Monday, November 03, 2014

Soften a bit until we all just get along

At work, we had a video conference with another school.  We had done a little art swap project with them, where our kids made something and then sent directions to them, and vice versa, then our kids made their artwork, and they made ours.  We showed the attempts to follow directions and replicate art, and then the kids told each other about their respective schools.  Since Prestigius is a fancy-pants private school in the big city, and our conference pals were at a public school in a small town in a struggling state, I think the other teacher got a bit peeved at how much our kids talked about all their classes and the spacious grounds and opportunities and so on.  I said, "No, we're jealous of you!  Your school sounds great!"  At which some of my kids screamed, "No it doesn't!"

I chastised them severely for this afterwards.

Later, the adults got into a tizzy fit because some people's scheduled were inconvenienced by the video conference project, and --- mea culpa --- I failed to adequately warn them that this would be happening.  (Although I still feel that should have been the tech teacher's purview.  She is extremely half-assed and lazy.  My excuse is that I am a bonehead.)  Educated adult drama!  People with zero problems making trouble!  It would be amusing if it weren't so stupid.


LD got a sitter to watch her kids while she worked late, and she came by my place before heading home.  We were both a bit stressed out and distracted, especially her of course, and so her visit was a bit awkward, but we sat and talked and I think I made her feel a little oasis of comfort and calm.  At least I hope so.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Old lady judges watch people in pairs

Today I had to go to work because we had an Open House for prospective parents.  I wore my shiniest shirt and crisp checkered shoes.  Or possibly the other way around.  Anyway, my ostensible role was to greet any touring prospects and answer their questions about third grade. Ms. Yule had the shift before me and told me that she fielded a few queries, but since most of the prospects had children aged 0-3, really very few had any interest in finding out about third grade just yet.  So I ended up standing around like an ugly male caryatid saying barely two words to any adults.  I did engage in a bit of persiflage with the Prestigius students that were attending, but that was about it. Afterwards I stayed and got Monday's spelling words and homework ready.


But!  Before that, I drove up to LD's house.  Eyeball had taken KJr out for a fishing trip (indoors somehow, as I understand it), so I went out to lunch with the three girls.  I really like Crab a lot.  I mean, Cake is sweet too, but I have a soft spot for Crab.  LD remarked that we share the same goofy facial expressions and mannerisms.  She cracks me up with her self-aware joking.

Tonight, LD and the kids went over to 74 and Zaftig's house, with Eyeball (the Family, as they used to call themselves), for Nora's birthday party. I felt left out and mildly resentful at the entire situation that has robbed me of old friends, as usual, but I am in a much more solidly grounded place psyche-wise nowadays and getting better slowly (I hope).  Unfortunately, afterwards I heard some really annoying and disturbing stuff about Zaftig.  LD told me she was making gross jokes about vagina restoration, certainly something she is copying from her new fancy super-rich Prestigius doctor friends.  But not cool, and disturbing to LD.  Especially, as LD said, Zaftig herself has been on the other end of that joke in her life.  (TMI!!)

Much more disturbing to me is the resurrection of a very old conversation, back when this first started, between Zaftig and LD.  Desperate to sway LD from me any way she could, Zaftig dragged me through the mud.  She characterized me as a quitter ("he'll walk away when things go bad"), as miles out of LD's league, as someone who LD should know better than go near because I am toxic, as someone who verbally tormented my Ex, as someone who dated a string of young women (ha!), as someone whose Ex was a 2 on the attractiveness scale while LD is a 10 (Zaftig is about a 3; I thought the Ex was cute), etc.  All very insulting and nasty.  It only reinforced my feeling that I am just fucking done with those people.  They are entitled to their opinion, but this insane passive aggressiveness just turns my stomach.

Saturday, November 01, 2014

It only believes in a pile of dead leaves and a moon that's the color of bone

LD and I have a tenuous tradition of date night on Saturday.  She sends her kids to Dutch classes in the afternoon which is sometimes additional time for us to be together, but she gets a babysitter for the evening.  Today, she had to catch up on work during the afternoon, so we only had date night.  We both agreed that given our situation, we also need to strengthen friendships and relationship, so she invited Eyeball to go out with us.

It was a fun evening.  We hit three nice restaurants and had drinks and appetizers at each one.  Eyeball is a very blunt person with no filter.  My behavior on this night, right before February, was caused by this bluntness.  However, whereas back then I took her comments as a deliberate attack, I am reasonably confident now that she's on the side of acceptance.  She is brutally honest, but sympathetic.  For example, early in the evening, she referred to me, half-jokingly, as "home wrecker."  I shrugged and accepted it.  That is a label and one way of looking at it.  But Eyeball then said, "Of course, that wasn't a home, and there wasn't any wrecking; that's my opinion, anyway."

Later on, we were talking about tattoos and she asked me, "Didn't one of your wives have tattoos?  I mean the young one."  Anyway, it was all good-natured ribbing of the particularly biting kind that close or long-time friends indulge in.  At one point both Eyeball and LD needled me for thinking I was superior to other people (which I really don't think is true), citing the fact that for years I did not know their names or talk to them.  Well, it is true I don't pay much attention to people until they show me something that wows me.  But in my defense --- and I wouldn't say this in return to Eyeball, though Friar agrees with me --- Eyeball herself doesn't exactly brighten up the room and engage people with her warm personality.  She is well-read and travels and watches good TV, but she projects a somewhat sour or reserved exterior.  It's only after a while, as with me, that she starts to thaw a little. 

I'm really glad we went.  Eyeball is officially neutral in the Rift, but it proving to be, if not an ally, a refuge from attack.