Tuesday, December 31, 2013

DAVE: Ha. One of the problems of owning a $30 Timex is that it costs $9 to get the battery replaced at Touch of Gold in Oakland. I tried to take the back off, but I couldn’t do it.

JIM: To follow up, I got a new Timex Ironman Triathlon watch for Christmas. I needed it. It probably cost about $50-$60, so that makes it by far the most expensive watch I've ever owned. It has 10 different buttons on it!

DAVE: And we had been talking about watches. Nice. Ten different buttons.

JIM: I'll probably never learn how to use them all.

DAVE: That’s a lot of buttons. My watches only have one button. I did figure out how to open the back of the Timex, so I can replace the $6 battery by myself, rather than paying $9 to have someone else do it. It really wasn’t that hard.

JIM: Yeah, it's pretty easy. But if your watch is waterproof, be aware that once you open the back to replace the battery, it's not waterproof any more.

DAVE: There used to be a little rubber gasket on waterproof watches that was impossible to get back in once it came out.

Monday, December 30, 2013

DAVE: What kind of watch do you wear? How many watches do you have?

JIM: I have two watches. One is a Timex Ironman sports watch which I've probably had for 20 years or more. The other is a Timex that is a little more dressy, but I still didn't pay more than probably $20 for it many years ago. I've been through multiple bands and batteries for both of them. In fact, my "dressy" watch needs a new battery right now.

I always wear a watch everywhere, but the funny thing is I have never had the urge to buy an expensive watch.

DAVE: The Citizen Eco Drive that I bought 13 years ago is dying. I recently bought a basic Timex for $30 to take over for the Citizen, which was a really nice watch. I bought a new Citizen yesterday [Thursday] online. So, I guess I will have two watches as well.

JIM: I think most people nowadays find the idea of wearing a watch kind of quaint, for lack of a better word. But I am so used to it that I'm uncomfortable when I don't have a watch on.

DAVE: I think young people wear watches that are big and fancy. Otherwise, they just look at their ubiquitous smart phones for the time. Old-timers like you and me still wear a watch to tell the time. I like wearing a watch. I feel naked without one. And Citizen Eco Drives are the shit. They never need a new battery. But based on my personal experience, they may only last for 13 years before you need to get the power cell inside of them replaced, and that means sending the watch to Citizen. That’s why I decided to just get a new one. It was on sale. 

JIM: That seems to be a pretty astute observation.

Kathy's nephew who just graduated from college about a year or so ago told me over Christmas that he wears a Citizen Eco Drive watch. I was surprised by that.

JIM: Have I ever told you about my friend's wife who was dying of cancer? I think I must have mentioned it over the years. They have three young kids.

I got a text around midnight on Christmas that she passed away that day. That really sucks. Those poor kids have been through hell and then it happens on Christmas. So now every time someone asks them what they got for Christmas this year, they get to say, "I got to watch my mom die."

I forget sometimes how truly blessed and lucky my family and I are. We have a pretty good life. I suck that I need to be reminded of that sometimes.

Monday, December 16, 2013

I think that the Victoria's Secret models, past and present, may be the most beautiful women in the world. I can't think of anyone who would argue with that.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Mayor College 
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 11 December 2013.

Bill Peduto was at Harvard last week for a gathering of newly elected mayors from around the country. They were there to study things like municipal finance, crisis management, public safety, etc. I wonder where Lukey went to school.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Courteney Cox Arquette, although attractive, has not aged as well as her gal pal Jennifer Aniston. But Jennifer Aniston makes pretty bad, straight-to-video movies. Courteney Cox Arquette stars in the TBS television show "Cougar Town." Also a bad career choice. Maybe it's time for "Friends: The Movie."

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Oops! My bad.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Deer Hunter
Written by Rob Rogers on Monday, 02 December 2013.

Pennsylvania deer hunting season opens today [yesterday]. I have one question. If the NRA thinks arming kids and teachers is a good idea, how do they feel about arming wildlife?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving passed . . .

DAVE: What are you doing for Thanksgiving?

JIM: Having early dinner at my parents' house and then driving back to have dessert at Kathy's brother's house. You?

DAVE: I may forego my traditional leftover pizza Thanksgiving dinner in favor of going to one of the few restaurants opened in Pittsburgh. I need to make reservations.

JIM: I remember going drinking during a blizzard on Thanksgiving night one time years ago at a Mexican place that was open in Station Square. I don't know what possessed us to need to find a place to go drinking at in the middle of a blizzard on Thanksgiving.

