Monday, July 31, 2006

A night at the Park

I could, and probably will at another time, wax poetic about baseball and sports in general but I'm reserving this post for the magic that is Fenway Park.

I'm a life long Sox fan. Never obsessively so. I don't score the games and remember plays from years past, well, with the exception of Billy Buck's unforgettable move in '86, the on the mound conference between Pedro and Grady, the underhand toss to end the series...those are burned into my head. But I do love those guys, love to watch them play - listen to them talk baseball - love the fan stories - the whole atmosphere. In New England you only have to say "How 'bout them Sox?" and you're likely to get someone who will be happy to commiserate with you. Partly because no matter how well they play you're always waiting for the other shoe to drop. Bats are hitting? Well then, the middle relief pitchers are stinking. (See last night's game, ehem.) It's the way of the Sox. And one good win or Ortiz walkoff homer has us coming down with a case of pennant fevah. It's a roller coaster ride.

Seeing a game at Fenway is a experience reserved for a lucky 35,000 or so. Ticket prices were wild for a time, but seem to have calmed so I thought this would be the year to take the boy. He's nine, likely to remember it, so I clicked up Ebay and bid away.

I'm so glad I did.

Arriving three hours before game time has it's advantages. We waited in line to make a donation to the Boston Food Bank in exchange for some autographed photos and then figured we'd get to take in batting practice. The boy was chomping at the bit to get inside the park. I have to say, I didn't think the boy would get it. I really didn't.

But one other Red Sox moment I'm making sure I never forget? The look on his face as he ran up the concrete ramp in the concourse and turned the corner. His first glimpse at the park, in the perfect afternoon light. It literally stopped him in his tracks.

Jered Weaver, a rookie pitcher for the Angels threw him a ball during batting practice. It doesn't get much better than that. Well, okay, maybe it does. I'm sure if he had a choice it would've been given to him by David Ortiz but really? He's barely put the thing down since.

We hung around the visitor's dugout for awhile, kids hollering for an autograph. No one had any luck but the kids were all talking baseball and comparing stuff - baseball cards and past autograph success. Like little men, more than one of these boys congratulated my guy on his first ball game and wished him good times. Instant comeraderie.

He recommends the Fenway Franks.

Note from me: Do NOT buy them in the grocery store and think you're getting the real deal. Blech.

It was a beautiful night for a game.

The Pesky Pole.

Timlin and Mirabelli in the bullpen. I didn't get a picture of the tomato plants. Yep. Tomato plants in the bullpen. It's Fenway.

Now, I wouldn't want you thinking that everyone there stands in awe. So totally untrue. There are dutiful wives, one that I happened to chat with admitted that she generally FALLS ASLEEP at the games. She had third row seats next to the dugout. I told her there was a cozy spot out in right field for her if she'd like to trade. Her husband laughed, she looked like she might've taken me up on it. Couldn't hurt to offer, right?

There's also alot of beer flowing. More than I, foolishly, expected. There was alot of stumbling and a few almost fights but meh, there's idiots everywhere.

Speaking of idiots...yes, that IS me singing. How can you not? I just don't get it.
Link to idiocy: click here.

The Sox ended up losing, but we didn't even talk about if the score was an afterthought. And really it was.

What a day at the Park. Wicked great.

Until I return with photos I'll leave you with a few observations:

1. Men. No matter how muscley you THINK you are....don't drive your jeep while shirtless.

2. Ladies. You're at the ballpark. In the city. One of the oldest ballparks in the oldest cities, where even the dirt dates back to Babe Ruth. Um, what posesses so many of you to wear skimpy flip flops or those wedge sandals where your feet have slid halfway out the front of the sandals and your toes are all hanging over the front edge...touching the ground or getting stepped on by scores of drunkards?

3. Cell phone users. Great, you've made it to Fenway. Now do me a favor and don't call everyone you know to tell them, "Dude. I've got bitches and beers. I'm set. They're all over me." I'm assuming he meant the beers because he had no bitches. Just an empty seat between him and his friend. Heh. Really though, shut off the damn phones.

Off to work...see you later...

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Hey Look - I'm Posting

So, it's been awhile. At least it feels like awhile to me, especially because y'all are kind enough to update just about every day and I'm clocking in at three times a week over here.

This week was all party preparation.

Today is all Fenway Park.


If you're not busy around 8:05 p.m. - flip on ESPN and look for us.

