Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Spring Update

I've been busy in a boring/routine/nothing to write about way. I haven't even had a chance to watch this week's Sopranos or AI yet (they're on tape) so I can't wite about that.

I do have a brief update on the kids. Two Sunday's before Easter (which is what, 10 days ago, right?) we took the kids to the annual Quality Candy Factory Easter Tour.

Mainly you just walk around certain areas of the production line, watching the chocolate being made, and scoop up lots of free candy on the way.

The kids, like their Mom, love watching production machines at work (hence my wife's love for Mr. Roger's video tours).

The kids also posed with Mr. and Mrs. Easter Bunny. Parker had it all backwards - he cried when we tried to take him away from the Bunny!

Afterwards we went to look around the pet store (where YaYa is obsessed with watching me squirm around the disgusting rodent cages), and then on to dinner at a Mexican restaurant. The kids weren't the best by that point, but they've been worse - count on that!

* * *

Okay, some misc. pics:

Here's YaYa in her upcoming dance recital costume:

and here's here dancing along to Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat

Here's my two girls and one of YaYa friends meeting the Easter Bunny at a Breakfast with the Easter Bunny:

Here's the girls with their favorite stuffed animals

and a close up of the famous and so imaginatively named BROWN BEAR and WHITE BEAR

And some signs of spring:

Chalk angels of the kids on the sidewalk

the tulips my wife and I planted last fall are poking through just fine

and here's Parker Daniel, Maker of Trouble TM banging on the screen door to get out with his sisters:

More info to follow . . .

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Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Kurt Cobain


Today is the twelfth anniversary of the (estimated) death of Kurt Cobain. The tribute I wrote last year strikes me as a little too dramatic and formulaic in retrospect, but the sentiment holds true [and what I wrote in the comments sections is some writing I'm pretty proud of, imho]

It's been generating some comments lately, so feel free to give it a read if you like.

BTW - anybody else catch the recent news that Courtney has sold off a large share of the rights to Kurt's work? Always the opportunist . . look, let me be blunt: take a look at the website on the pic above, and tell me she didn't have something to do with his death. Maybe she didn't murder him, but she knows more than she's let on. Take a listen to the genuine (candid) audio tapes that reveal her duplicity and judge for yourself.

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Happy Birthday to My Mom!

I love you, and wish you the joy of celebrating many, many more. :)

Lost Post

Here's what I think happened: the writers took the one of the most popular internet rumours - that the whole island was a figment of Hurley's dementia - and decided to have some fun with it.

Then, snuck into it, was Henry's veiled reference to the island being supernatural and out of God's sight and that of the world.

My my, what to believe, what to believe . . .

Tuesday, April 4, 2006

American Idol Live Blog

What's up with Kenny Rogers? The guy looks nothing like he did in his heyday. Plastic surgery - as evidenced by Bruce Jenner - does nothing for a man.

Taylor was ok, and I think the judges were too harsh.

Mandissa was AWFUL . . . just awful. No energy, no strong vocal. Ick. Her worst performance. And speaking as honestly as only a fellow fat person can: please stop wearing tight blue jeans and sleeveless tops.Your arm looked like a flag in a strong wind.

Elliot - I don't know. Either none of these guys (so far) can do country, or Kenny Rogers is giving them bad advice. I thought the song sucked, and was as boring as any I've seen on Idol. Simon was right, it was hesitant, and Randy was dead wrong.

Paris - the best so far. Solid, confident, and no showboating. My favorite performance by Ms. Bennett. More proof that Simon knows his S**t, as he's dead on as usual.

Ace - a fine performance, if you overlook the heeby-jeebies Ace gives me.

Kellie - Look, if she's that dumb, people should pity her. If she plays at being dumb, people should despise her. The song was good, and should have been since this is 'her' genre, but enough America - blue eyed blondes shouldn't automatically get your vote.

Commercial break - Caesar salad burritos. More proof Taco Bell is a harbinger of our cultural decline.

Chris - oh, just give the guy the record deal already. Solid and smooth.

Katherine - truly a Danny Girl, curves and bumps in all the right places with a great smile too. Not that that's why I like her or anything. [cough]  A good performance.

Bucky - it was okay. The vocals were  on the weak side but at least I recognized the song.

Who goes home? If the universe wants to please me, Kellie or Ace. Realistically, probably Bucky, tho' based on this week alone I think Mandissa or Elliot should earn the fewest votes.

UPDATE: Mandissa got the boot, and it's a shame. Either she was suprisingly unpopular, or a lot of first time viewers judged on a sole performance.

Monday, April 3, 2006

XM

XM radio has now surpassed 6.5 million subscribers, and yours truly is one of 'em.

As I promised myself in a previous post, I'd committed to getting XM before the start of the baseball season. One, I love listening to games from Chicago (Sox and Cubs), hometown Brewers games, and the occasional Detroit or Minnesota game on the radio during the summer, so how could I turn down the chance to listen to EVERY single MLB broadcast? Two, even with the cost of the radio, it was a heck of a lot cheaper than expanding my cable service.

I'd asked for Radio Shack gift certificates for my bday to pick up the radio, but oopsie - Radio Shack only sells Sirius.

My bad.

I wound up getting it from Best Buy for $159 (originally $225, but it was on sale at Target and Best Buy matched the ad), and a monthly subscription for $12.

That hurt, but not too bad.

It took me forever to hook it up (okay, I never did manage to do it - my wife got it working) and I love it.

I love #4 (big band and 40's standards) and Ethel (grunge/alternative), and there's hundreds more to explore.

And as of Opening Day, Baseball.

Tonight I heard legendary Padres announcer Jerry Coleman for the first time, and got to hear Mike Piazza hit a home run in his first at-bat in a Padres uniform (#398).

Howabout that?

A Yankees game is just about to start . . . heaven. It's heaven.

 

Saturday, April 1, 2006

De-Construction

One of the landmarks of my youth were the Froedert Malt silos located on 43rd Street. Not that they were anything to write home about. If you've seen one gigantic concrete silo, you've seen 'em all. But I remember a time when driving past them meant you'd almost reached the old County Stadium or Woods Cemetary.

That was back when 43rd was the boonies, just a useless stretch of boulevard with just about nothing but the silos for scenery.

[anecdotal it might be, but the current state of the street is a poke in the eye to all those  who say public funding of stadiums benefits no one but the team. Since Miller Park went up the street now hosts a Target, dozens of restaurants, condos, and a score of stores.]

But the times they are a'changin. Froedert was bought out by one acronym or another (God forbid a company go by something more than initials) and the silos are going down.

Here's some pics of the action, just for S & giggles.

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