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December 31, 2002

New Gallery

Okay, after a long hiatus, there's a new banner atop this log, linking to a new gallery, holiday themed, of course. I took off all the days between Christmas and New Year (four work days), and I've been rationing my Internet time. Okay, I'm still fiddling with Mac OS X programming, and playing Diablo II (and Fallout 2), but I'm not cruising the usual sites, and I haven't felt interested in posting.

Maybe over the next few days I'll try to catch up. If not, sue me.

Posted by dpwakefield at 05:28 PM

December 23, 2002

Flaming Lips

I've been listening to Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots lately. Since I don't listen to pop radio, and I don't watch MTV, it's easy to fool myself into thinking I've discovered something counterculture, but that don't make it so. I'd read about the Flaming Lips on various weblogs, and gotten the impression that they were a group known to a bunch of young in-crowd web design types, and decided to give them a try.

Now I don't really watch commercials either, since I've got ReplayTV, but the other night I was 'watching' a show while working a griddler puzzle. When I work puzzles or munge about with my laptop, I sometimes miss that the commercials have started and one or two get past me before I skip the rest. And so it was that night. I'm hearing in the background various babble including the umistakable voice of Penn Gillette, saying "it's 37! 37, okay?"

So I looked up, and there was a scene out of Beetlejuice (the afterlife waiting room, to be specific). A bunch of guys in bunny suits are surrounded by all sort sof oddballs, including Penn. Then a door opens, and a guy calls out, "Flaming Lips, you're up!" The bunnies get up and leave the room, and the next thing I see is them performing a song from the album I recently bought. Okay, I was fooled. They're mass-market, commercials and everything. Ya got me.

But how's the album? Pretty good, overall. The opening song, "Flight Test", is a very good example of putting your best foot forward, and gets the album off to an enchanting start. I'm kinda disappointed in the title song, or anyway, "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, pt. 1. Pt. 2 is no-longer-experimental mix-up electronic noodling and sampling, and I like it quite a lot, thanks.

No blow-by-blow on this album. It's pretty homogeneous, so if you like one song, you'll most likely enjoy the others. I'm keeping it in my rotation for the time being. But I'm already itching for something new.

Posted by dpwakefield at 11:26 AM

Household Hints

Don't put corn husks (or cornsilk) down the garbage disposal.

Yeah, I know, but I'm a guy! I expect a food grinder to grind food, by gum! Jean's been after me for putting cantaloupe rinds, grape stems and everything else down there, and now, the corn husks were the 'straw' that broke the disposal's back. It was jammed up good. But if eggshells are okay, bits of bread, oatmeal, and so on, where do I draw the line? When I do the laundry, everything goes into the same load, and the same temperature, dammit! If the clothes can't handle it, then buy better clothes!

So before suggesting we buy a 40hp garbage disposal with carbide blades, I called the 800 number labelled on the side. This was a voice menu which offered helpfully:

"If you'd like tips on how to fix your disposal, press 1. If you'd like the number of a local authorized repair service, press 2. If -- "

2

So I got through to a guy and described the problem. "Can you send a guy over?"

"Did you try the wrench?" he asked.

"There's a wrench?"

"Yep, it should have come with your disposal. It's a 3/8 " alan wrench. Insert it into the base and twist it around. Should clear things up. If not, call me back."

So I hunted around in the kitchen drawers, looking for a hefty alan wrench. Sure enough, I found one, labelled 'disposal wrench' in the metal, no less. A couple of twists, and it's working again! W00t! Now I can put corn husks in again! Just kidding, Jean.

But seriously, can I have a list?

Posted by dpwakefield at 10:47 AM

Sunday Report

Sunday was much less crowded than Saturday. I got up and did my chores, decided to save strength training for Monday, so did just the Bikeler. After a shower and a brief lunch, I got into dishes and laundry. One of the nice things about modern convenience appliances is that for a large part of the time, you aren't really doing anything. So once the loads were running, I fired up Diablo II and applied some of the knowledge I'd gleaned by reading the first ten pages of the manual, finally.

