Saturday, September 22, 2007

We have a problem!

Amelia now knows to smile for the camera. I can only get natural shots 20% of the time now...

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Greatest Generation

A few days ago Kim and I went to a fund raiser at the invitation of my parents. There was going to be entertainment by one of the best jazz accordion/organ players around named Don Komar. There were two seating/shows one at 3pm and one at 6. Mom and Dad chose the 3pm show. The shows starts with an older couple, He playing the accordion and she singing. They broke out so many old songs many I have never heard but obviously the rest of the room had. He spoke of when he was a teenager during the war and the patriotism that all his family and friends had. I looked around the room and a few things struck me. First of all Kim was the youngest person in the room, then me. At our table were 3 other couples, 2 of them getting ready for their 60th anniversary (including my folks). The agreeing nods shared by many people in the room to the stories of the 40's and 50's was very neat to see, or should I say "swell" I read the book by Brokaw The Greatest Generation and have always been drawn to the 40's, the music, the cars, the clothes... Were the old people in that room really that different from me or am I just witnessing maturity in action? On the East coast Mark's grandmother was doing her part for the war effort but not typical behavior for a young girl. Kim pointed out that maybe when these folks were our age they may have thought like us. I am most definitely in a different frame of mind than when I was 20. Interesting thought process. I was also a wee bit jealous of the bond all these people had. Soon after that I realized we were eating dinner at 4:30pm. Home soaking our feet by 6:30 and asleep by 8. Holy crap! We became old in one afternoon!

Here's a tune from Don Komar Samba De Orfeu

Friday, September 14, 2007

What a hobby

Meet Carlos Chavez.

Carlos was my partner for the past 4 days on the road. You learn a lot about a guy trapped in a truck, driving across the country. This guy has one of the most unique hobby's I have ever heard of. Memorizing genealogy, now I know you are saying "Doug many people do genealogy" but this guy does royal blood lines. He can sit down and write a family tree of complete ancient European blood lines. He showed me papers that had hundreds of names on them, from English to French to Italian to Flemmish, yada yada...all memorized. He then pulls out his latest task. Japanese blood lines from 1100 on. Those are not memorized yet but he's working on them. His dream was to be a history teacher then he realized he really doesn't like kids.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

The young'n

I was able to sit for the wee one tonight. In rare form I broke the camera out. She was good for about 5 shots then became very annoyed with my flash.
You choose which picture she lost it on...

A big goob in the Big Apple

I just got home from a 4 day trip to NYC to produce a show for the "the company". No not that "company" but I think these guys could have me killed or at least bored to death.
(a video locked up during a demo, wanted to offer my Mac so it would work. I didn't I behaved) Take the worst Chicago traffic and multiply that time 3. I can't believe how horrible Manhattan traffic is. A messenger bike guy darted in front of me and I almost hit him, he just smiled and yelled "MAYBE NEXT TIME!" I was hoping he would come back and give me another chance. We unload the truck and Scott takes the truck 6 blocks away to a lot that charges 160 per day to park there. The operator casually pointed to the tip can. Scott taking the hint, places a 20 in the can and magically the rate dropped to 90 dollars. Gotta love a deal? NYC is so busy, I'm convinced that all other cities are cow towns. Leaving yesterday I hit the Lincoln tunnel by 3:30pm. I was in bumper to bumper traffic for the next 1.5 hours and only moved 14 miles. Nuts I tell ya NUTS!
I decided to set my iPod to play alphabetically for my trip home. I let the songs just play. I had no idea how many songs I never have heard have been sitting patiently just waiting for me to listen to them. As I drove by Toledo I had to sit through 4 versions of "Blue Christmas" man that sucked, all 4 are now deleted. Need to go through and get rid of many more...

Monday, September 3, 2007

Whisky Vs. Whiskey

The history of spirits made from malted grain is long and varied. The pride and passion from different regional distilleries is amazing. Never get caught calling Scotch a whiskey, huh? It's a whisk(y) Only Scotch is spelled with just a "y". Irish, Canadian even American Bourbon is spelled with an (ey). Now. Bourbon is only allowed to be called Bourbon if it is distilled in Kentucky. Most people see the word Bourbon and they instantly think of Jack Daniels, not Bourbon. Jack is Tennessee Whiskey. Very good just not Bourbon. So where do I fall on all of this? I love and appreciate the passion of all the masters of the art. Now I am not going to get into the bad side of how liquor has ruined many lives. I have fortunately been able to escape the addictive side of "the drink" So my eh hem, "research" has been only to find the best of the best and comment on my findings so you don't have to risk becoming a lush in your own pursuit, yeah right. The following reviews are what I have gravitated towards (so far)
If I am out and am in the mood for a drink, most of the time I will lean towards Bourbon. I have had everything from Basil Hayden's to Wild Turkey. My top choice is Woodford Reserve. I think the balance is just about as perfect as a Bourbon can get. Next would be Pappy Van Winkle Family Reserve, Makers Mark, Knobb Creek. There are hundreds of Bourbons and more "micro-distilleries" on the horizon.
ahhh... the beloved smoked malt know as Scotch. Scotch Whisky is an acquired taste. As soon as the grain germinates, it is smoked over peat fires to dry before mashed up and fermented. If you have a Scotch from the Isles of Scotland the peat can take on a ocean flavor. Highland Scotches can be a little more pleasing to the pallet.
Good Scotch is spendy so my experience is limited but Linkwood has risen to the top of my list. Balvenie, Linkwood, Talisker, Lagavulin are all fine Scotches and the great thing is there hundreds more. I look forward to rich people letting me try more...ha.
Irish Whiskey:
Irish whiskey dries it's malt in hot air kilns so there is no smoky taste. Some feel it had a cleaner taste, others say if it's not Scottish..."It's CRAP" I think there's a place for all styles in this world depending on what you're in the mood for. Most people recognize either Jameson or Bushmills. Oddly enough they are both owned by the same company. I have a great 21 year old bottle of Bushmills aged in Port, Bourbon and Sherry Barrels. What a wonderful sweet aftertaste it has. Redbreast is an amazing everyday whiskey. Connemera is one Irish that smokes it's malt so it's a Whiskey that tastes like a Whisky...oy.
Man this was tiring, I need a beer.
(I'll finish the links later)