User Ping Pong

Sometimes the users get so focused on an issue they're having that they can't listen to the solution.

User: Something's up with my computer. I can't log in from home. Can you check it out?

Me: Sure.

*User calls again, 6 minutes later*

User: I still can't connect. Didn't you say you were going to fix it?

Me: I'm running some diagnostics on it, so you won't be able to connect for a bit.

User: Ok, I'm trying it now.

Me: No, it-

User: It won't connect.

Me: I know. That's what I'm saying. It's going to take a while before I can fix the issue, so you won't be able to connect for a bit.

User: *Click* Grr! It still won't connect!

Me: Would you like to try a Burrito Supreme?

When has something funny happened to you because someone wasn't listening to what you were saying?

Photopalooza, Part II

When you call for help, and then fix it on your own before I get there, I don't mind.
When I get to your desk and find this, I really don't mind!

Oh, and good luck logging in tomorrow...

This was so funny to me in the store, I couldn't stop laughing.
Now I can't remember what was so funny.

When Mom decorates the baby's room.

When Dad decorates the baby's room.

Pick a pic and top my caption!

Suing Santa

Grandma                                                         *          IN THE
            Plaintiff                                               *          CIRCUIT COURT
v.                                                                     *          FOR
Santa Clause                                                  *        CIVIL ACTION NO.: xxx-xxxxx
            Defendant                                          *          
            *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *

Grandma, Plaintiff, by Screwem and Suem, LLC, her attorneys, sues the defendant, Santa Clause, and in support, states as follows:
  1. Grandma, Plaintiff, is a resident of Arkansas.
  2. Santa Clause, Defendant, is a resident of the North Pole.
  3. The Defendant regularly visits and is engaged in business in Arkansas.
  4. This action arises from a sled accident which occurred on December 24, 2011 at the intersection of 12th Street and Vixen Road. Both are public roads in Arkansas.
  5. On December 24, 2011, the Plaintiff, Grandma, was carefully and prudently walking home on the sidewalk, when she was violently struck from behind by the Defendant's reindeer, named Rudolph.
  6. At the same time, a sled pulled by reindeer and operated by Santa Clause, Defendant, was traveling, and ran over the Plaintiff, causing the Plaintiff to sustain serious personal injuries.
  7. All of the Plaintiff's losses and injuries were, are and will be due solely to and by reason of the carelessness and negligence of the Defendant, Santa Clause, without any negligence or want of due care on the Plaintiff's part contributing thereto.
    WHEREFORE, this Plaintiff claims ONE BILLION DOLLARS ($1,000,000,000.00) in damages.
    Respectfully submitted,
    Screwem & Suem, LLC

    No wonder Santa goes by so many names and has an unlisted address...

    Nathan Fillian has resigned as Santa Clause.

Christmas Is Insulting

We've all heard the political correctness in our society refuse to label Christmas as "Christmas". We're supposed to call it the "Holidays" or other such nonsense. The thought is that we'll insult folks who don't celebrate Christmas.

The irony is that I've never met anyone who found the mention Christmas insulting. Two of my Jewish friends have specifically told me they don't mind hearing "Merry Christmas". Which makes sense to me since I don't mind hearing "Happy Hanukkah".

This got me to thinking about ways that Christmas could be truly insulting...


"Merry Christmas! You look like a drunk elf."

Not Insulting

"Merry Christmas! Thanks for the egg nog."


"Merry Christmas! If you don't believe what I believe, then you're probably an axe murderer who kicks puppies. Would you like to go to my church and get badgered some more?

Not Insulting

"Merry Christmas! Would you like to join us at our church tonight to find out what it's all about?


Merry Christmas! Did your family all go on a vacation to an undisclosed location without you...again?

Not Insulting

Merry Christmas! I hope you get to enjoy seeing your wonderful family again this year.

Have you ever met someone who was genuinely insulted by the mention of Christmas?

Nathan Fillian is Santa.

I'm a Diva

But not as much as Joseph Craven is.

He took the day off, which caused a ripple in the fabric of the universe that caused me to take an unday off.

Which is a convoluted way of saying I'm not here today (as usual) since I'm over at Joseph's place.

Come eat at Joe's and find out why I'm a diva.

Guest Post for Badly Drawn Bible

Today Jared Hollier is hosting me on his blog, Badly Drawn Bible.

I know I'm not known for my artwork, but I think you'll be pleased with today's effort.

Nay, you shall be amazed.

For it is amazing.

And you'll wish you thought of it first...

Things I Always Wanted to Do But Never Did Because I'm a Loserface

  • Be an actor
  • Play an instrument
  • Write a book
  • Go on an international mission trip
    • I did make it to Missouri once
  • Learn another language
    • Lo siento, pero no comprendo por que soy Gringo. Donde esta los banos?
  • Be a comedian
  • Start my own company
  • Invent something awesome
    • Like a ninja robot from outer space
  • Ride a unicycle
    • I settled for a pogo stick

What have you always wanted to do?

