Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Flat Tires

Loved the quote in today's paper along the lines of "first the snow, then the winds, when are the locusts coming?" It was included in some article about how bad the potholes are around town - and they're bad. I've been enveloped by a few craters already, and I think the roads have only started to show them in the past week. I can't say for sure of the potholes had anything to do with it, but yesterday, I got two flat tires on two cars, almost simultaneously. Here's how it went down:

I've been working out of Starbucks, Borders, etc. for almost a week now, as the wind storms knocked out my phone lines last week and they have yet to be restored, so I have no DSL - and an Internet connection is pretty vital to my business (technology newsletter publisher). Before I left yesterday morning, I noticed the perhaps the pressure in the drivers' side rear tire was low, but let it go and figured I'd check it later. I ended driving farther than I usually do, as I wanted to try out the coffee/art shop on Presque Isle. Great atmosphere and Internet connection, but no cell phone service, I drove up to Borders. Leaving Borders around five, I noticed again that the tire looked low. But then I also noticed I was parked in a hole, so I dismissed it. I'm driving down Peach Street when my phone rings. My wife says she has a flat in a parking lot at 11th and French, down by my daughter's dance studio. As soon as I hang up, I woman behind me at a light starts honking her horn and sticks her head out the window to yell that my tire is going flat. I'm about two blocks from home. I thank her (she really was a big help) and drive home to drop off the car. I grab my mother-in-law's van, who is at the house watching the baby, and head down to change the tire on the van.

Now, several things worked out well in this scenario, if you can believe it. That woman (who really was a big help) telling me about the flat caused me to stop home, which enabled me to change my clothes. This was important because changing the van tire really was a bitch. I practically needed to stand on the wrench to loosen the lugnuts, and the spare was practically corroded onto its placeholder. Anyhow, it took me at least and hour to execute the change and then put air in the spare, but we managed to get home safely. Where, of course, my other flat was waiting. Had a much easier time with that change, part of the reason being no doubt that I was in my driveway and could work at my liesure.

So, I'm currently driving around with two mini-tires on my vehicles just waiting to shipwreck in another pothole.



Monday, February 16, 2009

A-Fraud and Torre

As I Yankees fan, I feel obliged to comment on these two way overplayed topics:
1. A-Fraud has slipped into the O.J. sphere-psychotic athlete who is tremendous on the field, but a complete louse off of it. If you get a chance, and last I saw it was available on, watch A-Rod's interview with Peter Gammons. It was fascinating. He really came across as having some serious psychological issues. Of course, there were the wildly exaggerated accusations he apparently threw at the writer of the story - including stalking. Also, his PR people, clearly gave him an agenda, which he bungled. He was obviously told to admit he fucked up, which he did, but then he kept qualifying it. It reminded me of the Happy Days episode, in which the Fonz couldn't utter the word "sorry." He kept stuttering on the "soorrr...." A-Rod transparently declared that he expected to be treated like Andy Pettite while acting more like Barry Bonds..
2. Torre is a baseball manager - not a Nobel Laureate. That's about all I have to say about that. People criticizing him set their expectations way too high...



Thursday, February 12, 2009

Urine Therapy

Has anyone ever heard of this or tried it? Apparently it involves drinking about a cup of urine every morning and is supposed to be wonderful for healing various ailments, including ulcerative colitis, which I have been diagnosed with. I can't seem to find any sound medical treatises on it posted on-line, and would like to consult with someone locally who might be knowledgable on this. Apparently, it's fairly widely used in some Eastern countries (or maybe this is a myth), and starting to catch on somewhat in Europe. From what I understand, a friend of mine, whose opinion I respect very much, has a friend that has used it very successfully to treat colitis.

Yes, it seems off the wall, but I'm not necessarily against off-the-wall ideas, as long as they produce sound results. Any insights on why this will or will not work, are appreciated. And I would also love to here a medical practioners' scientific opinion.



Thursday, February 05, 2009

Beer in Brussels

Yes, I was buying beer from a man Brussels, but he certainly wasn't six-foot-four... Anyhow, they have an intesting way of serving their suds. Like other European countries I've been to, the draught beer is extremely fresh, so most people drink it, unlike the U.S., where bottles seem to be the preferred medium. Between me and the guy I was drinking with, we tried about five different beers, and each of them was served to us in a different shaped glass - with the logo of the bier on it. And this wasn't in some hoyty-toytee tourist trap, it was a local pub that my friend took me to. Reminded me of a bigger city/European version of the Greengarten Tavern.

I just thought that it was interesting that apparently to help you fully enjoy your beir, they serve different kinds in different style glasses... Yeah, I guess they take their beir seriously over there. However, I'm not quite sure about their entertainment industry. I was there for a conference, and some ex-New York City kid actually attempted to entertain us on stage by doing a serious imitation of Michael Jackson's Billy Jean dance. Yeah, he was good, but it's really not 1989 anymore and Michael Jackson is known child-molester. I felt like I was watching O.J. highlights or something.