Wednesday, November 10, 2004

You can't serve two masters 

I got a chance to take a business trip today, and turned it down. This is a first for me at Bloatmeal. Back when I was doing A/V at Doghouse Productions, I took a few road trips, but the furthest Bloatmeal has sent me was to the next town for a client meeting. Until today, that is. Today, our production manager asked me if I'd be willing to spend next week at one of our Chicago shops. He didn't give many details as to why, and I didn't ask. My thoughts consisted of "Cool! Free trip to the Windy City!" and "What's on my calendar?" The week was free, save for a wedding on the 20th. (Not mine, of course.) I ended up saying that I was interested, but 15 years of experience led me to add that I needed to double check with Noodles. I expected her to have misgivings about the trip--Noodles is usually reluctant to accept last minute changes--but I thought that maybe we could swing it. I called home and got the answering machine. I left a message and went back to work.

As I worked, I started to recall those two younger personages in the household. Ooops. Somebody needs to watch the kids on those days when Noodles works. Well, I figured that we might be able to swing something, though my expectations were lowering. Over an hour later, I got the return call. I reiterated the deal and Noodles replied that she wasn't crazy about the idea but would be willing to deal with it if I really wanted to go. A bit better response than I had been expecting. But then she mentioned how Poodlepums wailed in protest when she heard the message. Ah, my desire to go declined somewhat, though Poodlepums' wailing is hardly an uncommon experiences. Then she mentioned that Bunnah had the "mad/sad face" on. Bam. Kiss that trip goodbye. I can handle Noodles' reluctant approvals. I can talk myself into ignoring Poodlepums cries of dramatic anguish. But when Bunnah gets that mad/sad expression that will soon melt into tears, I am completely defenseless. So I immediately, without regret, told Noodles to forget about it. I wasn't going to go. The conversation then switched to church gossip. Later, I told the boss I wasn't available and he was cool with it. Back to normalcy.

I like to travel, but I gave up being a business-first spouse and parent a long time ago. I guess today I just had to be true to my calling. It would have been nice to have snagged some more Salerno Butter cookies, though.