Monday, January 31, 2011

Birfday Shopping

Mission from God?

Looks like someone's getting a band back together.

(get it?)

I Still Love You Man

Jason Segal uploaded this to funny or die last night.

I'd already seen it.

Traffic Reports are Useless

I planned my morning commute based on a traffic report I heard on the radio.

You'd think I'd know better by now.

They said 93 South was jammed from 213 to 495. I was going to go that way anyway, but route 213 was jammed up past the spot where I get on, so I would have been stuck there too.

The same report said that route 495 was jammed from 28 to 93. That's about 2 miles. It's bad, but better than route 93. So I got onto 213 and headed for 495.


Route 495 south was jammed at least from 213 to 93. About... four or five miles more than the radio reported. Oh, and I heard said radio traffic report three times before I finally headed to 495. It was the same each time.

I spent more than 30 minutes on 495 when I should have spent 10, tops.

Thanks for nothing WBZ radio 1030am. You suck.


So, National Weather Service, what you are saying is that after this terrible January worth of snow we are going to kick off February with, possibly, another foot of snow followed immediately by freezing rain and sleet?

Bite me.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

2010 is Over

I still have today and tomorrow to finish the 2010 RPM Challenge before the 2011 challenge starts on Tuesday February 1, 2011.

Five songs in the can. Two more could be done tonight if my finger tips hold up. Three more... Not even close.


Things like this are less likely to happen when you practice more than once a year.



Jen is working in the living room. I'm cleaning the house in preparation for someone's birthday #8 next weekend.

Jen came very close to giving birth on her birthday. That leads to confusion now. We have been so focused on the little man's b-day that we are risking overlooking the wifey's b-day.

This will not do!

She needs to tell me what she wants for her birthday. If she doesn't she's going to get a stack of books, blurays, and CDs that I like.


Just kidding.

In unrelated news, brooms scare the holy hell out of the cat.

Sorry cat.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


I think she's really done with me taking pictures.

Topics for Debate

Just trying to generate some discussion tonight.

Ghosts: Believe in them or not?

We watched a couple of ghost story shows on the biography channel tonight. Personally I don't believe in very much in the supernatural sense. I am way too skeptical for that. However, I am smart enough to know that I am pretty dumb about almost every topic ever, so I can't discount anything... even though I sort of want to. Ya know?

Anyway, I have never had a ghost experience myself so I am inclined to not believe, but there are people in my life who have and do... so who knows.


The National Hockey League All Star Game: Always ridiculous, but this year more than ever?

We're watching the skills competition right now. It just gets dumber every year. This year the whole fantasy draft has, in my opinion, turned a terrible waste of energy into a joke of spinal tappian proportions... and that's before they add the super hero stuff in during tomorrow's game. What do you think?


Quantum Leap (the television show): Appropriate for kids between the ages of 8 and 10? I can't remember the show that well, but there has been some "time traveling would be awesome" discussions with the kids and we thought that might be a good show to watch with them. Common sense media says maybe for ages 9 and up and maybe not for age 8. Do you remember that show at all?



She told me it was the greatest supermarket EVER!


Yesterday we had a team of roofers here working on a couple of things on our roof. It was expensive. Not bank breaking by any stretch, but expensive.

We have two more things that the roofers may be coming back to take care of, and my feelings today on the expense can be summed up in one word:


Even better: Bonus (two days early)

Thanks, work! Woohoo!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Space Shuttle

With all the sad reminiscing about the Challenger disaster let's not forget that humans in space is still the coolest thing ever.


Our roof is snow and ice free!


I was in 9th grade. In between periods I had to go to my locker to switch out my books. A friend was standing in front of a nearby locker and he asked if I'd heard. About what, I asked. The Space Shuttle blew up. No it didn't, I replied. Yes it did, he stood firm. No it didn't, I replied again.

This was NASA. This was the smartest people in the world. These were the same people who put humans on the moon for christ's sake. Space shuttles don't blow up, that's absurd.

It's hard to imagine that it was 25 years ago today. Partly because it's hard to imagine that I'm old enough to remember something that happened 25 years ago, but that's my own personal hang up. Mostly its because I can still remember it so vividly. It's really like it happened yesterday.


Why does something that may result in roof leaks have to look so pretty?

