Monday, March 20, 2006

The Princess and the {fill-in-the-blank}

{yawn} My little one was up sick in the middle of the night. She's fine today, and I'll spare you the gruesome* details. One hint I learned, though: think carefully before you give purple blackberry smoothie as a bedtime snack...

Yesterday afternoon I accompanied her to a birthday party. Not just any boring old party, though--oh, no. This was a "princess" party. Seven four-year-old girls dressed in princess costumes with be-stickered crowns, dancing to Disney music and tapping each other ceremonially with magic wands. Our household is not exactly into Disney--and I loathe all that pink "Princess" marketing they're doing--but she had a ball (er...pun not intended, but I like it now that it's there).

And me? I hung out with another mom I know, but I also spent a lot of time watching Child, secretly thrilled that out of only three girls from school that were invited, she was one. That she seemed to get along fine with the other kids. That she wasn't the one left out.

This is my secret weakness, see, my Kryptonite. I was the one excluded, all through grammar school. I went to a tiny, backwards school in a rural community, and I didn't fit in. I was too smart, too weird. I was the freaky kid who went to ballet class every day right after school. In 3rd grade they sent me up to 5th to do English and spelling, and then asked me to tell the class what I'd learned when I came back. {rolling eyes} Anyway, let's just say I wasn't invited to parties. I'm mostly over it, I think--I have good friends now who get me, thank God--but I sure as heck don't want that kind of thing happening to her. So I watch for it, and am quite giddily happy when she does well.

As to writing? I didn't touch the keyboard this weekend, but I did keep reading my research book on whores and brothels, and I had some good thinks about new scenes. I feel ready to jump in today. I'm looking forward to my lunch session!

*Word of the day: grue. I only just realized, when I typed the word "gruesome" a few minutes ago, that it must be tied to an old medieval word, grue. That's a verb (mostly used in Scotland and in north England, first recorded 1300) meaning: "To feel terror or horror, shudder, tremble; quake; to shrink from something; to be troubled in heart." So you can grue about something that scares you. I did use this one in TMT: How could I sit for hours in that little boat, on that dreadful water, when the very thought made me grue? Apparently you can be grueful or grueing as well. Go forth and use "grue"!


Anonymous said...

Dear Susan:
Hello, fellow ostracizee. I suffered the same way, off and on, through all my school years, but especially high school. I wasn't especially clever, but my parents were strict and I wasn't allowed to go out. Like, ever. (Made up for that in University, though...)So I feel your pain, and am thrilled announce my fellowship with someone like you. :o)

In re whores and brothels, I have a spare copy of Reay Tannahill's "Sex in History" that I've been looking for a good home for. (Not just everybody can appreciate a book like this, but I happen to think it's a gem.) It's very broad and won't likely be exactly what you need, but (cough) it makes for interesting reading (and picture browsing :o)), and you may find something helpful in there. I haven't got to the European section yet, but I have covered Greece, Rome, India and Asia. Send me an email if you think you'd like it, I'd be happy to mail it off.

No purpleberry smoothies. Got it!

Cindy D

Susan Adrian said...


You too, eh? {wry g} Ah well, it's the price of being different, I guess. I'm thrilled we're friends too.

And I'd love the whores book, but of course. {s}