Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Blog, Blog, Blog...Wubba, Wubba, Wubba

It turns out that they aren't blocking blogspot from work...blogspot must have just been down this morning. This is the second outage in less than a month since I've been using them...consider me less than impressed.

So I finished watching the first season of SportsNight last night and had forgotten that they ended the season finale that year with Isaac (Robert Guillaume) making his first appearance after his stroke (in real life and on the show). It was REALLY cool. I've always liked him as an actor and the way he came back on that show really impressed me.

At the same time, I played another three poker tournaments and finished 3rd, 1st and 2nd, respectively. So in my last 6 tournaments overall, I've won 3, finished 2nd twice and 3rd once. Not too shabby!

And now that I have this wireless connection I can use today, I'm sure I'll probably play a tournament (or two) this afternoon.

(Gee...do you think I have a bad attitude about work?!)

I've been thinking about New Year's Resolutions and the obvious one for me is to lose weight. I'd be pleased if I could lose 35 pounds, but ultimately want to lose closer to 50. That means no more McD's on the way to work, less fast food overall and more trips to the gym.

Other resolutions are to use fewer ellipses (...) in my posts, switch the blog to a new site where I can post pictures, polls, etc., get a new job, spend less money, spend more quality time with wife and kids, win the lottery...I think that's about it.

And now I'm off to lunch at home with the fam.

Until Next Time...

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God Bless Wireless Networks

So I've been feeling slightly guilty about blogging at work lately (although I really shouldn't given the way that they've been screwing with me). Then, this morning, I started feeling a little paranoid about blogging because I couldn't access my blog or Blogger and was wondering if they'd blocked access to the sites. I'm thinking they just may have.

Because right now, I'm connected to the Net through another company's wireless network here in our building. I knew we had a new tenant and decided to throw my wireless card into the laptop and see if I could find a connection. Sure enough...there it was!

So I think today will be spent blogging and surfing to my heart's content, all without worry of doing it through my company's network.

In other news...

Last night was a great night for fans of KU basketball. Not because they won (they didn't even play), but because both K-State and Missouri lost. Now, both of those teams (especially K-State) lose basketball games every so often...moreso in recent history than KU.

But...last night was special because of WHO they lost to. Missouri lost to Belmont.

Read that again...Belmont. They lost to a horse race. Actually, there are more spectators at the Belmont Stakes than there are students at Belmont...a school of about 3,000 students in Memphis, TN.

And K-State? They lost to UMKC...that's University of Missouri-Kansas City. Now UMKC's basketball team has been on the rise in recent years and it's not completely shocking to see them beat someone as bad as K-State, but even then it should be close.

It wasn't.

Final Score: UMKC 93, K-State 52

That's right...K-State, a Big 12 school, lost to UMKC by 41 points. 41 points!!!

I took great pleasure in calling my sister at 10:30 last night as soon as I heard the final score.

That's it for this post this morning, but you can count on more later today, including an update on my poker prowess.

Until Next Time...

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Tuesday, December 30, 2003

What A Long **** He Has

POST you idiots!

OK...after reflecting on my music list more, I'm realizing what a bad, bad, bad idea that was. I know I hate to read long lists unless they are funny...which this one wasn't.

So I've abandoned the list idea for the moment. My apologies to those who actually read the damn thing. It'll never happen again.

Back at work this morning at 8:53 and I am the first one here in my department. I love the week between Christmas and New Year's at the office. Most of the bosses are gone which frees up the rest of us to shoot pool for an hour (like yesterday and most likely today), take 2 hour lunches (yesterday and again today) and listen to music without headphones. Man...are we rebels or what?!

Stayed up too late again last night, but since I wasn't worried about impressing anyone this morning, that worked out alright.

What was I doing until 1:30 in the morning? Playing poker and watching more SportsNight. And doing each one particularly well might I add. I won two of the tournaments and came in second in the third one I played in. So, for $165 in entry fees, I ended up winning $650. Too bad it wasn't real money!

One thing I forgot to mention in my weekend post was something pretty cool that I saw on Saturday Night Live (on Saturday). It was a re-run of the show with Jack Black hosting and John Mayer as the musical guest. As you may have seen in yesterday's list, both Mayer and Black's Tenacious D are on my list of favorite artists, so it promised to be a good show, which it was.

But, one sketch in particular was especially cool. Before a skit, they sometimes show a painting or drawing of the exterior of some building where the skit is supposed to be taking place. This time it showed the outside of a bar called The Wheel. Now...I realize there are probably many bars across this great land of ours called The Wheel, but there is one that I know of personally located in Lawrence, KS, home of the Jayhawks and it is a very popular place with the kids. (Damn...seeing as how I just wrote that, it means that I am officially no longer a kid...WAAAAA!!!!) So I just thought it was a cool coincidence at first. Until, that is, I looked closer and there was a Jayhawk painted on the outside window of The Wheel. It really was based on the bar in Lawrence...pretty cool stuff! Now, I'm just trying to figure out who on the SNL creative or art staff has KU connections.

