Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Happy Birthday to Boy #2!!

Today is my son's birthday. He is nine. Every year, around November 1st, I always have great intentions. "I'm going to plan his party now. I'm going to think of some great presents for him. I'm not going to get distracted by Thanksgiving and be scrambling after Turkey Day to plan a party in December." This was going to be the year. But guess what? Last night I was at Target at 9:30 at night filling a cart with a bunch of crap--I mean, some nice presents--so Boy #2 would have something to open today. I booked a bowling party for him today, too--the second weekend in December. What is my problem? Why does this whole month fly by every year?

Actually, I think Boy #2 had a pretty nice day. He got some nice presents including a Spongebob cap, a Ripley's Believe it or Not book, and a label maker. Nothing says "Happy Birthday, kid" like office supplies! He got many more presents from other friends and relatives, including 3 pounds of rubber bands to make a giant rubber band ball--but that's a whole 'nother story. He got a giant cookie cake to share with his class at school, and dinner out at one of those Japanese places where they cook on the table in front of you. All in all, a pretty good birthday.

Next year I start planning in October.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

More Vegas stuff

Yesterday morning I almost walked right into Robert Kennedy Jr. when I went down to the lobby. I told him I really enjoyed his speech at the show the night before. I had to say something, right? Then last night at the very funny hour and 20 minute Jon Stewart show I sat three seats away from a bearded and corduroy-wearing Jeremy Piven. He is another pint-size celebrity, no taller than my 5'6" and very slight. He must have had a busy weekend because he took a little catnap during the performance!

This morning when we were leaving the bellhop told me he had helped Dave Chappelle with his luggage and he gave him a $50 tip. I broke the news to him that the day could only go downhill from there.

Now we're back in Chicago enjoying the 30 degree temperature difference. It's fun to go away, but it's always good to go home.

Friday, November 18, 2005

What happens in Vegas doesn't always stay in Vegas....

FROM LAS VEGAS--Last night I spent the night with Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Dustin Hoffman, Steve Martin, Ray Romano, and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. (whom I prefer to think of as "Bobby"}. It's not what you think. Mr. Minivan and I are at the HBO Comedy Festival in Las Vegas, and last night we went to the taping of "Earth to America", a collection of stand-up comedy and music with an overall theme of global warming. And in case you're confused, all the participants are against it. Last night's show really made me think about this issue, which I must confess, I don't do a lot--think about global warming, I mean, not thinking in general. This planet called Earth has limited resources, and we should all be doing our part to protect them. If you watch the show this Sunday night on TBS, people like those above as well as Larry David, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Bill Maher, and astronaut Jim Lovell will explain it all to you in a very entertaining way. Check your local listings...

After the taping we went to a private party thrown by HBO. We saw Bill Maher (very short, with a huge head), Bobby Kennedy Jr. (I restrained myself from asking him if he was the one who had a fling with the babysitter) [NOTE--he's not--that was his brother Michael], a man dressed head to toe in a Chicago Cubs uniform with Dempster on the back of it (Ryan Dempster IS a Chicago Cub, but if it was him, why would he be in full uniform in Las Vegas in November, and if it wasn't him, why?). We saw and met Larry David, who looks and sounds exactly like he does on his show. I couldn't help myself, I told him he was responsible for the bags under my eyes from staying up late and watching TIVO-ed episodes of his show.

After we left the party, we walked through the casino, where we saw a huge crowd of people gathered in one area, watching something. We got a little closer and saw that Tom Hanks (slicked back long hair, what is he thinking? I hope it's for a movie and not his own personal choice) and Faith Hill (tall, slim, gorgeous, tons of hair, and even more tons of eye makeup) were at a craps table surrounded by many large, beefy security men without smiles. We kept walking.

When we got back to our room we found a gift from the elves at TBS, a Polaroid camera. Just another night in Vegas...

Friday, November 11, 2005

Dropping The Ball

Tonight Boy #1 made a simple request. He wanted to go to the local high school football game ("Everybody's going, Mom!") with some friends. A simple request, right? Here's the catch. These friends were getting dropped off. At the game. Alone. They are 11. Yes, 11. Is it me? When I was 11 a big night included watching "The Brady Bunch" and getting to stay up til 10:00. I don't understand it. How can parents think it's OK for 11-year-olds to be out at night unsupervised? Big-time fumble, in my opinion. When I told Boy #1 he could not go unless an adult was going too and then offered to go to the game with him and Boy #2, it turned out he was actually fine not going. He was a little tired and was perfectly happy to go home and watch TV with his brother. I think he just wanted to know that he could go if he wanted to.

What's next, weekends in Vegas when they're 12?