Man, is that game a timesink! I'd get up occasionally to check the laundry, unload the dishwasher, etc., but in toto, I think I wasted three hours this time. I gotta get a new computer in the den, so I can move this game over there and spare Jean, who patiently waited while I played.

In the evening, before preparing for dinner, I took Kelly for a walk to a neighborhood where I knew a lot of the homeowners had gone nuts with the Christmas lights. It was misting lightly, and wasn't cold at all, so it was a very nice walk, about a half hour in all. Then it was time for a Snapper fish dinner, with sweet potatoes (no, not fries).

Posted by dpwakefield at 10:34 AM

Saturday Report

Kelly is a real schemer. We went grocery shopping and her school is having a raffle in front of the store. For the second week in a row, she got Jean to give her a dollar so that she could buy a ticket. Great, support the school, all that, I thinks. We went about our shopping business, and as we left, Kelly got involved talking to somebody, so I grabbed a dollar and bought a raffle ticket too. Jean said that the raffle person told her that they weren't selling many, so I was thinking I'd do my part, and maybe have better odds as well. On the way to the car, Kelly seemed a little miffed, and Jean explained. It seems Kelly planned on winning a specific prize, the Xbox. Then since she owned it, she'd make Daddy ask permission to use it!

Geez, what gratitude! I let her use the PS2 pretty much any time it's practical (Jean's not using the downstairs tv, it's before Kelly's bedtime, etc.). Now I'm a competitor for 'her' prize. Sorry kiddo, maybe next week I'll bring a twenty! Or maybe I'll just give her a dollar or two myself. We'll see...

So now I know what Armagnac tastes like. Trouble is, it's been so long since I've tasted any kind of brandy, that I couldn't tell you if this is rougher than cognac or what. Jean, Kelly and I made the trip to John Barleycorn, which is a McMenamins restaurant ten minutes from where we live. This is incidentally one of the post-NOVA hangouts when no movie is handy.

We went for lunch on Saturday, Jean playing designated driver since I knew I wanted to try the Armagnac. I'd heard one of those 'color' stories on NPR about the history of Armagnac, and how it is fading away in the face of more populist liquors, so when I saw it on the menu at Barleycorn's one post-NOVA night, I decided I had to try it (despite the possibility that the brand served by Barleycorn's might be one of the 'tweaked' versions with more sugar that desperate producers have been experimenting with to try to bring back business, and incidentally hastening the demise of genuine Armagnac).

Result: it was smooth and quite pleasant tasting. I'll have to try the cognac some other time to see if there is a noticable difference. Food-wise, Jean had a salad, Kelly had a honkin' cheeseburger, and ate it all, and I had the fish tacos. Yum! We shared a hummus plate as well.

Saturday evening was the NOVA Christmas party, and food was brought by all. I pigged out, and got a shake and sweet potato fries at Burgerville on the way to Tom's after the meeting, so my weight spiked a good five pounds. Going down now, thanks.

There was a bit of Christmas themed anime, but otherwise it was a standard meeting. I'd already handed out my presents to select friends at the previous meeting since I was unsure Alan was going to be in town this weekend. So I got to receive without giving this time. Alan got me a book on taking better family portraits. I'm gonna have to cram between now and Christmas morning to see if there are any good ideas for good spontaneous photos. Tom got me a Code Monkey T-Shirt from Think Geek, and I'm wearing it now! Yahoo! Finally, John Jackson got me an Indian epic, since he knew I was curious about Indian cinema. My memory is so shoddy I can't remember if I got him a present or not. I'll just have to double up and get him a treat post-holidays. King Hu's A Touch of Zen is out on DVD, maybe he'd like that? I'm getting it for myself, so maybe I'll just buy two copies.

We all piled into Tom's apartment to view the Canadian DVD of Brotherhood of the Wolf, which we'd seen in the theatre, but had fun watching again. While there, I got to sample Tom's gift to Alan, a bottle of Oregon made Sake. It was served in tiny glasses, so since I had a single one, you know I'm not a souse! Finally it was time to go home, and I drove safely, rest assured.

