December 31, 2003
Michael whacked me in the face with a Lego contraption today. Pretty damn hard, actually. When I asked him to say "sorry", he said, "I don't want to say 'sorry'. How about 'give up!'?"
I think I'm ready to surrender.
December 25, 2003
Why does a search for "Tony Chor" (not that I'm vain) on Google put Duffer Geek higher than tonychor.com? What's up with that?
I'm going to have to start a concerted campaign to get links to my site so this site goes up in the rankings. Dammit.
Hope you all had a great Christmas. Lots of loot, grandparents doting on kids, and tons of yummy food lead to a very relaxing Christmas at the Chor home.
Helped Mom buy a new cellphone today. Amazon and AT&T will give you a Motorola V60i MK2 (the hot phone from about two years ago) with $200 cash -- they give you $200. Of course, you need to sign up for two years of service... Still, crazy economics.
December 22, 2003
Michael's mind works in miraculous ways. On the eve of the eve of the eve of Christmas, we were talking about Jesus and how he's the "Son" in the "Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit."
Michael says, "I get it. The sun is made of cheese. That's why Cheesus is the sun."
Wow. I would never have come up with that.
Andrew, on the other hand, wants me to explain what the Holy Spirit is and how the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are all part of the same God. Back to Catholicism for Dummies.
I love Christmas music. I really do. So, we were listening to Christmas songs on the radio the other day. As usual, My Favorite Things from The Sound of Music came on.
It strikes me as very odd that this has become a Christmas song. What is Christmasy about it? I'm not sure why a song from a show about a family running from Nazis has somehow become a Christmas song.
And why does Barbara Streisand sing Christmas songs? I like Jews. Some of my best friends are Jews. It just seems weird that a Jewish person has a Christmas album. Of course, that might explain the connection between The Sound of Music and Christmas. I guess everything comes back to the Nazis with the Jewish. Even Christmas songs. The great Jewish conspiracy hard at work again...
Ah, the holidays and the obligatory Christmas lights. There is only one word to describe the massive lighting displays in our neighborhood -- craptacular. This is yet another flash of brilliance from The Simpsons and describes the light polluting and electricity sucking inflatable snowman and flashing light hell perfectly.
I admit we've been sucked into the light-up-the-house thing, but I'd like to think our display is relatively tactful -- just a few white lights with no blinking, chasing.
Craptacular. What a great word.
December 15, 2003
Last weekend was the Microsoft Windows Holiday Party. Lots of drunken merriment was had by all. Incriminating photos can be found on my friend Vinny's website -- Pasceri.com.
More details to come.
December 14, 2003
GPS' are super cool. I've been carrying a Garmin eTrex for a while to put GPS coordinates into the photos I've taken. This is part of the WWMX Project from Microsoft Research. It's very slick.
One of the cool side effects of always carrying a GPS is that I can see where I've been. It's been neat to see my paths charted out. Now, people with too much time and money have started drawing pictures by moving along the streets of their town with a GPS. The resulting tracks make words 70 miles high, etc. Kind of neat. Check out http://www.gpsdrawing.com.
I should note that this entry and the food simulator entry come from today's New York Times Magazine. This issue has a fun article on the "Ideas of 2003". Other "winners" were things like the "Nicotini", "PowerPoint Makes You Dumb" (a view I have expressed for years...), and more crazy Japanese inventions like "Spray-On Stockings."
I love gadgets as much (probably more) than the next guy. I also love food. What to do when the two collide? Well, not this. This is the "Food Simulator." It's a horrible abomination that has a force-feedback sensor to approximate bite, a delivery tube that sends chemical flavors, and a speaker to emulate the sound.
We have enough fake food already. This is the horrible and unfortunately logical end to the increasing distance between people and our food. Yuck.
I ran across this cool snowflake maker on Make-a-Flake. Totally random, but nicely done and pretty fun. There are some very nice flakes in their gallery too. This is my first flake. Check it out and link to your cool flakes in the comments on this thread!
December 7, 2003
I had a disturbing preview of Michael as a crotchety old man today. After I woke him up from nap, we was very cross with me. Fearing for my life, I put him down at which point he slowly tottered down the hall away from me, mumbling to himself, "stupid Daddy, dumb, dumb, dumb, stupid, dumb, hate you, dumb, dumb, stupid..."
December 4, 2003
We lost power today due to high windstorms in the area. I'm using my last remaining laptop juice and am connecting through a pokey analog connection. It's amazing how isolated I feel (and cold -- no heat...) I'm so wired 99% of the time that being cut off is a little disorienting. Kind of pathetic really.
It's also amazing how quiet it is in the house without all the motors, fans, and high frequency buzz in the house. I don't normally even hear it except when it's not there. It may not be bad for you, but I'm sure it's not good.
Hopefully, we'll get power back shortly. It's been 8.5 hours already. I'm going through withdrawal and will lose my methadone fix once my laptop battery dies. Can I survive until the morning when I get back into work? We'll see.
Since we didn't have power this evening, I took the kids to Chuck E. Cheese for dinner and some fun. I also owed this to Andrew since got to page 100 in his workbook at school.
Anyway, if you haven't been before (or haven't been since you were a kid), Chuck E. Cheese is a pizza joint with games and big kid-sized-habitrail setups. They also have a scary, syrupy stage show of animatronic animals in a band and a full sized Chuck E. Cheese guy in costume that will likely result in nightmares for me and the boys this evening. I seem to recall it being a more regular arcade when I was growing up, but now it caters to young children (like lower elementary).
As you walk in, you have to get your hand stamped in special ink so they can verify you're leaving with the right kids (like I'd want to take more kids than I came with?!) This is a nice idea in principle and makes people feel OK to let their four year olds run around unattended while the Stepford wives chat amongst themselves. However, since we managed to leave tonight without being checked and Michelle has seen unstamped adults leaving with kids, it's clearly not as robust a a scheme as you'd think. I never let Michael out of arm's reach and scan for Andrew every thirty seconds.
The games are a mix of arcade games for little kids and midway style machines that return tickets depending on how well you do. If you get a few thousand tickets at a quarter a pop, you can cash them in for great prizes like Matchbox car knockoffs and bad candy. A bargain at twice the price.
Half the games are broken. The floor is dirty from a million 4-5 year olds running around in their socks and bare feet, spilling soda. The whole place makes me want to take a Lysol shower afterwards. I just get the willies being there.
Worst of all, my kids love the place. Just love it. They can't wait to go back. So, we'll go back.
December 2, 2003
My phone rang late this afternoon. I could tell from the caller ID it was Michelle. I pick it up.
M: "Baking soda on kitchen fires, right?"
Fortunately, there was only a minor oven fire with no damage. More important, the lamb chops turned out very well so no harm done.