Monday, September 29, 2008

Fall: When The Paths Run Red With Blood

I'm a bad influence.

Julie was pointing out the leaves changing on the trees yesterday on the drive home and asking Garrett about the seasons.

Of course, I pipe up and ask, "Do you know why they're red?"


"Because they eat people. If you see a red tree, it's because it ate someone. But that only happens in the fall when the trees get hungry."

I probably shouldn't have told him to tell his teacher this when they learn about the seasons in school...

Anyone Want A Pool Table?

Sorry for the lack of updates recently. We've been a bit busy doing some stuff for the renovations.

What's that? Renovations, you say?

Yes. We're getting our basement done, starting in a week or two. In the meantime, we need to purge that thing. Most of the stuff down there will easily fit in the storage unit but we have one wee little problem.

The pool table.

I'm loathe to part with it as we've had it for ages but it's been buried under crap for the last 5 years and there won't be anywhere to put it once the basement is finished, so we're going to have to get rid of it.

Is there anyone out there who is interested in a non-slate pool table? Comes with balls and cues. We'll negotiate the price, but it won't be much :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Something To Think About

Would someone arrested for abetting the robbery of a McDonald's be a Hamburglar Helper?

Monday, September 22, 2008


Threat Number 4: BEES!

After a morning spent at the Early Years' Center, I fed the kids, put Kara to bed and tried to get Garrett to play out in the backyard for a bit.

All was going well until we opened the umbrella that shades the little plastic playset in the backyard.

That's when it started raining bees. I've found the odd proto-hive in the folds of the umbrella's fabric before, but there's usually only one or two bees and they're easily persuaded to leave (after a few swats with the fly swatter).

Not today. I quickly marshaled Garrett back into the house and tried to decide what to do next.

One of my buddies suggested I go this route. I'll wait until Julie gets home and see what she thinks. If that is a non-starter, we'll just try spraying them with bee killer (aka Death Honey) until they stop twitching.

How Many Points Is Insomnia Worth?

Sunday, September 21, 2008

I Can See Clearly Now

Remember a year or so ago when Garrett poured window cleaning solution all over Julie's cousin's laptop? Remember how we had to buy her a new one?

Well, after a year or so of having a perfectly fine laptop sitting in a box in my basement, I decided that it was time to get it repaired.

I'd concidered not bothering to fix it and finding some other use for it as it was going to cost me about $350 to repair the screen. After taking some time to scout out the cost of a new laptop with roughly the same features, I realized it would cost me about $1000, easily.

So off to the shop the old lappy went and I FINALLY got it back on Friday. WOO!

In fact, this post is being typed on the laptop AS WE SPEAK!

If nothing else, it will be nice to not have to borrow Ralph's lappy whenever we go to Sarnia to visit. I can't really run a lot of games or anything on this machine, but it's a fine little DVD player and works pretty well for the general web-surfing stuff. I'm also interested to tinker with Vista a little as I've never really sat down to fiddle with it until now. It's not the evil incarnate that it has been made out to be and it is pretty from a visual standpoint, but there are enough things that it doesn't do as simply as XP that will keep me from wanting to switch over whole cloth.

Saturday, September 20, 2008


My kids are magnets to wierd stuff (almost as wierd as the way I spell weird!).

I took Kara to the free day at the Acton Fair yesterday and she had a blast. She LOVES animals and it almost took a crowbar to pry her out of the livestock tent. I took her over to the petting zoo.

That's when she got trampled by a llama.


We were having fun, looking at the lambs and pigs and so forth, when this llama shows up, head-butts Kara, knocks her down and then starts stepping over her like she's little more than a speed bump... which she probably was to something as big as a llama.

I realize now that the stories of little old ladies lifting cars off of their grandkids is true. I grabbed that llama and lifted him over and moved him off of Kara so I could extricate her before he decided to finish the job (or spit on us).

Thankfully she was more scared than hurt. She even went back to the petting zoo today and, if the stories I hear are true, she punched the llama in the nose.

I kind of doubt that though.

Friday, September 19, 2008

More Friday Ephemera

I could survive for 1 minute, 19 seconds chained to a bunk bed with a velociraptor

I'll spend the extra 16 seconds trying to feed Luke's corpse to the velociraptor.

Put Your Smile On

This comic just brightened my whole day, esp. with the Acton Fall Fair starting.

