Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year

7:45PM - Grace is in bed. We are to follow shortly.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Balsamic Blues

we went to our friends' place for a lovely Boxing day dinner where Grace discovered a new taste sensation: Balsamic Vinegar.

There was a small dish out as a dipping sauce for some asparagus & prosciutto. Grace stuck her finger in it, tasted. She now found something she liked more than Teddy Puffs. Her finger and that bowl became fast friends. We all laughed at "what a sophisticated palate Grace has." She dipped her finger well over 15-20 times.

Fast forward to leaving time. we were extremely clever as we had dressed Grace in her pajamas for the ride home so when she went to sleep in the car it would be so much easier when we got there. We also put the lovely new sweater Leslie gave her on for warmth for the walk to the car.

One step out of the house, Grace throws up everything in her stomach (which includes lunch, dinner, and a few balsamic soaked teddy puffs. First thing I notice is that she needs to learn to chew her food better).

Lesson for the evening: Give the girl a medal for not throwing up in the car.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Questions & answers

I saw this little quiz going around the internets (on blogs people actually read).

Four jobs you've had in your life: Little league umpire, shoestore stocker, Red Lobster Busboy, Substitute school teacher

Four Movies you could watch over & over: Chinatown, Local Hero, Diner, & It's a Wonderful Life

Four Places You've lived: Gainesville Florida, Auburn Alabama, London England, Brooklyn, New York

Four places you've been on vacation: Tanzania, New Zealand, The Scottish Highlands, & Lisbon

Four TV shows you love to Watch: The Daily Show, Curb Your Enthusiasm, I'm Alan Partridge, & Meet the Press

Four Websites you visit daily: (A Cleveland Indians website written by a very very smart fan), Eschaton, Talkingpointsmemo, & Hullabaloo

Four of your favorite foods: pizza, ice cream, Bobbi's Hummus, & Smokehouse almonds

Four places you'd rather be: New Zealand, Columbia County New York, Sydney Australia, & in any number of English country pubs

Four albums you can't live without: The Band (Brown Album), REM - Murmur, Randy Newman - Good Old Boys, & Big Star - Radio City (impossible to pick only one Springsteen so I decided to leave him off)

Thursday, December 22, 2005

I need to be more observant

Holy Fucking Shit!

I was getting my truck inspected & oiled today & was forced to watch Fox News for aout 45 minutes.


For a story on whether Clinton & Carter illegally spied on Americans,they brought in a columnist from the Washington TIMES. Then they they interviewed 2 folks who were insanely pro management for the NY Transit strike.

The sad fact is I was in the room with 4 other people who seemed t be lapping everything up on the tube. Freaky.

2 new words

I need to be more proactive.

Grace's 2 newest words are:

Kettle (the thing to boil water for tea)
Marmite (yeast spread that all English and NO American children eat)

Grace, can you say football or peanut butter?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

A Curious Phrase I Keep Hearing

Lately, whenever I am put on hold in advance of speaking with a real human, I am told:

"We are experiencing an unusually high call volume, please be patient."

Why is Taconic Telephone experiencing an unusually volume of calls that result is waits of over 20 minutes? Is it that so many people are giving the gift of residential phone service this Christmas?

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Sad but true Facts Dept.

Grace is now over 17 months old. Basically she has been alive for around 525 days.

Tonight is the first night that we have ever left her in the hands of a babysitter other than one of my sisters.

To put that in perspective, each sister babysat for one night when she was a tadpole.

We have to get out more. I must say, it was really nice seeing Sarah dressed up. She smelled nice too.

BTW, the babysitter was paid $10 per hour and Grace was asleep the whole time.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Shit Scary Story in today's NY Times

I haven't seen anybody else posting about this story but I read it on the way into work today. It's about a woman from Belgium who married a muslim and became radicalized to the point of becoming a suicide bomber in Iraq last month.

This is the future face of Islamic terrorism. European women (most Euro/American men don't tend to hook up with pre-radicalized Muslim women) who are in relationships with radicalized Muslim men, eventually become radicalized themselves to the point of suicide bombing. Women like this are so much easier to get into this country. It's not exactly easy to racially profile young western European women for this sort of thing.

Take a good look. This woman is the future of terrorism. In this country.

Click here to read the entire frightening story

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

As if you needed another reason not to shop at Walmart

Here is a heartwarming Christmas story that should easily convince you never to darken the door of Walmart again.

Click the link.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Really Great Webste

Here is a site I visit at least once a week. It's a posting of postcards that people write their secrets on. Some are horrifying, sad, pathetic, funny. Always interesting. Very much worth a look.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Random Ten

I saw this on another blog and figured I would give it a try. Here is a random ten songs that the Ipod spit out:

1. Sentimental favorite - Owsley
2. Dream Date - Neil Finn
3. Grieg- Lyric Pieces Opus 62
4. Still Aging - Soundtrack of Our Lives
5. Won't Make It Better - Del Amitri
6. Take the Long Way Home - Supertramp (Sarah asked for this on the Ipod)
7. Looking at The Sun - Matthew Sweet
8. A Living Prayer - Allison Krauss & Union Station
9. Hymn to Her - The Pretenders
10. San Antonio Girl - Lyle Lovett

Not bad. Country, Bluegrass, Rock & Roll, & Classical.

Monday, November 14, 2005

For What It's Worth

I was chatting with my upstate neighbors last weekend. They are both in their eighties, he has been a farmer all his life. In fact he fell out of a tree last week doing some trimming work.

I tell you this only to set the stage. These folks are about as reliable country conservatives as you could ever hope for. I would doubt that they have ever voted for a democrat. But I sat in their kitchen and listened to them both simply wail on our president. I didn't even bring the subject up (being a polite democrat). They touched on all the points you see in the press. Dishonesty, incompetence, etc.

When our president has lost these folks, there can be no doubt that he is in a deep deep, possibly unstoppable tailspin.

Foam the Runway.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Worse than Show Tunes

I recently got an XM satellite radio which can play in the car. I envisioned long car journeys with Sarah where we battled between Air America, BBC World Service & Major League baseball.

I forgot to account for the "Maaaaah" factor.

Now, when we all get in the car, Grace immediately points to the car stereo and continually announces the phrase that pays: Maaaah. Essentially it is a catchall which can mean either More, or I Want. However, she is not interested in satellite radio. Her interest is in the CD which has taken up permanent residence in the stereo: "Music Together." Two words that can make any parent shudder. Imagine 28 tunes, most of which we know from childhood, like" She'll be comin around the Mountain," & "Shoo Fly," sung with perfect political correctness by a rainbow of bland voiced drones and you begin to get the idea. And Grace simply must hear it for most of the journey, or we get repeated Maaah's followed by incessant crying.

But then when we get out of the car, she tries to give her dad 4 kisses before we make it up the stairs, and suddenly all is forgiven.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Grace Update

If you have followed along this summer with all of Grace's surgery escapades, you might recall that there would be a test to determine if the surgery in July was successful.

Well, today was that day & I'm happy to report that she no longer has urinary reflux and is now simply a healthy 16 month old little girl who has begun walking and waking up her parents at 5:30AM. So two out of three ain't bad, I guess.

Friday, October 28, 2005

No Wonder gas is $3 a gallon

Did you know that Exxon Mobil recorded the largest quarterly profit in the history of the world last quarter?

Remember, this figure is PROFIT, not revenues

Click here for the shocking number.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Hurricane news

Seems like Wilma is headed for not only my parent's home on the west coast (actually it is a double wide trailer at a fish camp) but she will take the same route home that they do and hit their house in North Palm Beach too. Luckily, they are hunkered down in Atlanta with my sister, watching the White Sox.

My old high school friend Chuck Gill is live blogging the hurricane. Here is the link.

Chuck is essentially the only one of my high school friends who stayed in South Florida, seeing that he was the only one of us who got a degree that was actually useable.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Not a good sign

I have an old cell phone I no longer use, and because Grace likes to play with things like cell phones & remote controls, I gave her the old one to play with.

Apparently Grace likes to hand Sarah the phone when I'm at work and say "dada". At first blush, that seems so sweet, but it clearly is how she is beginning to see her father: as a voice on the phone and not in the home.


Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Good Samaritan

Well, yesterday our car got seriously smacked from behind while it was parked. (this is the 2nd time this has happened since we have live in NY. I am starting to understand why we have such high insurance rates).

