Thursday Thirteen – My 13 Most Memorable Posts of my first 900 Posts.

So this is my 900th blog post here at The Urban Daddy.  

A lot has happened in the time it has taken me to write 900 posts here.  3 children, 8 years of marriage, a lot of education and thankfully, my writing has improved too.  I’ve noticed that people actually read stuff I have written and I’ve started a professional tax / management / social media blog which has just over 100 posts on it, so I won’t bore all of you with that kind of yucky stuff here.

This post was actually ready last Monday, but I decided to wait until Thursday so I could capitalize on the Thursday Thirteen theme, but along the way I got my ass thoroughly kicked by a flu which has been slowly rolling through our household.  My son Stewie started with it – received an anti-biotic – and still 5 weeks later coughs like a chain-smoker.  Then my wife and daughter got hit around the same time, Boo had horribly goopy and runny eyes and had trouble sleeping at night.  My wife, the woman who laughs off strep throat, had it and tried to rest where possible but both of them still cough and sniffle 4 weeks later.  

As for me… It killed me.  I’m on day 8, 5 of those days without a voice which has never happened to me before, and for three of those days my head is stuffed and I cannot hear out of my left ear.  It throws off my balance.  But the coughing is the worst and at times I felt like I was going to herniate another disc in my back.  I think my abs might be in better shape after this, to be honest, but I’ve been pretty useless for over a week – fever, chills, sweats, exhausted… I’m so done with being sick.

So instead of letting another day fly by, I am tossing up this post, which is a list of the 13 most memorable posts to me, on this blog.  I hope you will take some time and check back to some of the earlier ones to see how much has changed along the way.

So please sit back, turn the calendar back to 2004, and be prepared to read the 13 most memorable posts to this Urban Daddy of his first 900 posts.

1) This is my first post on this blog.  Have to start somewhere, right.

2) Linus was born and we missed a major world tragedy in the process.  Had to write about it.

3)  The re-birth of my blog and my first angry rant at the TTC and other stupidities.  I got great feedback on this post and it gave me confidence to be myself online, to blog smartly and continue to point out how much I detest stupidity.

4) My first Thursday Thirteen from way back in 2006.  (Loved the templates back then).

5) Owie!!!  Our kitten arrived and back then it seemed like a great introduction to the family.  Now my kids look at that kitten, then look over at the adult-sized cat on the couch and wonder how that happened.  “Did Owie eat that little kitten?”

6) I reposted this speech from the United Nations, an organization I believe is corrupt, useless and anti-Israel and by doing this I pretty much came out as being Jewish – something I had not really done before just because I didn’t feel like fielding comments from bigots and racists.  Since that powerful post, and I hope that you do read this post, I have posted more and more as a means to educate people and to continue to stand up for what is right, just and fair.

7) Child #2 Arrives!  Hello Stewie.

8) First post about me…  I guess in always hiding behind a name, it was easy to never post about myself, but this post changed everything.  Since this post, I even got a name; Warren.

9) I posted about the day I completed my graduate school for my MBA which I started 3 days after Linus was born.  Work… School… Children.  Exhaustion.  It was a great ride, a ton of work and an opportunity to finally leave the government for the private sector.  I owe my wife and family a ton of gratitude for putting up with me studying while at the cottage, late nights at the kitchen table and for being downright cranky and surely during the process.  I also got a ton of A’s and a couple A+’s which I had never achieved before so that was sweet too.

10) This was my first “overheard on a Monday” post where I realized after a couple years that if I arrived at the office before 7:30am, that I could listen to my two neighbours talk about their weekends.  I used to tune them out and get right to work until one day I realized they were talking nonsense, something about double-reverse osmosis, so I called them on it – brought in my wife the chemistry teacher to back me up, and from there I had gems for my blog like no one else.  These are must read posts, as well.

11) The First Urban Daddy Official Canadian Coffee Shop Rankings.  I’m on year 4 currently and have received feedback and Twitter love from all the main chains, Country Style, Starbucks Canada, Java Joes, Tim Hortons and Timothy’s.