Evan's Christmas Wish List

Work's throwing a Christmas party this weekend. They asked what each employee's kid(s) would like as a (small) gift from Santa.

Evan's three months old.

He would like to stare at the ceiling fan for an hour, and maybe the Christmas tree for a bit as well, if there's time before his nap.

Since he can't tell us what he would like, we have to speak for him.

I'm no dummy. I won't likely have this opportunity again.

I asked for a robot (small). Or a tank (also small).

They also asked us to tell them something special about our child so they could personalize their Santa visit.

I didn't know it until I was writing it, but Evan:

  • Excels at trigonometry
  • Knows all his Boy Scout knots
  • Is researching the missing link
  • Built a nuclear reactor in his crib
    • This is true most mornings
This is going to be a great Christmas party!

What can your kiddo? What do you want for Christmas?

This post telegraphed straight from Serenity.

Showing Your Gratitude

It's Thanksgiving!

I'm thankful for:

  • A new job that's keeping me busy
  • A new son that smiles at me
    • and sleeps through the night
  • My wife who loves and supports me
  • Family that's close by
I hope you have a list, too.

But what I really want to talk about today is how you show your gratitude.

Does being thankful just give you the warm fuzzies and end there?

Or do you pass it on?

A new organization I've been introduced to this year is called Epic Thanks. Check it out.

A few of the other groups I like are:

What other great charities did I miss?

A Tale of Two Toms

My buddy Knox has some other buddies he's never told me about before. He knew I'd get jealous.

Today he broke his silence and introduced us to Mindy and Daniel Coleman. They have a son, Isaac, who has a rare blood disorder. Knox is trying to raise money for them to help with their medical bills (I don't know if you've heard, but that medical stuff is pricey with a capital $).

In exchange for a $5 donation, Knox is offering the chance to win a pair of Toms.

What could you do with a pair of Toms? Here's a few ideas:

  • Have one wash the car while the other cuts the grass.
  • Bring them along as bodyguards to your next performance review.
  • Start a new hippie hygiene product company - Toms of Maine.
  • Have one Tom stand on the other Tom's shoulders to reach high things.
  • Ask them to move that old piano you finally sold on Craigslist.
  • Claim you started that GPS company before they did.
  • Don't want to decorate the yard for Christmas? Here's some Toms for that.

What else could you do with a pair of Toms?

Interwoven Melting Pot Mixture, Idea Version 6

  • We have to wear ties to work on Thursdays and Fridays.
    • I hate ties.
      • Do you think if I explained this to my boss, she'd let me not wear the tie?
        • She doesn't have to wear a tie.
  • A co-worker quit this morning.
    • She'd been here for 3 hours.
      • We'll miss her.
  • Part of being the IT Guy at work is remaining calm. If you're freaking out and I'm not, it gives you a false sense of confidence in me and calms you down; which is half the battle. I don't freak out in front of users.
    • That's what server rooms are for.
  • Dear Corporate IT Users: Deleting your incriminating emails like a rabid squirrel on your last day of work is pure genius. We in the IT department were totally fooled, and have no way of retrieving those messages. Didn't see that one coming!
  • After 15 years in IT, I've come to a conclusion: I don't like it when things don't work. I like it when they do.
    • You're welcome.
  • Why do people still use physical calculators?
    • Our computers may not be the best, but they do have a built-in calculator. And Microsoft Excel.
Do you have to wear a tie to work?

Do you use a physical calculator?

Are you from South Dakota?

This post telepathically submitted by Nathan Fillian.

Evan's Jedi Mind Trick

Bet you wish your kid could do this!

What are you doing this weekend?

No boring answers!

If you don't have something exciting planned, then either plan something exciting or lie to us. Lying is perfectly acceptable on this site!

Performing for the Hidden Camera You're Sure Your Pastor Installed

I'm extra holy on Sundays.

I drive the speed limit. I let others merge. I hold the door for old ladies.


I'm very aware that I'm being watched.

That's why everyone else comes to church, isn't it? To judge me and my holiness?

I think our pastor even had a camera installed in the sanctuary. He checks the instant replay after the sermon to see if I was behaving this week.

He doesn't know it, but I'm on to him.

When I pull out my phone and load the Bible app, I tilt it toward the ceiling a bit so he can see I'm not just playing Angry Birds or Words With Friends. I only do that during baby dedications.

Time for some worship. Yes! The metrosexual worship leader is doing all Matt Redman songs! I'll just close my eyes and show off how I know all the words by heart.

Am I singing too loud?

Here comes the sermon. Time to bring my A-game. Uh-oh. Did he see my head bob just now during that genealogy? I'd better sit up straighter so I stay awake and he'll know I have good posture.

Maybe a hard candy will help me stay focused. Careful with the wrapper...careful! Whew, got through that one without so much as a peep. But did anyone see it? I hope not.

My wife just put her head on my people think she's asleep? Worse, do they think we're making out? I'd better put my arm up on the seat so folks can see the wedding ring. That'll take some of the curse off it.

Well, that was a good sermon. I think I did pretty well. I even tweeted a few verses so my Bible study leader will know I made it to church this week. Before we leave, I think I'll clean up some discarded bulletins and straighten a few chairs.

Time to head out for lunch with the family...

"Hi, Dad!"

"Hi, Ricky. How was church? What was the sermon about?"

"Not doing your righteous deeds in front of others just to impress them."

Do you act differently on Sundays?

Is your pastor a super secret stalker?

The Gift

Evan after he's had his coffee.

My son, my son.

We waited for you for years. We asked God when He would give you to us.

He said, "Wait."

We went to the doctor.

He said, "If you give me lots of money."

We did.

God said, "Not yet."

We were sad.

Your mom wanted to hold you. I wanted to throw a baseball with you.

The doctor said, "You can't."

We were sad.

Then came Christmas. That's when we found out you were on your way!

As I sit here rocking you to sleep in our squeaky armchair, I am overwhelmed by how wonderful you are.

I love you. And you remind me of how much my heavenly Father loves me.

And maybe someday he'll give you someone as special as he gave me.

God, never let me take this for granted.


The Trouble with Blogging - Guest Post By Daniel S. Carman

Today's guest post is by Daniel Carman. Daniel blogs at Return to Zero. He's a nuclear physicist (thank you, Spell Check), and therefore light years smarter than me.

I asked him to guest post for me, and here's what he cooked up in his thermocranial reactor...


That there's a tumbleweed, not Daniel. OR SO HE SAYS!

Each day I sit down at this cursed keyboard and it mocks me with its sing-song refrain, "What are you going to come up with today?" Try as I might to channel a sliver of Maya Angelou, what spills out is more like:

... The grand stone edifice fell across the alabaster mountains as the inky blackness dissipated into the aether ...

Gack! Truly mindless hackneyed pap that rots the brain. So, I try to conjure the rapturous mastery of the bard, William Shakespeare, and what oozes up from the mire is:

... The callow shaver approached his forebearer petitioning him for acumen and some perspicacity of his antiquities ...

Really? Complete and total dreck!

Now, just when I am at the end of myself, trying to come up with something pithy to say, with a profound moral and a bit of wit, striving to pull a crumb out of my flacid and barren mind, along comes a request to write more, a guest post for someone else. You see, that's the trouble with blogging, it insists upon itself. But, as Abraham Lincoln, our nation's first president, said on this very subject, "That grinch even took their last can of Who hash!". Now I'm not sure what that has to do with anything, but truer words were never uttered regarding the tumbleweeds skittering through my mental cupboards. The point is, I still think, somehow, I have pulled an ace out of my ... err ... "sleeve" with this one, I have. A blog with no point, very little humor, and no taste. Should fit in quite well here I believe.

How To Be the President of the United States - Guest Post for Jessica Buttram

In my ongoing efforts to prepare the next generation for jobs of awesomeness, today I'm guest posting for Jessica Buttram.

Jessica is a much better writer than me, but apparently isn't a good judge of character. She asked me to write something for her, and I promptly put it off until yesterday morning at 4:15 AM.

So, head on over to Jessica's site to see what I threw up together for her.

Office Leftovers

I started my new job yesterday.

I've been quite busy, figuring stuff out and meeting the folks I'll be helping. Everyone seems nice.

The thing that confuses me are the leftovers.

Not in the fridge; in my office.

The previous IT guy left me some presents:
  • His Anniversary card.
  • An apple.
  • Pam's phone number on a sticky note on the keyboard.
  • A 60 minute micro cassette for an answering machine we don't have.
  • Half a stick of deodorant.
  • A folder labeled 'Junk-Spy'.
    • That's a pretty incomplete and skimpy encyclopedia.
  • A can of WD-40.

What goodies have you been left with?

This post written in French by Nathan Fillian.

One Paci to Rule Them All

Three Pacies for the Fussy under the mobile,
Seven for the Gassy in their sleep sacks zipped,
Nine for First-Born Son doomed to dribble,
One for the Evan Baby with his diaper ripped,
In the Land of Sleeptime where Babies lie.
One Paci to rule them all, One Paci to quiet him,
One Paci to calm his bawl and in the darkness distract him
In the Land of Sleepytime where Babies lie.

The World Serious

  • I've been watching the World Series on and off with my son.
    • That means I holler friendly wisdom to the television while he poops himself.
    • Both are equally useful to the outcome of the game.
  • I don't watch much baseball during the regular season. I saw three games this year, two of which were in person. But when October comes around, I get excited.
    • Jana's willing to watch the games with me since I'm not that husband who disappears every weekend for sports.
  • Growing up, my dad used to call it the World Serious. I still slip and call it that from time to time.
    • I get weird looks.
    • Which I'm used to by now.
  • I have great memories of watching the World Series with my younger brother growing up. Bed times didn't apply during the World Series, and we took full advantage.
    • His favorite team was the Blue Jays, and his favorite player was Joe Carter.
    • You should have seen him when the Blue Jays won the World Series and Joe Carter hit a grand slam.
Are you watching the World Series?

