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Friday, November 30, 2012

Lines in the Sand

Why is this day different than all the others days.  Why is this night different from all other nights? Oh wait, its not Passover,  aka Pesach.

Basically today was the same old routine.  Work, school, dinner, some TV.....very typical.  However, in 1947, this day was not like all the other days.

This day in history "
1947 U.N. votes for partition of PalestineDespite strong Arab opposition, the United Nations votes for the partition of Palestine and the creation of an independent Jewish state.

The modern conflict between Jews and Arabs in Palestine dates back to the 1910's, when both groups laid claim to the British-controlled territory. The Jews were Zionists, recent emigrants from Europe and Russia who came to the ancient homeland of the Jews to establish a Jewish national state. The native Palestinian Arabs sought to stem Jewish immigration and set up a secular Palestinian state."

While I am not religious, and not particularly political, it has been, and probably always will be a part of our lives, living in America, and hearing about the trouble, and unrest in the middle east.  Can't we all just get along.

If a common heritage conferred peace, then perhaps the long history of conflict in the Middle East would have been resolved years ago. For, according to a new scientific study, Jews are the genetic brothers of Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese, and they all share a common genetic lineage that stretches back thousands of years.

"Jews and Arabs are all really children of Abraham," says Harry Ostrer, M.D., Director of the Human Genetics Program at New York University School of Medicine, an author of the new study by an international team of researchers in the United States, Europe, and Israel. "And all have preserved their Middle Eastern genetic roots over 4,000 years," he says.
The researchers analyzed the Y chromosome, which is usually passed unchanged from father to son, of more than 1,000 men worldwide. Throughout human history, alterations have occurred in the sequence of chemical bases that make up the DNA in this so-called male chromosome, leaving variations that can be pinpointed with modern genetic techniques. Related populations carry the same specific variations. In this way, scientists can track descendants of large populations and determine their common ancestors.
Specific regions of the Y chromosome were analyzed in 1,371 men from 29 worldwide populations, including Jews and non-Jews from the Middle East, North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa, and Europe.
The study, published in the May 9 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that Jewish men shared a common set of genetic signatures with non-Jews from the Middle East, including Palestinians, Syrians, and Lebanese, and these signatures diverged significantly from non-Jewish men outside of this region. Consequently, Jews and Arabs share a common ancestor and are more closely related to one another than to non-Jews from other areas of the world.

Dinner was Lombardi's pizza and mussels marinara.  Great !  I sent an email to the CSA to make some suggestions for next year.  basically, a scale, a swap table or bin, and pint/quart containers for some of the fruits, etc.  I already miss not getting my fresh fruits and veggies every Wed.

Keeping my running to a minimum and getting better each day, so not going to push it.

Photo of the day "Lines in the Sand"

Magic Number 132

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Proud Day - Luke Confirmation and Kyle Honor Society

So, where do I start.  Made sense to work from home with the busy schedule today.  Early meetings, doctor appointments, Confirmation, National Honor Society....

Amazingly, I made it to Physical Therapy and got thru the challenges at work.

Sue had a great idea to pick up Sushi for lunch for when Uncle Brian (Luke's Sponsor) got to the house ahead of us going to Good Shepard.

This day in history "After sailing through the dangerous straits below South America that now bear his name, Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan enters the Pacific Ocean with three ships, becoming the first European explorer to reach the Pacific from the Atlantic."

We did not need navigational help today and everything was 'smooth sailing' so to say.

The church is packed rafter to rafter as the Bishop starts the Confirmation proceedings.  A young energetic and very amusing Bishop, who was most gracious to everyone, especially the catechists, and the young men and women about to receive confirmation.

Sue can now say that she is an officially retired catechist, who after 14 years of service has taught our three boys and a large collection of their friends how to be good citizens and good Christians   I have learned a thing or two over the years as I am typically home while she is teaching.

A proud moment as Luke is anointed with Holy Chrism, a very fragrant special oil only used during special rites of passage.  After the ceremony and right before having to leave to take Kyle to his induction ceremony at the High School for National Honor Society, I give Luke a hug and kiss.  The fragrance emanating from his forehead will mark the occasion indelibly in my senses.

Holy Chrism is the oil used to anoint people at their Confirmation, and is also used to anoint priests at their ordination. It is also used in the consecration of altars and Church buildings. In Anglo-Catholic parishes it is additionally used by bishops when they consecrate chalices and patens. 'Consecration' means making holy or setting apart for God's purposes. It differs from the other two oils in that it alone is not pure olive oil. A scented balsam is mixed with the oil to make the Chrism.

A get Kyle to Sachem East HS right on time (6pm), and then scoot over to a local Starbucks for a pumpkin latte.  Back a the school, I grab three seats so that Luke and Sue won't have to struggle to find a place to sit during the induction.

A very nice National Honor Society induction, and a time for us as parents to be proud.  Kyle has had a great academic career so far, and his extra volunteer work has given him the edge and ability to be honored tonight along with a small subset of his friends and peers.

It is late by the time we get home, so I heat up some frozen snacks for dinner as we watch Survivor.

Photo of the day "Proud Day"

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Crab Stuffed Mushrooms

Since I have been boring most of you with this blog for the past year, I realized that it was supposed to include recipes.  While most of you know what I have been eating or cooking, it was time I shared.

This afternoon while eating lunch, I called SiriusXM service to tell them they are too expensive and that we will not be renewing.  Once again, the squeaky wheel gets the grease.  Seems there is a customer retention deal that they can offer me.  $47 for 6 months as opposed to $15+/month.  You do the math if you's a half price sale.    KaChing !

Dinner tonight was a simple shrimp scampi with farfalle pasta and peas.

No recipe provided.

This day in history "Guitar legend Jimi Hendrix is born in Seattle. Hendrix grew up playing guitar, imitating blues greats like Muddy Waters as well as early rockers. He joined the army in 1959 and became a paratrooper but was honorably discharged in 1961 after an injury that exempted him from duty in Vietnam. In the early 1960s, Hendrix worked as a pickup guitarist, backing musicians including Little Richard, B.B. King, Ike and Tina Turner, and Sam Cooke. In 1964, he moved to New York and played in coffeehouses, where bassist Bryan Chandler of the British group the Animals heard him. Chandler arranged to manage Hendrix and brought him to London in 1966, where they created the Jimi Hendrix Experience with bassist Noel Redding and drummer Mitch Mitchell. The band's first single, "Hey Joe," hit No. 6 on the British pop charts, and the band became an instant sensation."

I heard that Jimi liked mushrooms, but preferred his raw.  A product of the psychedelic age, rumors have it that he indulged a bit.  What a great part of history, and a great guitarist.

Kind of ironic that while Sue and Luke are at church, I decide to prepare a snack.  Not knowing at first what to make until I noticed a bunch of mushrooms that never got cooked at Thanksgiving.  I bought the big box, so even after cooking a couple of dozen last week, there were plenty left.

While mulling over the ingredients, I thought, it would be fun to experiment.  Not with raw mushrooms, but with a can of crab meat found in the cupboard.


Mushroom stems chopped
1/2 onion chopped
1 clove of garlic chopped
2 tbs butter
2 tbs olive oil
1 can crab meat drained
1 egg
1/3 cup of shredded cheddar
1/3 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
Pam or more butter for the pan

Heat butter and oil, saute mushroom stems, onions, and garlic till soft
Remove from heat
Add Crab, egg, cheddar, and breadcrumbs.

Oh Yeah, pre-heat the oven to 400 F

Spray baking pan with Pam.  Stuff mushroom with mixture.  Place in pan.  Repeat till no more mushrooms or no more stuffing.  Add some water to bottom of pan...just enough to coat the bottom (keeps the shrooms from sticking...again unless you want to add more butter to the pan).

I am sure that more butter in the mix and more butter in the pan is the way to go to make them even more decadent and delicious.  Opt for healthy and less butter.

