Thursday, April 30, 2009

I suppose the return of the Pittsburgh Marathon on Sunday after a five-year absence is a good thing for the City. However, it spells certain doom for my sleep on Saturday night. You see, I have lived in the same block of a street on the Marathon route for more than eight years. Which means that I know from previous experience that at about three o'clock in the morning on the night before the race, several police cars and tow trucks will arrive on my block to issue parking tickets and tow cars that have failed to observe the No Parking signs that will be hung along the street between now and then. The police cars will have their lights going, and the tow trucks will make an immense amount of noise when they are towing multiple cars from the block. This will go on for a little while, and then finally once all of the cars on my block have been towed, the police and tow trucks will move up the street to the next block. But for the period that they are on my block, I have historically not been able to sleep because of all of the commotion just outside my window. I have rather enjoyed the reprieve during the last five years of the Marathon's absence, but with the race's return this weekend also comes what I describe as "my worst night of sleep of the year."

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Excited by the team's good start to the season, Pirate players like Andy LaRoche have been doing "the wave" when they are at bat.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I'm definitely getting soft as I get older. As many of my readers know, I have a strong aversion to winter, sometimes leading to bouts of Seasonal Affective Disorder, just another disorder to add to my growing collection of them. Anyway, so not only do I dislike winter, but it also makes me depressed. I got through last winter largely by spending the worst seven weeks of it in Florida with my parents and Sidney. I essentially missed last winter. Now, in only the second day of temperatures around 86 degrees, I couldn't hold out any longer, and I put the window air conditioner in on the second floor of my condo. It was starting to get a little stuffy up there, and there was no breeze coming in through the open window. Maybe April 25 is a little early to be using the air conditioners. But it's bloody hot outside. And now I'm sitting in cool, air-conditioned comfort.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

You see, I know that my sister has more flattering photos of Baby Evelyn, because I got some of the other photos from my mother. Why my sister chose to send yesterday's photo (in addition to another that was almost as unflattering) around to her friends (and older brother) to announce the birth of Evelyn remains a mystery to me. She's a cute baby. At least as much as any baby is.

Monday, April 20, 2009

This is my niece Evelyn. I thought all babies were supposed to be cute.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Still waiting for the geckos to come out.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Adventures in Florida . . .

Sidney always believed (whether rightly or wrongly) that there were geckos hiding behind the big black electrical outlet.

Monday, April 13, 2009

In an effort to promote lagging ticket sales for the bevy of action films starring Nicholas Cage, some theaters are now giving away life size wax replicas of the former "Leaving Las Vegas" Academy Award winner. Although not as easy to carry home as a bobblehead doll, the wax replicas are still rather popular with some moviegoers.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

My parents and Sidney arrived safely and without incident in Pittsburgh yesterday morning. My parents seem well, although they have made their displeasure known about the temperatures here being significantly lower than what they had become accustomed to in Florida. Sidney, being the consummate traveller, arrived back at their house and didn't miss a beat, picking up right where he left off. He loves their backyard, and he was clearly happy to be back patrolling it again. He looks great. He was happy to see me, and we got in some quality playing time yesterday. My "youth" probably makes me a little more satisfying to play with than either of my parents (read: my mother). But he is an outstanding little dog, and I was reminded yet again why I have such great affection for him. My mother brought back with her some photos of him engaged in his customary shenanigans in Florida, and I will post some of them in the near future.

And . . . I became an uncle yesterday. Big day.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Right now, my parents and Sidney are on the road making their way back to Pittsburgh from Florida. I know that they won't be thrilled with the cooler weather here, but I am looking forward to seeing them. Especially Sidney. Apparently, he was barking a bit much last night at a motel somewhere in South Carolina while my parents were next door at a Cracker Barrel having dinner. The front desk received some complaints, and they called my parents to let them know. Poor Sidney. He just doesn't know that after six months of hunting geckos in my parents' yard in Florida (and sometimes in the house, too), he is headed back to Pittsburgh where he will have to find something else to hunt in the backyard here. I'm sure he'll be great once he gets home tomorrow. He's still adjusting to be a traveling dog two times a year. I am very excited to see the little guy.

I have recently learned that Sidney had what was probably his first encounter with an elevator last night at the motel, after which he was not so interested in hopping on board this morning. I guess he doesn't like elevators.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

I'm a liberal democrat, it's true. But I am not opposed to the death penalty.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Stan was in such a hurry to get to the store to buy a carton of his favorite cigarettes before the tax hike took effect that he forgot to put on his man-bra.