Saturday, December 31, 2005

Seasoned. Broiled. Baked.

New Year's Eve Eve has come and gone, and we've got the scars to show for it. There was an awesome turn out - and only a couple wine glasses were broken. Those things are disposable in this house. I stopped by Homesense on yesterday to pick some more up. They had a box of 12 for $19.99. The clerk asked if I wanted to check if they were all undamaged - I told him "Why? They're going to end up broken tonight anyways." Not sure if he understood, but who cares.

Here's some pics - more later. Other than that - we're all off to the Shantzes for New Year's Eve (regular Eve) - and another night of drinking. Oy.

Happy New Year!!!!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2005

As we know

Tomorrow is the New Year's Eve Eve party. Here is the alcohol that will be at the party. It's a bring year own beer/liquor party - but hey, i'm a good host and I always have a supply on hand. For some reason, the LCBO (the liquor store here in Ontario) does not sell anything with more than 40% alcohol - so all they have is the red lable Smirnoff. I'm not a vodka purist, but I do like my 100 proof - so thankfully I managed to aquire two 1.75ml (60oz) bottles of the blue label Smirnoff from a friend of a friend who found it when it fell off the back of a truck. How much difference does the 10% really make? Well, I'm not sure - but it just makes me feel better.

Out in Utah they only have 3.2% beer. They're mormons, so I guess that could be considered progressive. When I was out there, I asked the beer distributor if there was a difference - and he told me that 5% beer isn't really 5% because they get the alcohol percentage off the entire case, not the individual bottle. Here in Canada, they say their 5% is truly 5% and they view American beer as absolute piss. After two years, I have to say - I can drink a lot more beer in the States when I visit. Is that an effect of drinking a higher alcohol content here? Once again, I have no idea.Colorado has both 5% and 3.2% beer. Supermarkets can only sell 3.2% and liquor stores sell 5%. I'm told this was because at one point, Colorado had two drinking ages - where 18-21 could drink 3.2% and over 21 could drink 5%. That is ridiculous - but then again, it's Colorado. Oh snap.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

We're in the nurse's office

The big New Year's Eve Eve fiesta is this Friday - I would like to know how many people are coming, but 45 people haven't responded to the Evite. What the fuck is the point of making a damn Evite if people don't respond? Next time i'm just doing word of mouth and LOST-ish cryptic emails.

I'm really looking forward to this party - hell, I look forward to every party we have or I get to go to. For too many years, I missed out on some good oportunities because I was a freaking idiot. Since I came to my senses two years agao, i've had a much better time. In Florida I owned a really nice house - the first party I threw, well - fifteen people at most showed up. That was the best one I had there. No one ever really accepted an invitation to come over, and no one ever threw a party - so the social scene was hella lame. Bryan (bless his soul) was the only one who ever had people over - and he's from New England, so go figure. Genghis and I would head over for wings and beer and massive amounts of video game playing. My brother would end up on the floor with Brady the dog in what some would consider - compromising positions. Good times for all.

Let me rant. Much Music is showing this year's MTV Movie Awards. The band Yellowcard (who i've never heard of) is playing Simply Red's "Don't you forget about me" as part of a tribute to "The Breakfast Club". It's not the tribute that is getting to me - it's the song. This song was chosen as the my class song when I graduated high school. Now I graduated high school in 1994, many years after this movie came out - and as far as i'm concerned, too soon for any kind of irony to develop that would make it ironic that we chose the song. The class council chose it out of some deranged desire to cleanse my high school of any originality. I attended the Palm Beach County School of the Arts (now Dreyfoos because Alexander Dreyfoos gave a shit load of money). The school itself was a great idea - a magnet program for the entire county. You had to audition to get in, but it was still public - so everyone had a chance, no matter what your background. The problem is, with everything in life, once people started having a good time - the shit got shut down. Two cases in point - First, we had a chance to pick our mascot. The popular choice was the "Headhunters". What was the final pick? Jaguars. Fucking Jaguars man, and there aren't even any jaguars in Florida. Second - we had spirit week instead of homecoming (we had no sports except for soccer, and soccer isn't a real sport) - and each day had a theme. One day was Gender Bender day - and it just happened that a photographer showed up that day from the Palm Beach Post. The next day a photo was printed of a guy dressed in drag (it was an arts school, what do you expect?) - and of course the editortial page the day after was filled with conservative right wingers asking how the school board could support cross-dressing. It was a joke - it wasn't really cross-dressing (for most at least) - but that joke was lost on most of the county, so spirit week was ripped to shreads.

