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Friday, February 29, 2008

'and on that farm he had a pregnant lady symbolizing a pig. E-I-E-I-O!'

so. the next time mrs nice guy complains about her pregnancy--that she "can't sleep," that she "feels enormous," that she "still barfs every morning," that she's "always exhausted," that she has "sciatica"--i'm going to gently, but firmly, remind her that at least she's not locked in a cage. naked. on all fours. in public. as a metaphor for a pig.

stay classy,

Thursday, February 28, 2008

garfield minus garfield

this is seriously the best thing i have seen all year.

all right, fine. allow me to explain why: when i was a wee lad, Garfield was the first comic strip that i read. that, and Peanuts. but Garfield was the first strip that i "got." you know? i thought it was hi-larious. the cat loves lasagna! that's fucking comedy! you can imagine my dismay when i got older that -- in addition to getting lazy, narrow-minded, cheap, cowardly, mean-spirited and reviled by my peers -- i realized that Garfield is just not funny. it is, in fact, the opposite of funny. instead of mirth, it summons despair and violent rage.

however! now, by removing Garfield from the strip entirely, the sense of wonder and joy i once derived from reading Garfield has been restored! it's funny again! yay!

i guess they rejected "No Country for Twin Porn Burglers"

here it is, barely feb 28 on a leap year and already we have a leading contender for the best headline of the year, if not ever, courtesy of the associated press:

Twin porn actors charged in burglery

sweet honey in the rock, there is so much goodness in that wee little phrase. although i suspect it doesn't really need to be a four page story. and there aren't even pictures.

'it's an exciting movie'

dad screens Star Wars, Episode IV for his three year old. dad asks daughter to rehash the movie. dad tapes kid. mad cuteness ensues. [spoiler alert: do not watch this if you've never seen Star Wars. crucial information about Darth Vader, Obi Kenobi and the "shiny guy" robot revealed herein].

props to daddy types for the link.

Monday, February 25, 2008

dan zizzie in the hizzie

sunday we met up with some friends and took the kids to see dan zanes, who is of course the reigning pied piper of family music (without, i'm hoping, that whole leading-children-off-to-their-deaths motif). sometimes, as much as i'd like to deny it, it's hard to be a young parent in park slope and not endure the creeping suspicion that i am a craven yuppie scumbag hipster-lite stereotype. thankfully i am not self-aware enough to be too painfully plagued. so, with cheer, the fam hopped on the 5th avenue bus yesterday after breakfast and headed north to the Brooklyn Academy of Music. in no time it turned into the Dan Zanes express: every person who would board the bus was either a parent or a toddler. or horrified to find themselves on some bourgeois nightmare re-imagining of ken kesey's Further schoolbus packed with midget merry pranksters.

the opera hall at BAM is gorgeous -- DZ called it the Carnegie Hall of Brooklyn, and so it is. when we got to our seats we were astonished to find that $22 placed us third row center. the Man Himself was a little jarringly onstage doing last minute sound-checky things. he smiled and waved at folks as they walked in. it felt like he was welcoming us into his living room -- the performer/audience wall thus shattered, it never fully reconfigured for the duration of the show.

but, i mean really, check the proximity:

ah, but i am getting ahead of myself.

now, i am on record as having certain, well,
grown-up feelings for one particular ms. laurie berkner. but i have to say, in recent months one of Zanes's bandmates has been catching my eye on the concert DVD (and late-night google image searches). barbara brousal is raven haired, slinky, sophisticated and mysteriously sultry -- a deeply compelling contrast to laurie's bouncy, sproingy, cutesy colorful playfulness. now, don't get me wrong: i still love me some berkner. but i was verrrrry much looking forward to seeing BB in action yesterday.

imagine my dismay upon perusing the program only to note that there was no mention whatsoever of barbara brousal! o, heartbreak! mrs nice guy took, i thought, a bit too much delight in my obvious deflation.

but! then the show started. Zanes had vacated the stage to change. Collin Brooks, his usual dapper drummer, was the first on stage. then came Saskia Lane on upright bass, followed by John Foti on accordion and Elena Moon Park on fiddle. who, i wondered, would dare to take the place of my dearly departed brousal? barbara! even though you share a Christian name with a woman who drove my first grade carpool, i hardly knew ye. agh! fine. let us get a good look at the person who doth claim to replace you ...



