away message

Friday, January 28, 2011 | 1 Comment(s)

hey all

im at another one of those psych conferences.  this ones in san antonio.  its no vegas (in terms of blog fodder), but its a unique city to be sure.

the internet at the conference is once again a "pay to play" type situation, and this homey does not play that game.  no siree.

so ill be back, like elvis, in february.

please miss me.


Oh, but what's in a name.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 | 5 Comment(s)

Let's get into it.

I have always strongly encouraged my child-bearing friends to consider Mattitiyahu for their childrens' names.  i say, "it works for both a boy and a girl!"  no ego.  no pretense.  i simply want to live forever, even if it is through other people's children.  Is that too much to ask?   These are children i love mind you--i have some personal investment in.  I'm not just looking for a whole bunch of random Mattitiyahu's popping up all over the place.  (hell, let's be honest.  I would totally friggin LOVE that!)  I figure it would even take some of the ingrained pressure to have a kid off of me.  Mmf has an easy out, her first name is common so she finds nomenclative doppelgangers all over the place.   Me, i'm subjected to injustices which include having my name swapped out and replaced by the Hasidic Rapper (and formerly Matthew from White Plains) Matisyahu.  Not that there is anything particularly wrong with Matisyahu (except that some of his songs make me feel like im back in synagogue . . . in a bad way).  I've even been to one of his concerts (which is saying something considering i don't go to a lot of music shows.).   But, when the check comes back from brunch and it says, as the tab's name, "Matisyahu's Crew," you start to hate the guy.  I swear its not just because he's jewish ;)

Like i was saying.  Name your babies after me.  The name has been working out great for me.  I would go so far as to say naming your baby Mattitiyahu would give them an advantage in life.  Let me create a case using Social Psychology

There is tons of research that says that the more time and contact you have with a person, the more liking there will be (im summarizing folks).  This can happen on a very large scale, e.g. liking a romantic partner more and more as time goes on. (there can be a ceiling effect over enough time e.g. the romantic partner break-up).  or it can happen on a very small level.  Like the DMV.  Whenever there is a line, where a person has discretion over how quickly you get served (aka. doctor's office, pharmacy, restaurant), those are people you want to like you, and therefore being able to spend those few extra moments with that person can influence your experience.  What's more, if you could get them to take some kind of personal interest in you, even at a superficial level, the research says that this will end up to your advantage.

Well, no matter where i go, when i give my name, the person asks about it.  every time.  Where's that from? What language is that?  And i tell them, politely and engagingly, it's Hebrew, biblical. From the Hannukah story.  And we chit-chat, i smile.  And while i may be a manipulative sonofabitch, i'm convinced this gets me faster everything.  Minimally, i never get lost in the shuffle.

There it is folks, i just made a PhD level argument to name your next born Mattitiyahu.  hell, i'll even throw in some blog posts about the growing boy/girl.  And of course, ill love them the most.  More than all the others (i can say that cause none of them can read yet--and their parents are all way too busy parenting to read my blog--cept Eric.  Eric im sorry, but until Maytal, Avi, & Orly have a bro/sis Mattitiyahu, this is the truth).

i know i know.  i know what you're all thinking.  this is like an exercise in narcissism.  And, you are correct sir/madam.  But at least im up front about it.  And almost all great thinkers were misunderstood during their lifetimes.  Perhaps this is the narcissistic nugget of truth.  Maybe baby-makers are simply a means to an ends (the gays would FINALLY get the last laugh).  Maybe we can substitute external definition as more important than all this genetic mumbo-jumbo.  I mean, this at least makes as much sense as creationism -- and they have tried to add that to school curriculum.  that means "in schools" people.

or.  i could be totally wrong.  in which case, im going directly to hell, no passing go.  no $200.

totally worth it.

What's Cooler than Cool: Ice Cold

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 | 3 Comment(s)

Today was an ice storm.  Cause that what happened.  Because we were warned that it was coming, I went out early to the pharmacy to get what i needed (aka. toilet paper).

As I'm waiting for a prescription to be filled, an elderly woman with what i can only call a "snow cane" was in front of me.  (the snow cane looked like a regular cane with a panel of astro-turf like grip at the bottom).  None of this was the crazy thing that happened, however.  Next, as the woman is meanderingly checking out, she looks down and sees some electric thermometers.  She says, "oh, and are these some thermometers?  I'll take one of those."  Now my first thought is that only the elderly see thermometers as impulse buy fodder at the check-out.  And before i could have a second thought, the elderly woman was re-engaging the check out girl (this checkout took about 15 minutes all together): "Are these the only thermometers you got?  Where are the others."  The checkout girl was more than gracious as she prepared to show the woman the thermometer isle.  "What kind of thermometer are you looking for?"  A totally appropriate question.

She replies, "I need one that works even if the person isn't breathing.  Like in the armpit."

Let's count the problems with this statement out:

1.  If the person/animal whose temperature needs to be taken isn't breathing, taking his/her temperature is NOT the first area of concern.

2.  Is this a Kathy Bates incident.  Does this puttering old lass have a dungeon at home where she keeps her victims tied up.

3.  Does she need their temperatures cause she's making a stew out of them?

I take a step back.  What is craziest to me is that at least 3 pharmacy workers heard this remark and none showed any spark of concern.  Having worked in a pharmacy myself, I understand how the monotony of life behind the counter can dull your senses, but i'm pretty sure this would at least have gotten a sidelong comment.

I mean, i remarked out loud, "if it's not breathing, does it matter what kind of thermometer it is?"

People either didn't hear me or pretended not to hear me.   You all woulda laughed .  .  .  right? 

Eating at the Big Boy Table

Sunday, January 16, 2011 | 0 Comment(s)

Unquestionably, i have learned a lot from blogging thus far.  But, i have learned one hard and fast rule.  If I blog about anything going in or coming out of my body, i will lose a blog follower.  Now i know that there has to be a floor to this effect, as i know a good number of my followers, and i also know them to have a high tolerance for the fluid talk. 

Early on i decided that this was a trade off i was willing to make.  the fact is, a percentage of my life (considering i test couples' saliva for a living at the moment, this percentage may be higher than you think) deals with bodily fluids.  And as passionate as i am about equality and not hanging strangers hang their nasty ass bathing suit outside their locker, at times i can be equally passionate about poop, saliva, and boogers.  I like to think (rationalize) that this just adds to my renaissance man appeal.  You can win with everyone, and i choose to lose with people who can't take civil discourse on the merits of nasal exploration.

Let's move on.

Last night mmf and i did something that blew my mind . . . but before i do that i need to tell you some brief background.  Over the new year, mmf and i moved to a new digs.  I had lived at my last residence for almost 5 years (mmf was there for 2.5 of them), and frankly we just started to outgrow it.  So, in looking for a new place we had some criteria:

1. Bigger
2. Off-site landlords (while i loved my past landlords, we were ready to be out of the "in-law apartment" phase of our life).
3. dog friendly
4. bathroom next to the bedroom (past apartment you had to walk upstairs to pee (the bedroom was in the basement)

Our new place is bigger.  Much bigger. It's a house.  There is color on the walls.  A washing machine in the basement and a dry attic up top.  Check.  The property is managed by a nice guy who owns a property management firm, and the owner lives in the town over.  Check.  The new place is dog friendly and has a backyard (when not covered in 2 feet of snow of course).  Check.  The bathroom is  . . . downstairs from the bedroom.  No check.  That said, at least we no longer sleep underground.  Having the sun hit my face in the morning is a revelation.  It's been way too long.

All up, the positives far outweighed the negatives -- and we jumped at the opportunity.  Total travel distance = 1.3 miles.   We moved down the road.  Unfortunately, we still had to move everything.  That part is always sucky.

Back to the story.   In our old place, mmf and i ate japanese-style using a large long glass coffee table as our dinner table.  In our new place, not only do we have room to use our actual kitchen table, but the addition of the dog certainly motivates us to do so.  Grover isn't a super annoying beggar or anything, but he is a dog, and he does love food. 

So, last night mmf and i did something that blew my mind -- we ordered pizza, and when we sat down to eat, we laid the box right on the table with our plates!!!  For as long as i can remember -- at least a decade, whenever i ate pizza, the box was placed on the floor next to us, in the kitchen on the counter waiting for us to come get our next slice, or even on the coffee table as we sat with our plates on the couch (back in boston).  But never was the eating of pizza civilized enough to accommodate both our plates and the pizza box.  As i stood next to the table just staring at the box/plate set-up remarking, "Wo wo wo."  Mmf looked back and said, "Right!?!" 

This is apparently one of those hidden perks of growing up.

Diggin for Freedom

Thursday, January 13, 2011 | 1 Comment(s)

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Back in the Saddle Again

Monday, January 10, 2011 | 1 Comment(s)

The best part of not blogging for awhile is the living i do in between.

most of the time.

my new years "break" was marked with the highs of being with friends in the Vermont woods (insinuation?) -- good food -- good drink -- many many laughs (e.g. men vs. women in a snow penis vs. snow vagina contest . . . everybody wins).  I also have had the warm fuzzies of getting the new pup. 

aaaand the lows as well.   mmf pulled her neck something horrid over christmas with her folks.  bummer.  and the dog spent his first day puking about 40 times until i had to leave work (in tears) to grab him and mmf and figure out where the PET ER is.  Amazingly there is a 24 hr pet ER in South Deerfield.  This information has greatly enhanced our pet owning experience.  Knowing there is a safety net, and that the people at said safety net are incredible.  My (our) dog puked what looked like 4 running sunny-side up eggs all over their waiting room.  *BOOM* there is a mop and a "don't worry about it, i'm just happy it's coming our the front end." 

You have to understand.  This was my first day as a pet owner.  So when grover starts puking all over the place, mmf are looking at each other like, "are we those crazy neurotic new parents who stress over the size of their dogs poops, and bring them into the vet for the slightest coughs.  cause we don't want to be those people.  but he's puked a ton."  When he lost his "puppiness," we knew to bring him in.  he's fine now.  thankfully. 

so im back.  im on facebook less (dog).  im outside more (dog).  and im still committed to NOT writing a doggie blog.  and im still failing miserably in the new year.