The Friend Test, Dads and the Cosmic Powers Beyond our Control

The friend test, Dads and the cosmic powers beyond our control, straight up stories from in and around the Carr house for week 12, NO BULL.

Having a Beer
Had a laugh a couple of times this week, with social media. Nathalie and her BFF are what one might call avid Facebookers’ and as such, have some very funny observations and then post them as status updates for the world to see, or at least the group of people, lucky enough to be their friends.

This week, it was the seemingly strange battle Murphy (as in Murphy’s law) has with Karma and how we always have things to blame for the actions and happenings around us. The ladies both observed, all be it in different ways, that if these two factors just got along for once, things would be a little smoother in the world, and that made me laugh. Yes they come from different cultures, and have different abilities and sometimes different uses in life, but I laughed thinking that if Murphy was having a drink with Karma one day, and they just hashed out their different approaches to making things happen, over a nice cold pint, that they might be able to just work together to make the whole world a better place. See you CAN learn things from Facebook.

Friend Test
When students apply for the program I teach, they fill out a 13-question profile that among other things shows us the passion they have for the industry. One of my favourite questions is, “What are your favourite television programs and radio stations and why?” and it is amazing how many people, applying to a “radio” program say, “I don’t like radio”. The other side of this of course, is the people who pick the TV shows that paint a not so flattering picture of ones character. “I love Jersey Shore, because the acting is so powerful” kind of stuff.

I was talking with a friend at school about it, and laughed at the idea of having a test like this in life, so you can almost eliminate people from your world that for whatever reason don’t share your love of certain types of entertainment. Now of course, opposites do attract, so some of the results would have to be carefully scrutinized, but come on, if you would rather watch one of those Bachelor type reality shows over a good drama or even a smartly written comedy, then is there a place for the that person in you future? Nothing against those types of shows I suppose, but it just makes me laugh that if we had a way of sorting it all out, early on, it may save some fighting about the remote control down the road.

I have been thinking quite a bit about dads, and their role in your life over the last couple of weeks. A close friend lost her father 2 weeks ago, and that started me thinking about not only my own father, but also the father I am and the one I hope to be one day. One thing occurred to me, if there is one person in your life that teaches you by doing it is your Dad. I had to think about it a lot, but I so totally believe that it is true. My parents divorced when I was 2, and my dad played such a small role in my growing up, that it was hard to draw from my own life example, when so many I know have had their fathers in their entire life. But sometimes the lessons they teach are not always by being there; sometimes the lessons are examples, learned by not being there.

Over my adult life, my father and I have become much closer, and I think I have learned the importance of balance in one’s life, and the need for the fun times from him. I have heard of friends’ fathers that have been involved in their entire life, but as always a “non-supporter”. Although it is hard to imagine that as a good thing, the truth is that most will find a supportive fatherly figure, like a neighbor or teacher that will often fill that void, so that when the person is a parent themselves, they will have learned what they do not want to be like, from what was missing in their life.

I love Saturday Mornings!
So as for the Father I would like to become, I think I want to teach my kids that they can be whatever they want, and do whatever they want in life by being strong and confident a mostly a good person. I have never been a big fan of the statement, “nice guys finish last” and always say in response that I can see way more from the back. My only hope is that this lesson comes through to my girls, more as the lead by example as apposed to the, “what not to do” because I didn’t show them.

In closing

Rides in the car are always fun with the girls, and this week I got a very interesting question from Jordyn. I knew it was going to be interesting by the way it started, “Dad, we watched a video in class yesterday about a boy and a girl” Jordyn said with a smile on her face. I turn the radio down, prepare for the worst and rehearse the line I have practiced in my head for as long as I have had children. “Ok, so with the penis, is it true that it is one size, then it gets wet, and it goes straight up?”

Now while I pause here for dramatic affect, later that day, when I bumped into her teacher in the office at school, I thanked her for the lesson and the question in the car, and she laughed, adding that they had talked about erections, but after a boy in the class asked about wet dreams and waking up with one. So that must be where the “wet” came into the lesson. Jordyn remembered, wet, straight up and penis and just tied them all together.

OK, back the answer, and how I have always planned to answer the tricky sex question, “Jordyn it is not quite like that, and maybe you should go ask your Mom.” Confident it went well, I relaxed my shoulders for a second only to have her respond, “But Daddy, why would I ask Mommy, she doesn’t have a penis, that is why I am asking YOU!” Good point Jordyn, ah man, I am screwed!

See I always thought having one of these things was kind of fun, but now I am not sure!

Thanks for reading and have a great and safe week!

Electronic Notices, a Potluck and The Anniversary of my Birth

Electronic notices, a potluck and the anniversary of my birth, stories from in and around week 18 with the Carr’s

There is something to be said about those who thrive on change. A new opportunity transformed into an adventure by moving, or a fearless leap of faith, magically turned into change for the better at work, are all wonderful examples of great things that happen when you are able to benefit from change. Truth be told, I just have never been a big fan of it, in general. Now I am a realist, and understand that things cannot remain the same forever, but it sure is nice when you realize that some things don’t change.

For the last 21 years of my life, my Birthday has basically been the same and I have to thank Nathalie and her family a tremendous amount for that. For as long as I have been with her, all but for one of these 21 years, we have spent it in Whitby at her parents place (one year her parents went to Curacao for Christmas!). Piles of presents fill the living room, with the sound of a crackling, well maintained Opa fire adding warmth to the room, and the joy that comes from taking turns opening presents, one at a time, one by one. Time spent to enjoy and acknowledge the feelings that each gift brings to each receiver.

I get that there is something else happening on the 25th of December, that has a way of taking over things, but for me, the day always seems to be about me. Even my 3 year old niece CC, didn’t want to take a nap this year, saying she was too excited for my birthday! Nathalie and the girls always do a great job of making me feel special and reminding me throughout the day that Jesus may be the reason for the season, but it is little old me, that is the reason for the happiness on this day.

P.S HAPPY birthday to my little twin sister also!

Cake by Lisa Wong -
Have your Cake
I have spouted off at least three times over the last year or so, about the wonderful “Cake Artist” we count among our friends, Lisa Wong. Now, I get to brag about her again, because Thursday night, just after the kids went to bed, I got to answer the door to a surprise delivery for MY birthday. The whimsical nature, speaks directly to my heart, and I sometimes feel just like a snowman in, sitting around watching the world go by, waiting for a dog to pee on me. Thanks for the gift Lisa, and I am happy to say that it tasted just as wonderful as it looked! To order your own cake for any occasion, send her an email


This week Nathalie’s company had a pot luck lunch to celebrate the holidays, and it was also to raise some money to help one of the employees who’s daughter has been diagnosed with leukemia. Because I have been helping out with the redesign of the company website, I was able to crash the party, and sample some of the wonderful food prepared with care and love for the occasion and I felt special to take part in the day. Touching was witness to Carlos’s speech about his daughter and how moved he was to be working for such a wonderful company and working with so many caring people who donated money and purchased raffle tickets, all in support of his daughter.

I LOVE that I received more then 50 wall posts and a couple of messages on Facebook, acknowledging my birthday, as well as several more email messages form various sites I have signed up for memberships over the years. Carnival Cruise lines sent me an animated card, NBA All-Access sent me a 15% off discount coupon, and 680news Insider club sent me 680 points for my fan club account. I even got a message from a site I forgot I signed up for on a whim, using an alias, wishing Jack “a Very Happy Birthday”. I love that people take the time to say hello and happy birthday at this busy time of year, even if it is some automatic message generated by some program, running on a server some place. It makes me feel special, and I just wanted to say a big Thank you to all those who sent along birthday wishes to me. I truly am blessed!

In closing
I once heard a joke that goes something like this… There is a religious guy stranded in a boat in the middle of the ocean, and he starts to pray to God, “Please God, give me a sign that you are there, and help me.” A short time later, a little boat arrives and the man says to his would be rescuers, “Don’t worry, I am fine I have my faith” and so the boat turns away. The man continues to pray and a short time later, a bigger boat arrives, and again, the religious man waves on the crew on, in lieu of a grand sign from his savior. Following more praying, an even bigger boat arrives, and yet again the man tells the crew that he will be OK, because of his belief in a higher power, and again they leave him to his solitude. When his boat later capsizes, and he dies and is greeted in heaven by God, he is crying when he asks the all-important question, “God, why did you not show me that you existed, by helping me?” and all God says is, “I sent you three boats!”

This week, I felt a little like the guy in the boat, and what I thought I would see is some grand sign that my Mom was with us, celebrating Christmas as she always has been, but I saw nothing of the sort. No grand sign or big “Ahh ha” moment of her presence, instead I realized that she WAS with us in the tradition, and smiles, and laughs and stories we all told about her over the last couple of days. All this, in of it self IS a sign that she WAS with us and for that I am truly grateful. Merry Christmas to all and have a great New Year!

Next blog, the year in review!

Thanks for reading and have a great and safe week.