Monday, September 7, 2009

Lazy Labor Day

Starting off with a few things I have already noted at Facebook today, so if you’ve already read this business, feel free to skim or skip as much or more than you normally do. Or read it word for word. Whatever. Put as much Labor into it as you like. ;)


Took Harrison to the park today. He was King of the Mountain with his bag of “Ninjan Mutant Turtles,” and made me very proud of his generosity as he offered to let the other kids play with them too. I overheard him and a new friend talking and the following exchange was made:

Harrison: "You wanna play Ninjan Turtles with me?"

New Friend: "Sure. If it's got weapons and bad guys, I like it."

You have to love when kids are honest like that. :)


I’m so sick and tired of hearing about this Obama talking to the school children crap. After reading the speech, I’m even more pissed off that so much energy and anger has been wasted on it.

I'm far less worried about an elected official telling my kids that they need to work hard to accomplish their goals than I am about the marketing of movies to my son that are much too mature for him. Giving a kid a toy for Transformers/GI Joe/Spiderman/etc. and then filling the accompanying movie with vulgar language, sexual innuendo (or the actual act) and extreme violence seems much worse a sin to me. Obama's going to speak to the kids once. Commercials run EVERY DAY. Even if you don't watch that much TV, you see the print ads everywhere. We don't even eat at Burger King very much, but we drive by one that has very prominent door ads every day on the way to school; every day, Harrison asks about getting whatever toy they are peddling. Every day.

Even if you could block out the TV ads, the print ads and take a different route to school/work, you still have other families to contend with. Try as I might to ban the Power Rangers in our house (more because I just didn't want to have to watch it and have my brain cells leak out every time--we did the same thing with Jay Jay the Jet Plane, too), his friends at school still played Power Rangers, and so he still came home talking about it and begging for PR toys and clothes.

I guess maybe if Obama were marketing his speech with t-shirts and toys, I might be concerned, but I don't think there's that level of stupid happening just yet. :)


On to the new news!

We had a neighborhood get-together tonight, which I thought was really cool. I remember having a lot of cookouts with my neighbors when I was growing up. We knew the families who lived around us. We played with their kids, we drank water in their kitchens when we got too hot from being outside all day playing (none of this sitting down, playing video game crap for us!), and if we messed up, they let our parents know on the double so that when we got home the switch was waiting for us. We watched out for each other.

Since becoming an adult (i.e., married and not living at home), I’ve not known the names of the vast majority of my neighbors. I visited one lady when we lived in Marshall a time or two, but really, we only ever talked to our neighbors when we were outside working in the yard (as rarely as humanly possible!) or if we were out on the occasional ‘round the block walk.’ We knew even less people when we lived in Kilgore, and we lived there for eight years!

We’ve lived in Longview for coming up on three years now and we know some of our neighbors by sight. We have gotten kind of familiar with the family across the street since they have kids who are the same age as our kids, but we see them probably once a month or less. We’ve waved at most of the people we met tonight, but have never stopped to have an honest-to-God conversation with them.

Tonight, though, we all went a few doors over and gathered in the backyard of one of the neighbors and had a good ‘getting to know you’ session. There were, of course, those who already knew each other, but there were plenty of us who didn’t know many people at all. It was cool because it was low-key—there were no big activities involved aside from eating. We sat and chatted about kids, school, gardening and danged squirrels. At one point, a gun was brought out to shoot a marauding squirrel in the pecan tree, but apparently the rodent saw the trouble headed his way and thus the kids avoided having a Bambi/dead animal moment. :)

Weird Rifleman moment aside (and even that was kind of funny), it was a really good afternoon. We talked about getting together for the upcoming National Night Out, which I have wanted to participate in for several years now, so I’m excited about that. Apparently, Texans are the only ones who complained about the beginning of August being too hot, so the national organization has moved our date to October 6. Sounds like it’s going to be cool!

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