oh my. my oh my. it is, indeed, a lady named Sonia De Los Santos, who hails from Mexico. she may have some pretty mighty shoes to fill, people. but, let me tell you, i learned yesterday that there is no such thing as global warming. the reason the polar ice caps are melting is because of Sonia's smile:


uh, sorry. but i mean, come on. THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE A KID'S CONCERT. dan zanes has some serious mojo working for him in the painfully adorable bandmate department, i'll tell you that much.

ahem. so anyway the man of the hour tells us that he's got a new album coming out in a couple months called Nueva York or something and it's got a lot of latino and hispanic roots flavors to it -- salsa, meringue, norteno, etc. (probably not too many narcorridos, though, sadly). so we were treated to a few ditties from the new rekkid. and this being brooklyn, his home town, he played "wonder wheel," his homage to the coney island ferris wheel. i keep waiting for the Dan Zanes Backlash, but astonshingly it fails to arrive. maybe it's not so astonishing. the sound mix was perfect, the lighting warm. his song choice was tasteful, his dance moves endearingly ridiculous. there were songs about monkeys and songs about mary mack, silver buttons and all. there were anti-war stalwarts ("i'm gonna lay down my sword and shield ...") and pro-immigration tunes. at the end of it all, he did his James-Brown-I'm-Exhausted-to-the-Point-of-Collapse bit, hand towel and all. then he played the traditional Zanes end-of-show waltz, "sidewalks of new york." he stepped down off the stage and slinked through the unwashed masses out into the lobby. he vanished. dan zanes can put on a hell of a show.

there were, per usual, a smattering of guest appearances: tap dancer derrick k. grant brought, um, 'da noise and i guess 'da funk. BombaYo, from williamsburg, did their ferociously badass puerto rican folk dancing to poly rhythmic chants (toddler nice guy: "look! ballerinas!" ah, if only ...); the Filipino Arts & Music Ensemble was adorable with their twelve-thousand mandolins played with huggable awkwardness by 13 year olds ("the most strings i've ever seen on stage at one time ever!" says ZanesHimself). anna zanes, dan's daughter, was there in all of her early-teen glory and she played the flute and daddy dan sang along and she had a friend with her and it was cuter than baby pandas. bless.

then, of course, there was Father Goose. he didn't just hop on stage. he swarmed it. he had a posse. he brought his boys. he had a hype man! at a kid's concert! a hype man! a hype man who i am pretty sure had a glass eye for reasons we'd be better off not knowing about. dan zanes is rad for many reasons -- the all-inclusiveness, the you-can-too vibe, the exquisite choice of songs. but chief among the reasons that he is rad is turning
Rankin Don into Father Motherfucking Goose. if brooklyn is the dollhouse that dan zanes built, father goose is the guy who tore the damn roof off it. jaysus.

so, yes. dan zanes puts on a hell of a show. but "children's music?" pishposh. this was as good a performance as a performance can get. you could ask for no better critic than my three-foot-tall daughter who weaseled her way to the front of the baby most pit. there she was, palms down on the stage, bouncing up and down for a solid hour. when she woke up from her post-concert nap, we asked her: "do you remember what you did this morning?" she paused and furrowed her tiny brow with a gravitas that would make walter cronkite look like pee wee herman. "ummmm," she replied. "i can't remember."

Sunday, February 24, 2008

there will be hackneyed headlines

allow me to take the occasion of the oscars to bring up something that has been bothering me lately: lazy headline writers of the world, the jig is up! time to retire the cliche "there will be ..." and "no country for ..." constructs. they've both been done to death. behold, from this month alone (i'd love to lay the blame for this on the writer's strike, but that somehow seems like wishful thinking):

