May 08 2015

Avengers: Age of Ultron Link Roundup (Ongoing) – UPDATED

Now that Avengers: Age of Ultron is finally here, and I’ve seen it (twice), I can start reading about it until my eyeballs fall out. This page will have an an ongoing list of links to some of what I’ve read that I found interesting.

Me and The Avengers movie.

Personally I prefer The Avengers. Have I mentioned that lately?

UPDATED 5/11/15 (new links after the break; you can tell they’re new because they say NEW LINK.)

As you know, I frickin’ LOVED The Avengers, the first one. To say that Avengers: Age of Ultron isn’t quite as good as the first film is like saying I’m shorter than Shaquille O’Neal. Or, to ever-so-slightly borrow a joke from the movie, that this blog post will be shorter than a Eugene O’Neill play. Bottom line: it was a lot of fun, Joss Whedon did a nice job of balancing all of the myriad demands of a film with a ton of characters and future Marvel Cinematic Universe movies to promote, and I’ve already seen the movie twice and would gladly see it again.

As expected with a summer blockbuster, especially a follow-up to a film as great as The Avengers, the Interwebs are filled with articles and blog posts and charts and click-bait about all things Ultron. I went on Rotten Tomatoes planning to read a few reviews. I got as far as one before being sucked into a rabbit hole (maybe I should say tesseract instead) of Age of Ultron related topics.

Oh, the obligatory Spoiler Alert from this point forward. I’m not going to bother watching what I say about the movie, although this isn’t a review and odds are I won’t reveal anything particularly important. But if you haven’t seen the movie yet and prefer to do so without knowing anything about what happens, stop reading now. Then come back. Don’t worry. We’ll wait. Read more »


May 04 2015

Age of Ultron Hard on Joss Whedon Because He Has a Family

Avengers: Age of Ultron ruled the box office this weekend. And before that, it ruled director Joss Whedon‘s life. This was, according to the director, difficult on him because he has a family. Here’s what he said in an interview:

English: Joss Whedon at the 2010 Comic Con in ...

English: Joss Whedon at the 2010 Comic Con in San Diego (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“When I watch it, I just see ‘flaw, flaw, flaw, compromise, laziness, mistake,’” said Whedon. “The reason I set out to make another film is because I wanted to make one that was better, and I wanted to up my game as a shooter and work harder on every aspect of it and sort of give myself up to it in a way that’s hard for me, because I have a family. I started as a writer in low-budget TV, and there was always this element of, ‘This is good enough.’ And with this movie, I never wanted to say, ‘This is good enough.’” (emphasis added)

And now the explanation. Read more »


Jun 24 2014

Forms, Forms, Everywhere The Forms

Forms, forms, and more forms. Parenting is all about the forms.

Maj. Gary Ruesch completes medical forms as hi...
Maj. Gary Ruesch completes medical forms as his patient draws. (Photo credit: Official U.S. Navy Imagery)

Not ALL. But there are a lot of forms.

(A note on the photo: isn’t it cute? It’s from here.)

School forms. Camp forms. Other forms. School and camp are the big ones. They won’t let your kid go to either place until you submit a medical form, which requires a visit to the doctor, which requires making an appointment to take your kid to the doctor. Not saying these are the hardest things a parent has to do. But it does require some scheduling.

I’m going to make a form to help parents with these forms. Sound a little meta? Perhaps. But I think it would help me, and if it helps someone else as well, that’s even better. Pay it forward and all that.

As usual, I barely have time to write this post before I need to do dad stuff. The form will come later. But I will do it. Hopefully.


Sep 22 2013

Should I Stop Holding Back?

Believe it or not, I hold back a lot. Should I stop? Is it time to to really tell the world (whoever is listening/reading) what I actually think?

DaddyTips—Thoughts on Dadding

Some have told me that no good will come of me expressing my views. Not that I’ve never expressed an opinion. I was particularly harsh to Lance Armstrong, but I felt that he deserved it. (Plus I was ahead of the curve on that story.)

Ultimately this is a parenting blog. It is called DaddyTips. The original idea was to offer, you know, tips. That isn’t always easy because a lot of parenting advice comes from my actual experiences as a father. Why is this an issue? Because I don’t like writing about my kids too much. I don’t use their names, I don’t post their photos, and I think they have a right to privacy.

Note: I know this isn’t what everyone does, and I respect people who make different decisions on this matter. Except for Jon Gosselin and Kate Gosselin. Them I find irritating and always did. Here’s the proof. Notice what I wrote at the end, that perhaps Jon could get a regular job. I wrote that in 2009. This has now happened.

And yes, quoting yourself is tacky but it makes fact-checking easier. I will keep writing that until somebody tells me to stop.

Anyway, back to the original topic of whether or not I should hold back. Someone suggested to me recently that they thought I was out of control. There’s a lot more to that story that I’m not going to share because it’s too personal and involves details I prefer not to discuss in public. I have always felt strongly that one way to avoid being “out of control” is to vent. Get it out. Rant, if that helps.

I don’t know. It’s difficult to decide.

Is there a tip here? There is. The tip is to consider whether or not sharing certain things on the Interwebs is good for you or for your kids. It might be. Or not. But like Dora says, let’s stop and think for a minute.


Aug 23 2013

Grah! I Am Not Getting Anything Done

I am not getting anything done. This is frustrating.

I don’t think I need a book like Organizing For Dummies. First, I’m not a dummy. Second, the issue isn’t organization. It’s time.

Yes, there’s a book for that too. And it can bite me. (Technically it can’t, unless it’s one of those books from Harry Potter. But I digress.)

The issue for me is not managing time properly. The issue is not having any time to manage.

Parenting, as I’ve said often, is not easy. Raising kids takes time. Some of the things that one must do when raising kids are things that can only be done if said kids leave you alone for awhile. My kids are great. But I’m the type of person who needs multiple minutes in a row in order to accomplish anything significant. Starting a task — even, say, writing a blog post — and then getting interrupted (not always by kids) can and does derail my activity. This isn’t the case for everyone, but it is for me.

Then there’s relaxation. Downtime is a requirement for parents. It took me awhile to realize this, but trust me, it’s true. While it is true that the children eventually go to sleep and I could use that time to do various tasks, that’s not always a good idea. Because a tired dad is a cranky dad, and a cranky dad is no fun for anyone.

Eventually the stuff that absolutely must be done will in fact be done. Because that’s the way it is. This is how we do it. Letting important things slide is not an option. Starting and stopping and getting stymied is still annoying.

Dadding ain’t easy. See also: SAHD WAHD. Then call me a wahhhbulance.


Jul 30 2013

Fear Of Not Waking Up On Time

Does anyone else have this? A fear of not waking up on time? I do.

At the moment I’m setting three alarms to ensure I get the hell out of bed in time to get people ready to go where they need to go. For some reason I’ve been more neurotic about waking up this summer than I have in previous years. Read more »


Jul 03 2012

Write Stuff Down Because You’ll Forget (Tips)

DaddyTips—Thoughts on Dadding

When a parent tells you to write stuff down, they could be talking about good old to-do lists. I do that constantly; I’m concerned that I’ll forget to do whatever it is I’m writing down, and also because I actually am likely to forget whatever it is unless I write it down. (Follow that?) In this case, I’m not speaking of to-do lists. I’m talking about about stuff you do with your kids. You should write it down because you will forget.

You may think that you’ll remember. After all, you’re not that old, right?  Read more »