These were the things I did yesterday:
- Stay home with James who had pinkeye. I think pinkeye gets a bad rap, honestly. It has a gross name and it's associated with fecal matter and general filth. But as far as childhood ailments go, it could be worse. Aside from gunky eyes, the child is in fine spirits and the eyes start to heal even after just one round of drops (which I was able to get sent to the pharmacy without seeing the pediatrician.) While we were home together I did a conference call and everyone on it got to hear him going "Fuffle? Fuffle?" which is James-ese for "I dropped a waffle somewhere around here--can you help me find it?" Also, he had a temper tantrum because I thwarted him from climbing on the coffee table. While staring me down he threw a bunch of cloth finger puppets on the ground. To him it was a real "F you" moment and to me it was hilarious, like this scene from Wet Hot American Summer:
- Met up with some old friends. This, Steve and I agreed, was our Big Chill day -- a reunion of Chicago (and former Chicago) creative friends who were getting together for our friend Amy's memorial service. It was lovely--we remembered our friend caught up on our lives, and told some dumb jokes.
- Attended Amy's memorial service. What can I say. It was beautiful and sad and amazing. Her three kids each got up and paid tribute to her and they were so strong and wise and insightful. She would have been so proud of them.
- Took Paul to Take Kwon Do. Because that's parenthood. A profound intersection of life and death is bookended by pinkeye and a martial arts class.
- Got some sweet personalized Guinness pint glasses. Steve and I had plans to see a show last night and we had dinner beforehand. Guinness people had taken residence at the restaurant where we ate, with a promo that if you bought a pint of Guinness you could get a free personalized pint glass. I am sober for Lent (trust me, yesterday I could have really used a drink) but Steve gallantly drank two pints so I could get my glass.
- Saw a banjo concert. The entire day, I couldn't get over the fact that we still had a banjo show ahead of us. We saw Noam Pikelny, for whom Steve shot this promo video:
I'm not typically what you'd call a banjo aficianado but Noam put on a great solo performance, doing a home town show at the Old Town School of Folk Music (he's from Skokie, where all great banjoists hail from.) We were actually about to head home when Steve got a text from him inviting him to the green room to say hi, so we told the babysitter we'd be a bit late and went and hung out, feeling like big shots, if you are impressed by famous bluegrass players.
One of the recurring themes of Amy's memorial service was how much you need to live life while you're here. It's not like yesterday was necessarily the most profound day -- the beer freebies and pinkeye sort of offset the solemnity of the memorial service, but you can't say we didn't do a lot and go through a wide range of emotions (not only was it my first banjo concert, it was also my first service in a synagogue.) Although I won't mind if today is a bit less interesting.