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Showing posts from October, 2008

Dave would not approve

After months of yapping about a flat-screen TV, we finally broke down and bought one. A lovely, well-reviewed, 42", high-definition, plasma Panasonic model. When Brian, Jordan, and I picked it out at Sears last night, I said something like, "Meet your new little brother, Jordan."

Sure, we are pretty much in a recession, but I figured I should do my part in stimulating the economy and spreading my own wealth. Because we paid for it with gift cards purchased at Giant Eagle, our next two plus fill-ups will be free. And apparently buying Sears gift cards qualified us for $5 off our next order. How can you argue with that, the $200-off sale price, and three free months of an HD DVR receiver from Verizon FiOS?!

As I have been explaining to friends over the past few weeks, watching our 19" TV in bed has put a strain on my eyes. Most people's vision improves as they get older. Me? Not so much. I have really noticed my squinting when I try to read the guide on TV. And whe…

All over the place

That is where my thoughts are, all over the place.

I wanted to write a post about how the first time you do, see, or experience something is often the most memorable. A few weeks ago, I took Jordan to Reeger's farm near where my mom lives. If you happen to be in or around Indiana County and you have kids, this is a great place to spend a Saturday in October. From the hayride, to sliding down the silo, to climbing up the hay bales, to playing in the candy corn, to the corn maze, this place rocks. But, alas, it was not as good as it was the first time we went, last year. Part of the reason was because it was about 80 degrees and sunny, and I was wearing black (a Depeche Mode concert shirt from '93, another good first). But the other reason is, is that the corn maze was so cool the first year, that anything after just pales in comparison. Trying to find each of the clues and answer the questions got my competitive edge (mostly non-existent as of late) going.

And that got me thinkin…

My first political rally

Yesterday, I and a coworker went to a rally for John McCain. It started out with odd directions and multiple turns and exits thanks to "Beverly" (what I dubbed my coworker's navigation system). But once we got on a road behind a car with an Illinois license plate and a McCain sticker, we figured we were headed in the right direction. I joked that that person must have had it with Obama.
When we pulled into the parking lot designated "event parking," which was located a couple of blocks from the school, we saw dozens of cars with McCain bumper stickers. After we parked, we saw numerous people with McCain-Palin paraphernalia, and we followed them to the chartered bus. A far cry from the area of Pittsburgh where I live. The mood was pretty festive on the bus and waiting in line outside the building once we got off the bus. There were at least a dozen Obama supporters across from the entrance, but the crowds on both sides were civil.
Once inside, we tried to get as …

Dreams, Goals & Lists

That was the title of a presentation that a freelance photographer gave at a recent staff meeting where I work. He talked about wanting to go to NYC, to meet girls, maybe to be famous. Not sure which of those were dreams and which were goals. But as he was speaking, it occurred to me that I don't really have any dreams anymore. I don't mean that in a crushing sort of way; I know it certainly sounds a little sad or pathetic. And the reason I don't have dreams has little to do with that I think they won't come true, although I am a bit of a realistic and certainly cynical. Most of all, I am a slacker.

When I was in high school, I wanted, at least a little bit, to be an actress. I had the lead in my high school musical, so it did not seem so far-fetched. But once I got to PSU and tried out for some musicals and choral groups and did not make the first cut for anything, I gave that up. But the reality is, I am too much of a homebody to have been an actress. I would never li…

Let's go, State!

For once, I will be brief (don't get used to it). I just wanted to get in a quick post to celebrate Penn State's being number 3 in the country in the AP poll. I say, "JoePa," you say, "Terno." "JoePaTerno." They are looking pretty darn good. If they can end the season with a win in BCS Bowl, maybe JoePa can retire. And probably should. Wow, I never thought I would say that.

And Pitt is still in the top 25 (yes, Virginia, you CAN like both Pitt and Penn State).

The Steelers are sitting atop their division.

And I am in second place in my fantasy football league (though I may need Nate Kaeding of San Diego to kick six field goals to stay that way).

All is right in the world of football. Can I get an Amen?!

Guilt is a powerful motivator

In some ways, I feel as if my life is ruled by guilt. It is a sad way to be, really, as I find there are few things I do in life because I really want to.

I sing in my church choir during the school year, which involves a couple hours of practice during the week plus a few more on Sunday. I enjoy doing this, but it takes me away from my family, although I am mostly okay with this smallish commitment. On the other hand, my choir also has additional concerts, practices for those concerts, fundraisers, etc. I participate in the fundraisers because I feel guilty if I don't; I certainly wouldn't want someone to think I am not pulling my weight. Some extras I go to and feel bad because I am missing family time and other extras I skip and I feel bad because I think I am letting my small choir down.

I have been invited to countless things over the past few years. I go to as many as I can, because I don't want to let people down, particularly when it involves friends I don't see …

Ah, fall

Fall is my favorite season for a number of reasons. Football is a big one for me, obviously (I like hockey, but don't typically watch more than a period or two of any one game until the spring). Cooler temps is another, though I have to say when the temps turned colder the other day, I almost longed for summer.

When I was kid, I lived for summers. My family went to Ocean City, Maryland, pretty much every year until my senior year in high school. We would lie in the sun and swim in the ocean for hours. Now I hate to bake in the sun, the ocean water is usually too cold, and a bathing suit is my least favorite article of clothing, so it's no wonder summer and the beach no longer hold the allure they once did. And when you are a grown-up, you don't get your summers off anymore (unless you are a teacher).

Fall also means I shave my legs only twice a week! Believe me, this is an improvement over two years ago, when I shaved only once per week. I told myself the extra hair was help…