So Much Stuff I Can't Recall

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Skyyyyyy Piiiiiiiilot

Phil continues his aerial supremacy in the game Crimson Skies. Awhile back I blogged on his successful completion of one of the game's 24 missions. Now he's completed three more missions:His next mission involves shooting down fighters, including an ace pilot, and then destroying a submarine.

Fun. Fun. Fun.

Mikesell : 4:29 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Run for the Borders

Hey, new Borders coupon out this week: 20% off any thing (that's any one thing, with some restrictions).

Last month's was 20% of a book.

So this would be different.

Coupon expires 10/4 (good buddy).

Mikesell : 11:39 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Monday, September 27, 2004

Fishin' Phil

Last Christmas Phil got a Spongebob Squarepants fishing pole and this afternoon we opened it up and took it down to the lake. Here's some pictures:*That's his Plankton casting plug, to help him practice casting.

Mikesell : 7:43 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Movie-Goin' Phil

Phil and I went to the movies today for the first time since he slept through Shrek when he was about two. Coincidentally, the movie he saw this afternoon was Shrek 2.

Phil sat in his seat until the final dance number when he ran up to the front of the theater to boogie down. We'll have to wait until the DVD comes out to find out what happens to Donkey and Dragon, since we didn't stay through the credits (shouldn't of bought the big soda to share).

Good movie. Good times.

Mikesell : 8:15 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Friday, September 24, 2004

Weekend Homework Assignment: Book Review

Well, now that school's back in session it's time for a little homework. Read my book review of Tony Hillerman's The Fly on the Wall.

I've moved on to a novel by James Patterson, When the Wind Blows; I'm kinda hoping the book's a stinker (the other books of his I've read have been mixed bags) so I can title the review "It blows all right" and the blog entry "Thar she blows: Another book review." I don't think I can use a "blows" pun if it's good.

Why you should read my review of The Fly on the Wall: If you've been following the CBS memo flap - and who hasn't - you know all about what technology was or wasn't extant in the early 70s. While avoiding the political angle, I look at what else passed for high tech way back when. It isn't pretty (the tech; you can decide for yourself if the review's pretty after you read it).

Mikesell : 9:45 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Thursday, September 23, 2004

Another Gadget Review

The other day I bought a gadget called 20-Q (a Twenty Questions game by Radica). It's a great little gadget/toy. I've already given several as gifts and may do so again this December (points I made in the review). Will you be getting one? Better start behaving.

Why you should read my review of 20-Q: In the event you aren't blessed with one of these this Christmas, I include a URL where you can play it online (but that's no reason to stop behaving).

Mikesell : 6:53 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Monday, September 20, 2004

Don't Miss This Deal

There's only a day left in the latest "save 20% on a book" deal at Borders, so don't miss your chance to save.

Phil and I stopped in at the Eugene store (I'd say "the local store," but it's really not) this afternoon. He wanted Nuclear Physics: A Preschool Primer, but I reminded him that Christmas is coming and to put it on his Santa List. I was stymied as to what to get until I saw Baudolino, by Umberto Eco, which has been on my Santa List for the past two years. It was marked down to $5.99, so even if they hadn't accepted the coupon I wouldn't be out a whole lot. But they did take the coupon and I saved $1.20 and got it for $4.79 (original retail was $27). What a deal for me.

Don't miss out on your chance to steal a deal - the coupon expires tomorrow.

Mikesell : 11:05 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Birthday Party Double Header

Yesterday Phil went to a birthday party for his friends, Zachary and Lauren Griffith (ages 3 & 5). I thought Zack was turning 4 and Lauren 7, so their gifts have a bit of growing room in them. Contrary to rumor (which I started myself), I did not get them handguns to make sibling rivalry more interesting.

As the photos (and blog entry title) show, there was a baseball theme:

Phil had a great time, as evidenced by his general crabbiness from about five minutes before the party ended through the rest of the day. Fortunately we caught a break and he fell asleep when we were about halfway home from town (God is good).

Mikesell : 11:43 PM : 0 snarky remarks

A Tale of Two Johns

Philip got ahold of the camera again and took this mini photo-essay on the theme of Johns:  1   2

Mikesell : 11:31 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Thursday, September 16, 2004

I Spy a Book Review

While we were down in Southern California the other week, I picked up four I Spy books (kinda like Where's Waldo, kinda like trying to find a AAA battery in the junk drawer) at the outlet mall in Camarillo. All four are available on Amazon, so look for the other three to be reviewed eventually. I Spy Ultimate Challenger was a bit of a disappointment; not entirely a disappointment, but ultimately not as challenging as I'd hoped it'd be. There's more as to why in the review.

Why you should read my review of I Spy Ultimate Challenger: I go into detail about the book's shortcomings, as well as exploring what exactly "ultimate" means. Plus, with the help of Mssrs. Strunk & White I deftly avoid the hideous less/fewer trap. That's worth the price of admission right there.

Mikesell : 3:15 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Monday, September 13, 2004

Me First Dollar

Y'know how sometimes when you walk into a business they'll have their first dollar framed over the till? Well, this post is that framed dollar.

After 2 weeks with the Google ads, I've already earned my first dollar (actually, I'm up to a buck-ninety-six).

Hopefully you've found some good info, those of you who've clicked on the ads. I've actually had some come up that I've been tempted to click on; but, alas, that violates the rules of the game. So, thank you for your support.

Sure beats selling seeds.

Mikesell : 12:14 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Friday, September 10, 2004

Welcome to Thr'Philville

While in Ventura we bought Phil a Batman Rollercoaster toy and used it to bribe him into good behavior (you can have the toy when we get home if you behave yourself). While it didn't work as well as we'd hoped, we let him play with it anyway.

