Drunk dialing the dog…

Last night, my wife and I went out for Mexican food. I had a couple margaritas. On the way home, with her driving, I just happened to glance at the screen of her in-dash monitor that was displaying a split-screen of the map on the right, and the Bluetooth auto phone number list on the left. The first number on the phone list was ‘Home’.

And then it hit me. Sitting at home, hopefully not getting into any trouble, were our dog, Shiloh, and my wife’s aunt and uncle’s dog, Riley, patiently waiting for us to come back.

And it struck me that it would be pretty funny to call the house phone and use the answering machine to leave them a message… which they would be able to hear live as it recorded.

I mean, think of how you could mess with your dog.


“Who want’s peanut butter?”


“Let’s go for a walk, who want’s to go for a walk?”

“Good dog! Let’s get you a treat.”

That would be worth getting one of those security video cameras installed just to see what the dogs would be doing…

I didn’t really end up doing it. It would be mean. But it is still kind of a funny idea.

Posted in dogs and other animals, thinking about stuff | Tagged , , , , , | 18 Comments

Pouring my art out… getting back to the basics… and a chance for you to name my new robot buddy…

I have been posting pictures of my travels so much lately that this blog has turned into something other than what it used to be. But now I am all caught up… and it is going to get weird and artsy and poury all up in here.

My daughter and my wife flew home early and I had three extra days at my mom’s house in the Bay Area. The crack squirrels were going nuts! You might remember that I did a post about all the stuff I was doing.

I read through the first copy of my new book… book 3 of the Otherwhere Chronicles. (The first two books of this hilarious and action-packed series are available on my book page, which you can get to by clicking on the pictures of the books over there in my sidebar… just sayin’)… I just this morning emailed the few small changes that need to be made to my older daughter, Jessica, who is my tech expert on formatting the books for publishing. Then that book is going to be available too.

I also am working on another children’s book, but I will get to that later.

But here is a new twist… I am writing a novel… aimed at teenage girls. Hey, don’t try to make this weird. Jessica is always challenging me to try writing new kinds of stuff. She encouraged me to write the murder mystery set in World War Two London that is being edited as we speak by my head blog minion, Mr. Trent Lewin. (Hi Trent, get back to work, or no minion chow for you!)… and as Jessica points out, I raised two awesome daughters as a house daddy… before it was even cool to be one… and most of my best friends have always been female. So I am digging deep into the female side… the better side… of my artistic soul.

Here’s the thing… and this is just one of those things I like to do to challenge  myself… but, unlike my sci-fi books, which I force myself to write without any pre-planning at all… (I just let me get myself into tricky situations and then try to figure out how to get out of them)… I am planning this one out in advance. I mean really planning.

Here is a glimpse into the creative process for this new novel, which I hope will break the barriers that Disney has set up around the whole ‘Princess’ genre…

a 3Oh yeah… storyboards, character sheets with descriptions and motivations and details, notes, sketches and maps of who is going where and why and what they did and what they are going to do… all laid out on my mom’s piano. I even, since I had the watercolor paints out to do some more artwork for my next children’s book, did a hand drawn and painted map of the fictitious world the story takes place in.

This novel is going to take the princesses back from Disney. This ain’t a book aimed at 7-year-olds. This is Disney princesses meets the Hunger Games… only without kids fighting to the death as entertainment. I am talking kick-ass teen princesses who become pirates in order to rebel against the evil empire taking over their world.

One last bit of art to pour out, and it isn’t mine. Remember all those hand-made robots that Jessica made for Willie’s third birthday party? Here is the one I adopted.

a 2I love that little guy. And I am giving you all a chance to come up with a name for him.

Posted in My art, Stories of my life | Tagged , , , , , , | 18 Comments

sunsets and crack squirrels…

a 1When I was at my mom’s house in the Bay Area, I went down to that place by the bay where people walk their dogs… because I was missing my dog.

a 2I didn’t, for a change, get any good pictures of the dog friends I made that day…

a 3But I did take this series of pictures of the sun playing hide-and-seek behind the low clouds… or high fog… whichever…

a 4

Photos never really capture nature adequately, do they?

a 5I also took some sunset photos from my mom’s deck… stupid power lines…

a 6Well, I zoomed in on that one and cropped it, so that is a little better.

a 7But then you miss so much of the sky. I do like the way the sun is lighting the edge of the clouds… or fog…

a 8And I spotted one of my squirrels, the crack squirrels that live inside my head…

a 9He decided to go AWOL for a while and steal some of the cat’s food.

a 10I also, as usual, saw deer, raccoons and turkeys, but I didn’t really get any good pictures for a change. Anyway, I am trying to do these posts quickly, because we are about to get all weird and artsy up in this thing!

Posted in dogs and other animals, My travels, Stories of my life, sunsets | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Flowers in my mom’s garden…


Posted in flowers, My travels, Stories of my life | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

Too much cuteness in one post… more pictures from our trip to the Bay Area…

a 1This post contains pictures of three adorable children… and me!

a 2Some of you may remember a couple of weeks ago when I posted about meeting a new baby friend. This is that baby. I met him at Willie’s birthday party. We seriously bonded.

a 3I ended up sitting on the grass cradling him on my lap for like 40 minutes, and he was staring at me and talking to me. His mom said she had never seen him act like that with anybody but her and his brother.

a 4Remember… don’t trust people if babies, dogs and horses don’t like them. And yes, I know I need a haircut… don’t worry… I got one yesterday.

a 7And here are a couple more pictures of Willie in that awesome fireman’s outfit we got him for his birthday.

a 6The kid knows how to play fireman.

a 8And, as if that wasn’t enough cuteness for one post, we also saw my little cousin, Clark.

a 9You might remember him from the time I took all those epic pictures of the California coast, after spending the night with this little guy and his parents in Santa Cruz.

a 10That’s his mom… my cousin… one of my all time favorite cousins!!!

a 11And there is the whole family. They drove up to my mom’s house to spend the day with us.

a 13awwwwwwww… Look at that little face.

a 14See, this really was almost too much cuteness for one post.


Posted in My travels, Pictures of me, Stories of my life, Willie! | Tagged , , , , , | 22 Comments

Uh… people… we now have one post that has 44,001 comments… or maybe 44,002, since I answer every single comment I get on that post… and I answered the one that told me we have 44,001… so… uh… yeah…

If you are new around here and haven’t commented on our record-breaking post, you really should. You will become a part of history. You can find it right over there… on the right… in my sidebar… at the top… with a link directly to the post.

While you are there, feel free to make random silly comments to some of the coolest bloggers in the world. You might make some new friends… and put us a little closer to the magic 50,000… HA! Or just say hi in the comment box… it’s all good…

Seriously, people, we did this together… is it almost time for another drunken weekend-long reunion party on the comment post?

Posted in stuff about blogging | Tagged , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Want to see some photos of a handsome young fireman?

a 1Oh yeah, our godson, Willie, turned 3-years-old. And guess who got him that fireman’s outfit. We drove up North to be there. It was awesome. And this post is the least I can do after posting that naked picture of me in the last post… HA!

a 2The party was in a park in San Francisco, and Willie got his swing on!

a 3Speaking of swings… seriously… do they make this one big enough for adults?

a 4The park was cool, hip and artsy… the way only Bay Area parks can be.

a 5Speaking of artsy, the party was a robot theme party… and Jessica, my older daughter, made all these robots by hand. How cool are my kids?

a 6She even made enough for most of the adults… the ones who wanted to… to adopt one as well. You know I adopted one. So did some of the other adults… the only kind of adults I have any kind of respect for…

a 7Eva, Willie’s mom, with some help from Willie, made this awesome robot big enough for the kids to get inside and have their pictures taken through that opening in the chest… torso… whatever…

a 8You gotta love that!

a 9There’s my little buddy, sitting on Grandma’s lap and having a healthy snack.

a 10

And now, stay tuned for some more awesome baby pictures.

Posted in My travels, Stories of my life, Willie! | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments