My wife's birthdays depress me.
(whoa, ShankRabbit, you're such a dick)

Ok... hold on... let me explain, because it really isn't totally about birthdays as it is more about large holidays in which my wife should be the center of attention. 

First, you have to understand that my wife is amazing. I know that lots of men say that about their wives, but here me out - my wife is one of those wives that lots of men wish they had. "Well, not everyone has it as good as you...", I have heard many times before. 

Even her flaws, which like every human she has, just seem to fit well with my flaws. If I may quote some lyrics of a song I enjoy, "what's wrong with you is good with what's wrong with me"

And that is precisely why it's depressing. 

Whether self-inflicted or a pattern of middle class life, I feel stretched way too thin. There's always so much going on, so much poop to clean up, so many spills on the floor, so much work to do, so many last minute timelines, so many boxes to unpack (still... ugh). With everything that goes on, sadly, me pampering and giving the attention and love that my wife deserves many times comes second place. Crying kid vs. pampering wife? Yeah, probably the crying kid. Deployment for big job vs. nightly cuddles and tv? Yeah... probably the deployment. 

Sad, right? 

The fact of the matter is:

She deserves better than me. 

"Blah blah blah - you're such an attention seeking whore, Shank"... well yes... yes I am. But this is something I've always truly felt. Perhaps it's because I'm a terrible perfectionist. "Terrible" because mentally I demand perfection, but in execution I'm bumbling around in completion and actions. Most of the time I get away with it because I've become a master of shortcuts and smoke-and-mirrors. 

(Those of you closest to me are probably nodding your heads... "yeah... "... [senior art show cough cough])

But I can't fool my wife again and again - she's caught on. She knows. 

This especially smacks me in my face on big special days (full circle here). I have grand aspirations of fanfare, parties, long walks on the beach, far off vacations all to celebrate these moments in her life. But what it came down to was a weekend full of unpacking and putting together Ikea furniture, me working more than I should have, and a slaughtered, terrible breakfast. 

Happy. Freaking. Birthday. Enjoy your bland sausage.

I'm an overly lucky guy.

She's with me. She stays with me. She puts up with the most ridiculous jokes and lame actions ever conceived, handles me not always being perfect, supports me when I'm needy, and STILL loves me more than I could ever imagine. And for some, unknown, reason... she doesn't want to leave me!

The stars somehow aligned in some way where this is reality and I'm the lucky recipient of something I shouldn't have been given.

So I say this to you, Isabella:

When the world is on its last breath and in an instant more will grow dark, the gods or God or flying spaghetti monster will look down at a universe that lived its course and agree with one another that the love born from your heart and given freely to your friends, your children, and especially to me, was a love that was matched by no other. And they will learn from your soul and model their next universe with that love as a template of perfection.


Happy Birthday, my angel.


A few thoughts about the area:

By now I'm sure you've seen in the news the reports of the crazy heat wave blowing across the western US right now. Las Vegas hitting 116 - that's hot!. Pheonix getting scary records around 120? - that's also hot! 


As many of you know by now, my family and I are now residents of the great state of Washington (well, not officially yet... right now we're "just visiting" - but soon), and there is one thing I would like to convey  to my fellow Washintonians: 

86 degrees F is NOT hot!

In fact, 86F is quite enjoyable. Sure, most places don't have AC, but this area is filled with apartment and condo complexes, and most of these complexes have multiple pools and have common areas that do have AC. But why would you need AC? Because this weather is not hot. 

There's a nice gentle breeze, there's the ocean air, there are trees literally everywhere. The air is not humid, it's got a little moisture in it, but no where near humid by midwest standards. 

Whoever designed the highway interchanges should get a talkin' to:

Traffic is pretty bad over here in the Puget Sound area. Any by pretty bad, I mean horribly unessessary bad. Why is it unnessesay you may ask? As far as I can tell there are two specific reasons:

1. Many of the people are transplants from other countries. Microsoft, Amazon, etc are constantly recruiting from all over the world. This means smashing drivers from all different areas with different driving styles into one small little area.
2. The roads were designed by someone who maybe should have paid more attention in road design class.

Allow for me to ruin your eyes with my awesome MS Paint skills and describe how the roads are laid out here.


