Archive for November, 2005

new name

Tuesday, November 8th, 2005

Toby’s been calling me Daddy since he could talk, but in the last six months or so has also been calling me Dad from time to time (now about 1/5th of the time). Lately however he’s been copying his friend Hudson at church who calls his dad Papa, so I have a third name. I’m not sure I feel like a Papa, although it does make me feel quite northern European, and maybe like I should be smoking a pipe.

somewhere in this town

Tuesday, November 8th, 2005

I have been enormously enjoying the new Gorillaz CD, and thought I should find out a couple of things, like who is the narrator on Fire Coming Out Of The Monkey’s Head? Dennis Hopper, of course, as Amazon kindly told me. Amazon also has a list of the band’s favorite albums. I noticed that Murdoc’s pick is Jailbreak by Thin Lizzy, featuring the great line “tonight there’s going to be a jailbreak, somewhere in this town”. Um, would that be at the jail, perhaps?

a good boy

Monday, November 7th, 2005

Toby was great today. Emma took him for a flu shot mid-afternoon and she said that he was incredibly well behaved, and didn’t cry when the nurse gave him the injection. He was very proud of his Scooby Doo plaster and phoned me when he got home to tell me about it.

He was singing “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” (it’s worth following that link for the history of the famous song) while we were getting supper ready.

At supper he didn’t really want to eat what Emma had made – steak and potato casserole – and ended up eating about a half pound of broccoli instead. Then he ate a gigantic piece of bread. We were going to tell him to eat his casserole but had a “what are we doing?” moment when we realized he was eating his greens along with the wholegrain organic bread.

And to top it all off he and I had a great time playing with his trains, and I got him to sleep before 9pm – almost unheard of these days.

UPDATE: well it wasn’t quite perfect. It turns out that he did in fact mar our evening by somehow persuading TiVo to stop recording Arrested Development with 11 minutes to go, so we didn’t see what happened with Mr F. Curses.

so much for my job

Monday, November 7th, 2005

My brother David, who works for MTV Europe, was at their awards show in Lisbon last week, chaperoning these extremely cool gentlemen. He says it’s hard work but it sounds a lot more fun than my office-bound existence.

new low

Friday, November 4th, 2005

It’s taken America about five years to realize how unpleasantly incompetent Bush is, but finally we may be waking up. From the Washington Post today: Bush’s Popularity Reaches New Low:

On almost every key measure of presidential character and performance, the survey found that Bush has never been less popular with the American people. Currently 39 percent approve of the job he is doing as president, while 60 percent disapprove of his performance in office — the highest level of disapproval ever recorded for Bush in Post-ABC polls.

Do you remember when he said he would “restore integrity to the White House”? Not get involved in nation building? Be a “uniter not a divider”? Be “a “reformer with results”? It’s all working out pretty well, don’t you think?

make some space

Friday, November 4th, 2005

This weekend I really want to get out and do something – not just go to the grocery store or the zoo, but hopefully go to a state park and have a stomp around in the fresh air. We’ll see how that works out.

Another thing which will probably make us feel better is to throw some stuff out. When I moved to the US six and a half years ago all I had was a backpack and a suitcase full of clothes, CDs and photos, and now I have a three storey house full of stuff, much of which I never look at. So this might be a great time to throw some stuff out to clear the house and clear my mind.

been busy

Thursday, November 3rd, 2005

So I haven’t blogged or replied to personal email much in the last few days. Basically I’ve just been really busy at work, and at home been playing with Toby or trying to get him to go to sleep which is kind of challenging at the moment. Here’s what I did at work on Monday:

Re-plan a great big project and update it Gantt chart

Review some design documents

Submit some expenses

Request a testing environment

Create two status reports

Attent two status meetings

Get on to a steering committee

Do a couple of things to keep the team’s morale up (it’s pretty good at the moment, but it’s good to be proactive)

So it was quite non-stop. And I didn’t get the chance to blog the fact that I saw some toenail clippings on the floor in the office restrooms. Eeeeeeuuuuuuuwwwwwwww.


Thursday, November 3rd, 2005

Here’s some data which was buried in the Washinton Post’s White House Briefing today

A new CBS News poll shows Bush’s approval rating dropping to a shockingly low 35 percent — with 51 percent of those polled saying they consider the leak case a matter of great importance to the nation.

Cheney’s favorable rating is down nine points this year to just 19 percent.

John Roberts reports on the CBS Evening News: ‘The plunging poll numbers is another dose of bad news for a White House mired in it. The only recent president lower at this point in their term was Richard Nixon.’

More results can be found here.

The poll shows the public considers this the most important political scandal since Watergate, surpassing Clinton-Lewinsky, Whitewater and even Iran-Contra.

It also shows that only 32 percent of Americans think that before the war, the Bush administration was telling all or most of what they knew about weapons in Iraq, compared to 38 percent who feel they were hiding important elements and 26 percent who think they were ‘mostly lying.’

grumpy boy

Tuesday, November 1st, 2005

Toby’s been really grumpy the last couple of days, which is not like him. I think he’s maybe not been sleeping so well – he’s been having some very vivid dreams which cause him to shout that someone’s taking his ice cream, for example. So yesterday Hallowe’en came and went without much impact on our house. We were going to take him trick or treating as we did last year (then he had a tiger costume; this year it was Buzz Lightyear) but he just didn’t want to and we didn’t want to push him, so we ended up hanging out upstairs in the office where he and I played on the computer for ages. Upshot is that we have tons of leftover candy we had bought for the neighborhood tykes which now is on my desk at work. Further grumpiness – this morning I was going to walk/stroller him to school which usually he really enjoys but he totally refused.

Part of the deal might be that he’s started visiting the next class up at school. He was scheduled to start round about his third(!!!) birthday, Jan 25th, but they’re having him move sooner partly because we’re going to be away for three weeks and the school thought it would be better for him not to be moving at about that time, and also they say that he’s totally ready to go – his language, concentration and everything else are very good so they think we should do it. But I believe it’s leading to him being a bit over-excited, over-tired, unsettled and, most of all, grumpy.