I have this great reading list, right?

I hate to go to the library. I mean, I love it, but I hate it too. I have the list in my mind, but I cannot remember the list directly. I remember some things, but in reality, some of the books that I want to read on the list are in my possession already. Going to the library is literal torture. I want to check out a bunch of books and read them all---but I don't have time enough. I often get one book, but sometimes (lately) I don't even have much time to read that. Library books are pressure to me. I wake up some mornings afraid that one is overdue and then oftentimes I forget to check to see if it is overdue online, or I just have to bite the bullet and take all the books back in one big pile before they are actually due because of my silly fear. I hate giving the government anymore of my money.

So, I went to the library the other day with Dear Sir and all his offspring and we returned a ton of books. We walked around the library for awhile (it was a different one from the one we were used to so it was extra fun) and I looked up some of the authors that I admire. I found a book called Cakes and Ale by Somerset Maugham and have been reading that (which is NOT on the list, which totally figures). I have not finished As I Lay Dying, which I intend to, but for some reason, I am interested in this book. Maybe it is the way the guy writes. I literally got on the treadmill to walk (the day before I was afraid I messed up my knee) and read while on it.

The subject of the book is boring. It is about an author writing about his memories of an author (now dead) and how he is consistently bothered by his author friend about this dead author. He talks about his memories with the man, and his friend wants to write a book about him. That is pretty much all the book is about. I am not sure about cakes or ale. That does not make sense. Maybe it is some sort of saying and I don't know it. I often do not know sayings.

I have a distant memory about a library that I thought would be pertinent with this post. Back in my old homeland, I went to the library with my mother sometimes. One particular time my mother wanted me to just drop off books for her as she sat in the passenger's side seat waiting for me. She had about two huge plastic grocery bags full of books. I could not believe it. The corners of the books were even poking out of the bags, causing holes to form. Of course, there was probably about fifteen parking spots for anyone in the library (if that) so I had to park a little ways off (someone was already hogging up the drop off area). So I took the bags and started walking toward the shute. A middle aged couple were behind me and walking toward the library. Suddenly, one of the bags gave way and about a shelf of books scattered about everywhere in the parking lot. I am not sure how I got them all in my arms again, but no one helped me and the man with the woman said in a little huff as he walked by me and the scattered books, "Serves you right, checking out all those books."

I almost screamed, "I DIDN'T CHECK OUT ALL THESE BOOKS, YOU JERK!" but I didn't.

I went in the car and told my mom the story and she just giggled.



Boomer on the Barbie

The day we got home from the beach Eraser Eater wanted to try out his new boomerang (he got as a souvenir). I could hear my oldest in his high-pitched Mickey Mouse voice outside and the low hum of Dear Sir's in succession as the three men go outside to try the thing out. Soon Dear Sir's head pops in through the sliding-glass door and he says, "Rachel, we can't get the boomerang to work. No one knows how to throw it."

This is my signal to somehow produce, but I don't know how to throw a boomerang either.

I try it and of course, I do not throw it correctly. I sit and try to check the instructions, but they are confusing.

The neighbor comes over and tries it. She tosses it like a frisbee.

Dear Sir continues to mow the lawn and grill chicken at the same time.

My oldest takes the boomerang, backs up almost to the street and aims toward the neighbor's house. I am still looking at the instructions.

"It landed on the grill! Rachel! The boomerang is on the grill!" yells Dear Sir. He abandons the lawn mower, jumps over some shrubbery, and grabs it with the tongs. Eraser Eater at this point is in tears, thinking his boomerang is dead for good. I run over to take the boomerang and wipe off the barbecue sauce.

"You need to throw toward the STREET!" yelps Dear Sir in complete frustration.

"Uh, ok. Sorry, Dad," says my oldest.

"I think he's done," I say. "Just let [Eraser Eater] throw it."

Dear Sir, since he is holding the tongs, turns the chicken. He closes the grill and walks back to the mower. He starts it up again.

Somehow my oldest gets the boomerang again. Maybe he gets it from Eraser Eater or maybe Eraser Eater gives it to him, who knows.

