Saturday, March 31, 2007

I Am Running For Congress!

posted by John Blanco @ 9:43 PM


I am bursting with pride to finally announce this as this has literally been weeks in preparation. Dealing with this birth of my first son and all sorts of work-related issues has made it challenging, but Colorado Congressional laws restricted me from making this announcement until today.

I will be running for US Congress in 2006.

As a resident of the 6th Congressional district of Colorado (CO-06) for over 3 years, I have seen our current Representative, Tom Tancredo, use immigration as his platform in a district where we don't have that problem. I don't believe bombing Mecca will solve the situation in the Middle East. Bill Winter, who ran against Tancredo in 2006, and losing valiantly, has inspired me to try the same.

Another reason for announcing my candidacy is that Rep. Tom Tancredo will be announcing his run for the US Presidency on Monday. Our district is in need of leadership that will focus on the needs of this beautiful area of Colorado -- not be distracted by unaffected immigration laws and Presidential aspirations! We can't afford Mr. Tancredo's me-first representation no longer. Now let me give you a few reasons why I feel the most qualified to be our new Representative, and why I want your vote.

First, Congress today is too overloaded with doctors, lawyers, land sharks, elites, etc. For those who don't know me well, I am a professional software developer. This is a representation you will not currently find in the House of Representatives, or the Senate for that matter. I bring valuable C++ and Java experience which may come in handy for legislation concerning online poker, video game ratings, and the Internet. Do we really want Ted Stevens in charge of this?

Secondly, I am a recent graduate of Colorado State University. While I attended from 1995-98, I only received my degree in 2005 due to a change in graduation requirements. While most US Congressmen (and women) have law degrees that date back to the 1940's in some cases, I bring modern education and a breath of fresh air to the NCLB debate. No, Mr. Stevens, the Internet is *not* a series of tubes!

Thirdly, and finally, this is a career change I have been training in for quite a while. I am ready for this challenge. I have been following politics for 3 years now. I've ready many political books including Al Franken, Byron Dorgan, and Markos Moulitsas (sp?). These are the power players in today's new media of politics and my heroes. I hope to carry on their honor as well.

With this announcement comes my asking for help. Although the election is 19 months away, your financial support is needed. Please pledge $100, $50, $25, or whatever you can at my Web site, Blanco for Congress '08. In addition, I will need volunteers. Again, whatever help you can provide will be appreciated.

America has been dragged down by this Bush Administration and the Republicans whom have been in charge for so many years. Vote John Blanco for Congress -- for change.

Come on, people...

posted by John Blanco @ 6:12 PM


From a NEWSWEEK poll:

Seventy-three percent of Evangelical Protestants say they believe that God created humans in their present form within the last 10,000 years; 39 percent of non-Evangelical Protestants and 41 percent of Catholics agree with that view.



posted by John Blanco @ 12:17 PM


Why You Want Dems In Charge

posted by John Blanco @ 12:10 PM


Check out this whiny Republican who can't debate or defend his actions but instead has to fight to GET THE ARGUMENT AGAINST HIM STRICKEN FROM THE RECORD. (You only need to watch the first few minutes -- the Democart making his case, and then the whiny Republican.) Fiscal responsibility my ass. Have YOU SEEN THIS WAR?????

Why can't this Republican clarify his point instead of throwing a hissy-fit over what was said, truthfully, about him. With 4 minutes left, Lynn Westmoreland bitches and complains about "civility." Tell the American people why their taxpayer money is being wasted in boatload by the Bush Administration?

NOTE: At the end of the clip, you learn that the "gentleman from Georgia" has never visited Mississippi and seen the damage of Katrina.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Bailey + Bly = #1 Backfield

posted by John Blanco @ 7:37 PM


I didn't see this coming -- Dre Bly re-upped his contract with the Broncos, following last month's trade, which means that Bailey and Bly will be the Broncos backfield for the next 3 years. Bailey, of course, is the best cornerback in football. Bly is one of the best of the rest.

Now if only we had some pass rush...but, wow. Could see a lot of picks this year!! WELCOME BLY!

Sunday, March 25, 2007


posted by John Blanco @ 7:46 PM


Friday, March 23, 2007

First Thoughts On Being a Dad

posted by John Blanco @ 9:51 PM


For the first time in a long time, Friday doesn't feel quite like Friday. The days since Monday have strung together without any meaning besides bonding with my new boy. No work in the way, no plans in the way. Michele and I just spend each day exploring Cedric and learning more and more about him.

Today, we took him out for the first time. (Sorta like a car, eh?) He had his first visit with the pediatrician, Dr. Bob, and then went on a walk with us at the lake on Bowles and Wadsworth and to Babies R Us. Actually, he never did any lifting...he rode in shopping carts, and strollers and car seats all day.

Cedric, you lazy bum. ;-)

The days with the family are great. Aside from the doctor's appointment today, we've made no plans for anything, we take it one day at a time. Aside from Michele's parents, we've had no help from friends or family. (And we've gotten along just fine.) Heck, he even has a slacker uncle who has yet to meet him -- Kevin, Kevin, has anyone seen or heard from Uncle Kevin? Helllooooooooo?

But day to day, things are just great. :-) And along with the new youngling, in contradiction to what everyone will tell you, our lives are really just how they always were. We still dork on our blogs, I still play with new programming languages, Mobat and I are putting plans together for an upcoming Wii party (i.e., Mobat XBox 360 intervention!), and we get plenty of TV and radio time. Cedric, after all, is just a baby.

One of my new hobbies is to sit, holding the Cedrinator in my arms, whilst I read my "The New Father" book. It goes through the stages of the first year...and it's interesting to read about the things I readily observe of Cedric already, and the things I should expect to see.

A friend of ours who dropped by the hospital said to us, "Your lives will never be the same." I'm guessing he meant the things we'd no longer be able to do. And yes, there is surely a list of those things, a list I certainly worried about going into this. Yet, what I've learned in the last 4 days is that the list is a bogus one. I'll gladly trade it in.

Michele and I can't have our Friday-night dates like we used to. No. But, instead of dinner alone we get to share it with our new best friend.

Going to our monthly "Adventure Club" outings will be an impossibility with a little one. At best, we can go for short whiles and have Michele's parents watch Cedric for a while. But now, every day is "Adventure Club" for us -- and we're encouraged to do and learn new and exciting things in ways we never would have done before.

Anyone who has considered starting a family, or fears it, you should know that there is nothing to fear. You can't just go to a Chuck E. Cheese and observe some family where the parents are white trash or the kids are out of their minds and think, "I don't want that." No one does. But, if you're ever lucky enough to lie down in bed with your own little one asleep on your chest...even for a few minutes, it's a great feeling. :-)

Not one you would ever trade for anything. Indeed, life will never be the same.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Home Movies

posted by John Blanco @ 8:57 PM


Especially for my family in New York, here are some movies of Cedric. The first is his first check-up, just minutes after birth. The second is his first bath which came soon after. (Listen to the dialog, too.)

(Note: they are a little "squeezed" because they were filmed at 16:9, but YouTube only appears to show at 4:3.)

The Family Is Home!

posted by John Blanco @ 2:38 PM


Home, at last! Cedric is exploring his first home. Well, not so much exploring as still sleeping in the car seat. But once he wakes up, I swear it!

Some pics in the last day...poor Cedric had to undergo jaundis treatment. :-( Our friend Kevin stopped by this morning as well...always nice to have visitors, and Cedric needed the support. It was heart-beaking when he cried...the poor guy was so scared for a while. :-(

This pic is of Michele and the her midwife, Neko, who we just love. :-)

Michele's mom, now a second-time grandma.

On Wednesday and Thursday, Cedric had to endure the heating lamps to work off some pesky bilibrun.

Mom and baby...

Uncle Andy and baby...

Cedric in his first outfit and first car seat for the first time.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Cedric + Family Still In Hospital

posted by John Blanco @ 2:33 PM


We're stuck at the hospital another day as we've come to find out Cedric has a mild case of jaundis. They're hoping that a day under "the lights" will nip things in the bud, as his case isn't in a "danger" level yet but they want to take precautions.

I've come home to pick up some stuff and am headed back. Michele i very sad because Cedric is crying under the lights. It breaks your heart to see him like that. :-(

Thanks to our friends who came to the hospital to see the little guy. We love you guys and it reminds us why you're such great friends to have! :-)

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Cedric: The Day After

posted by John Blanco @ 9:58 AM


Cedric was quiet as could be yesterday as he was in his deep post-birth sleep. Last night, though, he woke up for a feeding at 10:45 PM and we didn't get him back to sleep tile sometime after 2 AM -- and it took Michele a few tries of having him fall asleep in her arms and then get him to his crib without waking up minutes later. It may have been too cold in the room...we raised the thermostat and that also may have helped.

So obviously, we didn't sleep too well, although after about 3, Cedric was quiet the rest of the night and morning. So, we're not too bad. Momma needs a nap though.

We're still so overjoyed with our baby! He, however, is not so overjoyed with us. You see, he was just circumcised. :-) He's handling it well, though. The next few diaper changes will take some getting used to. Which reminds me, I need to keep reading my daddy book! Afer the first day, things change quickly...and I'm not too sure what to expect yet!

Here are more pics:

Monday, March 19, 2007

Michele Is In Labor! (LIVEBLOGGING!!!)

posted by John Blanco @ 1:56 AM


9:53 AM Wow, what a morning...whew! I can finally sit down and relax a bit. The Cedrinator is sleeping in Michele's moms arms. :-)

So, we booked it for the hospital at about 3:30 AM. We got about 2 blocks when Michele's water broke! Things were going way too fast! Luckily, I had put a garbage bag down on the seat of our new car. :-)

We flew down 470 and 6th. I had my hazards on a lot...but thankfully there's not much traffic at that hour. Who'd a thunk??

Once we got downtown, we were coasting along Lincoln when we saw two cars that had crashed pretty darn hard. No one was on scene, though Michele later said she saw someone on their cell phone, but I just couldn't stop to help!!

We got to the Labor and Delivery entrance and Michele immediately vomited. She's so nice to have waited! She vomited some on the way to the door as I gathered the things we needed...she was NOT doing well!

We get upstairs, and we got kind of stalled answering questions before admittance. It took quite a few minutes, but I don't think anyone knew how far along Michele was -- and neither did we. They took Michele to an interim room to "see if she's ready to be admitted". They checked her out...DILATED 7 CENTIMETERS!

Holy crap.

She vomited some more and they wheeled her to the delivery room. They checked her out again because she had a lot of pressure. 9.5 CENTIMETERS!!! Michele was cruisin'!!!

Not even 5 minutes later, they said to her that Neko, the midwife on call, would be in in 15 minutes, so let them know if she needs to push. Well, she needed to push.

Luckily, Neko made it, and Michele pushed for about an hour before baby Cedric was born. Official time was 6:44 AM! He weighs 7 pounds, 14 ounces, and is 20.5 inches long. :-)

9:04 AM I'm uploading pics! Michele gave birth completely naturally. Unfortunately, she tore her cervix a bit so they had to fix her up and part of that was a spinal. Poor Yog!! :-( Cedric is soooo cute!

6:44 AM Cedric is born!!!!!

3:23 AM Headed for the hospital.

3:10 AM Calling the midwife.

3:05 AM Report from the wife is that a dull ache is pretty constant, but the contractions are more regular. This seems consistent with the last two nights, where things kicked off with rapid pains and cramps, but then got regular. We have the radio on as I'm scurrying around the house. Cimbi is meowing. He suspects something. I hope the baby's not coming out yet?!?! :-)

2:57 AM Michele is really in labor this time! She's officially past her due date, and at around 2:25 or so she started feeling real labor pains. They are definitely strong this time, though a few rapid fire ones are causing us not to be at the 5/1/1 pace. We're continuing to time whilst I get ready. Unlike the last two nights, though, these don't just tickle.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

The iRack Looks Unstable!

posted by John Blanco @ 8:06 PM


These people are blind to what's happening...

posted by John Blanco @ 6:32 PM


What is wrong with this statement from a war supporter:

Michelle Barish said she had sent a gas mask to her brother, a soldier soon to be deployed to Iraq, but was concerned that cutting funds was not the right way to bring the war to an end.

