Feelin' Genki

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Spam Poetry

There's a blog out there I see occasionally called Spamlines dedicated to publishing the most amusing subject lines in the spam we receive.

Today I've finally been motivated to publish a few pieces of "spam poetry" - the little tags of sometimes random, nonsensical text those bastards stick at the end of the spam to fool the filters. These two, collected by my wife at her work address (Ha! I have a Mac! I get about two spam emails a week! Suckers!) were clearly written by a spammer with a gift and not just pasted together out of reference books.

U.T. researchers prove that ballroom dancers refer to themselves as marsupials. Creatures will marry the misers. Usually the piano players would like to spank the air conditioners. Japanese movie monsters search Alta Vista for sites devoted to unwed mothers.

In broad daylight, only insects insist that the shellfish curse the stamp collectors. Didn't you know, the women say, that the mad scientists spit upon slime balls? T.V. doctors are better than swashbucklers. Doctors chatter endlessly about mad scientists.

Anyone else get great stuff like this?

Tuesday, September 27, 2005


Well, Milo has hit another milestone. Yesterday, for the first time, his shirt was soaked from collar to waistline with drool. Yup, his mouth runneth over.

Normally this wouldn't worry me but I know that excessive drooling is sometimes a sign of teething and now I fear for the well-being of his mother's nipples. Considering the fact that he almost ripped his package off the other day (Yikes! What a scream!) I worry about his lack of muscle control. His neck is getting stronger and he can stand if we support him so we know he's a strong boy but now he needs to work on his coordination.

I really need to check with my mom to find out how old my sister and I were when we started getting our baby teeth. And Erin's folks too - they should be back from Indiana next week, I think.

Milo and Erin are off to Parenting class this afternoon - the topic for today is "Adjusting to Parenthood." That reminds me - I need to buy some more beer.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Two Loves in One

Once again, the internet has come through for advertisers and nailed my particular demographic: Mac geek/new parent.

I can just imagine how the Milo Nano will look, thanks to the clever folks at iPod My Baby. I can't wait to see what spinning the click wheel will to to the little fella.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

What Would A Pirate Do?

Hello, Autumn. I refuse to recognize your existence, other than my interest in the astronomical ramifications of the autumnal equinox. Today I am wearing sandals and shorts and I just don't care.

Yesterday, my sweet wife got me a wonderful anniversary present:

A box of pirate band-aids with "Free Treasure Inside!" (a little monkey that goes on the top/eraser of your pencil) and a folder with the eternal question on it: What Would A Pirate Do?

Labelled WWPD, this handy spinner allows you to go about your day more efficiently by speeding up your decision making. For example, I was going to refill my coffee and decided to check with my spinner. A flick of the finger told me that a real pirate would "Guzzle Grog." How much clearer does it have to be!?!

Not one to keep this marvel to myself, drop me a line if you're confused, I'll spin the skull, and tell you WWPD. Meanwhile, the Dread Pirate Robert had better heed the words of Jolly Roger and get that coffee.

P.S. I found this just before dinner:

Robert Emmerson, your pirate name is
Captain Krang the Fearsome Stubble
What is YOUR pirate name?

Monday, September 19, 2005

The Day of Days

Ladies and Gentlemen, today is my day. All over the internet people are swapping their usual "hello" for a hearty "avast, ye scurvy dog!"

It's International Talk Like A Pirate Day! Thanks (I mean, "Arrr.. Ye be a fine matey") to everyone who has chosen to recognise it. Wil Wheaton, my favourite blogger and the unofficial patron saint of my own blog, thoughtfully linked to the Wikipedia entry on the subject, where there are some pirate cliches you can try out for yourselves.

As the Dread Pirate Robert, I wish you well and wish for pieces of eight for all!

Three Tragedies

My last blog is clearly the most boring and useless entry I have written to date. I can only blame it on extreme exhaustion and poor cognitive functioning, which brings me to my gripe for the day.

Is George Bush trying to cover up the number of people who died on his watch? The Martian Anthropologist recently reported that the official body count management and mortuary services duties for the victims of Katrina has been contracted out to a friend of the Bush family when these duties are traditionally done for free by volunteers. Patronage and corruption in the midst of horror. I certainly expect to see the super-rich make billions off the land speculation too.

The thing that really set off alarm bells for me was that Bush and Rumsfeld have already been doing the same thing in Iraq! While the official death toll there is almost 2000 dead soldiers, there are louder and louder reports that the numbers are closer to almost 10,000 deaths and over 24,000 wounded. It seems that if the soldiers die on the way to surgery in Germany or while receiving medical attention, then they just don't count toward the official total. Tell that to the families, you jerk. Hope they impeach you.

Saturday, September 17, 2005


New Milo photos are up at last. The latest batch is here but, as always, you can find the complete selection at the Milo Photos link on the right.

Man, I 'm beat. I spent the morning working at the farmers' market selling organic fruits and veggies. Looks like I'm having salad for dinner for the next few days. The weather was cloudy but it looks like the sun is coming out. Time to go walk the dog.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Taotl Fraliue

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid Aoccdrnig to rscheearch taem at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

The above piece is circulating in emails and on several websites - I thought I would post it here because it is similar to another piece we read in my education program. We were discussing early literacy and our professor put a similar one on the board. Here it is:

Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at an Elingsh uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht frist and lsat ltteer is at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae we do not raed ervey lteter by it slef but the wrod as a wlohe.


We found that most people (adults) could read it aloud at almost the same speed they read a properly spelled version. Amazing what the mind can do.

Also amazing (or amazingly funny) is if you type failure into a google search field and hit I'm Feeling Lucky. Somebody knows how to manipulate a search engine.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Grama and Poppa

Three cheers for grandparents! My parents were here this weekend and were more than happy to hold and play with Milo. In fact, I barely held him at all. Photos should be up in a couple of days, if I get my job-hunting chores done first.

Dad brought his truck to the big car show in Langley, and is pictured here showing off his award to Milo.

We also got to see my Nana, so we finally have a photo of four generations of Emmersons in one room. Her little Chihuahua, Sarah, was either really interested in Milo, or a little jealous. Sarah made Milo look huge!

Vancouver Weather

Rain? Sun? Cloud? Wind? Not today. As I sleepily watched Milo breastfeeding (I get to see my beautiful little boy AND my wife's beautiful breasts! Score!) and we listened to the weather forecast, the announcer said, and I quote, "Smoke, with a high of twenty."

Burns Bog is on fire.

4000 hectares of domed peat bog - the largest in North America - and that stuff burns, too. We're at the top of a hill, so it's not too bad, but I could sure smell it when I walked the dog this morning and see it hanging everywhere. Great, now Vancouver can steal a line from Get Shorty: "They say the smog is the reason we have such beautiful sunsets."

Saturday, September 10, 2005


In my links section, I have added my favourite news blog. I love all of Oliver Sacks' books of case studies of people with exceptionalities, neurological disorders, and autism. An Anthropologist on Mars, one such book, is titled after they way one patient describes how they see the world in a state of uncomprehending detachment.
With a similar perspective, The Martian Anthropologist has a keen eye for news that is undercovered by the right-wing corporate media and humour that makes you weep. For an example of the former, Halliburton has been awarded a half-billion dollar Katrina rebuilding contract. And they get to underpay the workers while maximizing profits. Thanks, George. As for the humour, check out this Dear Red States Letter.
Oh, and I can't say this without also saying that I hope they Impeach George Bush. Apparently lots of people want to.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Shots, Not The Tequila Kind

Well, all things considered, I think I got more freaked out by the whole thing than he did. Milo cried four times, for about ten seconds each time, as the nurse squeezed the freakily-long syringes into his chubby little thigh. Man, it was hard to watch. Then she made me help hold his little leg down. Dr. M., you were a wise doctor to make someone else do it. Maybe Milo will look forward to visiting you, and just dread the Community Health nurse.

