Sunday, February 28, 2010

Vancouver 2010, Eh!

It's been a great past two weeks for fans of winter and winter sports.  In New York we've seen record snowfalls and world was treated to the 2010 Winter Olympics from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.  As a New York who enjoys and embraces seasons [Editor's note: that was a cheap shot at a certain San Diego friend] I prefer the Winter Games over the Summer Games.

Since I have this bad habit of typing to no end, I will dedicate a later post to discuss my thoughts on what should constitute a sport.  Here are some of my observations from these games in no particular order:

[Obligatory Disclaimer: all observations were made prior to watching the closing ceremonies]

1)  It took awhile but I finally learned curling.  Not that I want to watch people throw rocks down an ice surface for three hours, but at least I can explain it to someone in under 90 seconds.

2) A Double McTwist 1260 is not an item on the McDonalds Dollar Menu nor a character on Grey's Anatomy, rather two flips while doing 3.5 twists (rotations).  Thank you Shaun White.

3)  Two-man luge continues to make me uncomfortable.

4)  Favorite Olympic name:  Torah Bright (Australian snowboarder)

5)  Do the Olympians have any say on what they wear?  I plan to purchase a Ryan Callahan USA hockey jersey (image on right).  I'm still undecided about the USA snowboarders "uniform" (with the fake jeans) but what were those Norwegian curlers (curlists?) thinking.  Still undecided about the USA snowboarders and I'm not going to discuss the outfits worn by the figure skaters.

6)  I can do without the NHL and the all-star festivities for the two-week Olympic tournament.  I just hope someday soon the women's tournament can be competitive.  Watching the USA and Canada dominate the women of the world is just painful. 

7)  The Russians continue to be sore losers.  After a male Russian figure skater lost to an American, he took a shot at the victorious skater's lack of performing a quadruple thingy, and called his performance something more fitting to ice dancing (another winter Olympic event).  My take:  Is there a difference between figure skating and ice dancing anyway?

8)  And finally, the Olympic games will always be remembered for the tragedies and negatives of the games and less so for all the great moments.  Vancouver will be probably be remembered for its glitches and tragedies rather than its amazing stories.  More on this here.  All non-believers should do a quick search of the Summer Games in Atlanta in1996 or the Winter Games in Munich in 1972.

Eight observations in honor of Apollo Ohno's total career Olympic medals.  Congrats to all those who competed in Vancouver and I'll see you all in Sochi, Russia in 2014!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

First Rant of 2010

I have this great idea for a television show....

Let's take this massive cast--I don't know, around 50 or so--and fly them across an ocean to some coastal location.  Then, out of nowhere, something happens.  Maybe it's a flock of birds, maybe mechanical error, maybe snakes, maybe zombies, but the plane goes down.  It's a full plane, but miraculously, and without the aid of Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger, those 50 (more or less) survive.  Sounds exciting so far!  Could be the coolest reality show EVER.

But wait, this is not some new reality show.  The show will drag on but the cast will slowly dwindle to a small core of characters.  Over time there will be flashbacks, future scenes, and alternate realities.  Still interested?

It gets better.  Each episode will leave you asking lots of questions with the ultimate goal of keeping viewers coming back for answers.  Now here's where it gets tricky.  While the show will answer one or two of your many questions, it will also leave you with about a half a dozen more questions.

So now I'll ask you...does this sound like something you might be interested in?

The show I so eloquently described is "Lost," which premiered for its sixth and final season last night on ABC.  DISCLAIMER: [Editor's note:  that's legal-speak for "here comes a lame excuse to explain some condition of ignorance"] I have not seen a single episode of the show and my knowledge is based on TV promos, tweets, and Facebook statuses.

Why do people watch this?  I get that everyone has different tastes but why do people OBSESS over this show?  Yesterday, about 15 "friends" changed their status to something lost related (including one who posted a countdown every hour), plus a handful of tweets.  Today, more posts and tweets, most of whom were confused.  [Editor's note: my law school training gave me the deductive skills to understand "What just happened" to mean confusion.

C'mon people!  This is only a television show.  Television is supposed to be simple.  It's an activity for entertainment purposes.  It's not supposed to make you think, wonder, suppose, question, or any other feeling/emotion other than relaxation.  Okay, I watch Jeopardy sometimes  because I do like to think while watching TV every so often.  Television's role is to entertain, like a sporting event, or numb the brain, a la Jersey Shore.   It's an escape! 

It you want frustration and confusion, allow me to introduce you to a new medium of entertainment.  It's called reality.  It also comes in a generic form, life.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Apple's iPad takes on...

Congratulations on coming back to this blog after the ridiculously long, semi-live post from last week's State of the Union address.  That was my longest post to date and a record I hope to never break.

On Wednesday, the biggest news did not come from our nation's capital, rather it came from an Apple conference.  Steve Jobs, founder (too lazy to look up official title within the company) of Apple announced the launch of a new product, called the iPad.  To put an end to the jokes, it's not a feminine hygiene product but there will be lots of confusion between the iPod and iPad in Boston.

I was not invited to said conference but I followed along at Gizmodo and Engadget who had reps there and even got to try the iPad in person.  They also wrote full reviews and comparisons so check out their sites for full details.

Now it's time for my take on this device.  All the rumors pointed to a new tablet that's portable yet powerful enough to replace the netbook (which Apple has long refused to build).  I like my toys as much as the next guy, and it's true, the older you get, the more expensive your toys.  So I was thinking about getting one of these when they become available in two months.  The more I thought about it, however, the more I started finding flaws in the device.  Then I remembered that I already own two laptops (circa 2006 and 2007, respectively) and a pocketPC (circa 2004).  There's also that desktop from 2000 that's taking up space in my room.

I thought it would be interesting to see how the iPad stacks up against my pocketPC.  For those who are unfamiliar with the pocketPC, it is basically a step up from the original PalmPilot and predated Blackberries.  Mine is the Dell Axim x50v, which was a gift from me to me.  It has served me well for years and continues to do so.
Dell Axim x50v                                 Apple iPad
              [Engadget photos]
I should also add that the pocketPC comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack and Windows Media Player for mp3s.

So there you have it people.  As for me, I'm going to hold off on this device.  Find me a tablet the size of an iPad, but with a full operating system, web browsing (with flash), and a built in camera and you have a customer in me.  Until then, my pocketPC will be in my pocket and when I need the power of a real computer, I'll keep my laptop in tow.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

State of the WHAT?!?!?!

[The following takes place between the hours of 9 and 10:15pm EST. Editor's note: all typos and formatting will be corrected after the speech]

As I am writing this, every news station in the country is introducing the State of the Union Address which is set to begin in about 5-10 minutes. For those who know my political views, the analysis that follows should not be looked at with hatred towards anyone. In fact most of what you will read is not even the opinion of DotCW, rather a sarcastic, cynic, and humorous commentary of the speech itself. Calling the Commander in Chief "Barry" is not to mock, but simply shows how close he and I are.

Okay, so two old guys just introduced our President and he came out to a thunderous applause. My first observation is that he's wearing a red tie so he's out for blood. That can't be right, as he hasn't made a single important decision yet or wielded that big presidential stick. C'mon, we're the US of #$@%'n A.

He's making his way to the podium, stopping to shake hands with everyone on the way. In all my years watching this speech, Barry is the first to relish his celebrity status. He might as well sign autographs along the way. It's like I'm a kid at a ballgame catching players before the game who make their way down the lines greeting fans during warmups and signing anything you put in their faces.

And we begin....

[Editor's note: If someone wants to count how many times Barry drops an "um..." or refers to himself in the speech (I, president, myself, etc), I would greatly appreciate it and may offer a nice reward]

He opens with the history of the State of the Union and followed by recounting all the problems when he took office. Mind you, many of which were exacerbated by his actions and inactions.

What a great country we are--the strength and resilience of the people. CLAPPING. [Wow, Nancy Pelosi really does clap like a seal!]

And here comes the scaring. Put all your kids to bed or don't let them watch this. Barry is not a supporter of the bank bailouts but called them necessary. [Hey Biden, wipe that stupid grin off your face--don't you know you're on camera.]

TAXES: I didn't file yet but he's saying that taxes were cut for 95% of the people. [That isn't entirely true.] Theoretically there are tax cuts and credits available or eligible for up to 95% of the people BUT that doesn't mean that they will take advantage of them. Will everyone making less than $150,000 actually buy a home just for an $8,000 credit?

