Tuesday, December 26, 2006
I was able to spend some quality time with my best friend Mike over the weekend. For those of you keeping score at home, this is the same Mike who backed out (albeit with plenty of notice) of being the best man at my wedding due to some irrational boss issues. We were finally able to bring any issues remaining from that to closure. It was great seeing Mike. There was a group dinner on Saturday and we got to see Mike, Kyria and some friends we only see at these group dinners.
Love was just fantastic. I can't wait to see more Cirque shows. Plus, it was extra special since I got to see it with my wife!
Our Christmas plans got moved around a lot between my stomach issues and then trying to coordinate with my sister so that we could open gifts as a family. We were able to come to a compromise, but I wasn't able to keep a promise I made to Amy, namely taking her to see Dreamgirls. I promise that I will do it before the end of the year. Vegas Princess and Prince Charming were able to join us for dinner, which was lovely.
All in all, not a shabby holiday. I got to spend it with my wife and my family. What more could I ask for?
Monday, December 18, 2006
Since there was a break between Hanukkah and Christmas this year, we decided to go to LA for her family's Hanukkah party. This was my first real family function. Her cousin's wedding in July really doesn't count, because everyone was sort of split up. We flew in on Friday and finished up some last minute shopping.
Saturday was crazy. We were staying in the Valley. We needed to wrap gifts. So Amy got up early and wrapped gifts. We headed to a friend's house in the city for brunch and gifts. We can never spend too much time with these folks. They are among our favorite people. Then, we dashed back to the hotel to meet up with her Dad to have our own private Hanukkah with him. That was nice. Amy loved her gifts from her Dad and I, and mine were awesome. We got Hal a digital camera and photo printer. Then off to Ventura (about an hour away) for the Kaltman Family Hanukkah party. That ended up being a lot of fun. We spend some time with her aunts, uncles, cousins and their kids. I practiced the Hebrew prayers so as to not embarrass myself. However, they had the kids do it and I was off the hook.
Sunday was nuts. Went to a friend's house in the Valley for her son's second birthday party. I think my ears are still ringing. I talked to her friend's Dad most of time. They said they were trying to save me, but I was enjoying myself. Then off to her Mom's house to meet with a doll merchant. That was rough. Finally, we headed out to lunch and then off to the airport.
We are having friends over tomorrow for dinner, latkes and candles. It should be a good time.
I should excuse myself so that I can get back to work on my Hebrew. Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam...
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
First, the wackjobs in Pahrump. This is the small town in Nye County, Nevada - where prostitution is legal, I might add - that recently passed an ordinance making English the official language of the town; depriving illegal immigrants of all public services administered by the the town which at last count, was simply police protection and the sheriff has said he wouldn't enforce it; and finally illegal to fly a foreign flag without also flying the US flag. That was evidently just the first act.
Last night, in the current board's final meeting in its current makeup they same Councilman that proposed the previous resolution introduced one that went even further - all "undocumented foreign nationals" to register themselves at the Town Office within 24 hours of arrival and pay a $200 fee. They would need to fill out a form listing relatives in Nevada and provide a list of all forged or counterfeit documents they might hold. Failure to do so would result in a fine and jail time. Finally, if any non-governmental agency challenges the ordinance in court, they first would need to shell out $20K to cover any costs incurred by the town. Call it the "ACLU clause."
I am not unsympathetic to their frustration. I do happen to believe that something needs to be done to address illegal immigration. Whether it is more funding so that existing laws can be enforced or coming up with a new comprehensive plan, we need leadership from the federal government because this is more a national, not a state or local issue. Plus, this resolution is essentially unenforcable. Do you expect undocumented nationals to 1. register in the first place, 2. have $200 and 3. essentially confess to breaking the law by listing all the illegally obtained documents they hold? And how do you know exactly who is here legally vs. illegally? Road-side checkpoints? Stopping people on the street randomly?
We need common sense solutions - not these xenophobic and short-minded band-aids. Enough on local wackjobs.
Leading the list of international wackjobs this week is Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his Holocaust conference. One of the tenets was that either the Holocaust was 1. A fabrication or 2. an exaggeration. There is physical evidence that the Holocaust took place and if anything, is typically under-reported. If you ask your typical person how many people died in the Nazi death camps, you'll hear the number of 6 million. However, a total of 9 million people died in Concentration Camps. Six million Jews perished, but nearly 3 million Gypsies, Communists and other "non-Aryans" were shipped off to death camps as well.
This guy gets a lot of press for saying wacky things. You almost have to wonder if it is just a publicity stunt or what...
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Another classic How I Met Your Mother. Between sick Barney and trying to figure out which really bad word Ted said (oh come on - you know you were trying to figure it out too!), just hilarious.
The Class was good. I agree with the TV Guide people, the more we get to know Duncan, Amy and I can't understand why he still lives with his mother. (Note to self - do NOT get Amy a stripper pole for our first anniversary.)
Two and a Half Men, while crude, had some good moments. The constant Rose and Bertha narration was great, a Susan Sullivan had a great guest spot.
The New Adventures of Old Christine is starting to grow on us again. Tonight's episode - Prius vs. Hummer - was somewhat indicative of the change that Amy's dealing with going from her Civic to a Honda Pilot.
In spite of all of the good TV, we managed to get through most of the Holiday cards - without a fight. Sunday's Holiday Card session wasn't quite as smooth as we got ourselves into a fight over passive aggression other people being rude.
Unfortunately, this evening of good TV and holiday cards was the by product of Amy cracking a crown. We had originally planned to go out with some friends last night. They were meeting up with some of their other friends from church. We like hanging out with them, and some of their friends are fun. All things considered, we just needed to stay in last night, I think. Besides, there was ice cream to eat!
Monday, December 11, 2006
1. It was a really good football weekend. I missed watching the Bills school the Jets in New Jersey 31-13. However, I did manage to watch the Cowboys get their buts kicked by Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints 42-17 in Texas Stadium. That was great. I feel bad for Lora and my brother in law this morning. That smack-down must still hurt.
2. Amy's Nana is reading the Book of Mormon. She's 92 and Jewish. I don't really think she has any intention of converting. Frankly, I can't really see her sitting through a three hour church service. I think she's reading it like a trashy novel - kept referring to it as "her book." Who would have thunk it - Mormon Nana.
3. Wrapping up holiday shopping. I think we just need to finish up Amy's little cousins, and I need to get one more thing for Amy.
4. Mom is working 40 hours this week. What's upsetting to us is that she is working three nights. Tonight, she's scheduled until 10:30 p.m. I know it's her life and as long as she's happy, but driving 35-45 minutes one direction, and she's a tentative driver makes me nervous on her way home.
5. Had some fun putting together our Bissell carpet cleaner last night - a chore made manditory with Rosebud once again using the carpet as her litter box. It was just a disaster from the start. First, when I put the hose in its holster, I inadevertly depressed the trigger and got water EVERYWHERE. Then the brushes stopped spinning, so I needed to take the thing apart, clean out the pet hair, and then it worked again. That's why they tell you to vacuum first. After that, it was fine. The carpet got cleaned and I think I got most of the urine up.
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
Things I love:
- Holiday cheer - people are generally nicer and most, well, humane
- Gingerbread Lattes at Starbucks (although they don't seem as yummy as in the past)
- Spending time with friends and family. This is mine and Amy's first Christmas together married, and our first in the new house. That's exciting to me.
