The big two-nine

Time keeps marching on… like an alarm clock falling down an endless stairwell… Let’s try that again. Time keeps on slipping, slipping, slipping, into the future. Forget it. I hit the big 2-9 on Thursday. You know what that means – I don’t get to complaing with the cool 30 year-olds yet, but everybody else in their 20s has already grown suspicious of me. That makes for a crappy year (aside from that wedding shindig – I love you honey!)

Anybody who really knows me knows that I don’t go in for the whole birthday celebration. It’s just not my style. Nevertheless (I think I use that word too much) cool stuff is a foot in Hoboken on that very same evening. First and foremost is a free Hoboken Rocks show on Pier A:

Hoboken Rocks on Pier A, Sept. 1

Secondly, fellow Eagles fan Furey has moved the Hoboken contingency of the fanbase over to Dipper’s (616 Washington Street), where they’ll be partying their collective asses off for the final preseason game against the Jets. Due to work obligations (they still pay me), I’m not sure what time I’ll be at either event, but I plan on hitting both. All are welcome to partake.


I haven’t spoken about the Eagles since The Day After, even though I’m still active on the message board and have even visited training camp (I promise, pictures are coming). It will probably remain that way as I hope to pick up with posting over at Philly Sports Net now that the season is rapidly approaching. Still, you’d think I could at least make a comment about the media circus that Owens has made of the offseason…

I kept my mouth shut for most of the time, because a lot of it was blown way out of proportion and a lot of people are going to look like idiots if (as it now appears) he ends up playing the season and putting up great numbers. Yeah, I’m pissed at how he’s handled things and he does some to have the mental capacity of a child, but as long as he plays… I’m not saying I definitely want him back next season, but I’m happy this year.

Nevertheless, this letter from a “young fan” is absolutely hysterical:

Dear TO,

All I want is for the Eagles to win the Super Bowl. Before you came, the Eagles couldn’t even get to the Super Bowl. Then you came, and we were the best Eagles team I had ever seen. We got to the Super Bowl and almost won. You were awesome! I decided that with just a little more practice this year, we could win it all.

But then my dad told me that you might not be on the team anymore. I was really upset and cried. Then I watched the news and saw that you were crying too! This made me cry even more! You said you needed to feed your family. I asked my mom if maybe we could help feed your family so that you would stop crying and help us win the Super Bowl. My mom told me that the Eagles gave you over 9 million dollars last year and that you can afford to buy your own food. I told her that you were crying and maybe you had spent it all already. She told me you were going to get 3 million more dollars this year. I asked her how much a hot dog costs. That’s my favorite food! She told me they were 25 cents unless you buy them from the Eagles in which case they cost 5 dollars. I asked if she thought you could afford to buy enough hot dogs to feed your family and she said “Oh yeah”, but not in a normal way, she said “Oh yeah” in the way she says it when I ask her if I have to go to school or take a bath. I hate baths! I asked her how many hot dogs you could buy and she told me to figure it out myself. I had to get my calculator to do it and the answer was 12 million hot dogs! That’s a lot of hot dogs! But then I was thinking maybe you buy your hot dogs from the Eagles in which case they cost 5 dollars. So then I was thinking maybe you had more than 12 million people in your family. Do you? We have 4. 5 if you count my turtle. His name is Donovan McTurtle.

Then I saw you doing sit-ups in front of a mall. My dad told me that it was your house. So I asked my dad if 12 million people could fit in that house and he said “probably”. That’s when I realized that Eagles were being selfish and that the Eagles need to give you more money so that you can feed your entire family. And maybe they should make their hot dogs cheaper too. I thought this would help other people too because sometimes I eat a hot dog when my dad takes me to see you play.

But then I decided that maybe I could just start saving my hot dogs for you and that way I could help you feed all 12 million people in your family. So the other night when my mom made hot dogs, I sneaked 2 halves up to my room and put them in a drawer. But then I realized it would take me a very very very very very long time to have 12 million hot dogs and so I needed to get other people to help. So then I went around my neighborhood and asked people for hot dogs for you. But I got tired of telling them the whole story so I came up with a slogan that I thought might help everyone understand the situation. Then I tried to put the slogan on a shirt. At first the slogan was “For You T.O.” but I didn’t have enuff room for all of that so I just took the first letter of the “For” and just made the “You” a “U”, which is funny because that’s the way I always used to think it was spelled! So now my shirt says F.U.T.O!

I showed my dad the shirt and he laffed. He said it really got the message across. He said he knew lots of people that would wear that shirt. So that gave me another idea which was to try to sell the shirt itself! Which was a great idea because then I could just give the money to you to buy hot dogs for your humongous starving family that lives in a mall.

All for you TO!

F.U.T.O! Yours Truly, Jeremy

Pour one out for the Okayama House

Since living in Montclair, Lisa and I haven’t taken much advantage of all the great restaurants around here. We’ve hit a few and found some favorites, but there’s so much more to explore. One that really grabbed us was the Okayama Japanese Steak House. It was situated right near the A&P and next to a laundromat, so we decided to try their sushi one night.

Now let me explain something about me and fish. I never ate fish growing up. The mere thought of it frightened me. The only reason I partook in fish sticks was the heavy fried breading, and the copious amounts of ketchup I used to cover the not-quite-fish taste underneath. !@(okayama/tuna.jpg:R150 popimg: “Oh Tuna! You delectable temptress of the sea!”) As I grew older and was forced to mature my taste buds, certain of our seafaring breathren became a part of my diet. Typically anything steak-like (or not fish-like), including swordfish, mahi mahi, and the o-so-delicious tuna. Tuna, you are a wonderful treat – seared, grilled, pan fried, or just plain raw I can eat you so many ways… Sorry, got distracted there for a second.

!@(okayama/makingsushi1.jpg:L150 popimg: “First you cut up the Tuna”) Entering my late twenties I had added a number of new dishes to my palate and even given the dreaded raw seafood from Japan a try. Surprisingly I didn’t find it disgusting, but I also didn’t see the huge appeal of such an expensive treat. Then I realized that, as with any good food, it depends on where you go. The first few places I went were alright, but you need to try it at a great place to realize how good it can actually be. Enter Okayama.

!@(okayama/makingsushi2.jpg:R150 popimg: “Then you put it on the rice”) Trying the place on a whim (it was also new to the area), I was pleasantly surprised to find that the sushi was incredible. I ate a couple other places since then, and found them to be greatly lacking – especially when it came to the all important tuna. Not that they were bad, or anything, but Okayama was just that good. They had an impressive selection of rolls (including a Montclair roll), and presented each one beautifully. The prices weren’t bad either, and I would frequently toss on another tuna roll at the end of the meal just because. Suddenly sushi was becoming a weekly affair (or at least biweekly).

!@(okayama/makingsushi3.jpg:L150 popimg: “Then you roll it up”) One of the main reasons for the deliciousness of their sushi was Allan, their chef. I loved watching the man work. He sure knew how to cut a fine tuna. Unfortunately, last week when we went in, the decor had changed – and so had the name. It was now Durama. The staff was friendly enough, and the manager was very curious about how we felt they were compared to Okayama so we gave it a try. While not quite up to snuff, the first dinner was definitely good. Even better, all sushi is 50% off for the first month.

Last night was a third visit in about two weeks. Since Ivy and Paul joined us, we ordered much more than usual and got to try a variety of rolls including their dragon roll, something with lobster, and a bunch of shrimp tempura. Everything was good, although I think we all agreed that the shrimp tempura was better on its own than in a roll. Currently my favorite dish of theirs is the ISO Fantastic (which includes tuna, whitetail, salmon, roe, and avocado in white seaweed). If anyone else is interested, the 50% off is good until the end of August. I know there’s little time left, but I’m sure we can fit another trip or two in by Wendesday. 😛

Durama’s biggest failing is the lack of specials. Okayama had a much larger selection of rolls, and I’ll certainly miss that. Above all else, I’ll miss Allan and his Pepper Tuna – one of the most delicious meals you could ever imagine.
!@(okayama/allan.jpg:L195 popimg: “Allan hard at work”) !@(okayama/peppertuna.jpg:R195 popimg: “Dear Pepper Tuna, I miss you so. Please come back!”)

