Free Leaf

"Don't gain the world and lose your soul, wisdom is better than silver or gold..."

Name:
Location: Falls Church, Virginia, United States

I have a lot more questions than answers, but I just keep asking. I constantly want to leave, but somehow manage to stay. I am both perfectly happy and completely miserable because of it. I think I am misunderstood but that could just be a huge misunderstanding, either way I guess the best way to put it is, "I ain't often right, but I've never been wrong."

9.29.2006

More TV Shows

I caught up on three more season premiers this week. Smallville last night on the CW, One Tree Hill also on the CW and I watched Veronica Mars a week early thanks to msn.com. It was good to catch the first episode of VM a week early because I am greedy and can use more Kristen Bell in my life. For a season premier I found it slow, but it did end on a high note and presented some great moments. Since it hasn’t aired yet and I don’t want to give too much away I will just say I liked it and of course will keep watching. I will even watch this episode again when it is on in HD. Later on Wednesday I caught another episode of Bones before flipping the channel and finding out what happened in the Limo crash on One Tree Hill. This is easily the most ridiculous show on television, if Degrassi goes there, then OTH goes therer or even therest. Let’s go over this real quick, the characters are 17 and in High School, and the storylines include a marriage, a school shooting, a pregnancy, a girl who lost both her birth mother and adopted mother to cancer, murder, suicide, and they even manage a ghost. I should be hit in the face for liking this show and yet they redeem all these ridiculous storylines with some great literary quotes and by trying to make it seem like the audience actually knew people like this in high school. Not exactly, but I will keep watching anyway, it’s a freaking train wreck and I can’t help myself. Then last night before the second episode of Grey’s I watched the biggest premier of the TV season Smallville. As always they did a fantastic job, Smallville’s cliffhangers are some of the best in the business and they wrapped up this one in a great fashion. Clark is trapped in the Phantom Zone, Zod is free on Earth and the world is being destroyed. It takes about 45 minutes before Clark gets back to Earth after being saved by one of his fathers former assistants, and once he does he is able to outsmart the General and save the world. After taking up most of the episode wrapping up where they left us at the end of last season they successfully prepare us for another great season of more growth for Clark Kent. The old spot that was once reserved for the Lana/Clark conversation at the end of the show gave us a very moving conversation about Heroes and destiny between Clark and Martha. The show also gave us glimpses of a relationship between Chloe and Jimmy Olsen as well as an awkward foreshadowing moment between Lois and Clark (doesn’t that sound great?) and showed some other possible story lines. The only disappointment would be the previews for next week. I can not stand how Smallville will follow up a great episode with one of seemingly nothing more than filler.

Only two shows left to premier on my list. But so far most are holding strong and my DVR is filling up. 6 Degrees got the axe last night as I took Lunesta instead of watching that garbage. Here is to a great rest of the season. I may even give Lost another shot but that’s a long shot.

Have a great weekend. Shabbat Shalom. Happy New Fiscal Year. Go Gators!!!! Roll Tide !!!

9.28.2006

Another reason I love Israel

Reading an article in the JPost about a shooting at Dawson University in Montreal I read this:

Later in the week, I was buying groceries on French Hill. The front pages of the Israeli newspapers showed Montreal students with their hands up in the air running through the same streets I've run through so many times, only for different reasons.

"It's terrible," a woman in line said next to me.

"That's my school," I responded in Hebrew. "I just finished last year. My friends are still there."

Without warning the elderly Israeli woman hugged me. She gave me her number and invited me for Shabbat dinner with her family.

Things like this may happen in other countries but I never read about them.

9.26.2006

The TV season so far

We are about halfway through the fall premiers and here is my take on the shows I have watched so far.

Family Guy – As ridiculous and as good as ever. Between this, Sunday night football and Adult Swim my night is set.

Heroes – I watched this last night and I am not entirely sold, it felt a lot like ABCs 6 degrees with super powers. I am gonna hold on this one and watch it again next week before I decide if I will care to keep watching.

Studio 60 – Loved the first episode, was lukewarm about the second. I will watch again but if I don’t really enjoy the third episode I will say goodbye to it.

House – Huge fan of this show and although the stories so far have not been anything new really I still love the show and watch every week. The high school stalker story is interesting and Cameron is hot.

Standoff – watched the first one because it was on after House but turned the second one off so I think I have passed on that show. It’s too bad because I really like the Office Space guy.

Bones – Another show I picked up last season that so far has been pretty good but not spectacular. If I somehow had a conflict with another show I might give it up but since I don’t see any right now I will keep watching.

Justice – Watched one episode for Nikki Reed and will not watch again. This show sucked sucked sucked sucked.

Grey’s Anatomy – I have watched since the beginning and don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. The first episode was a great way to start the season, I was glad they picked up right where they left off and I can not wait to see what happens next. Have I mentioned how cool Alex is to anyone yet? Thought so.

6 Degrees – I give this show an eh. There was a lot going on so caring about all the characters was hard and for some reason the Erika Christensen/Julia Stiles girl freaks me out. Anyway I might watch it again since its on right after Grey’s but its more likely that I change the channel and put on cartoons.

Numb3rs – I like the show, I really do but the season premier was boring and since it’s on Friday nights it is an automatic DVR which means I have to find time to watch it and that might not make its spot in my rotation safe. We will see though, the first episode was a “to be continued…”

Still looking forward to the premiers of:

One Tree Hill – sue me, I like it. It’s my moms fault.

Smallville – 6 years running the best show on TV.

Veronica Mars – hopefully this show will benefit being on after Gilmore Girls because it is a great show that no one seems to be watching.

Las Vegas – One of the most ridiculous shows on television but it is so entertaining.

The OC – Its Mintcents fault for making me watch the DVDs and although last season sucked I am nervously waiting to see what they are going to do. Marissa being gone is great but the addition of Caitlin might be a bit much for me. This show could get the axe early if it isn’t impressive since Thursday is already packed.

All these long posts

Here is a short one. Don’t worry I am pretty sure a long one will follow this as I have something tossing around my mind right now. But in the meantime here are a few things I feel like saying.

- For a guy with a blog I can be an extremely private person. I know that doesn’t seem to make much sense but I really am and I don’t like my private life being spoken about amongst my friends. Maybe its not privacy as much as the desire to control the conversation and when people are discussing my life without me I feel like I have no control.

- I have had it with tuna fish so I am taking a break from it. My diet is pretty boring to say the least, almost the same everyday because it’s the only way I know how to stay healthy and enjoy the food. So, I eat a lot of tuna but no more, I have switched from chunk light (too watery) to chunk white (too dry) and to be honest once you start choking it down you need to take a break. I guess I need to find something else to bring to work for one of my 3 meals. Turkey however is still holding strong in the rotation going on 20+ years.

- The Twins clinched the playoffs last night. I am so very excited for this, I love baseball, I love the Twins and if it weren’t for them making the playoffs I would hardly get to enjoy them. It does also mean that once September ends I wont be able to have a restful October like I was hoping for.

9.25.2006

Virgin festival

Finding words to describe this show seems silly and forced. The fact is the entire day, the whole experience was far beyond words but I am going to try anyway. Virgin festival was an overwhelming experience for any music lover and I somehow managed to maximize 10 + hours of music with good friends who just added to the experience. I could have watched this show on my own and had a great time so having two great people come visit for the show was icing on a very sweet cake.

The celebration and anticipation of Virgin festival actually began Thursday night when JB got into town. She flew down from Boston on what might be the coolest last minute plans I have ever been a part of after she decided on Tuesday that coming in on Thursday night was a good idea. We had dinner with friends that night and then I got to work from home Friday, which must have been boring for her but at least I could work from the couch and have some good company while I did it. On Friday my buddy who was driving to the show came by to pick up beer and coolers for the next day and we got to discuss our concert lineups. It was just another example of how pumped we all were for the next day. Later that night JB and I decided even though we had an early morning we should take advantage of DC and headed out to Georgetown, where we would meet up with my other friend Greav who was also coming into town just for the show. Ultimately, Friday was an early night but sleeping was so hard to do with such a huge day in front of us.

Then the concert day finally came. I began waking everyone up a little bit after 7 am, I had coffee while they got ready and we were out the door by 8:15 am. From my place we drove to the Greenbelt metro station where we were meeting a van and about 6 other people. As we waited for some of the stragglers to get there it seemed like a good idea to have a few beers right there in the metro parking lot. And if there is a telltale sign of a good day, beers in the metro parking lot at 9 am is it. We had two beers before we got to our VIP parking and then we opened up for real. From the time we got there at 10 am, until we went in to the show we were chugging beers and eating party mix, discussing music and anything else that came to mind. Shotgunning the four or so cans of beer that we had was probably a bad idea as I was wasted when we walked through the gates but I was seriously ready to go.

When we walked in the two stages and the dance tent were all ready up and running. We heard Kasabian blasting from the main stage, walked by the Drive-by Truckers who were already jamming out and made our way to RJD2 in the dance tent. Walking into the tent Pimlico still smelled like race horse but as the show went on and RJ picked up the pace and increased the volume this little tent got hot and mixed with smoke and beer and sweat it began to feel and smell like a concert. RJ was amazing once he got going, he definitely gained a few fans that day and it was the perfect way to get pumped up for the rest of the show. From there we walked out of the tent over to the second stage to catch the New Pornographers who I honestly barely remember but I enjoyed. We bought $8 beers, at least they were 24 ounces, and headed over to the main stage to catch the Raconteurs. Jack White’s side band was pretty impressive, I only knew one or two of their songs but they put on a good show. Sometime after that we sat down, ate and drank and relaxed a little bit as we heard music blaring from both stages in the distance. We missed Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and only heard some of Gnarles Barkley. We caught a couple Killers songs and checked out the Brazilian Girls, who had an awesome sound and the sexiest lead singer to ever wear a white facemask. I have no idea what she looked like at all but it was so odd and intriguing that I couldn’t stop watching, plus her accented voice made the music sound pretty incredible. After the Brazilian Girls we had more beers and more food and took in The Thievery Corporation. Thievery was amazing, they were the most diverse group of the day and I can not even begin to describe what their style of music actually is. They must have had 7 different singers leading on songs and a belly dancer. Not to mention that there two closing numbers were the most energetic and amped the crowd had been to that point during the day. From there we decided it was time to catch the main acts. I was sorry to miss the Flaming Lips and not catch John Digweed but when was I going to get another chance to see the Who?

With the sun going down and the day starting to wear on us we used the Who show to gain a second wind and relaxe while watching one of the greatest bands ever. We didn’t fight the crowd, instead we just got close enough to hear the music in a comfortable area where we could sit or stand and enjoy the crowd around us. The Who had some loyal fans there and when I watched some of these guys in their 50s stumbling around and dancing like fools I got this odd feeling that someday that could be me. There were entire families watching this show together and I found that to be so cool. The Who rocked, they were fantastic, I wasn’t really sure what to expect, I have seen the Stones, Aerosmith, Dylan and many others but you never know what you are gonna get out of these aging rockers. Well, they still clearly kick ass and it seemed like they truly enjoyed being on that stage, it was special and I was happy to be part of it. And then the Red Hot Chili Peppers tore the place down.

For RHCP we got as close as we could, even at night in that thick crowd of people it was extremely hot. We waited until about 9 pm for their set to begin and from the beginning there was so much energy and enthusiasm you could not help but move. Everything about it was amazing, the crowd, the energy, and the musicians. At times the words seemed unnecessary; at others they seemed to flow perfectly into the sounds from the bass guitar. Every song sounded as good or better than I ever remembered and getting to enjoy them while others crowd surfed or moshed in front of me was truly an experience I will never forget. Singing along with thousands of people to their hits was one of those unique moments that you can hardly find anywhere else. When they closed their set with an encore that began with a cover of Tiny Dancer I was completely exhausted and moving on the sheer adrenaline the show provided me alone. I don’t think there is much more I can say, there was not a single part of the day that I did not enjoy, it was simply the perfect blending of music, friends and alcohol that you can only find at a show like this. So I guess the only thing left is who wants to go to Bonnaroo next summer?

9.22.2006

Next year in Jerusalem

It’s that time of year again. The high holidays, when most reform Jews go to synagogue for the first and last time of the year. Not me, I don’t go on the high holidays, too big of a circus, I do go other times throughout the year instead so I am not so bad. But as we approach another Rosh Hashanah, my third in Washington DC, I feel the need like so many other bloggers, to reflect on this last year and look forward to my next one.

I have had some ups and downs since this time last year, I have changed a lot and not at all. I have met new friends and become better friends with old ones. I have lost some friends too, but that is part of growing up. My requirements for the people I bring into my life have changed dramatically, I am looking deeper into the soul of the people I meet, not just the stuff they show the world but getting to the heart of the person. This includes a reevaluation of many of my friendships and how close or how far away I should keep them.

In this past year I have lost my grandma but gained a baby cousin and began to rekindle a relationship with my middle sister. Throughout this year I watched my baby sister graduate from college and have since been trying to help her figure out her life. I helped my mom cope with the loss of her mother three years after she lost her father. Again at the funeral I did not cry but I do miss them both dearly and I hope that my life this year and in all the ones that follow will honor them as they deserve. I have become closer with my cousins and have made it a point to keep in contact more. Spending time with my extended family this year has shown that although we have our problems loving and caring about each other is not one of them.

My job still sucks and has pretty much all year but the experience may very well lead me to something bigger. That is all anyone can hope anyway, I hope that this year has taught me things about where I want to go in life and where I want to be. DC has treated me well, but ultimately it does not feel like home. This year my group of friends in DC gained Mike and Courtney and EK and DC has been that much better because of them and a little bit harder to leave. This year I found new roommates with an open ended lease; they are nice people but will be much easier to leave than my last roommates. This year I have often thought about Israel and questioned why I am not there and I hope to answer those questions in the year ahead. I have closed the year that was on a whirlwind of excitement filled with trips and sporting events, concerts, dinners and new friends. It has been a good year, one I can look back on favorably now that all is said and done. But I look forward to next year where hopefully I will be able to say this year in Jerusalem for the first time.

9.21.2006

Tennessee Weekend part 3: The Game

This weekend was too much fun and too much info to throw into one post so this will be a three part series discussing taking a roadie by yourself, RV life and of course the amazing football game.

Neyland stadium is huge. That is the first impression you get from outside the stadium, the second is usually wow that orange is hideous. I have heard many people complain about how difficult it was to find the seats and sections but we had no problems at all. Our seats were in section A about 20 rows up, with a pretty good view although we were very close to one endzone and had trouble seeing plays at the other end of the field. This being a college game we turned our 4 seats into 8 by sneaking in two friends and two random girls my cousin met outside. The girls hilariously bribed a cop to let them into the stadium; they had no tickets at all. Somehow I doubt I would have that kind of luck with the Knoxville PD. Anyway, the game kicks off and everything goes great, first play we pick off the pass, our section goes nuts. But the old guys in front of us were not feeling it at all. I kind of felt bad for them, having us standing on their seats and bumping into them but I paid $100 for that ticket and I was going to enjoy every second of it. The game itself was extremely intense, at times frustrating and also so great to be a part of. I find it silly that people’s moods are so affected by the play of 18-22 year old boys in a game that most of us played ourselves but I can’t help but be one of those people. When we lose I am upset and when we win I am overjoyed, I don’t apologize for it but I realize I take it a little too seriously at times, which makes me fear for those much worse than I. Fan is short for fanatic after all. But on that night none of it really mattered, we were on the joyful end of fandom after a 1 point victory over one of our bitter rivals in their stadium. Most of my friends took over the strip but I just went back to my RV, had some beers and reveled in the moment with the other people in our lot.


9.19.2006

Tennessee weekend part 2: RV life in Knoxville, TN

This weekend was too much fun and too much info to throw into one post so this will be a three part series discussing taking a roadie by yourself, RV life and of course the amazing football game.

In my eagerness to get to Knoxville on Friday morning I did a horrible job of coordinating my arrival time with the arrival of my accommodations. My cousin and his RV did not leave Atlanta until around noon when they would have about a 4 hour trip, the trip ended up taking them 5 hours do to a few snags with the big girl but they eventually did make it. I on the other hand arrived in Knoxville at 3 pm with nothing to do. Arriving two hours early did provide me with some much needed time to stretch and find my away around the campus and check out the scene a little bit. I began by driving around looking for the parking lot that our RV would be calling home for the weekend. Unfortunately, I am really good at finding things and this only took about ten minutes. So, with about two hours still left to kill I drove back over to Cumberland St. where all the bars are supposed to be and decided to walk around, maybe have a beer or something. After finding parking by the hospital a couple blocks up I get out the car and start walking around, but I find nothing but empty or closed bars. It was disappointing, on a Friday afternoon in Gainesville you can walk up and down University Ave and find good crowds of people sitting on lawns, drinking beer and listening to live music, I found none of this. It was certainly disappointing but I was tired anyway and decided to just go wait in the car and call my sister until my cousin called me. He finally did that around 5 and I headed over to the RV lot, where I actually had to give them directions since they had no idea where they were going.

No longer alone it was time to get the weekend started, we got the RV parked, opened up the slides and I had my first Jack and Coke. At this point it was about 5 pm, the sun was still high enough to get some things done and we spent the next couple of hours getting to know our neighbors and setting up the Directv. All the while we were drinking of course. We were in an RV lot full of pros, people who go to every away game and all but one of them were extraordinarily helpful. They helped us with our water pump, with our satellite dish, with selecting a parking spot and gave us tips on saving water and not running the generator at night. The whole thing made me feel like I was at the redneck version of a Phish concert, we were all there for the same reason and our one unique commonality was all that we needed to be in this whole thing together. Once the RV was settled in, the tv was on and we had a sufficient buzz we all began to get ready for a night out in Knoxville. I probably should have showered but it was a hassle so I threw on some deodorant and cologne and we headed over to Calhoun’s for some BBQ. This place was crazy packed and had a 2 hour wait, so what do we do? We pay the waiter 40 bucks and sit right down. It was perfect. The food was amazing and the beers were good, plus we got a great view of one spectacular mullet. After dinner we were greeted to a swarm of Florida fans singing songs and taunting every Tennessee fan brave enough to come out on Friday before we grabbed a cab and headed back to Cumberland St. This time there were plenty of people out but my cousin and the guys he came with were not feeling it so they left me to some other friends on the strip. They headed back to the RV to drink and smoke and hang out with the other RV folks. I stayed out, went in to no less than 4 bars, bumped into people whose names I can’t remember and talked a good amount of shit with a friendly Volunteer fan. My first night in Knoxville ended with a falafel and a long walk home.

My second day started early as I am a notoriously early riser, even after a late night. What can I say? I was excited as heck to start the day. First stop breakfast buffet and coffee (a must for me). Following that we made a food run, which was one of the best shopping sessions I have ever been a part of. Approximately $200 later we were armed with an Aussie walkabout grill and enough food to feed ourselves lunch and dinner. And feed ourselves we did, burgers and dogs and brats and beers and whiskey, tequila shots and Gatorade (gotta hydrate). We spent the entire day in the lot, cooking and watching games on tv, drinking and talking, the weather was fantastic and the environment was perfect, it was what game day was meant to be. After the great group of 3:30 games came to an end and the bottle of Jack was no more we headed out for the shuttles and for Neyland stadium. Gator shirts on, beers in our pockets we were ready for 106,000 rowdy Tennessee fans and ready for a great game.


9.18.2006

Tennessee weekend part 1: The Drive

This weekend was too much fun and too much info to throw into one post so this will be a three part series discussing taking a roadie by yourself, RV life and of course the amazing football game.

I have often said that driving is one of the pleasures that I value most about American life. The freedom of being able to explore this huge country of ours is often overlooked but to me it is easily one of the greatest things about this country. My drive to Tennessee was not as eventful as some of my others since Virginia took up 95% of the drive but it was still enjoyable and not terribly long.

On Friday I left incredibly early after dropping off a friend at the airport. The actual plan was to drop off and go back home to sleep for a few more hours but at 5:30 am with my car already packed I was too excited to go back home, so I just kept going instead of backtracking. The most difficult part was that the caffeine addict that I am did not have time to make his standard three cups before leaving so I was driving impaired essentially. After about an hour or so on the road I found the haven of all road trips, Cracker Barrel. As a pro road tripper I made sure to stop and enjoy a breakfast by myself as one of the first and only people in the joint. I had the sunrise sampler and plenty of coffee, took my vitamins and got back on the road. A few hours later I stopped for coffee and took a nap. Yes I napped in the car at a gas station, I was tired, it was only about 8 am and I had been awake for 3.5 hours. But the 20 minute snooze really helped, as did the dunkin coffee that I picked up. When I drive I have a little rule that every stop must accomplish at least two things. You can not just stop to go the bathroom, you have to go to the bathroom and get coffee or food or gas, something, but if you have to go to the bathroom and don’t need anything else you have to keep going. Later on in this trip I made a 3 part stop, cash, restroom and food, that made me happy. But for the most part the drive was uneventful, it was peaceful, I listened to a lot of music, hit little traffic and got to enjoy some great time alone.

And for me there isn’t a better way to travel, I do love interacting with people but I also have a huge loner streak inside me. I like hitting the road by myself, singing along to songs on old CDs and being free of outside influence. It gives me much needed time to think and reflect. Oddly it’s alone on long drives in my car where I mourn the loss of my grandparents, where I remember them fondly and I take time to think about so many other people who have come in and out of my life and how they have left their mark on me. Most people would dread the 10 hours in the car that it took me to get to Knoxville and they would hate the 8 hours it took me to get home but I loved it. Just as the ride down was filled with excitement of the coming weekend, the ride home was a breeze after what was a perfect weekend.

9.14.2006

Good Ole Rocky Top...

Fuck you Tennessee.

Rocky top, you’ll always be
Second in the SEC.
Good ole rocky top,
Fuck you Tennessee, Fuck you Tennessee.

I am gonna be out of town again this weekend. September is killing my soul, hurting my wallet and leaving me with fleeting memories and too many pictures. So, where am I going this time? I am heading back into the heart of SEC country to see the Mighty Gators take on the pathetic little Vols in Neyland Stadium. The place seats 105,000 with their creamsicle orange and white checkerboard endzone design. I am very pleased to announce that I have my tickets and will be sitting near that endzone, where I expect to see many Gator touchdowns. In truth I am not really sure what to expect from my team just yet. I have watched the first two games and came away impressed but apprehensive about the performance. I also caught some of the Vols games and I am not sure what to think about them either. In their first game they looked like world beaters, in their second they looked like crap. And then there is of course my dreaded experience at Alabama last year. The fans were great but the game was horrible, if the game turns out bad for the good guys this year I am not sure the Vol fans will be able to redeem their town the way the Bammers did. Plus, I hear Knoxville is just a big pit, a dump, why would anyone want to go there unless their team was playing?

But that is it really, we follow our teams and we live and die with every game. It’s the SEC, its Fall and its football season. I think only someone from down there understands, (Courttew, EK, Lithium, Mikey Marriage, Nicole, you know what I am talking about) the rest don’t get it. They schedule weddings on important games and expect you to work on a Saturday in September; they have no idea about the pageantry and excitement. They have no idea that the fans have game day rituals or uniforms that they wear every week (I wear the same shirt every week until we lose). They didn’t survive the Beam team or learn how to sneak a flask into the stadium in college. They never had to pass back student IDs or double up tickets to get their friends into their block. They don’t know what its like at an SEC tailgate where the grill gets rolled in on a trailer and the whole day is planned out with breakfast, bloody mary’s and a lunch buffet that only a southerner could be proud of. They don’t eat pub subs or make fun of Phat Phil and they just don’t get that there simply isn’t a better place in the world than an SEC stadium on a Saturday in the Fall (although UK and VU are questionable).

I am nervous and excited and I cant wait until 8 pm Saturday night when the Gators and the Vols kickoff and start the SEC season right. My early prediction is that Percy Harvin lives up to the hype and Jarvis Moss has a breakout game. Gators win, Leaf gets drunk.

GO GATORS!!!!!!!!!!

9.13.2006

Sweater weather

Along with all the other things I love about September, the month that might kill me, the football, the television and the ability to sleep with the windows open I also like the clothes. Today there was a high of 70 degrees which for me is low enough to wear a sweater to work. I only like this weather right up until you have to start putting jackets on top of the sweaters, when that happens I cry myself to sleep at night longing for Spring but until then I love it. And it may just be that I am a crazy kid from Florida making up for lost time or that I am a Midwestern boy at heart but I think the girls look better too.

Yes, I said it, I prefer my girls in sweaters to the lovely skimpy summer fare. I don’t remember when it started or how but I have always found a girl who can put herself together in a sweater to be amazing. I did also go through a phase where I thought girls in overalls were the hottest thing ever, so take this with a grain of salt. But, still if you are a female who can make yourself look hot in more clothes than less you really have something going. Throw on some glasses with short hair and you might be golden, with me at least.

9.12.2006

Skol Vikings – Monday Night Football

My favorite month of the year is turning into a devastating spiral of over indulgence that might end up shaving years off my life. The nonstop insanity continues this week with the Monday night opener at FedEx Field. After a weekend that left me exhausted right up until the moment I left work at noon on Monday I really had no idea how I would be able to pull it together and get up for the game. Thankfully, my friend Miller Lite decided he would help me out. That, some potato chips and a 9 dollar sandwich did the trick. I threw in some gumbo from a Cajun Viking fan and got a good laugh out of the crack jokes thrown at Michael Irvin. And it all added up to one wasted Leaf who got to watch a Vikings victory in a big stadium. We didn’t get any pics inside the stadium because we spent most of the game restraining ourselves from hurting annoying Redskins fans. One even had the nerve to talk shit about the Minnesota State Fair. Talk shit about anything you want but you do not mess with the fair or Como Zoo for that matter. In the end we won, I went home happy and was somehow still smart enough not to fight any of the moron Redskins fans who most likely represent the worst DC has to offer. Below are some pictures and a final thought from the game. I was actually a little bit hard on myself yesterday when I spoke about the missed opportunities following 9/11, I am not really heartless, just disappointed, last night during half time I definitely got a little choked up watching 90,000 people wave the American flag and sing “I’m Proud to be an American” and then joined in with a member of FDNY as we sang God Bless America. Redskins’ fans still suck but that was a nice a moment shared between complete strangers. Winning team fans after the game.
Michael Irvin likes crack, loves Dallas and is universally hated in DC.
Lefty QBs are better than right handed ones.
Boomer thinks we all needed to drink more, he was so wrong.


SKOL VIKINGS, LET'S WIN THIS GAME!
SKOL VIKING, HONOR YOUR NAME!
GO GET THAT FIRST DOWN
THEN GET A TOUCHDOWN!
ROCK'EM...SOCK'EM...
FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!
GO VIKINGS, RUN OUT THE SCORE!
YOU'LL HEAR US YELL FOR MORE!
V - I - K - I - N - G - S
SKOL, VIKINGS, LET'S GO!

9.10.2006

I am heartless

I am sorry. I don’t know how else to say it but tomorrow is the 5th anniversary of 9/11 and I could not care less.

Just about everyone is writing something about it and I have nothing to say. Even worse I have no desire to read what they are writing. Yes, I remember that day well, I know people who had their lives forever changed when their fathers were lost in the WTC. I remember who told me what had happened as I was walking into class. I remember calling my friends in NY frantically to make sure they were ok and I remember calling my friend in DC whose father works at the Pentagon. I remember the way the town felt that day and I also remember saying that after 6 months no one would care anymore.

I was only half wrong. People do still care after 5 years but in reality very little has changed. All the goodwill is just about gone, the world is not on our side anymore and people in this country no longer are looking out for each other the way they did just following the events of 9/11. So, on the anniversary when we remember what happened and all the good things that came in the aftermath I ask now five years later what has really changed? Not a whole lot if you ask me.

