Friday, January 31, 2003

And I Can Say "I Knew Her When.."

I saw this article about a girl from my high school who up for an award. She used to have her piano lesson right before mine. When I met her, I was 14 years old. That means she was either 4 or 5 years old, and damn good on the piano. My piano teacher, Mrs. Blind, always said Pheobe had a lot of talent. She was right!

Thursday, January 30, 2003

Are You Afraid Of The Dark? Telling ghost stories
that scare the crap out of me is your goal in
life. Please stop, the clowns'll eat me...

What's Your 90's Nickelodeon Show?
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A New Brewery in Chautauqua County

The Democrat & Chronicle got the jumpstart on a story that's going out (with a different twist) next week here in this county. The story is about Southern Tier Brewing Company. My dad told me about it and mentioned he was disappointed that there would be no brewpub located at the brewery. Ah well Dad, what can you do? Hopefully buy this new beer at Wegmans soon!

Wednesday, January 29, 2003


Things are crazy at work right now and home so updates will be sporadic.. will try to get something new here by the weekend.

Monday, January 27, 2003

Super Bowl Ads

I think James Lileks got it right in today's Bleat. Here's his review of the ads:

Bud Light: one commercial featured a fellow who attempts to chat up some beach bunnies by feigning a conversation with a sea shell; a crab leg deploys from the shell’s pink aperture and clamps on to his lip. This is a very successful ad, if you’re aiming at that portion of the beer-drinking demographic who secretly fear vaginas hide spiny crustacean appendages, but it left me cold. Another Bud Light ad featured a couple out on a date; the fellow had three arms. She asked why. He said it made it easier to order, pour, and consume Bud Light. Adding an extra arm so you can drink Bud Light is like having a doctor punch another mouth in your face so you can kiss your sister.

Most inadvertent bad comparison: Cadillac. We see a man waiting for a train in the subway; he’s sitting beneath a big ad for a lovely old Caddy, one of those battleship models that looked like someone threw a stiff sheet over Kate Smith’s corpse. It’s shot in sepia tones, which tells you it’s THE PAST. To me it looks like they hired Andres Serrano as director of cinematography. As the train accelerates, time accelerates as well, and the passenger glimpses the future of Cadillac, which sucks. Led Zep’s “Rock and Roll” introduces us to the next model of Caddy, which looks like an Aztek that had an elephant dropped on it.

Best ad: Terry Tate, Office Linebacker. One simple idea: huge human meat-anvil is hurled at frail cubicle dweebs, and after he knocks them down he berates them. Hilarious, utterly unconnected to the product, but when it was done I could hear the word REEBOK throbbing in my brain in great loud red letters. a semi truck with no driver cheerfully careens through fields and towns. Nicely shot and well-edited. But it reminds you of the year when every other ad was for an internet-bubble company. One has survived, and it’s the site aimed at the unemployed. There’s the latter nineties, in a nutshell.

mLife. Still don’t know what the hell it is, one year into the campaign. Not a good sign. One ad suggests that mLife would have saved Gilligan & crew, but it’s a few years too late. We’re in a post post-Gilligan age now. The other ad required that the viewer be familiar with “Antiques Roadshow,” and poked fun at people who still plugged their phone into the wall instead of relying on cellphones. Yes, my wallphone regularly fails because the batteries are dry, or because the connection was inexplicably dropped, or because our house suddenly moved into an area without coverage. Once again: no idea what mLife is, except that it seems to involve small, portable phones. Perhaps they think we’ll sign on out of curiosity and pay more money every month, hoping for the secret of mLife to be revealed. Great: the telephonic equivalent of Scientology.

Most pretentious: Levis. In a curiously unpopulated world that nevertheless has sufficient industrial infrastructure to illuminate the entire city, two Gen YZs walk down an empty street at midnight in their jeans while a herd of bison thunder towards them. The bison, recognizing through animal intuition the power of stiff blue-hued fabric, do not mow them over, gore the corpses and toss their bloody bodies in the air. Pity.

Pepsi. Warning, Osbornekenotonics: contains Osbournes. Ozzy has had eight lives, each of which lasted 15 minutes. The timer is about to ding on #9. And please: someone feed his sullen, talentless brood to a trash compactor; I’m sick of the bludy lot a’ them.

Michelob Ultra - a female boxer (is there any other kind?) is shown working over a punching bag in what looks like some elegant Gilded Age ballroom. It looks like the same room used in a Lenny Kravitz video. And a Stones video, if I remember correctly. In any case, I gather this is a beer for people who work out in monochromatic, underlit environments. Noted.

