Five Easy Pieces

December 31, 2007

Happy New Year…

Filed under: Family,Movies,Sports,TV — danletscher @ 2:40 pm

What started out this year as a fast and furious blogging experience has definitely become a trickle.  Here’s some bits of what’s been happnin’:

(1) Watched Eastern Promises a few nights ago.  Definitely worth a look.  brutal, savage, bloody – all good Cronenbergian adjectives fit this one.  Except “surreal”.  The Ukranian accents can be a bit thick to penetrate at times but the story moves along at a nice pace and the steam room brawl is (literally) balls out intense. 

(2) Ratatouille is a great flick as well.  The adults watched it Christmas night after the kids were all tucked in (they watched it earlier that day).  Good laughs and incredible animation again from Pixar.  Our family snuggled up last night in the king-size bed for a repeat viewing.  We’ll be watching plenty more I suppose.

(3) Waitress was a delightfully simple film.  Simple premise, simple characters and you have a simple smile on your face the whole time.  I just got another film from writer/director Adrien Shelly, “I’ll Take You There”, looking forward to it.  The tragedy of Shelly’s death is not one to ignore – her talent was apparent to all in the industry and Waitress would have propelled her to national identity.

(4) I wasted my time with Live Free or Die Hard.  The first hour was somewhat worthy of the concept but the latter half turned into complete crap.  After the movie ended (at 11pm) I immediately got out the original Die Hard DVD and watched it.  Nothing better to get that acrid taste of the previous film out of my system.

(5) Talk to Me is worth a watch.  Don Cheadle does a great job as the jive-talking 70’s era Washington DC DJ, Dewey Peters.  I knew nothing of this man and was impressed with the impact he had on the city and the races.  The movie is funny as hell and Cheadle owns the whole thing.

(6) I only watched The Office on TV this year until the writer’s strike over.  My favorite from last year, Heroes, was unwatchable crap for the first four weeks so I gave up on it.  I’m going to watch the first season again on DVD with my wife (she missed it) to make me feel better.

(7) Haven’t been reading too many books lately – although I just picked up Clive Barker’s new one (about time!).

(8) Xavier Bball is in full force with their toughest non-conference sked ever.  Good wins vs. Indiana, Kent State, Creighton, UC.  Tough losses vs. Miami, Tennessee and ASU.  Next three games will tell a lot about our January – KSU, Virginia, Auburn.  Three BCS schools in one week.  Then the conference starts and the A-10 is loaded after a lot of down years.  Dayton and Rhode Island are ranked, UMASS is knockin’ on the door.  Brutal year ahead.

(9) We have been non-stop since Halloween.  Kids turned 6 and 3 in November, I turned 37(!) in December, Christmas parties, holiday travels and now New Year’s Eve tonight.  2008 can’t come soon enough.

March 6, 2007

What about family?

Filed under: Family — danletscher @ 3:29 pm

Yes, there has been a lot of posts about movies and sports (and finally, TV) but what about family and home? I’d love to post a bunch of pictures of my kids because I think they are beautiful and funny and it would be neat to show everyone. Then I think about privacy and the thought of some random pervert finding a picture of my 2-year-old daughter. But there are things I can post that others can relate to because my wife and I had kids before most of my friends and all of hers. We’ve been through the same shit (literally) they are experiencing: unpredictability, tantrums, scheduling mayhem, sleepless nights, more than two bodies in our bed, ear infections, etc. Thankfully, there is also snuggling, giggling, tickling, playing dress up, coloring ,catch, legos, puzzles, lots of reading and movie nights.

Having one child was not so bad. Yeah, the sleep thing at the beginning was a bear. I gladly took a lot of night feedings though because I could watch a heck of a lot of movies I otherwise wouldn’t have time for. The eating issues come and go but a child will never starve itself, so don’t go crazy over it (but we still do). Now, a few of our friends have had their second child in the last year. Life is a whole lot different with two. The biggest change? There really never is a “break.” Remember when there was just one warm bundle of burps and shits? You could hand that off to one another, take a shower, sit down and eat or read or nap or watch TV or…could it be…leave the house alone and run an errand? (usually when there wasn’t one, but you could leave!) That’s all over. If you don’t have one to take care of, you have the other.

You have the jealousy factor to deal with also; the older child will no doubt feel threatened and your time together compromised by the new addition. Until my daughter Camille was older than 18 months, I didn’t think my son Mason would ever want to be with her. He insisted he was going to throw in her in the garbage for the first few months of her life. And of course she didn’t replicate his outstanding sleeping habits at an early age so I thought about the garbage thing a few times myself. Why is it that everyone was right about the second being so different from the first. I had hoped we would buck that trend but…she is still my little angel. She is officially “princessive-compulsive” and must have daily readings of Cinderella and “Seeping Booty” – whoa, that second one sounds kind of nasty now that I wrote it out!

When the two began to actually interact was, as the cliche goes, a blessing and a curse. Their interaction began to blossom more after Camille walked and developed her motor functions better. They’d occupy each other just long enough for one to get pissed about something and start it up. It may have been about wanting the same thing or playing too close to each other. They always found something to make an issue between them. As she has gotten older and her speech is increasing every day, they have gotten even better at playing together. And she can now repeat all the lovely poopy and peepee talk every five-year-old boy loves to toss around.

So that’s an introductory glimpse into our family dynamic. We benefited from the advice of others when we had our kids and we try to do the same for others. And we never sugarcoat it, so you won’t hear the “it’s so wonderful”, rose-colored viewpoint that attempts to hide the inner workings of raising a family. It IS wonderful, it IS hard work and it’s worth every drop of blood, sweat and tears.

**Two of our friends are now expecting their third child! I got nothing on that except to say “y’all crazy.”**

February 28, 2007

What’s the Doggie Porn in the right hand corner?

Filed under: Family — danletscher @ 11:44 am

I have gotten this question a couple of times since launching the blog. Here’s the reason: It’s funny. OK, it’s not just that, there is a story behind it:

We used to have 3 dogs – Cortez (male husky, named after Neil Young’s “Cortez the Killer”), McKinley (female husky, named after Mt. McKinley – never been there but it’s in Alaska and she’s a husky) and Kashmir (female Briard, named after the Led Zeppelin song). McKinley looked exactly like the husky in the picture to the right. And she liked to hump the other two dogs to try to establish some sort of dominance, but she was the smallest of the three and they thought it was a joke. Cortez felt some sort of threat and would get pissy and buck her off. Kashmir, on the other hand, knew McKinley was no threat and would simply stand there and let her go at it. It was endless entertainment – Kash would even walk around and McKinley would hold on and hop along with her, maintaining her thrusting. (I am giggling just writing this – more insight into my sense of humor, I guess!) We had plenty of witnesses to this over the years and lots of laughs. Since McKinley and Kash were both “bitches”, my wife and I always said we had the best girl-on-girl action in the city! The image you see is a random photo our friend found and forwarded to us because of the uncanny resemblance to McKinley and the familiar pose the dog has! I’ll look for an actual “McKinley in action” picture in our archives – I’m sure you’re all dying to see the real deal.

Cortez and McKinley are no longer our dogs – he was adopted by someone in a neighboring city and McKinley now spends her days romping around Athens County, OH farmlands. Good for her, she needed the wide open spaces. We still have Kashmir and are happy with the two humans (our kids) and one dog lifestyle. The three dog thing was a bit much.

I’ll probably change the picture in that corner over the life of this blog but for now, that porno doggie just makes me giggle.

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