4 weeks 'til we head to the studio

In four weeks, we'll be back at the deliciously named Kung Fu Bakery recording studio to lay down the tracks for OyBaby 2. History will remember this studio for giving birth of the OyBaby sound, much like Sun Records is indellibly linked to Elvis Presley. Lesser known acts Pink Martini and Everclear have also recorded there.

The song list has been finalized. Here it is with a few additions and deletions from the previous list I posted:
  • Modeh Ani
  • Shehecheyanu
  • Hanukkah Blessings
  • L'Cha Dodi
  • Mah Nishtanah
  • Mi Chamocha
  • Kobi's Lullaby
  • Af Peh Ozen
  • Shalom Rav
  • Ten Li
  • Tumbailalaika
  • Hiney
  • Tzena Tzena
  • Hallelujah

Sorry, mom. Ba Shanah is out.


Out of The Box Thinking

I love seeing products that take an established, boring commodity and do something new and exciting with them. Check out this high chair:


Where Are They Now? Taleah

Taleah - Then and Now

Taleah and her ringlets of blonde curls are looking forward returning in OyBaby 2. Now almost 4 years old, Taleah loves the Princesses, and spent some quality time exchanging acting secrets on a recent trip to DisneyLand. She's active in dance, acting, and tennis classes, but the thing she loves most is spending time with her best friend and little sister.

Cliffs Notes on Judaism

As I'm planning the sequel, there's one book to which I keep referring...Joseph Telushkin's Jewish Literacy. If you're looking to learn more about Judaism, or just want a handy place to go to look up questions from time to time, this book is it. The other day, I decided to learn more about King David (the original, not the 2-year old monarch of our household), and Telushkin had a great 5 page summary.

Another great resource is the Aish Hatorah website. The have an enormous database of articles explaining both the what and why of many topics in Judaism.

Check 'em out. You just might learn something.

Just Flew In From Cleveland (and boy, are my arms tired!)

It's 12:12 AM, and David slept the whole way back. Now he's all hopped up on vanilla soy milk and playing with one of his many toy airplanes while daddy blogs.

Later today, we're sending out the press release announcing sales of 5,000 copies of OyBaby and our plans for the sequel. We'll also mention this blog as a way of keeping you posted on the progress of the sequel.

For those of you reading this blog for the first time, welcome! If you start from the bottom and work your way up, you'll be reading these posts in the order they were written. We haven't had that much to report yet on the sequel yet, but things will start getting busy real soon.

Thanks for reading, and let us know your ideas!

Hello Cleveland!

Heading off to Cleveland tomorrow with the kids. I'm coming up on 10 years in Seattle, but Cleveland will always be my "home town."

Cleveland's got a great Jewish community--big (about 70,000) and totally concentrated into about 5 suburbs. It's a total shtetl--like Anatevka, but instead of Cossacks, it has a Costco.

Every Jew I've ever met in this country seems to have a cousin in Shaker Heights.

People that have been to Cleveland know that I am looking forward to eating at Corky and Lenny's. I'm sure that when I walk in there, I'll run into someone from my high school, Jewish summer camp, or BBYO (possibly embodied in the same person).

For all the burning river jokes (thanks, Randy Newman) and images of rusty smokestacks, anyone who grew up there loves to talk about what a great town it is.

Why Do a Blog, Part 2

Outside of the tech world, blogs are still a pretty new "new thing." BusinessWeek just did a cover story on blogs and how they'll change the face of business. But as one blogger put it, "BusinessWeek is famous for jumping on the bandwagon just before it goes over the cliff." I too think the blogging phenomenon is overhyped in some circles. However, it's underhyped in others.

Most people in my informal sample of non-work friends had never heard of a blog. Makes me think back to the time when I'd ask someone for their email address and get a blank stare.

Did you know, for example, that there are 493 blogs listed in the Jewish Blog Ring ? There are blogs from all points along the Judaic spectrum. Some are worthless. Others connect us with prolific writers that share our passions, hope, and faith. I encourage you to check 'em out, starting with some of the ones I have listed to the right (Jewschool can be a bit risque). A nice thing about blog etiquette is that it's common practice for a blogger to link to other blogs and sites that he or she likes. Start with one and follow that bread crumb trail.

From a business perspective, blogs represent a refreshing new type of transparency. Whether it's my humble little baby video company or the slightly larger company I work for by day, blogs allow businesses to speak in a more human voice. More importantly, blogs invite customers to talk back--to make it a two way conversation that brings the business closer to its customers.

Some of the great brands on the web--Google, Yahoo, Amazon, Microsoft, and others--let there employees blog publicly about the goings on at their company. Sure, there are limits, like don't post any trade secrets, but generally, the employees are given a pretty wide latitude. It displays both trust in the employee and respect for the customer to communicate so openly.

Does your company let you blog about it? Discuss.

"I'm chompin' at the bit for OyBaby 2!"