Creative marketing, branding, advertising, design & social media for @KaseyaCorp. Always ON. Sometimes I go out and play.
I am @krow272
Sneak preview opening night. The Wolf Pack rides again! (@ Cobb Downtown 16 Theatre - @cobbtheatres) http://t.co/L3QS3H8vIp
Tri-Rail Conductor: no need to continue laying on horn at crossing where we've been stopped for 2 mins. and you're going 5 mph. We see you!
Tryin' a new spot (new to me)... don't get to Northwood area enough. (@ Sports Page) http://t.co/jH5wtV5ZCD
The Morning Krow is out! http://t.co/JzcR0fpMtQ
To reply all or not to reply all, that is the question. NO, it isn't the question. Just don't. Hardly ever. Almost never. #SayNoToReplyAll
Into The Darkness (@ Cobb Downtown 16 Theatre - @cobbtheatres for Star Trek Into Darkness w/ 3 others) http://t.co/XCTvBoy0AE
Gotta love going to pay a ticket only to realize that you paid it 2 months ago. Glad it was only a 5 min. wait. http://t.co/f2uRDaELBc
Old Chevy... not sure about that peppermint candy paint job. http://t.co/0wkBFTBtwA
@ComcastWill Back to surfing! Thanks!
The Interwebs are down in the 33410 area. At least it's not a torrential downpour out also! Oh wait. @ComcastCares
68 miles... yup, that just happened! @ Riverbend Park http://t.co/l8ANgia1pT
54 miles... Home stretch (@ Palmetto Trailhead) http://t.co/KPknNPzvnz
Refuel after 38 miles. (Cordon Bleu Wrap @ Kocomo's Island Grill) http://t.co/5lx0e5IRL8
Epic ride (CFFIT trial)... wish us luck @ Riverbend Park http://t.co/kzh6mHYKDP
Alright Wahlberg... Rock... be funny, dammit! (@ Cobb Downtown 16 Theatre - @cobbtheatres for Pain & Gain) http://t.co/jOUsFXFANH
Post.Ride.Hot.Tubbin. @ Krowman Bath http://t.co/dLYMDjYFkO
Good 2 laps at either 7 miles or 10 miles - the GPS have differing opinions. Now gotta get my mayorship back!!! http://t.co/A9Vkw0IN90
After 2 airports (twice each), 2300 miles, 2 hrs in a car... one Wild Blueberry beer (with real… http://t.co/iYv7GQOj7N
Something uncomfortable about American Airlines headrests - maybe it's the old MD80? http://t.co/ZiznQpLZi3
19 hours ago in Palm Beach Gardens, FL
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@Pittsburgh Paints (1959 W 9th St)26 hours ago
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@Yard House (11701 Lake Victoria Gardens Ave)2 days ago
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@North County Government Center (3188 Pga Blvd)3 days ago
@Mrs. Smokeys Real Pit BBQ (1460 10th St)3 days ago
@BP (7245 N Military Trl)3 days ago
@Riverbend Park (9060 W Indiantown Rd)3 days ago
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@Kocomo's Island Grill (7080 Seminole Pratt Whitney Rd)4 days ago
@Kocomo's Island Grill (7080 Seminole Pratt Whitney Rd)4 days ago
@Riverbend Park (9060 W Indiantown Rd)4 days ago
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@Yard House (11701 Lake Victoria Gardens Ave)4 days ago
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...and you'll never work another day in your life. Recently, I've been spending most of my time trying to bend and fold time - it's not as easy as it sounds.
Monday through Friday morning trying to grunt the time to go by faster, just to get to the weekend. Then from Friday night through Sunday, trying to backspin the Earth enough to slow time down. What I'm noticing is that overall, time seems to be going by faster than ever.
I know they say as you get older, the time (years) seems to go by faster and amazingly it's true. However, I'm not so sure that it's the perception based on the beholder's age, but rather their state of mind.
Time flies when you're having fun, but sometimes accelerates out of control when you aren't. Yes, I'm approaching 40, but that doesn't really bother me. What does, is that I've been unfulfilled with my career accomplishments for quite a while. Don't get me wrong, I'm good at what I do, I make a good living and have helped grow revenue for all of the companies that have employed me. But, it isn't what I've WANTed to do.
I want to build something. I want to live and die (benefit or suffer) because of the business decisions I make. I started as an entrepreneur back in '94 and have been trying to get back to it since '97. Because of that beginning, every company I've worked for has benefited from my treating them as if they were my own. Their budget as if it came out of my own pocket. The revenue as if it meant whether my kids would eat. The direction as my future depended on it.
What I've had to deal with though is road blocks from other opinions, vetoes, and watching my efforts and hard work pay off into the pocket of someone else. It's not just about money, but security, independence and leaving something for my family (maybe that is the age talking).
Well, I'm at the point where I have a few irons in the fire but 'in this economy' (as they say - now hating that cliche) do you walk away from the security of the paycheck and health coverage? The better my compensation, the harder it is to walk away and less satisfied I become. (I know there are many without jobs right now, but this is simply my story - everyone has one)
Reading spot-on blogs like this one from Lisa Barone, Outspoken Media, just makes me want to stop strangers in the street and ask them to give me a swift kick in the ass.
