Archive for January, 2008

uninvited guest

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

This picture was taken by someone at work this morning – it seems that the outside of a 26th floor conference room is a handy breakfast spot (even though it must have been totally freezing – it was -4F at that time at street level).

From the message I was sent: “The following picture was taken today (1/11) looking out the window of conference room 2661. He left when we walked into the room and took the bird with him. The feathers and, umm, “marks” on the window remained.”

Click on the picture for a closer view:

Uninvited guest

this explains a lot

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

If you’ve been watching the celeb flameout news lately, this high security transcript may explain what’s going on and answer a number of questions.

we go hd

Monday, January 14th, 2008

Last weekend we finally got a new TV – a Sony 32″ LCD which so far is working out very nicely. Being a flatscreen model it takes up way less space than our old TV and of course the picture is considerably clearer.

We also changed from a regular TiVo to one of the new high def models. I felt bad disconnecting the old TiVo box as it has served us so well through the years but having HD and dual tuner capability in the new box was too good to resist. Tomorrow evening the cable guy is coming over to install the digital cable cards so that we can have the full HD experience.

toby pictures

Friday, January 11th, 2008

The boy is almost 5, so it’s time to get his birthday party all sorted. You might remember that last year he had a joint party with his friend Patrick, and my brother Richard made a really cool party invitation.

This year we’re planning the same kind of thing, and Richard just put together this year’s invitation. Also: special bonus picture of Toby and the kids in his class (click on each picture to embiggen).

Toby’s 5th birthday invitation

Toby and the preschool II class

election brain dump

Friday, January 11th, 2008

I like this post from the Whatever blog, which features musings on the early stages of the presidential nominating process. One of my favorite quotes about the Democrats: “…having a President Obama would make it feel like the American people were doing a Ctrl+Alt+Delete on the previous eight years…” I hope that by now people outside of the US are realizing how exhausted and despondent this country is. I saw something a couple of days ago which said how enlightened the American people are that they would even consider voting for someone named Obama, and that Brits, for example, would be very unlikely to vote for someone named Hitner.

And about the Republican candidates: “…the GOP field? Monkeys. Or more accurately: Jesus Monkey, 9/11 Monkey, flip-flop Monkey with perfect hair, Monkey who wins teh Internets and fails everything else, and John McCain, who is not a monkey.”

octopus news

Friday, January 11th, 2008

What a fun story – Louis the giant octopus makes friends with Mr Potato Head. When I was studying biology the lecturers told us that giant octopuses are as intelligent as your average dog; this guy certainly seems smart.


Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

OK so if you just read my last post and followed the link to the new Toby/Dara pics you’ve probably had quite a bit of cute. But I just saw that Minnesota’s Como Zoo have announced that a baby orangutan was born a few weeks ago. Here’s the story from the local paper. They usually remove the links after four weeks or so, so here’s a photo to give you more of the cute:Baby orangutan

pictures from christmas

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

Just doing some geekery – trying to get the PC upstairs to work (Windows keeps freezing and I have no idea why – at the moment it’s almost completely unusable, and even re-installing doesn’t seem to be working); upgrading WordPress for this blog to keep it clean and fresh; and posting up pics of Toby and Dara. Here are the pictures – enjoy!


Friday, January 4th, 2008

There’s been loads written today about Barack Obama’s win in the Iowa caucuses yesterday. People thinking it’s a real change, even though there’s a long way to go in the presidential primaries. Emma and I watched the results last night on TV, and although she prefers Hillary Clinton, I think she was reasonably impressed with Obama’s speech. Personally it made the hairs on my neck stand up – I found it exciting, visionary and moving and made me remember why I wanted to come to America in the first place (the last 7 years, politically, have been something of a nightmare).
Here are the things I liked:

Obama was on stage behind a podium, rather than crammed on a stage with all his elderly cronies around him. Clinton had tired, sad looking staffers – Obama held his head high, smiled a couple of times, but mostly was firm, clear and passionate.

Also you could see a lot of the crowd behind him was young and very enthusiastic. Edwards had union types (a guy was holding a “Carpenters for Edwards” sign which seemed kind of old school – we were wondering if it was a Christian thing, or union workers, or the band) and didn’t even acknowledge or mention Obama.

Edwards spoke of fighting; Clinton spoke in passing of Republicans; Obama spoke again and again about unity (although there was a firm ding against special interest lobbyists), and apparently many Republicans and Independents are fired up about his candidacy – they don’t necessarily agree with him all the time but he’s someone they could be proud of and believe in. Interesting times, in a good way for once.

lunch with mrs m

Thursday, January 3rd, 2008

Now that Emma’s rolling with her new job and is working in downtown we decided that we should go for lunch at least once a month so that we have time to see each other. Today we did that for the first time, and it was really fun – quite a novelty to have time to hang out in the middle of the day and pretend to be grown-ups in our smart work clothes.