Look closely at the picture above. To the casual observer, this may look like Nerf darts scattered across a suburban cul-de-sac. To me, they spell the word validation. Validation for a moment's notice decision to move the entire family from Los Angeles to a small town no one's ever heard of in Northern CA. Validation for my using the word hella in a post title in an attempt to adopt the vernacular of my new home (ok, maybe some things can never be validated).
When we first packed up and left, I had fears. My own migration into suburbia also happened in 4th grade. It didn't go so well. While times and racial tolerance are different now, I couldn't help but worry that I was removing Fury from everything that he ever knew and plunking him down in unfamiliar territory to fend for himself. Well, he fended for himself, alright. With Nerf guns blazing, sqeals of laughter and a gang of neighborhood homies of all colors, creeds and Axe spray varietals. They show up at all hours of the day, ravage our snacks like locusts, and make this new house a home for Fury.
And because this town was built with parks and bikepaths connecting every neighborhood, I can actually let him bike outside of our own driveway for once. In fact, I give him a cell phone and he rides for miles. I know this because he calls me and says "Dad, I am in front of [any given address]. Check Google Maps. How far have I gone?"
The only thing missing is jobs, which d Wife and I both moved here without. However, things are looking up on that front for both of us. I don't like to jinx things that help me pay my mortgage, so that's all I will say about that for now. However, not having to go to work each day means I can do things like help my buddy Toheed (who moved here from LA a year before I did, and wouldn't shut up about how awesome it was until I did too) do random things like dismantle a car wash. Lessons learned there: a rented forklift is worth every penny, and tweakers you hire off the street are excellent at unbolting lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of bolts.
The dismantled carwash is pictured above. Also, the house next to ours is empty and available in case you're looking to move to the best little town no one, not even NorCal people, have ever heard of. And no, we're not turning it into a carwash, though if that crossed your mind, you know me well.
Oh yeah, file this one under "Makes your relocation a whole hell of a lot easier to swallow": LG Electronics found me at the Dad 2.0 Summit and said (and I paraphrase): "Jim, we'd like to pimp your family room for our Techorating Challenge."
I said yes, and showed them a picture of my family room:
"Have at it," I said.
Then this happened...
And then they gave me a script, some makeup and turned my house into a film studio for 18 hours.
They also did the same thing to High Tech Dad and then pitted us against one another in a grueling fight to the finish. At least we both get to plunk down at the end of this Techorating Challenge and rehydrate in front of our 55" LG LCD 3D TVs (QRS... TUV... WXY and Z). The electronics and home decorating cockfight, hosted by ESPN's Stuart Scott, is depicted below, if you dare:
I'm showing you all this because it too can be yours. Just go to the LG Techorating Challenge Facebook page and enter to win your own Techorated room. You only have one day left to do this (procrastination would be my middle name if it weren't Ching-kuo). They close it off on Wednesday, May 2 at 11:59:59 pm EST. You have to vote for one of us, but really, it doesn't matter who you vote for. The TV and room make-over were enough for me. I don't even know what I win, if I win and it doesn't really matter.
And remember kids, a good disclosure statement gives you healthy teeth and gums and keeps your blog out of the government no-no house, so here goes:
*YO YO YO! LG or its affiliates have not kicked me over a dime for any articles or posts. They did, however hook me up with a gang of stuff, like a 55" 3D LCD TV, some classy "MTV Cribs" caliber furniture (I'm still waiting on that stripper pole, though), an LG Bluetooth Soundbar, and they even threw in a microwave just for the hell of it. All this was provided as part of the Techorator program experience. However, all articles, tweets, and other materials that I post related to LG products and the Techorator program are entirely my own opinion. In fact, everything I post is always my own opinion, which would mean that if this were North Korea, I would be making license plates with my healthy teeth.
*Mic drop. Peace in the middle east.