From the monthly archives:

September 2008

Resuscitate Guelph University’s Bullring!

by Dave on September 30, 2008

in Uncategorized

Calling all Gryphons, inebriates, b-boys and speaker-dancers… We need the old Bullring faithful. We need your magic.

herb-bullringIt has been literal eons since the heydays of the almighty Bullring. None of us who were there, however, will ever forget them. The sticky floors, lukewarm draft beer, neon signs, human blood and 90’s hiphop have since been replaced by a regular cleaning schedule, Columbian coffee, vegetarian omelets and the Indigo Girls. It’s high time we banded together and helped that old, round building of dreams recapture its former glory. Children of the 70s, 80s and 90s – Help us resuscitate the RING! If only for one, fleeting evening.

A half-baked scheme which endeavors to bring the wonder and frivolity of the Bullring back for one night is underway, and the architects of the plot are interested to know if anyone will be there to join us. So please ask yourself – If a small team of former Bullring fans, fanatics and employees somehow managed to revive the magic for a single night – would you attend the party? Would you dig out your old Ring paraphernalia, hail a Red Top Taxi and head up the hill to the greatest on-campus bash since the old girl closed her doors as a nightclub nearly a decade ago?

bullring2

If we get a decent response the wheels of fortune will be set in motion and we’ll do our best to convince the current owners to abandon the vanilla chai and biscotti long enough for us to bring Biggie and Tupac back for one more enchanted evening – most likely during Homecoming 2009. We also envision a cover charge to both keep out the tourists and also make it all worth the CSA’s time. They will be our greatest hurdle in putting this together.

You can also look forward to a new selection of Bullring gear – caps, toques, t-shirts – to commemorate the occasion and help you fly your Guelph colors as we descend further and further into the horrors of adulthood. Also coming soon will be perhaps the only existing video of a night at the ring, recorded by yours truly and various staff members the last night of exams, Spring 1998. And no – there are no clips of the infamous Hot Tub Party of 97. And thank Christ for that.

bullring4

The road will be a long one, so we’d better get started soon. Please join and leave your name in the discussion thread on the Bullring Facebook Group – as a petition of sorts – and we’ll keep you posted.

Wish us luck. If luck be with us – we’ll see you there this time next year.

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Another Day in Paradiso

by Dave on September 22, 2008

in Uncategorized

I’m currently sitting in my favorite North End coffee shop working away, and this afternoon I’ll head to my company’s office out in Wellesley. Megan’s wedding Friday night was a lot of fun, as was the One Shot at Pye party at Silvertone. I’ll save all the sordid details until I have the weekend’s many photos posted – but it was a doozy.

I also got to spend a lot of quality time with my little buddy Griffin, who you may remember from the Hissy the Roach posts from a few years back. We played video games, ate chocolate and watched funny puppy and kitty YouTube videos. I’ve really missed her and there was no better way to spend Sunday.

Wednesday I’m spending the whole day visiting clients, starting with my favorite replacement windows manufacturer in Woburn. Then it’s on to Weymouth and I’ll finish up in the Peabody area around 6pm. It’ll be a long one, but these folks haven’t seen me in many moons and it gots to be done. It’s nice having my car here, although I’ve already spent $50 on parking and will be hit up for an additional $25 when I get the car in a half hour to drive to the office. Better than an $800 Air Canada ticket, at any rate. Frigging pirates.

Speaking of the charga, the drive down Thursday was no big deal and I’m surprised I didn’t attempt it sooner. I made it in 8 hours, was checking in to the Peabody Marriott by 4pm and spent most of the trip listening to a great audiobook that I will write about in greater detail at a later date. It may change my life (work-wise and personal) and I have to share.

On with the day. One more Paradiso macchiato and I’m hitting the road. I could definitely live in Boston again some day, but we’ll have to see how the cookie crumbles. I surely feel comfortable in this city and have spent enough time here (almost 2/3 of my life) to be considered an honorary Masshole. And believe me, it is an honor. Now go feck yourself, kid.

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Back to the Bean Once Again.

by Dave on September 16, 2008

in Boston,Travels

It’s been over 7 months since I last graced the streets of Boston. That’s very, very hard to believe. With the exception of my 1.75 years spent living in England that’s the longest I’ve been away from the cradle of the revolution in 21 years. I’ve been so bogged down with my month of 5 weddings, work and dealing with family issues that I haven’t really had time to be excited – or apprehensive. Shall I break it down for the blog? Yesh? Then let’s begin.

