Friday, February 25, 2005

We're Big Band-Wagoners

According to, the names Sofia and Sophia shot up in popularity since the year 2000. Like shot right the hell up. Crazy up. Because of Sofia Coppola, maybe? Hey, who wouldn't want their daughter to turn out like Sofia Coppola? And we thought we were so different and cutting edge; we thought the name Sofia would stand out. Turns out it's the "Sarah" of the new millenium.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Literary Backscratching

Neil Plakcy gave me a good review and linked to so it's time for some quid pro quo. His novel's been published by a real actual publisher, unlike yours truly. Or - will be published - according to Amazon it's not out yet. The book, Mahu, is the best gay detective novel I've ever read. Okay, it's the only gay detective novel I've ever read, but it's good. It starts with a bang, when the still-closeted detective violates his own principles because he doesn't want to be outed, and as it goes it smashes the Will & Grace stereotypes of what gay guys are supposed to be like. Here's his website:


So we're not supposed to microwave formula. Both Dr. Spock and Tracy Hogg say it doesn't matter anyway - "studies have shown" that infants have no preference between warm and cold formula. Well, all I can say, is that Sofi was more and more reluctant to take the bottle. (See previous post about feeding her in the bathroom because of its calming influence.) Then I started nuking her formula. Now it's easy. (In fact, I was able to watch multiple episodes of The Tick--illegally downloaded, since that's the only way you can get access to the glory that is The Tick--"Where, *indeed?*"--while feeding her over the last couple of days.)

Of course, to be truly scientific, I'd have to do the double-baseline: skip the nuking and see if she goes back to her crying ways. But once I've got something that works I'm loath to fuck with it.

But hey, I take precautions:
* 4 oz of formula get 20 seconds of nuking.
* Nipple off while nuking so no pressure builds.
* Shake after nuking to make sure there are no hotspots.
* Test on my wrist - after 20 seconds, it still feels cool, but not cold.

Friday, February 18, 2005

How's She Doing?

If anybody's wondering what happened while we were at the doctor's office instead of the playdate, Doctor D. thinks everything's fine and suggested that Cathy stop eating chocolate. (Ouch.) But then Sofi coughed. So we took her to get her chest x-rayed. And Dr. D. looked at the x-ray. And everything's still fine. We're all fine here. How are you?

Shower Curtain

Sofi loves the shower curtain in our bathroom. It's white, with black abstract near-stick-figure animals printed on it. Every fifth animal so is boldly filled in with a near primary color. I think Sofi also likes the loud hum of the bathroom fans. Point being, if she's crying, carrying her into the bathroom is a near-miraculous way to calm her. In fact, yesterday, I discovered that it's easier to feed her the bottle (she's coming to hate bottle feedings...and she used to be so good about them...) if I do it sitting on the toilet with her in my lap, looking at the pretty curtain.
Maybe when she grows up bathrooms will give her mysterious comfort and she won't even know why...
Unless she reads this blog, anyhow.

Thursday, February 17, 2005


My chess ranking is coming back to where it was.
I'm not sure if this is because I'm getting my mind back, or if - like someone recovering from a stroke - I'm just compensating for the damage.

Monday, February 14, 2005


Sofi smiles when I bicycle her legs; she also smiles when I act like a retard. Am I manipulating her or is she manipulating me? ("Act like a retard and I'll smile for you, dad!") She learned to shriek a week or so ago: there is no withstanding the awesome power.
Getting used to the idea of being the #2 parent. If Sofi had a sibling I'd never admit to them that I had a favorite; Sofi can't even speak and she's already made it clear that mom's number one around here.
This made me day, though: somebody I don't even know gave my novel a five star review. "If I can reach just one person it's worth it." Well, no, not really. But it helps.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

I'm The First Person In History To Try California Paid Family Leave

Or at least that's what it seems like - I took six weeks off of work, with the understanding that the government would reimburse me for half of my salary during that time. That's how Activision's HR department explained it to me, anyhow. Actually trying to collect on this seems to be impossible: they need the birth certificate, which the City of Los Angeles won't give me for another three months, or the "Hospital Birth Record", a document that Cedars-Sinai seems to have never heard of. And if I don't have this paperwork to them soon, they will deny my claim, although later I will apparently be able to appeal that denial.
Even though Sofi has medical insurance and a social security card, the Paid Family Leave people don't believe she exists.
On the bright side, the guy at Paid Family Leave who explained to me that they can't pay me, he has a very nice telephone manner. His name's Richard. Hey, he doesn't set the policy.