Blog Master G

Word. And photos, too.

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Happy Birthday, Jen!

Sunday, December 9th, 2012 · Comments Off on Happy Birthday, Jen!

Happy birthday to my awesome wife! What a great day: Santa photo fail, running around and playing at the mall with Grace and Mimi, Skyfall, Sperry’s, and Gracie’s candle ziti (“joke!”).

Happy birthday! We love you.


Comments Off on Happy Birthday, Jen!Tags: anecdotes

9 Years of Wedded Fun

Thursday, July 26th, 2012 · 5 Comments

Wow, time flies when you’re having fun every day. Happy 9-year anniversary to my amazing wife! I’m very lucky to have you – and now our Little Lady – in my life. I love you.





→ 5 CommentsTags: wedding

Happy 1st Birthday, Gracie!

Sunday, April 8th, 2012 · 2 Comments


One year ago today a special little lady, Grace Cory, was born. She arrived three weeks earlier than Jen and I expected, which caught us off guard, and she’s kept us on our toes ever since.


As I’m sure is the case for every new parent, the first few weeks and months were a haze, filled with sleepless nights, endless diapers, and new routines. There was this new little being in our house and in our lives, and it was joyous and overwhelming and exciting and scary all at once. Some days during a quiet moment, Jen and I would (and still occasionally do) ask each other, “Do we have a baby?”


It’s still surreal and amazing.


And that she is: Our amazing little Grace. Our lives have been forever changed for the better and she’s given us more in her first year than she’ll ever know. Her big blue eyes are filled with wonder, and her busy little hands teem with curiosity, always wanting to hold and explore and learn.


Her smile is heart-warming and her laugh contagious. As I sit here now, I can’t help smiling as I think about Baby Grace, who faces every day head-on with such passion and a wild sense of adventure. She’s funny, outgoing, and smart.

photo (1)

Lately, Grace has been experimenting with new faces, including her scrunch-face smile, which is part scowl and part mischievous grin.


She’s crawling up a storm, speeding from room to room in search of the next thing to learn about. She stands, occasionally on her own for a few moments before realizing what’s happening, and is taking some steps on her own with the aid of push-toys.


Grace loves the outdoors and staring up at the blue sky and green trees as the wind wisps through her most excellent and highly-praised hair. I love seeing the world through her eyes, following her line of sight to see what far-off leaf or squirrel or person she’s studying.


And speaking of people, Grace is fascinated by all people. Taking her out to restaurants or the farmers’ market or the grocery store, she’s usually more interested in her fellow humans than in the new surroundings. In restaurant high chairs, she’ll turn herself around to stare at people at the next table. At Hattie’s for dinner a few weeks back, Grace was the star of the evening, waving to  staff and customers alike, and dancing to Motown, her favorite music. Everyone loved her and her big character, and one server sarcastically commented, “Too bad she doesn’t have any personality.”


Lest I turn too much into the gushing new dad, I’ll leave it at that, and simply say, happy birthday, Gracie. Daddy loves you.

→ 2 CommentsTags: baby

10 Life Lessons I Learned from My Dog, Happy

Friday, March 16th, 2012 · 9 Comments


It’s been a sad week since Happy Dingo went to sleep for his final rest this week, but I’ve been trying to focus on the good things and the happy memories. While walking Stella this morning – still with Happy’s leash in hand, as I’ve been doing all week – I started thinking about how Happy Dingo lived his life with such vigor and enthusiasm that he was a model for how we humans could live our lives and be happier, each and every day.


So here’s a list of 10 Life Lessons I Learned from My Dog, Happy, which I think anyone can benefit from:

  1. Live life with enthusiasm. Jen and I often said Happy had two speeds: Stop and go. If he wasn’t relaxing, as he so loved to do, he was on the go, running from one place to the next with enthusiasm, from waking up in the morning to going for walks to supervising the morning preparation of vittles (he was the Vittle Supervisor).
  2. Give love. Happy had so much love to give, he was always by someone’s side. Whether he lived with you or had just met you for the first time, he was there to shower you with affection.
  3. Receive love. Happy was just as eager to have his head scratched or his belly rubbed as he was to dole out the licks.
  4. Be loyal. Happy took being a member of the pack very seriously. He was fiercely loyal to his people and to Stella. He hated being alone, and a more loyal dog was hard to find.
  5. Be yourself. This little dog had a big personality and he wasn’t afraid to show it. If his enthusiasm and affection were overbearing for one person, he’d just move on to the next person to share the love. He’d lie down with his legs crossed, or on his back with his legs spread. He wasn’t shy and he wasn’t afraid to let his personality shine.
  6. Be comfortable. Happy loved cozy places and he sought them out. From his dog bed to human beds to the couch to the smallest patch of sun, Happy saw no reason not to be comfortable every day.
  7. Make new friends. This one speaks for itself. Our Ambassador to Humans was the first to greet anyone through the door, and he was always looking for a new friend. He understood the important things in life.
  8. Take charge. Happy Dingo was not one to sit idle if he was in an uncomfortable situation. If his leash fell underneath his arm on a walk, he’d stand up on his hind legs and flap his front arms to get the leash back to the side where he liked it. Likewise with walks: He had to be on my right side. If he wasn’t, he’d put himself in the proper place and ensure Stella was to his left.
  9. Spend time with loved ones. Happy didn’t like to be alone, and wanted to spend as many of his waking moments with the people and dog he loved. In the end, what else really matters? We never know when our last day will come.
  10. Run fast. This dog loved to run. And he ran like the wind. From zoomies around the yard to cruising with me on runs in his final years, nothing could slow Happy down. Even on his final morning when he could barely breathe and walk, he managed to get himself outside to the yard. What better way to feel alive than to run as fast as you can, pushing your body to its limit, feeling the wind against your face? To run fast is to feel alive. And Happy’s spirit lives on.

We could all learn a thing or two from Happy Dingo.


 Photo by Niki Rossi

→ 9 CommentsTags: dogs

In Memory of Happy Dingo

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012 · 10 Comments

RIP, Happy Dingo McGee, circa September 1, 2001 – March 13, 2012

Adopted September 14, 2002


photo by Niki Rossi

Happy Dingo McGee was the most loving and loyal dog I’ve ever known. He lived every day with passion and enthusiasm. He always wanted to please his people, and his favorite things in life were Jen and me, his fur sister Stella, his vittles, and his zoomies — sprinting laps around the backyard from one fence to the other, bouncing off the fence as he propelled on to the next lap:


Working from home like I do, I was lucky enough to spend a lot of good years with Happy Dingo by my side, day and night.


I first met Happy — then named Split because of his escape-artist tendencies — in 2002 at the Marin Humane Society, which I visited on my lunch break from work one day. When I saw him in his cage, I knew he was the dog for us. And he was a popular little guy because we ended up being third on the waiting list. We got the call that our name had come up, so we took Stella to meet him, and it was love at first sight. Stella and Happy ran and frolicked around the pen at the Humane Society, and we knew he was coming home with us.



Happy wanted nothing more than affection, and we dubbed him the Ambassador to Humans. He was always the first to greet our friends and family, and would park himself next to whomever was willing to shower him with love. Sometimes he’d even sneak his way into an unsuspecting visitor’s lap on the couch, to snuggle up as close as possible.


With his border collie roots, Happy always wanted to herd Stella, chasing her around the house and the yard for years. As Stella’s aged and slowed down, she even tolerated his running around her in circles and nipping at her as she laid cooperatively on the living room floor.


A native Californian, Happy didn’t like to be cold, and at night on his dog bed in our room, he’d park himself right up against the radiator for extra warmth.


Happy loved to lick up empty yogurt containers, and in the past 11 months, became best buds with Grace, learning that the ideal place to park himself was directly beneath her high chair so that she could take a bite of food for herself, then throw the next one to him. She thought it was really funny, and one of her first words was "Happy."




There were few things in life Happy didn’t like — feet, possibly because he’d been abused as a young pup before we rescued him — and being wet. After a bath, he’d take drying himself off into his own hands (and paws):


In recent years I’d bring Happy running with me, and he always did his best to keep up, even when he’d eaten too many cookies the night before. Only a few months ago when he started to develop hip pain did I stop bringing him running with me. That little guy was born to run, so maybe my running passion was subconsciously influenced by Happy Dingo.


Just a few weeks ago he woke me up in the middle of the night when the smoke detector in the basement was beeping (dead batteries), so we dubbed him Fire Marshal Dingo. He was very proud of himself.


In 2003 when we drove cross-country from San Francisco to Saratoga Springs, Happy and Stella rode in the way back of the Subaru. By the end of the journey, Happy had gotten fed up with being way back there, so he climbed into the tiny space between the luggage and the roof of the car. He was one determined little guy, and was full of tenacity. If he wanted something, he was going to get it. He was quite the little escape artist.


His passing was very sudden and still hasn’t sunk in. Everything was fine up until this past Sunday, when he stopped eating, and just last night he started having a hard time breathing. After taking X-rays and doing blood work, the vet said this morning that he had a mass in his right lung (possibly Cancer), and there was a lot of fluid in his lung; the prognosis wasn’t good. Putting him to rest was the only humane thing to do, but I still don’t understand what happened and why it all happened so suddenly. He was such a little fighter, it makes me wonder if he’d been sick for a while, but just hid it from us because he didn’t want us to worry.

