Now that the primary season has wrapped up, I thought I’d share one of my favorite moments from the last year:
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Last week when I was on jury duty, I was in need of a good espresso. I asked a couple of the marshals who were working the entrance for their recommendations, and they told me about Motore Coffee up the street.
From the moment I walked in, I knew it was going to be way better than Starbucks. The decor was really cool, the people were friendly, and the barista man knew his stuff. I had a double shot, and it was thick and complex and when I finished it, there was a beautiful layer of crema coating the inside of the cup. Not to beat a theme to death, but it was everything that Starbucks is not.
I was looking for their website yesterday and found their architect’s site with some great pictures. I’ll definitely be going back. Quite possibly the best cup of espresso I’ve ever had.
I still don’t get the whole MySpace thing — it just seems clunky and poorly designed. But I finally broke down and signed up.
I wanted to post something about these last week, but jury duty ate my available brain cells. Just a couple of things I came across in pop culture that gave me pause:
1. Last weekend I was watching X-Men on tv and during the commercials they were showing previews of the new Hulk movie. At the end of the clip, they showed the typical frame with the credits, etc. But something at the bottom caught my eye. It went away fast enough (I wasn’t watching on Tivo so couldn’t go back) that I had to make a point of watching for it again. And sure enough, I wasn’t seeing things. There on the bottom of the screen:
Really? Nevermind the gratuitous violence that a movie like Hulk is guaranteed to have, the likelihood of questionable language or whatever else may be present, this is what Hollywood feels they need to warn people about? Wow.
2. Tomato mania led to this handy chart from the Today show. I saw it on screen on the show and, fortunately for my blogging purposes, they posted a similar graphic on their website.
My thought: Who is watching this coverage and thinking, “I wonder if those tomatoes out on my patio are responsible for this nationwide salmonella outbreak?” Either they get more calls from these nutjobs than we realize if they don’t include that bit of information and so include it as a preventive measure, or they really hold their audience in such low regard that they include it to be helpful.
Having worked the switchboard at a major metropolitan daily paper, I’m inclined to believe the first; having seen some of the drivel they pass off as news on the third and now fourth hour of that program, I don’t doubt the second.
I was listening to an older episode of This American Life on the way home from jury duty today and I liked this speech — so much, in fact, that I took the time to write it out when I got on the train. It’s from a very unexpected source, so read it and see if you can guess who said it. Click on the “keep reading” link below to see if you guessed correctly.
We came over on the Queen Mary. January 19 – January 24, a five-day voyage over to America, in 1949.
And when we arrived, my very first memory was my mom waking me up and saying, “Gerald, we have to go up on the top deck there” — one of the decks of the Queen Mary — and all I remember — the rest has been told to me, I was only five — but I vividly remember everyone standing out on the top of the ship, on the deck there, there were about two thousand passengers on board packed together — packed together — and what I remember other than being freezing is that nobody said a word.
It was absolute quiet and we were passing the Statue of Liberty.
And my mother told me later on (as I got older, because obviously I wouldn’t remember exactly what I had said) that she remembered me asking her, “What are we looking at?”, and, you know, what does it mean? And she said, in German, Ein tach alles — “One day, everything.”
The Statue of Liberty means everything. We take it for granted today. We take it for granted.
Remember, the Statue of Liberty stands for what America is. We as Democrats have to remind ourselves and remind the country the great principles we stand for.
This is a place of protection. This is not a country of bullies.
We are not an empire. We are the light.
We are the Statue of Liberty.
Two things I hope for as a result of my parenting skills: a strong spiritual foundation and a healthy knowledge of and appreciation for rock and roll (in that order, of course). If they grow up and leave home with a solid grasp of biblical values and faith in Christ that will sustain them through whatever they might encounter in life, I will be a proud parent. If they have that and can tell me who Led Zeppelin’s drummer was, I will be thrilled.
To that end, I like to play different kinds of music when I’m in the car with the boys, and it touches my heart as a father when I hear them yell, “Turn it up, dad!” They love the Black Eyed Peas, Arctic Monkeys, Jane’s Addiction, Vampire Weekend, the Police (of course), the Clash, and They Might Be Giants, and I’m adding new artists to their repertoire constantly. Peanut likes to tell us each what our part is in our car band (“I’ll be the ka-tar”) and we jam. I always have to be the singer because 1) I know the words, and 2) it’s not safe to play the ka-tar while I’m driving.
Tonight on the way home from pizza, Peanut and I were in the car. I decided to put on some Rock Lobster to listen to (classic B-52’s), and no sooner than the first “skedoodliebop” came on the speakers did he say, “Dad, can you turn it down?”
Puzzled, I asked, “Don’t you want to listen to rock and roll?”
“I do, but not if there’s girls singing.”
Last night I was at the computer working on the yearbook for Chester’s school (as the late, great Douglas Adams said, “I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.”) and I heard Peanut laughing hysterically. As the sound grew closer, it became more distinct.
Vrrrrrrrrrrrrr . . . “Hahahahahaha!”
He then walked into the room and said, “Dad, look what I’m doing!” as he pulled up his shirt and gave himself a hickie on his stomach with one of these.