Oven for about 20 minutes.

Photo of the day "Crab Stuffed Mushrooms"

Simple and Delicious.  I tried one before Sue and Luke got home.  

I really gotta go running tomorrow.

Magic Number 142

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cyber Monday

I started to read email while making my coffee this morning,  Chock full of Cyber Monday advertising inviting me to keep the spending that started just prior to Thanksgiving going.

In the old days, when we called it E-Commerce, only a brave few dared us their credit card online, thinking the credit card number and information would be stolen.  

Fast forward 15 years, and clearly the price, convenience, and selection of ordering online is not only 'old school', but safer than taking out the plastic in a public place, and trusting it to some clerk behind the counter as opposed to that 128bit encryption.  Any site with https: is likely safer than your local mall.

This day in history "President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a bill officially establishing the fourth Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day.
The tradition of celebrating the holiday on Thursday dates back to the early history of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies, when post-harvest holidays were celebrated on the weekday regularly set aside as "Lecture Day," a midweek church meeting where topical sermons were presented. A famous Thanksgiving observance occurred in the autumn of 1621, when Plymouth governor William Bradford invited local Indians to join the Pilgrims in a three-day festival held in gratitude for the bounty of the season."

With Black Friday behind us, it seems Thanksgiving is the time that we prepare for Christmas as there are typically only a month or so of shopping time till Christmas.

At lunchtime, after getting Optimum to keep me as a customer (nice discount to keep me from fleeing to FIOS), I succumb to the advertising.

After looking at a few sales, I end up at Walmart and get something shipped to store.  I can't say, because you never know who is reading this.  Sue takes advantage of the NYS Passport that is $40 TODAY, instead of $65...even NY State has gotten in on the Cyber Monday thing.

Kyle also got involved, and used Ebay, Paypal, and his Visa Debit Card.

Luke has been prowling the online sales like no tomorrow.  He has had his eye on a pair of shoes (Sneakers), some Adidas beauties for $140.  We typically draw the line, so when he finds his size at Dick's Sporting Goods in his size, on sale, 25% off and free shipping.  I am so proud.  My youngest, who is thirteen  has some of his dad's genes....the frugal ones.

I have to go.  I have to look at Lands End and NYS site to get my NY State Park Passport.  Happy Shopping !

Photo of the day "Cyber Monday"

Sunday, November 25, 2012

White Lightening

Pumpkin muffins for breakfast.

Gavin heading back to Hartwick this afternoon.

Kyle at soccer practice.

This day in history ""The Mousetrap," a murder-mystery written by the novelist and playwright Agatha Christie, opens at the Ambassadors Theatre in London. The crowd-pleasing whodunit would go on to become the longest continuously running play in history, with more than 10 million people to date attending its more than 20,000 performances in London's West End."

Still have to get thru that list of chores from the beginning of my long weekend.

Finished making room in the garage.

Put up the outside Christmas lights.

Stacked the wood pellets for winter in the garage.  Country Boy White Lightening.  This is season 4 and the pellet stove has now paid for itself.  With the price of heating oil at close to $4 a gallon, pellets as a clean and renewable resource are helping us cut our oil consumption by 50%, and saving us some money at the same time.

After stacking the pellets, it was time for a cup of coffee and a leftover pumpkin muffin.

Chicken Tikka for dinner, and some lazy time on the couch.  the house is warm as the pellet stove cranks out  a steady flow of heat.

Photo of the day "White Lightening"

Made in America.  These pellets are made from 100% OAK saw dust collected and pressed into pellets.  The wood floor company that collects and recycles the saw dust has a slogin  No bark !

On the list for this week is to Save Money on Cable bill or maybe switch to FIOS

Magic Number 144

Saturday, November 24, 2012

First Family 5K

The house was bustling early this morning as we prepared to get to the 'Can't Means Won't 5K' charity race at Heckscher State Park.  The wind was kicking as we piled into the car at 8:30.

Dressed in various layers, some heeding the warning that is was cold and windy, while others ready to brave the elements.  Sue and Kyle had their jackets.  Gavin a light runners jacket, gloves and hat as he started his warm-up routines.  Me, a pair of warm up pants, a short sleeve shirt and a long sleeve runners shirt.  Luke, in shorts and a single layer long sleeve shirt (the one I urged him to wear which is wool lined).

I donated my gloves to Luke who says it is freezing, and we all got ready at the starting line for a 9:30 start.  Gavin in the front, Luke and I in the middle and Kyle and Sue towards the back as they are paired up as walkers/joggers.

This day in history "On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, a groundbreaking scientific work by British naturalist Charles Darwin, is published in England. Darwin's theory argued that organisms gradually evolve through a process he called "natural selection." In natural selection, organisms with genetic variations that suit their environment tend to propagate more descendants than organisms of the same species that lack the variation, thus influencing the overall genetic makeup of the species."

Last year, I ran this same race, my first 5K.  This year it became the first family 5K that we have run.  Each of the three boys came away with awards for this race.  How exciting as Luke finished in under 30 minutes, with me only seconds behind.  Gavin inspired him to go hard at the end (Gavin took the top honors for the 2nd year in a row).  Sue and Kyle coming in strong with the timekeeper/announcer showing the love to the 'Jenkins Family'.

There is always a nice crowd, and plenty of refreshments after the race.  I notice some familiar faces from the  NY State Park Summer Series.  Did I tell you that running is addicting ?

I sure hope we can repeat this family racing.  The NY State park Summer Series was fun, and would be a perfect way to spend some time together and enjoy our natural resource.  I think we can tailgate and setup chairs at the parks and make a night of it.  Fitness is an added bonus.  As this blog winds down in less than a month, a Fishing and Fitness Blog will be starting up, albeit,  not a daily.

Dinner out tonight to celebrate Gavin's birthday.  Shane comes along for a nice meal at the Japanese Hibachi.  Gavin will be heading back up to school tomorrow with his friend Shane driving him.  It was nice having all the boys home under one roof, even if it was for a few days.

Photo of the day  "First Family 5K"

Magic Number 154

Friday, November 23, 2012

Blade Runner

Took Kyle to soccer practice and then returned a damaged black ops video game.  Game Stop insurance saves the day.  While there, pick up another copy for Kyle, along with a new turtle beach headset.

Quick stop at home and then off to Sayville to pick up our runners packs for tomorrows charity race.  ooh , there is quench gum in the bag...Luke likes that.

Turkey sandwich for lunch.  I do a couple of miles while waiting for Kyle's practice to end.

This day in history "On November 23, 1936, the first issue of the pictorial magazine Life is published, featuring a cover photo of the Fort Peck Dam by Margaret Bourke-White.
Life actually had its start earlier in the 20th century as a different kind of magazine: a weekly humor publication, not unlike today's The New Yorker in its use of tart cartoons, humorous pieces and cultural reporting. When the original Life folded during the Great Depression, the influential American publisher Henry Luce bought the name and re-launched the magazine as a picture-based periodical on this day in 1936. By this time, Luce had already enjoyed great success as the publisher of Time, a weekly news magazine."

We take Luke to Sports Authority as no black friday would really be complete without at least a little bit of shopping.  North Face on the radar.

Good thing I took a day off work.  Time to go to physical therapy.  A quick visit where I receive ultrasound therapy, and some new therapy taping.  A broader, longer stronger kinesiology tape that the therapist says should help support me during the race tomorrow.   He thinks I should walk instead of run.  We will see.

Baked Ziti and Meatballs for dinner.

Luke beats me in two consecutive pool matches.

Gavin and I watched Prometheus the other night.  The same director as Blade Runner. 

A cult classic from the 1980's.  We watch the weird movie together, even though I saw it a couple of times before Gavin was born.

Photo of the day "Blade Runner"

Ridley Scott has directed some weird stuff.  