Two more months, then the whole thing over again. By the time he hits one year old, Milo will have been immunized against Diptheria, Pertussis, Tetanus, Polio, Haemophilus Influenzae type B, Hepatitis B, Measles, Mumps, and Rubella in twenty-one separate injections. Then eight more when he turns two and that's it, until four more before he starts school. That's a lot of needles that I don't really want to see.

Put The Baby To Work

Oh yes, I want one of these...

In fact, I would get hardwood floors just so we could use it. Then I want one to fit me. I don't suppose they make them in a 6'5" man size...

While we're on the subject of weird stuff, this is the weirdest I've seen today: Hufu. The tofu that tastes like human flesh. If you go to the Hufu website they call it the "healthy human flesh alternative." I especially like the "dinner and a movie" suggestions: Soylent Green, Shaun of the Dead, Sweeney Todd, Alive....
Now all we need is a few links to a nice Chianti.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Why I Oughta...

"One of these days... Pow! Right to the moon!"
-Ralph Kramden

Well, I never. Apparently my beautiful, charming, talented wife is in a snit. Well, that's what she gets for being a good writer. Her recent post on The Diaper Pail writes that I am "stealing all [her] blog ideas."

Um, hello!? You can't just count the topics of our son and his life as your own "blog ideas". Am I to expect a "But I was going to write about baby poop!" (I hear a kind of Wendy Whiner voice in my head...) in the near future? Would you like me to write about the finer points of cloth diapering tomorrow,? Because I'll do it, just try me.

Perhaps you should stop reading Metacritic reviews of movies that we won't be able to see until they come out on video anyway. (Yes, life with a newborn isn't exactly jet-setting.) Just to show you the sacrifices I've been making, I haven't played Diablo II for, oh, at least three days now. And there are new Homestar Runner cartoons up that I haven't even seen.

Or you could just do what I do, and not write rough copies of your blog posts or edit your material before just posting it for the world to see. Ha ha! Ten minutes, people, that's how long I've been writing this quantity-over-quality stream-of-consciousness kind of thing. I know because my coffee is almost cold.

So there, Sweetie. Consider yourself rebutted. Now, I shall go and wash a load of dirty diapers and do the dishes. Then, and only then, will I get some more coffee. And play some Diablo.

Trip to the Doctor

Today we took Milo to the doctor's office to get him weighed and check him out. He now weighs 5.7kg, or 12lbs 8oz, which is almost a pound heavier than two weeks ago. You go, Milo! Keep on slurpin'! This picture is him good and milk-drunk. Man, there are some powerful hormones in that stuff...

Now, we're dreading the four shots he needs to get in about two hours. Hep B, Pneumococcal, Meningococcal, and Diptheria/Pertussis/Tetanus/Polio/Hib. Whew. I don't expect him to be happy about it but hey, that's why our family doctor is sending us to the Community Health Nurse to do it and I don't blame him. I wouldn't want to be the bad guy either. I'll let you know how the nurse feels about it.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Alphabetical Order

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart returned last night after a nice vacation.

I particularly enjoyed the list of Major Failures of the Bush administration, categorized alphabetically for your convenience.

Although I liked seeing Voldemort's name up there, it was the Rodents Of Unusual Size that truly touched my heart. Both the ROUS and the Dread Pirate Robert (Roberts, actually, but that's not my name) come from The Princess Bride, an excellent movie.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005


Tuesday morning and everyone is back to work. Except me. I haven't heard from any school boards yet and I hate waiting to see if they liked my resume or not. I'm just going to keep sending them further and further afield so I feel like I'm doing something. Although honestly, I don't think I can work in Abbotsford or Chilliwack since they're about an hour and a half away and my car is a mid-70's V8. Not good when gas is $1.20 a litre.

More importantly, The Diaper Dame has updated her wonderfully witty and entertaining blog, "The Diaper Pail," and has included pictures of our cutie pie. Tell all your friends and be sure to pop by.

On the right hand side of this page are some links. Today I'll just mention the first three. Pictures of Milo at my .mac homepage - this is where they all are. If you look at the slideshow to make them big, then right-click and save them, you can have your own copies. If that doesn't work and you really want them, let me know and I'll burn them onto a CD for you (Mom). The other two pages, Flickr and Fotolog, both predate this blog and have many of the same pics. The big problem, as mentioned last time, is that the flash on my camera has stopped flashing. I know the yawn (in the photo above) makes this look late at night, but it was actually about 11:30am. At least the pics still come out okay when I have the flash off, which I prefer anyway.

Oh yeah, I should let you know that I removed the "Milo Wiggles" movie - too darn big and for those with dialup, it took way too long to load the Site Menu. I'll show it to you when you come visit. Bring pie or beer.

Time to get to work. It's sunny now with highs of 28 predicted for today so maybe I'll get to decapitate some dandelions before the neighbours start giving me dirty looks. But first, coffee. Aahhh...

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Hooray! He Smiles!

Everyone seems to comment on how serious and thoughtful Milo looks. I think he's just stunned by the shiny newness of everything. However, he hasn't smiled that much - until recently. Suddenly, he loves being on the change table! And I've caught a few blurry smiles on the camera!

Of course, I take the scattergun approach to Milo photos. My camera can hold 306 photos, which is way more than the battery can manage. On the other hand, since the flash seems to have quit working, maybe the battery will last longer. Sigh. Yes, my camera seems to be broken. I suppose that bodes ill for my Flickr and Fotolog pages. Even worse, all Milo pics will have to be outside.

This being Vancouver, it's raining right now. Time to turn on Creation Steppin' Radio, pour myself a coffee, and play some Diablo II before the boy wakes up.

The Weakest Link

Wow. For the past few days, like everyone else, I've been reading blogs and news stories about New Orleans and Katrina. Yikes. The first lesson I've learned is that there are hundreds of people better-informed than I am writing well-researched and thought-provoking stories. There are also hundreds of ignorant people spouting drivel. As someone new to the blogosphere I've been finding that the mainstream media is too slow, too biased, and too worried about offending their Republican supporters to do their jobs. The only source I still read (now that CBC is on strike and Ctrl+V-ing stories straight from the wire) is Salon. Blog links, open discussions, and mostly relevant information. And it doesn't make me want to throw a rock at my TV like Fox or CNN.

So the point is that on this blog, I will not be trying to break news or come up with a fresh take on events, but will stick to my own perspective and feelings. That being said, we all see a big problem down there. Bush cut funding for hurricane and flood preparedness by 44%. There was no evacuation plan in the event of a flood and the plan called for ALL displaced persons to wait it out at the Superdome until the waters receded. And there are people justifying the President's actions by saying "We are at war." My question today is "How long has the U.S. been at war?" Is it since 9/11? What about the War on Drugs? Bush Sr. and Reagan said "we are at war" then too. And the Cold War, don't forget that. (Hmm... the war on drugs started about the same time the cold war ended. Convenient.) I guess the answer is since 1941. Hey, if it worked for the economy in the forties and fifties, why mess with a good thing?

Herman Goring explained how people are manipulated into going to war when they don't really want to. "Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and for exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country." Surf the right-wing blogs for a few minutes, or read a few presidential speeches and maybe you'll be as freaked out as I am. “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” Sinclair Lewis (the author of the previous quote) wrote a novel describing how it might happen and some symptoms: extreme nationalism (you're either with us or against us), the disdain of human rights, unprecedented secrecy, military supremacy over domestic needs, fraudulent elections, suppression of labor power and the protection and strengthening of corporate power, using religion to manipulate public opinion, controlled mass media, the use of torture, hatred of intellectuals and the list goes on. I hope you find this as creepy as I do.

Theodore Roosevelt, speaking before the heyday of partisan politics, said "To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." I guess there are plenty of traitors these days.

Anyway, if you believe that our society should be judged based on how we treat the least of us, or that a chain is only as strong as it's weakest link, or any of that story about the Samaritan in the book of Luke, then we're all in a bad way.

Whew. Glad that's out of my system. Next post, no politics.