Dude at Target foodcourt is measuring baseball card packs with a micrometer and muttering to himself. You’re taking it a WEE bit seriously.
As I write this, the whirlwind Christmas season has come to a close (can’t really say the holidays, as New Years is still ahead of us.), and what a season we had this year. Work ended on Tuesday night, followed up by volleyball. On Wednesday, we made the colossal Wegmans run, prepped the house for the ensuing visitors, and got a good night’s sleep. Woke up Thursday morning, got some last minute wrapping done, and we welcomed Mom and Dad S. to the house. We got them settled, then made another Weggie’s run to get the catering and some last-minute stuff. Came back home, and Tiff and her mom went to work in the kitchen getting food for dinner and Christmas Day ready. We had a very nice dinner and celebrated Tiff’s father’s birthday. Opened a couple stocking stuffers at night to get in the Christmas spirit, and called it a night rather early in anticipation of Christmas Day.
We got the house ready, Tiff and Mom got the food ready, and then the Bonus/Kowalenko caravan rolled in around 12:45. We got them unloaded and in, and commenced with the food, drink, and merriment! Tons of snacks, Amanda’s buffalo wing dip, some good beers, getting full even before dinner. We packed 15 people into the house, and that’s about our limit! We opened a couple gifts, then had Grandma’s perogies and Dad’s mushroom soup as appetizers. Gotta move some of the old traditions to our place! Opened a couple more gifts, and then it was time for the big dinner. Ham, squash, scalloped potatoes, green bean casserole, etc. Excellent. After everyone digested and had their fill, we filled up even more with cookies and the cheesecake my aunt and uncle brought. It was awesome to have everyone up to our place, and thankfully the weather held out so driving for everyone wasn’t a factor. A wonderful Christmas, and for our first time hosting, it went really well.
What to do the day after Christmas? Why, go shopping of course! We hit a couple places in Henrietta, then after lunch at the Distillery and a quick detour to Beers of the World, we trucked out to Eastview to get our shop on. The mall was packed, even more so than any mall I saw before Christmas. A jaunt back to Barnes and Noble in Pittsford, then back home for a dinner of the best leftovers from the night before. Still tasted great. For the nightcap, Tiff and her parents watched the latest Harry Potter movie while I watched the Sabres lose.
We got up early the next morning, and grabbed a really good breakfast at Peppermints on W. Henrietta Rd. Yum. We saw Tiff’s parents off, cleaned up the house a bit, then Pat and Jodi came over. We did our little gift exchange, and went out for a big late lunch at Sticky Lips. One BBQ platter later, we rolled out of there and came back to the house and visited for a little bit. We saw Pat and Jodi off, and then I saw myself off to Buffalo to meet Adam and hit up the Every Time I Die Christmas show at Mohawk Place. Since that didn’t start ’til 9, we grabbed some dinner and pre-gamed a bit at the Thirsty Buffalo on Elmwood. Had a good time there, watched the Jets prevent the Colts from going undefeated, and watched the Sabres beat the Blues. We trekked down to Mohawk, met my buddy Art, and had a great time hanging out at the show. Thankfully, I only had to drive back to NT, not Rochester, and Dad was still up to greet me!
Slept in a bit, putzed around in the morning, and then Dad and I grabbed some lunch at Ted’s (mmm, Char-Broiled hotdogs!) before I bounced back to Rochester and Dad took off for the office. Got back home, lounged a bit, made a Weggie’s run, and after dinner I organized the basement, watched some hockey, I’m still watching some football, and barring some disaster, I’ll win my second straight fantasy football title! Not looking forward to getting ready to head back to work tomorrow, but I do have volleyball tomorrow night though, so that oughta be the usual rip-roaring good time! Working Wednesday and Thursday also, and then New Years Eve festivities…
We’ve been quite the social butterflies the last couple of days… Thursday night had us out at the Thirsty Turtle, as the Bills game was on NFL Network. We met both Greg & Mindy and Pat & Jodi out there, and had a great time watching a less-than-great game. Friday night we met Greg & Mindy out at Matthews, and then wandered down to Easy on East to watch the More Than Me guys play acoustically.
After that late night, Tiff and I poked around town a bit, then Pat & Jodi joined us for our big Sabres-Rangers hockey trip to Buffalo. We had a great time last night, first stopping at Jim’s Steak-Out for dinner, then we caught the train down to the arena, where despite the Sabres 2-1 loss (and Pat’s gloating, of course!) we had a blast. A pit stop at Tully’s on Main and Transit before heading home for good, and we slept in quite late this morning! As you can see below, one of our stops yesterday was Record Archive, and in addition to my usual CD shopping, Tiff picked up a couple traditional Christmas albums. Are we done with shopping yet? Please? Maybe? Oh um, yeah, yay Christmas!
Enjoying the shopping Mecca that is the Waterloo Premium Outlets. Peoplewatching is fantastic here!
The stories behind the one-liner updates…
Working backward, we had quite the weekend. We entertained Pat and Jodi for dinner on Sunday night, caught some of the hockey game. Tiff and I had done the grocery shopping thing prior to that, and at Ruby Tuesday’s for lunch, I was beyond pleasantly surprised at their beer selection. I got an Abita Turbodog, but they also had the Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA, among a couple of others. Who knew? Saturday was Greg and Mindy’s wedding, which was a blast. As an already married person, it’s always amusing to watch others take the plunge. We sat with a fun group of people, so there was none of the “staring at each other the whole night” thing going on. Good times. We made it out to the Distillery on Friday night for a little happy hour with Aimee and her crew, which capped off a wholly unremarkable week of work.
The week in play, however, was rather full! Thursday night had Pat and I at our first roller hockey scrimmage, which was fairly ill-attended. Which was just as well, because despite us being full of piss and vinegar at the beginning, we both tuckered out pretty quick. Short shifts are definitely going to be key for the first couple of games! Wednesday night Tiff had volleyball, so I met Christina out at the ballpark to watch the Red Wings get spanked. We got through the first out in the top of the 9th inning before it started pouring, so needless to say, we did NOT stick around for the 80 minute rain delay, just to watch the final 5 outs of an already decided game. Tuesday night was my volleyball night, and we took two out of three games to put us squarely in contention for a playoff spot. Playoffs? PLAYOFFS? PLAYOFFS?
Speaking of the playoffs, I’m watching the games, but I’m not terribly excited about the repeat Stanley Cup Finals. Detroit looks like they’re running away with it again, and unless the Pens wake up and take both at home, they’re done. Looks like one more week before it becomes all baseball, all the time. Tiff’s gonna love that. The Mets are competing for the top of the division again, so that’s cool. Maybe someone else will blow it the last month of the season instead this year.
I love how some folks in the neighborhood don’t grasp the concept that you’re allowed to have more than one garbage can. As in, it’s not necessary to try to cram every last thing you’re throwing out into the one tote, such that you can’t close the lid. And / or piling more bags around the can. Furthermore, it’s apparent from the weather that the lack of lid closing is going to blow the “excess” trash all over the place, and make the neighborhood look like crap. Seriously, garbage cans aren’t expensive, invest in one. Or, ya know, generate less trash.
So Coors really needs to put the disclaimer on the bottom of the screen saying that you can’t purchase an insurance policy for cold beer? Seriously? I have precisely that insurance policy. It lives in my kitchen, and it’s called a fridge. I must say, though, that the mountains on the can turning blue is a slightly better gimmick than Miller Lite’s “taste protector” thing. But Miller’s commercials are better. “Does the place get busy?” “Last weekend we were mobbed.” “OHHHHHH!”
Who has two thumbs and finally successfully tied a tie? This guy! (I know… pathetic, lame, moron, stupid, etc. etc. etc.) Considering I wear a tie once every six months, TOPS, for me this is a feat.
Fun times ahead as well, with volleyball Tuesday, roller hockey on a rare Wednesday, East End Fest on Friday (More Than Me and Uncle Plum!), the Hip @ Artpark Saturday, and roller hockey again on Sunday night. Busy busy busy!
We had quite the weekend both heading to DC, and of course once we were there. Adam and Matt met me at the track, and we took off for Ithaca on Thursday night, to hang with Karl and Kelley, and then get a jump on the travel. We grabbed dinner at the Ithaca Ale House, and followed that up with stints at Pixel (where they had NES’s hooked up to play, plus The Simpsons in an arcade cabinet!), and the Chapter House. We finished up the night at Benchwarmers, watching a couple of the OT’s of the Syracuse-UConn game, before heading back to K&K’s house (and watched ‘Cuse win in the 6th overtime!).
We got up ridiculously early Friday morning and started our journey down to DC, but not before a couple of detours! Since I-81 runs right past Potsville, PA, we had no choice but to stop and tour the brewery of one of our favorite beers, Yuengling!
As if that wasn’t fun enough, a little further up the road was Harrisburg, where we stopped for lunch at the Appalachian Brewing Company, where in addition to the great beer, I had an amazing chicken pot pie with a cheddar cornbread crust. Phenomenal!
After lunch, we literally drove around the corner, and found ourselves confronted with the entrance to Troegs Brewery! More beer! Yay! Nice place, we got our tasting on, and continued on our way to Northern Virginia.
