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KIDS (permalink) 11.30.2011
now both marty and i can field a call from our children's schools.
for such a happy go-lucky guy, his style of math to word problems are a bit on the morose/morbid side.

QUOTES, KIDS (permalink) 11.29.2011
you get to field this call from the school when it comes.
it began with a jokey comment made by a five-year old anthony to marty in front of me. he leaned in on her and intentionally said loud enough for me to hear ...

i love you more than i love daddy.

well yes, that is true right now but it will change soon enough.

ANTHONY (perplexed anthony raised up)

MARTY (without looking away from her paper)
there will come a time when you will look to dad to teach you how to be a man and when that happens, he will become more important in your life.

and you can't tell me how to be a man?

well no, i can't because i'm not a man. i'm a woman. it's my job to teach bella how to be a woman. what i can teach you is how to be a man that women would want to be with. but it's your dad's job to teach you how to be a man.

without even throwing a brotherly or conspiratorial nod my way given this newfound bond between us, anthony turned and walked off calling for his ten year old sister.

bella? bella? where are you bella?

BELLA (calling back)
i'm in the kitchen anthony. what do you want?

ANTHONY (yelling out as he walks towards the kitchen)
bella, did you know mom is going to teach you how to be a woman ... and dad is going to teach me how to be a man?

MARTY (to me)
that sounded a lot more innocent when it came out of my mouth.

QUOTES, KIDS, FOOD (permalink) 11.23.2011
a new TROYSCRIPT was posted today.
got milk?

QUOTES, KIDS (permalink) 11.22.2011
it's sad that you're the one asked and expected to hand your child the needle
bella recently asked me to establish an email account for her. i told her that i would under the condition that her first ever email be sent to me. she readily agreed.

here's the first ever email she received:
On Nov 20, 2011, at 9:24 AM, Troy L DeArmitt wrote:
welcome to the world of email.

may it not overtake your life.

and the first ever email she sent:
On Nov 20, 2011, at 9:35 AM, Bella DeArmitt wrote:
Dear Dad,
Thank you so much for setting me up an account. i'm sad to say that this will probably, sadly, overtake my life and I will use it as an excuse to get onto the computer, thanks for giving me the account.
it's hard to not appreciate a healthy dose of self-awareness and candor.

QUOTES, KIDS (permalink) 11.21.2011
all i want for christmas is my sister's two front teeth.

anthony, is there anything you would like for christmas?

i would like bella to be called pinhead.

obviously i caught him in a moment of angst, an occasional artifact of living big. while i would contend we need to return to the well for another option, i fear marty's going argue for the name change because we can actually afford that.

NUTRITION (permalink) 11.17.2011
but, where do york peppermint patties go???
after forty plus years, i've decided to start being smart about what i eat. being far denser about the matter than you can imagine, i did the following:
  1. read up on what is recommended.
  2. created a system to guide and track my eating.
  3. filled out daily (or near daily) how well i'm doing (in an excel spreadsheet i made).
if you're wondering what it looks like, in typical tradition, i'm more than happy to share. as for what i've learned thus far, it's way more difficult to eat a proper diet than i ever imagined it could be. regarding the system, wherever you see a grey box, it means i missed something i was supposed to have had. the colored boxes on the left, denote how i did for the day. i only get a green for a perfect day. a yellow means it was ok, and a red implies i missed by a fair amount. if i didn't consciously work towards a green day, every one of my days would be in the red. it can therefore be said that every day of my life before i began this exercise last summer was a red day. every last one of them. suck!

click to enlarge

KIDS (permalink) 11.16.2011
we often hear of ma bell, but what about her children
phone etiquette and kids stands as a most schizophrenic affair. they come across, sometimes simultaneously, as both more and less mature than they really are. how someone hasn't dedicated a show to capturing these early fumblings is a real miss. obviously my kids are no exception. here's a present observation on each of mine.

BELLA (age 10)
four out of five times bella answers the phone one of the first things she says is, "no, this isn't marty. this is bella. marty's my mom."

ALEX (age 8)
anytime alex calls home from somewhere else, the first thing we hear is, "hello, this is alex, alex dearmitt." conversely, whenever he answers our home phone he says, simply, "what?".

ANTHONY (age 5)
someone called the other day during marty's morning BM. upon hearing the ring she decided to let it roll to voice mail. then she didn't hear a second ring. what she did hear was anthony's voice from my office saying in a business-like tone, "my mom's going to the bathroom". then without another word of discourse or courtesy she heard the plastic clack of the phone being returned to the cradle (yes, we use decades-old, corded, wall-mount phones — of course).

while guarantees in life must be issued judiciously, i feel safe in promising that the phone skills coming out of my house will do nothing but improve and improve dramatically in the years ahead.

KIDS (permalink) 11.15.2011
six people counts as more people, right?
we recently had our parent-teacher conferences for bella and alex. during bella's, her teacher slid a folder across the table and said it was story bella had written for an assignment. he said he felt it was very good and suggested we read it. he then said he wanted to ask permission from bella and marty and i if he could offer it to other teachers in the school to be used as a teaching aid for students learning to craft stories.

obviously quite proud, i later asked bella if i could post her story on my website. without looking away from her book she said "sure, the more people that hear the message the better, right?" some parents are nice to their kids because they know that one day in the future their children will be responsible for their care and they want them to have fond memories so they care for them well in their old-age. the only difference between me and and other parents of ten year olds is i fear that day is going to happen about six months from now.

so allow me to present bella's first bound, and by bound i mean triple stapled, story, Something I Learned From Another, or it's alternate title, Knitting Army.

click to download pdf

HYGIENE (permalink) 11.11.2011
alex came into pee moments after i stepped out of the shower. we said our good mornings and each went about our ablutions. instead of leaving after washing and drying his hands, he leaned against the sink and watched me, with great curiosity, rub gel into my hair. after a few moments he studiously asked, "why do you put glue in your hair?" without looking away from my task i matter of factly replied, "because that is what you do to broken things alex."

if you gave me three months to come up with a better answer than my from the hip quip, i'm sure i could not.

PHOTO (permalink) 11.10.2011
a new GALLERY IMAGE was posted today.

BOOKS, QUOTES (permalink) 11.09.2011
i'd like you to find a stronger review for any book, anywhere.
an anthony reflection.
i wish half the world was made out of candy and the other half was made out of amulet books.
the amulet is a graphical novel which is quite good, especially if you liked the Bone series.

KIDS (permalink) 11.08.2011
what happened to good ole sitting in silence?
at the dinner table, marty asked the kids if they could recall their earliest memory. immediately you saw the engines rev up past an idle as they leafed the pages of their mind's photo album backward. after just a few seconds and without looking away from the beef kabob he was working on, alex began:

i remember when dad lost me at the zoo when i was four.

oh, i remember that too alex! i still remember how much my hand hurt from dad dragging me behind him looking for you.

ALEX (still not looking up)
and i remember when i was five and you let go of us on the hill and we flew down to the bottom, hit that wall and flipped over on our heads.

oh i totally remember that too alex. can you believe dad did that? not very responsible i'd say.

TROY (giving marty a glower)
can i request to play a different game?

while the stroller debacle was documented it seems losing alex at the zoo was somehow left in the editing room which might be a sign of just how traumatizing it was for not only alex, but me as well. the only other mishap i believe i never wrote about is when bella almost drowned at the pool when she was four which was mercifully left out of the earliest memories game. i know i didn't recount that one on the site given how traumatizing it was for me. this was the closest i got to even referencing it in any way. so for the people who routinely ask me what it is that i don't talk about on the site, there it is, the too scary to recount stories.

PHOTO (permalink) 11.04.2011
a new GALLERY IMAGE was posted today.

KIDS (permalink) 11.03.2011
well, i just don't know what to say to such kindness.
the day after halloween i found this note on my desk with a orange pumpkin half-full of candy.

how such a specific bowl comes to be is when the kids (and any accompanying friends) come home from trick or treating they spread out in a room, dump their candy out before them and conduct a fast and loud series of trades in attempt to upgrade their candy stock. you hear things like "i'll trade five dum-dums for one snicker" or if something is really hated, "anyone what this pile of sour-patches ... it'll just cost you three peanut butter cups". alex is a great person to have in your trading circle because he doesn't like chocolate. what i didn't know, before this week, was that there is a special 'hate' bucket where the candy that nobody likes gets tossed into. and if you're curious what some of the terrible sorts of things found in there might be: tons of almond joys and loads of peanut m & m's, two of my favorites (and to the more refined palettes go the spoils.)

QUOTES, SPORTS (permalink) 11.02.2011
loud and proud
i may have been the only guy in st louis who was hoping texas would win game seven. my logic, the cardinals got game six, it only seemed fair and just to give the series to the never-won rangers. that way everyone walks away with a positive. but it was not to be. in honor of their effort, allow me to share my all-time favorite texas-related string of words. it is a bit of advice from a texas father to his boy.
Son, it is very rude to ask a man where he is from. If he is from Texas, you will find out, and if he's not, don't embarrass him.
from a 1944 pro-texas booklet called Texas Brags that was put together by a fella named john randolph. i came upon it in a recent new york times magazine.

PHOTO, WEB (permalink) 11.01.2011
you know the drill

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