Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The big 30

Music: The Cranberries
Movies: March of the Penguins (tomorrow)
Netflix: Punch Drunk Love (weird, but Adam Sandler is more interesting as an actor than an idiot)


Sunday will mark...nothing. I will turn 30, but what does that mean? I've had trouble remembering that I'm 29 for the last 4 or 5 months. I've been 30 in my own head since right after Amanda turned 30. In fact, I think I felt 30 from the moment we discovered Amanda's pregnancy. So what is 30? Is it any different from, say, 26? 35? It doesn't feel any different, except that the drugs I'm on for my back aren't as good as they were two years ago. C'est la vie.

To celebrate the "momentous" occasion, I was given the task of deciding what I want to do. Yeah... I'm not such a big fan of planning "fun" activities for myself or others. But, as it turns out, I'm not much of a fan of others arbitrarily filling up my schedule, either.

We've chosen to go to Irvington for a relaxing time on the river. We'll spend some time on the boat, read a little bit, relax a whole lot, play some bocce, and eat well. Then, on Monday, we'll go to Williamsburg and spend some money. Perfect, right? Except that the day keeps getting crowded with "good ideas". z.B., my mom wants (very badly) to have lunch with me on Sunday. Well, that's utterly impossible, but that didn't stop her from laying on the guilt trip. (Hey, mom: if you're so desperate to see me on my birthday, where were you for numbers 14 to 20?).

Now, my dad has found some people whom we simply must meet, but who want to meet on some horrid sounding place called "Mosquito Point". Yikes. I'm assured it's beautiful, serene, and that the people are first-rate. But what if I get bored? After all, it's the one day of the year where I'm guaranteed the right to be as selfish as I want. Do we get to leave at a moment's notice? What about spending too much time in the Sun? We'll have to ride there in the open-top boat, spend time on Mosquito Point, and then ride back in the open-top boat. I don't want to endanger Amanda, who has marvelously sensitive skin. Nor do I want a deep burn (to which I'm prone, as I always forget to renew my sunscreen).

I'm sure I'll have a good time. I get like this every year: I can't come up with anything I want to do, so I just let others plan for me. I dread their plans, but wind up having a blast.

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We find out next week what Lumpy will be (boy/girl) -- assuming Lumpy is facing the camera.

I've been reading Amanda's "The Three Martini Playdate", and am inspired to find there are others who feel that children are not the center of their universes.

If you put the child at the absolute fore-front of your life, then the child will naturally come to assume that he/she is infallable, and that all social encounters will be favorable to him/her. This extends into adulthood, and can be seen in this bizarre notion of entitlement that we see in so many of today's young adults.

Screw that. Our kid will have serious boundaries, will not be bargained with, and will learn to respect others. Or else we'll sell the child to gypsies.

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Last night, the assembled members of the RiverCityMINIs Board of Directors took a couple of runs down Riverside Dr. The first was a fast run with Dad and Chris K. While it was fun, I got a lot of barking from the tires; I think they're down to their last few months of life. The car was full of clicks and clacks from the brakes, and did not feel good.

But she felt very strong. This car, now that the airbox and coil pack have been replaced, is pulling much harder than she ever has. While I can't keep up with Chris, I can stay closer to him. This, however, has a trade-off that I hadn't considered: previously, I had never gained enough speed on that run to really need the brakes. Sure, I had to squeeze them once and again, but this time I was on them hard and often.

On the second run, I incorporated some techniques I've seen in watching professional rally videos. Instead of holding the wheel on a constant angle through the apex of the turn, I tried sawing it back and forth in 15-degree motions throughout the turn. To my utter amazement, the car felt more composed, and the tires only barked once. Of course, I think I was moving a tiny bit slower, out of fear that the sawing would spin me...

Harnesses are coming. I'm giddy.

2 comments:

Manda said...

May you enjoy all the days surrounding your big 3-0 as much as I did. Even if that means just spending time with wife and kitties. Resist those meddlers!

Chris K. said...

I think a lot of your newfound speed comes not from the new parts, but rather from improved skill. Each time out I observe smoother and more confident driving from you.