Things I Love And Hate, Part Two
Musings about the things I love most: my family, sports, music, TV, food and travel. A few thoughts here and there about the things I hate. There aren’t many. Also, the chronicle of my effort to build my own TV network.
Monday, February 28, 2005
Sunday, February 27, 2005
Oscars, After One Hour
Chris Rock sure rocks.
Aviator looks like it will win everthing.
Why is Dustin Hoffman on screen so much?
Neither Drew or Renee look good in black hair.
Can't Cate Blanchett's husband afford a tie?
Beyonce singing in French?
Who was Billy Crystal?
Glad It's a Fake
Dude, it looks real and it looks like it hurts.
Saturday, February 26, 2005
More from Cactus League
Day two of our pre-Spring Training hunt was awesome. Video will come as soon as my Web host (that stores my video clips) is up again.
We began the day at Gene Autry Park (aptly named for the former owner of the Angels) nesteld among the citrus groves of West Mesa where we hoped to see the Anaheim/LA/Southern California/Tustin Angels. We were there at 9:45 am, and clearly we were at the right place; the team was not there. OK… where were they? Maybe Arte Moreno gave them the day off?
On the way to West Mesa, we passed Fitch Park, the pre-Spring Training site of the Cubs. We’ve been there before, and, in another lifetime actually worked there. A story for another day. The crowd was building, so I suggested we head over to see the Oakland A’s practice in Papago Park. The park is hidden among the Red Rocks and has a breathtaking backdrop. We made our way over to the park and the crowds were light. It is the most fan friendly of the current camp sites with players walking around from practice field to field with little or no security.
Aside from a run-in with a numb-nuts security guard, who hassled me over my parking spot, it was a fantastic time. Truly a highlight was seeing Huston Street, who has been pictured and chronicled on this blog back in November as the star of the championship Arizona Fall League game. Street signed everyone’s autograph and said thank you to everyone and was a sheer delight. I commented to another fan that being the son of a former pro athlete (Texas Longhorn QB Jim Street) he knows how to handle himself in public. We’re pulling for him to be Rookie of the Year.
Actually, we’re now probably done with pre-Spring Training. Our first game is next Saturday with the Giants at Ho Ho Kam to play the Sosa-less Cubs. It will be my first time seeing two Alous (Felipe and son Moises) on the same field on the same team since I was about 10 years old and all three Alou brothers (Felipe, Matty and Jesus) played for the Giants.
Friday, February 25, 2005
What were the chances that Paraguay would appear twice in the script of last night's "West Wing?"
Almost Live from Cactus League
We had an absolute blast at Spring Training camp today. We made our way to Peoria to get the best bang for our buck—both the Mariners and Padres practice there. Even though the Giants are closer, the army of reporters around Barry makes it very un-fan friendly.
I was shocked at all the folks from Washington State at the M’s warm up site. My wife reminded me it’s ski week up in the PNW, meaning kids are off from school. Everyone was cordial and very respectful of the players. Click here to see my video clip from the M’s side of Spring Training camp.
We then drove over to the Padres side of the complex. There were far fewer fans which allowed us to get more up close and personal. We saw HOF member Dave Winfield giving some advice to the current crop of Padres. Click here to see Winfield give some tips to new Padre Dave Roberts.
Tomorrow, we’re off the Mesa to see the Cubs (it will be packed) and the Angels (much less crowded). I hope to get Bad Vlad on video.
M's and Padres?
Now that the weather has cleared, we're going to dash over to Peoria (AZ, that is) and see if we can catch a glimpse of the Mariners and Padres doing their pre-Spring Training thing.
Video and pictures to come...
Wednesday, February 23, 2005
While watching Cedric the Entertainer last night, I couldn’t help but think about the late George Kirby. It’s not a racial thing by any means; both are incredibly talented performers who can sing, dance, tell jokes and act.
Sadly, Kirby’s career evolved in a less enlightened period of our times. I saw him perform live once and he would have been a Superstar in today’s world.
All Star Tuesday Night
It all started later afternoon when ESPN was showing the live press conference of Barry Bonds talking about the steroid controversy. Bonds was defiant, funny, angry, and darned right Barry. The conference was held at Scottsdale Stadium, the site of the Giants’ Spring Training games, literally a few blocks from the site of the pre-Spring Training camp where I took the pictures of a few days ago.
So, I told my wife (who likes Bonds as much as I do) that Barry was definitely going to be at the Cedric the Entertainer show that night. Right, the same one we would be attending. She seemed puzzled yet hopeful.
The ride to the show was grueling, Despite new freeways, Phoenix-Scottsdale is growing at a too-rapid pace. The difference between traffic here and say Seattle or The Bay Area, is that there are many ways to get from here to there. Get off the freeway and head down this road and then cut over to that road and then…. No lakes, rivers, Bays or streams to get in the way of circumventing the city.
We arrive at the Tempe Improv in time for the dinner, which was better than you might expect at a comedy club. The tables are very close, and seated next to us were three men and the wife of one of the men. I recognized one right away—former Texas Rangers and Diamondbacks pitcher Rick Helling. His wife sat to his left. To his right was an athletic looking guy with a beard. After a few minuets of intense eavesdropping, I realized it was Todd Walker, the Cubs second baseman. I wrote all this info on a napkin and casually slipped it to my wife. I gave her the nod prior to that, confirming her suspicions that yes, they were baseball players. Mind you, given so many pro athletes live in Socttsdale, my wife thinks everyone here is an athlete, but this time, she was on the money.
We ate, played cards and listened with great delight to Walker and Helling talk about baseball. Not sure how they know each other, but then again, who cares. They both played for the Twins, but not at the same time.
A table right by the stage remained empty, so my wife speculated that a celeb would be popping in to sit there at the last minute. A short while later, that table was taken, and it didn’t appear to be a celeb.
About 10 minutes to showtime, it happened—in walks Barry Bonds. Bonds was trailed by all six foot eleven inches of NBA Hall of Famer Bob Lanier. Lanier is a former Suns coach and I think he still works for the team. Bonds and his group (his wife later joined them) sat at a table adjacent to ours. He clearly was the center of attention, but no one really hassled him. Let me tell you, he is a big man. And, if that’s not enough, Lanier (reputed to be a gentle giant) still looks like he could play center at 265 pounds.
The warm-up guy was quite funny and directed some jokes to Barry. He said that Bonds might hit tons of homers in real life, but in his Playstation ® game, he sucks.
And then came Cedric. He was funny, clever, jovial and everything you could might. He too joked with Bonds, but in a more direct manner, commenting on the steroid allegation. Cedric was disarming, saying that everyone who performs great in their field would not be accused of steroids, like the cast of Friends and Simon from “American Idol.” Bonds laughed.
Cedric was on for close to an hour and had the crowd in stitches. I could only imagine seeing The Original Kings (Cedric, Steve Harvey, Bernie Mac and DL Hughly) in their prime. Wow. He and Bonds shook hands as Cedric made his way off stage.
The crowd dispersed and camera phones were snapping pictures of Bonds as he gracefully left with a big smile on his face. I only wish I could have told him how much his playing meant to me in 2000 when he kept me going while my wife battled cancer. I did shake Rick Helling’s hand and told him to have a great season…and stay healthy. I later learned that he’s in the Spring Training camp of the Brewers (they train in nearby Maryvale).
The NBA had its All Star weekend last Saturday and Sunday. We had an All Star Tuesday night.
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
The Next Randy Johnson?
Yesterday, when we were at pitchers and catchers day at The Giants pre-Spring Training, I saw Alfredo Simon. Damn, he's a big dude who looks like he can throw hard (not that I saw him pitch.. he just looks like he can throw hard). What's of note in the Giants MLB site (see link below) is how his fantasy stats compare him to The Big Unit. Mind you, this is without Simon ever throwing a major league pitch. For all we know he could be the next Randall Simon... or even Neil Simon.
San Francisco Giants : Player Information
Last night, I took my first step into the world of politics. My wife and I—newly appointed (as opposed to elected) Precinct Committeemen—attended our first monthly meeting of the LD7 Arizona Democrats. About 15 people braved the rain and holiday weekend for the 90 minute gathering.
I am struck at the level of sincerity of those present. There is no pay involved and the driving motivation is little more than civic duty and a desire to be part of the solution. The talk was of how the Democratic Party can build coalition and consensus rather than exist as a group of segmented splinters. One man told his story on how he became “an activist” in the party.
I was generally quiet. My time to speak up will evolve. I still plan on running for U.S. Congress although there is somewhat of a dilemma. In order to gain the state Democratic Party support, I will no doubt need to run for some sort of office prior to Congress. I am not willing to commit major amounts of time to such an endeavor given my work schedule. Maybe there’s some job—like dog catcher (which doesn’t really physically involve chasing after canines)—that I can undertake in the meantime.
Monday, February 21, 2005
Catching the Pitchers
The forecast looks gloomy for later today, but we figured there might be a window of time to bolt down to the Giants pre-Spring Training park to gawk at pitchers and catchers. Bingo.
There were about 30 other nuts there, all very well behaved. The Giants have instituted a railing setup a few years ago to create a runway to allow the players on and off the practice field without being overly hassled. Still, many are very gracious about stopping to sign autographs for the fans.
Among those at the warm-up were:
Jerome Williams--a favorite of ours. He has a great smile and is wonderful with kids.
And of course the man who is responsible for building the team
The position players arrive today. Barry is allegedly speaking to the press tomorrow about all the steroid nonsense. Hopefully, I’ll be back later in the week with my new MPEG-4 video camera.
Sunday, February 20, 2005
All That Was Missing Was ...
Back in the day, my wife, my father and I would come to Mr. Sushi a lot. I mean a lot. You don’t think of sushi in the desert, but Mr. Sushi was our place circa 1990, 1991 and for a while in 1992 (before our daughter came on the scene) before we moved to SF in 1993. We used to eat sushi with my father in Seattle at Nikko, our all-time, favorite, #1 sushi place, but for the desert, Mr. Sushi was as good as it got.
We have not been there in 12 years, and actually thought it had closed, but some friends were talking about it a few weeks ago. So, after a more than decade hiatus, tonight, we returned. Actually, with two massive freeways in place, Mr. Sushi is only 25 minutes from our house even though we live considerably farther away compared to the early ‘90s.
The food did not disappoint. We had tempura and all sorts of sushi. And, our course, all we talked about was our missing Mr. Sushi diner. The evening was great. All that was missing was my father.
A Phoenix Must to Avoid: "For Better or Worse"
If you’re looking for a great evening (or matinee) of theater in Phoenix, I beg you, I implore you, I warn you—do not go see “For Better or Worse,” an Arizona Theater Company performance. It is awful.
We have the entire 2004-2005 series, so you cannot pick and choose which ones to see. So far, this year, it’s been mostly clunkers. I have implored my wife not to buy the entire series next year. We’ll get tickets for the shows that sound good.
This one is bad dinner theater and is totally chuckle free with a lot of bathroom jokes—not bathroom humor ala Adam Sandler—bathroom jokes. That is, jokes about going to the bathroom. Never mind. The actors bravely try in the beginning try, but actually wind up chewing on the scenery toward the end. We raced out of the theater as if we were double parked.
So, you are warned.
With our pre-Spring Training tour washed out, our day took a different turn. We instead opted for lunch and a movie. Since we were shut out of “Sideways” a few weeks ago, we arrived at the theater nice and early and were the first ones in the theater for the afternoon showing.
I loved the film; my wife was lukewarm. The movie was lyrical in its tone and a brilliant piece of filmmaking from Alexander Payne. He has grown as an artist from “Election” to “About Schmidt” to this work. The performances were phenomenal as it is clear Payne is an actor’s director. The Central California wine country took on a dual role as playground for elite wine snobs as well as home for the lower middle class. How Payne wove these two diverse concepts was an amazing touch.
Nothing about the plot—you can see it for yourself. One note, though: lead actor Paul Giamatti (he deserves an Oscar nomination) is the son of the late A. Bartlett Giamatti, former president of Yale University and former commissioner of Major League Baseball. In one scene, when Giamatti is at his mother’s house, he is looking at old family pictures. I swear one of the photos is of the actor and his late father.
After the movie, we headed home to take in the NBA All Star Saturday Night fest on TNT. It was shown in Hi Def, but my lame cable system does not have TNT in its Hi Def lineup. Anyway, I was entertained and appalled. I thought Amare Stoudemire’s dunk off a head pass from Steve Nash was cool. I thought nearly everything else was sad and nothing more than marketing the Hip Hop nation to middle class America. I have blogged before questioning the attraction White Kids have to rap music; this is more of the same. Clearly, the NBA has proclaimed itself the Hip Hop league, but it strikes me as a bit short-sighted and narrow in its thinking. When the New Orleans Hornets’ Chris Andersen floundered in the slam dunk contest, making him a center for hilarity and derision, I would like to know who did not see racial undertones in that ugly scene?
I did love Charles Barkley’s comment about Vladimir Radmanovic who was a contestant in the 3 point shootout. Barkley said that Radmanovic was a good player, but because he played in Seattle, which is “in the middle of nowhere,” no one knows about him. Middle of nowhere? The Chuckster was too kind.
Saturday, February 19, 2005
Gamed Rained Out
Doggone it, it’s pouring here today. No pre-Spring Training tour. Even if it clears up, there’s no way teams will let those multmilliondollar players on the wet field to get in harm’s way.
Friday, February 18, 2005
Picthers, Catchers--But No Me
Just a few miles from here pitchers and catchers are on the field. They are stretching and playing long toss and getting ready for Spring Training. And, sadly, I have not been to their pre-Camp sites to snap pictures and drink in the milieu. It’s been a busy work week.
I am headed down to see a few teams tomorrow if the weather cooperates. Pictures on this site if I go.
No doubt, as soon as I have my new Sanyo Xacti in my hands (it’s winging its way here as we speak) I will have pre-Spring Training camp as my first videoblog posting.
Thursday, February 17, 2005
Years ago, some irrelevant person told my wife she wasn’t the sort of person who should own a bread maker. Today, that person is even more irrelevant as we just purchased one from Amazon.com.
The key factor--the local bakery that sells high-quality sourdough bread (the only kind suitable for diabetics) has been slipping since a change in ownership; we suspect they are near death. So, we went to Epinions, found one everyone raves about, and a few clicks later, the bread maker is on the way. I see Atkins makes a sourdough mix for bread makers. Cool. The mind boggles at the odd “stuff” we’ll add such as toasted fennel seeds, rosemary (which grows abundantly in our yard) and other assorted herbal concoctions.
The Babe Would Have Juiced
Jose is a putz, but he won the award, so it's his to keep. I find it difficult to believe (given his predisposition for booze and the like) that The Babe wouldn't have juiced.
Yahoo! News - Former MVP Runner-Up Wants Canseco's Award
Cedric the Entertainer
I am a big fan of Cedric the Entertainer. I actually don’t know his real name, but love his work not only in those strange Budweiser commercials, but also in OKC (Original Kings of Comedy) and on “The Steve Harvey Show.” He’s in some movie that looks like a remake of National Lampoon’s Vacation which I watched last year without sound on the airplane... this is not to mention his role in in both Barbershop movies. His scene with Queen Latifah in Barbershop 2 is priceless. Cedric has a certain sweetness about him that is totally disarming and comic at the same time. If I am not mistaken, he plays a bad guy in “Be Cool,” the upcoming sequel to “Get Shorty.”
Anyway, he’s in town next week at the Tempe Improv, and we’re fixin’ to get tickets so I can appreciate him live.
Wednesday, February 16, 2005
Tuesday, February 15, 2005
For three days, I have been a shadow attendee at a local tech conference that had an odd policy on outside research analysts. Whatever. As a shadow delegate, I have met with some folks whose companies are in my “research space” since they were in town.
Anyway, while waiting for a meeting, I overheard one of those conversations you can only hear in the lobby of a conference hotel. As background, the hotel was also hosting a group of osteopaths. The scene was a husband and wife (I assume an osteopath and his wife) and a younger man, clearly a marketing sort for a conference organizing company.
Conference organizer: You know, we’d better make our plans pretty soon, because cadavers are expensive and in short supply. If we need a few for the conference, we’d better lock in a date.
Osteopath: You’re right.
Conference organizer: Now that we have that settled, let’s talk about the most important item on the agenda—are you free for dinner tonight? There’s a great steak place up near Pinnacle Peak.
At that point, I got up and left otherwise I would have lost my lunch.
Monday, February 14, 2005
Ah, Young (and Older) Love
Quote of the day, referring to the pending nuptials of the Seattle PWT teacher and her former sixth grade student, with whom she fell in love (and was willing to go to prison for):
"It's been long overdue," Noel Soriano, a friend of the couple, told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer in a story published Monday. "It's going to be fabulous, seeing them get hitched finally."
The Cup Will Be Empty This Season
Saturday, February 12, 2005
I have lamented the fact that my prized Gerald Genta watch is on the fritz. I am in process of trying to connect with the recommended repair person in New Hampshire, but he has odd work hours and is not great about returning calls. Ah, these skilled artisans.
So, in the meantime, I am now in possession of a Nooka. Yes, a Nooka. It arrived today. I saw it on someone’s Website. It is cool. Very cool. It’s not a Gerald Genta, but it will keep me happy until I get that baby fixed.
Friday, February 11, 2005
A Drawback of Living in Arizona
It will be a long wait for this movie to come here. Seattle is showing it at a cool theater where my wife and I first saw "Risky Business."
Bride and Prejudice Movie Info - Yahoo! Movies
Part of the Vision
This is what Mike McGuire and I are talking about in our research.
Yahoo! News - Boston Plans Wireless Access in Subways
Thursday, February 10, 2005
Countdown to Spring Training
Three weeks and two days until our first Spring Training game. It will be in Mesa, Cubs hosting the Giants. No Barry Bonds (he’s recuperating from surgery), but you have to love the dynamics: Dusty on the Cubs; Moises Alou (and dad) on the Giants.
Before Spring Training, we’ll wander down to the park on the corner of Hayden & Camelback to see the Giants warm up. They will begin straggling in over the next week; we checked today to see if anyone was around, and the place was deserted save for the groundskeeper getting things ready. The warm up site used to be a well-kept secret; back in ’92, I stood next to the cage and talked to Dusty. Now, it’s fairly crowded with autograph seekers.
Leads me to wonder: will the Giants have Alou Day this year at SBC? I’d fly up to see Felipe, Jesus, Moises and Matty on the same field. It’s not The Beatles reunion, but for me, it’s darned close. I do believe Matty, Jesus and Felipe all played for the Giants in the field at the same time in the early ‘60s. Matty’s best years were in Pittsburgh; Jesus’ were in Houston.
Note to Brian Sabean (Giants GM): Please—Alou Day!!
In Our House...
More than 20 years ago, when we were Seattle-ites, we were sorting our "stuff" into bins every week. And we still do!
Yahoo! News - Seattle Mandatory Recycling Law in Effect
Wednesday, February 09, 2005
The World Series of Egos
Wild Night At Wild Oats
We made it to the opening of Wild Oats despite me being somewhat under the weather. (When the makers of Benadryl ® say diabetics should not take it, they mean it). The parking lot was overflowing about 20 minutes after the opening night bell went off. And it was startling; tons of freeloaders willing to wait in long lines in the parking lot for a sample of cheese or a tiny piece of BBQ-ed salmon. Yikes. And it was all people who are unlikely to come back and shop regularly at the store. (It’s what we in the vernacular call the “old cocker” crowd).
Inside, the store was jammed with more people willing to wait in long lines. A piece of bread here, a sampling of smoothee there, a thimble-sized cup of free coffee, etc… The lines to ACTUALLY BUY SOMETHING were scant.
OK.. Stepping back for a moment, the store is nice. The produce is varied (we bought purple morning radishes, being former Marin County food s-n-o-b-s) and the seafood looks fresh. I could not see the meat department as there was a long line of freeloaders wanting a tiny piece of free fish. My gauge for a store in this realm is the tea selection. I have to say, it was superb. They had Tazo ® tea on sale for $2.99 a box and with the entire line on display. That trumps the $3.99 we paid the other day at the (beloved) Whole Foods.
Speaking of, Wild Oats is not and never will be Whole Foods. (Editors note—My wife and I own stock in Whole Foods). WF is unbeatable. It crosses the line of being a natural food marketplace to being a true gourmet food abondanza. Throughout the night, I whispered to my wife, “Our money is safe.” The only “food store” that is in WF’s league is the inimitable Trader Joes.
Tuesday, February 08, 2005
Where Ford Falcons Go To Die
In 1985, my wife and I were amazed at the number of "old" (as opposed to vintage) cars that populate the streets of Uruguay. How on earth do they get there?
Yahoo! News - Sleepy Uruguay Races to Rescue Its Vintage Cars
If you haven’t seen Vid Lits, you must go look at them. They are a series of Flash ® created vignettes whose clever storylines show the far expanses of the medium. The most recent Vid Lit is an ad for an Off-Broadway play, “Modern Orthodox.” The reviews have been pretty good (NY Times, Village Voice) with a cute premise.
My wife and I have to figure out a way to get to NY and see the play before it closes. That will be a challenge.
Another New Supermarket
Talk about big fun. Tonight, we are going to the pre-Grand Opening party of yet another new supermarket in our area. Wild Oats, the poor cousin of our beloved Whole Foods, is opening a brand spakin’ new store a few miles from us. We’ll be there tonight for free samples.
Film at 11.
Monday, February 07, 2005
The D-backs New Centerfielder
Cruz Jr. hasn't played center in a few years, so this is a strange move. He's a solid player, but strikes out a lot (117 times last year). I think, the last time he regularly played center was with the Blue Jays, and guess who was standing to his left (rightfield)? Shawn Green. Seems like old times.
ESPN.com - MLB - D-Backs trade Fossum to D-Rays for Cruz Jr.
More on Super Bowl Ads
Monday morning SB commercial quarterback:
*If you go to the Go Daddy Website, the ad that did not run is there plus an explanation from Go Daddy’s CEO, Bob Parsons. I am not prude, but there is something somewhat questionable toward the end. One more thing—am I just a crazy film buff, or did the ad feature Nikki Caepelli as homage to a character in the Steve Martin film, “My Blue Heaven?”
*I totally missed the MSN Search ad. I saw it this morning on the iFilm page. It’s a decent ad, but nothing spectacular.
*In my review of the ads, I didn’t mention the car ads. Mostly because no one buys a car based on a TV ad. Or least no one in his or her right mind.
*The Vcast ad for Verizon does not mention the cost of the service, the cost of a new phone or the fact that current Verizon service holders probably must extend their service agreements to get the broadband content. Until the cell companies allow current customers to just buy new phones WITHOUT a penalty, these new services will flounder.
Sunday, February 06, 2005
Super Bowl Ads
Here’s a quick look at Super Bowl 39 commercials. By and large, they were tame and not memorable… that is unless (like me) you miss M.C. Hammer. Hammer was in two ads (Ameriquest and Frito Lay)
**Olympus M:robe—Who cares about the commercial. I like the product!
**FedEx Kinkos—My favorite. I smile anytime Burt Reynolds gets kicked in the groin.
**GoDaddy—I swear the local paper said the ad was rejected by Fox. It aired nonetheless. It was as raunchy as the ads went this year. Had nothing to do with an Internet naming service. Stinko!
**Ameriquest—Best set of ads. “Life comes at you quickly.” The one with the guy holding the cat by the tail in a vat of tomato sauce was good.
**McDonalds—The Lincoln French fry was flat out bad.
**Napster—Did anyone other than the technocrats understand what Napster now is selling?
**Careerbuilder—Monkeys? Are you kidding me? I do like when they Xerox ® their butts.
**Anheuser-Busch—Clapping for U.S. service people in the airport. Nice touch in light of the generally horrible beer ads during the game.
**Pepsi—P Diddy arrives in a Pepsi truck. X-to-the-Z saved that spot from disaster
**Degree—Mamas Boy dolls. A bit overboard. Had nothing at all to do with the product.
**NFL Network—Maybe the very best ad. All the players who didn’t make the Super Bowl (Rothlisberger, etc...) singing “The Sun Will Come out Tomorrow.” Nice touch.
Notes: The beer commercials stunk. My wife liked the ones with the animals for Budweiser, but I didn’t get it. The Heineken ad with Brad Pitt was trite but very well produced.
Looks like the dream of a Philadelphia Super Bowl will have to wait another year. My daughter and I are eating the victory cookie that my wife bought for us, anticipating an Iggles win. It’s a green-frosted cookie with “Eagles” written on it—sure is sweeter than the game results.
We got home in time for the beginning of the 4th quarter. The Eagles never gave up, and that alone has to make you proud. Better clock management sure would have helped, but the SB experience the Pats brought to the game is tough to beat. Maybe next year. My wife points out it's a two-for-three run for New England (Bosox and Pats win, Kerry loses).
Later, we’ll watch the commercials from the first three quarters. As a media guy, I am actually more interested in the commercials than the game highlights.
The Cavalia “horsecapades’ was as strange as expected. The part with the horses doing all sorts of moves and near-dance steps is quite cool; the part where a bunch of acrobats jump around the stage, fly from trapezes, etc... is lame. I told my wife and daughter that it reminded me of the Seinfeld episode where a bunch of acrobat-clowns climbed up on stage and stole Jerry’s Friars Club jacket. Actually, it was much funnier on TV.
I have to admit, as a fan of frat-boy, bathroom humor, my lasting memory of Cavalia will be the fact that one of the star horses “did his business” on stage. Not very often you get to see the star of the show use the stage as his personal toilet.
Agreed: Eagles 21, Pats 17
I can see it now. Finally, a Super Bowl for Philadelphia.
Philadelphia Inquirer | 02/06/2005 | Bill Lyon | Day of Destiny
Saturday, February 05, 2005
Long Time in Coming
My two favorite songs from The Dramatics are now on Rhapsody!
Pays to Have a Smart Spouse
I gave up on the U2 tickets. My wife hung in there and screamed when they added a second show on 4/15 about 12 minutes after the tickets went on sale.
I got two online and she got two on the phone!
I Was This Close
I had the tickets for U2 in my proverbial clutches. But, because I logged in using my Ticketmaster account (which contained a credit card number since cancelled) I lost 'em.
Still trying. Looks bleak.
Plans in Place
We're excited. At long last, the plans for our daughter's Bat Mitzvah are in place. Should be wonderful.
SB39 and U2
Two big events this weekend: U2 and SB 39. In about 54 minutes, I will attempt to get tickets to see U2 here in Phoenix. Actually, Glendale, the home of the Phoenix Coyotes (who have not played there since last April due to the NHL strike). I rate my ticket chances at about 30 percent. I read they sold out in minutes in Dublin. That’s Ireland, not Ohio.
I will not be watching SB39 live. We have tickets to see Cavalia, a cool show I call “the horse-capades.” My wife, with wonderful intentions, did not know the date of SB39 when she purchased the tickets for Cavalia. I told her, after hearing that our show tickets coincides with the SB, announced that it guaranteed the Iggles would be in the game. She has offered to sell the tix, but my plan is to just record the game and watch it when we get home. The wrinkle comes in the fact that (for some strange reason) Cavalia is playing in a location adjacent to the FBR Open. Considering The Open will likely draw somewhere in the neighborhood of 170,000 people for the last day of the golf tourney, parking and traffic will be nightmarish. My hunch his we’ll get home in time for Monday’s “Today” show.
Friday, February 04, 2005
I just read where there were more than 70,000 people yesterday at the FBR Open. That would make it the second largest sporting event I have ever attended. Back in the late ‘60s-early ‘70s, I went to a few Army-Navy football games at JFK stadium in Philadelphia. There were in excess of 100,000 people at those games.
Didn’t seem like there were that many people there, but the tourney is way spread out. Hats off to those folks who handle logistics.
BTW, the reason I have no pictures from The Open is that cameras were not allowed. Plenty of folks snuck 'em in anyway plus cell phones (which also were banished). Forgot to mention, we did get to meet Camelback Jack, a local deejay from KOOL-FM; he's a family fave.
Thursday, February 03, 2005
I think it's been about 12 years since our last Phoenix Open. My wife says we were rubes then; maybe we're still rubes, but we have put on a lot of miles since then.
As the badge (above) says, we were guests of Icrossing and Overture, the companies at whose event I spoke yesterday. When we eventually found their tent, I joked that they could use a search engine to find their tent among the mass of humanity on the first day of the tourney.
It was fun: sunny, but a bit windy. It's a beer and cigar event which makes for a festive atmosphere, and I'd say only about 30 percent of the crowd actually watched the golfers. But then again, it was day one.
We wandered by a cooking demo that featured some former Phoenix Suns (Tom Chambers and Vinnie Del Negro) and two D-backs (Chad Tracy and Koyie Hill) along with some local celeb chefs. Years ago, when Chambers played for the Sonics, and they drew about 20 people in the Kingdome, I'd sit near the bench and heckle Chambers, calling him a ball hog. As if he cared... After the cooking demo (during which I won a prize for knowing which college Del Negro attended) we went up to Koyie Hill land wished him good luck on the upcoming season. He was very gracious, so he's made two fans.
We wandered over to the Bird's Nest, an open-air music thing-a-ma-bob, but Mister Excitement here was put off by the cigar smoke.
Never Seen One, Never Will
I have been lucky enough to avoid seeing the TV show and all it's related movies.
Yahoo! News - 'Star Trek: Enterprise' to End in May
At Least You Can Trust Alton Brown
Thank heaven for all those TV channels on my cable box plus everything on my DVR. Last night, I was able to totally avoid the State of the Union and watch Alton Brown make a potato gratin on “Good Eats,” his amazing show on Food Network. The show was much more insightful and far more useful (and truthful) than what I was likely to find from the live broadcast dominating the major networks.
Wednesday, February 02, 2005
Better Suited for a Role in "Fat Actress?"
After Kirstie gets all nice and svelte, I see Martha (pigging out in the pokey) as the new fat actress.
Yahoo! News - Stewart to Star in New 'Apprentice'
He'd Be Proud
I get energized when I get to talk about the work Mike and I are doing. Today, I was lucky enough to present in front of a gathering hosted by iCrossing and Overture. The event was for the company’s dispersed personnel as well as their top clients. I did 40 minutes of Media Titans song & dance and I think it went over well. For me, it was a 25 minute ride to the event, so it was low-impact event which turned out to be some time well spent.
Because the event is being tuned to coincide with the FBR (nee phoenix) Open, iCrossing and Overture are hosting a corporate tent at the Open. I was invited to come along tomorrow and interact with those eager people who didn’t have time to pose Q&A today.
Guess I did something that would have made my dad proud.
Today is my father’s birthday. He would have been 88 years old today. He’s been gone for 11 years. Not a lot I’ll choose to say about him in this “public” venue.
My wife asked what I’ll do today to honor him. I said that I’ll try and make him proud in some way, just like I tried when he was alive.
Tuesday, February 01, 2005
Isn't This Something Like His 100th Violation?
A Proud Simon Gratz HS Grad
Just like my mother. Several decades apart.
Ben Maller : Archives
There will again be bike riding in my future!
I have two mountain bikes sitting in my garage gathering dust. Don’t ask me why I have two, it’s a long story. Anyway, my wife (who cannot ride a two-wheeler) is getting a cool trike for V-Day, so soon I will have a bike riding partner. My bet is that my daughter—who also isn’t much of a bike rider—will be inspired to join us on the road. Her bike, too, is gathering dust.