Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sofas

Maureen Kelley:
I need to Secret myself a leather sofa.
I really, really need a leather sofa

Darcy Wronkiewicz:
Why?

Darcy Wronkiewicz:
I feel like you have had 5 sofas since I've known you.
I don't think you're responsible enough for a leather sofa.
You are sofa-abusive.















You need that.

Maureen Kelley:
Let me fill you in on the history of my sofas

2004- purchase a very old, very heavy, very large floral print couch at the Unitarian Church of Whatever yard sale and chakra balancing event.

2005 - acquire two hunter green corduroy sofas second-hand from my mom's neighbor. Give 700-lb floral sofa to SVdeP 

2008-Bridget vomits chocolate milk on one green sofa. Given away for free to insane person with no sense of smell from CL. I laugh for years.

2008- I buy an extremely cheap microfiber couch which is very hard from a hole-in-the-wall furniture store in Ventura that was probably the front for a Russian child bride smuggling outfit

2010-Microfiber sofa, having never been liked, takes a sparkle nailpolish spill
Given away for free to drug addict on CL

2010-2011- last remaining green cord couch is our only sofa. Feathers coming out.

2011- my aunt's mom moves to retirement home. We acquire her old flame point sofa and love seat set AND a white formal couch that is 35 years old. 

2013-I attempt to launder the covers of the white cushions on the 30-year-old couch. Bad move: they fall apart.

Now I am using the flame point. Jack loves wiping his face on it. 

I NEED A LEATHER COUCH

Or at least one with washable cover

Darcy Wronkiewicz:
How much are you willing to spend on a sofa?

Maureen Kelley:
$800
So it has to be 2nd hand

Preferably a young adult in desperate need of heroin selling his parent's set

Darcy Wronkiewicz:
I feel like there should be fewer drug addicts in your furniture buying and selling life, not more.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Children and Art


Darce:
Sometimes I feel like, the more I clean my house, the more there is to clean!
Mo:
Well yeah 
When it's squalor you get used to it
Darce:
wouldn't it be better to not clean it and have less to clean?
Mo:
If you want to be a slob
Darce:
Well obviously I don't
Mo:
I mean it's good your standards have improved
Darce:
They are improving faster than I can keep up with them.
Mo:
Welp. Why is there so much mess?
Darce:
Well
I just spent a solid half hour going through Naomi's artwork and throwing out 90% of it
and then I found a huge pile of it she's been hiding under her bed!
so now I have to go through that, too
Mo:
Hiding under her bed?
Don't go through it
Just wad it up and out it goes
Darce:
yeah
I probably will just throw out that pile
I've already saved a few pieces from the last few months
I try to only save 1 piece per child per month
Mo:
So in ten years you will have 360 pieces of trash they won't want to take with them when they move out
Darce:
No.  I'll have a lovely portfolio of my children's work.
Mo:
"Work"
That they will throw into the garbage the second youdie
Darce:
That's a heartwarming thought.
Mo:
Well it's true!
Do you want paper you scribbled on when you were five?
Darce:
I would love to have a piece of art I did as a kid.
but my parents threw it all out
Mo:
Lord. My parents kept it all and it's currently a massive unwanted pile of silverfish food.
Darce:
The silverfish are grateful.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

School Daze



Darce:
Hey, Mo.
What do you think the ideal length of school day should be?

Mo:
4 hours

Darce:
Joseph's kindergarten was 3 1/2 and that was really good.

Mo:
I think four is fine as long as there is a 30 minute play period incorporated

Darce:
3 hours for instruction and 1/2 hour for breaks.
but we're on the same track

Mo:
Yes. I would sign up for a school that had that kind of day. In a heartbeat.

Darce:
For elementary school, this 7 1/2 hour day is bullshit.

Mo:
Totally.

Darce:
And then there's homework on top of it!

Mo:
Lame.

Darce:
There's a reason that homeschoolers can do it in 4 hours

Mo:
But you know parents would never go for it.

Darce:
Why not?

Mo:
Because they use school as free or cheap daycare.
And they've bought into the idea that more school= smarter kids

Darce:
That is a ridiculous idea
Parental involvement improves a child's education.
Isn't that pretty well established?

Mo:
Yes.
But some parents can't be involved. They HAVE to work!
Of course, I completely reject the idea that a two-income household is "necessary"
For all but a tiny percentage of people who married lame guys

Darce:
Well, let's say some percentage of families need two incomes.

