Month: August 2005

Garside.com held hostage

For the last few years some dude who owns “Garside Property Managment” in Florida has owned Garside.com. I've emailed the dude over the years, but the emails always bounced. It came up for renewal in mid-August, and I was planning on buying it. However a cyber-squatter Seeq.com, which is part of the BuyDomains.com umbrella of companies bought it instead.

Last week I emailed to inquire how much they wanted for the domain. On Tuesday I got my answer.

$9,000.00.

That's right, nine thousand bucks for a domain that means NOTHING to anyone without my particular last name.

I emailed the dude back laughing in his face and saying that I'd rather pay a lawyer nine grand than pay them one red cent. I'm looking into what kind of recourse I have with ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. For less than $2,000.00 I can file a petition with them and possibly win my domain.

Or I can just continue using Chronicology.com, which works pretty damn well in my opinion.

Freak Daddy is a daddy!

Congrats go out to “Big Daddy” Donnie (whom I affectionately refer to as Freakishly Tall Daddy…or Freak Daddy for short) and his wife Sarah on the birth of their little girl Natasha Alexis Venusina. Kaylin has already decided that she and Tasha will be best friends for life, and she pinkie swore on it with me earlier this morning.

Donnie and Sarah live just down the street, bringing the current newborn baby tally on Tansley to 3 in the last month. There must be something in the water here.

Donnie kept himself awake for something ridiculous like 48 hours after Tasha was born. I chided him and told him to get some sleep, but he just showered and went back for another hit of “baby” (the drug of choice of all new mom's and dad's).

Donnie outdid me with his blow by blow account of the birth of his daughter on his website when he wrote Say hello to Natasha Alexis Venusina…., of course he probably had a lot more to say since his birth was way more eventful than ours…just like Donnie to always want to out-do me. We have a quick, non-eventful 12 hour labour, he and Sarah just HAVE to do the crazy two day, insanely complicated thing. We go home a couple of hours after birth, Donnie just HAS to stay and crash on the hospital cot so that he can say to me; “Listen son, I slept on a hospital cot with my wife, what did you do? Go home and sleep on your comfortable bed? Who loves their wife more now?”.

Congrats to both of them, and here's to a speedy recovery for Sarah so that she can get home and rest in comfort.

Not my gumdrop button!

Very exciting news! This morning Kaylin lost her cord stump, and I'm pleased to report that from all appearances she has an innie! YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY! Special thanks go out to Maysoon who clamped the cord nice and tight to her belly, and who instructed me to cut very close to the clamp.

Kaylin actually slept mostly through the night last night, waking up for feedings every couple of hours, but only taking 15 minutes to get the food in before promptly falling back asleep.

We gave her a bath last night, which did not go over well (particularly the hair washing portion of the evening), but which may have worn her right down from the screaming.

Today we're going out for a little drive to learn more about latching, and to get a second garbage pail for stinky diapers. We're going to move to cotton once she's big enough for the ones we bought, but right now we're in Pampers Newborn Swaddlers.

Happy Birthday My Love (a letter from mommy)

Dear Kaylin, Who would have thought, at this time last week, that my world was not yet complete? It wasn't until 10:32pm, on Tuesday August 16th, that you came into our lives and changed us forever.

Mommy and daddy are so blessed to know you. This first week of your life has been inspiring. We cannot wait until we see your first smile, hear your first word, and watch your first step. But until then, my little bird, we will continue to cherish every little wiggle and wimper you make. You light up our nights and carry us through our tired days.

Kaylin, do you know how amazing your daddy is? Over the past exhausting week he has coached me though the 18 most difficult hours of my life, made me laugh like never before, and kept me fed and hydrated when I was too sore to go down the stairs. But most of all, he has loved you as I always knew he would love our baby – with the biggest heart and the strongest arms. He has changed more than his share of diapers and wiped away a lot of mommy's tears this week. And I know he has helped make you feel secure in your new world.

And do you know how wonderful all of our friends and family have been since you arrived? We've received so many wonderful messages of love and support – I know you would thank everyone personally if you could.

So happy one week birthday my love. Thank you for being you. Mommy loves you with all her heart and soul.

Love, mommy.

Kaylin’s big family weekend

This weekend Kaylin got to experience the “Parade of family” as Grandma and Grandpa Garside travelled from London, and Meme and Pepe Kish came all the way from Chatham. Auntie Sharon, Uncle Dennis, and Aunt Tina made special guest appearances to meet their newest niece as well.

Mommy and Daddy were outside visiting with next door neighbours Philip and Sharon and their two sons, when Grandma and Grandpa G rolled up. Grandma cooed with delight at Kaylin and Grandpa was pretty proud of his first grand child as well.

Grandma and Grandpa brought loads of treats for mommy and daddy, as well as some very nice gifts for Kaylin.

After a nice visit, Grandma and Grandpa left and Auntie Sharon, Meme and Pepe Kish all arrived. There was another round of “pass the baby” before they all settled in for dinner which Meme and Pepe had brought. After dinner, a pretty wiped out Kaylin needed to be taken upstairs for some alone time, and Meme and Pepe went to a nearby hotel for some rest.

The next afternon was Meme's birthday, so mommy and daddy printed out a picture and put it in a frame for Meme's birthday. Uncle Dennis and Aunt Tina came over just in time to help Kaylin change her diaper, and Uncle Dennis did his first ever diaper change! He handled Kaylin like a pro, and had no problems getting the new diaper on…something neither mommy nor daddy would be able to boast later in the day.

After a nice visit where Meme made daddy some lunch and helped to tidy up a bit, Meme, Pepe, Uncle Dennis and Aunt Tina all left.

Kaylin's getting a little bit spoiled as neighbours, and family continue to pour in gifts. She has gotten so many pretty little outfits from people that mommy and daddy have had to set aside a part of her closet for special outfits!

Neighbours Donny and Sarah came by for a visit early Sunday evening, bringing some delicious muffins, which daddy ravaged into on Monday morning.

After a really trying Friday, Kaylin started waking up for feedings much better, and on Saturday was pretty much eating regularly every two hours.

On Sunday Kaylin started eating like a champ, and after a very light Saturday, was filling up diapers like a pro. She pee'd on daddy during mid-change, and pooped on mommy in mid change, but a little dirty change table never killed anyone, so they all got through it.

Daddy went over to Donnie's to watch some Wrestling on Sunday night, and Mommy spent some time alone with Kaylin while daddy enjoyed some wrestling and missed her terribly the entire time, yelling at Matt Hardy that he could have been spending time with his little girl rather than seeing Matt Hardy on his back in the ring!

Monday morning Midwife Maysoon came by for another visit and weighed Kaylin, who has lost very little of her birth weight, and is doing incredibly well. Mommy and daddy were worried about Jaundice on Friday, but Kaylin has pinked right up and looks great now.

A wicked awesome social network

I just want to give a shout out to everyone who helped us out yesterday. It was day 3 and things were getting weird. From not waking up fully to weird things going on that we couldn't find in any book, our awesome group of friends helped us get through the wild and mysterious “third day of horror”.

Xanthe and Nikki helped us figure out some ways of waking the slug baby. Poor Kaylin kept on falling asleep mid-meal, and we were getting worried, and a little freaked out by the constant feed-wakeup-feed routine that we were getting into. She'd suck for a couple of seconds and then fall asleep. Suck, and fall asleep. We tried the doll's eyes method, the gettin' the baby nekkid method, and the foot stimulation methods, but she'd just close her little eyes and go back to sleep.

In the end it took a bath to get her fully awake so that she'd eat a decent amount, and since then she's been awesome, maybe she was just having the three day baby slugfest.

I called Dave and Joanne last night too, and while Jo was out, Dave and I had a great talk about how much your life changes. Six weeks ago if I had phoned Dave up asking about my wife's breasts he would have screamed “Crank Caller! Crank Caller” and immediately hung up on me, last night we chatted for half an hour about stuff that a few days ago was totally taboo.

Last night Kaylin and I threw an all nighter so that mommy could get some sleep. We stayed up and watched Assault on Precinct 13, American Chopper, and SmackDown. I got to feed Kaylin last night using the “cup method”, which was really cool. She was a little freaked out at first, but soon took to it and gulped it down. She then just lay there and stared at me for a while, which was just about the best thing I've ever experienced. Last time I was up until 5am I was engaging in an all night Halo 2 session on X-Box live…let me just say officially that it was nowhere near as satisfying as last night.

48 hours of Kaylin

It's been less than 48 hours since she came into our lives, and already Kaylin's a very important person in many people's lives. Mom and Dad K, as well as Mom and Dad G have called to congratulate Char and I, while aunts, uncles, friends and co-workers have all poured in emails, instant messenges, comments, and phone calls to find out how the three of us are doing. Things with a baby are different, but life is pretty good for all three of us on Tansley Crescent.

It sure is strange having a baby in the house, but it's cool how quickly you just know stuff. I haven't changed a diaper in years, but that one was quick. I've never taken care of a baby this little before, but that just came too. It's kind of cool how you can tell a lot of stuff, and a lot of other stuff you do with trial and error.

I'm a big reader of technical books. As early as Tuesday there were books on web design and CSS scattered throughout the house (More Eric Meyer on CSS is in the living room on the stool, while Bulletproof Web Design is on my office desktop right now). However since the baby I'm reading a ton of baby stuff. Happiest Baby on the Block is awesome, we've referenced “What to expect in the first year” countless times, and we've leafed through this huge breast feeding book ad nauseum.

I've been trying to do as much as I can for Char since she was pretty much bedridden yesterday from exhaustion, but today she's taking over most of what I've been doing.

Last night I decided to take the baby into the office (with the futon pulled out and the baby bed next to me) so that Charlene could get some sleep, which really helped her out. Then she made me go to bed around 3 so that I wouldn’t become “Mr Crabby Britches, and I didn't get up again until almost 9!

The early part of night 1 sucked until I learned about gas. Then after several burpings etc, she went down for a snooze with her dad in the office so Mom could sleep.

Today has been more of the same, she's really calm, she's learned to latch really well, and she's getting tons to drink. We've had some good dad time, some good mom time, and some good mom and dad together time.

Char's feeling much better, although still pretty tired, and I'm in way better shape after quite a bit of sleep.

Kaylin's looking awesome today, her head has started to even out, and she's looking less like a cross between Winston Churchill and a frog, and more like the cute little Stinky Monkey she really is.

You can see more of Kaylin at the new photo gallery I just put up (yeah, I gotta admit Ryan and I have whipped up a wicked tool with the HeadsDown Content Manager…this thing is just so sweet! I can already see places where I'm gonna tweak it though…just need about 6 hours to do it…wonder if I could just forgoe sleep tonight and…nahh, better not.).

Kaylin Elizabeth arrives in style

On Tuesday August 16th at 10:32pm Kaylin Elizabeth Garside decided that she could wait no longer and made her presence known to the world.

The tale of the tape is an impressive one. Weighing in at 3754 grams, and measuring 53 centimeters in length (that’s 8lbs and 21inches to you imperial system folks), she bounded into her mom and dad’s lives full of the vigor of youth.

Mom did an amazing job, complaining at 4 in the morning of a few contractions, and deciding that she’d get rest while she could. By 7am she was having more intense, contractions. By 10:30 the contractions had become closer together, and when dad had monitored an hour of regular 5 minute contractions lasting between a minute and 1:45, he called the midwives. Their midwife Maysoon called back minutes later and asked to speak to mom, who between two contractions managed to give Maysoon better directions than Brian could ever hope to give. Maysoon arrived and quickly discovered that Charlene was nicely in active labour and they agreed to meet at Markham Stoffville hospital.

On the way, Brian made a wrong right turn that saw them see a few back roads they shouldn’t have.

At the hospital, Charlene opted against the epidural having been assured by Maysoon that she had gone past the most difficult part, and that an epidural would just slow things down. Charlene used nitrous oxide to relieve some of the pain, and things progressed quickly, with the added help of some quality time in the Jacuzzi.

Around 9pm Charlene started pushing, and by 10 Maysoon had called in a backup. At 10:30 after a final huge effort on Charlene’s part, Kaylin Elizabeth appeared to the world.

A proud Brian said “Forget comic books, my new favourite superhero is my wife. She’s an amazingly strong woman who got through one of life’s most incredible miracles with the strength of her own will. I love her with all my heart, and am so honoured that she chose me as her husband.”

“Kaylin will not be accepting dates from boys until her 21st birthday.” added her father.

Well wishes can be left at www.chronicology.com, where Kaylin’s story will be updated by her proud father.

Entertaining woes

…or why the movie industry is performing horribly this year. “The Media”, that nebulous, multi-headed beast is up in arms over the whopping 21% decline in year-over-year box office reciepts. Those in the know have blamed everything from piracy to poor product. Now though chicken little is sure to declare the sky is falling as BlockBuster reports that their year over year video rentals are falling as well.

Last year was a record high for the box office industry. There was an amazing array of solid product, with some of the best movies of the decade thus far coming out, from Lord of the Rings through Spider-Man 2, Fahrenheit 9/11 and the Passion, great movies were bringing people into the theatres all year long.

The marketing of these movies was also nearly perfect. Lead times were good, with the culmination of marketing campaigns falling right on the movie's opening and then trailing off after the movie was released. In comparison, this year all of the marketing seems to happen months in advance. I wanted to see War of the Worlds back in May when the early buzz was incredible. The Tom Cruise meltdown happened in mid June, and the movie didn't appear in theatres until July! Cruise's infamous meltdown on Oprah happened while Steven Speilberg was still putting the finishing touches on the film!

Imagine if the press junket happened the week of the film, instead of two or three weeks before.

We're an instant gratification society, and we want what we want right now. Tease us with a new movie, and we want it right then.

People I know think that The Dukes of Hazzard has already come and gone…it gets released this weekend! How's that for bad marketing?

Batman is one of the best superhero films of all time, yet it's doing better overseas than it did in North America. When you compare the marketing campaign of this movie to the campaign of the first Batman movie in 1989, there's no contest even. The first one was marketed so well that everyone HAD to go see that movie.

Movies used to be events, and when the video craze took off and home theatres became more affordable, the movie industry fought back with better screens, better theatres, and more choice.

10 years later and those theatres are starting to show their age. Refurbishments need to be made, digital projection needs to be invested in, and audiences need to be educated that a movie theatre is not their living room (so shut the hell up).

Home theatres are cheaper than ever. You can buy a DVD for the same price as two movie tickets. For a $2,000 investment, you can have a home theatre experience which is on par with, or better than a theatre experience. There needs to be a reason for us to leave our cocoons and enjoy a theatre (which is still how filmmakers envision their movies being seen).

The revolution is happening on TV right now, as years of crappy reality programming have given way to a rise in incredible dramatic production. Lost, 24, The Inside, and Alias are big budget movies produced on a weekly basis. Desperate Housewives, Boston Legal, Grey's Anatomy, and Las Vegas give us entertainment every week, and the reality series have been pared down to only the best with Survivor and The Amazing Race capturing audience attention. Reviews say that the competition will only increase in the fall with early favourites Prison Break, My Name is Earl, and Bones getting great reviews.

Gaming is becoming a bigger industry, as is the internet, with people's attention being taken away by new distractions. Movies have to work harder than ever to keep people coming back. We need new ideas, new technologies, and new directors. In short we need another revolution like we had in the 90's when the Quentin Tarantino's, Kevin Smith's and PT Anderson's of the world were introduced to us.

All is not lost though, there are smatterings of brilliant ideas out there, and Richard Kelly (of Donnie Darko fame) has a new film coming out next summer which is already spreading the viral seeds. Southland Tales has a website already which looks interesting, and has opened sites up for Sarah Michelle Gellar's character of Krysta Now has a website, while what is apparently q company in the film named Treer Products also has an official site, and another site which is referenced in the official site has been created for USIdent. If Kelly uses the web for this movie the same way he did for Donnie Darko, then this could be very interesting indeed.