Name changes

After checking out the few spam messages that show up in my Gmail account on a somewhat regular basis, I decided it was time to let go of one of my oldest e-mail accounts. It is only used for a few old mailing lists that were never updated and the occasionaly out of touch friend, but appears to be the source for all incoming spam. Goodbye, dear moebius, you’ve served me well.

A few years ago I started paying for an e-mail forwarding service from Pobox. This was right in the middle of all the new pushes for free e-mail services (I still want to spit everytime I think of After bouncing from server to server watching each one get overloaded with new users, I finally decided to pay for an address I wouldn’t have to keep changing. It worked out well, as they have also added a great spam filtering service which has cleaned my accounts up a hundredfold. Even when I initially switched to Gmail, the service was still very useful as I continued to employee one of the aliases as my primary point of contact.

But now I am not just using the Gmail interface and storage, but the address itself for almost all of my e-mail. So I changed the way my forwarding works. The Pobox accounts are used for signing up on mailing lists, registering products, communicating with unknown people, and backwards compatibility with sites containing my old information. This is all forwarded to my Gmail account where I can read it at my leisure and not have to worry about replying with my real address. People who actually know me can e-mail directly to the Gmail account. All of this is then forwarded to a server of mine for archival purposes. This setup filters out a lot of the unwanted cruft, provides me with an easy interface to all e-mail accessible from anywhere, and still archives it for my own personal backsup. But having such an old address around that had been bandied about so carelessly left a few leaks in the pipeline.

After 2 days sans the moebius persona, my spam box remains empty, and even the number of bounces and discards on the Pobox side have gone down dramatically. Le sigh, the end of another era.

Which reminds me, I have registered something like 5 or 6 new domains over the past couple weeks with at least one more to come. Two of them are for side projects I am working on – one for public consumption, the other not so much so (nothing inappropriate, it’s just something for a more select group of individuals). Yet another is for a “wedding blog” – guess I’ll have to tel Lisa about it. will probably never see the light of day, but I registered it anyway just to be safe. The others are up for some serious debate – I will be moving my bog sometime soon, and one of these names will be the new location (the rest might just be “abandoned’). I’m still debating whether or not to talk about them on this site and ask for opinions or make the decision on my own and reveal the new name and design all at once.

Boy, isn’t this all so exciting?!?!

Updates galore

Sorry to keep you all waiting. I’m sure everybody has just been glued to their monitors, refreshing waiting for an update. Unfortunately, the weekend was busy and tiring and filled with updating my own family members (sorry, but my Mom comes before you).

So yes, put your fears to rest, Lisa is fine. I took her to the hospital on Friday night, and X-rays and some goofy tickle tests confirm that nothing was broken or seriously damaged. She’s been somewhat sore and rather miffed at the whole ordeal, but I consider us lucky that that’s about it. As her body recovers, I have been recruited as her personal massage therapist and am doing my best to cure what ails her.

As for the minivan… it’s seen better days. Not recent ones, mind you, as both Lisa and I have scraped up both sides of the rear recently. But the front hood is totally crumbled and will need to be replaced along with the grill. The “H” from the front is currently sitting on our kitchen table, as I am still looking for an appropriate chain to hang it around my neck – I have to represent, afterall.

But you can’t keep a good man (or woman) down, so we still headed out Saturday morning to a picnic for her new job (although she hasn’t started yet). Definitely seems to be a good crowd she’s joining, so I’m excited about that. Afterward she headed out wth her parents and found a wedding dress – YAY! That’s one more item to check off the planning list. Me? I headed over to Sandy’s for another fun filled Slow Foods Social. Great times were had with all, especially catching up with Ruby, making grandiose plans with Linda, and swapping cooking ideas with soon-to-be-linked Martha. And of course, hanging out with the absolutely fabulous host and good friend Sandy, who will kill me if I don’t put up the pictures from the party soon (especially once I mention how many great shots of her daughter Caitie I got).