“If they cut off funding, does that mean I’m going to have to send a bulletproof vest and care packages?” she asked.

Lady! You already ARE having to send these items to the soldiers! Where have you been the last 4 years?? Don't you find it disturbing that you are having to buy equipment already -- and they ARE funded?!?!?!

The war is a joke. Bush refuses to end it because of the political fallout. These are the most politically charged years ever in our history. When will sense take over?

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Cedric's Italian Side Wins Out

posted by John Blanco @ 9:24 PM


While Michele and I hoped for a St. Patrick's Day baby -- just for the fun of it -- Cedric's Italian half declined. :-) So, for now, we're still a couple. The midwife says she's close however for reasons you'd really not like to know.

But who really knows with these things? I sure don't. :-) I wonder how much sleep I'll get...hmmm....

Michele Is In Labor! (False Alarm!)

posted by John Blanco @ 1:49 AM


2:21 PM Michele has been feeling rather crappy, but she's not seeing the contractions. We're gonna go out on a walk. Her mom seems to think she'll be ready tomorrow, perhaps based on her own experience and what Michele went through this morning. The bags are still packed for now. But I'll call this session for now. Another update tonight. :-)

10:10 AM The muffins and eggs were crazy delicious. We're now putzing on the computer. For now, plans are called off. If something happens, I'll continue blogging. If not, I'll rename this blog and we'll wait for next time. :-)

9:20 AM Michele is in sore, hurting, back pain, contraction mode. I'm not sure where we are on timings, she's too miserable to say. We're going to have some breakfast. I'm sure english muffins and eggs will make her feel better. (Not.)

3:43 AM The midwife says we should wait until the contractions are stronger. So we're gonna stay here until that happens. Good, we can get some sleep. Well, I can anyway, right? Am I right?? ;-) Everything is packed and ready except my computer, obviously. We're going to lay down and if I have any updates, I'll post.

3:31 AM We've called the midwives. Waiting for the call back. Might be 10 minutes from heading out. I am in major nesting mode...cats taken care of. Garbage. Toiletries. The list we put together is helping, I'm in a panic. ;-) Phone!

2:49 AM Contractions are being measured at one ever 4-5 minutes, lasting a minute. This has been ongoing for almost a half hour. We're excited and certain we'll be heading to the hospital in a half hour more. Michele is showing whilst I get everything ready!!

2:30 AM Michele is very uncomfortable and we've started timing contractions with my Nintendo DS. They are approximately a minute long and seem to be matching the 5/1/1 pattern.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Still on the Clock

posted by John Blanco @ 7:53 AM


We're now 3-4 days from Michele's due date, depending on who you listen to. :-) Still waiting. Sometimes it feels like it will never happen, which is of course ludicrous. The odd thing is, and I'll say it again, it feels weird that we just watch TV or play games or mundanely cook dinner...we're gonna have a baby ANY DAY!


Anyway, the days have been filled up with lots of useful stuff as well. We recently had a little "shock and awe" while doing our taxes this year. RUH ROH! Caught us off guard, so we're having to recover a bit by putting together a very low expenditure March...and kicking ass doing it. :-)

I'm also doing my usual side work, though not as much as there used to be. Either it will pick up or I'll have to find some other work to keep me busy. I'm playing with something new, too. :-) it may even lead to said work...albeit slowly.

I also solved Phoenix Wright 2, which is the second game in one of my favorite video game series' ever. It was great as was the first game. I can't wait for 3! :-) Playing Cooking Mama now and Brain Age again. Really fun! We also bought SSX Blur for Wii. That is a delight...and it's been fun seeing reviews of the game where the wussy-ass reviewers just can't handle the controls and bitch about it. Sorry guys, you are what we called "the past." Some of us keep up with the times -- you are NOT it. :-)

Oh, and Glenn and Danielle sent the cutest thing yesterday! It's a onesie that says "This is How Cedric Rolls" with a pic of stroller in the middle. Cuuuute! :-) Thanks guys!