Fear sucks! Pull the damn trigger already (or quit bitching).
Gina isn't feeling well, so we got Chinese take-out - mango chicken and brown rice for me if you're interested. She doesn't like fortune cookies - I do. It's always funny though that we only ordered two meals and they gave us five cookies.
I, of course, ate all of them.
1. Declare peace every day.
2. A truly great person never puts away the simplicity of a child.
3. A lifetime of happiness lies ahead of you.
4. Ambition is the incentive that makes purpose great and achievement greater.
5. You are never too old to dream. Dreams bring hopes.
So... which one counts? All of them? Or is it the first one I opened, do they cancel each other out or only the last one. Did Miss Manners ever do a segment on fortune cookie etiquette?
Of course, each was read in the following manner:
1. Declare peace every day in bed. (I try every morning, but still have to get up)
2. A truly great person never puts away the simplicity of a child in bed. (Hmmm, that one is just creepy)
3. A lifetime of happiness lies ahead of you in bed. (YES!!)
4. Ambition is the incentive that makes purpose great and achievement greater in bed. (always try harder)
5. You are never too old to dream. Dreams bring hopes in bed. (so true)
Okay, so I have OCD and I'm also anal-retentive, so I crave order and routine.
I have a couple of blogs, but never find time to post anything.
I buy a lot of books and rarely get to read them.
I always have a list of things to do, some of those I actually get done. Why? Because there's a list, a plan. That works for me (somewhat), so now I need to bring that principal to get into a consistent routine AND get more done.
• Write Blog Post/Ideas (don't need to post every day but at least work on ideas)
• Read (get through the books, magazines and online content that piles up waiting for my attention)
• Design (anything - I have many ideas)
• Work (yeah, have to make time for that too)
• Socialize (emails, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn - it's something I do that needs a timeframe for the stopping point, otherwise it's all I do)
• Meditate (relax, think OR don't think, reboot and recharge)
• Family (have to make time for the family - kids grow too fast and life is too short)
Now, I just need to designate when it makes the most sense to do what.
But that's for another day...
BTW... I'm also a procrastinator - that doesn't help either. *sigh
I have a problem - but I'm getting better. I used to drive 30,000 miles per year consistently, and I was averaging a speeding ticket every 6 months, also consistently. Luckily, the points were spread out enough to avoid the 12 points in 12 months license suspension, but my insurance rate takes a beating. I've only been able to reduce my driving down to 25,000 per year, but more importantly in the last three years, I've cut down the tickets to about 15 month intervals - not great, but a definite improvement.
I always notice the Fraternal Order of Police Supporter bumper/window stickers or license plate badges and wonder about them. I would wager that 90% of the people who display them are just hoping for leniency should they get stopped. Of course, they all say that no special considerations will be given to FOP donors, but I wonder.
The scam of the whole thing (by the FOP) is that they put a year on them. That way no one receives any (non-existent) special considerations for more than the year they donated. If you want to continue to be looked upon favorably, you need to keep up your stream of contributions, because if you get stopped with a 3 year old sticker... you're getting a ticket!
Maybe the cost of the contribution would be worth it, but the police believe that "size matters". You can start with a $25 donation, but it will only get you a sticker and a wallet card. Wallet card? "Sure officer, here's my driver's license and insurance card... oh, I'm sorry, did my FOP Supporter card get stuck in with those? Oops!" Or, you can avoid having to be so shameless and spend the $55 and it will add the nice silver shield that should be more obvious to an approaching officer on the side of I-95. Lastly, you can drop the $75 to have your shield in eye-catching gold that screams: I love the police and respect everything they do! (READ: Please don't ticket me.)
I thought this was interesting:
"Although the Florida State Fraternal Order of Police is recognized as a non-profit organization by the IRS, because of its particular status [501(c)8], donations are not tax-deductible as charitable contributions for Federal income tax purposes."
I know the best answer is abstinence (from speeding), but we all know how easy that is to subscribe to with other issues. But if I had the $75 gold badge prominently displayed and the officer began to write me a ticket - I'd probably spend a night in the clink.
Recently, I wrote about Zach Thomas' leaving the Miami Dolphins and joining the Dallas Cowboys. In that article, I purported that whenever Zach did retire, he would be a first-ballot Hall of Famer. This sparked several discussions and differing opinions—no one thought he didn’t deserve it, just whether or not he would be enshrined. So, I decided to investigate the practices of the selection committees and those at his position already in the Hall.
This year the Pro Football Hall of Fame will induct six more players on August 5th, bringing the total number of inductees to 221 since 1963. Of these 221, there are 18 that are listed as Linebackers. Almost all of them average the same individual accolades that speak to their success at the position. The averages of the group are that they each had eight All-Pro selections, seven Pro Bowl appearances and played in 161 games. Though the most important stat seems to be having won either a Championship or Super Bowl—depending on the era.
There are three exceptions to these averages:
Dave Wilcox (H.O.F. Class of 2000) played 11 seasons with the San Francisco 49ers. He was selected as an All-Pro in eight of those seasons and sent to the Pro Bowl seven times. He has the distinction as the only linebacker in the Hall of Fame to have never played in a Championship or Super Bowl.
Andre Tippett (due to be inducted this year) was selected as an All-Pro and to the Pro Bowl a few less than the average with five each and played in 151 games over his 14 seasons with the New England Patriots (’82-’93). But, besides Wilcox, he’s the only other linebacker to not win a Championship, though his team did lose Super Bowl XX.
The other standout was Chuck Noll (H.O.F. Class of 1993). Most people probably remember Mr. Noll for coaching the Pittsburgh Steelers to four Super Bowl victories (IX, X, XIII, XIV), but he’s in the Hall as a linebacker without ever being selected as an All-Pro or making a Pro Bowl appearance. In addition to coaching four Super Bowl teams, he also played in four Championship games (’53, ’54, ’55, ’57) during his seven years with the Cleveland Browns—winning two of those.
So what does this tell us about the parameters for entering the Pro Football Hall of Fame? While it appears that individual accomplishments count a great deal, it seems that The Ring is really the key for entry. There seems to be little in the way of written guidelines or outlined requirements to even be eligible for the vote. The closest expression of these are listed on the Hall of Fame’s website:
- Candidates are scrutinized for “strong enough credentials to give them even a remote chance of eventual Hall of Fame election.”
- “When elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, an individual is recognized for his accomplishments as a player, coach, or contributor.”
This would seem to favor individual achievements over Championship and Super Bowl wins which are “team” accomplishments. I would think that the selection committee, made up of mostly sportswriters, would realize more than anyone the ever-increasing challenge of winning a championship. The number of teams, the number of games played, the level of talent and the competitive parody in the league have all increased, making it more difficult to win a championship, not to mention performing consistently above average in individual statistics.
Consider this, on this year's ballot was LB Derrick Thomas, his 4th time on the ballot since his first year of eligibility in 2005 after his untimely death as of a result of complications from a car accident in 2000. Derrick received the 2nd most votes of those not selected this year behind WR Cris Carter. In his eleven years with the Kansas City Chiefs (’89-’99), playing in 169 games, he was selected as an All-Pro eight times and appeared in nine Pro Bowls. These stats are above the averages of the other linebackers in the Hall, but he never got the chance to play in a Super Bowl. Will this keep him out of the Hall? He had more All-Star and Pro Bowl selections and games played that Tippett. Did Tippett’s Super Bowl loss carry enough weight to get him inducted or was it the actual 15-year ‘wait’?
Let’s take another case study. Ray Lewis is heading into his 13th season as a linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens. He’s amassed seven All-Pro selections, nine Pro Bowl appearances and played in 162 games (so far). He has two other factors in his favor toward enshrinement—his team won Super Bowl XXXV and he plays for a team that currently has no players representing it in the Hall of Fame. The Baltimore Ravens have been a franchise since 1996 and is one of only three active franchises without representation in the Hall—the other two are the Jacksonville Jaguars (since 1995) and the Houston Texans (since 2002).
Now, back to the original reason for this entire harangue.
Compared to the Hall of Fame linebacker’s averages, Zach Thomas has seven each of All-Pro selections and Pro Bowl appearances after 168 games. He racked up over 100 tackles in his first 11 seasons and was in the Top 4 in tackles six of the last seven years. He has more tackles than any other linebacker in the Hall and is 4th all-time with over 1,800 tackles behind only Randy Gradishar, Jessie Tuggle and Junior Seau—all of which, have been to, but never won, a Super Bowl. Will any of them be inducted?
So, what’s the conclusion? Zach Thomas obviously has the credentials and above average statistics to rank among those already in the Hall and even all of the linebackers that have ever played the game. So, though he’s already earned his place, he’s probably going to need a Super Bowl to guarantee his enshrinement. And though he’ll always be a Miami Dolphin at heart, hopefully going home to Texas will put the cherry on top of all of his career of Sundays.
There are currently no Punters in the Hall of Fame. Maybe Jeff Feagles should be the first? He’s now 42 years old, fresh off the New York Giants’ surprising win over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLI and he just signed on to play his 6th season with New York—which is his 21st overall. WOW! He owns the record for the most career punts (1,585) and career punting yards (65,793 and counting). He was selected as an All-Pro and voted to the Pro Bowl in the ’95 season. With those stats and accolades, plus now having a Super Bowl victory under his belt (or kicking shoe), I think he’s earned the right to be the first to represent his position in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
As a lifelong Miami Dolphins fan and season ticket holder, that hurts to say.
Zach Thomas is a Dallas Cowboy...
Nope! Still doesn't sound right.
There's some solace that he went to an NFC team rather than the division rival, New England Patriots.
All the teams he met with made him an offer.
Well, of course they did, with this resume:
- Led the Miami Dolphins in tackles in 10 of his 12 seasons;
- Over 100 tackles in his first 11 seasons;
- Top 4 in tackles in 6 of the last 7 season;
- Selected as an All-Star 7 times;
- Voted to the Pro Bowl 7 times (most by any Dolphins defensive player;
- More tackles than any other linebacker in the Hall of Fame;
- 4th All-Time with over 1,800 tackles
- He's also tallied 18.5 sacks, 17 interceptions (4 for touchdowns), 13 forced fumbles and 7 fumble recoveries
Not bad for a 5th round draft pick (154th overall) from the small town of Pampa, TX (est. 2006 population = 17,000). After high school he traveled an entire 2 1/2 hours away to college at Texas Tech in Lubbock, where he set a school record of 20 tackles in a single game.
Now that his tenure with the Miami Dolphins ended abruptly on February 14 (Valentine's Day - a heartbreaker for all true Fins Fans), he'll be returning to his home state and playing just 6 hours from his home town.
Both New England and New Orleans also offered him a contract, but in the end, he chose the familiar over the "New" accepting a 1 year deal with the Dallas Cowboys worth $3 million. The deal reportedly includes a $1M signing bonus, $1M salary and $1M in incentives based on achieved playing time.
I know he was due over $5M, but it's surprising that when he and Bill Parcells met, they couldn't come to a more cap-friendly restructured contract similar to the deal he signed with Dallas. He's given Miami all he ever had and would continue as long as he could as was still evident in his post-release comments, "I am healthy and look forward to playing in 2008, but will always consider myself a Miami Dolphin."
But we just cut him? He had nothing left we could use? It doesn't make sense.
But what makes less sense is a player wanting to spend the twilight of his career with a team going through its 3rd rebuild in 4 years, that just went 1-15 and hasn't been to the playoffs since 2001? I think Bill did him the favor of looking like the bad guy and simply cut him, allowing him to find a more potential playoff team to join without looking like he was quitting on the Fins.
I like and respect Zach and even if this hypothesis is true and I hope he gets a championship and hold no ill will toward this thinking. He spent 12 years being the epitome of a loyal team player, he's afforded the right to think of completing his personal career goals.
Sure to be a first ballot Hall Of Famer (more on this in a future post), I look forward to seeing his statue in front of Dolphins Stadium flanking the main entry at Gate G opposite Dan Marino - perhaps by then he'll have the ring that unfortunately eluded Marino.
So, it only took me three and half months to go through 950 photos from our trip to London / Barcelona, but at least it's done. I was able to whittle the photos down to 500+ and get them loaded on to my Flickr account and separated into Collections and Sets. Flickr is an amazing resource - I so hope it doesn't fall into Microsoft's hands through a Yahoo! purchase.
Anyway, now everyone can get a visual tour of our journey.
Day 1: Cemetary. Very cool, more serene than creepy. Interesting reading the tombstone inscriptions and dates. Biggest crows and squirrels I ever seen.
Day 2: Albert Memorial statue. Incredible depiction of the continents (Asia, Africa, America, Europe), the useful arts (architecture, engineering, manufacturing) and 169 individual composers, architects, poets, painters, and sculptors. The Queen "We Will Rock You" show was a lot of fun too.
Day 3: Seeing the Dolphins vs. Giants game at Wembley Stadium was awesome (despite the only rainy weather of our trip)
Day 4: Tower Bridge. Throughout Europe, seeing the older architecture/construction that adds so many aesthetic/artistic features (columns, sculptures, monuments, etc.). It's a shame that that seems to have been lost here in the US - even churches are now just simple CBS/stucco construction.
Day 5: Bath & Stonehenge. Again, amazing architecture/engineering (Roman baths) in a remote little town - awesome spa treatments ;-). And Stonehenge is probably one of the most intriquing sites in the World (IMHO).
Day 6: Westminster Abbey. You could spend hours discovering, reading and listening (handy audio tour) everything throughout that place. Shame they don't allow photography - at least allow non-flash/video. I also really liked Cleopatra's Needle (1 of 3) along the Thames.
Day 1: Las Ramblas. Crowded street full of tourists, street performers and pick pockets.
Day 2: Figueres/Girona. Unfortunately, the train station was confusing. No one speaks English. The Dali Museum was closed by the time we got there.
Day 3: Ancient remains and Roman aqueduct of Tarragona; the medieval walled city of MontBlanc; the Monastir de Poblet; and the beautiful oceanfront city of Sitges.
Day 4: Montserrat. Beautiful mountain range, shame that the monastery is so commercialized now. Need to plan to spend most of your time seeing the art along the trails. Barcelona soccer game - Ronaldinho is amazing! Glad they don't allow smoking in US stadiums.
Day 5: Gaudi's Sagrada Familia and Parc Guell. Quite a body of artistic architecture.
Day 6: Museo de Picasso. Hard to find hidden in back alleys, but well worth the search.
Day 7: Monument do Colom.
We woke up on Saturday morning and went downstairs for breakfast. We then jumped on the Circle Line and then took it to High Street/Kensington, heading toward Kensington Palace. First we stopped at an American Express Exchange to cash in some travelers checks - nothing like getting a 2.17 exchange rate, that means our money is worth LESS than half when converted into British Pounds. UGH!
From there we walked past St. Mary's Church making our way to Kensington Palace. Walking around Kensington Palace around the park side past the Orangery Restaurant and the Sunken Gardens. Then making our way through the heart of the park past the Round Pond, the Steke Monument (Spire) and the statue of a guy on a horse called Physical Energy.
We then made our way to the gilded Prince Albert Memorial dedicated to him, the British Empire and all of its interests. This is an amazing statue that could be a social studies lesson in itself with all of the historical vignette carvings and statuettes. Just across the street is the impressive Royal Albert Hall auditorium. Then back into the park, past the Princess Diana Fountain, which was more of a continuously flowing wandering loop. Across the Serpentine river, past the Reformers Tree (a rock mosaic of a tree) and on to Speakers Corner (no one was on the soapbox). Across the way is the former London's central gallows, now known as the Marble Arch.
We headed down Park Lane then into the neighborhood past Grosvenor Chapel, down Audley to Curzon and into the Shepherd Market zone - lots of Lebanese restaurants here. We found a cozy little authentic British pub, Ye Grapes, that had a full Thai menu... huh? Thai? Odd juxtaposition.
Leaving there we started to get a few sprinkles but they didn't last long. Wondering around we came across the hotel where the Miami Dolphins were staying - pretty cool. We then checked out the Wellington Arch and made our way to Westminster Cathedral (not Abbey or even near it). There was an abortion protest that had just finished as they arrived back at the cathedral for mass. Then on to Buckingham Palace and down The Mall through St. James Park. Winding up at Admiralty Arch and on into Trafalgar Square/Lord Nelson's Column. From there we proceeded down Whitehall, past Downing Street and ending our day's walk across from Parliament/Big Ben and St. Margaret's Church.
After rushing back to the room to grab a quick shower and change, we then took the Piccadilly to Leicester Square, picking up our show tickets and heading to the Dominion Theatre for Queen's We Will Rock You. The show was awesome! Great music, funny... would love to see it in New York to see the different as they add several "local" aspects to the show.
After a long day of walking, we wrapped it up by going into China Town (Soho) and having a nice dinner and bottle of Shiraz at the Golden Dragon. Sleep and 'off our feet' were quite welcome that night.
Well, the day finally arrives! Gina and I catch our British Airways flight (BA 206) - how appropriate. The flight was uneventful (the best kind) and we arrived at London's Heathrow at 6:35 am. While in line for Passport control/immigration, we met Billie Applegate who was also flying over for the game. She is Sirius satellite radio's "Any NFL Game Anywhere Sweepstakes" winner. She's a Dolphins season ticket holder that also got to choose any game for every week this season - how cool is that! She's going to see 22 regular season NFL games plus a couple of NCAA games whenever there's a good one where she's traveling to.
Bhavesh (my UK sales guy) came to pick us up at the airport. Before leaving we grabbed some breakfast at Garfunkels in the airport. We then made a quick trip to High Street (first of many) to change some dollars into British Pounds at some ridiculous rate of 2.15 USD per 1 GBP. Ouch!
After checking into the Mayflower Hotel in the Earl's Court area of Kensington, we decided to check out the neighborhood. We ended up walking to the St. Mary's church and then a stroll through an expansive and very old Brompton Cemetary.
We then bought our Oyster Cards which gave us the unlimited opportunity to Mind The Gap in the Underground (the Tube). We rode the Piccadilly line to Piccadilly Circus area, then strolled around through Leicester and Trafalgar Square then down Whitehall past 10 Downing St. to Parliament. Big Ben looks great at night... all lit up. After going across Westminster Bridge and walking north again past the London Eye and then across on the Golden Jubilee Bridge back toward Leicester Square.
We found a "discount" show ticket outlet where we purchased tix for Saturday night's showing of Queen's We Will Rock You. We then grabbed some dinner at a Spaghetti House restaurant near Leicester Square before calling it a day.
T-minus 1 week and counting until the wife and I jet off to London. The destination was chosen because the NFL decided to hold a regular season game there to promote the League to a global audience. Interestingly, the announcement of the game being brought to the UK was followed by the announcement that the NFL Europa league would be closed. NFL Europa began in 1991 as the World League of American Football, with 10 teams competing in North America and Europe. After a two-year hiatus (1993-94) following the 1992 season, the league returned in 1995 as a six-team, all-European venture, with five teams in Germany since 2005, and has existed in that format through its final season in 2007. With 5 teams in Germany and the sixth being Amsterdam, I'm not sure "Europa" was the appropriate naming, perhaps NFL Rhine (as in Rhine Valley Region).
I think Ricky Williams' career could have really flourished if he were on the Amsterdam Admirals.
Anyway, back to NFL US... of course the game they chose to hold in London, was a Miami Dolphins home game vs. the New York football Giants. I'm a season ticket holder for the Dolphins and my wife is a Giants fan. Four years ago, we planned our wedding around our teams' schedules - it worked out perfect. They each had the same BYE week, so we scheduled our wedding for that weekend, with a honeymoon to St. Lucia for the following week. But it gets better because the next weekend, the 2 teams were playing each other. Miami Dolphins vs. New York Giants in New York, well technically, it's in New Jersey, but that's another story. So, after our week on the island of St. Lucia at the beautiful Sandals resort, we were off to New York. The Dolphins won that game 23-10.
Fast forward to this year, now the Dolphins are 0-6, and will face the 6-0 Patriots this weekend, so they could (probably will) be 0-7 when they head to London to face the 4-2 Giants. I just hope the Dolphins can at least make it an interesting game. The same way fútbol (READ: soccer) has struggled to capture the interest of US fans, the same holds true for the NFL in Europe and the rest of the world. Too many strict rules (they're used to VERY subjective yellow cards), too much game stoppage (normally the clock just runs for 45 mins. straight, plus any extra. Then a short break and do it again), wearing all this "gear" - pads, helmets, etc... who knows why each side can't accept the other's past-time. Probably just familiarity. And, yes, I said football is our past-time, with all of baseball's issues, it's been surpassed by the monsters of the gridiron.
So, London, here we come.
Go Dolphins! Let me extend my 4 years of bragging rights another round.
So, I spent the next 30 minutes surfing the broker sites - mostly out of disgust, cussing... Cussing them, cussing Jeb Bush for making scalping legal, wondering about the fuzzy logic that really thought this would be better. They were right in their assumption that this would create competition, but as to lowering prices... not even close!
Surprisingly, they didn't realize that with a finite supply of something, the laws of supply & demand don't apply. Why can a one-of-a-kind painting sold at auction in Christie's worth more than a mass-produced print sold at Wal-Mart? Besides the subjective qualities, it's supply. The masterpiece is worth more because there aren't anymore, while the print isn't unique and more can always be produced, so there's nothing to drive the price higher.
The same is true with concert tickets and the limited supply - most of the time. Sometimes an artist will throw a monkey wrench into the works by announcing additional shows (affecting the supply - which should lower the price) but that doesn't happen often - unless you're The Police or The Rolling Stones.
So, 30 mins. after the show is sold out, I'm watching demand slowly deplete the tickets that are showing on the broker's websites. My daughter's birthday approaching, knowing how much she wants to go to this concert, I jump. I find 2 tickets (Upper level, 4th row) for $150 each and I buy them. If I have to deal with snakes, I want to stick the ones with the least poison.
I chose StubHub (owned by eBay). They guarantee all of their tickets sales.
FanProtect for Buyers
* You will get your tickets in time for the event.
* Your tickets will be authentic and valid for entry.
* You will receive tickets comparable to or better than
the tickets you ordered, or your money back.
* You will be refunded if the event is canceled and
is not rescheduled.
So, at least I'm assured that I won't lose my money. But if I get to the show and the tickets do end up bogus, no amount of money will console my daughter if we have to stand outside that show, with all of her excited anticipation, unable to get it in. So far everything is looking aboveboard, I already received the tickets. They are the actual ticket machine printed ones, not the highly suspicious laser-printed PDF e-tickets.
While I don't condone their business, I can't fault their business practices. Trying to add customer service and piece of mind to a situation that often holds neither.
We'll see how it goes. I'll be filling you in on November 21st about my experience at the Hannah Montana show. Weeeeeee!
Tickets for the Hannah Montana concert went on sale the morning of Sept. 15. I set up 3 of my computers to be ready to at least secure 2 tickets to ensure that my 8 year old daughter (a huge Hannah fan) gets to go. Ticket prices ranged from $26 - $66.
The site dictates the following stipulations:
Ticket limit is 4 tickets per household.
Please Note: There is a strict ticket limit policy in effect, more than one order per person or household will result in cancellation without notification.
-- No problem... I only want 2.
REFRESH... REFRESH... REFRESH... it's up!
Full Price Tickets: 2 - Any Price
Section: Best Available
Location: Best Available
Click "Look For Tickets"
Input Verification Code
(BTW... "This step helps prevent unfair use of automated programs." - Good stick it to those scalpers and ticket brokers)
Then at 10:00:20 (Yes, that's 20 seconds past the start time of 10 am), I received the following message:
"There were no tickets available that matched your request"
What!!? How can that be?
Thousands of tickets gone in less than 20 seconds? And when purchasers were limited to a max of 4. Season ticket holders to the Florida Panthers were guaranteed tickets to any other show that comes to the Bank Atlantic Center - maybe they got all of the tickets? Doubt it - there aren't that many season ticket holders. Also, I have a friend who is a season ticket holder and he was told that because of this special show they couldn't honor that promise. Okay, so where did all of the tickets go?
The TicketMaster site displays the following helpful hint:
"Can't find tickets? You can still buy Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus tickets from other fans through TicketExchange!"
Sec. 403 (Upper deck), Row 8, Seat 19 - $275 (Yes, that's for only 1 seat!)
Sec. 5 (Middle floor), Row F, Seat 12 - $785 (Again, for only 1 seat)
Then I found hundreds, no, thousands of tickets posted on every ticket broker site - Ticketliquidator, FrontRowKing, GotTickets, StubHub (owned by eBay), TicketsNow... all of them. Tons of tickets! Lowest price: $150 per ticket for upper deck seats. Up to $12,000 for a private box that holds 20 (what a deal at $600 each person?).
This isn't an isolated case either. My friend went through the same for the show in Kansas City. And now Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon has gotten enough complaints from upset parents to start an investigation. CNN picked up the same story for the Nashville show. And it seems pretty much all of the shows have seen the same result.
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush signed the anti-scalping legislation [House Combined Bill No. 6003] into law June 7, 2006, making Florida one of 35 states to legalize scalping. "When you have a monopoly, what happens?" asked John K. Stargel, R-Lakeland, who sponsored the bill in the House. "You pay more. I think you've seen what the high end of the prices will be. And now there'll be more people, more tickets available and consumers will have more choices, which I think is a good thing."
Government needs to evaluate how their plan to remove anti-scalping laws would increase competition and reduce prices. News Flash: It's not working!!
Next... I'll tell you how I sold my soul for the happiness of my daughter.
I'm not sure about where my life has gone or where it shall go in the future, but I believe my soul was meant for other things. I think it's a matter of location, not misdirection or mistakes. I've found the perfect woman, I have a beautiful daughter, and we have a comfortable life... but I think there's more.
My wife and I work too hard (well, she does) and it's rewarding enough monetarily, but it's not fulfilling. It's work. I want a passion. Not just for me, but for all of us. I don't know what, but something... buy a chateau in France or Italy with a vineyard and toil over each vintage; write a great novel that seizes the imagination; retake my art and stop feeling like I'm wasting a gift; learn to play the piano; rebuild and customize a '70 1/2 Chevy Camaro Z28 and road trip across the country; and share whatever it is with friends and family.
Oof! 38 years old... ouch. When did that happen!?
Oh, well, time flies when you're having fun.
At least I don't feel as old as this age seemed when I was 20.
So, Johns Hopkins returned the bad news on the pathology of the now banished thyroid. Something called a papillary carcinoma, which is generally the culprit in about 80% of thyroid cancers diagnosed. Scary! You hear the stories and stigma around the word cancer so when it gets close to home, you try to steel yourself for what may come.
Next, was to determine treatment. Apparently radioactive iodine treatment is standard after a thyroidectomy, it's just a matter of needing only an outpatient dosage or a 3-day quarantine hospital stay. Gina's doctor decided she needed the 3-day timeout. So, here's the deal - she takes a little pill that arrives in a metal box, inside a metal box, it can't be directly touched and once taken no one can be within 10 feet of her. It has a 6-7 day half life, so after 2 days, you were allowed very limited time within a 3 foot proximity. In fact, she can't have anything in the room with her that she can't throw away afterwards - clothes, books, magazines, etc. That cuts out the all of the fun stuff... iPods, portable DVD player, laptop, cell phone, etc. It's like a 3 day incarceration! She gets a TV and phone in the room and that's about it. No Internet? Yikes! Just euthenize me why don't you. Weird that the nursing and dietary personnel had to wear little geiger counters to monitor their exposure when they had to enter. That's some serious stuff.
All in all (not that I was the one going through it) for "chemotherapy" this is a pretty mild form - no nausea, hair or weight loss; only a mild dry, sore throat for which they perscribe lemon hard candies. Papillary cancer cells that may have spread elsewhere in the body will absorb iodine, so if the iodine is radioactive, it will then kill those cancerous cells. Apparently the iodine will then show up in a full-body scan a week later if there are additional cancer cells somewhere... Gina's scan was NEGATIVE.... Yeah! Finally some good news.
So, let's hope this chapter of this blog and of this scariness is over! I've realized that I'd rather have it myself than watch Gina go through something like this again. I've also learned a new respect for what serious cancer sufferers (afflicted or related) go through - it goes against the "beats a stick in the eye" saying.
Arriving at 6:15 am for my wife to undergo a thyroidectomy, I would much rather be the chauffeur than the patient. Sure the chauffeur (especially a spouse/parent) has to endure a lot of waiting in usually uncomfortable chairs, watching a TV that you'd kill to control the remote (especially us husbands) and the lack of timely information - but I'd take that any day over anesthesia, being cut open, anesthesia nausea, noisy roommates, noisy hallways, hourly poking & proding, the food (blah!), leashed to an IV and most of all, the endless hours of boredom. It makes one consider the benefit of being DOA.
The elderly woman in the next bed asked them to change her bedding, then asked if they do that daily. The clinical assistant said that they "make" the beds daily (um... not when there's someone almost always in it?) but they don't "change" the sheets daily. Huh? Even the cheapest hotels change the bedding daily if there's an occupant - but in a hospital, it isn't necessary? If the hotel can afford it from just the room rate, a hospital has profit oozing from many sources and like they don't charge enough for the hospital room to at least give you clean linens?
The roommate is wearing noise-cancelling headphones connected to the TV mounted on a nifty floating arm - she said they're for "all the noise around here". She also has her cell phone on the loudest ringer setting (so she can hear over the noise-cancelling headphones no doubt) and takes a minimum of 3 rings to answer it. Funny thing is I only hear her speaking loud to all of her friends from Century Village (FL) and NY about the diverticulitis that has stranded her here for "a minimum of 12 days". Glad we're only here for 2 days!
Luckily Gina's surgery went perfectly, hopefully the side effects (mostly from anesthesia) will subside soon. Then she can get home and rest in a nice & quiet comfortable bed.
Okay, Jyte is cool... I don't know why, but it is. And it's addicting.
For those of you that don't know, Jyte is a website where you can make a claim or share cred and others can vote on your statement (thumbs up or thumbs down).
Some of the statements are really inane (i.e. Learning to speak Klingon is a complete waste of time, I sing in the shower, etc.) others are more interesting a debatable (i.e. The purpose of life is different for different people., I don't feel that I really have a purpose, etc.).
My one and only post (so far) was The Internet was always interesting, but only now is it becoming useful. - currently being downed 10 (up) - 12 (down). Sometimes the questions and votes are difficult to interpret, such as in this one... do people think the Internet has always been useful or do they not think it is yet. Or, are they confused that perhaps I was considering email as part of the Internet - which I wasn't.
Anyways, check it out. Just surf through the claims, it's easy, but if you want to vote or make your own claim, you'll have to register or sign in with an OpenID (if you have one).
Besides when I was a kid with a lawnmower, I've only been self-employed 1 other time. I started a graphic design company with a partner at first and then later bought him out when he needed to relocate. I had the company for about 3 years until desire gave way to need and I took a design position with a clothing catalog company.
Having my own company taught me many things - mostly from the "how to run a business" administrative side - payables, receivables, filing taxes, business licenses, how to incorporate, etc. During that time, I also learned the computer side of my design craft. I was an Illustrator with a self-proclaimed keen eye for design, but until then I hadn't really been computer trained. Krow, Inc. not only gave me my present day moniker and persona, but a solid foundation on which I've built over the years.
The catalog company taught me several invaluable lessons. The first was how to work as part of a team and how to work within a process. The job was very regimented in its processes and showed me the importance of paying attention to the details - every minute, fine detail. I am genetically anal-retentive and obsessive-compulsive anyway and this just further nurtured that nature. I also grew my knowledge of printing - sheetfed, large web presses, inks, papers, etc. but after 3 years, I was ready to move on.
I took a job with an advertising agency thinking that the diversity of many clients and different creative projects would restimulate my brain after the monotony of the catalog business. This turned out to be true. Expanding my creative portfolio to include more print advertising, brochures, billboards, identity packages, etc. But here is where I met 3 important people in my life.
The first and most important was my wife, Gina. She was the VP of Finance at the agency and likes to say that I fell in love with her because she was intrumental in getting a raise at one point - while that helped us first interact, it was only the catalyst to getting to know all of her qualities that really made me fall in love with her.
The next was someone I considered to be a creative mentor. He taught me how to not only be the one who executes (designer) but how to to be a Creative Director. He taught me how to formulate the ideas - how to think - and not just self indulgent creative but something truly beneficial for the client... good advertising.
The last is my current boss. I brought on his software company to the agency as a client and later he brought me on as his VP of Marketing and am now in charge of sales and marketing.
He's helped me broaden my business acumen. In addition to being very business saavy, he's knowledgeable in marketing and sales, while at the same having a solid background in the technical foundation of our company. I've learned quite a lot about business management
from him and continue to still.
I hope to someday soon venture again into entrepreneurship and leverage the knowledge I've been gleaning from everyone. I'll be happy if I can parlay it into similar success. I'll keep you posted.
I'm not sure... why are you reading this? If you don't know that, then I shouldn't have to know why I'm blogging. I read several blogs and many of them are brilliant musings by brilliant men, but what will mine be like? I guess we'll see...
I have about a 30 minute one-way drive to & from my office - this provides me with a lot of time to think, daydream, formulate, plot and plan. But that's thinking, no judgment, no editor, no critique, and let's face it... some things are better left unsaid, or for that matter, unwritten.
I'm sure the fodder for my posts will be factors of my life - children, family, pets, work, sports and personal finances. But I'm sure I'll delve into subjects that are more ancillary - politics, foreign affairs, tabloid journalism, music and entertainment.
The one thing I ask is that just as you shouldn't judge a book by the cover, don't judge this blog by this prelude post. Perhaps the chapters to come will hold more promise. Hopefully, there can be some outside contributions to spark discussion, debate or even future posts. More importantly will be my own commitment to feeding this blog on a regular basis - like I said, I guess we'll see (and read).
Roasted garlic broccoli, pancetta, butternut yucca hash over a base of fennel cream.
Tasty… no. 4 is not hot at all.
Sony Open Tennis (Day 8): Recap
Sharapova UUUNNHHH to Victory! (at Sony Open)
143 MPH serve by John Isner. BOOM! (at Sony Open)
Time to watch a little tennis - I think Isner & Sharapova (UUUNNHHH!) (at Sony Open)
Not as different tasting as the Chicken & Waffles chips, but good… and cheesy.
Dollah, dollah bills, y’all! (at No Name Pub)
Contemplating the name of the No Name Pub… or… they’re texting. (at No Name Pub)
Beautiful sunrise - wish I could enjoy it more. Time to get up and out of my head. #Keys (at Glunz Ocean Beach Club Hotel & Resort)
Sunset over the 7-mile bridge with @_emilywilliams_ & @lexi_mcgill (at Sunset Grille & Raw Bar)
The girls can’t hang out with dad, so they’re tanning over there. I get to chill solo. :(
The girls: @_emilywilliams_ & @lexi_mcgill in the Keys! Beautiful weather! (at Glunz Ocean Beach Club Hotel & Resort)
WIN! When you pass Motorcycle Guy pulled over by a cop after he went by in emergency lane cause he can’t wait in traffic #Keys
MM 87… the parking lot begins. 35 miles to go. sigh #Keys
An hour late leaving the house but finally on the road. #Keys
The Pope, wearing a fabulous vintage chiffon-lined Dior gold lame gown
over a silk Vera Wang empire waist tulle cocktail dress, accessorized with a three-foot House of Whoville hat and the ruby slippers Judy Garland wore in the Wizard of Oz, on his way to tell us it’s Wrong to be Gay.
Friday. yay. meh. sigh.