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My favorite television show is Lost. My 2nd favorite is Boston Legal. One of my favorite characters on Boston Legal is Alan Shore portrayed by James Spader (starred in Stargate the movie).

So I have this new anger management plan. Whenever a situation arises with the children, or a phone call (call), or anything else, particularly if I feel myself starting to boil, I pause and ask myself, "What would Alan Shore do?" I did this for several weeks with much success before confiding my plan with my wife. Now she is aware and periodically calls out, "you’re doing it now!" with a grin. I tilt my chin up slightly, give a Mona Lisaesque smile, and reply, "of course I am."

This morning I forgot to ask, "What would Alan Shore do?" It really does make a difference! So, next time the tension hits, just ask, "What would Alan Shore do?"

See also and

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Literally, I’m going to do this

Years ago (2006 to be specific), as a fan of the show Boston Legal, I developed a form of anger management practice for myself by modeling my responses after James Spader’s character Alan Shore. Before speaking, I would ask myself, "What would Alan Shore do?" (WWASD)

I did this for several weeks with much success before confiding my plan with my wife. Now she is aware and periodically calls out, “you’re doing it now!” with a grin. I tilt my chin up slightly, give a Mona Lisaesque smile, and reply, “of course I am.”


WWASD do was fun and tempered me well. Today I’ve decided to take inspiration from another character. So, friend who reads my words, do not be surprised if I see you in public and say something like, "Hello driver who parks car poorly" or "Neighbor I only see when you need something" or "Well endowed, large breasted friend of mine." The time has come for me to channel and embody Dave Bautista’s character from Guadian’s of the Galaxy, Drax. So, what would Drax say? WWDS.

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My day in court

Tomorrow I get to spend the day in Civil Sessions Court. Just a little bit of my past coming back to haunt me. So today I thought I’d call down to find out the procedure. It went something like this:

Me: I am calling to find out what I need to bring to court tomorrow.
Them: I’m sorry sir that would be giving legal advise.
Me: Okay. How long will this take?
Them: I don’t know how many people are on the docket.
Me: How long does it normally take?
Them: Can’t say.
Me: Since I have never done this, can you explain the procedure to me?
Them: No that would be giving legal advice.
Me: You mean to tell me the process, the way your court works, is legal advice?
Them: I cannot give you legal advice. You need to consult a lawyer.
Me: I cannot afford a lawyer. Can you provide one for me?
Them: We don’t do that.
Me: Do you have a webpage that explains what I can expect in court tomorrow?
Them: I’m sorry sir. We cannot give legal advice.
Me: Feeling a little crotchety today aren’t we?
Them: *Click*

Yea! Tax dollars at work. Guess I should have gone to law school. I’ll just channel Alan Shore tomorrow and hopefully not learn what a holding cell feels like.

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Politely Rude – Parking Lot Road Rage

parking rage

So yesterday I pull into the parking lot of the Baptist church where my daughter gets her preschool classes. They have such an exceptional program! I nose into my parking space and the car to my left is backed in with a driver and passenger still in the large SUV. To my right is another van that is nosed in, perfectly parallel but maybe one tires width off center toward me. It is well within its space. Since the car beside me is occupied, I take an extra moment to make sure I have pulled into my space straight and well spaced. I am perfectly parallel to the white lines. I know this because when I got out I gave it a critical eye for a reason that is about to be explained. I am equally spaced between the two cars making my not perfectly centered in my parking space but well within the lines. I am probably a tire’s width off center and I could easily open my door and get out without the door crossing the virtual wall of the white line.

After I get out the occupied car’s engine cranks up, the car lunges forward, then backs up at an exagerated angle with the rear tire overlapping the white line and the backcorner now occupying the empty space beside him. I should have taken a picture with my camera phone.

Being a person not afraid of confrontation, I turn around and walk right up to his window and he rolls it down. I ask, "did I park too close to you?" He replies, "No, I was parked at angle." Me, "I am parked well in my spot with plenty of space between ours. Would you like me to move my car?" He politely replies, "No." I re-examine my parking job and am prideful of how straight I parked. I could have maybe been slightly more centered in the spot but not by much. Thank you Alan Shore for helping me not telling this guy what I really thought of him.

Fifteen minute later I return with my daughter and they are still sitting in the car and it is unmoved from the angled parking. These are the people that make me sad for they are the ones whose emotional problems are damaging our democracy and the American lifestyle.

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I need a Boston Legal fix!

I’ve forgotten my question. I don’t like this feeling.

This morning I turned a cheery Tommy at 8:01 into a teary, upset child at 8:27. I left the house with the 4 year old in shaky tears, the 10 year old hiding in his room, and the 13 year old withdrawn. Why? I made the greatest parental mistake of all; I lost my temper and yelled. I figure it will take months if not much longer to reverse the damage done in a brief moment of lack of self-control and regain my children’s trust. I felt it coming. Had I simply asked, "What would Alan Shore do?" this could have been prevented.

I am guessing that maybe I have 30 years left in me. I don’t want to do any more yelling for those 30 years. I’ve had enough.

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Store your bullets out of the reach of toddlers!

I went upstairs and couldn’t believe my eyes. Mixed in with the toys scattered across the living room floor was a, um, er, a marital aid. Obviously a 1 year old dragged it out of a storage space and became disenchanted with the toy dropping it in the middle of everything to move onto less embarassing toys like kitchen knives.

Coming close to a recreation of a scene from Parenthood, I openly point out what I am holding to my wife while my children’s backs are to me. They of course whip around with a "What?!" response but I’m too quick. Good thing too because we have a policy in this household of "if you bring it up, you explain it!"

Asking, "What would Alan Shore do?" I reacted calmly, slipping the tool into my pocket, making eye contact with the wife, and calling Sarah to babysit for 3 minutes.

Now honey, your neck massager needs to be put somewhere different. And feel free to read all kinds of double entendre into that.

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Boston Legal Sweeps Show Awesome!

My mantra, "What would Alan Shore do?" comes from my second favorite television show, Boston Legal. Minor spoiler ahead.

Last night’s episode was for May sweeps and was exceptional. I liked seeing the Alan and Denny in Los Angeles although I thought Alan’s case wasn’t all that challenging. The prosecution just didn’t make any decent agrument. For me, the highlight of the show was William Shatner breaking the fourth wall with Shirley for the kiss. That caught me totally off guard. I was equally as surprised when James Spader jumped in on the game to reference "next season" with Shatner’s followup question of "same night?" and Spader’s response, "God I hope so." Well played guys!

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From the mouths of babes

Dad: "How were your TCAPs?"
Sarah: "Boring!"
Dad: "I know they were boring. How did you do?"
Sarah: "I don’t know. They don’t tell us."
Dad: "How do you feel like you did? Good. Bad. Questions were hard. Made you think."
Sarah: "I don’t know"

Mom: "Noah, can Granny and Granddaddy come to your graduation?"
Noah, confused: "Did they come to graduation?"
Mom: "Can they come to graduation?"
Noah, still confused: "We haven’t had graduation yet."
Mom: "CAN!"
Noah: *blink* *blink*
Dad: "Noah. _Can_ Granny and Granddaddy come to graduation?"
Noah: "I don’t know if they can."
Dad, shouting: "Do you want them to come?!"
Dad, regrouping: WWASD WWASD