DAVE: It's called youthful enthusiasm.

JIM: I wouldn't know anything about that.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Boy Lincoln 
Written by Rob Rogers on Tuesday, 19 November 2013.

Luke Ravenstahl is trying to put a positive spin on his mayoral history. Meanwhile, the rest of us will be marking the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Is there really a difference between regular bacon and the highly touted "applewood smoked" bacon now served at seemingly every restaurant?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Mayor Skipper 
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 13 November 2013.

The mayoral election, which was pretty much decided in the primary, is now official. Bill Peduto will now be the grownup replacing Boy Mayor. Here's to hoping Peduto has a more mature tenure.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Vote Corbett 
Written by Rob Rogers on Monday, 11 November 2013.

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett has officially launched his campaign for re-election. Like many other republican governors, he's also trying his hardest to disenfranchise certain kinds of voters by passing voter ID laws.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Mayoral Costume 
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 30 October 2013.

Luke Ravenstahl is trying hard to bolster his mayoral legacy before he leaves office. But tweeting about city business while having lunch in a country club probably isn't the best way to do it.

Monday, October 21, 2013

I went to high school in 11th and 12 grade with this shady looking character. For those two years, he was one of my best friends, and by far, my best drinking buddy. He doesn't look like someone with whom I would have been friends in high school. He was a rather weird guy, in retrospect.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Boy Republican
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 09 October 2013.

Boy Mayor has been very quiet for the past few months, like a prisoner trying not to make waves just before his release. Still, he is probably working harder than anybody in the GOP.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

If you want to win games, you have to get hits and score runs. The Pirates did not do that. That having been said, it was a good season. And I will say it again, the Curse of Sid Bream was finally broken.

Monday, October 7, 2013

One more game. Just one more. Can the Pirates do it?

Friday, October 4, 2013

So sad and lonely being a Pirates fan at last night's game.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

What is the deal with sweatpants that are also cargo pants? I feel like I've been seeing a lot of fellows wearing these atrocities lately.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


They're ready for the Cardinals.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Let's Go Bucs!
After spending the summer in Pittsburgh, my parents and Sidney left for their Florida home on Saturday and arrived there yesterday. Today, Sidney caught his first gecko of the season. The little gecko hunter is back in action.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Ted Cruz
Written by Rob Rogers on Friday, 27 September 2013.

Ted Cruz decided to read "Green Eggs and Ham" during his fake filibuster to defund Obamacare in the Senate. The problem is, the moral of that Dr. Seuss classic (don't say you hate something before trying it first) must have been lost on Cruz. He keeps saying that Obama is shoving his health care bill down the American people's throats. No, Ted ... it's the law. Congress passed it. Give it a chance.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Mayor Elect
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 18 September 2013.

Bill Peduto is walking like a mayor and talking like a mayor. That's more than I can say for the current mayor.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Very timely . . .

Gun Flood
Written by Rob Rogers on Tuesday, 17 September 2013.

Thanks in part to the NRA, two Colorado state senators who voted for mild gun control lost their jobs in a recall election.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Pirates are going to finish the season with a winning record for the first time since 1992. The Curse of Sid Bream has been broken.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

DAVE: The Pirates have clinched a non-losing record for the first time since 1992. One more win, and it's the first winning season.

JIM: One more to go. Don't get cocky.

DAVE: Don't you understand the significance? The long suffering Curse of Sid Bream will have been broken.

Sid Bream.

JIM: I'm not sure that's true yet.

DAVE: Yes, that's the curse. Twenty losing seasons, the major sports record. It can't be to make the playoffs or win the World Series. It's to have a winning season.

Friday, August 30, 2013

I don't know what the United States should do about Syria. I honestly just don't know.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

I think every woman needs a really good friend, male or female, whom they can trust to tell them whether they can get away with wearing those black, stretchy yoga pants. And they have to be able to hear the truth without getting mad at their friends.

Monday, August 26, 2013

JIM: If you ever go to a game in Philadelphia (which I know you won't, but you never know), skip the cheesesteak and go to Federal Donuts. Oh my god. You will never eat so good at the ballpark.

DAVE: The only places that I've ever had a cheesesteak in Philadelphia are Pat's, Jim's, and some obscure place on the Main Line. The ones at Citizens look good on TV, though. I'm not a huge fan of donuts. They're so fattening.

