Lil' Genghis, future world leader Lilypie Fifth Birthday tickers

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Feliz anno novo!

mom and dad would like to wish everyone a wonderful, safe and good New Year. It's been quite a year back at Chez Genghis.

One highlight for us and Lil' Genghis, of course, is the advent of Lil' Genghis herself. It's fun to look back at those early days, when we didn't know how big the Horde would be.

You guys, of course, were as right as wrong: 16 saying we'd have both a girl and a boy, 13 saying we'd have a boy, and 27 saying we'd have a girl. Some of these might have been late votes.

And who could forget our artist's impression of the very young world leader?

This year also marked Lil' Genghis' first trip to Brazil, leaving dad an opportunity to educate her on her second nationality.

Of course, we also witnessed the continued mental deterioration of mom as she started losing track of reality
, paired with dad's forgetfulness, too.

Not all went so well this year, and we need to be careful to remember all of Lil' Genghis' friends and family members who never got a chance to meet her: Great-Grandma
, Great-Grandpa Rinaldo, and even little Prozacinho.
When Lil' Genghis arrives later this year, they'll surely be looking down upon her and smiling, or maybe playing with a piece of string.


Thursday, December 28, 2006

Fotos o' fun!

Aunt Amanda shared her valuable photography skills with us, so we can bring some pictures from Christmas.

Here we see a big chunk of the family. From left to right, it's Great-Aunt Bea, Uncle Rodrigo, mom, Aunt Carol, Great-Uncle Johnny, Uncle Eddie, Aunt Amanda and Aunt Bruna, just showing a small slice of the family.

Yeah, mom's side is Catholic. Thanks for asking.

Here we see mom reclining with boydog after a long Christmas day. That empty bottle in front of her didn't play a role. She says.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Feliz natal!

So, in a two-bedroom apartment, we've had:

  • 2 dogs;
  • 12 people (counting Lil'Genghis);
  • 8 people sleeping here;
  • Food including an 8-pound ham, a 14-pound turkey, a big hunk of deliciously flavored pork, Portuguese french toast, Italian-style sweets, a big tray of apricot something-or-anothers, potato salad, several hunks of bread, stuffing, mashed potatoes, a selection of about 8 wines, 30 bottles of beer, cold apple cider, warm apple cider, orange juice, several kinds of soda, two kinds of milk, water, iced tea, and lots of other stuff;
  • and one bathroom.

    We all survived, and wish you all a Happy Hannukwanzumass! Pictures will hopefully follow.

  • Saturday, December 16, 2006

    Rest in peace

    Great-grandpa Rinaldo died a few hours ago, in much the same way as he lived: Spunky, strong, independent, stubborn and, yes, ironically, full of life.

    He was laying in the hospital bed, a breathing tube shoved down his throat, when he decided he had had enough of the thing. He removed it, himself, without anesthetic, without the sedation.

    Without, it turns out, the doctor's orders. Apparently this wasn't good for his health, but Great-grandpa Rinaldo preferred to do things his own way, on his own terms.

    mom and dad last saw him just a couple of months ago, when we borrowed some historic family photos that we wanted to make copies of. The front of one of these photos looks like this: On the back of the photo, from a younger Rinaldo, is a note from a young man courting a lady named Maria Helena.

    They were married 60 years.

    Thursday, December 14, 2006

    Racing characteristics of the pregnant woman

    In general terms, pregnancy plays utter havoc with the racing characteristics of the female form.

    For one, greater instability is added as the center of balance shifts forward of the centerline of the feet.

    Greater mass at medium altitude shifts the height of the center of gravity, making cornering more difficulty.

    The body itself increases in size, limiting clearance and thus increasing the distance needed for formerly tight turns.

    Internal changes, such as expanding tendons and widening hips, introduce greater slack into the system and thus decrease stability and control.

    Social changes are often associated with the physical changes as the pregnancy term extends and the racing ability decreases. We'd expect that the pregnant woman's partner would be more supportive and understanding, such that he would not try to get a dog to beat the pregnant woman to her side of the bed. And we'd expect the pregnant woman would realize she is no longer as capable of full-scale competition and would adjust her perspective of reality to avoid the toughest races.

    That all said, then, we'd hardly expect the pregnant woman to outrace the dog to the bed, and we'd really hope she wouldn't keep moving until she fell off the side of the bed, laughing all the way.

    In short, the offspring is just fine, but will almost certainly read this blog years later and ponder the beginnings of doubt in her mind: Just which parent was lacking more in maturity? Who was more fun?

    Tuesday, December 12, 2006

    Monitoring health

    mom was saying, "Everything is happening during my pregnancy!" Unfortunately, it's not all good.

    Great-grandpa Rinaldo took a turn for the worse today. He's expected to get better, but he's probably going to have to change his life a lot. He, like everyone else on both sides of Lil' Genghis' family, is ... obstinate. OK, just plain stubborn. Just like everyone else in the family, everyone.

    At some level, part of Great-grandpa Rinaldo is still very much the strapping young man in Brazil's army, ready to take on the world. He still jokes that the war ended because "they" knew he was coming for 'em. If he can keep that kind of humor and strength going strong, he'll get through this just fine.