(My only real problem with the whole sketch was that it was showing Jack Black performing music inside the bar. I'll be honest, I didn't spend much time at The Wheel, but I don't remember it being host to a lot of live bands (or dead ones for that matter). Can anyone confirm or deny this thought?)

OK...I just took a short break to read Dan's daily update, and he's put up a Top 10 TV show list. I thought it sounded good, so here goes mine.

1. SportsNight

2. Cheers (the Coach years)

3. Law & Order (the original)

4. Space Ghost (the 70s/80s version)

5. Dukes of Hazzard (the Bo & Luke version...their cousins sucked!)

6. Dick Van Dyke Show

7. Friends

8. Talk Soup

9. VH1's Driven

10. Dinner for Five (Jon Favreau's show on IFC)


The Almost List: Seinfeld, M*A*S*H, any Arsenio Hall show with Will Smith, Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, E/R (the current drama...not the old 80s sitcom with Clooney and Elliot Gould), Family Ties, Cosby Show, Will & Grace

I'm eager to hear your thoughts!

Until Next Time...

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Monday, December 29, 2003

Some Favorites...

What better way to kill time at the office then come up with lists of some of my current favorites...I'll start with music and add more categories if I have more time.

As I'd mentioned in an earlier post, music is one of my favorite things and I only wish I could play an instrument (guitar) or sing.

Before I start, I will say that this list is in no particular order and I also realize that I will be on the receiving end of crap from my friends for some of these choices. I can live with that if they can live with me telling them to shut the fuck up.

On to the list...

Music
Jackopierce
Pat McGee Band
Vertical Horizon
Dave Matthews Band
John Mayer (shut the fuck up, Dan)
Vertical Horizon
8 Miles Down
Beatles
Norah Jones
Tim McGraw
Toad the Wet Sprocket
Garth Brooks
Dixie Chicks
Counting Crows (if this were in order, they'd be closer to the top)
Five for Fighting
Matchbox 20
Midnight Oil
Guster
Huey Lewis (& the News)
Toby Keith
Rascal Flatts
Jack Johnson
Hootie and the Blowfish
Marc Cohn
Mile Post Nine
Pearl Jam
Rockwell Church (they have a song with the lyrics, "Fuck you and the horse you rode in on." -- how can you NOT like them?)
Sara Evans (wow)
Shannon Worrell
Train
Jason Mraz
Crowded House
Breathe
Cranberries
Howard Jones
Jewel
Montgomery Gentry
10,000 Maniacs (the Natalie Merchant version)
Bryan Adams
B-52s
Barenaked Ladies
Elvis Costello
Better Than Ezra
New Edition (and any variation thereof...Bobby Brown, BBD, Ralph Tresvant, Johnny Gill)
Erasure
Duran Duran
INXS
Janet Jackson
Goo Goo Dolls
Third Eye Blind
Smash Mouth
Police/Sting
Public Enemy
Will Smith/DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince
U2
REM
The Hooters
Depeche Mode
Tenacious D
Live
Wallflowers
Sister Hazel
Verve Pipe
Sheryl Crow
Kenny Chesney

I'm sure I've missed some...and as I've mentioned earlier, I'm always open for new suggestions. Leave your suggestions in the comments or send me an e-mail!

Until Next Time...

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Just Another Manic Monday

Welcome to Monday everyone...the beginning of another fun week of work for some, another holiday week off for others. Unfortunately, I belong to the former group...no, not the Bangles.

Now, while I'm less than thrilled to be back at work, I have to say how much I enjoyed the last nine days at home with my family. I'm really starting to wish that I'd taken this week off as well, but I really needed to carry those vacation days over.

However, with my boss out of the office and this being my last week in this position, it sounds like the perfect time for an extended entry!

So...sit right back and you'll hear the tale...
When last we left our hero...ok, me...my in-laws had headed home and I was just enjoying some peace and quiet.

Saturday marked the day of my largest ever one-day contribution to the profits of the AMC movie theater chain. The day started with the whole family going to see The Cat in the Hat and was topped off with a nightcap of the wife and I going to see Paycheck.

Here's a breakdown on the costs:

Cat in the Hat (matinee):
Tickets: $26
Concessions: $40

Paycheck
Tickets: $16
Concessions: $10
Babysitter: $30

Now, if you're like me, there is one number in that breakdown that jumps out at you...$40 for concessions. In other words, for the same amount that it costs to take the family to Red Lobster for dinner, I was able to get the kids a hot dog, small drink and popcorn to share. Originally, my wife and I thought it would be "cute" for the kids to have lunch at the movies. Guess what...cute doesn't cut it anymore. From now on, we're driving through McD's on the way to the theater.

As for the movies themselves, Cat in the Hat was enjoyable and really flew by. There were a few "adult" jokes in there that really didn't need to be. Mike Meyers is clever enough that they could have pulled off some more sophisticated stuff, but just didn't want to put in the effort. The kids laughed though and that's all that really matters. Plus, my youngest daughter, L, was dancing around to the music at the end and that's always fun to watch.

When we left Paycheck (the movie, not Johnny), I was pretty pleased with the film. It wasn't until I started thinking about it a little bit more that I became less impressed.

