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4 kittens

The villain and her cat

Posted on 2016.08.14 at 21:46
In these parts, the hottest day of the year, historically, is August 11th (with an average high of 96°). The coldest day of the year, historically, is January 1st (with an average high of 62°).  The solstices are, of course, June 21 and December 21. That means that the hottest day lags behind the summer solstice by 51 days, whereas the coldest day lags behind the winter solstice by merely 10 days. Therefore, our fall is compressed by six weeks, and our spring is lengthened by six weeks. That doesn't seem fair. Spring is nice, but fall is the best. Winter is nice, too. Maybe we should pretend that fall lasts until February and leads directly into Spring.

E. Messily has been making some tiny circus vehicles to house tiny animals:

To give you a sense of scale, the bars on the giraffe's cage are made out of toothpicks.

Hawaii is at theater camp this week and next. They're putting on The Little Mermaid. Three of her friends came over to our house after camp last week, and Hawaii flitted around like a perfect thirty-something nervous hostess, keeping an inane running monologue about features of the house, who sits where at the table, various hijinks and complexities that the guests should be aware of. I don't think she was nervous. Rather, I think that adults ramble like seven year olds when they're nervous, and Hawaii's inflections and mannerisms resemble a 35-year-old.

(I coordinated afternoon childcare with two other parents. My days to watch the kids were Tuesday and Friday. During lunch on Tuesday, I browsed facebook and saw "I guess H still has lice! From over a month ago!" from one of the other parents.  I texted her, "oh no! Did they call you from camp?" and she texted back, "No, I saw it this morning, and sent her in anyway. I'm terrible." YES YOU ARE!!  The kid had an appointment at the lice shop that Saturday, so from Tuesday to Saturday I was hovering and spritzing Hawaii with mint oil. "Hair in a braid or a bun?" I asked every morning. Psychological torture (for me, not Hawaii).)

I jogged for the first time, wearing prosthetics. Hawaii had forgotten her lunch, and I was loping casually back to camp to hand it off to her. Jogging with prosthetics is more pleasant than jogging with real breasts. But less preferable to jogging with no breasts at all.

I walked Hawaii to and from camp each morning, which felt very virtuous and old-fashioned, because it was literally walking down our street, across the park, crossing a river, and then you're there.  On the way home, we stopped at the library one day - even more wholesome. It was hot as balls, though. Around 100°. I sure do hate this time of year.

I like to tell Pokey that the plural of Pokemon is Pokemen. He gets annoyed and corrects me. Maybe the singular of specimen is specimon.

Pokey has been getting out of bed, late at night, and telling us (very seriously) that he has a new feeling. He hasn't been able to find the word for it. After a few times, he said seriously that it was like a new life. We realized that he's probably talking about starting kindergarten. At least I hope that's it, because Pokey has been a bit of a trainwreck for the past three weeks. He had his first wrecking ball tantrum in his summer teacher's classroom. Which is to say that June and July were pretty good.

I will also have a new life: workshops start this week, classes start next week. Life returns to being heavily regimented. I don't mind a heavily regimented schedule qua heavily regimented schedule, but I dislike not having any wiggle room to accommodate things that go mildly wrong.

Look at that tiny star and spokes on the wheels! Maybe an inch tall?

On Saturday I met two Flatties for the first time, that is, women who have skipped reconstruction after having a mastectomy.  We rendezvoused at a Goodwill in Austin to look for clothes that flattered and camoflauged. Both of them did actually have cancer, like a normal person. One of them had reconstruction, but it went badly, and so after eight years or so, decided to have her implants taken out and go flat.  The other one just opted out. Neither of them wear prosthetics, the latter because her doctor told her not to, yet.

They looked so normal, flat. I'd never give them a second look in the grocery store. They both had smaller frames and narrower torsos than I do, so it was only somewhat reassuring to me. Nevertheless, it was sort of emotional and wonderful to hang out with them and try on clothes and debate the finer points of what to wear when you're flat.

This is silly and obvious, but: having breast cancer is so much worse and harder than what I've been through. I'm not thrilled with my situation, but good lord am I glad to have dodged that bullet.

Our kitty OJ lets me pick him up with one arm lengthwise along his belly, like a villain carries his cat, for prolonged stretches. He's quite content to accompany me around the house, puttering about the kitchen or whatever, until my arm gets tired.

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