Archive for the ‘F-U-N – FUN.’ Category

Toe be or not toe be.

Update: Lemurita has not chiseled off my toe. It may be worth saving.

Welp, I saw my regular doc as the followup to the “I”m tired of this” urgent care visit last weekend.

See, every morning I got up and it would seem better, and I’d think “What was I thinking last night?  This clearly isn’t as bad as it seemed then” and then I’d be glad I didn’t see anyone.  But by the end of each day I’d be sucking wind and it would be swollen as bad as the day before and I would think “What was I thinking? Was I brain dead?”

Long story short I saw a doc Saturday who said my toe was broken and who was ok with me asking for the lesser pain med route because Tylenol was amazingly inadequate. The other stuff was also amazingly inadequate. It was about as effective as an ear massage.  I followed up Monday with my doc and she opted for sending me to the ortho guy.

She said “Look, I know you don’t want to take heavier pain meds but you are clammy and sweaty and you obviously are in pain… you have a broken foot.  You are walking on it.

I didn’t struggle as hard as I would have last week. I obviously can’t work effectively in a medicated state but it helps in the evening.

The ortho guy said there was nothing to be done for it. Totally unsurprised by his statement because it was pretty much what I said to his nurse: I don’t know why I am here because you cannot do much for this… I said, “Great, I am happy about that. What I could use is something that is not a cast that can immobilize my foot so I can walk on it.”

Entertheboot. $80 got me something far better than the paddle flip flop thing, which isn’t saying a whole lot because a piece of McDonald’s breakfast sausage is a step up from the flip-flop. And it has these pumpy-ports to clamp on the heel and support it.


I won’t lie, it isn’t the answer to a pain-free hobbling because it does clamp down on the toes. But it is far far far far far far better than the buddy taping I tried last week, and it keeps the toes from flexing back and forth as you walk. That is a huge step.

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Never mind. They pulled it. It was funny. So sorry.

Hope everyone is well.

The link might not last long but a fun Bryan Cranston loop around from Walter to Hal from Malcolm in the Middle.

Breaking in the Middle.

I thought it was funny as hell. Requires knowledge of BB for the creepy second half to make sense.

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We met with Spaced Diode over coffee this morning and he and Lemurita played a game of chess while we ate onion rings and got really amped on caffeine.  I admit to stealing onion rings from my family.  I’m in the wrong there.  I suck.

As we left the coffee shop we ran into people from the stuffed teddy bear factory on the corner who were dressed in full teddy bear suits.

Kids.  Do NOT feed the bears.  Don’t run from them and don’t tease them… Do NOT look them in the eyes!  It’s a sign of aggression!  Don’t look at them!   – Lemur King to his children upon coming across two adults in giant teddy bear outfits

Yes.  I really said that.  No, I don’t know what the people thought.  I didn’t stick around because adults in giant animal suits kind of creep me out.  That sort of thing should remain in the bedroom between consenting adults.


Ran across a blog I’d seen for the first time quite a while back.  The section I enjoyed the most was “Steve!  Don’t Eat It!”  I threw the quote up at Nazi Surf Kittens Must Die because it hasn’t been touched in months.

In general I’m looking for things that are apolitical.  I’m sick of politicians.

The only thing weirder than me drinking breast milk, is the fact that milk is coming out of my wife’s chest in the first place. It sure as hell didn’t do that when I met her.  I’m telling you, the whole thing is lunacy.  I love my wife, but does she really have to be such a mammal?   – Steve, at “Steve!  Don’t Eat It!

I have to say, that’s comedy gold, especially if you have experienced the situation yourself.

If you feel inclined to answer what is normally an admittedly socially inappropriate question, how many female mammals who read this blog have… uh… previously lactated and tasted what was on tap yourselves?

I expect zero (0) answers to that question, but dammit, I’m curious. 

Also, I just realized today that NSKMD is over two years old.  Two years since the starting of that thing.  I remember with crystal clarity discussing the idea with taobmaetS ooGcM, as if it was yesterday.  He said something that I can’t quote exactly and I am unclear on what I said in return but it was all pretty profound.  He fired it up anyway because hey, blogs are cheap.


For Halloween I read Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart” to Lemurita with the promise of some HP Lovecraft when I can find a good story to get her started in the genre.  Last night during dinner Lemurita made me so proud… she said “Dad, can we read some Shakespeare sometime?”

My jaw hit the table.  The greatest wordsmith in the histoory f humankind – the Chopin of the literature world – and my daughter wants to read at least some of his works with me.  She isn’t even ten yet.
I tried my damnedest to recite from Hamlet from memory – failing, however devoutly to be wish’d that I could do otherwise – but she got the idea.  Cruel Wife doesn’t personally enjoy his complicated thought structure but she was supportive.  I find this particularly amusing because within the last two weeks I tried to get CW interested in watching a modern adaptation of The Tempest with me.

