Saturday, November 29, 2008

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

St. Baldrick's 2009!

Friends, family, Kanadians, and the rest of my stalkers,

Cancer Sucks!

With that out of the way, let's see what we can do to help find cures for childhood cancers. You know a great way to do it? Well I do. Help St. Baldrick's! Yeah. Come on out to Helen Fitzgeralds on Saturday, March 7, 2009 from 12-8pm. Throw back a few drinks and watch me get my hair and maybe even a beard buzzed.

But I always shave my head? Well you haven't seen me lately. To celebrate the anniversary of Andy's unofficially being cancer-free, I stop shaving my head on 10/31. That gives it quite some time to grow out and be ratty.

Plus, I've heard that this year Julie may even be getting her hair buzzed!

Fun and games aside, think about something for a minute. One day everything is just fine, the next day you're being told that your child, your own precious innocent flesh and blood, has cancer. You ask questions about prognosis. They can't be answered. You have to wait to see what MRI and CT scans look like. You have to wait to see if he or she will respond to chemo. You have to shave his or her head as hair starts to fall out. You have to clean up puke because of the nasty side effects of chemo. You have to wake up every morning only to learn all over again that this may be your last Christmas with your baby.

No matter how old you are, cancer sucks. But when it happens to a child, a baby, that did nothing wrong, it is a life-changing experience for everyone, regardless of the outcome.

The proceeds from St. Baldrick's events go toward finding cures for childhood cancer. Please help in any way you can. Even if it's just a dollar! I know these are trying economic times, but surely you can afford $5? $10? Maybe even $20?

Please go donate today. Honor Andrew Kelley by donating to have my head shaved at

One final note. This Thanksgiving, be most thankful that your children are healthy. And if you don't have children, be thankful that you are healthy.

Thank you for your support. It truly means a lot to us.

- Dan, Julie, Andy, Emma, and Joey

P.S. Hey "Neighbor" - I'll (finally) submit your check for you. Thank you!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


I am thankful that it is not last year. Remember last Thanksgiving? We're a very traditional family and had to forego our Thanksgiving traditions. We had a nice one, but still. And we missed seeing a lot of family. Andy was fresh off a hospital visit and his counts were very low. I was still reeling from the loss of my life mentor. But at least we were all happy that Andy's surgery was successful.

I don't really want to dwell on it.

  • I'm thankful that it is not last year.
  • I'm thankful Andy is cured.
  • I'm thankful we get to have a normal holiday season this year.
  • I'm thankful Joey's doing so well in school.
  • I'm thankful Julie found me in my early 20's or I wouldn't have made it to 30. And I truly believe that.
  • I'm thankful I have a wonderful wife and kids.
  • I'm thankful we have a wonderful extended family in P&B.
  • I'm thankful Greg is not Kanadian by blood (sorry P).
  • I'm thankful for the McRib.
  • I'm thankful that we're starting to get our heads above water financially (again).
  • I'm thankful that I get to trash Greg's house this Christmas.
  • I'm thankful for girls who are too pretty for pr0n but are nice enough to do it anyway.
  • I'm thankful that my golf swing was better this year.
  • I'm thankful that I'm healthy enough to play golf.
  • I'm thankful for the whole 80's revival thing going on musically.
  • I'm thankful for Schlafly beer.
  • I'm thankful that I'm old enough to have been there when GnR had real music. Metallica too.
  • I'm thankful that I'm young enough to not remember John Lennon being shot. (ooo! don't you feel old now?)
  • I'm thankful that I work in an industry that is growing despite the recession.
  • I'm thankful for not having ended a sentence with a preposition, rock on!

OMG! I'm Not a Gamer Anymore!

WTF happened? When I was a small child I had a Caleco Vision with the Atari 2600 adapter. I played Donkey Kong and PacMan nonstop. Then, of course, I played ET. Like the rest of the gaming world, I gave up on video games after ET.

I then switched over to the Commodore 64 and played Ultima III and Ultima IV. Then to the PC. Add Ultima V. Ultima VI. Etc.

Then there was the NES. I was all about Super Mario Bros I, II, and III. Mega Man. Dragon Warrior. Zelda. Etc.

I played that until the Sega Genesis. I used to sit around listening to Stone Temple Pilots playing NHL 95 for hours on end. And Mortal Kombat of course.

Then it was back to the PC. Wolf3d. Doom. Quake. Quake 2. Quake 3. Soldier of Fortune. You get the idea. FPS games. There was also my on-again-off-again love affair with Ultima Online that started in 1997 and continues to this day.

Enter the PS1. And the PS2. Sure there were other games but it was all about the Madden franchise. Hours upon hours, games upon games, seasons upon seasons.

Finally my PS2 died a couple years ago. Because of the price of the PS3 and XBOX 360, there was no way I was going to upgrade. Back to the PC. More Ultima Online. The occasional trip into Oblivion or Sim City Societies.

