Monthly Archive for: ‘January, 2010’

Kurt Warner Retires

If you believe what he just said in his press conference, Kurt Warner has officially retired (See, Favre? That’s how it’s done! None of this wishy-washy retiring business). His is one of the greatest and most improbable stories in NFL history, to say the least.

After playing in college, he was not drafted by an NFL team. He then tried out for the Green Bay Packers in 1994 but did not make the team. He (now-famously) stocked shelves at a grocery store for $5.50/hr until he signed with an AFL team in 1995. He was eventually signed as a third-string quarterback to the St. Louis Rams in 1998. Teammate’s injuries forced the coach to use Kurt Warner as a “temporary” starting quarterback. In his first four games as a starting quarterback in the NFL, Warner threw a total of 14 touchdowns. He led the Rams to a Super Bowl victory that same year, throwing for 414 yards in the big game (still the most ever in a Super Bowl game). He received league MVP as well as Super Bowl MVP awards in the same season. He had a few more good seasons–including a second Super Bowl appearance–followed by a couple of shaky seasons, and the Rams released Warner in 2004.

He immediately signed a two-year deal with the Giants. After starting the 2004 season with a 5-4 record, the Giants benched Warner in favor of the rookie Eli Manning, who finished the remainder of the season with a 1-6 record. Warner signed with the Arizona Cardinals in 2005 and had two tumultuous years in which he was benched and replaced with untested quarterbacks several times. In 2008, the Kurt Warner of old was back. He made all his former teams and coaches look silly for benching (or releasing) him in the past. With the exception of losing the Super Bowl, his 2008 postseason was the best on record. He set the yardage record and tied the postseason touchdown record. The 2009 season saw him break more records and reach career milestones (such as reaching 200 career touchdowns). He had a playoff game with 5 passing touchdowns against the Green Bay Packers but was nearly shut out by the New Orleans Saints the following week. After enduring several sacks and a brutal block-from-behind following an interception, Warner left the game for a time. The Cardinals suffered a 31-point defeat to end the season (and Warner’s career).

Now the talk has shifted to “does Kurt Warner deserve to be in the Hall of Fame?” Some rankings and records in favor of Warner:

  • Career pass yards in Super Bowls: 1,156 (1st)
  • He owns all three of the highest yardage performances in Super Bowl history.
  • Pass yards in a single postseason: 1,147 (1st)
  • Career MVP awards: 2 (T-3rd)
  • Career Pass Yards Per Game: 258.8 (2nd)
  • Career completion percentage: 65.4% (2nd)
  • Pass Touchdowns in a single postseason: 11 (T-1st, Joe Montana)
  • Highest completion percentage in a single regular-season game: 92.3% (1st)
  • Consecutive 300+ yard passing games: 6 (T-1st)
  • Number of games to reach 30,000 total yards: 114 (T-1st, Dan Marino)

The common arguments against him are his refusal to rush for yards and his tendency to be very streaky (in both the negative and positive aspects of the word), but the general feeling has shifted and most experts now believe he belongs in the NFL Hall of Fame.

Bye, Kurt. Now who will be my wife’s fantasy quarterback?

Fun With Gift Wrap

We got a package of “leftover” gifts that my parents forgot to bring with them when they visited at Christmas. Stephen has improved at opening presents in the past month. He was having quite the good time with the wrapping paper by the time my wife turned on the camcorder. There is also a compilation of videos from Christmas day that I just uploaded, which I’m sure is terribly boring to people outside of my family.

Useless Facts [Part 6]

  • As you may have guessed, giraffes are very susceptible to throat infections.
  • The Mormon Tabernacle Church in Salt Lake City was built without any nails.
  • In tennis, the term “love,” meaning zero, comes from the French l’oeuf which is an egg, as in goose egg.
  • Zachary Taylor never voted in a presidential election–not even his own.
  • The odds against a flipped coin coming up with the same side showing ten times in a row are 1,023 to 1.
  • Abraham Lincoln was carrying Confederate money when he was assassinated.
  • The shell is 12% of the weight of the entire egg.
  • The biggest playing field in sports? A polo field: 12.4 acres.
  • Liberace once used the stage name Walter Busterkeys.
  • Paul Revere took his midnight ride on a horse named Brown Beauty.
  • In China, the day a child is born it is considered one year old.
  • An armadillo can be housebroken.
  • Rudyard Kipling would write only with black ink.
  • In many species of birds, the eyes weigh more than the brain.
  • The P.F. in P.F. Flyers stands for Posture Foundation.
  • Before 1859, baseball umpires sat behind home plate in rocking chairs.
  • The term “senator” comes from the Latin “senex” which means “old man.”
  • Insects can shiver.
  • Until 1869, the master’s degree was an honorary award.
  • In days of long ago, when railroad men patronized brothels, they left their red lamps outside–such was the derivation of the red light district.
  • A bee uses 22 muscles to sting someone.
  • The stopwatch seen on television’s 60 Minutes is made by Heuer.

No More Tears… For Dinner

January 18, 2010

Rash/Hives, New Skills

Okay, so maybe Stephen isn’t allergic to pineapple. Maybe the timing was just a coincidence. It seems that what he had was hives that started on his trunk and spread to his appendages before disappearing. This is not uncommon in children ages 6-24 months, especially when recovering from a fever (which he was, at least for the second outbreak). He has been fine for almost a week now. Sleeping 10 consecutive hours a night, no sign of hives.

Stephen is getting faster every day. He is also becoming more of a terror every day. He is like “I can move, and I will move… constantly.” He is even starting to attempt escaping from his high chair. He absolutely hates getting his diaper changed because he has to sit still for two whole minutes, and I don’t let him roll over and crawl around. It takes three times as long as it should to snap his outfit back together because he is throwing a fit and kicking and screaming by then.

All other aspects of taking care of him have gotten much easier, though. I do not have to warm up the milk or juice that I give him–he can take it straight out of the fridge. This means it takes 30 seconds to prepare a bottle instead of 5 minutes. He can also hold his own bottle. I haven’t fed him on my lap in a long time; I just put him in the playpen and hand him his bottle. If he is sleepy, he just falls asleep while drinking it. He is also more skilled at eating solid food, which makes it 3x faster. Also, I do not have to meticulously rock him to sleep. I can just wait until he’s sleepy, take him upstairs and set him in his crib, and walk out of the room. When I go back to check on him five minutes later, he is generally asleep.

He can sit in a regular shopping cart now in the the standard backwards-facing toddler seat by the handle bar. Grocery shopping yesterday was a breeze… he never even dropped the pacifier out of his mouth until we got to the registers. He just looks around, fascinated with everything at the grocery store. After I cross something off the grocery list, I hand him the pad of paper and tell him to “double check it.” He thinks he’s actually helping. When we get to the baby food aisle, I let him pick out which food he wants. His arbitrary selections amuse me a lot more than him.

Now if only I could teach him to stop unplugging every lamp in the house. I’m slowly replacing all the outlet covers with these nifty ones that snap shut when you unplug something from the outlet. They have little spring-loaded covers that you slide to the side when you plug something in. I’m sure I will end up losing the original cover plates in the next few years, and everything will have these ugly kid-proof plates.

NFL Shows Lack of Parity, Favre Shows Lack of Judgment

Wow. Way to go, NFL. Worst playoffs ever. There were so many blowouts and boring games, I don’t even know where to begin. Despite there being some upsets along the way, the two teams with the best records made it through to the Superbowl. How boring. We could have predicted three months ago that these would be the two teams that made it to the Superbowl, and we would have been right. Where’s the drama? Where is this “parity in the NFL” that we hear so much about?

The playoffs ended on a pretty deflating note last night. Brett Favre, after coming out of retirement again and exceeding everyone’s expectations, proved he is still Brett Favre (and that is not a good thing). With his team in field goal range, he decided to make a risky throw on 3rd & 15 that was intercepted. Keep in mind that it was a tie game with fifteen seconds left in the 4th quarter. The reckless gunslinger had to take one more shot–had to throw away yet another season trying to be a hero. All he had to do was hold onto the ball and run a couple of open yards and the Vikings would have been able to kick a field goal and win the game in the final seconds. Instead the Saints marched down the field in overtime and won the game 31-28 because Favre had to try to win the game all by himself. It was all too similar to the NFC championship game in the 2007 season, where Favre was an interception machine and single-handedly lost the game for his team.

What a letdown.

Some earsauce News

Well, Steve spent maybe ten hours here yesterday. I think we finished our album, at least the recording aspect of it. I just have to get everything in order and make sure all the fade-betweens are perfect. I’m happy with it. It’s the best of everything we have, and it’s 78:45 out of a possible 80:00 that can fit on a cd. Couldn’t squeeze more on there if we tried. So, we’ll see what happens. It seems the rates for mastering have gone up, but I’ll try to get the old rates honored. With the new rates it will cost us between 900-1000 dollars. Ouch. We now have gathered about a hundred bucks through our bandcamp site, and Steve has put forty bucks into the pot. Not quite there yet by any stretch, but we’ll make it happen.

Steve and I are going to try to set up a scheduled weekly time to work on stuff. We can’t exactly call it band practice because we don’t practice, but it’s like a combination Super Nintendo and audio recording time.

We went bowling this morning and Stephen’s nap schedule is completely screwed. He has slept for a total of 30 minutes all day, when he should have woken up from a 2+ hour nap a little bit ago. I just made the suggestion that we go grocery shopping right now so we could be finished by the time football starts, but then I realized the error of my ways when Stephen started to lose his temper and remind me that he needs to nap very badly. Jaime is upstairs feeding him and trying to put him down right now, and it doesn’t sound like she is having much success.

I contacted a title company to get the title of this house transferred to me and Jaime’s names. It is currently listed in me and my father’s names. We’d like to get it squared away before it becomes an issue down the road when/if we sell this place. I throw the “if” in there because ideally we would rent this place out when we buy a new house. We have less than 9yrs to go on this mortgage. Money situation is good right now. Hopefully we can pay off our new car or Jaime’s student loans (or both, but probably not) after taxes this year. Will be nice to not have a car payment again. If we paid off the car (which we just got last April) then we’d have 303 more dollars per month to play with. We shall see.

I Am So Angry With You, Elmo!

January 15, 2010

Elmo Faucet Cover

January 15, 2010

First Allergy?

Last night was a horrible night. Stephen woke up at 10:00pm, 12:30am, 2:30am, and 5:30am. Every time was full-on crying, screaming, and complete neediness.

About a week ago, Jaime put baby oil on Stephen after a bath because recently his skin is so dry. I presume the cold, dry weather is the main culprit. The next night, he had a rash all over his stomach and back. We checked the baby oil and this is what it says on the back…

HYPOALLERGENIC
MILD
DERMATOLOGIST TESTED
ALLERGY TESTED
PEDIATRICIAN TESTED

If rash occurs discontinue use.

We did not give it much thought besides mocking the obvious contradictions on the label. We stopped using baby oil on his skin, and the rash went away. Last night we tried a new solid food at dinner time. We gave him Fruit Medley Dessert and talked about giving him dessert for dinner. This morning, after last night’s debacle, we noticed a rash again. Around the same time he got his last rash, we tried another new food–Pears with Pineapple. My new theory is that the rash is caused by an allergy to pineapples. I think the allergy/rash is the reason he woke up so many times last night. If the rash clears up then we will try the baby oil again in a couple of days. It’s so hard to figure out. It’s also a little scary that the kid just breaks out in a bumpy rash like that. Allergies often have worse consequences that are unseen.

I hope I have it figured out. 2-3 hours of sleep just doesn’t cut it, and I’m worried about the little guy.

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