Looking for a Hole in the Space-Time Continuum

Summer has ended and already I’m tired.

Last night Stump woke up at 3 am and remained awake for two full hours, insisting Nurse? Nurse? Nurse? every moment I wasn’t nursing him. When I woke up at seven, he was still nursing, his hair all sweaty beneath my armpit. When I finally got up, Smoke decided to show his love for me by smacking me repeatedly on the butt while I packed his lunch. Meanwhile, Stump spent the next hour attempting to raid Smoke’s marker stash; he screamed in agony every time I forcibly removed a marker from his death grip. The moment before we left, I discovered red scribbles all over our white kitchen chairs. I have no idea how he managed this; he hadn’t left my sight for a moment.

One small thing that helped: on the way to work, as Stump was fussing the backseat, whining for another cookie and another cookie and another cookie (the daytime equivalent of Nurse, Nurse, Nurse) I drove by a man with a beard who was riding a motor scooter and wearing a long floral print dress that fluttered in the wind.

At this point, I’ve given up all hope of getting ahead, of managing the exploding messes in my house, of getting my teaching tasks preemptively in order for next week when the papers roll in. But I’d like to catch up on sleep, on reading and TV—these are small missions I began over the summer but haven’t completed. The other day I realized that all of this would be possible if only I could find a time warp somewhere. Ever since then I keep dreaming about it, as if it’s a distant but actual possibility like winning the lottery or landing a book deal.

A stellar-mass black hole in orbit with a companion star located about 6,000 light years from Earth.

Last week as Kellie watched the show Cosmos, I heard Neil DeGrasse Tyson explain that if you wandered into a black hole you would most likely die by spaghettification, your body stretching until it snapped. But if you were lucky and entered in just the right spot, in theory you might survive.

Would there be room for a bed in there? Could I bring a backpack with some toiletries,  some books and chocolate and beer?


  1. Oh, my! Spaghettification! That happened to me today.
    And I have to admit, I could never do what you do. Really. I am pure evil during the night. After age 2 months (except for preemies, who I can muster about 4 months of strength for) I turn into milk-medusa from about midnight to six am. Period. Even now. My milk, or face, would turn you to stone in the middle of the night.
    And I’m afraid that guy in the dress may have been the hole in the space-time continuum you were looking for. That kind of bizarr-o beauty does exist anywhere outside of a David Lynch movie and a black hole.
    Wishing you luck and sleep and time to gather your brain!

  2. See, I think that the only difference between you and me is that I am prone to bad decisions during the night. So even though we’ve tried to night wean, there’s always a moment at 2 am when I decide it’s rational to make an exception. And it’s never rational to make an exception unless you just don’t care at all about sleep. Milk-medusa would serve me better. And I promised myself I wouldn’t fall into this trap with kid #2.

  3. This post made me smile… the spaghettification sounds really painful but like you said, if you could drop in at just the right spot… what a feat. For me, I sometimes find that when I slow down time stretches itself out and I get done in an hour what would normally take three. That said, I find it challenging to slow down… although just writing this now is a great reminder to me that I should try it today. I imagine though that making time for everything regardless of how fast or slow one goes is more challenging when there are children involved.

  4. I love it when something unexpected and hilarious makes an appearance, even though it’s almost never possible to capture it on film. Still, I can imagine the scooter rider in my mind, and he’s glorious.

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