Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Don't worry...I'm still here

Sorry to go so long between posts. Work has been crazy-busy for the last week or so, which has kept me from blogging during the day (which I probably shouldn't be doing anyway). Then when I get home, assuming I'm not working more, I've been so drained that I can't bother myself to blog at night.

A lot has happened since my last post:
  • I finished the last book I was reading -- Double Play
  • We went to New Hampshire to visit Mike & Sharon -- and I took Nolan and their son, Simon, to see "The Polar Express"
  • World War III broke out at an NBA game
  • We finally launched the new WNYT.com (the source of so much of my frustration and exhaustion)
  • There was a little holiday called Thanksgiving
  • We became the cheesiest house on the street by putting up one of those inflatable Christmas characters on our lawn

And I'm sure there are other odds and ends I'm forgetting.

In much more serious news, Patrick is back in the hospital. His counts were low and he was running fever, so they admitted him Saturday night. He may have some sort of infection. He was bound to wind up back in the hospital at some point, but it is a huge bummer nonetheless (to put it mildly).

Anyway, I hope to get back into the swing of things with regular updates.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Hummer heist

Hummer heist under investigation
Four Hummer H2s were stolen from a car dealership in Colonie.

How in the world do you not notice you have four giant Hummers missing?!?

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Confetti craziness

Rip Taylor just made a cameo on "Will & Grace." Who even knew he was still alive?

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Falling with style

Disney Booting Up 'Toy Story 3'
Disney is planning to go ahead and make "Toy Story 3" without Pixar.

I totally side with Pixar in their rocky dealings with Disney. I love the first two "TS" movies, but I hope the third one flops.

I would hate to support Disney by buying a ticket to "TS3." However, the trouble will be trying to explain that to the kids...

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

To each their own

Nolan just called me on the phone to let me know he likes Shrek better than the Yankees.

“Ok,” I told him.  “That’s fine.”

On the front lines

Kevin Sites Blog
Kevin Sites apparently hasn't had a chance to update his blog since witnessing the shooting of an injured Iraqi insurgent by a U.S. Marine.

This story is getting huge play and shows signs of turning into the "second coming" of Abu Graib.

I worry that this incident might be taken out of context. Some people seem to almost laugh when they here the explanation that the Marine may have been acting in self defense. What threat could wounded guy pose?

Well he could pose quite a threat, since we're told many insurgents booby trap dead bodies and themselves. Was this guy actually faking being dead as the Marine thought? Did this Marine actually believe his life and the lives of others could be in jeopardy?

We may never know the answers to those questions. But Sites was there and saw it with his own eyes. So I'm anxious to see what he writes about it on his personal blog.

Pedro in pinstripes

Yankees mailbag: Friend or foe?
Jorge Posada says he would be able to bury the hatchet if Pedro Martinez winds up with the Yankees.

"I don't have anything against Pedro -- if he's my teammate. [If he signed in New York,] we're going to work things out, I'm going to catch him. This guy is a winner. He knows how to pitch. I'd have no problem of getting things straight and moving on. We're gentlemen here, we're adults. We can work things out." -- Jorge Posada

He's a better man than I. I just don't know if I want Pedro on the team -- I've invested so much in hating him over the years! :-)

Meanwhile, Posada is making the pitch to bring back another Martinez -- Tino. That would be a very welcome move.

Monday, November 15, 2004

CAUTION: Gasoline fumes may be hazardous

My tinkering with the snowblower Sunday may have done more harm the good.

Kris went to bed around 10 p.m. last night. I stayed up for another couple of hours, catching up on the latest episode of “Enterprise” that I taped over the weekend and reading my new book. I went to bed around midnight.

I remember being aware of Kris getting out of bed and assuming it must be 5:30 a.m. and she’s getting up to go for her run. I was too tired to actually roll over and look at the clock. However, the next thing I know, I hear Chester running up the stairs and he jumped up onto our bed (usually he would be sound asleep on his chair in our room – why was he downstairs?). Kris came in behind him and climbed into bed too. Was she skipping her run today?

Only then did I realize that it was only 1:30 a.m. I had only been in bed for a little more than an hour.

It seems Chester was acting funny. So Kris got up to let him out. He was still acting strange. So for some reason I figured I’d try taking him out myself to see what he does. All he did was try to eat grass – which always makes him sick. So I made him come back in.

Soon we figured out what may have been making him act weird. When I climbed back into bed, I realized that our room reeked of gasoline. In my delirious state, I thought it might all be in my head until Kris mentioned it too (our bedroom is right above the garage).

Our snowblower usually smells of gas after I use it. I usually have to leave the garage door open for a while to let it air out. I went down and checked the garage and sure enough, the gas smell would almost knock you over. I checked the snowblower and it was leaking – sitting in a big puddle of gasoline. I figured I’d fix it in the morning and tried to go back to bed.

But Kris was very worried about it (and rightly so – I was just too tired to think straight). So I went back downstairs and moved the snowblower outside. When I came in, Kris was preparing to sleep downstairs. She asked me if I cleaned up the puddle, which of course I hadn’t. So I trudged back into the garage, opened the door back up and started hosing the spot off. Then I mopped it up with some rags and tossed them outside with the snowblower.

When I came back in, Kris had gone back upstairs. She decided that with my going in and out, the downstairs now smelled worse. I climbed back into bed, and she said now she was worried about the snowblower leaking a puddle of gas on the driveway. I insisted that was no big deal and convinced her of such.

However, now I couldn’t get back to sleep (it was about 2 a.m. at this point). Despite my instance that it was no big deal, I went back downstairs – again – to go outside with a flashlight and try to stop the damn snowblower from leaking gas.

I stopped the leak, went back upstairs, crawled into bed…and then was informed that my clothes smelled. So I had to get back up again and change my clothes.

Finally, sometime after 2 a.m., I was able to get to sleep. Could a Monday get off to a worse start?

Weekend with the Rooneys

We had a pretty good weekend.

We spent Saturday morning cleaning up my mom’s yard. She now has mountains of leaves and pine needles in front of her house, waiting for the town to take them away. I’m really impressed with how much we raked up in a short amount of time. Kris is a fast leaf raker!

In the afternoon, Kris and Nolan went and volunteered at the Regional Food Bank. While they were packing up donated cleaning supplies for the needy, Thomas napped and I worked out in the driveway tuning up the old snowblower (!) for the season. Yes, it’s that time. Better to be safe than sorry.

Saturday night, we actually got out of the house without the kids. We determined that we haven’t been on a date since early September. So we figured we were due. My 13-year-old nephew came over to babysit for the first time and that worked out great. He came over and hung out at the house while we went out to dinner with our friends Scott & Carmella. We ate at Garcia’s – you know who much I love Mexican food – and then stopped at Starbuck’s for coffee afterward. It was a really nice evening. Hopefully we won’t wait more than two months before doing it again.

Sunday morning was the Stockadeathon – a 15K race through Schenectady. Normally, Kris probably would have run in this race, but she skipped it this year since it’s still a little soon after her marathon. Instead, we volunteered at it. With the kids as our assistants, we worked one of the parking lots – making sure no one pulled out in front of the runners (one jerk went right past me and cut a runner off).

Lunch was served for the volunteers at a nearby restaurant, owned by an old high school classmate of my brother’s.

Nolan was supposed to go to a birthday party in the afternoon, but he seemed to be coming down with a bit of a cold. So we kept him home. While he veged out on the couch in front “Shrek,” I tinkered with the snowblower some more. After his movie was done we played Chutes & Ladders and Don’t Spill the Beans until Thomas woke up from his nap.

That evening, Kris built a roaring fire in the fireplace. We ate dinner in the living room and watched the flames. We also made paper pirate hats from what was left of the Sunday paper and watched the kids run around in them. Then I read them "The Polar Express" (this was the third night in a row Nolan got this story before bed).

After the kids went to bed, Kris and I watched a movie. I rented “Shrek 2,” but purposely didn’t tell Nolan about it. Kris hadn’t seen it yet and wanted to watch it in peace. Nolan would get to see it on Monday.

So we had a very nice weekend. Too bad Monday got off to a rough start…

Don't forget your towel

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - A Yahoo! Movies Exclusive
The teaser trailer to "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" is being featured on Yahoo!

I read this classic scifi-comedy book by the late-great Douglas Adams when I was a kid and have been waiting 20 years for a movie version.

I never did read the later books in the series, although I do own copies of them. I may have to take a crak at them before the movie comes out.

Tom Hanks takes on Da Vinci Code

Tom Hanks Deciphers The Da Vinci Code

Oscar winner Tom Hanks will star as symbologist Robert Langdon in the move adaptation of Dan Brown's bestseller The Da Vinci Code.

If you're among the one or two people left who haven't read this book yet, you should check it out. It's a fast-paced adventure and its fun to unravel all of the clues as you go along.

I'm very anxious to see how it translates to the screen. I admit, Tom Hanks is not at all what I imagined when I was reading it, but I think he will do very well in the role anyway.

Meanwhile, I continue to groan every time I see an ad for Nicholas Cage's "National Treasure," which looks like a blatant Da Vinci ripoff.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Add WTEN to the list

"Saving Private Ryan" Pre-emptend on WTEN-TV
WTEN here in Albany is among the stations refusing to air "Saving Private Ryan" out of fear of the FCC.

This has been a difficult and agonizing decision for us. However, we have a responsibility to operate in accord with the law, and until the FCC or the courts clarify what the broadcast legal standards are for programs of this type, we will continue to be confronted with these difficult choices.

Brosnan plans sequel, but not to Bond

Brosnan back for a new AFFAIR
Pierce Brosnan is planning to make a sequel to "The Thomas Crown Affair."

I really enjoyed his remake of "Thomas Crown," although I must admit I never saw the original with Steve McQueen.

The new movie will be a remake itself of a movie called "The Topkapi Affair," although it will be adapted to fit the Crown character.

Reading withdrawl

I need a good book to read.

About a month ago, I read a fantastic page-turner called “Shadow Divers” that told the true story of these men who found a mysterious World War II U-boat sunken off the coast of New Jersey.  Not long before that I read a so-so thriller called “The Donor.” Before that, I jumped on the bandwagon with the rest of the country and read the excellent “Da Vinci Code.”

For the first time I can remember, I’m watching less TV.  There aren’t that many shows that hold my interest and make me tune in every week or tape it if I’m going to miss it.

So, I find myself longing for a new book to sink my teeth into.  I know, I know, my wife would tell me to finish one the books I already have (I’ve had a bad habit of starting books and not finishing them), but I’d rather try something new.  I can be fiction or non-fiction.  Anyone have any good suggestions?

Putting the 'F' in FCC

Some Stations Won't Show 'Private Ryan'
The FCC continues to have broadcasters scared silly.

Tonight, for the third year in a row, ABC will air "Saving Private Ryan" uncut and with limited commercial interuptions in honor of Veterans Day.

However, many ABC affiliates are reportedly planning to pre-empt the movie with local programming out of fears over represussions for broadcasting the film's harsh language and graphic (although realistic) violence. They're especially worried about the movies intense first half hour that will air during the so-called family hour at 8 p.m.

Again, this is all despite the fact the movie has already aired on ABC twice before.

Also see Lost Remote

Honoring America's heroes

I would just like to wish a happy Veterans Day to everyone who has ever served our country, and sincerly thank them for their service.

Dial '24' for action

This is pretty cool. Unfortunately, however, I won't be able to view it on my low-end cell phone...

