Thursday, July 31, 2008

Handsome family

We had a professional photographer take Grayson's 3-month pictures a couple of weeks ago, and she asked us all to get in the frame for a couple of poses. Here's a proof.


We're really happy with the photo package and will be using her regularly. I can't get over what a cute little boy we have! (funny, he vaguely resembles Pierce Brosnan)

Road rage for 100, Alex

So there I was, driving up Main Street, minding my own business and toting pizza home from our favorite 'za joint.

Behind me, an asshole.*

Main Street is a four-lane road through downtown O'Fallon, so there are plenty of opportunities to pass. At the time I was driving 40 miles per hour (speed limit is 30) and was keeping pace with other cars around me.

The guy behind me was apparently in a hurry to get somewhere, so he figured driving about a foot from my rear bumper would help him reach his destination in a timely manner. Combined with swerving back and forth, backing off and then gunning his engine to get to within inches of my bumper, he was carefully sculpting his star on the Jagoff Walk of Fame.

Of course this called for The Tapping of the Brakes. "Back off, Mario."

This apparently turned out to be the straw that broke the azzhole's back.

Gestures flew, he started beating his dashboard and summoning me to pull over and fight him. I ignored his loving gestures and got into the left turn lane. He pulled in behind me and started getting out of his car. 'Scuse me?? Fortunately, the light turned green and we were off.

At that point I called 911.

Once I made the left turn I pulled over to the shoulder to let him pass so I could get his plate info. Apparently he took it that I wanted to fight and pulled over behind me. I continued to drive 10 mph along the shoulder until I reached my subdivision.

The dispatcher had all kinds of advice for me: Don't get out of the car. Lock the doors. Keep moving if possible. What is he wearing? What make/model/color car is he driving? How the hell am I supposed to know? He's too close to see anything.

Meanwhile I turned into my subdivision and avoided my house. All I needed was Mr. Jagoff to know where I live. He decided to pull alongside me, roll the window down and shout obscenities at me. "Wanna fight me asshole? C'mon, let's settle this now!"

"Dude, settle what? You just need to get off my fucking bumper." For some reason, my words made him get out of his car and give chase on foot. I assure you I can drive faster than he can run.

Not one to give up, he got back in his car and chased me down the road again. I let him pass so I could give his plate info to the dispatcher. He decided to pull in front of me and park sideways to block the road. Again he got out and started to chase me on foot. (this time in reverse - what a fuckin' idiot!)

I circled the block and lost sight of him. Apparently he's a pussy and a quitter because he disappeared.

Forty-five seconds later the officer showed up and took my statement. A few minutes after I got home, the cop came to the door and told me they ran the plates and knew where he lived, and how would I like to proceed? I could charge him with disturbing the peace and attempted assault.

"Neh. Just go to his house and make him shit his pants. If he has an issue with any of it, come back and I will press charges. Tell him I said he's a cocky punk who needs to learn how to drive."

"One of my favorite things to do." With that he was off to pay a visit to Mr. Douche.

Would you have filed charges or let him skate?


*I guess technically we all have an asshole behind us.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Insert title here

I'm in a blog funk. Maybe I just don't feel like talking today... I don't know. I just want to veg out and listen to Dave. Is that so wrong?

Saturday, July 26, 2008

When what to my wandering eyes should appear?

We were watching the Yankees/Red Sox game today and the camera caught the umpire at a most inopportune moment.


If you look more closely, you can see the crack sweat.


He should have worn depends, I guess. Isn't crack sweat the worst fashion faux pas?

Chicks dig me


More Photofunia!

Friday, July 25, 2008

My son, the star

Photofunia is addicting. Go there and make some of your own.



Props to Steve.

Stop harping

Moments ago, Em and I were discussing music for our wedding as she listened to demo selections from a harpist. The Wedding March came on the speakers and she smirked. "Heard that song before, hon?"

Well yes I have. And oddly enough, now I'm not in the mood to hear it again.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Gaffigan's Island

The comic I'd like to see live these days is Jim Gaffigan. Here are the outtakes from his Saturn television campaign.



Thanks, Aly.

Photo Stream

I've placed a link on my right sidebar titled "iPhone photos." As I wander through life, I will be clicking photos here and there, and uploading them to the slideshow. None of them need captions, and you're welcome to check them out anytime. Hopefully it'll give you insight into what is happening with me and the entire fam-damily.