Cyanide and Happiness, a daily webcomic
Cyanide & Happiness @

This one over at XKCD also rocked my socks.

I love the alt-txt. "Staple Guns: Because duct tape doesn't make the ka-CHUNK sound."

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Garrett Goes To Kindergarten

So... Yesterday was Garrett's first full day at school. He took the bus all by himself too!

Don't lick the window!

Kara's happy to see him go, but Mom's a little emotional...

And he even made it back on the right bus. Will wonders never cease?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Darwin Award Winners In Training

Skip to the 2 minute mark and watch these guys do something absolutely insane. I am both in awe and filled with thanks that I am not these guys... or one of the drivers on the road with them.

Adam Kimmel presents: Claremont HD from adam kimmel on Vimeo.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Another Sign Of Someone With Far Too Much Time On Their Hands

This just made my day. Absolutely stellar work by people who have a lot more free time than I do.

Portal - Still Alive typography from Trickster on Vimeo.

Paying For Your Crimes

I went in today with my carefully prepared explanation for why I was speeding last Friday.

After I found the office/courtroom thingy in Guelph, I was informed that the only thing that I could do by pleading guilty w/ explanation was to get the monetary amount reduced. Getting rid of the points would involve pleading not guilty and coming back some other time to see if I could convince them I wasn't going as fast as I probably was going.

I might like to try to skirt the system at times, but if I get caught, I believe in paying my dues. I was speeding. I got caught. I pay my fines.

Of course, the NEXT time I get a ticket, I'm fighting that bad boy! Hopefully it won't happen for another 6 years.

Plague House

Kara has had the snurfles for the past few days and last night it was getting into fever territory. After she came home today, she was very lethargic and was running a fever around 104F, so Julie took her to the walk-in clinic.

It seems Kara has Red Ear. Not Pink Eye, Red Ear. I hope that the meds she's on will help bring the fever down quickly. I can handle the snot. It's the fever and listlessness that always concern me.

Better Days Are Coming My Way!

Well, this weekend has been much nicer than the crapfest that was last week (esp. Friday).

Sure, the weather was hot and it's been rainy, but I love rainy, yucky weather, so I'm happy!

Tomorrow will be busy as I have to do a bit of mailing in the morning and then see about this ticket at 9am. We'll see what's up after that. I've been skirting the edges of whatever dreadful illness has overtaken Garrett, Kara and Julie, but I know I'll likely end up sniffling and snurfling tomorrow.

As long as we're not all sick at once... that's the important thing! And on that note, I'm going to bed.

At least I have my 360 going back to Microsoft for repairs tomorrow. Yay!

We Went To The Zoo... Zoo... Zoo...

Julie's work had a staff outing day at the Toronto Zoo on Saturday so we braved the elements (which wasn't that hard, as it was pretty much overcast all day) and saw a lot of cool things.

Kara LOVED the zoo, though according to her, every animal is a doggie.

Garrett had a blast this year too. We hadn't been for a few years and I think he was a bit too young to appreciate it then. This time around, he was able to actually understand what he was seeing and he seemed to love a lot of the new exhibits.

I've got to stop filling his head with nonsense though. I had him convinced that the burbling jets of water in the river at the zoo entrance were really the bubbles being let off by a sea monster. If the ropes that were holding the sea monster down were to snap, the only bridge out of the zoo would be destroyed and we'd be stuck there all day. Suffice it to say, this earned me an eye roll from Julie.

I also had Garrett scouring the woods by the tiger enclosure to see if he could spot any of the rare invisible tigers that roam the woods. He didn't, but we did find a kid on the bridge who was having a temper tantrum (or had had one). The kid was obviously a victim of the invisible tigers, or so Garrett and I were led to believe.

There were a lot of great aquarium displays this year.

Garrett & I got to pet a stingray or three at Stingray Bay. It was pretty cool. They feel like you'd imagine a snake would feel if snakes didn't feel the way they actually feel. When Garrett was finally able to pet the stingrays (they seemed to avoid us for a while), they freaked out and splashed him. Suffice it to say, he was a little leery about trying to pet them again.

Garrett sizes up his nemesis.

Kara got there just in time to see the hippo take a dip.

According to Garrett, his favourite thing at the zoo were the zebras, which leads me to this, my favourite picture of the day.

One of these things is a zebra. Can you guess which one?

