Thursday, August 31, 2006


I had not heard about this until today when I watched the show. There was a bill that reached the senate floor, known as the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act, which is a bill that would require the government to publish an online database of federal spending. Transparency would promote accountability. Evidently though, senators can block bills anonymously, and thus prevent passage? So one senator decided to block the bill. Crazy.

To get the scoop, watch the below. The first few seconds are comedy. The last minute is tragic. Seriously, this one is worth your time for the pure civics lesson.

Oh. And just so you know (and in case you decide to not watch the clip), the senator who is blocking the bill is Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska).

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Chicago Tips

Quick, I know a couple of you know Chicago real well. Go to my buddy's blog and lay down a tip or two. He is looking for ideas/places to check out.


No better way to cap off a 4 hour drive than some good old fashion fear. Enjoy this one.

Headed to Jackson

Headed to Jackson, MS today - home of one of my favorite sushi restaurants.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Going On The Record

I am going on the record that I should have stayed in bed today. I woke up at 7 AM to take some clothes to the dry cleaner and grab some Starbucks with my wife. Before we left I checked my email and had a little bit of bad news. On the way to Starbucks I seemed unable to carry on a conversation. The barista spilled Carlee's latte on their register. My coffee did not have cream. The dry cleaning was on the wrong side of the car (they pick it up in a drive through) and they were not happy with me. The dry cleaning included a blanket that we had to sign a waiver on (not a good sign if you are having a bad morning). The dry cleaning bill was $90! Carlee rear ends a woman on her way to work. The woman drives away and is no where to be found. Thankfully, Carlee and her car are ok.

Now it is 8 AM and I can't help but think that the bed is looking like a really good place to spend the day...

Monday, August 28, 2006

Traditional Wetshaving?

So I have been talking about trying out 'traditional wetshaving' as opposed to my current Mach 3 approach for some time now. I get a good shave from the Mach 3 but I have a feeling that I would get some personal meditation time in on the mornings that I decided to go for the truly traditional route. Plus, rumor has it that this is best shave you can get on your own...Most likely, I would have to mix it up with my current routine because the traditional routine would probably take a little too much time some mornings.

It just so happens that Lifehacker posted an article on traditional wetshaving recently along with some YouTube videos to inform the dummies amongst us. I wonder if this is the straw that breaks the camel's back...

Sub Pop

"Life is too short to refrain from eating jam out of the jar."
Jam Eater Blues by the Mountain Goats

Courtesy of Cool Hand I heard of the recent post at I am Fuel, You are Friends with a ton of Sub Pop singles. In the spirit of Break out the Flannel, go check it out.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Bring on Soccer Season

Soccer season is in full swing for me.
  • The U-16 team I coach has started to practice a couple weeks ago. We are now scrimmaging various local teams. Today we played a U-17 team that we essentially demoralized after 35 minutes. By minute 40 the other team appeared to no longer want to be on the field, rain was imminent, and the ref just called the game. I think it was 4-0 when the whistle blew.
  • Adult co-ed sign up is in full swing. We had a team BBQ this past weekend at our new home. Chicken sausage, hamburgers, fruit salad, guacamole, registration and rain. What more could you ask for?
  • Men's 6v6 Fall season started today with 2 games. I'm sore.
  • Rumors of a co-ed 6v6 league surfaced for Thursday nights at 8 PM. Sign me up.
  • EPL is in full swing. Carlee is trying to turn me into a Reading fan.
Have you Picked my Kicks yet? If you haven't voted yet, go and do so. Here is the count:

Red kicks: 4 votes
Blue kicks: 3 votes
Lymon Ice kicks : 2 votes
Nike's suck: 1 vote

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Pick My Kicks!

Ok. Here is the deal. I need a new pair of running shoes and I have a gift card to Nike ID, which is Nike's website where you design your own shoes (among other things). I have already narrowed my choice down to a certain style and have made designed three versions that I think would be pretty cool. I want to know which you all think is the best. If you think they all suck, you can say that too. I don't know what other sort of background you might need on these...other than the fact that yes, I do plan on running and yes, I think that lymon color rocks the kasbah.

You can spend hours on this Nike website and it drains the life out of you after a while. The choices are endless! So yeah, what should I pick?

