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The Winter Soldier

17 Mar game of thrones, polar vortex, parenting, winter is coming, winter, seasons, climate change, global warming, parenting, children, finances, family, home, lifestyle

My family is the victim of poor planning.

Like everyone else, we participate in the standard holiday season that begins in November and ends in January.Unlike everyone else, we also have a few more holidays thrown into that fall/winter zone. And I.m not talking about All Saints’ Day or Pitchers and Catchers day.

My wife’s birthday is in early November. My son’s birthday is in mid-September and happens to land on the day before our wedding anniversary, and my own birthday hits just a week before that, although, let’s be honest, my birthday is meaningless. Throw in my wife’s beloved Halloween and the Hallmark hell of Valentine’s Day, and from September until mid-February my life is a calendar-choked spending spree of forced romance and legitimately meaningful milestones that leaves me both physically and financially spent.

Like I said, poor planning. And this long winter is just making it worse.

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Parenting and the Olympics: Not That Different

18 Feb Everyone has more energy than you

Raising kids often feels like a contact sport. Or an endurance test. Or both. It’s actually more like 50 different sports all wrapped up in one. In short, it’s like the Olympics.

Maybe it’s not cross-country skiing, and it’s definitely not a biathlon (guns don’t kill people, terrible gun laws allow people to easily kill by other people with guns), but it’s certainly something of a a marathon. It might even be curling, but I don’t understand curling, so we’re sticking with marathon, and maybe some ice dancing (I don’t understand that either).

I’ve never participated in the Olympic games, but I have seen them on TV. A lot. They’re always on. And after years of being a spectator, I’ve come to the conclusion that watching the Olympics is not that different from having kids.

In what ways, you say? Funny you should ask.

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Zombie Post: Jumping Through Rings

12 Feb zombie, walking dead, resurrection, monsters, horror, kids, parenting, funny, dads

Just when you thought it was safe to turn on NBC, the Olympics are back. Again. I swear, ever since they started alternating the Winter and Summer games, it seems like they’re always on, or almost on, or were just on.

They’re fine. Some of the sports are great. If there’s a real story – Michael Phelps, Jeff Gillooly, pink eye – they are a lot of fun. But otherwise they can be a bit tedious, especially two full weeks of them.

But the tedium I feel watching them must be NOTHING compared to what the parents of Olympic athletes have to endure.

The prospect of my son getting so enamored with speed-skating or sprinting or ballroom dancing that he needs me to shepherd him to practices and training and competitions for fifteen straight years fills me with dread. And so the last time the Games were on, I wrote about the agony of raising your kids to be Olympians (despite all the commercials that celebrate it), and I’ve resurrected that post via the link below.

Thanks but no thanks. This is one case where I’d actually prefer a lazy kid.

Original Post: An Olympic-Sized Commitment

Zombie Post: Are You Ready for Some Football… Posts?

2 Feb zombie, walking dead, resurrection, monsters, horror, kids, parenting, funny, dads

It’s Super Bowl Sunday and I’m about to start cooking drinking. Is tomorrow a holiday yet because let’s be serious!

For today’s Zombie post, I was planning to resurrect an old one about why, even though I love watching it, I probably won’t let my kid play organized football. And then I realized that would be was something of a buzzkill on a day like today. So I thought I’d temper that a bit by also bringing back a few other posts I’ve written about the sport. I’m leaving out fantasy football, even though this early one I wrote about skipping my son’s birth to attend my draft is pretty funny.

You can revisit these five undead posts while you’re watching your 17th straight hour of pre-game coverage:

Original Post: Five Ways My Son is Like Ray Lewis
Original Post: Toddlers and Bullies Have a Lot in Common
Original Post: Fanning the Flames
Original Post: Stick to Fantasy, Kid
Original Post: Fantasy Parenting Draft (I lied about the “no fantasy” posts)

Have a great time watching the game! I’m expecting Seattle to win this one, and that’s not just because I considered them my second-favorite team in the 80s, when they had Steve Largent and were still in the AFC.

Let me know your pick in the comments!

Merry Christmas, Dads!

18 Dec parenting, christmas, holidays, shopping, dads, moms, kids, children, Xmas, funny, family, life, lifestyle, football

Whenever I get down about my performance as a dad, all I need to do is take a quick run around the Internet until I find a video like this, and my spirits are immediately lifted.

I’ll bet it’ll have even you semi-decent, borderline-involved dads out there feeling better about your own shitty parenting in no time.

Merry Christmas!

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Fine. I’ll Give Some Thanks.

27 Nov thanksgiving, thanks, holidays, turkey, lists, lenovo, technology, football, NFL, fantasy football, parenting, parenthood, miami dolphins, family, humor, blogging, life, dads, moms, toddlers, kids

I’m not really the thankful type.

That’s not to say I’m not thankful for things, I’m just not the kind of guy that runs around telling people what I’m thankful for and how blessed I am. The good thing about Thanksgiving is that it reins those people in by giving them an entire holiday during which they can babble about their happy lives all day long. Of course, in the online world (i.e., Facebook), it has become the 30 Days of Thankfulness, because why be annoying for one day when you can do it for a whole month?

But if you can’t beat ‘em – like, literally BEAT THEM TO DEATH – join ‘em. So rather than get arrested this November, I’m giving some thanks. Deal with it.

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Fanning the Flames?

23 Oct red sox, yankees, rivalry, sports, fans, baseball, MLB, world series, fall classic, parenting, dads, kids, loyalty, football, NFL, Miami Dolphins, Field of Dreams

Now that I have a car (stupid North Carolina), I find myself listening to the radio more than I have in years. Of course, the radio is terrible. So I throw on sports talk.

Which is also terrible, especially local sports radio. But the national shows, like ESPN’s morning shows and a few others, are tolerable. This morning, I heard Dan Patrick tell a story about how, one day during the 2004 playoffs, some of his son’s classmates – Yankees fans – pissed on the kid’s Red Sox hat.

Suddenly I’ve started questioning the way I’ve been indoctrinating my son into fandom.

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Six Ways Having Kids is Like Not Having Kids

19 Sep mischa barton, sixth sense, parenting, dads, fatherhood, kids, children, lifestyle, moms, motherhood, movies, drinking, funny, home, family

By pure coincidence, I’ve already written two posts this week that have “six” in the title, both uncharacteristically nice (here’s the first one and here’s the second one. I figured I’d make it an even three, and get back to my old self, by potentially summoning the beast with the third “six” in the trilogy.

It makes sense, since this post is really just me playing devil’s advocate. Although I’m a firm believer that having kids doesn’t have to change your life entirely, it definitely does change it. Just not that much. My blog is living (not literally) proof that you can keep your shitty personality and hateful sense of humor when you become a parent; you just have to want to.

I didn’t stop being a sarcastic jerk when my son was born, even though I quite sincerely love him with all my blackened heart. And I didn’t stop drinking, or going out to eat with my wife, or watching the TV shows I like or the sports I love. In many ways – but for the purposes of forming a hilarious Satanic trilogy of my last three posts, in six ways – being a dad is a lot like not being one.

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Concession Stand

11 Sep parenting, children, kids, toddlers, compromise, stress, moms, dads, fatherhood, lifestyle, home, family, funny, humor

Mom and Buried and I spent the weekend enjoying a local music festival. We knew from the start that Detective Munch wouldn’t be accompanying us to the many night-time shows, but – because we wanted him to experience some live music, which he loves – we took some of the daytime events.

On Saturday, we went to the less interesting (read: bluegrass) bands that were playing outside somewhere, rather than inside some dank dive bar my son couldn’t get into. It worked out okay; the kid got to dance and interact with dogs and strangers and we got to have a beer or two while doing our best to prevent our son from getting bit by disgruntled dogs and strangers.

It’s called compromise, and it’s part of being a parent. But on the eve of his third birthday, it’s time for my kid to start holding up his end of the bargain.

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Fantasy Parenting Draft

4 Sep fantasy football ecard

It’s football season! And you know what that means: it’s fantasy football season!

Bore everyone to tears with game recaps! Anger wives and girlfriends by spending too much time doing research! Turn leisurely Sundays into stress-filled angerscapes of regret and frustration. I can’t wait!

I’ve written about my relationship with fantasy football before, even going so far as to consider skipping the birth of my child to attend my draft. That was a choice I didn’t end up having to make, thankfully, and it resulted in one of the best day’s of my life: the day I won it all.

These days, almost everyone in the league has kids, and since everyone with kids wishes they had better kids, I thought I’d imagine what the top picks in a Fantasy Parenting draft would look like. Continue reading