Sunday, May 01, 2005

May Day

I love my house. Everything is blooming. It’s a burst of color. Roses, apples (yes, I have this strange type of apple tree that is making apples now) strawberries, so many flowers. It’s really paradise in the back yard.

Today Mulan and I are continuing to strip off the old map from the garage. I have a map of the world on my garage door. It’s like, huge. Ten feet wide, ten feet tall. And I put it up there a few years ago and now it’s all worn and horrible and falling off in strips. For a while I kept it that way purposefully because I felt the world WAS falling apart just like my map.

Anyway I got a new map (only $70!) and I hope I get it up there before May 15, when I’m having the Skeptic Society dinner here. And it’s a good day to work outside. It’s sunny and inviting and all California-y.

Then maybe we’ll take Arden on a walk around the block with Mulan on her bike. We go around three times. It’s fun. And I’m making soup. I have my three bowls on the counter with beans soaking. Garbanzo beans, kidney beans, navy beans. Tonight after the show I’ll make my soup when the beans are ready. My secret is not throwing out the water the beans soak in. That’s where all the flavor is. Lots of people throw that away. DON’T.

The show last night was really fun. A great audience. I feel I am in good voice and the whole experience is a pleasure, start to finish. I do not dread it, I’m not worried about anything. This doesn’t happen all that often, when everything comes together to make it easy, and it’s just…easy. Friends are coming to the show, some for the second time and it’s great to talk to them afterwards. Last night Jenny Bicks came with her boyfriend Adam and her parents. Jenny wrote on Sex & the City, where I was a consultant. We are very excited because another fellow writer – actually a producer on the show, Cindy Chupak is getting married and we are going to the wedding in New York in June. Very exciting.

Also, Melanie Hutsell came with her husband, Fred. Melanie was on Saturday Night Live with me for a while. I really like her, she’s very funny. I will never forget her audition for the show, she just killed. Really brave and hilarious. It was great to see her again. And then another friend, Colin, came with his wife, Nell. I really liked them a lot. Nell is a third generation atheist. I have met several people who are from staunch outspoken atheist families for generations. That is so cool. Imagine growing up without all that baggage – seeing the world with critical clear eyes from such a young age? We talked about how you can’t tell your kids what to think. This has been on my mind lately. Most people tell their kids: We believe in God. But I can’t say to Mulan “We don’t believe in God.” It’s such an individual choice. It doesn’t feel right at all. All I feel comfortable saying is “I don’t believe in God and when you are ready I’ll give you my side of the story.” (Imagine if Christians said, “I believe Jesus is the son of God, but you make up your own mind when you are old enough to weigh the facts.”)

This has come up because Mulan says the pledge of allegiance at her school every morning. I told her she didn’t have to say the “under God” part of it. She, of course, doesn’t know what I’m talking about. In fact, she doesn’t know what she’s even saying, she says the pledge phonetically, “I ledge alegince do da lag.” She said, “We have to say this in order to be nice.” It really irked me. I really got struck with the outrage that Michael Newdow experienced. Why are we inculcating our children like that?

Anyway, Mulan said, “Well who IS God?” And I said, “He’s this made up guy that people think lives in the sky and made the world.” And she said, “Well I believe in that.” And I said, “Well, it’s like Santa Claus.” And she said, “Santa Claus is real!” And I said, “Okay, there you go. God is just as real as Santa Claus.” And Mulan said, “Okay, he’s real then.” So, I figure, there you go. Maybe it’ll all be over by the time she’s seven and realizes there’s no Santa Claus.

Anyway, Colin and his wife, Nell, said they told their kids to say, “Under laws” instead of “under God.” HOW GREAT IS THAT? That’s just perfect. I love that so much.

Okay, Mulan has her bike helmet on and is ready to ride.

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