Magic Number 158

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

It is so nice getting up and knowing you don't have to go out.  Today's weather was very nice so when the turkey was in the oven, out we went to wrap the fig trees.

I asked Luke what his favorite summer fruit is...he says figs.  I said, me too, now come out and help me wrap the fig trees.  He was reluctant at first, but as soon as we started, he forgot all about his video games.

With so much food to prepare, and only five of us home to eat, I wonder if I should cut back on the offerings.  My decision is made...cook everything, and have lots of leftovers.

This day in history "In the presence of members of Congress and the media, the Northrop B-2 "stealth" bomber is shown publicly for the first time at Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, California.
The aircraft, which was developed in great secrecy for nearly a decade, was designed with stealth characteristics that would allow it to penetrate an enemy's most sophisticated defenses unnoticed. At the time of its public unveiling, the B-2 had not even been flown on a test flight. It rapidly came under fire for its massive cost--more than $40 billion for development and a $1 billion price tag for each unit."

One thing we should all be thankful for in the USA, is our freedom.  While other nations are at war, and live under some level of persecution, scrutiny, or attacks, we for the most part have it real good.  The cease fire between Israel and Palestinians is into its first full day.  The troops are backing off, and hopefully, the escalations of violence cease for good.

I found another sweat potato that looks like a little mouse.  The CSA is over, but the veggies are still being eaten.  The little mousy potato was checking out the cheese that was destined for the stuffed mushrooms.

Spending most of the day prepping, cooking, checking food, and trying to time it all for the 4pm feast.  The turkey looks great, and once it comes out of the oven, the frenzy to cook the veggies and rolls starts.

Menu: Turkey, Sweat  potato, mashed potato, yams with marshmallow, stuffing, green beans with walnuts and blue cheese, rolls, gravy, and stuffed mushrooms.  The mushrooms were an appetizer that disappeared about 45 minutes before dinner.

Hours of cooking, and a scant half hour of eating.  With plenty of leftovers in fridge, I decided to catch up my blog.  All this writing is making me hungry.  Almost time for pumpkin pie and a nice cup of coffee.

Thankful for all that we have, our good health, no storm damage, and especially having all the boys under one roof.

Photo of the day "Happy Thanksgiving"

Bird Bird Bird, Bird is the word.  Have you heard about the bird ?

Luke tackles two wings and a drumstick.  Sue , Gavin and Kyle have some of everything and then some more.  Me, I ate the other drumstick and all the veggies.

Magic Number 160


A day off of work and a large list of things to get done today.  Since I am off till Monday, whatever does not get done today, can be done tomorrow.  Famous quote "Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today"

First and most important is that visit to the Physical Therapist.  I have been procrastinating for weeks, and where has that gotten me.  Not back to full strength or pain free from an initial injury over a month ago.  I left a message the day before, and I followed up a few minutes before 9am and made an appointment.

Sue, Kyle and Luke got their usual early start and they are at school.  Gavin is sleeping in but says he wants to go for a morning workout.  I leave a note "945 Went to PT, be back in an hour or so"

This day in history "The American inventor announces his invention of the phonograph, a way to record and play back sound.
Edison stumbled on one of his great inventions--the phonograph--while working on a way to record telephone communication at his laboratory in Menlo Park, New Jersey. His work led him to experiment with a stylus on a tinfoil cylinder, which, to his surprise, played back the short song he had recorded, "MARY HAD A LITTLE LAMB". Public demonstrations of the phonograph made the Yankee inventor world famous, and he was dubbed the "Wizard of Menlo Park."

I get to PT and the office staff are very friendly, the waiting room empty, and the buzz of activity in the therapy room and strength training areas a comforting sign that people are being treated.   Before I get to sit down, the office manager asks me for insurance card and hands me the obligatory new patient forms.  Instead of having me fill them out in the reception area, she brings me to an exam room.

The doctor shows up minutes later and says he will be with me shortly and escorts me to another room which he likes better...I think it is because it is on an outer wall of the building with some sunlight coming in.  A thorough review of my injury, medical history, and some movements of my legs and hips to elicit a pain response and he is ready to explain what has happened and his treatments.

First visit, I get ultrasound and some Kinesio tape on my right hip and left buttocks....More on the Kinesio tape in another blog.  Let's just say its the tape you see athletes in the Olympics wearing and probably like me wondered what some tape across the skin could do.

Gavin and I knock out some of the list.  We shop for TURKEY and stuff, have lunch together at a neighborhood Asian Fusion place "Jiang' and then head towards the mall.  We score some needed items from Trader Joes, Dicks sporting goods, but strike out at Barnes and Noble.

We scoot over to the CSA pickup site hoping for a bounty of items, including sweet potatoes.  To my surprise, the bins are all empty.  Rita's store looks closed, but I poke my head in.  She says she is cooking dinner at her store because the kitchen is better...THE CSA ended last week.

We get back home to find Luke playing xbox360, Kyle at PJ's house and Sue at the gym.  My corned beef gently simmering the past 3 hours looks fine.  Time to get the potato,carrots, and cabbage ready.  Dinner was delish, with all items except the corned beef coming from CSA.

Practice at Deer park for Kyle, and Gavin and I watched Prometheus.  Late night for me as I head to bed after midnite.

Photo of the day "Jiang"

P.S. I don't usually eat my fortune cookie.  I had it in my pocket and while wandering around the mall, I decide to open it and eat a piece.  Ironic that the fortune has the word 'jiang'...the same name as the place Gavin I go to when he is home from college to have some pad thai chicken.

Magic number 166

Fig tree still needs a wrap, and that garage is a disaster.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Gavin's Home for Thanksgiving

Last day in the office was busy but productive.  Will be nice to have a few days off form work.  I need time to buy a turkey and some other parts of the Thanskgiving feast.

Decide on chicken tikka for dinner.

This day in history "On this day in 1923, the U.S. Patent Office grants Patent No. 1,475,074 to 46-year-old inventor and newspaperman Garrett Morgan for his three-position traffic signal. Though Morgan's was not the first traffic signal (that one had been installed in London in 1868), it was an important innovation nonetheless: By having a third position besides just "Stop" and "Go," it regulated crossing vehicles more safely than earlier signals had."

Imagine the mayhem and number of accidents we would have without that delay (yellow third signal).  Now we have red light cameras as well in an effort to get everyone to slow down and drive more carefully.  Gavin caught a ride with his friend Shane, and most if the ride on the highways, there will be very few lights.

Sue is anxious this eve and every noise outside, she gets up to check if Gavin has arrived.  She is usually able to watch TV, and still hear when a car comes down the street or near the house.  After a couple of times being fooled we hear the front door open....Gavin is home.

We exchange some stories, and he tries our kale chips.  Of course he is hungry, my boys are always hungry.  Dinner was scarfed down by his brothers hours ago, and we have not been to stop and shop since before Sandy arrived.  Gavin settles for a protein bar, and a bowl of cereal.

We talk till about 11pm, and then everyone heads up to sleep.  We have a full day planned.

Get Turkey and stuff
Go for a run
Get physical therapy
Wrap the fig trees
Watch Prometheus
Clean up the garage a little
Shop for Gavin (Trader Joes, Sporting Goods)
Make corned beef and cabbage

Good thing I took off work today.  I needed a break.

Photo of the day "Gavin's home for Thanksgiving"

P.S. We have a 5K run coming up that the whole family is doing.  Oh one more item for the list.  Pick up Veggies from CSA.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

3 in 1 foam roller

Waking up early for work was not so easy, and I have some new aches and pains from the long drives this past weekend.

Kyle is down for the count with a sore throat and general malaise.  He is taking a rare sick day.

At lunch time, my back is bothering me from sitting in my office so I decide to go to Sports Authority to see if they have any stretching and massage tools (rollers) so that I can start to get the kinks out.

