Something Beautiful or Humorous: Apples that Eli painted

Monday, April 16, 2007

Return of the Guest Blogger

We just sent off our family update letter & I thought I would post Chris' portion since it was a good little update of what's been going on & entertaining, too:


Well I’ve seen it all! I love the opportunities that living in a major metropolitan area gives you. Last month I went for a late night grocery run on Saturday night. When I arrived, there were a bunch of Hispanic people playing cricket in the grocery store parking lot, in the rain. Let’s review this again. Hispanics … cricket ... midnight … rain. Where else in the entire world would see a thing like that? I thought it was just so fun and interested I stood there for several minutes getting wet and enjoying that game -- trying to see the ball.


A couple of weeks ago, Eli asked me to tell him a story about Superman. I told him a story about several heroic deeds done by Superman. Afterwards as we continued to talk I said, “Even though Superman is not really in this world . . . blah blah blah blah blah.” To my utter surprise, Eli burst out in tears. I abruptly stopped what I was saying and said, What’s wrong? Between sobs, Eli cried, “I want Superman to be in this world!!” All of a sudden the world was so much lonelier for Eli now that his superhero was *. You would think that I told him that Santa Clause had been killed just before Christmas.

Now for the last several weeks Eli has been asking me if his favorite characters from books and movies exist in the world. Today he asked me if Handy Manny was in the world. He keeps asking. Is a chinchilla in the world, are jumping beans in the world? Is the desert in the world? He seems so much more reassured if it is. I try to come up with answers that reflect a positive spin, “Well I’m sure there is a handyman name Manny somewhere. And I’m Handy Daddy.” He seemed satisfied.


We have some friends that are moving to India with the military. He is going to graduate school there, paid for by the Army to foster friendly relationships with our Asian friends. As they leave, they attempted to unload some of their belongings, because India is a long way to take your Star Wars toys. We (indeed, don’t tell anyone, I still have a hankering for Star Wars toys, but never had an excuse to own any until now) have an entire case full of Star Wars action figures, fighter ships, podracers, hover crafts, blasters, cannons, speeders, millennium falcons, etc., etc., etc. Eli and I had a hoot running around chasing each other’s ships this very evening. Eli is now the same age I was when I, along with the rest of the world, was introduced to the (out of this) world of Star Wars. My sister Teresa will be cringing at every excruciating word of this story since she bore the brunt of my Star Wars fantasy world re-creations where she had to endure endless sound effects of laser blaster explosions, and constant action. (Did she miss out or what?). Anyway she’ll especially cringe because her own son is beginning to show disturbing tendencies toward re-creating the same fantasy world – albeit enhanced with CGI – in his own mind. All I can say is, enjoy it while you can Jakob, because it’s more exciting when you’re a child. Star Wars, in all its glory, is still enjoyable to play with my son, but more because spending time with my son is fun. Though secretly I still wish I could lose all my inhibitions and immerse myself in fantasy once in awhile, but alas. . . . back to reality.


Reality, this week has meant the stomach flu, catching vomit in my hands, cleaning it out of carpets, and trying desperately, though unsuccessfully, to teach Eli and Mia to use a bowl or the toilet when blowing chunks. Do you know how hard it is to get that smell off your hands? Of course, Natalie got the worst of it. As you can imagine, the first incident is always the most voluminous (how’s that for a euphemism.) She called me while I was on the train ride home, “Are you almost home?” “Get here fast!” I have to give props to Eli though for helping to clean it up. I don’t think I would have been that thoughtful. I would be saying, “I’m sick darnit! You clean it up.” Instead, he cheerfully helped Natalie clean the mess up.

We have learned that the current strain of flu incubates for about a week. Last Tuesday, Eli missed pre-school due to the flu. We learned on Wednesday that half of his class stayed home for the same reason. It incubated throughout Spring break and reared its ugly head on Monday. Today, almost a week later, it showed up in Mia. I spent the night in Eli’s room on Tuesday morning in the hope of avoiding any other carpet catastrophes. I’m hoping it’s not a time ticking inside of Natalie and me.


I took a certification test yesterday to show my employer that I understand the fundamentals of computer security. I am now a CompTIA Security+ certified technician. I have been studying on and off for the past 6 weeks for this test. By the time I was one third of the way finished with the test, I was convinced that I was going to fail and have to take the exam over again. I was going to have to face the shame of telling my employer, who paid for the preparation class, prep materials and the exam itself, that I didn’t pass the exam. I was dreading the prospect of having to take the exam on my own dime – or rather my own 2,440 dimes. As I hit the finish button on the computer administered exam, I was relieved to read the word “CONGRATULATIONS”. I think I only passed by one measly question. But at least I get to keep my dimes and my pride.

I hope you all are well.



*Oh by the way, either it's both blogger & yahoo being crazy, or it's our strange computer filtering software. But the word missing in the headline "Superman is ..." It gets filtered out everytime, no matter what I do. Apparantly, it's not allowed to say someone is ****. So here are some synonyms:

asleep, belly up, less, blooey, breathless, buried, cadaverous, checked out*, cold, cut off, deceased, defunct, departed, done for*, erased, expired, extinct, gone, inanimate, inert, late, lifeless, liquidated, mortified, no more, not existing, offed*, passed away, perished, reposing, rubbed out, ed out, spiritless, stiff, unanimated, washed up, wasted

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