Friday, December 26, 2008

A Jewish Christmas

I'm pretty sure it's written in the Torah, that every year, on December 25th, all jew's are to venture to Jerusalem a Chinese Restaurant (and a movie theatre). So as a good little jew, I did just that. To make things even more jewy, I took my jew-friend Shari, to see jew-actor Adam Sandler's new movie - Bedtime Stories. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, it's a Disney Movie. It was actually pretty good.

Next up was finding the Chinese place. I hadn't yet found a good one by house that I liked, so after some research, and by the request of non-jew, Jeremy, we picked out a buffet. Only one problem...the "China Buffet" we saw on the internet (with the worlds best egg roll's according to the review) no longer existed. In it's place was a Chin-Chin, which I've been to, and didn't really want to go back. Jeremy was actually already there, with a table, but I got him to bail. We drove around for a bit, thought about trying a Thai place, but it was closed...Surprisingly, Hooters was open! We kept driving and found a place called "House of Chan". Perfect! The parking lot even smelled good! There was actually a bit of a line outside to get a table, probably another good sign. Eventually we get buffet though. The waitress had a shirt that said "Thing" in sparkles. She said that was actually her name. It's kinda tough to understand if a Chinese person is being funny sometimes.

Anyways, we look at the menu, and much laughter ensues. Never have I seen so many typo's on a menu in my life. Sure, I understand it's not their language. But I usually think Chinese people are pretty enough to use spell checker at least! See below, see how many typo's you can find. You should be able to click on em to make em larger. My favorite is "fride rice".

With all that said, the food was VERY good. We even had a conversation with the manager about the Chinese Diet. I probably learned more talking to that guy than I knew about food in the last 2 years. But, much like college, I've forgotten pretty much all of it already :) I do remember he said that spicy food prevents colds and eating bamboo prevents colon cancer...I think.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Danielson Checks himself into Hospital

CBS Announcer Danielson Checks himself into Hospital

ATLANTA, GA — At approximately 11 pm Saturday night, CBS sports announcer Gary Danielson realized it was time to head for the emergency room.

"Every single commercial for a male virility pill, like Viagra or Cialis, says that if your erection lasts for more than four hours, then you should call a doctor," Danielson said. "Well I had the biggest Tebowner of my life yesterday, and it started about 3 pm eastern time and it wasn't gone by 11 pm, and I knew it wasn't even close to being gone, so I came to the ER."

The Tebowner seems to have been a direct result of Tim Tebow's dominant performance in the SEC Championship game against Alabama. As of the publication of this piece, Danielson remained in care with a lot of attention being paid to him, as doctors worked in vain to figure out what they could do to treat the Tebowner.

"It's a really difficult thing to treat," said Dr. Pervez Mushtaf, of the Atlanta Regional Medical Center. "Tebowners start off and they feel so great, you're like, 'Damn, Tim Tebow is awesome, I could feel like this forever, I hope that this feeling never ends,' that sort of thing. But then you find yourself about four hours later and you're like, ' Jesus, I mean, I love Tim Tebow, I really love Tim Tebow, but holy crap, this thing has got to go away.'"

A Tebowner is defined by the American Journal of Medicine as a "severe swelling of the genitalia resulting from long-term visual exposure to the exploits of Tim Tebow on the college football field."

Tebowners occur naturally following viewing of Florida Gators games for many people, with an extremely high prevalence in television announcers and University of Florida graduates.

"I'm not sure why, but we treat a lot of TV announcers who have severe Tebowners," Mushtaf said. "Barely a week goes by where I don't spend part of Sunday chucking cold water on Brent Musburger's hoo-hah, if you know what I mean."

As for Danielson, doctors are keeping their fingers crossed that his Tim Tebow-inspired "condition" will subside.

"We've tried cold water, and we've tried ice cubes, and we've even tried naked pictures of Rosie O'Donnell," Mushtaf said. "Nothing has worked so far. But now we've got him in there watching this year's game between the Iowa Hawkeyes and Indiana Hoosiers. That ought to make it go away."

Tebowners are a serious problem in the southeastern part of the country, where Tim Tebow is frequently viewed, and long-lasting Tebowners have been negatively affecting men across Florida for the last two years. It is a much more severe affliction than the fast-spreading Peter Warrdick that plagued Tallahassee briefly in the early part of the 1990s.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Unconquered My Ass!!!!!

Last night I suffered through yet another FSU loss, not I only did I suffer through the game (where we had to play without FIVE 5!!!!!!!!! wide receivers) but it was about 40 degrees with 20 MPH winds. In row 67, it was pretty miserable. FSU lost 27-17, and it was still much much much much easier to take than the last FSU game I went to at Georgia Tech 2 weeks ago, but I'm not trying to remember that right now.

I have an issue with FSU's new little slogan. 2 years ago, FSU debuted new all black uniforms (I still think they should try black helmets). I actually like em. But what I don't like...and I know this has to do with the actual Seminole Indian Tribe more than the football team, but on the side of the pants is the word, "UNCONQUERED". Well, guess what? If I'm a Boston College fan, I'm having a blast with it. In 2006, the all black uniforms made their debut against, guess who? Boston College. Guess which team was conquered that day? Yep. The Seminoles. Last year, FSU wised up and wore the black uniforms against Duke. Not really fair. So yesterday, back came the black uniforms. And guess who got conquered again.

I understand paying tribute to the Seminole Indian tribe, but how about we let THEM remain unconquered and the FSU football pants can just say, and bare with me on this, it's pretty drastic...NOTHING.

Oh how I miss you Leon Washington!!!! Thanks for beating the Patriots though!
If I'm a Boston College fan, I take this statue, cross out the "UN" and put the scores to the 2006 and 2008 games under it. And bam, you have a t-shirt to sell making fun of us. It's that easy. And sad.
Can someone mention to whoever makes these decisions that FSU is 8-0 all time in the all garnet get-ups?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Guerilla Radio

Man I am soooooo behind on my blogging! I really wanna get this one in quickly.

Last Friday night, I hung out with Jason in his first fatherhood fun night out. After grabbing some food, we were trying to figure out what to do, so we put our future in our friend, Jeanie. We definitely wanted to go somewhere with live music, preferably a decent cover band. With the power of the internet, we looked up what was going on when the mostest awesomest thing EVER popped up on the screen. A Rage Against the Machine "tribute" band. Just like that we were instantly excited. They played at the upstairs portion of East Andrews.

So we found out about this show pretty randomly about an hour before it was supposed to start, so we rushed off to go over there. They even had some guy open up for him who was really pretty good. He played some recognizable cover songs. Then came "Guerilla Radio" (which is a title of one of RATM's popular songs for those not in the know). And they were AWESOME. Whenever I go with Jason to see a cover band, we always look forward and scream for them to "play some Rage!" The only downfall of the concert was how empty it was in there. I almost felt bad. These guys said this was their first show in Atlanta and the crowd was sparse. Whoever was in charge of spreading the word about this band did an absolutely terrible job. I would've planned my weekend around this concert! But it worked out, with an hour's notice, we went down there and had a BLAST.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


I can't say I'm a big fan of Halloween. I think they should reschedule it for a few weeks sooner. It TOTALLY disrupts my birthday! Especially this year when Halloween was Friday and my birthday was Sunday. But I made the best of it.

