Sunday, July 31, 2005

Media Coverage

I usually don't criticize the mainstream media, but in my opinion, there has not been nearly enough coverage of the terrorist attacks and its aftermath in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt from last Friday. I do not want to diminish the sad story about Natalee Holloway, who has been missing in Aruba for more than two months, but I don't think I've seen a story about the bombings in Egypt since the middle of last week while there are still daily reports from Aruba.

Sorry for the moment of being serious. I'll have a lot of good stuff tomorrow including some special mid-day posts!

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Washington Monuments

Since I am going to miss the tournament next weekend, I had my final ultimate frisbee game last night. The games are usually spread out throughout the DC area, and last night was the first time this season I played on a field next to the reflecting pool. Even though I have lived in the DC area for the past four years, I rarely go to the Mall unless I'm playing a tour guide for family and friends. I really take the Mall for granted. I enjoyed walking by the Washington Monument, World War II Memorial and Lincoln Monument before and after the game. Seeing the monuments and the Capital Building at night is always beautiful. In case you were curious, my team won the game 13-8 (called for darkness), and despite a few poor throws, I played very well.

Thursday, July 28, 2005


I went to Kohl's over the weekend because I needed dress socks and was hoping to find some good deals on short-sleeve shirts and shorts. Overall, a successful trip...or so I thought. Yesterday, I wore a pair of my new black socks to go along with my black pants and black shoes. When I got home from work, I noticed that the socks seemed to look different than the socks and pants. It turns out that the black socks are actually dark brown. Now that I've worn one pair and taken the other two pairs out of the package, I guess that I'm stuck with them. The morale of the story: stores should sort socks based on color!

ESPN 50 States Tour

As you may or may not know, ESPN Sportscenter is visiting 50 states in 50 days in order to show sports in various states. In reality, they are probably hoping for some improved ratings during the summer and are able to fill some time before football season begins. Anyway, since Washington DC is not a state, they are not getting any coverage. Mayor Anthony Williams submitted a press release questioning why ESPN snubbed the District. Personally, I think DC government should focus on other issues such as the budget, statehood and education, but I agree with Williams. The Washington Area Frisbee Club, in which I am a part of, is following the Mayor's lead by attempting to get ESPN to visit DC to showcase Ultimate Frisbee as among the largest co-ed participant sports played in DC. If you are interested in finding out more about this, check out the WAFC website.

New Quiz

If you ever wanted to know if you are more Yankee or Dixie based on language that you use (or even if you didn't really want to know), here is a link for a quiz. I was 53% Dixie for whatever that's worth.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Way Past My Bedtime

I just finished the 6th Harry Potter after reading non-stop for the past 2.5 hours. I will not give anything away, but I certainly want to talk to people who have finished the book. I think this is the best of the series, and the 7th book cannot come up soon enough. J.K. Rowling should be given anything she wants (like seclusion for a year or her own coffee shop in Edinburgh) to write and finish the last book. I'm really going to be hurting in the morning.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Dream Analysis

I rarely remember my dreams, but there is part of one from last week that I wanted to share. For no real apparent reason, I was getting ready to go to the Oscars with Zach Braff and Vince Vaughn. We were all wearing black tuxedos, but for some reason, I wanted to wear a red or pink boa because I wanted to stand out. I guess I was worried that people would not know who I am. Vince and Zach (it's my dream, we might as well be calling each other by our first names) were trying to convince me not to wear the boa. And that's all I remember about the dream. Anyone want to analyze the dream?

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Saturday Morning Ramblings

I haven't done this for a while, but here are some thoughts from the past few days:

- Willie Nelson must still owe a lot of money to the IRS. He has "collaborated" with Jessica Simpson to remake Nancy Sinatra's "These Boots Are Made for Walkin." He has also recently released a country/reggae fusion album. I hope he's also making good money for The Dukes of Hazzard movie.

- Dan already wrote about this yesterday, but the Penguins won the NHL (that's National Hockey League for everyone who was forgotten) lottery. They are going to draft Sidney Crosby, who apparently is the next Mario. It does seem odd that a potential superstar athlete is named Sidney.

- I woke up around 2:30am this morning/last night with a cramp in my left leg. What an awful feeling.

- Maybe related to getting the cramp is what I did last night. I (and my team) played its best ultimate frisbee game of the summer in a 15-8 win. I am finally getting into decent shape, which worked out well since the team didn't have many substitutes.

- After the game, I had dinner at one of the great restaurant chains in the country (and I'm being completely serious), Long John Silver's. There are only two Long John Silver's locations that I know about in Northern Virginia, and neither is close to where I work or live. Therefore, I only eat at LJS maybe once a year. I know that every time I eat there takes a few weeks off of my life, but the fish, hushpuppies and little fried pieces (of what I don't know) covered in vinegar is so good.

- I'm about 300 pages through Harry Potter. So far, very good!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Bobby Brown and the Dalai Lama

There really is nothing on TV. While flipping channels, I found Being Bobby Brown. I don't know why they were meeting, but it certainly looked accidental since they were meeting on the street. Naturally, the Dalai Lama had no clue who he was (although I'm sure if he heard his song from Ghostbusters 2, he would definitely know Bobby). Anyway, when Bobby Brown's guy realized that the Dalai Lama had no idea who he was, he started referring to Brown as Whitney Houston's husband. Very funny.

Empire Today

I really don't know much about the company, but they seem to be taking over the world. I thought they were just a local DC area company that does carpeting and windows. Then, I saw commercials for the company when I was in Pittsburgh and in San Diego. And I can't get the song from the commercial out of my head (singing: "800-588-2-300 Empire" person's voice: "Today"). This is the most catchy phone number since 867-5309. I don't remember a commercial being so and memorable (and a little annoying) since "Don't Say Olds, Say Bendick Olds" and Call Attorney Edgar Snyder at 391-2101, 391-2101.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

City Test

Here is a link where you determine where you should be living based on the importance of numerous factors. I must have done something wrong. #1 on my list is Long Island. No offense to my friend Christian or anyone else reading this who is from or lives in Long Island, but please shoot me if I am decide to move to Long Island. Rounding out the top 10 are:

Boston, San Francisco, Middlesex-Somerset-Hunterdon, NJ, Washington DC, Monmouth-Ocean, NJ, Danbury, CT, Bergen-Passaic, NJ, LA/Long Beach and Nashua, NH

Other notables: Pittsburgh was #13, San Diego #19 (behind Newark at #18?), Atlanta #64, Jacksonville #120, Las Vegas #156 and Columbus #220.
The last three...Enid, OK (#326), Gadsden, AL (327) and Pine Bluff, AR (328)

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

XBox Question

I've started seeing commercials for NCAA Football 2006. Since I'm still new to having an XBox and since I really like NCAA Football 2005, I'm trying to decide if it is worth buying the new version. For any XBox/PS2/Nintendo folks out there, do you buy the new games each year (like Madden 2004, 2005, etc.)? Do you know if there is anything really new and different about NCAA 2006?

Monday, July 18, 2005

Airplane Movie Reviews

No, this is not in reference to Airplane! and Airplane II: The Sequel, two very funny movies (particularly the first one) from the early 1980s. This is about my flight to and from San Diego last week and the fact that the two movies during the trip were Fever Pitch and Ice Princess.


(I put a few extra spaces here if you accidentally looked down.)

Let's just say, these are not the best movies ever made (like Airplane!). Ice Princess features Michelle Trachtenberg (from Buffy) as a high school physics nerd who becomes a great figure skater by figuring out scientific equations and formulas. She is able to qualify for the U.S. Nationals even though she has only skated in one competition prior to Sectionals, her coach tried to sabotage her, she asked the coach back, she finished 5th in the short program, then proceeded to fall very hard in the long program, stopped to stare at her mom for about 20 seconds in the middle of the routine and everyone in front of her seemed to do fine in their long program. Yet, all of this was more believable than Fever Pitch. In this movie, Jimmy Fallon decides to sell his season tickets for life near the end of Game 4 of the Red Sox-Yankees game, Drew Barrymore is able to buy two tickets from a scalper in the 8th inning of the game (what scalper is still around to sell tickets that late in the game?), drop down from outfield seats on to the field, elude two security guards by using Johnny Damon as a shield (Damon is perfectly calm even though someone who married Tom Green is running around him) and makes it all the way to the 1st base seats without getting caught by security. After 9-11 (even before 9-11), you would think that Fenway and Major League Baseball would have better security especially during a playoff game. The worst part is the book by Nick Hornby is great. The movie has nothing to do with the book. I hope that Hornby at least got a lot of money for this.


Sunday, July 17, 2005

More Harry Potter

Just for fun (and since I have several other books on hold), I went to the Fairfax County Public Library (FCPL) website to see where I would be on the list to check-out the new Harry Potter. Even though the library system has 323 copies throughout the 20 or so locations, my position in the holds queue is 1292! Both the number of copies and my number in the queue has to be a record for FCPL.

Just as a comparison, when I first reserved 1776 by David McCullough and A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby my position in the holds queue was approximately 150-175. I am currently #49 and #63 respectively. This should work out well since I'll have a few more books to read after Harry Potter.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Why Leave Out Tommy Maddox?

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and CBS Sportsline both reported a story in which a man is accused of impersonating Steelers quarterbacks Ben Roethlisberger and Brian St. Pierre so that women would go out with him. The Post-Gazette has a picture of Brian Jackson (the impersonator), Roethlisberger and St. Pierre. Jackson looks nothing like either Steelers QB.

My favorite part of the story is at the end of the CBS article. "When the woman did watch a Steelers game, she saw the real Brian St. Pierre on the screen and realized that Jackson was an impostor, police said. Jackson tried to explain to the woman that he looked "different" on TV, but she asked him not to contact her, police said."

I would love to have heard him explanation of how he looked "different" on TV. He looks heavier in football pads?

It's Here!

At 3:08 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, the mailman/letter carrier (what is the actual position title these days?) delivered the latest Harry Potter book. I hope that I'm not giving anything away, but the book is called "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" and the first word in Chapter One is "It." Maybe I have given something away since I just heard thunder and "it" is raining heavily here.

By the way, UPS can ignore my letter from earlier today. Somehow they pawned delivering the book on to the U.S. Postal Service. According to the UPS website, the book is still in transit.

Dear UPS:

Can you please deliver the Harry Potter book sometime soon? According to the tracking page of your website, the book has been in Chantilly, VA (only 20 minutes from here) since 9:56 A.M. yesterday and is "in transit to final destination." I know traffic around here is bad, but I know you can make it! I'll be here (or going to Costco, but my wife will be here) awaiting the delivery.


Harry Potter World

I'm sure that you either can't get enough Harry Potter coverage or you are ready for it to go away. I'm somewhere in between. While I am looking forward to Book 6 being delivered to my door sometime in the next 8-15 hours, I am worried that there is no possible way the book can live up to the hype.

Anyway, for all of the latest Harry Potter news, visit or, if you're living in Indonesia, this blog.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Dick Butkus

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported this week that Dick Butkus, one of the greatest linebackers in NFL history, will work as a football coach for the Pittsburgh-area Montour High School as part of a new ESPN reality show. The second article states that Butkus will actually be the head football coach. The coach who was hired by the school in January (not Butkus) said "For the purpose of the show, he's going to be the head coach," [Lou] Cerro said. "For the purpose of [reality], I mean -- well listen. Coach Butkus has not coached a down of football in his life."

I'm glad that Cerro stated that Butkus has never coached football. I'm sure we all remember his outstanding job as a basketball coach on the reality show Hang Time.

What do you mean that wasn't a reality show?

Thursday, July 14, 2005


Today was the first time I took Metro to work since the terrorist attacks in London. I didn't notice any extra security during either trip, but there seemed to be more people riding Metro both to work and back home than there has been in months. Same with the buses. I have no idea why. The shocking Metro event of the day was the posting on the electronic bulletin board saying that there were no reported elevator outages!!!!! (The exclamation points were on the bulletin board, not my reaction to this news.) Of course, escalators may have been out all over the place, but I'll be happy for the people who need to use elevators.

I'll have more about my San Diego trip including my thoughts on the airplane movies (Fever Pitch and The Ice Princess) tomorrow and/or over the weekend.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Back to Life, Back to Reality

Not only are these lyrics to a song by Soul II Soul, but it is a perfect description of how I am feeling. We had a wonderful time in San Diego, which I will write more about tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm going through mail and e-mail and preparing to go back to work. Tomorrow could be a very long day at work.

Thursday, July 07, 2005


I'm heading to San Diego Friday morning for a friend's wedding and a much needed vacation. It will actually be good timing since I really don't want to deal with the Washington area Metro the next few days after the tragedy in London.

I am not a security official and I am not going to play one here, but how can authorities stop terrorism in subways/public transportation? Britain has been hit in the past by IRA bombings, and we are not far-removed from the Madrid attack. It seems like it would be nearly impossible to stop a bombing in New York or Washington. Of course, I'm not going to stop using the Metro. It is the best way to get to and from work. I'm not sure where I'm going with this post. I probably need to go back to packing.

Book Request

With my old comments now gone, I lost the list of books suggested by some of you from a few months ago. I'm leaving for vacation tomorrow morning, and need a book or two to take on the trip. Please let me know if you have any suggestions. I am currently on hold for two books from the Fairfax County Library, Nick Hornby's new book and 1776 by David McCullough, but I'm around #100 for both. Thanks!

I Love Steelers Fans!

I feel bad that this guy died during the off-season. It seems like it would be more appropriate if he survived until training camp or maybe the Steelers bye week.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Should I See Dr. Melfi?

I was told over the weekend that I look like James Gandolfini. I'm not sure if I should take this as a complement or not. On one hand, I have more hair (although not by much) than Gandolfini, and I weigh significantly less. On the other hand, I was being compared to Tony Soprano! That's pretty cool.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Happy July 4th!

Besides fireworks and baseball, another July 4th tradition is the Nathan's Famous hot dog eating contest, which was shown by ESPN. Takeru Kobayashi (simply known as Kobayashi) won his fifth straight title by eating 49 hot dogs in 12 minutes. Just for fun, I made some notes from today’s contest.

ESPN had profiles of many of the competitors including Tim Janus, who wears face paint and calls himself “Eater X.” No, I’m not making this up. Janus is also the 2004 International Federation of Competitive Eating (IFOCE) Rookie of the Year. Again, I’m not making this up.

Sonya Thomas, who finished 2nd in this year’s contest with 37 hot dogs, lives in nearby Alexandria, Virginia. She weighs in at 105 pounds and once ate 65 Hard Boiled Eggs in 6 minutes, 40 seconds. Take that Paul Newman! She also ate 11 pounds of cheesecake in 9 minutes. Essentially, she ate 10% of her body weight in less than 10 minutes. That really doesn’t seem right, although it was cheesecake and not deep-fried asparagus. If you didn’t already know (and how could you not), Joey Chestnut, who I believe finished 3rd in the hot dog eating contest, is the world deep-fried asparagus-eating champion by eating 6.3 pounds in 11.5 minutes.

My favorite comment of the day had to be about 409-pound Cookie Jarvis. The announcers said that he is having a rebuilding year. How does one rebuild in competitive eating? Did he get a new intestine?

Anyway, Kobayashi (who was a great character in The Usual Suspects) was 4.5 hot dogs short of his record set at the 2004 hot dog eating contest. With about 30 seconds to go in the contest, the announcers were critical of Kobayashi saying that perhaps he partied too much in Midtown the night before. Of course, earlier in the telecast, the same announcers were comparing him to Tom Brady and Lance Armstrong. Oh, and he beat Thomas by 12 hot dogs.

Congratulations to the marketing people at Pepto-Bismol and Alka-Seltzer. Pepto-Bismol had several commercials during the ESPN telecast and later this month, is the Alka-Seltzer US Open of Competitive Eating.

Well, I’m getting ready for a BBQ and then to see some fireworks. I’m hoping to eat 2 hot dogs in 10-15 minutes!

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Do You Notice Anything Different?

I couldn't figure out how to get rid of the giant gap between the header and the text, so welcome to the new blog. The next challege will be trying to figure out if I can get the old comments back or if they are gone forever.

Live 8

I'm currently watching Live 8, the concert being performed in 10 cities around the world to raise awareness of poverty in Africa. I'm going to answer my only question, but why isn't the concert raising money to help the poverty in Africa? Live Aid raised over $40 million 20 years ago. I'm sure that Bob Geldof and the producers of the concert feel that it the responsibility of the 8 world leaders meeting next week for the G8 summit to combat poverty by dropping the debt and changing the trade laws for Africa. I certainly see their point, but wouldn't money raised by the concert help?

On to the concert itself. There was a video montage of children in Africa starving that was played at Live Aid. Bob Geldof brought one of the children featured in the video out on stage in London's concert. She just completed agricultural exams in Ethiopia and was there to show that fighting poverty in Africa is working. It was a very touching moment. Then, Madonna came out and hugged her and held her hand for the first 30 seconds of "Live a Prayer." At that point, the woman looked like she wanted to get off stage and Madonna was more than happy to have the limelight.

Some random thoughts about the concert:

- A-ha is performing in Berlin. Who knew they were still around? Are they practicing/auditioning for a spot on Hit Me Baby One More Time?

- VH1 and MTV showed Will Smith's performance of his new song "Switch." A little later, they showed only about 20 seconds of him performing "Summertime." What a great song; they should have showed his entire performance. It really wasn't necessary to see Good Charlotte in Tokyo.

- I saw that Yannick Noah is performing in Paris, and the name sounded really familiar. After doing some research, I saw Yannick Noah was a very good tennis player, who won the French Open (which is why I knew the name) and began a music career in 1993.

- Maybe not the most appropriate, but the VH1 airing of Live 8 is partially being brought to us by "War of the Worlds." I don't think the movie is a reference to the war against poverty.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Weekend Changes

Since I still haven't figured out how to fix the large gap between the headline and text, I'm probably going to change templates over the weekend. I just wanted to give everyone a heads up in case everything looks different the next time you visit.