I hear Mickey Mouse again in a whimpering yelp, and the boomerang flies through the air, heads toward the ground, and grazes Dear Sir's legs while going between the man and the mower. Dear Sir is quick and pulls back. The look on his face is classic.

All I can think of at this point is the look on Alice's face when the Cheshire Cat pulls up the Queen of Hearts' dress skirt, causing her to fall on her face and expose her red heart polka dotted underwear to all of the court and the whole world. She gets up with much difficulty (she is very fat) and tramps toward Alice with a red face, harried and angry look, and hair all wacky. Lets not forget the drum roll as she starts to speak and the picture shaking to better reveal really how angry she is. So she says, "Someone's head will ROLL FOR THIS!......YOU!" and she points at Alice.

The look on Dear Sir's face is almost incredulous. He can not believe that the boomerang was on the barbecue, then shortly about to knick him in the shin. His eyes pop out of his head and of course, in the true Queen of Hearts fashion, his face is beet red. Instead of "Off with your head!" he says, "Did I not say to throw toward the street? Why do you have the thing again anyway? You almost hit me! You are going to hurt people!" Etc. Etc. The neighbor is still close so I am sure he is trying to keep his cool. I look at the neighbor. She is in the garden and I catch her eye. She puts her hand over her mouth and giggles. I do too.

I immediately go to the pc and look up how to throw a boomerang. It says to throw in an open field, away from people, animals, and houses---basically anything that can get broken or hurt.

I laugh heartily though because I think it is funny. What are the odds, I say.

It's all high stress around here.
I have not been able to access the net in a few days---our broadband/DSL thing was not working. Finally I got someone to fix it and now we are all in operating order.


Last Night

Ok, so I wrote this huge cool new post about my trip, and somehow I lost it all. Good going, huh?

To sum it all up: It was a good trip.

I will be writing more frequently once I get back home (that is tomorrow---sigh).


The Beach...Again

So we are off to the beach again tonight and I am leaving my new country home (hopefully) clean and bright for our return. I have a lot to do. Last year we went to the beach in the end of September. It was very dead and enjoyable. This time it will be full of people (thousands, I have heard) and I am sure Dear Sir will teeter on a heart attack every hour. The kids will be with their cousins and I will have fun digging huge holes in the sand (if there is room---I am imagining swarms of people and no sand).

I must go though because I have to finish packing, run five miles (to reach my goal for the week), feed everyone food, clean up the house a little more, and be off by noon to meet my SIL in Fairfax and then the men will meet us there as well.

Dear Sir will be bringing the laptop, so if I am not posting, he probably will be on his blog.

See you (if not sooner) after five days.


Pelting It

I am a little depressed. I was in the middle of eating breakfast when the discipline bug bit my butt and I had to go upstairs and take care of matters with the boys. They were fighting over a pen. I got my hairbrush for those aforesaid reasons and also for perhaps brushing my daughters hair in a web of knots. I used the brush for one reason and then realized afterwards that my cereal was still sitting in the milk, getting only wetter. I took the brush, flung it on my bed in a flurry, over threw it, and of course, the only time I ever hit anything in my life dead on, I hit the body of my beautiful, black guitar and now there is a nice pretty nick in it.

Feel bad for me? I can take collections....

One final note. I have to go back to edit to do this and I thought it was worth it. Before writing this post I emailed this story to Dear Sir. This is classic HIM. This was his response:

"Sorry about that. Your guitar is ruined. That's sad."

I think I will just go and throw it in the garbage now, eh? It is virtually unplayable. It's RUINED!!!! AHHHHH!!!!!!


New Song---Check it out

I did not write the song---I sang this with my choir in high school when we sang in Carnegie Hall. The words to the "chorus" kept ringing through my mind when my band and I were getting ready for the Rwanda benefit concert. Obviously there is a lot of hurt and weariness there from the genocide, and so we put the song in front of "Bad" (a perfect U2 song that I love to sing) and kept going. You may hear the beginning of "Bad" at the end. You will hear dead silence for a bit in the beginning. You will probably hear a shattering glass in the middle. It's live.



I forgot to mention another book by Wilkie Collins that I am dying to read. Basil.

