552 miles... 1 million more smiles.

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Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Serious Moonlight

Just a little tribute to Archibald "Moonlight" Graham, who made his one and only appearance in the Major League 100 years ago today. You may recognize the name from "Field of Dreams," in which Burt Lancaster played "Doc" Graham.

ESPN.com's Jim Caple looks at the Giants' one-game-wonder, and chronicles the "what if."


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Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Truth In Advertising

There's a commercial for Pediasure that I see several times a week, in which a mother and young daughter (maybe 9 years old) are shopping together. The mother says something like "I need to buy some broccoli," and the daughter replies, "I don't like broccoli." Then the mother says she needs to get some chicken, and the little girl responds with "I don't like chicken."

Ok, I can believe that. Broccoli isn't the most kid-friendly food, though I love it. Chicken can get a little boring, so I can buy that, too.

Here's what I don't get. The mother starts walking down the frozen foods aisle and says "I need to get waffles." The little girl says "I don't think I like waffles."

Liar. What little kid doesn't like waffles, for goodness sake? First of all, it's like eating dessert for breakfast! Second, it's really fun to say. Just say it a few times.


See what I mean? Fun to say. And don't even get me started on Belgian Waffles. A waffle with whipped cream and fruit? Yum! I absolutely refuse to believe that Peadisure could taste better than a Belgian Waffle.


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Oh, Pooh.

Not only am I selling off parts of my childhood, other parts are dying off, too.

On Saturday, I heard about the passing of Paul Winchell, the voice of "Tigger." However, the next day, I completely missed this: Piglet's voice, John Fielder, has died, too.


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Monday, June 27, 2005

For Sale: One (1) Childhood

For the last few weeks, the delivery man has been ringing my doorbell and leaving me big boxes of crap. Crap that I left in Jan & Steve's basement when I moved out 13 years ago. Crap that I thought (hoped?) that I'd never see again.

So, now I have a new hobby. I'm selling off my childhood on EBay. Seriously. Or at least, I will be selling it off, if anyone actually chooses to buy any of my stuff.

In the meantime, I'm obsessed with checking EBay several times a day to see if anyone's bid on any of my stuff. They haven't. BUT... people are "watching" my crap. They're thinking about buying it. And I guess that's a good start, since the first of my auctions doesn't end for another four days.

UPADTE: Somebody bid on two of my items! Whoo-hoo! Ten whole dollars coming my way!
UPDATE: I've now learned to spell "Update!"


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Thursday, June 23, 2005

All The Rage

So, I've been feeling the effects of taking the Prednisone, which for those of you who don't know, is a steroid. For one thing, there is such a thing as "'Roid Rage." I've been really moody for the last couple of days. Second, I'm a big fat blob. I'm retaining water like crazy. Fortunately, I only have to take it for a few more days.


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All Apologies to the Boomtown Rats...

But I (officially) don't like Mondays any more. Usually Mondays aren't that bad for me... since, in my weekend-working world, Mondays are actually in the middle of the work-week for me.

I work alone on Mondays, which can be a pain in the butt at times. But usually, Mondays are slow sports days. Monday Night Football means I have to work late during football season, and that isn't a lot of fun, either, since I don't earn comp time or overtime for staying late.

But, all in all, Mondays usually aren't that bad. At least they weren't until this week.

Click here to continue reading my dramatic saga.

Everything started off normally enough. I stayed late on Sunday night, mapping out my sportscast for Monday, because I knew I'd have to spend Monday afternoon shooting a golf tournament. Basically, I just "stacked" my show, making sure to get all the prep work like video cues and graphics done, so that if I ran late and had to ad-lib my Monday show, there would just enough in the script for me to not look like a complete fool.

So, I get to work Monday, grab a news van, and head out to the golf course. I've got it planned out so that I should get there just in time to catch some local players as they make the turn near the clubhouse and parking lot. Otherwise, I'll be chasing them all over the golf course, and wasting a lot of time.

About halfway there, I hear a loud thumping noise in the back of the van. I stop at a traffic light, roll down my window, and the woman in the car next to me verifies my fear: I've got a flat tire.


