Archive for September 8th, 2009

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Parenting Is A Skill

September 8, 2009

I like joking around with my kids, and I love to tease them. They’re getting older now, but for a while, my daughter thought I could fly, but only at night, when she was asleep. And my youngest son is just now figuring out that we’re not actually from outer space.

This old joke is also wearing thin:

  • “Daddy, what’s for dinner?”
  • “Mushroom soup and salad.”
  • “Daddeeeeeeeee …”

The odd prank is fun, too, like short-sheeting a bed, or the time I covered tennis balls in icing and served them for dessert. See, I had real cupcakes waiting once the initial confusion turned to laughter. That was funny.

This is not funny:

In case you can’t tell, that’s the box for an XBox, and this kid is really excited. At first, he’s incredulous, and you can tell this is a kid who is not used to good things happening to him. The riotous laughter accompanying his crushed slump says it all about things in this house.

I hope someone figures out who he is and sets up a Buy The Sad Kid An XBox campaign. Then again, his parents would probably spend it on socks or something.

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Worst Music Video Ever of the Week: Runaway

September 8, 2009

Here’s a strange mid-80s video from Luis Cardenas, the drummer for the band Renegade, who apparently also did some solo work. This is a cover of Del Shannon’s pop hit Runaway, done in a hair-metal way. Go ahead, let it play. Hmm. Okay, we have all the stock ingredients of a rock video from this era: big-haired singer, a set of drumsticks, some relationship angst, dark alleyways, Bon Jovi-like vocals, dinosaurs … wait, what?

This video is a real favourite of mine, despite its weird combination of every 80s video cliche, plus a dinosaur hooker. Nothing about it should work, but it all does, from Cardenas’s crazy voice to his bizarre facial expressions (making faces was a staple of metal lite videos at this time, kids) to the stop-motion dinosaurs to Del Shannon’s cameo at the end. Even the magic tiger drum kit, with its Sammy’s Super T-Shirt action, is funny.

Maybe I just have a soft spot for singing drummers. There’s something about singing drummers that just cracks me up every time, particularly in live circumstances, when the vocals just seem to be coming from nowhere.

Anyway, while you may laugh at this video — I know I do — you should know that Cardenas is a kick-ass drummer and all-around cool guy. Read more about him here. And while I never liked Renegade, they were a popular band; I think this line from the Wiki says it all: “The band was honored in August 2001 at a David Hasselhoff hosted event at the Conga Room, in Los Angeles for record sales in excess of 30 million units worldwide.”

When my life draws to a close, I hope to be able to say I was once honoured by David Hasselhoff. But I’d settle for working with dinosaurs.

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10 Ways Google Got You Here

September 8, 2009

Several times a day, people land here at Weather Station 1 by typing “topless weather” into Google. I don’t know why that phrase points here, but I’ll take it. I suspect my site has a rare combination of topless and, of course, the name Weather Station 1.

WordPress offers some very solid stats and tracking information, so I am able to see, daily, how people arrived here. Aside from “topless weather,” here are some other leading search phrases.

  • … buff carrot top
  • … megan fox naked
  • … shirley jones naked
  • … megan fox looks stupid
  • … worst rap video ever white guys
  • … fur shorts
  • … hayden bloom northeastern
  • … muscle bound teens
  • … pictures of wife naked
  • … nacket wife pictures
  • … weiners
  • … i think i saw a man wearing a bra
  • … how to dispose of a dead skunk
  • … does walmart carry KY intense

The fact that these things were search subject says a lot about you, but the fact that they led here says even more about me.

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Today’s Moron: Khamir Grant

September 8, 2009

This 15-year-old from Brooklyn learned a tough lesson this weekend about handguns. He was out with his friends, wearing his saggy pants, a pistol in his waistband. In other words, he was really, really cool. Until something happened:

He shot his own cock off.

I guess I shouldn’t make light of what happened to him. He’s just a kid. But he’s a kid with a gun. He’s a kid swept up in a stupid world that encourages and endorses criminal behaviour, a world where it’s easier for a kid to buy a cheap handgun than cheap alcohol. A sad world.

Guns are attractive. We all know this. We watch action movies, or crime dramas, and we like the shootouts. Remember that scene in The Matrix? “We need guns. Lots of guns.” Tell me that isn’t cool. I recently saw Shoot ‘em Up and Wanted, two okay movies that dwell on the cult of the handgun in a big way. How about Equilibrium, with Christian Bale’s gunkata martial arts?

By liking these things, are we contributing to the problem? Are we telling young people that they should be carrying firearms? I don’t think so. I’m in my 40s, and I watch action flicks. I like watching people fight … when it’s fiction. And I continue to do so, as I did as a kid. I liked all those things as a teenager, but the closest I got to illegal weaponry was the time we found an old stop sign in the ditch, took it to the school metal shop and made ninja throwing stars out of it.

But I had strong parenting. A lot of people don’t. Whether they live in Brooklyn or small-town Ontario, Canada, England, the U.S. or wherever, there are some kids adrift. And when handguns are that easy to find, shootings happen. In this case, Khamir — who I will conclude is not very bright, given the position he’s put himself in — made a series of stupid decisions that have guaranteed he’ll never be the same again.

My oldest son loves guns. He loves war, soldiers, video games, anything to do with firearms. And that used to worry me a bit. But he’s lucky — and I’m lucky, I suppose — that his stepfather is an avid hunter and shooter, so he’s learning the real rules of firearms, the safe way to shoot, from someone who knows the danger signs and understands how to balance that gun fascination with the real world. I’d like to think that my kid can play Halo without feeling the need to hide a stolen handgun in his waistband.

Anyway, let’s hope Khamir feels better as his case works its way through the courts. And let’s hope his story inspires at least one other teen moron to chuck that illegal pistol in the river.

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