I always wonder if I see life the way it really is. Not just how other people see it, although that is certainly a part of it, but life as it really is. Like I wonder why my five year-old shaved his tongue with Topher's razor (yeah, it makes me cringe just to type it) and not only what was going through his head at the time, but for the moment afterwards as he was sucking on a cloth, looking up at me with his puppy-dog eyes as I struggled to see how it all fit in the grande scheme of things and what sort of reaction I should put out into the universe, what--yell at him? comfort him? I did both--you know, just to cover all the bases--and I wondered what would amount to all these little incidents in his life and mine. What would he remember about the incident? Would he remember it at all? Would he ever look at a razor in the same way? I won't.
I've been complaining so much this Summer about Provo City not fixing our basement after they were at fault for flooding it with 2 inches of rain water until yesterday when my neighbor discovered that she had 10 inches of sewage in her basement because of a block in the city's pipes. Turns out it was a dog. Some idiot had put a dog in the pipes (at first alive or dead? the world will never know) and I thought about the idiot who thought that was a good idea, or was it an accident? a dare? Turns out several homes had poo in their basements yesterday and the damages will be in the tens of thousands. Does that guy (and, yes, I'm being sexist, I'm just so sure it's a male aged 14-22) even know what happened? I wish I had a good poo-joke to insert here, for Eric's birthday, but I don't.
I left my baby (and other children) with my mom and dad while I saw Topher's musical (another blog for another day) and when I came back and asked how the baby did, my mom said "Oh, he was fine! An angel. . . what a beautiful. . ." and then my dad cut her off with an indignant "Thank goodness you're back! OH, he was AWFUL! Man he can scream! What's wrong with him?!" Now I know my dad didn't have anything to do with "watching children," because just as enthusiastically he yelled, "Now come and see your kitchen sink! It's never BEEN this clean!" He was really pleased with himself, and while I sat and nursed the baby he proceeded with his itemized list of household chores including pouring bleach down all my drains and removing that nasty glob of Gorilla glue (a present from him, I might add, and it is, undeniably, the best glue in the world, but, like all things, comes with a price) we couldn't get off our bathroom counter. Well, he was really proud of himself--he got it off. Of course I wasn't offended by my father, (but I did tell him my mini-van was a mess, "by the way"), he has his own way and I've grown to love it, but I thought the dramatic difference between the two reports interesting.
I'm not claiming to have a firm grasp of reality, but I do think a lot when vacuuming. And since you know what my father is like, you'll know I do it a lot. I think that the people who have the most interesting things to say about the way things really are unlikely sages. Like everyone assumes that my little brother who has fame and money would be out of touch with reality, which isn't true. Because he has this experience of celebrity, coming from totally different beginnings in the Midwest, he has a really unique perspective and, as a result, has really interesting insights about life as it is. (As a rule, I must note, I don't want to know what Brittany or Paris or Angelina [and her mohawk baby] have to say about life, politics, or exercise.) My friend Erbecca has gone through more craziness than anyone I know, enough to make someone like me roll into a ball under my bed with a box of Godiva and never come out, but she always says, "it is what it is" and "ignore the crazy" with a sense of humor. My friend from Dawlish, England who once sold donuts and, is this right?, braided hair on the beaches of Greece, and lived in the rough part of London with her little ones, has grand insight into the human condition. And she lives in a quiet, little sleepy-town full of waterfowl.
I love any movie about awesome young adults discovering awesome things about life and reality, as beautifully documented in the 90's cult classic, Reality Bites. Because they always come up with awesome new insights about following your dreams and being true to yourself. But what do they have to say about poo sludge in your basement and babies who scream like dinosaurs?