We're sitting next to the Angels bullpen in right field with a sign that says "Hit One Here PAPI" :)

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


A checklist, from LeeMarie:

Put an "X" by all the things you've done, or remove the "X" from the ones you have not

( ) Smoked a cigarette - I've only ever taken one puff - no inhaling. I'm not counting it.
(x) Drank so much you threw up
( ) Crashed a friend's car
(x) Stolen a car - well, it wasn't so much stolen as it was borrowed without permission. Before we had actual driver's licenses.
(x) Been in love
(x) In love now
(x) Been dumped
(x) Been laid off/fired (Fired. And thank GOD)
(x) Quit your job
( ) Been in a fist fight
(x) Snuck out of your parent's house
(x) Had feelings for someone who didn't have them back
( ) Been arrested
( ) Gone on a blind date
(x) Lied to a friend
(x) Skipped school
( ) Seen someone die
( ) Been to Canada
(x) Been to Mexico - (see question two)
(x) Been on a plane
(x) Been lost (I'm sure I have been, but I can't remember it)
(x) On the opposite side of the country
(x) Gone to Washington, DC
(x) Swam in the ocean
(x) Felt like dying (gotta love teenage angst)
(x) Cried yourself to sleep (again with the angst)
(x) Played cops and robbers
(x) Recently colored with crayons
( ) Sang karaoke
( ) Paid for a meal with only coins (there WAS recently a coin counting stop for some sour cream, though)
(x) Done something you told yourself you wouldn't
(x) Made prank phone calls
(x) Laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose.......
(x) Caught a snowflake on your tongue (every winter - the big ones are best)
(x) Danced in the rain
(x) Written a letter to Santa Claus (my mom saved them all - I love her for that)
(x) Been kissed under the mistletoe
(x) Watched the sun rise with someone you care about
(x) Blown bubbles
(x) Made a bonfire on the beach
(x) Crashed a party - (we joined another wedding reception after leaving an entirely different post wedding reception afterparty and we were totally welcomed, sheesh, that was a good night)
(x) Gone roller-skating (not for a long time because I like the next one better)
(x) Ice-skating

Details ~

Any nicknames? Jenn, Jenny
Mother's name? Brenda
Father's name? David
Any siblings? A stepsister
What is your favorite drink? Diet Coke
Body piercing? Ears count. Right?
How much do you love your job? More than I'd expect
A Favorite vacation spot? Oceanside or Lakefront
Ever been to Africa? No.
Ever steal any traffic signs? No, but there's one in town that I want.
Ever been in a car accident? Yep.
2 Doors or 4 Doors? Four
Favorite pie? Lemon Meringue
Favorite number? 2
Favorite movie? Wow, there isn't just one. I loved Kill Bill, Finding Neverland and City of God and I could write an entire list here so I'll stop.
Favorite holiday? Christmas
Favorite food? Boiled Lobster and Corn on the Cob
Favorite day of the week? Saturday.
Favorite brand of body soap? I use Sundrop Soaps (they're from a local girl who makes her own)
Favorite Show? Tie. Deadwood and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
What do you do to relax? Read, watch a good movie, a swim in the lake works wonders too
What do you enjoy receiving? Good Old Fashioned Mail. Email's aren't too bad either.
Farthest place this message will reach? Um, one of those Next Blog clickers...
Message to your friends reading this? hi.
How do you see yourself in 10 years? Getting my son ready to go back to college and telling my daughter why she's grounded. Again.
What time is it now? 11:15 p.m.

Sunday, July 23, 2006


So, the Sox were on at ten p.m. Friday night.

I made a fair attempt. Cracked open an icy cold caffinated beverage around 10:05...
Why does caffiene only work sometimes?
I watched more than half of the game only to be woken up by the air conditioner turning on.

And Jerry Remy saying "...if you fell asleep on the couch tonight you didn't miss much..."

Well, alrighty then.

My boy is still into raptory type birds. Hawks, eagles and such. He wants to start a bird watching club, called *drumroll please* Eagle Eyes. Witty, no? He also wants me to drive him around for the sole purpose of trying to spot hawks or kestrels or whatever. I nixed the special trips to see birds and told him just to keep his eyes peeled on the way to the grocery store.

I've taken picture after picture and my memory card is finally full. Now if only I could find the camera. It's probably with the DVD remote that I've been missing for two weeks...under the couch, behind the chess set or something, whooping it up and choking on dust bunnies.

Friday, July 21, 2006

The husband has decided that because last year's hockey cookout was a success that we should do it all again.

Superb idea.

He wants a bash. Lotsa people, food and drinks. I want fewer people and food but lotsa drinks. I think he invited half of his hockey team the other night so it looks like I'm losing this one. And it's next weekend. Eight days.

