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Jul
24
2007

A few weeks ago, my husband and I decided to grab dinner at Gusto in the West Village. There were three young women sitting next to us and they were chatting about their age. One woman said, “I used to think seventeen was old. But now I realize it’s the perfect age, not too young and not too old.” I put my fork down and immediately had to take a swig of sauvignon blanc. And then another big gulp. These girls weren’t even half my age. Wow. That’s painful.

I’ve never been one to age gracefully. At nineteen, I was convinced that I was getting wrinkles. At twenty-two, I felt sorry for one of my roommates because he was so much older than I was. At the time, he was the debilitating age of twenty-six. As I entered my late twenties, I dreaded the possibility of being single and turning thirty. Of course, I was completely unattached as I waved goodbye to my twenties. Then earlier this summer, I entered my late thirties and forty is now calling out to me like an evil siren.

We all know aging is the best case scenario. It’s the fortunate ones who get to discover the grey hairs, the wrinkles and the sun damage. But still, I just got my invitation to my fifteen year Tulane college reunion. Are they serious? Wasn’t it just a few years ago that I was peeing with my girlfriends behind the bank at Rendon Inn so we didn’t have to wait in the bathroom line or playing pop-a-shot at Fat Harry’s or dancing and mugging at A.T.’s? Turns out, Rendon Inn is no longer the night’s destination for college kids and A.T.’s (along with those cheese fries) is gone. Sigh.

At least, my husband and my two daughters still think I’m young, fun and cool. And to be honest, I wouldn’t want to be seventeen again. Even if I could eat at restaurants like Gusto on my parent’s credit card. I had too much anxiety back then. But I would definitely take just one more New Orleans night with my college girlfriends at Rendon Inn and A.T.’s. I can still taste the cheese fries.


Jul
21
2007

My 2 ½ year-old daughter should be one of those CIA operatives who can coerce information out of prisoners through verbal torture. She is slowly, steadfastly driving me insane. Her technique is so simple. She does it with one word: why?

All day long, for 12 straight hours, and nothing I say can make it stop. It’s the repetition that makes me want to throw myself into the Hudson River just so I can get a few moments of serenity. One of her favorites is, “why does daddy go to work?” So I try to explain, “Daddy goes to work so he can make money. With money, we buy things like cheddar bunnies, yogurt and ice cream.”

But apparently that answer is insufficient. Within a few minutes, Dylan wants to know, “why does daddy go to work?” In an effort to keep my mind energized and to not suffer agonizing boredom, I offer up these reasons throughout the day.

“Daddy goes to work to bring home the bacon.”

“Daddy goes to work to pay the mortgage so we can live in the manner we have become accustomed to.”

“Daddy goes to work to make money, so we can buy things, which helps keep the American economy strong, which means the United States continues to be an economic powerhouse on the world stage.”

Dylan stumbles through the words “economic powerhouse” to inquire why that is the case.

“Dylan, no more questions today. I love your curiosity but mommy is tired. We’ll ask more questions tomorrow,” I tell her sighing deeply.

“Why?” she asks. Oh my god. She is killing me.


Jul
20
2007

My city dog Martini is going on holiday in Southern Connecticut for two weeks. She is planning to do some running, sniffing, playing and maybe even catch up on her reading. Martini says, with her black coat, the city is just too hot this time of year. She needs to get out and breathe some country air. She might decide to move out there if she can find a place that fits her canine needs.

This is what I tell myself. In reality, our 4-year-old lab is doing a two week trial period with a family that will hopefully adopt her. She is sitting right here at my feet and I already miss her. Martini was a handful from the very beginning. I picked her out at a Long Island animal rescue league when she was three months-old. Even as a puppy, she was so elegant and beautiful. Very Audrey Hepburn-esque if you can imagine the late actress as a dog. Beautiful but insanely, crazy hyper. Four years later, she still has so much energy that we had to hire a professional dog runner to run her five miles a day. I do realize that my dog is in better shape than either me or my husband Rick. Rick wanted to adopt a different dog from the shelter. He liked this puppy named Lucky Girl. I’m sure Lucky Girl does not have a personal trainer. In fact, I’m sure she is asleep right now.

