Friday, April 29, 2005

No blogging

Lo siento for my lack of blogging, I feel like Michael... PS Good work on your blog this week, Michael, we'll see if you can keep it up. Hehe.

I'm super busy getting ready to move. I'll keep you all updated with how things go :) I was going to include my address so you would all know where to send my housewarming gifts but halfway through typing it I figured it's sketchy to post your home address on your blog. Good blog safety, Laura.

Just let me know and I'll forward you my address :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

New fun phones

Unfortunately my life of fun new free phones is about to end with the quitting of my job. But, look what Nokia has in store in the coming months. Word is some of these actually will come to the US, too :)

Lobo is Spanish for truck

OK not really but actually, yes it is. Ford is coming out with a new truck in the USofA targeted at the Hispanic population and it's named Lobo. My obsession with Los Lobos is documented, and continues.

As seen on TV?

The Powerseed seems like a big joke but I almost think it would work? The $50 device flashes a tiny green light every 30 seconds to help you pace your bites. A tone sounds every five minutes, telling you to stop and assess your overall satisfaction. I like the idea even without a half-hour of a tagline like "set it, and forget it" persuading me to like the product. I'm sure it's a rip-off, but I like it. Wish list item for all of you who are looking to buy me a welcome home present. Oh wait.

I love it

"If destiny has a heart, we will one day be friends." -- A reader

This is a quote the Fugly girls posted on their website. The reader could've been me - I feel exactly the same about the Fugly girls. But it wasn't me that was witty enough to create that phrase, email it to the Fugly girls, and get it posted. But it could've been.

Word of the day

Lupine. Did you know it? Comment. Now.

PS I now have a log from MyBlogLog that tell my how many people are visiting my site. And who you are. So if you are reading my blog and not commenting when relevent (and I know you well enough to know when/where you should comment) we are in a fight.

It's called layering

As the legislature debates a new DT Twins ballpark, the "what will we do if it doesn't have a roof?" question has arisen. The Tribune addressed it by making a Weather Tidbits fact sheet talking about April - October weather in Minnesota. I won't lie - MN is colder than MA. But not all that much colder. Zippy and I went to a Sox game April 15 - we wore jeans, a tshirt, long sleeve tshirt, sweatshirt, and beer jacket. Mittens could've been nice but as a whole, it was a quite effective strategy.

If Minnesotans can make it though winter, I'm pretty sure they can make it through a 3 hour chilly baseball game. They can, dare I say it, take inspiration from the Packers? Good lord, you'd think we were debating an outdoor football stadium.

And as an afternote, I would like to make the first prediction on my blog. Officially, I predict that within 1 year, I will advance from writing complaint/kudos letters to writing letters to the editor. I will update you when this happens.

News = suck

2 more reasons why the news sucks

#1 This morning there was a teaser about Nelly's music being banned. I watched and turns out, a Mass. HS has banned some Nelly and 50 Cent songs from prom because they're too sexy. Snippets from school administrators and students saying things about these "types of songs". They talked about the list of songs they'd give the DJ that were being censored and if he played them, he wouldn't get paid. Last sentence of the story "Some DJs are able to play radio edit version of the songs so students aren't offended by the lyrics - it's a great compromise for everyone."

For the love, are you kidding me? The story was not "songs are too sexy" it was instead not a news item at all - all they had to say was that explicit lyric songs, which tend to have sexy subject matter, are not allowed to be played at prom. Duh - I'm 99% sure that JCCHS didn't play any songs with swears on them at my HS Proms. Stupid news.

#2 I saw an ad today for sweeps. Normal, except it was a 30 second ad for the Channel 7 6am, 6pm, and 10pm newscast - about how you should be looking forward to watching the news in May because there will be great, riveting news next month.

"Look to channel 7 in May for breaking news; news that affects your life in New England."

Um, I'm pretty sure that if it's NEWS you can't pre-empt it by planning it out a month ahead of time just because it's sweeps. If this was the case, the courts would've kept Terri alive until April 30 so the whole Terri debate would've neatly coincided with sweeps. Sorry, channel 7, that's not the way it is. Rule: if it's news, you don't plan it out a month in advance. I hate you channel 7.

This is weird

Go to this website. I think it's weird.


One last story on Terri Schiavo. It's a look into her life which is different than anything I've read before.

Study at home

Study abroad has gotten a bad rap lately. Here's an article summarizing why you should consider post-poning or cancelling study abroad plans.

Yes, I love technology...

but I like marketing, too. Here's an article about product placement, along with the Q&A from Stuart Elliott from the NY I included below:

Q: I was watching "Live with Regis and Kelly" one day last week when Ashton Kutcher was a guest. He and Regis and Kelly were talking all about some strange new commercial for Skittles and it all sounded like a product placement. Am I right, or just suspicious?

A: These days, dear reader, when it comes to branded entertainment, you usually cannot go wrong assuming a paid placement was involved. In this instance, however, according to Joan Buyce, a spokeswoman for Masterfoods USA in Hackettstown, N.J., the Mars Inc. division that sells Skittles candies, "there was no placement or any effort on our part" to include the branded discussion in the show.
The commercial is getting some attention from non-celebrities, too, as evidenced by coverage in the April 18 issue of Adweek. In a two-page feature on "Creative Best Spots" for March, the commercial, called "Sheepboys," depicts two sheep with the faces of young men discussing new blended Skittles flavors. Young men are the target audience for Skittles, usually those with human hands able to open candy packages. Ms. Parpis calls the spot "absurdly funny," while Mr. Alexander says it "nails the Idea Trifecta: weird/funny/logical," adding, "My inner 14-year-old loves it as much as my outer 42-year-old."

