Friday, October 17, 2014

Taking Control of the Beast

There's an expression I've gotten fond of using while working with my tutoring clients.  When they express to me their dislike/annoyance/absolute soul-wrenching-hatred for a concept or task, I tell them that they've got to reach out and "take control of the beast."  The ones who are old enough to get the metaphor tend to roll their eyes at me.  The ones who are too young and literal get wide eyed and nervously ask where is this beast to which I am referring.

I love messing with them.

Kidding.  Anyway, here's an example of what I'm talking about.  I have a client with whom I've been working four years.  He's a freshman in high school now and he HATES fractions (which seems to be the normal reaction to fractions amongst my group of clients).  And though every year that we've worked together, fractions continue to make an appearance in his math classes, every year he gets upset and nervous whenever we have to work a problem with fractions in it.

"Uh, what's that doing there?"he'll ask, referring to the fraction that showed up in a linear inequality.  He's eyeing it like one would eye a cockroach that shows up for a dinner party.

I reply in a calm, soothing voice.  "It's a fraction.  I told you, they don't go away.  But it's okay, you know how to do this."

"No!  No I don't!" He's freaking out, which he does once or twice a lesson.  "I've never seen this before in my life."  I push away the urge to bang my head against the table because working with someone with severe ADD is sometimes like working with Dory from Nemo.  We've done fractions in one way or another since he was in 5th grade. I can almost feel the hairs on my scalp turning gray as he's swearing complete ignorance of fractions.

Instead I raise my eyebrows and tell him "You've got to stop being afraid of fractions.  Every time we come across one, you only want to know enough to get you through the problem.  You've got to reach out and take control of the beast, man!  Only then will you be released from your fear and power and mastery will be yours, all yours!"

Yes, I really am that dorky with my clients.  They love it.  (At least the cool ones do.)

Anyway, it didn't happen with that lesson, but he did eventually change his mindset about fractions.  I think when I named "fear" as the reason fractions were so hard for him, he realized that he wasn't powerless.  It helped that fourteen year old boys don't like to be told that they are scared of something.  I used that knowledge to my full advantage.

In using that expression with my clients, I've also realized how much it applies to life in general.  How many tasks do we procrastinate on because they feel overwhelming?  For one reason or another, we're afraid of the issue and we learn to cope around it.  This works for a while, but the problem is that the real issue never goes away.  It hangs around like a little monkey on our back, creating chaos and unrest in our lives.

Probably like you, I have more than a few beasts.  Some of them are really small.... things like cleaning the bathrooms.  I usually avoid that beast for as long as I can, (at least until it becomes clear that we're violating health codes).  That beast is the worst, especially because it keeps coming back every week.

And then there's my big beast- the one I've been ignoring for a while: what am I going to do with my life beyond the kids?  I have a college degree and a teaching credential.  When I left the classroom right before I had J, I did it with every intention of going back someday.  But now.... I don't know.

When I was a young girl, I wanted to be a writer.  I have always felt that that's what I'm supposed to be doing.  This blog is a half-hearted attempt at doing something about that goal.  Yet, I haven't pursued anything beyond that.  I've written stories that I never submit, and I only share my post with my Facebook friends because it's safe.  Though I have friends and acquaintances who tell me that my writing is good, I doubt them and wonder about the people who don't say anything.  I listen to all my own insecurities, believe them, and take little action towards my dream, all because I'm afraid.  

So, the point of me being embarrassingly vulnerable right now and telling you all this is that I'm going to be make some changes to this blog.  I don't know what those changes are going to be.  I may be changing the formatting and marketing this blog in more forums.  Or, I may be shutting this blog down completely and turning MeanieMom into a book (although with a different title because truth be told, I have never really like the name of the blog).

Either way, what's important is not necessarily that I'm successful in either attempt.  Success would be nice, but it's not my main priority.  I just want to tame this beast.  It's been on my back too long, and I want to do something about it.  You readers, my little Facebook family, have been so wonderful to me.  When I say thanks for reading, it's such an understatement, because every time you all leave a comment, or even just "like" a post, it gives me validation.  Some people will say that one shouldn't need validation from others to feel good about their work, but in this case, that's BS.  Writers write to be read.  You read my stuff.  I feel like a writer.  Thank you.