Then Andy got sick. That pretty much put an end to my UO addiction. And for some reason I can't get back into it.

I was thinking of giving WoW a shot. But ya know. $15 a month. For a game that I will rarely, if at all, play. Can't see it.

Why can't I get into video games anymore? They're just not fun. Maybe that's why I like DnD? Because it's back to the basics, no hard drives, no CPUs, no RAM, no display adapters, no controllers, etc. Or maybe because it's fun playing an annoying little pissant of a gnome bard?

Or maybe it's because I'm so sick of people screaming, "lol j00 got pwnz3d n00b! now gfy"

Crap Weasel.

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Axl Rose Experiment

I refuse to call them GnR. GnR only has 2 albums - Appetite and Lies. The Illusions are great albums that feature some of the guys from GnR. Spaghetti suxed. You get the idea.

Like most things Axl has done in the 20 years that have gone by since 1988, it sux. The music isn't bad but Axl's singing... jeez... Unbearable.

Kinda made me feel old when I read a user review on iTunes from a kid saying his mom used to listen to GnR when she was his age.

Words of Wisdom from my Dad

"A recession is when my neighbor loses his job. A depression is when I lose my job."

I like it.

For those of you who don't know, a recession has many possible technical meanings, but a generally-accepted meaning could be when there is negative GDP.

The difference between a recession and a depression is that recessions are self-correcting in time. Depressions are not.

The Great Depression (note the caps) was a combination of many unfortunate events that led to a long period of severe depression.

Companies now have trillions and trillions of dollars in cash. Newer regulations are in place. Even if we do enter a depression (not capitalized) you'll see that it will not be anything like the Great Depression.

Personal opinion? Everyone not in New York or California will come out of this recession within 400 days. New York and / or California may have a worse problem. Screw them.

Speaking of Kalifornia.... Why the hell are so many people STILL opposed to ghey marriage? So you may have religious opposition. Why should you force your religious views on everyone? Isn't that what Al Qaeda does? "Me: 1. You: 0"

I'm still opposed to Kanadian marriage.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

I Say You CAN Make Up Sleep!

I don't care what the experts say. When I'm on call I miss a lot of sleep. So that Saturday and/or Sunday I usually sleep in. And by sleep in I mean sleep in. Like I don't get out of bed until 10:00.

And you know what? I always feel so much better!

Sometimes when we really have problems I'll be awake for 24 hours or longer. By the time I get home I pass out. And I pass out hard. For at least 12 hours or so.

I saw you CAN make up sleep. Screw the experts.

Friday, November 21, 2008

B. Hussein Obama Taps Timothy Geithner for Treasury Secretary

Who is Timothy Geithner? I wondered the same.

Ok. Sure. So he was, "a key architect of the $30 billion bailout to prevent the bankruptcy of Bear Stearns Cos." Not a good thing if you ask me, but before foresight was 20/20, it wasn't really that horrible. Outside of that, he looks ok.

We'll see.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

No Thoughts Yet

Ok people, quit asking me. I'm not going to really post anything about the big 3 and their bailout just yet. You all know how I feel about it. I feel the same as you (unless your union of course). And yes I think it's funny that they showed up in private jets. And yes I think it's funny that none raised their hands to volunteer to sell those jets.

I don't think they'll get much help. I want to wait and see what is proposed. I'm hearing a thousand different ideas. Some good. Some bad. Some.. well.. we'll see.

Sorry. I have no thoughts yet, other than the same thoughts that you have.

I'll add this. Kit Bond was on KMOX this morning. Keep in mind he's actually a Republican. He's for helping them. With a few catches. The most notable is that the money will come from $50B that was already appropriated to go to the big 3 anyway, only in the form of alternate energy blah blah blah. So basically give them their own money only for different purposes.

So there ya have it. More on this later, I'm sure.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A Random Thought

Since I've been getting into DnD lately (thanks for that P), I was thinking. If I had a DnD character that was a Harper, I'd name it Hannah.

If you get the joke, you're a perv. If you don't you're a prude. Either way you suck.

Monday, November 17, 2008

SPRINTing Toward Bankruptcy

Sprint announced late last week that it is offering voluntary buyout packages to a number of its employees in an attempt to cut costs due to falling subscribership. The company lost over a million subscribers in the 3rd quarter alone. Interestingly enough, they're the only wireless company to have such crazy declines in subscribers.


Well, as of tomorrow Julie and I will be moving from Sprint to AT&T. So maybe I can provide some insight from a subscriber's point of view.

Julie and I have both been with Sprint for years. Both of us have been with Sprint for something along the lines of 10 years. That's close to 20 years of service between the two of us. At an average cost of $60 / month, that's about $14,000.

With that kind of customer loyalty, you'd think we'd get a little something in return. What do we get in return? Let's take a look.

