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|Sunday, June 19th, 2011|
|LB - Riding high
The little guy recently found the courage to ride his mountain bike and we've been taking regular short rides. Today we took the longest one yet, a little over 6.5 miles up around Balboa Park and back. He's still got a little trouble getting going and tends to wobble a lot when he gets distracted, but he's doing really well. A little more practice and he'll be solid. His top speed was about 13mph and we averaged a little over 7. We were out for just under an hour. Next time we'll probably do the loop around Lake Balboa.
|Thursday, February 3rd, 2011|
|In the cold North
The lovely wife is out of town for the weekend to jury a physics competition (hint, gravity wins, gravity always wins), so my mind is a bit on travel. Then Craig Ferguson posted this on twitter:
I find myself more amused than I would have expected... Current Mood: amused
|Sunday, October 3rd, 2010|
For the hobbit handful of you who read my rare blatherings and not Judy's, a reminder that this Friday is Second Friday, our monthly gathering for good company, gaming, eats (the new grill is up and running and is a verra nice). Food or drink to share is appreciated. If you've got a game you're itching to play, bring it (at the very least LB can always be talked into playing just about any new game, but we usually have a number of people up for a game).
We usually say 6pm until people get tired and go home. I'll probably be here most of the day if you're headed over earlire, though. Let us know if you're coming so we can have meat to grill (and if you don't eat meat, let us know so we can have other things!)
|Friday, July 16th, 2010|
I'm looking for ideas for keeping a child entertained for a long series of car rides. I'm looking for a mix of stuff he can do by himself and interactive stuff with his parents. We'll have access to a laptop and maybe an iPod Touch, so things for those that don't require net access would be OK, but I'm looking for non-digital stuff as well.
For anyone who doesn't know LB, he's 7 but plays board games for adults just fine (his current favorite is Betrayal at the House on the Hill, but he's also fond of Pandemic, Risk, Small World, etc...) reads well, but probably won't read enough to keep him occupied a lot of the time.
|Thursday, April 15th, 2010|
|Wednesday, January 20th, 2010|
|RPGs for Haiti
A number of the smaller publishers in the RPG industry have gotten together with the people who run RPGNow.com and DriveThruRPG to put together a benefit bundle for Haiti relief. They're donating 100% of the purchase price to Doctors Without Borders
One of the publishers has put a (nearly complete, as more are being added) list in his post: http://simonjrogers.livejournal.com/122714.html
The site's a little loaded right now (don't expect to be able to download the PDFs right away and it may take a bit longer to place the order), but it's a good deal for you (even if you just peek at some of the small press RPGs and see what's going on in that world) and benefits a good organization. Here's the link: http://www.rpgnow.com/product_info.php?products_id=78023&SRC=haiti
|Wednesday, August 5th, 2009|
So, as if I weren't already aware that Fox News is biased in their reporting, I just got a poll call from them. Now, I've done opinion surveys with Gallup and Nielsen and several other less well know pollsters and I can tell when the poll wants a certain response (in particular a "push" poll sponsered by Gov. Schwartzenegger's office run by a group I hadn't heard of before.) Never have I heard one so completely biased as this. The staffer came informed me that they were going to ask me an opinion question about Obama after I heard a message about him from one of their anchors (I can't remember which one and I'm not going to brave their website to find the name). I listened to the message which was completely negavitve, stated conjecture and opinion as fact (such as "the stimulus package has completely failed to do anything but stimiulate the growth of the federal government" and "Withour a doubt, Obama is the most liberal president we've ever had'), then passed me back to the staffer(after promising me a copy of his book, a sure sign of fair and balanced poling.). She asked something to the effect of "After hearing that message, do you believe that Obama is off track?" I answered no and it sounded like there were more questions, but I commented that the poll seemed a little biased and she thanked me and hung up.
I don't know if I'll get my promised book.
|Saturday, June 20th, 2009|
|Thursday, June 18th, 2009|
|Fairest of them all.