This day in history "Brazilian soccer great Pele scores his 1,000th professional goal in a game, against Vasco da Gama in Rio de Janeiro's Maracana stadium. It was a major milestone in an illustrious career that included three World Cup championships.
Pele, considered one of the greatest soccer players ever to take the field, was born Edson Arantes do Nascimento in Tres Coracos, Brazil, in 1940. He acquired the nickname Pele during his childhood though the name has no meaning in his native Portuguese. When he was a teenager, he played for a minor league soccer club in Bauru in Sao Paulo state and in 1956 joined the major league Santos Football Club in the city of Sao Paulo, playing inside left forward. Two years later, he led the Brazilian national team to victory in the World Cup. Pele, who was only 17 years old, scored two goals to defeat Sweden in the final."

A short work week, as I took off Wed and Fri, so I am trying to get everything squared away.  Seems there is too much email and things to do.  I can only imagine how many hours in this uncomfortable chair I will have to spend next week trudging through thousands of emails.

Soccer practice announced...Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun.  No rest for these boys as they prepare for an EDP season and another college showcase.  Soccer used to be a Fall Sport.  Now it is Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall.  Tournament and or EDP games the next three weekends....

When I get home from work, Kyle is doing homework, and Luke is already asking what's for dinner.  Chicken wings , sweat potatoes, and peas.  You have to eat fast nowadays or Luke will eat all the wings.  He is a growing boy.

I use the foam roller for my back, glutes, hip, and IBT.  It kind of hurts rolling my body on this thing.  I deal with it, as it is supposed to help loosen muscles, increase blood flow, and stretch those tight ligaments.  The video makes the maneuvers look easy and seemingly painless.  All this because I am too stubborn to go to Physical Therapy.

Made it to the gym after dinner.  Combo Cardio - Bike, Treadmill, Elliptical.  Magic Number drops to 175.

Photo of the day "3 in 1 foam roller"

Monday, November 19, 2012

Roll n Roaster Soccer Weekend

So, back to the pitch we go for our last game of the tournament.  Since the team didn't win both of their games, or get enough bonus points, we are relegated to the punishment game at 1:50 PM.  It is cloudy, breezy and cold.

Let's add insult to injury (not a real injury thankfully), as the game is delayed by 40+ minutes.  We all checked out the hotel and made our way to the field an hour before start time.  Some players and parents took flights down, and now have to make haste to go catch their return flight.

18 players to start the weekend, and we are down 4 players now.  3 driving to the BWI airport, another one who left Saturday because he also is the kicker for his HS football team.  Why do we go three hundred miles away to soccer tournaments ?

This day in history "On this day in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln boards a train for Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, to deliver a short speech at the dedication of a cemetery of soldiers killed during the battle there on July 1 to July 3, 1863. The address Lincoln gave in Gettysburg became one of the most famous speeches in American history.
Lincoln had given much thought to what he wanted to say at Gettysburg, but nearly missed his chance to say it. Shortly before the trip, Lincoln's son, Tad, became ill with a fever. The president and his wife Mary Todd Lincoln were no strangers to juvenile illness: They had already lost two sons to disease. Prone to fits of hysteria, Mary Lincoln panicked when her husband prepared to leave. However, Lincoln felt the opportunity to speak at Gettysburg and present his defense of the war was too important to miss, so he boarded a train and headed to Pennsylvania."

Well, back to soccer.  I was asked to give out team pamphlets to college coaches.  I was able to give out two pamphlets with team and individual player BIO's.  This is a college showcase tournament.  One went to the "Italian Federation' who were looking for that one special player to go to Switzerland to train and take a semester of education.  The other to Howard CC.  Yes, CC as in Community College.  They are located near Baltimore and the only reason they came to the game was because they also coach the U16 team we are playing against.  So in essence.  NO real college opportunities at all.

The 3rd game makes it a few minutes into the 2nd half when one of our players is mauled from behind.  The officials don't blow a whistle as the player lies on the ground face down on the cold Bermuda grass.  Our two coaches run to his aide... the referee tells them he did not call them onto the field.  The coaches say "We Don't Give a Shit".....30 seconds later, the game is called as a forfeit.

Now let's see how this pans out.  While waiting for the players to come off the field, one of our parents reads through the college showcase book that should highlight the team and their players.  ISA MC UNITED is NOT even in the showcase book.

My take on this is that my family and the other families spent $600-$700 dollars to go to this tournament, where no college coaches looked, and we got to play 2.5 games of soccer.  A SUPREME WASTE OF TIME AND MONEY.  My hip and leg hurt like hell getting there, and had similar discomfort on my 6 hour drive on the way home.

We did stop for lunch at Subway, in a NJ rest stop for a Pumpkin Late, and then in Brooklyn for a roast beef with cheez sandwich.   Some bonding with Kyle is always nice, and we will have more time like this soon when we play in the next College Showcase in December.  I am so excited, it's on Long Island !  Let's hope they don't have to clear the snow off the fields as in years past.

Thank Goodness for Roll n Roaster

Photo of the day "Roll n Roaster Soccer Weekend"

P.S. Pete took some video of the games this weekend that I can hopefully glean something positive...Highlights of Kyle and the team playing that may prove useful when the boys contact college coaches.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Aye Carrabba

After a nice nights rest at the Hampton Inn, we got ready for the soccer tournament.  Breakfast in the lobby, followed by a quick 10 minute drive to the soccer complex.  We were pre-warned about the photo speed traps en route to the fields.  One of the coaches got 4 speeding tickets last year.  A nice friendly Maryland aint Mayberry Md...Aye Carraba.

We get to the field and all games are delayed about 30's only 830am ???  Well, seems there was a frost delay.  Yes, frost delay.  Aye Carraba.

While the boys waited to warm up, I decided to go for a run.  It was brisk, but starting to warm up as the morning sun rose in the suburban neighborhood of Germantown.  The complex of fields cut into rolling hills and valleys may have been a farm at one time.  As I start my run, I don't really know how large the complex is, or how far the paved running/biking trail is going to go.  A few hundred yards into the run I approach my first hill.  Aye Carraba.

This day in history "On this day in 2003, ex-soldier John Muhammad is found guilty of one of a series of sniper shootings that terrorized the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area and dominated national headlines in October 2002. Police charged that Muhammad and his 17-year-old accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, killed 10 people and wounded three others during a three-week killing spree. After just over six hours of deliberation, a jury convicted Muhammad of the October 9, 2002, shooting of Dean Meyers while he pumped gas at a Sunoco station in Manassas, Virginia."

Hey, we are only a short distance away from Washington DC...not sure how far, but based on the density of this suburb, it is likely an affluent bedroom community.  Adjacent to the Panera Bread is a Metro stop, and signs for Kiss and Ride are everywhere.  Kiss and Ride, is a little different than park and ride, but you get the idea.   Aye Carrabba.

Back from a 3 mile run., I get the task of handing out team bio pamphlets to college coaches.  There are no college coaches coming to watch.  So why are we at a college showcase ?  One good thing, is Pete is video taping the games.  Aye Carrabba.

After lunch and some R and R at the hotel we head back to the filed.  Once again, the quest for college coaches continues.  I walk up and down the sidelines hoping to spot some college coaches.  I give a pamphlet to the Italian Federation, and Howard Community College.  So much for college showcase, I am convinced it is a supreme waste of time and money.  Go to clinics, or summer camps at the colleges you are interested in.  Aye Carrabba.

The boys take a 3-0 lead before half time of the 2nd game.  It is now getting pretty dark, and the in the last moments of the 2nd half with the game clock already expired, the opposing team scores a header on a corner kick.  MC United win, but as the team leaves the field, Kyle has calculated such things as wins,, shut outs, bonus points, etc.  Seems the last goal against takes them out the semi-finals.  Aye Carrabba.

