So I’m out to dinner with my Mommy Friends Group (code for Drinking Club) and a new acquaintance Amanda up and says something about “My Christmas cards are sitting on the dining room table, still in the packaging, radiating guilt.” I did what I always do when someone says something super-clever that I totally plan on plagiarizing for my blog later: I got out my tiny notebook and scribbled it down.
When I went to read it later, it didn’t look so much like “radiating guilt” as “rating gut.” That’s okay—I can read my own writing.
I thought about Amanda’s Christmas cards, already purchased. She is, like, five steps ahead of me. If her cards (that she already owns) are calling out to her, then mine (still at Target) are broadcasting: “MOV! If you don’t buy your cards this week, then: A.) There won’t be a decent selection left, and you might in fact have to buy an assortment (gasp) and then all the cards being sent to friends on opposite coasts who don’t even know each other and will most likely never meet unless it is at your funeral will receive completely different cards! And B.) You are totally running out of time to write them in the first place, what is your problem, are you not really a Virgo anymore? I am totally calling the Administration of Horoscopers to get you fined or at least a warning.”
My (future) Christmas cards are not so much radiating guilt as broadcasting shame and screaming obscenities.
Last year was easy. I stuck the photo chip from the camera into some sort of magical photo card slot on the computer adapter, clicked a few keys starting with “Shutterfly,” and Voilà! beautiful cards with Tall and Short were mailed to me mere days later (in retrospect, I should’ve just paid the extra to have them mailed directly to the recipients).
This year is a different story. When I bought my new computer (you can come back and read that whole saga here), it did not have the special adapter thingamajig to upload photos and order from Shutterfly. I was forced to walk a block down the street (okay, I drove) to my favorite drug store and have them print up the photos. So that part is done, at least. (And this Christmas, it is not just the kids. For once, I am in the photo—as is The Husband—because I was having the rare occurrence, a “Good Hair Moment” and those types of events need to be celebrated and recorded. And oh, yeah, Tall lost about five baby teeth and the new ones sprouted in. And Short grew four inches in two days and is almost taller than Tall, I might have to switch their names.)
I show The Husband the wonderful photo we are using, and he says (typical male), “Why is the photo just loose and not part of a card? The ones we sent last year had the photo as part of the card. I think you bought them on Shutterplace or something like that? And as long as we’re talking about it, the one your cousin Jessica just sent is super-cool because on the back of the photo card it has her ‘Top Ten Highlights for 2011’—we should do that. And did you know one of her top tens was that she ran a marathon?”
The Husband gets a wistful look on his face, possibly thinking about how hot my cousin Jessica is and how she ran a marathon while his lovely wife (me) can only run three miles tops and that is if I am being chased, or possibly he is thinking about the time he ran a marathon (oh, goody, another story!) and wondering if I wrote that in the Christmas card that year.
“Sweetie,” I say through clenched teeth, “Jessica obviously has a lot of free time on her hands to run marathons and write perky Christmas cards …”
“She has five kids. The youngest is a baby.”
“Okay, well, I didn’t mean time so much as craziness. She is a Virgo.”
“You’re a Virgo.”
“You are totally missing the point. The point is, our stupid computer does not have the magical converter thing to do photos.”
I shrug, emphasizing my point. If our computer could read photo information, my life would be completely different and the cards would already be ordered, addressed, sent, received, and displayed. Like Jessica’s.
“That’s not true, MOV. If you just press on that panel on the front of the hard drive, it opens up and that is where you put in your memory card. I’ll show you.”
We walk upstairs (well, he sprints because he wants to show off that he is right for once, and I lag behind as I hate hate hate being wrong, especially when it comes to anything electronical) and he shows me what he was talking about.
“See, MOV? Right here.” He points. “Our computer is really smart! It can do a lot of things!”
My computer does not radiate guilt. It radiates superiority.
*with thanks to Amanda for the inspirational phrase