JIM: Dude, Federal Donuts is chicken. And donuts. And you will never have anything better.

DAVE: Does the chicken have bones?

JIM: Yes. But it is so good you won't care.

DAVE: I don't like chicken with bones. What makes it so good?

JIM: Yes, I figured. It cannot be explained. You just have to experience it.

My wife hates chicken on the bone too. But she tried it at the ballpark on Wednesday night. And because she is my wife, if I say I like something, she is contractually obligated to disagree. But after a few bites, all she could say is that we must visit the actual restaurant now. She is converted.

I have to admit, I could never understand people's obsession with it either. People I know who have eaten there talk about it like they've been indoctrinated into some kind of cult or something. But now I understand.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Sentencing Reform
Written by Rob Rogers on Thursday, 15 August 2013.

Attorney General Eric Holder is pushing for fairer sentencing guidelines for non-violent drug offenders. It's about time. The "War On Drugs" has been a massive waste of money and human life that unfairly targets poor minorities.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Burgh Bard
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 14 August 2013.

With all of the drama Pittsburgh has witnessed recently, I wouldn't be surprised if we got a visit from Shakespeare himself.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

I just gave all of my mock turtlenecks to Goodwill. I'm going in a different direction.

Friday, August 9, 2013

DAVE: The Pirates could win their division.

FOCKER: You will make me very angry if you jump on the bandwagon now.

DAVE: Too soon?

Friday, August 2, 2013

I don't think there should be tip jars at take-out restaurants.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

I somewhat shamefully admit that I do watch the last few episodes of "The Bachelor" and "The Bachelorette" almost every season. I watch them with my mother. We don't watch the early and middle episodes, but rather join the series in progress when it is down to about four finalists. So, we've been watching this season's version of "The Bachelorette" in recent weeks. And for the first time that I can remember, I genuinely like the young woman on the show, Desiree Hartsock. I find her very attractive. I think I might even have a little crush on her.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Royal Baby
Written by Rob Rogers on Thursday, 25 July 2013.

All this fuss over the royal birth is a little disconcerting. What about all the babies born into poverty who will struggle all their lives against things like hunger, violence and discrimination. Shouldn't those be the ones we cheer for?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

For the record, I will take this heat and humidity over winter in February any day.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Sid Bream

DAVE: Do you know what Sid Bream does for a living now? He's an inspirational speaker in Pittsburgh. Ain't that just a bitch.

JIM: I did not know that. That ain't right.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Sid Bream

JIM: The Phillies announcers talked about Sid Bream during last night's game. Several times.

DAVE: When the Pirates are on national TV, they invariably mention Sid Bream. It hurts me.


Lately, I have been watching old episodes of "Friends" on TBS because apparently, I am still infatuated with Jennifer Aniston. And let me tell you that she looks even better and more "perky," if you know what I mean, in high definition.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Cinderella Darlene
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 05 June 2013.

City Council President Darlene Harris switched her party registration to Independent so she would be eligible to compete for mayor in the general election. Does she really think she has a shot? Or is there some odd conspiracy being cooked up between Harris and the current mayor?

Monday, June 3, 2013

JIM: You seem to have lost interest in your blog. Is everything OK?

DAVE: Yeah, I just don't really have anything to say. I'm really, really quietly observing.

JIM: Well, you could at least blog about having nothing to say then. You are leaving your loyal readers hanging.

DAVE: Perhaps I will do that.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Taste Test
Written by Rob Rogers on Thursday, 23 May 2013.

Wow! The voters of Pittsburgh stood up to the democratic machine. They said "no" to politics as usual. It's enough to give a cynic hope.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Mayor-to-be Bill Peduto.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Soap Opera
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 01 May 2013.

Jack Wagner has run for a lot of offices. He's been City Council President, a State Senator and State Auditor General. He has also run unsuccessfully for mayor and governor. Now, with Luke out of the way, he has jumped into the mayor's race at the last minute. If this doesn't work out, maybe he can run for governor again.

Monday, April 29, 2013

I have two observations from the weekend.

Mayoral candidate Jack Wagner is called stoic, but what he really is is boring.

I like Justin Timberlake. I don't want to, but I can't help myself.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Gun Legislation
Written by Rob Rogers on Friday, 12 April 2013.

