Monday, May 07, 2007

pushing all the buttons

Here's the part where I would post gorgeous pictures of our planters all festooned with blooms, except that I have not actually moved beyond this picture yet.

Hey, they'll survive until I get them into the planters. I've been watering them and all, and they're in a sunny spot. I just haven't found the proper motivation yet. Say, little army of cartoon devils poking me with pitchforks.

So Joe's mom was in town this past weekend. She found my blog about a year ago, but I don't think that she reads it anymore--though (disclaimer!) it would be OK with me if she's still secretly reading it because it's COOL and we are FRIENDS. Honestly, I think we have a pretty good relationship, considering that we are pretty different. However, you know that whenever parents visit, they always manage to hit the hot buttons, of which a few are:

  • You Guys Are Killing The Dog. She thinks it's cruel to keep dogs in the city, which is probably not altogether untrue, but considering that there's someone home with Cooper 24/7 and she has a dog walker and she gets out four times a day AND that we have, as noted by many, a pretty big apartment, I think there are worse abuses for a dog to suffer. If Cooper whines, Joe's mom laments that she's "crying," and if it's 6pm and we haven't given Cooper dinner yet, Joe's mom says that we're "starving" the poor thing. Her other favorite thing is to pet Cooper and tell her how much "grandma" loves her and how she wishes she could rescue her and whisk her back to Ohio, if only their housing development didn't have a rule against dogs weighing more than 40 pounds. (Cooper weighs 68 pounds at her last vet checkup.) Joe waspishly suggested that if we kept "starving" Cooper and maybe amputated two of her legs, she might make the weight requirement yet.
  • So What Are You Going To Do Next? I warned Joe the day before his mom came that she was going to be asking a lot of questions about the whole match process, and that he should try not to get stressed about it because she just wants to be in the loop, and she as a civilian understandably doesn't know a lot about how the whole medical education process works. For example, when Joe was looking for a job for the upcoming year, Joe's mom suggested that he just "pick up a couple of shifts at the ER" to make some money--never mind that Joe's graduating from an ophthalmology residency and she may just as well suggest that he read a few X-rays or do a little neurosurgery to make some extra scratch. So over dinner on Friday night, when Joe's mom inevitably asked, "So, what are you doing about this fellowship thing? What's going to happen next? WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO?" Joe succinctly answered, after a long pause, "It's very stressful for me to think about right now," and I delicately moved the conversation in another direction by exclaiming loudly about the status of Cal's diaper while simultaneously dumping the contents of my dinner plate down the front of my shirt.
  • You Need To Have Another Baby! Immediately! It Must Be A Girl! And You Should Name Her "Fiona!" I explained to her that we would like to have another kid at some point, though perhaps not immediately, and that we certainly would not be naming it after a character from "Shrek."

We had a very nice weekend, though, and Joe's mom gave me a refresher course on how to use my sewing machine. (She taught me last fall, but the second she walked out the door I forgot everything she said. "Wait, thread the what through the what? And what the hell's a bobbin?") So now I can sew things with robot-like efficiency. I made a new scrub hat, and with the sewing machine, it took, like, three minutes, as opposed to an hour as it would if I sewed it by hand. Also, she watched Cal while Joe and I went to on our Annual Movie Night, which was very good of her. Unfortunately, "Spiderman 3" kind of sucked. Believe you me, I don't mind a good summer popcorn flick, I wanted to like it. But it was dumb. Also, much, much too long. How do you know a movie is too long? When you finding yourself thinking, "Wow, this movie is really long" four or five times even before the final anti-climactic denouement. (Spoiler! Spiderman wins!)

I'm on night float for the pain service this week, which means I'll be overnight in the hospital six days out of seven. (I get Saturday off, but I don't get home until Saturday morning, having spent the previous night in the hospital.) However, I should get a reasonable amount of rest at night, and given that the weather's finally turning the corner, I should have some nice days to spend with Cal, and Cooper, our abused, starving dog, who's probably off crying herself to sleep in the corner and plotting her escape route to Ohio as we speak.