Nathan Fillian wuz here.

Teaching Your Baby To Be Self-Sufficient

I was discussing our child care plans with a coworker the other day.

She asked what we intended to do with Evan when Jana has to go back to work in late November.

"Babies his age don't generally go anywhere, right?", I asked. "We'll just put him in his bouncer and lock the door when we leave. He should be fine."

"You're horrible! What about feeding him?"

"Dang. Hadn't thought of that."

"You could get him one of those beer hats and just put milk bottles in the holders instead of beer cans."

"Brilliant! Or my wife the nurse could hook up a milk IV with a bottle nipple at the end."

"What about changing diapers?"

"Astronauts wear Maximum Absorption Garments...really big diapers. He can too!"

"Phone's for you. Child Protective Services, I think."

What else should I do to teach Evan to be self-sufficient?

Potpourri Conglomerate Stew, Code 47 Section 12 Part 8 Subcategory 2 Point 1

  • I just quit my job.
    • What should I do with 300 business cards?
  • I'd like to give life advice to strangers. Seems like good high-browed elitist fun.
    • That's your cue to email me weird questions. Email me at arthur2sheds @ g mail. com
      • Which is code for 'help me write my blog; I'm outta ideas'.
  • Apparently when you make your picks in a football pool, it's not a one-and-done sort of thing. You have to make your picks each week.
    • Before the games start.
    • The crazy thing? I'm still not in last place!
      • Tyler Tarver probably hates me since I'm on his team. That's ok; I hate me too. Jerkface!
  • What's an odd talent you have that you're secretly really proud of?
    • I'd tell you mine, but it's my ability to keep secrets, so I can't tell you.
      • Drat.
  • How long are you allowed to be with a new organization before you're expected to start being productive?
    • Because Evan hasn't done a darn thing on his chore list yet.
      • Bum.
In addition to the odd talent question above, what size shoes do you wear?

My Resignation Letter - Guest Post In Real Life by Scott Moore

As you may have noticed due to the lack of daily posts, things have been a bit hectic lately.

In addition to having our son Evan, I'm in the middle of a job change. I officially accepted a new position last week, and was left the unsavory task of resigning my current position.

As I do with all things that scare me, I outsourced it.

I asked my buddy Scott Moore to write my resignation letter with only a couple hours notice.

As usual, Scott came through big-time. I've only tweaked it a bit for minor details I didn't tell Scott beforehand.


Dear {Boss' Name},

Please accept this letter as notification of my de-employment. Resignation, I meant resignation. Whatever the word is that means I'm leaving.

I imagine upon hearing this news that I am leaving you are feeling hurt, deceived, grieved, and so on. Honestly, I don't blame you because I am kind of a big deal. In time you will be fine without me. "Fine" in the sense of Ron Burgundy right after Jack Black punted Baxter off that bridge. Don't worry, you will eventually break out of that glass case of emotion. Just don't break your computers, because I won't be here to fix them.

I do appreciate all the opportunities I have been given while working here, mostly the opportunity to get paid for Googling things.

I'll be around for two more weeks, but keep in mind that I have recently purchased a Harley, a leather jacket, and a sidecar for Evan. We will be hitting the open road soon.

In conclusion, I have not asked for much in my 8 year tenure here, so I would like to make a final request. As I am walking out of the door for the last time, could you please coordinate a companywide slow clap? Fist pump required.

High fives and fist pounds,


What quitting stories do you have?

Elliott Smith - Guest Post by Stanton Martin

Stanton Martin is a funny guy. Probably one of the funniest guys with two last names that I know.

I begged and pleaded with him for a guest post.

So today we get a treat about a guy with two last names written by another guy with two last names.

I'm confused, too.

You're up, Mr. Stanton...

Poop jokes.

Those are what make me laugh. You can say I have the sense of humor of a seven year old (one seriously overly-exposed seven year old) but I will always laugh every single time someone says, "Yeah, we do do that here." Do-do. Ha!

When Ricky Anderson asked me to write a guest post for his blog, I immediately knew that this was my chance to impress his audience with my own refined sense of humor. Ricky gave me one parameter: my post must make me laugh at least once. Pressure! I rarely find what I write to be “laugh out loud” funny, but he was adamant that if it makes me laugh, then it would be sure to make others laugh. Ricky has obviously never hung out with me, because most of the things I laugh at are not funny to others.

I bounced around several ideas for a post, but none of them were cutting it (the cheese [ha!]) and I even began scripting a video, but I realized my videos never make me laugh. I should probably stop filming those... It wasn't until Friday of last week that I really landed on what I wanted to discuss for today's guest post.

You see, I have this endearing (my friends would use the word ‘annoying’) tendency to get in these moods where anytime someone says something that is also a line from a song, I sing it… This has also evolved into me repurposing lines from songs to take the place of everyday activities—like pooping.

I’ve been known to say things like:
“Excuse me, I’ve got to go evacuate the dance floor." or "I'll meet you guys there, I've just gotta get that boom boom pow real fast."

Real highbrow stuff, huh?

Well, this got me to thinking. What other song titles could be used as a reference for bowel movements? A quick spin through my iPod playlist revealed something. The great singer/songwriter Elliott Smith must have suffered from a serious form of IBS or something. I mean this man wrote a prolific amount of songs with titles that could refer to pooping. Don't take my word for it, check these out:

  • A Passing Feeling - Because we all know what it's like to squat only to find we don't have to go.
  • Easy Way Out - You've got to try a high fiber diet at least once in your life.
  • Bottle Up and Explode - Fast food and long road trips are good for no man. 
  • All Cleared Out - For those days when you feel so light you could float away.
  • New Disaster - Who hasn't recovered from an upset stomach only to fall right back into it grasp.
  • I Better Be Quiet Now - For that awkwardly small apartments dinner party scenario. 
  • Little One - But you ate so much!
  • Ballad of Big Nothing - Wait, where did it go!?
  • New Monkey - Poop!
  • 2:45 A.M. - Nothing worse than having to wake up in the middle of the winter night for that!

If that makes me seven, I'm cool with that.

Take a gander at your iPod and see what songs you can find that could be in reference to a BM and leave a comment about it below!

You're Not Good Enough

Today I'm guest posting over at Chad Jones' hideout.

Chad's the one who wrote this guest post for me a while back.

Head on over and find out why you're not good enough.

Gunner Bummer

Watched Star Wars last night with my wife and son.

We couldn't help but laugh at how not bummed this pilot looks at the fact that he lost his gunner.

I'm going to start trying to take life's bummers in stride.

Like this guy.


Fuzzy Brain Potpourri, Sleep Deprivation Mode Edition Episode 4 (A New Hope, Not the CGI Ones)

  • Red Rover, Red Rover, send pizza right over!
    • But not math. Please don't send math.
  • Sat next to a kid on the airplane this weekend. He was chatty, but well-behaved overall. No crying, thankfully.
    • He's actually 21, but the older I get, the younger the kids get.
      • He wanted career advice. He's in dental school. I told him to brush his teeth.
  • RIP, Steve Jobs.

This is how we spent lunch yesterday. Our team had the local park to ourselves.

I'm thinking of investing in products that don't become obsolete overnight like technology does. Like socks. Socks are the future!

I hear the Presidential race is getting started. Politicians running for office more than a year out from the vote is as ridiculous as Christmas music in July...except I like Christmas music in July.

This bullet point is completely superfluous. It contains no information, and no jokes. In fact, because the formatting gets a bit wonky on Blogger when you put a picture in a bulleted list, this isn't technically even a bullet point. But this text definitely helps me take up the vertical space I needed so I can post the question on its own line below. Lorem ipsum!

What's going on in your world? Tell me two weird things that happened to you this week - one true and one false. I'll see who I can catch fibbing and which of you I won't ever play poker with.

How To Be a Celebrity Chef

I think most kids grow up to work dead-end jobs simply because they didn't know how to get to their dream ones.

So this one's for the kids. Every kid has dreamed at one point in their lives of being a celebrity chef.

Creating delectable delights, starring in your own cable TV show, always being expected to cook Thanksgiving dinner. What's not to like?

Things You Can Do Now To Prepare For Your Future As A Celebrity Chef
  • Mix it up. Start getting creative with your ingredients now. When you help Mom prepare dinner tonight, don't just follow that boring recipe - mix it up! Recipe calls for light seasoning on the meat? Try butter! Cake calls for a touch of frosting? Try butter! Homemade salsa is good, but lacks a little something? Try butter!
  • Try butter. Seriously, butter makes everything better. Run out of creamer for that specialty coffee? Toss in a stick of butter!
  • Work on your presentation. You can make the best burger in the world, but if your presentation is sloppy, nobody will want it....unless you garnish the plate with sticks of butter!
  • Perfect your pizza. This is a necessity...if I'm coming over for dinner.
  • Only make awesome food. You're a celebrity chef. You don't have to make grits or fried okra. You can afford to say no to foods you don't like. So don't eat your greens, but do eat your desert before your meal.
What tips do you have for the kids?

The Kind of Dad I Want To Be

My dad came to every one of my little league baseball games.

My dad is the reason I'm a Christian. He didn't beat me over the head with his theology. He quietly demonstrated his faith, every day.

My dad was always there for me when I needed help or advice. Still is.

My dad has a great sense of humor.

My dad loves my mom in thought, word and deed. Always has, always will.

My dad is patient.

My dad is generous.

My dad is kind.

I want to be this kind of Dad for my son, Evan. So many men grow up without strong and supportive dads. This generation has been called "The fatherless generation".

Not for Evan.

Click here to support the efforts of The Mentoring Project, a wonderful organization doing something to stop the fatherless generation.

What did your dad do to make an impact on your life?

If you're part of the fatherless generation, what was missing from your childhood that a mentor or father figure could have provided?


What's Your History?

Where are you from?

What's your background?

I was born in Arizona, but raised and still live in New Mexico.

I know you're not from South Dakota. No one from South Dakota has ever visited my blog, this I know, the Google Analytics tells me so.

So tell me a bit about yourself. I promise I won't make fun. Unless you're from South Dakota.

Although I am sometimes afraid to make fun of people from South Dakota. They may attack me in the comments in droves. Or, since there's not too many of them, maybe a single drove. As in "Marge and I drove to Iowa to use one 'a these 'pooters to tell you what we really think!"

This message approved by Nathan Fillian.

Book 'em, Dan-o!

I'm currently listening to Dave Ramsey's new book, Entreleadership (affiliate link). I'd like to start my own business someday, so I've been waiting for this one for a year. Enjoying it so far. I'm going to go through the printed version with a highlighter.

My dad runs his own business and works from home. That was great for us kids growing up. Now that I have a son of my own, I've really started thinking about what I could do that would let me stay home while supporting my family.

I've got nothing, so feel free to give me some of your best ideas. I'd be happy to steal them.

I'm also reading Knox McCoy's Jesus and the Bachelorette and Tyler Tarver's Words and Sentences, just for fun(ny).

What are you reading right now? What turned you on to it? What's your favorite book of all time? Mine's Ender's Game (affiliate link).

This post approved and endorsed by Nathan Fillian.

Keepin' It Moving In the Redbox Line - Guest Post for Russ Ray

I'm not dead yet.

I don't want to go on the cart.

I feel happy, I feel happy.


Oh, sorry. Wrong movie.

Today I'm guest posting over at Russ Ray's site.

You know that lady in front of you in line at the local Redbox - the one who's been there 20 minutes and is making your left eye twitch?

I tell you how to handle her.

Head on over to Russ' site (that's a lot of S's, Russ) to find out how.

Discussion question: Which one of Russ' Spam of the Month Club posts is your favorite?

Breastfeeding For Hubbies

My wife: I wish you could breastfeed him! I feel like a robot. A robot who hurts really badly.

Me: Since 'the two shall become one flesh', I kinda am breastfeeding him.

My wife: Ha! I'd like to see you try.

Me: I'd let him try, but he wouldn't get anything.

My wife: Well, I still don't see why you can't do any of this. It'd only be fair.

Me: God loves me more!

Ever wish you could 'help out' a bit more at home?

The Oddest Things I've Ever Been Asked At Work

  • Do you have a drill?
    • Yes, I keep it right here next to the servers. I often need to use a drill on the servers.
  • I went to open the refrigerator door, and it just fell off. Can you help me put it back on?
    • Wow. Remind me not to tick you off, Mrs. Hulk. Let me get my drill.
  • Can you rub my shoulders?
    • I can, but I won't.
      • Weirdo.
  • Want to see Winky?
    • I don't care if you did name your pet turtle a weird name; I'm not a pet person and this is an office. Get that thing out of here.
      • And that sounded really creepy.
  • Can I go to the bathroom, Sir?
    • Yes, Junior Staffer who just started today - the Network King has granted your request.
What odd things have you encountered at work?

How To Be a Blogger

I think most kids grow up to work dead-end jobs simply because they didn't know how to get to their dream ones.

So this one's for the kids. Every kid has dreamed at one point in their lives of being a blogger.

Working for free, building community with strangers, meeting fictitious deadlines. What's not to like?

Things You Can Do Now To Prepare For Your Future As A Blogger
  • Take notes. You'll need ideas for your last-minute post (this one!). It helps if you have a list of ideas handy.
  • Be ridiculous. The more outlandish you can make any situation you find yourself in, the better your blog posts will be later.
  • Learn web design. Then your blog won't look generic and boring. Like mine.
  • Read Bryan Allain's new book, 31 Days to Finding Your Blogging Mojo. It's full of funny and very useful advice for growing your blog. My favorite are the hidden ninja parts. Bryan is the blogging world's Gandalf. Trust him.
What tips do you have for the kids?

Interview With Knox McCoy

Today, I get the day off.

Knox McCoy interviewed me for his Residents of Awesometown series, and you can read the majesticallness of my red-lettered responses right here.

If you haven't read any of Knox's stuff, check out his site while you're over there. He's naturally funny and an incredibly talented wordsmith. Lots of bloggers are amusing, but Knox has some serious writing chops to boot.

Chops to Boot would make a great name for an indie rock band.

Get on that, Hipsters...


Life Advice for Joseph Craven

Last week, Joseph Craven gave my two-week-old son Evan some great life advice. In the comments of that post, Mysie suggested Evan should return the favor due to his 'fresh perspective' on life.

Since he has a lot of time and/or poo on his hands, Evan was more than happy to comply.

Here's a few tips Evan has for Joseph:
  • Sleep all the time. People will think it's peaceful and cute. They will want to shelter you, protect you and take your picture to put on Facebook.
  • Relieve yourself. On yourself. Often. When it smells bad enough, someone else will take care of it for you. After they've cleaned you up, they'll probably feed you and take your picture to put on Facebook.
  • When you're hungry, just squawk a bit. People with food are on standby 24/7, waiting on your demands. After feeding you, they'll probably rock you and take your picture to put on Facebook.
  • Look cute. This shouldn't be hard to do, what with the manly beard you wear on that baby face, Joseph. In fact, I've heard from more than a few people that they want to take your picture to put on Facebook.
I hope these life tips help you become even more awesome, Joseph. And in the interest of full disclosure, I will come clean and admit that I typed this, not Evan. He just narrated. He has a hard time typing, what with those mittens and all.

What other life advice did Evan give Joseph, but I rudely forgot to include?

Oh, Sleep

Hope you enjoy my wife's first guest post...

O - Once I knew you

H - How long till we meet again?

S - Sleep, sleep, sleeeeep

L - Lend me your soft down pillow

E - Evan, where did you put the sleep?

E - Evan, why do you want Daddy to get up? These are not the boobs you are looking for!

P - pleeeeease go back to sleeeeep...


Trust Me, I’m A Doctor

Today's guest post is by Jessica Buttram. She's a funny mom of two and a wife of one. She blogs at Meet the Buttrams. She writes funny and/or poignant pieces on parenting. Here's one of my favorites, which you read right after this.
Take it away, Jessica...

-- I have a seven-year-old boy. Which means I have the equivalent of a Ph.D in parenting. So it was no surprise, really, when Ricky (the equivalent of a high school student on his first college visit) asked me to guest post on his blog. So listen up, Ricky! Everything I am about to write is GOSPEL. Heed the Ph.D that I just made up.
Here’s what I know (pencils ready?) about parenting: it is not for the fainthearted. PENCILS DOWN!
Here’s the dealio, Coolio.

Your brand-new, totally dependent, soft and squishy, lavender-scented baby who popped out all like, Whaaaaat?, immediately and instinctively knowing he belonged to you and no one else…will grow up. Tomorrow, even, he’ll start doing something new that will BLOW YOUR MIND. Like, smiling. Smiling’s my favorite. And then, you’ll blink approximately seventeen times, and your brand-new baby will be a squealing, giggling, running, falling, somewhat independent toddler. It’s happening to me AS WE SPEAK. My fifteen-month-old, who took only about 15 minutes to get that old (it seems), can feed herself. She can climb things. She plays Hide-and-Seek (mostly just Seek). When she’s done eating, she doesn’t wait for me to lift her out of her high chair. She stands up and tries to swan-dive onto the hardwood floor. Consequently, I not only have a Ph.D, I am also trained in the art of trapeze acrobatics. (Diversity, people.)

And then, when you turn your back to do the dirty dishes or mountain of laundry you’ve left unattended for the last three or so years, your baby will be heading to Kindergarten. And then? Well, then Time really begins to fly.
This person, this tiny, pocket-sized person who grows steadily every single second, has, in his tiny, pocket-sized fist, the complete ability to bash your heart in, to sucker-punch you in the aorta, to squeeze the life unmercifully from your heartstrings.
Violent, right?
And that’s all I really KNOW about parenting (sorry, Ricky Tikki Tavi, I hope you weren’t expecting a How-To For Dummies).
I KNOW that the love you have for your child is a violent love. It invades you. It conquers you. It takes no prisoners. It moves in and it stays for life. BUT (and here’s the good news for today) that love? That Rambo love? It’s a pretty good tyrant. That is, when you aren’t totally crushed by its sheer weight. And take it from this circus scholar, there will be days when you are literally unable to function until you press your son’s body against your chest, feel his puffy cheek bury into curve of your neck, the smell of his baby shampoo like a shot of heroin…or coffee, whatev.
Because it’s that love that forces you to be better, to be honest and selfless and more of the Self God intended you to be. And maybe, sometimes, even a little crazy.
AND…here’s the kicker!…it allows us, as parents, a rare and exclusive glimpse into the infinite capacity of God’s own love for us.
And that? Well, it doesn’t really get any better than that.

Life Advice for Evan - Guest Post by Joseph Craven

Joseph Craven is a relatively new acquaintance of mine. We met in a bar in Philly on the Internet, which is how I meet all my friends.

Joseph is qualified to post on my blog for a number of reasons. The first is that I have a brother named Joe. Both appear to be taller than me and can probably make me cry.

But the real reason is that as with every other blogger I know, I quickly recognized Joseph is funnier than me. When that happens, I beg for a guest post. Joe doesn't like begging, so I demanded it of him.

J blogs at The Greatest Blog of All Time. He's also on Twitter. Check him out (I can say that - he's not married).

In the comments, please leave some additional life advice for my shiny new son, Evan. Also, leave a random new nickname for Joseph Craven. It's all right, it's not like he knows where you live.

Baby Evan Uses a Computer

Yesterday we took Evan to the doctor for a weight checkup.

The nurse was nice and chatted with us for a few minutes about her first child. Then she got down to business...

"Take off his clothes and his diaper and place him on the scale, please."

"His diaper too?"


"Are you sure?"

"We need an accurate weight."

I removed the diaper and winced.


With a sigh of relief, I placed Evan on the scale on the nurse's desk next to her computer monitor and keyboard. The nurse took the measurement, and then gasped as Evan exploded on the desk, and the monitor, and the keyboard...and then politely used his hose to put the fire out.

That's what IT folks do, right - put out fires?

I'm proud of you, Son.

Have your kids ever shocked strangers?

If My Son Were An Operating System

If my son were an operating system, he'd be Linux. Linux isn't new, and babies aren't new...but this baby? It's the latest distro. Though it's built on the same kernel as it's predecessor, you should upgrade to this distro. It's entirely different and anyone who doesn't like it is old-school. Maybe you should RTFM.

If my son were an operating system, he'd be OS X. He doesn't have many features. There's iPoo, iCry, iEat and iSleep. But what he lacks in features he makes up for in simplicity. He's easy to use and has a very attractive form factor.

If my son were an operating system, he'd be Windows. The accessories you can use with this version are endless! The downside is that nothing's free and there's a million things to update. The stroller? Outdated! Buy a new one! That car seat is more than two years old? Security vulnerability - upgrade it! Your car won't hold all these accoutrements? You need a bigger drive!

What did iMiss?

Baby Potpourri, Baby

  • My son is very well-tempered. He doesn't cry unless he needs changed or fed. Or when he suddenly thinks wild boars are about to eat him.
  • Is it too soon to start using my son as an excuse to watch more baseball and football? You know, for bonding purposes?
  • I read my son Bible stories. I bought a Baby Bible from the Kindle store for this. My son is 8 days old. I read; he poops. Buying a Baby Bible to read him is equivalent to reading him a thesaurus instead of Roots.
  • He'd better not commit any crimes. I have a copy of his footprints.
  • He doesn't have a Social Security number yet. I wonder if 12 is taken?
  • Sometimes he nurses too fast and chokes. I have to remind him to chew first and not to cry with his mouth full.
Why is my son so awesome? Make up the most ridiculous idea you can in the comments.

When Things Get Rocky

From our labor day to yours, Merry Christmas!

Time to get up, time to get moving. There are no naps in this dojo!

What are you doing today?

Things Your Baby Will Bring to the Table - Guest Post by Rob Shepherd

Rob Shepherd is one of my internet twins. Sometimes I read his posts aloud...before he's posted them.

He's a blogger, pastor, husband and father of twins, which is why I'm honored he would write a guest post for me while Jana and I are trying to figure out how to be parents for the first time (P.S. - if you have some extra sleep, please feel free to email it to me).

I wrote a guest post for him a while back. If you haven't read it yet and would like to laugh at me in my absence, click these four words after you read Rob's list of things your baby will bring to the table.

You're up, Rob...

Being a dad of five month old twins, I think that I can write with great authority about what your baby is going to bring to the table. Now when I write 'table', I mean things they are going to be good at when they are first born.
  • Pooping. Babies are great at this. The first couple of poos look like they ate straight oil in the womb. It’s gross.  One benefit of all this pooping is that you can blame all of your funky smells on them and no one will question it.
  • Crying. I don’t know if your kid will be as gifted as mine, but my kids were gifted criers when they were first born. They would cry in the middle of the night on a consistent basis.  They also would wait to cry until we sat down to eat, watch a TV show, or try to sleep ourselves. Good luck with that.
  • Sleep. They sleep a lot. For our first week of parenting my wife and I looked at each other and said, “parenting is easy.” Those jokers sleep a lot. It’s like you have a little coma victim who wakes up to eat only to fall back to sleep when they are done. We thought parenting was easy, but then week two happened and their crying outweighed their sleeping.
  • Sneezing. Babies apparently don’t have nose hairs so they sneeze pretty often. Don’t worry they aren’t getting sick. They just sneeze a lot.
  • Rolling their eyes up into their head. My daughter did this more than my son but it freaked us out every time. It’s like they don’t have full control of their eyes and those things roll all around the back of their head.
  • Getting out of swaddles. Now the first week they slept so much they did not bust out of their swaddles. Come week two my kids became escape artists and would get out of the most tightly swaddled swaddle.
The truth is that if your kid is like my kids, they won’t bring a lot to the table for the first few weeks. They cost you money, sleep, and will probably cause you to tell your wife “what were we thinking.” Even though they don’t bring a lot to the table you will feel a love for them that you cannot describe. They haven’t done anything to deserve your love but you will love them with all your heart. It reminds me of how God must feel about us. I don’t bring a lot to the table. God doesn’t love me because of anything that I do. He loves me because He’s my father.

What else do babies bring to the table?