Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Saved!

In my previous blog I asked for help to save my blog and myself from being annihilated, due to my wife being angry with me for not finding our butterfly garden thingy in time for our butterflies to emerge from their cocoons.

Well, good news: Betty found a butterfly thingy, so I'm off the hook! She put the cocoons in the new terrarium less than an hour before the first butterfly emerged. It was a close call!

Thank you to all of the people who emailed us, left comments on the blog or on Facebook, called us (at PetSmart, Toys R Us, and J&R's in Lafayette) and/or texted us. You all are the best!

I'd like to even thank the guy who blackmailed me by calling me to tell me that he had a butterfly garden but it would cost me $500 cash in unmarked bills. Even you, sir, should be thanked for finding the butterfly garden for me. You may be criminally insane, but you are a devoted reader, and for that I can't thank you enough.

So the Tantrum is saved... at least for now. Thanks again!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Help Save the Tanory Tantrum!

Friends and family,

I write to you now in desperation. I need your support to help save the Tanory Tantrum. I don't need your money... your prayers would be nice... but what I really, really, really need from you is this:

A butterfly garden.

"What is a butterfly garden?" you ask. Well, it's a mesh, cylindrical thingy that you put cocoons in, and when the butterflies emerge from their chrysalises, the butterfly garden is what they fly around in. It looks like the picture in this link.

Betty says she has one, but it's in a box with some old books. But I can't find the butterfly garden, or the box - or any of the boxes that she thinks I should find. It wouldn't be a big deal had she not asked me about it every day for the last month and if we didn't think the butterflies were going to emerge any moment.

Damn my amazing procrastination skills!

Why is the Tanory Tantrum in jeopardy? Basically, if I don't find a butterfly garden, Betty's going to kill me. I'm not joking. And since I'm the only writer for the Tantrum, that means the Tantrum would come to a halt.

As a former teacher, Betty wants to teach my daughter how butterflies emerge from their cocoons. As a mother, she wants my daughter to experience this magical moment. And as a pregnant wife, she's going to have a roid rage and smash my face in if I don't find a butterfly garden pronto.

Please help save the Tanory Tantrum by saving me from total annihilation! Call me, email me, snail mail me, call my parents, call Betty's parents - just get in touch with me. Name your price and you've got it! I just need it in time for these butterflies to hatch.

Help me, Obie Wan, you're my only hope!

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Hunt

What do the following items have in common?

Money
Chocolate
Keys
The remote to your satellite radio
Miniature bottles of alcohol (like those served on a plane)
Panties
A pocket encyclopedia
Condoms
Plush handcuffs
An iTunes gift card
Porn playing cards (like those handed out in Vegas or found in your grandfather's dresser)
A subscription card to Consumer Affairs
KY jelly

Give up? Here's the answer:

They're all items in an Adult Easter Egg Hunt.

That's right, folks, while your spouse is hiding Easter eggs in the front yard for your kids and their friends, you should be hiding your own special eggs in the back yard for all your kids' friends' parents.

While you're at it, take pictures of all the parents' faces as they find an egg (and what's inside), print it out, and hide it in an egg for next year's adult Easter egg hunt. Keep the original as blackmail for when you need a favor later in the school year.

Just make sure to not get your eggs mixed up. The Tantrum is not responsible for your kid's therapy.

One week til Easter!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Twilight: The Squeakquel

Betty and I watched the first half of Twilight: New Moon tonight, and I've got to be honest, it should have been called the Squeakquel - because it's all bark (er, whiny whimpering) and no bite.

In addition to the movie being really slow and boring, there were some issues with physics. For instance, when the guys turned into werewolves, their wolf bodies were much larger than their human bodies, which clearly violates the first law of thermodynamics. I mean, I'll suspend my disbelief to watch humans turn into werewolves on the drop of a dime in broad daylight, but don't mess with the first law of thermodynamics, dawg!

Even though we didn't like the movie, it did get us thinking: if we had our choice, would we rather be vampires or werewolves?

