This Week in the End of Denial, Folk Music, and Fight Club

My son has a lot of band concerts as we come to the end of the year. There are regional competitions he has to participate in; the cumulation of so many god damn hours before school and after school and on the weekends, and his band is kicking major ass through them all. 

He has to wear a tux top, black slacks, and black shoes, which makes him look awkwardly like his father (only really awkward for me, for obvious reasons I'd rather not say and make real *shudder*).

He's been wearing his dad's pants and shoes, which has allowed me to imagine him tiny, playing dress up in dad's old work outfits, and has kept reality at a lovely little bay. 

But now the band shows are coming hard and heavy, and so we took him out to get his own black dress shoes and slacks. Oh, hai, reality, your baby actually *did* grow up and no, that foot wearing a shoe one full size larger than mine now will never again fit inside my mouth. 

Matthew 13:42. That's all I'm saying about that. 

And while his father and he were busy fucking my entire imaginary life, this gongshow happened. 

    We can just go right ahead and file that under "Shit That Was Not in the Original Contract."

He sat on my knee and looked at me with those gorgeous green eyes and he promised me he'd stay little forever and I looked it up - staying little forever does not include doing Movember with all his friends next year.

The good news is that I got to have a lime and a coconut and a sleepover with my Texas bestie, which, contrary to the song, is exactly what the doctor ordered.  

I was also interviewed on ABC News about letting my kids practice MMA, which while not exactly an extreme sport by my definition, is extremely awesome and hopefully maybe a few other people will realize that.

This is me, trying to save the world - one bloody nose and molestache at a time. 

I caught you a delicious bass; wanna play me?

My kid does this thing with his hands whenever there is an uncomfortable moment in our day. He calls it Awkward Turtle and I'm pretty sure it's something he's picked up off of thems there internets, but I don't care because it's AWESOME and I'm going to use it right now.

*puts one hand on top of other*
*sticks thumbs out and spins them around in circles*
*inches turtle forward*

Oh, nevermind; ask me to show it to you next time you see me.

So there's no real seque from that post into this one, except that

A) everything is fine for now, and
2) I can't believe I didn't do that years ago, I feel *that* much better and
lastly) I have bigger fish to fry.

Fish like blogging conferences. Blogging conferences like BlogHer, which is where I work now.

Um. Yeah. I cannot believe it, either.

After, like, 87 Internet Years, Jes Ferris moved on from BlogHer and I somehow duped them into letting me take her place as Conference Programming Manager, which is so very awesome and so very time consuming that I think I will henceforth just be a Saturday night blogger, if I'm lucky. I made it all of nine days into my Highly Lofty Plan to Post a Picture Every Day and posted two whole times at my Babble blog this year so they're probably going to fire me, but that's okaysih because I really, really, really truly, madly, deeply love my new job.

Really. I'd stand with it on a mountain. I'd bathe with it in the sea.

I'm Going, Y'all! - BlissdomWhile we're on blogging conferences, I'm going to Blissdom for the first time ever, so if you're going too, I'll be the person continuously standing under something taller than she herself is, wearing rubber shoes and eating all the imitation Jesus-meat crackers I can get my hands on, just in case. Say hi, if you dare.

2012 Dad 2.0 Summit - March 8-10I'm also going to the Houston Meet-Up for Dad 2.0 summit this Thursday night at The Stag's Head Pub downtown because, ironically enough, I really need a fucking drink. That, and I think that Doug French and John Pacini are stand-up guys and fantastic leaders in the dad blogging community who are going to throw one hell of a boy's weekend out conference, and I fully support their efforts that I won't be able to attend, see: new job.

And I think that's pretty much the total summation of every minute of spare time I have from now until August 6th, which means Daphne Brogdon is going to have to keep flaring her nostrils at me for pretty much abandoning everything I was up to at my kids' schools, but that's okay because, well, frankly? She's stinking adorable when she roars her terrible roars, she says from several thousand miles away.

Volunteering At School: Do You Buck Up Or Bow Out? w/ Daphne, Janice and yours truly on Momversation.

Of Life and Lists

So, I made one of those damn life list thingies.

