Go Ask Your Father: Overflow, Driveways, Hitchhikers, Puberty

I’ve been having lots of fun with the GoPro. Yesterday I attempted my first time lapse video. It turned out okay. It ended up only lasting 8 seconds. DW’s dad has 16 cords of wood he needs split and stacked so I was going to try and do a time lapse showing how much we got done. When your help has a combined age of 14, you don’t get much done. Today I changed the perspective from the same vantage point. I set the camera in the same spot, but this time I focused on the stacks we were making. I’m still in the editing process so I’m not sure how it’ll turn out yet. Today’s combined age was 79 (DW helped). Nix that. My computer had trouble, or Windows Movie Maker had trouble with the 4,918 photos from the time lapse video. I will have something else for you, though. Also I have some exciting new blog linto share, too. See you tomorrow!

2. What does overflow mean?

This one is a spin off from a question that was asked earlier. That hole in the sink has a purpose and it’s not for getting fingers stuck in. It’s an overflow drain. But was is overflow? Sometimes in order to explain a certain concept, a more basic concept needs to be understood first. For example, to understand that dad is going to eat 1/2 of your chocolate, you need understand what 1/2 means. So while explaining the overflow drain I had to digress and discuss overflow. It’s when you pour too much milk into your cup and it spills on the counter. It’s when you put too much water in the sink and it spills onto the floor. And, yes, even the toilet can overflow when it’s clogged. Since finding this out, Bang now flushes twice. Once when he’s done his business. Then again after he’s wiped.

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4. What’s a hidden driveway?

There is a twisty, turny, make-your-DW-carsick kind of road we travel sometimes on our way to the cottage at the lake. It makes me feel like I’m driving the Monaco Grand Prix.

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via GIPHY (and Formula 1 via YouTube)

Except that on the backroad cars can enter and exit the raceway road at any given time. Around any given blind turn. Over any given blind hill. So I try not to do 104 kmh. I do more like 60. Our RAV4 isn’t quite the high performance, low center of gravity that the F1 cars are. And I am not Mario Andretti. My mother-in-law thought she was one day, though.

6. What’s a hitchhiker?

Typically, a hitchhiker is someone on the side of a road with their hand making a fist with their thumb sticking out and pointing skyward. As far as I know it’s the international sign for “pick my ass up”. I’ve never hitchhiked. I’ve never picked up a hitchhiker either. Mostly due to a story (the way I remember it) I heard about my dad’s sister being forced to drive from Maryland to Pennsylvania. Where we live now, it’s almost an acceptable means of travel. We see the thumbers frequently. Have no car? Start walking. Eventually someone might pick you up. The hitchhiker in question here is a much different kind. This one is of the insect variety and therefore has no thumbs. Be it a butterfly or a dragonfly or a horsefly or even a spider (all except the horsefly are welcome riders) land on our kayaks for a brief rest. If it’s a dragonfly, I say, “Hi, Grandma.”

8. Why do you have hair on your pee pee?

It was just a matter of time before this one was asked. This one was easy, a level one, beginner parent kind of question. 99.99% households with kids know the bathroom is the ideal location for a family gathering. One never goes alone. The shower included. It saves time and water, though, to shower with the little imps. You get clean. They get clean. The bathroom doesn’t flood like Louisanna from a toddler pretending to be Shamu. So when I was asked this I simply told him it was because I went through puberty and that he will too when he is 12 or so. I was seriously prepared for the “What’s puberty?” question, but it never came. I guess the answer I provided was sufficient. Surprisingly, there was no overflow of questions.

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Go Ask Your Father: Bavaria, Blast Offs, Bible, and A Bottle

Just by sheer coincidence, today is all about B words. None of them is the word “Baby”, however. As we learned from Bang yesterday, they come from the Civic Center and cost over 900 million dollars.

1. Where is Bavaria?

2c57f931f3b7bb313f223d7a1c75ae66Nanny and Pop had just started a 2,000 piece puzzle of a beautiful castle. Neuschwanstein Castle, to be precise. This fairytale castle is located in the hills of the southern German village of Hohenschwangau. Constructed over a period of 23 years it was finished in 1892 and commissioned by  Ludwig II of Bavaria as his retreat. I have a hard enough time getting the boys to clean our place as it is. I’d never get them to clean this place. Though, I suppose if we had a place like this we wouldn’t have to clean it. We’d be able to hire someone to do it. 10 days later the puzzle is nearly completed. It looks just like the image here except it’s 2 feet by 3 feet.

2. Does a rocket launch put pressure on your chest?

Crash is concerned about this because he has expressed interest in being an astronaut when he grows up. I would be seriously jealous of him should he ever get the chance to leave Earth’s gravity. Anyway, he’s concerned that because of his heart surgery he won’t get to live the dream. We felt we needed clearance from his doctor to do Tae Kwon Do. Nevermind the g-forces getting to space would exert. It’s 3. Three g’s is equivalent to weighing three times what you do on Earth. I’m only twice his weight. So yes, there’s a bit of pressure. I explained to him that there are many other jobs than just going to space. There are the rocket builders, the space suit builders. There are astronaut trainers, doctors, high tech command controllers. There’s also a lot of math.

3. Who wrote the bible?

This one arose while standing in church one Sunday morning. It’s one the few places Crash and Bang play nicely together, even though they’re not supposed to be playing at all. Anyway, the Bible was written over a period of about 1,500 years. It is comprised of 66 books and 1,189 chapters. It has about 40 authors – 30 in the Old Testament and 10 in the New Testament. Many regard Moses as the original author. I’m not that old. Though, if I keep being woken up at 5 am by two kids, I’m sure I’ll feel as old as Moses.

4. Did you get my water bottle?

True story. Yesterday morning we’re headed out the door. Bang and I were going to drop off Mom and Crash at school so we could have the truck to go to playgroup. Three of us were already in the truck, fully buckled and waiting patiently. DW comes out of the front door with her arm load of school stuff and hollers to me. I didn’t understand. All the windows were up, the heat was blasting inferno the boys were chatting. I give her a quizzical look and the I don’t know what you just said, hands in the air gesture. She repeats herself. This time I catch something about her water bottle. At a quick glance I see it in her hand (along with her lunch and school bag) and think she asked me if I filled it. I open my door and am about to tell her, “No I didn’t fill it” when she hollers, “Did you get my water bottle?” That’s when she realizes it’s in her hand.

We got a good laugh out of it. I told her that’s a question for Friday’s blog questions. So here it is. Have I seen your water bottle? Yes, it’s in your other hand. The last time you did that you were pregnant with our first born. And if you’re preggo now, you’ve got some explaining to do.

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Go Ask Your Father: Speeding, Chicks, Blind & Implosions

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First Down?

What a week it’s been. A finished igloo. A collapsed igloo in 6 (42) degree weather and now we have another snow storm targeting us today. We might get 25 cm (10 inches). We might get 40 (16inches). We’ll only know when it’s all done. I guarantee there will some igloo restoration taking place. But for now, the kids are asleep. I’m writing. DW is Facebooking and checking out the trailer for the up coming Grey’s Anatomy. We smell a three day weekend coming.

1) Why do cops go fast?

Presumably, so they can catch your father when he thinks he’s Mario Andretti. Speaking of going fast, true story 1. My mother-in-law was driving my parents truck one day after dropping us off to go kayaking. When she got home she was asked “How fast were you going?” My stepfather-in-law was following her but she was nowhere in sight. “100” she told him. Here in Canadaland, that would be kilometers per hour, only 60 mph. However, what she forgot was that she was driving an American vehicle. Yes, she did 100 mph all the way home. True story 2. A friend was pulled over for speeding and the officer asked why she was going so fast. Her response? “I was just on my way to the hospital to get the lead removed from my foot.” She was let off with a warning and a good laugh.

2) What do baby crows look like?

Well chickie (because DW asked this one), they look like baby crows, of course. We had to google it. They look like black peeps. Or more the typical yellow, fluffy baby chicken. Except black. And like most baby birds, they are also called chicks. And a whole bunch of them together is a murder. I like to say there’s a murder in the backyard. We like to feed them. Leftover peanut butter sandwiches mostly. Sometimes leftover pancake, if it doesn’t have chocolate in it. Sometimes we give them peanuts still in the shell because it’s fun to watch them crack it open. They’re really smart birds. I mean, check out this girl who started getting “gifts” from the crows she fed for years.

3) What do blind people see? Black or White?

Depends on which ref you’re talking about. But either way, bad calls will be made the entire game. Some refs can see light. However, everything is so blurry and fuzzy they can’t tell a soccer ball from a hockey puck. Other’s who are properly, or totally blind (NLP – No Light Perception) you would think see nothing. A black nothingness. Turns this is never true. Damon Rose explains,

How do I even begin to describe it? Let me have a go. Right now I’ve got a dark brown background, with a turquoise luminescence front and centre. Actually it’s just changed to green… now it’s bright blue with flecks of yellow, and there’s some orange threatening to break through and cover the whole lot.

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And it’s ever changing…

4) What’s an implosion?

When Crash asked this, I asked him, “What’s an explosion?” in return. After he answered that it’s when something blows up, I let him know that implosion was the opposite. Kind of like what happened to our igloo in the rain, except MUCH faster. Mythbusters are famous for “blowing crap up”. But last week they tried to implode a train. See, when things get really hot, then get sealed off, it creates a vacuum as it cools down and the air inside condenses. -29 point something millibars of mercury is a perfect vacuum. They got the train car down to -27. It didn’t implode. They had to make an “accidental” adjustment to the tank car. The result was impressive

 

The Frequent Flyer

Frequent Flier on the Daddy Express
Taxiing down the hallway
cleared for take-off
by the mother ship.
We’ll fly through turbulence
of giggles
Smoothing into easy skies
of smiles.
Buckled in by blankets
cradled as my carry-on
We’ve enough fuel
to last until feeding.
These wings never tire
Daddy Express is
a non-stop lover.
It goes anywhere,
anytime. Free.
Cleared for final descent
Lets make a final pass
before touchdown
into your mother’s arms.
It’s your connecting flight
Mommy Express,
going everywhere that daddy goes.

*A little something I penned sometime during Crash’s infant stage. He loved flying around the living room. Then came Bang four years later following in his brother’s contrails.

Gaining Rank in Parenting

I’ve finally been promoted. After eight years (12 with their combined age) I’ve gained the rank of “Mean Dad”. Crash promoted me a few days ago when I wouldn’t let him walk to McDonald’s with the neighbors kids (as it turns out, the neighbors kids weren’t allowed to go either). He desperately wants to be independent and on his own and away from us parent types. However, he hasn’t quite grasped the concept of responsibility. Continue reading