Thursday, June 30, 2011

How women are turning our country lazy...or why I don't like Europe

Ok, first and foremost, I am not picking out any individuals in this post nor do I plan on upsetting anyone in particular. It may happen just because of the nature of the post, but not something I'm planning on.

So while I was doing something yesterday, not sure what, I started thinking of how many guys I've seen lately that are dressed casually and whom it appears that are working from home. Now I work from home, but I'm an exception in some regards, you'll see what I mean (I hope). There is nothing wrong with working from home, but no one will convince me that you can ever be as productive at home as you are in an office. Granted there are commuting issues and some office distractions, but working from home has many more, though there is no commute.

So what's my issue? Well, I'm thinking guys in our country are becoming more like Europeans...lazy and whiny. Europeans, at least the French, rioted when the work week was extended from 35 to 37 hours. Then they rioted again when the retirement age went from 60 to 62. Poor babies. It's pretty universally accepted that Europeans don't have as good a work ethic as Americans. Yeah, yeah, I can hear you saying "They just have a better work/life balance!" well that's B.S. They don't work as much because it's part of their culture not to have as strong a work ethic. Fine, I really don't have a problem with that actually, unless I have to do work with them and then it's painful.

But my point is that it seems men in our country are working less and less and that our work ethic has dissipated. No not because of the recession, this has been going on for the last 20 years during boom times as well as bust. So why is this happening? Women. Yep, women. "C'mon Joe how can you blame women for a drop in productivity in guys?" Well, my thinking goes like this, women over the last 50 years have made tremendous strides into and up through the workforce. Undeniable point. While they made strides, corporations realized the need for maternity leave where none existed before (or little existed) and it has in fact became law. Then the computer happened along and corporations realized that women could raise their kids AND work from home at least part-time and corporations don't have to go through the expense of hiring a replacement. But then guys demanded "equal rights" as well, though more subtly and not through any legal channels because we're above that (ok actually it's because we're running the corporations mostly still and making the laws mostly still so it's just accepted as opposed to needing a law change). Anyway, now you have more and more men working from home because companies can't discriminate against men as they allow women to work from home.

And so now we're becoming more and more European in our work ethic and it's all women's fault. We'd still be number one in the world if not for your equal rights and workplace evolution!! At least that's the thought that tore through my head yesterday.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

To be continued....'s been a late softball night, so I'm going to have to write tomorrow. Went 9-9 in two games tonight, but this time the other team only had 9 players, so we beat them pretty badly in just five innings both games. I played better on defense, but only had a few balls hit my way.

Tomorrow: lightning struck my mind today as I've figured out that women are making us more like Europeans.....and not in a good way. Hopefully that entry won't get me in trouble!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Great idea....already taken

The day started off a little odd as I woke up at 5:50 to hit the bathroom and then decided to stay up. My day is basically 90 minutes longer than normal and it was going swimmingly until the "reaction" to my "action" hit. By being up and working on the computer while having the television on and a lamp, the load on the circuit breaker was too much as LL dried her hair and it tripped. Ugh. Of course I was right in the middle of writing probably the most important email I've sent in two weeks, but isn't that the way?

Fortunately I'm not the first person to have this happen to them and both the browser and the website (my email) had saved the draft and I was able to pick up exactly where I left off after the system rebooted. Whew.

So here's a question: you know someone who is getting married (possibly like moi), and you want to buy them a gift. How do you know where the registered? The store possibilities seem nearly endless: Macys, Sears, JCPenney, Target, C&B, Pottery Barn, Younkers, Bloomingdales, Lord and Taylor, Dillards, Kohls, Von Maur, Carsons, just to name a few. Is there a need that needs filling in the marketplace? Some sort of repository of where couples have registered?

Turns out that the need is already filled and filled very well in fact. If you go to The Wedding Channel and type in either party's name to a wedding, up pops the stores in which they are registered. Well done, but there goes my million dollar idea.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Hyundai is lying to you

The best thing after a neighborhood parade that overruns the neighborhood is a nice rain which is exactly what we had this morning. It's just nice to wash away some of the odor, spills, stickiness, whatever that's on the street and sidewalks.

For lunch I was looking forward to some Vietnamese food at this new restaurant across the street from Starbucks call Bun Mi (apparently it's a bit of a chain so you might have one near you). They have various sandwiches on baguettes and some spring rolls, but I was interested in these large dumpling like sandwiches that were filled with your choice of meat apparently. I guess you heat them up either there in the restaurant or at home, but unfortunately, I was not able to find out as even though they just opened on Friday, they already didn't have anymore of these sandwiches. Great. So I hit the bricks and went down to Falafill for a falafel sandwich. Good stuff.

Hyundai has a new program: the Hyundai Assurance Program. They advertise that when you buy a new car, the price drops as soon as you take it off the lot and that they are doing something about it. What are they doing? They are telling you what they will buy the car back for in the future (at some point, but who knows when) when you trade it in during your purchase of a new Hyundai. Soooo many problems with this seemingly innocuous commercial that it drives me crazy!!!

First, the problem of the depreciation in a new car leaving the lot does not go away with this program. They are simply REASSURING you that it will lose value! They aren't doing anything to fix the problem though. They are just going to tell you what you can find on the web as the blue book value history anyway!! Ridiculous.

Then they slide into the commercial that it's only as part of a trade in on a new Hyundai. So now you're screwed yourself TWICE on a new car instead of buying a low mileage used car and just saved that 10-30% depreciation. Now part of the reason Hyundai is doing this is that they are losing sales to the used car market, but it's just a marketing ploy to dupe the uninformed.

Apparently the little green cabbage vegetable is called Brussels Sprouts. It's "Brussels". I did not know that.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Gay Pride 2011

Sunday was the Gay Pride Parade here in Chicago, in the middle of my neighborhood. The parade goes north on one street, south on another and I'm right in the middle. There are two choices in dealing with the parade: 1) leave town for the day or 2) embrace it. Though I guess I employ a third option: go out periodically during the 3 hour parade, snap some pictures, have some drinks, get some sun, then come back inside; sort of a middle of the road tactic.

The weather was fantastic, so here are some pictures of the day:

I entitled this picture "Batten down the hatches". You just never know what 250,000 drunks are going to do whether they be gay or football fans or gay football players. It's just ot a great situation for the environment around the group.

Even the local owners decided to secure some newly grown grass from damage.

Someone decided to toss out some furniture. Someone else put up a sign and assembled the furniture as a little rest stop. Nice. It got a lot of use during the day too.

Here's one small section of the crowd. Look at that clear blue sky!!

WGN News had a float and it had Bozo and weatherman Tom Skilling aboard. About 18 of the floats had their tires slashed overnight at the site where the floats are staged. I believe they were all repaired in time for the parade, but what an immature thing to do.

Speaking of gay football players, here's the Chicago women's pro team.

One of my favorite floats every year: Dr. Z's breast implant and plastic surgery float. Ha! Gotta know your market.

The Iowa Hawkeyes always have a large presence at the Pride Parade.

Botanical gardens trolley. Pretty nicely done.

Scream!!!! The "adopt a cat" van. Again, know your audience!

TimeOut Chicago was represented. The billionaire for whom I worked owns most of the publication.

Frank, a Starbuck's barista marching for Order of the Phoenix....a pagan religion I believe.

This Lesbian cop was REALLY popular.

I have no idea if the sign is correct or not, but it made me laugh.

Probably the most interesting thing I saw anyone carrying today was this gal and her cheeseballs!

Even Wonder Woman showed up!

At some point though, you have to pay the piper for your drinking and it doesn't matter how many port-o-potties they have, there's always a line.

Some people just can't wait to they just plop down wherever and start eating. In this case, it was the middle of the sidewalk.

These folks opted for a side street for their picnic.

This gal has the typical "drunk stance" going on: feet spread wide for balance from swaying, away from people so you don't accidentally fall into them and drink and phone in hand.

These three gals were hammered and opted to take up most of a stoop. They seemed so drunk and sad. I'm sure they had mucho fun earlier in the day.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Softball woes

Last night was my regular softball league night (where our team is 2-6). Benny Baseball runs the team and has taken on the responsibility of getting everyone there, not an enviable role. Last night however, Benny's dad had some medical troubles (he's ok though) and Benny wasn't there. Another guy took over the team for the night, but unfortunately we only had 9 people there (you normally play 10). In this league, you can play with 8 even, but the 9th and 10th spot in the batting order are automatic outs. In our case, just the last spot was an automatic out and it killed us in game one.

Another thing that killed us in game one was my fielding....for the second straight week. I'm not entirely sure what's going on, but I'm really struggling getting to balls, using good form and reacting....not good qualities at third base. It's almost comical it's been so bad. I've run into this problem before, on another league night last year, where the lighting is just up to par. I'm wondering if it's a similar situation, but I don't think so.

Both weeks I've been awful (two of the last three with the middle week rained out), I've gone running the day before and my legs have been a little tired. Possibly more important is some lower back pain, or tightness more accurately, that's keeping me from bending over as quickly and easily as needed. In tournaments I haven't had the same issues and I rarely do anything physical the day before a tournament.

Whatever the reason, I need to start getting better. I also need to keep running though and get in better shape for the wedding and just to be in better shape in general. The two goals may be at odds, we'll see.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Blackcow, Rootbeer Float, whatever you want to cal it.

Somehow I forgot about one of the fun events from last weekend: a fish fry on Friday. Actually it's no surprise how I forgot as I was exhausted and drunk most of the weekend. The fish fry offered sea perch or haddock, broiled or fried, beans and coleslaw in different amounts (2 fillets, 3 fillets or all you can eat). I chose the ayce meal and downed four fried haddock fillets. Good stuff. Then Nick decides he wants dessert. Ugh. Bill and Ricardo pass and I don't hear anything of interest, but I don't want Nick to eat alone, so I went off the menu. The waitress mentioned ice cream as a side to one of the desserts, so I asked if she had root beer. She did. "Can you make me a rootbeer float?", I asked. The 60+ year old waitress said, yeah, I think so, let me check with the owner (whom we had met earlier--he's a golfer, heard us talking about courses and recommended the course where we played both Saturday and Sunday).

Turns out the waitress used to be a HoJo girl back in the day(a waitress at Howard Johnsons) and she made me an awesome rootbeer float!! Couldn't have been happier, except now I was almost too full to do anymore drinking that night.....almost.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Now that's being tired.

Ohhhhh, what a weekend. The boyz headed up north to Ricardo's cabin near the Dells in Wisonsin. Bill the Bear, Nick and I stopped at The Grumpy Troll in Mt. Horeb for lunch and a drink on the way up and then hit a nearby golf course. Time wise we ended up playing until close to dark and then got to the cabin and started the cocktails. It was a late evening on the back porch under the citronella tikki torches. Saturday morning though it was up and at'em at the crack of....9 or 10 I think. Ok, we were moving kind of slow. Billy was hungover after a plethora of scotch and sodas. But we hit the golf course in time for a 1:40 tee time. After a fun round, we headed back to the cabin where my buddy Smitty had arrived after a long drive in the morning from Toledo where he was visiting relatives.

It was a steak dinner on Saturday night and then a trip to the bars and a casino. We closed down the bar (2 a.m.) and then closed down the casino! Who knew casinos closed?? Fortunately they stop serving booze at 2 a.m. so at least while were there we weren't drinking. We had a great time whooping it up at the blackjack table as Smitty and I won $100 , Nick and Ricardo were up too. Only poor Billy didn't end up winning money, but he didn't lose much. Our group was up $200, not too shabby. Ironically, Bill was the designated driver ergo the only sober one!!

Sunday morning came very early, but we made our 11:00 tee time, though barely. It was touch and go for a while, but we made it and I actually shot just as well on Sunday as I did Saturday. Odd. After golf it was some quick food and then a 3 hour drive home with the help of McDonald's iced coffee.

Saw this via email today. It was pretty neat.

Also got this interesting map showing where people in the world are buying in the US.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Fast post

Busy, busy, busy. Off to Wisconsin in the morning and I still have to pack!! The food is almost ready to go, golf clubs are in the car.....haven't bought any booze. Ugh. Oh well. I'll make due. Or is it make "do". I'm pretty sure it's not "doo".

Found out this guy on the 40 and over team on which I'm playing is the same guy that used to be a counselor or something at my high school. On my very first day of high school, I have a vivid memory of running through the halls with my buddies Tom and Pete and he yelled at us to stop and that we had detention. Then he took off after some other "hoodlums". We hadn't even been in high school for an hour yet and I had detention. Quickly we realized though that none of us even knew who this guy was!! Teacher? Dean? Counselor? Principal? We had no idea. And we were almost positive that he had NO IDEA who the heck we were, so we just said screw it and tried to avoid him the rest of the week (not that we knew where he was or was going at any point in time). Naperville Central High School was no small time school. My graduating class had 525 people, so the school had well over 2,000 kids. What were the odds that he would remember us? Turns out, not very good. Over the next four years I didn't have much interaction with this fellow and I'm not sure about Tom and Pete, but we never heard about the detention again. Nice move on our part!! We could have been labeled as troublemakers from day one if we had showed up. Who knows??

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A little burn

Sunday morning we played three softball games with the first starting at 9:30 and the last starting around 1:00 I think. Yeah, that's right: two games and then an hour off before the third game. Well that was enough time for me to get a sunburn and a pretty nasty one at that. Yes, I had on sunscreen, but I also blow my nose often and that's where the burn was the worst. My neck and face, other than my nose and right around it, didn't get burned at all. However my arms didn't escape the sun either, but they just got a little red. One of the guys on the team (before the burn even developed) said LL and I are going to have a kid like Casper. I said I hope not, because I think Casper was gay....not that there's anything wrong with that.....

My hamstrings were extremely tight today and they caused me some lower back pain. Though I stretched them out a few times and took ibuprofen, my back still ached. Oh well, getting old is better than the alternative!! Tomorrow I should be all good (after two days off of exercise) and I'm going to hit the gym again.

Wedding plans continue to come along, though there seems to be a never ending list of things to do. It's worth it in the end though!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Another missed post!

Another long day of not being home yesterday prevented yet another post. This is seriously a problem of late! Yesterday I had a dentist appointment out in Naperville, so I made it for 11:30 to avoid traffic. Then LL and I decided to have lunch and do some more registering out by her work. That also allowed me to have dinner with my folks and then play softball with my 40 and over team, though I use the possessive very loosely since I only played with them twice last year and this is my first time this year. So after 8 days of way too much physical activity, I'm taking some time off, at least through next Monday. My back and hamstrings just can't go full bore anymore. Ha, I rhymed!

Anyway, LL is still very tired and relatively sick as well, so she's going to welcome my time at home, at least until Friday. Friday is when I'll head up north to Ricardo's cabin with Ricardo, Bill the Bear, Smitty and Nick. Should be a fun weekend, but mostly just restful: golf, food and drinking....sounds pretty nice.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Is Joe Still Alive??

It's been a while since I last posted, but it's OK! Or I'm OK is what I should say. Circumstances just prevented posts.

Wednesday I left around 7 for softball and didn't get home until about midnight. Thursday was a similarly busy day when I left for golf at 3 and didn't get home until midnight. I golfed with Bill the Bear, Smitty and Nick and we went out for a few drinks after finishing 15 holes before darkness set in. Friday was supposed to be a nice dinner an movie night with Naperville Greg and Kleveland Kim, but they had to cancel, so it was off to Joliet for the first day of a softball tournament that I was going to miss.

And it was some kind of fun!! We won the first game and then got to play the #1 or #2 team in the COUNTRY. Yep, these guys get paid, by at least one account, $1,000 a weekend, free airfare, all expenses paid, and then performance bonuses. These guys routinely hit the ball out of baseball stadiums, 400 foot shots fairly consistently. But after one inning, we were up 6-2!! There's a 30 run slaughter rule after 3 innings so our goal was to get to the fourth inning. It didn't happen, though. Even though we were ahead after one, they put up 15 0r 20 in the second and then went up 38-6 by the third. Yeah, we didn't score any more runs. Unfortunately I didn't get to hit against them, but I did play in the field the second and third innings. Good fun.

So Friday was again a late night as our game ended around 10:30 or so. Unfortunately, LL got sick (possibly from me) and got a sinus infection. The weekend was tough for her with the limited amount of sleep we had. Saturday morning came quickly as we had batting practice around 8. We had one game, against a team from Oklahoma who was two levels above us. We were up 12-0 and then 20-15 going into the last inning and they scored 9 to go up 24-20. Unfortunately we weren't able to come back and that was the final score.

The afternoon was free now as that was our second loss of the tournament, so LL and I went to Oakbrook Mall and got some gift registering done. It's one of the many tasks still to be accomplished for our wedding, but it was a biggee. We aren't done, but we made great progress.

Saturday night was a birthday party for Terry from Mokena, where we go for Memorial Day, and it was only about 30 minutes from LL's parents' house. They had it a bowling alley where they had these crazy couples bowling games. Naturally I was awful, LL was good!, and we had fun. The birthday boy and his wife, Sandie, bowled on our lane along with Bill and Diana, an elderly couple that we see every year at the Memorial Day party.

Again we stayed out late, it was after midnight by the time we got to bed, and it was another early wakeup call on Sunday (8:15). For the 8 teams at our level, there was a special single elimination tournament which we've won, I believe, the last two years. We won our first game and then played right away again. The second game we won 5-4 with a comeback in the sixth inning to tie the game at 4-4 and to win it in the seventh. I worked a walk in the seventh to push the game winning run to second and he later scored on a 2 out base hit. Unfortunately, that was my only time on base the second game. In the first and third games though, I was 3-3. It wasn't enough though as we lost our last game 7-5.

After working out on Monday, bowling and running 3 miles on Tuesday, and then Wednesday through Sunday above, I'm beat and am really looking forward to sleeping tonight!

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Things I do that are rude

Contrary to popular belief, I am not without fault. It's true. I know. Many of you look up to me and my near faultless pearls of wisdom, but it's time for me to come clean. Why? A valid question. The other day, for some reason, I thought how polite LL is about various things and how some things don't even register with me as being rude.

For instance, when I'm done eating dinner at the table, I get up and take my dishes to the sink and dishwasher. Seems ok to clear away the dishes and such, but actually while LL is still eating, it's pretty rude. So now I sit and wait for her to finish and continue chatting from the table.

Another rude thing I do is blow my nose pretty much anywhere and anytime. If my nose needs blowing, I blow it. At points in the past, I would excuse myself from wherever I was (the room, the dinner table, a meeting) and then go blow my nose. At some point I decided "hey, I'm not leaving. What's the big deal?" Well, that needs to change.

Like any good softball player, I spit. Unfortunately it's not relegated to the softball field. It's sort of like the blowing my nose thing: I just have a strong desire to breath and not choke. That's a fine excuse, but I can still take care of my sputum without being rude about it. So I'm going to work on that.

What else? I'm going to have think more about this.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Production is the word of the day

Things have been very busy that I absolutely HAVE to write down what I need to accomplish in a day or I can pretty much forget about it. For instance today I didn't add "call two of my clients" and so I forgot to call them. It's all good though as I am being productive with work, the wedding and generally with life.

Regarding the latter, I was able to go to the gym and had my best workout since getting a pinched nerve the first week of April. I was also able to get the car washed and cleaned's been a while. Though it didn't happen due to a long wait, I tried to get the oil changed as well. It was a pretty productive day that ended with me going to Whole Foods for some shrimp that I used to make some shrimp scampi for dinner. It turned out pretty well, but could have been better. It was my first time trying to make it though, so I expect better results in the future.

Oh, a follow up to Saturday. A huge storm front came through just after our last game ended. In fact, the rest of the tournament was pushed until Sunday due to the ferocity of the storm. As I drove home at a brisk clip of 20 m.p.h. through the torrential downpour, I decided discretion was the better part of valor and pulled off the road into a McDonald's. The owner, dressed in street clothes, said, "You must be REALLY hungry to come out in this!" Nope, it's just my oasis for the moment I responded. About 20 minutes later the storm had passed and it was easy driving the rest of the way. It was pitch black and the rain was coming in waves for close to an hour, but it took me 20+ minutes to go the mile or two to the McDonald's.

Tomorrow: Rude things I do.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Busy and Hot Weekend

It was a busy weekend starting with cooking ribs again on Friday. They were good, but I feel like maybe I rushed them a bit and should have cooked them a little longer to get that "fall off the bone" texture that we love. They were still good, just not my best. We watched a movie and then hit the sack as I had to get up around 6 to get to a softball tournament at 8:30 in Crete, about an hour away.

Even during batting practice at 8:30 you could tell it was going to be a hot muggy day and the weather did not disappoint. Whew! HOT and MUGGY!! We had lots and lots of water and we only played three games. Unfortunately we lost our first game, had an hour off, won our second game and then had another hour off before losing our third.

If you recall, I was 16-18 in first games of tournaments this season, but was a disappointing 1-3 on Saturday in game one, lowering my OBA from .888 to .809 (17-21). Still good, but a tough game one. The other two games I was 3-3 each game to go 7-9 for the day, a .777 clip. Pretty good since I was leading the team already with a .703 OBA. The games we lost though were disturbing for various reasons, not the least of which was that we had a pretty good team out there and we got run ruled in game one (lost by 10 after 6 innings) and only scored 9 runs in the last game even though we played on short fields (280'), in part because the wind was blowing in. A team has to be able to score runs efficiently regardless of the wind angle, but in the past we've struggled with the wind blowing in and it seems to still be the case. Hopefully we'll figure it out.

