Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I Scan't Believe It

Please forgive the worst blog post title ever. Not too many titles I can use the word 'scan' in, and make it sound remotely witty.

See, I just got a new scanner. Oh, and I found out at Staples that people pretty much never buy scanners any more. So, even technologically, I'm a dinosaur.

But wait, my new scanner rocks. The old one was sooooooooooooooo slooooooooooowwwwwww. I would put a picture on, click the button, then go for coffee. Then drink it, watch some tv, get more coffee, drink it, take a nap, check the scanner, discover that it's at 21%, go do more stuff.

Get the point?

Now, I can flip five pictures on it, click 'multi-scan', and it scans them all separately without any input from me. In like, ten seconds.

All of a sudden I want to scan stuff.

Which is good, since I claimed a box full of clippings and pictures that were my grandmother's from my parents months and months ago. I could never bring myself to face the torture of scanning all of it. Now, I look forward to it!

Here's a picture I scanned tonight as a test.

We old married couples don't get many pictures taken. Especially ones that we *like*. The photographer must have caught us off guard.

Anyway, must go now. Need to sort through clippings.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Ice Ice Baby...

Look at this.

Blades of Glory. I'm starting to think that Will Ferrell can do no wrong.

Just *look* at that tight orange faux-flame design bodysuit. It truly speaks to the woman in me.

I'm sure the movie will be a hard hitting drama with a "Rocky" style rise to the top. And I'll be right there in the front row on opening night, cheering him on.

Makes a guy want to grow his hair long and get into some spandex. And wear a headband. And go twirling around on the ice.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Oh, What a "Night"

Took the kids to "Night at the Museum" tonight.

Despite having read some lukewarm reviews, I can positively state the following:

1) The kids LOVED it. The five-year-old, on the way out of the theatre, extracted from his mother a promise to purchase this movie when it comes out on dvd.

2) The adults enjoyed it as well. I can even say that I stayed awake for the whole thing. It was just neat.

3) Any current big-budget movie with Dick Van Dyke and Mickey Rooney in it has to score some points just out of respect. Now, however, I'll have to explain to my kids who they *are*.

4) It has a monkey.

Need I say more?

I thought not.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

"Underground" Comics... or Comics That Should Be Underground?

Here it is. Direct from the brain of my nine-year-old son. The instant classic, collector's edition, "Bed, Shower, and Cheese" number 1.

You'll probably need to click on it to be able to read it. And please do.

I'm sure it's rife with hidden meaning. Or ANY meaning.

So if you understand it... can you please explain it to me???

Friday, January 26, 2007

24... Different Ways to Kill Someone, I Mean...

First off, let me say that in general I am not a violent person. Neither do I revel in gratuitous violence.

That being said, all bets are off where Jack Bauer is concerned.

I just found a website which lists every person Jack Bauer has... um... dispatched. Sorted by season, with video clips of each one.

It's kind of weird to get nostalgic about things like this, but I do. I was just telling my teenage daughter about this, and we started reminiscing:

"Remember in season two when he was naked and being tortured and they had just stopped his heart, and he still manages to kill them?"

"How about when he was handcuffed on that airplane in season three, and he used his legs to break that guy's neck?"

Ah, memories... (sigh)

Relive a few of your own... at www.bauercount.com. (Just don't start with Curtis Manning in season six... that one's just too sad.)

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Choose Your Words Carefully...

So today I got to help out in my five-year-old's primary class.

It was nice. It's a good group of kids. Half of them are in grade primary and half are grade ones. The teacher is a very nice young woman, filling in for the regular teacher who is on maternity leave. Turns out she comes from Cape Breton like my wife and I do, and she attended the same high school. (Of course, *we* were attending it the year she was *born*. Ugh)

During recess, when all the kids go out to get fresh air, I stay behind in the classroom doing the little tasks the teacher had assigned me.

She comes into the room. At that point, making small talk, I compliment her on having a nice bunch of students.

Or so I think.

She says, "What??"

I repeat myself:

"You have a really nice.... class."

(Ok, the emphasis was only added during the blogging, not during the actual speaking)

Since she was across the room, I'm hopeful that she asked me to repeat myself simply because she didn't hear me clearly.

Not because she was preparing to waltz down to the office and file a harassment suit.

Maybe next time I'll say something like "Hey, I find this to be a really nice group of kids in this particular classroom setting" instead. No way *that* can be misinterpreted.