As an example, this was Saturday night as my friend Dr. Mike and I enjoyed a few cocktails on the patio. I think we solved several global issues... but I can't remember the solutions now. (for some reason)

New stock footage, maybe?

MSNBC ran a piece this morning about a study that concluded cell phone usage does cause cancer. Concern for that study's findings notwithstanding, couldn't MSNBC find better cell phone 'B roll' than this?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

iDoctor

Make note of another convert, as Dr. Mike and I went to the Apple store in the Galleria yesterday to get him set up with his own iPhone. He's a former Verizon customer and seems extremely happy with his purchase.

We were probably 15th in line so I figured we'd be out of luck. Not the case, as we were able to snag one with no problem. I can't say the same for those in line behind us, I got the feeling they were running low when we left. The amazing thing is, after the phone had been on sale for almost two weeks, there was STILL a line of probably 35 people on a Tuesday morning trying to get one.

Since I stood in line with him, I contemplated buying another one for myself. Surely I could find a way to sell it on eBay and make some cash. But the fact is, since they are forcing activation before you leave the store, I would have had to pay the cancellation fee AND the balance of the $$ (in this case an extra 300) for purchasing an unactivated phone. The quick math confirmed I had made the right decision to leave well enough alone.


This was early. Later another 10 to 15 people lined up behind us. I considered selling my place in line - in fact, offered it to an Iranian guy who mumbled something about death to America. I guess he's no longer going to deposit 20 million into my bank account, the bastard.

Down a road...

While in Lincoln MO today, attending the funeral of a friend and visiting my Mom, I passed several things along Zion Church Road that were begging to be photographed. I stopped, got out of the car and snapped these with my iPhone.

This is the view looking west, right outside Lincoln. I'm not sure how long this road is, but for all I know it might go on forever. It looks more like a slice of time than a place.

Mailboxes always make interesting photos. Fill in your own caption here.

Agricultural products are Lincoln's primary export. This grain elevator just went up and it actually changes the skyline of Lincoln. (not so hard to do)

Zion Church Road's namesake. It's been there as long as I can remember. A beautiful piece of Americana.

I didn't have to pull over, nobody was coming for miles in any direction. Lincoln's kind of a lonely, quiet little place these days.

Bluish Gray

My other baby (when did she grow up anyway?)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Another country heard from

In my email box this morning was a comment I almost deleted, supposedly from a fella in Nigeria.

As I was preparing to hit delete, I realized it wasn't spam, it was a pretty funny comment to a post I made in June. Check out "anonymous" at the bottom.

Sitemeter is a handy thing. I clicked and found out the comment came from someone in Boulder CO, after having found my blog via the term ass parchment, which is a term I used for toilet tissue in the post.

I'm not sure why he searched the term ass parchment, but I found out it's a term nobody has used in context on the internet prior to my entry. Another proud moment for me... (insert eye-roll emoticon here)

Monday, July 21, 2008

For My Wedding

Violet and I will exchange nuptials in May 2009, and I've decided what the guys in my wedding will be wearing.

The Fuxedo.



Thanks, Aly.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Your junk is showing

As I box up all the dumpsteriffic stuff from the garage so we can park two cars inside, I've been making trips to our storage space this week.

There are few places more lonely than a storage lot on a late weekend afternoon. I've never seen another person there. Most of the spaces are occupied by stuff people no longer need but can't seem to throw away. Family "heirlooms," bikes no longer ridden, golf clubs no longer used (because I SUCK at it), boxes full of divorce file folders and other various and sundry junk. (this is a shot of our particular storage space, complete with large pink flamingo)

There are lonely, partially wrecked cars parked all around with flat tires and broken windows, a dumpster for move-outs, and tumbleweeds. There's just something melancholy about the place.

While there I snapped a few pictures and wondered how long it would be until someone else happened along.

Friday, July 18, 2008

It came to me in a dream...

The new Apple iPhone is quite the incredible piece of equipment. At least that's what I hear.

It's too bad I haven't actually gotten to touch mine yet. For a week, it's been in a warehouse somewhere, longing to be held. Lonely. Wasting away.

Needless to say, I'm less than impressed with the rollout of the 3G units. AT&T stores were ill-equipped to handle activations, and horribly understocked. The store I visited had 20 units to sell on day one, leaving my only option to either go to an Apple store or order mine to be delivered. Stupidly, I went with option two.

