Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Father-daughter Dance

In our culture, the father-daughter dance is a tradition upheld in most weddings, one in which the father dances with the bride, kind of a poignant summation, a handing off of his little girl with one last nostalgic dance to their favorite song, something very meaningful to both of them.  This was the background that Lafawnda and I were presented with when we began working on our dance months ago.

Various relatives and friends had suggestions of various kinds.  This was the result of that - and then I'll let you in on the conclusion!

We picked a slow song, something quite sentimental and sweet.  As the Disc Jockey played it, we began our dance:

We were serious as is appropriate for this sad occasion.  After all, as bhb said, I am giving my daughter away and that is heart wrenching.  We continued this way for awhile:

Unfortunately, the photographer missed some of the steps taking place.  What you see in this picture is Lafawnda right after she has shown her boredom and I am talking to the DJ, asking him what the heck he is playing???

This was all planned.  When Lafawnda and I truly examined our relationship, what really stood out was our relationship with Popeye!  No, really.  When she was little, around four or five, we would faithfully set aside time every day and watch Popeye!  She could imitate Olive Oyl perfectly.  This represented our relationship to a tee.

I sent an email - and this was the early days of email, mind you, but I worked in that industry - to the syndicate that owned the Popeye cartoons at that stage.  I said that I was Lafawnda's father and that we watched Popeye every day, like clockwork.  Delightfully, they had the great sense to have Popeye himself respond!  He sent an email to Lafawnda and she was in 7th Heaven!  She saved that email somewhere and we are hoping to find it again some day.

So, she and I went online and found a Popeye Sailor's hat and a corncob pipe being sold for Halloween.  We ordered it well ahead of time and on the day of the wedding, it was safely folded and tucked into my tuxedo!  So, we had it set up that when signaled, after we had shown our disdain for some packaged, schmaltzy dancy, he faded it out and faded in The Popeye Theme!  As he did so, I pulled out the sailor hat and the pipe and we finished our father-daughter dance representing who we really were:

It was our dance of true celebration all the way!  The people in attendance absolutely loved it!

Friday, September 28, 2012


Padmini, the light bringer for the LBC, has brought us the topic today and I apologize for being late to the party.  I will let you know in later posts what the delay was about and why I have posted so little lately.  Hint: it has to do with helping other people and the Lady Fossil and I are just fine.

All of us have accused others of and been accused of being two-faced at some time or another.  Oh, please!  We have many more than two at our ready use and I would argue that properly applied, that is a good thing.  It can actually mean we have more integrity and honesty, not less.

For example, as I age, my face is not the face of my youth.  Abraham Lincoln said, 'The face you have at 40 is the face you deserve.'  Of course, 40 was pretty old in Abe’s day and I’d add about 10 years or so at this point.  Or 20+ in my case, as today’s face reflects the experiences and my attitudes toward them.  I enjoy the changes as I gray and wrinkle, my face being written like a novel in development.

I also enjoy looking at that face in the morning while preparing for the day then letting it go out into the adventure, responding in ways only others can observe.  And I know it changes depending upon circumstance and the company I keep.

How do I know these things?  I’m just guessing … but it’s an educated guess based on all the other faces I get to observe in action.

Now, a lead-in to an approaching post: what are these faces saying?


Friday, September 21, 2012


This topic was brought to us this week by Ramana.  He chose it long ago and he doesn’t really seem like the type of guy prone to it.  But, we all experience it at some point in our lives.  It will be interesting the see what the other members of the Loose Blogger Consortium relate it to!  I’ll be checking them out and I encourage you to do the same.  Links are on the right side of this page.

Sometimes, the most interesting thing about a word is its etymology, its origin.  A little research led to some surprises for me:

The English word panic was derived from the French word panique; derived from the Greek word Panikos, lit. "pertaining to Pan;" in sense of "panic, fright" short for panikon deima, from neuter of Panikos "of Pan," the god of woods and fields, who was the source of mysterious sounds that caused contagious, groundless fear in herds and crowds, or in people in lonely spots.


It seems there was a Greek legend that Pan used to hide in the woods and rustle bushes as travelers walked by, sneaking ahead to the next dark spot and doing the same until, finally, the person was running headlong through the forest in a … panic!

I was wrong going into this.  I had been told years ago that it was a term related to pan as the indication of “everything” and that it was an existential response to the sudden realization of “everything.”  That was probably a definition that Pan spread to cover his tracks, for the sucker was notoriously unethical.

I’ve experience panic, of course, and in a similar situation to those with things being rustled in the woods.  Mine was in a lonely spot, too.  I thought it was bears – but now I know it was Pan.

Mine was on the return from the outhouse in the dark of night as a child.  Where there is a dark void, strange sounds fill it, many imagined dangers and outcomes emerge.  I set speed records getting back to the house!  Fortunately, I was at a point when I was at my lightest.

Thursday, September 13, 2012


Why I came up with this topic months ago for the Loose Blogger Consortium I'm not really sure.  I wasn't being prescient about Grannymar falling and hurting herself, honest.  At least, I don't think I was.  No, what I had in mind was probably ...

American football is a high impact sport.  You have to willingly give yourself to the sport or you should really get out.  Why?  Because fear or hesitation puts you at a disadvantage that can get you hurt.

Even if you play it well, even if you are a marvelous athlete with strength, speed, balance and good instincts, it will deliver pain your direction.  One of the first lectures I received from a football coach - and this was a good one floating in a sea of inanity to be honest - was on the difference between pain and injury.  The coach told us that this was one of the most valuable lessons to be learned from playing football, the ability to distinguish the difference.  A lot of plays end and the next play begins with you as a player in pain.  Few plays involve significant injury.

Here are some of the things I learned about the two:

1.  Many of the most painful things are not injurious at all.  Like whacking your crazy bone will light you up, it really doesn't incapacitate you for very long.
2.  Some of the most injurious things hurt very little, if at all, at the time of injury.  I broke my arm pretty severely playing ball and it was not painful.  Until they set it.  And through the next week.  Oh, Lordy!
3.  Continuous exposure to pain makes it less noticeable.  As the season goes on, things that would really bother you at another time really don't matter to much.
4.  Those obsessed and blessed, those who have future aspirations and possibilities in the sport, have a different assessment of injury than the rest of us.  I actually heard a sportscaster ask a pro what he considered to be a serious injury and his reply was, "If it takes out a support member."  In other words, if it just hurts like hell, if it doesn't slow you don't or rob you of your strength, it is not serious.  One of our local pros had the bottom joint of one of his fingers amputated rather than being hindered by it and missing the playoffs!
5.  Coaches are much more likely to think it is merely pain than most players are.

Now, these truths actually apply pretty well to emotional pain, too.  In our lives, we have to determine those things which bring us pain but will pass as opposed to those things which will incapacitate us and leave scars.  Many soldiers returning from combat zones are emotionally scarred.  Most teenagers who have broken up with their first true love will recover just fine.  But, the teenager may experience his pain more immediately in some ways than the soldier and that is one of the danger signs.

That, to me, is one of the greatest lessons in life to be gleaned from American football.  I bet shackman knows what I'm talking about.  He was good!

I’m A Big Fan of Efficiency


I ordered a phone handset battery for our home.  The order shipped Sept. 7th from the East Coast of the United States.  It arrived two days later in Union City, CA which is the town sharing a common border to my town to its south.  That means, the battery was on September 9th merely 4.5 miles from my house.

Since then, they have sent it to various locations around the Bay Area as you can see above.  The route they have followed has added approximately 40 miles so far and the battery sits in Oakland, which is 15 miles to the North.

I think that if you give an estimated delivery date of 8 days after the item arrives within 5 miles of the ultimate destination, you have to send it around like this to justify the delay.

That’s my theory.  Do you have a better one?  In the meantime, if they had just left it in Union City, I could have simply walked down and picked it up.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Gee, It's Been a While

Well, it's like this, see (channeling Edward G. Robinson), I was busy.  Yeah, that's it!  Busy.

Lafawnda got married, busy, busy, busy.  But, we do have the photos now and I can start putting together some photo essays on a GREAT event for our family.

Then again, it all costs money and to make money, I still have to work.  Busy, busy, busy.  There's a reason they call it business.

Then, the customers had pent up demand.  More busy.

Oh, and my main computer crapped out on me.  That is my development system.  Develop (software) is what I do.  So, I went out and found a laptop that has become my new production machine.  But, it took quite a bit of doing to get it configured to have the speed and power necessary for development.  Whoda thunk that all I needed to do was generate a SQL Server Instance on an SSD attached via USB 3.0?  It's OK.  The thing is blinding now.

Anyway, I'm working my way back.  I'll be around.  But ... I'll still be busy!  At least I'm happy. :)

Friday, September 7, 2012

A Lesson From My Mother I Live By …

… or, at least try to.

This topic was brought to the Loose Blogger Consortium by Maria, the Silverfox.  It is excellent in my mind in both its simplicity and its relevance.  My observation is very much along the same lines.

My mother once told me that, “Everyone lives and everyone dies.  The trick is to LIVE all the way to your death.  Very few do.”

I think she is right and I am trying to live it out.  It’s a good life, but particularly poignant to me right now as my good friend and fellow LBCer takes in the passing of his father this week.