Friday, March 26, 2010

Zombie attacks: The perfect way to reassess your priorities. (Sweetie's Hunk of the Week, 55)

It's 6:32 am on Saturday morning. I'm listening to The Housemartins and wondering what I can possibly say about Hunk 55:

Ty Burrell!

You Don't Know Him Without You Have watched Modern Family or Dawn of The Dead, in each of which Ty Burrell has somehow managed to play the exact same person without either character being, actually, the same kind of person.

Ty played "that one guy who you just know is gonna get killed" in Dawn of the Dead, a movie Sweetie and I saw when we went on a fun but terribly exhausting and hunger-inducing vacation to Washington D.C. about 5 years ago. While it was a great weekend, in that we got away from everything and saw a bunch of sights, it also had the downside of involving far too much walking -- that part was my fault, as I tried to get Sweetie to see everything I'd seen in Washington when I'd lived there, the problem being that I had lived there for five months, while Sweetie and I were there for 72 hours or so. We ended up riding the Metro and walking from sight to sight on an exhausting marathon of tourism.

The second problem was that there's no place to eat in Washington. We stayed right downtown, not far from the White House, and there were literally no restaurants anywhere near us. There were no stores anywhere near us. There was no food anywhere near us. At one point, I went out to get breakfast for Sweetie and had to walk 7 blocks to find a McDonald's. Restaurants were so scarce that we mostly lived on the bag of candy Sweetie'd bought on the first day we were there.

While most of the weekend was spent tired and sore and hungry (and sightseeing), part of the weekend was spent at a movie theater watching Dawn of the Dead, in which Ty Burrell (remember him? He's why I'm writing this:

after all).(And, yes, technically, the above picture is inside that parentheses.)

(I believe that's a first: a parenthetical picture. I'm always the trendsetter.)

In Dawn Of The Dead, Ty Burrell played a guy who's name I can't remember,

but that doesn't matter, because how often, anyway, does the name of a character in a movie matter? Not very often. I can only think of one, really: Indiana Jones, and that's only because his name was occasionally in the title of his movies, so if the character wasn't named Indiana Jones, it would've been weird.

Even then, the name of the character didn't matter; those movies could've been called Harrison Ford And The Temple Of Doom, and it wouldn't have really changed things. In four movies, they only referred once to why Indy was called Indy, and then didn't explain why he'd taken the name of the dog (or why the dog was called Indiana.)

So Ty Burrell played Ty Burrell in Dawn Of The Dead, and he plays Ty Burrell as Phil, in Modern Family, and somehow, they're the same character even though Ty Burrell-but-not-Phil in Dawn of the Dead was this sort of effete, martini-drinking, arch character and Ty-Burrell-Phil on Modern Family is nothing like that, at all, only he is, and here's why:

I like to think of actor's roles as actually having been their lives -- so looking at a given actor, you can imagine that his life actually went that way, following the same arc and lives that his or her characters have.

Sometimes that works pretty well, like if you're looking at Ron Howard and you can imagine that little Opie actually grew up to live in Milwaukee and be friends with the Fonz and then get voiceover work on Arrested Development, or if you were looking at Jennifer Aniston and picturing Rachel going on to a series of high-profile but ultimately-disappointing relationships while still maintaining a brave face and positive outlook...

... um. Anyway.

Other times it doesn't work so well, because it's hard to understand why Tom Hanks would go to all that trouble to become a merman only to leave Darryl Hannah and live on an island with a volleyball, but you get the point.

So in Ty Burrell's case -- he is, after all, the point, here:

It actually works, pretty well, too, if you're looking at first his roles in Dawn of the Dead and then Modern Family, because you can picture Ty Burrell in Dawn of the Dead as being this kind of dissolute playboy, hanging on grimly to his single-man's lifestyle and trying to make it work, a caricature by now of what he'd hoped to be at this point, with his swinging and martinis and smooth jazz, but inside, he's dying a little each day and desperately lonely and sad and wants nothing more than a change of lifestyle, something to break him out of this... only he doesn't know it, until one day he wakes up and the world is overcome by an outbreak of zombies, and he goes through that whole Dawn of the Dead movie, let's say nearly dying, and afterwards, he realizes that's exactly where his life is heading, in a non-symbolic, quite literal way: continue his wastrel life and get eaten by zombies, so he marries Claire (who by then has divorced Ed and left New York, but doesn't want to go back to small-town teaching), and becomes Modern Family.

