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Showing posts from January, 2010

The best dog ever!

We lost a beloved family member yesterday when our son's dog Rigby was put to sleep due to multiple health issues. Rigby was around 13 years of age and had enjoyed a long and fruitful life, and was much loved by our immediate and extended family, and even participated in our son's wedding a few years ago!
Our son obtained Rigby from a friend's brother as one of several puppies of an unintentional litter of mixed breeds. He was half black Labrador, half Akita, and a very unique looking dog, tipping the scales at around 100 pounds at full maturity. After reaching adulthood Rigby had the coarse coat of an Akita, but his Akita-sized ears were floppy like a Lab's. And his tail was generally up and curled a bit over his back, somewhat like a coat hanger! One could always gauge his mood by whether his tail was up or not, and for many years, as long as Rigby was fully awake, his tail was up.
As a puppy, of course, he was very cute and had enormous feet, so we knew what he w…

Quit, or don't, but get on with it

Sunday's NFL conference championship games yielded one expected outcome (the Colts advancing to their second Super Bowl in four years) and one stupendously exciting game, in which the New Orleans Saints defeated the Minnesota Vikings for the right to play in their very first Super Bowl.
The big story all year for the Vikings has been Brett Favre, the 40-year-old oft-retired quarterback who let his team to a fine season marked with a high level of accomplishment for both the team and numerous individuals, including Favre himself. Truth be told, the Vikings were a decent quarterback away from a great record, with a stifling defense and all-world halfback Adrian Peterson. But the story was Favre, in his second comeback in as many years, having apparently been convinced to come back with a healed shoulder and a big chip on it against the Green Bay Packers. It seems the Packers tired of Favre's will-he-or-won't-he antics year after year and two years ago they essentially let …

What just happened?

I spent a strange week this week, with my company observing the MLK Day holiday and then on the road for three days. Needless to say my consumption of news was a little disjointed, but suffice it to say that I was stunned at some of what transpired over the past few days.....
First and foremost, congratulations to Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown for capturing a U.S. Senate seat that had been occupied by the late Ted Kennedy for the past 47 years. Quite a feat, and now the Democrats only have a nine-vote majority in the Senate. From the cheap seats where I am, the "filibuster-proof" majority had not helped the Dems ram through every single piece of legislation, so I don't see much changing a a result of a slightly smaller majority.
What I do see changing, though, is the overall political landscape as the result of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision yesterday, which paves the way for corporations to spend as much as they like in advertising and other activities de…

So much for loyalty

Two things have come up in the last few days about which I feel compelled to comment.....
Here's the first: NBC decided that keeping Jay Leno in the fold to host a 10:00 PM version of his "Tonight Show" would revolutionize prime-time television, and NBC was to be congratulated for determining that hiring Jay at an ungodly salary would still be cheaper than paying the freight on five one-hour dramas to fill the Monday-Friday 10:00 PM time slot. This was all decided AFTER they had committed the traditional "Tonight Show" slot several years ago to Conan O'Brien, who replaced David Letterman in the 12:35 AM time slot several years ago. All Conan did was exactly what he was told: present a mostly funny show, close it out, move himself, his family, his on-air team and his writing and producing staff to southern California (because that's where the "Tonight Show" is done, you know).
In the interest of full disclosure, note that I was always a Let…

Closet geeks, unite

I admit it, I'm something of a gadget geek. Always have been, as a matter of fact.
I'm not sure where this started, but when I was a kid I wanted our family to have a TV with remote control in the worst way. My late father used to laugh when my brothers and I would lobby for a remote control, saying that he didn't need that as long as he had us!
As a teen and an avid music lover I got very tired of having to wait my turn to get access to the family stereo, so after I got an after-school job my first purchase, naturally, was my own stereo, to which I added over the years. To show you how much that stereo meant to me, I kept the components until about eighteen months ago. And I'll be 50 next year, for those who are keeping score.
I always wanted a good stereo in my cars, too, and until I was able to buy cars with decent built-in stereo (with tape and eventually CD) capabilities, I always added the best aftermarket unit I could afford. I have memories, not so fond, of s…

We'll miss you, Coach Brooks

Seven football seasons ago, Kentucky fans were angry. Their team had just been placed on probation as a result of events that occurred under the previous coach, the current coach had led the team to a surprising seven win season, and the athletics director did not see fit to match a generous offer from another university to keep that coach on the job in Lexington.
That's the situation Rich Brooks inherited when he accepted the head football coaching job at the University of Kentucky seven years ago. Many fans were upset that Kentucky had not lured a "big-name" coach or at least one with a recent history of success at the collegiate level. Brooks hadn't coached a single game in college in a number of years, having served as a head coach and defensive coordinator for professional teams. Rumors swirled that Kentucky had too aggressively pursued one or two high-profile candidates, only to be turned down late in the selection process, or that it had offered the job to …

The year isn't all that's new....

Well, here we are, 2010, and I suppose now we'll have to get used to saying "twenty-ten" to signify this year. I heard three television personalities correct themselves when first referring to the new year at "two thousand ten." But here's what else is new:
Airline security lines will be longer and screening will be more thorough, or so we're being told.
The United States is closing embassies in other countries for the umpteenth time.
Health care reform will be a reality, albeit in a form probably not originally intended.
It's cold, even in places where it ordinarily isn't.
Most everyone you know is on a new diet or eating plan or exercise plan or all of the above.
NBA players are apparently being advised not to bring guns onto the court, as many appear to have them most everywhere else.
Tiger Woods is no longer a sought-after product endorser.
The Pittsburgh Steelers will not repeat as Super Bowl champs.
The New York Yankees begin the year as defendin…