Friday, March 31, 2006


Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Sabrina seems to have blue eyes, or rather I don't know when they change if they are going to do so. They are a lovely shade and probably come from my wife or mother. Surely science can solve that mystery . . .

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Pretty Poodlebear

Happy Blue Baby
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Sabrina is loving her fuzzy blue terry outfit, one of many sent in an enormous box by our very sweet friends Lee and Ann Marie K. in SC.

American Idol - Feh

Crap show this week, with the exception of Paris who oversexed the Beyonce dance a little more than most people seem to like. She's a great performer so I don't mind, I just close my eyes to avoid the hoochieness. What was with Shakira and Wyclef lipsynching? Gross performance all around.

Lisa the Klingon got axed, as we all expected. Unexpected in the extreme was Katharine McPhee being in the bottom three. I admit I haven't voted for her in weeks and her most recent performance was boring, but she's still 10000000X better than Bucky, Ace or Pickler. I did enjoy seeing her without a fake stage smile. She's hot when she's mad.

Elliot's my man for the rest of the show. I'll try to vote for McPheever but there can be only one. The quickening!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006


While playing on her baby gym at 1434 hours on Wednesday, March 29, 2006, Sabrina rolled over from her back to her front in one fluid motion with no outside assistance. Then she immediately rolled back onto her back and smiled. Mommy and Daddy were very pleased and Fred, sensing their pleasure, barked a lot. Sabrina enjoyed the standing, barking O and is now having a late lunch.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Great, Now Cure Cancer

It's amazing what can be done with modern technology, isn't it? Maybe one day they'll come up with something more useful than a way for people to communicate with other drivers via digital pictures on wheel rims. Worth a peek if only to get a preview of what we'll be forced to look at on the highway soon.

Dragster Soul

Mandingo Funny Car
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
The usually hilarious online satirist Iowahawk gets serious for a moment with this fine post about African American drag racers. An excerpt:

Oval track racing -- including open wheel, sprints, and stock cars -- has always been a more blue collar phenomenon, evolving out of the county fairground horse tracks of the Midwest and South. Nascar shares this heritage, along with an additional link to moonshine runners in the segregated South. For obvious economic and social reasons, neither of these racing forums were conducive to Black participation.

By contrast, drag racing evolved with fewer cultural barriers. Like oval track racing it was a blue collar phenomenon, a natural extension of straight-line street racing by young guys in cheap homebuilt hot rods. Unlike oval racing, it developed largely on the postwar West Coast, a society less encumbered by the legacy of segregation. As a result drag racing was more or less born 'multicultural' and egalitarian; the roll call of hod rodding greats -- Xydias, Iskenderian, Hirohata, Pedregon, Karamesines -- reads like a passenger list from Ellis Island. And African Americans were there from its inception.

This is exactly the kind of thing bloggers do best: when someone with a lifelong interest in a particular topic feels compelled to write about said topic, they do the kind of job with it that a reporter could never do, even with a year to work on it. Blogging rules!

And how about that pic? The Mandingo Funny Car. Awesome.

Not Mine, but Cute Nonetheless

Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Someone sent me a silly email with a bunch of wacky baby pics and I enjoyed this one. Probably from Jeff S. in Dallas.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Well Said, Sir

Great new (to me) blog over at Neptunus Lex. Lex is a freshly retired F-18 driver who writes extremely well and has a ton of great stories to tell. Check him out.

I particularly enjoy the Rhythms selection of first-person naval aviator tales, found at the top right of the page between "Old Blog" and "Contact."

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Memories of Brooklyn and Hiroshima

Rogers Cadenhead went to a spring training baseball game at Dodgertown and found something interesting.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
I am completely powerless when in the presence of Sabrina's smile. This is terrifying because one day she's going to figure out how to use it as a weapon, and then I'm screwed. I hope my wife is immune.

I'm on Board, Permanently

Trust Gerard to see the genius in going along with gay marriage. I needed just three words to convince me, at the end of this excerpt:

You are simply failing to see the entertainment value for tens of millions of your fellow divorced heterosexual Americans. Instead, picture their deep and abiding pleasure when they get to unfold a comfy lawn chair, pop a cold one and kick back to watch a stream of four-cornered gay divorces carom through the courts.

