jacktellslies: (circusfolk)
I tend to resist the manner in which gender is made so central to all discussions about infants and the yet-to-be-born. I understand why, however. How frustrating to find that someone you don't know at all has become central to your life! One cannot help but turn to divination for some sense of them. The deck of cards required to adequately describe a real person, a real life, would be nearly infinite. The form of divination actually used, however, is more imperfect by far than most such systems. Unless something is wrong, the ultrasound will reveal only one detail out of only two possibilities. It ignores completely the subtle gradients possible in human gender, let alone any real glimpse of a person. It would be more useful in guessing at their temperament to know that the child will come to adore the sound of a lone violin more than any other sound, or that they'll one day break their clavicle but attempt to ignore it for a week before seeing a doctor, or that they'll show a gift for woodworking. Fortunately, the mother instinctively knows more about them than whether they sport a cock already, or will have to consider buying one as a freshman in college, without the intervention of flawed technology. My niece Allyson, for example, craved cheese from the moment that she was conceived. When my mother was pregnant with me, she was overcome with an irresistible urge to watch nature documentaries. And my sister's newest little home brew seems to quite like spicy food.

That said: it's a girl! I won't bother to deny my joy and relief at the news; Ally is thrilled to have a little sister on the way. Her name is Naomi Patricia Robbins, family names both. Unless she decides to meet us a bit early, she'll be born in June.
jacktellslies: (opium den)
I asked my young niece an important question today: "Do you know what a nerd is?"

She didn't.

"Nerds are smart kids, like us. Like your mommy and Ken and me. Do you want to be a nerd too?"

"Um. Yes."

"That's probably for the best. I don't think you were going to have much of a choice."

Then I taught her to fist pound. And then she told me that she thinks drag queens are funny.
jacktellslies: (dandy)
My Dearest Allyson Rose,

Congratulations on achieving this, your most prestigious accomplishment to date: turning four! I can assure you that no one in all of human history has ever done a better job of it. Your feat will be remembered in all nations across the ages. I adore you, and eternally I will be,

Your Uncle Jack, Earl of Grey
jacktellslies: (geroges barbier mermaid)
I went to the beach, and I learned the following:

I used to be afraid of the ocean. I am still completely destroyed by the idea of the giants and mysteries it contains, however, the idea of touching something dead and not knowing it no longer really bothers me, as I'm fairly used to it. In fact, I quite liked swimming out beyond the waves just to give the ocean and all of the things in it ample time to take their revenge if they desired it. Either they didn't, or their plot is an intricate one and they are waiting.

One can't find good seafood in New Jersey, apparently. Disappointment.

Ally likes to explain that she will get older, and that when she does she will get tall. Several other things will happen once these things occur, including her obtaining a motorcycle that is pink with skulls.

Ally also knows that all pirates are girls, and that she loves her new batman and spiderman shirts.

Parker is way too good with babies. She started talking some nonsense about wanting to have some of them, if only because so many people make such terrible parents and not wanting to waste her natural tallents. The crisis was narrowly averted when we watched March of the Penguins and decided to adopt baby penguins and raise them in a snow cone machine.

My mom is sweet. Obviously.

Mary Poppins is the most amazing film of all time. I knew this when I was a child (it and Winnie the Pooh were my favourite films) but I haven't seen it since, and I'd somehow almost forgotten. I'd like to be Bert when I grow up, please. I'll decide whether or not to include that particular accent when I'm older.


I've not been using the internet much at all. I like to read books. I like you, though. How have you been?
jacktellslies: (bear girl)
I talked to Alex. There was music, and a big salad with strawberries in it. I have a secret diary on the answering machine of my friend Liz's mobile phone, and fountains are lit at night and children splash in them, and the sky roared and the universe was aligned perfectly: the safe little bombs, and the only break in the trees, and then me. My niece and my sister and her boyfriend came for a visit, and we went to one of the science museums. We played with magnets and electricity and with a glass armonica. Allyson is three, and afraid of lots of things. We offered to take her on the real train that would have taken her on a ride of four feet very, very slowly. She told us that it was too big, and that she likes small things. She claimed to have a small and pink train at grandmom's house called the Allyson Rose. She then explained that she flies by holding on to balloons. While flying, she catches birds in her hands. Upon catching the birds, she turns into one herself. She wanted to watch the kids splash in the fountain, too. Debbie came to the house, and later Courtney came, too. We watched movies: Josephine Baker in Princess Tam Tam, a weird little exercise in colonialism that I'd like to read more about, and In the Realms of the Unreal, an orphan-turned-reclusive-menial-worker's room and fifteen-thousand page novel and autobiography and photographs and tracings and collages and dreams.


jacktellslies: (Default)

August 2009

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