OB/GYNs are Peeping-Toms

Lounging around the womb.

Hello Folks. Yesterday I accompanied my lovely wife to the doctor’s office to take a sneak peek at the kiddo in utero, and boy what a cool little ‘field trip’ that turned out to be. For those Dudes out there who have never had the pleasure of spying on a fetus, I’ll give you the down and dirty…

The first thing that happens when you arrive for your appointment is the pregnant woman (we are going to call her Momma) gets her vitals checked out. It is important to make sure that Momma is on track with blood pressure and weight gain. We don’t want the baby to be hungry or tweaked out, so a quick check of the vitals is imperative. Everybody loves a chunky baby, right?

Next, Momma gets interviewed by the Nurse. There is a long list of questions that the nurse reads out, which I can only guess was written by a military interrogator. I’m not quite sure what some of these questions had to do with pregnancy, but if anyone can tell me what “when was the last time that you ate a peanut butter sandwich after watching the episode of Grey’s Anatomy when Izzy over-sympathized with a dying patient?” has to do with incubating babies, please let me know.

After the nurse is happy with the answers to all of the questions, you are moved to an examination room. Here is where things start to get a little interesting. There is a small television monitor plugged into an outlet alongside the exam table. This is the ultrasound machine. This nifty gadget is what the Ol’ Sawbones uses to photograph and monitor the baby. I’m not entirely sure how this device works, but I assume that it runs on the same principals as SONAR. Like a mighty Spruance Class Destroyer tracking down Soviet subs, this precision instrument pings sound waves through the soft tissue of Momma’s belly and gets a return off of the baby, which is displayed on the screen for our viewing pleasure. I wish that I could have been given free reign over that apparatus for fifteen minutes. I could have literally looked into some bodily mysteries that have always eluded me, but that is for another forum. Back to the baby…

Next, the Doc squirts some aloe-vera type stuff all over Momma’s belly and begins to rub a probe around until we get a good heartbeat from the baby. This part can be particularly stressful. I find this akin to an elderly man scanning the beach with a metal detector, patiently canvassing miles of sandy shoreline, listening for that sweet soft beep. Once you have located the baby’s heartbeat, you are ready for the fun to begin, but do not let the brevity of this description fool you, dear readers. It can take an awful long time to pinpoint the baby’s tiny heartbeat. I don’t know where our little gremlin (this is a pet name, I assure you) could have possibly been hiding, but it must be part ninja because it dropped a fetal smoke bomb and disappeared for a good two minutes. Vanished. Kapoof. After a couple of very long minutes of searching, we found it and relaxed a little. We still had a few things left to do; we had to get a look at our little miracle and do a little prenatal paparazzi-ing.

Once the heartbeat is found, it’s face time. This is when you get up-close and personal with the baby. The Doc switches out the previously used probe for a small instrument that looks like a paddle. This is used to peer through Momma and into Baby. The Doc moved that paddle all around my wife’s belly until she found the ‘sweet spot’ where we could get the best look at our new addition. Now, my wife is only 13 weeks along, so I wasn’t really prepared for what I was about to see. I expected to see a little tadpole-ish dude or dudette looking up at me like an alien who has been trapped inside my wife and cannot figure out how in the heck it got there. Boy was I wrong! The little person that appeared on the screen before me actually looked like a tiny little human. Not a tadpole, not an alien, but a human being. Granted, I couldn’t see a lot of details and this machine was definitely not an HD Sony Bravia, but I could certainly ascertain that this little guy looked a lot like me. It already had arms. It had legs. The little chap had the whole kit and caboodle! From what the Doc said, the only body part that has not formed at this point is the lungs, but it’s all gravy because the baby uses Momma’s blood for oxygen. Kind of spooky, like we have a sparkly little Edward incubating in my wife! Living on blood…yuck.

Back on topic. I’m pretty sure that the baby takes after me because we have a tiny show off on our hands. As soon as we got a good view of the fetus, it started cart wheeling all over my wife’s placenta. This baby was dropping it like it was HOT! We could see the little arms moving. The hands were opening and closing, the feet kicking, the booty shaking. Our kiddo was a rockin’. I must admit that this was a pretty cool experience. The Doctor takes some snapshots of the baby while explaining what you are looking at on the screen. The pictures, kind of like second rate Polaroids, are printed out of the bottom of the machine. Just like the photo booth at the mall, but free! Either way, the snapshots never really come out exactly like what you are actually looking at on the screen. The picture labeled “Baby’s Head and Arms” came out of the printer looking like a dragon that was attacking a medieval castle, but we accepted the portraits none-the-less.

The last thing that the doctor does is some measuring. Doc uses a digital tape measure to figure out if the baby is on the right track, growth wise, and lets you know the age. Cool stuff. Our baby looked good to go, so we were both very happy. All in all, it was a great experience. I enjoyed spying on our little one. Now we are waiting for our next visit when we get to see if my superior genetics have produced another son or if my wife’s secret prayers have been answered for another daughter (I know you want another girl Baby!) Either way, I’m glad that all was quiet on the “southern front”. Until next time, stay classy.

This is the measurement of the baby's head.


Share the Love (via Mark Steven Thompson)

I meant to post this a couple of days ago, but got sidetracked. The blogosphere can be a pretty small world. This was a great way to start the day. Thanks Mark, for the kind words. Best of luck with your writing and your blog.

I want to say thank you to a fellow blogger. As is the life of those who aspire to write, its only natural you'll take the odd knock and feel as though your not getting anywhere. Most will persevere, keep going, and rise above it, content in the knowledge that its all just part of the process. Yet it helps to have others who are in the same boat as you, perhaps on a similar journey offer a helping hand and some friendly encouragement. I want to e … Read More

via Mark Steven Thompson

Freshly Pressured

Wow…what a weekend folks. I survived another rejection notice, I went to the circus with my wife and kids, and one of my posts was featured on Freshly Pressed! I cannot tell you how excited I was (and still am) that the “Powers that Be” chose one of my posts to be featured! I felt like a rock-star. Still do. I know that my wife and children are probably tired of hearing about it. Thank you to all of the folks out there who visited my blog and all of those who left a comment. I truly enjoyed reading each of your remarks and I hope that you all come back soon for another visit.

There are some definite benefits to being featured on Freshly Pressed. You get the satisfaction of knowing that your blog will be reviewed by more readers and you get a big boost in confidence. On the contrary, there is also an often overlooked consequence to being displayed on the WordPress homepage; pressure. I’m now lumped in with those who belong to the seedy underbelly of the blogosphere; the one time wonders of Freshly Pressed. I now feel super pressured to post better content. I know that quality trumps quantity, but what if I make a spelling error, or even worse, what if one of my blog post falls flat on its digital face? What then? I now know how the primates at the local zoo must feel about their situation. I feel terrible for all of the acclaim and recognition that I have lavished on those simple apes. How pressured they must feel to consistently outdo their last performance…what a shame. In the future I will be mindful of their strife prior to boasting of their over-the-top showmanship and their humorous antics. Perhaps that will allow them a fleeting moment of relief, at the least.

I guess that about does it for now. Again, thanks to those of you who read my blog, even the ones that did not like it. I know who you are, by the way. I hold no grudge, but next year I may forget to remind you of the dreadful day! In the meantime, stay classy!

Friday the 13th meets Cupcake Wars

You know folks, I didn’t even realize that today was Friday the 13th until I read through a few blog posts on the WordPress dashboard. Thank goodness that I have managed to survive. I consider this an amazing feat since I had no forewarning. Thanks FOX News. Thanks CNN. Thanks for nothing! Luckily I have escaped certain death and, being in Japan, I have already weathered most of the evil storm that you all in the states are going to go through over the next 15 hours. As long as I am able to hold it down for the next two hours over here, I should be good to go.