Posted by dpwakefield at 10:21 AM

December 20, 2002

Saint Lucia in a Coal Mine

The words I was fumbling for regarding the lighting at the Church last Sunday are reciprocity failure. In this case, it would be moot, as I was hand holding the camera and had live moving subjects, so the fact that I was frequently shooting at 1/8 second means there'll be much blur, but there could be reciprocity failure too. Just wanted to note that down since I'm trying to get all this SLR tech lingo straight in my head.

By the by, the film is still sitting on the shelf at home. Development could take another week, then I have to get my butt in gear and scan any decent results. So don't hold your breath.

Posted by dpwakefield at 08:27 AM

December 19, 2002

RSS Errors

Gee, my RSS hack is supposed to catch <'s and properly encode them as &lt;. However, my RSS version of the previous post drops the <'s and >'s from the post, making for nonsensical template code (to a C++ programmer, anyway). Guess I'll just have to get more 'sophisticated' if I want to write about C++...

Posted by dpwakefield at 10:51 AM

Geek Alert

Working with older compilers can be such fun. Cygnus 2.90 C++ had only partially implemented member template functions, so attempting to call them thusly:


Foo foo;


foo.bar < int > ();

caused a compiler error: "parse error before `>'".

At the same time, there is a feature in ISO Standard C++, the '.template' mechanism, meant to be used inside function templates when an object depends on a template parameter. Doing this:


foo.template bar < int > ();

causes the program to compile, and work as expected, even though the '.template' mechanism shouldn't apply to this case. One 'bug' fixes another.

Posted by dpwakefield at 10:38 AM

December 18, 2002

He Has No Nose

Though not as combative as Karl Popper, or as condescending as Wittgenstein, I suppose I'm no angel. Today's QOTD reminded me of a recent meeting of NOVA. A certain unnamed individual was complaining that the club web pages didn't give directions to the meeting. "Yes they do," I muttered. Others piped up with this info.

"Well, they're not linked to from the News page," was his next complaint. "Yes they are," I said, sotto voce. Again a chorus of folks volunteered that it was plainly there.

"Anyway, there are no directions on which bus to take to get to the meeting..."

Exasperated, I asked myself "from where?" Folks pointed out that he could go to the Trimet website and get detailed route info including schedules, by punching in starting and destination addresses. He grumbled something about how that should all be on the club pages.

At this point, I simply lost patience. Without raising my voice, I said, "I can't help you if you're stupid." I wish I'd had the Wittgenstein quote handy at the time. Rudeness raised to an elegant level...

Posted by dpwakefield at 02:59 PM

QOTD

Although Carnap always deferred to Wittgenstein, his persistent, politely phrased and thoughtful questions about how Wittgenstein reached conclusion Z from assumptions X and Y would be dismissed as the preoccupations of a pedant. "If he doesn't smell it, I can't help him. He just has no nose."

Wittgenstein's Poker

Posted by dpwakefield at 08:20 AM

December 17, 2002

One Beat

Okay, One Beat isn't as big a disappointment as I'd feared. I figured out what specifically was bugging me about it. The first, eponymous song, is led by one of the members (they all do vocals, so I'm not sure who) in an uncanny female impression of Geddy Lee (Rush's lead singer). I hate Geddy Lee. Don't worry, I'll get over it.

So the album itself is okay, not "an album so colossal that all prefixes to the label 'rock band' must be immediately discarded" as the linked review would have it, but okay in an idiosyncratic way. If I want a killer female rock album, I'll listen to Patti Smith (I know, dating myself here) or vintage Throwing Muses. Sleator-Kinney is in fact a decent little cult band. Play five times, and store in desk.

Posted by dpwakefield at 01:59 PM

Kelly The Philosopher

I've been reading Wittgenstein's Poker, by David Edmonds and John Eidinow, in dribs and drabs for weeks now. I got it from the library, and it is exactly the sort of book that stretches the limits of renewals, at least with my current lifestyle. When Jean and I were first together, no kid, I could work my way through anywhere from fifty to one hundred fifty books a year (I kept count). But my entertainment habits have changed (more television, more computer time, more game console, more parenting), and I doubt I read ten or twenty books a year (I note them, but don't count anymore).