Now I’m just winding down after a hectic workday that started out with a paring ticket and dodging lots of construction… I think I need a break.

When it rains, it craps

Lisa called me at work today. She was incredibly excited about how everything went at her new job (she’s doing the orientation thing and finding out what classes she’ll be teaching, etc.) and the great bargains she found during her subsequent shopping expedition. What a day! I told her to call our friend Joel and we’d head over to Hoboken for a fun night out. Yeehaa!

A few minutes later I notice a voice mail. While trying to check it, Lisa calls through.

“I guess you didn’t get my message,” she says.

“No,” I say, not bothering to mention that I was in the process of checking.

“I’m okay, but I was just in an accident.” Crap. She went on to detail how traffic had gotten heavy on the Parkway, and the guy behind her failed to notice that all the other cars had stopped but his. CRASH! He rear-ended her minivan and shoved it into the car ahead, which was then shoved into the car even further ahead. Everybody’s fine, but of course Lisa’s vehicle was the only one damaged. The car ahead of her has one of those goofy spare tires on the back, which managed to cave in her hood – I’ll provide pictures later.

On the bright side, you’d barely even notice all the scratches I added the other day!

Right now I’m waiting for Lisa to get off the phone with GEICO (man can that lizard talk your ear off) so we can head over to the hospital and have her checked out. She seems fine, but we’re both worried about her neck – with some chronic shoulder problems, whiplash is the last thing she wants out of this ordeal. More news later…

In Other News

I’ve got about 20 posts running around in my head… well, maybe they’re jogging (haven’t been to the gym in a week afterall). The problem is, they all come at once. So then I have to debate about which one to start with. And then I get worried that I’ll post too many right in a row. And then some will get lost in the shuffle. And then my readers will miss the good ones. And then they’ll start to think that my site isn’t worth reading anymore. And then no one will come visit me anymore. And then I’ll get really depressed and lonely and spiral into a lost weekend of drunkenness. And then I’ll feel really crappy going back to work. And then I’ll get fired because I’m constantly hungover. And then I’ll end up on the street with no Internet access, so how could I possibly get out of my funk at that point?

So you see my dilehma, right? After all is said and done, I never even get around to a second post that day (unless its for some stupid meme). But now I’ve got such a backlog of posts in my head I can barely walk without chewing gum at the same time… nevermind.

In my excitement over all of the work goodness this past weekend I forgot to mention that Lisa also has good news on the professional front. She’s go a new job! I tend to ignore any possible financial problems we face, but with a wedding, house hunting, and dozens upon dozens of babies down the road, it’s time we really started saving. And my salary – while decent for me – just isn’t enough for all of it. Lisa just couldn’t contribute enough with her current massage therapy hours, and couldn’t add anymore without completely draining herself physically. Fortunately, it didn’t take long for her to find a different opportunity.

Although she didn’t get the admissions position she originally applied for, the Helma Institute decided to give her a teaching position instead. This will let her continue dealing with a field she enjoys, but cut down on the hours of touching creepy guys strenuous physical work. I’m looking forward to having her less tired and stressed out (oh, and the money).

Plus, this means we’ll get to go shopping for new clothes for her soon. Not that I’m complaining about her wardrobe, rather Lisa is not too keen on her current closet situation. That doesn’t really matter, though, because our shopping trips always devolve into hours of me picking out and trying on stuff. What can I say, I was raised by 6 older sisters!

Which brings me to my next point – I am in love with Ben Sherman! I’ve never met the man, but boy can he design some killer pants and shirts. I will soon go further into debt thanks to the discounts available over at Bluefly. Not only do they have these ridiculously cool pants for only 53 bucks, but they also have what will henceforth be known as the greatest shirt ever made! I swear, once that shirt comes in, I can throw out all others as it is the only one I plan on wearing from that moment forward! The rest of my wardrobe pales in comparison! I may not even need pants, that shirt is so awesome! And yes, I do need to use this many exclamation points when talking about THE GREATEST SHIRT KNOWN TO MAN! (I think I’ve been readin Dooce too much).

Forward to my shopping cart!

P.S.(I scored a 71 on The greatest ever 80s’ Tunes Test, largely because I don’t remember many lead singers. But I refuse to post their results as I’m sick of OKCupid!’s horrid output code invalidating my site!)

Gosh dern special editions

So Sin City hit shelves today. As you may recall, the movie floored me in theaters, which makes this purchase a no brainer, right? *ERNT* WRONG! (What the heck is ernt? I was trying to make a buzzer sound that was a tad more alarmish, but that just looks stupid)

Wait, where was I? Oh that’s right, I was thinking of ranting about the way studios try to screw us with all of these double releases and “bonus” materials and random third discs that pop up. You see, I know something more is in the works for Sin City. I don’t think there’s been anything official, but Rodriguez and Miller talked about all of the extra footage they have and how much they want to do something with it that you know this single-disc version just ain’t gonna cut it. And the powers that be sit on these announcements regularly, because they know schmucks like me will end up plunking down the money for the way cool version of Hellboy or at least the director’s cut even though I already own the initial special edition release. Why didn’t I just wait for he better versions? Because they didn’t announce them until after he first one hit shelves and my wallet – and I was foolish enough to believe that “TWO DISC SPECIAL EDITION” meant something.

And now they’re getting me with CDs, too. Today I excitedly noticed a new Killers album at Best Buy. But upon closer inspection it turned out to be a re-release “Limited Edition” version with 3 new tracks. But I’m still wearing out my fist copy, why should I be buying another?!?! It’s not like Ben Folds Five’s recent remaster of Whatever and Ever Amen – that’s seven years after the fact and finally got me a good copy of the Japanese version of “Song for the Dumped”! The re-release was downright essential.

But this crappy attitude by the studios left me with a barren edition of The Princess Bride after nearly 3 years of delays only to miss out on the 2-disc edition shipped a few months later. I knew there would be a big special boxset of The Matrix Trilogy (which I still haven’t purchased), so I didn’t bother with the sequels as they came out – but we shouldn’t have to guess at these things.

Please, just tell me beforehand when you’ll be releasing even better super-duper extra-special flavor editions, because I’m just too darn stupid to figure it out myself and my bank account (and shelving space) hates me for it.

P.S.(I didn’t even get into how much it pisses me off when studios release box sets AFTER I buy the individual DVDs!)

They didn’t not withhold disapproval

Can I get a shout out for the crazy guys over at the FDA?!?! Them slick mofos finally got their shiznit together and approved Unigene’s first drug in the US (for those of you not following, I work for Unigene). I won’t go into how long of a process this has been or the frustration of this last leg of waiting because… well, because, quite frankly, I’ve got no clue what I can and can’t say – a quick HOLLA to all those nasty NDAs in the hizzouse!

!@(fdabubbley.jpg popimg: “The Levys pop out the bubbley for our celebration”) Much celebration was enjoyed on Friday, with the champagne flowing effortlessly (out of the bottles and down our throats). It’s quite a feeling to have been apart of this, even if I’m just the IT guy an have only been apart of it for 2 years. Hey, at least I can mooch off someone’s accomplishments around here.

Here’s hoping for insane earnings on the stock over the next few days – I’ve got a wedding to (partially) pay for next year! At leat cover the honeymoon, alright?

I’d also like to take this moment to recommend enjoying the (semi)new look of Unigene’s website. It’s a definite improvement over the filler I had up there for the last year or so, and we won’t even get into the previous look. Amazing what happens when you have real designers do the work instead of a very tired sys admin! With the approval, even more will be going on the site in the coming months. Suddenly it’s very good to be where I am.

P.S.(The reason for the goofy title is the actual fax from the FDA uses wording to the effect of “We have chosen not to withhold approval.” Gee, thanks for th overwhelming confidence there.)