Sunday, January 21, 2007

Coming In From The Bullpen

Well it seems that Odds and Sods have been rightfully reunited over at Sean Kilkelly’s blog, so therefore, we must move forward. Thus coming in from the bullpen, to the strains of “Enter Sandman” (borrowed from Billy Wagner), is our old friend “Off the Bench.”

Speaking of friends, Ricky Fritsch went to Las Vegas. It doesn’t have the same ring as “Mr. Smith Goes To Washington”, but it might. Ricky in Vegas, on business, alone. I’m hoping what happens in Vegas doesn’t necessarily stay in Vegas.

By now you must have seen that Captain Carpetbagger has borrowed from the book of Kennedy. Yes, Hillary Rodham Clinton, United States Senator from the state of New York (by way of Illinois and Arkansas) has announced that she is filing papers to form an exploratory…oh blah blah blah…she’s running for President, folks! As such, she follows Robert F. Kennedy, who was also a New York Senator (by way of Massachusetts, of course) and who also ran for President, and stood a mighty good chance of winning (some folks can’t let go of “Camelot”) before being assassinated.

Here on ye old Exit 55, “Captain Carpetbagger” is the worst thing that I will call Senator Clinton. I will not use Mr. Imus’ nickname for Mrs. Clinton (“Satan”, and no, not the hockey player pronunciation). I’ve made it quite clear how I feel about Mrs. Clinton, Dixie Chicks style, of course – “I am ashamed to be from the same state where Hillary Clinton and Chuck Schumer are my senators.” Doesn’t mean I don’t love the Empire State; just means that I don’t do a happy dance when thinking about the politicos here, is all.

Just when I mentioned to you that Montgomery Delaney was to perform in Irvington on February 3rd, I see in The Journal News that the show has been postponed. I’ve sent an email to Monty to find out more, and we’ll see what happens.

I thought my sleeping would improve after I resolved the job situation, but alas, I was enjoying some cinematic masterpiece on the couch at 4:15 this morning. I’m hoping that tonight will be the last rough night – since the job starts tomorrow. Some have commented that I don’t seem excited, and that’s not true. I’m just being overly cautious, and trying not to get wrapped up. I’d feel this way about any job.

I’ve spent large chunks of time since Thursday in various shopping enclaves. Don’t pity me – I normally enjoy it, and do it by choice. On Thursday, The Son and I headed off on an adventure. One of my favorite treats is the occasional Krispy Kreme doughnut. Now while I’ll eat the store-bought style, there’s nothing like the ones that come right off the production line. The Son likes watching them roll through the machines, so it’s a win-win. And before you begin the “now I see why you weigh so much” comments, stuff it. We rarely go. But since The Son was with me on Thursday, and it was getting pretty cold, I thought it would be kind of a roadtrip.

Fortunately, Krispy Kreme’s only nearby locations are in places like New York City, Long Island, Milford Connecticut, and Middletown New York. So Middletown (about a one-hour drive) was the winner. Ever drive somewhere, ready for a treat, only to discover that said outlet was closed? Out of business? Gone? Now ever try to explain that to a devastated four year-old? It seems Middletown is going through some pains. I noticed that their nearby shopping mall, The Galleria at Crystal Run, seemed to be in a bit of a transition. I’m not saying Middletown is a wasteland right now; I’m just saying the mall wasn’t jumping at peak-capacity.

Incidentally, The Son recovered quickly from his disappointment. It’s amazing how watching a garbage truck pick up and empty a dumpster will ease the preschool pain. Plus he got a Dunkin Donut later on. No, I didn’t have one. See? I was holding out for the good stuff.

Friday led me to the Palisades Center in West Nyack, New York. I am of the belief that the Pal is the only reason to go to Rockland in the first place, but what a place it is. (Not true - Bear Mountain State Park is in Rockland. I'm just being fresh) Yet after all was said and done, I bought almost nothing. Same can be said with Woodbury Common on Saturday. Woodbury is perhaps the largest outlet center in the world; popular enough that trips frequently run from Japan and the UK (and who knows where else?) explicitly to come to Woodbury Common. I did snag a couple of pairs of pants at the Gap outlet, but that’s about it. Sometimes we’re productive. This really wasn’t one of those times. If you could deal with the cold, it was a great day to go shopping there because the place was kind of barren (compared to a normal Saturday, when it’s like Disney World). We just couldn’t find the best deals.

Don’t feel sorry for us though. With the securing of a new job, that means we can go on our annual anniversary vacation. We started this tradition on the occasion of our 10th anniversary, in 2005, with a trip to Maine. We were going to be a little grander in 2006, but wound up back in Maine. Guess where we’re heading for 2007? Yep, back to Maine. The shopping is fine (LL Bean, my friends), the accommodations are awesome (The Harraseeket Inn), and the trip is easy – when it’s not snowing. We’re in Freeport, Maine within four to five hours, every time. Despite it being Red Sox country, I love it up there. It’s one of the few places that I would seriously consider relocating to at this point (that short list includes Richmond, Virginia and a couple of other places).

I’ll give you some more stuff on our Maine experiences some other time. There are stories to tell – mostly due to snow.

So the shopping tour continues today. Ever the good father, I’m meeting my sister at the Danbury Fair Mall so that The Son can go build a bear. That, for those of you who know such things, means I will probably be missing Da Bears and Da Saints, or at least a large part of it. I hope to watch the main event (Pats-Colts) later on.

Oh, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that the last post was number 55 for Exit 55! Yay for me…or whatever.

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