Thursday, June 29, 2006

Bye Bye Boro

10:45 A.M.

The move has begun.

Today, it all goes into the big truck.

Tomorrow, we say goodbye to three years of Murfreesboro living.

I must say, I'm disappointed in my three year old's work ethic. For every dresser drawer I carry, he carries a shirt. But I have to say that he's making more of an effort than his little sister. She hasn't done jack.

5:41 P.M.

Moving always sucks. Today is no exception. Fantastic help from Elder Son and wise MacGyver-like smarts from Beautiful Wife, and still I am getting my rear kicked by the workload before us. Tomorrow should be easier as we will have extra help and we will no longer be facing the Tetris style puzzle of fitting all of our stuff into a truck.

Back to it. More later.

10:52 P.M.

The U-Haul truck ran over me, right? I feel like it did. We accomplished what we wanted to accomplish today. (Wonder if Bush would let us borrow his Mission Accomplished sign?)

Tomorrow should be a bit easier. The physical workload should be the same, but it'll be less about strategy. Less brains, more brawn. I've got that. It's subtle but it's there. Like my bro, I've got a tall and skinny frame that is deceptively strong. Of course, all of this enthusiasm depends on me waking up in the morning able to move. If only to impress pretty girls, I always find a way to lift furniture that I wouldn't even attempt if I was alone. Since my wife has the pretty girl market cornered, I should be able to use that reserve strength to show off all day long.

Hopefully, friends will show up to help. At least today proved that Elder Son and I could carry everything we needed to in a respectable time frame. So even the addition of one or two friends will help a lot, but we'll manage just fine if we find ourselves going it alone. But friends need to note, our new apartment complex has two large pools, a jacuzzi, a sauna, and a workout facility. I look forward to sharing the amenities with friends who help me move. I'm just sayin'.

I'd update tomorrow, but it may be late Saturday before I am online again. The move might be a breeze compared to me going a day without internet access.

My Little Girl, My Butterfly

I had just put my daughter down for her nap. As soon as she sensed what was going on, she began to voice her dissatisfaction. I was lowering her little, fragile body into her crib, signifying naptime. No sooner had her small frame touched the tiny mattress, than she was already working her way to full cry. Always the softy, this is where I usually cave and pick her back up and hold her in my arms. She never succeeds in avoiding a nap altogether, but her protests do help to delay the inevitable.

Today, I would not be the softy. Rules are rules, and naps are naps. She could just cry her little angry wail and like it or not, she would tire herself out and find herself laid out in her crib, green blanket and white burp cloth at her side, sleep prevailing as it always does. Mr. Tough Love would not give in this time. My back to her as I moved toward the door, I knew I was doing the right thing. One more step and I would be at the door frame, winning the little battle played out by sleepy toddlers and their parents all over the world. I took one quick look back toward my angry little butterfly. She was clearing the crib rail like a gymnast her pommel horse.

Her upper body strength had conspired with her absolute refusal to be left alone in that crib and she was doing what I didn't think possible. Like a fish escaping the unrealized safety of its bowl, my little girl was diving to the hard floor away from her soft mattress, blankets, and teddy bears. Of course, everything I am moved as fluidly and quickly as imaginable to catch this most delicate of my cherubs. Turning, closing the distance between us, and reaching out, I grabbed my littlest, my very precious, maybe the slightest frame of time later than perfect. Her head made contact with our carpeted but hard floor. My hands had found her waist and maybe prevented the impact from being harder than it might have been. Nonetheless, the sound of her noggin hitting the floor tore through me with a panic.

Now I was sitting on the floor with her, trying to assess the damage if any. She was crying at a volume unrivaled by past attempts, but it seemed to be more out of fear than pain. She was moving around just fine and I was holding my baby and thinking how lucky we were. After a few minutes of patting her on the back and comforting her, she settled down and stopped crying. I looked back at the offending crib and noted that yes, indeed, there was one more notch left for lowering the mattress. Two days before we take it apart for the move, we'll have to take tools to it to lower it for two more nights of safe sleeping.

For the next 15 minutes or so, I just move about the house, tending to some basic duties, all the while holding Ari close to me; naptime can wait. We've just been through a lot. She deserves to put some time between The Fall and the inevitable nap. After a lot of Daddy kisses, I take her back up to try again, this time in her toddler bed. And I'll stay by her side until she falls asleep. That's the new deal between us.

