"So Let it Be Written... So Let it Be Done"

The life and times of a real, down to earth, nice guy. A relocated New Englander formerly living somewhere north of Boston, but now soaking up the bright sun of southwestern central Florida (aka The Gulf Coast). Welcome to my blog world. Please leave it as clean as it was before you came. Thanks for visiting, BTW please leave a relevant comment so I know you were here. No blog spam, please. (c) MMV-MMXV Court Jester Productions & Bamford Communications

Monday, October 31, 2005

So, how did it go?



First, I want to let you know how much I appreciate your support and good wishes, because I do.

So now you're wondering how I'm doing, right? Well let me tell you the story.

Once upon a time, in a land far, far, away there was a man who lived in a castle with his two children.....

Oops, wrong story. Sorry. (I hate it when that happens.)

We, my mom and I, got to the hospital a little bit before noon and went to the surgical waiting room, as we were supposed to. I checked in and then we waited for an hour. I went up to the desk and they told me that the procedure had been moved to two o'clock instead of the 1:30 they had told me. Shortly after I was called in to the inside waiting room where I wore one of those well ventilated hospital jonnies. The nurse started talking to me and soon after another nurse came by to tell me that the doc was called to an emergency procedure at another local hospital and the wait could be from 1-3 extra hours. She also told me that I could reschedule if I didn't want to wait. I figured that since I was there and had arranged things at work and since my mom did as well that we would wait as long as we needed to. She agreed.

Earlier than expected, about 3:00 pm or so, the doc comes in and tells me that the hospital called him en-route to the emergency and told him that he didn't need to go. But he said that he would still be about an hour as there was someone in front of me who needed the same procedure. So we waited.

Somewhere around 4:00 pm the nurse comes in to hook me up to the IV. Then an anesthesiologist came by to see if I had any questions. Since it was near end of shift, a new nurse came on and wheeled me to an area closer to the O.R., since the room we were waiting in was now empty except for the nurse and us.

4:15 pm ish another anesthesiologist came by and introduced himself as the one who would hook me up. So he introduced a sedative into the IV (at 4:44 pm, according to my mom) and I was off into nothingness....

I woke up maybe 2 1/2 hours later, still in somewhat painful condition.

The doc had told my mom that he started the procedure but was unable to finish because the pathway leading from my kidney to the bladder got real narrow and he couldn't easily insert the tools he needed to finish the job, rather than force them up into me and risk causing unnecessary injury. What he did do was insert a stent into that pathway, which over the next week will open up the path needed to complete the procedure. He said this is not a totally uncommon problem. He did tell my mom that the previous procedure he did went without incident... (great!)

Either tomorrow or Wednesday the hospital will call me to a) see how I'm doing and b) reschedule the procedure for next week (hopefully next Monday or as earliest as they can).

So once I was fully awake I had the overwhelming urge to pee, but could not. How annoying is that??? (VERY)

After I felt better (a little bit) they released me to go home, at about 7:30 or so.

The pain that the stent is causing is no worse than the pain I've experienced so far, so medication should be able to lessen it. Though I have been able to pee since, it still feels like I need to go, badly. Right now, peeing causes a burning sensation and is rather red twinged.

Not fun.

So I'll be taking tomorrow off and should be able to go to work on limited duty for Wednesday.

I can't tell you what a pain in the side this whole thing is...

BTW Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Welcome back, Tedy



Getting ready to watch Sunday Night Football on ESPN. The Buffalo Bills come to Foxboro to play my New England Patriots. This is a must win game for the struggling World Champs, who are 3-3.

They get a lift by the return of #54 Tedy Bruschi (pronounced BREW-ski), who eight months ago suffered a mild stroke due to a hole in his heart. Surgery in March repaired the hole and he physically rehabbed to the piont where he could play for the first time this season.

There has been much speculation in the print and broadcast media about his return, whether his health can take the poounding that an NFL Linebacker takes during a game. In repeated interviews he has stated that all of the doctors he has visited, none told him he was medically at risk to return to the field. He was asked today by a reporter if the Patriots had asked him to sign a medical release waiver, in case he suffers another injury. Bruschi's answer was an emphatic and unhesitated NO.

He is, I think, in uncharted water as far as coming back from this kind of non sports related injury. Can he do it? If anyone can he can.

Do I agree with his decision to come back and play such a violent game? Sure. Obviously he doesn't feel it's a risk and I can only go by what he says, not having the detailed medical reports of the doctors. Also, I don't really think the team ownership and coaches would put him out on the field if they had any questions about his health. Of course he is at risk for injury as is any other player.

He has nothing to prove as a player, winning three Super Bowls. He loves the game, which is obvious by the passion that he brings to the game. Does the Patriots defense need him? Absolutely. Hey, I'm not judging you Tedy. Let's see how you do in tonight's game.

As a Patriots fan and a football fan in general, it's good to have you back.

Update: The Patriots came from behind to win, 21-16. Tedy Bruschi played most of the game for the defense. Not a bad first game back. Bring on the Colts a week from Monday.

---

On a side note, this will be my last post until after my surgery tomorrow. See you all on the other side.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Fall back



The 2005 USA edition of Daylight Savings Time is rapidly coming to a close, folks. Don't forget to turn your clocks back one hour before you go to sleep tonight. This is a bummer for me, because now it will be dark when I go to work and dark when I get out. Good thing I work near outside windows....

---

Just when I thought I wasn't going to have anything neat to post today. Then I got double teamed. Seriously.

I am spending/ have spent an enjoyable but surreal evening chatting IM style with Constant Rain and Zepplinlady. Sometimes one sometimes the other. Sometimes both at the same time. Both for over two hours, maybe longer.

Did we talk about anything serious? No, not really. Just small talk.

But it was nice to talk live to these, some of my blogger friends. It made an otherwise dull Saturday night fun. It was like a big cross country conference call:

I'm in Nashua, New Hampshire
Constant Rain is in Atlanta, Georgia
Zepplinlady is in St. Louis, Missouri

And we'll probably talk again....which will be good.

So thanks, ladies...

Friday, October 28, 2005

If you've got the money, I guess it's okay



I'm eating my lunch in the break room at work the other day, glancing at a copy of the October 3rd weekly "In Touch" magazine, sitting on the table in front of me. This is one of those Hollywood celebrity dish & gossip magazines. Flipping through it, I saw a story that I found simply amazing. It was about the extra expenses that Britney Spears purchased for her trip to the hospital to have her baby (which she had on September 14th) at Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center. She stayed in room 5123 and took over the entire fifth floor of The BirthPlace.

Check out what this magazine esimated that she spent:

$40,000 on eight rooms in the hospital. A $3,000 room for herself plus seven other rooms at $1,500 each for family and friends to use.

$100,000 on a 40 guard around the clock security detail and a police escort to the hospital.

$30,000 for room service meals for herself and guests at any time.

$5,000 for a photographer to take the baby's first official photo.

$6,000 for two nurses and a lactation consultant to teach the princess how to breast feed the kid.

$7,200 for a professional chef to cook meals for the princess and hubby in a private kitchen.

Can you believe that? Isn't there a better way to spend your money, Britney? Did you happen to donate some of your wad to help victioms of Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma, who are from your home state? I hope you did...