Mo:
To continue to exist on the planet? Okay.

Darce:
If they have two jobs, maybe they can pay for a few more hours of child care per day
so that our kids can have a better education (meaning a shorter day).

Mo:
Here’s the thing:
Why does my kid have to be fucking exhausted at the end of the day?
Why do I have to limit my child's activities?

Darce:
Because schools serve the majority population, and the majority of people are doing whatever they can to provide the best they can for their children.

Mo:
Disagreee.
We do whatever we can to be available to our children.
And if that means living in a smaller house, that's how it is.

Darce:
You can disagree all you want, but that is absolutely how most people approach childrearing.
Maybe it's just a different approach to childrearing.
I mean - kids are super resilient, right?

Mo:
If by resilient you mean, "They can make the best of a bad situation" then yes.
But the kids at school know who the involved moms are.
At our school we have volunteer positions that need to be filled during the school day
And when we are looking for moms or dads to do these jobs the first question we ask is, "Who doesn't work?"

Darce:
Well, working people are unavailable from 8 to 5. They can't really do anything about that!

Mo:
Yes they can.

Darce:
How?

Mo:
They use their PTO or personal days or sick time.
Or they take unpaid time off for an hour or two once a month.

Darce:
But what if they can't afford to take time off?

Mo:
If they will starve to death or lose theirhome otherwise? Or if it means they have to buy store-brand peanut butter?
I don't care if other parents are selfish.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Drunk Babies

This is a draft. A work in progress. Please comment or send me a message with any points you find to be inaccurate, misleading, or simply unclear.

Mo and Darce think it's okay to drink in moderation and breastfeed your baby.
Seriously.



First, I (Darcy) want to make a few disclaimers.

1. Alcohol abuse is dangerous. I don't need to lecture you about how drinking too much too often or depending on alcohol can ruin your life. Ok, maybe I do need to, but I'll do it another day.

2. If you are falling down drunk on a regular basis, you do not have a breastfeeding problem. You have an alcohol problem.

3. Never sleep with your baby when you are drunk. I believe co-sleeping is a good and even necessary component to a healthy breastfeeding relationship, but if you're drunk you need to chill on the couch for a while. I'll let you research and assess how drunk you need to be to be concerned about this.

4. If you didn't drink before you had a baby, now is not really the time to start. What we're condoning here is a post-pregnancy return to a reasonable level of alcohol consumption such as the one you may have enjoyed before having your baby.

6. If you were a drunk before you had a baby, now is a good time to cut that shit out. What we're condoning here is a post-pregnancy return to a reasonable level of alcohol consumption.

Moms ask all of the time whether they can drink alcohol and still safely breastfeed their baby. I'm going to now tell you the answer that I almost always give:

If it's legally safe for you to drive your car, you can nurse your baby. Really. No problem. If you're too drunk to drive, you are probably not in a position to be caring for your baby. You don't have to "pump and dump" unless your breasts are uncomfortably full during this time.

I am _very_ comfortable with this recommendation. In reality, it is probably a bit on the conservative side. For those of you looking for a good general guideline, that is it. For those of you who want to know more. Read on, but please read carefully.

What I’m going to discuss here is how breastfeeding your baby your alcohol-infused milk might affect your baby, but there are other consequences to alcohol consumption during breastfeeding worth considering.  For example, when you have alcohol in your system, your milk ejection reflex is somewhat inhibited (like any other reflex).  This can make it harder for baby to get enough milk from the breast.  There are other effects of alcohol use on mother and baby that you should research as you decide how to handle this issue in your life.  I am only talking here about how much alcohol the baby ingests when you are drunk.

It's time to play a game I like to call, "Darcy Gets Mathy."

I want to start with a common-ish practice in the Jewish community. Circumcision. I know. I know. A lot of us are not comfortable with circumcision. I personally am not Jewish and am not comfortable with the practice, but I'm not here to discuss that. What I want to examine is the practice of giving the baby a couple of drops of Kosher wine at a bris. This is Kosher wine we're talking about, so we can assume a pretty low alcohol content. Table wine is generally lower than 14% alcohol by volume, so let's assume an alcohol content of about 8% here. Let's say that dropper-full of wine is about 1mL of wine. This would be about 1/5 a teaspoon of wine. If that wine is about 8% alcohol by volume, baby just consumed about .08 mL of alcohol. Henceforth .08mL of alcohol by volume will be referred to as a "baby-serving" of alcohol.