Oh, and did I forget to mention the all-time coolest thing at the zoo?


Garrett also got to go for a camel ride... .

And Kara was able to hang out with some kids her own size (get it?)

All in all, it was a great, though long, day. As long as the kids had fun, that was what mattered. According to Kara, it was definately worth the trip.

Friday, September 12, 2008


I don't know what I did to piss off whatever it is I pissed off, but this day just won't stop sucking.

"But why, Brock?" you ask, "What could have possibly gone wrong now?"


I mean, what next? I'm afraid to turn on the PS3 because THAT will probably start shooting death rays or something now.

I know the 360 has a pretty well-earned reputation for crapping out and I've had mine for a year and a half with pretty much no issue, but did it have to die today of all days?

I'm going to go cry in the corner for a bit.

It's Friday The Thirteenth, Isn't It?

Ok. Today has just been a cavalcade of crap, at least where I'm concerned.

The day started off ok. I got that election post out of the way and headed off to work with a skip in my step and a smile on my face. Everything was going great...

Until I got pulled over by the cops. Grr... They said I was doing 71 in a 50 zone, but they also kind of gave me the wink-wink, nudge-nudge and said that I could plead guilty with an explanation and that they're really good about things like that in Guelph.

Sigh. So now I have to head to traffic court next week to contest this and hope that my stupid excuse holds water and that the fact that this is only my second speeding ticket ever (and the first in about 6 years) helps me get a reduced fine and no demerit points.

There was some other just generally annoying stuff going on today but it was just exacerbated by the annoyance I felt at myself for this stupid speeding ticket.

So, to top things off, I get home and put my headphones on to listen to a video on YouTube only to feel something tickling my ear. I yanked off my headphones to discover that an earwig had made its home in my left ear canal.

Much squirming and stomping ensued, along with further tearful calls to Julie.

Speaking of Julie, I blame her for all of this mess. She had $666 in her bank account yesterday. She's just such a good person that the roots of all that evil made their home in the fertile soil of my day. ARG!

Did I also mention that Kara is sick with some kind of snurfley cold, Garrett is off fighting the zombie hordes of imaginationville and I've somehow managed to buy the only claustrophobic, agoraphobic, non-vegetarian plecostamus in all of Halton Hills?

Yeah, the hits just keep on coming. We're also supposed to go to the zoo tomorrow... Oh, look at that! It's going to RAIN ALL WEEKEND!


In case you're wondering, you can consider this post to be your own personal invitation to my pity party. Cake and punch will be served.

This Is Not An Election Post

I know that in the past I've had some pretty strong views regarding elections, the parties involved, etc.

I just want to let you know that this is not going to be one of those posts. That's still burbling away in my brain and will probably spew forth sometime over the weekend.

No, I just wanted to touch on two things.

1) How about a round of applause for everyone involved for pulling their collective heads out of their asses and letting the Green Party have a seat at the debate? I'll wait while you finish screaming and clapping.

2) While almost nothing besides a free million dollars to every household would ever get me to vote Liberal, I'm so tempted to get an election sign for the local Liberal candidate. Why?

Because it's (Bruce) BOWSER!

I want to make up slogans about freeing the Mushroom Kingdom and rescuing the princess and put them up on my lawn...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I Think I'm Turning Japanese...

For someone like myself who really likes things like comics, anime and Japanese videogames, I have to admit something.

I've never read a manga before. Oh, I've flipped one open here and there but I've never really had any urge to start reading them.

Well, I have officially started to read my first manga. I figured I'd start with something that I know will be good so I am reading the first volume of Naruto. I've read about half of the book so far and I have to admit that it's pretty decent. I saw a Fresh Ink segment from a few weeks ago that dealt with a bunch of interesting manga that have come out recently and I might have to look into them.

Crap. Just what I need... a NEW addiction.

Becoming THAT Parent

Garrett went to school for his half-day yesterday. It's starting to gradually sink in just how old Garrett is and that he's not just a little guy any more.

His teacher seems to be very nice and Garrett is having fun at school so far. He goes for his first full day next week, which should be interesting.

All of that said, I'm less than impressed with the secretary, bus company and the school in general. I don't want to be THAT parent (you know, the one who bitches and moans about every perceived slight that their child undergoes) but between the delay in getting us any useful information (it came about a week before school started) and now the issues we're having with Garrett's busing, I'm rather underwhelmed with the back-office stuff going on at Garrett's school.

