Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Like Clockwork

Last night, because we were worried about the night flipping, we checked on him nearly hourly.

Each time I ventured into their room, he was in a different position.

Face down, East-West.

Face up, North-South.

Half-up, Half down, East-West.

Face down, South-North.

His body was like hands on the clock, marking off the hours.

Po-TAY-To, Po-TA-To

As opposed to the potato, carrots were very well received.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Definition of Insanity

Is when you do the same thing over and over, expecting a different result.

BioMom told me that old joke in the wee hours of the morning after Mr. Big had scared the hell out of me.

I heard a few grunts on the monitor and decided to go check on him in his crib.

When I walked in, he had turned himself so that he was lying, sideways, face down.


So, he's consistently flipping over, from back to front, but he is, as yet, unable to flip those 23 pounds back.

I turned him back over and straightened him out, only to watch him flip back over like a fish out of water, grunting angrily at the crib's hard mattress in disgust as if to say GET OUT OF MY WAY, WENCH! YOU DISGUST ME!

He repeated this maneuver throughout the night, with me half-sleep worrying in the room next door.

Fortunately, whenever he would flip over, his head is strong enough to move to one side to assure an open airway.

I asked BioMom why he would continually do something that was guaranteed to end in frustration.

Because he can.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Friday, May 26, 2006

The Yoga Master

More on the Name Game

We're watching our friend's four-year-old girl this weekend while they enjoy the Big Apple.

She is lovely and, despite never having had a sleepover before, she's doing just fantastic.

She regularly, however, has been calling her parents by their first names to us. BioMom told them about it on the phone last night and they said that they very much preferred that she did not do that, and they often discourage her from doing so.

I wondered if kids of GLBT parents refer to their parents by their first names while they are in the company of others in order to be clear as to whom they are referring.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

What Do These Numbers Have In Common?




Answer: Minutes of crying before falling asleep on three consecutive nights.

Now, more interestingly, check out these numbers.

0, 150
0, 45

These represent his naps yesterday. The first number is the minutes crying, the second is the minutes asleep.


Friday, May 19, 2006

What Me, Worry?

Did anyone see David Gregory's interview with President Bush on the Today show this morning?

It went something like this:

Gregory: How do you respond to the fact that your approval ratings are now below Nixon's during the Watergate scandal?

Bush: [chuckles to himself]

Gregory: Are you laughing?

Bush: No, I'm not laughing.

Gregory: So, how do you explain your approval ratings?

Bush: We're at war!

I'm so sick of the tautology of this administration. Does he think he is the first and only President to go to war? Does he think that the American public has no opinion about this war? Does he completely dismiss our opinions as if we are a bunch of children?

His insouciance has become intolerable.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

The First Supper

The Swinger

Since it is finally thawed here, we've been spending a lot of time in the back yard on the swingset with the neighbors in the evenings. Mr. Big's got his little swing, the SYO and her compatriates have swinging contests and the rest of us kick around a soccer ball, getting eaten up (already) by the soon-to-be occupying force of mosquitos.

Last night the SYO was attempting a dismount when, at the last moment, after having taken her hands off of the swing's ropes, she changed her mind and stayed on the swing for another cycle.

It was one of those slow motion moments for me, sitting on the hammock across the yard with the baby.

I thought to myself: Oh, she decided not to jump. Then: Uh oh. This is not good. She's let go of the ropes!

On the back end of the swing's trajectory, she fell out, landing on all fours. We exchanged an agonizing look that felt like it lasted for 3 minutes.

Later, she comes up to me and says:

That swing is my boyfriend.

[as casually as possible. Where does she get this terminology?]

Yeah. And he DUMPED me!


End-Of-Semester Sighs and Anxieties

I submitted my grades electronically last night at midnight or so.

What's exciting now is to wait for the equivocating emails to roll in.

"What grade did I get on the final?"

"How could I have goten an ____ [put in whatever grade you like -- there's always someone who is dissatisfied]."

This is probably the hardest part of my job -- demarcating differences between ABs and Bs, for example, and then explaining that to the students. This semster I had to ruin one very bright woman's 4.0. Of course, it is not my fault per se. But it all seems so arbitrary in some sense. I could have asked different things on the final, for instance. Also, how much does one grade matter. At the margin though, it was this grade that dropped her average below perfection. Alas.

Along similar lines, the pediatrician yesterday gave us a lecture on letting Mr. Big cry himself to sleep in order to teach him how to pacify himself.

Its hard to be the bad guy.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Why I Should Have Become a Sociologist Rather Than an Economist. . .

