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Showing posts from December, 2007

And I'll have a Wii Christmas

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Well, a week later, here we are. I've gotten and gotten-over a nasty stomach bug, so I managed to miss most of Wednesday through Friday.

In my absence, the Wii has replaced the iMac as the coolest thing in the household. Yes, it's that good.



Just to give you an idea, we had Stu and Cathy using it within 4 minutes of watching us play it. We've played it for at least 5 hours a day since we got it.

So far, the most popular game is the one that comes with the system, called Wii Sports, where you can play any of Tennis, Baseball, Bowling, Golf, or Boxing. We've really gotten into playing versus with two controllers, and it gets intense! Family game night may be very exciting from now on!

Christmas: Leg 1 COMPLETE

We returned from our 2 day roundtrip to balmy (!) Columbus, Ohio this evening, Joey running a 101.5 fever and Maria dozing contentedly.

Pretty uneventful trip--ate too much, slept too much, saw Whitney's Uncle Richard's old...ahem...Ferrari.

Yep, honest-to-goodness Ferrari GT, Brown....V-12 & everything. Not a good looking car, particularly, but DUDE!

So, we're opening presents tomorrow morning and doing stuff around the house, then going down to my Mom's for Christmas Eve. We have to turn Joey over to his dad at 7am Christmas Day.

Hopefully, by tomorrow afternoon, I'll have a full report on what playing a Wii is like!!!

"Flyboys"

2 hours and 20 minutes of THAT?!!!

This is a pretty-standard war/buddy flick. Some guys wanna go fly, they go through some training, meet an old salt who tells them they're stupid, and get a rude awakening when they first meet the enemy. They ALL have backstories, and they're all (poorly) developed. One resembles Porkins from Star Wars and dies similarly. There's a love interest thrown-in and many long, conceited scenes flying about in a CGI wonderland resembling a decent WWI Video Game.

And then they blow up a Zeppelin. Didn't see that coming, did you?

Had the director kept a tighter rein on his material, this could've been a run-of-the-mill war flick with good SFX. As is, it's overblown dreck. UGH!

Stay far, far away.

The weekend...

It was a blessedly content, stresss-free and safe weekend. The SNOW ADVISORY WEATHER EVENT turned out to be all hype (could it have been anything else?), with only a few flakes in Georgetown.

On Saturday, we picked-up Mom to go to my cousin's baby shower; Bryan and Dixie are expecting their first child on February 6th. I keep admonishing them to wait 'til the 10th just for easy scheduling.

Mom is remarkable. But, of course, you knew that if you read this blog with any regularity. She estimated herself 80% recovered from the surgery, and blessedly pain-free on her right side. Shoulder pain? Gone. Back pain? Gone. She's delighted her doctors throughout with her progress.

She is starting simultaneous oral chemotherapy and targeted radiation this week, so keep those praryers coming, Prayer Warriors.

By some incredible fluke, despite scoring a measly 85 points, my team looks like it's in the finals of our fantasy football league. Going into tonight's game, it als…

Golden Compass: Crash'n'Burn

E! Article


New Line, meanwhile, was the woozy-feeling patient after its would-be franchise starter The Golden Compass (third place, $9 million) fell off a cliff, down 65 percent from a disappointing debut weekend.

So far, the $180 million fantasy film is the unwanted fruitcake of the holiday season, having taken in just $41 million overall. (It has performed stronger overseas; so, perhaps any sequels could be made expressly for Slovakia, et al.)


* * *

Seeking to understand the hype on this thing, but yet not support it commercially, Whitney and I grabbed a book-on-tape version of Pullman's The Amber Spyglass. This is the third book in the series.

Essentially, the book's a protracted treatise on reconciling religion, quantum theory, and why we whacky humans believe in the Almighty ("The Authority" in Pullman-speak). Unlike most Atheists, Pullman not only accepts the supernatural; he embraces it. He simply melds what we would call "The Supernatural" with Arthur…

Little Miss Sunshine

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Yes, it's that good.




Just finished watching the Odyssey-in-a-Microbus, Little Miss Sunshine. It's the type of movie my wife hates, but which I love, where all the characters are shades of gray. They're intensely real, and flawed, and they love and hate one another. Yet they're bound together by bonds that bring them together when it counts--death, adversity, and the bald insanity of life.