So have a good weekend, guys.  Get out there and tame your own beasts.  Or, you know, just relax, enjoy your weekend and worry about the beast on Monday.  Whatever you want.  I love you all either way.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Come, Sit on My Imaginary Sofa



This has been our living room since the end of August.  Two patio chairs, a kid table, a dog bed, and then nothing but big, big empty space.  I posted a pic a few weeks ago of Roo watching The Love Boat while sitting in one of the beach chairs.  A friend commented that she thought that this was on purpose to enhance the whole ambience of the show.  Um, no.  It's just the current level of glamour this household has been living at for the last two months.

I'm sure you're asking the logical question: where's the couch? To which I would answer, "Where, indeed?"

We are experiencing a bit of a couch fiasco.

In August, we decided to buy a new couch.  The one we had was used, and though it had served us and it's previous family well, cushions were sagging, threads were fraying, and it was generally looking a little sad.  It didn't help that the kids had a habit of constantly leaning over the back cushions to speak with me in the kitchen- so much so that the chaise cushion ended up permanently squashed into a forty five degree angle. I don't know which bothered me more- the wonky cushions or me, having to constantly exclaim "STOP LEANING OVER THE COUCH!!!".

Probably the latter.

Anyway.  We went down to a local furniture store, found a set we loved and bought it.  Delivery was set for 5 days in the future.  We came home, put our old couch on Craigslist, sold it promptly, and waited for the delivery of the new couch.

It came, but it wasn't what we expected.  We thought we were buying a living room set (because that's how it was advertised) and we thought that set included a recliner (because that recliner was sitting with the set), but when it came, we only received two pieces of furniture- no recliner (because we had not yet learned our lesson about reading small print carefully. Lesson is now learned.)

So, with some minor arguing, that set went back and we were refunded.  Back to square one, we drove out of town to a furniture store in Rancho Cucamonga and bought a new set.  It was to be delivered in 2 weeks.

Well.  I'm not going to bore you with the details, but two weeks came and went.  Then three. We called, got one story, called a few days later, got a different story, and the bottom line is that I received a phone call a few days ago (the first from them, up to that point we had to call them to track down our couch).  The gentleman informed me that the couch's delivery date was being moved up another few weeks  and that we weren't likely to receive it until the end of the month.

Friends.  When I am upset, there are two likely outcomes with me.  I will either remain polite and the offending party will have no idea that I'm angry with them, or I will completely loose it and hop a train to crazy town.  I wish I knew how to behave somewhere in the middle there, because I would love for people to know that I'm angry without also thinking that I'm nuts, but I've never been able to manage that.

So, upon hearing this news, I was quiet for a moment.  Then I very calmly asked him if he was kidding. He replied that he was sorry, he wasn't.  And that's when the pudding went to poop.  I started screeching something about customer service and demanded to know why a couch that was supposed to take 2 weeks is ending up taking eight weeks, and how we have a big empty hole in our living room.

And that's when I did something completely insane.

I saw that big hole in our living room and had a little glimmer of spiteful inspiration. The little voice in my head whispered "Yes! Say it!", and the next thing I knew, in my very most indignant voice, these words were coming out of my mouth: "I am having a party here in a few weeks.  A party... And there is a giant hole in my living room where a couch is supposed to be!  Where are my guests going to sit?"

You guys.  I am a ridiculous person.  There is no party. I made it up.  I was yelling at this customer service agent about how my imaginary guests are not going to have a place to sit at my imaginary party because......I don't know.  Maybe I was hoping that he'd think "Oh no!  She's having a party without a couch and it's all my company's fault!  Something should be done to get her couch to her sooner!"

But of course that didn't happen, and I got even more ridiculous. "Do you know what?  Do you KNOW what? When my guests are over here and we're all staring at the big empty space where the sofa should be, I am going to tell them all about this place and the terrible experience we've had with you!  All THIRTY FIVE of my guests will know exactly who is responsible for us not having a couch!"

That's right.  Out of my lips (surprising even me) came an exact number of imaginary guests. Thirty five.  Hmm.  Nice number.  Mostly couples, likely, with a few singles mixed in.  We'll all wear cocktail attire.  For some reason, I fancy the women accessorizing with those long cigarette holders.  Everyone can stand about posing with their martini glasses, clucking their tongues and staring at the spot where my couch should be while soft jazz music plays in the background.

