Haiku Wednesday

Posted November 10, 2010 by ThePowerOf10
Categories: Random

In honor of some things I’ve been obsessed with/pondering recently, I decided to express my feelings for them in Haiku form.

House, M.D.

A brilliant doctor
He makes fun of everyone
Cuddy is a fox

Fantastic Contraption 2

For those who don’t know
It’s an engineering game
Check out the free trial

(http://www.sparkworkz.com/fc2/) … Seriously, it’s insanely fun and addictive.)

Green Tea

Hot and delicious
I take mine with two Splenda
Drink it everyday

Weather

Yesterday’s weather
Was the last nice day of fall
Now here comes the cold

Cam Newton

Big-mouthed quarterback
Won’t play ball without a bribe
Now in hot water

Minnesota Vikings

Still not very good
I bet they go eight and eight
Favre is a disease

The NFL’s New Contact Rules

Let them play the game
Way too many penalties
It’s like two-hand-touch

Blogging

Does this entry count
As my blog post for the week?
Judge rules: yes it does

One love,

10

Facebook: A Site Full Of TMI

Posted November 2, 2010 by ThePowerOf10
Categories: Uncategorized

Wow, has it been three weeks since I last posted?  That escalated quickly.  I mean, that really got out of hand fast.  It jumped up a notch.  I wish I had some fun and exciting reason for you as to why I’ve been overwhelmingly absent from basically the entire internet lately, but I don’t.

For those who didn’t catch it, my last entry was simply a picture of a bun in an oven.  As I expected, all of the comments I received were those of a congratulatory nature. Wifey and I are very excited.  I mean, it’s not often that two people can realize their dream of opening a bakery.

Okay, of course I’m kidding.  We are indeed on our way to becoming parents.  I wasn’t kidding, however, when I said that Wifey and I are very excited.  Baby is due in April, so we’ve got quite a bit of time left to go, but already it’s changed our lives in such wonderful ways.  But before I get too far into baby talk, I want to lay some ground rules.

I do solemnly swear to abide by the following rules regarding the blog and the baby:

I: I will not over-share about any baby-related information.
–That crap makes me gag.  Attention all expecting mothers: I don’t want to know that you don’t fit into your bra anymore, nor do I care that you have bad gas.  Keep it to yourself.

II. I will only share pertinent information regarding my Wife and our pregnancy.
–Basically, this means that I probably won’t mention much since the people who actually care are family, and I am mostly in the habit of talking to them in person about this kind of stuff.

III. I will not overwhelm my entries with baby-related talk.
–This kind of goes hand in hand with the second rule, but again, I know you don’t want to read about it, and therefore, you will be spared.  Sure, I’m super ecstatic about becoming a Dad this spring, but there are things you share, and there are things you keep within your circle of family and close friends.

IV.  Facebook will not serve as my medium to tell everyone I know about everything that is going on.
–Matter of fact, Wifey and I are choosing not to put the news on the ‘Book.  (At least for now, that is subject to change).  There are just way too many people on Facebook, and unlike here, I/we are identifiable.  Here, I am just another web address with words on a screen.  There are no pictures, no phone numbers, no email addresses, etc.  It’s just how we feel.

V. I would be more than happy to answer most baby-related questions if I am prompted to do so.
–Just remember that we are, for the most part, a fairly private couple.  However, if anyone were to request an update on how things are going, or anything like that, feel free to ask.

So, to preemptively answer a few of the more frequently asked questions … No, we don’t know the sex of the baby yet.  Yes, we do plan on finding out.  Yes, we will share that information when it becomes available.  No, we don’t care what sex the baby is.  Yes, we have names in mind for either sex.  No, we will not be sharing those names (until baby is born of course).  Yes, we have seen the baby on a monitor during a couple of  routine check-ups.  Yes, I got tears in my eyes when I saw him/her.

That should cover most of the basics.

Onto other things.  Of the aforementioned rules, number four strikes close to mine and Wifey’s hearts.  Facebook has gotten way out of control over the past couple of years in the sense that so many people are knowingly sacrificing their own privacy, just to tell everyone what they are thinking 24 hours a day.

To me, it’s annoying.  The way I see it, when it comes to Facebook, 95% of peoples’ status updates fall into one of four categories:

1) No one cares.
2) Too much information (TMI).
3) Annoying cut-and-paste chain statuses.
4) Desperate cries for attention.

The remaining 5% can actually be considered useful, harmless, and/or funny.  For the most part, though, it’s a giant crap fest.  For example, log into Facebook on any Friday.  I’ll bet you $100 that if you scroll through the recent updates, you will see at least five people exclaiming their love for Friday and/or the weekend. Look people, we get it.  Fridays are nice, and weekends are fun.  We don’t need to be reminded of it every seven days.

Same goes for Mondays.  I bet you could count a dozen updates from people complaining about how much they dislike Mondays.  Again, this is not news to anyone, and you have not discovered a new phenomenon.  We get it, you don’t like going back to work.

Due to the nature of Facebook’s status updates, most people are losing (or have lost) their ability to filter.  People are forgetting that there are some things that just don’t need to be said, and some things that other people don’t give a crap about.  I’ll give you an example.  This is an actual status from someone on my friend list.  I covered up the picture and the name to be polite to the actual person who wrote it.  Also, I’m sorry for the blurriness.  The bigger I made it, the harder it was to work with.  (That’s what she said).


For those unable to read it, it says: sigh… life changing decisions are tough… do i make enough money that i can pay off all my debt in a year or two have no life and be in a place that i hate… or do i go home move in with my best friend make good but not great money take my time paying off debt and having tons of friend time meeting new people and possibly finding someone that i can love again…

No.  One.  Cares. 

Seriously people.  Think before you post.  That post isn’t even the tip of the iceberg.  If we’re speaking metaphorically, that post is a single-celled organism contained in a fleck of dust, resting gently atop the tip of the iceberg.  And the iceberg is big enough to take down the Titanic without flinching.

One love,

10

 

And Now, A ‘Read Between The Lines’ Public Announcement From Wifey And I

Posted October 7, 2010 by ThePowerOf10
Categories: Life

Fun With Bullets

Posted October 4, 2010 by ThePowerOf10
Categories: Life, Sports

-Seven games.  That’s it.  All the Twins have to do is win seven games and they’re in the World Series for the first time since 1991.  But, of course, as fate would have it, the first three of those seven wins need to come against the Yankees, or as I like to call them, the Anti-Twins.  Not only are they the polar opposite of everything the Twins are, (big market, insanely high budget, completely unlikeable outside of their tri-state area), but they seem to be the team we always run into problems with.  It’s like running into some kind of giant brick road block every time we play them, and it makes me nervous that we have to play them in the first round of the playoffs.  Again.  It seems as though we can’t escape them. All I can say is that if Jeter fakes getting hit by a pitch again like he did a few weeks ago, I’m going to go down there and give him something to cry about.

We know it hit the bat, jackass.

-Phil Mickelson was especially disappointing this weekend in the Ryder Cup.  The U.S. lost 14½ to 13½ in Wales, and Phil won only one of his four matches.  He now has lost 17 matches in Ryder Cup history, which is the most of any U.S. player ever.  I’m not saying he doesn’t deserve to be there, but I don’t think the style and format of the Ryder Cup match up well with Phil’s skill set.  Would it break my heart if he wasn’t on the team in two years?  Nope.

-The weather lately has been impeccable.  I mean, really choice stuff.  Mid 60’s to low 70’s and sunny with a side of cool autumn breeze?  Yes, please.  The fact that it’s been gorgeous for the past two weeks only means that we’re roughly 10 days away from getting completely donkey punched with cold and rain.  In Minnesota, we are only ever set up like this to be promptly knocked down.

-As much as I complain about not liking Facebook, I came across this link recently, and I’m not going to lie … I laughed out loud.

-Speaking of douchey social media websites, Twitter co-founder and CEO Evan Williams resigned today.  To comment on this news, I am going to channel my inner Seth Meyers and bring this story to you as if I were on SNL Weekend Update.  Here goes … Although he noted that he was proud of the site’s progress over the past two years, Williams seemed disappointed that it has yet to be turned into a profitable endeavor.  Prior to his resignation, Williams tweeted two final times:

@EvanWilliams

What does Facebook have that we don’t?  We have 160 million registered users, how can we NOT make money? Plus, only using 140 characters is
-8:14 AM October 4th via Twitter for iPhone

Screw this, I quit.
-8:16 AM October 4th via Twitter for iPhone

One love,

10

Book ‘Em

Posted September 21, 2010 by ThePowerOf10
Categories: Life

Something has happened to me recently.  I started reading again.  Equally shocking, I started liking reading again.  It’s been a long, long time since I’ve enjoyed myself some quality time with a book, but it would appear that my disdain for reading (which likely arose due to the gross overexposure to a listless amount of yawn-inducing snoozers I endured in college) has lifted.

