Steak and TV

My husband and I were fortunate enough to be treated to dinner at the Metropolitan Bar and Grill the other night. It's a fabulous steak house in Seattle and I'd never been. It was a warm summer night, which is a fabulous time to be walking around Seattle, the restaurant was beautiful - all deep woods and shiny brass and little green bankers lamps, and the steak was amazing. I mean, after the first bite, I felt like it was a crime against nature for beef to ever be prepared any other way. Every other good bite of beef I'd ever had paled in comparison. I might as well eat chicken. Or fish. And I don't even like fish. If I'm not having steak at the Met.

Which is also why television is dead to me. I'm a big fan of good television. Big. I love tv. I actually prefer it to film, usually, because it's there for you every week, ready to hang out, not flitting in and out of your life for a brief two hours with everyone else in the theatre. And yes, I despaired some for the fall lineup after losing lost and 24, but I had some things I still watched - Bones, The Mentalist, Lie to Me, a smattering of "reality" television.

And then, on a whim (and at the prodding of my mother and sister) I turned on The Good Wife. And much like the steak at the Met, I can't watch anything else. I didn't even watch the finale of SYTYCD, and for those of you reading this blog last summer, you know I love SYTYCD. I tried to watch Lie to Me. Nope, still like Tim Roth, but I was bored. Tried to watch Top Chef. Eh. It's gone the way of Red Robin hamburgers. It's just bleh.

So now I need something new to do with all my time. Something besides staring at my Tivo menu willing a new episode of The Good Wife to spontaneously appear. That doesn't work, by the way, but now I have an honest answer to the "what would your super power be" question.
(You can keep your vampires and werewolves, thank you very much)

Closets and Carousels

Have you ever set out to clean your closet, then ended up with all the clothes (and other odd items that always seem to end up in closets like broken fans, Nordstrom bags, and books on HTML) strewn all over your floor in your attempt to make things better? At this point I'm really hoping you have, or not only will this whole analogy fail but I'll have to reexamine my life if I'm the only one to have ever done this.

Assuming I'm not.. I'll continue and share that this is pretty much what's happened to my book this summer. I thought the middle needed tweaking. Then I thought I'd just take it out and rework a few things. Then I rewrote certain chapters again and again, with all sorts of different directions until I had a big tangled mess all over my bedroom floor, er, computer screen. (though my floor could actually use some work, too.)

Fortunately, I went to the zoo this week, with the kids, and they rode the historic carousel and I started to see a way through the mire. Did you know some carousels, wooden carousels no less, were steam powered? I won't detail too much here, but suffice it to say the carousel is my equivalent of going to Storeables and loading up on plastic bins.

The photo above is from a new favorite place on the web called Curious Expeditions and details this still operating steam powered carousel in the Netherlands with horses that face perpendicular to the circle, and are mounted on springs, so you're constantly rocking out toward the edge as the ride goes in circle - and puffs steam. Yes, the Netherlands has just sky-rocketed on my list of places I must visit!

Wash and wear

You know when you go get your hair cut, and you say you really need a style that you can just wash and wear, and, sure, your stylist will work with you, but you get that little look from them like, "Geez, you can't take the time to dry your hair. Haven't you seen Oprah? You're not supposed to let yourself go. But sure, wash and wear..."

To which I offer this morning's events. I took a shower. Boop, Red, and the Mystery Man (who is also a cowboy, I'm not sure I've mentioned that here. He has a real, authentic cowboy hat, cowboy boots that he wears everywhere including the beach, and most recently, a cap gun), they were all downstairs basically content.

Then they aren't. I stick my head out of the bathroom and shout down to them. Then realize that while I've made a strict rule not to point the cap gun (rifle, really, and about as tall as Mystery Man) at any living thing, including siblings, I had neglected to forbid anyone from holding the rifle by the butt, then running at their siblings till they shrieked and whacking them on, well, the butt. I'd left out this particular instruction and Mystery Man was taking full advantage of the loophole. So, I put a stop to it.

Then I return to the bathroom and begin drying my hair. After about thirty seconds, Red pokes her head in and says,

"The level of urgency of this matter has greatly increased."

And there went my hair.

Children of crime writers aren't normal


DH and I took the troops to the Arboretum this weekend - my little adventurers love trekking through the woods with "rations" (as Red calls them) in their packs and walking sticks in hand. I, of course, carried a latte.

As we were passing a particularly wooded area (or as Mystery Man calls it "the Deep, DARK, WOOOODDDS!"), the following conversation ensued,

DH: I've matured so much as a father
Me: Really?
DH: Yes, because in the past, I'd have told a scary story about what lurked in these woods. But now, I know better.
Kids in unison: AWWWW, why won't you tell us a story!
DH: Because it's better to have your last moments be happy and just go quickly if you're gonna get eaten.
Boop: I'm gonna live a long time, longer than you, probably even longer than Red.
DH: Why?
Boop: Because I'm younger.
Red: Yeah, but someone could take an ax...

** this is the little lake where we stopped to let Red sketch and Boop and Mystery Man fight over sitting on a rock.