What 9/11 really represents to me is of course a tragedy but it is also a missed opportunity. We as people missed the opportunity to truly be affected by something huge, something that could have made us a better society, a better people and truly be something worth representing to the world. Instead, we are the same bloated society with misplaced ideals and a lack of personal responsibility. We have been foolishly led into conflicts that do not make us safer; we continue to be more concerned with the price of gas and the status of homosexual couples than about caring for the young and the poor or doing something intelligent like securing our borders.

Tomorrow night I will be at FedEx field watching the Washington Redskins and the Minnesota Vikings in the Monday night opener. I will not be thinking much about what happened on this day 5 years ago. Because to me what is sadder than the loss of 3000 American lives is how poorly those people’s memories are being represented.

9.08.2006

Happy almost Football Day

9.07.2006

Ive nothing to write home about
Nothing I have figured out
Still I have the same old doubts
Nothing to write home about


So I will just put up some pics of my weekend in NY and let them tell the story.


Ending your Friday night at a Sake bar that you keep calling China is a good way to get killed. Sake as you all should know is Japanese and they dont like being disrespected.

This is the beginning of the Gator game, see how focused those eyes are, clearly not drunk enough.


I want that girls shirt.

Things have obviously gone down hill, I am wet, alone and cant keep my tongue in my own mouth.

Mexican hat dances are fun.

I am an artist, do you see the depth in this picture?

Uh, could you open your eyes please?

We like PBR but it is in someones way.


Does my friend look gay in this pic?

I love Leak too.

So much beer, so much fun. That's all.

9.05.2006

Labor Day weekend (Why I need to move out of DC)

I tried writing a whole recap of what I did this weekend in NYC but I can barely remember all the details and don’t think it really matters anyway. The trip was amazing in the way you begin to reevaluate your life on the way home. Don’t get me wrong I love my friends in DC and living out here is ok but I always have a great time in New York. Every time I go there I hang out with great people and always seem to meet new people. That is one thing that does not happen in DC; new people rarely enter into my group of friends here. I like that about my friends in NY; they have good taste in friends and always bring something new and interesting to the equation. I also like that bars are open late and the subway is always running. I can’t think of a bad thing to say about the whole experience, even the hangovers weren’t bad. And even though the guys I stayed with called me Grandpa (I am a whole two years older than them) and most of the people I know there are about that age it was refreshing to spend time with a new crowd and interact with new people while I also got to spend time with people I had not seen in years. On my drive home, which was much better than the drive up I gave serious thought to what I am doing in DC and why I am still here. After more than two years I haven’t fallen in love with a single thing about this place and I came to the conclusion that I have to leave this year before I get stuck here in a place I don’t love because it’s easy. I will most likely celebrate my 26th birthday here later this year, but I will not celebrate my 27th here. I may move to NY, I may move to Tel Aviv or LA, I am not set on a single idea but I do know that my experiences in DC must come to a close sooner rather than later so that I can experience more out of life. And I think that is what I appreciate most about this trip, I am just not ready to settle in somewhere and my friends helped me see that.

So thank you all, now I have a resume that needs an update. I will put up some pics from Friday and Saturday night later.

9.01.2006

New York

I am back in the Big Apple, bitches. Have not been here since February and I am very pumped to be back in the city. I normally love taking drives in the car and the 250 miles between DC and NY are no exception but the fucking traffic was horrible last night. I hit traffic on the beltway, caught mystery traffic in Delaware and was greeted by about 45 minutes in the toll line to the Holland tunnel before getting through the tunnel which only had one lane open. So, I got in really late, parked my car in a lot that I have no idea how much it costs but really didn’t care at 2 am. And I have been working from some buddies of mine place all day. Sometimes there is nothing better than working from home. It has also allowed me to enjoy taking a stroll in Union Square. This morning as I ran out to Starbucks (normally I would never do this but I have a caffeine habit to feed) someone not only looked me in the eye and smiled as they passed by, they said good morning. Have I mentioned how I love New York yet?

Lastly, staying at my friends converted loft I found one thing very different. There refrigerator looks a lot different than my suburban 40 hour a week fridge. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Have a great labor day weekend all. Go Gators!!!