end of the season… finally!

kidbits No Comments »

end it already!!! for the love of pete, end it!!

yes, the time finally arrived. the end of the fall soccer season. the nine year old’s team lost again of course. but the funny thing is that i think the kid learned more this season than any other in the past. not sure if it’s the coach, or the team filled with not so great players or timing or a combination of all of these. but i guess even with the team losing all but one game, my son learning better technique and gaining confidence in his abilities are big *positives* in any book. the other positive i witnessed saturday was when the nine year old played goalie during the second half of the game. i was all ready to cover my eyes for the remainder of the half but to my surprise the kid actually went after the ball and blocked the majority of the shots that came his way. my mouth was ajar in amazement. i’ve seen this kid play goalie in the past where he didn’t keep focus on where the ball was at key moments and let easy shots go right by him but now he was on fire. he was no longer afraid of the ball and was all ready to keep the ball from getting into the goal. wow. now, that’s my boy! :)


congrats boys! and better luck next season!!


miscellaneous No Comments »

now that the wife and i have entered *ahem* middle-age, it is that much more vital for us to take care of ourselves, watch what we eat and exercise. along with a healthy diet and various physical activities, we’ve been looking into vitamins and healthy nutritional supplements to aid in the fight to keep our bodies as young and in shape as possible. N101 Nutrition is an online retailer that specializes in vitamins, supplements and other health products. they have a great selection and the site is easy to navigate and very informative as well. ingredient information, supplement facts, suggested uses and warnings are all documented for each item on the site. they also offer a rewards program so that their customers can earn points toward discounts and free products. prices are very competitive and volume discounts are also available. be sure to check out their website for more information.

Feast One Hundred & Seventeen

miscellaneous 1 Comment »

MEME: Friday’s Feast

Create a new candle scent.
i’m not sure if this already exists but how about “new car smell”.

Name one way you show affection to others.
by ignoring them and be all grumpy.

What is your favorite writing instrument?
definitely the computer. i’ve got bad handwriting.

Main Course
If you were given $25 to spend anywhere online, from which site would you buy?
probably amazon since they’ve got a bit of everything. the last i heard, they now offer groceries and auto parts.

Are you dressing up for Halloween? If so, what are you going to be?
nope. but the kids will be out and about.

the world’s largest plane

miscellaneous 1 Comment »

honey, round up the kids. the world’s largest aircraft (the Antonov An-225) will be landing at our local airport tomorrow morning. The plane is 275 feet long and a wingspan of 290 feet. watching that behemoth land will be a sight to behold. apparently it’s here to take a 120 ton, 22.8 megawatt power generator to Tanzania. click here for the news article from the N&O.

for more information on the aircraft, check out wikipedia.

Gideon Tuba Warrior

miscellaneous No Comments »

hello. i’m your friendly neighborhood veggietales ambassador here to let you know about the new veggietales video coming out in early november. It’s called Gideon: Tuba Warrior in which Larry the Cucumber is chosen to defend his people against an army of over 30,000 excessively hairy and malevolent pickles. the video is hosted by the Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything who are plugging their upcoming movie and also features a new silly song by Bob the tomato.

click on “read more” to view the video trailer…

you can also view it here.

dreams of spain

the bin No Comments »

i’ve been listening to some Mike Oldfield lately. some of his later work is a stark contrast to what he sounded like starting out. it’s a very interesting progression through his musical career. he mentioned in various interviews how living in Ibiza influenced the sound of his songs. since Ibiza is famous for the Balearic Beat (a type of trance music) i can see the connection. man, can you imagine owning property in Spain, living the high life out on the Mediterranean? that would be the life. and i can definitely see how the lifestyle would permeate into one’s work. the big summer parties, the majestic views, the wonderful weather and viewing the glorious sunset at Café del Mar. ahh, what a dream

pork fat anyone?

