Miami…continued

I’m a little more rested than last night, so this posting should be=
a little more cohesive than the disjointed rambling of yesterday.
 
I woke up this morning determined to get a hair cut.  I stepped=
outside onto the still muggy streets and got yelled at my 50 motorcycle=
cops who were outside the hotel Obama is staying in, they told me I had=
to walk on the other side of the road.  I walked about 6 blocks and=
came to the realization that I was going to wrong way.  I turned aro=
und and walked by the motorcycle cops again and pushed forward into=
a strong steady wind, the kind of wind that only comes from traveling hun=
dreds of miles across an ocean, meeting resistance for the first time=
, I actually leaned forward a little when I walked. 
 
I made it about 2 and a half miles and found myself at a Super Cuts=
next to a Blockbuster video and a Dunkin Donuts, I definitely got a super=
cut, I look cool.
 
Grabbed a taxi back to Eden Roc.
 
My work colleague checked into his room and asked if my room had a be=
autiful view of the ocean, I said I had no idea that I was near the ocean,=
my view was of Collins Avenue and a canal.  I went up to his luxury=
suite and saw the ocean for the first time, I had no idea it was just on=
the other side of the hotel.  The water is an amazing turquise, the=
beach was really inviting, the weather is in the low 80’s but I’m stuck=
in conference meetings for the day.
 
Tonight I am going to Danny DeVito’s restaurant in South Beach, it is=
called DeVito’s.  I’ll hopefully have a review for you tomorrow.

 

Miami Beach

It has been a busy couple of months, extreme busy.  I was in Atl=
antic City this weekend, Ceasar’s Palace after a wedding.  I left my=
wallet at home by mistake, but still managed to lose $20.
 
The wedding was for Jaclyn’s cousin and the reception was held at an=
exquisite estate called the Carriage House in Galloway, NJ. The place loo=
ks just like the White House, take a look, here’s the website:  http://www.the-carriagehouse.com/=
 
Seriously, take a quick look at the site, the place looks like the Wh=
ite House, but cooler.
 
After the reception, Jac, Laurie, Lev, and another cousin Melissa all=
headed to AC.  A guy came up to me and handed me a cell phone and a=
piece of paper, I think he wanted me to dial the number on the paper, I=
wanted nothing to do with it.  My cell phone was out of power and my=
wallet was left at home in Warrington.  I was without money or a cel=
l phone, it was strangely liberating.
 
We took Winston to the beach at the adjacent town called Brigantine.&=
nbsp; Winston dug up some sea shells and then ran into the waves and drenc=
hed in the cold salty water.  He laughed, smiled, and just yelled wit=
h joy, he would have stayed in that water until the tides got tired, he wa=
s happy as a clam. 
 
Dalia enjoyed the sea gulls and the fresh sea breeze, these kids are=
something special, they just love the world, they love all the elements.

 
We stayed up late in AC, but were woken up early by the kids who were=
being watched by my sister.  I was exhausted on Sunday and fell asle=
ep by 9PM.
 
Today I had to flew to Miami, FL.  I return on Thursday evening.=
  It is hot and humid down here, about 80 degrees, when I exit air co=
nditioning, my glasses fog up like crazy and it takes awhile for the glass=
to adjust to this thick warm air. 
 
I had trouble getting to my hotel because Barack Obama is two hotels=
down from me at a fund raiser at the FountaineBleu hotel.  I’m at th=
e Eden Roc, it is very Miami, a cocktail of modern, beach, and industrial.=
  The lobby has clubby lounge music playing, I walked by the unrelent=
ing thumping and retired to my room.
 
Mohammad Ali marathon on ESPM Classic, I’ll fall asleep with that on=
the TV.
 
Good night. 
 
I loved my wife’s dress this weekend, she’s one momma!

Phillies Win Again

RKDeem Endorses:  RKDeem attending Phillies postseason games.&nb=
sp; I made it to my second Phillies Postseason Playoff game last night.&nb=
sp; In the two playoff games I have attended, the Phillies have racked up=
a combined 16-1 score.  With my track record, the Phils might want=
to secure me some tickets for the World Series (if we make it, yes, I sai=
d “we”!).
 
Jaclyn joined me this time and we had a lot of fun.  We stayed=
for the entire game, watched the fireworks after the final out, sang alon=
g with Harry Kalas to “High Hopes”, and Jaclyn gave her rally towel to a=
young fan in the audience. 
 
