Saturday, December 29, 2007

Lazy Recuperation Saturday & The Quest for HD

Today Sharkey and I were supposed to head up to North New Jersey to have a belated Christmas time with my brother his family and my Mom. Unfortunately, Sharkey and I came down with the tummy flu so we did not make the trip. So we had a restful, quiet and recuperative Saturday. We took a cue from the Maggie dog:


We are both feeling a lot better and we pretty much were vegetables all day.

As you know, I began my quest for High Definition a few weeks ago with the purchase of an HD LCD TV. So after I realized my existing DirecTV was not cutting it, I setup Verizon to come in the first part of January to install HD FIOS. So last week I was watching DVD's and was thinking that my DVD player is 7 years old. I've had it as long as Sharkey and I have been married. So then that led me start researching HD DVD players. So I was looking around and was thinking of spending some Christmas gift card money on a new player. But I found the deal of deals on They are selling a Toshiba HD DVD player for $179 with free shipping and you get 10 HD DVD's with it. So being that HD DVD's retail for about $25, they are actually paying me to buy this player. Well sort of....

toshiba a3


But wait it does not end there. So when the new TV came I quickly found out my old universal remote was not able to control it along with everything else. So I had to go find another universal remote. So I looked around and found the Logitech Harmony 880. It's pretty sweet. You hook it to your computer with a USB cable, then you go through this interface and just type in your component models and it does the rest. It even creates "Activities" like "Watch TiVo" or "Watch DVD." So with the activities, you just hit the appropriate activity button and the remote will turn on the correct device(s), switch TV modes, and turn on the correct audio modes. It makes using all the audio/visual equipment way, way easy. Sharkey was nice enough to be my hand model:


But I "think" that's it, and it's what I told Sharkey too. With this last upgrade I believe I have everything I need for some HD enjoyment.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Ninja Warrior

OK, so a couple of posts ago I described how I am Japanese, but have no real ties to the land of the rising sun. I admit I am a whitey. But then there must be something genetic within me that catches my attention for certain things of Japan. I mean I am open to certain things that others would be totally opposed to, like sushi. Sharkey's relatives cringe that we eat raw fish from time to time. Of course these are the same family who say that to us as they eat pickled herring and lye soaked fish (now seriously people what do you think is worse???). Anyway, if you know JP, you know my interests are few and far between: golf, electronics/tech, Anime, and video games. With that I have been a somewhat faithful viewer of the G4 network. And there's a show that is really addictive called Ninja Warrior. Essentially, it is a show about an obstacle course. It takes place in Japan and it's a huge phenomenon there. There are 5 stages and some of them are just insane. But just as interesting are the crazy people who compete, which is also why my Japanese genes kick in (cause it's fascinating to think, these are "my" people):

But the real deal guys are the ones who are really fit and have excellent upper body strength. And if you have what it takes, you too can be like Makoto Nagano winner of Ninja Warrior!!! =)

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Samsung, The Offical TV of the NFL

So this week, I finally got my LCD!! It was shipped right in time for Christmas from


So like my MacBook post, I have to show you all a picture of the unwrapping process:


So I carefully took it out of the box, then hooked it to my entertainment system. Unfortunately I quickly came to realize that this TV was light years ahead of my existing equipment, and my existing standard video cable was not cutting it with this TV. So off to the Radio Shack I went for new component video cables for my DVD player and home theater receiver. I came back and hooked up everything, and powered it up.


It looks pretty good and DVD's look awesome. But the existing DirecTV connection is just so-so. See the thing is the LCD can process a lot more video information than what my satellite dish is giving it. So essentially the dish isn't giving the TV enough information. So the result is sort of a grainy picture. So this led me to the next change in the home audio/video equipment. I called Verizon up yesterday and we'll have HD FIOS installed the first week of January 2008!!! They are offering a deal right now where you get phone, internet, and HD TV for $150/month and you also get a free 19" Sharp Aquos LCD TV. Hello High Definition! Right in time for the Super Bowl!!!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

HD Anyone? LCD Anyone?

So this week I received my job review and year end bonus. I told Sharkey early this week depending on what the bonus was I'd either call her and tell her we were going out to eat somewhere nice or that is was LCD time (i.e. time to upgrade the family room 27" tube TV to 32" flat screen). Well the review went well and I called Sharkey to tell her it was LCD time!!!

Tonight I ordered the LCD from with no tax and free shipping. It's a Samsung 32" LCD flat screen HDTV:

It's not the largest flat screen available, but it fits a few requirements:

1. It fits into the entertainment cabinet, (which it must per Sharkey), without me having to "alter" the entertainment cabinet with a circular saw

2. It has a built in HD tuner, 8000:1 contrast, 720p, and selective modes for games, movies, & sports. It is a Geek's dream come true

3. It is gadgetry extreme & received great reviews on CNet.

So now the question at hand is, drop DirecTV for Verizon Fios TV or upgrade to DirecTV HD?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Racial Profiling? How about Racial Marketing?

So I pick up the mail the other day and weed through all the solicitations and junk mail. And this beautiful piece of advertisement catches my eye:


This thing has no other English on it except for "Dish Network" and my name and address. how did I get this mailer? Could it be they think I am from Japan because of my last name? So if you wondered if racial marketing exists, wonder no more my friends!! What Asian marketing list from hell did I make it on? OK, so what you have to know is that my last name is the most Japanese thing about me. I couldn't tell you what that flier said beyond Dish Network. I admit I do eat Japanese food like miso soup, sushi, udon, teriyaki, katsu, etc. But I am as the Japanese Nationals say a BANANA!! I am yellow on the outside and white on the inside! Come to think of it, when Sharkey and I first dated her parents were freaked out a bit (before they met me of course) that I may be too foreign for her. I think her Mom even asked if I ate ethnic foods. Sharkey said, "Oh yeah he sure does, he made us tacos just the other night!" Needless to say, I'm thinking I'm not picking up Dish Network anytime soon. I'm thinking it could be difficult to read my monthly bill in Japanese... =)

Sunday, December 09, 2007


OH.... YEAH!!!!!

What Will the Future Hold?

Today I went with Sharkey to a Christmas concert she played in at a retirement center. It was a lot of fun! They played some familiar and not so familiar tunes. The retirement center was not your typical nursing home. It was an assisted living place and a pretty posh one at that. It had beautiful hardwood everywhere, crystal vases decorating tables, plush furniture, oh and a bathroom around every corner, you know "gotta go, gotta go, gotta go right now!!!" Where Sharkey's group played looked like a Broadway Theater. It was overall very impressive. I asked one of the staff when I could move in. =)

So I'm sitting there among the Senior Citizens in the theater and it got me thinking. So what will it be like when I hit that age? I mean Lord willing I make it to retirement and all. But think about it. Will I be talking about the "good old days?" Remember, when I had my new fangled MacBook and I used to watch DVD's and how Nintendo Wii was all the rage. And I can remember when clothes had to be dry cleaned and we used cell phones to text message each other. Of course that was when the 1st Internet was in place and I used to have my own BLOG to jot down all my thoughts. So will my grandchildren think I'm from Mars and dated? Will I wear velcro sneakers and pull my pants up to my armpits? I'll talk about all my television shows and how I remember all the great stuff as I slurp my protein Boost shake.

Friday, December 07, 2007


Why? Why do people do the things they do? I just do not get it. Case in point. I used my educational discount to buy Sharkey a new MacBook Pro laptop less $200 and Apple was running a deal at the time where if you bought a MacBook you could get an iPod for $80. The iPod was the 30GB Black one that can play videos. So our master plan was to sell the iPod on eBay to get back some of the cash we forked out for the MacBook Pro. So last week I took some photos, Sharkey wasn't satisfied with my photos, so she took more photos of the iPod. So I used both of our photos and I setup the auction to go for 5 days and waited. So today the auction closed at $260. I just don't get it. If you go to, you can buy a new 80GB iPod for $249. So why buy mine? I'm not complaining of course, but I just do not get it. What was it? The eBay competition? My brilliant advertising on eBay? Doubt it. So I ask, "Why?"

