Tuesday, January 26, 2010


So, I had to shave off my beard for my new job this week. I am sad to see it go - I actually assumed I would just have it for the duration, until it went gray and I ended up looking like a douche James Brolin. Better yet, an asshole Kris Kristofferson. I started the beard around the same time as the Ron Artest Melee - I have really had it that long.

I knew I would have to have some fun when shaving it off, so here is the debacle in pictures:

I didn't trim the beard for about a month or so beforehand, because this was the last hurrah! I wanted to see how long it could get, see if I would qualify to be a member of the Fleet Foxes or anything.

Here was the first trim - mutton chops and a goatee. Not too drastically different, but a little tool-like.

Here is what I would look like with just a goatee. Not too bad, but nothing special.

Es muy bueno. Fantastic stuff. I had this for a while before I decided to get rid of it. Just an A+ though. I don't know how anyone took me seriously. (Yes, I did cut my neck shaving!)

Thank you to the Sanchezes for the hot water and the sink. Sorry I did this though.

The final product. I went from a 33 year old hippie to a 20-something corporate tool in just a few hours. I will be getting carded a whole lot more now.

I miss the beard.


Here is an update on Carrie - she really has gotten a little bigger since the holidays:

I am ready for work tomorrow!

Please note how we need a new camera.
One more random photo here - taken the day we found out that we were having a Maisy and not a Stephen:

Note the awesome beard. Man I miss that thing!

Monday, January 18, 2010

2009: Songs of the Year

Yes, this is belated, and it is my New Years resolution to use social media more. So here is my list of 2009 songs that I liked that no one else probably will. Note: some of these are off 2008 albums, but I will defend them being on my 2009 list when necessary.

Here are the top twenty five:

25. Chairlift - Bruises - This is a song from a commercial for iPod or something, but I kind of like it, and I have a crush on the lead singer chick. Also, they are from Brooklyn, as are a surprising number of bands on this list.
24. Bat For Lashes - Daniel - Just now getting into this song. Pretty good stuff, and I felt like I should include it.
23. MGMT - Kids - OK, the video starts off weird, so just fast forward. But then the video itself is disturbing somewhat, so just know that recently they auctioned off the monster props for this video. I think one of the kids in this group went to White Station.
22. Matt & Kim - Lessons Learned - Also known as the video where they get nekkid in Times Square. It is pretty harmless watered down punk, but it is fun. Also from Brooklyn.
21. Vampire Weekend - Cousins - I just recently had to come to terms with the fact that I like Vampire Weekend. It seems like I would hate them if I met them in person, but I like the music. Just the opposite of the Groban.
20. Mastodon - Divinations - These guys are metal but they just kick ass. Drew Magary loves these guys too, and so does Pitchfork. We are all in agreement.
19. Silversun Pickups - There's No Secrets This Year - I haven't made my way through this album like I have with Carnavas, but this was one that I listened to a lot this year.
18. Matt & Kim - Daylight - These guys again. I want to be couple friends with them.
17. The Sounds - No One Sleeps While I'm Awake - I am surprised this song wasn't bigger. Hot lead singer chick, very catchy pop song.
16. Chromeo - Night By Night - Good God I love this song. Feels like disco. I have loved these guys since I heard their song about washing your hands on Yo Gabba Gabba.
15. Silversun Pickups - Panic Switch - The best song off the album for me so far. The Lazy Eye of this album. But then again, over time, Lazy Eye wasn't my favorite off the last album anymore, so who knows how I will feel about the rest of the album when I really get into it.
14. Muse - Uprising - Someone on a message board once put "If it's not Muse it's crap!" I do like Muse and this song kicks ass, but the rest of the album is surprisingly weak.
13. Fleet Foxes - Your Protector - This was the year we really got into Fleet Foxes, as you will soon figure out. This song was never a single and I didn't listen to it a lot at first, but it is now one of my favorites off an album of a bunch of favorites.
12. Flosstradamus - Big Bills - This song isn't even on an album, just on the Green Label sound website. I love it - again, the chick from Chairlift, and another Brooklyn group.
11. Fleet Foxes - Blue Ridge Mountains - The second song that the Fleet Foxes did on SNL - fell in love right away. This is Carrie's favorite by them.
10. Phoenix - 1901 - Another song from a commercial. I am just starting to get into this CD, but this song was everywhere last year. Good stuff.
9. Noisettes - Never Forget You - One of these songs that Mom would like. Has a 50s/60s feel. We actually played the video for Mom, and the first thing she says is, "what's wrong with her hair?"
8. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Zero - Just another great song by these guys. Hopefully it is one of the songs on this list that you already know well. Not that I am putting obscure songs on here for the sake of doing so, but there is just so much music available now on the internet. I love reading other people's lists of songs of the year because there is always one or two on there at least that I don't know and end up liking.
7. Mastodon - Oblivion - Seriously, these guys kick ass. Plus, it is metal that is really high quality in terms of the music and not just a bunch of power chords and screaming.
6. Santogold - Lights Out - Another here that is a 2008 song. But I don't care - the video didn't get airplay until this last year, and I just really like Santogold.
5. MGMT - Time To Pretend - Another 2008 song, but it was on 89X's top songs of 2009, so there is my precedent. Just a great song, it really is. Plus, White Station!
4. Animal Collective - My Girls - OK, Pitchfork's song of the year, which everyone made fun of. Hell, they even had it at #9 for the decade! I know it is techno-ish and all, but now that I know I am going to have a girl, the lyrics seem poignant, which seems rare for a dance indie hipster song, but I love it.
3. Company of Thieves - Oscar Wilde - OK, no one has ever heard of this song probably. The rest of the CD is iffy at best, and I don't know if these guys will ever make it. However, this is just a great song, well written. The chick can wail, and is cute in an ugly sort of way. I can't describe it. I have it ranked too high because it is the type of song that would win songwriting competitions. I just really wish the rest of the album was on par with it. Plus, this really is possibly the greatest video of all time.
2. Grizzly Bear - Two Weeks - Really, one of my favorite songs ever. When Grizzly Bear played at Michigan Theater, we went around town looking for them and didn't find them. This song was played on an episode of How I Met Your Mother this year. Another Brooklyn band.
1. Fleet Foxes - Mykonos - Every once in a while, you hear a song that you remember where you were the first time you heard it. This was of course the first song they did on SNL, and I just remember being speechless. Just a moment of thinking, I liked these guys already but this might be one of the best songs I have ever heard. It is emotional, moving, eerily beautiful. The things that these guys do with their voices and harmonies reminds me of the Beach Boys almost - like their voices are a string section playing together perfectly. I can't describe it obviously. This makes my short list of favorite songs ever.

There it is. I sure put off writing this for some reason! Probably the new job and the wife being pregnant and all. 2009 was a suck ass year for me, but the music was pretty solid. I hope the music is just as awesome in 2010, but I hope the rest of it all goes a little better!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

New Ultrasound Pic

OK, so, there have been better pictures posted online before, but this is an ultrasound pic that has been scanned into a PDF and then converted into an image, so it isn't pristine or anything.

You can see the baby's head on the left, with her body going off to the right. Pretty self explanatory.

However, if you zoom in a little on the picture, then look just slightly up and to the right from center, and so help me there is a face! It is kind of creepy. Carrie thinks it looks like John Kerry. I think it is just the evil monster that was living in Carrie's uterus to begin with. We are both right.

Monday, November 2, 2009

My Belly!

Wow! According to Hillary I still haven't "popped" yet. Yikes! How big is this thing gonna get?

Monday, October 19, 2009

Ultrasound Part 2

Here is the newest batch of photos. The first one is remarkably clear, and the third one kind of looks like a goldfish, but that is the heartbeat in that photo. There is a fourth pic that got cut off, but it is blurry and looks like a teddy bear.

We have both been sick recently, but we have been monitoring the situation in case Carrie gets a fever. Carrie recently gave in to her craving and got some Taco Bell, which didn't stay down long. So we probably won't be making any more runs for the border any time soon. (Thank God! That stuff is just Alpo anyway.)

12 weeks today!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Finally the Finale

I love this stuff. I am on my feet clapping for the final two. The kids beg me to stop. Their teenage years are going to be a lot of fun for me. (bwahahahaa) We will be alternating between the TiVo of this and the Wings game. Priorities!

Good vs. evil, cute vs. ugly, guy next door vs. gay next door. We actually had a debate about Lambert's ugliness - I guess I think he is uglier than Carrie does. But yes, I want Kris to win pretty badly. Oh wait, he said "guyliner." Much worse, I think. Nothing wrong with being gay, but guyliner is just embarrassing. This is guyliner - Richard Alpert is just made that way. (Seriously though, every time they show Adam's total jock dad, we immediately blurt out "I love my dead gay son!" It's just a reflex at this point.") This is the first time in Idol history that my very favorite is going against my very least favorite in the finals. It's fun! My favorite is apparently dating Anoop now - good job Anoop.

Lambert- I think he's too theatrical. He bugs me. That said, this was my favorite of his crappy performances. We actually agree - not as much high pitched shreiking. Connor says, "It looks like he's walking on clouds!" Chloe says, "He's not yelling! He always yells!" Ha! Randy - wow, did he steal that outfit off a homeless guy? Is Randy colorblind? Did Scott personally choose this ensemble? Also, somewhere in the AI crowd, a 95 year old Anthony Hopkins is there applauding. What a weird celebrity sighting. Simon agrees with the theatrical. FINALLY. Chip has been waiting for him to say that all year!

Kris- Adorable, perfect, comfortable, smooth, fantastic. Plus, his face looks like that. Love him! Simon calls round one for Kris. Alright! You know, someone sings this song every season. Kris did a really great job, but I was pretty bored during the performance. Also, on my thoery of judges' bias - Randy says, I hope the Lakers win tonight, and you did a good job. Later in the show, Paula will call Adam "iconic". As for Kris? Good luck to Kobe and the Lakers. Just a bang up job by the judges this season. Really, on Thursday, Mary Murphy's blood curdling screams will seem like sagelike advice compared to Randy, Kara, and Paula.

Lambert- Change is Gonna Come. Uh, okay. No kidding. Will Kris be performing Strange Fruit? This is such an important song and so meaningful, the fact that they are having Lambert perform in his over the top, Broadway style is a disgrace to the song. This offends me much more than hard core pornography. Still - one of the greatest songs ever, of course they chose it for Lambert. What does Kris get, We Built This City on Rock and Roll? This suit is my favorite look of his all season, for what it's worth. I'm still not voting for him though. So what's left to say at this point? I love one and hate the other. Let's talk about Randy- this is his best outfit of the season too! Yes, if that is meant ironically! (We talked on the phone - we are really differing on Randy's suit tonight!) Kara says that she liked his interpretation, that you could feel the song - yeah, I got really angry about racial discord from Lambert tonight. Just some great commentary Kara. This is the song Rosa Parks listened to after MLK was assassinated, btw. I know that Lambert is just performing what they are making him perform with this song, so this commentary is more on the show than Lambert, even though I still don't like him. Oh wait, Lambert just started in with the yelling and the tongue, so I feel I need to comment on that. My comment is, Yuck. Put your tongue back in your mouth, and sing rather than shriek. Thanks. OK - we figured it out - Adam just performs, but he has no connection with the song. Carrie said that this is the first time ever that this song did not make her teary eyed. To me, it seems like he is an actor performing a song in a musical, not a singer singing a song at a concert. His disconnect is disconcerting, but at the same time, he would do great in Vegas.

Kris- Pride of Arkansas. . . I'm giving that one to Bill Clinton. But Kris can be second. What's Going On is a perfect choice for his style. Another song that could be on his album. Still though - a weak companion to Lambert's song. And another song that is important historically. Simon Fuller must be a total hippie. Also, I'm not sure I've mentioned this, but Kris is ADORABLE. That crooked mouth thing he's got going is just precious. Loved it. He was good and all, but totally at a disadvantage. He needed a showstopper type of song like Adam got, but he got one that sounded like something that some douche is playing on the quad with his buddies in an effort to pick up some freshman chicks. Plus, my favorite part of each season is when they give a contestant a song they have to sing, then criticize the song choice. Also, I love that Simon's shirt is unbuttoned to his navel. He is hilarious! The kids were like, What's up with his shirt? At dinner they were trying to impersonate his accent. It was awesome. Then I did Phoebe's impersonation of a British accent, a bit that has made Chip laugh consistently for like ten years now. Simon is right - give this round to Adam, but this is no fault of either contestant. The song choices were slanted. Have I mentioned that? Dear Simon: I would love to have Kris in my bedroom strumming along. What is the problem? Oh wait, I see what he's saying.

Lambert- He's going to sing the crappy single like he does, then Kris will sing it like he does, then it's up to us to vote for substance over style. I just hope this song doesn't mention unicorns and rainbows like Cook's coronation song did. Randy says, "You could sing the phone book! That wasn't the best though." BANG UP JOB by the judges tonight. Choice quotes from Chip: "This gives me a headache," and "That was a mess." Agreed. Also, Kara? Buh bye. Simon- Mountains and hurricanes- what? Oooh snap, Kara! But still- no magic rainbows. Next year's song needs to mention leprechauns. Yeah, not much to add here, except for the fact that 8 seasons in and the only winning song I remember is A Moment Like This. I am hoping for Adam to fail, but nothing personal against him, I just need to feel vindicated in the way I feel about him for some reason.

Kris- He just seems uncomfortable at first, and he misses some lyrics. Starts too low because he doesn't have Adam's range. But I don't care, because at least this doesn't give me a headache. It still doesn't make me happy. Also, DAMN Kris - good job on the wife selection! Too bad she is probably all Baptist and puts out once or twice a month. But if Kris wins, I'll smile when I flip past this on FM100. The judges are going to rip this- by far the pitchiest performance of Kris's career. He must hate singing this crap. You know, the few times that he was actually singing the song, he sang it better than Lambert and certainly connected with it better. Chip says, that was a mess too. That song is just a mess! Aw, Simon was sweet to him. And he smiled adorably! He's so cute!

It's 8:40 and I can't get through on the voting lines. I'll keep trying, though! I tried too! Tangent here - they get 3 numbers to call. How do you think the votes fall for each number? Lambert is 01, 03, and 05. Do you think they fall roughly 1/3 for each number? Does 01 get 40% and the other 2 lines get 30% each? Do you think more people call 05, thinking that they will have a better shot, or do they call 03 for the same reason? Do you think 01 is called most because it is first? I feel these are legitimate questions - when a proposal is on the ballot, more people will vote Yes than No, without fully understanding what they are voting for. This is why the wording is so important - also possibly the reason why gay marriage was defeated in California. If someone has an answer about the 01, 03, and 05 question, let me know! Until next season- Chockley out!