I didn’t eat dinner before yesterday’s game, I was saving my appetite=
for ballpark food.  I learned two things:
 
1.  If you are hungry and want a legitmate meal that will fill=
you up, I recommend heading to Bull’s Bar-b-que and getting a combo platt=
er.  I think the combo platter will set you back $12.75 but you get=
a Bull Dog (keilbasa on a roll), a roast beef or pork sandwich, and a cou=
ple of ribs.  The food is tasty and they have multiple lines so you=
don’t have to wait forever. 
 
2.  Jac and I snuck out during the top of the seventh and hit up=
Chickie’s & Pete’s at the end of Ashburn Alley for some crab fries wi=
th cheese.  This booth is always a mob scene, but we got there at the=
right time and didn’t have to deal with much of a line.  They charge=
$6 for a tub of crab fries and an additional $2 for their cheese. =
It’s expensive, but it is always packed so I guess they priced it right.&=
nbsp; Anyways, here’s the educational note that I’d like to pass along, th=
ink twice about purchasing the cheese on a cold night, the frigid temperat=
ure coagulates the cheese in a hurry, rendering it unusable. 
 
The game and wrapped up around midnight, we sat in a little traffic,=
and got home around 1AM.
 
Laurie came over to help watch the kids and to accommodate her, we mo=
ved Dalia’s crib into our bedroom. 
 
Around 6AM, Winston woke up crying, came running into our room asking=
for his blanket.  This woke up Dalia and now both kids were up and=
crying, kicking, spilling juice, and crawling in our bed. 
 
I am infusing caffeine into my system now, pretty tired, but wouldn’t=
trade it, last night was a great night with my wife.
 
We got some great pictures, we were right off the wall in right field=
, we’ll post sometime this week.

News Article – Riot

RKDeem Endorses:  This news article from today’s paper:

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – A woman being driven around in a rented limousi=
ne pulled up at a coat store and announced she’d won the lottery and would=
pay for everyone’s purchases, police said, but she ended up causing a rio=
t when customers realized it was a hoax.=20

Angry customers threw merchandise around and looted, leaving the stor=
e looking as though a hurricane had passed through it, police said.=20

Linda Brown was arrested Tuesday after an hours-long shopping spree=
that began when she hired a stretch Hummer limousine to drop her off at=
a Burlington Coat Factory store, police Sgt. Lt. Michael Deakins said. Br=
own walked to a cash register and loudly announced she had won the lottery=
and would pay for each person’s merchandise up to $500, he said.=20

“Well, of course, people like to hear that,” Deakins said. “Apparentl=
y they were in line calling relatives who were not at the store and told=
them to come.”=20

People flooded the registers as cashiers began ringing up purchase af=
ter purchase, but Brown had not yet paid the bill, Deakins said. At least=
500 people filled the aisles and another 1,000 were outside trying to get=
in, he said.=20

“She was telling people she won $1.5 million,” Deakins said. “But it=
ends up she didn’t win anything. She had no money to pay for anything.”=
=20

About an hour later, Brown had the limousine driver take her to a ban=
k to withdraw money, but she returned empty-handed, police Detective Steve=
n Nace said. By then, store employees had called in two dozen police offic=
ers to handle the crowds.=20

Shopper Candace Jordan said she told Brown she didn’t need clothes,=
she needed help paying her rent.=20

“And she said, ‘How much is it?'” Jordan told WBNS-TV. “And she promp=
tly wrote out a check.”=20

By the time employees realized Brown didn’t have any cash to pay, pol=
ice said, she already had taken off in the limo.=20

That’s when angry customers, realizing they weren’t getting free coat=
s, began throwing merchandise on the floor and grabbing clothes without pa=
ying for them, Nace said.=20

“Everybody was like, ‘I still want my free stuff,’ and that started=
the riot,” he said. “It looks like (Hurricane) Katrina went through the=
store.”=20

Police said they have no way of tracking down the customers who stole=
items and fled, but they’re reviewing surveillance video.=20

When the limousine driver realized he wasn’t going to be paid the $90=
0 Brown owed him for the day’s rental, he turned her in to police, Deakins=
said.=20

Brown, 44, was arrested on three outstanding warrants for aggravated=
menacing, misuse of a 911 system and causing false alarms. She was jailed=
late Wednesday, but no charges had been filed against her related to the=
coat store chaos pending a mental health evaluation.=20

Police said they didn’t know if Brown had a lawyer. No telephone numb=
er was listed under her name, and no one answered repeated phone calls at=
the Franklin County Jail.=20

A spokeswoman for Burlington Coat Factory, which is based in Burlingt=
on, N.J., and has more than 300 stores across the country, said late Wedne=
sday she couldn’t comment on the incident.

