GIF Party

GIFs are changing my life.

As soon as Twitter integrated gifs, Angie and I have been having gif wars in our messages to one another. I use them in the messaging platform at work (as a link, but it's better than nothing). I use them on Slack. I downloaded the Google keyboard for iOS, so I could send them easily in my text messages.

Obviously, they've been around for a long time, but they've gotten so easy to embed that I can't stop using them. They express my emotions better than words.

It's interesting how images (gifs, pictures, emojis) have become such a rich conversational tool - and, with technology, how they've become so prevalent. It's like heiroglyphics are back!

Instead of thinking in owls and eyes, I think in this is fine dogs and Nene Leakes expressions.


Christmas 2013

I need a place to list the things I want/need to do this Christmas:

  • Visit the giant nativity downtown
  • Ohio Village Christmas: Dec 20?
  • Wildlights: Dec 23?
  • Columbus Grand Illumination: Dec 6
  • Sister Cookie day
  • Buy presents
  • Decorate the house and tree : December 14
  • Angie's B-Day: celebrating Dec 13


Sounds the Same

I heard this song by One Republic on the radio a few days ago:

And I found myself trying to sing different lyrics. Because it sounds just like this one:

 And the bridge sounds like Savage Garden, but I won't track that video down. Just trust.


Binge Watching is the New Reading

Binge watching TV is like reading a book.

I know nobody wants to admit it. Even Nila's giving the idea a strong side-eye in the picture, but hear me out.

I've binge watched a few tv shows over the past few months since we picked up a Roku and dropped cable. For those who don't know, binge watching is just what it sounds like; watching an entire season (or series) over a short period of time, usually watching multiple episodes in one sitting.

I watched 5 seasons of Breaking Bad in three or four weeks. 

With a book, I can immerse myself in the world of the book. I can follow the characters and the story for hours at a time. I can start a story and end a story as fast as I can read the book. 

With traditional tv, I can spend 30 minutes to an hour with a story each work over multiple years and with huge breaks while the show's off the air.


Netflix and it's friends let me decide when and how I watch. If I want to watch American Horror Story: Asylum in one week, I can do it. Even if I have to hide my face and turn down the volume during the theme song. 

The investment of my time with the show feels a lot like my investment of time with a book. I can dive into that world and stay there until I'm finished.

Binge watchers know what I mean. 


2012: The Lost Year

 2012 is not over, yet, but I can't help feeling that it's a lost year. I didn't make any progress on any of my goals and, in fact, I moved backwards on a few.

This isn't entirely true, of course. As a family, Angie, Nila and I have made some progress. Most of it, however, is Angie and Nila's progress.

Angie got her license back, and her business is moving in the right direction. She's full of great ideas that are being recognized as great by the right people. Things are looking up.

Nila, of course, is excelling at Kindergarten (because she's a genius) and she's learning French like it's her job.

As a family, we moved into a new house in a new neighborhood. This felt like a  move forward in April, but has turned out to be more of a lateral move now that we've had time to reflect. The space is larger, but the neighborhood is worse and we're still renting.

We got a new car in February. That IS a move forward. We pay less for gas and have more room. Another plus for the house is that it has a garage and I can walk to work, so no more scraping car windows!

Professionally, I feel like I'm in the same place I was last year at this time. Financially,  I feel like I'm in the same place I was last year at this time. Spiritually,  I feel like I'm in the same place I was last year at this time.
In regards to health, I have actually moved BACKWARDS; gaining weight rather than losing it and exercising less. Probably those two things are related...

I like to think that perhaps seeds were planted this year that will bear fruit in 2013.

I had a great experience in Iraq and I have got my job down to a science, but both things make me feel bored... the former because of relative excitement and the latter because I've systematized a lot of the work, so no problem-solving big problems anymore.


5 Stages of Grief: Economy Edition

If we agree that the economy collapse began in 2008, it's taken music a long time to catch up. This is because we've been working through the stages of grief: denial, anger, bartering, depression and acceptance. I think we've arrived at acceptance as a culture and I give you two examples for that. The first is Starships by Nikki Minaj. This some contains the lines:
Jump in my hooptie hooptie hoop I own that And I ain’t paying my rent this month I owe that
This may not seem like much, but compared to 2009's top song "I Gotta Feeling" by the Black Eyed Peas, it looks a lot more like my life.
Tonight's the night, let's live it up I got my money, let's spend it up
And then there's the real reason I wrote this post. This song extolling the glories of the thrift store:



Fort and Bravestone

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Anfal Memorial

The following are pictures from the Anfal Memorial taken during my visit on July 5, 2012. The memorial also includes a museum which is not yet complete and a large cemetery in which are/are being buried bodies recovered from mass graves.
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Those Songs

I mentioned in the best of 2011 that Adele's Someone Like You was a certain type of song. It's one of those heart-string-pulling sons that you (or at least I) listen to on repeat. Here are a few more. Feel free to add your own in the comments.

 1. Foolish Games - Jewel

 Best Lyric: You were always brilliant in the morningsmoking your cigarettes and talking over coffeeyour philosohies on art, baroque moved you, you loved Mozart and you'd speak of your loved ones as I clumsily strummed my guitar

  2. Someone Like You - Adele
 Best Lyric:

  3. The Promise - Tracey Chapman

 Best Lyric: If you think of me If you miss me once in a while then I'll returm to you I'll return and fill that space in your heart

  4. Falling in Love - Lisa Loeb

 Best Lyric: 5. Barenaked Ladies


Top Songs of 2011

Here are my pics for the top songs of 2011. Obviously Adele is number 1. I haven't felt this way about a song since Jewel's Foolish Games! I'm going to have to do a post about that song. Stay tuned for that in 2012. The rest of the songs are in no particular order, but my votes for best video go to either Rihanna or Fitz and the Tantrums.

 1. Adele - Someone Like You

 2. Young the Giant - My Body

 3. Fitz and the Tantrums - Don't Gotta Work it Out

 4. The Kills - U.R.A Fever - Apparently from 2007, so I'm a little late to the party. I don't care.

5 . Company of Thieves - Tallulah

 6. Cage the Elephant - Aberdeen

 7. M83 - Midnight City

 8. Foster the People - Helena Beat

 9. Active Child - Hanging On

 10. The Band Perry - If I Die Young

 11. Niki &  the Dove - The Drummer

 12. Nero - Promises

 13. Cobra Starship - Don't Blame the World it's the DJ's Fault

14. Brett Dennen - Surprise, Surprise

 15. Rihanna - We Found Love Mostly for the video