For whatever reason, Halloween is a pretty big deal at work. There's a costume contest, so I give it a shot each year. The winner gets a DAY OFF! Which, for my place of employment is highly valuable, since they're pretty few and far between it seems. So here's a mini-montage of Halloween the last few years...

2003 - The Nerd

2004 - Charlie Brown (hard to tell in the picture but I just tried to kick the football when Lucy, errr Tim pulled the ball out from under me and I went flying)

2005 - an Atlanta Thrasher (complete with black eye, blood and missing tooth). This was obviously my favorite costume and I was disappointed not to have won anything. I skated (well, roller bladed) around the office all day!
2006 - uhhh, Jason

2007 - Napoleon Dynamite (yes that's a tater tot I took out of my pocket)

2008 - pregnant. (I'd like to point out some water that just made its way to the ground just behind me and some reactions to it. That was awesome)
So after 6 pretty good attempts I finally cracked through. Third place. $25 gift card. I'll take it! (Although I still think the hockey player costume was better)
I can now say that I have a new found respect for pregnant people. Sitting at my desk with that thing in the way was a PAIN! Luckily my pregnancy only last 6 hours or so, well, before re-using the costume Saturday night of course!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


This past Saturday I went with some friends to go see Angels & Airwaves and Weezer at The Arena At Gwinnett Center. Angels & Airwaves were really good, but they only played about 6 songs or so! When they left the stage I could've sworn lead singer Tom DeLonge said, "we'll be back in a minute to rock the roof off this place". Well, I guess I heard wrong, at that point I was kinda expecting the band to come back out and play some more. No such luck.

They took the stage down and eventually out came Weezer. This was easily a top 5, maybe even top 3 concert I've been to. And I've been to a lot of em! (That's not even updated).

Here's a video of a guitar solo and then me kariokeing (is that a word?) along to the Sweater Song...(sorry for the bouncy camera, I'm no pro)

Here's the set list...

Now this may have been the coolest thing I've EVER witnessed at a concert. A local radio station, I assume 96.7 The Buzz (is 99x still trying the online thing?) held a contest to have a few musicians auditions to take part in a song during the concert. Well, they managed to get about 30-40 people on stage during the songs "Island in the Sun" and "Beverly Hills" (I'm pissed that my camera died, no more videos and I had to jack other peoples' pictures. They had a ton of different instruments on stage including guitars, drums, a bassoon?, cello, trumpet, saxophone, and even a tap dancer, who got the most love from the band - even a hug from Weezer lead singer Rivers Cuomo.

Matching outfits! They all wore white first, then stripped those off into the red track suits in the video above.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Congrats to the Ralls'

Riley Anne Ralls (formerly known as Eggbert) was born at 11:34pm on Friday October 17th, 2008. I am (un)officially an uncle!!!!

Typically I am not a big fan of kids but I've been friends with Jason (and eventually Tara) for a long time and I'm very excited for them. In fact, I was over at their house Thursday night, trying to setup their wireless modem when Tara said she hoped that she would be in the 5% that actually have their baby on time (Riley was due on Saturday). Maybe five minutes later, she followed that up with ... "my water broke!" I'm half surprised I didn't run out the front door and all the way back to my place to hide, but I didn't. I was legitimately excited for them. Weird!

I went with Tracy, Kim and Michael to visit them at the hospital on soon to come...including my kick ass baby gift for Tara mainly, not so much for the baby :)

Jason, the proud new daddy of a conehead :)

Aunt Tracy actually looks like she knows what she's doing. Or at least she looks happy!

As for me, I'm kinda wingin it!

Kim is so good at this she looks bored

And here is my gift to them. Tara actually requested that I brough her beer in the hospital, but this is clearly the next best thing...

And with Tracy's assistance the labels really came out AWESOME!

"Welcome Riley
Love, Uncle J
Bottom's Up"

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Thrashers "Unleash" New Third Jerseys

At tonight's Face-Off event, the Atlanta Thrashers unveiled their third / alternate jerseys. And, uhhhhhh, I don't like all. To me they look like basketball jerseys. In fact, here's a quote from someone on a message board,

"That third jersey's got to be one of the ugliest jerseys in sports. It's a
Hawks jersey with long sleeves!"

That's probably about as accurate as I could come up with. They're gonna wear these things at 14 (of 41) home games this year, starting with the game on November 14th.

Here are some pictures. The numbers on the front of the jerseys are NOT normally supposed to be that big:

They kinda look a little more tolerable from behind...

Wow, it gets worse! You know its bad when ESPN is talking about how bad our new third jerseys are!

Let's hear it for the Thrashers, who've set a new standard for bad design with their new alternate uniform. The massive chest number belongs in the NBA, the shoulder logo belongs on a San Diego Chargers jersey, and the socks belong back on the drawing board. Additional photos here, if you dare, and here's a schedule of when this uniform will be worn, so you can make other plans for those dates.

My biggest problem, beside the huge numbers on the front, is that the theme for home games is "Believe in Blueland". Anyone see a problem there???

Praying for Rain...Worked!

No, this has nothing to do with the drought!

Of course, I'm talking about kickball!!!! I think the thing I was most excited about when I started my own kickball team was the chance to have my team play against my old team. Before the schedules were released, we emailed the league and requested them to schedule our teams against each other. Well, originally the schedule came out and they didn't schedule it. We emailed the league again...and they changed the schedule so that we would play each other.
One catch. They scheduled the game for Wed. Oct 8, 2008. On Yom Kippur. (Probably the most important Jewish holiday of them all). So I knew I wasn't going to be able to play. I was pissed!!! But I knew there was only one thing to do, and I did...I prayed for rain.

Given the fact that it NEVER rains in Atlanta anymore, I wasn't exactly optimistic about this one. But I woke up this morning and noticed something odd was falling from the sky. Turns out it was RAIN!!!!! It's been a while since I've witnessed it! So, apparently God was listening to me...and tonight's games have been postponed!!!!! I'm literally giddy right now. If there's one thing I learned from all of this it's that kickball is probably way too important in my life right now, but I love it!!!!! :)

And while I'm complaining about bad scheduling, I'm also pissed off that the Atlanta Thrashers scheduled the 2008 Face Off Event (a meet & greet with all the players) for tonight! WTF???? I think I've been to that the last two years and it was a really great event! The newest Thrasher, Mathieu Schneider is Jewish, I wonder if he'll be participating?

Friday, October 3, 2008

Fantasy Baseball Bragging

Warning - dorky post ahead!

For several years now, my favorite fantasy game has been The Sporting News Ultimate games. They're setup like the stock market, where each Major League baseball player is given an IPO price at the beginning of the season, and based on how they do, their price goes up or down as they get bought or sold by those playing the game. So the more money you have, the better players you can afford. Anyways, the season ended this week, and, unlike my Mets, I finished on a high note!

Out of 7,902 entries, I finished 12th! A lot of people (including me) have multiple entries, and each entrant is only allowed 1 prize, so finishing 12th actually meant I actually finished in 5th place! $500!!!!! Woohoooo!!!!!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Why I'm Dumb (Part 296)

After last night's 12-3 (I think?) kickball loss, we all headed to the bar. I was pretty hungry at this point, but I didn't want just a plain bar burger. So I saw a burger on the menu that was a "Black Bean Burger". In my head, I'm thinking its a burger with black beans and a corn salsa on top. That's different. It never occurred to me, but when the waitress didn't ask me how I wanted my burger cooked...I should've known. It was a meat-less burger!!!!!!! I'm such an IDIOT!!!!!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Team Canada falls to 0-3

Team Canada: World Mounties suffered their 3rd straight loss last night to "You Look Like I Need a Drink". Even with the loss, the team has definitely improved since the franchise debut two weeks ago in a 17-0 loss, which was followed up by a 15-3 loss in game 2. Last night was a much closer 8-4 loss. The team is definitely moving in the right direction, just one bad 6-run inning last night cost us a chance to win. We'll get one...soon...I hope!

