29. Phew. It doesn't feel much different than 29 did last year. Had a lovely, though relatively uneventful birthday. The girls and I met Patrick at The Diner in Adams Morgan for lunch. As Esmee downed her first ever milkshake, I devoured a Philly cheesesteak and fries smothered in gravy. That alone made the day worthwhile (and life-threatening!). Later, Lon, Jonathan and Jason came up for fajitas and fireflies. Lon made a chocolate frosting-ed lemon cake. Mmmmm. Slept like an infant and woke up feeling not much older than I did before.
I've selected the books I'm going to use for the GW class. It's incredible how difficult the decision was. I was suddenly so self-conscious. I know it's silly, but really, I want these kids to like me. I also want them to like what they're reading. So, the choices have as much to do with gaining their trust as it does with want I want to teach them. I am using the Scribner Anthology of Contemporary Short Fiction (all post-1970 stuff). It's a good selection of some of my favorites. I'm also using a book which outlines all of the elements of fiction...important for an intro class. For the poetry portion, I found a book of exercises created by poet/teachers and an anthology called From Totems to Hip-Hop which is a sort of canon-blaster, including Tupac alongside Plath. It's got an angry introduction from the editor which if I don't assign, I'm fairly certain they won't read. Anyway, I am more drawn to the poetry than to the multi-cultural message it's trying to send...we'll see how it goes. It's always fun to add a new stack of books to my shelves. I also got several B & N and Borders gift cards to extend the Greenwood Lending Library.
I finished The Collector (John Fowles) today...the end was completely creepy for cheapy. It actually made the hair on my arms stand up. Next is The Known World by local yokle Edward P. Jones. Patrick gave it to me for my birthday (along with a gorgeous necklace and two citronella tiki torches). Anybody who is getting compared to Toni Morrison on a fairly regular basis deserves a try as far as I'm concerned.
Today was the street fair in Ocean Beach. We got calls all day. It made me homesick. The street fair is my favorite OB event. P's mom is in town, lavishing the girls with gifts and love. We had a crabfest tonight; the house still smells of salt, Old Bay, and newspaper ink. Tomorrow is the 3rd Annual Princess and the Pea party. I stayed up late last night prepping the art project -- magic wands which, unbeknownst to the princesses -- will glow in the dark. We're having strawberry shortcake, a pea hunt, and (for the mamas) sangria. I think there will be ten girls under five here tomorrow. All vying for the coveted tiara that the "real princess" (the one who finds the pea) wins. There just may be some tears.
Haven't touched the novel in almost a week.