One day, we finally decided that Martini deserved more room to run around and play. She deserves to be a dog, not spend her life in 1,200 square feet. I don’t know what to tell my toddler Dylan. I don’t know what to tell myself. We are going to try to let her go so she can be happy. Sometimes it’s the crazy ones we love the most.


Jul
18
2007

Yesterday, as I was pushing my daughter to preschool, I suddenly brought my stroller to a halt. A clothing rack, packed with dressing gowns and aging frocks, was blocking the entire sidewalk. Someone was moving into the Village Nursing Home on 12th Street. Did I wait patiently for the rack to be moved? No. Did I go back to the crosswalk so I could cross the street? No. While chatting on my phone and keeping an eye on my daughter, I attempted to roll the rack out of the way. In case you’re not aware, full clothing racks are very heavy. Make that extremely heavy. The rack pitched forward. Despite my best efforts to hold on to it, the rack tumbled to the ground, sending hangers and clothing across the sidewalk. Clearly, we were going to be late for preschool.

As I picked up the hangers and house dresses, I had a thought. I may need to be more present in my life. Perhaps, it is not always necessary to do three things at the same time. My father was visiting this past weekend and I watched him focus on my children. He has this amazing ability to really be present for them, playing endlessly. That’s not my natural strength. I’m so much better at preparing snacks, cleaning out the stroller, organizing their clothes or whisking them off to school, to the park or to an activity.

Each night at bed time, Dylan and I talk about our favorite part of the day. For me, my best moments are usually dancing with Dylan and her sister, hugging them in our big arm chair, reading Dylan books or giving the girls extra goodnight kisses. Ironically, these are often the moments I’ve rushed through so I can get something done. But I’ve noticed something about these “to do” lists. They never end. There is always more laundry, more dishes and more errands. So I’m really going to try to be a little more present in my life. For today, I’ll let a few of the calls go to voicemail, play a little longer with my kids and I definitely won’t move any more clothing racks.


Jul
16
2007

One of my favorite pastimes (and this is pathetic by the way) is sitting down on the couch after a long day with the kids, eating Tasti D-lite (touted as All Natural but can’t possibly be true at less than 20 calories an ounce but I choose to believe it’s all natural anyway) and watching bad TV. Yes, I have other more respectable hobbies like yoga and skiing. But my love for bad TV is probably only equal to my passion for reading the New York Post.

The problem with loving crappy TV is that inevitably, bad TV shows gets canceled. And that makes me sad. My DVR series manager (and if you don’t have DVR or Tivo or some equivalent you are nuts) is a graveyard of canceled shows. My list of shows to record is like TV’s death row. I think I was one of the last six people watching “The O.C.” I still miss my friends Ryan, Seth, Summer and Marissa. I loved “Hidden Palms” (a recently canceled teen drama that was a cross between “Dawson’s Creek”, “The O.C.” and Encyclopedia Brown). In fact, “Hidden Palms” was so hidden, I think it was on the air for all of a month. At 37, am I too old to be watching shows about high school students? Wait, don’t answer that. Moving on to “Gilmore Girls.” With good acting and clever writing, this show had its heyday. But the last and final season was so devoid of any real plot that it actually hurt me to watch. Still, every week I tuned in and I was a bit melancholy when it was all over.

So my latest obsession is the reality show “Hey Paula.” This show is terrible. Every episode, Paula Abdul cries, yells at her staff and complains non-stop about her fatigue. Hey Paula, here it is straight up. Take a nap, knock off the diva/loony behavior and quiet down because your life rocks.

My husband Rick does not make me feel better about all this. The guy actually comes home from work and will watch one of his DVR saved shows like “Meet the Press” or “60 Minutes.” But I don’t care. I learned so much from Ryan, Seth, Summer and Marissa in our four seasons together. I also enjoy Morley, Mike, Lesley and the rest of the 60 minutes gang but let’s be honest, they could never hack it in the O.C.



kelcey kintner



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