food No Comments »

i recently participated in a twinkie eating contest. i didn’t know about it until the last minute so i didn’t train for it or anything. so as you might expect, i didn’t do so hot. gulping down twinkies is one thing but can you imagine being in a contest where you have to eat more than 2 pounds of pork fat in twenty minutes? well 51 year old Volodymr Stryhaniv did just that and is now crowned Salo King. i’m all about barbeque pork and all but slabs of pork underskin fat (which is what Ukrainians call Salo) don’t sound like something that i’d like. especially 2 pounds of it. for more info on salo, check out wikipedia.

youtube fun: kasim takes a spill..

music No Comments »

ahh, the endless wonders of youtube. a todd fan recently uploaded a rare video clip from Todd Rundgren’s Power Trio Tour back in 2000 where bassist Kasim Sulton falls and breaks his foot. ouch! at the end of the video clip, there’s a slo-mo replay of Kasim falling in a different camera angle. the video was edited from multiple cameras so i wonder if there’s a DVD (bootleg, i presume) of the whole show somewhere? this would definitely be of interest since the official DVD of this tour was captured at a different show altogether.

soccer season coming to a close…

kidbits No Comments »

OK, saturday morning was a bit too cold and wet for soccer. at least for *this* ol’ man. and for our five year old, it’s the last soccer saturday for the season. he has definitely enjoyed it a lot more this season. he’s running a whole lot better and paying attention to where the action is. i’m very proud of the lil’ five year old. oh and get this, his coach *finally*, after all this time of snickering and whispering about his horrendous comb-over, got his *hair cut*. he almost looks normal now. *almost*. heh.

as for our nine year old. his team lost again. the wife and i can’t wait for the season to end so that the team could be put out of its misery. again, we’re thankful that the nine year old has improved in his skills but man, it would have been a whole lot more enjoyable if the kids could win some of their games!!

from the music vault: squeeze

the bin No Comments »

deep from the depths of my very own music vault comes an old relic from the eighties.  the CD-3 single.   i still have several of these around.  today’s feature is by none other than the phenomenal band Squeeze

I spent too much money looked far too glad
Now I have so little of what I once had
I had too many parties I had too much time
I got so lazy and fell well behind

Now the summer is over I can count the cost
Footprints on the beaches are now
Footprints in the frost
The summer is over I can count the cost
Footprints on the beaches are now
Footprints in the frost

We did so much damage deep in our insides
The party’s over, it’s going home time
The cathedral is empty, no one’s at home
Winter’s approaching; paradise postponed

Now the summer is over I can count the cost
Footprints on the beaches are now
Footprints in the frost
Rain won’t stop falling and the people look lost
Footprints on the beaches are now
Footprints in the frost

I rang lots of numbers and walked many miles
I watched the Flintstones and I turned my dial
To a brand new station where the beat comes in
Now it’s all over, the winter begins

The summer is over I can count the cost
Footprints on the beaches are now
Footprints in the frost
People with umbrellas disappear in the fog
Footprints on the beaches are now
Footprints in the frost
-Footprints written by Difford and Tilbrook

click on read more to listen to a couple of the tracks off the CD-3

footprints (mp3) by Squeeze

Take Me I’m yours live version (mp3) by Squeeze

computer shopper mag link

internet buzz No Comments »

for those that didn’t catch it the first time, here it is again. it’s an opportunity to get a year subscription to computer shopper for free. just head on over to freebizmag and see if you qualify. the magazine will keep you up to date on the latest in computer hardware, software and gadgets.

