Friday, December 24, 2010

A Christmas Whine with That Cheese... Ho Ho Ho

I stopped at the grocery store to get the ingredients to make a hawaiian cheeseball to take over to the girls house for Christmas.... here's how it broke down:

Philadelphia Pineapple Cream Cheese... $2.89
Philadelphia Chive and Onion Cheese.... $2.89
1 Can of Cashews (halves and peices).... $2.79

Oh, and a couple of last minute gift cards for the nephews....

Final Cost.... TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS!!! (WHAT??)

Merry Christmas everybody... May the Good Lord bless and keep you as we celebrate His birthday. Without HIM, there is no Christmas!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Steering In A Better Direction...

Feeling grateful,
Yeah, that seems to be a recurring theme with me these days. Gratitude. Yep, I can't shake it. I got home from Battle Creek on Sunday in the middle of the snow/ice storm and saw multiple cars spin out and end up in ditches. I got up on monday morning heading into work and spun out trying to turn on the entrance ramp of the highway. I stayed on the road though so I was grateful for that. Then as I'm cruising at a slow speed on the highway, two cars directly in front of me, both spin out at the same time. One sticks it in the median rail to my left, and the one on the right sticks it into a ditch. Man, talk about white knuckling it on the way to work. Once I got there, I breathed a huge sigh of relief and gave thanks. The ride home was much smoother, but boy did I ever take it slow. Of course I've got like 9 days to shop for Christmas, and I haven't even started yet!! My gal pal thinks of me as a "typical man" because of my pension for procrastination. Thankfully, they're having a book fair (which includes more than just books) so I can finally get started. I've got mostly nephews and such to get for... I'll spoil the gal pal because her birthday is the day after Christmas. So I'll make sure to do things right. I won't be dropping to a knee just yet, but she already knows that. And she knows that one day, I will. In the mean time, I get to spoil her like crazy and love her like only a crazy man can!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

It's the Most Wonderful Time Of the YEARRRRR...

It's getting mighty close to Jesus's birthday and I for one, am getting giddy. I think it's because I have learned to really appreciate that life is might precious and should not be taken for granted. I see my sisters working to make it. They used to avoid talking about their ages because that meant that they were getting older. Not anymore. They have come to appreciate every birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and everything else. I can't blame them at all. It's taught me a whole lot about having an attitude of gratitude.
While I'm grateful for life, I am FREEZING my butt off... My gal pal likes to refer to the area I live as "Siberia" and right now it's with good reason. We are in the 20's for highs and in the single digits for lows and wind chills below zero. Granted, I don't live in Alaska. Those folks know what cold is much more than we do. But I'll be the first to tell you, I like cold. BUT it has to be at least 30 degrees for cryin' out loud. I do sound like I'm whining. But that's becasue I'M COLD. I hope to stay warm while we are in the middle of a deep freeze. So I'm thinking about Christmas. Of course that means a whole different set of issues. Most notably, I don't know what the heck to buy my family for Christmas!!! Do you have anyone that you have a tough time buying for? Me, I got a bunch of them! Who are your toughest ones to buy for?

Monday, November 29, 2010

When a $20 Dollar Oil Change Costs $128 Dollars

I was getting ready to spend an afternoon with the gal pal since I haven't seen her in a while. So I stopped after work the day before to get the oil changed in my car since it had been a while. The sign said "Special $19.99" so I figured hey why not? So I pull in and order the oil change. I pop the hood, and tell the guy I just want a basic oil change. I sat in my car and the guy goes underneath the car and then comes back and tells me "Your transmission pan is leaking... and there is a lot and I do mean A LOT of dirty crap in your oil." So my 20 dollar oil change ended up costing me 128 smackers. But it made my gal pal happy because her little man got his car fixed up and got to spend six hours with her. How did we spend the six hours? That's a no-brainer... on her couch with me laying down with my head on her lap and her running her fingers through my hair as I fall asleep while watching the Ohio State - Michigan football game. I know, I know... you're saying "Mik, you are such a romantic!!" Well, think about it. Where else can I write about fixing my car, spending time with my one and only, AND reference sports while still showing that I love my best girl? Of course she was just happy to have me there in her arms, snoring like a freight train... I don't think she knew that the TV was even on... let alone who was playing in the game. But her man was there with her and that is all that matters. I love that girl I tell ya... I'm going to have to marry her some day. She's a keeper!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A Dork For All Seasons...

Hey all,
Well, Angela's fundraiser was a nice success and many thanks for the good wishes. She came out last Tuesday night to pick up the contributions I had for her silent auction and I ended up coralling her into doing a brief interview on the air. Of course she is not shy when it comes to talking to me but the beginning of the segment was vintage Angie and Mik...

Mik: So we welcome you to the show Ang. How ya doing?
Angela: Ohhhh, I'm okay I guess.
Mik: You weren't expecting me to do this, were you?

Angela: Uh, Nooooo I thought I was just picking up the prizes
Mik: Well, that's what you get for trusting me
Angela: Yeah, you'd think I'd know that by now
Mik: Gee, Ang, what are you trying to tell me?
Angela: I hate you!

At this point, the guests that were on the show all bust out laughing at me. I'm not sure of the final totals but then again, I'm just her brother so I don't count as important family... heh-heh... I'm sure I'll hear about it at a future family get together... hopefully like 20 years from now... you know what I mean?
A big "gee thanks guys" to all of you that are (with great intentions, I know) 'encouraging' the exchange of vows between me and my sweetie. She gets tickled every time she reads those comments. I know that down the road, I will be marrying her because she is the single greatest thing (this side of Heaven of course) to have ever happened to a dork like me. She is simply one warm, tender, caring, and incredible human being. I could not, cannot, nor would not, even remotely attempt to do any better than her. There is no one else that could ever occupy that spot for me. It's hers to toy and torture me with... I always tell her that even if I were stupid enough to give her any grief or back talk, she could just mow me down with her wheelchair and there's nothing I could do about it. But she loves me too... that's the icing on the cake. (sugar free of
Anyway, there are sooooooooooo many issues that are in the mix here. Distance, moving, job concerns, my family's health situations, the whole nine yards. After surveying multiple components and doing due diligence, it would make things very happy for the two of us emotionally, but very, very, very, difficult otherwise. I'm not going to rush cause I want to do things right. When it comes to the institution of marriage, I'm strictly old-school. I am a "one and done" guy. My best girl knows this and is understanding. She has the patience of a saint. I am doing things with my future with her in mind. She knows that also. She knows that she is stuck with me for better or worse (or as I like to say, 'warts and all') and she couldn't be happier. She just wishes that I were right there with her everyday. She misses me when I'm not there. I miss her too. I try to tell her "honey, be careful of what you wish for cause you might just get it..." But despite my best efforts to let her know what life with me would be like, she is still there for and loves me. And a good sign that she is in it for the long haul too... she hasn't mowed me down with her wheelchair yet!!!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Random Thoughts from a Random Mind

Some cool stuff happening around here...
They're having a Texas Hold'em Tournament, Spaghetti dinner, and silent auction tonight as a fundraiser for my kid sister Angie who had a double mastectomy last month. The fundraiser is to help offset the costs that her insurance didn't cover. The people at her job really came together and are going to make it special. Of course her big brother won't be there. I will be in St Louis broadcasting hockey games online this weekend and will be leaving in a few. But I'm sure she'll do fine. Yesterday was Terri's birthday. She told me how much she really appreciates each one now. I don't blame her. Last weekend, a player on the team we played was hurt and ended up hospitalized. So one of the assistant coaches stayed behind with him and they were in town till the player got released from the hospital yesterday. I spent my down time running back and forth with the coach and getting him out of the hospital to not go stir crazy and he seemed like a nice enough guy. But my gal pal didn't like not getting to spend ANY time with me this week. I'm gonna have to do something to make it up to her... She puts up with me so much... And deserves so much more than I give her. But she's satisfied with a goof like me. So I'm grateful and happy that she loves me. I know some have said that she's lucky to have me too. But I'm telling you folks, SHE is the amazing one. I'm just the big dork who loves her. I do what I do these days because the Good Lord put her in my life. I know I wouldn't be the guy that I am if she weren't around. I'd be empty, miserable, and a complete weenie, being a complete doorknob to people. THAT is how big of a difference she makes in my life. From doorknob, to weenie, to dork, to her Mik... it scares me sometimes when I think about how different my life is now with her in it. I am so blessed that I'm not the same schmuck that I used to be. Believe me, I was a pretty rotten guy... But I guess it took getting old and having your rear end handed to you a few times to appreciate life. She is the icing on the cake. Heck she IS the cake... of course now I've made myself hungry thinking of cake and wanting a big heaping slice of red velvet cake with 23 thousand layers of frosting on it. What in the heck is a diabetic supposed to do???? Ugh...

Friday, November 05, 2010

Keeping Sane Inspite of Feeling to the Contrary...

Hey all,
Wanted to take a few moments to update what's going on and say thanks to everyone for their prayers and good wishes. The girls are all continuing to battle courageously and holding their own as best they can. Me, I had gotten to spend a little time with the gal pal last weekend after not seeing each other in a long time because of my sports travel schedule and she just melted in my arms and I saw the look in her eyes and I knew that there was no way I could ever and I do mean EVER get away from her. I saw what love, what real true love looks like when she looked in my eyes. It made me forget about all the stuff going on in my life and made me realize that no matter how bad things get, that amazing woman is always there for me and I am so blessed. As long as I live, I'll never forget that look on her face. It was a gift from God that told me that we're gonna be okay. As the sign hanging in my house says: Faith means things are possible... not easy.
I'll check in a lot sooner for my next entry. Thanks for being so understanding and supportive...

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

We Now Return You To Your Regularly Scheduled Program...

Sorry I've taken so long for the update to the update. Lots has happened. Some good. Some... not so much. Ang has gotten good news in that her cancer is very treatable. The doctor likes her chances. She's feeling better than she was about the whole thing.
Now Terri on the other hand, got hit YET AGAIN with some crappy news. She too will have to have a double mastectomy. Her numbers were as bad as Angela's when they tested her. They wanted to do an MRI to be sure but the chemo she's been taking damaged her kidneys so they couldn't inject the dye and couldn't do the MRI... Plus two of her heart valves are leaking slightly so she just wants to just scream at the world something fierce. I don't blame her. I went to visit her at her house yesterday and she said "You know, I just want some sense of normalcy... is that too much to ask?" Well Terri, I'm guessing that normal and our family have never been on familiar terms so I would have to say a big fat NOPE to that one.... Me, I'm doing okay. Besides, what do I have to complain about? The girls are the ones that are going through all of this garbage. I just get to watch....

Friday, October 08, 2010

We Interrupt This Program To Bring You....

From the "Who says prayers aren't answered?" department:
When last I wrote, as my kid sister Angela was having a double mastectomy, she was told that they found more cancer in her lymphnodes. She was about as sunk as the Titanic with an anvil tied to it. Me, I simply felt numb. She's my kid sister for cryin' out loud! But then it started. I started getting emails and text messages etc. from people who were offering to pray for her. My gal pal got her entire church to lift my sister in prayer. I got some help from some pretty special people online. I know that there a lot of people that have prayed for my family and me... For that I am humbled and grateful. People like Helen down in 'Bama who is a Godly woman that prayed for us from the get-go. That meant a lot. From folks like Bucko over in Hoosier-land who offered kind words of support throughout this whole ride. My favorite Jersey girl Mary who has always been not only a friend but always gives me a little food for thought (as long as it's not chicken... Briege might get upset!). And a very awesome Canuck transplant (guess who Carolyn?) who got her entire group of prayer warriors to lift Angela up in prayer. I don't know most, if any of them, but Carolyn went to bat for me and my family. I know that it's always easy for people to say they'll pray for folks and then go on with the rest of their lives. But this time around, I really felt it. People were really praying for Angela. And when you wonder how your prayers will be answered, you really don't know. But then there's this: I get a note from Angela tonight that says "I got my labs back. The tests show that there's only one lymphnode that is cancerous (and very treatable). The rest of the lymphnodes have come back NEGATIVE!!!" I sat in stunned silence here at my place, all by myself, and smiled. I couldn't do anything else. How she went from her lymphatic system being cancerous to just ONE lymphnode? I know there are some that read my blog that aren't believers and that's okay, because you are very welcomed here too. I am no better than you and I never will be. But I am as sure as I am sitting here typing this, that the reason for Angela's change in her test results is because of GOD and your prayers. No one... wait, let me repeat, NO ONE can ever change my mind about that! I am a simple person who has been humbled by the concern and care of so many people for me and my family that they don't even know. But your thoughts and prayers have done something great here and I am beyond grateful. THANK YOU!!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Catchin' Up

Hey folks... sorry it's been so long. Lots going on around these parts as we try to deal with all these setbacks. First of all, my kid sister Angela is recovering from all day surgery, the double mastectomy. Well as if that wasn't bad enough, there always seems to be a curve ball thrown when it comes to my family. Sure enough, it turns out that they found more cancer in her lymphnodes. So radiation and chemo are the order of the day. I am just dumbfounded and numb right now. I'm so sick of this crap! You ever just wonder when enough is enough? I am sooooooo tempted to fall into that pity party. It is very tempting. But I'm not going to give in... I can't. It's not going to be that easy, but I'm determined to keep my faith. I'm not about to abandon ship now. As for the kid sister, she's still in la-la land so I'm not sure about her emotions right now. But she's got my other sister Terri to help her deal with the chemo and radiation issues that will need to be dealt with. There's not much to say right now as far as what's happening. I will get back on here in about another 10 days to two weeks to touch base and update what's going on in my completely warped and topsy turvy world...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Reconstruction Period

Thanks again for prayers and good wishes. My kid sister got the final confirmation that she'll need to lose both breasts but she's going to have reconstructive surgery done afterwards. She seems to be alright. She knows that she doesn't have much say in the matter. She's putting her energy into the Susan Komen "Race for the Cure". Something she had never done before. But now she's throwing herself head first into it and it seems to be helping her deal with things emotionally. I can only hope she keeps it up and keeps going. Having Terri there to help her navigate through everything can only be a help and a blessing. I went back over to her place cause her son was selling Entertainment 2011 books for his school fundraiser and she figured she strike while the guilt factor was hot. (did I mention that my family is very wacky?) While I was there, I overheard her talking with her friend on the phone about putting money together to get team t-shirts for the Race for the Cure event in our area. I just walked over and tossed some money to her and said "buy some shirts" and left. She yelled "thank you" and that was as deeply emotional as we got. I reckon neither of us wanted to sit there and cry or something. Why cry when you can laugh?

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

An Attitude Adjustment...

