Saturday, January 27, 2007

Train, Train Go Away.

On my way to the State Fairgrounds for the Matt Talbot Kitchen and AFL scholarship fund raiser, Ales and Auction, I was detained by a train for about four minutes. What topped it off was that, as the first train heading East passed the intersection, another train heading West started crossing the intersection. What a fine coincidence.

As for the Ales and Auction. It was better than last year's, while missing New Belgium Brewery. I'm sold on Odell Brewing Co. from Ft. Collins, CO. I've had their Levity and Easy Street before and tonight I had their Imperial Stout. Each brewery represented chose a beer for a "best in show" fan voting. Odell's Imperial Stout was my favorite.

There were two others, of the 19 I tried, that I really liked. The Gottberg Brewpub in Columbus, NE had a Bugeater Brown which was fine, but their hit for me was the "Fire in the Hole!" Rauchbier that didn't have much of a bouquet, but tasted like barbecue, a nice roasted/grilled/smoked flavor that I'm supposing came from its beechwood barrel aging. Upstream Brewing Co. out of Omaha has started attending these Lincoln tasting events, and they're great overall. What I enjoyed from them tonight was an espresso stout, a great blend of both flavors.



At January 29, 2007 1:16 PM, Blogger Wee Katie said...

Wow, I've never wanted to try beer before, but now I do. When I come visit next, can you make me steak and recommend a beer? And when are you coming up?


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Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Last night I went to El Laberinto del Fauno (Pan's Labyrinth). I give it 3 stars outta 5. I agree with the R rating. It isn't for the squeamish (Wendy, avoid this movie, or at least, close your eyes for Ofelia's second task.) Based on the previews, I was a bit concerned that the film was going to be an Alice in Wonderland on acid, which is saying quite a bit. However, at the end I thought that I could have used more of the fantasy aspects, not that the reality was too much. Technically (as far as my amateur opinion goes), I thought the film was very well made, good sound track, special effects, editing, set design. The actors were in fine form as well. Ofelia was a better actress than Olive (of Little Miss Sunshine fame) at the same portrayed age, though Ofelia is two years older in real life, 12 to 10. Sergi Lopez and Maribel Verdu (lost?) were great previously in Dirty Pretty Things and Y Tu Mama Tambien, respectively, and are maybe even better here.

Work was not as great today as yesterday. I place the blame for this on a few things: going to bed later, annoying customers, and a computer quirk that compromised a six hundred dollar order. Getting home today, I self-medicated with a beer with my steak, then a nightcap of a gin and champagne cocktail. So I'm doing better now.

My day started out very well though. I switched from sports talk on the AM to FM, starting at the left side of the "dial" with the community radio station KZUM. Just my luck, I caught the chorus of Ring of Fire, but not just any Ring of Fire, a polka Ring of Fire, but not just any polka Ring of Fire, a Spanish polka Ring of Fire. So that was great. It was followed up by a nice quartet doing King of the Road.

That is my life. Movies, Music, and Mood Elevators.

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At January 24, 2007 11:22 PM, Blogger Cerise said...

I saw the trailer for Pan's Labyrinth quite a while ago, and had forgotten it. I didn't recall any indications of squeamish material, though, so I'm glad for your review... I guess so that I can avoid it. Sigh.


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Sunday, January 21, 2007

Pride and Joy of Illinois

So my Bears won today 39-14. This means they get to be part of the Superbowl in Miami on the Fourth of February. Their head coach Lovie Smith is the first black head coach to be in the Superbowl, beating his former boss and friend Tony Dungy by a few hours. This means there will be two weeks of coverage by media. This is generally a bad thing. Everyone will know that Bob Sanders, safety for the Colts, was born Demond Sanders and asked his mother to switch to something easier. We'll know a lot more about Tony Dungy and Lovie Smith's relationship, faith, and race. We'll know the career stats for not only Peyton Manning and Rex Grossman, but Dan Klecko and Jason McKie. I'll try not to saturate this space with such pedestrian stuff. This is exciting for my father and me because he is a Colts fan and I am a Bears fan. That is one story you won't hear about on ESPN.