MOBILE VERSION OF 24 - 20th Century Fox TV has approved production of a live-action version of the 24 TV series that will be produced exclusively for cell phone users. 24: Conspiracy will feature characters that are different from the 24 TV series on Fox and will unfold over 24 one-minute episodes. One episode will be downloaded to subscribers' phones every week. Vodafone will premiere the series in the UK January 30, in conjunction with the fourth-season premiere of 24 on SkyOne. It will arrive in the U.S. next spring or summer via Verizon.
From Magid Morning Facts

Monday, November 08, 2004

Damn Spam

No, I don’t want a rolex. Now leave me alone!

Back in business

I've been having lots of problems with blogger lately, which explains the lack of recent posts. But it looks like everything is back to normal now.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Mr. Popularity

It should be noted that Bush has taken 51% of the popular vote -- something, as we all remember, he did not do last time.

Even Clinton didn't take more than 50% when he was re-elected in 1996 (although he had Ross Perot to deal with).

It's over

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Associated Press has learned that Senator John Kerry has called President Bush to concede the race for the White House.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

I'm just glad this isn't going to drag on for weeks again. John Kerry did a good thing for the country this morning.

NBC is now reporting Kerry will deliver his consession speech in Boston at 1 p.m.

Election too close to call, but I'm calling it a night

It's 2 a.m. and I'm finally ready to leave work and head for home. Once again, I'm going home still not 100% sure who the next president will be -- but it seems rather unlikely Kerry will pull this one out.

We'll see what the morning brings.

Tom Brokaw and the NBC News folks are still on the air. I'll fight the temptation to watch more TV when I get home.

Not so fast

Kerry and his 10,000 lawyers are refusing to concede Ohio.

This is like deja vu all over again.


NBC News just called Ohio for Bush. Tim Russert and his handy-dandy marker board shows that Kerry will need to win every remaining state just to tie -- but he cannot win.

It's over -- four more years for Bush!

You had the Patriots. You had the Red Sox. You just can't win 'em all, Massachusetts!

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Repetitively redundant

What’s another way to say “hotly contested?” It seems like the phrase pops up in every election story tonight.

Democracy at work

I'll admit, there was one race in my district -- for county judge -- where I didn't know anything about either of the candidates. Usually, when in doubt, I go Republican (however, contrary to popular belief, I do not always vote GOP across the board).

But this time I had a different strategy. Nolan was with me in the voting booth. So I said, "Nolan, should I vote for the one with the bird or the one with the star?" He picked the one with the star. And so, Democrat Phil Mueller got my vote (he's currently losing to Republican Karen Drago).

Who is running for what?

With 30% of the precincts reporting, we can project that 70% of the voters still have no idea who Warren Redlich or Howard Mills are.

Large Lockhart

Is it just me or does Kerry advisor and former Clinton press secretary Joe Lockhart look fatter every time you see him on TV? I don't mean to be harsh, but come on!

T minus 1 minute

The polls are about to close in New York. Let the counting begin!

Three cheers for Jeter!

Jeter hauls in Gold Glove Award

Derek Jeter dives into the stands in to make an amazing catch. (Frank Franklin II/AP)

Here's one thing for Yankee fans to be excited about: team captain Derek Jeter won his first gold glove this year!

That amazing 12th inning dive into the stands in the July 1 game against the Red Sox alone probably won it for him. If you've been living under a rock or would just like to see it again (and again), see the link above.

Jeter becomes the first Yankee shortstop ever to win a gold glove. That gives the team at least one gold glove in every position over the team's history.

Busy night

I notice Blogger is hit or miss tonight. Sometimes this blog loads. Sometimes it doesn't. I tired e-mailing a post earlier today, but it never appeared.

I can't help but wonder if this is due to hight activity tonight as Election Day nears its climax. It will be interesting to see what sort of Web stats go along with the election.

Polls closed in Vermont

Kerry took Vermont. There's a shocker. Check out wnyt.com's links to MSNBC's exit poll data.

Stay tuned. The night is young!

Election Day...

...is finally here! Go vote!

I'll be putting in a long night tonight at work. I'll try to blog if I come across anything worth mentioning.