Sunday, January 26, 2003

You Know You're From Rochester When...

This list is complied from random web sites...

The worst four-letter word you could say is "Fuji".

It's a disgrace to buy Fuji products.

The name "Greater Rochester International Airport" is bigger than the airport itself.

You know that a "Can of Worms" is not something that you take fishing.

It can be 70 degrees one day, below freezing the next, and you think nothing of it.

Your low-fat diet is never low enough to exclude an Abbott's custard.

You order a white hot and a pop, and the counterman knows what you're talking about.

You define summer as three months of bad sledding.

Wegmans is somewhere to go on a Friday night, for entertainment.

You can go to any mall on Saturday and see at least 5 people you either work with, went to school with or dated.

Halloween is snowed out with great regularity

You can travel from Egypt to Greece in about a half-hour by car.

You can't swim at the beach.

The thought of eating a "garbage plate" makes your mouth water.

Your idea of a seven-course meal is a six pack of Genny and a bucket of Buffalo wings.

You bake with soda and drink pop.

You define candy on a stick as sucker and a hapless, hopeless individual as a moron.

From May to October there is a festival every weekend celebrating a different fruit, vegetable, or agricultural product, but absolutely nothing happening the remainder of the year.

You can accurately judge people as to their social status by determining which Wegmans store they shop at.

18+ inches of snow falls overnight, but you never thought of NOT going to work.

You can compare Nick Tahoe's garbage plate to at least 3 other knock-offs in competing restaurants.

Your year has two seasons: Winter and Construction.

Half the change in your pocket is Canadian, eh.

Toronto is about 70 miles away, but it takes about three hours to get there.

In a city where it snows at least 90 inches a year, they build a new sports stadium with no roof on it.

You and the cat are peacefully napping in front of the TV set, with the volume at a comfortable level, and a Gabriele Ford commercial comes on at twice the decibel level, causing you to bolt upright and the cat to leave gouge marks in your lap.

You know who Vinnie and Angelo are.

Any new construction project downtown that comprises over ten stories is worthy of a detailed front-page account in the newspaper

A building with a statue of a guy with wings on the top of it is not unusual to you

Saturday, January 25, 2003

Sushi Over Here

This is a momentous occasion here in Jamestown. We have a sushi bar. After complaining for the past three years, it has finally happened. I should qualify this by adding that the sushi bar is housed within the best Chinese restaurant in the county. That's not saying much, but it's still the best. I'm looking forward to trying their extensive menu. Plus, they deliver. Life just might get better here. Now all we need is a Target, Krispy Kreme, a good coffee shop that's open until midnight (in the style of Cibon), a Barnes & Noble, a Perkin's, a really good record store (ala Record Archive and Lakeshore Record Exchange), Nick Tahoe's, and a few more places to shop and I'll be happy happy happy forever. I can dream, can't I? Maybe I just need to move back to Rochester.

Friday, January 24, 2003

New Orleans Update

Well, I suppose it's time I got around to telling you all about our glorious trip down South.

Friday: We left Buffalo in 13 degree weather and arrived in New Orleans in 40 degree weather. A huge improvement already. After checking into our hotel, we proceeded down Canal Street to go to the Audubon Aquarium. On our way, we were accosted by a man (had a valid permit) and convinced to do a "survey" of a new hotel in the area. In turned out to be a timeshare presentation, but we ended up with free tickets to the Aquarium and a coupon book out of the deal. The Aquarium is super cool. I especially loved the otters, Buck and Emma. Matt ended up buying a little beany otter for me later on. After getting our fill of sea creatures, we headed over to the IMAX theatre to catch a 3D film there. It was ok (The Haunted Castle). It's the first museum IMAX I've been in where you can buy popcorn, soda, beer, etc. and eat it in the theatre. Guess I'm just used to the Smithsonian set up. After the film, we walked in the brisk, evening air along the Mississippi River. I had made dinner reservations at the Crescent City Brewhouse for 8pm, and we still had almost an hour to kill. We took that time to walk along Decatur and see where some of the sites were. I was happy to see that Cafe DuMonde was close by. We ate dinner (I had filet mignon, Matt had spareribs that were excellent) and tried some of the microbrews. I wasn't overly impressed with any of the beer selections, so I had Pepsi instead. I guess I'll always love Rohrbachs. After dinner I made Matt walk around some more and we eventually ended up at Cafe DuMonde where I consumed an order of beignets and cafe au lait. We would go back Saturday night for this treat as well.

