Sunday, April 28, 2013

It's A BOY

This is a picture of my new GRANDSON!

He's in there ... I know because Nikki sent me proof. The pressure is on now. For her? No ... all she has to do is throw up for a few months, carry around about 20 extra pounds(I've done much more for years) and then ... what ... birth the baby and name him and raise him?

Piece of cake.

I have the hard job. I have to figure out what I want to be called. Now THAT is stressful. Should I be Papa (like Bob)? Grampy (like Sam)? Paw (like Brother in law Tom)?

Maybe I'll try a different name out every month while the kid is too little to know the difference: Hmmm ... maybe Kingfish (Mikey calls me that) ... or Mardi Gras Mom-bo (nickname from high school) ... or Jo-EL (Keli's fav) ... or Mumboig(Coach Reeechahd called me that) ...  

You have any ideas of cool grandfather names ... I'd love to know what your favs are. SEND THEM.

Nikki told me not to stress over this. As it turns out ... The baby decides. Can you believe that? He will start to call me something regardless of what I want.

Speaking of names ... I wonder what Nik and Steven are gonna name him. Based on the baby's first picture (at left) I might recommend "Johnson".

What's that you say? It's his fist?

Oh well ... Rocky has a nice ring. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Just got back from the Rays/Yankees game. Rays won 3-0 ... it was one we really needed.

Love it.

Ahhh ... baseball ... the sound of the crowds, the smell of beer and hot dogs, the youngsters clamoring for a chance to catch a baseball between innings, old guys with jerseys, young girls with "pieces of" jerseys and the vendors ... The VENDORS singing ... "ICE CREAM ... CAHHHHVELLL ICE CREAM"  ... or ...
"DEHYDRATION ... JUST SAY NO" ... or ...


But the times they are achangin'. The newest vendors are selling WINE. Yes that's right ... now you can get wine in a plastic wine glass with a cover. Vendors are still learning how to sell it (and pronounce it):


And who doesn't just love the Pepsi race.

Will Pepsi win? Sierra Mist? Diet Pepsi? The tension, the thrill of victory, the agony of defeat, the cheerleaders jumping around, Raymond interfering with the runners.

It's almost as exciting as the cap shuffle or the old redneck with the long grey beard who dances in the stands (it never fails that someone squeals and looks around for him even though he is obviously on videotape).

A fan favorite is the groundskeeper who dances in the outfield with the little guy.

... and then picks him up and carries him off.


Sunday, April 14, 2013

Lookin GOOD Sister

This is my sister in law Kelli.

She loves to be mentioned in my blog so I thought I'd give her space today. Remember Kelli? She's the one who still thinks Easter bunnies come from eggs ... and Jewish people speak yittan ... and is still into heavy competition party games like scoop the M&Ms into a bowl with your teeth and a spoon (someone else always counts the total M&Ms).

Well .. we are very proud of sister Kelli.

Last week, Kelli and the other founders of a special organization, LiFT Academy were honored as Community Heroes by the Tampa Bay Lightning .. which came with a check for $50,000. LiFT is a school for special needs children run by teachers who have forfeited salaries to make sure that their children have the best education at the highest standards.

Congrats Sis ... take another bite ... you deserve it.   

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Try this on for size

Went shopping today for a suit.

Debbie went with me. She doesn't trust me to shop by myself because :

1. I hate to shop.

2. I hate salespeople who hover so I tell them to go away and wind up not finding anything myself.

3. She wants to see it first because she says I have no taste.

I'm a terrible shopper. Plus ...I've put on weight. And I refuse to think that I wear anything larger than 32 slim. (last time I was 32 slim, was after Kennedy got shot). But ... I knew it was time. Debbie comments every day about the holes in my pants and my shoes. I think it makes her angrier that I wear them until the holes are large enough that you can just about see my butt. Staples and clips will only do so much.

So off we go to Jos. Banks.

Our shopping trip started off on the wrong foot when ... as I put a hand on a suit ... the salesman swooped in and said, "Need help finding a size?"

"No thanks this is what I wanted ..."

"Let me help you." He grabbed it out of my hand and started to put it on me.

"I can do it myself ..."

He put it on me anyway and said, "Nope ... this won't do ... too tight around the middle."

"I kinda liked the fit ..."

"Here..." he said without missing a beat. he put on a coat that looked like I needed another person with me to fill it out.

"This is huge," I said.

"Yes .... but not in the stomach". He directed me over to another rack where he pulled out a coat that was the size of the first one I tried on. "These are more for someone like you. They are called our PORTLY coats."

PORTLY COATS? Did you know there were coats for men that were portly? Reminded of my brother wearing HUSKIES ... remember them? I used to laugh at him. Paybacks are hell.

"No thanks." I said to the salesman. "I'll just buy a glue gun and keep my old stuff."

Debbie just rolled her eyes and sighed. 

All Thumbs

Thinking about Roger Ebert this morning.

His death this week ended an era that I don't think we will see again ... The film critic as a true personality who had well thought out comments (my apologies to the other critics out there) and one you really paid attention to. Siskel left a hole and Ebert left a void. Movie critiques these days seem to only show up on Fandango or Flixter as: "56% of critics liked it".

I've always been a real movie buff. Deb and I try to see a movie a week at the theaters ... although lately it's more like a move every couple of months.

I take it for granted that everyone loves the movies ... sometimes I assume when I shouldn't.

This was evident the other day at The Outstanding Employee Awards program at USF in our beautiful new concert facility. The Senior Vice Presidents took turns behind the podium to present awards to their staffs. Everything was carefully scripted and no one veered off course (until it was my turn). The sound guy apparently thought it would be cool to turn on the rear speakers (which must have had a delay) causing there to be a bad echo ... as if you were in a stadium.

I joked with the CFO about the echo and told him I might crack on the sound guy (in fun) when I got up there. He laughed and encouraged me to do it ... but then again, I think he likes when I make a fool of myself, too.

When it was my turn I looked at the audience and said ... "Standing here this afternoon ... hearing my voice echo back to me makes me feel like I'm in that Lou Gehrig movie, remember?"

No one laughed

"You know where Lou Gehrig gave his speech at Yankee Stadium ..."

Still nothing.

"TODAY, today, today I feel like the LUCKIEST, luckiest, luckiest ..."

Three people chuckled.

"Hmmm ... I must have lost everyone older than 50 out there."

Two more chuckles.

It was then I had a vision of Roger Ebert giving me a BIG thumbs down.

Ballad of the Big Prostate

Here’s a little country tune I wrote just yesterday to commemorate a dark day in my history. I don’t have a tune but realized you can use an...