Saturday, December 01, 2018

Oh The Stupid Songs You'll Teach Your Kid

I knew that part of the fun of having a kid would be teaching them about things that you're interested in, but I had no idea how fun it would be - or that some of those things would be built into daily routines. And of course like most every other aspect of my life, a lot of these daily sayings are references to songs that his daddy likes.

Whenever there is thunder outside I got Erik Noisewater saying "Thunder!" to the tune of "Thunderstruck" by AC/DC. We can cue each other, actually, because one of us can say thunder and the other will say "oh-woah-woah-oh-wo-oah" and vice versa. Because he is so into vehicles like a lot of two-year-old boys, he has evolved it into "you've been . . . Thunder Truck," which is actually pretty damn awesome. Then if I say "Dirty Deeds!" he will respond with "done dirt cheap, and that one has evolved into "Thunder Jeep," which needs to the band name of a doom metal band coming to a town near you. 

Then we have a couple go-to songs during bath time. The other day I was in the next room while his mom was giving him his nightly bath, and I heard him saying, "And here comes the water!" I was laughing my ass off because that's something I say to him when I dump water on him to rinse off the suds and it's from "Fembot In a Wet T-Shirt" by Frank Zappa. Then when it is time to pull the drain up and get out of the tub I say, "Why don't you . . . pull the plug?" It is fricking adorable to hear your son sing death metal. 

He also likes to sing "Strange Magic" by Electric Light Orchestra. Another good one for him is "Werewolves of London" by Warren Zevon, where he can hit the "Aaaaooooo" when I sing the end of a verse thusly:

Little old lady got mutilated late last night
Werewolves of London again
Aaaaaoooooooooo Werewolves of London. 

I swear I don't even realize I'm singing these things with them, which is perhaps why the songs span across all sorts of genres. Recently I overheard Mrs. Noisewater turning to the page of Dragons Love Tacos where the dragons get into the spicy salsa and spit fire everywhere, burning the house down, and I hear "hell fire!. Mrs. Noisewater knew something was up. "Why is our son saying "hell fire?" She asked, but she knew it had to be his insane father. That's from Arthur Brown, a a goofball who was singing with a mask and spitting fire (long before KISS) with sometimes high pitched metal style vocals (long before Judas Priest). While the wide range of artists he would influence is nothing short of incredible, the end result of what he sounded like was at times comical, as it is with this song. This is why I laughed my ass off when I heard young Erik singing it. 

Arthur Brown's "Fire" is just about the perfect jukebox sabotage song. Any of you ever put a song on the jukebox that you know is super goofy and obnoxious just to see the reaction of the patrons? Or maybe it's one that you can't even stand yourself so you play it 10 times in a row and leave? I actually texted my good friend Haircut who recently moved away to give him the ammunition of using "The Crazy World of Arthur Brown" for the next time he strikes. What haircut does could actually be referred to as remote jukebox sabotage because he will be bored at home and with the Touchtunes application on his phone he will cue up a string of particularly shitty songs to play at a nearby bar. He scares me because this is the type of man who could become a computer hacker, someone who F's with people without even seeing the reactions of his targets. 

But I digress. 

Hey, sorry for the long break between postings. As far as what has been going on since anyone last heard from me:
1. I completed my second marathon, falling short of my goal of under 4 hours, but beating my time from when I was 9 years younger
2. We are still trying to skate one past the goalie for our second child and continuing to come up short. Tests for both of us look normal, so we just have to keep at it and hope for the best.
3. Tomorrow we are having a party where guests come in Christmas pajamas that will be loads of fun. When I was buying the caramel flavored Baily's that I want to slip in my coffee at said event, a dude slips two big bottles of booze down his inside coat pockets, looks right in my eyes and snarls, "Don't say nuthin!" I got my son riding in my cart and you're going to rob the place and threaten me? So I don't go to that store anymore. 

Okay, sorry to go out on that note. Didn't know I was going to talk about that. See you next time. 

Saturday, October 20, 2018

It seems like everywhere Erik Noisewater goes he charms the pants off of people. Well, when he's a little older it will be the pants; right now he's charming the food right out of folks.

When his grandmother was in town from California watching him during the day while the nanny was out of town, she was taking him out for ice cream just about every day. I thought it was an impromptu thing, like they were just passing by an ice cream parlor so they popped in. But one night we were putting him to bed and his grandma says, "Goodnight, Erik. Tomorrow we'll get ice cream!" Premeditated!

getting after it at the Fro Yo spot with his grandma

I stopped into Dunkin' Donuts with him to pick out his birthday cake and the gal at the counter gave him a free donut whole. He got so excited about it that I had to stop her when she tried to give him a second. He knows what he is doing. He is a cute kid and all, but he turns it up a notch to get a little more sugar. 
Beating up his 2nd b-day cake last month
Then there is a an eastern European bakery around the corner that I stopped into (maybe I have the sugar addiction here), and the nice old lady there said she had a grandson around his age. She gave us mad free donuts. I think I left the place with three donuts for a dollar. When I compared notes with his grandmother, Erik weaseled free stuff from that joint with her as well. He bats a thousand at getting him some donut freebies.

dominating a donut at the bakery
So just last night I had to cook my weekly meal, something I have been slacking on. My lazy ass bought already marinated stuff and picked up some sides behind the counter. The lady there was clowning with Erik, he was working his magic with her, and then she offered a free cookie. It was a pretty bomb chocolate chip cookie, I have to admit. We split it. His mother has been telling me to stop giving him treats everywhere we go, and she is right. But I like free donuts and cookies as much as him, so it's tough for both of us to turn it down. So this time I said those dreaded words that I pray are never about anything more serious or sinister: "Don't tell your mother."

When his mom came home she was greeting him while I was in the next room. When I came through she asked where he got a chocolate chip cookie because Erik told her about it. I said, looking over at my loose-lipped adorable son, "That's impossible. Erik could not have told you that because Erik had a direct order to not tell anyone, especially his mother, about that very cookie." He couldn't help it. Eating is his favorite thing, and he loves to tell his mom all about the awesome stuff he does all day when she gets home.

