Translate

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Saying good-bye to my dog


I couldn't have asked for a better friend and companion. He was indeed my best friend. He held my secrets. He forgave me when I would take my frustration out on him. He loved me unconditionally.

Chato Matisse was given to me by my parents after vacationing in Mexico in 1998. The first night I had him, he yelped the whole night until I brought him on my bed to lay next to me. Similarly, he yelped in pain, sixteen years later, and I was there to comfort him.

I wish I could have done more for him. I wish I had more money to spend on medication and treatments to keep him alive longer. Maybe he could have lived up to 20 years old.

The vets kept recommending treatments for Chato, but I didn't want to commit hundreds of dollars. Six years ago, the vet found inflammation on the right side of his heart, but I did nothing for it. It was then found he had spinal arthritis, cataracts, and then kidney failure. This meant a lot of dollars I couldn't spare to invest on a geriatric dog.

God, I feel so bad.

Then there were times I wish I didn't have Chato. I actually called my parents years ago, when I was single, to tell them that I didn't want him. They urged me to keep him, and I'm glad they did.

He kept me company when no one was around. He was there when my heart was broken several times. He was there when I fell in love and saw my wife and I bring life into the world. He took care of us when my young family needed his protection. He did what a good dog was meant to do.

Then there was the night he didn't come home. It was quite normal for him to walk around the block, but he would eventually come home. This one particular time, two years ago, he didn't come home and I was worried. It turned out that my adventurous dog wondered the neighborhood, crossed a major road, and found his way to a daycare school.

As a resolution for 2013, I asked for Chato to be with us one more year. God was gracious and allowed me to keep him a little longer.

Chato had been looking frail, but he still had energy. The week before his death, I decided to let him sleep with me on the couch. Years ago, his sleeping spot was on the bed next to me; however, because of his lack of bladder control, he was moved to his little bed on the floor.

I received a call from my wife as I was driving back from a business trip to inform me that Chato was not doing very well. She informed me he threw up blood. At that point, I knew he was close to death. I told her to keep him comfortable and that I was coming home.

He laid in his bed in a daze. It took him a while to recognize my presence. I squatted next to him and pet his hair. He looked into my eyes and I sensed he was glad to see me.

I could feel his pain as he struggled to stand. He would walk a few steps and then begin to vomit blood again.

Although a part of me accepted his passing, the selfish part of me didn't want him to die. He was the only connection to my past, and letting go meant I had to grow up, forget the past, and be more responsible.

As stubborn as he lived, he again tried to shake his illness, avoided falling asleep, and attempted to stand. After several hours of vomiting blood and gagging, he finally went to sleep and didn't wake up. It was about three o'clock in the morning on his birthday, April 28th, when he passed away.

I wish his death was painless. I really do. Watching him die was the hardest thing I have ever experienced.

He was my companion, my best friend, and I will always miss him.


Chato Matisse, April 28, 1998 to April 28, 2014

Picture_0036.jpg
Taken November 23, 2003




Saturday, April 26, 2014

10th Game of the Season


Again, I had to miss my son's baseball game. However, it seems as if he performs better when I'm not there, which does make me a little sad.

My son's team, the Astros, tied the game again the Yankees. Supposedly, the Astros' defense was suffering that game. The Yankees were outscoring the the Astros.

According to the text messages I received from my wife who was giving me the play-by-play, our son went up to bat. The team had two outs and we were two batters left in the lineup. Our son finally made connection with the ball and made it to first base. The second kid, who has been having trouble batting hit the ball too. The next batter brought in my son home to score his third run for the season.

His stats, so far:

Game 1:   PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 1 SB: 3 R: 1
Game 2:   PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 3:   PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 4:   PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 5:   PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 6:   PA: 1 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 2 R: 1
Game 7:   PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 0 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 8:   PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 9:   PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 0 SO/K: 2 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 10: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 0 SO/K: 1 H: 1 SB: 1 R: 1
Total  :   PA: 19 AB: 6 BB: 9 SO/K: 7 H: 2 SB: 8 R: 3


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

9th Game of the Season


It was a soggy evening for baseball, and the mist and drizzle impacted our team, the Astros.

The Indians dominated the game over the Astros. The number one team won with a score of 7 to 4.

Our team struggled at bat and on the field. It wasn't until the third inning when our boys finally got a hit and a run.

My son stuck out twice as he continued to struggle at bat. He did, however, played strong on third base and right field. At one play, he tagged a runner who was returning to third after a failed attempt to steal home.

His stats, so far:

Game 1: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 1 SB: 3 R: 1
Game 2: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 3: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 4: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 5: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 6: PA: 1 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 2 R: 1
Game 7: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 0 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 8: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 9: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 0 SO/K: 2 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Total  : PA: 17 AB: 5 BB: 9 SO/K: 6 H: 1 SB: 7 R: 2



Thursday, April 17, 2014

8th Game of the Season


My son's team, the Astros, moved up in their division standings to second place after a victory on Saturday against the A's.