On another note, I saw this little clay-mation skit on Saturday Night Live and I had to post it when I found it on YouTube. I think it's hysterical:

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgiving Travel...

So I know what you are all thinking. This post is about the woes of airline travel on the 2nd most busy time of the year. The news people are going bananas on how the airports are madness, parking is nightmarish, crowds at the security checkpoints are out the terminal, blah...blah....blah....

So Sharkey and I started our travels to the Mid West yesterday. We also took my Mom to the airport who was traveling to NC to see my brother and his family. So we started off to get to the airport 3 hours before all of our flights. Here's how MADDENING Thanksgiving travel went for us ON THE 2ND BUSIEST TRAVEL DAY OF THE YEAR!!!!

1. We get to the airport and use the off site parking service total elapsed time 15 minutes.

2. We arrive at the terminal and check our bags. Humm... not too many people here yet, total elapsed time 10 minutes.

3. We get to security, hey look the line isn't so bad again, total time through security 10 minutes

So we now have 2 hours and 25 minutes before our flight. We have some Sabarro pizza, I finish my graduate paper that's due Monday, and we just sit around before our flight.

So the plane takes off, on time, we land, we get to baggage claim and our bag arrive in, no joke, 5 minutes. So at this point I'm thinking "do I say out loud this was the most non-problematic travel ever, naahhh better not, still have to pick up the rental car." So we pick up the rental car, (Saturn Aura, hey it's not bad, pretty sweet ride actually) total time 5 minutes, and here we are driving in the frozen land known as Minnesota.

So Happy Turkey Day to all!!! Wear your fat pants!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

You Know You Are In Trouble When....

1. You are mentoring with someone who says, "I don't know what to do. I'm at a loss" then asks you what you think he should do...

2. You go to sip your brewed tea and the thermal mug is too hot to hold, but you foolishly decide to take a sip anyway...

3. You pick up your wife's camera bag and her Nikon D70 falls 4 feet to the floor lens first...

4. You bite into your sweet & sour chicken lunch plate and it has neither sweet nor sour taste...

5. You install the Apple MacBook automatic update and are no longer able to use your HP Multifunction printer...

Sad but true... All of these things happened to me in the past two weeks. You really cannot make this stuff up. I think that's why Seinfeld is so funny, he points out that things are CRAZY for real!!

So of course after all this stuff happens you have no choice but to drown your sorrows with a milkshake.... A Wawa milkshake:


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

One of the Best Gifts Ever

This year for my birthday Sharkey gave me these:


You Follow Your Dreams

You Laugh At My Jokes

You Give Great Hugs

You Keep My Secrets

You Keep Me Warm

Just to name a few. See almost every day I have to wear a dress shirt, and this gift reminds me how much Sharkey loves me without anyone else really knowing. Pretty cool, no?

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Customer Service, a Golden Apple

If you remember, JP is a stickler for good customer service. I have found that good service today does not come around very often. So when it does you have to tell other people about it.

So recently to support Sharkey's photography hobby which is quickly becoming a side business, we purchased her an Apple MacBook Pro.

Since I go to Graduate School, I get a discount on Apple equipment, also nabbed her the new Adobe Photoshop CS3 suite at like 1/5 the actual price (thank you academic software discount!!!),

and a free iPod through a rebate deal.

So here's where my awesome purchase took a turn. The order was hosed up because my wonderful credit card company "protected" me from fraud by denying the entire Apple purchase, which they perceived to be a red flag, out of the ordinary spending profile for JP, purchase. So I straighten things out with the credit company telling them, "Um, guys I really am purchasing that much equipment," and then call Apple to have them retry the authorization. So the iPod and Adobe software shipped, but the MacBook Pro was held up and the customer service guy couldn't reauthorize my card, but had to issue another order for the MacBook Pro and assured me it would not invalidate the iPod rebate.