This is a perfect example of some craziness. Ok, so lets say the main highway is northbound 405. The highways up here have a dedicated car pool lane in the far left (or the far right if you're on the 520... consistency be damned here). This means that during rush hour, everyone who is carpooling is dying to zoom over to the far left as fast as they can. Which means is they're merging on from... say... the 520 - they are merging 5 times. 5 FREAKING TIMES. But of course, let's not forget about the people merging on from the left... yes... the left. Now, the people merging on from the left are NOT carpooling, which means that they have to merge twice so they get out of the carpool lane. 

Add all thing to humanity's innability to merge properly in the first place, and now you can see why traffic is horrible here. 

Ugh.. traffic.

copyright... uh... the makers of The Whole Nine Yards... or something.


Long time no post. 

I tend to do that when things are either a) super crazy or b) super calm. However, when things are just slightly off kilter is when I love to write the most. And right now, things are just ever so slightly off kilter. See, here's my life in the past few months. 

As a young pup right out of college until a few days ago I've worked for small companies who usually have the "big dog" client that keeps them viable and in business. That one client that found this small, service based company which they did everything and anything for. 

However, the two companies which I worked for in the past 10 years, both cases had that big company leave and it left those companies in shambles as the C levels scrambled around trying to figure out what their new identity was going to be. It was interesting to be apart of the two ecosystems because each company handled it completely differently. 

The first company hunkered down and tried to keep doing exactly what it had been, just with smaller clients. Well, it turns out you can't treat smaller clients like larger clients... they just don't like it. 

The second company turned into a proverbial chicken with its head cut off. Running everywhere except to a logical destination with its lifeblood squirting out of a small hole where its head used to be. We abused the word "game changer" and were promised "wheelbarrows of cash" on more than one occasion as the executive team kept coming up with the "next big thing". We were always "close to signing" the next huge contract which would drawf the huge players such as companies that rhyme with schmoogle or schmricrosoft. 

Can you tell a sales guy ran the last company?

But you know what? I was ok with it. I was ok with just riding the company into the ground as the plane spiraled out of control. I made decent enough money that I was certainly not lacking. The products that our engineering team cranked out actually did have potential. And my confidence in my ability had finally become solid enough that I knew the minute the plane did hit the ground, I'd bounce off and get another job with no issues what so ever. Yes, there was always the level of uncertainty... and there was a healthy fear for the financial well being of my family - but darn it, we'd be ok.

Then some kid tossed a fun little nugget over the cube wall... he'd just pushed me into a pool

It really wasn't as extreme as that. What it came down to was he was asked by a recruiter if he "knew anyone else who she could contact" - and he didn't even ask first - he just threw my name into the pool.

I went home that night and actually thought about the company in whose pool I was just thrown into and I had a battle in my head between the "safe" life I was living, and the "out of comfort zone" life that this new company offered me. I had to battle because on one hand I feel that my family always comes first and that means financially, time, health, everything and that's why I stayed where I was. However, persuing the life of moving to another company seemed selfish - it was all about me, all about growing my career and at the expense of what? Stability within my family?

So I did the only thing that any sane married man would do. I asked the wife. 

Well, she apparently has this thing were she wants me to be "happy" or some crap like that. Pfft... "happy"... I don't need to be happy - I need to be stable for my family even if that means unhappy in my career... it means I'm happy at home. 

Happy wife, happy life, right?

But my family feeds off of my emotions

And that was a hard lesson to learn for me. I would come home from work and would hate myself for being there, would feel disgusting at the oft times borderline unethical decisions that company made, and would be "mad"-ish most of the time. I would need time to "wind down" after work. Whether that meant drinking or working out. 

So I made the decision to actually start caring about this interview. I studied my little butt off, brushed up on my interviewing skills, and gave it my all. There were HR interviews, and tech interviews, and then 6 hours of in person interviews. They made dang sure that I was who I said I was and that I could provide for them some awesome skills. Although I didn't think I knocked it out of the park, I guess what I did was awesome enough to land myself a job. 

Not just a job... but a dream job. A job that I never in a million years thought I would have for a company that I thought was so way out of my league... but I got it.

Of course... what I didn't mention yet was that this job was located 1,400 miles away to the west. 

And that is why I'm on a plane.


I've been working my tail off recently to make some miracles on code-street happen. Big projects, high reward, high risk. So far the reward has been paying off very nicely. 

Because of that I was finally able to get back into a love of mine that I've had since college: photography. 

I went and got myself a new baby with some fun accessories

The Canon 60D

She's a beautiful little camera and does everything I've ever wanted in a digital camera without having to pretend like I'm some sort of professional. 