Pregame stretching (or, me falling down, pretending to stretch if you were actually there)

Shelley, Lauren (who doesn't play because she doesn't kick balls she says) and Jill during pregame ceremonies

The pregame gang signs obviously didn't do the trick

Me, scoring the 2nd run in franchise history...for the record Jill scored right before me.

Jill, shoeing away the cameras after a demoralizing loss. Stevens wiping away the tears, while Connie and Patrick laugh at them

Post-game party...we're all winners!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Being in the Right Place at the Right Time

This wasn't even actually me, but it directly affects me, so I thought I'd tell a quick story. A friend of mine (I won't use names so that there's no chance of anyone getting in trouble somehow) went down to Philips Arena yesterday to get us tickets to the Thrashers home opener, which is just over 2 weeks away now! While in line, my friend, we'll call her Bob, for fun. Bob noticed a bunch of people around the box office who apparently work for Turner. Security guard types is what Bob called them. Bob strikes up a conversation with one of em, we'll call him "Mohinder" (since I just watched Heroes last night!). Bob asks Mohinder why they're all here in the middle of a day on a Tuesday? Apparently, they work for Turner and they were all given free passes to redeem for 5 Hawks and 5 Thrashers games - 4 seats per game! (Must be nice!). Well, Bob picks up on the fact, that Mohinder may not be a Thrashers fan. Turns out, he is not. Bob also learns that Mohinder enjoys beer, and a trade is born. Bob offers some free passes to a brewery, which, we'll call "Sour Ice". So in exchange for some free beer at the Sour Ice brewery, Mohinder gives Bob his 5 sets of Thrashers passes, and Bob gives Mohinder several free admission passes to Sour Ice Brewery Tours.

It gets better! Bob then goes to the box office to redeem these for tickets. Unfortunately, these passes were not able to be used for opening night, but Bob, smartly, picked several weekend games throughout the season and not only got 4 free tickets to each game. But 4 of the 5 games are tickets for the lower level section! There is a game against the defending champion Detroit Red Wings, and former Thrasher, Marian Hossa, in March that is apparently selling fast, so we will be in the lower portion of the upper level. We'll survive!!!!

This is huge news because our friend "BJ" no longer works at Philips. So tickets are gonna have to be paid for a bit more frequently this season. Good start though!!!!!

Way to go Bob!!!!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My Hatred of the Braves Increases

As a Mets fan living in the ATL, life is rough. I've been to 8 games this year...

April 4: Mets @ Braves, ppd. rain
April 5: Braves 11, Mets 5
April 6: Braves 3, Mets 1
May 20: Braves 6, Mets 1
May 20: Braves 6, Mets 2
May 21: Braves 11, Mets 4
May 22: Braves 4, Mets 2
June 7: Phillies 6, Braves 2 (did I mention I'm beginning to hate the Phillies more than the Braves?)
Sept 18: Phillies 4, Braves 3

The Mets are now a half game behind the Phillies for first place and I know why. It's because the Braves hate me more than I hate them. This year the Phillies are 9-0 in Atlanta. That's right, they've won ALL 9 games. The Mets on the other hand, ALWAYS do terribly in Atlanta, and they haven't won yet in 6 tries. My theory - the Braves do NOT want the Mets to win the division. Enough so, that they intentionally lose all of their games to the Phillies, while they go all out against the Mets.

This weekend, the Mets come to Atlanta. I know I should stay away, you know, to help the team. But I can't. I'm definitely going Friday night, possibly Sunday if I can talk Lauren into it... I'll take Saturday off, gives them a fighting chance to win one game at least!

It was cool though, not only did I get free tix through work, right behind home plate...but it was $1 hot dog night! After spending two whole dollars on dinner, after looking at the ticket, it said that this ticket is good for a "$10 food, beverage and merchandise credit". After kickball last night (recap to come) I didn't feel like drinking, so I wasted my play money on a pretzel and a 85oz coke which was so big it was actually very difficult to carry. The pretzel wasn't very good and I managed to drink about one-twentieth of the drink. Oh well, it was free...sorta!

We sat next to this older guy who has been on a tour of all 30 major league ballparks and Turner Field was the 30th of 30 stadiums for him to visit. Pretty expensive hobby, but I would love to do that someday!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Down Goes Team Canada

Team Canada: World Mounties made their regular season kickball debut on Wednesday in front of a packed house crowd of, ummm, 5 fans. Before the first game even started, the injury report was significant. Ryan and Devon were both out with leg injuries. I was probable (knee), Cintron was questionable (work). I decided I will go ahead and include myself on the injury report (which, by the way, isn't real) to avoid any Tom Brady-like superstitious injuries.

Our inaugural season got off to a great start with me winning the paper-rock-scissors portion of the competition and earning home field for the game. And it pretty much was all downhill from there. After 3 innings we were down 3-0 when all hell broke loose. With 2 runners on base and two outs in the top of the 4th inning, a slow - and I mean SLOW - ground ball was hit to first where Cintron just had to pick it up and we'd be out of the inning. I didn't even watch, I was jogging off the field as if the inning was over. I look back towards first and somehow the ball got away from him and is rolling into foul territory. We never recovered. 8 runs scored in the 4th inning and all of a sudden we were losing 11-0. Yikes!

Fast forward to the bottom of the 5th. Time was running out, we were down 12-0 when I got my first hit of the year to lead off the inning. Rochelle followed me with another hit, when I got greedy and took off for third. I slid -d'oh - and was called out even though I was never tagged. I was pissed! And, bleeding...again. At least my knee pads came in handy. This time it was my arm (see below). After that excruciating inning was over, the umpire not only admitted that he blew the call, but that our game was over (we only get a one hour time slot). The problem was that it was only 8:24. (Rule #1 - "Each game will be 7 innings or one hour in length, whichever comes first."). Since we started at 7:30, we still had 6 more minutes. I begged and pleaded, telling the ump that since he blew that call, he needs to give us this one more inning...we had to at least try to score ONE run! Well, eventually he gave in and let us play another inning. And 5 runs were scored...but none by us. We lost 17-0.

Chicks dig scars, right?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Team Canada: World Mounties

The fall 2008 gokickball schedules were announced today and Team Canada: World Mounties (think - Team America: World Police spin off) inaugural kickball season will officially begin on Sept. 10th at 9:30pm against "Where my Pitches at?"

It is unfortunate that the league wasn't able to schedule a regular season game again bitter rivals "Flip cup is our first sport" (although we do plan on filing an appeal!) But we plan on not only taking them down in the preseason game on September 3rd, but also in the playoffs...if they even make it! (EDIT: They adjusted the schedules for us!!!!)

Team Canada: World Mounties Official Regular Season Schedule:
Wed, Sep 10, 2008 7:30 PM @ Where my Pitches At?
Wed, Sep 17, 2008 8:30 PM vs. K-ballers
Wed, Sep 24, 2008 9:30 PM @ You Look I Need A Drink (a team name typo??? I feel "like" there's a word missing)
Wed, Oct 1, 2008 7:30 PM vs. Drunk And Still Kickin'
Wed, Oct 8, 2008 9:30 PM vs. Flip cup is our first sport (HUGEEEEEEE!!!!!)
Wed, Oct 15, 2008 9:30 PM @ Loose Screws
Wed, Oct 22, 2008 8:30 PM vs. Sofa King High Rollers

Team Canada: World Mounties Official Roster:
Connie P.*
David C.
David W.
Jason R.
*-Free agents, randomly assigned to our team...I have high hopes!

That's What She Said!

Me and Matt seem to have a little competition going, who could use the line "That's What She Said" the most. I'm pretty sure I've got this one in the bag!

It comes from the show "The Office" and the video below has 4 seasons worth of examples. Give it a's fun :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Fandangles, Take Two

Just about a month ago, some friends and I went to a restaurant called "Fandangles" - in the Sheraton - for "Downtown Atlanta Restaurant Week" and we had "An Awesomly Horrible Dining Experience". I wrote about it in my blog, still thinking that only my parents and grandmother read this thing. Well, turns out this internet thing is a pretty big deal. Pretty soon after I wrote my little story, I had this email waiting for me:

Good Afternoon Jason,

I just finished reading your blog and can’t tell you how disappointed and embarrassed I am about the awful dining experience that you had while visiting Fandangles earlier this week. I would love to have the opportunity to bring you and your friends back to Fandangles and give you the perfect dining experience that we are known for (complimentary of course). Please let me know if you would like to take me up on the offer and when you would be joining us. You can reach me by email or directly at 404-555-5555 [not really]. I look forward to hearing from you.

Warmest Regards,
Leola (Director of Food & Beverage- Sheraton Atlanta Hotel)

I DEFINITELY wasn't expecting anything like that. As I said, in my mind, only my parents and grandmother ever read this stuff, no matter how high the visitor tally gets. I told her we'd certainly give Fandangles another chance.

Well, about a month later we finally were able to get the group of 8 of us to schedule a night - Tuesday - to come back. Since we had 2 out-of-towners last time, we did feel the need to select two replacements, who wound up being Matt and Rebecca. As soon as we walked into the place, the hostess definitely recognized Erica from last time, which was pretty funny. We were also spotted by Robert, one of the managers who remembered us from last time. He seemed pretty excited to see us as he and really everyone else went out of their way to make sure we were happy...and we were! We were seated in a little open room off to the side were served drinks as we waited on the rest of our group.

Eventually, everyone showed up and we were seated. There were 2 bottles of wine waiting for us by the table and we were then greeted by our server, Fletcher, who also couldn't have been nicer. We were told we would be able to order from the full menu (we did ask, because during restaurant week, it was a limited menu). So that was nice. Although I had planned all along to order the same steak I had last night because it was so good! So we ordered a couple of different appetizers for the table, I'm not a seafood person, so I passed on most of the stuff ordered but I was all for saving room for my steak! I did try something that I think was called a "Taco Tower" which was really good. Finally the main course was served, and I did struggle, but I somehow finished my steak. I think I was the only one to leave without any leftovers, I'd never been so full!!!! And even after the main course, Robert "made" us all order desserts and brought us all an after-dinner drink, which was a 50-year old Grand Marnier. It smelled SO good that none of us really wanted to drink it, but Robert came out a little late and made fun of us for sipping on it. So I went ahead and took a big drink and of course spilled a good bit all over my face. I may have gotten away with no one noticing that though! For dessert we pretty much ordered one of everything and each shared. Everything was soooo good, but I was so full I barely touched the chocolate cake + ice cream I ordered.

So, just like last time, the food was excellent. However, unlike last time, the service was excellent. The only other thing we could've asked for were a couple of hotel beads to sleep off our food coma's :) (kidding)

Me and Matt stuffing our faces, while Rebecca (left) and Alaina (right) acted like civilized human beings...for some reason

Matt, Stevens, Rochelle, Peter, Erica, me, Rebecca...photographer: Alaina.

I don't remember what this was but it was friggin delicious! Everything was!

More pictures to come if Erica ever gets her lazy arse around to sending em!!!!

And here they are!!!! Some sushi appetizer...

Rochelle & Stevens (2 future kickball stars for Team Canada: World Mounties)

Erica & Peter...

Me & Rebecca (2 more future kickball hall of famers)
If anyone wants my secret to partial one-eye red-eye reduction, let me know...

Monday, August 25, 2008

ATL Noise: Volume 6, Issue 3

Some fun shows Labor Day weekend...a bunch of 80's bands on Friday night and a show full of tribute bands on Sunday!

As always, what is listed below are concerts I am possibly interested in attending. So if somethings's probably because that band sucks :)

Fri 8/29/2008 "The Regeneration Tour" - Chastain Park Amphitheatre
Fri 8/29/2008 A Flock Of Seagulls - Chastain Park Amphitheatre
Fri 8/29/2008 ABC - Chastain Park Amphitheatre
Fri 8/29/2008 Belinda Carlisle - Chastain Park Amphitheatre
Fri 8/29/2008 Naked Eyes - Chastain Park Amphitheatre
Fri 8/29/2008 The Human League - Chastain Park Amphitheatre

Sun 8/31/2008 "Beer & Whiskey Festival" - Park Tavern
Sun 8/31/2008 Desire - Trib. To U2 - Park Tavern
Sun 8/31/2008 M.E.R.M.E.R. - Trib. To R.E.M. - Park Tavern
Sun 8/31/2008 Talk Journey To Me - Trib. To Poison & Journey - Park Tavern
Sun 8/31/2008 Van Heineken - Trib. To Van Halen - Park Tavern

Thu 9/11/2008 1997 - The Masquerade
Thu 9/11/2008 Finch - The Masquerade (you guys have probably never heard of Finch, but I like em A LOT!)
Thu 9/11/2008 From First To Last - The Masquerade
Thu 9/11/2008 National Product - The Masquerade
Thu 9/11/2008 Scary Kids Scaring Kids - The Masquerade
Thu 9/11/2008 Tickle Me Pink - The Masquerade

Sat 9/20/2008 Jim Gaffigan - Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre (2nd show added...very tempted, but it's over $50)

Wed 9/24/2008 The Mars Volta - The Tabernacle $35

Fri 9/26/2008 3 Doors Down - Lakewood Amphitheatre $25 and up
Fri 9/26/2008 American Bang - Lakewood Amphitheatre
Fri 9/26/2008 Finger Eleven - Lakewood Amphitheatre (Finger Eleven is on my short lists of bands I REALLY wanna see! Yay Canada! Boo Lakewood!)
Fri 9/26/2008 Hinder - Lakewood Amphitheatre

Sat 9/27/2008 O.A.R. - Verizon Wireless Amph. At Encore Park

Wed 10/1/2008 The Kills - The Tabernacle $38.50
Wed 10/1/2008 The Raconteurs - The Tabernacle

Thu 10/2/2008 Lewis Black - Fox Theatre $42.50 and up (anyone????)

Mon 10/20/2008 Alkaline Trio - The Tabernacle $33
Mon 10/20/2008 Rise Against - The Tabernacle
Mon 10/20/2008 The Gaslight Anthem - The Tabernacle
Mon 10/20/2008 Thrice - The Tabernacle

Sat 10/25/2008 Weezer - The Arena At Gwinnett Center My Tickets have already been boughted!!!!!
Sat 10/25/2008 Angels & Airwaves - The Arena At Gwinnett Center

Tue 11/4/2008 Dashboard Confessional - The Arena At Gwinnett Center $29.50 and up
Tue 11/4/2008 Panic At The Disco - The Arena At Gwinnett Center
Tue 11/4/2008 Plain White T's - The Arena At Gwinnett Center
Tue 11/4/2008 The Cab - The Arena At Gwinnett Center

Tue 11/18/2008 Kings Of Leon - The Tabernacle $37.50
Tue 11/18/2008 The Whigs - The Tabernacle
Tue 11/18/2008 We Are Scientists - The Tabernacle

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Everything's HOTTER in Texas

I don't know about everything being bigger, but everything's definitely hotter! (I'm talking actual temperature to be clear). I went and visited my former college roommate and original FSU garnet guy, Kevin in Houston this weekend. The thing I most took from this weekend was that I would never want to live in Houston. Not because I didn't have a good time, but because you can't go outside without feeling absolutely disgusting! Even walking around town after midnight, you just can't get away from it! It's not even temperature hot necessarily, but the humidity! Maybe I've been away from Tallahassee long enough to forget, but I can't imagine humidity worse than Houston this weekend.

Kevin managed to score himself the opportunity to rent out a penthouse in downtown Houston for the summer. It's so big that pretty impossible to keep the place cool during this heat wave (I think there's some kind of record number of consecutive days over 100 degrees or something). Our other friends Bailey & Luis (sorry Luis, but I still call her Bailey) came to Houston also with their 16? month old girl - Julia. Usually I don't like being around kids, but Julia's an exception...but it's obviously because they call her J.

I flew into Houston Friday afternoon and Luis and Bailey got me from the airport and we drove and met Kevin at his fancy pad. The parking garage wasn't so fancy, it was a normal garage, cars are packed in so much that to get into Kevin's assigned spot, we had to back in through the garage about 50 yards or so. Very strange setup. So anyways, we head upstairs and it was true...this place was ridiculously HUGE. Maybe it helped that there wasn't much furniture, just the same old futons I remembered from college! (Which reminded me of a Demitri Martin joke, "There's a store in my neighborhood called "Futon World", love that name..."Futon World". Makes me think of a magical place...that becomes less comfortable over time"). Although since then I think he's gotten a new roommate, complete with furniture, and more importantly...a TV! Kevin currently has NO television. How do people live??? Anyways, I'll get some pictures of his place together below...

So after getting the tour, hunger kicked in and one of the perks of living downtown, we were able to walk a couple of blocks to a Mexican restaurant. I ordered a frozen margarita, but only for scientific experiments of course. By the time the waitress got it to us (which wasn't that long of a wait) it was barely even frozen! It was THAT hot out (I guess I was supposed to mention we sat on the balcony). As we were finishing up dinner, it got a little cloudy and it cooled off a bit. We had to hurry back home because it was about to storm. Which I was pretty excited about. Recently, when I've been around storms...they're big ones! And we had a hell of a view! So, of course the storm (or lack-there-of) passes by without a drop of rain. After all that passed, we went up to the roof of Kevin's place and enjoyed the view. Actually the view was better from the balcony, you could see all kinds of people walking and driving around downtown. I've never seen so many people block intersections and run red lights as I saw there. At some intersections, when the light is red they have these cool blinking red lights right on the streets alerting people to stop. Never seen that before. After a bunch of people watching from up there, Kevin convinced me to go down to where the action is and take a tour of the club scene. We had no plans to actually go in anywhere, but walking around and looking around is just as fun. There were a lot of lines to get into places, with a lot of way too overdressed to have any kind of fun people. Not my thing I guess. If you can't go in with shorts and a t-shirt, I don't want in anyways! Besides, it's midnight, and by the time we did our lap around a few blocks, my back was soaking wet. Gross!!!! How are these people waiting in line all dressed up feeling? Sucks for them!

Saturday we woke up and grabbed some breakfast, then headed out to a nearby park for some kind of outdoor activities (nothing good happens when I go outdoors!). This was no exception of course. Things started out well, we kicked a soccer ball around for a bit, threw a football around, then came trouble. Kevin has these contraptions that are plastic, but I can only describe them as a combo of lacrosse sticks and jai-alai. You have a hard plastic ball and you use these sticks to throw the ball back and forth. I thought sitting this out would keep me safe. But no...while I was just laying around on a blanket...I got hit right in the face with the ball. Thanks Luis!!!!! But the injuries didn't end there. Bailey took a turn and had the ball go off her stick, up in there air, hit a tree (maybe) and right back to her nose. D'oh! Then, to top things off, Luis (I think?) pegged Jenny in the ear before everyone finally gave up on whatever that game was called.

We then went back to Kevin's place to rest up for dinner and our next event, which I was MOST looking forward to. Kevin managed to get awesome tickets for a preseason Denver Broncos-Houston Texans game. We were pretty much RIGHT on the 50-yard line, about 30 rows up. Which are about as good a seat as there were within the stadium. Obviously I'd never been to Reliant Stadium in Houston. I came away VERY impressed. It is right next door to the Astrodome, which I didn't know still existed. And I'm not really sure WHY it still exists! Next to the new Reliant Stadium, the Astrodome looks like a dump! But the very best part of this stadium... the AIR CONDITIONING! It is a retractable roof stadium, and thankfully the roof was CLOSED! It was probably 70 degrees in there. It was awesome! I don't really like or dislike either team, and the fact that it was preseason made it hard to root for anyone or anything, but it was a good game. It came down to a Texans field goal as time expired to win the game 19-16. At least there was no overtime!

After the game we took Houston's train thing, called "METRORail". It is pretty neat. It is a train, I guess...but it's more like a trolley really. It runs in the middle of the street, in it's own lane (although I frequently saw cars "accidentally" drive in their lane) it has to stop for red lights, just like all other vehicles. Hard to explain, but I've always been a fan of trains, so it was cool. It runs along Main Street, right in front of Kevin's place, and there was a stop about 2 blocks away, so that was good. From Kevin's balcony you can frequently see cars (accidentally?) driving in the middle lane, reserved for the METRORail. I wonder how many times they've hit cars? After we got back was another night of hanging out on the balcony...I'm pretty sure I'd do that every night if I lived there, pretty good people-watching spot! I was told that at 2am when all the clubs closed, well, of course I stayed up to see for myself. Nothing too exciting...I was disappointed and from there I had to wake up in a few hours. D'oh!!!!

Sunday morning we woke up early and got breakfast. Bailey, Luis and Julia headed back to Austin afterwards. Kevin was switching from the master bedroom to the other bedroom so that his new roommate could move in as soon as Sunday, so Kevin had a lot of cleaning to do. Which made for perfect nap time for me :) In between about 4 naps throughout the day, I did have to help him move his bed. What kind of vacation is this????

After all the manual labor was done, we were able to go walk over to Minute Maid Park (Home of baseball's Houston Astros). Literally, we walked was like 3 blocks away. Even I'm cool with walking that, although it was about 125 degrees out!!! For whatever reason, they weren't offering tours of the park this weekend, so we did our own tour of the outside of the stadium on Sunday. Outside the stadium were statues of Craig Biggio (future hall of famer, 2nd baseman) (left) and Jeff Bagwell (possible future hall of a famer? first baseman) on a replica baseball diamond, with the statues posed as if they were in the process of turning a double play. So i felt the need to pose as if I was "taking out" Biggio with a good hard slide. It doesn't really help that the statue is about 9 feet tall, but I did my best to break up the double play! We tried some other pictures around the bases but this was the best of the group. We walked all the way around the stadium before realizing it was still 125 degrees and left. Tried to find a place to grab some ice cream on the way back but it wasn't to be. So instead we went back to Kevin's place and I took another nap! I've never taken THIS many naps, I swear! But the heat just wore me OUT!

We took another turn of people-watching from Kevin's balcony when we spotted some people filming a commercial of some sort on the next block. It looked like it was for some haircut place. It was funny watching the reactions of people walking by and driving by as they were filming.

We then went out to China Town for some, uhhhhh, Chinese food! I hadn't had chinese food in a long time, so that definitely hit the spot! There were some very strange "creatures" in their water tanks. Hurray for General Tso and his chicken! (or at least they call it chicken) Then for the first time in my life, went into a Chinese Grocery store. Me and Kevin were the ONLY non-chinese people in there. Definitely an odd feeling. And personally, I thought it smelled REALLY bad in there. No clue why. Then we tried to go to Dairy Queen for some ice cream but for some reason it was closed! Why is it so hard to find ice cream in Houston? Maybe they have trouble keeping it frozen??

That pretty much did it for my weekend in Houston. I flew back to ATL first thing in the morning, had to wake up at 5am to catch my flight! Now for some pictures...and a big thanks to Bailey for making this blog TAKE SO LONG :)

Here's the ridiculously large kitchen...

A view from the outside, couldn't really get the camera to cooperate to make this a good picture

Nice view of downtown!

View from the patio...sporting my new douchebag sunglasses! Glad I got a haircut before being subject to this kinda heat at least, whew!

I was waiting on some more pictures from Bailey but this will have to do...for now!

Monday, August 18, 2008


At first I had a hard time getting into the Olympics, but Michael Phelps probably single-handedly got me interested. I'm sure a couple thousand other people feel the same way. I've mostly watched the swimming stuff, but the reason for this post is a shocking, disturbing argument I'm having with some work people. All my life I've never had any interest in watching gymnastics in the Olympics. To me, as far as I knew, it was very popular amongst women viewers, but not so much amongst the guys. I've been DVRing the Olympics the last few days and happily fast forward through the gymnastics. But last week I guess everyone said how awesome it was and even the guys at work were talking about it. I just don't get it. To me, it's just watching teenage girls jump and dance around.'s what I'm doing. I posted a poll at the top-left of this page. I want ONLY MEN to vote on this. Just give me a simple yes or you watch gymnastics?

BTW, did anyone watch me play volleyball last week? Too bad the equipment manager couldn't spell my name right! But seriously, it was very strange to hear my last name during a sporting event...apparently "Zhekov" and "Zaikov" are pronounced the same.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

An Atlanta Kosher BBQ Cook Off???

I have no idea if this is real, but the picture is too funny not to post. The best part is the sad look on the pigs' face. Which, shouldn't he be happy? Since he's not getting cooked!?!?!? Think Chic-Fil-A people!

I found this - of all places - on a blog about Thrashers prospects! Thanks Holly!!! It's probably legit. And to make it funnier, Congregation Beth Jacob is orthodox, she says.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A Rainout Rant

Sometimes I just need to vent. Last night I was going to the Cubs-Braves game at Turner Field. Just as we got there they decided to post-pone the game, because it had been drizzling pretty steadily for a few hours. A friend from out of town, we'll call him Jeff, since that may or may not be his name, had been planning on going to this specific game for months now. He's a huge Cubs fan if that matters. He spent over $100 on 4 tickets. Now he's got nothing and the Braves pretty much stole $100 from him. They rescheduled the game for a doubleheader today. Usually when that happens, they schedule a "twi-night doubleheader" where they start a game at 5pm and another one 30 minutes after the end of the first game. In that situation, the team will give you the option to exchange your tickets for any other game the rest of the season. But the greedy a-holes that run the Braves decided to schedule a "day-night doubleheader". Which means today there is a game at 1pm and another game at 7pm tonight. Any tickets from last night can only be used for today's 1pm game. What bullshit!!!! MLB should NOT let this happen on weekdays in my opinion. Do they really expect 40,000 people to call in sick the next day to watch a crappy Braves team? I know in Chicago, the Cubs have day games all the time, but you can plan for that ahead of time! They've GOT to know they're screwing over TONS of baseball fans and it's just not right! I'm sure there's something in tiny print on tickets that make it legal for them to do this, but it's complete horse-shit if you ask me! People paid money to watch a boring baseball game...let em!!!!!

On a less angry subject, yesterday at 5:01pm I got my 5,000th! visitor to this blog. Some dude from Madison, Wisconsin looking at the NHL Network Commercials I posted back in March. (You're damn right I keep track of this stuff, I gotta use my statstics degree for SOMETHING!)Pretty unbelievable to me, when I first started this blog, I figured only my parents and grandmother would read it. The power of the internet!!!! Pretty amazing! Thanks to everyone for stopping by!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

I am SOOOOOOOOO Not an Outdoors Person

I've already used the title "Why I Could Never be a Pierson" and it would apply here too. As a refresher, the Pierson's are a branch of my family, namely a bunch of cousins - Jon, Dan, Rob, Liz who are all VERY outdoors-types. I'll never understand. I pay my hard earned money towards a mortgage each month so that I can sleep in a BED, with a perfectly good ROOF over my head.

I can only remember one other time that I tried camping, it was probably around 1994 or so with my Kenny Rogers Roasters crew, I will now see how many names I remember in case they ever google themselves (say hi!), this will be fun - Nicole Bradley, Dawn Bradley, Amy Swisher, Michele England, Poppy Bilbra-Jacobs...somewhere I've got a picture of all of us (holy crap I found it!!!! Wow, you probably know how it is, when you see a picture of yourself from about 15 years ago? All I can say is wow) Anyways, it was in the middle of nowhere in Southwest Virginia, we rolled in in my yet-to-be-named FSU-Jew-Mobile (my dinky garnet Plymouth Horizon). We got there, setup a tent, took a picture and that's all I remember before it started DOWN POURING. So we threw everything we could in my trunk and everyone came back to my parents house and we used the basement as our campsite...complete with a functioning ROOF! Not to mention air-conditioning. I haven't had any desire to try camping again since.

My friend Rory recently graduated from, well, some kind of advanced schooling to get her PhD, sorry for not knowing all the details, I don't get paid to write this crap! For her graduation party she invited a bunch of people to go camping at Lake Allatoona (which is only about 30 miles from my perfectly good bed). But, as a good friend I agreed to come...for the day. There was an evite and everything where I made my intentions clear that I'm only going for the day and that anyone else who wasn't a camper was welcome to stay at my place. Apparently that decision was overturned and I was going camping overnight. I soon realized I wasn't getting out of this. So I sucked it up and would give it a try. Tracy came into town from Jacksonville, Kim - and her boyfriend Michael and his boat - came in from Birmingham. Tara and Jason were going (but Tara used the 7-month's pregnant excuse to get out of camping...I was jealous). So it would be fun, a lot of my friends were going.

The first mistake I made (besides agreeing to go) was to drive Tracy to the campsite. Something bad ALWAYS happens when we go places together. Off the top of my head, a few incidents - She blew out a tire on I-20 driving back from a weekend in Tuscaloosa; driving back to Jacksonville last summer, a truck spilled oil ALL OVER poor little Vickie. Tracy will happily help me name some more incidents I'm forgetting. As we're driving up to the camp-site, on (the) 75 (why are interstate's only preceded with "the" in California?), we heard a noise at one point. Looked back in my rear-view and didn't notice anything, kept driving, assuming it was nothing. A few miles later we got off the interstate and onto some windy roads when driving got a little tougher. I just figured it was because there was a ton of stuff in the trunk maybe. We pulled into the camp site visitors center to check in, then when pulling out of the spot, guess what!!!!

Of course! A flat tire! Not just a flat tire, the tire was barely even on the rim even. Now, we're on a mountain, I was parked in a spot that was on a bit of a hill, so I had some trouble getting the jack to do it's thing. It slipped off about 3-4 times and about a half hour before I finally gave up. Rory's sisters' boyfriend (did I get that right?) managed to get the car jacked up (sounds funny) and he changed the tire in less than 5 minutes. Not the first time I've been bailed out in a tire-changing situation!!!!

So after installing a poor little donut on Vickie, I let her chew on that for a while and threw all our crap into Jason & Tara's car (nice timing by the way! They showed up just as we were done!) and headed to the camp site. Things calmed down for a bit...settled in, grabbed a beer and setup a chair and just sat there. I guess thats what you do? It was cool though just sitting least it wasn't too hot out, there were plenty of trees and we were right by the lake. So all was going well, I did pass on the opportunity to go on a ride on Michael's boat, especially knowing Tracy was going...something bad was bound to happen :)

The most fun was probably watching Rory's friend (and my soon to be kickball teammate) Joel's dog swimming. (To clarify Joel's dog is not eligible for kickball I believe) That dog probably swam more in the few hours we were there than I may have in the last 10 years. It was also fun watching him and Rory's dog Piper go after a frisbee in the water. Especially when they finally gave up fetching it and we got to watch the frisbee slowly but surely float away. Eventually I did get in the water for a bit, then decided I'd even go on the next boat ride. It soon became evident that someone didn't want me on that boat. Almost came the clouds. Dark clouds. Even though the radar was clear (OH! Tracy brought her laptop, you a true camper!) We all know that the weather-peoples are never right, so it became obvious that the sky was about to explode all over us. First came the clouds, then came the wind, the thunder, the lightning, the rain...and just for the hell of it...let's throw in some HAIL for good measure. Luckily we were able to make our way to a bathroom facility in the middle of the campground site. The power was out, so it was pitch black inside the bathroom. I will admit this was a better situation than 2 weekends before when I was stuck on Pensacola Beach in a lightning storm with just an umbrella protecting (or, NOT-protecting) me! But the combination of those two weekends got the best of me...I had enough, I did NOT want to be there anymore. After the storm finally passed, they managed to get a fire going and I got a hot dog out of the deal before I got the hell out of there. If I had stayed, I know I would've been miserable and probably ruined it for other people, so I took one for the team and left with Tara and Jason, who took me back to poor little donut-wearing Vickie and then followed me back, going about 45MPH on "the 75". Ughhhhhhh! So I'm officially 0 for 2 in attempts to camp. Which reminds me of my favorite Bush-ism..."There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again." Well, I got fooled twice now...shame on you Rory!!!!!!

Here's all of us...I still don't understand why everyone's so happy? If you look carefully you can see some hail on the bottom left...I think

Did I pick the perfect shirt to wear or WHAT? Goes good with the Twister towel :)

The Next To Last Comic Standing?

So I just finished watching the season finale of Last Comic Standing. I've never watched the show before this season, but I figured, there's nothing else on this time of year and it's a bunch of people trying to do stand up comedy. Bill Bellamy is an absolutely awful host of the show and for the finale they had 5 finalists which "America Voted" on a week ago. WTF? Why not let the 5 finalists go up against each other to get to 4, then 3, then 2 FINALISTS! Isn't that what the word FINALIST means? The show can definitely be a lot better, ditching Bellamy would be a good start. He laughs at anything, maybe they pay him to. They had their "talent scouts" as Richard Belzer - a non-funny actor from Law & Order - and a guy from the Sopranos I think. Maybe someone can explain to me why NBC couldn't actually get COMEDIANS to judge this thing???

Anyways, when it got down to the final 5 it eventually wound up coming down to Iliza Shlesinger (the only female in the top 5) and a Dane Cook look-a-like-but-funnier in "Marcus". Marcus is actually hilarious. If he had a comedy CD out, I'd buy it. To me he was clearly the winner. But "America" votes. Is that really fair? Maybe I'm being naive here, but don't you think more women than men watch these shows and take the time to call in to vote? Now, Iliza was funny, but not nearly as talented as my opinion. Of course...Iliza won...LAME! Not that the winner of this show (this was season 5 I think) ever goes on to do anything, but I hope to see Marcus doing his thing sometime soon!
I'm pretty sure it was Marcus who had my favorite joke on there, and I know I'll screw it up because it was a couple weeks ago...he was talking about airport security and what you can and cannot bring on a plane with you. He said how it's clear as to why you can't bring a chainsaw, a gun, a know the obvious weapons on a plane. But a wrench is ok. I don't know about you guys, but...I've played the game "Clue" before...and Col. Mustard would disagree that a wrench is not a weapon!
(I'm sure it was much funnier to hear him do it than for me to type it!!!! But you get the idea)

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Kickball - Fall '08

Signups begin tomorrow for Fall 2008 kickball leagues and I'm planning on creating my own team this time. If you're interesting in playing (Wednesday nights at Brookhaven) drop me an email or leave a comment here...Team Canada: World Mountie needs YOU! (get it?)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

My New Favorite Website -

Yes, there is a blog, but the best part is a video called "The Nooner" which is hosted by Brittany Umar, who is not only easy to look at, but she's pretty funny too. It's just a 2-3 minute video every Monday - Friday that pretty much just makes fun of NY Sports. On the right-hand side of their blog is where the videos are. Check em out!!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

An Awesomly Horrible Dining Experience

This week is "Downtown Atlanta Restaurant Week". It's a yearly thing (in other cities too) where people can dine at "fancier" restaurants for a flat fee of (this year) $25 per person to try and encourage people to come back after a great experience. For $25 you get an appetizer, a main course and dessert. Looking back, I've now done this four times. Three times were, uhhhh, bad. A couple of years ago, some friends and I went to Ruth's Crap, errrr Chris Steakhouse. Not only did they barely cook my "medium well" steak, but there was more butter than steak I think. Two years ago, we went to a place called Trader Vic's. I can't really remember anything bad to say about that experience. Last year we went to a place called "O’Terrill’s". As soon as we got close to the place I realized that this ain't no fancy place! It's like a dinky sports bar, which I'd been to once after a Thrashers game. I wanna say the "fancy" menu included chicken fingers. Awesome. So much for trying new restaurants!

But this year topped any and all bad experiences. Me and some Sweetwater friends (Erica + 2 friends, Peter, Rochelle, Stevens, Alaina) had reservations at place called Fandangles (which I thought was a website to go to buy movie tickets?). It is in the Sheraton Hotel on Courtland St. Our reservations were at 7:30. Due some really bad weather we got there a little early to try and beat the storms and got into the restaurant about 15 minutes early. We hung out by the bar, Erica thought I asked for a Shirley Temple...and made me drink it. After that, due to manhood issues, I ordered a $7 (ughhh) pint of Guinness. They had a pool table set up in a terrible location by the bar, there was a wall on three sides of the table, without enough room to actually play pool, with a flat screen TV on one of em. As the Guinness commercial guys say...BRILLIANT!

By about 8:30 we finally got seated at a table next to another table who looked completely miserable. Within a few minutes we heard them complaining, ask for the manager who eventually took 50% off their check. I leaned over and asked them if we should even bother staying! We'd been seated for about 20 minutes by then without anyone coming to say hi. We all already knew what we wanted, hell, we found a pen and half the table needed a smoke break, so they circled on the (paper) menu what they wanted.

When we finally did get our waitress to come by, we ordered a couple of drinks with the idea that she could also handle taking our orders too. Uhhhhh, no. She took drink orders for 2 people...and left. We assume to get those drinks, but it took about 15 minutes or so before she came back. Repeat that process about 2 more times. They're lucky we're a laid back, fun loving group!

By about 9:30 or so, a different waitress came by to FINALLY take our order. The smokers of the group were on cigarette break #2 by now, so we were able to order for them. Progress!!!!! A few minutes later, our new waitress came back out to inform us that one of the appetizers - "Friend Calamari with Spicy Remoulade Sauce" - was not available, but they had some kind of shrimp something or other to offer in its place, which the waitress said was "awesome" (With her middle-eastern sounding accent, it made it sound even funnier)

It was about 10pm when the waitress came back with some good news! The manager has decided to buy our table a round of drinks (not quite 50% off, but he knew how to keep us happy!). The waitress was talking Erica into trying some type of wine that she kept describing as "awesome". The manager also explained to us the reason for the problems all night is that they had a "random fire inspector" come by to test the sprinklers in the kitchen. And, uhhhh, they failed. He said there was white powder all over the kitchen and that they had to use a kitchen somewhere else. WTF????? I don't think any of us believed a word of that, but, whatever, he was creative with the story.

Finally, around 10:15 they served the appetizers. I ordered "Jack & Coke BBQ’d Babyback Ribs w/ Fried Sweet Onion Petals" (really only because it included the words "Jack & Coke"). But at that point any food was gonna taste great...and they did.

For the main course, you got to choose from 3 dishes, time for some bullets...
  • Peach & Habanera BBQ’d Salmon over black-eyed peas and mustard greens ragout
  • Blackened Ribeye Steak over Roasted Garlic Mashed Red Skin Potatoes with grilled asparagus
  • Porcini Dusted and Grilled Airline Breast with wild mushroom & crawfish grits, sautéed spinach and onions and topped with a sage glace

(WTF is Grilled Airline Breast?) Anyone who knows me already knows I ordered the steak, and was daring enough to substitute the spinach for asparagus. By the time the main course did get to us, by about 10:45, I wasn't even that hungry anymore. The food was actually VERY good, but the fact that we had been there for over 3 hours kinda made that point...moot. (I don't use that word enough).

For dessert, I get to use even more bullets!

  • Southern Style Bourbon Pecan Pie with Caramel
  • Carrot Cake (how boring!)
  • Chocolate Chocolate Cake

I got the Pecan Pie, but told them to put it right in a box. It was Erica's friend Jamie's birthday, and they actually took VERY good care of her. Erica supplied the trick candles and they brought out her dessert with a bunch of candles and sang to her. They also brought her a present - a small brown fancy lookin box with a few wrapped also fancy lookin chocolates inside. The waitress actually asked for the box back, but then said just kidding. So that was funny. They also gave Jamie all three desserts in to-go boxes. Where's mine??????????

Finally at about 11:30 we were ready for the check, we gave one of the guys a few cards and some cash and he proceeded to count it in front of us, which seemed odd. Rochelle made a comment about it, then I asked her...did you just get here??? Are you really surprised by anything at this point?

In the end, we were there for over 4 hours, no one was leaving hungry or angry. We had fun, mostly laughing about the restaurant, but the food was excellent. Can't deny that. I've still got leftovers to look forward to in my fridge!


EDIT: On Friday afternoon I got an email from someone offering us an opportunity to give Fandangles another chance, "complimentary of course". I'll be sure to report back how our 2nd try goes!

EDIT #2:

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Pensacola, Day 3

And now for part 3 of Pensacola weekend, which I'm sure you've all been dying for.

After getting home at about 5am after the Molly Ringwalds show, I don't think any of us were up for any kind of excitement on Monday. Scott took the day off work and eventually the three of us got moving around enough to be in time for a McDonald's breakfast. One problem...for me anyways...There were about 12 breakfast combo's to choose from. Every single one had either bacon, ham or sausage!!!! What the hell! Maybe I'm the only jew to ever come through Pee-cola, but I was pretty upset. Didn't McDonald's used to have some kind of pancake breakfast or something? Not even a plain chicken biscuit combo? Oh well, screw them, I walked next door to Chic-Fil-A and brought that back to McDonald's. I win!

After that we went across the street to Target where Scott completed his only responsibility of the day - buying Toilet Paper. I saw that they had the movie Super Troopers for only $9, so I had to buy it! Then we went next door to Winn-Dixie (apparently they still exist) and bought me and Matt's only responsibility of the!

We went back to Scott's place and just hung out by his pool all day catching up. Scott taught us to never sign your life away to Direct TV, but I won't get into all that. We also finally found a good use for those noodle things you find around pools. We had some batting practice...

C'mon Piazza, I want the fastball!

Matt-Scott-J (Team photo!)

The original plan was to have Lauren meet back with us and leave town at about 6. Ummmmm, yeah, so 6 rolled around, we're still at the pool. Finally we actually realize this, and told Lauren to get on her way. We decided we'd have one last meal at...where else...WhatABurger. Where some more hell broke loose. Matt tried paying for his meal with his credit card and got it declined. Weird. He asked the girl behind the counter to try it again, maybe it got wet from all the rain. Nope. Eventually he wound up calling the number on the back of the card and wouldn't ya know it. They closed his account! Why? Well, they thought it was odd that he got an oil change in Atlanta on Thursday while, at the same time, bought a couple of hundred dollars worth of gas at several gas stations in South Florida!!!! Someone somehow got a hold of his credit card number, made themselves a card and got some kind of scheme going at some gas stations down there! Apparently this isn't all that uncommon, asking around it's happened to a couple of people we know. Luckily this was his credit card and not a debit card! It would probably be a bit tougher to get your money back if it were a debit card, where a credit card you could just dispute it. Or better yet, when they saw something suspicious, they just closed the account for him. They were so quick about it, he tried logging into his account right afterwards to see all the charges and nothing was there. I'm not even sure how they're gonna charge him for the oil change and all the gas he actually did buy this weekend!

Anyways, after all that drama we hit the road after and Lauren got back to our place at 3:30, at which point I parked, left a voice mail for my boss...and slept til about 10:30 or so.

As many complete disastrous events that occurred this weekend (hit by lightning, credit card theft!) it was still a blast!