Don’t Leave Me Hanging

8 08 2008

Please pardon my blogging slackness lately. The Blister family is still recovering from a road trip to the little house in the big woods. And I am still recovering from the fact that I’ve landed a nice heap of freelance writing work. Yes, I am officially writing for fun and profit these days. So, our week-long jaunt to my parent’s little house in the big woods was one of both business and pleasure. The business part was me interviewing some fascinating local business people for some feature profile stories. The pleasure part was attending the backyard wedding of my childhood next-door neighbour. Except in the big woods, there isn’t really such a thing as next-door. More like we shared the same big long dirt driveway, and could holler to each other from our doorsteps, even though we could not always see each other through the thicket of trees, or the blackness of a country night. For as long as I can remember we played together and partied together. She is one of my oldest and dearest friends.

Despite being from opposite sides of the world (she from the same big woods as me, he from Tokyo) M & M found each other, and they are a beautiful pair. Their wedding ceremony was a pure reflection of that. They made their heartfelt vows in her parents’ backyard garden, near a babbling brook, and the place where we spent countless nights gathered around a bonfire wailing out campfire classics like “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door.” There was a gourmet meal, free flowing wine to toast old friends and new lives, and a round of speeches that would bring tears to a glass eye. But the part I was looking most forward to was the reception. Or, as it’s better known where I come from, “The Time.” For months, I’ve been psyching myself up for M&M’s Time. Some people might envision an elegant evening of dining and dancing which slowly winds to a peaceful culmination at a reasonable hour. What I had in mind for this occasion – the first wedding I’ve been to since my own almost seven years ago, the wedding of a friend who is more like my sister, the wedding taking place only a short, rocky stagger from the little house in the big woods, in a place where parties have been known to rage on from sunset to rise – was a full on revival of my wasted youth. For at least eight or ten hours. Oh yes, I had plans for the time I’d be having at M&M’s Time. This Blister was ready to shrug off the shackles of motherhood, and party like it was 1999. Or, possibly 1995, depending on who was doing the DJ-ing.

Back in those days, I could hang. Start a party at 4 p.m and rock right on through until 4 a.m? Nooo problem. Consume disturbing amounts of various substances and still be functional enough to make it to my early morning Political Science class, or write my Women’s Studies mid-term? You betcha. Watch and laugh as other people lost their cool after just a few rounds of jell-o shooters and a hit from the bong? Hahahahell yeah. I was one of those girls who could party most people under the table. And by times, would quite happily party myself under the table, then crawl out from under that table ready for more. That was hanging. And I could do it. Back in the day.

Clearly, times have changed. These days, if I’m up at 4 a.m, it’s because somebody needs either a barfie bowl or a boob. The only thing I consume disturbing amounts of is tea and fiber, and I’m so bloody functional by 8 a.m that I could teach a Political Science class and grade two dozen Women’s Studies mid-terms. Simultaneously. While breastfeeding. And making breakfast. While getting my yoga on in downward dog. My jell-o almost never has booze in it anymore, the bong has been turned into a deceptively decorative flower vase, and although my cool is probably not actually lost, it’s pretty damn hard to find under the piles of laundry and toys. It might even be under the table. But if that’s the case, it is probably so covered with old food bits and dust grizzlies that I don’t want it back. Yes, my hardcore partying days have given way to more important things. Like making mushed sweet potatoes, and giving bum wiping lessons, and explaining why keeping half eaten peaches in your bedroom so you can have a snack later on is not as brilliant as it seems. And I’m glad that this is my life, rather than the lonely existence of a perpetual party hunting barfly hovering on the cusp of a booze soaked cougar-hood. But, like I said, every once in a while, I like kick off my sensibly maternal goody-two-shoes to reveal my dark and funky party girl socks. Every once in a while, I need to prove to myself that I can still hang.

So that was my plan for M&M’s wedding Time. And it went down a little something like this:

5 pm – Enjoy lovely backyard ceremony, while simultaneously acting as cozy pillow for sleeping Squiggles and Head of Diversionary Tactics for restless Neener and Roo.

