Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

We hope you enjoyed trick or treating as much as we did!  Medford really put out a great spread for the kids!  There are some really spooky houses, especially our neighbor on Filbert Street and a very cool house on Branch Street that has scary speakers set up in the graveyard.

Happy Halloween!


IMAG0408.jpg


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Medford Halloween Parade

image from www.flickr.comBurlington County came out in throngs tonight for Medford's annual Halloween parade.  Postponed from yesterday due to the wild weather, the party was in full swing tonight, as children filled their baskets with candy, classic cars rolled down Main Street, candidates pressed the flesh and floats of all sorts lit up the night.

I'm not sure how I have missed this event in my 10 years living in South Jersey.  It was way more fun that I would have thought possible for a cold Sunday evening.  While certainly a night for the kids, the folks at Braddock's Tavern also made sure the adults had libations. There was music and dancing and I'm glad I stirred from my nap in time to get over to the fun.  All the photos are on my Flickr site.

Whoever planned the event also had it wrap up at 8:20, so we could all get home to watch the Eagles smack the Cowboys around.


Saturday, October 29, 2011

Not A Good Start To The Day

The big Halloween 2011 nor'easter is rocking the Philly area today and the rain has already started to freeze here in South Jersey.

Drive safe on your way to get the milk, bread and eggs!

IMAG0395.jpg


Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday Fantastic Four - Cheesiest Movie Lines

I mean come on.  There are some really bad lines in some really good movies.  It amazes me that writers who can create such great work for 90 minutes turn into fools when it comes time for the film's climax.

This week's installment comes diectly from last weeks four best movie lines Fan 4 and was inspired by a friends suggestion that my #1 Cheesiest Movie Quote was actually one of the four best.  Ugh!

What Are The Four Cheesiest Movie Lines?

  1. 'Nobody puts Baby in a corner.' -- Patrick Swayze as Johnny Castle in 'Dirty Dancing.' I really love this movie, but this was they best they could do for the Bad Boy confronts the parents scene????
  2. 'You had me at hello.' -- Renee Zellweger as Dorothy Boyd in Jerry McGuire.  This was a chick flick, but such awful treacly stuff should be reserved for the Hallmark Channel.
  3. 'I'm the king of the world!' -- Lenardo DiCaprio as Jack Dawson in 'Titanic.'  What a Titanically crappy line.
  4. 'You're why cavemen chiseled on walls.' - Greg Kinnear as Simon Bishop in 'As Good As it Gets.'  Yeah we all say stupid things when we see a woman naked for the first time, but who brings up CAVEMEN????

So that's my top four.  I can think of a million more.  What do you have for the discussion?


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Just to Make The Night Interesting!

We've got a little water and gas main problem here in Medford. Kids are asleep and hopefully we get to stay. Lots of guys standing around deciding what to do right now.

Sigh!

IMAG0389.jpg


Monday, October 24, 2011

Good Morning From Medford, NJ!

We have a great sunrise here to start our day. I hope you have a great week!


IMAG0381.jpg


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Uncle Matt's Birthday Party

It's a beautiful night for a party by the fire. The kids and I are back here in Delco for a family birthday party at 3447.  Uncle Matt is opening his gifts as the kids play on the hammock and the adults warm themselves by the firepit.  Great food and wonderful company make it a night to remember.

IMAG0376.jpg

A great end to a fun weekend!  I hope you all enjoyed this beautiful weeknd as much as I did.



Judging the Scarecrows in Medford

We are walking a busy Main Street in Medford today, taking a look at all of the scarecrows set up for the annual contest. It's a lot of fun for a nice Sunday!


IMAG0373.jpg


Saturday, October 22, 2011

A Full Day of Youth Sports

It's a beautiful day here in South Jersey and the Another Delco Guy clan is getting ready for a full day of soccer and baseball with a morning meal at Medport Diner.

We all have our uniforms (and our hair) adjusted just so. Our cooler is packed with between game meals. Distracting activities for Emma are all ready to go for the second baseball game.