Q: Just a note to tell you about a recent drive in the car with my 6-year-old daughter. She shouts out, " 'American Idol,' 'American Idol!' " I couldn't figure out what she was talking about.
I asked her, "Honey, why are you yelling 'American Idol'?" Then she pointed out the Ford dealership and begged me to turn around so she could ''see the 'American Idol.' "

A: And some people wonder why marketers are increasing their spending in the realm of branded entertainment. Thanks, dear reader, for that potential straw in the wind. Let us know in a dozen or so years whether the first car your daughter buys is a Ford.

Smells funny to me?

This website is weird.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Only is Wisconsin

Woman forced to choose 90 days in jail or donating next years Packer's season tickets to charity. Gotta love cheeseheads.

Actually, they might make Boston Sox ticketholders do something like this - maybe MA judges will change things based on this landmark decision?

To buy: fun notecards

Check these kitchy notecards out - super cute!

Sunday, April 24, 2005

I'm nerdy, it's not a secret

I'm estatic to spend my afternoon watching FDR: A Presidency Revealed on the History Channel. I highly recommend it, but thought there was a chance that this was a bit too nerdy for even me until I spoke with Gabe and he said he also watched it and really liked it. Yeah, I'm not too nerdy for my own good. Rating: Highly Recommended

News Alert: Pat Sajak of Wheel of Fortune fame, is a flaming

Conservative. His website has a disclaimer that the "Sajak Says" portion of his website may be political in nature so be warned.

Fun quiz

Check out this BBC Quiz basically about differences between the sexes. It takes about 20 min but it's fun. My score says my brain is more male than the average female.

Why are you doing this to me?

The Fugly girls shut down their website as of Friday. This comes after the Bad Date Club shut down a month ago. I check these websites more than any others of people I don't know. Luckily, I have now bookmarked Planet Dan and this will be replacing Fugly Girls. Not a bad substitute but I'll poor out a drink for the Fugly girls this week. Not that they died but you know what I mean.

UPDATE: Natalie - before you have a heart attack - I'm wrong. Fugly girls shut down the "comments" capabilities on their website on Friday, not their whole website. I'm dumb. Thanks for Alicia for the heads-up.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Jackson, MN hot real estate

A shout out to Julie for turning me onto a Craigslist posting for a property for sale in J-town - to be honest it's not even in Jackson, it's out in the country probably 5 miles from DT. And wow, what a property. Considering there are homes selling for $20,000 in the area, this $495,000 property seems a bit out of control except for the fact that it does include 2o acres (but not half a mule).

Strangely enough, I do not know whose house this is - the realtor's website says Owner: Erickson. I can only guess it's someone related to the Erickson's of Erickson Trucks - perhap's Jack's brother? Mom, help me out. Ooh, and Erickson Trucks has a second location in Racine. Good to know.

If living in Jackson sounds good to you, check out this realtor's site - there are actually lots of properties listed, including my friend Jenny Jerousek's grandma's house. Good times.

Mile High Club: Laura's Travel Newsletter

  • Since I'm a member of the "when-I-get-shitty-service-I-write-a-complaint-letter" club, I thought I'd share this item about if you get bumped to a different airline than the original one you bought a ticket on and you don't get the miles you wanted. Good to know.

  • As a rule you'll get screwed transferring miles from one airline program to another, but it's good to know it's possible. Here's an overview.

  • Orbitz's Deal Detector rules. It allows you to select the dates for travel (including if you have flexible travel dates), say if you'll only consider non-stop flights, pick up to three airlines to limit the search to (for your frequent flyer programs), and then to tell them to email you if the price drops below a certain $ amount. Perfect.

I take it all back

Anything I've said against the new Pope I formally recall. Because Jeb Bush Lauds the New Pope. Knowing that, I definately am going to go along with Jeb and take back anything I said because Jeb and I always see eye to eye so I must've been crazy to have said anything against Pope Ben. Oh wait.

I cross the street to Crazyland

For the first time, I went to a random person's blog and made a comment. I have noted that I don't like when people do this on my blog b/c I think they're crazy. Through the rule of "If a = b and b = c, then a = c" (if anyone can tell me the name of this geometry rule, please tell me - I googled for 10 minutes and couldn't figure it out) I am now crazy, damnit.

Here's what prompted me to Crazyland.

What year was hair mousse invented?

Reply with your guess. I'll announce the winner mid-week.

Free Frosties in the Bay Area

Wendy's PR efforts to combat the lying woman who planted the finger in her chili.

I am disappointed in the US media for making such a huge story out of this when it first happened considering the fact that the woman has a history of bringing claims against large corporations that haven't proved to be true. Not surprising the media does this, but it is disappointing.

And, also dissapointing is that I'm reading about the falseness of the woman's claims online now, but has the fact that she's crazy and falsified claims been the "teaser" story on your 10pm news? Has it been on the 10pm news at all? No. Not a mention. I think that TV news is bullshit and there is absolutely no point in watching it. Take that.

And speaking of the fact that the TV news sucks

After a quick Google, I found out that there are lots of stories about how much the news sucks... With all these sources, I feel like someone should write a college thesis on the subject. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Latinos are underrepresented on TV - "A measly 1 percent of the total national TV evening news programming was devoted to coverage of 10 percent of the United States population".

I also found an article about the fact that TV shows / movies have a disproportionate number of heart attacks portrayed. MSNBC questions if the nightly news is on it's way out (the answer is yes). And the Media Research Center sounds like the name of a nonpartisan watch group -- OH NO it's crazy conservatives at it again. Scary.

I also know there was a news story about a month ago that talked about the fact that the nightly news runs very few "real" stories on health riks - most of the stories on the news are over dramatized snippets (most running less than 15 seconds) that don't give the public any good information on real health risks. I tried googling this and couldn't find it - that's the 2nd thing I haven't been able to google today - bad day.

