Tuesday, July 30, 2002

So Bruce Springsteen's new album comes out today, which means his new songs will be all over the radio. I don't have a problem with this as I consider myself a Bruce fan, but now you will see all these people coming out of the woodwork claiming to be diehard supporters of the Boss, who think they are deep for knowing Jersey Girl, Thunder Road and Born in the USA. Note to those people: if you know the words to Born to Run but not Candy's Room, you are not a diehard fan. If you go to a concert and wonder where Glory Days and Hungry Heart are, you are not a diehard fan. Basically, if you only know the mainstream Bruce songs, you are not a diehard fan.

I am not a diehard fan. I don't have every album, don't go to 6 out of his 10 Jersey concerts and I don't regularly visit backstreets.com. I know too many diehards (who do all of the above and more) to even put myself near that category. It is possible to have a NJ bond to the Boss, to appreciate his songs for the common man, and let's face it, some of his tunes are pretty darn catchy and drunken singalong worthy. I just don't like the people who call up radio stations for free copies of the new CD, claim to be a lifelong fan and when they get quizzed on the lyrics of Bruce songs, they are completely like 'Ohmigod, he had albums before Born to Run?" Ugh.

Friday, July 26, 2002

Why do I get the feeling that the kidnapping of little girls is this year's 'Summer of the Shark' story for the media? 2000 kids are abducted in the country every day, and we only hear about the cute little girls? They're sad stories, yes, but why don't we ever hear about boys getting kidnapped or older children? It's like they've picked up on the public's horror of these crimes and to get ratings, hits, readers, etc, they'll throw all these stories on there, making it look like an epidemic, when really it's been going on this way for a very long time. Ugh.

I'm not the only one freaked out by The Country Bears. Most of the reviewers on Rotten Tomatoes agree with me.

Thursday, July 25, 2002

After seeing my partner today, all I'm going to say is this: Get all the sick mother fuckers off the street before we're all black-eyed and broken faced. And to the evil son of a bitch who did this, God help you. My partner and I may not be best buddies, but he wouldn't hurt a fly. And that someone could pick up on that and take advantage of it outrages the shit out of me.

Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Now, I didn't see the Real Sports episode that claims a mobster says the Yankees threw games in the late 70s, but when I first read about it, I was outraged. I'd like to thank CNNSI for setting me straight with this story. I should learn never to trust anything associated with Bryant Gumbel. And since the Yankees are the scapegoat for everything these days, I should've known better. Also, what the hell does Al Sharpton being involved with drug deals have to do with sports? Again, I didn't see the story, but again, Bryant Gumbel was involved.

Tuesday, July 23, 2002

It's amazing how big New York City is. That I could be riding home on the subway last night after Vicki's b-day (which was swingin' and full of fun despite the airhead/semi bitchy staff ) and be perfectly safe and my work partner be riding a subway and get mugged in the same city is kind of disturbing. He got it pretty badly in the face, and not even for his wallet. No, all this psycho wanted to do was beat him up and take his walkman. He said the guy was talking to himself and seemed pretty odd before hand. And the worst part is that no one in the subway car even tried to help him while it was happening. What's wrong with people? Geez. If it isn't terrorists, it's the people who aren't right in the head coming after you. I'm sick of this shit. Maybe I'll start carrying a gun.

Monday, July 22, 2002

Happy 24th B-day to Vicki!

OK, I was not impressed with Sex and the City. Um, can someone tell the writers of the show that Fleet Week is in the spring, not the fall? It was supposed to be 3 weeks after the baby was born, which was autumn. Considering the epidsode was about how great New York is, you'd think they'd get it right. And we did the whole I Love NY thing in last year's season finale. It was just a weird episode overall and I never thought I'd be annoyed by this show, but I was. I hope it hasn't jumped the shark.

Sunday, July 21, 2002

My dad is no longer allowed near the boat on July 21. Six years ago today, he fell off the dock (his foot got caught in string) and onto our boat.
July 21, 1996

--THUNK!
--"Uh, Dad..."
--"I think I broke my arm."

