Archive for the ‘personal’ Category


Monday, February 25th, 2008

I was just on the phone with American Express, to fix something with my corporate card, and as usual the service was almost spookily good. The representative was polite, formal and helpful and the issue I had was resolved in seconds. I’ve called them a few times now, including once from India when I was trying to buy some jewelery for Emma and the store I was at had problems with their credit card machine – in this instance the rep stayed on the line for over 15 minutes, speaking with me and the somewhat incompetent guy in the store, until we got it all worked out and Emma got her emeralds.

When I said thank you to the rep today she said, “It was my privilege.” Steady on, you were only transferring money, but still – impeccable service.


Thursday, February 21st, 2008

I saw the lunar eclipse last night, it was (in my scientific jargon) pretty cool. Actually (dad joke) it was freezing. I’d just left my class at St. Thomas at 9pm, and was waiting in downtown for the bus home, and it was about -2F. The sky was very clear, and I could see the moon looking kind of musty red. I’m pretty sure that if I was a superstitious type I would have been completely freaked out. Here’s a quick video. Now all I have to do is get the song “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by 80s soft rock belter Bonnie Tyler out of my head.

to the hills

Wednesday, February 20th, 2008

Run to the Hills by Iron Maiden just popped up on my iPod – classic and classy stuff. It always reminds me of when I was in a band when I was 17 or so – our singer was able to do a pretty decent Bruce Dickinson impression, so we did a few Maiden covers. Our drummer and bassist particularly enjoyed the over-the-topness of it all, and I’m sure we sounded about as ridiculous as the real thing.

the correct answer is yes

Tuesday, February 19th, 2008

Over the weekend I popped into our fantastic local co-op to get some supplies, and noticed that they had a great special on cheese – some French Brie, Le Chatelaine, for only 5 bucks a pound, down from 15ish. I noticed right away that it looked delicious and runny, and even through the wrapping it smelled good (by good I mean that if an apple smelled that way you would throw it away immediately, but perfect for a cheese).

After a day of storing it in the fridge I noticed that more containment would be needed, so it’s now in its wrapping, and a ziploc bag, and a box, which is meaning that the fridge is now 90% less stinky than before. I tried some last night – making sure to be in a different room from where Emma was, so as to be considerate of her more delicate constitution – and it was an incredible experience. Stinky, creamy, yummy.

The info on the wrapper says that it’s a great combination of creaminess, with tones of mushroom and yeast: I say that coagulated milk with fungus and mold thrown in makes a snack fit for kings.

And here’s a guy tip: In order to retain your manly credentials, when your wife asks you “Is that something really old and rancid in the fridge, or is it your cheese?” the correct answer can only be “Yes”.


Monday, February 18th, 2008

I ended up working from home most of Friday – Dara was not well at school in the morning (mostly diaper-related) so we took her home and I kept her company while she got back to her regular self. On Saturday Emma was laid low by whatever it was – largely digestion-related – and she was in bed pretty much all day. Sunday she was better, but it hit me so I was not on top form. Went to bed about 4pm, which is where I stayed till this morning. I made it to work but certainly not 100%, although sometimes I find that a good thing when I have a lot of basic admin stuff to do.

don’t be stupid

Friday, February 1st, 2008

The eagle-eyed among you (at least among those who don’t use an RSS reader to view my posts) will see that I have officially added an Obama 08 graphic to the page. I’ve been doing a lot of reading and thinking and listening and viewing, and (although I can’t vote) have decided it’s time to officially endorse Barack Obama for President. Aside from the emotion that I experience when I hear him speak, or even think about what America would look like if he was President, there is the basic argument – let’s just not be stupid.

Obama is going to be in Minneapolis on Saturday afternoon – unfortunately I can’t go, but for pretty much the most fun reason possible: it’s the party for Toby’s fifth birthday! Hooray!

something to look forward to

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

Fantastic news: depression is most likely in your 40s. I can’t wait. My take on why this would be so: when I was a teenager I could eat pretty much whatever I wanted with apparently no consequences. Now I need to be careful about everything I eat if I don’t want to balloon (yes I know, everyone should have such problems). I guess it’s time to book time with a psychiatrist and a personal trainer.

efficient meeting

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2008

At a meeting this afternoon, 4 people (including me) and my boss. This transcript verbatim:

Person 1: So there’s the 100k
Boss: Did you put that on the report?
Person 2: And that also affects the…
Me: Yes, I was going to talk about that
Boss: We should, right
Me: It’s on my status
Boss: OK, perfect
Person 4: Wow, you just took care of something without even saying what it was.

a bit nippy

Friday, January 18th, 2008

The weather this weekend is going to be bracing – a high on Saturday of 0F, which is about -16C. That’s the high. I was out on the street at lunchtime – it totally takes your breath away. At least it’s sunny…

To add insult, Emma’s mother wrote from Bermuda to say “It is a bit nippy here today. I have my cardigan on indoors.” It’s currently 68F – a seriously nippy 20C. Brrrrrr.


Thursday, January 17th, 2008

Now that Emma and I have two lovely kids we are not particularly planning to have more, certainly unless someone can tell us how it will be possible for us all to get ready for work/school/daycare in the morning without our collective blood pressure causing our entire bodies to explode.

Having said that, I am perhaps rather selfishly not planning to do anything surgical or permanent to avoid having more kids. Partly because I’m a big coward, and partly because I just read this.

(By the way, sorry if this is too much information, but it was a good excuse to link to a very well written article).