  1. There Will be Disappointment; Cinematical, 2/24/08
  2. There Will be Oscars; Times-Picayune, 2/24/08
  3. There Will be Gold; Baltimore Sun, 2/24/08
  4. There Will be Confusion; McClatchy Newspapers, 2/24/08
  5. There Will be Booze; New York Post, 2/24/08
  6. There Will be ... Oscar!; The Witchita Eagle, 2/24/08
  7. Oscars: This Year There Will be Milk; Anderson Herald Bulletin, 2/24/08
  8. There Will be Fun Trivia About The Oscars; Cleveland Plain Dealer, 2/23/08
  9. There Will be Blood; The Mirror, 2/23/08
  10. There Will be Oscar Specials; Suburbarazzi, 2/22/08
  11. There Will be Oscars; New York Times, 2/22/08
  12. Cool Swag of the Weel: There Will be Bullwhips; Cinematical, 2/22/08
  13. There Will be Gold: Oscar Picks; Express From The Washington Post (wtf?), 2/22/08
  14. There Will be Cake! Portal 2 Confirmed; PC Gaming, 2/22/08
  15. There Will be Blood; Seattle Post Intelligencer, 2/21/08
  16. There Will be Oscars; The Guardian UK, 2/21/08
  17. There Will be Stars on Sunday at the Academy Awards in Hollywood; Voice of America, 2/21/08
  18. There Will be Lots of Gazing at Stars on Oscar Night; The Tampa Tribune, 2/21/08
  19. Hollywood and the Internet: There Will be Blood; The Economist, 2/21/08
  20. There Will be Gloom and Doom at the Oscars; New Zealand Herald, 2/21/08
  21. Drink Up: There Will be Rum; Seattle Post Intelligencer, 2/20/08
  22. There Will be Oil; The Grist, 2/20/08
  23. There Will be Blood Over Stolen Laptop; Silicon Republic, 2/20/08
  24. Eco-homes: There Will be Floods; The Independent UK, 2/20/08
  25. For Scott Rudin, There will be quality; The LA Times, 2/19/08
  26. There Will be Memories; New York Times, 2/19/08
  27. There Will be Blood on CBS via 'Dexter'; San Jose Mercury News, 2/15/08
  28. State Budget, There Will be Blood; Arizona Daily Star, 2/15/08
  29. There Will be Blood; New York Times (Maureen Dowd), 2/3/08

There Will be Beating a Dead Horse. but wait! there's more:

  1. No Country for Lumpy Thighs; Chicago Tribune, 2/24/08
  2. No Country for Young Men; The Grist, 2/24/08
  3. No Country for Old Systems; Multichannel News, 2/23/08
  4. No Country for Oscar Men; Kolkata Newsline, 2/22/08
  5. No Country for Just Art; Economic Times of India, 2/22/08
  6. No Country for Paul Thomas Anderson;, 2/21/08
  7. No Country for Old Dictators; Slate, 2/19/08
  8. No Country for Old Phones; Las Cruces Sun News, 2/19/08
  9. No Country for Two Best Pictures; The Simon, 2/19/08
  10. No Country for Inattentive Critics; New Republic, 2/18/08
  11. No Country for Safe Motels?; AOL News Bloggers (Mo Rocca!), 2/18/08
  12. No Country for Young Men; The District Weekly, 2/13/08
  13. No Country for ... Well, Anyone; Daily Green, 2/13/08
  14. No Country for Old Movies; IHT, 2/12/08
  15. No country for old men; Guardian Unlimited, 2/11/08
  16. No country for old oil; The Daily Titan, 2/10/08
  17. No Country for Old Metaphors; New York Times, 2/5/08
  18. No Country for Old People?; Inside Bay Area, 2/3/08

i could go on, but i'm starting to go blind. besides you probably get the point. i'd like to think that with the oscars finally going down tonight this phenomenon will become a thing of the past. but this blog is No Country for Such Optimism.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

carry on, girlfriend

my god. i want to interview the father of this young lady so i can do everything he did in raising her. he must be so very, very proud. is 2-and-a-half too young to start in with the electric piano lessons and FM classic rock saturation? i mean, seriously, this is incredible. it's like she's from the past and the future at the same time:

Friday, February 22, 2008

hello baby

What seas what shores what grey rocks and what islands
What water lapping the bow
And scent of pine and the woodthrush singing through the fog
What images return
O my daughter.

-- T.S. Eliot, "Marina" 1930

Thursday, February 21, 2008

is this where the wild things are?

whoa. could this possibly be an actual screentest from the Where the Wild Things Are movie? one can only hope. spectacularly exciting:

(hat tip to gf.)