Now, let me start by saying, that I'm not a Ben Affleck-basher. I tend to like most of his films (but I haven't seen Gigli yet). I thought he did alright in this movie, but I'm not sure I'll ever really buy him as an action star...and that's what this movie was.

Uma Thurman, on the other hand, is a woman whose appeal I just don't get. I guess she's an ok actress, but those people who think she's so hot...I don't see it.

There were a few plot points that really bugged me, but I don't want to "spoil" it for anyone who plans on going to see it.

The bottom line...if you like John Woo movies, then you'll probably like Paycheck. If you're looking for a better Affleck movie, check out Kevin Smith's Dogma.

So that was Saturday...then yesterday was our second and third Christmas as we went to a church in the small town where my grandma lives and got together with the extended family to eat and exchange gifts. As always, we had a good time there, before heading to my parents' house for even more presents.

The cool part of the day was driving to the even smaller town where my dad grew up and my grandma lived until a few years ago to see her house raised up off of the foundation. One of my cousins bought the house and is physically moving it to some land he has about 3 miles away on the highway. It was very surreal.

And it's moments like these when I wished I had a) a blog where I can post pictures and b) a digital camera to take said pictures.

Anyway...we got more presents...most of them very cool...including some great black and white pictures my sister took of my kids over Thanksgiving.

Some other highlights of the past week...

My son asking more than 50 times (literally) when we were going to grandma and grandpa's house while at the extended family gathering. (This wasn't really a highlight...just an incredible phenomenon.)

My daughter, L, who is recenlty potty-trained, walked into the bathroom at my mom and dad's house, looked around and says, "Nice bathroom...very nice bathroom." I think she's been watching too much Trading Spaces with my wife.

My daughter, K, laughing hysterically at Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern getting hurt in Home Alone. Now, granted, it's funny stuff...but these laughs were a little over the top. I think she may have inherited my wife's sadistic sense of humor. (Sorry dear!)

Watching the SportsNight DVD set I got for Christmas.

Winning a few more poker tournaments.

Spending a lot of time with my family.

I think that pretty much sums it all up!

Have a good week everybody!

Until Next Time...

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Friday, December 26, 2003

Free At Last!

Actually, the in-laws' visit went pretty well and I'm happy to say that I survived.

Christmas was great and the kids got WAYYY too many presents.

Speaking of which...my wife and I were discussing this with some other parents...do you think the plastic twist ties that hold toys in place in the packaging are attached by hand or by machine? It takes at least 5 minutes and sometimes 15 to 30 to get each toy out of its packaging...it's ridiculous!

Also...here's another question for you...when Santa brings presents for the kids...are they wrapped?

Let's see what else...with the in-laws leaving this morning, it freed up the rest of my day to watch the World Poker Tour marathon on Travel Channel. This, in turn, prompted me to logon to partypoker.com and play a few tournaments myself (play money, of course). I was quite pleased because I came in second and also won my first ever tournament. I'd been playing just single games where you jump in wherever there is an empty seat. I like the tournaments better because a) everyone starts at the same level and b) it's the same style I'll play if I ever get up the guts to go play in a real tournament.

It's bedtime for the kids...so I'm off for now!

Until Next Time...

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Wednesday, December 24, 2003

Brett Favre...WOW

This'll be a short post and was hoping to get to this last night, but things have just been too crazy getting ready for the in-laws' arrival today.

Let me start by saying I've always been somewhat of a Brett Favre fan...the guy plays hurt and aggressively (which is sometimes a bad combination).

Last night, though, he gave what I believe is the most impressive performance of his career. Just more than 24 hours after his father unexpectedly passed away in Mississippi, Favre not only played (which is impressive enough as it is), but he played superbly. In the first half alone, he threw for over 300 yards and 4 touchdowns.

Some may criticize him for not going home to be with his family, but I think this falls under doing what he thinks his Dad would have wanted him to do. This was a crucial game for the Packers as they are still battling for a spot in the playoffs. I'm sure his Dad knew he was grieving for him and thinking about him and the rest of his family, I'd imagine, supported his decision to play.

A lot of his teammates may have been silently questioning the decision to start him before the game...wondering how effective he could really be given the emotional punch to the gut he'd just taken. If they were wondering before kickoff, they certainly weren't at halftime.

In watching the game, you could just see the emotion on the other Packers' faces and how happy they felt for Brett with every successful big play.

Anyway...that's the long way of saying kudos to No. 4 and he's just cemented his status as my favorite current NFL player.

That's all for tonight kids!

Until Next Time...

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Sunday, December 21, 2003

Writer's Cra-AAAGGHHH!!!

That's what happens after addressing what felt like a hundred envelopes for the annual Christmas letter.

Now...if you don't get one, don't feel bad, because...well...I don't know you.

Other than that, the weekend has been spent doing laundry...and I'm STILL working on it! I spent most of yesterday and today on it and should finish it up tomorrow.

Unfortunately, there will still be much left to do between now and Tuesday when the in-laws arrive. And, go figure, blogging isn't on that list. So my apologies if there's a lack of posts for the next week.

Weekend Sports Update
All in all, it's been a fairly crappy sports weekend for me.