Once our contract expires, we get notices. Sign up now and get $150 toward a new phone. So we go to shop for a new phone. There's one for $150! That means free, right? Nope. You either get $150 off the $300 phone for signing up as a new customer or you can get $150 off the $300 phone for being an existing customer. In other words, the cost of the phone, no matter what, is $150. You don't save any money for being an existing customer.

Long story short, they do absolutely nothing for you.

So let's take this one step further. I contacted Sprint and told them I'll sign a new 2-year contract if they can do something above and beyond for us.

Never so much as received a confirmation that my e-mail was received.

We even tried going into the Sprint store. They were unwilling to budge. I told them they would lose a long-time customer. They walked away and moved onto the next customer.

If you're going to overcharge for a service, you'd better take care of your customers. If you don't, you'll lose them.

Bye Sprint! Thanks for nothing!

I... Uh... Wha????

Rams? What was that? Against the 49ers? I just can't... Wow.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Fiscally-Responsible Christmas Ideas

Here's the short list:
1) Only buy for your immediate family.
2) One "big" present per kid.
3) Two "small" presents per kid.
4) One "big" present for you and your spousal unit. This is a single present for both of you.
5) One "small" present for your spousal unit.
6) One "small" present from your spousal unit.
7) Kanadia sux

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Andy's Speech Therapy Evaluation

So yesterday (Wednesday) we went to the hospital to meet with a speech therapist. She pretty much said what I knew. He can understand what you say to him but he has a hard time saying words. The words he does say tend to start with the right consonant sound but end with a "uh" sound.

So we're looking at weekly speech therapy for a while. Nothing big. Not a huge deal. It would be nice on the pocket book if we could do it once a month. But oh well. We'll live.

So that's the story on Andy's speech. Hopefully he'll be caught up sooner than later but it varies from kid to kid.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Ad Hoc Sandwich Sauce

So I wanted a quick-and-dirty-yet-good samich for lunch today. So I fired up the griddle. A half-pat of butter, a nitrite-free slice of ham, and a nitrite-free slice of turkey later, I was ready to grill that shizznit on some bread with a piece of swiss.

Here's the problem. I needed a sauce.

Never fear, Franks is here!

TBSP butter
TBSP dijon mustard
2 TBSP Franks Red Hot Sauce. Or Crystal. Or whatever.

Throw it in the nuker for 20 seconds.

Mix well.

Let it sit for about 10 minutes.

Put it in the fridge for 1 hour.

Or if you're like I was and are in a hurry, skip the fridge step and put in a salt-water bath for 2 minutes.

So yeah. Throw that on your griddled lunchmeat samich. Good Eats. I think even Alton would agree. ;)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I love it. I work from home Monday through Wednesday. Shortly before Andy turned two he hit the terrible twos. So the kids started going to the babysitter while I relax and work from home by myself.

Well, it's that time of year, along with the freakishly high prices of stuff, that we need to start cutting back on a few things. We need to save some bigtime money this month, so I'm working from home with Emma and Andy again just to see how it goes with the understanding that I'll just take some time off work if I can't work with them.

Ya know what? So far so good! They were very well-behaved yesterday. Today Joey is off school so I have all 3. It's been great actually. They are keeping each other entertained. I've been able to actually work. I can't believe it. And I'm saving $25 a day. $35 today with Joey being off.

I guess I'm pretty lucky that I have some good kids. It could have been much worse.

This time next year Emma will probably be going to school with Joey. Pre-school, not K. Then it will be just Andy and Dad. I'm afraid the poor little guy will be bored stiff. Maybe when that time comes he'll just go to the babysitter so he can have some social interaction.

My switch is finished rebooting, back to work.

Greg sux.

Monday, November 10, 2008

In Kanadia... is a national holiday. They call it, "Nashinul Litur... Lita... Lut.. Lern 2 Red Day" On this day in 1987 the first book to ever be published in Kanadia was, in fact, published. This government-released nonfiction piece entitled, "How to Rape a Moose," was the first of its kind. Kanadians didn't know what to do, as only immigrants knew how to actually read.

With tens of billions of dollars in aid from foreign nations, Kanadia is proud to report that 21 years later, they have successfully graduated 3 high school students with an average reading level of an American 6-year-old.

Kanadia, we salute you. You're making huge strides toward literacy by actually teaching those 3 people to read. Who knows, in another 21 years you may actually be able to teach kids to count past 9!

A truly proud day for Greg.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Rams? Hello? What was that? I know you're a suckass team this year, but that performance today. What? Maybe you should be playing Kanadian Football.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Never Gonna Give You Up

Never Gonna Let You Down
Never Gonna Run Around and
Desert You

Kanada Loves Rick

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Andy's Visit

So Andy had a visit with his oncologist a couple days ago to go along with his CT scan and blood work. It was weird being there again. Andy did real well. He knew where he was. He knew the people. But he wasn't scared. It's kinda like he knew it was over. He did get stuck with an IV but really he was okay with that.