(The logline for that movie? Greenberg enters Zombieland.)

I have really lost the narrative thread of this post. I'm moving on.

Thing That Makes You Go Hmmm About Him: He knows what I think about him, which is that he actually looks evil and smarmy. If you look at Ty Burrell... let's do that:

... if you look at him, you don't think bumbling dad, or funny guy, you think person who has been sent here to determine which parts of my blood, exactly, this corporation is going to use to make billions while I languish in a dark room somewhere.

Ty Burrell knows that, too; he's said in interviews that he has an evil look, which was why, when I first heard that he was the bumbling dad on a comedy, I said "Him?"

Which is almost like Hmmmm, which means that in this case I almost literally -- almost-- actually said Hmmm about him.

Also, Ty Burrell didn't start acting until 2001, when he was 34 years old. Since that time, he's appeared in eleven movies, and six TV shows. He's also been on Broadway, and now he's starring on a hit TV show that was written for him.

I guess being attacked by zombies in a mall can really get a guy to jump-start his career. But if you're sitting around saying something like I'm 34, I can't go just change my career now, you should definitely call Ty Burrell, and see what he has to say about that.

Reason I Assumed Sweetie Liked Him:
I guessed that it had something to do with him being on Modern Family, perhaps... but I also suspected that there was some sort of Law & Order component to it, and in reviewing Ty Burrell's career, I saw that my secret hunches were right. Ty has been on not one, but two versions of Law & Order, back at the beginning of his career.

That takes us one step closer to the Law & Order-pocalypse, mind you.

Actual Reason Sweetie Likes Him: "He's really funny."

Point I'd Like To Make About Sweetie's Actual Reason For Liking Him: Sweetie, like many women, maintains that really funny, or a sense of humor, in any way factors in to women's choices about who's a hunk and who's not. Women are liars. Hunks don't get chosen on the basis of humor, no matter what Sweetie maintains. Hunks get chosen on the basis of hunkiness. Women might marry a guy who's funny or a good provider, because some women are smart enough to realize that hunkiness fades and eventually you're going to want someone who can tell a good joke about how bald he is, but that doesn't stop women from swooning over Hunks, and that swooning is never over funny, it's over this:

Or this:

Although he's actually pretty funny, too. Which is understandable: You survive a zombie attack, you'll learn to look at the bright side of life, too.

resists an osier's stiff assaults (Friday's Sunday's Poem/ Hot Actress 47)

A list of some observation...
by Joseph Brodsky

A list of some observation. In a corner, it's warm.
A glance leaves an imprint on anything it's dwelt on.
Water is glass's most public form.
Man is more frightening than its skeleton.
A nowhere winter evening with wine. A black
porch resists an osier's stiff assaults.
Fixed on an elbow, the body bulks
like a glacier's debris, a moraine of sorts.
A millennium hence, they'll no doubt expose
a fossil bivalve propped behind this gauze
cloth, with the print of lips under the print of fringe, mumbling "Good night" to a window hinge.


About the poem: If you're like me, then you began today by thinking "I'm no longer going to print poems that don't rhyme, because that's what separates a poem from prose, right? The rhyming?" Then you searched for poems that rhyme, only to realize that your favorite poet, e e cummings, wrote poems that don't rhyme, and you like those, and also Bukowski wrote poems that don't rhyme and you like some of those, too, so you decided to table the discussion of whether it's a poem if it doesn't rhyme, and take that up another day.

Then, you found this poem and decided you liked it, too, even though it doesn't rhyme, further loosening your previous resolve to only list poems that rhyme, and you read this poem, and you read it again, and then you wondered:

What's an osier?

Then you looked that up and found out it's a willow like tree whose rodlike twigs are frequently used in basketry.

And then you had to go meet with a client.

(That's all if you're like me.)

