Stay Cool Dad


Moving beyond ‘A series of tubes’ by Simon Sharwood
April 25, 2007, 11:01 pm
Filed under: Family, Off topic, but indulge me

A US senator once described the Internet as ‘A series of tubes.’

Well … over here we think that the Internet is a bundle of small pieces of woolen yarn.

Or so says my nearly three-year-old daughter, who spent much of yesterday shuffling the bundle around our couch, proclaiming ‘It’s my Internet.’

From the mouths of babes …

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Off topic, but why not by Simon Sharwood
February 21, 2007, 10:48 pm
Filed under: Off topic, but indulge me

Spinopsys nails it today with comments on the gridlock that paralysed Sydney when 200,000 people descended on the foreshore to watch some very large cruise ships. The resulting political storm has not been good for the governmen. But as Spinopsys writes …

I don’t think the State Govt. has anything to apologise for. It’s not their fault that the citizens of Sydney became a bunch of gawking hicks at the mere sight of a couple of royal canoes. Sydney as a cosmopolitan metropolis? I don’t think so.

I agree.



Kids change everything by Simon Sharwood
September 5, 2006, 10:07 am
Filed under: Just listened to ..., Off topic, but indulge me

I’m a huge Neal Stephenson fan.

So much so that I recently bought and read one of his minor novels, The Cobweb. There’s plenty of amusement in it, especially a passage in which the protagonist, who is tkaing care of his infant daughter alone, wonders why parenting books all offer diametrically opposed advice.

That’s a departure from the usual for Stephenson, thematically at least.

Anyway … I have since started to re-read his The Diamond Age, which I have not touched for years.

At the core of this excellent novel is a book intended to stimulate the minds of young girls.

Re-reading it as a parent I feel as if Stephenson imagined at least some of the tale out of a desire to explore his feelings about how to best help his kids get on in life.

That’s an odd thing for a cyberpunk author to do, you’d think.

But as my kids have quickly taught me, and this blog (I hope) demonstrates, kids change the way you think about everything …



The results by Simon Sharwood
July 11, 2006, 12:41 am
Filed under: Just listened to ..., Off topic, but indulge me

Here’s what we put up with while watching Planet Earth.

Why does a shark eat a seal?

Why is the elephant swimming?

Why are the birds flying?

Is that a shark?

Is that an elephant?

That’s a cheetah. Is that a cheetah?

No. That’s a snow leopard.

No it’s not, it’s a cheetah.

So there was some interest, but not much willingness to sit back and be awed by the planet. And there was quite a lot of parental hissing along the lines of “sit down and listen” which as ever did not get heeded at all.

A mixed result therefore, but not an unpredictable one.



Experiment by Simon Sharwood
July 8, 2006, 7:54 am
Filed under: Off topic, but indulge me

The ABC will tomorrow night screen the first episode of the BBC’s super-acclaimed nature doco Planet Earth.

We have invited our 4.5 year old son to watch it with us in the hope he is appropriately awed by the planet and its inhabitants and also to introduce him to what is traditionally a kid-friendly genre.

It’ll be interesting to see how he reacts, so expect reports on the success or otherwise of the experiment here.



Hurrah for Internet video by Simon Sharwood
March 15, 2006, 12:06 pm
Filed under: Off topic, but indulge me

Gosh I love the Net. It brought this into my life, which made me chuckle.

It also brought me an episode of a TV show from the USA that will not screen here for months. Sure I should have moral qualms, but the network that screens the show in question here has treated it so badly its execs deserve to be dropped to the bottom of the sea wearing only concrete boots. That’s all you need to figure out which show it is!

Anyway, one XVID codec later, I am in “I’m watching my favorite show at least six months early heaven!”

Hurrah for Internet video!