We arrived at Kevin’s place, where he and Dan greeted us, and we had a delicious meal cooked up by Dan. Carlo rolled in a little later, and much food, drink, and fun was had by all. We even got to watch Syracuse win another OT game in the Big East Semifinals. Not that I’m a college basketball fan by any stretch, but when everyone is collectively rooting for one team in a big and exciting game, it’s kinda hard not to get into it!
We awoke Saturday morning and set sail for our nation’s capital, about a half-hour away. After getting our morning fuel, we hiked down Pennsylvania Ave towards the White House. Our first stop was the Renwick Gallery, then onto the White House (or at least, around it). Before any of the other monuments, we made a special trip to the Albert Einstein Memorial, outside the National Academy of Sciences. Our reasons were threefold: Firstly, Einstein was cool to us technically-minded guys. Secondly, it was Pi day (3/14), and such a mathy day required a visit to the mathematician. And thirdly, and unbeknownst to us, 3/14 was Einstein’s birthday! Yes, we sang Happy Birthday to him, much to the amusement of the others at the monument!
We did the whirlwind tour of most of the monuments, including Lincoln, Vietnam, Korean War, DC War Memorial, FDR, Jefferson, and we passed around the Washington Monument.
By this time, we were all hungry, so we ate at the Old Ebbitt Grill, which had been established in 1856 and apparently was DC’s first saloon. Food was great, beer selection passable, and it was a nice rest. We then continued our journey toward the National Archives, but since the line was quite long, and rain had begun to fall, we passed on that in favor of the National Museum of Natural History. We made quick work of seeing a moai, a giant squid, and the Hope diamond. We then headed towards the Capitol Building, en route to the Dubliner for a St. Patty’s Day Ale! We then backtracked to Union Station, and caught the Metro back to where we parked in the morning, near our final destination for the evening.
The Brickskeller! One of the most famous bars in DC, with hundreds of bottled beers on the menu (but not necessarily available, as Kevin unfortunately found out!). Our waiter was a dead ringer for Tay Zonday, but was quite patient with us. After eating and drinking our fill, we retired back to Kevin’s place for yet another Syracuse game (they lost the Big East final), and the anticipation of a couple more destinations in the morning.
Sunday morning brought us to the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum, which is right next to Dulles Airport. Highlights included a SR-71 Blackbird, a Concorde, an F16, and a test-flight version of the Space Shuttle (Enterprise). We all geeked out, some of us more than others (Karl, I’m looking in your direction!). After too short of a visit, we retreated back to Kevin’s hood to grab lunch where? Where else? Wegmans! Sterling, Virginia’s Wegmans to be exact. This at the urging of Dan, who had a whole shopping list ready to go 🙂 We said our goodbyes, and after making a requisite stop at a Sheetz, we hauled back to Ithaca. Kelley had dinner waiting for us (thanks Kel!), we picked up Adam’s dog at his parents house, and ran back up to the track to pick up the cars. A great time had by all, and we gotta do it again next year!
We had quite the entertaining weekend this past weekend, seeing a handful of friends and hanging out. All this despite me fighting off a cold. I shall not be deterred. Cue Puff Daddy (“Can’t nobody hold me down!”) Friday night we met Dave and Michaela out at Jeremiah’s for some beer, wings, and good times. The place was packed, the wings were hot, the beer was good, and a good time was had by all. We even hiked back to their place for a nightcap.
Saturday Tiff and I ventured out for some lunch and grocery shopping before splitting off in the evening. Tiff and Michaela did their “girls night out” thing, and I met Karl and Kelley at the Shinedown show. After the show we briefly swung by Karen’s house before hitting up MacGregors for a brew and some of those delicious Irish Nachos they have.
The time change made it seem like I got home even later than I did, so I took the opportunity for the excuse and slept in Sunday morning. Tiff and I grabbed an immensely satisfying Weggies lunch and restocked the medicine cabinet (again with the cold), and then met Pat and Jodi out at the Amerks game. $5 tickets (for wearing something red, thanks Zweigles!) are hard to beat, just like Providence was on this night. Being that Zweigles was the sponsor, during intermission they had hotdogs racing on the ice! Quite amusing. Afterwards, Tiff was hungry so we made the short trip to Dinosaur BBQ for a late snack.
A fitting end to a fun weekend, and next weekend for me should be a blast, as the guy-caravan sets sail for DC for a long weekend. Cheers!
It’s been way too long since I did a real post… waaaaaaaaay too long, and there’s been a ton of stuff going on.
First, the holidays. The usual whirlwind, down to Elmira for a one-day visit at Tiff’s Aunt’s house on the Saturday before Christmas, then home to Rochester, then Monday morning it was off to NT for a couple days. We saw Sara’s house, indulged in some Mighty Taco, the usual. Xmas Eve was great at home, as Will stopped over, as well as Jamie and her parents, so we had a full house. We drove back to Rochester that night, and Christmas Day got re-packed and headed down to Horseheads. Another great Christmas scene down there, another full house on Friday, and the usual shopping blitz. There will be no gloating about presents, but Tiff hit the nail on the head with a new pair of Adidas Shelltops (The classic Superstar II’s if anyone’s counting).
It was back to work on Monday through Wednesday, and then New Years Eve saw us hosting a little get-together, Dave and Michaela, Maggie, and all the way from NT, Sara and Adrienne finally got to see the house! Our little mexican fiesta was fun, and the next morning we all got fat at Cracker Barrel for breakfast. After we rolled out of there, I caught a bit of the Winter Classic and we just chilled. Saturday afternoon / night had Rebecca and her crew come in for her bachelorette party. The girls took over the house for a bit, and then I played chauffeur for Tiff, Rebecca and Lauren as they hit up East Ave. for some clubbing. Matt met me out for a couple beers while the girls were doing their thing, and I caught back up with them around closing time. Then *IT* happened.
The girls were crossing the street arm-in-arm, hit some ice, and went down in a heap. Tiff’s leg folded under her, and she broke her right ankle. All day Sunday was spent first at the urgent-care clinic to get X-rays, and then the hospital getting her splinted up, obtaining crutches, and filling prescriptions. Tiff’s mom came up for a couple days to help out, which considering my overnight work on Tuesday/Wednesday, was a godsend. Tiff’s surgery was Wednesday, which went smoothly, and Tiff was home resting comfortable in the late afternoon. No weight for a month, then some PT. And naturally, it’s her right ankle, so no driving, which means I’m chauffeur for awhile. I actually went to volleyball that night too (on no sleep!), and the rest of the week was uneventful. I hung out at Matt and Lisa’s Saturday night, and my parents came up yesterday to see Tiff, bring us lunch (MIGHTY TACO!), and accompany us to Hot Shots so Tiff could watch her guys play a make-up game, and Mom and Dad could finally try a garbage plate. Good times, good times!
In completely unrelated news, Amanda sent me a link to a ridiculous article in the Niagara Gazette about a 21-year old kid getting stopped for a DWI that had some hilarious quotes in it. I submitted it to FARK and got my first greenlight (story submission that makes the main page)!! Friday was a proud day. 🙂
So that’s that, Tiff actually went to work today, and this weekend coming up is Rebecca and Joel’s wedding, so we’ll be busy with that. Back to as normal as we can be, which ain’t that normal anyway 🙂
Another whirlwind weekend has passed…
Friday night right after work we hauled down to East End Fest to meet some peeps, watch some bands, drink some beer, etc. Had a great time, even though it was muggy as hell, and it was wall-to-wall people. Greg and Mindy are friends with the guys in More Than Me, so they were our attraction for the night, so to speak. East End veterans Uncle Plum were on the stage opposite MTM once they were done, so we turned our attention to them afterwards. They both sounded great, and the assembled masses were into the music. Good times, good times.
Saturday afternoon was our trek out to Casa Larga Vineyards for Tiffany’s old co-worker Paul’s wedding. It’s a very nice facility, and the whole day was top notch, from the ceremony, to the cocktail hour, to the reception / food / dessert. Everything was great, we had a good time, and congrats to Paul and Rachel! After we returned home we got some yardwork in, putting the finishing touches on the stuff we started during the week. We caught some dinner, did a little shopping, and started prepping for our get-together on Sunday.
Ah, the party. After getting my haircut, I returned home to set up the deck for our volleyball get-together. We finally put the deck to use this year, and it was also the maiden voyage for our new patio table, which replaced the cheap plastic POS that we’d had before. Plenty of fun, beer, hot dogs, hockey puck burgers, and pasta salad was had by all. And knowledge was dispensed as well. In my unending quest to learn something new every day, I was informed that I was under the completely wrong impression as to the definition of the term “nonplussed“. I thought it meant that one was not surprised, or unimpressed, whereas it actually means that one is in a state of confusion or bewilderment. Following the link above, apparently there is an American non-standard usage that does in fact mean unimpressed, but this is not the “correct” usage. I’ll be damned!
So after we said our farewells and cleaned up a bit, I was right out the door to head to roller hockey. I actually had more legs this time around (as opposed to being totally gassed after the first half last week), and played better. We still lost again, but only by 2 goals, as opposed to the 12 goal spread last week! We’re getting there!
Today has been nice and chill at work (literally, as the A/C in the office is fantastic!), and I’ll be back here tonight to do some machine moves. Busy, busy, busy!