instant gramming

November 24, 2009

play inspiration

this tee-pee idea comes from a dad blog, Pacing the Panic Room, that I started following when his wife was around 25 weeks pregnant. Check out the maternity series -- really rad photo documentation of the belly-growing process. I hope to build super cool things like this for our baby, despite the fact that currently she likes to hide from me when I try to feel her kicking. she'll learn to like me, I know it

fun with music

this has me excited about the endless creativity, curiosity, and energy of young kids

Think I Got A Beat - Hi-tek

November 22, 2009

20 weeks

Today marks the beginning of the 20th week of C's pregnancy. I can't believe we are (she is) this far along. She did remind me that we were clueless for the first month--but 16 weeks has cruised. 20 more weeks seems like an eternity and a blink at the same time.

C had asked that I organize something special for today, and I failed, unsurprisingly. I'm not good at it. I honestly put some thought into it: get a hotel for a weekend getaway--something of which I couldn't see us taking much advantage... that's pretty much where I stopped. I am really good at knowing what she doesn't like, but come up short when it comes to knowing what she does want. We ended up going to Cleveland to visit C's family, which we had sort of been planning in light of Thanksgiving with my family next week, and it was a really good time, as usual. Papa is in a rehab center, so we've been anxious to pay him and Nanny a visit. C's mom cooked us a pre-Thanksgiving meal last night and it was awesome.

So, after getting home, we did some chores around the house, and a clean house always makes us both feel good.  I did convince her to let me pick up some food from a restaurant downtown she really likes, and stopped to pick up a bouquet of small hot-pink roses from the grocery store. 20-freakin-weeks! It deserves a lot more celebration than what I managed to pull together.

I wish I didn't suck so much at being romantic and surprising and whatever. There's no excuse, I am just bad at it.
(P.S. Coincidentally, today is also Alden's 2nd birthday!)

November 20, 2009

sex vs gender

The other night I was out with 2 co-workers and they were asking about how the pregnancy was going. I mentioned we had hoped to have an ultrasound "to find out the gender of the baby" then quickly corrected myself to say "the sex of the baby." They both looked at me, sort of dumbfounded that I would replace "gender" with "sex" saying "they mean the same thing."

I am not well versed on the subject, but to me, the word "sex" refers to genitalia; and as I understand it "gender" is a social construct that polarizes "male" (or masculine) and "female" (or feminine).

Now, I'm not trying to get too semantically deep.  A lot of time I want to be a manly man that is masculine. But a lot of times I feel insecure or whatever because I'm not so much. I'm sensitive, and I cry, and I can sew, and don't know half the rules of football, and hate baseball, and so on and so forth...

Anyways, for our baby I'm aiming to stress gender-neutrality to a certain degree. I don't have a problem with having a boy that gets obsessed with football or a girl that likes pink, or vice versa.

I've not done much to research any prevailing thought or philosophies or insights or the like, but feel pretty confident that what I think makes sense...


November 18, 2009

Skateboarding, Biking

I'm sure I've said something similar before, but I just realized:

I feel about bikes now as I felt about skateboarding in junior high.

I riffle through bike blogs, virtual page after page, from my office, like I did with skateboard magazines at school--trying to wring out every drop of information about the style, the culture, the best tips, the top gear.

I admire pictures of bikes like I had ogled over skateboard deck graphics from the latest CCS catalog.

I envy the commuters, tourers, messengers, and freestylers artfully photographed alone in a crowded city street; in a pack climbing a curvy mountain road drenched in the light of the rising sun...

I live vicariously through the stories and articles and epic photographic essays from behind my desk, both then and now, waiting, impatiently, to get back on the wheels that allow me to connect to my surroundings, but also brake free from the alternatives that are so pedestrian...

November 16, 2009

Earth to baby

I just tried making contact with the baby. Without a clever bone in my body, I said a few boring things into C's belly, then laid my head on it with both of my hands pressed into the rest of the available space on her skin. I kissed it then informed C that the baby was sleeping.

Apparently the baby can hear what's going on in the real world, so maybe we'll make a habit of talking to the baby. I suggested we start reading to it (which might be the only way to get me to read a book)

C has a doctor appointment tomorrow... more to come

November 13, 2009

words to learn to live by

To get thine ends, lay bashfulness aside; Who fears to ask, doth teach to be deny'd.
Robert Herrick English lyric poet (1591 - 1674)

November 12, 2009

surly sets sail

the surly cross check made its maiden voyage this week, in the condition shown here, without handlebar tape and with poorly adjusted brakes.

Today the tires are significantly dirtier and the brakes (after a lot of agonizing) are perhaps a little better adjusted. On the first trip the handlebars weren't tight enough, and today I found out the right brake lever wasn't tight enough. But I haven't crashed, so that's positive. The bike is rad for sure. With a bunch of upgrades (including Ritchey handlebars, Vittoria tires, Thomson seatpost, Cinelli cork handlebar tape, and FSA crank arms) I've still managed to build up the Cross Check for about $300 less than the MSRP for one that's all stock...

November 11, 2009

Sticky Buns

Email from C:
I think the baby loves sticky buns!  I have read online that the baby will kick more/be more active about 1/2 hour after eating sugar and it's doing the same thing it was doing last night after my sticky bun! Maybe that means at least I don't normally eat a lot of sugar

November 10, 2009

Judo kick

I think I just felt the baby kick - no lie!
Oh yeah - here are the wool socks:

November 6, 2009


Sent by my dad, to me and C both:

Having a child is surely the most beautifully irrational act that two people in love can commit. Bill Cosby

destroyer will kill

Can't remember why I thought of this, but I revisited this link to a bunch of photos I uploaded about 6 years ago to a graffiti website called "Robots Will Kill": DESTRO

Good memories about my shitty skills and some fun times spent alone trying to get good and dreams about getting down with big writers


dont worry about critiquing this art, positively or negatively, it was a hot minute ago

November 5, 2009

Wool, Gender...

I've had good intentions to write a post that included a photo of the first present I bought for our expected buddy: two pairs of merino wool baby booties, colored orange and green--as gender neutral as I could get...

I'm obsessed with wool and it's inherent ability to keep animals (including human animals) warm and dry... Anyway, they are kinda cute, and despite all the reviews that complained about them being too small, I bought them anyway. They were on sale too...
All is well around here. C hasn't been burdened by nausea so much, but did learn that peanut butter granola for breakfast will make her puke her brains out a few hours later... wooops.

Not much else to report. Trying to get an ultra sound scheduled before Thanksgiving, at which point we hope to find out the sex of the baby. I haven't put a lot of thought into it beyond being anxious to know and to start narrowing down baby names, or at least rule a few out. It seems pretty hip these days to not find out and be super gender neutral about stuff, but I don't see any harm in knowing. I don't plan on forcing football on a boy, or Barbie Dolls on a girl. No matter what I plan on impressing our child with punk rock, skateboards, bikes, and gardening... I do have some slight concerns about a future baby shower and receiving gifts that are all pink or all blue...
Oh, and C was looking on a Chinese Gender Calendar or something, and determined that, based on the month of conception, our baby will be a girl... weird...

November 4, 2009

The religion of environmentalism

On an NPR-broadcast BBC news program yesterday I learned about a British guy who is suing his former employer for philosophical discrimination, based on the legal precedent of religious discrimination. The philosophy in question was centered around Climate Change and his relatively radical environmentalist ethics. Now, I don't know his whole ordeal, and I can't say I support his legal actions, but I was intrigued to think of environmentalist philosophy as a spiritual/religious ethic. The plaintiff said "my belief is underpinned by moral and ethical values comparable to many of the world's is crucially underpinned by ...overwhelming scientific evidence..."

One listener ("J.R." of Boston) responded to the story to criticize this guy's actions saying environmentalism was in no way similar to any of the world's faith-based "religions" which rely on faith in the unknown, whereas Climate Change has a scientific basis. [This is the best I could do to transcribe what was said:] "Religion is based on blind belief that notions established by others are purported to be the word of a higher being and that your own well-being will be enhanced by following and making offerings to those bringing you the Word. Climate Change is based on scientific evidence. How we are causing damage, how to avoid doing so, and the consequences of not making changes are not a matter of faith..." That is a terrible comparison. I can agree that religion is faith-based, but to deny a spirituality grounded by science is sad. And having to follow and make offerings to the ones bringing (i.e. interpreting) the Word? That statement really narrows it down to the blind leading the blind. [I'm not attacking religion here, but the choices of words used to describe Religion in such a myopic way.]

My thoughts? How cool it is that the ethics of environmentalism have a proof-driven, scientific basis! And it could be argued that there is plenty of unscientific faith and sublime wonderment in nature and environmentalism. For example, compassion toward animals is purely an ethical thing. A stance against pollution is comparable to a stance against murder or, more generally, a stance against Evil.  I love the thought of environmentalism as a spiritual, religious movement. It makes perfect sense. Everything one does to benefit the environment is a religious act; going on a hike (or a bike ride) is a pilgrimage...

A BBC article on the story can be found here

The radio "programme" that includes the quotes above can be heard
here (at ~14 minutes)