Friday, September 29, 2006

Here’s Brooklyn at You, Kid

Tonight we depart for a weekend of fun in New York.

We will visit trendy restaurants and neighborhood pubs. We’ll drink pint after pint of beer into the wee hours of the morning.

[Pop! goes the dream balloon.]


Right. That’s what New York visits used to be like. We’ll be staying with dear friends and seeing the rest of the crew on Saturday - fellow breeders all. Instead of barhopping, playing drinking games, holding long conversations and making stupid wagers, we’ll be chasing toddlers, gauging developmental milestones, comparing children’s television shows and changing diapers.

Some things will remain the same, but the context will be different. Brunch will be scheduled, but this weekend it will occur between the times breakfast and lunch are usually served, rather than at 2pm when everyone’s hangover has cleared. We’ll play some poker, but with baby monitors beside our stack of chips. The question “Who made that smell?” will still be asked, but this time the offender can credibly blame the offspring.

It should be a good time.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

I'm So Insulted

Oh Tivo, how could you?

I'm willing to overlook that you recorded Survivor. I mean, we watch Amazing Race and Project Runway, and millions of other people like Survivor, it was a reasonable assumption. It was wrong - very, very wrong - but I'm willing to forgive that.

When Bump reported that you recorded a movie on Lifetime starring David Hasselhoff and Kathy Ireland, I nearly threw you out of my house.

Promise me it will never happen again.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

You Might Not Care What I Had for Lunch, But I’m Sure My Husband’s Colon Fascinates You

Bump’s big precancerous polyp is gone.

Bad news? The doctor found two more polyps, and Bump will probably have to do this again in a couple months. Good news? The chances of him dying from colon cancer by the time he’s fifty are pretty low.

As I said in a previous post, I’m not ready to do the parenting thing alone and I’ve got big plans for our life once we get these damn kids out of our hair. Plus, I’m pretty fond of the guy, so I guess this means you can put my vote in the “definite yes” column for the Are Early Colonoscopies Important question.

Which makes me want to get all preachy on you. Have all your loved ones over fifty had their routine screens? Ask them. If they haven’t done it, don’t stop whining until they schedule.

Plus, you'll get to giggle at them when they're enduring the prep.

Lumpyhead the Helpful

“I’m coming, Dad!”

Monday, September 25, 2006

Shits and Giggles, Round II

I meant to update you on Bump’s colonoscopy results before. I encouraged him to write about it, but my efforts to get him to post more often are still resoundingly unsuccessful. Then I planned a post entitled “Colon Pow!(what the h)ell,” in which I would slyly combine comic book exclamations with our esteemed former Secretary of State. The post would include the pictures Bump received of his colon with lots of “Smack!” “Zwack!” and “Zoinks!”. I was planning to give a nod to the Joint Chiefs and the State Department by using military and diplomatic terms, probably incorrectly.

Except I never got around to it. (Because deploying such terminology is difficult when you don't know what the hell you're talking about.)

So here we are. The defense of Bump’s bottom system required aggressive force in the form of unilateral laser sanctions against two polyps. The doctor opted for negotiations with a remaining polyp, but the channels of communication with the larger polyp have shut down. Attempts at peacemaking and conflict prevention have been unsuccessful. Biopsy results confirmed a harsher course of action - reinsertion and removal - is necessary.

Um, yeah. What I mean is: Bump is having another colonoscopy tomorrow to remove a remaining precancerous polyp. He has to go through the whole pre-colonoscopy procedure again, which is funny for everyone but him. He’s on clear liquids today (aka the saddest group of allowable foods ever) and forgot he shouldn’t have eaten corn this weekend (corn: BWA ha ha ha ha. [wipes tear] Corn.)

The whole thing makes us really, really happy he had the test done in the first place.

Friday, September 22, 2006

A New Leaf

My life is about to change in a profound way. I understand that, and I think I'm ready for it.

Dear New One,

I'm excited you are part of my life. I'm not a complete novice, but please be patient with me as I adapt to your presence. Others have told me what it will be like to have you around, but I know my experience with you will be unique and special. They say I will think of you all the time, and will be grateful every day that you've arrived.

I don't understand you yet, and frankly, I'm a little frightened. I will enjoy this period of discovery, as we get to know each other. I look forward to the time when you and I are intimately familiar with one another, when I am unable to live without you or imagine life before you.