No, it is not a great adaptation but I liked the Mirren version of Prospero (Prospera) and I thought Ariel was creepy-fantastic.  It wasn’t awesome but it wasn’t awful, either.  It just was.

CW opined that Lemurita might first enjoy “Much Ado About Nothing” on video first, then move into the written form.  I think that’s a fair compromise.  I did read to her a portion of MacBeth for grins and giggles because I thought she’d enjoy the imagery from the witches’ brew and their troublemaking.

And she did enjoy the imagery.  Grossed her out with the “finger of birth-strangled babe” part though.

I cannot wait until she’s old enough to read Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo


We watched Paul last night (Simon Pegg and Nick Frost).  It is not as good as Shaun of the Dead but it isn’t bad, either.  Paul, the beer-drinking weed-smoking alien was pretty good CG.

Paul: This is America. Kidnapping a Christian is worse than harboring a fugitive.

Heh.  Paul fell shy of encompassing a hat-tip to Redneck Rampage but it didn’t do horribly, either.  It could have used a Vixen and some Moon Pies but I don’t expect Pegg to be particularly knowledgeable about Moon Pies.

Graeme Willy: You are an alien!
Paul: To you I am, yes.
Graeme Willy: Are you gonna probe us?
Paul: *Why* does everyone always assume that? What am I doing? Am I harvesting farts? How much can I learn from an ass?

Anyone out there know how probing came to be associated with aliens?  I mean, who decided to “go there” with that idea in the first place?  Of course… it really is proof that aliens are real, isn’t it?  Obviously no normal person would just make the probing stuff up, right?


Apparently some people in Chicago don’t understand that a “Job Fair” isn’t where they hire you, it is where people sniff butts and network – job seekers meet employers, blunt character assassinations take place, oppression and exploitation of the downtrodden, etc.  At least those were the only behaviors at all the job fairs I ever went to.  I never saw a job application at a job fair.

Rodney Booker said, “I stood in line for four hours. They better give me a Wal-Mart gift card, or something.”

Rodney, you just provided a potential clue as to why you might be out of work right now.  A large number of people are looking for gainful employment and many of them are smart and capable people but there is also a percentage like yourself that might – just might – be looking because… you’re an idiot.

“… better give me a Wal-Mart gift card…” –

Seriously, is this something you believe?

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Cruel Wife and Lemurita are out camping on one of those “wimmin only” outings so it is just myself and HackerBoy.

We got a large pizza last night – I ate half and he ate all of the other half minus one slice.

He taught me how to play Skylander™.  He’s too nice of a kid to say it to me but I know he’s come to the conclusion that I suck.  I know this because we met with Spaced Diode today and he said “Dad sucks at Skylander™”.


HackerBoy suggested on the way home that he maybe he ought to teach me “Lego Indiana Jones” because it is easier.  Double-ouch.  My son thinks that as far as video games go I’m on par with a retarded puppy.

Tonight, corn dog bites, tater tots, and chocolate pudding.  Man food.

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Destructive Duo.

Update:  A good friend who I will not name but it’s Aggie has suggested a new name for Girlhead.  I am so enamored of it that I’m throwing it out there and y’all can vote but I’m 90% of the way to adopting it.  It just sounds purty.


Let’s take a vote – regarding Girlhead’s stage name on this blog – should we:

A) Keep it the way it is – “Girlhead”?


B) Change it to “Lemur Girl”?


C) Lemurita


It’s no secret that I really resonate with my daughter Lemurita, and nine is such a fun age in my opinion.  The other night we took apart the broken kitchen clock, down to the component gears, and talked about gear ratios, electromagnetics (the teensy motor), and put it back carefully to restore it to working order.  So she got to see what I’ve done all my life, which is take things apart – she still doesn’t have a clue how many things I’ve never been able to properly reassemble but I told her that even those are things you learn from.

Why fight to save an old kitchen clock?  Because the replacement Cruel Wife had is hideous.  She thinks it is “pretty”.  I think it looks like a bunch of impressionistic painters and their cats got run over by a rock crusher.

Today Lemurita came to me and said “Lemur-Dad, can we take something apart?”

Well, far be it for me to tell her “No, Lemurita, we can’t destroy anything today” when it is clearly not true.  You can destroy something every day of your life if you are gifted.  We went out to the garage to look for something to cannibalize or outright destroy.

Lemurita firmly refuses to let me anywhere near the transmission of her mom’s car even though I swear to her that we’d put it back right where we found it and even though I tell her that taking apart a CVT drive system would be the pinnacle of our lives and quite possibly the lives of three generations of Lemurs to come.  “NO!  You’d never get it back together!”  Cruel Wife came into the room and said “That’s RIGHT, Lemurita.  Don’t you pay any attention to your dad.”

Update:  After promising Lemurita that the odds were good that Cruel Wife would birth puppies if we took her transmission apart she changed her tune and insisted that NOW we be allowed to take her CVT tranny out and have our way with it.  What Lemurita does not realize is that Cruel Wife has already donated a sewing machine to our efforts.  Yes, Lemurita and Lemur-Dad are going to start taking apart a sewing machine soon.  I think it will be a blast.

I looked at the fridge in the garage and the motor was just going to be too much hassle to get to even with the Sawzall, which is the only way I will work on a fridge.  Either that or a sledgehammer.

We grabbed a hard drive I had sitting in a moldering pile of old hard drives, motherboards, and obsolete video cards.  I suppose I could have spent some time pondering if there was something still valuable on it but if it was in a pile of hard drives sitting on top of the woodburning stove, unattended and unloved, then I’m of the opinion that it probably wasn’t high-importance – and if it was… oops.

We drilled it out and cracked open the case, we studied the ultra-lightweight heads, the drive head mechanism and the magnets, and we asked ourselves why the mechanism is so stiff and the magnets so beefy (it’s all about quick crisp response).

We handed it over to Franken-Boy who did his part with the first contact (look at the platter at the 3:30 location) and promptly went back to playing Skylander.

She immediately said “What else can we take apart??”

I looked at Cruel Wife guiltily.  “I’m afraid I’ve given her the ‘Take-Apart Bug’.  I’m so sorry.

CW just looked at me and grinned.  She’s an engineer, I’m an engineer… she knows the score.


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A Book Review, Plus Some.

John Dies at the End

I read Cracked.com and I enjoy it immensely. David Wong writes there a lot and he ran out and wrote a book that is irreverent, funny, clever, and at times even a bit creepy. It is being made into a movie.

Here is a quote from it:

Last night you had a dream, Arnie. You were being chased through a forest by your mother. She was lashing you with a whip made of knotted penises.

Damn if that isn’t a twisted visual.

I tried to cull up other quotes but they would be long, because while Wong typically uses shorter sentences the set-up for his humor takes a bit of time. I am writing from my iPad and do not want to do a lot of transcribing. Do not let the short sentence remark slow your decision to read the book – it is quite excellent.

How could you NOT like a book about end-of-the-world ghostbusters who can see the supernatural because of their use of their own specially-blended mix of hallucinogenic drugs?

I would tell you more but firstly I haven’t finished the book and secondly I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you.

Go here to learn more… http://johndiesattheend.com/#

More later tonight when I am not using the pad.


There’s this drug going around:

On the street they call it Soy Sauce. It’s a drug that promises an out-of-body experience with each hit. Users drift across time and dimensions. But some who come back are no longer human. Suddenly a silent otherworldly invasion is underway, and mankind needs hero. What it gets instead is John and David, a pair of college dropouts who can barely hold down jobs.

Based on some of the descriptions I think it is pretty obvious that this Soy Sauce is a real phenomenon and it is centered around Washington DC.

And thanks to Soylent for his movie link below.

I really really really really hope that this movie is worth watching.  The visuals are great.  Come on, let’s not insult Edgar Rice Burroughs, Hollywood.

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Franken-boy turned six recently.  The wrap-around in the title has more to do with a python wrapped around a limb this weekend than any intellectual exercise.

Some weekends we usually go to this small coffee shop a half hour away and hang out with my buddy from the UofM.  About a month ago we were there and we had someone give us a flyer to a reptile zoo.  We offered to the boy the chance to have his birthday party with a bunch of snakes and lizards or Chuck E. Cheese’s.  I would argue that either place gives you snakes and lizards but the zoo has higher-quality ones.

Here is the question:

Do six year old boys like birthday parties if they involve snakes and lizards?

Do frogs have watertight assh*les?  Of course they do!  Are bears Catholic?  Does the Pope crap in the woods?  Do Occupy America losers sniff their own farts?

We got the party favors, Cruel Wife baked a snake-cake, we brought in pop, and we made a pizza run partway through the party.

What was there?  Glad you asked, because that is what I asked.  There were:

  1. Pythons
  2. Chameleons
  3. Tortoises
  4. Bearded Dragons
  5. Blue-Tongued Skinks (minor disappointment on my part when I learned that it was skinks and not skanks, but in the context we were working in, skinks really made more sense)
  6. Boas
  7. Rhino Iguanas (will charge anything but didn’t use a single credit card while we were there)
  8. Monitor lizards
  9. Crickets (food)
  10. Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches (maybe food)
  11. Scorpions†
  12. Tarantulas‡
  13. Brazilian Pink Salmon Bird Eating Tarantula (say that even once really fast, I dare you)
  14. Uromastyxes
  15. More criters
  16. Still more critters
  17. And more critters

† My least favorite animal  (tied for first place with earwigs)

‡ My second least favorite animal

The coolest part was near the end where they brought out some of the animals and let the kids hold them.  Blue-Tongued Skinks are cool.

The boy grinned from ear-to-ear with a big cheesy grin when he got to hold a real-live snake.  He was in awe when a 20 foot python hung down from it’s branch and was 6 inches from the boy’s nose (separated by glass).  Boy and snake stared at each other for minutes and minutes, which is pretty good for an autistic kid.

Meanwhile we were monitored by the Monitor Lizard who stood on it’s hind legs and monitored us as we went through the exhibits.  He did his job well.


I saw the pain clinic people again today.  I have officially given in and reluctantly agreed to higher doses of painkillers.  After months of the worsened state of discomfort from the herniated discs I gave up, especially since the neck and head are killing me (figuratively) and the arm and hand don’t feel all that much different from being scalded with hot water.   The only thing this afternoon that kept me from chopping my arm off at the elbow was the knowledge that it wouldn’t accomplish anything.

No, painkillers don’t help all that much for chronic pain but they take the sharp screaming edges off.

Friday is the meeting with another surgeon, and hopefully this guy will have a better solution.

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I’m off this week.

I figured I would take this week off and I have.   Haven’t felt like doing crap and basically haven’t.

It’s been boring.

I’ll think up something more here but at the moment, all I have is a good one CW sent me.  (found here, at DeMotivatorsSite.com)

If it were mine to do, I would have replaced “shenanigans” with “shite”.

I really have to watch the language. I was absolutely startled with how well the girl can read now. And fast. You don’t have time to get something off the screen before it is too late.

Another h/t to CW, a happy story about a kitteh with either the balls of a tiger or the brains of a flatworm.


I have been playing the new Deus Ex.  It is awesometastic.  Sneaking is fully encouraged and you get take-downs that can be clean or messy, your choice.

Video games do not make you more violent unless you are already completely predisposed to it, otherwise schools would be smoking ruins as 50% of the population there would be killing everything in sight, including the classroom guinea pigs.

Lady, just because I had a gun it didn't mean I was gonna *use* it, so why did you hit the alarm as I passed you by courteously? See? You thought we had problems and now you've gotten yourself trouble, too. I (reap)eat, games do not make one any more violent.

After I've laid waste to all 5000+ people in the building I think I'll come back here and rest for a while. It is so peaceful. Video games do not make one any more violent. They make them peaceful, in fact.

When someone is quietly resting and enjoying a view, you should not try to gun him down in a noisy hail of lead or I he will quietly stab you repeatedly until your body tranquilly slumps to the ground. Video games do not make anyone more violent, they facilitate peace and tranquility.

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Good God I smart today – skull to tail.

You would not believe the amount of effort that goes into putting a show on.  I worked the whole day but with little ones and my physical condition I could not tear down – at some point I had to say “I’m sorry, I just cannot do any more.”  We started at 1:30PM and finally did a last walkthrough around 10pm.

Hey, buddy… did you just see a really bright light?

It was in the 90’s, it was humid, and the sun was oppressive.  I drank eight liters of Dihydrogen Monoxide, a Mountain Spew, three Dr. Poopers (diet), and a Sunny Deelight.  And never had to go use the litterbox once. 

Note:  Trade names have been changed to protect their corporate identities.

Missile Command and the Giant Dandelion of Doom

Did I mention how much effort is involved in this stuff?  There’s unpacking and setup of the tubes, unwrapping of the product, sorting, carting them out, loading strings, taping of buckets (open fuse ends), taping fuses to the frames, eating of pizza, walkthroughs and last minute checks.   I was a giant sponge – trying to learn as much as I possibly could by observation and instruction – I spent the day doing nothing more than having people say “Ok, now do this taping over here” and “help me do that over there”.   It’s one of those situations in life where you don’t want to f*** around because these things are dangerous.  They have classes where you can get certified to do a show and transport the stuff and I plan on doing that.  Until that time I can show up and help out but I couldn’t legally run a show or drive a truck to get it to a show – but helping out is very interesting and plenty.  I think I was exposed to only the scratched the surface of what needs to be done to do all that.

All sorts of rules like “Keep your cigarette on the opposite side of your mouth” and “No, you can’t sort the product next to the campfire.”  Rules almost as onerous as “You have to roll down the window before shooting rats from your pickup at the dump.”

No, there was no campfire and no one up there smokes cigarettes – only crack.

Red Willow

An interesting note:  When you cut yourself and you get the residue – saltpeter and sulfur – in your cuts the stuff burns and stings for like… forever.  Not bad, but enough to remind you that your skin suffered a breach.