As she lies on her stomach and I rub her back, I notice a huge mark just above her waist. It's a scratch mark, evidently left by me as I had grabbed her tightly, trying so hard to stop her fall. The room is quiet now. She is awake, but lying peacefully in her bed. I finally take the time to think about things. That mark is the story. It's the love and the fear, all moving at once. It's my happiness that she's fine. It's my tears that I wipe away right now, knowing that she will always be my delicate little girl, no matter what her age. I can't promise that I will always be able to catch her in life, but she can always count on me to hold and comfort her. Always.

Father And Daughter
by Paul Simon
(click to hear)

I believe the light that shines on you
Will shine on you forever
And though I cant guarantee
Theres nothing scary hiding under your bed
I’m gonna stand guard
Like a postcard of a Golden Retriever
And never leave till I leave you
With a sweet dream in your head

Im gonna watch you shine
Gonna watch you grow
Gonna paint a sign
So youll always know
As long as one and one is two
There could never be a father
Who loved his daughter more than I love you

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Matt Costa At Grimey's Today

Be happier than me and go see/hear Matt Costa play in-store at Grimey's this afternoon at 3.

I can't make it but just linked to his myspace page from Grimey's. He's my fave find since Geoff Baker.

And remember, Grimey's is not "indier than thou." They are not High Fidelity. They are friendly, helpful, and know their stuff. They won't judge you for your taste in music. They will thank you for your patronage. And they sum it up here on their website in a response to silly reports (scroll down) to the contrary.

Knuckle Sandwich? You Bet!

In the beautiful words of Warren Zevon, "enjoy every sandwich." No problem.

If time permits, I'll drop by Nashville Knucklehead's Mothership BBQ today for what he's selling.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Open Letter To Friends Of Chez Bez

Moving day is upon us and we need your help. I'd ask my local brother to help but he's moving on the same day. I'd ask my younger sister to help but she's moving on the same day as well. It must be in our blood to move on June 30, 2006.

The inconvenient truth for this household is that we have a lot of stuff to haul and no one with whom to share the rewards of pizza and beer.

Volunteers? We load the truck in Murfreesboro on June 29 and we drive it to our new digs in Hermitage on June 30. Any and all assistance is well appreciated.

The line starts here.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

There's No Crying In Rugby!

A purse used in a fight between two NZ rugby players sold at auction for $14,000. The captain of a team used it to hit one of his players, who promptly burst into tears.

To be fair, they were at a bar. When alcohol is involved, all bets are off.
Chris Masoe plays for the Wellington Hurricanes and has just been selected for the All Blacks squad to face Argentina in June.

Chris Masoe plays for the Wellington Hurricanes and has just been selected for the All Blacks squad to face Argentina in June.
Photo: Chris Lane

Required Reading, In My Opinion

For Hard Times, by pitcherlady

Fifty Cent and the Somalis
by Sam Davidson

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Joshua's First Movie - Cars

Paige and Joshua went to the movies yesterday. In choosing what movie to see, it was decided that Cars would be Joshua's first movie theater experience. While Ari and I loped about the mall, Joshua ate popcorn with his mom and watched a really big cartoon. I'm happy to report that he loved it.

Paige shared that he was well-behaved and quite attentive. He did seem to lose interest at a couple of points ("Mommy, let's go now."), but for the most part he was happy to watch the story. He was the hit of the theatre with one exclamation. He was standing in the row, resting his arms and chin on the empty seat in front of him when the great song "Route 66" started to play. Immediately swaying to the music, he turned to his mom and suggested in something louder than appropriate movie watching voice, "Dance, Momma!" Thankfully, that cracked up those within earshot. If you gotta be loud, at least be funny.

Afterward, I was trying to think of my first movie. I want to say it was Peter Pan at the old Melrose Theatre, but it might have been something a little less classic on the cinematic map. Paige saw Lady and the Tramp when she was a kid, and she remembers all of the details surrounding that first moviegoing experience of hers.

What was your first movie?

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Every Parent's Bedroom Wall

I shared with my dad the wonderful New Yorker piece by Calvin Trillin on his late wife, Alice. After reading it, he emailed his thoughts to me and to others.

Here is the email, published without permission. What's he gonna do, sue me?