UPDATE: an observant reader kindly points out this annoying news to us. Annoying.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

sexing the soup dumpling

so tomorrow we're going in for the 20-week sonogram. technically, i guess el preggo is at week 23. but we're both late bloomers, so we figured why not do this thing after our own fashion.

we've decided to go in and find out what the sex of our unborn spawn is. last time around we opted to be surprised. the 10 months of my bridebird's first pregnancy constituted a delicious exercise in suspense, terror, thrills and baited breath. this resulted in a fairly hilarious birth story that we'll be dining out on until our daughter herself gives birth. i'm too lazy to look it up and link to it now, but suffice it to say, it culminated in an orgiastically joyous blood-spilling release of anxiety.

anyway, we're too tired for all that shit this time around. we want to know. we want to know if we have enough hand-me-downs. we want to know what stripe of sibling to tell our first born she should be prepared to torture for the next 80 years. we want as few surprises this time around as our fragile, addled psyches can take.

also, neither of us can agree on a name this time around, so we want to narrow the field of options by half (or, i guess given that we live in park slope, by one-eighth).

so in 12 short hours, i'll know the sex of the sea turtle floating in my spouse's belly. i'll know the flavor of our soup dumpling. i'll know if i'll be spending the rest of my life coming home to a household of lovely ladies ... or son who must ultimately annihilate me (hey dutch, congrats).

i do have some ambivalence about finding out. it just doesn't feel natural. but we are both too tired to resist the ineluctable. we submit. bring it on.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

true confessions: valentine's edition

my darling bride was out of down for a bit this past week. she had some business in houston or ontario or hong kong or something. i don't know. all i know is that she was gone, off earning daddy a new pair of shoes.

so i took the opportunity to hire a baby-sitter and go out a-drinkin'.

i should probably mention that i hit the town with a gift card (at a cheesy local bar that recently banned strollers, sparking a predictably boneheaded debate). i probably wouldn't have gone there if i hadn't had the gift card. ok. technically speaking i guess you could say that it was "my wife's" gift card and that i had "stolen it out of her wallet." i should also mention that it was "valentine's day." but the fact remains, i had me a night on the town. and it was courtesy of her. now if that's not the true meaning of love, i don't know what is.

i went out and drank delicious lagavulin single malt. for those uninitiated in the world of scotch, let me break it down for you: lagavulin tastes liquid smoke, filtered through a mound of peat (which i believe is composed of partially-decayed vegetation). doesn't that sound delicious? i first developed a taste for scotch in general -- and lagavulin in particular -- when i had a boss who poured out two fingers of the stuff every friday at 5:30. he was my favorite boss ever. one time, when i was in the office whistling, he said to me "there are only two reasons for you to be whistling: 1) you're happy. 2) you're stupid. well, if you're working for me, you'd better be neither."

i invited my friend, a honcho at p.i.n.k. vodka, which is not what i drank. neither did he. i used the gift card that i stole from my wife to buy him baker's bourbon. when the gift card ran out -- which was very fast -- we went to another, cheaper bar and drank buds. i went home and paid the sitter, feeling not a little like a scumbag for stumbling home at 1 am (at least i was alone!) and scrawling her a check because i had no more cash because i had spent it all on drink because my pregnant wife was out of town for business on valentine's day.

i settled in for a late-night meal of microwaved leftovers (mmm, sage chicken and apples). then the doorbell rang! i was stunned! who could be ringing me at almost-2 am on february 15!? i opened the door to a gaggle of clearly-wasted 20-somethings. their leader -- the most sober looking of the bunch -- stepped up to me. she said: "hey! we're here for jeff's party! are you jeff?"

hmmm. i slurred, "no ithinkyou have thewrongadd ress. no party hhhhhere." she seemed prepared to accept this information at face value. but then! one of the dudes in her posse -- squinty eyes blazing red -- came forward and asked me "are you sure there's no party back there, dude?" oh, man. i wanted to kick him in his tiny hipster 'nads. i took a deep breath and summoned as much indignation and self-righteous rage as i could before saying, dripping with sanctimony: "look. i have a sleeping 2-year-old in here. there is no party. sorry to disappoint." -- you know, kinda as if i hadn't been out drinking for the four previous hours myself.

the girl was horrified, totally embarrassed. she was all "omigod, i'm so sorry." i mean, she probably thought they woke me up. or at least disturbed a humble family man from his nocturnal contemplation. and so they all slinked off, chastened. as i watched their hunched shoulders sulk away from my house, part of me wished i had pretended to be jeff and invited them in for a little impromptu soiree. still, i was enjoying my moment, taking great pleasure in how bad they felt.

