Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!!

Ok, so I didn't realize it had been over a month since I had blogged. I will strive to do better. In the meantime, Merry Christmas to all. Peace on Earth, and all that good stuff!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Where Were You?

This may sound a bit melodramatic, but I really do think this latest discovery about stem cells could easily be historic to the degree of the moon landing. It could change how modern medicine is practiced. Granted, there is still a good bit of research left in order to perfect the method, but the researchers interviewed seemed to think it would only be a matter of a few months before they were able to create the cells in a more reliable way, without retroviruses. If that is true, the entire debate over the use of discarded embryos to retrieve stem cells would be over. Done. Finis. The potential use of stem cells is unlimited. Imagine a world without heart disease, liver disease, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, tranplant lists, organ donors, kidney dialysis. The list goes on. And on. And on. Right now, it's still just potential, and I realize that stem cells won't simply be a cure-all, but man... Wouldn't it be something if they even fulfilled half the uses that we imagine they could?

Monday, November 19, 2007

Happy Birthday Katy!

Well, today is my friend Katy's birthday (she's the one over in England). My friendship with Katy is probably my second longest (after Rob, who was my Best Man). We met in the 9th grade (25 years ago!) at Eleanor Roosevelt High School. Probably in Jose Irrizary's 1st period class ("You know how long three inches is, don't you Chong?"). Aye yi yi... Long time ago. Anyways, Happy Birthday, Katy!

Friday, November 16, 2007


Well, Chrissy and I found an actual animation of the bear that was referred to in the bizarre music accompanying an adorable video of a horse and a cat. If you re-read the lyrics before watching the video, it actually follows.

Chrissy and I have not only become addicted to this strange music, but we are obsessed with all things Bamse. It's weird, I know.

The Redskins have once again played great for three quarters then blown a lead. We should be 8-1 now, but instead we are 5-4. After this weekend, we'll most likely be at 5-5. I am still rooting for my boys, but will be surprised if we beat the Cowboys this weekend. We've just got too many injuries and are playing too erratically. Not to mention, not being able to play a 4th quarter to save our lives! Ah well. They're still my boys. Hail to the Redskins!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Contender

Congratulations to Sakio Bika, winner of the third season of The Contender. In what turned out to be the best fight I've seen this year (Sugar Ray agreed), Bika TKO'd Jaidon "The Don" Codrington in the eighth round of a scheduled ten. Each of the fighters knocked the other down in the first round. But they each got back up and made it through the rest of the round. The rest of the fight see-sawed back and forth, each fighter landing punches hard enough to knock out 90% of the other boxers in the sport. By the eighth round, Bika finally delivered enough cumulative punishment for the referee to stop the fight. It was an amazing fight... it was what boxing is all about.

They're Baaaaaack!

I guess Clinton Portis is feeling a little better about himself after last week's 196-yard game. After a long conspicuous absence, he appeared to the press this week in character. He's so crazy. It's nice to see that swagger back. Now, if we can just back it up with a few wins. We should be able to beat Philly this week. Cowboys will be tough next week and the last week. And the Giants will be tough in mid-December. Other than that, we should be good. I'm predicting a 5-3 record through the 2nd half of the season, finishing 10-6.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Lyrics to Bamse Song

Ok, according to Emma, a fan of Cute Overload (the site where I got the video), the following is a rough translation of the song about Bamse:

Bamse (the bear) and Lille Skutt(the rabbit) were jumping out to the forest.
Along came Skalman, tampeli svamp, tripped over a cat.
Bamse said, "Come here, come here kitty kitty kittycat.
I will give you a meatball as soon as we arrive."

Soon they saw Grandma's house far up on the mountain.
Lille Skutt ran all he could, all the way there.
And then Bamse said: "You are running waaay to fast, wait for the rest of us.
We dont have any long legs, and Skalman (the turtle) is tired...tired."

Come in come in to my little cottage and I will give you something to eat,
meatballs and lingonberries and lots of icecream.
Don't you want any hunny, big strong Bamse?
No thanks, no thanks not right now, because I am full.

And then the Husmus (the mouse) said: "The hunny is stolen!"
Bamse starts to run fast, so fast, catching Jansson's cat.
Bad bad little kitty, you can get stomach ache. Don't do tricks on us.
Run to Grandma's house. And so the story eeennnndss...

Thanks, Emma!

This Is a First...

Ok, this is going to sound a bit strange, but this post comes with instructions. To really get the full effect of this video, I would recommend watching it the first time without sound. It is absolutely adorable! So. Let's say you've done that, but you're looking for something more. Watch it a second time with sound. It is so friggin' bizarre, and completely and totally random, but it's really hilarious. After that, then come back and read the explanation after the video.

Apparently, this is a video posted on YouTube by someone in Sweden. The accompanying music references a cartoon about Bamse, the strongest bear in the world (and the kindest!). How does he get so strong, you ask? Why, by eating a special honey made by his grandmother! This honey, called dunderhonug (or "Thunder Honey"), gives him super strength. Naturally, as we can't have superpowered bears running around everywhere, the honey only works on Bamse. If anyone else eats it, they get a tummy ache for three days. The song is apparently a homemade song about Bamse encountering a cat that wants his Thunder Honey, and he tries to tell said cat that if he eats it, he will get a tummy ache.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. You can't make this shit up!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

My New Favorite Blog

I recently discovered The "Blog" of "Unnecessary" Quotation Marks on the USA Today Pop Candy Blog. I practically laugh out loud every time I read it. Cracks me up!

On a sad note, I learned today of the passing of Chef Tell. I had almost forgotten about him until I read of his untimely death. He was the first television chef I remember seeing. If not for him, we might not have Rachael Ray, Alton Brown, Paula Deen, Giada De Laurentiis, Martin Yan. I could go on. I was also saddened by the death of Robert Goulet. Definitely a class act.

Unlike certain other individuals who shall go unnamed. Individuals who go for it on fourth down in the fourth quarter when they're already up 38 points. Individuals who throw 35 yard passes in the fourth quarter when it's obvious to all involved that the other team is no threat whatsoever, and every other team in the NFL would have been rushing every play in order to run the clock down (especially when it was equally apparent that they could rush virtually at will). I know there will be others who will disagree. I know there will be others who will say it's sour grapes and I'm just upset my team was embarassed. I am upset. It was embarassing. Doesn't change my opinion of certain people's actions. Many players and coaches are showing a lot of class saying that they have no problem with what was done and that it was simply a competetive team playing hard ball. Do I believe for one second that those people feel that way and believe in their hearts what they are saying? Not for one second.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Pats O-Line

Ok, I'm watching Skins pre-game. I'm seeing something that I've noticed over the past week of watching coverage of the Pats leading up to today's game. Aside from the media being up Brady's ass, they keep talking about how wonderful the offensive line is at protecting him. Well, what I've noticed is that everyone is so friggin' afraid of Moss, Welker and Stallworth that they double cover them. Guess what? That means there's no one left to rush the QB! They're showing a slo-mo replay praising the Pats O-line, and there's only 3 guys rushing! Well, of course they'll give the QB great protection if they're double covering every rusher... Even the devastated line of the Skins could protect Campbell against the wonderful incredible Patriots if they were allowed to put 2 linemen against every Pats lineman. Ugh!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Crabcakes v. Lobster

Well, tomorrow afternoon, the 4-2 Washington Redskins take on the unbeaten New England Patriots. Yes, we all know how wonderful Tom Brady is. He is the end-all, be-all of National Football League QBs. At least, that's how the media talks about him. I'd rather they were just up front about it, invited Tom into the broadcast booth, bent over and kissed his ass. At least it would be honest. Personally, I don't have a problem with him. I just have a problem with how far up his butt the broadcasters are.

But I digress. I have a bet with my brother-in-law on tomorrow's game. If the Pats win, then the next time he and my sister are in town, we buy Maryland crabcakes. If the Skins win, they send up Lobsters. I doubt I'll win, but I'm hoping. The primary key to the game will be our offensive line. Having sustained at least five injuries to the O-line in the first six games, we're pretty beat up. If we can stay healthy throughout the game and play like a real, professional football team, we have a fighting chance. I know our defense can match up with the Pats offense. It's just a matter of playing a full 4 quarters and not giving up. Secondary needs to jam the receivers at the line. Andre Carter needs to break through to Brady. Sean Taylor needs an interception or two, and needs to put the fear of God into anyone coming over the middle. But the biggest difference-maker in the game will be how our front line plays. If they can protect Campbell, and open up some holes for Portis & Betts, we have a shot. If we play like we did in the fourth quarter against NYG and the Packers, we might as well forfeit the game now and take another bye week to get healthy. BUT... if we control the line of scrimmage on offense, keep Brady off the field and cover the receivers, we can take down the mighty gods of the AFC and show the NFL what this team is capable of.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Rest In Peace, John Henry

Well, it's a good thing Chrissy and I went to Kentucky when we did. After a long struggle with failing health, including dehydration and kidney failure, John Henry was euthanized last night at 7:00 pm. It was a unanimous decision that was made by his caretakers when he stopped responding to medical care. I was glad I got to meet the old man. He was truly a champion.

"There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man" - Winston Churchill

Monday, October 08, 2007

#1 Passing Offense My Ass...

Much was made of the vaunted passing game of the Lions going in to yesterday's game. But when we reached gametime, the Skins shut down the Lions' entire offense. The Defense held the Lions' offense to 144 total! Only 76 of that was in the air! We held the Lions to 11 first downs. The Lions were 1-10 on 3rd down conversions. One 3rd down conversion in the whole game!! We got 5 sacks on Kitna, including 1 for a safety (not that it's really hard to sack a QB who moves slower than Tippy Turtle). We forced 4 fumbles (didn't recover any of them, though) and had 2 interceptions, one for a TD. Then, our offense finally clicked, too. In a major way. Jason Campbell was 23 for 29 for 248 yards. Despite the fact that our #1 receiver (Moss) was out with an injured hamstring and our #2 (Randle El) went out at the half with the same, Campbell spread the ball around to 8 different receivers.

Speaking of receivers, I have to follow up on my rant yesterday. On the depth chart, Brandon Lloyd is supposed to be the #3 receiver. Moss is out with an injury, so who do they put up opposite Randle El? James Thrash (not that I have anything against Thrash - I don't). But then Randle El goes out at the half, so you figure Lloyd will go in then, right? Wrong. He did actually make it into the game on one play (that I saw) and caught a pass for 9 yards. But they even passed to McCardell twice, and he had only been with the team for six days! There has to be something else going on there. For some reason, Gibbs or Saunders must be pissed off at Lloyd and they're keeping him out. I wish they would just come out and say it. They didn't seem to have a problem bashing Archuleta and Arrington in a roundabout way when they were having problems with them. But they keep saying they want Lloyd involved, but it's hard to be involved from the sideline. Even the commentators in pre-game show were noticing his lack of presence on the field. I just don't get it.

Ok. Enough. The bottom line is, we won 34-3. If we can keep up this level of play, or even close, we have a good shot at shutting down Favre & the Packers this weekend. Go Skins!!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Go Skins!

Well, it's coming up on gametime and it was just announced that Santana Moss is inactive for the game. McCardell & Caldwell will be in, though. More importantly, hopefully that means Brandon Lloyd will get some game time. I don't know why I've taken a shine to Lloyd, but I really want to see him do well. Maybe it's because he seems like such an underdog to me. He's constantly criticized for making too much money and not making enough of a contribution to the team. The problem with that is that it's very difficult to make a contribution when you're not on the field! Gibbs is always saying how much he likes Brandon and thinks the world of him and really wants to see him pulling his weight, but then Lloyd sits on the sideline! Ok, I know we have Moss and Antwaan Randle El, but shit. Put in a 3- or 4-receiver set. While Randle El and Moss are getting double covered, throw to Lloyd. But we consistently put in 2 receivers then run the ball. So much was made of the vaunted Al Saunders offense when he got here, but I've mostly seen the standard Gibbs running attack. Believe me, I understand the need to run the ball. It's like using the jab in boxing to set up the power shots -- you pound away at the line, eat up the clock, force the D to bring in players to stop the run, then you take a shot downfield. I get it. It's just frustrating for me to see Lloyd (or any player, really) criticized for not producing when he's not getting the opportunity to produce.

Ok, I'll get off the soapbox now. Key for the game today - Skins' secondary. Kitna's on a roll, Lions have the #1 pass offense in the league (though that may be a bit misleading*) and the Lions' receivers are huge. The Skins' secondary is going to have to step up and keep the Lions from completing passes. The D-Line is going to have to get pressure on Kitna. Also, the D-Line can not let the 31st-ranked run offense get any yardage against us! But the key is going to be the 1-on-1 coverage of the Resdkins' corners against the Lions' receivers.

Finally, as previously promised, here's a link to my pictures from the Miami game. I found that Photobucket allows direct links, unlike Kodak Gallery. It also allows apparently unlimited uploads, unlike flickr. Kodak does have better photo editing, though, so that remains my primary photo site.

Go Skins!!

*Thus far, the Lions' offense has been up against the 18th, 29th, 17th and 19th-ranked pass defenses (Raiders, Vikings, Eagles and Bears respectively) that have a collective 5-11 record.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Happy Birthday Julie!

We must have said about 15 times in the past 24 hours, "We have to call Julie to wish her a happy birthday." Of course, we got sidetracked by various things and didn't realize that we hadn't called her until about 10:30, at which point, it was too late to call. Ah well. Happy Birthday!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Almost Forgot

Actually, since I'm posting this the next day, I guess I did forget... Anyway, with regard to our Kentucky trip. I forgot one of the best parts. When we were on our tour, our tour guide Shaun took us to this little store called Wallace Station. There, had the most unbelievable bourbon chocolate ice cream! That's right, I said 'bourbon'! In ice cream! In chocolate ice cream! Yummy!!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Horse Porn

Well... Last Tuesday, Chrissy was looking on the web for updates on a horse named John Henry. He is a 32-year old horse (over 100 in human years) who lives at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY. Chrissy had been wanting to go see him at some point and he has been having some health issues recently (no wonder!), so she turns to me and says, "What would you think about going to see John Henry this weekend?" Now, anyone who know Chrissy knows that she likes to plan things out. She's not a big fly-by-the-seat-of-her-pants kinda gal. For once, we didn't have anything planned, so I said, "Why not?" So we made arrangements to leave work early on Friday and hit the road! We stayed in Charleston, WV on Friday night, got up in the morning and headed to Lexington. We went to the Horse Park on Saturday, stayed in Lexington Saturday night, and drove home on Sunday. A lot of driving, but well worth it!

At the Horse Park on Saturday, we went to the Hall of Champions, where John Henry currently resides. My wife is so cute. She made little gift bags for John and all the other horses in the Hall of Champions, as well as for the staff of the Hall. She figured that the horses get gifts all the time, and the people get ignored. She's right, too. The staff was tickled pink! Each of the horses got 3 apples, 3 carrots and some peppermints (horses love them - who knew?). John Henry also got a few bananas and a box of chocolate covered donuts. His doctor has pretty much said he can have whatever he wants, if it gets him to eat, and he loves them! The staff there was wonderful. They talked to us and answered all our questions. They even gave John some of our donuts while we were there talking to them! He's a bit of an ornery, grumpy old man, though, so we didn't get to pet him. He has a tendency to bite. After their presentation, we did get to pet Gypsy Supreme and Western Dreamer a little, though.

In the afternoon, we went on a tour of horse farms. Shaun, our guide, was very knowledgeable and very funny. He took us to several of the horse farms in the area. At one of the farms, there were several young (3-year old or so) thoroughbreds in their stalls and we got to walk right up to them and pet them! They were so sweet!! Our favorite was Fantasyafield. She was such a sweet baby. I think everyone on the bus was ready to take her home. Sean called the owner to see what they would want for her and was told that they had already turned down an offer of $150k. If we were Powerball rich, we would have brought her home.

I know, I know... What in the Hell does this have to do with Horse Porn? Ok. On our tour, we were taken to several horse farms. One of them was WinStar Farm. Some of the greatest living throughbreds alive are there for breeding. One of them, Tiznow, apparently doesn't like going in to the breeding process cold, as it were. With horses at this level, if they don't like something, it doesn't get done. So what happens when Tiznow is supposed to breed? You got it. They have to show him video of two other matings first. Ergo, the title of this post.

So, in any case, I think that's about it. I'll be posting a link for pictures of the whole thing at some point. I'm sure I've forgotten about some things, but that's the short version!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Fall TV

Heroes is back!! Yippee!! Not only is it back, but it's good! I was so worried it would suffer a sophomore slump (yay alliteration), but it sustained! :-) The first episode ended, and per usual, I turned to Chrissy and said, "I love this show..." Premiering before Heroes was Chuck, a new comedy about a computer nerd who accidentally gets a ton of government secrets downloaded into his brain (don't ask). It was decent enough to get a second look. It suffices to fill the time until Heroes comes on at 9. I recorded Journeyman, but haven't watched it. I watched the new remake of Bionic Woman on Tuesday. Again, decent enough to merit a second look. The pilot episoded seemed a little uneven, like it was poorly edited, or maybe the script was pared down to fit a 60-minute show. Again, I recorded Life, but haven't watched it yet. It has Damian Lewis, a British actor whom Chrissy and I really like. He was an excellent asshole in The Forsyte Saga. Smallville premiered last night. It was good, but not spectacular. Fairly predictable. I think the only premiere left is season 3 of Supernatural next Thursday. I think that's my most highly anticipated return after Heroes. Can't wait!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Pod People!

I was thinking about the Redskins game. More specifically, I was thinking about the second half of the Redskins game. I kept saying that it was like a different team came out of the locker room after halftime. Then I remembered the recent Nicole Kidman-starring remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. It hit me. The Redskins went in to the locker room at the half, they fell asleep, and the pods opened up. Their replicas emerged, put on the uniforms and came out on to the field. It all makes sense now...

Sunday, September 23, 2007


Today is the second home game of the Redskins. We play the 0-2 New York Giants and we goin' baby! WOO HOO! It shouldn't be nearly as hot as the Miami game. Not only is it 2 weeks later in the year (happy autumn, everyone), but it's a 4:15 game. When we left the Miami game around 4:00, the sun was just hitting the back of the stadium, so we should be out of sun for the whole game today. I think we have a good shot at going 3-0. The Giants are pretty beat up, not to mention just not playing well. Manning is playing hurt, Burress is a game-time decision. Most of all, besides a win, I hope we spank Shockey. He's a punk and I want us to put him in his place.

In other football news, I have a pretty good lineup in my fantasy league. On a whim, I signed up for a league on NFL.com. Good thing, too, because my friend Keith, who has headed up the Yahoo league I've played in for the past two years, just had a baby! (Congrats, Keith!) So, needless to say, he's been a bit busy and missed something he had to do for our draft. BUT... we had an automated draft on the NFL league. I did pretty well. Both my QBs (McNabb & Favre) are iffy, but I have faith that they'll pull it together. Frank Gore, Randy Moss, Chad Johnson. Denver on defense. I may actually have a shot this year! I've done pretty well in the office football pool, too. I'm actually in 4th place overall. Don't know how long it will last.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

2-0 Baby!!

Ok, so I'm a lousy fan. It took me three whole days to post on the Redskins victory over the Eagles on Monday Night Football. What can I say? Well, despite the many injuries, the offensive line looked pretty good. Campbell is doing well, though I'm sure he's still kicking himself about overthrowing a wide open Moss. Portis is looking good. Defense is kicking butt in general. Don't know what happened in the 4th quarter, though. When Philly was trying its comeback, they ran all over us. Carlos Rogers was a little sporadic in his coverage. Hope that doesn't come back to bite us on the butt. I just hope we can keep the injuries down to a minimum. That's two linemen out (one for the season, the other most likely) in two games. We can't afford that rate of attrition.

P.S. Did you see that hit by Sean Taylor?? YOW!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Hail to the Redskins!

Ok. Usually, I use Kodak Gallery, but it won't let me post a link for a photo album. I can only share photos there by sending out an email. I have, however, seen several blogs where people post a link to photo albums on flickr. So, I uploaded some of the photos of the Redskins game. Unfortunately, without a premium membership, there is a limit to the amount of pictures one can upload at once, so I didn't include all the pictures. If anyone is interested in the remainder of the pictures, either wait until I can upload the rest, or let me know and I can email you the entire album from Kodak.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Excellent Quote

From Milo Ventimiglia (Peter Petrelli on Heroes) in an interview in Men's Fitness magazine. I know, what was I doing reading Men's Fitness? I wasn't. I saw a reprint of the article on a Gilmore Girls fan site. No, I don't (or didn't) watch Gilmore Girls. I found it by a link on Pop Candy, an entertainment blog. In any case... The quote, which may very well be my favorite of any interview I've seen in months, "I would hate it if my publicity overshadowed my actual career. That would suck." Are you listening Britney? Lindsay? Paris? Hmm. Didn't think so.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Washington 16, Miami 13

Well, it was hotter than Hell, but the game was great. It was unbelievably hot. And of course, I didn't think about sunscreen until we were halfway to the game. So I got more sun in 3 hours at the game than I did in a week at the game. It was a learning experience, though. We figured out many things that we had not thought of before. Such as the giant foam #1 finger that I brought, but which stayed in my lap or Chrissy's most of the game. In the future, it stays home. In any case, I had a blast at the game. I think Chrissy is still recovering from heat stroke. She stuck it out to the bitter end, though, God bless her.

Oh, speaking of the beach (as I was earlier), it was great. A whole week this time. It was so nice not having to leave in the middle of the week and come back to work. It wasn't much more expensive either, because we had shifted more toward after Labor Day, when the rates drop. So we stayed more days, but most of them at a lower rate. Overall, I think we paid $40 more than last year and stayed 2 or 3 more nights. The weather was great, too. I think someone was trying to make up for last year, when we arrived at the beginning of a hurricane. This year, it was sunny all week. Warm, but not hot (except for two days that were a bit sweltering).

I guess that's it for now. More later. Hail to the Redskins!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

I Can't Wait!!

Great CNN article about Dexter! Well... good article on CNN about the creator of Dexter. But you get the point. New season starts September 30 on Showtime. Also can't wait until our annual Wildwood vacation! We're going for a whole week this year! Yippee!! Oh, and, of course, the day after we get back, in a rematch of Superbowl VII and XVII, the Redskins play the Dolphins. First home game of my new season tickets! Did I mention I have season tickets to the Skins?

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Michael Vick

Wow. This guy, Jason Whitlock, is my new hero. His column about the Michael Vick situation is pretty dead on. Now, I have never been a big fan of Vick as a football player, but I can't deny that he is a talented athlete. Unfortunately, he squandered his every opportunity. Mr. Whitlock pretty much says it all better than I possibly could.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

On the Lot

Congratulations to Will Bigham, who won the first (and most likely only) season of On the Lot. Million dollar deal with Dreamworks. Not too shabby!

Monday, August 20, 2007


This has been a bad few weeks for people in the creative arts whom I admire. Comic book artist Mike Wieringo passed away from heart failure last weekend. One of my absolute favorite writers, Fred Saberhagen, died of cancer, actually on June 29, but I just found out on August 4th. And, of course, Merv Griffin, who despite all his accomplishments, to me, will always be remembered as the Elevator Killer from The Man with Two Brains. Rest in peace, gentlemen. You will be missed.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Skins v. Steelers

Well, I supposed things could have been much worse. Yes, we lost 12-10. Yes, Jason "Future of the Team" Campbell went down in the first quarter when a 285 lb. defensive end dove headfirst into his knee. Yes, Marcus Washington got caught up in a pile and dislocated his elbow, knocking him out for at least the next game, and likely the rest of preseason. Yes, Mike Espy (not a star player, but a solid backup who was busting his but to earn a roster spot) blew out a knee ligament cutting on a routine pass route. BUT... The D looked solid throughout the whole game, not giving up a single touchdown and repeatedly holding the Steelers back in the red zone. The offense looked crisp through Campbell's two series before his injury, then with Todd Collins through the rest of the first half and into the second. Brandon Lloyd scored his first TD as a Redskin (preseason or no, that's gotta be cool for him). The offense didn't look fantastic under Brunell, but he was playing with 3rd stringers or lower, trying to come from behind within the two-minute warning. I almost had a heart attack when I heard the commentators actually say that you couldn't blame that on Brunell and that he played as well as possible, but was hampered by his circumstances. I really like Brunell and don't think he gets the respect he deserves, from fans or announcers. I also think the reporters were making too big a deal over the order the QBs were playing. Last week Brunell followed Campbell, this week it was Collins. I don't think this was some grand conspiracy to bump Brunell. It is possible though, given how each has been playing, that Collins could move to #2 on the depth chart ahead of Brunell. Don't know how Brunell would take that. I know he said that the only place he was willing to play backup was here, behind Gibbs. Don't know if that included playing 2nd backup. All in all, we looked pretty good. A damn sight better than we did at almost any point last year. I think this year will be a lot like 2 (3?) years ago when the defense carried the team and all the offense had to do was score a TD or two to win the game. I'd like to see better, but I'm keeping my hopes realistic.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

You Can't Make This Shit Up!

A South Carolina inmate is suing Michael Vick for "63,000,000,000.00 Billion dollars," which he would like backed by silver and gold and delivered via UPS to the prison. Why, you say? Because, as inmate Jonathan Riches claims, Vick stole Riches' identity and dogs, sold the dogs on eBay and used the money to buy missiles from Iran. Seriously. He also alleges (because in Amuricuh, you're innocent until proven guilty) that Vick "plead alliengence to Al-qaeda" and subjected Riches "to microwave testing." In his prayer for relief (as it is called - where the plaintiff actually asks for the desired result of the suit), Riches states, "Michael Vick has to stop physically hurting my feelings and dashing my hopes." Not sure how one physically hurts one's feelings...

Apparently, this isn't the first time Jonathan Riches has filed a wacky lawsuit. If you click the link entitled "You be the judge" (at the end of the 2nd paragraph), there is a copy of the 57-page docket (the official register of proceedings in a legal action) composed almost entirely of the list of defendants. These 56 pages of defendants include such varied individuals and entities as Jessica Alba, Jennifer Lopez and Sandra Bullock (I gotta admit, he's got pretty good taste) to Wiccan Worship, WKRP in Cincinnati, Nostradamus (bet he didn't see this one coming), Holy Grail and Huggies. I think my personal favorite is Zeus. Aye caramba.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Skins v. Titans

Well, the Redskins won their first preseason game (did I mention I have season tickets?)! It's wasn't overly pretty, but a win is a win. Campbell looked ok, Brunell looked ok, Collins looked great. The main problem with the the QB situation wasn't the QBs. It was the offensive line. Like last year, though not to the same extent yet I don't think, we are being plagued by injuries. Chris Samuels, Marcus Washington and Randy Thomas are out until regular season. So is Portis. Lloyd just started practicing today. Now Wade (who is still learning a new position), Heyer (an undrafted rookie who is still adjusting to NFL-speed football), and Randle El are hurting. Fortunately, our defense is relatively healthy and looked pretty good against a team who, admittedly, was without their starting quarterback. There's definite room for improvement. When Campbell got time to throw, he looked good. He was checking his options and making the plays. We just need to make sure he gets that time. The running game, without its star player, went nowhere. But again, once the front line starts pulling its considerable weight, that should improve, too. Here's hoping we look better against Pittsburgh this weekend!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

More Harry Potter

Some very interesting reading for those people out there who love Harry Potter as much as Chrissy & I do. This chat transcript is from a fansite called The Leaky Cauldron (named after the pub in the books). In the chat, J.K. Rowling answers questions and reveals many secrets regarding what happened "off-screen" in the books or, perhaps, things which could have been clearer. Fascinating to Potter fans. Boring, I'm sure, to others.

Saturday, July 28, 2007


WOO HOO!! As of yesterday, I have officially joined the ranks of the Washington Redskins season ticket holders!! Yaaaayyyy!!! I have literally been waiting half my life for this. When my friend Rob (best man at my wedding) turned 18 (and I was 19), he said, "Hey, let's get on the waiting list." So we both signed up for the waiting list, figuring that by the time our number came up, we'd be 50 years old and able to afford them. He got his call 7 years ago. When he got the call, I sent an email to the Ticket Office and asked what my status was. They responded that I was 56,844 on the list. I am willing to bet that they lost my original information and put me on the list at that point. Well, a week and a half ago, I got the call. They said there were some late cancellations this year and they had some seats available for this season. The FedEx was delivered to the rental office on Thursday afternoon and I picked it up yesterday morning!

The funny thing was... everyone starts out in the nosebleed seats. As better seats become available, they move you up and sell the nosebleeds to the newbies. Rob already moved up once last year. He started in Row 24, then moved up to Row 21. Guess where my seats are? You got it! Row 21! Same section! Un-friggin-believable! We get our seats 7 years apart and wind up in the same section, same row!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

I tell you. You'd think we were 12-year old kids. Chrissy and I were in Jersey over the weekend. This was a planned trip, so we were having Harry Potter books (yes, we ordered two copies so we could both read it at the same time) delivered there. Noelle ordered her copy, too, so she wouldn't have to wait for Chrissy or me to finish. So we're sitting around talking, when Chrissy's Aunt Nancy calls. She lives right next door, and wanted to know if we could grab her mail when we go out to get ours. The moment we hear the word "mail," all three of us leapt to our feet and ran to the front door. Due to the size of the packages, they were put on the porch instead of in the mailbox. Promptly forgetting about Nancy, we grabbed the boxes, ripped them open, and immediately went to our respective spots in the house and began reading. Although we had originally planned just a day trip, we hit massive amounts of traffic on the way up, didn't feel like sitting in traffic on the way back, so we stayed over. Also, I will admit, there was a degree of not wanting to stop reading. We all read straight through until midnight, when I stopped & went to bed. Chrissy kept reading until around 2:30-3:00, when she was unable to keep her eyes open. Noelle tried going to bed around 2:00, but tossed & turned for an hour before realizing she wouldn't be able to sleep until she finished. She got up to do some yard work with Mom for a couple of hours in the morning. Chrissy & I got up left mid-morning. We got home, ate lunch, and went back to reading. By around 5:30, I had finished and by around 7:00, she finished, at which point, we got on the phone with Noelle to have our post-read discussion. To make a long story short (too late), we all loved it. Did we all agree with every part of the ending? No. But we loved it. I won't go into details yet here, but suffice it to say we all loved it, but are all sad that it is over. I'll try to do a relatively spoiler-free review soon here.

Monday, July 23, 2007

New Baby!!

Congratulations to my sister Jackie and her husband Caleb! They are the proud parents of a gorgeous new little kitty. His name is Puck and he's adorable!! His big brother, Copper, isn't quite sure what to make of the new addition to the family yet, but I think he's getting used to the idea of having company. So, welcome to the family, Puck!

Friday, July 20, 2007


Happy Birthday to my sister Gail! Love you BIG!!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

All Things Potter

Well, we went to see the movie this past weekend and the book comes out on Saturday. First, the movie. I enjoyed the movie quite a bit. I can definitely see why it got semi-mixed reviews. It is apparent to me that the reviews that weren't so hot were written by people who don't read the books. The movie is definitely geared more toward the readers than the previous movies. At 800+ pages, Order of the Phoenix is the longest book. At 138 minutes (or so), Order of the Phoenix is the shortest movie. Goblet of Fire was a long book too, but the movie simply removed some extra sub-plots. In Order of the Phoenix, they left some of the plot points in, but didn't spend much time on them. They briefly referenced them, rather than devote significant screen time to them. I think the filmmakers assumed that the majority of the viewers would know what was going on. As a reader, I was fine with that, but I think many of the movie critics haven't read the books, so they panned the movie.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows comes out this Saturday. We've got our copies ordered from Amazon already. They upgraded to free Saturday shipping so everyone can get the books on the same day as people who go to book stores. My predictions? They're filled with **SPOILERS**, so don't read beyond this if you haven't already read the books. 1) Dumbledore will be back. I think he figured out a way to make a horcrux without killing someone. Perhaps that's what happened to his hand. I can see him getting that twinkle in his eyes and saying, "Sorry, Harry, but I just couldn't resist giving it a try." 2) Snape will turn out to be a good guy. I don't think he should be a good guy. I think he works better as a nemesis to Harry and, perhaps, a misjudgment on Dumbledore's part. Unfortunately, I don't see that happening. 3) J.K. Rowling has stated that at least two people will die. I don't think she's including Voldemort in that. My guess would be maybe Lupin (or one of the other members of the Order) and one of the Weasley parents. I don't think she'll kill off one of the main three kids (four, if you include Ginny). I could see Neville getting killed trying to avenge his parents. Oh, and as a part of this and also #2, I could see Snape sacrificing himself to save Harry. Ugh. I don't think she'd kill Hagrid, either. On the dark side, I think one of the Malfoys will be toast, probably Bellatrix Lestrange, too. 4) Ron & Hermione will officially become a couple and Harry & Ginny will be back together. 5) When all is said & done, Harry should wind up back at Hogwarts as the the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. Maybe the story can flash forward to when Harry has been teaching for several years (breaking the curse) and he & Ginny (married) have just had a son, and Professor Trelawney makes a new prophecy about him growing up to stop another evil wizard. Who knows? I doubt that last part, but I do think Harry should wind up back at the school.

In any case, I'll be sad when it's all over, but it's been a hell of a ride. But you know what? That's the great thing about books. If I'm feeling nostalgic, I just pick up the book and I can experience the magic all over again.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Potter Mania

Well, not much going on to blog about, but the excitement of impending Harry Potter is starting to get to me. The fifth movie opens up Wednesday, and the seventh and final book {SOB!} hits the shelves a week from Saturday. I watched the First Look preview on HBO. I'm seeing the commercials all over the place. I've re-read all six books in preparation. I'm starting to get even more jacked about it! I can't wait! But it will be so sad that after this book comes out, it's all over!! Waaagh!

Oh, and I saw Transformers last week. It kicked some major ass! Toward the end, during the fighting, it got a little hard to tell who were the good robots and who were the bad robots. But you know what? I could have cared less. There were giant f-ing robots kicking each others' asses! Of course, my enjoyment of the movie had nothing at all to do with Megan Fox... Anyway... Where was I? Oh yeah, giant f-ing robots. Awesome special effects. There was not one shot that looked fake or phony. The story was good, but almost incidental. Definitely left it wide open for a sequel.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Pan's Labyrinth

I watched Pan's Labyrinth the other night, and I was pleasantly surprised. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but I shouldn't have been surprised at anything. I read about the movie as they were making it, and I knew what it was about, yet it was somehow unexpected. There were parts that were, maybe unnecessarily, a little violent. I think Guillermo Del Toro might have been trying to get across how brutal Post-Civil War Spain was, or at least how brutal Capitan Vidal was. Pan's Labyrinth tells the story of Ofelia, an 11-year old girl in 1940s Spain. Her father died when she was little, and her mother has recently married a Captain in the Spanish Army, who has been assigned to put down a local rebellion. The Captain is tough with his soldiers and tough with Ofelia. Her only escape is the books of fairy tales she brought with her to her new home. Shortly after arriving, Ofelia is approached by what looks like a large praying mantis-like creature of obvious intelligence. She soon realizes that it is a fairy just like from her stories and it wants her to follow it. She follows it to a maze in the garden, at the center of which she meets a faun. He tells Ofelia that she is really the reincarnation of a princess of a magical kingdom, whose entrance lies in the center of the labyrinth. Her real father, the king, has been awaiting her return for centuries. However, in order to open the gate, she needs to complete three tasks before the full moon, just days away. Feeling that there may be some truth to the faun's story and knowing she would rather be anywhere than with Capitan Vidal, she agrees to do the tasks. In the meantime, the housekeeper, Mercedes, while appearing to be the perfect invisible servant, is helping out her brother, one of the rebels in the woods. Pan's Labyrinth is at once a tender coming of age story, a brutal family drama, a fantastic fairy tale and a political action thriller. I don't know that I would have nominated it for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film, but maybe for Best Original Screenplay. It was nominated for both, but didn't win either. It was one of the most original movies I've seen in quite some time. Definitely worth the price of admission. I highly recommend it.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

New Apartment Tour!

Ok, it only took three months (or so), but here it is. We finally got enough stuff unpacked, put away and cleaned up that I felt OK putting it on video. One of the side effects of having family come to visit is the apartment gets cleaned!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Mom's Birthday

Ok, so I realize that my mom's birthday is in March, and it is now June, but sometimes it just takes a little while for my family to get its shit together. In any case, we got together this weekend for Mom's birthday dinner. My sister Jackie and her husband came down from Boston (had a "fun" trip on AirTran - odd, Chrissy and I have had nothing but good experiences with them), and we picked them up from BWI on Saturday. We got to show them the new place (I think they liked it). My other sister Gail came up with her family from southern MD and met us at Mom's. My aunt Yoko (Mom's sister) flew up from Alabama on Saturday, and her daughter Sandra picked her up. That part was a surprise. We had originally planned on making the whole thing a surprise, but it became too complicated to organize without coming out and asking Mom direct questions, so we just told her what we were doing. In the course of planning, I realized that no one had mentioned Yoko & Sandy (& Sandy's b/f Paul) being there, so we decided to keep that part a secret.

We went to an Annapolis restaurant called Viet-Thai Paradise. It was incredible! The manager, Lyon (pronounced "Leon"), was so helpful getting everything set up with us and planning the menu. Yoko & Sandy showed up about 15 minutes early and brought balloons for Mom's chair. We started with a champagne toast of Chateau Ste Michelle. For the appetizer, they brought out four Combination appetizer trays consisting of Chicken Satay, Lemongrass Beef Skewers, Spring Rolls, Coconut Shrimp and Garden Salad. For entrees, we had Pad Thai (Mom's favorite dish there), Special Fried Rice (with shrimp, pork & crabmeat), Chicken Curry and Bangkok Ka Prow (sautéed pork & veggies). There were a few 33's (a Vietnamese beer), some Toasted Head Viognier and, of course, a few rounds of sake. Kampai! (A Japanese toast - pronounced 'cahm-pie'). Most everyone had dessert there, but a few of us went to Maggie Moo's after! I had a hot fudge sundae (better batter ice cream with Reese's Cups and Kit Kats mixed in) in a waffle bowl. Uuummmmmy!!

If you think life couldn't get any better, think again. On Sunday, we went to Gail & John's place down in St. Mary's. We hung out & chatted. Mom made us gyoza (Japanese pork dumplings). We went out on the water on their little (12' or so) power boat. We had some Grolsch and some Ferrari Carano Merlot. My bro-in-law John, who is a chef, made some ribeye steaks and shrimp stuffed with crab imperial. We finished off the day with cigars from the new shop (Titan Cigar) that opened up across the street from the apartment. Add to all that a loving family and Gail's two adorable puppies (Lady & Penny), and you got a hell of a weekend!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The First Saturday in May

Sunday night, Chrissy and I attended a screening at SilverDocs, a documentary film festival at the AFI Silver Theatre in Silver Spring. The movie was The First Saturday in May, and it is about the Kentucky Derby (which, coincidentally, takes place the first Saturday of every May). We had seen the movie at the Barbaro gathering at Delaware Park [link] back in April, but much of it we saw on the Jumbotron out in the middle of the track and it wasn't too easy to see it or hear it from that far out. It is a much different experience seeing it in a theater. It is a wonderful movie, even if you're not an avid horse race fan.

The Hennigan Brothers (the filmmakers, whom we met both at DE Park and at AFI) stated that their ideal purpose in making this movie was to make horse racing cool again. Back in the day (sorry Roon), the track was the place to be. Thousands upon thousands of people came out to see Seabiscuit take on War Admiral. Unfortunately, through OTBs, internet gambling sites and Hollywood stereotypes, the track has lost some of its luster. Will you see some interesting and, yes, sad characters if you go to the race track? Naturally. Is it the kind of seedy dump that you see in some movies, like Let It Ride? Of course not. Don't get me wrong, I love that movie, and as they say, comedy isn't funny if there isn't a grain of truth in it. But I am able to distinguish the difference between a character in a movie and a real live person, an ability I'm sad to say many people don't possess.

But I digress. The movie follows six hopefuls on their road to the Kentucky Derby. Some of them made it, some of them didn't. What made it interesting was the personalities behind the effort, both the horses and the trainers. One of the horses they followed was the 2006 Derby winner Barbaro. Naturally, they couldn't just ignore what happened after the Derby, but I thought they handled it very well. They didn't show his actual breakdown at the Preakness. They didn't dwell on his death. They did mention his little brother Nicanor, who was born March 15, 2006.

In any case, keep an eye out for this film. It's definitely worth a look. I don't know if they're going to show it anywhere at any other festivals or if it will get picked up for wide release (I doubt it). They are planning on releasing it eventually on DVD. Wake the children, phone the neighbors, tell a friend.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Viking Kittens

Viking Kittens!! God, I love the internet! A few thoughts. 1) Who the hell thinks of these things? Some dude named Joel Veitch, I guess. 2) I wonder if he used pictures of his own kitties. 3) Only the insane, pharmaceutically-fueled genius of Robert Plant & Jimmy Page could come up with a kick-ass rock song about Vikings on the high seas and make it cool. 3a) The same genius is the only way they could work the term "threshing oar" into a rock song. Love it! 4) What made Joel hear this song and think, "Hmmm... Kitties..."? 5) I'm far too easily amused.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

The List

Hmmm... I may have to bump Jessica Alba up on my List. In case you never watched Friends, when Ross & Rachel were originally together, it came up that they each had a List of five celebrities. These were people with whom they were allowed to sleep, consequence-free, in the unlikely event that they ever had the opportunity. My List has been fairly stable for quite a while (in no particular order): Jennifer Lopez, Salma Hayek, Halle Berry, Angelina Jolie and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Actually, J-Lo, Salma & Angelina have been pretty steady at the top, Halle & Catherine have sometimes rotated around in & out of the Top 5, depending on what they're doing and who my flavor o' the month is. For instance, when Ashley Judd was in Double Jeopardy, she probably bumped out CZ-J for a time. When Alias was in its final season, Jennifer Garner may have risen to the Top 5. Given this latest development, should it turn out to be true and not just a publicity stunt for FF2:RotSS, she may move up in the world. Ok, so she's far too young (though not 12, like Chrissy thinks) and not a great actress (but not terrible). I'm a guy. Sue me.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Big Love

Season 2 premiere was on last night. Man, I forgot how good this show is. For those not in the know, Big Love is about a Utah businessman Bill Henrickson, played by Bill Paxton, who is a fundamentalist Mormon. As such, he believes that family (and by extension, plural marriage) is the key to heaven. He has three wives, Barbara, Nikki and Margie, played by Jeanne Tripplehorn, Chloe Sevigny, and Ginnifer Goodwin respectively. Together, they have several children (six? seven?) and live in three houses that share one backyard.

For the most part, the Henricksons are a fairly normal family (apart from the 3 wives/mothers). They worry about money. They wonder if their family can stick together when they're hit with hard times. They worry about what the neighbors think (though perhaps not for the same reasons many others do). Individually, he has fairly normal relationships with his wives. Except for the fact that he rotates nights between houses and between beds. And, of course, the dynamic of the hierarchy between 1st, 2nd and 3rd wives is always interesting.

If you have HBO, enjoy good writing and subtle performances, check it out. It's worth a look.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Hogging Bandwidth

Ok. I did a little more investigating on this bandwidth thing. One of the things that kept being mentioned in this work memo was digital pictures. I was checking my email last night when I got home and noticed two emails I had gotten earlier (Yahoo shows the size of the email files). One was a 4-line response from a comment I had left on a friend's blog. That was 3k. The next email was from Chrissy's cousin Denise, who just got married. It had ten digital pictures from the wedding attached. Ten. That's it. That email was 4,631k. Now, multiply that by all the attorneys, secretaries and other support staff in our firm. Add to that music files, streaming audio, movie clips etc. That's a big difference in bandwidth. I guess I can see their point... Dammit.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007


Well, I got a pop-up on my computer the other day at work. I contacted our Help department and was told that it was a new program being tested. The gist of it was that it looked like they were going to start limiting internet usage on the work computers. Needless to day, I got a little miffed. I got the actual memo from IT today, though, and it's a little more reasonable. Basically, people have been hogging bandwidth by downloading pictures, music and videos or by listening to streaming music and watching videos. So we all have to play nice or no one gets to play at all. That I can live with. Once I read that, I felt bad. I have been listening to streaming radio and do watch the occasional movie trailer. Eeee.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Beat Box Boy

Well... as much as I like Blake, I don't think he's going to be able to win. People are just so enamored of Jordin that I don't think he can beat her. I think he's a better performer and he's got a very good voice, but ultimately, I think her voice is better and that's where people will put their votes. It's a shame. Neither one really should win. Melinda should be the winner. But, alas, it was not meant to be. In any case, Blake will be fine. I'm guessing, much like Chris Daughtry last year, Blake will outsell Jordin on their first albums.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Season Finales

Smallville - Good, but the whole Bizarro Clark felt a little bit forced. I had no problem with the phantom wraith stealing Clark's DNA and making an evil twin, but the "bizarre" reference and subsequent rock-face change felt odd. Someone brought up a good point - why is it every meteor freak, stranded Kryptonian and Clark doppelganger can figure out how to fly in about 2.5 seconds, but Clark (who, by the way, was introduced in Season 1, episode 1 hovering above his sheets accidentally flying in his sleep) can't? But I digress. Does anyone really think Lana is dead? No. Lionel is possible, but I seriously doubt it. Same for Chloe. I really hope Chloe isn't, because I really like her. I'd rather seen Lana bite it before her. But in any case, Erica Durance (Lois) has already stated in an interview that Chloe's not really dead.

Supernatural - Can't really comment on it, since we haven't watched the 2-part finale yet. Chrissy never wants to watch Supernatural during dinner because of the unexpected carnage that can happen at any moment on that show. Then, once dinner's over, we're usually in to whatever is on that night. I'm sure it kicked ass. It always does. I'm jacked that I just got the first season off of eBay, too. Can't wait to watch that, too.

Heroes - I was a little let down. But really, as good as the rest of the season was, how could I not be? It didn't really feel like the end of a chapter, as they promised. It felt closer to just another episode cliffhanger. I'm sure Peter's not dead, since he has Claire's power. Matt & DL probably aren't dead, since they showed both of them alive. Sylar certainly doesn't appear dead, since there was the blood trail leading in to the sewer. Not a very big battle royale. My biggest problem, though, was that the entire final scene didn't match what Peter had foreseen. It was at night, on the plaza in front of the building and Claire was in plain clothes. Every time Peter had a vision or there was any reference to the events all season, it was daytime in the middle of the street (deserted) and Claire was in her cheerleader uniform. I'm sure there were many other discrepancies, too. Maybe the writers did it intentionally to show that "the future isn't written in stone" or something, but it just felt a bit rushed. Almost like they filmed the first half of the season thinking that they wouldn't last and the event they were building up to was irrelevant, because they would only have time for half a season before they were cancelled. Then, oops. The show was a hit. So they wrote the second half of the season on the fly and tried to make it decent. Except it was far more than decent right up until last night. Then it kind of... deflated. Another continuity error - when Nikki knocks out Candice (who was casting the illusion that she looked like Jessica), Candice reverts back to her regular appearance. In the previous episode, though, Candice admitted to Micah that she didn't look like that and implied (through what she said and the fact that she was eating french fries and potato chips the entire episode) that she was at least somewhat overweight. I know, I'm a geek. Anyhow, I still enjoyed the majority of the episode more than 90% of television out there, but it was just a bit of a letdown. Oh, and am I the only one who thinks Hiro is Kensai, the legend about whom he grew up reading?

24 - Kicked ass, as usual. I was glad no one else died. I was sure when Bill Buchanan went to help Jack out that he would get killed. Chrissy and I both knew right away when Chloe passed out that she was pregnant. I'm glad she & Morris made up. They're good together. Let's just hope he can stay off the sauce. Nadia is so hot. I was also glad that Bill & Karen aren't going to wind up in the slammer. They did what was right. Josh is so totally Jack's kid. He looks nothing like his "dad" and Jack obviously had something with Marilyn (another hottie!) before she married Graem. Jack's dad is still alive, too, I'm sure. It goes back to the old comic book axiom - if you don't actually see them die in front of your eyes, they're not dead. One problem, though - all the loose ends! What happened to Palmer? What about Charles Logan? What about Martha Logan and Aaron Pierce? It's all good, though.

We'll see what happens on the finale of Idol tonight & tomorrow night. Go Blake!! Oh, and Lost tomorrow night.

Thursday, May 17, 2007


Ok, I didn't see that one coming. I think the same thing happened to Melinda that happened to Chris Daughtry last year. So many people just expected that he would win, that they didn't bother voting for him. Same with Melinda this year. Ah well. On with the poll:

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


Ok, this kind of shit really pisses me off. Someone actually paid 72.8 million dollars for that??!? What the hell is wrong with people? Intellectually, I get the idea of abstract art. Well, I guess I really don't. I may be culturally challenged, and maybe I should be ashamed to admit this, but before this article, I had never heard of Mark Rothko. I had seen some of his work at one of the D.C. museums (probably the Hirshorn and/or NGA), but not realized who the artist was. I had the same reaction then that I have now, "That's art?" Now, check out the feature on the NGA's website (click Rothko's name above). Some of the work under "early years" and even "myths & symbols" may not be my cup of tea or preferred style, but at least they look like something. Now check out Untitled [No. 4]. Am I missing something? It's a friggin' black canvas! Aye yi yi!

Ok, enough of that. I'm gonna have an aneurysm if I keep this up. Other stuff. Idol. Blake kicked ass last night. Unfortunatley, the judges & everyone else seems so far up Jordin's butt, I'm afraid she'll be staying & Blake will be going home. I don't think there's a chance Melinda will go home tonight. She's just too good.

I saw Spider-Man 3 last weekend and it rocked. I definitely think it suffered from Trilogy Fever, being 3rd in the trilogy, it was the weakest. There were several ways I would have done the movie differently (but they didn't ask me, dammit), but I still enjoyed it immensely.

And last, but not least, Happy Birthday to my friend Al, from New Jersey. You may have seen his wife's comments (she's Julie B) on this very blog! We haven't seen them in a little while, but that doesn't mean we don't wish him a very happy birthday! Have a good one, Al!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Disco Sucks

Well, the idols were mentored last night by Barry Gibb and they sang songs written, produced or performed by him. The problem with this premise is, basically (as the title of this post says), that disco sucks. The Bee Gees were great... for the 70's disco era. But today, not so much. The songs aren't very good, they don't work in 2007, and they aren't good choices for today's youth to sing. What this amounted to was a fairly boring, lackluster show. No one had a great night, or a great performance, for that matter. Some were better than others and some did better on one song than another, but by & large, they all had rough nights. I won't do a play-by-play. Basically, the only one who could do anything with any of the songs was Blake. He "made the songs his own," as the judges always say they want, but never like. Not that his performances were great, but at least he did something with them. Unfortunately, I think he has the weakest voice of the remaining contestants. Fortunately, though, he's a better performer and makes better song choices. I think Lakisha will go home tonight.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Bon Jovi Week

This week, the Idols were mentored by and sang songs from Jon Bon Jovi. It was a pretty good week. Phil started off great singing Blaze of Glory. Given the recent emergence of Phil's country roots, and the fact that this song was from the soundtrack of a Western, it was an excellent song choice. He definitely worked in some of the country twang into the rock of the song and started the show off with a bang. Jordin, clearly out of her element singing rock, struggled through Living on a Prayer. She looked pretty scary, too, trying to cultivate that rocker-chick look. Not good. Lakisha redeemed herself after last week's shaky performance. I wasn't overly familiar with the song, but it didn't matter. She made it her bitch. I don't blame Simon for wanting to kiss her. Blake took a big risk changing up You Give Love a Bad Name. It paid off, IMHO. It was a star-making performance. Not the best vocals of the night, or even his best, but best performance so far. I think Simon was right, though, that half the people (including me) will love it and half will hate it. But you know what? He did exactly what they ask for week in and week out - he made it his own. In any case, I think he'll have enough votes from last week that he will be safe. As usual, I thought Chris was whiney and nasal. Didn't care for his rendition Wanted Dead or Alive for that, but even worse, that was one of the songs that Chris Daughtry absolutely sang last year and absolutely rocked the house! Chris' version paled in comparison even more. Melinda closed with Have a Nice Day. Not her best, but still Melinda. So she'll stay. It's a tough call, since we're taking two weeks into account for tonight. Chris is definitely going. Lakisha's a possibility, as discussed last week, but I think she redeemed herself this week. Jordin should go, but it will probably be Phil.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


I think Lakisha might bite it tonight. It probably shouldn't be her, but America doesn't like big girls. If not Lakisha, probably Phil. I thought Phil did really well, but he always seems to land at the bottom. I still don't like Chris. I agree with Simon, he's too nasal and too whiney. Blake rocked it as usual. Melinda was great, also as usual. I think the judge's heard a different performance for Jordin than we did. I didn't care for it. There were several pitchy spots. They're so up her ass it's not funny. And if I hear Randy say she's 17 one more time, I'll scream. It's not 17-year-old Idol. I could give a rat's ass if she's better than every 17-year old out there. She's not as good as Blake or Melinda, or even as good as Phil has been for the last two weeks. But she can do no wrong in their eyes. In any case, I think it will be Lakisha tonight. Like I said before, big girls have to be perfect in every other way in order to advance on Idol and she has struggled for two weeks now. It should be Chris, but I doubt it will be. I hope it's not Phil. He has really stepped it up the past two weeks and doesn't deserve to go this week. I don't think he'll make it to the final, but he should hang on for now. Maybe he'll be this year's Elliot Yamin and make it to the final three with Melinda and Blake!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Harry Potter

This weekend, I finished reading Order of the Phoenix. I forgot how good it is. I don't think the Harry Potter books get enough credit for how good they are, because people tend to dismiss them as kids' books, but the writing really is very good. Rowling, I think, really remembers what it is like to be a teenager. I hope the movie does the book justice.

Thursday, April 19, 2007


Lawd ha' mussy! I thought Sanjaya was never gonna get voted off! I definitely don't think Blake should have been in the bottom 3, but I wasn't shocked. I think Chris got a lot of sympathy votes from the folks that thought Simon was rolling his eyes at Virginia Tech. I didn't think that for a second. I thought he was rolling his eyes at the same thing I was rolling mine at: I thought Chris brought up Tech to curry favor because he knew he was in trouble. I know he's from Virginia and he probably does have some friends that go there, but it just seemed like a suck-up move. In any case, thank God it's over. Sanjaya is gone. I feel sorry for the other 9 finalists that have to go on the Top 10 tour with him this summer...

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Phil = Country? Who Knew??

It was Country Night on Idol last night and who should be a closet country music fan, but Phil Stacey? Who would have expected it? Certainly not me! He has not shown the slightest indication of wanting anything to do with country music before last night. I don't remember what his audition song was, but I don't think it was a country song. I tell you, though, he rocked the house! I think he was easily the best performance of the night and started off with a bang. I said to Chrissy, when they went to commercial and said Jordin was coming up next, "I bet Jordin will do a Martina McBride song." She just seems like the type. I think she thinks enough of herself to do a song by the mentor-of-the-week. Don't get me wrong, I think she's very good, but I think she is a little full of herself (Chrissy says a lot). I don't think I saw the same performance the judges did, though. I thought it was a bit boring and too loud. Sanjaya sucked as usual and his hair looked ridiculous. Lakisha struggled singing "Jesus Take the Wheel." I think she was very obviously out of her comfort zone and it showed. This will be a rough week for her. I think Simon nailed it on the head when he critiqued Chris. I think he did sound nasally, and when Chris tried to say that it was "the style," it sounded like BS. Also, when Chris mentioned VA Tech, it seemed very contrived. I hope not. He's from Virginia, so I hope it was genuine. That's what I think Simon was rolling his eyes at. Melinda kicked ass. Surprise, surprise. She seemed very comfortable singing country. She's got what Taylor had last year. It doesn't matter the genre or theme, they just have the talent to fit in and perform well. Blake has that, too, but I don't think to the extent that Melinda & Taylor have. He had one or too "pitchy" points (as they say), but overall a very solid performance. Especially for someone who doesn't appear to have a country bone in his body.

I think the reason they wait so late in the finals to do the Country theme is because there are always so many people who aren't comfortable with it. If there are fewer contestants, then there are fewer bad performances. Sanjaya, Lakisha and Chris should be in the bottom three and (I know I've said it before, but) Sanjaya should go home. Really. He was so bad, even the audience didn't seem overly thrilled with his performance. Usually they cheer for him like he's one of the Beatles. Last night, they just politely applauded. He better go home tonight...

Monday, April 16, 2007


Edward Norton has been cast in The Incredible Hulk, the sequel/franchise reboot of Ang Lee's Hulk. Damn, but this is good news! As much as I enjoyed the first movie, for whatever reason, it didn't live up to expectations. Now, I have mentioned before how unreasonable I thought those expectations were, so I won't go in to that here. After all, with a $137M budget, I can see how they would be disappointed with a $62M opening weekend and a final total of $377M worldwide. But I digress. They decided to rework things for the next movie. So they got Louis Leterrier (of Transporter fame) to direct and have stated that they will amp up the action in the sequel. That had me worried. Part of what makes the Hulk great is the Jekyll/Hyde psychological aspect, so I was worried they would completely disregard that part and just go for a Hulk-Smash-fest. I'm actually surprised Norton signed up for this. He has normally eschewed (yes, I went to college) big budget, Hollywood roles in favor for more intimate fare. Granted, he has done schlock like The Italian Job (which I do actually like) just to fulfill contractual obligations, but normally, he chooses his roles very carefully. Hopefully, this is a good sign that he sees something in Leterrier and in the script that leads him to believe that, despite the big budget and high profile, this movie is quality material. Hell, even when he phones it in, his performance is better than 90% of the actors in Hollywood.

Saturday, April 14, 2007


Happy Birthday to my niece & nephew!! Today, they are 21 and 15 respectively! Hope you have a great one guys!! Love you BIG!!!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

I Knew It!

It's not my fault! It has nothing to do with the crap I eat. It's all in my genes!

Jurassic Park Time

Researchers decode T Rex genetic material

Very cool! We're, like, 3 steps away from cloning a T-Rex. I remember seeing an article a while back (jeez, looks like 10 years!) about a woolly mammoth that they found fairly well preserved in ice. There was talk at that time regarding whether or not it would be possible to clone a mammoth. I'm sure it's only a matter of time before science advances to the point that it is possible. Once it's possible, no doubt it will be done. Oh, love the line about the T-Rex tasting like chicken. :-)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Latin Night on Idol

For Latin Night last night, the Idols had Jennifer Lopez for their mentor. Mmmm... JLo... I'm sorry. Where was I? Oh yes, Idol. For the most part, Latin Night was pretty lackluster. No one really did great except for Blake. Melinda started off looking great, sounding good, and actually pulling off sultry. Lakeisha did ok with Conga. I think she may have a rough time this week. I don't get the whole Chris thing. He's so whiney and nasal. Haley, I get. She's not great, but Simon nailed it right on the head. Skimply clothing is her strategy, and that is what has gotten her this far. The judges didn't seem to like Phil, but I thought he did very well. The "voice crack" in the end seemed more a stylistic choice than a failing in talent, but maybe that's just me. Jordin struggled with turn the beat around. I actually think she & Haley would have done well switching songs. The styles would have suited them better. Oh, and I don't care for the nose ring. I think that was new last week. Ick. Blake rocked the house singing I Need to Know by JLo's hubby, Marc Anthony. Excellent song choice and excellent performance. Although, I must confess, I was hoping he'd sing La Vida Loca. Now, for the painful part - Sanjaya was actually good last night. I think he benefitted from 2 things: 1) good hair (no faux-hawk); 2) no movement, he sat still on stage. My guess: Lakeisha, Haley and Phil in the bottom 3 with Haley going home. I could see Lakeisha going, basically because of the Mandisa-factor (big girls on Idol pretty much have to be perfect in every other regard - one slip in singin or clothing choice and America (especially voting teen America) will pounce), but I think it will be Haley. Especially since Simon called her on the skimpy-clothes strategy, which made her seem very uncomfortable that he called her on it. I think that tactic only really works in a don't-ask-don't-tell sort of way. Once it's out in the open that she's doing that, it loses its draw.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Only in D.C.

Pearls Before Breakfast - washingtonpost.com

Wow. I don't know that I have ever heard anything as beautiful or read anything so sad. Ok, so maybe it's not that bad. I mean, it's not a woman selling her daughter for money to buy crack or students being run over in Tiananmen Square. But the story moved me like most stories don't these days. There's only so many times you can hear about a wife killing her husband for insurance money or a drunk truck driver plowing through a family on the Beltway before you start to get numb. Now, I don't profess to be an expert in classical music, and I'm ashamed to admit I hadn't heard of Joshua Bell before I read this article, but holy mackerel! Even through the lousy, hidden-camera audio streaming over the internet, I could hear that this man is a master. I think the beauty of the music made such a sharp contrast to the sadness of the article - Here was one of the world's greatest living violinists and everyone was so wrapped up in their own little world that they didn't even notice he was there! It was amazing, sad, beautiful and pathetic all at the same time.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Ok, This is Getting Boring

I'm not even bothering to predict Sanjaya's Idol demise this week. Actually, I just as I started to write this came up with a new theory on Sanjaya. I think he sold his soul to Satan. That would explain his otherwise inexplicable rise to power. Regardless of how/why, his success is robbing me of my joie de vivre, so I'll make this quick and painless. Blake, Melinda Jordin, and Lakisha all kicked butt. Gina and (believe it or not) Chris did really well, too. I think Gina's close to hitting the wall in terms of her ability. She's just not in the same league as Lakisha or Melinda. I was worried with Chris, because I love that song, and he's always whiney, but that was probably his best performance. Didn't butcher the song like I thought he would. Phil did ok, as did Haley (hot! - but Chrissy thinks she's a skank). Sanjaya sucked, as usual. But since he made his deal, he won't even be in the bottom 3. That honor will go to Phil, Gina and Haley with Phil getting the boot.

On a non-Idol note, yesterday, I had the worst allergy attack I've had in years. Literally, probably 10-12 years. Don't know what it was, but I heard tree pollen was high yesterday. I had to run to CVS in the middle of the day to buy some Actifed and tissues. By that point, I looked like a cocaine addict. My eyes were completely red, I was sniffling and/or sneezing constantly. Not a pretty picture. By the end of the day, I was a little loopy from the anti-histimine, but doing ok. Looked like Rudolph, though. Much better today. I think the rain has taken some of the allergens out of the air. Don't know why it hit me so bad yesterday. I've been taking my Loratadine religiously. I hope I'm not building an immunity to it.

Oh, and in my fantasy headline of the day: Halle Berry says she wishes we could all be "inside her right now"... Well, just like I married Chrissy knowing she'd leave me for Dale, Jr., she's always known that Halle Berry's in my Top 5.

P.S. The Shield, season 6 premiere last night! WOO HOO!! It's back, baby!!

Friday, March 30, 2007

Distill My Heart

Distill My Heart is a horse at Woodford Reserve Stables. For those of you who don't know, Woodford Reserve is a small-batch bourbon. It is, I believe, the official bourbon of the Kentucky Derby. Oddly enough, though, the Early Times Mint Julep is the official Mint Julep. Even more odd is the fact that the Early Times that is sold in the U.S. can't even be called bourbon, by definition. It's whiskey. Something to do with the aging process. But I digress. Woodford Reserve is a distillery that makes bourbon. They also have a small stable with 2 thoroughbred horses. One, Angel's Share, is still racing (and kicking equine booty). The other, Distill My Heart (love that name!), has started breeding and just gave birth to a little girl on Monday! She's so adorable! She looks just like her mommy! So adorable! Just had to share...

Oh. We "cooked" our first meal in the new apartment last night. We had spaghetti and meatballs, with salad & Texas toast. We're still settling in, so we wanted something quick and easy. With our work schedules, most of our weekday dinners are q&e meals. Hopefully, we'll get to the point where we can cook and/or prep on weekends and have decent dinners during the week!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Faux-Hawk?

Aye caramba. If Sanjaya doesn't go this week, then he's got a good chance of winning the whole kit & kaboodle. Chris R still seemed kinda whiney. Haley was still hot, but not very good. Chris S is still having trouble with song choice and sticking with the beat. But Sanjay has just gone off the deep end. I think he finally lost it. He has realized that there's a good chance that it doesn't matter what he does, he'll get votes, so he's just going ape-shit. I don't even think he was trying to sing well last night. Also, I think he put a lot of people off with the bizarre hairdo last night. Gina did really well. Phil kicked butt. Jordin did great for a 17-year old. Too bad she's on American Idol and not 17-Year Old Idol. Lakisha & Melinda killed, as usual. I have heard that if Sanjaya wins, Simon will refuse to come back next year. I don't blame him. I probably won't be back, either. I would be hesitant to return if he even makes it in the top 5! He better go tonight.

Anyway, enough Idol for now. The Big Move was this past weekend. I have but no clue how we managed to accumulate so much stuff! It's unbelievable! We had taken over about 5 car loads ahead of The Move, then loaded a 15-foot truck and at least partially loaded 5 cars, and still have more stuff. We made two trips on Monday, one trip last night, and are going back tonight with two cars. Tonight should be the last of it. *knock wood* We'll swing by Friday night to check mail and drop off the keys, and that will be it! Yaayy! Of course, we're still trying to figure out where everything goes in the new place. But we've put away about... oh... 75% of it or so. As the place gets lived in, we'll probably wind up moving some stuff, but for now, it's getting put away.

So far, the place is great. Even though in terms of square footage, it's not leaps & bounds bigger than our old place, it feels much bigger. The kitchen is bigger. It's great having two bathrooms. We've got our new HDTV hooked up. So sweet! The new bed, queen size, is super comfy. Loving that. There are only a few downers: 1) no balcony; 2) no fireplace (not that I expect one in our price range); 3) parking's not great, but it's do-able; 3.5) Buddy's staying at his grandmommy's in Jersey until Easter (it's only temporary - that's why it gets the 1/2). He was a little stressed when we were packing and was a little confused with a new environment, so we decided to let him stay in Jersey for a couple weeks while we put everything away. By the time we bring him back, he probably won't even remember the old place! He's not too bright sometimes...

Once everything is presentable, I'll do a new video tour. Oh, I know I said enough Idol (sorry Julie), but I do have to brag just a little that I predicted Stephanie's departure last week. All the entertainment news outlets seemed to be quite surprised by it. Guess they should have asked me!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Tough Call

Pretty much everybody stepped it up this week. It's going to be a tough call figuring out who's getting the boot this week. Haley started off with Tell Him, which always makes me think of Ally McBeal. With her hot pants, halter and 6-inch heels, she looked like a bit like a street walker. A very cute street walker, but a street walker nonetheless. She did pretty good with her performance, though. Miles better than she did in the opening weeks of the final rounds. Chris R. followed with Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying. The judges loved him, but I thought he was a bit whiney and nasal. I'm sure the teen girls will love him, though. Stephanie sang You Don't Have to Say You Love Me. She sang well, but she just has a real problem with song selection. She needs to pick some more well known mainstream songs that will involve the audience. She's gotten by on her talent so far, but talent alone won't carry her through to the end. Blake rocked the house with Time of the Season. Perfect song choice for him. The beatboxing worked perfectly with how the original song goes. Lakisha did well singing Bond. Not my favorite performance, but she's still incredible. Thought Phil did well with Tobacco Road. I wasn't familiar with the song, but he sang it well and had a lot of fun with it. Up tempo, good beat. I wasn't familiar with Jordin's song, but to paraphrase Ricky Bobby, she made that song her bitch. Loved Simon's comment on Sanjaya's performance of The Kinks. Agreed completely. I though Sanjaya did better than he had been doing, but he simply has no place in the top 12. He really shouldn't be there. He's not even in the same league as Phil or Gina, who aren't in the same league with Lakisha and Melinda. It was painful, but not as painful as it could have been. Gina did pretty well singing the Stones. Not sure how the performance will play with the teen voting audience, though. Chris S kicked some bootay singing She's Not There. I was shocked and disappointed that Chrissy didn't know that song. I even downloaded the original and played it for her. She just stared blankly then shrugged and said, "Sorry." *sigh* Anyway, the Chris we all know & love is back. Melinda finished strong with As Long as He Needs Me. I don't care for the vibrato in Melinda's voice, but she is, I think, probably the best singer on the show. She's going to be hard to beat.

As far as who goes home, check the title of this post. Sanjay should go home, but as we've already seen, that probably won't happen. If not Sanjaya, I would say Chris R should go home, but he'll probably get the teenybop JT fans voting for the SexyBack lookalike. I'm hoping Phil doesn't go because I thought he did pretty well. I'm actually going to go for the upset and say Stephanie's going home tonight, but really, it's anyone's call. I think Melinda, Lakisha, Chris S, Jordin and Blake should absolutely be safe after last night, but beyond that it's anyone's guess. And even those, who knows?