Here I sit and I gotta tell ya, it's more than a little humbling. It's funny, every time a bitter pill needs to be swallowed by someone in my family, God puts people in my path that without even trying, flip my world upside down. Got a beautiful email from a very sweet person. Carolyn, thanks so much for lifting my family in prayer. Your continued endeavors as a prayer warrior have been such a blessing. I couldn't be more grateful. Thank you so much my friend. And thank you to all my wonderful friends online who have been keeping me and my family in their thoughts and prayers. They're being answered.
Did two major things to get my mind back on straight and feel a whole lot better. First, I went and spent the weekend with the gal pal. That woman is so far out of my league, that it's just plain silly. She has absolutely no clue as to how beautiful she really is... She was there for me and listened to me on Saturday night while I fretted, expressed fear, and felt helpless. She was so incredible in that she didn't judge. She didn't say that it was all going to be okay. She just held me close, let me vent, and comforted me and gave me some advice and absolutely alleviated my fears and frustrations. She'll deny it and I'm glad she does, but I am so unworthy of that woman. She is simply amazing...
The second big thing I did was to go to my youngest sister's house yesterday and I got a chance to talk to her and see how she was really doing. She is a wacky one that kid sister of mine. She was very talkative and we sat and talked for over an hour. She asked some questions of me and I of her. She never cried once and even considering the subject matter, we spent a majority of the time laughing. Then her oldest son who is starting high school this week, brings over a neighbor friend and fellow freshman to the house. Now I'm not one to judge, but my nephew tells me that he is not a fan of this kid and confides to me that the only reason the kid is over is because he feels sorry for him. That the kid is really annoying and aggravating is a mild overstatement. The younger nephew is in 7th grade and is quite the witty one. He was telling that he was working on his Mathematics homework. Now this dear freshman (I think his name was Scott), who is in that delicate stage of reaching puberty (as in his voice is changing), decides to demonstrate his superiority over my younger nephew Bren. It went something like this:

Dyl: what are you doing?
Bren: Mathematics homework
Scott: You call it mathematics? At my school, we call it 'math'. (at this point, captain obvious begins to aspirate from a piece of pizza going down the wrong pipe).
Bren: At my school, we call that 'choking'...

My week has turned for the better.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The 'C' Word

From the "Here we go again" department:
Please say a prayer for my kid sister Angie. She was just diagnosed with breast cancer. I was in total shock when Terri told me. Lou and Terri are both doing sort of okay at the moment. Both are trying to deal with their own health issues as best as they know how. But to have this bomb dropped was very devastating to the family. Don't know how extensive or how far along the tumors are, but from what I can tell, there is hope for her. So, just another crap nugget for my family to deal with... But deal we will. Ang was a mess when she found out but seems to be grasping things a little more sternly than she did earlier in the week. It does put some wacky thoughts in your head though... hmmmmm.... My ol' man lost his battle to this disease, Lou has had it, Terri has it, now Ang.... how much longer till...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Way To Go, Eh?

Ahhhhhhh... Canada! (well, okay Windsor, which really doesn't count!)

When last your caped crusader inked an entry on this blog, I was concerned about getting in order:

- my birth certificate
- photos for my passport
- a letter or ticket of some sort to explain my reason for going to Windsor
- my application to get my passport and get it sent back in time for the trip to Canada.
- money to exchange for Canadian currency.

Well, it was an adventure to say the least. I called the bureau of vital statistics to find out info on getting my birth certificate. I go on my day off and head downtown to get it. I pay the fee and fill out the info and turn the form in to the lady behind the counter. She goes to pull my certificate up and tells me that my certificate is not legible enough for it to be acceptable for my passport application. I'm thinking 'oh wonderful'. Then she tells me that she has to call Columbus (state capital) to get a new done up copy of it and have it sent up... I tried to keep my sense of humor and let it go. I wanted to get this done all in a matter of about a week. So the new certificate comes in and I go to the passport place up in Detroit, three days before I needed my passport. I get there and I go to the wrong building. Then I go across the street to the proper place and go and register and go to the window where the kid was who was going to administer my oath. I take the oath and he fills out the information and then tells me that even though I plunked down the extra 60 bucks for expediting, my passport wouldn't be ready until the day that I NEEDED it to go over the border. So I took an extra half day off from work and drove back up to Detroit to pick up my passport, and then drive a few blocks further to the Tunnel to Canada. It has been almost a decade since the last time I went north of the 49th... The home of Poutine, Tim Horton's donuts, Canadian Tire (a department store with a very tiny tire section) and of course HOCKEY. Well, that night was for food and basketball. I ate gluten free pizza and boy was it good. I go to the game and my gal pal was watching the game from home because she wanted to see if she could see me on tv. I love that woman I tell ya... she is way more than I deserve. She texts me to tell me that she saw me in a close up shot (I was sitting behind the Western Ontario bench) and what was I doing? Texting her of course... I'm such a dork!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

ID Please...

I'm about to do something I've never done before in all my years of nuttiness. I'm going to go get my passport. Well, actually, I'm getting my passport card which is for Canada and Mexico land travel. I'm going to go over the border to Canada to watch an exhibition basketball game between the University of Windsor and the University of Kentucky. These days you need passport or passport card to travel between the U.S. and Canada so I'm going to blow over a hundred bucks for an ID card to travel 40 minutes from my house to go watch a basketball between two schools that doesn't actually count towards anything. Makes sense, don't ya think? I guess that will encourage me to go over the border more often like I used to when I was younger. But most of my free time, what little I have, is spent going to see the gal pal. But I'm looking forward to seeing how this process of obtaining this ID is going to play out. How long will it take? How much paper work is involved? It should be humorous, I hope!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Art of Breaking (the alarm) and Entering...

From the files of "Police Squad" (not)... Lt. Frank Drebin would be proud...

So, I go to see my gal pal cause I needed to and the fact that she never fails to amaze me, not only with her beauty, but with her gentleness, kindness, and (when dealing with me) PATIENCE! (ha-ha). I just flat out love that girl. And she loves me too! Always a huge bonus. Well, we go to church on Sunday morning because that is what we do. We also, like always, go down the street to get something to eat afterwards. So we go and eat and her parents are there in the back private room, eating with a large group of folks from Georgia who came up to teach Vacation Bible School for the week. So her parents were going to give them the two dollar tour of where they'd be teaching at. It was a hot, very hot, day and I was dripping with sweat already. So her dad tosses me the key to his house and says "here ya go". The wonderful thought of kicking back in the air conditioned comfort with my best girl made me smile. So the gal pal and I pull up and I help her into her wheelchair. I go to unlock the door, and hear the alarm go off. I stay calm and ask the gal pal if she knows the code to shut it off. She gives me the numbers and they turn out to be wrong. I hear the phone ring in the backround but don't know where it is. So I call her father on his cell and explain to him the noise he hears in the backround is me apparently breaking and entering because there is an alarm going off here!!! He calmly gives me the code to enter and sure enough, the alarm shuts off. Then he asks me "did the phone ring yet?" My heart begins to sink as I reply "uh, yes." He comes back with "oh, that was the security company, they're going to send the law out after you. It was nice knowing you Mik." Everyone loves a smartalec... So I figure I'll explain everything when they get there and hope they have a sense of humor. I get the gal pal out of her wheelchair and onto the sofa so she can get comfortable. I go to the bathroom and change out of my church clothes because they are soaked with sweat (gee I wonder why?) and I change into a t-shirt and shorts. Then the phone rings again. My heart starts to pound as I race towards it from the bathroom. I see the phone in the kitchen, setting in it's recharging station. I pick it up and hit the 'talk' button to answer it. It's only a split second later that I realized that once you lift the phone from the charger when it's ringing, that it will automatically answer. So when I hit the 'talk' button, I actually disconnected the call. I look on the caller ID and sure enough, I had just hung up on the boys in blue!!! I let out a curse word (sh**) and in the other room, the gal pal yells out "what did you just say?" and starts laughing at me. I called the number back on the phone and they answer and I just flowed like a volcano when lava spews out, explaining the situation and even the police person on the other end of the phone laughed at me. So FINALLY we got everything resolved and I was able to sit on the couch with the gal pal and I think I put her to sleep (also known as putting one of my all-time favorite movies on: "Rudy"... the movie about the Notre Dame football player). A little while later, her dad comes home and walks in and looks at me and as he's walking by, he chirps at me "Mik, are you still here?" and starts laughing at me. I told him if he ever thought I might consider a life of crime, this experience should put any such thought to rest. My gal pal had the biggest grin on her face. Probably because it involved something other than watch a movie that was putting her to sleep. Her inept, would be burglar just laid his head on her lap and knew it was all going to be fine when she just ran her fingers through his hair. Man, I really do love that girl!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Doesn't Seem Like Five...

Hmmmmm... had a nice birthday yesterday. Moving into official middle-age didn't seem like to big a deal until I tried to mess around with my sister's dog Lucy. I went over there yesterday cause they wanted to make a nice meal for me for the birthday. I enjoyed it and started getting playful with Lucy. I was in the backyard and thought about running around the yard with her. That's when it hit me... wholly crap I can't run like this dog can. I just smiled at her, left her in the back yard and walked back in to the air conditioning and just said the heck with it.
Well, it was five years ago today that my dad went to heaven. I miss him. He was a good guy and he loved his family. Part of me wishes he was still here. But the overall feeling I have is that I don't wish him back. I know he's in paradise and with my mom whom he loved like crazy. Why would I be so selfish and wish him back to here? It wouldn't be right. I know he's not suffering from the ravages of cancer anymore and he is enjoying life in eternity. That's a pretty cool thing and I won't want him back when he is free from pain and misery. But it's been five years and I know that he's at peace... I still miss him though... Still, thanks dad! I appreciate all that you did for me to show me how to live and to love. Thank you ol' man... you're the best! I love you a ton!

Friday, July 09, 2010

What's In A Name?.... If You're Seven!

From the 'captain kangaroo meets bart simpson' dept:

Okay, time for your inner, immature, seven year-old to stand out and shine... The following is excerpted from from the children's book "the adventures of captain underpants" and "perilous plot of professor poopy pants" by Dave Pilkey. In this story, the professor (a bad guy) forces everyone to assume a new name. So, with that little nugget in mind, here's a little excercise in useless stupidity. Find your capt. underpants/prof. poopy pants new name... it's easy, and cheesy and downright silly. But hey, I have been busier than all getout and I needed to put out a new entry for my blog. I was hard up for here's the directions: from the following list of silly names, choose yours based on three letters of your entire name. Here's how you come up with your silly name...

Step one: Use the third letter of your first name to determine your new silly first name...

A= Snickle B= Doombah C= Goober D= Cheesy E= Crusty

F= Greasy G= Dumbo H= Farcus I= Dorky J= Doofus K= Funky

L= Boobie M= Sleezy N= Sloopy O= Fluffy P= Slinky Q= Slimy

R= Dorfus S= Snooty T= Tootsie U= Dipsy V= Sneezy

W= Liver X= Skippy Y= Dinky Z= Zippy

Now, Step Two: Use the second letter of your last name to determine the first part of your new last name...

A= Dippin' B= Feather C= Batty D= Burger E= Chicken

F= Barffy G= Lizard H= Waffle I= Farkle J= Monkey K= Flippin'

L= Frickin' M= Bubble N= Rhino O= Cat P= Hamster Q= Buckle

R= Gizzard S= Lickin' T= Snickle U= Chuckle V= Pickle

W= Hubble X= Dingle Y= Gorilla Z= Girdle

Finally, the last part... Use the third letter of your last name to create the second part of your new silly last name.

A= Butt B= Boob C= Face D= Nose E= Hump F= Breath

G= Pants H= Shorts I= Lips J= Honker K= Head L= Tush

M= Chunks N= Dunkin' O= Brains P= Bisquits Q= Toes

R= Doodle S= Fanny T= Sniffer U= Sprinkles V= Frack

W= Squirt X= Humperdinck Y= Chicken Z= Juice

And presto! you have a new silly name... And I have updated my blog. I hope to hear what your silly names are... For the record, my silly new name is Funky Catdunkin'...

Monday, June 28, 2010

Gone Fishing without a pole...

I needed to get away for a few days and lo and behold my gal pal and her family were vacationing in Tennessee near the Smoky Mountains. I really needed to get away and just relax. So I cruised down there and proceeded to have a blast with her and got to relax and take in the beautiful scenery. I stayed at a nearby motel about 15 minutes from the lake they were staying at and hung out during the day and evening. My goodness, the view was breath-taking. In fact, the gal pal and family are talking about going back next year. Hey, I'm up for it....
Meanwhile, Lou is having a birthday and in a couple of days, my great-nephew is also having a birthday. He's chalking up his first one. Guess who'll get more spoiled and get more gifts? hahaha...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Stormin' Round Two...

Wow... more fun and frivolity weather wise. Last night we had funnel clouds pass over our community and more high wind damage to the west of us. But I'm grateful that we didn't get a direct hit here. It was weird though because the line of storms that were supposed to pass over us, stalled and waited like they were taking a number to hit our area. It had the weather guys on tv a bit perplexed. A town out west of us called Edgerton got nailed this time. Edgerton is right on the Ohio-Indiana border and they had some significant damage to their fire station and their townhall was destroyed. There was some areas that got hit with high winds, lightning, and heavy rain. But fortunately, most of the damage was in rual areas and not near heavy populated areas. As per usual, there were trees knocked down and a few powerlines with electricity knocked out for a while, but the folks will rebuild and bounce back like they always seem to do...

Thursday, June 17, 2010

And When They Rock.... THEY ROCK!!

Boy, what a night it was...
I get out of work at five to head over to where the "Game for Giving" charity basketball game was to be played, at Genoa high school. In my head I keep thinking "don't freak out Mik, you're used to getting rosters right before start time and still manage to pull it off. Well, I get there and walk in to find that the ABC affiliate is doing their newscast from there. Cool. But it doesn't help with the fact that I have no rosters to familiarize myself with. And on top of that, I don't know if I'm going to get roster of the faculty and staff that are playing the tv station folks in this basketball game. Well, the Good Lord was with me and I decided to stop being to anal about the whole thing. We had two computers up and running to do the video broadcast online and the other to record it for broadcast on tv later. About 40 minutes before tipoff, the newer computer gives us the BSOD (the Blue Screen Of Death)... Which meant it was fried. Oh perfect! could this not get any better? Ugh. So we decide to take our chances (translated to "pray that it works") and ran everything off of ONE computer. Well, for the most part it worked and we were up and running. Then, I knew it was going to be a good night for us when our polo shirts with the TSR logo came in before the game. Changed into those and as they were announcing the starting line-ups (which we finally got at 8 minutes before tipoff), and when they announced the faculty team, the crowd gave it up for all three schools that were represented on the team. Genoa (the host) got a big response. Delta (who saw some nasty damage to some homes in their area) got some loud cheers. But the biggest response was for the Lake high school staff on the roster. People there not only lost their homes and their high school, but 6 lives were lost there. The Lake contingent got a huge standing ovation that lasted almost 2 minutes. It was very moving. And as the news anchor from the station introduced everyone, they even introduced us at TSR and we got a big ovation from the appreciative (not to mention overflow) crowd there. There were so many people that came out that they had to open the auditorium next door to show our broadcast on closed circuit to accomadate the over flow crowd. The game wasn't too bad. The news anchors were pretty darn good if I do say so myself. They were kicking butt however the teachers kept coming back. At halftime it was very emotional and moving. They had a bunch of little contests and stuff. But then they had the fire fighters and rescue people from Lake Township and Millbury come out to center court to take pictures to commemorate the event. The whole crowd rose as one to give them a 4 minute standing ovation. Tears were flowing from so many people. Some of the people who had lost their homes were in attendance, just to get away from everything for a couple of hours and have some fun. My co-host for the event Steve Taylor put it best when he said "with this, now some of the healing can begin." To top off the night, a lady won the 50-50 raffle and her share of it was one thousand and seven hundred dollars. After the game, she brought it back and asked that it be given to a family that was at the game that had lost everything. The place went beserk and tears were flowing freely from the family that received that money, and the person who gave it, and just about everyone else in the place. It really re-affirmed my belief in the human spirit. That despite all the negatives, that people at their core, are generally good. It was an event such as this that proved that these communities will rally around each other when things get tough and no matter how difficult, they will endure. I walked out of the gym into the hallway and walked over to the bake sale table and bought a big plate of chocolate and vanilla gooey cookies and purposely paid nearly double what they were selling for and took them back to the TSR crew to enjoy. I even had a bite of one despite my diabetes. It was an incredible evening this area of tiny hick towns pulled together and raised over forty thousand dollars to help these families with some of the things they need to start over. God gets the credit in this one. Ain't no doubt about it.

Monday, June 14, 2010

For Those About To Rock... We Salute You...

Thanks to all who sent their best wishes over what was a pretty crappy week last week in north west Ohio. People have been coming in droves to help out those who lost everything. Well I guess everything but their lives. And another person lost his life over the weekend. He couldn't hold on anymore and succumbed to his injuries. The real sad part is that he was the third from his family to perish from the tornado. He was 37 years old. His wife and 3 year old son were killed that night in the storm. The lone survivor is the 7 year old daughter. Of course at church on Sunday, the question was asked "why?"... and of course there are no answers. But my belief is that God has His reasons and I'm not privy to them. Not much I can do about that. But I can do something in the way I respond to those who need help. So of course that also makes me a little nervous. Our local ABC-TV affiliate is putting together a charity basketball game at a local area high school just down the road from where Lake High School was destroyed. The money raised from this game will go towards tornado victims relief. The scary part that makes me nervous? I am (along with a buddy of mine) are going to be the broadcasters doing the game for the station. Now normally, I'd be so geeked because I'm doing something to help out with the relief effort and would consider this a high honor to be a part of something so special. But the problem is that I won't know the lineups or the rosters till about an hour before tip-off. If that early. And to appear on tv on the our local ABC affiliate... and not know the names of everyone involved? Wholly smokes! My biggest concern (read: worry) is that I won't get a handle on all of the names of the people that are participating in this thing. So if you're totally bored and want to watch me go down in flames and have a laugh, you can watch the game online beginning at 7 pm US eastern time tonight (Tuesday June 15th) as our little goofy station Toledo Sports Radio will be providing live tv online coverage. If you have a high speed connection, feel free to stop by and see some mediocre to average basketball for a very good cause. And listen to me stutter and babble my way through it all... ugh... lol...

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Strange Daze...

Over the last few days, I've seen a couple of small towns where I live get leveled from tornadoes. I've seen lives devastated, homes and businesses ruined. And to top it off today at work, our former county auditor decides to take a flying leap from the fifth level of the parking garage and end it all. Why did he have to pick my place of employment?? To quote the profound theologian Slim Pickens (he of "Blazing Saddles" fame)... "What in the wide, wide world of sports is going on around here???" I'm sitting here typing this out, still in a bit of shock over everything that's transpired over the last 72 hours. Its just been insane. Just freaking nuts! I'm trying to find the words to convey what I'm feeling right now, but I just can't seem to find them. You can go on different news websites to see the destruction from the tornadoes that came through my neck of the woods. Some only a couple of miles from me. But until you see it first hand, video doesn't begin to do it justice. It looked like a dang bomb went off and now resembles a war zone. In Lake Township, it leveled the police station and destroyed the high school only 14 hours before graduation commencement was to take place there. They ended up holding the graduation tonight at a local junior college. The bad part of that was that of the folks killed, one of them happened to be the father of the valedictorian. I'm very blessed that my small town was spared. Only very minor damage to some fencing. A small silver lining is that I am not surprised at the response of the people to those horrible storms. Trying to pick up the pieces... these people just sprang into action. That is what is so good about small town folks in middle America. People who had just seen their lives forever changed in a matter of seconds, were out there in the blinding rain, and wind... not to mention darkness (this happened at about 11pm on Saturday night and again at 3am Sunday morning) looking for their neighbors to see if they were still alive or if they needed to be rescued. People helping people. They will persevere... That's what it's all about.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

A View From The Booth... er... Table

Here's a bizarre day off for you...
I haven't been out and about for a while because of my voice deciding to take a vacation without me. A touch of strep throat is never good from any standpoint. For a guy who broadcasts sports, it's a pain in the, throat. So I've been on the shelf for a few days and have had to rest my vocal chords with no talking to ANYONE... I've stayed cooped up in my house and have been trying not to go stir crazy. So I decided that today I was going to go out and eat somewhere. I didn't know where, but I was determined to enjoy going outside and eating like a moose.
So I hit the road and driving up and down the road with multiple choices but nothing hit me as really good. Finally, I settled on eating at a Chinese buffet... all you can eat..... mmmmmmmm... Mik likes that! Mik likes that a lot!! mmmmmmmmmm... So I go inside the Chinese restaurant and everything seemed to be normal when I first walked in. But after that, everything I was expecting went out the window but I was going to enjoy my meal. So I am seated by a pretty little girl who didn't speak english well. She was mexican and when she asked me if I wanted to be seated in a booth and I said "sure" and she promptly seats me at a table instead. No big deal. Then my waitress asks me what I'd like to drink and I say a diet soda please. She brings it to me while I'm helping myself to the peanut chicken and other high fat delicacies that looked soooooo good. I never see her again. Now they had chicken wings (a personal weakness) and pizza... I know I have a couple slices when I'm doing my online radio show. For some strange reason, I have an aversion to chicken wings and pizza from chinese buffets... I don't know why. I just never touch them. I tried some korean chicken, and sweet n sour, plus my personal favorites, general tsao and pepper steak. Oh was it good. Handling the refills for me was a late teen or early 20-something mexican kid whose english wasn't the best but he was wearing his Jimi Hendrix t-shirt and was grooving it in his own "Purple Haze" Now you might think I find it odd that a mexican family is running a chinese restaurant. I don't find it odd at all actually. I'm just painting the picture here... to give you the idea of how out of sorts I was at the time. The only odd time I had in this buffet place was watching an elderly couple who were a couple of tables away from me in a booth. They went up to load up on food and they appeared to be flirting with each other. I couldn't be sure because it was all done in sign language. I know just enough sign language to understand that I really don't know that much sign language. But they had such loving looks on their faces. When I watched them for a brief moment as they dined, I realized that you're never too old to love and be happy. The oriental music playing overhead seemed harmless enough. Until I realized that although it was an oriental instument playing, the song was a familiar hard rock tune from many years ago. My first thought: "alright man, where is that kid in the Jimi Hendrix t-shirt?"

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Dollars to Donuts...

how's this for a situation?...
I go into work at the wee hours to do my job and at about 7:30 in the morning, I opt to head to our cafeteria for some breakfast and to get some treats for my co-workers. Now being a diabetic, I know I can't eat what I buy for the folks I work with. I never let that bother me. It's no big deal for me to scoop up some big coffee rolls or donuts or lemon bars... whatever the treat may be. I usually grab for myself some crap like eggs, fruit or something of that ilk. Not as good as what they eat, but then again, I have this thing about wanting to live. I don't want to check out anytime soon so I best not go near the donuts, bagels, or any sweets. Bummer I know, but hey, I got over my passion for italian food and now have learned to live without spaghetti or a rigatoni or the other delectable pastas that end in "I"... sigh... But I do miss them all... it sucks to be a diabetic. Anyway, so I get myself some runny eggs and a terribly bruised Fiji apple and a bottled water. The eggs were mixed with some chopped sausage. It whizzed big time. Meanwhile my co-workers were treated to Cinnamon rolls gobs of frosting. Lemon Bars, Macademia Nut cookies and Banana Nutbread Muffins. And gormet coffee to boot. So I got all of this food on a tray piled high and drawing the most bizarre looks from people as I walk by. I could only imagine the thought that prevailed most was "geez you moose, no wonder you're a freakin' diabetic!"... So to the masses outside of my department, I'm probably a moose for eating cakes, rolls, donuts and cookies. And I sit down to eat my runny eggs and bruised up apple and shake my head and yell at the top of my voice.... CAFETERIA FOOD SUCKS....

Friday, May 14, 2010

In the Tall Grass

I am such a dork!
I finally BORROWED a lawn mower and cut my grass. I guess I should give a little backround. I've gone through and still have THREE lawn mowers (and none of them work). They are now all worthless. It's been raining for the last three weeks in near biblical proportions and I'm not saying I should build an ark or anything, but I have been looking at animals and thinking of them in but I digress. Anyway, back to the lawn. I went through three, YES, THREE of those stinking things since I put them away late last fall/early winter. I broke them out hoping to get the lawn (uh, okay, actually more weeds than grass) cut. But none of them had oil in them and I didn't know that till it was too late. It's not like I have a gigantic yard or anything. Add to that all of the rain we've gotten so far this spring, and it has the makings of some ridiculously high grass. As I looked out over the lawn, I started to have strange visions of my childhood when I watched "Hee Haw" on television. I remember the people in the corn fields that would tell real corn ball jokes. A much more innocent time to be sure. But then they would dip back into the field and you couldn't see them. Looking out over my lawn, I felt something similar to those "Hee Haw" moments. I was actually feeling more like Clark W. Griswold in the "Vacation" movies but after going through THREE (yes, three) lawn mowers, I humbly borrowed one and mowed the lawn and felt such relief. Until I looked back out at the lawn and it looked like it could use a trim. THAT is how long the grass got. So I ran the lawn mower over it again, returned the lawn mower, and of course, it started to rain. And it rained for two days. At least it wasn't forty... I looked out at the grass this morning and of course, it needs to be cut.... AAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Thanks Ernie...

As I move on everyday in this journey of mine, I find the highs and lows and try to manage as I go... No big surprise as most all of you try to do the same thing. And when you reach a certain age, you tend to spend just a wee bit of time looking back and reminiscing about happy times in the past. Usually, that involves childhood. At least that is what I do. A huge part of my childhood involved a transistor radio and hockey and baseball games. That was my ticket out from my house of blah that I painted for myself. We didn't have cable tv in my neighborhood until I was an adult. So all we had was about four or five channels on tv and whatever was on radio. Being a big sports fan, I loved listening to sports on the radio. It helped passed the time and it was such an important part of me back then. So it was with such sadness when I saw on tv that one of the most important voices of my childhood had passed away. Ernie Harwell was 92 years old but a VERY spry 92... The cancer in his bile duct took him from here but the memories of him calling Detroit Tigers baseball for 42 of his 55 year broadcast career will always be permanently etched in my head and my heart. The Georgia born but MADE in Detroit icon started his career in a weird way. Back in 1948, the Brooklyn Dodgers announcer fell ill, so their owner traded a minor league catcher to the minor league Atlanta Crackers for their announcer... Ernie Harwell! Ernie did short stints for Brooklyn, the old NY Giants, and then Baltimore, but finally found a home in the Motor City. Detroit and Ernie Harwell was a perfect match. My childhood was surviveable because I got to listen to Ernie Harwell and Paul Carey (a vastly underappreciated announcer in his own right) every day and it made sports such a hoot. I remember sitting on the porch with my ol' man and we'd have 760 WJR radio tuned in and Ernie and Paul would paint such a glorious picture of what was good about the world. It gave a hopeless kid from a rust-belt neighborhood a reason to look forward. It was a very important part of my childhood and now that such a vibrant part of it is gone, the world seems a little darker. But at least I'm glad that I was privelaged to have grown up (no matter how rough) and able to listen to a guy who helped shaped my view not only of sports, but a little bit of life too. Thanks Ern, you've done so much for so many. Now Heaven has their announcer... and he has a Southern accent!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

For Everything Else, There's Mastercard...

Okay... When in doubt, I needed to get some time with the boss...

Time spent on the road driving in one day: 14 hours

Sleep I got over two days during that time: less than 6

The look on her face when I showed up after not much sleep: PRICELESS!!!
P.S. I haven't spent much time with her... so I pulled a marathon road trip so we could spend all of a whopping four hours together. Four... Why you ask? BECAUSE SHE IS WORTH IT...

Saturday, April 17, 2010

An Occasional Setback...

Terri's in the hospital again as the chemo she had been on before this latest one (that she is allergic to) had done damage to her body and she was feeling like crap. Well, she discovered also that this chemo treatment every three weeks is dehydrating her so bad that it's hurting her kidneys. So when she gets out of the hospital, she's going to have IV therapy at home and see if that works. She's got chemo again on monday. I don't know how she does it. I really don't. She still has her days that she just wants to quit, but overcomes those times a whole lot stronger than I ever could.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

When I Need A Reminder...

It goes without saying that behind a semi-decent guy, there's usually a great and awesome woman... For me, I have a great one who doesn't see me much. I'm usually tired and winding down from a busy day when I see her or spend any time with her. She has endured my crankiness, all the pressure i've been under as of late. And she has to put up with my sports schedule and broadcasting games when I could be spending more time with her. But she endures it all and is always encouraging me to do what I love and go for my dreams. I can honestly thank the Good Lord for her because as sure as you're reading this, I can tell you that I absolutely shutter to think what my life would be like without her in it. My life would be an absolute disaster...Sometimes, I need to remind myself that no matter how crappy life can get, I've got a lot that I have to be thankful for. She is a real reminder of just what is right with this world. If for no other reason, for putting up with a dork like me...

Saturday, April 03, 2010

I'll Be Home For Easter....

Well, first things first. Happy Easter everyone. He has risen!
The last few weeks have been like Good Friday... Tough, painful, overall pretty lousy. But we endure. And we keep our faith... and before you know it, Sunday comes and He rose. And for me, things are improving, and I feel joy, gratitude, and somewhere in all the chaos, I feel a little bit of peace. Don't know why. But I know that things will work themselves out. He heard my prayers. He heard the prayers of the folks here that read this goofy little part of the world that is me. I can never thank Him enough. I can't thank you folks enough for you prayers. Both of the sisters are back home. Terri is weak, but wants to cook for Easter Sunday. Typical Terri. Lou just got home on Good Friday. Still a little confused, but nowhere near what she experienced while in the hospital. She is so happy to be home. Me, I'm ready to collapse, but i'm glad that we're here to celebrate some wonderful things. He has Risen. My eyes are heavy as I type this, but I wanted to update and express some gratitude because even when things are tough like on Good Friday, we gotta remember that Sunday is coming... Oh and by the way, did I mention: HE HAS RISEN!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Stress? Never Heard Of It...

I am soooooooo tired.
Lou is starting to get back to her old self... FINALLY! She was moved to the rehabilitation unit which basically is an extended care facility. But for her, it's not permanent. Thank the Lord. In fact, she has been getting real antsy cause she wants to go home. I went and visited her and all she could talk about was that she wanted to get out of there. The problem is that she needs care right now 24/7 and the home visiting nurse is only for part of the daytime. So she needs to strengthen up in physical rehab and that will give Terri a break too as she has to have chemo that she's allergic to and she'll be down for a while. It's been a pretty heavy duty stressful time for our family but life goes on. I have to get my poop in a group cause my car is acting up a bit and needs work and it's just a bunch of little things right now that are making life challenging. But I'm not giving in to the desire to have a pity party. Life can whiz sometimes but I knew that there would be times like this. But like the Good Book says... "Be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world..."

Friday, March 19, 2010

No Luck Of The Irish...

Appreciate the kind prayers for Lou and Terri. Terri is hanging in there like always. Lou has had a rough road to travel. She was in the ICU and even though she had head trauma, she was doing decent. Then she was transferred out of ICU and when she got nauseous, the doctor ordered a med that we told them NOT to give her as it makes her confused and disoriented. They gave her the med and sure enough, she got all disoriented and didn't know who we were. I was not happy and Terri, even in her condition, about blew a head gasket. We got the med stopped and Lou is very slowly starting to remember things but is still quite out of it. She is miserable and can't focus on anything and is getting very frustrated. So that is where things stand with that situation. But in a moment that told me that maybe she's doing a little bit better, she had a vintage Lou "moment".
She is in a semi-private room (which means NO privacy) and her roommate is a little 96 year old woman who is all of 4 foot 8. Lou (who is a bilateral amputee- just below her knees) is watching as the woman (who is extremely hard of hearing) is helped to the bathroom. She comes back out, and Lou looks at me and says "y'know what? I bet if I could stand on my stumps, I'd still be taller than her..." I buried my head and nearly convulsed with laughter. My big ol' body was shaking like Jello. That's when I knew I had hope for my sister...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Stress? What's Stress?

Sometimes I wonder....

I know that there is a reason for everything. But my family has had better weeks. Terri had to go get chemo (the chemo that she's allergic to. But it's the only one that works on her) and they gave it to her at half strength. She got sick and they wanted to stop but she told them to keep administering it to her. It took them NINE HOURS to get the full dose into her. Her doctor told her "you know what Terri? I wouldn't blame you if you said you wanted stop doing this anymore." Apparently this doctor doesn't know her very well. I got to feeling under the weather with a fever and general state of dizziness. Thought it might be my sugar, but it was fever and after I hit the Tylenol, I felt better once it popped. But it came back twice and it's gone for now but I don't know what the heck is going on. Then to top it off, Lou had an accident. The ambulette came to pick her up and take her to dialysis. Well, they have to put her wheelchair on a metal riser that lifts her up from the ground into the ambulette. I don't know how, but her safety belt that was supposed to be fastened came loose and she and her chair rolled off from the riser and she ended up falling back, hitting her head something fierce, and ending up in the neuro intensive care unit. Her CT came back negative so they think she'll be okay but there's a little blood at the base of her skull so she's going to be out for a while. It really hit me like a sucker punch because of all the things that I figure that could happen to her, this was the LAST thing I would've figured. It's times like this I still wish I drank because boy I could use a stiff belt right about now...

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Pickin' and Grinnin' (my apologies to Hee Haw)

Okay, so when last I wrote on these pages... I was whinning about the Olympics and who to root for... I didn't mind Canada winning the hockey gold medal even though I wanted the States to win. Now looking back, it was an odd Olympics marred by tragedy, perseverance, inspiration, and hope. The poor Georgian national who bought it on the luge track before the games officially opened. That really could've brought things to a screeching halt. But they kept going. One of the two biggest stories to touch my heart was watching the story unfold of JoAnnie Rochette. How she endured the loss of her mom and had the skate of her life two days later. That was unbelievable. That, to me, exemplified the Olympic spirit. I just felt so sorry for her and her father. But the way she gutted through that pain with such a great performance, she won everyone's hearts over. That and the gold medal hockey game between the US and Canada... People who weren't hockey fans watched that and marveled how great that game was. I have to agree. They really put on a show that will also leave a huge mark on the games.
Okay so we got the Oscars coming up tomorrow night. Normally, I'm not one to be the least bit concerned about another self-congratulatory awards show. I don't know... I guess I like making picks and since the football season is over, I'm stuck with the Oscars... I'm usually wrong with the picks I make and who the actual winners are, so I'm picking who my personal favorites were and then who I think will actually win... Just the top five awards...

Best Supporting Actor

My Pick: Stanley Tucci (The Lovely Bones)
Oscar Pick: Matt Damon (Invictus)

Best Supporting Actress

My Pick: Mo'Nique (Precious)
Oscar Pick: Mo'Nique

Best Actor

My Pick: Morgan Freeman (Invictus)
Oscar Pick: Jeff Bridges (Crazy Heat)

Best Actress

My Pick: Sandra Bullock (The Blind Side)
Oscar Pick: Meryl Streep (Julie & Julia)

Best Picture

My Pick: The Blind Side
Oscar Pick: Avatar

Friday, February 19, 2010

Gold Silver and Bronze

Ahhhh the road to the Olympics...

I've always preferred the winter Olympics to the summer games. Mainly because I live in the north and love winter sports. Obviously, ice hockey is my biggest passion as far as sports go. And right now I am enjoying the heck out of the games in Vancouver. Now granted lots of things have gone wrong there for the folks putting on the events. Someone dying on opening day is not what the officials had in mind and on a lighter note, we won't even mention the weather. But there's just something about this thing that we watch every four years that just gets me feeling like a kid again. Okay, maybe not to the point of picking my nose and wetting my pants again. I was regressing to my preteen youth, not as a But I will never forget as long as I live, the Miracle on Ice at Lake Placid in '80... I had never cried watching a sporting event until then. When we beat the Soviets in the semis and turned the world upside down in winning the gold two days later. Yeah that was amazing. It's still burned in my memory banks and all these years later, I still get jazzed up thinking or talking about it. I say that because it presents a dilemma for me with this Olympic games. My very favorite hockey players from the NHL that are playing in this tournament are mostly playing for either Canada or Sweden. Most of the guys from my country's team are guys I have spent most of my time rooting against whilst they played in the NHL regular season. How can I shut down my lack of enthusiasm for them and become their biggest fan for what amounts to a less than two week tournament, only to go back to rooting against them afterwards? I feel like I'm not really cheering for them... I'm only cheering for some laundry. I want to cheer for my country... I really do... But none of the players I admire, respect or like play for Team USA... what's a hockey guy to do? I guess I'll just watch curling.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

It's Beginning To Look Alot Like Christmas...

I tunneled my way out of my door and looked at my car and turned around and went back inside and just sat there and watched the snow keep coming down and down... I think the only way I could make it to work right now is to go by sled dog... Ididarod training anyone?

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Only In Michigan

I'm NOT trying to sound morbid here. But I got a true story told to me by one of my best friends who lives over in Pittsburgh and I haven't seen him in about 4 or 5 years. The hockey team had a game over there so I made a side trip to go see him and his wife. In the midst of his and my catching up, he tells that his father (whom he hadn't had a relationship with for years), passed away late last year. He didn't seem too down about it at all. So I didn't really press the issue. But he did go to the funeral back in northern Michigan. He then proceeded to tell me a story that was nothing short of BIZARRE. I don't have enough space here to list all the oddities that happened at this service. But it involved everything from motorcycle gangs (he didn't like or own motorcycles), to during the service, someone actually... I kid you not... actually going up (as part of the service) and channeling the spirit (and voice) of the deceased's dog. I'm NOT KIDDING! It took every ounce of energy within my being to look at my buddy with something resembling empathy (he still had a look of bewilderment on his face)... He looked at me and laughed at the thought of a girl going up and reading letter in the voice of a dog. I dang near wet my pants and did everything I could to not shake like jello. I'm not one to be judgemental, but when they take the coffin out to the hearse after the service was over and leave it in the hearse (unlocked) and go downstairs to the church basement to eat BEFORE they go out to the cemetery for burial... yes, it was that, uh, um, odd. So my head started thinking in the wrong direction. I didn't want to think about it, but I gave into temptation and had to ask: What is the strangest funeral story you've ever heard? On second thought, maybe I'll just say have a nice week and I'll try to figure out a more interesting subject to write about next week... I'm such a dork!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Rambling Thoughts on a Wednesday Night...

Hey folks
Just updating on what's been going on here in my world. Here's the update: (in no particular order)

-Lucas is fine. He has feeling in his arm again.
-Terri is hanging on. She is still gutting it out with the chemo that she's allergic to. She's gutsy.
-Lou is doing better now. She had a cardiac cath done and her circulation appears to be good.
-My gal pal loves me more than ever.
-I still love her MORE...
-I'm stressed to the hilt, but I'm happy and I know that I'll survive.
-I've been thinking about my love walk and I know that I need to work on that.
-It's 10:30pm as I type this and I'm sleepy as all heck... when did I get old?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Tis the Season???

Boy, talk about being tested...
In the last month I've seen three friends pass away, one a very dear family friend and two that I knew from working with them. It sucks, but I'm doing alright with it. Terri is still battling with her stuff and she texted me last night when I asked how she was doing: "I'm good but please pray for my friend who had to be induced into a coma because she was having seizures non-stop. She was in remission but the cancer returned and spread to her brain." Oh boy... but that's Terri for you... even though she's got her own stuff to deal with, she's always thinking of others. So I told her that I would definetely be praying for her and her friend.
Just got back from a lousy weekend in Iowa. We lost both games we played out there but that wasn't even on my radar. One of the players, Lucas, was injured in the hockey game on Saturday and was laid out on the ice and wasn't moving. The trainer asked him if he was alright but he couldn't feel anything in his extremeties. The trainer pinched his hand hard and Lucas didn't feel a thing. So they called 911 and immobilized him, the EMT's came and put him on a stretcher. My heart sank with worry as I knew his family down in Florida was listening to the game. But the father of one of the other players had made the trip to Iowa with us and he stayed with Lucas the whole time. He stayed on his cell the whole time with Lucas' dad. One of the players who didn't dress for the game due to injury went over to Lucas as he was being carted off the ice to offer words of encouragement. Willy later came over to me during the broadcast and said that Lucas was cracking jokes to try and calm everyone down. After the game, we sent the players back to the hotel and our team bus driver carted the coaching staff and yours truly over the hospital not knowing what to expect. I feared the worst, but I prayed. Boy did I pray. And my prayer was answered, thank the Good Lord. All feeling returned for Lucas in his extremeties with the exception of his left arm feeling very sore, he was alright. I exchanged emails with his dad the next day and he told me that he was grateful for being kept in the loop via cell phone during the whole ordeal and that talking to Lucas really calmed him down. Lucas was released from the ER a couple of hours after the game and we ordered a pizza for him and everyone went back to the hotel with a big sigh of relief. I got back to my room, grabbed a bite of pizza, and gave thanks to God for Lucas' health, and then went to sleep. I interviewed Lucas on the air the next day during the game and I got hit with a ton of email from listeners thanking me for that because they were worried. He cracked a couple of jokes to try and keep things loose and I told him how good it was to see him. He smiled and said "yeah, I'm really glad I'm here to see you too." Now that I think about it, that about sums up what I'm feeling overall these days. I'm glad I'm here and I'm going to continue to pray for family and loved ones and that I endure...Because I know that this stuff too shall pass...

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

A Weird Day (out) of Sorts...

Just wanted to update on Terri... she underwent her first chemo treatment for her lungs and even though she is allergic to it, she gutted it out and went through it. She sent me a note afterwards to describe it: "It wasn't as bad as we thought. I only had one episode where I had a tight chest and trouble breathing. but I told them I wanted to keep going. The nurse told me that with each cycle, the chances for a reaction increases... But I wouldn't quit."
If you really want to know about Terri... that last sentence pretty much says it all... "I have faith Mickey" she continued. "I'm in a lot of pain and I'm weak and tired and got sick only once, but I know I can do this."

What more do I need to say? I think she said it all... She is an inspiration.

It seems only weird that today was the anniversary of my mom's passing. I was just a kid when she passed. I feel like I know less about her as I get older, but I know she had a hard and rough life. I'm glad she's in paradise. I know her and my dad are together up there. I believe that with all that I am. I know they are happy. I know they are complete up there. I don't know... right now with everything going on, I don't feel worry. I'm stressed out but I'm not wigging out on anyone or anything. But even though this is a tough time right now, I feel a sense of peace. More accurately, I'm choosing peace over pain. And I feel like God has calmed me down and is giving me the courage to stand on faith. To believe when to others, there might not seem like a reason to believe. I'm good with that...

Monday, January 04, 2010


Since we've now barely tipped our toes into the sea of 2010, I was wondering what do you have as your resolution for the new year? Me, I'm a creature of habit so in addition to trying to try and do something, I'm going to admit to trying to do something different. My sugar has been off because of my constant travelling and staying in hotel rooms and eating lousy food at all hours... I got a juicer for Christmas and my new year's resolution is to try and use it at least once a day to replace pigging out at a meal. It won't be easy but I want to try something to get back to healthier choices. As much as I may hate eating That's my new year's resolution... What about yours?