I expect to be taking a shovel to these suckers some time tomorrow morning.

2011-01-28 - Ice 002

2011-01-28 - Ice 005

2011-01-28 - Ice 008

2011-01-28 - Ice 011

2011-01-28 - Ice 015

2011 is the year of the macro. You heard it here first.
2011-01-28 - Ice 016

2011-01-28 - Ice 021

Thursday, January 27, 2011


The setting sun, as seen from my desk at work.


A Compassionate Snowplow Driver?

I had pretty much just finished the driveway this morning when the plows finally came.

I still had to shovel up the snow I had just brushed off of the cars, but the snow blower had done it's thing (sorry for the noise, neighbors) and even the fire hydrant was sort of dug out.

The second plow was the one that buried the end of our driveway. The driver said something to me that sounded a lot like, "I'll be back in a sec."

Was he taunting me? The jerk!

Then as I was picking up the snow removal stuff something amazing happened.

The plow returned...

And cleared the end of the driveway.

I don't think the driver saw that I was still there, but I waved to him in hopes that he'd see that his compassionate gesture was appreciated.

Wow. I never... Wow!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Dead Ducks

We got to see the kids' report cards tonight. Neither of them were perfect. They both have a couple of things to work on for the next term. Very important things that I know they can handle.

Still though...

Damn those report cards were awesome.

I have two super smart step kids.

Who's the luckiest step dad ever?


Cadbury Mini Eggs Season

I was just given a handful of Cadbury Mini Eggs.

Oh the bliss!

If I were told that the only food I could consume over the course of the rest of my life was Cadbury Mini Eggs I would be overwhelmed with glee.

Oh, how I love the mini eggs.

Can You Feel It?

It's out there, can you feel it? It's hiding in plain site. You can't see it, but I bet you can feel it. I can feel it, can you feel it?

Imminent Snowpocalypse.

It hasn't started snowing here, just to the west of metropolitan Boston. The weather channel is telling me that it should have started within the last hour. Is that a good thing? I don't know.

Look out the window and it looks like it should be snowing.

Breathe in the air and it feels like it should be snowing.

Yesterday Jen and I had a burst of roofing paranoia. Specifically, our roof already has about 30 inches of snow on it, can it take another 6-12 inches tonight? I know it could, but why risk it? Also, there's big time ice up there. It was worrying us. I'd do something about it, but I'm so heavy I would have fallen right through the roof, and then crashed through the living room floor, and landed on the couch in the cellar.

So yesterday my lovely wife hired a roofing company to come and clear things up a little. They didn't clear off the whole roof, but they got rid of the heavy stuff on the edges. They didn't get rid of all of the ice, but they got some. Our house is in much better shape for another big storm than it was 24 hours ago.

Please please please don't let me have just jinxed anything. Unless I jinxed it so that it won't snow again this year. I can handle that.

Also, in preparation for yet another storm, I added to our garage one item that all home owners have to have. A five gallon can of gasoline. The snow blower will be plenty fueled when the clean up begins... again.

I hate snow.
I hate snow.
I hate snow.


This might change your perspective about things.

That's a bad joke, sorry.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Moore's Law

According to Moore's law, a computer becomes obsolete after about 18 months. (Not really, the law states that the processing power will double every 18 months, and if I have an 18 month old computer that is half as awesome as a new one, then I consider it obsolete.)

Jen's super laptop is almost 18 months old. She's been jonzin' for an iMac. Full disclosure, I've been jonzin' for a Mac too. Probably more along the Macbook lines for me.

Today Jen moved a desk and her old monitor into the living room to see if using a desktop computer (such as an iMac) would be better for her back. After messing with her laptop plugged into the monitor for a few minutes she said she didn't think she needed an iMac anymore.


Yeah right sweetie. As soon as that 18th month ends you're going to want an iMac. I know you so well... and I love you so much.

Patches... Yet Again

Work Station Rearranging

Chocolate Shakes

Jen and I were trying to remember where we were in California during our honeymoon when we had those fan-freakin-tastic chocolate shakes.

You were right sweetie. It was Ruby's Diner in San Juan Capistrano.


I'm in hell. Up to my eyebrows in hell.

I have had the song, "Come on Eileen" stuck in my head for 24 hours.

If you can imagine a worse hell than that, then you are a dark little sucker indeed.

If I don't stop hearing that song buzzing through my empty head I am going to have to check myself into Arkham or something.

Get it out of my head! Get it out of my head!

Bite Me

213... Where it all started, nearly two hours ago.


Traffically speaking, the dusting of snow that we barely got today was equal to a two foot blizzard.

It's 9:10 and I'm only in Concord.


Mother Nature Can Kiss My Ass

We are still under the weather here, but we both feel a little better today. Let's hope this trend continues.

Let's talk about snow again, for just a second.

After hearing for the last few days that the next big storm will hit us Wednesday night into Thursday morning, we got up on this frigid, 10 degree Tuesday to see... What? Why, a coating of fresh snow on the cars.

The weather channel has posted a slippery-snow-covered-morning-commute warning and everything.

All of that, plus the two feet or so of snow that is still on our roof and everywhere else, leads me to one heartfelt conclusion:

Mother Nature can kiss my big fat pasty white ass.

Seriously. You suck, Mother Nature. I've never wanted a Spring to get here so badly.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Nervous Moment

Earlier tonight we were all in the living room, about to play Super Mario Bros. Wii when I heard what sounded like a helicopter flying kinda low. I commented that there was probably an accident out on route 93 somewhere.

After a few seconds it stopped sounding like a helicopter and started sounding like a plane. A low flying plane. A really really ridiculously low flying plane. Low flying enough that when it flew directly over us the entire house shook.

You'd be surprised how stressful that is. Even a few minutes later we were still staring at each other with WTF looks on our faces.

Lets hope that doesn't happen again, eh?

Sickness Speads

I've been sick since Thursday. Jen is now officially sick too. The kids stayed at Nana and Papa's last night. I just picked them up and drove them home. In the car my step daughter sneezed.

Uh oh.

Jen and I took a Skype test drive today too. Yet another way we can bug the hell out of each other. Hehe

Being sick blows. Just saying.


The friggin spell check on my iPhone keeps changing "Jen" to "Ken". Stupid thing.

Saturday, January 22, 2011


There are some new folks at the piano lesson today. I just can't get over how pretentious and obnoxious people can be.

These two guys practically have neon signs over their heads broadcasting how awesome they think they are.

People piss me off.

Friday, January 21, 2011


Not only did I go to work sick in the snow, but I got stuck working an hour late.

Then when I came home the love of my life was making pancakes.

True Love Always.

Bite Me

It's snowing today. There was already a couple of inches on the ground when I left for work.

Yesterday it wasn't snowing, but there was a water main break in a town I don't go anywhere near on roads I don't drive on.

Today's commute was 10 minutes shorter than yesterday's.

Also, I checked my work email to see if there was any kind of you-can-work-from-home-today messages sent. That was at 7:30am and there were no such messages. When I got to work and opened up my email there was exactly such a message, sent at 7:32am.

I hate when that happens.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


After having worked at UPS I feel like a traitor when I use Fed-Ex.

Bite Me

This is hands down the worst commute I've ever experienced.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Bite Me

It's snowing again.


I hate snow. I loathe snow. I damn all snow to the fiery depths where it won't be snow any longer.

The snow blower did a decent job last night. It had a rough time at the plowed end of the driveway, but with a little manual shoveling we got through it all. This morning the temperature was a little above freezing so the worst case scenario of driving on a skating rink didn't happen. Of course, tomorrow morning temps are supposed to be in the low 20s and that, following a full day of slowly melting snow, should give us said skating rinks.

I hate snow.

I hate winter.

I love New England, but I hate the damn winter. If we could just take the entire region and drop it a couple of dozen latitude lines, that would be perfect.

I do so hate snow.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Freakin' Tooth

This is what the site of the Methuen Festival of Trees looks like when there are no trees...

My stupid tooth isn't fixed. It's going to take at least two more appointments. I hate my freakin' tooth.

I did get an X-ray for the first time in a generation though.

Dental Terror

I'm not afraid of dentists. I should throw that out right away.

The problem I have is that I choke on all of the dental tools. Put that mirror-on-a-stick thing near my face and I start to choke. Everything. I can't do x-rays, I can't do almost anything beyond the most basic cleaning, and even that is a frustrating adventure.

Having said that...

