Archive for January 2009


January 27, 2009

My son is obsessed with balls.  At about 10 months old, he discovered a basketball at daycare and it was soon obvious that balls were his preferred method of play.  He plays with other things, but the day always starts and ends with a ball.  I get him a new ball every chance I get and his focus is incredible.  Ball was one of the first real words he learned and the one he uses with extreme frequency for every occasion.  He can spot a ball at 50 paces, even out in the yard covered in snow.  “Ball!”  He screams, “BALL!”  It is getting to be a little annoying as we try to teach him other words, but Ball seems to express it all.  And yes, he is preoccupied by his own balls during every diaper change.  He gets kind of a glassy grin on his face as he reaches for his area.  Sasha says he only does it because I react, but it never gets old when he reaches down there and says: “Ball!”





January 25, 2009

It is snowing again.

And we’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet

January 23, 2009

I am not going to do a year-end re-cap of 2008, because nothing happened that compared to the thrill-ride of 2007I will however, give a summary of the month of December, which presented its own set of challenges. 


The month of December was a lesson in dealing with snow, snow and more snow.  Each winter, we might get about an inch of snow that usually is all melted away by the next day.  This year it kept dumping down and piled up in a big, sloppy white mess totaling more than 2 feet and lasted for most of the month.  Maybe that does not sound like that much to you, but you might live in a place that knows how to prepare for such a situation with snow plows at the ready, salt & gravel trucks poised to make the streets safe.  The city of Seattle virtually fell apart.  The streets were thick with compacted, icy snow.  I live in a funny secret neighborhood, which is right off the freeway, but nestled away enough from society that, had Seattle had more than 6 working plows at a time, they would not think to come plow us anyway.  We also live just enough north and just close enough to the convergence zone that we happened to get more snow than most of the city.


Sasha’s Mother & brother were visiting for the holidays from Wisconsin (to escape the winter, haha), and luckily they knew how to drive in the stuff, because I sure did not. I could barely walk in it as I totally did a face plant in the road after slipping on my way to the mailbox.  The good news was that work was canceled for me for almost a week; the bad news was we were virtual prisoners.  We were supposed to go out to a 5 star restaurant for our Christmas dinner, but we could not safely make the drive.  Luckily the in-laws were able to fly out OK.  By the end of it, I was getting pretty stir crazy and once the snow started to melt, I decided to try and drive to the local movie theater to see the Brad Button movie.  The streets were lousy with slush, ice and giant boulders of wadded up frozen snow, so I promptly got stuck.  I had to abandon my car and walk back home making a more-skilled Sasha retrieve the vehicle.  Stubbornly, I tried again the next day and made it!  I lacked the forethought that by the time the film ended it would be dark making the scary streets that much more dangerous and of course I also forgot my cell phone.  Somehow I survived it.




Even though we just hosted Christmas for family we decided to also have a New Years Eve party for our friends.  The yard still had a foot of snow in it, but the streets were finally safe again.  The theme was: “Your Grandma’s New Year’s Eve party”. We donned party hats, served comfort foods and I made Krumkake, a Swedish cookie made with a special iron I received for Christmas. 




We celebrated the East Coast New years and pretended that 9:00pm was midnight, so we could all get to bed at a decent hour.  We toasted to the end of the holiday season and the mass melting of snow turned flood, sang Auld Lang Syne and had one giant group kiss at “midnight”.  Hurrah!


January 20, 2009

My hope was to get to my office building this morning before 9:00 am Pacific time so I could catch the inauguration on the TV that is in the coffee shop in my office building lobby.  I have TiVo set to record, but that would not be the same.  I had a vision of watching the swearing in with a room full of strangers and then we all embrace and wipe each others tears.  My alarm clock had other plans as it did not go off, so I woke up on the late side.  Then traffic was alarmingly slow as the fog monster continues to terrorize the city.  I was listening to the events on the radio and got to hear the religious guy and then Aretha. I did have tears in my eyes, but they had been there for most of the weekend.  I even cried while watching my recording of Desperate Housewives, even though it was just a filler episode. Just as Biden was getting sworn in, the clock turned to 9:00 am and the radio show I was listening to went off the air.  I was just pulling into the parking garage, so I zipped down the 4 levels to my spot as fast as I could.  I grabbed the gallon of Non-Fat milk I bought for the office kitchen and flew up to my office.  I wanted to turn on my light so my boss would know I was at least in the vicinity.  I then hit the down elevator button fifty times to make the elevator get there faster.  Just as I predicted, there was a large crowd in the coffee shop all facing the large screen TV.  Holy shit, I was exactly on time; I did not miss it.  I scooted in as far as I could to make room for the other late arrivers and exchanged excited smiles.  I dug my finger nail into my palm while repeating my mantra in my mind: Don’t cry, Don’t cry, Don’t cry.  Then Obama choked up and that was it for me, I was spilling tears in a room full of people I did not know.  When the swearing in was complete, there was no group hug, but the room erupted in applause and that was good enough for me.




