Sunday, February 25, 2007

Death by cat suffocation

So what I have longed suspected has finally been confirmed. Our male cat, known as Maximilian Forbes, the Grey Ghost, or Maxy depending on our mood has it out for me. That's right any minute now I expect him to come into the office and steal my soul, so this might well be my last post. And so I say to you my faithful readers, in case the police ask...


Now that we've cleared this up let me explain the events of the last few nights and how I became of this eminent feline plot to do me in. It all started a few days ago during the second snow storm of the year. The cats dislike the snow, as Lilly made clear in our last blog. Not only is it cold and wet (which is entirely too much like taking a bath for either of them) but it disrupts their favorite past time of watching the neighborhood squirrels from the windows. For those of you not familiar with this, squirrels tend to have wild nut chewing parties when the snow flies. We've had to call the cops several times on the one's living in our attic.

In any case Max was rather irritable that he couldn't heckle the squirrels from the guest bedroom window as is his wont because of the snow. I made matters worse by forcing him to suffer the greatest of indignities...taking a picture of him. Please see his reaction to this below:

The eyes are not doctored at all nor are they an effect of the flash. Indeed his eyes glowed yellow at that moment with the evil fire of his soul.

At first I thought little of the anger I had aroused in this king of beasts. Yet last night began what I can only describe as an escalating war of wills. While sitting comfortably on our couch watching a college basketball game with Wife. Max came leaping onto the arms of the couch. The suddenness of his leap surprised me as did the bushiness of his fur. I didn't think much about it but scouted over closer to Wife to give Max ample space on the couch for himself. I called him and patted the cushion for him to join.

What did I receive for my hospitality? Nothing! Well that's not entirely true, I received the cold angry gaze of a psychopathic homicidal cat.

Fearing for my health, I did what any normal person would do. I got up off the couch and moved to the other cushion, safely putting Wife between me and a cat which evidently hates humanity. What happened next? Oh of course the light in his eyes extinguishes, he hops down off the arm rest and nuzzles next to Wife with a loud and contented purr, with the occasional evil eye thrown my way!

Then came today the most affronting of insults. Preparing for a nap in bed I entered the bedroom to join wife who had proceeded me. What did I find there but this scene:

Please notice his left eye, cracked and staring into my soul looking for an opportunity to seize it. As if stealing Wife's love wasn't bad enough! (Here in the narrative is where you'd find in old times that the parchment was stained with my tears for dramatic effect, sadly telling you that loses some of its power)

Well I struck back believe you me. Just now before I began this blog I gave him a bath! Which is why I said at the outset, if I'm dead by morning, remember the cat did it.

Now for something completely different. I know our readership is more than the one person who commented on the last post. Please remember that I am a middle child and need your ratification to increase my self-worth. So comment, comment, comment!!!!!

Video of the week: Again I'm staying American here and going to recommend you pick up the 2005 Death Cab for Cutie (yes that's their name) album Plan, if you haven't done so already. If you don't know who they are here's a wonderful song about death by them...this song is even parent and grandparent safe! Enjoy.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Blizzard of '07

Well global warming, the coming Rapture, or God's giant earth warming ray did something to our winter this year. We have had a total of 20 inches of snow here in Albany. This is exactly a quarter of our average in a normal year, and a tenth of what we get some years.

Fortunately for all the kids that like missing school we got all but two inches of this snow in the storm last Wednesday. It was wonderful. All the schools shut down for two days, the highways were insane, the city and town roads were worse. It was pandemonium and certainly in no ways safe to drive...which meant of course that we both went into work.

So I arrive at my job and of course the top management had all called in sick. Meanwhile all the hourly people were becoming increasingly nervous and were coming out every few minutes to see how bad the parking lot was getting. That the storm was predicted to peak around rush hour put no one's mind at ease.

And so we worked for the first four hours of the day. Everyone nervously talking about how much the owner must care about making a profit at the expense of the life and safety of his workers (I hope he doesn't read this). Finally about 12:30 the decision comes down to send everyone home early.

Now this is a good decision, though it would have been better not to have us come in at all, but that's bitter water under the bridge. In any case the thirty+ employees left at the company spend the next hour or two digging each other out of the snow bank that is our parking lot. By this time we have about a foot of snow on the ground. It took a couple hours but Carolyn and I safely returned home, it's amazing how much longer the commute is when you go 30mph.

In any case our camera had no batteries so we weren't able to take any good photos of the snow fall but here's some of its aftermath. Including Lilly's first visit to a deep snow fall. She wasn't very pleased by this.

As I said this was a lot of snow. Sadly our poor neighbor's mailbox didn't survive the storm. What's left of it is now sitting on her front porch.

That is one unhappy cat!

Now I know very little about construction but I'd say the size of this icycle indicates that I might need to improve the insulation in my house. Guess I've got a project for my father-in-law next time he comes up!

Next Saturday will be our church's annual chili cook off. I plan on winning this year so I'll give you all a full report along with my award winning recipe when I blog again.

Now for an absolutely great song. This is New York New York from Ryan Adams Gold cd. Now that's Ryan Adams not Bryan Adams...huge difference. The main being that Ryan Adams is actually good. Wife will kill me when she reads that but it's the truth. The cool part about this video is that it was actually recorded on Sept. 7, 2001 just four days before the towers were destroyed. Even though the song was written for a girlfriend of his I think it's taken on new meaning. Enjoy!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Ode to Childlessness

First and foremost I have to give a shout out to our dear friend la Yen. She put it better than I could in her last blog.

Second and not quite foremost, I have to apologize for the length of the last blog. I know it was almost unreadable it was so long, but that's life.