    On an unrelated note, Grandpa John gave us a bunch of Christmas presents to monitor Lil' Genghis' health, mostly after birth. Still, we, er, did, er, unwrap, er, the stethoscope a little early to give the girl a listen. Squish squish squish -- pretty cool stuff. =)

    We should note that, as with any medical instrument, stethoscopes are to be used only by trained medical personnel in carefully controlled settings, or those who drop a few bucks to buy one. Well, OK, but it's better than toying around with an ultrasound endlessly.

    Monday, December 11, 2006

    Guide to Brazil (5): Crime

    When dad was growing up, he had a friend from Georgia. Thank God, the guy from Georgia said, for Alabama -- it made the poor, uneducated Georgia look good.

    So on that note, Brazilians could try to say, "Thank God for Baghdad" for making the homicide rates look better, but it maybe wouldn't be true.

    Brazilians can blame their crime problems on many factors, from the proximity to Argentina to the significant disparities in economics to corrupt politicians. All these factors have some merits, of course. But there's one thing Brazilians will never tell you is a major factor in crime in Brazil: Brazilians.

    It's never said by Brazilians that they are not only the major suppliers of victims to crime in Brazil, but also the largest instigators of crime. Is it because they're trying to hide, perhaps? Were there no Brazilians in Brazil, there'd be nearly no crime.

    The problems with Brazilians being the major source of crime in Brazil has been tacitly acknowledged. Brazil is home to about two dozen World Heritage Sites, but none may be more stunning than Ouro Preto, a city named for its gold.

    Now, gold took over Ouro Preto, to the point that the churches were involved in smuggling. Ouro Preto also became the home of the state capitol for a time, with the Legislature upstairs and the jail downstairs: Criminals, the joke goes, all in one spot.

    So Brazilians are familiar with their crime and its causes, but have a hard time confronting the fact that Brazilians are the reason there is so much crime in Brazil.

    So it's tough to tell Lil' Genghis, who will have both American and Brazilian citizenship, that her countrymen tend to cause so much crime in their countries.

    But ... what can we do? Facts are the facts. Even mom, a well-educated Brazilian who has lived in the United States for years, is still prone to criminal tendencies. Witness this:

    Here, we see mom trying to steal a mountain! Have the Brazilians no shame?

    It's a good thing that, as we all know, Americans can do no wrong.

    Saturday, December 09, 2006

    About the tickers

    In case anyone is wondering why baby's age and length in the two tickers we have on the page don't show the same information: the upper ticker shows Lil Genghis's length from head to toe, and the one on the right shows from head to bum. The upper ticker counts her age from the first day of mom's last period and the one on the right from the day of conception.

    America the beautiful

    This link here will introduce Lil' Genghis to all the reasons America is great. And by great, we mean grande.

    Thursday, December 07, 2006

    Guide to Brazil (4): Language

    Wired Magazine has this interesting story on using computers for translation, which outlines new efforts to make automatic translators suck less.

    Of course, any translation necessary loses some nuances, you know, the je ne sais quoi of the language. To that end, dad wants to offer Lil' Genghis a good starting point with Brazilian Portuguese, showing the original English, the appropriate Brazilian-Portuguese, and the translated-back-into-English Engrish.

    Let us begin.

    I am very appreciative of Brazilian culture.
    Eu desejo muitos mais geladas.
    Bring more beer.

    Could you point me toward the restroom?
    Eu tive quatorze cervejas.
    I had 14 beers.

    I would like to talk to someone in authority.

    I have been having a wonderful time and am enjoying my stay.
    Eu nao sei tudo das putas morto na casa.
    I don't know anything about the dead hookers in the house.

    I believe you could learn a lot from American culture.
    Meu nacao tenho armas nuclear.
    We have nuclear weapons. Back off, bud, we're better.

    I love your family's hospitality. Thank you.
    Eu amo as coxinas da sua irma. Ele tem namorado?
    Your sister has nice thighs. Does she have a boyfriend?

    I would like to sample some of Brazil's finest cuisine.
    Eu desejo filezinho e feijoada.
    I'd like to have third-class beef grilled up in a bar, and understand your national dish involves the most disgusting parts of a pig.

    My good man, could you recommend an evening's entertainment?
    Minha bicha, eu desejo estar com sua mamae hoje.
    Bitch, I'm here to see your mom for the night.

    Your nation's hero traveled the world.
    Seu heroi, Santos Dumont, foi um morde-fronha frances.
    Your national hero was a gay Frog.

    Both of our nations enjoy the challenge of spacetravel.
    Quando esto os explosaos seguinte no Alcantara e Cape Canaveral?
    When are the next explosions at Alcantara and Cape Canaveral?

    Our nations have many things in common.
    Os politicos, tudo de mundo, e corrupto.
    Politicians all over the world are corrupt.
    And so we start to introduce Lil' Genghis to her "other" language, knowing she'll enter into the world with a goal of being worldly.

    And we'll also acknowledge that, if Brazilians don't like her American accept, she'll simply smile and think, Meu nacao tenho armas nuclear.