i know i should feel a little ashamed ... or at least a wee bit like a hypocrite. but screw that! it was probably my favorite valentine's day of all time.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

my head hurts

the details blog wants to know: are you raising a douchebag? i'm a little disappointed that #1 on the douchebag checklist isn't "if you frequently read the details blog, especially for parenting tips, then you may have douchebaggery encoded into your DNA -- meaning yes, you are probably raising a douchebag."

that said, resse witherspoon would like you to know that you are, indeed, raising a douchebag. the highest paid actress in hollywood is in fact so worried about her kids turning out like your kids that she actually wants you to abuse them: "I wouldn’t want my children to miss out on any of that teasing and bullying. Don’t you think it kind of makes you who you are — when you don’t make the soccer team?" i so wish i was an 11-year-old classmate of little rumour pax apple maddox witherspoon so I could steal--his? her?--lunch money and then administer a few swirlies. because that would be, you know, the un-douchebaggy thing to do.

in other parenting news, switzerland wants you to jerk off your toddlers. that is all.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


so the empire film group has acquired the production and distribution rights to Henson, a screenplay by robert d. slane about dreamy welsh rugby player, Gavin Henson.

wait! no.

it's a biopic about Jim Henson! w00t! sweet baby jebus, please do not let hollywood take another cherished part of my childhood and shit all over it (see also: star wars, transformers, hitchiker's guide to the galaxy, deep throat). *tortured sigh* the screenwriter's resume does not inspire much confidence, does it?

so since today is february 14, consider this post a valentine's to jim henson -- a towering hero of mine.

and my valentine's day gift to all of you? this: 'Time Piece,' an Oscar-nominated short film Henson made in 1966 when he was apparently tripping his muppets off. deliciously bizarre. keep an eye peeled for the office messenger boy -- that's a young Frank Oz. also, appreciate the audio -- the sound team included Rudy van Gelder, the greatest jazz engineer ever, as well as Bill Schwartau, one of Duke Ellington's engineers ... enjoy:

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

'form and taste replaced by lumpy foul things'

john kricfalusi, the beautiful demented mind behind The Ren & Stimpy Show, has an excellent blog. i highly recomment visiting it frequently -- not only is he a brilliant animator and wickedly funny, but he's also very strange. and rad. (my favorite ren & stimpy episode: space madness!!!!) today boingboing alerts us to a fascinating and deeply depressing kricfalusi post that allows you to witness the decline and fall of western civilization ... before your very eyes! sweet!

so it turns out that yogi the bear is a pretty good prism through which to view our culture. hey, booboo! watch as the deterioration of his likeness unfolds in lock-step with that of our modern world. mmm, metaphoralicious.

actually, this all reminds me of r. crumb's masterful A Short History of America:

(not seen: the last panel, wherein depressed beyond recovery, you commence drinking yourself to death.)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

parenting like a god

i'm reading the Aeneid. (that's right, the Aeneid. je ne fuck around pas, people.) anyway, i'm only like three pages into it and i feel like i've already read 24 books.

here's where i'm at: the trojan fleet, still reeling from defeat at the hands of achilles, is sailing the high seas, led by aeneas (our hero, seen above, getting the hell out of town). the "queen of the gods" juno (total, total bitch) bribes the Lord of the Winds to start a storm and drown aeneas's fleet. this, naturally pisses off neptune, who totally bitch-slaps the wind god for stepping on his turf. neptune calms the seas and aeneas lands safely in carthage, where he mourns his lost comrades for all of 10 hours. then his mom (venus was her name), disguised as a young huntress, tells him the history of the city. she envelops him in a magical cloak of invisibility mist, until he ends up in the company of queen dido--in the (irony alert) temple of juno--where he learns that most of his fleet actually survived! the mist dissolves and dido touchingly serenades aeneas with "I want to thank you / for giving me the best day of my life." then he starts to tell the story of Troy's fall (spoiler alert: it involves a big wooden horse, "the monster's womb is packed with soldiers bristling weapons.") here he is chillaxing with dido:

so all of that happens in like three pages, which means i may feel compelled to blog about it again in the future. more importantly, some priceless pearls of parenting wisdom occur in these opening verses. i am deeply considering using only ancient texts for parenting advice from now own. if this is how the gods (and half-gods) did it, then it's got to be good enough for me. check it out:

  • after aeneas's fleet is completely routed on the high seas, venus, his mom, complains to jupiter, Father of Men and Gods. jupiter had basically already sworn that aeneas would emerge victoriant, his ancestors fated to found rome. but here aneas is getting reamed by juno (seriously, what a bitch). venus literally says to her dad: "you promised! Father, what motive changed your mind?" you realize what this means don't you? even venus turns into a whiny brat when she doesn't get her way. close your eyes and picture yourself as a 12 year old saying: "but daaaad, you prooomised!" even venus, THE GODDESS OF LOVE AND BEAUTY, reverts to her petulant teenage self around her old man. you have no idea how much better this makes me, a lowly 33-year-old mortal, feel about sulking around my own folks.
  • jupiter is a total dad: completely unfazed by the drama and thoroughly patronizing. "smiling down on her with the glance that clears the sky and calms the tempest, lightly kissing her on the lips," jupiter looks down on his daughter and says "relieve yourself of fear ... the fate of your children stands unchanged, I swear." ... basically, he's all: "relax, venus. i'm not going back on my word. just chill." he's vaguely indulgent and vaguely mocking at the same time. it's a solid balance that i'm going to work on perfecting.
  • when aeneas is marooned on the Carthiginian coast, venus disguises herself as a local girl out on a hunt. she asks aeneas, tauntingly, if he's seen her sister who is "wearing a spotted lynx-skin" (slut). aeneas says no, he hasn't seen any such girl and, by the way, you look kind of familiar, almost like a goddess. venus gets all flirty and says, basically, "i bet you say that to all the Tyrian girls." then she tells aeneas all about dido, who she's obviously trying to fix him up with--just like a mother. hey, yentl, step off! sheesh. you of all people should know his thing with dido is so going to end badly.
  • then venus, still disguised, asks aeneas where he's from. aeneas starts telling her this long sad-sack story all about his woes in battle and at sea. but before he gets very far, "venus could bare no more of his laments and broke in on his tale of endless hardship: 'Whoever you are I scarcely think the Powers hate you.'" ... so venus, who just a couple of pages ago was whining to her dad about not getting her way, is now telling her own son -- who's had a really fucking bad seven years -- to stop feeling so sorry for himself! christ, what a pain in the ass!
  • after venus dismisses aeneas ("Now off you go, move on"), he finally realizes that she's his mom. this totally pisses him off, as you can imagine. "why, you too, cruel as the rest? so often you ridicule your son with your disguises!" now, if you ask me, nothing says "proactive parenting" like disguising yourself to spy on your kids, right? and hmm, aeneas's whiny-whine sounds awfully familiar doesn't it? sounds a little like, i don't know, how a certain love-goddess complained to her own father, n'est-ce pas? and, behold, the circle of life is complete.

in conclusion, i learned everything i needed to know about being a parent from the GODS. take that, dr. brazelton.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

they might be fucking rad, is what they might be

sometimes i wish i were a kid again. because sometimes today's kid stuff is unprecedentedly awesome. exhibit A:

i predict big things for these guys. big things.

Friday, February 08, 2008

too much baby

so the kid has been weirding us out lately.

clearly, she's processing the fact that mama has a little tiny baby inside her tummy. this has got to be tough news to digest when you've only been around for 2.6 years. throws your whole worldview for a loop, i'd imagine. indeed she's starting to short circuit a bit. our child has taken to alternating from pretending to be a tiny little baby herself to pretending to be pregnant herself to, my personal favorite, pretending to be both a tiny little baby and pregnant at the same time! babies making babies, indeed. not even 3 and already she is making allusions to my main man
Sly Almighty.

some examples of this sublime weirdness: she crawls around. a lot. this is something she didn't even do when it was age-appropriate -- she was never a crawler. but now, she's crawling the skin on her knees down to bone. and, on top of that, now she refuses to answer us unless we address her as "tiny baby." so, for example, we say "come here and eat your oatmeal." she, if she actually deigns to answer at all, says "have to say tiny little baby!" so we say "come here and eat your oatmeal, tiny baby." and then she crawls over. and then she refuses to eat unless we spoonfeed her "like a baby."

this, you might be able to imagine, while initially quite charming becomes eye-gougingly annoying with a quickness. an eye-gouging that is, rest assured, performed with baby-safe rubber-tipped spoons that change color if--GOD FORBID--the oatmeal you are about to stuff down your "tiny baby's" broken-record gullet is two degrees too warm.

ahem. sorry about that. (mr nice guy does not actually endorse stuffing anything down anyone's gullet, broken record or otherwise. so settle down.)