Although the Jayhawks won last night, they are currently getting their ASSES kicked by Nevada! No...not UNLV...just Nevada! It's been pretty embarrassing so far.

The Chiefs got their butts kicked by the Vikings yesterday and had they won, they could have at least locked up a bye week in the playoffs. Fortunately, Indy lost tonight so the Chiefs still have a chance of getting a bye week in the first round of the playoffs.

KU plays in the Tangerine Bowl last night. I'm not sure I'll even watch it, so if you want a more reliable source for an update, check out www.kusports.com.

Hmmm...what else?
As I mentioned on Friday, I've made my plea with management to give me a second chance at outside sales. In the meantime, I really need to close the month with numbers that are as strong as possible. So on that end, keep your fingers crossed for me that I close some deals in the next 9 days.

Didn't win Powerball last night which is the reason for the previous paragraph.

Scoring update...KU is down by 25 with 17:25 to play!

(I wonder if the above scoring update violates the rights of NCAA basketball...you know when they say, "This broadcast is not to be re-broadcast or transmitted without the expressed, written consent of the Kansas Jayhawks." -- just wondering.)

If you have kids (who talk), what's their favorite fast food restaurant and do any of them give alternative names? My boy, J, when asking what's for dinner, proceeds with the following suggestions: McDonald's, Cheeseburger King, Taco Bell, Wendy's, Red Lobster. (Yes, we eat out a lot...shut the fuck up.) Bear in mind that each of those restaurant names starts with a "d" sound as J isn't the best enunciator in the world. I do like the way he calls it Cheeseburger King though.

I've been playing poker online again the last few nights (play money) and tried some of the tournaments. Managed to come in 2nd twice and 4th once in the four tournaments I entered. If I can ever get better, then maybe I'll go play for real in a low-stakes tournament at the local casino.

Haven't read many blogs in the last couple of days, so I'm going to go catch up on some of those now.

Have a great week everyone!

Until Next Time...

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Friday, December 19, 2003

Fun & Frivolity

If you're into finding what your prison bitch name would be on the HBO series Oz.

Found this over on Cornelia's site.

Just enter your first and last name and get your prison bitch name.

I must admit that I'm not real thrilled with mine, which is Gimp.

However, I took the liberty of entering some of my friend's names and was much more satisfied with the results.

Tying back to Dan's earlier suggestion of writing about Don...Don's prison bitch nickname is "Herr Homo."

Dan's? He'd be "The Wood-meister."

George Bush...some of you will love this and I'll get hate mail from the rest..."Fudge Boy."

So go check it out and enter in some other names...see what you can come up with.

Until Next Time...

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YIPPEE!!!

Thank God It's Friday!!! And I have the next week off to enjoy with my family...and man do I need it.

Met with our CEO today to discuss my situation at work...he's my last appeal. It went about as well as I could have realistically hoped for, but it's still a longshot that anything will change. It was definitely worth taking the shot though.

In more enjoyable news...
I did leave work early so we could get to Red Lobster before the crowds hit...got there by 5:30. Now...one would think that you'd beat the rush at that point. Guess what...you'd be wrong.

It was a freaking 40 minute wait!!! (Did I mention that it was only 5-freaking-30???) But my kids had their hearts set on it and I figured by the time we went somewhere else, it'd probably be 30 minutes anyway so we waited it out.

I'm not sure what your opinion on Red Lobster is but I actually enjoy the food. Had the Crab Alfredo tonight and those biscuits are DAMN good!

After dinner, we took the long way home weaving through neighborhoods so the kids could see more Christmas lights.

Then it was back home to drop off everyone but my oldest daughter, K, who had a shool ice skating party. She actually did very well and only fell a few times. Pretty good considering she hasn't skated since her lessons last summer.

Now, though, it's quiet time. All the kiddos are in bed and I'm just kicking back on the couch watching TV. (I LOVE my wireless network!!!)

I'll see if I can think of something more exciting to write about soon. (Dan suggested writing about what a tool Don is and I just don't think I'm prepared to tackle that subject just yet.)

Until Next Time...

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Thursday, December 18, 2003

Man, It's Quiet!

It's been awfully quiet around my blog the last few days...not that there's anything wrong with that.

It did get me to thinking though...why did I create this blog in the first place?

Was it to get readers?

At first, that's what I thought the reason was. But, while it would be nice to have a bunch of people checking out my blog and commenting every day, the reality is that I'm just glad to have somewhere to write and somewhere that I'm actually motivated to write.

Hopefully, someday this blog will deliver the avenue that lets me come up with a great idea for that book I've always hoped to write.

In the meantime, I'm just going to write about everyday crap...my family...my job...my friends...my hobbies...same ol' same ol'.

For those of you who have checked out the site already, I want to say thanks for coming and commenting (if you did) and I hope you continue to do so. If not, that's cool too.

I'll be posting links to more blogs as I find the good ones...which leads me to a question...what's the "typical" blog that you like to read?

