Saturday, December 15, 2007

And caroled away

Twas two weeks before Christmas, when all through the house

The Gills were all lounging, yes, even the mouse;

(Wife’s note: it’s a Chinchilla, not a damned mouse!)

The tree it was standing, but no other sign

Was showing their holiday spirit so fine;

The Wifey was resting, her second day back

From hospital stays and a nurse we called Jack;

(Wife’s note: his name was Roy, NOT Jack!)

And Evie was playing, annoying the dogs,

While they sat on Wifey like smelly old logs,

My mother was upstairs and quilting away,

With vive that was turning her son’s hair quite gray,

And I at my desktop, e-shopping of course,

Was alarmed at mad barking: volume and force!

I flew down the stairs knowing not what we faced,

Dread pirates or pumas? The dogs and I raced;

What did I hear as I made my fair landing?

Singing not raiding had dog hackles standing,

So Evie and I pushed the crazy dogs back,

Opened the door, then were taken aback,

Was it a seller of wares from distant Zupanja?

Our friends gathered ‘round, like holiday ninja,

(Wife’s note: you would NOT believe the effort he expended on that rhyme)

They had secretly planned and sneakily run

This cheerful yule mission to bring us some fun,

My family and I, stood both shocked and amazed

This statement of love left hearts warmed and eyes glazed,

Our friends stood there singing and braving the cold,

Gifting us kindly with presents like gold;

Their friendship’s the finest the world has to grant,

Expressed through their presence and Christmassy chant;

The smiles all remembered the laughs always held,

So long after sounds of their singing dispelled,

With love and affection we think of that day,

Our friends came together and caroled away;

Our Christmas came early our friends got it right,

Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Home Again Home Again Jiggety Jig

My wife is back home with a punk rock wig! she's not actually sporting a wig, and in truth, compared to the mod hair-do she wore when a teen (go ahead and raise your hand if you remember mods, don't worry, I'm not looking) her hair looks pretty tame.

She's home, she's well, and all is more or less well in our micro-state of Denmark. was that for a barrage of cliches, images and references?


Saturday, December 8, 2007

Wifey out on Parole!

My wife is home this weekend on a pair of "day passes" from RIOSA. It is wonderful to have her back for a day. We are doing usual Christmas stuff: bought and decorated a tree, playing Christmas music, and baking cookies.


Thursday, December 6, 2007

Michelle is getting a weekend pass from PT/boot camp

This will most likely be the last step before she comes home for good.



Sunday, December 2, 2007


Recovery & Recuperation, as much as Rest & Relaxation.

Michelle is receiving OT and PT at a local rehab center, and getting stronger.


Saturday, November 24, 2007

An update

Michelle is recovering well.
She is surprising everyone with how quickly she bounced back within the first 24 hours.
With hope, her speedy and full recovery will continue at this rate.


Friday, November 23, 2007

The Wifey incident

Just in case I've failed to inform any of our friends, Michelle suffered a sub-cranial hemorrhage yesterday at around noon. She was rushed to the Methodist hospital where the neurosurgeons operated, relieving the pressure on her brain.

She is presently recovering in the Neuro-ICU, and is making an astounding recovery.

More details to follow.


Thursday, November 1, 2007

New Joss Whedon project coming to Fox

This news is courtesy of Brenda:;_ylt=AlF65Td.SGt3pAVvHHadlCBxFb8C

It sounds intriguing.
While Eliza Dushku is far from my favorite from Whedon's cadre of actors and actresses, I'll definitely be watching, and spread the word.

After's Joss.

On a related note I'd like to remind any Joss fans out there to check out the Buffy season 8 comic series on Dark Horse. It's written by Joss and as such, is an indisputably awesome read for any fan of Joss's work and/or style.
Make sure you nab the outstanding Jo Chen covers!


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween, and don't forget your copy of the Watchtower

So, Halloween...I love it, my wife loves it, and our daughter love it best of all.

We had a very nice time. Wifey hung out at the house, distributing candy and good cheer. The daughter and I had a grand time trick-or-treating with some friends and neighbors. Corbin (our Frenchie) had a great if exhausting time cruising around the neighborhood with us dressed as a pumpkin, soaking up all the attention provided by kids and adults enchanted by the darling little guy.

