Friday, November 30, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 30th

Why is it that when Sarah McLachlan sings, she sounds like she's gasping for air?   Writhing in pain.  I can see that Taylor Swift adopts this technique.  Every line Taylor Swift sings quits as the end.  "Oh I had a lovely tiiiiiiiimmmmeeee ahhhh"

OH BABY WOOOEE!   SEC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME this Saturday, meaning tomorrow.  I had the privilege of going to a game with Alabama in it.  Some friends of mine and I went many years ago to see them at the Rose Bowl vs UCLA in the home opener when 'Bama was the Preseason #1.   Naturally there were some Bama fans in the crowd and we kibitzed with them all afternoon.  They're very good natured folk, Bama fans.   Pretty cool dudes, and yes, they're VERY fired up about their Crimson Tide.  UCLA won the game 35-24.

I claimed I would stop making NFL picks, but I was interested to see what would happen with all the Home Underdogs this weekend.  There are a bunch of them: Rams +7 (vs SF), Chiefs +3 (vs Carolina), Dolphins +7 (vs NE), Titans +6 (vs HOU), Chargers +1.5 (vs CIN), and Redskins +2.5 (vs NYG).  Six home dogs this week!  That seems like a lot.  Will most of them cover?

I gotta hurry up and finish writing this so that everyone gets a chance to read it before 1pm East... big things happen at 1pm East.  Especially in New York, if you know what I mean.

Rain all day, in Los Angeles.   It has rained since Wednesday night.  I haven't seen this much consistent rain all year, but in all honesty I like it a lot.  It makes things tougher to do... swimming (outside), driving, walking, shopping for presents, unless you have a garage at home.   Nonetheless, I'm glad to have the rain.

I also got a free Papa John's pizza. I had no idea something so silly as Papa John's could be so polarizing among my friends.  You have a group of friends who think the pizza is awful.  I'm not going to go on here and say its fantastic, but it's certainly not the nadir of cooked pizza.   Then there's the group of friends who find Papa John (the owner) a reprehensible scumbag.   To be fair, these friends are probably right, but in all honesty, many CEO's and owners are scumbags at their core.  It's a tough spot.

I think one day I'm going to not bother answering work emails and see if I get away with it.   Fingers crossed!

So glad this weekend is here.  I'm going to try a Persian Cuisine place called Javan's just down the street from my apartment.  They do a terrific job with Kebab's they say.  Seeing that it would normally be Kings hockey season, I'll be thinking of that great playoff run they had when I eat.  I ate Kebabs before every Kings playoff game this year, it felt like.

On the subject of the Kings.  Rest In Peace, David Courtney.  P.A. Announcer for the Kings, Angels, and Clippers.  An unforgettable voice and a gentleman to all.   My condolences to the Courtney Family and the Kings.

That's all for now.  Catch you all next week.

Dave's LOCKS of the Week: NCAA Week 14

Here it is, my friends, the final

Dave's (blam!)
LOCKS (gobble)
of the Week (splash)

of the year.

It's been a good run, and right up until the last two weeks (0-8!  oi) we had a pretty good season.   To close us out, we'll go into conference championship weekend.  I'll denote that I will potentially do NFL Playoff Picks in January, plus bowl game selections as we come up on them.  As for our regular feature, this is farewell, so BANG, let's go:

We start in Palo Alto, CA for the Pac 12 Championship Game.   What the hell?  I like Stanford -8.5.  You know what?   UCLA had its chances but I think they're finally going to get served.   They probably gave up last week's game thinking they'd benefit by getting "the easier matchup," but be careful what you wish for, Bruins.   Stanford will continue its physical attach and manhandle Huntley, Franklin and company.  Cardinal to win BIG... Stanford -8.5.

Next we go to the big one, the SEC Championship game in Atlanta, GA.   I'll take the Georgia Bulldogs but still expect Bama to win.  This will be a close one throughout.   Yet, the coaching mismatch is enormous and when it comes to close games, I like Alabama's chances.  Georgia +7.

Next we check out Middle Tennessee State at Arkansas State.   For no reason whatsoever, other than my general trust in Middle Tennessee St. all season, I want to go Middle Tennessee St. +10.  Book it.

Lastly we travel to the Big Ten Championship game where Nebraska faces Wisconsin.  Nebraska hasn't won many big matchups all year why would they change now?   With Wisconsin GETTING 3 points, the Badgers are an easy play.  Wisconsin +3.

That does it for the season!  It's been fun, but trying at times, but overall rewarding.  Enjoy Conference Championship weekend! 

Recap: Stanford -8.5, Georgia +7, Middle Tennessee St. +10, Wisconsin +3

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Dave's 2012 NFL Playoff Predictions (sorta)

By goofing around with ESPN's wonderful "2012 NFL Playoff Machine" I made predictions for every single game in every single week starting now and going through Week 17.  Here are the playoff brackets!

[Click on the image above to view the brackets in larger size.]


1. Houston (15-1)
2. Baltimore (13-3)

6. Indianapolis (10-6) vs. 3. Denver (12-4)
5. Pittsburgh (11-5) vs. 4. New England (11-5)


1. San Francisco (13-2-1)
2. Chicago (13-3)

6. New Orleans (10-6) vs. 3. Atlanta (12-4)
5. Green Bay (11-5) vs. 4. New York Giants (10-6)

This won't be even close to what happens, but it'll be fun to follow.  I got a little biased picking the Saints and Colts to win virtually every game.   This playoff bracket will be interesting once we see the actual results.  Enjoy.

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 29th

Over the years, I've come to find December my best month.  I think it's because almost everything winds down by then.  Once we hit the Holiday Season, it's as if the whole world takes a break, at least here at UCLA.  I love it!

The "break" really is a big boost and I cherish it every year.  I also love when I get to spend extended time with my wonderful family... my parents and sisters, and then my aunts and uncles.  Yes, I'm spending time with them all year but at Christmas-time we're all in the same place at once.  Good times.

The National Media has put such a big beating on the Lakers this week.  It's humorous.  I mean it is SO early and the Lakers aren't even at full strength... no question, this team has a lot of holes, but it is not *as* bad as the "experts" make it out to be.  In fact, I'm gonna call it right here: the Lakers are beating Denver on Friday.   That's right, they're going to win, and they're going to win by at least ten points.

Christmas shopping, oh baby I am way behind.   I have about 3 weeks to go and  roughly 15 presents to shop for.  It won't be easy, my friends.

That reminds me: I got my Dad a DVD set on three occasions and all three of them are still sitting in his house in shrinkwrap.  I mean are you serious?  Haha, my goodness I should consider getting him something he'll use, like a gift card.   That's what I intend to do.

In the history of time, the only DVD I ever got my Dad that he used was the film "My Cousin Vinny." That's easily his favorite comedy film.   I've never seen him laugh so hard at anything!

I was reading up on music and I read that the Beatles recorded their entire first album "Please Please Me" in one shot.   It was as if they were doing a live set and they recorded ten songs in one day over nine hours.  Four other songs were on two singles that were already released.  Can you even imagine that?   The Beatles of 1968 would never have stood for that either.

49ers Coach Jim Harbaugh chose Colin Kaepernick over Alex Smith for this week's game and most likely for the forseeable future.   I can't say enough about how great a choice this is.  So many coaches would be too scared for their job security and for Smith's feelings to make this choice.   You know that Wade Philips would have bumbled this decision and I would even say many other coaches would have made the safe choice and picked Alex Smith.    Harbaugh, on the other hand, doesn't play to convention or politics.  He plays to WIN.   My hope is that the Niners are richly rewarded for this heady decision.  To me, it makes sense!

I've been watching Kapernick even going back to the Jets game where he had one or two snaps.  This kid has a great arm, AND he can work well outside the pocket.  Kaep has tremendous upside.  I wish him well.

I *love* that there's a Billy Joel category on SongPop.   Every single song in the category is a Billy Joel song!   Having listened to, and owning, all of his studio albums but one (The Bridge), once I get an idea which passages are used, I feel really confident about beating everyone when I play the Billy Joel Songpop playlist.

Billy Joel is probably the only artist where I have almost every studio album he ever did, most of them on Vinyl, even Cold Spring Harbor (original issue), although I have that just as a novelty... it's not terribly listenable sound quality.

Souplantation tonight... which means two trips to souplantation in a week.  Very rare, my friends.

Cannot wait for the SEC Championship game.  I'll talk about it more tomorrow but the more I think about it, the more I see Georgia with a shot to win.    Aaron Murray is a fool but if he somehow keeps his head on straight, he's got a great arm and could give 'Bama some real problems.   I think it will at least be a close game.  

The most surprising part of all is that the SEC Title game doesn't start at 8pm Eastern.  I'd have thought that the SEC and/or CBS would have lobbied for that privilege by now but apparently not.

In any case, it's going to be sweet!   That's all for now.  Catch you on the flip side.  Season's Greetings!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 28th

Day four of the flu... I'm sensing some signs of a relapse, but it's still very mild.  I feel very bloated.  It is high time I swam again... and I'm at that convergence point on the line graph between "resting to beat the flu" and "exercising to stay in shape."

It's really weird... I was already on a 1.5 week break from swimming as it was... I'm not very happy about this.   Between my general laziness and illness I have been keeping myself from swimming for a while now.   I have to pick this up, my friends.

People who swim for the Olympics, they swim no matter how sick they are.  I would love to have that work ethic.  Onward.

Anyone realize it's November?   "Oh the Knicks are great!  Oh now they're not great!  The Lakers are going down in flames!  They can't even beat Indiana at home!!?  Oh the Clippers are way better than the Lakers!  Oh... they just lost four in a row including one to the Hornets."  It's.... NOVEMBER!!

I know I've had my own share of jumping the gun but even I can't get this riled up over a single month of NBA Basketball.

Remember when Auburn won the National Championship?  Feels like decades ago now.

Nate Robinson can't dunk over a chair on YouTube.

A reliever singlehandedly takes your team right out of a playoff series in October, so what do you do?  Sign him to a 3 year extension!   Good one, Cincinnati.  (link: )

I started up with peanut butter sandwiches again.  Ah, I have forgotten the gooey goodness.   Good times on two slices of bread.

Anyone hear the one about the kid from "Two and a Half Men" denouncing his own show as "filth?"  I could have told you that!!  I could have told you the show was garbage years ago!  Perhaps, though, I'd tell you this for different reasons than the kid did.   I just don't think the show is that funny.  Iono.

Indiana is still #1 in College Basketball.   I should mention, however, it's still NOVEMBER!!

That's all for the moment.  It won't be November for much longer.  Take care for now.

Addendum:  You know what?   Maybe Nate could dunk over a chair...  just barely.  Dave OUT!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 27th

Hello friends...

My swimming has taken a dive lately, no pun intended.    First it was the short week, and now it's my flu.  It's a lesser flu but I can sense that I'll get wiped out if I attempt any strenuous activity.  Going up the stairs this morning, I could feel some of that fever working its way back but then once I slow down I'm fine.

I'd like to get back to it though... I know I'll gain many pounds if I stop.   Sad situation really.

Think about this though... what would I have to eat in order to maintain my current body mass without exercise?   It'd have to be maybe 3/4 or 2/3 as much as I have now.   Very lame.

All right, so there's this goofball out there who's trying to imitate me without even knowing it, and he has his own blog, and youtubes no less!  The man lives in Austin, TX, and I gotta tell you, his blog is a hoot!

Check it out!   His ideas are brilliant... try to go to various places and make an outrageous request and expect a rejection.  Sometimes they hook him up.  It's a great read, and I highly recommend it.   I want to thank my buddy "Ottis" for recommending it as well.

I'm just going to go out there and say it right now:  Colin Kaepernick is the next 49ers Quarterback.   They *might* go with Alex Smith this week but he's going to get burned sooner or later.  All Kaepernick does is keep his team in the game and make good plays here and there.  He's not great... he's not Aaron Rodgers, but he's a terrific fit and he has a better arm too.  Now I tried to give him a few more games, but he's just been too good.  I'll give him one more and if he does well I think it's official.

Why is it that the best albums have 92 different versions of it on CD or LP?   Anyone ever see the number of different releases and remasters for "Pet Sounds" from the Beach Boys.  I counted about a dozen, or roughly the same number of tracks that were on the original record.  They even had a version of it that was an add on to another LP the Beach Boys released in the seventies.  Yet, I'm told that's the best sounding copy.   It's so weird.

I've had a HUGE hankering for a porterhouse steak, in the style of the old Peter Luger's steakhouse in Brooklyn.  Funny thing?  I currently have a wad of cash that could buy one at Peter Lugers.   Instead, however, I'll not attempt a flight to Brooklyn and just go after a local steakhouse that serves steak LIKE Peter Luger's.  In fact there's a Wolfgang's Steakhouse in Beverly Hills.  Now would I attempt to eat a "Steak for 2" by myself?  Stranger things have happened, my friends!

That's all for the moment.  I still need to get that little christmas tree for the apartment.  Stay tuned!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 26th

Good to be back... welcome back to our blog experience.

Thanksgiving was tremendous this year.  In fact, it was the best Thanksgiving I can remember for a long while.   We had a great turkey in the family this year.  I'm telling you, this was the best Thanksgiving Turkey I ever ate.   The skin was so crispy, the meat was tender and flavorful, maybe a little too salty, but no matter.  Everything WORKED.  The stuffing, which might have been stove top, was tremendous.  The cranberries in sauce, which my mom provided, were phenomenal.  The mashed potatoes, exemplary.  The gravy, complimentary.  The rest of the weekend was eventful as well.  Some shopping was involved, and a little Monopoly as well.

I made a huge comeback in the game of Monopoly on my sister.  I was down to just a couple hundred dollars with all of my properties mortgaged, including all three of the orange ones that I owned.   I thought it was over: my sister had hotels on Boardwalk and Park Place.  One more trip to either place and the game was over.   Instead, I not only survived that trip but then landed on Free Parking (we put our fine and tax money into Free Parking).   THEN I took the Free Parking money and unmortgaged  all the orange spaces and built up all the houses/hotels I could.   I needed a ton of money for that but I went ALL IN... it's like going all in in Poker.   I knew that I was going to lose anyway if I landed on Boardwalk.  Then, miracle of miracles, I not only avoided "Luxury Row" again, but my sis hit one of the orange properties.  Suddenly, I had a lot of real cash!   I finished up building the hotels on all remaining orange properties.  A few trips around the board later, and she had to mortgage everything.   Even the hotels, even Boardwalk itself.   Somewhere in between I negotiated a trade to give her something like Illinois Avenue for Marvin Gardens so that I could build up the yellow ones as well.   Then it was on... a few rounds later, I won the game.  COULD NOT BELIEVE IT.

So Notre Dame is undefeated.   I have nothing further to add to this.   They did everything they could possibly be asked to do.  They didn't lose a game, they beat all the teams they needed to, and they played a tough schedule.  There really is nothing else for them to prove.    I wish them luck on the way to the National Championship Game.  Maybe they could beat Alabama.  I certainly don't think so, but perhaps Notre Dame struck at just the right time.  Defense, to me, is always the difference between BCS winning teams and the field.  If it wasn't, wouldn't Oregon have a few National Championships by now?

I'm a little under the weather, but it's not nearly that serious this time out.  Ibuprofen is simply the greatest.

I'm getting tired of people who expect to perform miracles on data.  If you busted up your external hard drive, it's gone.  FINITO.  End of story.  Fortunately I made it pretty clear that I cannot claim any responsibility on damaged or lost data.    Those disclaimers are important because you can't levy any weight of expectation onto an impossible situation.  

Portable/External data sources wind up being far less reliable than anything installed inside a desktop.  I think a good reason for that is the simple size of the disks involved.  A 2.5 inch hard disk is just asking to fail with the unbelievable amount of density between data bytes.  AND it moves.   A full 3.5" hard disk installed within a well ventilated PC could last for years, even decades.  

That's all for now... not much time for more, but I hope everyone had a good weekend.  Back tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 21st

Where does all the time go?

It seemed like it was just a few weeks ago we ushered in 2012.  Now we're about to usher it out.

The last two months of the year are my favorite time of the year.  I'm honestly very worried that we may not see 2013.   Some Mayan Prophecy... Yes, I'm a moron who believes it.  

I heard the news about the Gaza Strip in Israel and started to really worry.   I can only imagine what people felt like in the 80's with constant threats of Nuclear War.   These recent developments seem to suggest a similar outcome if it goes awry.  

I started spending much more than usual this year in anticipation of a possible end of world scenario.  I didn't want to leave it to chance... I did more than I usually did.  I traveled to NYC, Vegas, and SF without really worrying about the financial implications.   The prospect of Armageddon made me really think about not putting things off: so I didn't.  As they say, you only live once.

Ever hear the adage that the scent of something sticks with your memory more than anything else?   You ever come into contact with a girl?  Like, a really pretty girl.   It's hard to not mistake her wonderful smell.   I live for these moments.

I know, I'm supposed to write about Pilgrims and ships and giant horns made of twigs and things, but it's not for me.  I've done it in other years, but this year, I'm just ready to eat.  Turkey time, and all the fixings.

I considered a different strategy this year as opposed to past years:  Instead of eating the dozen other entrees my Mom and Grandma make, I'd like to focus strictly on the basics.  I would go Turkey, Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, Gravy, and salad.   No other items... no crab, or jambalaya, or chicken thighs, or chili.  Just turkey and sides.   Makes me wonder how much of the turkey I could actually eat! I look forward to it.

By the way, I've always been intrigued at restaurants that serve turkey dinners.  Would they do a better job with the turkey than my Grandparents do?  Usually it's my Grandparents who cook the turkey, and they do a tremendous job of it too.   It does seem like some restaurants do the Turkey dinner but they are very expensive.  With all of the side dishes involved, I can understand that.   I'm eager to see if any of my friends have tried it.

One other thing I want to do lately is go to a food shelter and feed the homeless around this time of year.  My Dad does this almost every week and I'm so proud of him.   On the flip side, it makes me feel like a douche for carousing with football games and vegas trips while he gets other friends and family together to help his community.  

Here's something extremely difficult: Anniversary presents.   My parents have their wedding anniversary coming up, and I believe it's on Friday during the Thanksgiving Weekend.  Anyway, how do you get a present for two people who don't like the same things?   You have to get one present that your Mom and your Dad will like equally.  Now that's hard.

Turkey Football tomorrow... I gotta tell ya, I'm not into it!  The Redskins/Cowboys games are so overrated.  I know, all of them are close, but they're usually not well played games.  Turnovers abound, lousy work in the Red Zone, it's not good football.   I'm not prepared to see the Cowboys play a good complete game at home.  They haven't done this in the entire four seasons they've been at Cowboy Stadium.  The Cowboys have been AWFUL in their new stadium.   Pats/Jets should be interesting though.

That's all I have for now.  Gobble countdown is down to ONE DAY.  I'm excited everyone.  Enjoy your Thanksgiving!

Dave's LOCKS of the Week: NCAA Week 13

I will never live down the 0-4 week last week, and I'm a beaten man.  Yet, I'm here to round out the season on...

Dave's (blam!)
LOCKS (booooom)
of the Week (banng!)

Four games: all in College Football.

You'd think I'd learn but NO!  After spending most of the year picking against USC against the spread I'm going to the well *again*, knowing that I got burned badly by that sleaze Lane Kiffin and his idiot players.   Nevertheless, we'll take SC with backup QB Max Wittek to cover +7 against Notre Dame.  I don't think they'll win, but it will be much closer than people expect.  USC +7

Next, to the Rose Bowl where I like the Bruins to finish off the regular season with a bang.  Stanford will be badly worn out from that big win at Oregon.  It takes a LOT to beat the #1 team in the nation on their home field and I would not be surprised if this is a Bruin blowout.   Some might say: Congratulations, UCLA, you got VIDMUSHED!   I'm not so sure.   UCLA -1.5

Even though Oregon will want to fire back with a vengeance, they're at Corvallis, OR for the annual Civil War Game against Oregon State.  Let me tell you, way back in September I was ready to take the Beavers with the points.  I was THAT sure of a good game from Oregon State.  Thankfully, Oregon State is getting 9.5 points at home!  I wish that would go up, but for now, I think it's a comfortably point spread.   The Beavers will make it very interesting against the former No. 1 Oregon Ducks.   Oregon State +9.5

Lastly, I like Louisville to put away UConn.  Louisville -12

To Recap: USC +7, UCLA -1.5, Oregon State +9.5, Louisville -12.  Gobble up!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 20th

Gobble countdown is down to TWO days.  Two days, everyone 'til Thanksgiving.    Who cannot wait for the big meals in store?  I look forward to it.

Colin Kapernick did a remarkable job last night for the 49ers.   I think I want to give him one more start before I decide whether he's a long term solution.  It's too bad his next start would be against the Saints on the road.  That's almost an impossible place to win.   If Alex Smith is deemed healthy I would guess he gets the start anyway.

I got my first look at TWC Sportsnet last night.  This is terrific!   I have always wondered what a channel entirely devoted to the Lakers would be like.  No Angels games to get in the way.  No rushed postgame shows from a makeshift desk next to the Jerry West statue at Staples Center.  No more of that useless Norm Nixon failing to analyze plays.  The only issue at the moment is that the programming is pretty repetitive.   Lakers Access, Classic Lakers, Lakers Replay, Lakers Access again...  

I don't worry so much about that: every program takes a while to build an archive of material in the very beginning.  The first years of NFL Network featured a lot of old NFL Films highlight shows, and by old I mean VERY old, like from the mid-to-late 60's.  I rather enjoyed it, but it was just filler for a very new channel.  The first years of most HD channels had programming on about a 3 hour block, which just repeated or alternated with one other 3 hour block ad nauseum.  Over time, TWC Sportsnet will have more comprehensive programming.  I love the dedication to Lakers coverage, and even better, I get to see my boy Coach Dave Miller at the studio desk again!

Who is Dave Miller?  He used to coach the Hornets in some capacity.  Then, years later, he came over to Los Angeles to do postgame and pregame shows for the Lakers on radio.  Now he's on TV.  He's had a good post-coaching career and he seems to bleed Lakers, even though I don't remember him having any connections to the team in the past.

Then you look over at Fox Sports Net and Prime Ticket.    You can bet the Clippers, Kings, and Dodgers are *begging* to go to their own channels.  Kings would be pretty good to be a complimentary team to the Lakers on TWC Sportsnet, and I bet that's where they will go when their contract with FSN expires.   The Kings can take their time: the more time this channel spends on the Lakers, the better it will be.   If all goes well I'll be watching TWC Sportsnet every night.

I do miss hockey.   The last time the NHL had a lockout, and teams came back it was never the same.   You'd see all the same players and all the same teams but it just felt different.   I'm afraid the same thing happens this year.   Hockey is never going to learn... they were picking up momentum with its fans, and slowly building popularity again.  Now, it's as good as badminton in terms of popularity.    Way to go, Bettman.  Way to go, NHLPA.

I just find it amusing that Donald Fehr has a hand in the NHLPA during this lockout.  He's the man responsible for the bloated salaries in MLB today.   Now he's in the NHL trying to milk all the money he can for the players.   One problem, Donald:  WHERE IS THIS MONEY COMING FROM?   You can't milk money from a league that doesn't have that much money to begin with.   NHL Revenues from 2011 were 3.3 billion dollars.  That's a full 1 billion less than the NBA's 4.3 billion, and less than 50% of MLB's 7 billion.  The NHL gets easily the worst TV ratings of any professional sport.  They have ratings bad enough to be comparable to MLS Soccer.  It's a joke.   Yet, the NHL thinks they can operate like the NFL and hope all its fans start pouring back.

Some of them will, but many of them will take longer to return to following the sport.  NHL Strikes out again.

A Kings fan, like myself, could be furious about this lockout.   To waste not only a whole year of all the players' lives and kill any momentum for a title repeat, THEN take away the fans' chance to see the Kings put up their championship banner is a very bitter pill to swallow.   It would be impossible for any team to repeat after a full calendar year in between seasons.  It's just awful.

How long does pasta keep?   I've had a batch of pasta that I cooked on Thursday, I believe, and it's in the fridge now.   Think it's all right to eat?  I think we're going to find out tonight!

We do have one more Dave in the City Podcast tonight at 10 East, 7 Pacific.  Mike in North NJ joins us to break down the upcoming Notre Dame/USC game.  Should be a good time.  In hour 2, Kevin on the Cape helps us usher in Thanksgiving.

I've got to get an anniversary present for my parents.  Their anniversary is on Thanksgiving Weekend.  Odd isn't it?  I don't know how they arrived at that date but it makes a busy weekend even busier for them.  It should be great though!

Is Turkey an overrated meat?   It's easy to turn that thing dry in cooking.   It takes forever to cook.   The end result can be hit or miss.   I do like it though, so I can't decide.

Imagine this!   A turkey rotisserie restaurant in the style of California Chicken Cafe or any other rotisserie chicken place.   It'd cost way more but I'm intrigued.   Or, if not that, how about a Fried Turkey restaurant?  You *can* fry them.   There are these huge peanut oil turkey fryer pots they sell.  Put in the Turkey, let it sit for a few minutes and bazinga, perfectly cooked turkey with a delicious crust.

There's a Dunkin Donuts in Las Vegas.   If there's a Dunkin Donuts in Las Vegas, why in the world is there no Dunkin Donuts in California?  Vegas is practically next to California!  This is outrageous, my friends.  Just outrageous.

That's all for the moment:  You know, I'm so thankful to have the freedom and the means to write this blog.   I'm thankful to have the people and good friends to support it.  I'm happy to have a great family to help me be the man I am today.   Thanks to you all.   Back tomorrow!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 19th

I'm out of it today.  Not feeling 100%, but I think I'll manage for the morning/afternoon.

Notre Dame is #1.  I would be lying if I said I was happy about it.   All they had to do was win their legit-tough schedule and THEN hope for all the other teams around them to give up a game.   It's like the guy who gets a lot of money via inheritance.   Now the guy himself did a great job staying alive and being a good enough guy to earn that award in the will, but it was basically an award anyway.

Now that the Irish are No. 1 and that the Trojans are a complete embarrassment to the Pac 12, all eyes look to the Coliseum.   I'll save the prediction for tonight's Dave podcast (11:30 ET on, but here's a few related things I think will happen:

  • Seems to me like SC and its fans don't have much left.   You can bet the stadium will be almost all Notre Dame... think of it like "South Bend West."
  • I don't think Barkley is going to play.  He looked finished with the concussion on Saturday
  • The Irish fanbase will double this weekend if the Irish win.   
  • If USC wins, I predict we will get not just one but TWO SEC teams in the National Championship game.  We were already on pace to have zero SEC teams in the game and then Saturday happened.  Oh da pain.
I had the weirdest dream of the year last night.   I was at a very fancy casino, a place like Wynn or something, and found a McDonalds inside the casino.  Then I went to McDonalds and ordered a McDouble, A McChicken Sandwich and fries, and the people taking orders were wearing tuxes and had fancy stuff on.  The dude who took the order looked like a butler.  He could not figure out how to set up that order at all... he was so confused.  Then there was this pitch to make the McChicken Sandwich a combo and eventually I gave in and did it but then he had no idea what to do about the drink.  It was a mess.   If that was reality, I would have probably gone on the Dave Blog and moaned about it, then adding "This is why fancy people don't work at McDonalds.  Leave the McDonalds orders to the regulars."

Nothing says "things to be thankful for" like a guy who drops a huge computer migration request on you during a short week up against the Thanksgiving holiday.   To be honest, I should have just postponed the entire operation for next week, so that's on me.

How are the Cowboys in playoff contention?   Oh goody, we get to see the Cowboys go to the playoffs and NOT WIN a game!   

Last night showed how important Ben Roethlisberger was to the Steelers.   However, with that said, it shows that the organization is getting *really* lazy with their roster moves.   Subtracting your starting quarterback is the easiest indication of how well an organization drafts or makes roster moves.   In the NFL, if you have a solid team, you manage to hold water with all the leftover guys if you lose your starting QB.  The Patriots in 2008 are a good example.  However, you also get situations like this one with the Steelers.  Without Big Ben, any other QB is toast because the team didn't spend time working on improving its o-line (it's gotten better but we're speaking about Ben's entire career), or getting good running backs.  It's not easy to do because Pit can't get upper level draft picks with their relative success, but sometimes there are diamonds in the rough.  Such are the Steelers this year.   I don't know when Big Ben returns but until then it will be a mighty struggle.  I'm actually pretty happy the Steelers kept it close against Baltimore.

Taxi Cabs are a huge sham.   I refuse to use them whenever possible.   Who else would charge 10 dollars to travel a mile?   What a joke.

Alabama is back in the BCS Championship game... hooray?

That's all for now.  Happy Monday everyone.  ...see what I did there?

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 16th

Happy Friday everyone.

But is it really happy, just because it's Friday?  Is it??

I always thought the song "She Bop" was about a sock hop but THEN I learned... yep you got it.

Guy Fieri (sp?) is getting his butt kicked by all the restaurant critics.  I'm not following this: was he ever a guy to be taken seriously with culinary arts?   I didn't think so.  People are barking up the wrong tree.

I'm happy to report that Time Warner Cable agreed with DIRECTV to offer them TWC Sportsnet.  At last!  The Lakers (on TWCSN) will now be on my TV Set on Satellite.  This is tremendous news, but also, long overdue.  In light of that, I don't know how much in the way of kudos I should give to either party.

DIRECTV is no saint either.  Nobody loves to pick long drawn out battles with TV channels like DIRECTV.  The worst one to date was when they let Viacom channels out to pasture for a good 2-3 weeks just to get their way.  I have not a clue whether this has any actual impact on the price of my bill.  It's expensive either way, so I don't see the point.

There may come a day when I cancel DIRECTV altogether.  If that day comes, it will also be the day I give up on sports completely.   I've always thought about it, but never considered it seriously.

This is an especially short entry.  Unfortunately nothing else comes to mind.  I will say that John in CT and Chris in Syracuse did an amazing job on the College B-Ball Preview podcast last night.  I was enthralled and mesmerized the entire evening.

NOW that shall be all.  G'nite everybody!

Dave's LOCKS of the Week: NCAA Week 12

Gobble Gobble, it's

Dave's (sizzle)
LOCKS (snap)
of the Week (crinkle)

As promised, we are all college football picks the rest of the season and we're tackling the toughies.  Here we go:

First, in Pasadena, I understand how big a game this is for UCLA and I fully expect them to have a chance to win, but I still will take USC in a rare selection of SC ATS for our blog.  Nonetheless, I like the Trojans -3.5 on the road.  USC -3.5

Next, call me nuts, but I've been big on Louisiana Tech all year, and I like them in this one even at home against a very tough Utah State Aggies. Louisiana Tech +3

On to the two big ones!  There are now three undefeated teams in the BCS Top Ranks, and I'm taking two of them.

First, we go to Baylor where I love, LOVE the K-State Wildcats as the favorite.  K-State +13

Next, out to Oregon where the point spread seems lofty but to me, I think it's quite attainable.  Stanford struggled mightily against spread offenses with Arizona as a recent example.  Oregon is the cornerstone spread offense, or, the pinnacle of offense with the multiple receiver formation.   It's a lofty point spread, but if anyone can handle it, Oregon can handle -20.5 against Stanford.  Oregon -20.5 at home.

To recap: USC -3.5, LA Tech +3, K-State -13, and Oregon -20.5.  Enjoy this big showdown weekend everyone!

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 15th

Busy day ahead, so all I have today are quickies.

How long can sandwich meat keep?  People have given me answers ranging from 3 days to two weeks.   I think it's closer to 3 days with the Boar's Head meat.   I had some amazing brisket that I purchased on Sunday but it is now Thursday and it's starting to go bad.  It's really such a shame... that meat is so good.  I threw all the remaining meat on the last sandwich which I have in my possession.  Do I chance it and eat the sandwich or just let it go?   I think I'm going to chance it.

Speaking of "close shaves" I sucked it up and cooked my usual Linguine with Marinara last night before the podcast.  It didn't give me much time to eat it, in between setting up the podcast and recording the promo for "Football Pick'em" but I pulled it off.  I was proud of that, honestly.  I saved about 4-5 bucks by doing that instead of just getting fried chicken.

I let the Linguine cook a little longer this time, so about 12 minutes instead of 9 in the boil and I loved it!   It probably was not Al Dente, but it was dentelicious!  --if that makes any sense.

Gobble countdown is at 7 days.  Amazing!  We are this close to my favorite of the Holidays.

This year I seem to care a little less about the NFL games next Thursday.  The bottom line is that the games just aren't that good.    I like Houston/Detroit all right, but then after that it's Redskins/Cowboys (again?  I'd rather watch curling), and Pats/Jets which used to be good but now is a total joke.  With that said, I feel like the best strategy is to ignore the Cowboy game and then just hold out for Pats/Jets at night.   I'd rather not suffocate the rest of the family with non-stop football on TV.

I used to think "Squeeze Box" was about an accordion but... you know the rest!

I kid!  I knew the whole time what the "Squeeze Box" was... Roger Daltrey ftw.

Survivor:  not nearly as hectic as last night but I'll tell you what, hopefully without spoiling anything: Abi showed her true colors.  NOBODY likes Abi.  End of story.   The only reason she's gone as far as she has to this point is because she's viewed as a non threat.  There is no way she's winning the contest.  Zero.  Unfortunately her presence is bringing down the show.  She sucks.   Can I just say that?  Abi sucks!   I hope one day Penner or even Blair, ahem sorry, Lisa schools Abi and takes her to the cleaners.  Enough!

What would CBS be willing to entertain to trade Abi to "The Big Bang Theory" for Sheldon Cooper? At least Sheldon is entertaining.

There is still a lot of debate on the usage of tater tots.  Are they a breakfast food or a lunch food?   You make the call!

The Beatles' new Vinyl Re-Releases are making a big splash in the music industry.   I had an idea, on that note.  What I thought of doing was purchasing one of the later albums in stereo so that I can get an idea what the look, feel, and sound, of these new editions are like.  My choice will be "The Beatles" aka the White Album.   I think that particular album will be close to 30 bucks, however, due to it being a double.

I believe that's all the time I have today.   Have a good Thursday!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 14th

MLB has to do something about Jeffrey Loria.   He is ruining the spirit of competition in baseball.  To trade away the ENTIRE TEAM... for the third time that I can remember, the first time being around 2004 after the World Series Title, and the second time being about 2007 when they traded Miguel Cabrera and possibly others.  I don't need to write out who they traded: they traded *every* available useful player on the roster except Ricky Nolasco!  (What a cruel joke, by the way, if they save Nolasco for a trade with the Dodgers.  I'm moving to Nebraska if that happens, oi)

Loria is a joke.  The Marlins are a joke, and they LITERALLY, **LITERALLY** hosed all of Miami out of millions of taxpayer dollars for that stadium.  To coerce its citizens, many of whom don't care about baseball, to pay out for this gaudy edifice, only to not deliver its end of the bargain and dump all it's big players after only a year is literally a crime to me.  IT IS A CRIME.   I don't want to drag down my podcast tonight talking about this, but I am upset.   Not only should MLB step in and take action, but I really think the Securities and Exchange commission should have a hand in it.  This is almost worse than insider trading.  It's as big a heist as "Ocean's Eleven."

It's honestly very hard to take MLB seriously right now.   It allows way too many of these scumbag money grubbing owners to survive and thrive.  Maybe baseball should never have expanded to these joke markets in the first place.   I barely see anyone go to Diamondbacks games.   The Tampa Bay Rays very existence is in question.   Miami didn't even hold onto much of its opening night buzz and wound up being a pretty empty stadium by the end of the season.  Incidentally, as far as the Blue Jays, who received all these Marlin players in the trade, what is the use of having the Blue Jays in MLB?

The Blue Jays are just good enough to be around .500 but never good enough to do anything else.  I am sick of people who keep moaning "if the Blue Jays were in another division they'd go to the playoffs easily."  Yeah?  How about they actually GO TO THE PLAYOFFS first?   The Orioles and Rays had no problem making the playoffs in the all-important AL East.   Maybe the Blue Jays just aren't that good, have we considered this hypothesis?

Well... not anymore, but they used to "not be that good."  Today, they look like a pretty good baseball team.  That really puts the Blue Jays out of excuses: they have no excuse to miss the playoffs in 2013.  Not only do they have their regular starters AND Josh Johnson, but I believe they still have Colby Rasmus, Miguel Bautista, AND Jose Reyes.  Wow!  The Blue Jays have zero excuse to miss the playoffs now.  Zero.

Look at this, five paragraphs on baseball.  I had no idea this was coming.

Last night, I had spicy pork ramen noodles and paid the price... it was 2am in the morning, and I had some "unfinished business."  Those were good noodles though; a shame it had to come to that.

Last night I also had the privilege of watching the new James Bond movie entitled "Skyfall."  That's a good movie, I recommend everyone to see it.

Word on the street is that Mike D'antoni is due to coach his first game on Friday.  I don't think it's worth squabbling about the hire much longer.  The point of all this is: this Lakers team is going to be fun.  Win or lose, this will be entertaining, possibly for the right reasons, and possibly for the wrong reasons, the Lakers will be exciting.   I'm not even worried about "championships" or "dignity" at this point.  I'd say just buckle up and enjoy the ride.  It could be a thrill ride!

