Toys 2009

Everybody's singin', all the bells are ringing out...

Hey all, Merry Christmas!

Yes, I said it. I opted for political incorrectness and y'all are just gonna have to deal with it. Heh.

I just wanted to quickly share one gift that we exchanged. This was with some of the cousins on Katie's mom's side of the family. In lieu of regular, paid-for, what-retailers-are-begging-for gifts, we decided to make mix CDs of music we enjoy for everybody else. No, we're not making mix discs of music the recipient would like. These are of music we like in order to potentially introduce the recipient to new stuff.

Sounds like it should be pretty cool. Especially being the music fiend I am, right?

Not so. I hate making mix albums. I was dreading this. I remember the John Cusack character (Rob Gordon) in High Fidelity describing all the work he puts into the creation of a mix tape and similar information is shared by Rob Sheffield in his book Love is a Mix Tape. And, based solely on this input, I've been scared off of ever making mixes. Stuff like the delicate mix between soft and fast music, the blending of the end of one track into the beginning of the next, etc. I'm a perfectionist and, if I can't do something right, I don't want to do it at all. That's just how I am. 

However, after making the actual exchange yesterday, I feel much better about it. Everyone was really excited checking out the mixes that we all put together. Then, with those couple of people that forgot to include a tracklist, we threw the discs in a stereo and played "Name that Song." It was really fun despite my earlier dread. And Katie and I are kinda hoping we do it again next year. Heck, she's already planning out what she wants to do for hers.

But here are the albums we put together. Let me know what you think.

First, the covers. The covers are basically a photo of us die cut on top of a wallpaper of the album art for the songs contained on the disc. Disc one on the left is the disc in Katie's name and disc two is the one from me.

The KA2 Xmas Mixes

And now for the music...

Disc 1 (Katie's mix):

  • The Smiths - "Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want"
  • Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson - "Relator"
  • Rascal Flatts - "Life is a Highway" - she was worried about this fitting in, but it actually sounds decent, I think
  • She & Him - "Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?"
  • Dave Matthews Band - "Why I Am"
  • Weezer - "(If You're Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To"
  • Scissor Sisters - "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'"
  • Katy Perry - "Hot n Cold"
  • Doves - "There Goes the Fear"
  • Norah Jones - "Chasing Pirates"
  • Imani Coppola - "Legend of a Cowgirl"
  • Lady Gaga - "The Fame"
  • Phoenix - "Rome"
  • I Fight Dragons - "Heads Up, Hearts Down"
  • The All-American Rejects - "Gives You Hell"
  • 30 Seconds to Mars - "This is War"
  • Paramore - "Ignorance"
  • Pearl Jam - "Just Breathe"

Disc 2 (my mix):

  • The Flaming Lips - "Race for the Prize"
  • Matt & Kim - "Lessons Learned"
  • Pomplamoose - "Beat the Horse"
  • The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - "The Tenure Itch"
  • The Republic Tigers - "Buildings & Mountains"
  • Blitzen Trapper - "Gold for Bread"
  • Stardeath and White Dwarfs - "New Heat"
  • The Mooney Suzuki - "Alive & Amplified"
  • Tokyo Police Club - "Tesselate"
  • Razorlight - "America"
  • Phoenix - "Lasso"
  • Silverchair - "Straight Lines"
  • Wolfmother - "New Moon Rising"
  • Damone - "Out Here All Night"
  • Foo Fighters - "Wheels"
  • Bear in Heaven - "You Do You"
  • Modest Mouse - "Guilty Cocker Spaniel"
  • Dungen - "Du ar for Fin for Mig"

I was expecting most people to not know a majority of the stuff on my disc. I relish the thought of it being a musical expedition of sorts.

LemonadeAlice at Beyond Alice and Through the Looking Glass has bequeathed unto me the Lemonade Award, or at least that's what I think it's called. Might have something to do with being able to turn lemons into lemonade via your blog posting or maybe it has more to do with having posts that grate on your nerves like a sour lemon. Meh, I'll take it either way. Thanks Alice!

And now for the rules...

