Sunday, August 30, 2009


Saturday night Lauren and I attended a wedding reception at the same place we had our wedding and reception seven years ago.

The caterer remembered us. Okay, not really us, but our wedding.

The woman who manages the place, Sharon, remembered us. Okay, not really us, but our wedding. Sharon showed us some pictures from our wedding that she uses as examples to new clients. She told us how she tells newly engaged couples about the picnic settings, the croquet games and Frisbees we had at our wedding and how they were a great use of the grounds. She told us she thinks of our wedding often when she is meeting with new couples.

This made Lauren and I feel good.

Sharon also told us how she has changed the contract she presents to potential clients. Due to our wedding the contract now strictly prohibits silly string, scaling walls, bicycles on the hill as well as a few other minor changes.

This made Lauren and I very happy.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Signature 2

I have been grilling a bunch this summer and over the weekend I needed a refill on my propane tank. As usual I signed a fake name to my credit card/debit card receipt. Since I was buying propane for my grill, I decided to sign my credit receipt as Bobby Flay. I posted about how I always change my signatures on credit cards here.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Cooler Than David Boreanaz

I wrote a list ( here) back in January of some of the topics I wanted to cover in this blog for 2009. Some of the topics from the list I have already written about; some have not happened yet (like winning the lottery).

It has been a good couple of weeks for this blog.

One item from the New Year list happened two weeks ago while I was on vacation and I am just now realizing it. According to Sitemeter (one of the stat trackers I use) I had my 500,000th visit to Poop and Boogies some time around August 7th. According to other tracking sites I have had more than 500,000 visits over the past 4 1/2 years but Sitemeter is one of the easier ones to figure out and to see the 500,000 number on their site was a goal of mine.

Another item from the list, is that I have now broken the 1000th post mark. This post, the one you are reading right now, is my 1001 post. I can't believe it. A quick count shows that Poop and Boogies has also received over 20,000 comments over the past 4+ years. I am sure 9,000 of them are from my brother Anonymous trying to Blog Jack me (I define Blog Jack as when a comment on a post gets more reaction from other comment-ers than the actual post). I want to thank every one who stops by here and reads my blog. Whether you comment or not I can see from the stats that people stop and read what I have written. It means a lot to me and I am very thankful that you read but sometimes getting comments makes the blogging thing all worthwhile.

I heard an interesting story about a somewhat popular blogger who hated when the comments on his/her blog were funnier than his/her actual posts. Apparently he/she would send nasty emails to the comment-ers telling them they had no "blog manners" and that they were trying to steal his readers. I don't know if that blogger still does that but, man...what a douche bag. I welcome blog jackers. The funnier the better. I am so appreciative of the fact that someone actually is taking time to add their thoughts to something I wrote. I should do a better job at acknowledging comments. I like the Bloggess' approach to comments. Everyday she posts "The comment of the day" which is the comment that she thinks was the funniest to her. Maybe I should start doing that.

The other day I was on Facebook and I did a quick search for Poop and Boogies and I was shocked/astonished/pleasantly horrified that someone started a P&B Fan Club. I emailed Alisha, the person who started it, and asked if I could post about the Fan Club here and tell other Facebook-ers to go join. I warned her that my brothers may comment and ridicule the fan club. Her response was "and if your brothers make fun of it, just remind them about how many fan clubs they have. None. "

Alisha, thank you so much for flattering me. Alisha is the "Fan Club Member #001 Extraordinaire" of the Official Poop and Boogies Fan Club on Facebook. If you use Facebook, go and join.

Alisha also told me she is not a stalker and that I am cooler than the other person's Fan Club she was a part of like 10 or so year ago.

I am cooler than David Boreanaz.

It has been a good couple of weeks.

Monday, August 24, 2009


My wife, although back to her pre-baby-pregnant-Jackson weight, was a bit concerned about wearing her new bathing suit on the beach last week.

She told me all the things she needed to consider when buying her new bathing suit, which I did not understand was such a complicated issue. She did not want an "old lady" suit. She wanted a two piece, but not a bikini. She did not want a "mom bathing suit" but at the same time she did not want a suit that said she was trying too hard to look young. She wanted something that looked good but was also comfortable and practical.

Like I said, it was complicated.

We were heading to the beach and I could tell she was somewhat self conscious about the suit.

"I am sure you will look great." I said, "Besides you will sitting next to me and in comparison to me you will look like a Victoria's Secret model."

"Thanks Bill. Its just that..." She paused. "Wait. What? Are you saying I don't normally look as good as a Victoria's Secret model?"

And at that point I shut up.

She looked great.

I sneaked a few pictures of her.

She won't let me post any.

Is it weird that I want my screen saver to be one of those pictures?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Stranger Celebrity

There was the time we left the Hatboro parade in the late 70's. My mom parked the car in the lot behind the retirement home. We couldn't leave because someone blocked us in. We waited for what seemed like hours. Finally the fat lady and the skinny man showed up and moved their car. We were so happy that we created a song at that very moment called "The Fat Lady and the Skinny Man." Not all of my family was there but the story has been told so many times that everyone thinks they were. The fat lady and the skinny man have provided my family with 30 years of a funny memory. Perfect strangers who will never know their celebrity status with my bothers and sisters.

There was the guy in Cape May back in the late 80's who bought my friends beer. My buddy Jeff , underage at the time, gave him money to get a case of Busch. While Jeff and a couple of other friends waited outside the liquor store they noticed that the guy's car had extra antennas and other official equipment in it. When the guy returned with the case of beer Jeff asked if he was a cop. The guy nodded. Jeff asked if he was going to be arrested. The guy said no. The guy placed the beer on the ground and walked away. I was not there but I have heard that story so many times, that sometimes, I believe I was. A perfect stranger who will never know what type of legend status he holds amongst a group of friends. Someone we don't know provides us with entertainment when the story is retold every time we get together.

There was that guy at Mallory Square during the Sunset Celebration in Key West in 2002. He held up a sign that read "Dirty Jokes 50 cents". A brilliant way to panhandle. I gave the guy a dollar and he told Lauren and I two dirty jokes. I gave him another dollar and I asked him to pose with my new wife of only a couple of days. Lauren sat on his lap, he made a dirty gesture and I snapped a picture. Lauren and I talk about the "Dirty Joke Man" all the time. A perfect stranger who will never know that he brings a smile to our faces a few times a year when Lauren and I talk about our honeymoon. He is a small celebrity in our lives and he does not know it.

When we were down the shore last week we stayed in a hotel/condo conversion that had a small pool. The kids and I went into the pool everyday in the late afternoon. We didn't really swim but just relaxed and floated. I made sure that Maxfield, Wyatt and Jackson all had their float-able tubes and what not and I would walk the pool making sure that they each were okay. Everyday we shared the small pool with other people from other units and I had to remind Max and Wyatt to keep the volume down.

One evening in the middle of the week Lauren joined us in the pool. I walked and waded in the pool next to my boys, just like I had the past few days, and Lauren swam and dove under Max and Wyatt, tickling their toes as she passed. The boys were having a blast with their mom. The only other people in the pool were three teenage girls who were chatting against the wall about 8 feet from us so I did not feel like I had to quiet the kids.

I started to feel a little jealous that I was not the one that was causing Max and Wyatt their giggles and laughter. I asked Lauren to keep an eye on Jackson and I swam to the far end of the pool. I called out to Max and Wyatt and said I was going to get them. They both turned towards me as I went under the water and pushed off the wall as hard as I could at them. The force of the wall kick caused my swim suit to slip down to my knees as I swam under Max and Wyatt. I quickly fixed them as I came up for air hoping that nobody saw.

"Daddy!" Max yelled from the other side of the pool. "I just saw your heinie crack. And it wasn't just a little bit, I saw the whole thing and it was really big."

I blushed. Lauren laughed. The three teenage girls busted out laughing. One girl was trying to stifle her laugh while the other girl could not contain herself. They laughed for a good ten minutes.

I am a perfect stranger to those girls and I know that in the future, if they are still friends, they will share a laugh over the guy in the pool with the really big butt crack.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Vacation, Past and Present

Last week we took our first real family vacation. All previous family vacations have either been day trips or treks from Orlando to Philly to visit family.

We went to Wildwood Crest NJ, which is the same shore town I used to go to when I was a kid for two to three weeks every summer. We stayed in a hotel/condo conversion two blocks from my dad's uncle's house, which was the house I stayed in when I was a kid. I couldn't help but point out landmarks and memories to Lauren and the kids.

"Look, there is Sunset Lake where we would go fishing and crabbing every year."

"Do you see that Aqua colored water tower? That was what I would look for to let me know I was close to the uncle's house."

"We used to pool hop there and there and there. And that is the place I lost my big toe nail in 82. It was either John or Pat that opened the door right across my bare foot and it tore the nail right off."

Overall we had a good time and I know that Maxfield and Wyatt had a blast.

At one point during the week Lauren questioned my selection of a certain breakfast item. The item in question was Entenmann's chocolate covered donuts. I bought like 3 boxes of them. There is something about the ocean side salt air that makes me crave chocolate donuts. That and the fact that I remembered that we always had donuts around when we were kids at the shore. Entenmann's Donuts and Cheez-Its remind me of the beach.

Lauren joked that maybe I was trying to re-live my childhood. I laughed it off and told her I just wanted the kids to have a good time and remember the shore as a great place.

When we got back home I was looking through the gazillion photos we took and some of them looked very familiar. So familiar that I went into the attic and dug out an old scrapbook.

Maybe Lauren was somewhat right about me trying to re-live my childhood. Or maybe I was just trying to give my kids a taste of the gift of the childhood I had.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Last year Lauren I took the kids to the beach for a couple of days. The boys had such a blast that for the next several months they talked about going to the the beach with their friend Stelly and how much fun they had in New Jersey.

When ever Wyatt would have a nightmare or be scared to go to bed for whatever reason I always sat with him and we would talk about the great time down the shore. I would suggest that he dream about digging in the sand, standing in the ocean, or going on rides at the boardwalk. Wyatt would smile, and remember the time fondly and close his eyes and drift off to sleep with happy thoughts.

This year Lauren and I took the kids to the beach for a full week. I am not saying that Wyatt is not having a good time but he is now afraid of the ocean, he got a black eye from the bumper cars, and he feels the same way about log flume rides as his father does.

Now when I try to calm him down at night with stories about the beach I am sure he will hear the screams of his dad wailing like a little girl. I need to come up with new "happy thoughts".

GoodNites is still running their Special Bedtime Moments contest. If you enter the contest you have a chance to win the grand prize which is a bedroom makeover or something.

Contest Rules: Go to Special Bedtime Moments and share a special bedtime moment shared by you and your family (can be a story, tip for getting kids to sleep or rundown of your nighttime routine).

Disclaimer: I have partnered with GoodNites for this series of posts; I am being compensated for writing about my family's bedtime routine and for promoting this contest, not for endorsing a product.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Raging at the Beach

I am on vacation this week. My choice of beach reading is Rage Against the Meshugenah, by another blogger Dan Evans. So far I am enjoying it. The vacation and the book.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Big Smile

Thursday, August 06, 2009

On Demand

My kids watch a television show or two in the morning, one around dinner time and, most nights, a show before bed time. These three times are when I need a little time for myself either to get stuff done or to just unwind. They watch in the morning because we are shaking out the cobwebs, getting ready for the day, making breakfast, SSS, feeding Jackson etc. The kids will sometimes watch a show while Lauren is making dinner. And I let them watch a show just before bed so I can take some time for myself to catch up on the news, have a cocktail or just surf on the computer. So, yes, essentially I let the TV babysit my kids for 22 minutes at night so I can have some "me" time. Selfish, I know.

When I click the On Demand button on my Verizon Fios remote control, I am usually doing it so my kids can watch an episode of Word Girl, Super Why or some other type of kids show.

When I hit the On Demand button on my Verizon Fios remote a few menus pop up with the categories of various shows or movies. I scroll down to the "Kids" tab, I press enter and then I search for shows. I find the show my kids want to watch and it takes 20 seconds to load into the cable box. The whole process take a minute to a minute and a half.

When I press the On Demand button, my kids are usually in the room, eyes fixed on the television, anxiously waiting to see Captain Huggy Face defeat Lady Redundant Woman. While I am trying to get to their program they are watching the commercials that automatically pop up on the upper part of the screen. The commercials are for the latest movies that Verizon Fios On Demand is pushing, such as Friday the 13th and Bloody Valentine. The previews show screaming people being chased by masked men carrying large sharp objects.

I know that that MPAA has approved that these previews are suitable for all audiences but, really, does FIOS need to run them while I am on the "Kids" menu? There has to be a better way.

The reason I am complaining is that these On Demand previews are giving my kids nightmares. One night Max woke up and told me about a dream he had with a guy getting a fork stuck in his eye. The next morning, when I asked him about the dream he told me he saw it on a commercial. I have not been able to figure out what commercial but I have to assume it was for a movie like Saw or The Ring. I am most positive that he saw this commercial while we were On Demanding.

Now being woken up at 2:00 in the morning is seriously cutting into my "me" time.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Dear Fisher-Price

Seriously, please consider making toy kid sized lawn mowers that actually cut grass. I would be able to get my lawn done in one-third the time. Well, maybe more like half the time.

Well, actually it would probably take twice as long with all the trips to the ER. So, never mind.

Sunday, August 02, 2009


When Maxfield broke his femur Lauren and I drove him to the local ER. They x-rayed his leg and confirmed the fracture but were unable to treat him due to their lack of a Pediatric Orthopedic Specialist. They sent us to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, CHOP for short.

CHOP had to do their own evaluation and run their own tests on Max's leg. The pushing and prodding and twisting of his leg to get the x-rays was extremely painful for Max. Now he had to go through it twice. While being pushed and prodded in CHOP's triage area Maxfield started screaming at the top of his lung's "This is the worst hospital I have ever been to." Which was very funny because, well, you know, he has only been to two.

Someone must have heard him screaming (every body on the floor heard him) and they sent in a specialist. This specialist entered the room, evaluated the situation, and quickly began working on calming Max down. She talked directly to Max and started teaching him breathing techniques to help ease the pain.

"Take deep breath, hold it for a couple of seconds and then push all the pain away when you exhale. Blow the pain away." She said over and over again demonstrating with long audible exhales. She made sure that Lauren and I were watching her so we could help Max manage his pain when she had to leave. This specialist was not a doctor or a nurse, nor do I think this person had any kind of medical degree. She was a volunteer. She was incredible.

Later that night when Max would wake up every five minutes, with severe muscle spasms and intense amounts of pain, I would start coaching him to blow the pain away. The spasms would last for a couple of minutes and Max would, between tears and sobs, huff and puff his way through them. I would end the final moments of the spasm by whispering in his ear, "Push the pain out with your breath. Whoooooooow. Push the pain out with your breath. Whoooooooow. Push the pain out with your breath. Whoooooooow." Max would drift off to sleep for another five minutes before another spasm would hit and we would start all over.

For the two weeks following our hospital stay, at least once a night, I would have to coach Max to blow out his pain. I know we were sent to CHOP to make sure that Max would see a Pediatric Orthopedic, but I am glad we were sent to CHOP so Max and I could see the volunteer.

The cast came off at the end of June and Max is doing really well. The doctor said he is healing exactly as he should be but he won't be back to normal for another 6 or so months. The muscles surrounding his thigh are still somewhat atrophied but are slowly returning to normal. As a result of the fracture Max's right leg is a centimeter or two shorter than his left leg. This causes a very awkward gate and limp when he walks.

A few nights ago I was watching Max play with some kids at the park. The kids were running in a pack from one end of the field to another, using soccer nets as their start and finish lines. Max could not keep up the pace. He was always about 15 yards behind the group. At one point the group stopped at a soccer net and Max kept running. He ran right past them. The other kids started sprinting to catch up to Max. Just as they were on his heels, Max's leg gave out and he went sprawling into the grass. The other kids kept running. Max lay still for a few moments but he then slowly stood up, brushed himself off and hobbled to the other soccer goal.

I watched it all from a distance and my heart was breaking for Maxfield. I found myself welling up and whispering under my breath to myself, "Push the pain out with your breath."


Here is a great link for parents. Save it in your favorites. It has tips and information about dealing with trauma After the Injury.