The driver of the truck assumed nobody saw him and he left the scene of the accident, figuring all was well.

Luckily, a good samaritan saw the whole thing and left me a note on my windshield with the number of the Ryder Truck that hit the car, and the time of the accident.

(almost) Instant karma gonna get you! I will see to that.

Friday, September 23, 2005

No News is Good News

Sorry about the dearth of posts lately (all 3 of you who regularly read this claptrap). Grace is acting all healthy which makes for some boring copy, but also for more restful sleep.

Combine that with the Cleveland Indians recent play, and I have become a happy father again!

When she starts vomiting or the Tribe loses to KC, I'll be sure to let you know.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Sick??? Naaah.

After inquiring about airfares to Lourdes, Grace took a turn for the better. But like Bruce it was 2 steps up and 1 step back (more accurately, 8 steps up for all of us, and 3 steps back for the woman who provides the breast milk).

Grace is essentially back to normal, her appetite fully recovered. However, she has begun waking up at least 4 times per night, each time with an insatiable thirst for the breast. Sarah dutifully rises each time, offers the nectar, which allows Grace to resume slumbering. Lather, rinse repeat.

She went to bed tonight at 7:30 and has yet to stir. With our luck, she'll sleep through the night, and awaken vomiting her guts out!

Friday, September 09, 2005

Hospitals - Can't live with 'em, Can't Live Without 'em

An update:

Battling medical professionals was the theme of yesterday. Our pediatrician felt that Grace was not ready to have the stent removed as she was still too compromised from the endless vomiting. The surgeon says that leaving the stent in could create its own problems, like the creation of kidney stones (Carter, I know you sympathize). The medical compromise is that Grace will have the stent removal procedure pending approval of the anasthesiologist, but will be admitted for 24 hours of observation and hydration.

Fast forward to this morning: Grace throws up as we are entering the hospital (ahh, harbingers) and again at 9AM. The medical professionals are actually relieved as this now means that there is NOTHING in her stomach to aspirate. I make a joke about "The Verdict" which falls on deaf ears.

Procedure goes well. Stent is removed and all foreign bodies are removed from her body! Grace appears to be doing fantastic. She is lively, laughing, making all the sounds that give one false hope.

2PM - Massive diahhrea. This actually is a good sign, as we now assume the virus has made its way from the stomach to the intestines. There is much rejoicing.
6PM - massive vomit.
7:15PM - Massive Vomit Part Deux (actually part 4, but I reset the clock after the surgery).

It is now 5 days since we entered the vomitorium, with no end in sight. If you are a parent (or someone who has entered middle age with your body beginning to break down) you immediately concoct all sorts of scenarios like Crohn's disease, Seliak's disease, and stomach cancer. It truly is moronic to think like that, but that is what you do.

Sarah is spending the night by Grace's side and is on strict orders to call me if she throws up (I left 3 hours ago and no phone call - perhaps she doesn't have cancer after all!).

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Like The Office, except there are dead people

According to Time magazine, Michael Brown's resume has some holes.

According to the news mag, he lists being the Assistant City Manager in Edmond OK in the '70's.

However, he was the assistant TO the City Manager.

If you have seen BBC's The Office, it is pathetic.

Meet the Assistant TO the Regional Manager.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Love = Fear

I need to go to bed, so this will be quick.

Sunday morning, Grace decided to begin vomiting. And she continued to vomit for essentially 3 days. Her last bout was only about 6 hours ago and she currently has a belly full of breast milk that Sarah & I are terrified that she will decide to bring up the wrong way. So far, so good, as she is still sleeping.

Things got so bad yesterday that, after already making a sick visit on Labor day to the doctor, she was dehydrated enough to bring to the hospital last night for re-hydration. We arrived at 10PM.

After sitting around for more than 2 hours, all of which was spent listening to a small boy watch the Shaquille O'Neal epic "Kazaam" at an elevated volume, here is what happened:

I know it looks kind of scary, but actually she handled it well, considering all of the white coats. IV in place, she and Sarah got a little rest:

They eventually let us go at 5:30AM. She promptly vomited in the hospital parking lot. Not a good sign.

Today has been a non stop rollercoaster of fear as she was a rags to riches to rags story. Brief periods of somewhat normal behavior, followed by vomiting I haven't seen since my college days. There is not much worse than seeing your child helpless to stem the attack. There is that moment of dread in her eyes, followed by resignation and quickly thereafter, lots of liquid all over one of us (usually Sarah). the only good thing about this is after driving the bus, she seems to recover immediately. But then the whole cycle repeats and we sit there helpless, assuming our child is dying and there is NOTHING we can do to help. I try to remind myself that humans have a long history, and my ancestors survived Black plague, so we must be a hearty lot.

But the nagging fear is almost too much. Loving someone so completely and differently than you ever have brings all kinds of emotions out. This week, it has been awesome and complete fear. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.

I will leave you with a final shot of Grace, taken during a sleepy, yet "riches" period. Hopefully she will stay like this until the morning.

And that's why we call her Grace. Goodnight.

A simple question

Apparently, the Republican Senate leader Bill Frist has decided that this is not the right week to be bringing the Repeal of the Inheritence Tax to the Senate floor for a vote. With all the death of poor people in Louisiana & Mississippi, it didn't seem like the right time.

My question is, if it doesn't seem like the right time now, then when is it ever the right time?


Thursday, September 01, 2005

The Bridge to Nowhere

Note: This post was edited for clarity on advice of gracious reader MG.

Please bear with me here and follow me through this post.

You may recall the recent Transportation Bill passed by Congress. There was lots of talk about "pork" projects, but none got more press than Alaska Rep. Don Young's "Bridge to Nowhere," a span as long as the Golden Gate & taller than the brooklyn Bridge. And it connects Gravina (pop. 50) to Ketchikan (pop. 8,000). And it is going to cost the US Taxpayer $221 million.

Also in the same bill is another bridge, this one costing $231 million that will connect Anchorage with Port Mackenzie, a rural area with exactly one resident (but it is near Knik, Pop. 22)

Now let us do a little math. The money per resident of Anchorage to build their bridge is $887.45 (I am being generous assuming every single resident will use the bridge equally). The residents of Ketchikan have a slightly better deal. the money per resident of their town is $28695.65.

Now we move to New Orleans:
According to published reports, the Army corps of engineers requested $78 million for drainage projects & $27 million for hurricane protection projects around Lake Ponchartrain. However, the Federal Government approved only $36.5 million & $5.7 million respectively.

Now, let is do the math. If both projects were fully funded, the money spent would have been $216.64 per resident. However, the actual approved per resident was only $87.06.

This is our Federal Government. We vote for them. We let them get away with this. $29,000 per person in Alaska for dubious bridges vs. $87 per resident of New Orleans for flood protection. I can think of nothing better that crystallizes to me what is wrong with our elected officials. People MUST be held accountable.

Here is the real bridge to nowhere.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

MSNBC - idiots

I must say that letting Rita Cosby host her new MSNBC show (dedicated entirely to the worst natural disaster in American History) live from Aruba certainly provides one with a total sense of irony.

I imagine there are more than a couple missing white girls in Louisiana & Mississippi tonight.


Monday, August 29, 2005

Florida= TOO HOT!

I remember now why I moved. I have no clue how people can take this weather all year.

Anyhoo, we arrived for a few days here so the family could all get some face time with Grace.

Unfortunately, by the time she was in her jammies, she had crapped through my first outfit (just after getting off the plane) and eventually threw up everything in her stomach on my second outfit (in hotel tonight). Long day, almost no napping, and the aforementioned heat, and I think it was just too much.

Hopefully tomorrow will prove to be a better day for our little hero.

Sunday, August 28, 2005


Oh My. This is the most perfect political cartoon I have sen n many many years. Enjoy.

Saturday, August 27, 2005


Grace has been on a daily dose of antibiotics of one form or another since then end of September, 2004. I don't write this to encourage your sympathy, although you are welcome to.

I write this only to say that she seems to have gotten wise to the whole thing and doesn't want to injest them anymore. The new one she is one (another mystery infection... lab results on Monday) clearly tastes like cat sick, as she immediately shakes her head "no" as soon as the spoon (or syringe, or squirter) nears her pie hole.

We end up having to lie her down, hold her hands, and use the syringe, but this is traumatic for both mother & child. Sarah was convinced tonight that Grace was going to hold this against us, but the genuinely lovely hug Grace gave her about 90 seconds later proved otherwise.