Steve Carell is a revelation as Frank Hoover, the frustrated homosexual academic who we meet in a hospital fresh off his failed suicide attempt. Out of work, without insurance, he's kicked out of the pysch ward to the care of his overwrought sister, Sheryl. We meet her blended family next: Her husband Richard the self-help guru, the vow-of-silence goth teen Dwayne, the heroin-snorting profane Grandpa, and the little ingenue Olive.

The plot is almost "National Lampoon" worthy: After getting Frank home and settling him into his Albuquerque imprisonment with Dwayne ("…

Mom -- looking up :-)

Happily, Mom didn't have chemo on Friday.

Her oncologist looked at the results of her PET scan and said the surgeon was full of it.

She doesn't have ASC, she has CCC, Cholangiocarcinoma, a cancer of the bile duct that is fairly rare (1-2 cases / 100,000 ppl), but which is curable through surgery. Mom had surgery, and there's no evidence the cancer had spread through her lymphatic system.

The short answer: Prognosis is much better than with ASC. Surgical resection allows for a cure, and follow-up radiation shows good results. Mom's scheduled intensive, local radiation 5 days a week for the next 5 weeks, and an oral chemotherapy tablet after that. Her hair probably won't fall out.

I feel, well, amazed. Mom has a fighting chance.

Keep it up, prayer warriors!

CompUseless is closing

CompUSA to close all its stores

Meh. I'll just have to go to Louisville to lust after Macs, I guess.

Ah, that time of year again...snow, mistletoe, Kirby salesmen

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Yesterday was pretty tough--I was up at 4:30, at work by 6, and home by 2:45 to watch the kids (4 kids now--our two and two from Whitney's BFF Sarah). While firehosing me with all the TODOs (change this, change that, sippy cup, etc.), Whitney mentioned, "Oh, and a guy from Kirby should be here from 3 to 5 to clean the carpets and shampoo the carpets for free."



:-) I was not too thrilled with this, as I'd been here before. Twenty-three years ago...a guy showed up at Hacienda Combs and sold Mom & Dad a Kirby Heritage II vacuum. Thing was solid steel, essentially unbreakable. It was also $1200 give-or-take. (According to The CPI calculator, that's $2400 in today's money, folks!)

Anyway, the guy shows up, and does the song-and dance with this new Kirby that's self-powered, but (to me) made of the cheapest plastic they could find. And the guy's sales technique...ugh.

"Please buy one."

"Woncha just buy one so I can go home?"

Yeah,…

Mom Update -- chemo starting tomorrow

Thanks everyone for your thoughts and prayers as I've shared about Mom's sickness. I've not posted more, out of deference to her, and simply because we didn't know much.

Mom had surgery on Halloween, but didn't get any follow-up on pathology results until 2 weeks later, November 16th. That day, we went into the Transplant Clinic at UK Hospital (!) to get some results. I won't go into it fully here, but it's a rare hybrid of two cancers of the liver itself. They said to set-up an appointment with Oncologists as soon as she felt better.

So, Mom went in last Friday and had her first appointment with the Markey Cancer Center Oncologists. He and his team of nurses and nurse-practitioners really raised her spirits. They've got her on a plan of IV and oral chemotherapy to attack any remnants of the cancer they resected on Halloween. I think it's an 8-week round of therapy overall.

Throughout her life, Mom has been a survivor. When her mom died, she survive…

Heresy...Firefox has jumped the shark?

I've been with Firefox ( originally Phoenix, then Firebird, forked to IceWeasel) for years now. Yes, it was the chip off the old block (Son of Mozilla, rise!), and it was build upon Good Code©, and it bore no hint of That evil corporation that won the browser war by not playing fair

It was the best parts of mozilla, with none of the bloat of the suite (that email program that no one used)

Great. Except now, Firefox (both 2.0.1839 and 3.0B1) LEAK MEMORY LIKE A FRICKIN' SIEVE. On no planet should I have 4 tabs open and have a resident size of firefox of 256MB. I currently have google reader, blogger, netflix, and Microsoft.com open in IE and it's using 94MB. Granted, that's insane enough, but it's 200MB less than Firefox.

Firefox 1.5 wasn't like this--you could leave it up for days with dozens of tabs, no problem. Both 2.0 and Beta 1 of 3.0 are just unstable.

Makes me sad, but I'm considering using IE. IE 7 is fast, tightly integrated with Windows, and doe…