With that, I reactivated my Flickr account so that I can share the bazillion images that I will be taking. 


Boom: http://flickr.com/shankrabbit/



I don't like the open nature of the web when it comes to my family, so I have everything locked down for Friends and Family only. 

So get yourself a Flickr account and send me a friend request and I'll add you straight away. I just need to have control over who gets to see who my family is. 


I'm generally a nice person. I smile at people randomly. I use my manners. I hold doors for people even when they're just outside of the non-awkward distance to door holding. I give strangers the benefit of the doubt. I say my prayers. Kiss my wife and children and tell them that I love them frequently. I call my parents at least once every other week. I'm a "decent" guy. 

But there are some people... some people who I just can't get past. There are some people that I just can't bring myself to like anymore. I've tried, I've given in my all, but in the end I always have to fall back on the haunches of "you're just a bad person".

So here's a little online toast to the people I really don't like in life. Raise your glasses high with me!

Here's to you, person distracted while on your cell phone!

Your call is really important. It would have to be if you were driving one handed with the other hand on your phone. I would bet it is even an emergency situation where the person on the other end of the line has your children held hostage and has threatened to kill one of them if you hang up or stop talking. 

I can see that you've also been practicing your telepathic abilities seeing as how you changed lanes so quickly in front of me. I must be one of those stubborn minded folk who are not easily communicated with over the ether. 

So go on, cell phone driver - keep on that phone and make sure you save the world doing it. Nothing is as important as your conversation, especially when barreling down the highway at 75mph in a large, steel bullet. If I had to balance the necessity of my children's lives and your phone call - I certainly would be willing to sacrifice my children.

No wait, just kidding... why don't you just drive into that tree over there at a high velocity. I'm not saying I wish death on you - but I do wish you severe bodily harm that prevents you from ever driving again.


Here's to you exhausted and complaining parent!

You poor, poor thing - your kids are so evil and terrible. Seeing as they are so young, they've clearly been predestined by some mysterious force to climb into this world with the sole purpose of making your life hell.

Oh... wait... maybe you're a shitty parent and that's why your kids are shitty too. But please, feel free to tell the entire social media world how much your kids aggravate you - how bad they act - how much you just need your "other" to pick up the slack so that you can have some peace and quiet and a tall glass of wine. I love reading your latest twitter and blog about how triumphant of a parent you are for making it through just one more day with your hellions, how you are the conqueror of the year because no one else but you could handle the minions of Satan thrown to the surface to burn your ambitions and dreams to the ground. 

It's not the "shitty" part of you that bothers me. There are shitty parents everywhere, and hell, even I'm sometimes a shitty parent. The reason I hate you is because you write about it on the internet to every random person who would want to read it. But what you don't seem to grasp is that anything you put on the internet is around forever. 

Our kids are going to be way more connected to the internet then we ever could be. They are going to see everything... 

and here's the clincher as to why I hate you: your kids are going to see everything you wrote about them

Imagine you sit down at your computer and look up some history of your mom or dad on the internet... and YOU came across globs and globs of hate, whining, disgust, and bitching about how shitty of a kid you are. You'd be hurt... you'd start to mistrust... you'd go through emotional turmoil over it. 

I can't wait to hear about when your kids are teenagers and destroying you. Paybacks a bitch and I full intend to grab a bowl of popcorn and enjoy the show when it happens.

Here's to you, person who thinks waste expulsion is popular mixed media!

In recent years I've come to learn that women are almost more sloppy in the bathroom than men. If I would have been writing this post 6 years ago (also around the time I got married... huh... go figure) I would have segregated this only to the male population since that is all I have direct experience with... but turns out that some-freaking-how women are more messy. Now, everyone is included in this rant. 

Guys: You have a freaking gun... a pointing device... a god forsaken wand that aims. How in the hell do you pee on the floor? A urinal is normally a 2ft x 4ft target and you can't hit that!? Especially when you are practically standing inside of it when you go? 


I wear shoes, but I still don't like standing in your pee pee that somehow made it on the floor. Having pee shoes is not a highlight of my day. 

And why... WHY would you stand and pee at the toilet and not lift the seat?! Is one extra second all the troublesome to prevent my ass from having your wee juice all over it?

And women... my god... the horror stories I've heard...

Are you a mixed media bathroom artist? Then I hate you.