Cripes-a-plenty, it's been a week. The workplace is crushed by The Busy Time, and I've spent gobs of quality time sparring with Shutterfly's interface in order to design my goddamn holiday cards and my goddamn gift calendars. Shutterfly is particularly crotchety about resolution, but it waits until you've slaved your life away -- uploading and cropping, dragging and dropping, flipping and flopping, breaking and popping -- before it tantalizes you with that compelling game of Guess Which Print Will Look Like A Smacked Ass. So you re-load and re-crop and re-finagle until you know what? My family and friends love me, smacked ass or not.
As I typed that, I decided to write that inside the cards.
One interesting bit of news is that I recently met Lee Woodruff, wife to Bob Woodruff, who had a cup of coffee as World News Tonight co-anchor before he nearly got his head blown off in Iraq. (They wrote a book about it together, and he was interviewed on the The Daily Show, which I remember vaguely as some show or other.) Anyway, when you meet her you'd never guess that she's a best-selling author and a mother of four. She's just lovely and friendly and smells terrific, and I'm frankly a little smitten, and now I specifically don't want to read her book because if I did I'd have to read all about how crazy in love she is with her stupid husband who nearly died.
The other news is that I have made it through another rite of fatherly passage: I have attended my son's first holiday concert. It wasn't much, and it was everything. The fourth-grade band honked away on its saxes and clarinets for about 15 minutes, and the best part of the set was The Spazzy Kid, the one in every class, who played drums and responded to audience applause by doing the robot. Then the 100 or so kindergarteners belted out three quick ditties (complete with choreographed hand gestures), and there were so many cameras pointed at them that you'd think these kids were testifying before Congress. We all lined up along the wall, steadying our handicams with one hand and waving like idiots with the other. It was beautiful. This is specifically, exactly why I wanted to be a dad.
We met the future star in the cafeteria after the show, and after we congratulated him on his performance (no stage fright, and he knew most of the words), he looked up at me and said, "I felt like an idiot." I wanted to tell him it's too bad that a five-year-old can already be so self-conscious, and that he can draw crucial inspiration from Spazzy Kid. I want Robert to know that whenever he feels like an idiot, he'll always be my idiot.