Dinner at 7pm at Carrabba.  The place is packed and even with call ahead seating, it is a long wait and big mess as only the boys really had a reservation.  It all work out in the end, and everyone gets to eat.  I really enjoyed the meal, but think these team dinners are a bit rough to do.  Between players and parents, there must be 40 of us...the team and parents occupying various areas of the restaurant.  Carrabbas.

Photo of the day "Aye Carrabbas"

Long Drive to Maryland

Soccer is the name of the game.

I work from home and take a half day try and get a jump on the traffic and drive to Maryland.

Kyle txt at 12ish and asks if he can stop at home before we get on the road.

This day in history "On November 16, 1901, a spare, low-slung car called the "Torpedo Racer"—basically a square platform on bicycle wheels—breaks the world speed record for electric cars in Coney Island, New York. The car's builder and pilot, an engineer named Andrew Riker, managed to coax his machine one mile down the straight dirt track in just 63 seconds (that's about 57 mph; today, by contrast, the world speed record for an electric vehicle is about 245 mph). The battery-powered Torpedo Racer held onto its record for ten years."

Setting no records in the ride to Maryland.  At the start of the trip, we are making good time and I excited to make to Brooklyn in about an hour.  Even the belt parkway is merciful.  We get over the Verazzano in under 1.5 hours.

Staten Island and New Jersey are another story.  My hip and leg hurts now.  It is a frustrating ride into NJ and into Delaware.  6 hours and 290 miles later we reach our destination.  To our surprise, we made better time than most of the other drivers on the team.

Soccer, and the long drive to Maryland.  We go out to get Kyle a grilled chicken ceasar salad.  As usual I fall asleep watching the news at around 1030.

Photo of the day "Long Drive to Maryland"

Friday, November 16, 2012

The lazy blogger

Seems my routine is way off.  I don't get out for that early morning run which has kept me in shape, and I really think gives me more energy.  The lazy blogger.

My leg is feeling a little bit better, but now seems the lower back is messing with me.  Finding it difficult to sit at my desk, or drive without starting to feel a numbness.  Still have not made my way to physical therapy, and as stubborn as I am, I may not until next week.  The lazy blogger.

This day in history "On this day in 1867, the first stock ticker is unveiled in New York City. The advent of the ticker ultimately revolutionized the stock market by making up-to-the-minute prices available to investors around the country. Prior to this development, information from theNew York Stock Exchange, which has been around since 1792, traveled by mail or messenger.
The ticker was the brainchild of Edward Calahan, who configured a telegraph machine to print stock quotes on streams of paper tape (the same paper tape later used in ticker-tape parades). The ticker, which caught on quickly with investors, got its name from the sound its type wheel made."
My profession, an information technology manager for Reuters, is heavily involved with provided news and stock ticker information.  While I never had to support the original stock tickers, in my early days with Reuters, we supported very low speed communications between the exchanges and our computing sites.  Mostly a desk job now, where in the past I got to fix and install equipment.  The lazy blogger.
So, as we move closer to Thanksgiving, I notice that I have blogged well over 300 times, and with the end of the Mayan Calendar fast approaching, I will have to be approaching 365.  If nothing else, I have recorded a typical or maybe not so typical year in the life of a lazy blogger.
Back at the gym the past few days, as it is cold and dark outside both morning and night.  Moving into a fall routine.  Trying to get back on track with a Turkey Trot (5K) race coming up on Nov 24th.  The whole family is signed up for this charity run this year.  Not looking for any personal best this time around.  The lazy blogger.
So, not so lazy really, as I did 7 miles total at the gym, albeit (bike, elliptical, treadmill).  Magic Number reduced to 192.
Photo of the day "The lazy blogger"

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


Noticed the other day when putting air is Sue's tires, that her passenger front tire was in bad shape.

While at work, I text Sue to remind her that her tire (it is her car) has to be replaced and that a wheel alignment is needed.

She says I should bring the car in as they will ask questions and she knows it is a pain in the ass.   I agree and tell her that after work I will take care of it.

This day in history "Edward H. White II - First U.S. astronaut to walk in space. With James A. McDivitt he manned the four-day orbital flight of Gemini 4, launched on 3 Jun 1965. During the third orbit White emerged from the spacecraft, floated in space for about 20 minutes, and became the first person to propel himself in space with a maneuvering unit. Two years later, White was one of the three-man crew of Apollo 1 who in 1967 were the first casualties of the U.S. space program, killed during a flight simulation (the others were Virgil I. Grissom and Roger B. Chaffee)."

On my way to pick up the CSA veggies, I realize that with no credit card or bank card I can't pay for Sue's tires and alignment.  Cards got wiped out last week when some idiot left them in his pocket while in an MRI machine.  Guess MRI and magnetic strips on cards don't get along.

I come up with a good idea...have Sue leave the gym and meet me at Pep Boys.  On 2nd thought, maybe not a good idea.

We drop her car off at 5pm after I have already told the guys at Pep boys, 2 tires and an alignment.  The say about an hour and a half.  Great, we go back home, cook dinner and wait for them to call.  At 630, I call them...they have not even looked at her car yet.

Finally after 8pm, they call and say pick up the car.  And BTW, they could not do the alignment.  Thinking i am gonna hear that the suspension, ball joints or something is out of whack....glad to hear it is there machine that would not work right.

We pick up, and I try to get them to throw in a free alignment...They will tale $10 off when we come back...I mean when Sue goes back.  New tires, and a safe auto going into winter.

Back home three batches of kale chips.  Who would have ever thought I would make and eat kale chips.

Photo Before "Kale"

Photo After "Kale Chips"

Magic Number 199 with a little help from the bike and elliptical...Hey it's my goal and blog :-)


Really didn't have anything to blog about yesterday.

Since a daily blog, here goes.

Went to work

Took Kyle to soccer after work

This day in history "On this day in 1955, the actress, comedian and talk-show host Whoopi Goldberg is born in New York City. Goldberg earned an Oscar nomination for her Hollywood feature debut in Steven Spielberg’s The Color Purple (1985) and went on become the first-ever solo female host of the Academy Awards."

Decided to try and run as my hip doesn't hurt, now it's my lower back that is bothering me.  I am thinking all things attached from the lower back to the knee.

2 mile around Deer Park.  Not bad, not good.  Leg and hip felt funny, but not painful.

Home late, after 10pm, so was lazy and went to sleep around 11....
Magic number drops slightly, and I have to tally up my miles on the bike and elliptical.

Photo of the day "Whoopi"

Monday, November 12, 2012

Rack of Pork

So foggy this morning, you could hardly see the stop lights. Even by 8am , the sun hadn't really burned off the fog.  Some strange weather we are having lately.

A nice day outside I guess, but by the time I made my way to the parking lot and home, it was starting to get breezy and overcast.

This day in history "On this day in 1954, Ellis Island, the gateway to America, shuts it doors after processing more than 12 million immigrants since opening in 1892. Today, an estimated 40 percent of all Americans can trace their roots through Ellis Island, located in New York Harbor off the New Jersey coast and named for merchant Samuel Ellis, who owned the land in the 1770s.
On January 2, 1892, 15-year-old Annie Moore, from Ireland, became the first person to pass through the newly opened Ellis Island, which President Benjamin Harrison designated as America's first federal immigration center in 1890. Before that time, the processing of immigrants had been handled by individual states."

Sue spent the day painting the upstairs bathroom.  It looks really good, and all I had to do was bring up the ladder.

A trip to Costco with Luke and Sue took two wagons.  A new record of $513 and no bug ticket items.  I guessed it was going to be about $400.  When did everything get so expensive.   Luke asked for pork chops, and then we saw it.  A rack of pork, pre-seasoned, and ready to bake.

Back home, the roast goes into the oven as we put the groceries, etc away.  For the past two weeks we have done our best to go through all the food in refrigerator and freezer.  Now, we are all stocked up again, and as long as I remember to defrost something, we won't be going out to dinner.