What's my point? I heard a guy define art as "...something that will piss off at least one person..." and i've always liked that. Anything worth doing is worth doing right, so pissing someone off is right. Is that A to B to C logic?

Let's review movies -

"Fantastic Four" - ***. It's predictable, but funny.
"Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" - **** way better than the original.
"40 Year Old Virgin" - ** Not as funny as I thought it'd be.
"The Island" - *** as predicatable as "Minority Report" and "Paycheck". It's really the same movie.

Monday, December 26, 2005

They sing together in the kitchen

I'm having trouble typing because I cut my finger nails too close. The tip of my right index finger is inflamed. Shooting pain jolts up my arm every time I press a key. So why I am writing then? Could I not take a break? Well, I could take a break - there's a classic "Battlestar Galactica" marathon on Space right now and TBS is showing back to back "Friends". On CBC, they are showing a Doctor Who movie, and in half an hour the South Park where Cartman forms a Christian rock band is on.

All good excuses to bugger off and get even more fat - but no! - I will not rest. Ok, I completely lied. I am going to rest. Happy Boxing Day!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Oh, the poet.

I'm trying to concentrate on writing, but we're watching "Six Feet Under" and there's just too much going on. It's a repeat, but it's new for me. Due to my business travelling days, I've watched most shows in a very swiss cheese manner. I've given up trying to watch "24" for the last four years, it's impossible if you miss on episode. I've watched every season of "Six Feet Under", but they're all mangled together into one super season - the Pangea of seasons. Laurie is addicted to the show and is watching it for the first time. The problem is I know what's going to happen, just not when. Then an episode will air that i've never seen. Those episodes explain the huge gaps I have in my memory, kind of like how in "Memento", the guy kept on leaving himself clues.

Thanks to magic of DVD and long layovers - i've been able to watch "24" and not miss an episode. My brother also likes the show, and I thought it would be a good idea if we played pretend "24". He does not think this is a good idea, being that i'm nearly 30 and he's 26. One time he called me and said he was having problem getting onto the network at school. I asked him he need me to have Michelle open up a port on the firewall.

"What?" he asked.

I said, "Jack, just tell me what you need me to do."

"Are you playing '24'?"

"Yes, and you have to call me Tony."

"Aren't you 30?"

Sure, sure - i'm 30. Does that mean I can't play pretend "24"? I'm an educated professional and I enjoy pretending i'm a government agent charged with protecting America from both internal and external threats - and within twenty four hours.

Enough about this. My first Christmas in Canada is almost at an end. I've made out like a bandit this year, "24" season 4 box set, a couple sweaters, a bunch of chocolate, a bad ass tool set. I've eaten a lot of food - fondu and turkey and cookies. Cookies. Cookies everywhere!

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah and see you later this week! NYEE coming up Friday. Word is bond son.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Wake Up In The Afternoon

We're almost at the end of the year and that means that there's a gross amount of retrospectives on tv right now. This morning I was watching the Much Music "Best of Much on Demand 2005" retro. For those who of you who don't know, Much Music is the Canadian version of MTV, except that they play music videos. Oh, you got served MTV. Kelly Clarkson's video for "Since You've Been Gone" was number something, who knows - it doesn't matter. I will be adding that song to my list of perfered songs for karaoke. Yes, seriously. My current karaoke playlist is composed of songs by Avril Lavigne, Guns-N-Roses, Ashlee Simpson, and David Lee Roth (bibbidy bibbidy bop!). I once sang karaoke in a Korean brothel. True story.

There's a part of me that wants to write this story - but for today, I think I will just be cliche and wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Charming. Thanks. But.

I'm watching "Degrassi - The Next Generation". This show is some serious shit, way more hardcore than that last Degrassi - which makes me wonder, is it that the show is trying to be over the edge, or have kids gotten to be this fucked up? Now I'm a late bloomer in some respects. I didn't drink (get drunk) until I was 18. It's not that I wasn't "cool" in high school, it's just that the kids who drank in high school were fucking lame and I had better things to do then spend my weekends getting blasted in Wellington, Gardens, or even worse - Boca Raton. Fuck I hate Boca. That's another story. One time I was over at Bryan's with Khansella and we were watching this HBO special on middle school titled "Middle School Confessions". If you have never had the chance to see this, then you are missing out in life. It is one of the funniest, and yet shocking, documentaries ever made. In the confessions made in this are true, then there truly is no hope for the future. There is an insane amount of "sex parties", Abercrombie wearing, and drug abusing kids out there.

Whenever I end up at the mall, i'm always shocked by what I see. Wannabe thugs with baseball hats to the side of their heads; girls who's parents did not see them leave the house - it's really sad. It's sad because i've become old and complain about shit like this - but even more sad that the parents of these kids (who are probably my age or just about) haven't learned a damn thing. If I went out dressed like some of these "bad asses", my dad would have slapped me across the head. Well, that's not true - he would never do that, because we knew to never act or dress like that. To do that would be to disprect ourselves and our parents - and there's a little something called family honour out there.

Wow, i'm freaking old. I'm right - but i'm old. Maybe i'm just mature. Mature. Oh. Sexy.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Either you tell us

Let me serious for a moment. Seriously. Down in the middle of North America, there's a big (according to CNN and hoopla about President Bush using warrent-less wiretaps to prevent terrorist attacks. I'm not a fan of the man myself, but he really is in between a rock and a hard place. If he didn't use the wiretaps and there was an attack - everyone would be all over him for letting Americans die. When he does use them, he's violating the constitution. In all fairness, the oath he took never mentioned protecting actual people - it was taken to defend and protect the constitution of the United States of America. The other problem is, this is nothing new - the federal government (and states if they're big enough) have always "bent" the rules in order to do something good. I've read many cliches attached to this story "the road to hell is paved with good intentions", "you're damned if you do, damned if you don't". At the end of the day, there's not much any of us can do - because if he is impeached, then Chenney is in - and well, if that's not scary I don't know what is. I'm sure he's a perfectly nice enough guy, but let's just say i'd stay away from the buffet if he was up there picking at the crab legs if you know what I mean.

I'm not sure I know what I mean. I was trying to coin a new phrase -

"I'd stay away from [insert name here] if he was at the buffet picking at the crab legs". Everyone, your mission is to use this in conversation today.

Here's another thing - I'm not going to see to West Palm for Christmas this year. I went down for Thanksgiving and two times in a month is just out of my budget. I didn't really feel bad about it until every single fucking person I know asked me if I was going down, and when I said I wasn't, asked if my parents will miss me. Now I feel horrible - I sent them both cards and presents and it's probably not enough and my spirits are dampened. This is the first Christmas I won't be with them - and Khansella will be in Mongolia - so i'm sure the ol' Kinsella estate will be a little empty. It was bound to happen eventually - and it's not like we won't go down next year - but I really need everyone to lay off the unintentional guilt trips. It's Christmas for crying out loud.

Ok - that's enough off my chest for now.

Here's some good news, the friendly folks at the LCBO wrote back to inform me that they hadn't stopped selling Singha, they just carry six packs instead of single bottles. I picked up three six packs, but i'll stop by tomorrow to clean them out before the holidays. I highly recommend that everyone try this beer.