Betty didn't want to be a vampire because, apparently, vampires are cold all the time. But I said that she could sparkle, like Edward Cullen in Twilight, if she stood out in the sun. She seemed to like that. But then said that she didn't want to drink blood.

That's right, being cold outweighed drinking blood in Betty's decision to not be a vampire.

By the way, you'd think more vampires would die of malaria or blood parasites than wooden stakes through the heart. Anyway....

Betty opted to be a werewolf. Which you could have already guessed if you've been a reader for a few years, as evidenced by this particularly insightful blog post.

As for me, it was a tough call between vampire and werewolf. On the one hand, I'm hairy enough as it is without the extra hair that accompanies the curse of the werewolf. But vampires are kind of like half human, half bat, so that made me think that vampires probably crap guano. I don't know if my fixation with the bathroom would allow me to make guano like that.

So in the end, I would also have to choose werewolf.

So two questions for you, dear readers: 1) Have you seen Twilight, and if so, what did you think about it? And 2) Would you rather be a vampire or a werewolf, if given the choice?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Lost

Betty and I have just started watching "Lost" on NetFlix On Demand. We just watched episode 2. I know, I know, we're six years behind. But we like to watch an entire television series at one time.

It's kind of a hobby, really. We watched all of the episodes of the Sopranos at once... then all episodes of Entourage, Mad Men and Seinfeld at once. The list goes on. Watching everything at once helps us to catch any subtle references from one episode to the next.

So that's what we're doing with Lost. But Season 1 has 25 episodes, and each episode is 43 minutes long, so with six seasons we're looking at a couple of months of nothing but Lost.

It had better be worth it.

Watching Lost makes me think of what I would do if I were ever stranded on an island. Assuming that my iPhone's battery would die after a few hours of playing Unblock Me, I'd probably spend the rest of the time on a hand-crafted sand toilet, chafing myself raw while humping a hand-crafted sand woman, and/or making male genitalia out of sticks and coconuts.

Basically I would be the first person that everyone else on the island would consider eating.

From what I've seen and what I know about Lost, I'm struck by the similarities between Lost and a series of books called Riverworld that I read a few years ago. Lost also reminds me of Pincher Martin by William Golding - who also wrote Lord of the Flies, which Lost also emulates in the form of the plane crash, the people stranded on the island, etc.

Maybe Lost is a thesis on William Golding? Could I have figured out the mystery after only two episodes?!?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

March Madness

At the start of the NCAA men's basketball tournament, otherwise known as March Madness, I filled out a bracket on Yahoo! sports. But since I don't follow basketball and don't trust the seeds/rankings, I decided to put the "madness" in March Madness and associate each team with a psychotic disorder, then vote on which disorder beats the other.

So far I'm in 2nd place out of 7 contestants. Not too shabby, really.

I randomly selected a psychosis out of a hat, scratched out the team's name on the bracket and replaced it with the psychosis. In some cases this worked well, like when I associated Pseudohypoparathyroidism with Missouri and Hypnagogia with Clemson, or when I associated Cyclothymia with Cornell and Hypocalemia with Temple. Well, everyone knows that Cyclothymia trumps Hypocalemia any day, so that was an easy one.

But there were times when it didn't work out so well, either. Like when I associated Kansas with Schizophrenia and Northern Iowa with Sleep Deprivation. That one seemed like a no-brainer, but apparently Sleep Deprivation can be pretty serious and affects more people than Schizophrenia, so Northern Iowa ended up beating Kansas and my bracket ended up going to the crapper. Luckily, almost everyone else in the competition chose Kansas to win it all, so the loss was a wash.

So March Madness has been fun and exciting, but also educational. And to be honest, I've spent more time looking up psychotic disorders than I have actually watching games. Unfortunately, I couldn't find any disorders that make a person march in place madly, as I definitely would have voted for whatever team got associated with that disorder.

But who knows, there's still time left in the NCAA men's basketball tournament, so maybe I'll find that disorder online - and update my bracket with seconds left on the clock to win it all.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Word on the Street

A few months ago we took Anne to see Mickey, Minnie, Tigger and Pooh at the Cajundome in Lafayette. My parents came with us, because they had no choice - I had already bought tickets for them, and told them if I had to sit through it then they should, too. Then I guilt-tripped them into canceling their other plans and escorting us to the Cajundome for some Disney fun.

I'm what we call the "Loving Son."

We all thought it was "Disney on Ice" - except Betty, who repeatedly told us that it was not on ice. But once we Tanory's get something in our heads, it's tough to get it out. (I'm still singing a song that I heard on the radio from 1994.) And because I'm cheap, I bought the highest possible seats available. Even the Mickey on Annie's shirt got a nosebleed.

The Disney show had a long-running plot that none of the kids could follow, could only fit a few characters on stage at the same time, and was comprised of people in Disney character outfits running around and bobbing their heads in time to the pre-recorded soundtrack. To be fair, there was a humanoid Cinderella who really sang and danced, but we were too far away from the stage for Anne to enjoy it.

Anne bounced in her seat when Tigger came out, but other than that, she could really care less. We weren't surprised, because the show kind of sucked.

So when Elmo and friends came to Baton Rouge, we decided to take Anne, but we didn't have high expectations for it. But boy, were we ever rocked out of our frickin' skulls by the Sesame Street crew!

[Picture: Taking the obligatory picture in front of the Sesame Street truck]

For starters, instead of paying for the cheapest tickets we could get, we decided to spring for floor seats. We were on the third row from the stage, and we had aisle seats just in case a tall person with big hair sat in front of us.

Second, there were about ten characters and a human actor, and the stage was large enough for everyone to fit on at one time. The stage wasn't just a boring old stage, either. It had a catwalk. One of the characters was a lady postal worker, and she sang and danced the whole time. And we knew that it was real singing, not pre-recorded stuff, because we were close enough to hear her actual voice.

[Picture: Big Bird rocks the crap out of the stage]

The characters were agile - they were dancing, jumping, doing cartwheels, and had synchronized dance moves. And the characters' mouths moved, so it really looked like they were talking and singing. It was night and day compared to the Disney show.

[Picture: Big Bird rocks the crap out of the stage]

One of the benefits of floor seats at the Sesame Street show is that the characters do stuff off the stage, like dance in the aisles. Annie got to see Abbie Cadabby, Bert, Elmo, Baby Bear and Count von Count all up close.

[Picture: The characters danced with us on the floor]

Baby Bear danced with Anne, and Bert, Elmo and the Count blew her kisses.

[Picture: The characters danced with us on the floor]

The best part about the Sesame Street show was that it didn't have one long plot. It was broken up into short segments, about 7 minutes each. Each segment had a different background with lights and confetti, and every character was on stage for every part of the show (except when they were dancing on the floor). There were two one-hour sessions with a short intermission in between. It kept Anne's attention, but was fun enough for adults as well.

We loved the Sesame Street show so much that we're thinking about going up to the Sesame Place theme park in Pennsylvania. Now I just need to think of a way to con my parents into coming with us.

Friday, March 19, 2010

The Aftermath of the USS Kidd Blog

It's been almost a week since my last blog, and that's because I haven't been able to sit down in front of my computer in order to write anything.

Because I haven't been able to sit.

My last blog post, about going to the USS Kidd, had a picture of the Mississippi Bridge in the cross hairs of one of the Kidd's guns. I took the picture and posted it to my blog, but I did not - I repeat, did NOT - point the gun at the bridge. The gun was already pointed there. All I did was take a picture.

And for that, I had a visit with a guy named Bubba, who was not very gentle with the rubber gloves.

I saw him approach my car right as I parked at Walmart. He was in all black, with dark eyeglasses and even had on an earpiece. I didn't resist when he grabbed me, because to be honest, I was kind of expecting it. I thought the Department of Homeland Defense would send me an angry letter, but didn't think it would come to this.

After an hour of interrogation and then fifteen minutes - although it felt like a few days - of a full body search, I was free to go.

It turns out that "Bubba" was not from the Department of Homeland Defense. He's just some guy with bad vision and poor hearing that was lost and confused in our local Walmart parking lot, and when he saw me he had a flashback to when he was a proctologist in Gonzales, and decided to give me a free screening.

So the bad news: I still can't sit down for very long, and I lost a week's worth of blogging. But the good news: Apparently my colon looks great.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Tourists In Our Own Town

Betty, Anne and I were tourists in our own town today. It all started when we went to downtown Baton Rouge to take Easter pictures with Annie. She took pictures with four cute and cuddly bunnies, and then Betty and I jumped into the mix. Only one bunny peed while we were there, which makes our photo session a great success.

Once the photo session ended, we thought we'd go exploring downtown Baton Rouge. We tried going to the Louisiana Arts and Science Museum (LASM) but it didn't open for a few hours, so instead we decided to go to levee.

Baton Rouge means "Red Stick" in French, and is named after a large red cypress stick that used to be the dividing line between the Houma and Bayou Goula tribal hunting grounds. There's still a giant red concrete pole in downtown Baton Rouge... it doesn't separate tribal hunting grounds anymore, but does divide the free parking from the pay-for-parking areas. And of course, every time I see it, I can't help but to call out, "Does that make you horny, baby?!?"

[Picture: The actual Baton Rouge]

Downtown Baton Rouge is also home to the USS Kidd, which is a Destroyer. You know what Destroyers are - they're the ships that were two or three pins in that game Battleship that were always hard to hit.

[Picture: The USS Kidd and two other kids]

On our way to the USS Kidd we stopped at the Shaw Center, which Betty and I refer to as the "Baton Rouge Bellagio" because it has a couple of fountains on the sidewalk and also because I lose money every time I walk by Capitol City Grill. It's just so tasty!

[Picture: The Baton Rouge Bellagio]

I had never been on the USS Kidd before. Or I should say, I don't remember ever going. My mom said that she took me on a field trip in the second grade. Anyway, I knew that I loved this thing the first moment I saw it, because it was flying the Jolly Roger.

[Picture: Roger is jolly!]

Once inside the Kidd, there were a few things that I absolutely had to do. First, I had to do the Titanic / King of the World thing at the front of the ship.

[Picture: The king and princess of the world!]

Second, I had to lay in the bunks. The main goal was to get Betty in there with me, and then to use my line, "It's not the size of the boat but the motion in the ocean," but she said that the boat was docked so there would be no motion, plus it was docked on a river and not an ocean. So then I insisted that it really is about the size of the boat, but apparently Destroyers are one of the smaller ships, so that ended our conversation.

[Picture: Nap time!]

And finally, I had to play with all the stuff that wasn't bolted down.

[Picture: Chez Bob's!]

As a man, I had no choice but to stare in awe at the guns. When we got to the front of the ship, I kept singing Big Gun by AC/DC every time I saw the big gun on the deck. The other tourists were impressed by my air guitar and Angus Young impersonation.

[Picture: Big guns!]

Anne and I had a Father/Daughter bonding experience, as we sat down alongside one of the guns and aimed it at our favorite Baton Rouge landmarks. We did the countdown together: "Ready?"

[Picture: Finding a target...]

"Aim..."

[Picture: Aiming...]

"Fire!"

[Picture: Fire!]

I've always hated the Mississippi Bridge, mainly due to the traffic. I held the gun steady while Anne pulled the trigger. We didn't feel bad for imagining destroying the Mississippi Bridge, mainly because we knew we were using a gun made by GE. Buy American!

[Picture: GE]

That concluded our morning in downtown Baton Rouge. If you have any good tourist advice for a person who has lived in or around Baton Rouge for ten years, please leave a comment!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Kiss Me, I'm Irish!

St. Patrick's Day is not just a day to wear a leprechaun outfit, get drunk on green beer and pee on your neighbor's cat - although, let's face it, that's mainly what we do every year.

St. Paddy's Day is also special because some small part of me is Irish. It's true! Someone on my mom's side was Irish, so to honor my heritage, on March 17th I go by the name O'Robert McTanory, and I scream, "Freeeedoooom!" every time I pass a Freedom Fuel gas station.

I'm a Lebanese / Irish mutt, which explains why I like to get drunk on hummus while wearing a green suit and a hat with a belt wrapped around it.

And to celebrate, Betty and I are taking Annie to watch the St. Patrick's Day Parade in Baton Rouge on Saturday. We'll probably take our new van, because we might need to haul some of our drunk friends back home from the parade.

Speaking of the new van, we just got XM radio, which has an Oprah channel. Since Betty loves Oprah, I programmed the van to have the Oprah Channel set. I listened to it today, just to see if it was worth listening to, and the people on the Oprah Channel were discussing kissing. It was weird - people were calling in talking about how they don't like how their spouses kiss but didn't know how to tell them. We're talking 15 years of being married to someone that you don't want to kiss. That just sucks.

After the Oprah Channel killed my self-esteem, I went home and kept trying to kiss Betty. And apparently Betty thinks it's weird when I try to kiss her a lot, or at least when I tell her that I want to kiss her a lot, because she made a big deal about it.

Interestingly enough, she didn't make a big deal out of me spanking her every time she walked by. Hmm....

But tomorrow, as well as on St. Patrick's Day, she'll have to kiss me. Because I won't stop screaming, "Kiss me, I'm Irish!" until she does.

Of course, if she won't kiss me, there will always be a cup of green beer waiting for me, and a neighbor's cat to catch.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Best Picture

Betty and I just watched The Hurt Locker, which recently won Best Picture at the Oscars, and I have a couple of complaints.

Full disclore: I am an Avatar fanboy.

First, the name "The Hurt Locker" is totally inaccurate. At no point were there any lockers, and if there were, they were in perfect working order. There were no nerds locked up in lockers... no people in Foot Locker uniforms... and no politicians talking about lock boxes. In actuality, this movie was about the war in Iraq, and about a group of guys who go around disabling bombs.

In contrast, take the name "Avatar." We know what the word "Avatar" means: either a manifestation or appearance of a deity, or a computer user's representation of himself/herself or alter ego. (Or both, if you are a deity addicted to World of Warcraft.)

Second, The Hurt Locker didn't seem to have a lot of emotion, other than suspense, anger, confusion... okay, maybe it did have a lot of emotion, but it sure felt emotionless to me.

In contract, Avatar had was chock full of emotion. Remember that scene where the hot, blue CGI chick screams something at the other guy? Or the time the sexy blue thingy with no bra was jumping around in a tree, in a very emotionally complex way? Or the time the little white, floaty tree seeds landed on the pretty blue girl with perky, digital ta-tas? I may or may not have teared up during that part.

Finally, Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker's director, is sexist. Think about it: The Hurt Locker only has three scenes with women in it, if you exclude the scenes having old Iraqi women with covered faces. Bigelow, you totally slighted women! How sexist of you!

In contrast, James Cameron had some very interesting, "developed" female characters. (Notice my double entendre. I'm referecing breasts here, in case you didn't realize.)

Look, all I'm saying is that while The Hurt Locker was a good movie, it wasn't the best movie of the year. Avatar is going to change the way that movies are made for years to come. Samsung, Panasonic and Sony are all now releasing new 3D HDTVs. And guess which blue, naked alien is going to be popular this Halloween?

Betty and I were bored with The Hurt Locker. In my opinion, giving The Hurt Locker the Academy Award is just a do-over for when they passed up Saving Private Ryan in favor of Shakespeare in Love.

But neither The Hurt Locker nor Avatar were better than The Hangover. Be honest, you loved it. The ending credits alone should have earned the movie an Oscar.

What was your favorite movie this past year and why?

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Bath Time!

Anne's going through a new phase... she doesn't like to bathe. What can I say, she's her father's child.

But tonight she kept saying, "It's hot!" over and over, when she hadn't even felt the water yet. It's like some previous bath experience has left her feeling hot and bothered. I tried to put her in the tub but she clung to me.

So I did the only logical thing I could think of: I took off my shoes, socks, shirt and pants (but kept on my undies and glasses) and hopped right in. The water was perfect!

Anne came right in after me.

We had a great time playing together. I washed her hair, then let her wash mine. I used a wash cloth to soap up, and she followed suit. We talked about each body part as we cleaned it - our shoulders, our arms, our elbows and toes. Then we played with her toys. Who knew bath time could be so much fun?!?

Then I screamed, "Floater!" repeatedly, as loud as I could, and Betty came running in. But I was just joking. Ha! Then I made her give me a sponge bath.

I'll be sleeping on the couch tonight, if anybody needs me.

Finally, both Annie and I dried off with her towels. I got to be the tiger tonight. Roar!

[Picture: The Afterbath!]

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Blame Adam Lambert

This season of American Idol got you down? Are the pitch problems irking you more than normal? Does it sound like karaoke instead of a new artists displaying their talents? Were you bored with the boys and thought the only redeeming quality of the girls' performances were the short skirts?

Although we usually love American Idol, we skipped a few weeks while watching the Olympics. So when we were watching AI this week and were just completely bored with it - so bored, in fact, that we fast-forwarded through most of the music - we wondered if our stint with the Olympics just left us disconnected from the contestants.

And then it hit me: it's all Adam Lambert's fault.

Last season had a ton of talent. Danny Gokey, Kris Allen and Scott MacIntyre (the blind dude) come to mind. But Adam Lambert was by far the number one reason why we tuned in every week. He had a great voice, he had stage presence, and he made every song sound completely new and interesting.

The problem with this season is that there's nobody like that. And we got accustomed to being blown away every week. We got complacent.

And now we're bored. And it's all Adam Lambert's fault.

Lambert sings a song called, "Whataya Want From Me?" Well, Lambert, I want you to go back in time and not have been so awesome, so that I could still enjoy American Idol.

Damn you, Lambert! It's all your fault!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Happy Birthday, Mommy!

Anne Louise wanted to write a special birthday blog in honor of her favorite mommy. I told her OK, if only to get a break from watching Choo Choo Soul. I've let her write what she wanted, but have edited the words so that they are actual words instead of random strokes of the keyboard. (She was talking while she typed, so it was easy to translate.)

Hi Mommy, it's your favorite child, Anne. I wanted to wish you a Happy Birthday! Did you know that my birthday is coming up soon, too? Just making sure you remembered!

Mommy, let me count the reasons why I love you.

1: You make me happy!

[Click for picture]

2: I love when you read to me! You teach me all kinds of fun things!

[Click for picture]

C: You like to play dress up with me, and sometimes Daddy will play too!

[Click for picture]

4: You make good cakes! I know you can't have cake because of your gestational diabetes, but just a reminder that my birthday is in a month and my personal preference is a princess cake, thanks.

[Click for picture]

B: We both look good in pink!

[Click for picture]

6: You always keep me warm and cozy, even when it's cold outside! And that's good because Daddy said that it's been a lot colder ever since the Saints won the Super Bowl.

[Click for picture]

7: You always watch Mickey and Minnie with me, and we sing all the songs and dance together. You even let me listen to it in the car. I love Minnie Mouse! But I love you most of all!

[Click for picture]

8: You and I say prayers every time we eat and go to bed. Daddy says you care about my soul. Is that like Choo Choo Soul?

[Click for picture]

9: You taught me who I am.

[Click for picture]

10: I'm sad when I'm not with you.

[Click for picture]

G: You don't mind carrying me around everywhere you go, so I get to see lots of fun things!

[Click for picture]

H: You take me to all kinds of fun places, like the zoo, baseball games, and to the park! For my birthday I'd like a zoo and a park and a baseball team, and a pony and a princess cake, please.

[Click for picture]

I: Daddy says I'm pretty just like my momma!

[Click for picture]

11: You helped me win some loot at the church fair. And when Daddy tried to say that we were partners and therefore I owed him 10% of my winnings, you let me keep it all.

[Click for picture]

12: We always have a good time together!

[Click for picture]

And last: I love you because you're my mom! And since I know that my birthday is special, that means that your birthday is special, too!

[Click for picture]

I love you, Mommy! Happy Birthday!