Max and Miles who, to Me, Will Always be Secretly Named "Gus"

The blog about Max and his little brother, Miles. Stunningly cute boys and future leaders of the rebel forces.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Dog Whistle

We have to thank Sean, the homeowner and landlord next door. First, for renting his place to Nick and Jen. And, second, for smashing up his front steps and leaving a pile of rubble in his driveway. The detritus of his home improvement project provided Double M Construction and Demolition with close to a half an hour of simultaneous, fight-free play time.

I'm starting to think that Max (and probably Miles) can channel a fair amount of Radar O'Reilly. Instead of helicopters loaded with wounded, these kids can detect concrete being broken and earth being dug from a mile away.

"Daddy, can we go see the excavator?"

"What excavator?"

"The excavator that will be working at the corner of 46th and 15th tomorrow at 2:31pm? I think there might be a concrete mixer there later, too."

"Oh! There's going to be a concrete mixer?! We're totally going!"


Continuing in our series of "People We Love", we recently had the pleasure of hosting, for one sweet evening, our super-awesome friend, Amanda, who was passing through on a cross-country road trip with her dad (who, admittedly, we may now like more than even the fabulous Amanda).

I had assumed that the boys, having spent most of their lives around their spectacularly beautiful and tantalizingly intelligent mother, would be, at least, politely interested or, at worst, dismissively unimpressed by the amazing Amanda. I pictured something along the lines of: "Oh, hello clever and attractive person. Have you met our equally glorious Mother? She is also quite frequently pithy." Or: "Augh! another hilarious, confident woman?! How many of these are there?!"

I suppose, had I thought about it for two seconds, I'd've seen what was coming. Yep, as has happened to other males throughout history, when exposed to something or someone inexplicable and fascinating, their brains and composure peed promptly into their diapers. Max began by trying to impress Amanda with some Krazy Karate moves. When that didn't work, he spit carrots on her. (That earned an over-my-shoulder-while-Max-screamed trip to his room.) Miles. Well, Miles, to his credit, did try to play it cool. He appeared pretty chill, there, in his high chair. Belying this exterior calmness, however, was the fact that all the food heading towards his face kept missing his mouth. He'd lift a handful of spaghetti, get lost in Amanda's eyes, it would land on his forehead and roll down his cheeks. Though, I do have to say: I've been on dates -- especially early ones with Katie -- when this came off as charming.

As evidenced by the photo, the real trouble started once our guests moved on down road. Miles, in his dismay, began some bizarre ritual of toddler keening and basically ran around the yard dumping everything he could grab into his hair; then smearing it all over his body.

Amanda and her super-cool dad drove off, blissfully unaware of the anguish (and traumatic hair-washing) they left in their wake. They're welcome back anytime, though. Amanda's dad can help me polish my wizened, bemused dad-face and, with enough exposure to Amanda, the boys might be able to get food in their mouths on their first dates.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

No Good Neighbors

Except for the guy that lived next door to our first apartment together, this was the guy who'd ask you for a ride to work if, in the morning, you ran into each other in the hallway. He'd then proceed to talk, talk, talk, talk your ear off. . . before you'd had your damned coffee. Eventually I got wise and just waited for him to leave every morning. Yes, I am that sad.

Except for that guy, we've been pretty lucky as far as neighbors go. There were the very stylish guys who collected antiques and were quiet in Pennsylvania; there was the super-hipster who worked as a chemist for Aveda; there was the goof-ball, postman/landlord who liked to get high and had a crazed killer of a giant-assed dog; and there were the sweet, racist couple who took very good care of us in what could've been the very scary mountains of North Carolina.

And then there were Nick and Jen. Nick and Jen who became ersatz baby-sitters on the fly; Nick and Jen who'd happily let the boys come into their yard and give Katie and I ten minutes to catch our breath or mow or paint the kitchen (again); Nick and Jen who were quiet, friendly and treated Max and Miles like favorite nephews. They were the best neighbors in a long line of good neighbors. No matter how many times they came out their back door, they always gave Max a little bit of their time. Let me tell you: that's a lot of "Oh! Hello, Nick!"s/Oh! Hello, Jen!"s. A LOT OF THEM. Of course, now they've up and moved away, off the the wilds of Anchorage, AK.

I'm probably jinxing ourselves in the worst possible way by simply posting this. 'Course, it probably isn't helping that, everytime the Landlord brings prospective, new renters around, we amp the boys up on M & Ms and send them outside, streaked with red marker and fake knives.

To our good friends, Nick and Jen, from all four of us, we give the heartiest of thanks and the best wishes for good luck on their new adventure.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I say No! No! No!

We've previously documented Max's substance abuse issues. Suffice it to say: Miles loves to copy his brother. . . to the extreme. Looks like we're going to have to pony up for another stint in Juice Box Rehab.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

The Magic Hour

They tell me, when you're shooting a movie, there's an hour or so before sunset when the light is crazy perfect: diffused yet bright; glowing everywhere. It's, you know, how they make Johnny Depp and Charlize Theron even bearable to look at for two hours.

Up here in Keillorsfauxburgville, folks who escape the big city for their lake cabins know there is an even more magic magic hour: magic-five-seconds-as-you-pull-into-the-boat-lift-right-around-sunset. When you go for a boat ride or come back home from fishin' at the right time, there's something that happens when all that light starts bouncing around off the boat and the water and the inside of the boat lift and coming through the translucent boat cover. It also helps that Pop-pop is retired now and has almost nothing to do except scrub his boat-lift canopy clean.

All of this is a long way of clarifying something: Miles is not as cute as he appears in this picture.

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