Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Six Weeks of Curtis

So, little Curtis has been with us for almost six weeks now. We like him pretty good and intend to keep him. (I have a friend who adopted a kid a few months ago. I was a little surprised to hear that you basically have a one year guarantee when you adopt. If it doesn't work, you can just give 'em back.)

In some ways, newborn #2 seems easier than the first one. But it's likely just a change in perspective. We had a tough go with Paige from the beginning. She had acid reflux and would cry and cry. We spent many hours bouncing her and trying to hold her just right so she'd be happy. Curtis is pretty good for the most part, though he still isn't a very good night sleeper. And he barfs a lot.

Curtis probably seems a lot easier to deal with because we are so busy trying to handle Paige. It's nice to have a kid who just lies there and never cries, "No! Bye, bye change diaper" or "Bye, bye, wear Paigey's shoes."

But adding a second kid makes everything harder. Traci and I are back in the stage where going to the grocery store, getting in the shower, or cleaning the house seems like an insurmountable task. Much planning is required for anything.

Paige is doing pretty good with Curtis, or Cur-TIS, as she calls him. She has to climb all the way over him in order to regularly "kiss his head, kiss his head." She likes to hold him. But when she's done, she just pushes him over.

Traci is getting very little sleep. But she likes the kid, too.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Death Cab for Cutie @ Thanksgiving Point

Death Cab for Cutie
w/ Tegan and Sara
May 26, 2008
Thanksgiving Point

Worst. Venue. Ever. It was bad enough that Memorial Day was a rainy mess. But it was made infinitely worse when the Death Cab for Cutie show was supposed to start at 5:00 p.m. and the Thanksgiving Point crew kept the crowd standing in line outside until 7:30 p.m. (Then, as the doors finally opened, they announced that all cars parked on the frontage road—about 200 or so—would be towed if they weren’t moved.)

Starting two-and-a-half hours late and facing a 10:00 p.m. music curfew made the event feel incredibly disjointed. Identical twin duo Tegan and Sara seemed out of sync as they tried to rush through an abbreviated opening set and Rogue Wave was dropped from the bill entirely. Death Cab didn’t fare much better, though their troubles were of their own making.

Just kicking off the promotion of their newest album “Narrow Stairs,” Ben Gibbard and the boys are understandably excited about playing the material. The problem is that the new material just isn’t that good. I was hoping that the new songs, which are much less produced than their immediate predecessors, would sound better live. No such luck. Though current single “I Will Possess Your Heart” was passionate, the rest of the “Narrow Stairs” material fell flat.

The band continued through the set, alternating between not-yet-familiar new material and obscure older songs. Occassionally, they’d throw the crowd a bone with a song or two from their best albums, “Transatlanticism” and “Plans.”

Accompanied only by his acoustic guitar, Gibbard sounded amazing on “I Will Follow You Into the Dark.” On “Soul Meets Body,” however, his thin tenor didn’t have enough power to do the song justice. It may have been the 40 degree air, but both he and guitarist Chris Walla struggled with the high notes all night long.

For all of the disappointments of the evening, Death Cab was not about to let the crowd go home unhappy. The encore featured “Title and Registration” and a shout out to the band’s early days of playing at Kilby Court. They closed the night with the phenomenal “Transatlanticism,” climaxing with Gibbard’s plea to “Come on, come on” reverberating through the Utah County night sky. All ill feelings were immediately washed away.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

word association

Though she never wants to listen to us, it's obvious Paige at least hears the things we say. Now when we change her diaper she immediately says, "Whoa, big poops!" regardless of the contents.

Diapers have become very intriguing to her and she's very interested in what's going on with Curtis' diaper. Yesterday I was just about done changing him when he squirted all over me. Paige watched the whole thing in quiet amazement. After I had gotten him all cleaned up and in a new diaper, Paige declared, "All gone, water poops!" Apparently, we have never taught about urine. But she knows about water and she knows about poops. Water poops. Makes sense to me.

On a linguistic note, I also like that Paige calls motorcycles "motor bicycles" and refers to her belly button as her "tummy button." I loved when I said goodbye to her this morning she replied, "Fax me."

Reviews: Local H, Say Hi, Ting Tings

Local H
12 Angry Months

Local H’s seventh studio release is supposed to document the myriad of emotions experienced after the bitter end of a long relationship. But it turns out frontman Scott Lucas really only feels one thing--anger. “So, baby could you do me a favor?” he rants on the opening track, “Fall off the earth and I'll see you later.”

The lyrical vitriol of “12 Angry Months” is matched throughout by Brian St. Clairs’ abusive drumming and Lucas’ heavy, 70s rock guitar riffing. The duo’s approach has always been heavy-handed, but on previous records they have managed to avoid metal monotony by delivering plenty of hooks. Other than the soft strumming of “The Summer of Boats,” where Lucas admits “Life was perfectly sad, it’s perfectly sadder now,” there is not much worth remembering about his angry year. A disappointing release by our last living link to the grunge area.

Rating: 2 of 4
For fans of: Nirvana, Soundgarden

Say Hi
The Wishes and the Glitch

The band’s name has gotten shorter—cut down from Say Hi to Your Mom—but the sound has remained pretty much the same. Minimalist guitar, buzzing synth and electronic drums mixed with Eric Elbogen’s wobbly tenor and plenty of melancholy.

The tracks are beautiful in their simplicity. Channeling the The Cure’s poppy years, “The Wishes and the Glitch” allows you to dance without actually feeling happy. Elbogen’s faux-British vocals are not always in tune, but you can’t question the sincerity in his delivery.

Rating: 3.5 of 4
For fans of: Headphones, Bishop Allen

The Ting Tings
We Started Nothing

Teenager girls rejoice! The Ting Tings’ debut album has arrived just in time to be the soundtrack of your summer. When they’re not being featuring on the latest iPod commercial (with their bass-heavy disco romp “Shut Up and Let Me Go”) the British boy-girl duo are writing infectious, dance party anthems filled with cheerleader-shout vocals.

Though “We Started Nothing” has plenty of great material for a mixtape, it is so sugary sweet that it is difficult to take in one sitting. But if you can make past the half-way point, you’ll be rewarded with Cynder Lauper-esque “Keep Your Head” and the record’s best moment, the bouncy-but-restrained “Be the One.” This album isn’t rocket science, it’s summer school. Sit back and enjoy it.

Rating: 2.5 of 4
For fans of: CSS, The Raveonettes

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Curtis at Three Weeks


Curtis seems slightly less amused.

Stuck in the Tree

Paige refuses to speak in sentences. But why would she, when she can express everything she wants/needs with two word phrases?

"Watch Bunny." (I want to watch the stupid Baby Einsteins movie for the 1,000th time.)
"Some fishycrackers." (I refuse to eat anything but cottage cheese, pizza, tamales or goldfish crackers. So give me some fishycrackers.)
"Bubbye church." (I've had enough religion for the day.)

Tonight we were playing with her ball in the backyard. She's getting to be quite the little soccer player and we spent a long time dribbling the ball from one side of the yard to the other before kicking it into the fence and yelling, "Gooooooooooooooooooooalllll!"

After she tired of that, she wanted me to throw the ball into the tree so it would get stuck. She would then yell excitedly, "Stuck in tree!" After I'd get it out, she would immediately yell for me to do it again, "You stuck in tree!" Which was then shortened to "You stuck! You stuck!" When she got really excited, the pronunciation lagged and it sounded like she was yelling repeatedly, "You suck! You suck!" She's so loud that I'm sure all of my neighbors could hear her taunting her poor father. Now I'll never get any respect in this town.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Go Jazz Go

I love how Larry H. Miller skips Sunday Jazz games for religious reasons, but then spends his evening being interviewed on the set of SportsBeat Sunday.

Sunday Jazz games are a funny thing for all us Mormons. If you are a ticket holder, do you go to the game? That's usually an easy decision. But what do you do with your ticket?

"Hey, not-LDS friend, I value the Sabbath day, but you don't so much. Do you want my ticket?"

Values are funny things. If you believe something is bad, but you know others like it, what do you do? Do you sell alcohol at your grocery store? Do you show Brokeback Mountain at your movie theater? Do you play rock and roll shows at Burt's Tiki Lounge?

Whatever the answer, I am happy that the Jazz were able to defend their home court.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Text Me

Now when I leave for work in the morning Paige says the following to me:

"Bye Dad."
"See ya, dad."
"Doei, dad." (Dutch for see ya)
"Call us."
And now the latest addition,
"Text me."

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Curtis in Real Life

So this is pretty much what Curtis is like.

video

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Tub-tastic

Two-and-a-half years into parenting and the gross stuff keeps coming. This morning I got Paige undressed and put her in the tub. I set her pajamas and wet diaper off to the side as we had tubby time.

By the time Paige is done, it is not uncommon for me to be pretty wet, what with all of toys be hurled out of the tub and all. Today I was sitting by the tub when I could feel something wet on the back of my pants. I looked down and I sitting on Paige's very full diaper. All of the contents had seeped out, through my two layers of clothes and to my skin. It's time for this kid to get potty trained.