We chatted with fellow treat-or-treaters, caught up with neighbors, saw was like a mobile cocktail party. The daughter netted a LOT of candy.

We also found 3 pamphlets of religious propaganda.

Let me be clear on this.
I don't have a problem with faith - faith is a good thing.
I don't have a problem with organized religion, in and of itself, although I'll readily admit that my own tastes run to less rather than more organization.
I don't have a problem with people espousing their religious theories or ideals within a forum among adult peers.

I DO have a problem with folks foisting there spiritual quirks and worldviews onto children by piggybacking onto a holiday unaffiliated with their faith.

If you don't like Halloween for whatever reason, be it religious, moral, or dental, that's fine.
Turn your exterior lights off, decline to decorate, whatever. Please do not take the opportunity to whore out your chosen flavor of righteous eloquence.

If parents want their children to share your views, they'll bring them to your church, temple, mosque, hall, or hallowed grove of ancient oaks.

Let me put it another way. This type of sharing is not welcome. Guess what, folks? Most people, churchgoers and non-churchgoers alike are aware of the options out there. We don't need pocket bibles or "come to our Church, we have cake!" leaflets slipped into our children's treat bags to realize this.

Your faith is right for you.
It is arrogant and presumptuous to assume that your faith is right for complete stranger.

Yours in felicity if not faith,

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Hazy Shade of OMG I'm tired...

It's 10pm, we're just getting the kidlet to bed, after finishing (more or less) the cleaning of the house, after opening the birthday girl's presents, after having seen off seen off the last of the birthday party guests, after throwing a tolerably successful 6th birthday party for our daughter.

I am left with a few lasting impressions:

First off, my feet and throat are sore.

Second, we have a LOT of beer leftover. (Jay, time for a poker night)

Third and most importantly, we have made a lot of really great friends.

I just wrote some additional material that was chock full of my usual smartassery, but I deleted it. It was undercutting the main point of this post (other than our level of fatigue).

And that point is a simple one: we are fortunate to have met such good folk and are indeed rich in friendship.


Friday, October 19, 2007

They always say how doctors are the worst patients...

But I suspect that I could give some of the doctors of my acquaintance a run for their money.

It's the night before my daughter's birthday, and I have no voice.

I started losing it (my voice, stay on topic here) yesterday evening after yelling at my swim students for a few hours. No, I wasn't being unkind to them, I simply have to yell to be heard clearly over the din of swimmers and assorted distractions. But by mid-day today it was obvious the cold I thought I'd dodged had infiltrated my body and set-up a phlegm chop-shop in my chest. So as we were prepping the house today (then later carting around princesses) I was feeling worse and worse, until my throat was killing me from the post-nasal drip and my chest felt like it had a 26lb Frenchie on it, even when it didn't.

Luckily my darling wife ran to the store (braving crazy SA drivers in Fri evening traffic) to bring me some medicinal goodness.

Hurray for spouses who run out and get you what you need rather than poking you with a sharp stick!

Any way, I DESPISE being sick, and anything settling in my chest is especially hard on me since I'm already a trifle paranoid about obstructions in my airway (possibly a side-effect of being asthmatic).


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Speaking of pacifists and such...

Would anyone care to chime in on how I got onto this stupid distribution list for

Was it all that browsing for ecologically sensitive erotica?
Don't judge, everyone needs a vice.

No, really.
*Insert Eddie Izzard alternating b/t shaking his head in denial and nodding in affirmation.
**Note to self: work on those animated Eddie GIFs.
***Better note to self: ask more talented friends to work on them.

Back to the amusement that is noticed the domains/servers "" and "" are available. Just going to file that away for possible future fun.

This week's alert headline: Al Gore, Polar Bears, and You.

I'm going to pause to let that one sink in.

OK, done? Good.

Now, Al Gore is actually proving himself to be a moderately interesting human being, despite his unfortunate taste in spouses and inability to procure a viable running mate. His film was interesting. Maybe Gore has become the nemesis to fluorocarbons that Jimmy Carter became to homelessness. Then again, maybe not.

That said, I am left wondering, my own inestimable sensitivity aside, what on earth did I do to deserve being added to this list?
Maybe I'm just one of the lucky ones.
We few, we happy few, we band...oh, sorry, got carried away. I don't imagine the Care2 network cares too terribly much for our troops. It's so much easier to support wildlife than it is the hard-working soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines all around the world.

I was going to unsubscribe but I've decided instead I'm going to catalog all of these eye-catching titles and try to make some sense of the truths behind the spin. I know, I know, it'll be like wading through grimy gopher guts that are Media Research Center publications. But hey, even a kernel of objective truth will feel like a pearl of righteous victory!

Have you ever noticed how remarkably similar the rantings of the extreme right and extreme left sound?

I wonder if there's a lesson in that...

Bad blogger, no Starbucks!

I haven't updated for a while.
But in my defense, I'm a slacker.
(You know, that justification sounded much stronger in my head)

So our house guests (my mother and nephew) have left. We're now gearing up for our daughter's birthday party, with Halloween following swiftly behind. What are we going to do for excitement once October has finished its run?


I suppose we'll do what the stores around here do (and have been doing for almost 3 weeks), prepare for Christmas.

I've decided this coming year, in addition to starting Krav Maga with my girls, I need to get to work on the two hobbies I've always wanted to cultivate: Violin and Kyudo.

I figure between those two, I'll be able to frighten and disturb every dog and pacifist in the neighborhood.

Just need to look up the city ordinances...

Friday, October 12, 2007

Excited and nervous

So it's feast or famine out here in Texas, looking for a job.

I finished up a phone interview with USAA, then received a call for a job with a defense company.
Two interviews in as many days. No guarantees of course, but I may be leaving the stay-at-home dad club.

Excited and nervous.

On a completely unrelated note, Life continues to amaze me as some of the smartest TV programming in years.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Are you a nice snake or a mean snake?

My daughter often asks me if a particular animal is a mean or nice animal, often while we are visiting the zoo. My nigh invariable answer is the animal in question is not mean, but in fact is dangerous.

This is not a philosophical distinction or a matter of semantics.

Cruelty and meanness are human characteristics.

Our dubious honor within the animal kingdom is we are stewards of cruelty, visited on our own kind, as well as our environment.


Thursday, October 4, 2007

And in this exhibit we see the rare and peculiar stay-at-home dad!

So I attended the Room Parent Orientation this morning at my daughter's elementary school. I had to keep checking to make sure I didn't have an enormous coffee stain on my shirt, or if I'd left the fly down on my jeans.

But of course, it wasn't my shirt (perfectly conservative thank you very much) or my jeans gathering all the curious and speculative was my genes. What exactly was a ol' XYer doing in a cafeteria full of room-moms?

Can you in the back hear me?

I was doing the same thing they were, getting involved with our children's infinitely important school years.

Shocking, I know.

And actually, I'm a rank amateur at the gig. The stay-at-home dad of one of my daughter's friend has three kids, and still does a better job of keeping his house in order.

I've learned SO MUCH from him, and from my other friends here. All these little tricks of the trade.

I have to admit, I'm getting better, a little better, all the time.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Nothing reinforces the conclusion that one is out of shape...

Like spending two hours in a pool with a bunch of high-school and college age swim instructors.

Yep, I've started as a part-time swim instructor over at the Natatorium. It was a lot of fun to work with the kids as well as the amazing staff from Swim America. Even if it means wearing the bike-shorts that male swimmers wear there. Oh well, at least they're not speedos; that wouldn't be fun for any of the involved parties.

A reminder: Pushing Daisies starts tonight

ABC, 7/8pm

If you loved Dead Like me and Wonderfalls, watch Pushing Daisies because you'll most likely love this as well.

If you never saw Dead Like Me or Wonderfalls, please extract yourself from your cave of residence and watch Pushing Daisies because you'll most likely love it.

If you didn't like Dead Like Me or Wonderfalls, well...then you should watch Pushing Daisies, if only because you deserve a chance at redemption. There really is more to TV than the OC.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

My tadpole's big day

Today Evie started school-age swim practice. I've watched her grow, in the space of one year, from a preschooler who wouldn't put her head under water (some irrational fear of drowning, I suspect)
to a kick-ass kindergartener who can swim all 4 strokes and hold her breath longer than some adults of my acquaintance. She's an agile little mermaid and a damned fine swimmer, probably a stronger swimmer than I was at her age. Many thanks go out to the fine staff at the Natatorium and the Swim America program.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Pushing Daisies and Dead Like Me version 2.0

Pushing Daisies starts this Wednesday on ABC. It's the latest creation of Bryan Fuller, genius who brought us Dead Like Me and Wonderfalls. It's starring Lee Pace (the brother from Wonderfalls), Chi McBride (from Boston Public and House), as well as some cutie named Anna Friel. It looks good. Watch it.