Option 1: Varsity Red, Shock Orange, and Flint Grey

Option 2: Dark Obsidian, Shock Orange, and Ice Blue

Option 3: Varsity Blue, Lymon, and Metallic Silver

Better Know a District

When you need to laugh, the Colbert show works. Check out his interview with Congressman Lynn Westmoreland (from the 8th District in Georgia). Colbert interviews politicians on a regular segment called Better Know a District (a 433 part series). These are great.

If that wasn't enough for you, check out his interview with the congresswoman from California's 6th. Stick this one out to the end to check out her face when he thanks her for supporting the President. Nice.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Punk Rocker Inspiration

I was recently inspired by two random music finds and a comment to make a mix for my pal SINEDDIE.

Inspiration #1: The tune Punkrocker by a Swedish (Stockholm) band named the Teddybears. Go to their My Space page to check it out. It is pretty infectious. Kind of like a flu you don't want to get but when you do, and it keeps you home from like it. Go on. Get sick. Their official website is here. SINEDDIE is an old school punk rocker so this song just makes me think of him when I hear it.

Inspiration #2: SINEDDIE got me into Billy Bragg a long time ago. I stumbled across a cover of Bragg's song A New England recently. If you are quick you can check it out here. The song is by a guy named Jonah Matranga and it is a pretty nice cover of that tune.

I think both tracks will make the August mix that is in the queue.

Appropriate Messaging

Monday, August 21, 2006

Coming Soon: Pick my Kicks!

Coming soon, Pick my Kicks!, brought to you by Nike ID and an old gift card that I have yet to use.

(Oops, sorry Mrs. Alm.)

The Nike ID website is worth some time killing if you have never checked this concept out.

Get That Guy Off My Screen

I have said this before and I feel like a broken record. However, this is more about the steps I took to fix the problem than the problem itself, so bear with me for a moment. Or, just skip to the bottom list and pick up my 4 web surfing tips for the day.

I am sick of the exploitive and personal level news stories that invade my personal on-line space. Specifically, CNN just makes me want to puke. Over time I have tried using Google news but I actually found myself missing something about the CNN website layout. Yea, sad, I know. I think I missed the main picture that would automatically capture your attention. Until last week that is.

Last week: That damn JonBenet Ramsey story was all over the place. More sickening still was the constant barrage of photos showing John Karr. There is something about this whole thing that just turns my stomach. Corrective actions needed to be taken. Thus, I did the following:

1. Blocked all images from CNN using Firefox. If you don't use Firefox yet, here is reason one. I was able to successfully block all images from CNN.
2. Downloaded the Adblock Plus extension for Firefox. This is reason two to switch from IE. I have now blocked all adds on all web pages, including Flash. No more flashing dancing alligators trying to sell me deodorant.
3. I haven't seen one picture of that sicko alligator yet.
4. While I was at it, I picked up the FlashGot Firefox extension that now allows me to download all links (read: mp3) from a specific website with about 2 clicks. Nice. Reason three.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Sage Art or Buff Art?

The votes finished 10-5 for Dry Sage (a couple votes came in via email just in case any of you buff-lovers decide to tally from the comments). The second coat went on this evening and I have to say that you all did a damn fine job. The dining room is looking pretty nice. Thanks for the help.

Now I am thinking that we need to find some sort of cool piece of art that goes with a dry sage dining room. I am thinking of some sort of landscape (perhaps with sage in it). Just imagine how weird the dining room art would have been if Henderson Buff had won.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Paint Our Dining Room!

The second installment of Decoration by Proxy is finally here! This weekend we are going to tackle the dining room. We have narrowed it down to two colors and are ready for some help so we need you to weigh in here.

I have pasted two pictures below. The one thing you should know is that I found a dining room template on Benjamin Moore that allowed me to set the color of the room behind the front room. If you remember back to Decoration by Proxy installment 1, The Great Paint Showdown (Den Version), you all picked the Pumpkin Cream. Thus, I was able to set the back room in this picture to the picture of our den, which borders on the dining room. This way you can see what flows better.

Relevant facts: The dining room has one window and two entry ways. One entryway goes into the den (as noted above). The other entry way is to the kitchen (which has no color chosen as of yet, so we cannot factor that in). It is kind of a small dining room, about 11' by 12 '. Hardwood floors that are a little lighter than the pictures. Oh. And we don't have any dining room furniture so we can match that to either color.

Option 1: Dry Sage

I like the way this flows and so does Carlee. It has nice cool feel to it. We actually like both options, so you don't have to feel like you are voting against one or the other. The lighting in this picture is probably brighter than what we will get.