Side note - we rented "The House of Wax" staring the guy from "One Tree Hill", the girl who gets chased on "24", and Paris Hilton. It's actually a really good movie and Paris Hilton is not a complete black hole in the film - it's good to see that you can be handed everything in life and still succeed.

Keep on trucking.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Huge Crossover Potential

We all know that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. For every Christmas party, there is an equal and opposite day of regret. The first big party of the season was Friday night at the newly renovated Delta hotel in downtown Kitchener. Partner in crime Moloquin has a great entry about it, and he makes some good points about how to behave at an event like that.

He also made a good point about anonymitity when blogging. I'm the worst for it since I put my photo and name on the site. I've regretted it a few times, but honestly - nothing I write is embarassing to anyone (more or less), and I never write anything about work (which is, seriously, a fantastic place to work). So, to be proper - I won't go into any details at all. I know, I know - how lame. How could I go tell any story, because they would all require some detail. I'll say this - dinner was beef tips, chicken, and salmon - plus an amazing selection of desserts. See, I told you - no details. How bout photos - everyone likes photos.

On base - Khansella with a new post.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

I smoked the wrong end

There was a pretty big snow storm here today - everyone in the office was upset. Everyone but me, for I am insane. I was so excited to get home and shovel. Last weekend I bought a new shovel. It's blue and has a cool concave, ergonomic handle. Most people wouldn't get excited about shoveling or a new shovel - but as you know, i'm not most people. So I shoveled the side walk and drive way - each shovel full of snow bringing me closer to nirvana. The feeling, not the Seattle alternative band popular in the early 90's.

Funny story - I was reading this book by the amazing Chuck Klosterman, "Fargo Rock City". There's a chapter in it where he talks about Nirvana and how "Smells Like Teen Spirit" dropped around the same time that GNR's "Use Your Illusions" 1 & 2 came out. But when we look back, it seems like they are so far apart. As I get older, I keep on running into time gaps like this. I think I did something one year, and it was really a completely different point in my time line. Even worse than that is when I forget complete episodes.

Here's an example. A couple years ago I went to my friend Katie's wedding down in Alpharetta, GA. She married her, for lack of a better term, college sweetheart Chris. Chris is an awesome guy. We were all in university together, they were one year behind me. Katie and I went to high school together for three years too, so already there's too much history to keep track of. Anyways - Chris and I became friends before he and Katie met. They were both in the film school and when they did meet, they didn't like each other at all. This was all funny because a year or so later they're inseparable. In the time while they weren't friends - i'd have parties, and Chris - along with other people from the station (long story) - would come over to the townhouse I lived in and we'd party. Alcohol (and someone begging Katie for sex, but not Chris nor myself) was often involved, so memories fade.

Jump forward to Katie and Chris's wedding. The night before, we're all Chris's parent's house having some drinks and Chris mentions the time we found Elton Nakagawa passed out under the coffee table. Not only had I forgotten that had happened, but I had also forgotten who Elton even was. Now, Elton was a 250 pound or so Samoan guy - which is pretty hard to forget. It should even be more hard to forget since there was a giant Samoan under the coffee table. But there you go, I forgot. This happens more and more, which is kind of disconcerting. Before my brother left for Mongolia, I told him the best thing he could ever do for himself was to keep a journal. I didn't keep one when I lived in Moscow, and i've always regretted it. There are so many great memories from that time, but how many other great (or mediocre) ones have I missed? He's not keeping one of course. One day he'll have a kid, and he'll tell that kid to keep a journal. My future nephew won't of course. Time keeps on, keeping on.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

You really sure?

I smell torilla chips. I'm not sure where that is coming from. It's not here in the living room. I was thinking about tracking it down, but then if I found the source - and it was tortilla chips - then i'd need salsa too. That's just a lot of work, and I just got home from work. What did I do today? Well, I dropped off three post dated cheques to Matt at Bauer Loft's for my parent's loft. It's not my money, so it's ok. I bought some Christmas presents today - no peeking - and I wrapped them. It's a typical Wednesday. No poker this week at Moloquin's. I'm skipping out to spend the money and yet more Christmas presents.

I hope everyone sent a card to my brother - because if you didn't, it's too late now - but you're still in time for St. Patrick's Day (or Valentine's Day if your heart desires) - so get cracking.

Today I tried to not say "yes" or "no". What? That's correct - I tried my hardest. It's actually quite difficult. Where did I get that idea from? This link over at Wikipedia on Irish English. I'm Irish and when i'm intoxicated, I have a pretty good accent. Still - there are some coloquialisms and morphologies that I didn't learn growing up. There are a lot I do know - for example, "How are you?" is "Haw are yous?". Another example would be the constant use of "Yer Man" as a pronoun. I've even got Laurie using that now. But I digress, the hard one is not saying "yes" or "no". It comes from that in Irish, there isn't a yes or no - so you'd answer back with the verb. Example; "Is the light on?" - Answer: "It is."

Is this the end of this post? Sho' nuff.

New Chuck Klosterman commentary over at ESPN.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

My car is right there

It's Tuesday, i'm in love. Shouldn't that be Friday - probably only if I was in "The Cure". The only memory I have that involves "The Cure" is listening to one of their CD's while I rode around a golf course with an ad agency assistant on a golf course shoot. She drove a Honda Civic and went to the University of Miami. That's all I really remember - that and the golf course was built on a dump and the developers failed to tell any of the people who bought the high six figure homes there. Nice, really nice. Buyer beware.

I'm not sure where this going, or where it's really coming from. Or maybe I do. I was day dreaming about travelling yesterday. Sometimes I miss travelling every week - but then the reality of the situation comes back. There were times i'd be in a truck stop town with only a Subway and a McDonalds as the restaurants in town. I'd be there for two weeks and the highlight would be when i'd be back at the hotel in time to catch a new "South Park" episode on Comedy Central. Still, I always try to make the best of any situation - and it was great to see parts of America that most American's don't know exist. Plus, who can beat a 6-inch turkey sub and "Cartman"?

Then of course there'd be the trips where the hotel was a month old and had a Starbucks, Jamba Juice and random Asian fusion restaurant in the parking lot. The days would start early, and end early and the mall had some great stores. I'd take a day trip over the weekend to a national park and go for a hike. There'd be a boat to Victoria Island or a free lift ticket to Park City. I ran into Faiz at Timmy's today - and we were talking about his last gig. He had a good time, and he remembered what I told him a couple months ago - for every great trip - there are four ok ones. The thing you have to do is get the job done 110% perfect - and let everything else unfold as it will. You're not there for a vacation - but a little side trip never hurts.

Is this some metaphor for life? Maybe i'm saying (and saying the obvious) that once you get your ducks in the row, that you can then pursue that which makes you happy? Maybe i'm saying "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy"? Or maybe, i'm saying i'd like another glass of wine and some tacos. Who knows. How 'bout this - have a great day.

Also - Greg is going to Publix corporate tomorrow and i'm jealous. I love Publix.

Setting up shop

It's freaking freezing in here Mr. Bigglesworth. Take a look at that screen's -19 degrees. In U.S. temperature, that's below 32 - that's all I know. I've complete forgotten how to tell temperature in F. I have also forgotten how to spell F. I can spell Celsius. To be honest, it has taken me the better part of two years to switch to Celsius and the metric system. During all my years of schooling in Florida, I know we looked at metrics - but I can't remember a test or homework involving it. Everything was in imperial - except for liquor and soda. Want to hear the weirdest thing (even though I've mentioned it before) - liquor is in ounces here. 26'er, 40, and 60. That's a 750ml, a 1.14ml, and 1.75ml respectively. A fifth is called a Mickey. That gets me angry - it was one of two things I knew in metrics and now I have to use ounces. I'll get over it.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Tell me the first thing that pops in your head.