Unfortunately, I was only able to watch my son at bat rather than the whole game, since I had concession duties. The good thing was that my wife kept me informed by text messaging me the play-by-play of the game.

Last week, we got our son a private instructor at D-Bat to work with him on his batting. The instructor gave him homework to rotate his hips when swinging the bat. So, before he took the plate, he practiced rotating his hips.


His stats, so far:

Game 1: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 1 SB: 3 R: 1
Game 2: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 3: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 4: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 5: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 6: PA: 1 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 2 R: 1
Game 7: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 0 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 8: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Total  : PA: 15 AB: 5 BB: 9 SO/K: 4 H: 1 SB: 7 R: 2


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

"No Quasters"

Well, at least they spelled "Tokens" right.

Playland Skate Center, Austin


Photo taken on April 13, 2014 using the iPhone 5S.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Wheel of Fortune can be entertaining, especially College Week



Julian Batts represented Indiana University during College Week on Wheel of Fortune which aired in April 2014. Although he beat the other contestants, getting to the finish line was a bit brutal.




Julian had landed on a million dollars, then spun three more times to compete the board. The board read "Mythological Hero Achilles," except he mispronounced Achilles and instead said "A-Chill-less"





"I can't accept that," Pat Sajak responded.




Texas A&M sophomore student, Shelby Edmiston, who was standing to Julian's left, proudly pronounced the answer and took the win.




Julian did redeem himself after solving the the following puzzle of "Science Project Runway" and increased his total to $11,700. 




Then he dominated the last puzzle and it seemed as if he was on his way on solving another puzzle.




He spun six times, earned $14,250 and a Chevy Sonic, but then lost it all when he asked for a "C." C like in car. The category was "Person," which common sense would mean the missing letters would have to be a "M." Car is a thing.




Again, the Aggie swooped in and solved the puzzle, and she won a trip to Jamaica, home of the world's fastest man, Usain Bolt.



In the Speed-Up round, with only seven letters missing, Julian confidently guessed, "On-the-Spot-Dicespin." Yes, dicespin. I guess he knows how to spin a die.



Again, the Aggie solved the puzzle, "On-the-Spot-Decision."

Nonetheless, Julian still had more points and won the game. Sajak commented, "Julian, I don't think anyone has ever taken a more circuitous route to victory..."




Sources:

http://youtu.be/BYcps2Nx_20
http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv-movies/watch-wheel-fortune-contestant-commits-comical-blunders-article-1.1755746
http://gma.yahoo.com/blogs/abc-blogs/did-best-says-student-flubbed-wheel-fortune-113115717--abc-news-tv.html?vp=1
http://www.webpronews.com/wheel-of-fortune-contestant-loses-chance-at-1-million-in-embarrassing-way-2014-04
http://1079ishot.com/worst-wheel-of-fortune-player-contestant/


Saturday, April 12, 2014

7th Game of the Season


There is a kid in my son's team who really doesn't want to be there. While at the batter's box, he is unwilling to get in a ready position. His arms are down. His bat is back. Then he lets his arms drop before the ball even crosses the plate. Strike.

I'm told, by my son, that this player doesn't like baseball and that his father makes him play.

This is something my wife and I want to avoid doing to our son. However, if it were up to my son, he'd probably spend his afternoons playing video games.

At the beginning of the season, we asked our son if he was still serious about baseball. He said he was, but we weren't convinced. We gave him two options: baseball or hip hop. He chose baseball.

The past few games, he's been playing outfield--a position he doesn't like very much. My wife said that I should talk to the coach and share "our" concerns. I responded that I would do it only if I knew that it really bothered my son and if I knew my son was serious about playing baseball.

She spoke to our son and he said that he was serious about baseball, that he doesn't like playing outfield, but he didn't want us to talk to the coach.

This last game, my son played a few innings in the outfield, but did play third base, the position the kid who doesn't like baseball plays, in the last inning. Needlesstosay, my son was happy.



Chances are the father of the kid that doesn't like baseball spoke to the coaches and asked to place his son in the infield. To accommodate the request, my son was placed in the outfield.

My son's team did win their seventh game of the season by two points. The team currently sits third in their division.

His stats, so far:

Game 1: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 1 SB: 3 R: 1
Game 2: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 3: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 4: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 5: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 6: PA: 1 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 2 R: 1
Game 7: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 0 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Total  : PA: 13 AB: 4 BB: 8 SO/K: 3 H: 1 SB: 7 R: 2



Friday, April 11, 2014

Want to learn Mandarin?


I came across an very interesting infograph that breaks down the "World's Top Languages." Mandarin followed by Hindustani and Spanish are the top  three. Although we are number four, this tells us that perhaps maybe we should invest some time to learn Mandarin like in the Sci-Fi series Firefly, dui?






Tuesday, April 8, 2014

6th Game of the Season


My son's team, the Astros, is now ranked 3rd in his division. This is good news for a team that was struggling for the first few games of the season. Now it seems the kids are familiarizing themselves to the game to the point that they are now communicating with each other and helping their team win.

My son had a good game too. Although he walked, he did manage to seal two bases and scored a run. It had been since game 1 that he had scored a run, so this was good for him.

On the other hand, my wife took it personal that my son kept being assigned to the outfield. My son loves to play infield and to him, playing outfield is boring.

Sure enough, there wasn't many hits to outfield. And when there was finally a play, he was benched.

I explained to my wife that I couldn't do anything about it. If I knew he was serious about the sport, then maybe I can talk to the coach.

I see a lot of kids spend their time practicing with other kids. I see many of them on the field hitting balls in the batting cage. My son spends his time in front of his computer playing Minecraft or some other game and even avoids the outdoors, for the majority of the time.

If I knew my son was serious about the sport, if he was outdoors practicing his swinging or fielding, then maybe I can talk the coach in putting him in third or second base.

Nonetheless, below is his stats, which are actually good:

Game 1: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 1 SB: 3 R: 1
Game 2: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 3: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 4: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 5: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 6: PA: 1 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 2 R: 1
Total  : PA: 11 AB: 3 BB: 8 SO/K: 2 H: 1 SB: 7 R: 2



Saturday, April 5, 2014

Fifth game of the spring season


Controversy plagued the little league, this week. A new rule was decided by the executive committee, without the consent from the Board. Many parents didn't like the new rule change, and a few board members challenged the decision, including myself, eventually causing the executive committee to rescind the new rule a leave it to the Board to decide during the next meeting.



My son's team, the Astros, played against the Rangers in a game that resulted in a tie. By the final inning, the tension could be felt in the air, and perhaps more so since the President, who was part of the executive committee, was coaching the Rangers team.

Performance-wise, this was one of my son's best games. He did great on defense.

The last few games, the coach placed him in the outfield, positions he doesn't like at all. After playing the outfield for two innings, my son played third-base and second-base. While playing third-base, he tagged a runner out.

His batting still needs work. He was struck out the first time he made an appearance. The second time he walked to first. He did manage to steal a base, but was unable to make it to home.

His stats, so far:

Game 1: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 1 SB: 3 R: 1
Game 2: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 3: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 4: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Game 5: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Total  : PA: 10 AB: 2 BB: 7 SO/K: 2 H: 1 SB: 5 R: 1



Thursday, April 3, 2014

Fourth game of the spring season


My son's team enjoyed their second victory of the spring season as they dominated the game against the Reds.


He had a good game too. His first plate appearance resulted in a walk. He did manage to steal second base but didn't complete a run. Unfortunately, he did strike out on his second plate appearance.

Again, he was assigned outfield, a position he isn't to excited to play. As he expected, there were no plays in outfield, except when he was benched.

His stats, so far:

Game 1: PA: 2 AB: 1 BB: 1 SO/K: 0 H: 1 SB: 3 R: 1
Game 2: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 3: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 2 SO/K: 0 H: 0 SB: 0 R: 0
Game 4: PA: 2 AB: 0 BB: 1 SO/K: 1 H: 0 SB: 1 R: 0
Total    : PA: 8 AB: 1 BB: 6 SO/K: 1 H: 1 SB: 4 R: 1





Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Confessions of a Gym Dweeb: Why I can't bring myself to do Yoga?


My wife does yoga, which I sure do enjoy watching. I also helped my office get yoga started during the lunch hour. I've even suggested yoga to my best-friend as a solution to his back issues. So why can't I bring myself to do yoga?

1. Too feminine. Yes, it's stupid. Yes, its sexist. I'm in no way masculine to even think this way, and I've seen guys who are more manly that do yoga.

2. Too intimidating. I haven't done yoga. I think the only pose I've ever done has been the seated meditation. The poses I see my wife do looks complicated and painful. Why do I want to balance on one leg and lean forward like the woodpecker toothpick picker upper?

3. Too intimate. I can't see myself participating in a yoga class. I would be afraid to accidentally let one loose. Plus, I have a thing for feet. I'd be focused on looking at other people's feet, while I should be concentrating on yoga.

However, personal trainers do suggest to change workout routines, especially if you find yourself hitting a plateau and not seeing results, which is happening to me. Yoga is considered a great alternative. Even Gold's Gym advertised Broga®, yoga for men, and my wife suggested that I try out her yoga app and do it by myself at home.

Maybe one day I'll give it a try, but for now, I'll stick with my boring workout routine.


via yogaholics