Friday, November 30, 2007

Yes, It is My Birthday

As Eddie Murphy so adequately stated in Coming to America...."Yes, it is my birthday."

Well, my 20s are gone and my 30s are here. Unfortunately, I'm working today and going to a bunch of meetings when all I wanted to do today was play videogames and watch Season 2 of Entourage. You can see my maturity level has risen exponentially now that I'm in my 30s, huh?

I thought a lot about my 30 year old Birthday blog and while I really don't want to be completely self serving, I wanted to write a few lines about what I did in the first 30 years of my life. Hopefully this is only Chapter 1 of the 3 Chapters of my life. 30 down...and 60 to go...

In the first thirty years of my life...

  • I wrote two short stories named The Heist and Freshmeat and never finished either of them.
  • From the ageds of 15-25, I wrote over 500 poems to woo the ladies

  • I met and interviewed Larry Bird, Teddy Atlas, Jim Harrick, Jalen Rose, Bill Rafferty, Gary Williams and a host of student athletes and college coaches.

  • I graduated from the University of Maryland; the only college I ever wanted to go to.

  • I've made great friends and I've lost great family members.

  • I saw one of the greatest games in Yankees and maybe baseball postseason history when Aaron Boone hit a blast off Tim Wakefield in the bottom of the 11th inning of Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS.

  • I was alive for 6 Yankees World Championships and 2 Giants Superbowl Championships.

  • I have worked at Davy's Hot Dogs, Bill Clinton's White House, the US Naval Academy, Ketchum PR, Weber McGinn PR, SheaHedges Group, Schoor DePalma, H&G Public Affairs and a score of summer temp jobs.

I've loved and lived a lot and I know that I still have a whole lot living to do. And I'm going to work hard as hell to make the next 30 years even better than the last 30.

Thanks to my wife, my family and my awesome friends for making the first 30 years of my life truly memorable.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Great Experience Today

I took an awesome Franklin Covey course today about setting priorities and really came out of it with a lot of helpful tips on how to prioritize and put importance on the people, tasks and other things in my personal and professional life.

My boss has been really stressing me out lately and after taking this class, I'm definitely going to use the lessons learned from this class to say to him the next time he pisses me off:

"Well, I locked the Sunshine Square deal yesterday, so now I have them helping with the arbitration, and I'd appreciate it if you let me handle my own team, and don't get on my ass every time I'm trying to do something."

Anyone get the movie reference there?

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Entertain Me...With American Gangster.

I aided and abetted a criminal tonight.

My wife's friend brought over a bootleg copy of American Gangster tonight and we were totally excited to watch it as we were already planning on going to the movies this week to see the movie that everyone has been talking about. Guess, that is pretty good evidence of the effect that bootlegging and Bittorrent has on Hollywood. you might expect, the movie wasn't everything we thought it would be. For the first hour or so, the movie was just okay. I really couldn't tell where it was going and everyone else seemed to be equally confused by the movie...then about an 1 1/2 hours into the movie, it completely stopped. I'm not sure what happened to it. I guess it wasn't worth it to watch a bootleg copy of American Gangster.

For the kids out there, it's wrong to steal. It's BAD!!!

Anyway, I might watch the second half of American Gangster when it comes out legally on DVD, but I totally wasn't enthralled with the first part of it tonight.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Happy Birthday to Smelmooo

Happy Birthday to my boy Smelmooo. It's not every day that someone turns 50. Congrats buddy.

Giants Take Down God Led Lions

Why God! Why did you let Jon Kitna lose to the Giants! Especially when he clearly believes that the Lions are a better team than the Giants! Why have you forsaken Jon Kitna, God!

Some of you might know that Jon Kitna is a born again Christian and single handily turned 40+ of his teammates toward Christianity. So you have to be wondering what Kitna thought yesterday after he threw 3 interceptions, two of which were late in the game when the Lions had the chance to win.

Maybe he thought that the devil had something to do with it when he said after yesterday's 16-10 loss to the Giants: "That is not a better football team than us," Kitna said. "We gave them the football game today. We gave it away. We had mental errors. We beat ourselves.

As he came off the field after throwing his 3rd pick, you could clearly see him screaming "Why!"... Why God have you forsaken Jon Kitna!
Nice effort by the Giants defense yesterday, but the offense still had a long way to go. The Giants lost Kiwanuka for the year with a broken leg and lost Jacobs for the game with a pulled hamstring, but I'm hoping he's back next week against the Vikings.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

A Birthday Party for the Ages

My wife threw me a 30th birthday party last night and it was an awesome time. About 30 people showed up and the night was full of big trays of Italian food, loud music, spontaneous dance parties, poker tournaments, Guitar Hero faceoffs and drunken games of Cranium. My wife did an amazing job planning the party and all of the credit goes to her for making it my best birthday of all time.

Friday, November 16, 2007

I Love Alex Rodriguez

Someone once said: "If you want something very, very badly, let it go free. If it comes back to you, it's yours forever. If it doesn't, it was never yours to begin with."
After Alex Rodriguez opted out of his Yankee contract a couple weeks ago, I was inconsolable. I couldn't believe it happened because I bought into what Alex said the whole season about wanting to be a Yankee. I bought into it when he was hitting clutch home runs during the regular season to keep the Yankees in contention. I bought into it when he hit his 500th homerun at Yankee Stadium and the crowd went nuts. I bought into it when it finally seemed like he was accepted by the New York fans; people who had booed him for three years whenever he made an out.
And when he opted out during the World Series, I promised I would never root for him again. I told anyone that listened that I hated Alex Rodriguez...I was in the verge of either setting my Alex Rodriguez T-Shirt on fire or cutting it up into 1,000 shreds.
..but I refrained from destroying the shirt because I held out hope...And sure enough, the prodigal son has returned with his Yankees hat in his hand and I love Alex Rodriguez again.
When I heard yesterday that Alex was meeting with the Steinbrenners and basically pleading to come back - if you can call getting a 10 year, $275 million contract begging and pleading - I was overjoyed. I read every single article I could find on the Internet, which was difficult as I was doing it from my Blackberry as I was waiting for my plane to leave Orlando.
Alex knew that his long-time agent and the devil's right hand man Scott Boras has made a mistake when he opted out. So he did the only thing that he had to do to get the Yankees to re-sign him by making a plea through third parties to get in touch with the Yankees. He told the Steinbrenners that he always wanted to be a Yankee and made a mistake. And now, Alex is on the verge of signing the biggest contract in sports history.
He's a Yankee for life and God am I happy about it.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I Hate Air Travel

For anyone who read my vacation blog back in July, you know that I hate air travel. Well, now I hate it more. ...

Apparently the TSA is now stereotyping guineas with slicked back hair, because as I was going through security at the Orlando airport last night, my bag was searched (Good thing I left my speedballs in Miami). The bald headed TSA security agent told me I couldn't take my full bottle of hair gel onto the airplane because it was over the allowable number of ounces. I guess that extra 1 oz makes a difference in building a bomb.

In only a way that I could do, I then made a joke and told the security agent that he didn't even need the hair gel because he didn't have any hair. He laughed, but he still took it from me.

By the time I got home, my awesome wife had already purchased a new bottle of hair gel. Rest assured that I'll surely be expensing the $2.79 in lost income and bill it to United States Department of Homeland Security.

It's all part of the bullshit, false sense of security against the TERRORISTS that is perpetrated by the pinheads in DC.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Interesting Article

Guys & their games…
By Margot Carmichael Lester

Here are the facts, ladies. Two-thirds of all men in television-owning households between the ages of 18 and 34 have videogame consoles, according to media research company, Nielsen. That means your chances of going with a gaming guy are pretty high. What can his choice of gaming system tell you about him? We convened a panel of experts to give you the scoop:

Carl Arinoldo, Long Island, NY-based psychologist
Ed Magnin, chairman, Game & Simulation Programming, DeVry University’s Dallas Metro campus
Ted Owen, CEO, GGL, an online gaming network in Santa Monica, CA
Shane Satterfield, editor-in-chief, Santa Monica-based, an online gaming site

Q: What does a PlayStation reveal about a dude?Arinoldo: The PlayStation 3 may indicate that the user is any “early-adopter,” someone who likes to be the first on the block to have things. Owning the PS3 may also send the message that the person may have deep pockets. Owen: This is your 21st-century individual who enjoys gaming and demands the best out of his experience—and probably his women. The PS3 guy enjoys life to its fullest. He is sophisticated, intelligent, enjoys competition and is willing to wait for a good thing. He is loyal as well. Satterfield: This guy is in the know. He knows the right people, goes to the best restaurants and doesn’t wait in line to get into the club. This guy will be difficult to keep up with, as he is always working. When he’s not, he uses videogames as a chance to unwind and relax.

Q. What does a Wii tell a gal about her potential date?Owen: That he is selfish about his passion, but he knows the Wii is acceptable because of its social interaction functionality. He is smart enough to find a way to continue to game and not scare his date away. Magnin: Wii says he’s a fun guy. The Wii-mote will force him to get up off the couch and actually get a little exercise while he’s playing. Of all of the consoles, the Wii is probably the best date machine, as a lot more of the games appeal to both sexes. Challenge him to a game of tennis or bowling. Satterfield: This guy is not the typical slack-jawed, bleary-eyed gamer who wants to sit on the couch staring blankly at the screen for hours on end. You can rest assured that this type of guy is smart with his money as the Wii is only $250 compared to $399 for the Xbox 360 and $599 for the PlayStation.

Q. And what does the Xbox divulge about its owner?Arinoldo: There is a wide variety of games available through the Xbox 360... so one may be better able to find games in common with a significant other who may not be an avid gamer. Preferring the Xbox 360 may say that the owner is willing to play cooperatively. Magnin: Xbox 360 says he’s probably into serious gaming. Take a look at his game stats. Ask him to show you how many hours he spent playing his favorite games. Many guys log 100 to 200 hours on their favorite games. Satterfield: These guys tend to like extremely violent, visceral games, as well as the social aspect of connecting with friends online. They may be living out an active and social life through games, because they are a bit on the shy side. Xbox 360 fans tend to make good money and like to spend it. These guys are passionate about gaming and that transfers into the bedroom as well.

Of course, these expert opinions won’t apply to all men who own these consoles, so don’t consider them absolutes. But they should help you gain some solid clues about that videogame-playing guy you’re seeing.

North Carolina-based freelancer Margot Carmichael Lester also contributes to and The L.A. Business Journal.

Rough Loss to Cowboys

It was a rough 31-20 loss to the Cowboys yesterday and yet another game where the Giants couldn't play 2 good halfs back to back. They were great in the 1st half. Eli played well. Shockey was tearing it up and they were clearly outplaying the Cowboys. The defense had the most energy I've ever seen out of them in the first half.

There were a number of bad calls in the game like when Romo was CLEARLY past the line of scrimmage when he threw his first TD of the day. Like to the phantom holding call when Ahmad Bradshaw started the second half with a crazy 80+ yard romp. But that doesn't make up for the fact that the Giants played poorly in the second half. They killed a good drive in the 3rd quarter by stupid penalties. They made dumb mental errors all day. And Eli didn't play well at all in the 2nd half.

The Giants face playoff contender the Detroit Lions last week and we can get the ship righted with a convincing win against the Lions...even though God is clearly on Lions QB Jon Kitna's side (ESPN inside joke here.)

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Entertain the Hell Out of Me...With Night Watch

My boy Smelmooo recommends movies to me on a daily basis. You could say he's my Roger Ebert ... with the same size belly. Usually though, he recommends crazy, indy movies that no one ever watches. I typically put his recommendations on my Netflix queue and in time forget why I put it on the list.

Well, last week he recommended Night Watch and told me it was a Russian action flick that I had to watch. I normally hate - with a passion - movies that have subtitles so I figured that I wouldn't watch it. When I was on Netflix last night though, I saw that I could watch it instantly on - probably one of the greatest inventions of all time - so I went ahead and started watching it.

To give you a little background on the movie: Night Watch -- or Nochnor Dozor if you're a Communist -- is the "first installment of the trilogy based on the best-selling science fiction novels by Russian writer Sergei Lukyanenko. [The movie] plays upon the tension between light and dark, pitting the superhuman Night Watch patrollers (known as the "Others") against the shadowed forces of the night. But the biggest fear of all stems from the lines of an ancient prophecy, which warns of a renegade Other whose betrayal could bring chaos to the land."

Sounds pretty far fetched huh? Well, just try to watch the movie and you'll quickly realize that it's like nothing - AND I MEAN NOTHING -- that you have ever seen before. Simply put, Night Watch is the most unique, emotional and mind bending movie I've ever seen in my life.

It is different in every single way from anything you've seen in the past...from the movie score that heats up during intense action scenes, to the wide array of camera angles in scenes to the crazy, mind defying vision of the film's director. After watching the movie, I can't explain any part of the story in a concise way, but I thought every single second was awesome.

Like I usually do, I want to try to compare it to other movies I've seen before -- like saying it was a cross between Blade and the Matrix and Ultraviolet -- but comparing it to yet another cookie cutter movie doesn't even do it half the justice of how awesome this movie was.

The movie was a friggin masterpiece and I can't wait to watch Day Watch - the 2nd film in the trilogy - as soon as I humanly can.

Monday, November 5, 2007

I'm in Shock Right Now....Part II

I'm in shock right now...well, not the shock I was in on October 18th, but still in shock with today's news that Joe Torre, Don Mattingly and Larry Bowa are moving from Biggie's coast to Tupac's coast to join the LA Dodgers....

What's next? A-Rod announcing that he signing a $350 million deal with the Queer Eye for the Straight Guy Softball team.

Entertain Me...With Thrillers, Comedy and Horror

Mr. Brooks - I watched Mr. Brooks last night and thought it was excellent....besides the fact that Dane Cook - who I detest - was one of the main characters in the movie. The movie surrounds a successful business man who is also a serial killer. It stars Kevin Costner, William Hurt, Demi Moore and Cook among others. During the movie, William Hurt plays Kevin Costner alter-ego (or conscience) and throughout the movie Costner fights his addiction of killing people wiht Hurt playing the devil on his shoulder. I thought it was definitely a great psychological thriller. Dane Cook nearly ruined it with his horrible acting, but I recommend the movie to anyone who loves thrillers.
Curb Your Enthusiasm - I've watched new and repeat episodes of Curb Your Enthusiasm the last month or so and think that it is one of the best and most underrated comedies on TV today.
When the show first came out a few years ago, I still was in the process of watching every Seinfeld episode for the 5th time in a row or so; so, I undoubtly compared the show to Seinfeld and ended up hating Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Since I started watching it recently though, I can't get enough of it. It's a laugh out loud riot. My wife, however, hates it with a passion because many of the jokes surround Larry David screaming at someone else. I'll admit, there is a ton of screaming and yelling in the show, but that doesn't stop it from being one of the funniest shows in awhile.
Saw IV - Smelmooo and I attended a viewing (I didn't want to say "saw Saw) of Saw IV last week and it was exactly what I thought it was going to be. Gore for gore sake ...and blood...and blood ...and more blood....and definitely a confusing ending that Smelmooo had to look up on the Internet afterward because we were both so confused.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Girardi Takes Number 27

I think it's awesome that Joe Girardi took Number 27 as his uniform number for the Yankees. As everyone knows, the Yankees have won 26 World Series. ...Under Girardi, hopefully they can win their 27th next October.