But it was worth every bit of sweat, twinges, cut fingers, and screamin’ neck when I got to see my kids with ear-to-ear grins when the 5″, 6″, and 8″ shells started going off.  There’s this fierce out-on-the-bow-of-the-ship feeling you get when they go off.  When Cruel Wife went “ooooh” and “ahhhh” I got a big grin out of that, too.  I kept thinking to my self  “I was part of making that happen.”  Wonderful feeling of satisfaction.

Just part of the finale. Sorry I didn’t orient the camera horizontally.

Remember, the family is sitting as close as is safe to the things and they are going off nearly overhead so the boom is significant.  And when you are up in the enclosure thirty feet away they are setting off tests every now and then and the ground moves under your feet.  Obviously you can’t have family members in that area or where we unpacked and humped stuff around but I was able to leave and hang with the kids every now and then.

Cruel Wife picked me up a cane since I left the one I have at home.  So by the end I was getting around and letting the folks who were actually lighting the stuff off – I can’t move fast enough in my honest assessment – vie for the honors of touching off the 8-shells, and I just bounced from place to place.  Go hug the kids, talk to the wife, talk to the other family folks, drink some more pop.

That’s one thing I really appreciate about this crew.  Almost all of them are AA folks so I felt right at home.  Seriously nice bunch of people.

Wobbled up the hill and got up-close during the show.  Here’s something you don’t get to see every day.

2nd Act – Up close

When a 6″ or 8″ shell goes off at this distance you know something substantial just went off.  What is immediately obvious and subtle is that when they are going off overhead like that the entire surroundings light up but you don’t cast a shadow.  Very cool.

I hobbled over and talked with one of the firefighters, told him that years ago I was a firefighter and how we used to drive a truck out in front of the fire to get spot fires while crews tried to flank the fire, and I asked him how many gallons they carried in their truck.  He looked at me and said “Well, you know how it is – 300 gallons – just enough to kind of piss the fire off.”

We laughed about that one.  It’s only too true.  Any serious fire is going to require more than 300 gallons even with retardant foam.

Faint outline of our firefighter friends in foreground. Happy 4th folks.

Today’s Plan: Move slow, use the cane to steady things out, drink lots of water and pop, and remain drugged throughout.

Happy 4th of July, folks!  Just remember to educate the ignorant about what Independence Day is really about.  We didn’t break away from France for no reason.

Note:  I damn well know it wasn’t the French we broke away from.  It was the Scots.


Here’s all your hopesy-changey at work:

That’s the good news. On the flip side, however, a country whose hallmark has always been a sense of irrepressible optimism is in the grip of unprecedented uncertainty and self-doubt.

You know what bothers me the most about that statement?  If it is actually true, then our true grit, that which made us such a force to be reckoned with, is gone.  I don’t think it is gone except for those who are naturally wired to piss and moan.  Dire straights like this should not be enough to dampen the celebration of Independence Day.  That’s what made the US great – intestinal fortitude – the desire to keep going on because, you know… it’s our “f*** you” attitude.  I’m talking about the attitude that says “We’re not giving up.  We may be beaten down but we’re still not giving up.”

Of course, there are a few things that might be cause for a case of the blues.  Enough to spoil the celebration?  Nah.

Well… maybe a bit bluer, but still not dampened, no.


Could we please start hunting down and incarcerating “Star Chefs” when they do things like suggest Kobe Beef Sliders?

At $40/lb I’m not going to make sliders out of it.  I won’t even eat regular sliders.

In a world that is self-righting sometimes, it is recognized that bacon is the gateway meat.


Oh, boo-hoo.

A Michigan inmate is suing Gov. Rick Snyder and the state over his prison’s ban on pornographic materials, claiming he is being subjected to cruel and unusual punishment, the Detroit News reported.

In a handwritten lawsuit filed June 10 in US District Court in Detroit, Kyle Richards said the porn ban has “been used as a method of ‘psychological warfare’ against prisoners, in order to both destroy the morale of inmates and break the spirit of individuals.”

I want prison to be such a miserable awful place that you never want to go there again, you wuss.  If you come out humbled and broken it’s going to be better for society than if you are strutting like the cock of the walk.

In another heartbreaker, prisoner’s kin suggest that the term “inmate” is stigmatizing.

The family of a coldblooded killer serving 25 years to life in state prison for shooting a man in the head complains he’s being stigmatized — by the use of the term “inmate.”

The label “implies that our brother is locked up for the purpose of mating with other men,” claims Marie Domond in a lawsuit against the state Correctional Services Department.

Oh it gets better.

“It’s something that’s bothered me for a long time,” Marie told The Post. “I couldn’t understand why no one recognized that somebody being labeled an inmate, why they wouldn’t recognize that. To me it just sounded very wrong.

Does it sound as wrong as shooting a guy in the head with a gun?