It is NEVER the girls that get crushes on me. . .

I just got this email today:

Hey [Blogauthor] ( I hope its alright if I call you [Blogauthor]), or Dr. [Blogauthor's Last Name],
as you can see, this is (Insert smart but awkward student's name) from your 2:15, T,H, class. I was wondering what you are doing with your spare time this afternoon. If your not busy and would like to hang out, I just have a few questions that need clarification. Ive never asked a Professor to do this before, but I enjoy your company regardless. Im also not sure what professors do with their sparetime (busy?,not busy?) well I hope you get this within the next 4 hours and hit me back

Five Months Old

Or, what I do with my spare time (see above).

Monday, May 08, 2006

On Becoming A SAHM

So after three finals this week, attending graduation on Saturday and (lest I forget) grading those finals, I will embark, officially, on my next personal adventure (albeit one with a defined horizon): Stay At Home Momdom.

Aside: I'm still fairly uncomfortable with the "mom" label and was even regretting labelling this blog with that title. Maybe it should be Diary of a Lesbian Step-Father?

As in "Father Knows Best?"

Oh. . . . "Father" is even more problemmatic.


As in "Whose your Daddy?" Okay that's just gross. Reserved for middled aged men in their fling-stage.

SAHM (pronounced "Sam")?

I've seen other lesbians each use a variante of "Mom", like "Mama" and "Mommy", but we're in the process of trying that and I just get confused.


No response.


No response.

"Oh, do you mean me?"

Or, "Let's go to the front door! Mama, I mean Mommy, I mean Mom is coming home!"

I've also seen other lesbian couples create really fun terms like "Baba."

I like this better on its face, but I can't help but giggle every time I try to get the SYO to call me something funny. I think its because I regularly introduce myself to her friends with really weird titles like "GooneyGooGoo" or something.

So far "Mamoo" is sticking. But again, I end up calling BioMom that as often as not.

Honestly, these are the first labels in my life with which I've had this much trouble.

We've got to come up with a new collective term for the Non-Biological Lesbian Partner-Parent. How about NBL-Double-P pronounced: "Enn-Be-ell-double P"? As in "NBL double P? CAN I HAVE SOME MORE ICE CREAM? . . . WHY NOT? WHEN?"

Somehow what they call me in this context seems of secondary importance.

Anyway, I am excited and terrified all at once. I am on FMLA in the fall and teaching part time at Macalester in the spring. A true break from working - if you call what I do "work" (I am a labor economist, so, because I receive such little disutility from the activities associated with my job, it's hard to really call it work -- certainly in the Marxian sense -- which, ironically nearly all Neoclassical economists have adopted(.

Of course, a break sounds lovely.

And I've got a reading list that's through the roof.

Oh, and those paper ideas to finish up.

And that book idea I've always had.

But what is wonderful and impossible about this particular break is that none of that is entirely possible.

Well, maybe if I were brilliantly efficient and could really accomplish something in the hour-ish chunks he gives us.

So its this strange place of just being. Taking care of the now five (!) month old, his sister and BioMom. Feeling itchy that I SHOULD be getting more done but unable to effectively jam in little chunks of time.

So yeah. I'm terrified.

But also thrilled.

Oh What People Will Say When They Don't Have to Identify Themselves

A colleague of mine brought in an interesting speaker a few weeks ago that set off a firestorm in the local rag.

Check out an article about the event and the discussion that ensued here. Note: the discussion moves from bottom up.

It is easy to forget that there are people out there that think this way.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

B(u)y The Book

Today the SYO and I went to a local bookstore to hear Kate Dicamillo speak.

Grandma had given her The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, which was a lovely little story. Grandma sent her postcards along the way (as we read the book) that depicted the rabbit's journey.

We took her copy in to have it signed and I encouraged the SYO to, if she felt comfortable, ask the author anything that she was curious about, regarding the book. To be honest, we hadn't done much research. Sure, we watched the movie Winn-Dixie and we had read the Edward Tulane book, but that was really it. And, I didn't really brief her about such an event. But she seemed interested, so we went.

We got there a little late and she maneuvered her way to the front only to come running back to me:

Someone else has a book just like mine!

Clearly, she had missed the point. There were HUNDREDS of copies of ALL of the author's books conveniently on hand for purchase.

Surprisingly, she got a question in in the general Q and A:

So, how'd you come up with the idea?

The author seemed nonplussed:

Let's cut to the chase then, why don't we?

Another book of interest was just published and contains an essay by The Other Mother. Check out Confessions of the Other Mother : Non-Biological Lesbian Mothers Tell All.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006