  • Put the Lemonade logo on your blog or within your post.
  • Nominate at least 10 blogs with great attitude or gratitude.
  • Link the nominees within your post.
  • Let the nominees know they have received this award by commenting on their blog.
  • Share the love and link to the person from whom you received this award.

Well, let's see what I can cobble together here. Mind you, these are just 10 of the many blogs I read and love every day. So, if you're not included, it's not from a lack of love. Trust me on that one.

Oh, and as for the fourth bullet, I may or may not get around to that right away. We all know my piss-poor commenting of late.

Merry Christmas to all my lemonheads out there!

Well, I'm outta here. Talk atcha soon.


What do you get if you gobble down sweets...

*Oink* Remember to eat turkey this Thanksgiving, not ham! *Oink*

He1n1e the Wonder Pig

This Public Service Announcement brought to you by He1n1e the Wonder Pig

Oh yeah, and Happy Thanksgiving!

I can't believe we're actually going to do this, but, for the first time in four or five years, Katie and I are going to take part in some Black Friday sales. Oh shoot me now. Here's where and what we're shooting for:

Old Navy - Free copy of Rock Band: Lego with purchase of $20 or more. And you get a free guitar with a purchase of Rock Band 2. I've played a few tracks worth of that game and I enjoy it. So why the hell not? And they do have it for the Wii. Old Navy opens at 3 a.m. Really, shoot me now. I was serious.

Target - Psych, season 3, on DVD for $12.99. This can be done anytime before noon, I believe. And, if Target holds to their style from last season, they'll offer rainchecks if it's sold out.

OfficeMax - Vivitar ViviCam DVR 810 HD Camcorder. This would definitely make video posting easier. And it's only $69.99. I'm kinda tired of using the video functionality on my point-and-shoot camera. I want higher quality video.

We'll see what happens.


I know just, just what you are...

My bank card is living a far more exotic life than I am, by far!

I was at Aldi attempting to purchase about $4.38 worth of Mexican food fixings and my bank card was denied.

I ran it again... denied.

I left the stuff behind and came home to check our account online... I couldn't log in.

I tried to change my password... no go.

So I called the bank and was told they needed to transfer me to the fraud division. Oh shit.

"Well, sir, we've had some questionable charges on your card. Have you been to Italy lately?"

I wish!

"I've got $45.42 at a gas station in [such-and-such town], Italy, and $938.47 at a photo studio in [another such-and-such town], Italy. We caught it when they tried to charge $1,403.27 at a place called Media World, which I think is probably similar to our Best Buy. Looks like they also did a $2 test charge at an Avis Rent-a-Car."

Holy craptards!

"We have completely shut down the use of your bank card and will track any continued attempted uses of the card."

So now I'm bank card less and we have no access to our online account at all since it's tied to my bank debit/credit card number. Katie's card is fine and all our identity information is supposedly secure as well. I'm also awaiting an affidavit in the mail so all this money can be credited back to us legally. And I need to stop by the bank and make sure everything is cool and that none of our checks will be given stop payments as a result. We've sent some in for bills lately and it would suck for them to not work.

This is some scary shit. I've heard of this happening and even know a person or two who has had it happen, but it never really hits home just how serious and freakish and mentally crippling it is until it happens to you.

Obviously someone spoofed my card from an in-person purchase as I never have nor ever plan to use my bank card for online purchases. I don't even link our real bank account to my PayPal account. I opened up a whole separate checking account at a different bank with a balance of a whopping $4 in it for Paypal. I want no online ties to our real bank account whatsoever. But apparently it's still not safe.

Right about now, I think the only fair thing is to give us all the stuff this douchebag bought as well as let us charge an Italian vacation to him. Sounds right, doesn't it?

Oh, and then I'd like to beat him to within an inch of his life. If he is actually a she, still fair game.

Actually this is more than just a bit related to the post above.

Jack Dorsey, one of the founders of Twitter, is creating a plug-in device and app that makes it possible to use your iPhone to scan credit cards.