About today's hot actress: Lynda Carter, suggested by Petri Dish, who says "She's still hot enough to star in the Wonder Woman remake...and I love her in lifetimes movies."

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Publicus Proventus: The Table of Contents, and Explanation.

Here's the posts in this category, most recent first. Page down for the explanation behind this all...

Page to the end for a list of Bad Republicans

Float Like A Butterfly, Sting Like A Bristol: How Dancing With The Stars shows why Democrats lose.

GOVERNMENT WORKS FOR ME: Look, I'm trying to help here. So read it and think about it, and then do something. It doesn't even take much effort.

Gov. Patsy is pro-choice, provided you choose to give him your money.

Lying is okay, and Justices create jobs: It's the Wisconsin Supreme Court race.

Death threats? Not likely

Reporting for this post done by ... nobody. How can you declare there's no conspiracy when you didn't bother to investigate?

Everything Scott Walker says is a lie. But since nobody calls him on it, it becomes the truth.

This is open government in Wisconsin.

Another non-sarcastic budget fix: Lower taxes but spend more at the state level? It can be done.

Will J.B. Van Hollen follow a court's order that requires him to implement ObamaCare?

An actual, nonsarcastic proposal to solve Wisconsin's pretend budget woes. Plus some jabs at Republicans' love for rich white guys.

Does this photo show what I think it shows?

Other GOP pols lie about budget, and there's plans to make it worse.

Governor Patsy is a liar. There's no deficit.

I'm so goddamned sick and tired of this. The GOP is lying hypocrites... and you asked for it. But I didn't.

Release the hounds! The GOP isn't listening to protesters, but Gov. Patsy wants the troops out anyway.

Governor Patsy doesn't want to hear it!

Legislature votes to make itself irrelevant, AG says only GOP judges can be right.

Maybe the elderly and sick can get health care from the Packers. (825 people will die while the State celebrates the Super Bowl.)

Here's 3 Better Symbolic Gestures than just sitting together at the State of the Union speech. (I like the one about not being shot the best.)

Businesses base decisions on more than just tax rates, which is why so many go to Illinois.

Government "waste" doesn't include $100 a day for Walker's SUV, I guess.

Oh, for God's sake! The press hypes a 66% tax increase that isn't, really.

Enjoy driving your kids to nonexistent schools over rutted roads: Tax cuts and spending cuts mean less government services. Are you ready for that?

The GOP deserves to be called murderers for inciting its followers to violence.

The GOP would rather believe something than know it, and would rather kill kids to help rich people get richer.

Scott Walker never met a government commission he didn't like -- even when there already is one doing the same job.

The voters put them there to create jobs. And let kids shoot people while riding ATVs.
The GOP agenda gets sidetracked, on day one.

GOP: "Locking kids up is less expensive than teaching them, so let's go with that." State Rep wants to end 4K programs.

"Less government" = hire friends, and lying is cool: WI Cheerleader Elect Scott Walker plans to hire buddies, and cut taxes only on the rich. Surprise!

I just hope none of the businesses compete with MY job
. (Politicians say they were elected to create jobs, but can they do that?)

If you pay me $100,000, I promise not to go back to school: An enterpreneur's wrongly-regarded plan might just save the economy.

Ask a stupid question about smokers...: It's not why smokers put up with tax increases. It's why we have smokers at all.

Rich enough is rich enough? Conservative writer Gregg Easterbrook thinks wealthy people shouldn't try to be more wealthy.

Republicans: "Only Democratic spending increases the deficit."

Republicans, 2: "Seriously, it's only the Democratic spending that matters."

A little selfishness goes a long way towards denying equal rights.

I'm going to show you the giant: The Complication Tax Affects More Than Just Your Wallet (But It Affects Your Wallet, Too.)

Now is the time for all good men to rise up and demand they get to pay for their carry-on luggage.

I am perfectly free to tell you how much money you should make. (Also, I'm right about it.)(Also, you're full of hot air.)

Bad Republicans:

Maybe she disagreed with his stance on health care? Ripping a woman out of a car and injuring her isn't domestic violence, says Scott Bundgaard.
UPDATE: Turns out Bundgaard lied. Surprise!