Charles, there may be a lot of fuming and fussing and fighting and hissy-fits down at the old Family courthouse, but out on the lawn we'll just be kicking it, betting on which one of sixteen snarling coon dogs comes out of the pack with all four legs still on.

Do you doubt that these little contretemps will make for big box office on all 40 screens in the vast multiplex of the American mind? I have three little words that make one big pitch: "Gay Divorce Court."

Emphasis mine.

Biter Baby

Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Sabrina tries out her gums on Daddy's knuckle and gives us a view of that wonderful Doc Savage hairline. Gorgeous. She looks more like she did when she was a few weeks old than how she looks now. What a sweet little monkey.

Saturday, March 18, 2006


Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
It's taken me this long to get a decent smiling closeup of Sabrina, and even then my wife points out that it looks like our child has no neck. I assure you she has a lovely neck which you may have gathered from other pictures, but it does look a little scrawny to hold up her rather large head. And yes, "large head" is a compliment where I'm from.

Who'd a Thunk It

Bush went nutty with the budget and is the worst presidential big spender ever, we all know that. Or do we?

Funny what you find out when you really check your facts.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


I get why people don't like to see American Idol contestants trying Stevie Wonder songs. It can be a problem for them, and it does suck to see the panic-stricken look on a contestant's face when he or she realizes the song is too big to manage. But I love Stevie Wonder songs, and on the off chance one of these monkeys can pull one off I'm willing to suffer.

Here we go: Everyone meets Stevie and some, including my boy Elliot, start weeping. Stevie says what I've always thought: that anything that brings this many people "together in song" is a good thing, no matter how cheesy it can be at times. Everyone practices their song with Stevie and they show some of that before each performance.

Ace: Horrible. Butchers "Do I Do" in a way that makes us long for Mario Vazguez. Where's your frickin' album, Mario? Ace will not be going home, unfortunately.

Pickler: Doesn't know any Stevie songs (weird that she started crying when he came in, yes?) so she picks "Blame it on the Sun," a lovely but complicated song she kind of pulls off. She's turned from cute to cute and sexy and is working that. I'm still not sure if I trust her schtick, but she's not going anywhere this week.

Elliot: picks a fantastic song, "Knocks me Off my Feet," and does a decent job with it. Flubs a note for the first time, not a big deal. I'll be voting for him furiously after the show.

Mandisa: A serviceable "Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing" but not great. Everyone seems to be taken aback by the new stage. She's fun, though, and not going anywhere.

Bucky: I don't really dig this guy, he does an OK "Superstition" although the really raspy thing is wearing me out. His hair does indeed look like Jessica Simpson's, or as Ann Althouse says, Austin Scarlett.

Melissa: Struggles with "Lately." And forgets the words in front of Stevie and then all of us. Death knell, I hear you loud and clear. She does look a lot better, though. Thanks, stylist!

Lisa: does OK with "Signed, Sealed, Delivered" although once again her voice underwhelms. She doesn't have the power of any of the former winners. Looks great, though.

Chicken Little (Kevin): Butchers "Part-Time Lover" and still fails to make me hate him. What's that about? I can't see him staying around but he's already avoided the hangman more than once. I hope that streak ends Wednesday night.

Katharine: Love this girl. LOVE her. She's beautiful and she looks just crazy enough to be really famous one day. And she's got an amazing instrument. Today she shows some more of it with "Until You Come Back to Me" and the judges love her, although I hoped for a tiny bit more power on the highest bits. But I'm voting for her, and not just because she bent over in a low cut dress.

Taylor: It's funny, but nary a "Woo!" escapes when he's working with Stevie. It's like he can control them or something. But WOW does he kill "Living for the City." He's got that throaty growl down. Best of the night so far, and I'm not a Taylor guy.

Paris: I love this girl, and I don't mind the apparent sense of entitlement some others seem to despise, but I've never been as excited about her as when she did Gladys Knight. She was so fun and good that night, and hasn't really done it since. Tonight she takes on "All I Do" and has some fun with it, although I would much prefer it if she didn't try to Billie Holiday it up so much. She's safe.

