Monday, March 31, 2008

LSU Firefox Theme

If you love FireFox, and if you love LSU, you'll be happy to know that FireFox and LSU just got it on and made a baby, lovingly named the LSU FireFox theme. You can get it by clicking here.

Is it as pimpalicious as the PimpZilla theme, or as smooth as the Aquatint Black Gloss theme? Not really. But you can use it while basking in the victory of the LSU Lady's Basketball team over the North Carolina Achilles Tar Heels on Monday night.

Geaux Tigahs!

Coach Tanory

I have officially been named my wife's "Birthing Coach." To celebrate, I bought a whistle and lanyard, then watched reruns of the past three Super Bowls on the NFL Network.

Geaux team!

As Coach of the Team Tanory Birthing All-Stars it's my job to get my wife in shape for the birth of the baby. I've been scoping out the competition and I think I've drawn up enough plays to give us an edge. We'll just have to drill our butts off over the next couple of days if we plan on winning this thing.

I won't lie, it's going to be tough. This will be our first time to the big game and we'll be up against birthing teams who have done this two, three, four... up to eighty times for all I know. But what we don't have in the way of experience we will make up with tenacity.

Watching reruns of Super Bowls on the NFL Network gave me a couple of great ideas. For example, the Defensive Coordinator usually tells his defense how to set up by way of waving flags or giving hand gestures. Using this stratagem, I've gone ahead and devised a table of hundreds of different hand signals and flag colors that I'll be waving throughout pregnancy. I've also fitted a microphone and ear-piece inside of a helmet that Betty can wear so I can talk to her when I'm pacing the sidelines.

Everybody on board? Great. Let's get all our hands in here, and on three on three, one, two, three.... Teeeeaaaaam Tanory!

Now gimme three laps, starting on the whistle.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Daddy Wear

I'm going to be a dad in a few weeks - maybe sooner - and that means I have to start dressing like a dad. From here on out, I should be wearing enough mismatched clothing to make everyone on my block grimace when I go outside to check the mail, get the paper or yell at kids to get off my lawn.

I began my journey of finding the appropriate "Daddy Wear" today while grilling up some steaks. I wore a red shirt open over my white undershirt, blue shorts, brown socks and tennis shoes. Tomorrow I'm planning on working on the yard with just overalls and loafers.

My dad perfected "Daddy Wear" a long time ago. His fatherly style involves tucking a Polo into sweatpants. Not only does it look comfortable, but it usually looks pretty good as well. He's my mentor!

Love ya, Pop!

If you have any ideas on how I can dress for success as a dad, please leave me a comment.

The Davidson Wildcats

I can watch any sport between any two teams as long as it's a good game. Baseball, basketball, football, poker, cricket, and street dancing, they're all the same: the better the teams, the more at stake, the better the game. (Hot cheerleaders make the game more enjoyable as well.)

Speaking of good teams, I've been reading about this little school from North Carolina named Davidson that put the stank on Gonzaga, Georgetown and then Wisconsin in the NCAA tournament. I figured this Davidson team was really something special and wanted to watch them play at least one game. So I'm currently watching the Davidson Wildcats play the Kansas Dusts in the Wind in the Elite 8, and man is this is great game!

In fact, this is one of the best games I've watched in a long, long time. Davidson's Stephen Curry is a fantastic player. I keep yelling, "I'm so excited!" and am waking Betty up, which is why I've been confined to the computer room and am writing my blog right now - I'm banned from the living room while Betty naps.

You might be asking yourself, "How can anyone, even an 8.5 months preggers, sleep when such a great game is going on?!" Well, currently it's half time. I'm sure she'll wake up after I start screaming and hollering during the second half.

Go Davidson!

(Update: Davidson lost, but had a chance to tie or win the game at the very end. That in itself says a lot about this game. Congratulations on a great season, guys!)

The Century

I've been meaning to read Peter Jenning's book The Century for a while but had never gotten around to it because I am a master procrastinator. But after giving up procrastinating for Lent, I was able to catch up on so much stuff that "The Century" made it onto my To Do List.

For those of you not familiar with "The Century," it's a coffee table book about the 20th century that came out a few years ago that every family has but apparently nobody reads. You may have seen it on or under your parents' coffee table, or maybe on a shelf somewhere in your living room. It's big, it's got a black and white cover, and most probably, it's got a lot of dust on it.

I can't blame people for not reading it. Most of the people who own the book lived through at least half of the previous century. I, on the other hand, was only alive for the last 20% of the previous century and spent most of that time either watching cartoons, sleeping or thinking of excuses to not shower, so I missed most of what was going on.