Then they'll all go home and write on their imaginary social media accounts about how absolutely awful the furniture company is and then their imaginary friends will read it and pass it on, until it all gets back to this furniture company.  They'll have no choice but to give me my couch immediately because they have to save face since the whole world knows what a disaster they are.

You see?  It pays to have friends in imaginary places.

Except no, not really.

The customer service agent was completely unimpressed with my fantastical claim.  He just asked me in a bored voice if I wanted him to cancel the order so a refund could be issued.  With my rant over, I felt somewhat deflated.  I told him that I'd have to discuss it with my husband and that I'd call him back.

It's been three days and I haven't called them back because, ugh.  I don't want to deal with waiting for a refund.  I don't want to go out and look at more couches.  I don't want to wait for another delivery from another store that may turn out to be just as bad as this one.  I also don't want to be without a couch for another month.

So, with all that said, does anyone know of a reliable furniture store that is not likely to hold a sectional hostage for weeks on end?  Do good companies even exist anymore? I'm starting to wonder if good, honest stores are just a figment of my imagination.

Let me know your thoughts.

Friday, September 19, 2014

The Devil's Lot

Listen.  Before I wrote this, I had to sit down and have a long talk with myself about negativity. I had to ask myself how much of it I wanted to put out there in the world (ideally, none).  I had to mull over whether I've been using this blog space to complain about things too much (um, kind of- but I try to take these things and turn them into something fun and slightly entertaining, so I don't know? Does that count?)

I had to do all these things because what I want to write about this morning is most definitely negative.  It causes angry feelings to happen deep down in my soul, and unless you're Saint Teresa, it probably causes angry feelings deep in your soul too.  I've written about it before, probably too much,  and really, there is only so much you can say about this topic before it just gets old.

So let me just complain about the school parking lot one more time, and then I promise I will shut up about it forever.

I'm just going to say what is on everyones mind while we're circling and maneuvering around each other in that mess.  I'm going to put it out there, in very clear and simple language, because I don't want to hold it in anymore.  It's eating a hole through my heart, like a little worm.  And while I entertain fantasies of standing in the middle of the lot with a megaphone and shouting these truths at people, I know that to really do so would not end well.  So I'm getting it off my chest and writing it here.

First:  To the people who create their own lanes, stop it.  Stop it now.  I don't know what your perception of the world around you is, but the rest of us see lines of cars in rows (at my school it's specifically two rows).  When you put yourself in between those rows, without rhyme or reason, it's confusing to other drivers and maddening.  You deserve a wallop on the side of the head.  I hope it happens someday.

Second: If your child is not able to get him/herself out of the car by themselves, then I am so sorry, but you do not belong at curbside drop off during busy times.  If you have to hold all the other cars up while you put your car in park, get out of the car, walk around to the other side, and open up your child's door to let them out, then you should consider parking in the lot and walking your kids to the crosswalk.

Third: The same goes for drivers who have their kids put their backpacks in the trunk.  Seriously? Your kids can't just hold the backpacks on their laps for a few uncomfortable minutes until you arrive home? We all have to wait for you to get your car organized before you can roll your ass out of the way? How very self-centered of you. You're an idiot.

Fourth: Save the long conversations with your kids for another time.  Say a quick goodbye and get them out of the car.  In case you haven't noticed, there are 25 cars behind you waiting for your spot. Dummy.

Fifth: To the opportunist who speeds around the other cars and slips into a curbside spot out of turn, that's asshole behavior.  Don't be an asshole.

Sixth: If you are waiting curbside, please know that this is a line that moves.  I've seen people just park and pick up a book.  WTH, people? The line of cars circles out onto the street.  What are you thinking? Keep it moving, before someone reaches through your window and hits you over the head with your book.

And finally, if you are speeding-in other words, going over 10-15 miles an hour- I need to tell you something.  Lean in close.  YOU ARE IN A SCHOOL PARKING LOT.  That means THERE ARE SMALL CHILDREN EVERYWHERE.  They are coming out from behind big cars. They are lagging behind their parents.  They are clueless to big, heavy vehicles with drivers who lack the common sense to drive safely when they are around.  If you hit one of them, there isn't a name I can call you that will make you feel as bad as you'll feel knowing you injured some one's baby.  So slow down.
******

That's it.  Whew.  I do feel better.

On the bright side, I have noticed that there are lots of people showing kindness out there as well.  More than once, someone has let me go ahead of them with a smile and a wave.  That's happened a lot.  Gives me faith that we're not all stupid.