As for me, I'm not so worried about pissing her off, but I must wonder what essentially a year's worth of antibiotics is doing to her immune system. If you want details on what they do to her digestive system, email me. I won't post it here.

We have been dealing with this urinary tract "situation" for nearly a year now, and I am starting to wonder if we aren't creating another long term problem due to all of these antibotics.

And Now for Something Completely Different

On our neighborhood travels today we purchased Grace her first official pair of "real" shoes.


Yes that is right.

This is where parenting starts to get silly expensive.

Also, on the way home, Sarah went into a pet store to get some new food for our old as dirt cat, Frank. In his advancing years, Frank has become rather choosy in his dining, and because he is firendly to Grace, we have decided to indulge him. Anyway, she came out with a can of "California Roll". Clearly they aren't selling this cat food in Alabama.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Top Ten Atrocities of the 20th Century

I found this on line tonight.

10. Chinese Civil war 1945-49 (puts ours to shame) - Total dead: 2, 500,000
9. 2nd Indochina war 1960-75 (to inc. what we call Vietnam War) - Total Dead: 2,800,000
8. Korean war 1950-53 - Total Dead: 2,800,000
7. Congo Free State (I didn't even know about this) 1900-08 - Total dead: 3,000,000
6. China Warlord & Nationalist Era - 1917-37 - Total Dead: 4,000,000
5. Russian Civil War - 1918-21 - Total Dead: 8,800,000 (wow, a huge jump. Very ambitious)
4. WWI (inc. Armenian massacre) - 1914-18 - Total Dead: 15,000,000 (supposed to be the war to end all wars. They were wrong)
3. Stalin's regime - 1924-53 - Total dead: 20,000,000
2. China, Mao Zedong's regime - 1949-76 Total Dead: 40,000,000
1. WW2 - 1937/1939-45 (inc. Sino Japanese War & Holocaust) - Total dead: 55,000,000

Recent killings include Rwanda (#21 - 917,000), & Iran-Iraq War (# 18 - 1,100,000)

Apparently there was an influenza pandemic in 1918 on the heels of WW1 where a further 20-40 million died.

A Day in the Life of a Urinary Tract

Frustrating day with medical professionals.

1PM: We show up to NYU Tisch (after getting lost in that massive hospital - the worst elevators in all of health care) to procure a sonogram of Grace's kidney and bladder to show surgeon the stent in her that he will remove tomorrow. I had assumed that it was about a half an inch long. WRONG. It runs from the kidney, along the ureter, and through the bladder. It's a monster. Note to self: ask more questions. Grace is suffering from some kind of bug (100+ fever for over 24 hours - simply because she has surgery tomorow!) and is very irritible during the entire procedure, crying unconsolably.

3:30PM: we arrive at the pediatrician (after an idiotic subway ride) to get the pre-surgery okay. Doc notices some white "gunk" on her tonsils and is somewhat against the procedure tomorrow. She puts a urine bag on Grace to collect a specimen, and tells us to come back in 30 minutes or so. Grace cries most of the time. We leave, run a few errands, and I realize she has crapped herself.

4:30PM We go back, the docs declare the bag useless, they attach another one and we head out again for a break. Did I mention she cried the whole time?

5:30PM Grace is finally exhausted from all that emotion and falls fast asleep. We run a few more errands and head back to the doc's office. Luckily she is a one a day pooper so all is well. They get their specimen and it seems like there is no urine trouble. We call the surgeon who of course says that Grace must come in tomorrow and HE will decide if all is okay to perform the procedure to remove the stent. Grace cries for most of the time in the office.

Sarah & I agree this is one of those days that age us. We stop off at the liquor store for a nice bottle of wine.

We will awake at 4:45AM to have Sarah breastfeed Grace before going into the hospital. Just another day dealing with medical issues in our house. It sucks, but you just get used to it. It's simply what you do.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

A Side of Democratic politicians I'm ashamed to show

I found these quotes on line today and I must say I'm ashamed to be a Democrat. I never knew our politicians were this feckless. Sure, Bush is bad, but these quotes really are beyond the pale.

1. "You can support the troops but not the president." --Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL)

2. "Well, I just think it's a bad idea. What's going to happen is they're going to be over there for 10, 15, maybe 20 years." --Sen. Hillary Clinton (D - NY)

3. "Explain to the mothers and fathers of American servicemen that may come home in body bags why their son or daughter have to give up their life?" --Keith Olbermann - MSNBC Anchor

4. "[The] President . . . is once again releasing American military might on a foreign country with an ill-defined objective and no exit strategy. He has yet to tell the Congress how much this operation will cost. And he has not informed our nation's armed forces about how long they will be away from home. These strikes do not make for a sound foreign policy." --Rep. Barney Frank (D - Mass)

5. "American foreign policy is now one huge big mystery. Simply put, the administration is trying to lead the world with a feel-good foreign policy." --Gov. Howard Dean

6. "If we are going to commit American troops, we must be certain they have a clear mission, an achievable goal and an exit strategy." --Former President Bill Clinton

7. "I had doubts about the... campaign from the beginning . . I didn't think we had done enough in the diplomatic area." --Sen. Tom daschle (D - SD)

8. "I cannot support a failed foreign policy. History teaches us that it is often easier to make war than peace. This administration is just learning that lesson right now. The President began this mission with very vague objectives and lots of unanswered questions. A month later, these questions are still unanswered. There are no clarified rules of engagement. There is no timetable. There is no legitimate definition of victory. There is no contingency plan for mission creep. There is no clear funding program. There is no agenda to bolster our over-extended military. There is no explanation defining what vital national interests are at stake. There was no strategic plan for war when the President started this thing, and there still is no plan today" --Se. Harry Reid (D - Nev.)

9. "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is." --Former Vice President Al Gore.


Surprise! Here are the actual people who said those quotes about our involvement in Kosovo, an engagement where not one US soldier died.
1. Rep. Tom Delay
2. Former Rep. Joe Scarborough (now on MSNBC)
3. Sean Hannity
4. Sen. Rick Santorum
5. Tom Delay
6. Karen Hughes, speaking on behalf of George W. Bush
7. Sen. Trent Lott
8. Rep. Tom Delay
9. (then) Gov. George W. Bush

* All Quotes taken from

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Future Cover of the Palm Beach Post

I'm Starting to think "Fuck It!, I'm done with this blog shit!!"

Oh, boo hoo. Nobody seems to read my posts. Yeah, I know I need to put more time into them, but being a busy father is, well, busy.

So today I check the blog to see if anybody has commented on my recent posts, and lo and behold there is a comment on one!!!!! So exciting.

I click the comments section and it was... a Spam ad for a company currently trading a 3 cents a share.


Saturday, August 13, 2005

A few of her Favorite things

Just wanted to let people know that Sarah & I thank you all profusely for all of the ppresents you have given her since she was born lo these 13+ months ago. If you recognize these as presents you gave her, be proud, as these are her absolute favorites:

Electrical cords
Cat food bowl
Cat water bowl (only when full)
mother's purse
Cat litter box
bookshelf (only as a way to pull down books)
mother's sandals
Dad's computer bag
all kitchen cabinets
Dad's bicycle

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Welcome new readers

Nothing like sending out a note changing your email address to all your friends to get your blog views going up. So I guess I better post something.

In Grace news, we went on an extremely long wagon ride today (sorry, no photos yet). By the end of it, she was nodding off in the back just like my father in a La-z-boy. Truly a wonderful way to spend the day.

In political news, this country is a disaster. Bush refuses to go see the mother of the dead soldier. He's a fool. It would be so easy. All he has to do is go out there, offer her some lemonade, speak to her for 30 minutes with no microphones, and it would all blow over. But he's incapable of spending time with anybody in an unscripted environment for fear of looking like a moron.

Also, did you know OUR Dept. of Defense is organizing a "freedom march" to honor both victims of 9-11 and our soldiers. Bad enough tat the march ends with a rally and country music concert, but they are making people "sign up" to be allowed to participate. WTF???? What is "free" about having to give your name to the government to walk in a march? These folks get scarier by the minute. But somehow we just don't care.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Yet another update

Grace is doing fine, according to the surgeon. The incision is healing perfectly. Sorry, no photo of that. Here is a snap to prove that all is well.

I will add more content in the next day or so.

