Obama's Nobel Peace Prize

“Conservatives say the award represents everything they stand against: black people, foreigners, and peace.” – Bill Maher


"St. Francis’s sermons to the animals must have really stuck, because our furry and feathered friends have at least one of those allegedly unique Christian virtues, according to Frans de Waal. His book, The Age of Empathy, describes “Bengal tigers that nurse piglets, bonopo apes that help wounded birds to fly, seals that rescue drowning dogs, [and] a rhesus monkey [that] will forego the opportunity for food if pulling the chain that delivers it will electrically shock a companion,” writes Andrew Stark in the Wall Street Journal. Humans’ far more complex moral sense is rooted in our self-awareness and the awareness of our place in a social order, but the evolution of that moral sense long predated Christianity."

- Heather Mac Donald at Secular Right


Song of the Day

Favorite Memo Ever

The attached link is for mature readers only, if you're easily offended or here for further updates on Cam's new baby (I'm specifically referring to you Great Auntie Mertle from Victoria by way of Amsterdam), please don't read it. This is not a link to baby photos! Thanks.

A precis of what you should find at this link:

South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut is a feature length movie based on the animated series, South Park. Prior to its release in 1999, the movie's creators - Matt Stone and Trey Parker - were asked repeatedly by the MPAA to alter the film in order for it to gain an R rating rather than an NC-17. The link is to memo sent by Stone to the MPAA, in response to such a request.

Enjoy, unless you are linking here thinking this is something else - in which case you only have yourself and your grade school english teacher to blame.

p.s. Speaking of baby pictures, Cam, were are they?


Hilton - Webb Update! A Father's Perspective

Hello everyone!

Just wanted to let everyone know that on Oct 3rd at 3:59am, Mairi Johannah Webb entered the world, and our hearts (and our kitchen!).

Mom and baby are doing great, Oliver is pleased (more or less) at having a little sister, and the four of us couldn't be happier!

So here's the thing; her name 'Mairi' rhymes with 'starry', and it's Gaelic. And no, neither Haidee nor I has any Gaelic in us, we just really liked the name and so we took it. We're just thieves that way. As for the last name being 'Webb', Haidee and I agreed when we started having kids that all the boys would be Hilton's, and all the girls would be Webb's. So in a way, Mairi brings some balance to the house. And in all probability - to the Force.

As for the kitchen birth thing, it was our intent all along to have Haidee labour in a large inflatable birthing pool at home to maximize her comfort, and to mimic the awesome experience she had with the labour of Oliver at BC Women's Hospital in Vancouver. One of Haidee's women folk friends had one of these labour pools, and were kind enough to lend it to us.

So at 3:00am I was woken up, informed by my wife that active labour was well underway and instructed to start filling the tub. Haidee's Mom began boiling water in pots and mixing it with cold in the sink to add to the tub as we quickly wiped out all the hot water we had in the hot water heater. With all the boiling water and towels, it was looking like we were prepping for our own little-house-on-the-prairie birth scene in our kitchen. Very old-school.

Just after 3:20 Haidee got in the tub, and expressed a concern that it may slow the labour down. We'll chalk that up to confused hormones and wishful thinking.

At 3:30 the doulas arrived. They are non-medical birthing attendants, and frankly were totally awesome, if actually helpful for only a few minutes.

At 3:40 Haidee's contractions are still 5 min or so apart, but getting stronger. When Oliver was born, this stage lasted for about 90 minutes.

At 3:45 one of the doulas calls 9-11 in anticipation that we will need a ride to the hospital. Many of us (mostly me) thought that this was premature.

At 3:59 exactly, Mairi arrived. Everyone was pretty surprised by this, though Haidee managed to be less surprised than the rest of us and caught her before she landed on the inflatable bottom of the pool.

Just after 4:00 the paramedics arrived, letting us know that there wasn't much help they could offer given all the work appeared to have already been done. They were pretty cool about helping me cut the cord though.

At about 4:10 we were all entertained for a solid 20 minutes as the two burly paramedics, and the two doulas used various kitchen utensils (my favourite popcorn bowl, etc) to try to locate and retrieve the placenta and remaining umbilical cord out of the bottom of the tub. You'll have to trust me on this, but it was past 4:00am, we were very tired, and this was even funnier than you think.

Anyway, after a visit to the hospital that included an interminable wait for some necessary shots, etc., Mom, Mairi, Oliver and I are all happy to be home and healthy.

Popcorn anyone?