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Category: weather

12/11/09 08:47 - 16ºF - ID#50538

Snow Days

Read nothing but bitching in one form or another yesterday. "We had tougher storms and still went to work/school/whatever." Yes, we have and I think my point was be glad you didn't have to be out yesterday. As I write this now, it is 16 degrees outside and not much warmer in my office, but watching the wind & snow have at it yesterday, I was glad the kids got the day off and didn't have be chasing buses and their mom got the day too. The topper for me was getting the phone call a little before 7:00 a.m. that I got a day too. Somehow I stopped caring that I couldn't see across Delaware Ave.

Yeah, sure we've battled bigger storms, but I'm glad we didn't have to, by last night it was just cold. I had to pick up a daughter from a friends house, disturbing my car from the nice warm garage. Got a slight thrill driving my unspoiled car past snow mounds that had cars at their bottoms. It was real easy to find mine in the Wegmans parking lot when I made a quick stop on the way home.

I'll leave you with this one thought: the person who invented the "necksock" for Columbia outerwear is a frickin genius and deserves a better cut of whatever royalties they are currently receiving.

Stay warm, peeps
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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50538/Snow_Days.html
Words: 231
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: me

12/03/09 10:17 - 48ºF - ID#50446

Published!

well, not really, but a Facebook note that I wrote about Memorial Auditorium's deconstruction which lead to a rambling blog was chopped up and incorporated into Aud-ieu:Buffalo Says Goodbye to the Aud. Through historical photos and current ones of the tear-down, my piece is culled from in four different sections. The book comes out next week, but you can see it online at:



It's the book in digital, page turning form.

Nice ego boost headed into the weekend.
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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50446/Published_.html
Words: 85
Location: Buffalo, NY


12/02/09 03:14 - 47ºF - ID#50438

Oh, NYS

Wonder if the marriages of Volker, Masierz and Stachowsk can be invalidated.

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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50438/Oh_NYS.html
Words: 14
Location: Buffalo, NY


12/02/09 02:01 - 47ºF - ID#50437

The Speech, the War and Everything

I didn't see the entirety of the President's address last night. You knew something had to be coming along the lines of what was announced.

I read the text of it this morning to avoid the contaminants of both Fox and MSNBC and if President Bush had been that declarative in 2003, I don't think we would have had the polarization that we have seen in the intervening years. I'm not sure how I feel about it entirely. I think had it predated the Iraq enterprise, the climate might be a lot different now. Coming out of 9/11, the protests for coming into Afghanistan and taking care of what was thought to be needed probably would have had minimal dissent.

It's interesting because some extremists on both sides are grumbling about costs. Now, we worry about the finances? Some people will do anything for a soundbite. As nothing appeared to be changing with the status quo, it seemed like the President had two choices, pull out completely or wrachet things up to get this done. To pull out would not be easy and would mean we were just pissing away resources. I'm not in love with the alternative, but he inherited two fights that weren't staged very well to start with, and at least there is a goal, a plan that doesn't involve banner hangings and photo ops, but a definitive goal. There is no good in any of this, but that seems as pragmatic an outline as you are likely to see.

Being a pacifist/coward, I'm not the possessor of the most grand of military minds, but after watching Desert Storm nightly on television, I've often wondered if we are using all we have in such items. It used to be derigeur to show footage of a bomber pinpoint targeting the desired target. I don't know if the guys on the ground are getting that same sort of support, something that occured to me for reasons passing understanding. Neither Iraq, part ll or Afghanistan has seen that.

The things we choose to care about....
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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50437/The_Speech_the_War_and_Everything.html
Words: 344
Location: Buffalo, NY


11/26/09 09:23 - 41ºF - ID#50388

One of those holiday types

You know those people aren't real keen on the holiday season. I think I'm becoming one of them. In between wandering out to watch the runners, I had my thanksgiving morning in front of The Godfather. The ex hinted at "we have to talk" about going to the various grandparents house at christmas time. It used to be struggles about economics and it seems like the drama intensifies and I'm already tired of it.

I am so off the charts full of black friday stories disguising themselves as news. The only thing more annoying are the people who think that is fun or part of the tradition. I sit here positive that by the late news some poor bastard in East Buttcrack, Alabama will have bought it when he got trampled in the flat screen line at Walmart.

I found a little holiday bliss during the Springsteen concert Sunday night when a couple xmas songs got played, but just all the crap you have to go through with the holidays currently, it was a small window. I already cyber shopped for the girls and will do likely for number one son this week.

I'm not sure when one holiday got to bully all the others and become a season. I don't particularly have a bone to pick with Christmas itself. I like the Christmas morning brunch the kids, their mom and I have. That is nice, the rest is kind of disposable. I didn't go to my in-laws on christmas day for a couple years and was going to not go again until people said "You're not Coming?", but I think I may revert a little so the ex and her partner don't feel awkward. It was good to hear that my folks are finally over stuff and invited her for Christmas Eve, so I guess progress is being made.

The inherent awkwardness and stress have aged me. I used to measure the season by how many showings of A Christmas Story I was up and building stuff, but even then it was work. I always want the option to bring the world to the kids, never works out that way. I know a lot of things, just none of them overly lucrative.

After the separation/divorce, you deal with that and "What's everybody comfortable dance?" that is done with amiably separated folks.

Holidays are a lot of mental work and I don't have much use for any doorbusters.
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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50388/One_of_those_holiday_types.html
Words: 409
Location: Buffalo, NY


11/24/09 04:52 - 49ºF - ID#50372

Bohemian Rhapsody

This makes me chuckle


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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50372/Bohemian_Rhapsody.html
Words: 7
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: wine

11/21/09 12:29 - 46ºF - ID#50356

A true tasting

This is an onsen (hot spring) in Kanagawa Prefecture. This is a wine hot spring. This year, they used Beaujolais Nouveau wine. This picture was taken on the grand opening of this particular bath and it was the day of the newest release of the wine itself. Apparently this onsen also has green tea baths, sake baths and coffee baths! I think this may also qualify for the "only in Japan" title!

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There are too many jokes been written in my head to transcribe here

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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50356/A_true_tasting.html
Words: 90
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: fun

11/18/09 10:23 - 48ºF - ID#50336

Dorky good times

The Strong Museum in Rochester has some seriously cool exhibits. The bulk of the stuff there is geared toward little kids, which thankfully is slowing down for my guys. Occasionally, something catches notice. They recently launched a new exhibit called Videotopia, which tickled my inner geek. Videotopia is a room set aside and loaded with 120 fully functioning full size video arcade games from the late 70s and early 80s. Forget your Halos, as Marble Madness, Tempest, Mr and Mrs Pac Man, the entire Donkey Kong clan and many others were represented in their early form. If they had drink service, I could have stayed all day.

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A couple three hours of that helped me and number one son recover our mojo after attending the fashion show at Babeville on Friday night. The image of me at that makes me laugh too. After getting through lunch at the neighboring Bill Gray's, we took a stroll through the Toy Hall of Fame which was a lot of fun too. A little weird seeing stuff I tripped over as a young parent or had as a kid under glass, but it was a trip to mess the working Atari systems they had set up.

A cherry on the cake of the trip was the exhibit devoted to comic book heroes. I still haven't looked at my own photos, but they devoted a hall to statues, games, interactives for all the mainstream superheroes. The line to get your picture taken scaling a building wall a la Adam West in Batman was a little long so we skipped that, opting for stuff like the walk across the city street model where all sorts of Heroes and Villians mayhem was transpiring.

Nice to have an 11 year old as cover for my inner 11 year old.


great day for a little adventure.

