The Logical Philosopher

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Kids have made me lazy

"You should call."

"No, you should call, you're closer."

"But you're the better talker."

"You're just saying that because I'm closer to the phone, and you don't want to get up."

It was after 9pm, and the kids were finally in bed, asleep. Exhausted after a day of playing them out the snow, we both sat on the couch with our feet up and our bodies soaking in the heat of the wood stove.

I don't think we realize how much the kids tire us out until they are asleep for the evening and we can do things for ourselves.

Likewise I don't think we realize how much we get the kids to play fetch for us until they are asleep for the evening and we have to get things ourselves.

"I wish the kids were up."

"What! It took an hour to get them down!"

"Yeah, but if at least one was up, we could be lazy and get them to fetch the phone for us. Instead I'm just going to pretend whoever we had to call wasn't an important call, thus convincing myself that I don't really have to get up and get the phone."

Yet again the Pandora's Box of parenthood rears its ugly head...

Monday, November 27, 2006

Accidentally Outed

Today's post has been brought to you by my guest writer Sandritia. I don't have a Blogging Intern yet, but she's as close as I'm going to get right now...

It's been awhile since my last guest post (also my first guest post). Since that time I have had my office invaded and my favourite pastimes exploited with what can only be described as cavalier opportunism on the part of LP. I have however, been assigned my own blogger category and that is coooool. Or so I thought.

I must confess: having been in on LP's double life for some time, I became somewhat careless. I couldn't help but share his story about the Office Gatekeepers with the actual Office Gatekeepers. There are, afterall, so few that share their pain. These women are perpetually perky and pleasant at all times while also being real and sincere. In my opinion, they are the greatest reception staff on the planet. So I knew they would appreciate LP's humorous snapshot of something they deal with every day and I sent them the link. I didn't even think about it. The result was predictable. I could hear the laughter from down the hall and Head Office Gatekeeper made a point of telling me that the post totally made her day and more than that, she was going to stick it in her "funny file" for a pick me up whenever the mood strikes (at least now I know how they maintain the perpetual pleasantness). HOG (sorry for the acronym!) also mentioned how much she enjoyed LP's writing and that she had started reading some of the other posts.

Thinking I should pass along the accolades, I told LP later that night and his reaction was not quite what I expected and went something like this:

LP: You know, you have to be really careful about making the connection between a real person and the blog for outsiders.

Me: My code name is "Sandrita"… how careful have you been here?

LP: I'm just saying…. Think about how much you reveal about yourself once you lose the anonymity.

And then I did start to think about it. I went back to the site and examined the entries under my buzz word that I thought was so cool and my blog record revealed an entirely different snapshot of my existence:

I'm a procrastinator, upwardly mobile, ice-cream eating sexually experimental partier, who likes to write, and has colorful pastimes and colorful friends. And all this you can derive without even reading my many many comments littered throughout the blog.
Indeed, a portrait of Sandrita as viewed through the lens of LP paints a much more colorful character than I actually am. Remember people - he takes liberties with the writing. Of the snapshot painted above, I confess only to being an ice-cream eating procrastinator... he got that part right. Though I could be a little more careful about accidentally outing LP or anyone else referenced on his blog, perhaps I should just embrace the potential notoriety.

Mental note: must tell HOG about this post - she'll love it! .... oops, I did it again!

Editors Note: When Sandritia called to "discuss" with me that she felt she had been outed on my blog, and that she wrote a post about it, I felt she was bringing herself full circle to my first post: another quagmire. I, for sure, didn't out her on my own; I can only assume the visions of fame from being blogged about lead her to passing my blog name around. But if that's what it takes to bump up my readership, then look out Eduardo and JT, you're next.

Friday, November 24, 2006


Did you ever have one of those days filled with ironic happenings?

An older lady struggled to get on the bus behind me today, weighed down by her shopping cart full of empty bottles. Her shirt was stained beyond any sort of sanitary redemption. Her shirt had a large Tide logo stretched across the front of of it.

After getting off the bus I walked past a vacuum store where one of the store's employee was outside sweeping the doormat clean.

I arrived at Starbucks and the young, semi-fit man in front of me ordered a Venti Maple Frappuccino blended crème (640 calories), a piece of coffee cake (890 calories) and, "for a treat because it was friday", a chocolate mint brownie (620 calories). By 10:00 he had consumed his daily suggested caloric intake, just "because it was friday". I would have hated to see him really go on a binge "just because it was a Saturday"...

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Time Brings Clarity

This week I ran into one of my old high school teachers. He was a great math teacher, but I always thought he was kind of strange. You know the type, not really in sync with the rest of society, yet put there to teach the next generation.

"Hello Mr. H, how are you?" I asked.

He turned to see me with a shocked look, and wasted no time in getting around any salutations that others may have started into. "Oh my goodness. Logical P! You are looking more like your brother every day!"

"Um, well..." I started, vaguely remembering that he also taught my older brother four years before me.

He continued on, "And that's not a good thing, nor a bad thing, it's just to say there is something to be said for genetics after all!"

He rambled on for a little while that he was glad both he and I were alive "because, remember old Mr. O? He's six feet under, yet here you and I stand! How marvelous!"

As we parted he genuinely wished me well, but walking away I thought to myself, On second thought, I wasn't imaging any sort of social disconnect when he taught me twelve years earlier, it was 100% real.

Friday, November 17, 2006

An Inefficient Haloween

He was buzzing with excitement, the mere smell of the candy in the air enough to give him a sugar buzz.

"I am dressing as BATMAN!" Little LP exclaimed to anyone that would listen, throwing his cape over his eyes and darting is hand up to punctuate his words. All week, we heard nothing but 'batman' and 'candy'. Last year at Halloween, little LP dressed up and after being coaxed out into the cold, was elated when he discovered people would simply give him candy for free for simply yelling "Trick or Treating!" at the door. This year was different - he knew the drill - or so he thought.