Apparently there is a movie out there loosely based on the book that stars Christian Slater. I read a bad review of it. I think I will just read the book.

I am currently reading "Good Country People" by Flannery O'Connor.

Not sure why Anonymous calls her blog "The Life You Save May Be Your Own." It was a highly unusual story. But unusual is good. It is memorable, actually.

By the way, I think Dear Sir put yet another song on my music site. Be sure to guide your pointer down to "The Music of Rachel Wilhelm" before you ditch me. Ok, I just looked at the site. There isn't anything new. So forget it. But check it often though, because it will make me feel warm and fuzzy inside if you do.

Good night.

"Unusual Fears"

Yesterday my SIL and I took the kids to the pool. It was closed down because someone pooped in it, so we went to the lake instead, right next to the pool. The pool was supposedly to open in about an hour, so the lake was a good alternative to keep the kids busy.

Like I have told you before, my oldest is petrified of insects. Especially flying ones. He was reluctant to go to the pool but then when he found that we decided to go to the lake, all he could think about was dragonflies. He stood on the sand and cried in utter terror while I tried to calm him down by telling him to "calm down" and "sit by me on the towel". He kept saying that the towel was "too close to the water" but I paid him no heed. I did not want to move and besides, the sun was in my eyes making me absolutely weary. My SIL and the other kids played in the lake while all this malarkey was going on. Other people were at the lake too, but I think they were a little too far down to see my son absolutely freaking out. He wasn't just terrified. He was crying, shaking, and immobile. This absolutely angered me. I know, I am heartless, but it did. There is only so much one can take and I think I was at my full capacity. First of all, we never go outside much on account of him, and then when we DO go out, we are made fools of. I keep going back to the same old junk I guess because I never learn. I constantly have to learn that my child is not a "normal" child and I have to think creatively about this instead of "normal".

And please, do NOT say that it is perfectly normal to be utterly petrified of flying bugs. People that see scenes like this say that to make me feel better. I hate to be lied to.

So, my dear, dear SIL saw how I was about to lose it from the foot of the lake where she was standing. I was standing in front of my son, shouting in his ear (I know, real calm, eh?) to "calm down". She smoothly came alongside my son and rubbed on his back and said, "T--, let's pray about this. Let's pray that God will protect you from the bugs. He created the bugs and He also controls them. He made them and He also made them to do His will. He knows that you are afraid of bugs so I think that if we pray, He will control them to stay clear of you and He will also help you stay calm and give you courage."

She prayed. She also prayed that I would be calm (which I needed---I was about to whack his head off). She also made him pray as well and he did. I sighed in serenity when we were through, and she proceeded to talk him through sitting down next to her. He looked here and there a few times in terror, but somehow she got him to do what she wanted (it was very time consuming, I will admit) and then he felt that he needed her to "survive" the rest of the trip to the lake. If she left, I was an "ok" substitute but "she better come back soon!" We dug in the sand and then headed to the pool.

Now, if anyone knows anything that I can do (next to this) to better help my son (he has Asperger's Syndrome---a high functioning form of Autism), please let me know. If anyone gets me angry and mad, it is him. I love this boy so much, but I often get in the way of a better solution. I realize that I need help in this, but he needs a sort of tangible help where I can better deal with the horrors of outside with him. I have tried insect sprays like "off". Like I have said, he read the directions and indications and he sees that it does not ward off bees and dragonflies.



Infested Material Girl

I had a weird dream about Madonna. She was trying to infect me with some virus by spitting on everything she could and hurling it at me. I would whip out my hand sanitizer after thoughtfully hurling the object back. I used it a lot. I can't remember exactly what kind of objects were hurled, I just remember that one of them was a purse.

Last night Dear Sir and I watched a little TV, so I did see Madonna in her new video last night. I do remember Courtney Love hurling objects at Madonna during an award show, but I am not sure that is what got me on the object hurling thing. I did, however, throw a lot of purses in a toy box that my daughter has in her room last night. And I HAVE been using hand sanitizer a lot lately.




My Sister in law and I went to an Ikea with the kids yesterday. It was chaotic. We got lost several times. We dropped some of the kids off at the play land area for a spell, but the time limit there was not nearly enough for any sort of shopping. Not in that place. It was so huge it took us probably ten minutes to find an "Exit" sign. I have never seen anything like it. It had its own parking garage. We continued to try to walk the mall and shop but none of us were having fun. It was ridiculous trying to cart around five kids. I think mine were the main problems too. Mainly the oldest. He just didn't know how to handle himself.

I think he gets tons of energy and he does not know how to expel it. He was hopping on rails and darting around here and there. Half the time I couldn't find him and then he would pop up again. He would not stop running his mouth. He had a sarcastic/inappropriate remark about anything said or done, so it was highly annoying. Take any 10 year old kid and multiply it times a hundred. That was my kid. My sister in law and I kept scolding him about his behavior so soon he would stand back about twenty feet away and yell so we could hear: " I am keeping my distance so you don't shout at me anymore! I won't be in your way here!" He had been literally snapping in people's ears and clapping his hands. I think part of the problem is that he does not go outside EVER. He is petrified of the bugs. There have been many times when he has braved outside and I find him at the edge of the driveway, face streaming with tears, crying out in a loud voice that he needs a guide to get back to the house because the bugs keep attacking him. I make him run on the treadmill to burn energy, but it is not the same.

Last night Dear Sir came home and we were all sitting down to dinner. He rubbed his eyes with his fingers and lifted his eyebrows. "I have a headache," he said, "I have had a continual headache for two days now."

"I'm sorry," I said.

"Maybe it is a margarine," my oldest says knowingly.

"Migraine, you mean," I breathed.

"Yeah, whatever."


In the Aftermath

There is a new song on my site---I have two versions---the nice version will be up when you go to the site, the rough version is dear to my heart and will be up shortly. Be sure to check it out.


Reading List for the Future

My to read list (off the top of my head) for the next good bit (and not in any order):

1. All of Thomas Hardy's novels (again)

2. The Frozen Deep by Wilkie Collins

3. The Short Day Dying by Peter Hobbs

4. More Flannery O'Connor

5. Sister Carrie and An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser

6. The Small House at Allington by Anthony Trollope

7. Don Quixote by Cervantes (not sure if I really want to read this---sounds crazy)

8. Demons by Dostoyevsky

9. Miss or Mrs? by Wilkie Collins

10. The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins

11. Strangers and Sojourners by Michael O'Brien

12. The Problem of Pain by C.S. Lewis

13. The Chronicles of Narnia (I have not read all but two, if you can believe it)

14. Romola, Adam Bede, Scenes of a Clerical Life, (and perhaps) Daniel Deronda by George Eliot

15. Haven't read any D.H. Lawrence

16. Need to read some Edgar A. Poe

17. Henry Esmond by Thackeray (Oh wretched Vanity Fair!)

18. Barnaby Rudge, Nicholas Nickelby, Hard Times, and anything else that is Dickens that I have not read

19. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis (I think?)

20. Finish Surprised by Joy by C.S. Lewis

21. Faulkner---As I Lay Dying or Sanctuary or both

Any suggestions, comments, questions, or input on any of these books if you know them, have read them, or have heard about them? Let me know. Post here.

In the Forest

There are no trees in Idaho. Well, there are trees, but not many. The place is mainly desert, believe it or not, and so the main reason why anything grows there is irrigation. I think it would all be dead if not for that. So, my niece, who lives there and is visiting me in the South right now, thinks that if she drives by three trees she is in the forest. I have been told that if she passes a few in downtown Boise, she thinks that everyone should be still so that she could hear the real sounds of nature.

I have been told that she almost had a heart attack when she got here. Where I live (in a battlefield---called "The Wilderness", mind you) there are trees galore. The only thing that bothers me about Virginia is that you can't find stores because trees are always covering up the signs or the stores themselves. So, since my SIL and I are painting (and it is going very well, by the way) the girls go out and play "in the forest." I am always telling them to watch out for snakes because they really do crawl around out there in the leaves, but they are not afraid.

My daughter told her that "Momma will come out and kill it with a shovel."


Click and Listen

Dear Sir put up a couple new songs on here. He says "My Heart is Faint" is rather boring. Tell me if I am crazy, but it is my favorite one. I just like the words, I guess (and the music), but it sounds like I didn't write it. That is always a plus for me.


Wed to a Monk

Dear Sir is so polite. I had to laugh. I can imagine a nightmare of his is taking a slew of kids to the pool with only one other male with him so the ladies can go out to shop. This is my Brother in law. He is so kind and ridiculously considerate. He came up with the idea and here Dear Sir says, "Uh, sure, sounds like a great idea!"

My Sister in law and I packed all the kids in the cars, gave the men the pool bag and took off. We giggled and laughed because we knew Dear Sir was completely not in his element.

We shopped and had fun.

We came home and everything looked fine for the most part. I said hello to Dear Sir. "Hello!" he said (about as jovial as possible).

When my sister in law and her family got in their car to leave, I said, "How was the pool?" with a dear, loving smile on my face.

"It was horrible. I hated it. It was pretty much everything I hate," he smiled and waved to them as they drove off.

"That's too bad."

"Yeah, let's put the kids to bed. I have to read before this day is through."


Bucket Kicked

When we got home last night from visiting my sister/brother in law at the airport, I looked in the tank to see about the fish. Hemingway kicked the bucket. I almost cried. He was lying on his side by the filter, limp and completely unnatural. Dear Sir would not let me tell the kids, so I ended up flushing the guy down the toilet as soon as my oldest crept his way upstairs to bed. He was really bloody. His fins were so messed up from the abuse of Sushi. Poor guy. He really tried to hang on.

So I told the kids this morning about Hemingway. Eraser-Eater burst into tears and cuddled next to me. My oldest said that we could just get one of those 13 cent fish and he would pay for it. My daughter said, "It's all Sushi's fault!" and that was the end of it. I was more upset than they were. I think probably because I tried so hard to keep the guy alive. It probably would have made more sense if he died by his own fin. True Hemingway fashion.

So, I think we will grieve for three weeks and then get another fancy-tailed fish. Any suggestions on a cool name? Fitzgerald? Hardy? Dreiser? Collins? I am going to try to get the kids to let me name it Wilkie.

Poor Hemingway, I have forgotten about him already.


Ok, My Major Issue

I have to confess that I never *graduated* from high school. I have never stepped one foot in a college for a class or any madness like that. Although I had a very high grade point average, I was one of those that really messed up socially and so therefore I did not finish. I obviously had a big reason. I did. I won't get into it. This is not important.

The fact that I did not graduate from high school has always been a source of great pain to me. Yes, I have gotten my GED, but I still did not graduate the right way. I have dreams continually that I can not open my locker to get my books, or I can't make it to class on time, or something prevents me from taking that final. I usually can't find my books. I am typically glued to a locker trying to remember the combination and the bell has already rung. Those are dreams of panic and much frustration. I hate them. You know, some people are ashamed that they have not finished COLLEGE. I have not finished less than that.

Why am I writing about this? Well, I have always been afraid to admit that I have not finished high school. That I was a drop out. I am. A statistic. I have to laugh because I have had conversations with people and they ask me if I have my masters in literature. Give me a break. I really have them fooled, eh? The fact is, yes, I have educated myself well in those areas, but I am in fact, a high school drop out.

So I am recently getting back to getting the home school stuff squared away with the government schools. The lady that is over the home education department for the school district tells me that I have to meet this criteria and that. She encourages me to take a different route from the one I had previously taken to get approval from the board of education so I look into it. The very first and simplest criteria is to show that you have a diploma from high school. Dear Sir thinks that a GED is the same. I knew it wasn't, but Dear Sir was convinced. So I call the lady and ask. She leaves a message to tell me that no, a GED is not good enough, and that does not qualify me under that case. I am not qualified to teach my own children. I have been teaching them for five years now, and for the first time I have a woman from the government telling me that I am not qualified. And---if I want to school them, I have to PROVE that I am qualified. Now, there are other ways around this whole mess, so I am not worried, but it just really sucks to have someone tell you that you are a zero. I have absolutely nothing on paper to show that I am semi-intelligent.