And now that I've learned more about what our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents went through, I respect the heck out of them so much more. The world has changed so much in the past century, and they've lived to see it all. They saw nations rise and fall, were there for the advent of TV, were the first people to see movies in technicolor, read the first nudie magazines, played Pong in an actual arcade, and most recently witnessed the digitization of society, all the way up through the epitome of online journaling: the Tanory Tantrum.

"The Century" doesn't give an in-depth account of any one topic. If you're looking for a history lesson, this book might just pique your interest, but that's about it. The topics are still very interesting, and it's worth taking a look at.

But enough about its contents. What I really like about "The Century" is its heft. I saw a spider in the living room tonight and so I held the book over it until the spider was completely encapsulated by the book's shadow. I let go of the book and the spider scrambled for it's life at right about the same time. For just a split second I could hear the spider scream in anguish as gravity sucked all 50 pounds of the book towards the earth at 9.8 m/s². Then SPLAT! World Wars Sr. and Jr. just kicked your spider ass, bitch!

If I were reading a paperback novel, could I have killed said spider? Probably. It just wouldn't have been as much fun.

If you are interested in reading snippets of some of the major events of the 20th century, or if you are looking to smash multiple insects in one drop of a book, pick up "The Century" by Peter Jennings and Todd Brewster.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

T-Minus Two Weeks

We are officially t-minus two weeks away from the baby's due date. Actually, we are about 12 days away. If I had to describe how I feel right now it would be "Excightened!" which is a combination of "Excited!" and "Frightened!"

Or maybe that's just indigestion. I need to stop eating my anxiety away!

One of the most common questions we get is do we think the baby is a boy or a girl. My official answer is, "I think the baby is a girl. I don't know why. Maybe it's because I've had to mentally prepare myself for a girl."

Which is true: I have had to mentally prepare myself for a girl. My female friends don't agree with me that a man needs to mentally prepare himself for a daughter, but that's because women just don't understand....

Men and women are different. Our bodies work differently, especially our hormones. Men's bodies create the most testosterone around age 18, which means that 18 year old men are just ticking time bombs. When you're male, and a teenager, and are filled to the brim with hormones, you'd just about hump anything that doesn't mace you. I remember what it was like to be a teenager, when my body thought its sole purpose was to create testosterone... and I think I was one of the "good guys," too, which makes having a daughter so much scarier.

Women have no way of understanding what this feels like, because women never feel this way about men. As far as I know, my wife has yet to exhibit any kind of sexual attraction to me, other than that one time when she got pregnant.

My point is, I know how it felt to be a teenager, so I know what's on a boy's mind. And kids today are different than when I was a kid - they're growing up faster these days. This is a scary world to raise a daughter in. I'll be damned if any boy is going to be around my daughter without me present. And I know that I can't be everywhere at once.

This, my friends, is why I've had to mentally prepare myself for a daughter.

The good news is that I won't really have to worry about any of this until my daughter is 16 or so. That means I have a good 16 years to think of a way to kill any boy who tries to get cozy with my daughter, think up a good alibi, and start booby-trapping my house and yard in order to put my plans into effect.

If you are a father of a young girl and have any good thoughts on how to deter young men (other than shining your shotgun in front of them while videotaping their oath of having your daughter home at 11 the night of Prom), please leave a comment.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Tree's a Crowd

Either I have a sinus infection, am allergic to something, or my body has simply decided to kick up mucus production into full gear.

Hopefully I'll be healthy before the baby gets here, otherwise I'll be quarantined from seeing the birth of my own baby. Or maybe I'll just have to wear a mask.

Wearing a mask might be a lot of fun - I can just pretend like I'm at the Olympics in China, where masks are merely the first line of defense against bird flu, pollution and Tibetan revolts. My Olympic event will be the Dad-a-thalon Derby, where I will challenge other fathers in changing diapers, putting the baby to sleep and playing Guitar Hero III all at the same time.

If only I could beat that Metallica song on Hard! Damn you, Metallica!

However, if my sinus issues are due to an allergic reaction then I'm declaring an all-out war on trees. Pollen is, to put it simply yet disgustingly, a tree's sperm. That means some tree got its rocks off and I inhaled some of it. I hope this doesn't affect my standing in the heterosexual community. I have already declared war on veggies, and it was just a matter of time until trees became one of my primary targets. This sinus infection is just the straw that broke the horny tree's back.

Don't blame me, trees - you brought this upon yourself. Next time, keep it in your parents... er, bark.

