Thursday, April 27, 2006

Yahoo! Mail Beta

Cathy and I are both Beta testing the new Yahoo! Mail interface. Overall, I like it. It looks and functions much more like Outlook than a web based service. You can preview messages like in Outlook. The biggest disappointment so far is how closely the RSS aggregator is tied to the "My Yahoo!" service. When you first open the Beta service, it loads all of your RSS feeds from your My Yahoo! page. You can't place them in folders and if you delete one it is deleted from My Yahoo! also. I wish they weren't so closely tied together. More reviews to come as I use it more. If you want to become a Beta Tester, go to this web site.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Parker's first surgery

Well, it's official, Parker is going to have to go under the knife for his first surgery on May 1st. After 4 ear infections and 7 rounds of antibiotics, Parker is going to get "ear drainage" or Tympanostomy tubes. It's a routine procedure that shouldn't take more than 20 minutes. Two of his cousins had the procedure and are now doing great. The biggest concerns are reactions to the anesthesia and keeping his ears dry and draining correctly for the next year or more. The tubs should help the fluid in his ear drain correctly and if they do get infected again, we can flush them out with ear drops instead of using antibiotics. Please keep Parker in your prayers.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Wilco: Kicking IU

A friend and I attended the Wilco concert at IU Auditorium last night. It was a great show, meant to kick off Little 500 week ("World's Greatest College Weekend").

Jeff Tweedy was in rare form, talking about how he'd been watching American Idol and made a couple references to this thread on the message boards about the rowdy IU students. Pat Sansone entertained the crowd with his over the top "Pete Townsend"-like guitar antics. Before the show we ran into John Stirratt in the parking lot. If I had had a CD with me I would have tried to get his autograph.

They had a couple of nice surprises in the setlist. They played the Yankee Hotel Foxtrot era b-side "The Good Part" live for only the 9th time. They also played one new song, "Walken (aka Talking to Myself about You)" which they debuted last September. Here's a live MP3 of the song from another show to download:

Wilco-Walken (live).mp3

Here's the full Setlist:

  • Airline to Heaven
  • Kingpin
  • Handshake Drugs
  • Shot in the Arm
  • At Least That's What You Said
  • Hell is Chrome
  • Spiders (Kidsmoke)
  • I Am Trying to Break Your Heart
  • Forget the Flowers
  • War on War
  • Jesus, etc.
  • Hummingbird
  • The Good Part (Wilco's "bossa nova stylings")
  • Walken (aka Talking to Myself about You)
  • Heavy Metal Drummer
  • Theologians
  • I'm the Man Who Loves You
  • Monday
  • -- Encore 1 --
  • Late Greats
  • I'm Always In Love
  • I'm A Wheel
  • -- Encore 2 --
  • California Stars

Monday, April 17, 2006

The High Cost of Free Parking

Bloomington was host today to Dr. Donald Shoup, professor of Urban Planning at UCLA. He spoke mostly about his book, The High Cost of Free Parking.His main argument is that "The cost of parking is hidden in higher prices for everything else. In addition to the monetary cost, which is enormous, free parking imposes many other hidden costs on cities, the economy, and the environment." Parking is only free to the driver. The cost is passed on to homeowners and renters and consumers in higher land costs, rent and product costs. He also argued that modern minimum parking requirements in our Zoning Ordinances help to subsidize the costs of owning and driving a car. His solution? Do away with mandatory minimum parking requirements and price public parking to meet the demand. Then use the revenue from public parking to pay for targeted infrastructure improvements in the neighborhoods that generate the revenue.

A bunny brought all this?

A bunny brought all this?
A bunny brought all this?,
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

Here's Parker with his gorilla/duck, trying to make sense out of the easter bunny.

Hey, get away from my ears!

Hey, get away from my ears!
Hey, get away from my ears!,
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

"Paul, dude, I can clean out my own ears, thank you!"

Who is this kid?

Who is this kid?
Who is this kid?,
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

"Hey Parker, what do you say? Let's make a break for it!"

Hey, man, are your parents as weird as mine?

Parker and Paul got a chance to play and compare notes on their parents on saturday.

