Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Don't Fret My Pets

I'm jet setting to Dallas for my one business trip of the year tomorrow. Whoopee. I have one of those jobs where I get to go to exotic places like Birmingham, Baltimore and Dallas. Are you jealous?

The bad news is that I'll be having a crazy end of week with work and other assorted junk, so I'll be MIA for a little bit. The good news is that when I return, I'll have a brand new blog on wordpress! I like some of the wordpress features better than Bloggers, specifically the little stalker button that allows me to see who's reading (yes, all three of you). I think it will help boost my ego a bit. I even figured out how to move my posts and your comments over, although this one might not make the cut.

Anyways, have a good week, Go Patriots, Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy, and all that good junk. See you on the flip side!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

The End of an Era

This weekend, I went up to Manchester, NH to run a half marathon. I went to college at St. A's in nearby Goffstown, so I know the area fairly well (technically, I know how to get to assorted bars & chain restaurants really well, I just wing it around the rest of Manch-Vegas). Driving from the Expo to the hotel in the pouring rain (I swear we get a Nor'easter the day before every big race I run. I could be a weather girl), I noticed that "The Balls" is gone!

"The Balls" was never called "The Balls" while I was in college. It was called the "Rack 'Em Up Lounge." Honestly, I'm not sure if or when it was actually called "The Balls." Or why, for that matter. Its probably because of the numerous pool tables, or it may be simply because it was just so call (you know: the balls).

My first trip to The Balls was the first Thursday of Freshman year. I wore jean shorts, sneakers, and a tee shirt I bought from a frat boy. I danced until I was a sweaty pig, and watched my new roommate dance on speakers. Shockingly, I didn't pick up any guys, and she was pregnant 7 months later.

The Balls was owned by George & Hannah. George had a loud raspy voice, and yelled at anyone who sat on his pool tables or drank too much. Hannah was his wife who swore like a sailor. They were the perfect couple. They were an institution around St. A's. Career & Employment Services once actually put up signs reading " If you don't want to end up like George at The Balls, come to CES for career guidance."

The Balls was huge. It had tons of pool tables that we usually just tried to sit on, two bars, and a dance floor. Oh, and, later on, a sex toy shop where George & Hannah's dog would nap. They had drink specials, and really strong Long Island Iced Teas. And Thursday was college night, so you could get in if you were under 21 (it probably wasn't a coincidence that there was always a handful of sketchy locals at the bar on college night). You were supposed to be at least 18, but George only checked your license if you were drinking. He wasn't happy when I announced to him, three weeks into the school year, that I was turning 18 that night. Oops.

If you were under 21, upon entering at the jacked up cover charge, you received a giant X on each hand, courtesy of an Industrial Sharpie. Those Xs stayed on for days, no matter how hard we tried to wash them off in the bathroom. A quick glance around Chem Lecture on Friday morning would tell you exactly who went out the night before, as the Xs were either still on their hand, or, for the unfortunate few who slept with a hand under their cheek and drooled, on their face.

The Balls was always our fallback Thursday night hangout. Some nights we were dying to go there, especially when a fraternity was hosting the night. We could usually convince the DJ to play Madonna for us if we knew him. And you could always count on hearing "Pour Some Sugar on Me." There was a Dunkies and an ATM that gave money out in singles next year. It was the perfect place for a bunch of Catholic college kids with hard classes and no boys allowed in their rooms to unwind after a long week of Humanities Seminar.

So, now a St. A's institution is gone. And I'm left to wonder: where will college kids go to drink underage? Is there somewhere else they can shamelessly grind with co-eds on the dance floor? What parking lot will frat boys use to beat the crap out of each other after a night of drinking? Are George and Hannah happy? Did they open a bigger sex toy shop? I may never know.

Farewell, Rack 'Em Up Lounge.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

This Blog is Brought to You by the Letter P and the Number 19

Tuesday, for the first time since I last watched Sesame Street, I watched a show on PBS. And I liked it!

For those of you who know what I do for a living, it might come as a surprise to you that I never watch public television or listen to public radio. Its not that I don't believe PBS offers fine, educational and uplifting programs, I'm just usually not personally interested in them. And I don't really feel badly about it. PBS seems to aim its programming at the under 5 or over 50 crowd, neither of which I fall into. I learn enough about the shows by proofing letter after letter asking you for money to support them to know that I won't really like them. If they start airing something like "Heck's Kitchen with Executive Chef Oscar the Grouch," I'll be sure to tune in!