Late dinner, as the rack of pork took 1 hour and 45 minutes to cook, and 15 minutes to rest.  Luke picked a good dinner.  CSA sweet potatoes and steam fresh corn accompany the meat.  One of the sweat potatoes has a root trailing on one end...funny, it looks like a mouse now that it is baked.

I love to cook, and I love to eat.  Everyone very happy with a fancy surprise Monday night dinner.

Photo of the day "Rack of Pork"

It was so easy a caveman can do it.  18 minutes a pound at 350 F.  Let rest for 15 minutes if you can

Sunday, November 11, 2012


We stopped in Staten Island and Brooklyn to see part of the championship soccer match between Berkeley and ACPHS.  Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.  Both small schools who compete in the Hudson Valley Mens Athletic Conference.

We are watching the game to get a feel for the level of soccer that is played by ACPHS, a school on Kyle's radar that offer a Pharm.D program.  Being a small school, it is part of a conference that I did not even know existed.  USCAA - United States Collegiate Athletics Association.  Who knew.  

This day in history "
The Soviet Union announces that, because of its opposition to the recent overthrow of the government of Chilean President Salvador Allende, it would not play a World Cup Soccer match against the Chilean team on November 21, if the match were held in Santiago. The International Football Federation had given the Soviets until the 11th to decide whether they would play the game. With the Soviet refusal, the Federation disqualified the Soviet team from World Cup play. It was the first time in the history of World Cup Soccer that a team had boycotted over political issues.The Soviet team had played the Chilean team to a 0-0 tie in September, in a game that took place in Moscow. It steadfastly refused to play the rematch in Santiago, charging that the stadium in which the game would take place had recently been the scene of the torture and killing of Allende supporters during the coup. Allende, a Marxist, was killed during the takeover. The Soviets offered to play the game in a neutral country, but the Federation refused this compromise and the Soviet team, that had reached the quarterfinals in the last World Cup in 1970, was eliminated from competition. Despite fears that other Iron Curtain countries would join the boycott, teams from East Germany, Bulgaria, and Poland participated in the 1974 games held in West Germany.This would not be the last time that Cold War battles found their way into international sporting events. Following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, President Jimmy Carter asked the U.S. Olympic team to boycott the 1980 games to be held in Moscow. The U.S. team acceded to this request."

Academics being the most important consideration for choosing a school, followed I think by the campus, and then of course can soccer fit into the mix when taking on a very difficult 6 year degree in Pharm.D.

The level of play is something that Kyle could handle, and he would likely make a mark and get playing time even as a freshman.   It was not Albany's day today, as they went down 2 goals in the first half.  The coaches appeared calm and capable, and never had a negative word while the boys played.  We left to visit Brian and Therese, and then headed home.

We did stop for a bite to eat at Brennan and Carrs.  Our usual eateries flooded by Sandy have not been able to reopen yet.  Roast Beef was very good.  I like the cheez better at Roll and Roaster.  Randazzo's, what can I say,they have the best shellfish and seafood on the planet.  That is clams, mussels, calamari, bisque, chowder...We eagerly await both eateries to make their comeback.

Photo of the day "ACPHS"

So this is where we start.  The first college team Kyle has watched play whole considering the school.  Sure, he has seen other college teams play on TV or watched a game at Stony Brook.  

Lady Bug

So I missed a blog.  It happens.

Not much going on except some nice weather for a change.  Snow almost all gone, even in the shade.

This day in history "On this day in 1969, "Sesame Street," a pioneering TV show that would teach generations of young children the alphabet and how to count, makes its broadcast debut. "Sesame Street," with its memorable theme song ("Can you tell me how to get/How to get to Sesame Street"), went on to become the most widely viewed children's program in the world. It has aired in more than 120 countries."

I watched Sesame Street as did most of my friends.  It has lasted the test of time and has recently come back into the limelight when public television became the topic of discussion.  Big Bird go the last word.

Saw a late in the season lady bug.  I think they seek shelter in the winter.  Maybe this one was fooled by the mild weather following a snow storm

Photo of the day "Lady Bug"

Friday, November 9, 2012

You Rock

I help Kyle get to school this morning as he has 2 backpacks and a large box to take Sachem East.  The ride up to the school is easier than usual, there are really less cars on the road.  I wish him luck on his HS soccer semi-final match.

Later in the day, Sue lets's me know that Kyle's soccer game got moved out east to Dowling filed at 6pm instead of in Dix Hills.  No excuse to leave the office early to catch his game.

It is getting chilly out, so a sweatshirt, jacket and gloves are needed.  I still cant believe that so many people are still living without power and/or heat in this cold.

This day in history " At dusk, the biggest power failure in U.S. history occurs as all of New York state, portions of seven neighboring states, and parts of eastern Canada are plunged into darkness. The Great Northeast Blackout began at the height of rush hour, delaying millions of commuters, trapping 800,000 people in New York's subways, and stranding thousands more in office buildings, elevators, and trains. Ten thousand National Guardsmen and 5,000 off-duty policemen were called into service to prevent looting.
The blackout was caused by the tripping of a 230-kilovolt transmission line near Ontario, Canada, at 5:16 p.m., which caused several other heavily loaded lines also to fail. This precipitated a surge of power that overwhelmed the transmission lines in western New York, causing a "cascading" tripping of additional lines, resulting in the eventual breakup of the entire Northeastern transmission network. All together, 30 million people in eight U.S. states and the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec were affected by the blackout. During the night, power was gradually restored to the blacked-out areas, and by morning power had been restored throughout the Northeast."

We have been plunged into darkness on other occasions, and the most recent, hurricane Sandy has many of us thinking about co-generation.  In most cases, that will be a small portable generator to run critical lights, heating, hotwater, and refrigeration.

Kyle and his team play well, but lose 1-0 in a well played game.  Kyle, you rock.

Oh yeah, forgot to mention that my MRI results are in and I have Bursitis and Tendinitis.  Now I will have to wait who knows how long to speak to my ortho so he can advise me.  Or maybe I continue to loose faith in our healthcare system and continue to self diagnose and treat.  I was rocking for a while with my fitness.  I will get back, even if I have to ride bikes and use elliptical machines.

Work is being difficult these days, and jokingly, I am contemplating a new career or at least one that does not involve being so close to information technology.  I like music.

Photo of the day "You Rock"

Click the link

You Rock

Red Sky at Night, Sailors Delight

Thursday morning looked ugly, and the wake-up call from Sachem schools at 5am, a real eye opener.

Yes, school was cancelled again at Sachem due to weather.  This brings us to a total of (8) days of missed school, that will need to be made up at some point.  Good thing I didn't book that timeshare and flight to sunny Florida for the end of June.

The roads were a bit mushy and slick by the time I left the house for work at 9am.  Started my day working from home with early meetings.  So very fortunate to have phone and internet while hundreds of thousands on Long Island still don;t have power.

This day in history "On this day in 1895, physicist Wilhelm Conrad Rontgen (1845-1923) becomes the first person to observe X-rays, a significant scientific advancement that would ultimately benefit a variety of fields, most of all medicine, by making the invisible visible. Rontgen's discovery occurred accidentally in his Wurzburg, Germany, lab, where he was testing whether cathode rays could pass through glass when he noticed a glow coming from a nearby chemically coated screen. He dubbed the rays that caused this glow X-rays because of their unknown nature.
X-rays are electromagnetic energy waves that act similarly to light rays, but at wavelengths approximately 1,000 times shorter than those of light. Rontgen holed up in his lab and conducted a series of experiments to better understand his discovery. He learned that X-rays penetrate human flesh but not higher-density substances such as bone or lead and that they can be photographed."

I had an xray last week, or was that almost 2 weeks ago now.  Pain in my right leg/hip/hammy...if you read the blog, you know.  Anyway the Dr. used that inexpensive and primitive diagnostic tool to rule out a fracture.  Then he ordered an MRI (like he was ordering a pastrami sandwich at the deli).  Then the storm came.  So, earlier this week I finally got my MRI.