Here's a wonderful quote from a "New Yorker" article that Mike gave me...which ought to be framed on every parent's bedroom wall...

The author remembers a ride home from a dinner party at which everyone was discussing the ins-and-outs and pros-and-cons of different "methods" of child-rearing....

His wife looked over at him and said..."Your children are either the center of your life or they're not. All the rest is just commentary."

Meaning: if they're the center of your life, then by definition you're doing the best you can, and they know it, and there's no further issue of "right" or "wrong."

[Edit to add: This post was originally published here back in April, but it seemed appropriate to feature it again today for Father's Day. Of course, both moms and dads kept me in the center of their lives which certainly made it easy for me to be the parent I try to be to my three children. I love and appreciate you all.]

And The Barbecue Was Good

Nashville area barbecue fans need to check out my new favorite restaurant. It's in Berry Hill and it's called Mothership BBQ. The decor is as humble as humble can be but the food is positively and simply sumptious.

For kicks, look around at the album covers that decorate the walls. I am a big time music lover, but these albums didn't register with me at all. I had hardly heard of most of the artists. But then, it wasn't my strongest era represented. The family and I had the large time and will return as often as possible. As it is - almost - on my way to work, I plan to drop in for lunch from time to time.

And the word from the blogs is that I missed out by not checking out the restrooms. Or was it just the ladies' restroom? Either way, I'm glad I was there for the maiden voyage and I look forward to watching Mothership BBQ grow. The word is out. We all like it a lot!

Now go and take a friend. And tell the proprietor that some blogger sent ya.

Mothership BBQ blog

Mothership BBQ

Saturday, June 17, 2006

iPod Or Something Else?

I'm happy to report that in a couple of weeks, this music lover will be able to buy the much coveted item of mp3 player. And now the question is what brand to buy.

Looking at the available iPods, it has been decided that the 30GB is the right size. For only $30 more, the U2 Special Edition is back and quite sharp looking. Still I wonder if iPod is the way to go. Are there equal quality and ease of use players out there at a better bargain?

Feel free to comment and help me make a well educated choice. I'm tired of duct taping a Discman to my arm while I jog.

Parking Cars With The Stones

The longer and more descriptive post may or may not come later. Some stories just won't be forced. But tonight I valet parked a car for a guest and as soon as I turned the key in the ignition, out from the speakers came Mick Jagger's thirty years younger voice singing "Fool To Cry."

And it was the most perfect song for me at that very minute. It took me thirty seconds to park the car and three and a half minutes to listen to the rest of the song. Not that he needs it from me, but the owner of that car - and that CD - just got cooler in my book.

When I come home baby
And Ive been working all night long
I put my daughter on my knee, and she say
Daddy whats wrong?
I put my head on her shoulder
She whispers in my ear so sweet
You know what she says?
Daddy youre a fool to cry
Youre a fool to cry
And it makes me wonder why.

Friday, June 16, 2006


While listening to Nashville Jumps (playlist) today, a radio program dedicated to the music of jump blues, I learned that June 19 is known as Juneteenth. Originated in Galveston, Texas, Juneteenth is a day that celebrates the day in 1865 when slavery was abolished.

Here's more:
Juneteenth website.
Juneteenth in the news.

Listen to the latest stream of Nashville Jumps.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

The Parthenon, Nashville

(Click pics for better detail.)

Centennial Park Images

(All pics clickable for larger sizes.)

My park.

Weekends are for fishing and relaxing.

"I got it."


All good motorcycle riding doggies wear their Doggles.

Cherub's Play-By-Play

Climbing onto the desk with help from Daddy:

"I'm doing it all by myself and you're helping me."

Saturday, June 10, 2006

From The Mouths Of Babes

The two year old is potty training. Going number one is going well. This morning, he came into the computer room and said, "Daddy, I've got to pee." And so, I stopped my important work of reading blogs and walked with him to the bathroom.

He sat up on the toilet and let it flow...and flow...and flow. To this I exclaimed, "Wow, you really have to pee a lot. You must have had a lot to drink this morning."

His reply? "No, Daddy. I don't drink my pee."

Of course not. My mistake. Ahhh, parenting is pretty funny sometimes.

Friday, June 09, 2006

The McNair Factor

Right this minute, I am thinking that it would be quite nice to see the Baltimore Ravens in possession of the Lombardi trophy at the end of the 2006 NFL season.