So much for my new Korean cookbook50 Ways to Wok Your Dog.


I must have a power guantlet… I must have a power guantlet… I must have a power guantlet.


Hey, he died doing what he believed in, so stop it with these kinds of remarks.

The motorcyclist, 55-year-old Philip A. Contos, likely would have survived the accident if he’d been wearing a helmet, state troopers said.

As long as someone signs a paper somewhere where they absolve the rest of us from the responsibility of paying for the rest of their vegetative lives if they are severely brain-damaged, I don’t care if someone wants to wear a weasel instead of a helmet.  Have at, folks.

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We had guests this last week.  It was the first time my dad (Sparky) ever came to Michigan and he brought my stepmom (AngelHeart), with him.  Now, AngelHeart is quite possibly one of the ten most kind people I know.  At first I could not believe that she was for real and in the last year to year and a half I have come to realize that she is truly that kind.

So they came and we visited.

We had a blast.

We BBQ’ed, we went to Henry Ford Museum (Greenfield Village), we got pizza (which dad said was the best pizza he’s had in his entire 80 years of existence), we raided an estate sale, we took walks down the bike path nearby, we caught fireflies (you should have seen my 80 year old stepmom outside running after fireflies),  we took them out for their first coney island grub, we talked, we laughed, and then we parted ways.  I dropped them off at the airport around 1pm today, which was kind of hard because we know that they’ll never be able to come this way again and they do, too.  There’s even a possibility that I might never see him again but then again we may be able to – we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

The kids absolutely adored AngelHeart and Sparky.  They were showing them things, chattering at them, saying all kinds of silly things, and whenever I told them to stop playing video games, watch tv, or get off the computer because they really ought to go hang out with their grandma and granddad they simply said “OK” and did it.  No hassle or complaints at all.

My dad assured me that my liberal stepmom was slowly but surely becoming conservative after a year of living with him – and I rejoiced.  Sparky did worry me a bit last night when he said he didn’t like Sean Hannity so very much and they asked to surf down to the CNN channel where we got to see Beyonce.  I said “Oh yeah, right – like you want to watch this.”

Then AngelHeart says “we’ve seen her on ‘Dancing with the Stars’ and like we like her”.  And they were content to leave the channel there.  Yes, she said “we like her”.  No, I’m not sure if it was DwtS, but it was either that or something of similar ilk.

Honestly I would not know Beyonce if she walked up and gnawed on my butt – I couldn’t even pronounce her name correctly – but the show and format immediately told me that it just isn’t the type of entertainment that I have the patience for (I prefer less ‘I’m a superstar lookit me’ kind of fare).

As I got up in confusion after plummeting to the ground after this world-rocking news my stepmom said “Your brother loves American Idol… he really loves J-Lo”.

In deepest distress I said to Cruel Wife “Yeahbut J-Lo has this HUGE a…. … … nevermind.”   I was shocked.  My brother, SuperTrooper, likes American Idol.  My vision contracted to a point and there was a dull roaring sound in my ears.  I couldn’t feel my extremities and I began to gag on my tongue.  My father likes Beyonce and my brother likes American Idol.

What next?  Mary Poppins becomes a porn star?   Dr. Lector goes vegan?  Cotton candy is made with Splenda™?  Cats become humble?

They saw I was becoming quite agitated and switched the TV back to Hannity.

I will write more later on this post but for now, I’ll end it by saying:

The last four days have been the best present I’ve gotten since Cruel Wife and I were married – when I got a blow-up sheep, the “I Luv Ewe”, at my bachelor party.

I just added the “Luv Ewe” thing to get your attention.  And no, “best present” does not include my kids because they weren’t given to us by a person.  Yes, having my dad come and visit trumped material goods by far.

Yes, I did get an “I Luv Ewe” from my buddies at my bachelor party – the sickos.  It had lipstick, even.  It was revolting.


Yet again, someone takes humor meant for adults and manages to totally miss the context and humor because she’s too preoccupied with herself.

Subtitled “Wherein I Prove that I Need to Get Laid and Chill the F*** Out”.  (Hopefully Samuel L. Jackson can do a reading of another book addressing her issues.

Author Adam Mansbach is undoubtedly the kind of father who heaps love, affection and attention upon his daughter.  [I don’t think she believes that for a second.  – LK]  (He reportedly had the idea to write the book because of his exasperation with her at bedtime.) But sadly, his book accurately portrays the hostile environment in which too many children grow up.

For far too many kids, the obscenities found in Mansbach’s book are a common, everyday household language. Swearing is how parents across the social, educational and economic strata express their disappointments or anxieties, their frustrations and outright anger at their children. Sometimes the biggest bully in the neighborhood lives in the same house you do. Sometimes it’s your parent.