I broke a tooth. I had an appointment today. They told me they think it can be saved but I have to go to another dentist to get the work done. Now I am about to leave to go see this second dentist.

Two dentist appointments in one morning is horror beyond words for me.



The potential for this to be the worst morning ever is very high.

Snow? Check.
Ice? Check.
Dentist appointment? Check.

See what I mean?

Monday, January 17, 2011

MLK Day Recap

I got a lot done on this Martin Luther King Day.

I wrote lyrics and melodies for six songs and got a take down on tape for each of them. Some of them had harmonies too. (One of them almost got a counter melody, but I figured I was pushing my luck on that one.)

I went to lunch at the 99 in North Andover with my lovely bride, Jennifer. We also got to explore a little as the traffic getting back to her office was horrendous and we found a back way.

I watched the Bruins as they annihilated the former Whalers 7-0. Actually, I had the game on as I was working on other things, so I didn't watch a whole lot of it. I did catch all three of defenseman Zdeno Chara's goals. I can't remember the last time I saw a Bruins defenseman earn a hat trick.

I went to the new Mexican restaurant on route 28, right on the town/state line between Methuen, MA and Salem, NH. Of course I went with my lovely bride, Jennifer. The food was pretty good, although being some one who strongly dislikes cheese, there wasn't a lot on the menu that appealed to me. The one thing that looked really good wasn't available, but what I had (don't ask me what it was called) was really good. They made guacamole fresh at the table. My lovely bride, Jennifer was pleased.

I lit a fire, but it wasn't a very good one. The coals are still glowing, but they are almost out.

I did a little coding with my lovely bride, Jennifer. She showed me a couple of jQuery tricks that looked pretty cool. (I got the page to hide a submit button if input into two text fields were invalid. I thought it was cool at least.)

Now we are wrapping up the laptop related fun and getting ready to watch an episode of How I Met Your Mother before calling it quits for the night.

All in all I would say that was a holiday well spent.

The only way it could have been better was if my lovey bride, Jennifer had been able to spend the entire day with me.

Tomorrow? Dentist. Be afraid!

Patriots Depression

I hope everyone who is depressed about yesterday's Patriots game watched this afternoon's Bruins game. 7-0 win over the Whale. That oughta cheer everyone up.

Seven of the 10 songs have lyrics/melodies. I didn't finish, but I'm a butt load closer than I was a week ago. I might pull this out at just about exactly the 11 months late date.

We're home now, sitting in front of the fire. Getting ready to write some code.

Always a party.

Moon Over Mexico

...and by Mexico I mean the new Mexican restaurant, Plaza Azteca.

Music Day

I have decided to celebrate Martin Luther King Day by trying to finish last year's RPM record.

One song is finished. Three others have the painful, elusive vocal tracks done. I won't finish today, but I do expect to finish eventually. Hopefully before the 2011 challenge starts on February first.

I'm taking a quick break now to have lunch with the girl of my dreams, the love of my life, my wife.


I just need to say this publicly:

I love my wife. She is absolutely wonderful. I could not be happier.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Couch Night

Home on the couch, the sick dude and his baby and their kitty.

Out House

I finally got around to shoveling out the fire hydrant in our front yard.

To all the neighborhood dogs:

You're welcome.



When a couple goes to a restaurant and they both order exactly the same meal is it painfully cute?

I think so.

Jenny and I do it a lot.

ER Recap

Yesterday I went to the emergency room at Holy Family Hospital! WHEEEEE!

Last week I broke a tooth (another tooth). Shortly after I started feeling a little swelling in the roof of my mouth. It hurt. The tooth hurt. I assumed they were related. I tried to get a dentist appointment yesterday but the best they could do was Tuesday. I tried to talk to my doctor but was told she was out of the office for a while. I said screw it, left work and went to the emergency room.

The two things are not related. The doctor said the swelling looked like a burn or something that got infected. I don't remember burning myself. I did eat Peanut Butter Captain Crunch last weekend, and that, in the past, would lead to me cutting the roof of my mouth... a risk yes, but Peanut Butter Captain Crunch is soooo worth the risk.

Anyway, I got some antibiotics to hopefully fight off the infection, and I have a great big bottle of ibuprofen to take care of the tooth pain. So what If I'll be eating soft foods for a few days. My gorgeous, sweet, generous, loving, amazing, incredible wife made scrambled eggs last night. Isn't she the best? I sure think she is. The fact that she's the best woman ever is one of the billion reasons why I love her.

