Thursday, October 29, 2009

Crappy Computer!

Well, I was going to upload some more pictures and show off Garrett's trip to the Museum last week and the costumes from last weekend, but just before I got Garrett out the door for school this morning, my desktop PC decided to go spazzy and stop working.

I'm not sure exactly what is going on with it, but it's pulling the ol' "There's No Keyboard Attached" trick that it did a few months ago, which is incredibly infuriating when you have no less than 2 USB keyboards hooked up to it at a time and it acknowledges neither of them.

I'm going to have to snag one of the surplus PS/2 port keyboards from work again and see if it can rectify the situation and get me back into Windows, which seemed to fix things last time it went screwy. If not, well, I'll just grab the drive and start hitting the stores and see if I can find myself a nice new rig. I was hoping to wait until the spring before I upgraded but at least Windows 7 is out now. Stupid computers.

And I was already a bit grumpy BEFORE this happened. Grrr.....

Monday, October 26, 2009

Sick Of My Vacation

As usual, I finally get to take vacation and I've been 'blessed' with the honour of being the last person on my house to come down with this stupid flu/cold thingy that is going around. It wasn't the 'DEATH COLD' or anything, but I've been pretty sapped of energy since late Friday/early Saturday and putting my shed together yesterday (with a lot of help from Codeboy) drained me.

That said, I was able to lounge around in bed over the past few evenings and watched Wolverine: Origins (which wasn't as bad as I imagined but that's not saying much) and finished both Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story and Uncharted 2. Now I can start playing some Demon's Souls or Borderlands or GTA: Chinatown Wars... if I can stay awake after Garrett goes to bed.

Of course, I know I'll be feeling just peachy by the time I go back to work on Wednesday. Sigh.

It's Not Rocket Science

But it is brain surgery. My dad had some work done on his noggin last Friday and should be home from the hospital as I type this. He was undergoing a procedure to reduce and/or eliminate the seizures he has been experiencing for upwards of 15 years (and which were getting progressively worse).

According to my mom, there haven't been any seizures since the procedure, which is awesome news. As long as he doesn't do anything silly over the next few weeks and just relaxes for a bit, he'll hopefully be right as rain.

Thanks for all of the prayers and well wishes from everyone who saw my tweets last week. They were much appreciated.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Return To The Old Stomping Grounds

I took Garrett downtown today to visit the ROM and had a grand old time. I'll post a bunch of the pictures shortly, but that's beside the point.


We wandered over to my old place of business (ie. the place that cost me my education) to see if GEM was still around and lo and behold, there was naught but a giant crater where that whole block of businesses was. Yeesh.

And when did Yonge Street (at least between Bloor and Wellesley) become Little Japan/Korea? Every 2 feet was yet another sushi bar, korean grill or combination thereof. Not that I'm complaining. I was just wishing that I'd had this kind of selection 10 years ago and that I could have convinced my 5 year old son that sashimi is a good thing. Alas, he didn't want to go for it, though he did try some bubble tea.

Speaking of bubble tea, we went to one called 'Real Fruit' bubble tea where Garrett asked for a chocolate tea and got a pink, strawberry tea. He liked the tapioca bubbles and now I owe him a proper, non-pink, chocolate bubble tea!

We also found a mask for his Incredibles costume at a theatrical store, so it wasn't a wasted trip down the ol' street. But boy, did I ever start to feel old.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Don't Call Me!

I'm on vacation for a week and a half. A glorious week and a half where I don't have to think about work. I hope. Now to see if the house can manage without my wisdom and guidance until the 28th...

I'm taking Garrett to the ROM on Wednesday and we're going to have a whole day in downtown TO to soak in the ambiance. He's excited to go on his first subway ride and to see the mummies and dinosaurs at the museum.

Other than the trip to Toronto and a condo board meeting tomorrow, I'm essentially committment free. I plan to beat Uncharted 2 and sink some time into a few other games and read a bunch of comics and novels and maybe, just maybe, catch up on my Maclean's backissues. I'm still reading issues from June!

The only thing I'm NOT looking forward to is putting up the shed, but it has to get done or else I'll be building it in the snow!

I just have to hope that the aches and snurfles I've had off and on today aren't an indication that I'm coming down with the flu that Garrett, Kara and Julie have had over the last week or so. I did manage to dodge Kara's puke at the park yesterday when she threw up while I was under the playground (that was fun), so maybe I'll get lucky and not manifest THE SICKNESS...


Today marks the day Garrett finally became a N.I.T. aka Nerd In Training. He's done well over the past week despite fighting a cold and I gave him the choice of Monsters or Space for his reward for getting enough tokens on his responsibility chart.

He chose Monsters (duh) and so he got this book:

It's essentially a Monster Manual for kids and it's actually quite well made. We went through it tonight at bedtime and he was able to figure out which monsters eat people and which are harmless. This is the kind of info that will serve him well later in life, when the Purple Worms attack!

Friday, October 16, 2009

That's One Incredible Costume!

We went out to get things for Halloe'en costumes today and found a great one for a pittance. I was going to make some kind of costume for Garrett and Kara (I was thinking of dressing one as a zombie and one as a flower and going for a Plants Vs. Zombies theme) but I stumbled across this find at the Value Village in Guelph.