---

Another tidbit from this same magazine reports that George W. Bushwhacker scribbled a note to Condi during a recent UN session. The note asked if it were possible if he could take a trip to the loo. The magazine hired Paul Sassi, a handwriting analyst who said that the president's printing shows that he's a take charge leader. He writes: "His large block printing indicates the clarity to state what he really wants. The capital I shows an independent ego and the self-motivation to take action in a crisis - even when it's his own bathroom break."

Take what you will from the handwriting experts' comments...

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Alias 5.5: Out of the Box



Renee Rienne steals a chemical from an army storage depot in Frankfurt while Jack meets Sloane in a restaurant. Sloane asks to be reinstated in APO so he can find a cure for Nadia, Jack says he's already made the request but a senator is blocking the request.

In Marseilles, Rienne administers the chemical to a man who's been cryogenically frozen. At the APO office, Dixon reports that the chemical is Atropine ZX, an experimental substance used to resuscitate gravely injured soldiers. The thief, who he's identified as Rienne by way of video footage, had also stolen the frozen body from DSR. As Syd volunteers to speak to her, Jack privately asks Tom to keep an eye on Renee.

Syd and Tom meet Renee in Marseilles and return to her loft, where the now revived but disoriented man surprises them. He holds a knife to Renee's throat. They realize that the man is Luc Goursaud, Renee's father, and calm him down. Luc reveals that it was Aldo Desantis who had frozen him. Before he can speak about Prophet Five, Luc has a seizure and slips into unconsciousness.

Gordon Dean approaches Sloane and reveals the identity of Senator Lewis, who is refusing his reinstatement. At Dean's suggestion, Sloane wins his reinstatement by threatening the senator's child.

Jack gives Tom and Syd the name of a doctor they could bring Luc to. Overhearing the name "Desantis," Rachel remembers that, while working for Dean, she had stored files on Desantis in a San Francisco facility. Mercenaries converge on Renee's loft and pump gas into the vents. Tom makes his way out and plants a bomb in their van. In a flashback, Renee recalls that her father had once worked for Desantis, but they had become enemies.

Meanwhile, Dixon and Rachel go to the San Francisco facility and ask to be shown a storeroom, where they leave a case. Marshall's latest invention crawls out of the case: a spider robot with a tomographic camera. Marshall controls the device from a remote location, directing the spider to find and scan Desantis' files. Later, they learn that the documents detailed the manipulation of genetic and neural pathways. They also discover that the brain scans of Luc Goursaud and the man in the cryogenic chamber were not the same.

Tom returns to the loft and finds a beacon in Luc's cryogenic chamber. He and Renee use the beacon to alert APO. Syd learns about the beacon through Luc and discovers that he had guided the mercenaries to the loft. His cover blown, Luc takes Syd hostage. When Renee and Tom return, they realize that Luc is not Renee's father. Suddenly, the building is blown apart and a helicopter picks up Luc.

Later, in a North Korea hospital, Gordon Dean meets man formerly known as Luc, referring to him as "Doctor Desantis." Desantis reports that the "woman" is now calling herself "Renee Rienne" and that she's working with the CIA. Dean assures Desantis that keeping an eye on her won't be a problem.

Sloane, his clearance granted, walks down the halls of the APO office.

*** Next week there is no Alias on. The next episode will be Nov. 10, according to ABC.com

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Follow the instructions



About an hour or so before I was to leave work today a nurse from the hospital called me to give me the low down on what I must do prior to surgery.

I'm writing this for your benefit: curiosity - and mine: forgetfulness and a pile of papers on my desk (in case I lose my notes).

I spoke to Joanne about my surgery on Monday, October 31, 2005 @ 1:30 PM EST.

Location: Southern New Hampshire Regional Medical Center, Nashua, NH.
Go to second floor of hospital where the sign says SURGICAL WAITING & REGISTRATION

Do not eat or drink ANYTHING after midnight on Oct. 30.

I need to arrive 90 minutes before the procedure.

I can't wear any metal jewelry

I shouldn't bring any valuables.

I need to wear loose fitting clothing, like sweats, t-shirt and jacket.

The procedure will take about one hour.

Post anesthesia recovery time 90 minutes to three hours, depending on the type and amount of anesthesia needed.

Someone should drive me there and be there when it's done. (Thanks, Mom)

Someone should stay with me (at home) the night following the surgery (just in case). Any volunteers? (Thanks again, Mom)

I should be a little sore the next day, but overall I should be fine.

(I'm using that previously mentioned floating holiday on Tuesday next to make sure I'm OK.)

(Back to the regularly scheduled program (work) on Wednesday.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

ALIAS 4th Season - available NOW



Alias season four came out today in a nice 6 DVD set. I went to the store to buy it after work and paid $47.64 for it. Naturally, when I got home I looked up the same thing on Amazon.com and found that they are selling it for $38.99. So I bought it. I'll be returning the other copy to the store in the next few days. Why pay $8.65 more for the same thing if I don't have to?

If you haven't guessed already, I'm a huge Alias fan. I can't tell you people enough how really cool this show is, and how much I recommend it to you for your viewing pleasure. It is the only non-sports show I watch on television regularly without missing an episode. If you know me, that's saying a lot.

---

I was very disappointed in my kids this weekend. I bought for them (well, for me too) the first season of the Muppet Show, which aired originally in 1976. I also bought the 30th Anniversary DVD of SchoolHouse ROCK! with all 46 cartoons on it. You remember those great animated shorts that actually "make learning fun" and "knowledge is power". Conjunction-junction-what's-your-function... I can still hum the tune in my head.

Still both are great wholesome kiddie fare, despite the age of the programs. They didn't like it, and my daughter V was very vocal about that fact. Though I made her watch it a little bit of the Muppet Show, because there's one television here and I am the dad of course. So if I want to watch something, so be it.

Plus, one can only deal with the garbage airing on the Cartoon Network most of the time. They repeat the shows OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN, anyway. I can't tell you how many times I've seen episodes of Ed, Edd and Eddie - which is by far the dumbest cartoon ever made, or close to it as I can tell. Though Pokemon, Yu-gi-oh, Naruto and Duelmasters are right up there, too.

In all fairness, most of the time they can watch whatever they like when they are with me, except for football time on Sunday afternoons from September-January. Yes, they generally watch CN or PBS or possibly one of the animated movies I own.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Happy 6th Birthday, M



Today my son M turned six. I can't believe that my youngest child is six. Wow. I'll never forget the day you were born. The day God blessed me by bringing you into my life. Happy Birthday buddy.

I'll also remember that day because the Patriots snapped an 11 game losing streak vs. the Denver Broncos earlier on that day. It was events surrounding that game which sparked the argument between my ex and I that was a major catalyst in bringing about the end of our marriage. Of course there were many other things that helped things along, such things that would take four and a half years to fully develop before the end would come. But come it did.

----

And now, back to the regularly scheduled blog post.

----

I don't know how she did it but she found me. And she's following me...

She left her first (hopefully first of many) comment(s) on my blog. The last three blogs I've read from my regular list have also featured a comment left by her.

