my eyebrows (sort of his security blanket, my eyebrows), so I know he means it.

One thing about injuries, they provide a fantastic vocabulary-boosting opportunity. Did you know that the yellowish-white goo that oozes from an abrasion is called exudate? Did you? Well, now you do.

I ointmented and bandaged myself up on Monday and hobbled into work (damn those 50+ subway stairs), where I was instantly mortified by everyone’s sympathy (yes, I am an idiot, please don’t remind me!). BUT, I’d completely forgotten that one of my coworkers is a bicycle racer, and thus knows a thing or two about road rash. He had some great tips, chief among them this new, cool, cling-wrap-esque bandage that’s actually letting me bend my knee without excruciating pain. Thanks, Xavier!

However, my face, while mostly non-oozy (save for a tiny spot on the bridge of my nose), is still a sight. I now have 3 big and 2 tiny red patches where the ooze used to be. Luckily I can cover them with makeup now, since they’ve dried out (and luckily I still have some coverup from last year’s forehead carcinoma removal, the first of what I’m sure will be many forays into the land of skin cancer). But vanity, thy name is ME, ooh boy. If the carcinoma is any indication, these owies will fade to lovely pale white spots, paler than the rest of my skin. Thanks, Celtic heritage, for giving me that easy-to-scar skin. Off to the pub to drown my sorrows in a pint.

Or not really. Really I am drinking a glass of wine and wondering why I am still awake at 11:05pm. It’s Gus’ fault — he didn’t conk out til after 9:30 tonight, and I gots stuff to do, blogs to read, PTA tshirts to coordinate. Plus, after 11 days of evil heat (ending with a few days of the mid-90s, a temperature that I believe should NEVER be reached at this latitude), it’s a breezy and fabulous 70-ish degrees today. The house is airing out, and the piles of laundry I couldn’t stand to do in our apartment without an outdoor-vented dryer are all lined up for tomorrow morning. All is right with the world.

I suspect Gus, at 3 1/2, may finally be ready to give up his nap. The problem is that he goes to school every day and they nap there. So we have no control over it, really. I guess we’ll just move the bedtime stuff back a bit to accommodate his wakefulness. Drag, though, as that shrinks the evening grownup time evermore. Maybe we can get him to play quietly by himself while we check email. HA hahahahaha! I’m so funny.

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oozy, sad

maura @ 11:50 am

No Poconos for us, no nature, no getting out of the hot hot city. Woke up this morning and though my face has scabbed over nicely (if there even is such a thing) my knee is still oozy and swollen, and has produced in me a fetching limp. Man, this sucks. Plus, every part of me that hit the pavement (nose, lip, chin, shoulder, elbow and esp. knee) still hurts. Owie owie owie.

So now we’re stuck here all weekend. Jonathan’s taken Gus to the playground this morning, and hopefully by the afternoon I’ll feel okay enough that we can all do something together.

Mostly I just still feel like a huge, total, complete loser. I dread going into the office on Monday, and having to explain the face carnage. Maybe I should start making up stories now. Barfight! Mugging! Chainsaw accident! Sandpaper mishap! Nah, none is as lame and painful as the actual truth.

Mope, mope, mope.

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in the corners of your mind

maura @ 9:37 pm

I did a hugely stupid thing today: while running to get the bus (wearing slip-on shoes and dragging the folded umbrella stroller beside me, duh) I tripped and did a giant face plant right on the sidewalk. My hands are abraded, my arm has a few scrapes, my knee is angry red hamburger, and my nose + mouth area looks like I got into a fight with sandpaper (and lost). Sigh. What a klutz am I. A friend/neighbor even walked by when I was sitting there on the ground, cleaning myself up with wipes. O, the embarrassment.

Then I had to surrender the day and sit at home with ice on my face + knee, ditching Gus pickup (Jonathan did it, I didn’t just leave him at school forever!) and our afternoon playdate, too. Sigh. I think I have the beginnings of a black eye, too. Gus said, “Mommy, your face is yucky. If I had those owies I would cry. I do NOT want to have those owies. No no no.” Thanks, kid. Luckily he followed it up with an offer of a hug to make me feel better.

And then he insisted that I paint the the toenails of my right foot with his blue nail polish (I’d already done the left foot yesterday). Yes, I recently purchased my son his first makeup: a bottle each of blue and pink nail polish. A little (boy) friend of his at school’s had toenail polish on recently, and Gus has been mighty envious. Of course, he is completely deprived in the makeup department, since I don’t really wear any (except face powder, which he occasionally asks to use and applies with a completely straight, serious face. It slays me.). So I bought him some nail polish. He’s been carrying the bottles around ever since, proclaiming his love for them. He prefers the blue, because it’s his favorite color, but pink is his second favorite.

Meanwhile, I am remembering from high school that, man, I hate nail polish. As my friend IMed me this morning, makes me feel like my nails can’t breathe. I’ve consented to do the feet but there is no way he’s getting that on my fingers, no way in hell.

Between the wretched heat (in the upper 80s with matching humidity here all damn week), some general grumpiness and today’s sidewalk mishap, it occurs to me that this has been a pretty crappy week. EXCEPT for the most excellent new Ivy CD, which Jonathan gifted me for my bday last week and which I really, really love. There are a few tracks that are kind of eh, but the good ones are really, really good. Of course I am doing that thing with music that I seem to not be able to stop doing lately, which is listen to it over and over and over again. Then stop, and move on to a different CD. Obsessive, much?

That’s pretty much it from my world. Tomorrow we are supposed to go to the Poconos with some friends/neighbors for fun + nature, but I might have to call it off if my face hasn’t improved. Drag, too, as I speedy-ordered a new bathing suit for river swimming, having been possessed by sudden and insane vanity this week. Which of course is probably why I did the face plant. See, it all makes sense now!

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