Shade Chill

Everytime I buy a book at the Doylestown bookstore, they ask if I belong to their club. As Groucho Marx said (and probably made most famous by Woody Allen), “I don’t care to belong to any club that will have me as a member”.

I have a great advance for TV weather reporting. Right now, weatherman/weatherwomen report on the high, the low, and windchill (which is a calculation of temperature reduced by a factor of wind speed). I suggest we start reporting Shade Chill, what the temperature feels like if you’re in the shade and not the sun. Let’s start a movement people, we can flood the American Meteorological Society with emails begging for Shade Chill.

How awesome would it be to attend that annual meeting, you could rub elbows with John Bolaris, Hurricane Schwartz, Al Roker, and countless others. Be careful hanging with Bolaris though, did you ever read this article about him? (it is two pages long and well worth the read!)

There is a society for everything. I was reading an article about the National Association To Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA) slamming some actor or politician for discriminating against fat people. The NAAFA actually has an annual meeting too, on the website you can book a room for it at the Westin at the San Francisco Airport in August. I wonder if the NAAFA has major endorsements from fast food companies and candy companies. To be clear, I am not taking a position for or against the NAAFA. I won’t be joining anytime soon.

If I could join some organization, it would have to be something awesome, here’s the organizations that I would consider joining:

North American Falconers Association (

United Skeeball Association (

Nuclear Weapons Technician Association (

The Center For Association Leadership ( – who wouldn’t like an association about leading associations, it must be great to lead this association.

The Hemingway Society (
Stuntmen’s Association of Motion Pictures (

Limo Should Work Just Fine

Winston has been getting evaluated by his future Kindergarten counselor to ensure he’s ready to make the jump from preschool to Kindergarten. She asked him why he thought people got married and he said, “People get married when they are ready to have babies, I want to have ten babies when I’m married.” The counselor replied, “Wow, ten babies, you’ll need a huge car.” Without hesitation, Winston responded, “I think a limo should work just fine”..

The recommendation is that Winston moves into Kindergarten this Fall, I’m very excited to have him starting school. On another note, I’ve been working on his batting skills and he’s hitting baseballs off a tee. He’s getting better and he seems to like it, so its been fun for the both of us as the weather warms up.

Dalia is totally into shopping and clothing, it is scary. She won’t let me pick out outfits for her (I don’t totally blame her), I didn’t think she’d turn into a diva, but she is. She and Jac spent about 25 minutes in a Claire’s the other day, it was pretty adorable watching them walk out with all their wares in their hands and smiles on their faces.

I have to head out to KC this weekend, I think I’d rather spend a couple days in a local jail cell than in KC over the weekend, but this is very important meeting and I’ll be on the path to good things once it is over.

Wickersham Brothers

I love reading Dr. Seuss to the kids and Winston enjoys all of his books too. We’ve been reading “Horton Hears A Who” lately and there’s a mob on angry monkeys in the book that want to take a spec of dust away from Horton, these angry senseless monkeys are called the Wickersham Brothers. I thought it was an odd name, but never thought much of it until I watched a documentary on prohibition by Ken Burns and they mentioned that there was a Wickersham Commission in the 1920s that was assigned to study the effects of prohibition and while they saw a ton of flaws and it was hurting the country, but they ultimately decided in favor of keeping prohibition. Then on March 2, I was listening to a program that stated it was Dr. Seuss’ birthday. They asked the question, “Why did Dr. Seuss refer to himself as Dr. Seuss?” His real name was Theodor Seuss Geisel, but he was busted drinking gin while he was a student at Dartmouth and the dean made him give up all extracurricular activities (including writing), so he used his middle name (Seuss) as his pen name, so the dean wouldn’t find out that he was still writing for the newspaper. So, it looks like alcohol made quite an impact on Dr. Seuss, who would have known? I suspect Dr. Seuss didn’t see much wrong with enjoying a cocktail or two.

I watched The Descendants this weekend on the plane going to San Francisco, actually made me tear up a little. I guess the woman carrying the baby next to me saw the whole thing, she asked what movie I was watching because it looked like a real tear jerker. It was. I recommend it.

