A Quiet Time

and Taylor checks in.

Happy Birthday, Mommy. Hope the new job isn’t working you too hard.

So, I mentioned briefly yesterday that I lost my voice. I really lost my voice, though, and I can always tell when it sounds bad because the following always happens:

People wince when I say anything. They then ask if I’m in incredible pain. They swallow often when I talk, or they clear their throats, as I assume they’re wondering if they can catch my laryngitis.

People start talking quieter and quieter as we have a conversation. By the end of it, it sounds like two people whispering conspiratorially. “You don’t have to speak quietly,” I keep telling them.

This didn’t stop me from making several phone calls yesterday, though, because I’m a masochist like that.

“I kind of like it,” Tyson said. “Very Kathleen Turner.”

I always get that Kathleen Turner/ Demi Moore, and I’m not sure which one is the more desirable. I suppose it could be much worse.

I’m having that post-vacation depression where I’m sad that I’m not gearing up to have this trip again. I went and put my pictures in for developing, even my aspen pictures. D’oh! I just remembered that I asked for my Aspen pictures on CD as well, when I didn’t need them to be. Great. There’s only like, six photos on each camera from Aspen, and I’m going to be paying ten dollars for a CD on each. On one camera I snapped six pictures of Cal and two of the Albertson’s just to put pictures on the roll before I remembered that I only have to pay for pictures that actually developed. That means I’ll have a CD of photos of the kitty litter aisle.

Maybe it’ll come in handy for some splash page graphics. I don’t know.

I always end up spending more money than I wanted to.

Bonjour.

It iz I, Taylor! I got bored with the pamie’s dronings and ramblings about cash and photos and what not. I know thiz about photos: they are veryvery tasty, no?

I thought perhaps now would be a good time to tell you how I spent my summer vacation, az I haven’t had much time to check in with you lovely people and see how are you doing. How are you doing, yes? All good, yes? Bon.

Okay. So.

I spent zee begining of zee vacation trying to learn how to make zee butt noises zat Cal is so good at. Alas, I am not the trumpeter zat he iz. Oh, he can make quite zee symphony after a particularly good stolen turkey sandwich from zee garbage can. I find myself with my arms out all stretched, straining and teary, looking up at zee celing and mumbling, “Gracias, Senore.” I don’t even know what zat is funny, but Pamie keeps telling me that a cat quoting Peter Shaffer is veryvery funny. I defer to her, az her job iz zee funny-funny, not mine.

Let’s see. What else? I spent several days this summer worried that I had been abandoned. Either the Eric would be gone, or the pamie would be here. And usually when they were here all day long, there were other creatures that would be here too, ruining my pretty futon with zeir strange hair smells. Cal tries to lick off all of the foreign smells, but I can always tell it’z there. You never get that smell out of a pillow, no?

But I haven’t been abandoned, and people are constantly filling my food bowl. I learned how to get up on a few new counters. One time I was able to lick my foot without having to hold it up with my other paw. I think I am slimming down, no? It iz very easy when that other creature eats everything in sight. He has to wash himself with a rag on a stick, yes? Mon dieu! He iz hiz own country.

Other summer notables include: getting a new brand of kitty litter, re-discovering the joy of fur on a piece of styrofoam, eating turkey straight out of zee plate, sitting under a windowsill for more than six hours in a row, knocking glasses of drink over and then deciding I wasn’t thirsty anyway, and playing the “knock out the cable” game.

All in all, a very wonderful summer, no?

I’m very much enjoying our little advice feature, no? Ez fun, yes?

Send Pounce,
Taylor

We’re discussing the Time article on another forum thread. I read this article on my way to Vegas last week, and I talked about it on my last leg of the trip with my mother.

She talked about how when she got married her credit became my dad’s credit, and when she wanted to get a bank account, Dad had to sign a form first, allowing her to handle “his money.” I thought about how I was just able to get a loan to buy a car all on my own. My mother wouldn’t have been able to do that at my age. She was encouraged in school to be a nurse or a dental assistant, so that if for some reason she never got married, she wasn’t destined for a life of poverty.

I mentioned that she’s younger than most of my friends’ parents. She told me that having a child after twenty-three was pretty late to have a kid for her peer group, so most of my friends’ parents would be older than she is.

I look at the differences between what my mother had and what I have now and feel incredibly lucky. I take my rights for granted sometimes. I can’t believe that there was a time when women couldn’t vote, own land, make their own choices, or go outside whenever they wanted. Now I’m having to decide if I want a family and a career and which one should get more importance.

I have the right to not have a family, and I won’t be labelled “a spinster.” I don’t have to marry my boyfriend, and it doesn’t make me a whore. I don’t have to have kids. I don’t have to even have a career, although I think the pressure is to now be successful and independent. I have several married friends where the husband stays at home, or the wife is the primary caregiver. The only way this would have happened when my mother was my age was if the husband was stricken with some disease. We have so many choices, now. So many ways to make a family. So many ways to create a home.

I can choose to live by myself, or live with a boyfriend, or live with a child (that I either had or adopted), or get married and live with my spouse, or get married and not live with my spouse. I can have several husbands if the first ones don’t work out. I can place an ad for a boyfriend, or just pick one up for the evening. I buy my own house without any pressure to fill it with children. I can go out and watch a movie on a Tuesday night. I can get on an airplane and visit friends on the other side of the country and not be worried about “what they’ll think.”

I can play rock music, or write a book (using my own name), and I can keep my name after I’m married. I can have a separate bank account. I can be the woman I want to be, and not have to answer to anyone else.

I am the age my mother was when she had me. And here I am, completely on a different track than she was when she was holding me as a newborn. She was about to start a lifetime of motherhood. I’m still trying to figure out exactly what I want to do with my life. I’m still trying new things and figuring out who I am. Mom was already married, ready to create a new person and find out what kind of person her daughter was going to be. She was starting new life while I’m still struggling with the same one I’ve had since she gave it to me.

I’m very lucky. I know that.

I just wonder what I’m going to do with all of these opportunities.

Leave a Reply