Tuesday, August 28, 2007

False Alarm.

Dirty Laundry had requested a baby update but before I could get one up, she gave us an update of her own in the form of Braxton Hicks contractions and a trip to the hospital for some monitoring. The Wife has never progressed through labor so when she felt the tightening she wasn't completely sure what it was she was feeling. After going back and forth on the phone with our doctor it was decided we should stop by for them to check things out. She, the baby, did not like the monitor resting on her and violently kicked at it the whole time we were there.

Everything is fine and this is perfectly normal. If she had been dilated at all we would have had the baby last night. Currently our C-section is scheduled for Sept. 7th.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Things Fall Apart.

The Storm.

As I'm sure most of you have heard, there was a brutal storm that swept through the Midwest last Thursday. The reason you haven't heard anything from me about it is we have been without power since then.

Lots of trees and power lines down in our yard and neighborhood, luckily none hit our house or garage. Sadly, it looks like the end of this tree. Poor old tree. I used to climb this one as a kid and had some vague hopes of building my own kids a tree house in it.

Another tree an ex next-door neighbor had planted years ago. Time to plant again.

The kids were fascinated by the whole thing. We had accidentally slept through it all and didn't realize what had happened till afterwards. I wonder what impression seeing the destruction and dealing with the lack of electricity for two days will have on them. We all learn eventually that there are powers beyond our parents control. Will this be a point in that development that they look on and realize just how small we are?

Things Fall Apart.

It's been a weird month. The list of things that have broken down around the Hendricks compound reads:
  1. My car.
  2. Our second car, an old used Lincoln we bought from my folks, shocks went out earlier in the week. It's undrivable and we got it towed to my brother's shop. We are down to borrowing my folks car full time. This week we plan to purchase a new van.
  3. Our laundry machine broke early two weeks ago. It took acouple days to get a new one at which time the storm came and we lost power. For a house with six people living in it this becomes a problem very quickly.
  4. We lost everything in our fridge. My precious ice cream.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

I'm Not Feeling It.

Some people get uptight when a book is adapted for the big screen and moments they feel are important are eliminated in the translation.

Some people will argue that records "sound better" than a CD.

Me? I get in a twist when a comic book, or Graphic Novel as the real uptight fanboy might insist, is adapted for film and the filmmakers alter important elements of characters.

In both of these pics from the new Batman film it appears as if the Joker is wearing make-up to create the white skin and green hair. I might be wrong, but...


Do they not understand that the Joker is insane largely because of the permanent change in his appearance? The Joker isn't an alter ego he has created. It isn't his Mr. Hyde. It isn't the Hulk to his Bruce Banner, but a part of him that was always there and that he gladly embraces. The disfigurement is a physical manifestation of who he truly is. Uncureable and unrepentant, he is totally changed. There is no prince hidden beneath the clown, he is wholly the Beast. Chaos. Batmans opposite.

I'm already skeptical.

Thanks to Tankboy for these images.

My Actor Friends

My friend Chauntal got to play Lindsay Lohan in a spoof on Entertainment Tonight. Pretty Silly, but good to see Chauntal getting some work.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Portrait of the Grandpa as a Young Man.

To all our good fortune, born on this day in the backseat of a car in Kentucky.

Weekly To-Do List

  1. Get Philip's doctor/shots records.
  2. Take records to elementary school and register Philip for kindergarten.
  3. Test drive used car. (Possible purchase of two cars this week.)
  4. Continue to prepare the boys room for wallpapering.
  5. Lead cold reading workshop for GreenMan Theatre Troupe. (Miss Bears game. :()
  6. Deposit weekend tips.
  7. TBA
  1. Pay student loan payment.
  2. Get wallpapering started.
  3. TBA
  1. Take Philip to Dentisits appointment, 8 AM.
  2. Schedule Dentist appointment for Patrick.
  3. TBA
  1. TBA
  1. TBA
  2. Arrange sitter for boys.
  3. Work, 5:30 PM.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Not Sure What I Think About This.

