Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

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.

 

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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

02
Jun
15

Responsibility and Charity

wirekidsI just watched the fourth season of The Wire again. If you haven’t watched the series, I cannot recommend it enough as it is a fantastic depiction of inner city life and struggles in Baltimore.

A running current throughout the fourth season is the struggle of schools in a large city, especially schools in more impoverished areas. As we follow many of the same characters we had been watching the previous season, we are also introduced to new ones, including four boys who are attending middle school.

All four students suffer from less-than-stellar home lives. For three of them, their situation ends up worse. The fourth gets taken in by one of the adult characters and the hope is his life will have a chance to be better.

The other three though, they get left behind. The system fails them, even when members of the system try to help them. Sometimes those helpful people learn how little control they really have in the lives of the children they interact with—others find their efforts make things much worse.

This was all on my minds last weekend when my older son’s friend came over out of the blue. We don’t see this young man all that often, but had run into him at a sports orientation for the high school (oh Lord, I’m about to have a high-schooler) and I told him to drop by any time.

So he did the very next day.

I don’t know this young man very well. He’s a very good kid from what I’ve seen and from what we understand, has a tough life.

His mom has moved in and out of town several times, moving this boy and his step-brother into different schools and school districts. One such landing spot saw this young man in a poor school with a lot of fights and what sounded like a bad situation. Looking to get him back in a better school district (and away from trouble), his mother moved him into an apartment back in our town with some relatives. It wasn’t ideal of course, since the family had a two-bedroom apartment, multiple kids of their own and my son’s friend slept on the couch.

Then the school district realized he wasn’t living with him mom, who was no longer in the confines of the town, and kicked him out of school. If your guardian doesn’t live in the district, you don’t belong in the district.

So back to his mother he went, back to the school with the fights and bullying. He told his mother he refused to go back, that he would get himself suspended if she made him and lo and behold, that happened.

His mother recently moved back to town and after several months of not being in school at all, my son’s friend is back at school.

We’ve become one of the places he shows up at when he is trying not to be home. He doesn’t talk about home life much but those of us who have reached out to him have pieced together what seems like something close to the truth.

His mom and he don’t get along. I have heard a step-father mentioned (most alarmingly once when he smashed the young man’s X-Box in a rage) but it doesn’t sound like he lives with them. His dad is an ex-convict who is in town but can only afford a studio apartment. I don’t know a ton about his interactions with his son.

Nobody seems to care that he disappears for a day or two at a time, floating from couch to couch. When he was over last weekend, we invited him to sleep over and asked if he needed to call home. He looked like us like we were crazy. Why would they care seemed to be his attitude.

Of course, all most of what we ‘know’ comes from the boy. Another parent has spoken with his mother a few times, and it seems as if a lot of our assumptions are right, but really we don’t know all of what is going on.

It seems very much as if this is a boy in danger of being left behind by the system and the people who should be supporting him.

And I’m very aware that there are elements of his life I cannot understand. I’m white, I grew up in an affluent suburb and really didn’t want for much. He’s African-American and having to struggle to make ends meet.

I’m very conscious of my privilege in this situation, very conscious of not ‘white knighting’ (in a very literal sense) and coming to the aid of someone I cannot understand. The assumptions we have about his home life concern me because they are very much assumptions. I’m not saying he’s a liar, but he is still a kid and kids stretch the truth.

It’s one of many reasons nobody has involved Child Protective Services—that and knowing that it could make things a whole lot worse in many ways.

But as he floats from house to house and various people feed him, make sure he’s showered and eaten and going to school, it’s clear to me that somewhere, somehow the ball has been dropped.

If we had an extra room, I’m pretty sure my wife and I would let him crash there all the time so he knew he always had a safe place. We don’t though, so we do what we can and hope it’s enough.

And so I think about that season of The Wire and hope he’s the one boy for whom things managed to get better and not one of the kids who drop through the cracks.




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What I’m Into:

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