The things we do

I have (had) an orange fish in my tank that has been eating the tails off the others. We gave him every chance, but today the decision came down from the governer that he would receive no pardon.

We fished (no pun intended) him out of the tank and headed for the bathroom. On the way, Becca thought the cats might like a treat. Turns out, they don’t eat live fish. During this process, Colton caught wind of the fact that the little fish was not long for this world. He was upset and wanted to know if we would take the fish back to the store so he could find a new home.

I laughed and we said yes, figuring we would just go throw him in the woods (the fish, not Colton).

Nope. Becca is on the way to the store right now, to give the fish a second chance. We could buy and sell that stupid fish 100 times over for what it will cost in gas to take him back. The things we do for our kids.

Debt and excuses

Joseph Sangle put up a great post about excuses when it comes to getting out of debt. His philosophy is it doesn’t matter whether you are making $25,000 or $200,000, there is no excuse for the mountains of debt we carry.

He’s mad and he’s not going to take it anymore. Joseph has a great blog dedicated to helping people get out of debt. He is, I believe, the pastor in charge of such things at Newspring Church in Anderson, NC.

43 vs. 57

I noticed this morning that I was coming up on post number 100 (which this is) and thought I’d look at the totals. In all of last year I wrote 57 entries. In January of this year, I’ve written 43 so far. I’m actually proud of myself for keeping up with my writing like I want to.

Best wife ever

I just wanted to let everyone out there looking for a wife to know the best one is taken.

I came home from a fire today to discover that Becca had rearranged a good chunk of my office. It looks great. Plus, she managed to fit my fooseball table in here. What design firm doesn’t have a fooseball table in the office?

She’s learned not to tell me ahead of time about her interior decorating ideas. I usually tell her no, partly because I think I know best (which I usually don’t) and partly because I don’t like moving furniture. I never fails, though, that her ideas are great and I end up loving it.

PDF magazines

This link on Coudal.com refreshed an idea I’ve been wanting to research for a while. That is the creation and distribution of .pdf magazines. How much of a market is there for these things? It really allows you to create anything you want and distribute it for a fraction of the cost of a traditional print publication. Do any of you regularly read anything in .pdf format?

Kia K2500


Some great ads from Kia for their new K2500. I really like looking for the new ways people are using traditional media spaces. This execution, using the bottom strip of the front page is creative and very interesting. People tend to either love or hate these executions because of their intrusion on the editorial space. I personally like them, but I spend more time in the advertising camp than the editorial one.

Via AdverBox.

Tech gremlins

For some reason if it can go wrong, it has gone wrong lately. First we had still unexplained e-mail issues for about two weeks. Then this weekend my Airport Express decided to take a one day vacation leaving us without wireless internet, but mysteriously worked fine the next day. Then, Saturday, one of the hard drives in my PowerMac decided to start acting up.

Today I have to spend the better part of the morning reinstalling OS X on a new hard drive and reinstalling every program I have. I’ve never had to do something this extensive, so please pray for me. I use Apple computers because they almost never have problems. Because of the usual lack of issue, I have no patience for tech problems.

UPDATE #1: OS X has been installed on the new hard drive and we’re now updating all programs. I’ll give one thing to Apple, they make reinstalling all this stuff fairly simple. I’ve never actually done any of this before, but it’s going smoothly.

Sour cream and onion

I’m always amazed at the power of our senses to transport us to a different time and place.

On a recent grocery run, I grabbed a bag of Ruffles Sour Cream & Onion chips. I haven’t bought them in years. Nowhere on the bag did it indicate they had recently added memories to the recipe.

It was just a normal afternoon. There was nothing remarkable about it, and that’s usually when something extraordinary happens. A few chips sounded like a great mid-day snack. As that first chip hit my tongue, I was gone.

Suddenly, I was six years old, sitting at a light brown card table in my Grandma’s living room. I was munching on a few chips while Granny, as I call her, was in the kitchen making a bowl of bean dip. The Rangers were playing a Saturday afternoon game on the TV. A game of Yahtzee was spread out on the table in front of me.