Until my card was spoofed, I would likely have been okay with this sort of technology. But now, after the fact, I see it as making it even easier for someone to scan our information from our card to their phone when we're not looking. Sure they can do it now, but he's creating a device that makes the theft of this information that much simpler and more inexpensive considering the "Cube" costs him $0.40 to produce.

Sometimes technology ain't such a grand thing, is it?

Iphonecube
[image courtesy of engadget.com and tuaw.com]


Where's the deception...

It cracks me up sometimes just how we prioritize things in our lives.

The other night, after both Katie and I pretty much fell asleep while watching a show off our TiVo, we decided it was time to go to bed.

Did we go like we said we needed to or felt we should?

No. Of course not. Instead, Katie got it in her head that she wanted to find the Psych theme song as a ringtone for her iPhone, more specifically, the Boyz2Men rendition of it from a few weeks ago. Not being available as a purchasable ringtone on iTunes, we did some research and found what seemed to be viable instructions for making custom ringtones for an iPhone 3G. Then we had to find the song in MP3 format. And, perhaps, a few other Psych-related sounds like the Hindi version of the theme from a couple weeks prior to the Boyz2Men intro and Shawn chiming "Boom, boom, boom... muffins" to be used as a text message alert. Then convert them and then try to make them work.

All this in the name of going to sleep.

Of course it still didn't work. iTunes won't recognize the file as any sort of audio file for whatever reason. Stupid iTunes and their stupid ringtone policy.

They all work fine on my Blackberry. No special conversion necessary.

And Katie hates me for it.

Oh yeah, and after all was said and done, we were so wide awake that we watched three more shows off our TiVo. Go fig, eh?

I finally got to play Guitar Hero: World Tour yesterday with the BiL, Scott, for the first time in my life. Working drums, baby! The stupid display models at stores never seem to work. Always out of order.

Now, though, it was mine! Well, to play anyway. Otherwise it belongs to Scott and Becca.

I did okay. Anywhere from 68- 90% once I figured out the timing.

And one helluva calf workout. Holy crap!

Another TUA? Why, this could almost constitute a Snippet Monday! Nah, not really.

I just wanted to throw another reminder out there that Wednesday is almost here... the day when my hair becomes no more... and I'm only a little bit away from my fund raising goal

If you're able to help, please do so. Thank you all again!

DonateNow


I want to ride it where I like...

As I type this, Katie's asleep on the couch. We're supposed to go run some errands and get some stuff done, but we just got back about an hour ago from a 20-mile bike ride up and down the Fox River Trail

We had beautiful weather and it was a gorgeous ride, save for the point where you ride past the sewage treatment plant in Batavia. If you weren't feeling hunger pangs before...

But Katie's now completely wiped. I know she's getting tired on our rides when she starts to lean forward with her forearms on the handlebars instead of her hands. Never a good sign. Thankfully that didn't happen until about mile 18. 

She did take a few pictures. Sadly my PowerShot is in the shop with a busted zoom dial. But Katie took some (one of those times when Facebook readers should click through to view the photos)

Do I wake her up? I know we've got a lot to do, but I'm not suicidal.

I'm so stoked about this little gem I ordered. It's an official Invaded! coffee mug for Avitable's 2009 Halloween party

This thing is truly a work containing both fine craftsmanship from the folks at Zazzle.com and the artwork of Dave from Blogography. 

Invaded!   Invaded!

Unlike most coffee mugs, the design is not raised at all. It is so protected by ceramic glaze that there is no way to accidentally damage the logo without destroying the mug. And it's a heavy-duty mug at that. This is my favorite coffee mug second only to the kick-ass Jack Skellington mug that Katie bought me down at Disneyworld last year.

Kudos to Adam, Dave, and Zazzle on a fine product.

And no, I'm not receiving any sort of compensation from Adam, Dave, or Zazzle for this shameless plug other than warm, fuzzy feelings. I can't even go to the party. I'm just going to have to celebrate with my mug.

*sniffle*


When you're gone...

I swear, when technology rains, it freakin' pours.

