The following are not (and never will be) paid posts. Just a roundup of cool news, products and totally random tidbits. And sometimes you can even win stuff.
It’s Where Bindi Eats...
Outback Steakhouse has always been a favorite of mine. No, let me rephrase that completely. Since having a kid, Outback has been a favorite of mine. When I was a foodie single dude, I stayed away from casual dining “family” joints. But once booth space (i.e. room to fidget, play with Bionicles and make noise without inviting the wrath of fellow diners) trumped “prowess in searing” as salient restaurant criteria, Outback shot up the ranks. Their spacious booths are a parent’s dream. I’d go there for the booths alone. Not kidding.
A couple weeks ago, we asked Fury where he wanted to go for his birthday dinner. He said Outback. When I asked him why, I would have totally been ok with “because Outback’s PR firm pitched you about their 20th anniversary and sent you a nice gift card for your troubles and you now have to post about it, and I’m such a good son that I’m giving you a legit reason to write about it.” But he didn’t say that. Instead, he said “because it’s where Bindi eats.” I’m not sure that’s true, but given his total obsession with the Jungle Girl from down under, I did not want to burst his bubble.
So, off to Bindi’s favorite haunt we went. And yes, it really does happen to be Outback’s 20th anniversary, by the way. And with 800 restaurants across the country and 950 locations worldwide, Bindi can rest assured that anywhere she goes, she can enjoy a taste of home any time – even at home (they have locations in Australia, I just checked). And I really do enjoy eating there. Mostly because it is home to one of my favorite W8 Loss Wednesday killers, the Bloomin’ Onion. The press release says it can easily be shared among 4 to 6 of your mates. Sure, if they happen to be 6 year-olds who don’t dig onions. Otherwise, one Bloomin’ Onion is good for me and maybe one other person, like my wife, or someone I would not growl at if they reached for my food.
While I dig the Bloomin' Onion, d Wife and Fury cannot get enough of their Pumpernickel bread, as evidenced here. Yes, he pretty much ate that entire loaf himself. Which meant he had no room for his dinner (they have an extensive kids menu, which scores points in my book). But he did have several bites of my Chargrilled Tuscan Ribeye. He heard me talking about how I like my steak bloody, and his “Man-stinct” prompted him to ask me for some. So badass, yet so cute.
All in all, a great birthday meal in every way (yes, they serve Newcastle, but not on tap). Go there for your next family celebration and tell them BusyDad sent you (that is if you like it when people give you a blank stare and say “huh? Busy wha?”).
Happy 20th, Outback!
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I Know My Kid's Birthday ... and that's about it.
And I suspect it's only because his birthday happens to be on tax day. I definitely do not remember any other kids' birthdays, and I sure as hell DON'T have the slightest clue about what to buy for, say, a 9 year-old girl, or an 11 year-old boy. Do you have a lot of kids to buy presents for? Then check out a cool website called Kobold Toys.
Besides carrying toys that are more unique in nature (they shoot for eco-friendliness, craftsmanship and educational value), Kobold Toys also has a cool service called Very Busy Very Thoughtful (hmm, sounds like me, doesn't it?). The first part is free. You enter the name of the person you would like to be reminded for, along with the occasion, occasion date and date on which you would like to be reminded. Easy as that. On the specified date, you get an email reminder. No brain cells needed.
But if you're like me, the stress of kids' presents isn't always remembering dates (after all, I do have a wife who LIVES by her smartphone), it's the "what the heck do I buy this kid?" factor. Well, for $10, you can relax. They will interview you about the kid in question and find something appropriate. You may think this benefits you (by making you look good), or maybe even the kid (they get a gift they are more likely to love), but no. You know who benefits most? The kid's parents. If you care about them at all, you will do this. How many Saturday afternoons have you wasted doing the gift reciept shuffle between Target and Toys R Us? Don't do unto others...
Note to Kobold Toys: you guys want to make a lot of money? Launch a covert service that helps husbands with gifts for their wives. Talk about a fear-driven business concept. You would make bank!
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A Pat on the Back is Nice... So is a Canon DVD Camcorder
Got a picture or video that just says "fatherhood" all over it? Pimp it and win a Camcorder or Digital Camera. You have until May 14 to go over to the National Fatherhood Initiative's website and submit a picture or video that you feel exemplifies fatherhood. While you're there, check out what they're all about. The organization's mission is "to improve the well being of children by increasing the proportion of children growing up with involved, responsible, and committed fathers." Very cool. Very necessary.