Thursday, May 31, 2007

What the heck? Part 2

Have you seen these poor parents who met the Pope in hopes of getting their abducted child returned to them. I pray for them and hope the child is returned so that Protective Services can take her away!!!! For drying out loud the kid was 4 and in a strange country and these parents left her AND HER YOUNGER BROTHERS in a hotel room so they could enjoy a quiet dinner!! What the heck! Why is everyone smoothing over this fact when they talk about the story. It is people like this that make me support a Parent License!! What idiot leaves their 4 year old in a hotel room so they can eat! I remember undoing all the straps and contraptions in my sons car seat and taking him out so I can pay the gas attendant at the gas station (yes there was a time that one had to go in and pay, there was no pay at the pump). I would unstrap the boy, walk inside the 15 feet and tell the guy I wanted $10 on pump 5 and then put the boy back in the car and strap him up and then pump gas.

I feel sorry for these people, I truly do, this is my worst nightmare as a parent. But then again I do not think I would leave my 4 year old home alone so I can grab a movie with the wife...

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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

What the heck?!!?!?!?!??!

I start my day with a workout (usually) and then when I get home I jump online and do some quick browsing. Visit my blog reads, baseball scores, email and calendar. At the end if I have time I run to the funny link sites, the quick links of Miss America falling on her butt, skaters wiping out, that cat rolled up in the tarp at the baseball game getting flung out and occasionally some dirty clip. I admit I click on them sometimes, I try not to as this is a shared computer with my son and the "dirty" sites like to dump tons of spyware etc on your PC. But I see a link that says Drunk College Girls at Party, thinking flashing ala New Orleans, instead it is two girls and one guy at a party. They are totally naked and going at it. Meanwhile there are DOZENS of people all standing in a circle around them at some frat party. The camera moves from the "action' to the viewers and someone is asking questions, at one point one of the kids says, don't film me if my mother saw this she would shit. I turn it off and think to myself, what the hell is going on at college????? I mean I was wild there and drank and did things that college kids do, but I never got naked in front of all my friends and had sex with two women. What the heck is going on that this generation thinks that this is fine behaviour. What of the girls in the video, these are not adult actresses they are regular college students. When they go for a summer internship and some says, hey I say you on Dump-a-link doing some guy. What of the school these people go to, I saw Greek letters and college shirts, do they have a responsibility of what is going on on their campus. What of the parents of these kids. I am of the age where I have friends with college aged kids. While at a dinner table with a friend I blurt out, Hey Chuck I saw you daughter going down on some guy on YouTube. Sure I am the hypocrite that clicked on the link and watched some of it, but what the hell people!!!!! I understand the niche of Adult Movies and the people who make them know what they are into but these are just normal kids at college. What gave them the idea that is was OK to strip naked in front of 40 people and have sex??? Sometimes I really fear for the future...

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Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day 2007

It is to remember the fallen of this great Country of ours. It is to remember that these United States still exist because of the dedication and sacrifice of 1% of our population. It is to remember and give thanks that these men and women were there so we might be here.

One man spoke better on the field of a great battle. One man spoke better on the need to continue on with what these men (and women) gave their life for. These are that man's words.

Gettysburg Address

Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Who's That Knocking....

The men are here to replace the roof and when I got back from working out they were in place and working hard. Now I am sitting on the PC for a few minutes and all I hear is someone knocking on the roof. BANG BANG BANG BANG, the dog is going crazy thinking someone is at the door. She finally calmed down, thank God!

Heroes ended last night. Since you might not have watched it, no spoilers. I will say however that this was one of the best shows in a long time. Fantastic writing, great acting and a story that, while the whole family can follow it, did not dumb it down like so many other shows. STICK AROUND to the very end. The show ends and then they start Season Two so beware! We will be getting the DVD on this one and following it during the off season on line. IF you missed it, you missed the best show of the year, so pick it up when the DVD comes out or look for it on SciFi Channel. Great stuff!

The boy is turning into the man. He is becoming what we thought he would be. He has his hiccups but who didn't at that age. We are keeping the fingers crossed for a good summer. I can see my wife's heart break every time he does something "grown up" and she realizes he is not that 9 year old who would come back to mommy for everything.

PS David Bowie fans check THIS out.....

