Monday, December 13, 2010

Congratulations. . . I'm sorry.

I wonder how it is that the word "congratulations" has become the go to sentiment for a person who has just given birth. In many circumstances it makes sense. When speaking to a member of a first family it is among the most painful and infuriating words in the English language. For more thoughts related to this word and the subtext it can carry, see my ramblings here.

I remember being congratulated by a few people when sharing the news that Athena was pregnant. Apparently those people didn't bother to read my body language or look at my face when sharing the news. Everything about me said "despair". Yet the congratulations continued. Each time it was like a stab in the gut. Every iteration like another blow to a nail pinning me to a board. "Congratulations" meant "you should be grateful". Saying congratulations meant this should be good news and I don't have the right to have mixed feelings.

The next time a person you know gives birth think a little about what you really want to say to that person before speaking up. If that person is in a difficult situation "good luck" may be the better choice. "I'm sorry" can even be appropriate. "Congratulations" doesn't fit every situation. Think a little longer before speaking. Or speak a little less frequently. It will give you a chance to listen more carefully to what others sound like when saying such things. "Congratulations" can be the salt in a wound.

"Congratulations" could mean "fuck you".

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Drama. . . no, really.

I've occasionally grumbled about work here. It has continued to take up the vast majority of my time of late. Four weeks of over time later I'm dragging myself along trying to see a light at the end of the tunnel. It's rather difficult to convince myself the light is more than a cruel jerk with a Mag-Light but time will tell.

Much Ado About Nothing is the show I've been working on. The set is enormous. The drawings have been out of scale. I'm exhausted most of the time. The load in has kept us running ragged for three days straight. They've turned it into a musical. There simply isn't a silver lining on this cloud.

In any case that's my lame excuse for not keeping up with the blog. Athena and I have been trying to get a visit in with MS Scarlet, Prof Plum, and Festus for three weeks running. We weren't able to see each other at all through November. Our previous visit was relatively early in October so it's been almost two months since we've seen them. I'm expecting Festus to be applying for grad schools by the time I see him next. It's been a long time. More info on the cause for delays later. Mostly illness related on our part.

To those who have given me awards, thanks. I'll try to do something about that soon. For those who don't know I've been given the "Cherry On Top Award". . . twice. It's actually quite endearing. In any case I'm now back on the clock and must return to the stage.