April's Real Blog

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Sometimes I just don't learn

So, like I mentioned in yesterday's comments, I went shopping for a new backpack. There was a 30%-off luggage sale, and I picked out a pink backpack w/a yellow front pouch and yellow straps.

When I got home, I showed it 2 Mom, all, "Check this out, Mom! --I just bought it!" Then 4 sum reason, I decided 2 show her all its features: "It's go MP3 an' cell fone pockets, water holders, lunch compartment, shoe stringers, an' a hidden cash pouch! Behold the reinforced shoulder straps, mega payload area and 2ndary zippered supply compartments." Then I loaded it up w/stuff, like testing what wd happ if I used each and every one of thoze features and compartments I had just shown Mom, all while saying, "I can totally load it up w/everything I'll ever need!" And then, I went 2 put my arms thru the straps, and the exertion of doing so caused me 2 have the words GRUNT HM MFF MMM ERK STRUGGLE appear in the air around me. Then, once I'd hoisted the pack up on2 my shoulders, hunching under the w8 of it, and asking Mom, "Is this a gr8 invention, or what?!!" And Mom was all, "Yes." And as I struggled 2 my room, feeling motion lines coming out from 2 pts of my backpack and from my butt, and 2 stars by my forehead and nose, I had the odd, odd feeling that Mom was thinking sumthing inane like "It gives a whole new meaning 2 the words 'back 2 school.'"

Y'know, as I was huffing 2 my room w/my over-loaded backpack on me, I had this nagging feeling of déjà vu. And I remembered that several yrs ago, I did the same xxact thing w/an overloaded backpack, rite down 2 carrying sneakers in it. I sed, like, almost the same xxact thing abt b-ing able 2 carry everything I needed, and @ the time, Gramps tried 2 warn me that I was lugging 2 much w8 on my back. Soon after, I switched 2 a smaller backpack, and Gramps asked my if this was cuz I was following his suggestion. I told him it was cuz of a comment Becky had made.

NEway, I was thinking @ least then I had the xxcuse of being a lot younger. This time, I was 16 yrs old, and it was like I'd learned absolutely nuthing in the intervening yrs. I was thinking it was as if I'd just been given sum traits 4 comic effect, and my growing, maturing, and changing over my lifetime was all an illusion. That all got me kinda depressed.

But then I kinda told myself I shd try 2 take control of my destiny insteada needlessly repeating the old patterns. So I dumped my backpack on2 my bed, weeded out the stuff I didn't really need, and tried it again. So now I have my backpack all ready 2 start school on Tuesday, without breaking my back. Yay, me. For the moment.

And I have bad newz. I got a strange e-mail from a jiflb.org domain, informing me that 4 the next 2 wks (xxcluding Sundays, probably) my topic was 2 B Mike reminiscing over old foto albums w/Merrie. Then I'd B discussing Liz and Anthony, and wd go back & forth betw that as my topic and Mike's reminiscing until sumtyme early next yr, when Liz's relationship w/Anthony goes 2 sum kinda logical conclusion.

After that, we'll B in2 full-time reminiscing. And I'm gonna hafta decide if I'm so bored that I don't even wanna do this blog NEmore. I don't know yet, but I will let U all know 1ce I get that figured out.

Apes

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20 Comments:

  • At 11:25 AM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…

    April,

    Dearest future sister. I know exactly what you mean about overloaded backpacks. Since we live in residence at Cashwell Day School, we have to carry our books to and from all the classes and the residence. When Mater was shopping with me to buy my backpack, she specifically told me I should have one of those little suitcases with wheels, since I couldn’t be assured my fiancé, Bronson van Daam, would be around to carry my books for me, and also so the weight of the books wouldn’t snap me in half like a twig. I am not as thin as my beautiful Mater, but I think we both recognize that beauty has the price of not being able to lift too much without serious injury.

    April, I guess your Mater must disapprove of something about your backpack, since she made you pay for it yourself, and she had her disapproving thoughts about them. Does she believe you should be a proper lady and have my brother (your boyfriend) Gerald carry your books to and from class? Or does she believe you should use the same backpack you had in the prior years as some kind of money-savings effort? I know you do not have a lot of money to spend on school supplies, since you spent most of your summer in Winnipeg or working for that theatre, neither of which paid you money, I believe. I presume anything for which your Mater would not pay, is something of which your Mater disapproves. Gerald told me how you had to buy things to redecorate your room, because your Mater disapproved. Am I reading the situation correctly? Or is it this comic effect thing you were talking about?

    Love,
    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

     
  • At 11:35 AM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    honoria, 4 my mom 2 disapprove of me getting a new backpack, she'd actually hafta think abt me long enuf 2 consider whether this wd b sumthing she wd pay 4. i think it's part "comic effect" and part "oh, the kids these days, they think they hafta carry all thoze new-fangled gadgets, like their mp3 players and cell fones. and they like 2 stay hydr8ed, so they carry water. in my day, we had a satchel w/3 books and a composition book."

    sumthing like that, i guess.

    apes

     
  • At 2:46 PM, Anonymous Bronson Van Daam said…

    April, please don't tell Honoria, but my mater has been applying some not-too-subtle pressure on me to consider canceling my engagement to Honoria in order to pursue Greeta Van Guilderland. The Van Guilderland family is fantastically wealthy, with ties to the most lucrative tulip farms in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Denmark. She is also fêted by all the high-society people who count.

    Miss Van Guilderland also has a coveted size-minus-two figure, which requires her to spend half her time in all the best eating-disorder clinics. And when she isn't in recovery, she will be attending grade 10 at Cashwell Day School.

    As much as I adore Honoria, I might not be able to withstand the pressure from my mater. However, Honoria and I might be able to continue our relationship in secret.

    Bronson Van Daam

     
  • At 3:49 PM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…

    April,

    Dearest future sister. Do you remember how my Mater disapproved of you sending me foodstuffs along the lines of butter tarts to me at Cashwell Day School? Mater has discovered that there is a particular girl in grade 10 at Cashwell, who has an unusual weakness for butter tarts. Not only that but it is a girl whom Mater would very much love to have the buttery tarted experience like your family gets to experience only a regular basis. This poor girl is terribly deprived by her family, you see. So, if you don’t mind sending some to me when I am firmly ensconced at Cashwell, I would appreciate it. Mater thought about sending some herself, but she thinks if you do it, it won’t be traced back to her.

    As for your Mater and her not thinking about you long enough to disapprove of your backpack, I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes when my Mater gives me her disapproving looks at my gross obesity, I have to remember that those looks are still better than being completely forgotten. However, in your Mater’s defence, I am sure her thoughts about “bringing a new meaning to back to school” are actual disapproval and not from ignoring you. I don’t know if that makes you feel any better or not, but it would for me.

    Love,
    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

     
  • At 4:04 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…

    April,

    Formerly little sis. I am not sure why you resist the repetition, which is by its nature, part of the Patterson life. It’s like when mom goes through her menopause and flaps her arms. It’s just funny. It doesn’t matter how many times or how many ways or how many years she does it, it’s still funny. At least you have the benefit of putting some new kind of spin on the repitition, by walking around your house and puffing like an old woman trying to make up for decades of inactivity. I laugh just thinking about it. You, straining to carry a loaded backpack in your home when it isn’t a school day, is just 2 different shades of hilarious.

    As you have pointed out, our family is getting ready to start thinking about our past on a full time basis and of course, with all of that past, there are a lot of great puns, which people haven’t heard since the last time we did them, which may only be a few months ago. Just remember, if a pun is good enough to be funny the first time, then it must be even funnier the second time or the third time or the fourth time. Can you imagine the joy you will bring to the people who read your Blog, when they can laugh not only at something they have read, but also remember, “I first laughed at this joke when Michael was 7 years old, and I was 20.”

    Always remember, formerly little sis, repetition, not originality, is the Patterson way of life.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     
  • At 4:04 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    honoria: yeah, no, i'm not going 2 b sending u nething @ cashwell. sorry, u'll hafta make other arrangements.

    ape

     
  • At 4:12 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    mike, i can imagine the joy. oh, w8, "joy" isn't the word i'm looking 4. i'm thinking of that other thing. rite, "tedium."

    apes

     
  • At 4:25 PM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…

    April,

    Dearest future sister. It is so crass and unladylike to say this, but what if I were to give you the money to buy and ship the butter tarts to me? It would be a huge favour to me, and a very nice thing to do for your future sister.

    Love,
    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

     
  • At 4:27 PM, Blogger howard said…

    April,

    Thanks again for baby-sitting my daughters for Beatrice and me last night. We had a great time with Argentinian folk dancing, and I was surprised I could look at all the ladies in their colourful dresses and not feel one twinge of envy. I hope my daughter behaved themselves for you while we were gone.

    Beatrice and I almost had a problem when your sister and Anthony Caine came into the dance hall to dance, but Beatrice yelled, “Conga” and the two of them ran out immediately. By the way, I have your sister’s shoes, in case she is wondering where they are. Some people ran after your sister to give her the shoes, but she just kept running away with Mr. Caine. Just to let you know, Conga dancing is quite fun, even though it is technically Cuban and not Argentinian.

    You raise an interesting issue with you getting all these dictates about what you should put into your Real Blog. I have told you many times you should write what you want to write, and not worry about those orders from the Johnston Institute for Better Living. Beatrice has the inside line on those things, because Stephanie, who does the website for your mother, also does some work for Lilliputs’ book store where she works, and she says that for someone who obviously has the ability to maintain a blog every day for years, there are many opportunities which do not necessarily have to do with remembering what your family has been doing.

    For example, I am sure if it were up to the Johnston Institute for Better Living, I would be rotting in prison right now for pulling your sister’s shirt (I think that’s what it was), instead of happily married to Beatrice Alfarero, and enjoying life as a father of her two incredible daughters. Now may be just the time to break those shackles of control and make you, April Patterson, into the person you really want to be.

    Love,
    Howard Bunt

     
  • At 4:31 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…

    April,

    Formerly little sis. The “ium” word which is a synonym for joy is “delirium” and not “tedium,” although my lovely wife Deanna agrees with you, even though she is not the published author of the house.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     
  • At 4:41 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    honoria, i have decided doing favours 4 u is a bad idea. u will have 2 conduct yr own biz w/out me.

    howard, the girls were perfect angels! i'd b happy 2 sit again netime.

    it's poss that i'll b able 2 break out an' b my own person soon w/my blog, but it's also possible that things will develop in a way that saps out my will 2 care. i guess we will hafta w8 an' c, eh?

    mike, yeah, i was v. aware of what i was doing w/the word "tedium." i m glad dee agrees w/me. i guess she'll b changing robin's poopy pants while u and merrie look @ albums for days and days on end.

    apes

     
  • At 4:45 PM, Anonymous Bronson Van Daam said…

    Something quite odd has happened. Greeta Van Guilderland has just received an e-mail indicating that she has been anonymously subscribed to the "Butter Tart of the Month Club," which will send her a large package containing a different flavour of butter tarts every month, and that each box would have "a one-month supply."

    Her parents are quite scandalized and have deemed this completely unacceptable.

    Bronson Van Daam

     
  • At 5:00 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…

    April,

    Formerly little sis. I certainly hope you are correct about my lovely wife Deanna changing my son’s diapers or “poopy pants” if something escapes the diapers. I have managed to avoid that disgusting duty and I would certainly hate to have to learn how to do it, when I and my daughter will be about the important work of recounting mom and dad’s courtship. I thought there wouldn’t be a task worse than to think about mom and dad “in love,” so thanks for reminding me there is.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     
  • At 5:04 PM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…

    April,

    Dearest future sis. While I am disappointed you won’t do me this little favour, I did appreciate that website recommendation. I have a feeling it is going to be just as effective as the favour would have been. I have a sense that this number I hate, “minus-two,” is even as we speak being changed into a more positive number.

    Love,
    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

     
  • At 8:39 PM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…

    April,

    Formerly little sis. Mom is running around here like a madwoman. I have to go over the photo albums of hers and dad’s courtship, and all she can find are photos which go back to 1979. Of course I said to mom, these pictures can’t be 1979 because Liz is in the pictures and she was born in June 26, 1981. They obviously have to be after 1981. But mom insists they go back to 1979.

    She has started talking about how she met dad in university and how they got married and she had to give up her plans to get her English degree. Then I made the mistake of saying, since I was born in April 28, 1976 and mom was born in August 26, 1951; then she would have been 24 years old when I was born and even accounting for an extended gestation period, she should have been able to finish her English degree, since virtually every university offers an English degree. Mom said a few pointed curse words at me and looked for a coffee cup to throw at my head; but fortunately Deanna keeps those locked up when mom’s around.

    Anyway, if you see a photo album of mom’s courtship days, we need it so I can start my reminiscing with my daughter, what mom calls “Hide rid”, which I guess is what happens when you accidentally have hidden or gotten rid of an old photo album and have to draw things out from scratch. Let us know if you see it.

    Thanks,
    Michael Patterson

     
  • At 8:53 PM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…

    April,

    Dearest future sister. I just got off the phone with Bronson van Daam, who has assured me that we are still completely devoted to each other. He mentioned how a girl we both know, Greeta Van Guilderland, whom I don’t think you would know unless you were in the tulip business, had a tragic thing happen to her. She got an e-mail which caused her to go on a Butter Tart-eating binge and she went up 4 dress sizes in 4 hours. Her parents disowned her (in word only, since the law won’t allow it) and I think they would have considered kicking her out of Cashwell Day School, except the academic standards there are so low now.

    I know it sounds amazing how a single e-mail can completely change a person, but I remembered how you told me your e-mail to your sister about Mr. Caine’s divorce caused her to dump her man, her job and place of living. So, it doesn’t seem that improbable after all. Sometimes an e-mail is just a catalyst for putting something into motion, which was all ready to move. Wouldn’t you agree?

    By the way, I am baby-sitting for Mr. Caine tonight---my last time with little Françoise, before I leave tomorrow for Cashwell. I have tried to comfort her, but she is terrified of what she is going to be forced to do or say to her mother, if she shows up in the next 3-4 months. If you would be so kind as to stop over and visit, and let her know that she has a friend to stand by her, I would greatly appreciate it. I know you don’t seem to be too fond of doing favours for me lately, but I hope you will change your mind for little Françoise’s sake.

    Love,
    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

     
  • At 9:35 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    mike, mom did the weirdest thing. she found sum early pics that we've all seen b4 (so not going back further than when u and liz were little) and she asked me 2 scan them and use fotoshop 2 create "courtship" and early-marriage pics of her and dad. i'm not even sure how 2 go abt this!

    oh, and whenever i ask mom the kinda ?'s u were asking, like abt d8's and ages and stuff just not fitting in2 a timeline, she throws open a window and sez i must need more air. so, so weird!

    honoria, i guess i cd count it as a favour 2 françoise rather than a favour 2 u.

    apes

     
  • At 9:45 PM, Anonymous Greeta Van Guilderland said…

    Hello, Miss Patterson. My dear, dear friend Bronson Van Daam told me about this "blog" of yours.

    The most frightful thing happened to me. One moment I was reading an unsolicited e-mail (I must stop doing that!), and next thing I knew, I was binge-eating butter tarts! i don't even know where they came from, as my parents do not allow such treats into our house.

    Well, the most frightful, unimaginable thing has happened. I have gone up four sizes, to an unseemly, portly size two! My only consolation is that I am still slimmer than the pear-shaped honoria forsythe. my mother, of course, has telephoned the headmistress at home and given her strict instructions that I must be in the "diet ward" at Cashwell until my figure is back to its normal, ethereal shape.

    Greeta Van Guilderland

     
  • At 10:22 PM, Anonymous Honoria Delaney-Forsythe said…

    April,

    Dearest future sister. Thank you so much for agreeing to help out little Françoise. I can go to school with a good conscience she will be looked after.

    I will leave tomorrow for Cashwell, right after I do a little cosmetic surgery on some butter tarts to make them look like celery. I know of a particularly needy person, who will just love them that way.

    Love,
    Honoria Delaney-Forsythe

     
  • At 3:07 AM, Anonymous Michael Patterson said…

    April,

    Formerly little sis. Mom and I were looking all around for that old picture album and guess who had it? It was my daughter. I found her sitting at our dining room table looking at the album. At first I was relieved she had the album, but then I was a little startled at my daughter’s height. Her little body towered over the table. I went and asked my lovely wife Deanna when our daughter stopped using booster seats in the dining room chairs, and Deanna told me we don’t use them, even for my son. You see, I could have sworn that just back in July, my daughter had to sit in my lap to see above the table, and yet there she was. Children grow up too fast, April.

    As a good father you have to learn to adapt. So I went back to my daughter, who pointed to a picture and said, “Daddy, who’s this?” I said, “That’s Grandpa Jim, your great-grandfather.” I was lucky to recognize him at all, because for some reason, this album had a lot of pictures that seemed to be negatives, where the humans appear like white silhouettes and the background appears like it is completely black. I don’t think I would have recognized Grandpa Jim at all, except for the cigarette hanging out of his mouth. It was back in the days when Grandpa Jim was with Grandma Marian, and he had dark hair and chain-smoked. Naturally my daughter would not equate him with the old, white-haired guy they don’t see very often any more thanks to his salty language, from whatever that talking disease is he has which makes him curse all the time.

    Then my daughter pointed to the lady standing beside Grandpa Jim in the picture and said, “And who’s this lady?” Thank goodness it was Grandma Marian, and not that woman whom Grandpa used to…I think I remember mom asked me not to tell you that story. It was Grandma Marian so I said, “Grandma Marian. She died before you were born.” I mentioned the part about dying, in order to provide my daughter a little relief from the embarrassment of not having recognized Grandpa Jim, whom she saw just last month at the picnic at our house. When it comes to recognizing people in pictures, you don’t want to be critical of the young. Otherwise, they will lose all interest in looking at pictures.

    My daughter does not have an understanding of dying yet. She’s never killed an animal like the two you did, which helped you learn about death at a very early age. So she said, “I never saw her?” Like I said before, you don’t want to be too critical of the young, so after I sat down in my imaginary chair (my daughter’s favourite trick of mine), I answered her question with “No—and I didn’t see her much, either. She and Grandpa Jim lived on the other side of the country.” You see what I did there? My daughter could never see Grandma Marian since she was dead, unless my daughter has been participating in some of those séances to contact the dead. At least I hope she hasn’t been doing that. There was one day when it took me about an hour to find her, and it ended up she was hiding in our closet, and that would have been an opportunity for a séance. I don’t think she has the right tools to do one. I didn’t find any candles or weejee cushions in the closet. In any case, I told my daughter I was like her, and I didn’t get to see Grandma Marian much either. Her daddy is just she is, with a distance between her and her great grandma Marian, except the distance between her and our Grandma Marian includes the barrier to the afterlife.

    The next question my daughter asked me made me smile. She said, “Why did they move so far away?” You see, formerly little sis. My daughter has lived in Milborough for just 9 months, and already she thinks of it as home, and she questions why anyone would want to live far away from Milborough. She is going to make such a great Patterson someday. However, since she did ask a real question, I had to answer, “They didn’t. Their daughter-your Grandma Elly moved here to go to school.” Now you may find this a little confusing. After all, mom did not actually move to Milborough to go to school. I tried to simplify things for my daughter to understand it. I felt the story was getting too complicated for her tiny little brain to comprehend.

    I decided that was probably enough for tonight and said, “It’s sort of a long story!” My daughter looked into my eyes, and touched my arm, and I could swear she had my lovely wife Deanna’s face, except with her little girl hair style and not Deanna’s bowl cut. It was freaking me out, especially when she said, “That’s OK, daddy….I’ve got time.” That’s probably true. The notice I got from the Johnston Institute for Better Learning said I should expect to be having this conversation about albums with my daughter until early next year. So, it would be about a 6-month long conversation. I am not sure I can maintain this for 6 months. That invisible chair thing is really rough on my back.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     

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