So anyway, I was talking about Poker with Jean last night, doing that annoying thing I do where I read quotes out of the book, and she makes meaningful "mm-hmm"s. I want to dig out one quote by Wittgenstein where he insults another philosopher/mathematician, Carnap, and post it here, as it is illustrative of what a jerk he was. As it turns out, Karl Popper, the other central figure in the book, was also an abusive personality.

Kelly got in on the conversation, wanting to know why these guys were such meanies. I tried to explain that while it was not an excuse, these guys were geniuses in their field, which led many to tolerate their eccentricities and rudeness. I was filling the bathtub for Kelly's bath by this time, and she asked me to stay with her. "Okay, but I'm gonna read my book while I sit here."

"Can you read it out loud?"

"What, my Wittgenstein book? I don't think you'll find it interesting. It's a lot of talk about these two guys, where they were from, why they differed, and so on. Do you really want me to read it?"

Kelly said yes, and I proceeded to read aloud from a passage describing Karl Popper's aggressive behavior toward students, colleagues and random members of the audience during any given lecture. "Argue, argue, argue" seems to be the key phrase. Even in expressing condolences to Margaret Thatcher that she had lost her election, he included the statement that some of her policies were wrong.

Then came a passage describing how kind he could be, how he would unstintingly write recommendations for his graduate students, help them find jobs. How he tried to help friends mend their rocky marriages. A long list of examples of areas of his life where he was quite generous -- so long as it did not touch on philosophy.

Kelly pitched in at this moment: "now they're talking about a different Popper, even though it's the same man. He can behave two different ways, like he has two lives."

I was surprised and pleased. "Yes, Kelly, that's exactly it. You really were paying attention, weren't you?" I hope this teaches me (or begins to teach me) not to underestimate what goes on in that mind of hers. Next time she asks me to read one of my books to her, I'll oblige, though I won't expect her to be interested or pay attention every time!

By the way, we wrapped up the evening reading two chapters from Matilda, by Roald Dahl.

Posted by dpwakefield at 08:51 AM

December 16, 2002

Quest for Leisure

Jean's on break from classes, so she gave me a 'Christmas gift' this weekend by picking up some of the household chores I'd been doing to give her more study time. Result: I logged about two hours playing Diablo II on Sunday morning. It's pretty fun, but I have got to get out of the habit of playing games for several hours before consulting the manual.

Posted by dpwakefield at 09:11 AM

Spirograph Nebula

I just like the name, but the picture is cool too.

Posted by dpwakefield at 08:43 AM

Christmas Strife

I really haven't had much to report of late. Mostly the daily routine, work at the office, work at home, you know the drill. So I was expecting the dry spell to continue over the weekend when Jean mentioned that Kelly was going to be participating in the Christmas show at her Sunday School. "Cool," I thought, "I'll use up the rest of that slide film and shoot a roll of negatives."

So we all piled into the car and headed out. On arriving I discovered that the church was going to be too dark for the ISO 100 slide film I had left in my camera, so I wandered outside and took a few random shots to use it up. Inside I loaded up a roll of ISO 400 negative film, but the metering system still had me shooting 1/8 second at maximum aperture, so I doubt they're going to turn out.

Kelly looked darling in her St. Lucia costume, holding a crystal plate with crescent rolls as symbolic bread. The drill was that each kid represented a country and their traditions in re Christmas. In between these little presentations, all the kids would stand together and sing a Christmas favorite.

It was during one of these that Kelly disappointed me, quite a lot. There was a little boy next to her who wanted to point the (currently inactive) microphone down towards him. Kelly pushed his hand away and pointed the mike back up, towards her. He reached over again, and she swatted his hand. It became a push-me pull-you match that, while it never erupted into actual violence, looked very bad for Kelly. Jean and I were calling her name quietly and gesturing at her to cut it out, but she made eye contact with us and made it clear that she didn't care, she was going to control the situation. Some of the teachers were trying to get her to cool it too.

