Thursday, January 27, 2011
Instead, I read a story that I had to read twice to make sure I was reading a real newspaper and not The Onion. Gil Meche, a pitcher for the Kansas City Royals, has been injured a lot lately and decided he'd rather retire from baseball than keep taking money for a job he isn't doing. He was supposed to be paid $12 million this year but it was likely he'd miss a lot of starts or just pitch in relief. So Meche said no thanks.
I'm always hearing people bitching about players who make tons of money but don't produce. The article mentions a few players who stopped playing one year but didn't officially retire until later, thus collecting millions of dollars for doing nothing. Or they get "paid to sit on the bench." The Yankees are famous for paying players who don't play tons of money (I'm talking to you, Carl Pavano). But not Gil Meche. He's already made millions of dollars for his family. He's already set for life. So he did the unheard of, and classy in my opinion, thing.
Baseball players a constantly being heckled as overpaid divas. But every once in awhile, a player who doesn't fit that image comes along. Thanks, Gil. Can I call you Gil? I hope writers and fans don't think you're a fool for what you decided to do. Maybe teams will start working a "Meche Clause" into contracts.
Yeah. And maybe the Mets will win the World Series.
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
I took this picture in the children's section of a Barnes and Noble in Paterson. Grown men taking pictures in the kids section of a bookstore...I may be on a list now.
So how are you celebrating? Did you even know about it? I've been getting a bunch of offers on Facebook to "like" special days. Who's making this stuff up? Penguin Day was a few days ago. It was "Talk Like A Grizzled Prospector" Day on the 24th. There are tons of these moronic "holidays" on this site. Some of them seem worthwhile. Most of them seem goofy. How does one go about getting a special day recognized? Can I just make one up and have it become real just because I say it is? Maybe I'll establish today as "What The Hell Is With All These Crazy Holidays" Day. Actually, I'll wait until tomorrow. It's too late in the day right now and I'd hate for people to miss out on a full day of celebrating.
Personally, I'm looking forward to the 31st. Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day.
Monday, January 24, 2011
By the way, if there's a wind chill factor to estimate how cold it feels, there should be some kind of factor for estimating how time feels. If it's 7 degrees and I'm standing on a bus platform for 25 minutes, it feels like I waited 40 minutes. Or something like that. I was never very good at math.
Saturday, January 22, 2011
Is there such a think as City Angst? What do you city dwellers angst about? The shoveling is done by doormen. Subways usually run. Do food deliveries take longer?
Anyway, we're expecting another storm next week. How much? What time? Will school be canceled? Will I have to cancel any meetings or appointments? Will I be stuck in the house all day? There goes sleeping for awhile...
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Monday, January 17, 2011
Remember back in college, when you had the little cube fridge in your dorm room? Some of those space-saving fridges had a built-in freezer. It only had enough space for a couple of frozen dinners, but that was before the frost started to build up. That stuff would slowly surround the whole freezer like a tumor, eventually cutting into the fridge space. So come winter break, you'd defrost it.
Not a big deal. Unplug it, tip it backwards a little so the melt doesn't flood your floor. Stick a towel in there to soak up some of the resulting water. If you were lucky, you could jab a scissor into the ice wall and a huge chunk would fly off of the slowly warming surface like some titanic-sized ship hitting an iceberg. Now THAT was awesome.
Frost-free refrigerator/freezers started appearing in 1962 and these things were for people living on the cheap. Afte I graduated, I swore I'd never deal with that again, just like I swore I'd never drink another Busch 16 oz "pounder" no matter how cheap it was.
Then there came the freezer I bought a few years ago. I just needed something to store extra frozen stuff. I keep it in the garage. I don't think I spent more than $300 for it. Why so cheap? Because it wasn't frost free. It didn't occur to me that they'd still have these things around in the 21st century. I mean, I'm supposed to have a jet pack by now. If they're still making non-frost free units, what hope do I have for jetting across the skies of New Jersey?
Anyway, all this is a long way of telling you that I finally defrosted the thing. Several inches of ice, plus the freezer bag of soup that had managed to become one with the ice and the shelf it was lying on told me that it was time. That, plus the offers I was getting from local museums to do some exploring in the ice led me to shut the thing off.
I threw some towels in there. I put a pot of hot water in there. I watched the entire Bears/Seahawks game and the first half of the Jets/Pats game. Six hours later, there was very little progress. So it was time to break out the heavy artillery: the warranty-voiding flat head screwdriver, the large putty knife, and the ice scraper from my car. I started getting some of those satisfying ice slabs I used to get in college but it was mostly shaved ice. I considered getting some food coloring and selling some snow cones but it's probably too early in the season.
By 9:00, I had the whole thing dried off and ready for reloading. And I'll check on it more frequently this time around. Sure, like I checked on the baking soda thing I found in the back of the freezer which I was supposed to replace in June of 2009.
Friday, January 14, 2011
I also went looking for a challah which, in Manhattan, should be a cinch. Another fail. You'd think a bakery called Hot n Crusty would have one. Sadly, this location had pizzas and salad. Just like every other deli in the city.
I miss the Zaro's in Port Authority. Jeez, one mouse and they shut the place down. Snobs.
Sunday, January 09, 2011
Thursday, January 06, 2011
Wednesday, January 05, 2011
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
THE MANUAL!!!!! (cue ominous music)
Monday, January 03, 2011
One way to make money on the streets of Manhattan is to stick your fingers in every pay phone coin return you see. Now, this is back in the days before cell phones made phone booths virtually obsolete. It's also back when saying "stick your fingers in every coin return" wasn't such a hilarious thing to say. But back in the day, you can be sure that every homeless person, and my grandfather, was searching for forgotten change in the coin returns of various pay phones in and around the New York City area. Personally, I always came up empty in my searches. It was such an easy thing to do and you barely had to stop walking when you did it.
I wish I had written this last week.
Obviously, some searcher of loose change overestimated how easy the search is. Or maybe he got angry at not finding anything in the return. Either way, this incident could have been avoided had I written this earlier. Then again, would someone who could do this to a phone booth have access to a computer? Probably not.
Saturday, January 01, 2011
- There are the e-mails from Gary Hart and Howard Dean back in '05 which reminded me of how pissed I was that Bush won in '04.
- The e-mails from Atkins in '06. I guess I was on a zero carb kick.
- A ton of e-mails from Rolling Stone, which made me remember how I thought I'd be more relevant by getting e-mails from a magazine like Rolling Stone.
- An e-mail from MGM on the day Basic Instinct 2 came out (3/31/06).
- My friend Laura sent me an e-mail last summer, reminding me of the time we met at Coney Island for the Nathan's Hot Dog eating contest. 2001, I think. It was the first time Kobayashi competed and the last time the average person could wander around and stand wherever they wanted (last year, over 40,000 spectators showed up).
- Lots of offers of dream dates and stripper movies.
- Sadly, a large number of job opportunities from monster.com and careerbuilder.com. I'm afraid to look at them.