In pain or not, he always loved to sunbathe – even in the smallest patch of sun –and to cross his legs:



I love you, Little Buddy, and thank you for 10 great years. We’ll never forget you and the joy you brought us every day.

→ 10 CommentsTags: dogs

Happy 13th Birthday, Stella!

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012 · 6 Comments

Today is the (assigned) birthday of a good old dog, Stella Brie. She looks as good today as she did 13 years ago.

Jen and I adopted her in fall 1999 shortly after we moved into our first post-college residence on Treasure Island in San Francisco. We rescued her from Grateful Dogs Rescue. We got off to a rocky start — bad behavior, destroyed furniture, lots of barking at strangers — but we stuck with her, and we couldn’t have asked for a better dog (along with her companion who’d arrive a few years later, Happy Dingo).

You know you’ve had your old friend a long time when you (that is, I) look a lot younger in old photos than you (I) do today.

Happy 13th birthday, old girl! We’ve had lots of good times and look forward to many more.

→ 6 CommentsTags: dogs

On the Eighth Day of ’Stachemas

Monday, December 19th, 2011 · Comments Off on On the Eighth Day of ’Stachemas

The ’Stachemas Dove has apparently taken up the habit of time traveling lately, this time transporting us on a ’stache-tastic journey to the late 1830s, Kinderhook, NY, to show us some sweet Nineteenth Century chops from Jen’s home town.

The ’Stachemas Dove singeth out:

On the eighth day of ‘Stachemas

The ‘Stache Dove sent to me…

Eighth Presidential chops.

Seven sexy Sellecks.

Six sketchy Santas.

Five years of ABMGC.

Four bearded Jesuses.

Three ‘stachey stockings.

Two mutts a-muzzying.

And a sweet little ‘stache-fan-to-be.

Comments Off on On the Eighth Day of ’StachemasTags: abmgc 2011

On the Seventh Day of ’Stachemas

Monday, December 19th, 2011 · 2 Comments

Today the ’Stachemas Dove brings us back to the Mecca of Mustaches: The 1980s. His song features the granddaddy of ’80s ‘staches himself, Mr. Tom Selleck.

The ’Stachemas Dove sings out:

On the seventh day of ‘Stachemas

The ‘Stache Dove sent to me…

Seven sexy Sellecks.

Six sketchy Santas.

Five years of ABMGC.

Four bearded Jesuses.

Three ‘stachey stockings.

Two mutts a-muzzying.

And a sweet little ‘stache-fan-to-be.

→ 2 CommentsTags: abmgc 2011

On the Sixth Day of ’Stachemas

Sunday, December 18th, 2011 · 2 Comments

We’re in the home stretch, mustache fans, with less than a week to the final Christmas Eve ‘stache-off. Today the ’Stachemas Dove brings us a special dose of holiday cheer, singing out with follicular joy like only the ’Stachemas Dove can:

On the sixth day of ‘Stachemas

The ‘Stache Dove sent to me…

Six sketchy Santas.

Five years of ABMGC.

Four bearded Jesuses.

Three ‘stachey stockings.

Two mutts a-muzzying.

And a sweet little ‘stache-fan-to-be.

Photos courtesy of sketchy santas.

In other mustache news, we’ve seen a number of entries from the non-Anderson contingent, including the following:



Charles (a soul patch, but he had spirit):

We also had some smack talk from James, but we never saw any photographic proof of his ‘stache. Of course, he also claims to be sporting the invisistache, too, so take that for what it’s worth.

→ 2 CommentsTags: abmgc 2011

On the Fifth Day of ’Stachemas

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011 · 2 Comments

The sappy bastard that he is, the ’Stachemas Dove was feeling nostalgic today. He arrived in my kitchen, scooped me under his wing, and took me for a wild ride down memory lane, all Ghost of Christmas Past style. As we flew through the ether, the ’Stachemas Dove sang out in melodic cheer:

On the fifth day of ‘Stachemas

The ‘Stache Dove sent to me…

Five years of ABMGC.

Four bearded Jesuses.

Three ‘stachey stockings.

Two mutts a-muzzying.

And a sweet little ‘stache-fan-to-be.










Oh, and for the record, Pete’s masquerading lately as some mustachioed Christmas lumberjack, who clearly stands no chance against the power instilled in me by the ’Stachemas Dove:

→ 2 CommentsTags: abmgc 2011