now, the other night, as mrs nice guy was giving le bebe a bath, the kid started rubbing her tummy. she said, "i have a tiny baby, like you. so you have to be careful." and then she pretended to pull the baby out of her navel and show it to mama. "see?" mama, being the trooper that she is, said "are you a tiny baby or do you have a tiny baby inside you?" the answer, naturally, was "i'm a tiny baby. yeah. and i have a tiny baby in my tummy." mama: "oh, well let me give your tiny baby a bath too." to which the kid replied, in a voice that echoed off our tiled walls for seven hours, "NO MAMA. I AM ONLY PRETENDING TO HAVE A BABY."

anyway, it goes on like this. when she's being a tiny baby (and we want to avoid The Shrieking) we have to rock her, give her milk in a sippy cup as if it's a tiny bottle, carry her everywhere. when the child is feeling pregnant, we have to be careful with her tummy because there's a baby in there and she's going to throw up. just like mama. in conclusion, we are living with a schizophrenic dwarf with a hair-trigger scream reflex.

the weirdest and, i'll be honest, most gradually irritating thing about the child right now: whenever she's in "tiny baby" mode, she crawls around, yes. but she does so with her mouth wide open. she largely refuses to speak. she crawls right up to you and grabs ahold of your leg. she looks up at you, mouth all agape and ... begins panting. like a winded puppy.

you say: "hi, kid. why are you grabbing my jeans and breathing like a demented obscene caller?" she pants, HRUUH HURRGGH GHHR. "uh. why are you breathing like that?" More hyperventilating. "sorry. why are you breathing like that, tiny little baby?" more heavy respiration. "babies don't do that in real life, you know." Pant-Pant-Pant. "Where's your mother? Go grab her leg and breathe on her." Huff-puff-heave-gasp. "STOP IT OR I'LL START WEEPING!"

this has gone on for weeks now. lots of heavy breathing at our place. both my bride and i have consulted each other: "do you know why she's breathing like that?" "no, do you?" "no, i only pant like that when you're wearing your lederhosen."

finally, i had my eureka moment. framed on the wall of our child's room is the birth announcement we sent out on the occasion of her, well, birth. included with the announcement was an excellent snapshot my wife took of the baby yawning or possibly passing some excellent gas -- but it looks like she's laughing ... or, i guess, panting. here it is. this is the image the child apparently associates with being a baby; it is, at least, the exact face she makes when she's being a "tiny baby":

Thursday, February 07, 2008

i am risen

holy shit! the masses have spoken! and, lo, the asses have heard!

i really have truly missed you, internetly peoples. a life without your e-mails and your comments is a life unworthy of living. interactivity is good! just use protection! let's not ever do that to each other again, m'kay?

ok -- before we begin updating here, let's get everyone up to speed on la vida nice guy. many things to report since we last spoke waaaay back in october of last year.
  1. i done got the wife knocked up again! oh fuck! you'd think we'd have learned our lesson the first time around, but no. we're just a couple of procreatin' fools. she's due in late June. no need to congratulate us--just send incredibly large cash donations to my paypal account. thanks.
  2. the Illness came again. my bride, fragile barfing flower that she is, was deathly ill the first trimester, as she was with the first pregnancy. fortunately we were prepared this time and dosed her instantly with anti-nausea medication so powerful it is reserved for chemo patients and people who accidentally catch an episode of The Hills. she was only sick for three months this time around, instead of five.
  3. pretty sure she plans on drugging me and performing a vasectomy on me as i sleep. so that i never do this to her--or anyone else--ever again.
  4. i turned 33 last week. the age of The Christ when he died. man, i feel so under-accomplished.
  5. um. that's it.
  6. really? nothing else to report in the last four months of your exciting fast-lane new york city life? you got someone pregnant and she barfed a lot and you got older and ... that's it?
  7. er. kinda.
  8. loser.

there you have it! some of you have found me at my family-friendly blog-away-from-blog. thanks for your patronage over there -- it's been a relative success, and i will continue to update there as well as here. but right now, i have a little present for those of you who have stuck with me: fuck! shit! pisscuntwhore!

god you have no idea how good that felt. and welcome back.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


anyone still out there? like the mighty phoenix, mr nice guy is open to the idea of rising from the ashes of his former self. bigger, he hopes to be. stronger. more. harder. faster. embarrassinger.