Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Emptiness

Feeling lonely tonight. One kid is at volleyball practice, the other is in bed. My husband is not home yet. I am sitting on the couch listening to earnest songs with piano music and sensitive male voices, making myself sad.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Flow

I am obsessed with the storm door. Why did I wait so long to get one?

I sit in the living room with the patio door open and the storm door window down. I can hear all kinds of sounds outside. Someone is mowing their lawn. Birds chirp here and there, and I hear cicadas. It's pretty cool, and it reminds me of growing up in Puerto Rico in a house with a screen door and screened metal pane, miami-style windows.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Friday, September 17, 2010

Justification for the existence of Auto-tune

The latest Auto-tune the news meme




The one that made Mainstream media notice the trend



The little known, earlier gem



Even infommercials



Captain Kirk is climbing a mountain!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

9/11/01

I had just made it up the elevator and was approaching our team's block of offices when I first heard of the events of September 11, 2001. A co-worker was listening to the news in her portable radio; the second plane hit the South Tower right around that time and it was evident this was not a freak accident, but some kind of a terrorist attack. People were terrified about our city being the next target.

Years later, people have questioned why I did not rush out of the office right away to pick up my child and go home, like other people did. I really do not know why. I guess I just did not think it was necessary. I did not feel in any immediate danger. It all felt so far away, almost unreal. Rather than fearing for my life, I obsessed about the doomed passengers of the hijacked planes, or the people who jumped from the towers. I wondered what I would have done had I been in their shoes, powerless in the face of an inevitable demise.

Not much work got done as we spent hours listening to the radio and checking the Internet for news about the attacks. Sometime that afternoon, an Argentinian colleague expressed his annoyance at our American coworkers "making such a big deal" out of what had happened. I was at a loss for words. I have an appreciation for the fact that there are countries ravaged by political instability and terrorist attacks on a regular basis. When the threat of violence is part of everyday life, you definitely develop a tough skin. But it was insensitive of my colleague to not realize that life in this country was forever changed that day. For the first time an outside enemy had successfully executed a large-scale attack on Continental US soil; worse yet, it was done from the inside, turning our own transportation systems against us. If people were scared and freaking out, it was totally understandable.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Cliches

Can we please declare a moratorium on the tired trope of inexperienced parents and poopy diapers? I saw these within a few hours of each other. Honestly, people, let's try a bit harder, OK?



Sunday, September 05, 2010

Friday, September 03, 2010

Friday afternoon

I am a recluse. The last couple of weeks I have spent so many days in a row working from home that I have forgotten what it's like to roam the world at large. My daytime solitude is interrupted only by visits from Cipriana the cleaning lady, an A/C technician and a door installer. I have no friends who would feel compelled to drop by my house casually. Everything has to be scheduled in advance, everybody is too busy or lives so far away.

Friendship was a lot easier when I was young. These days I have more contact with random commentators on some of the blogs I follow than I do with my friends. Maybe I am socially awkward; maybe I can't muster enough interest to put on a happy face and reach out. Who knows.

I venture outside only to drive a child to and from school. I think of mass extinctions, ice shelves breaking apart, and oil spills. I dread getting old, losing my job, dying of hunger, alone and forgotten.

I fight with everybody. I yell at my kids; the slightest hint of an attitude, the dragging of feet when it comes to schoolwork, are enough to send me into paroxysms of rage. I tell my husband to drive safely every time I speak to him on the phone. I am convinced he is going to die of a heart attack or a car accident at any moment.

I am an alien in my own home, married to a man who does not speak my native tongue, raising kids who are mine and yet so different from me. They speak to me in English because they know I can speak it fluently, and as a result their Spanish is rudimentary at best. They are barely interested in my cultural heritage and are utterly unimpressed by my culinary traditions (except for tostones, they all love those).

My children love the idea of Puerto Rico, but they do not miss it like I do. Growing up in Texas is their reality. I miss it so much it hurts, yet I do not jump through hoops to go back. The last time I visited was a year and a half ago; when I was there I felt slightly clueless and out of place, like someone walking into a movie showing that is halfway through and has no idea what is going on.