About a month ago, the left half of my Bose In-Ear Buds died brutally. I was at the gym running and *fzztt* they died. That left me with the gym-attendant-chosen radio station. Christ it's painful.

You might remember me inquiring on Facebook and Twitter about some SkullCandy Ink'd earbuds. While I haven't picked them up yet, I still may. I've been suffering through the humiliation that is the standard iPod earbuds in the meantime, though.

Katie is not happy about the death of the Bose since we spent $100 on them. To me, I got a relatively good value out of them since I used them nearly daily for a year and a half, but it does still kinda suck. And that amount of money is why I was asking about something much less expensive like the SkullCandys. I can't see myself spending as much as I did on the Bose again. Not now at least.

And this morning, while watching the final episode of season one of Battlestar Galactica, another pair is fuzzing out on one side. I was listening to the episode on my big ol' Pioneer SE4000s to keep from waking up Katie. I've loved these over-the-ear, noise-reducing 'phones for quite a while. They're huge, they're bulky, the plastic of the frame creaks when you move them around... but I didn't care. The sound was fantastic, the bass response was awesome, the big sponge and foam covers blocked out anything short of a nuclear blast, and they have about a seven- or eight-foot-long cord so I could still sit a comfortable distance from the TV or stereo and use them.

The best thing about them? They cost me $50 and lasted 16+ years. I was still in high school when I got them, that much I'm sure about, and I graduated high school in '93. Damn, they don't even show up in a quick Google search, that's how old they are.

Crap. Now I need to choose which to replace. I'm sure it will be my daily wear since I'd use them more often. I may be able to juice some more time out of my Pioneers since they aren't completely dead yet. If I move around the cable on the left side a little bit, the sound returns. Annoying, yes. But better than buying two new pairs of 'phones.

This blows.

I am very techno-bummed right now.

It really kills me sometimes when a song like The Who's "Who Are You," for example, comes up on shuffle on my iPod like it did this morning and all I can think of is the opening credit sequence from CSI.

It truly pains me that I can no longer enjoy the song just for the song but that it now has to be forever associated with that show in my head. It's not always such a bad thing like, say, when used in a Quentin Tarantino movie. But, otherwise, TV and product ad usage are really gonna be the death of my enjoyment of music.


It's finally happened, I'm slightly mad...

Most of you know of or have personally experienced Microsoft's Blue Screen of Death.

Some of you might have heard of the X-Box Red Ring of Death.

But were any of you aware that Macintosh has a Gray Screen of Panic and Disarray?

Gsod


It's also known as a Kernel Panic, and I got it this morning on my G5 iMac.

I was trying to eject my USB thumbdrive when, all of a sudden, my desktop was cloaked in gray. I could still see everything underneath, but the keyboard and mouse would not respond. The GSOPAD said that I needed to reboot my computer. Since I could really do nothing else, I complied.

After rebooting, I got a pop-up acknowledging that the system had to be forcibly rebooted after a failure of the operating system.

This doesn't sound good. Not at all.

Any other Mac users out there ever have the same problem? Might it be time to reinstall the operating system? Would that do any good? I know I still have my Adobe software discs. I only hope I can still find my old Office CD.

Continuing on the suckage front... We are one week away and counting from FabCon, Baby! in beautiful Lexington, Kentucky.

And I can't go.

I was supposed to attend. The plan was for me to take a long weekend and drive with Katie to visit my aunt and uncle in Louisville and then head into Lexington. We were going to rent a car (because both our cars have far too many miles on them to survive this trip) and get a hotel room. Then Katie couldn't get the extra time off work so it became a solo trip. Then a personal crisis arose necessitating the reallocation of the funds set aside for this trip.

And it sucks. But it was a necessary decision. Trying to spend on both the trip and this other thing, which shall remain nameless, would be stretching us way too thin financially.

So to anybody who was looking forward to hanging out with us, I'm truly sorry. The worst part is that I'm not sure when I'll ever be able to meet DutchBitch now. That really sucks. I'm sorry, hon. There's still hope with several domestic blogger friends, but it's those ones from across the pond where scheduling gets hairy.


We don't need another hero...

Happy Easter everyone!

I guess Katie and I can now eat sweets again. But, you know what? The concept just isn't appealing to me anymore. We did do well through our 47ish days. I say 47 because, if you look at a calendar, it actually started that long ago. Apparently Catholics take Sundays off from their Lent promises. I never knew that. But we kept going through those Sundays anyway.

We did lapse twice. Once was when my parents took us out for Katie's birthday dinner and we split a piece of cake. The funny thing was, it didn't taste like some great sweet revelation. It was just... cake. The same thing happened last weekend. We had some cake at Katie's parents' house and it did nothing for me. We did try a couple of our chocolate strawberries this morning from our favorite chocolatier in Geneva and it's just not the same anymore. I also had some jelly beans this morning and I've got a stomach ache now.

Have I lost the taste for chocolate and processed sugar? Is that even possible?

I think dieting just got that much simpler.

Katie and I went out to GameStop last night to buy an extra guitar for Guitar Hero on the Wii. I wanted to be able to play side by side with her just to make it more fun.

I started pricing them at GameStop and they had this cheap-o, off-brand guitar that looked like crap for $30. I couldn't see myself paying for something that looked like it was going to fall apart the same day, so I asked about the official guitar controllers. They were $60, without the game.

Then I saw a brand-new Guitar Hero: Aerosmith game on the shelf with the Aerosmith-branded guitar controller. It was marked down to $50.

So, instead of paying $60 for just a controller, I pay $10 less and get a controller and a game. True, it's a game I didn't enjoy that much, so I'll probably trade it back to them for another $15 in credit thus bringing my overall spending down to $35. 

Who was doing the thinking behind this one? Not that I'm complaining, but seriously.


I am the hunter...

I am the Great White Mouse Hunter.

I have skills that far supercede any mere mortal when it comes to the trapping and elimination of small furry rodents.

BobaFettI am the Great White Mouse Hunter.

When most people fail to capture their disease-laden adversaries, I succeed.

I am the Great White Mouse Hunter.

I am Boba Fett facing down a Wookiee. Dog the Bounty Hunter to a bail jumper. Chris Hansen to MySpace pedophiles.

I am the Great White Mouse Hunter.

In the last two years, I have, with the help of the Great White Mouse Huntress (Katie), killed four furry invaders as of this morning. Three in the house with traps and one outside with a car.

I am the Great White Mouse Hunter.

Our trap-laying skills are second to none. When we lay a trap, it is thought out carefully and with effectiveness in mind. When a trap is set, we will catch you.

I am the Great White Mouse Hunter.

Now if only someone else would come along and pick up the carcasses. I hate that part.

I have renamed my iPod. It was Snap-P because my nickname in high school was "Snappy" (before you ask, no). Now it's iSonic. Why? Because apparently my iPod has an obsession with the music of Sonic Youth.

When on Shuffle, a Sonic Youth song seems to pop up one in every 10 or 15 songs. This has been going on for about two months now. And I only have 110 Sonic Youth songs of the 5,584 total songs on my iPod.

Not that I'm complaining. Sonic Youth is on there for a reason.


Exit... Stage Left...

I think I'm a bit overdue on a post reviewing my experience at Second City Chicago. Actually, I'm a bit overdue on a post, period. For that, I apologize. No excuses, just an apology.

Second City, though? Even bigger apologies there. I've known about Second City for years as it's a Chicago mainstay for comedy and theater and yet I've never visited. There's no real reason why, I just haven't. It took an offer of free tickets to see America: All Better! to get me off my lazy ass to venture into Old Town to see what it's all about. I'm glad I did.

For those not in the know, Second City is an improv comedy troupe based out of Chicago, Los Angeles, and Toronto and served as the launchpad for the careers of such comedy visionaries as Peter Boyle, Harold Ramis, John and Jim Belushi, Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Mike Myers, Chris Farley, Steve Carell (who also taught there), Amy Sedaris, Steven Colbert, and Tina Fey, along with dozens more notable alumni. Many of the shows they open to the public are very timely in nature and you might be amazed how quickly they turn around a script or adapt an existing script to reflect even the most minute current event.