But. The first batch of limoncello will be ready in six more days, so that's a plus.

On the bright side, the really, really, really bright side...I just got two Red Sox tickets for the day after the cookout. I am beside myself. And I didn't even have to sell a kidney or my first born. WOOHOO I. Am. Going. To. Fenway!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Although, these days I would just about GIVE my first born away to gypsies or the carnival if they needed someone who would pester them endlessly and pick fights with any little girls that are, say, around five years old and totally minding their own business. Any takers?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Best laid plans

So, I was thinking of heading up to York, Maine or something for the next day or two. Just an overnight trip, to a beachy town. I planned on lots of sand, sun and maybe some ice cream. Tomorrow looks perfect for such an outing. Friday? Not so much.

And apparently, hanging around outside around dusk is ill advised too. This town is fairly close by. Okay, really close by. From what I read, this type of skeeter prefers birds to humans. Super. I wish I knew that before I filled my FIVE birdfeeders.

Going into town? Yeah, not a great idea either.

Monday, July 17, 2006

A decision has been made.

Summer is for enjoyin'.

Nothing is getting accomplished on the weekends lately. Nothing. No laundry, no lawn mowing, no nuthin'.

We spent yesterday baking in the sahara of our friends treeless backyard. Holy moly it felt like we were cooking in the sun under a giant magnifying glass. But it only felt like that when you were out of the pool.

You know the heat is unbearable when you WANT to share a pool with 25 shrieking kids.

I was perusing the internet for limoncello recipes because...well, yum...when I noticed that a good recipe will take a MONTH to steep. Um, cable internet is too slow for me...a month for a drink? I will start it tomorrow. There's also a week long recipe, starting that tomorrow too. Right after I buy a lemon zester. And two giant bottles of vodka.

Scenes from this weekend:

My son: on the roof outside his window because someone threw a tube on the roof and then, in order to get it down, he threw his basketball on the roof. And then he just HAD to get them both.

My daughter: sitting and talking on the trampoline and running and swimming for hours with her best friend. That she won't admit is her best friend, because he's a boy.

Me: blissfully unaware of our friend M. sneaking up and then knocking me into the pool because I blindsided a him with a squirt gun mere moments before.

Husband: Sunburned. Has been nicknamed Bernie. As in Burnie. Who is out in the sun, cringing with every move, today at work.

Scenes from today:

Airconditioning, a movie, popcorn on the couch, a few lectures on decision making (no roof, use sunblock), work, camp, swimming, dinner, swimming.

Friday, July 14, 2006

A Big Pile O'Books

So yesterday I mentioned a little Borders craziness that overcame me this week. Sadly it's a recurring condition. I thought I was in remission but that damn "sale" caused a relapse.

These aren't all from one outing, my husband would cut up my driver's license and stop giving me gas money if they were.

Assination Vacation by Sarah Vowell - I heard the Partly Cloudy Patriot was a good read, but that wasn't on the list.

Pirate Hunter - The True Story of Captain Kidd by Richard Zacks - This has taken me FOREVER to read but it's good. Surprisingy good. And about Pirates. Plus I've put it down for two weeks to read other things and picked it back up and was still interested, so that's something.

Sex Lives of Cannibals by Maarten Troost - someone (bb?) recommended this and I figured, a travel book in summer? Absolutely.

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro - heard it was good, remains to be seen.

Faithful by Stephen King & Stewart O'Nan - Red Sox. 'Nuff said. Well, maybe not 'nuff... I consistently pick up the Surviving Grady book and read a week or so's worth of entries, especially when the sox are losing. It's all about keeping the faith. And laughing.

The Final Solution by Michael Chabon - I just finished Kavalier and Clay. And totally Loved. It. And now I want to devour everything he's written. yumm.

The Great Influenza by Jim Barry - love a good pandemic. A girl I know is gearing up for the bird flu. Seriously. She deserves her own post. Notice a said 'A girl I know' and not 'A friend of mine'. Big Difference.

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy - India. Sounds v. good, will probably wait until winter.

Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk - totally horrified by the first 'story'. In a can't look away sort of way (Consider it a warning). But I did look away and picked up Kavalier and Clay in the process. I'm on the fence about Palahniuk, this book is his last chance.

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke - The only one NOT from Borders. A winter read, for sure. Too heavy for the beach bag.

Oh, and because I'm a glutton for punishment I picked up Vanishing Acts by Jodi Picoult at the library yesterday. Her endings are a little too tidy in my opinion but she always tells a good story. Well, maybe not ALWAYS but mostly.