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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50336/Dorky_good_times.html
Words: 322
Location: Buffalo, NY


11/14/09 10:29 - 48ºF - ID#50304

Extreme leftovers

Cheers to the popular ABC show for coming the oft forgotten about west side of Buffalo. The turn out is tremendous and I'm sure the "Move that bus!" moment will be well documented. The sheer volume of people giving of themselves is even more moving when you consider the area where it is happening. The Mass Ave. part of the west side of Buffalo hasn't been on many radars for a long time. The fact that as many as 50 properties are going to benefit from the week's worth of attention is a great thing.

The area got a lot of gibes from people who have never ventured west of Elmwood and never will. It struck that that attitude is part of what has kept those areas down. Block Grants and Hud monies buy new SUVs and blackberries, but there has never enough to make something like this happen. I don't watch the show, but when a TV show can galvanize thousands of folks, shouldn't there be somebody who can ride that wave of goodwill into other parts of the city. Michael Kearns is quoted in Buffalo Rising as saying this is a great thing and we should be able to do it again in a few months in another area of need. That is a laudable attitude, if it every happens. The cynic in me doubts it.

There has been some snide remarks from people who populate the news forums and listen to too much talk radio about check back in a month, yada, yada, yada. I want to try and rise above that a little bit. To generalize that as a veiled racism might be a bit harsh, but we are a parochial area. We don't like what we don't understand. That's okay, I'd rather my produce from Guercio's while you are paying too much at the chain store because it is on a "safe" street. People are isolationist in their own nooks and things suffer. That I think extends to the government. You'd hope your representative see the entire area to which they are elected. There was a running joke in the neighborhood when I lived on West and West Ferry in the early 90s. Whenever it snowed, the streets were plowed quickly. The joke was that was because Mayor Masiello's mom lived up the block. Jimmy Griffin moved good mountains getting the Bisons park built, by shoving those mountains to the east side where nobody would see them. Areas get written of because of that. The wags of talk radio, facebook, the news forums are talking about how the improvements won't last. I suppose there is that chance, but I also know there are a lot of folk in those streets and they are doing the best they can. There are gangs, but there are also people whose biggest crime is scraping by. Because they don't have a riding mower or a roof man doesn't make them less of a person. The short attention span of city hall isn't their fault.

So, I guess my point is with spending in the right direction could make a reality show to be proud of and in lieu of fresh blackberries, a little investment can go a long way and our leaders can lead the city, not just the portions they frequent. People get reelected for less. Kearns wants to do something to spur another mayoral run. Take some of the resources and do an east side version of this in the Spring. We all know Ty Pennington is sitting in his trailer reading the Wall St Journal while all this has been happening this week. It can happen again. We don't need the camera or the big reveal moment. We just have to want it to happen.
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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50304/Extreme_leftovers.html
Words: 628
Location: Buffalo, NY


Category: rant

11/12/09 07:59 - 31ºF - ID#50282

Seriously, Antoine, seriously?

After the state senate did nothing for two days other than pick up taxpayer supplied pier diems, One senator actually posted on facebook how much he was appreciating that nights dinner at Tavern on the Green? Did it not dawn on this tool that when you continue to treat your constituents like human ATMs that that probably wasn't the best thing to put in a public forum? Meanwhile the other one is grumping about being in Albany for two whole days. Poor baby. These two get stipends for sitting on two committees for their work. I sit on two committees for work and all I get is a longer work day.

Speaking of which, my office is having an animal art show tonight in Rory and Timika's wedding hall. Something tells me the art show won't be as much fun.

Ah, well, the journey of a 13 hour work day begins with that first sip of coffee. Have a great thursday, everybody

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Permalink: http://estrip.org/articles/read/mrmike/50282/Seriously_Antoine_seriously_.html
Words: 161
Location: Buffalo, NY


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sina said to sina
thanx...

sina said to paul
this place really is beautiful
I love to be there.
Incidentally, the photos are so beautiful...

sina said to paul
wow haaapppyyy birthday dear terry
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sina said to mike
happy birthday to you dear mike
wish the best
<3...