Back In San Fran

Right now I’m at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco. San Francisco has a bunch of fancy old hotels, Washington DC has a bunch of old fancy hotels too. I don’t particularly like old fancy hotels, I’d much rather be in a new average hotel. The Fairmont is perched on top of an enormous hill and if I want to walk in any direction, I have to walk down a crazy steep hill. It is foggy and rainy here and I started to walk down one of the perilously steep hills and I kept thinking the soles of my shiny black shoes were going to lose their grip and I’d go slipping down the hill.

On my flight out here a woman was in the middle seat next to me with a tiny baby in her arms. She asked if I was willing to trade seats with her husband who was also in a middle seat across the aisle. I really considered it, but the two dudes on each side of him looked at me and I could tell they weren’t endorsing the idea. I told her that I didn’t want to squeeze the folks across the aisle and she seemed to understand. Somehow karma didn’t have the baby vomit all over me, it was a very long and uneventful flight.

Softball practice this Sunday. Jac didn’t really seem enthusiastic about me going to practice, but I told her that I’d get some exercise. She said, “You better not just stand around in the outfield zoning off.” She’s my biggest fan.

Boy, I struggle getting used to this Pacific time, it is 3:30PM and I could really use some dinner.

Something About Jac

My sister watched the kids for Jaclyn and I on Saturday night through Sunday afternoon. On Saturday night, Jaclyn and I went to a restaurant in Lambertville called Deanna’s. They make their own pasta on the premises and serve a bunch of other things too. In fact, the waitress read off more specials than there were items on the menu, it probably took her 10 minutes to go through all the specials. Jaclyn has a bad case of menu anxiety under normal circumstances, this threw her off completely. Jaclyn and the waitress discussed the specials at length, here’s a tidbit of the conversation:

Jaclyn: Could you remind of the special with the spinach?
Waitress: Umm…let me see (she checks through her lengthy cheat sheet of available specials), ah yes, the homemade spinach ravioli in a pinenut pesto cream sauce sprinkled with grated artisan cheese and that comes with the house salad featuring Deanna’s special vinaigrette and fresh baked bread.
Jaclyn: Hmmm…what about the special that had the chicken?
Waitress: Yes, the chicken special (desperately trying to locate it on the cheat sheet), ah yes, here it is, the chicken is sauteed with mushrooms in a Gorgonzola cream sauce and comes with the salad and bread.
Jaclyn: I don’t know, I can’t decide, what about that special with the sea bass, I saw someone order that and it looked delicious.
Waitress (also known as most patient person on earth): Yes, that is a Pacific Sea Bass that is…

The dinner was delicious and the best part was being with Jaclyn and catching up on everything, every day I think “I want to marry this woman, oh wait, I am married to her, this is great, I am lucky”

Afterwards we went to a party about the Hunger Games books, I did not know anything about Hunger Games, but they had beer, so it all worked out. Thanks Jay for a great party, we had a lot of fun.

On Sunday morning, Jaclyn and I woke to the most unfamiliar sound, complete silence. It was unbelievable how quiet the house was, we’ve never heard it so silent, it was blissful. We thought about the silence and concluded that we’d start craving the noises of the kids within a day or two and by the early afternoon we were anxious to see the kids.

Jac sewed a skirt for Dalia, I read the paper, we had my ipod on shuffle and heard great songs from all the weird corners of my music collection. The house felt great, it looked great, I said to Jac, “Look at how much progress we made, this house is nearly perfect.” Then I remembered that we need a new French door in the back, we also need to replace the windows, and half of our outlets don’t work so we need the electrician to come and fix them and install the garage door opener (which might as well go on a new garage door), and Jaclyn would love to have our kitchen updated with a new stove and cabinets, our bathroom is pretty tiny and we’d love to have a showed larger than a small phone booth, the hot water in the kids tub doesn’t last longer than 2 minutes, and our chimney needs a new liner installed or else are house will catch on fire. Okay, the house isn’t perfect yet, but it still feels perfect.

Facebook Deactivation

I was getting sick of my Facebook account. At first it was interesting to see how old classmates and colleagues were doing, but then you start to remember why you never hang out with all those people anymore. Last night I deactivated my account and it was pretty funny, it was like a social suicide, with the last thing you see before deactivating is “These friends will miss you” and it shows pictures of your closest friends staring back at you, you can almost hear them say “Don’t do it, you’re too young to leave Facebook!”