Have a good day, friends. Thanks for coming by. If I could give you a free donut, I would. Cuz you deserve it.  

Friday, October 05, 2018

Clearing Out the Phone Notepad

When I haven't blogged in a while, I like to just go through the phone and see all the random blog topic notes I have and type up those ideas right quick. Here goes.

1. I drive young Erik Noisewater to daycare every morning in his rear-facing car seat on my way to work, and the other day when I was pulled through the drive through to order a coffee and a muffin I heard him say, "Want some muffin! Want some muffin!" It is easy to forget that he is always listening. He reminds me of the alien on The Simpsons who is in the soundproof thing backstage of the Jerry Springer Show but you hear him bellowing, "I Hear All!" That's Erik Noisewater.

So I tried to outsmart him by ordering a bagel with my coffee, because while I'm sure he would like it if he tried it, I don't think he is familiar with the word bagel. But then as they're handing me my order he says, "I want a bite!" He remembered where he was and knew I was getting grub. Dang it. So with the muffin and the bagel alike, I reached back there and plopped bites into his mouth without turning around. We got it down pat, him and I.

2. Did I tell you that Erik likes to drop little color capsules into his tub to turn the water funny colors? While he is finishing up his dinner he says, "I want blue bath!" for example. You can also do things like throw a red and blue one in there and make purple, so it's science and art lessons and shit. Some nights he wants a yellow bath and it looks like he's soaking in 15 to 20 two-liter bottles of Mountain Dew. Then when we take him out to dry him off he gets pissed off because he wants the drying off to be over and the running around naked to begin. He says, "Go see mommy!" or "Go see Da-Da!" It's funny because when his mom was out of town he had no problem staying in the bathroom for teeth brushing, lotion, or anything else. He knew he had no audience waiting outside.

But when the other parent is outside the bathroom he comes out with a big smile and says, "Naked baby! Woo-Woo-Woo!" And if I'm sitting on the couch he wants to climb up there and go from a standing position to an immediate hard drop down onto his butt. He goes up and down saying, "boing-boing!" And then the other night he says, "Naked boing-boings?" I told him naked boing-boings is how would be attempting to make his baby sister later that evening. That got an annoyed smile and sigh out of the wife, which is way better than a laugh when you're married.

3. Today is Friday and my 2nd marathon is Sunday. 26.2 miles all over the city from China Town to Boys Town (the gay neighborhood). I picked up some thrift store clothes to throw away the day of the race. A lot of people do it, just fling their 4 dollar shirts and pants over a fence to be collected later for donations. I got some definite great scores, and what I really wanted, I found: break-away snap up pants like the professional basketball players wear so I can rip them off and throw them like a total hardass. It will look like I'm ready to put on an impressive display of athleticism, but I will be trotting through some pretty slow-ass miles in reality.


That's all I got today, folks. Sorry for such a short one and for no pictures, but I'm on a crummy computer. What you all got on tap for this fine weekend? What kind of "marathon" sounds a lot better in your minds?

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Ozzy, the Bus, the Rockstar On the Bus, and the Sad Bodybuilder Woman On the Bus

Ozzy at last!
I went to see Ozzy Osbourne live for the first time. I have seen him play in Black Sabbath (his band based out of Birmingham, England before going solo, in case any of you don't know of the band who created heavy metal) twice, but I had never seen just Ozzy before. Now that I have, the only remaining and surviving huge bucket list guy is Sir Paul McCartney (a guy from Liverpool, another working class England town, called The Beatles, in case you know absolute jack squat about rock music). It's a little frustrating that 9 out of 10 times when I told people that I was off to see Ozzy their first response was a statement something like this:

  1. "Can he still sing?"
  2. "Will you be able to understand what the hell he is saying?"
  3. "Do they have to drag his old bones out and prop up his mortal remains?"
When in reality:

  1. Yes. He sounded just fine to me.
  2. Ozzy is actually far more coherent when he sings. It is kind of like if you have ever known someone who stutters but does not do so at all when he or she sings. Ozzy has always seemed more comfortable on stage being Ozzy than when he is walking about being John Osbourne. It is like a lot of comedians who are so confident and quick witted on stage but then do not know what in the heck to say at a cocktail party. Also, the Ozzy most people know was from a reality show called "The Osbournes" where he was stumbling about and had a hard time forming sentences. This is because he was falling back into his drug addictions and was at a pretty much all time low during that period. Pull up just about any other video of him, and he is very charming and downright hilarious. Intentionally funny, that is. Not a caricature of himself that he was marketed as after that damn show. But to be honest I could not understand him very well last night, but I think it was the echoing sound of the shitty suburban venue. And okay fine, maybe a little bit because he is Ozzy.
  3. No. I saw no one propping him up. Yes, he looks a little old when he paces back and forth a little hunched over, but for the most part you see that exuberance and that way an audience is never quite loud enough for him and see that youthful excitement in his eyes. "I can't fucking hear you!" he says over-and-over. Mrs. Noisewater joked, "Maybe he really can't hear them anymore." Okay, that's pretty funny. I'll admit.
Wow, that was a much longer rant than I intended it to be, but I just get defensive about Ozzy because he has been a part of my life for so long. It was similar with Harry Caray when he was calling games for the Cubs into his twilight years after a major stroke with splashes of dementia and Budweiser. When people made fun of him I would tell them that he was not always this old and he is an institution of the Cubs and baseball as a whole. He is a God damn Hall of Famer. He called games from a fan's perspective, which was innovative in its own right. I honest to god do not think people separate the man himself from Will Ferrell's intentionally over exaggerated impression. When people picked on him, they might as well have been hurling insults at my grandfather and it's the same with my grandpa Ozzy. Shit, another rant. Let's move forward with the actual tale I wanted to tell here.