At January 22, 2007 1:21 PM, Blogger Wee Katie said...

Congratulations. You'll have to tell me what to look for during the game, since I'm a football illiterate.

At January 22, 2007 10:51 PM, Blogger Randomness said...

I didnt realize they were "your" Bears. Nice to know.


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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Happy 65th Birthday Cassius.

One customer's name today was James Crow. Yes, James, as in Jim, Crow. I don't know if he is a legislator. But during the same week as the commemoration of Martin Luther King Junior's and Muhammad Ali's birthday: James Crow tops the cake.

Speaking of cakes, I like the TV show Ace of Cakes. It is mainly a reality show in the vein of American Chopper, where you just see the goings on of a business that happens to make very creative artistic cakes. In the episode I'm currently watching Duff is delivering a cake of Wrigley Field to an eightieth birthday party in Chicago. Duff is from Baltimore. So he drives a cake 700 miles. What dedication: to pay someone a lot of money to make a cake and drive so far, just to eat cake.

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At January 19, 2007 3:24 PM, Blogger Voth said...

Cubs fans will pay for such things.

You got tickets for MO?

At January 19, 2007 7:38 PM, Blogger Daniel said...


At January 20, 2007 7:58 AM, Blogger Voth said...

Nice. I'm excited.

At January 22, 2007 12:14 AM, Blogger Michael Covarrubias said...


Are you being intentionally and ironically disrespectful of Muhammad Ali by calling him by his slave name? The customer's name makes me think that perhaps your title knowingly invokes the voice of opression in order to identify and belittle it.


Do you know if Ali's demanding of Ernie Terrell "What's my name, fool? What's my name?" is the source of the trash-talking dominating tactic we still hear today. "What's my name" or "say my name" often followed by "-bitch!"

At January 22, 2007 7:50 AM, Blogger Daniel said...

Answer: Yes. Foundationally, if not consciously, the fact that I thought of Jim Crow when seeing the customer's name, and then paired it with two civil rights figures atests to that. My mind was working that way. Part of it is layering his Cassius and Muhammad names, and part is an affectation like using Samuel Clemens (I want to show what I know.), which is belittling religiously in this case.

Answer: I don't know, but there has been a show on ESPN 2 called Ali Rap that has a bunch of interviews discussing how Ali was the fountainhead of hip-hop culture, so that is a possibility, but I sounds like you have more knowledge on the details, so I'll defer.



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Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Bear Down.

Bear Down, Chicago Bears. (If you have a challenge, you need to pause and confront it.)

Make every play clear the way to victory. (Each choice you make or act you take contributes to overcoming or succumbing to said challenge.)

Bear Down, Chicago Bears, put up a fight with a might so fearlessly. (Don't be afraid to attack your challenge boldly.)

We'll never forget the way you thrilled the nation with your T-formation. (You have had success in the past. It is okay to use that to inspire you to success again.)

Bear down, Chicago Bears, and let them know why you're wearing the crown. (Be proud. Be confident.)

You're the pride and joy of Illinois, Chicago Bears, bear down. (You're not alone. You have a support group that cares about you and your struggles.)

The Chicago Bears that I have rooted for since I was a young lad are playing in their conference's championship game this Sunday. If they win, they get to be part of the TV program that is watched by more people around the world than any other each year.

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Sunday, January 14, 2007

How Much I'm Worth

I am worth $2,679,690 on
How much are you worth?

Tonight, doing my laundry at Wendy's, she was treating her dog, Colbert a St. Bernard, like a human and holding him in her lap. Bernards are wont to slobber and this one is coming into his own in that respect. I noticed some slobber on her hoodie, but said nothing. A moment later she was licked in the face or something, so she went to wipe off her mouth or chin or cheek on her sweatshirt. You guessed it; she wiped her face in the slobber on her hoodie. I found this quite comical.

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At January 17, 2007 9:02 AM, Blogger Voth said...

My dear friend,

I do not find you worth $2,679,690.

Much love,


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Friday, January 12, 2007

Dinner Takes All

Tonight on TLC I caught a show I haven't seen before: Dinner Takes All. The concept seems to be that they take four people who take turns hosting a dinner party for the other three. Each of the participants then rates each evening and the winner, I guess takes all, there are still thirty minutes left. The third contestant is hosting as I type. Her name is Megan and she was a Girl Scout from 1st grade to high school, graduated from the CIA, Culinary Institute of America, and now works editing professional recipes for use by hoi polloi. The first hostess was Katelyn, a model with a nice loft. The second was Leo, who in the tour of his apartment had the obligatory "Here is where the magic happens" comment when sitting on his bed. Interestingly enough, when Megan was giving the tour of her apartment she used this comment to describe her kitchen. I think they might have been refering to different types of magic. The winner gets a thousand dollars.

Another show that I enjoy and find really well done is America's Game. It is on NFL Network, and I think produced by them too. They polled a lot of people, writers, players, coaches, and had them rank their top ten Super Bowl teams. From those rankings they took the top twenty. Now they are doing a count down from 20 to 1 each week. Each show is narrated by a famous male actor, like Martin Sheen, Donald Sutherland, Bruce Willis, and then they interview three people from the team while covering the season and environment in which that team won the Super Bowl. They do a good job of getting different perspectives by their choice in interviewees. I think even if you don't like football you could be drawn in by the stories of the men involved.

I'm out.



At January 14, 2007 1:18 PM, Blogger Ellen said...

myspace wouldn't let me post a reply to your comment, so here you go.

the group is called The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players and i highly recommend you going to their show if you can. it's a very good time and buy a bag or something from them.

At January 14, 2007 1:19 PM, Blogger Ellen said...


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Sunday, January 07, 2007

Mail Call

I didn't check today's (Saturday's) mail til yesterday (Saturday, since it is now 12:40 ante meridian). But today's mail held a letter from my father and a missing Christmas gift and note/letter from my mother. Each was post marked January 3rd, but I'm betting each was taken to the post office on Tuesday the 2nd, which because of Gerald R! Ford's death was a government vacation. This purturbed me a bit, first because they used his death to extend an observed holiday, when they could have used the 26th through the 29th just as easily. The second reason is not mine (at bottom of page) but is a reason nonetheless: it was a national day of mourning. Why are we mourning the death of a good 93 year old man? Christians who believe in immediate afterlife would have us believe that he is already in Heaven. Why should we be sad about that fact?

But this is not a time for grumbling but rejoicing. How great in this era of e-connection that I receive two letters of integrity. I think there are some great things about written correspondence. The permanence of pen on paper. The buying of the stamp. The licking of the envelope. Salutatory and valedictory deliberations (post scriptory deliberations?).

So if you would like one of these from me, send me your address. I'll do my best in the coming days and weeks to seek out the addresses I already have and act on them, but if you want a guarantee, give it to me.

Kind Regards,


PS I feel bad for Tony Romo.

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At January 08, 2007 8:16 AM, Blogger Voth said...

I fail to see how the cheerleaders lack of attire helps the team. Feminism aside, the players should perhaps be focused on football. There is plenty of time for nudity after the game.

See, I read your links. Even parts you don't post about. It is because I care.

At January 08, 2007 7:34 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

I'm glad that you care. It isn't that scant attire for cheerleaders helps the team; it is merely symptomatic of the level of professionalism and dedication to their task that presumably the entire organization has. And hopefully that professionalism means the team will perform well too. Players probably don't even see or watch the cheerleaders, but the fans do, and happy fans means loud fans and loud fans mean homefield advantage.

At January 12, 2007 9:01 AM, Blogger Voth said...

I've charged the batteries in my camera. If you wish, you may take pics of a broken ebay purchase tonight.


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Friday, January 05, 2007

A New Post

This evening was a good one over all. I went to the Huskers' wrestling dual against Oregon State. For good or for bad, the Beavers ended up on top. It didn't help that the Huskers are still missing a Heavyweight wrestler, so they have a forfeit which gives the other team 6 points each dual. They lost 21-15.

But things started looking up when I went to Amigo's King's Classic for a King Royale and a Steak 'n' Tater Burrito, best of both worlds (American-Fast and American-Mexican). Then for dessert I went to Ivanna Cone for the first time in a long time. They had two of my favorite workers tonight and the one remembered me.

I had a dish of chocolate peanut butter crunch, which had Grape-Nuts for its crunch, and Mini-Cini, a toned down version of their cinnamon. I didn't realize it was Grape-Nuts making the crunch until about two-thirds of the way through, but they worked well, holding their crunch to the end. The mini-cini wasn't as good as the regular cinnamon, if you're going to use a flavor, embrace it.

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Thursday, January 04, 2007

Thursday Morning 3AM

My dream epiphany of the day is that The Simpsons and The Sopranos start their show in essentially the same way with the patriarch driving home from a day of work through their respective communities. Amazing, I know.

In other news, it isn't a good habit to bed down after 4 in the morning. I acquired this habit this past week between Christmas and New Year's Day. Culminating with my 11:30 rising on Sunday not ending til 10:40ish on Monday. The problem is going back to a sleep schedule that includes you waking up and attending work before noon. It was fine last week because while AdventSource was open, we weren't answering the phones to take orders, so I just had to process orders from the web. Now, however, the phones are back up, and I'm still on the same schedule, which is complicating when I try to break out of it by going to bed at 11:30 and wake up at 3. My other bit of advice: Share sparkling wine.

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At January 05, 2007 5:19 PM, Blogger Michael Covarrubias said...

Doesn't the Flintstones start the same way? And the King of Queens?

At January 05, 2007 10:43 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

You're right about the Flintstones. I've never seen an episode of the King of Queens start to finish, so I'll take your word for it. My dream epiphany wasn't excluding the others, just connecting the other two.


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Monday, January 01, 2007

A Taste of the Word Hoard

Now the whole earth had one language and one speech. And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar, and they dwelt there. Then they said to one another, "Come let us make bricks and bake them thoroughly." They had brick for stone, and they had asphalt for mortar. And they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth."

But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. And the Lord said, "Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them. Come let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another's speech."

So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they ceased building the city. Therefore its name is called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.
Genesis 11:1-9 NKJV emphasis mine.

Growing up, I was always taught that God confused language because the people blasphemed by building a tower so that they wouldn't drown in another flood; they had no faith in the Rainbow. Without going to any of the provided cross-references, my most recent reading of this passage reveals more ire with the gathering of people and the power they have when they can communicate clearly. (Generally, the passage seems a bit apocryphal too, but I'm not an authority, or even student enough, of the topic to make that judgement either.) Methinks God wanted to keep man down, and keep him separated too (cue The Offspring). Now there could be legitimate reasons for this like preventing disease, an excuse for circumscision in a desert environment, or populating all the corners of the earth. But it seems arbitrary to me, like the requirement of a blood sacrifice from Cain and Abel.

So, if God makes us impotent and separate by muddling our language, does clarifying our language empower and unite us? Speaking the same language sure would be a start to that end.

Don't get me wrong, I revel in the myriad grammars, phonemes, and lexicons. For example, there is a language that has a case that indicates the responsibility of an action. They have a different way to write the word for "I fell down." (and it was my fault) and "I fell down." (and it wasn't my fault). But what is so wrong about being powerful and united? I might forego some variety to that end. Sure someone said learning another language is like gaining a second soul, but what will I do with another soul?

What do you think?

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