Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Sidewalk Chalk Arms Race

Karen & Kevan were in town last week with Maya & Zeke. It's been nice outside so Mom and Maya were drawing on the driveway with chalk. They were drawing their houses. Here's mom's house:

I got into the action and drew my castle on the hill that overlooks their neighborhood. Maya said that's where all the monsters live. Mom drew a giant alligator to protect their village. So I drew a flying, fire-breathing dragon to protect my territory. The put up a wall to stop my dragon.

Plus, they drew a tyrannosaurus that breathes water to counterbalance my dragon.

I told them that I didn't want to be on their side of the wall anyways. My side was much nicer. It's so nice that Santa Claus lived on my side. (That's why my castle has a chimney.)

Maya said that Mariella didn't want to live in my castle, so she drew an apartment for her. It was purple and had no doors or windows.

Jesus horses

I need a new band

For my birfday, Mariella got me tickets to the Father's Day Barenaked Ladies show. I really enjoy the band although, their last two albums would've made one good one instead of the two mediocre ones. But I digress. Mariella and I went to the show and we had to park in the Christie's Cabaret parking lot - is that irony? We went to find our seats only to learn that we were directly behind two large ladies (and I say that as a large person myself.) The seats at Nautica/The Scene/The Plain Dealer Pavilion are bleacher-style with depressions for your tushy. Not super comfortable when you're wedged in there like sardines. We started sweating as soon as we sat down. And since the opening act wasn't very good we went to walk around. As it turns out pregnant ladies LOVE BNL. You'd think it was an obstetrician office with all the knocked-ups knocking around there.
Also there were TONS of people wearing BNL shirts at the BNL show. Didn't you morons see PCU?! You don't wear the t-shirt of the band when you go to see that band. The fact that you're there tells everyone you like the band. Don't be that guy.
Another thing that irritates me at concerts is people not knowing how or when to throw up the "horns." First off, tuck the thumb or else you're saying "I love you." And even if you're doing it right, YOU DO NOT THROW THEM UP FOR IF I HAD A MILLION DOLLARS! Got that people! It's acceptable to throw them up for Ronnie James Dio and anything else that hard rockin'. Definitely not BNL.
So, while I still enjoy the tunage, I need a new band with a following of like-minded snarky, sarcastic bastards like myself. Any suggestions?

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

I'm man enough to admit

that this is adorable.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Duct Tape Festival

Every year there's a duct tape festival and I've always been unable to go b/c we've always been on vacation for father's day weekend. Since we didn't use our time share this year, Mariella and I got a chance to experience it.
It reminded me of when Dad used to run the Chanel carnival. I loved it. We were the adopted children of the midway. We got free ride tickets.
Grandma Szczepanik would always come and make sure every grand kid won "the birthday game." You put a quarter on a date on the game board and then the game guy would roll a dice. If you matched the dice, you won a stuffed animal. Mariella and I played the game (I forced her), and we won with "Valentine's Day." It was like Grandma and Dad were helping us out. Mariella selected an excellent pink monkey.
After that we got some of Bayou Billy's Homemade Soda Pop - Sasparilla, we later got a refill of Birch Beer. I think it's a neat business model. Customers buy a tin mug for $5. Every refill after that is $1. They've got a whole assortment of flavors. The mug says that you get $1 refills for life. Mariella didn't like my idea of checking the website and becoming Bayou Billy Groupies - touring the country and following the stand to get our $1 drinks at fairgrounds in exotic locales.
All in all a good time. Although the fireworks could use some improvement.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Louisville Hijinx

Been swamped and unable to blog. Here are the much delayed details from the trip to Louisville. Overall, cool city, lackluster conference. Last year in San Fran set the bar pretty high but this year's speakers were lousy for the most part. There were a few bright spots.

I got down there on Wednesday night and we met Rick from our AAF - Cleveland office. He wanted to go and get a mint julep at some bar/restaurant that refused to serve O.J. Simpson during the Kentucky Derby. We ordered our juleps (when in Rome...) and that was my first and worst mint julep ever. From there we went to the Galt House which just opened a bar on their top floor called Rivue. It looks over the Ohio River. It was quite nice and Rick had a good time messing with our servers mind. He told her that we were there with the tour bus and there were 60 more of us coming up for dinner. She was pretty worried.

After that we went to 4th Street Live - Louisville's hopping outdoor bar district.

They've put a roof up over the street so it would be good even in the rain. It was 10 pm by that point and we hadn't eaten yet. So we went to the Red Star Tavern. It was highly decent. We headed back to the hotel and ran into some friends of ours from W. Va. Who wanted to go out.

