Friday, October 2 2020

most improved baby, a lil' poke, and rodney's new book



banners/2020 10 02

Dear Journal,

Good morning, my friends. Happy Friday. Congratulations on beating out another week, and making it all the way to Friday. I'm grateful to be here, heading into a long, relaxing, cool fall weekend.

This morning, the only two people awake in our house right now are me and baby Miles. He wasn't making any noise, but instead just holding his hands and smiling. I look back on just a few months ago where the running joke was that Miles was such a difficult baby that he surely had to have failed baby school. If we're still running with that joke, then he gets a gold star for "most improved baby". I rarely hear a peep out of him anymore. Lately, his independence kind of reminds me of Maggie from the Simpsons, only minus the pacifier. He still doesn't put up with pacifiers. The only one we can get him to take is this little green one we keep in his crib, and he spits it out anyway.

"It's silly, but it calms him down," says Marissa. "I just hold it in his mouth when he's upset, and by the time he spits it out, he has forgotten what he was fussing about."

Sip. How are you doing today? How's the morning going? Today, I'm up a little earlier than usual, trying to wrap up my morning before a big meeting at 9 o'clock. My team is meeting with our Edge infrastructure team based in Dublin.

I love the folks on our team in Ireland. They're always in such a good mood. Although I have to wonder if that's because of time zones. At my 9 AM this morning, it will be their 3 PM, Friday afternoon of course, and I'm usually in a pretty good mood on Friday afternoon as well.

It will be a busy day today, for sure. A big meeting this morning. Wrapping up a quarter. Kicking off a new team structure next week. And I'm also getting a part time intern to work with over the next few weeks.

Our Thursday was pretty good. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, my new chair was easily yesterday's highlight. I was so comfortable, I didn't even make as many coffee trips downstairs as I normally do. The longer I sat in my office, the more enthralled I became with how eerily precise the fit was. The little plush head rest sits just below the ball at the base of my skull. The arm rests are somehow perfectly level with my keyboard. For a chair that I selected off amazon in about five minutes, you would think I poured a week of research into it based on how many details I got right. Sometimes the universe is good to you, and the details just work themselves out without bothering you, right?

"This is the worst chair ever," said Marissa, taking it for a test drive. "For short people." The head rest sat directly behind her head, pushing her eyes down, like she was glaring at somebody. The curve in the back was the complete opposite of her spine.

"Well I have good news for you," she said getting up. "That chair is all yours. I don't think I can ever sit in it."

As I worked upstairs, Rodney and Marissa made their way to the clinic for Rodney's lil' poke. He returned an hour later with a large mango smoothie.

"How did it go, dude?" I asked.

"I got a lil' poke," said Rodney, starting from the beginning.

"Did the doctor ask you any questions?" I asked.

"Uhhh, nope," said Rodney. "Just gave me a little poke, then I got a BIG smoothie."

"Did you cry?" I asked.

Rodney nodded.

"He kinda screamed...," said Marissa quietly. She mouthed the words bloody murder.

I wrapped up the work day. While Marissa cooked up a chicken salad for dinner, Rodney and I hung around the living room watching YouTube videos. We had a video call with Mimi and Papa. I sent Rodney upstairs to get ready for bed, meeting him a few minutes later for a bedtime story.

"Dada, let's read this book," said Rodney, grabbing his tattered Paw Patrol story book off the shelf. "This is a new book." He bulged his eyes and held the book out to me.

"What do you mean this is a new book?" I asked. "You've had this book for a really long time. Half the cover is missing."

"No, dada," protested Rodney. "It's new."

He said the same thing the night before. He wanted to read this exact book, claiming it was new.

"Alright, dude, if you want," I said, grabbing a seat on his bed. "This book is only like six pages though. But it's your story time."

Rodney grabbed a seat in my lap, raking his posse of stuffed animals on top of us, flipping the corner of his blanket over our feet.

"Rocky and Rubble," I read unceremoniously staring at the front cover. I turned to the first page. I started to laugh.

The inside of the book was covered in crayon and marker. Dark, focused, crazy scribbles. The blue sky blotted out with dark crayon. Ryder was blotted out with dark crayon. And Rocky and Rubble, front and center on the first page, had the whites of their eyes filled with with dark green and dark orange. Every square inch of color in the book was blotted out with dark crayon and streaks of marker.

"See dada," said Rodney. "It's a new book." As I read on, I began to laugh more loudly, each page more surreal and bizarre than the last. Rodney bounced on my stomach as I laughed.

"It was like some kind of psycho Van Gogh painting," I told Marissa. "It must have taken him forever, and it's even funnier thinking about how he tried to show me the day before, and I wrote him off. I was like 'no, that is not a new book, put it away'. So he just waited."

colored paw patrol book

Rodney is a funny kid. I didn't know he had the capacity to surprise me like that. Thanks for stopping by today, have a great day everyone.