The show I watched tonight was NOVA. They did an episode on 12 non-runners who ran the Boston Marathon. It not only showed the runner's progress throughout the 40 (!) weeks of training they went through, but it also discussed the physical and physiological aspects of running and how it affects the body. It was actually interesting, and I really enjoyed the show for even more value than just looking for myself in the crowd of runners. The end was heartwarming as well, watching these people cross the wet finish line with such an amazing sense of satisfaction on their faces. Its a nice reminder that the human body can do amazing things. Could someone remind my body of that fact when it wants to accomplish the un-amazing feat of eating candy on the couch all night?

So, that was my first PBS show in over twenty years. I'd watch more, but when the hell am I supposed to go to the bathroom if there are no commercials? Could you all please donate some cash to your local PBS station so they can afford to buy some ads? Thanks!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Again

I know, I know. I'm a bad little blogger.


So, what's new? Oh yeah, as DuJane pointed out, a little team called the Boston Red Sox won the World Series. Again.


Its so weird to say that. Again. Like its no big deal. It is a big deal, its just not as big of a deal as it was 3 years ago. Don't get me wrong, its always nice to win. But this year seemed so easy. We had no heartbreak. No Aaron Fucking Boone. No coming back with walkoff after walkoff from being down 3-0. No spraying champagne in Yankee Stadium. We just kept winning, right from the beginning. Sure, the season had some bad moments, some scary moments, but we always looked good.


Not that I need a reason to be happy, but since I can't use the "Its been 86 years!" reason, I came up with a few more:




  • I don't have to break my promise to J: that if the Rockies won, we'd name our first born son Yorvit. This allows us to have the young "Jason William Kevin Curt Bronson Orlando Manny Papi" as we promised each other in '04.





  • I had a friendly bet with my friend Kay in Colorado. So instead of stuffing a Pilgrim into a FedEx box like I would have had to do if the Rockies had won, I am anxiously awaiting all the splendors that Colorado has to offer (with the exception of Rocky Mountain Oysters).




  • Free Tacos for America!








  • You gotta love signs like this:







(Sign Reads: Garko was right. Champagne does taste just as good on the road)

  • And this:







  • And, lastly, we can't see this white boy dance enough:




(okay, maybe we can!)



Congratulations Sox!





Monday, October 8, 2007

Finally.

It seems as though fall has finally come to New England. Thank Jimmy.

I really like the change of seasons. I can't imagine living somewhere where the weather is the same every day. Like "LA Story" where Steve Martin was a weatherman in LA. He wanted to take a vacation, but had no one to cover for him, so he pre-recorded himself saying it would be 75 and sunny. Of course, the week he was on vacation, LA was hit with crazy rain storms and low temperatures.

I can find something I like in all the seasons. I love the first snowfall of winter, cute hats and snuggling up with hot cocoa. I love that first warm day of spring, when wearing short sleeves without a jacket in the morning totally makes your day. I love sitting in the beach in the summer, or jacking up the A/C on really hot days to watch movies & grill hot dogs.

But I think fall is the best season. You've still got warm days, and no snow. The warm days are just (usually) not unbearably hot. The cool days don't cause your teeth to chatter, but do allow you to whip out the cute new sweaters you bought with your birthday money. Apples taste great, apple pies taste even better. Pumpkins are waiting to be carved, and Halloween candy is waiting to be eaten.

And, of course, baseball playoffs. The Sox have made it to the ALCS, and we're waiting to see if we have the Yankees or the Indians as an opponent. If it is the Yankees, they will be without the Rocket. Which I think is a good thing for the Yankees.

So, how did I celebrate the first day it feels like fall after a hot, humid week? By waking up and running a 10K in the rain. It was good running weather, just a bit wet, and I was rewarded for my efforts with a free Pumpkin Spice Latte from Fourbucks. Ah, fall.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Happy Days

Last weekend was the Komen Race for the Cure in Boston. Once again, Team GDT was the largest non corporate fundraising teams, per capita. We raised over $87,000, which is more than we raised in the past three years combined.

We also had a fabulous weekend together, which isn't easy to accomplish with 50 women. But we all seemed to get along and just have a good old warm and fuzzy time together. The alcohol helped!

The best moment of the weekend was watching the survivor's victory lap prior to the race start. I don't know how I've missed this truly moving experience the past few years. Its simply amazing to me how strong these women and their families are. I think the part that touched me the most was the man who pushed his wife in her wheelchair, not only for the lap, but for the entire race. That's true love.

The happy day from this weekend was that the Red Sox clinched the AL East for the first time since 1995. Yay! I missed the celebration, as I was busy drinking beers by a bonfire and biting my tongue for various reasons. But we were lucky enough to go to Fenway for the next to last game of the season. It meant almost nothing, but we won, the Indians lost, and we got home field advantage. Double yay! The postseason is never easy. I'm off to the store for Tums & Coffee!