Boy eating ice cream before father swoops in to assist.
This has gone on long enough. Someday, I will remember to bring my own (sharp) knives to Spaghetti Factory.

Which reminds me: I have a suspicion that Lemony Snicket's Series of Unfortunate Events just might be the best series of books ever written, and believe me, I have read at least a billion books in my life so far. 

I am fighting, strongly, the urge to cheat on my children and read on ahead. Book 8, The Vile Village, is one of the best yet - what other pseudo-children's series can you think of where the protagonists engage in ongoing dialogue about the meaning of deus ex machina?

(Which is: a classic storytelling device in which a seemingly impossible situation is abruptly solved by the sudden appearance of a contrived plot device. Oh, our heroine is about to fall off a cliff. Oh no! But fortunately...that helicopter randomly flying by is able to rescue her. Catastrophe averted. Or: oh no! The hero's sword just broke and the evil ninjas are about to defeat him...but look! Someone left a flamethrower laying around, so looks like he's gonna make it agree all. Deus ex machina: "god in the machine." No matter how horrible the situation, you can always pull the puppet strings and write your way out of it.)

Brilliant, absolutely top-notch storytelling that is frequently so maddeningly hilarious that I start laughing and getting angry I didn't write it first. So, so good. For children, for adults, for everyone who appreciates adventure, witty humor, and sad endings.

2, ii.
Inexplicably, I love - LOVE - "The Ballad of Michael Valentino" by the Killers, off 2011's Sawdust.

I will love you no matter how old I am, even when I'm a hundred and three.
I told my son.

Well Daddy,
he said.
When you're a hundred and three then you might not look like my Daddy anymore.

I said.
When I'm a hundred and three, then you might be bald, and that would be funny.

He said. 
How does Hulk go to the bathroom? His bottom is too big to fit on the toilet.

I replied (an unnecessary preface),
That is probably the best question I've been asked all week.
And honestly, I do not know, but I want to know.

He said.
Me too.

We spent too much time discussing the Winter Olympics last month, as evidenced by the UNO game we played this week. First off, I am disgruntled because it was supposed to be a quick match; an obligatory game before launching into the cinematic delight of Scorcese's Hugo. Rather, this match reminded me of why I refuse to play Monopoly: this UNO game lasted hours.* At the end, there was a medal count, which I attempted to disrupt. My wife took the Gold, my son accidentally got Silver, and my daughter and I duked it out for Bronze. I refuse to disclose the final results, but let's just say if there were podiums, I would have been standing on the floor.

Total failure was averted by the killer playlist I soundtracked the match with, which I began before we begun:

Lana Del Rey
Eleanor Friedberger
Ennio Morricone
the Killers

I don't mind losing, I just don't like other people winning.

*seemed like hours

Happy weekend, all 



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