I noticed on IMDB that Dead Like Me is being resuscitated...without Mandy Patinkin and Bryan Fuller. I'm excited but cautious.

The error of over-association

So I'm watching Ed Zwick's video journal for The Last Samurai, and thinking about how people sometimes (spelled o-f-t-e-n) over-associate products, be they movies, music, or actual hard merchandise, with one or more of the principle elements. When the trailers for The Last Samurai were first released I remember a great public sigh of "oh, another Tom Cruise vehicle". It really bothered me at the time, just as it bothered me when people refer to Franco Zeffirelli's Hamlet as "Mel Gibson's Hamlet".

Now this isn't meant to be a treatise defending the work of film-makers verses that of actors, so bear with me.

People get hung up on the personal characteristics of celebrities and other public figures and then transfer feelings about those characteristics to an associated product.

Tom Cruise may be a bit of a weirdo with the Scientology thing, but he's an accomplished actor and it's an error in judgment to assume that his personal oddness is going to somehow taint the movie.

Mel Gibson, again, the high-profile Catholic that folks either love to hate or hate to love, but guess what folks? He's been an arch-conservative all his career (likely all his life). It's only recently that he's started to let it bleed over into his public life. None of that really has anything to do with his ability to act.

-Prince: The man is freaky, there's no real doubt; he's also a phenomenally talented musician.

-Emeril Lugassi: His flamboyant manner may grate on me but I'm not going to refuse to try one of his recipes.

-Lindsay Lohan: err...OK, I got nothing here.

If you get caught up in the personal oddities of these people (and others) you run the risk of missing out on some of those rare jewels of art and experience. You need to be willing to move past their foibles and appreciate their work.

On a closing note, The Last Samurai was not Tom Cruise's film, although I think he did a fine job playing his part. It was Edward Zwick's film. The Last Temptation of Christ, now that was Gibson's baby. If you liked it he deserves credit; if you didn't, feel free to send him a care package of monkey poop.

Friday, September 28, 2007

I obviously need more guy friends...

So I just noticed on Quicktime that the 4th installment of the Saw horror flick franchise is forthcoming.

I've seen exactly none of them.

And I like horror films.

My wife is not so much against horror films as she is against anything that might disturb her sleep. As such, we rarely see horror films at night, the only time one is allowed to watch horror films after reaching the age of sixteen.

This brings me to my point, most of my friends here are women. They are all wonderful women, met mostly through my daughter (ie, mothers of the daughter's friends). That said, I can't exactly go catch a horror flick with any of them. Chiefly there's the concern of their own tastes which let's be honest, rarely run to the Rob Zombie/James Wan/Chan-Wook Park school of film-making. Secondly, there's the issue of husbands, whom look only rarely with delight upon their wives going out for a movie with the odd creature that is your author.

Yep, I obviously need more guy friends.

New reasons to not be at the gym!

Nothing like the birth a a few promising TV series to keep one's ass planted on the couch late in the evening rather than hitting the gym.

But don't worry, there's hope: these shows are likely too good to last.

That caveat aside, let's dive in, shall we?

Bionic Woman: Despite my trepidation, I find myself liking this show. The production values are high (a rarity in sci-fi programming) and the acting doesn't suck. I'm not going to say much more, because I won't be sold until the story pans out a little more fully.

Life: Regardless of the knee-jerk comparison to House, MD (right, because another Brit playing an odd but smart American automatically makes it a similar show) I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that Life has more in common with other conspiracy-driven shows (Lost, X-Files) than, House, Monk, or any other quirky character-driven drama. Damian Lewis proves again that he is a talented and nuanced actor, no surprise to those of us familiar with his work...even the tragically flawed "Dreamcatcher".

Haunted: Not the most original premise, but the premiere was engaging enough to elicit my continued viewing. Unlike Sci-Fi channel's "Dresden Files", this actually seems to be written for a grown-up audience. I like Matthew Fox in Lost and he seems well suited for the lead in Haunted.

