this thing is still about things

Category Archives: news



Let me add a molecule to the ocean of thoughts regarding Mr. Roger Ebert.

I grew up with Siskel and Ebert.  I often disliked him.  When I was young, I thought he was old and dumb.  Since I became not young, I thought he was old, but no longer dumb. (Surely it was he that gained wisdom over the years!)  Often smart, often with good taste, occasionally disagreeable.  Always, at the very least, with passion and intelligence behind his words.  His essay here, published in his book Life Itself: A Memoir, brings me to tears and makes me weep as if I knew him personally.  As if we were going to meet up this weekend to watch a movie and argue about it.

Good journey, Mr. Ebert.  You will be very missed.

Endless Days


The past few days have been cold, gray and rainy.  Perfect fall weather if this happened to be fall.   The nights are inky black.  Driving at night lately has been a test of my patience with all the rain and impossible visibility.  I don’t want to discuss this at all, but I feel it would be remiss to ignore it: 

More often than not, I prefer that my kids watch the news with me.  I explain things to them in a way that children can understand.  It’s an opportunity to understand things like the weather and to a more shielded degree what police and firefighters do.  But then things happen and I have to turn the TV off.

Gray, rainy days are best supplemented by sitting together on the couch or in my bed watching cartoons and cuddling.  I have an inherent need to touch and hold the people close to me at times like these.  Play blocks and kitchen.  Read books.  Chase the dog and make cookies.  Yes, even when I play Warcraft, my son cuddles up next to me and watches.

This is an undead death knight. Duh.

Saturday night, I fell asleep early, maybe 11 or midnight, and woke up at 4 AM.  So much for sleeping early.  The Mr. woke up and I kept bugging him until he was totally awake.  We laid in bed and talked and for hours and eventually played around on the computer.  Right about when he wanted to go back to sleep at 7, I made puppy dog eyes because I wanted to go out for breakfast with the family.  It was a happy and exciting morning for the kids and for me because we see Dad at breakfast an average of once per week.

So, even in the rainy gloom of a Sunday morning, everyone was happy.  And then on the way home I noticed all the flags at half staff and just lost my shit.  I can insulate myself from the world only so much.  Despite all of the silliness, immaturity and self proclaimed childishness, I am still an adult and a parent.  A parent with a child nearly the same age as those murdered in Newtown.  A parent with a child that could be in a classroom where the shooter visited.

From someone that I’ve known since we were 4 years old.

I don’t really have words to describe this.  There is a saying that if a person loses a spouse they are called a widow or a widower.  If a child loses his parents, he becomes an orphan.  But there’s no real word to describe what a parent is after they lose a child.  It’s something that I cannot imagine.  These are the thoughts that are rolling around my head now, so close to Christmas.  Life goes on for everyone else, but it amazes me to no end that life will go on for anyone in that town.  People are more resilient than they should ever need to be.

More silliness later, as always.



I love shrimp.  I had shrimp for dinner just last night and it was delicious.  This, sir, is no shrimp:

Imagine it in your mouth. IMAGINE IT.

After reading this and this I’ve decided to never leave the house again.  I mean, c’mon New Zealand, really?

For the record, I’m not usually squeamish.  I will tell you a story that will give you a minor insight to my childhood:

My two Cocker Spaniels had puppies and they were adorable.  Cocker Spaniels are usually seen with their tails docked (cut off) like this:

Frizz Away would do wonders for you.

Of course, they’re not born that way, they have regular floppy tails.  Breeders generally use a device that puts a rubber band around the tail close to the base to cut off the blood supply until the tail falls off.

Take all those puppies to a vet?  Bitch, please.  Not my mother.

I came home one day to her and the puppies in the kitchen.   She gave me the old “put out your hand!” trick and I was sure it was a bug.  It took forever for her to convince me it wasn’t bugs.  I give her my hands and she puts all the bloodied puppy tails in my hand, still warm, I might add.  I didn’t freak out and puppy dog tails didn’t go flying, but I wasn’t pleased.   This didn’t make me squeamish.

Not too long after, I got my mother back.  I caught a large mouth bass and was gutting and cleaning it in the kitchen sink.  I found a whole, partially digested crayfish in it’s stomach and chased her with it until she gagged.  That didn’t make me squeamish.

This thing.  This thing makes me squeamish:

Look at this idiot.