Sunday, September 30, 2007
Saturday, September 29, 2007
Thanks to an original Dirt Dog, Kevin Millar, the Sox are Eastern Division Champions (the Orioles had to beat the Yanks in 10). I'm sure Dan Shaughnessy is elated and relieved. Ever since he claimed the division for the Sox on May, many Sox fans have been certain the Yanks would take it.
We more backed into it than took it outright, but we'll take it anyway we can. Yee Haw.
Friday, September 28, 2007
Pigeons are pooping on Bengals fans.
I've been to Paul Brown stadium about 1,000 times (or at least it seems like 1,000 times). It's a dee-sas-ter.
The fans wear 80's style orange and black pants and tiger paw gloves, the guy running the sound system plays "Welcome to the Jungle" every 37 seconds, the Ben-Gals cheerleaders would scare away an elephant, and the drunk guy next to you keeps screaming "who dey". I totally understand the pigeon's point of view. The Who Dey Guy deserves it.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
My parents and aunt and uncle are visiting from Ohio. We thought they might enjoy meeting some of the local folk, so we called up to Walker's Point and asked if 41 could come out and play. He said yes, so we agreed to meet in Perkin's Cove.
He brought Barbara with him, but she doesn't ride on the boat, she just eats at Barnacle Billy's.
A rather large crowd had gathered to gawk, and as the President left the restaurant, he shook hands (including my aunt and uncle's) and chatted with folks. Regardless of politics, I couldn't help but be impressed by his graciousness and the time he took with each person who wanted to talk to him. My Uncle Don was so thrilled he says he's not going to wash his hand, ever.
The Secret Service Zodiac boat flies the flag of the United States of America, the Texas State flag and the Maine State flag (and those are your tax dollars at work folks).
Starting December 17th, Skybus will fly from the Pease Jet Port directly to Jacksonville and Ft. Myers, FL.
If you want to ride the bus for $10.00, you'd best get those cheap seats now. At 9 am this morning, there are $10.00 flights to Ft. Myers available on December 17, 18 and 19. If you want to return to Boston for $10.00 you can fly on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day--or wait until January 3rd, and I'm guessing those tickets won't last very long.
Monday, September 24, 2007
Starbucks is giving 50 million songs to launch the new iTunes WiFi music store....that's $50 million dollars of free tunes.
My first thought is "yee haw", I know where I'll be next Tuesday morning. Getting me a no fat latte and a free song.
My second thought was "doesn't seem prudent." What's good for me, might not be so good for Starbucks. That's a lot of songs and a lot of money. Why would they give away so many songs? It only make sense if revenues are down and they need to bring in additional customers in a big way.
Third thought, it might work too well. I'm going to pay them $3 for a latte and they'll give me .99 worth of free stuff. Considering the physical overhead, the cost of goods sold and the cost of the employee makin' my latte (health care, stock options and the hourly rate), there's not a lot of profit left in that cup of joe.
Friday, September 21, 2007
We're off to what Downeast Magazine calls "Maine's most authentic country fair", and a weekend in Cushing with Retired Guy's brother and sister-in-law. We'll have a weekend of organic, locally grown food, sustainable living and a picture fest from The Trip To Italy....can't wait.
Have a great weekend y'all. We'll be in the land of no TV, no internet access and spotty cell phone reception.
Go Sox. Please.
Two summers ago, on a foggy cool August afternoon, I had a bowl of heaven. A fish chowder so delicious that I wanted to grab the pot from the stove and hide it in a secret place so that every bit of it would be mine (I didn't, but it was so very tempting).
I asked for the recipe. Bad idea. Turns out, it's a secret family recipe and no one, but no one outside the family gets the goods (imagine a Portuguese Colonel Sanders and you'll get the drift).
So for almost two years, I've been googling fish chowder recipes, checking every cookbook that I own or can get my hands on, ordering fish chowder at any restaurant serving it, and experimenting with recipes. Nothing is ever as good. I started to think that it must have been a flawed memory.... my hunger and the cold tricked me into thinking the stuff was better than it was. It's just a bunch of potatoes and haddock in some milk, right?
Finally last week, I found a recipe over at Diana's Kitchen. (Thank you Diana!)