- Giving a gift so perfect that it makes the recipient cry (in the good way.)
Things I hate:
- Holiday shopping. I usually do OK deciding what to get people, but when I can't figure it out, I can't stand walking around stores looking for things.
- The Mall. While people are happier this time of year, they are absolutely miserable while hunting people down for parking spaces, fighting over this year's "must have" toy and the like.
- Holiday cards. I like receiving them, and sending them, but I always put it off until too late.
- Holiday decorating. Too much effort for two weeks worth of enjoyment.
Anyway, I'm mostly glad the holidays are here. If for no other reason that I get to spend more time with Amy!
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
An interesting piece on how the Southern Nevada print media needs to elevate their game on Nevada Today. While it is written by Tom Gallagher, who brings his own bias, he has a very valid point.
Speaking of bringing their "A Game," another classic episode of How I Met Your Mother. It just keeps getting more and more funny, if possible.
I hope we see more episodes of The Class like last nights. Something that starts bringing the octet together more often instead of watching 3-4 story lines inone show will make the show stronger.
Amy rocks. Her oatmeal-craisin-chocolate chip cookies rule.
Blech. We really haven't started Christmas shopping yet. Our window for online shopping is getting smaller and smaller.
Looks like we are going to one of our favorite Henderson hangouts on Thursday, which is cool. However, I'm not sure if they are going to be serving food much after Friday. This may be our last chance to get our fix.
Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. Ours was fantastic - flaming marshmallows and all.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Amy and I really have gotten into The Class. It's a cute little show but it's almost like three-four little shows in one. You don't see a lot of cross-group interaction and that makes for a little confusion. Two and a Half Men was just classic. Absolutely classic.
Unfortunately, the events of the last few months have found us with little time to catch up on TiVo, so I haven't seen much CSI this year, and Amy's really wanted to watch Heroes, but shows we already like such as Studio 60 are taking up space on our DVR. I don't really see us getting too much more time to catch up, but I could be wrong.
Now I have to find a way to get that song from How I Met Your Mother out of my head!
Monday, November 13, 2006
So on this most recent India trip, I once again forgot to take a camera. Not that there was much to see. When I'm in India, I get up, go to work, go back to the hotel and go to sleep. I really should get in some sightseeing, but that would require extra time, and my time there is short and I don't want to extend my trip because I really just want to get home. I'll get pictures eventually, I promise.
It was really interesting watching the US Mid-Term elections over there. First off, BBC World carried election returns like CNN or a US-based network would. While the Indian news outlets weren't quite as focused on it, they still got more coverage than I was expecting. Even my co-workers were talking to me about it. I was amazed at the level of interest.
Other than that, I'm glad to be home!
Friday, November 03, 2006
The honeymoon was awesome. From our arrival at the Grand Lido Negril, we knew we were in paradise. Our room was all of 30 paces off the main beach, and the whole trip was about relaxation and rejuvenation. While about 3/4 of the way through our second full day Amy got a little antsy do start doing things, all in all it was just what the doctor ordered to help destress after the events of the last six months and start our marriage out fresh. I won't go into boring details about what we did and the like, just know that we loved the resort so much, we have seriously talked about making it a regular on the vacation circuit. It will always be a special place to us.
So now, back to the grindstone. I'm off on Saturday for a week in India, but I also think I'm coming down with something. I'll be ODing on Airborne and Mucinex D from now until then. Hopefully I can kick this before it becomes a full-blown thing.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
What's starting to depress me are the folks that are now backing out. Yesterday, my Aunt and my Mom's older sister called her to say she wasn't feeling well and wouldn't be able to make it. Given all the weather issues they had in Buffalo last week, I'm not really surprised. Then my cousin called last night. She is having a "procedure" done on Friday morning and won't be able to travel from Maryland until at least 10 a.m. ET on Sunday. She's going to see if she can make it, though. That would bring my grand total of one aunt, two uncles, and eight cousins plus five significant others attending down to one uncle. Most have good reasons. Not working right now, no child care, unknown legal issues - the list goes on. I do realize that all of these people are gravy to the day, but it would still be nice to have them around.
Anyway, the honeymoon is confirmed, today is Amy's last day worked until we get back! I probably won't post again until we are back from Jamaica. We'll take plenty of photos and will publish some of the more PG-rated ones!
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
I'm an American League guy. The National League Championship Series between the Cardinals and the Mets is only slightly interesting to me. It will get more attention because the biggest draws will be in bigger media markets. However the American League, for my money is where it is at. You have two smaller market teams. The Tigers are just three years removed from a 119-loss season. Everyone wondered if the A's could make it out of the division series.
To rip off a phrase from Major League Baseball, I LIVE FOR THIS!
Monday, October 02, 2006
Two main highlights from last week. First, last Monday was my Mom's birthday. Initially she had asked to go out for Chinese food, but my Dad took her to a buffet on her birthday so she could have Chinese food. While I realize that isn't true Chinese food, we took her for Mexican. My Dad, for his part, opted to stay home. I'll admit I was a little disappointed in Dad. You can usually make something work. Had he been a little flexible, we would have taken Mom to someplace where maybe Dad could have had a cheeseburger or something. But since he wasn't we went to Cabo in the Santa Fe Station.
My Mom loved it. Not only did she get a chance to have a second birthday dinner, but she got to try something new. She got herself sort of a Mexican Prime Rib stew. It was a little spicy, but she enjoyed it. I got chicken enchiladas, while Amy got a combination plate. She tried a little bit of everything. She enjoyed herself so much that we have decided to make this a regular thing where we go out without my Dad.
The second highlight is that the majority of the wedding is now paid for. It is a very good feeling. I can't believe it's less than three weeks. I'm sure Amy will go into a little more detail on the wedding blog, so you may want to check over there.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
In other sports news, it is encouraging to see the Buffalo Sabres are pre-season picks to advance far in the Stanley Cup playoffs. If only these predictions held true. I like it better when my teams defy expectations and "over-achieve."
The Bills lost this weekend to the Jets. My sister and her husband made it to the game. Got a sweatheart deal on tickets thanks to her best friend's husband. Seventeen rows up from the 40 yard line. I didn't catch the game, but it looked competitive, save the three turnover differential.
I'm trying to make heads or tails out of this Terrell Owens drama. I'm not sure if it is a publicity stunt or what. He's just one emotionally damaged man, that's for sure.
Anyway, Go A's, looking forward to hockey season and the Bills play Minnesota this weekend.
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
The Class was very cute. Sort of a next generation of Friends. We'll see how this one plays out. I hope Andrea Anders doesn't have a Joey curse...
How I Met Your Mother should really be titled Barney's Guide to Awesomeness. It's such a great, great character. His delivery and facial expressions are fantastic. As other blogs have mentioned, it will be interesting to see how things develop between Marshall and Lily should Lily come back. I think she will, if for no other reason because Robin needs a female friend on the show.
Two and a Half Men was relatively predictable, although the running gag about how long Alan's marriage was going to last was pretty funny - especially considering his first wife won it.
Oh. My. God. I was looking forward to the premiere of Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, and boy did it deliver. We got thrown directly into the action. Judd Hirsch did a great guest spot bemoaning the state of television today, it will be interesting to see Steven Webber play a hard-ass. The "big three" of Amanda Peet, Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford will be a good triumvirate to watch develop. Very, very smart television. That's all I have to say. I know I'll be watching every week.
