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Memoirs of a Lunatic

The title almost says it all. I'm a little insane, like all folks, and I'm just putting down what I think about. Maybe some of it is funny, maybe some of it isn't. Just come read and find out for yourself.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Mmm Mmm Good

Last night Alex and his wife Megan brought over dinner for our family. They brought slow-cooked pot roast (one of my favorites), corn (one of my favorites), delicious macaroni and cheese, rolls, and a huge stack of cookies.

It was all so good. I ate so fast and so much that you would probably swear that I had never eaten before. I just couldn't get it down fast enough! My kids remarked about how good it all was and one of my daughters' friends who ate with us wolfed it down as well. My wife had said that the friend wouldn't eat any of the roast because she didn't like meat, but she sure pounded some down. A testimony to the deliciousness, I'd say!

So, a very special thank you to Alex and Megan for the grub. It was yumtastic!


At 3/01/2007 8:55 AM, Blogger loelsh said...

Yes, it was delectable!!

At 3/01/2007 9:16 PM, Blogger Alex said...

I can't take any of the credit for that one. 100% props to Meg. And somehow she managed to cook a second dinner for us, too! Glad you guys enjoyed!


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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Outpouring of Support

Since I've received the news of my mom's passing, I've received a ton of support and condolences. First, from our friends Alicia and Matt who were with us when I got the news, through people at church, and on to all of my co-workers.

I certainly appreciate it very much and it is nice to know that one has such good friends during times like these.


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Monday, February 26, 2007

A Sad Day

On Saturday night, we learned that my mother passed away. My brother arrived to where she was to find EMTs working furiously on her, but she was dead when they got there. My brother had talked to her on the phone 20 minutes before getting there and she was alive and fine. So, somewhere in those 20 minutes, she had a seizure, 911 was called, and the squad had arrived. They did all they could do and it was not enough.

There are a lot of things still to do and without a will several people have very strong ideas of what needs to happen. There is also a complicated family situation that I won't go into here that leaves it a bit in question as to who gets to call the shots.

I recommend everyone get life insurance and a will. It isn't for you, it is for the family you leave behind!!!


At 2/26/2007 8:11 AM, Blogger Trinity13 said...

I am very sorry for your loss and we will continue to keep you and your family in our prayers.

At 2/27/2007 10:32 AM, Anonymous Jennifer said...


I am very sorry for your loss. I will pray for you and your family during this hard time.


At 2/27/2007 4:59 PM, Blogger Guru said...

Trin: Thank you very much. My sympathies go out to you, as well, during this time of tragic loss in your life.

PJ: Thanks for stopping by and for the condolences, as well. They are very much appreciated.


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Sunday, February 25, 2007

Up Late With Stewie and Brian

Up Late

Add to My Profile | More Videos


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Saturday, February 24, 2007

Very Busy, Have a Video pt 2


At 2/25/2007 8:36 AM, Blogger loelsh said...



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Friday, February 23, 2007

Very Busy, Have a Video


At 2/25/2007 8:30 AM, Blogger loelsh said...

Wow! Now that's talent!


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Thursday, February 22, 2007

I Do Not Get It

Lovie Smith, the coach of the Bears, is the lowest paid head coach in the NFL. Well, someone has to be right? However, it just does not make sense in this case. The Bears aren't hurting for money and Lovie is a darn fine coach.

In 2005, Lovie Smith was the Coach of the Year. In 2006, he led the Bears to their first Super Bowl appearance in 20 years. His reward? He is still the lowest paid coach in the NFL. It just doesn't seem right.


At 2/23/2007 10:23 AM, Blogger Gooey said...

He still makes more than you or I, so that's all that really matters I suppose. I personally don't get why they're paid all the money they are. Sure they're in the national spotlight, and serve as a representative for an entire city or even state, but do they really need to be paid as much as they are?


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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Ah, Steak

So, we have clients in town. Clients in town means clients get to go out to eat to a nice dinner. Nice dinner means some people get to go along. I got to be people tonight! My company took the 4 partners, a director, our head project manager, and 4 out of 6 Leads out to dinner at the same place that we had our Christmas party dinner.