So today of course my rebate was denied. I called the rebate service and they told me because of the legality of the offer, they couldn't give me the rebate and asked if I'd like to be transferred to Apple Customer Relations to file a complaint. So I'm like "You better believe it, this totally sucks that your guy told me incorrect information." So I talk to Customer Relations and they put me on hold for 10 minutes while they investigate my options. So on hold, I'm figuring out which appropriate response I'll use next:

1. I need to talk to a manager (with strong voice)
2. I'm returning the iPod and want my money back (with annoyed/strong voice)
3. I'm going to file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau (with pissed off, bat you in the crotch voice)
4. So wait, because I listened to your rep, which invalidated my rebate I have to eat the iPod (with determined, logical, come on see it my way, nice voice)

So the rep gets on the phone and says, "I cannot give you the rebate due to legal reasons, but I talked with our sales division and hey agreed to credit your card the amount of the rebate." And here I was getting ready to use response 4, and she cut me off. But I was impressed that they did give me what I wanted. And let's face it, in the end, isn't that what it is all about?

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Class Over, Soup Time

My class from hell finished on Monday. The presentation went well, I rocked out the exams and ended up with an "A." Not bad, but the work definitely went way over what it should have been. It's just good to be done. So my next class started Wednesday. Yeah, I know, no rest for the weary. But the best part of my new class is that NO GROUP PROJECT, I REPEAT NO GROUP PROJECT!!!! I like individual effort. It's a good thing. If you screw up you only have yourself to blame. And no one but you can make you go back to square one. So even though one class ended and another one started, it's like I am on vacation.

Yesterday was interesting. I've been trying to learn my new gig in record time. I've been doing pretty well with that goal. See the thing is I have always felt I can do pretty much anything I want by thinking it through and I've been resourceful enough to make it through the most difficult situations. But the downside is that aspect of my personality can also get me into some "interesting" situations at times. So yesterday I found myself in the situation where I was trying to find yet another workable solution to a seemingly impossible problem. So in pursuit of a solution, I skipped lunch, ran up and down a flight of stairs like 20x, and worked about 12 hours straight. Needless to say, I finished what I wanted and completed some good work, but I was F-R-I-E-D!!! I suppose having a never say die and never give up attitude has its drawbacks.

So I get home, it's raining. It's been raining for days now on the East Coast. We haven't seen the sun in a few days. So I was hungry, tired, and needed to decompress. Rainy day? Comfort, feel good food? Hum... So Sharkey and I went to one of our favorite Japanese establishments and we had some good sushi and I had a nice hot bowl of soup, tempura udon to be specific:

There's just something about a hot bowl of noodles in yummy broth with a little chili powder that just puts things back into perspective!!! Oh and the deep fried shrimp and veggies didn't hurt either!!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Day Off

So I haven't posted since my birthday. I have been for a lack of better words, "burning the candle at both ends." I have been taking a graduate class and it has been just brutal. Actually, let me be more specific, the group I've been working with has been just brutal. Well, to be even more specific, one person in my group is EXTREMELY bad. In my experience, typically on the graduate level you usually will get to work with other working professionals who are for the most part very reasonable. Everyone realizes the class is in addition to your full time job (because they are in the same boat you are in) and everyone appreciates and works towards just getting the class project done. However, from time to time you get stuck with people who are a far cry from professional. So what's been happening is that for every 3 steps we take forward on the project we are working on, we take 5 steps back because of this person. These setbacks have meant pulling extra days to meet with my group after work, which was pretty unnecessary, and redoing things from square 1. And anyone who knows me will tell you I am SO NOT into doing unnecessary rework.

Finally, the other week I had enough of this person, and while everyone in my group was still trying to be accommodating (which in turn was putting us way behind), I finally had to take hard line and bluntly said "No sorry, we aren't making any more changes, we are moving forward." See, the thing is that for the most part graduate level courses are all about breaking into project teams, because that's what happens in the "real world." Man do I miss just doing individual effort!! I keep telling myself I just need to hang in there for 1 more week.

So it seems this is the first weekend I've had where I actually have nothing going on. So it was nice to sleep in and just RELAX!!!!! Sharkey had made some awesome pumpkin pancakes and it was a great way to start off the day:


Of course the gigantic mug of pumpkin coffee didn't hurt either!! Oh and ummmmmmmm bacon....

