I have always loved Dystopian Future stories, shows, and movies. Books such as “1984” and “A Handmaid’s Tale” were great reads and I wrote a bit about it here: Dystopian Life.
Movies like “The Matrix” , “Brazil” , “Blade Runner” and even “The Fifth Element” show a technological gritty society. Always gloomy and wet with momentary rays of sunshine that bring forth a quick smile on one of the characters. I’m currently in the process of watching “Altered Carbon” on Netflix. Darker than most dystopian shows, but still very riveting.
Here we are, on the cusp of the new millennium, and I feel we are already in a Dystopian world. I drive into Vancouver for work and home again- a dreary wet world stuck in traffic. My vehicle’s dashboard has a screen showing me the radio station I am listening to or I can switch to navigation or many other options. My cellphone connects through my car as well. I can use voice commands to send and read messages or actually talk to people. My car warns me if I’m too close to another car or if one is in my blind spot.
That’s just my drive home. At home, my phone controls the music and media I play in three different areas around the house. Music from anywhere in the world can pump through my home. Nearly every electronic device can be connected. My wife has a Fitbit and it watches her heart rate and counts her steps. It connects to her cellphone and connects with other people as well.
So yes, I think we live in a Dystopian world. The future is now. Rain and technology- that’s my daily life.
A couple of days ago I mentioned my wife applied for a job: She Works Hard. She found out this afternoon that she got it!
She now works at Shopify starting as soon as we return from our trip to Tokyo. Tonight we are going out to celebrate. That’s my quick update. Gotta go and share the joy with my wife.
Twenty two years ago, when I was 19, I used to go to night clubs and dance. I never cared what I looked like. Probably because I was drunk and outgoing. I’m still outgoing and don’t care what I look like. So it doesn’t stop me from dancing. Even sober.
Eleven to fifteen years ago, when I worked at Chuck E. Cheese’s there was lots of dancing. That made the job fun and entertaining. Plus the bad cover songs being performed by the animatronic rodent and the tv screens ended up being a foundation for my children’s musical tastes. “Our Mouse, and His Name is Chuck E Cheese” sung like “Our House” by Madness still haunts me. But when the song Boogie Fever would come on- I’d bust out some moves after hours while we cleaned up pizza crusts and finger prints off the arcade games.
Nowadays, the only chance I get to show off my moves is at weddings or driving in my car. Sometimes I strut down the stairs like I’m reliving a moment from the film “Saturday Night Fever“- ready to hit the town and own the dance floor. But I usually just end up in the kitchen dancing around the stove as I make breakfast.
Ya, Disco is kinda my thing. As well as Star Wars. The Star Wars Disco is the greatest thing ever. I think it should be played at my funeral. Just sayin’… Disco is not dead. Yet.
On my drive to work today, these were a collection of the songs I listened to:
Peter Gunn by The Art Of Noise
It’s music that just sounds like it’s from a 1970’s/1980’s film. Jazzy and techy. Fun to drive to.
Mama Mia by ABBA
A great disco tune. One that I know the words to. I love singing to this and bouncing around in my car.
More Human Than Human by White Zombie
This song just gets me going. It has a killer beat and drums along.
My Sunday morning drive is usually an eclectic arrangement of fun music that I enjoy. The drive home was NEWS Radio. That my usual Sunday. The rest of the week is mostly talk radio and podcasts.
My wife has been running her own business for what seems like forever. Check out her website (that I helped design) at Ningen Headwear. She loves what she does. All of her hard work has paid for our vacations and the kids’ activities. I love her products and enjoy talking about them to everyone I know.
However there is a small change a brewin’.
My wife had a job interview on Friday. It was a Skype interview that lasted about 45 minutes. She did well enough that it was followed immediately by a secondary interview that involved problem solving skills. I hope that she nailed it.
My wife was a bit anxious and is having some mixed emotions about this. She never really used Skype before (neither had I) so it was a fun challenge to get it set up and see what it can do. She also expressed feelings of doubt in both her abilities to do this new job and in herself for having “failed” at her own business.
I reminded her that she didn’t fail at running a business. She successfully made something from scratch. I don’t see it as failing for trying something new by working for someone else. It’s time for her to change it up a bit. She will continue to work on her own business if she gets this job. She is passionate about what she does.
Fingers crossed she gets this job. It seems like a perfect fit for her. Now we wait… waiting is tough. But in the meantime she will continue to work from home making awesome hats and cosplay ears.