Is that ok? We'll discuss that later. For now let's see how much drunk-momma-breastmilk it would take for baby to get a "baby-serving" of alcohol. Breastmilk has the same alcohol content as your blood at any given moment. The breasts do not "store" alcohol (alcohol passes freely through cell membranes, so your blood alcohol level is the same as your milk alcohol level at any given time) Once you don't have alcohol in your blood, you do not have it in your breastmilk. Based on that information, I made a little table.


How drunk is mom?
Mom's BAC
How many mL of milk contains .08mL of alcohol?
How many ounces is that?
Relaxed, talktative, less inhibited
0.05
160.0
5.6
Disinhibited, impaired depth perception and peripheral vision, reasoning may be affected
0.08
100.0
3.5

0.1
80.0
2.8
Over-emotional, impaired reaction time, staggering, slurred speech
0.15
53.3
1.9

0.18
44.4
1.6
Drunken stupor, severe motor impairment, possible memory blackout
0.2
40.0
1.4

Table 1: How Much Breastmilk Contains .08mL of Alcohol by Volume?

So, what this says is that if mom's BAC is .08 (not legal to drive in my fair state) baby would have to ingest about 3.5 ounces of breastmilk to ingest a "baby-serving" (.08mL of alcohol) - the same amount in that dropper-full of Kosher wine. 3.5 ounces is a pretty good feed. Baby would have to ingest only an ounce and a half of mom's breastmilk to get that same amount of alcohol if she was falling down drunk. I would argue that if mom is falling down drunk she needs to be not taking care of her baby.

Let's go back to the other question. Is it really ok for baby to ingest about .08mL of alcohol? Really, I don't know. I mean really. I don't. But I do know some other stuff. For one thing. I backwards engineered the standard "if you drink this much your BAC is about this amount" chart we all know and love. Like the one here. We're basing this on a drink containing 15mL of alcohol by volume. This is the amount of alcohol in a 12 ounce can of Coor's Light, Maureen. Here is my version:

mL alcohol per "beverage"
Number Beverages
Mass in kg
4.5
40
45
55
64
73
82
91
100
109
15

Weight in lbs
10
90
100
120
140
160
180
200
220
240
1

0.44
0.05
0.04
0.04
0.03
0.03
0.02
0.02
0.02
0.02
2

0.89
0.10
0.09
0.07
0.06
0.05
0.05
0.04
0.04
0.04
3

1.33
0.15
0.13
0.11
0.09
0.08
0.07
0.07
0.06
0.06
4

1.78
0.20
0.18
0.15
0.13
0.11
0.10
0.09
0.08
0.07
5

2.22
0.25
0.22
0.18
0.16
0.14
0.12
0.11
0.10
0.09
6

2.67
0.30
0.27
0.22
0.19
0.16
0.15
0.13
0.12
0.11
7

3.11
0.35
0.31
0.25
0.22
0.19
0.17
0.15
0.14
0.13
8

3.56
0.40
0.36
0.29
0.25
0.22
0.20
0.18
0.16
0.15
9

4.00
0.45
0.40
0.33
0.28
0.25
0.22
0.20
0.18
0.17
10

4.44
0.50
0.44
0.36
0.31
0.27
0.24
0.22
0.20
0.18

 Table 2: How Much Alcohol Does It Take to Get Drunk?

Take a moment to compare to the original. You will immediately notice that I added a very small person to my chart. What can we learn here? If you give your baby a beer he may die. Good lesson, right?

I wanted to make a "baby BAC" chart.  The standard chart assumes some things about metabolism.  I am basically going to pretend that the alcohol in mom's milk is just dumped straight into the baby's bloodstream (and that no other fluids are absorbed in the meantime).  I am assuming that the baby has about 80mL of blood per kg of body mass.  Notice that I've also changed a "serving" of alcohol to be .08mL, so a "serving" here corresponds to the amount of mom's milk that would contain .08mL of alcohol by volume (see Table 1 to approximate that amount of milk).


mL alcohol per "beverage"
Number Beverages
Mass in kg
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
0.08