Aside from the fact that her blog is good reading, this has prompted me to add a link to her blog from mine. She also lives in one of my favorite parts of the country. Doesn't hurt that she's cute, too. And a Christian to boot. Too bad for me she's so much younger than myself and seeing someone else. ;>)

Welcome nunzia to my world. I hope you will come back and be amused by my life. I know I am.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

The Grand Illusion


Welcome to the grand illusion
Come on in and see what’s happening
Pay the price, get your tickets for the show
The stage is set, the band starts playing
Suddenly your heart is pounding
Wishing secretly you were a star.

But don’t be fooled by the radio
The tv or the magazines
They show you photographs of how your life should be
But they’re just someone else’s fantasy
So if you think your life is complete confusion
Because you never win the game
Just remember that it’s a grand illusion
And deep inside we’re all the same.
We’re all the same...

So if you think your life is complete confusion
Because your neighbors got it made
Just remember that it’s a grand illusion
And deep inside we’re all the same.
We’re all the same...

America spells competition, join us in our blind ambition
Get yourself a brand new motor car
Someday soon we’ll stop to ponder what on earth’s this spell we’re under
We made the grade and still we wonder who the hell we are

(c) 1977 Styx, A&M Records, Inc.


Still one of my favorite tunes after all of these years.

In a college English class (a lifetime ago, it seems) one of the assignments we had was to analyze a poem or song lyrics. I forget exactly what I wrote regarding this tune but I remember using this for my assignment. My friend G and I took this class together and had a fierce competition the whole semester on who would get the better grade. Made us both work really hard in the class.

Aside from the fact that the teacher, one Dr. Quinn, looked exactly like Bruce Wayne, er Adam West. At the end of the semester we gave him a line from the show and asked him to say it, which of course he did and still sounded like Adam West. Though he denied knowing who Adam West is/was.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Like a surgeon



Well folks, it'll be surgery for me for sure. That's the good news. The bad news is I have to feel the pain for another week before I can have "the procedure."

ETA Monday October 31, 2005 @ 1:30 PM, Southern New Hampshire Regional Medical Center, Nashua, NH. I must get there about 90 minutes beforehand to (I guess) fill out some paperwork or whatever you do. Someone will call me sometime this week to tell me what I need to do to prepare for the big day.

Let me tell you, it can't come soon enough.

---

Today I drove up to the ex's house for my son's birthday party. A few kids came from his kindegarten class. He got some cool toys, a few movies.... and lots of Pokemon cards.

Can someone please explain this Pokemon phenomena to me? I don't get it. What's the big deal?

No, wait. On second thought, I don't want to know. Nevermind.

Friday, October 21, 2005

This guy is crazy

Here's another rediculous sports related story that I saw online yesterday:


Felon gets longer sentence to match Bird jersey
Associated Press


OKLAHOMA CITY -- A man got a prison term longer than prosecutors and defense attorneys had agreed to because of Larry Bird.

The lawyers reached a plea agreement Tuesday for a 30-year term for a man accused of shooting with an intent to kill and robbery. But Eric James Torpy wanted his prison term to match Bird's jersey number 33.

"He said if he was going to go down, he was going to go down in Larry Bird's jersey," Oklahoma County District Judge Ray Elliott said Wednesday. "We accommodated his request and he was just as happy as he could be.

"I've never seen anything like this in 26 years in the courthouse. But, I know the DA is happy about it."

If you don't believe me, click here.

Larry Bird played for the Boston Celtics from 1979-1992. The man hasn't played professional basketball in 13 years!!! As I've said before, I'm a sports fan but this is carrying fandom a bit too far.

Some things are just too bizarro to make up, y'know?

Enjoy the extra three years in jail ya nutjob.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Alias 5.4: Mockingbird



Wearing a glitzy outfit, Sydney emerges from a sleek car in Monte Carlo and hands her key to Tom, dressed as the valet. She goes inside the casino and starts attracting attention with her boisterous behavior and consecutive wins. Meanwhile, Tom drives the car to the basement and picks the lock of a maintenance station.

With a big crowd, Dixon accuses Sydney of cheating. After the casino guards bring her in the office, Syd shoots them with a tranquilizer and goes to the office vault. With a laser cutter and the key code that Tom relayed through her earpiece, Sydney retrieves a laptop and drives away.

As she passes by a shipyard, she is stopped by a policeman and is boxed in by another vehicle. Suddenly, a shipping crane with a large magnet grabs her entire car and Syd is lifted hundreds of feet off the ground. She gets a phone call from Gordon Dean saying he wants Mockingbird back.

In the APO office 72 hours earlier, Rachel shares her guilt with Sydney on getting her coworkers killed. When Sydney urges her to rest and points out that it is Gordon Dean's fault, Rachel insisted on finishing her report on Dean. Syd then asks Rachel what "Mockingbird" is as written in some of her reports, and Rachel replies that it's her call sign.

At an industrial office, Gordon Dean tasks a man named Keach with an assignment. After, Peyton approaches Dean and mentions that they need money for an account transfer so they can rebuild their offices. Dean types in his password.

Waiting in the APO office, Marshall announces that he has been monitoring Dean's accounts based on Rachel's intel, and recently, Dean had liquidated all his finances and stored them all in one account. Rachel shares that the account is Dean's fail safe account in Cayman Islands, and that since she built it, she had made it a trap-door account. The only way to access it is to be at the bank and go through Dean's protocol questions. The answers are in Dean's servers in the Prague office -which has been destroyed.

Later, Syd asks Rachel to go with her to Prague. Using Marshall's recovery software, they can reconstruct protocols and help Dixon and Tom with getting into Dean's account before traces of Dean disappear once again. Rachel adamantly refuses.

In a Federal Building, Sloane sits in front of Boyd Harkin, Special Prosecutor to Sloane's case. Unsympathetic and determined to punish Sloane, he lists Sloane's criminal activities, and expresses his disbelief on the pardon agreements that Sloane had gotten in the past. Sloane admits to his wrongdoings and promises that he is reformed. Later, Sloane is approached in his cell by Keach. Keach says that he has benefactors who can help Sloane. He considers this offer.

With their Czech Intelligence Badges, Sydney and Rachel enter Dean's Prague office and heads to the servers. In spite of Rachel's anxiety and difficult flashbacks, they find the hard drive amidst the debris and was able to plug it into the laptop. Rachel starts hacking.

Dixon and Tom sit at a beach in Cayman Islands and were approached by the bank's emissary, Pierpont, earlier than expected. After Dixon alerts Sydney of the sudden change, they go into a cabana where Dixon and Tom is seated. With the guards' pistols aimed at Dixon and Tom, Pierpont starts asking them a series of questions. As Dixon subtly relays the questions through his earpiece, Syd and Rachel supply answers from Prague with the data they are slowly recovering. Despite a setback, Dixon was able to withdraw all of Dean's finances.

At this moment, Dean and Peyton realize that they have been cleaned out. As they conclude that Rachel is the only person who could have done this, they make plans to get her back.

At the APO office, Dixon reports that because of the recent events, Echelon was able to intercept a call revealing a location where Dean stores one of his operation archives. With the blueprints in front of them, they realize that they need to retrieve the archive from an electromagnetic deposit box system. When Dixon mentions that the mainframe resets passwords daily, Rachel blurts out that she can get around it by decrypting the building's network. With determination to destroy Gordon Dean, she volunteers for this next assignment.