We are looking forward to a great day in the beautiful autumn weather. Enjoy your Saturday as well!


IMAG0367.jpg


Friday, October 21, 2011

Friday Fantasic Four

Ok.  We're back for week two of the revived Friday Fantastic Four.  I've been doing some movie watching late nights recently and decided that it's time for a movie-themed Fan 4.  This was one of my first Fantastic Fours, back in the 90s, and my tastes have changed some since then, so it's worth a re-visit.

What are your Four Favorite Movie Lines?

'We'll always have Paris.' -- Humphrey Bogart as Rick in "Casablanca"

'I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything or process anything.  I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed.  I don’t want to process anything bought or sold.  What I really want to do with my life, what I want to do for a living – is to be with your daughter.  I am good at it.' -- John Cusack as Lloyd Dobler in 'Say Anything'

'I think you will find these are the exact same dimensions as our gym back in Hickory.' –- Gene Hackman as Coach Norman Dale in 'Hoosiers'

'I hope when I am your age, I’ll be smarter than that. --- You sure are off to a slow start.' Bruce Willis and Paul Newman as Bruce Roebuck and Sully Sullivan in 'Nobody’s Fool'

There are a lot of great quotes in 'Casablanca,' but this one means a lot to me right now.  The Lloyd Dobler speech is his character's essence, and really sums up what being a teenager was in the late 80s.  'Hoosiers' has a lot of great lines too, but this one says to me, 'Anyone can do anything.'  'Nobody's Fool' is a beautifully written movie, easily one of my favorites.  Paul Newman, Jessica Tandy, Bruce Willis and even Melanie Griffith are masterful!

So what are your top 4?  Everyone have a great weekend!


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Beautiful To Me

There’s a flower called a Columbine that I love.  It’s a green, leafy plant that puts out lots of blue flowers with white centers in May.  The flowers are tough little things.  They can handle wind and rain pretty well.  It’s not everybody’s idea of the perfect flower, but I love them.

The house I always wanted is gone now, but I’ll always remember its peeling yellow paint and mis-matched red trim.  The bad kitchen and the falling down shed.  The wide screened porch was out of place in a fishing village, but it was a great place to sit and read and listen to the harbor sounds.  The front yard was swampy and rocks filled the back yard, but there was peace in that house for me.

I don’t know many people who like the smell of low tide, but it has always been one of my favorite things.  It is the beginning and the end, life and death.  Some how I find all of nature present it that one scent.  I’ll drive miles and miles to sit at low tide and have the wind blow in my face.  It’s about the most perfect that things can be.

There is a moment of dizziness when you have pushed yourself as far as you can go and you must pause to consider if this is it or if more is possible.   Sometimes it comes on the basketball court, other times sitting at a computer keyboard, often just between two people.  As your heart races and your chest heaves, your mind reels and you see he expanse of all that is and can be.  It’s a moment of perfection.  The infinite is possible in that moment, but the abyss yawns as well.  The tension in that choice is life and life is beautiful.

-- I wrote this in April, 2004.  I recently found it while cleaning up my hard drive and thought its sentiments were worth sharing. 


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pig Takes Over Ike's Computer

We are monitoring a tense standoff between a pig and Ike in the SFS office at UArts.

More details as they become available.


IMAG0357.jpg


Monday, October 17, 2011

Cherry Hill Median Wildflowers

IMAG0354
I have the distinct displeasure of commuting along Route 70 from Medford, NJ to Philadelphia, PA Each day. It's a nasty mess of tail lights on the way in each morning and then again on the way home each day.  I do my best to keep my cool each day, listening to NPR or one of my Audible books, but there are still some days when I feel like my head is going to explode.

Cherry Hill is the worst of the commute traffic-wise.  It's seems like the idiots per mile quotient is the highest there.  On the other hand, the town has planted some great wildflower gardens in the median strip, so at least there is some beautiful color to look at this fall as we sit idling in snarled traffic.  The flowers seem to have peaked after looking for a long time like they were just uncut grass.

Some days, it's the small things you need to treasure!


Saturday, October 15, 2011

Main Street After Midnight

I am that unique combination of bone tired and wired that only those 'in the biz' really know.

This is a shot of what it looks like when I get home.


IMAG0353-2.jpg


Friday, October 14, 2011

Spin Doctors - XPN Free At Noon Show

One of the benefits to working in Center City Philadelphia is the random free event that comes your way.  Today it was a quicky show by Spin Doctors at World Cafe Live.  The lunchtime event is part of WXPN's Free at Noon Series and was my first time at World Cafe in quite some time. 

If you were a white, 40 something in the area around 32nd and Walnut today at noon, I think you were at this gig.  Joe Manning (thanks for the idea) was the IMAG0344youngest person in the house except for the 5 year old girl whose parents brought her along and who enojyed herself, dancing in the aisles.  The rest of us were graduating college the last time we saw a Spin Doctors show.  At one point the bassist, Mark White whipped out his cell phone camera and took a picture of the crowd.

The woman next to me said "Look mom, our biggest crowd in 20 years!" when she saw him snap the picture.  It may be true, but the original four Spin Doctors put on a good show, ripping out extra long versions of their hits "Little Miss Can't Be Wrong" and "Two Princes," along with four other of their lesser-known numbers.  It was pretty laid back, with lead singer Chris Barron sipping from a Starbucks cup, White snapping pictures, and drummer Aaron Comess looking relaxed behind his Yamaha kit, in a Union Jack t-shirt and flannel.  Guitarist Eric Schenkman really stole the show, launching into extended solo riffs to close out each of the band's numbers. 

After the XPN show went off the air, the band did an unreleased blues song called "Scotch and Water Blues" which Barron said was from the time that they used to play New York City blues clubs.  Down on the floor, the music and vocals sounded strong and pretty crisp for what was essentially a rehearsal.  In the back of the room,  vocals were a bit muffled, but that was the room more than anything. 

It was interesting to see this pretty stripped down show, with the Hartke and Marshall amps and road boxes right up on stage with the performers and almost no lighting effects at all.  Having a good time with some good early 90s music was the rule of the day, no smoke, only music.  Also interesting to see the band work the table, shilling the new (old) album.  At least they are still performing...

Tonight, Spin Doctors will perform at World Cafe Live at 8pm, doing the entire Pocket Full of Kryptonite album as part of their 20th anniversary tour.  Plenty of tickets are still available!


Friday Fantastic Four - Footloose and Movie Re-Makes

So the re-make of the 80s classic Footloose comes out today.  Kevin Bacon is nowhere to be seen, and there isn't a feathered, blow dry cut on any of the cast. 

The original was made just as I was starting high school, with all of the dances and hormones attendant thereto.  While there wasn't anyone who looked remotely like Lori Singer at a St. James dance, we sure wished there was!  Given its special place in my movie memories, it's pretty tough to see this one get re-made, which leads us to this week's Friday Fantastic Four:

What Are the Four Best Movie Re-Makes of All Time?

  1. Casino Royale - Daniel Craig is angry, haunted and just freaking excellent. Maybe the best Bond movie ever.  The original was really a disaster - a send up of spy movies, not a real Bond.
  2. Ocean's 11 - both were amazingly good films, Clooney isn't Sinatra, and there's no one like Dean Martin, but the rest of the re-make cast is pretty darn solid and it's a beautiful film to look at.
  3. The Parent Trap - Lindsay Lohan as a cute pair of twins, Dennis Quaid as her clueless father.  A favorite of my kids and a few other folks I know.  The original stars a button cute Hayley Mills
  4. Meet Joe Black - visually beautiful film with a really creepy plot.  Anthony Hopkins and Brad Pitt are scarily good.  Fredric March starred in the movie that inspired the 1998 remake.

Everyone have a great weekend!  I don't know about you, but I am looking forward to some downtime.


Thursday, October 13, 2011

Insomnia

She returns to me in the quietest moments just before dawn

When the inky blackness of night stains the sky a navy blue

The scent of her hair wakes me from my restless dreams

I reach out, feeling for the soft skin of her arm

Leaning into the phantom tresses

Only to find the bed empty

And my pillow damp with tears


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

On Neighbors

We've got it pretty good where we live.  We live on a very quiet street, safe to play on and with a park, dining, shops and other kids within a block.  Every house has a friendly dog or two, bunnies are everywhere, the houses are well-cared for and everyone smiles and waves as you go by.

The folks who live right next door have two teenage girls, but even so it's way quieter that you would expect.  One neighbor lets the kids use the pool in the summer and another is my daughter's teacher. 

There is a creek with a trail for the kids to walk on, some interesting woods and fields for boys to be boys in and some nice swings for little girls to have fun on.  Medford Village is a pretty darn nice place to live.

Last night, one of my neighbors and I were talking and she said, "So what are you going to do at night now that the Phillies have lost?"  I chuckled and said, "Oh you noticed I am a big Phils fan?" She kind of looked down and said, Well I can see right in your living room windows from my bedroom."

Time to buy some curtains!


Monday, October 10, 2011

My Little Chef

It's the unexpected, stolen moments that make having a little girl so much fun. Everyone have a good week!


IMAG0334.jpg


Sunday, October 09, 2011

Pirate Boys!

John had a great time yesterday with his buddies Stevie and Dev at La Campagnola's Octoberfest. The fun continued at the Duffs' house last night and today the hits were plentiful as John and Stevie's War Eagles team beat up on the Marlton Reds 17-7.

We are on the way to Delco to watch he Birds with the family. Everyone have a great day!

IMAG0326.jpg

The girls and Duff had a good time yesterday too, enjoying the moonbounce, face painting, and assorted other parking lot fun.


Friday, October 07, 2011

Friday Fantastic Four

I was fascinated this week but the outpouring af emotion over the death of Steve Jobs.  I had always considered him marketer, an organizer and not really a person of great substance.  On his death though, I found the sheer volume of his quotes from speeches and essays to be astounding.  My brother noted, "You have to wonder how he had the time."

Obviously, in retrospect, I was wrong on Jobs.  He was one of the most influential people of the last 50 years.  He made tech cool, revolutionized industrial design, was a game-change for the music industry and so much more.  The world will be a much duller, less beautiful, less classy place without him.

So, here's a Fantastic Four suggested by a loyal reader:

What Four People Accomplished More In The Last 50 years Than Steve Jobs?

  1. Nelson Mandela - crushed apartheid, founded a new nation, changed the world.  A mega inspiration for Africa and the world.
  2. Bill Gates - the anti-Jobs, created the operating system most of the world uses, uber geek now doing amazing work though his foundation.
  3. Oprah - created a media empire, brought books to the masses, world is waiting for her next move
  4. Mikhail Gorbachev - perestroika, glasnost, what more can you say? Had the courage to realize that the communist experiment was doomed and moved to free millions.

Jobs did a lot, but these folks did more.  Who are your four?


Thursday, October 06, 2011

Occupy Philly

It's a beautiful day for a walk, so I took some time earlier today to head up Broad Street to Dilworth Plaza, next to City Hall to see the Occupy Philly rally/demonstration/gathering.  Honestly, if not for the police on every corner and the middle of Broad Street, you might not know anything was going on.

image from www.flickr.com From 200 feet away, there was no sign of the latest outgrowth of the Occupy Wall Street movement.  On my way into work today, there were helicopters in the air and news trucks everywhere.  By noon though the 200 or so Occupiers were mostly surrounded by cops, confused homeless people, citizens documenting the situation,  and folks like me, just enjoying the day.

Clearly the Occupiers had thought things were going to be bigger, staging a Medic area, a family zone, sign painting stations and food distribution areas.  None of that appears to be really necessary.  There were plenty of signs and food. 

What there wasn't was a coherent message.  Forgiving student loans was a common these, corporate greed another.  But mostly the crowd seemed to be trying to convince itself that the gathering meant something.  I just didn't feel it.  To me, the folks there looked like an odd blending  of the kind of folks you see on the steps at UArts every day and some seriously aging hippies.  There were also several kids who can't play guitar.  Maybe they read somewhere that you need to have guitars at protest rallies.

I have to say that i see this movement as a left wing version of the Tea Party.  Nothing too organized, very diffuse ideaology, no center theme.  Except that they are angry with the way things are and they want change.  Both groups are dissatisfied with the way the nation we live in is being run.  Neither seems to have a clue as to what to do about it though.

The Tea Party movement was co-opted by the far right of the Republican Party, and this Occupy movement seems to have been co-opted by labor unions.  It will be interesting to see if the unions have as much success focusing the anger of the Occupiers.  It will also be interesting to see how many show up tomorrow.


Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Phils Set To Close It Out

While some might argue that it would be better for the Phils to drop today's 4th game of the NLDS in St. Lois, so they can win it here at home in front of the CBP faithful, I am here to tell you the Phils will win tonight and end this nailbiter of a series.  They've done everything possible to create interest and buzz in the first round of the playoffs, but this one is only going 4 games folks.image from www.flickr.com

They've come from behind, blown a big lead, and hung on by their fingernails in the first three games.  I recommend stocking up on the Xanax and Pepto for tonight's tilt as well.  Oswalt looked great in his last start, but the Phils' bats, especially at the bottom of the line up could use a wakeup call

The Texas Rangers have already taken one Cinderella out of the playoffs, dispatching the Rays, who dropped 3 straight after opening the series with a win.  Now it's time for the Phils to end the Cardinals season and rest up for the NLCS.

It's great being in town right now, with the seas of red on the sidewalks, the bridges decked out and encouraging the home team and a giant jersey making its way around town.  I made it down to the staggeringly difficult Game 2, but sadly I have a work commitment, so I will miss out on the action, but thank goodness for my HTC Droid Thunderbolt.

Go Phils!


Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Scents From The Past

Isn't it amazing how much emotion the whiff of a specific scent can create, launching you into the time machine to a place so far removed from your current existence?

You know what I mean right?  A former lover's perfume leaves you useless and distracted in a meeting for two hours.  The tang of juniper can nearly conjure the taste of of your first gin and tonic.  The power of the memory is enough to cause you an almost physical reaction, from the warmth of desire to the chill from the flowery scent of a funeral home.

For me, the smell of roast beef brings me back to Sunday nights at my grandmother's house.  The particular smell of the older Wawa markets brings me back to nights spent working overnight and the 3 am coffee run.  The scent of oranges and vanilla return me to my mother's holiday kitchen as a teenager.  Sage transports me to the cliffs of La Jolla and the smell of chalk to my 4th grade classroom. The smell of tomatoes on my hands to my grandfather's garden.

Somehow, the mind holds it all, bringing it back when the moment is most exquisite.  Take some time this week to enjoy the smells of fall around us.  It's the time of burning leaves, mulled apple cider, pumpkin pie and the first crispness in the morning air.  See what you remember!


Monday, October 03, 2011

Sbarga Will Give It A Go

The restaurant space at the corner of Broad and Pine on the first floor of Symphony House in Center City Philadelphia has had a terrible history. The signs are going up today for celebrity chef Kevin Sbraga's eponymous new restaurant in the space. I am looking forward to seeing what the Johnson and Wales trained chef and his wife can bring to the space that last housed noodles joint Chew Man Chu and that opened as the forgettable DuJour.

I will get in there as soon as it's open and get you a review.


IMAG0265.jpg


Sunday, October 02, 2011

Happy Birthday Andrew!

In between the Eagles' loss and the impending Phillies win, we are celebrating my nephew Andrew's birthday. The pork was outstanding, the company is excellent and I need to get a firepit!


IMAG0262.jpg