I pull into a parking lot, walk to the gas station across the street, and call the station. Of course, I can't reach anyone that can help me out, and nobody quite knows what to do. I know one thing: I'm certainly not going to change the tire myself. Not when I'm on one of the busiest streets in the city, only five miles from the station, and dressed in khaki and white with sandals.

Anyway, I finally get hold of Cory, who says he can get away from work in about ten minutes to come get me. He takes another news van, picks me up, then I have to drop him back off at the station, and head out to the golf course. By the time I get there, it's almost an hour later than I planned.

Fortunately, things work out. I manage to get video of several local golfers, the very last of whom hit a thirty-foot putt just as I was getting ready to pack it in. At one point, I wasn't really looking where I was going, and I tripped over a curb, but only one person saw that, and we shared a little laugh. A little later on, I had to shake a couple fire ants off of my sandal, but that didn't seem like a big deal either. The little bastards are everywhere here in the South.

I was still running late, of course, but expected to get back to the station by 5:00, leaving just enough time to write my show, edit all of my video, and maybe even brush my hair and put on makeup by my air-time at 6:23-ish. No time for dilly-dallying, but enough time to get the job done. Or so I thought.

On the drive back, my underarm started itching like crazy. I looked, and there were a whole bunch of little bumps on the inside of my upper arm. It really itched a lot, so I decided to waste a few more of my precious minutes and stop at a drugstore to buy some Benadryl Ointment. I usually keep some in my purse this time of year anyway, since I get bitten by so many bugs shooting baseball in the summer.

While I was in the store, my ears started burning. Not in a "someone's talking about me" kind of way. More like a literal, "feels like they're on fire" kind of way. When I got back out to the van, I looked in the mirror. They were bright pink on the outside, dark purple on the inside. Uh-oh.

When I got back to the station, I ran to the bathroom and looked in the mirror. My red underarm bumps had spread to my torso and thighs. I itched like crazy. And I didn't feel so hot. But it was 5:15 and I had a show to do. I hunted down our news producer and told him I wasn't feeling so good and that if he wanted to take any of my sports time, he was welcome to do so. Then I went back to my office. But I couldn't work. I was having a little trouble breathing, had horrible heartburn, and couldn't stop scratching myself.

Cory heard I wasn't feeling so good, and came to my office, only to find me lying on the floor. I hadn't passed out, but I felt like I was starting to panic, so I laid down. It was easier to breathe like that anyway.

I've never had any kind of weird allergic reaction to any kind of insect. I've been stung by bees, yellow jackets, wasps-- nothing. I'm pretty sure I've even been stung by fire ants before, to no ill effects. Cory looked up "Fire ant stings" on the internet, and sure enough, it says that they can cause anaphylactic shock. Great. He told me I needed to go to the emergency room, and I said I couldn't do any such thing until I did my newscast.

A few minutes later, my news director told me the same thing. He called Dave in (which made me feel awful, since it wasn't just Dave's day off, he was also trying to take a couple of vacation days this week, too). Then he started helping me put the show together, thankfully, since I was having trouble thinking straight. Dave arrived around 5:45, and Cory drove me to the hospital.

Actually, he drove me to more than one hospital. When we arrived at the Medical Center, the emergency room waiting area had overflowed into the parking lot, and a woman told us she'd been waiting for over three hours. I got inside, and the waiting room looked like a prison ward: Metal benches, no magazines, and one TV bolted to a far wall. We got the hell out of there and drove to St. Francis instead.

Cory had to run back to work, and by the time he returned 45 minutes later, they were ready to take me in. I actually felt a little better, though it was pretty obvious that I was in some sad shape. Most of my body was purple (with the exception of my lower arms and legs), and my blood pressure tested at 77/56. The doctor asked me "Are you sure you didn't strip naked and roll in an ant hill?" We laughed, and counted my ant bites. There were three. Two on one foot, one on the other.

So, they slapped me into a cot and prepared an IV of steroids and antihistamines for me. I was shivering a bit and feeling a little queazy, but I didn't start shaking and feeling really nauseus until she missed with the IV needle several times. I think I was going into shock, but I'm not sure if it was because of the fire ants or because of her lack of needle insertion skills.