So the next time you're outside, kick a tree in its nuts and tell it that came from the Tanory Tantrum.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter Egg Hunt

Easter eggs (Latin name Ovum easterialis) are one of the most sought-after items of the Easter holiday. But where did this tradition of hunting Easter Eggs come from, and how did it become so big in America? The Tantrum spent its Easter finding out.

I traveled to one of the first sites of an Easter Egg Hunt: the backyard. Here I had a chance to speak with a family that has been hunting Easter Eggs for more than 50 years. They explained to me how there are various species of Easter Eggs, which can usually be told apart by their various colors and patterns. The solid pink Easter Eggs, for example, have the ability to grow salmonella in very little time, which is a good defense when Easter Eggs are out in the wild. And light blue Easter Eggs with the word "Bobby" marked on them in colored dye have eggshells like armor, and are very difficult to crack.

We kept all of these things in mind as we gathered our baskets, nets and rifles and set out to hunt some Easter Eggs. Kids, do not try this at home without adult supervision.

We first moved silently behind a bush in the backyard. Silence is the key when hunting Easter Eggs, lest they hear you and disguise themselves in the shrubbery. We then used hand signals to split into teams, each taking a different part of the backyard. I went with a person whom I will call "Jane" (all names changed for protection of the innocent) and we hunkered down in between a swing set and a slide.

"There! In the flower bed! Do you see it?" Jane whispered to me. I raised my binoculars to where she was pointing.

"Crikey!" I exclaimed. "She's a beaut!" The Easter Egg was green on top, red in the middle and purple on the bottom. It also had polka dots on it, which I deduced to be some sort of camouflage for when it hides amongst the flowers.

Jane and I split apart and circled around the flower bed. Our plan was for Jane to ambush the Easter Egg and flush it out into my awaiting net. It worked perfectly! Until...

"Argh!" I shouted. "It shot yolk into my eye!"

I wrestled with the venomous Easter Egg for what seemed to be ten minutes. It had the better of me until I jammed my thumb into its cloaca. As it squealed in pain, Jane shot it in the neck with a tranquilizer dart. Success!

All in all we caught ourselves fifteen Easter Eggs. Not bad for a day's work.

So when did this tradition start and how did it become so big in America? Who cares?! As long as all Easter Eggs are annihilated. Hunting season ends this week so let's get on it, America!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Friday, March 21, 2008

Barattini's is Back!

Barattini's is back! Awwww chee-yeah-yah!

For those of you who don't know, the part of Prairieville that we live in doesn't have much in the way of restaurants. Sure, there's a Sonic, Mickey D's, Taco Bell, etc, or what I like to call "poser restaurants." But there's not a lot of local restaurants, or what I like to call "real restaurants."

But there used to be one glimmering light shining down on P-ville: Barattini's. To understand my joy of Barattini's, we have to go back several years.

(Cue the dream sequence...)

The old Barattini's was right down the street from us. It literally only took us one minute to get there from our house. We saw an ad for it in the local paper one day and decided to try it, and then went back every two or three days afterwards. It was that good!

What made Barattini's so good? To start out with, their recipes are awesome. We regularly partook of Eggplant Barattini (fried eggplant with crawfish and cream sauce over pasta), ravioli, and my favorite, pizza! Also, and this is the kicker, they made everything fresh. This meant two things: first, that their food was delicious because the ingredients were better; and second, it usually took a couple of minutes longer than a "poser restaurant" to get your food, which meant we had to get there early to eat.

But as you probably know, eating early and often isn't a problem for Ol' Bob. We would swoop in right when Barattini's opened, get our fix, then take our leftovers home to enjoy them the next day (or more often than not, later that night). Many a night I would have to sleep on the couch because Betty would punish me for eating her share of the leftovers. (If it's in the fridge it's communal property! I just made that rule up but now I'm going to make it retroactive for the course of four years.)

Not only was the food incredible, but they had great entertainment. There used to be an old Cajun man who would play the keyboard and guitar and sing in a nasally high-pitched voice, and he was a lot of fun if not simply because he was hilarious.

Barattini's demise was a shock. We drove past it one day and it was locked up with For Sale signs all over the place. Little did we know that the guy who the Barattini's leased the building from is a huge dick. Every six months or so you'll see For Sale signs up on the windows of whichever unlucky person has decided to lease from him. He uses loopholes in the law to kick people out without giving them ample time to get their affairs in order. I've thought of suing him for the pain and suffering he's caused my family by kicking Barattini's out... but back to the main point:

Barattini's is now back! You can find them at 2507 S. Purpera Road in Gonzales. The restaurant is a little smaller, the atmosphere is different, and the menu isn't as large, but the food is just as tasty. If you ever decide to go, give us a holler... we'll probably already be there and will pull up some extra chairs for you!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

I Am Legend's Alternate Ending

If you saw the movie "I Am Legend" then you might be interested in the film's alternate ending. Personally, I like the alternate ending better than the film's actual ending, but not as much as I liked the book's ending.

I really liked the movie, and I also really like when movies have alternate endings so I can pick and choose which one I will associate with the film. It's like the old saying, "You can pick your friends, you can pick your nose, but you can't pick your friend's nose, however you can pick your favorite alternate ending to a movie while picking your nose and flicking your findings at your friend."

But back to the point of the blog: You can check out the alternate ending to "I Am Legend" below. Enjoy!



http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=9069194438158569730

Now You See Me...

I must admit, I rock at Peek-a-boo.

I don't mean to brag, but if there were a Peek-a-boo Championship somewhere in America, I would win it. You wouldn't be able to see me winning until I revealed myself to you and blew your mind, though, because that's how I roll when I'm peek-a-booing.

Boo!

Why do kids love peek-a-boo so much? You can entertain a munchkin for endless hours by hiding your face behind your hands and then opening them up, each time exposing a new facial expression. Personally, I like to switch it up and move my head to the left of my hands, then to the right, etc, instead of always appearing at the center of my open hands. Sometimes I'll really make my face disappear, usually to the applause of the women in the room.

I'm like the Houdini of child entertainment. Are you not entertained!?

Peek-a-boo is supposedly tied to the baby's learning of object permanence. According to boring scientists, when a baby's Object Permanence skillz are 0 the baby thinks that your head really disappears when you hide it behind your hands. Then when your face appears, it's like magic! But for babies! Amazing!

It's basically the same concept that applies to the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy books by Douglas Adams), which believes that if you can't see it then it can't see you.

So now the question is, when I make kids laugh by playing Peek-a-boo, are they smiling because they are genuinely happy to see that my head did not disintegrate before their eyes, or are they just happy to have someone to aim at when they spit up?

Baby Talk

Betty's last day of school is in a few weeks, and then she starts her new career as a "Hot Mom." I, of course, will continue my job as Assistant Crack-whore Trainee.

Not only will Betty be a Hot Mom, but I predict that she will also be up for the "Ascension Parish Mom of the Year" award for the 2008 calendar year. She's been doing a great job with her gestational diabetes. She's also been reading several books about the baby's first few weeks of life, and she imparts the books' wisdom to me in between bouts of Guitar Hero III and Super Mario Galaxy, so I'm learning as well.

We've been taking classes, reading books, and even watching How To videos on how to be better parents for our little dude or dudette. Last night we watched a DVD about the Dunstan Baby Language, created by a woman who has a photographic memory for sound. For those of you who don't know, the Dunstan Baby Language is like an audiobook of the Rosetta Stone which translates Baby Talk into English. I even learned a new word, "Neh," which means, "I want your ta-tas now, woman!"

Man, if I had only known about the Dunstan Baby Language years ago, I could have gotten some serious ta-ta action!

In conclusion, babies are better at getting ta-ta action than I am, which should come as a surprise to no one. But if you want to learn more about the cries that babies make and what they mean, check out DunstanBaby.com. Who knows, it might help you to get your little one to sleep at night, or it might just help you see your woman's milk-engorged boobies more often. Either way, everyone wins with the Dunstan Baby Language.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Buy a Clue

Our good friend Kim lent us a VHS tape of the 1985 movie Clue on the one condition that we wouldn't fast forward through the commercials. The movie was actually pretty good - it had lots of cleavage, which made me happy, and it had several alternative endings, which made Betty happy because it confirmed her hunch that it was the butler in the foyer with the revolver, but only in the second alternative ending.

The commercials were incredible, too. It was like digging up an old time capsule, then remembering why you buried it in the first place.

One of the first commercials was Brad Pitt in a Pringles commercial. It made me want to go to the beach and spy on girls through an empty Pringles can, just like I did in the 80's.



The next commercial, and every alternate commercial for the rest of the night, was a Maxi Pad commercial. This one is the Always Plus Thins with wings, whose motto was "Make your vagina fly!"



My favorite commercial though was this Juicy Fruit commercial, because the Juicy Fruit jingle is one of my favorite jingles of all time. Other than the current Viagra jingle, that is. I do love that Smiling Bob!