Reaper: Love it! A 21 year old slacker working at Home Depot discovers his parents sold his soul to the Devil and he therefore has to work for said entity tracking down escaped souls. Priceless. As an added bonus, the best friend character, "Sock", the the spitting image of our friend Ben from San Diego. And Ray Wise as the devil, how cool is that?

Heroes: Yes, I realize I'm a bit Johnny Come Lately here, but we just watched the first two episodes of Heroes season 1 and we were very impressed. Damned fine TV.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

"Ask yourself, do you feel safer? Well do you, punk?"

While discussing concealed carry, a friend asked me, "So do you feel safer?"

This got me thinking about safety again.

For those of us with families, safety is a topic that merits a fair amount of consideration. Not that you single folks are off the hook, but I found becoming a parent magnified my interest in issues of safety and security.

Personally, I try to make a distinction between actual safety, and the perception of safety. Safety's dark mirror is danger, actual danger and the perception thereof. People sometimes make much ado about safe neighborhoods, safe schools, even safe cars (hats off to Volvo for one of the most successful and pervasive automotive marketing campaigns to date). My point here is these concepts speak more to perception of safety, rather than actual safety. Crime happens wherever you have people, from big cities to small towns, from rich suberbs to downtown tenements. I'm not denying that population density and socioeconomic level effect crime rates; I'm simply pointing out that criminals are people, people are mobile, and are therefore going to commit crime wherever the plum opportunity exists. Safe schools? Don't make me laugh. The idea of a safe school is a simple extension of the safe neighborhood concept. Safe cars are driven by safe drivers. I'll take a ride with a conscientious, defensive driver in a VW Beetle (an old one) before a ride with a hot-headed, self-important road-rager in a Volvo XC90 any day of the week.

This brings me to preparation.
We've all heard one variation or another on the "6 Ps".
Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance.

This is why families make disaster plans, put together go-bags, and utilize alarm systems on homes.

It's better to have all of these things and not need them, than need them and not have them. It's not about feeling safer. It's about taking steps in preparation against the presence of danger. We can't predict where or when disaster will strike so, we prepare, we plan and we train.

And this is why CHL/CCW holders carry concealed.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Things I've learned, episode 1: Texas

We've been in TX a year and I have managed to learn a bit about state, as well as a good deal about San Antonio. Contrary to the concern expressed by not a few folks back in CA, we didn't land in a little cow town filled with rednecks and arch-conservative oil industry WASPs.

In no particular order:

-We've checked the figures and it IS most certainly true; Texas is freaking gigantic. They have land here, and lots of it. It amazes me to drive to the inside of the 1604 loop (more of the freeways here later) and find 1+ acre lots of land. There are even large lots to be found further in. The developers here are still able to build out, rather than up.

-Texas, at least central Texas, is a remarkably green place. I was expecting a much more arid climate here. I realize there are parts of Texas that fit that description, but San Antonio is nicely green for most of the year, dormant lawns notwithstanding.

-Texans are proud of being Texans. Now this is an interesting point. Two days ago I was tooling around the city in my car and I heard the latest of the "Real Men of Genius" commercials on the radio. Now, those of you who know me understand how it causes me honest to goodness pain acknowledging Bud Light (or any other pilsener) as beer, but let's face it, the RMG ad campaign is fucking hilarious. The ad salutes Mr. Way Too Proud of Texas Guy and it's an unnervingly accurate representation of a certain contingent of Texans. RMG Of course, most of the Texans who fit this description likely attend Cowboy Church. (I honestly wish I could say that was enough on that subject but as easily imagined, I'll make my way back to Cowboy churches shortly). However, most of the folks if met out here do not fit that rather colorful description. Point in fact, most of our neighbors, friends, co-workers, and acquaintances out here aren't even from Texas, let alone San Antonio. We've met some natives, and they're all amazing people, but by an large, San Antonio is as much a transplant city guessed it, San Diego. We've met plenty of people who really like it here, but not nearly as many of the "Don't mess with Texas" variety as we'd feared. I will say that Texans are more cohesive than Californians. Texans tend to stick together in a way that I didn't see in California. As much as I'd like to crack a joke about that, I think I'll just say we really like it here, and have met some amazing and friendly folks.

-Mexican food. Oh boy, Mexican food. We've found one (1) restaurant in San Antonio that serves food that we'd identify in a line-up as Mexican food. All of the others (yes, all) serve food that resembles Mexican food to varying degrees. Some indicators you are eating Tex-Mex rather than Mexican food: your refried beans have no cheese on them (this vexes my daughter immensely), your beef tamales are filled with ground beef with only a hint of seasoning (they call it picadillo beef, I call it...well that's not really important), your beef chile relleno, assuming you can find one will be served with ground beef, your beef taco will be filled with ground beef. Are we seeing a pattern here yet? Oh, the enchiladas, NO RED SAUCE FOR YOU!!! Your enchilada sauce choices are verde (excellent), brown gravy (huh?), or...chili con carne (WTF?)! Yes, many places here serve enchiladas covered in watery chili. The mind boggles. There is, however, a silver lining here, two of them, actually. The first is that Texan Mexican restaurants almost invariably make excellent beef fajitas. My personal theory is that making fajitas is close enough to BBQing for Texans to get into it. The other silver lining is the Los Robertos on Bitters Road, just west of the 281. It is an honest to goodness, Mexican Taquería! There we can enjoy our favorites, from tacos and tamales filled with seasoned and SHREDDED beef or pork, huge carne asada nachos plates, or even carne asada fries.

-BBQ. Texans kick some serious ass when it comes to making BBQ. Rudy's, Grady's, and a host of other restaurants (not including Bill Millers, the McDonalds of BBQ) serve up outstanding BBQ every day of the week.

-Drivers here and the freeways they abuse. Really only two points of interest here. Yield signs. Some demented city planner decided it would be fun to pepper the cloverleafs and off-ramps with yield signs. This is problematic since San Antonio drivers seem to have only the loosest grasp on yielding. Related to this is the issue of merging and weaving. Simply put, this is apparently a much neglected topic in Texas driving classes.

Churches. This is definitely the place for a person who has an affinity for big-ass churches. The churches here are not as in-your-face as churches I found in Arkansas (after 15 years I still remember the "Not making it to church, if Satan can't make you bad he'll just make you busy" sign we stumbled onto in Rustleville). However, there are certainly a LOT of them. The most interesting phenomenon though, would be the Cowboy Churches, or Cowboy worship. I'm not going to put in any direct link because, well I really don't want to encourage that particular flavor of strangeness. However, if you're interested in attending a cowboy church, or just interested in sharing with me an amused if slightly nervous chuckle, then just Google "Cowboy Church". You'll see what I mean in short order.

More later.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Lies our parents told us

So my lovely wife has yet again inspired me. Last time it was giving white socks a try, this time it's inflicting...err, sharing my deranged thoughts with anyone stumbling by this space no longer for rent.

Without further ado...

We were watching LA Ink last night, yes we're so wild, and Kat (the owner/star of the shop, of late from Miami Ink) said something that got me to thinking. She said how she really hates it when people say how "everything happens for a reason." Kat went on to say how she believed that there were some things (ie, events) from which there were no good lessons to be learned.

Kat, in case you happen to read this, I agree whole-heartedly.

"Everything happens for a reason"

The implication is that everything happens for a good reason.

This is a load of bull.

Now I understand that when things go wrong in life people seek solace in rationalization, justification, and other exercises in everyday deception. I get it, really, I do. When tragedy strikes, folks want to make believe that their loss is part of some bigger plan, some grander scheme, a casualty in the war b/t good verses evil, Mac verses PC, Coke verses Pepsi (sorry Pepsi drinkers, Coke won years ago, slew Pepsi and now wears your cola-deity like a sock-puppet).

Here's the rub, this "everything happens for a reason" schtick? It's just another one of those lies our parents told us. We, in turn, have told them to our children. I know, I'm a parent now. All those maxims about hard-work, diligence, fairness, and just deserts...they are all lies, comforting little lies told to children in hope of making them feel safe and secure, so they'll grow up healthy, wealthy and wise. Children grow up (or out, especially those chubby American kids) and they become disabused of these fables. It's not a bad thing, it's part of their awakening to the world.

As adults I feel we should look tragedy straight in the face. To do anything less cheapens your loss.