Mr. President thinks he's a comedian. [I just flew in from Camp David and boy are my arms tired.]

JOBS: Yes, we need jobs. [DUH!! But to create jobs we need to spend money. We can't spend money because we just instituted a freeze, you've spent in records amount in the past year, and for other reasons this economics major can't think of right now.] Hmmm... take bank money repaid from the bailouts to extend credit to small businesses. [Uh, Barry, we have a problem. Banks aren't too keen on lending right now. Maybe you missed that memo.]

There goes Pelosi again clapping like a seal because Barry gave a shout out to the House. [Kudos Madame Speaker but feeding time is at 11am sharp.]

So far Mr. President has impressed me for not yet using his trademarked "uh." He does still like to refer to himself a lot. What happened to "WE the people"? I get it, I love myself too. But there are times when humility is a little more important.

Finally something both Democrats and Republicans can both stand up and cheer for: this country should not take second place to any other nation in the world. CLAPPING!

Here comes more talk of spending lots of money. ENERGY. Nucular! [Sorry, still thinking about the past 8 years.] Energy and climate bill? [That doesn't work for me. I will drive whatever I want, whenever I want. Let the hippies mock me in their Priuseseseses. I'll give them the courtesy wave as I blow right past them.]

[Where does he come up with some of these numbers???] Double our exports to create 2 million jobs? [I've got a better idea: make it more difficult for foreign products to enter this country so cheaply. Do you know why American cars can't compete in Japan? It's because they make it so difficult by charging high taxes making it cost prohibitive to import or even manufacture American cars in Japan. We should treat them the same way with their goods.]

EDUCATION: [Been there done that. I spent my 21 years in school.] Let's make it more affordable. And onto student loans. Nice incentives for working in the public service. Loan forgiveness for those who want to make $30,000 for 20 years. [Totally worth it!]

HEALTHCARE: Yes, we need reform. [But do we need a ridiculously expensive program that's over 1700 pages long?] Ooooh another joke by Barry. LAUGHS. Barry just promised he will not walk away from this issue. [Here's an idea: keep it simple stupid.] Barry just asked both houses of Congress and both parties for any better ideas they may have. [Hey guys, go do what you're paid to do and get on it! Git-r-dun!]

THE BLAME GAME: The deficit. All of this was Bush's fault. [Uh, not exactly. The wars and attacks on this nation were not his fault and at the time necessary. And for those calling out for a full troop withdrawal, that's going to cost a lot more and not just in dollars. When a recession hits, let's not spend in record amounts.]

Wow. I really thought he was going to say that he's freezing national security expenses. Turns out that was one of three areas that would not be frozen. [PHEW!]

This is a fun game. When Barry says something dem Dems like they stand up and clap, and when it's something the Republicans like they stand and clap.

Camera just panned through the crowd. Who are the two women wearing bright yellow suits? Didn't you know the dress code for the evening was a dark suit with a white, gray, or blue shirt? Men must only wear red or blue ties.


Barry: Hey you guys in the robes down there. You blew it with your last decision on special interest funding.

Judges: [just sit there with blank stares or give him the "oh no he di'nt" head stare]

[You can't call out the Supreme Court in the State of the Union. That's one of those unwritten rules. It's also unprofessional, in poor taste, and beyond arrogant]

BIPARTISANSHIP: Can't we all just get along? Why does one party have to win at the expense of the other? [I blame the Democrats for that one.] Barry just called for monthly joint meetings with leaders from both parties. [Funny, the Republicans have been excluded from everything for the past year and it was your doing. Did you see the light? Was there a tunnel?]

THE WARS: I can't believe it took almost 50 minutes to finally mention the war beyond a quick mention of it in discussing the deficit. He thinks all the troops will be out of Iraq by August. [Anyone wanna place bets on this?]

Ooops. Pelosi almost stood up when she was not supposed to. Slightly embarrassing but it least she wasn't caught using her middle finger to "scratch an itch on her face."

PEACE TREATIES: With Russia? Guess he doesn't watch all those spy movies. The Russians cannot be trusted. There's a reason that Russians have been the bad guys in so many Bond movies and that Jack Bauer is chasing them in 24 [Editor's note: that's my second 24 reference without ever watching the show.]

