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Showing posts from October, 2011

A Great Stress Reducer

Yesterday was BULLS BLAST.

Randy and Linda Simmons have done six of these annual fundraisers for USF Athletics and it truly is ... a BLAST (The shotgun type ... that is). My first one was three years ago and I was immediately hooked. When Randy handed me my a 12 gauge shotgun I told him that Jews don't hunt ... or shoot. I had no idea what to do with it. He was kind and patient with me, teaching me the ways of the shotgun and how to blow little orange disks to smithereens.

My teammate this year, Allen Crumbley, is no stranger to guns. He brought a few to the event (can't remember what kind they were but I think Allen called them Betsy,  Big Ben, Blaster and Scarethecrapouttaya). He also gave me a vest to wear over my Bulls Blast shirt.

"You gotta wear this Joel," he said."You can carry your shells in these pockets and I've even used the back pockets to put a few dead birds in." Hmmm ... guess Allen doesn't like when birds get in front of the targets…

Cyber Memories

Recently ... the folks at Cyberknife (my old space age friends who zapped me back to health) published my story:
Thought I'd reprint the old blog that started it.
first published 6/1/10
Momberg Goes Cyber
I know there are some other things happening in the world ... we're right in the middle of some of them now. USF is at the forefront of the BP oil spill ... in fact we are asking them for $100 million for our consortium of Florida universities to help solve the environmental problems.
But ... my mind is literally in cyberspace.
That's right ... I started my cyberknife treatments this week and I wanted to share in Part One what my carefully laid out preparation process is for of each treatment.

First there are Mother's Little Helpers.
Better known as Xanax, these help me relax as they put on my Friday the 13th Jason mask (be sure to look for this in Part 2), strap me in and zap my brain.
One of these babies and I practically watch the procedure ou…


Debbie got braces.

This might be old news for those of you that have seen her recently. Then again .... maybe you haven't noticed. She actually hides it well. When she talks, she keeps her upper lip lower down over her teeth and sounds kinda like the Godfather with a speech impediment.

Other than that ... she sounds perfect.

Debbie also carries a small portable toothbrush with her for dental emergencies ... like after a big dinner of ribs and barbeque beans.  It's a cute little white one.

And she keeps a bag of wax handy. You never know when repairs might be necessary ... at a moment's notice.

I love this new look. It's like going through adolescence all over again.  I never had braces ... so I am fascinated by the dynamics.

I'm actually considering them myself .. maybe for Halloween.

Conversations with Sammy

Sam called yesterday.

I missed the call but called him right back and left a message. It's fruitless to leave messages because he doesn't listen to them ... but I still leave them. He sits in the same place every day in front of his TV with the giant headphones on and only takes them off for the few precious seconds he uses his phone.

We finally connected.

"Sammy!" I said as he answered the phone.

There was silence.


"What did you say?"

"I said Sammy ... hello Sammy."



"Did you call me Charlie?"

"No ... I said Sammy."

"Who's Charlie?"

"I said SAMMY?"


"NO ... SAMMY."

"Oh ... listen ... I wanted to tell you how sorry I was about the South Florida game (we lost yesterday to Cincinnati) and not be down about it."

"Thanks Dad ... it was a tough loss ..."

"How about LSU, huh? Are they great?"


England Swings

Just getting over jet lag ... and it's been a week since we've been back. By the way .... here are some additional thoughts about our London trip.

The British Music Experience was a very cool place to visit. Located in a "big bubble" at the Greenwich UTube stop, this was not a typical museum.

The venue ... by the way ... was also a big concert arena (Katy Perry was appearing that night so there were hundreds of girls hanging around dressed like cotton candy and kewpie dolls).

Walking through the corridors was a real experience itself.

We passed open air booths that you could make your own music videos, dance videos and newscaster videos.

A group of the most unlikely looking Supreme wanna-bes were dancing to a karaoke version of "Stop In the Name of Love". A teenager was doing her best impression of Jane Pauley. And some guy with a lot of chains was just making faces at himself on the screen. (I take that back ... I think he was robbing an ATM machine).

Big d…

Has Anyone Seen the Queen?

That's the question my middle daughter Alissa kept asking strangers on the street when we took her and her brother, Josh to England about 7 years ago. She had this horrible fake British accent ... and was also a little trashed after sipping on champagne New Year's Eve.

That's the last time Debbie and I were in London ... until yesterday.

We are here and having a ball ... no kids ... just us ... and most of the administrative team at USF. It's part work and part holiday.

Last night was mostly work (if you call it that) ... we had a special VIP reception at the British Foreign Office. Cool place ... That's where I took this shot of Cornwallis overlooking the huge lobby area.

We had dinner with one of our famous alums, David Mearns. David is the most prolific shipwreck explorer in the world. He had great stories of finding lost ships... more than 25 of them to date. The Australian government awarded him a special honor for uncovering a ship that was sunk more than 50 y…

If I Only Knew Then What I "Think" I Know Now

Here's a fun exercise.

Think back through the decades about some of the bonehead mistakes you've made. If you knew where you'd wind up ... would you have changed your mind? One of the problems with this exercise (if you're old like me) is you start forgetting the good, the bad and the ugly. Of course, depending how bad and ugly ... it could be a good thing.

Bonehead mistake #1: In college ... I dropped out of Architecture and changed my major to Art. Why? Because I was lazy and didn't want to do what it took to get that degree. Plus ... I had more important things to do like drink and play. I wound up graduating a year late with a degree in graphic design from UGA. For those of you who grew up in the computer age ... this wasn't. T- squares, rapidiograph pens, balsa wood and drawing boards were used to actually create stuff. What did I do with that degree? After a few years in advertising ... I tucked it away with my other college memorabilia.

Bonehead mistake #2…

Our First Apartment

We got an apartment!

Okay ... sure we've got a beautiful house which we've worked on for 13 years in St. Pete ... AND it's about 4 times bigger than the apartment ... AND we'll probably use the apartment only a few times a month ... but ... it's now OURS. (well ... at least for the term of the rental agreement)

That's the beauty ... We can give it back.

You see ... we wanted a place halfway between USF and St. Pete. It takes me about 45 minutes to drive to work (and that's without rush hour traffic). The drive home is worse ... plus ... there are those evening events ... So that's why we are excited.

Let me back up a few days. WE WERE EXCITED until we stayed there this week.

We went to a concert at the SP Times Arena  ... The Steve Miller Band (which was great by the way ... even though Steve is 172 years old.) So we thought it would be cool to stay at the apartment, walk to the concert .. which is right across the water from the Arena ... and I could e…

Pop Night Funnies

Last night was the return of ... Pop Night.

Never heard of it? Well ... you probably haven't been to one of DJ (Doctor) Steve-o's infamous dinner parties.

Here's the set-up: He and wife Colleen host and  invite four other couples to secretly share something no one knows about you while the rest of the dinner party tries to guess. Music fills the condo, great wine is poured and all are treated to a fantastic dinner. Music choices are picked by the guests and prerecorded on Stevie's sound system.

Last night, guests included a bank president, a former major league baseball player and a medical equipment manufacturer. A bowl filled with folded papers that held our big secrets was passed around.

The first was picked and read aloud: "This guest swiped a pair of shades from his brother and sold them for $60."

The first couple questioned some guests and finally came to a conclusion ... "Joel ... I think it's you."
"Nope ..." I said The real su…