The only show we didn't watch was Weeds, but we'll catch that tonight. Besides, it wasn't a premiere, it was getting late and we were really kind of sleepy.
Monday, September 18, 2006
On the sports front, it was a GREAT weekend. First, the A's swept the White Sox. This, combined with at least two Angels losses put the A's up 7 games. Yes, they have seven games against the Angels left, but it is entirely possible they could wrap up the division at home this week. I'm all for them closing it out before the season-ending series in Anaheim. I love the drama of a pennant race as much as the next fan, but not when it includes my team. Second, the Bills beat Miami 16-6 in Miami! What made it even more impressive is they did it with as many as 5 rookies on Defense. While their stats weren't pretty, they kept Daunte Culpepper looking like a rookie, which was awesome. This is going to be an interesting year.
Amy had her bridal shower this past weekend. She thought she was going to be uncomfortable with so many people paying attention to her. It was mostly happy for her, with just a twinge of sadness. Thanks to Teri and Lora for throwing Amy has an awesome shower!
The pets are still struggling on their road to socialization. The cats basically hide under the bed if the dogs are in the bedroom and if the dogs aren't in the bedroom, they don't leave the room. However, on the positive side, I think we are on track to get the dogs back on dry food. The smell of the wet food grosses Amy out and it was becoming quite the pain to mix dry and canned.
Work is busy, but that's a good thing. Amy heads back to work tomorrow and we are off to LA this weekend for the High Holy Days!
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
She'll be home resting the remainder of the week. She doesn't return to work until Tuesday of next week.
Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers. I have no doubt that it helped!
Monday, September 11, 2006
Speaking of football, Amy, Dad and I treked from Aliante to Green Valley to watch our beloved Bills kick off another year. In typical Bills fashion, they started out strong, kept the Pats off balance and ran out to an early lead. However, after being stopped short on 4th and 1 (which I agree with the call to go for it), they seemed to fall apart and they lost the game by 2 points. I know this is a team in transition, but a 5 year transition? I would like to see the playoffs some time soon....
Caught up on some TiVo this weekend. I'm man enough to admit that I watch a daytime drama and have for years. On Thursday, Guiding Light celebrated it's 15,000th episode. It started out as a very religious show, with a candle or "guiding light" in the window of the minister's house (the same guy that played the dad on Soap). Anywya, they've been broadcasting for over 60 years. It's just very impressive, that's all.
I was reading an article about the new season of The Simpsons. During that article Matt Groening made a comment that made me think - whatever happened to the Rumpus Room? You don't hear about those anymore.
We got some wedding stuff done. I'll let Amy update you on those, and she's having her surgery tomorrow morning. Please keep her/us in your thoughts and prayers.
Friday, September 08, 2006
This was something of a rough week. The reality of the situation is starting to set in, and with Amy's impending surgery on Tuesday it's getting a little bit more real. Oh yeah - and I was dumb enough to read the death certificate with the time of death on it too. I'm still glad we weren't in the room as things went south, but we were really just there maybe 30 minutes before to be honest.
Wedding invitation responses are starting to trickle in. Most of my family won't be able to make it in for the wedding. Too expensive or work commitments. My Mom's siblings will be here and at least one cousin on that side will make it, which will be nice.
My Dad's brother had his travel arrangements all set and now he won't be able to make it. It's a little sad - he is my Godfather and all, but I figure it must be really important because he was definitely looking forward to the wedding. I'm not sure if any cousins on that side will make it - we've gotten one formal decline, one verbal decline and one "we might make it." I suspect the one I haven't heard from yet is probably not going to make it either.
As we expected, the brunt of the issues are emanating from Amy's family. The "grapevine" is telling us that at least two cousins are "pissed" that we are having a no kids wedding. We've gotten their declines already. It's making Amy very sad because she is afraid she will be persona non grata in her family and she's hurting. I want to fix it, but no that I can't. Ultimately, playing the "what if" game isn't going to get us very far.
The person originally slated to be my best man is not going to be able to make the wedding. My feelings are hurt, and we had several looooooooong talks about it. In the end, I can't expend the energy being upset. Too much other stuff is going on and ultimately, it's not going to change the end result.
I guess my real feeling is that there are only five people that need to be there - the officiant, two witnesses and Amy and I. Everyone else is gravy and if they aren't going to be there, they are going to miss one hell of a party!
This weekend should be pretty uneventful. We have friends coming over for dinner on Saturday night. Hopefully the pool will be warm enough (it was 78 a few minutes ago, and I just pulled the cover back on) to go in. The moral of that story is don't leave the solar cover off for 5 days especially when it gets windy and rainy. Sunday is the return of football. Amy and I are picking Dad up at 8:30 so we get a good seat at the bar! GO BILLS!
Monday, September 04, 2006
Saturday, Amy and I ran some errands early. As you may have heard, one of our new dogs spent quite a bit of time at the vet's office this week. The good news is that she's feeling better. The bad news is that she was only eating canned food. I don't mind the smell, but Amy can't stand it. I bought a couple of can's at the vet's office Friday, but needed more and on Saturday while Amy was at Kohl's running a couple of errands, I went to PetSmart. $20 later in canned food (barely enough for the week), we were on our way to Costco to spend more money than planned. From there Amy and Teri went to run some more errands and go to the Mall.
I, on the other hand, opted to go upgrade my cell phone. I've been w/Cingular for two years now and it was time to upgrade. I went from an itty bitty Nokia to my new itty bitty Motorola SLVR. It's freakin' awesome so far. I've only had it a couple of days, but I'm pretty happy thus far.
Saturday night we went to dinner at a friend's house in Southern Highlands. We came to the realization that we really couldn't live further apart, as we live in Aliante. The drive home wasn't that bad as we made it home in about 30 minutes.
Sunday was relatively lazy as Amy was recovering from a reaction to prescription cough syrup. My Mom and I went to pick up Amy's wedding band at the store, and I showed her mine. I thought she wa going to cry. Mom was very excited. While we were out, I bought Amy a paid of Crocs clogs. They are ugly as sin, but from what I understand damn comfortable.
Monday was nice a relaxing. Shopped for a flat panel monitor for Amy, swam for a little while and just generally hung out together. Top that off with a pizza dinner and life doesn't get much better.
Hope your weekends were relaxing...
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
Second, most of you know that the last couple of weeks have been a little rough. While I am working through my emotions, I cannot begin to fathom what Amy is going through. All I can do is be supportive.
We have decided to adopt Leni's two dogs. Rosebud and Thorndyke. Both are Lasso mixes. Very cute dogs. I am more of a cat person myself, but these two pooches are really cute - but expensive. We just spent a bunch of cash on Rosebud at the vet. She is a generally healthy dog with some mild, but treatable, health issues. In our efforts to help socialize the dogs with the cats, we have been locking them up in Amy's office during the day. Well, left on his own today, Thorny decided to vent his displeasure on the carpet. He pulled it away from the tack, chewed it and destroyed the pad. We now have a carpet repairman coming out on Thursday.
Work is getting busy again. Getting ready to plan my next India trip. I know I haven't developed the photos from my last trip, but I will...eventually.
Hope all is well on your fronts...
Sunday, August 13, 2006
Cingular Wireless sent me a notice a couple of weeks ago regarding an upgraded SIM chip. Said it was important and service-impacting, but when I finally made it into a Cingular store, they couldn't tell me WHY I needed this new chip. "It will improve your service." Kinda like to know how still...
The bigger news was that I finally made it to church this weekend. Went to the 4 p.m. Saturday Mass. In the end, I was glad that I went. The readings were very timely with everything going on in our life these days, and the priest did a good job of tying everything together with his Homily. The non-religious part of the message was that we just need to take life one day at a time and that every life has a purpose. It was very reassuring, actually.
Hope everyone else had a great weekend! This week should be hectic with the Shower/Bachelor Party prep going on ahead of the main events this weekend. My boss is back from vacation, so that should be fun too.
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
Second, as you may have read on Amy's or our wedding blog, we were thrown for a medical loop last week. It is forcing us to deal with some issues sooner rather than later. It's tough. *sarcasm on* It's what every couple wants to be staring down two months before their wedding. *sarcasm off* We'll be OK in the long run, it's just tough right now.
This weekend is a bit disjointed, but then on to the following weekend with the Bridal Shower and Bachelor Party!
Sunday, July 30, 2006
Friday, July 28, 2006
I guess I have a lot of homework to do prior to voting in the primary...Ugh.
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
Well, as many of you know, Amy and I made the trip to Southern California this past weekend to attend her cousin's wedding and to be there for her Dad's back surgery. What you may not have known, is that the weekend was made a hell of a lot easier with the assistance on my new toy - The Magellan Roadmate 700.
I got my unit for a fairly reasonable price (free). But I have to tell you, this thing is a must for roadtrips. First, it calculates the best route for the trip with estimated times and mileage. It guides you on freeways with multiple off ramps and merges with a lot of ease. It even has numerous "points of interest" pre-loaded such as hotels, hospitals and restaurants.
A good example of how useful it was came into play Saturday night. We were going to a reception at Amy's Aunt's house. We plugged in the address, and were happily on our way. We got on the 405 with no issues, and we were told to get off at the Olympic/Pico Exit (it displays your next manuever at the bottom of the screen. Unfortunately, there was a sign that said the Olympic/Pico exit was closed. So we got off on the exit before it, and the Magellan was able to recalculate our route and led us straight in. It got us to and from the hospital with no issues and even got us out of LA with minimal issues. The only thing it didn't solve for us was LA traffic and I'm afraid there is no solution for that.
While these things are still pretty pricey, it's definitely something to look into for your next major roadtrip.
Thursday, July 13, 2006
Now that the American League has won yet another All-Star Game, and secured home field advantage in the World Series, it's time for the real baseball to start being played. Everything up to now has been a mere warm up. Oakland has done a better job of staying in contention this year than in the past. They are tied for first, but the Angels are coming on fast. With the surprising strength of the AL Central this year, I think the A's are going to have to win their division they need to stay healthy and fight off the Angels.
I am so over the "Big Ben" motorcycle drama. I appreciate the guy's story and all, but the reality is that he was riding a motorcycle without a helmet. He was in a bad accident, but lots of people get into near-fatal accidents every day and you don't see them getting headline treatment on ESPN.com.
Speaking of football, training camps open soon. Football season is a mere two months away. Need to start getting my Fantasy Draft list ready...
Got my car serviced yesterday ahead of our trip to LA this weekend. I don't know why, but I always feel more secure in my vehicle after it's had it's oil changed. It wasn't a cheap day. I had skipped the 15K mile service on my car, so I got that caught up, had the AC serviced and had my Smog Check. About three times more than I wanted to spend, but at least the car is checked out and ready to go.
I got hooked on VH1's "I Love the 70s:Volume 2" last night. Truth be told, it was the one from 1973. I was laughing so hard, I nearly cried.
I nearly vomited when I read the story about Ken Lay's funeral yesterday. Comparing him to Martin Luther King, Jr. was insulting enough, but to compare him to Jesus? That makes me so angry that I can barely see straight.
Friday, July 07, 2006
First, I hope everyone had a happy and safe July 4th holiday. Amy and I did. Got to show of the new house, spent some time in the pool. Too bad it rained on Tuesday, though.
Our backyard is nearly done. All they need to do now is install an automatic fertilizer system. It's been trying, I'll say that much. First, they took longer than they originally committed and we needed to teach them the basics of customer service (i.e. returning phone calls within a business day). Then, they left a big pile of rock in front of our house over the weekend. And just when you figure they were home-free, their was a major miscommunication over the flagstone seating area. Anyway, it's mostly done now and looks good.
Amy's been home sick the last two days. Upper respiratory infection. Yick. To make matters worse, she couldn't get in to see her doctor until at least Monday, which I think is asinine. Well...she'll get better coverage after the wedding.
Wedding plans are moving along. Hit a couple of unexpected snafus this week that we'll need to work through. Neither of us are thrilled, but we will make it work.
Finally, work is going OK. All my clients are happy for the most part and that makes my life tremendously easier.
Next week will be a little hectic. Going to LA for Amy's cousin's wedding and her Dad is having surgery the day after. I need to get my car in to be looked at before that, but it promises to be a decent weekend.
Friday, June 30, 2006
We have real problems in this country. Don't waste taxpayers time with silly resolutions!
Monday, June 26, 2006
The only complaint I have is the Capriotti's near our new house doesn't stock the little bundt cakes from Nothing Bundt Cakes. That makes me sad, but I really don't need to extra carbs after eating one of their sandwiches, so it's really not that big of a deal.
Back to our regularly scheduled programming...
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
The point is that while change may be the only real constant in life, there are some things that are constant as well. As an example, baseball season is really just heating up. We are about two months into the Major League Baseball season. And like clockwork, the Oakland A's are starting to heat up. They have recently had a 10 game winning streak and after a better April and May than they've had in recent years, they are well positioned for another pennant run.
For my birthday, Amy got me a 10 game pack of seats to the 51s, which is pretty cool. I've got tickets to four games in July, so I'll get to see a lot of baseball.
Our pool should be ready to swim in by this weekend, which is freakin' awesome. Can't wait. It's over 100 like everyday, so the pool will be nice and refreshing.
Anyway, a little disjointed, but all I can say is Go A's.
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
I am really getting sick of news outlets. And politicians. No doubt you have seen the accusations of the mis-spending of FEMA relief cards. What was supposed to help people get back on their feet is being spent by, what I am sure is a very small minority, on things that may be wasteful. My retort is - what the heck do you expect? You give people free money to spend and they are going to do just that - spend it. So what if they used it to buy football tickets, porn or a sex change operation. A knee-jerk federal reaction to help over-compensate for their piss-poor response to Hurricane Katrina has caused this. I guess my point is, who really cares? Is it really anybody's business?
For the second time, the Senate has failed to pass a "Protect Marriage" amendment. In my opinion, big deal. While Same-Sex Marriage is an important issue to some, it isn't the most pressing issue facing the country today. Neither is a flag burning. The only people who care about flag burning are in Washington, DC. Of course it's popular to support a "Don't burn the flag" amendment. However, do you know how many instances there have been of flag burning in the past year? Two, that we know of. That's it. Two. It's not a real issue facing this country.
My point is, we have very real problems in this country today. I just don't think these are among the top 10. It's just it's easier to excite a political base with these issues and the special interest groups are well funded...
