Monday, March 22, 2010

Not Cool

You know what isn't cool? Being unable to fall asleep until after 3:00 a.m. for no good reason. Last night, I had writing to do, so I checked e-mail and read blogs and hunted for recipes and then finally got down to writing the article around 9:00. I was finished by 11:00. I e-mailed the article to my editor, finished the tail end of the book I was reading, and then laid wide awake in bed for about four more hours.


I blame the subject of the article, which, when it comes out (this Thursday, I think), I want you to read with a few pieces of information in mind. The man whom I interviewed was, I am fairly sure, high. I don't know much of anything about this first-hand (D.A.R.E. worked for me!), but I don't think it's normal for a person to be talking along, completely appropriately, and then, mid-sentence, stop, cover his face with his hands, pause for a good ten seconds (long enough for me to rip my eyes away from my laptop screen and ask, "Are you OK?"), and then resume speaking as though nothing odd had happened. Repeatedly.

The first time it happened, I was concerned for his well-being. After the fourth time or so, I was more concerned for my well-being. It was at this point that the "urban grittiness" of the neighborhood and the "quirkiness" of the local color started to leak into the edges of my subconscious, so that even as I was merrily asking questions and typing the answers, I was also calmly thinking, Jason's car is going to be stolen while I'm in this store. I'm going to have to call someone to come and get me. I wonder what he'll get to replace it.

All's well that ends well, I suppose, and of course I made it home safe and sound. I had never been in any actual danger, either - just a slightly off-beat store in a down-on-its-luck neighborhood on a sunny Friday afternoon. But I don't think my subconscious has completely recovered, and thus, I ran on less than four hours of sleep today.

Unrelatedly, you know what else isn't cool? The way Jemma pretends to be a dog (or a baby, or a cat, or a horse, or today, a rabbit) 75% of her waking hours, complete with constant, repetitive animal/baby noises and Annie believes that she is starring in a musical version of her own life which must be constantly narrated with song and stage direction ("Iiiiiiii . . . . am getting ready for daaaaaaance classsssss . . . . Jemmaaaaaa, pretend you are my baaaaaby and you are crying because I'm going to leeeeeeeave"). At 4:45 this afternoon, after they had sung/ribbited/high-pitch-squealed their way through destroying the living room by dismantling all the furniture for "lily pads" while I started dinner, I stopped them, looked them calmly in the eyes, and said, "I need you to stop making that kind of noise. You are making me crazy. In my brain."

We went outside. That was better.

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