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Monday, May 21, 2007


Speaking of reading in the last post, here are 16 Must-Read SF/F Classics for Teenage Boys

Literary Compass has compiled a list of 30 Must-Read Classics for Teenage Boys. Making the cut is a nice selection of 16 genre fiction titles:

  1. Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury
  2. Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury
  3. The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
  4. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  5. The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury
  6. Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  7. The Belgariad by David Eddings
  8. Animal Farm by George Orwell
  9. The Once and Future King by T.H. White
  10. The Book of the Dun Cow by Walter Wangerin, Jr.
  11. Flatland by Edwin Abbott
  12. The Foundation Series by Isaac Asimov
  13. The Caves of Steel by Isaac Asimov
  14. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
  15. The Lost World by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  16. Time and Again by Jack Finney
Titles in ITALICS are ones I have read...

The Countdown Begins...

This is the time for countdowns. The countdown to the Indy 500 (biggest TV day for us at work), the countdown to the last day of school, the countdown to what the heck are we doing with our boy this summer?

The weekend was fantastic. We slept in on Saturday, did some housework and yard work and then just hung out. It is tough to drive anywhere with gas being 3.44 a gallon out here. So it is nice to just hang around the house. We sat outside, grilled, played some ball and just sat and read. The boy has some new friends and is going beyond the neighborhood to 'hang out'. I get a little nervous but then again I was roaming NYC when I was 14 so I guess I can relax if he is 2-3 blocks away.

I need to get organized in the office. I have picked up some good tips from various websites and blogs but I need to actually do them to finally get out from the tower of paper and filing that needs to be done. We have a busy week with baseball and scouts almost every night and with TV wrapping up it will be nice not to have anything going on in the evening. We watched Flags of Our Fathers the other night. WOW, more than a war movie it is a look at how these men had to deal with being looked at as heroes when they themselves did not think they deserved it. Very powerful stuff. I know I talked of this before but my God, when we went to war these men (and women) dropped everything and headed overseas and gave there all and then came back and jumped right back into their lives and created the American we destroyed these past 20 years. Well worth the watch and we look forward to the mirror piece Letters From Iwo Jima for the Japanese view...

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Alone Time

It is Saturday morning and the house is empty. The boy is off hiking in the wilderness for the weekend and the wife left early to get to work so she can be home by noon. That leaves me to just hang out in the underwear listening to Bob Seger!

I think I will play some video games today waiting for the wife to come home. I still have a PC game I got for Christmas that is still in its original wrapper so maybe I'll install it.

All I want to do this weekend is mow my lawn and then enjoy the day. The house is clean, the bills are paid, we can shop this afternoon and then are all done! It will be very nice to just relax on the weekend. I have a few projects I want to do (compost box in the back yard, edge the lawn) but they can wait, no rush.

School is quickly coming to an end. The boy sis make some steps in getting the grades up. All except English in which he does not like the teacher and the entire semester is based on one book. We shall see what happens.

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Thursday, May 17, 2007


This weekend we went to see Spam-a-lot. Each year my parents give us a pair of tickets for my birthday to a Broadway show that is playing in town, in order to add a little culture to our lives. Sometimes it is one I have seen on Broadway and loved (Le Mis') or one they thought we would like but was HORRIBLE (Moving Out). But this time it was one we both wanted to see and were both looking forward to. So we went out to a nice dinner, took in some ice cream and then headed to the theater.

First off it was PACKED. We got there an hour early to park and the lot we used was almost full (we just made it in). Once inside it was hot and stuffy as hundreds of people waited around for the doors to open. They opened 10 minutes before curtain and then the play started late as they were still waiting for people to come in. Once the play started however, it was like everyone else disappeared. Our seats were fantastic, 4th row center, and the play and hilarious! If you are a Monty Python fan you would love it. Even if you have never seen a Flying Circus or movie (play is based on Holy Grail) you will laugh your ass off. Before the first act was over the wife was in tears she was laughing so hard and I swear I think the woman next to me wet herself!!!

Afterwards, drinks and bed. It was a fantastic night out with the wife and a great play to boot. I would see this show again in a heart beat! If it is in your town, run do not walk to the theater and get tickets. It is not really for the young, although there were some kids there. It is English humour so if Benny Hill girls make you uncomfortable then make the kids cover their eyes once or twice if you take them...