At Monte Carlo, after Sydney heads to the casino and Tom brings the car to the basement, he pops the trunk and Rachel goes with him to the maintenance station. Rachel decrypts the algorithm and passes the code to Tom who relayed it to Sydney. She goes back in the trunk and Sydney drives off.

With her entire car hanging from the crane, Syd speaks to Dean on the phone who is demanding that Mockingbird be delivered in 30 minutes. As Dixon attempts to rescue them, a camera captures their presence and the car plummets 20 feet. Talking Rachel through this predicament, Syd asks Rachel to call Dean to confirm that she is on her way. As Dean listens, he hears a foghorn in the background, revealing Rachel's actual location. In a flash, Syd tells Rachel to kick the trunk, and grabbing Rachel by her arm, Syd uses her laser cutter to attach herself to the magnet -a split second before the car crashes to the ground.

At the hearing, Sloane stands in front of Harkin, awaiting his sentence. Sloane surprisingly gets pardoned and is released from the federal penitentiary. Jack looks at him suspiciously.

On the plane ride home, Sydney tells Rachel that they can't release her until Dean is brought in -and everyone involved. Rachel sits back and realizes that her life is never going to be safe.

-----

Again the story was good, but as is always the case the episodes build on each other. There's still no way of knowing how the season will go. Next week's episode looks promising. Maybe I'm too wrapped up in the show to offer an unbiased opinion.

Oh well.

Doctor Doctor Give Me the News



So I went to see the doctors today. My primary care physician (PCP) needed to be in the loop. We talked about possible scenarios & how soon I could go back to work. He's willing to prescribe more medication if I feel like I need it.

The urologist took one look at the xrays and told me that there's about a 5% chance that I can pass that stone naturally. It's about 3mm x 5mm which doesn't seem to be that big. But it's a solid object in an area where there shouldn't be any solid objects, so even something that small is too big.

He recommended surgery and someone from his office will call me on Friday to set it up. Likely next week I'll have the procedure done, but will offer more details as I know them. He said it's a relatively simple procedure and should take about 45 minutes. He also said there would be minimal recovery time required as far as not missing more work than I have to. I'll be sore for sure because this has caused some swelling of my left kidney.

He also told me its like laser surgery. They put a small camera inside of me and locate the stone, then use some kind of laser to blast it into smaller pieces. He was a young doctor and he mentioned something about it being like a video game for him.

Oddly enough that didn't bother me. If the doc were older and not of the video game generation it might have bothered me more. The doc didn't look to be much older than me. I knew all of those years playing Atari and Nintendo would come in handy... for someone.

Powerball Jackpot & World Series Prediction



So there was one winner last night in the big $340,000,000 Powerball drawing or whatever the amount was. The downer is that due to other issues I didn't have an opportunity to buy any tickets. The upside is that I saved $4 or so because I probably wouldn't have come close to winning again last night, either.

---

How about those Astros?

We now have a World Series that features a team, the Houston Astros, that is making it's first ever trip to the big show and a team that hasn't been there since 1959, let alone won it since 1917 in the Chicago White Sox. I mean this is before the whole "Black Sox" scandal thing involving eight White Sox players including "Shoeless" Joe Jackson. The film "Eight Men Out" is an excellent story about this bit of baseball history, if you are interested.

The streak of futility for the White Sox is much worse than that of my Red Sox. Before 2004, the Red Sox hadn't won it since 1918. But at least they had four World Series appearaces (1967, 1975, 1986 & 2004, losing in 7 games in the first three and winning it in a sweep last autumn) since the last White Sox team made it.

My prediction is that it will be a close series, with excellent pitching on both sides, but I think the White Sox will win in seven games. Realistically though I don't care who wins, since I'm not a fan of either team.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Romancing the Stone



Let me tell you about my interesting early morning activities.

As I wrote in the last entry, yesterday I was feeling pain in my left lower abdomen. I thought it was gas so I forced myself out to buy some gas relief medicine. After taking it and some aleve I felt a little better, but I still went to bed early (for me) at 10 PM. No problem. I fell asleep quickly.

At 1:30 AM I got up to pee and when I went to lay down again - WHOOO HA - major pain in the same area. So as I lie there wondering what the &^*(&^*(## was going on, trying to decide if I should ignore the pain and go back to sleep or get dressed and drive myself to the ER.

I dislike hospitals as a general rule but since this was not the first time I felt this way I decided to go to the hospital. This at 2 AM this morning.

So I sat down with the triage nurse and told her what the problem was. She dutifully took my information and told me they'd call when there was a room available in the ER.

Ten minutes later I'm sitting on a stretcher in a curtained off section of the ER in one of those air contitioned hospital jonnies.

After giving four vials of blood and a half pint of urine, a nurse or aide took me down a long corridor to the x-ray room where two pictures were taken.

Once back in my "room" in the ER, it was not long afterwards that the doc came in and told me what I and the triage nurse had suspected. I am the (not so proud) owner of a kidney stone, urine cups, filters and three perscriptions for pain medication. YEEE HAAAAAW

If I can't pass it through my system in the next few days, I'll be looking forward to my first surgery in 36 years to have the stone removed.

So a total of three hours later I get back to my apartment, wide awake. I emailed my boss at work to give him the reason why I won't be at work today or tomorrow. Though I'll know better once I see my regular doc and a Urologist tomorrow what the best course of action will be.

If this weren't bad enough, I got up this morning to get my prescriptions filled and my car wouldn't start. AAA came and tried to jump it but the problem he said was the fuel pump. So now I'm having it towed to the place I got the same problem fixed just about six months ago, because it's covered under warranty- 12 months or 12,000 miles.

Fortunately, my parents live close by and have another car that I can borrow, so I can get my medicine and get to my appointments tomorrow.

My Mom left work early this afternoon so she could take me to get my drugs. After we got back to the apartment we were talking and decided that she would take me to my appointments tomorrow. I'm taking percocet among other things and probably won't be in the best shape for driving, anyway.

Thanks, Mom

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Rumbly in my tumbly...or worse



I'll be darned if I know what I did to myself to cause so much pain. Whatever it is it hurts real bad. So much so that I'm having trouble concentrating on anything for too long.

Either I've got the fiercest gas cramps imaginable or I twisted a muscle in my stomach/kidney/intestine area. You know what I'm talking about when it feels like somebody kicks you real hard in that area. You could also compare it to someone twisting your insides around like you'd wring out a washcloth. If I did pull a muscle, I can't tell you when I did it. I really haven't done anything really strenuous in the last several days.

I just returned from the grocery store where I picked up some antacid/gas relief medicine. Took me awhile to get up enough energy to actually get out of the apartment to go.

I'm not looking for sympathy, just offering a reason for the shorter than normal post today.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Minor Blog Maintenance



You may or may not have noticed over the last few days that I have made a few subtle changes to my blog.

First, I've shortened my username from "green1969tb" to just "green". You can now email me from the link on my profile. It's not my regular email address, so I've got to get into the habit of checking it. Bear with me.

I've added sections to show what I'm reading at the moment, what movies I've recently watched and My recommendations. Click on the title of each book/movie to learn more.

Links have been added for a few more blogs I've stumbled upon that are promising or to ones that I read regularly but have been meaning to add links for awhile but just never got around to it.

I've separated the blog links from other web sites I visit, with more to follow.

I've also added a counter so I can see what kind of traffic my blog generates.