One of my oldest and dearest friends who has been popping up in this blog since its inception, Heterosexual Life Partner (HLP), and I took a free party bus running out of a heavy metal Chicago bar to get to the pain in the ass venue deep into the suburbs. The giant yellow school bus finally pulled up to the bar very late with all of us standing outside with no explanation from staff. Checking our wristbands as we climbed aboard was an extremely muscular and powerfully drunk woman in a tight-fitting shirt showing all her hard work at the gym. She for sure was twice as strong as me physically and had muscles in her face that I'm not sure how to get, but there was a sadness and vulnerability about her. She was stumbling up and down the aisles trying to remember people's orders and then stumbling back to the front of the bus to fetch the beers out of the cooler. Swaying back and forth leafing through change in her fanny pack, she told us that it was her dog's birthday. Without any of us asking any follow up questions she lowered her head and revealed, "She died in my arms today" and started weeping uncontrollably. A woman said something to the effect of, "I'm so sorry" and muscular bus bartender dove into her for a well developed upper body strength, vice grip hug. Whoever was next to that customer must have said "me too" because our mourning libations distributor burrowed into that customer for yet another deep hug.

This is not an actual picture of bus bartender. This is, in fact, Nicole Bass , an unfortunately deceased regular on The Howard Stern Show.
This was why the pour woman was so schnockered-drunk. She was in a state mourning. HLP and I were shocked that she showed up to work in her mental state. Luckily for her she has a job with a very lax policy on drinking. And weed smoking. She was offering free hits off her bowl. "Anyone need anymore beer? Or weed?" she would say. When the bus pulled up to the amphitheater she said, "The show doesn't start for a little while so you're free to stay aboard for a while. There's still plenty of beer and weed." She seemed like she needed some friends, but HLP and I had a date with Ozzy. When I wasn't sure if my sister was going to make it do to some severe back pain she was experiencing, HLP suggested we could sell or even give the extra ticket to the bus bartender, but then we realized she would be standing next to us all night crying. We had already checked the setlist and "Bark At the Moon" would be the very first song. Those canine related words were bound to send her into more crying or perhaps even suicide watch. She was best left on the bus looking after our beer and weed. 

This is the album cover that prompted a handy man my parents hired when I was a teenager to say, "Did you know your son is listening to Satanic music?" My mom, always the devout atheist, nodded politely and then laughed her ass of when she shut the door.
Oh, as it turns out joining us on the fun bus was the lead singer and songwriter of a fairly popular Chicago area band that enjoyed some national exposure in the late nineties and beyond. I will not say who it was to protect his anonymity, but HLP, being one of his biggest fans, was gushing a little over him. We were tickled that despite being a fairly successful rocker, he was riding the free bar bus like the rest of us. The rock star was very kind on the ride in like in a "I'll be nice enough to you where you don't tell people I was a big dick when you tell the story" kind of way." Then on the ride home he was nice in a "We should totally hang out sometime. Shit, I love everyone!" kind of way. He and his much younger and quite striking blond rocker-chick girlfriend were very well buzzed. She told us that right at the end of the show she was rather politely thrown out of the venue for peeing in the men's room. This has to be done sometimes when the line in the men's room is long. Someone must have snitched, but who? That has never bothered me. We are all God's creatures (if you believe in that sort of thing) doing what naturally has to occur when you pour way too much beer down your throat. Why should the female species have to wait longer to do so? It's an unfair and potentially harmful policy. 

This album cover used to scare and gross me out as a kid. What in the hell did he just take a bloody bite out of?
Rock star guy and I bonded slightly (in my mind) over hating Bruce Springsteen and hating the fact that Ozzy played nothing off of his second album, "Diary of a Madman," the final of two masterpiece records with Randy Rhoads, the late guitar prodigy taken from the world far too young by a coked up bus driver who fancied himself a single engine plane pilot who crashed the plane into the damn bus. Little known fact, I wanted to name my son Rhoads until I learned that Tom Morello, lead guitarist of Rage Against the Machine had stolen my idea, and I stay stolen regardless of the fact that he thought of it first. In any event, rock star guy and I were singing a number of those songs we had wished we heard on the ride home. And we sang all the songs that came on the radio as if they were all the best things on earth even though they were very similar songs to the ones we heard on the way in when we were far less buzzed and were engaging in polite and much more quiet conversations. 

Rock star guy and his girlfriend were talking about making a trip to the Liars Club (the spot where HLP called home and our favorite place on earth for so many years in our late 20's and roughly all of our 30's) later that evening, but HLP and I now have wives and kids at home who would prefer us to not be like the walking dead the following day. Rock star guy is a little older than us, to be honest, but he can get away with acting like a rock star because his job is actually: rock star. Plus it is probably best that we stopped glomming onto him and his girlfriend and allowed them to enjoy one another. Their relationship looked very fresh and exciting for them and the added company of two drunk-daddy fans would likely have worn thin for them after the bus ride was over if it hadn't already. 


Okay, rock stars. Hope you have enjoyed this story. I do realize it was an extremely lengthy post with many a digression, but I think when the writer and storyteller in me lies dormant for so long, a stored up monster ejaculate of words is bound to be the result. Keep rocking and barking at the moon, my deer blog buddies. 

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Just some random updates, some funny things and things that are going on with with Dr. Kenneth Noisewater . . .

1. Mrs. Noisewater, Erik Noisewater, and myself just got back from Pittsburgh. We like to visit cities that we feel might be misunderstood and/or underrated. Cleveland really surprised us not too long ago, and Pittsburgh is similar. I'm a big Cubs fan, so we caught a Pirates versus Cubs game at PNC Park. The view from our seats with the backdrop of the skyline was breathtaking. I bought myself one of those old school Pirates hats with the yellow stripes going around because I have always dug that look, perhaps more due to Rocky George from Suicidal Tendencies than because of Willie Stargell and the like.

That's Rocky on the far right, obviously
Willie wore it well too.

We also took Baby Noisewater to a children's museum with a Thomas the Train exhibit, and he just about lost his mind. We don't let him watch all that much television, but when you're you're stuck on an airplane or need to get some stuff done around the house, you got to put Thomas on for the kid. He only has a handful of toy Thomas trains, and one of them is a random white train that has magnets to connect to Thomas but does not seem to be officially affiliated with the franchise. I felt bad that he didn't have a name on his underbelly like the other guys, so I started calling him Steve. Now Baby Noisewater refers to him as "Steve" or "Big Steve," and it's hilarious. I keep telling him that it's bullshit that Big Steve is never featured on the cartoon show. Maybe we had best pen a letter to the network upon Steve's behalf to get him some damn air time. 