Until you can afford first class, tips on surviving coach

Seating Assignments
There are three kinds of seats: good, bad, and downright awful. has the skinny on them all, so consult before you choose. American has more leg room; Song and JetBlue have satellite TV. Primo seats are released on the day of: Leave early, check in online, or call the airline en route to the airport to snag that exit-row window.

Tools of the Trade
The catch-22 of reclining seats: Love 'em for you; hate 'em for everyone else. Sneaky knee defenders keep the seat in front of you in the upright position. (Who said comfy was kind?)
Load up your iPod at with a couple of books you've been meaning to, er, read. Time will go faster than a used Concorde. (By the way, noise reducing headphones really do work. Better than draping a blanket over your head.)

Coach? No! BYO Party
It's a mystery why tomato juice is everyone's favorite airborne drink: Sodium is the dumbest thing to consume on a plane. When buying your bottle of water, figure on a half liter per hour of flight time. Best snacks: Emergen-C and carrot cake Cliff Bars. Best souse sans hangover: a thermos of Rioja Reserve or a flask of eighteen-year Macallan.

Sweet Lullaby
Who still gets jet lag? Set your watch to your destination's time zone as soon as you're settled into your seat. (Do not wait until you land.) Then put on the fluffy socks you packed, pop a melatonin, and heed your watch. Flying to Europe overnight? Eat before boarding and avoid the in-flight meal. (Because, silly, who eats at 2:30 a.m.?)

Never go to sleep before takeoff. The engines will wake you up, and you'll spend the next two hours trying to get comfy. If you're flying west and are scheduled to arrive before 5 p.m., nap if you want. If your flight lands after 5, stay awake. When flying east and arriving the same day, stay awake. Red-eye? Sleep tight, hot stuff. Put the tray table down, make a tower of pillows, and lean over. (This won't work for anyone over 5' 5".) If you need a little helper, a pre-boarding glass of wine and two NyQuil could put you to sleep at a Metallica show.

Please note I plagerized this blog in its entirety. It's all from Daily Candy a super fun newsletter y'all should subscribe to. If there isn't one for your city, pick one for a city you like to visit (London, Chicago, SF, etc.) and the Everywhere version (which is not city specific).

Pope flub

During the Pope's big press conference to the media and onlookers yesterday, he addressed the world in English, Italian, French, and German. No Espanol you may ask? Um yeah.

One Italian reported questioned if possibly the pope was "shy about his Spanish skills" or Vatican staffers made a "grave error" in preparing the Pope.

Another Latin reported noted "The Latin world is the most faithful and the pope didn't speak Spanish" (Spanish speakers make up the majority of the world's 1 billion Catholics).

An Archbishop told a reporter although "it would have been nice" for Benedict to speak in Spanish, staffers from the Vatican Secretary of State believed "the Spanish-speaking world would understand the Italian" version.

ATTN: Spanish speakers - can you really understand Italian? I know the romance languages are related and have lot of cognates and similar structure - but really? You can understand Italian? If so, I'm impressed with the Vatican's ability to minimize the length of the the Pope's message by limiting the number of languages he translates his message into. However, I have a feeling this is like saying "just say everything in Latin - English is based in Latin, I'm sure people will understand".

I say bad form Pope Ben.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Minnesota Movies

A: What are Beautiful Girls, Joe Somebody, Fargo?
Q: Movies associated with Minnesota.

Attention people on the coasts - Fargo is in North Dakota, not Minnesota.

Beautiful Girls I always thought was set in Minnesota, but it's actually set in Mass. I'd say the two state accents are a 180 from each other so I'm not sure if I'm the only dumb one... Actually, now that I think about it, the reason I always thought it was set in MN was because of the ice fishing. There isn't MA ice fishing, Hollywood. FYI.

Joe Somebody was filmed in Mpls - not sure if it's actually set there in the plot of the movie.

The reason I bring this up is that a new Minnesota movie is on its way to theatres later this year - Wedding Photo.

It's never too early...

to get excited for the Minnesota State Fair Grandstand Lineup. I am so going to James Taylor, yipee. The rest of the lineup also looks good if you ask me. Good work MSF!

A church is not a building, a church is not a steeple...

Let's get excited for the Allen-Muckenhirn wedding. Here's the digs. Looks classy.

I'm looking for someone to head to Eau Claire early on Friday so we can fit a little Leiny's tour in prior to wedding festivities beginning. Any takers?

A few things

  • The British shoe bomber gets a jail sentence. The article is regular news - I just like the first sentence of the report "A British man was today sentenced at the Old Bailey, London's main criminal court". I love that the main criminal court is named "Old Bailey" that's so damn cute and British.

  • With military recruitment on the decline, shouldn't the Army advertise instead of cancelling their ad agency review? Ad agency know-alls: Is it normal for companies to completely cancel their reviews? If I was working on pitching a client and they cancelled I'd be super pissed.

Top 5 Movies to Watch - A LOT

1. Love Actually
2. Napoleon Dynamite
3. Coming to America
4. Old School
5. Bridget Jones' Diary

My criteria for this list is based on movies I could watch once per day for 7 days straight - and after that week of being bombarded by the movie, I do not want to stab my own eyes out with the thought of watching the movie again. I can't say from experience that this is the case with these 5 movies, but I think I could do it and still like the movie. Think about that.

The thing that ties all 5 movies together is that each has a great ensemble cast and extremely well written characters. I can honestly say that for each movie, it's hard to say which character is my favorite. Bridget Jones is certainly the easiest to pick your 2 favorite characters, but seriously, you can't pick your favorite character in Love Actually. And if you tell me you can, you are a liar.

PS I have watched Love Actually 5 times in the past 2 weeks which isn't my criteria but it's close-ish.

PPS I'd never watched Coming to America on anything but regular TV (TBS, USA) until this week when I watched it on HBO. There's a surprising amount of edited parts I enjoy with the uncut version.