I was lucky enough to be able to attend the BlogHer conference this year (and luckier enough to be able to contribute to it in a small way) and though the conference was magnificent (really, best one yet, girls) and seeing my old friends again, and making new ones, was exactly what I needed right now, the very best part of the conference, for me, was the Pathfinder tracks on Thursday.

They cost a bit extra, and hogged up an additional day, but for that we got two amazing keynote speakers and four hours dedicated to our two panelists. Mine were the unsinkable Chookooloonks and Gwen Bell.

I walked out of my Pathfinder with insight, with inspiration, with questions that need answering and with a fucking life list. And I liked it.

It wasn’t so much that they sat us down and said, “You’re going to make life lists today!” as it was that they handed us journals and said, “You’re going to write something that might change your life today. We’re going to help you get started.”

Over the course of two hours, our three writing (actual writing) (with, like, pens and shit) (in mini-Moleskines) (really) prompts were a) to write a letter to our younger self 2) to write a list of the things we love and lastly, to write a life list.

Here’s the thing with the life lists that I knew already:

Writing a life list is not writing a list of stuff you want to do before you die. Writing a life list is saying aloud things you need to do so that you will have lived.

Here’s the thing about writing a life list that I didn’t at all realize:

It’s not really writing a list, at all. It’s playing free-word-association with the words “I” and “want”. I and want are really difficult words for, I’d argue, a whole lotta us. For me, personally, it’s always “you” and “need” and so, though my first 10-15 life list items were easy (See: Pshaw, I want X, X and X!), after that I hit a wall (See: Wait, what the fuck do I want with my life?).

Where am I going with the time I have left? What matters to me, really? What will complete me as a person? Where-in do my values lie? How many different ways can I incorporate coconut into this list? Can I even answer those questions?

Maybe I can’t. I didn’t get anywhere near 100, yet. It’s been over two weeks and I’m holding steady at 35, but that’s one for every year of life I’ve completed thus far, so I’m feeling pretty good with that number. And it will grow, as I do, I am certain.

And now I’m going to publish it, and give it a permanent page on this blog, partly because these things, this living, simply cannot be done alone, and maybe one of you will find something on my list that you can help me do, and maybe you’ll see something you want to do with me, and maybe we’ll all start living, together. Mostly, though, I feel it’s easy for me to hide myself in the shadow of book bindings, where I never have to look at them and let myself feel want. I’m kind of getting tired of hiding me from myself. So here is the beginning of me, 35 times over, sans snark.

Almost.

(It's after the jump, yo.)

When in Houston...

In two weeks, half of the damn internetowebosphere is going to descend on Manhattan for the annual BlogHer conference. Well, the half that I'm not on. I'm going camping with this chick for her birthday. Because nothing says, "I love and value you, and I sure am glad your momma shot you out of her chocha on this day, 24 short years ago" like making that person smell you after 3 days without a shower in the middle of a Texas summer.

If you're going, you might want to check out Mom 101's primer for bloggers hitting the big city, and Adam P Knave's ongoing primer for the big city hitting bloggers. If you're not going, well, you might want to check out The Retropolitan's summary of Cloverfield, which is damn near the best virtual tour of New York you'll ever take. Complete with horrifying monsters and equally horrifying plot developments.

Since I can't go to the conference, but I still want to take awkward self-portraits with my partners adentro crimen, I'm having a little get-together on Saturday night for anyone and anyone who wants to come. It's officially the Houston Pre-BlogHer meetup, but I like to call it Mochadad's birthday party plus. The plus being six months or so. Shut up, everyone likes birthday cake.

Morton's the Steakhouse has opened up their bar area for us and will be extending their weekday 'Power Hour' prices to us for the evening, including $5-$6 select appetizers, $5 select beers, $6 select wines and $7 select martinis (Manhattans totally included. Themes, we stick to'm).

Everyone is welcome to attend, and no, you don't have to dress like it's prom...just no hats. They're kind of weird about hats. You can get directions to Morton's from the map below, or call 713-659-3700 if you get hopelessly lost. There's a parking garage on Fannin Street and Valet out front, which is actually pretty reasonably priced.

See you there?


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