Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Front Seat...

My son is now 9 years old and a whopping 62 pounds.  I don't know what the state law says about riding in the front seat of a vehicle, but I do know that his mother wants him to ride in the back at all times.  Well, normally I comply with her wishes and during drop off and pick up at various functions, our conversation goes something like:
"How was school today?"
"Learn anything new?"
"How was math?"
"What did you do?"
"I don't remember"

This past week, picking him up after basketball practice, I let him sit in the front seat of the truck.  He proceeded to tell me about his day without being prompted, then he explained where he wanted to live and how he was going to pay for it, and what kind of car he was going to have when he got older.  I don't know if it was solely because he was in the front seat with me and we could converse without looking in the mirror, but it was nice to hold a conversation with him, without him being on the ipad or telling me he doesn't remember.  Maybe he was just in the mood to talk, but I think he will be riding the front seat a little more often from now on.

Friday, January 6, 2017


Well, our family lost a member today.  Samantha Cat has now gone to a better place.

After being sick for a day or two, I began to see the signs, but it hadn't quite dawned on Marlina.  We discussed this and decided to send her to the vet, but at the same time, trying to prep the kids for the worst news.  This morning it was diagnosed that she had complete liver failure and wasn't processing anything.  It was just a matter of time.  We choose to do the humane thing.  That doesn't make it any easier on the family.

She was a good cat who never liked to be held, but was always ready with a purr.  She would scratch you and claw you and piss on your sheets, but she would jump up on my lap anytime. 

She will be missed.

RIP Sam.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Twas the week before Chrismas....

Saw this today and couldn't help but feel this is spot on...

Well, Marlina had her annual "I don't think we have enough gifts for the kids" moment last night.  That means today I get to have my annual, "Fuck it, just buy more stuff" moment.  I usually go out and spend another $200-$300 today and royally manage to screw up our budget.  Or, in reality, my budget that I only kept in my head and didn't share with her but I still manage to get pissed when she goes over the amount that I didn't tell her about.

Anyways, Merry Christmas everybody!!  As much as I bitch about the money part, these are some of the best days of the year because it causes me to think of others more than myself.  I enjoy shopping part of the Christmas season.  I think I give good gifts.  I could be way off base; it is possible.  But I think I give pretty good presents. 

Three more days to go.......

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Party on Christmas Eve??

When I was a kid, I remember going to church on Christmas Eve, lighting the candle and singing, then heading home to race into bed so that Santa would come.  Well, it came as a shock to me that my wife said Christmas Eve was a huge party when she was growing up.  She and her family would go to church, complete with the Catholic 500 (a nickname I gave to the practice of getting up for communion, receiving the gifts, then instead of returning to your seat, you hit the exit door), then she would return to her house where upon all the family friends would appear and the party would last into the night complete with lots of food, booze, and merriment.  The kids would eventually be put to bed, but the party wouldn't stop.

Fast forward a bunch of years.  When Marlina and I got together and we were preparing to spend our first Christmas together, of course there was some culture shock on my part when she would describe the annual Christmas Eve bash.  We were both living in the city then, surrounded by friends who never needed a reason for a party.  I was in.  If it made my future wife happy, I did it.  And, of course, I am the guy who has been know to say that "Tuesday only happens once a week; you had better celebrate it."

We threw our first annual Christmas Eve party on 12/24/2003.  We have been going strong ever since Some years the attendance is larger than others, but we decided that it is pretty nice to gather with family and friends before Santa comes down the chimney.  Ours may not last as long as the ones that Marlina grew up with, but they do seem to give her a memory of her past that she cherishes.  And what an important part of the Christmas holidays that is.

And besides, Christmas Eve only comes once a year, you had better celebrate it!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

The Periscope App

The Periscope App is amazing.  It is a live streaming service that lets users film events and stream them to others.  You could just use the video on your phone, but then you are left with a gigantic video file that you usually cannot email to others due to the size.  You could post them to YouTube, but they too have file size restrictions.  Periscope allows you to film the events, and stream them to anyone in real time.  In the past year, I have watched my kids at various sporting events and school events because Marlina used Periscope.  I can be in my office working and she is at the Spelling Bee.  I was able to watch Luke spell his word correctly, then get back to work.  I also watched his first basketball practice this way last night.  Of course, me overthinking things, leads me to ask the question, "Is this good?"