After about an hour, I was back to a normal color. After two hours, they sent me off with a prescription for Prednasone and Pepcid (which, in addition to being an antacid, is also an antihistamine. Who knew?). After filling my prescriptions, I went back to work and anchored the last two shows of the night. Dave stuck around for a little while, just to make sure I had everything squared away, then tried to go back to enjoying his time off.

So, after the flat tire, and the trip to the emergency room, I got home from work, and got my last piece of bad news for the day... an email from Jason and Peter saying that they had to put one of their cats to sleep. Sebastian was one of the nicest, sweetest kitties I've ever met, and I was very fond of him. Bad news comes in threes, right?


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Tuesday, June 21, 2005

The Spring of Self-Discovery

As the first day of summer reaches us, I thought I'd reflect back on the last season. In February (not technically spring yet, but roll with me here) I discovered I had a retarded kidney.

It's truly amazing what you don't know about yourself. Seriously. 35 and I have a slightly defective kidney.

You'd also think that after 35 years on this planet, and over 3 1/2 years in the South, I'd know if I was allergic to fire ants. Au contraire! Monday, I discovered that I'm very allergic to the little bastards. Hive-popping, swelling, purple-turning, difficult-breathing, ear-ringing allergic.

Thankfully, Cory and my boss forced me to go to the emergency room. (St. Francis Medical Center, who I always thought would be a much better patron saint for a veterinary hospital, but I digress.) The funny thing is, three hours at the hospital was just part of my miserable Monday. Oh, there's more. Much, much, more. However, I'm too pooped out to detail it in any fashion right now. Perhaps tomorrow.


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Thursday, June 16, 2005

Music Midtown: The View Through a Crappy Disposable Camera

Sure, I've got a great digital camera. Only one problem. It's almost too nice. I'm afraid to take it to things like three-day music festivals with 300,000 drunk fans and a Tropical Storm on its way. So, because we wanted some documentation of our weekend, we picked up a crappy disposable camera at Target on our way out of town. Our goal: To take a picture at every show we went to. And, with the exception of Lou Reed, we did just that.

Unfortunately, a combination of poor lighting (many of the good shows were while it was dark out), distance (I'm too old to try to fight my way near the stage), and all-around cheap camera equipment ($6.99), made most of the photos nearly unrecognizable. You wouldn't think that John Fogerty and Joan Jett looked that much alike. In our pictures, you can't tell the difference.

We did, however, manage to get a few highlights from the weekend caught on film.

One of the most interesting parts of Music Midtown was checking out all of the "Festival Poles." This was one of our favorites: Wylie E. Coyote, complete with a miniature disco ball, police light, and four built-in cupholders. Ingenious! Posted by Hello

About halfway through the Robert Randolph show, it started raining. Correction. It started pouring. Wylie disappeared from the crowd for a few minutes, then came back later with more weather-appropriate attire. Posted by Hello

Cory made a friend on our final day at Music Midtown. Here he introduces us to "Mr. Cuervo."
Posted by Hello

I got close enough with Senor Cuervo to just call him "Jose." Here, we share a hug. Cory was apparently jealous of my new boyfriend, and felt the need to cover part of the photo with his thumb. Posted by Hello

Our second-to-last show for the weekend was Def Leppard. And though you can't really tell by this picture, we were very close to the stage. That's the only reason why the following two pictures are somewhat understandable.

By the way, the big red hat in the immediate foreground belonged to the short, fat, unattractive man who was molesting his slightly shorter, slightly less fat, and moderately less unattractive "lady friend" through the course of the concert. That, in itself, would have been bad enough... but he kept accidentally rubbing up against Cory during the process. Gross. Posted by Hello

More Def Lepp. Joe Elliott and Rick Savage still look pretty good. They've aged better than a lot of rock stars. Posted by Hello

Speaking of aging rock stars, our last concert was DEVO. This picture is beyond awful, particularly because it was the last photo on the roll, so it's overexposed on one side. I just felt the need to document the fact that we actually saw DEVO in concert.
When we took this picture, Mark Mothersbaugh was throwing "Energy Dome" hats at the crowd. Good times.
Posted by Hello

So there it is. Our Rockin' Road Trip 2005. Sure, we saw a bunch of great concerts, got soaked in the rain, got sweaty in the sun, ate some good festival food (The best gyro I've ever had in my life), Walked about 10 miles, and amazingly, never once had to use a porta-potty. I'd call that a success!