12) Boo is born!  Insert huge sigh of relief that this one is a girl, and please book the vasectomy appointment…

13) My absolutely most popular post ever.  On the Ontario election.  My views on this post were 10000% more than any other post, and some of my comments were tweeted along the live election feed of CP24.  I felt engaged.  Now, however, that total mocks me, as I get closer and closer to it, but it will be a long time before I can reach it again.

Thank you for being along for the first 900, and I look forward to many more posts and some great comments and contributions from all of you.

Honourable mentions:

My many posts on the Canadian Live-in Caregiver Program.

My series of posts on IVF, highlighted below for their critical importance in this day and age;


Toilet Humour from a 2-Year-Old

Berries (Photo credit: SeanMcTex)

My 2-year-old daughter Berry has quite the personality and being the third child, she seems to have picked up the seriousness of Stewie, and the goofiness of Linus.  This was her conversation with a member of this urban family today when she whipped open the bathroom door and found them on the toilet.

Berry: “Are you peeing and pooing?”

Anon “Yes, can’t you tell?”

Berry: “The poo is stinky but the pee is okay.  It’s fun.”

Anon: “It’s fun?”

Berry: “You can play with pee, but you cannot play with poo.  It’s yucky.  You can make eyes with pee, and smile with pee and play with pee.  Put a hat on pee and take pee to the park.”

Anon: “You cannot play with pee, you cannot take pee to the park and you certainly cannot put a hat on pee.  On a pea, maybe, but not on pee.”

Berry: “SILLY!  Yes you can.”

Upon overhearing this conversation, I think I need to investigate this further.  I’m glad she knows you don’t play with poo, however I’m not sure if someone has been telling her it’s okay to play with pee or if she’s just showing her toilet humour.

Crazy kids!

How did you spend your weekend?


It’s Monday.  Man that weekend went so fast!  With kids programs, and putting together all the Ikea shelving we bought last week, there was no time to rest, relax or blog.

There is so much to catch up on, I don’t even know where to start.  So I’ll start with bullet points and expand where necessary;

  • So Libya killed Gaddafi and the new rulers, propped up by many nations around the world, are bringing in Islamic rule, Sharia law into Libya.  Not good for the Christians or Jews there.  Already the new government is booting out the Jewish residents and denying any changes to the Synagogue in Tripoli.  Can you say Nazi Germany???  My wife and I have been in Poland where Hitler did the same and used the Synagogues as horse stables.  How nice…
  • Did they really need to kill Gaddafi?  They had him, his was begging to live.  I think having him alive to see the citizens he tortured taking his possessions is enough torture, no?
  • So after having what I thought was a terrible karate class, Linus was rewarded with a stripe.  Now he only needs one more and he can grade for his green belt.  All this is moot because he hates the classes – they are slow and he loves playing around and being goofy – and he really only uses his correct techniques when punching his brother at home.  If he displayed that same form and intensity in class he’d be on his purple belt!
  • Stewie on the other hand, who just turned 5, was moved up to the yellow belt class with kids 6 years old plus.  He’s not developing in the lower class and unlike distracted Linus, Stewie is VERY focussed and wants to move up… NOW!  They’ll be in the same class by January.
  • On the cute front was watching Linus and Stewie teaching Berry karate.  Seeing her making the moves and yelling Key-yi was hilarious.
  • Speaking of Berry… She’s potty training.  Thank goodness.  Sure, she’s not 2-year-old until the end of next month, but we bought her Hello Kitty panties and to wear them she has to sit on the potty.  I hope all this potty sitting translates into no diapers.  I’m getting tired of the cloth diapers – the diaper wraps are showing their age.  But a huge thank you to Comfy Cotton in Markham for getting my kids potty trained at 2 1/2 and 3 1/4.  Let’s see how quickly the girl gets moving.  I know having a cold wet diaper next to their bottoms was the major reason for the push.
  • On the weekend along with karate, the kids helped me take down the Sukkah.  Which kids?  Linus and Berry, of course.  Linus shlepped the heavy metal brackets from the backyard to the storage under the front steps while Berry helped him sweep the leaves off the patio.  Linus was awesome.  Such a big boy.  And no, the gate was not open enough for our neighbour to see it and threaten to “sue” us.  He was out with family.
  • I let the boys put up the Halloween decorations this year.  I looked and they did an awesome job.  They said we need more decorations and I think because a neighbour has 30 life-sized zombies on his front lawn.  His house gets converted into a cemetery and compared to that, our house does suck.
  • I signed up to play ball hockey this winter.  I received a call from the captain and he seemed interested but has not called back to give me the details of the first game.  I know the team name and where the games are played, however.  I wonder if he was having second thoughts after finding out I was 40?!?  I didn’t mention to him that in 20 years of playing my team has won 4 league championships and more recently, the teams I have joined have gone from giving up more than 5 goals a game to less that 3 goals per game and in those games I’m playing even strength, power play and penalty killing.  I join the rush and am a plus-player.  Oh, well.  This Thursday is the first game and my wife and I have theatre tickets.
  • Thinking I had free time, I have proven it is impossible for me to say “no”, by joining the Boy Scouts to be a leader in my son, Linus’ Beaver troop.  It’s Wednesday nights, and after being there for one meeting I felt they needed additional support to keep the kids in line.  20 kids aged 5, 6, or 7 can be crazy.  Plus I was a Beaver, Cub, Scout and Venturer… I signed the application form and it needs to be sent for reference checks and a police check and then I’ll be good to go.  My Dad was my leader and he would be so proud of seeing Linus in Scouting.  Oddly enough, Stewie does NOT want to join Beavers as he doesn’t want to “wear a costume”.  OY.
  • Visit number one to the Holistic Naturalpathic Doctor resulted in me now taking a crap-load of supplements.  I have 5 bottles with drops, one bottle of seaweed pills, and 4 other pills.  The good part about them is that the Glyco Support is keeping my blood sugar at a constant level and I feel great all day.  No ups and downs.  My temper is in control and I don’t cry watching Grey’s Anatomy.  The most difficult challenge for me, however is going to be getting more sleep and eating the diet she wants me to eat for my blood type, which I found out was A+.  No beef, no dairy, no wheat, no coffee…   I know I’ll lose weight but I don’t know how much of this I can pull off.
  • So karate, swimming, Beavers… No wonder we spend all weekend cleaning and resting instead of heading out to do stuff as a family. 
  • So I was up until almost 1am last night organizing toys in the basement, putting them in the correct bins.  Care to guess how long it will take before stuff winds up in the wrong bins???  That drives me crazy!  I’ll bet they’re in disarry right now!
  • I saw that 26 members of the Toronto lingerie league football team have left the team as a result of bad coaching and “poor equipment”.  I have not paid attention to this league because I don’t get football, but these athletes are playing in a bra and panties, no?  So if that’s what you signed up for, how can you complain about the equipment?  I understand the helmets are hockey helmets and not football helmets.  If they are that concenred about safety, then the league needs to get these girls elbow and knee pads too.  If it’s supposed to be real football, make it safe.  Leave the wardrobe malfunctions to attract the audiences, but keep the girls safe.
  • Under the category of EWWWWW; I am always after my boys to not pick their noses and then put their fingers in their mouthes.  Tons of kids do it and it’s gross.  This past Sunday at karate took the cake as a girl sitting beside Linus picked her nose, then immediately sucked it off her finger.  Then went to the next nostril, and into the mouth.  But what made it super-ewww, was when she wiped her nose with the back of her hand, then I had the “pleasure” of watching her see there was nose-stuff on her hand, and then see her lick it all off the back of her hand.  UGH.  Sorry.  Had to share!
  • I hate, hate, hate that when I’m trying to put gas into my car, the #$%^&^% machine tells me “pump is ready” and stupid me clicks the handle and it’s not ready.  It’s never ready.  Why can’t the message wait 2 seconds then say it’s ready when it’s actually ready… Drives me crazy!
  • And finally, have you ever noticed that replacing cash with debit cards, and credit cards, etc. was intended to make it “easier” for us to pay for things, but it’s not!  With PIN’s and chips, swiping and passwords, you now need a friggin computer science degree to pay for a loaf of bread.  Cash please!

Thursday Thirteen – a little late.

Guest blogger Elliott Hurst, CEO of interactive music technology company Supernova ( strikes again with a surprise Thursday thirteen.

