Saturday, August 30, 2008


Here's an excerpt from a conversation with Cuzzup:

Me: Who is CuzzHuzz's favorite actress?
Cuzzup: I'm not sure, at one time he sorta had a thing for Daisy Fuentes.
Me: Daisy Fuentes? She's not an actress, I'm not even sure she has a vagina. She might have one of those Barbie things going on down there.
Cuzzup: (Laughing hard) That reminds me of when we used to pull off Barbie's limbs and put the arms where the legs go and the legs where the arms go.
Me: Have you ever swapped out limbs between Barbie and Ken?

Thought just occurred, Barbie and Ken had the same genitalia! What the hell does that mean?


The gulf coast, still tormented of Katrina from 3 years ago now must face Gustav. It appears that the one person I know down there is safe and has fled; that comforts me. However, to all who call that area your home and all who've already suffered so much, my thoughts and prayers are with you.

I can't even fathom what must be crossing the minds of those whom are still homeless ... everyone, what a difficult time.
Also, dearest Sprizee - I suppose the last few days haven't been the best. You too have been in my thoughts and prayers.

Friday, August 29, 2008


I was chatting on the phone this afternoon as a measure of procrastination from the work I had started, needed to get done, but wanted no part of. Confronting the inevitable, I took the computer out of sleep mode and reached for a pen when I realized I was unable to fully close my right hand.

I took a gander at my right hand and notice the ring finger was quite swollen and looks super funky, almost dislocated (but evidently not since there was no pain to speak of). I had no idea what to do but thought I should consider speaking with a doctor.

I pulled up a list of local orthopedists after making the assumption this was the proper direction. In total I called about 8 doctor's offices after calling the one orthopedic specialist I knew (he was away for the Memorial day weekend), only one office had a doctor working and he was overbooked and could not see me.

Finally, I decided to take a trip to the emergency room because I knew something wasn't right and I wanted to be smart and safe about it. I was happy that there wasn't a long wait and that the triage nurse was someone I know.

the doctor came in and she looked with confusion asking the obvious questions: Was there any trauma? Do you remember being bitten by an insect? Were you hanging around in a wooded area? Any possible exposure to poison ivy? No, No,No, and No.

"Does this hurt (as she pressed firmly on the swollen, nubby looking, portion of the finger in question)"? Once again, no. "To be honest with you, I have no idea what it is." The leading possibilities are an allergic reaction and a skin infection. The official diagnoses was "swollen joint" and I was told to take some Benadryl and if the condition worsened, to take an antibiotic (using a prescription that was in my "get the hell out of here" packet) and of course, if necessary, return.

As I write this about 7 hours has passed since I left the ER and I would consider the condition "the same". I took 2 Benadryl earlier and they knocked me out good for a while. Oh, well....

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


Pronounced shnitz-en-ka-boodle, a word created by Cuzzup originally to replace the expression "Oh, Shit!" but can be used to express any such highly emotnional experience that must be accentuated with exclamatory verbiage for which Webster's can't provide an adequate substitute.

A note to Brookem, Cuzzup wants you to know that she's been spreading the word "Skrinkering" all about the state of Arizona.

That's all for now.

5 3 0

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Sometimes I Really Hate Goodbye

I know that you needed to do this for you and deep down, of course I want you to have what's best for you. I don't only consider you a colleague but also a friend. You made such a tremendous impact on so many students, your passion for giving everything to what you do will be sorely missed...they are so darn lucky where you are going!

I'm going to miss talking shop, reality TV, and gossiping with you.

Where am I gonna hang now when I have to go over to that campus?

I know, I am selfish, I don't want you to leave but I am your friend, and I care about deserve to be happy and I wish that for you. I hope that if the political tides get difficult that you can let it roll off your shoulder and focus on just being you and doing what you do best, because nobody does it better.

I'll miss you very much and hope you keep in touch.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Ribbon in the Sky

I wrote this poem on this date in 1999. The poem, called "Ribbon in the Sky" was inspired after this girl Tania and I kind of got wrapped around the song of the same name by Stevie Wonder. One night I listened to the song and there happened to be a pen and paper nearby. I picked up the pen, put it to the paper, and this is what came out.

I’m told there is a ribbon floating in the sky above
and that this ribbon represents
the wonder of our love

Drawn from different worlds, two lonely hearts collide
to explore familiar feelings
that come from deep inside

It somehow seems so natural, sometimes too good to be true
but beyond all doubt lies a heart that beats
for what it sees in you

And now you must accept that what’s happening is real
let your heart be your guide
believe in what you feel

This road, though sometimes scary, if you follow from the start
will fill each promise and desire
and lead you to your heart

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Podcast: The Mash Up and More

Topics include:
-My weekend in beer exploration
-My visit to the Museum of Science to see the "Baseball is America" exhibit
-A (very) brief moment in politics
-Peculiar facts about the human body
-An entertaining and crazy "Email Mashup" that ya gotta hear to believe
or listen here is you wish:

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Brief Bits to Hold One Over

  • Working on a podcast, to be released tomorrow
  • Minutes ago, Oliver, my cat, used my chest as a launching pad - I can breathe again
  • Cuzzup's currently on the phone getting a preview of my mash up (you'll all hear it in the podcast)
  • I ate a sandwich at Starbuck's today, it felt odd to do so and while it wasn't the best sandwich I'd ever eaten, it wasn't the worst either. Besides, the Frappuchinomade it all worth while.
  • Only one more week before the insanity of back to school hits - which reminds me, I still have much work to do to prepare for my classes.
  • Finally...

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Edumacational Response

I wanted to discuss my point of view related to yesterday's post as well as respond to those of you who responded. I have a little more inside information about the specific student but have views about the many angles such an email can be viewed from.
In my professional capacity, the part of my professional capacity where my role is as an academic advisor and as an employee and advocate for community colleges, I usually begin by reminding myself of the role we play in higher education. This is easier said than done because knowing the various curriculums as I do, it might seem on the surface that a student whose communications skills are as they seem in that email, impossible for the student to succeed.
It's too easy to read an email like this and make a judgement on just the words as they appear - it's unfair and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't guilty of it a time or two despite my passion for what I do and what education means to me. Fortunately those lapses in judgement only last a second and are often the result of pent up frustrations and 100% of the time they have passed almost immediately or I knew enough to pass the case to someone in a better frame of mind. I've spent many voluntary hours in training session on advising and one of the most important lesson's I've learned is that "one can not advise without listening and one can not listen while judging."
A key role of the community college is to utilize the open enrollment model to identify those students who wish to pursue higher education but are not quite ready yet - we need to get these students up to speed whether it be to improve math skills, reading and writing, language and communication, we need to bring them to college level before they can participate fully in a college curriculum.
For me, the best judge or whether or not a student (or prospective student) is ready to proceed is the student. I will often ask a student I am advising why they are here and what they hope to accomplish. Chances are that in most cases where the student is there by choice and has the desire to move forward, given all the information necessary to make such a decision, then they are usually ready, willing, and able to succeed regardless how or where they measure up - this desire can't be measured alone through the dreaded "standardized testing."
One of the most basic flaws in "no child left behind" is it doesn't take into consideration the student as an individual and the needs of that individual but groups everyone together by a present standard, a mere number that establishes a criteria for everyone without considering who that person is and what it may take to get them there. None of it makes sense considering all of the research and work that has been done in the field of education regarding learning styles and that ones learning style does not necessarily reflect the ability of one to learn, only how they learn it - something not reflected in standardized testing (which in my opinion is the government's way of controlling just how intelligent it wants the general public to be - how's that for a conspiracy theory?).
Looking back at how much I've run on, I'll attempt to summarize: the important lesson about the email I posted yesterday isn't so much it's lack of coherence, it's the reason it looks as it does. It is easy to make a host of judgements about the author by reading it and making assumptions but impossible to respond to in any way without actually considering the author and having a real conversation with them. in my experience, while the inevitable disappointments and shocking realities of some do exist, almost always the depth and complexity of a sincere and genuine student who is capable of every success they wish can be found and that after all, is why we do what we do in this business.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Systems of the Edumacational

This is an email I received from a college student today, it is completely unedited:

Hi, Prof. Deniele,

The school blackboard is can't display the webpage in this noon. How can I open it up? Will be great if I can ues it in this week. Thank you!

I'll pass up the opportunity to ofer my own commentary and simply ask for yours, I am very interested in anything and everything any of you have to say.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The 1000th Post

I sit here and worry about what to type for my 1000th post yet I realize that worry is probably the wrong thing to be feeling. I do however wonder if it was such a wise idea to reflect back after every 100 posts, I could have used some of that material here :). When I started this blog I had no real idea how it would take shape, whether or not it would take on an identifiable personality, or if I'd be able to effectively express myself in this medium.

It all started on a redwood picnic table outside of Gerard farms in Framingham. Amongst the people I was having lunch with was my friend Jill. Jill was telling me about her experience in having recently started her own blog and I was quickly convinced that this was something I wanted to try. Before I continue I want to say to my dear friend Jill, if you are reading this, thank you for the inspiration, please get your butt back to blogging, and most of all congratulations on your pregnancy.

In the early 1980s when I wrote my first poem , I did not do it to become a poet, and later when I started to write (more frequently), at no point did I ever consider myself a writer, rather just someone who happens to write.
At some point when I looked back over more than 20 years of having written I entertained the idea of assembling a book. The original working title was "Poetry in Motion" and the premise was to include some of my poems along with a narrative for each poem that tells the story of how that poem came to be. I always felt that because all of my poems came from my own emotions, that there were others who might have shared those emotions and by including other reflection for each poem, for reader and I can connect in a more personal way. I have sat in front of a word processor at least a dozen times trying to start that book and never got more than a page into it before giving up; I can only assume it is because I am not a writer just someone who has written-and I am okay with that whether or not that is the actual reason.
As I celebrate this 1000th post here on From a Whisper to a Scream, I can proudly say I'm not just someone who blogs but I am a blogger and that was always my intention. When I think about how many words I must have written over the course of 1000 posts, I'm guessing that there would be at least enough for a novel though I won't get cocky, just look back with amazement and pride.
Far greater than the accomplishment of typing a lot of words, the greatest gift I've received from writing this blog was meeting all of you who read it. Getting to know so many of you by reading your blogs and your comments on mine has been both a rewarding and fulfilling experience. So many of you have helped me to learn more about myself, to be a better person, and to accept and understand the importance of saying what you need to say, and even more important listening to what other people are saying. Thank you to all of you, those who read here regularly, those who stop by every so often, those who commented and those who did not, those whose blogs I've read and still continue to read, and everyone ingeneral who inspires me – I love you all for that. I look forward to what is yet to come.

Monday, August 18, 2008

It's Cuzzup's Birthday (and I thought she was losing her mind)

I called Cuzzup this afternoon to chit chat about Metallica but she needed to blow me off because of work (fuddy dud :) So she calls me tonight (she's rambling about organizing picture files right now as I type this) and we start chatting. "I had cupcakes today!" she said. Seemingly coming out of left field with that my first thought was that perhaps Cuzz needs some serious time away, maybe even in need of an evaluation, if you get what I am saying.

Then she started talking about sharing her cupcakes and I'm thinking, yay! Then I had to stop myself and say hey, wait a minute. What the hell is today's date that cupcakes might be relevant - I mean I know my Cuzz might be off the wall a bit but she can't be crazier than I at this point (I don't think).

So I start doing the math in my head remembering that Friday was the 15th of August...that makes Saturday the 16th, Sunday the 17th, Monday the's the 18th, August 18th..."it's your friggin' birthday!!! Happy Birthday Cuzzup!"

I really am so bad with dates. Bad me.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Some Guys Have All The Luck

Rod Stewart Live at the Comcast Center in Mansfield Massachusetts last night.
Knowing there was rain in the forecast, there was a part of me that hoped that opening act Josh Kelley would surrender his set in favor of a miracle, an early start for the headliner. However, after the fact I am glad he played his set. Going into the show I had no clue who Josh Kelley was, not even the fact that he's Katherine Heigl's husband, and after his set I have the desire to listen to more of his music (I've ordered three of his CD's from the library).

Rod Stewart came out following a somewhat funny, somewhat cheesy animated parody of himself as "The Rodminator" and quickly grabbed the attention of the partially rain-soaked crowd (about half the seats in the amphitheater are covered) with "Some Guys Have All the Luck" and several things became clear almost immediately.

Rod Stewart is 63 years old, his average fan base is, well let's just say my age-ish, and he understands how to use his talents. I've seen him twice before, once in the late 80's and once in the early 90's and the rock and roll concert with stacks of amplifiers and trash and vaudeville wardrobe has been left behind to a more mature set design, very clean and the outfits are some form of Rock and Roll conservative, yet smart and effective.

The show Stewart put on last night was very much like a show I'd expect to see in Las Vegas. Some might take this negatively, it shouldn't be. A Las Vegas show is very specifically structured and designed to a target audience, it has some very mechanical aspects and if the performer is as good as Rod Stewart was last evening, you don't see the mechanics of the show, all you end up leaving with is the entertainment value and that for certain is what I left with.

Given all that, I'm not going to go through the set list and complain about what was missing, that's too easy to do with someone whose song catalog dates back four decades. It was a terrible evening to see a concert outdoors and while I could completely talk about how miserable it was to be in the rain the truth is, ultimately it was worth it.

Bush Tours America To Survey Damage Caused By His Presidency

I snatched this from Joy who snatched it from David. This is far too brilliant not to spread it as far and wide as possible.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Podcast: An Essentially Inspired Podcast

NOTE: I Just listened back to the podcast and somehow the backing music vanished in the mix. Not sure what the heck I did but I am not going back to fix it, it really only serves to make the overall sound spectrum more interesting.

Before I turned 30 I was essentially offered a job to teach at the College of the Bahamas and turned it down and yes, I regretted and perhaps still to some degree regret that choice because it wasn't made the way a decision like that should be made. Here's my story.
Or, Listen right here:

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Looking Back - Part 2

A few years before the video in yesterday's post, Melinda and I were working together at the record store and she was living with her boyfriend, who was considerably older and not big on hanging out and clubbing and stuff. Melinda and I were close friends at the time, I wanted more than friendship but she didn't know that at the time and besides, I wasn't about to do that to her boyfriend, who was a good guy.

It was Easter eve and Melinda and I were going out to a club. I can't remember the name of it but it had four floors, a disco floor, a new wave floor, an R&B floor, and I can't recall the last one. It's one of those clubs where they line you up outside and discriminate who gets in based on some thugs opinion of how you look (or how well you grease his palm). I know that I was gonna get rejected but fortunately I was with Melinda who was dressed, shall we say, appropriately (spiked pink hair and frilly spandex went a long way in those days).

I remember it being a wild night, we closed the joint somewhere between 3and 4 am. I also recall meeting this dude with a mohawk that was literally about 2-3 feet high. Of course my first question to him was "How do you get your hair to stay up like that?" His answer, "K-Y Jelly!!!"

After we closed down the place we ran about the city and got ourselves into situations that we shouldn't have, but it was fun. We ended up in a diner around 5and this guy came over and started chatting with us, all the while I thought he was trying to move in on Melinda until it became evident it was I he was hitting on (welcome to New York City nightlife). Anyway, we got out of there and headed back home and I saw Melinda to her house and that's when it got awkward.

She and I walked into her and her boyfriend's apartment at 8 am on Easter Sunday(of all days) after being up, out, and partying all night, looking and smelling as such and there he is in bed trying to pretend it was all okay with him when clearly the look on his face said otherwise. I bailed quick.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Looking Back - Part 1

I can't believe I came across this video. I was close, very close to the guitar player in this video - the girl with the flying V. Melinda and I met at Titus Oaks Records on the corver of Ocean Avenue and Avenue U in Brookyn, New York. Check out the video, I have a story or two to tell.

Alright, now loyal readers have seen the photos posted here of my "hair band" days and many of you know of my fondess for music. You now know I worked in a record store at one point and let's face it, there has to be a story or two in it from here don't you think? I'm gong to leave you hanging for now with the images you may recall of me with the long hair and those impressed upon you by this video. The stories will come, you wait and see.

With love.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Honeybaked Lunchbox

There's a retail store that is relatively invisible on the landscape of route 9 in Framingham with the exception of Easter and one other holiday which I can't recall though I think it's Christmas. On these two holidays, it requires several police details to sift people safely and orderly into and out of the Honeybaked Ham Co. while maintaining the flow of traffic along route nine. It has such an effect on traffic that it you are heading eastbound, you may need to allocate an additional hour or more to your drive time.
A few days ago, a colleague came by my desk and mentioned that he went to Honeybaked Ham for lunch which at first confused me because I wasn't even aware you could do such a thing. He mentioned they made these "lunch boxes that included a choice of sandwich (with condiments), a bag of chips, and a couple of cookies.
Always looking for something different for lunch and a good value to boot, the following day I convinced another colleague to tag along with me for a try at one of these boxed lunches, so off we went.
From the moment we walked in I knew it wasn't going to be a typical trip for lunch. The lady working, whose name I can't recall so I'll refer to her a Rosie, was seemingly stunned to see anyone, much less two people at the same time entering the store. "Oh, well Hello there! Welcome to The Honeybaked Ham Company, my name is Rosie. How can I help you?"
I responded, "we'd like to order some of your boxed lunches." "How many are you interested in ordering?" asked Rosie. I said, "Well, I would like one and I believe my friend here will enjoy but one as well." Rosie seemed thrown again at such a small order and poorly hid behind her response by saying, "oh....well certainly. Did you know what kind of sandwiches you were interested in?" Again, I did the talking first, "I'm going with what makes you famous there Rosie, I will have the ham." My colleague chimed in at this point, "I too will have the ham." A flustered Rosie reached for a menu and read off the ingredients in the ham sandwich to ensure that we were content with out selections and her interpretation of those selections. Once we both affirmed, we just waited around and observed while Rosie went to work.
Rosie was moving around with much hesitancy appearing uncertain and flustered so much that a large man who I assumed was the manager (assumed for no other reason that he had a name tag and appeared more together and somewhat managerial in that moment) came out from what appeared to be one of half a dozen or so large refrigeration doors to assist Rosie. While I noticed a roll had to be sacrificed due to a mess up on Rosie's part, the boxed lunches came together and it was time to pay and go.
Rosie brought the first box over and I was waiting there in front of the register and said, "I'll take the first one!" She said "okay then, that'll be $8.07 please." I handed Rosie a $20 bill and she started punching away at the keys erroneously typing in $10 as the amount tendered which threw here into a tailspin unable to calculate that she only needed to add $10 to the $1.93 amount showing for change on the register.By the time she figured all this out, smoke beginning to rise from her frazzled hair, she was poking through the change compartments and it was clear again they aren't equipped for regular retail trade as there was what appeared to be less than $1 and certainly not enough change to make the 93 cents portion of my change. So, with no intention of totally fucking with Rosie's remaining sanity I sorted through the rare occurrence of change in my pockets and while lacking a nickel managed a dime and two pennies. It clearly cost Rosie a year or two off her life to calculate the nickel she'd need to return to me and to make matters so much worse, I found an opportunity to really have some fun and intentionally fuck with her.
On the radio was the song "Hero" by Enrique Iglesias and just as she was in the midst of flipping her lid calculating my change, I belted out the chorus to the song at the top of my lungs. far louder than the radio. She had no idea what to make of it and for that matter, neither did my colleague.
We finally got both our lunches and left. Both were quite good though my colleague mentioned that they left the paper on the slice of cheese which happened to be inside his sandwich. I did ask him if he had any clue that I was intentionally fucking around when I started to sing and her didn't. He said, "I wasn't sure what you were doing. I thought maybe it was just a catchy tune and you just got into it."
Oh, the fun.

Saturday, August 09, 2008


Here are some of the things people curious about what "530" is all about and why I randomly (or is it random) place it in my blog posts have guessed it means:
  • My favorite time of the day
  • A birth date of someone
  • A death date of someone
  • A high score on a game
Interestingly, every curiosity has resulted in the 530 being interpreted as a single number (five hundred thirty) as opposed to the possibility that it may represent two numbers (5 and 30 or 53 and 0) or even three separate digits. Here are some other guesses:
  • A consecutive streak of sorts (530 straight days...)
  • A quantity (number of movies seen in a time period, number of reality television episodes, number of hours of TV watched last year, etc.)
  • The cost of something I may be saving for
  • Number of items on my DVR
  • Number of songs on my iPod
  • Of or related to the 530th song on my iPod
I am loving this! I got the idea to have a mystery number from several classic mystery numbers most notably the number "33" on the back of a bottle of Rolling Rock beer.
I can tell you that the number does have significance (to me) and that is as far as I will go. after all, how can a mystery number be a mystery number of I give up the mystery ?

Friday, August 08, 2008

Finish This Sentence

I saw this on Essentially Me's blog and thought, fun. Turns out it was not so much fun as it was introspective, sometimes in a painful way. Perhaps I needed to do this and running into it wasn't an accident. Either way, here it is:

i am: tired, not just physically.
i think: therefore I am (couldn't resist, thanks Descartes).
i know: there are far too many questions and not nearly enough answers.
i want: to make a difference.
i have: lots of ideas.
i wish: I had the time to play.
i hate: the things that taint the beauty of the world that God created.
i miss: my parents.
i fear: far more than I should.
i feel: like having a large quantity of sushi.
i hear: Brad Paisley, the CD is playing through the computer I am typing on.
i smell: something citrusy.
i crave: the spontaneous energy I once had and am not convinced is gone. Just dormant.
i search: for the answers to all those questions I mentioned previously.
i wonder: sometimes if I really matter to anyone.
i regret: that I actually regret anything.
i love: that I can often find something I feel or think about in almost every song I hear.
i ache: and I wish I didn't.
i care: about you.
i always: wash my hands after using the bathroom.
i am not: always subtle.
i believe: in the power of prayer.
i dance: when I've had a few; actually enough to not realize I am about to dance.
i sing: in the car then try to cover it up when I "get caught" at red lights by making believe I am yawning or talking into a cell phone.
i don't always: think before I speak if I am speaking out of anger.
i fight: the demons of anxiety.
i write: because sometimes it is the only way I can express what I am feeling.
i win: almost never.
i lose: my mind when a student has no idea what their social security number is.
i never: enjoy going to the airport.
i confuse: the confusion in the confusing corner of my world.
i listen: to music because it makes me feel better.
i long: for a peaceful, happy, worry free existence..
i can usually be found: planted in front of a television watching a reality show.
i am scared: of that which frightens me.
i need: to know that I matter to someone other than myself.
i am happy about: the fact that this questionnaire is over, it was far more difficult than it looked when I started.

Podcast: The Journey to the Boss

Hear the entire story how I managed to get tickets to see Bruce Springsteen on a night that the weather, the fans, and Springsteen himself helped make memorable. And, hear about the show itself as well.
It was well after midnight by the time this was completed and posted so I just didn't have the time or energy to do a full listen before publishing. This morning, I listended through and am not overly happy with the end result.
25 minutes is a long time to be listening to something and unless it has some captivating elements, it can be tough to endure. While there are moments where I think this podcast is fun to listen to there are also those that could have ben left out. The first 15 minutes tells the story of how I ended up with tickets to an event I had completely forgot was happening and the experience of getting into the stadium to discover the awesomeness of our seats and ticket holder's privileges. After listening I wished I had revised the whole thing down to about 5 or 10 minutes tops.
The last ten minutes I use to take you through the set list and comment on the performance - not much fluff and in fact may have been a better idea for the entire podcast leaving out the first 15 minutes of material altogether.
Either way, it took two takes and hours of work and I needed to let it go so now that it is gone, it's time to move ahead. Peace...

Hey, if you wish, you can listen to the podcast right here on this page:

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Making Choices

Briefly edited Thursday morning in a more awake state:

Tonight I had the chance to get my podcast complete or speak with my brother (whom I haven't spoken to in a few months). I opted to speak with my brother, I needed to talk to him and he needed me, we spoke for two and a half hours.

I did re-record the podcast and need to assemble it so I expect it to be ready tomorrow. I did finish the CD I was working on so I do feel like I am making some progress.

Egan, I got your messages and would love to hear more about Starbucks strategy given your inside knowledge. The consumer in me is having a hard time not being able to get the product I want. Of course, I recognize my opinion on the matter is that of the selfish consumer and not of the coporate strategist and I have a great deal of respect for how you are able to put things into perspective regardless of whether or not we agree on something.

I need to get sleep. Goodnight everyone.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

In Bullet Form...

  • I think I have a final product on the CD project I've spent alot of time on these last few days, that is from the production end...time for packaging (got the ideas ready so it shouldn't be so bad).
  • My uncle in Arizona is in the hospital having some ticker issues, please pray for him.
  • I recorded the audio for a podcast and after working on putting that together I am scrappng it, it simply isn't up to par, I actually bored myself listening to it. I do a retake tomorrow and see if I can make it happen.
  • I am testing a piece of hardware called Magic Jack. It's essentially a VOIP device that allows you to make calls throught the US and Canada for $20 per year, that's it.
  • The delightful Joy has reinvented herself in the form of a new blog called Babble On - give it a look-see.
  • Brett Favre is a complete ass.
  • What the F is with the weather here? It's odd even for here.
  • Happy 1st birthday to Anna!
  • Bruce Springsteen was great as always on Saturday (the podcast will cover this in greater detail).
  • I am still addicted to Mob Wars.
  • 530

Monday, August 04, 2008

Coffee Talk

NOTE: To those of you expecting a review of sorts or information about the Bruce Springsteen concert, it is forthcoming as a podcast. However, right now there just is no time to make that happen as I am mixing/mastering a CD project that must take precedence along with paying bills and a few other necessary household chores I've neglected lately; not to mention I've had about 12 minutes sleep in the last few days. In lieu of the expected post, here is an alternate post:
When I was in Vegas, I went to at least half-a-dozen Starbucks in hopes of acquiring a refreshing decaf mocha frappachino (with whipped cream of course). The troubling response I received at each one was "I'm sorry, we've discontinued the decaf frapps." While angered, I tried to put things into the perspective of the city I was in and thought perhaps there isn't nearly as large a market for decaffeinated beverages in such a city. This doesn't make the decision any more logical to me, but at least it seemed to be enough of an explanation to help me get over it for the time being (that and the fact that there were loads of $1 margaritas and $2 Heinekens to take my mind off the subject).

Fast forward to today, one day short of a week since I have been in Vegas and the frappachino cravings are stirring about as I am out to lunch. I drive on over to a local Starbucks a order a "grande decaf mocha frapp with whipped" once again to be denied having been told that they no longer have decaf frapps. Having had to draw my own conclusion in Vegas, I felt compelled to ask for the actual reason for such an irresponsible and ridiculous decision. Unfortunately, the one that I got from the horse's mouth was far stupider than the one I concocted on my own.

"Now that we have our new Vivanno drinks, there isn't enough room in our refrigerator." WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU JUST SAY? I don't even want to take this any farther, that is just stupid. Most people that drink decaf because they must, for health reasons. Clearly it's within their right to simply discontinue decaf beverages, perhaps from a business perspective is just isn't practical to use the space designated to decaf for the percentage of profit it represents but you know what, how about just saying it that way. While I won't be any less pissed at least I won't think you are a complete jackass making up ridiculous excuses that make no sense. Quite frankly, Styrofoam seems a little more tolerable today.

Now that I've got that off my chest and mentioned Styrofoam, here's an update on my quest to speak to the CEO of Dunkin Donuts regarding the persistent use of Styrofoam instead of paper and/or eco-friendly cups:

I spoke to an executive assistant on several occasions that refused to allow her voice to be recorded and requested that her name not be printed in any form on my blog. There was a lot of runaround and a lot of getting bumped from one executive to another regarding who was best to respond to my inquiry. Quite frankly, I was surprise that I didn't just get a fairly immediate canned response and the actions that were taken lead me to assume that these inquiries have probably come from eco-conscious organizations. Ultimately, after about a dozen phone calls and a lot of runaround the response I got translated to me the same way that my pal Egan expected – Styrofoam is cheaper. Less expensive cups equal greater profits. It seems far too narrow minded for a reasonably large American corporation but then when I consider Exxon-Mobil on the grander scale I guess while pathetic and sad, it isn't all that hard to believe and it makes me wonder if these organizations should work they way from the bottom up getting the franchisees involved in the fight and ultimately forcing the corporate hand. Perhaps I am dreaming.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Calling All Blogger Buds

I am currently considering a brief escape into NYC the last week of August for a day or two. One reason is to visit with my old high school friend Annmarie. My other main goal is to indulge in a frozen hot chocolate at Serendipity's.
So, any of my blogger peeps planning to be in NYC that week? How about interested in making a plan to be there that week? Let's write the headline, "Blogger's Meet in NYC!"
Lemme know.

Princ(ess?) Springteen Fan on the Loose

Here's a super goofy photo taken on the Las Vegas Strip one afternoon.

I am super excited about seeing Bruce Springsteen (and the E Street Band) tonight especially since it all happened in the last couple of days. When this leg of the Magic Tour was announced and I has seen that the return to this area was in a football stadium (Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots), I really didn't have much interest as I have gotten to the point where I just don't fancy the super colossal venues. However, a couple of days ago, a colleague asked if I was interested in tickets and because I do love Springsteen so much, I at least entertained the inquisition with one of my own, "How much?" "$250 for the pair." "No chance, that's way more than I can swing especially for a stadium show."

I kind of left it at that, for about ten minutes, until I decided to peruse Craigslist. Lo and behold, there were numerous offerings in the present range I selected of $2 through $100. I gandered at many of them, alerted my colleague that her asking price wasn't competitive, and then kind of ignored it - for about ten more minutes.

Eventually over the next 24 hours my interest was enhanced at set lists and reviews of the shows at Giant's Stadium over the previous few days and my pal John (who I really wish was able to join me for this) I had made the decision that if I could get the seats I want at the price I want, I was all in.

A number of inquiries, offer rejections, and further inquiries led me to a pair of seats in the Fidelity Clubhouse of all places located in an area where I will actually be able to see the stage and not rely only on the large TV screens and all for my price range.

I'll be attending the show with the son of Mike Chepiga, another Chris who might be the largest (not physically) fan of The Blue Man Group on the planet, a fan of AMD microprocessors, yet still - a good guy. Stay tuned tomorrow for a full review of the show.