Option 2: Henderson Buff

We like this one as well. Definitely a little brighter than the sage. But still appealing. We would of course have to live with the fact that our walls are "buff" but I think we could handle it.

Let us know what to do...Thanks in advance!

Food worker does not wash...

A while back I posted about In-N-Out burgers and how the next time I was in Madison Square Park that I would try the Shake Shack as I had read that their burgers were as good if not better. I believe that as a result of this restaurant inspection by the NYC Dept of Health just might change my mind.

The most trusted name in AHHHH!

One of the best things the Daily Show puts out is the mocking of our major news sources, whether it be CNN or Fox or ABC. I have been a huge fan of Jon Stewart for a few years now and am just starting to mine the archives available over at You Tube. It helps when you need a good laugh.

This is a nice quick hit on CNN that I find really funny.

After that, intro, I am hoping you give this one 4 minutes of your time and watch the montage the Daily Show put together on the End of Days coverage that all of the networks are shoving out. The fear factory is running on all cylinders.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

We Don't Need No Water...

...Let the mother#$@!^% burn.
Bloodhound Gang, Fire Water Burn

(Yes, I am practicing self censorship these days.)

I use a Dell laptop, courtesy of my company, and it turns out that the biggest safety recall in computer industry history was just launched because Dell laptop batteries can potentially cause fires. Looks like I am shutting down my computer every time I leave the house.

Monday, August 14, 2006


The other day, Carlee and I were talking about underarm hair. Yes, underarm hair. There are various contributing factors that led to this being a logical topic of conversation. The details are irrelevant to the thought I wanted to put out there today. And in fact, the lack of context makes this even more interesting in my mind. Anyway. The conversation ended with the following exchange.

Me: "I think I have attractive underarm hair."
Carlee: "I think it makes you look like an orangutan."
Me: (silence)

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Castro Signs with Adidas

Adidas has announced a new sponsorship deal with Fidel Castro, sending shockwaves through the international political and athletic communities. Bold move. I wonder how Puma will react.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Growing Old

My good friend turned 34 today. He has a beautiful family and a he deserves all the best. We spent the evening at his house and had an amazing dinner courtesy of his wife who is an awesome cook. Every time you go over their house the food is great, there is a lot of it, the drink flows, and the company is like family.

Happy Birthday Jeremy.

Not A Pretty Sight

Glad I am in Lafayette and not traveling this week. Enjoy your weekends.

Barcelona Highlights

Here are the Barcelona goals from the game last night. 27 seconds into this video Ronaldinho gets the ball and breaks some ankles with his dribbling skills. After the first shot of this goal, the camera zooms in on him specifically and you get to appreciate how impossible it must be to try and figure out what direction he is going.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

"Border"-line Crazy

The last 2 days have been crazy and I will not do them justice just yet. Here are the cliff notes:
  • Barcelona game: Completely awesome. With 13 minutes left, Barca was down by 3 goals. In the second half, they put in their studs: Ronaldinho, Messi, Deco, Eto'o. It took a while for the impact to hit, but when it did, it hit fast. In 13 minutes they scored 3 goals. Ronaldinho did some things with the ball that gave me chills. It was really incredible to see these guys play in person.
  • We spent the night in Houston. We spent the next day shopping with leftover wedding gift certificates and now have a new coffee table and rug being delivered to the house. Cool deal.
  • Driving home from Houston, our front right axle (self diagnosed at the moment), gives out and the tire becomes so unstable that we cannot drive. Thus we end up on the LA/TX border for an hour waiting for a tow truck to take us home. Sights at the border include: a man playing golf at the rest stop, snakes, possum, locusts, what I suspect was a used car thief ring, and Carlee and myself playing soccer on the sidewalk.
  • Tow Truck: The driver (Jeremy) brings his girlfriend, leaving us no real seats so we get to sit scrunched up on the bed (that's right, I said bed) behind the two front seats.
  • Get home, brand new freezer has managed to break while we were out of town.
  • I can no longer fly with a bottle of water.
What's going to happen next?

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

FC Barcelona vs. Club América

Wow am I looking forward to Wednesday: Courtesy of my friend 'retired,' Carlee and I are going to the FC Barcelona vs. Club América at Reliant Stadium in Houston. The list of global soccer stars on this team includes: Ronaldinho from Brazil, Samuel Eto'o from Cameroon, Lionel Messi from Argentina and Rafael Marquez from Mexico. Sweet.