The Ballistic Bookbag

Pictured above is a product currently available for children and parents preparing for returning to school soon. It's the Ballistic Backpack and it cost $175. Why the high price tag? It's bulletproof. Made from a lightweight product similar to the vests worn by police and military, it's marketed as practical protection from guns and knifes for everyone, but especially your children. At school.

Since 1999 over 328 incidents have occurred, leaving 229 dead and 422 injured in school violence alone. That is an average of about 1 per week since the Columbine Tragedy. In almost 97% of these documented incidents, MJ Safety Solutions backpack could have provided the ballistic protection that could have saved lives.

I'm not sure I buy their claim of a potential 97% success rate, but I do admit, my first thought is, why not? Why not give your kid a bulletproof back pack? Why, effing-not? I mean, it can be crazy out there. How can I not do my best to protect them?

That isn't my only thought though. Other are: What long-term damage am I doing to myself and my children by succumbing to what is clearly a choice made from paranoia? Most schools, I assume, require you to leave your bag in your locker to help prevent this kind of violence. Likely, it wouldn't be available to protect you.

And when are we going to see people commit crimes with ten of these things hanging off of them. If logic leads criminals to duct tape their faces, their bound to use this soon. Given their high cost, when will they become a target of theft, leading to violence?

Also, when are kids going to start testing the bag themselves with their parents gun, Jackass style?

When are we going to get rid of the guns that make this type of product necessary?

Thursday, August 16, 2007

My Writer Friends.

One of the better friends I made while living out in L.A. was Marissa Giamo. Marissa had bounced around working on various crews in different capacities in New York and L.A. We met in Joe Palese's acting class, worked on some scenes, and grew close. She became a reliable emergency babysitter when Philip was born, and was a source of encouragement in what is a decidedly discouraging city.

As is often the case, we lost touch as she set out on a path back to NYC, and I back to Chicago. She dropped me a line recently to let me know she would be in the city for a wedding and wanted to get together. Cool. But what was even cooler was the success she has had since we last spoke. Marissa has written, illustrated, and managed to get published a children's book called, Spin The Globe Adventures: Australia. See her interview on The Morning Show with Mike & Juliet here.

I haven't read it yet, but I'm looking forward to showing it to the boys.

Congrats, Marissa!

This Is Pretty Funny.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Philip's Fifth Birthday: Lord Of The Flies Edition.

Philip turned five this past Monday. The Sunday before, we had his birthday party. I like throwing parties at home. We had an old school sprinkler party. Well, we didn't have a sprinkler going, but we had a kiddie pool and a slip-n-slide.

The Big Birthday Man.

We had, roughly, thirty people. Aunts, uncles, cousins, neighbors, friends, grandparents. Pizza and hot dogs were served and washed down with plenty of pop.

Water balloon fight.

You'd be amazed at how fast you can pop one hundred water balloons. It turns into a feeding frenzy pretty quick.

Those who choose not to water balloon.

Here you got Grandma, Great Grandma (Nana), Uncles Mort and Mike, plus Megan on the right. She is the creator/baker/fabricator of the SpongeBob cake.

Reverse. Those who choose not to water balloon.

All the redheads are on my wife's side. She's got five sisters. The cousins all love to get together.

Pinata time.

This was an interesting exercise, aside from me catching one tailor made for America's Funniest home Videos, this pinata wasn't meant to be beaten open. There are some fifteen ribbons hanging from the back of the pinata. You are supposed to have each kid pull one, and eventually you yank open a door and the candy comes spilling out. I figured, what the hell, we can beat it open anyway. Not so much. Remember that scene in Parenthood when Steve Martin has to saw a pinata open? Yeah, it was kinda like that. After each kid got about four attempts at it, we switched to pulling the ribbons. That did it. The sugar hit their bloodstream and the party really started rockin'.

More sugar.

Tarzan boy.

Time to open gifts.

Being that Philip is five, he is on the outer edge of the first memories he will have. Those vague images that float around your head from before you can even say. I'm never sure if I actually had the memory, or if some old picture has burned into my brain, fooling me into thinking I was there and remember it. Either way, I think we showed him a good time. I hope he remembers being surrounded by family and friends who love him. People who came to share an important moment with him and a time when all you needed was an inflatable pool, a back yard and some water balloons for a good time.