On my way home from work, I go to get some Chinese takeout.  Sue called in the order as I was leaving work.  Food is ready when I get there, so I hand over my shiny new credit card (just got a replacement due to FRAUD alert on my old one).  The card does not go thru.  They try again, but still no good.  I have some cash I was saving, just in case I need gas....

I think my credit and bank card are no longer usable because they were in my pocket with the cash when I went into the MRI tunnel.  The the tech never asked if anything was in my pocket.  I left my cell phone and keys in my jacket.  What a dumb ass...

The Red Bulls lose their playoff game after being snowed out the other night.  What was Henry thinking as he blew the game for the team encroaching during a PK, and then not taking the final free kick.  Luckily for us, the NY COSMOS are coming back, and will be playing in Hofstra next year....I had that ride over the bridge into NJ anyway.

Photo of the day "Red Sky at Night, Sailors Delight" (Lifted from Barbara Bartoli)

The Red Sky last night is usually a sign for mariners that the storm has gone and that brighter high pressure systems are taking over.  Time for me to start preparing for a last of the year fishing trip to Port Jeff.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Say it isn't snow

This morning Sue and the boys went back to work and school at Sachem.  I got ready for an early morning MRI at Zwanger.   I can't believe how loud that machine is.  The MRI tech asked me if I wanted music...I said sure how about Pink Floyd.  He says they have Pandora, so it should be no problem.

Well, the music was more like top 40, and it didn't really matter as the machine drowned out the music in the headphones.  Now I understand why people freak out a little from the is machine.  As the machine pulsed, I swear I felt it pelting me with magnetic pulses.  35 minutes later after a series of 7 or so scans of 5 minutes each, I was released.

This day in history "The Tacoma Narrows Bridge collapses due to high winds on this day in 1940. Fortunately, only a dog was killed.
The Tacoma Narrows Bridge was built in Washington during the 1930s and opened to traffic on July 1, 1940. It spanned the Puget Sound from Gig Harbor to Tacoma, which is 40 miles south of Seattle. The channel is about a mile wide where the bridge crossed the sound. Sleek and slender, it was the third longest suspension bridge in the world at the time, covering 5,959 feet."

The wind starts to howl and the rain starts to look a little chunky.  Well, a Noreaster in November, even the start of the month can be pretty nasty.  I am working from home so honker down and forget about the weather for a while.  

The phone rings and Sue txts me that several Sachem schools have lost power.  Early dismissal is announced so my quiet home office is going to be getting busy soon.  I run out to the bus stop to get Luke as it is now raining and snowing..

Everyone is home early, and I need to go out to pick up my CSA share of veggies.  I get there and the snow is pelting me as I look for the sign that lists what we should take.  The sign is several feet away and has the wrong list (last weeks I guess).  Not knowing how much of each to take, I guesstimate.  Driving home is hindered and dangerous as several roads in the area are grid locked with lines for local gas stations.

Luke's favorite tonight, spaghetti and meatballs.  I sort the veggies and we settle in to watch the Redbulls soccer game.  It is delayed due to snow.  Oh, by the way, Kyle's soccer game today was cancelled due to weather.  Redbulls game get cancelled.  My pellet stove keeps shutting itself down with some sort of error code.   

Photo of the day "Say it isn't snow"

LIRR delays, closures, Penn Station closed.  Friends losing power again.  Weekend tournament upstate NY cancelled.  The final year.  

P.S.  This photo was taken at the start of the snow...forecast was for rain and wind.  Extremes in our weather.  Is it a sign.  I think the new normal is for more bad weather events.  The boys will be going to school till July.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Went to work

Went to bodega

Went to get gas on a short line

Went to vote on a long line

Went to bed wondering who will win

Monday, November 5, 2012

The wings didn't stand a chance

Worked from home to help ease the gas shortage.  I have about half a tank left and figured those waiting for 1-3 hours for gas, need it more than I do.  Carpool this morning so that I can get Kyle, Mike, and Danny over to Sachem East HS for soccer practice.  On the way home I see the Hess station in Holbrook with a 100+ car line....I decide to wait another day.

Did I shoot myself in the foot by actually passing a gas station with perhaps only an hours wait time.  Seems this station gets fuel often as I have seen the lines a few times since last week.  The news is saying things will ease, but I am starting to get ant-see, and tomorrow it is my turn to drive to work.

Again, in an effort to conserve and do the right thing, I have 3/4 of the Long Island based staff working from home, cutting our consumption drastically.  From what I hear, there are stations in Nassau that have power and no gas, where prior to that, they were lights out.  So, where is the long line of gas trucks filling up in Holtsville going ?

This day in history "On November 5, 1895, Rochester attorney George Selden wins U.S. Patent No. 549,160 for an "improved road engine" powered by a "liquid-hydrocarbon engine of the compression type." With that, as far as the government was concerned, George Selden had invented the car--though he had never built a single one.
Selden's design was fairly vague, and was actually based on a two-cylinder internal-combustion engine that someone else had invented: Selden had simply copied the one he'd seen on display at the 1872 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. In 1899, Selden sold his patent to a group of investors who called themselves the Electric Vehicle Company. In turn, they immediately sued the Winton Motor Carriage Company, the largest car manufacturer in the United States, for infringing on the Selden patent just by building gas-powered cars. Winton settled, and the court upheld Selden's patent in 1903."

Now we have too many cars, with too many cylinders using too much gas.  The supply glitch will take some time to remedy itself.  Did the distributors make sure there reserves got topped off before Sandy came to town ?  As gasoline arrives daily in Port Jefferson and other ports, are there enough drivers to deliver fuel around the clock ?  What will happen if the Noreaster coming Wed causes more tankers and barges to stay out at sea or slows the docking and offload process ?

Tomorrow is election day, and how many folks in the NY metropolitan area will not get out and vote ?  Will they change their votes based on the governments storm response ?  FEMA and the Red Cross are all over, but from a supply side situation with Food, Water, Blankets, and dare I say fuel, the government response is lacking.

Sue made it out to Stop n Shop and bought some fresh and packaged food.  She said the store is not stocked as usual.  Chicken wings on the menu for dinner....we have not had them for a while.  Running multiple errands in one trip out so that she can conserve fuel.  She is also teetering at half a tank and did not stop to fill up....I Don't think she saw any stations open, although the social network says Valero on Vets Highway has gas.

A fresh basked pumpkin pie was cooked right after the chicken wings and will be dessert for us the next couple of days.

Had a real conundrum tonight at dinner as I couldn't decide on which sauce to put on my wings.  I like them buffalo style,  blue cheese dressed, and even wanted to try some Habanero pepper sauce.  What to do, what to do.  One with Franks RedHot, and a blue cheese dip.  Another with the Habanero pepper sauce.  Then, like the old Reese's peanut butter cup got your Franks mixed up with my Habanero.  No.  You got your Habanero mixed up with my Franks....Decided to mix all three.  As Emeril would say "BAM"

Photo of the day "The wings didn't stand a chance"

Hoping to see a gas station open tomorrow on the way to work, or home from work...perhaps the worst times to be looking for gas.

Magic Number 220

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Strong Island

Long Island is staying strong and those that have, are volunteering and donating to those who have lost so much.

I saw some long lines at gas stations and facebook posts sound like there are more stations with gas.  We have been conserving and hope that helps others who need the gas for generators, and for their cars to get to and from work.

This day in history "On this day in 1979, hundreds of Iranian students storm the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, taking more than 60 American hostages. The students, supporters of the conservative Muslim cleric Ayatollah Khomeini, were demanding the return of Iran's deposed leader, the Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlevi, who had fled to Egypt in January 1979 and by November was receiving cancer treatment in the United States. After the student takeover, President Jimmy Carter ordered a complete embargo of Iranian oil."