I’m having a hard time seeing how “Go the **** to Sleep” even remotely comes near the ills of child abuse.


If you missed the awesome tempura food pic over at Soylent Green you should run right over there now and catch it.

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Cruel Wife said to my daughter as they were getting ready for her bedtime “Don’t forget to turn off the game controller.”

Sighing loudly, “Oh, okayyyyy…”

“Yes,” I said, “You should always remember to turn off the controller or there’s the possibility that three kittens could die if you don’t.”

“Daaaaa-aaaad, kittens won’t die if I don’t turn off the controller.”

“They might!  Is that really a risk you’re willing to take?” I hollered after her.

Cruel Wife said reproachfully “A girl should always be able to look to her father as being a source of truth and trust…”

I glanced up “Yes, she should.  Sad that she doesn’t, isn’t it?”

Later, as we were reading Harry Potter for her bedtime story she saw a picture of a popping soap bubble on my computer.   “OH!  Print that!  Print that!”

“Girl, if we printed every picture you liked your mom would run out of ink and the printer would die.  Best you just print it on your brain and let your friends at school look in your ear to see ’em.”

“Daaaaa-aaad!  You can’t put pictures on your brain and people can’t look at them!”

In my best dissenting voice I stated, “Oh yes, you can.  Look in my ear.  Get right up close and see.”

She moved within inches of my ear.  “Dad, I can’t see anything.  I can’t see your brain.  No one can see it without an x-ray.”

“Maybe you just can’t see it because I loaned it out or something.”

“Dad, you can’t loan people your brain,” she said in an exasperated tone.

“Well, The Butcher of Lansing asked me just the other day, ‘Can I borrow your brain for a minute?’, so I think it perfectly possible.”

And from the background, with her trademark Betty Rubble laugh, was the sound of Cruel Wife enjoying the conversation…  I live for conversations like that with my daughter.


And now I shall draw your attention to something culinary.

Cool, right?

Known by many names, including hundred-year/thousand-year/millennium egg, a century egg is a preserved chicken, duck or quail egg. A paste made from tea water, clay, lime, ash and salt is packed around the eggs, then they are rolled in rice hulls to keep them from sticking together and left to sit for 3 years.

The result is a greening-brownish egg that smells like flatulence and urine, which is hopefully the only reason why it is called “horse urine eggs” in some Southeast Asian countries.

I found that on a blog entry “18 Stinky Foods from Around the World“.  Sounds scrumptious.

What was peculiar is how many of them I either like and use, or am interested in trying.  A few would make me gag if they were within ten feet of me.  Guess which ones.

This also reminds me… tonight my daughter tried and likes fish sauce by the spoonful (I use Squid brand fish sauce, but to each his own), even straight… she makes me so proud.  She put it on the sesame-ginger noodles I made tonight.  I told her it probably wasn’t the best combination but then again, it’s not a revolting combination either, and gave her the caveat that fish sauce doesn’t taste anything like what most Americans expect food to taste like.  Didn’t faze her a bit.

I will start her on vietnamese food soon then bounce over to korean for bi-bim-bap and chap-chae then back to thai and get her interested in son-in-law eggs (one of my favorites although it takes relatively more time and less people to eat it all).

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With a Bang.

Update: Kids, you need one or more of these.  Brought to my attention by ID10T Killer, one of these is ideal for [insert_purpose_here].

If you click on “add to cart” you will get an interesting I-Understand-and-Absolve page that is incongruous with the whole packaged-to-look-like-a-lightsaber thing.


Update #2:  When you get down to “Entitlement Spending” you are going to weep.  It is graph after graph of illustration of the terrible nature of our entitlement socialist state.  And yes, Bush deserves harsh words for his part, but this is getting out of hand.  Badly.


If one of my kids were to pull this move, they would be pushed out the door and on their own so fast their eyes would spin in their sockets.  The kid had job offers and turned them down because the job wasn’t glorious enough.

Rather than waste early years in dead-end work, he reasoned, he would hold out for a corporate position that would draw on his college training and put him, as he sees it, on the bottom rungs of a career ladder.

Your first job, in this climate?  You take the job you little punk.


Our celebration was actually on the 3rd of July.

I said “Kids!  We’re going to go see and hear some LOUD fireworks!”

They said in unison:  “Oh boy, Dad, you are truly and incontestably the Bestest Dad Ever in the Whole World – EVER – and WE MEAN IT!”

No, they did not say that.  They are 7 and 4 years old.  Only in my mind could they say that.

Being kind of young they didn’t grasp the significance of the event.

Our destination was over an hour away.  We needed to be there by 7pm.

We started packing at 5:30pm and were on the road by 5:50pm.