A. Humor Blogs
B. Day in the Life Blogs (Male)
C. Day in the Life Blogs (Female)
D. Music Blogs
E. Book Blogs
F. Family Blogs
G. Political Blogs
H. Michael Jackson Blogs
G. Other (if it's other...be specific)

Also, if you have specific topics you'd like to see me write about, please tell me those as well. It's easy to come up with the stuff I want to write about, but sometimes a challenge is nice.

That's it for now.....back to watching (and paying attention to) The Italian Job...so far so good.

Until Next Time...

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Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Dream Job

For those of you that watch ESPN on a regular basis, you may recall seeing promos there, or on their Web site, for the ESPN Dream Job contest.

Basically, they held auditions at sports bars across the country over the past several months trying to find 8 contestants for a reality TV sportscasting competition. The winner of that competition will win an ESPN SportsCenter anchor position for one year.

So this past weekend they made the final cut down to 8 out of the thousands of contestants across the country at an audition in New York City...

And my next door neighbor when I was a kid is one of the 8 finalists.

I ran into his brother today and he told me the good news...I didn't even know he'd tried out. I can say, though, that the guy is phenomenal and I can't wait for the show to air early next year!

That makes two reality show contestants that I know personally, although I know him much better than I knew Melana from "Average Joe" -- we both worked for the Kansas City Chiefs.

If he manages to win the whole thing, it will also make the second person that I know working for ESPN on air.

Meanwhile...I'm just hoping to win the Powerball lottery...and DAMMIT...I forgot to buy a ticket tonight!!!

Until Next Time...

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Another Day

Today has been better than yesterday, but the reality of the situation still stings.

On the positive side, every single one of my teammates has been extremely supportive of me and have offered to give me names of recruiters, review my resume, etc. So at least I have that going for me.

Thanks to Buzz's blog and viewing the comments, I've found some great other blogs and will be blogrolling them when I get a chance.

I've also found a new band to check out thanks to D|King. They're called Tammany Hall NYC and can be found at www.glassrecords.com. They'll be added to my music links soon, but wanted you to have the information now.

In other work-related news...
I need your opinion on something. In the large company we work for, just about everything HR-related is contained in an online system. This includes our vacation tracking system.

In checking out my paycheck for this Friday that shows my vacation balance, the system shows that I have 85 hours of vacation left for the year and we can only carry over 40 hours. Reality on the other hand is that I only have about 64 hours of vacation left according to my boss' records (and her numbers are accurate, by the way).

But here's my thinking...if the SYSTEM is what we go by and I'm going to have a NEW BOSS after the first of the year...should I take a chance and take an extra three or four days and see if I still carry over the full five days for next year? (I know I've just converted from hourly calculations to daily calculations...I trust that you'll all be able to keep up.)

The worst-case scenario is that it will catch up with me and I won't have any carry-over vacation time for next year.

What do you think? Should I take a few more days or be a stand-up guy and only take the one additional day that I need to take without losing it?

Polls are open in the Comments section.

Stay tuned for next time as I announce the newest person I know to be on a reality show.

Until Next Time...

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Tuesday, December 16, 2003

BREATHE...

My attitude has improved at least slightly since earlier today.

Nothing like taking an unexpected afternoon off, meeting a friend for lunch and having a beer knowing you don't have to go back to the office, then going home, hang out with your wife while kids are taking a nap and then taking your kids to see Santa at the mall while everyone else is working to make you feel better.

And, while I'm not going to get my hopes up, I found out that one of my current co-workers was going for the same job at a different company that I was, but she just got a promotion at current company and is staying put. YEA! One less candidate to worry about.

(It was pretty funny...she found out about my job situation and called me to tell me she knew of an opening I'd be a good fit for...then I had to tell her that I've already been talking to them about the position!)

In other news...
I did manage to add some music links to the sidebar of my blog. Some have clips for you to check out, and others don't. Music is very important to me and I take it pretty seriously...unfortunately I can't sing or play an instrument! You probably haven't heard of most of these bands, so I'm just trying to do my part to promote them. If you ARE a fan of one of the lesser known bands, shoot me an e-mail or post a comment!

Thanks to everyone who has stopped by from Buzz's site and a huge thank to Buzz for even mentioning me in a post!

Until Next Time...

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GRRRRRRR

Yep...that pretty much sums up my attitude today.

Just found out this morning that my appeal to keep my current job has failed miserably and that I'm being moved (read: demoted) to a new position.

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm happy just to still have A job with benefits and everything. Unfortunately, it's just not THE job I want.

I've busted my ass for the past 5+ years at this company to get this sales position and now I've lost it. I'll be the first to admit that I didn't have the best year...but I didn't have the worst year either, but somehow, I'm the only one being demoted.

So now I just need to prove how wrong they are in making this move.

My goal is simple...find a new sales job in a short time frame and have a fantastic 2004 and then send an e-mail to my current boss to let her know what they've lost. (I'm sure it will be that simple.)

That's all I have to say for now. I'm sure I'll be posting even more in the near future as the need to vent strikes me.

In the meantime, I'm going to do my best not to let this get me down for the holidays. (Thanks to Don for starting me down a positive path earlier today.)

