Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Well, December 1st proved to be something of a desultory start to the final month of 2008. Not sure why it didn't pan out. Yesterday's appointments were cancelled with the old we're-not-done-with-our-remodel-yet-and-not-ready-for-December-shade excuse. Then the new Christmas lights didn't twinkle appropriately. And The Little Ditchman had her first visit to the dentist, which by all accounts was like that Nazi dental torture scene out of Marathon Man. You never expect Josef Mengele to be hired as a children's dental specialist, but I suppose if you ask any child, they'll tell you that they're all Mengele. Later, Mommy and child went to the park where the memory was blocked out, forthwith. No, really. Last night I repeatedly asked her about the dentist, and she repeatedly told me about the park.

Also, I hurt my thumb some time ago. I think I sprained it, whatever that means. There is no swelling, only pain. It's the kind of thing where if you asked a doctor about it, he'd tell you there's nothing wrong with it. But what about all the pain, Doc? **looks at you with disbelief and contempt** Well, stay off of it then. So no thumb push-ups for me for a while. It hurts when I do anything, excepting -of course- typing and mouse rolling. It hurts when I turn the ignition, wash dishes, hold the baby. Hey, it even hurts when I hold a beer -but if you can stand the pain then, you can stand the pain now: so, hold the baby. No winners.

Yeah so, it was a Monday. We did get a tree, though! A nice one, too. Went with Douglas Fir this year, even though we usually go Noble. Tossed it in the back of the truck and brought it home, sore thumb and all, and set it up in the living room and then went to bed. Didn't bother decorating it, which is the first time that's happened. Why decorate it, anyway? The thing looks beautiful as is. It's a special tree, of course, unlike the tall, bristly, overpriced piles of sticks and needles it was surrounded by. Nay, this one has a special sheen to it that called out clear across the lot to us, beckoning our little family to take it home and set it up near the fireplace, where it will live out its last few days shedding its spiny self into a dusty pile. Said dusty pile will somehow end up behind the couch with previous years' dusty piles -a problem easily solved if only Santa would bring me that robot vacuum I've been longing for.

Robot vacuums have come down in price and are on sale, I noticed yesterday, for $150 dollars! It's about $100 more than I'm willing to pay, unfortunately. Directly next to them on the rack were the new model super-robot vacuum, which sold for $350, (and if you can afford that, you can afford a cleaning woman.) It looked like exactly the same robot, which depressed the future. Why the thing can't bring me a beer as it sashays across the hardwood floor whisking up dust mites, is beyond me. I mean, for twice the cost it should at least come with salsa.

Mrs. Ditchman is not convinced the robot vacuum will work. Not convinced that the technology is there yet. This from a woman who complains that the current broom doesn't work quite as well as the last broom. I did meet someone who had the robot vacuum and I asked them if it worked and they didn't answer. (But I believe they had a cleaning woman, so I should ask her.) Anyway, I know little of brooming qualities, but I have just the place beneath the stairs for the robot vacuum home base. I imagine it happily emerging from its cubby, twice daily, to make it's way around the house to suck up all the cat hair, children's snacks, and last night's spilled rice, while I sit on the couch and toast it as it rolls by doing its robot work. Some day robots will do all the work, and we'll wonder how we ever got anything done.

I hope. Today we'll decorate the tree, which is human work. No robot could ever do that right. Some things will just never take the place of other things.