But not only is it an improv theater company, it's also a school for aspiring entertainers. Second City offers year-round classes in writing for improv, directing, acting, and so much more. Sandra at Internal Monoblog is a graduate of some of their writing and acting classes back when she lived here in Chicago and, if the bank account allows down the line, I'd be interested in taking some of the writing classes.

The show I was there to see was America: All Better! on the mainstage. On another stage, they were showing Rod Blagojevich Superstar, which my mom saw and said was one of the most hilarious things she's seen in years.

Aab A:AB featured seven actors (we had two understudies that night, but you never would have guessed it as they were just as fantastic as all the regulars) playing out nearly two dozen sketch comedy routines with pretty much all of them sticking to the shared theme of our pitiful economy. Some focused on relationships and there were also several politically inclined routines, both local and national. Some of the sketches came complete with song and dance. I don't really want to give anything away about the shows in case you're planning on seeing them yourselves or if the co-producer of the show wants to take my suggestion about putting snippets out on YouTube. But, suffice it to say, they were dead on target with their wry brand of humor just skewering their targets and, let me tell you, no one was safe. 

After the two hour show ended, the actors came back up on stage along with a couple more mainstage alumni for an hourlong improv routine based on ads stolen from the Chicago Reader's I Saw You section. Both hilarious and creepy all rolled in one odd little package of dark humor.

And I will go back. I don't see how you can stay away from this high grade of comedy at such an affordable price ($20 per ticket). Plus, they have a full appetizer menu and bar available should you get the munchies.

I will say, though, that after seeing this show, I agree that Rahm Emanuel is one bad-ass Jew. Wow, he really is missing part of a finger. Who knew working at Arby's was so dangerous?

Totally Unrelated Aside (TUA): Katie misses listening to her iPod in her car. Ever since she got an iPhone, her iPod has remained docked on her clock radio in the bedroom.

Don't get me wrong, she has music on her iPhone, but no good way of playing it in her car. We bought her a car dock for her iPod back in the day that plays through FM stations and she was fine with it. Worked great. But it is completely incompatible with iPhones. I don't get this. It has the same dock connector as almost all the iPods in existence. It connects to our computer the same way for song transfers, charging, and firmware upgrades. So why the hell won't the iPhone work with this dock for something so simple as charging and playback?

Yesterday, we went to Best Lie, er, Buy and purchased a Griffin iTrip AutoPilot. The guy at Best Buy told us it was the best.

Simply put, if that's the best, I'd hate to see the worst. This thing sucks. The transmitter's strength is for shit. We tried a couple dozen different stations and only two came in but were so filled with underlying static that they were unlistenable for any extended stretch of time. Plus, it doesn't seat properly in the lighter port of Katie's car; the damn thing would nudge just a hair and immediately cease working. I'm pretty sure we're taking it back today or tomorrow. But I have no idea what to get her as a replacement.

Do any of you iPhonePhiles have a preferred way to do this? No, Katie has neither an auxiliary port nor a tape deck in her car so those options are moot. What hardware solutions have worked for you? Please help. Katie has been relegated to *gulp* FM radio stations for entertainment while driving!


Buried in my shit...

Okay, Comcast, you're really starting to piss me off.

Not your cable services so much. The quality's been fine and we've had little to no downtime on our service. Sure your pricing could use some help. I'm hoping this digital conversion will make that better because, ideally, we'll no longer need to pay extra for HD content since that will be the rule as opposed to the exception.

No, my problem is with your HD DVR. Oh it frustrates me so. And I think our two-year-long courtship may soon come to an end if we can wrangle a deal to our benefit.

You see, until we got our plasma TV and HD broadcasting, we were devoted TiVo users. However, HD broadcasting takes up four times as much space as regular programming on a TiVo and, since the HD TiVo was about $500 at the time, we settled for the Comcast variant. Small monthly fee and we don't have to buy it outright. Sounded ideal.