And, oh yeah, if you're aware of anyone looking to hire salespeople in the Kansas City area (or anywhere else that sales staff can work remotely), shoot me an e-mail with the details!

Until Next Time...

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Monday, December 15, 2003

Thank God It's Over

Fantasy football that is. As expected, I got my ass kicked again this week and I'm just glad it's over and I can focus on KU basketball, Chiefs football and what's going on during the baseball winter meetings.

Went to my favorite pizza place for lunch today...a place by the name of Papa Keno's. Went with my whole team from work and we had a good time. (Despite being a crappy place to work FOR lately, I've got a great group of teammates to work with.) They've got huge slices at this place and I had a pesto slice with chicken and black olive along with some breadsticks topped with mozzarella cheese. It was fantastic!

Today's been actually good from a work perspective...had another almost $40K in sales today and I'm getting ever so close to my quota for the month.

I'm off to train a new guy in a few minutes, so I'll probably check in later.

Until Next Time...

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Sunday, December 14, 2003

Damn, I'm Tired!

And I didn't even do that much today.

Took my boy, J, out for a haircut and then dropped $75 at Target followed by watching the 2nd half of the Chiefs kicking the crap out of the Lions today. Our defense may suck, but with our offense, I'll take my chances against most teams.

Other than that, I really didn't do much of anything except make tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches for dinner. (Try to control your jealousy please.)

Didn't get to watch The Italian Job yet, but we have it until next Saturday...hopefully we can find time to watch it between now and then.

Man...I can barely keep my eyes open. That's it for tonight. Have a good one. (Why is it that I'm most motivated to write when I'm at work and should be trying to sell stuff???)

Have a good one.

Until Next Time...

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Busy Day

Original Saturday Checklist
1. Take K to do Christmas shopping at school
2. Go to KU/Oregon game
3. Watch movie with wife

Revised Saturday Checklist
1. Get up and realize it snowed all night
2. Shovel driveway at 8 a.m.
3. Take K to do Christmas shopping at school
4. Pick up lunch for family before going to basketball game
5. Go to KU/Oregon game
6. Sit through a 20-minute power outage at said game
7. Get home and play in 7 inches of snow with 3 kids for 30 minutes in jeans and hiking boots
8. Take family out for Chinese food
9. Drive around and look at Christmas lights
10. Watch old SNL re-run with wife after kids are in bed
11. Watch 2 Fast 2 Furious (without wife)

Don't you just love it when things go exactly the way you plan them?

Actually, the day was just fine except for the shoveling snow thing...I hate that.

Basketball game was good except the concession lines were HORRIBLE!!! Now, I know that concession stands are rarely efficient at sporting events, but this one had to set a record for crappy service.

We got to our seats about 20 minutes before tipoff and after wading through the masses of people to get to said seats, I was debating making the trek down the 250 steps and whether or not we could be back by tip. I guessed that I couldn't, but friend Don decided to give it a shop. Needless to say, about a minute before tipoff, I see Don coming back up the stairs empty-handed and ranting about what a huge freaking mess it was down there.

In fact, some guy sitting behind us missed almost the entire first half while getting concessions! I'm sure he was happy about spending $35 for a ticket at that point.

The end result of the game was good, though, as KU won by 10. Making the afternoon even better was seeing #1 Florida lose (again...they lost earlier in the week to Maryland) and Missouri lost to Gonzaga. There's not much that makes a KU basketball fan happier than seeing the Missouri Tigers lose! (Although, for the record, I feel sorry for their fans after everything that came out this week about the whole Ricky Clemons fiasco.)

Playing in the snow was a blast. Watching three little kids run around without a care in the world while playing in the snow is one of THE BEST feelings you can get as a parent...being out there with them is even better. I do need to get a pair of snow pants or something because jeans just get COLD when you "fall" down in the snow!

Watched 2 Fast 2 Furious tonight and I enjoyed it. Was it a critical masterpiece? Hell no. But the racing scenes were great and Tyrese (I think that's his name), who played a similar role to what Vin Diesel had in the first one, was pretty good. The stars were the cars though and I will definitely now be playing Need for Speed II on the PC sometime this weekend.

Everyone's in bed now and I need to head that way soon myself, but I'll probably finish watching SlamBall first. In case you don't know what that is, think basketball with trampolines.

Until Next Time...

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Saturday, December 13, 2003

More Blog Problems

I'm sure you guys don't care about the technical side of this stuff, but you know what? It's my blog and I'll write what I want!

Anyway, most of the blogspot sites were inaccessible tonight, so I'm just now getting online to post.

However, since it's about 12:40 in the morning, I'm not going to say much except for good night.

Tomorrow will be a busy day as I take K (my oldest) to her school for her to do her Christmas shopping. They have several people selling things and kids can go in and do all of their shopping in one place. It's pretty cool.

After that, it's off to the KU/Oregon game at Kemper with a group of friends, so I'm really looking forward to that.

Then tomorrow night, my wife and I will hopefully be able to watch one of the two movies I rented tonight...2 Fast 2 Furious (hey...I liked the first one) and The Italian Job.

Like I said before...not too much to say tonight. I'm still trying to get the hang of things with this blog and tend to ramble on a little bit. If anyone has ideas on things for me to write about, please go ahead and post them in the comments.