Apparently, the non-stop assault of abhorrently thick novels, biographies, and information-laden books which I was dealt in all of those history classes led to what I considered to be a bit of an aversion to reading.   Forcing yourself through a stack of History and Social Science-related books large enough to choke a Filipino donkey will do that to you.  Seriously, I may as well have been given an elephant tranquilizer instead of reading some of the crap I had to force upon myself.  Thankfully, all it took was time for me to get back on the proverbial horse. (This is me, fully aware that there are way too many wild animal references happening right now).

Over the past couple of months, I’ve read a few books, but nothing super fantastic.  I read a couple of books about pool (billiards is a hobby of mine) and a book about Zen, which I found quite interesting.  Currently, I’m completely hooked on “Eat, Pray, Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert.  Don’t laugh and call me a sissy, she’s a fantastic writer.  Plus, I’m comfortable enough with my own sexuality to read a book that some might consider to be a bit on the feminine side.  Regardless, I estimate I’ll be done with this book in a week or two if I keep my current pace (which is slow, but it’s all my schedule allows currently).  Then, I’ll be looking for more.

That’s where you all come in.  I’ve been trolling through Amazon recently and found a handful of books that I estimate would keep me busy for a while.  However, I stumbled on these books mostly by pure happenstance, and I am only assuming they’re worth it.  With that said, I figured I’d open up my ears to those of you who weren’t on a two year hiatus from any and all reading materials to ask the age old question …

Read any good books lately?

Before you hit me with your recommendations, I’d like to set a few ground rules, if I may.

1) No politics.  I don’t know politics, I don’t follow politics, and I don’t care about them.  Call me irresponsible for being 27 and taking no interest in politics, but I don’t care.  The realm of politics bores me, and everything is completely subjective within it.

2) No biographies (unless the person has been one hell of a human being).

3) I’m open to both fiction and nonfiction, just nothing TOO far out there.

4) If you even mumble the word Twilight, I will hurt you. The same goes for all other Tween crap.  No Harry Potter either, I’ve seen all the movies, and that’s good enough for me.  Speaking of which …

5) Tread carefully with books that were made into movies.  If I’ve seen the movie, my interest level for the corresponding book will plummet only due to the fact that I already know the ending.

Other than that, I’m open to just about anything.  The wish list I compiled on Amazon.com is a pretty random collection of works.  From “The Inner Game of Tennis,” which is all about the mental side of sports, to “The Divine Comedy,” a 900 page Italian masterpiece about Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory that was originally written in the 1300s.

To go along with all this new found pleasure reading I’m getting into, if anyone is looking for a slam dunk of a present for me this Christmas, you can find it in the form of a Kindle.  And when I say “Kindle” I do not mean “iPad.”  The Kindle is a fourth of the price, half the size, and does everything I’m looking for (download and display books, magazines, and newspapers).  If I had an iPad, I’d never bring it out of the house.  It’s too bulky to be portable in my humble opinion.  And since I’d never bring it out of the house, and I have a computer in the house, it stands to reason that I would have spent $500 on a paperweight.

Plus, Amazon nailed it with their most recent commercial:

At the very least, the girl repping the Kindle is way better looking than the people Apple has representing their products in all of their commercials.

One love,

10

27 Is The New Bitter

Posted September 15, 2010 by ThePowerOf10
Categories: Life, Sports

A couple of months ago, I turned 27.  To anyone younger than me, I am getting old.  To those older than me, I’m not even close to old.  I’ve always subscribed to the adage that you’re only as old as you feel.  I don’t feel like I’m getting old, however I am starting to notice a change in my thought process towards a few things.

As I approach 30, I am becoming very aware that some of the things I used to be exposed to, and hell, some things I used to participate in, are now the bane of my existence.  I’ll try to elaborate.

When I was in college, I found teenagers to be just plain annoying.  In a few different ways, I’d look at someone in high school and think, “Man, I hope I wasn’t a giant douche like that when I was in high school.” Chances are, I was.  But once I entered my 20s, I found that typical teenage behavior bothered me to no end.

Now that I’m removed from college, it’s no longer just the teens that annoy me, it’s college students too.  That’s when I knew I was getting old.  I find myself annoyed with people in their early 20s, and what’s more, I find myself acting like a pseudo-parent to teens (in my own head, not in an outward fashion).  For example, if I encounter a group of teens, and it’s a bunch of boys with their pants falling off their asses, their Hollister shirts two sizes too small, and their Hurley hats perched sideways atop their overgrown mess of a mop they call hair, I’m instantly annoyed.  In my head I’m saying, “Get a haircut, pull your pants up, put your hat on like it’s supposed to be worn, and wear clothes that fit.”

If it were a group of girls, chances are they’d all be wearing shorts that barely cover their ass cheeks, shirts that are way too low cut, and way too much makeup.  And meanwhile, all I can think is that I want to call their parents and ask if they know how their daughters are dressed in public (even though, ten years ago, that same scene would have caused me to follow them for an hour and shamelessly hit on them).  My how time changes things.