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

CSI: Indy

I awoke at 2:30am thinking my wife was having a coughing fit. All was quiet in the house and I fell back asleep. When I got up for good at 7am and let the boy out for school I noticed that the front door was busted. The door was closed but the wood strip were one would latch the door close was splintered and there was a hole in the wall behind the door where the knob would hit. I had locked the door at midnight and everything was fine. Looking at the outside of the door I noticed some footprints square in the middle. I then realized that the coughing fit that woke me was probably the dog barking when the door was kicked open.

I called the police and checked the house. Nothing was missing. The dog sleeps on the stairs landing and it is near the front door. Best we can guess is someone kicked in the door but heard the dog barking and closed it quick (so the dog would not follow) and ran. This is the first "break in" attempt in our area in some time and one officer suggested it might have been a drunk. He has seen many a drunk person banging on locked doors trying to get into "their' house when it is not. The officers took the report and some pictures (I helped with my ruler next to the hole in the wall) and then left. I took some screws to the wood and fixed the door so that it closes tight and locks. I now have to call the insurance company and see what is covered in replacing the front door.


Monday, May 14, 2007

The Yau Experience.

Survivor is done for another season. My 2nd favorite won and my favorite Survivor got screwed!!! I am a big Yau-man fan. I thought he played the game incredibly! This was hands down one of the best Survivor seasons EVER!!! Yau absolutely dominated the season. In the car challenge he made a deal with "Dreamz", the truck for the immunity idol IF he wins it in the final four. He did but did not hand it over. And then lost the million. Earl did a bang up job all season and not once did someone vote for him. Congrats!

An open letter to Dreamz,

Dear Dreamz,

You had a chance to make a difference. You made a deal, shook on it, even swore to God you would honor it. When then time came you folded. You went back on your word and claimed you were playing a game. Watching you weep after that decision showed me you were not "playing the game". The moment you kept the idol for yourself you had NO CHANCE of winning the jury, could you nit see that or did the shot at a million blind you. Boo was right in going after you and then Jeff at the reunion did the same but you stuck to your lame story.

You had a chance to make a difference. You could have been the Survivor guy who gave up a shot at a million to honor his word. You could have been on tour, on book shelves and Oprah as an example of honor and integrity. You could have been a roll model for others outside your sphere of life. You could have done the circuit and talked to schools and troubled kids, making a difference. But you didn't do what was right.

I am sure your son looks up to you and I am sure you explained the situation and he understands and looks at you like all sons should look at their fathers. But how would he look at you if you made the right choice and honored you deal and stood up like a man and put that idol on Yau's neck. THAT would have been something to be proud of. Too bad.


Sunday, May 13, 2007

You are The Devil

Materiality. Material Force. Material temptation; sometimes obsession

The Devil is often a great card for business success; hard work and ambition.

Perhaps the most misunderstood of all the major arcana, the Devil is not really "Satan" at all, but Pan the half-goat nature god and/or Dionysius. These are gods of pleasure and abandon, of wild behavior and unbridled desires. This is a card about ambitions; it is also synonymous with temptation and addiction. On the flip side, however, the card can be a warning to someone who is too restrained, someone who never allows themselves to get passionate or messy or wild - or ambitious. This, too, is a form of enslavement. As a person, the Devil can stand for a man of money or erotic power, aggressive, controlling, or just persuasive. This is not to say a bad man, but certainly a powerful man who is hard to resist. The important thing is to remember that any chain is freely worn. In most cases, you are enslaved only because you allow it.

What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Razor...

Like one of my regular reads (Brent) my son is of that age where things are growing on the body. Now I am a hairy man. I have had a mustache since 1988. I shaved it off once in the mid 90's and my son freaked out because he did not know who I was (he was 5). It grew back quickly and I have had it ever since.

Now my son seems to want to join in the family tradition. Unfortunately it is that "I am 14 and just able to grow a little hair" type of mustache. So this past week I went and bought the boy some disposable razors. Now when the wife saw them in the shopping cart I thought she would faint. We are old enough to have a child who needs a razor. The package is sitting on the bathroom sink waiting for me to show him how it is done without killing himself.