Okay, that's it.  Hopefully, me complaining like this won't have too negative an effect.  Who knows? Maybe someone will read this and actually give an offender a wallop on the side of the head.

I'd love to see it.



Friday, September 5, 2014

Sweet and Sour

     Back when we were camping in Colorado, the kids befriended two boys who were camping in the campsite next to us.  They taught our kids a new game called "Sweet and Sour".  The way it goes is simple: you wave at a passing car and if the occupants wave back, they're sweet.  If they don't wave back, they're sour.  I had mixed feelings about this game, since I usually go to considerable lengths to avoid any type of social interactions with strangers (and at times, even acquaintances.) My kids, thankfully, did not inherit that inclination from me and surprised me with their bravado. They had buckets of it.  They waved at travelers passing in the campground, they waved at people on the trails, they waved at cars on the highway in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. They were endlessly optimistic in their search for the "sweet", crowing with delight whenever someone waved back.

     In the weeks since we've gotten back from vacation, I think they've mostly forgotten the game.  But I haven't.  I've found myself spending the past few weeks going throughout my days mentally labeling my interactions with people as "sweet" or "sour": the man who held the door open for me at the bank- sweet. The checker at the grocery store- sour.  Roo, when I pick her up from Kindergarten- sweet.  My Facebook newsfeed- sour, sour, sour.  (Seriously, what was going on yesterday? I was mentally exhausted and cranky after reading through it.)

     Here's a silly insight: the more I paid attention to the sweet and sour in my life, the more I started to appreciate the sweet.  What's more, the sour affected me less.  If nothing else, I was motivated to be even more sweet in the face of sour. (I think that's actually a trick I learned back in my waitressing days, but I must have forgotten it since).

    Anyway, I'm not sure why I feel the need to relate all this.  I think I just want to say that it's easy to get sucked into the vortex of the sour, especially if your Facebook newsfeed has been as argumentative and depressing as mine has been.  I don't think we humans were ever really supposed to be subject to that many opinions and information at once.  And while I'm not saying that I'm going to stick my head in the sand, I am going to stay in the present and focus on what matters right now:
I'm going to keep my political opinions to myself.
I'm going to do my best to be kind and help people right here in my community.
I'm going to pray for the things that I have no control of.
I am going to stay sweet.

I hope you all stay sweet, too. 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Back to School Night

     Almost every year since I began this blog, I've written a back-to-school post.  I told you guys all about PG's disastrous first day of school drop-off, I related to you J's puking episode in Kindergarten Jesus, and I got all sappy-sentimental with this post from a few years ago.  This year, though, I got nothing.  The first few days were a cake walk.   The most controversial occurrences were the eye rolls I got from the older two when I forced them to stand still in front of their classrooms for a picture.  I had barely taken it before they waved and ran off towards the playground.
That's J's "You have exactly 2 seconds to take the picture." smile.
     As for Roo, parents stay with the Kindergartners on the first day.  I had thought that leaving her on the second day would be hard since every time the teacher mentioned it, I had to do that blinky-tilt-my-head-back thing to keep the tears on the inside of my eyeballs.  But then the second morning came, and together we hung her backpack on the play yard.  Then she gave me a kiss, ran off to play with her friends, and I was left standing there on the playground feeling...... really okay.  No lumps in my throat, no tears blurring my vision, no emotional flashbacks to her sweet babyhood.  I'm a tough nut.
     By the way, it helped that I was recovering from a rough morning. Thirty minutes prior, I had been shouting things like  "The train is leaving the station in 5 minutes, people! I suggest you find your shoes and get them ON your body!!!" Friends, there is nothing like morning madness to suck the sentimentality out of leaving your kids. Nothing.

     Anyway, all this to say that this year, there was no story to be had from the kids' first day of school.

     There is however, a story to be told from Back to School Night.

     Back to School Night nowadays is nothing like when our parents attended back in the day.  If your upbringing was like mine, Back to School Night was always scheduled a few weeks after school started. Your parents probably left you with a sitter and drove to your school, where they sat in your little desks and listened to your teacher talk and answer questions for an hour or so.  The agenda looked something like this:
                         6:00 Principal's Message
                         6:15-7:00 Teacher's Message in Classrooms

     That's it.  If there were two of you kids at the same school, your parents probably split up to each attend a classroom.  Then they went home. (Actually, my parents probably took advantage of the sitter and went out to dinner.)  The whole thing seems kind of calm and relaxing to me.