Yes, it was broken, and yours truly had to drive him to the nearest hospital, sans eyeglasses and I managed to find every pot hole along the way. Dad wasn't too happy. He had to have surgery three days later and he missed my mom's b-day and their vacation to boot. Anyway.

July 21, 2002

This time, I didn't get to witness my dad fall through the bottom rung of the dock ladder and semi-tear up his leg. My mom was there, however, and I could just imagine that she thought she was going to miss another birthday and vacation for my klutzy/unlucky father. He ended up getting a semi deep cut on his shin from the boat motor (which wasn't thankfully turned on) and a nice long scratch from his calf to his upper thigh from the broken wood of the ladder. He is now mulling getting a tetnus shot. I think it would be great if he got a peg leg -- he could really be a pirate! And since the last boat catastrophe happened in a Yankee World Series winning year, I say this could only be a good omen!

Thursday, July 18, 2002

So, I'm just reading the Village Voices article on child prostitution, and I must say the paper is hugely hypocritical. While I know the paper itself isn't shouting/condemning the obsceneness of child prostituion from their office rooftop, they are basically insinuating it's wrong (duh, like who would be for it anyway?) on the cover, yet all those bordering-on-pornographic ads in the back of the mag are just trying to sell sugar-coated prostitution -- and wouldn't you probably find at least one minor at the establishments hawking 'Asian slut virgins' or whatever??? Escort service and simply strippers my ass. I know the paper has to make money on ads, but please. Don't go looking all concerned for the welfare of these girls, and then send skeezy, dirtbag men their way via the classifieds.

Wednesday, July 17, 2002

I am so tired of money problems. Especially when the 'money woes' our country is feeling seems to come from a stretch where we all had tons of money to burn and now we have to, gasp, budget and feel the need to whine about it to get back to our exuberant spending. (If you need proof, look on all the major highways and count the overpriced SUVs and luxury cars. Go try to buy a house right now where the only people who can afford to buy are those who are loaded. My parents' house literally doubled in value in the late 90s because prospective buyers seemed to be growing money trees in their backyard. And check out the wardrobes of your average suburban teen -- it's not just Gap anymore. It's all designers, all the time).

I hate the stockmarket. There, I said it. I don't see the need to put my hard earned money into something shaky, when the people you trust to invest it are just as bad as Miss Cleo with their "bad feelings" and intuitions. I also hate it because it's the stockbrokers of the NYC area who have driven rents sky high with their bonuses (that are bigger than my salary) and kickbacks, all for being greedy. My apologies to the honest stockbrokers, but you seem few and far between. I say it's about damn time we had an economic slump (nothing too bad, just a lull), just to get us back to reality -- we can't have everything we want when we say we want it, as our parents tried to tell us when we were kids. We know no patience any more. It's sad.
Well, the Real World Chicago Reunion special was kind of blah. Looks like Cara has gotten even more fake as she's gotten thinner. Keri being "pre-engaged" to a guy she's been dating for 6 months is kind of weird. She was my favorite out of all of them for being the most real. Now she's reverted to immature relationship tactics -- does "pre-engaged" sound like a term that you invent in middle school so you can show off your relationship or is it me? -- and she seemed kind of sedated or something. And then there was dear, sweet, phoney ass Kyle, who has moved to L.A. (for what else, to pursue an acting career) and could only brag that he turned down ultra-campy soap Passions for a role. He insinuated throughout most of the show that Passions was way beneath his acting ability -- this from a man whose credits include school theater and performing a Real World cast-written play (that they all seemed to think was so great, but really, the Tonys aren't going to come after them anytime soon) for kids under a tent on the street in Chicago. Does he wonder why Passions is the only job to come his way? Would the 'you're a terrible actor' thing come into play at all? I think someone should tell him there's a difference between being fake and being an actor, as he's definitely got it all confused. He could use an ego check anyway.

Here's a glowing story about my favorite Real Worlder, not to mention a pat on the back for the Ivy League school from which he matriculated. I thought journalists were supposed to be impartial. I guess they don't teach you that at Princeton.

