Monday, August 20, 2007

In Memoriam: Millie Roberts (1923-2007)

Had some sad news from back home this weekend, my Grandma Millie Roberts passed away unexpectedly Saturday morning. It appears she had a heart attack during the night - very sad.

She was 84, but was still very sharp and living an active life. Grandma Millie (as we called her) would golf during the week, and often hit up the casinos with the ladies on the weekends (as old ladies like to do). She twice won over $1,000 playing slot machines - and I always gave her grief cause I could never leave a casino with $10 in my pocket.

Her favorite place to be was at her cabin on a lake outside of the cities - and she spent most all of her summers there for the last 40+ years. Fittingly, she was spending time at her cabin with her daughter and family when she passed.

My last memories of her were from earlier this summer, when we had Josh's bachelor weekend up at her cabin. She was so genuinely thrilled that all the guys got together - and everyone was able to enjoy her cabin, spend some time on the lake, and genuinely enjoy the weekend. 2 of my buddies got to meet her, and they couldn't stop talking about kind she was.

She is survived by my dad and 2 of her other children, as well as 7 grandchildren. I'll be flying back to Minnesota this week to be a pallbearer in her funeral.

I'm not sure if there's a heaven or not - but it's kind of a nice thought to think she'll be welcomed into heaven and met by my Grandpa and her daughter, who both preceded her in death. I can kind of picture her saying, "Well, this is too fancy for me...but very nice. Mighty fine."

There's just never enough time. Rest in peace Grandma.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007


Barry B*nds hits #756
I take a little East Coast pride in that the guy who ended up with Bonds's 756th home run ball last night was from NY. Not only that, he and his buddy attended the game wearing Mets and Yankees jerseys - respectively. How soft is it in Northern California that they let a NY boy come in and steal their home run ball? Either way - heck of a payday for this 22 yr old kid, experts say he can unload it for around $400,000. A far cry from the 3 Million Mark McGwire's 70th home run fetched (that ball is now worth $100,000.)

Erin Burnett - my new infatuation
If I have the tv on during the day, pretty much the only channel I watch is CNBC, and the new jewel of the network is Squawk on the Street host Erin Burnett. Lots of networks hire the good looking anchor, but usually with no brains to go with the package. But Erin is a double threat - with looks and smarts. She was previously an investment banker with Goldman Sachs, and a VP with Citigroup before making the leap to CNBC. Since she began hosting, ratings are up 142% (this is likely because male stock market geeks like me can't get enough).

Tornado hits Brooklyn
A confirmed tornado hit Brooklyn overnight - maybe the first one ever. My place pretty much just had pelting rain and lightning. I think the most entertaining part of the whole event was hearing all the locals on the news saying the word 'Twista' in their New York accents. Has anyone since The Wizard of Oz called it a twista?

Tiger a sure thing?
Apparently Jim Nantz has already declared Tiger Woods a 4-shot favorite to win the PGA Championship this weekend. These days, the networks just pray that Tiger is in the hunt on Sundays....if not, ratings plummet. They say it'll be 100+ degrees all week in Oklahoma, so if it's a bunch of nobodies in contention this weekend - at least the announcers can kill some time discussing the ins and outs of the 'heat index'.

More hot golf action
East Coast Mark is headed to Arizona this weekend for some golfing with the fellas. The courses pretty much shut down from 11am-2pm because it's so hot, so we're teeing off around 6:30am every day. Monday - Wednesday I've got some meetings in Scottsdale, where I'll demand the air conditioning be set at 62. Odds-on favorite for the most overused phrase of the week? "But, it's a dry heat."
Yeah, and so is sticking my head in an oven.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Things that need to go away

Not a whole lot of explanation needed here - just a few things that I think we'd all be better off without:

The X-Games Did everyone see video of that skateboarder that fell 50 feet off the 'big air' ramp last night? That was the highlight of my week. Even better is how the X-Games announcers want us to believe that some 15-year old's skateboarding 720 is right on par with the greatest accomplishments in the history of sports. Hank Aaron, Walter Payton, Michael Jordan, and Billy the long-haired flunky from next door.

War Protesters Knock it off with the valid concerns. And the war protesters who showed up to heckle Bush when he was speaking at the Bridge Collapse? - classy touch.

People that talk about their kids too much Tell me again why you needed to buy a mini van since you only have one kid? Wow, that's so interesting! As much as I try, being a single male - I just can't relate and don't really care about swimming lessons and daycare issues.

Mango Salsas Salsa - fine. Mango - if you must. But why does every restaurant feel the compulsion to ruin otherwise decent food with a Fiji/Mexican condiment?.

Tattoos Yep. You've got that tribal arm band FOREVER. And wow, that dolphin on your ankle is so fetching! Bizarre piercings probably fall into this category as well. The only acceptable tattoo in my book is one to honor your kid should they die too young. That, or maybe a full-back Petra Nemcova tribute.

ESPN's 'Who's Now' segments Clearly they were just desperate to fill time during the dog-days of summer, but watching Jessica Biel dissect the 'battle' of Dwayne Wade vs. Tiger Woods made me want to get into this whole 'cutting' thing that kids are into now.

'The Wave' at baseball games I've got my beer in one hand, a hot dog in my lap...and standing and flapping my arms every 30 seconds is not conducive to ballpark enjoyment. And God forbid you're in the same section with the idiot trying to start the wave. A pimple-faced moron screaming at me for half an inning, "Come On!! Get up everyone!!" He likely has a tribal armband tattoo. I hate you.

Dumping the only reason to attend sports games Remember the excitement of Pepp going deep to Moss? KG with the cold blooded 20 foot jumper? Torii Hunter laying out for a highlight reel catch? All gone, never to return. We're left with a festering stew of mediocrity and forgettable nobodies. If you went to buy a Vikings jersey today...who would you get? Seriously. I'd like to be there when you ask with a straight face, "Do you guys have any authentic game-worn Tavarius Jackson jerseys left?"

Pro Hockey Let me count the ways you bore us.

Hillary Clinton Let me count the ways you annoy us.

And to send you off in peace, here is a video of this X-Games moron who suffers the wrath of everyone who's had to sit through 13 years of overexposure and air time granted to the X-games. He probably has a tattoo of Hillary Clinton on his ankle, just saying. Things to watch for:

1.) Group of moron punks with their shirts off - waving them around their heads.

2.) Empathetic commentary of Tony Hawk, who after watching this guy nearly die...says, "I can't believe he just landed a 720."

3.) Commentators telling us they've got they've got the 'best medical staff in the business'. Ever notice how everyone always has the best medical staff?

4.) Bone crushing, vertebrae pulverising hit delivered by an angry skateboard ramp. Enjoy!

"I feel like I'm watching an episode of Heroes." Can't make it up.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Minneapolis Bridge Collapse

Thinking about all the peeps back in Minneapolis. Kinda surreal that a bridge I've crossed hundreds of times now in rubble. Very sad.

Hopefully not too many casualties.

Talk about the mother of all traffic jams for the next 6 months.


Update: Really kinda hit home when they started showing the footage from the choppers overhead - and I can just picture the hundreds of times I'd cross that bridge on my way to the U. I lived at the U of M for 4 years, and would zip up 35W and exit just after crossing that bridge on my way to 'The White House' (our frat-like home for 3 years).