Saturday, December 27, 2008

Whom do you love?

We're with Scott and Carlie in Austin for Christmas. Two related stories from our Texas Boxing Day:

1. Owen woke up early on the 26th and began calling for Mommy. When that didn't work after a dozen tries, he called for Daddy a few times. When that didn't work either, he called for Santa.

2. Owen was hanging out with Uncle Scott while I spent a few minutes gathering up dirty clothes. When the Young Gentleman caught sight of me with the basket of clothes on my hip, he brightly smiled and happily cried, "Laundry!"

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


From Overthinking It, a pop culture blog, 40 inspirational movie speeches in two minutes.

I laughed out loud when I first watched it and was pleased that I recognized the majority of the sources. (Oh man, I just laughed out loud again, watching the video to make sure the embed worked.)

William, Overthinking It may be for you. You might want to start with The Philosophy of Batman: Schopenhauer Edition.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The fifth dimension... found!

It so happens that a large box of Cheerios can actually be a gateway to the land of the lost (peppercorns). However, it seems a different portal is required to access the dimension in which letter-openers are sequestered.

(I know, I know, why on earth was a toddler allowed to handle a letter-opener? Choose two of three:
a) He's quick.
b) I'm a bad parent.
c) 'bout time the boy started earning his keep 'round here. Least he could do is sort the mail.)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The case of the missing peppercorns

Last Sunday, Owen was exploring the pantry and found a large container of peppercorns. A bit bigger than a coke can, it was plastic and made a pleasing rattle when shaken. The lid was secure, so I let him play with it while I made our grocery list. Within a minute, he had stopped playing with the peppercorns and, instead, stashed them in some hypothetical dimension that is orthogonal to height, width and depth. At least that's what I conclude. He made those peppercorns disappear without a trace. I don't think he ever left the area, and I've checked the floor and bottom shelf of the pantry, and the neighboring cabinets. The peppercorns are gone.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Automaker bailout

Listening to the descriptions of the bailout for GM and Chrysler - at this time, just a notional agreement between Congressional Democrats and the White House, neither House nor Senate having voted on anything yet - it's sounding like pseudo-Chapter 11: limits on spending and dividends; obligations on labor to renegotiate; the "Car Czar"* as faux-bankruptcy judge; government as new, preferred equity. Not knowing any more about such things, it's begging the question to me: why is this being done via bespoke, ad hoc legislation, instead of in the well-established framework of Chapter 11? Could it be that the powers-that-be are just too proud to admit that Angus was right?

* Aside: Will Wilkinson had a nice bit on "czars" in the US government on NPR about a month ago.

Looking at the world through rose-colored eyes

It's an overcast morning in DC. On the train in, around dawn, I looked out the window and was surprised to see that the clouds had turned dusty, rosy pink. All of them, in all directions, giving the whole outside world an odd tint, like an old photo, if old photos lavendered instead of yellowed. The world inside the train remained a familiar, fluorescent-tube white.

Curious O

One of the Young Gentleman's more endearing traits is his unrestrained curiosity. When something interests him - and much does - he LOOKS at it. He peers at it, getting as close to it as he can. (In some cases, I feel this must be counter-productive, unless he has some sort of macro-lensed third eye on the bridge of his nose.) If the object of interest is under a piece of furniture or in a box, he unabashedly bends over or gets down on the floor to really see it. It's really cute.