Thanks all and have a great weekend!

Until Next Time...

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Friday, December 12, 2003

Comment Problems

I'll be curious to see if comments come through today. I tried going to the BlogSpeak link that supports the comments so I could edit my preferences and the page had been "hijacked." It looks like the comments still work. I just can't change anything right now. (All I really wanted to do was stop having each comment e-mailed to me. Yahoo! classified all of the comments as spam, so it was just a waste of time...especially considering that I read comments directly from the site anyway.

Until Next Time...

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Thursday, December 11, 2003

Games: Take Two

Not much going on since earlier today...had some great chicken marsala that my wife made for dinner. After that, played checkers with my oldest and a Blue's Clues card game with all three kids...it was quite entertaining. There aren't too many games that I can play with all three kids so it was pretty fun.

And that's as good of a segue as you're going to get from me.

I've always loved playing games...board games, card games, video games, trivia games...if there's a chance for me to compete, I'll go all out.

Without question, my all-time favorite game is Monopoly. I have about 5 or 6 different Monopoly games that I own and am always looking to expand my collection. Someday, I hope to get the Franklin Mint edition...but it will have to be after the kids are long gone.

Since I only have a handful of people reading this blog right now, I apologize in advance for the fact that I'll be posting something like this again later on as the readership grows.

But my question to those of you now is...what's your favorite game to play? Break it down in to Board Game, Video Game and if there's some other category, let me know that as well. Feel free to list more than one.

If you could, leave them in the Comments section so that everyone can see the results of my informal study.

For me...favorite video game was always Galaga. As far as more current video games though, I love Madden Football on EA Sports. Basically, I can't wait for my kids to get old enough for me to justify buying a game console that I can play too.

For the board games, when I was growing up, I always had to make deals with my brother to get him to agree to play Monopoly. He loved Life, so I'd agree to play two games of Life for one game of Monopoly...stuff like that.

Other games that we played a lot as kids were Payday, Boggle, Scrabble, Battleship, Risk, Uno...I'm sure there are others.

With my kids...we'll play Trouble a fair amount and Monopoly Jr. As they get older and can understand rules a little better, I'm sure there will be a lot more family game time in our house. For now, I just enjoy the time we do spend playing games.

That's enough rambling for now.

Until Next Time...

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Games People Play

Before I dive into the topic o' the day...I need to publicly question the staff at my daughter's school. My daughter, K, is in second grade and today was scheduled to be the big holiday lunch where parents can come have lunch with their kids. Second graders go at 11:10 which is a bit early for lunch, but hey, I won't complain. So I leave work to get there on time, only to learn that because of yesterday's snow day, the holiday lunch is postponed until tomorrow. Apparently, they tried calling everyone who had signed up, but since no one was home this morning, I (obviously) didn't find out until I got there.

Now here's the messed up part...they were STILL calling people when I was there!!! Ummm...don't you think it's a little bit late for that?! (I'm also confused as to why YESTERDAY'S snow day had any bearing whatsoever on TODAY'S scheduled holiday lunch.)

It's not a real big deal in the grand scheme of things, but just doesn't make much sense.

And, besides, now I'll get to have lunch with my daughter for two days in a row. Yea!

On second thought...I'll save my games comment for later tonight.

Until Next Time...(should I start signing off as UNT?)

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Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Wednesday Night Hoops

I'd planned on watching the KU game tonight, but by the time I got the kids in bed and checked the score, KU was already up 56-26 on a Division II team...didn't make much sense to watch the rest. So, instead, I watched Maryland beat #1 in Florida in overtime. They were the 4th or 5th number 1 team this season to lose a game. It seems like no one wants that top spot. (KU lost it last week after losing to Stanford last Saturday.)

This weekend, I'll get to see KU in person when they play Oregon in a game here in KC. It won't be the same as Allen Fieldhouse, but at least I'll get to see them in person. A big thanks to Dansting for hooking me up with a ticket!

Oh yeah...so I'm watching that brief bit of the KU game and this commercial for Wendy's comes on...this thing bugs me to no end. It's the one where the guys get together to play poker and the new guy says, "If I knew a place with burgers open this late, I'd not only drive, I'd buy!"

Can anyone honestly tell me that they'd leave a planned poker game to drive through freaking Wendy's?!?! (I know only a couple of people read this right now, so there's really no need to respond.)

So now the kids are finally in bed...although my youngest girl just came down...AGAIN! Wife and I are sitting here watching Law & Order and I'll probably log on to play some more poker in a little bit.

Until next time!

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A day in the life...

So what's new with me today? I'm so glad that you asked!

Morning started off at 7 when my boy came in with his daily question, "Can I go downstairs and watch TV?" to which I gave my standard response, "Yes...but be quiet."

Realizing it had snowed, I got up to a) see if schools were closed (they were) and b) get an earlier start than usual to make up for the idiots who can't drive on highways that have been plowed (read: everyone but me and my closest friends).

Despite walking out the door at 7:40, I still didn't get to work until 8:45...mainly because I stopped to shovel the driveway. (Oops...forgot about that little detail.) Still beat half my team into the office though, so all was fine.