2. Sometimes when I come home late at night with too many beers in my belly and need to stay up drinking some water before heading to bed so I don't have a 3 day old man hangover I will watch a bunch of Youtube videos. Sometimes it will be a comedian I like and a million of his/her routines or talk show appearances. Sometimes it will be guitar solos from a band I like, especially when there is very limited footage of them and I have to do detective missions. And most recently it is two Black guys who are self-proclaimed hip hop fans with very limited knowledge of heavy metal music having live reactions to metal music for the first time. 

They blow me away because I have heard some of these songs a million times and don't even think of an observation that occurs to them the first time they hear it. They are very likable dudes, they listen to everything with an open mind, and they really seems to know about and appreciate all kinds of music. Below are a couple of good examples. I like the Megadeth one because the one guy says the song kicks like a porno with zero dialogue or foreplay, just smashing, and then he does a graphic sex noise with his hands. 

Then I like the Mercyful Fate one because of their reaction to King Diamond's high pitched otherworldly voice. It's not a sound you would expect someone to love the first time, so I like how they keep it real, admit it's weird and funny for them, but still give the song a chance.

3. So the other day Mrs. Noisewater are driving home from a BBQ, and I hear a not quite 2-year-old Erik Noisewater in the backseat saying "vagina, vagina, vagina" like 10 times in a row. I asked the Mrs, "Is he saying vagina?" She said that he came in while she was changing the other day and started pointing at her and asking questions. She thought it best to just tell him the real terms, but what we didn't know is that he would be obsessed with all the naughty parts. Every time I lay him down to change him, without fail, he says "wiener and butt," pointing to the correct places. Then one day I take my shirt off in front of him and he says "boobies." That was a blow to my confidence for sure. So anyway, he's in the backseat saying vagina 19 times, and then he says pizza around 12 times. I said to Mrs. Noisewater, "Vagina and pizza? He's planning one hell of a weekend back there." Mrs. Noisewater laughed and said that should go in the blog, so there it is.

Fare thee well, Blog Buddies. 

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Vacation In a Tiny But Mighty State, Too Much Darn Running, My Aching Back, and The Mats

1. Vacation in a Tiny but Mighty State

We just got back from a vacation with Mrs. Noisewater's family in Rhode Island. Her brother rents out a beach house for us every year for us all to get together and be beach bums for a week. It is good for Baby Noisewater to see his cousin (who is close in age to him) for an extended period of time, since his cousin lives all the way out in New York. All his cousins on my side of the family are fully grown. I must say that after a rocky start of smacking each other in the head any time they wanted each other's toys, they gradually became very close and wanted to play together all the time. 

On the final day when we were packing up the rental car I got a call from the airline who gave me an offer to fly out the following day instead in exchange for 600 dollar vouchers each, plus vouchers for the price of each of our outgoing flights, plus the cost of a hotel and our meals for the last day. Hard to pass that up, and we got to check out Providence, R.I. for the first time, a wonderful little city. And now we have dough stored up and ready to take us on our next vacation. I have already been thinking of friends I haven't seen in forever who I should visit, and it shouldn't have been a matter of money to make me consider it. But I guess that's just how it goes. 

2. Too Much Darn Running

I got in some nice runs during the vacation as part of my marathon training. I had a 16 miler scheduled for last Sunday, but because I ended up flying in Sunday instead of Saturday, I had to get on the lake path during the 90 degree heat rather than in the much cooler morning. I met my friend Night Train for the first part of it (as he was wrapping up 16 miles of his own). We started getting back into running together a few years back, but he is a little younger and just a better athlete in most every way. While our pace used to be about the same, now he crushes marathons with a pace well below 8 minutes. That's like my 5K pace. So his long, slow run pace is like me hauling ass as fast as I possibly can. The four miles I did with him in the heat wiped my ass out so badly that I had to stop at 10 instead of the 16 I had planned on. 

Quitting is not something I do when I run, so this was very disheartening. How I perform this upcoming Sunday for a 15 miler is crucial. I want to eliminate the heat factor by getting out earlier, and eliminate the Night Train pace factor by not running with him (which is a little sad because I like his company). If I quit with those variables controlled for, then it's a matter of I'm behind in my training or I have become a quitter. 

3. My Aching Back

I posted a social media video doing push-ups with Baby Noisewater on my back. I did a couple similar baby workout videos when Erik was a baby, but now he is more of a toddler. Naturally he is now heavier and more active. It is perhaps the strain from the toddler push-ups that paved the way for the injury the following morning at the water park. I slid down a water slide with him for like the 15th time, and while half-submerged in water I tried to hoist him out of the trench which is when the lower-left part of my back clenched up. I tried to walk it off and stretch but the pain wasn't going anywhere. Naturally, he wanted to do that slide another 9 times, despite me guiding him towards other less painful experiences. Little kids have an innate sense of knowing what you don't want them to do, and knowing that must be the cooler and more dangerous thing. I guess that's something they continue to master as they reach their teenage years. I sprung for a massage today. I got a deal with the spa connected to my gym for a two for one, but all they had left for today's massages were dude practitioners. Oh well. I needed it today, so I just went with the man-on-man action. Anyone have a preference with sex of their masseuse or does that totally not matter to you?

4. The 'Mats

I read a ton of rock and roll biographies, and I can say without a doubt that "Trouble Boys" about the Replacements is the best of that genre. I was a casual fan when I started, and now I have slipped into that true fanatic status that so many 'Mats fans lay claim to. As a matter of fact, I didn't feel a right to call them The 'Mats before I read it, but after reading the book, which led to revisiting all the albums, watching tons of interviews, and getting into Westerberg's songs to the point where you feel like he is speaking to you, I'm now an obsessed 'Mats fan. I suggest you give the book a read because they are like no other band. You have Bob Stinson's tragic upbringing that led to his severe mental health problems and eventual dismissal from the band. You have his brother Tommy joining the band at 13-years-old, dropping out of school and being raised by a hard drinking and hard drugging rock and roll band. This is something that would never be allowed for in today's society, and it's fascinating that it ever happened at all. 

Then you have the band's leader, Paul Westerberg, who simultaneously wanted to be have a big hit bunform to anything. He would et didn't want to coither self-sabotage the band or just be met with unfortunate circumstances every step of the way. That and they had a brand of music that doomed them to be cult heroes rather than household namesOr maybe all of this was a master plan to be snubbed and broke during their time, but to hold up better than any other band of the 1980'sYes, the songs themselves have their hooks in people, but those wild and unpredictable drunken shows where they read an audience and decided to do play the exact opposite of what that audience wanted to hear (an all country show for punk fans, for example), made everyone who attended feel like they were part of a one of a kind show, like they were in on the joke, and like that one show they saw was historic. This also extended their legacy

When they reunited in 2013 I had a ticket to see them at Riot Fest, a weekend long rock festival in Chicago. My friend smuggled in a bottle of Jack Daniels, and drinking my way through Suicidal Tendencies and the Pixies, I was so horribly over served and tired that I decided to take myself home before the Replacements even took the stage because I had to work the next day. I looked at the set list and it was just about every song I would have wanted them to play. It will always be one of my all-time rock regrets, but then again, getting too drunk to see The Replacements is kind of the perfect story arc


I got a metal show that I'll be seeing tonight (Spirit Adrift), and I don't work tomorrowA friend I was going with cancelled last minuteWith the back killing and needing sleep more than metal at the moment, I almost decided to skip it. But then when I asked an old friend to go, he said he would. Yeahmissing these guys isn't likely to become anything like missing The Replacements, but I'm not taking my chances. I'm not quitting on stuff anymore, be it with concepts, running, staying in touch with friends, or anything elseTalk to you later, my blog buddies til the end . . .

Friday, July 27, 2018

Case Logic Inspires Logical Music Choices

Get a look at that. Yup. That right there is a book full of CD's that is currently in Latifah (My cars always have Black chick names. No idea how that started). I unpacked them all out of the cases years ago and found the biggest book offered on Amazon to transfer them into to save space. Do you know that I am such a nut about my outdated tangible music format that I took the back covers out to slip into the sleeves so that I wouldn't lose any paperwork? Also, how could I part with some of these discs? You see that album on the left that reads, "Thirteen?" That is an album by a group called Horny Toad with Louichi Mayorga, founding member of Suicidal Tendencies. He came into the record store I worked at to drop off a few copies, but sadly I wasn't working that day. That album is one where if I threw it out I just know that I would never think to look it up down the line. And even if I did, I would never find it. The Horny Toads live on inside Latifah!

The giant book of CD's has been sitting on a shelf for years now, but something made me take them to my car one morning. I have been having a blast spinning some classics (classics to me, that is). The other day I played Jane's Addiction's "Ritual De Lo Habitual" all the way through. If you go through the effort of putting back the last disc, thumbing through for your next one, slipping the new one back into the player, and especially if you are driving during that whole process - then you're going to damn well listen to the whole thing.

This was the beauty of tangible music, and those days are long forgotten by many and never even known by newer generations. But, my god, I forgot how fantastic Jane's Addiction was. As I was playing those songs I got to thinking that girls loved that band too. They had a sexiness about them with the grooves they played, and they were all tattoo'd up rebel surfer types but with a hippy vibe. They had a heavy but funky aspect to their playing, a lot like the Chili Peppers, only Jane's had a good singer.

I'm off to a beach vacation tomorrow with my in-laws for a week, so I wanted to be sure to keep up on blogging weekly. I know I won't get a chance at the beach house. Your Mission, Seven Readers: Find a piece of tangible music and play it. Report back to me with your findings. 

Friday, July 20, 2018

During the summers that I don't have to go to work and am working as a full time father, I take one day out of the week to drop Erik Noisewater off at daycare. This particular
Daycare Day I was surprisingly efficient. 

1. I always go to coffee shops because I know for a fact I won't get anything done at home. I'll just end up watching television, napping, burping the worm, and who knows what other useless things I can do to avoid getting shit done. I find it fun to keep trying out new coffee shops, and yesterday's was an awesome Colombian one where you can pour yourself regular or sparkling water out of taps. Now that is cool because to be honest I only typically sip one coffee all day, and that's enough to keep me going. But I probably have around 5 to 6 waters, and sparkling stuff makes me feel like a big timer. So that's one thing I did. Found a dope coffee shop in my new neighborhood.

I always find a couch because I have shit posture. 

2. I turned submitted all my tests and essays for one online class and signed up for a new one. If I can knock down a couple more I can bump my pay grade up a little to help pay for necessities like diapers, mortgages, and craft beers.

3. Got a haircut. Do any of you have that place Sports Clips where it's a sports themed place in which you can watch ESPN, get a hot towel on your face, they massage your back with a vibrator (not that kind), and the ladies all wear referee outfits? It's probably a little sexist, right? I never really gave it much thought, but it's kind of like, "What do men like? Sports. Women in skimpy outfits. Women pampering them. And watching sports while women don't talk." Anyway, I did talk to my stylist, and she was a very nice young lady with an AD/HD 3-year-old. I was able to give her some advice in exchange for her maybe demeaning herself a little, for whatever that is worth.

I think they actually stopped wearing these, so I don't feel AS douchey going now.
4. After the haircut I stopped into my gym that is across the street. Not to work out. It's an off day with my marathon training. I just wanted a peanut butter, banana, and chocolate shake. Some guy named Jay came up when she swiped my gym pass, and I was like, "That's cool. Put that on Jay's account. Fuck him." The gym gal laughed and upgraded me to a large one for the price of a medium. The large one was way too much shake, as wide of a cup as a gallon of milk, but I still finished that bad boy because it tastes like chocolate, bananas, and peanut butter for God's sakes.

5. Then I thought I should get in a hot yoga class to stretch out my legs that are getting destroyed from all the running. I laid my gym mat on the floor, and then when I flapped the towel out to put on top of the mat, something went flying out that had been stuck to the towel. When I looked more closely tot see what it was, it was lacy. What could it be? Oh shit! Panties! I just shot panties across the room in a yoga studio. Everyone in there is going to think I'm some sort of panty-sniffing yoga pervert when in actuality my wife's panties just clung to the towel from the laundry. But who would believe that?

No, I don't wear those pants. Nor the glasses. And no, I can't do that with my legs. 
And they just had to be lacy, right? If they were her workout bloomers they would look like maybe it was a headband or something. Nope. Unmistakeably panties. I swiftly scooped them up and snuck them in my pocket. Honestly, it was hard to get into my zen mode during some of the more challenging stretches because in the back of my mind I was worried about the damn panties slipping out of my pocket and back onto the studio floor.

6. Aside from the panties thing, the yoga was really great. I left feeling very recharged and at one with where I was in that time and place, if that makes any sense. Hard to explain I suppose unless you do some yoga from time-to-time. I only get around to going to a class every so often, but every time I think to myself that I need to make it a weekly event. A lot like blogging, which I'm sure you can understand. Then as I'm walking to my car I see two meter maid guys looking at my license plate and typing in their computer thingies. Shit! I tried to explain that I had no idea it was a metered lot, which was true. They were having none of it. One guy was training the other guy, and he talked to the trainee like I wasn't even there. He wouldn't even look at me.

Every time I have come out to my car and the person was in the midst of writing a ticket, they have let me go. Isn't that kind of an unspoken rule? Like, "Okay, you win this round. But watch your ass!" Nope. This guy was having none of that. Maybe he had to be tough in front of the trainee, or maybe he was just a dick. I was thinking to myself that if I wanted out of this one I would have to grovel and kiss this guy's ass, and I couldn't bring myself to do that. I hated him, so I would rather just pay the fifty bucks. After getting in my car (because I always think of the right move after it's too late) what I thought I could have done was to throw a yoga towel, or a pair of panties, over the license plate and peel out of that bitch. Next time. All the more reason to keep a pair of panties in your pocket. What in the hell am I talking about?

Until next time, Seven Readers. Get shit done today like a daddy on a damn mission. What do you have cracking this weekend? I intend to go to a Cubs game tomorrow night with my season ticket buddies and it will likely be an evening of straight-up drunken, skin-tight* buffoonery. Talk to you again next week, probably a few brain cells lighter, but I'll still try to be funny as best I can.
*No, that doesn't make any sense. It's a Guided By Voices lyrics. Few of their lyrics make any kind of sense, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Shit-Canned At the Grocery Store

So far I have made good on updating the old blog once a week again. You know what helped? I have a repeating entry on the calendar in my phone that reads, "Update your blog, you fucking fuck." It helps to capture that anger at myself so that my future self is reminded how mad past self is at himself. And that might be the dumbest most confusing sentence I have ever written on here, but get used to it. Because it will now be weekly again.

The other day I went to the grocery store with Baby Noisewater, and after spending an insane amount of time in traffic, I decided I had earned a drink. We have one of those fancy grocery spots with a bar inside complete with a full band playing. By 5pm it's nearly impossible to get a seat at the bar. So what a lot of customers do is get an adult beverage and sip it whilst they get their shopping done. Since it was a balmy summer evening, I decided a margarita would hit the spot.

As I'm midway through finding all the items on my list I suddenly realized that I was quite drunk. On only one drink! To me, this mason jar had to have been 80% tequila, but maybe it was a combination of a very stiff drink and a very weakened tolerance. Dr. Ken before child was going out every Friday and Saturday night. With-child (that sounds pregnant) Dr. Ken really ties one on maybe once a month. The right thing to do would be to set that glass of demon rum on the bar, but the cheap-ass and drunk-ass in me said, "We can't let this bad boy go to waste, now can we?"

I like to let Baby Noisewater pick out his fun grocery cart: Taxi, police car, fire engine, or pink car. If he picks the pink one, totally cool with me, but this time he went with the taxi. He was reaching over his steering wheel that doesn't do shit for my 'Rita and saying, "Juicy!" I tried to explain to him that it was "daddy juice" and that it was "yuck." He wasn't convinced. I was looking for some frozen fruit for smoothies. The prices are a lot better at the local members only bulk store, but I needed some now. I actually said out loud, "These prices stink!" Then Noisewater started shouting, "Prices stink! Prices stink!" He was hollering"stink" about their prices and I was stinking drunk. We were not a desirable customer combo in the fancy grocery store at this point.

Have you ever noticed that when you're drinking you want to talk people more, and if no one is around you end up talking to yourself? Well, as a social drinker that's how I operate, and having a kid in your cart is pretty much free reign to jabber to yourself like a nut. "How about some bananas? Those look a little ripe, and those shits are organic. Fuck that." Nobody bats an eye when they see you have a baby in your cart along for the ride. And forgive me if I've talked about this before, but people give you a lot of breaks when you're a dad. Everyone helps me out when I'm out and about with my kiddo. Holding doors, offering to help me carry my stroller off of the train. Sadly, I don't see this sort of support for our moms out there, and I think it's because it's expected of them to go it alone out there. Fucked up, right?

I'm going to post you a video for you to give you an idea of how goofy Baby Noisewater and I are and how much fun we have together. Just to explain, his grandfather had recently gotten him saying  Geronimo and cowabunga when he pushes him on the swings at the park. Baby Noisewater just knows inherently that cowabunga is funny word. I'm proud of him because he talks a lot for his age, he is polite, he is friendly, and he is loving. All that is great. But the number one thing by far that makes me proud is that he is funny. That's important to me. Tell me he is not funny in this clip? That gag of him biting the book is hilarious and then he says, "eat." He had never done that before. It just came to him. Quite the natural improv. The guy seems to know what gets a laugh out of people, and then he beats it to death like a dead horse, just like his old man. He's a good dude and a solid shopping companion when I'm all burracho'd up on a potent margarita, crossing items off of my grocery list.

It's Friday, my Seven Readers. Tip something back and enjoy it. I booked a sitter and I'm taking the lady out for a nice dinner. What do you have on tap?

Saturday, July 07, 2018

This has certainly been the longest period between blog updates. It probably looked like I retired. What's worse, it probably looks like I had an ass surgery (last post) and that made me hang up my blogging shoes. Nope, it is just laziness. I think I have convinced myself that I'm not as funny as I used to be, that I'm not as good of a writer, and I don't get inspiration of interesting ideas coming to me like I used to. These are all probably true, but the trick is just sitting down and typing. Something will come to me that way, and I'll get better in all those areas the more I keep at it.

So what is new? I'm moved into the new condo. We really do like it a lot over here. Erik isn't even two-years-old yet, and when we are in the car and I turn on the block he says, "home-home." It already feels like home to him, and that's really great. The neighbors are all very nice, and Erik even has a friend of his own across the hall named Cole. The block is very quiet and almost suburban, but then you can walk to things easily that feel very much urban. So, it's a best of both worlds. Mrs. Noiswater and I finally feel like grown folks.

As some of you know I have the summertime off every year. I'm keeping busy by taking Erik Noisewater to as many free activities as I can find (I also don't get paid in the summer). I devised a schedule where he has stuff to do every day. A given week will look something like this:

Monday: Drive him out to the suburbs to see his grandparents. I'll usually do a long run on those days because I'm marathon training. It turns out piling miles onto legs that are 7 years older than my last marathon is a lot harder.

Tuesday: Run him with the running stroller over to Wrigley Field for a singing and dancing thing in the little park outside the ballpark. Stay for the water spraying everywhere and let him go nuts. The kid loves water.

Wednesday: Story time at the library. We have a women's bookstore that does one too. I really hope they don't tell me and Erik to take our asses and penises out of there. Just kidding, I'm sure they are very welcoming to all. We live in a heavily gay and lesbian neighborhood. I'm trying to find a local bar that isn't a predominately gay one. I can hang out a gay one, but I think my go to one would be good if it were a straight one, right?. That sounds so shitty to say that, but I think it's hard to explain myself and the more I do the bigger asshole I sound like. Let's move onto Thursday.

Thursday: Take him to the free public zoo so he can look at all kinds of fun animals. But usually he just wants to find the construction trucks and gets pumped about riding the bus. He's a city kid for sure.

Friday: Drop him off at daycare so I can work on my online classes. I'm trying to knock out three classes this summer so I can bump up my pay scale. That's the only reason. Almost none of the stuff will I ever be putting into practice. It is boring as hell so I lock myself in a coffee shop so there are no easy ways to distract myself.

Pretty much I'm just really happy. It turns out having kids and a family is fun as hell. I guess I always thought it would just be so hard and boring. Hardly. There was a time where I wished I was rich and famous, but you know what? It fucking sucks to be famous right now. They are all caught up in some "me too" scandal, or they're in a messy divorce, or they have reporters following them everywhere. Sure, I'm finding free shit all over the city to do because I need to save dough, but I like my life this way. I actually would not trade places with any celebrity.

How are you feeling, readers? About the same or is there a celebrity you secretly wish you could switch places with?

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

I feel like I can level with you people. Some of you I have known for over ten years. This is why I think I can come clean and let you know that I have been having major league ass problems. It got to the point where I was dreading every time I had to go number two because it was like pooping shards of hot glass, and that's no picnic - let me tell you. Pretty soon it started hurting when I was sitting down. I remember a long conference I had to sit through where I opted to stand up for the majority of it. Many probably speculated I was having back or knee issues. Nope. Try Major. League. Ass. Problems. Then other nights it would hurt when I was lying on my back trying to sleep. That is when I knew this thing was serious and wasn't going away.

Turns out I had what is called an anal fissure, or a small tear in the lining of the anus. You can read all about it this particularly nasty affliction with the link provided if you want, but I think I can best sum it up this way: You don't want it. I got a friend to watch Baby Noisewater while I went to the doctor because at 1 and a half years old, he is getting a little too old to be in the same room seeing a man peering into and probing around his daddy's butthole. I would hate later in his life for someone to ask what his first memory was and that to be his answer.

I like my butt doctor. I figure you have to be a guy with a good sense of humor, and someone who can  easily put someone at ease because patients coming in there, if they're anything like me, are scared and miserable. He asked me to get in one of those robes and he would be right back. I asked if I could clean house a little back there before he was going to be taking a look, and he said, "Honestly, it's an occupational hazard at this point. You wouldn't clean the trash cans before the garbage man came, would you?" I really do like this fella. If you need a butt guy, I know the guy.

So the procedure he recommended is injecting botox into my anus. That's right, friends. I had botox done. I asked if they could use any remaining botox and squirt a little into my forehead, with a different needle of course. You never go ass to forehead. They couldn't do that for me. But, I will say that when everything starts to get old and wrinkly on me, my anus will remain pulled tight and smooth all around like the highest quality imported, Italian leather.

Believe it or not, one has to be put under for this procedure. I remember being wheeled into the surgery room, and one lady saying,

"Whoah! Almost forgot (insert major important term I've forgotten here). Jeez. Hello! Haha."

And then,

"Okay, Mr. Noisewater. Now count down from 10 . . ."

I remember thinking:

"No! Wait! I don't think this gal is functioning at her Sunday best today if she is forgetting things. And she thinks it's funny? This is my ass we're talking about here! Can I get someone else up in here. I'm so sleepy . . ."

Is this problem I have been dealing with any excuse for taking a month off of blogging? No. Not at all. I could have typed standing up just fine. I'll get back in the game more regularly because this was helpful getting this off my chest and sharing this embarrASSing situation with you fine folks. Gotta run. I'm on a vacation from work, spending time with Baby Noisewater all week, and we have a music class in a minute. I keep him very active and engaged, so I'm grateful to have this rear end issue all straightened out. Take care of your butts, my friends.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Old School Rap For an Old-Ass Dad

While having breakfast with Erik Noisewater this morning, I'm not exactly sure what made me put it on, but I keyed up "Enter the 36 Chambers" by The Wu-Tang Clan on my Sonos. I haven't listened to that one all the way through perhaps since the last millennium. As a matter of fact, this may have been the first time I have heard it in any other form besides cassette. You see, back in the mid 1990's when you bought an album, part of the process of deciding if you wanted the CD or the tape was whether or not you anticipated putting it on in the car or at home. You had to be rich to have a CD player in the car. Rap music to me was just cool as fuck to roll to in the car to like a pimp; leaned way back with one hand on the wall. You know, a white, dorky pimp.