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Home again Home again...

All tubes removed and the ladies are sleeping in their own beds!!!!

Here is a shot of Grace taken Thursday night.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Father Knows Something

Another day visiting Grace. I'm sad to report that no parent came to visit the baby mentioned in the previous post, although we overheard the nurse on the phone with the baby's father this evening. A good sign (like a bunt single).

Today was officially bodily fluids day at New York Presbyterian Hospital. Grace's catheter seemed to be leaking when I was holding her so I was soaked with urine at midday. No worries.

Then tonight, she inexplicibly vomited all over her father's jeans. Again, no worries. One thing I have learned this past year is that bodily fluids are no big deal.

(I will make on every important exception. When we were living on 35th Street, after a night of serious wine drinking with the Deacasper/Lauritsens, I was banished to the couch, whereupon I managed to vomit the entire contents of my stomach, which was essentially a bottle + of RED wine. It was so bad we had to order new cushions. And I'm happy to report I'm still married).

Back to the issue at hand. Grace is recovering well and perhaps we will be out on Saturday.

One of the things I have learned this week is something that many people have told me: Your love for your child(ren) grows exponentially. You think you love them when they are born. Hah! That's nothing. Wait a year. I can't wait until she's 10 years old. The nice thing is that your capacity to love also includes your wife. To steal the Grinch analogy, your heart (actually its the brain, but so what) grows to accomodate everybody.

Strange how hospitalization makes one optimistic.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Surgery Update

Well, the mission was not scrubbed and Grace was carried into the operating theatre at 8:40 this morning. If you have ever watched your child succumb to the anasthetic in the mask, you know that it is guaranteed to induce instantaneous weeping.

After the weeping portion of our day was complete, we commenced with the sitting around with people whose loved ones are far more fucked up than ours portion. We met a couple from India whose 23 year old son was having his spleen removed (again I wonder what a spleen actually does. Can't be much if they are removing it). They talked of their sons and extended family who are all here becoming doctors, computer specialists, & engineers. Basically the schools mentioned were Stanford, MIT, RPI, Michigan, & Carnegie Mellon. They were proud parents, even considering the spleen situation.

Dr. Hanna sauntered in after 2 hours to report all had gone according to plan, where he sprung it on us that she will have to come back in 3-4 weeks to have a stent removed. Again I am stumped. WTF is a stent exactly? At least he says the surgery was a success.

We get sent to our room, which if you work in the movie business, you will understand reminds me of a honeywagon room. Essentially we are placed in a room with 4 beds. There was an hispanic baby and his mother in one quadrant watching Univision at 100 decibels from the moment we arrived until when I left at 9PM. I tried a little counterprogramming with the MacNeil Lehrer News Hour to no avail.

In the other bed was a baby of 1 1/2 months who was alone all day, occasionally letting out the most helpless cries. She was subjected to several x-rays from a mobile unit at one point and all the adults were ushered out of the room. The technician didn't seem to worry about the babies though. Hmmm. I am desperately hoping to see a parent by her side in the next 2 days.

Grace, meanwhile began the long slow recovery, with the aid of 1mg of morphine and the tender touch of her mother (dad assists with a random game of peek-a-boo). She is hooked up to a catheter and a urine collection bag, some other blood/goop collection thingy, and an IV hooked to her left hand. She and her mother are attempting to survive their first night (I was kicked out as they only allow one parent to stay). I am constantly surprised by just how loud a hospital actually is. between the constant din of televisions (which in the pediatric ward are burned in to either Disney & Nick Toons channels) and the beeps and blips of machinery, the chatter of nurses, the toilet right next to Grace's bed always flushing, did I mention the eff-ing television, the flourescent lights that never go out, not to mention the vinyl chair that allegedly folds down into a bed. It's wonder anybody ever gets well there.

Time for bed as I don't want to miss my wake up. It would be bad form to stroll in at 10AM.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Surgery Tomorrow?

Grace is scheduled to have her Uninary surgery tomorrow, but she has been running a mild fever off and on for the past 3 1/2 days, most likely because of her teething. It's certainly possible the surgery will have to be postponed because of this.

Stay tuned to this station for the next launch window, should it arise.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Quick quiz

Since we took over Iraq, approx. how many suicide bombings have there been in that country?

A. 129
B. 200
c. 237
D. 400

Answer: 400

Hey Dick Cheney, take your "last throes" and shove them up your pacemaker!

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Rocks n stuff

Grace ate her first rock today. It isn't actually fair to call it a rock, or even a stone, but more accurately a small piece of concrete which was in a small space where our non working fireplace is in our bedroom. There is a floor full of wonderful toys but she has to go for the mniscule crack in the corner of the fireplace to be interested in life. Luckily, I was paying a modicum of attention and she didn't swallow it, but boy was she pissed when I dug in her mouth to retrieve it. Much screaming, follwed by mum rushing in to the room to see if everything was ok. I am certain she was thinking "I'd never let her eat a rock." And she'd be right.

A short time later we went to the tot lot at the park and she killed her first centipede by ripping it in half. She made no attempts to eat it.

I am sorry that I ever wanted her to crawl.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Quiz Time

From a report on Yahoo:

Three weeks before London's bus and subway bombings, a Senate committee voted to slash spending on mass transit security in the United States, a decision sure to be reversed when Congress returns next week.

Quick, in what states are there mass transit systems?
New York
Washington DC
New Jersey

All of them, except for Georgia, voted for John Kerry in 2004.

Hey Senate, go fuck yourself.

Residing in the "Where are They Now" File

Why does nobody ever refer to the Devil's (aka Bermuda) Triangle any more?

When I was a kid, even a simple fishing trip in the ocean was a cause for concern.

Things were so much cooler back then.


Every pundit has been throwing around the phrase "stiff upper lip" with idiotic abandon. Well, if you want to know why they earned that title (aside from marrying one), then I suggest you read this book: London 1945.

The book's title is pretty accurate: it is about London during the last year of the war. Essentially, the city was living through a day like yesterday every single week. And this was after the Blitz. I began reading it a couple of months ago and work/baby fatigue has left it on the night stand. Time to get reading again.

I asked Sarah's aunt Audrey, who lived through WW2 in London, what it was like living through the Blitz. She was utterly matter of fact about it. You got through it because you had no choice. What else were you supposed to do? You had to live your life. Indeed.

I'd prefer the term "Tough Buggers." May I also refer you to Mayor "Red" Ken Livingstone's excellent statement yesterday.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Artificial Intelligence

According to Intelligent Design supporters, life on earth is too complicated to have simply "happened."

I'm no expert, but it seems to me that the folks peddling "intelligent design" seem to be missing one supremely important part of their argument. In their zeal to not look religious, they neglect to mention in their argumets that space aliens could have created life on earth. Sort of undercuts their argument IMHO.

My final thought on all this: Intelligent Design people misuse the word "Theory." Yes, evolution is a theory. But gravity is also a theory (except for Michael Jordan).

Time for bed. See previous post regarding Grace for uplift and cheer.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

One Year Ago Today...

at 11:15PM, Things changed (actually they officially changed in October of the previous year when I wanked in a cup and Sarah donated more eggs than any fundamentalist could ever be comfortable with, at NYU, doing our part, but in a nod to conformity, I will honor the date that is generally considered the benchmark).

This child has made a shambles of our brains. One minute I think we must simply raise her in Brooklyn with all the city has to offer, then I look at our friends' vegetable garden and simply know she belongs upstate. Don't get me started on moving to New Zealand! As long as we are all together then I guess it will turn out right.
Current score: Upstate 3, Brooklyn, 1, New Zealand, coming to bat.

Please note she is in a crawling position. God Help Us!!!!!!!!

Sunday, June 26, 2005

New Rove Talking Points

Watching Rumsfeld today on the news shows (he was on nearly all of them) today, he defended Rove by saying that Rove was speaking of when he used the term liberals. It's so obvious.

If that is the case, then I suppose I can equate Ann Coulter with "conservatives." Watch, it's fun:

Conservatives say we should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity.

Conservatives say their only regret with Timothy McVeigh is he did not go to the New York Times Building.

Conservatives say that we need to execute people like John Walker Lindh in order to physically intimidate liberals.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Hey Karl Rove...