Like I did with my son two weeks ago and with my one daughter last week: Brony For a Day– I had a day with just my oldest child.
*BIG SIGH* The snow nearly killed our plans though. But we braved the weather and headed out. This was the view inside my car when we started:
It took two weeks to get to this point. You see, she is only a few months away from turning sixteen and doesn’t have time for dad. She is busy after school nearly every day and also has her own job working Saturdays. I got lucky today and the kids had a Pro-D day.
Our first stop was to buy hair dye for her. She has been begging to dye her hair for a few months now, so it was time to go shopping for a new colour. She chose indigo- I just finished doing her hair and she is really really happy with it.
Our second stop was Chapters. This seems to be a favorite for all of my children. I was here last week and the week before with my other children. Today my oldest offered to buy me a book in payment for the hair dye. Instead, I plan on just reading the books she bought after she is done with them. She spent $111 on books using gift cards she has accumulated over the past year.
She also got a wicked deal on a VR headset for her phone. Costing only $10. It fit in nicely with the theme of a couple of her books. After an hour or so in the store, we braved the snow once more to pick up her sister and headed out for lunch. We had some miso soup and green tea to warm us up.
My oldest and I haven’t seen eye-to-eye on occasion and we sometimes get snippy towards one another. In the end, our day was pretty enjoyable. I love the time I’ve taken to spend one-on-one with each of my kids over the past few weeks.
I just got beat up by my kids. A lot.
It started innocently enough with a Nerf battle. My 15 year old vs my 11 year old and I. Bullets sprayed across the living room. Butt shots and head shots galore. Laughing and screaming, and then…
It went too far. Body parts got hurt. Feelings got hurt. Rage kicked in. So it was time to clean up. But then more Nerf shots fired again. Round 2- ATTACK DAD!!!
Finally we were all too tired. And called it a truce. My kids had beat me. Bad. They chose to bury me with bean bag chairs and sit on them. These beasts were self proclaimed victors of the Castle! I was de-throned. No longer the king.
I was lost in thought driving home, as I often am. Sometimes I wonder how I even get home.
But it continued on even at home. I tried to start a blog post, but forgot where I was going with it. Then I began making a salad for dinner and added too much dressing that I needed to add another head of lettuce. During dinner I lost track of conversations and we ended our meal.
I was browsing my social media and ended up curling onto the ground for about thirty minutes when my wife told me to get up (after taking a picture). I got to a point that I am tired and dumb feeling. No idea how I got to this point, but I figure it’s time to go to bed.
Goodnight everyone. Maybe tomorrow I can focus better.? If not, maybe I could just sleep in.
I don’t like the winter at this moment. It means my car is dirty more often than it is clean. It feels like I’m neglecting Rogue One because I don’t wash it. But there isn’t any point to washing it.
First of all- it’s cold outside. So I don’t want to stand out there with a bucket of water and a hose.
Secondly- the sun is only out for a brief moment or two. That means cold nights and a possibility of rain or snow again. Which means dirty roads causing dirty car.
Thirdly- I’m not the only one driving around in a muck-colored vehicle. So I shouldn’t show off my bravery/stupidity of a washed car.
However, it is a gorgeous vehicle when clean. Maybe I could survive some frostbite and freeze my garden hose for another evening of joy until it gets dirty tomorrow morning driving to work…
It’d be totally worth it.
I find it weird when someone at work talks about me behind my back. Especially when it’s something nice- that’s even worse. I don’t do compliments well.
Turns out I’m making a good impression at work lately. I think it comes from the fact that I am honest and polite. Or maybe it’s because of my obsession with Star Wars. Or perhaps my use of movie quotes in daily conversations. Whatever the case may be- I’m not sure I like it.
But being kind and listening to others makes me feel good. If I do talk about someone behind their back, I will say it to their face as well. No point in hiding behind rumors and hearsay.
I like being nice though. I guess it shows and people talk. 😎
It was bound to happen, as it does every year… A lone Christmas Decoration was found six weeks later…
This time around it was much a larger piece than just an ornament or a bell. It was a serving platter. Forgotten on the piano behind some sheet music. Which is forgivable, because at least my children were still playing music. Unfortunately, they don’t tend to put the sheet music away until it is falling off the piano. My wife discovered the tray when she was cleaning around the piano this weekend.
And so ends the removal of our last decoration. It’s a sign that Spring is on its way. Hopefully the ice and snow take the hint and pack up soon for the season as well.
This morning my 13 year old daughter and I went on a Daddy/Daughter Date. It started with a trip to Chapters where my daughter bought $52 in Manga using her Christmas gift cards. There was so much to choose from, so it took us a little bit. When she was done, she made her way to the cashier. This time with no Anxiety.
Afterwards we went for a morning matinee movie date. She really wanted to see My Little Pony: The Movie. The theater was having a cheap one time showing today, so we went. We put on our Pony Ears (made by Ningen Headwear) and found a spot off to the side. My daughter didn’t want to sit in the middle of the auditorium and block any of the younger audience members views of the screen. She is always courteous towards others. We were probably the oldest father/daughter couple as well- but we love our animation. She also loves that she met Tara Strong at a convention years ago as well. Becoming a voice over actor seems like something that may appeal to my daughter one day.
MLP has been a part of my life for ages. Back in 1986, My Little Pony was on the tv in my home. I would’ve been ten and my sister was six. I had no argument with watching the show. In fact, I still remember playing with MLP toys with my sister and not being embarrassed by it. I guess I’ve always had a soft spot for the pastel ponies- I can still recite the theme song. So being a Brony for a short film today wasn’t a big deal.
After our movie we went for Phở. It was the first time for my daughter. We enjoyed our noodle bowls and talked about the film. We both agreed that it could’ve been better, but it was a nice treat just going the two of us. Shared moments like this last a lifetime. There’s nothing embarrassing about that. So put on some Pony Ears and become 20% cooler in the eyes of you child.
The other night, on the car ride to picking up dinner, my daughter and I were talking. And she was getting snippy towards me. After some discussion in our short drive, I found out the problem. My 13 year old daughter was scared to buy a pizza.
I had asked her to come with me in order to buy the pizzas. She explained how she didn’t want to talk to the cashier. She was unsure of money interactions. She was straight up stressed out by something that everyone does on a daily basis. She began to show signs of anxiety.
Interactions like this between strangers shouldn’t be difficult. Our daughter has done purchases and sales at numerous conventions over the years- so it surprised me when she told me she was anxious that night. It never dawned on me that this was different. So we rehearsed what she needed to say, how much the pizza would be, and how much change should would get in return.
To ease her mind a bit, I explained that I’m also scared. I am absolutely terrified of going to Tokyo next month. I’ve never been to Tokyo. I’m not going alone either, but taking my wife and three kids. Not only am I going to be in a foreign country- no one I’m going with understands Japanese. Plus I will need to keep a close watch on the kids. Make sure they are staying nearby while we use the trains and travel the streets.
In the end, my daughter did fine buying a pizza. I was with her, but stayed off to the side. I didn’t interject, help or correct her in any way. Afterwards she admitted that it was easy. A little more practice and she won’t need to rehearse her interactions ahead of time. Hopefully she can overcome moments of anxiety on her own.
She enjoyed her pizza with a sense of relief. Although buying pizzas for larger groups is a pain and requires note taking and spreadsheets at the best of times. Just don’t tell her that yet. We need to work on baby steps.
In mid December, I mentioned that our oldest had an interview for a job at a Fish Market: Next Generation of Milestones. I forgot to follow up, but she got the job and started within a few days of the New Year. She is loving it.
For Valentine’s Day she picked up a couple of lobster tails for my wife and I. In the past, I’ve bought a couple cheap frozen lobster tails. The kind that are $7-$9/each. A small side of shellfish to a plate of mashed potatoes. Our daughter went above and beyond. Onto her work tab, she put these two monsters:
When I saw them, I was floored. How the heck am I supposed to eat these? A pound and a half of lobster meat! It would just have to be eaten somehow.
And it was delicious. Even though my wife and I sent the kids off to bed in order to sit down for our meal, we couldn’t eat these tails without sharing. Two of our three kids loved it. Our middle child did not. I’m not sure why, but that just means more lobster for the rest of us in the future.
Our oldest with the job is excited about trying more varieties of fish and shellfish now. She is also learning the skills to prepare and serve fish. I’m proud of her and the fact that she loves her job. And she loves us enough to get us some tasty food as well!