Granny walks in with the bowl of bean dip and a small plate with sliced cheese. She always spoiled me. My favorite meal at her house was chips, bean dip and cheese. Real healthy.

That one little taste of a chip brought back memories I hadn’t experienced in years. Even as I write this, I still marvel at the wonderful memories, while still being sad they will never happen again.

My brother and I would rotate spending the night with her on Fridays. She lived in a small mobile home just outside Snyder, in West Texas.

I am reminded of how much fun we used to have, but especially the little details. I remember the sound of the heater in the winter. Being a mobile home, the heat came through vents in the floor. I used to love laying by those vents, soaking up the heat. I remember watching ball games with her while she introduced me to games like Wahoo and dominoes. Always on the rickety little card table.

The porch outside was surrounded by black metal railing that seemed a little to wobbly to actually stop someone from falling off. Down the cold concrete stairs was the large circular driveway with small dips in it. When it rained, the dips would fill up and become vast oceans for my G.I. Joes to fight around.

Then, there was my first bb gun. Granny would take me to shoot cans out near the woods. I became the first grandson to shoot her when one rogue bb ricocheted off a can and hit her in the shin. She never let me forget that.

I remember her small blue car, I think it was a Chevrolet, and the trips to town we would go on. On one of those trips to the local K-Mart, she bought me a small Hot Wheels car. It was an army vehicle with moving missles and everything. I felt so special because she spent all her “silver money” on it. I think it was a grand total of seventy five cents, but I felt like royalty because she had given everything she had in her coin purse.

In the grand scheme of things, a very small part of my life was spent at Granny’s, but it continues to influence me even today.

Today Granny lives in an assisted living center in Weatherford. Her health seems to get worse week by week, and we’re not sure how long she will remain with us. When I see her now, she often mistakes me for my Dad. She doesn’t remember much, but one thing she always tells me is about the fact that Cody and I always stayed with her and “never forgot who’s turn it was to spend the night.”

They say within three generations no one will remember you. As I think of my Granny, that makes me very sad that if I don’t do something, my kids and their kids after them will know nothing of this great woman and the influence she had on my life. It’s our job to make sure no one forgets the great ones. And Granny truly is one of the great ones.

All that from a stupid little chip.

Note: I had to take a break half-way through writing this. During that break we visited my parents who informed me that my aunt and uncle are selling their land. That land was where Granny’s house was, and where I have so many memories. I’m going to take my boys and visit it one last time before it leaves the family. It’s funny how all this comes back at once, but I feel sad that a piece of my childhood will only exist in my memories.

Tarleton MLK again

The Tarleton incident I wrote about yesterday is still in the headlines today with another story at Fox News. It has also been picked up by the Associated Press.

My question is, now what?

We’ve all heard the story and read the details. Some of us have expressed our views on the party and the people involved. Now what? What should we expect from this? Punishments, lessons? What does everyone involved expect to happen next?

Obviously nothing can be done to “fix it,” but can something be done to head in that direction?

Such a geek

My wife is incredibly cool. In fact, if you combine her coolness with her hotness (yes, coolness and hotness are words), it’s quite obvious I married up. Occasionally, though, her geeky side shows through.

Of course, today wasn’t one of those days.

I heard the printer on my desk hum to life. “Becca must be printing something,” I thought.

The page slowly came out, one swipe at a time. It read “One Free Month.” “Cool,” I thought.

I walked from my office into the living room. “Hey, we get a free month,” I said. “Score.”

She smiled as she took the paper from my hands.

“Woot!” I yelled.

She looked at me with that “what a geek” expression.

“You know, like the website, Woot,” I explained.

“Oh, I got it,” she said, while sounding like she really wished she didn’t.

At this point I should have taken my butt back into my office and gone back to work. But no.

“Woot means ‘wow, loot’,” I said sheepishly.

She just stares at me as I leave the room in geeky shame.