Post of the Week

Post of the Week

Published May 12, 2000 8:09AM (EDT)

The Most Expensive Meal You've Ever Had. $$$

House and Garden
Anne Threston - 10:13 am PDT - May 10, 2000 - #11 of 32

While it wasn't the most expensive meal I ever had, it was pretty spendy for a lunch. It was at the Hotel Olden, in Gstaad, I dined with my cousin, and we ate like queens.
Lobster biqsue that was absolute essense of lobster, concentrated, blended with the fabu local cream, quite possibly from a relative of one of the cows that chased us into town. Then we had venison, tiny little medallions napped with a wonderful brown sauce, served over spaetzel.
As soon as we finshed our venison, the waiter refilled our plates, which was a bit of an issue, since there was a lot of lunch left. However, the dog at the next table liked venison, and helped us clean our plates. (Another thing I like about Europe - the vastly civilized attitude towards pets)
There were sorbets of raspberry and lemon, with some sort of alcohol added, a salad of mixed greens, some cheese, and a wonderful apple tart for dessert.
All of this was washed down with a couple bottles of the local fruit of the grape, plus a fair amount of cognac. The bill was over $200 US, and I'll be damned if I remember a bit of the drive home.

Grown Up Tantrums, Part Two.

Private Life
Christian Claiborn - 04:56 pm PDT - May 11, 2000 - #9935 of 9942

To Anne,
I had a crush on you approximately three minutes after I met you. I was in the kitchen here at work, singing the "Mr. Belvedere" theme song at the top of my lungs while I rifled through the freezer looking for burritos. When I finished, you asked did I know "Growing Pains." Like, duh.
We were at dinner the first time and I asked you what your superpower would be. You said that you'd be able to melt those stickers that come on the top of new CD jewel cases with your fingers. I told you that I'd be able to heat a Hot Pocket to a uniform temperature. We made a pact that we'd only use our powers for good. We were there for three hours and the wait staff had stopped refilling our water glasses and I kept thinking that I had to remember as much of this as possible.
I sent you lots of email. I woke up at two and three in the morning some days, wanting to say something to you, and I'd write you long sleepy letters, most of which I was too chicken to send. I would keep remembering things about me that I wanted to tell you. Every time I sent you something I'd have a private conniption: had I said too much? Was I pushing too hard? Was I going to offend you? Was Igoing to turn you off? Every time the PC beeped I'd taste metal, hoping you'd written. You never wrote that much, but I memorized every word of it.
I wanted to be on your team. I used to look forward to meetings - to meetings, goddamn it - just because I knew you'd be there. I counted opportunities to make you laugh. I meticulously planned the spontaneous exchanges we might have during the day, only to forget all about them when the time came. I read books about things you liked: the 49ers, postmodern gender theory and Emily Dickinson, just so I could have something to say if the topic came up.
I don't have any right to feel betrayed. You were very clear from the beginning. You never gave an inch, never said a thing that I could misinterpret as interest in romance, and I am a master of the delusional hermeneutics of yearning. You never told me more than I needed to know. I wasn't led on.
And now I think it's finally sunk in. You don't want me to be your boyfriend. You're a good friend, a reliable coworker, a trusty confidante and that's all. You're not going to be won over by my wit or my presents or a letter of reference from my mom. You're not interested and I can't fix that.
And it's weird because I can see where my twin streaks of narcissism and low self-esteem intersected; It's not just that I like you but that I like being liked by you, that I find self-confidence and strength in your smile and in your laugh that I can't see the rest of the time. I caught a glimpse of a reflection in you and I fell in love with that as much as with you.
And now I miss you, and you're just ten feet away.

Born a Bastard

Social Issues
J. - 02:08 pm PDT - May 11, 2000 - #756 of 760

All I've got is my experience and an opinion based on that. My experience, in the larger scheme of things, has been a good one: .adopted as an infant .raised by two tremendous individuals I call mom and dad .shared my home with an adopted brother, three foster sisters, numerous exchange students and a wild assortment of non-human animals .searched for my biological mother at 15 .met her at 17 .searched for my biological father at 20, met him the same year .now in the process of meeting siblings (6)
Throughout, a few bits have served me well.
1. Respect, in the fullest sense. Respect for the privacy of others when requested. Respect for the feelings, emotions, uncertainties of others.
2. Understanding, as far as that is possible. It's hard for me to understand what my birthmother, adoptive mother, or anyone else for that matter, has dealt with. But I try.
3. Self knowledge and awareness. Perhaps the hardest thing is to examine one's own motivations, biases, expectations and to put them into perspective, considering 1 and 2.
4. Slowing down. When something seems to be moving too fast, take time, ask for some time. I'm natually good at this. Some say, complementarily, that the air around me is calm, others think I'm so mellow the turtles pass me by--and are frustrated by it. Regardless, it has served me well.
5. The law of the middle. Most relationships are neither extremely bad (stalkers, locos, etc.) nor extremely harmonious (peanut butter and jelly, etc.), rather they are in between with occasionally wide swings and some jiggles (which I live for).
6. Education. An educated adoptive parent who knows that what they are getting into IS different and WILL require some new tools and will LIKELY lead to some sort of reunion scenario down the road will be happier and help their child be happier. This is something that can be influenced a priori. Likewise, an adoptee who learn what the word means early and expands that definition with their intellectual development will be happier (me thinks).
7. The truth: base it all on the truth and things will mostly work out.
Searching for my biological family has been rewarding, rich, complicated, real, surprising, joyous, painful, confusing and ongoing. It was based in a desire to know more, dig deeper, and investigate myself, not in a need for fulfilment, a missing hole to fill, or a primal wound. I don't think that this drive is at all unique to adoptees, rather a universal theme present since the human mind came to be and reflected in our history, literature and art.
What I have found in my searching are a group of people with an array of similarities and differences, lives apart from mine, and fertile ground for new friendships and challenges.
Knowing the truth about who I am and where I came from far surpasses any expectations, dreams, fantasies, imaginings, or unrealistic ideas I may have had in my youth. And I wouldn't trade that for anything. I am deeply and sincerely thankful to those who have worked hard to give me that choice.
Saludos. J.

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