Saturday, September 27, 2008

Twitch Came First?

If you have seen me in the past few days, you may have noticed that my lower left eyelid is twitching. You were probably too polite to draw attention to it for fear of embarrasing me. Thank you. In fact, you will most likely deny it even after reading this. No really, you're too kind.

The muscle spasm is not continuous, but it is uncontrollable and occurs frequently throughout the day. It's making me quite irritable actually. It is embarrassing to be at the beach or town common and talking to someone when my eyelid suddenly decides to do the jig. These scenarios require very quick thinking.

Do I draw attention to it and hope that we can move past it with a polite laugh? This option might highlight the facial fandango that perhaps they hadn't noticed yet and hopefully never will.

Or do I ignore the twitch and distract the would-be gawker with another part of my body? I could just stamp my foot very loudly and exuberantly. This might work, but feels like a lose-lose situation.

Instead I would choose the safest option and blink both of my eyes repeatedly, commenting on how great my friend looks. "So great that I can't believe my eyes!" This attention deflection will only seem awkward for the minute or two it takes to wrap up the now doomed conversation.

I am also irritated by my eyelid's antics because it's uncomfortable. It feels droopy yet quivers as it unsuccessfully attempts to hold itself in place. (By the way, it's probably helpful in times like these that I no longer believe that the eyelid's primary responsibility is to prevent my eyeball from falling out when I'm tired. This surely would cause more anxiety). The quivering is rapid and chaotic, unlike normal eyelid behavior. I'm certain that we all experience a little muscle spasm occasionally, but it rarely lasts more than a minute. Imagine watching an entire news program contemplating the meaning of 'Eyewitness' as your face flips out.

This recent experience with my left eye reminds me of my late and beloved cat, Hoolie. My wife and I would laugh and joke when she was mad, because she would appear to be really agitated and repeatedly blink her left eye. This was typically followed by an unwarranted attack on my shoe, The Swiffer, or another cat. She was normally a sweet and gentle 25 pound Maine Coon cat, but once the blinking started it was all over. It was rarely obvious what had this cool kitty all worked up and what led to the eye blinking, but we laughed anyways (inappropriate).

These memories of my cat have definitely made me feel guilty about the teasing. So, please don't judge me too quickly. I always apologized and worked collaboratively with her to identify a likely source of frustration and explore other possible and safer outcomes. This approach was often unsuccessful and only resulted in more eye blinking and 'catattacks'.

But more than the feelings of guilt, these memories have made me realize that perhaps it was a muscle spasm that resulted in Hoolie's irritation and not the converse. I also now wonder if the blinking of her left eye was an attempt to conceal a twitching eyelid. I probably would have noticed had she not been stamping her paw so loudly and exuberantly.


I just learned from my son that the singular version of the cereal Kix is a kick, as in "can I have a kick in my mouth daddy?"

Friday, September 26, 2008

Razors Cut

I have been very busy and disappointed that I don't have more time to write. I have so many stories to share, but not enough time to put them in words. But, I'm trying! I always have at least six posts in the draft stages. So, please keep checking in. If you are new to my blog, please read some of my older posts.

In the meantime....

Razors Cut

Razor USA issued a recall for approximately 100,000 scooters this week. The reason? These particular Razors cut. This is not necessarily funny, because there have apparently been a dozen reports of injuries by Razor riders. Apparently, the vehicle has sharp edges that may result in lacerations. Some of those injured required surgery due to damaged Achilles tendons.

Speaking of the Achilles, is this what Razor's competitors were hoping for? Razors that cut? Isn't this what Razor engineers undoubtedly asked by executives to avoid? There certainly must have been a big sign in the lunchroom that said "We cannot, we repeat cannot, live up to our name. Do not design or manufacture parts that may cause Razor sharp cuts. Bodily injury is bad for the company image. And it's too late to change our company name to Really Dull Blade."

Since you are asking me, I will agree that the company's name is unfortunate in light of these recalls. I do not ride a scooter, but the name just seems terribly misplaced. I can only guess that the Razor name is intended to conjure up an image of a scooter cutting through the air or through traffic. However, I think that if scooters were designed to do anything but scoot they would have received a better name from the start. That said, I always thought that 'Skedaddle' was a more appropriate name.

Scooters scoot. Razors cut.

We ride scooters. We cut with razors.

I didn't get up in the morning and remove stubble with a scooter before jumping on my razor to cut through traffic on my way to work.

Anyways, you get my point. Of course there was a recall. These three and four wheel motorized skateboards were bound to injure someone with successful branding like that.

If Razor USA wants to regain their footing in the scooter market, I recommend that they change their corporate name to Skedaddle. I gaurantee that they will never get customers reporting that their Achilles heel was skedaddled on their scooter while cutting through traffic.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Business End of Canine Crime Fighting

Sometime during my childhood, between burning leaves with a magnifying glass and failing a quantum physics course in college, I decided that I wanted to be a scientist. I knew that someday my work in the genetics field would have application and relevance to the common suburbanite. For this reason, I was thrilled to hear the news that the field's work on canine genetics has finally paid off in a way that makes me proud. Recent developments clearly demonstrate the potential effect of this work on my daily life.

What kind of effect? Let me explain. In at least one city in Israel, DNA testing is being used to match dog poop with it's 'source'. Fines will be applied to any dog owner whose dog's feces are found on the ground in public areas. This is truly a small victory for the field of genetic testing.

Dog owners in that particular city are required to have their dogs' cheeks' swabbed by a city-appointed veterinarian. I would love to see a dog cheek swabbing event, but that will have to wait until the poop review comes to my town.

Canine landmines found around town that violate city ordinances will also be tested. Hopefully, there is a match and the dogowner receives a ticket with a fine in the mail.

This is brilliant! I plan to write a letter to my town government in Framingham and ask that they seriously consider this approach. I have polled my non-dogowner neighbors and they unanimously agree and have promised to cheer louder than official town laughter and town official laughter when I presnt this at the next town meeting.

But, I am not only determined to eliminate one particular Dalmation from fertilizing my yard. This dog tracking technique also has benefits for crime fighting. For example, let's imagine that my house was burglarized. I already don't like where this is going, so please stop imagining that now. Instead, let's pretend that my neighbor's house was robbed. He wasn't home and there aren't any known witnesses. However, a diligent CSI discovers Dalmation dog feces in my front yard.

Were the Dalmation's poop databased and analyzed for estimated time of "delivery", they might have themselves a witness. By the way, please don't be surprised if "poop databasing" is a household phrase someday because my work in the genetics field will have that kind of impact, I promise.

If the dog happened to do his business during or close to the time of the burglary, the police could ask the dogowner if they saw anything suspicious. The perfect scenario would be one in which the dogowner explained that he did see something suspicious, which is why he did not see the crime scene evidence planted by his best friend. Regardless of the outcome, you would have a complete "chain of custody" as follows:

Burglar --> Neighbor's House --> My House --> Feces --> Dog --> Dog owner (Witness)

A town that adopts "poop databasing" will not only help crime fighting but their efforts might also result in crime prevention. Would-be criminals would literally have to watch their step and beware of dogs everywhere. I hesitate to state the obvious, but sneakers can also be swabbed providing an additional opportunity for complete traceability in the chain.

Finally, I will recommend that the town not give up too easily on the dog owner traceability method and it's range of potential benefits. If the system is implemented and feces in my yard does not match a local dog or crime, I will politely ask at the next town committee meeting: "Can you please do a cheek swab on old man Rogers three doors down?"

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Accidental Pirate

I'm working on a short story...

Monday, September 22, 2008

Accurate Traffic

I have been listening to a lot of NPR lately. However, this morning I was bored with a story about art made from garbage and turned on a music station. I will admit, the button didn't respond at first for it had been awhile since I chose to listen to music on my drive. It was background noise more than anything as my mind was on the day ahead.

However, my brain did tune in long enough to hear one particular phrase designed to fill the airways where the broadcaster had nothing else to say. There was repeated use of the phrase "Precision Traffic" to refer to their update on the Boston area roadways.

Precision Traffic. They have decided to call it by this name, because there is one statement that they can say with repeatability and reproducibility: "There is traffic."

The Precision Traffic team does their best with the helicopters and speed-dialing "alert listeners," but I'm often surprised at the accident that was not reported or the one that I never saw. There is traffic, but it will be very different by the time I get there. There is always traffic, hence the precision statement and the overly confident voice-over artist.

As a scientist and engineer, I reserve the right to briefly explain the difference between precision and accuracy without getting harassed by friends or strangers or strange friends. Actually, I'll make everyone happy and simply cut and paste an explanation from Wikipedia instead.

"Accuracy is the degree of closeness of a measured or calculated quantity to its actual (true) value. Accuracy is closely related to precision, also called reproducibility or repeatability, the degree to which further measurements or calculations show the same or similar results." Got that? Good.

Therefore, I want Accurate Traffic. I want someone to tell me exactly where and when things will get better or worse for me. Perhaps this is selfish and unrealistic. But if a radio station really wants to boost it's ratings, they should listen to this particular customer. Traffic reports should sound like this:

"Accurate Traffic on the 3's!

Tyler from Framingham - you left WAY too late. Now, you will have to sit behind a huge line at the toll plaza with a thousand other sleepyheads that couldn't get it together on time. Had you gotten up earlier, you would have also missed the four car accident that is about to happen in about 5 minutes and approximately 10 cars in front of you. If you drive a lot faster, you might miss it! But, there's a sweet spot that you don't want to be in! Your zipper's down, you have Cheerios stuck to your elbow, and there are two pacifiers in your pocket. Good luck explaining to your boss why you're late for your annual performance review, slacker. Another Accurate Traffic update in 10 minutes!"

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Pinching Coffee Cups

In my house, a cafe-bought cup of coffee is an important unit of monetary measure. It is used as a way to describe the cost of something else or how much was saved.

For example, we recently considered cancelling the newspaper. We realized that this was costing us the equivalent of 7 cups of coffee per month. However, the savings at the grocery store that would result from coupons retrieved from the paper should equal or exceed that for it to be a justified expense. For example, last week alone I cut coupons worth at least 20 cups of coffee. I had to eat a lot of cereal and frozen dinners this week to cash in on those savings.

Gas prices these days, huh? The recent increase and subsequent fall of gasoline prices is killing me. From a cup and half up to two cups and back down again is not good for the blood pressure. Now that the gas prices are down again, I'm driving more. To the coffeeshop.

There's a line in our budget that converts savings to coffee cups. This makes it significantly easier to find coffee cups each month. More specifically, I recently cut out all personal hygiene products. You won't complain too much when that latte is on me, will you?

Friday, September 19, 2008

Got Broccoli?

10 easy steps to making Broccoli Milk

1. Boil 3 broccoli crowns for 60 minutes until water is green.
2. Place a strainer over a large pot.
3. Pour the broccoli and green water into the strainer, collecting the green water in the pot and the broccoli in the strainer.
4. Eat the green mush that was once broccoli.
5. Resist the temptation to ask yourself why you are doing this or why I wrote this. The answers will leave you feeling empty despite the aforementioned snacking on green mush.
6. Return the pot with green broccoli water to the stove and turn to High heat.
7. Boil until all water has evaporated, leaving green broccoli film on the bottom of the pot.
8. Remove from heat.
9. Pour 1 quart of whole milk into the pot, and stir to re-suspend broccoli film.
10. Pour into several glasses and chill.

Broccoli milk.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Sharing the "Yay"

All parents know that teaching a child to share is an essential part of parenthood. It's in the job description, listed right between organizing fun playdates and establishing a laundry process designed to rival any major hotel chain. Sharing is a skill that is properly honed on the playground, at the daycare, and at home.

Sharing with others is a skill that children will apply throughout their lifetime.

Fortunately, most of us mature with age and compromise does not always result in a tantrum. Although sharing can at times still be difficult, we learn to control our emotions. But, let's imagine for a moment that we don't develop self-control. That last donut in the lunchroom could result in a midlife meldown by hungry colleagues. The good seats at a work seminar could be the cause of a major crying fit by managers and employees alike.

My home is not immune to the challenges in teaching kids to share with each other. Naturally, my son had a difficult time adjusting to the arrival of his baby sister. But, the easiest way for him to manage this was to simply ignore her. This lasted only several weeks until he most likely realized that we didn't get her at the library with the Bob the Builder DVDs nor would she be returned in the dropbox. Sharing then became much more difficult, as sibling rivalry should. Naturally, toys are one of the first objects that children must learn to share.

My wife and I have learned to apply Standard Operating Procedures to our family's sharing protocol. When a toddler scuffle erupts over a toy, we calmly explain that the toys are to be shared and they are expected to take turns with the toy that is most coveted in that particular moment. This interaction occurs often, because typically my daughter wants anything that my son possesses at any given time. Therefore, the following conversation can be heard often in our house.


Me: "What happened?"

Cian: "I want the Compeetateeter. Baby Shea has daddy's phone," clinging to a toy computer and pointing at my previously lost cell phone.

Me: "We share our toys. Shea, play with my phone for another minute. Cian, you have another minute with the computer before you give it to your sister."

Cian and Shea in unison: "Ok."

This works almost always. However, recently the concept of sharing has reached a new level. A few months ago, Shea started to dance to music with her brother. Cian felt that dancing was not to be shared and promptly said so. "My dancing, Shea!" Although we briefly discuss how the dancing is to be shared, Shea (not surprisingly) becomes less interested in her dance partner and finds a new activity. She still dances with her brother, but only when he's in the mood to share.

Last weekend, we entered completely new territory with regards to sharing protocol. As a family, we have a ritual of saying "Yay!" when we are driving and pull into the driveway upon returning home. On this particular occasion after the celebratory cheer, Cian firmly stated:

"No, Baby Shea. My Yay!"

My wife and I looked at each other, uncertain of how things could have evolved this far. My daughter copies and my son copyrights. The conversation could have gone like this:

Me: "What happened?"

Cian: "I want the Yay. Baby Shea has Hooray," clinging to the Yay and pointing at my previously lost Hooray.

Me: "We share our cheers. Shea, play with my Hooray for another minute. Cian, you have another minute with the Yay before you give it to your sister."

Cian and Shea in unison: "Ok."

Cian: "Yay!"
Me: "Sweet."

But, instead we had a brief discussion about it before we all shared the "Yay."


Chop. Chop.

Three women in their golden years tied themselves to a crab apple tree earlier this week in Shrewsbury, MA. The fiery old women were protesting a plan at their housing facility that involved the removal of said tree. The women held onto a yellow rope that wrapped loosely through each of their hands and the would-be paper. I fully support their cause, for unnecessary removal of any living creature is worth fighting against. Especially, when the tree is being removed to make room for a dumpster.

On the nightly news, the women confidently stated their intentions. They will stay tied to the tree through breakfast, lunch, and dinner (which starts at 4:00). They will only leave the tree to sleep.

I am surprised that this even made the news. I am not supporting the removal of the tree but if I were a city authority that did, I would plan my day like this:

Morning: Sharpen chainsaw blades.
Early Afternoon: Respond to questions to the media.
Late Afternoon: Say goodnight to three nice ladies.
Evening: Chop. Chop.

But, instead I will make a proposal to these wildlife warriors. Instead, attach yourselves to the dumpster. Also, make bold statements about preserving the natural environment of trash receptacles and the imbalance that may occur if the dumpster is moved. That would be news.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Dear General Motors

Dear General Motors,

I highly recommend that you fire the advertising firm assigned to your Chevrolet brand. Granted, over the years they have produced memorable jingles. A Google search informed me that you had great success in the 1950s with a radio song called "See the USA in Your Chevrolet" sung as a duet on a musical variety show. This was last century so I would like to instead draw attention to a personal favorite from more recent years, "Have you driven a Chevy-y-y-y lately?" In the spirit of full disclosure, I regretfully admit that when this commercial was popular I bought a Ford instead. Sorry.

Despite your ad team's continued success at branding through radio advertisements, I am disappointed in their recent oversight displayed in a commercial for your new electric car, the Chevy Volt. It begins with an announcer saying "Ok, Listen." This request is followed by an extended moment of silence. The first time I heard the commercial, I didn't realize that it was silence and thought that I was missing something. However, the second time I listened to the commercial I followed your suggestion and listened to the silence and confirmed that it was in fact silence.

The announcer then returns to say, "That, my friend, is the sound of the future." This is where disappointment sets in. A proper Internet search would have revealed that silence is not the sound of the future. The future will be noisy and you need to know this now. A legislative committee in CA is currently working on recommendations for how to make hybrid and electric cars noisier so as to be heard by the blind. A noble cause indeed, but with potentially interesting results. For more information and very objective commentary, please see my recent post on this topic:

Once you have fired your advertising team, please consider re-hiring some of your recently laid-off engineers from one your SUV divisions to make your new electric cars noisier. I recommend an external speaker system that produces a gass-guzzling sound. Guzzling certainly does make a sound, right? The law enforcement officials hired to enforce this new legislation will not be suspicious, I'm sure. For this project, I recommend someone from your Suburban line. However if your budgets require something with less development costs, you could try baseball cards in the wheel spokes. That, my friend, is the sound of the future.

Disappointed in Framingham

Work gets in the way

I have a few posts in the works, but none ready to publish yet. Probably tonight or tomorrow...

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Breathing Right

Every night before bed, I don a Breathe-Right strip. These adhesive plastic pieces are also described by my alphabet-obsessed son as I's, as in "Daddy, you have an 'I' on your nose." These brilliant inventions are designed to open your nasal passages by sticking to the skin on one's nose while simultaneously working to return to it's steady-state two-dimensional flatness. This results in an unnatural stretching of the personal breathing apparatus. While the physics of this interaction are enough to throw one's nighttime chi out of alignment, it works wonders for the sleeping nose.

I'm sure that you have seen the commercials. My favorite advertisement is the one in which the inventor of these midnight miracles discusses the history of the strips. He shows earlier attempts at nasal aperture enlargement, including a tubular-shaped implement of torture that looks like a piece of the Ted Williams Tunnel. Designed to go inside the nostrils, the side effects surely must have included unexpected glimpses of the brain by anyone standing within a few feet.

This product is sold in two sizes: Small/Medium and Large. Technically, that's three sizes but apparently the small noses simply need to adapt. However, I learned that this is not easily done when I accidentally purchased the Large strips. If they were any larger, I would have started hearing better too.

The product is also sold in two colors: Clear and Tan. The tan strips are skin-colored so that one isn't too embarrassed when they happen to run into someone while they're sleeping. The clear ones are made from different materials and designed for sensitive skin. I once made the wrong decision with regards to color too. I balked at the idea that I had sensitive skin, until I nearly ripped my nose off of my face with the tan ones. After a few days, I was checking the adhesive side for parts of me. Although my search and rescue efforts always came up empty, my nose was starting to bleed a little. It was time to donate the tan ones to someone with leather skin and purchase the clear ones.

There are a couple possible reasons for why I need these devices to sleep better. I will now frustrate at least half of my readers by explaining that the first reason is unknown. In fact, I can only speculate that I may have been born with a deviated septum or smaller-than-average nostrils. Growing up as a child, I was a mouth breather. My parents and teachers would ask me to close my mouth and breathe through my nose so as not to catch flies. While this sounded like a perfectly great idea to anyone listening, I simply could not do it without feeling like I was slowly suffocating. Therefore, I breathed with my mouth open and perfected my bug dodging skills.

There is another possible reason, one that I am not proud of, for why Breathe-Right strips make their way to my shopping cart each week. I have always enjoyed making people laugh and until recently, I could not do this with words alone. Therefore, a few neighborhood kids could barely contain their laughter when I proved to them that I could make myself sneeze by hitting myself squarely and forcefully on the bridge of the nose. Unfortunately this performance, along with telling classmates that colored paper had flavor, did not make me more popular or smarter. In fact, I'm sure that a sore nose and a belly full of rainbow-colored construction paper did exactly the opposite.

But for the purpose of keeping my reputation as an intellectual, we will agree that I was born with a physical limitation that requires me to implement the 'I'. Now, there are few things that bother my wife more than the following statement spoken early one recent morning: "I lost the Breathe-Right strip." I'm not sure if she's worried about the adhesive or what the adhesive took with it, but she feels that it's a personal hygiene item that should be properly inventoried at all times. To be honest, I was also concerned that the strip had disappeared without warning. I looked on the pillow, under the pillow, on the sheets, under the sheets, on the floor, under the bed, on the wall, on the end table, on the wall again, and on the alarm clock. The strip was nowhere to be found. I ran to the mirror to confirm that the strip had not attached itself to some other part of my face or upper body. Check.

A couple days passed, and even with the help of a 3 year old alphabet detective and a very determined spouse, we were unable to find the strip until this morning. While in the produce section at the grocery store, I sensed my foot sticking to my sandal. Unable to ignore it, I leaned against the apple display and reached into my shoe to discover the strip stuck to the bottom of my foot. With fingers pinching it tightly, so as not to let it escape again, I walked briskly to the men's room where I promptly flushed it goodbye.

After washing my hands, I returned to shopping in the vegetable section. A few moments later, it occurred to me that perhaps the strip was not mine after all. Although this was a disgusting thought, I dismissed it and called my wife.

"I found the strip," I said.

"So did I," she replied.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Pink Invasion

"Dude. They're pink." My friend interrupted me after several minutes of my own audible speculation that perhaps my khaki pants appeared to have a light red hue as the result of poor lighting or even my aging eyes. He was right - they were pink. Yet, I continued.

"You only think they are pink because I have biased y-" He interrupted again.

"Dude. Pink." In this case, Dude meant "Shut up while I'm being honest with you" and pink meant "pink." I trusted that my friend, a chemistry professor, knew his colors.

Earlier that day, I ran out of the apartment in my usual flurry of alarm-ignoring, coffee-making, email-reading, cat-feeding, coffee-drinking, bagel-eating, shower-singing, clothes-rummaging, teeth-brushing activity. I skipped down two flights of stairs and into the morning sunlight as I started my ten minute walk to the subway.

Given the speed at which I got ready for work that morning, I wasn't convinced that I had dressed properly for work. A quick self-examination revealed a red button-down shirt, khakis with slightly frayed pant legs and perma-crease from countless meetings with an iron, not-quite-khaki-enough brown socks, and scuffed up Timberlands. I stopped at the street corner.

Are my khakis pink?

They're pink. Or I am overdue for an eye exam? Or is the sunlight reflecting off of my red shirt, creating a pink illusion?

It's an illusion. A pink specter. On my pants.

Ten minutes later as I sat on the subway car, I started obsessing again. I called my girlfriend at the time.

"Did you wash my pants when you were visiting?" I asked.

"Yes, I hope you don't mind," she said cautiously.

I didn't mind, yet. "Did you wash it with anything red?"

"Maybe. After the first wash, it doesn't matter anyways," she said confidently.

"It matters."

"It does?" she queried, now in a tone less confident.


It was about 20 minutes later that I realized how much it mattered as I listened to my friend plainly state "Dude. Pink." It was a phrase that I said to myself all day as I worked in the lab, gave tours of the Center, and walked around the college campus where I worked.

I didn't realize how pertinent this experience was until many years later when the same girlfriend (now my wife) and I had our second child, a daughter. Her birth marked the beginning of an era that I fondly call "The Pink Invasion." Who knew there was enough pink dyes and fabrics in the world to make so many pink onesies, bonnets, and dollies?

Never again will I wear pink khakis, which is why there are now three laundry categories in my house: Whites, Colors, and Pinks. Occasionally, I will unload the washing machine to discover that a pink sock or red shirt had been smuggled in with the khakis. Fortunately, this has never again resulted in an unexpected khaki color transformation.

Please don't get me wrong: I do not mind the color pink and I do not color-discriminate. It's the ambush that causes me anxiety. I feel strongly that I should be able to grab a pair of pants from my dresser drawer and be confident that they are the same color that they were yesterday. But what I fear more than any surprise color change in my wardrobe is the sincerity yet finality of one particular phrase: "Dude. Pink."

Double Quantity

The microwave at work has a button labeled "Double Quantity". I can confirm that it doesn't work. In fact not only was my sandwich the same size after pressing it a few times, but it nearly caught on fire.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


This morning, I was accosted by an over-caffeinated Starbucks employee.

"Want to try coffee in high def'?"

"High def'?" I asked.

"Not deaf, as in not hearing," she replied with a giggle.

"Thanks for the clarification."

"It's the best coffee you will ever taste. And it's a single cup brew, so it's extremely hot. Please try it."

I held the small dixie cup, half full of scalding hot coffee from "The Clover." After a few minutes, I tried it. It was good coffee, that's for sure. Is it worth the extra dollar or so? Definitely not. Granted, I didn't take the time to lighten and sweeten as I typically do with my coffee. Therefore, I will probably try it again and most likely pay for it with a gift card.

In the meantime, I will pay less for my version of "basic" coffee while I wait for the HD version to come down in price. Hopefully that will happen before I start to see commercials warning the general public that "basic" coffee will soon be unavailable. Perhaps it will show a countdown in days, minutes, and seconds along with a doomsday picture of cafe patrons looking puzzled as the contents of their coffee cups unexpectedly disappear. "Don't be caught without high def."

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Crossing Gaurd

This morning, I nearly rear-ended the car in front of me. I was fiddling with my new CD instead of watching the road. Mea culpa, mea culpa. When I looked up, I was quickly approaching the car in front of me. I slammed on the brakes and the tires squealed. I'm awake now and my Starbucks craving was displaced by an aversion to near-death.

I expected the unexpected this morning as kids, parents, and teachers were adapting to their new schedules on this first day of school. However, I was running late because of my own son's "first day" event and was surprised that I ran into trouble. But, as the traffic let up and I approached the next intersection I noticed the source of disruption. A crossing gaurd was apparently.... crossing the street. She was walking very slowly away from the intersection and with a limp no less. Was this poor planning or does the crossing guard need one of her own?