Which have nothing at all in common, in case you were wondering.
I realized that some of my newer readers might be pretty confused by the comments yesterday regarding a "pool boy" or "manny." I'll back the truck up and bring y'all on board. Four years ago Mr. D decided to hire one of his baseball players as summer help around here. Long story short, we live on 60 acres with 3 little boys and Mr. D would rather spend his weekends playing than working. In the Ultimate Trifecta of Win-Win-Win, each summer:
1. I get all the help I want from a helpful teenaged boy of whom I am supreme boss-lady and ruler and I don't get any back-talk or sass.
2. One lucky teenaged boy gets to work for me (and for a decent hourly wage) with perks and benefits that include regular lifeguard duty by the pool, all the Gatorade they can chug, homemade cookies and the most flexible scheduling arrangement evah.
3. Mr. D spends his weekends enjoying leisure time guilt-free and (most importantly) nag-free because the work is getting done.
Oh, and there are contractual stipulations about taking batting practice every day they work and blah-blah-blah.
So, four years ago we hired Lefty. He's a very pretty boy, soulful brown eyes, tall-dark-handsome, sideburned and laid back kind of kid. All my girlfriends swooned when they saw him. They referred to him as my "pool boy," except for Farmer who called him my "Manny." Lefty still comes around, by the way. He's helping me coach Mr. B's first machine-pitch game next month as Mr. D will be coaching the varsity team at an away game and Lefty will helpfully be back home from college by then. Good kid. Studying to be a physical therapist.
Last summer we hired Slugger. He's having a tough time at-bat these days. Very shy, quiet kid, but responsible and funny. He had a spleen injury last fall which sidelined him for football--a major bummer. I'd have happily hired him back, but Mr. D made up a rule about not hiring graduating seniors so this summer (drumroll)
we're hiring Ace (not his real name). Ace is a junior and a flat-out athlete. He's also very skinny, not quite the Mancake my girlfriends became accustomed to seeing shirtless working the pumpkin patch those first two summers. Sorry to disappoint you gals, but this kid looks more Warren P Cheswick and less Finn Hudson.
Last night my karate friend L and I went to see the very talented and accomplished Beth Kephart speak. The Fox Cities Book Festival is under way and I'm glad I went. L won the drawing for a free book by Beth Kephart, who graciously signed it for her. The talk was about passion and writing, and while I didn't learn anything too earth-shattering, I enjoyed it very much. Beth Kephart is a literary writer, I'm not familiar with her work but now I will check it out. She presented several excerpts of her books in a seamless fashion, I admired that aspect of her talk very much. Tomorrow morning I'm bringing my mother-in-law to see Lesley Kagen and tomorrow night we'll go see Jane Hamilton.
Meanwhile, my coughing has subsided somewhat. Pneumonia. Bah.