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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Stranger for Candy

The Annual Halloween Parade at P.S. 150Q. They actually had the NYPD block off traffic. Although, they needed it - it was a mad house. I think it was more the parents - you know, people like me. I almost got run over by a Bartlett Milk truck trying to get a picture of my Power Ranger.

This year, both my boys were Power Rangers. It was not their costume of choice - it was more like, what's on sale. Originally, Zuki wanted to be Aang from "The Last Airbender" but for fifty-bucks? Nah, that ain't happening this year, son.

It's funny how you can gauge the popularity of a superhero by how many Halloween costumes you see of them. This year, Spiderman took a tumble to Iron Man. There were plenty of Darth Vaders, War Machines and even a Pac Man, who I mistook for a yellow M&M until a bystander told me otherwise.

And I'd like to thank all of Zuki's classmates for pointing out that Kenny was a Pirate. It was hard for me to tell, what with his Pirate hat and all. And Miriam's nun outfit was hilarious - I felt like singing, the hills are alive...with the sound of Muuuucus. Actually, I was going to wear a nun outfit for Halloween the year I was pregnant with Zuki but I thought religious fanatics might not think that was funny.

And can we talk about the Princesses? You can tell I'm jealous because when I was a kid, they didn't sell ready made Princess costumes. If you wanted to be a Princess for Halloween you either had to have a Fairy Godmother or a seamstress for a mom. I got to wear my dad's Karate gi with his actual Black Belt. At least it kept the bad kids from pelting eggs at me.

Without further ado, here are some pics of the P.S. 150Q Halloween Parade.

 Note the police van on the left blocking traffic - mostly speeding police cars - from plowing down kids in all their Halloween splendor.
 Note the police van on the left blocking traffic - mostly speeding police cars - from plowing down kids in all their Halloween splendor.

Samu - maskless Blue Power Ranger




Ray Nakajima Iron Man


Taichi War Machine
Should a Clown be leading a Motley Crew?
Louis Nakajima Spiderman on Harry Potter escorting detail
Joy, the Brooding Witch
Zuki is fourth from the left - the costume with Moobs. And that's Kenny, the hard to discern Pirate next to him.





Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Interrupting Shark

My kids love to tell the "Interrupting Cow" Knock Knock joke that goes:

Knock, Knock

Who's there?

Interrupting Cow

Interrupting Cow wh-

MOO!

I figured it's the rude, interrupting behavior executed by an animal that really gets them going.

So when "Deep Blue Sea" was on the other day, I thought the kids might get a kick out of the only scene of the movie that I remembered - the part where Samuel L. Jackson gets eaten. The first time I saw it, I thought the scene was hilarious because he's giving his big motivational speech in typical S.L.J. style, only to be rudely interrupted and devoured by the ginormous shark.

The first time may have been hilarious, but this time...I was in stitches. You see, I'm a real stinker so I told the boys to really concentrate and watch the scene closely. Their eyes were glued to the screen and their hands gripped tight to their knee caps and you could see the hairs on their neck standing on end...waiting...watching...concentrating. Then Boom! The shark sprung out of the water and grabbed the Negotiator in his jaws and both my boys jumped and instantly started to cry.

"Aw, c'mon guys - don't cry..." I said, feeling a little guilty that it startled them that badly. "It's funny."

"NO-IT'S-NOT," Zuki yelled.
 
I looked over at Samu and he had tears streaming down his face, his mouth was gaping open in a full out bawl. "Turn it off, Mommy! Turn it off!"

Of course, I turned off the TV and they settled down pretty quick. But the only thing on their minds was the shark who ate Jules Winnfield. Why did he eat him, is he okay, does the shark swim in Aruba, etc., etc. So, to ease their terrorized minds, I mimicked the scene to show them where the humor was.

"The big guy says, We're not gonna fight anymore...we're gonna seal off this area and- CRUNCH!" I clapped my hands together for effect and this time, the boys became hysterical with laughter.

There's that rude, interrupting behavior executed by an animal thing again. It went on for the rest of the weekend and it's still going on. The plus side is, they've developed an interest in sharks...and other animals that eat man.

Do tigers eat man? Maybe. How about wolves? Nah, never. How about crabbies? Only if he's wearing concrete shoes because he fell behind paying the Don. What about giraffes? What about em? Mommy, answer the question!

I saw no end. So instead I posed a question to them. "Do you know what Man eats?"

"What?" They asked in unison.

"Interrupting Cows."

Monday, October 18, 2010

Samu And The Rude Frog

Leave it to a kid's birthday bash at an interactive theater to teach me something new about social conditioning. At the end of the day, the party had me wondering all sorts of things from Black Cinderellas, the complexity of girls to my boys living up to their name. And the most important lesson of all, that birthday cakes from bakeries taste so much better than one from BJ's.

We all enjoyed a fantastic birthday party for Isabel and Aedan on Sunday. It took place at the Galli Theater in Midtown Manhattan. The theater company performed the Frog Prince, which most children know now as "The Princess and the Frog" thanks to Disney. Now, here is where Black Cinderella comes in.

I used to wonder if Disney World ever hired an African American woman to be Cinderella at Cinderella's Castle? I mean the Rockettes had to get with the program, why can't Disney? So, although I think it's about time Disney incorporated an African American Princess Tiana in their Princess Brigade, I'm also annoyed that she has to be a frog throughout half the movie.

I hope she shows up at Cinderella's Palace saying, "Hi, I'm the token Black Princess!" And I won't even get into cross-dressing Asian Princesses who stereotypically know Kung Fu. Can you tell I'm a little cynical when it comes to Disney?

Fortunately, the play was not Disney's version. In the play, our Princess drops her precious golden ball in a well and strikes a bargain with the Frog who lives in it. Should he retrieve the ball for her, she will grant his fee of having a drink from her Royal Cup, dinner from her Royal Plate and one night in her Royal Bed (ho, ho, ho!).

Our heroine had no intention of keeping her word. And here is where I discovered that Black Widows start off as eight-year old girls. When the Princess consulted with the audience whether she should keep her promise, the little ladies of the audience were overly emphatic coaxing the Princess to renege on her part of the deal. Meanwhile, Zuki flashed me a worried look.

"You can't break a promise, right Mommy?" He asked.

I nodded my head and saw that most of the other boys were quiet. They knew better than to argue with a woman when she had her mind set on getting something. It didn't matter because the Frog was just as determined to collect his fee. He interrupted the King and the Princess during dinner.

Now, throughout the play, Samu was stuck on Daddy's lap. He had not warmed up to the interaction between the audience and the actors until the Frog displayed his awfully rude behavior at the dinner table. Slowly, Samu slipped off Daddy's lap and made his way to the aisle. Then he crawled under a chair until he was in the front row.

Then zoom-zip. He ran onto the stage and chased the Frog around the table.

"I'm gonna kill you!" Samu stated striking his most fantastic Power Rangers pose.

The Frog, in good jest, allowed himself to be pursued and I was laughing so hard, I forgot how to work my camera. But I managed to get the last nine seconds of it.


video

Following the show, the performers mingled with the kids and when the Princess greeted Samu she said, "So, you're my brave little Frog Killer."

Brave, I laughed to myself. His name is Isamu and it means "Courageous." Guess I should have picked something that meant "money-making-mogul-who-takes-care-of-his-mama's retirement."

Anyway, he was a bit enamored by the beautiful Princess' remark. "Yes," he replied. "Can I have some pizza?"

Samu meets the actor who played the Frog and has no idea it's him.

The Birthday Boy at the head of the boys table.

The Birthday Girl gives the orders.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

How Do I Dress Thee For Art Class

Lately, I just can't wait for Saturday mornings. Ever since Zuki enrolled in Art For Kids at SVA (School of Visual Arts) come Saturday morning I feel like a ten-year old kid leaping out of bed to go watch some toons. I could make myself out to be the selfless mom - say I'm ushering my child to higher education and all but the truth is I just love having 90 minutes of freedom in the city.

There's a Trader Joe's on the corner, a Bed Bath and Beyond over yonder, Burlington Coat Factory, H&M, Daffy's, Old Navy even a Home Depot! I don't buy anything mind you, I just look at stuff that I'd like to buy if an armored vehicle insisted I have a bag o' bills for graciously allowing the guards to use our bathroom.

Yeah, I got high standards when it comes to dreaming up shit.

Last week, during Zuki's class, Daddy and I took little brother Samu to the Cupcake Cafe on 18th Street between Sixth and Fifth. It's a children's bookstore that has a huge cafe inside and they sell - you got it - cupcakes. Beautiful cupcakes, too. It's almost a shame to eat them, but eat them we must.

Samu put up a fit when it was time to leave and pick up big bro, which was funny because he had a huge crying fit when Zuki entered class. There's no winning with a three-going-on-four year old.

What Samu was really upset about was that big bro was taking a class without him. The audacity. Samu thinks he can do everything better than Zuki and he couldn't understand why he wasn't allowed to attend. I guess it wasn't surprising when Samu rubbed it in that he ate a cupcake while we were waiting and he topped it off by saying, "It was DEEE-licious!"

As for the art class - it seems Zuki is really enjoying them. Last week, they worked with clay and I was so glad I dressed him in a black hoodie because it made the white clay hand prints on it really stand out. Guess there's no saving clothes from art in progress. Next time, I think I'll let Zuki go with the Jackson Pollock look: t-shirt and worn out jeans. Oh, yeah and a mug of coffee.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Piles

Hi. Remember me? Yes, I'm still alive and no, I haven't a legitimate reason for taking so long to write an entry. Of course, mine is just another blog among millions but the way I see it - if this were a job my ass would've been fired.

So, I apologize for my lack of consistency and slacking off these past twelve days. Other responsible bloggers feel it necessary to apologize when they go AWOL and following their good manners, I'd like to show my respect for those who Follow Me and say I'm sorry and please come back.

Maybe this is a feeble excuse but I just got overwhelmed. When the work piled up - or in my case didn't pile up at all - I became catatonic. Some people call it writer's block but in order to have writer's block a person has to be writing, not plucking gray hair all afternoon.

Something happened these past weeks where instead of opening up the laptop and staring at the cursor for thirty-seven minutes, I decided that suddenly the Tupperware needed to be sorted in size order. Then I was hungry - like starving Third World bloated belly and bulging eyes hungry. And of course, I couldn't neglect my kids! What kind of mother chooses writing over shopping for unnecessary toys?

Well, I realize the answer to that question is a mother. Not a writer. Besides, writers have no money to actually go shopping in the first place.

But I hadn't slacked off completely. The time off had it's redeeming accomplishments. I finished reading two books, "The Mermaid Chair" by Sue Monk Kidd and "A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khaled Hosseini. Loved the latter - wasn't too crazy about Mermaid Chair's story. Although, it was written beautifully. Also, watched "An Inconvenient Truth" and wondered why nobody had bottled the breaking glacier's water to sell at four-dollars a pint? Of course that would only add to our plastic bottle debris but it beats drowning or being saved by an aging John Cusak.

And if that doesn't bowl you over, here are pictures of my wacky kids to melt your kid-lovin' hearts:

Helping Zuki negotiate a Beef Brisket sandwich at the famous Katz's Deli
Gearing up for Halloween and I have no idea who these characters are. 
Ice Cream smiles now, dairy overload poops later.
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