At dusk we set out, Batman leading the way and dad keeping a close eye out for the good candy that needed "put aside" for mom and dad "just in case".

Knock knock! I heard as he arrived at the first door. "Trick or treat!" he screamed. "I'm Batman and I'm here for some CANDY!" I don't know if it was the excitement, or his realization that people were giving him sugar for free, but he started to chat. "I'm four you know, but my sister is two and still at home."

"Oh, that's too bad little Batman, here's some for your sister" I heard, as he collected another handful of loot. I could almost hear him thinking Hmmm, more talking is more candy???

A full EIGHT minutes later he departed the first house, having collected his booty. He repeated his performance for each house on our street, going no faster than three minutes at one house, but staying at another for twelve. To be fair the twelve-minute house visit had a talking and singing pumpkin, but the Return on Investment of the Talking to Candy Ratio still didn't pay.

I kept thinking of the Pretty Woman line, when Vivian is talking to Edward about not having to woo her with Champagne and Strawberries when they get to the hotel room.

"I appreciate this whole seduction thing you've got going on here, but let me give you a tip: I'm a sure thing."
Yes, a sure thing for candy yet he was taking the time to chat with each person. Later, I though of the math behind little LP's first real Halloween outing:

1 new trick or treater
+ 12 houses
+ 1 hour
= 1/4 bag of candy

Considering the adults ate most of the candy the following week, all I can say is I hope he is more efficient with his Halloween collection next year. If not, it may need to put in some father-son bonding time to teach him about the economics of seduction on Halloween night - it just doesn't pay!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I am the keymaster. Are you the gatekeeper?

"We're early," he noted. "Do you think she'd let us drop our stuff off?"

I paused, thought about it, then responded "Yeah, of course! Sandritia would love to have us drop 3 big bags of luggage in her uptown office while we run around town and she continues to toil for her clients!" And so off we went.

We arrived at her building and made the trek to the 21st floor. Stepping off the elevator we saw a long hall to our left, the path to the partners and associates offices. To our right was the receptionist, who looked up at the two of us with a "this way please" look.

"May I help you?" she inquired, looking us up and down. Travelling into town after a week of holiday Eduardo came with two bags of luggage. Travelling just for an overnight I came with one. Combined we probably looked like we were ready to check into the Hilton, but missed the building and showed up at her reception desk instead.

"Yes, we're here to see Sandritia" I said helpfully to the receptionist.
"She's expecting us." Eduardo chimed in, hoping to expedite the process.

She made a call, glancing up at us as she spoke into the phone in low murmurs. A few moments later Santritia appeared. "Hey guys!" she exclaimed, giving us each a hug. "Long time no see, come on down and see my office." Escorting us back down the left hallway, the receptionist disappeared from our sight. After dropping our luggage off for storage on top of a pile of briefs (legal, not fashion), we agreed we would return in a few hours when she was done working.

Soon, 5 o'clock came so we trekked back to Sandritia's building, once again heading for the 21st floor.

Ping! sounded the elevator as we arrived. Stepping out we looked to our left - towards Sandritia's office, and to the right, to the receptionist. Unspoken, but in unison, we turned to our left and quickly headed down the mini maze of assistant cubicles to Sandritia's office. Seeing us, she turned and gave us the 'just finishing up on the phone' sign, which gave Eduardo the opportunity to flirt with her assistant. "My friend is a writer," I heard him start with. It never fails, I thought, that LP can be used as the lead-in for getting a girls phone number. We shall see if it successful this time...

A few moments later Eduardo was interrupted mid sentence by a stern "A-hem!" Turning we saw the receptionist, having tracked our corporate B&E down. The gatekeeper had come, and we were without our Proton Pack.

We stood and faced her, a showdown of sorts, but only for a brief moment. Sandritia, oblivious to what was going had finished up on her call and popped her head out of the office. "Hey guys - come on in!"

I turned, flashed a smile at the receptionist, and then headed in. I think I hear her scowl back, which I confirmed when Sandritia quizzically asked "What was that about?"

Eduardo paused and thoughtfully noted. "She saw our weakness in the slight pause."

"What?" Sandritia looked back and forth at us, slightly confused.

"We hesitated...." I translated to her.

"... yeah, next time, exit and a quick step to the left." he finished with.

Our lesson today is that to get around the gatekeeper, it's the hesitation that will kill you, not the actual B&E... Louis Tully from Ghostbusters knows exactly what I am talking about...

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I need a blogging intern

It's not the lack of stories - just being around people and experiencing any waking moment gives me ample blogging fodder. And that happens even without using any artistic licence to decontextualize things! As proof in the past week I have had 3 or 4 blogging stories ready to go:

  • My recap of the Toronto trip - the city of high on customer service and low on the homeless
  • How a child's broken leg will influence customer service, both from professionals and casual observers
  • The Accession of Knowledge (the unwritten part II) has also been rumbling around and is looking to get out for blogging review
  • The drunk bus passenger, who apparently was on his way to school for an exam

But nothing seems to have been written. I have been working on another writing project, which has sucked all of my blogging time up. With these stories already outlined in my head I couldn't help but think it would be nice to just have some blogging intern that I can give the verbal point form outlines to and have them crafted into true prose for the readership. Think guest posts with a crib sheet!

Even though I hadn't posted this week, somehow the interns haven't magically come calling. Maybe I'm not famous after all...

I guess it's back to the literary trenches myself. At least I can take solace that as a one man show, I don't have anyone to boss me around and I don't have to do performance reviews for my underlings. There is always a bright side to things when you look really really hard.