Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Not my idea of sex education

A week or two ago, buckling my belt on a flight from Dallas to Atlanta, I listened somewhat inattentively to the standard announcements by the flight crew except for the portion of the program when the lead flight attendant said, "We have rectums located throughout the cabin."

Me: HAHAHAHA. Wait, what?

The man next to me and I started laughing like little children. The flight attendant was shaken only for a beat or two and then kept right on reciting without laughing a bit. You know she wanted a sip of vodka to follow since, well, she just said rectums and it was Friday afternoon after all.  And I assure you I was not laughing AT her as much as I was laughing with her because really, missteps can occur at any time.

A few days earlier, I came downstairs dressed to go out with JMac and Mini looked at me and said, "I like your bumps." No son, you don't like my bumps. You might like bumps but you shall not like MY bumps. 

Then over this past weekend, my tiny, precious son found a note his Daddy left for me and well, the note didn't say, "I would like to take you to the magic forest so we can chase unicorns, light candles and listen to fairies play little harps and tiny bells." The note did however reference some other things and none of them I wanted to discuss with our aforementioned tiny, precious son.

No, hold the horn. I am not going to get into all kinds of sultry details but let us suppose JohnnyMac believes I've got the Boom Boom Pow. And let's suppose that yes, in fact, I still got it. Now suppose he shared his thoughts with me in this regard on a piece of paper. We can all conclude the note would most certainly NOT contain references to unicorns, candles or little harps and tiny bells. I am quite certain none of you want to know all about the mega love between JMac and I but I cant really tell the story without a little reveal.

Warning: I am not about to get all Patty Penthouse on you but if you just woke up or are just trying to enjoy your morning smoothie, maybe come and visit me later? For the rest of you steely lot, move on ahead. 

I had yet to realize but quickly learned MiniMac had come across the note when in his tiny, precious voice he asked me, "Mommy, what is a blow___.

Me: (straight faced) I don't know. (Neck = cold. Spine = tingling.)

Him: I found it on this note. That is funny. (He then reads the note to me word for word. Small hallelujah: JohnnyMac isnt verbose in this verboten note. However, tiny court reporter is reading back ALL the facts. I must play it cool.)

Me: Hmmm, I have not read that note. (Even though I had and ^($(&@^)_(@@ why was that not hidden????)

Him: Do you know what it means?

Me: Oh, I have never heard of that. I don't think that is a note for me.
Him: Who else would it be for?
Me: Maybe a neighbor. Or the garbage.
Him: What? That makes no sense.
My thought: OK Jim Rockford, let us let this mystery fade without resolution!!!
Him: Blow____. Is that like bubbles?
Me: It is not even a real thing, buddy. (Oh boy.)
He gave me a quick look. I took my index finger and pretended to tap something.
He laughed and asked, "What is that for?"
Me: That is me unsubscribing to this conversation.

Followed by a text to MiniMac's Daddy with a big TA DA followed by BRAVO Dirty McGee. I mean, it is super cool that after many, many years of marriage, JMac and I still have all the sass and sizzle but really. REALLY?  Did I have the opportunity to educate my child? Not the way I see it.  Sex education for my son will be about body parts and animals that start with B. It took me a month to convince MiniMac its 'nipples' and not 'nibbles" and for him to understand I can't exactly follow his command and just 'get a penis like me and Daddy!" A note my son accidentally finds and subsequently shares with me in his curious fashion is NOT my idea of sex education. And thankfully I did not mock the poor flight attendant because as previously stated, missteps can occur at any time.

Although, given a choice, I would prefer to say rectums in front of 150 strangers and 4 colleagues than to have my son read a spicy note penned by his Daddy for my eyes only.

If neither of these scenarios have taken place in your day, you should give yourself some applause.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Because I want the country to have a better week (and proof that one minute can make a difference.)

This week was so tumultuous in the news. It is becoming more frequent that we pause from one tragedy because a new tragedy has developed. I think Elvis Costello had it right, 'What's so funny about peace, love and understanding?' I won't chime in on Boston other than my heart and prayers go out to everyone impacted. I will say I should recognize that every day, anything can happen to change the course of life. I made the most of it this weekend with my husband and son. And I actually sat in the sun, with my eyes closed momentarily, drinking a great beverage, listening to one of my favorite live musicians, at one of our favorite restaurants in Atlanta (The Optimist). 

I was not in a hurry to finish this, check that email, listen to that voicemail, think of my many to do's, plan dinner, plan the next morning. I simply sat and thought, we have a lot to be thankful for. I saw a post recently that said, "What if you woke up tomorrow with only what you thanked God for today?" I am quite diligent on the daily to express my gratitude and thanks for many, many things. My child, my spouse, safety, physical ability, freedom, family, friends and free will at the top. If I woke up tomorrow with only things I am thankful for today I would totally throw in: Kitchen Aid mixer, dance music, food processor, running shoes, iPhone (I heart Siri!), Vosges chocolate bars and Mad Men FOR SURE.

I hope the week is more peaceful. I cant no more easily explain to our 6 year old what transpired in Boston than my explanation to him recently why he can not actually jump off our third floor overlook into the second floor living room like Superman. ( PS: You want to basically hand your child a giant platter of defeat, confusion and Sorry when I told you could do anything you wanted if you put your mind to it go ahead and tell him he can't actually fly and that Superman is fiction.)

I heard an incredible story in the midst of last week's chaos and that will be a blog post later this week. I saw this clip earlier today and one minute really can make a positive difference. A 7 year old boy in Nebraska named Jack Hoffman is battling brain cancer and this moment surely made him forget all about his battle.The video was a little persnickety this am so click here for full article.

Have a better week.

Friday, April 12, 2013

The moral of this story: Get your sh*t together

A friend recently shared something on Facebook that I in turn must share with you.

Below is an email exchange between a graduate student at NYU and a well known professor in NYU's Stern School of Business. The story circulated initially in 2010 but I want to shake it off and give it some additional air time. Regardless of who you believe is in the right, the moral of this story is get your sh*t together, and frankly, that is a moral we could tell many people every day. I like Professor Galloway. Read on:


Subject: Brand Strategy Feedback

Prof. Galloway,
I would like to discuss a matter with you that bothered me. Yesterday evening I entered your 6pm Brand Strategy class approximately 1 hour late. As I entered the room, you quickly dismissed me, saying that I would need to leave and come back to the next class. After speaking with several students who are taking your class, they explained that you have a policy stating that students who arrive more than 15 minutes late will not be admitted to class. As of yesterday evening, I was interested in three different Monday night classes that all occurred simultaneously. In order to decide which class to select, my plan for the evening was to sample all three and see which one I like most. Since I had never taken your class, I was unaware of your class policy. I was disappointed that you dismissed me from class considering (1) there is no way I could have been aware of your policy and (2) considering that it was the first day of evening classes and I arrived 1 hour late (not a few minutes), it was more probable that my tardiness was due to my desire to sample different classes rather than sheer complacency. I have already registered for another class but I just wanted to be open and provide my opinion on the matter.

To which Professor Galloway responded:

Thanks for the feedback. I, too, would like to offer some feedback.
Just so I've got this straight...you started in one class, left 15-20 minutes into it (stood up, walked out mid-lecture), went to another class (walked in 20 minutes late), left that class (again, presumably, in the middle of the lecture), and then came to my class. At that point (walking in an hour late) I asked you to come to the next class which "bothered" you.


You state that, having not taken my class, it would be impossible to know our policy of not allowing people to walk in an hour late. Most risk analysis offers that in the face of substantial uncertainty, you opt for the more conservative path or hedge your bet (e.g., do not show up an hour late until you know the professor has an explicit policy for tolerating disrespectful behavior, check with the TA before class, etc.). I hope the lottery winner that is your recently crowned Monday evening Professor is teaching Judgement and Decision Making or Critical Thinking.

In addition, your logic effectively means you cannot be held accountable for any code of conduct before taking a class. For the record, we also have no stated policy against bursting into show tunes in the middle of class, urinating on desks or taking that revolutionary hair removal system for a spin. However, xxxx, there is a baseline level of decorum (i.e., manners) that we expect of grown men and women who the admissions department have deemed tomorrow's business leaders.
xxxx, let me be more serious for a moment. I do not know you, will not know you and have no real affinity or animosity for you. You are an anonymous student who is now regretting the send button on his laptop. It's with this context I hope you register pause...REAL pause xxxx and take to heart what I am about to tell you:

xxxx, get your shit together.

Getting a good job, working long hours, keeping your skills relevant, navigating the politics of an organization, finding a live/work balance...these are all really hard, xxxx. In contrast, respecting institutions, having manners, demonstrating a level of humility...these are all (relatively) easy. Get the easy stuff right xxxx. In and of themselves they will not make you successful. However, not possessing them will hold you back and you will not achieve your potential which, by virtue of you being admitted to Stern, you must have in spades. It's not too late xxxx...

Again, thanks for the feedback.
Professor Galloway

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

People are awesome....

It is a beautiful day in Atlanta. I got to spend 25 minutes of this hectic day doing something free of concalls, meetings, reporting, assessing reporting, or negotiating terms.  Instead, I was reading to MiniMac's class. Last week at a party for one of the kids in his class, another Mom told me her son came home and said, "Mrs. Mac is the best Guest Reader." She told her son kiddingly, "I am a great Guest Reader too." Her son replied, "Not as good as MiniMac's Mom."

I will take that crown and wear it proudly. I think I have it in the bag because I do so many voices which is the key to being a great Guest Reader. As I left them today, I said, "Congratulations on being the worlds's best kindergarteners. Its a hard job, but you kids are awesome." I was then swarmed in the best way as 22 tiny people embraced me in a hug. That is SOME hug.

I often find humor in the levels of idiocy we see on a daily basis but I am always more inclined to seek and applaud the awesome moments. A simultaneous hug from 22 kiddos who think you are the best Guest Reader completely qualifies.

I checked my email and my Father sent me this link. Because it was one of the rare emails my Father sent sans politics, I opened it. I am glad I did. The title reiterates the sentiment I had just felt earlier today: People are awesome.

Have an awesome day.