Saturday, September 29, 2007

38 Years Old. So what have I learned?

Today is the start of my 39th year on this planet. Yep. It is JP's birthday!! So I figured now would be a good time to do a top 10 list of the "important" things I've learned so far:

1. If you start something, you must finish it. From the smallest thing, to the most important thing you undertake, follow through. Complete what you initiate.

2. The pursuit of something is often much more exciting than the obtaining of something.

3. No matter how many advanced educational degrees you have or credentials you possess, nothing can take the place of good old common sense. Because the ultimate truth is what's really in your heart.

4. True happiness and contentment is not found in what others think of you. In fact it really is all about how you perceive or picture yourself.


5. A dog can teach you all you need to know about enjoying life and appreciating every day as it comes.




6. Heroes are important. Noble figures and icons inspire the heart and help you to strive to be more than what you are, to think of others more than yourself, to do what is morally right, and to do more than what you thought you could do.

Superman Crest

7. If you know the rules and thoroughly understand how they work inside and out, you can break ALL of them!

8. Loving someone and having them love you back, is the greatest gift you can exchange between two people. No other thing even comes close.

9. There is no such thing as an impossible situation. There are always possibilities. You sometimes just need to gain some perspective and think about it from a different angle or position.

10. Faith. It really can move mountains.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Closest to the PIN!! WINNER!!

This past Saturday I played in a charity golf outing for the Susan G. Komen foundation to support breast cancer research:

It was a beautiful day and I had a blast. My team finished in 3rd place overall. But I scored a few things. I won the par 3 closest to the flag contest, so I received my first golf trophy:

dsc_1574 copy

And along with the trophy I received this little prize as well:

dsc_1575 copy

I like it!! I actually won this playing golf!?! UNREAL!! Who knew you can win this kind of stuff? OK, so I have to admit I'm hooked. Well part of it is that they gave me one of my most favorite of all things, A WATCH! I don't know what my fixation is with watches, or time in general, but I love them and pens come in a close second. Not sure, but this one is pretty special since I got it doing the sport I'm obsessed with and love. Also, since I can hit a golf ball almost 3 football fields I typically will have a shot at winning the longest drive contest too, but in this outing I slammed one down the fairway, but it rolled off to the rough so it didn't count. Oh well... So now I'm looking forward to the next tournament where I can get more shiny objects!

dsc_1578 copy

Sunday, September 09, 2007

The Second Worst Day of My Life

Having read Soozieq's recent post on the crappy day she had, that got me thinking to what the equivalent day was for me. Well absolutely hands down the WORST day of my life was finding out Sharkey had breast cancer. But that event doesn't fit the bill of the kind of day Soozieq was describing. Her day was a series of one tragedy after another. Fortunately, ( well unfortunately for me)I have a similar tale to tell....

So this day happened oh about 6 years ago. Back then Sharkey and I had lived in PA just over a year. We still had the original Chlo-Dog too (Chloe. Sharkey called her Chlo-Dog). If you don't know, Chlo-Dog was the predecessor to Penny and our current cuddle dog Maggie. This is where our story begins.

See since Chlo-Dog was up in age, she didn't have the ability to hold her pee for more than 3-4 hours. So Sharkey and I took turns going home for lunch to let the dog out. So I'm zooming home at lunch and I get 1/2 way there and before I know it there's a township police man with his lights on in back of me. BAM!! Speeding ticket for $150. That wasn't the worst of it. Coworkers of mine were passing by while I was pulled over, so of course they honked, pointed, and laughed at me as they drove by.

So I go home at the speed limit, and I walk into the house and realize the dog isn't there wagging at me, happy I'm home. So I call the Chlo-dog and she comes sulking up to me with the "I'm sorry I did something really bad look" on her face. So I walk around and find there was a wonderful pile of puke on the carpet. WONDERFUL!! So I clean that up, grab a quick bite,then go back to work.

So I'm back to work and one of my wonderful coworkers decides to send me an e-mail on my minor infraction with the law to break my balls. So of course I try to laugh it off, even though I was pretty annoyed. So being the mature, sensible adult I am, I decide to use my knowledge of Information Technology for evil. I decide to send a LAN message to the person harassing me in e-mail. See the beautiful thing about doing that is the message pops up above all windows on the persons desktop, and they have to acknowledge the message by clicking "OK." You cannot ignore it and just get to it whenever you decide to like e-mail. It's annoying to a point and was perfect for this person. So I send a few messages, telling this person I'll get them, someday, when they least expect it, maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but someday soon! I know, I'm such a menacing presence...