Otherwise, back to waiting for "the phone call"... :-)

Saturday, March 10, 2007

You Bet Your Ass!

posted by John Blanco @ 7:58 PM


Fox News Vice President David Rhodes responded to the debate cancellation with a written statement saying owns the Democratic Party.

You won't find many bigger advocacy groups, David. That's because we REPRESENT Democratic ideals, jackass. Have you seen the psychopaths who run the Republicans? The voters sure do.

Friday, March 09, 2007

'Ears To The Doc!

posted by John Blanco @ 9:31 PM


Yesterday, when I arrived at work, I had the oddest feeling going on in my ears. I felt like I was on an airplane, and I was trying to pop my ears. (Pop? Unpop?)

After about an hour, they felt popped, but then I had this overwhelming urge to get my hands on a Q-tip. Unable to get my hands on one during the work day, I suffered the whole day as if I had dirty, dirty ears. By the time I got home, I was so eager to clean my left ear (the right ear had soothed a bit) that I ran up the stairs to my bathroom to get that sweet, sweet relief. (The Q-tip!)

Well, the whole day of waiting was a let down. The Q-tips, they do nothing!! But Michele had a solution: a solution! "Peroxide in you ear, now!" she exclaimed. Now, normally the thought of lying on my side and having my dear wife poor liquid into my ear and telling me to sit still for 5 minutes...yeah, that wouldn't stand.

But I was desperate! So lie down I did.

The feeling was torturous. It's like that feeling you get when you get out of the pool and there is water on your ear drum. TIMES A MILLION! Amazingly, I sat still and merely squirmed the whole time.

After 5 minutes, I mercifully got the stuff out. But, things weren't right. I felt partially deaf. For the rest of the evening, I tried to leak dry...and figured overnight it would get better. But it didn't, and while I was at work this morning, I asked Michele to make a doctor's appointment for me.

My ear improved a bit over the day, but I wanted to make sure all was going to be OK, so at 3:10 I was at the doctor. He examined my ears and told me the news. "You're ears are dirty."

Well, so maybe my cold from last week caused it. Anyway, they had to "clean my ears" and let me tell you something: pray you never hear the words. :-/

Let me describe an ear cleaning. First, they put a "detergent" in your ears and let it sit for 5 minutes. This was actually quite pleasant. The solution was cold, and soothing. I actually liked it. Maybe I can buy some at a store, eh?

Then, the nurse actually comes back in. (Yes, the nurse did the work...the doctor's job was easy I say!) She rinses out the solution a bit and then takes out a tool that I can only describe as A DEVICE FROM HELL. It looks like an ear scope, thing thing they use to look inside your ear, except with one modification: a hook scraper.

Yes, she scraped shards of wax (I know, it's gross, but grow up...) from my ear with a few strokes, and it hurt like holy hell. She did this in both ears.

For the left ear, though, the scraping was not enough. It had to be rinsed. She pulls out what is essentially a water gun. Whilst I held a bucket under my ear, she sprayed. The first moment is glorious. Warm, luscious water pulsating in my ear, like a lovely enema.

After the moment was over, it was holy hell again. The water butting up against my ear drum, and yet I can't pull away. It was not a comfortable feeling. Yet, it was better than the Peroxide the night before. :-)

My ears feel better now, though they still ache slightly from all they have gone through...Q-tip attacks, Peroxide bathings, detergents, ice picks, and squirting. They need a day to rest. Whewwww...


In other news, I finished Phoenix Wright 2. This means I have many, many months of waiting around for Phoenix Wright 3 -- stuck in depression -- so I can play more of this glorious series. DAMN YOU CAPCOM FINISH IT NOW!!!!

In the meantime, I'm forced to entertain myself by playing on my computer, going to Dave and Buster's, and having a baby in a week. Hopefully these things will pass the time quickly so I can once again enjoy Maya, Phoenix, Miles, and the other fun characters in...OH MY GOD CEDRIC IN ONE WEEK!!!!!!!