Weight in lbs
6.6
8.8
11
13.2
15.4
17.6
19.8
22
24.2
26.4
1

0.03
0.03
0.02
0.02
0.01
0.01
0.01
0.01
0.01
0.01
2

0.07
0.05
0.04
0.03
0.03
0.03
0.02
0.02
0.02
0.02
3

0.10
0.08
0.06
0.05
0.04
0.04
0.03
0.03
0.03
0.03
4

0.13
0.10
0.08
0.07
0.06
0.05
0.04
0.04
0.04
0.03
5

0.17
0.13
0.10
0.08
0.07
0.06
0.06
0.05
0.05
0.04
6

0.20
0.15
0.12
0.10
0.09
0.08
0.07
0.06
0.05
0.05
7

0.23
0.18
0.14
0.12
0.10
0.09
0.08
0.07
0.06
0.06
8

0.27
0.20
0.16
0.13
0.11
0.10
0.09
0.08
0.07
0.07
9

0.30
0.23
0.18
0.15
0.13
0.11
0.10
0.09
0.08
0.08
10

0.33
0.25
0.20
0.17
0.14
0.13
0.11
0.10
0.09
0.08


Table 3: Possible BAC of Baby


So, by my math, you 13 pound baby could ingest about .08*5mL (about .40 mL) of alcohol by volume and have a BAC of about .08 - the driving limit here in CA.  Let's say we want to keep our baby's BAC under .04.  Seems reasonable, right?  Well, I have no idea.  I can not overemphasize how little I know about how babies process alcohol, but a 7-ish pound baby who has a dropper-full of Kosher wine may have a BAC of about that, so it seems like a decent limit to set.

So, what does all of this information mean? Let's see. None of the cases below are necessarily reflective of anyone I know or their real life practices.

Case 1: Maureen has a few beers
Maureen weighs about 120 pounds (**Maureen wishes she weighed about 120 lbs.) It's Sunday afternoon and she is enjoying an afternoon at home with the family. She has 3 beers (**Maureen does not drink in the daytime!) According to Table 1, her blood alcohol content (BAC) may be as high as .11. In reality she probably had those beers over a couple of hours, so it's probably lower than that, but let's assume she slammed them in less than an hour and she's good and buzzed. Her 15 pound baby, Bridget, wants to nurse.  Consulting Table 3, I see that Bridget can have about 3 "baby-servings" of alcohol in her mom's milk before she hits our arbitrary .04 limit.  Table 1 tells me that if Maureen's BAC was .15 (which it is not, but we'll round up to be safe) Bridget could have 1.9 ounces of mom's milk to have one "baby-serving" of alcohol.  So Bridget can have 5.7 ounces of mom's milk before she hits her limit.
(***Maureen wants to know how many Coors Lights she can safely drink while nursing her 23-lb son.)

Case 2: Jennifer wants a margarita
Jen just had a baby. Her precious little 8 pounder is a few weeks old and nursing well. Mom wants to celebrate with a margarita. It will have 1 shot of Tequila. This is about 25mL of alcohol by volume, so we'd say it is about 2 servings. Jen weighs about 140 pounds so after this drink Table 2 says her BAC is about a .06.  An 8 lb baby can only have one "baby-serving" of alcohol to stay under our limit, so her baby can have a little more than 3.5 ounces of her milk.  That would be a decent feed for a newborn.

Case 3: Marcia wants to get slizzered
Marcia is a breastfeeding mom to a 20 pound six month old baby. Marcia weighs about 140 pounds. Her best friend is getting married and they want to go out for one last night of drunken fun. Marcia has about 10 servings of alcohol over the course of the evening. She has metabolized some of that alcohol by the time she comes home but she is still clearly drunk. Her speech is slurred, she feels ill, and she is crying to her husband about how she just "loves everyone in the world so so much." We can probably guess that her BAC is at least a .15, but it could even be a .2.  A 20 pound baby can have 3 "baby-servings" of alcohol to stay under our limit.  That would be about 4 ounces of Marcia's milk.  So, in this case, it might still be ok for baby to nurse. However, Marcia can not hold her baby safely and falls asleep on the couch for a few hours before she goes to bed. Hopefully dad had a bottle of mom's pumped milk on hand to feed baby while mom sobers up. In a couple of hours mom's BAC will be lower and it will be very safe for her to nurse. If baby is asleep she may want to pump in order to relieve the pressure in her breasts.