Sunday, February 26, 2006


I didn't see much of the Winter Olympics, but the announcing seemed odd and not very good when I did catch some of it, and there seemed to be a lot more curling than I would have expected, so I guess this excellent review of NBC's coverage isn't undeservedly harsh. It sure is accurate.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Off the Scale

How gay am I for the new season of American Idol? In the past I've been extraordinarily gay for it, but since I've seen the 24 kids they're paring down to 12 for the official season, I'm going to need a new wardrobe of gym shorts and tank tops because I have gone completely Richard Simmons for AI.

In a typical season there are two great singers, maybe, and a total of five or six good performers. This year there are at least four excellent singers and most if not all of the top 12 will be capable of stunning performances each and every week. Katharine, Elliot, Paris and Sway are going to be unbelievable, and Lisa, Taylor, Ayla, Ace and even Kevin and Brenna are going to be fun to watch.

UPDATE: Fantastic AI separated at birth pics here (love the last two) and a video roundup of Simon's worst insults here. I could have sworn I heard him be more ruthless, but who knows.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

We Have a New Champion

This almost puts Moshzilla to shame. From Attu.

Meaningful Context

My old Journalism school pal Rogers Cadenhead makes an important distinction between journalists and bloggers:

Like many bloggers, I've had a lot to say about journalism over the years, and I internalized the self-glorifying notion that I practice a form of it here on Workbench. But after a few days of conducting interviews, checking facts and documenting all of my sources for an editor, I was reminded of a substantial difference between journalism and blogging that I had completely forgotten.


A blogger can feel good about his own standards of ethics and accuracy, but there's no cost for failing to meet them. Nobody gets drummed out of the blogosphere for getting something wrong, screwing over a source or writing things that bring shame upon your family. Making matters worse, your biggest mistakes may be rewarded by as much traffic as your best successes.

A working journalist has to worry about ethics and accuracy because your ass is on the line, along with that of your editors and the publication.

I can't think of a single blogger sued for libel or fired from a site over something he reported, and I've never read about one who did something fubar and thought to myself, "that poor sap will never blog again."

But as any reader of James Romenesko knows, professional journalists commit acts of career suicide on a daily basis.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

How I Started My Modeling Portfolio

Spinal Fusion Scar 2
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Here's the pic I promised, we haven't measured it yet but will soon and report. Very sore and stiff as you might imagine, but getting around pretty well. Will go into much detail about the experience tomorrow, I've overdone it today and must rest.

How 'bout them staples?

Saturday, February 18, 2006

I'm Alive

Just returned home from successful back fusion surgery, scar pictures and impressions to come tomorrow probably. Good to be home and thanks to all who called and visited, especially my awesome wife Deirdre and baby Sabrina, sweet sister Genie (who took a week off of work to stay with D and the baby and visited me every day, sometimes twice, and my wonderful mother, who drove up on day two and made a miserable day bearable. Also my good friends and neighbors Mike S. and Lew B., and of course their lovely wives. And although they couldn't make it down to Austin, I much appreciated the calls of my father and other siblings. You made a difficult time much, much easier and I love you for it.

More soon.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Here Come de Teefus

Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Now that Sabrina is expecting little baby teeth, she has decided Daddy's right thumb is her favorite toy. Daddy spends a fair amount of time making sure said thumb is clean and available for teething, because once you find a way to chill your child out for 15 minutes while Mommy takes a shower, you embrace it lovingly, like a sweet little baby.


Man is CGI getting good: check out this demo reel of water, fire, bubbles and other awesome graphics. Truly amazing. I was sure that one day we'd pass beyond the point at which a particular piece of video could be trusted as reality and not the invention of a smarty pants video tech, and I guess that day has come. I officially refuse to believe anything I see on video. So there.

Thanks to Dave at Garfield Ridge.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Have I Offended You? Good

Best roundup of Islamic-fury-at-Danish-cartoon reaction here, from vegemite-swilling Tim Blair's blog.

And don't forget to check in with Achewood, it's en fuego this last week or so. Start here for the Great Outdoor Fight episodes and hit the little red arrow to the right of the date to move forward. Well worth the effort, I tells ya. Don't forget to run your cursor over the strip itself for a hidden message that is often relevant to the story.

Friday, February 10, 2006

The Kiss of Confusion

Poor little Sabrina is teething already. Somehow we have not yet gotten a pic of her gnawing on her tiny fist, but I'll remedy that soon. I hold her on my lap and she mauls my thumb, or a knuckle, for as long as I can stand it.

Teeth already. She's eleven weeks old. None of her newborn outfits ever fit, and now she's growing out of some of her 6-12 month stuff. She's a monster, I tell you. A beautiful, amazingly sweet and magnetic monster.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


Hugging Aunt Genie, part 2
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
My sister Genie visited the other day and was magically able to chill Sabrina out after a substantial spell of unhappiness, and in the process got the first hug Sabrina ever gave. I love her little hands and hope to post a picture of them holding mine soon.

Genie: the baby whisperer.

Sunday, February 05, 2006


I don't watch The West Wing, but maybe I should. Oh, it still wouldn't be funny? Never mind.

Her Majesty is Displeased

Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
When I see this I think of a queen on her throne denying commoners the right to marry. I'm not sure why, but I do. Maybe it's the pout.

Sabrina is modeling one of the lovely outfits my sister Nancy sent her. Nancy is very kind to take time out of her busy schedule (she owns a veterinary clinic in a fancy part of Houston and spends a lot of her time operating on animals. I think she should specialize in doggie cosmetic surgery, very few dogs have the full lips they deserve.

Watch It

Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Sabrina gets the measure of her cousins Amber and Camille, who visited her in January with their mother Liz, my wife's sister. They seem to get a kick out of her and she sure does enjoy seeing them.

In this pic you can see how long her head is from front to back, just like Daddy's. I've never found a football, motorcycle or other rigid helmet that didn't crush my skull front and back but not even touch on the sides. Good luck with the headgear, honeypie. It's a jungle out there.

Friday, February 03, 2006

The Answer is Yes

The question: Does Chewbacca have a blog?

Thank you Thighmaster, who has a Jhoon Rhee obsession ("Nobody boddah me!"). I too am haunted by that DC-area TV commercial from long (30 years?) ago . . .

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Very Cool

Attu posts a link to a really fascinating set of color WWII pics, both Axis and Allies. Lots of good stuff in there, well worth the time.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Here Comes the Lip

Grumpy Baby
Originally uploaded by Uncle Mikey.
Sabrina is so sweet to give warning when she's unhappy. The lower lip pouts, and then you've got maybe ten seconds to figure out what she wants before she starts bawling. The great thing about this is that I've gotten pretty good at guessing what the problem is and therefore have been able to divert my little angel from her unhappiness as often as I have failed. A small blessing, but one that I welcome.

Please note that in the sidebar on the left of this page is a new link (SABRINA PICS) to my Flickr photostream, that's every pic I've ever posted to my Flickr account. Most of the recent ones will be of Sabrina, and I upload most of the good ones we take, so that's where you'll find the baby pics I don't post here. Enjoy, unless you're a liberal and you go too far into the archives and find some of the nastier anti-lefty stuff I've posted. Then I apologize. But honestly, if you are a liberal, you've got bigger problems than unflattering portrayals of your political leaders.