I just can't wait!!!! :-) Remember, stay tuned for LIVEBLOGGING!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Jesus H. Christ Someone Save Me!

posted by John Blanco @ 7:03 AM


Oh, I don't care if anyone at work reads this. :-) What a frusterating project I've been on! I can't go two consecutive hours without our project becoming unbuildable or unrunnable. I have NEVER, EVER, NEVER, EVER, NEVER, EVER in my life had such a low productivity percentage.

We make so little progress. Daily.

So again, the app won't run. Our tech lead is having issues with Clear Case that cause his project files to get wiped. All of us have spent literally entire days fighting issues...not with the code...with just the tools and getting a working build.


God I hate this project.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Why I Don't Vote GOP

posted by John Blanco @ 8:09 PM


I've had people ask me over the last while why I am a Democrat. I correct them by saying that while I do vote Democratic, I wouldn't vote for a party over a candidate. Aligning yourself with a party, maintaining a blind faith, is ridiculous.

The reason why I have registered as Democrat and volunteer for Democrats is simply because that's the system we live in today. It's a two-party system, unfortunately.

But, why do I vote for Democrats?

I vote for Democrats because I have four strong beliefs:

  • I believe in destroying unfair prejudice.
  • I believe that all responsible Americans should receive healthcare.
  • I believe our greatest investment is in public schools.
  • I believe our most moral investment is in renewable energy.

I can go all day about the last three, but this blog will focus on the first. Today's GOP is a big tent, much like the Democratic Party. Unfortunately, there are some very sketchy groups in the GOP's tent that I not only can't support, but I can't even define as "human."

One of these groups is the Evangelicals. To the real Christians out there, I'm sorry. This group has smeared your name. When I was young, I was a Catholic. When I got older, I stepped away from religion with all due respects. Nowadays, I see this group as doing something completely dangerous: merging church and state. You can see me dry heave when I see a so-called Christian with a bumper sticker that says "Bush/Cheney".

My response? You can't pick and choose your sins. How many times have you seen someone call homosexuality an abomination, but they have no problem enjoying pre-marital sex? These are the kinds of people that pick the sins they aren't interested in and call themselves better than those that "commit" them.

Hey, Mr. Dobson, before you call me an abortion-lover, remember what they say about he who cast the first stone...

Now, enter the queen, Ann Coulter.

Ann Coulter was born and raised in Conneticut. She is a gigantic hypocrite that puts all other hypocrites to shame. She wrote a book called Godless. She wrote a book called Slander.

This is a woman who has advocated for the assassination of Bill Clinton. This is a woman who calls Al Gore -- married with children -- a homo. This is a woman who is single herself with no children.

And now, check this out:

Coulter Calls Edwards a Faggot

And this is my problem with the GOP. They support this woman. They love her. While they point their fingers at Michael Moore and Al Gore and George Clooney, they cheer this lady on. I don't care what your politics are, but there is a clear difference here. While you might dispute global warming (you live in fantasy), or Farenheit 9/11, or the situation in Darfur -- you are free to debate with these characters.

Ann Coulter, on the other hand, just loves to smear smear smear to the point it makes no sense. Calling people "faggot" and "homo"? Think about the people who throw these words around...

Until members of the GOP denounce this woman -- which has never happened -- they never get a vote from me. And the sad thing is, there are more just like her.

Two Weeks' Notice

posted by John Blanco @ 4:38 PM


Two weeks left til Michele's due date. HOLY FREOLE!!!!! :-)

Friday, March 02, 2007

Talk About An Unlucky Streak :-(

posted by John Blanco @ 11:02 AM


Michele and I's streak of bad luck has continued full force into week 3. Here are the events of the last three weeks, with the last two having happened yesterday alone:

  • My car died while Michele was driving, stranding her. $400 to fix.
  • Michele's car failed to start. (We fixed this ourselves, luckily.)
  • I got sick and missed 2 days' worth of work.
  • Our garage door broke down. $200 to fix.
  • I accidentally knocked my work PC over and the hard drive crashed -- lost everything!
  • Got Michele's W2, added it to our filing -- and we went from nice refund to ugly owe. :-(

Yes, yesterday goes down as a miserable, miserable day. But we keep fighting forward...and we're only two weeks away from Cedric's due date. So keep yer chin up! :-)