We went to 21c Hotel/Museum. It was one of the highlights of the trip. It's a hotel with an incredible Art gallery on the bottom two floors. I really liked the snow globes with horrific scenes in them. They were done by artists named Walter Martin and Paloma Munoz. They also had some cool interactive installations.

(That's an execution scene in there.)

Rick and I made an early exit and hoofed it back the hotel.

The conference started on Thursday. It was weirdly scheduled. I couldn't go to all of the sessions that I wanted to b/c some of the start times overlapped meetings I was in.

And another thing about these conferences - there are cocktail hours galore plus hospitality suites all over the place. It's amazing that anything that anything gets done at these things.

Thursday night we went to eat at the Maker's Mark Bourbon Restaurant. It wasn't that good. Some of the people I was with ordered the sampling flights of bourbon. The waitress explaining how to taste bourbon to us unsophisticated clods was mighty amusing. I told them that they should just pour them into one glass and shoot the whole thing. I had some salmon with what I assumed was mashed potatoes. But when I took a forkful I found they were full of these little twigs of something. I asked the waitress about the potatoes - apparently they weren't potatoes at all but rather pureed celery. Gross. From there we rushed back to the sports bar in our hotel in time to watch the Cavs drop game #1.

Friday, one of the highlights of the conference was the students from the University of Minnesota who had won the National Student Advertising Competition. Their pitch was for Coca-Cola and it was phenomenal.

The "business" part of the conference ended early that day so that we could go to Churchill Downs to watch some horseracing. Rick (as per usual) dressed in costume - this time as a jockey.

Rick's wife Connie flew into Louisville Friday morning and surprised him. So we went back to Rivue to show her the view. Some of our AAF friends came along for the evening. For dinner we went to Caviar - a Japanese steakhouse located on West Muhammed Ali Blvd. I had some sushi. One of the items was called the Crunch Munch. It was very good. The menu mentioned their Private Room - I'm sorry - The Rrivate Room [sic]. From there we went to 4th St. again and did some hard core people watching.

Saturday, we had to accept our award for being named Ad Club of the Year. Go Cleveland! I was proud to wear my LeBron jersey (b/c as of that point we thought the Cavs still had a shot.) We putzed around town after that, visiting the Louisville Slugger factory and several other attractions.

I wore my jersey to the national ADDY awards. One of our friends overheard two ladies in the lobby early on in the event.
WOMAN 1: I don't know what to wear.
WOMAN 2: Me neither. But there's some guy up there in a LeBron jersey.
WOMAN 1: Wow.
WOMAN 2: It's an Ohio thing.

Whatever. Our teams aren't typically good. We haven't won a championship since '64. I'm going to wear my jersey as much as I can.

The National ADDYs were actually pretty good. The work was better than last years and Joe Piscipo (the host for the second year in a row) wasn't as terrible as I was expecting. From there we went to the 6th district hospitality suite which wasn't really hoping. So we went to bed, caught our plane Sunday morning and returned home.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Going south with Boobie

I'm heading to Louisville for the AAF National Convention. Should be good. I'll be flying Cavs colors pretty much the whole time.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Dollar Dog D'oh!

Mariella went to the Tribe game with friends on Friday. I had other crap going on and didn't get a ticket but my event was shorter than I expected so I went to get a ticket and meet her. All they had left was $20 standing room only?! (Cleveland apparently loves it's dollar dogs.) And it was already the 5th inning.

Looks like that prison Martha was in.

So I found a spot on the street that let me see home plate. I watched the game for an inning or two and headed to a bar to see it "all" on TV. The Tribe was losing so Mariella came to meet me outside for the postgame fireworks.

Well, long story short - she missed an amazing comeback and a 12-11 Tribe win.


So, the Cavs did it.

Cleveland is freaking out.

It was awesome to see them beat Detroit. No one thought they could (myself included.) But most of the Detroit team is a whining bunch of sissies. I'm annoyed by pretty much every player on the roster:

Rip Hamilton AKA glass face. Frankly, he should NOT be allowed to wear a facemask. He broke his nose when? Two seasons ago? It's an unfair advantage. He can go to the hoop without any regard for his face. Why not put both teams in full pads?

Rasheed Wallace AKA Mr. Angry. It was awesome to see the Cavs get his ire up. Although apparently that's not hard

Tashaun Prince AKA that sickly kid from the Simpsons. I don't like him b/c he's too good - make that was too good.

But let's not focus on the losers. We're going to the Finals!

I created a new shirt to watch the game in.

I'm going to be in Louisville for the first view games, but I'm definitely packing my Cavs jersey.

Lookout, Spurs. King James doesn't fake the funk on nasty dunks and all that rigamarole.