I bought my wife one of her favorite flowers today:
She loves the multicolored roses. I try and pick up different blends whenever they are available. I used to buy them from a place called “Awesome Blossoms” but their shop has since moved. So finding a rose in blue and purple is a bit more difficult these days. My wife still enjoys the “fire and ice” roses that I get for her.
Today being Valentine’s and all, I also picked up some tropical flowers to go with the single rose. There was a small dumping of snow overnight, so I thought they would remind her of our trips to California and Hawaii. The flowers brought a smile to her face. (And allergies…)
A sweet moment today was brought to us by our daughter. She made us some origami flowers and card for this morning. She is getting excited about our family trip to Tokyo and is getting in the mood because practicing her paper folding. These flowers did not cause allergies.
I love that there is a sweet spot for romantic and kind gestures in our household. That makes my heart full. Have a great Valentine’s Day everyone!
We’ve all done it. You go on Facebook to creep out some name of a person just to see who they pretend to be online. I do this quite regularly. Searching is easy. And fun!
Facebook doesn’t want you to clear your “Search History” though. It seems that they like to access what/who you were looking for. I figure this is for advertising purposes. I’m getting really sick of ads popping up. Or even the “Boost your post” ads for a page or link you shared. And now “The Marketplace” where people sell their junk (like unwanted Craigslist ads).
Once Instagram and Facebook joined forces, the advertising is cross referenced. I see ads on Facebook for stuff I post on Instagram and vice versa. Maybe it’s time to drop both social media apps from my iPhone. They know too much. They know everything about almost everyone. Hey, they do know everything- maybe I should look up that girl from my Grade 8 year that I liked…
But why would I care to see what someone is like that I haven’t talked to in 30 years? That’d be kinda creepy. But only if I accidentally click “LIKE” on a photo by accident… I can be careful enough to creep…
My banana was happy to be eaten today.
Somehow, somewhere or perhaps even someone- bruised my banana. Brown spots created a mocking smile. But underneath it’s skin, it was still a perfect banana.
So I ate it.
The banana made me smile. Happy Banana. Happy Monday.
Our local microbrewery celebrated it’s second birthday yesterday. My son and I were first in line yesterday to get in. (When they opened two years ago, I was second in line.) I enjoy going to the Trading Post every couple of weeks. It’s a great atmosphere where I can meet up with friends and share a story or two. Yesterday was no different.
Being the first to arrive meant I could sit anywhere I wanted. So I chose a spot upstairs, as we usually do. Their Birthday beer was especially tasty. And I ended up having a couple. Lots of photos and social media sharing went on with everyone inside.
We were also given a special Two Year Stein to take home afterwards. Once I was home, my wife decided that she wanted to go out for a beer as well. A couple hours later, I returned to the Trading Post and had another beer.
As the sun began to go down, some live music started up. My wife and I enjoyed our date, but knew it was time to head home. We had to pick up our daughter from work and make dinner. My time at the brewery came to an end. Good thing as well. Three tall beers throughout the afternoon hit me pretty good considering I skipped lunch.
Having a fun day seeing friends, followed by a nice drink with my wife was a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Some good memories have been had at this place over the past two years. I hope for many more to come.
Blogging is fun. I do the writing mostly for myself, but it seems others enjoy reading about my life. From old friends to complete strangers- everyone has been relatively positive about what I share. Good feels.
I’ve also enjoyed online interactions with my fellow bloggers. Every week, I am interacting with more and more people. They are like Magical Internet Faeries spreading joy in my life. On this journey, I’ve been lucky enough to dodge the trolls.
Or perhaps the trend is swaying in the right direction? I have found lately that people proudly share more positivity, and say things like love conquers all or even hate leads to suffering…
Whatever the reason may be, I’m really happy to be a part of the online community. Keep up the good work universe and all you Internet Faeries who bring me joy! You know who you are.
The past couple of weeks I have run into a bit of a dilemma. I don’t plan what to do on my days off. I work four days a week and get three days off. You’d think I’d make the most of my time off.
One problem is money. I don’t want to spend anything excessive lately since we have a big trip planned for Spring Break. That’s the grown up thing to do. No need to put myself further into debt.