Best pic of a Wu-Tang dad I could find.
There will never be another group like the Wu. A collection of rappers that talented from the same projects, all with something to say, with a sense of humor, with artistry and integrity, and with a brand new gritty style no one had ever heard. Very rarely can I listen to a rap album all the way through, especially as I get older. Even back then, I always thought it a little too bold of an idea when guys were coming out with double disc rap albums. But if there were 36 tracks on the Wu's debut, I gladly would have cruised the mean streets of my boring suburban town listening to every last one. Actually, it is so rare that I will listen to a rap album all the way through. I came up with this analogy, and let me know if it makes any sense to you.

Rappers are like professional wrestlers. So awesome to me back then, but as an adult I can't tell you anything about the modern day ones. 

I could go down the rabbit hole from hell researching 1980's pro wrestlers, and I can still kick some rhymes when I hear those throw-back rap joints.

Behold: Ravishing Rick Rude. The best bad guy wrestler ever with his porno mustache, mullet, and sick abs, about to give some fool the Rude Awakening. 
I have heard Kendrick Lamar is incredible, but I can't say that I have heard one thing by him. Still, I give him credit for going by his given name. Takes balls because those rapper names are so much more fun to think of and easier for fans to remember. Chance the Rapper sounds like just about the greatest guy for my city of Chicago, and I love everything he does for his home town. I just don't know squat about his music. It is like those lyrics just don't enter my brain like they used. They all soaked in there and stayed forever when I was a kid. I would hear a Beastie Boys song and have the whole song memorized after two listens. Now I hear that autotune sound and I just tune out, so to speak. There is no more room in my clogged-up, old balls brain.

Before the Internet there was no way to know for sure what all the lyrics were unless there was a lyric sheet in the album. Rap albums rarely had those. Metal albums almost always did, and they would even tell you which guy played each guitar solo. To figure out the rap lyrics I would put on headphones and write down each line and rewind them. Sometimes I would have to just jot down what it sounded like phonetically.

Even Ja Rule loves puppies.
I'm almost always playing my Sirius radio stations in the car, but on the actual radio there is a station, 104.3, which is all old school hip-hop and R & B. The other day I heard them playing that Ja Rule duet where the girl goes, "Love it when you fuck me, baby." Haaaayoooooo! They forgot to play the edited version. Young Erik Noisewater learned some new fun words in his car seat that morning. Some of the songs I never would have thought of until they popped up in the car 30 years later. For instance, "Freak Like Me" by Adina Howard.

This slice of R & B badd-assery came out a few years before Lil' Kim or Foxxy Brown. No woman back then was announcing that she was "freak," liked to hit it and quit it, and was every bit of a "dog" as the fellas, whilst she stuck her disproportionate derriere into the camera.

Hey, so I have to run. Baby Noisewater has a 1st birthday party for one of his little friends. That's our life now. Right or wrong. Anyone have any thoughts on old school rap, wrestling, song lyrics, or anything at all? Hit me up in 'dem comments!

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Senseless Updates About Snow, Property, and Running

Snow Day:

I got a snow day off from work so I spent the day with Baby Noisewater. Chicago got around a foot of snow on Friday, and it's still coming down on Saturday. Not much on the agenda on a snow day other than a snow journey, so I bundled the little guy up and outside we went. It's hard for him to walk in boots, which led to him falling face first into snow. He didn't even cry. His freezing face didn't even effect his mood. In fact, he was greeting strangers on the street by saying, "Hi." and then warning them, "coooooold." That's his version of small-talk banter with the neighbors.

"Hi! Coooold!"

It looks like the Noisewaters will be closing on a condo very soon and staying in the fine city of Chicago. Not only will I be a homeowner for the first time, but I'm pretty excited about some things that often escape me in shitty apartments such as in an unit washer/dryer, a dishwasher, a spare bedroom, and my very own parking space. I know these amenities come standard to a lot of you, but this is some high class baller-ass shit to a guy like me. Scrubbing dishes all these years has made me very humble, and it's time to finally kick back and relax.

I told you all a few posts ago that we have been making an extra effort to save money, and one way we are doing this is to use a Google Docs spreadsheet to log in everything that we spend for a month. I highly recommend trying this out to make yourself more self-conscious of all the junk you buy that you don't need. When you find yourself in the checkout aisle eyeballing that Payday candy bar, you suddenly think, "Do I really want to log that $2.12 into the spreadsheet?" Also, you and your spouse will be keeping each other accountable. It's not uncommon after telling your spouse about an expenditure to hear in return, "Did you put in on the sheet?" It actually works. Try it out for a month and come on back to leave in the comments how it worked out for you.


I also let you guys know a few posts ago that I was signing up for the Chicago Marathon that will take place in October. Actually, it's 238 days, 19 hours, 42 minutes, and 10 seconds away. Well, I got in! No backing out now. This will be my second one, and I'm a hell of a lot older now. I'm sort of training early, helping my buddy Night Train who has his first marathon in the Spring in California. His program calls for a long slow run every Sunday, which is perfect because I'm slower than he is. This Sunday is supposed to be a 12-miler, but with this snow we might go with the treadmills. It's pretty boring on the machines, but you can watch basketball, talk to your partner next to you, and the ones we use have courses with little TV screens showing you running your route in different locations complete with little facts along the way. Last week I chose running up and down the Haleakalā volcano in Hawaii because I sort of did that in Hawaii on my Honeymoon. Some dudes picked us up in a van at like 4AM to drive us up the volcano, we watched the sun come up appearing to be coming up through the mouth of the volcano like it was giving birth to the sun , and then we coasted down on bikes. Then we had the whole day beginning having already done all that awesome shit. It was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. Watching on the little screen at the gym wasn't quite as amazing, but at least it reminded me of a good time.

Hey, that's all I got, friends. Sorry nothing mind-blowing or eye-opening today. Just updates on the little life I lead. Leave a comment if you gave this a read and maybe I'll say something super in return.