Ellis & Barnes: Serious Mothers!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I Was Going To Blog But My Baby Suddenly Turned Into Deadly Scissors And I Had To Go To A Hospital


Sorry I haven't been around. Please be patient. It will pay off.
Princess Pony Jordi

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

An unbelievable night

Hello PPPAers!
It is the morning after the election and my joy is overwhelming as I take in what is truly the most amazing historical moment of my life.

I wish more people were talking about...hardy har har.

So here is my personal experience from election day.

At 5:30AM Stefan and I were up and very giddy about going to our voting station that opened at 6AM. I kept telling Stefan we didn't need to rush because we live in Park Slope...and there are going to be no surprises in Park Slope. This neighborhood is Obama city so people aren't going to be crazy about voting. Out the door we go at 5:45am and as we turn the corner at our location I was proven soooooo wrong. You mean Stefan and I weren't the only people excited about being the first to vote for Obama? Weird, right?
(sorry...dark picture...but it was DARK!)

What has two thumbs and loves voting?


What has two thumbs and loves banana pudding?

So there are about 100 people ahead of us...not a crazy line, but about a 20 minute wait till we hit the door...and out the door comes this elderly, African American woman who stands at the top of the stairs and announces, "I was the first one to vote."

The line goes nuts! Everyone is applauding...I start crying...I turn around and an old, white gentleman is crying...everyone is crying. It is incredibly moving...not the line...but the moment!
In to the voting area we go and of course, the machine Stefan and I are to use is broken. We start talking with the couple behind us in line, joking about slipping our hand written ballots into the incredibly, non-official, yet totally official cardboard ballot box, and the whole thing being tossed into a garbage can. This box might as well have been an amazon box with a slit down the side. It felt very high school (especially since we were in a high school) and that there was no question Jenny Arbuckle was gonna win SGA treasurer.

I would also like to point out that I may have been given a Hispanic ballot as the proposition that was listed on the ballot was in spanish. ¡Viva la elección!

The only disappointing thing about the voting process was that NYC does not give you a little "I Voted" sticker. HOW THE HELL AM I SUPPOSED TO GET MY FREE STARBUCKS OR KRISPY CREME!? Aren't I entitled to free "stuff" for doing my duty as a citizen? I think I am.

Actually, I missed the excitement of passing people with "I Voted" stickers and smiling or high fiving or whatever encouraging gesture we might give each other, like I had experienced in other states I had voted in.

So what did I do? I made some damn stickers! I called up Stefan and asked if he could do a quick design, I hit the Staples for round stickers, and presto blamo...¡Viva las pegatinas!

Last night we had over some friends to watch the election coverage. I believe we had 5 computers going, 1 iPhone, and two scarf knitters.

I found the whole coverage irritating...I mean up until 10PM it was just a bunch of people talking at each other and regurgitating the same non-facts about exit polls. My favorite is calling a state when only 1% has been counted. Blah blah blah...big surprise, New York is going Obama...blah blah...Alabama is going McCain, shocker...blah blah blah...I talkie talk at you, you talk talkie at me...blah blah...CNN has hologram technology...blah blah me Obi Wan Kenobi.
I will admit though...when they called Pennsylvania...that was cool.

I had one to many "buffalo wings of change" around 10:30, so I snuck upstairs to the den and watched the rest of the Daily Show/Colbert Report coverage with my two cats and found myself falling asleep as Jon Stewart announced Barrack Obama was our next president.
I took my weepy self to bed...not sad to be by myself with this news...but elated to be getting into bed with the promise of a new direction for our country and with my husband and my friends just down stairs celebrating the news. I just sort of needed to be alone for this. This is a really big deal for so many reasons and I needed to reflect and let my excitement and fears and hopes sit with me for a moment. I turned on WNYC, our local NPR station, and fell asleep listening to the lead up to Barrack's speech. (No worries, I have it recorded.)
If you find it weird that I left my own party then you don't know me very well. Anyone who has ever been to our house for a social event has seen..or rather not seen me...silently exit a room and disappear into my bedroom. I love having people over and I love going to sleep with the sound of people having a good time. I have hopefully encouraged a home where people feel that it is their home as well and don't need me around to make them feel that way. It could be weird...but I like it.
Anyway...about an hour later...I guess around midnight, I woke up to the sounds of our party guests leaving. The radio was still on, as well as both TVs and you could hear the boisterous sounds of celebration from parties around the country coming over airwaves. After a while though, I was finding it hard to get back to sleep with all that noise. I called out to Stefan, "Can you shut off the TVs? It is really loud.

Off go the TVs.

Off goes the radio.
The boisterous celebration not stop.

It is almost 1am in the morning and the streets of my neighborhood are filled with people screaming with joy and cars honking horns. It is louder than New Years Eve!
On go my pants. "Stefan, grab your coat...we have to go outside and check this out."
Out we go to find hundreds of people lining the streets, coming out of bars, hugging and high fiving and crying and yelling "We did it!" Cars and taxis and public buses and garbage trucks are honking and waving out their windows.

It was incredible! I have never seen anything like this. The excitement and happiness was like a could grab on to it. It felt like Stefan and I were walking in slow motion, arms around each other, through some sort of documentary we had stumbled into through a bad plot device.
The nicest moment was when we were almost back to our corner...we ran into the couple we had voted with that morning. We saw each other at the same time and literally ran to each other and hugged and laughed and congratulated each other. While the fact that they were an interracial couple makes no does paint a nice picture. Actually, it does make a difference to me, growing up in Alabama, where interracial dating was taboo or a SCANDAL to some people when I was a teenager. (Luckily I ran with nerds for the most part..and nerds tend to be above that sort of thing. ¡Viva las NERDS!) has been a long year, and while I am sad that I was not cheering the election of Hillary Clinton, I am proud of our country putting aside old and possibly new baggage to elect someone who can really make a difference during a very difficult time. I hope that we all keep the same level of enthusiasm and involvement in our government as we enter into this next phase.
I would like to share with you my favorite image of the night. This is the heiress to the cohort, Jordi and her her husband Ted's beautiful daughter...Evangeline.

Here is to you Evangeline, and growing up in a world where you never know that this wasn't possible.


Monday, November 03, 2008

Guess Who Scared Children...AGAIN...for Halloween 2008?

This girl as Dr. Hurtsinside! (Hello gorgeous!)

This Guy! (That's Stefan patiently (har har) waiting for his operation)

This girl! The lovely Miss Anya Garret as The Nurse.

Last but not least...this guy...Dan Gordon as our special effects coordinator.

So, once again PPPAers, its Halloween and Stefan and I permanently scarred kids for life. This all started about 3 years ago, when Stefan and I were sharing memories from our Halloweens growing up. My strongest memories were of the houses in the neighborhood that really scared us when we went to the door to trick or treat. The classic being the bowl of candy sitting in a dummy scarecrow or ghost's lap with a sign that said "Please take one" and never knowing if the dummy was really a dummy or if it was a real guy who was gonna terrify you when you reached for candy. It usually was the latter.

So that year we decided to dress Stefan up, sit him on our stoop, blast scary music from the window, and let him scare people. It was fantastic! You can relive here.

Last year we decided to step up our game and came up with VooDoo Queen, Madam Bizella, who would raise her zombie prince to dole out candy. We kept the scary music and added a fog machine. Huge Success! Check it out here.

Well...I think it is obvious that Stefan and I felt we had to go big or go home for year three, so after much debate..."Terrifying clowns or Surgery gone horribly wrong" we went with option 2. (Clowns are just disturbing...too scary for anyone.)

Starting about 2 hours before we set up, we could hear people walking by the window saying "I wonder what they are gonna do this year!" "They are always so scary!" "Oh no, it says the Doctor is coming!" Expectations were very high.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present "Surgery Gone Horribly Wrong" aka "Operation Pull Candy From Stefan's Guts."

Let us watch how the show played out with our first trick or treater...a tiny mermaid.

(So young and soooooo tiny...please let us not have made a horrible mistake with our "surgery idea" this year.)

The Nurse asks if the Mermaid is here for the surgery while our patient is under.

Nurse Anya then says, "We are thrilled to have with as our new resident Doctor, the terrifying and ruthless Doctor Hurtsinside!"

(Cue fog machine and Doctor Hurtsinside. )

I come out and say something like "I see that the patient is ready. You say he was complaining of stomach pains?

"Yes Doctor," says the Nurse.

"We'll have to open him up to see what is wrong! Scalpel?"


(I cut Stefan open.)


"Sponge, Doctor!"

(I start to root around inside Stefan and pull out guts and a heart and make several lame jokes about how he doesn't need these things anymore and then...)

"Oh my god! Nurse! I can’t believe it!"

"What is it Doctor?"

"This man is filled WITH CANDY!" (see photo above for Butterfinger blockage.)

"Oh No!"

"We are going to need help! I can't remove this! I am not a candy specialist! We need a candy specialist to help!"

(Anya to mermaid) "Are you a candy specialist? Will you help get this candy out?"

(You see the scare here is that when the child reaches in to get the candy...Stefan is to wake up and start screaming "I CAN FEEL EVERYTHING!") is the big this going to be TOO scary or TOO gross? Will this small child have a problem reaching into Stefan's guts to pull out candy?

How amazing and awesome is that! It is a Halloween extravaganza! She didn't cry or anything. She looked a little confused, but the candy was comforting.

People started coming and groups started forming and adults got their adult friends to come over and get scared and kids set their parents up to get scared.

Sometimes Stefan would scream with the first person to reach in and sometimes he would let 2 or 3 people in a group reach in with out waking up and then really scare the 4th person. Here is the lovely Miss Livia being totally surprised.

One of my favorite moments was a young girl from 3 doors down who was by herself and had been to the last 2 "experiences." She comes out of her house and Anya asks if she is here for the surgery. "Sure!" We do the whole schpeal, and she reaches in...Stefan screams, she grabs a piece of candy and runs only to look down and see that a piece of Stefan's insides (blood dyed lasagna) was stuck to the candy, which made her scream even more.

Ok...before we go any further, I have to share the story of the trick or treater who scared us. This child had been here can always tell because they are usually dragging their parents or talking about the year before when they show up. This girl was ready for whatever we had for her.

Here she is...we go through all the stuff...blah blah...we need a candy specialist...she walks up...reaches in and when Stefan screams...

This child jumped straight up in the air and flat onto her back.

It was like watching a cartoon. We screamed...everyone went silent for a moment and then we started laughing...and more importantly...she started laughing...she got up and got her candy.

I'd like to think we were that scary...but I would like to think even more that this child came to pull one over on us. are some additional shots of the carnage and the candy.

Here are our good friends J and Jaime....being properly delighted.

Kids reaching into Stefan's stomach really doesn't get old.

The nurse would make sure that tiny monkeys who didn't want to operate also got candy.

And that my friends is that. Thank you to Anya and Dan for being a part of it and thank you to Monica who took pictures and to all our friends who came and hung out.

We are looking forward to next year!

Biz and Stefan...Halloween nerds