Monday, October 27, 2014

Note to self: Know what you are taking your kid to see

I am a big fan of performances. I particularly love musicals. For many years I had a subscription to Pittsburgh Musical Theater (nee Gargaro), but then my husband opened a restaurant, I had to take a 25 percent pay cut, and I had a baby, all within a six-month period, so that ended that.

About five years ago, we discovered Gemini Theater, a wonderful production company that puts on reasonably priced interactive performances geared towards children. We attend a few show every year, but J is kind of old for them. 

Earlier this year, PMT put on Le Miz. I had never seen it but knew a little about it. Some of it was adult-related, but the musical director (my former choir director) assured me those things would go over J's head, so I took her. He was right; the brothel scene was just a dance hall for all she knew. J enjoyed the performance, as did I, though she admitted parts were confusing. 

This summer, PMT had a preview performance for their upcoming season, which included A Chorus Line. I saw that (via the movie) over 20 years ago, and really liked it, but was recalling some of it was not suitable for kids. 

Fast-forward two months, I bought two tickets for me and J, completely forgetting that several parts were not kid-friendly. Sunday afternoon, about 10 minutes into the performance, I finally remembered! Oops!

The cursing made me cringe a little, but I could live with that. The dialogue about wet dreams, erections, and sex, on the other hand, made me wish the show would hurry up and end, which was a shame, because it was so good. 

Then one of the characters started talking about her tits, using that very word. I am pretty sure I stopped breathing at that point, because I remembered one of the songs I had completely forgotten about: "Dance: Ten; Looks: Three" which is also known as "Tits and A$$." Looking at the program, I was guessing I had a few minutes before that came on, so I considered just leaving. I don't normally care what others think, but I was convinced at that point that the people on either side of me thought I was an awful parent, and that bothered me as much as J's hearing the sex, boob, and F words.

I apologized to J for the inappropriateness of the musical, and then I asked if she wanted to go, reminding her we did not eat lunch. She said she wanted to stay. So we did.

We got through that, though not without my wishing the floor would swallow us both up. When a character started taking about being a drag queen, it was a welcome relief. Before I knew it, the excellent performance ended, and as we left, I did discover J was not the only kid under 13 there (a number of performers and musicians were in high school). 

In the end, I am not sorry I took my kid. The theater is important to me, as is supporting local arts. And I have certainly sheltered J more than most parents would.

As long as she does not start belting out "Dance: Ten; Looks: Three" when she sings in the shower, I think we will be okay. :-)

Saturday, October 18, 2014

First place!

So I ran in my first 5k in two years this morning. I ran in the Race for Pace, which is one of my favorites because it is local (10 minutes from where I live) and Pace School does great things for kids with emotional and behavioral disorders.

I initially wanted to finish in under 35 minutes, but once I realized that I ran the race in 28:55 two years ago, I decided I had to do better than 35. Even though back then I ran, swam and did Zumba weekly, and I was two years younger, I refused to settle for something six minutes slower. For the love of FloJo, I am not that old and out of shape.

So I set a new goal of 33 minutes, though I was really, really hoping to do it in 31 minutes.

Ladies and gentlemen: This Supergirl finished in 29:21.

And, best of all, I got first page in my age group, 40-44 (or 40 and Fabulous, as I like to call it).



It turns out there were only three people in my age group, but I was still first! (If I had finished third, I would have been pretty bummed) I finished 67/159 overall. For someone who is apparently middle aged and past her running prime, I am proud of myself.

Supergirl!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

What kind of guy would wear a shirt like this?

I started running again about five months ago, somewhat sporadically. But about two months ago, I decided that maybe, just maybe, I could run in a 5k again. So I figured I had better start running once a week, if I had any hope of running the entire thing. Once you are fully entrenched in your 40s, it is a little more difficult to just run a few times over the course of a couple of months and go out and do a 5k. Or so I would imagine.