An unusual circumstance has yielded one of the more fun ideas in theater concessions.  Most of the time when you go to the theater and share a popcorn you ask for a box so that you can use it for some of the popcorn.  The AMC near me was out of boxes!  Instead, they offered this really unusual bag that was designed to hold soft drinks.  However, they offered to pour extra popcorn in it for free.  Now how cool was that?  Then I got it, and it looked so funny.  Folks, I introduce to you....  POPCORN PANTS:

Now that is a hoot, isn't it?

One of the top four in College Football went down this weekend.  So I wonder, who's next?   I'm guessing Oregon is next, but who knows, everyone?  Who knows?  If Alabama can go down, pretty much anyone else could as well.  I do love this layer of suspense and danger in the BCS Top 3.  No one is safe!  Not even Kansas State.

That's all I have.   Time to jet for now.  I will catch you all tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 13th

We're about a week and two days away from Thanksgiving everyone!   Start the gobble countdown...

Geez louise, the NFL has had shoddier play than I've seen in a long time.  Last night's MNF game was a chore to watch.  When you're team is in a game like that, you just root for the win and stop worrying about the style points.  Last night, the Steelers did it, in overtime, thanks to a whole lot of help from the Chiefs.

The bigger issue is Big Ben.  He's hurt.  I can't say whether his shoulder is a 3rd degree or 2nd degree or even 1st degree separated shoulder, but any of those are bad.  The odds are extremely good that he'll miss next week's start against Baltimore.   If Leftwich is the starter, I'd be hard pressed to imagine the Steelers making the playoffs.

This is how I felt anyway, but the odds are that much worse without Roethlisberger.

Over the years I learned how to spell Ben "Roethlisberger's" last name.  This is a REALLY hard name to spell! R-o-E-t-h-l-I-s-b-E-r-g-e-r.  The E, I and other E are all pretty brutal to remember... some people use an "e" in place of the I by mistake.  Others do the "u" in place of the second "e".  It's a scene.

Anyone know how to reliably wash the wax off a Red Delicious apple?  That gunk stays on like glue, it's weird.

Yesterday I saw "Wreck-It Ralph" at the theater.  It was wonderful!   Great movie, and even better for those of us who played arcade games in our youth.  Even people who didn't play arcade games as kids but then played the same games later using emulators, they'd appreciate a lot of the references in the movie.

I'm still so sad about the loss of the Wendy's W Cheeseburger.   I'm not surprised though: it was a great small double cheeseburger with excellent ingredients like red onion and that "special sauce."  Yet, the whole thing cost only about 2 dollars.   Over the year or so that I ate it, I felt like Wendy's could easily have charged a dollar more for the W.   Now it's gone.   I lost my direction for what to eat at Wendy's: like a ship without an anchor, like slave without a chain, but I will go on shining go shining like brand new; I'll never look behind me, my troubles will be few.

There's no doubt, the Lakers are not run very well today.   No tact at all.   I'm hearing reports on ESPN that Jackson got blindsided with the news that D'antoni was the choice.  EVERYBODY is denying it, but it appears that Jim Buss' arrogance cost the Lakers Phil Jackson.   Now I think Jim Buss is a joke, but while that's true I will come to his defense here.  Phil Jackson is a loon with his demands, and this goes back to when he was last on the team.  Phil is always trying to control the rest of the Lakers as well, and I can at least say his basketball decisions are sound, but the man sounds like he wanted to own the team, and for a longtime entity like the Buss family, that idea doesn't sit well.

Even at that, sometimes you gotta lick your wounds and take one for the team.   Let's review... the Lakers whacked Mike Brown a mere five games into the season with NO PLAN?  That's not what the Lakers do.  It's what the Clippers do, it's what the Dodgers do, it might even be what UCLA does, but the LAKERS used to be above that.  Not anymore.

When I was a kid, I thought "Goodbye Stranger" was about friends bidding farewell.   As an adult, it's obvious, the song's about a one-night stand.

I want to write a sitcom pilot someday, as Jerry and George did on "Seinfeld."  I have the ideas and the characters and the story for it, but I don't have the formatting prowess of screenwriting.   Maybe, like the "Seinfeld" guys I can base it on the podcast and message board.  Semi-autobiographical, but with my character as just a foil.   The podcast is not really about me... it's about sports and it's about all the funky friends who contribute to it.   Perhaps a TV show in the same vein would be fun.

That's all for now.  Have a good one everyone.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 12th

Oh the New York Giants!  They are so dependably undependable.  I *knew* they would find a way to blow that game at Cincinnati.  Once I had them -3.5 I said it was just a matter of time.  KNEW it was too good to be true.   The good thing here is that LOCKS of the Week still went 2-1-1.  One more point for Oregon State and it's a spectacular effort for football picks.

First of all, I am through with choosing NFL games for LOCKS of the Week.  Through!   The point spreads are so tiny anyway, and to expect any of the 32 teams to deliver on a point spread, whether as a favorite or underdog is a sucker bet this year.  For the rest of this season, I will do college games exclusively.  

I'll put it this way... in what universe do the Giants have any excuse for tanking the game at Cincinnati?  They were a great road team this year, and the Bungles don't have a spectacular offense albeit they do have one impressive wide receiver.  The Giants were not coming off a big win, nay, instead they were coming off a bruising loss to Pittsburgh.  I don't get it.  I just don't get it.   Eli Manning was a complete joke.  Elite quarterback my rear.

In an interesting sidebar, there is the running meme that teams that play Pittsburgh get so beat up they lose the next week.  Of all the teams out there, I did not think it would happen to the Giants.   The Giants were presumably the ultimate contrarian.  Yet, here we are.

I took a trip to SC this weekend and it was spectacular.  Meeting Rebecca Soni and the USC Song Girls in the same hour, I mean it does not get any better... here are some highlights.

I still don't know how I came upon the entire Song Girls squad at once like that.  Yet, there they were, taking pictures with people here and there.  They weren't planning that, but apparently some people snuck over and just asked and they were kind enough to accept so I figured, on a strangers suggestion, to give it a shot.  Thankfully, they all were open to another photo-op.  That was a pure fluke.  I guess, as they say, Heritage Hall is the place to be!

All right, on to other thoughts...

Ever hear of the bacon wrapped hot dog here in Los Angeles?   It's a renegade food, served from carts that roam the streets, possibly without a permit.   The best way to find one is to not look for one.  Having said that, you're well off if you're at any sporting event in the area, as the carts will usually seek you out.  Still, if you go to a restaurant and attempt to order a bacon wrapped hot dog from a menu, it's not the same experience, and I would gauge it's not as good a hot dog.

The ingredients are pretty cheap, the construction unorthodox, but the result is simply awesome:

People were telling me I can bargain down the price from 5 dollars to 3 or so and I made a stab at this but they were not that willing to do it, were the vendors.  Somehow I fenagled down to 4 and I feel like a real douche now for doing this.  I mean COME ON, these poor chaps are just trying to make a hot dog and I have the audacity to negotiate the price?  Once I took a bite, I realized I was a complete jerk... that hot dog was worth at least 7 bones, maybe 8.  It was *amazing!*  At many concession stands inside a stadium they'd charge you about that much for a hot dog half as good.  The next time I go out to SC for one of these, and if I find the same lady I'm forking over 8 and letting her keep it.

Imagine you were to purchase from an unauthorized food vendor and cops were on the scene and busted up everybody?   Does the buyer get arrested too??  Who would get arrested for buying a hot dog?   

It's been a whirlwind, and that was just the beginning.  After the trip to SC, I took the train to LA Live and saw the score of the A&M/Alabama game.  I could not believe it!   Of all the teams, ALABAMA is the first to lose?  I was shocked.   Almost unnerved.   

As I saw A&M maintain their lead I went to a nearby sports bar called Yardhouse and ordered two Beligan Ales with 9% alcohol... all I'm gonna say is, after the games, I had to train it back and THEN spend a good 40 minutes inside an Arby's for detox.   That beer was no joke, fellas!

Can you believe Wendy's owns 18% of Arby's?  I'm still shocked at that.

I have a bad feeling about the Steelers tonight.  You can bet the Chiefs will take their first lead in regulation this season, and they'll do it during tonight's game.  I'm not feeling confident about the Steelers tonight.

That's all from here.  Have a good one, everyone.

D'antoni: Once you pop, you can't stop (on defense)...

We've got some catching up to do!

Since the last blog post, the Lakers went and hired, what I think is a bonehead move, Mike D'antoni.  He is not the worst coach in the world, but he is far and away a bad choice, long term and short term.  I still can't get over how badly D'antoni was schooled over the years by the likes of Popovich and even Phil Jackson, the Lakers' other choice.  

What is the point of this?  This was worth canning Mike Brown after five games?  I am not following it at all.   If it's going to come to this, the Lakers may as well have kept Bernie Bickerstaff.   Brown's deficiencies coaching offense were equally big deficiencies for Mike D'antoni's defenses.

I am not at a point where I wonder if Jerry Buss is running the team any more.   With each clip of him at the poker table somewhere in Temecula, the answer is clearly no.   The duties are going to his son Jim Buss, and frankly the man is a bit of a chore to stomach.  This is OBVIOUSLY not a move to better the team.  It's a move to make a splash, and it's stupid.  This is a move to make the Lakers more media friendly.  Well, I don't like it.   Just as Mike Brown's contract was, D'antoni will also be a waste of money at the end of the day.  Regular season games will be fine, but you wait until the playoffs: Mike D'antoni is going to get his ass kicked in strategy.

The Lakers used to be ahead of the curve with roster transactions, but today and for the last three years, all they've been doing is catching up.   I stated a while ago they needed to get younger, faster, deeper, and better on the perimeter.  LA did none of those things.  Surely they made a splash and got big names, but the fundamental needs were mostly ignored.  Dwight Howard does help one badly needed area in their defense, but overall, speed is killing the team and all the Lakers did was get slower aside from Howard.  On the other hand, Howard's back trouble could prove to make him just as slow as the other guys!

The Lakers are an absolute mess.   Today, they just hired themselves out of the NBA Finals.  It's not a coincidence D'antoni went his entire career without an NBA Finals appearance, even with some pretty good talent in Phoenix.   Get ready for a circus, friends, and enjoy the show.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Forget "maybe", it's done! Goodbye Mike Brown


OFFICIAL: Lakers Relieve Mike Brown of Head Coaching Duties

Just wow.

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 9th

Before going on, I want to offer my gratitude to all who serve.  Veterans everywhere, including my Grandfather, and including the former neighbor of mine who once served in the Marines, they all matter to me.   It's scary out there, but our service men and women keep us safe.  I can't fathom how that's bad for any of us.  My best to all veterans, may they be celebrated for now and always.

I'm simulatneously excited and nervous about the latest news from ESPN's Marc Stein.   Mike Brown is said to be on the chopping block pending the Lakers home stand this coming week.   Now that's news!   I think every Lakers fan deep down inside 1) hopes the news is true and 2) would not mind the Lakers tanking the series so that Brown can be escorted kindly to another franchise.

Dreams, they can happen but whether they come true is another matter.

You know, a friend of mine relayed the story of an encounter with a neighbor of his.  You know what the rest of us call our female neighbors?  Missed oportunities!  This is why the man in question needs free drinks for the whole weekend.  That was $.

I'm very excited for tonight's activity.  A lady friend and I are heading to C&O's over in Venice/Marina Del Rey (it's on the border) pending other unforseen circumstances, cancellations, etc.  Once every hour, the speaker system plays "That's Amore" and everyone sings along.  Perhaps people may not like that too much, but for most patrons it's mad fun.  The pasta at C&O's... is tremendous, and there's plenty of it.  I look forward to it, and hope this all goes down.

My favorite Italian Restaurant back in Santa Barbara, by the way, was Palazzio on State Street.  There were a bunch of good Italian restaurants out there but I liked that one for sentimental reasons: fun with friends, good caesar salad, and those bread rolls.  Oh baby, it was all about the bread rolls, and you could get some balsamic sauce and the olive oil to dip it in and the rolls just kept on coming.  I really can't stand restaurants that are stingy with little things like bread and condiments, so it was a treat to have a place with generous portions like Palazzio.  I hope it's still around.

Tomorrow, as I'd hinted before, I'm going to make a run at meeting Olympic Swimmer Rebecca Soni.  For all I know the plan fails miserably (just as every attempt to go see the Stanley Cup has).  We'll see.  If all goes well I'll try for a photo with her.   It's like a mission.  It'd be rad if Ricky Berens (aka her boyfriend) was there too, he's a cool dude.

Interestingly, there's a USA Grand Prix swim meet in Minnesota this weekend.  And guess who's there!  You got it, Chloe Sutton.  She's ready to approach her return to the Olympics with a venegance.  She's in a ton of events this weekend, something like 6-8 events.  Insane.  Many other big swimmers will swim at Minnesota including the wunderkind Missy Franklin and Ryan Lochte.  Good times ahead for swimming fans.

I'm telling you, one of the four teams in the BCS Top 4 is going to lose this weekend.  I can feel it!  I just can't decide which one it will be.

Anyone ever go to Yardhouse for sports?  I hear it's good for sports and food, and there's one at L.A. Live.  Tweet me if you've been... I'm @diningwithdave .

I believe, THAT is all for now.  Enjoy the long Veterans Day Weekend.

Dave's LOCKS of the Week: NFL Week 10, NCAA Week 11

An *extremely* tough week coming up on

Dave's (blam!)
LOCKS (slam!)
of the Week (clink)

More than usual, these games are going to be tough to pick.  I believe last week we went 1-3, so it's time to pick up the pieces:

First we start in Cincinnati where we seek to get the NFL pick out of the way.  The Giants are still a good team despite the loss against PIT at home last week.   In fact, with the G-Men giving only 3.5, I'd be hard pressed not to give the points on a Sunday afternoon.  With talent like the Giants, it'd be really hard for them to lose back to back games.   Unless the game got really ugly, they're a 50/50 shot to win by 4 or more.  At worst, they'd win by 3.   I'm going to say that the odds are on our side with the Giants.  NY -3.5.

Next, back to College Football.  Wow, is this a toughie.

We go to Gainesville and select a game with a team that I don't think scores too well:  Florida.  The Gators will host Louisiana Lafayette and I love LA Lafayette to cover +26.5.  

Next, to Boston College where the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame will play the Golden Eagles.  After a grueling multiple-overtime win for the Irish, I think they're due for a second letdown at Boston.   The Eagles are getting 19 points at home... that's right NINETEEN POINTS.  If you think the Irish, who can barely score 20 points a game if they're lucky, are going to win a game by more than 19, and they're not playing at home OR on a neutral site, then that shows you just how overrated Notre Dame is.  For a point spread to be that high, even against a bad team like the Eagles, shows how many Notre Dame homers have bet on the game to pump up the point spread.  I would be appalled if Notre Dame won by that much.   Boston College +19.... *easily.*

Lastly, our journey takes us to Stanford Stadium where the Cardinal host the very interesting Oregon State with their good defense.   It's going to be a close one, but I will go out on a limb and select the Beavers +4.0.  It won't be easy but there's a decent shot at Oregon State getting the outright win.  They have had big road wins before, including one at UCLA.   What's to stop them here?  They run the ball well, have a great defense, and seem to do reasonably well keeping teams from scoring touchdowns in the  Red Zone.  They've had a great year.   Oregon State +4.

To recap, NYG -3.5, LA Lafayette +26.5, BC +19 and Ore. State +4.   Enjoy all the games everyone.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 8th

What is UP?

This week has gone so quickly.  I cannot believe it's Thursday.  It is insane.  I'm happy!  I'm flabbergasted too.

Governor... "Chris" Christie.   Imagine a last name so similar to the first name?   Over the years I've seen a lot of these and half the time I wonder if the names are real, i.e. not changed to become a stage name.

Casey Kasem... that sounds like a stage name, but it actually isn't.  "Casey" is just a nickname, but the last name is legit.

Carl Carlton.  Really??   I did not buy this as a real name for a second but maybe he had some bad mamma jammas.  Just as fine as they could be.  Welp, I checked and the name checks out.  That his is honest to goodness actual name.

Rod Roddy.  Here's another one (R.I.P. by the way).   Roddy is the correct last name, but the "Rod" was a bit of a stretch.  His name by birth was Robert Ray Roddy, but "Rod" seems like a shortened form of "Robert."  Catchy name, come on down!

Then there's the big one:  Al Albuquerque.  True name and legit, even if Mike Francesa won't believe it.

Interesting, huh?

Ever hear of the term "continental breakfast" at hotels?   They should just call it "cheap breakfast."   Oh a bunch of tossed together fruits and some breads they grabbed from Costco.

In Los Angeles, they have all kinds of different pizza, including authentic pizza, esoteric pizza, and artisan pizza.  The pizza they DON'T have is Toppers.   It's hard to explain what Toppers is.  Toppers... as I grew up with in Oxnard and Ventura, is a crustless pizza with lots of a zesty tomato sauce.   It's baked in a typical pizza oven and comes out a little thicker than most pizzas, but not as thick as a pan pizza.  Without the crust, the cheese goes all the way to the edge.  It's like wall-to-wall movie screens.

Toppers is a Ventura County signature.  Even in college at Cal Lutheran they had a Toppers nearby in Thousand Oaks.  It's tremendous, as is their salad bar and their oven baked sandwiches.  In Santa Barbara, their answer is Rusty's.  Similar idea but not as good.  I tell you it's that extra tomato-y zesty sauce.   Totally makes the pizza at Toppers.  In the L.A. area, there is no answer.  They try so hard to be artsy fartsy, but they haven't attempted a down-to-earth "not trying to be New York" style pizza like Toppers.   In fact, I don't even think they'd have a Toppers like pizza in New York.   New Yorkers would probably scoff at it, but I love it.   Can't we just appreciate both?  Here's a photo of a Toppers Pizza:

Isn't that delicious?   Marvelous, folks.

It just occurred to me there's some other pizza chain in the Mid-West that also is called "Toppers".   Not at all the same, though.  They seem to be a bigger chain and they don't use the crustless design.  

Toppers also represents the family pizza parlor, which is a place like Round Table, or a place like what Pizza Hut used to be many years ago.   Families go to Toppers often to enjoy the games, salad, and good pizza.  We have a new location that opened up on the Channel Islands harbor near my parents' home that's fantastic.   They also will show games on flat screen TVs around the building.

No Frills Family Pizza Parlors are easier to find in L.A. thanks to Shakey's.  I too love the Shakey's.  The Pizza is not as good but I have always liked the atmosphere, the Mojo Potatoes, and their all-you-can-eat lunch special.   My buddy in Torrance tells me there's also a Lamppost Pizza out there.   Lamppost Pizza is a familiar name:  that was also a staple over in Thousand Oaks and Newbury Park.

No crazy stories to share today.  Would it even be worth talking about the Lakers right now?  I can't watch any of the games, but it sounds like the media en masse is giving up on them.  Fair enough, go give up on them after freaking 4 games, usually teams respond better when the media puts them down.


The only thing we can say conclusively is that Mike Brown sucks with offense.  We have known this for *years.*  People looked at me weird when I said he was holding the team back after two games.  Suddenly, the rest of the country is saying the same thing after four.  Can't figure it out.

But again... its week one.  Time is in abundance.

The "Kobe Stare" which I haven't even seen yet, no thanks to Directv's holdout on TWC Sportsnet, is apparently a big deal.   I'm telling you, people need to find better things to talk about.  Of course Kobe is going to be upset when the Lakers aren't winning.  What would happen if he was joking around on the bench last night?   That would be far worse.

BOLD PREDICTION OF THE WEEK:  At least one of the top four teams in the BCS is going to lose this weekend.  I don't know which one, but one of them will.

LOCKS of the week, by the way, is going to be impossible.   I can't place confidence on any of the point spreads this week, either in College or Pro Football.

That's all I have.   Go out and get some pizza!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 7th

All right, I'm pumped up!

First of all, I'm pumped up because I'm going to set aside about a half hour to TV's "Survivor" program tonight on the "Dave in the City" podcast.  For weeks, I was looking for a spot to schedule a "Survivor" recap, and here it is!   It's perfectly placed: at the half way point of the Survivor TV season. I hope you get to listen in, and call in as well!  We welcome everyone's opinions.

NEXT I'm pumped up because I've been using this new belt my Mom got me.  It's a seat belt!  An authentic GM seat belt buckle attached to a specially designed seat belt that can fit pants.  Let me tell you guys, this thing is convenient.   Any time I need to take a leak, click, and I'm ready to go.

All we need now is an 800 degrees pizza to complete a perfect day.  I hope traffic cooperates.

I've been in the midst of some very tricky projects this week.  First, I have to figure out how to clone a Mac hard drive with a bootcamp partition on it.  I'm not one to complain about the challenge.  As a matter of fact, I'm shocked that I'm the first one in the department to ponder this.   I think I have it figured out, but it was extremely hairy.  

Up next, I'm configuring a new machine for deployment.  It's not nearly as complicated, but tedious.  We couldn't set up an image because I was unable to buy the exact same computer model from Dell.  Instead, I'm going to install all the programs from scratch.  It sucks, but it's not hard to do, just tedious.

Saturday could be a HUGE day for the campus of USC.   A lil birdie, aka Twitter, tells me that World Record Holder and Olympic Gold Medalist Rebecca Soni will be doing a meet and greet for about an hour before the USC meet against Arizona/Arizona State.  This is big news.  Some of my UCLA Masters colleagues have met Natalie Coughlin.  Others met Dana Vollmer here in town.  If all goes well, Saturday is my turn.

The wild thing about all this is I think all of the above swimmers were room mates at the Olympics.

Now just a moment!  In case one were to think I was quitting on College Football that Saturday, the meet runs from about 10:30 until 12:30.   I would have zero chance of missing any football games because the best ones begin at 12:30 and go from there.  In fact, SC is close enough to L.A. Live that I could just take the train to either Yardhouse or ESPN Zone to watch the big BCS games.

On Friday night, it is time to get crackin' and shop for christmas!  I intend to get a couple presents that night.   I also have to compose my 15 person shopping list.  Most families get 2 or 3 people.  I get 15.   The reason is because I include an exchange present, and my Mom's family i.e. my grandparents, my aunt and HER family.

I can't get anyone to go to this swim meet and football games with me.  Geez, you'd think there were lots of swimming/college football mongos in Los Angeles, but no...

For those of you out East, I still do not have the Lakers channel, Time Warner Cable Sportsnet.   TWC announced an agreement with Cox which literally left only Directv (and Dish but who cares?) as the lone holdout.   I don't even know if the Lakers played *last night.*   It's a little refreshing in a way, because without the Lakers day to day, it allows better perspective on the season.

Last night was Election Central at the Dave household.  I choose not to comment on the particulars, but I thought it'd be a much closer election than it was.  Then, about 8:20 pm everything came undone.  My buddy Jacob Rosales had that called from the beginning, and the man knows what he's talking about.  Jacob got a degree in Political Science.

My favorite facebook exchange of the night had nothing to anything but it was somewhat related..

Jacob: Alright San Francisco. Let's destroy some MUNI buses....or is that only win we win the World Series?
[Jacob's Friend]: Just a heads up....there will be no more San Francisco if the 9ers win the super bowl. This city will explode

I await that day, whenever it happens.

You know, as long as I'm on the subject, Giants fans and 49ers fans have probably been at each others' throats lately.  It is clear the Giants have the Niners' number, but it has revived a rivalry that goes back to the late 80's.   It's as true a rivalry as you can imagine in the NFL.   BUT, can it be a "rivalry" if only one team is winning?

Oh hoooo!   That's all from here.  Enjoy your Wednesday.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 6th

Can you believe I paid 6 dollars for apples?  I went to the store, got a bunch of giant apples at $1.50 a pound and then saw it on the receipt.  Six Bucks!   Good thing they're big apples.

The Volcano Taco is still going at Taco Bell.  Do the dance!  I love volcano tacos.

Happy Election Day.  Hope you don't have any trouble voting today.  

I'm still unable to grasp the concept of the iPad mini.  It's an ipad.... but smaller.   Isn't that an iphone?  But no, they tell me it's bigger than the iphone.  Yet, it's not big enough to do any meaningful navigation is it?  So what's the use?

Does anyone come to the epiphany that a) Damn, my iPad is way too big!   I need a smaller version.  and then b) BUT my iPhone is too small.  What will I do?    Hrm.

It's a weird week for weather in Los Angeles.  Yesterday the high was 90 degrees.  On Saturday, it will be 59 degrees.  Imagine a 30 degree difference within 7 days?  It's bizarre.   I enjoyed yesterday's sunshine, though.

Remember, friends, when you're in California, cherish the moments when you don't have to wear a jacket.   Those days will be gone and when they are, you'll go months without knowing when the warm days come again.   My first year going to swimming, I remember going well into June before I could confidently leave each morning without a jacket on.

Yesterday I spent a lot of my afternoon listening to the Queen Album catalog on Spotify.   I went from Queen II all the way to some of "A Day at the Races" in about 2 hours.   Queen albums were not very long, with the exception of "A Night at the Opera" which ran quite a long time.   It's neat to be able to run through most of their discography in less than an afternoon.  Never really occurred to me how short their records were.

It brings about two box sets I'd always been intrigued by on CD:  One -- the Beatles in mono, which was released three years ago.  The second one is the Queen Box set, which also packages their albums up to "The Game" (I think) in mini LP record sleeves for each one.

I believe that is all I have... enjoy your day, all.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 5th

Wow, into November already!

The Steelers won?  Wow.  Justice.

I really enjoyed Dolphins/Colts yesterday.  Good game, and a look into the future of the NFL.   Imagine if the Dolphins and Colts play for the AFC Title game someday?  Andrew Luck has delivered and then some, and he looks confident, has a great arm, and makes the plays.  The Dolphins countered with good defense, good coverage, and a relative lack of mistakes.  It was a joy to watch.   It's too bad very few people across America got to see it.

The Cowboys ceased being America's team when they couldn't win America's "game" i.e. the Super Bowl.  They haven't done that thing in over 16 years.   It's going to take a lot for them to get back.   HOWEVER, I think they have the players.  The issue is attitude, culture, and coaching.  All three of them suck.   The Cowboys are more absorbed with their fancy stadium than the performance of the team, and Jerry Jones can grandstand all he wants about how he wants to win.  That's a bold-faced lie.  If that was true he'd let an actual GM run the team.  He'd hire a coach that he could trust to make the decisions on his own.  None of these things happened since at least 2006, and in that day, it was a brief 2 year run, speaking of Parcells.  Until the Cowboys have a complete change in organizational philosophy, all they will ever be is a team to be laughed at.

BCS.   Big fan of this week's standings.  So much so, I watched nearly the entire BCS Rankings TV show on ESPN last night.   Alabama is #1, K-State is #2, Oregon is #3, and Notre Dame is #4.  I can't argue with any of that.  I won't speak much more of ND right now, but they won, that's the bottom line.  However, equally as unconvincing was Oregon's defense, but because of Oregon's opponent, USC, I think they earned #3.

With that said, getting from #3 to #2 is not going to happen unless we see a lot of losses between now and December.   The principle problem is, we saw Oregon's defense get exposed.  This was a big reason for me watching Ore/SC this weekend, aside from my usual allegiance to the Trojans: I wanted to see how Oregon's defense would fare with a top 5 NCAA Offense.  You can't give up over 50 points in any game and be considered a credible National Championship contender.   For that reason, I am now going back on my original rant against the BCS system.  I was honestly expecting Oregon to allow about 30 points from SC, maybe less.  FIFTY?  As the season goes along (and assuming Notre Dame beats SC) we might see Oregon fall to 4th for good and I would no longer have a problem with it.

I was at the grocery store picking up some snacks and saw a whole shelf full of Keruig K-Cups for sale.  You can buy smaller boxes of K-Cups at the supermarket, did you know this???  I thought I'd have to hold out for another order.

Another odd tangent last night: I was reading more about the difference between sonic quality of CD's vs Vinyl.  What I was confused about was music that was recorded to digital using Pro Tools, and then mastered on Analog Vinyl anyway.  If you're putting Digitally Recorded data onto an analog format, doesn't that dissolve the inherent advantage of analog sound?  So I did some research and went into user opinions.

The answer is yes, BUT what you gain is the increased Sampling Rate, which can never exceed the mere 44.1 Khz for CD.  In Pro Tools or other pure digital formats, you can record at 192 KHz or 96Khz.  That's a huge difference.   Furthermore, the bit rate, I can imagine, must be enormous, compared to even the otherwise decent 1.4 MBps for CD.  In theory, Analog can resolve any sampling rate you want because all it's doing is transcribing the waveforms verbatim.  In addition, the DAC's used at the mastering plant will be far better than what's on most people's CD players.

One might wonder: "then why don't you just make a digital format that can resolve all that detail?"   They did, at one point in time, it was called Super Audio CD, the layman's term for DSD digital sound encoding.  However, it was very short lived and not a lot of discs were released for the format.   The market for true audiophiles is very small.  Maybe in the tens of millions at most, out of a 300 million person country.  Yet, the Vinyl Record offers the side benefit of the hipster look and feel of larger album covers, the chic detail of putting the black round disc onto a turntable, the other advantage of being used by DJ's at dance halls, and much more.   As it always was, Vinyl is a versatile medium.

So, in an unusual twist, vinyl has revived itself as an advant-garde format, but the format appeals for different reasons for different people.  A medium that tries to appeal to every demographic?  Talk about a throwback!

Meanwhile, back home, my vinyl listening was a re-listen of "True" by Spandau Ballet.  It's a jazz-infused New Wave album from 1983 that I enjoy immensely.  Lots of bongos, I like the bongos.

My next move is to purchase new material, i.e. new releases from new artists on the Vinyl Format.   I'm a huge fan of "The Arcade Fire" so I intend to go with them first.   Maybe a little Lady Gaga... maybe some Pinback (this isn't so new, actually).  

I'm still shocked at the way Marvin Gaye died, nearly 30 years later.   One of the most confusing deaths of a music icon ever.

All right, let's talk about voting.   Not the candidates or who should be president and that thing, but let's talk about those annoying propositions.

All of us get those annoying commercials about Propositions for the Voter Ballot.  "VOTE YES ON 280.  No!  Vote 'No' on 280!   YOU ARE A FOOL IF YOU VOTE PROP Y.   No, don't listen to them, PROP Y IS WONDERFUL."

I get so annoyed by all those sleazy political ads that I want to, someday, go to the polls and vote "no" on everything.  "Fund public education?"  No!  "Obscure tax loophole?"  No!  "Some action related to roads and infrastructure?"  No!!!

The worst one ever was the proposition to fund a state-wide super-train that would connect LA to San Francisco.  I loved the idea, I was all for it.  I voted "Yes."  WHERE IS THIS SUPER TRAIN?   All of these political promises are a bunch of hooey.

Here's what I'm voting on:  Vote YES for Dinner... boom, I get dinner.   Vote McDonald's for Monday night Football, your vote counts.   I did it once before, and they're right.   Vote McChicken for entree -- done and done.

That's all I got... for now.   Til next time.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

I'm banned! Congrats Notre Dame.

I'm instituting a self-ban from a certain message board for an undetermined amount of time.  Similar to the Yankee ban, this is voluntary, and I won't go longer than a week.

I did people wrong this weekend by trying to intentionally jinx Notre Dame and it bit me back in the ass in a big way.   It wasn't right, it was a dopey idea, and actually, I'm glad it blew up in my face.  I had it coming.

Notre Dame fought off what has been called the "Dave Mush" and beat Pitt 29-26 in 3 overtimes.  To do this, they had to overcome a 20-6 deficit in the second half.  Luck also had to bounce their way.  Such is the Irish.  It's not called "luck of the Irish" for nothin'!

Anyway, with this, combined with Oregon's unconvincing defense at USC, it seems that the Irish might actually make an even better case for the National Championship game.

As for myself, I'll hang out here on the blog and will continue to haunt twitter/facebook if you need me:

Plus, we'll keep doing the DITC podcasts on Monday and Wednesday nights.

It's not so much "shame" that is keeping me from the undisclosed message board.  I've just been worn out by all the Notre Dame stuff lately.   I've been worn out by other little things too.  The Lakers have worn me out.  The mediocrity of the NFL has worn me out.  My lousy fantasy team has worn me out.  Sports in general have worn me out.  I didn't realize how much commitment it was to keep up with all the sports, but perhaps some time off will help.  I'd like some more time to devote to little silly things like playing SongPop, eating cookies, and listening to some records/CD's in the bedroom.  So, I ain't going nowhere, just taking a mini-virtual-vacay.  And, if anyone wants me back at the board, I'll be back soon enough. 

I mean, when I read the quote "Dave has lost a viewer for life," I'm not sure what else to do.  Peace out, homies.  More blog fun to come on Monday.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Dave's LOCKS of the Week: NFL Week 9 (ha!), NCAA Week 10

Here comes the November

Dave's (blam!)
LOCKS (clank)
of the Week (fizzle)

This week, I'm putting the NFL aside.  I've had enough of their shifty point spreads.   The NFL is a joke... nobody can play well in this league aside from a half dozen teams.    Why go on?

I'll try it again next week, but I'm not wasting my time pulling my hair out over 3 point spreads.

So!  In light of this, we'll do four college selections from the Top 25 and beyond here we go.

First we go to South Bend, IN.  It's the home of Notre Dame's Fighting Irish and it's a case where you have a whopping 17 point spread against the visiting Pitt Panthers.

I was going to go 100% on the Panthers but then this happened:

Now I'm all in on Notre Dame.  There is NO CHANCE the Panthers will cover -17 with that kind of distraction and potential suspensions.   Notre Dame ALL THE WAY on Saturday Irish -17.

Speaking of traps, the +8.5 at USC against the visiting Oregon is begging me to take the underdog, and this week I'll take the bait.  Normally I always go against SC against the spread -- not betting them to lose but just to "not cover."  This week, for the first time in a long time, the Trojans are an underdog.   SC is going to come out with a great effort, angry from the loss out in Tuscon, and I think they'll make this close until the very end.  Trojans +8.5

Up next, another trap at Baton Rouge.  I grant you that Alabama is on another level right now but for a night game against the LSU Tigers, I would go with the Tigers to at least keep it close.  I like LSU +9.

Finally, we stay with college football and go into another Top 5 game with Kansas State at home hosting Oklahoma State.   This is merely a feeling I have, given Oklahoma State's great scoring ability and Kansas State feeling the pressure of #2, but I think I'll go with the Cowboys +9.   Mike Gundy does a tremendous job coaching Oklahoma State and they'll be quite fired up for this one even on the road at Manhattan.   I'm really going out on a limb with this one, but I'll go with the other OSU +9.

To recap:  Notre Dame -17, USC +8.5, LSU +9, and K-State +9.  Now get ready for a showcase of blowouts!  Oh baby.   Enjoy the games everyone!

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: November 2nd

This week is going by very quickly!   It felt like Monday yesterday and now it's already Friday.  I love it.

Big, nay, enormous College Football weekend coming up.    All top four teams have a big game on TV:  Alabama, Kansas State, Notre Dame, and Oregon.   We went over the particulars on the podcast this week.  Notre Dame's matchup isn't really that big, it's Pitt.  More on this later, it's a LOCK of the Week.

People have hammered me for posting that Mike Brown should be fired from the Lakers after only two games.  All right, I admit, I got a little too excited.   It is such a long season I shouldn't even write about the Lakers until January.  Onward.

I wonder what to do this weekend.  I owe three people money.  Not a good start to the Christmas season.  I mean it's only 10-20 bucks each but still, it's crazy.

I need more coffee... more onward.

I had a plan in place for Christmas Shopping.  I have a big family, including some other relatives like my Aunt's Family and my Grandparents.  Then my Dad has a birthday *in* December.  It's a lot of presents, about a dozen.  Here's the plan:  I can shop for one present at a time in the weeks leading up to Christmas Eve.  That was it's not as huge a drain on the budget.  So each week, I plan out one present to buy.   Siphoning the costs over a few months will be the best plan.

Sadly, I should have started that plan two months ago.  Oh the pain.

By the way!   For my Dad's birthday present, would you believe it, I found it in my closet.  I bought him a DVD box set a year ago for Christmas and then decided not to use it.  All these months, I completely forgot it was still in my closet!   I start rummaging through it and there's a sealed "Cincinnati Reds 1975 Complete World Series Telecasts" DVD set.  Who knew?!

Uh oh, I hope my Dad isn't reading the blog, I might have given it away.

People often ask me what I want for Christmas, and it's not an easy answer.  The problem is what I really want costs more than what is reasonable for a present.  What do I *really* want?

  • A new DVD Recorder
  • The complete Remastered Beatles Albums collection on Vinyl
  • Air Fare to a US City of Choice
  • Tickets to a Lakers Game
  • Dark Socks
  • Boxer Shorts
  • A $75 gift card to Mastro's Steakhouse (if you can even do that)
  • Acommodations in Las Vegas at a hotel on the strip
  • Movie Passes
  • A Peet's Gift Card
  • The Entire Monty Python's Flying Circus TV Series on DVD
  • The Big Bang Theory Season 5 on DVD

Most of the items on this list except for the shorts and socks are completely unreasonable requests.   Most of the time I try to be open ended with a response but I usually throw in the socks and underwear in the request. 

I sound so greedy with that list... I feel pretty awful about it, now, haha.   Ah very well.

In any case, that's all for the moment.  LOCKS are coming up!