Monday, July 15, 2002

Amish! Mennonites! Albino deer! Wine! Raccoons! Guns! Fossils! Shopping! My trip to visit Hollis was all that and more. Relaxing ain't the word when it comes to describing her parents' house on Seneca Lake. It's a complete retreat from the oppressive summer in the city and getting-way-too-crowded suburbs. I haven't seen that much farmland intermingled with woods in a long time and haven't enjoyed a dead silent evening (except for the waves of the lake lapping up on shore or the raccoons getting into the garbage) in about 14 years. And I found a new way of getting woken up in the morning -- not by alarm clock, but by shot-gun blast! That happened on my third day there, when Hollis' neighbor shot a squirrel in his backyard around 8:30 a.m. But it was all good because we were off to see Seneca Falls and hit the outlet malls and had to wake up anyway. Hollis and her family were very hospitable and so much like my own second family that I can't wait to visit again.

And yes, I still hate my job. Five days away from it can't change that.

Wednesday, July 10, 2002

I don't know how I've put up with all the psychoness in my office as long as I have. And I'm not whining here, I have people who can vouch for me. But I'm beginning to wonder if there are any normal offices in NYC that would be willing to take me in because I'm not sure how much longer I can go without saying 'screw you guys, I'm going home'.
Hey, did you hear that? It's the pot calling the kettle black! Bud Selig hinting that he doesn't like the way the Yankees do business is not only 'oh please' worthy, it just illustrates what an idiot he is. The man is an OWNER acting as COMMISSIONER of baseball, a position that is supposed to be IMPARTIAL, and he's saying that the Yankees don't do the right thing? Would an IMPARTIAL person band together with his fellow owners and vote out an already IMPARTIAL commisioner, just so he and his friends can rule the roost without any consequences for their greedy actions? Does he honestly think someone who is IMPARTIAL would have voted for cutting two major league teams, both in the 'small market' that he claims so desperately needs saving? Would an IMPARTIAL person treat Jason Giambi like he had just run over his dog instead of winning a home run derby?

I know it really must suck to be a fan of a team whose owner doesn't give a shit. Or an owner who gives too much of a shit and throws together a team of what should be great players, but no chemistry results. George Steinbrenner may not be Einstein, but he has a number of smart people working for him -- people that know that Joe Torre is a calming influence, that Jeter is a HOME GROWN (sidenote: I'm so sick of people saying the Yankees buy thier teams when half their great players came through their minor league system) team leader, that Robin Ventura is the dry wit that keeps people loose, etc. You need to find the pieces that make puzzle, not force them to fit (see this year's Mets or A-Rod on the Rangers).

And let me remind the geographically forgetful Mr. Selig that the Yankees come out one of the biggest, most expensive cities (I'd like to see someone in Kansas City paying $1500 a month for a studio apartment and 40 bucks for a night at the ballpark) in the country. They draw fans (many who make over the national average for salary) willing to spend said cash, not just from the area, but from at least three states surrounding it and god knows how many band-wagon jumpers elsewhere. It's going to get you a lot of money, dough that Mr. Steinbrenner will use to make his team worthwhile. And Selig should know better than anyone that the Yankees will suck again at some point. Dynasties do end, and as much as I don't want to see it happen, I can't help but almost want it so I don't have to have people whining at me about my team's financial practices and I can just enjoy the game again. It almost seems like people (ahem, Mr. Selig) forgot the Yankees LOST the World Series last year and want to believe that they've stolen each trophy from these poor, earnest teams (like those sweetheart Atlanta Braves) whose players are playing for free, not the (at MINIMUM) $300,000 a year they are paid.