Looking forward to:

  • Seeing my friends. I have organized, via Facebook (evite who?), a night out at a downtown bar for the only weekend night that I am free (not at a wedding) while I am in Boston. If they come, they come. But really I’ll only need a few key players to show up for it to be what I “need” as a Kaczynski-esque forest dweller on shore leave.
  • Seeing my little North End posse. Comprised of my friends’ children – namely Griffin, Maya, Lorenzo and Bella – I’ve missed these little guys and our Thursday night pizza/PS2 outings.
  • The North End Coffee tour. Weekday mornings spent at Paradiso, Beanstock, Villagio and other neighborhood bean water vendors, usually with Matt, Louis and others.
  • Work stuff. There are lots of new members of my Boston web design company (a quick pause for the cause) whom I have yet to meet in person. I look forward to a full week of office time, collaboration and several visits I have scheduled with clients in the area. I hope to do a lot of good in a short period of time.
  • New England Fall. My favorite season, and my favorite place to spend it. I plan to come down for American Thanksgiving this year as well, so it’ll be a nice double-dose of awesome Autumness.

Dreading:

  • Leaving my babies at a kennel. The breeder (who is awesome) said she would have taken them for the 4 days before my Mother and Sister get back to town, but she is renovating her entire ground floor and is having trouble caring for her own dogs at the time being. I have them scheduled for a last-minute kennel-cough vaccination tomorrow morning, and will be taking them to a vet recommended mom and pop operated place tomorrow night.
  • The drive. I have made the Canada – Boston run so many times in my life that I could do it in my sleep. But at the end of the day it’s 8 hours alone in a car each way. To prepare I have downloaded some new albums and audio books onto my iPod. I am curious to see if the books will keep my attention and maybe, just maybe, make the trip go a bit faster. I have everything from the newest Harry Potter to 7 Habits of Highly Effective People ready to go.
  • Sacrificing tangible, billable work time for face time with clients and my own company. I’m going to make sure I have some things outsourced so I’m not miles behind when I get back home on the 29th. About 313 miles, to be exact.

All things considered, I’m quite excited to see my peoples and walk the streets of my old hood. If you’re in the right mood, well rested and in possession of some phat tunes a long drive can go by fairly quickly. The blog will have a strong Boston theme over the next 10 days, lots of pictures from my new camera included, so get your beanpots out, find someone named “Sully” to sit next to and stay tuned.

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Monday’s Quotelet: Fish Fence Folly

by Dave on September 15, 2008

in Monday's Quotelet

fishinfence
As Ike’s raging waters receded, the mystery surrounding the disappearence of Nemo’s cousins was solved.

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Friday’s Quizzlet: Breakin’ Atoms

by Dave on September 12, 2008

in Uncategorized

Appetizer: When you drink soda, do you prefer to drink it from the bottle, a can, or after pouring it into a cup?
Cutting to the heart of the big issues again are we, quizzlet? That would depend on whether the cup was styrofoam, plastic or paper. And whether or not my other OCD symptoms had allowed me to leave the house after turning the lights on and off 33 times and checking to make sure the oven was off another 27.

Soup: What television show are you willing to stay up late to watch?
The First 48 and, obviously, Saturday Night Live – in which I still take great pleasure and have the utmost faith. It premieres tomorrow night with Mighty Mike Phelps hosting and Little Wayne as the musical guest/criminal. I imagine they’ll compare tattoo tears to gold medals. And if Tina Fey doesn’t literally fall over herself on the way to 30 Rock to play Sarah Palin in an opening scene cameo, I will eat my puppy. I will also be extremely impressed by her snark restraint – at which she’s not very adept.

Salad: Name one person, place, or thing you think of as brilliant.
If I were English I’d have already used the word 17 times today. Since I’m not I’ll give you one of each – The people who invented that atom smasher whatsit that is probably already letting giant squirrels in from a parallel dimension, the end of my dock, my new tennis racket / bug zapper thing. I take it with me when I let Shep out at night, and just stand by the front light while he does his business, culling the herd.

Main Course: Would you be willing to work 4 10-hour days instead of 5 8-hour days in order to save gas?
No, because I work from home. But my mother is willing to drive so far out of her way to get to a pump that will save her 3 cents a gallon – she uses more than what she’d save getting there. She is also willing to talk about where to go to get the lowest gas prices, which never vary around here by more than 3 cents, until my fucking ears start to bleed. The next time I think about gas it will be because I’ve just doused my head in it and am looking around for the BBQ igniter.

Dessert: If you were a superhero, what would you call yourself?
Super Dave. I just hope that the moniker is available. I’d further my originality by wearing costumes only made from genuine Saskatchewan seal skin.

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Calling All Family Tree Huggers

by Dave on September 4, 2008

in Uncategorized

Perhaps it’s my family health issues – who am I kidding… that’s exactly what it is – but I’ve felt a very strong desire recently to research and document a family tree of sorts. I’d like to use an online tool that allows multiple members of a family to have their own logins but be able to collaborate on the same tree.

I just saw an ad on TV for Ancestry.com, and it looks very impressive. I have had several others mentioned to me recently, and am a little unsure as to where I should invest my time and that of a few Aunts and Uncles on my Father’s side of the tree, and my own Mother on hers. On a related note, her second round of chemo was completed a little over a week ago, her prognosis is excellent and it looks like she’ll be around long enough to help me with this project – and very far beyond. Way to go, Bonnie.

Does anyone have eny experience with Ancestry.com, Rootsweb.com, Geneaology.com or any of the apparently wide range of family history/tree sites available? I’d appreciate the input.

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The first thing I thought when I first saw this last night was “Oh, the balls on this guy!” The introduction is a sample of Johnny himself referring to someone (in this instance meant to be Everlast) as “…one of the greatest entertainers I’ve ever seen”. As the song continues and the mix of acoustic and electric guitars, organ, sampled drums and an old Cypress Hill hook started to make sense that changed quickly to “This actually isn’t half bad.” Has Erik Schrody successfully pulled off a Johnny Cash cover using a high-pitched squeal and DJ Muggs from Cypress Hill itself? You be the judge.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JW4eAHsaq-0[/youtube]

“I never saw anything like it…” – Johnny Cash

The video doesn’t get any less cheeky as it superimposes archival footage of Cash performing with Schrody, the two even exchanging winks and glances. Think the video for Weezer’s “Buddy Holly” minus the Fonz. All the members of Everlast‘s band smile, wink and dance along and the mood is meant to imply mutual respect between Johnny and Erik. Does he consider himself Cash’s heir-apparent. I doubt it, and you have to take the spectacle with the good nature it was intended – but still. The balls on this guy!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYZ40p8H2Kk[/youtube]

Schrody’s the man with the master plan.

Covering Cash is a risky business. It’s akin to belching in church to many music fans. Schrody has never been timid or self conscious though and I’m not entirely shocked that he went for this. His re-inventions – from West Coast GQ rapper rolling with Ice-T’s syndicate posse to Hell’s Kitchen Irish Hoodlum to country-rock troubador – have amazed me every time. Not because they’ve been so drastic, but because they’ve been so incredibly successful.

“Jump Around” made Everlast, DJ Lethal and Danny Boy very rich men when it dropped in 1992 and their follow up House of Pain album sold quite a few copies as well. The third one, not so much. When he re-appeared 3 years later in 1999 with Whitey Ford Sings the Blues no one had any idea that “What It’s Like” would become a mega-hit going platinum and winning him several Grammys that year. Not to mention his contribution to Santana’s Supernatural album, “Put Your Lights On” which helped Carlos sell about a bazillion copies that same year.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffCz1uCn2-Y[/youtube]

If you’ve never seen this before – you’ll be speechless.

So is “Folsom Prison Blues” a clever cover or a disrespectful piece of crap? I’d love to hear everyone’s opinions as I know there are likely to be many when this video gets more and more airplay and the album “Love, War and the Ghost of Whitey Ford” is released later this month. Me? I like it and am looking forward to blaring it in my car later this afternoon. That will be the true test. I think he can take it, so let Everlast have it in the comments below.

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thailand-unrest

Sammy named his new machete “The Peacemaker”, and his friends thought that was a little too optimistic.

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