So later in the day I talk to that person to tell them I was just kidding and that I thought everything that happened was pretty funny when I sat back and thought about it. And I asked her, "Hey did you like the LAN messages I sent you?" She replied, "What messages, I didn't receive any LAN messages."



So the next day, I get into work and about 9AM I get a phone call from corporate security. It seems that the user ID I keyed for my LAN message went to the wrong person. So I ended up freaking out a woman in Southern California, who thought someone was out to get her; so much in fact that she had to go home early. That's just great... So I talked with corporate security, fessed up to what I did (what? I couldn't deny it, right?) and then the guy thankfully laughed and told me just to make sure to not do that again. I said "Sure no problem, no more LAN messages, got it..."

So what did we learn here kids? Well, bad things seem to happen in 3's like everyone thinks. If the dog pukes, it's not the end of the world it's just puke (yeah honey it's a ripoff of your strudel line I know..). Township police speed traps are totally avoidable when you know where to look for the speed timing lines. And the #1 lesson is don't send LAN messages with people who have a really common last name (i.e. Smith, Brown, Johnson, etc.)

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Labor Day Ritual #1: Long's Park Art Fair

Sharkey and I have certain "Must Do" events throughout the year. Ever since we've known each other we've always sought out contemporary art fairs. If we are in the Twin Cities at the right time, we will wander around the Minneapolis Uptown Art Fair. And if we are home in Philly around Labor Day we will always attend the Long's Park Art Fair in Lancaster. We love it. It's a lot of fun to see what the different artisans from around the country showcase and sell. Some of the pieces we have in our house have come from the local art fairs we've gone to.

Today was a wonderful day to be outside as well. Gorgeous!! No humidity, sunny, and just blue skies everywhere! The art fair consists of various artists setup in tents around a lake in Lancaster, PA. We arrived at the park and the ducks were even having a great time on the lake.


There were many, many cool things, some of which I took pictures of and can share with you:

6' Metal sculptures:



Yes even dogs are subjects:


Funky Brooms! Not at all like the ones you buy at Target!


Mobile of frogs playing tennis. Pretty funny, but very cool...


Colored Glass. It's so much better than even this picture can show..


So there were also a lot more things showcased. There were very cool photos, very nice paintings, and some fantastic surreal art, which is my favorite, but of course those tents "requested" we not take pictures of their work for obvious copyright reasons. So we had a great day and we are looking forward to the fall art fair in November, which is the Philadelphia Museum Art & Craft Show in the Convention Center.

Monday, August 27, 2007

George Foreman Grill and Water

George My New Best Friend...

So my Mom bought this simple kitchen appliance for Sharkey and me about 2 years ago.


Now I know you know what it is. Unless you've been living under a rock you recognize the George Foreman Lean Mean Grilling Machine. When my Mom gave it to us I thought to myself, "What the heck am I going to do with this thing?" So it survived 2 garage sales and it occupied a small corner of the kitchen to be forgotten. Well that was until this past weekend. See Sharkey has requested we eat a bit better. Less fat, lower calorie, etc. So I found a good recipe for a California Panini and decided it was a good start. It has shrimp, avocado, beefsteak tomato, and a Dijon/mayo dressing. See if you didn't know or if you need some reminding I am the cook of the family. So healthy requires a bit of prep, because it typically involves vegetables, but for a panini, you need a sandwich press. So I was thinking how to simulate a sandwich press. I first thought of using my gas grill and then just flipping the thing, but then I knew that the sides really need to be heated simultaneously, so then I started thinking about what else I could use. Hey!!! I have one of those George Foreman grill thingy's I wonder if that would work? Let's fire that baby up and give it a go! So I give you the California Panini:


The little grill worked pretty well. 4 minutes and you have a hot little tasty sandwich. It worked so well in fact that tonight I made grilled strip steak sandwiches with provolone (cheddar for Sharkey) and onion. So the little, forgotten grill has become JP's favorite new kitchen gadget.