I got the coffee cured fillet (no coffee flavor) that Lo got that evening and ended up very full with food. The conversation was a bit awkward at first, but we got the ball rolling.

I guess we'll find out tomorrow if we ended up being inappropriate!


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American Idol Top 12 Guys

I fired up the old DVR and watched Idol last night after I got home and was "treated" to the top 12 guys. It really is amazing throughout the competition to listen to these singers get better.

I remember for the past several seasons thinking that the people just weren't good enough, but then by the later rounds of the semi-finals and even more so in the late rounds of the finals, I like so many of them.

Sticking with that theme, I was not terribly impressed with last night's show. I really like Chris Sligh - and I guess he did okay - in my opinion however, I was most impressed with Blake Lewis.

I was glad that he didn't come out beat boxing, as I don't want him to get eliminated because America thinks he can't sing. He did the right thing, and he should save it up for a knockout punch to a song when he really needs it.

I'm looking forward to hearing the girls tonight.


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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Moved Again!!!

Man, I thought that I might be able to stay put for awhile. But, alas, no. At work, we just rented a bunch more space (across the street from our office, actually) and one whole section of the office moved over there. While the area that I was in will eventually have all if its walls knocked down to make one large room, it is still intact for now.

However, with clients coming for the week, my room proved to be a perfect place to put them. Easy access to a restroom, conference table, sink, fridge, microwave, coffee pots, and white boards. So, the clients are holing up there and I am now moved into the spot vacated by those going across the street.

At least I still get a window... and 65-70 hour weeks to go with it... Even trade right??!?!? ;-)


At 2/21/2007 8:19 AM, Blogger loelsh said...

Yeah, a window seat is priceless!


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Monday, February 19, 2007


Today is President's Day and I'm supposed to be off of work. Well, that isn't how I get down!!!

I headed in to work today and put in some time from about 10:30am until 6:00pm. Not too bad for a federal holiday. Only 7 people worked today and of that group, only 4 of us put in a lot of time. Good news was my boss took us out for lunch! I love free food.

Oh, well. Good thing I love what I do!!!


At 2/20/2007 8:51 AM, Blogger loelsh said...

I LOVE your boss! He's great!


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Sunday, February 18, 2007

Bass Effects Pedal

Last Saturday, I got a new effects pedal for my bass guitar. Well, two points of correction on that. First, I bought it used so it was new to me. Second, when I say "new pedal", that may also imply that I had one before. That is not the case. This is my first effects pedal and I got it just like the bass guitar itself... "gently used". Here is a picture of the thing:

BFX 708

Beautiful, isn't it? (Just being dorky.) It sounds pretty good and it definitely enhances my guitar, especially because my guitar has passive electronics in it. On stage at church, my instrument goes right to the board through a direct box and I had almost no signal.

The pedal has something like a trillion effects on it, more or less :-). Reviews online said that most people thought that it was a pretty good pedal, though the construction had been called into question (there are instructions on how to fix it). Another gripe from more serious musicians was that some of the effects were cheesy and only 3 or 4 were "stage quality", or good enough to play at a gig.

That's fine for me, as a pedal that makes one good effect can run upwards of $100.00 and if I even get two good sounds from this in addition to more volume control from my instrument, the $40.00 I spent (it was about $130.00 new when it first came out) will be well worth it.


At 2/20/2007 11:04 AM, Anonymous Charles said...

I have a Zoom pedal for my electric guitar -- love it. Also just bought a Korg PX4D (which is also for bass guitar) and it is a sweet unit.


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Saturday, February 17, 2007


Some (but not all) keywords that people have used to find this site in the last few days (my thoughts are in italics):

  • level three snow emergency delaware ohio (I find it funny that my blog would appear anywhere reasonably high on this search because I worked from home due to this snow emergency on Wednesday.)

  • maddox u2 (This search is a staple. Ever since I posted anything about this, anytime I check my stats, this search is there.)

