Thursday, October 13

A little about guilt and a lot about joy

Donations for Pakistan earthquake relief are lagging. I'm as much to blame as anyone; as of this writing I've given nothing, not even much more than a passing glance to the relief effort. How hypocritical of me, after all the talk of irresponsible regionalism I sputtered after Katrina. As soon as my check clears the bank, I'm going to see what I can do to remedy that. It won't be much, but it will be something. The least I could do is pay attention.
I think I've got a bit of news fatigue at the moment. How lovely that my life is so cushy and insulated that any time I get sick of current events, I can just tune out and ignore them without any real consequences.
I was more of a hardcore news junkie than usual right after Katrina, but I plateaued after Rita and bottomed out when I took the weekend off to visit my friends in Middle Tennessee. Three glorious days away from the computer and cable TV rendered me almost completely unable to care about anything but my life, sunshine, and my friends. Getting back into the swing of reading, digesting, and writing about news 'round the clock has not been easy. This past weekend I was out of commission because of the wedding and the subsequent days spent keeping the nephews. I can see how people who have children begin to care less about the world and more about things like bicycle helmet safety laws, but I don't want to count myself among that crowd. Ever.

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Phil and I have agreed that Casey and Patrick are pretty much the best kids ever (except for Rylee, who doesn't count because she's still an infant, though if she retains her content, happy attitude, she'll rocket to first place when she's older). For children, they are so well-mannered, well-behaved, and gracious. Casey takes these qualities very seriously, and prides himself on being accurate and studious about everything. Patrick tends to clown around more, but his antics always have a sweet edge to them, like all he wants to do is see you laugh.
The day after the wedding, I slept in while my mom took the boys to church. She told me later that on the way back to the house, upon learning that he might be coming to Memphis to visit me, Patrick sighed and said, "I love my life!" Remember, this is the same kid who once made a beaded bracelet that said "I love Tim" because he didn't know how to spell "Grammy."
Monday evening, we went to Wal-Mart for some essentials, and Phil bought them each a $10 toy. They were so unbelievably excited by this. Casey got a fancy yo-yo and Patrick, who is currently obsessed with all things violent, made off for the Halloween costume aisle and picked out a Jason mask and a couple of glow-in-the-dark machetes, which he brandished pretty much constantly for the remainder of the weekend.

That night, we played Mario Party 5 and watched Robots until none of us could stay awake. We went to bed, and when Phil woke up at about 9 on Tuesday, he went into the spare room to see if Casey was still asleep (Patrick slept on the couch downstairs), but the bed had already been made and everything was in order. Phil went downstairs and said he saw them both awake, Casey fully dressed and Patrick in his jeans, playing Mario Party. He asked him if they had even slept, and they said yes, they had, and that they'd gotten up about half an hour earlier, straightened up, and decided to play a video game. They hadn't ripped through the apartment screaming, they weren't snooping in our stuff, they weren't tormenting the animals. They were just hanging out in the living room, being quiet until we got up.
Tuesday, I took them downtown to ride the trolley along the riverfront so they could see the Pyramid and the river up close. Then we went and got ice cream, picked Phil up at the apartment, and went to the zoo (it's free after 2 on Tuesdays). There, while other grimy little heathens ran circles around their parents, shrieking at the sight of every moving thing and obliviously tripping up old people as they flitted from exhibit to exhibit, my nephews walked briskly but calmly from place to place, delighted just to be there, and only repeating "Let's go see the snakes!" two times, and only acting mildly disappointed when they learned that the spider exhibit was closed for the season (quite a relief for me).

In every sense of the phrase, they are the best. I've posted some pictures over at the photoblog.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, I've got an article I found in a psych journal that I'd like to share with you about regionalism and relief efforts. After I go ace this psych exam. But for now - exhale. We're here to listen and console when you need us to. :)

Thu Oct 13, 09:25:00 AM  
Blogger nashgirl said...

Your nephews do seem pretty awesome. Makes me wish I had a younger sibling.

Thu Oct 13, 09:54:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Patrick knows the way to my very heart.

Thu Oct 13, 10:16:00 AM  
Blogger theogeo said...

PT — I'd love to read that article. Will it make me feel better or worse? And Patrick knows the way to my heart, too.

Khall — You could always procreate real quick and — presto! — in eight years you'll have awesome little humanoids to hang out with. And they'll say the darndest things!

Sat Oct 15, 12:39:00 PM  

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