Mom Thoughts

Date Night, Modern Art, & Pi Pizza

Dear Kid,

Last night was date night.

First Daddy and I went to the Contemporary Arts Center downtown. I generally modern art. Dad generally doesn’t. But this time we were in complete agreement—neither of us cared for the art currently on display.

My favorite part was the sign in the UnMuseum part of the exhibit that said not to climb on or lick the art.

I kid you not.

Here’s all this art that patrons are encouraged to touch and snuggle with and they feel a need for a sign that says not to lick any of the art.

It makes me seriously worry about the people going to the exhibit. Ick.

Then we went to dinner at Pi Pizza and Beer.

Pi Pizza and Beer. Date night dinner.

Pi Pizza

The décor was very, very Pi. The math symbol, not your sister.

We had πr2 (Pi Squares) for appetizers.

We had Pi Squares for appetizers.

Then we had pizza (surprise!) for dinner.

Pi Pizza

We didn’t have room for dessert (but I really liked the idea of a piece of Pi).

Pi Pizza Dessert Menu.

Date night was fun (but not entirely diet-friendly!).

Love, Mom

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The Sound of Silence? NYC Subways

Dear Kid,

IF you happened to be hanging around New York City in 1904, and IF you happened to wish to go from Here to There, and IF “here” was City Hall and “there” was 145th Street, and IF you had an extra nickel (which was real money at the time), and IF you happened to be insistent enough to push your way to the front of the line, you might have been on the first ride of the New York City subway.

The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls and tenements halls and whispered in the sounds of silence. Paul Simon. DearKidLoveMom.comActually, probably not. The then Mayor (George McClellan) was the “engineer” of the first run at 2:35pm (no idea how they chose that time), and one can only imagine that the first ride was full of dignitaries, wannabees, journalists, other hangers-on, and 70% of The City’s homeless.

The general public (that’s who you would have been) had to wait until 7pm to turn their nickel into underground transportation. That same ride costs $2.75 today.

A slice of New York City pizza (yum) tends to cost about as much as a ride on the subway. Seriously.

FACT: The world’s oldest underground train network was opened in London in 1863.

ANOTHER FACT: The first subway in the US was built in Boston.

YET ANOTHER FACT: NYC’s subway is bigger than either London’s or Boston’s because New York.

Until 1948, subway cost a nickel. That year the fare was raised to a dime (not two nickels because those wouldn’t fit in the new turnstiles).

Five years later, the fare was raised to 15 cents. But engineers couldn’t figure out how to create a turnstile that could accept two different coins. Enter the subway token.

For 50 years, tokens were the only way to pay to ride the subway and as fares rose, tokens changed—albeit less frequently than I would have expected. There were only 5 tokens over the years (not including the commemorative ones because I don’t want to include them).

Rather than pay for a token, thieves would sometimes jam the turnstiles and suck the tokens out of the slots. Kind of like slurping soup, but much more disgusting. To combat this, the MTA often sprayed the slots with chili powder. Ick.

ONE MORE FACT: Rather than pay for a token, thieves would sometimes jam the turnstiles and suck the tokens out of the slots. Kind of like slurping soup, but much more disgusting. To combat this, the MTA often sprayed the slots with chili powder.

These days, one uses a MetroCard to ride the subway. Which is much more efficient and much less fun.

AND STILL ONE MORE FACT: In 2008, 44 old NYC subway cars were dumped into the ocean off of the coast Maryland to serve as an artificial reef. To date, there have been no reports of fishy graffiti.

Happy New York City subway birthday day.

Love, Mom

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Fee, Fly, Fo, Fum

Dear Kid,

There’s a fly in the house.

And it seems to have adopted me.

No matter which room I’m in, there it is, following me around like a happy little puppy, buzzing and smacking into windows.

Have you ever noticed that flies have an amazing ability to land exactly 13½ inches higher than you can reach? They do this on purpose so that even with a magazine you have no chance whatsoever of swatting them.

God in His wisdom made the fly And then forgot to tell us why. Ogden Nash. DearKidLoveMom.comFACT: Flies only have two wings (most flying insects have four).

This causes an inferiority complex that makes them feel the need to buzz. Loudly. Some bugs are sneaky, subtle little things (for the record, I don’t like them either). Flies Make Their Presence Known.

Buzz, yourself, fly.

Flies are disgusting. Not only do they violate the Any More Than Four Legs is Utterly Unnecessary Rule, they are truly some of the yuckiest animals on the planet.

FACT: They can only eat liquids but they can turn many solid foods into a liquid by spitting or vomiting on it.


FACT: House flies tend to stay within 1-2 miles of where they were born but will travel up to 20 miles to find food.

Why this particular one has chosen our house is a mystery, since I firmly believe there are better cooks and worse housekeepers (although probably not many) within 2 miles.

FACT: Flies are the helicopters of the insect world. They can fly up, down, side to side, and backwards.

This makes them very good at evasive maneuvers. See “magazine” above.

FACT: This one does not have an invitation to be inside and had best buzz its noisy little self outside where it can be eaten by a bird.

Too late. Now I have fly-smoosh on my magazine. But at least it’s quiet in here.

Love, Mom

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Rabbits and Rubber Bands

Dear Kid,

Once again, the proper authorities have failed to consult me.

You know how rabbits are generally considered to be the best symbol of fertility and reproductive efficiency?

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

Rabbits are quite prolific little dudes. But they are nothing compared to rubber bands.

Rubber bands in the wild. DearKidLoveMom.comTo prove this, I voyaged into the wilds of our kitchen drawers to view the rubber bands in their natural environment.

Like most infestations, they’d wormed their way into some of the deepest, darkest corners and underneath all sorts of useful objects.

When I told Daddy I was going to declare open season on the R. B.s, he was not impressed. “We don’t have that many,” he told me.

I donned protective gear, left word with the station manager as to my coordinates, and dove in.

I scooped up a pile of rubber bands and put them on the counter.

“See?” said Daddy, “it’s not that many.”

“It’s an entire handful. More importantly, it’s just the first handful.”

I took a deep breath and dove back down to retrieve more.

And more.

And more. And more.

By the time we’d finally found most of the varmints who’d taken up residency in the kitchen, the pile was six or seven feet tall. And it was growing as we watched. Clearly, rubber bands have no need for privacy.

I pinned Dad with a Stare. A severe Stare. A Stare meant to convey the enormity of the rubber band problem.

“Whaaaat?” was his comment.

“Deal with it,” was mine.

I’m still waiting. Which worries me since (according to my calculations) the rubber bands will have taken control of our entire living space by next Tuesday.

Love, Mom

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10 Emjois We Absolutely Have to Have

Dear Kid,

Did you know there’s a committee that reviews new emojis? I had no idea they required approval, but it turns out they do.

So Committee for Reviewing Appropriate Pics (yes, I made it up, but it’s a great acronym—take a moment to figure it out) meets and thinks about which emojis the world cannot, simply cannot, live without.

What emojis are they considering? The almond. Half a coconut. A pie.

And it gets better. A mermaid. A climber. A person meditating. And a woman breastfeeding.

Emojis being considered. Seriously? Who needs a half coconut emoji? These ideas are clearly better.

Emojis being considered. Seriously? Who needs a half coconut emoji?

“Emoji” means pictograph and has nothing to do with the word “emotion” which is good because almonds are not known for being emotional.

Seems to me the committee could use some guidance (seriously, who needs a half coconut emoji?). So, being the kind of mom I am, I have put together a list of suggested emojis which will clearly improve the world as we know it.

  1. Attacking Squirrel – This is a picture of a squirrel that has (somehow) made its way to the birdfeeder and has caused someone (like your father) to go into a paroxysm of the explosive and squirrel-defying nature. Two in a row mean “call an ambulance.”
  2. Empty Coffee Cup – Related to the sad emoji, this is a warning symbol to let everyone know that someone’s caffeine intake has been insufficient and they can choose to argue at their own risk.
  3. Shoe Sale – A type of call to arms (for shoppers) mixed with a warning to Get The Heck Off The Interstate If You Aren’t Going Shoe Shopping.
  4. Burned Dinner Warning – In the shape of a pizza or other takeout.
  5. Explosive Diaper – Related to rock-scissor-paper-lizard-Spock (extra points if you get the reference), this is a game for new parents when the baby has been overly enthusiastic about using his or her diaper.
  6. Sink Full of Dishes – Easily interpreted as “I cooked; you clean.”
  7. Broken Telephone – Signaling telemarketers and election pollsters.
  8. Disastrous Breakup – Clear communication that the receiver’s job is to agree with everything the sender says no matter how ridiculous or contradictory. And to bring ice cream (don’t bother with bowls).
  9. Smudged Nail Polish – Meaning, I’m about to polish my nails so expect a lot of misspellings because not messing up the polish is more important than grammar. Can also mean, someone just caused me to smudge my polish and I am obviously therefore about to commit murder.
  10. Whoop Joyous – The election is over. Let the post-election nonsense begin. Also a signal to late-night comedians that they will actually have to work to find something to talk about.

Seriously, I do not understand why more people don’t consult me about such things.

Love, Mom

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Happy Mole Day!

Dear Kid,

It’s National Mole Day.

I am a Mole. You're Not.

Who is Avogadro?

Not the kind of mole that has Dad doing the Squish-Down-The-Mole-Hole dance in the backyard (although, when you think about it, that might deserve a day of its own too).

This is the mole as in Avogadro’s number (6.02 x 10 ^23).

So we celebrate on 10/23 from 6:02am to 6:02pm. Get it?

A mole is defined as the amount of a chemical substance that contains as many elementary entities (e.g., atoms, molecules, ions, electrons, or photons) as there are atoms in 12 grams of carbon-12 (12C), the isotope of carbon with relative atomic mass 12 by definition. (So says Wikipedia)


More importantly, we celebrate this day in remembrance of the mole project you did in high school in which we had to create a stuffed character mole (hockey. I remember hockey, but I can’t remember the exact name….) and during which we learned to say the phrase, “Is going to be a beetch to sew.” Possibly the first time you heard your mother talk that way, which made it funny as all get out.

It was fun.

It was a bitch to sew.

But we did it together and that made it OK.

And you never forgot Mole Day or Avogadro.

Neither did I.

Love, Mom


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