Third and really not that important, to all our friends out there, STOP HAVING BABIES!!! If I hear of anymore of you procreating I'm going to move you to some sort of play date prison where all your toddlers, grade schoolers, and infanters (it only seemed right to add an -er) can scream together and throw blocks at you all! My roommates who all graduated around 2002 have now produced an estimated 24 children from five couples. Now since Carolyn and I haven't contributed to this burgeoning army we average about 6 kids per couple in five years time. Way to go guys. Since our apartment was nicknamed "The House of Groove" I can only assume that I'm the only one who doesn't know how to get my "Groove" on. Please don't leave any hints about grooving in the comments...I like to think you all conceived via immaculate conception.

In fact of the forty or so couples we've kept in good contact with over the years that meet the basic requirement of having been married at least two years only one couple besides us has kept to our pledge of buying a boat before we have children.

Really I'm disappointed with all you peoples!

Fourthly and lastly, here's a video for all of you hard rock fans out there. You know you'll love it:

I do want to add that this is one of the single worst videos and songs ever made. Also most of my statistics are made up but you guys do have way too many kids! But keep having them they're great fodder for the book.

Well fooling around on YouTube I found this video that I have to add to this post. This is one of my favorite Patty Griffin songs, I had no idea it existed in video form. Enjoy!

Monday, February 05, 2007


Okay so I'm the world's worst blogger (except for all of my friends who's blogs I check faithfully every week only to find they don't post anything) you know who you are. In any case the month of January has come and gone I've posted nary a post, except for my trip recap. I suppose part of the problem is that the Europe trip was the highlight of my life and anything else I post would be anti-climactic.

Oh dear, Wife yells at me from the other room that I sure as hell better think that our wedding was the highlight of my life and not the trip...looks like I'm sleeping on the couch tonight. Which, by the way is number 2 on our list of ways not to get pregnant, number 1 is having a penis. That usually rules out pregnancy, well unless that National Enquirer article was telling the truth. But I digress.

In any event life has been good and wonderful and chilly here in our home of late. The cats have been friendly (yes it is possible), the weather has been freezing, and I've been baking more than I have in years. All in all things are going well.

The highlight of the last month's events has to be our annual Super Bowl party (registered trademark). Three years ago our dear friends the Shephards and us discussed putting together a holiday party for all our friends. The idea was that so many of our friends were far from their homes that it would be good fun to eat all together. I offered to bake a turkey and food assignments were made.

Sadly a tragedy interrupted our plans, my sister-in-law got married. Now that might sound harsh but it meant that our holiday party had to be postponed as we flew from the cold snowy climbs of the northeast to the not quite as cold but just as snowy climbs of northern Utah (because we can't go on winter holidays to places like Hawaii or Mexico like normal people). And so it went, each weekend some one's plans kept us from our get together, until finally we realized that the one weekend no one had plans was the greatest weekend of the year, Super Bowl weekend.

And so we planned a small little get together of ten or twelve friends. The kitchen of the hosts overflowed with rolls, stuffing, potatoes, desserts, and of course my turkey.

The first super bowl turkey bash was so successful that we had to repeat it the next year. SBTB II (Super Bowl Turkey Bash II) was similar though the party grew by a couple or two and the first child appeared.

Now once again tragedy struck. The host for the first two bashes moved (if only Albany had rent control). Where were we to find a new local for our annual event? Well it was decided that we were to host the party as our house was the most central location. Yet between SBTB II and SBTB III something else had happened. While some of our friends had moved even more had entered the circle of friends, and more disturbing some had started to procreate!!! So this year SBTB III, reached its highest attendance level ever 20 adults and 5 children. How does one feed that size of a crowd? Well a 20 pound turkey with two pans of potatoes, a thing of green bean casserole, a wonderful spinach artichoke dip, and nameless other sides and desserts helps.

The sad part is that there were more friends I felt bad for not including so next year we'll probably max out our SBTB IV at 30+ (assuming that our friends insist on continuing their breeding). I guess I'll have to feed them all an emu or ostrich or that'll have to be one hell of a turkey.

Oh and the game was okay I guess.

Also I have found out a few things about myself lately that I felt I should share:

1. I have a problem with authority. All of you who are reading this probably knew that though.
2. I need to move somewhere truly liberal. I've spent my entire adult life living in conservative areas (Utah and Upstate NY) and I'm becoming more and more liberal with each passing day. As manifest by my renting and agreeing with "An Inconvenient Truth" and "Who Killed the Electric Car" (both were very thought provoking though I thought the later a little less propaganda oriented).
3. I'm a very grumpy man.
4. Oh and I just learned that I evidently hate America...
Your 'Do You Want the Terrorists to Win' Score: 94%

You are a terrorist-loving, Bush-bashing, "blame America first"-crowd traitor. You are in league with evil-doers who hate our freedoms. By all counts you are a liberal, and as such clearly desire the terrorists to succeed and impose their harsh theocratic restrictions on us all. You are fit to be hung for treason! Luckily George Bush is tapping your internet connection and is now aware of your thought-crime. Have a nice day.... in Guantanamo!

Do You Want the Terrorists to Win?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

(I thought you all would like this. Thank you Sina for pointing it out.)

Well that's...sorry for how long a post it was today. Next week will be a recounting of the epic battle of Wife vs. the Albino Midgets...stay tuned.

Oh and if anyone is interested I'll try to get a post up about how to make the perfect turkey sometime soon, but only if you people are interested.

And here's the rest of our trip photos, peruse them at your leisure.

Hadrian's Wall
Miscellaneous Shots