Saturday night we met up with Alexis (of Alexis in Amsterdam fame) and Rob (OH) for Indian food. They're staying in the burbs (near where I played league night softball last year), but we went to Devon Ave to Hema's Kitchen for Indian food (our favorite BYOB Indian place). The food and company were both grand and we were even greeted by Hema herself at the register when we walked in!! Nice! Unfortunately I forgot to tell them that it was BYOB, so I brought enough booze for the 3 of us, Alexis wasn't drinking of course, and libations were enjoyed.

After we dropped them off at their Metra train line, we headed to O'Donovan's bar for a 30th birthday celebration of a softball fan. It turns out her cousin is also someone that I do tax-law work with. One drink for us there, a shot for the birthday girl, and we decided to call it a night.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Techie and Foodie

A mental debate I'm having currently is whether or not to get an Ipad for traveling or not. It would be nice to do some of the basics of a computer (internet access, email, etc), but they aren't cheap. Apparently you don't use them for heavier work like with Excel spreadsheets and such, which would be a nice option. It would be nice if I could watch movies on it and especially nice if it would play a DVD, but I don't think that's an option. It probably only plays downloaded movies, which is more expensive than just renting from Redbox or watching a DVD I already own. Hmmm, decisions, decisions.....

Oh no, I'm watching an episode of King of Queens and the main character just received a call on his answering machine and it's the same machine that I currently use....the episode is from 1998. On a related note, I'm thinking about dropping our home phone line entirely and save the money. Seems like a relatively needless expense now if I can get a headset for my Iphone. It's $50 a month, so that seems worth while to make the change. Has everyone else already done this??

On my way to get lunch at Falafill, I saw a couple of interesting things of which I took quick pictures.

As you might recall, in May of last year I called that this restaurant was failing and in March of this year it did indeed close. Now they are putting in a Mr. Taco...whatever that is. We have plenty of not good Mexican options in the area, so I'm skeptical, but I'll give them a shot. I'm sure the landlord is kicking himself/herself for trying to raise the rent on Einstein's Bagels to the point where they bailed. It was empty for almost 18 months after Einstein left.

Ms. Stephanie is co-sponsoring a sandwich this month at my falafel shop! Apparently they are going to have a new chef sponsoring a sandwich every month. Interesting. Tough to keep up that pace though. Anyway, we used to go to her restaurant, Scylla, pretty often. Good eating. Then she made it big by winning Top Chef one season and closed Scylla. She opened a new place, Girl and The Goat, and it's nearly impossible to get in. Good for her!

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Hiccups and booze

Last night, Ricardo, Bill the Bear, Smitty and I went to the Cubs game thanks to tickets acquired by Ricardo. Good seats down the third base line. We met up at Bernie's (a bar by Wrigley) for drinks before hand and I had two beers. After getting to the game, I think I had another two beers, so at this point it was four beers in about four hours. No big deal. After the game though, we hit the bars (actually just two) and I had way too much to drink over the next three hours. We did have fun though!!

The first place we hit after the game was Raw Bar where the guys got two plates of oysters. I say "the guys" because that's the last thing I'm looking for after a night of drinking. After Raw Bar, we headed to Nisei Lounge which was relatively uncrowded and had a pool table. Much pool was played and beer drank. When I left Bill and Ricardo around 1, I was tipsy but only had to walk a few blocks so it wasn't a big deal. LL was in bed of course and I woke her up which I didn't feel good about. Then the hiccups started. Ugh. It's rare that I get them but when I do, they are bad. One year I had them for three days!! They would stop when I went to sleep and start the minute I woke up. Ugh.

Last night they kept going until about 4:30 in the morning, so needless to say today I'm exhausted. Since I was shaking the bed with the hiccups, I went down to my computer and then tried to sleep on the sofa. No fun.

Back to the game. About an inning after we sat down, in walked some ex-coworkers and sat a few rows in front of me. One of them was from Australia and we were trying to find a time to have her meet LL while she was in town. Good fun! So I knew four of that crowd plus the three with me plus two other friends of mine, JC and Mike, were at the game elsewhere in the stadium AND two gals with whom I used to play co-ed football were there too. Crazy that we'd all be at the same game on a random Tuesday night!!! It WAS one of the first nice weather night games though.