VHS tapes captured the essence of the 80's by permanently recording the commercials of the time. It's almost a good thing that we no longer use VHS and instead use DVDs, Tivo and YouTube, because imagine what kids twenty years in the future would think if they watched a VHS of a movie shown on TV tonight: they would see countless commercials about prescription drugs, pills to get old men horny, condoms, and Botox. According to our future children, we are all wrinkle-free sex-craved double-bagging drug addicts.

So was it really the butler in the foyer with the revolver? Or was it Mrs. Scarlet with the candlestick in the dining room? Maybe it was Smiling Bob with a pack of Viagra and a syringe full of Botox. You'll only know if you add Clue to your NetFlix queue. Better yet, borrow it from a friend who taped it back in the 80's.

Thanks again for the VHS tape, Kim! To return the favor, we'll let you borrow our copy of Pootie Tang.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Killer Instincts

Once when I was a kid I was bit by a Brown Recluse spider. The spider bit me right by the nook of my arm. I was probably 13 or so at the time, but I still have the scars from that bite on my arm 15 years later. I must have some residual nerve damage from that bite, because whenever I scratch around those old bite marks, the tips of my fingers tingle.

Since then I have declared war on insects.

One thing I love to do when I kill any type of bug is to loudly declare how the bug died. For instance, if I squish a bug with my shoe, I will shout out for all the world to hear, "Death by New Balance!" Oh, bugs know. Bugs fear the New Balance.

My dad bought me one of those electric bug zappers in the shape of a tennis racket, which is fun to use at night when you can watch terrified bugs die in a fiery explosion via 1,500 volts of electric energy. "Death by Electric Tennis Racket," I say, as I blow the smoking remains of the fried bug off of my weapon. Seriously, this thing is great for parties.

And on Saturday I caught 5 wasps doing a reconnaissance mission around my patio. I tracked them back to their home, sprayed them with insecticide, then did a multi-hit combo of electric tennis racket stabbing and New Balance bludgeoning. Ssst! Zap! Pow! "Death by multi-faceted attack utilizing electricity, insecticide and New Balance!"

These are only small battles in the grand scheme of war with the insects. But we must persist. Bugs need to be taught a lesson. They need to understand that they can't just bite us whenever they feel like it. They can't spread malaria, encephalitis, dengue and West Nile with impunity. And most importantly of all, they can't munch on the nook of my arm without permission.

Nobody bites my arm without asking me! Nobody!

I have been permanently scarred by a spider. But I will have my revenge. No bug is safe as long as I have my electric tennis racket, my New Balance sneakers, and one or more cans of insecticide. Oh, and the fact that my wife continues to call me a ninny for being scared of bugs only adds fire to my fury.

Death to insects!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

How to Install a Car Seat in 21 Steps

Having just installed a car seat in my wife's car, I feel that I am now a qualified expert on car seat safety, or as I like to say, a Car Seatologist. Here are some helpful hints on how to get your own car seat installed.

1. Buy, borrow, lease or steal a car.

2. Obtain a car seat and matching car seat base, then place the car seat base into the rear middle seat.

3. If using the car's seat belts to secure the base, loop the seat belt through the base and connect the seat belt's connectors together. If using the latches that come with the base, connect them to the hooks that are located behind and underneath the seat cushions (if your car has them).

4. Pull on the seat belt / latch strap (hereby known as "the strap") to tighten the base much as possible.

5. Wiggle the base to see if it moves more than an inch to either side. At this point it will probably move about 5 inches.

6. Mutter under your breath.

7. Pull on the strap to tighten the base again. At this point your wife may be calling you a sissy for not getting it tight enough the first time. Just focus your rage and anger towards the strap and continue pulling. You will not break the strap, sissy boy.

8. Wiggle the base to see if it moves more than an inch to either side. At this point it will probably move about 3 inches.

9. Curse loudly. Avoid eye contact with your wife.

10. Sit on top of the car seat base. You will not break it. Sitting on it will apply pressure to it and move it further down the seat cushion, which will help you tighten the strap and make the base more secure.

11. While sitting on the base, pull on the strap to tighten the base. Keep pulling until you run out of air from straining so hard. Remember, this is for your kid's safety, so don't stop until you completely run out of breath. Be a man, dammit!

12. Take a deep breath. Slowly count to ten.

13. Wiggle the base to see if it moves more than an inch to either side. At this point it will probably move about 2 inches.