In all, it didn't ruin the event. I think most people thought is was just one of those kid things, and some may have chuckled. But I'm very disappointed. Jean had apparently seen some of this during rehearsals and warned Kelly to avoid just this sort of behavior, so it's not as if Kelly was engaging in some impulsive act, with no forethought. Sad day. Jean and I must talk about how to handle this. Too bad.

Posted by dpwakefield at 08:39 AM

December 09, 2002

Weekend Update

Saturday was the usual melange of activities. I dragged Kelly with me on grocery chores, including a trip to Costco. Since she was helpful, I treated her to a Berry Smoothy at the Costco food kiosk. When we got home, we had a quick lunch, then raced off to see Santa at Wizer's. This guy is a very good Santa, and is there every year. He brings his own genuine white beard, and I suppose he doses up on eggnog for those authentic rosy cheeks. I tried taking a few pictures to use up my Photography Class slide film, but it's ISO 100, and the lighting was a bit dim for that, especially to try for candid shots. So I'm not hoping for much.

After we got back, I played math tutor to Jean, reviewing her homework with her. She's getting quite good.

This was a NOVA weekend. Tom and I went out and grabbed something to eat during the meeting, meaning I missed the first half of Cheeky Angel. Fortunately, Dan, the purveyor of this current favorite, had that episode loaded up on his fancy multimedia laptop, and let me watch it separately during a different part of the meeting. Afterwards, we skipped movies and went to McMenamin's for something to eat. I was surprised to see that they carried Armagnac, which I'd recently heard touted on NPR as the brandy the Three Musketeers would drink. I talked to Jean on Sunday, and she's going to be my designated driver so I can try a glass

Sunday I worked out, did my household chores (while talking to my Dad on the phone simultaneously), had lunch, then dragged Kelly down to work to walk and run around campus for some exercise. We went to Fry's to try to buy her a Worm Light for her Gameboy Color, but they only had a new version for the Gameboy Advance, which had a tab that would prevent using it with the GBC. We stopped at Fred Meyer on the way home to check their game section, and same problem. I may have to order one from Amazon.

Anyway, we went from there to the Coldstone Creamery, a new ice cream store in the area. Turns out it's one of those places where they mix stuff in while you watch, chopping it up and folding it into the ice cream. I just wanted a simple child's scoop as a treat for Kelly, but we got roped in for the full production. I had a root beer while Kelly worked her way through the agglomeration.

Then we went home, and started working on making dinner. Dover sole, a cornish game hen for Kelly, acorn squash and corn on the cob. Yum! Kelly's appetite didn't seem spoiled at all. Oh, yeah, the Christmas tree is up already, so we got to eat by tree-light.

Kelly was digging around downstairs and found my copy of Okage, and wanted to play it. I reminded her that we quit it because she had gotten bored with it, but she's made up her mind. The next time I'll have time to play it with her will be Tuesday, so I'll try to give a report sometime this week.

Posted by dpwakefield at 10:39 AM

December 08, 2002

Mmmm, Tomato Sauce!

Well, Pascale was talking about the sauce, so all I have to feel bad about is that I ain't got any! Wonder how well it'd keep shipped FedEx?

Posted by dpwakefield at 03:00 PM

December 06, 2002

Snow Lovers, Pshaw!

Pascale marvels at the presence of snow in D.C.:

We left after D- finished, and I slogged home with wet and frozen feet (because of the snow, y'know?), bought some groceries, and have spent the early evening cooking up a vast vat of tomato sauce (with garlic and onions and veggie crumbles) suitable for sticking to ribs on long, cold, snowy!!!! oh my god, SNOWY!!! nights. Darn tasty. Don't you wish you had some?

To which I replied:

Tomato sauce with garlic, onions, and veggie crumbles? Yes, that sounds good!

Or, were you talking about the snow? If so, the answer's Hell No! I spent several years in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, as my Dad's draught horse, clearing the sidewalks and driveways every morning and evening (though in later years he had mercy on me and hired a neighbor to plow our lot). Walking across the yard and onto the roof of the garage (yes, the drifts got that high). Fifty-below wind-chill at night. 'Snorkel' jackets, with a hood opening like a periscope, so you had to turn your whole body to look both ways before crossing the street... You get the idea.