What I'd like to know but haven't figured out yet is how to add pictures. I'd appreciate any suggestions.

Also, I'd like to change the font, font size & possibly the font color but have been afraid of totally screwing up the html code for the rest of the blog to do so. Again suggestions are welcome.

What was she thinking?



Can someone tell me, please, what that big bright yellow orange thing with all of the blue around it is? And those white puffy cotton ball like things floating around amid the blueness? I've seen it now for the last day and a half and it's really...bright.

My kids stayed here overnight last night, which was a first, considering they have school today. My ex works nearby and was just getting off of her shift, so we decided it would be easier for both of us if she swung by to pick them up before heading home. This shouldn't be a problem time wise, since their school doesnt start until around 8:30 am or so. All I had to do was get them up and ready - dressed, fed etc. Then I could go back to bed for awhile, which I did. I slept until 10:40 AM.

My only errands of the day were to go to the post office and grocery store.

Now I'm not normally this observant, nor am I a people watcher but I have to relate to you what I just witnessed.

While I was standing in line waiting to mail my small item, there was a woman who came in after I did. All I can say is WOW! And not in a good way, either.

She must have been in her late 40's or early 50's, maybe 5'9" or so. She was wearing a very short denim skirt with silvery white glitter on it with white stockings underneath black fishnet stockings. She was also wearing, on first glance what appeared to be over the knee boots with heels. Upon further examination they looked to be regular black 1/2 or 1 inch heels with some kind of black fabric stretched over the shoes and over her knees, perhaps six or seven inches below where the denim skirt ended. On the shoes/boot thing was also two parallel white strips on each leg, from heel to thigh - sort of like racing stripes.

She was also wearing this white half buttoned blouse with some kind of low cut sports bra or some such thing underneath, in an attempt to show cleavage. She had obviously bleached blonde shoulder length hair and her face and hands definitely showed the beginnings of wrinkles or the prune faced look of a long time smoker.

I'm pretty sure she wasn't a hooker because she had on her left hand a wedding band and gawdawful big rock to go with it.

This outfit might have been semi-attractive on a younger woman but not on this lady. All I could think of was OMG what was this lady thinking about when she got dressed this morning and what kind of impression was she trying make? Can you say "mid-life crisis"?

Fortunately the stop at the grocery store was uneventful....

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Amazing Grace



I almost used laziness as an excuse for staying home from church today, but I am glad I did not.

One of the songs we sung today was called "Amazing Grace" written by John Newton in 1779. This is probably one of the most well known hymns ever written. It is a very moving hymn, especially when over 300 (not an exact count) people are singing it together. Please take the time to listen to it by clicking here.

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found;
Was blind, but now I see.

’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved;
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares,
I have already come;
’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promised good to me,
His Word my hope secures;
He will my Shield and Portion be,
As long as life endures.

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease,
I shall possess, within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow,
The sun forbear to shine;
But God, Who called me here below,
Shall be forever mine.

When we’ve been there ten thousand years,
Bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we’d first begun.

My pastor today spoke on Acts 12:3-19, where Peter is miraculously freed from jail and a certain death by beheading, similar to what Herod did to James in verse 2, which I mentioned in the post from Sunday last..

It is interesting to note that there were sixteen guards watching Peter, rotating every three hours in four groups of four. Two would guard the door while the other two were shackled on either side of the prisoner. In the morning, when Peter was nowhere to be found, Herod ordered the guards put to death in the prisoners' place. Which is to say that these men were beheaded for letting their prisoner escape.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

$300,000,000 Powerball Jackpot



The winning number: 1 7 8 34 45 *15*

Drawn about 20 minutes ago.

As I predicted earlier today, I didn't even sniff a winning number in tonight's drawing. In fact I only had two correct numbers, one in each of the first two quickpicks that I bought. Now it will be interesting to see if anyone won tonight or if the prize will be rolled over until next Wednesday night's drawing. That will determine if I buy any tickets or not. I don't usually buy lottery tickets unless the prize is really big. Not that I couldn't use the base prize of $10 million, because I certainly could. Most of the time I've better things to spend my money on...

I've been robbed



I don't know when it happened or who did it.

When my kids and I were out doing errands this morning, I noticed that someone stole the hood ornament from my van. I suspect it was taken by one of the many kids who live in this apartment complex.

I'll be the first to admit that my van is old and on it's last legs. It looks crappy enough as it is, but now it looks worse. It wasn't even an exciting hood ornament. It was only the Dodge/Chrysler logo. I wonder how much another hood ornament would cost if I found one at a junk yard? I'm sure I could find one there. Dodge Caravans are everywhere.

---

While doing those previously mentioned errands today, I saw a billboard sign advertising the $300,000,000 Powerball Jackpot up for grabs tonight. So obviously I had to stop and buy some tickets. I had $4 on me so I bought four quickpicks. I'm not holding my breath that I'll win because it's very likely that I won't even sniff a winner. But you can't win if you don't play, right? Here's to hoping... ;>)

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It is raining again today. It's going to rain again tomorrow, too. It has been rainy and overcast for over a week now here in southern New Hampshire. It is quite depressing to not see the sun for so long. Forecasters are saying that this weekend alone we could get two inches of rain. Add that to the other inch or so of rain that we've had in the last week and we're looking at about three inches of rain in about 10 days. I suppose the only bright side to the weather now is that it isn't cold enough to be snow. One inch of rain equals ten inches of snow, so we'd have 30 inches of the white stuff. Now that would really be depressing.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Organizing the DVD's & videos



Do we ever stop to think about how much stuff we own? Here in the United States we take the luxury items for granted. I know I do.

This hit home for me today as I was putting my DVD's in alphabetical order by title. It never really hit me how large my collection has become, even though I pass the shelves that they are on many times every day. It also never really hit me how much I need a better shelving system for them.

I have a spreadsheet on my computer that I made up for my movie collection, both for DVD's and VHS tapes. It not only shows the title of the movie but also the year, rating, length, director and the top four actors. It's a long list and I can sort it any way I like. The scary part is that I still haven't added many of the VHS tapes I own. These are the ones that I haven't bought the DVD for yet but still want in my collection. As I slowly convert the collection from VHS to DVD, I offer my VHS tapes up for sale on ebay. (Self Promotion! ---> Look me up & check out the items I'm selling! My user name there is john14124) .

I mention all this to ask the questions: What kind of stuff do you collect & why? What got you started collecting whatever it is and do you still enjoy it?

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Alias 5.3: The Shed



A woman arrives at a secured lab in Istanbul where scientists in protective suits experiment with a liquid substance. She shoots a guard and punches a code to enter the lab. Holding the scientists at gun point, she steals two vials and breaks a third before locking them in and bolting. They die instantly.

In the APO office, Marshall shows a video feed of this theft to the team. The liquid, he says, is called Substance-33, a deadly nerve agent that kills in seconds. He identifies the woman as a lackey of Gordon Dean, based on her knowledge of the code and the computer she used to hack it.

Marshall traced the hacker's signal to Prague. Jack gives the case to Sydney, Marshall and Tom Grace. Sydney privately asks Jack why Dixon isn't going. Jack says that Dixon is with Sloane, who was allowed to meet a contact with information about Nadia's cure.

