Monday, January 30, 2012

Hello, it's me. I've thought about us for a long, long time

So much going on this time.  Had a pretty awesome time at the Akron Public Schools Science Fair this weekend.  Had a pretty popular booth.  Wanna see it?  Here you go:
Ryan and Asher stopped by about halfway through and helped me out, and also browsed the science fair.  I was a little reluctant to go but I'm glad I did.  Everyone seemed really interested in water and what we do here, and that makes me pretty happy. 

We also went and saw this really awesome presentation that some 8th grade students from Akron did on water, they had come here to do their research.  It was so good!  It's a good feeling to know that you know that what you do is important and that people, especially young people, care enough about it to find out. 

Sunday was much more relaxed.  Tried webcamming with the CA folks but that didn't go too great, neither of our children seemed interested in talking so it was short and sweet, but nice to talk to them nonetheless. 

Ry and I are still at an impasse on names for this baby.  It's so hard to name a person!

I've been feeling a little down about my relationship with my family lately.  I feel that my mother's constant negativity and just general 'debbie downerism' is really starting to get to me.  Why do I feel that I need my mother's approval still?  I don't know, it's beyond me why I care.  But I do.  Anyway, it's nothing major, just something that's been on my mind lately. 

Leaving for CA in less than three weeks.  The countdown is on!  I'm really looking forward to it.  It'll be nice to go and chill with the Morrisons for a bit, it's so hard to do that when they are here because they have so much family stuff going on for them. 

As for new years resolutions, taking asher to the park for January...check.  I didn't teach him anything about nature, per se, but we did go sledding so that was pretty awesome.  And naturetastic, right?  I think it counts. 

Anyway, this post has been kinda rambly.  I should probably wrap it up.  

Monday, January 23, 2012

Non stop fun weekend...I'm still tired.

So, this weekend was filled with fun and excitment, at least if you are nerd family like us.  So, I'm guessing, since you are reading this, you probably are.  First off, this weekend was the 37th annual Scienc Fiction Movie Marathon at Case Western Reserve University.  Wow, that's a mouthful of typing. My first marathon was #25, if that tells you how old I am getting.  I haven't missed a marathon yet, but I had to leave a few and had to miss some movies here and there (having a baby and once I had a job interview and once I had to take the shig home because he had the stomach flu).  This was Ryan's 17th marathon.  That's impressive. 

Anyway, I didn't go to the whole marathon this year, I have been having bad tummy troubles with this baby so I stayed home with Asher on Friday and went all day Saturday.  The marathon was great and I had a lot of fun.  The parking situation was about a mile away from the auditorium this year but...the weather was actually okay this year (for the first time in years this wasn't the coldest weekend of the year) and so the walk wasn't too bad.  But, due to the walk, no one left for food this year, and that was different but not bad. 

Also, I ate a fruit leather that technically didn't expire until 2043, although all the rest in the package expired next year.  I think that it's a sign.  What, you don't believe me?  Here's your proof:
Yeah, that's what I thought! 

So, we had a good time with that.  I am excited for the day when Asher is old enough to go with us.  I hope he likes it and doesn't think it's lame.  I mean, he probably will when he's a teenager, because all teenagers think the stuff their parents like is lame, but what can you do?
Due to a little bit of guilt and a whole lot of excitement over having gotten season passes from the inlaws for Christmas we decided we would go to the new Greater Cleveland Aquarium on Sunday.  

We were aiming to get there right at 10 when they opened since this would be only the second day they had been open ever, and we figured they'd be packed.  But...we forgot about little gym, which starts at 9:15 am.  So, we got to little gym in just the nick of time.  It was Asher's mid year showcase where pretty much everyone comes and the room is super packed with people who don't always come to class and they do a refresher course of all of the stuff they have learned so far this year.  Here's some photos of Asher doing his professional level bear crawls.  I think they are his favorite thing to do at little gym.  

After little gym and a minor melt down about leaving little gym we got on our way to the Aquarium.  It's a little difficult to find since the bridge that google maps told us to take had a road closed sign on it and we had to go the long way around but...we found it.  I think it sucks you have to pay $5 for parking even if you have a season pass.  That is a bit of a should at least get a parking discount...

It's in the old Powerhouse, which is a pretty cool building on it's own.  Theyd did a really cool job of transforming it into an aquarium, I mean, before it was an all male review, which can be classy as well, but I don't know that you'd want that many toddlers in the all male review. 
I want you to keep in mind, I would have lost my child if I had tried to take photos there, so all the pics I'm posting are from the Cleveland Insider's website.  Thanks guys!  Really, I think everyone should go and see it, though I'd suggest waiting a little while so that the masses can move through and you can enjoy it at your leisure.  It's hard to take things in pace when there are a million people everywhere kind of pushing the pace for you.  So, just my highlights...

I really liked the accordian guy who seemed to hang out in the arched tunnels (Which were super cool but kinda creepy at the same time) and the costal room.  Here's a photo of the coastal room:

Although when we were there there was only one girl and she was overwhelmed and didn't have time to really educate people on what animals she was putting in the boxes for us to touch (those yellow ones).  The lady beside me picked up a sea cucumber, took it out of the water and squeezed the bejezus out of it, so that water squirted out of both ends.  I told her that that was a living creature and she freaked out and put it back.

They also had a big section dedicated to local fish, rivers, streams, Lake Erie, it was pretty cool.  A lot of the aquarium wasn't finished yet, though, with missing fish, plants, plaques telling you about the fish, that kind of stuff.  But I can only expect it will get better. 

The last part of the aquarium is the huge walk underneath it shark tank.  Here's a photo, once again, not mine.
It was pretty cool but it made me a little dizzy, maybe the length combined with the amount of people there?  I don't know...Still, pretty cool. 

This is a smaller aquarium than some of the other ones that I've been to, but it's a good aquarium and I hope that it does well here.  I know we will go back again.  :)

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Land Shark.  This is what we do in our spare time at work.  Actually, it's the first time we did it.  But we will do it again.  Land Shark waits patiently to ambush unsuspecting operators.  I'd like to say we did this in honor of the Cleveland Aquarium opening this weekend is merely coincidence.  Anyway, I hope this video works.  If not here's a photo.  It's less entertaining but you'll get the idea.

Can anyone tell me what I'm doing wrong when I try to pull my videos off of my google+ account to here and why it never works?  I really don't get it....

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Fritz Haber

Clara’s thoughts were in shambles. She had read in the papers what her husband had done. The national war hero he’d become, a chemist making his own rules in the face of adversity. In all honest accounts he had won the battle and defeated Germany’s enemies, those ruthless and horrible and vile men. Those men, who according to the same papers touting her husband’s heroism, were less than men, who would sack a village, rape the women, murder the children and then burn the houses to the ground. These beasts, they were the very threat to everything that was civilized and right in modern Germany. But now, thanks to her husband, her beloved, these men were dead, choked and strangled to death in the worst way possible, drowning on land in a sea of their own bodily fluids. And her husband was responsible. He loosened the valves. He measured the dose and studied the wind and calculated the exact moment in which to release the green wall of gas that would kill everything it encountered, long after the enemy soldiers were convulsing and foaming yellow-green froth from their noses and mouths. He was the savior of the German people, the man who would turn the tide of the war in Germany’s favor. Her beloved, ihren geliebten.

To her, though, she could not feel that he was a hero. She could not stand behind this…this atrocity of warfare. She knew war wasn’t pretty or fair or just. But this desolation of humanity she could not ignore. As scientists they had a moral obligation to help humanity, she knew that and thought he had understood it, too. But perhaps he never had. Science should never be used to do what her husband had done. She just couldn’t bear to live with it.

By the time her husband had been home for an entire day the peacefulness of her house was gone, replaced with well wishers and taggers-on and reporters and all other sorts of people who are attracted to a war hero when he visits home. Freshly adorned with his new pins and medals upon his new uniform he strutted and sauntered around the house, visiting with this reporter and that government official. His new promotion had brought prestige to her and her son, as well. She had had no shortage of visitors to talk to her, Mrs. War Hero, asking stupid questions about what it’s like to be married to such a great man and how proud she was of him. Lies streamed through her teeth at the expense of her pride and her morality. Every lie she uttered brought her despair that much closer to the brink.

The second morning of his return home she had a few moments with him, their first few private moments since he’d come through the door and kissed her on the forehead. Sitting at the table over toast and black tea, they stared at each other, neither really knowing what to say. Finally, Clara broke the silence.

“Mien geliebten, this thing that you have done, you cannot do again. You must know that.”

He seemed genuinely surprised at her statement. He placed his tea cup on the table before he spoke. Excitement filled his voice. “Clara, you know I must! This victory is going to turn the war in Germany’s favor. It will win it for us. As it should be. Where is your love for your motherland?”

She couldn’t help it, her eyes teared up. “What you did is wrong and you know it. I know it. Everyone of those grieving families knows it! Science should be used for good and you have turned it into a tool for fear and death. I cannot stand by and watch you do it again, I just cannot.” She turned her face away, ashamed of her tears and unable to convey herself fully.

When he spoke again she could tell he would not listen to her, would not be convinced or swayed by her words. “Mein geliebten, I am a hero. And you sit here and call me Cain? I have a duty to my motherland, my country, to protect and serve. And I will do so as long as I can. Why do you not understand how important this is? How much I’ve accomplished?”

“You can hide behind your shiny badges and your promotion and starched uniform and your sense of duty but you can’t hide from the truth. This is wrong. All of it. And you know it. And I know it. And one day, mein geliebten, you will have to pay for it. Please…” She broke down, sobbing now. “Please…just…I don’t know…just stop. Don’t go back. Don’t do it again. Please…”

He sighed in resignation and without another word on the topic, without another glance at her got up from the table and put his dishes in the basin. He pushed his chair in and walked out of the room, leaving her sobbing in her hands quietly above her tea.

Her grief was overwhelming, her despair growing heavier in her chest as the time passed. Slowly, ever so slowly she stopped crying and went up to her bedroom. Their bedroom. His old pistol, the one from before he was a war hero, was in the closet in a small box. She took it out and looked at it. It was dull and worn, and it felt right in her hand. She put the box away and before she realized it, she found herself in the back garden. Her husband was in the house, talking to some important nobody, too busy to bother with morality.

The garden was nice. It felt comforting, being surrounded by her bluebells and daisies and roses. The sun was midway across the sky when she put the barrel of the gun to her chest and pulled the trigger. The shot pushed her backwards but she felt no pain, not at first. The air was gone from her chest and she struggled to breathe. A moment later the men in the house ran out, her husband and some nobody and her 13 year old son. Her grief grew, her poor son, her boy. What had she done? But it was too late. Her son ran to her body, tears already streaming down his puerile face. He grabbed her up into his arms, sobbing and screaming at the same time.

Her husband looked on from the stoop. A look of horror crossed his face and then he went back into the house, leaving her alone with Mr. Nobody and her son. Eventually Mr. Nobody went back into the house as well, leaving her son alone with her dying body. As the life flowed out of her and into her daisy flowerbed her son wailed and yelled at the world.

Her husband packed a few of his items later that afternoon and left before sunset, returning to the warfront, without saying a word to his son.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Maybe I need some rehab, or maybe just need some sleep

Still no luck with resolutions for this year.  I want to do something I know I won't automatically fail by April (or after the baby comes) so it's hard to find.  Also, I didn't want to use the internets to tell me what I should do...but now I'm going to have to, I mean, it's already January 9th and I am at a loss. 

After looking at the internet, I still have no motivation.  Not even any good google suggestions.  Maybe I just don't know the right questions to ask.  I guess I could always just pick something arbitrary and hard to prove if I failed or if I kept it, like eating healthier or spending more time with my family.  I mean, prove to me that I didn't do those things.  You can't.  Or you can try but I can deny it.  Either way it's the same thing.

Hmm...well, here are some goals for 2012 for me, in no particular order, that I just made up right now

  1. Eat healthier (lame, I know, but what the heck, may as well add it on there).
  2. Be a more patient and understanding mother. I will refrain from saying why this is on the list at this point in time.   You can decide whatever you'd like as to why it's on here.
  3. Lose the baby weight when the time comes.  (you know, after the baby come out)
  4. Take my kids out on a hike or to a park (without a playground) at least once a month and teach them something new on each trip (at least Asher, I don't know how receptive baby #2 will be right off to learning what flower names are or what kind of animal buries nuts).
That's all I got.  I think that list is pretty OK, now that I look at it. 

Also, I'm going to try to do some creative writing here and there and post it here as well.  Sorry in advance if it sucks, but this is my blog so who cares, right? 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

And another one's down...another one bites the dust

Hello new year.  Good bye old year.  2012...I honestly can say I didn't really imagine it would be like this.  Also, and I guess this is because I am a woman of short sight or something, I didn't really imagine living in 2012.  I mean, I knew it would happen eventually, I just didn't really think about it until it was here.  Like, when I was 15 I wasn't thinking, "man, I can't wait to be 30 in the year 2012.  My flying car and nanobots will be super awesome.  Fuck that, by then I should have the neural implants to give me the ability to fly.  I'll be flying, I won't even need a car.  Except in the winter.  I'm not flying in that shit."

But here we are.  After a completely uneventful NYE (google+ hung out with the Morrisons, put Asher to bed by 9:30, stayed up watching American Horror Story until 11:00 and went to bed) and an even more uneventful NYD (we did pretty much nothing at all and loved it) I feel that we are in need of some excitement and adventure.  But not the bad kind.  I'm thinking...well, something.  I don't know.

I'm also thinking about new years resolutions.  I haven't picked one yet but I will.  I think I did okay on last year's, I mean, I'm still writing this blog so that has to say something, right? 

BTW, I really liked American Horror Story...until the last episode, which was stupid and shark-jumpy and way too sappy.  Fuck that shit, fuck happy endings of a sort. We started watching Grimm...not sure if I like it or not yet. 

Would you get the first run of neural implants if they were free, and in the future they would cost you a ridiculous amount of money?