Tuesday, November 28, 2006

How to Prevent Identity Theft

When I first told Wayne I wanted to start this blog, he was concerned about security, about having random strangers hit our site, looking at photos of our children, etc. While I can understand this, and have taken steps to minimize as much as possible the number of "strangers" who can visit the site, today at lunch I witnessed a much more risky behavior when it comes to personal security.

I went to our building cafeteria to grab some lunch and saw a woman standing at the end of the food line, talking loudly on her cell phone. She was obviously making arrangements with a hotel for some kind of event, by her discussion I can only assume a wedding reception or anniversary celebration.

She proceeded to stand there and loudly give our her credit card number, including the expiration date and full and complete name as it's printed on the card, in the middle of this cafeteria. I can still remember the first 8 digits of it, not by my active listening, but simply by walking around her and collecting my things as she had her discussion. (Her card also expires in April 2008, in case you're wondering.)

Anyone, and I mean anyone, could have quickly jotted down that number as s/he pretended to gather some salad makings, and there you have it, a new plasma TV, compliments of the dumb woman in the cafeteria. Not to mention the fact that the technology exists to "pick up" cell phone conversations via wi fi gadgets, more people than just those within the cafeteria could have picked up this information.

If someone had decided to take her up on her blatant offer to steal her credit card information, she would probably have the gall to accuse some direct marketer of making it avaiable to criminals, not realizing that she was her own worst enemy.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

How many ounces was that steak?!

Lindsey LOVES steak. Seriously loves it. When she was barely over a year old, she would nibble on tidbits of our steaks (prepared medium rare, mind you), and would signal for more.

For the last 6 months or more every time we have steak, whichever parent is responsible for "sharing" with Lindsey always ended up going hungry. We would both end up feeding her bits of our steaks so that we could have some to eat ourselves. It was hard to judge how much Lindsey was actually eating and since it was a "shared" situation, we always figured that we weren't sharing as much as we thought we were.

Finally, this evening Wayne bought three 8 oz steaks for the three of us. He bought them at Lund's, mind you, so they cost around $40 for the three of them.

So after the appropriate amount of time on the grill, he served three steaks of 8 oz each: two medium rare ones for Wayne and I, and a medium steak for Lindsey.

She ate all of it.

Every last bit.

There was no fat left.

I had no idea a little 3 1/2 year old's tummy could actually contain 8 oz of steak, but apparently it can. And...she wanted more, so she ate two more pieces of my steak before we finally cut her off.

She had a piece of bread to boot. We couldn't believe it, I wish I had a photo, a "before" and "after" photo of her full and then empty plate. She even ate it as quickly as Wayne!

After registering our shock, Wayne turned to her and said, "You know Lindsey, not many 3 1/2 year olds get to eat a $13 steak." She just grinned.

Friday, November 10, 2006


Going to a restaurant with little children in tow is always an interesting experience.

Today Wayne had off work as Saturday is Veterans Day. Apparently that's a big holiday in the banking world so they were closed. He planned to spend the day with Lindsey to get in some one-on-one time, so plans were made for a breakfast out, followed by a visit to the Minnesota Children's Museum.

I decided to join them for breakfast out as I had a chiropractor's appt at 8:30 in the morning, so I went with them for breakfast, went to my appt, then went to work.

Since I had an appointment to go to, speedy service was of the utmost importance, and in our haste to save money we decided upon the Edina Grill for breakfast, since we had a coupon for them. They are not known for having the speediest service, however, and we waited and waited to have coffee brought to the table, to order our food, to get creamer, etc.

It is a rare thing when you can actually drain a coffee cup when you dine out for breakfast. Even if it isn't your server who passes you by with a coffee carafe in tow, someone is bound to refill your coffee when it hits the halfway mark.

Not so much today.

Today both Wayne and I sat with empty coffee mugs for quite some time and couldn't catch anyone's attention for a refill, much less to ask about our missing food for the hungry 3-year-old who kept asking where her pancakes were.

Lindsey looked over and saw that our coffee mugs were empty, promptly stood up, looked in the general direction of the server station and yelled at the top of her little lungs, "MORE COFFEE!"

Once the laughter died down, our coffee mugs were promptly refilled, our food immediately came out, and our check was delivered with haste to the table.

I'm not sure that they were really stepping up the service as much as desiring that the pre-schooler leave the restaurant as quickly as possible.