January 17, 2009

Most of the time I carry my money wadded up in a ball inside my pants or coat pocket and carry my credit and debit cards around loosely in the same fashion.  It is not unusual for me to suddenly realize I lost a twenty dollar bill or, by the same token, find one floating around in the washing machine like free money.


Today when I was waiting at a downtown crosswalk, I pulled my hand out of my pocket and out flew a wad of one dollar bills.  It was blustery and there was a crowd of people waiting next to me, so before I could get to the fallen money or even yell: MINE, a young boy scuttled after it and cheered the prize to his mother.  I could not very well grab it back out of his little hands now could I?


January 12, 2009



8:05 p.m. – J.Lo in a gold lame version of that green dress she wore 10 years ago where she has to tape her boobs in.  I think she is trying to recapture her heyday.  Award for best supporting actress in a movie drama to The Reader’s Kate Winslet!  Yay! I have loved her since her debut in ‘Heavenly Creatures’.


8:06 p.m. – SHIT!  Sting just scared me with his darkness.


8:09 p.m. – Bruce Springsteen, gets the best original song award for “The Wrestler” for the film of the same name. Pretty cool. “This is going to be the only time I’m in competition with Clint Eastwood. Felt pretty good too.”  Clint just scowled back with that Clint scowl of his.


8:15 p.m. – Rumer Willis is Miss Golden Globe. The red hair was a mistake.


8:16 p.m. – Tom Wilkinson gets best supporting actor on TV for the John Adams miniseries. He rocked the role as Ben Franklin although I was hoping Neil Patrick Harris would win.


8:20 p.m. – Laura Dern nabs the supporting actress award for her role as scary Florida Katherine whatserface in Recount.


8:25 p.m. – Dan Cheadle has no hair.  Cohen Brothers never hired me either, Don.


8:28 p.m. – Hollywood Foreign Press Association keeps it short and sweet.


8:29 p.m. – Hayden Panettiere & Zac Efron present for Best Performance by an Actor In A Television Series – Drama: C’MON Hugh Laurie!!!!! Oh well, Gabriel Byrne.  He is not even there, but he might be sick.


8:30 p.m. – The new Captain Kirk, Chris Pine, who was in that awful good luck bad luck movie with Lindsay Lohan and villain-from-heroes-turned-new-Spock, Zachary Quinto announce Anna Paquin wins the best actress in a TV drama for playing the psychic Sookie Stackhouse in love with a vampire in HBO’s True Blood. Why is everybody going blond?  If everyone else is blond why do you want to be blond, too.


8:36 p.m. – Ricky Gervais RULES!  Hilariously references his show Extras, saying, “Winslet, I told you. Do a Holocaust movie and win an award.”  


8:39 p.m. – The Jonas brothers look northing alike, but then they also look exactly alike. Wall-E wins for best animated.  I just put it on my Netflix queue.


8:42 p.m. – I always find it funny that Johnny Depp comes to these things, but I am glad he does.  Sally Hawkins wins for her comedy leading role in Happy-Go-Lucky. Why is there no podium?  At first I thought she was all out of it, but she was just overcome with winning.  Emma Thomson almost came up and finished her speech for her.  She loves EVERYBODY!


8:56 p.m. – John Adams wins for best TV miniseries. I had no idea Tom Hanks was involved.


8:57 p.m. – Demi Moore totally embarrasses Rumer in front of the entire world by telling her not to hunch.  I half wanted Rumer to throw down the statue and run off the stage crying.


8:59 p.m. – Heath Ledger gets a standing ovation for his posthumous win for playing the Joker from The Dark Knight. Director Christopher Nolan says some heartfelt words and tears brim around the audience.


