Archives For good people

Because my family and I are vacationing this week, I thought it would be good to open my blog up for some guest posts. As with most things in my life, I didn’t really plan this out in advance. In this case, at all. Michelle Woodman answered my desperate plea last minute call, and handily cranked out the following:

5 Ways Canada Is More Better Than America

Chad Jones is a bit of a pot-stirrer. Why else would he issue the following challenge on Twitter?

pot stirrer

Now generally I’m not much of a pot-stirrer. There are other people who have an innate ability for such things, and most everyone who knows me will tell you I am not in that category. Plus, as often happens when I’m put on the spot, I proceeded to draw a blank in terms of Canada’s awesomeness. Ask me in 24 hours and I’m sure I’ll have all kinds of wonderful reasons why Canada kicks the proverbial patootie of the United States. But as of right now?

Nada. Zip. Zilch.

Not helping the situation is seeing who else Chad issued his Twitter challenge to. These people are seriously funny. If you don’t believe me, check out their Twitter feeds and blogs. Now check out mine.

Point made, no?

But like a beaver knawing through a maple tree, I will not be deterred. So after much internet surfing and other acts of randomness, I have come up with the following list (make of it what you will):

Five Reasons Why Canada is Better Than the U.S.

1. Canada is officialy a bilingual country. Now as any high school graduate will tell you, taking high school French classes will not make you bilingual. But it will provide you with additional reading material in the morning as you persuse the ingredients list on the box of cereal.
2. Canada is hilarious. We produce comedians like Cuba produces cigars. And I’m not talking only about the comedians who have found fame and fortune south of the 49th parallel. Go to You Tube, type SCTV in the search field and pick a video. You’re welcome.
3. Canada celebrates Thanksgiving in October. This means we have plenty of time to get over our turkey hangovers (and get rid of the leftovers) before Christmas rolls around.
4. Canada is the birthplace of William Shatner. There are those who would say this is a dubious honour at best. But riddle me this: What would Spock have been without Captain Kirk? Just another green-blooded, know-it-all alien, that’s what. How boring.
5. Canada has more practical (and prettier) currency. Google may think Rome is the country of choice for pickpockets, but I dare say the United States is the unofficial pickpocket capital. With all that green, how can anyone tell how much money is in their wallet at a glance? In Canada, that’s not a problem. We will know in seconds if a brown $100 bill or a pink $50 bill is missing. It takes even less time if a pickpocket pilfers our loonies and toonies.

Michelle blogs regularly at This Time Around. She is (obviously) Canadian, works with children, and is wife to her awesome husband, Jeff. She is a blogging buddy I met through Bryan Allain’s Killer Tribes. Even though she may not think so, she’s a funny lady (though she has been known to watch Big Bang Theory on occasion). You can read more about Michelle here. Follow her on Twitter @crosscribe.

System administrators are an odd bunch. Often we interface with technology far better than we do with people. Rare is the sys admin who ably balances both people skills and technical savvy.


Though I haven’t met him in person, Ricky Anderson is one such person. He loves people, he loves tech, and is a wicked funny guy (and wicked smart, too–he routinely trounces me in Words With Friends), and a kindred soul.

Truly, a sense of humor is key in staying afloat in the demanding world of IT. As such, there are games we play with one another. One of those, that those of you in the blogosphere are familiar with, is “search bombing.” Search bombing is essentially stringing together a ridiculous Google/Bing/whatever search that points to a particular blogger’s site.

Ricky and I, being sys admins, haven’t search bombed each other–yet. But honestly, as IT guys, that’s kind of pedestrian. No, he started our “Sys Admin Games” by firing a WHOIS across my bow.

What’s a WHOIS? It’s a search for record containing ownership and/or administrative information for a particular domain. Thus, it caught me off-guard–for about, oh, point 03 nanoseconds–when Ricky hit me up with my domain information in a Words With Friends chat session. Then I got.

“You dog! You WHOISed me.”

“Darn you for making me seem less mysterious.”

I of course WHOISed him back, but his record is protected! So what to do, what to do?

Google was my friend here. I bided my time, endured several bitter defeats, and finally hit him up with his home address in chat.

“How did you get my address?”

“Ancient Chinese secret. Actually, it was Eric Schmidt and his Googles.”

Don’t worry, Ricky, your secret is safe with me. Besides, Taos* is a long ways to go for a joke.

Did you get the pizza I sent?

*Ricky doesn’t really live in Taos. DADT.

Peace out.

What are some online games you’ve played?


Today I have the great privilege to guest post for Jon Stolpe, of the eponymous Jon Stolpe Stretched. He’s been a reader here for sometime, was there for me when I went through a rough patch last fall, and subsequently asked me for a guest spot on how God has been stretching me.

What follows is an excerpt from what I call “The Status Quo is a No-Go:”

In many ways, I’m a great fan of the status quo. I’m happiest when things are copacetically homogenous. Or something like.

Yet over and against this is the old saw that “change is the only constant.” This is undoubtedly true. And for the Christian doubly so, because–as others have so eloquently said–“there’s no standing still in Christ.”

Yet, as a generally introverted person, a man of a certain age, with a wife, two children, and a demanding career, it’s nice when things stay the same for a season (or two, or three). However, over and against this attitude is a God who, through Jesus his son, loves me enough to not leave me as I am.

To read the rest, please click here to head over to Jon’s blog. While you’re there, I know he’d love it if you looked around, read some of his other posts, left a comment or two.

You can connect with Jon on his blog, or via Twitter @jonstolpe

'Pacifier anyone?' photo (c) 2011, Philipp Antar - license:

After reading Ricky’s post–“One Paci to Rule Them All”–yesterday, I was reminded of my own children, and their interest (or lack thereof) in their own respective pacifiers.

Thus, I give you “Paci Throwdown:”

When my son was one, he threw his paci down
Mom, not being ready, retrieved it with a frown

She popped it back in, and to her chagrin,

Back it went, down on the ground,

For five full minutes this went on,

Out! It popped, back in it went,
Until mother and child, both were spent,

But mom would not relent,

And in the end, she won:
Forcing that paci back on our son

And to my chagrin, you see,
He kept it til he was three

Would that were the end of the story:
My daughter, nary a paci will she use,
When asked, she has refused,
A thumb sucker, in all her glory


You can catch Ricky on his blog, Ricky Anderson Dot Net, or follow him on Twitter @Arthur2Sheds (though I’m told he only has one shed)

You see it there, right? Right there in the title of this post–“fiend.”

Who do I mean? Who is this “fiend?”

Bryan Allain.

What do I mean?

He did this to me:

This Bryan Allain.

That’s right–I play words with this fiend!

He’s cutthroat, he’s lean…

And he’s mean!

This Bryan Allain.

Play him yourself.

You’ll see what I mean!

(search for ‘bryanallain’)

*By the by, I’m given to understand that his last name is French Canadian, so one pronounces it “Eileen.” Or so I’m told. 😉