Inside his prison cell, Sloane tells Dixon that he's paying Dolzhenko, the contact, $300,000 for a lead. Later, in Omsk, Sloane convinces a wary Dixon to allow him to meet Dolzhenko alone. At the meeting, Dolzhenko points a gun at Sloane and steals the money.

In Prague, the APO team tracks the hacker to a coffee shop. Armed with a microprocessor concealed at the back of a mint pack, Syd enters the café, and speaks to a man with a laptop, assuming he's the hacker. Just then, the signal fades - the real hacker has left the building. Tom and Marshall give chase and capture her.

The team interrogates the hacker, whose name is Rachel Gibson, in a hotel room. Tom catches her transmitting a signal through her watch, and she admits she's a black ops CIA agent. After she passes a lie detector test, Syd says she was in the same situation 13 years ago - when she believed she worked for the country but was actually an enemy.

When Marshall confirms that Rachel's signal went to Gordon Dean, not the CIA, Rachel cooperates. She agrees to download the encryption key from Gordon Dean's Vlasska office nearby in order to enable a file transfer from Marshall's PC.

Rachel, thanks to Syd's remote guidance, successfully downloads the encryption key. As Rachel walks to the elevator, her friend, Peyton, joins her. Sensing Rachel's panic, Sydney receives the key in a quick brush pass. Marshall begins his server download.

Back in Dean's office, Peyton, who has been observing Rachel's change in behavior, alerts Dean. After spotting the file transfer, Dean and Peyton leave the building and trigger a bomb.

Marshall discovers that Dean had triggered an EMP that fried all electronics. Tom rushes out the hotel room to help Rachel. Bombs explode as Tom makes it to Dean's office. He finds a semi-conscious Rachel beneath the rubble and cradles her in his arms. Sydney, who arrives shortly after Tom, meets his gaze silently.

---

I'm thinking the writers are eventually going to kill off Nadia, Sloane's daughter and Sydney's half sister. Tonight's episode was just a teaser in regard to Nadia's storyline, which was a bummer. I really would like to know, is the charachter (dying) dead or not. If so be done with it, if not let's find a cure and get her back on the show. Still the episode was good and we were introduced to one of this season's new charachters tonight.

If you currently do not watch this show, please do. Thursdays at 8 PM on ABC. Check your local listings. Alias is one of the best shows on television. You can buy seasons 1-3 on DVD now and season four will be released on October 25. That's what I did after getting involved with this show at the start of last season. Now I'm up tp speed. I've watched seasons 1-2 twice and season three once, so far.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

How to make Green's Kick Butt Roast Beef Sandwiches



While commenting on constant rain's blog about cheese, I mentioned my special sauce that I put on my roast beef sandwiches. She asked me what the sauce was. Instead of just writing the ingredients I wrote a blow by blow description of how I make the whole sandwich.

Then I thought that it would be a good topic for today's post, since I want to make y'all just like me (hungry)...


How to make Green's kick butt roast beef sandwiches:


1/2 lb of roast beef and 1/3 lb of cheese makes 3-4 sandwiches. For best results the roast beef should be red and juicy (freshly sliced at the deli)

sauce:

I just mix mayonnaise, Gulden's mustard and some type of specialty mustard, like dijon or honey mustard or horse radish mustard - depending on what mood I'm in.

On both pieces of the bulkie roll, put mayo on first, then guldens mustard about the same amount of each. Be generous and don't skimp. Then put the specialty mustard on one side only, unless you really want a kick.

Then I slice some onion for each side. Then alternate roast beef and swiss cheese. Usually three slices of roast beef and two slices of swiss cheese works well.

Regular bread is not a good idea because all of that sauce makes the bread too soggy too quickly (eeeewwwwwww). However, flat bread (to make a roll up) works well as a change of pace from the bulkie roll.

Sometimes I'll use provolone cheese instead of the standard swiss. Cheddar cheese is good also.

But.....

It's all about the sauce, baby!!!

Try it and tell me what you think.

I'm getting hungry already....

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

t-shirts, work and waiting



Well, I put the t-shirts away last night, sort of. I actually put them in a drawer in the bureau in my bedroom that would be my significant other's, if I had one. I suppose that's a bonus of being single- plenty of drawer space. :(

As for the paperwork mess - I've waited this long, another day or two won't kill me. (That's the phrase of an expert procrastinator!) I'll try and tackle that job tonight or tomorrow. AOL Key word: TRY
Too bad I don't use AOL.

---

Since yesterday was a holiday and Monday is my normal day off under the new schedule - I now have a floating holiday that I can use anytime between now and the end of the year. I'll probably use it on a Friday, or possibly a Tuesday so I can grab another four day weekend sometime....

Work today was interesting. We're running two more weeks worth of product for our largest customer and then we'll be done until 2006 - unless they change their mind and order more stuff, which has happened before. Today and thru the end of the year the focus will be on R & D projects. We ran a mold trial today using this gawd awful ceramic based material. Very tacky stuff. We made 137 shots - 137 good pieces that is and 188 shots altogether. It's a single cavity mold, so one shot = one piece. The shot weighs 1.3 grams, so I'm guessing the actual part weighs between .4-.7 grams. These pieces will be used to test the viability of the material, which in raw form looked like confectionary sugar. In heated form it looked like peanut brittle. Weird. And not very viable in my uneducated opinion.

---

Have you ever wanted to talk to someone and haven't been able to do it, waiting for them to make the next move? Or waiting from an email from a person that you really want to hear from but haven't? That's where I've found myself over the last week or so. Seems like I've wandered down this road before....

Monday, October 10, 2005

Depressing things to do



Now I recall why I hate autumn so much. It's not so much the falling leaves, though that's part of it certainly. This whole weekend has been cold and rainy. Typical autumn weather here in New England and a preview of the weather that lies ahead - though it will get worse before it gets better. I am not a fan of cold weather. Before you start wondering, I'm here in this part of the country by default, a native New Englander by birth, though I've never lived in the state I was born in. I'd move down south a bit if I had my druthers.

Now that the kids are back home for another week I can try and get some stuff done.

I've been putting off the task of putting away my collction of summer apparel: shorts, t-shirts, swim trunks, etc. since the beginning of October. Just another reminder of another summer come and gone. But it must be done - tonight. I also need to get rid of a pile of t-shirts that I know I've had for over 10 years, just to make room for who knows what else.

Last week I brought out the big comforter for my bed that I bought last year when I moved into this apartment. I think it's time to put away the fans and unplug the air conditioner while I'm at it.

Tonight I seriously need to turn off the television and this computer thing and concentrate on trying to dismantle the pile of paperwork that has clumped on my desk and all over my kitchen table. I also need to start reading.

With that said and the aforementioned chores to try and get through, I'll end this mini rant (for now)!

Which Lord of the Rings charachter are you?



I thought this was neat, even if I lifted it from someone else's blog. Enjoy.

gandalf
Congratulations! You're Gandalf!


Which Lord of the Rings character and personality problem are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Tough day for Atlanta Falcons & Braves



As a long suffering Boston sports fan (until recently) I can sympathize with fans of Atlanta teams today. Two tough losses.

First off, my New England Patriots squeaked out a tough road win against an excellent Atlanta Falcons team, 31-28. Adam Vinatieri, the Patriots placekicker made his 19th career game winning kick today. Talk about Mr. Clutch - when the game is on the line there's no better kicker than #4.