So the lady had sent me a packet stating the home school laws and such and I read her own written memo. Here is what it says:

"Parents must provide evidence that your child has attained a composite score in or above the fourth stanine on a battery of achievement tests which have been approved by the Board of Education or an evaluation or assessment which, in the judgement of the division superintendent, indicates that your child is achieving an adequate level of educational growth and progress. ......Parents shall file evidence of their ability to provide an adequate education for your child and a remediation plan for the probationary year. ....and parents shall make other arrangements for the education of your child. ....parents shall make other arrangements for the education of your child..."

I love it. Now I don't feel so bad.

Flannery O'Connor

I just discovered Flannery O'Connor. Well, I didn't JUST discover her, I knew of her before and even checked out a book once, but that was when I was diving into Wilkie Collins and didn't have the real time to invest. Not that I have much time to invest now, anyway.

I have to say that I am a bit unsettled by her harshness. I would expect as much from a man. And I don't mean harsh as in foul in language. She is just a little violent, and very to the point. I have read four short stories so far and three of them show the main characters meeting their demise or at least getting close to meeting it. I have a Credenda/Agenda issue of recent date that is all about her, so it sort of got me interested. I have to say that I am not a big fan of Doug Wilson. I think that he is a bit arrogant and his church is a bit of a cult, but sometimes he and his pompous crew come up with some good stuff to read. So the articles proved challenging that they wrote. So I challenged myself and got a book by Flannery at the library.

It'll put hair on your chest.


In the Valley

So Hemingway is not belly-up and he is healing. He looks horrid. He has bruises and is a little bloodied. He is hanging around more than one place in the tank lately though, so that is improvement. He used to be such a lively thing.

Nearly every morning I go out on my patio and read my Bible and enjoy the peace and quiet sounds of nature. My daughter, who is five, usually comes out with me and practices riding her bike or just sits quietly with me. Then we go and water the plants. Just last week she was eager to come outside with me. She was hurriedly putting on her sandals. She said, "Mom, I just want some peace and quiet!"

I said, "Well, when you come out here to sit on the chair, you will have some!"

She puts the last strap on her sandal and looks up at me in a little wince of annoyance. "I just wish the birds would stop chirping! It's annoying!" And she lets out a breath like a teenager and shakes her head.

I tried to explain to her that birds are free to chirp and that is part of the peace and quiet.

Dear Sir and I always kid with her about teenage stuff. She knows how teenagers act, so I joke with her and act like a valley girl (I am from California so I can do it quite well) to get her going. She always rolls her eyes and throws up her hands in defeat. Dear Sir even asked her last night if she was a drunk teenager "or something". Of course she does not know what this means, but he had me rolling. It is hilarious watching Dear Sir try to act like a valley girl.


I am the Fish Finisher

I feel really horrible. I feel how an executor must feel when giving a lethal injection.

You know, we got a fish with the house. Hemingway. He is a beautiful long finned goldfish---fat, cute, and happy. After two weeks of living with Hemingway, we liked having a fish so much we decided to get yet another fish. We got a white goldfish and the kids named him Sushi. I thought Hemingway would be happy to have a fellow swimmer in the tank. He wasn't.

Just over the past few days Hemingway has looked rugged and haggard. I didn't get it. I cleaned out the tank, I cleaned out the water, but I was afraid of what was wrong with him. I mean, when I would get him out with the green net, he would barely move, and did not care at all if my hand was near him. His fins were all messed up. They looked ripped and torn. I think he had a nice long fin on top of his head and now it is completely gone. Tonight I was on the phone with a friend and I noticed that Sushi was chasing Hemingway around the tank and nipping at him on his fins. Hemingway was darting here and there to get away.

I realized that Sushi was hurting Hemingway. I had to make a decision. I knew that Hemingway would not make it unless I got rid of Sushi. So I took Sushi and flushed him down the toilet. I immediately felt horrible though because I knew I would have to tell the kids.

I told my oldest first. This is what he said:

"Well, that's ok. He was a murderer anyway, right?"