Total cost: $7. The costume was tucked into a bookshelf but fit Garrett perfectly. The gloves were only a couple dollars too and now I'm just going to make him a little eye mask and we'll have our own little Mr. Incredible :)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Dear Sony...

It's Uncharted 2 day today! Woo!

Gotta love this commercial. Where was the 'Sony rep' guy back when the PS3 launched? He's awesome.

Time to go explore the Himalayas before work.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Energizer Kara

Kara has been up to her old tricks this weekend. She won't go to sleep down here at the Grace's and takes forever to go to bed. Last night she woke up around 11:30pm and threw up, then refused to go to bed until sometime past 2am.

One upside is that she has basically lost her voice, which means she's not able to wake other people up when she gets cranky and yells. At least Garrett seems to have gotten over his 24-hour flu or whatever was bugging him.

What a great Thanksgiving this has been :P

Thursday, October 08, 2009

The Thinker

The following is essentially a word-for-word transcript of my conversation with Garrett on the way home from the hardware store this evening.

G:"What do cobras eat?"

B:"All sorts of stuff."

G:"Do they eat bananas?"

B:"No, I think they only eat animals."

G:"Would they eat a fish?"

B:"They might, but I doubt they'd find many fish in the desert."

G:"I'm going to take a dead fish out into the middle of the desert and throw it at the cobra to see if it will eat it."

B:"I think they like their animals alive when they eat them."


Got Some Pretty Big Stones

Well, this day off isn't going as swimmingly as I hoped.

I took today off because, well, I seem to have worked almost every hour humanly possible in September. I managed to clock up 10 hours of overtime last week alone. So I took today off in the hopes of getting the kids off to school and the sitter, curling up on the couch and playing a bunch of Demon's Souls or Muramasa until dinner time.

But in order to feel somewhat productive, I swung by the Home Hardware in Georgetown to pick up some paving stones to put as the base for our new shed (which will be constructed as soon as it stops raining for longer than a day).

Julie had instructed me to pick up 6 2'x2' paving stones to accommodate the larger shed we're going to build back there. No problem. I get to the store, find a helpful guy who gives me an order for the stones in the lumber yard. I pay for them, go out back and take a look at the gigantic paving stones that will never fit in my car, no way, no how. I saw the 18"x18" stones next to the 2'x2' stones and thought that they looked much more like the stones we have in our backyard.

So back into the store I go. I wait in line for a bit, ask for a change in the stones and get a bit of money back. Everything is hunky dory. I load up the car, drive the 20 minutes or so back to my house, unload the stones into the backyard... and realize that they are too small.

It turns out that Julie wasn't on crack and that I did indeed need 2'x2' paving stones after all. Sigh. I am most likely going to take them back this evening when the big car gets home, but I'm feeling a little too sheepish to drive back and return these stones at the moment after going through all of that rigamarole. That, and my precious day off is dwindling to almost nothing!

I could probably jury-rig some kind of spacing with the stones we have and the 18" ones, but I'm sure that no matter what I do it'll end up in tears if I try to cut corners. Oh well.

Monday, October 05, 2009


So I finally took some initiative today and decided that rather than thinking about maybe, sometime, you know, hopefully kinda getting around to cleaning the toxic waste dump that is the fish tank, I'd actually do the deed and get that mess cleaned up.

I just spent an hour or so up to my elbows in year old fish poop and god knows what else only to discover that sometime during the cleaning process I'd managed to crack the tank. Grr!

We're only talking about a 5 gallon tank and I think I might have found it at the curb a few years ago, but I was still hoping to get the tank set up and running in the basement where this time, I mean it, I was going to take care of it and maintain it like it needed to be maintained instead of letting it turn into algae central.

Now to decide what to do next. I'm going to get a proper filter, heater and light system for the next tank I get but I'm not sure whether to stay small or go to a 10 gallon. Of course, Garrett wants me to put an Angler Fish in whatever tank I end up getting, so we'll see. I could go salt water, though those are pretty expensive...

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Start The Show!

I arrived back at my humble abode from a day at work to find my living room completely rearranged and both of my kids in uncharacteristically boisterous moods. Garrett spent the next hour putting on his 'show'... I'm still not 100% sure what the show was, but he was pretty enthusiastic about it. He even had seating for his three audience members and a curtain made from a blanket.

It was quite heart-warming to see Kara acting like the usher for the theatre and cheer on her brother's efforts.

Cloudy With A Chance Of Awesome

Go see Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs as soon as you can. We took the kids there yesterday and we all had a great time at the movie. Unlike, say, Monsters Vs. Aliens, CWACOM does an almost Pixar-like balance of humour for adults and kids. It's especially funny if you're at all geeky.

And Mr. T is awesome.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Isn't THIS A Shocker...

Remember all of my gripes, complaints and folderol about my dealings with from a few months ago?

Well, look at what I just found in my inbox.

"Greetings Gamers,

We have had a great run here at, providing you with the latest and greatest games. Unfortunately, we don't have the manpower or capacity to keep the doors open anymore. As of October 1, 2009, we are starting the slow process of closing our doors.


We hope you've enjoyed our service as much as we enjoyed helping get gaming to Canadians."

Surprise, surprise. I wonder if they finally realized that they lost their last customer (me) and couldn't run things any longer.

At least this makes my possible options for game rentals a lot simpler., hurry up and rent games!