The winter weather in Lower Michigan and Ohio weren't much more pleasant. So I've had my fill of snow.

Oh, I spent the first part of my childhood in Washington, D.C. (I was born there). And I *remember* the city getting hit with a blizzard, covered in a whole *two inches* of snow. Immobilized, even! As a kid, I actually enjoyed it.

But then, as a kid, I set a record for 1,000 consecutive pogo stick jumps (some whipping back and forth 30 or 40 degrees from vertical, but always in control, yeah) in 90 degree, 90% humidity weather the following summer, so you have to weigh my sanity at that age (head felt like a balloon afterwards).

Posted by dpwakefield at 08:42 AM

December 04, 2002

I Got the Music In Me

I finished up my family Christmas shopping by letting my fingers do the walking (and my mouse ). A package from Amazon is 'virtually' winging it's way toward me. As a Christmas treat to myself, which I'll open early, I did indeed buy a copy of Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots by The Flaming Lips.

Now all I have to do is pick out something for my Da, and I'll be done for the year.

Posted by dpwakefield at 02:11 PM

December 03, 2002

Zoo Train

While it was uncomfortably cool Sunday night, we did brave the elements to make it to the Zoolights Festival. It's a measure of how much of a stick in the mud I am, that in the fourteen or fifteen years I've been in Oregeon, I've never gone to this. And now that I have, I'm glad I did. We're not talking stellar displays of lights, Fantasia fireworks shows or starlight parades, just simple animal silhouette Christmas-style lights, some of them moving in primitive stop-motion across the grounds.

When we got there, we made a beeline for the train, so we could do the loop before it got too cold. Kelly was oohing and ahing at all the light displays, naming animals and imitating their calls, much to the annoyance of fellow passengers, I'm sure. But she mostly kept it in check, so I did nothing to kill her enthusiasm. She had some impulse control problems when it came to 'staying with the group', which in a dark zoo was a bit frightening.

After the train ride, we walked around the zoo grounds, ending at the Africafe so Kelly could have something to eat. A measure of her growing sophistication is that she now 'gets' puns like Africafe. I'm tickled, anyway.

Kelly was not ready to leave at 8pm, despite our assurances that the zoo was in fact closing at 8. I said we had to leave or we'd end up trapped in the zoo at night, when they turn all the animals loose to run wild around the zoo. She didn't buy that.

Posted by dpwakefield at 01:53 PM

I'm Not Anxious, Really

By the way, the visit to the doctor resulted in an extension of the prescription. He seemed mildly surprised that the short treatment (ten days) hadn't killed off the nervous tic, but continued to be confident of his diagnosis. So I'm gonna continue taking Lorazepam (an anti-anxiety drug, among other things) for a month! I've read that there are anecdotal indications of withdrawal problems when discontinuing Lorazepam (mostly discomfort), so I'll talk to him before they run out to see what to watch out for.

Posted by dpwakefield at 01:28 PM

Thanks Brenda!

My sister Brenda pulled my chestnuts out of the fire, emailing me the number of my Dad's new place in Florida. According to her, he "waited around all day" for me to call on Thanksgiving. Oops. Sorry about that Dad. Look for a call on Sunday. You can stand me up if it makes you feel better.

Posted by dpwakefield at 01:19 PM

Music For Programmers

I put on one of my 'older' albums over lunch: Drawn From Life by Brian Eno. No Tom, he doesn't sing on this one (though Laurie Anderson does some of her vocal performance art -- if I wasn't already married, I think I'd want to marry her). This album, though recent (2001) is from his ambient music period. Music as wallpaper. Right up there with Music For Airports. When in a coding trance, I really love this sort of stuff. I was listening to Sigur Ros (Agaetis Byrjun) before that.

Speaking of Sigur Ros, I was at Fred Meyer picking up a new prescription today, and almost, almost picked up their new one, ( ). I really, really want it, but I decided to wait and buy a few more albums by bands I don't yet have before doing a repeat. Sleater Kinney is next up in my play rotation, but I'm thinking it was a failed experiment, so I need some new buzz. Maybe The Flaming Lips? Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots is in my Amazon wishlist rotation....

