Thursday, January 18, 2007

Cell phone virgins, old lady cars, and AI madness

Kevin has his own cell phone now, which is almost as momentous as the Amish deciding to embrace computer technology. Actually, I read that some Amish use cell phones for business purposes, so my analogy isn't all that great. Anyway, when he came home and told me he bought one, I was dreading having to teach him to use yet another electronic gadget. He's slightly technologically challenged. Well, more than slightly, to be honest, but to my surprise, he read the instruction manual and set up his address book all by himself! He also figured out how to lengthen the screen display time; I'd pointed out that it went dark awfully fast but had no idea how to fix it. He's so thrilled with his phone that it's unbearably cute. He even called me from work last night and informed me he was standing out in the parking lot while on break. I didn't get it at first and said "OK, and . . . ?" and he said "Isn't that COOL??" Awww, I remember when I was a cell phone virgin, too.


I have sad news: My car died. Well, it still has life signs, but it needs clutch work to the tune of $700, which is way too much to spend on an ancient car. When I wasn't in the depths of pre-empty-nest depression this week, I've been quietly freaking out over the no-car situation. Money's tight right now, and I can't afford to take on a car payment. My parents, bless their hearts, came to the rescue. My mom had offered a few months ago to give us her car so that Daniel had an automatic for learning how to drive; my car's standard transmission was pretty intimidating to him. At the time, he said he wasn't ready to drive, but my mom brought it up again when I told her about my car's imminent demise. So my folks are driving up tomorrow to bring the car, and then Kevin and I will drive them home Saturday and come back Sunday. The car's in great shape because my dad has taken obsessive care of it, but I'm a little sad that I'll have to drive an old lady car. People, it's a taupe Honda Accord. Waaaaaaaa! I'll miss my sporty red Amigo.


Aaaaaaahhhhhhhh, the American Idol insanity has begun! I can't tell you how happy that makes me. The parade of delusional people during auditions bewilders and delights me. I don't watch many reality TV shows, but AI has captured my undying loyalty, I'm afraid. Prepare yourself for me talking about it regularly, OK?

Tuesday night, Minneapolis auditions: I can't remember most of the auditioners because I was so overwhelmed with horror by the woman who referred to herself as "American Idol's Number-One Fan." Oh, my God, the crazy bug-eyes on this one! I wanted to hide, yet I could NOT look away. After the judges turned her down--and justifiably, owing to her painfully bad singing--she was stunned with disbelief. She insisted she's been taking voice lessons for six years and has a degree in vocal performance. What the . . . ? What educational institution would give her a DEGREE? I almost feel sorry for her because she's been getting robbed right and left. No one with an iota of conscience would take her money and assure her she had talent. Scary, kids.

Wednesday night, Seattle auditions: Is Seattle really the universe's black hole of talent? Damn. Apparently, it's the capital city for insane people, too. Hard to believe such a collection of mentally ill folks could exist outside a psychiatric hospital. Honest to God, it was one bizarre character after another. I think my retinas have permanent scars from the horror of Darwin "Call Me Mischa For No Apparent Reason" Reedy's unfettered breasts. She and her mother were like characters from an SNL skit.

Even though the two men who became fast friends while waiting in line were clearly deluded about their vocal talent, there was something sweet about them. They were so genuinely supportive of each other and took their rejection with a lot more dignity than others did. Kenneth, the short guy who went first, is one of the oddest-looking people I've ever seen, however. If Peter Lorre and Peewee Herman had a love child (biologically improbable, but go with it), it would be little Kenneth.