On any given day since, I could have gone to the Galleria Apple store at the moment they opened and gotten a new phone. In fact, last night I decided that today I would cancel my AT&T order and do just that.

That is, until The Dream.

Last night I dreamed that I got up and hit refresh on AT&T's order tracker and it indicated my phone had been shipped. (for the past week it has indicated "backordered" and given no estimated time of shipping) Several times in my dream I refreshed the site, to make sure it wasn't just a dream. Then I woke up. Bummer, I had hoped to have the new phone before the weekend so Emily and I could get both of them them set up the way we wanted.

So I got up and went into the kitchen, clicked the refresh button on my notebook PC just for shits and giggles, and went in to get Grayson out of bed. When I returned, the screen indicated "shipped," gave me a tracking number and said it would arrive today before 3 pm.

I'm not proud of the elation I felt. It means I'm a geek in the truest sense of the word. Nobody should swoon over a telephone... it's just not right. But I did receive a little lift knowing that today, I would release the phone from the bondage of its cramped box and allow it to climb into my pocket where it is safe and warm. I'm only hoping it doesn't smell the old iPhone and feel threatened or jealous.

It's about freakin' time, AT&T. Sorry, but you get poor marks for this transaction. I'm only hoping the rest of my experience with the 3G iPhone is better. I'll let you know.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Bond. Dave Bond.

Pierce Brosnan was the guest on last night's The Daily Show, and Emily revealed that she has always been attracted to him. How could I mind? He's 007, for chrissake.

As we watched she kept looking back and forth between me and the television and came to a realization - she thinks I resemble him in appearance and mannerisms.

Maybe she's right. I've never noticed it before but as this unretouched photo demonstrates, there is a strange resemblance between Pierce Brosnan and me.

Oddly enough, the women of my last three major relationships thought I resembled movie stars. One thought I looked like Timothy Robbins, another John Travolta.

And now I'm Pierce Brosnan. As I told Em good night, I did so with a British accent. It totally made her hot.

While we're on the subject, I think she looks a little like Lisa Kudrow. Do you agree?

HP = Heave Printer

Ever thrown a printer across the room and heard it slam to the ground, crushing the internal parts into useless plastic shards? I had never known that experience until yesterday.*

After clicking "OK" for the 40th time because the black cartridge was empty, and reprinting a check to the federal government (which was due in 30 minutes) a handful of times because the printer couldn't understand that the paper WAS, in actuality, inserted correctly... I blew a small gasket.

Pulling the power cord from the wall (and that's all because it was a wireless printer) I picked up the printer, turned toward the door and heaved it into the family room outside of my office.

"CRASH!!!!!" At the same time it felt great and horrible.

I made out the check by hand, got to the bank with 45 seconds left, then went to Office Depot and bought a new printer. (it's such a new model, it's not even on their website yet - they had just gotten it in that day) I'll never go back to HP printers again - I'm a Brother man now.

The new printer is quite large and very heavy - therefore not throwable.



And now the fine print - I'm not proud of losing my temper. I haven't been that mad in a long time, and it was the culmination of several events during the day that stacked up over time. I hate waste. It was an okay printer and was only 8 or 9 months old, but it seemed crazy to allow a piece of equipment to stand in the way of productivity. I figured since it wasn't working I needed to replace it... but I feel pretty stupid for having thrown it.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Hungry? Eat your People Magazine

It was announced today that photos of the new Brangelina twins were in such demand that People Magazine is paying eleven million dollars for the rights to publish them exclusively.

Eleven, then six zeroes.

What has America become? While I realize the money will go to charity as a requirement from Angelina, it's simply unfathomable that in this society, photos of these children are in such demand. It's almost perverse...

Sunday, July 13, 2008

On the sixth day Gray created poop (a baby story)

When a baby is born, he generally poops quite frequently. In fact, it usually happens at every diaper change... many times directly after the change.

Then, within two or three months, something strange happens. The infant metabolism begins to change. The frequency of mango pudding pants (exactly what it looks like) slows down and sometimes even... stops.

Six days ago, Gray's Creation of Caca came to a screeching halt. It was as if someone had applied a cork.

Don't get me wrong, the diaper-changer in me rejoiced. We had looked forward to the slowing-of-the-flow for a long time, but for it to just stop? It's not something we anticipated.