We had:  four lawn chairs, one lawn table, a cooler filled with ice, hotdogs for the cooler, mustard and ketchup, a few drinks on the way, paper plates, two stuffed animals, two sleeping bags, a small butane burner, a frying pan, eight pounds of candy, 6 liters of soda in big bottles, four earmuff style hearing protectors, five fuzzy-foamy squeeze into the ear earplugs, two kids, Cruel Wife, and Myself.

We drove to Jackson.  Now, I need to point out something about Michigan roads.  They suck and blow at the same time.  I had already overdone it by going to the local landfill with a neighbor (carting off 900 lbs of my junk – even with him doing a lot of heavy lifting) and then doing additional cleanup on my garage.  So, “armed” with narcotics and a muscle relaxant – and continuously punished by the roads, thereby keeping me maximally alert (fear not) – we arrived in Jackson and were at the base of the hill that we had aimed for at 7:04pm.

We let ourselves in and drove up the hill (to the envy of thousands of peasants parked below) and met up with my friend who I will call Deranged Bomber.   I had never met his wife.  We got out of the Jeep and asked this lady where we could find Deranged Bomber and she said “Hi, I’m his wife, PsychoChick!”  (she earned my respect and that particular name for her because she was totally into this fireworks stuff, too)

We were then led to PsychoChick’s extended family who welcomed us as if we were their family – giving us hotdog buns, the use of their grill, tongs to turn our dogs, a spot to park our stuff, and lots of understanding for kids.  By the time we left we were just amazed at their hospitality, which frankly I have come to never expect in Michigan.

Deranged Bomber gave me the tour of the fireworks ranging from the 3″ diameter jobs all the way up to the 8″ ones that use a pound of black powder to launch.  Not a small show, this was 24 minutes of non-stop boom-boom.

The kids were wild apes (apologies to wild apes everywhere) and ran for all they were worth.  Frankenboy ran down the hill at top speed even after I yelled at him to stop and turn around.  So I ran after him.  When I had made up half the distance he stopped, turned around to look at me, grinned… and kept going.

Luckily the narcotics were still in effect.  I ran him down and frog-marched him back up the hill, cursing the fact that genetics are a powerful thing and that he got mine.

Another family handed my kids some glow-sticks so they spent time trying to attract fireflies by swinging them all around on strings.   Their choice of location and technique of said glow-stick spinning was physically hazardous to everyone within about 15 feet so I had to quite forcefully let them know that they needed to be more cautious.

Seeing my little girl wilt at the rebuke I tried misdirection… I told Girlhead “You know sweetie, I gotta say… if I were a firefly and I was watching you spin that thing around I’d be all over that.”   I wanted to say “If I were a firefly. undomesticated equines could not induce me to leave” but I figured that would go way way over her head.  That little bit of encouragement spurred both kids to furiously spinning even faster, trying to attract a great many fireflies.

Girlhead wanted to find the latrine one more time so we went.  As we were going back I had her in my arms and she was looking in the direction of the fireworks.  Her face lit up in several different senses of the word and we heard and felt this “**BOOM**”.  She had a grin from ear to ear.  We stood there, transfixed as bursts went off over our heads.  Being that close to them is a rush.  Really really.  We’re talking 100-150 feet.

The only thing I’ve heard louder was an explosion on a data collection for work (planned and intentional boom-boom to train forensics people).  That one was almost felt more than heard and you felt it all through your body – in your chest kind of sensation.

So we started on the trip back off to our chairs, two steps at a time, and she sat on my lap as we watched the fireworks show.

Easily the best day I’ve had in 15 years in spite of ending it on a note of very real severe pain and the next three days.  All things considered it was worth every minute to sit there with my little girl on my lap as we both went “OOOOH!”  She kept saying “Oh THAT one is my FAVORITE!” over and over again.

And Deranged Bomber asked if I’d be interested in getting certified and doing that sort of thing… I said “HELL YEAH!”

Note:  PsychoChick and Deranged Bomber are totally different from what their names imply.  I picked those names for theatrical effect.

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Hope you have a fantastic day today – just make sure at least once you think about the guts it took our forefathers (and ‘mothers) to say to England: “No more, please”  (Not the they did not say “No mas, por favor.”  Oh, maybe some of them said “Non, sil vous plait” or my german ancestors “No more, bitte!”)

I have a friend that does fireworks shows – we’re talking 8″ diameter monsters with a launching charge of 1lb of black powder.   We were just a few hundred feet of the launch zone with the familes of the guys doing the launches.  It’s a long and fun stoy that I’ll tell in a few hours.

I spent so much time hunting down my kids – running after them, swinging them, rolling them up in their sleeping bags and sitting on them – well, I’m paying the steep price that my neck demands.  I was already getting gimped because of the shop cleaning and garbage dump trip yesterday but… well, now I’m sitting here and only moving my fingers, nothing more.

Last night was the most fun I’ve had in fifteen years.

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