This was a good weekend. Even though we lost an hour of sleep to Daylight Saving Time (a weird concept in our 24/7/365 culture) I more than made up the hour in laughter courtesy of my progeny. Both of them were home this weekend, an event that hasn’t occurred since January. Having my girls around me while I absorbed Jacob Bernstein’s beautiful tribute to his mother, Nora Ephron, (Nora Ephron’s Final Act) made me realize two things:
1. That the times I don’t write because I’m too engaged in the present is a cop-out — it makes my writing a victim of my own happiness.
2. When I’m too timid to incorporate family and feelings into my writing — those are missed opportunities. To quote Nora’s own mother, “Everything is copy.”
If I could write 1/100th as well as the great Ephron, I would consider myself gifted, but here’s the kicker. Even when she was sick, Nora never stopped working — “she wrote 100 blog posts, two books, two plays, and directed a movie.” If my only excuse is “happiness” I really don’t have an excuse. Because if you keep your butt in the chair, and keep pounding out the word count, and keep editing you will craft something worth reading (and worth leaving behind).
On a lighter note, my daughters make me realize that I am missing some interesting animal-themed television. We watched and discussed the following programs:
Duck Dynasty: Similar in feeling to another family business drama, Billy the Exterminator only the business here is manufacturing duck callers.
My Cat From Hell: Similar in feeling to those nanny shows, but here the nanny is played by the very zen Jackson Galaxy. Mr. Galaxy basically has to train the cat guardians in “cat mojo” to save these poor, misunderstood felines. Truth be told I’m a dog person, but even I could see these poor cats were just frustrated and were using the only methods at their disposal to get some peace at the expense of their misguided owners.
Too Cute: Another Animal Planet offering where a film crew documents the infancy of domestic puppies and kittens from birth until weaning inside their respective owners’ homes. I like this show because the baby animals never have any “accidents” in these homes that apparently have no human inhabitants. Animal babies, like their human counterparts, are very cute and endearing. They have to be in order to trick us into taking care of them until they can fend for themselves. But I make an exception for the Cornish Rex — a long, skinny cat with large ears and soft, downy invisible fur. Feel free to Google them yourself for a picture. They are one of the Divine’s creatures, but they are not “too cute.”
And today we had a cross- generational experience watching Old-Timers Day on SNL. Back in olden times if you didn’t stay up to watch SNL in real time, you were left out of the conversation on Monday morning. But with the Internets we can now dog-pile into bed and watch it on Sunday morning. Last night’s episode was hosted by the exceptional Justin Timberlake, who became a bona fide five-time SNL host last night. With this milestone he joins the pantheon that includes (but is not limited to) Candice Bergen, Steve Martin, Alec Baldwin, and Tom Hanks. There was also an appearance by “The Wild and Crazy Guys” that made me realize I’m officially an old-timer myself. And I’m so glad to be here to share it with my grown-up kids who weren’t even a wish the first time I saw Dan Ackroyd and Steve Martin shake it. That’s happiness enough for me.