Rick Santorum speaks wistfully of his fascist background, thinks kids shouldn't go to school.

Publicus Proventus translates, roughly, to either Public discourse, or "Of the people of growing up," depending on which day you run it through the English-to-Latin translator.

It also means, in this case, my political thoughts, which I've decided to start being more upfront about on this blog (and elsewhere.)

I'm an old politics guy. I used to really, really, like politics: I liked following them, debating them. I liked thinking about governmental issues, and talking about them. I liked a good give-and-take about societal issues. I even ran for office (local office) twice and then almost ran for statewide office, once.

Then I graduated law school and got married and settled into a life of chasing 3-year-olds and coaching softball teams and blogging about Gamera and suing people, and drifted away from it. Eventually, I didn't pay much attention to politics at all. I still voted, dutifully, every four years, but other than that I didn't do much else.

That all began to change, and the first part was when I realized with dismay that I was witnessing, under George W. Bush, the systematic dismantling of our country -- an ongoing build-up of the wrong parts of government, tear-down of the right parts of civil society, and worse. I began to grow concerned that I'd missed something, that maybe things were too far gone for me to change them, and I also wondered what I could do to change them.

As that went on, as I from time-to-time became more involved and tried to follow the issues more and talk about them more with people, I began to want, more and more, to do something about it. But I didn't know what to do about it. I didn't want to run for office, and I didn't have much else I could do.

Except write. So I started, here and there, to write, last fall, mostly, about political issues, something I'd steered away from in all my blogging before that. I shouldn't have steered away from it, because since I began blogging I also had increasingly well-informed (and sometimes alarmed) opinions about what was happening.

But I did steer away from it, largely because I didn't want to offend anyone. I didn't want someone who enjoys reading about my kids, or my music, or my beliefs regarding who might or might not be The Best Rock Band, to get offended because I believed, too, that health care was a universal right.

Eventually, though, my concerns about health care in particular and poor people in general won out, and I began blogging, off-and-on, about political issues, culminating in the One Percent series of posts in which I even offended a long-time reader (who, luckily, came back or never left. Thanks, Petri Dish, for continuing to read!).

After the health care bill passed -- largely because of me, I'm sure -- I thought to myself I should keep this up. There's nothing, after all, that says I can't tell stories about Mr Bunches, and talk about The Best Pizza Topping, and also have a political viewpoint.

So, I'll be publishing Publicus Proventus on Sundays, probably alternating with Nonsportsmanlike Conduct! Or more often. Who knows.

And I'm not sorry if I offend you -- if you're offended by what I believe, you don't have to read - -but you should, if you're offended, tell me why. After all, if you don't care enough to say what you think and then defend it, what you think can't be worth very much, can it?

1001 Ways To Tune Up The World, Number Sixty

60. Paparazzi-fy The News.

Newsweek this week has an article about how people have grown to distrust science (making this approximately the umpteenth time Newsweek has taken their story ideas from my blogs -- two weeks ago I did a post on how to tell scientists are just making it up. In fact, twice in their new issue, Newsweek takes their cues from my blogs, because in that same issue they also dote on a book called The Lost Books Of The Odyssey, which I first mentioned when I noted how I was absolutely correct in determining the perfect formula for a best selling book.) (So Newsweek should probably, in the interests of truth-in-advertising, actually be called The Best Of Everything Only Two Weeks Later).

Anyway, one obvious way to tune up the world would be to have Newsweek start to pay me. Another way is, as Number 60 above points out, to "paparazzi-fy" the news.

A big problem for news organizations these days is that they don't really have the ability to make money. All these companies like the New York Times and Newsweek and CBS are in the business, more or less, of reporting news -- but that news frequently gets reported by CBS, which has to pay big bucks to get a reporter to go interview Obama, and then, once CBS reports the news (and pays their reporter), everyone in the world jumps all over it and Googles it and puts on the Huffington Post (which I'm bizarrely proud to say I've never read) and otherwise takes all the value out of, leaving CBS (or the Times, or whoever) holding the bag for the cost of reporting, while you and I get our news from Huffington, or, in my case, from either blogs about celebrities or whatever Dan Patrick happened to mention as an intro that morning.