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Music Midtown: Addendum

If you've ever tried to get around Downtown or Midtown Atlanta, you probably already understand why I took this picture. No, it's not a tribute to Elton John's album "Peachtree Road."

Posted by Hello

For those of you that aren't familiar with Hotlanta, imagine a very big city, where nearly every street is named "Peachtree." To borrow from an episode of Seinfeld:

"How can the same street intersect with itself? I must be at the nexus of the universe!"

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Monday, June 13, 2005

Soooo Tired....

Too pooped out for a lengthy post... Cory and I just got back from Music Midtown in Atlanta this weekend. So, instead of a blow-by-blow rundown of the weekend, you're getting a list of the bands we watched in order (sort of), with links to their official websites when possible:

Lou Reed (yes, he's still alive)
The White Stripes (in their only US concert for the entire year)
Bloc Party
MetalSome Monday (A heavy-metal karaoke band in Atlanta. They were awesome! I reccommend visiting their website)
Robert Randolph and the Family Band (if you've never heard of them, I pity you. An amazing show.)
John Fogerty (sounding just fine without CCR, thank you very much)
The Killers
Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
The Pixies (reuinited and touring after 12 years)
Joan Jett & the Blackhearts (who I saw in 1988)
Def Leppard (who I also saw in 1988... before Steve Clark died. They're just as great on tour as they were 17 years ago.)
DEVO (That's right. I said DEVO. As in "Are we not men? We Are DEVO! The first show of their 2005 tour. They're in their 50s now, and look like they're having a blast!)

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Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Video Killed the TV Star

I'm almost afraid to post this, because I'm scared that some television stations might think of it as a new cost-cutting measure. And I'd love to say that I'm kidding about when I say that, but I'm not.


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What's that Smell?

I don't know how to describe this little news item without sounding vulgar. But I feel the need to share it with you anyway: Woman Charged with Smuggling Fish in Skirt.


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Baseball Diaries

Either Mother Nature or the Gods of Baseball decided to frown upon us over the last seven days. First, rain, rain, and more rain pushed the State Baseball finals back several days, thus making last week a logistical nightmare. Then, yesterday's make-up date for the state title also got rained out. So, our worst-case scenario occurred:

The state baseball championship and the first day of the MLB draft on the same day.

Now, when I worked in Missouri & Iowa, covering the MLB draft was an afterthought. It was pretty rare that we'd have a local kid selected, even though we had a really strong JuCo in our viewing area. In Georgia & Alabama, the draft is huge. We always have a few local high schoolers, and a bundle of local college kids, that get selected.

So while attempting to cover the big Shaw-vs.-C-Town state title matchup (a pretty big deal, since the two teams playing for the state title are located about ten miles from each other here in C-Town), and trying to work out the logistics for a live shot during the game (always a big pain in the butt), we also had to listen to MLB Radio and watch the MLB.com draftcaster for local kids.

Ah, it was worth it. For the first time since Frank Thomas in 1989, a local kid was a first round draft pick! The St. Louis Cardinals picked Russell County's Colby Rasmus 28th overall. Not too shabby. And to make things really convenient, he spent the afternoon at the Shaw/C-Towngame. I have to say, he looked pretty sharp in that Cardinals ballcap.

I don't know Colby that well, though I've interviewed both him and his coach/dad, Tony, several times. I honestly can't think of a kid that's more deserving of something like this. He lives, eats, and breathes baseball. And he's a heck of a ballplayer. I can honestly say that I've never seen him make a mistake on the field. Oh, and I'm not just saying this because I know that his mom, Robin, will probably read this.

Of course, Cory's a huge Redbirds fan. So, in a fit of utter non-professionalism, I asked Colby to autograph Cory's ballcap (the same one that Zoe was napping on a few weeks back). He didn't give me too strange a look when I asked. Turns out, it was his first autograph as a Cardinal.