Chris: When he says he's relieved to know Stevie wrote "Higher Ground" I cringe because the Chili Peppers version never did it justice, but when he performs he sings it Stevie's way and just does the arragement a la Peppers. Good for him, because Anthony Keidis has a voice like three asses in a dumpster. he does pretty well although I disagree with the judges that it's the best of the night.

Not too shabby.

PS: This sure sucks. I wish I had known, or rather that we all had. I loved Gedeon and was disgusted that Chicken Little bumped him off the show, and I'm sure that more people would have voted for him if they had known what a nightmare his life has been lately. Sorry Gedeon. I'll buy your CD.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006


Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
It's always sleepytime when you're three months old. Sabrina's a pretty consistent nighttime sleeper, but lately she's been rowdy after hours more often than my wife really enjoys. For someone who prefers sleep in the 9-11 hour range, she's done remarkably well with the whole never-really-resting-for-a-second-for-fear-something-bad-will -happen-to-the-baby thing. Not to mention, since my surgery, the being-the-only-person-who-does-aything-useful-like-change-diapers-or-carry-the-baby thing. What a trouper D is.

Ready to Bust a Cap, Apparently

Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
I love my daughter too much to go very far into her digestive tract details, but let's just say her mood is often tied to her ability to get things moving down below. Isn't everyone's?

She looks sort of threatening here. Watch out, here comes Sabrina!

Monday, March 13, 2006

Beyond Hilarious

Read it and giggle yourself silly.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Super Cool

Art with a purpose
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Take a look at this gorgeous collection of 3-D sidewalk art by British artist Julian Beever. Link from American Digest, where Gerard is, as usual, on fire.

Batman and Robin here is my favorite, but they're all fantastic.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Pretty Child

Serious Face
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
What a lovely baby you are, Sabrina. Your little cheeks are adorable, and you may well have red hair when you grow up. I wish you were less cranky this week, but baby that's life. You're entitled.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Most Excellent

I'm a big Oriana Fallaci fan, and Tigerhawk has excerpted a large part of her new book here:

From Spain, in 721 AD, they passed into the no less Catholic France. Led by Abd al-Rahman, the Governor of Andalusia, they crossed the Pyrenees and took Narbonne. There they massacred the entire male population, enslaved all the women and children, then proceeded towards Carcassonne. From Carcassonne they were to Nimes where they slaughtered nuns and friars. From Nimes they went to Lyons and Dijon where they pillaged every single church... And do you know how long their advance in France lasted? Eleven years. In waves. In 731 a wave of three hundred and eighty thousand infantry and sixteen thousand cavalry reached Bordeaux which surrendered at once. Then from Bordeaux it moved to Poitiers, from Poitiers it moved to Tours and, if in 732 Charles Martel had not won the battle of Poitiers-Tours, today the French too would dance the flamenco. In 827 they landed in Sicily, another target of their voraciousness. Massacring, beheading, impaling, crucifying as usual, they conquered Syracuse and Taormina the Messina and Palermo, and in three-quarters of a century (which is what it took to break the proud resistance of the Sicilians) they Islamized the island. They stayed for over two centuries, in Sicily: until they werre cleared out by the Normans. But in 836 they landed at Brindisi. In 840, at Bari. And they Islamized Puglia too. In 841 they landed at Ancona. Then from the Adriatic they moved back to the Tyrrhenian Sea and in the summer of 846 landed at Ostia. They sacked it, they burned it, and moving upriver from the mouth of the Tiber they reached Rome. They laid siege to it and one night they burst in. They plundered the basilicas of St. Peter and St. Paul, sacked both, and to get rid of them Pope Sergius II had to stipulate an annual tribute of twenty-five thousand pieces of silver. To prevent further attacks, his successor Leon IV had to erect the Leonine Walls.