But the box is SLOW to react, difficult to program, catches all copies of a show even when I set it to "New Episodes Only," shuts off whenever it damn well feels like it, doesn't have a trash bin from which we can recover deleted programming, and doesn't have that cool few-second rewind that TiVo does after fastforwarding through a commercial break.

But the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back? It has begun to spontaneously delete programs off the box that we haven't yet watched. Last night, we got home and were going to watch the second part of The Last Templar (stop laughing) from Monday night, only to discover that it, along with the first four episodes of the second season of Damages, were all gone. There were others, too, but we can't remember what they were. And, to boot, there were five copies of the exact same episode of The Closer on there. AGAIN, we set that program to only catch new shows and this was one we had already recorded and watched and deleted. To make things even weirder, those four episodes were marked with times like 86, 32, 79, and 91 minutes even though the episode was only 60 minutes.

Tivo What gives, Comcast? Why is your product so inferior?

Well, guess what? We have an old TiVo that is due for service at Best Buy before the warranty expires (just found the paperwork) and, if we can make it happen, we hope to be able to swap it out and pay a little extra to upgrade to the HD TiVo that is now $200 less, hella more reliable, and will give us back our cute little TV dude. We miss him. Can he ever forgive our betrayal?

Totally Unrelated Aside (TUA): Well hell, Shiny does my blog better than I do.

He's calling it Plagiarism Week '09. I'm calling it a tryout. And he wins. My blog is yours, Shiny. Enjoy!

(bet he didn't see that one comin'.)


It all keeps adding up, I think I'm cracking up...

All animals have their quirks, right? Oh God, I hope they do or we apparently have psycho-dog on our hands. Okay, even if they don't have quirks, just tell me they do so I don't have to live in fear for my life the rest of the time that Lilly's with us, okay?

Anyway, now that you've all reassured my nerves (you did, right?), I'd like to share one of the many quirks that Lilly has. I'm sharing it because we finally captured it on video. You see Lilly likes to spaz out on occasion. I got a photo of it one time, but it's hard to really make out what happens based on a single still frame.

Spazzing

And yet it's hard to know when she'll go into a full-blown episode to be able to capture it on video. The only time we can guarantee it will happen is after she's taken a bath. So here's Lilly in all her post-bath glory. We hope you enjoy.


Lilly's Freak Out from Kevin Apgar on Vimeo.

And please forgive us the titling on the video. It's the first time either Katie or I have played with iMovie. I couldn't get it to work for the life of me (I could create titles, but iMovie refused to add them to my video on the iMac), but Katie got it to work on her new MacBook with a newer version of iMovie. I think she did a great job and I'm sure she'll only get better. It's just sad that I, with the media studies degree, can't figure the damn thing out. So she just may be my editor from here on out. We'll see.

Oh, and even though I've proclaimed my disgust with Green Day (oh god, how I love re-reading those comments on occasion; warms my cockles), even I've gotta admit that "Basketcase" is the perfect song to title this post.

Totally Unrelated Aside (TUA): I've been trying for nearly a year now to convince Katie to play. And she's staunchly refused. "No," she'll say. "I just don't want to. It just doesn't look fun."

How can Guitar Hero III on the Wii not be fun?

Well, something tipped the scales in my favor and finally drove her to want to play. It came in the form of a challenge from Kristy of Our News... All the Time who received Guitar Hero II for her Playstation II for Christmas. She and her husband, Graham, play a lot. Graham says he just can't quite grasp it but Kristy's glomming on like nobody's business. She'll play on medium and handily defeat Graham who's playing on easy.

I get the feeling this is going to turn into a tag team duel. I'll have to play the medium level (of which I've only played a little bit, but I rock all but one of the easy songs at a 93%+ rating) against Kristy while Katie tackles Graham at the easy setting.

I think we're going to have to spend the next several weeks with a hardcore diet of Guitar Hero III and deprive her of all other things. Oh, we may just have to. There is no way the kapgars are going down. No, no. Not to some Mommy Blogger and her hubby. ;-)

Oh it's on... it's on like Donkey Kong!