Barcelona won the Champions League and Spanish League titles last year, so they are no joke, quite possibly the best club in the world.

Break out the Flannel

Come as you are, as you were
As I want you to be
As a friend, as a friend, as an old enemy

Somewhere along the way a few weeks ago I found someone hosting a bunch of Nirvana tunes and I have successfully stayed up this evening wasting time on line listening to some classic grunge. Break out the flannel. Time for bed.

Monday, August 07, 2006


So there is a restaurant in our town that opened within the last year that chose the name Yuki. It is a teppanyaki/sushi bar themed restaurant. Every time we have dinner there, we are the only ones in the place. It's kind of weird...although you have to think that they really chose a poor name for their business. I believe the name is supposed to be pronounced with a long 'U'. Unfortunately, it rolls off the tongue with a different sound.

They have also been in Grand Opening phase for a long time. Is there a shelf life on that claim? I would guess 3 months max.

The food is good and I believe it is more affordable than your standard teppanyaki gig. To be honest though, I have thus far refused to buy sushi from a place called Yuki. I have my doubts they have the marketing wherewithal to succeed.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

MLS News

Yesterday was a big day for the MLS on two fronts.

The MLS All Star team took on Chelsea FC, the 2 time defending champions of the English premier league and defeated them 1-0. Chelsea is made up of some of the world's biggest stars, including Ballack, Drogba, Lampard, Cole, Shevchenko, Essien, Robben. The list is scary. It is the highest paid sports team in the world.

I am not normally a fan of the all star game and can even get frustrated with the concept. However, I was impressed with the MLS team. They played well together and in my opinion actually had the run of the play for most of the game. I was most impressed with Dwayne De Rosario, Nate Jaqua, and Facundo Erpen. Freddy Adu got his time in and had his moments. I felt he tried to do too much with the ball sometimes and forced a few opportunities. However, he did have some moments of potential and in fact, if he had shot a bit quicker, would have sealed a 2-0 victory.

In addition to the game, the MLS announced a new deal with ABC/ESPN which sets up the first time ever that the league will receive rights fees for season games. The deal lasts through 2014 and means that ABC/ESPN will "bear the burden of making sure the MLS programming is successful. The networks will be responsible for producing, programming and promoting their MLS property." It will be very interesting to see how this affects TV coverage and buzz about the sport. I can see this having a pretty big potential impact in the future. ESPN made poker and the X-Games big in the US, is soccer next?

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Godless by Pete Hautman

This past week I finished Clancy's Executive Orders and also read a book called Godless by Pete Hautman. Godless is a book for young adults. At some point in time, I bought this book for Carlee and I figured I would give it a shot thinking that it would make a nice quick travel read. The only other time I have actually read a book specifically directed to a younger audience is with the Harry Potter series.

Godless is about a 15 year old who one day invents a new religion. "Chutengodianism" sanctifies water, the source of all life, as manifested by the Ten-Legged God, aka that same million-gallon water tower in his home town. The book explores organized religion, the dynamics between his group of friends as the 'faith' evolves, and the conflict between Jason and his religious father, his youth group, etc. The book is an easy read and was enjoyable in a simple thought provoking way. One particular exchange between 2 characters that I thought was great follows:

"How can you understand something you don't believe in?"
"Shin, that doesn't make any sense. That's like saying you can't understand leprechauns unless you believe in them."
"Do you understand leprechauns?"
"I don't believe in them."
"There you go."

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

I've been on all three in 3 days and tonight I find myself in Fairfax, VA. You know you got it bad when it has been a long week and tomorrow is only Thursday. What can you do to cheer yourself up? Watch a little Ze. Where else can you find someone talk about Bush's standing heart rate, signing statements, Mel Gibson, birthday cakes, liberal cereal, and dirty underwear all in one sitting?

the show with zefrank

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Pick Your Tat

"Drawing is like making an expressive gesture with the advantage of permanence."
Henri Matisse

For some reason, one of the random guilty pleasures I have when I am on travel is reality shows. I literally never watch reality shows when I am home. Lately, TLC's Miami Ink has been keeping me entertained. It is basically a day by day of a tattoo parlor. I have never really considered getting a tattoo. If you were going to get a tattoo, what would it be of? I think mine would be soccer related but I need to think about it more...