So. All the moms are going crazy, eh? At least I'm in good company.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

I find myself needing, or maybe just wanting so badly I can't differentiate, a break. There was a shoving match yesterday morning. Over a donut. Who needs an alarm clock when you've got your kids hollering "But that powdered one is miiiiiiiiine"?

The tv is on hiatus for awhile and the girlie went to bed a half hour early tonight after another blowout because I wouldn't make popcorn RIGHT FUCKING NOW. Well, she didn't actually use the F - word. At least not then anyway. And her brother, he somehow stepped up to the big brother plate and calmed her down and read her a book and they camped out together in her room and all was well.

They're so cute I could just gobble them up. Until I remember that it's supposed to be hot and rainy today and they're awake for at least 14 hours a day and that's alot of 'what can we do now?' time.

I gingerly hinted around about the kids wanting to go to Maine, for some, ehem, quality time with dad, but it's supposed to be ninety degrees this weekend and that's just plain mean when there's a clear cool lake not 100 feet away from our regular house.

The boy had an idea: we're now on a quest to try some new types of foods this summer. Even if it's something we've had before like Mexican or Chinese it's our duty to order something that we'd never normally eat. Last week was Thai, this week Mexican. The son thinks he's brave and then hates most everything new. The girlie, on the other hand, doesn't want to try anything and then does...and loves it.

I went a little book crazy at Borders the other day. I'm totally blaming their buy three get one free ploy. But I bought three and could've easily bought more. Now I've got a STACK of books to read - maybe I'll drop the Maine hint just one more time...

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

I like living in a small town, but really...

So, last night after a meeting, one of the selectmen invites me out for a drink. And a hour or two of town politics gossip. The selectman in question is a woman, so don't be getting any ideas. Anyway...

Both of the bars in town? Closed. One for repairs and one was just - closed. Huh?

It would've been good gossip too because she frequently swears me to secrecy and then drops bombshells all the time in the office. Bombshells being small town politics at their finest. This person is a secret business partner of this person, so and so is taking the town to court, this guy- his wife? - she used to run a phone sex line...stuff like this.

And last night the bars were closed. I told her that, clearly, being a selectman means NOTHING if she cannot make the folks at the chinese food restaurant open their bar for just two or three drinks.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Two things about the HomeRun Derby:

1. The announcers on ESPN make me thankful for the team of Remy & Orsillo. How can a network, one that is totally devoted to sports, do no better than Chris Berman?

2. How clean is the Allegheny River?

For Cat:

The boy had his nine year checkup today...he's all elbows and shoulder blades and ribs. The official medical term I think is "skin and bones".

He's gained twenty pounds since he was five. So, in keeping with that math I told him he'd be weighing in at a whopping 75 pounds when he turns 13. And he'd be *this* close to getting out of his booster seat. I also told him that they'd let him keep it in the hall during his driver's ed classes. And that he should date a skinny girl and they could have a matching set.

And yes. He still sits in a booster seat...the kid is as light as a feather and on the short side. He complained about it earlier in the week (and weirdly this is only like, the second or third time he's really said anything) so I gave him the ole "just because your friends parents don't use them doesn't make it a good decision" lecture. I told him we'd try fattening him up and no matter what he could lose the seat when he turns ten. TEN. He was totally okay with that. My little weirdo.

Monday, July 10, 2006


A trip to a never before visited zoo, near Boston, on a hot summer day....not recommended.

A cookout, with pina coladas and lots of other things that I can't recall because of the pina coladas...highly recommended.

I'm worried just how NONagressive of a driver I've become...I used to be able to drive in and out of Boston without a care in the world. During rush hour, middle of the night, blindfolded. Kidding about the blindfold, just seeing if you were paying attention.

Friday, on the way to the zoo I'm following the vague directions from the zoo website, which I didn't realize were vague until I was in the midst of six lanes of 50 mile an hour traffic, with jersey barriers and such. I'm basically just driving, fully believing I had missed the turn about a mile beforehand but figuring I'd have a chance to work it all out. I see a sign, a sign that filled me with more panic than glee.

Entering Boston

it said. Wha???? What part of Boston looks like THIS?? Where's the Prudential building? The Hancock Tower?

I don't get lost all that easily, somehow, without a lick of common sense I seem to have a fairly decent sense of direction. So, while the heart was hammering madly, because I knew I was south west of town, I was thinking Fenway Park must be right around the next corner. Because the sign said Boston it must mean Boston. And if you've ever been to Beantown you know that if it's not trafficky you can drive through downtown in about ten minutes. It's tiny. Anyways...

