There is something decidedly strange in getting excited about receiving the social security card. But when it comes to a newborn, and the card signifies the very first official document that the little person has, it definitely passes for another milestone.



We have been back in the States from England for exactly a year, and Natasha made a fairly sad observation the other day: For the first time in over a decade, she spent an entire length of a year without venturing abroad. Not even to Dominican Republic or Canada… Not having been pregnant for most[…]

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Veni, vidi, vici

Heh! The whole thing took me less than half a day to turn around, and a couple of hours were idly spent on waiting for DNS changes to propagate. I have one strange artifact in the Travelog, which I will have to look into at some later time. I also do not yet see the[…]

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You will probably not even notice it

… but there will likely be an intermittent downtime at burlaki.com in the next couple of weeks. The reason for that is that I am moving the domain to a cheaper hosting platform. When I started the website about four years ago, I was not expecting that the main blog would become practically the only[…]



Admit it, all of my one-post-a-week schedule aside, you keep coming back to this blog because you expect pearls of wisdom from me that you cannot get anywhere else. I’ll give you one: This whole thing called parenthood is awfully hard. There she is, just a few days old, lying on a blanket and moving[…]


Introducing Emily

My meat-space friends have been aware of the fact that Natasha and I embarked on a serious new project roughly nine months ago. Now it’s time to announce the results. Emily Sofia Burlak was born in the early morning hours of this fine Wednesday. She weighed in at 7 lbs 1 ounce and measured 20[…]


Mid-year movie roundup

With my continuing meager creative output, I figured I could for once fall back on an almost-forgotten recurring feature. After all, we did decide a couple of months ago to trade in cable movie channels – which, in the States, seem to never have the movies I want to watch on the channels that I happen to have – for a Netflix subscription (especially, seeing how Netflix now streams to Wii – although the selection of movies available for streaming leaves a lot… let me repeat that – a lot!… to be desired).

It would appear that I should have watched more than 17 movies since the beginning of the year, but that’s the whole tally. Usual drive-by impressions are below the fold.

Airport 1970
Alice in Wonderland 2010
Amélie 2001
Body of Lies 2008
Book of Eli 2010
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull 2008
Inglorious Basterds 2009
Iron Man 2008
Nowhere Boy 2009
Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief 2010
Public Enemies 2009
State of Play 2009
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button 2008
The Dark Knight 2008
The Hurt Locker 2009
The Lovely Bones 2010
The Men Who Stare at Goats 2009



Photobooks again: Picaboo vs Adoramapix

After my latest photobook review, in which I proclaimed Adoramapix my new favorite among the several services, the folks at Picaboo, which was my “winner” of an earlier review, got into action. I was contacted by a nice lady from Picaboo, who informed me of some of the new features of the Picaboo X product, including availability of lay-flat book style, which I so happily used at Adoramapix. After a brief email exchange, I elicited an offer of a free tryout book. Obviously, I then had to try and see how the two services compared.