The 5k I am running in next week is the Race for Pace. This year, they are having a super hero theme. Me being me (well, I being I) embraced that wholeheartedly and decided to wear something super hero-ish. At first, I thought I could go as the Flash. I figured it would be ironic because I was probably going to finish in the bottom 25 percent (maybe worse, but let's not think about that). People would see this middle-aged woman panting and barely jogging as she was halfway through the race, and they would laugh. I am always happy to provide a few laughs. :-)

But yesterday, I headed to Dick's and found this nice Superman (maybe Supergirl?) Under Armour t-shirt. It is subtle for sure, but I am pretty certain I would not embarrass myself, no matter how slowly I end up running.


I next went to Target to get a few things, and I happened upon this gem of a shirt. In the men's department, no less.

That red piece of fabric coming off the back shoulders? A mini cape! Of course, I had to buy it. And it was about a third of the price as the Superman UA shirt.

I so totally want to wear this shirt, although I have some qualms about the muscle definition in the front. I have pretty decent abs and all, but not a male six pack.

But honestly, the big thing that would keep me from wearing this shirt? The small part of me that thinks I can run the race in a decent enough time that I just don't want a cape slowing me down.

Stay tuned for what I end up wearing. But as my title asks, what guy would wear a shirt like this? Or maybe the question is where would a guy wear a shirt like this? Because I want to know!




Sunday, October 5, 2014

Decisions, decisions

On Friday, I had planned to leave work a few hours early. Because the bus I ride runs every 30 minutes that time of day, some planning is involved. So after being too busy to make the 1:19 bus, I left at 1:44, which would give me 5 minutes to make the 1:49 bus.

As I was about 2/3 of the way down the street, I saw two buses at the stop, across the street. I looked at my phone and saw it was 1:47. Since it was early, I told myself it was unlikely either bus was mine, so I decided not to run the rest of the way down the hill, knowing the light would change before I got there. Fortunately when I got to the bottom of the hill, I saw the buses, now a block away, were not mine. Less fortunately was it was raining harder than a sprinkle, and I had yet to replace my recently broken umbrella. 

Before I knew it, 10 minutes had gone by, as did five other buses, and I started to fret. Maybe my bus had come early. After all, the drizzle did not seem to be enough to justify a delay. 

When a couple more minutes had passed, I was wet, cranky, and wishing I would finally get into a campus parking lot, so I could give up the bus. After all, in about 15 months, I had not only gotten into my third choice of lots (which I turned down), my name had also moved up about 40 people for my first choice.

Eventually, I had come back to reality. The bus showed up, 15 minutes late, and I got over my ire fairly quickly. However, ironically enough, when I checked my work email a few minutes into the ride, I saw an email from the parking people. I had gotten into my lot!

My first reaction was almost dread, because I would have to decide whether or not to take it. To some people, it would be a no-brainer; jump on it. But for me? I had some real debating to do.

I pay nothing to ride the bus, as my employer pays for it. A monthly lot permit costs $85. Sure, I paid almost twice that the first 4.5 months at my job when I parked at a cash lot (one of the cheapest!), but I have gotten used to what essentially became a $156/raise. 

And I hate driving home in traffic, something I largely avoid busing it. Then there is the additional wear and tear in my car and more money to spend in gas.

But, of course, there are positives to parking. I can come to work late (which I almost never do because I drop my perfect-attendance-seeking kid off to school daily). If you get to the bus lot much past 8:30 or so, you might not get a parking space. I can also leave when I want. Having to time that with a bus has been an issue. 

And this lot is a 2-minute walk to the office. So I would save time there (but would get less exercise).

I have to drive to and from the bus lot, so there is wear and tear on my car and gas expenditure.

I have 1.5 weeks to figure it out. If I turn it down, I can get back on the list. But the last person on the list is #47. When I got on the list 1.5 years ago, I was #37. (In the same amount of time, I went from 529 to 205 for my second choice, but if I turn down my first choice, I lose my second choice, as I understand it.)

I am slightly leaning towards yes. I figure I can still take the bus a few times a month, although I would be paying for a lot I am not using. But it is an option. 

Decisions, decisions...