Right now we have his Thomas the Tank Engine set built around part of it, making an extremely small (both in size and scope) amusement park (the amusement is also limited). Here are some pix:

*Batmobile is not actually in action here (unlike in Action 1); there's a little straw jamming the track, holding it in place. The leap is actually a leap, no hidden wires were used.

Mikesell : 3:21 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Cracking 4000

In the latest Amazon reranking I jumped from 4233 to 3975 - my first time under 4000. Yay!

If you haven't voted on a review lately (or ever), please check them out. Links are over to the right as well as in blog entries with reasons why you might want to read the review.

Mikesell : 3:17 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Thursday, September 09, 2004

No More Vacation

Well, vacation is over, which means back to more book reviews. I know - I wrote one review while I was in Ventura; I'm just a workaholic, I guess. Tonight we have two for your perusal.

The first review is for John Sandford's stand-alone novel, The Night Crew.

Why you should read my review of The Night Crew: I use the phrase "manly-men." Unless you are a "girly-man" you will read my review right now.

The second review is for Dorothy L. Sayers' first novel, Whose Body?. Although I read this book before The Night Crew, I submitted the review for TNC first. Must be the jet lag. In other news, I've only got 4 more Sayers novels/collections to go before I've read them all. I believe they give golden monocles to people who finish the series.

Why you should read my review of Whose Body?: I confess to being a "backwards individual" - read the review and find out why.

Mikesell : 9:47 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Coming Home

As we left Dina's folks' place yesterday we took this picture of Grammy & Poppa with Phil.

Then, on the plane from LAX to SFO Phil got his hands on the camera and took these pictures:

Mikesell : 1:46 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Phive Philip Photos

Phil got his hands on the digital camera again today and snapped a couple dozen pictures. Five of them came out pretty interesting. These are they:With us returning home tomorrow morning and the generally lived-in condition of the house, these are likely the last indoor shots Phil takes for awhile (at least that get posted).

Mikesell : 9:23 PM : 0 snarky remarks

California "Cuisine" Hat Trick

As anyone knows who's moved somewhere from somewhere-else, there are restaurants that you can no longer get to after the move. Such was the case when we moved to Oregon.

This afternoon I made it back to three of them. I went to:

It's called a hat trick, cause after you're done eating at the three places you wind up barfing in your hat. Not really, and I actually did walk the two blocks from Weinerschnitzel to In-N-Out and back again.

Fortunately, there's no Erik's Deli Cafe in the neighborhood or I'd have made it a "fourfecta" with a Marrakech Express and bypass surgery.

Mikesell : 5:32 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Photo Extravaganza

We had a big family reunion at Dina's folks' today. Phil went around with the digital camera and took everyone's picture. Some of them are kinda blurry, but some are pretty good for a 4-year-old.

Meet the family:

And then Phil took some of his signiture avant garde shots, including:I also took a few pictures during the party:To top off the evening, Phil got a quick trip to Chuck E. Cheese's as a reward for (mostly) behaving during the afternoon:

Mikesell : 12:31 AM : 0 snarky remarks

Monday, September 06, 2004

Labor Day Special: Another Book Review

Well, Happy Labor Day all you wageslaves. I did a spot of work myself and read a book on writing entitled The Marshall Plan for Novel Writing. Ideally it'll help me get myself organized and set to write a book I've had in the back of my mind for awhile now. At any rate, reading the book helped me write a review of it.

Why you should read my review of The Marshall Plan for Novel Writing: I use the phrase "deal-a-mealy." I like that phrase. Plus, if you don't know what to do with yourself with too much time on your hands (welcome to my life), head on over to Amazon and kill some time checking out the review.

Mikesell : 1:33 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Sunday, September 05, 2004

The Great Outdoors

This afternoon was uncommonly hot for Ventura, so Grammy & Poppa watered the yard and hosed the boy down at the same time. Actually, it was underground sprinklers, but the effect was the same.

In other news, their back yard has been designated a SuperFund clean-up site due to hazardous toxins in the soil and water table.

Oh well, it looks like it was worth the damage to the ecosystem.

1   2   3   

Mikesell : 10:38 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Saturday, September 04, 2004

Philip and His Cousins

We got together this afternoon with my brother and his family at the Factory Stores in Camarillo. As I recall there is (was) a mental health facility in Camarillo that some of the store clerks'll be checking into this evening. After shopping we went to the Souplantation for dinner. I snapped some shots.When we got home Phil got to open a Thomas the Tank Engine train set Grammy and Poppa bought him at the park yesterday. Here're some pictures of Phil playing with it:  1   2   3   4

And here's a shot I neglected to post yesterday of Phil with his 3-Wheel Motorcycle.

Mikesell : 11:34 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Friday, September 03, 2004

Photo Opportunity

This afternoon we went to the scenic town of Fillmore and their "Day Out with Thomas the Tank Engine." Naturally, Philip was photogenic, so we took some pictures to celebrate this moment of our lives.

Mikesell : 9:54 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Candid Camera

The other day Phil grabbed the digital camera and snapped some shots of Poppa in the back yard (Poppa is trying to fix a bubble gun, even though it looks like he's smoking a hookah).

Ansel Adams or Allen Funt? You be the judge:

Mikesell : 9:43 PM : 0 snarky remarks

Another Milestone

Today is Dina's and my 16th Anniversary. Yay!

We're down in Ventura with her folks (Grammy and Poppa) for a few days. This afternoon we're doing a Thomas the Tank Engine thing in Fillmore (shhhh ... Phil doesn't know about it yet). Tomorrow we're getting together with my brother and his family for some exciting Labor Day shopping opportunities in Oxnard.

I'll try and post pictures of the goings-on while we're down here, but things may have to wait 'til we get home.

Mikesell : 1:19 PM : 0 snarky remarks