Here is @supernovelliott


As the owner of a growing business, we frequently talk about how to not only build the business, but build the brand of the business as well.  A brand is a promise.  A brand is something that the customer has certain expectations of, and above all, trust.  So it got me thinking of great brands to emulate and take notes from.  And being a proud Canadian, I thought I’d start with Canadian brands.  Brands that are uniquely Canadian.

Top 13 Canadian Corporate brands (not including individuals ie Wayne Gretzky).  What / Who would make your list?

In no order:

1. Tim Hortons
2. Blackberry (RIM)
3. Canadian Tire
4. Toronto Maple Leafs / Montreal Canadiens pick one or both
5. Cirque du Soliel
6. Lululemon
7. TD / RBC pick one or both
8. Roots
9. Air Canada
10. Rogers
11. Muchmusic
12. Molson Canadian / Labatt Blue pick one or both
13. Shoppers Drug Mart

Making this list was not as easy at it appears.  Originally I had Just for Laughs in my list as well as Supernova but removed them for other, better know brands.



Some random stuff you will probably discuss at the water cooler, kitchen sink or breakfast table…

So my new blackberry talks to me. Out of nowhere, I must press a button and the fucking thing starts talking to me, asking me to issue a voice command and when I yell back at it, “Shut the fuck up” it calls one of my colleagues… Each and every time, same guy. I think I need to find a different swear word for it.
For some strange reason by year and a half old daughter HATES the bath. Sure, it’s been coming over time but now she breaks out into a cold sweat whenever we say “bath” or “shower”. She also hates the morning poo cleanup which I think is a result of the cold wipes in her girly bits. I’d hate that too. Last time I went to clean her she said to my wife, “Bad Daddy”. Great.


I see Canada Post wants to strike… Overall volume is down 17% from 2006, they have a 3.2billion dollar deficit, yet the unionized workers want a 3.3% raise this year, and 2.75% in the next 2 year, in addition to job security. As Jack Layton would say, “hashtag fail”. It’s too bad Rob Ford is just the Toronto mayor and not the Prime Minister of Canada. Starting wages are $23/hr and would be $26/hr. #Shame. The workers should realize postal carrier are going the way of the VCR and Canada Post should find a way to keep the mail moving while sorting out this mess.


Actual conversation between myself and a former colleague at the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency).

CRA: I’m bored.

Me: I could use some help researching some tax matters

CRA: Naw! I don’t wanna work.

Me: I really could use some help. I have some tough aged matters I’m trying to sort out.

CRA: So call business windows, 1.800.959.5525.

Me: Really? Can’t I just speak to you.

CRA: I’ll only answer one general question, nothing account specific

Me: Well, it’s account specific… Thanks anyways…

Yes sir, with no shred of a lie. I’m okay with that, it’s not this person’s fault, it’s the system, right?


Staff member was at 15,000 steps at the end of the day and quite proud of it. I just cracked 10,000. Boldly, I pledged to surpass his total tonight. He laughed at me.


That meant I would actually have to do something once the kids went to bed and my wife off to her book club. So after getting some work done on, oh yes, cost basis reporting, I grabbed my stuff and headed out for a run. Now I’m writing this post at 19,000 steps. I’ll have to find a kind, gentle way to point it out to him. He he.


I also took the opportunity today to bring in ice cream sandwiches for the whole upstairs at my office today since it was so damn hot. One of my staff posted it somewhere, possibly Facebook, possibly just in an email to a friend, and it read; “This is why I love my boss”, and it had a picture of the ice cream. You know, I’d love my boss too if I got ice cream. Yeah (not that I don’t love my boss already, but there is room for ice cream after dinner and always room for more love for giving ice cream).


When the Atlanta Thrashers move from Atlanta to Winnipeg shouldn’t Commissioner Gary Bettman go too? How long until he tries to put another team there?!? 10 years?


Happy Birthday to my wife today! You look incredible and 10 years younger than me… Keep it up.
Why are sales people / wait staff so fucking rude all the time. Don’t they know that they lose customers that way? Don’t they care? Does anybody care?
When was the last time you paid a compliment instead of bitching? It’s so much easier to bitch someone out than it is to comment on how hard they work or how much you appreciate them.
Why are there so many songs about rainbows? And what’s on the other side?