Couple of quotes from Bush's #1 advisor:

"Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for war; liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers."
-- karl Rove - speaking in NY on June 22

"Let me just put this in fairly simple terms: Al Jazeera now broadcasts the words of Senator Durbin to the Mideast, certainly putting our troops in greater danger. No more needs to be said about the motives of liberals."
-- karl Rove - speaking in NY on June 22

Let me just put this in fairly simple terms: Karl, Go Fuck Yourself! You have the balls to say this in New York City? I hereby promise if I ever see you on the street, I will personally punch your lights out for saying that on New York soil. If you ever saw the movie Diner then you can now equate Rove with Willard Broxton.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Mortgage madness

I just read about a mortgage called an option ARM that gives you the option of 4 different payments a month.

1. Minimum payment (less than even interest only)
2. Interest only
3. the classic 30 year payment
4. the 15 year payment.

According to this article fromt he SF Chronicle, 50% of people choose option 1, which is essentially a payment that puts you in the hole deeper because you are paying less than the minimum. Assuming interest rates rise, then if you select option 1, then you are creating negative amortization. In the words of my Polish friend Alex, WHAT THE FUCK???

To my cynical peepers, the insane predatory credit card market is being extended to the mortgage market. Lenders are starting to prey on people who have no problem getting in way over their head.

I'm no Alan Greenspan (which isn't saying much these days), but there are going to be a shitload of foreclosed homes on the market in the next couple of years.

Here is the link to the article.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

This is the state of our government

From Today's NY Times:

Philip A. Cooney, the White House staff member who repeatedly revised government scientific reports on global warming, will go to work for ExxonMobil in the fall, the oil company said today.

Mr. Cooney resigned on Friday as chief of staff to President Bush's environmental policy council, two days after documents obtained by The New York Times showed that he had edited the reports in ways that cast doubt on the link between greenhouse-gas emissions and rising temperatures.

A former lawyer and lobbyist with the American Petroleum Institute, the main lobbying group for the oil industry, Mr. Cooney has no scientific training.

So, Mr. Cooney is found out to be revising documents regarding global warming that favor Big Oil, so he then resigns on a Friday. On Wednesday, it's revealed he has taken a job with the Biggest of Big Oil.

Holy fucking shit. There isn't even a need to hide this kind of crap any more. Because nobody cares.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Hell on Earth is...

Your poor daughter with a three day fever during a relentless heatwave.

Since Friday morning Grace had a fever that hovered between 100 & 103. There was a brief respite yesterday, long enough to go to a child's birthday party (if this is my life for the next 15 years, kill me now! The party itself wasn't bad, but with so many babies, it will become more unbearable than birthdays in the office).

She woke up this AM with a 101, but with the nectar of the gods, Motrin & Tylenol, she seems to have finally turned the corner (unless you ignore the diarrhea from the antibiotics).

I've never considered myself a worrier until now.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

It's true what they say...

About Jersey drivers. We had the occasion to head to the Garden State today for a child's birthday party & there were at least three reasonably close calls with knucklehead drivers.

It's called an "turning indicator" for a reason.

Clearly they have earned the highest auto insurance rates in the country.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Because I Can

This post is coming to you from a moving 15 passenger van. Cool, in a completely useless way

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Mr. Popularity

Here is a quote from Eric Alterman that puts our 43rd President's popularity in context:

George W. Bush’s approval rating is now a full twenty points lower than Bill Clinton’s was on the day he was impeached. Dear media, that means you gotta stop referring to him as a “popular president,” and no less important, stop treating him like one. If you want to be wimps about everything, fine, just don’t blame it on his ‘popularity.’ Blame it on yourselves.

I have nothing to add here.

A Little Inside Baseball

If you follow politics, then you have noticed the recent stories about Howard Dean and his "intemperate" comments about Republicans this week.

People should simply shut up. Dean will make comments that will occasionally rile up the right wing smear machine, and the idiot press will lap it up because that is the preconceived storyline about Dean. "HE'S A CRAZY HOTHED WHO SCREAMS AND IS UNHINGED. DIDN'T YOU SEE HIM IN IOWA!!!!??? LOOK AT HIM HE'S A CRAZY MAN!!"

I'll take a chairman who gets himself outside of DC over terry McAuliffe any day. Dean will say some shit, but so what, he's saying shit about Republicans. Stop worrying what they think. The more we piss them off the better. I don't see the press calling Frist on his crazy batshit comments or aligning his party with insane fundamentalists.

Friday, June 03, 2005

What needs to be said

Okay, I'll say it because nobody else will.
Ron Howard is a shitty director.

Want evidence? Okay:
The Missing
The Grinch
A Beautiful Mind (C'mon you know it's lousy)
Far & Away (extra shitty)
Cinderella Man (I admit I haven't seen it, but there is no way it is a good movie. Russell Crowe as a depression era boxer - it's impossible to be interesting)

He had a mini steak of non sucky movies with Apollo 13 & Ransom, but then went back to full suckiness with EdTV. I do like Splash & Cocoon.

I understand he is a great guy, but don't get me started on The Paper.

CORRECTION: I have decided that the adjective "shitty" is really the wrong word to describe Mr. Howard's work. I would like to substitute it for "boring-ass." I feel that is entirely more accurate.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

All work continues, no play in sight

The never ending work cycle continues. I am aware that essentially creating a new show will be a slow painful process, but 43 1/2 hours in 3 work days?? And we dropped a scene one day?!? I'm not getting any younger here.

And Mother Knows Everything

A word to all fathers:

Your wife knows more about your baby than you do. She knows the schedule, likes, dislikes, sleeping patterns & needs, ablution patterns, food interests etc, etc, etc ad nauseum. Listen to their wisdom every time and all will be well.

The only thing we know better is that babies LOVE, LOVE LOVE to be thrown up in the air!!!

Saturday, May 28, 2005

All Work and no Grace makes dad...

Too many hours spent making mediocre television this week. It would have been too many hours even if I was making "The Office."

I've got one more year left as an Assistant Director and I think that's all I can take. Dear readers, please note the time of this post. Stupid stupid business.

Note to self: Bookmark this post: Refer to it as necessary. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Grace Update + a smattering of life regrets

We met with the surgeon today. Looks like an operation in late July. We will get the date tomorrow. According to him, Grace (and her crazed, emotionally drained parents) will arrive on a Thursday, and leave on a Sunday, with a week of recovery (Grace will relax, mum & dad will drink heavily. Well, dad will.)

The operation will take about 2 hours and will essentially create a new valve to the bladder. Having dealt with this on a somewhat regular basis for the last 8 months, I am starting to wonder why I didn't go to medical school. I could cram those 8 months of urinary studies into about two weeks, so I figure I could study the whole human body in a few years. OH GOD, WHY DID I BOTHER TO GET A BROADCASTING DEGREE??? Because making mediocre, forgettable television & movies is such a great way to pass the time.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

I've got the Fever!

There is no doubt that the worst thing about being a parent is when your baby gets sick. As you all probably know, Grace suffers from urinary system troubles. She has already had one surgery and will need another sometime in the next couple of months (we'll know probably tomorrow when). The first symptom she ever had was a high fever at 11 weeks, so we are wary of fevers.

Well, yesterday, she spiked a little fever of about 100 in the late morning. Baby Tylenol (a product I will gladly advertise for free if they want - it's a miracle drug) did the trick, but around 6pm, she seemed especially hot, so I took her temp and it was at 102.7. The moment when you see this kind of fever gives me (and Sarah) a sick feeling in the pit of our stomachs.

A quick call to the doc and she recommended (you guessed it) Tylenol, followed by rest. The fact that she had no other symptoms led the doc to think it was a random virus. And thankfully, Grace was not acting listless. She seemed in relatively good spirits.

fast forward to this morning and she was right as rain. babies really are tough little buggers and I guess we have evolution (or an intelligent designer!) to thank. But when they are sick, you truly feel like things are completely out of your control and they are never going to get better and... which is ironic, as I consider myself a true optimist on most things. The love for a child can be a strange and frightening thing.

Monday, May 16, 2005


I ahve been in a Fantasy Football League for about 15 Years now. We have created a Plaque that goes to the winner each season. Our current champion, Ken Ornstein, is one of the producers on "Everybody Loves Raymond" and he managed to get it into the final episode of the show, which aired tonight. As you can see, the plaque commands the frame, even larger than Brad Garrett's head. I am a very proud member of the World League of Gator Football right now.

The Plaque in all its glory!!!

