5 For Friday: Go Ask Daddy About Quicksand, Balls and Strikes, and Scary Movies

photo credit: JD Hancock via photopin cc
photo credit: JD Hancock via photopin cc

Finally, all the chicken wings are gone.

It didn’t take long. Jen and all her friends made quick work of them all.

Which is OK – I don’t need the distraction. The kids have a great lineup of Go Ask Daddy questions all ready to roll, covering everything from women’s football to trippy Beatles songs. They keep me busy. And on my toes.

The questions can be tough, like No. 5. I’ll probably have nightmares about dinosaurs tonight because of it.

Thanks, Grace.

1. Do you sink faster in quick sand if you move around?

photo credit: Cecilia Espinoza via photopin cc
photo credit: Cecilia Espinoza via photopin cc

Like it has for the talents of former SNL star Kristen Wiig, TV has greatly exaggerated the affects of quicksand.

Quicksand – a not-so-lethal combination of clay, fine sand and salt water – can’t pull you under completely. At higher stresses, it liquifies, causing any trapped body to sink. But you’re likely to sink only to your waist.

That doesn’t make for great drama. If you move around, you’ll sink faster. You should, however, wiggle your legs to make space between you and the quicksand for water to move into. This will loosen the sand, and you’ll be able to eventually climb out – with or without a vine tossed at the last moment.

If Kristen Wiig’s doing the Penelope gig on Saturday Night Live while I’m slowly descending into quicksand? I’ll take my chances with the sand.

2. Do they have girls’ football?

Good gravy – I just pictured you and your sisters in helmets and pads. The damage you could do … mainly to each other.

My friend Sara English played semi-pro football for the Carolina Cougars, and showed off her bruises to the sports desk at the newspaper where we used to work. The Independent Women’s Football League has teams in the U.S. and Canada, including two in the Carolinas – the Phoenix and the Queens.

The league has some cool helmets and really skilled players, not to mention sweet nicknames like the Nightmare, Wreckers, and Illusion.

A former client of mine, Katie Zellner, used to talk Packers football with me, and knows football. She also played for the Green Bay Chill in the LFL – the Lingerie Football League. Yeah, the play in lingerie. But the rivalries are real, and so are the hits.

I can argue for and against any uniform, in any sport and any league, and these are no exception, as a man and a dad. But football is football. Decide for yourself.

3. What’s the major difference in rules for softball and baseball?

Softball began your pop’s illustrious and laughable athletics career. Yep. It all started with a team called the Greeley Grapes. We sported red polyester hats, curiously, and I wore jeans and a big Seattle Seahawks belt buckle during games. The 70s rocked.

My favorite softball player is Texas A&M’s Jenna Stark; my favorite baseball player is Jordan Pacheco. In case you were wondering.

The three main differences are these:

  • Softball is played with a ball 12 inches in circumference; a baseball is 9 inches
  • Pitchers throw underhand in softball, off a flat surface, 45 feet from home plate; they throw overhand in baseball, off a raised mound, 60 feet, 6 inches from home plate
  • Base runners in softball must wait until the pitcher releases the ball to leave a base; in baseball, you can take off at any time

Both sports involve a lot of dirt, a good bit of spitting, but I believe baseball players scratch more than softball players. I have no scientific data to back this up.

4. What’s that Beatles song about drugs?

Song? How about six?

“A Day in the Life,” “Doctor Robert,” “Happiness is a Warm Gun,” “I’m Only Sleeping,” and “Tomorrow Never Knows” have all been suspected of drug-related origins. None of those songs appear on my fans’ Favorite Beatles Songs lists, honestly.

The most famous drug-suspicious Beatles song has to be “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds,” which is supposed to refer (see what I kind of did there?) to the hallucinogenic drug LSD. But, John Lennon said the song was about an inspirational lass named Lucy Vodden, who was gravely ill with lupus.

Most lyrics in question came from Lennon’s pen, it seems. But band mate Paul McCartney revealed in a book that his song “Got to Get You Into My Life,” thought to be a love song, wasn’t at all – unless you count Mary Jane as his love interest.

Here’s the trippy video to “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”:

5. Have you ever been really scared by a movie?

You had to bring it up, didn’t you?

My parents let me watch horrid things early in life, such as “Poltergeist” and “Faces of Death.” (The first can be blamed on me for sneaking in some HBO time, but the second? Those movies were rented. I’m scarred for life.)

But the movie that has given me the most nightmares is a bit embarrassing.

”Jurassic Park.”

And you know I love dinosaurs. Like, almost as much as baseball and cheese and Star Wars. But man, every time I see a Jurassic Park movie, I have bad dreams, about T-rexes with glowing red eyes.

And that’s even scarier than taking a blindside hit from Katie Zellner. Or even having to choose between quick sand and Kristen Wiig doing Penelope.

Crap. I’m so not going to sleep tonight.

What Sandy Hook Taught Me: Keep My Girls Close

photo credit: Kalexanderson via photopin cc
photo credit: Kalexanderson via photopin cc

Kiss your kids and hug them tightly tonight, you said, mom bloggers.

Reform gun-control laws, you said, concerned liberals. Outfit schools with armed guards, you said, National Rifle Association. In the aftermath of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in December, everyone had an idea of something to do.

Some said to ban assault weapons because who needs them, anyway, or to ban the term “assault weapon” because it’s unfair to those who love multitudes of rounds in their gun-firing experience.

What should I do, though, a low-middle class dad with three kids in two schools, a right-leaning registered independent who owns no firearms and could more easily match up Star Wars characters with their weapons than actually purchase ammunition?

Continue reading “What Sandy Hook Taught Me: Keep My Girls Close”