Thursday, January 29, 2009

Obama says Steelers 'close to my heart'
Thursday, January 29, 2009
By Jerome Sherman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Barack Obama loves the Chicago Bears, his hometown team. But the Steelers rank No. 2 for the new president, and they're his pick for the Super Bowl.

"I wish the Cardinals the best," Mr. Obama said at an Oval Office meeting this afternoon with Treasury secretary Timothy Geithner, according to a report on "But I am a longtime Steelers fan. Mr. Rooney, the owner, was just an extraordinary supporter during the course of the campaign."

"Other than the Bears, the Steelers are close to my heart," Mr. Obama said.

President Obama is a very astute fellow. He knows that Arizona is not the home of too many winners in recent history.

Photos from FF's Thursday morning commute . . .

Some people really like winter. They think that it's a beautiful season. Wow. Look at that view.

Monday, January 26, 2009

In addition to the many other pleasures that I have experienced during my time here in Florida, as it turns out, I'm about an hour away from Super Bowl XLIII, which is pretty cool. By watching the host city of Tampa's local news, I'm getting a perspective on the Super Bowl (not to mention my hometown Steelers) that I would probably never experience otherwise. Not surprisingly, the Steelers are very popular here in Florida, as they are virtually all over the country. But I am rather enjoying the local news coverage of the team and the event. And although I would miss being in the same city as my beloved Steelers (because the Pirates just don't matter to me anymore), I have recently come to the conclusion that I would be very happy living in the Bradenton/Sarasota area of Florida. The summers may be sweltering, but I think I could learn to live with it. And Florida's not a red state anymore. Hooray for Florida!

Friday, January 23, 2009

I take no pleasure in saying this, but, uh, I told you so . . .

Port Authority hopes for federal bailout for tunnels
Friday, January 23, 2009
By Jon Schmitz, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The executive director of the Port Authority said today that about $290 million has been spent on the North Shore subway extension and warned that the region would have "nothing to show" for that expenditure if the project is shut down.

Steve Bland laid out several options for dealing with a $117.8 million cost overrun on the project, which will extend the Light Rail Transit system from Gateway Center, Downtown, to new stations at PNC Park and Heinz Field.

The best, he said, is to secure funding from the federal economic stimulus bill currently before the U.S. House of Representatives.

If the authority tried to borrow to meet the overrun, it would balloon debt service payments in the capital budget, currently 40 percent, to as much as 55 percent -- meaning that more than half of the authority's capital spending would be on interest costs.

If the project is terminated, "Pittsburgh would find itself in last place in any line for future funding" of major transit projects, he told the authority's board.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Now, why didn't they just do it this way the first time? So much pomp and circumstance. So much money. So many balls.

Compliments of Michelle . . .

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

George Bush is no longer the President of the United States.

Mission Accomplished.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

With the Presidential Inauguration of Barack Obama just three days away, I wonder how many Americans have ordered their commemorative Barack Obama plates. Or how about the commemorative Barack Obama coins offered by the Franklin Mint, the unrivaled authority on commemorative coins? There are all sorts of commemorative goodies being offered by all sorts of vendors, most of which are obviously out to capitalize on the man's unprecedented popularity that appears to rival that of a rock star. And then there are the "official" Inauguration items available from the Presidential Inauguration Committee, including, again, a plate, a coffee mug, a lapel pin, and a picture frame for your invitation to the Inauguration, if you were fortunate enough to receive one. The Barack Obama "industry" may end up being strong enough to revive the American economy. Buy your Barack Obama commemorative items while they're hot. But make sure that you get a certificate of authenticity for each item. Otherwise, they're just worthless souvenirs.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Today my father ordered two tickets to 15 Pirate games this season, as opposed to the four tickets to 81 games that he's been buying since PNC Park opened in 2001.
I tell you, that Boy Mayor of ours sure does have some sense of humor.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I'm feeling much better today. Not quite as good as I had been feeling, but a definite improvement. The power of pharmaceuticals.

And that's even with the lousy weather today in Florida. It rained hard for most of the day, and the temperature was around 60. But I managed to get through the winter day.
Helen: Just read your blog. Did you hear about the 22 year old women's studies student who's auctioning off her virginity to pay for grad school?

Dave: The tough economy has forced many folks to think outside the box. Or rather, inside the box, I guess.

(Hmm. I feel like I've made that joke before on this blog.)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Jim: I just saw a story about a 13-year-old girl who sent 14,528 text messages in one month. There's got to be a Quiet Observer blog in there somewhere.

Dave: I sure hope her parents have her on an unlimited text message plan. Otherwise, she may be looking at community college in five years.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

I came to Florida with only 15 day's worth of one of the medications that I take. So, in order to make the medication last longer, I started taking half of the daily dose. I was feeling good, and I continued to feel good, so everything seemed fine. Then, as my stay here grew longer and my supply of pills started to get lower, last Monday I decided to stop taking the medication in order to conserve the pills. This, of course, is something that you should never do, and something that people with mental illness are notorious for doing when they are feeling so good that they think that they don't need to keep taking their medications. I was doing it to conserve pills, rather than because I didn't think that I needed to take them, but the reasons are not important, because the result was predictable. Starting on Wednesday morning, I had trouble getting out of bed in the morning. The same happened on Thursday morning, and by the time Friday came, I was in bad shape and feeling worse than I have in a long time. I spent a lot of time in bed on Friday and Saturday, and I got out of bed late today trying to work through it and muster enough energy to watch the Steelers/Chargers playoff game at 4:45. I've experienced these symptoms before, although they do seem particularly severe right now. I feel like I have the flu, with intermittent hot spells and cold spells, body aches, and a runny nose. I feel weak, I have no energy, and my head is so foggy that I can't concentrate on much of anything. Even writing this post has been a challenge. I look like a sick person. I've started taking the pills again, and I can't wait for them to start working. I will have to find a way to get more of them down here, since I only have a limited number of them left. But I have to learn the obvious lesson from this experience to never stop taking my medications. The only problem with that is that prior to receiving ECT treatments, I will have to be weaned off of my medications. I don't know what I'm going to do about that.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

I have been in Florida for 21 days. And the time is drawing near for me to return to Pittsburgh. And I'm torn over it. I have had a very enjoyable, relaxing time here in Florida. The weather has been fantastic, the time spent with my parents has been nice, and my time with Sidney has been, well, priceless. But I'm beginning to get a little bored, and my life back in Pittsburgh is getting to the point where it's going to need my attention soon. I wasn't sure how long I would be here when I left, but I brought 28 multivitamins, thinking that four weeks would be the maximum. Now that I've reached the three-week mark, I have to think about when I will return. Until the last couple of days, I have been able to avoid thinking about it. But now that it's crept into my consciousness, I can no longer pretend that I will not have to leave. Honestly, I don't really want to leave Florida. While there are things in Pittsburgh that I miss, my depression has not been a problem while I have been here. I have felt like myself. And it's hard not to be afraid that returning to Pittsburgh may open the door for a return of the depression. Just the thought of the rain, cold, and dark skies back home is enough to turn my mood sour. This situation is starting to trouble me.