Ever since watching him put up 336 yards in the 1999 season opener (while being booed by fans, incredulously), I have been a fan of number 9. Before that day, I had marked myself as a fan only of a team and not a player. I knew that players came and went too often for me to put my loyalty to someone who likely wouldn't be on the team for any coming season. And so I was determined to not buy player jerseys, only team specific merchandise. For two seasons, I was true to my words. I watched the Oilers play in Memphis in 1997 and I watched them play in Nashville at Vanderbilt in 1998, and I hardly bothered to learn the names of the players. I rooted for my home team and that was that.

Then, 1999 came. My wife and I took our seats in what was called Adelphia Coliseum at the time. I was in my Titans cap and ready for another fun NFL game. I was ready to watch my team. But on the field that day, Steve McNair was on fire. He threw for over 300 yards and I think three touchdowns. I think his scrambling might have confused many fans, who started booing him as he was playing to catch up with the winning Bengals. All he was doing was putting up yards and points; our struggling defense was the only reason that Cincinnati was winning. And as we found ourselves down by two with about a minute to go in the game, Steve McNair moved the offense up the field, proving wrong his doubters, and got his team in position for a beautiful last second Al Del Greco field goal. With the first game of the season in the books, the Tennessee Titans were 1-0 and on their way to a terrific season, one where we would play in the Super Bowl on the merits of a 13-3 season.

Before the second game of the season, yours truly was wearing a Steve McNair jersey, a fan of a player, going against my game plan. I knew that one day, he'd probably be on another team. It happens all of the time. But there was something about him that was the team. And now he's a Baltimore Raven and the unimaginable has happened. I find myself wishing Brian Billick, the coach of one of our biggest rivals, a spectacular season. The Tennessee Titans are still playing in Nashville, but my team just moved to Baltimore.

Is it football season yet?

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The Bus Uncle Has Pressure!

Yesterday, I read a story about a man in Hong Kong now known as "Bus Uncle."

Here's the video of his public bus behavior on YouTube.

[Edit to add: The Bus Uncle was beaten up by three men who stormed into his workplace and attacked him. The Bus Uncle continues to have pressure.]

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Ain't No Pool Too Small

Summertime / And the living is easy

More evidence of our backyard summertime fun here.

Not The Sharpest Crayon In The Toolbox

While reading up on Diamond Dave news this morning, I came across a recent quote of his. Classic David Lee Roth wordplay wit or etymological headshaker? You decide. (Italicized and in red below)

David Lee Roth Excited Over Van Halen Reunion
(story link)

May 27, 2006 12:01 p.m. EST

Joanna Wypior - All Headline News Staff Reporter

New York, NY (AHN) - Rocker David Lee Roth, who has recently seen his morning radio show axed after unsuccessfully taking over Howard Stern's place, says he is exciting about seeing his own band, Van Halen, once again reuniting with him as the frontman.

In an interview with Billboard, Roth said: "I see it absolutely as an inevitability."

He continued: "To me, it's not rocket surgery. It's very simple to put together. And as far as hurt feelings and water under the dam, like what's-her-name says to what's-her-name at the end of the movie 'Chicago', 'So what? It's showbiz!' So I definitely see it happening."

According to reports, Roth left Van Halen in the mid-1980s and while he recorded two new songs with his former bandmates for a greatest hits package in 1996, that reunion went no further.

Friday, June 02, 2006

It's A Zoo Out There

Guess which exhibit garnered the most attention from the kids.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Two Beautiful Commentaries

One on death and one on barbecue. Both wonderfully written and spoken.

Funeral director Thomas Lynch on death.

Jason Sheehan on barbecue.

Thanks to NPR for these two moving pieces.

We're Off To The Zoo Today!

Here's what I expect:
  • Scorching hot sun, hotter with each and every step
  • All animals, sleeping in the farthest corners of their cages, I mean, living areas
  • Cranky kids at every turn
Thanks. Now, let's have fun!

Turn Where?

Turn Here.

Jackson Miller posted at Metroblogging about a fresh new site called TurnHere. Independent film makers make short videos about the cities where they live and post them to the site. I just watched two great clips about my fair city of Nashville, one about Fernandina Beach in Florida, and another about Mt. Adams in Cincinnati. I am hooked.

It's nice to travel so much from my computer room.