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Fun With Fraudulent Emails

I was sent an unusually good fake email supposedly from EBay today. The gist of it was this:

Dear eBay Member,We recently noticed one or more attempts to log in to your eBay account from a foreign IP address and we have reasons to believe that your account was used by a third party without your authorization. If you recently accessed your account while traveling, the unusual login attempts may have been initiated by you.

After contacting the real Ebay and telling them about it, I decided to the link and have some fun.
When I clicked it, it asked for LOTS of information. I guess they figure if you were dumb enough to click on the link you would give them the following information:

Ebay ID: GOfuckyourselfasshole
Ebay password: burninhell

Name: Whatami Ann Idiot
Address: 235 You People Suck lane, Fuckoffanddie, Kansas
Bank: PT Barnum Trust (I thought this was a nice touch)
PIN: nicetryfucko
Date of birth: I plugged in yesterdays date
Mothers maiden name: Interpol

It then asked for the following: MY account number, routing number, checking account number, PIN, birth date, , ebayaddress, ebay PIN, and finally my paypal PIN.

If there are people dumb enough to fall for this, then god help us.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

They're dumb as hell, and I can't take it anymore

If you know the NY media market, then with this nugget you will understand that this fleeing bride story is officially out of control.

I was flipping around the radio dial this morning and I heard a very strong opinion on the story by none other than Warner Wolf.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Bride to be flees...

Clearly, Jennifer Wilbanks should have taken a left when she hit Albuquerque.

Friday, April 29, 2005

Quality Time

Nothing like a couple of days off from work to confirm how stupid my work hurs are. I have spent more quality time with Grace (Sarah too) in the last 2 days than sine I can't remember.

Must plan my escape from my career!

Monday, April 25, 2005

See Previous Two Posts

Other maytag repairman, who is also dead.
Now I am starting to wonder, is this job like a commercial version of the curse of Sal Mineo?

See Previous Post

The late Gordon Jump (as mentioned in previous post).

Anybody Reading at all?

I realize I haven't been posting much lately but if you have ANY opinion at all about any posts, a comment is always appreciated. I'm starting to feel like The Maytag Repairman (my personal favorite, Gordon Jump).

Friday, April 22, 2005

Evil Democrats!!

This quote from Nancy Pelosi tells me the Democrats have gone too far in trying to get to Tom DeLay:

"The time has come that the American people know exactly what their Representatives are doing here in Washington. Are they feeding at the public trough, taking lobbyist-paid vacations, getting wined and dined by special interest groups? Or are they working hard to represent their constituents? The people, the American people, have a right to know...I say the best disinfectant is full disclosure, not isolation."

Oops. I'm so sorry. That quote is actually from Tom DeLay on November 16, 1995. Hat Tip Atrios.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

BBC - Home of real journalists

On the way home from work at an idiotic hour, I happened on aninterview on the BBC World Service with Tony Blair (the interviewer was Jeremy Paxman).

All I can say was HOLY SHIT!!! Paxman was asking rapid fire tough questions, he would interrupt Blair if he thought he was stonewalling, and was rather combativethroughout the entire interview. If Tim Russert ever tried to interview GW Bush like this, he would be pilloried in the press.

To his credit, Blair did his best to defend himself, albeit unsuccessfully. He sounded exponentially more intelligent and coherent than the leader of this country.

It seems the free press is alive and well... in the UK.

CLICK HERE to see the interview.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

A Serious Theological Question

Do you think that the guys who are in line to become the Pope have their "Pope Name" already picked out?? Or is it like the scene in Animal House where they are given their name (I call you Pope Pinto)?

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Lucky Dad!

Too cute not to post!

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Why I Suck, Part 338

Often I get home from work after Grace has gone to bed. Some, but not all, nights, I poke my head in very quietly to see her sleeping. I have never woken her up... until tonight.

For some reason, she was sleeping especially lightly and she opened her eyes when I popped in the room. Mayhem ensued. We ignored the wails for as long as we could. Then mother , AKA my wife (I'm quite certain quietly seething at me), went in to stop the flood of tears. Helpless onthe other side of the door, I silently promised to never to THAT again - sort of like Chef's mantra in Apocalypse Now - "Never leave the boat."
Did I mention that Sarah was already in bed and was about to turn out the light when I pulled my little stunt?

All told, Grace took about 45 minutes to finally settle down. Never open the door indeed.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Republican Congress hypocrisy alert!

Today the GOP House with a little help from some Democrats repealed the estate tax. Now, this won't automatically become law, as they will have to get the Senate on board.

The next time you hear a congressman going on about how Social Security is going to run out of money, ask him why he wanted to enact a tax cut that will HUGELY benefit .5% (that Point 5) of people in this country when that money could have gone toward helping make Social Security solvent for 90% of people who really need it in this country.

To quote the great Jack Warden in Used Cars, "These people are human scum."

Monday, April 11, 2005

Guiltiest. Pleasure. Ever.

It's been a busy week.

Tonight, on the way home from band practice, my drummer turned the station from my usual political talk radio (I was out of the car for 20 seconds at best - quick fingers he has) to the local classic rock station.

As I was dropping him off, "Night Moves" by Bob Seger came on. I am here to freely admit that I really like that song. I could do without the pseudo black girl backing vocals, but I chalk that up to the times. Musically that is one of the greatest riffs OF ALL TIME. G to F to C, then F to G. Simple, yet elegant.

Correction (thanks Keath):
"Points all her own, sittin way up high."

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Why Grace is Smart

Today Sarah brought Grace to my work (at my insistence).

Within 1 minute of being on set, she starting screaming uncontrollably. She instinctively knew this was no place to be.

I wish I could say she was a chip off the old block. She is, but off her mother's block!

Thursday, March 31, 2005

This country is going to the dogs Exhibit 3998

I found this link online to a 911 call from a drive thru in California (where else?) This must be heard to be believed. I cannot guarantee its authenticity but if it is, WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!

911 call that must be heard to be believed

Click on the link that says WMA file.. You won't be disappointed.

Friday, March 25, 2005

And Now For Something Completely Different

Sat through the American version of "The Office" tonight. I am a huge fan of the original and watching this one was frankly, strange. It was written by Ricky Gervais & Steven merchant and so it was eerily like the 1st episode of the British version. I will give subsequent episodes a chance to se how they diverge from the original. But seeing some of the same exact jokes and essentially the same exact performaces was a little disconcerting.

Not exactly a ringing endorsement, I know.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

I'm No Alarmist, But...

Earlier today, I started to write a post about how I was worried that something awful was going to happen in Florida with regards to Terri Schiavo. It semed alarmist and a bit shrill so I stopped myself.

Sorry to go on about this, but I have read 2 things tonight that I am truly speechless about.

#1: from Fox news, John Gibson says jeb Bush should give serious thought about storming the hospice where Terri Sciavo is.

#2: In the National Review, William Bennett (former Reagan/Bush cabinet member turned gambling addict) advises Jeb Bush to use whatever means necessary to reinstate the feeding tube. He has the fucking audacity to compare it to martin Luther King's civil disobedience.

These people are inciting violence, plain and simple. What is happening to this country?

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Cutest. Baby. Ever.

Can't help myself posting this photo!!

The polls are right in the Schiavo case

I spoke with my father this evening, who is a hard core partisan Republican, and he said to me that he is "siding with the Democrats on this one." I was shocked at first, but then again, he is in his late 60's now, and I'm certain he and my mother have had discussions about this kind of possibility happening to one of them, and they believe that the spouse has the final say. And they are right!

This is a common sense issue. What the hard core right wing Republicans in Congress did was think they had a politcal issue on their hands when they really had a common sense issue and they confused the two. If they lost my father on this issue, then they are in serious trouble.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Living (Blogging) Will

My wife already knows this, but judging by the US government these days, you can't be too careful. I am announcing to the world that if I find myself in a persistent vegetative state, or in a medical condition where i am terminal and unable to feed myself, I would like to die in dignity. Please do not let Tom Delay have ANY say in my health care decisions. And my current choice of political doctors is Howard Dean, and not Bill Frist.

I assume with the all powerfulness of Google, this will be cached and could be used in a court of law. In the meantime, I intend to make a proper living will and I advise you to do the same.

Marriage rights?

With the Terri Schiavo case, the GOP has proved that they don't give a rat's ass about the sanctity of marriage. A spouse's rights mean nothing if Republicans don't agree with them (and the added bonus of scoring points with the right to life crowd).