Word of the day

Today's word is misanthropy. I was unfamiliar with the definition - did you know it already? New to you? Just trying to judge myself vs. my peers...

Thursday, April 21, 2005

More on the Pope

In case you've been dying to email the new Pope, here's his address: And if you do, CC me on it because I wonder what people email the Pope about...

And as promised, here's my idea about pulling the Papacy closer to corporate America... Conclave for CEO. You'll put all the top level CEOs in a large conference room (or if it was News America, into a midtown Manhattan movie theatre) and start conclaving. Here's my mostly unflawed reasoning:

  • If the conclave process wasn't effective, they wouldn't still be doing it 2000 years later (well this is highly debatable but let's roll with it).
  • It's a process full of rules so there's minimal confusion when Mr. CEO kicks the bucket/quits/sleeps with his co-worker and is pushed out - you just set the date, get everyone sworn to secrecy, and start voting and have the stuff to make the smoke white and black ready to go.
  • While I don't believe that the holy spirit would head over to the conference room where the CEO conclave would convene to help them choose the new HP CEO or Boeing CEO, I think that the business world can conveniently substitute shareholders/stakeholders instead of the holy ghost that will guide them to their decision.

Feel free to share this with the high ups at your company the next chance you get - just give me credit for the idea...

PS I found it extremely repetitive, ironic, and questionable that prior to the Conclave beginning the Cardinals had to formally be sworn to secrecy so they wouldn't talk about the process. Is this really necessary? I'd think that as Princes of the church they would already know the Conclave rules and you could gently remind them of the "no tattling" rule prior to everything starting on Day 1 and that'd be good enough. It just seems strange that you're telling men who've been priests for probably 50 years and have listened to a billion confessions and other secret things that they have to "swear to God" they won't tell what happens in the confines of Conclave.


I wonder if it's hard for left handed people to shake hands because they're using their 'off' hand to do it? I wanted to target this question specifically at my left handed friends, but I can't think of a single friend who is a leftie. Which is weird - the only people I can know that are left handed are one uncle and one former boss (and several baseball players I know of). And I don't think I'm missing people - I can name the cell phone carrier of nearly everyone I know so I should be able to recall which hand you write with.

Lefties - holler at me.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005


As promised yesterday, I'll share with you the tale of why I've visited 10 Kmarts this week, and will be visiting 7 more tomorrow...

Nokia makes phones for TracFone, a prepaid phone company. Many, many Nokia 1100s are defective and have been shipped to 800 Kmarts nationally so they're doing a recall. Conveniently, myself and my coworkers are scattered throughout the country and ready to help with a recall! (I later found out we're helping because Kmart workers are incompetent and ill-equipped to handle a recall.) So I got an email with instructions on visiting 17 Kmarts in my territory in order to "help" them pull the phones from inventory and ship them back. Sounds exciting, eh?

I enter the Kmart, attempt to find the electronics department in the dark, dirty store full of ickyness and then attempt to find an employee. After searching for someone (good lord why are there no employees anywhere???) I then politely requested that they track down a manager for me to talk to (a lengthly process as well). After introducing myself to the manager, I explained that TracFone was recalling the 1100, as of Friday they had X number in stock, and I was there to help them gather up the defective phones, have them boxed up, stick a FedEx prepaid label on the box, and have the box picked up later that day. Please note the word help - I'm there to help them out.

After presenting the paperwork verifying what I just told them, I got lots of strange responses, including "How come I haven't heard about this before?" (you don't read your email), "Why are the phones being recalled? (they're defective, retard), "What about phones we've already sold?" (customers can return them - are you unfamiliar with the process of returning things you bought, stupid?) and my favorite "Isn't this a little late in the day to be doing this?" (Um, it's 5:15pm, your store doesn't close till 9pm, and you're the 6th store I've visited after driving 300 miles today, Mr. Manager. I hate you).

I'm not sure how other mass merchants handle their inventory but Kmart was a sight to be seen. Items on the floor were somewhat easy to find (although not as easy as you'd assume) but the backroom was a mess. Most stores have 3-4 different places in the back they "usually" keep their backstock. Great idea because it equals no one knows where the hell anything is and they likely don't have the key to get into where they're kept anyway... Luckily, my background at 3M's packaging services came in handy as I taped up boxes and applied labels.

The best part was 1/2 hour after I visited the store when the inventory manager called me to say the found 3 more phones and what should they do with them? I explain that the memoI left with them includes instructions for mailing the phones back - just box 'em up, slap on a label, and ship them to the address on the memo. Essentially, the process I completed hand in hand with them less than an hour ago. Their concern - "But I don't have a label?" Um, it's a blank FedEx label - find one (they're supposed to have them in the store but no one could ever find them so I started bringing my own - free picked up at your local Kinkos/FedEx) and fill in the info and account number. After much resistence/confusion, I ended up FedExing them a blank label I filled in with the pertinent information to them to slap on the box. Ridiculous.

So aside from driving 300 miles in one day (not fun when you end up at the same place you started rather than far away from home i.e. a roadtrip) this was not a fun project, but I have some valuable takeways. I learned that Kmart store managers do not necessarily have all their teeth, if any HS seniors are debating if "college is for them" a tour of the local Kmart should have them ramping up for admittance essays, and that you can't assume people 18+ can multiply (as in 3x3=9 (sometimes they come up with 10 or 12)).

And I know why Kmart is going out of business / being bought out - everyone that works there is literally dumb dumb dumb. Seriously dumb. And their stores couldn't be located in worse places - little podunk towns or intersections from hell or the ghetto. Bad marks to the Kmart real estate group. (I know most of their locations have been there 25 years but still...)

I'll let you know if anything exciting during my Kmart visits on Thursday. I know you're dying to know what happens in my pathetic life.

Things to miss, things to look forward to...

Just wanted to quickly recap the things I'll miss about Boston and the things I can't wait to get to in Minneapolis with my pending (or impending - grammer correct me Zip) move:

Things to miss about Boston:
  • Red Sox / Fenway Park
  • The T
  • 3 championships in 2 years
  • The accent
  • Tom English's
  • Tour guiding my visitors
  • The North End aka many, many authentic Italian restaurants
  • Dunkin Donuts on every corner
  • My large apartment esp. laundry in my unit
  • Zippy
  • The beach at the Harbor 10 blocks from my house
  • Cheap flights to Europe (in theory only)
  • Many major cities within a 5 hour drive
Things to look forward to in Minneapolis:
  • Chipotle / Don Pablo's / The Otter / Rudolph's
  • Cheap cabs
  • Happy hour specials / Leinenkugels / music trivia
  • Charlie the hairdresser
  • Chicago (and those who will be living there) only being 5 hours away
  • 25% lower cost of living
  • Gopher sports
  • My kickball team-to-be
  • Alumni events and getting a mentee (will I like them like I like little brothers?)
  • Not walking up to the 4th floor to my apartment
  • MSP airport
  • All my friends :)


All done. I've submitted my 2 weeks notice for my job today after my bonus was direct deposited in my account this morning. I love direct deposit.

The steady stroll towards moving has now been quickened to a jog. Don't get to worried, considering my unathleticness, the chance of speeding up from here is highly unlikely.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Food Pyramid

I gotta give a shout out to the new Food Pyramid, revealed today from the USDA. It's the first to incorporate the idea of exercise. No shit - Americans need to get off their asses no matter what we eat. I like the online aspect - go to, type in your age, sex (yes please), and activity level and it give you a breakdown of what you should eat. I likey.

Classy move

Good pick, Britney and Kevin. They're moving to Vegas, near the hotel where the baby was concieved. That's such a classy move I feel like they should be moving to a classier city - London perhaps. Can you imagine? Britney would try to do a Cockney accent and mixed with her Lousiana drawl it would be awful. Makes me get goosebumps (in a bad way) just thinking about it.


  • How can I get Kip's "Yes I love technology" song to be my ringtone? $1 to you if you can hook me up with this for free or less than $3.

  • Netlix's new Friend profile is awesome. It's basically a spy tool that lets me see what my friends have out right now, what they just watched, what they just added to their Queue, and stuff like that. I likey.

  • Dunkin Donuts new commercial starring Johnny Damon and GM Theo Epstein is so damn funny. If you have an imagination (and I know you do) you can picture it. Here's the outline of the plot from the Dunkin site: In the 30-second television commercial promoting the iced lattes, Theo discovers Johnny concealing a balding head with a long-haired wig. He is shocked to learn that the centerfielder's signature locks aren't his real hair. When Johnny implores Theo not to reveal his secret to anyone, the savvy GM slyly glances at Johnny's Chocolate Dipped Iced Latte. Damon gives in to the persuasive GM and hands over his iced latte only to bump into him in the stands later in the day. After confidently saying to Epstein, "So, we're cool, right?" Theo replies, "I'm still a little thirsty. Johnny reluctantly hands Theo his second latte to ensure silence and a safely kept secret.

  • Is it a sign that I'm meant to be with Adam Hauser if I am exactly 5 months older than him? To the day? I think it may be a sign... He is a webmaster of his own site and runs a hockey camp. No news on Stuart Senden even with focused googling of him. I'll update you if I find anything...

2 nights a week isn't too much to ask

For those of you (Alicia) who have missed Scrubs and the Office lately, I would like you to make Tuesday "TV night". In addition to Sunday TV night with Desparate Housewives and Grey's Anatomy (have I blogged that this show is great?). That'll keep a nice ratio of 2/7 night of TV to schedule around per week. For those of you who say Th nite is already a priority, I would ask you to watch my Tues and Sun nite schedules and then see what you have to say. It's awesome TV.

As for the Office, after a very mediocre showing in the pilot/series premiere, it has gotten great. I literally laugh out loud 4-5 times per show. The storyline is SOOO un PC but you can almost see jackass at your job saying it. In fact, I think some of those things have been said at my last job. It's so f-ing funny. You must watch. Do it. (said like Ben Stiller in Starsky and Hutch)

Sorry for not providing links to all these shows, if you can't google them you suck.


Yeah - new pope. I think it's funny that nobody could tell what color the smoke was - everytime they had to wait for the bells. Good work JP#2 on adding the bell action so confusion was minimized. The media kept saying "often, the frontrunner doesn't end up the Pope" but this time that's exactly how it turned out - I think the 21st century just wanted to add additional drama to the situation. Bastards.

I thought it was interesting that the new Pope gets to pick his new name - at least that's the way it sounds on the news - Ratzinger got to pick Benedict. PS Michael - what does Ratzinger mean in Deutsch? I feel like it must mean something...

Posts coming soon - watch for them:
Conclave for CEOs
Why I've been to 10 Kmarts in the last 2 days
Ridiculous Tylenol

A Perfect Picture

In Southie today, I literally saw the epitome of Boston driving. A car marked "Student Driver" double parked. And there was a student driver along with a teacher in it. Do they "teach" double parking, or teach the right way to double park? I guess I'll never know.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Pain in the ass

Not that I don't want to fight the battle against meth addiction and meth mouth and other bad things associated with meth, but I'm not happy about this new Target policy. Having to go up the the pharmacist to show ID prior to buying Sudafed just sounds downright annoying - not that the Target pharmacies are subpar (I had a good experience in St. Louis Park involving a pharmacy beeper shaped like a v. large pill) but it seems like instead I could perhaps get carded by the checkout lady? Seems like that would be a somewhat less cumbersome process.

I sort-of encountered drug regulation at Target earlier this year. John was getting sick so I went to Target to stock up - I bought 2 different cough syrups, sinus meds, nighttime meds, and maybe one other and the register wouldn't let me buy it all in one transaction. In order to avoid inconveniencing me, the checkout lady just split it up into 2 different rings so I could buy everything (which voids the whole system I must say). She did comment that it was weird I was buying everything at once - I think it's not abnormal to stock up on cold medication when you start getting sick?

Is it just me?

Or is it both redundant and ironic that the Cardinals have to be sworn to secrecy for the Conclave? I thought this was something they could do if asked and that they didn't necessarily need to have a pact not to tell? Once again, Catholicos help me out.

Sunday, April 17, 2005


The G-7 is a conference for the 7 most powerful countries moneywise in the world to discuss the rest of the world's $ situation. As I thought about who exactly these countries would be, I knew the US and UK. They started talking about Japan so I knew that was one. Aside from that, I only had a few guesses but was disappointed I didn't have a clearer idea of world powers for banking/money... I thought I'd look it up and recap it here:

The G-7: Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States

Saturday, April 16, 2005

Trading Places

In a strange move, my sister and I are trading places. I'm moving back to Minny soon, and she's moving to NYC this summer to do Teach for America in the fall. Strange coincidence, eh?

Congrats and good luck to Erica.

Friday, April 15, 2005


Robert Verdi will be in Minneapolis this week and the Tribune did a little interview with him... All normal answers except the following (mostly ad libbed except the direct quote below):

StarTribune: Any plans of special things to do while in Minneapolis?
Robert Verdi: No firm plans, I'll be working long hours so I'm not sure what I'll have time for. "A friend arranged for me to have a walker who will be my beard." I'll go online and check things out and roll with it.

I like to think I have a fair grasp of the English language but was confused by this sentence. What is he trying to say? I thought "beard" may have an alternate definition of which I was unaware... Not the case according to I am left clueless as to what Robert is talking about...

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Geeky stats... and what's w/ SD?

This article summarizes population trends in the US - and 2 of the fastest growing counties are in SD? The county east of Mitchell and the county south of Sioux Falls. Why - who knows?

On a related note, this article is about the richest zip codes in America. I was excited that I've visted #1 (Atherton, CA). No wonder the people on the coasts ignore the middle o the country, Chicago not counting, the Midwest is not where it's at in terms of fancy zip codes...

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Don't say Yes

Am I dumb? I had no idea what the Inland Empire was when I saw it listed as a Craigslist community. If you don't know what it is either, here's the answer.

Not much is new

I've been up to not much lately. Over the weekend I had friends in town - from MN and NY. I'd post pictures of us but Hello won't let me - I've also been trying frantically to post pictures of Harry and Wills from Saturday's wedding...

I'd say the highlight of their trip was touring Fenway Park. For just $12, we got an almost 2 hour tour of the park and it was awesome. We got to see them practicing for Opening Day ceremonies, including handing out the rings and dropping the championship banner. So fun, plus loads of fun photo opportunities. I'm sorry to all of you who have visited me in Boston over the last 2 years that I never brought you there - my bad.

Other than this, not much new with me. I am reading Kite Runner for book club - I like it so far and have high expectations for it. I found this blog I really like - she was on Bill Maher listed as "Blogger" so I thought I should check it out. It's my style - I especially like her blog on the coverage of the Pope's funeral.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

News from the Pope

Article: RE: The Pope.

Monday, April 11, 2005

How could I possibly forget...

Hot Seth.

One more person I'd like to play "Where are they now?" with. The last time I played the responses were much appreciated.

On a completely unrelated now, I'm watching the Miss USA pagent right now. They are pretty girls, but when they talk and say their names/states, the look on their face is totally stripper. Not a surprising finding, but notable nonetheless.

Do you answer your phone 24/7?

A study conducted by an ad agency shows people answer their phones almost 24/7 no matter what they're doing. Check out some of the examples listed in this article.

Almost like Tom Jones but not quite?

So I was looking at a job posting for an Account Exec with The Tom James Company. I thought, hmm, what's that? So I checked out their website. Um yeah. It's a service company that works like this:

"A highly-trained Tom James Wardrobe Professional will visit your office - according to your schedule - to meet your clothing needs. In a matter of minutes, they will create a presentation personalized to your taste and requirements, be it a directional design of the moment or a more discreet ensemble of quiet elegance."

Can you imagine who they hire as "wardrobe professionals"? I can almost guarantee it's no one you want creating your wardrobe for you. This just seems uber sketchy - they try to make it out to be couture but I bet it's more like Newport News than anything...

Sunday, April 10, 2005

French benefits

This commercial for Fed Ex that has employees calling out an employee as being wrong all the time - example in point that they get "fringe benefits" not "French benefits". It's so damn funny b/c I'm sure there are people that are surprised to learn from the commercial it's NOT French benefits.

Ooh, I'm trying to post a picture but Hello isn't working right now, making me crabby.

No reading would be hard

This guy is a writer for the Boston Globe and implemented an interesting test: He decided to try to abstain from reading for a week. I can imagine this would be hard to do, mostly with lack of interneting (he found this was the toughest to lose, too).

Joe's blog - I likey. He a past post, he states "there's a documented crossover audience between Howard Stern and NPR." I wish he would've linked to said "document" because I'm not sure I can believe him - note what I blogged about the NPR/Stern connection in January. He is part of the media so he may be privy to statistics about radio listenership so I'm not calling him a liar, I'd just like to see the data.

Saturday, April 09, 2005


I was checking out the Timberwolves schedule after their loss last night and, wow, Kevin Garnett. The high scorer and high rebounder for each game is listed, and he fills literally 90% of those spots. I knew he was a big part of the team but good lord. Impressive.

Friday, April 08, 2005

No embalming?