  • photosmart m525 transfer pictures how the [expletive deleted] do you do it (I feel really bad for this person. This is the camera that I have and I would have blogged about it, but I didn't answer that question. If you still need to know, leave a comment or something with problems you are having and I'll try to help!)

  • i never sleep cause sleep is the causing of death (This one is funny to me because a)this kind of search is another staple and b)the person is searching for a misquote. The line is "sleep is the cousin of death".)

  • did meredith die on grey's anatomy 2/15 (Ahhh. I actually know this one. As far as death on the show, I know what is going to happen! If you just *have* to know, too, search for "grey's anatomy spoilers" in google and you'll get your answer from one of the top few sites returned.)


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Friday, February 16, 2007


Well, Lunatic fans, the batch of salmonella Peanut Butter has reached even the hallowed halls of the Guru-Estate.

My wife had bought some peanut butter from Wal-Mart (the Great Value brand mentioned in the article). The next day I began to hear about this story so I called her to check and sure enough, our jar was part of the 2111 batch.

I'm very glad that my son didn't eat a bunch of this peanut butter and get sick!


At 2/19/2007 8:26 AM, Blogger loelsh said...

Glad we heard about the recall before we even opened the jar!!


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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Dogbert and His Amazing Password Recovery

You probably have to be a geek to love this fully, but I'd imagine most of you can at least get a chuckle...

Dogbert's Password Recovery

Dogbert's Password Recovery


At 2/15/2007 6:29 PM, Blogger loelsh said...


At 2/16/2007 6:56 AM, Blogger Guru said...

Wow, maybe you do have a some nerd in you. Well, aside from the usual times that you might have some nerd in you, if you know what I mean...


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Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Snow Day Part Deux

So, the city that I work in (Delaware, Ohio) was under a level three snow emergency this morning. That means that no one is supposed to drive unless they are part of emergency personnel. Employers are encouraged to pretty much cancel work or make alternative arrangements. Most restaurants near my work were closed and all of the banks in downtown Delaware were closed as well. I'll tell you how I knew that in a bit.

Thanks to the snow emergency, it was another work from home day today. I got up, put in some work and tried to keep the kids at a reasonable volume so that Lo could sleep in. When she got up (a little rascal slipped upstairs), I gave her her Valentine's Day card and present. She had already given me mine on Saturday, because it was something that I "needed" for Sunday.

On I worked until a work crisis arose. It was a little after 2pm and the snow emergency level in Delaware was now 2, which meant that people were allowed to drive in. It was requested that I did drive in, so I did.

As another nicety, Lo got bundled up while I was showering and cleaned off the inch of ice from all over my car. Thanks, Lo!

The roads weren't bad by this point and I got there in about an hour. I did my work thing (until about 7pm) and headed home to watch some TV and eat pizza with the fam. Lo and I will get our evening out some other time. We didn't have kidcare and restaurants are waaaay too busy tonight, anyway.

Long story short, it was a long, eventful day. However, I still want to take time to say:



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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Snow Day

Well, Ohio is going to get pounded with mad amounts of snow today and the kids are off school again. This makes 5 out of the last 8 days that they didn't have school due to weather.

However, today has a catch. I am also off of work due to the weather. Well, that isn't entirely true. I don't have to go in, but I am going to work from home. I actually work almost an hour from where I live and this heavy snowfall wouldn't make that commute fun. We were told that this could happen yesterday and then this morning, received this e-mail memo from HR:

Good Morning!

There are three inches of snow on the ground already this morning with the forecast calling for an additional 5 - 9 inches this afternoon. There is still also the threat of freezing rain.

Those people living any distance from work should stay home- those living close to work can use their discretion. For those that are planing to come into work, I will be at the office at 9:00 as will several others.

Please be aware that if the sheriff calls a level thee snow emergency, you will be stuck where you are; non-emergency vehicles will be ticketed and the fines are huge. Call or email either your supervisor or me if you have questions. Thanks.

So, as the person who lives 2nd furthest from the office (missed being first by 6 miles), I am definitely included in the "don't come in" group. I'll tell you what, though. I feel really bad that I can't go in, like I'm letting them down somehow - even though I'll still probably put in a good 10-11 hours today (before writing this, I've already put in an hour). I'm such a dork.


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Monday, February 12, 2007

Budding Ar-Teest

My son has always had a penchant from drawing on things that he shouldn't. The other day, he maneuvered some things in the kitchen and climbed up on the counter. He opened a cabinet, got out a permanent marker and drew this:

My son's likeness on a cabinet

My son's likeness on a cabinet

When my wife saw it, she knew exactly what it was. When I got home and saw it, I knew exactly what it was, too. It is his self portrait. He draws it all the time.

The funny thing is that we never draw anyone from their profile angle. When we draw pictures for him, we draw the pure circle, straight ahead version that most people do. If you notice the picture, he has drawn his profile complete with veed neckline at the t-shirt level, ear, proper bump in the back of the head, hair, eyes, mouth, and nose (notice the fact that the circle just out slightly in the space between the mouth and the eyes). The markings outside the circle aren't part of the face and were probably made on accident.

Seeing this isn't just a parent thing either, that was his intention. Whenever he sees the drawing he says that "that is baby up dere".

We're mad because we are having a difficult time getting this out of the cabinets. Magic Eraser got it out of everything else, but merely smeared the squiggles at the bottom of the cabinet. However, I'm also pretty proud that he made such an easily recognizable drawing at 2 3/4. I admit I'm biased, but I am still pretty darn proud.


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Sunday, February 11, 2007

My Little Ballplayer

Here is my 9 year old in this year's basketball photo.

Upward Basketball


At 2/12/2007 9:01 AM, Blogger loelsh said...

Also so cute!!


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Saturday, February 10, 2007

My Little Cheerleader

Here is the 7 year old in this year's cheerleading photo.

Our Cheerleader


At 2/11/2007 7:07 PM, Blogger loelsh said...

So cute!!!


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Friday, February 09, 2007

The Big Oh-Seven

My younger daughter turned SEVEN today! That just blows my mind how quickly those calendar years keep ticking away!

She, of course, had school today. Since today was her birthday, she was prepared to take a birthday snack/treat into her class. However, since it was someone else's birthday, too, she has to wait for Monday to take the snack. That got her day off to a bit of a bad start.

She somehow managed to muddle through ;) and make it home. After I got home, we went to Smokey Bones to have a celebratory meal and then we came home to open her presents.

Seven Years Old!

Happy Birthday, Honey!!!


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Thursday, February 08, 2007

Anna Nicole Smith Dead

Anna Nicole Smith
Today is a sad day for the adolescent boy in me. Anna Nicole Smith was found unresponsive in her hotel room and was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.

I've always loved me some Anna Nicole Smith. I had her poster up in my room when I was a teenager and have always had a soft spot for her through the years, even through her up and down periods.

I hope that drugs aren't found to be involved and compound this tragedy further.


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Wednesday, February 07, 2007


The Drive Home
So, it snowed here last night, right? Right. We got something like 3 inches of snow. Basically it means practically nothing.

However, I tried to play it smart and since I have about an hour long commute anyway, I worked until around 7:40pm so that I would "miss all of the traffic". What am I, stupid? Have I not lived here for almost 16 years?

My trip home still took a little over two hours!!! What the devil are people trying to deal with that they can't just freaking drive!!!! You would think some sort of blizzard had occurred and someone had just dropped 12 inches of the the white stuff on us, but nooooo. Three inches and people are screaming! (Get your mind out of the gutter!)

The Drive Home
I just don't know how to respond to this. Every year, I somehow expect that the experience that these people have gained in prior years will help them this year, but I am proven wrong again and again.

My drive in this morning took about an hour and a half. AND THE ROADS WERE FINE!!! The radio said that there were something like 6 accidents on the freeways and they were CLEAR!!! I don't get it. Increase the distance between you and the surrounding cars, watch for places ice forms, change direction slowly. 3 points and we're safe.

Can't stand people...


At 2/07/2007 4:00 PM, Blogger loelsh said...

How'd you know my mind was in the gutter? ;)


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Tuesday, February 06, 2007


Jack Bauer

Last night's episode of 24 was very tense. About halfway through the episode, I realized that my heart was really pounding and my breathing was really shallow. I was really into the drama behind Jack interrogating his brother.

I ended up being right in judging his father, but was shocked (though I kick myself for not seeing it) about Morris.

This was a really good episode and the next few are going to be out of control. I'm really glad that I started watching the show.


At 2/06/2007 2:08 PM, Blogger Gooey said...

SPOILER Alert for anyone who hasn't seen the episode yet:

My friend called the Morris thing, but he thought Morris would willingly help them, not that he would be kidnapped and forced into arming the nukes for them.

Same friend also came up with an awesome saying: Jack puts the "fun" in "dysfunctional family".


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Monday, February 05, 2007

The Commercials

Was it just me, or did the Super Bowl commercials not seem as good or imaginative this year? I had a few that I liked, like the Kevin Federline "Life comes at you fast" commercial, and the "rock, paper, scissors" commercial wasn't too bad.

I don't know how long this will work, but for now, you can see all of the Super Bowl ads on You Tube right here.

My top 5 Super Bowl XLI ads:

  1. Nationwide Kevin Federline

  2. Snickers Kissing Mechanics

  3. Bud Light Rock, Paper, Scissors

  4. Bud Select Jay-Z vs Don Shula (it looked cool)

  5. Go Daddy Marketing Office (on general principle!)

Did any of you have any faves?


At 2/06/2007 2:12 PM, Blogger Gooey said...

I thought the Bud Light "Rock, Paper, Scissors," commercial was the best. Other favorites were the E*Trade "One Finger", Bud Light's "Face Slap", Nationwide's Federline commercial, and some others I likely can't name. needs to grow up and try something new. I'm a little tired of them constantly, "riding the line," with the commercials. You know they purposely produce commercials they know won't hold mustard with the NFL just so they can say, "LOOK! OUR FIRST REJECTED COMMERCIAL FOR THE YEAR!"

Only reason I liked it was because Kevin Rose and Alex Albrecht were in there dancing with hotties.


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Sunday, February 04, 2007

Super Bowl

Well, it didn't start well for the Colts, but it sure ended well.

It was funny that when the game was getting ready to start, I was telling my wife how very fast Devin Hester was. I told her how he had performed 6 returns resulting in TDs this year. Next thing you know, he is gone and it was the BCS title game all over again.

I was really concerned when Peyton threw the opening interception and everyone and their mother was fumbling the darn ball. However, Indy started to pull it together while Chicago continued to fall apart.

Peyton got over his first series interception to go on to not only win his first Super Bowl, but be the MVP of that thing. I would say that the monkey can now officially be off of his back! Now people can't say he is "among the greatest never to win a championship" and just discuss him "among the greatest".

Congratulations to the Peyton and the Colts.

Peyton Manning, Super Bowl Champion


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Saturday, February 03, 2007

NYC Photos

I know you are all relieved at this... this should be my last post about my NYC trip. I didn't get too many good pictures, but here they go.

First my room. I got a room with two full sized beds instead of a king, but I still had the 42" Plasma!!!

Guru's Room at the Millennium Hilton

I did get chocolates on my pillow though...

Chocolates on Pillow

The only scenery that I took a picture of was of the World Trade Center. Here is a photo of the entrance to the area.

World Trade Center

Here is a photo of the construction taken with my camera phone from our client's building during the day.

World Trade Center

Here is a photo of the construction taken with my regular camera from my hotel room at night.

World Trade Center

I got to see the Brooklyn Bridge, Yankee Stadium, Shea Stadium, and the Empire State Building all from either the plane or a cab, but didn't take pictures of any of them.

I also went through Chinatown in the cab and got to see that Statue of Liberty from a conference room on the 41st floor of our client's building. That was pretty cool!

One last thing that I did in NY that I'm kind of proud of is ... wait for it ... I hailed my own cab! First try, first cab. Then, I tried to proceed like I had totally hailed my own cab before and had been the only person IN a cab before. I was good until we were about halfway there and he started talking to me and I couldn't understand him. I'll bet REAL New Yorkers don't have that problem :)

Speaking of cab drivers, man do they drive badly! The lines on the road are just a suggestion, I kid you not. They change lanes at will and even when they are driving "straight", they swerve all over the place. I was almost speechless during my trips to and from the airport just from that.

All in all, a good trip and I'm glad I went. Thanks, boss, for sending me!


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Friday, February 02, 2007

New York Eats

The best part of every business trip is that you get to eat like a king. The first night, before we ended up meeting with any clients, we hit Bobby Van's Steakhouse. This particular Bobby Van's boasts this: (from their website)
Bobby Van's Steakhouse and Grill located across from the New York Stock Exchange uses the original 1898 structure to create lush and evocative dining rooms filled with dark wood, cream-colored walls and beautiful chandeliers. Pass through the glass entrance of the steakhouse into the grand dining room with 20' ceilings to face a gorgeous 20-foot bar and a floor-to-ceiling wall of wine and liquor. Dine under the soft lighting of the grand chandeliers and enjoy succulent 28-day dry-aged prime steaks and the freshest seafood.

The Vault Grill on the lower level was once J.P. Morgan & Co.'s original bank vault, which was installed by Remington & Sherman Co. in 1902 The Vault Bar's elongated room is lined with vault doors, two of which showcase Bobby Van's extensive Wine Vault. The 22-foot wood paneled bar boasts a large selection of spirits which you can also enjoy at one of the rich tapestry-covered banquettes.

In the center of the room is the impressive six-foot circular main vault door which opens into The Vault. The walls are lined with the original antique deposit boxes that lend a rich bronze hue to the room. The dark wood accents, mirrored pillars and classic lighting transport you to another time when JP Morgan and John D Rockefeller ruled Manhattan.

Pretty cool, huh? I got a $43.00 Filet Mignon that was HUGE and very very delicious. I wish that I could have had more.

The next night, with the clients, we at at Salaam Bombay, an Indian restaurant that is described here:
Salaam Bombay has been a treasure trove of a restaurant for more than 8 years. Serving fine Indian cuisine prepared with the purest of spices, the menu has been celebrated for its wide representation of the regional cuisine of India. Nestled in the hip, cultural hub of Lower Manhattan, this oasis of lilting Sitar music and rich earth-toned d├ęcor, Salaam Bombay restaurant is as much a part of TriBeCa as the cash-churning, glass-granite skyscrapers that seemingly reach for the skies.

I liked this restaurant a little less, of course, because I am not the world's biggest Indian Food fan, but it was still pretty good. Everyone else seemed to enjoy it immensely. I had picked out a dish that I thought that I would love, but that table decided to order 10 entrees (there were 8 of us) and share. So, I got boned a bit on that, but I can't complain cuz it was free!

The next morning (my travel day - still eating on the company's dime), I ate a little more in line with my normal habits. I got a Burger King breakfast at La Guardia and a McDonald's lunch at Port Columbus. A nice transition back to reality...


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Thursday, February 01, 2007

How Business is Done

One of the truly neat things that came out of my trip to NYC was that I got to see firsthand how a lot of business "is done". One of my boss' biggest reasons for attending meetings like this in person rather than on the phone is the chance to network.

Everyone in NY knew him. We were just walking down the hall and everyone waved or said hi. It was ridiculous. We weren't at some 10 person shop - we were in a huge building with many thousands of employees. My boss definitely knows how to play the game.

I was part of some meetings where we just sat down face to face and hammered some things out that never get done on the phone or many thousand miles away. It was just amazing to see.

The part I especially liked, of course, was getting to take as many people as would go out to a nice restaurant to "wine and dine" them. Very cool to be a tag-a-long then!


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Name: Pete
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