I mean, I am able to watch these events, but I am not present when they are taking place.  I can discuss the events with him when I get home in the evening, but he cannot look over and see my face.  As long as I am present for the mega important events I think I am fine, but at what point does technology make it too easy for me to say, just Periscope it and I can both work and be a good father? 

But besides my trivial bull shit, just imagine what an app like this does for people in the military who are away in another country.  They can now watch their kids even while away.  They can take part in the events, and at least feel like they were somewhat present.  It truly is amazing.  I know there are probably different apps that do the same thing, but I use Periscope and am pretty happy with it.

Ok, enough of a commercial for a product that I don't even have any stock in. 

BTW, we picked up the new golf cart on Saturday.  It is pretty sweet.

Friday, December 2, 2016

New toy! Almost

Well, I am about to pull the trigger on a new golf cart.  I usually am a slow and methodical person when it comes to making large purchases except when surfing the interwebs while drinking.  A while back Marlina and I had some company in and wanted to take them for a cruise around the island.  We had to take turns because the kids are too young to be left alone so they had to come with us.  Marlina would take the visiting lady and give her a tour of the island, then I took my friend around.  This would be a lot better if we could all go at the same time, we agreed.  Seeing as how we don't want to wait a few more years till the kids are old enough to stay home alone, we decided we would "look into" selling our golf cart and upsizing.

Usually this means that we will discuss it for a bit, then decide that I don't want to spend the money and we would revisit it again after I get pissed off about not having enough room on cart.  However, this time, I found a buyer for our blue golf cart, which was a necessary first step.  I am adamant about doing things in order and selling the old one before purchasing the new one is imperative.  Step one, complete.  Now finding the new one and making it have everything we want should be fun.  Stay tuned for the adventure (and pictures).

But for now, we say good bye to Bluefoot, or Old Blue (we could never really decide on a good nickname).

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

My dad

A little while ago, my father turned 70.  18 months ago to be exact.  My mother asked me to write a little something about this.  That was all the direction I had.  Well, I let it slip my mind and got busy with work and family and I didn't get around to doing it.  Well, I started it, but never finished it.  I will, I know, but for now, I want to share a story about my dad that just popped into my head.

When I was a kid, I loved wrestling.  Not the fireworks shooting WWE stuff that is on Monday nights nowadays, but rather the rough and tough Mid South wrestling and WCCW that we used to have here in Houston on Saturday nights at the Sam Houston Coliseum. 
I would watch every weekend, buy all the books and magazines I could find, buy all toys, and attend matches on special occasions.  Some of my favorites were Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Jake the Snake, The Rock N Roll Express, and the Von Erichs. 

In 1985, I was 9 years old.  Pizza Inn ran a promotion that if you buy a pizza, you get a free poster of the Von Erichs.  I knew I just had to have those posters.  My dad took me up to Pizza Inn on a Sunday night to obtain my prize.  When we got there, I was ecstatic.  They had the posters mounted up on the wall for all to see and to, no doubt, encourage you to buy a pizza.  My dad ordered the pizza and I instructed him to ask about the posters.  "I am sorry, but we are all out of posters," the man's voice said as I tried to hold back tears.  I remember trying to take disappointment like a grown up, but I have no recollection if I was successful or not.  I slunk off to the corner of the restaurant to be alone while my father waited for the pizza.  I was floored.  I was devastated.  I watched as my father said something to the man behind the counter, who nodded.  I then watched as that man went and got a ladder and began to remove the poster that had been hanging on the wall.  I wiped my tears away and started grinning when they rolled up the poster and handed it to me.  To this day, I don't know what my dad said to the man behind the counter, or if he even remembers this event happening.  I don't remember if I even said thank you to my dad.  I don't have that poster any more, and I am positive that even if I did, I wouldn't want it hanging up in my house.  But I will always have the memory of my dad doing this for me.