Wednesday, April 28 2021

vaccines, snowplow sams, and a wishlist for miles



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Dear Journal,

Good morning, comrades. Welcome to Wednesday. There are meetings to attend, spreadsheets to be filled out, and rundowns to be made. We have lots of things we need to circle back on - not to mention all those things that we put a pin in. Let’s just not try to boil the ocean this time, OK?

Sip. How are you all feeling? Have you managed to get a hold of a COVID vaccine yet? Marissa got her second stick yesterday. She completed the long, tedious journey back to the Racine mall for the second installment of the Pfizer vaccine. By the time she was finished and ready to reward herself with an Auntie Ann’s pretzel, the symptomatic nausea was already to setting in.

“I just picked up a crummy scone from the Starbucks drive through instead,” she said.

So far, that touch of nausea was the only side-effects she felt from her second dose. But missing out on mom for most of the day was complicated, disruptive, and exhausting for pretty much everyone in this house. We’re still not sure why we each had to drive to Racine. Our governor is on Twitter bragging about how Wisconsin is leading the nation with vaccine availability. We see Wisconsinites reeling on Reddit and Facebook about how there are thousands of appointments available. But each time we called the Wisconsin Department of Health, the best they could do for us was Racine.

“It’s funny,” recounted Marissa. “The people on the phone aren’t even from Wisconsin. I talked to a really nice lady from down south who was like ‘How about Milwaukee? Is that closer to Madison?’”

Marissa left in the middle of our lunch. Rodney was waiting at the sink with sticky hands. Miles shrieked in his high chair, beckoning for more food. Minnie zipped under my chair dragging a slipper behind her. My phone chirped, reminding me I had another meeting in fifteen minutes, but I also had a new email from the Madison Ice arena that read “Spring Classes Open for Registration”.

I set Miles food aside and quickly relocated to the computer. He shrieked in protest. I opened the link in the email, which took me to a very old website with about a zillion little fields to fill out.

“So there I was,” I told Marissa. “Fifteen minutes until my next meeting. Miles was screaming at me for more food. And their website did a full refresh every time I clicked a text field or a drop down. It was the most focused I had ever been in my entire life.”

I got Rodney signed up for the class. The “Snowplow Sams” level meets at 5 PM each Wednesday for the next six weeks. The classes are thirty minutes. Maybe it’s just me, but thirty minutes seems awfully brief. Sometimes it takes us thirty minutes just to get out the door to go for a family walk. I can hardly imagine fitting a whole ice skating lesson in that amount of time.

“I get to stand out there on the ice with him,” I told Marissa. “The brochure says they learn to skate with songs and games.”

“But only for thirty minutes,” said Marissa. I chortled. That’s when the new imaginary comedic character Super Lazy Kids Skating Instructor was born.

OK Snowplow Sams, why don’t we start by just going around and introducing ourselves. OK, sorry we didn’t get to everybody this week, thanks for coming out and drive safe.

OK, kids. Why don’t you just kind of walk around for a while, I’m going to go make a sandwich. Just do your best.

No skates today, we’re just going to focus on songs and games. Everybody grab a pinwheel.

In other news, Miles’ first birthday is coming up. What do you buy a one year old baby. “Does he have an Amazon Wishlist or something?” wrote my sister in a quick message.

An amazon wishlist for Miles. What would that look like? I was inspired enough to actually make one. The ten minutes it took me to throw together a joke wishlist for our chess club caricature of Miles was probably my favorite moment of the day. It was all worth it for a good joke.

2021 04 28 wish list

I think adding a four thousand dollar hand carved chessboard up at the top was a particularly nice touch.

Marissa got home from her shot when my work day ended. We’re not used to being apart for that long, so we spent some time just chatting on the deck. She handed Rodney a mango smoothie. “Is that my second medince smoothie?” he asked.

(Remember, we told Rodney that he was also getting the vaccine, but in smoothie form)

“That’s right,” said Marissa. “You gotta drink it all, dude.”

“The whole global scientific community has been feverishly working to get you that smoothie, dude,” I added. “Don’t waste a drop.”

We ate dinner and watched the Hawks game. The evening went by in a blur, and before I knew it we were heading up to bed ourselves. The dogs followed behind. I scooped Minnie up and put her in her crate.”

“Hey, I have a bone to pick with you,” said Marissa. “When we go upstairs for the night, why do you put Minnie in her crate so soon? I like to snuggle her before bed.”

“Because she’s naughty!” I retorted. “There was one night while you were still downstairs feeding the fish, and I swear she jumped between like twelve different things she wasn’t supposed to be chewing on.”

“But she’s so tired from today,” said Marissa. “She’ll be fine. She can come out and snuggle while we’re getting ready.”

We let Minnie out of her crate, and it only took her sixty seconds to prove me right. While we brushed our teeth, Minnie put a dozen tiny teeth marks in our shared copy of Francis Chan’s Letters to the Church.

“I told you,” I said smugly. “She’s perfect, but she’s also kind of naughty.”

“But mostly perfect,” said Marissa, finishing my thought. Thanks for stopping by today. Happy Wednesday, everyone.