Ben's favorite movies are Mary Poppins, Yellow Submarine, and Free to Be. Lately, Free to Be has topped the charts. I grew up listening to the album, but never saw the made-for-TV movie until Ben's Aunt Kathy got him a DVD of it in January. At first the 1974 ambiance is a little thick, but after a few viewings it develops a quirky, retro charm. Ben's favorite song is probably "It's All Right to Cry," as performed by Rosey Grier; he can sing not only the words, but the instrumental portions as well.
We watched much of it tonight, the second time in a 24 hour period. This is more movie-viewing than he usually gets, but he's sick, and we're real softies when he's sick.
Last night we hosted a seder for a couple of other families. I was so excited -- we spent much of the weekend planning and shopping. Our local grocery store ran out of matzah, so Neil made some Monday evening. (Yes, after sundown. We're not too finicky about the details.) Brisket, vegetarian gefilte "fish", and all the usual suspects were on the table. About half an hour after our guests arrived, Ben had a meltdown, and was completely inconsolable for the rest of the evening. We'd never seen this before, at least not since he was a really young and somewhat volatile baby. It was contagious, and the other kids at the table got progressively crankier as the evening wore on. Ben's friend Etta asked the Four Questions, we did a few quick plagues, and after that it was pretty much a race to get food into the kids and distract them before all hell broke loose. Not exactly the sedate celebration of cultural and family tradition that we'd hoped for. (And yes, a quarter cup of bleach will take even a monster Manischewitz stain out of a white tablecloth.)
We were starting to suspect what the problem was, and when we finally took Ben's temperature after everyone left, it was over 102. And over 103 this morning. Poor kid was just miserable. Of course, he picked the perfect time to get sick -- right during Advising Week, the busiest week of the semester. (This is the second year in a row that he's done this.) So Neil and I shuffled everything around today and managed to take turns staying at home with him today. His temperature was still topping 100 tonight, so I have a feeling that I'll be cancelling classes tomorrow. My students will be delighted.
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