Today I've decided to give the people what they want: search results. Listed below are items that people have tried to find on this blog recently but failed. Some of them make me feel guilty: I should have a carbonara recipe on here by now, damn it! Some of them are nobody's business. And some are just strange and random. Hopefully this post will answer some of your nagging questions about me.
1. Tampax. Somebody keeps searching--many, many times!--for information about Tampax on this blog. I have no idea why. To the best of my knowledge, I have never mentioned tampons at all on Alizarine...wait. One time Jeff and I did blogs about packing for a trip to Italy, and I complained about sacrificing valuable carry-on real estate for a week's-worth of tampons. What a pain in the ass, am I right, ladies? But I'm not some kind of spokeswoman for Tampax. If you want to know about Tampax, please go here.
EDIT: One of my friends has suggested that the post this Tampax person is looking for is I Was Girl X, where I discussed sex education and periods. I don't think I mentioned Tampax, though. It was now-extinct Modess pads.
2. Panda Cupcakes. People come here 30 times a week to read about panda cupcakes, which we made a year and a half ago. I assume they find my recipe and go away happy and/or disturbed, so this is not a failed-search item. I included it here because it's my #1 traffic source from search engines, and it blows my mind that people care so much about making panda cupcakes.
3. Expectation. I don't know what this search means. Expectation about what? If you are the one who keeps typing "expectation" in my search box over there -->, please leave a comment and tell me what you want! In the meantime, please enjoy this Gustave Klimt painting called The Tree of Life. The very cool triangle woman on the left is called Expectation, so hopefully this will help you in your search.
4. Carbonara. I made it for lunch a couple of months ago following this recipe from Giada di Laurentiis, except I substituted chorizo for the usual bacon/pancetta (was desperate). It was pretty good but not blog-worthy. I do want to make a proper spaghetti carbonara for Jeff in the future, though, in order to re-create the classic scene from the movie Heartburn where Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep eat spaghetti carbonara in bed (at around :44 below).
5. Wife. Um, yeah, I'm a wife now.
6. What color are Bono's eyes? Blue. With tiny light blue flavor crystals.
And now, here's the one you've all been waiting for, if my search box is to be believed...
7. Infertile. Months ago, one of you searched for this. When you type something in my search box, the searched-for word becomes a semi-permanent part of the list of other words people typed in. The more a word is searched for, the larger it appears in relation to the other words. For example, "cake" is my most popular search right now, so it's a lot bigger than the rest of the words. Here's what I think happened with "infertile." It's a juicy, juicy word, isn't it, even juicier than "cake." Other readers saw "infertile" with the rest of the searched-for words, clicked on it, and made it bigger each time. That caused more people to notice it, and they clicked on it some more. It got to the point where over on the right side of my blog you'd see my face, a few links to recent posts, and followed by a huge, screaming
Which is depressing! I'm a lot of things, but is "infertile" really chief among them, you guys? I hope not! I was so annoyed by looking at this giant word every day that I blocked "infertile" from appearing in my list of popular searches. You could still search for it, but it wouldn't appear on the list anymore. But every week without fail since then, at least one of you searches for "infertile" and its good buddy "infertility." And the reason you couldn't find any stories about it was because I didn't want to write about it.
But your whining has been heard. HERE'S THE STORY.
Almost 20 years ago, Jeff had a vasectomy. Amy, his first wife, had health complications following the birth of their daughter Melissa, and in order to protect Amy from a potentially dangerous second pregnancy, Jeff had a vasectomy. They divorced when Melissa was in her early teens, Jeff married Nicole (who had three children of her own), she sadly died from cancer, and eventually Jeff married me.
I was almost 39 when I met Jeff, and I wanted to have a baby. Tick tock tick tock, went my uterus. After our wonderful first date, I was floating on air and beginning to imagine our bookish, brown-eyed, lushy-eyebrowed future child. Twenty-four hours later, Jeff called me and told me the vasectomy news, which he said was difficult for him to deliver, but he was serious about me and wanted me to know before things went any further. I thanked him for telling me something that would've been a dealbreaker to so many women my age.
After I hung up the phone, I cried on the couch for about an hour. I called two ex-boyfriends, and they calmed me down, especially Jeff's predecessor (and unlikely Jeff enthusiast) James. He said this about a woman he knew in a similar situation: "She just went ahead and had a genius baby." That is, she browsed through anonymous genius sperm donors, picked one, and nine months later: genius baby. That became a sort of Plan B mantra for me over the following months: "I can always have a genius baby." It would be just that easy.
IF Jeff and I were even going to work out, that is! I had about a week (the days surrounding Christmas) to think about how I felt before our second date. I kept coming back to the fact that we seemed to click in a way that felt absolutely right to me. I had spent years searching for this man. Even then, I knew he was The One.
We quickly fell in love. We quickly got engaged. We quickly got married. Marrying Jeff was the best decision I have ever made. It wasn't even much of a decision. It was utterly obvious, even with the vasectomy problem. Every once in a while during the first year that I knew Jeff, I would mourn the fact that I couldn't have his child. As our love grew, I decided that I didn't want to have a random genius child. I wanted Jeff's child, no exceptions. I dug deep and also realized that I didn't want to adopt, either. Right or wrong (and I know several adoptive mothers who disapprove of my decision, so join the club), I wanted Jeff's baby or no baby. I chose my husband over a child, basically after one date, and I have no regrets.
Sometimes I find myself reminising about The Woman I Could Have Been (watch this later; it's awesome).
That woman would not have been able to quit her job and devote all of her time to painting. That woman would not paint at all--at least not the kinds of pictures I feel the need to produce. That woman would spend her newlywed years stressing out over hormone injections, sitting in hospital waiting rooms, and obsessing over a theoretical being who is not Jeff. That woman's body would never be the same and her life would be turned upside down for good, and so would the life of the man she loves.
I didn't want to be that woman.
Also, what about the very real possibility that our dream baby might turn out to be an asshole? Or even worse, two assholes?
I love our life. Honestly, when we walk hand-in-hand beside the baseball diamond a block away, all I can think is, "I am so glad I don't have to sit with these parents watching those kids play ball." I love how quiet our house is. I love being able to read anytime I please. I love cooking whatever Jeff and I want and not having to cater to somebody's oddball allergy or childish preference. I love going to the movies and traveling with Jeff. I love painting all day and not having to teach everybody else's children how to do it anymore. If loving these things makes me a bad, selfish person, I guess I'm a bad, selfish person. But I am also a blissfully happy, bad, selfish person. And it's my choice.
So there's your information about infertility.
8. "my cookies crust is burnt but not baked entirely." [sic] Maybe you should turn your oven down to something more like 350 when you bake them next time.