Lumpyhead's (and Akutaq's) Mom

Yep, we got Tivo last night.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Thai Coup Haiku

A few tanks and no
violence make for a peaceful
bloodless takeover.

Why dick around with
an electoral college?
Sieze power instead.

You got one? Bonus points if you can rhyme Shinawatra or Phuket.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Show Me . . . You're Nuts

Not "your" nuts, stop being gross.

What's up with the Baby Weirdness in Missouri?

Wasn't there another nutty baby story out of Missouri a couple of years ago? A baby taken from her mother's womb by an internet friend claiming to be a interested in a puppy or something?

I try to block out Crazy Baby "News" Stories, but I admit some particles filter through my all-C-SPAN,-all-the-time brain. God, how sad is it that I just typed that? For the record, I sometimes mix things up by watching C-SPAN2 ("The Deuce") and C-SPAN3 ("C-SPAN Deportes").

I sometimes get random, semi-frantic calls from my mother, in which she yelps "Did you hear about . . ." or "You're not eating spinach, are you?" For certain topics, I enjoy being able to honestly reply, "I have no idea what you're talking about, Mom." I'm sure I'll get a call soon warning me not to announce Akutaq's birth in any way to the general public, lest some poor crazy woman try to steal her.

Since I don't live in Missouri, I'm probably safe.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Worried Pink

I’m a little freaked out about having a daughter.

Before Friday, when pressed about the baby, I said I was sort of hoping for a boy, but I thought it might be a girl. Then I would quickly add the disclaimer “but it doesn’t matter.”

I was “hoping” for a boy because it meant we wouldn’t have to move out of our two-bedroom condo. Lumpyhead and Akutaq can share a room for the next several years of course, but eventually we will have to move. I’m adjusting to the idea that our current place will not be where we spend the rest of our lives. I can’t say I’m all broken up about that – it’s not my dream house or anything – but it’s daunting.

Since Lumpyhead and Akutaq will be so close in age, we hope they will be friends. I was playing the odds that two brothers had a better chance of being close than a brother and sister. Obviously brothers, no matter how close in age they may be, are not guaranteed to be great friends; and some brothers and sisters are inseparable.

So really, it doesn’t matter. I was just looking for a way to answer a throw-away question. But I am worried.

I worry about posting this. Will it be misinterpreted, someday, as “I wish you had been a boy"?

Boys are easier. Boys are cheaper. Boys don’t get pregnant in high school.

Then there are the worries about expectations. I’m not expected to play catch with my son or teach him to parallel park or chat with him about the designated hitter. (His father and I will do these things, but they’re not traditionally expected of me.) I’m expected to teach my daughter about makeup and proper accessories and ladylike behavior. (These are not my strong suits. I can teach her to burp, which one assumes she’ll come out of the womb knowing how to do.)

I’m looking for the upside of being a mother to a girl. As far as I can see, there’s more pressure and more expectations and rife emotional issues.

My mother always told me that my grandmother was her best friend; I know she is disappointed that we don’t have the same kind of relationship. I don’t expect to be Akutaq’s best friend or confidant. It will be great if that’s how things turn out, but I expect she will think I’m lame and clueless and will resent the things I do. I will embarrass her and inadvertently disappoint her. I will annoy the shit out of her. (So will her dad, but he’ll always be Daddy and it won’t matter. The eyerolls and grating tsk-cluck sound will be directed at me.)

I never worried about these kinds of things – and still don’t – with Lumpyhead. Why is it different?

I can dismiss the worry about traditional expectations pretty easily. We’ve given tradition the finger and are creating our own definitions in our house anyway, so who cares if she learns about makeup from me or Amalah’s Smackdown or her friends or my gay cousin? (She’ll need one or more of those resources, because all she’s getting from me about makeup is “You’re beautiful without it. The end.” Not so helpful when you’re in junior high and it’s crucial you figure out that eyelash curler.)

She’ll learn the important stuff from me, though, like self-esteem and respect for others and intellectual curiosity. She’ll learn that her looks are secondary and her body not an object. It will never occur to her that women can be limited in their career or life choices.

And she’ll be able to rattle the rafters (of our eventual new house) with a burp.

I hope.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Out of Control

Doc and Nana V came over on Saturday afternoon, and we went out to an early dinner at an Afghan restaurant near our house. It's been so wonderful having them close by, and I'm going to miss them terribly when they move to New Orleans at the end of the year. Local grandparents are such a luxury.

Nana V arrived with two toys for Lumpyhead (they both make noise - lots of noise), an armload of adorable clothes for him, and no less than seven outfits for Akutaq.


With matching hats and socks and bibs and blankets.

Less than twenty-four hours after we knew what Akutaq's gender parts would be, the Grandmother Gravy Train arrived in full force. Nana V admitted she was waiting at the store when it opened.

She told me today to be on the lookout for a box from Janie and Jack. She described the coming items as "fancier than the things I brought - more for 'dress up.'" Apparently the velvet dress with striped leggings is just for lying around the house.

I'm very grateful (a bit embarrassed by the excess, maybe) and a little worried. We may have to get a bigger house just to store all the girl baby stuff headed our way. We've gotten several promises of scrumptiously cute hand-me-downs. We've been warned that Aunt Bob's father has been waiting for an excuse to buy cute dresses ever since his daughters grew up; he bought dresses for Aunt Bob's Little Guy before we knew he was a boy (both Aunt Bob's dad and I were certain - certain - that kid was going to be a girl. Oops.) The Minnesota and Maine grandmothers haven't even started their engines yet. Neither Bump nor I are above the "oh my god that's so cute we must have it" impulse purchase. We bought this coat for Lumpyhead five months before he was born.
We're so screwed.

Friday, September 15, 2006

The Big Reveal

It's a Democrat!

It's a Red Sox Fan!

It's also a girl.

I'm calling her Akutaq for now. I'll call her something else when she emerges.

Akutaq is an Alaskan delicacy - a sort of ice cream - made from whipped fat mixed with berries and/or fish, sometimes sugar. It was traditionally made from seal oil and reindeer fat, but today most people use Crisco.

(Before you get all "eeewww" on me, that stuff inside a Twinkie? It's akutaq without the berries or fish. The frosting on a store-bought cake? You can bet it's whipped shortening and sugar. So don't get all judgy on the native Alaskans, unless you also say eeewww to Twinkies and Safeway cake. Which I kinda do. Except, damn, now I want a Twinkie.)

Why Akutaq?

I was considering something like mukluk or tuktuk (or D'quarius), but then remembered hearing about akutaq during my Close Up days, when we had Alaskan kids on program. I can still plainly see the look of sheer joy on the face of one of my students, as she talked about how much she liked akutaq.

Besides, your first reaction (which I'm guessing was "eeewww") to a dessert made from whipped fat flavored with fish? Yeah, that's pretty much how this pregnancy has made me feel all the time.

I also found out the literal meaning of the word is "the mixture" or "blended one," which sealed the deal for me. (Heh, get it? Seal.)

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The Lawyer Prom

Last weekend Bump, Lumpyhead and I ran into one of Bump's former colleagues. She was having dinner with her husband and two daughters. Like Bump, she's now a stay-home parent.

Even though he's not a lawyer, before Bump became a stay-home dad he worked for a law firm. It was a rather small firm in DC, but the main office in Chicago was pretty large. I attended the holiday parties and sometimes firm happy hours, and knew Bump's colleagues pretty well.

One spring, the firm threw a party in Chicago, and the DC employees and their significant others were invited to an evening of dinner and dancing. It was instantly dubbed the Lawyer Prom.

Bump and I visited Chicago the summer before Lawyer Prom just for fun; we saw some sights, ate a fancy dinner, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. By the time the Lawyer Prom rolled around, our friend Buttmunch had moved to the city, so we were able to spend some time with him and his lovely wife while there on the firm's dime. Score.

The Lawyer Prom was held at the Shedd Aquarium, and Bump and I disagreed about whether we had been there during our previous visit. Bump was pretty sure we had been there, I was certain we had not.

The night of the event, we were running a little late (not shocking), and Bump was hot and cranky because he was wearing a velvet jacket and sweating like a farm animal (the Lawyer Prom was formal). We'd spent the few hours before Lawyer Prom drinking beer and playing Trapped with Buttmunch, so I had the start of beer buzz going.

We told the cabbie our destination, and he dropped us off on the steps of the lovely building. On the way there, I predicted we would find all the DC people huddled in a corner, talking to each other and not mingling with the Chicago people who vastly outnumbered them.

We walked in and were greeted by two lovely women, standing in front of a table of arranged placecards. "Should we pick up our table assignments?" I asked them.

"No," they said cheerfully, "grab some champagne and go on upstairs for hors d'oeuvres, you can pick up your name cards on the way down."

So we climbed the steps toward the exhibits, and I gloated about being right. We hadn't been to this place before.

We worked our way around the upstairs exhibits, refilling our champagne flutes and nibbling the passed hors d'oeuvres. When we reached the end of the exhibit space, we still hadn't seen the crowd of DC people. It was almost time to be seated.

When we spied the exhibit of Sue the dinosaur ("Ooh, look! I just heard about this on NPR!") Bump started to get suspicious. He pointed out that for an aquarium, this place really didn't have very many exhibits featuring, you know, fish.

After 45 minutes, four glasses of champagne, many little bites from waiter-guided trays, and no sea creatures in sight, Bump and I figured out we were in the Field Museum. The cabbie had delivered us to the wrong party.

We made a beeline across the plaza to the real Lawyer Prom - the black-tie event to which we had actually been invited - and I laughed the whole way. Bump was completely and totally mortified.

We walked into the Shedd Aquarium and immediately saw both fish and several people we knew, who yelled, "Where the hell have you two been?"

"Um. . . ."

The other party? The one we crashed? Had better food.

The Chicago attorneys? The ones we met were boring and sullen and male. Their wives were vapid and complained about how the Chicago holiday party didn't include spouses. We couldn't wait to get away from our assigned table and huddle with the other DC people.

The lesson? If you're a biracial couple in formalwear, you can crash a Chicago party without anyone noticing you don't belong there. And the first party might just be better.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Death, Danger, and Dime Slots

When I called Christian a Mama's Boy, of course what I meant was he and his mother were very close. Their relationship was strong, and he's struggling with her sudden loss.

(While we're on the subject of my last post, what the hell was I thinking when I wrote "almost exactly a year ago"? Almost exactly? I is a good writer.)

I'm glad we went to be with Christian, although it was a long day yesterday. By the time we got home my feet were swollen and my back hurt, and I enjoyed the lovely combination of hunger and nausea. I'm sure it had nothing to do with the bazillion little candy bars I ate on the drive. While throwing up half a spinach salad is excitement enough for one day, the most exciting thing that happened yesterday?

Aunt Bob was attacked by a mob of seagulls.


It's funnier if you know that Aunt Bob has a mild phobia of birds. She identifies with Tippi Hedren. Pigeons scare her.

After Christian's mother's service, Aunt Bob and I explored the city a little. We got corn dogs and french fries and walked along the boardwalk. As we finished Aunt Bob's fries, an impatient seagull decided to help himself to the one she was holding in her hand.

There was much squealing and squawking and flailing of arms and flapping of wings and running and swarming and trembling.

Aunt Bob got nipped in the finger, shrieked, dropped the rest of her fries, and ran away. A throng of seagulls surrounded the dropped booty and devoured them in two seconds flat. I sorted out what the hell had just happened, walked back to the scene of the crime to properly discard the now-empty fry box, and tried to comfort her. We kept walking. I suggested we get her a beer. She declined, and eventually stopped shaking. Then I started giggling.

Between giggles, I tried to convince Aunt Bob that really, it was pretty funny. She remained unconvinced. "It was terrible," she repeated.

It was pretty fucking funny.

Aunt Bob did not scream at the top of her lungs, which showed remarkable restraint on her part. The family walking toward us, who saw the whole thing, told their child not to open his chips "because those birds are crazy."

I continue to giggle. Because it is funny.

On the way out, Aunt Bob won $60 from a dime slot machine, a fortune I chalked up to the lucky seagull attack.

Monday, September 11, 2006

At Least Aunt Bob Has Promised Me a Corn Dog

My friend Christian was born to be a politician, and I mean that in a good way.

He’s dedicated to service and civic duty. He’s a natural leader. He’s a gifted public speaker.

He’s also a Mama’s Boy.

At his wedding almost exactly a year ago, I spoke with Christian’s mother at length. I had met her briefly a couple of times before. Her pride in her son was evident; everything he did was perfect, and everything he touched turned to gold.

A few hours from now, Aunt Bob and I will be leaving for Atlantic City to attend Christian’s mother’s funeral. Peter and Bump are staying home with the boys. Aunt Bob and I will put our sons to bed, then begin a necessary but useless effort to comfort another woman’s son.

The loss of a parent seems very raw today. Bump’s father is no longer with us, and I know the day will come when I will say goodbye to my own parents. Bump’s aunt died young, leaving a ten-year old daughter behind.

I worry about leaving Lumpyhead one day. I hope when it happens, he is old enough to have built his own life, secure in his own skin, ever mindful of how proud I am of him.

The concern about my own eventual passing is small compared to my fear of parenting alone. The life Bump and I have built is so dependent on us as a team right now, both of us working hard at it. I know people do it by themselves, but I cannot fathom how.

I have plans for the life Bump and I will lead once Lumpyhead and his sibling are grown. We will enjoy being alone together. We’ll grow old and share french fries and travel and watch tv. I want many years, many commemorations, and many milestones.

I know these partings will happen, I just want them to be a long way away.

It’s a morbid day, with morbid thoughts. Sorry. See you Wednesday.


As you've probably heard, there's a third Manning. Cooper, two years older than Peyton, is a oil and gas broker in New Orleans. He was a third-string quarterback in high school, who switched positions to become an all-state wide receiver. As a senior, he caught passes from his hotshot sophomore little brother. A spinal disease ended his football career before college.

How do you suppose he spends his Sundays? Yesterday it was easy, but do you think he normally frantically switches between the Colts and Giants games? Does he split-screen his brothers' matchups when they play in the same time slot? Does he Tivo one and watch the other live? Does he admit to the Tivo'ed brother that he was relegated to non-live viewing?

Or do you think he ignores football altogether, because it's too painful for him? Does he spend Sunday afternoon alone in his den, reading energy periodicals and weeping silently?

Friday, September 08, 2006

Bits and Pieces

1. Save an hour and a half of crying at around 1:30 in the morning, Lumpyhead's re-ferberizing went okay last night. I can say that because Bump dealt with it all. I was in bed, asleep, the whole damn time. I once half-heartedly offered to go in and pet Lumpyhead while he wailed, and was relieved when Bump said he had it covered.

I hope things go better tonight. You know, for Bump's sake, because I plan on being a useless POS again.

2. It seems like all the cool kids are describing their fantasy football lineups, but since I don't have a team, I'll tell you that seeing Daunte in a Dolphins jersey last night just seemed wrong. It was like running into that guy from the bar -- that guy who's always trashed and slurring his words and a little too huggy -- at work, when he's sober and wearing a suit and giving a presentation about something dull. You recognize him instantly (the leg kick before taking the snap; the scrambling ability, even though it's a little slower after knee surgery; his general bearing behind the line) but he looks out of place. Out of his element. (In aqua and orange? In number 8? What?) And you just feel, well, kinda sorry for him.

As sorry as you can feel for a guy who makes a lot of money and took a wild boat ride with some hookers.

3. I'm scheduled for a sonogram next Friday. Unless something scary pops up, we're going to find out the sex. Finalize your wagers by then.

Lumpyhead mocks both those interceptions, Daunte.
The photo is from January, but Lumpyhead knew even then. . .

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Cuddly Wuddly Muffin Pants

Lumpyhead has not been sleeping well since our return from the beach. We re-ferberized (not a verb, I know) him after returning from Maine and Minnesota, and he got back on a regular schedule. But I've been a big sissy about re-ferberizing (look, just let it go) since coming back from the beach.

Because, quite simply, I am a big sucker. Huge.

At the beach, Lumpyhead slept in our room in a pack-n-play. When he woke up in the middle of the night, Bump and I took him into our bed and he spent the remainder of the night with us. We would wake up in the morning to tiny fingers in our ear or our mouth, or maybe a small hand slapping our foreheads, or the sound of a little head thunking into the headboard.

We would sometimes also wake up to a great big grin.

It looked a lot like this:

We'd wake up to that or complainy whining.

While starting the morning with a smiling boy is tempting, that temptation is out-weighed by getting kicked in the ribs or elbowed in the eye socket several times during the night. Plus, you could never guarantee that you'd get grins and giggles, you might get cranky squealing.

We co-slept out of necessity before sleep training Lumpyhead, when he woke up five times a night. While we sometimes still co-sleep while traveling, we've pretty much transitioned Lumpyhead to his crib at home. Lumpyhead has indicated he prefers to sleep with us, or at least avoid his crib whenever possible. We've noted but not accommodated this proclivity, which is also what we've done with his expressed preference to eat M&Ms for every meal.

But at the beach, Lumpyhead upped the ante.

He tried straight-up cuteness. At one point, when he should have gone back into the pack-n-play from our bed, he actually pulled the covers up under his chin and beamed at me, saying "Look, mom! I could stay here, instead. Look how comfortable I am!" This tactic did not succeed.

Then, Lumpyhead pulled out the big guns. He started to cuddle.

He's always been a snuggler, but usually not for more than a few minutes. Now, he'll not only pull you close, but if you try to break away, he'll hang on tighter.

How can you say "Okay Buddy, back to the Crib of Injustice" to this?

You can't. At least I can't. Because I'm a huge sucker.

Bump has been at fantasy football drafts for the last two nights, but tonight he's putting Lumpyhead to bed. Maybe he'll have better luck. Or at least more will power.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Paging Senator Packwood

Apparently, our majority counterparts have a hot new intern.

I have yet to see him, but initial reports are "a young Paul Newman," "Wow!" (from a woman who typically doesn't comment on such things), and "he's giving Brad Pitt a run for his money."

My colleagues are busy dreaming up errands that will require Hott Intern to come to our offices. "Send him down with some copies of National Journal!" Followed closely by "Quick! Hide our copies of National Journal."

Rumor has it that his intern coordinator took one look at Hott Intern and decided he was hired, before looking at his resume.

So in case you were worried, sexual harassment is still alive and well on the Hill.

Okay, that overstates things a bit. The forty- and fifty-something administrative staff are fawning over a twenty-year-old white boy, over whom they have no direct authority and with whom they have no meaningful working relationship (other than to take the hand-off when he comes down to deliver something. A task they are now fighting over).

I miss Lumpyhead, but on some days this job sure can be entertaining.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

So Much Catching Up To Do

We're back.

Ernesto's toll wasn't too bad; we had a couple of rainy days but Friday afternoon was salvageable. There was some localized flooding, but we didn't have to evacuate or anything. The weather for the first part of the week was gorgeous, at least.

The worst part about rainy days in a beach house with four little boys under four? Four little boys under four. Gah. "Relaxing" really has no part in a vacation with children; you're just taking the show on the road.

Does this fill you with fear? It should.

There was no pretend peeing this year, but Lumpyhead's diaper leaked several times, twice on me. This time, the urination was for real.

There was only one vomiting incident, and thanks to our one game of Flip Cup, it wasn't even me doing the hurling. Woo hoo! (Still feeling shitty though, and have had a visit from the Vomit Fairy since we've been home.)

I'm feeling a little hesitant about next year, realizing how hard it will be with another child. Every time Bump and I watch families wrangling two children, our eyes glaze over and we shudder a little bit. The week was such a contrast to what I've come to expect from a beach week, when the day used to contain a short window of bleariness between hungover and drunk again, and the usual schedule was party until early morning, sleep past noon, nap on the beach, read by the pool, repeat. Even though Aunt Bob's Little Guy has joined us on previous beach weeks, he 1) sleeps like a hibernating bear and 2) wasn't my responsibility. His presence didn't change my schedule at all.

This year, we struggled with Lumpyhead's sleep patterns and once got to sleep past seven. Lounging by the pool happened only during naptime, with a baby monitor at our side instead of rum-laced punch in a tumbler. The single burning question of "Is there enough ice in the beer cooler?" was replaced by a litany of "When was he changed last? Does he want a snack? Does he need more sunscreen? What did he just put in his mouth? Should we do something to stop the wailing coming from that other child?" just to name a few.

I was sober the whole time, which made the whole un-beach-weeky feel of things sting even more.

Maybe I can be drunk the whole time next year.