PROMISES: Well he's made lots so far but here are a slew of new ones. End employment discrimination. [Honestly I thought that ended when we finally allowed (read: voted) a black man to the office of president.] Oh wait, he meant between men and women. Put an end to don't ask don't tell and sexual discrimination in the military. [Hey, if there's enemy fire and I'm in the trenches, let a gay soldier jump on me and shield me.] He's winding down and he finally touched on gays and women. [Can you make them more of an afterthought?]

I just got a shout it!!!! Okay technically he called me out but I'll take what I can get. Barry mentioned there's too much cynicism out there.

THE END. And may dog bless America. (sorry, keyboard dyslexia)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


[Editor's note: I am writing this after midnight on the 27th but the following takes place earlier in the night, on the 26th.]

I had this awesomely long post about how great the day was going as a result of two pieces of news that came my way earlier but based on the title of this post and the way the post started, there has to be a story coming...and there is!

While typing the post, I was also streaming Graham Colton live from a recording studio. I'm typing away and listening in the background and then out of nowhere, the music just started playing the same millisecond of sound on repeat.

BAM! Computer crashed. Had to manually shut it down and restart it. Sure enough, I come back here hoping to finish this post and get some sleep, and the post is no more. I thought these things had auto-save but NO. Epic. Fail.

Ok, maybe the posted should be titled "Stupid Me" but I like to blame others. Also, given all my computer issues in the past, it's so easy to blame the computer.

Maybe eventually I'll post the great news from earlier.

Friday, January 22, 2010

This just in....

We interrupt this 7 month recap to bring you a special news bulletin: IT'S FRIDAY!!!
My weekend started early as I'm on my way down to Maryland to visit friends from college. For those who are working today, I'll be thinking of you while I'm cruising down the Jersey Turnpike listening to satellite radio and hitting the snow that's making its way up.

Keeping in tradition, I hope this lightens the day for all you cubicle dwellers:


Thursday, January 21, 2010

7 Months of Catching Up - Part One

After our carolling session last post, a lot of you have been asking me to elaborate on the list. As a man of my word (sometimes), I will. [Editor's Note: sometimes refers to being good on my word, I am ALL man ALL the time. Even on weekends.]

Today we will tackle items 11 and 12, both referring to Twitter. At some point roughly three months ago, yours truly joined Twitter. This was not an easy decision nor one that I am proud of, rather a necessary evil. But why is Twitter so bad?

There are two sides to this argument: those who feel the feel the need to tweet (took me 11 weeks to nail the lingo) every little thing that happens to them at six-minute increments (another reason I hate billable hours) and those who don't tweet and look down on those who do. I used to be in that latter group looking down on everyone who was so self-absorbed and thought their life was so important that they needed to narrate their life in 140 character posts.

I was probably just another hater because if you've read this blog you would know that I probably would not be able to keep to the 140 character limit--yet I'm very succinct with my texting (translation: I don't sound like a 12 year old girl or 40 year old perv, l8r LOL!).

Finally I just sucked it up and created an account. I figured with all the tools out their who are less important than yours truly, how can I not start tweeting? Okay, the real reason I joined was to gain support and use it as a tool to hype up my business. Then the strangest thing happened: I actually got hooked on it and discovered Twitter for all its power and glory. I started getting all the breaking news from my areas of interest and I started dropping knowledge on all my followers (there's a shout out to the 40 of y'all) and the world.

So I stand here today to announce that I, DotCW, tweet and I'm proud. Fine, proud might be over the top but something between proud and embarrassed works. It wasn't easy and I'm still learning, but I'm getting there. I think the "11 weeks learning Twitter" will probably run longer. You can reach me there @sorryimnottellingcuziwannakeepthisanonymous.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I'm Baaaaaack!!!

Wow, it's been awhile since I painted this space with letters, words, sentences, and assorted drivel. It's been a very interesting ride to say the least. A lot has happened since May and in due time I will catch you all up on all the craziness.

Before the recap of the past seven months, that I will try to condense to something that one can read over a coast-to-coast flight (you do still recall my knack for succinctness), I would like to announce some changes that will take place here at DotCW.

