Friday, December 05, 2008
Arbitrary but arbitrary Friday
From the Things I Keep Forgetting To Tell You file: when Jamie and I arrived in Colorado in mid-October, Jamie was overwhelmed by the Denver airport. He marveled at every last feature of it, and exclaimed repeatedly, “Michael, you didn’t tell me that Colorado had all this!” (You should not conclude from this, however, that I don’t tell him stuff. In Omaha, as we checked into our hotel, he claimed that I had not told him that Nebraska has taxis. I mean, please. “Omaha’s a city, Jamie,” I replied. “You know it has taxis.”) So when we pulled our car out of the rental lot, a mile or two from the airport, I nudged him and said, “check this out. This is what the airport looks like from the outside.”
It was around 8 pm, so the airport was a good deal harder to see, and we were further away than this photographer was. But despite the dimness and the distance, the effect was pretty stunning all the same. “Wow,” Jamie said. “It looks like a circus.”
I’d never had that thought before. “Why yes, yes it does,” I replied. “Or like mountains.”
“Or like sidney,” Jamie added.
“Sidney,” Jamie said.
“Who’s Sidney?” I asked, because I am thick as a brick.
“No, Michael,” Jamie said, mildly impatient now. “Sydney in Australia.”
“Oh, holy . . . yes, yes, I understand. The Sydney Opera House.”
“Yes, the Sydney Opera House.”
Jamie has never been to Sydney. But he is very observant.
But you know, I don’t want to keep harping on how clever the kid is. It’s gotta be done sometimes, sure, but there are more important things in life than being able to liken the Denver International Airport to the Sydney Opera House. Like taking care of your sick father! Yep, ever since I got back to town on Tuesday I’ve been a wheezing, coughing, whingeing wreck, shuffling from couch to bed and back to couch again. So on Wednesday, after taking aboard the sorry news that I wouldn’t be able to go with him to our weekly tang soo do class, Jamie went with Janet to the supermarket. Jamie likes heading off on his own when he goes to the store with his parents, and this time, when he met up with Janet he was carrying a quart of hot soup, which he’d thoughtfully ladled all by himself.
It was delicious, thank you. And Jamie’s a good kid.
But wait! One last thing for the weekend. With all my wheezing and whingeing this week, I haven’t forgotten about reading things on the Internets. This essay by Mark Schmitt is one of the smartest things I’ve read since the election, and it reminds me why I’m going to wait and see what the Obama Administration actually, you know, does before deciding that it has betrayed Every. Progressive. Principle. Ever. On the other hand, I have to admit that it’s been over a month since the election and Obama has still not fixed a single damn thing around here. And surely, the composition of Obama’s cabinet is more important than the question of whether the U.S. closes Gitmo and withdraws from Iraq. Moreover, as Paul Lukasiak points out in comments over at the Corrente Center for Advanced Criticism, “had Clinton won, and she’d made the same moves Obama has, the fauxgressive blogosphere would be screaming their heads off.” Quite true! We fauxgressive Obamabots have horrible double standards when it comes to pointing out that Obama and Clinton have very similar policies on a lot of issues. But on second thought, it would be kind of wrong if Hillary Clinton appointed herself Secretary of State.
Have a great weekend, everyone. Me, I’m just going to have some soup.