Getting Close To A Year

RKDeem Endorses:  Brushing your teeth, I have to go to the dentist today and not looking forward to it.

Carpooling

Winston at his first Phillies playoff game, he’s been to regular season games before

Winston waving the rally towel

Winston watched half the game through the seat in front of him

View from our seats

Dalia conquers Rock Band, Winston relaxes

Inside of Marsha Brown’s, its an old church, we ate in the balcony

Mother-in-law, mother, mother/wife

Great video of Dalia trying on Winston’s Halloween costume from last year


Birthday Recap

Yesterday’s birthday celebrations are going to be very memorable. 
 
Leaving work around 11:15AM to pick up my son and go to a ballgame is just a great day in itself.  We got to the game in plenty of time and just had a blast.  I’ll post pictures later this week or next week, but I have some great pictures of Winston and the atmosphere.  Winston ate a ton of popcorn, in fact, I think he ate pop corn nonstop for the first 4 innings.  There were fireworks during the National Anthem and he loved it, he did not love that I sang along with the National Anthem, maybe he’s embarrassed by me already.  He kept shouting, “Stop It!  Stop It!  Stop It!” during the National Anthem, I stopped singing and he relented, he’s not much of a patriot. 
 
Winston loved the slow clap………clap……..clap……..clap…….clap……clap…..clap….clap…clap..clap.clap.clap.clap.clap!clap!clap!
 
Winston waved the rally towel, hit the man next to us, but he loved Winston’s enthusiasm. 
 
When people screamed in support of the Phillies, Winston would scream too.
 
I loved the game, the atmosphere, the intensity of every at bat, the victory, the anxiety of every pop fly in the 45 MPH winds, it was a blast. 
 
Mission accomplished, Winston got a flavor for the ballgame and I finally got to see a Phillies game from a seat this year (I went with work once, but the seats weren’t that close to the field, the Phillies lost, and I was distracted with work stuff).
 
Winston fell asleep in the car, peaceful ride home as I listened to the final outs being recorded on 1210AM radio.  No traffic at all.
 
Ate pizza!
 
Opened presents from very thoughtful people.  My wife spoiled me and got me something that she knows I’ll love and something that will definitely keep me busy, she got me Beatles Rock Band for the Xbox 360.  My Xbox 360 was in storage, so I was disappointed that I wouldn’t be able to play it right away, but Jaclyn was a step ahead and had the Xbox 360 ready for me.  I missed my video games so much, it was wonderful to play again, I stayed up to midnight jamming out to the Beatles. 
 
I’m still decent on the guitar, but I’m terrible with the drums, I’ll be decent on the drums by October 31st, that is my goal. 
 
Laurie and Lev gave me a wonderful sampling of beers and a gift card to Borders.  My sister gave me a framed Bob Dylan photo with a terrific quote of his:  All I can do is be me, whoever that is.

Birthday

Today is my birthday.  Not very big into presents, I mean, I like presents, but I’m more into the celebration.  I think my favorite part of my birthday is how Jaclyn lets me expand it into “Birthday Week” and she’s extra nice to me all week.  This Birthday Week has been off to a great start with a trip to the bar on Monday and today I plan on seeing the Phillies in game 1 of the playoffs. Tonight I think I’ll get home to some cake and blow out some candles.  31 candles is too much.  As for what I’ll wish for, here’s a quick list of things that come to mind:
 
1.  I wish that the last season of LOST is awesome!
2.  I wish that I catch a foul ball today (but that is wishing for something in the past, this is like credit card wishing)
3.  I wish that the Bulldogs win a consecutive championship this Fall
4.  I wish that I get hired by this pharmaceutical company as a full-time employee
5.  I wish that once I am hired we can finally buy a house that my family can call home
6.  I wish that Dalia starts sleeping through the night
7.  I wish that my wife somehow starts to appreciate fantasy football instead of despising it
8.  I wish that I can see Away We Go, Diving Bell & the Butterfly, and Observe & Report on DVD in the near future
9.  I wish that I can see A Serious Man at the movie theater
10.  I wish that my family always stays fun, passionate, energetic, and exciting.  I may be getting old, but my portfolio is getting younger and it makes me feel young too. 
 
How does it feel to be 31?  I still feel like I’m learning, I still feel young vs. old, I feel madly in love with my wife, I still feel energized, and I feel really happy with where I am, but even more excited about where we’re heading. 
 
Go Phillies!