Okay, so about two weeks ago, after the NPR interview, I was sitting in front of my computer trying to get some shit done. And by “shit” I mean Black John, and by “done” I mean finish the fucking book (which is, thank Goddess, finished!) before the world of despair, drug use, and cynicism I’d created actually swallowed me whole. (Seriously– my submission letter started with, “Hey, Elizabeth, remember how in Dex in Blue I created a seriously irredeemable character and thought, ‘Whew, I’m glad I don’t have to deal with that asshole again!’? Well guess who my new protagonist is!”) So, well, I was… I was elsewhere at this point in time. It was hot outside, cool inside, I had my soda, my pleasant buzz from the NPR interview, and I was good to frickin’ go.
And I got a phone call, from the leader of the kids’ dance studio, asking for help. She needed an extra backstage mom, someone “Calm, competent, who could sort of take care of things,” to jump in and lend a hand.
Well, yeah. First thing I asked, right? “And I’m the first person who came to mind?”
Apparently so– yeah, surprise to me too!
Anyway, asking me at that juncture was a little like asking Tony Stark to remember a dinner appointment when he’s either eyeballs deep in a project, or off fighting aliens. He’ll say yes with all the intentions in the world, but when it’s time to execute the plan, he’s just not quite what people thought he would be, because, well, he’s Tony Stark.
So I am like, problem child of the backstage moms.
I am bossy. I am not the principle mom, but I still give orders. Even if I’m ordering the principle mom’s kid, I order.
I think outside the box in an environment where the box is sacred. I played Simon Says with the kids the other day, because the kids were bored shitless. One little girl not playing got her hand stepped on. Apparently (I don’t remember this– it might not have been me, but it might have, because, hello, Tony Stark) asked her if it was bleeding, or broken, and if she was okay. She said she was.
And her father became upset because there was no giant bandage and hue and cry, and we are now banned from Simon Says.
I need my phone. Seriously. Need my phone. I had two business dialogs tonight, on my phone, during quiet moments. I kept contact with my husband, who was working as a security officer, on my phone. I am not on vacation. Phone is necessary. Need.
We are not supposed to have our phones. *smirk*
So, here I am, the full bloom of adulthood, and I am experiencing that same surge of rebellion I showed when I was teaching.
And I am reminded that the one consistent subtext of pretty much all of my work is that authority is unreliable as a rule, and to be watched closely as a guideline.
Holy crap. I am a bad influence around children. I’m an icon of rebellion.
Like Tony Stark, but, you know. Not a genius. And broke. And, you know.
He’s Iron Man.
We went to my parents’ house the other day– the little kids stayed the night and played in the pool. When I came to pick them up, I saw my parents had managed to accrue a hummingbird. He built a nest in their wrought iron moose (you were wondering what that was, weren’t you?) and when people (like me) don’t spazz her out, she flies back and forth among my stepmom’s flowers.
And I’m sort of reminded of MacBeth– when tender-hearted old Duncan sees the birds at MacBeth’s and says, “Look, the temple-haunting martlet is here! This bird only hangs out in good places!” Of course, Duncan was blind, and those birds were ravens, (according to MacBeth) and they were croaking his doom, but I’d like to think the my parents are nicer than MacBeth. Because they got themselves a hummingbird. Cause he thinks their place is cool.
And I am literally falling asleep typing this– and tomorrow is going to be harder. So, uhm, enjoy the hummingbird, and remember– Tony Stark’s blog is way cooler than mine, and probably monetized.