Now that I'm done loaning the most beautiful and talented physics teacher to the world of education, we get her back tomorrow! Here she is being "Unprofessional"
|Saturday, June 13th, 2009|
|The Single Dad experiment
With Judy gone for a little over a week, I get to be a single dad for a little bit. Really, it's not so bad, considering I have the most wonderful, cooperative and generally helpful son I could ask for. Also, there's some cheating involved, since Judy made all the arrangements for day care while I work, all I have to do is drop him off and pick him up. It helps that we have a lot of friends and family willing to take him for a day.
Today was no work at all. He let me sleep in, fed himself breakfast and played games on Judy's computer and the PS3 (a couple of Flash games he was introduced to at "faculty camp" on the PC and an old PS2 racing/crashing game called Burnout 2 on the PS2, at which he is, not surprisingly, much better than me. We have similar styles of driving, except he crashes less.) After I got up and played a few races with him (I won one, then he won one and I finished dead last - can't handle the muscle car.) and we made out plan for the day. After some discussion it was Miniature Golf (his favorite kind of golf, he informs me) at the Castle in Sherman Oaks, then to the Zoo.
36 holes of theoretically unscored play (though he informed me after each hole if we birdied or bogied and after a while he decided that anything over tripple bogey didn't count) later, we were tied 1-1 (he decided he was going to count Eagles), we had lunch, played some air hockey, skee-ball and arcade style basketball then headed out for the zoo.
At the zoo, he declared in the parking lot that he wanted to get a map, though, since we're members, he already has a pretty good idea where everything is. Today, it seems, was not about the animals. It was about the map. For the first half hour or so while were there, he walked everywhere with the map opened in front of him, stopping occasionally to check our position and confirm our route. After the first waypoint (the new location of the LA Choo Choo) he handed me the map, but still frequently consulted it. He then routed us up to the play area, but when we arrived, he declared it too crowded (Who'd have thought that MY son would avoid crowds...) and he plotted a new route. We ended up doing the whole loop of the zoo, but only watched animals in passing, though we spent a couple of minutes at the giraffes, the little one is really cute.
Back at the ole homestead we played a game of basketball. After a little bit, I started playing with just my left hand (I suspect my left shoulder will not be happy with me in the morning) and he eventually triumphed 28-27.
He played some more Burnout while I made dinner, then we ate together and got him ready for bed. A puzzle and a book later he was out (so was I).
All in all a good day. Tomorrow has swim class, a visit to LA Live Steamers, some house hunting and dinner with my family on the docket.
|Wednesday, June 10th, 2009|
|Yay for public debate
I have to say I've been impressed by Colbert this week from Iraq, if only for the fact that he's being allowed to humorously take on a number of issues which the military might consider touchy. To whit (after 41's bit):
|Monday, May 25th, 2009|
Just finished gregvaneekhout
s novel Norse Code. Damn fine writing there. There's a few minor pacing issues, but that's to be expected from a short story master making the transition to novel writing. Overall, the story is compelling, the characters well drawn and the mythos coherent. The downhill ride of the third act is a rush. Highly recommended even if the author hadn't spent an evening racing around some of the scenery in the book in my car dressed as a pirate.
|Sunday, March 1st, 2009|
|Sunday, February 8th, 2009|
|Wednesday, December 10th, 2008|
|Tuesday, November 11th, 2008|
|Tuesday, October 21st, 2008|
This past weekend was homecoming at my High School (aka, my wife's work and my son's elementary school...) and was chock full of activities.
I started off with the Alumni Poker Tournament, which was structured to maximize fundraising with little regard to creating a fair tournament. I lasted through about a half dozen re-buys at my table before going all-in with top pair and losing out to a flush. The main problem with the structure of unlimited re-buys (actually, you couldn't buy if you were over the starting stack, but you could buy in half starting stack increments at any time during the first few rounds of play.) at the break, they had a truly unlimited rebuy. I saw people dump in quite a hefty sum at that point. I have no idea if the winners were among the heavy buyers or not (I know the guy who placed 3rd wasn't, but other than that, I don't know.) I still had a good time, saw a bunch of old alums I knew (though my class, being an ebb tide of school spirit, had no one but myself there all weekend...)
Saturday was the homecoming carnival and the football and volleyball games against the hated rivals of Tartan Hall (name changed to protect the innocent, but they know who they are). I believe it was a clean sweep (I didn't see the JV volleyball game, so I'm not 100% sure on that) despite a valliant effort by the TH Varsity defence (the offence and special teams kept turning the ball over in awkard positions) who had their team ahead at the half. The TH Girls Volleyball team went down in 4 games with an impressive stand in the 3rd holding on to a 30-28 win, before being soundly beaten in the fourth.
LB had a blast at the carnival, roughousing with the bigger kids in the bouncy house, repeatedly dunking the poor senior in the dunk tank (the other seniors working the booth kindly let him push in the target if he managed to hit it. His throwing arm's getting there...) and, of course, watching his dad make an utter fool of himself in the alumni flag football game.
Which brings us to the 6th Annual Alumni Flag Football Game. In the past, I've been smart enough to leave this one alone, but for some reason I decided that, since I was going to be there anyway, I would play. Now, I wasn't exactly a good football player in high school and I believe I was the smallest, and without question oldest by almost a decade, player out there. But, hey, it's just flag football, right? Well, it's a pretty aggressive version of flag(though the referees were doing a good job of keeping it from getting too bad), but I did pretty much get run over (I was playing line on both sides of the ball). Somehow their team got more of the bigger and more atheletic players but no QB (their team included one, "honorary" alumnus, former track Olympian...), and our team sustained all the injuries including one play where the two defensive linemen forgot the old adage "meet at the quarterback" and met at the guard(me) and I got rolled over pretty good. Still, we won 12-6, LB had a blast watching us (he commented during our halftime break that I hadn't touched the ball, but I did catch a pass for a pretty good gain in the second half) and I had a great time. I couldn't really move smoothly Sunday and I'm still a little twingy, but no lasting injury so it's say it was a net positive. Current Mood: Stiff
|Saturday, October 4th, 2008|
|It worked in Sweeden
A couple of links for those not yet ready to explode from the financial fun.
This American Life did another episode on the financial situation where they do a pretty good job of explaining what is happening and why. I haven't heard the whole thing yet, but the part I listened to on the way home last night helped me understand why any one of these giant institutions failing would have made such a mess for all the rest:http://www.thislife.org/Radio_Episode.aspx?episode=365
"Another Frightening Episode About the Economy." If it helps you, you might also want to listen to the "Giant Pool of Money" episode which is done by the same correspondents and is linked off the page for this one.
Fidelity Investments sent out this analysis of the "not a bailout" http://personal.fidelity.com/misc/framesets/iwarticle.shtml?pagename=IW080929govtrescue&fca_id=20084343p01
I'm looking for a full listing of all the provisions (sweeteners) which got added to the bill. The tax stuff is getting the most attention, but I understand they stuck such things as Mental Healt Parity (which could have a big impact on my future profession) in there.
|Monday, September 29th, 2008|
Ran across this at wickedthought
s journal and thought it deserved to be spread more widely. I'm sure most of you will recognize the passage and it's source. It's put to excellent use here.
|Thursday, September 25th, 2008|
|The great bailout as viewed by John Stewart, et al.
If you haven't seen tonight's Daily Show, they opened with a side by side comparison of the Case for War and last night's Case for Bailout. Hint, they're almost the same speech, both devoid of specifics and long on fearmongering.
In the second segment they cherry pick idiotic statements from Paulson and Bernanke from the Congressional Hearings.
Along the way John Stewart took the time to go through the timeline following John McCain's suspension of his campaign and actual going to washington, amongst other things.
Last night he had President Clinton on, also worth watching, especially if you're an Obama booster, but he went through a series of alternate proposals for dealing with the current situation which all made a lot more sense to me than "bailout the big banks".
As a side note, the best theory I've heard for the real reason for the suspension of the McCain campaign is to derail the VP debate (the capper to the campaign's attempts to keep her from speaking on record or on camera), since their proposed rescheduling date for Tomorrow's debate is to the date of the VP debate...