Monday, February 28, 2005

Friends with Great Expectations

While perusing some articles on the D&C site, I stumbled across a story about the performance of Great Expectations by the Blackfriars Theatre.

What was notable for me was one of the pictures was of a long-time friend:

Ben performing as "Pip" in a scene from "Great Expectations" Posted by Hello

Hooray for friends with talent!

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Shoop! Shoop! Di-li-li-li-li-li

Anyone who went to an Rochester Amerks game in the 1980s will remember "Freeze Frame" by the J. Geils Band as one of the theme songs for the team. The last time I heard it at an Amerk's game was when they played at HSBC Arena in Buffalo this past November. It was their "opener" song as the players skated onto the ice. A fuzzy memory seems to suggest that it might have been the song played when they scored a goal in the past. While the song has the essence of cheddar, it still makes me grin to remember going to games with my dad as a kid and him singing along, but urging the team on by saying "Shoot! Shoot! Di-li-li-li-li-li!"

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Our House.. In The Middle of the Street

My skills in deferred gratification have become a little lax lately when it comes to issues like buying a house. I'll pass by a house for sale and have to immediately look it up online. Then I drool over the online listing and obsessively drive by the house when out on errands. Matt and I are at a point right now where we may have the 10% down-payment needed on one particular 2-story, 5 bedroom, 1 1/2 bath, corner lot house. The issue is that we've never seen the house from the inside. For all we know, the furnace is ancient (we suspect old-style radiator heat from pictures), the roof leaks, the water tank is full of sediment, the foundation is shaky, and the kitchen is leftover from the 1930s. I guess the trick is, suspect the worst and maybe we'll be pleasantly surprised.

Our House.. In The Middle of the Street

My skills in deferred gratification have become a little lax lately when it comes to issues like buying a house. I'll pass by a house for sale and have to immediately look it up online. Then I drool over the online listing and obsessively drive by the house when out on errands. Matt and I are at a point right now where we may have the 10% down-payment needed on one particular 2-story, 5 bedroom, 1 1/2 bath, corner lot house. The issue is that we've never seen the house from the inside. For all we know, the furnace is ancient (we suspect old-style radiator heat from pictures), the roof leaks, the water tank is full of sediment, the foundation is shaky, and the kitchen is leftover from the 1930s. I guess the trick is, suspect the worst and maybe we'll be pleasantly surprised.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

The Ministry of Coffee

When I'm running ahead of schedule in the morning, I like to stop by Tim Horton's for coffee before work. One sunny morning, a few weeks ago, was one of those days, so I pulled up to the speaker at the drive-thru, ordered a small coffee with two creams, and drove up to the window.

As I was doing the money exchange bit, I heard the lyrics "So there was only one thing that I could do was ding a ding dang my dang a long ling long.." sound off from my iPod, following by the crashing of industrial guitars. It startled the guy handing me my coffee, who started eyeing me suspiciously. After all, a woman dressed in a skirt and suit jacket couldn't possibly be listening to Ministry... could she? I smiled brightly at the employee, took my coffee, and drove away. It still gives me a chuckle to think about it now.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Anti-Giambra T-shirt

There's a hell of a firestorm going on up in Erie County, NY in regards to the county's budget situation. People have even begun expressing their sentiments through t-shirts. The word "recall" is getting a lot more play these days.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Never Say Hiatus

I never like to say that I might be posting less, or am thinking of taking a temporary leave of absence from my blog, because inevitably I find time to make a burst of posts. I will say that work has become crazy with an upcoming program audit, so my energy resources are being relegated to not doing much else other than stare dumbly at the telly when I get home. This too shall pass. So until after March 11th, please be kind, check in from time to time, or sign up for Kinja to get the first official word that I'm alive and well. Much love.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

NOoooooooOOOOO!

NHL Commissioner Bettman Cancels Season.

The world sucks. But at least we still have the Rochester Amerks. I'll be salivating for some hockey until we get to see them play sometime in March with my dad.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Non-intentional Disappearance

I didn't intentionally break away from the blogging world. Au contraire! I have at least 3 to 4 topics I could blog about in regards to the weekend. Everything from the political to the romantic. And will I eventually do this? It's quite possible! Yes! It is!

In the meantime, my thought for the morning is, why don't morning radio shows play music anymore? One local pop music radio station went a half hour without any real music. Instead, I had to be tortured by stupid gags and a total lack of substance. I think there was some news and weather in there, but it was totally obscured by the crap around it. Then when they finally played a song, it was Jennifer Lopez's latest dance hit.

All I want is a quick recap of news and weather and then MUSIC, damnit. And people wonder why I'm constantly plugged into my iPod and don't listen to local radio anymore.

Ok, I need to go to work.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

A Night Out..

Courtesy of the Chautauqua WORD, Matt and I are going to see Wendell Rivera at the Reg Friday night. We decided to give it a night-out-on-the-town feel by getting dinner before the concert at Forte. That's assuming that Matt was able to make reservations.

The night is also doubling as our Valentine's date since we hadn't planned anything else. We're actually not too hyper about that particular holiday, but we do try to do something nice for each other. When we first started dating, we did the whole flower thing for each other. In recent history, Matt has bestowed gift certificates for one of the day spas in the area, or we've gone out for dinner together. As much as I love day spa stuff, I also like spending that time together.

I know people think the holiday is commercialized and something dreamt up by Hallmark to make us feel obligated to buy fattening or expensive baubles for our significant others, but for Matt and I, it gives us a real excuse to just have time together. Sappy, yes. But we're so busy that we almost need this built-in "lovers" holiday so we can get away, even for an hour or two, without guilt.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Wil Is Going to Be On CSI!!!

Wil Wheaton is going to be on CSI!!!. I'm not what you traditionally call a starf*cker, but this is great news. I love that show (even though I've been missing it due to orchestra rehearsals) and I think it's great that a cool guy like Wil is getting a chance to show everyone else what a decent actor he is. Good times!

Saturday, February 05, 2005

FactCheck.org: Social Security "Bankruptcy?"

I subscribe to FactCheck.org's mailing list, just because I like to find out the back story on what is being spun to the public.

Here is the transcript for President Bush's 2005 State of the Union

Read that first.

Okay, done? Good. I like my readers to be informed. Now here's a quick summary of the latest email I received from FactCheck.org:

In his State of the Union Address, President Bush said again that the Social Security system is headed for "bankruptcy," a term that could give the wrong idea. Actually, even if it goes "bankrupt" a few decades from now, the system would still be able to pay about three-quarters of the benefits now promised.

Bush also made his proposed private Social Security accounts sound like a sure thing, which they are not. He said they "will" grow fast enough to provide a better return than the present system. History suggests that will be so, but nobody can predict what stock and bond markets will do in the future.

Bush left out any mention of what workers would have to give up to get those private acounts -- a proportional reduction or offset in guaranteed Social Security retirement benefits. He also glossed over the fact that money in private accounts would be "owned" by workers only in a very limited sense -- under strict conditions which the President referred to as "guidelines." Many retirees, and possibly the vast majority, wouldn't be able to touch their Social Security nest egg directly, even after retirement, because the government would take some or all of it back and convert it to a stream of payments guaranteed for life.


Click the link below for the full article:
http://www.factcheck.org/article305m.html

Friday, February 04, 2005

Welcome to Sue Happy USA

Two girls successfully sued for dropping off cookies to a neighbor. I don't think any comment from me is necessary. The story speaks for itself.

Quietly Laughing

It's rather telling when 85% of Microsoft employees own an iPod.

Kind of like how Firefox already has over 5% of the browser market after only being released this past November.

Just goes to show, if something isn't working for you, then find a way to make change happen. That's a little nod to Kevin H. in response to his comment a few posts down.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Cult of Scientology: Entire Four Part Series

The hazzards of reading something on the Internet is that I got my series numbers mixed up on the Scientology stories in the Buffalo News. Here are the links for all four stories:

Part One: Enlightenment's Dark Side
Part Two: Being In, Breaking Out
Part Three: Helping Spread The Word
Part Four: Outside Critics Are Unacceptable

Addendum:
Since the Buffalo News archives stories rather quickly and then wants you to pay to read the articles, someone nicely posted in my comments a link to the Jeremy Perkins: A Scientology Tragedy site. That site has a lot more information on the Jeremy Perkins story (obviously) links to transcripts of the Buffalo News series free of charge.

Dean! Dean! Dean!

I thank Drudge for my exuberant title. I'm more than psyched that Howard Dean is a front-runner to head the Democratic National Committee!!

This is a good thing! Maybe the DNC will be able to get its head out of its arse with Dean leading the pact and finally run some effective campaigns, with or without a war cry. Hey, you have to poke fun occasionally.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

The Cult of Scientology

The Buffalo News has a three-part series on Scientology. Today's story is about a local family that got sucked into the cult, but got out. It's disgusting how this organization brainwashes people. And when you consider how many Hollywood celebs (John Travolta) are Scientologists, you have to feel sorry for them that their lives are such that they have to turn to a cult. But Scientology is so late 1990's. We all know the cult du jour for celebrities, like Madonna, is Kabbalah.

More linkage:
Scientology Lies
Has Madonna Joined A Cult?

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...