I added extra thyme, more pepper a bit more bay leaf, wine instead of water and poof. Heaven in a bowl.
Hearty Fish Chowder
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 2 medium carrots, cut in small dice
- 1 rib celery, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 pound frozen haddock fillets
- 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 bay leaf (I added an extra half leaf)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon dried leaf thyme crumbled (I used quite a bit more)
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper (way, way more pepper)
- 1 cup dry white wine or water
- 2 cups milk
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley or 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter; add onions, carrots and celery, stirring and cooking until onion is tender. Add fish, potatoes, bay leaf, salt, thyme, pepper, and wine or water. Cover and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until fish is cooked. Break fish into chunks. Add milk and remaining 1 tablespoon butter; heat through. Discard bay leaf, sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Fish chowder recipe serves 4.
Barack Obama will be holding a Countdown to Change event in Portland on Tuesday September 25th. Doors open at 4 and the program starts at 5.
You can buy tickets online ($23.00)
The Portland Expo
289 Park Avenue
Portland, ME 04102
Thursday, September 20, 2007
We met our Cushing neighbor this weekend (that's him up there). He's a rarity in Maine these days-- a real, live lobsterman who can afford waterfront property--even if they own the property out right, taxes for waterfront property often are more than a lobsterman can afford. Or some CFA is willing to pay such a dear price for the land, a practical Mainer will sell and move to a house off-water. Lobstermen who don't live on the water often fish from floats moored in a harbor (like that one at right).
Our neighbor lives on the water because his family has owned the property for over 250 years and he drives a truck most of the winter to supplement his fishing income. The house has no furnace and no basement. The washing machine is in the garage and the dryer is a clothesline.
As soon as they realized we were mainers, and we weren't "mass-people", they offered us lobsters Rich had brought home that day. Then they told us to borrow their kayaks any time--don't even ask. Then Richard said he'd make sure that our drive was plowed so we could get to the house in winter. If he was on the road, his wife would be able to plow us. He also volunteered to help take down any trees on our property that are "wind damaged."*
We quickly found out that they don't like the neighbors on our other side anymore than I'm guessing we will.....it's never good to jump to conclusions with neighbors or people in general, but the two interactions we've had with them make me a tad wary. The first time we met them, they handed us a formal contract for the maintenance of our lane and said that we needed to "get this matter taken care of immediately." okaaaayyy. We fully plan to contribute to the upkeep of the lane, but I'm far more comfortable working out a handshake deal--not signing a legal document that could land us in court. My word is bond. I'd hope that they are the same way.
The second time, they brought their three Irish wolfhounds over and let them run amok in our yard and garden. If you've never seen one of these puppies in person, click the link to see just how ginormous these guys are. Anyway, one tried to sit in Retired Guy's lap while the other two tormented mac the dog. One would have been a bit much, but three was out of control. Then they mentioned that they'd turned in the lobsterman* for taking down trees on his land in such a way that we took it as a warning that we should not improve the view on our land. As soon as they left, we took down about 15 trees--with a hand saw.
I also have a sneaking suspicion that part of my wariness is because they're from away and they act like they are from away. They moved to Maine because they love Maine, but now that they're here, they want to start changing things.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Must. Not. Blog. About.The.Sox. Must. Not. Think.About.The. Sox.
Anyway, just received this little tidbit in an email from someone I trust (and who is a Republican, so I assume he's got no vested interest in a misquote):
...Even Reagan knew better. This is a direct quote from the recently published Reagan Diaries. The
entry is dated May 17, 1986.
'A moment I've been dreading. George brought his ne'er-do-well son around
this morning and asked me to find the kid a job. Not the political one who
lives in Florida. The one who hangs around here all the time looking
shiftless. This so-called kid is already almost 40 and has never had a real
job. Maybe I'll call Kinsley over at The New Republic and see if they'll
hire him as a contributing editor or something. That looks like easy work.'
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Because of An Inconvenient Truth, I'm now driving an ugly little box of a car.
Ok, it's not totally Al's fault. Part of it might have to do with the price (23k); the gas mileage (60 around town--verified by my two tree hugging friends who already own them) and the fact that we had to get a new car (lease is up on the Pathfinder), but a lot of it has to do with my husband's conversion to greenie, tree-hugging environmentalist after he saw the movie.
