Saturday, December 31, 2011

No Resolutions

End of the year...time to reflect?  Not really.  Was it a great  It wasn't too bad, I don't ask for much.  Regrets...just waiting until yesterday to renew my car registration.  Yes, I've had the renewal for over a month, could have renewed online at any time...but didn't.   So as I stood outside in line with about 50 other people, we all asked each other why we were there.  My response was "because I'm an idiot."  Funny how people tend to agree all too quickly to a statement like that.

Did get back to a bunch of things that are enjoyable...I think I'll keep those to myself.  While making resolutions is pretty much a waste of those precious brain cells that seem to dwindle so easily lately, here are a couple of thoughts for the new year:

Laugh more...I tend to find joy in a lot of things, so this one could be difficult.
Drink might help with the laugh thing.
Suffer fools gladly...let me scratch that one right now.  ain't gonna happen,
Know when to back down...yeah, but then the jersey attitude comes out and I get up in your face.
Sleep well...maybe #2 will help with that
Accept who I am...already have and if you can't...not my  freakin' problem (see what I mean about the jersey attitude)

Live well, love better and remember...the joy's in the ride.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Sweet Emma

For Sarah,

We sometimes forget all spirits have but a brief time on this earth.  No one knows why some are shorter than others.  If there is a greater plan, I can't say.  What I do know is their memory lives in the hearts of everyone they have touched.

Until your broken heart mends, and I know how long that might take, find comfort in knowing those who love you will be there with super glue, hugs or the distance you need.  Let your heart be filled, knowing although Emma has left too soon, her life was saved and made wonderful by one simple act on your part.  You chose her to love forever...and you will.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

One More Christmas To Remember

I guess since this year I was a lot more naughty than nice, Santa bypassed my house.  The reindeer left some presents behind though. 

So, as usual, Christmas Eve was at Mom & Dad's.  With time passing, each year together becomes more precious.  Three years since her war with cancer, Mom still does almost the entire meal...without ever complaining about the aches, pains, fatigue and stiffness that make daily life such a joy. 

Dad's walk has slowed so much, a snail would beat him by a mile.  Breaks my heart to see a man once so agile, become a shadow about to fade away.  A man who at 80, fell off a second story roof (a story for another day) and only received a few bruises...thus earning the name "Spiderman" from the staff at the ER.  But the six years since have taken the spryness and left a tired soul.

The noise level at the table was as loud as I could remember, though most of the family thought last year was louder.  Last year they weren't quite as deaf, I say.  My family is one where we all think that what we have to say is priceless, so you better be louder than the person sitting next to you...if you want to be heard. 

Too quickly the moment is gone...leaving behind only the memory of one more Christmas where the food was great, the wine delicious and the family intact.  Santa, if you're listening...that's all I want for Christmas again next year.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Christmas Cookie Marathon: The Day After

So the cookie event began at 9:30 Saturday morning and I called it a day, one bottle of wine (that's my story and I'm sticking to it) and 9 1/2 hours later.  Seven different kinds of cookies, and I left the butter cookies until Sunday because I wasn't sure if my cookie press would hold didn't.

Sunday was my birthday and it started out well enough.  At 2:30 in the morning as I am sleepily walking to the bathroom, my significant other decides he wants to give me a birthday kiss...scared the shit out of me...but the thought was nice.

Walked the dog in the freezing cold...where was the significant other now you ask... sleeping with a bad foot...let's not go down that road right now.

As the morning progressed and I realized I would not be leaving the weekend house in time to get home for kickoff, I sent the "Other" and his friend home early with the dog.  I stayed behind to finish baking, do laundry, separate the cookies and clean the kitchen.  Happy Birthday to me.  Getting them out of the house, loading the cooler while baking..burned a batch of cookies, then the cookie shooter decided to give me a hard I killed it.  Put the sucker right out of my misery.  Go to plan B, buy a new one and finish the cookies during the week.

I need to test at least one cookie from every batch to be sure they are fit for consumption, so my caloric intake all day consisted of cookies and wine. 

Happy Birthday to me.  

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas Cookies: The Marathon Begins

It's time to bake the cookies. 

The joy of Christmas cookies is in the eating, not the baking. 

While it is fun to have a glass of wine or four while baking, it does tend to screw up the measuring process.  Having friends or family to help is also fun, but they tend to become bored after the second batch or so.  Then you end up in the kitchen...alone, with flour everywhere and an empty bottle of wine.  Luckily, that can be corrected.

This year, the plan is for at least 7 or 8 different types of cookies.  Tasty indeed, but exhausting to even think about.  After they are baked, they need to be separated into tins for friends and family...all those people who get to eat them without any work involved.  Nuts for this person, no nuts for that one.  It's like separating leftovers from a Thanksgiving dinner for traveling care packages...a giant pain in the ass.

However, everyone seems to enjoy them and so this weekend there will be cookie dough, sprinkles and chocolate chips in every grout line of my tile floor...along with a few empty wine bottles.

ho ho ho.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Dobie Gray: Find Peace and Drift Away

Dobie Gray passed away.

"give me the beat boys, and free my soul. i wanna get lost in your rock & roll...and drift away."

nothing better, nothing smoother. rest in peace.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Gets It Wrong...Again

Every year when the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame announces its inductees, I generally feel the need to vent. This year is no different. I mean...seriously WTF?

The two bands featuring women who definitely know the meaning of ROCK were denied entrance into the Hall. While Joan Jett & the Blackhearts were not the band I rushed to see back in the day, you cannot deny the influence they had. They made it acceptable to be a bad ass female musician.

But more than the Blackhearts fiasco, how do the Wilson sisters not be inducted? With a catalogue that is both extensive and insanely successful, Heart led the way with soaring vocals, some really memorable guitar licks and a great stage show. They "knocked down the wailin' wall," showing how much fun it was to be women rockers, able to stand up with any other band out there.

And, don't forget, these bands started rockin' when it was one big boy's club.

We all want to take the R&R Hall seriously, but every year it seems the joke is on us.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Enjoy The Party, But Help Others First

We've all been taught that it's better to give than to receive. But, it's even better to give and receive. has begun its second annual "Feed the hungry, then yourself." food drive, where donations are collected at holiday office parties. Economic conditions have left so many families dependent on the food pantry in their neighborhood for providing their basic needs, and while food banks do what they can, donations are at an all time low...all across the country.

While last year's food drive initiative was really successful, we are starting it a little earlier this year to encourage more companies and individuals to get involved. Here's how to help.

...Talk to your party coordinator about choosing a local food bank for the donations. Announce the food drive in the party invitation or an office email. Send another email the day of the party as a reminder.
...At the party, set an area aside where people can leave their donations. Have volunteers in place beforehand to remove the donations from the party, for delivery to the chosen food pantry.
...Animal shelters and pet pantries are also overwhelmed by the volume of pets given up by families no longer able to care for them. Collecting dog and cat food is another alternative to a food drive, especially if your company is animal friendly.
...Many communities are also in the process of collecting coats for those in need. Collecting warm winter coats, as well as gloves and hats is another way to incorporate a charitable act into a night of fun and celebration.
...Don't forget, charity begins at home. When hosting a Christmas or New Year's Party, encourage guests to bring food items which can be donated to food banks. Isn't that what the holiday spirit is all about?

So, in the next few days, we invite you to send this blog post to anyone and everyone you know. Let's make it go viral. If we can get even 10% of the people who read this to initiate a food drive at their holiday party, so many families will be helped by one small act of kindness.

SOCIAL NETWORKERS: Use Facebook and MySpace to spread the message:
Encourage your company to accept food items at your holiday party for donation to a local food pantry. Click on the link below for details.
"At Your Holiday Party, Feed The Hungry, Then Yourself ."

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

For my friend, with love

Every friendship is different. Some are light and easy...let's go out for a drink, laugh and enjoy each other's company, but not the type where you bare your soul. Some are more high maintenance, where one person has a drama filled life which they need to suck you into.

Then there are the ones which transend time and space. You know the ones where you might not speak to someone for months at a time, but can still pick up the phone and connect to where you were the last time you spoke. It's a deep bond, one of love and respect. It's a feeling of knowing that in a perfect world you would have more time for each other, but the world will never be perfect and life always seems to get in the way. I have a friend like that.

I write this today because her heart is breaking. She has lost a friend she loved to a tragic accident, and while in touch until the end, missed one last chance to connect with her. Mourn her loss, but take comfort in knowing through all the years, you were there for her. Her life was not easy, at times she was a lost soul. Yet, you always looked out for her, even protected her during her fragile moments.

I've always felt that true friends give what they can to each other. Sometimes friendship is defined by accepting the limitations that come with it. Accept what is offered and return what you can.

Except if you are ending a friendship, one moment in time never determines the relationship. It is built on the days, months and years that have bonded you together. T, find peace in that.

Go with God, Barbara.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Yankees Blow It

Can we not get a hit with runners in scoring position???? How can we strand 20, count 'em 20 runners. nuff said. Boy it's going to be a long off-season.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Red Sox Down in Flames: Come Get Some

As I fell asleep last night, the Yankees led Tampa 7-0, and the Red Sox and Baltimore were in a rain delay. Woke up a bit after midnight to see Tampa celebrating on the field. As I tried to wrap my foggy brain around what I was seeing, I came to realize the Yanks had blown the game..which normally would have really pissed me off.

However, last night was a night unlike all others. Indeed, Boston had again crashed and burned. Together with the Tampa win... well Red Sox Nation can go back to rooting for cry baby Tom Brady, as the Sox are stick-a-fork-in-em-DONE. It's a damn shame I say.

So I started the morning doing a jig in Papelbon's honor. While I have no delusion that Yankee pitching will hold up through 3 playoff series, the sheer joy derived from Boston failing to make the playoffs in such dramatic fashion, will be enough to sustain me through the off season.

Red Sox fans can go suck an egg. Playoffs baby!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

These are really the only choices we have?

I don't care which way your personal politics trend, do you really think either side has a really good (not even great) option?

This country is so screwed.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Yankees Clinch: The World As It Should Be

Yankees clinch the AL East. Jorge shows the true colors of a champion. A great moment, in a season of great moments for the three remaining members of the core four.

Playoffs Baby!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

9/11: Ten Years of Tears

It is now 10 years. For all the "time heals all wounds" logic, it doesn't. The images are still as vivid today, the horror has not diminished, the tears still come way too easily.

I recently heard an interview with Brian Williams of NBC, in which he was asked about the differences around the country, of how people moved on after 9/11. One instance he mentioned was how 3 months after the attack, someone in California told him "New Yorkers need to let it go... after all it's been 3 months. " Well now it's 10 years and for those who live in the NYC area, it is still very much... an unwanted presence.

So, for those who cannot imagine what we feel, here are some of the reasons why we cannot and choose not to let it go.

If you had ever taken a bus or car ride into the city from the east or west, the Twin Towers were visible. From September 11, 2001, for at least a month, the lower part of Manhattan was a cloud of smoke, obscuring the horrible reality of losing two of the largest buildings in the world. When the smoke finally cleared, the new skyline presented a void which made your stomach turn.

I remember the start of the news crawl at the bottom of the TV screen. This was something new and you could not turn your eyes away. Vividly, I recall a blurb that ran throughout the night. It was for employees and families of Cantor-Fitzgerald, directing them to meet at a hotel. It seemed to have a desperate tone, and later we would learn virtually the entire company was killed as a plane destroyed their offices.

There were the pictures of the lost posted everywhere in the downtown area. Posted by friends and relatives with haunted faces, desperately trying to hold onto the hope that their loved one would be one of the few to make it out of the towers alive.

The TV shots of all the medical workers outside the hospitals. All brave men and women who rushed to their ERs to assist with the injured. But there was no one to help. The towers did not give up many injured, nor did they easily give up the dead. Of of the 2823 people killed in the World Trade Center, only 291 bodies were pulled from the rubble. A little over 1100 remains have been identified. Most families were grateful to have even a finger of their loved one to bury. Just think about that for a minute.

Watching someone make a conscious choice of a quick death over slowly burning to death, is an image that will never be erased from those who saw it first hand. A friend who witnessed this cannot speak of it to this day, nor can he watch anything about the attacks.

Manhattan was closed. Except for the water ferry, no one who lived in New Jersey made it home that day. Even if you made it across the river, traffic was closed for miles into New Jersey. If you lived in the outer boroughs, you walked with thousands of others in a state of shock, but with comfort that you were not alone.

And the silence. Planes stopped flying for 3 days. Hearing a plane for the first time after they started flying was unnerving.

The first year commemoration brought the Tribute in Lights. For some reason, I had been in Manhattan and was driving back to Jersey after dark. Coming out of the Lincoln Tunnel there is a turn where the lights are visible. It looked like a path for all the lost souls to find their way to heaven.

And that is why we will never forget.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

We Can All Do Something

The northeast is barely finished with Irene, and now New Orleans is battling another hurricane. To drive down streets which were completely submerged days before, and see the lives of the people who live there out in the street, discarded as trash, is heartbreaking to the casual observer. To be the one who has discarded their possessions, one can only imagine their fear and despair.

Say a prayer, light a candle, volunteer to help or hold a hand.

But do something.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

An Earthquake, WTF?

An earthquake in Jersey. I may as well move to California. The weather is better.

Monday, August 22, 2011

What Time Is It?

Did you ever have a moment when you said to yourself, "something needs to change?" Had an attitude adjustment the other day, and feel like it's time to focus on some different things. For a while I haven't felt like I have been traveling the right road. Too many issues and baggage from lifetimes ago.

New day, new week, new me. Not growing older, growing wiser. We'll see what shakes.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Charlie Sheen? C'mon People It's Not WINNING

It took an unfathomable disaster in Japan to finally get Charlie Sheen off the least temporarily. How sad. The world has become a frenzied atmosphere in which being a celebrity somehow means they have something important to say, and we all need to survive by digesting every bit of minutia that spews from their mouths.

Thousands of people have died, hundreds of thousands are homeless, radiation is leaking at an alarming rate, and Charlie Sheen is selling tickets for a live show. And, he is selling them out. What in God's name can he possibly have to say that is worth spending cash on? Why not take that money and donate to the Red Cross or Salvation Army or any other charity you choose. It just makes sense that you will feel better about yourself after donating, than walking out of that theatre after listening to a lunatic.

Think about it.