Main menu

"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG

Geek Dad

A Night with the IronPigs

by Ken Newquist / August 12, 2008

 Coca-Cola Park, home of the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs I went to my first-ever baseball game with my dad last night, as we watched the Lehigh Valley IronPigs take on the Buffalo Bisons at Coca-Cola Park in Allentown, Pa.

It took us a while to get there, seeing as how I'm 36 and he's 66, but it was worth the wait. The IronPigs are the AAA affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, which means they're one step down from the Show. The new stadium reflects that; it's a first-rate, beautiful stadium. I doubt there's a bad seat in the house; we had field-level seats down the first-base line and even we had a good view. It was also cheap; tickets were $9 a person, and even with the entire family there -- my parents, Sue and the two kids -- the whole thing end up costing me about $60.

It was fantastic being there with the kids, sitting in foul ball territory with Jordan, gloves in hand, waiting for fly balls to come soaring our way. None came close, but it was fun to watch and wait all the same. Jordan was half-crazy with excitement about being at the game, and while she got a little wild at the end, she loved it. It was a good trial run for going to a big league game -- like watching the Mets at Citi Field next year.

Good Bye Elmo, Hello Truck

by Ken Newquist / August 10, 2008

 Elmos on the Sofa

One of Luke's first words was "elmo". No, not the Sesame Street character. He rarely watches TV, and when he does, it's not Sesame Street. No, "elmo" was his word for truck. Cars he calls go-gos (no doubt from the many readings of Go Dogs Go he's enjoyed) but trucks have always been elmos. In recent months, he's mixed this up. Dump trucks? Dumpy elmos. Big trucks? Bumpy elmos. No matter how many times we said otherwise, trucks were elmos.

Until last week. When, while walking up the stairs to his room, he decided to call them trucks, and keep calling them trucks. They're simply not elmos any more. Infact, if you say "elmo", he corrects you and says "truck".

All of this is part of his toddler word explosion. Car. Grass. Green. Money. Bike. Blue. Saint. Move. Play. The words just keep coming, as do the combinations, as he tells the dog (that'd be saint) to move, points out blue trucks, and exclaims that he wants to play on his bike.

OOF 8/7: 7 hours at Dorney Park

by Ken Newquist / August 8, 2008

I didn't get any formal exercise in today, but I did spend seven hours walking, running and swimming around Dorney Park and Wild Water Kingdom with my daughter Jordan. The consensus on Twitter seems to be that spending a day running around an amusement park with a five year old counts as exercise, so I'm claiming it for OOF.

Living in the Datacloud

by Ken Newquist / June 21, 2008

As I write this, I'm in a Holiday Inn in New Hampshire. I don't have a laptop with me, but I've got a stack of Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition books next to me, and a review due Sunday night. A few years ago, I'd have been doomed, but now I've got access to the net via the hotel's lackluster Windows XP machine. The machine itself doesn't have Microsoft Word installed, but again, no problem: the net has what I need, or more specifically, Google does.

Sitting in Google Docs is a copy of my review, and with a few clicks, I've got the document up in front of me, cursor eagerly awaiting my input. I won't finish the review tonight (especially if I keep breaking away to Nuketown to write spontaneous blog posts) but that's ok. One quick save, and my Google Doc's updated, and ready for me to pick it up again once I reach my sister's house.

Laptop? Who needs a freaking laptop?

Geek on the Water

by Ken Newquist / May 12, 2008

 Jordan and I canoeing on the Bushkill Creek.

Jordan and I went canoeing on the Bushkill River on Mother's Day as part of an effort to get Jordan, Luke and our friends Jess and Dylan's two-year-old twins used to the idea of being in a boat. We started off putting all four kids in the boat, and then Sue and Jess dragged them up and down the brook for a while (exceedingly cold work, given that it was only about 70 degrees out, the water was far colder, and they were standing in it). Once the little kids had had their full of the water, I took Jordie out in the (slightly) deeper water. The water was about two feet deep in this picture, giving us just enough clearance to go paddling.

The dent you see in the side of the canoe is not from me; rather it's a legacy of a disastrous family canoing trip on the Delaware River when I was a kid that ended with said canoe colliding with a rather rock after our first encounter with rapids. The canoe is in good shape in spite of its Titanic moment, and Sue and I have had it out on the Delaware a bunch of times, though not much since the kids were born.

Jordan at Five

by Ken Newquist / April 6, 2008

"How many Harry Potter movies are there?" Jordan asks me from the back seat of the Wrangler as we drive around Easton. The question isn't surprising; she's just watched Chronicles of Narnia and has decided she's ready to watch the first Harry Potter movie.

"Well, there are seven books," I said, "but there are going to be eight movies, because they're splitting the last book into two films."

There's a pause, then Jordan says "Eight minus two is six."