Category Archives: band

Still Alive…Barely


How In the hell did it get to be mid-September already? This month has been flying by, and I can’t seem to catch my breath. My birthday was the 1st, and starting that day, I have been working crazy long hours to get a project done. There’s nothing quite like spending the evening of your birthday working until 2:00 am. The only worse birthday is when you have to work late AND your husband forgets. Oh yeah.

The project finally finished up on Friday and I was all set to have a weekend filled with naps, but we all know that didn’t happen – the kids keep me running.

Friday, we went to our high school’s first home game to see the boy march with the band. Our school in small so they let 7th grade and up participate in marching band. Of course, being a lowly seventh grader, he has to bide his time before getting a chance on the coveted snare and is currently paying his dues on the cymbals. I have no doubt he will get what he wants next year, though, seeing as how he is constantly drumming. On one hand? Yay for practicing. On the other? Loud! Drums!

Regardless, I was very proud of him:

Also – for anyone thinking that the marching band is dorky or nerdy: He loves it. He is having a shitload of fun, going a ton of fun places, hanging with his friends, learning a lot, and probably the biggest thing he loves about the band: Girls. There are lots of cute girls in the band. Older, cute girls. And they’re texting him and hugging him and giving him cutesy nicknames. He’s in heaven.

(Oh – and the first one of you that makes the “band camp” joke gets a pox on your house. That’s my baby we’re talking about)

Oh, and speaking of being proud (and also a little late) – a couple weeks ago, the girl sang Over the Rainbow on stage in front of about 600 people. Dressed as Dorothy. I seriously need to get her involved in some sort of theater program because this kid loves performing. She’s not shy, she isn’t afraid of an audience, and lord knows she’s dramatic. I am clueless about these things, though, so if you know of a local program, let me know.

Anyway, behold the cuteness:

So back to this weekend. After the game Friday night, we had to get to bed early because the boy had to be back in town with the band at 7:30 am to play at our local “great race” 5k. Rapunzel picked him up and dropped him off for me so I didn’t have to drag my lazy fat ass off the couch the girl out in the cold, drizzly morning. I gave him money so he could treat Rapunzel’s son to McDonald’s afterward, which would kill two birds with one stone – fueling up two growing boys and prolonging my fat ass couch time the girl’s sleep.

But then he called me to tell me that instead of playing with the band, he used the money I gave him to register for the race and would be running. So now, I had to drag my lazy ass out wake up the girl and get down there to a) see it in person, and b) take photos. Because I gotta tell you, my kid is not exactly a runner. Before we hung up, he asked me if I would be running, too.


Let me just interrupt myself for a public service announcement. I don’t run. Even when I was in great shape and an athlete, I didn’t run. So now? Running? Noooooooooo.

So here’s the public service part:

If you ever see me running? RUN.

Don’t stop and look, don’t ask questions, don’t think about it – just run. If I am running, there is a reason, and it’s one you don’t want to face –I assure you.

You’re welcome.

Anyway – he didn’t break any land speed records, but he finished, which is something given his genetic predisposition added to the fact that not only was he not wearing running clothes, but he was wearing marching band shoes. Clunky, boxy band shoes. Look how thrilled he looks:

The girl and I then went to the finish line, where she spent exactly 16 minutes being excited and waiting for her brother to “win the race.” Then she lost interest and went to the playground instead:

That night the boy had yet another band function, which we missed because we had a 40th birthday party to go to. Once again, Rapunzel was awesome and picked him up.

Sunday morning, the kids and I met up with Rapunzel, her son and another friend and headed to Kennywood. It was a great day for it – low crowds and short lines and great weather. Except for lunch time when we baked in the glaring sun while waiting for Potato Patch fries. That part sucked.

Oh, and also Noah’s Ark. Seriously, What the Fuck, Kennywood? They ruined Noah’s Ark. It was the longest line we waited in all day. I could have gone on my favorite ride – the Pitfall – 6 times in the time it took to get on Noah’s Ark. You locals surely will remember the Noah’s Ark of yore – it was a walk on – never a line. Now – BIG, LONG LINE. Instead of walking in, you have to go on in small groups because there is an “elevator” room (which, come ON Kennywood – this is no Haunted Mansion). So you stand there and wait and wait and fidget and listen to the kids whine for an hour before you get on. And it sucks. And the ride is stupid now. Not that it was ever NOT stupid, but at least it used to make sense – it was Noah’s Ark – you saw animal on an ark. Duh. (and walked in through the whale’s mouth, but at least the Jonah – Noah connection made a little sense). Now, you go into a mine elevator or something. Then you walk through an area with glass floors and skeletons beneath you. Then you get to a section with Noah and the animals, then you head into a room with funhouse mirrors and lights (oh, how I wanted a photo of myself in the “skinny” mirror), and then finally, you’re on some kind of leaky submarine. What in the name of Jacques Cousteau does any of this have to do with Noah’s Ark? Fuck if I know.

Although, admittedly, Noah’s Ark did give us the best laugh of the day. When you get to the glass floor section, there are “beams” and circles made of concrete, so it looks like there is no floor beneath you. The huge guy in front of us thought you had to walk on those and was balancing and half falling and contorting himself to stay on so he didn’t fall in. Then, the even better part – this section is in a square, with a door in one wall to continue to the next section. It looks like this:

So, the first time, we are following the guy in front and we are so busy watching him balance on the beams, that we miss the door. So we go around and realize we went in a circle. The last people in our group are just getting through, so we let them go, and we are laughing and talking (out loud) about how we went in a circle. We let the line go by and then we start around the circle again, this time going through the door to move on. But balancing guy and all the people behind us continue to go around the circle! When you get to the funhouse room they stop you until the whole group catches up before they let you in the submarine room. We waited five minutes until they caught up. Apparently, the entire group spent five whole minutes going around that same tiny circle before the figured it out. It was awesome.

I have no photos of the boy from Kennywood, which is sad, but he was either a) not with us, or b) being a shit:

Finally, last night, amidst the chaos of scout ceremonies and baton practices and dinner and baths and ban meetings, I discovered that my ATM card has gone missing. Awesome. Oh – and I discovered it as I was buying stuff for our trip this weekend, so I had to have the woman hold the stuff so I could come back. So way too late, I was driving back to the mall to get it. And I wrote a check and handed over my license and the girl says, “Did you know your license is expired?” Yay me. I’m getting on a plane in 3 days. I told mr b about it this morning, saying that I I hope I can get my new one quickly enough and I can’t believe I missed the expiration and don’t they usually send something and he replies, “They did send something. I put it up in the cabinet.” Blink. Blink. Are you kidding me? He never told me it was there and then basically hid it! He’s awesome.