9:08 p.m. – Caught the coke reference from Colin Farrell.  Waltz With Bashir wins Israel the best foreign language film.


9:12 p.m. – Laura Linney wins for her leading role in the HBO miniseries, John Adams.  Her death bed scene had me in a puddle.


9:20 p.m. – Slumdog Millionaire wins Simon Beaufoy for best motion picture screenplay.


9:23 p.m. – Alec Baldwin nabs the best actor in a comedy award for 30 Rock. Makes Rumer feel better by sharing a sweet memory of her.  Shout out to Ireland.


9:30 p.m. – An earlier shot Renee Zellweger’s hair actually startled me.  Now I am startled for a different reason.  The dress is sucking the life out of her like a Boa Constrictor.


9:32 p.m. – Paul Giamatti continues the John Adams sweep for playing the man himself in the miniseries. DON’T SMOKE!


 9:36 p.m. – 30 Rock wins for best comedy series! I love you, Tina.  Tracy Morgan explains that he and Fey had an agreement: if Barack Obama won, he would speak for the show from now on. “I am the face of post-racial America. Deal with it, Cate Blanchett!”


9:44 p.m. – Kate Beckinsale & Diddy. I just read where he says he does not use towels but has full body air dryers in his bathroom. They hand the best score award to A.R. Rahman for Slumdog Millionaire.


9:47 p.m. – David Duchovny is doing his best to get back together with his wife after they separated post stint in rehab for sex addiction.  I wish him well.


9:48 p.m. – Tina Fey wins best actress!


9:55 p.m. – Martin Scorsese presents the Cecil B. DeMille/lifetime achievement award to Steven Spielberg. The film montage makes me realize how much his films has bullet pointed my whole life.  I burst into tears when I see the little girl in the red coat from Schindler’s List.


10:13 p.m. – Did Emma Thompson just almost fall down?  I love her anyway.


10:14 p.m. – Danny Boyle is your best director for Slumdog Millionaire. I love most of his films, especially Shallow Grave.


10:19 p.m. – Sandra Bullock presents best actor-comedy nominees.  I will always like her since seeing her in person while she was filming The Net in SF.  Surprisingly, Collin Ferrell wins.  Luckily I have Closed Caption or I would not have understood a word.


10:30 p.m. – Vicky Cristina Barcelona wins for best movie comedy. It comes out on Video in a few weeks.  I will see it for the referenced painting ladies scene.


10:32 p.m. – What are Kate Winslet and Tom Cruise going on about?  It would be so fun to be there and be like: Which fellow star am I going to talk to at the break?  But I would not have thought these two would be drawn together.


10:37 p.m. – Hey Mark Wahlberg, say hi to your mother for me.


10:39 p.m. – Kate Winslet wins for the second time tonight for Best Actress.  It is her night.  I guess if you don’t ever win, might as well win everything all at once!  I hope her and Leo get married.


10:44 p.m. – Best Television Series – Drama: Come on HOUSE!  Shoot, Mad Men wins.  I have never seen it.  Now it is my turn to space out during the speech.


10:50 p.m. – Whoa!  Mickey Rourke wins for Best Actor.  I am surprised, but I would have been very sad for him if he did not win.  He needed this.  He also wins the award for the best speech featuring the word: BALLS!  And I think Aronofsky just gave him the finger.


11 p.m. – Best picture/drama, goes to Slumdog Millionaire. They sweep it!  A love letter to Mumbai.  What a great way to end the night, especially when producer Christian Colson’s mouths the word “FUCK!” as he starts to get played off. Everybody looked almost flawless, but I have never seen so many one-shoulder dresses in one place!


January 7, 2009

I had every intention of posting something by now, but I got a nasty assty mother fucked up virus on my work computer last week.  It was so bad it literally ate my entire hard drive in one giant, crunchy bite, leaving only a useless keyboard dangling from it’s mighty, slobbering jaws.  It has truly thrown me off kilter and nothing will be the same again.  The company is currently building me a new computer, so I am basically bouncing around to any available office trying to get work done and it sucks.  I am hopeful life will normalize soon and I will be back to regale you with fascinating stories about the weather, but until then I hope this old photo of me & my friend, J, will tied you over: