I've been really lazy in getting ready for this year's Tour de Cure. On my last bike ride I only went about 12 miles. I should have more miles under my belt by now.
I'm hoping I can still do the 50-mile route on June 10. But if I don't feel ready, then I guess I'll just do the 25-mile route.
I've also been slacking off in looking for donations. I only just go around to sending my e-mail message out to people today. I'm sure many of you received it. If you didn't, you can donate here. Thanks in advance!
So this is a first. Thomas is at a friend's house this afternoon and Nolan is staying home. Usually Thomas stays in the car while I'm walking Nolan into a friend's house, but today Nolan had to sit in the car. Wow! It's really hitting me lately how we're a family with 2 growing boys. The groceries just aren't lasting like they used to. No more diapers. And pretty soon we won't even have a car seat anymore. In September, Nolan will be in 2nd grade and Thomas will be pre-K 3 times a week. I'm sad in a way that the baby days are over. I wish we could add a girl to our clan. But I'm confident that our family is complete.
We've had less baseball games lately because of our community field day and this holiday weekend, but we've been filling in the time with practices and other stuff. Chris mentioned going to the USS Slater which we all enjoyed. We've been going to the YMCA a lot lately. Last week, Thomas and I went to see the Albany Symphony Orchestra give a Tiny Tots Concert with a friend. That was great and he was really overwhelmed by it. They introduced all the instruments and played classics that even Thomas recognized. We had Nolan's conference in school last week and he is doing just great. Other than needing to write more neatly, he's really excelling in math and reading. This week, we have 2 games and Thomas' end of the year show at preschool. Next weekend we are volunteering to help install the new playground at Nolan's school. And there is a picnic for his Cub Scout Pack in which we're in charge. So we are all getting sucked in to activities and having fun. Things are finishing up as June approaches and we are excited for the lazy days of summer-
In honor of Memorial Day weekend, we took a tour of the USS Slater this morning in Albany.
This was originally supposed to be a Cub Scout trip, but most of the families dropped out of the trip for one reason or another. So it wound being just us and one other family.
The Slater is a Destroyer Escort that hunted German U-boats in the North Atlantic during World War II.
In fact, it's the last WWII-era Destroyer Escort still afloat in the United States.
The Navy decommissioned the Slater in 1947. About four years later she was transferred to the Greek navy. Forty years after that the Greeks donated her to the Destroyer Escort Historical Museum. Over the next several years, volunteers -- mostly former sailors -- raised money and faithfully restored the Slater to her former glory. She's been on display in Albany for about 10 years now.
This was our first visit to the Slater. It's an amazing piece of history to have right in our neck of the woods.
I loved the season finale of "Heroes." It tied things up pretty well and left just enough loose ends to keep the show going.
But I'm left with one question (in inviso text in case you haven't watched the show yet)...
Couldn't Peter have just flown up in the air by himself? After all he absorbed Nathan's power way back at the beginning of the season. Why did he need Nathan to fly him up, up and away? Kris thinks maybe he can only use one power at a time and therefore couldn't fly while his radioactive juices were flowing. I don't know.
Anyway, this was still the best show of the 2006-2007 season. I can't wait to see what they come up with for "Volume Two."
Niska Day was pretty much a washout this year. But at least we were still able to march in the parade and stay relatively dry. It just sprinkled on and off.
This was the first time for Nolan (and Kris, Thomas and Chester) to march in the parade. We walked with the Cub Scouts and everyone had a great time.
I was very proud. I told Nolan and a few other people how I had marched in the first two Niska Day parades in 1981 and 82 with the Cub Scouts. Now here we were coming full circle.
We wandered around at the high school later in the day, equipped in our camping rain gear. The kids played some games, but it was really too wet for the rides or anything else.
I had hoped this would be the year I'd finally convince Nolan to go see the fireworks, but it was pouring last night. I could still hear the fireworks over our house, but I can't imagine there was much of a crowd there to see them.
Brian Williams pointed this out on the Daily Nightly. It's a transcript from the Rush Limbaugh Show dated May 17, detailing what happened when Rush went to dinner at an upscale steak house in New York and bumped into former President Bill Clinton.
What happened is that the two were very cordial with each other and shared some pleasant conversation.
Shocked? So were some die hard ditto-heads, apparently. Here's a quote from near the end of the transcript that you probably never would have imagined coming from Limbaugh:
You people need to relax out there, some of you. Not all of you are uptight about this. Some of you need to just lighten up out there.