That's Some High Quality H2O...

I drink a lot of water at work. Typically, I'll down like 32-48 oz. in a day. But I've had a bit of a problem, because I put ice in my water and that of course makes the container sweat, so when I tilt it to take a sip, I usually end up with many water spots on my shirt and/or on my pants. And let me tell you, nothing says IT Professional like a man who looks like he pissed his pants...

So to remedy this problem I found this water bottle with a built in straw. It's pretty sweet and look Ma, no more wet pants!!!


Thursday, August 23, 2007

Horse Play? How About Face Play?

So we were in Minnesota lately to be with the family. And while it was a sad time, it was also a great time to be with the fam' and play with the kids. Sharkey's namesake also had a good time playing with Sharkey's face. See for yourself...

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Wired? Oh YEAH!!!

So we are off to Minnesota to attend services for Sharkey's Grandpa who passed away early this morning. I was able to get off of work to help my sweet wife out and I'm glad to do it, and glad my company really supports their employees. I do what I can. And we just finished a 450mi. drive from PA. I'm a bit wired on a Starbucks Grande Mocha no whip, so I figured I'd fire off a quick post then hit the sack. So here I am driving tonight post Starbucks.... Caffine!! It builds a body good!! 2nd 1/2 of the drive tomorrow YEAH!!! JP OUT!!!


Friday, August 10, 2007

Pillow Talk and Singing Dogs

So I have a problem. I'm not sure if I'm the only one who has this disorder, but I have a sleeping issue. I do not talk about it much, but it does exist, I cannot deny it, and I have to face it and it feels darn good to write about it and get it out in the open. See I mangle pillows. I destroy them. Actually I squish them like pancakes. They can be feather pillows or synthetic pillows. They can medium or firm. They can be pretty much any make. It really does not matter. Because as fluffy as they are when I buy them, they all end up flat, like 2" to 3" flat within 2-3 months. I think maybe my head may weigh more than the average person, or maybe it just stays in one position all night. Or perhaps my head has its own gravitational field that crushes all nearby objects. Not sure the reason, but any pillow I have ends up the same way. So I decided to try to get some help from NASA and I'm going to try this baby out, the Tempurpedic Millenium Pillow:


So if viscoelastic polymer cannot do the trick, well, I guess I need to just deal with pancake bedding

OK, on another note, did I ever tell you that I not only have the cutest dog in the world, but she also can sing. True story. Check it out... "Sing Maggie Sing..."

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Vacation Stuff... Better Late Than Never

Haven't posted in a while. I've been in one of those, "I have really nothing to say" moods. So I decided to finally take the photos off my little Canon camera and share with you all. So here are some pictures and a video from our vacation to Emerald Isle, NC.

On Sunday (the 2nd day of our excursion), Sharkey and I met up with my old boss and her husband, who are pretty good friends of mine. She a GRIT (girl raised in the south) and we remain good friends even though I do not work for her anymore and they live in NC. Actually, the funnier part is her husband and I talk almost every day via e-mail. We have become pretty good friends and share a lot of the same things in common (i.e. golf, clothes, jobs, etc.). Anyway, we met them for dinner in this quaint little town called Beaufort. It has little shops and some pretty cool restaurants. We decided it was worth taking a day trip back there and walk around during the week we spent at Emerald Isle.

We came across this cool ship building place:

Shipbuiding place

It was pretty neat. You could sign up to build a ship hull with authentic ship building tools:

Shipbuilding place from outside

Pick a hull, any hull...

Inside shipbuilding place

Here's a nice picture of Sharkey basking in the vacation glory:


We were at this dockside bar overlooking the water. We could see boats coming in and out. The bar was an "interesting" little place. It scared Sharkey's eyes!!! Fortunately we just had drinks there and no food was consumed.

We really enjoyed the beach and we are thinking we will go back again. It may become an annual thing for us. The water was just awesome and we really liked the area, the quiet, and the beaches were very nice too.

And finally I give you Maggie's first time on the beach. Does she like it? Does she hate it? You decide: