Monday, October 30, 2006

I Love Lamp, I Love Lamp

What's great about having a baby is you get to re-live everything. I am rediscovering things that my daughter is only discovering for the first time, and appreciating how great they are. Last week, we had two major discoveries.

First, hands. Hands are pretty friggin' cool! I've taken them for granted, but when you stop and think about it...without hand gestures, how else would we know how good/bad a movie is? How else would waiters know when to bring us the check? How else would we greet fellow occupants of the New Jersey Turnpike who cut us off before exit 8 last weekend in the red Hyundai?

Second, light. Every time we pass a light, she stares at it. When I feed her, she just looks up at the lamp behind the feeding chair. I think she loves lamp, not unlike Steve Carell.

Two other things I'd like to mention...

A good friend of mine (who will remain nameless until he tells me this news is public) will be joining the world of newdaddys soon. He asked me: what conventional wisdom about parenting turned out to be wrong? I told him that everyone says diaper changes are the hardest thing about being a new parent; when I really think it's feeding. This gave me an idea for a feature on this blog: Ask Newdaddy. Got a question about newdaddydom? Ask me by sending an e-mail to I can't promise that my answer will be right, or that it won't be a bunch of garbled palaver, but it may make for a good topic.

Second, DaddyG, another close friend of mine, has recently been re-inducted into the world of newdaddys. Be sure to check out DaddyG's "A Daddy's Diary."

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Elephant Trunks

For Halloween, we are dressing Bud up as an elephant...partly because she likes the elephant on her play-mat, but mostly because the costume is really cute. I thought it would be a good idea if Newmommy and I got elephant trunks to wear, so that we would be a matching family.

I went to Party City, thinking that this would be a common item for a party store to sell- and it turns out I was right. It did, however, take me a long time to find the trunks, as the store was packed with people getting their Halloween costumes.

By the way, this store was proof that there are more "sexy" costumes in the world than women who should be wearing them. Yet, from the looks of the people at Party City, there's going to be no surplus of sexy costumes this Halloween!! Ugghhh....

(Un-)sexy costumes, drunk/pregnant Britney Spears...they had everything. So you could imagine my surprise when the 16-year-old check-out girl rings up my two elephant trunks (together under $5), looks at me suspiciously (like I just bought porn) and snidely says, "Elephant Trunks?" Yeah, like I bought the strangest thing in the store today! It's a friggin' Halloween store in the last week of October. Are you kidding me??

Check-out girl tells me that she's dressing up as the bumble bee girl from the Blind Melon album cover (and the video for 'No Rain'). I think I had a high school teacher who had that idea in like 1993. What were you, three years old when that album came out? Just ring up my elephant trunks.

P.S. Congratulations to the St. Louis Cardinals. I only wish you had managed to pull that off two years ago.

Thursday, October 26, 2006


Dear Tourist Mother on 46th and 8th yesterday at about 8:15am getting on the double-decker tourbus,

Leash-a-kids are unacceptable. Leashes are for dogs, not for keeping track of your child. If you can't keep an eye on your child while he is within the radius of the leash, you probably shouldn't be taking the child out alone.

These things are especially unacceptable on an ten year old. I do realize that New York City is a very scary place, but it's not so scary that you need to leash a ten year old. That's just paranoia, and humiliating to the child.



P.S. Putting matching "I heart New York" sweaters on your three children is also unacceptable.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Complaint Department

I got my first complaint about this blog. Someone was upset that I had posted two articles that were not on the topic of daddying. (Actually, only one wasn't on topic, the other sort-of was).

You know the expression "the customer is always right." That's not our policy here...if it's 11:30am, you have to order something from the lunch menu. Breakfast's over...

But it's more than just that. And it's more than adding color to this blog. Daddys are people too, and I don't spend my entire day "daddying." I go to work, sometimes engage in what's left of my social life, watch sporting events, write on this blog...I'm sure there are other things in there somewhere (I think I ate a steak last week). To truly describe what it's like to enter the world of fatherhood, it can't be all stories about spitup and sleepless nights and social smiles. I gotta throw in a rant about how boring a world series between St. Louis and Detroit is...I mean, come on, the World Champion the year my daughter was born is either going to be the Cardinals or the Tigers.

While we're on the topic of this blog, what's worse- the fact that someone googled "Revenge of the Nerds 4 Booger Burp", or the fact that my blog was a hit for that search? Revenge of the Nerds FOUR?? Someone's actually looking for a scene from Revenge of the Nerds 4??? And I'm getting complaints for talking about baseball?!?!?

Saturday, October 21, 2006

The Hall of Lost T-Shirts

Fatherhood brings a lot of "hellos"...but, unfortunately, it also brings a lot of "goodbyes." Goodbye having a car that's not decorated with baby stuff....goodbye spur-of-the-moment dinners out and goodbye T-shirts, lost to the world of spit-up stains.

Today we salute my "Urbanfetch" T-Shirt. A free gift from Urbanfetch, an internet service that used to deliver videos, ice cream, snacks, etc. around New York City. Although very short-lived (I think it was around for a year between 1999 and 2000), Urbanfetch was quite useful when I was in law school.

The shirt was with me through the temporary work-out phase in 2002...when I swore I'd hit the gym four times a week. It was almost lost in my luggage on a flight back from Puerto Rico in 2004. It's survived sweat, nights of sleep and hours in the hamper. And now it's gone. Stained forever by spit-up. Urban Fetch T-Shirt...I'll miss you.

P.S. A big congratulations to DaddyG on the birth of his daughter. It's his #2, but I'll welcome him (back) to the Newdaddy club!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

That's not sushi....

Well, toilet training is now no longer a problem for parents, thanks to this instructional video from Japan...

Some things are better left untranslated.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Bjorn to be Wild

"I used to be with it, but then they changed what "it" was. Now, what I'm with isn't it, and what's "it" seems weird and scary to me." - Grandpa in "The Simpsons": "Homerpalooza"

This past weekend was a weekend of firsts: first time I was alone for the day with Bud, first time I drove in the car with her (not including the ride home from the hospital), our first family outing (apple-picking), and, of course, the first time I donned the Baby Bjorn.

I always thought the Baby Bjorn looked strange- and it does. I really didn't want to wear this for the day, and when I tried it on, I was hoping it just "wouldn't work out," but the minute I put Bud in there, she smiled, closed her eyes and let out a relaxed coo. She obviously liked it, and she immediately won me over. So, I was finished. That's bad news...only one month old and she's already winning. My credit card is doomed!!

I'm walking around an apple orchard wearing a Baby Bjorn. This is how it starts. Then, I buy a fanny pack because it's "practical." I begin to like the gentle tunes of Kenny G. Dinner time gets earlier and earlier. So does bedtime. TV doesn't make sense anymore, so I start a Pinochle club while my wife plays Mah Jong. Suddenly, I'm living in Florida. Bud's kids come to visit and I tell a 75-minute story about how cheap the movies used to be a $20 a pop. My blog posts are all about my doctor's visits.

I don't mean to double up on the Simpsons quotes today, but they both sum it up so perfectly!

"I used to Rock 'N' Roll all night and party ev-er-y-day. Then it was every other day. Now I'm lucky if I find half an hour a week in which to get funky." -Homer, same episode

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Well, I'm an Idiot

"Frank: You can't run the ad and then not run the story."
"Fletch: You can't? Why not? Shit. Really?"
- from "Fletch"

OK, I changed my mind about that live-blogging of the middle-of-the-night feeding. It would have been very easy to just delete that post, but I figure I'd be up front with you. Here are my reasons:

(1) Posting that would have made me a hypocrite. I specifically said that I didn't want this blog to be a "Minute-by-Minute My Baby" I know why you read Newdaddy, it's because of my integrity. And I would hate to let you down.

(2) Bud slept "through the night." There really was no middle-of-the-night feeding. We put her down at about 12:30am, and she woke me up at 6am.

(3) I don't even own a tape recorder. Tape recorder? I don't even own tapes. I have one of those mini-recorders, but I keep that in the office.

(4) The feeding was uneventful. It would have been a terrible post. No spit ups, very quick burps, and a reading of "Hippos Go Berserk."

There you have it...a little bit of honesty.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Spitup Live!!

Stealing an idea from a friend of mine, I will be live-blogging tonight's middle-of-the-night feeding. Of course, I won't be at the computer...I will dictate into a tape recorder and post tomorrow.

Reminds me of a joke: "Can I borrow your dictaphone?" "No, use your finger like everyone else."

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Book Report: My First ABC Board Book

[Spoiler Warning: I give away the ending in this post. Please do not read if you would like to remain in suspense.]

I heard a lot of good things about this book when I went out to buy it, but I think it came up short...especially in the plot department. In the first two pages, you meet the characters "Apple" and "Bear", briefly get to know them, and never hear from them again! What ever happened to character development?

Where's the conflict? Peacock, Quail, Rabbit...I was expecting a massive rumble between these natural enemies!! Instead, nothing...right to the Snowman.

And the twist ending involving the Yo-yo and the Zipper...totally predictable. Try surprising the reader once in a while!!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Newdaddy: One Month Report Card

Sunday marked Bud's one month birthday! The time sure went fast. Let's take a look back on my first month as a father, and see how I scored.

Feeding: B. I got the basics down: the "football hold" (which, ironically, I never got down in gym class), mixing the formula quickly so as not to leave her crying, etc. I deducted points for my inability to burp properly.

Running to the store to pick up stuff: A+. I got very good at that this month...even better than during the training period (pregnancy).

"Stuff" assembly: A-. Not only is it incredible how much "stuff" you need for a new baby, it's also incredible how much stuff requires assembly. Thankfully, assembly has gotten easier, and instructions have generally gotten better since I put together Ikea furniture in my college apartment. Lost points as I think it takes me longer than it should.

Baby Talk: B+. I am getting very good at talking in "Baby." Yes, I am! Yes, I am!! Yesh I am my googly-woogly. Lost points 'cause I still get annoyed hearing it from other people.

One-handed-task-negotiation: A-. With a baby in one hand, doing normal tasks with only one hand is a challenge. But, as a corporate lawyer, I have become quite proficient at the drink-and-plate-of-appetizers-in-one-hand-so-as-to-keep-the-fork-free maneuver at cocktail parties...this was a natural step for me.

Long-phrases-connected-by-dashes: A+.

Photography: B. Essential to any good father's repertoire. It's not that my pics aren't good, I just don't take enough. I have to get on that.

I did pretty well this month, although some areas need improvement. We'll revisit this next month.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Off-topic Rant: The Yankees


Are we friends yet?

I know that this blog is about my entrance into the world of fatherhood, but I figure we've reached a point in our relationship that we can periodically expand into other topics. So, let's talk about what's on my mind.

The Yankees are out of the post-season. For all intents and purposes, baseball season is over (at least for me). And they went out like suckers.

First, credit where credit is due- the Tigers played a hell of a series. Bonderman pitched an amazing game today.

Now, to the Yankees...the team needs to be completely revamped...the team needs to be broken completely apart and put back together. Here's my theory- the Yankees, especially the post-season lineup, are a collection of some of the best players ever to play the game. Everyone on that lineup had at least one appearance in an All-Star game! Problem is, they are not good as a team. So, you have a bunch of great individual players. After 162 games, mathematically, you are probably going to come up with enough games to make it to the post-season. But, when you need to win three specific games...say 3 against the Tigers (or Angels or A's for that matter), or 4 against the Marlins or Red Sox...that's really difficult. Adding post-season pressure, the teams playing as teams will probably outplay the random collection of all-stars. And that's what happened today.

As much as I hate to say it, the Yankees have to lose some of the dead weight and start over. First divestiture...A-Rod. I really thought he was going to show all the booing-NY-ers that they were wrong. Guess not. Randy Johnson...he's a headcase. On the list of keepers: Jeter, Cano, Posada. What the Yanks really need to do is realize that there is a wealth of talent in their farm system! Cano, Cabrera, Wang...who else is playing AAA or AA that can be of help next season?

Some will tell you it came down to pitching. Maybe, maybe not. I still believe Moose is a solid pitcher (although I did not have faith in Johnson or Wright.) Back in the late '90s, however, the success came not out of the individual players, but out of the team chemistry that just wasn't there this year.

Well, at least the Red Sox didn't knock us out.

Thursday, October 05, 2006


"Oh man, I have no idea what's going on!" -Towlie

It's good to have "Lost" back...even though I had NO idea what was going on in that episode last night. I had a better understanding of last season- a guy has to wake up every 108 minutes to stop a loud screetching noise...well, that pretty much sums it up for me.

My Tivo has a mind of its own (it thinks I'm 5 years old because I tape "The Simpsons" and "Family Guy") so I missed "The Office" tonight. I think "Lost" and "The Office" are two of the three best shows on T.V. (the third being particular order, of course), although I think "The Office" is getting particularly close to a certain shark....

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Calling the Shit "Poop"

As Billy Madison would tell you, there are quite a few names for "poop." Problem is, when you try to have a serious conversation with an adult (especially a doctor) about the digestive health of your baby, there is really no good word to use. That's because words for "poop" fall into three categories: (1) kiddie-words like doodie, poop, poopie, caca, plop and doodle, (2) vulgar/obscene words like shit, crap, dump and load and (3) medical words (that sound strange coming from a non-doctor): stool, fecal matter and bowel movement. You can't win!

Now, back to our first family post-season game! (Yankees vs. Tigers. Yankees up 5-0.)

Sunday, October 01, 2006

First Date (since the baby)

Last night, Newmommy and I had our first night out since the baby arrived. We left Bud (still no luck on a nickname that'll stick) with Newgrandma (my mother...Newmommy's mother is Newnana) and went into the city for dinner.

As we walked down Second Avenue, we saw groups of city-raised teenagers beginning their nights out in the same venues that we frequented when I was in law school. We were amazed that people who looked fifteen and sixteen were bar-hoping; and then it hit us, almost simultaneously: we are parents out for the night, with the babysitter at home. That is bizarre.

It got weirder when I called Newgrandma. I'll admit it- I was checking in on them. I asked how things were going. Newgrandma: "fine...she's doing great!" I asked if Bud ate, burped, was if my own mother never had kids! Finally, Newgrandma said, "everything is fine, you go have fun and let me get back to my granddaughter!" (The inflection was very reminiscent of "Maaaahhhhmmmm! I'm fiiiinnnnne. Leave me alooooone!")

To my defense, I only did call once, and we stayed out a good portion of the night. But, leaving her...even with those I trust, is going to take some getting used to.