My Postman is Better Than Your Postman

03.11.13

Friday night was a bit of a disaster. We all hopped in the car to go to Sugarfish and as we were almost there Jane yelled at one of us for something. I lost it and yelled something at her to further escalate the issue. I should have known better. I’m allegedly the adult.

We turned around and went home because I spent eight long years working in diners, bars and steak houses and I’ll be damned if I’m ever going to be the person who goes to a restaurant to fight. Those are the worst tippers and the most horrible patrons. If you’re having a bad day stay home until you can pretend to be happy.

We had dinner, Jane was sullen and Alexander was trying to cheer her up. When we’d finished she looked at me and asked if I’d take her to Hugo’s for hot cocoa. Not only did we go but we had a lovely time. She was chatty and happy and back to being the kid I’ve raised for 14 years. Things were normal again.

Until Saturday morning. There was door slamming and yelling at 8.30 in the morning. Again, this is my sweet and even tempered child. I don’t have experience with mood swings, tantrums or doors slamming. We didn’t even have a terrible twos. Nothing. We just had Friday night and Saturday morning. Mercifully at about 9am an email came through with a link to a video. It was this.

Ever since traveling with the folks from Project Aether I’ve been looking at single sex schools differently and Archer is a great match for my kid. I love everything about that school and hoped that it would be her first choice. It wasn’t and I’m pretty sure she’ll be going somewhere else but I’m wise enough to know that until we put the envelope in the mail things can change.

Jane was incredibly relieved because Archer was higher on her list than Notre Dame but not as high up as Viewpoint or Oakwood. Shortly after 9 she’d showered and we looked outside and saw two magical objects parked on the street. Mail Delivery Trucks.

Jane and I did the same thing as many mothers and daughters around Los Angeles on Saturday morning. We hovered on steps at the front door and sort of stared longingly at the trucks. I sort of nudged Jane and said, “Go ask the mail carrier if you can have your mail first.” And she declined. Too shy.

So I sort of wandered to the mail box and my mail carrier came to talk to me. He has a 15 year old daughter and wondered if we were waiting for a package, he didn’t want to disappoint Jane but we had no packages. I explained to him that we were waiting for high school acceptance letters and he gave a finger wag and a, “Why didn’t you say so?” talk. He explained that he was training a new carrier and he was slow but getting faster and was just around the corner. We talked about his daughter’s high school and then he just disappeared.

The next thing I know my mail carrier is running down the middle of the street holding envelopes up over his head and yelling, “They’re here, they’re here!” and the neighbors are looking and one of the envelopes is very very big while two of them are small. Jane runs to meet him and starts screaming Viewpoint after grabbing the large envelope from his happy hands. Our neighbors and their kids are yelling congratulations and all is right in the world.

 

It Was a Very North Hollywood Day

01.9.13

I was in North Hollywood this afternoon because I wanted to see a movie and I wanted to have a brie and jalapeño sandwich while I watched it. It’s been a tough week for the old gal. Mr. G’s travel schedule is going to be nightmarish until the Superbowl is over and then there’s a massive project that will keep him busy through August. I’m really happy that he’s happy at work but I’m fighting a bad case of the lonelies and the more I’m in it the worse it gets.

You see I have an amazing network of girlfriends and all I have to do is reach out to them. I’ve sort of failed at that recently. The holidays made me feel insular and just want to hoard time with my husband and kids and now that the kids are back to school and Mr. G is somewhere in the southeast I’m sort of stuck alone and not sure I’m ready for company. Maybe next week. You know how it is when the more you’re alone the more you want to be alone?

So today I decided to indulge myself. We spent the morning at Archer where Jane interviewed. Archer is a magnificent school in every way. I think her interview was great and I’m marginally comfortable in my assertion that I didn’t put my foot in my mouth… much. I guess we’re all a little awkward now and again?

The school interviews are weird. I sort of defer to my husband and let him do the talking. I don’t care much about the social stuff for my daughter. Socially she’s adept and every school we’ve looked at will be fine. She’ll leave with nice friends and she’ll pick the kids who inspire her. I’m looking at each of the schools and trying to determine which one will offer her the most rigorous academics without breaking her spirit. An interview with a mom who says, “Work her ass off” might not be the best interview. Or maybe it would. We’ll never know.

After dropping Jane off at school right in time for lunch I headed over to the Village Gourmet on Tujunga because they get fresh burrata every Thursday afternoon. Obviously Thursday is burrata day at my house. As I was standing there and thinking about running home to roast some beets I looked at the menu and remembered that they make stunning sandwiches. So I ended up grabbing a baguette with just a smidgen of smoked turkey and a whole lot of soft ripe brie with romaine lettuce and spicy jalapeño jelly. As I was checking out I also picked up a decadent sea salt and caramel chocolate thing that was ridiculously expensive but quite small and worth every penny. I decided to pop it all in my purse and catch a movie. Alone.

I like going to lunch alone and I enjoy matinees alone so this was sort of a trifecta. Lunch, jalapeños and a matinee. I win.

I drove past Henry’s Tacos, which is a very ordinary taco stand that is closing down, and the line was quite long. Henry’s has been at the north end of Tujunga Village for decades but the current owners are unable to keep it because of rent increases. The lines were long today (as they have been each day since the imminent closure was announced) and I just marvel because as adorable as the place is, the food is crap. Remember your school lunch tacos? That’s Henry’s. Nothing special is happening there except that it’s closing and someone with something more expensive and trendier will take the space. Leases end. Life moves on.

Henrys Tacos North Hollywood

 

So I went to the Laemmle in North Hollywood and was thrilled to see a matinee crowded. I was even happier to see that it wasn’t all old people… long story… I’ll explain another time.

I enjoyed my sandwich and chocolate and chased it all down with a Prilosec and Advil because heaven knows that wheat makes me feel like crap but lordy it’s delicious. And I watched the movie.

To my credit I think I only dozed for a few minutes in the middle and I absolutely adored it. Not Fade Away isn’t as campy as Moonrise Kingdom but it touches on all the coming of age issues that we love to romanticize. The sweetness of the movie is that the primary relationships are men and boys and there’s a simplicity to them (the relationships not the men) that makes you love the men in your life a little more. The wigs were distracting (a la Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) but the soundtrack and the flavor of the movie was totally engrossing so I was able to overlook the straw on their heads. Even though Gandolfini seems like he’s playing Tony Soprano in the trailer he really isn’t in the movie and he’s really quite wonderful in the role of a firmly middle class father in the late 60’s. This movie is worth seeing on the big screen.

I left the show feeling pampered and ready to roll up my sleeves for the remainder of the week but I also had about 45 minutes to kill before the kids were ready to be picked up from school. I did what every logical woman does. I ran over to my Ford Dealer and took a spin the C-Max Energi. Before I pull the trigger on the Lexus I want to be 100% sure that Detroit doesn’t have a better option for me. I love that car. I love hybrid plug ins (I do not love straight EVs) and I really want to find a way to make that C-Max work for us but I’m not sure I can swing it right now. I’m going to try and figure everything out tomorrow and get the first car situated. Mr. G’s car will be a whole other hassle. He wants another Jaguar… why? Obviously because he’s excited about three more years of having a car that’s like a cheerleader: fast, sexy and dumb. Yay us.

Photo credit flickr via creative commons.