6 pm – Walk up to the little house in the big woods with the rest of my family to feed Squiggles some mushed peas, and knock back a vodka and soda before the wedding feast festivities began.

7 pm – Mmmmmmm. Food. Mmmmmmm. Wine. Mmmmm. Table full of wussy white wine drinkers who must share one bottle, while I bogart the bottle of red all to myself. Muahahahahahaha!

9:30 pm – Teeter up the hill to the little house in the big woods, tuck in children, and leave them under the watchful eye of my parents while the Mr. and I make our way back down the hill to the party.

10:30 pm – Mmmmmm, vodka and cranberry juice and Bon Jovi songs!

11:00 pm – Mr. heads up the hill to take his shift looking after the kids.

11:15 pm – Blinding headache hits me. Mmmmmmm. Bottle of water.

11:40 pm – Guns n’ Roses song! Blinding headache intensifies. Mmmmm. Another bottle of water.

11:55 pm – Headache, dizzy, queasy. Must…go…rest.

11:59 pm – Some shadowy characters on the dark dirt drive way offer me a drag of a suspicious smelling cigarette. I really should have passed.

12:00 am – At the stroke of midnight, I turn into a pumpkin. A nauseous, dizzy pumpkin who just wants to go home and go to bed.

12:03 am – Arrive at the little house in the big woods, determined to just rest my head for a few minutes, then get back to proving that I can, indeed, still hang.

12:09 am – Oh, I can hang alright. Hang my head in the flush and get violently, violently ill.

12:16 am- Done like dinner, I am forced to admit that I can not hang. I’m too old, too mothered up, and probably going to be too hungover in the morning to ever attempt to do anything like this again. Ever. Hardly able to tolerate the shame of it all, I conk out.

6 am – I wake up, still with a horrendous headache, to the sight of a grinning Squiggles, and realize that it’s probably for the best that I couldn’t, and didn’t , and can’t hang anymore.

So, I spent the rest of the morning-after stewing in my own partying failure. Until everyone in the house woke up and told me that the party had not actually rocked on until the break of dawn as I had assumed. It barely made it to the break of 2. The karaoke machine didn’t work. The bride and the groom were pooped. It got chilly. In fact, the only hardcore party people left on the scene at 2 am were the old folks. My parents and their friends. All the people my age had the good sense to go home and go to bed at a respectable hour, and before they got too drunk to get sick. So I felt better about that. That I had not missed much. But there was still the issue of being so very ill after what, compared to my party-girl prime, was little more than a drop in the ol’ booze bucket. And even throughout the entire post-party day, I felt like hell. Despite the lack of actual hanging to be done, it was still painfully clear that hanging was no longer my forte. But then came a ray of light, of hope. Neener and my father woke up, on the day after the day after, with headaches. Swiftly followed by the barfies. Hallelujah, It was a bug! I can hang! My family is sick! Yay! The Mr. didn’t get sick (he almost never does, the jerk) but that’s good because he was able to single handedly repaint the entire main floor of the little house in the big woods, and rebuild the basement deathtrap-steps with the help of my less-than-handy brother, while we all recuperated and cursed the piss-pouring rain for the next two days.

So now I’m back home, left wondering if maybe, just maybe, I can still hang. Which is certainly better than knowing, or thinking I can’t. And next Time, I’ll be there. And I will hang. Oh yes, I will hang. At least until midnight.

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4 responses

9 08 2008
Lisa

Hello! You’re back. It sounds like you still had a great time (minus the dizzyness, headaches and restless kids). Congrats on landing so much work! That’s great news. (:

21 08 2008
trish

I will hang with you, girlie, anytime.

28 08 2008
Laura

It was great reading about M&M’s wedding. Don’t feel bad that the “old folks” were the ones that were able to stay up later than the kids-they’ve had more practice. As your former babysitter, I’m just amazed that you finally went to bed before 1 AM! There will come a day when the kids are older and you will be able to hang again. Beautiful kids by the way-your folks showed me some pictures.

23 09 2008
Meg

I am quite sure you can still hang. But the jet lag and the harsh glare of “real life” make me fear that my hanging days are over. xoxoxox

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