I grudgingly admit to feeling good about conserving energy (we've changed every light bulb in the house to CFL's), and I love the price tag, but for a girl who loves cars, the aesthetics of this one leave me with a face of distaste.
Monday, September 17, 2007
Yesterday we had lunch at our favorite spot in all of Maine. Seafood chowder and a crab melt for me; lobster bisque and a lobster BLT for our New Yawk friends.
Rather than tell you where it is, I thought I'd see if anyone recognizes the spot from the photo.
Friday, September 14, 2007
We've got friends coming to visit for the weekend, but they aren't arriving until later this evening. We wanted to eat suppah in the pub, so I called the York Harbor Inn to make sure they'd be serving dinner at 10-10:30.
The really nice lady on the other end of the phone informed me that they had a "late night" menu so they'd be serving late.
Now I'm excited. My late is midnight......then she says "ayeuh, that late night menu goes until 10 pm." Oh.
My friends (they live in Manhattan) consider 10 pm the normal dinner hour. I've got some explaining to do.
Thursday, September 13, 2007
It might be too early to really tell, but it appears that the ban on herring trawling is having a positive impact:
Fishermen say they are seeing more herring returning to the Gulf of Maine, where a ban on trawlers that drag nets through the water has been in effect through the summer.
"There has been lots of sea life, and it kind of amazes me," Daniel Fill, captain of a Rockland-based fishing boat, told the Portland Press Herald. "I have seen fish where I haven't seen them for years. They're in nice, big bunches for miles."
Other purse seine herring fishermen, whale-watching companies and tuna fishermen are reporting similar observations. They also say they see more sea birds, dolphins, tuna and seals, which feed on herring.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
(Warning: I tried to act like this didn't make me happy and I tried not to gloat, but I can't, so I stopped trying.)
So, the league has officially determined that the Patriots cheated against the Jets on Sunday. All that's left according to the Boston Globe and the NY Post is for the NFL to determine the penalty.
It's not the first time that the Pats have been caught taping another team's signals, and it's not the only form of cheating--if you're a Colts fan any doubt you had about Willie McGinist's "injury" in the playoff game in 2003 were put to rest after he was able to make a celebratory sprint to mid-field when the Pats won the game.
Add these instances to the rumors that Belichick fudges injury reports and the whispering that he has knowingly allowed stadium personnel to mess with the other teams' radio transmissions, well ya gotta ask "Is one of the greatest coaches ever or is his just a conniving, sneaky, criminal mastermind?"
As a Browns fan, it might help answer that question that's haunted the city of Cleveland for years "Why was he such an unbelievable screw-up in Cleveland and a genius in New England?" The answer we now know is that he just hadn't figured out how to cheat.
As a sports fan, it's disappointing that a franchise who puts so much emphasis on players' character and maturity has a coaching staff who clearly values winning more than character. As a devoted Belichick detractor, it's just desserts for the guy who took a Head Coach job with the Jets and then spit in their eye two minutes later, who fired Bernie Kosar and treated the Cleveland media like it was a bunch of kids off the short bus, and couldn't win even half the time until he got to New England.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
I'm one of those folks who thinks that this day should always be remembered, but I never have words that are adequate.
My September 11 story is pretty unremarkable. I got a phone call at 8:55 from my friend in Manhattan. After I so very patronizingly told her that it could not possibly have been a commercial jet that hit the building, I tried to log onto the MSNBC site. It was unresponsive. While I waited, another friend burst into my office and announced that the second plane had hit the other tower. We left the office and headed to my house (no TV's in the office and the internet was just useless).
The two of us were the only two people that I know of in our workplace (the Cincinnati office) who left the building, went home and watched the news coverage. Most of my colleagues just continued to work as if nothing had happened (and quite frankly, it's always puzzled me--who could remain incurious? who could focus on a day like this?). Like so many others, I waited for news of my friends who worked in the World Trade Center (miraculously, not a single one out of the seven people that I know were injured or killed), and news of our two colleagues, who were staying in the Marriott, finalizing a sale to meet DOJ requirements. They were both fine, but we didn't know that at the time.
The one image that I can never forget is my friend, kneeling under a tree in my front yard, sobbing--he cried (he told me later) for those lost, for those who lost someone, for our country, and for his two small children who would grow up in a world that would never be the same. It was a brilliantly beautiful day, marred only by a grown man so overcome with grief that he was unable to walk from my front door to his car in the driveway.
The New York Post has a memorial site, as does the New York Times.
My sister in law and I take cole slaw pretty seriously. We're aficionados--we like it all-american, jazzed up or made with stuff other than cabbage--like broccoli. We like it on sandwiches or as a side to a hamburg. My brother is passionate about bratwurst, and most especially during football season. We often serve potato salad or macaroni salad at a tailgate, but last week, we decided that there has to be a slaw that's perfect with brats. We tried Napa Cabbage slaw (she in Ohio) and the broccoli slaw (me in Maine). We adjusted a recipe that we found in an old church cookbook. None were right. Last night, we made a recipe that Betsy's mom suggested and we think it's just right to go with a mess of brats at tailgate.
1 head of cabbage, shredded or chopped briefly in food processor
2 medium onions, cut in rings
1 green pepper; chopped
1 jar pimento peppers; chopped and drained
1 cup sugar
1 cup white vinegar
¾ cup canola oil
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoons celery seeds (up to 2)
Combine cabbage, green pepper, onion and pimento in large bowl. Mix sugar and celery seed into this mixture.
Combine vinegar, oil and salt in pan and bring to a boil. Pour immediately over cabbage. Refrigerate, stirring several times.
Make at least 8 hours before serving.
Monday, September 10, 2007
What do you expect when a Bon Jovi fan coaches your team?
The NFL is looking into claims a New England Patriots employee was videotaping signals by Jets coaches on New York's sideline during the season opener.It ain't the first time. Hire low class, you get low class......
(and yes, I know that I might rot in hell for not worshiping at the alter of Belichick, but I'm from Cleveland. 'Nuff said).
Posted by mainelife at 8:53 PM
What Are They Gonna Do to the Band?
The Ohio State University has been named FIRE's (Foundation for Individual Rights in Education) Speech Code of the Month for this Diversity Statement issued by the University Housing Office. Included in the statement are The Goals:
• Increase sensitivity to differences through exposure, dialogue, and personal reflectionand The Expectations:
• Address thoughtlessness that may limit our efforts
• Maintain a talented and qualified staff with a commitment and conviction toward diversity.
As a member of The Ohio State University residence hall community, the following are guidelines that we embrace to contribute to your success, as well as the positive experience for all students living in your hall.
Respect the variety of differences in the residence hall community through your actions, words, As a student in our community, you are asked to be respectful of these differences:
• Do not joke about differences related to race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, ability, socioeconomic background, etc.
• Do not use obscene words or gestures. Oftentimes these are unwelcome and offensive to students in your community.
• Listen to other students living in your floor community. If a person indicates that a behavior or action is offensive, you should stop the behavior immediately.
• Actively challenge the stereotypes you have of others. Use your time to consider the new experiences you are having at The Ohio State University, instead of relying upon the past evaluations you have had of others.
• When in doubt about the impact of your words or actions, simply ask.
Here's where I'm troubled: Have you ever been on a college campus? Most college students can't utter a sentence without a swear word, let alone last a semester (or in this case a Quarter) without profanity. Now swearing is a violation of housing policy.
Secondly, if jokes about ability are "threatening", then one cannot discuss Michigan football on campus. We certainly can't tell the joke Q: Why doesn't Ohio slide into the Ohio River? A: because Michigan SUCKS! Due to this statement every single Ohio State student will need to buy new attire to wear to The Game--because F&*k Michigan certainly seems to an expression covered by this statement, as does Muck Fichigan, Screw Blue, and Ann Arbor is a whore. And those shirts are in abundance at every OSU Michigan game.
Buckeyes can't flip off the Michigan Band anymore and I can't wait to see what the university does to those students who throw full beers and half eaten hot dogs at the Michigan bus.
In all seriousness, it's certain that an esteemed university such as The Ohio State University has any ill intentions here, but the statement is vague, appears to be unenforceable (“Words, actions, and behaviors that inflict or threaten infliction of bodily or emotional harm, whether done intentionally or with reckless disregard, are not permitted.”--how is an RA going to enforce that? What does not permitted mean?), and has the potential to turn every normal roommate disagreement into a "he said/she said and it did me emotional harm" nightmare. Lastly it limits a student's free speech, it may unnecessarily impede valuable, honest intellectual dialog, and it assumes that students aren't adult enough to manage tricky situations on their own.
Given my family's beliefs and my step son's fervor, should the rapture occur in my lifetime, it's certain that I'm going to get one of these....
The really cool thing about this is the way that it works --it's just like that switch on Lost. It's a dead man switch. If someone doesn't reset the bugger, it sends the emails. I'd contend that a sending the left-behind letter will have a way bigger impact than the electromagnetic burst in the South Pacific.
Sunday, September 9, 2007
The first installment of Cathleen Schine's serial fiction The Dead and The Naked appears in today's New York Times magazine. It's setting is an artist's colony on an island off the coast of Maine.
You can read it online here, or listen to the author read the first chapter (found at the same link). If the first chapter is any indication, this is going to be a dandy.
Friday, September 7, 2007
I'd be fibbin' if I said I was anything other than delighted to receive a package from Boone, NC in this morning's mail. In it was attire for both Retired Guy and me to wear on November 17th, a lovely sign to hold up at that game (For Sale--Recently Destroyed Big House) and some mardi gras beads to accessorize the ensemble.
But the very, very best part of the entire package are copies of the The Watauga, filled with photos taken by my good blog buddy, Marie (and sender of said package). Marie, words will never be able to adequately express my sincere thanks for the gifts. The best I can do is to promise to wear that shirt in the Not-So-Big-House on November 17th! It will be a pleasure. Muchas Gracias, Marie.
Thursday, September 6, 2007
In light of last week's special teams debacle in the Big House, Coach Lloyd Carr has announced a new field goal unit will handle the kicking duties this weekend against Oregon. They are pictured above: Curley, a freshman walk on; Larry, a senior offensive line specialist (who guarantees that he can block someone 30 pounds lighter--a feat his predecessor could not accomplish); and Moe, the star of his junior high soccer team.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
On Friday afternoon we headed to Port Clyde for fish chowder at The Dip Net. Nothing's as good as a chowder and draft beer on a cool afternoon in the fog.
After lunch we browsed in a couple of shops and bought a wonderful step-back Windsor Rocking Chair, four English Bible Chairs and an English scrubbed pine dresser. It took more than one trip in the car to get it all back to the cottage, so I sat in a chair in front of the shop and chatted up the owner for a while while Retired Guy took the first load home.
I heard about the cruiser that she and her husband bought in Manhattan and sailed home and the less than hospitable treatment they received in York on that trip. I heard about her duties as a selectman and eventually I got up enough courage to ask her if she'd met the Chief Justice yet.
Yes she allowed that she had.
I said "They say he's a nice guy."
She said, "Aye-uh. That's what they say." And her tone indicated she thought a bit different.
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
From The Detroit Free Press news site:
• By the time kicker Julian Rauch got back to Appalachian State's campus in Boone, N.C., after giving the Wolverines the boot, he had more than 20 new friend requests on his MySpace page -- from Ohio State fans.
Seriously, this ASU upset over Michigan is really a mixed bag for Ohio State fans, Penn State fans and anyone who wants the Big 10 to be respected as a football conference. I'm tickled pink for my friends in Boone, but mortified that Michigan could lose at home in a game that was supposed to be a tune up. It's time for Carr to go. He won't be fired, but if he cares about Michigan football, he'll resign and turn the House keys over to someone who can coach.
UPDATE: This is really fun:
Derek Jeter received lots of ribbing from his teammates after his favorite university, Michigan, which he attended for a semester, was upset by Appalachian State Saturday.
"We were trying to hold off telling him until after the game, but the people in here are ruthless," Torre said. "That's why I had to take him out of the game. He was depressed."
Jeter responded with something he has said hundreds of times: "That's why you have to play the games."
Sunday, September 2, 2007
Congrats to the Mountaineers! they know the joy that only comes from beating Michigan!
0h, 0h,0h how sweet it is
The NYTimes called this the biggest upset in College Football history and CBS seems to agree.
Congrats to my ASU Blog Buddies on a wonderful win.
Marie has covered the story as only she can.....