Our thirteen year old granddaughter spent the night with us last night. Normally, if we had a kidlet in the house I would assign them our spare bedroom, but since everything is in a state of flux sleeping downstairs isn’t an option, unless I wrapped her in newspaper and tucked her in a U-Haul box. My other half is a creature of the night making her sleeping on our couch, however comfortable, an unlikely option. For lack of other avenues, I handed Rick a pillow and blanket and the kidlet bunked in with me. As little people, my two always slept in their own beds. At the time, the “family bed” did not come into play unless it was the only bed you could afford, and children for the most part slept in the room designated for them. If ill or frightened, however, one or the other would show up, teddy bear or blankie in tow and climb into bed with us. In most cases that was the beginning of their good nights sleep and the end of mine, last night was no exception. Children, or so it would seem, are incapable of being still when they sleep any more than when awake. Between the mumbling, thrashing, all out combat for a piece of the covers, and feet twitching, I believe I managed to log at least 20 minutes of restful shuteye before the alarm went off.
As she had school today, apparently it was necessary to begin preparing for the event two hours prior to leaving the house. My other half having gone to bed just before 3 a.m. woke to find the noise level in house hovering just below jet take off. Blow dryers, showers, coffee pot, and lights made sleeping about as likely as picking Saturday nights lottery numbers. Pouring a cup of coffee he wandered the house muttering something under his breath about the eradication of the female gender, and repeating “we should never have given them the vote”.
I have to say, the girl comes with more electrical equipment than the space shuttle. In one bathroom a crimper and blow dryer were plugged in, and, a curling iron was blinking in the other. Pink lace tights, which I was ready to veto if going for a solo flight, were covered by a pair of jeans displaying a series of shredded holes traveling in intervals up and down both legs, allowing the pink lace tights to peek through the gaps. I was informed these jeans were more expensive than those without holes and very popular with the kids. Who knew?
My other half was fascinated in even such a young version of a woman so much face time in the mirror was required, particularly for a day at middle school. When going to an office every day I spent a good deal more effort getting ready to leave the house than is required now. Forty minutes at the outside for me to shower, wash my face, brush my teeth, apply a little war paint, and brush my hair. I simply do not have two hours to devote to making myself totally irresistible every morning. The world, will simply have to manage with the visage of Susie Nelson in her natural state of being.
Things certainly have changed since I was in high school or middle school. To date myself, girls back in the day couldn’t wear pants to school, much less low riding shorts and midriff bearing tops. Boys wouldn’t have been allowed on campus with their underwear more on the outside than on the inside, and a backwards ball cap on their head. As I pulled into the school parking lot I was surrounded by a sea of color when it came to hair, everything from neon green to competition orange, some having a sort of rainbow snow cone effect. It’s funny kids over the years have chosen different ways to express themselves for their generation. They’ve swung as far to one side at this juncture as they can without showing up at school actually in their underwear, so I can’t help but wonder where they’ll go from here. Another thing I find interesting are ear plugs. Holes are stretched in their ear lobes by inserting increasingly large plugs. This is certainly not an original behavior. Many African tribes stretch body parts with rings or jewelry. In Brazil the Suya tribe stretches their ears to hear the spirits better. Tattoos, also very popular these days, date back some 5,000 years.
I suppose looking back, I wore hot pants and mini skirts when popular, and even owned a set of love beads. Each generation has demonstrated some form of rebellion from their less age challenged members. Perhaps it is a right of passage from childhood into adulthood where you will be handed many rules and standards of living to keep you in line. A last grasp at freedom before life expects you to own up and pay the bill.
It will be interesting, if I have the privilege, to see what’s coming next. I must admit at times I have a hard time picturing the president of the United States twenty some years from now being sworn in wearing a hoodie, lime green highlights, and a pair of pants with the crotch residing just above the knee cap, whose speech is “OMG, this is fly, gotta bounce cause I’m chillin’ with my homeboys”.
Blackened Tilapia with Tomato and Caper Salsa
4 tilapia filets
3 Tbsp. hot paprika
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. onion powder
1/2 black pepper
1/2 tsp. lemon pepper
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 Tbsp. grapeseed or olive oil
1 lemon, halved
Combine ingredients 2-9 in small bowl (spices). Wash filets and pat dry with paper towel. Press rub into both sides of filets and refrigerate for 1 hr. Allow to rest for 15 mins. at room temperature before cooking.
Heat oil over med-high heat. When oil is begins to smoke, add the filets and cook 2-3 mins. per side. Squeeze 1/2 lemon over top and plate. Quarter other 1/2 lemon and serve on plates. Serves 4
Tomato and Caper Salsa
1 cup chopped Roma tomatoes
1/4 cup green bell pepper, chopped
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped fine
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp. capers, drained
2 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp. EV olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Mix together all ingredients and chill for at least 1 hr. before serving with fish.