     Our Back to School Night is a much different affair. At my children's school, it's always scheduled before school starts.   There is no sitter.  Everybody goes to find out who their teacher is and visit their classroom.  The agenda looks like this:

                        4:30- Class lists posted (Translation: Fight the 900 other families for a spot in the parking lot and then muscle your way to the class lists to find your childrens' names and teachers. Also, stop to greet friends you haven't seen in a while.  Do this in a large crowd while keeping track of your multiple children and your spouse, who grows irritated with you every time you stop to chat. 
                         5:00- 5:45-  First Session with Teachers, Grades K,1, and 2 (Translation: Begin the "Filling Out of the Forms" while simultaneously listening to the teacher describe your child's day and their policies.  If you're an old timer like me, you tune out the teacher because you've already been through this twice so it's cool if you just focus on the "Filling Out of the Forms"- until you catch a snippet of the teacher saying something that sounds totally unfamiliar and you feel like a loser for being cocky. )
                         5:45-6:30- Activity Sign-Ups and T-Shirt Sales in the MPR (Translation: Go stand in a forever line to buy school T-shirts that your kids don't really need.  Get to the front of the line to discover that they ran out of the size and style that your child wants.   Argue with your children about whether or not they really need to join the Roadrunner Running Club which meets at an ungodly hour before school starts.  Continue to irritate your spouse by running into and chatting with friends.
                       6:30-7:15- Second Session with Teachers, Grades 3, 4, and 5. (Translation: Split up with your spouse.  Pray he takes good notes on the doings of child #2's teacher while you attend child #1's class.  Continue with the "Filling Out of the Forms".  Start to worry about your mind when you realize you're listing the wrong allergies for the wrong child on the wrong form.  Realize that half the parents in the room are shaking their heads, crossing things out, and muttering to themselves.  Feel better about yourself.  Give up on filling out forms and decide to finish it all up at home. 
                  
Overwhelming mess.....
Ba-BAM! Now it's 3 neatly organized and signed packets.  Moms are  awesome. 

    At 7:30 it's all over.  You take your tired and hungry kids to Rubio's for dinner, which is crowded with all the other families from school who are also taking all their tired and hungry kids to dinner.  Your spouse continues to be irritated with you for chatting it up, but you toss him a burrito and he's appeased.  The last two hours have been filled with nervousness, anxiety, information, excitement and chaos.  You go home and pour yourself a well-deserved glass of wine.

*****
     So you see.  Very different experience.  Is it just me, or do we complicate things a lot more now?  School is practically a job.  I even received homework already.
Dear Teacher, my goal is to not resent you for forcing me to set a goal. 

     This morning PG said to me "Mom, I just realized something sad.  When you were going to school, you had to get up early every day.  Then you had kids, and just because we're going to school, you STILL have to get up early every day."

     Well, yes.  And in between my high school graduation and the birth of my first child 13 years later, there was this thing that I had called a career, and before that was an experience known as college, and multiple other meaningless jobs along the way which required me to get up early.  But I didn't tell her any of that.  I'll go ahead and rack up the pity points and let her think that school is the be-all-end-all of my existence.  That's how it felt at the end of Back To School Night, anyway.


               

Friday, August 15, 2014

Dream Warrior

     It rained every day on our vacation.  Normally rain and camping aren't my favorite combination, but I didn't mind it so much on this past trip.  It rained mostly at night, and I was surprised to find that I love the sound of rain drops falling on a tent just as much as I love the sound of them hitting my bedroom window back at home.

     One night, after listening to a thunderstorm pass overhead, I was having trouble falling back asleep.  There I laid wide awake in my sleeping bag, when PG sat straight up.

     "I have NO idea how to do this.", she declared loudly.  Her voice had a touch of tween-ish attitude we've been experiencing lately, so my response to her was a bit curt:

     "Do what? What are you talking about?"

      "I don't know how to capture this tree." I relaxed a little and a smile spread across my face.  It's always fun for me to catch a loved one talking in their sleep.  I wanted to get as much out of this conversation as I possibly could.

      "Why do you need to capture the tree?" I asked her.  She mumbled something of which I could only hear part of, which is unfortunate, because judging from the bits I did catch- something about "the animals" and "courage"- it was likely a very entertaining answer.