Saturday: We started out by heading on over to the French Market. I bought some jewelry there since they had great selections. The prices were good in my opinion as well. I still wish I had bought some hot sauce there along with chickory coffee or beignet mix. That's what online shopping is for I guess! This was our first walking tour day. We basically took three tours from Haunted History Tours since they had been recommended by a few sites. Saturday was the cemetery tour of St. Louis Cemetery #1. Our guide, Midge, was great. He even has a plot bought in the cemetery for the future. The other cool thing about the tour (since it was in the French Quarter area) was that I could bring along a hurricane from Pat O'Briens. It was pretty novel to me that you could have an open container in the middle of the street during the day, or at all! Plus, I wanted a hurricane. After the tour, Matt and I went back and crashed for an hour or two before dinner. Here's where the story gets interesting (I think at least). Remember the stuffed animal version of Emma the Otter? Well, Matt had told me her lost her or accidentally left her somewhere at least twice by this time (he reneged after the first time he said he lost her). I believed him. So while we were getting ready to go to dinner, Matt comes out of the bathroom saying, "You'll never guess what I found!" I looked and saw Emma and responded, "Oh.. ok. So you didn't lose her." I kept giving him this "And your point is" look until he opened the flippers on the otter, and there was the ring. He didn't get a chance to really ask the question since I had tackled him in a hug, falling over onto the bed. He gasped out, "Does this mean yes?" It was all good at that point. We then walked from the west end of the French Quarter to the East End to eat at Marisol. I had a Gulf Shrimp dish and Matt ate a pork chop on top of cannelloni filled with duck liver (I think that's right). We also had minestrone soup that had basil pesto in it. Very yummy. After dinner we headed up Frenchmen Street to find some good live music. We ended up at The Spotted Cat which reminded me of the bar-version of what Java Joe's in Rochester, NY used to be like in the early 1990's. It's a small place with lots of locals, no cover, cool glasses for drinks, and very good music. We stayed to listen to two groups and decided we were beat and had to head back. I sidetracked Matt with our second stop at Cafe DuMonde, where we ended up talking to a family at a table next to us for a half hour. Good times.

Sunday: I intentionally did not set the alarm. I know this sounds nuts to most people that I even set an alarm on vacation, but I'm anal like that. We eventually got up and made plans to head over to the Garden District to take our second walking tour (of said District). We ate lunch at a forgettable place. I had grilled cheese that was way too salty. Bleh. The tour was very cool. It included Anne Rice, Trent Reznor, and several historical houses. Eventually I'll finish my roll of film and give you all a link to the pictures. Of course I said that about Orlando too, didn't I? Hmm. After we finished the tour, we got back on the St. Charles Street Car and rode back into town. We went back and rested again and then made our way over to Mothers Restaurant. I had jambalaya and Matt had a po'boy. It vaguely reminded me of Nick Tahoe's and the Soup Nazi in some ways. You have to experience it to understand. My jambalaya was very tasty and plentiful. We then took off back into the French Quarter to meet up for our third, and last, walking tour which was the Ghost Tour. That wasn't as long (in terms of stories) as we hoped, but we got to see more of the Quarter. At the end of the evening, we went to Krispy Kremes since the hot doughnut sign was on, and you know I'm not going to pass that up!

Monday: Was all flying and traveling. I got to have sushi while on layover at JFK. That was a happy moment. A good trip all in all. Plus, Matt pulled a nice surprise on me by proposing (although I did have a feeling...).

Thursday, January 23, 2003

I Lose My Pink Card For Certain Now

Ok. Since Heidi was giving me the big hint to share my news, here it is. This past Saturday, while we were in New Orleans, Matt asked me to marry him (ring and all). I said yes of course. The date has not really been set, but we're projecting sometime in Summer 2004. Good news for me, bad news for my adoring fans who were all hoping I'd see the light and give them a chance. Well, I assume there has to be at least one adoring fan. No? Ah well.

Thursday, January 16, 2003

Au Revoir

I just thought of a funny thing. This weekend (leaving today for Buffalo), Matt and I are off to New Orleans for a long weekend. For you history-types, the whole Creole thing happened because England/Canada kicked the Acadians out of Nova Scotia. This summer, I'm headed to Nova Scotia. What a funny coincidence!

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

New Harry Potter in June!

The Leaky Cauldron has the story on the release of the fifth Harry Potter book. Go there to read two small paragraphs from the book. Just think, six months from now I'll be engrossed in a children's book that's even longer than the last Harry Potter book and about the same length (if not longer) than Infinite Jest (which I still have yet to get beyond page 50).

Tuesday, January 14, 2003

Must.. Resist.. Urge.. To.. Scream..

You know how you can work on something for four days and when it's done, other people don't think it's any good? I'm going nuts here. I've clarified points of concern or questions and it's still not good enough. I'm about to pull my hair out on this press release. Then someone, who hadn't really reviewed it, suggested that we not do the release at all. That aggravated me even more since I believe there is a good story and I don't want to have just spent the last four days bothering staff for information to have it turn out for naught. Radio news was so much simpler (writing that is). I'm about ready to hunt for job openings at this point!

Monday, January 13, 2003

What's Your Deepest Secret?

what's YOUR deepest secret?

brought to you by Quizilla

That's funny seeing as how just about everyone I know used to joke about how many points you'd get for hitting people with your car. You got the maximum points if you hit a quadriplegic baby. It was all in jest of course, but mildly entertaining. Especially when my mom got into it a couple times.

Grab Y'self a Pint and Drown In Ye Sorrows

Donn Esmonde once again has commentary that hits it on the nose for Buffalo. Of course it made me want to settle in for a liquid lunch, sing a few dirges, and wallow in the general malaise of the whole situation. Truthfully, the whole "badness" going on or depression with Buffalo is starting to be like battle scars. You get to a point where you can walk around proudly thumping your chest, saying you've survived all of this havoc and will continue to survive no matter what the stakes. It's the same down here in Chautauqua. It was so miserable down here for so long that people don't know how to react to positive change. Most get suspicious and question if it will do any good. Maybe we'll figure out our big rallying cry someday.

Sunday, January 12, 2003

Where's That Key??

I was almost frantic after I couldn't find the wee, little key that opens the "lock" on this small cedar box of mine. Inside the box is what I call "phase one" of my dating history. Basically, notes and a few pictures of the first three guys I dated. I'm a bit of a pack rat and had gone through a different box full of letters and notes from friends/family (from 1988 through the college years). I had to audibly laugh at some of the things my friends said. Mostly inside jokes like my poor friend Sean not getting some girl told him he needed a haircut and "a different part." He knew it was from the movie, Singles, but didn't understand why getting a haircut would give him a different part. See the movie and pay attention to the Janet and Dr. Jamison scenes and it will all make sense. Lots of laughs and a few "Jesus Christ we were effed up!" when reading some letters from a penpal of mine. Ahh.. those sweet teen years. How glad I am that I can look back fondly while occasionally remembering why I hated them at the same time. After much searching, some attempted picking of the lock, and even more searching I found the key. Life is good.

Friday, January 10, 2003

Sex or No Sex

eMpTy-V actually had a decent show (Everybody's Doing It) on abstinence vs. well.. non-abstinence. Made me laugh and a little infuriated at times. See, the whole Not Me, Not Now program was started in my home county of Monroe, New York (read about research results of some survey done there). Anyway, I was fortunate to avoid that whole abstinence push. I suppose. I still think one of the more amusing parts of high school was finding out the dental dam could be used by people who weren't going in for a root canal. It didn't help that the guy who came to our health class kept stretching it out while explaining what it could be used for. My friend, Julie, made the wry observation that the plastic wrap around Fruit Roll-Ups was similar to dental dams and we had lots of fun laughing over that one. Anyway..

I think teaching just abstinence is a crock. It's ok to present it as an option. Lord knows I probably would have waited longer to become sexually active (that sounds so damn technical) and in the end sort of became a "born again virgin" by virtue of the fact that I didn't have sex for 2 years after I stopped seeing the first guy I slept with. After that, it was all downhill. Kidding! But it took that long to just be comfortable enough with myself (for various reasons I won't get into here) to be that intimate with another person. It took even longer to ultimately be comfortable with myself. You could say age and knowledge do matter.

Snow, Snow, Snow

We're getting hammered with snow across the county. We should have at least 2 feet of new snow in parts of the county by the end the weekend. We always laugh that if the weather forecasters say it's snowing in Chautauqua County, that they probably mean Mayville. Inevitably, it's always snowing here. That's almost no exaggeration. On the positive front, snowmobile trails across the county will be re-opened this week. Not that I snowmobile, but the sport has a $15 million impact on the county and an insurance glitch of a kind had shut down 70% of our trails these past two weeks. Thankfully, that's all worked out now across New York state.

Thursday, January 09, 2003

Hell In a Handbasket

I sometimes wonder just what is happening to my hometown. I just saw an article about a guy getting shot not too far from where my parents live, and just a few streets away from my friend, Anne.

