Family Dining

July 1, 2009 at 11:42 am | Posted in Life | 2 Comments
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Encountered on my travels last night, this rather plain looking coffee table.

Table ClosedBut wait. There’s more.

Say that you’re, oh, I don’t know, sitting on your couch ordering a pizza through your TV. What do you do when said pizza arrives? Do you quit the television, that ever-present, ever-glowing, mind-numbing additional member of your family? Do you vacate the couch in favor of a dining room table, mayhaps to sup with your family and enjoy some evening conversation?

No, sir and madam, you need not.

What you can do, and really, why wouldn’t you, is raise your living room table to proper height and distance such that your television viewing experience may remain uninterrupted while you dine comfortably from your couch. But getting your coffee table to the proper height would be so difficult, you say.

I present you:

Table OpenDear reader, I swear that I am not being facetious here. This is the stated purpose of this table. To enable eating from the couch because, and I’m paraphrasing here, “who wants to get up from the TV just to eat dinner.”

I stood, marveling at this monstrosity, rubbing my temples in despair.

America. Please. I am begging you.

Stop. Just…..just stop it.

There is still time to turn this all around.

Anywhere but here

June 26, 2009 at 4:47 pm | Posted in Life, Music | Leave a comment
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It is late on a Friday evening, and here I sit in my office doing homework for a particularly dubious cost accounting class.

I sit, also, upon a bit of a metaphysical precipice.

There is a song playing in the background in my little gray room, reverberating off the stark walls amidst the outside patter of rain and the inside roar of the cleaning crew, and it goes like this:

Have you seen me lately?

I was out on the radio, starting to change, somewhere out in America

It’s raining

Could you tell me, one thing you remember about me?

Just one thing you remember about me?

I remember me

All the little things that make up a memory

She said, she loved to watch me sleep

And she said, it’s the breathing, it’s the breathing in and out and in,

Have you seen me lately?

I can name at least three significant events of my life during which this song has been playing, quite randomly. This song, rather maudlin, always plays for me at times just like this.

I’m not quite sure what that means.




The song remains the same

June 23, 2009 at 8:43 am | Posted in Life, Music | 1 Comment
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These have been gray days here in New England, a seemingly never-ending onslaught of rain, clouds, and temperate temperatures not entirely befitting the month of June.

It weakens the soul, it does.

I have chosen, amidst the bleakness, to focus on something I encountered a few weeks ago when I need encouragement. At the beginning of the month, I found myself, rather last minute, attending a Dave Matthews concert here in Hartford on a Friday night. It was rainy and muddy and crowded, brimming with an uneasy energy that you encounter at these outdoor shows that mark the beginning of the summer season.

And it was absolutely teeming with youth.Big Whiskey and the Groogrux King

The setlist began, old standards intertwined with songs from their latest CD, and I noticed something rather remarkable. While yes, the ants marched on as always and everybody sang along, these folks, these kids, were also singing along with all of the new songs.

Songs from the album that had come out three days ago.

My heart soared.

I remember these days. These days when a new album coming out was a big deal, an actual event in your life, and you and everyone you knew were consumed with getting it, playing it, and memorizing the lyrics to it. It played at the parties you went to, it rang out from small radios behind the counters of summer jobs, and the beat up cars of college compatriots blared it from their open windows as they drove by you on the street.

Before These Crowded StreetsI, obviously, not only recall these days, but do so with great fondness. For me, the album wasn’t about a Groogrux King but rather the precedence of Crowded Streets, but I suspect that the experience largely remains the same.

And this, for some reason, fills me with great happiness and hope. For in a time of unquestionable turmoil, crushing economic conditions, and immense uncertainty, young people are still memorizing the words of an album within three days of its release, if only to be able to stand in a field on a Friday night and sing it out loud with their friends.

It really does lift you up.

Timing is Everything

June 15, 2009 at 1:55 pm | Posted in Life | 1 Comment
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Until 24 hours ago, I would not have believed that a product like this, the world’s first “anti-stab kitchen knife,” was needed.

anti-stab-knife

I would have been wrong.

To the four people that read this blog and get this joke – I say we gift a set of these.

Green Hot

May 12, 2009 at 7:59 am | Posted in Life, News | Leave a comment
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I am not, I profess, green. I’m not that into recycling, or biking to work, or properly disposing of old televisions and computer monitors. My carbon footprint was once estimated by some eco-website to be equal to roughly eight people. I should say, in my defense, that the site factored air travel into the results, as if my decision to travel to Ft. Myers meant that they had to charter a 747 specifically for me, so I remain skeptical of my purported environmental shoe size.

Even so, I can recognize the effort that some people are putting forth, and for the most part their decision to be green doesn’t really impact my life so I’m ok with it.

For the most part.

Here, though, is a proposal I read this morning on an industry website on how to immediately and effectively cut US energy usage by 12%.

Do Away with Air Conditioning

Facts about air conditioning:

It perhaps accounts for 12% of U.S. electricity use. You hear about “building energy use” being a big contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. Here’s a way to strike directly at a big contributor and lop it off!

People can live without it. The human race has gotten by without A/C for 99.9% of its presence on Planet Earth. Heck, 5,000 years ago, only the Pharaoh had fans.

People DO live without A/C, right now, on this planet. Large masses of people, billions. Many live in some very hot places.

I swear to god, if you so much as move my central A/C a single degree, just one single degree, above 68 in the summertime, I will foment a revolution.

I will take you down.

Well, the windshield was broken but I love the fresh air y’know
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