It feels almost the way it felt when we had odd and even days and long lines during the oil embargo.  For those who remember,the government pledged energy independence..Gas rationing has been implemented in NJ and I sure hope we can get some gas tomorrow or the next day.

The Sachem Schools are closed Monday and Tuesday.  I am going to work from home, as will a couple of the guys who work with me.  Then we will alternate who comes to the office, until the flow of gas resumes.

A four mile run this morning, and some lingering twinges in the hamstring.  Decided to blow out the sprinkler system.  Said hello to my neighbor and he pointed out that one of my pine trees is leaning badly toward the fence.  It has always been a little crooked, now it too close to being toppled.  With a Noreaster coming Wed. I have to figure out how to take it down.

Photo of the day "Strong Island"

We donated some boys clothes and water the other day.  Today, Sue is going thru the closets and we have comforter, blanket, and more clothes ready to donate.  There has been a strong outpouring of donations all around.  Strong Island.

Magic Number 224

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Holtsville to the rescue

After sleeping in, and having a leisurely breakfast, I decide to stretch, warm up and go for a run.  Even if the NYC marathon is postponed (or is it cancelled ?), I personally need to get back to running after my hammy injury has sidelined me for the better part of October.

About half way down my street, my cell phone is ringing...I stop and see a long strange number, typically a telltale sign that Bangalore India is calling.  Sure enough, trouble in paradise.  One of our data centers in the northeast, this one in Nutley NJ which has been running on generator power since Sandy came through.  The next couple of hours are spent recovering services.

Kyle comes home from practice, and after watching some soccer, he says that there was a long line for gas at our gas station on Broadway Ave.  Sue and I look at each other, each with about 1/2 a tank of gas and decide to not get on the nearly mile long line.

This day in history "At 12:05 A.M. on this day in 1930, the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel between the United States and Canada is officially opened to car traffic. As Windsor Mayor Frederick Jackson had bragged at the tunnel's elaborate dedication ceremony two days before, the structure--the only international subaqueous tunnel in the world--made it possible to "pass from one great country to the other in the short space of three minutes." (For his part, Detroit Mayor Frank Murphy cheered that the project signified "a new appreciation of our desire to preserve peace, friendship, and the brotherhood of man.") The first passenger car through the tunnel was a 1929 Studebaker."

The Brooklyn Battery Tunnel is still filled with an estimated 86 million gallons of water, and from what I read, there is fuel mixed in with the water.  To give you an idea of how much water this is, the tunnel is well over a mile long.  Actually it is a pair of tunnels.  . It consists of twin tubes, carrying four traffic lanes, and at 9,117 feet (2,779 m) is the longest continuous underwater vehicular tunnel in North America.

An engineering marvel for sure, and it will take a modern engineering marvel to drain it and get it back into service.

Like I said earlier, the gas station near us got a fuel delivery.  Guess how fuel gets to all the service stations ? By tanker truck of course.  But how many know about the route the gasoline travels to get from ports to the distribution depots ?  We have one about 5 miles away in Holtsville  ( basically the middle of Long Island ).

Northville gets it's distillates from tankers in Port Jefferson.  Fuel then travels via pipeline (small tunnels) to East Setauket.  From their it travel to the facility on Holtsville.  Finally, trucks of all sizes come to fill up with #2 heating oil, Diesel, and various grades of gasoline for local distribution.

Products are transported directly to the East Setauket Tank Farm by two 16" pipelines, then on to the Holtsville Terminal through one 12" pipeline.  Let's do some math.

East Setauket Tank Farm

Located 3 miles south of Pt. Jefferson, this tank farm has 9 internal floating roof tanks with a total capacity of 950,000 barrels(39,900,000 Gallons).

Holtsville Terminal

Located 9 miles south of the East Setauket Tank Farm, this facility has 12 floating roof tanks and 3 cone roof tanks. Storage capacity totals 380,000 barrels(15,960,000 Gallons).

We will take the values of 1 million vehicles in Suffolk County as a fairly accurate.  If each vehicle on average can take 15 gallons of fuel, then it would take 15,000,000 gallons to fill each vehicle once.

So, even if Holtsville was filled to the max with gasoline, there would only be supply enough for each car to fill up once.  But since it holds Diesel, #2 Heating oil, and Kerosene.  Without nearly daily deliveries to port, the fuel supply can easily be disrupted in only a couple of days.  Most folks I know fill up about once a week, but demand has also spiked due to the number of generators running on gasoline.

Some relief coming....

Northville Terminal at Port Jefferson opened yesterday with 2.4 million gallons of diesel on site. A barge arrived at midnight Saturday morning with 1 million gallons of gasoline. A barge from Hess Port Reading is expected to arrive today with 1 million gallons gasoline. Other scheduled deliveries include:
· November 4: 1.5 million gallons gasoline
· November 5: 1.5 million gallons gasoline
· November 6: 4 million gallons of gasoline and 5.3 million gallons of diesel

Photo of the day "Holtsville Fuel"

P.S. I ran 3.3 miles this afternoon.  A slow run, with a slight discomfort in the right hamstring.  If we all walk more and conserve fuel, we will be back on track soon.  

Gas Shortage - How to get 41 Miles Per Gallon - Conserve Fuel
Walk to the store and buy some beer !
A recent study found that the average American walks about 900 miles a year. Another study found that Americans drink, on average, 22 gallons of beer a year. That means
that, on average, Americans get about 41 miles to the gallon!

Marathon Cancelled :-)

The buzz around the office, for those that could make it there was about gasoline.  Everyone on Long Island knows that there is a shortage, and the scant few deliveries making it to stations, are drained within hours.  Long lines form in an instant.

Most of us have suspended or cancelled any plans that involve driving.  Those fortunate to have power and internet in my line of work (information technology) can work from home.  One of the guys in the office goes out to grab lunch and spots a station on Motor Parkway and LIE service road about to open.  Within seconds, he is 15th on line.

An argument between some folks behind him ensues as cars converge and bumpers touch.  Some pushing and shoving.  We get an email from our co-worker that there is gas and a short line.  A few leave work to get there...arriving 5 minutes later, most turn around as the line is hours long.

This day in history "On November 2, 1986, Norwegian distance runner Grete Waitz wins her eighth New York City marathon. She finished the 26-mile, 385-yard course in 2:28.6, more than a mile ahead of the second- and third-place women in the race. Waitz had won her first marathon in New York in 1978—setting a world record--and she won the NYC marathon again in 1979, 1980, 1982, 1983, 1984 and 1985. In 1988, she won it for the ninth time—something no runner had ever done in any marathon."

There is another buzz as social media erupts with the news that the NY Marathon which was planned for this weekend will still happen.  How can that be when there are so many homeless, without power, and an already overburdened infrastructure.  How can we think of closing bridges and roads in and around the city when most of us have already had a marathon of holding things together in the aftermath of Sandy.

Pressure builds, and finally common sense prevails...the NYC Marathon is cancelled for this weekend.

As school districts scramble to get back on track, and bring students back to classrooms, HS soccer practice resumes.  In a way, this is good and bad as the athletes all need rides to the HS which is miles does however represent a step back to the 'normal routine'.   Car pools form and the boys get together...they have playoff game this week.

I was not able to get an MRI, as the radiology office, even though reopen needs a couple of days to seed the MRI machines.  I guess they are not like our household appliances or computers that need a simple reboot.  I will try a short run again tomorrow.  No marathon for me.  Just trying to get a short run in without coming back limping.

Another piece of good news, is that gasoline shipments to stations that have power should resume this weekend or early next week.  I think priority should be given to those with gas cans for their generators, and a 10 gallon limit imposed to help speed up the lines and fill the needs of more people.  Half a tank in both cars, so we continue to conserve.

Photo of the day "Marathon Cancelled"