And I chalk it up to the fact that I am getting older.  Yet another example: If you offered me $100 per hour to listen to the top 40 station on the radio, I don’t think I could do it.  I cannot stand anything they play.  If I’m running through the dial, and I come across one of those stations, it seriously just sounds like noise to me.  Now I know how my Dad felt when he heard me listening to Ice Cube all those years.  I can’t turn it fast enough. I think I’d rather listen to a recording of a person swinging a bag full of cats against a brick wall for two hours.

Facebook is another one.  I have been a Facebook user since 2005, so I’ve been around long enough to remember the old school Facebook.  Now, I’ll admit that it is an excellent way to keep in touch with people, and communicate with others, but for me, it has lost 99% of its appeal.

I really attribute most of that to the fact that it became a zoo.  When it started, Facebook was only for people with a valid college e-mail address.  There were no games, there were no applications, no events, no causes.  Now I can’t even log in without having a half dozen invites to stupid events, requests to “Like” stuff that I don’t even like, and people wanting me to join groups for asinine causes.

Here’s the deal, folks.  I don’t want to join your group, I don’t want to water your fake flowers or feed your fake animals, I don’t want to “Like” what you “Like,” and if you have to invite me on Facebook, I am not coming to your event.  I don’t want to be a zombie, I don’t want to be in the mob, I don’t want to be a pirate, I don’t want to be  a farmer (let alone a super farmer).  You get the point.  Like I said, Facebook can be a wonderful tool for staying in touch with family and friends, and it can serve as a valuable resource for getting in touch with people you couldn’t otherwise find.  However, it’s just not doing it for me anymore.  I think the only reason I haven’t deleted my account is because that requires more work than just leaving it and letting the invites and friend requests pile up.

Another thing I have found that I can’t stand: fantasy sports.  This one has nothing to do with age, but I figure since I’m pissing and moaning about everything else, why not throw it in?  Since I know fantasy sports have a huge following, and no less than half of you reading this probably partake in them, allow me to explain my reasons.  Remember, this is only my opinion.

To me, fantasy sports are, among other things:

1) Incredibly boring and pointless.  It’s a group of men ranging in age from teenager to middle-aged who spend countless hours on the computer looking up stats, reading injury reports, revising their rosters, and subsequently sucking all the fun out of sports. Gosh, forgive me for not sprinting to the front of the line one that one.  People get so wrapped up in it, that they forget that sports are supposed to be for entertainment.  If you can’t enjoy watching sports without playing fantasy sports, you’re not a real fan, and that is the dead truth.  I, for example, don’t give two craps about any baseball team other than the Twins.  I don’t care how many times Paul Konerko has struck out with runners in scoring position.  I don’t care what Trevor Hoffman’s ERA is with the bases loaded.  I don’t want to know.  All I want to do is watch my team.  Everything else is completely inconsequential to me.

2)All based entirely on luck.  Seriously, you can say you’re the best fantasy football “player” in the world,  but if a handful of your players get hurt, or they are in a slump, or they are suspended six games for allegedly raping a girl in Tahoe, then you’re toast.  You could draft the freaking all-star team for your roster, but you have NO control over how they’ll play.  You’re just picking people and hoping. Conversely, you could throw darts at team pictures from across the room to choose your players and wind up winning it all.  There’s no skill involved.  It’s all based entirely on what other people do, and over that, you have no control as a fantasy player.

3) Just another way for us as Americans to turn everything into a competition.  Reality check:  sports are already competitions.  Now you want to compete over who can blindly predict a group of players who will have productive weeks and seasons?   If you want to try and predict sports outcomes, call your bookie and lay down some cash the old fashioned way.  Don’t pussyfoot around with this fantasy crap, gamble like a real man would.

4) There is nothing more annoying/boring than those people who talk non-stop about their fantasy team (as if I could even pretend to care).  “Well, I was thinking about benching Wes Welker for the week, but then I heard that TJ Houshmandzadeh’s dog had a sinus infection so I didn’t think he would be very effective.  Bottom line, all I need is for Matt Ryan to throw a couple of TD’s and for Stephen Jackson not to rush for more than 127 yards and/or two touchdowns and I’ll win by 0.114 points.” Seriously, please go swallow a knife, I hate you.  No one else cares either.  Not even people who play fantasy sports.  No one wants to hear about anyone’s team but their own, which is even more reason that fantasy sports are the devil.  Furthermore, the next time I hear someone complain that they have to root against their favorite team in order for their fantasy team to win that week, I might choke someone.  Another reality check:  Which is more important to you – your actual favorite team winning, or your pretend fantasy team (which isn’t even really a team outside of your mind) winning?  If you said your fantasy team, then you are not a fan of that actual team.