Well I have 2 problems. One is that when I do show him, it will be official and I will be the father of a boy that shaves (shudder). The other is that I am not too sure I am the man for this. Shaving the upper lip is a tricky situation and except for one time in 1998 I have not done it in almost 20 years. I am sure we will all be fine. He will be happy to be rid of that awkward stash, I will pass on a father/son rite and we can both tease the wife about how old she is to have a shaving son!!!!!!!


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Works For Me Wednesday

Works For Me Wednesday:

My memory has tons of holes. I forget names and dates and phone numbers all the time. I have yet to memorize my folks new number (they have had it for 2 years). There is too much OTHER stuff in my head that I forget things easily. TO combat this the wife got my a CSR device (Can't Remember S**t) for Christmas. I have finally started using it (I know it is May but I forget about it). Anyway the "CSR device" is actually a small digital recorder. It has 4 "folders" to store comments in. I have them broken up into FAMILY, WORK, SCOUTS, ME. I carry it with me all the time and when something comes up that I need to do, IE pick up dog food, make tape for meeting, or mail card to friend. Then in the morning before I leave for work I check the recordings to make sure I was not forgetting anything. So far so good...

Works for me.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Tuesday's With Bryan

Welcome back...

Quick Hits:
The boy took a bat to the head yesterday at practice. It was a swing stick bat but it did put a nice slice in the scalp that did bleed for awhile. He seems fine but will have a small scar on the head. It wouldn't be baseball season without him getting whacked.

The neighbor is building the fence I knocked over. I bought wood for it last week and was out there getting ready when the boyfriend came over and said he wanted cedar instead of the pressure treated I had. I figured sure, I knocked it down I will replace it. He then said I could just buy the wood and he would build it "his way". Even better for me. He's a little weird, wouldn't figure my neighbor falling for someone like him...oh well to each their own.

Book Report: Just finished The Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn yesterday. For those not in the know it is the story of Mr. Kahn and his life with the Brooklyn Dodgers. As a boy in Brooklyn he grew up within shouting distant of Ebbett's Field. Then as a young man he was a sports writer that covered the Dodgers and then as an older man he went back to visit the heroes of his youth. These were the Dodgers of Jackie Robinson and Pee Wee Reese, Duke Snider, Carl Erskine, et al. It is incredible to see the dynamic between players and writers at that time. Then to see what the "Best Team in Baseball", a team that dominated baseball for a decade, broke the color barrier and won a World Series; becomes after20 years. All were out of baseball (except Gil Hodges) and all were working hard to make ends meet. People forget that the players of yesteryear were paid nothing and had no fall back or had the free agent option. It is a fantastic look at one of the greatest teams in baseball history and what they put up with as the first integrated baseball team. I highly recommend it! Check out my Book Page at Ex Libris...

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Monday, May 07, 2007

Working Them Angels...

Once again the weekend is gone in a blink! Had to work overtime, had a baseball game (we won), mowed the lawn, grilled ribs, all the while nursing my finger as it withers on my hand.

So to update and expand. Apparently what seemed to be a blood clot turns out to be a shredded ligament. Right under the knuckle of my right pinkie I recently got a small round black bump. Looked like a blocked vein. My doctor sent me to the ER very quickly. Turns out that the ligament that runs from joint to joint is shredding and that little black bump is the shredded part all balled up. Eventually my finger will curl like making a pinkie swear and stay like that. Right now it feels the most comfortable when bent over and if I keep it straight for a long time I get a numbness down the right side of my right hand. I have to see a hand surgeon to get it fixed, however I use my pinkie and all my fingers for work (as a button pusher says the wife) and May is not only sweeps but also the Indy 500 so I cannot afford any down time till June. We shall see how this goes.

When does a couple stop being two people and become one. MY wife and I have been with each other a long time (married 14 years, known her for 19 years). Sometimes we have the same thought at the same time. Something will come on the radio or TV and I would chuckle after a moment and then the wife will look at me and tell me exactly what I was chuckling about in my head. I will call her cell just to have my phone beep as I put it to my ear and see call waiting from her. Not so much finish each others thoughts but know them before they take voice. The other day we were lazy and just laid in bed for a while. The boy had a sleep over and was already moving about but we just lounged in bed and talked. It is weird to think of the time we have spent together. I am a little shy of 40 now but I still see myself as that 25 year old. I am off by 15 years, but I do not feel it (most of the time).