I told my youngest (the daughter). She almost cried but when I told her what Sushi was doing to Hemingway, she recovered.

I told Eraser-eater. He started bawling. I explained the whole thing to him and he totally understood, but he still wanted Sushi to be in a good place. I had to pray with him that Sushi would find the ocean (he was still alive when I flushed him down the toilet---no shovel this time!) or the lake, and also that Hemingway would make it through the night (which I am not sure will happen).

I felt so bad I had Dear Sir hug me. He told me that we eat fish and it is ok to kill them. Then he called me a fish murderess---a lethal woman.

What would you have done? I know that Hemingway may die, but it is better to have a sick fish than a fish that murders other fish.

Wait a minute. Why do I care about fish? AHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Kingdom of Television

In deep contemplation while sitting on the couch, the thoughts that were running through my mind made me wonder what kind of person I am. Not that I sit and think about myself ALL the time (I think if we really admit it, we find that we DO), but at this moment I was supposed to be watching TV with Dear Sir. He is a channel flipper and so I have to take my Friday night and watch a mad dash to avoid commercials while we are watching three (sometimes four) different shows. Here is what I watched (if I even remember some of it):

Snippets of:

EWTN (the Catholic Channel)

24 (with Mr. Sutherland)

Some Spanish Channel where the lady has permanent tears streaming down her face and the guy is completely overacting (the lady is too).

And something else, I can't remember. Oh yeah, The Office.

Let me tell you, the second we got satellite TV I did not watch a single show until maybe last week. I think we have had satellite TV now for three weeks or more. A month. I told Dear Sir this and he stuck out his bottom lip in true sympathy and then said, "You should watch something you want tomorrow." (which means, "when I am not home") Then he proceeded to click away.

What frustrated me most is that I had to sit through a Spanish channel. I really don't like watching a bunch of people over acting---and to add more to it, speaking a different language altogether. I don't know how to speak Spanish. Dear Sir doesn't either but for some ridiculous reason, he likes to watch it and then says, "I can watch something other than English-speaking television, unlike you." or "I am not as narrow-minded in television watching as you are."

Why, dear friend, do I sit while he clicks at the channel changer? Why do I torture myself to watch TV with this guy? When I was young (before there were channel changers or else my family just could not afford one) my Dad used to make me permanently sit next to the television while he sat on the couch and watched it. I remember that he would stick his pointer finger out and twirl it around and around if he wanted me to change a channel. Up or down, I was his Vanna White. He changed channels too when the commercials came on. No, wait. I changed his channels when the commercials came on. That meant that I had to change the channels a lot. Duh.

So Dear Sir has gotten me into soccer. Wait. Let me fix that. Football. I thought it was ridiculous that in France they would separate them and "real" football was called, "le football american". I just wanted to take all the French lips and tie them into a knot. I hated French once I got in there. Maybe it was because my teacher told me that a monkey would make more progress than me? Maybe. So I wince to call soccer football, but the rest of the world does it, and it is too American to sit and call it soccer (and I am not all that proud to be an American) so I will call it football. Makes sense anyway. So what do we do when we watch football? We skip from the English channel to the Spanish channel. Like we would get anything out of the Spanish channel that we couldn't get out of the English channel. The only thing I could understand that the Spanish broadcaster said was, "GOAL, GOAL, GOAL, GOAL, GOAL, GOAL..." He said it a hundred times during the Germany/Argentina game. They had to do the penalty kicks and Germany kept getting goals. Hence his saying all the goals. Ugh.

I am long-suffering though, and I remain as quiet as possible and let Dear Sir rule his kingdom of television. Whenever I watch TV and he comes in on it he says to me, "You watch the commercials! AHHHH!" He tries to respect the fact that I have the channel changer but of course you can feel his frustration in the air; you can cut it with a knife. It's like the lady at the library continually grasping at that library card when I don't produce in time. It is almost like if he had it his way and a channel changer did not exist, he would ask me to go and change the channel for him with his little pointer finger. But I am his wife, and so of course, what do I do? I hand him the thing and torture myself.

Yes, I love torture, I love suffering, and I even just voluntarily let it happen. Someone take me out of my misery.