Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

19
Nov
18

I’m not ready for this – Part 1

Bas Senior Day

Senior Day with Sebastian, Melina and me.

So it begins.

Or rather, so it begins to end.

This past weekend — Saturday November 17, to be exact — marked the end of my eldest son’s football season and, unless something really crazy happens (hey the University of Southern California football team could need a scholarship athlete to pull up their GPA!), the end of his football career.

And with that it hit me that Sebastian, my first-born child, is really wrapping things up a and hurtling towards graduation, college and full on adulthood.

I’m not ready for this.

I mean, who is?

I guess some of you are, but if the experiences of friends are anything to judge by, it’s a very few.

Complicating this is football, something which has been a massive part of this family’s life for a decade. Our younger son, Simon, isn’t a football dude. He may be in the Marching Band when he heads to high school next year, so we may still be at occasional games.

And I’ll be there almost every Saturday, covering the game for the town paper as long as it’s around.

But neither of those things are the same experience as actively having a stake in what’s happening and a connection to the team as exists when you have a kid on it.

It doesn’t help that the game ended badly for Bas’ team, as they lost in the State Sectional final, on their home field. It also doesn’t help that for the fourth year in a row he was hurt, which probably cost him a starting job, so he didn’t play quite as much at the end of the season as he may have wanted.

It doesn’t help that football was a place he and I have connected for a long time. Less so as he has moved to high school and become interested in other things, I stopped coaching and we both had other things to occupy our time.

So it’s bittersweet to see the end of football.

Mind you, there is a small, guilty bit of me that is a little relieved. I can’t tell you how hard it was to divest myself of emotion for the team – a team with a significant number of kids I coached plus my son on it – during the seasons. I would imagine my editor probably could tell you stories where he rolled his eyes.

It’s easier to manage that when I don’t have a son there. I still know the kids and have a connection but it’s easier to shove that aside when it’s not your kid.

What makes it seem a little better are the things I saw from my son as the season progressed. He became more confident and invested. He also cared a great deal about his teammates.

He would defend the quarterback when we talked about that kid’s struggles.  He felt sympathy when two of his team were lost for the season right before the playoffs. Bas was supportive of players who earned spots over him, no matter how much he might have wished to have won the job himself.

And while he was hurting because he had just lost his final game ever, he was expressing concern for the future of the team, and hoping the two offensive linemen who won’t be graduating this spring would have a good last season when they were seniors themselves next year.

Football seemed to bring out some of the best in him. He was never one for the limelight – each week a senior is asked to lead the team onto the field with the Mountie flag, and Bas said he declined it when asked if he wanted to do it – but he was always the kid who had his teammate’s back.

Last season, when the Mounties won the State Championship – undefeated, I might add – Sebastian’s role was pretty limited. Some of that was due to injury, some of that was due to the team being ridiculously talented and deep.

So when the game was over and Montclair was celebrating, he admitted to me it was a bit bittersweet – he felt like he didn’t do a ton to help, and wished he had had a chance.

I tried to point out to him that what he did each week as a member of the scout team — a group of guys who run the plays the coaches think the next opponent will use — and when he got on the field to give another player a breather, was very important.

Every day at practice, the coaches knew they could rely on Bas to make sure he gave his all, did what he was supposed to and help the starters get prepared for the upcoming game. If the scout team isn’t focused and working as hard as they can, the starters won’t be as prepared.

It’s kind of an important lesson to learn, one I hope he will take as he moves through life. You don’t always get the limelight, and you don’t always get the accolades. That doesn’t make your role or value less.

Most of the time, the people around you notice. I think his coaches and fellow teammates did, and I think  his future coworkers and friends will as well.

A chapter in our lives is ending, one of many as we move towards his high school graduation. It only just hit me as we all sat eating dinner Saturday night, that we are at the beginning of the end of Sebastian as a kid.

And at the end of the beginning of the rest of his life.

I’m not sure how I feel about it. I’m not sure if I will for a long time.

I know I’ll revisit this feeling, whatever it is, a lot this year, hence the “Part 1.” At some point, maybe we’ll reach the end of it.

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14
Mar
17

Technically speaking, my son is technically challenged

So a while back my eldest decided he wanted to get back into learning to design graphics, edit and other things like that on a computer. He also wanted to play more advanced video games. His laptop (which I have currently stolen because mine died) doesn’t have the power for any of it, and he also wanted to be able to upgrade things if a new computer became obsolete.

He asked for cash from his grandparents and my wife and I for his birthday and Christmas in lieu of other gifts.

So this week he finally ordered his computer, and it arrived yesterday. I was at the office, trying to get my work done since nobody was making it in during this blizzard. He texted me that he couldn’t get the computer to turn on. He had set it up, but it wouldn’t power on. I gave him a few suggestions, which he had already done, and then told him I couldn’t really help anymore as I was not there to see what was going on.

A short time later I got this text (which also contains my reaction). His texts are the ‘red’ ones.

dumbass2

In his defense there were two switches to hit for reasons I cannot understand.

That said, damn, son. I understand teen brain but wow.

 

10
Mar
17

JAILBREAK

There are perils in being a work from home dad. Constant snacking of everything in the house. Forgetting to shower. Having a dog come and attack your lunch.

For parents who work from home and have young children, there’s the added bonus of the sneaky little buggers showing up when you’re trying to do a television interview.

 

This makes me glad my children were in school for most of the videos and radio interviews I did when they were younger.

There’s so much to unpack here.

I would imagine this gentleman doesn’t work from home much as the very first thing you learn when doing live interviews from home is you have to lock your door, especially when you are doing a TV shot.

Of course, getting the dogs out of the room is a close second, but I see someone forgot to lock their door.

I love how the little girl in yellow bops into the room. She just wants to be a star, right? And then Baby Wheels comes in and everything goes off the rails with the panicked woman – mom? very much updating her resume nanny? – flies in to try and rescue the situation, but only really makes it worse.

Or better, at least for those of us watching at home.

Hopefully there wasn’t a ton of yelling after the segment, because kids are going to be kids and they’ll get away and find you if they know you’re home. I’m not going to criticize the guy much for not just rolling with it and plopping his kid on his lap during what appeared to be a fairly dry and serious topic. He was trying and failing to keep it straight, I respect that. He had spent a ton of time dolling up his bedroom to look more serious – the map, the books oh so carefully laid out on the bed, the suit and tie (Was he wearing just shorts? We can only guess.).

How hard was the host laughing off-camera?

I can’t blame the kids – they just wanted to be on the BBC.

A wise man (maybe George Patton, Maybe Dwight Eisenhower) once said “No plan survives contact with the enemy.”

Let me amend that to read “No home office survives any contact with a toddler.”

PS – when my kids were home and I had to shoot a video, I usually kept them quiet by making them my camera crew. They were still older than this lot, but it worked.

So glad my kids are past this. As my good friend (and PackersNews.com writer) Aaron Nagler remarked on Twitter, “I now expect kids to crash every one of these.”

Of course, Aaron has had his own issues.

08
Mar
17

Back in the NJ Groove

After way too long, Dad Moon Rising is back! Exciting!

It’s been a crazy period of time, and one which made me really have to consider work-life balance. Seriously – and I am sure you guys all have similar experiences – its easy to get caught up on the hamster wheel until you drop dead.

So, after banging my head against the wall doing nothing but freelance, and being busy with nowhere near as much income, I decided to find a regular gig with little things like regular pay.

This past football season was especially hard, given I had one gig basically disappear and another fall apart mid-season.

So after one too many hair-yanking seasons doing that, I decided two things: 1) to work in the places and with the people I enjoy being with and 2) start writing other things.

The first is easy enough in many ways – I adore working with the folks at Footballguys.com and have really enjoyed working with Pro Football Weekly this past season doing film-breakdowns. I may add one or two things to that, but most of the rest of it may fall by the wayside.

Coupled with that, I have begun working on an exciting venture here at home in Montclair, New Jersey. In the middle of last November, The Montclair Times – at the time our main local paper – was bought by Gannett and basically stopped doing local stuff. Some great folks decided to step in and replace the Times and I’m doing high school and local sports with them. The paper is called The Montclair Local and it has a great group of people on staff. It’s been a blast covering high school so far, and I love going into an office again.

You can check out the website, or if you’re local, get a subscription.

This blog is part of the answer for the second point. I love doing it and so here we are. As before I’ll talk about my kids, my family and my coaching experiences, but I’m also going to tackle more and more social issues as well.

I’ll try and be balanced, but this is my blog through my lens, so expect it to lean largely left.

But it won’t all be that stuff, so if that’s not your brand of vodka, do drop by for everything else.

I’m also working on some copywriting type stuff and – *drum roll* – a book! More on that later.

So I’m back!

Let’s have some fun, shall we?

 

Now I have to figure out how I embed videos and whatnot.

03
Jun
16

Fandom IS Broken – my Storified Tweets

So I tried to embed the Storify story, but as has been the case when I try to embed anything, it isn’t working.

As that’s the case, please follow the link for my thoughts on the article “Fandom is Broken” which has ironically broken the internet called “Fandom is Broken”.keep calm and geek on

30
Mar
16

PODCAST!

We have the dawn of a new age – I finally was broken (by the Batman-Superman mess) and have launched a DMR podcast called The Nerd Multiverse which will talk all things geeky from comics to movies to RPGs to everything. Sometimes with special guests called ‘my family.’

You can find it here and soon on ITunes.

10
Feb
16

Back with a Dad Joke

It’s been a while, huh? I’m back with this thing though, and what better way to start it off again than with a dad joke and my eldest son’s response to it.

He responded perfectly, by the way.

BAS JOKE

I could have put it together in a different way though –

CORAL




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What I’m Into:

Reading: Dead Beat by Jim Butcher Listening to: The Heist, Macklemore Watching: Damages
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