     Now, I don't know what she was dreaming.  She didn't remember anything the next morning when I asked her about it.  She had just finished reading Tolkien's The Hobbit a few hours prior to her bedtime, so I imagine her dream was influenced by the fictional world of faeries and dwarves and Hobbit adventures that she had just left.  So it was in the spirit of those adventures, with her subconscious wide open to me, that I reached out to squeeze her hand and tell her, "Don't give up.  I know you'll find a way to take that tree."

     She nodded and then slowly lay her head back down upon her pillow.  I watched her for a moment and then rested my head too.  And before I closed my eyes, I wished that my daughter, that night in her dreams, would know victory.

 


Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Muses and Demons

     For the last week, I've been writing blog posts in my head.  I've been talking to you guys about so many things, most of them sad, because it seems that's mostly what the world is filled with lately.  But then, before I could get time with my laptop, some other tragedy or horror was announced, and whatever imagined prior conversations I was having became moot as new thoughts and conversations pushed the old ones aside.  I have such a jumble of thoughts to express right now.  So I'm turning off the news in an attempt to force any new atrocity to wait.  I'm putting in my earbuds.  I'm closing my bedroom door and hoping that the Muse shows up-the one that helps me funnel my thoughts onto this trail of words that are being forged by this blinking cursor.
     Muses are real.  Did you know that?  I can feel them.  I think everyone can if they pay close enough attention when they are doing something that they feel passionate about.  However, to be honest with you, I think it's the absence of a Muse that proves their existence to me more than anything else.  A friend once told me that she could tell from reading my posts that "writing comes easily" to me.  Easily, HA! When I can get into a "zone", when I feel the inspiration that allows me to express myself, when my "Muse"-if you will- shows up, then yes, it is easier, but it never feels easy.  It feels like labor, but in the end, I usually have something to show for it.  Sometimes I'm even proud of that thing.  It makes it worth it.  However, when the Muse doesn't show up, when I sit and stare at a screen, when minutes tick by with nothing accomplished, when structuring every sentence is torture- that feels more like a stillbirth.
    I think creative geniuses have lots of Muses, and I think they are good at accessing them.  They know what music, what mindset, what physical setting will call forth their creativity.  They hone these skills over time, but it's my opinion that they're born with their minds and spirits wired for it.  The door between the creative realm and reality swings easily for them.
    Yesterday, with the news of Robin Williams' passing, it occurred to me that the door that allows one's Muse to pass through admits more than just creative inspiration.  It also admits demons.  I don't know why, but doesn't it seem that the price for the amount of beauty and creativity one puts into the world is paid it's weight in the amount of demons one has to battle? How many artists, how many actors, how many writers and poets can we name that are notorious for not just their talent, but for the demons they've battled? It makes me wonder if demons and muses are cousins. Maybe twins. (Twins makes sense.  It goes with good and evil, yin and yang, the paradoxes that are entwined all over the mysteries and understandings of our world.)
      I know this is a silly fantasy, but often when I hear about someone passing by their own hand,  I wish that I had the power to time travel back and show myself to them like a Dicken's ghost.  I wished this yesterday.  I wished I could have shown Mr. Williams how loved he is.  I wished that I could have shown him the world without him in it, so he could've seen how much he's being missed. I wished I could have made him understand that he wasn't really alone, that it was only the demons talking extra loud.   But then I realize it may not have even mattered. Maybe knowing all that would not have been enough.  Maybe he was just tired- tired of battling the demons everyday.  Or, maybe he was just weary of living in this world.  I understand that.  I'm weary today too.  There's a war in Israel, a Christian genocide happening in Iraq, people are beheading children and spiking their heads for the sake of their own God, and we sit in our living rooms and view it all on YouTube.

God help us all, and I mean that.

But then, also today, I read Anne's Lamott's Facebook post in which she reminded us that laughter is just carbonated holiness.  I like to think about laughter that way.  And I think about all the carbonated holiness that Mr. Williams brought into the world.  I'm thankful for it, and I'm planning to drink it in whenever I watch his movies.  I'm going to throw my head back and let all that beautiful holiness roll out of me in the form of laughter, and I'm going to think his name into the Universe, and I'm going to thank his Muse, and I'll be glad for him that his Demons can't torture him any more.

Rest in peace, O captain, my captain.