September 14, 2010

Chicago: The Pretty City

New discovery: I am really, really, REALLY cute in Chicago. It’s true. We used to live there but I guess I was too busy working and being busy to realize it. Or maybe it wasn’t true then because my hair was pretty short and one time when I went to the grocery store without any make-up on & my boobies squished into a sport bra pancake, some dude called me “Sir.” But it’s true now. Chicago makes me adorable.

We went for a long Labor Day weekend. Yes, Ethan missed 2 days of school. Unexcused. It’s not like I can lie about it like the rest of you do because I write a blog and I would get caught and I’m pretty sure they, like, stone you or electrocute you or make your kid wear a scarlet “U” on their clothing or something in our school district if you rack up more than 6 unexcused days. At least that’s what I’ve heard from some pretty trustworthy sources. Also, I really suck at lying. Don’t get me wrong, I’m really creative and can make up a pretty good lie. It’s just that later -like maybe 5 or ten minutes later- I can’t remember that I told it, so I will totally un-tell it. Either that or I occasionally go overboard with the lies and get a bit too creative which can really cause the person I am lying to to start questioning me a bit too much, which only makes me get more creative, i.e. ridiculous with my lie, until I eventually get busted. It’s not that I’m a good person or anything.  I’m really just too imaginative, forgetful and stupid for lying.

Anyway, the Chicago weather was perfect. It was in the 70’s and 80’s. No humidity. Sunny. Breezy. Beautiful. Yes, in about a month the sun will disappear, it will take approximately 7 hours to dig your car out of its parking spot to go to work, and everyone will have that Seasonal Affective Disorder or whatever that thing is that Dr. Oz says is real but I just think is an excuse for people to do things like eat canned meat, let their leg, pit and crotch hair get out of control,  and watch things like Jerry Springer and Cops without feeling like white trash. But right now, the weather is perfect.

After living in Houston for so long, I had totally forgotten what late summer/early fall felt like in normal states. You know…states without alligators, flying cockroaches and ants that can kill you in your sleep. It’s actually been about 10 years since I left Houston in the fall. Here it is still nearly 100 degrees and 90% humidity. There it was awesome. My skin was gorgeous with hardly any makeup. No grease or sweat in sight. My hair….I could write an entire blog on how amazing my hair was. It was so, so straight. Even after being outside all freakin’ day! Even after getting attacked by a few 30 MPH wind gusts it would just miraculously fall right back into perfect place. There was no curl. No kink. No frizz. It was heaven. And there was no pit or back sweat. I smelled like flowers and cotton candy. I was also really, really skinny. Even though I was deep into a Chicago hot dog and deep-dish pizza binge,  I think the combination of a normal humidity and temperature level made me shrink. The agreeable weather in California is the reason why all the actresses in Hollywood are so thin. Well, that and the drugs and anorexia. I’m pretty sure I saw a Discovery Health Channel special on all that once.

I was so adorable that, even at age 38, on a boat WITH MY HUSBAND IN TOW,  I still got free beer from the bartender without flashing him a boob or telling him he was muscular or anything. I think he was just a sucker for straight shiny hair, matte skin, and a shirt without pit stains.  I wasn’t even turning on the charm. If I had, they probably would have let me drive the boat if I wanted to. The only person on the boat who didn’t get hypnotized by my adorableness was our tour guide, Lorenzo. Oh, it was working for awhile…he was totally into our entire family unit: teasing Ethan, quizzing Steve, letting me sing into his microphone…Then I accidentally spilled beer. Into his mouth. I won’t bore you with the details, but he just kept saying over and over “Twenty years of sobriety! Twenty years of sobriety.”  Chances are good that I’ve knocked people off the wagon before, although maybe in a less forceful way…just by being annoying and driving them to drink to drown out my incessant chatter. So this isn’t really a big deal for me. I’m sure he’ll be ok.

Unfortunately, although Chicago makes me cute it makes Ethan annoying. He was pretty much a giant whine bag for the first couple of days, but by the end of the trip he was having fun. Actually, he seemed to straighten up on day 3 after I accidentally dropped a twin size roll-away bed on top of him, pinning him down with about 1-inch of breathing space. And even though I could hear him whimpering, I was laughing so hard I couldn’t work up the energy to lift it off of him. You know that super-human burst of strength that moms are supposed to get when their child is in danger? It doesn’t really work if you’re laughing so hard you’re about to pee your pants. But eventually I got it under control and rescued him. And after a minute of being mad at me for laughing, he was laughing too, and his mood was much better for the rest of the trip.  Not only am I cute in Chicago, I learn really important life lessons there:  If you want your kid to straighten up you should almost “accidentally” kill them. Works like a charm.

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