Friday, January 19, 2007

All You Need is "LOVE". Um, and a CD Player...

A couple of weeks ago, my friend Ken encouraged me to listen to that 'new' Beatles album called "Love".

It's the album which features Beatles music which had been re-mixed for the Cirque Du Soleil.

I listened to it a few times in fits and starts over the past few weeks, but did it again this morning.

If you appreciate the Beatles, it's really worth listening to. It's kind of bizarre when familiar riffs or sounds from one song pop up in another song. As well, some songs actually get totally merged. Which is really quite cool.

My favourite song on this album is for a reason you may not have expected. You might or might not know (I didn't for years) that "Strawberry Fields Forever" as it was originally released, sounded unusual because they had slowed down John Lennon's vocals somewhat, adding an ethereal quality. When I listened to the version on the "Love" album, I immediately noticed that his singing was no longer altered. It sounds just the way it would have when he recorded it. And it's really neat to hear.

If you're a Beatles fan, check it out for yourself. It's worth it just to hear their music in proper 5.1 stereo.

What are you waiting for?

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

The Magical Pepperoni

My teenage daughter volunteered to make some supper for the kids tonight. I think she picked up on my non-verbal cue of sitting there totally ignoring the fact that it was suppertime.

Anyway, she considered making little mini pizzas using English Muffins. She didn't end up doing that, but that's not consequential to our story.

So, as she was scoping out potential ingredients, she noted in the crisper... a stick of pepperoni.

"Hey," she says, "there's some pepperoni in here we could use."

I feel compelled to interject.

"Um, I don't know about that. I bought that pepperoni for your mother's birthday party back in June."

She checks the 'best before' date on the pepperoni, which is August. 2006, of course. She also asks why we would still have such a thing in our refrigerator.

I don't know what to tell her.

Should I tell her that I am amazed that the pepperoni, still sealed in plastic, looks perfectly good? That it's got so many preservatives that it might still be edible a year from now? That I just can't manage to open it and risk eating it, yet I also can't bring myself to dispose of it?

So here I am, typing this post with the pepperoni stick next to the computer. For inspiration I guess.

It really does still look perfectly good.

Maybe it's magic.

I don't want to mess up our karma. I think I'll just go put it back in the fridge now.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Just One of Those Days

All I can say is: Thank God 24's on tonight, so this day isn't a total writeoff.

Lost my job today.

Not too happy about that, really. I liked it there.

Here's the funny thing. This morning I set a new background on my work machine. Look at this:

Kind of appropriate, though, isn't it? Sunny day turns stormy without warning.

Oh, well, tomorrow is another day.

(It might totally suck, but at least it's another day.)


OK, 24's coming on, like, NOW. Must drown myself in the glorious suspenseful violent heroics. Good night.

Note to my mother: Don't worry Mom, I wasn't fired. They re-organized my position out of existence. So if I *need* to collect UI, I will qualify.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Go, Gadget, Go!!

OK, in case I've never mentioned it, I like gadgets.

Sadly, people who like gadgets should be people who can actually afford to buy them. Which, generally, I'm not. That being said, I still manage to do okay.

Take my new Christmas gift from my wife, for instance. It's a new Palm. The name of it is the T/X for anyone who cares, though I don't think it's truly important for the purposes of this story.

Now, it's all loaded with Bluetooth and Wi-fi, so I can hook into my home internet connection.

Like I'm doing now.

The even *neater* thing is that it came with a nifty wireless keyboard. It's a cool little unit that unfolds into a pretty much fullsize keyboard. I just lay my Palm into it, and start typing. It communicates by infrared.

When I first saw that my Palm came with a keyboard, I was kind of, "Gee, that's nice, maybe I'll use it once in a while."

However, now that I'm using it, (and did I mention that I'm actually using it right now?), I'm all, "Holy crap this is cool! I'll be using this thing ALL the time!!"

It's like having a micro-laptop or something. It can come with me anywhere. Even into the washroom!

(And did I mention where I'm typing this post? Let's just say I feel like a king.)

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Holy (Guaca) Moley!

Tonight my wife and I were sitting at the table eating and chatting. I mentioned a tasty green dip that I had recently at my office's Christmas lunch, and she correctly supplied the name I forgot... guacamole.

"That's it." I say. "Boy, was it ever good!"

She says, "Yes, guacamole is awesome. That's why I was so pissed off when you knocked mine over."

"Huh? I knocked over your guacamole? When?"

"That time at our Halloween party when you got so drunk. You knocked it over and nearly passed out in it."

I pause to process this for a moment.

"Um... our Halloween party IN NINETEEN-NINETY-TWO???"

"Yes." Totally straight-faced she tells me this.

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. I couldn't even remember the *name* of guacamole when I ate some less than a month ago, and yet my dear wife remembers me drunkedly knocking hers over almost fifteen years ago.

I'm sure there's a moral here somewhere. Or a joke. While I'm working on those, let's settle for a warning:

Guys. When you've had a few too many drinks, FOR GOD'S SAKE WATCH OUT FOR THE GUACAMOLE DIP!!!

One Man's Trash...

My 9-year-old son is in Cubs. They can earn badges by demonstrating effort or ability in different areas.

On Thursday night, shortly before his Cub meeting, my son tells me, "Dad! I'm *finally* getting my collector's badge tonight!"

I say, "That's really good, little buddy. What collection are you bringing in?"

"Our batteries."

"Our batteries??"

"Yeah! The ones we collect in that bottle in the cupboard!"


"Um. Those aren't exactly a collection. They're garbage. We keep them in the bottle until we take them somewhere to get disposed of properly. We don't actually *collect* them!!"

"Oh well, that's ok! I'll take it anyway."

I point out to him that I'm pretty sure the point of the badge is to demonstrate that *he* has actually collected something over a period of time. Like, for instance, his binder full of Pokemon cards.

He doesn't actually respond. But I see the little *BING!* go off in his brain, and he runs to the playroom to get his cards.

Kids. Sometimes they don't see the forest for the trees.

You know what's really funny though? He's just like me. Just now, typing this post, I remember when I did the same kind of thing when I was in Cubs as a kid. For my "collection", I brought in....

"TV Guide" covers.

Yup. Ripped the covers off TV Guide for a few weeks and threw them in a binder. Never actually thinking that the hundreds and hundreds of comic books I had accumulated and stored would qualify as a *real* collection.

I got the badge anyway. Just like my son probably would have for his.... um... battery collection.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

When Geeks Grow Up and Earn Disposable Income...

... they buy multimedia projectors that look like R2-D2.

Um, unless they decided to have five kids instead.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Sushi To Go

Um, we need a new fish.

Our friend Sushi has swum off into uncharted waters.

I discovered him this morning. He was... a little less active than usual. A little less orange as well.

The kids all took it as expected. A bit sad, but not unreasonably so. We called their mother at work and gave her the bad news. She took it pretty well. ;)

However, the mind of the child, no matter how deeply in mourning, still doesn't miss any potential for opportunism.

When I mention to the five-year-old that I'm sure we can probably get another fish, he says:

"If they're all out of fish, can we get a dog???"

Thursday, January 04, 2007

That's Super, Boy!

So at bedtime the other night the 5 year old says to me, "Remember, I want a tattoo like yours."

Actually I didn't.

"But I want Superman, not Batman."

We discuss it a little more. As I talk to him about it more, he explains that he wants one that *never* wears off. Like mine.

I tell him that kids aren't allowed to get tattoos that stay forever. They need to wait until they're big.

He wants one anyway.

I tell him that the people who put the tattoos on aren't even *allowed* to put them on kids.

He suggests that, maybe, I could tell them it's for me, and bring it home, and then I could put it on him instead. Hmm. Points for problem solving.

First, I tell him that it wouldn't be nice to fib. *Then* I explain that real tattoos don't go on like that. (Maybe I'll have to show him the pictures from when I got my tattoo on my last birthday.)

I tell him that maybe I'll use a permanent marker that will stay on for a *while* anyway. That satisfies him. Off to sleep he goes, happy.

Tonight, as I come home from work, he runs up to me. "Dad!! Remember you need to give me a tattoo!!!"

Right. Good memory.

So I go get a red Sharpie marker. Permanent. Draw him a nice little red 'S'. It looks good, he's pretty happy with it. He wants the yellow in there too. So a yellow highlighter finishes the deal.

He tells me that when it comes off, I need to put it back on.

So how long does a permanent marker 'tattoo' stay on a kid's arm, anyway? Strangely enough, even after five kids, I've never had a reason to find out.

Until now. But I guess we'll see.