One of the down sides of the new house is how far we are from certain things. Like the Airport. Having taken two day-trips in the last two weeks, the new distance is not really all that fun. I got spoiled living in Green Valley, I guess. The second thing is nice restaurants are far too. Now, it was nice to meet David out for Indian food, but the trek from Aliante to the corner of Flamingo and Paradise is a bit far for it to become a regular thing. My boss asked if we found any nice restaurants, and the unfortunate answer is no. Maybe we need to take advantage of the concierge service we got with this house and start finding those "hidden gems."
Other than that, just waiting on the pool to be done. It should be plastered and filled on Friday which is pretty cool. Still unpacking. Feels like it will never end, but would like everything done by July 4th. It's always nice to set goals...
Until next time,
Monday, June 05, 2006
First, I am very, very proud of this year's Buffalo Sabres. For a team that wasn't supposed to do much of anything much less make it to the Conference Finals. In the end, they had too many injuries to their defensemen and frankly looked tired. Oh, and that delay of game penalty that led to go-ahead goal was a little lame, but oh well.
Second, now that all is left of hockey are the Stanley Cup finals, time to turn my attention to baseball full-board. It's time to vote for the starters in the MLB All Star game. Now, I'm all for making sure the best players get in, but I'm sick of the starting line up look like the best of the Yankees and Red Sox lineups, so I'm asking all of you in Blog-land to vote. Specifically, for Eric Chavez and Nick Swisher of the Oakland A's. Both are off to the best starts ever. You may have to write-in Nick as an outfielder, but Chavez in the Third Baseman. You can access the ballot from mlb.com.
Finally, on a completely different topic, TV Land ran a 48 hour Benson marathon. I remember loving that show as a kid. Not so much now. I mean, I appreciate that the butler from Soap was able to work himself up to Lt. Governor, but still. Are there any shows you used to watch that aren't quite what you remembered them to be?
Thursday, June 01, 2006
Anyhoo. Like I said, this looks like petty partisan bickering to me. This gossip is worse than high school. In the grand scheme of things, free boxing tickets is small potatoes compared to the other corruption scandals to hit Washington this year. It's already fallen off the national stage. Let's hope it falls off the radar locally as well in the near future.
Sunday, May 28, 2006
The trips themselves were OK. I took an earlier flight out of Singapore (cutting my layover from 10 hours to 3) that got me home about 4 hours earlier, but had a stopover in Tokyo. I wasn't able to get upgraded because business class was just full, but I got an exit row seat. I'm really racking up the frequent flier miles on these trips. Those will come in handy, I'm sure.
While I was gone, the pool deck was poured, Amy got the house uber-organized and got her house mostly cleaned out. Today's my Dad's birthday, so I'm taking him to watch a hockey game. That should be fun.
Anyway, you'll get a more organized post in a few days once I get the photos back.
Friday, May 19, 2006
- The West Wing - This is one of my all-time favorite shows. While it's experienced some down years the last few seasons, it definitely ended on a high note. This was one of the best seasons since the last election season. It was nice to see Josh and Donna get together finally and see the transition. While I firmly believe the show had run it's course, I will be sad to see it gone. I'm now going to have to start collecting season box sets.
- Grey's Anatomy - This is one of Amy's favorite shows. I'll watch it, I just don't seek it out. I liked it, up until Meredith (who I think is uber-whiny) hooked up with Derek again.
- How I Met Your Mother - Great show. Great season ender with Ted and Robin finally doing the deed, thanks if part to Ted's dramatic gesture. I totally saw Lily and Marshall splitting up...for now. Also, I love the "Pause" feature. If you saw the show, you'll know what I'm talking about.
- Two and A Half Men - That show cracks me up. 'Nuff said.
- That 70's Show - Oh my God! I have not laughed that hard at this show all season. It was good to see Eric (Topher Grace) and Kelso (Ashton Kutcher) come back for the final episode. It was hilarious to watch Kitty give the house tour. Cracked me up. Most of the loose ends wrapped up. Bringing back "The Circle" and Hyde talking about the car that runs on water was a hoot. Amy wants to know if Donna goes off to college finally, but I think she does. Finally, nice touch having it end New Year's Eve, 1979. Perfect.
I still need to watch the Will and Grace and CSI finales, and will catch the ones from this week once I return from India.
What were some of your favorite season-enders?
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
- Mother's Day was very nice. Leni was in town for the weekend, and we were able to spend some quality time with her. On Sunday, we had a brunch at the house for our Moms and then took them out for dinner that night. It was a nice day.
- As you have read from both mine and Amy's blogs, we are really settling into our home nicely. Still need to hang up art and unpack some boxes, but it's starting to all come together.
- We have a tenant for the townhouse! That's very exciting. One less thing to stress about.
- Our pool is really starting to take shape, literally. The plumbing, electrical and steel work were done last week. We passed inspection Monday, and they poured the concrete this morning. It's really starting to take shape now. All we have to do is finalize the tile/grout/decking selections and we're off and running!
- American Idol is down to the final three. I have a feeling that Elliot's time may be up. I had initially thought he would go home a lot earlier, but he's grown on me.
Anyway, that's all for now!
That's about all for right now.
Friday, May 12, 2006
- Amy and I are now settling into our home. The pets moved in last night and the home theatre is now setup. Starting to feel like home now.
- The "parade of trades" round 1 is complete. A bunch of folks need to come back, but that's OK. The majority of the work is done. Also, figured out how to use the SmartBox. That's cool. Wish I didn't need to router, but oh well. Now I just need to organize that cabinet.
- Leni's here for Mother's Day weekend. She came in last night and is here until Tuesday. I'm glad she'll be able to spend some quality time here and see the house.
- After all the hub-bub of Chris getting voted off American Idol, I really think that was the best thing for him. He could have easily sailed to the finals and then get stuck making a Pop Album that he would have hated. Now he can practically write his own ticket.
- One other thing for those that are belly-aching about Chris being voted off - did you vote for him?
- Mom and Dad update - their backyard is nearly finished, and should hopefully be done by the weekend. They are uber-excited.
- Booked my next trip to India. Working it in such a way that I spend a little less time away from home, but not much.
Talk to you all later...
Monday, May 08, 2006
So anyway, the move itself wasn't horrible. This being said, it wasn't the most organized move I've ever had. It was not boding well from the beginning. I usually take a week off to move, unpack and get settled. I didn't have that luxury this time. Amy took off Thursday and Friday, and I was off Friday. However it just wasn't enough. First, our initial plan was totally killed because of delays with the carpet. "What do you mean our work order fell behind a file cabinet?" pretty much sums that up. That compressed the schedule and the move took longer because the movers then needed to collect my stuff from my storage unit. Teri and Josh were a huge help unpacking boxes and helping us get stuff setup.
For all of our planning, though, we still have what I'll call the "parade of trades" coming through the house. This morning was hectic and Wednesday and Thursday morning will be more of the same. Hopefully I can still get some work done. When it's done life will be awesome. That's all I have to say, but it will be hard to beat how we feel right now!
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Anyway, after we got home from another night of running stuff over to the new house, we got home and settled in for two of our favorite sitcoms and PIE!
First, the pie. Strawberries and Creme for Marie Callendars. Kinda messy, but really yummy. You should try it, plus it's on sale. mmmm.....pie......
Anyway, we've really gotten ourselves into How I Met Your Mother and Two and a Half Men. I know Two and a Half Men has been on for a few years, but I don't think I realized how funny it is. The dynamic between Charlie Sheen and Jon Cryer is hilarious. The little kid that plays Jake is funny, but the show doesn't really revolve around him, so it's not like he needs to carry the show a la Webster. If you haven't watched it, you should give it a second look.
How I Met Your Mother is just the best show on. Neil Patrick Harris is a hoot and a half! His Barney character is definitely a scene-stealer and last night was no exception. His efforts to sneak into the prom were great. It was good to see Ted and Robin get back on the road to friendship, but do I sense Lily's angst growing and see a Friends'-style wedding escape?
Finally, I leave you with a funny sounding word (no - not ointment). Inertia. It's our new favorite word. Try and use it at least once in a casual conversation today.
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
All alone in our new house. It's ours. I still don't think it's real and I am waiting for someone to come by and say it isn't. We had dinner in the house tonight and then basically hung out there and picked out our carpet. I won't think it is real until our furniture is in and we actually are sleeping there.
But for now, we have the keys and Amy and I are going to be so happy there and I can't think of anyone that I'd rather be doing this with...
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Anyway, I vote for who I voted for, and will hope that Ace (or is it Bret...) goes home tomorrow night.
Monday, April 17, 2006
- My house officially "closed" on Friday. Just in time for me to take the proceeds and write the down payment on the new house.
- The new house is damn near done. It's looks FANTASTIC. We'll still be picky when we do our walkthrough, but things are really coming together.
- We bought our appliances over the weekend. Got killer deals at The Great Indoors. Better prices on Kenmore products than Sears. Can you believe it?
- For the record, we got a 25 cubic foot French Door, bottom freezer fridge with an ice maker and water dispenser. Very cool. The washer is a High Efficiency Top Loading washer, with the matching dryer.
- Meeting the carpet guy and a blind company out at the house tomorrow for measurements. Let the fun begin!
- Looks like I'm going back to India in a month or so. Guess this means I should go in for the second Hepatitis A and B shot.
- My boss is on vacation this week. It's good because I don't have him bugging me. It's bad because he left me covering his position.
That's all for now. It's nap time and I have a call at 6:30 tomorrow morning...
Thursday, April 13, 2006
But there is something about selling a house - especially your first house - that is sad. While I only lived there a little more than two years, I wasn't there as long as I thought I was going to be. But then again, I had no idea I was going to meet Amy. And that's what brings it all back into perspective for me. While I was literally closing the door on one stage of my life, I am moving on to such a better place.
There is always a sentimental portion to packing. I came across a lot of old stuff that brought back a lot of memories, both of times in the house and times from further in the past. It was kind of fun thinking through it.
A couple of random thoughts to go along with this. As most of you know, I spent my entire life in Las Vegas living in the Henderson/Green Valley area. I knew the Eastern corridor south of the Beltway was congested, but it was really bad yesterday. If I didn't know how much houses went for in Seven Hills and Anthem, I might feel bad for the people living out there. I just know I'm glad I am not going to be one of them.
While I didn't think that it was Bucky's time to go on American Idol, I would agree with some of the other posts out there that as long as Ace keeps showing off his arms and those "deer in the headlights" eyes, there is a faction that won't abandon him.
Friday, April 07, 2006
In the past, I've used public radio as my escape. That was helpful at drive time, but I didn't get to hear much music (not that you do on commercial radio these days either, but still). I decided this year to pledge some money to the local public radio station because I find they provide a valueable service.
I've since added satellite radio to my line up and that rocks. I'm going to have to find some new stations as one of the ones I listen to regularly is about to add commercials, but XM is creating a commercial-free alternative for that station, so it'll work.
I'm I alone in being fed up with commercial radio? I supposed not, but would like to hear some thoughts from you all out there.
Wednesday, April 05, 2006
- Amy and I saw Rent on stage on Sunday afternoon. Very enjoyable. Better than the movie, although I thought Rosario Dawson was a weak Mimi...this chick in the stage version was worse.
- Mitch and Samantha were in town this week. Made for a long Monday and Tuesday, but we had a good time hanging out with them.
- So what sucks about friends coming into town, especially living in Las Vegas, is that people are on vacation and want to party. We can't always take off of work when they are here, so it just makes for some long nights and days afterward.
- Getting things moving forward again on all sorts of fronts. Reviewed the engagement photos and we are now making a concerted effort to eat healthier and reduce our calorie count. Next step - back in the gym!
- I will be completely moved out of my house this weekend. The closing date is set from April 14th
- Busy sports weekend. 51s game on Friday, hockey game on Saturday. However, at least we know our weekend plans!
Sunday, April 02, 2006
- I moved the vast majority of my stuff yesterday. The move took nearly 5 hours. The movers were extraordinarily slow to the point I am going to complain. I knew it would take long than my typical move, but still. And there still wasn't enough room in the storage unit for everything.
- Today is the first anniverary of Amy's and my first date. She really liked her gift, which made me happy.
- I am watching Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan again this morning for like the 50th time or something sick. This is the best of all the Star Trek movies, but I have a hard time recalling most of the movies with the The Next Generation cast. I think it's because, as a friend of mine once put it, they were just two hour long TV episodes on the big screen.
- I am trying to come up with a solid post on organized religion and my thoughts on it. Haven't had the chance to really flush out my statements, but it's coming.
- Today is Opening Day for Major League Baseball! Tomorrow the fun really starts. I may have to set myself up downstairs for that...
- The Sabres are in a little bit of a tailspin. Hopefully they can pull themselves out of it before the playoffs.
- We sign the docs on our house in less than three weeks!
- I am now re-addicted to the game Civilization. I spent numerous hours during my undergrad years playing this game. It's a cool game, and I remember why. Too bad I installed it on Amy's desktop instead of the laptop. Might have to do that so Amy and I can be up here at the same time.
Monday, March 27, 2006
The house is coming along fantastically! The tile is almost all laid, the block wall is in and the garage door is on. It looks fantastic! It's nearly done, and we are getting the loan docs ready.
My house is being inspected today. That should be the last hurdle and we'll be good to go.
Anyway, another weekend and another week.
Thursday, March 23, 2006
The unfortunate part about changing jobs is that you lose a TON of vacation time, so I'm rebuilding my bank. I've been off on my birthday the last three years. But I opted to work this year and save the time for our honeymoon. However, the day ended up getting booked solid, so it was a pretty frantic day.
After work, it was off to dinner with Amy and my folks. I had no idea where we were going - I thought for sure we were going to Binion's Ranch Steakhouse. Well, I was 1/3 right. We ended up a Circus Circus Steakhouse. OMG! It was fantastic! Different than Binion's, but just as good. We'll add it to the list of special occasion restaurants. Then I got my gifts from my folks and Amy. I got my typical gift from Mom and Dad, which was nice. Then I opened Amy's gift. It was in a big box, that was pretty light. I had no idea. I opened it, to find a 10-game pack for the 51s! That is way cool!
If my birthday day was this good, I can't wait until this weekend!
Monday, March 20, 2006
We went to three stores this weekend looking at appliances - Sears, Home Depot and The Great Indoors, which is owned by Sears. We were amazed and the selection in terms of all appliances. Luckily, we knew what we were sort of in the mood for. We've pretty much settled on our refridgerator. We knew we wanted a bottom freezer, french-door style unit with a filter, water dispenser and ice maker. However, then we were faced with the prospect of cabinet depth or something that was going to stick out about four inches. UGH! If there was no price difference, there wouldn't have been an issue but not only did the cabinet-depth offer fewer raw storage space it was also more expensive! After discussing it, we decided on storage space versus aesthetics since it wasn't going to look bad.
Going into the weekend, we decided we wanted good capacity, top-loading washers with a matching dryer. We looked at those options and wrote off the high-efficiency top-loaders and front-loading units. That was, until we met up with some friends Sunday afternoon who recently purchased some front-loading units. To make a long story short, they told us along with using less water and overall energy, you can do more laundry in less time. That lead us to our next debate. Still not sure the way we are going to go, so we are looking for input.
The only question remaining is when do we purchase. To get a 12-months no interest/no payments deal we would have to open up a new charge account we would have to open up a new trade line. But we don't want to do anything to screw up the mortgage. So, I'll be calling the mortgage guy today...
Friday, March 17, 2006
Well...this wasn't exactly a pleasant experience for Ken. I knew I was no longer 34 waist, but we grabbed a bunch of Levi's in a size 36. Man were those tight. While I could get into them, they looked tight - and not necessarily in a good way. Luckily I was able to save my ego and bought a bunch of the Kohl's store brand jeans in a size 36 that fit just fine. It just underscores the point that I need to loose a few pounds again. Ugh.
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
So I'm making it tonight for Amy and Dave. The biggest difference is that we had a ton of ground turkey in the freezer, so I'm using that instead of ground beef.
I'll let you all know how it turns out.
Thursday, March 09, 2006
The second exciting detail is that we have our Pre-Closing Orientation (walk-through) and Title Appointment. I love how builders spin things now. It's no longer a walk-through, because you find problems during a walk-through. Calling it an orientation is a more positive spin, and if you happen to find issues to correct, so be it. That date in April 20th. We'll be able to pick up our keys on April 25th.
The house is evolving so rapidly. Two months ago, it was just some trenches and maybe forms for the foundation. Today, it's a full-blown structure with windows, doors and closets. Very, very impressive. It's getting closer, and we are getting excited!
On a completely unrelated note, every morning I am reminded why I love satellite radio. Amy's alarm is set to a specific radio station with a morning team I can't stand. This morning was no different. In an effort to address topics of the day, they opted for a call-in segment. That's when you realize how many uneducated people are out there in this town. Amazing.
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
The air travel was long. There is no way to sugar-coat a 15-18 hour flight or 10-14 hours worth of layovers.
Next time, I promise I'll take a camera and will take some photos. I may even go into Singapore to help pass some of the time.
One of my worries heading out was that I was going to be out of the country when offers were made on my house. Luckily, they didn't come in until the end of the trip. I'm crossing my fingers, but I think we may finalize one of them today. Very exciting.
The new house is progressing nicely. The outside is stucco-ed and they have delivered our doors. It's not going to be long now.
Anyway, I'll do a more organized post in a day or two.
Friday, February 24, 2006
It's 40 hours of travel and the transit hotel at the Singapore airport was fully booked. I'm hoping they have a cancellation or something for when I get there. I would just like to lie down for a little bit once I get off an 18 hour flight and while I kill 14 hours in an airport. Also, the client visit isn't exactly going to be 100 percent pleasant as we didn't have a particularly good quarter.
On the other hand, I am kind of excited. I have a defined purpose for this trip and I will get to meet a lot of people that I talk on the phone with. That will be cool. Plus, Chris is going to try and upgrade me on the way back. Woo hoo!
I think my mother is going to be a little emotional today. My sister and her husband are on a 1:30-ish flight back to Albany and I am leaving around 4. It was good to see them while they were here. I am dog tired now - I'm not used to going out every night for four or five nights.
Anyway, I'll try and post updates will I'm in India. It should be interesting, if nothing else.
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
The point is, it was a cool experience and I think I'll be going back.
In other news, my sister and her husband are in town this week. I haven't seen her since July and it's good to see them. I just wished that had taken an earlier flight or theirs got in on time. Amy and I did not need to be driving to the airport at 2 a.m. Monday morning. Oh yeah, and I leave for India on Friday afternoon.
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
Today was great too. Amy and I had our frame orientation today. The construction superintendent took us through the house and pointed out all of the frame features of the house. He then pointed out all the outlets, wiring and plumbing, along with the HVAC. It was very educational and Amy and I got to ask a ton of questions. I can't believe how fast this is going. It was just barely two months ago that it was still just a dirt lot. Now there is a house on it. I'm still a little in awe.
I realize this is a bit smaltzy for some of you out there in blog-land. It makes me a little sick too, but I can't believe how happy I am these days. I wouldn't trade it for the world. Besides, I had to suffer through it with some of you out there, so now it's your turn.
Saturday, February 11, 2006
Then some funny things happened. Amy called her tax person at 8:45 to confirm her 11 a.m. appointment. Turns out it's at 9. Oops. Then I called Dustin to confirm our appointment. He wanted to reschedule it for 2 p.m., but since I'm busy it's now pushed off until tomorrow on this side of town. Yay!
So now, I'm sitting here having mostly finished my taxes still sitting in my boxers (I know - an image you were all looking for), reading blogs and surfing the internet. Our transportation problems are solved and now we can take most of the day at a relatively relaxed place. Plus, we are going to Fado for dinner. What a great Saturday. Funny how it all happens to come together.
Tuesday, February 07, 2006
The building superintendent called this afternoon and want to set up a frame orientation. While our salesperson took the time on Saturday to walk us through and explain some stuff, I think this is a really good step. It's just one of those things that are good to know. I'm glad our builder is as thorough and customer friendly as they are.
Friday, February 03, 2006
The one wacky thing when watching HD programs is the commericals. Since I'm assuming they aren't in HD, they shrink back to the middle of the screen. Too funny.
PS. We watched the Super Bowl in HD. That was FREAKING FANTASTIC. The surround sound was hooked up by then, so we had the whole Home Theater thing going on. It was pretty cool. Plus, it was a good game. While the Steelers pulled away at the end, it was competitive through at least three full quarters. All in all, one of the best matchups in a while.
Wednesday, February 01, 2006
I actually belong to both (nooo....not the places in the movie). I have memberships to both 24HourFitness and Las Vegas Athletic Club (LVAC). Trust me - there are reasons which are perfectly valid, at least to me.
24Hour is a lot like Average Joe's - basically a neighborhood gym and some have nice bells and whistles like pools and basketball courts. LVAC is more like GloboGym. This is a little surprising, since while LVAC makes you sign a contract, it's actually cheaper to belong to LVAC on a monthly basis. I generally prefer going to LVAC. It's cleaner, and there is enough equipment that I don't end up standing around waiting to do an exercise.
I was finally able to check out the new LVAC on Rainbow and Lake Mead. Holy crap that place is huge! It makes the club in Green Valley look tiny. I'll admit that I was even intimidated walking in there. I was definitely uncomfortable, but because of the size, while the place was definitely busy, it didn't feel like it.
Anyway, I'm back to working out semi-regularly. I'd like to get to the point where I'm going 4-5 days a week again, with at least one day taking a spin class. That's where I'd like to maintain once I get back from India.
Monday, January 30, 2006
First, I maintain that while the United States states that we want democracy and self-determination everywhere, it is generally appended with "as long as our interests are served." This is especially true in emerging economies and the Middle East. Recent elections in Egypt, the Palestinian territories and Bolivia should be a reminder of this. Don't get me wrong - I am for movements towards freedom and democracy. I applaud it. Just don't be surprised if they don't approve of your policies and call you on it.
Second, my company is in the process of bidding on a very large potential client. While everyone wants their name and the additional revenue, they don't care if you make money at it. Not exactly a win-win.
Monday, January 23, 2006
Turns out that the development she is selling is offering three story houses. They ranged from 1450 to 1700 square feet with two car garages. The houses also offer a small backyard. They can fit 15 houses on an acre. While I'm sure they look very nice but it struck me how Amy and I made the right decision to buy our house now. New construction single story houses with any sort of land are going to become a thing of the past in any sort of affordable price range. The lady from Richmond American said it's the only way in this town to keep the base price under $300K. Casey told us that even Pulte is going to build three story houses in the not so distant future.
As a quick tangent though, who said that $300K is really affordable? A young couple just starting out these days could barely afford that.
Needless to say, I feel this bodes well for Amy and I. As the price of land out here continues to increase with each BLM auction, single story houses in gated communities with pools will be in high demand. Brian wasn't wrong.
In separate news, while I am slightly sad that The West Wing is being canceled after this season, I think it's time. I mean the show wouldn't be the same without, Josh, Donna, Will Bailey and CJ. It's run its course and now it's time to step aside. Now if only we could get the "franchise" shows off TV - I like Law and Order and CSI, I think there are far too many of them on TV. Just my 2 cent.
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
I do like my primary care doctor. Over the last few years, we've built up a relationship and he's pretty cool. I was expecting a lecture since I've gained some weight and haven't been real religious with my blood pressure or cholesterol meds. He just told me to get back on them and left it at that. I told him I'll eat better and exercise more, like I did when I lost all the weight, and he was OK with that. They took some blood to check liver and kidney function and off I went.
The dermatologist wasn't too bad. They were able to squeeze me in so I didn't have to reschedule (again), and got a couple of prescriptions to take care of some very mild skin issues I have.
Where I wasn't so bright was in getting three prescriptions filled yesterday. At least one could have waited (and that ended up being the most expensive), but at least it's done. I'm back on my daily meds, so that will be good. Now all I have to do is get back on a decent meal plan and start going to the gym on a regular basis.
Monday, January 16, 2006
One area that is completely off limits for them is the master bedroom closet. We tried keeping the master bath off limits, but they would set up camp outside there just waiting for their opportunity. Friday night, Midge just stared at the door and hissed for no apparent reason. Very funny.
The cats are generally behaving themselves and getting used to their new surroundings. I'm feeling more and more at home at the Durango house...
Thursday, January 12, 2006
- Met with the pool guy who was able to do a 3-D rendering of our pool in our backyard. That was cool as hell. Basically convinced us that the pool won't look stupid and we are moving ahead with it!
- WE HAVE A CONCRETE SLAB!!!!!!!!!!! Yesterday, there were the post-tension bars, but now we have a concrete slab except in the garage, but that's OK.
- Brian came by, and I signed all the docs to have my house listed as of Saturday. Sarah is cleaning the house now, and I have a few small things to take care of. I'll admit I'm a little nervous.
- The cats get moved tonight. I feel bad. They are going to freak. But it will be good. Besides, they'll have new places to explore.
- Amy's birthday is tomorrow. I think I'm as excited as she is.
That's all for now. Till next time...
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
The house is coming along nicely. As of Sunday, the plumbing and electrical box were installed and the lot looks like they are ready to pour the foundation. We were able to have Pulte refund us our lot premium and a little more because our yard is going to by shaped a little bit differently than everyone elses. I'm happy with what we got, and now we can move on.
Amy and I are meeting with the Pool Guy today. We really like him. He is going to show us a 3-D rendering of the pool as it's designed. That'll be cool. I need to call the mortgage person about including this, but that's a small matter.
Friday is Amy's birthday. Big plans for the weekend. I'm sure you'll get recaps here or on Overthinking either Saturday or Sunday.
That's all for now. Headed to Durango house to finish off my day.
Saturday, January 07, 2006
- I don't know why the news media keeps reporting the crazy talk that comes out of Pat Robertson. I think because it guarantees them at least three or four stories and he gets to enjoy a news cycle. The process is always the same. 1. He says something nutty 2. People express outrage 3. He re-states his statement with a little bit of an apology and 4. Things calm down a little and he goes back into obscurity
- Marcus Vick is a dumba$$. Either that or extraordinarily bright. I'm not sure which. Knowing he was on probation from Virginia Tech, he went out and got himself cited for driving with a revoked license and took a cheap shot during the Gator Bowl. Got himself kicked out of school and is now contemplating going to the NFL. I know he's Michael Vick's little bro and all, but still. At any rate, he'll make more money than I do.
- Amy's just awesome
- I finally went and got my photos taken for the visa. I'll print out the application and FedEx it to corporate on Monday
- Let's go Sabres!
- I should take my Dad to a Wranglers game. I think he'd enjoy it.
- Satellite Radio and DVR are just plain cool products. I bitched about both of them when they first came out, but now I can't imagine life without them.
OK. I think it's out of my system now. Have a great weekend!
Wednesday, January 04, 2006
- I am getting more and more annoyed with the news media. I think journalists have a very important job. A free press in necessary in a free society. This being said, I think it is safe to say that we are seeing more and more "tabloid journalism" than actual journalism these days. I mean come on - talking to the families of the West Virginia miners after they learned of the "miscommunication?"
- How can the Bush Administration keep defending their domestic spying program? As citizens, we would expect the Bill of Rights to be honored and to not follow the acceptable protocols is very disturbing to me.
- The Bills fired President and GM Tom Donahoe. Thank god. We haven't been in the playoffs since 1999 - when Doug Flutie played for the Bills. The infamous "Music City Miracle."
- My job is getting to me a little bit. Our infrastructure was built for a company that isn't as big as we are now, and we are going through those growing pains. We'll get through them, but the late-night conference calls are getting old.
- I really need to apply for my Indian Visa. I've known about this for way too long not to have it.
- Getting ready to put my house on the market. It's a little freaky. I have a lot to do.
- We are moving ahead with wedding plans. Next up - interviewing officiants. For more info, check out For Better or Worse
That's all for now. Have a nice day!
Monday, January 02, 2006
They have made it through their first holiday season away from Buffalo. It was a little rough on them. While they were able to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas with me, they missed out on seeing my sister for Thanksgiving and I know they miss my aunt and uncle. However, they do really like the weather out here. My Mom has taken great pleasure in telling her friends and family back east about the milder weather we are experiencing.
I honestly think this is the most time that they have spent together in a very long time. They are around each other nearly 24x7. I think they are both going a little stir crazy. Mom needs to have her gall bladder out, but after that she's going to find herself a job and that should help. I tell them they should get involved in church and the like so they at least start meeting other people. They've already been to a couple of HOA meetings, so they are getting to know their neighbors.
Minx has survived the trip, the move and the unpacking. Mom and Dad originally want to name her Trouble, but switched to Minx. However, they should have stuck with that first name. She is into nearly everything. Mind you, she's still basically a kitten, so she's curious. One of her favorite resting spots is on top of the kitchen cabinets. That's quite the sight to see. Minx rarely lets Mom read the paper in peace. We were showing them our pool plans yesterday and Minx decided that is where she wanted to rest. Pretty funny actually.
Both of them have welcomed Amy into our family, and Mom and Leni are developing quite the relationship. Needless to say, I think Mom and Dad just might make it after all...