It was good for me to be there again too. I can't really explain why. It was just good for my psyche for me to be there with the little guy. With a healthy little guy, that is.

Julie's home with groceries, must help carry in.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I Love Kids

Today on the way to school I was explaining that Obama won and that it's really not a bad thing because he's better than W. Joey goes, "So if it's not a bad thing, does that mean he changed?" I asked him what he means. "Obama wants us to give our money to people who don't work."

I could have cried I was so proud.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Congratulations Barack Obama

It sure was an exciting campaign on both sides. We've known for the last 4+ years that this would be an historic election. We didn't see the curveball coming from Alaska. But it's been fun.

I gotta say I'm glad Barack beat out Hillary, although I was loving the whole Operation Chaos thing. If nothing else I'm happy because I don't have to hear her tenor monotone speeches. I really got sick of hearing that socialist bitch's voice. Although I'll admit that I did vote for Slick Willy in 1996. Hey what can I say, I was a freshman in college. :)

I do think John McCain was the most electable Republican. I know the staunch conservatives such as Rush didn't really like the idea of Johnny boy being the Republican candidate, but after the last 8 years, the US was NOT ready for another confirmed conservative. Mitt Romney would have lost to Barack by a landslide. And OBTW, the nation sure enjoyed Sarah Palin's 15 minutes.

This nation is cyclical. We give the dems a chance and they screw up. We give the reps a chance and they do fine. Then they screw up. We then give the dems another chance. They're fine. Then they screw up. Wash. Rinse. Repeat

And it looks like the Democrats are well on their way to getting a filibuster-proof Senate. Basically we're entering full-on Democrat years. I'm all for giving them a shot. Let's see how things go. If they start screwing up or moving too far to the left, we'll see Republicans start to take over in congress again. Then start moving toward reps in the White House again. It's a cycle.

Congratulations Barack Obama on winning an historic election.

Hey, it's kinda cool seeing Luke Russert on NBC covering the election.

Zombie or Socialist?

Tough call.

Fortunately I live in a small voting precinct tucked away in a forgotten part of southwest STL city. I walked in, stood in line for about 3 minutes, and was out.

Sorry to dissapoint everyone (except Greg and Julie of course), but I voted for McCain. I hate to turn my back on socialism like that, but there's something about the idea of having a zombie for president that fascinates me.

Although it will make every one of you except Greg & Julie happy, I do worry a bit about the fact that our next prezzy will be Hussein. Mainly for economic reasons. I do have a feeling, though, that McCain overplayed the socialism thing a bit too much. All liberals are socialists at heart, that's true, but I don't think Hussein will turn this place into a socialist state, as Johnny Boy would have us believe.

No matter who wins, they will DEFINITELY be better than W! You can't really get much worse! I can't help but wonder if he will go down in history as our worst president ever, even worse than Hoover and Tricky Dick. But let's not forget, even W was a better option that that fake-ass Kerry. I will now, for the fist time, admit that I regret not voting for Algore.

But I digress.

For what it's worth, I said in 2003 that Hussein would be our next president. If he wins, at least that's another one I can chalk up in the "First to get it!" column.

Vote wisely. It's better to not vote than to make an uninformed vote.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Emma the Arsonist

So last night Emma was mad and in her room so she threw a lamp onto the floor. We found the lamp with a burned out bulb that burned quite a hole in the carpet.

Today she decided to put scissors in the microwave. She successfully started a fire. One fire extinguisher later and we're out a pair of scissors, a microwave, and a toaster. And a fire extinguisher for that matter since it was a one-time use deal.

Kids. *shakes head*

Saturday, November 1, 2008


First of all, thank you Greg and Neighbor for changing my mind regarding Loot Gov and Prop B, respectively. I'll change my votes. That's part of why I posted, to be talked into changing my vote on things that I'm on the fence about.

That said, Halloween was great. The kids had a great time, they got a lot of candy, and best of all Andy wasn't in the PICU this time around!

When the kids went to bed I went downstairs and jammed on the ol' acoustic gee-tar for a bit. Julie and B went down to Julie's sister's for a bit. When they came back they brought Julie's dad who hung out while the kids slept while we went out and played for a bit.

Hey Greg. Do they give out Munchos and Labatt in Kanadia on Halloween?

Andy has a CT scan on Monday. This will be weird.

I left some unfinished bidness at work yesterday so I could leave early. And I hate having unfinished bidness.

The kids have a house full of candy but instead want Cocoa Puffs. I love it.

I really think it's time to bring back our troops so we can use them to invade Kanadia.

That's enough for now. As Brian Boitano would say: By-eee. (cuz that's what Brian Boitano'd do!)