Lindsey Buckingham

music No Comments »

here’s a neat Lindsey Buckingham video titled PBS Interstitial found on youtube. there are some great tidbits about his latest album, Under The Skin and his currently solo tour.

i probably sound like a broken record but the man is a musical genius, a wonder on guitar and a studio wizard. it’s a bit sad that it took this long to follow up his last solo album (a classic by the way) which was released back in ‘92. the good news is that he’s planning on releasing another album in a year or two. …. or so he says…. we will see…

casino night

miscellaneous No Comments »

i recently learned that the theme of our upcoming office christmas party will be “casino night”. yes, it’s very unoriginal and probably a reference to last season’s finale of NBC’s the Office. yup, way obvious.  anyway, i’m still trying to decide if i should go or not. it’ll be after hours, held at a hotel, cash bar, dress code… you know, it sounds like the organizers are going all out for this year’s party. since it’ll be “casino night” i might have to bone up on all the poker rules before i go. i don’t play it regularly so i got to read up on the different types like Texas Hold ‘em, 5 card stud ..and oh yeah, celebrity poker :P. thanks to the internets and sites like these, I have access to tips, detailed explanations and strategies galore. hhhmmm, maybe this “casino night” isn’t a bad idea after all…

don’t tell the kids!!

miscellaneous No Comments »

OK, don’t tell the kids this but according to the Federation of American Scientists, video games can actually be good for kids!  can you believe it?  they theorize that video games can help develop kids in the following areas: analytical thinking, team building, multitasking and problem solving under duress.  of course further research needs to be done in this field but the group of scientists believe that there can be a way to harness the good aspects of video games and incorporate them into various teaching methods in school.  the entire news article can be read here.

and for archiving purposes, i posted the text of the article after the jump.  (click read more).

Video Games Good For Kids? Study Says Yes

WASHINGTON — Video games, often viewed by parents and teachers as the enemy of learning, may be good for kids after all.The speed, color and action of the small screen can be harnessed for education, given enough investment in research. And that’s not the conclusion of some band of slackers.It comes from the Federation of American Scientists, a body that normally deals with weighty issues such as nuclear weapons proliferation.On Tuesday, the group called for federal research into how the addictive pizazz of video games can be converted into serious learning tools for schools.

The theory is that games teach skills that employers want: analytical thinking, team building, multitasking and problem solving under duress.

Unlike humans, the games never lose patience. And they are second nature to many kids.The idea might stun those who consider games to be the symbol of teenage sloth.Yet this is not about virtual football or skateboarding. Games would have to be created and evaluated with the goal of raising achievement, said federation president Henry Kelly.

There’s already an audience; more than 45 million homes have video-game consoles.

“If we can’t make the connection, shame on us,” Kelly said at a news conference.

What’s needed, he said, is research into which features of games are most important for learning - and how to test students on the skills they learn in games. The departments of education and labor and the National Science Foundation would lead the way under this plan.

“This is an investment that the private industry simply is not capable of taking,” said Kelly, a former White House science and technology leader during the Clinton administration.

“This is the kind of thing where the federal government has always acted in the past, to underwrite basic research that you need to drive an important movement forward,” he said.

Getting costly research about games on the federal agenda is just one obstacle.There are plenty of others. Schools, colleges and universities are a fractured market. They make their own buying decisions, and are likely to be dubious about the value of games. The gaming industry has already figured out that educational games don’t make money in the consumer marketplace. The new approach would instead market them directly to schools.

Doug Lowenstein, president of the Entertainment Software Association, said there will soon be 75 million Americans who are 10 to 30 years old — an age bracket that grew up on video games.

It’s good to hear a respected group say that video games are not a blight on society, said Lowenstein, whose group represents U.S. makers of video games.

“Common sense tells us that a medium so basic to the lives of these ‘millennials’ has potential beyond the living room,” Lowenstein said. “We would be crazy not to seek ways to exploit interactive games to teach our children.”  The potential is enormous, agreed Don Blake, a technology analyst for the National Education Association, which represents teachers and other classroom professionals.

But when he thought about how games would work in class, questions kept popping to mind. How much training would teachers receive? Who would persuade school leaders and the public that games aren’t a waste of time? Would education schools add serious gaming to the curriculum?

Ultimately, he said, teachers need to see games as a way to help — not as a threat.


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