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Saturday, May 05, 2007

Rapid Fire

Mini Marathon is OVER, hip hip, oh you get it!

Ran to ER yesterday for finger, doctor said it might be blood clot, turns out I have a frayed ligament in my finger. Very common says the ER doc. I need surgery for eventually my pinkie will stop working and just lock in one position, forever. Great.

Boy's team won today. Nice!

Wife mad as I yelled at her after I mowed the lawn and then came in expecting her to have the kitchen done but she took a nap instead. No big deal but it rained and I was soaked and I only got the front finished and then I came in and the lunch mess was still on the table. Never said I was the perfect husband, but very close ;-)

Friday, May 04, 2007


What a week. And it is not over yet. I still have to work our 500 Mini-marathon tomorrow. I direct it from the Finish Line. We are it live from start to finish and then rebroadcast it twice over the weekend. It is a huge project but in the end very worthwhile.

I am grumpy because my finger hurts. I have a little bump on the inside knuckle of my right pinkie. It is like the vein is blocked, I have been able to put a little pressure on it and it would flatten out and I could feel it unclog. But then it would fill up again. Now it is stiff and sore, maybe because I spent yesterday trying to flatten it out to no avail. If it does not get any better it is off to the doctor. It was a come and go issue for years now it is a come and stay issue. Hurts like a mother.

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Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Random Thoughts

Got a comment on yesterday's rant. Sure it is not right to yell like a maniac at your child and definitely not use profanity. However, at 13 this kid should be able to take a good tongue lashing. I heard nothing wrong in Mr. Baldwin's message. Sure some of it was aimed at the ex but this was obviously stewing for some time and finally it was said that this type of behaviour was unacceptable! No matter what was happening with the parents, he is still the father and should be listened to. After telling the boy 4 times to do something and each time it is not done you will hear a GET YOUR ASS IN HERE AND FINISH THIS...NOW!!!! in my house. We have a deal in my house, no ranting and raving, we talk like adults about an issue. And adults do not sugar coat things, I lay it out for the boy and sometimes the truth is ugly but better he is prepared for life then have it slap him in the face one day unprepared....

Rush: The new album is out yesterday, Snakes and Arrows. The wife got it for me for my birthday. I am listening to it now and getting ready for the tour this summer. Great stuff!!!

Yankees: we are snake bit as they say. Our number 1 prospect pitching a no-hitter and then goes down for 46 weeks. We can not catch a break!

Heroes: Is there a better show on TV geared towards the teen aged family? It has everything for mom and dad and teen aged son! Story, acting, direction...absolutely awesome. If you are not watching you are missing the best show on network TV!!!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Tuesday's With Bryan

Welcome back to Tuesday's With Bryan, and welcome to May!!!

Thank You Mr. Baldwin: Finally someone stands up and shows us what REAL parenting is like. It is not all touchy feelie, let's talk and we'll do better next time champ. Sometimes it is yelling and screaming and tough love. While the sins of the parents should not fall on the children I believe that Mr. Baldwin's "outburst" was due in part to the messy divorce. The other part was that his daughter was a selfish little pig. Hate him or love him or loath him he is still the father and when he says jump she says how high. Children have too much freedom and way too much leeway (I too am guilty of this) and if more kids were sat down and told the raw truth maybe there would be less of everything that is wrong with American and more that is right. Maybe if told they are self-centered little brats they will wake up and join the community. Last week's My Name Is Earl touched on this in a humorous way. Earl went back to school to find the teachers he tormented as a child broken. The kids were so over the top now with the knowledge that teachers and parents have no power. Earl helped them take back control. At one point a car prank turns into a car bomb and the kids realize that their behaviour is no joke and suddenly children are paying attention in class and one even brings an apple to teacher (all for fear that the teachers are out to get them). While that is a bit extreme (and was quite funny) this is the wake up call today's youth needs. Life is no joke and sooner rather than later life will hit you like a ton of bricks. So bravo Mr. Baldwin for waking up America, you are a parent not a best friend or a maid or a chauffeur, it is your responsibility to instill in your child a compass that will help point them in the right direction in life. And if a nice blast of cold reality is needed then give it barefaced, not sugar coated but naked right there in their face.