Posted by dpwakefield at 01:16 PM

December 02, 2002

Treasure Cineplex

Treasure Planet turned out to be a lot of fun. I'm struggling to remember which version of Treasure Island I saw as a kid where I formed my notions of Long John Silver. It could be the 1934 version with Wallace Beery. By 1950 they were all in color, and I distinctly remember the play of light found only in classic black and white movies.

Long John Silver is a priceless role, complex and hammy at the same time. You'd think in the dozen versions made that there would be an array of stars playing Silver, all vying for this classic role. In fact Orson Welles played Silver in one version, Charleton Heston another, and as I recall, Wallace Beery was excellent. Even Jack Palance I can see. But browsing over some of the choices ... Vic Tayback? Um, no.

So anyways, I'm watching the animated performance of Silver in Treasure Planet, and I get this eerie feeling that the animators have seen the same movie I vaguely remember from my childhood. He's got that same unctuous devilishness, the underlying emotional complexity I remember from the past. Brian Murray seems to have a rather spotty media presence, so maybe he is more of a stage actor. In any case, his performance was just spot on.

There were the usual comic relief characters, including the non-gender-specific 'animal' mascot, a shape-shifting creature called Morph. Kelly got the biggest kick out of that, so I guess the Disney formula is not to be sniffed at.

One side-effect of this outing is that I may be going to a movie I'd hoped to avoid. There was a huge three-dimensional display in the lobby promoting Adam Sandler's Eight Crazy Nights. It included a button labelled "Don't push the button". Kelly pushed it, and was treated to Adam Sandler in a mugging cartoon voice screeching "Why did you push the button?!? It said don't push the button..." and so on. So she started in on me. Gotta see this Daddy.

"Gee, Kelly, it says PG-13. I guess that means we can't go."

"What's PG-13, Daddy?"

"It means Parental Guidance is required. I think it means you have to be at least 13..."

"Let's ask her!" said Kelly, pointing to the young woman in the box office.

The young woman explained that PG-13 is advisory only, so that even children could see the movie, but parents might want to know, if their kids are under 13.

"So do I have to be below 13 to see Eight Crazy Nights?", she asked, making a barrier gesture with her hand, as if to say: 'you must be this tall to ride on the Adam Sandler Express'.

We all had a good chuckle over that, but in the end Kelly came away with the impression that she had a god given right to see this movie. I tried telling her it was gross. "What's that mean Daddy?"

"Well, Kelly, there's lots of 'rude noise' jokes."

"I like those. They're funny."

"Okay, but it may be boring. It's the usual bad boy discovers how to be the neighborhood saint through working with a sports league. Dull, huh?"

"I like the part where the grandmother says, 'Norman, I'm scared', but she really isn't."

I can tell I'm not gaining any ground here. My plan for now is to simply not mention the thing. Maybe she'll forget. I hope I hope.

Posted by dpwakefield at 10:48 AM

December 01, 2002

Holiday Report

Thursday was fun. I made my holiday tofu chili, Jean made turkey, Kelly helped out in general. I tried to find the number for my Dad's new Florida digs, but as usual I flaked. Last time we spoke, he dictated it to me, and I jotted it on the pages of a tech journal article I was reading, but now I can't find the article. Hopefully he'll call, or Brenda will email me the number.

Friday saw the expiration of a prescription I was taking for a nerve tic (doctor's diagnosis so far, anyway), and by Friday evening the tic was back in full force, keeping me up most of the night. Saturday was surreal, and I called the doctor's on-call line to get an extension of the prescription until I have my next appointment on Tuesday. It worked, and I was able to sleep last night. Amazing the difference sleep makes in your attitude.

Today I fixed our salmon supper for lunch, since we are planning on going to the Zoolights Festival at the Oregon Zoo this evening. In about an hour, Kelly and I will probably be going to see Treasure Planet. Tomorrow she has no school, so Jean is going to drop her off at my work place while she has an appointment. Kelly will get to meet all my coworkers in the hour she's there.

That's all, folks!

Posted by dpwakefield at 01:23 PM