I was writing a post about robots, and I realized that I haven’t properly introduced the ‘cast of characters’ of my blog. The robots will have to wait. Over the next week or so, I’ll be introducing the people in my life that make their way into my blog, cataloged on the ‘Cast’ page that I will create starting with tomorrow’s post.

I’ll start with my beautiful wife.

Who, incidentally, just had a route canal today. She went in for fillings and the dentist found more serious problems going on in her lovely mouth which required immediate attention. Ow. I stayed home babysitting our girls, dropping off and picking up the three-year-old from preschool, and hanging out with the one-year-old playing Keep the Baby On The Changing Table While Changing Her Diaper (I almost lost), Don’t Lie On the Puppy, and Get Incredibly Dirty In Thirty Seconds Flat. Ah, fun games. BW (beautiful wife) is really glad that the one-year-old and I have finally established a solid connection. It was harder to bond with her as a breast-feeder – it was difficult to juxtapose myself between her and the source of all life and goodness. Spending time alone with her has definitely helped me get closer to her.

Who, incidentally, is STANDING NOW! Yay! She’s been pulling herself up for a while now, but she’s actually able to stand up from a sitting position. Sometimes she’ll stand up and forget she’s standing, and start playing games. She’s very careful to sit back down when she’s done, and we know she’s going to start walking any day. BW got a shot of her yesterday at the park, doing her thing.

It is polite, or good blogging etiquette to have a cast? Should I (anonymously) introduce the people in my blog? I have no idea. I can’t seem to find the daddy blog rulebook anywhere. Most of the people in my life are my immediate family, our pets, and a few fictional characters who may or may not be introduced. I guess I’ll just go with it; if the internets doesn’t scream at me to stop, I’ll introduce all the people and animals in my little life to you :).

But no robots. Yet.


Tomorrow the World Will be Ready

Panda (the 5-year-old) has been taking to getting herself dressed in the morning before school, and she breezed into our bedroom this morning in an outfit that prompted a ‘Chic!’ from BW.

[Note: ‘chic’ in German is pronounced ‘shick’ (like Shick-Shadle Hospital – only 10 days, plus a couple of weekend follow-ups to get that nasty monkey off your back), and is used to describe an outfit that looks flattering or cool on a person. They use this term more often than we use it, and it applies to children as well as adults.]

Panda stood next to our bed, looking at BW’s bedside lamp through das Kronjuwel of her outfit: sunglasses. She then conducted an informal application of the Scientific Method:

Panda: Hey, the light doesn’t look right.
BW: Really? Why is that?
Panda: Hmmm. It looks right when I take off the glasses.
BW: Uh huh. What if you put them back on?
Panda: It looks wrong again!
Me: So what do the sunglasses do?
Panda: Make me look cool!

At the bus stop, I waited until the bus was lumbering down the street before quickly cleaning breakfast off her face, and snagging the shades in the process.

Panda: Hey, I was going to wear those to school!
Me: Sorry kiddo, the world isn’t ready for that much cool!


It’s official – I’ve got a job. I start on Tuesday. I’ll be working for a contractor for a large software developer, which has an office about 30 miles from where we live. While I’m not looking forward to the commute, I am definitely looking forward to regular income, and paying the bills and stuff. The company has strict policies about blogging, so I’m not sure what I can blog about. The NDA I signed said something like, “If you have questions about the content of a blog post, you probably shouldn’t post it,” or something like that. So what can I blog about now? Is everything off limits? I need some kind of rubric for determining what’s still valid content for my blog. Like this:

  • Do not post any content having the words Jar Jar Binks anywhere in the post. Actively hunt down other blog posts with these words and try to delete them.
  • Do not post any technical content, or parenting content that has to do with robots (e.g., robotic nannies, automated changing tables, or child robots, like Astro Boy).
  • Do not post anything about rainbows. Even if they are double rainbows.
  • OK to post about left-handedness, peanut butter (generic), unicorns, and parental opinions as they relate to non sequiturs.

That makes tomorrow’s blog post pretty easy:

Opinion: left-handed unicorns in the peanut butter again? That’s OK with me…

This week I’ve been trying to finish up the various projects I’ve been working on. I’m also spending more focused time with the girls. It’s funny how the prospect of leaving makes me evaluate what’s important to me: I’m really going to miss being here every day. For two years, I’ve been here every morning. Now, I will have left long before the girls get out of bed. I’ll miss the routine we’ve built (cacao, feeding the dogs, walking Panda to the bus stop).

To my readers who have encouraged me these last few months, thank you. Your words have helped me more than I can express. This has been a difficult time for all of us here (Beautiful Wife included), and knowing that there are people out there pulling for us, has kicked my ass on more than one occasion. I’ll let you know how the job goes, without disclosing any real information.

Alltop – I’m in!

For those of you that commented on my last post, please indulge me today. I know I promised you some introductions, and I WILL get to them, tomorrow at the latest. Please, please stop flooding me with comments on this! I don’t know how to do the ‘comments closed’ thing in WordPress, and I’m too lazy tonight to figure it out.

I joined Alltop! So cool! And, get this, my listing is only 1 row ‘below the fold’!! How cool is that? FYI, ‘below the fold’ is an old printing term applied to newspapers. If your ad or article was below the half of the paper that the main headline was on, you were ‘below the fold’. My monitor doesn’t fold, but I imagine that in the computer context, it means below the page that is visible. On your monitor. At the time.

I have heterochromia, or more accurately, sectoral heterochromia, which is much less common. Heterochromia is the pigmentation anomaly that causes Siberian Huskies to have different colored eyes. My childhood neighbor had a Husky with one white and one blue eye. Kinda weird. According to wikipedia, my company includes Christopher Walken. Woot!

How else am I special? Statistically? OK, since you asked:

  • I’m left handed (90% of people are right handed).
  • I don’t have any wisdom teeth, and never did. My dentist said that was one in a million.
  • I was adopted. And, the middle child. Between two non-adopted siblings.
  • I juggle. Balls and clubs, tricks with both. That’s kind of rare, right? I’m the only one in my family…
  • I’m married to the most beautiful woman, and best mother, in the world. That makes me one in 6.5 billion

Out! LED Flashlight Dispenser

[Job update: background check has not been completed yet so I’m still waiting to hear final confirmation on my job. However, my contracting agency has assured me that, barring something unforeseen (I robbed a bank, and didn’t tell them about it because I forgot), I will be reporting to work in a couple of weeks. I should hear something final in a day or two. I hope… ]

We love our dogs. Sawyer (named for the character on Lost) is a Lab mix, and Josie (Jo-Jo) is our King Charles Spaniel (a beautiful gift from Oma). My job is to feed and clean up after our canine friends, and maybe provide them with some additional exercise every once in a while. BW used to take them to the dog park, but Sawyer has some kind of chronic injury to his hindquarters that we don’t have a handle on quite yet, so short walks through our neighborhood is all we try.

Last night, we got the kind of weather forecast I was expecting: dark, with scattered light toward morning. If you’re like me, you dread the thought of going outside in the dark, while it’s freezing cold, to walk your dog who may poop right on the street. To even think about doing this, you’d want a good LED flashlight, some easily accessible plastic bags to pick up any poo, and a nice warm jacket. Enter the Out! LED Flashlight Dispenser and Pick-up Bags:

The Out! LED Flashlight Dispenser and Pick-up Bags is a compact unit that attaches to your dog’s leash, providing you (the designated dog-walker) with a super-bright LED flashlight, AND, convenient bags for picking up your dogs’ gifts to the world. Assembly of this tool is super-easy – just remove it from the package, open it by removing the flashlight (it just unscrews), and ‘starting’ the plastic bags by taking off the tape and pulling the first bag through the slot on the side of the dispenser.

Screw the flashlight back onto the dispenser (there are guide marks on the flashlight and the dispenser that show you where to line it up), and then attach it to your leash with the handy carabiner.

And now, you are ready to walk your dog!

After a little convincing, Sawyer was totally up for a little walk. I couldn’t find Jo-Jo’s leash, so I left her at the house. The LED flashlight is bright, and stayed attached to the leash without any trouble.

Sawyer didn’t poop, so I’m saving you that image, but the bags are thick enough to handle dog waste and disposal. This gadget worked well, and if we lived in a city in a condo where walking the dogs was mandatory every day, I would buy one of these, no question.