So I will talk funny until the swelling goes down. 'S' sounds come out as 'sh' sounds, and 't' and 'j' sound a little... mushy. At least I won't be lisping Sidney Crosby when the Bruins play the Penguins this afternoon. Syd is still out with a concussion. Pittsburgh's loss should be Boston's gain. No offense, I just like our chances of winning more when the best player in the league is in the press box. That's all.

Notice how I didn't say best player on Earth? That would be Bobby Orr. Sorry Syd, but you've got light years to go before you're in Bobby's league.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Moon Over ER

My ER Bed

My ER bed.

ER Blues


What the hell is this? Suddenly the dates for astrological signs have changed? I'm not a Taurus anymore? WTF? I was perfect for Taurus. Taurus is a bull... I'm a big fat guy who is full of shit. Perfect!

Now I'm an Aries? What the hell is an Aries?

I am so mad* right now!

The New Dates:

Capricorn: Jan. 20 - Feb. 16
Aquarius: Feb. 16 - March 11
Pisces: March 11- April 18
Aries: April 18 - May 13
Taurus: May 13 - June 21
Gemini: June 21 - July 20
Cancer: July 20 - Aug. 10
Leo: Aug. 10 - Sept. 16
Virgo: Sept. 16 - Oct. 30
Libra: Oct. 30 - Nov. 23
Scorpio: Nov. 23 - Nov. 29
Ophiuchus: Nov. 29 - Dec. 17
Sagittarius: Dec. 17 - Jan. 20

*No I'm not. I'm just kidding.

Here is where I got the list of dates.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Explaining a Complex Topic to a Seven Year Old

Okay, so how do you explain the concept of a morally justified war to a seven year old and a nine year old? How do you demonstrate that some causes are worth fighting and giving your life for?

You try and give a situation where someone is forcing you to believe in something you think is absurd.

Jen's example was what if someone tried to force all of America to believe in a giant cheese.

Fits of laughter from the seven year old and the nine year old.

I love this family so much it's insane. I love them like crazy. They are the best thing that's ever happened to me.

More Snow Pictures

The daylight pictures are from a little before noon and they were taken out of windows. The night pictures are from about 7:30, just after we finished cleaning the driveway.

fireplace and snow 013

fireplace and snow 014

fireplace and snow 016

This is a fire hydrant. In case you couldn't tell.
fireplace and snow 019

fireplace and snow 021

fireplace and snow 022

fireplace and snow 042

fireplace and snow 039

That is a lot of snow.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The January Blizzard of 2011

I title these pictures, "Jenny and Shit Tons of Snow."


fireplace and snow 040

fireplace and snow 044

D90 Fireplace Pics

I just unloaded randoms off the camera. Here are some amazing fireplace pictures! WOOHOO

fireplace and snow 004

fireplace and snow 009

Snow... Again

It's snowing. It's snowing a lot. There is a ton of snow on the ground and it is still coming down hard. No commute for me today, I'm working from home. So is Jen. She's on the couch next to me.

We went to Jen's folks' on Monday night and picked up a snow blower. They had two and generously offered one to us. Words cannot express how thankful we are. Today we'll actually get to use it. Not for a while though, I want this storm to be over and done with before I go outside. The kids are at their dad's for the day so we don't have to go get them anywhere. We're both home from work. There is no reason to rush going out into the tundra.

The Bruins game last night was a blast. We had large cushioned seats, a waitress, a couple of drunken stupid people next to us that we could make fun of. My brother John and his wife Mary were basically one section away. Oh yeah, and the Bruins utterly destroyed the Senators by the score of 6-0.

Patrice Bergeron completed a hat trick in the second period. I have only seen one NHL hat trick in person, and that was Cam Neely, but the rain of hats onto the ice was very impressive. Then during the second intermission they recredited the third Bergeron goal to Brad Marchand. So what did Bergy do? He went out and scored another goal in the third. Those few who kept there hats could do so no longer and the rains came again.

The tickets were a Christmas present from the love of my life, Jennifer. Thank you so much for a great gift sweetie. Merry Christmas, and I love you so much!