Another thought about this case is how, in the face of OVEREWHELMING medical evidence, some people on the right seem to think that this woman is going to "awaken" from her persistent vegetative state. Kind of reminds me of faith based science, which as we know, isn't science, it's faith.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Private School Auctions - The Haves and the Have Mores

Another sign that New York City is as full of assholes as any red state. Read it.

I always assumed the $20,000 a year it cost to send your kid to a NYC private school would cover the expenses of the place. But when the parents are really rich, why not soak them for a few more bucks, and let them look like big shots at the same time by bidding $40K for dinner prepared by Danny Meyer. At least one school got it right though:

And the proceeds from tonight's auction at St. Hilda's and St. Hugh's in Morningside Heights will all be donated tsunami victims in a village in India, the first time the school has ever donated its auction kitty.

UPDATE 10PM - I emailed the writer of this story who informed me that the auction purchases are tax deductible, depending on the item. So some Wall St. mucky muck gets a $30,000 tak deduction for buying an 8 year-old's quilt. Nice fucking world we live in.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

All You need to Know About the party in Power

Two nuggets from today's business in the Senate:

1. Senate votes to allow drilling in the Artic national Wildlife Refuge

2. Senate votes to not increase funding for Amtrak.

Certainly the 2nd story is a big giant F-you to all of the northeast US, who happened to vote for Kerry.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Grace - Reverse Hillbilly

Officially discovered Grace's first tooth this morning. Will try and get photographic proof soon.

Bobo and the even handed centrist guy schtick

Daivid Brooks, everybody's favorite Republican has a column up today on the failures by both parties on Social Security reform.

Here's one of his Republican criticisms:
In their efforts to create a risk-taking, dynamic society, they didn't appreciate how many people, including conservatives, value security and safety.

Okay, since when was the US not a dynamic risk takng country?? It's like the the woman who says "I loved him too much." This is a criticism?

Here's a criticism of the Democrats:
The Howard Dean hotheads declare that they hate the evil Republicans, making compromise seem like collaborating with Satan.

First things first. Here's a real cheap shot at the leader of the DNC. And while I would never equate a republican with Satan, making compromisise with George Bush's republican party has led to nothing but ruin. Ask Max Cleland. Ask stupid Joe Lieberman, who has been providing political cover to Bush for 4 years now.

Lastly, there is this gem:
Instead, many made demagogic speeches about Republican benefit cuts, as if it is possible to fix the system without benefit cuts.

Umm, Mr. Brooks, there is a way to solve the problem without benefit cuts. You simply refuse to see it. Raise the retirement age, raise the ceiling on the payroll tax are 2 of the easiest remedies. So shut your cake hole.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

THE FLU OF 2005! (Scary headline on tv News)

Has anybody had these symptoms in this order:

1. Sore throat (day & a half)
2. Chest nastiness with fever (2 days)
3. Runny nose (with some fever just to piss you off - just arrived)

Just asking. Sorry to those I infected.

Father Buys Nothing (or, How I stopped worrying and learned to miss my wife's birthday)

As you can see by the lack of posts, it's been a busy week in the real world. A 65 hour work week, complicated by 3 days of real flu symptoms, and Sarah's birthday began an hour ago, and all I've bought is some soap. PATHETIC.

But I have my ace in the hole. Stay tuned for details later.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

One Final Thought for Tonight

If you choose to ignore all news about Michael Jackson & Martha Stewart you could get an extra 45-50 minutes in your day. Just a thought.

With my 50 minutes, I write this blog.

Residing in the Where are They Now File:

Ashleigh Banfield. Anybody know where she is?

Grace and the Story of the Precious Bodily Fluids

On the fatherhood front, Grace today broke an 0-6 poop slump by hitting for the cycle today. All articles of clothing and her seat were soiled in the evacuation. Mother reports to be very proud of Grace's efforts today, but she seemed reticent to speak about the cleanup attempt. Father does feel some guilt about being at work and missing her big day.

UPDATE: Saturday 9AM: Staying with the baseball metaphor, Grace hit a double this morning and I was brought in from the bullpen to clean up. Glad to be of service, I say.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

David Brooks got me thinking...

Plenty of folks got on the David Brooks beatdown bandwagon today for his column today about couples and separate bank accounts.

Basically he was saying that he was ever so slightly troubled by couples who keep separate bank accounts. He feels that in a marriage, separate accounts could trigger self interest that could be unhealthy in a marriage. As usual, he was reaching a bit to make his point, but in this case I tend to agree with him. Granted, I am looking at it through the eyes of a guy who was married at the age of 26 with essentially nothing in the bank. Sharing half of nothing was easy. But I am a sentimental fool and I still take all those marriage cliches seriously. So on this day, I will not bash David Brooks.

Geography Question

What do Iran, China, Pakistan & Congo have in common?

They are now the only countries in the world that allow the execution of minors. Before today, The United States was also on the list.

Here are the details.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

FU Safire & Russert

I'm sitting here watching Meet the Press and they were talking about the run up to the Iraq War with William Safire, Maureen Dowd, & Thom Friedman, and Russert mentions the faulty intelligence. Safire says that is what they all believed to be true, and Russert says something to the effest of "Isn't that want you wanted to believe. You didn't want to know otherwise?" To which safire replies "Of course not," and they all share a hearty laugh. Laughing that they all wanted the war, no matter what the evidence said.

When I get a transcript I will post the actual quote.

Fuck them all.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Red State/Blue State

From what I can remember, before the 2000 election, the whole red state/blue state map was a fluid thing. Being a new father who gets no sleep, I am too tired to do actual research right now other than a link here, but I distinctly recall seeing an article that the colors changed from network to network, election to election. In one election the democrat states would be red, the GOP blue. The article linked mentions that before 1992 the dems were red, GOP blue.

My idea is that the networks should change the colors in the 2008 election. They could even try it for the 2006 midterm elections. The Democrats could become red again (although that would give the Republicans ammo for labelling them communists again. And the Repubs could become the bluebloods again).

The reason I suggest this is because of a post I read today on the internets best blog, by Digby. One of the things I took from the post was regarding the North/South divide from the civil war. It got me thinking about how this red/blue thing has helped propogate the divisiveness between the parties and states. It has allowed for the easy demonization of the other side. But if all of a sudden I lived in a Red State, then that demonization wouldn't take hold as easy. I'm actually exhausted right now and will work on a more coherent explanation in the near future, but what I am trying t0 get at is that by allowing the media to continue this lazy shorthand, we will, in a small way, continue to see those in the "red" states as others, and vice versa.

I loathe everything the Republican Party is doing to this country right now, but I am directing my anger at a party, not a collection of entire red states. If we change the colors in the next election, the wholesale demonization of entire states will be less attractive. It's only a symbol, but as we all know, symbols matter.

If you have any opinions on this, please feel free to add them.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Grace...Baby Genius

The smallest thing can get me excited these days.

This morning Grace was sitting on the bed and I asked her, "Grace, where is the fan?" She immediately looked to he ceiling at the ceiling fan. Then I asked her "Grace, where is the cat?" and she immediately looked at our cat Frank on the bed.

For a split second I felt like I was treating her like a trained monkey but that ended when I realized that I WAS COMMUNICATING WITH MY DAUGHTER!!!!

Tomorrow I move on to communicating with her about Born to Run & London Calling.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Curious about reaction to "Finding Neverland"

Just finished watching "Finding Neverland" with my wife and we were both moved by it. (gotta love those Academy Screening DVDs)

I am curious, as this is the first real tear-jerker we have seen since the birth of Grace, but is my (and her) blubbery reaction to it heightened because I am a new parent (if you haven't seen it, it features several children in very important roles) or was it simply a great movie? I am worried that I will now fall apart at any sentimental offering from Hollywood. My initial feeling is that it was simply a fine movie and I haven't become like that girl who used to work for me that lost it nearly every day.

The movie kind of reminded me of Shadowlands, an extremely underrated movie about CS Lewis starring Anthony Hopkins & Debra Winger.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Here is the ad I was referring to in the previous post

If they think this is going to work, then I have a quote for them:
"You're dumber than you think I think you are."

Let's sick Wilford Brimley on them

Apparently, the folks who brought you the Swift Boat Veterans have set their sights on the AARP.

According to today's NY Times, the President of USANext, (whose spokesman is Art Linkletter, and yes, I too thought he was either dead or stuck in one of those recliner beds in Scottsdale) speaking about the AARP, was quoted thusly:

"They are the boulder in the middle of the highway to personal savings accounts," said Charlie Jarvis, president of USA Next and former deputy under secretary of the interior in the Reagan and first Bush administrations. "We will be the dynamite that removes them."

I am by no means the first to make the connection, but this is the thanks they get for backing Bush's bloated Medicare drug prescription bill. This is furhter proof that these folks need to be opposed on EVERYTHING they propose.

And how do they plan on smearing the senior citizens of America? By claiming that the AARP doesn't support our troops, but does support gay marriage.

I'm not kidding. If I was smarter, I could figure out a way to post the ad of theirs, but it's an animated GIF file and I'm stupid. So CLICK HERE to see the ad. Truly mind-boggling.

Friday, February 18, 2005

You read it here first

The White House is readying their defense for when this Jeff Gannon Jim Guckert story explodes. It's buried in the last sentence of an article on Page A22 of today's NY Times:

"The credentialing is all handled at the staff assistant level," Mr. McClellan.

It will all be laid at the crotch of some low level staff person, sort of like Abu Ghraib.

Monday, February 14, 2005

2 names

Recent people in the news with more than one name:

Jeff Gannon=James D. Guckert

Mahmood Abbas= Abu Mazen

The challenge of parenting

There is a sobering article in today's New York Times about Christopher DiMeo, the young man accused in a string of jewelry store robbery/murders in the New York area. This passage was especially jarring:

Ms. Taylor and Christopher's father married, but their relationship was bitter and strained by drug and alcohol abuse, relatives said. Ms. Taylor taunted her husband by threatening to cheat on him while he committed petty thefts and started fights for sport, acquaintances said.

Scott DiMeo left when Christopher was a toddler, was arrested for armed robbery in Florida and saw little of his son. He drifted across the country and died in Iowa in 2002, said his mother, Ms. Cummings.

Ms. Taylor remarried, this time to a man who woke Christopher up at 4 a.m. to walk the family dogs, forced him to kill raccoons and sometimes beat him, said Barbara Jaklitsch, Ms. Taylor's mother.

Ms. Taylor continued using drugs and often lost track of her son. Ms. Cummings said she once visited to find Ms. Taylor strung out on drugs at home and 9-year-old Christopher fishing on a pier, alone.

I have no illusions about this kid and what he's done. He deserves to spend the rest of his life in jail. But that old saying that killers aren't born, they're made, seems sadly appropriate with regards to DiMeo.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

The End is Near

When you think it can't get any worse, it does.
If you ever wanted to actually eat trivia,
the wait is over.

Ever wonder where Christo got his inspiration for all those Gates?

Her hair matches Central Park!

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Why this blog is aptly titled

For the 6 of you who read this little corner of the internets, Grace had a little surgery this morning. A 4:45AM wake up and soon we were off to NY Cornell Hospital. I must say here that the facilities were much better than our recent stay at NYU Hospital, and they paid for our parking. Very swish indeed.

Grace's surgery was a quick one, a scope surgery to remove a small cyst at the jucture of her bladder and ureter (if you don't know where this is, try google, there are even pictures). We were on the road home by 10:30AM and all was well...

Until Grace woke up from her nap and spiked a fever of 101.5 and then threw up all over her mother (and I mean ALL OVER). Luckily, there is this wonder drug called "Infant Tylenol" and literally within 30 minutes of taking it she was right as rain.

Well, the fever is gone but Grace clearly does not like anasthesia. She has vomited 4 times now and finally is getting some much needed rest. Hopefully she will keep down some of that baby gatorade later.

Parenting: The True Love Rollercoaster.

Got through the night by, among other things, feeding Grace 2 oz. of diluted apple juice a half an oz at a time though a syringe (took about 90 minutes). She kept that down and slept until 5:30, when she woke up very hungry. Sarah breastfed her for quite a while and she hasn't thrown up, but the fever cam back for a time, but seems to have gone again (if the rectal thermometer is to be believed). She seems to be in some sort of constant discomfort, but hopefully that will eventually subside.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Super Nanny

Just watched the first segment of "Super Nanny", the show where an English nanny comes to the rescue of hapless Americans who can't raise their children properly.

How happy am I that I am married to a Brit!

Is it just me or..

Has the President not actually proposed anything yet?

What it seems like he is doing is floating a bunch of half baked ideas, then after seeing what sinks and what floats (very small rocks?), he'll go back to the drawing board, call in Frank Luntz for the right words to use and then finally come out with the official GOP Approved Social Security plan.

My opinion is that these assholes couldn't get a five year budget projection right. We went from a huge surplus to hundreds of billiions in deficit in something like two years. What makes you think that we can trust their projections for the US economy in the next 40 years?

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Thank God I'm Not Irish, or I'd be pissed off!

Fox just played "Sunday Bloody Sunday" as an intro. to the 2nd half of the Super Bowl. Nice going guys.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005


Left for work at 5:55AM. Grace still asleep.

Walked back through the door at 8PM on the dot. Grace was already in bed for the night.

A day without spending time with my child sucks. And I will never get it back.

Food for Thought

At work yesterday, someone showed me this new product, which could basicaly be described as "pudding in a tube," thereby eliminating the need for a spoon.

Have we become that lazy as a society that we can't even take the time to eat pudding properly? We're not astronauts.

And while I'm on the subject of pudding, any pudding that can be eaten a room temperature should be avoided at all costs.

Friday, January 28, 2005

Next Stop The Winter X Games

Maybe a little too much is being made of this photo of our VP at Auschwitz, but you have to admit he does look like he's about to get on his snowbaord.

Dude, there's a foot of powder!

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Liar Liar, Pants Aflame

Syndicated columnist Maggie Gallagher wrote favorably about President Bush's marriage initiative, but failed to disclose that she was paid $21,500 by the Department of Health and Human Services to promote the proposal, the Washington Post reports.

In her column, Gallgher agrees with the criticism: "I should have disclosed a government contract when I later wrote about the Bush marriage initiative. I would have, if I had remembered it."

OKAY, let's try an experiment. Has anybody ever given you $21,500 and you forgot about it?

I didn't think so.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Fucking Neaderthals

The New York Times has an article today about the evolution battle in a school district in Pennsylvania.

One of the reasons the creationist (AKA Intelligent Design) folks think they are on solid ground is their misuse of the word "theory" (as in evolutionary theory).

To use the old cliche, here is the official definition of the word "theory."

A set of statements or principles devised to explain a group of facts or phenomena, especially one that has been repeatedly tested or is widely accepted and can be used to make predictions about natural phenomena.

They seem to think that a theory is just some sort of loopy idea that can be easily refuted. However, the theory referred to in "Darwin's Theory of Evolution" is the one listed above.

Here's the money quote from the article:

Conservative Christians across the country say the re-election of President Bush has given them the momentum to achieve important local goals, including challenging the teaching of evolution

Monday, January 10, 2005

Another Reason why Leon Wieseltier is awesome

Here is a link to a recent piece in the New Republic by Leon Wieseltier.

"I understand that religion long ago learned how to argue its way around cosmic cruelty, but it is the absence of protest, the intellectual efficiency, that is so repugnant. Those who smugly intone that they have no explanation, that it is all a mystery, that the ways of the universe and its Creator exceed the capacities of the mind: they are over-ready for tragedy. They should more candidly admit that they choose not to reflect upon the spiritual implications of natural destruction, because they wish to protect what they believe. In the aftermath of such a disaster, religious people have more mental work to do than irreligious people, because they are the ones who teach the benevolent government of the world."

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

They can run...

One of, and possibly the best thing about the blogosphere, is the instant access to the truth of what politicians say. I have no access to a Nexis account, but others do, and they can unearth the darndest things. Politicians need to remember this.

Nexis is like a truth serum.

Just read the link.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Village Voice Film Critics... what assholes

I was reading the Village Voice Top Ten films for this year the other day, which, unfortunately has no relevence to me, as I have a 6 month old baby (all parents will understand this).

The Top Ten didn't bother me (especiall since I had seen so few of them), but what troubled me was the caegory for best Undistributed Film.

Are the being selfless promoters of unknown great cinema? Or are they fucking film snobs?

Amusing side note: The Brown Bunny(#30) scored higher than the Passion of the Christ (#45)