Having left Rome, though, they descended on Campania. They stayed there for seventy years destroying Montecassino and tormenting Salerno. A city where, at one time, they amused themselves by sacrificing a nun's virginity every night. Do you know where? On the cathedral's altar. In 898 they landed in Provence. To be precise, in present-day St. Tropez. They settled there, and in 911 crossed the Alps to enter Piedmont. They occupied Turin and Casale, set fire to all the churches and libraries, killed thousands of Christians, then went to Switzerland. Here they reached the Graubunden valley and the lake of Geneva. Then, put off by the snow, did an about-turn and returned to the warm climate of Provence. In 940 they occupied Toulon where they settled and... Today it's fashionable to beat our breast over the Crusades. To blame the West for the Crusades. To see the Crusales as an injustice committed to the detriment of the poor-innocent-Muslims. But before being a series of expeditions to regain possession of the Holy Sepulchure that is of Jerusalem (which had been taken by the Muslims, remember, not by my aunt), the Crusades were the response to four centuries of invasions and occupations. They were a counter-offensive to stem Islamic expansionism in Europe. To deflect it, mors tua vita mea, towards the Orient (meaning India and Indonesia and China) then towards the whole African continent and towards Russia and Siberia where the Tartars converted to Islam were already crushing the followers of Christ. At the conclusion of the Crusades, in fact, the sons of Allah resumed their persecutions as before and more than before.

Good stuff. Link from LGF.


Fascinating article here about global warming.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Sabrina and Ollie

Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Oliver's been snuggling up to the baby more lately, and being pretty careful about it, so we've been letting them rub up aganst each other as long as Ollie's paws are pointed away from our little girl. He's a kicker.

Fred hasn't been on the bed much lately, and runs quickly off the bed when Sabrina fills her diaper in a particularly explosive fashion. I wish I could do that.

If She's Lucky, The Worst Haircut Sabrina Will Ever Have

A glimpse of the future
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
My wife cut her own hair once, as a child, which is something I always wanted to try but didn't. I hope it didn't look like this, which is part Frankenstein and part weirdo punk.

Oscar Breakdown

The best Oscar commentary I've seen yet here. Most definitely required reading, as are all of the links within. Excellent stuff.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Death to Paula

Enough already. Paula Abdul has never been anything like a benefit to American Idol in terms of analyzing performances and giving helpful advice - she generally does nothing more than parrot Randy Jackson's opinions, and every female guest judge has been ten times better than Paula at her job. It's pretty sad that someone with a terrible voice is in the position of judging these kids on their vocal skills, and to their credit none of them have made that observation on the air. It must have been tempting, though.

She's been hammered for most of the current season's shows, but last night was ridiculous:

Paula Abdul - make rehab your own.

The “American Idol” judge was incoherent on last night’s live telecast, bumbling lines and giggling like she’d just emerged from a Grateful Dead concert, leaving audiences, contestants and host Ryan Seacrest more confused than a homophobic Clay Aiken fan.

When Seacrest asked Abdul why two contestants received the fewest votes, she mumbled, head in hands, “Simon said because one of them ate pizza and the other ate salad.”

A shocked Seacrest responded, “You guys realize we’re on the air?”

Abdul got it together for a few minutes, but during the second round of cuts, she was back to her odd behavior.

“What did you tell me Simon?” she said, slurring her words. “What did you tell me? Simon gave me advice and said on “The X Factor” he always refers to a fortune cookie and says the moth who finds the melon - (laugher) - finds the corn flake always finds the melon and one of you didn’t pick the right fortune.”

Join me, won't you, in letting Fox know what a flaming turd Paula Abdul is.

Truly Amazing

Well worth watching: this video of an SU-30 fighter jet doing amazing things in flight. God that looks like fun. From Cold Fury.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

What Do You Want?

Not a fan of the camera
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Sabrina's not that happy about having her picture taken. I have failed miserably at getting a shot of her smiling because she generally stops doing so when she sees the camera. I need to be sneakier. Until then, isn't she gorgeous?

Baby Progress

Successful docking
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Our little sweetheart Sabrina has started grasping her little teething Sputnik, a gift from my brother David, and gnawing on it. She still prefers the knuckle of my right index finger, but will settle for the Sputnik. Fred is furious that there's a squeaky toy not available to him and has expressed his displeasure.

Sweet Sabrina has discovered a new passion: the Teletubbies. Frankly I'm starting to like them too. It's amazing how quickly you lose your aversion to children's programming once you have a child in the family. We don't want her to see much kiddie TV, and no regular programming or commercials for a long, long time. But she sure does get happy when she hears that Teletubbies song and sees the baby in the sun. Don't we all?