A lot of the problems we've had are the sorts of things that, if we'd been told about them in early August or so, we could have worked out something long before classes started. The fact that we're just dealing with them now and that the school has, in the case of the busing, stated that they're not even going to begin to do anything until late September, just drives me up the wall.


At least Garrett's teacher is good. I can deal with the behind-the-scenes crap if I know he's in good hands otherwise.

It's Not The End Of The World As We Know It

The Large Hadron Collider fired up today and since we're all still around to make new blog postings and read them, I guess the world didn't end.

I often let my paranoid imagination run rampant with worst-case scenarios and I'd been kind of dreading today at the back of my mind for a few months. I know that the likelihood of the world being gobbled by a black hole or exploding upon contact with antimatter was pretty unlikely. That said, I've read or seen enough cataclysmic sci-fi to give my brain ample fodder to speculate what it might be like the day the world goes ka-pow.

But it looks like we didn't all die and that means that I'll have to pay my Visa bill after all. And here I thought I had a way out of doing that :)

Monday, September 08, 2008

The Voice Is Silenced

I just found out (by way of one of the sites I visit) that Don LaFontaine died sometime over this past week.

Bah. On the one hand, he'd become almost a parody of himself, but you have to respect the guy for rising to the pinnacle of his profession.

Who's Don LaFontaine? He's the guy who does the voiceovers for almost any movie trailer you've seen in the past 15 years or so. You know, the guy who says, "IN A WORLD WHERE MUTANTS EAT BABIES, ONLY ONE MAN... AND ONE WOMAN... CAN SAVE THE HUMAN RACE!"

Or he would have said that if he hadn't gone and died (and if my script was ever accepted by the fine people down in Hollywood!).

I Need To Carry A Tape Recorder Around...

I thoroughly expect to have conversations like this with Garrett someday and they will probably be just as awesome.

Heck, I was gone for a week and the kid seems to have picked up an entire thesaurus full of words as it is. Even Kara was showing off her expanded vocabulary this afternoon. We were waiting in the Mazda 5 in front of Giant Tiger while Julie ran in to get something and I heard Kara say, "Daddy."

I turn around and she's pointing out the front window and starts to say, "Lion, lion, lion," while pointing at the Giant tiger.

I was suitably impressed with my little muchkin's wordsmithing.

I can't say I'm feeling the same about my own though. This post is almost incomprehensible. I'm going to go to bed, if I can make myself fall asleep. I was so wiped earlier but now I'm wide awake and barely even feeling tired.

See, i told yousssssss'''zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Sunday, September 07, 2008


7 hours of driving... 1 pit stop...

I'm back!

I'll post more later, but I'm going to spend tonight playing Spore and going to bed.

Monday, September 01, 2008

On The Road Again...

Well, tomorrow is a big day and I don't know if I'll get a chance to log in here before I head out, so if things get a little quiet around here over the next week, well, it's because I'm gone.

I'll be up in Manitoulin for the week and won't be home until Sunday afternoon. Keep us in your prayers as we have a lot of new staff heading up this year and it's always interesting to see how they react in the wild :)

You might want to keep Julie in mind too as she'll be managing the wee beasties on her own while I'm gone.

Tomorrow is also Garrett's first day of Kindergarten! Well, it's not his first full day but he is going to meet the teacher and have a little classroom time with one or two of his classmates. I can't believe he's already heading off to school. At least I'll be home for when he starts to attend for the full days.

It should also be interesting as this will be one of the first times Kara will be at the sitter's without Garrett around to amuse her.

Anyway, see you in 6 days!

He's HOW Old?!?!

Man... I officially feel old today.

Dave turns 30 today and here I am, older than he is!


Happy birthday, little brother!

Now to watch out for Grant... He's only got two more years until HE is 30 and then I'll REALLY feel old.

How old? All-caps OLD!

You May Now Resume Poking The Brocky

Don't ask me why, but it seems that doing the overnight shift really gets me in a good mood the next day.

I am in a MUCH better mood than I was yesterday and, as long as I get off to bed soon, I should be in a pretty good mood tomorrow too. Yay!

I blame this accursed sunshine. I do want it to be nice and sunny this coming week while I'm up at Manitoulan, but it has been too sunny (and thereby hot) this week and I think that must be making me grumpy.