On my days off, my wife appreciates it if I take on the responsibility of rides for the kids as well as dinner plans. I love cooking, so this isn’t an issue. Except for trying to figure out what to cook. Rides for the kids isn’t that bad either. Even six months into the school year, I don’t know their schedule…
I’m just filling my time with internet browsing and naps. Which is okay, but doesn’t make me feel productive. I guess I could finish tiling the bathroom- the Project I started before Christmas- maybe…
Last night I saw a couple of my old stuffed monkeys. One was in my son’s closet and the other was hanging in my daughter’s room. Here they are:
These two little guys have been in my possession for nearly twenty years. The first one I had long before I met my wife. I would walk about with them hanging from my neck, arm or leg like an accessory. They are super soft and have perfect names.
The brown one on the right is named “Poo Flinger”. He was the first one I bought. Since monkeys throw poop, I thought it was perfect. Then his beige brother was purchased on a whim while on a date with my future wife at Toys R Us one day. She helped in naming him. His name is “Jizz Lobber”. Like when you you lob a tennis ball.
My children knew about the first one’s name and always thought it was cute. The second one was shortened to “JL” and the kids thought it was meant to symbolize us- their parents- Josef and Lee-Anne. They found out the real name last night. Not sure if they found it amusing or not.
Since the first thing my wife and I named together was our monkey “Jizz Lobber”- suddenly naming our first child Random was a bit more appropriate. Followed by her sister Darwin and brother Theory. I think each of them has fallen nicely into their names.
Including our original monkeys.
I flipped from doing three weeks of night shift onto day shift this past week. My body fought it hard. I was looking forward to seeing the day time and having dinner with the family every day. Dinners were delicious, but by the end of each meal- I was toast.
I was an old man at the end of every day crawling into bed by 8:30pm. Passing out and waking up before 4:30am. On my last night- I couldn’t fall sleep, then I didn’t want to wake up. Every alarm – I hit snooze. Just out of habit. Even though my alarms are set every ten minutes, the nine minute snooze messed me up.
Now I’m going to bed before my days off. I had to cancel plans with a friend because I knew, even though this is my “Friday Night”, that I wouldn’t make it past 10pm. Watching a movie in the theater at 9:30pm would be like paying cash for a nap.
A few years ago, we bought a 3D television for our bedroom. But we’ve never used the 3D function. It wasn’t until the other day that my wife mentioned we can play video games in 3D that I remembered about it.
I had hooked up the PS3 in our bedroom shortly after Christmas (when the PS4 took over our theater room). My wife recently re-discovered her joy for “Super Stardust HD” on our PS3. The other night she told me that the game allows for her to choose an option to play it in 3D. My first thought was “Far out man…”
I dug out the box of glasses that came with our tv. We never used them as I said, and of course they come with a small battery which is now dead in each pair. So much for playing the game in 3D last night. Those cheap plastic ones from the movie theater don’t work on our tv.
In a way, I wish the 3D was like it was in the old days. With red and blue making everything fuzzy to trick your brain. Although, I’d probably still not watch 3D shows. It’s not as immersive at home as it is on the big screen. Even then, last year we only saw about 3-4 films in the theaters. The shows just aren’t doing it for me lately. Unless it’s Marvel or Star Wars, I probably won’t fork over my hard earned cash.
Well, maybe for another Pee-Wee Herman film.
On Saturday I had my quarterly haircut. The main reason I get a haircut is because I don’t like to waste shampoo or hair gel. If I need to use a handful of either- it’s time to chop. Getting a hair cut every three months is just how I roll.
As I said before, I’m generally lazy when it comes to things like that. I look good after my Barber takes off a couple of inches. Now I’m looking better than ever.
Even the fellows at work complimented me on my haircut. Strange how something so simple as that can make you feel better. (Not that I was trying to get compliments from my coworkers). But my wife is happy with my look as well.
Throw on some dress pants, a collared shirt- and BOOM! I look like a grown up. I don’t like to put on dress shoes, so I still wear my runners. I need to remain comfortable in my old age. Only, I’m not that old yet. Those days will eventually involve white Velcro shoes…
I don’t watch a lot of sports as it is. So today, it didn’t matter to me that there was a foosball game on.
This is now the second year in a row that I haven’t watch the game. The only thing I really missed was the excessively unhealthy food I would make. I love my Deep Fryer. I even made Spam Fries the other day. Wow were those tasty A.F. Besides the deep fryer, we would make a spicy chili, sandwiches and tons of salty snacks. Of course, we would share with friends.
I do love a Superb Owl and can’t wait to go to Japan and check out an Owl Cafe. That is probably going to be one of the biggest highlights of our trip. But has nothing to do with football.
Go Sports Team!