Last year was an experiment in blogging. Now, expect a slightly more professional style (translation: no more typos). That experiment lasted only five months but this time I plan to keep it going for the long haul. The topics will remain the same although a Digitus Medius spinoff is not out of the question. I will continue to post random musings and rant about anything, but I will also post updates on my business developments. Don't worry, this will not become a business blog. I will still keep things light the only way I know how--sarcasm and mono-syllabic words.

So here's what you all missed. I'm sure you will instantly recognize the tune (it's quite popular among my Jews).

12 weeks using Twitter,
11 weeks learning Twitter,
10 trips to the beach,
9 something somethings,
8 commandments broken,
7 month blog hiatus,
6 states visited,
5 dollar (parking) ticket,
4 failed '09 resolutions,
3 new blogs followed,
2 surgeries,
and few surprising courtesy waves!

Happy 2010 Internet People!!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Ode to Summer

Summer is officially here everybody! Who's excited? I can't hear you. I said, "who's excited?" I could either sit here and retype that exchange until I start hearing actual voices or I can go on with my post. It might make an interesting read for you guys if I went nuts over a blog post and wind up a like a stunt dummy on Harper's Island (if you don't get the reference, only 6 episodes to catch up on).

Most of us probably got out of work early on Friday (myself included) so we can really make the most of the long holiday weekend. I can tell you that here in the NYC area, the weather has been great since early last week. [Editor's note: It may be longer than that but my memory will only go back that far.] I bet your weekend plans are probably very similar to mine and likely involve the 3-B's--beaches, barbecues, and booze. Ironically [Editor's note: there is no actual irony here, but I like the way the word fits] we all tend to forget the real reason we have this long weekend.

Folks, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the start of summer is not an actual holiday. I, for one, has been to the beach about a dozen times already. I don't make a habit of wearing white but if I did, it wouldn't necessarily start now or end on Labor Day. Then again I don't travel with the snooty crowd and go yachting with men in crested blazers and women who wear big hats. Does Memorial Day mean anything anymore?

So while this is the first official day of summer, beaches can now charge us to tan, and we can start wearing white again (but only until Labor Day), please don't forget what's really important. On this memorial day, make a point to remember all those men and women who fought for this country and continue to keep us safe. This year we should also remember that Nancy Pelosi is a threat to national security (but that's another post for another time).

Time for the Z-Man to get his barbecue ready for tonight. Be safe!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

And for those keeping score at home...

...and you should be, let's have a little recap based on yesterday's post:

1. I got three less than friendly emails regarding a sarcastic comment about abortion. Look, it's your body do what you want--until it becomes my child!

2. I was tempted to watch last night's episode of How I Met Your Mother again just for laughs (but I didn't)

3. I was however so inspired by that episode that my period of inspiration extended to this exact moment in time as I type this, making this two posts in two days (again, for those of you keeping score at home and I know you are)

4. I was also able to keep my promise of making today productive. I sent out those emails I needed to respond to but kept pushing off, sent out several resumes for job postings, and dealt with my stupid insurance company for hopefully the last time. I also spent 3 solid hours doing legal research and actually learned something! I even set up my calendar on my pocketPC for the next two weeks. This is actually a big step because it also means I got to throw out scattered post-it notes and little pieces of paper with small notes on them. The rest of my day was so much less important that even if I had Twitter and was the uber-twit (or is that uber-tweet), I still wouldn't tweet those details.

5. Of course the productivity ended a little after 5pm when I got a call asking if I wanted to go play tennis. I'm not all that good at tennis but I have a tendency to drop what I'm doing to play most sports. I hope to improve on both my tennis and golf games over the summer so stay tuned. Either way, after tennis, I showered and went for dinner and then it was bum-city for the rest of the night until now, as I type this. At least my day ended on a productive note!

Steve Somers - host of local sports radio show on WFAN; known for using that line on the air referring to either ad numbers or segment numbers (I don't recall having stopped listening to "The Fan" many years ago with the exception of actual sporting events)

Ted Mosby - see earlier posts

"We all wanna live forever
we all wanna be something, someday
ready to face whatever's yet to come
and I'm starting it all today"
Stir - Climbing the Walls