Friday, May 27, 2011

Spellcheck won't catch "Angles"

I've liked Ron Roenicke since he was with the Dodgers in the early 1980s, so I was pleased when he got the job as Brewers manager this season.

Still I was surprised when I saw the above graphic on CSN Bay Area tonight. I had no idea that there was a team called the "Angles," much less that Roenicke coached for them.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Friday, May 13, 2011

A letter to Charlotte

May 13, 2011

To Charlotte, on the day of her birth,

Hello, sweet girl. I write this as you are 10 hours old.

I have no idea what kind of woman you’ll be when you grew up, but I can guess. You are a calm baby and a friendly child who likes to be held. I am guessing you will be a loving person when you’re older.

You spent much of your first few hours looking around, taking it all in. You looked us in the eye when we talked to you. I suspect you’ll be an intelligent, inquisitive woman who likes to learn.

And I already love you, as I have from before the moment I saw you emerge (white and slimy!) from your mother.

Your mother and I are quite fatigued right now, as you might guess, so I can’t give you any magical platitudes about the person I hope you’ll be. But I do know that I never want you to lose that desire to learn new things. I do know I want you to continue showing the compassion and affection you already show. I also know I want you to try to do something for the good of the many, to be a person dedicated to moving the entire human race forward.

I’m almost 40 as I write this. By the time you’re the age I am now, I will be an old man (if I am around at all). But I am sure you’ll make me feel like my youth was well spent, even if it was all something that just led to my guiding you.

I’m hoping and trusting that I will be there to give you that guidance and that I will be around for all your important milestones. I know I will try. I also know that I will make mistakes. Whatever our relationship is like when you’re older, I want you to know that right here, right now, you and your brother are my crowning achievements.

Love, Dad

The birth of Charlotte Baker

My morning thus far:

5:32 a.m. — Wife nudges me. “No joke, I’m in labor.” Contractions about eight minutes apart.

5:50 a.m. — Calls to family. Had to decide what to do with our soon-to-be-eldest, as it’s “Super Sports Day” at his school.

6:15 a.m. — Claire calls Labor and Delivery at Kaiser San Francisco. “Sorry, we’re full up today.” Jaws drop. They call Kaiser in Redwood City, where space is reserved.

6:30 a.m. — More calls to family. Claire’s mom decides to drive down, sister-in-law will come to get Ian.

6:45 a.m. — Contractions getting hard and intense. Ian wakes up, come into our room and pretends he’s a cat. Claire humors him, then retreats into bathroom so he doesn’t see her in distress.

6:50 a.m. — “Where is everybody?” Claire asks. I help her downstairs. She has a hard contraction and makes me pull her around the corner so Ian can’t see.

6:55 a.m. — Auntie Vicki arrives to take Ian. She looks more worried that anyone else!

7 a.m. — Claire’s mom arrives. I yell down the hall, “Attention roommates, third time’s the charm! We’ll keep you updated!” (We had a pair of false alarms in the past couple weeks.)

7:05 a.m. — On road, southbound 280 to eastbound 380 to southbound 101. Claire wonders aloud, through gritted teeth, if we’ll make it. I make a quip about the cliché regarding police escorts.

7:25 a.m. — Blessed by easy traffic, we arrive at the hospital in Redwood City. Swell — there’s a lot of construction. I find the emergency entrance and pull up. I help Claire out of the car and, like a scene from a bad sitcom, her water breaks just as we step out. The upholstery thanks its lucky stars.

7:30 a.m. — Claire’s mom escorts her up while I park car. I wait at pedestrian light with a technician and we marvel at the number of jaywalkers in town.

7:45 a.m. — Claire is fully checked in. Nurse says, “This probably won’t take long.”

8:10 a.m. — The room is crowded. Nurses, student nurses, midwives, lab techs, anesthesiologists. It’s like a scene from a Marx Brothers movie.

8:35 a.m. — After nine months of pregnancy indicating she wanted to give birth au natural, Claire is hooked up to the epidural after a couple hours of actual pain. “Hey, I was in excruciating pain.”

8:40 a.m. — I get sweaty and light-headed thanks to a lot of stress, standing and no food. I need to sit down. Nurses temporarily turn their attention to me! (I'm fine.)

9:10 a.m. — Eight centimeters dilation. This is going faster than last time.

9:20 a.m. — Screaming, loud screaming (think Claire on "Lost") from room down hall. Not an auspicious sign. Then, like in movie, a baby's cries. "That was fast," we think. Nurse later comes in and says the woman down hall was so fast she was brought in by ambulance!

9:35 a.m. — I have time to blog. Next update will probably be after birth. Claire is doing fine.

9:50 a.m. — Things are calm. Claire has some minor objections to the text above, but a good journalist doesn't budge!

10:20 a.m. — Contractions picking back up. Not quite pushing time, but Claire thinks it'll be soon. Might have to sign off for a while. While update when able.

10:50 a.m. — Pushing for last 15 mins. All well, won't be long. Forgot how messy this was. Think I blocked it out of my memory.

11:08 a.m. — Claire nearly breaks my wrist during a contraction. Woman has a grip.

11:20 a.m. — Delivery Doctor finally arrives. Her name is "Rumble." Sadly, she wasn't introduced by Michael Buffer.

11:54 a.m. — Charlotte Kathleen Baker was born, 9/9 on the APGAR (no doubt a hint as to her future SAT scores), 20 inches even and 3840 grams (8 lbs, 7 oz). Everyone's good!

Below: Pics of Me and "Charlie" and a family photo.

Below: Charlie's first movie. Caution, she is a tad immodest in parts.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

New addition/edition soon!

It just occurred to me that I haven't yet mentioned on this blog that Claire is pregnant and due May 14! Claire, big brother-to-be Ian, and I are all very excited.

Of course, it's no surprise to anyone who follows me on Twitter! We're expecting a girl (provided the lady with the ultrasound was competent), and her name will be Charlotte Kathleen Baker ("Charlie" as a nickname). Of course, if you followed me a Twitter, it wouldn't be a surprise.

Claire, as seen above, is already full term and ready. We had a false alarm last week, trip to the hospital and all, but it wasn't time. Claire's nurse practitioner predicts sometime over the next week.

When it happens, time permitting, I'll summarize it all in the blog, just like last time.