But celebrity reporting sites don't have that same problem. You never see the same photos of celebrities on various websites, and you don't see exclusive interviews with the Kardashians repeated ad infinitum on all sorts of websites -- at least not until after their value has been diluted because everyone knows it.

Instead, celebrity reporters and gossip columnists and the like get exclusives, paying their interviewees for the rights to run a story on their own, and copyrighting their photos, and then carefully releasing just enough information to whet people's appetites and make them want to go read the story. (And they jealously guard those rights, too: If you want to see how jealously, republish a paparazzi's celebrity photo.)

So here's what "real" news outlets should do: the same thing. If you want to interview someone, guarantee that it's an exclusive and pay for it -- and then make sure that nobody else uses your information until you get the value out of it. Got a video chat with the president? An interview? Have the president guarantee it as an exclusive.

And if he won't? Then wait until someone else reports it, and then use that as your own information, since it obviously wasn't guaranteed an exclusive. That's what I'd do if I was a news executive: I'd let CBS hire all the reporters and then just watch what they report, and put that out myself, while marshalling my resources to get exclusives, only.

Eventually, other news gatherers would tire of paying to gather news for me, and would either quit hiring reporters entirely or would, themselves, demand exclusives.

If they quit hiring reporters, then the news-generators would have to somehow get the news out to the public themselves -- maybe through email campaigns and websites and press releases like the White House used during the health care push, emailing bloggers and encouraging them to re-post items -- or they'd have to cave in and start guaranteeing exclusives to make it worth someone's while to pay a reporter to interview that person.

The photo on this entry, by the way, is from GQ -- but was downloaded from the CBS News website. GQ had an exclusive with Rielle Hunter, and then CBS provided GQ with some free publicity for their interview with a woman who brought down a presidential candidate.

Prior entries:

13. Ban driving any kind of automobile, motorcycle or other personal vehicle within 1-2 miles of downtown in any city with a population of more than 100,000.

12. Abolish gym class; instead, teach kids to play musical instruments.

11. Change copyright laws to allow anyone to use anyone else's creative work provided that the copier pay 60% of the profit to the originator and that the copier not cast the original work in a negative light.

10. Have more sidewalk cafes and outdoor seating.

9. When you have to give someone a gift, ask them what they want, and then get that thing for them.

8. Never interrupt or finish someone's jokes.

7. Periodically, give up something you like for at least a month.

6. Switch to "E-money."

5. Have each person assigned one phone number, and then add an extension for the various phones and faxes that person might be reached at.

4. Abolish Mondays and Tuesdays.

3. Don't listen to interviews with athletes or comedians.

2. Have "personal cashiers" at the grocery store.

1. Don't earn more than $200,000 per year.

Claudius wanted to be the first man to reach the stars... but it was murder to get there. Read
Eclipse, the haunting sci-fi book from Briane Pagel. Available at and on your Kindle.


We'll see if Sweetie reads all the way to the end of these. (3 Good Things From 3/24/10)

I've been so busy lately that last night I actually forgot to go exercise. But that didn't stop me from packing string cheese in as an extra part of my lunch today... here's my 3 Good Things from yesterday.

1. Mr Bunches' imitation of Mama Odie in The Princess and The Frog
. The latest movie that Mr Bunches is obsessing over is The Princess And The Frog, which the Babies! got last week and which Mr Bunches has already almost memorized.

Last night, I got to watch most of it while I babysat the boys during Sweetie's sister's cosmetics party at our house -- the Babies! and I holed up in their room and watched movies and played trucks and played Bust It -- and the movie we watched was The Princess and the Frog. While it's a pretty good movie in its own right, even better is Mr Bunches' imitation of the voodoo-witch character Mama Odie:

Mr Bunches imitates her perfectly. That kid's going places.

2. "Bust It" has become an official new game.
"Bust It" is the latest game I've taught Mr Bunches to play, a game that stems out of him liking to be chased and then tickled, and out of a bet I made Sweetie about how the song Bust A Move starts.