Hat 2

Hat 2
Hat 2,
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

Hat 1

Hat 1
Hat 1,
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

Parker styling, wearing my hat. He doesn't keep hats on for more than a few seconds however!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

The Roaches Sell Out

Ok, it's true, I've succumbed to the all mighty dollar. The Roach Family Blog is now part of the Associates program. What does this mean for you, the reader: very little. You'll be getting the same news and opinion from the Roaches that you've come to love. However, if we blog about a product we like, you'll be linked to the page to buy it. Ok, you ask, how is this different than before? Now, The Roach Family Blog will get a share of's sales from referrals from this site. So, if we link to The Who's "The Who Sell Out" for instance, and you click the link and buy the CD, we'll get 4% of the sale. Or in this case, 40¢! So, we'll keep blogging and you keep buying, America!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Loungin' & Eatin'

Flickr Photo
Loungin' & Eatin',
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

Meeting the neighbors

Flickr Photo
Meeting the neighbors,
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

Parker meeting our neighbors' 12 month old daughter, Sophie.

What are you looking at?

Flickr Photo
What are you looking at?,
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

Parker and Cathy enjoying a beautiful spring day in Bloomington


Flickr Photo
Originally uploaded by jcroach.

I love this picture. It looks like Parker is stinking up the place, but really Cathy is just squinting into the sun.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Superhero Personality Test

Apparently, I am most like Superman. What this means, I have no idea.

Green Lantern
Iron Man
The Flash
Wonder Woman
You are Superman
You are mild-mannered, good, strong and you love to help others.

Click here to take the Superhero Personality Test

Thursday, April 06, 2006

(Parenthetical) Song Titles

Last month's Giant magazine had a short blurb about songs with parenthetical titles. It got me thinking about my CD collection and some of my favorite artists and songs. I found 17 songs in my collection with parenthetical song titles. Why do I care? Why should you care? Why didn't the artist stick with a shorter name? I world may never know.

  • (What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding - Elvis Costello
  • (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes - Elvis Costello
  • (I Don't Want To Go To) Chelsea - Elvis Costello
  • Pride (In the Name of Love) -U2
  • Stay (Faraway, So Close!) - U2
  • With a Shout (Jerusalem) - U2
  • Ultra Violet (Light My Way) - U2
  • I Got You (At the End of the Century) - Wilco
  • Outta Mind (Outtasite) - Wilco
  • (Was I) In Your Dreams - Wilco
  • Spiders (Kidsmoke) - Wilco
  • Teen Angst (What The World Needs Now) - Cracker
  • Murder (Or a Heart Attack) - The Old 97s
  • Damn, Sam (I Love A Woman That Rains) - Ryan Adams
  • Jesus (Don't Touch My Baby) - Ryan Adams
  • Sweet Lil' Gal (23rd/1st) - Ryan Adams
  • To Be Young (Is To Be Sad, Is To Be High) - Ryan Adams
Check out these blog posts about parenthetical song titles

Monday, April 03, 2006

Parker's Newest Trick!

Flickr Photo
Parker standing!
Originally uploaded by chmcelwee.

So Parker barely has crawling down, and has decided that isn't good enough. He has started pulling himself up on anything that he can reach! He had a few bumps and scratches this weekend from his adventures - but he is a trooper.

April Showers

It's been a severe weather filled weekend for the Roaches. First, on Friday we were just a couple of miles north of a tornado that touched down in Greenwood. We happened to be in Greenwood looking for a new car seat for Parker. Lucky it just missed us. On the drive home the storm lit up the sky with constant lighting behind clouds off in the distance. Then last night our power goes out at 9:30, in the middle of Desperate Housewives. And it's still not back on! I'm updating the blog via semaphore. On the ride into work I saw the problem. Three utility poles splinted in half less than a 1/4 mile from our house. I might have to go home and eat all our ice cream so it doesn't melt.

From John Buchanan's Flickr Set

Flickr Photo
To Work #9,
Originally uploaded by verycoolwinter.

John Buchanan has posted some interesting pictures on his Flickr set "A Walk to Work." He lives and works in Osuka Japan. This was my favorite. It's a beer vending machine on the street!