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Reunions are a trippy, time travel experience. Suddenly your face to face with your past, just with a few more wrinkles, and far less bangs.

Our Staples High School Class of 1988 motto, “Was It As Good for You?”, along with, “Fornicate with ’88” (yes, really) held the promise of a rocking 20th reunion. But I didn’t really know what to expect.

The culture of high school thrives on a hierarchy – who’s cool, who’s pretty, who’s stoned and of course, who’s not cool, pretty or stoned.

But 20 years later, you don’t get extra points for smoking cigarettes in the school courtyard or throwing the best parties when your parents are away. It’s about how you view your own life. Are you happy? Is this who you wanted to be? Are you proud of the person you’ve become?

Oh ok, it’s also about how you look.

Well, maybe ALL about how you look.

So here’s me and high school gal pal Abby before our senior prom…

We kind of look 12. Are you mad I’m not showing you our hunky prom dates?

And here we are this past weekend (minus the taffeta)…

And here is me with other members of my girl posse at the reunion…

If you look closely, you’ll see contributing mama Jordana Bales.

One of the first guys I ran into at the reunion gushed over me like this…

“You look the same,” he said. “Very well preserved,” he joked.

Like I just left a botox session? Like I’m an Egyptian mummy? Like I live in a jar of pickles? Really, that is the lamest compliment ever.

I recommended that he instead use phrases like, “Wow. You look gorgeous.” and the equally popular, “How did you manage to stay so unbelievably beautiful?”

There were some strange choices – like this former classmate who put his hair into some kind of 80s inspired ponytail.

No, that wasn’t my prom date.

But mostly the reunion was about repeating this phrase, “I live in New York City, I’m married with two kids and I write a blog. So what’s going on with you?” over and over again.

Then I would head to the bar for another glass of sauvignon blanc and repeat life summary to familiar looking girl from 9th grade algebra class who’s also standing at the bar.

Once in awhile to mix it up, I’d mention that I do a tremendous amount of fly fishing in the Hudson River. My exact phrase, “You fly fish? Me too. In fact, I fly fish the sh-t out of Manhattan.”

But mostly, I tried to stick to things that were actually true.

So how do I feel now that it’s over?

I think I’m just sort of relieved that I’m no longer in high school. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness.”

No, I never read the book. Just the cliff notes. Did anyone really read the book?

But I think Charles Dickens got it right.  He was definitely talking about high school.


On Wednesday morning, I asked myself one of the big parenting questions of our time….

Is it acceptable to bring a cup of coffee on a school tour?

My husband and I are currently looking at public and private school options for my daughter Dylan. This means an abundance of school tours across the city. So the coffee question is at the very front of my caffeine-starved mind.

Is it inappropriate in some way? Like showing up to a job interview in jeans, with an Egg McMuffin and a newspaper?

Somehow it just felt wrong.

But as I trudged down Hudson street, at 8:20 on Wednesday morning, to attend my first Kindergarten public school tour, I felt the desperate need for a little caffeine.

I decided to grab a small cup and toss it if it seemed disrespectful in anyway.

When I arrived at the school, all the parents were ushered into a big room and one of the parent coordinators stood up to welcome us to P.S. 3.

He had dyed red hair.

A goatee.

8 thick, silver rings on his fingers.

And he was holding a cup of coffee.

Ok, I was definitely in the clear.

Then I looked around at the other parents and spotted actor Paul Rudd, also holding a coffee.

Now I’m way in the clear.

If Paul Rudd can drink coffee, I can certainly drink coffee. Isn’t that the celebrity transitive property or something?

Speaking of celeb sightings, the other day I strolled past Debra Messing of “Will and Grace” fame. How funny and entertaining and sassy and red headed is she? I just love her. I am so glad I was wearing lipstick. Can you just imagine seeing Debra Messing and your lips are all naked and chapped?

I spotted her on 12th street, in front of Industria Studio, in full hair and makeup, wearing a bathrobe and smoking a cigarette.

I guess she was on a break and in the middle of a wardrobe change for some kind of shoot.


They drink coffee! They wear bathrobes! They smoke cigarettes!

They really are just like us!

Why do I ever doubt US Magazine?

mama bird notes:

As many of you know, my friend Kristin recently lost her husband Mario to cancer. Next week, I am joining her, and their 4-year-old daughter Julia for the Light The Night Walk.

The walk pays tribute to the thousands of patients battling blood cancers and remembers the ones who have lost their lives. Please consider donating on Kristin’s page.

Also this month, Silicon Valley Moms Group has partnered with DonorsChoose.org, to help spread the word about the lack of funding and support needed for our public schools. Through DonorsChoose.org, teachers request what they need and explain how the money will benefit their classroom. Please consider giving a donation (even a small amount) to one of the following regions…

Thanks mama birds!


I really wish November would just hurry up and get here already. Even after an historically long primary season, it’s the last few weeks that seem to be endlessly dragging.

Yes, I hunkered down and watched the town hall debate between McCain and Obama.

Sure, the networks had some cool angles where I could see the socks and shoes of undecided voters. And it was fun to see how many times McCain uttered, “my friends.” Please tell me someone counted. And I’m endlessly intrigued by Obama’s pronunciation of Pakistan (Pah-kee-stahn).

But really, do we need a third debate? What could they possibly say that we haven’t already heard?

I am just so anxious about the election. And I am completely drained from the political pundits examining every nuance of this horse race. Yet, at the same time, I’m completed addicted to it.

I am getting very close to canceling my subscription to the New York Post. Their political reporting is so egregiously biased that it makes me furious every morning.

But then I think about Page Six with all that fun celebrity gossip.

And I really like the TV section.

And the Post’s headlines are just so damn clever and funny sometimes.

But wait, what about journalistic credibility? What about delivering the news in an unfiltered way? I should really cancel.

But I can’t. I am so WEAK. I won’t even give up my tabloid addiction?! Damn, what happened to the generation who sacrificed everything for the greater good of their country?

My husband Rick, who is an independent, has chosen his candidate. Since he’s a journalist, he won’t publicly disclose his preferred ticket.

But we did have the following conversation…

“Honey, if you had your choice of the Phillies winning the World Series or your candidate winning the election, which would you chose?” I asked.

“Umm….” Rick gave the question deep thought.

“Well, it’s a tough one, ” Rick said as he mulled over the issue some more.

“HONEY! We are talking about the future of this country. You’d prefer some BASEBALL team win the world series than have your chosen candidate be in the White House?!!!!! That is totally, ridiculously insane.”

“Well, it would be a really tough decision but I guess I’d give up the World Series for the Presidency.”

I’m not sure I believe him.

mama bird notes:

For New York area mamas, are you looking for something rockin’ do with your kiddos this weekend or next? Check out this off-broadway show described as “Sesame Street meets the Go Gos.” Click on drooling over this to read more.


I really did learn something new this week.

No, no… not during the VP debate.

No, no… not during my first kindergarten tour which I promptly forgot about and never attended. Scratch that school off the potential schools list.

No, no… not during MSNBC’s Morning Joe. By the way, Jessica Ryan was really the only one who jumped on the Joe Scarborough hunky bandwagon with me. Although Calikim at least gave me a lukewarm “sort of hot.” But I’m thinking Calikim just sort of pitied me for my pathetic crush.

Hmm… maybe you all don’t consider morning news an aphrodisiac?

Anyway, here’s what I learned…

It really IS possible to step in your own kid’s poop.


Right there at the playground, Miss Summer needed to be changed. Just a routine diaper changing on a park bench. Nothing out of the ordinary there. Except somehow, during the changing process, some of what I’d just carefully cleaned up, slipped out from the diaper and onto the rubberized turf.

I did not notice.

And then I inadvertently stepped in it.

I STILL did not notice.

And then I mashed my foot into it again.

At which point, my husband pointed out what was going on.


Seriously, crap all over my cute shoe.

And earlier that morning 4 year-old Dylan told me that she likes to eat everything she finds on her face… sleepies in the corner of her eyes, snot from her nose, pretty much anything she can hunt down between her forehead and her chin.

So let me understand this exactly – the kid won’t touch a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  But eye crust?   Mmmm. How insanely, ridiculously gross.

The unexpected bonus?  The Biden/Palin debate doesn’t seem so hard to stomach after all.

mama bird notes:

Contributing mama Karen Palmer Bland is starting to feel sort of, kind of, well, old. She wonders what happened to her plan to be a YOUNG mom. Click on “contributing mamas” to read more.

Are you a freak about sunscreen? Me too. Check out the new Bethesda sunscreen soap. Cool idea, practical and smells delish. Click on “drooling over this” to read more.

Contributing mama Jordana Bales is the winner of the Fresh Direct giveaway worth $50. Yahoo Jordana! Yahoo Fresh Direct! Yahoo free groceries!


Like it’s not troubling enough that my husband has a crush on Sarah Palin. Now he is convinced that the feelings are mutual.

You know all that winking she did at the camera last night?

Rick, honey, I don’t know how to break this to you but she wasn’t winking at you. She was winking at the American people because doggone it, she’s fighting for them.

Of course, Joe Biden promises to do that too. Just with far less eye twitching.

I really thought Biden got into a groove during the debate, especially when it came to the subject of foreign policy.

You know what guy I’m talking about, right? Biden? He was the one on the stage with Sarah Palin. Off to the left. Oh, I’m absolutely sure you saw him. The one with the nice smile. Well, trust me, he rocked it on the topics of Iraq and the fight against terrorism.

The governor of Alaska certainly avoided any major missteps and held her own last night.  The debate structure kept her from being challenged much, even when she completely avoided answering questions or gave vague, confusing and awkwardly phrased answers.

Like when the moderator tried to ask her about bankruptcy courts and Palin answered, “I want to talk about, again, my record on energy versus – your ticket’s energy – ticket also.”

Umm… what?

I would have preferred more back and forth between the two candidates so we could have actually gotten some substantive information, and not as much rehearsed campaign rhetoric from the two of them.

Frankly, I think the McCain campaign should take a page from “Singing in the Rain” and hire someone to secretly dub in a different voice over Palin’s.  (Note to Senator McCain:  Debbie Reynolds is still alive and well.)

Palin is very telegenic but I just find her voice so terribly grating and snarky. Throw in those folksy phrases and she just doesn’t seem like my kind of vice president.

Not to mention president.

Nearly one in three vice presidents go on to become the president.

John McCain is 72 years-old, with recurring melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.

President Sarah Palin.

See why this election is so important?

You betcha.

kelcey kintner