That was the easy part of the day. Covering the state Class AAA finals was the hard part of the day. Dave shot the games, I anchored the show live from the ballpark. It was hot, I was cranky and sweaty. Oh, and people kept walking in front of the camera. I had to spend half of my live shot shoving people out of my way. Seriously. I needed a bouncer.

I know I bitch a lot. Today was actually a lot of fun, in that weird, stressed-out, challenging way. I guess it's the same reason some people run marathons. It's hard work and sometimes you just want to roll up into a ball and cry, but when it's over, you feel pretty good.

By the way, C-Town High School won the state title, sweeping Shaw 10-2 and 9-1. No C-Town or Shaw players were drafted during the game (which surprised a lot of us). But tomorrow is another day.

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Friday, June 03, 2005

Tag! I'm "it!"

Well, last night, Basil tagged me with a Music Meme. And since I'll probably run into him tomorrow night at the Catfish game, I'd better post a response and soon!

The last CD I bought was:
Devil's Playground by Billy Idol. In fact, it's the only CD I've bought (for myself) in well over a year. I heard the song "Scream" one time, and rushed out to buy the CD that very day. Of course, the fact that I spent the majority of my early-to-middle teenage years completely obsessed with Billy Idol might have something to do with it.
Honorable Mention goes to Def Leppard's "Rock of Ages: The Definitive Collection," which I plan on purchasing sometime in the next few days. Can you tell I'm going through a bit of early 1980s nostalgia?

Song (CD) playing now:
Though I own lots of CDs, I rarely listen to them. I listen to my XM satellite radio most of the time, since I don't have a CD player in my car. I just checked the CD carousel in our living room... nothing in it. Upstairs, in the spare room, Generation X: Perfect Hits 1975-1981 is in the portable CD player. I was listening to it a couple weeks ago while playing video games. Once again, it's that Billy Idol/nostalgia trip I've been on.

Five songs I listen to a lot or that mean a lot to me:
"Spirit of the Radio" by Rush- A couple of years ago, my late friend Mike asked some of his friends to write an essay about a song that was significant to us. I wrote about "Spirit of the Radio." Quite simply, it's the first rock-and-roll song I ever fell in love with. I'm providing a link to the essay, but his domain name expired last week.
"A Midsummer Night's Dream" by Felix Mendelssohn- My parents primarily listen to classical music. They have since I was a kid. We also would always eat dinner together (something pretty foreign to today's families, I suspect). Anyway, on Sunday nights, they'd often ask me to put on some "dinner music," and more often than not, "A Midsummer Night's Dream" would be my selection. It's soft and melodic and makes for nice dining music. I selected it so many times that my mother started referring to it as my "leit-motif," and they've played it for dinner music just about every time I've returned home for a visit.
"Come Sail Away" by Styx- Yeah. That's right. I said Styx. The kings of what Cory would call "pussy rock." If Mike were still alive, he'd probably disown me for even owning one of their CDs, But Styx got me through a lot of rough years in Kirksville. I love singing along to their Greatest Hits at the top of my lungs. Hell, I even saw them in concert at the Quincy (Illinois) Raceway. Besides, how many other songs about alien abduction can you name?
"Copacabana" by Barry Manilow- This is my karaoke stand-by. It's a fun song, easy to sing, and you can usually get the drunks to get up and dance, thus averting attention from myself.
"In Your Eyes" by Peter Gabriel- Cory and I have been trying to pick the perfect song to dance to at our wedding. We're pretty sure that this is "the one."

Three people I will Tag:
Cory, because he buys more CDs than anyone else on the planet.
Kelly(The Library Diva), because I'm curious to see if she's bought "Rock of Ages" yet.
The Lady Crumpet, because thinking about Mike got me thinking about her, and because I know she loves a good excuse to blog about Crowded House.

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Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Star Wars Part III

So, Cory and I finally got to see Revenge of the Sith tonight. I have to say, it made me a little sad. Every time the music swells and the words "STAR WARS" burst on the screen at the beginning of the movie, I feel like I'm seven years old again.

Anyway, I can review the movie in three words:

Needs more Wookiees.

Other than that, it was pretty good.


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