Monday, November 10, 2003

Weekend Round Up

Steve often complains that weekends aren't relaxing around here. He has memories of his dad kicking up his heels on the barko-lounger for marathon sessions in front of the TV. His dad felt entitled to do absolutely nothing for two days, except maybe mow the lawn for thirty minutes, because he had put in a hard 35 hour work week. How much would Steve love to sit at his computer playing war simulations games for two days straight?

Well, tough. There's just too much to do. The relief pitcher is on the mound.

This Saturday, I blew a gasket. I was tracking down articles on the teachers union on the computer, but Ian kept climbing on my lap grunting uh-uh, which means Teletubbies web site. Telebubbies web site, Mama. Steve dragged him out of the computer room, but Jonah was at his little table here getting into trouble with Elmer's glue and a shaker of glitter. I ran out of the room to find shelter in the bedroom when I stepped on the cat. Ei-Ei-Ei. GET THEM OUT OF HERE!!

After Steve dragged the savages out to Van Cortland park, I was actually able to have some quiet thinking time. I ticked a few things off the work to do list.

Part of the trouble with being a part time academic is that you can't really do it part time. It's more than just the time spent lecturing or even the time preparing for the lecture or grading papers. There's all the time (and unpaid time) keeping up with the literature and preparing for conferences. All that has to happen over the weekend. Sometimes I think it would just be better to work part time at Pottery Barn. At least I would get a discount on cushions and towels.

On Sunday, after some feeble attempts to clean our apartment, we lit out for New Jersey. We still have some misguided hope that we can move the kids to the suburbs. We looked at some houses that we couldn't afford, but it was interesting that all the houses had been reduced in price. Maybe things are softening up a bit.

On the way back to the city, we stopped off at Trader Joe's. I had heard tales of this supermarket from friends in California where it originated. It's not your typical Grand Union or Shop Rite. In the first aisle were some specialty teas and coffees, their line of pita breads and bagels, and jams. Nothing too exciting yet. The center aisle was the heart of the operation. Giant freezers filled with frozen dinners. Not fried chicken and apple cobbler mind you, but pad thai, risotto with portobello mushrooms, and tandori chicken. Everything organic, ethnic, free range. The prices were reasonable, too. $1.50 for a vegetarian burrito. We quickly filled our basket.

Sometimes it pisses me off when stores get us down so perfectly. The minute I went in, I knew I fit the demographic. Busy and urban. I hate being so predictable. (see blog 9/11) My ornery self was tempted to throw down the basmati rice, and head over to Taco Bell for a nacho supreme. But instead, I grabbed a hunk of blue cheese and sulked over to the checkout counter. And, damn, those burritos were good.

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