After spending weeks -- literally-- teaching myself to rap Bust a Move, I told Sweetie the song starts with someone saying Bust it, and she didn't believe me. (I proved her wrong, the only time that's happened.)

Then I began playing with Mr Bunches and each time I was going to chase him and tickle him, I'd say, just like in the song, "Bust it". He's now learned that "Bust it" is the way to get me to chase and tickle him, and he'll come up to me, brace himself to run away, and say "Bust it" and then take off running until I catch him.

3. The little purple flowers are starting to come up in our yard. Middle and The Boy did their annual leaf raking, and did a good job of it, clearing the flowerbeds so that the first flowers of spring could begin blooming. I saw them yesterday for the first time. They're little, purple, and pretty, and I'd have a picture of them but when I tried to take one yesterday, my phone had somehow shut off and I didn't have time to wait for it to start up because I was running late, and then today, when I tried to take a picture, my phone had again somehow mysteriously shut off.

So the flowers are little, purple, pretty, and have the ability to avoid being photographed.
104 down, 10,641 to go: This song is completely underrated, even by me: I left her off my list of the 6 Best Quirky Chick Singers. It's Extraordinary Machine by Fiona Apple:

(On the other hand, Fiona Apple did get mentioned as one singer who should've won a Best New Artist grammy, and was named The Best Female Singer.)

(Also, Sweetie gets jealous when I mention Fiona Apple, so to calm her down, I'll mention that yesterday, a guy at Walgreen's thought Sweetie was in high school, and I'll also post this:

A new way to meet people?

As a married guy, I don't typically spend any time talking about, thinking about, or otherwise dealing with singles websites -- no matter what the spam email in my Inbox says.

But I felt compelled to mention after I heard about it, mainly because while I'm happily married, many of you may not be, and many of you may be floundering around trying to meet people in the old-fashioned (i.e., ineffective) ways that people used to meet people before the internet.

You know the ways people used to meet: They'd be introduced by friends, or fall in love at work (like Sweetie and I did -- at first sight! [for me; Sweetie took some convincing]) or, like my grandma and grandpa, they met while grandma was doing a keg stand at a frat party.

But that's all over, because the Internet has revolutionized everything except toast, and the latest thing it's revolutionized is meeting people. isn't your typical dating site. Yeah, there's singles there and they're looking to meet people and all that stuff, but there's a lot more to it than that. A lot more like free games to play -- games ranging from retro fun like "Rubik's Snake" to the one I'm planning on blowing the afternoon with: "Missionaries and Cannibals."

There's also a blog where people can post on topics ranging from fun jokes to funner jokes to discussions of travel options and more, and, best of all for you superficial young people, a spot to rate people's photos.

If I was still single, and if Sweetie didn't exist for me to fall in love with, I'd be hanging out on, having a fun time finding someone to have a fun time with.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

"Violin-y" is an under-rated, but actual, mood. (3 Good Things From 3/22/10)

Without too much ado, here they are:

1. This version of "Such Great Heights" came on my Pandora yesterday: I was listening to the Regina Spektor station, and out of nowhere comes The Section Quartet:

It was one of those songs that made me wish I played the violin. But don't tell Sweetie, because she'll make that face she makes whenever I mention the sometimes-desire I have to play the violin, a face that says You're really kind of a geek, which I am, but she doesn't have to lord it over me.

2. I was able to exchange the coffee pot for one that works. Much of last night was devoted to correcting things that had gotten screwed up in the days before, and the first of those was that I had to take back the coffee pot that I'd gotten on Friday, a coffee pot I'd bought to replace the one Mr F broke. The new one didn't work, either: It leaked water out the bottom, so I had to take it back last night, waiting in line at the Wal-Mart behind a woman who had one of those too-convoluted transactions going on: a pile of things, some of which were being returned, some of which were being exchanged and some of which, I'm pretty sure, she just brought in to chat about with the clerk.

When it was finally our turn -- Mr F and Mr Bunches came with me, but were impatient about being in the customer service area instead of the toy department (or, as they seem to think of the latter, their own personal playground) -- the clerk graciously said I could go exchange the coffee pot, but warned me that because I was returning only the pot-and-maker, he was going to keep the new box and instructions.

I assume that's a precaution against me forming a grand ring of schemers devoted to getting free coffee-maker boxes and instruction booklets.

3. I finally got that sink fixed! The other thing that took up all my time last weekend and yesterday was the upstairs sink. Last week, trying to avoid brushing his teeth, Mr Bunches had kicked the bathroom vanity and knocked loose a door. In putting that back, I noticed there was some water dripping onto the bottom and checked to see if the sink was leaking... and the pipe crumbled in my hand.

That led to a trip to Home Depot, where a guy helped me (and Mr F and Mr Bunches) get a package of pipes to repair the sink -- he looked at the old one I'd brought in with me (I always bring the old one with me, because I don't know how to measure a pipe to determine the new one I need, and after the whole measuring-a-refrigerator fiasco, I just take a sample into the store.) The parts the guy picked out for us didn't work, so I went back later that night and got different parts, on Sunday night, but those didn't work, either.

So last night, I loaded up Mr F and Mr Bunches again, and we headed out to Home Depot, where they looked leery about coming back to this store a third time in 24 hours. Things got worse then when we got to the plumbing aisle and I realized that I'd left my wallet in the car, so I had to escort them back outside to get the wallet, at which point they thought they were leaving, and got excited about not being at Home Depot, only to then get dragged back inside, where I had to try to pick out the right part while simultaneously dealing with Mr F's high-pitched protests and Mr Bunches' attempts to escape (he did get away at one point by crawling through the shelves into the next aisle, so you can see where I might get distracted and not get the right part.)

But I did get the right part, and fixed the sink, and people are able to once again use the bathroom faucet/kick the vanity doors to avoid toothpaste without fear of leaks.

103 down, 10,642 to go: Because I'm still in a violin-y kind of mood, here's "Violin" by They Might Be Giants:

Monday, March 22, 2010

On the downside, I grabbed the wrong Doritos at the store, so that was a bummer. (3 Good Things From The Weekend)

It's a great day in America, isn't it? Yes, I'm talking about the health care reform bill. But I'm also in a good mood because every day I think about 3 Good Things that happened to me before that day, and use them to keep me happy. Things like:

1. A Friday off of work! I was supposed to go in late on Friday, babysitting the Babies! while Sweetie took The Boy to the doctor, but around noon I made the decision to just stay home. Everyone ought to play hooky now and then.

2. This time, the Rachael Ray dinner turned out much better. I've started, every Sunday, picking out some new fancy recipe from all the cookbooks we have, and making a dinner we've never had before. Last week's recipe from Rachael Ray was some sort of way-too-olive-y pasta dish that nobody liked (although Oldest said last night that we should have given her the leftovers, because she loves olives, something I never knew.)

Last night's was supposed to be an Orange-Barbecue chicken, but the Babies! and I couldn't find "chipotle peppers in adobo sauce" in the grocery store (we did find pizza samples, proving that they do really exist), so we went with a kind of salsa instead of that, and cooked it all up.

The side dish was supposed to be baked bread with goat cheese on it, but we couldn't find goat cheese, either (we're not very good at finding stuff), so we got feta cheese, and it was only after cooking it all that I learned (from Oldest and Sweetie) that feta cheese doesn't melt when you cook it.

Which makes me wonder if it's cheese at all.

But in the end, the kind-of-barbecue-orange chicken, and the bread, was delicious.

3. I danced with Sweetie for as along as Mr F let us!
Friday night, hanging out after dinner and relaxing, I put on this song:

And asked Sweetie to dance, right there in our living room. She accepted, and we danced for about 10 seconds before Mr F, our own personal chaperone, separated us and made us sit down. When he left, we started dancing again, and he came back and separated us again. It was just like high school all over again -- except this time my date wasn't imaginary.

102 down, 10,643 to go: Sometimes, I get some songs that I don't initially like, and then they come on at some time like when I'm playing catch with Mr F on a Friday morning off from work, and they catch my ear, and the combination of cool music and fun thing I'm doing makes me like the song.

That's what happened with song 102, Safe & Sound by Electric President: