Friday, May 18, 2012

head hangy

I spent some time debating the title of this post.  I'm not really sure if it's spelled hangey or hangy, but it's supposed to be pronounced like the word hang with a long e at the end.  Just so you know.

The phrase "head hangy" is one Kathy made up, and is essentially an unpleasant task, hanging over your head (hence the name) that colors your entire mood -- often, without you even realizing it.  You know the type.  You are cranky for days, sometimes weeks, and then you give the presentation, confront the family member, make the doctor's appointment, do your taxes, whatever, and suddenly, you are light and free and fun to be around again. 

I have had so many head hangies over the last two weeks that I've been snappish, cranky, and stressed.  Anxious and sleep deprived.  All manner of lovely things that make the mornings go really smoothly at our house (haha).  Finally, I realized how many head-hangies I had, and started diligently trying to get some of them off my head.  I also made a concerted effort to drink coffee before speaking, which also helps immeasurably.

Just when I finally managed to clear all the head hangies, I was informed that I have due diligence over the next ten to fourteen days -- which includes this weekend and Memorial Day weekend -- except that I have no idea when the documents will be provided.  It could be any time today, any time over the weekend, or any time on Monday.  (For you non-lawyer types, due diligence involves massive piles of documents provided by the other side, all of which must be read by a lawyer to make sure that the client will still want whatever transaction to go forward.  It is often mind-numbing, but you can't actually allow your mind to go numb, or you will probably miss something crucial.  If you are really lucky, you get to summarize everything you read in a 200 page memo.)

Monday, May 14, 2012

rainy days and mondays

a man wearing jeans and a dark jacket walks down madison avenue carrying a black umbrella on a rainy evening
photo by Joe Bergantine

Rainy Mondays make me me fantasize about a life where Kathy works 8 to 5 but makes enough for us all to live on, so I can become housewife extraordinaire, stay home instead of trudging into the city to work every day, make dinners, read books and do projects at home.  Kathy can come home in the evening and go for a run and play with the kids, then we can all sit down to dinner together.  Kathy and I can catch up on Game of Thrones after we tuck the kids in.  Every Friday we get a babysitter and go on a date or spend time with friends.  We head out to Fire Island every weekend and work on our house and lie around in the sunshine on the beach, drinking lemonade.  We get a dog.  We are never stressed or tired.  We all live happily ever after.  The end.

You know, the kind of life that exists only in fantasies, but is nice to think about on a rainy Monday nonetheless.

Friday, May 11, 2012

a good start

I suppose I would be remiss in my duties as a gay-engaged blogger if I didn't write something about Obama's historic announcement this week in support of marriage equality.  But honestly, I have trouble viewing the statement as any real progress.

I'm glad he finally made this announcement, and I suppose it is "historic" as he's the first President to openly support same-sex marriage.

And yet, as one of my friends pointed out, it gets us no closer to slashing the number of federal rights that Kathy and I are denied, even though we can get married in our home state of New York.  And it does nothing for friends in school without health insurance because their working spouse isn't permitted to cover them.  It does nothing for friends scraping by financially because they've had to devote their resources to paying legal fees to have documents drafted so that their "registered domestic partnership" isn't rendered null and void when they cross state lines.  An endorsement without an action plan feels a little hollow. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

two months in - an action plan

In the last post, I gave myself a 3.6 out of 10 on the scale of work-life balance. Which, I say again, is pretty abysmal. I committed to developing an action plan so that my precious few non-work hours didn't slip away from me.  Well, my friends, the time has come to commit to that action plan publicly, in front of you.  This is mostly for my own self, to hold me accountable, but if anyone has suggestions, they would be appreciated in the comments!

Also, sorry about the lack of pictures, but this post is very serious.  Also I only had a short amount of time to work on it.

1. Gardening. Just so you know, the lawn is no longer a foot tall.  I mean, it's a good 8 inches again, but not a foot, and it's been raining all week.  Kathy and I have decided a good way to handle this is that one day a week, when I can get out on time, I'll mow while she cooks dinner.  Usually one of us cooks and the other bops around the kitchen chatting, so this is a small sacrifice of some family time together, but we make a point of sitting down as a family for dinner each night, so we will have to catch up then.  Also, C has baseball games each Saturday morning, so when it's our weekend with the kids, I'll stay home while the rest of the crew goes to the baseball game, so I can do the other gardening -- weeding, mulching, planting, etc.  I bought a flat of annuals for some fun color and we actually have an enormous amount of mulch left over from last year stashed in various places, so I am all ready for the implementation phase.  Two hours every other weekend is not as much time as I would like in my garden, but it's a heck of a lot better than nothing.

And Kathy has promised to help me plant Stewart.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

two months in

One of the main reasons that I quit my job last year was to enable me to focus a bit more on the non-work things I loved about life.  These were things like gardening, cooking, reading, working on my house, and exercising.  When I decided to go back, I also decided to really focus on making sure that I was doing these things regularly.  In corporate speak, this is called work-life balance.  It's something I was sorely missing before and actually thought, at one point, was impossible for a lawyer.  So, now that I've been at my new job for two months (two months!) I decided to check in and see how I was doing.

1.  Gardening.  I revealed last week that our lawn had grown to a foot in height.  Nothing has been weeded, unless you count randomly pulling clover out of the cracks of the driveway as I walk to the front door at the end of a work day.  There are no annuals in the ground, no vegetables in the raised bed (except the garlic, planted last year) and I haven't spread compost or mulched a single thing.  The Stewartia is still in it's shipping pot, sitting on top of its future home.  I did manage to mow the lawn on Monday after work, which took me about twice as long as normal because I had to bag the extra-long lawn clippings, and decided to mow the patio so at least the weeds were as short as the grass. 0 out of 10.