It's after 9pm on a Saturday night and I'm sitting upstairs trying to get my computer working. Not the one i'm typing on - that one works. The PC in question is the all powerful Dell Dimension 4100. I've had this thing for over five years now - it's been through a fire and a move to Canada. It's a beast - and sadly, it won't start up right. I've got the thing running in "safe mode" and i'm defragging the harddrive. I'm not even sure what the hell defragging does - I write programs, I don't actually build computers - so that kind of information escapes me sometimes.

What is important is that all of my downloaded music (legally from iTunes because i'm a goodie-goodie) is on this fucking thing. I should say that. All of my downloaded music is on the amazing Dell Dimension 4100 PC. Oh wonder of modern computing with your 833mhz Pentium III processor and 160 gigabyte serial ATA hard disk. You are the apitamy of beauty with your 15 inch LCD and 16x CD-R/RW drive. Hopefully unsolicited compliments will get this thing running. If I keep complimenting this thing, I might even get it's phone number. Other than that - I really don't have anything planned for the night. Tomorrow starts three weeks of no-stop partying, so I need to get my rest in and laundry done. We bought a Christmas tree today - it's a spunky little tree. It really stood out of the crowd, in the way a puppy with three legs does. Canadian Tire sells these funky lights that are LED instead of normal bulbs. They are advertised as saving on energy costs. The thing they should advertised for is causing seizures. If you shake them around, you feel like you're at a rave. I've never actually been to a rave, there's something about euro-trash techno and pacifiers that never really did it for me - but i'm sure these lights give the same effect. They don't cause you to make out with your brother - which is probably a good thing.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Thank you. Whatever.

Today is the 25th anniversary of when my family immigrated to America. Let's just say that it's not exactly celebrated. It's not that my family doesn't love America - hell, my mom was born in Philly. It's just there are other places they'd rather be. For instance, i'm in Ontario and my brother is Mongolia. To best sum up the feelings of the day, here is a poem written by my father -

"It was 25 years ago to-day
that the wife made me come to the USA
Now its time that I can get away
And leave the USA.

Next verse

Jesus I've become a poet and a metro-sexual.

Boris Ivanivich"

True story - we landed in New York five minutes after John Lennon was shot outside his apartment. My dad always said it was a sign and that we should have gotten back on the plane and headed back to Ireland. Maybe i'm painting us in a bad light? We're not un-American. In so many ways, we're more American than the regulars (born citizens). We live the American dream (and now Canadian dream) and never take it for granted. How more American can you be (as I sit in Waterloo drinking a vodka tonic)?

Side note - I think Micha Barton and Ryan should break up. They're just not honest with each other, even though Ryan admitted he had a lap dance and Micha Barton fell asleep with the surfer dude. Just a thought.

How long till a new LOST?

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Me thinks the lady doth protest too much

Last nigh me and Bardia hung out while the women folk went birthday drinking. He has these molds that make ice shot glasses - so everyone did a couple shots before heading out. We started out at Cyranos on King Street. Their menu is pretty standard steak house fare - nothing too interesting. We had a couple drinks and an order of crab cakes. Next we went to Hernando's Hideaway for margaritas and the El Sampler Grande - nothing like taquitos, flautas, and quesadillas to soak up the mix of tequila and vodka.

Speaking of vodka - next we went to Pravda Vodka Bar. They have over 50 different vodkas - i'm not sure even I could work my way through them all. I tried a Moskavkaya and this Wokka one which is a mix of vodka and saki. After that we grabbed a slice of pizza to soak up more alcohol and then headed to P.J. O'Brien's for a couple pints. The final destination for the night was the Bier Markt at the Esplanade. The Bier Markt has over 100 different beers from around the world, with almost 40 on tap. Of course they were out of Singha - which just proves that there's a conspiracy against me. I just wrote the LCBO to see if they've stopped selling it.

Anyways - the band playing at the Bier Markt was BB Divine. I can't really find anything on them on the internet - but if I could I would try to get them to play a gig somewhere here in Waterloo. They're a cover band of pop and Top 40 tunes - but they sound like a cross between No Doubt and Black Eyed Peas.