It would have been nice to have known a lot earlier today that somewhere out there lurks a masked killer poised to lob off my head at the drop of a fedora. That is the kind of information that I am looking for when I watch television, but there was absolutely no mention of this ominous date in the media today. Again, this could well be the fact that I am 13 hours ahead of EST, but that doesn’t excuse the media’s lackadaisical attitude towards the most notorious day of the year; not to mention their total disregard for my safety. Perhaps they should issue some sort of “Crimson Alert” type of thing when crazed psychopath killers are out on the loose, but instead of a cutting edge early warning system for serial murderer celebratory days, when I turn on the television, I see Cupcake Wars. Yep, you heard me folks; Cupcake Wars! I flipped on the tv and that is all I got. No warnings, no news, no political banter. Just Cupcake Wars.

For those of you who have never seen this ‘amazing’ television show, it goes a little something like this:
The audience is introduced to four sets of pastry chefs from all over the United States. Occasionally, the viewing public is surprised by an interesting import such as a French pastry chef or a Cambodian cupcake cook. Almost always, there is a contestant who is all tattooed up and is running an edgy bakery somewhere in Southern California. Probably pot cupcakes, but I digress.

These blowhards get all worked up competing against each other to create unique cupcake recipes that revolve around various themes, depending on the week. Unfortunately, there is only so much that one can do with a flipping cupcake. These “chefs” usually come off to me as self-indulgent windbags, especially the moron covered with tattoos that thinks that he is bringing something raw to the world of cupcakes. Newsflash dipstick. There is already something raw about cup-caking. It’s called eggs! Give me a break. You are an overrated caterer for children birthday parties and company potlucks. You make miniature cakes for crying out loud. You don’t even make big boy pastries!

The big shots that run network programming need to get a grip. How the hell is a cinnamon ginger jalapeno cupcake going to stop Jason Voorhees? Perhaps he is a sucker for red velvet, but I highly doubt it. The only red that he wants to see is the blood that he squeezes out of your jugular!

2010 Name That Twin Contest

Well folks, today marks the day for the first annual Name That Twin Campaign. The rules are simple. You must tag my twin brother Jeremy and I each with a fitting nickname. Sadly, most of you out there do not know us. In actuality, this is a post that is none-to-covertly aimed at getting under my dear brother’s skin. Either way, if you would like to play, please feel free to chime in. The contest will run for seven days and will be open to anyone who can bang out a coherent entry on their keyboard. I will announce the winner on my blog in seven days.

I have come up with my own entry to start things off. Don’t worry, I will try not to be biased when judging, but I am fairly certain that my entry will win.

Here is my entry:

Me: The Professor

Jeremy: The Chimp

***Disclaimer-my brother is not actually a primate, but in some circles I am considered a professor.***

What do you folks think? It is kind of catchy, huh? I imagine that it will make conversations regarding my brother and I much more interesting. For example:

“Wow, did you see the pictures that The Chimp took this weekend at Vikki’s wedding?”

“What? Vikki hired a Chimp to photograph her big day? I knew that she and Bill were struggling, but jeez louise.”


“Did you hear that The Professor is now living in Japan?”

“I did. I also heard that The Professor and his wife are expecting their third child.”

“The Professor is awesome.”

“I know. He is, isn’t he.”

I tell you what folks, nicknames sure can spice things up. I am looking forward to some interesting entries. Good luck and hope to hear from you soon. Let the fun begin!

I won an award…bazinga.

Whoopee! I was recently presented with the Versatile Blogger Award! You can see it here. It was awarded to me by the writer of http://36X37.wordpress.com. First off, I am grateful that anyone would want to present me with an award of any type. It is kind of cool to know that others may actually enjoy reading what I have to say. The recipients are also requested to reveal seven things about themselves that are surprising and to recognize seven blogs that they have recently discovered that caught their attention. So, without further adieu…

Seven things about me that may surprise you.

1) I am married to a wonderful woman and have two great kids, with one more en route. I know that I have talked about them on here before, but they bring surprises to me everyday, so I wanted to list them first.

2) I am a terrible speller. I use spell check with reckless abandon. My six year old would out spell me any day of the week. Including Wendesday 😉

3) I am a conservative. Hard core. I believe in achieving the American dream through your own hard work. I didn’t start a blog to talk about politics, but I do love to be involved. I am a Rush Limbaugh 24/7 member. Enough said.

4) Even though I am conservative, I still try and have an open mind. Yep…I will listen to what anyone has to say and my opinion can be swayed, if the right argument is presented.

5) I would love to finish a novel; writing one, not reading one. I think that would be a great achievement.

6) I am better looking than my identical twin, Jeremy. I know that it is genetically and scientifically impossible, but somehow, I pull it off. Ask my wife. She agrees. Sorry Jeremy…:-(

7) I like small dogs. Yep. The smaller the better. I have a Chihuahua. His name is Levi (I know…) and he is my little buddy. Unfortunately, we have been separated by a career move. We still talk and love each other dearly.

That about does it….I’m actually not that surprising.

As far as the 7 blogs that have caught my attention, stand by for that. My internet connection is not that great at the moment, so I am having to email this post in. I will update phase two when I get a better opportunity.

Thanks again…

Brother, this one’s for you!

I figured that I would tell you folks a little about my twin, Jeremy.  He, after all, inspired the name of this blog.  There are many stories that I could tell, but I’ll just share one today.  First, a little background information…

Twenty-nine years ago, I shared a tiny room with the young fetus that I now call my brother.  For nine long months, our budding elbows and knees fought turf wars in the womb of our dear mother.  On a glorious night in October of 1980, I bid my womb-mate farewell and entered this world, leaving him to his own devices.  One hour and twelve minutes later, he followed, stealing the spotlight for the first of many times.  It seemed that his arrival was much anticipated, even the doctors cheered as he emerged from hiding.  A side note:  I have always been a practical type and cannot quite understand why our lovely mother bears no ill feelings towards him for procrastinating so, while she lay miserable, on a hospital gurney.  He can be quite charming, I guess.

Throughout our younger years, Jeremy and I were practically inseparable.  We didn’t even call each other by name.  We simply called each other Brother.  Cute, huh?  He was, I admit, a little bit smarter than I, though I was no dummy.  I just seemed easily suckered into his penchant for mischief and tomfoolery.  Jeremy has a devilish twinkle in his eye that, to this day, could lead me straight into the oncoming traffic of trouble.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  Jeremy is not evil; not even close.  He just inspires that little red dude on your left shoulder to prod you with his minuscule pitchfork into doing things that you know could end poorly.  Here’s an example:

When I was about six, my brother and I saw a show on television that was all about the space program.  It had astronauts, moonwalks, space shuttles; things that would excite any kid.  I remember wanting to be an astronaut so badly that I could taste the moon rocks.  I would sit in my room at night and pretend that my bed was a space pod.  I spent hours zipping past alien planets, rescuing little ladies from moon bandits, and doing all kinds of cools space stuff.  My brother had gotten pretty keen on my infatuation and he decided to twist it to fancy his amusement.  He convinced me that the dryer, which I didn’t even know existed in our cramped family laundry room, was a tiny space shuttle, one of the Kenmore fame.

“Just look at the air tight space hatch on this baby.”  My brother was smart.  He pulled the square door open.  “There is no telling where you could go in something like this.”  He was one heck of a salesman.

“You know what Jeremy, ”  I said.  A dim little light bulb flickered over my cow licked head.  “I’m gonna take this thing for a spin.”  How true that statement ended up to be!

I donned my space helmet, a vegetable strainer, and tumbled into the dryer.  Before my brother sealed the air lock, I reminded him to give me a proper countdown.  “That,” I added, “is very important.”

“Ten, nine, eight, seven…” Jeremy counted very well for a six year old.  “six, five, four, three, two, one, BLASTOFF!”

Nothing.  I heard him fumbling with the controls on top of my shuttle.  Finally, something began to happen.  I could feel gravity shifting all around me.  This is amazing, I thought.  Very quickly, it began to get hot inside of my exploration vehicle, probably from breaking the sound barrier.  I remember getting very dizzy.  Moments later, limp as a sock, my mother was pulling me from the dryer.  I remember getting a spanking as my brother explained that he tried his darnedest to stop me.  He also mentioned that he feared that I was ‘slow’ and should be held back a year in grade-school.

Thanks for that one Jeremy.  I still get nervous around laundromats.