Nolan's team played another baseball game last night.
It's really great to see how far these kids have come in a couple of years. They're starting to pay more attention to the game and are getting a much better feel for how to field the ball. It's fun to watch!
Here is a shot of Nolan in action taken by one of the other dads at last weekend's game...
I further indoctrinated the kids into the world of geekdom last weekend when we took part in the annual Free Comic Book Day festivities.
Free Comic Book Day is an event staged by the comic book industry on the first Saturday of May. They've been doing it for several years now. Marvel, DC and some other comic book companies all publish some books they're willing to give away for free on that day. It's all intended to get people into comic book shops and stir up more interest in the medium.
So I took the kids down to Electric City Comics--the shop where I purchased most of my collection over the years.
The guys in the shop let the kids each pick out two books. So Nolan got a Transformers book and a Sonic the Hedgehog comic. For Thomas it was Spider-Man and Justice League Unlimited.
We went for an enjoyable walk in the woods today. I can’t tell you exactly where we were, because we were letterboxing—a fun pastime we’ve taken up as a family—and I shouldn’t give away the secret location of the letterbox we were searching for today.
There’s just too much in this movie. It’s got three classic villains from the comic books. Any one of them could have carried the movie on their own as the single main bad guy. But instead they all get short changed to a degree—especially Venom. He’s one of the all-time top Spider-Man bad guys and yet he barely got any of the screen time he deserved.
And as if the three bad guys (Sandman and the second Green Goblin being the other two) weren’t enough, they also cram in Gwen Stacey (and her police captain father).
I also didn’t care for parts of the “Dark Peter Parker” storyline. This was a deviation from the way the story of Spidey’s black, alien costume was handled in the comics. To me, it was reminiscent of the mid-1990s, around the time I stopped collecting comics, when storylines at the time resulted in the Spidey books becoming much too dark for their own good. The fun was sucked right out of Spider-Man then, and that’s what happened again in this movie.
Like I said, it wasn’t all bad. There were still some moments I liked and some parts that were fun. But overall this movie just tried too hard.
I loved the first two movies so much and was optimistic director Sam Raimi knew what he was doing and would pull this one off. Now I hope whoever does the inevitable “Spider-Man 4” takes a less is more approach delivers a much simpler story. I’m going to start the campaign now for the Lizard as the next featured villain.
SIDE NOTE: That shot above reminds me a lot of the cover of "Web of Spider-man #1." I wonder if that was intentional? If so, then well done. I always loved that cover.
It all started a few weeks ago when I took on the task of editing the end-of-the-year Cub Scout slide show for the annual Blue & Gold dinner. I guess in past years the slide show has been a relatively simple presentation. But I wanted to do something really cool.
However, that meant about four or five late nights, working on the computer until about 2 a.m. But it was all worth it. The seven-minute video turned out really nice and people seemed to enjoy it.
I finished the slide show just in time to spend another week of late nights working on getting the new WNYT.com ready. It launched this past Monday. But with less than a week to go to launch day there was still SO MUCH to do. Actually, there is still a lot left to do, but I got enough ready that we were comfortable launching it.
It will never feel completely finished, but that’s just me. It’s been almost three years since our last redesign and I never really stopped feeling like that site was a work in progress.
Anyway, after those two weeks I was just worn out. Then I got sick. I had a nasty cold for the past week.
Oh, and did I mention we’re also knee-deep in the baseball season? We usually have at least one practice a week and two games. And for the first couple of weeks (yes, those same two weeks I was putting in the late nights) our games were all on weeknights. That meant leaving work early despite how busy I was there. And so that meant even more working at home on those nights.
So now you know what I’ve been up to lately and why the blog sort of fell by the wayside.
I’ve fallen WAAAYYY behind on my RSS feeds too. The time was when I was practically addicted to Google Reader, checking my feeds almost constantly from the time I woke up until I went to bed at the end of the day. But these last few weeks I’d be lucky if I’d glance at the reader once. And then I’d usually feel so overwhelmed by the list of unread items that I wouldn’t know where to begin—so I wouldn’t.
Anyway, I hope that in the weeks to come things will settle down some and return to normal a little.
I haven't fallen off the face of the Earth. I've just been mega busy. I promise to get back into the habit of regular posting soon.
In meantime, I like to send out congratulations to my brother Tim who turned 50 earlier this week, my nephew Patrick who was crowned prom king last weekend, and my college classmate and fellow blogger Mike Sussman on the birth of his new daughter Darah Shea.