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Grab Bag | Who's Your Daddy? | giggle Blogs - Part 2

Archive: Grab Bag

October 4, 2010

A Hacker Is Born?

So the Little Man is now officially becoming a computer user and more importantly (and scarily) an internet user.  Me, being the always clever chap, decided we’ll limit that usage by using the standard password feature of Windows so he can’t access it without the password.  No Club Penguin or drooling over the Lego sets without some parental supervision. 

Naturally next time he wants to get on the information superhighway, he comes to me and asks what is wrong with the computer.  I explained to him the concept of a password as a key to lock things and that he’d need mom or dad unlock it to use the computer.  Of course, the normal protest stomps that follow every time the Paternal Dictator gives an unsatisfactory answer, but we all seemed on the same page. 

Fast forward a few days later and I walk in to find him using the computer.  When I inquire if his mother said it was ok and he said he was just checking on some new Lego set.  When I pressed on how he got on, he replied with an innocent smile, “I figured out the password, it was easy.  I tried my name, mom’s name then your name.  Now that I know it I can get on the computer without bothering you.”

September 26, 2010

Barcodes for Kids?

Everybody knows technology changes fast.  I feel like I’m somebody who generally keeps a pretty good handle on it, but sometimes you just can’t see it all coming.  The last five or ten years, we’ve seen things like RFID  become hip as chips have become smaller and cheaper.  So much so that you can implant one in your pet in case they get lost.  Great technology for pets, but not some much for kids. 

With the explosive growth of iPhones (and other smartphones with cameras), add “an app for that” and you’ve got millions of mobile scanners running around.  So that is why you might or might not have recently noticed strange looking square barcodes on various advertisements among other places.  Take that one step further and AT&T Wireless has given you the chance to create your own barcode with Create-a-Code , as I have done:

Scan this barcode.

You’ll have the get the AT&T Code Scanner App if you want to see where this one goes, but you can create a barcode that links to a website or that contains contact information.  Take that the next step and you’ve got kids running around with tattoos (or for the squeamish perhaps ID cards) that link to parent’s contact information.  Hey, I guess it’s better than implanting a chip in their leg, right?

September 24, 2010

Easy On The SweetFarts

Today’s Wall Street Journal has a great opinion piece by Thomas Spence titled “How to Raise Boys Who Read.”  I encourage anyone who reads this blog to click on over (after finishing reading this of course).  I won’t steal Mr. Spence’s thunder, but I have noticed the disturbing trend he speaks of in his piece.  As I kid (and I may be dating myself here) reading The Hardy Boys and being caught up by the books of Jack London, John Steinbeck and Ernest Hemingway (Old Man and The Sea in particular).  Now, when shopping for books for the Little Man we’re faced with choices like SweetFarts, Captain Underpants and SpongeBob Squarepants.  It is easier to find a cab in Manhattan on a rainy Friday night at 5 then it is to find any decent books for boys these days.  The article was like the alarm going off after hitting the snooze a few times and it is time to wake up.  The best intentions pave the roadstraight to SweetFarts.

September 15, 2010

Coffee With That?

The Little Man returned to school this week (technically last week, but in my book, school starting on a Wednesday and then a two day holiday doesn’t count) and that comes with all the usual back to school requirements.

• Emergency Contacts? Check.
• Afterschool Programs? Check.
• Back to School Night? Check.
• School Supplies List? Check-a-licious with a capital “F” footnote.

I share the same surprise as some of the parents in the New York Times article “Scissors, Glue, Pencils? Check. Cleaning Spray?” that our classroom supplies list felt a bit more like a school administrator shopping list.

All the list was missing was a corporate endorsement from Staples or Office Depot. “This years school supplies list brought to you by Staples, your number one source for buying all the stuff the school administrators need for their office that your kids will never use in their classroom.”

Now that the shock of this year has worn off, I’ll be ready for next year when the list includes coffee, a new scanner and a new basketball hoop for the yard.

August 31, 2010

Super Summer Videos

As the official end of summer is approaching, I think back on all the fun, silly and sometimes crazy moments from this summer.  While some of the moments have slipped by and I kick myself for missing them in all their glory, with my Flip in hand (sometimes in pocket) I’ve been lucky enough to capture some of those moments in all their digital video glory.  So now I’m hoping that some of you readers have also captured some of your own crazy summer kid moments.  I’m sure you’ve already shared them with friends, family and those people you kind of know that friend-ed you on Facebook. 

Now we want to see them!  So please, comment on this post and include a link to YouTube, Vidme or however you want to get your video to me.  If I get enough submissions, I’ll pick a few and include them in my next post.  So get your Flip out this weekend and let’s see what happens!

 And here is my personal leading contender for crazy summer fun:

August 12, 2010

Where Are All The People?

After far too long, Who’s Your Daddy is back for your reading pleasure (or as close as I can get). The Family has just returned from a journey to the left coast to celebrate the Little Man’s Great Grandma’s 100th birthday among other family visits, events and other shenanigans. In our travels, between field trips to show the Little Man a real burrito (sorry NY) and to In-N-Out, I tried to squeeze in a bit of work here and there, accompanied by my partner in crime.

On a deliciously cool and foggy morning in San Francisco, as we walked to our breakfast meeting (no joke, he had my back for this meeting), the Little Man had his best thinking man face on as he turned to me and asked, “Dad, where are all the people?” It took me a minute to catch on (it ususually does) and then I realized, this kid is a New Yorker now. He’s used to elbowing out touristos and hipsters for a seat on the subway at all hours, so the sight of a sidewalk with room to breathe was a curious sight indeed. After I explained the relative plethora of space in San Francisco (and almost any US city other than NY) he went back to pondering short stack or full stack.

With the fog a distant memory, we’re back in the Manhattan’s sticky delight. Heading off to a breakfast of bagels and OJ, the Little Man looked up at me with that smile that will melt a few hearts in years to come and stated, “Dad, I’m glad to see all the people again.” Buddy, I think they’re glad to see you too.

July 7, 2010

Nursery Design By You!

While the title of this blog post may lead you to think it should more appropriately be coming from our design Guru, David Netto over at his blog smartly titled Nursery Design, rest assured I’m not tackling any actual design topic.  This post is one for all you moms and dads that might like to see how different designs might look in your dream nursery or just play with cool online tools.  Our favorite prenatal and pregnancy site, The Cradle has partnered with Rooms By You to bring you the latest and greatest nursery design tool:

With the Design Your Nursery tool, you can customize home decor and bedding one product at a time or decorate your entire nursery with a simple drag & drop tool that anyone can use. You upload your own designs or choose from a huge number of big time designers latest creations.  You can also choose to start with one of hundreds of pre-designed rooms to give you some inspiration. 

If you love what you create, you can then order some or all of whatever fantastic designs you’ve created!  You can also share your designs with friends to see if they love your nursery as much as you or if you need a bit of a sanity check from the pink plaid nursery you’ve envisioned.

June 24, 2010

Private Video Sharing With Vidme

A smart kid (the Little Man) once told me that if you put it on the internet, it’s there forever and you can’t get it back.  So maybe you’re a bit hesitant to post photos or videos of your kids or with open access for the world to see.

If you do share some awesome moments, maybe you take steps to keep it a bit non-descript like posting only videos away from home without names like my semi-famous in my own mind “Over The Lake Man!” video of the Little Man.  Maybe you’re not worried at all and you’re like the iGeneration who wants to broadcast every photo, video and other detail of their lives.  If so, you can stop reading (but don’t).

Sites like YouTube or Vimeo have always been so “everyone” focused with people trying to gain fame and fortune.  Many of us would rather just share some of those classic kid moments with friends and family.  A new company wants to help.

Vidme a new site that instead focuses on private sharing with lots of easy controls to limit access so you might feel a little more comfortable uploading some classic moments and sharing with your preselected group (with no 25 person limit like YouTube).  So if you’d like to share some videos of the kids with friends and family, but not the world, you might check out Vidme, that for now is free.

Full Disclosure:  I have no relationship with Vidme and have received no compensation for this blog post.  Vidme doesn’t even know I exist.

June 21, 2010

Dirty Diaper App for Next Generation Diapers

Scientists at the University of California San Diego working on “smart underwear” are testing chemical sensors printed directly on the underwear that measure bio-markers found in sweat. These sensors will allow the “smart underwear” to monitor key chemicals found in the wearer’s sweat to administer medications automatically for soldiers in the field or for other, more close to home, applications?

I imagine a day in the not too distant future where a line of diapers that will have these electrodes built in and be linked to a “Dirty Diaper App” on your phone that will alert parents when a diaper change is needed. I can’t wait to see the Apple commercial for this app…

June 10, 2010

Words of Wisdom from Modern Family

So, if you’ve ever read this blog before, you know I’m a huge fan of ABC’s Modern Family. I often take some key parenting tips from the show.  So I thought it would be a good idea to share some fatherly words of wisdom from America’s best father, Phil Dunphy.   How could you not follow advice from this guy:

Without further delay, take it away Phil:

“You never want your kids to see you scared. You want to be that rock that they grab a hold of in a stormy sea. Actually, a rock would sink. So a floating rock.”

“Give a kid a bird and he becomes one of those weird dudes who walks around with a bird on his shoulder. But give him a pair of wings, he can fly… unless he has absolutely no hand-eye coordination.”

“I always felt bad for people with emotionally distant fathers; it turns out I’m one of them. It’s a miracle I didn’t end up a stripper.”

“I act like a parent and talk like a peer, I call it “peerenting.”"

“In nature, fathers are known to eat their young. Is it because they’re delicious? No. It’s because they want to give their female bear, giraffe, what have you, the honeymoon they never had. Just to be clear, I’m not condoning eating your kids – but I sure as heck know why giraffes do it.”

And of course one not parenting related but one my wife hears often:

“It’s just the beginning. Buckle your seatbelt, lady. You’re being wooed.”