So they don't really embalm the Pope any more than they need to in order to make it through the public viewing. Why not? It sounds like this has been their practice for a while, weird.

Also, the article talks about one of the past Popes -

"John XXIII's body was in excellent condition when it was exhumed from the cramped grotto under the basilica in 2001 - 38 years after his death - and moved to the main floor following his beatification."

I was under the impression that bodies began to decay within a few days even with embalming. Apparently I'm wrong. I know the Pope has a special 3-coffin system to prolong the body breaking down but who knew it could last 38 years. Maybe Mr. Pope has "special help" in his body staying in tact?

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

And people bitch about celebrities for role models...

Try this one on for size.

John Daly, pro golfer
+ Hooter's spokesman
+ Hooter's regular
+ 5th wife
+ this wife and her father are in court for laundering drug money
+ home state: Mississippi
C - L - A - S - S - Y

Public restrooms

One thing I've learned in the last year of being a traveling salesman are the good and bad of public bathrooms. The worst part of my job, by far, is using mall/store/gas station public bathrooms 5 days a week. Icky.

However, I have summarized my recommendation for best public restrooms - keep in mind I've visited 6 stores on average per day, usually 3-4 in malls. So I given many a try and here are my top picks:
  1. Nordstroms - v. nice
  2. JC Penney - near the furniture department, pretty sure only 2 people/day use them
  3. Best Buy - again, low usage - nobody knows they're there

Mucho Swiss Shoe News

I was reading an article that summarizes the footwear market in Switzerland and found this paragraph especially funny: (PS Don't ask why I was reading about the sneaker market...)

"All leather, Western boots, made in the U.S., are only a small niche product but they have an excellent reputation, especially among Swiss Country and Western fans. The boots are renowned for their design, durability and quality. Authentic U.S. "Cowboy Boots" are very appealing to Swiss customers, as they are considered to be the only "real thing" and are associated with the American Way of Life. In order to establish successful business relations with Swiss footwear importers, U.S. companies should remember that the Swiss market is small and that adjustments in minimum order requirements are therefore absolutely essential. Trade sources frequently mentioned that they are only interested in importing U.S. footwear if they are given the opportunity to order small quantities of individual items."

The Swiss are the Carrie Bradshaw's of the world, except they purchase for functionality:

"The average Swiss consumer bought 5.43 pairs of shoes last year. This puts the Swiss at top of the chart (worldwide, the average was 1.72 pairs per year). Despite this position, the average Swiss is not prepared to spend a lot of money on shoes, as those are still very often considered to be a necessity rather than a fashion statement."

And finally a bit of American shoe news - average price/pair for women's shoes in the US in 2004 is $35.02. Are you kidding me? I think this is silly low - seriously for every 1 pair of $100 shoes sold there are 5 pairs of $20 shoes sold in order to make this average. And for a $500 pair, you need to sell 50 pairs of $10 shoes. Walmart must sell a lot of shoes to make up for Milanos.


Here's a fun article that details the "best" deals when redeeming miles for flights - some airlines let you redeem tickets for up to 10,000 miles less than other carriers. Something to keep in mind when booking your award travel.

FICO FICO What's your FICO?

While I regularly pull my credit report in order to make sure nobody is messing with my identity, I don't have a clue what my FICO score is. I haven't bought a house nor have I financed a car, so it isn't like I've avoided this score, but I just feel like I should know what it is. Do you know your FICO score w/out having done the house or car thing?

Do we think I should pay $15 to check my score - it's easy w/ (a Mpls based co., good items for the "where is this company based?" trivia game).

Another finance related question - which should I go with - Wells Fargo or US Bank (I'm looking for a free checking account and that's available at both banks)? I'm pondering which is better...

An apology is in order

I'd like to apologize for my excessive blogging lately. While I can and will blame this on my general sense of boredom and loneliness, I will attempt to limit myself to minimal posts/day. I'm not promising anything though. Lo siento for the inconvenience.

Monday, April 04, 2005

You might be white trash if...

I have bad news to report. Johnny Damon might be white/Asian/whatever else trash :( He appeared on Regis and Kelly this morning looking v. hot in a nice suit and talked mostly intelligently about his new book Idiot (bad book title but forgivable).

However, the pictures from his wedding show a trashy side.
  1. His wife #2 looks like an ex-stripper.
  2. He wore what looks like a dress shirt with the sleeves cut off for his wedding.
  3. Bride and groom got their hair braided in conjunction with the wedding (though not for the wedding, thankfully). I'll grant that they were in Jamiaca which makes it slightly more acceptable, but not much.

Bad news for you Heidi. Your hottie may have another side you don't want to see.

Volunteer border patrol?

The idea of "Minutemen" volunteering to help guard the Mexico-US border just doesn't sound like a good idea. Thank you to NPR for providing interviewers with some of the Minutemen and those staked out protesting the volunteer border patrol - I like that they're keeping me in the loop...

Per the sounds of the Minutemen interviews, combined with my idea of the type of people that would volunteer for this duty, it just seems like an accident waiting to happen. Not to mention that it seems like a short term solution to a long term problem - if you consider illegal immigrants a huge problem... because I'm not exactly sure that I do...

This just makes me think of Mary's second cousin from San Diego that is offical border patrol on the Cali - Mexico border...

Point - Counterpoint - another blogger's opinion of the Minutemen.

Change of wedding plans

I am thinking that the proposed change of date of Charles and Camilla's wedding is more a sign of respect to the Pope rather than a true scheduling nightmare. I can't imagine more than 10 people are going to be "invited" to both the Pope's funeral and the wedding - and the Queen isn't going to the wedding so it's just Tony Blair who has a conundrum.

What percent of Brits are Catholic - maybe 5%? 3%? 2%? Not many... And even if they were, they'd be able to be glued to their TVs for the funeral and wedding - do remember the Brit's work ethic and attention to celebrity...

UPDATE - I was wrong. I assumed the Queen rather than Price Charles would attend the Pope's funeral. Wrong. Wedding rescheduled to Sat AM - if you've already picked up your April 8 wedding memorabilia, good job. It's expected to surge in value since they're actually getting married the 9th. Hope you got in on this one, Marc, like you did w/ Pope Soap on a Rope.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

I agree

I like this take on Desparate Housewives - I don't watch Lost so I don't care about that side of the story... The author of the article has a blog - and she's originally from Mpls and she still writes about the Cities - that's fun.

I like this article on the Twins team - shared with me by Wade.

The Bad Date Club Blog has been shut down due to their cynicalness. Alicia called this out about a month ago and she is right. I'm interested to know what their recent bad blogs were that resulted in the shut down.

Grey's Anatomy, a new show on ABC, has gotten good reviews. I likey.

More on the Pope

I keep having wonderings about the Pope. This article talks about the Cardinals coming together to plan his funeral. Makes sense - except there is no mention of his family. While I realize John Paul II's parents are out of the picture and he obviously doesn't have his own family (unless, like in the di Vinci Code he actually -- ooh I don't want to give it away) but what about sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews? Does he still have a family or once you get Poped you don't have a family anymore? Input from my Catholic friends, please.

UPDATE: My friend Joel let me know that JPII's parents are dead, his brother died in his 20s and that's that for his family. FYI.

The technology guru?

Who knew the Pope was big on technology? I still bet he isn't as good as Bejota at advising me on technology related questions, but props to the Pope. What do you think his email was -

However, I do have a problem with one line in the article:
"He also earned a place in history as the first pontiff to embrace computer technology."

Hmmm... he's been Pope since the late '70s. I'm pretty sure other popes haven't had the chance to "embrace computer technology" like he has...

But anyway, I like the note in the article about the Verizon service that you an sign up for in order to get daily texts from the pope. Good idea, Catholicos. As the article stated, "People are always trying to find ways to market His Holiness." Hmmm... an avenue to look at for job opportunities, eh?

Too many lists

I think things may have gotten a bit out of control when I saw an ad for E! 50 Steamiest Southern Stars. I think these lists are getting too niche. Don't get me wrong, I love countdown lists - I got wrapped up in Bravo's 100 Greatest TV Characters yesterday...

Seriously what's next? E! 50 Hottest Lefthanded Stars? VH1's Top 50 Moments at Concerts in California? Sillyness.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

48 bottles of beer for $20 = cheap beer

I got the best deal ever on one of my favorite beers - Harpoon's Winter Warmer. OK, I know its April and a bit late for Christmas beer but it tastes good to me all the time. The Harpoon Brewery up the street had excess inventory they were looking to move so they connected with a charity organization and had a 1 day fire sale. $10 for a case of Winter Warmer and all the $ they collect goes to the charity.

So I got 2 cases of beer and essentially gave $ to a good cause. Yipee!

New Pope

While it is sad that the Pope has died, I'm looking forward to everything that unfolds in the next month as they elect the new pope. I'm going to be referencing the Di Vinci Code throughout - I'm looking forward to all of it playing out.

An article about who might be the new Pope.

The Farm: Angola, USA

I just watched this documentary on Starz. It's a profile of the bloddiest prision in America (or at least it was at one time) where nearly all prisioners are serving life sentances in a state that is known for denying parole to virtually everyone. I highly recommend the movie however it is not Netflix-able - I requested they add it.

A couple of things about alcohol...

2/3 of Americans over the age of 21 have drank alcohol in the last year. Do I have a highly skewed view of the American population or does this seem low? Out of everyone I know, I can think of only a few people who don't drink - my aunt and uncle, John's family, that's about it. I'd say less than 1/100 people I know haven't drank in the last year. As much as I'm sure that it's the South that doesn't drink as much, I still picture Southerners sitting on lawns drinking liquored up iced tea and mint juleps and lawyers in the South drinking whiskey in the afternoon and having drinking lunch meetings.

Maine's #1 alcohol is coffee flavored brandy. The state consumes more of it than any other state in the nation. Weird, but makes me wonder what the #1 liquor is in the other 49 states? Any guesses or confirmed #1s?

I like the idea of the Museum of the American Cocktail. It really exists in New Orleans. The city also has several other museums dedicated to food and drink.

The area of the United States, commonly known as the Bible Belt, is also known by doctors as "Stroke Alley".

On the interweb on the plane

So I like the idea of internet access on airplanes approximately a hundred times better than the use of cell phones during flights. Business people could be in contact with work and get stuff done on the plane, and we would only be subjected to the pit-pat of fingers on keyboards instead of people yaking about shit in the seat next to us. If this were affordable, I'd consider doing it. Plus, all the business people can expense it so that's cool.

I also like the comments in the article about in flight internet access potentially being an income source for cash strapped airlines. I think airlines should focus on add-ons rather than raising rates and cutting expenses - this is how virtually all other businesses make profits.

I tried to think of more things I'd like on the plane and would be willing to pay for... NOT $5 for crappy headphones and not $10 for a crappy sandwich... Hmmm... what would I like on flights and be willing to pay for...

1) Access to satellite TV - live TV w/ lots of channels. I know JetBlue does this on their flights for free, but I think I'd pay $5 for this type of access on a regular flight.

2) Martinis

3) Internet usage as outlined above

4) Chipotle

5) Massages

Drunk Clowns?

First of all, Alicia - be scared.

Christina sent me a link to a site outlining her plans for today - upon entering I got confused. What the F? From what I can tell, it's a pub crawl w/ a bus in Oshkosh where people dress up like clowns. Gotta love Wisconsin.

Christina will need to report back and let us know how it went...