Work has been pretty crappy for me lately but I won't go into detail about that here...so today's been relatively positive since I got a sale that I was not expecting at all for almost $20,000. Believe me...this REALLY helps me get closer to quota for the month which would make me very happy.

In other news...

I've added another journal to my blogroll on the left today...that of my good friend Dansting. Now...I will warn you, that if you are offended by profanity, Dan's journal may not be the one for you. He's a great guy though and I think you'll be a better person for reading it.

Hmmm...what else? Oh yeah...watched the West Wing edition of "Celebrity Poker" last night (SPOILER ALERT!). My thought after watching that was, "Let me play against those guys!"

There were 5 people playing -- the Prez, Toby (dark haired balding guy with beard and mustache), Allison Janney (press secretary), Timothy Busfield (I don't know who he is on the show) and the blond haired Chief of Staff on the show (whose name I also can't remember...older guy though).

The only one who seemed to have a clue was Busfield...even though he lost. Toby won the whole thing despite being real low in chips at one point. Martin Sheen didn't have any freaking idea how to play the game...it was comical...I think he lost all his chips in the second hand of the show. Anyway...it wasn't near as good as the first one...I only hope they get better from here.

Speaking of poker, I played like crap myself last night at partypoker.com. Could not catch a break. At least it's fake money.

In case you hadn't figured it out by now, I LOVE to gamble. Thank God I have a wife and kids to be responsible for. Otherwise, I'd probably spend all of my time out at the "riverboat" casinos they have here. Fortunately, though, I don't.

That's about it for now...I need to hit the phones again and try to close out some more sales before the end of the year!

Have a great day and I'm sure I'll post again sometime later today.

Please post comments! I need to feel the love (or hate if that's the case). You can also send me an e-mail if you'd like by clicking on the E-mail Me link to the left. (Wasn't that clever of me?)

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Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Oops!

The West Wing edition of "Celebrity Poker" doesn't re-run until 11:00 CT, so I'm watching Arizona beat up on Texas in college basketball right now.

Even though I'm generally a Big 12 fan, I tend to pull for Arizona as long as they aren't playing KU. I have a good friend that went to U of A and he and his wife, who I've known since I was a kid, now live in Phoenix. It will be interesting to see how good Texas is this year without T.J. Ford...right now it seems that they wish he was back.

Other than that, I'm just sitting here listening to the high winds outside and trying to figure out how much snow we'll REALLY get tonight. The original forecast was 2"-4" so I'm guessing it will be less than 2. I could be wrong, though.

That's it for now...I'm off to play some Texas Hold 'Em.

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If You Don't Care About Fantasy Football...

Then consider yourself lucky that I didn't make the playoffs this year. I tend to get a bit obsessive about this and will probably do so for another week or two to see if I can salvage some respect by winning my league's Consolation Bowl.

Now that FF (Fantasy Football) is over, I'll be turning my full attention to the Chiefs playoff run and Jayhawk basketball. If there are any other Chiefs/Jayhawks fans, I'd love to hear from you.

Hell...if there are any sports that you'd like to talk about, I'd love to see your comments on those as well...about the only things I'm not big on are NASCAR and hockey, although I will watch the NHL postseason.

I'm logging off for now and am going to watch "Celebrity Poker" on Bravo in just a few minutes. I'll be back tomorrow (or later tonight) with my thoughts on that show.

Thanks and have a great night!

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Still Grasping At Straws

OK...so I've managed to add a place to comments for this blog, but so far I can't figure out how to get the JP to be a clickable e-mail link...any suggestions from anyone?!

I haven't checked out blogroller yet, but plan on doing that soon so I can cross-link with some of the other blogs/bloggers that I read on a regular basis.

I hope that everyone will bear with me as I get the hang of this.

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Well...here goes nothing! I've been reading blogs for the past six months and thought it was about time I got around to starting one myself.

What can you expect from my blog?
Random thoughts mostly...my interests lie primarily in sports, music, the occasional book, anything pop culture-related, friends and of course my family.

So who am I?
I'm a 30-something guy with a beautiful wife and three great kids...been married for 10 years. I am currently in sales and am always on the lookout for new opportunities. The one thing I've learned during my career is that you need to look out for number one (and in case you didn't know, that's me).

By way of background, as the name indicates, I'm a big sports fan and was a journalism major in college with a desire to go into sports broadcasting...that career ended at the college radio station where I was lucky enough to do some play-by-play calling for one of the greatest college teams in the country, the Kansas Jayhawks! (I realized that there's not much money in early-career sports broadcasting and opted to go the corporate route.) I still love sports and someday hope to find time to do additional broadcasting or even PA announcing for high school or small college sporting events. If it turns into something bigger...that'd be great too.

I love to meet and hear back from other people, so please use the comments section to your hearts content! At some point, I'll try to learn more about this blogging thing and how to link to other blogs I read and, hopefully, they will link back to me.

With that, I'll end this post, and will be back with more in the very near future.

In the words of the immortal Bartle & Jaymes, "Thanks for your support."

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