There, I feel better.

However, there’s a plus to being 27.  I found out that if there were a military draft, I am no longer eligible to be drafted.  So I have that going for me, which is nice.

One love,

1o

Say Uncle, Say Uncle!

Posted September 9, 2010 by ThePowerOf10
Categories: Life

While I was away on my blog-less hiatus, something completely awesome happened.  I became an Uncle.  Wifey’s sister and her husband had their first child a couple of months ago, and luckily for Wifey and I, we were there visiting them when baby came.  That being said, it was then that I had my first real interactions with a baby.

I mean sure, I’ve “seen” babies, and I’ve “been exposed” to babies, and I am “aware of their existence” and all, but I’ve never been around a baby for an extended period of time.  I’m the oldest of two siblings, and no one in my immediate family has had a baby in a good 13-14 years, so this all came very new to me.  I’ll say this: it’s a funny feeling when you’re holding another human in your arms and simultaneously wondering how long it will be before they pee/poop/vomit on you.  Not that I would have cared, because that’s what Uncles are for.  But one thing kept running through my mind over and over again …  “There is a very real chance that this person will poop on me while I hold her.” It’s a precarious thought to have.

After baby was born, I was only able to stay around for a couple of days before I had to come home and go back to work, but Wifey’s sister and her husband recently came to visit for a couple of weeks, and as fate would have it, they brought the baby with them.  Turns out they didn’t feel comfortable leaving her 2,000 miles away by herself for two weeks.  They called it “good parenting” I guess.

Anyway, since baby was here for two solid weeks, I encountered a lot of firsts.  Prior to their visit, I had never really held a baby for longer than a few minutes.  After I did, I had a new respect for parents.

Everyone always says, “Hold a baby like you would hold a football.”  Bullsh*t.  It’s nothing like that.  Footballs don’t move or fart, or need their neck and head supported constantly.  Footballs require slightly less attention than a 9 week old child who is trying to kick her way out of your grasp while simultaneously sticking her fingers up your nose and crying because you dropped her pacifier.  And besides, if holding a child was like holding a football, Adrian Peterson would NOT be allowed to have a child of his own, (which he does).

Before feeding my niece, I had never fed a baby before either.  There’s a subtle art to it.  As there is to burping.  Both have a lot of ins and outs, but the burping department was where I fell well short of my goal.  I imagined it would be easy, but when I was chartered to burp the baby after lunch, I held her gently, and softly patted her back.  And nothing came out.

It was like I was afraid I was going to break her.  I honestly acted like I was trying to burp a $2 million crystal vase.  Wifey watched as I droned on with my pitiful attempts at burping the baby, until finally grabbing her from me.  As she held her on her lap, she propped her head up, delivered a few precisely directed pats, and evoked what will go down as one of the greatest burps I’ve ever heard come out of something that small. Lesson learned.

And I am going on record to say that changing a diaper can either be the easiest or the most difficult thing in the world.  It’s all up to the kid.  I changed baby’s diaper a handful of times while she was here, and a couple of times it was a breeze.  She laid still, didn’t fuss, and the whole process took a couple of minutes from start to finish.  However, there were a few times when my work was met with resistance.

I’m fairly certain she was doing it just to give me a hard time, too.  Occasionally she would lock her legs straight out, making it nearly impossible to get a diaper on or off.  She also had a knack for peeing in the midst of a diaper change, thus resulting in the need for yet another diaper, as the clean one I had put on her 10 seconds prior became instantly sullied.  The whole time, she had this look on her face as if to say, “What?  Seriously, what are you going to do about it?  I’m going to wait for you to take this wet diaper off of me, and then as soon as the new one is on, I’m going to unleash on that, and you’re going to love me regardless.”  It’s true, I do.

How could I not love a face like this?

In addition to being Uncle Mike, I was also appointed another very important position.  I’ll give you a hint.

Okay, that pretty much gives it away.  Wifey and I were honored to be chosen as Godparents, and I had fun telling the baby to “Never go against the family” in my mobster voice when no one else was around.

All told, it was a very fun experience to be around the baby for two weeks.  I got a glimpse into what life is like for new parents, and from the outside looking in, it looks like it can be tough at times, but rewarding always.  It’s tough for me to make a fair assessment though, since I was basically on a regimen of 100% fun, and 0% work and responsibility.  Hey, that’s what Uncles are for.

One love,

10