Now I just looked a few minutes ago and the Atlanta Braves v. Houston Astros playoff game has gone final after 18 innings, with the Astros prevailing 7-6, and winning the series 3-1. That's the equivalent of two full games just to get one win. Wow! Houston gets to play arguably the best team in baseball next in the St. Louis Cardinals. This will be a rematch of last year's NLCS. Should be good.

---

Today the kids and I went to church. They go to their age appropriate Sunday School class while I attend the regular service. Today my pastor spoke on Acts 12:1-2,20-24, where Agrippa I kills the apostle James with a sword,and later is struck down and eaten by worms after giving a speech at Caesarea. Lots of action (and history, too!)

I've walked in the amphitheater where Agrippa gave this speech. I've got a picture of it somewhere. Simply amazing.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Another news icon is retiring



Ted Koppel is retiring as of November 22, 2005 as host of "Nightline". He has been host and anchor of this program since its inception 25 years ago, during the Iran Hostage crisis.

So ABC News is undergoing major changes, in need of new talent to host both Nightline and World News Tonight, since the late Peter Jennings stepped down in April.

What an opportunity for the next generation of news reporters who long to sit in the anchor chair. NBC's Tom Brokaw and CBS' Dan Rather retired within the last year also. Major changes at the networks don't happen often, and hardly all at the same time or as close together as you could possibly get.

Once upon a time I wanted to work in television news, but I wanted to be a sportscaster. Oh well.

---

Today, as is supposed to be all weekend, was a rainy day. My kids and I had a pajama day. We didn't go anywhere or do anything terribly exciting. The kids watched "Robots" and "Cinderella" on DVD and played the boardgame "Pay Day", with occasional help from me. I've been trying to clean my apartment, with some success.

Friday, October 07, 2005

It's over....until February 2006



Well, the Red Sox are out of the playoffs, losing today 5-3 to the White Sox at Fenway and 3-0 in the series. There will be no miracle come backs this year. Very disappointing but not unexpected. The Red Sox pitching wasn't the same this year. Manny hit two homers and Big Papi hit one also, but you're not going to win many games with solo home runs. Now I'll only pay peripheral attention to the rest of the playoffs, and will root for the White Sox to win it all. They haven't been in a World Series since 1959 and haven't won it since 1917, a streak of futility worse than that of the Red Sox before last year.

Oh well. Now lets see if the other Champs can get it going - that is the New England Patriots, of course.

Yay for football...


Even though he won't ever read this - Happy 34th Birthday to my little brother A.

This day in history:

Notable Birthdays: Retired South African Bishop Desmond Tutu, 74. Singer John Mellencamp, 54.

In 1849, Edgar Allan Poe died at age 40.
In 2003, California voters ousted Democratic governor Gray Davis and elected Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger to take his place.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Alias 5.2: ...1...



At the seedy London bar, Renee tells Sydney that the people who killed Vaughn own the bar that she is working in, and they have an Operations Center downstairs. Renee adds that since Sydney had blown Renee's cover by being there, she might as well get what data she can from the servers below. Sydney insisted on joining her.

After beating up the bouncer, and using his handprint to gain access, Sydney and Renee breach the underground Communications Center. They battled with the guards in an attempt to recover data from the self-destructing computers and servers to no avail. Before leaving, Sydney grabs a video surveillance hard drive behind a panel and they escape. In spite of Renee's hesitation, Sydney convinces her to accept the phone she is giving her so they can be in touch, while Syd goes to Marshall to help her gather intel from the hard drive they had stolen. They split ways.

Syd meets with her ob-gynecologist and gets her first ultrasound. Sydney sees her baby for the first time and gets emotional, especially after realizing that she is on her own.

In the APO office, the team watches a video footage that included Ivan Curtis, the man who killed Vaughn. Jack further explains that Curtis was recorded dead three years ago, although this video is dated only three days back. Jack concludes that Curtis and Dean have access to high-level resources, especially after seeing that all the traces they have done on them led nowhere.

Later, Sydney calls Marshall to zoom in on a video footage of Curtis dialing a number in his phone. They later find out that Curtis was setting up a meeting with Heinrich Roemer, regarding a package that Curtis had ordered. Syd visits Sloane in his jail cell, and asks for Roemer's location since this arms dealer had worked with SD-6 in the past. When Sloane advises her to not act out of revenge, Sydney points out that what she is doing is for her safety and her baby's.

In Amsterdam, Dixon and Weiss meet with Roemer for a "business deal." With Sydney on video surveillance, Dixon starts planting cameras in the building on his way to the restroom. Suddenly, Sydney sees Curtis emerge from a car that just arrived in the facility.

Roemer leaves Weiss to meet with Curtis in another room. After showing Curtis that his order of Nuridium is at hand, Curtis shoots Roemer and heads to the door with the package. Hearing the gun shots, Weiss defends himself when the guard attacks him. Dixon runs to Weiss' aid, and Sydney leaves her post to get into Curtis' car. As soon as Curtis slides in the back seat, he realizes that Syd is waiting for him, with a gun pointed at his face.

At a CIA safe house, Dixon and Sydney interrogate Curtis, who refused to give them any answers. In another room, the team consults with Marshall on the phone, who warns them that the Nuridium that Curtis already has in addition to the one they had recovered, can enable a massive explosion similar to Hiroshima's bombing - multiplied by 50. They conclude that Curtis needs to be let go, so he can lead them to the other cases of Nuridium. Sydney is reluctant.

Dixon goes back to Curtis, hands him a bottled water, and starts convincing him to reveal the location of the other canisters of Nuridium. Curtis, in exchange, drinks the water and asks for immunity from his illegal businesses as well as from the murder of Vaughn. When Curtis continues to insult Sydney, Sydney kicks him in the neck to where he flew out of the window and into the canal. Syd and Dixon watch him escape, with the tracking serum in his system.

As Jack meets with Thomas Grace, a new agent he is recruiting for APO, Sydney and Weiss wait for a signal from the tracking device they planted in Curtis. When Weiss confides in Sydney that he is considering a position in Washington, Sydney expresses her happiness and says that she will miss Weiss. When Weiss voices out his hesitation to leave due to the recent events in Sydney's life, she insists that he should go. Suddenly, the signal beeps in Sydney's laptop: Curtis is airborne, bound for North Korea.

Using a stealth plane, the APO team approaches Curtis' private jet and sends out a docking tube underneath. As they silently boarded the jet, Dixon and Weiss head to the passenger deck, while Sydney stayed in the storage area to attempt to dismantle the Nuridium bomb. While looking for a detonator, Sydney realizes that the container is not a bomb when she finds a body underneath. Syd looks up to see Curtis pointing a gun at her. Syd counters by saying that if he shoots her, she will cut the Nuridium wires.

In the upper deck, shots were fired between Marcus, Weiss and Curtis' men. The pilot is shot in the process and the plane abruptly banks sideways. Curtis is knocked to the ground and Sydney gains the upperhand when she grabs the gun from the floor and points it at Curtis. As Dixon regains control of the jet, Sydney continues to ask Curtis more questions about Prophet Five and offers to protect him. Curtis says they can't, and terrified of the group he is working for, he pulls the cargo door release button and throws himself out the plane.

Back in the APO office, Jack tells the team that the Nuridium was not going to be utilized as an explosive -rather, it was going to be used to power an advanced cryogenic chamber. The body they found remains unidentified but is under analysis in the DSR. When everyone leaves the briefing room, Sydney reveals to Jack that she can't go on alone, and tells him of her ultrasound. Jack assures her, by saying "I'm here." Syd appreciates this deeply and invites her father to her next doctor's appointment.

A few minutes later, while Weiss and Sydney were saying their goodbyes, Dixon arrives and announces that the body had been stolen from the DSR. Sydney calls Renee Rienne and shares the information. Renee tells her she'll see what she can find out. As Renee crosses the room, she passes by an open container -with the missing body inside, alive.

o

So the story unfolds further. Neither Michael Vartan's or Mia Maestro's names were in the reglar cast credits this week. It appears that Vartan's charachter really is dead, but I'm still skeptical. Maestro's charachter was only mentioned in passing but in the past tense - like she died too. Her storyline remains unchanged from the end of season four. I hope they bring her charachter back.

As I mentioned last week, there were several new cast mates listed in the credits for this season. Apparently some are good guys and some are villains. The jury is still out for me on this new evil organization called "Prophet Five".

Jennifer Garner was listed as Producer for the first two episodes. I wonder if that role will continue? See you every Thursday for show updates.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Dilemma



I've been single waaaay too long. Problem is I have a hard time meeting single women. I don't really like the bar scene, because I don't drink often.

There's a woman I work with, who is much younger than me, whom I'm attracted to. I'd ask her out on a date anyway, if I could. Too bad for me she already has a boyfriend.

As I mentioned earlier, I joined eharmony last month to see what would come of it. I have many matches but have reached open communication stage (where you can send email to each other thru their web site or get outside contact information) with three women. One match looks promising, one closed me out and the other person hasn't responded to my last email outside of eharmony), so I don't know where I am on that one.

The promising match lives in the Pittsburgh area. I've never been to Pittsburgh... We've exchanged photos and email addresses, which is a good start. I've given her my phone number, so when she's ready she can call me.


Red Sox lost again, 5-4. One more loss and they're done until February. Can they come back like last year? My guess is....



NO. They'll win on Friday, maybe Saturday but definitely lose on Sunday.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Tight budget...again.




Once again it's the beginning of the month and I find myself with a tight budget. I just can't go shopping. Those bookstore episodes killed me. I'm getting tired of borrowing money from people. If you'd like to make a donation to the green fund....

---

Well, the overtime plan didn't fly, so I only had to work for three hours today. Now I have the ten hours that I would have worked today made up. No problem. We weren't running anything anyway.

My hoses did come in yesterday. I saw the box from the place we ordered them from on the floor in one of the offices, but the box didn't seem big enough. Of course I didn't bother to open it to see what was inside... So today I spent my time working on my project, which is replacing all of the water/glycol hoses on the three machines we use for production and R & D. In the last few days of running we had a couple of leaks that either shut down or limited that day's production schedule. This was the impetus for replacing the hoses.

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Today I'm going out to dinner with two of my old college buddies - the same guys I wrote about in early July, the last time we got together. It should be a good time. I'll report back on what we talked about later tonight. The discussion is usually pretty interesting. My friend G is a school teacher in a private school and P writes computer software and is an IT guy for an insurance company.

---

Surprisingly, my friends and I didn't really have any memorable conversation. We just small talked through a pleasant dinner & drinks, while watching the Red Sox get tattooed in the first game of the ALDS, 14-2. G did say that he was disappointed that he wasn't teaching one of his favorite classes this year, the only year he doesn't in a four year class rotation. This class of his prompted most of our discussions during our meetings. We've scheduled another get together for the end of November or the first week in December, depending on our schedules.

Monday, October 03, 2005

New schedule...day off? Nope.



So today was supposed to be my day off according to the new work schedule I'm on, as previously mentioned. But it didn't work that way this week.

I need to leave work at 4:30 PM tomorrow in order to make a dinner appointment that I have. So being the clever chap that I am, I told the powers that be that I would come in today and take Tuesday off instead. This so that I wouldn't have to make up the hour and a half that I'll miss later in the week.

Problem: when dropping off the kids last evening, the ex reminds me that she'll be bringing the kids over at 4:00 PM today so that she can attend the Spanish class she's taking for work. But I promised work that I would work a full day today, which is 7:30 AM-6 PM, since that is our new, normal work day. Can't do that, either. So I told them that I would work until 3 PM today and also tomorrow as well, since working less than four hours is not productive.

So I'm actually sneaking in four hours of overtime, since I only need to work ten hours between Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday thru Friday will be the standard 10 hour shift. Management hasn't said that overtime is prohibited now so we'll see if anyone notices the extra time. I don't actually mind doing the extra time as my job is always interesting. Plus, I wasn't able to work on my special project today because the hose I needed did not come in. (At least it wasn't there by the time I left at 3:00).

I can always use the money, anyway, as I seem to always be short when I need to meet certain monthly obligations (like rent, for example).

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Heavyweight Fight Round Three



The Red Sox will get a chance to defend their World Championship as they won 10-1 today vs. the Yankees. They finish tied record-wise for first place at 95-67, even though the Yankees won the AL East based on a 10-9 season series advantage.

The Red Sox did win the AL Wild Card when Cleveland lost at Chicago today.

The Yankees, Red Sox and Angels all finished with the same record. However, because the Yankees lost the season series with the Angels 6-4, they will have to play the first two games on the road in California. This playoffs sets up nicely for a potential third consecutive Boston v. NY AL Championship series and possibly a rematch of last year's World Series. But we shall see.

So the first round of the playoffs (three wins advances) sets up like this, with my predictions in parenthesis:

AL
Boston Red Sox v. Chicago White Sox (Red Sox in five)
New York Yankees v. Los Angeles Angels (Angels in five)

NL
San Diego Padres v. St. Louis Cardinals (Cardinals in three)
Houston Astros v. Atlanta Braves. (Astros in four)

On a side note: After an emotional and injury filled win at Pittsburgh last week, the Patriots lost 41-17 today to San Diego. The game was tied at 17 going into halftime. Apparently the Patriots decided to mail in the second half, getting shut out 24-0. This loss snaps a 21 game home winning streak. The Patriots hadn't lost at the Razor since December 2002.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Heavyweight Fight Round Two



After taking round one last night, the Red Sox dropped today's game, 8-4. The win for the Yankees means that they have clinched the AL East title. Even if the Yankees were to lose on Sunday and finish with the same record as the Red Sox, they win the division because that is their 10th win vs. the Sox this season vs. 8 losses heading into Sunday's game.

The Red Sox are still alive for the AL Wild Card berth, however. They can do no worse than tie for it with Cleveland, who has lost two in a row vs. Chicago. If the Red Sox and Cleveland finish with the same record, a one game playoff will be held on Monday at Fenway to decide the AL Wild Card winner.

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On an unrelated note: Today would have been my 11th Wedding Anniversary if I was still married. I'm not depressed about it at all - in case you were worried. My ex and I admittedly have been happier this last year and a half living our separate lives. Sure it's hardest for the kids - my daughter especially, but they are dealing with it well overall. They might be doing worse with the whole situation if they did not spend every weekend with me.