14. Take a brief walk around the car, letting off some of your anger. If you see any of your neighbors, DO NOT ATTACK THEM. It is not their fault that your car seat is not tight enough to please your wife yet. Remember, patience is a virtue.

15. Continue circling the car, then ambush the car seat base when it least expects it by bumrushing it and jumping on top of it. While it is confused and unsteady, loop the strap around your hand a few times then yank on it as hard as possible. Take pride in knowing that all those years of yanking have finally paid off in terms of your child's safety.

16. Wiggle the base to see if it moves more than an inch to either side. At this point it should move about 1 inch. If it moves more than that, kneel on the car seat and jump up and down on top of it, pulling the strap tighter every time you land.

17. If you've successfully tightened your car seat base so that it only wiggles about an inch to each side, congratulations! You can now brag to your wife about how manly you are.

18. Place the car seat into the car seat base.

19. Visit a free car seat inspection station. You can find these at http://www.nhtsa.gov/.

20. Create a baby and put baby in car seat. (Optional)

21. Check the car seat every time you use it to make sure that it is secure.

Remember, if you screw up with your baby's car seat and put your child's life in danger, your wife will never forgive you, nor will she ever give you another chance to create another baby. Keep that in mind when installing your car seat, and good luck.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Naming Conventions

To friends, family and random strangers who are currently reading this blog post, I am Bobby. But to people at work I'm known as Robert.

Most of my coworkers, when they find out that my friends call me Bobby, are pretty shocked. They can't think of me as "Bobby." As one person told me, "Bobby is a kid's name." Maybe "Bobby" brings to mind images of a happy and carefree person, whereas I'm usually a stick in the mud at work.

I don't apologize for it, either. Look, all you Bobby-haters, I don't go to work to be anyone's friend. I'm there to get that large list of items on my To Do List done at work so I can leave on time and finish my large list of items on my To Do List at home. If you in any way impede my progress of getting my work done, I get more Robertish and less Bobbish.

I bring up names and people's reactions to names because Betty and I are about to name another human being. What a huge responsibility! And I, who have two names which people identify with two different personality traits, am supposed to pick the perfect single name for my child. Can it be done!?

What if he or she doesn't like the name? Or what if other people don't like it or make fun of our kid? It's like this Saturday Night Live sketch from 15 years ago, where a guy gets a telegram for "Mr. and Mrs. Asswipe Johnson" and the guy tries to explain that his name is pronounced "Ahz-wee-pay."

Is it even worth considering what other people will think about our kid's name? People say that a person grows into the name. You might hear a name like Plaxico and think, "Plaxico?! What kind of stupid name is that?" But then later on in life you think, "Wow, Plaxico is the perfect name for that guy. I can't imagine him as anyone but Plaxico."

Anyway, if you want to guess the baby's name, it's 50 cents a guess. Just add your guess to the comments list and all proceeds will go to the baby's college fund. We'll collect the money later. If you are the first to guess the correct answer, we'll figure out your prize later.

And just for the record, it's not Plaxico, Knüt or Ahz-wee-pay. But it might be a combination of any or all of those.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Honkalicious

If you've ever wondered what sounds a small army of geese would make if they were to surround you and to all honk in unison as loudly as possible intermittently for two minutes straight, all the while honking into a microphone with two super-powered amplifiers pointed at your head, then you've obviously never had your car alarm go off while you're sitting in the car.

It's time for my wife's car's annual inspection, but the car needed a quick tune-up before I could pay someone $18 cash to put a new shiny sticker on the windshield. So I took the car to Midas because I trust the Midas touch. My hope is that something in my car turns to gold which I can then sell on the Black Market. Baby needs a new pair of Wii games!

So I gently pulled into a parking spot. I put the car in park and turned off the ignition. Then I reached into the glove compartment to find the license and registration. You never know when you'll need those things.

If you're like me, you keep every single record of your vehicle's maintenance neatly stored in a crumpled heap of origami boulders in the glove compartment. This makes trying to find the license and registration a little difficult. While sifting through mounds of paperwork it got a little hot, so I decided to open the car's door (since previously I had turned the car off and could not simply roll down the window).

"Blaaah! Blaaah! Blaaah!" My car was going crazy!

"Don't panic," I said to myself. Yes, I talk to myself all the time, deal with it. "There must be a button or something there that will turn off the alarm." I looked for a good minute and could find nothing that stopped the blaring bleat of my car's horn.

"Blaaah! Blaaah! Blaaah! Blaaah-you'll-never-turn-me-off-blaaah!"

Shitballs! Where is the fricking button!

I thought about driving off, then wondered if the alarm would ever die down or if I would just end up driving home with my alarm bleating every two seconds. Would a cop pull me over and shoot me for being such a moron?

I frantically searched the car for any button that looked like it would turn off the alarm. I pushed every button I could find. I locked and unlocked the doors from inside the car, I turned on and off the radio... I even put the parking brake up. No luck. I thumbed through the car's manual and didn't see anything on the table of contents that said "How to turn off the alarm if you are stuck inside the car."

I was that guy that can't turn his own alarm off! How embarrassing!

I slumped back in my seat, and without warning, the car went dead silent. Victory! "Slumping in the seat must have worked!" I shouted in joy to myself. "I did it! I saved the day!"

In my jubilation and relief, I forgot to carefully read every page of the car's manual, so little did I know that my car's security system is set to only blare the alarm for two minutes before tiring out. I had not, in fact, saved the day. Oh no. My day was about to get a lot noisier for two more minutes.

"Blaaah! Blaaah! Blaaah!"

What did I do this time?! I had only opened the door again! Why was my car possessed? Was it the discount gasoline? Is that why you're mad at me, car? Answer me!

So I had two more minutes to carefully read over the car's manual, and figured out that I had to step out of my car, place the key in the driver's side lock on the outside of the car, and twist. Afterwards, blissful silence.

I turned around to glance at the Midas employees working in the garage, and sure enough, they were all glaring at me with their arms crossed. I knew what they were thinking: we're in for some serious trouble. Who knows what's wrong with this guy's car.

Maybe tomorrow I'll actually get the car inspected. Every day is a new adventure.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

10 Items or Less

There I was, stranded at the back of the line at the Prairieville Wal-Mart, with hundreds of dollars worth of groceries in tow and a tired and very pregnant wife wanting very badly to go home and lay down. Some of my groceries originally came from the Frozen Foods aisle, but due to our long wait, these had started to thaw and could now just be classified as "Foods."

I was in the line that I assumed to be the shortest, due to it having the least amount of people. In actuality it was the longest line because it had the most number of items to scan as well as the most number of price checks to be obtained, plus the cashier was new and one person was paying with a check. It takes a luckier man to pick the right line at the grocery store than it does to win the lottery.

I looked to my right to where ten tired and underpaid cashiers were scanning groceries through their scanners like inefficient robots in need of a good oiling. I glanced over to my near left to see a cashier holding up a plastic sac holding an unknown vegetable and calling for a price check. Sweat started streaming down my face as my wife started to tell me how tired she was.

Off to my far left, a sign flickered briefly. I looked up and read it, and it took a minute for the words to sink in. Yes... a new hope.

I had been in line for thirty minutes but I decided that I had waited long enough. I turned my buggy to the left and started pushing my hundreds of dollars worth of groceries across the floor, to my wife's screams of "What are you doing?! We'll lose our place! Noooooo!"

And pulled up to an empty lane with a flickering light that read "10 Items or Less."

My only hope was for the cashier to not be a newbie Wal-Mart employee. Newbs sometimes look at you or ask you how you're doing, or use other methods to achieve some acceptable level of customer service, and right now the last thing I needed was for any Wal-Mart employees to notice me. Thankfully, the cashier must have been working for Wal-Mart for a long time, because she ignored me until it was way too late.

"What do you think you're doing? Nuh-uh, you get all that stuff off of this aisle!" she yelled, while I continuously stacked item after item onto the conveyor belt.

I ignored her further admonitions as I neatly stacked two boxes of Cafe Francais on top of a pack of once-frozen waffles.

"You can't do that!" a woman from behind me yelled. I turned to her and she must have seen how crazy I was at that moment, because she took a few steps back and turned her head.

"This is the '10 Items or Less' lane. You gotsta get all this stuff off of here 'cause I can't help you, otherwise I gotta call my manager."

My hand halted in the air, suspending a jar of organic peanut butter a foot above the conveyor belt. I look at the cashier and said, "I've got $200 worth of merchandise here, and if you don't start scanning it right this minute, I'm leaving it all on this conveyor belt and you can put it back yourself. The quickest way to get rid of me is just to start scanning as fast as you can."

She scanned every item, glaring at me as she threw each item into a plastic bag, then roughly handed me my bags as each filled up. I just looked her and told her, "If you think glaring at me and being angry at me is going to make any difference at all in my life, you've got another thing coming. I'm married; I'm use to being wrong all the time."

Let the rule-followers die of old age while waiting in line at Wal-Mart. I'm using the "10 Items or Less" line every time I go in now.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Baby T's Greatest Hits

Since we're not finding out the gender of our baby, and since everything we've got for the baby is neutral colors, my family has started calling the baby Knüt, as in "Neutral." (Betty's family calls the baby Plaxico - long story.)

We just bought a new video camera and I'm trying to get the hang of it so that I'll be an expert cameraman when it comes time for Knüt's first steps and all of those other big moments.

I've decided to learn all I can about the camera by trying to make a compilation of my unborn child's "greatest hits." This montage video would include all of his or her biggest kicks, random turnings, and anything else that will make Momma's stomach look like an alien is about to spring out of her belly.

Well, things aren't going as expected. It looks like Knüt has stage fright. Anytime the camera turns towards Betty's belly, the baby takes a five minute break from dancing around in there. So far the video is pretty boring, unless you're into close-ups of non-moving belly buttons. For the record, I think belly buttons are totally awesome.

I'm not sure how to stimulate my child into kick-boxing Mom's insides so I can get a good video of it. All I know is that this shyness definitely doesn't come from my side of the family.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Email Subscriptions Info

Apparently there is an issue with my blogs making it to everyone's email inbox each morning. I know this because it is happening to me. In fact, Betty didn't get the blog I wrote about her birthday, which almost got me in some very hot water.

I just tweaked some of my settings on Feedburner, which is the service I use to send out the emails. It also creates a nifty RSS feed - and, oddly enough, the RSS feed seems to be up-to-date. Go figure.

So if you're having withdrawals from the Tantrum, let me know and I'll come to your house and personally entertain you for 26 seconds, which according to Google Analytics is the average amount of time that people spend on my site. After that, I charge 1 cookie per two minutes, or 1 double chocolate chunk cookie per four minutes.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Bare Idol

One of my strongest talents in life is being able to tell who is gay and who is straight. That should tell you all you need to know about my (lack of) talents. It's not necessarily "gay-dar"... it's more like Spider-Man's spider sense.

Anyway, I like to use my talents to determine which American Idol contestants are gay or straight, and then we take bets on whether I am right or wrong. Believe me, it leads to much more interesting conversations than trying to determine which contestant is going to win. (For the record, David Archuletta is going to win.)

I don't really care which ones are gay or not - I don't vote, because that would be gay. Sometimes it's really easy to point out gayness, like with Danny Noriega, the Sassy Gay. And sometimes it's only obvious to me, like with David Hernandez.

Now, for the record, I called out David Hernandez for being gay the moment I saw him on American Idol. I took a lot of crap for this, because for some reason, people associated his good singing with being non-gay. Nay, I said to them, vocal ability has naught to do with the gayness of one's genetic makeup.

Anyway, David Hernandez apparently used to strip at an all-male strip club, and would give lap dances to other men. Don't believe me? Then read this article from the AP. The AP doesn't lie.

Okay, so the point of this blog wasn't to out David Hernandez. Like I said before, I don't care if someone is gay or not - I just do it for the money. The point was that if you read the link that I posted above, you'll see that David Hernandez stopped stripping because his state license expired.

There is a license for being a male stripper? Seriously?

What does one have to do to have a male stripping license? Is there a test? Is there a height-to-wang ratio that needs to be met in some way?

I'm only asking because I routinely strip down to my underwear / spandex / birthday suit and take a couple of laps around the block, mainly when I'm starved for attention, and I don't want the police to think that I'm a male stripper. Because when asked, I could not provide any documentation on that topic, and the last thing I would want is for the police to think that I am either stripping without a license or that my license has expired. The State is at its worst when it's not getting money it thinks it deserves.

Also, now that it has been confirmed that David Hernandez is gay, someone owes me money.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Birthday Girl

Monday is Betty's birthday! Happy birthday, Beebles!

Last year we made a whole day out of her birthday. We went out to the Baton Rouge Beach, ate sandwiches on a picnic blanket, then got savagely attacked by geese. We also dropped by a tailgate party for an LSU baseball game where Betty's mom was waiting with cake.

[Picture: Betty's cake]

That night we also went out to eat somewhere fancy. And I'm sure I gave her something nice - otherwise I would have heard about it by now.

This year we're still figuring out how we're going to celebrate. Betty shot down my idea of playing laser tag and me letting her win. That's like two birthday presents in one, down the drain!

What Betty really wants for her birthday is for everyone to call her or email her. If you don't have her phone number or her email address, you can always leave a comment on the blog.

Betty also told me that she wants you to think of something that I can get her at the very last minute. (You can email me via this contact page if you have any suggestions!)