The father in me freaked. Three days came and went. Four. FIVE days. (yesterday) Do you know what happens (other than hydroelectricity) when a dam is built?

And then came today, The Sixth Day.

It began like any other day. Grayson woke up between 6:00 and 7:00 am. He ate, he napped. Steady as she goes.

Do you know how dogs can sense impending natural disaster? Regis got the shakes and ran to the basement. I knew something evil was afoot.

As I was making coffee, Grayson's face turned a little red and he got a determined look on his face. A smell began permeating the air. I recognized the signs, grabbed the baby and ran for the shelter of the changing table. All the supplies we would need are there.

The natural disaster was apparently a volcano... and all we could do was sit tight and ride it out. After what felt like hours of eruption, belching of "smoke" and "ash," finally it was calm.

As I opened the diaper to survey the damage, the humid, acrid air enveloped my head and tears filled my eyes. The damage was widespread. The butt-lava flow had gotten into every crevice of his junk. Many trailer parks were destroyed.

I declared the diaper a disaster area and entered Rescue and Recovery mode. It required seven wet-wipes, a very strong gag reflex and all my National Guard-like skills.

Despite the widespread damage, no reinforcements would come. I was on my own, and that's okay. I do my best work in solitude. I had been preparing for this moment all my life. I dug in and did what I had to do... and before I knew it, the entire area had been rehabbed and life in Gray's pants was back to normal.

Yes, the Diaper Genie II paid for itself today.

Previous to Grayson's birth, I thought moms were the ones who changed the diapers. Today I discovered it takes a man to save the world.

On the sixth day, Gray created poop. And it was good.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Highest rollover rating in his class

Sometimes you just need your best friend to show you how it's done.

video

That's my boy! I'm very proud of him and yet I wish he'd slow down a little. No rush, Gray. Rolling over means crawling. Crawling means walking. Walking can take you out the door and far away.

So I have an idea... let's just lay here on our tummies and play. Forget about that silly rolling over thing, okay son? There's plenty of time for that.

Friday, July 11, 2008

iHate waiting

I'm sure you've hit refresh a thousand times wondering how my iPhone excursion went this morning. Right?

After returning home last night from a guy's night out, I made the mistake of sleeping for a couple of hours. I dozed off and didn't wake up until 5:15, which was about an hour later than I planned. I drove by the AT&T store on highway K, which had a line of about 35 people. Judging from last year's iPhone allotment of 30 phones for that store, I had little chance of getting one there.

I drove through Starbucks for a latte and to contemplate options. I pulled out my first generation iPhone and went to AT&T's website to find another nearby store. The phone wouldn't pull up the site - it gave me the error "can't activate EDGE." Ironic, because EDGE is the whole reason I'm upgrading to iPhone 3G. Bastards!

Finally I was able to get on the site and find an alternate store. Upon arrival I found a line of about 25 people, so I grabbed a lawn chair out of the trunk and took a seat.

I sat. I waited. I contemplated the soul of my sensei, Steve Jobs. I prayed to the iGods.

This was the view before me.

This was the view behind me.

And this was what I saw when I entered the store:


They only had about 20 phones. Fuckity fuck! My only recourse was to order one, which will take about five days. If you know me, you know I'm not good with that! I'm definitely the instant gratification type.

For now, I'll have to make do with the software update that was released today for all iPhones. Honestly there is little difference between the old iPhone and the new one anyway... I'm mostly getting the new one because Em wants my first-gen phone.

Or at least that's the story I'm going with.

iHype

After a night out with the boys, I find myself with an interesting decision to make. It's 2:00 AM, and in just a (relatively) few hours the new 3G iPhone will go on sale.

Last year it was an easy proposition. The iPhone 2G became available at 6:00 PM, and I simply waited until about 5:55 PM and drove to the AT&T store. I was the 29th person in line, and easily waltzed in to snag one of thirty they had.

This year it's a different situation. A little while ago (after listening to Dr. Zhivegas play at Brewskee's) I rolled past the AT&T store and there were about 15 people in line already. The first people arrived at 8:00 PM last night, and considering it's O'Fallon, MO... that's pretty good. Based on last year's figures, I figured if I arrive a couple of hours before they go on sale, I should easily get one.

Dr. Mike wants one as well, but I can't represent him in line - he has to be present to transfer his service from Verizon. We had hatched a plan to jump in line early and blog about our experience, but he has to work at 8:30 am, so he had to bow out. I'm not one to go it alone, so I figure I'll get a couple of hours of rest and then wander by to see what's shaking.

The people I saw in line were an interesting mix of PS3 and Dungeons and Dragons. I'm not sure if I want the phone badly enough to attempt to fit in...

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Baby photos!

First, an announcement. Today, Grayson rolled over for the first time ever... like, three times! Front to back, in both directions. And while I'm waxing infant, he has gone TWO days without pooping. Yes, the child who pooped six to eight times a day for two months has now nearly ceased defecating.

I know, minutia of parenthood makes for boring reading... and yet I forge ahead.

It's hard to believe Grayson will be three months old tomorrow! Here are a few photos, arranged from oldest to newest.


A little nap for a little guy. He baby-snores too.


You wonder what he's thinking. Most likely "pflegimnowrp."


A nap is a nap, even if it's on Dad.


As I said, a nap is a nap.

He's starting to develop his facial features and personality - he's a little over a month old here.

Joe Cool, getting ready for a stroll in the neighborhood.


He looks like his Dad. And yet like his Mom. And to think this photo was taken before he could speak Portugese. Time flies.

Monday, July 07, 2008

"Cangies daddy?"

A famous Courtney quote. She couldn't say candy, she pronounced it "CAIN-gees." Anyway, as I perused the cangies aisle of Walgreens the other day, I started reminiscing about when I was a real afficionado. A list of my favorites and/or notables follows.

Wax lips:

We all did them as kids. They were great as a candy AND as a toy. We would nibble away at the edges until they became thin, sickly looking lips. Then we'd begin at the ends and make them thin, sickly and pursed lips. This candy put an end to the parental edict 'don't play with your food.'

Soda bottles:

Similar to wax lips, except with a special sweet center. I tired of the bland wax pretty quickly, but I'd make the liquid last. My approach - bite off the top, drink a little and bite the top closed again. Repeat until the good stuff was gone. Feed the remainder of the wax to the dog. Watch him for hours.

Circus peanuts:

I mention them not because I love them, but because I loathe them. Horrible texture experience and sickening flavor. Just nasty. 'Nuff said.

Payday:

Reigning favorite candy bar. Salty on the outside, sweet on the inside, crunchy in between. It's a veritable cornucopia of flavors and textures. I justify consumption by telling myself peanuts are full of the good cholesterol.

Gummy Worms:

Guilty pleasure. I usually consume them on a long road trip when I'm alone. I look away as the clerk rings up my purchase, then I make believe I'm five years old and can already drive. I mean why would an adult eat worms, for chrissake?

Bit-O-Honey:

Jaw-locking, diabetes-inducing slabs of sugary goodness. One candy bar lasts you most of a day and that's without an insulin injection. It battles Payday for my favorite candy bar, but its limited availability keeps it a close second. And also I have fillings I want to keep.

Hot Tamales:

What can I say? You can't see a movie without Hot Tamales, popcorn and lemonade. They are the perfect test for sweet-tooth. If you eat several at a time you can even develop these little cinammon blisters on the roof of your mouth. (Hey did anyone notice Lindsey Lohan is holding Hot Tamales?)

Marshmallow chicks:

Another one I included just to say "blech." I eat one every Easter, just to say I did. Kind of a rite of passage or something. They are too sweet and cause me to feel like I'm drowning. Another great sweet-tooth locator. Never a pleasant experience. And yet I persist...

Boston Beans:

Mmmmmm. Sort of a weird texture/flavor combo. I can eat three to five pounds before puking them back up. I never understood why Boston gets credit for the candy. The actual bean, I understand.

Any favorite cangies to share?

In a bit of a (toe) jam

This gets the award for the grossest story of the week:

LINK (courtesy StLToday.com)

"The dog chewed off the toe and part of the toe joint and also severed an artery. Floyd said there had been an adhesive bandage on the toe because she had a hangnail."
Apparently the moral of the story is, if you're diabetic, suffer neuropathy and own a dog, you should wear steel-toed boots to bed.

I tasted bile as I read this story. The dog was euthanized... but apparently got his choice of final meal.


"Bad dog! BAD DOG!!! NO biscuit."