So, what am I spewing about? I just realized that baseball is an awful lot like the office politics of the common workplace. The people who have no clue of what they're doing (and no one can figure out how said idiot landed their cushy position, even said idiot) and are being blamed for everything when they're found out will find a scapegoat to get the burden off their backs. That person in baseball is Mr. Selig, who should know when he's in over his head and step down, and stop blaming the Yankees for his own ineptness. Mark McGwire isn't here to save his ass this time.
It's official -- people are lusting after Jason Giambi. I still don't get it (he seems very nice, don't get me wrong, but I've always liked a neck on my man), but apparently some people do, because of the last 19 hits on my site, 12 of them have been for "Jason Giambi shirtless". And I'm sure by writing that in this entry I'll get even more people looking for him. If I knew where to direct you all, I'd let you know, but maybe you can start a letter-writing campaign to some magazine to get him to take off his jersey. Sports Illustrated did it a few years ago with a bunch of shirtless shortstops, so you never know.
A note to Major League Baseball: Don't try to use the game's rich history to try and get us all to forger that ya'll might be walking out on us in a few weeks. Normally, I'm a sucker for such senitmentality as was displayed during last night's pre-game festivities. But it seemed like it was there to make us 'forget' that we might not have any history with this baseball season after August or whenever they decide to strike. Now, I know this is a business and both sides should be able to get as much money as they want. I can see the players' point in that the owners are a bunch of asses who would collude against them in a second if it were deemed legal. And I can see the owners' point against revenue sharing because it isn't fair -- why should the Yankees give money to the Brewers when we New York fans pay WAY more for a ticket, food, merchandise, etc than the people in Milwaukee do? If they do decide this is the only route, I hope to god prices in NY, Boston, LA,etc. fall or people in small markets have to start paying as much as we do (ya think this might be why George can afford such a high payroll and not the evil money tree all these small market fans seem to think grows in the Bronx?).


Anyway, the game needs something to help it get on the ball to some kind of deal because if there is no season or post season this year, you're going to get a lot of bitter people who aren't going to come back. Every other sport can settle their money issues just fine, and I think it's because they know we fans are smart enough to kick them to the curb. Baseball seems to think (especially after last night's display) we're dumb enough to focus on its past and will be so transfixed we'll forget about the present. Sorry boys, not this time.

Monday, July 08, 2002

Before I discuss the Fourth festivities, let me note two things of interest:
1)Thanks to the Canadians for the haze of smoke that settled over my neighborhood this weekend. Apparently, the rest of the Northeast was hit by it, too. I find this funny because a forest fire down the Garden State Parkway a few weeks ago didn't send smoke our way, but an enferno 700-plus miles away will affect us.
2) Ted Williams' family makes the rest of us look really normal. If the son is trying to freeze his dad's head and/or body for DNA, who is going to raise little Ted should cloning become a human reality? And what if Ted Williams pt. 2 joins the Red Sox, then George Steinbrenner lures him over to the Yankees? The whole idea is riddled with important questions like this.

OK, so Red Bank's 3rd of July went quite well, and we avoided the crowds by just going around the block to watch. But the WEBS were in full effect on the train Wednesday evening. It was possibly the worst experience I've had with them yet, but I'm going to spare you all the details.

July 4th was still stifling, but a few of us gathered in Ho to catch the NYC fireworks. The quote of the night happened when the Liberty State Park fireworks, which were a ways away, but still visible, went off, and a few minutes later, the NYC fireworks began (they started at like 9:30 and I place the blame squarely on the shoulders of NBC. I really don't think the rest of the country cared about our fireworks, and NBC taking the broadcast from local station WPIX just shows me how the network used post Sept. 11 patriotism and turned it into a profit). A very confused/bimbo sounding woman says 'weren't we just watching the New York fireworks?' Um, this person had a "joisy" accent, and I would hope to god she was just drunk and not confusing Jersey City with New York. I mean, the big skyline across the river with Empire State Building is a dead giveaway. After the display (we thankfully missed out on Britney Spears. I'm guessing she wore a star-spangled bra and matching hot pants?), we had a Taboo rematch, and the team of Vicki, Andy and I managed a close victory over Dexter, Miriam and Collette. I wonder when the next rematch will be...

It sucks being back at work, but it's a short week for me. I'm heading upstate to see Hollis later this week. And my new baby computer should arrive today -- I've been tracking it on Fedex.com and it's made it's way from Taiwan, to Alaska, to Indianapolis to Newark to Eatontown. It's safe to say it's been more places than I've been.

Wednesday, July 03, 2002

Des and I were remeniscing recently about our freshman year computer lab. It was in the basement of our dorm, which was so convenient and since that was right around the time the Internet really started to take off, my whole floor spent massive amounts of time down there. What Des and I remember most, though, were the interesting young men who manned the place. First there was the guy we were afraid of because he always seemed like he was about to yell at you. He just looked pissed off all the time. I think he was in ROTC, so that he was military minded made us worry even more. Then there was the scary dude. He was like a combination thespian/D&D player/stalker, complete with the long black trench coat and matching hat. Whenever we would go down, he'd greet us with a 'hello ladies', but in the creepiest, most stalkerlike way possible. He'd take our IDs and when we'd go to retrieve them (sometimes we'd wait out his shift until someone else came to relieve him -- you'll see why in a second) he would make a show of pulling our ID out of some drawer, tossing it in the air, then hand it back to us in such a way that he had to touch our hands. EWWWW!!! He was so…creepy. Des said he was the type to scan our IDs when we weren't looking and propably had copies of the IDs of all the girls in our dorm hanging on his bedroom wall. But then there was the absoulte sweetest and cutest guy, whom my friend Lisa and I nicknamed Giggles because he was always smiling or laughing and in a permanent good mood. Lisa and I had a small crush on him and would let each other know if he was on duty, but we were disappointed to find he had a girlfriend who seemed quite bitchy (why is it that nice guys always go for bitches and vice versa?). I hadn't thought about him in a while, but now I wonder what he's doing now. And if the scary one is off fighting in Afghanistan and the creepy one is behind bars for stealing his co-workers' underwear or something.

Tuesday, July 02, 2002

I love this. Every year Red Bank cries poverty over the fireworks display it has been doing since I was a kid. The bill is like $135,000 for the Gruccis to do it, and I understand that is a lot of money to try and raise, considering it's the biggest display in New Jersey. We got the envelopes in Middletown a few weeks ago asking for a donation and that's all well and good, but here's my beef -- why should people of the area be the only ones who have to pay for this? So many people from OUT of town come and don't pay anything, then go home. Meanwhile, Red Bank residents have to pay the taxes for the cleanup and extra security on top of making the donations? My favorite part of this story is the owner of Danny's restaurant complaining that everyone should pay 2 bucks (even the people paying taxes year round) for this when his business will probably make a killing on the night of the 3rd. I'm sure there are businesses donating money to the event, but since they stand to get the most out of this night, why can't they each pledge to donate a little bit? And don't even get me started about the donation thing that comes around to residents -- if you pay some exhorbitant amount of money, you get VIP seating in a park that used to be completely free. That is what pisses me off about all of this. I love the fireworks, don't get me wrong, but it just seems a little lopsided if you ask me.
Derek Jeter and Jordana Brewster? Oh, the humanitites!

I got a "well lookitchu" from some way to old guido on the way to work today. It made me wonder why there are only ugly, gross sexual harassers out there, and then I realized that decent guys would have a little more respect than that. I applaud them.

Monday, July 01, 2002

Meet my new baby. It'll be here within the week. It's the biggest purchase I've ever made, so I'm feeling quite adult at the moment.

This weekend was full o' Jersey Shore fun. Vicki, Collette and Marjorie were coming down Saturday for a concert at the Arts Center and decided to do a beach day with me. We avoided all the Sandy Hook/Sea Bright WEB traffic and headed to Seven Presidents, which was a ripoff pricewise, but there weren't many obnoxious people there, so it kind of worked out. It was a beautiful day and it's amazing how frolicking in the ocean can take everyone back to being 8 years old. And it's amazing how much sand can find its way into your clothing.

Yesterday, Des and I headed to Monmouth Park and we didn't have much luck. I won 8 dollars on one race and Des came very close to winning a 350 dollar trifecta, but didn't and was very pissed. It is so weird at that place because you have the skeeziest of the skeezy cigar-smoking bettors sharing space with families, yuppies and senior citizens, all of whom do nothing more than place a 2 dollar bet. It's a beautiful place, and Des and I are hoping to arrange a picnic there sometime this summer, so everyone be ready.