My irrational thoughts seem to fly fast and furious, the rational side takes it's sweet time catching up. We get to a stop light, I catch my breath. I look across the street, hey whaddya know, it's the road I'm supposed to find...a full mile before I'm supposed to find it. I look to the right, another sign that says West Roxbury with City of Boston in teeny letters just below. Phew, a suburb.

We make it the rest of the way with little problem (although my kids did cry foul when I missed my exit off the rotary and went around again because the sign was in the wrong place - Hey welcome to Boston, good luck finding your way around, we certainly won't be helping you out - is what the signs should read). My kids love zoos. Love them. I can think of 42,258 places I'd rather be but I let the girlie pick and the zoo it was.

I have pictures. In my camera. It was hot, really hot. I know that lions and tigers and such live in the sahara but for the love of god can they not charge me $3.00 for a bottle of water? The kids were wilting and we hit a big glut of rush hour traffic on the ride home, but they claimed to have loved it. oh-kay.

Saturday we had some friends over for a cookout, that's where the mixed drinks came in. My, we're all so funny after drinking for four hours. Just ask us...we'll tell you :)
The dads were in pink inner tubes in the middle of the lake, the moms playing it safe on the shore. Many jokes were made about the magic bullet blender I borrowed from my neighbor but there was little complaint after the first round of icy drinks.

We may have horrified the one sober person in attendance.

Today, I'm off to Borders for a 4th grade reading list book, Target for a birthday present and Petco to check out the guinea pigs. And then the kids are going to camp and I'm going to work. Ahhh, work. Sometimes it's better than a day off.

Friday, July 07, 2006

The post where I use cut & paste quite liberally OR why May 21st is awesome

I saw this at Jennifer's and then again at Lisa's...


1. Go to Wikipedia.
2. In the Search box, type your birth month and day (but not year).
3. List three events that happened on your birthday.
4. List two important birthdays and one interesting death.
5. One holiday or observance (if any).

1932 - Amelia Earhart, because of bad weather, lands in a pasture in Derry, Northern Ireland, becoming the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.

1980 - Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back opens in theaters.

2006 - The Swedish ice hockey team Tre Kronor takes gold in the World Championship and becomes the first nation to take gold in both the World Championship and Olympic games in ice hockey.

1898 - Armand Hammer, American physician, entrepreneur, oil magnate, and art collector (d. 1990)
1952 - Mr. T, (Birth Name Laurence Tureaud) American actor

1542 - Hernando de Soto, Spanish explorer

Dia de la Afrocolombianidad marks the abolition of slavery in Colombia.

Tag! You're it...

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Forgive me Blogger...

My gawd. It's been A WEEK? A week since I've posted? Whoops.

It's the popcorn popping, after dinner swimming, red sox watching, mojito drinking, wedding attending, firework enjoying, book reading. I'm blaming it on the fun.

Oh, and this show? Funniest damn show on TV right now. Well, not RIGHT now...unless it's, like, 10:00 p.m. on Thursday, but you get the idea.

We went to my husband's cousin's wedding on Saturday and guess what? An honest to goodness Bridezilla was there. She was very, very, um..particular... during the planning. And her family, I guess they'd be referred to as inlawzillas. The husband's aunt and uncle hosted the affair in their yard, working for hours and hours to plan and prepare the yard, food, seating, tents, bar, cooking area, dance floor, arbor...basically the whole thing was their doing. And it was beeyouteeful. Their yard was transformed. The bride's family? Hung fabric from the tent poles. End of tasks.

The bride, not much of a smiler. She looked essentially annoyed for a good portion of the day so I found it funny to watch her stomp around after someone accidentally broke a candle holder during the limbo contest. Literally...she stomped. *grin*

There were a few pool parties this the friends with pools, one friend was even thoughtful enough to live within walking distance to a fireworks display, nice of them, eh? We thought so.

The kids are making their way through summer vacation by the skin of their teeth. As in...they are lucky they haven't found themselves locked in the cellar for a day or two. All was great up until about two days ago and it has steadily spiraled downwards. This morning's gem? "Why would I want to eat the crap you cook, anyway?". Nice, huh? All because of a fit -no, A FIT - he threw last night while looking at his summer reading list, he was grounded and he had just remembered this morning that he couldn't use the computer or gamecube for two days. So, after scraping his french toast and bacon into the trash I have decided to spend the day at home, working on our behavior. Or THEIR behavior, because I? don't need so much help.