Yes, the Senate is considering some mild changes to the gun laws and then the House will do the same. But don't be fooled. They will never change their true religion.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Many of my friends know that for many years I depended on the opinions of Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert when deciding what movies to go see or to rent. After Gene Siskel died, the opinions of Roger Ebert became the gold standard. Both men were reportedly special people and talented columnists, and they both died too young.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Brewed On Grant: Peduto Magic
Written by Rob Rogers on Wednesday, 03 April 2013.

Pittsburgh's mayoral race has turned into a wild political ride. First Luke, Peduto and Lamb were in. Then, Luke was out. Then everybody and his mother jumped in. Then, after thinking about it for a week or so, a bunch of people dropped out. Now there are only four left. Peduto is still one of them.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Sometimes I think highlights just don't work. These are the worst I've ever seen. Even worse than Pam Oliver.

Monday, April 1, 2013

These are Pittsburgh's five mayoral candidates. They were obviously seated a little close together for this photo. Poor Bill Peduto looks incredibly uncomfortable.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Orie Melvin resigns; governor has chance to appoint new justice
Convicted justice to depart May 1
March 26, 2013 12:12 am
By Timothy McNulty / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Republican Gov. Tom Corbett will have to reach across the aisle to fill a seventh seat on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which has been deadlocked for nearly a year.

Suspended Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin submitted her resignation Monday, a month after she was convicted on public corruption charges. She is due to be sentenced May 7 and in a letter to Gov. Corbett, she said "it is with deep regret and a broken heart" that she tendered her resignation, effective May 1.

"It has been my honor and privilege to serve the people of this Commonwealth for the past 28 years, and I am deeply saddened that I am not able to fulfill my commission."


Monday, March 25, 2013

Frozen Gun Laws
Written by Rob Rogers on Sunday, 24 March 2013.

Despite all the talk by Obama and others about stricter gun laws in the wake of the Newtown massacre, it looks like once again Congress won't have the courage to take on assault weapons. This is just sad.

Friday, March 22, 2013

A softer side of Katherine Webb, just for Mr. Blondie.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Al Franken has had an interesting path to the U.S. Senate. Do you remember way back when he was on "Saturday Night Live," he had a small part in the movie "Trading Places" as one of the two guys entrusted to guard a gorilla on a train on New Year's Eve? He's come a long way, to be sure.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Mayoral Mess 
Written by Rob Rogers on Tuesday, 05 March 2013.

Boy Mayor, the cartoonist's gift that keeps on giving, will no longer be giving after 2013. That's right, folks. The juice box comes with an expiration date.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Big Wheel Down
Written by Rob Rogers on Monday, 04 March 2013.

Luke Ravenstahl shocked the region when he said he wouldn't be seeking another term as mayor. Nobody is sadder about the news than I am.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Although there have not been any major snowfalls in this part of the country this winter, it still seems like it has been a long, laborious winter. There have been numerous smaller snowfalls, and it has been bloody cold. As for me, it's been an unpleasant winter. I guess it's possible that I'm getting soft as I get older. I probably am. This winter has been so miserable for me, personally, that I am hoping, however fantastically, that this will be my last winter in Pittsburgh. I'm hoping that once I get my health issues worked out that I will be able to move my life to Florida and join my parents down there year round. There are so many things that I would miss about living in Pittsburgh, as I truly love this city. But I feel as though the writing is on the wall. And it says move to Florida.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

What is the appropriate time in the morning for people to start using their snow blowers?

Friday, January 25, 2013

What's up with the commercials with Stephen Dorff for electronic cigarettes? What's an electronic cigarette? It's weird seeing commercials on TV for cigarettes. Other than on "Mad Men."

Friday, January 11, 2013

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

DAVE: Did you see the camera shots of A.J. McCarron's girlfriend in the stands? Truly beautiful. In a world where the term is overused.

JIM: Very beautiful, yes. But old man Brent Musburger gushing over her the way that he did was kind of creepy.

Is that us now too? Are we the creepy old guys when we talk about beautiful women? I don't feel like I'm there yet, but I'm not sure how I would know.

DAVE: We're not there, yet. And we're not on TV.

JIM: Thanks. I guess I feel better about myself now.

DAVE: Did you Google her, yet? I did.

JIM: I did not. I wanted to be surprised by the Hot Girl Friday pics.

DAVE: With Katherine Webb the hottest search on Google today, are you really going to wait to see if I post a photo on Friday?

JIM: I will let you sift through all of the online noise using your vaunted high-speed Internet. I know you only post the best, and I am willing to wait for that.