Thursday, September 12, 2013

Very Colorful

Last night was back to school night at my daughter's school. (Tagline: School events: All the uncomfortable mingling of networking events. None of the alcohol.)

In preparation for the parents seeing the new classroom, all the kids in class did construction-paper portraits of themselves to display. And at the bottom of the portraits were identifying facts the children had written about themselves. 

As we walked into the classroom, all the parents were tasked with finding their kid's portrait, then putting a post-it note on the picture telling the child that we had found it. What a cute little icebreaker of a get-to-know-you, right? I'm sure the teacher figured this was a no-brainer, as the portraits resembled our children, the information they provided further identified them, and all good parents recognize their own child's handwriting. Besides, even if all else failed, by simply using a process of elimination a parent could find their child among the 27 portraits. 

(And sure...that may work just fine for children that do not produce this kind of artwork.)

All of these things went through my mind as I went up and down the entire wall four times, finding nothing that resembled my child. I asked for help from other parents, looked on the opposite wall to see if it was there for some reason, and finally -- not wanting to further embarrass myself in front of all the quality parents, convinced myself that she must have missed the activity and simply gave up. 

So when I picked her up from school this afternoon, I explained that I could not find her portrait at back to school night and asked if she would show me where hers was. And she did: 

(scroll down...)

The upside: my child obviously does not see color
The downside: apparently, I do
In my defense: the kid has never once worn a bow in her hair
Not unrelated: she is going to be Gabby Douglas for Halloween. 

Monday, September 09, 2013

Beaches be Loco

Since I last checked in, I have gotten around (insert "just like high school" joke here). In the past few weeks, I shuttled coast to coast -- first out to LA for a work conference, then a quick stop at home to retrieve my family, then to Virginia Beach to run a half marathon. Carefree days of summer, indeed.

The conference was for the travel and tourism industry, which means that many cities and tourist destinations attend to try and lure you with extravagant parties and ridiculous gift bags. The first night I was in town, I attended a cocktail party at the California Science Center that had a Mad Men theme. I mistakenly thought this meant I should wear long gloves and drink martinis. Instead, I spent the evening fetching coffee for men while rebuffing unwanted advances. 
I said, "a new car" and gestured accordingly about 10 times while
trying to get this picture. I love woody wagons.
Another night, a group scheduled a private tour of Universal Studios. While on the tour, the tram ahead of mine spontaneously combusted, causing an emergency evacuation. I'm sorry -- but being involved in a tram emergency is akin to being in rehab for a wine cooler addiction -- you get no street cred for that. Universal is also where I received a very poor excuse for a gift bag, which caused me to throw a bit of a tantrum. I'm not proud of this -- mainly because it made me indistinguishable from about 80% of Hollywood. And let's just say that some people know it's time to leave LA when the acting thing doesn't work out...others pack it in when they can no longer deal with the traffic...I know it's time to head east when I angrily dismiss my nine millionth event gift bag as "sub par."

During the actual conference, a man I do not know walked up to me and asked if I was "drinking tequila with Norm during the Cancun trip because, if so, he has a photo of me." When I responded that I was not there, he looked very confused and stopped scrolling through his iPhone pictures. I need to find my doppelganger and make friends with her because she is way more fun than I. One day, I want to be the woman some random stranger recognizes from her tequila-drinking escapades. With Norm.

With all those hijinks as a lead-in, the half marathon was kind of anticlimactic. Save for the butt chafe and the fact that I prancercised the entire distance. Also, the medal. (For the run, not the chafe...although it was record-breaking...)

Literally a pain in the butt,