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Chris Hayes! Am I the only person who wants to give him a giant bear hug and have him regale me with stories of the Bulls? I don't even watch basketball, but if anyone can make me care I bet it'd be him. Seriously, though, I applaud any man who's willing to sacrifice time at his job to spend time with his wife and their newborn child. My husband used up his vacation time when both of our kids were born, and having him available and present during those weeks of immense adjustment made us a stronger family unit.

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I thought Chris made a great point in his defense of CNN when he noted that these 24 hour news cycle networks aren't meant to be watched all day. They're mainly designed to tell us what's going on and where it's going on so we can feel informed and then change the channel to watch Saved By the Bell reruns. Framed that way, I feel like big news stories are almost a disservice to these networks. They feel like they have to be giving us more and more information — albeit useless at times — because they don't know if the viewer has been watching for five hours, or just tuned in while making their box of mac and cheese for dinner. That was an incredibly long sentence. Moving on.

Finally, Luke straddling the fence on the work-life balance discussion seemed a bit contradictory to me. (I swear I love Luke. He knows I love him. I'll stop disagreeing with him when our ratings start dropping.) After all, he moved to PT to get away from the hustle and bustle of Seattle life. He's admitted that, though he's taken a drastic pay cut, he's never been happier. That's a pretty dramatic change to his quality of life. Maybe there's some French blood swimming through his Albanian veins.

-toni hammer // whitestten@gmail.com // @realtonihammer

TBTL Song of the Day: Some French Song
Tens Song of the Day: Anonymous Club by Courtney Barnett (suggested by @fettwalp via Twitter)

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It's so convenient that Fred Armisen just happened to stop by the Aladdin Theater when they were taping Live Wire. Talk about a stroke of good luck!

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The interviews on Wednesday's show with Fred and Carl Kasell were absolutely delightful. When Fred was saying he began to realize music wasn't his gig when he just wanted out of the studio, I could totally relate. That's how I feel about motherhood. I just want out. Like yesterday.

I kept thinking during Carl's interview about how much history was embedded in his tall body. So many years of being involved in the news. So many stories. All the people he's met. It made me wish I had more respect for the elder folks I come in contact with. Maybe I should stop getting annoyed that they're in my way at the grocery store, and instead ask them to tell me what life was like before the war while I sit on their knee. That wouldn't be weird, would it?

Today's song of the day was suggested by "Susan Melvin Thaler" over on the sTens Facebook page. I'm unsure if it was Susan or Melvin. Maybe it was a joint effort. Either way, if you have a suggestion for a Song of the Day, email me, tweet at me, post it on the sTens page, send me a smoke signal, etc.

-toni hammer // whitestten@gmail.com // @realtonihammer

Song of the Day: Helmet by The Bobs

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Did anyone else hope that Andrew would actually take Luke's Mickey Rooney advice and just go home in hopes that elves would do his work and an angel would get its wings?

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I loved Luke's Mickey Rooney impression, but I think the sentiment is no bueno. Things don't just magically work themselves out following an inspirational speech. If you're stressed about getting something done at work... you're still going to have to complete said thing at work whether Tony Robbins tells you it'll all work out or not. Stuff's gotta get done. Luke knows this and is kinda sorta the same as Andrew in terms of the hustle and bustle and stress. The difference is his stress manifests itself as a toothache in his hair roots.

To Luke's credit, though, I think he was just trying to give Andrew an audible chill pill because, as we all know, Andrew is wound a bit too tight. So kudos to Luke for trying, but kudos rescinded because I disagree with the position.

-toni hammer // whitestten@gmail.com // @realtonihammer

TBTL Song of the Day: Swimming Pool Blues by Miniature Tigers
My Song of the Day: When We First Met by Hellogoodbye

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Andrew is now into GTA. Luke can't operate those new fandangled complicated controllers. Game of Thrones blah blah blah.

You're caught up!

I've been waiting for some sort of One and a Half Men segment to chime in on since it turns out I'm a woman. I think it's super lame that Diane Feinstein was called out for supposedly being too emotional. I'm with Luke that this issue is something worth being emotional about whether man or woman. The part that got me was when they made the point that if John McCain were to break down, he'd be revered as this deep feeling hero, but if a woman does it, well, maybe it's just that time of the month.

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I imagine studies have been done pointing out that, in general, women are more emotional than men. Or they reveal their emotions more often than men. I don't think anyone would be surprised by a statistic like that. But what's a bummer is when people take that generalization and use it to undermine someone's position. Emotions most often equal passion. My husband loves it when I get super angry because it means I'm passionate about something. If Feinstein got a little emotional about the topic, it means she's passionate about it. That should bolster her opinion—not take away from it.

Hope everyone had a great weekend! I'm going to go watch Sesame Street and cry.

-Toni Hammer // whitestten@gmail.com // @realtonihammer

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The guys somehow knew that my Friday posts were of a more self-examining nature even though they don't read the blog. It was a weird meta psychic moment I'm sure.

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I think the gents brought up some good stuff about happiness and what makes us happy. I gotta say this, and Andrew knows I love him, but his lack of some sort of creative endeavor makes me sad.

I think we all need a "thing." We all need something that is ours. It has no connection to our partners, spouses, children, or boss. (In my case, my children are my boss. I keep trying Luke's idea of "my child, my enemy," but by dinnertime I'm spent and just let them have the house while I sit on the kitchen floor hoping they forget my existence.) We all need some sort of creative outlet that's ours. Something to look forward to that reminds us that we are more than a spouse, more than a parent, more than a drone in a cubicle. Yes, work and family is super rewarding, but I firmly believe that if we're taking time for ourselves, we're going to be better people in all aspects of our lives.

For my husband, it's magic. Yes, my husband's side job is being a magician. A magician married to an albino. No, I don't know why we don't have a reality show yet. My "thing" is writing which is why I do all this work for little or no money. It's my thing. It's what I look forward to doing after the kids are in bed and I have some downtime. It's what helps me feel like a complete individual in my chaotic life.

What's your thing? Do you have a thing? Do you think it's important to have a thing or do you disagree? Let me know and have a great weekend!

-Toni Hammer // whitestten@gmail.com // @realtonihammer

TBTL Song of the Day: Get Happy by Judy Garland
My Song of the Day: The Happy Song (Dum Dum) by Otis Redding

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