All posts by Brian

About Brian

Bungle-prone parent. Bungle-prone lots of other things, too.

News From the Frontiers of Science

Okay, so in this case it’s a little bit old news, but seeing as Annoying Little Brother has been engaging in amateur reverse peristalsis for distance this evening, a promising finding in the gross-as-heck field of norovirus research:

Up until now, we have had to use other methods to study norovirus, such as molecular techniques like RT-qPCR, electron microscopy, human volunteer studies, and…

Hold up right there. I want to know how much somebody gets paid to fill up their innards with norovirus on purpose. Annoying Little Brother wants to know if he can volunteer for the study retroactively.

Always the capitalist, my son.


How The Grinch Stole Christmas (The Epilogue)

I wrote this five years ago and it seemed to go over well enough with all nine people who read it at the time, so maybe it may find a wider audience and even reach double digit readership. Here comes five minutes of your life you’ll never get back.

And Daddy Who hoped in the fridge would at least
Be a cutlet or two of leftover roast beast
But the kitchen was strewn with flattened floofloovers
And trampled tartookas, whohoopers, gardookas
The Grinch was passed out in a heap on the floor
With ten empty bottles of Who-brew, or more
“I wager his liver grew three sizes, too”
Said Daddy Who, wondering just what he would do
To quiet the grumbling noise in his tummy
When the Grinch had inhaled every single thing yummy
Thus, Daddy Who went and MacGyvered a meal
Of leftover ramen, corn chips, and an eel
No time for the bizilbigs, floof or pantookas,
For Monday meant work with his fellow palookas
“So go get some sleep, my sweet yutz” said the missus
“But your eel-breath means I’ll skip holiday kisses”
So long, Christmas
So long, beer
So long relatives, far and near
But Christmas stays within our grip
Although there’s no more onion dip
Christmas spirit still applies
Especially when mom makes pies
Stay heart to heart and hand in hand
When Christmas doesn’t go as planned.

The Geology Lesson

We’re helping Little Brother* out with geology this evening, and as we move into the unit on volcanos we have found it impossible to say the word “magma” unless we use Dr. Evil voice.


Which is problematic at present, since Little Brother isn’t quite old enough for Austin Powers movies.

At least it gives me a chance to introduce Little Brother to some awesome DadTuneage:

* – He’s not Annoying Little Brother at present because Little Sister is on a class trip to Washington DC. The two will resume using Annoying when they reunite at the conclusion of her field trip.

How To Talk To Your Kids About That… Thing…On TV Sunday Night

I don’t think I’ve ever been so glad to be an ex-journalist as I am this election year. But these two put it better than Annoying Little Brother, Annoying Big Sister and I ever could.

“So, Dad, did you know Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are having a debate tonight?”


“Are we watching it?”


“Why not?”

“For the same reasons we don’t watch German porn, or videos about how to treat gangrene.”

And read the whole thing.


Dad Expects The Spanish Inquisition

The thing about having an inquisitive 10-year-old like Annoying Little Brother is that the inquisitive 10-year-old has no boundaries as to the timing of whatever has piqued his curiosity; furthermore, his cross-examination technique is relentless, and the usual parental bobs, weaves, laying-down-of-the-law and attempts to change the subject – they do nothing. Which leads to sotto voce exchanges like this one from earlier today in the front pew:

A.L.B.: “Is it really the actual Body of Christ?”
Me: “I’ll tell you later.”
“I’m eating it so I want to know.”
“It hasn’t hurt you yet, has it?”
“No, but I want to know.”
“But Communion is in five minutes and I’m going first. I’m nervous.”
“You chose the pew, kid.”
“So tell me.”
“Well, um, did they cover this part yet in CCD?”
“Is it His skin?”
“The Church really isn’t specific about…”
“So it’s, like, his blood and guts?”
(sigh) “It’s way more complicated than that.”
“Communion doesn’t taste like anything.”
“It’s not supposed to. What did you want, nacho-flavored?”

That actually got him thinking – but if you thought the process of going up for Communion would move him along to something else, perhaps saying prayers for his grandparents and mom and dad and the cats and his friend with the broken wrist and maybe even Annoying Big Sister…no.

(looks up at the Cross) “No wonder He’s so skinny.”

Can we get some help down here, Joseph?