I went through with it, I deactivated. Here’s the only place you’ll find me, or possibly in the real world.

Back Pain

Oh my God, I messed up my back. I hate to check my luggage, just can’t stand waiting for it at baggage claim, so I always figure out a way to carry on my stuff. As I was packing for Orlando, I tried to stuff about 5 days of business attire (suits, sport coats, long pants, etc.) in a small duffel bag. Jaclyn watched me jam it into the little bag and told me I was nuts and should just check it in. She cited wrinkled clothing and an extremely heavy carry on bag as two reasons to check a bag. As usual, I ignored her good advice.

As I was going through the airport at Orlando on my way home tonight, I picked up my carry on back and felt something go haywire in my back. It was so painful I nearly fell and my vision blurred for a moment. It was just awful because I still needed to go through security, ride a train shuttle to my gate, then walk about half a mile to get to my gate. Each step was excruciating. I nearly fell over twice and took many breaks to catch my breath.. I am not sure why you run out of breath easily when you are in tons of pain, I was gasping for air. When I boarded the plane, it took all my strength to get the bag into the overhead compartment, I felt like an Olympian holding 400 pounds of weight over my head. My knees started to buckle, I shoved it in, and slid into my seat and breathed some more. 3 hours later when my plane landed, my back wasn’t hurting too bad until I tried to stand up. I immediately realized that I was going to have to let everyone else off the plane and figure this out once it was less crowded.

I was able to get some stability in my legs and then yank the bags out of overhead. I tried to put the shoulder strap on, but that was too much, I had to just drag my bags on the floor, it was pathetic.

As I exited the plane, I began to get anxious about the walk back to my car, which I estimated to be about a mile. I saw a disabled person getting pushed in a wheel chair and considered requesting one myself, then I thought about asking for the electric cart, but I figured I could manage. I used hand rails whenever they were available, pulling myself forward like the lady in the “I’ve Fallen But Can’t Get Up” commercials. I was being passed by elderly women and an airport employee ran into very hard as she was trying to pass me, I seriously almost started to cry.

Orlando was pretty cool, I spent a lot of time in the Peabody Hotel which has these ducks that march on a red carpet into this big sun room and then they climb into a majestic water fountain. I enjoyed the show and loved the ducks, but my favorite moment was when a 3 year old boy that just returned from the Disney theme park with a light saber, nearly managed to whack the duck with his light saber. The duck master stopped him just in the nick of time.

Happy to be home…for now.

Birth Control, You Don’t Have To Use It

This whole political circus around religous institutions being required to have birth control on their health plans is ludicrous. First of all, I haven’t heard one freaking religous institution complain about having birth control on a health plan. Two, if the religious institutions and their members hate birth control so much, just don’t freaking use it. The health care law doesn’t mandate that we all start taking birth control, just don’t freaking use it if you hate it so much. Three, if you’re concerned about paying for something that you’re not going to use, get used to it, that’s what insurance is. I don’t think I’ve seen a doctor or crashed my car in ten years, it didn’t stop me from paying insurance.

This is dumb, move on with your lives.

I have a friend from high school who’s now very religous and he’s always posting anti-abortion stuff on Facebook and it is pretty frightening. I wish that the conversation wasn’t if it should be legal or illegal, and the conversation became, “how can we lower it by 10% over the next decade?” That’s something Democrats and Republicans could unite behind…unless the solution was more access to birth control!

I’m off to Orlando tomorrow. It is sort of a depressing flight because everyone else is usually with their families and they are all so excited to be going to Disney and I’m leaving my family to do work over a weekend. I think the kids and I will pick up a couple games from Target tonight and we’ll cram in some last minute fun before I have to leave.

I had to go to Winston’s school the other day because he is the Star of the Week! Winston and I schemed to put together a book of pictures showing Winston doing adventurous and exciting activities. The whole goal was to bump up Winston’s street cred with his classmates, I think we can say “Mission Accomplished”. My favorite picture is of Winston going down a water slide, you can tell he’s terrified, trying to grasp the sides of the slide to slow his descent, but it wasn’t happening, there was an expression of total panic on his face, I told the class that he loves stuff like this, he eats fear for breakfast (which is exactly what I was saying to him when I forced him to go down the waterslide).