Saturday, March 29, 2008

Breakfast strands

Em and I went to breakfast at Mimi's this morning so I could nurture my brain back to life after a night of scotch and cigars with the boys. (possibly the last opportunity of its kind for a few months) As the spicy Bloody Mary went about its assignment, I was considering DNA.

Our son will be thrust into the human race at any moment, and his genetic make-up was on my mind. An odd possibility occurred to me - what if the trillions of strands of DNA each of our cells contains were more than just a genetic roadmap for our bodies, but also an encoded "plan?" It's a compelling concept, the thought that DNA isn't just who we are, but what we'll do. More than just our predispositions, but also our accomplishments.

I'll bet someday we will discover that DNA is even more important than we know, and that a lot of the "junk" information in the strands actually means something. Perhaps it's a map to the location of our alien makers, or a good recipe for Ratatouille.

There is a movie plot there, somewhere. Now all that is left is to flesh it out, write a screenplay, do a storyboard, pitch it to a studio, hire actors, film it, produce it, market the film and get it into the theaters.

Or... just let it die here in my lonely little corner of the worldwide web.

I need to lay off the scotch.

Thursday, March 27, 2008


Another milestone reached this week, as we lost our 4,000th soldier in Iraq.

Time for a plan to get our men and women home.


In a far flung area of the universe, a star exploded with such force, you could see it with the naked eye. We witnessed the explosion last Friday (3.21.08) but it actually happened 7.5 billion years ago... when the Earth didn't even exist.

Under normal circumstances, the most distant object (a spiral galaxy called M33) that can be seen with the naked eye is about a thousand times closer - 2.9 million light years away. To be able to see such an event without a telescope is just amazing.

Oddly enough, it occurred at close to the same moment (at least in celestial terms) science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke (2001: A Space Odyssey) died.

Clarke was a colorful guy - my favorite quote of his was about extraterrestrial life: “Two possibilities exist: either we are alone in the universe or we are not. Both are equally terrifying.”

I only hope that, as his gamma ray burst occurred and he passed into the great unknown, Hal remembered to open the pod bay door...

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Back in the day

"Woem 2 you old friend... Greetings from Kermit."

The subject line of the email left no doubt in my mind who was writing. An old buddy from high school was Googling his own name (haven't we all) and it pulled up a blog entry I wrote a few years ago, so he emailed to catch up a little. We haven't talked in twenty years. The internet (and specifically the free access that blogging provides) is so freaking cool!

Ironically, I had Googled this buddy a few times through the years and came up with nothing. That he found me in reverse fashion is nothing short of miraculous, I'd say.

A nickname I developed in high school was Woem. It's meow backwards, a reference to my last name, Morris - which was the famous Nine Lives cat. We must have done a million 'ludes to get to Woem.

Quick "Kermit" story. Clintoris, Kermit and I went camping one weekend at somebody's cabin out in the woods. Most of the night and morning were spent imbibing various illicit substances and by the time we had packed up to go home, we had developed a fairly profound case of insobriety.

At the time, I was driving a pretty sweet 1965 Dodge Coronet with a .318 8-cyclinder. On the twenty mile trip back, buzzing like a saw from the Coors, Kermit decided to reach over and shove the shifter into park. Trouble was, I was driving 40 at the time.

Meanwhile, we had gotten the engine really wet and one of the cylinders had stopped firing... so by the time I dropped the guys off, I had only 2 forward gears and 7 cyclinders to get me home.

The next Monday I bought my '73 Gran Torino. That helped me get over being pissed at Kermit.

He and I also used to share a flask of Southern Comfort during band class occasionally. We never got caught, and I have no idea how.

Sometimes I miss being a kid and living in the country. Things were simple - no worries at all. That's only an illusion, of course... but still.


We've settled on a name for our son. I'll let you know what it is as soon as he's born. We're only a few days away...


I had to replace my good camera (it died for some reason) this week, and ended up with a really sweet Canon SLR. It's the EOS 40D, and I'm loving it.

We'll save a fortune on photographers for Sparky alone. All I need is a backdrop, some lights and ... um, what else was it again? Oh yeah, photography skills.


We're getting ready to pour a patio behind the villa and build some stairs down to it from the deck. We want to open up the backyard for Sparky to play in and for entertaining. I have my eye on the sweetest freaking grill you've ever seen. If you're a guy, get a drool rag because I'm posting a picture. They've run me out of Home Depot three times for loitering nearby:

There are freaking spotlights on that hood that shine down on your sizzling steaks. Sweet-ass sweet!

So my point to Em is, Father's Day is coming up, right? My birthday too. You can combine the two and I won't even be pissed.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Here's to... (a toast of a post)

Here's to guilt. I haven't had time to post like I used to - or maybe I just haven't had much to say for the past couple of months.

Eh, who am I kidding. I've had plenty to say, it's just that most of it pertains to a new baby, and GOD knows you don't want to read a constant stream of infant-oriented blather.

Sometimes, though, I DO have an occasional thought that doesn't deal directly with a baby - or the fact that I'm 43 and will be 60 when he graduates - or that barring medical miracles, I will spend my retirement money on tuition and die at my desk.

A few of those thoughts are listed here, now.


Here's to birthdays. My good friend, and "guy-who-turned-me-on-to-blogging-even-though-he-didn't-know-it-at-the-time," Steve Mays' odometer rolled over this weekend. He turned 60 and doesn't have a child graduating this year.

By the way, bookmark Steve's blog. I've never gone there and been disappointed... unless he skipped writing something for a day or two.


Here's to you. My blog's odometer rolled over too - registering its 200,000th hit this week. Thanks for continuing to visit, despite the irregular posting. I am about to address that issue with a series of travel stories from my frequent-flyer period of the 90's.


Here's to crazy midnight alcohol-induced ideas. My friend Mike and I are developing a podcast concept. I'll keep you informed about its progress. Oddly, we only discuss it when we're six or seven beers into a twelve-pack, and it always seems like a great idea at the time. Thinking about it now, with only coffee to drink - eh, not so much.

The concept is basically to record some of the conversations and stories Mike and I tell when we're sitting around the kitchen table. It would be easy to pull off, since that's what we do best. The only drawback that I can think of is that nobody would want to listen. Minor detail...


Here's to being alike. Last night Em and I stayed home, ate leftovers and watched television. As I was walking down the stairs with a bowl of the best damned chili I've ever made, I told her that the greatest part of our relationship is... if we'd never met, I'd be doing the exact same thing as I'm doing now. We're pretty perfect for each other.

Then we turned on the History Channel and watched a documentary, pausing it every 30 seconds to critique or dispute the tiniest detail. Yep, that's how we roll.


PS - So um, there are new maternity photos of Em on the baby's site, if anyone is interested. (click the photo link at the top) They are really great. Less than 4 weeks until Sparky...

OK, enough of the baby blather.