Meyers-Briggs for Blogs?

My Bloginality is ISTJ!!!

Commotion at Timmy's

A couple weekends ago, Matt and I had dinner with Lynda at Red Lobster. After stuffing ourselves there, we headed on over to Tim Horton's for coffee and dessert. Tim's dining room closes at 10pm, but we made it just in time to snag a seat. While we were sipping our coffee, a group of early-twenties kids came in. The one guy kept insisting that the cashier gave him the incorrect change (guy gave him a $20 but didn't get back enough change). The cashier told him he could leave his name and number and someone would get back to him, that he couldn't open the register and just give him the money. This lil' punk kept at it, getting louder, his cronies getting into to. This whole time, Matt, Lynda and I are just sitting there, looking at each other with some mirth. We all knew the employee was in the right. I think we all resisted the urge to turn around and tell the kids to knock it off and to just leave their name and number if it was that important. Eventually, one of the employees called Jamestown Police, who responded. The officers nodded at us in recognition, escorted the gang out, searched their car, and then let them go. We had window seats and saw it all happen. Matt's guess is that the kids ran out of beer money and were trying to con some out of Tim's. He checked up a few days later with the manager that was on duty that night and found out the cash register wasn't over or short that night. So now you know what we consider excitement around here!

Wednesday, January 08, 2003

Let the Good Times Roll...

Besides being a line from a pretty good song by The Cars, it's also the catch phrase du jour down in a little city called New Orleans. Matt and I are headed there next weekend and have finally started researching places we would like to go while in town. Yahoo! actually has a good overview along with some good suggestions from this site. I'm also hoping we'll hear from Matt this week since he's been there a few times. In exchange, we're offering to pick up some Mardi Gras items for whenever his bash will be this year. So for those thinking I need a vacation, it's coming up soon!

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

The Quick Run Down of 2002

Sometimes you realize you're just not going to be able to do the overblown version of 2002. So here's a brief run-down Mayfly-style, but longer:

Near Disaster at Work. Change in Supervisors Makes Me Hopeful. Loss of Friend. Cool Trip to Washington DC. Actual loss of an aunt and cousin. Working towards a burnout. Numerous trips to Ohio to see friends and Gravity Games. Week in Rochester to run a garage sale. Most awesome trip to Orlando. Elections. Trip to Columbus to see friends. Really burned out. Depressing Holidays. Better outlook for 2003?

Monday, January 06, 2003

Friday, January 03, 2003

On the Upswing

Today is going pretty well. Despite snow, impending deadlines on multiple projects, and other craziness.. I'm doing fine. Maybe denial has truly set in. Well, I'll get around sometime today, tomorrow, or next few days re-capping 2002 Cindy-style and making sangria out of lemons. Believe me, sangria is much more interesting than lemonade. There are some nice bright spots in there and there are some pretty cool things coming up in 2003 (mucho traveling!).

Wednesday, January 01, 2003

Hormones or Otherwise

I feel I must apologize for the prolonged whining, carrying-on's lately. I have been pretty moody and am still trying to figure out how to break out of it. Also, it's driving Matt nuts since he can't figure out what's wrong with me. Part of me blames unhappiness with work, but Matt says I'm just trying to pin my mood on something tangible. Who knows? Although I'm not sure if my little fantasy of getting laid off is just a result of being lazy, or truly dissatisfied with work. Then of course I feel guilty. I should be very glad to have a job. And if I'm not happy with it, then I should get to figuring out how to change the environment so I am happy. See what I mean about whining? So when my mind isn't going a million miles an hour freaking out about various projects looming ahead, I am trying to find some kind of balance. F*ck. I just remembered something else coming up. Ah well. I'll catch you on the flipside.

Um.. Happy New Year?

Originally, Matt and I were just going to stay home and continue watching An Evening With Kevin Smith to bring in the New Year. We ended up leaving at 11pm to go see his brother's band play and see his family, who had all turned out to see Dave play as well. It was ok. I was just so tired. When I got home from work at 4:30-ish yesterday, I lay down on the couch and fell asleep for an hour and a half. Matt was a little ticked because he had gotten the fixings for steak fajitas. That's ok, we can have that today. I've just been so tired lately. Add that on top of the other stuff, and I'm no happy fun ball. After we saw the ball drop last night, Matt said to me later, "Happy New Year?" I answered, "No, not really."

Away, Away

We're on a mini-vaca in an area where they're experiencing forest fires (thanks asshole arsonist). It's an area that makes Clift...