Alphabetical I in order speak

I came up with that today. It can be something you say just to make people think you're weird, or funny, or both. As with any other saying I come up with, you must use the copyright information if you use it... e.g. "Alphabetical I in order speak. 2006 Connell Copyright Jason. w00t."

Also, a funny thing from work today. Rob and I were meeting three others at the lunch place, and we were in the left turning lane (Rob was driving), and this SEPTA bus coming from the other way was half way in our lane. We were talking about football, and as the bus drew closer, I slowed my words like "T.... O.... is .... gonna.... " and it passed by. I stopped what I was saying and said "Sorry, my life just flashed before my eyes." And Rob goes "Well, you'd probably be fine but I'd be screwed." To which I said "Your life just flashed before my eyes." HAHA.

Work's going good. It's like when I leave in the morning, I don't feel like I'm going to "work" per se, just going to hang out with a bunch of guys and girls who are my age and are cool and funny, and I happen to program there. But we have toys too.

Just Four Connell Brothers Representing Today

While we would love to get the whole fan-damily down to the Phillies game today, only four of six brothers will be there. Scott, Jeff, Me, and Pat. That's a recipe for disaster, still. We'll be getting there between 11 and 11:30, and the game starts at 1:20 PM. However many Connell brothers go, there's always a chance for a 100% violent removal from the stadium. Either from something that we're all doing wrong, or if one of us gets kicked out, the others will quickly become the judge and jury, prove the guilty party's innocence with violent resolve, and thus be kicked out on their own right. There are only a limited number of chances to see them in the wild, in their natural habitat, doing completely crazy sh@%, it should surely not disappoint this time, simply because it never ever does :)

After the game, it's block party time!! Lots more drinking, celebrating a Phillies' win (or mourning a loss), talking about Howard's home run last night, and hopefully one today, and loads of laughing, live music, and love!! Ok, that sounds Woodstock'ish. Loads of laughing, live music, being wasted, and having a great time! That's better. Tune in tomorrow (God help the internet if I decide to make a post tonight!) for an update on random recollections and hopefully some actual occurrences during the day, and possibly in the order of which they happened, and if all goes well, it won't be memories from other times or lives mixed in with today's story.

Football Season Starts Today!!!!

Also, the Phillies play at 1pm!! Today could be the greatest day ever. I'm watching the games over at my brother Scott's. I was there last night too, we watched Penn State (Nikki, my sister-in-law, graduated from Penn State and is a fan for life), but they got romped by Notre Dame. I played with my neice, Meghan, and my nephew Danny. Danny did his "E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES!!!" chant. He's 3, so it comes out like "E-L-G EAGLES!!!" It's the cutest thing.

Some people watch the preseason games. I could care less. I'm a huge Phillies fan right now. One time during preseason, they both played at like 7 o'clock one Thursday night, and I didn't turn on the Eagles, not even once, until the Phillies were over. They could make the playoffs, and in baseball, anything can happen after that. A lot of World Series winners have been Wild Card teams. Boston '04 was one... So anything can happen. But baseball will be in the background today. It's f@#%@ing football season!!!

I went golfing with my Dad yesterday. I was out until around 1:30 am on Friday. I was completely bombed. My Dad told me to meet him at their house at 8 am. But instead, plans changed a bit. My Dad tried to call me and I didn't answer. So he came over at 7:55! I woke up right away, got dressed, got some stuff together, brushed my teeth, put the stupid dog in her crate, and met my Dad outside. At this point, I realized how hung over I was. Oh man, golf was not going to be fun today. I had a monster headache for the first 7-8 holes. I wasn't even functional until the 5th or 6th hole, and by the end of the round, I tried to think back to the beginning of the round, and it seemed like a lifetime ago. Being just the two of us, the starter tried to pair us up with this couple, but they didn't want to because they were there celebrating their anniversary or something. God bless 'em. So we got paired with these two guys, probably mid to late 50s. Friendly guys. Of course, you're supposed to be friendly to the people you get paired with, it's a friendly game. Not being functional, I was like "Hi.". I didn't say much other than cracking a joke, like about a bunker that they both got stuck in, saying "You could spend a lifetime in there." It was a brutal, brutal bunker with steep sides. The one guy almost had to go out sideways.

After an advil that my Dad had, a cheeseburger after nine, and a f2#%@ing sh@#%load of water, I felt much better. I was back to myself :P At this point, I explained that I was out celebrating the night before because I got a new job, and was probably still wasted when I started the round! They understood :) One of them actually offered me work since he found out I was a programmer! I gave him my info so we should be in touch.

I had this shot on "the humpback hole" at Paxon Hollow. I drove way left and couldn't get to the green, so I chipped out to the edge of the fairway, around 140 yards away. I took out my 7 iron, knowing it was the exact club I needed. I hit it, and it was beautiful. It bounced, and again, and rolled up and settled right behind the cup, 2 feet away. The two guys I was with cheered and clapped, I took a bow. It was awesome.

The funniest thing about this story, though, is that I scored better on the front nine than I did on the back. And by 9 whole strokes! The back is harder, but still... I was totally out of it for the front nine, shooting a 44! I thank water and food for my miraculous front nine.

Miracles and the Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich

Observe exhibits A and B:

Immediately I thought "Stupid forwards..." right?

I got that email from my Dad at 1:17 PM as indicated by Gmail. Within the hour (2pm), I got a call from my recruiter, Audrea, that I got the job. I called my Dad and told him that I got it, and he asked "Did you get my email?" I said "Oh yeah, but I didn't send it to anyone..." And he said "I know, I did, and something good happened to me within the hour. You called telling me you got the job."

How about that?! Don't worry, I still won't forward them. It didn't work because of sending it to 2342352 people. The question is, of course, are you the type of person that sees things as coincidence, or do you believe in miracles? Sorry, that was blatant theft from the movie "Signs". I'm definitely not saying that there isn't a higher power at work here (in fact, there most definitely was!). Just that I don't believe in forwards! They're the same source of "Send this to as many people as you can, and Bill Gates will send you a check for a bazillion dollars."

Also, there was this little joke going around between my recruiters (Laura and Audrea) and I. One time I had eaten only toast for two days straight, so I emailed saying

"I probably need to find something soon, since I am now in a "save money" mode, and have been living on toast for 2 days!"

They had vowed to find me a job :) Every once in a while, the joke would be replenished with new material. Hilarity ensued. I won, no lie, $1.65 on the nickel slots in Atlantic City and bragged that I splurged and got jelly! Livin' it up, indeed. So, they promised me a treat if I get the job (other than, of course, getting the job). While filling out the papers, I had a delicious peanut butter and jelly sandwich on wheat bread! It was gourmet. Thank you Laura and Audrea!

If you need a job, definitely email me and I'll direct you to them. Their company is called "JCPW", short for, obviously, "Jason Connell's Personal Workforce". Their website is, which has a different name, but it'll be changed soon. I got lost driving to their office because I couldn't find it under the new name, then realized that they probably didn't update the directory at the entrance to the parking lot yet. They gotta get on that.

I report to work on Monday. Finally!

I'm waiting for the call

I feel like Beavis and Butthead. That time when there's nothing on TV until many hours later, and they have to find stuff to do to kill the time. "Hey Butthead, I think I have to throw up..." "Cool, that should like, take some time."

I've been working out, playing video games, watching more comedy, playing guitar, etc. I'm running out of stuff to do. I could get in my car and drive around, but that costs gas, e.g. money. I could play more guitar but my finger's about to fall off. I could hit golf balls out front, but that could cost lots of money. I'm golfing tomorrow with my Dad, that should be fun. We're going to Paxon Hollow where I once shot a 41. Err, on the back nine. I had like 4 birdies in a row. Missed 2 putts on 18, else I would have shot 39. Motherf@#$@#$@#. Til tomorrow.

I woke up today and felt like death due to the fact that I've smoked like 4 packs of cigarettes in 2 days. And I hadn't worked out since Monday. I had to work out, it expands my lung capacity if something like that happens. And I have to find something else to do besides sit and drink coffee and smoke.

I could watch TV, but that's boring. I've already seen the first 4 "SportsRise"'s and "SportsCenter"'s on Comcast and ESPN respectively. I have "Syriana" and both times I've watched it, I paused it to go to the bathroom or something, and never got back to watching it. So, as it stands, that movie makes no sense to me. I guess I should see the end eventually. Not today though, I have the attention span of a goldfish. I might work out again, that's about the only beneficial thing I can do, besides program more, but see my note on my temporary ADD in the previous sentence about why that's impossible.

Guitar's fun though. I've been playing more Jimi, learning how he does some stuff that makes his songs sound like no others. I like his Blues album best. I love "Once I had a Woman", and "Bleeding Heart", and "Born Under a Bad Sign". When I first heard them, I had a sliver of an idea of the notes he was playing, but now as I play more and try to immitate, it's becoming more clear. He's just a genius.

Video games are frustrating right now. They're much better enjoyed after a long day of work.

I laugh at the titles of the messages that land in spam in my gmail account.

I'm gonna take a shower.

[Update] It's weird. I got the job WOOHOO!!! But the weird thing.. I'll explain later. Gotta go fill out paperwork and stuff.

Today I needed comedy

I woke up in the wee hours of the morning (3:30 I think) again, and I've just been stressed out. Digital cable was tuned to "HBO Comedy" (Beaner had watched some show on there, then watched a free "On Demand" Donnie Darko, but fell asleep to it) which I usually find useless and a waste of money, but right when I was in the process of waking up, but still in that asleep phase, I heard something that made me laugh. This standup show came on that was taped in 1990, and it was this guy called "Blake" something. I watched it and it felt good to laugh. So I went to HBO on demand to see if they had any standup shows, and of course they did. Chris Rock was on there, I watched it and laughed. Then there was a Robert Wuhl special which was on history, but it was classic and funny, but only 29 minutes long. At this time, it was around 5:30 am. They also had Dane Cook's "Vicious Circle". That made me laugh as well. It felt good.

I was just pissed and nervous and anxious. Pissed because I took my car to the dealership to get inspected. I learned the hard way. They won't let anything go. This was a bill for $1300. They wouldn't bill me, so that pissed me off. They need payment then and there. Nervous because I had a job interview today, which went pretty well I think. We'll see. Anxious because I'm just an anxious person. My anxiety gets me up at 3:30 AM then keeps me up because I'm anxious, wondering if I got enough sleep to not yawn at the interview. It's a chicken and the egg thing.

As I sit and listen to Jimi

It's 6am and I couldn't sleep last night. Ryan Howard hit his 53rd homer of the season, Chase Utley his 25th to win it in 10th innings, I did manage to settle down for a decent nap of like 4 hours until midnight. After that, I've been too excited to sleep. I have a job interview at a company that I really want to work at.

Besides being a creative small company which has impressed me in the past, as I've seen their work long ago, in a location that is totally awesome, 8 miles away, and me having lots in common with the guy I phone interviewed with last week... if you take all that out, it will still be an awesome place to work. Well, actually, if you take all that out... hmm. Anyway, all those things are a part of it, so it makes it an incredibly appealing job at a time when I've been unemployed for 2 months, having turned down a job where I would have been miserable, without a lick of fear or certainty for the future.

"No fear?" you ask? Yes, no fear, baby. Somehow, I've always managed. Struggled but managed. Being a contractor, the only thing that's set in stone is that you'll be unemployed after a few months. So you can just try to save up enough to get you to the next job. It makes saving for a house a pain (not House of Pain). You jump around jobs a lot (get it?! Jump Around?!? I'm hilarious). But that has an upside, if you do what you're supposed to do there. You meet a lot of people and they are generally willing to give you a positive reference for your next job. There's another benefit to contracting. You get to test the waters of a lot of places. If you don't see it fitting your lifestyle or just generally don't like the work, then you can leave, and the best part is there's no hard feelings! No burnt bridges. It just makes it difficult, during a break, to make Ends meet (another joke!! In this case, it's Everlast, not House of Pain. I'm on fire today).

However, if and when I find that place, where I love the work, love the people, the size is just right, and everything I consider secondary is beneficial, like location, hours, flexibility, pay, route to work (must pass at least one Dunkin Donuts and Wawa), parking, lack of office politics, extracurricular activities, etc... when I find that place, I'm gonna try my ass off to stay there. This might be the place. More on that later.

I'm gonna be one bada#% mother f@#%er!

Right now, I'm addicted to the pain and stiffness the morning after a good workout. I'm not really doing a professional workout, like, I'm only doing situps and pushups for the past few weeks. But the idea is to just lose some weight, not necessarily sculpt anything right now. Although, I can feel that I'm a lot stronger, more windful, less stressed, and more healthy in general.

After a few more weeks of pushing my limit and pain every day, I think I'll be a badass motherf@#%er. Today, even, some guy came to turn our electricity off (we're two days late... PECO are a bunch of bastards), and I popped my head out the window and he was still there. I said "Hey, we paid this morning." I told him how much. He said "Alright, let me call and see if it's ok that I turn it back on." So I went down there with two gigantic guns. He looked at me, held back some tears, and said "I'll turn it back on, we won't tell them." This guy was a big dude too. He feared my presence. He figured I could probably power an entire city with kinetic energy from one of my fists.

Ok, maybe I'm not that strong yet :P He was a nice guy too, so that might have something to do with it. Also, probably because I begged him to turn it back on and not whoop my ass. Plus my coffee would get cold. He saved us money. So thank you nice Mr. PECO worker. So, if you try that stunt again, when I'm strong enough, I'll remember this and only whoop your ass a little.

I'm f#@%ing bored

That's when I know it's time to get back to work. I've been jobless for just over two months now. Let's review what I've been doing during the days.

For the first 3 weeks or so, I was heavy into programming.

For the next 4 weeks or so, I played video games mainly.

For the last week, I've been playing my guitar a lot, looking for a job, emailing people, planning parties 3 months in advance, emailing again just to make sure they read my first email, actually leaving messages on myspace for people, planning on getting my car inspected since it has 3 days before it's due, playing my guitar more, reveling at the size of my blisters on my fingers since I haven't played that hard in months, avoiding video games and programming like it was my job, dreading another day of the same thing. I need to f@#%@ing work, and not just for the money. Why did I wake up so early? Do I only need 5 hours of sleep now? That would rock, sleeping sucks. I should write more software.

Oh, and this is the worst, as it had been stricken from my mind as soon as I thought of it and I needed hypnosis to bring it back... I considered doing Pilates (no idea of that spelling). That's the exercise thing. I'll stick to my situps and pushups, thanks, it's already working wonders. That and living on toast helps. I don't have a scale, but I've lost about a half of an inch from my cheeks. At least I think that's from working out, it could be the fact that I don't smile lately since I'm bored to tears, so my face just looks thinner. Plus I shaved my head. It looks awesome, ask anyone. I'll take a picture though, since I could probably submit only a headshot to Playboy and they'd put it in as the centerfold, g@#damn it I'm beautiful. HAHA I kill me. Anyway, keep an eye out for fabricat... err... fabulous tales of gainful employment, and hopefully a happy Episode Two to my dream last night. Feel free to psychoanalyze that one.

[Update] Here's a new picture of me, notice how f@%#ing bored I am

I also uploaded some other pictures lying around on my digital camera, like this one, which happens to be bad-ASS

There's no "photoshopping", since I can't afford that program, only ones like The GIMP, which is like PhotoShop, but requires much less money than the entire GNP of a small country.

Also, this one, which proves that I got a hole in one on Tiger Woods 06 for the PSP.

It was the 8th hole, I believe. However, this picture is no longer that important since I made another hole in one and saved the replay! I f@#%ing rock at that game. You can view video of my second hole in one by visiting Downloads and searching for downloads under the label "psp".

Here's a couple of pictures of the kids:

[Update #2] Truth be told, may it be a bit disturbing, my Mom came over for a short visit (she came bearing gifts!!! I got new socks!!!), and she said I'm a hottie. Now it's official, ladies. Of course, she thought the gorilla that is my Dad was attractive about 40 years ago, so I may be reading more into that than I should...

This is what I dream about

I had to get this on "paper" since I just woke up and it's still fresh in my brain.

Ok, so someone sells me a CD store for $10,000. I have a few employees. It's an old type of store with a back room, on a corner, with a blacktop area between the store and the next house, and a front yard. It's really a house converted to a CD store. Of course, the logic in buying a CD store right now with digital music being so popular hardly exists, but I did it. I sleep there, probably since it's a house type thing. The first day goes by, there's people lined up outside on the blacktop ready to get in and buy music or coffee, which I sell both of. I talk to my cute blonde employee, and we went over how to order more stock, and tell her my strategy will be to find out what sells best, buy any CD that we sold out of, and buy a steadily decreasing rate of the top 20 brand new albums, by popularity... so like 20 of the most popular band's newest album, down to 5 of the 20th popular band's newest. So we're set on that. I walk around the store, and notice I have TONS of CDs, laid out in boxes on fold-out tables, sorted by genre, the alphabetically, with a "rare" section. I remember thinking "Was the $10,000 a one time deal or do I have to pay it again next month?? If so, I'm F@%#ED!!" The store, which I don't know the name of, is winding down, and for some reason, I'm beat and leave it to two of my employees to close it down. In dreams, I don't sleep, so instantly I'm awake and it's morning. I walk out and start brewing up some coffee, and I notice the front door (which is one of two front doors, this one leads out to the lawn, the other to the blacktop, and they're right across from each other) is WIDE open. I hoped someone decided to show up early. A horror sweeps over me, and I look at the first table I can get my eyes on... my store, in the beginning of its first full day of being mine... was robbed completely blind. Every CD is gone, but bless the robber's heart, he didn't take one drop of coffee, and left every other coffee related item. I see a Scotch taped message on the wall that simply says "Thanx!" with a skull type smily face drawn on it in blue marker on "college ruled" paper. The day fast forwards to lunch, where I pay for the food that was ordered by my employees without my approval, but it's stromboli, so I really don't care. My rastafarian/Jamaican employee ask me if I got the change. I did see some money lying on the lawn, and wondered if that's what he was referring to. Then I find out what happened. My one employee (I have 3) takes me aside and says "Dude, I'm so sorry about leaving the door open. Jenny (my other employee who I talked with about stocking the place earlier) kept talking to me as I was leaving, 4 times, she wouldn't leave me alone, and when I left, I was sure it was closed and locked." But, I was more upset about not having a CD in stock, being a CD store and all, and having customers come in and say that we don't have any CDs.

Then I woke up. Weird, huh?

Good Luck Charm

I realized this the other day, and it lacks any realistic explanation. I haven't watched a Phillies game that ended in a Phillies loss in many, many months. The last game I went to, they got their asses handed to them, which was like June 17th or something. Then their was the All Star break, and the trades. It could be that the team is just a whole new team (which is true), but then explain this...

If I happen to turn on the game in session, it will be tied or a close game, but as I'm watching, the Phillies will break out and score a lot. The other day, I turn on the game. It's in the 4th inning, 0-0. Phillies break it open with 4 runs. That's like every time I catch a game not from the beginning. Last night, I turn on the game going into the top of the 9th. The Cubs just hit a home run to go 1-1, but I missed it. Howard had homered earlier to reach 44 on the season. I watch and the Phillies win. Of course, I don't believe in circumstances like that. It is all just coincidence. But it's eirie (is that spelled right?).

Like, down the shore (in Delaware), Steve and I got done watching a movie and turned on the Phils. They won after it was a close game, with them losing at first. I missed a game that Saturday, and they lost. They went 6-4 on the home stand, and I saw only the wins, and wasn't at my TV for the other times. This is a 10 game road trip they're on now, and I've seen most of each of the games, they're 3-0 so far. They play today at 2pm. I might have jinxed them, if there is such a thing, or I'll be further delusioned into thinking I'm good luck if they win. Of course, I want them to win. Maybe I'll go down at like 2:40 and watch, to see if they score runs only when I'm watching. That would be crazy whack funky.

Weird Dreams and Propaganda

I had this weird dream after I fell asleep watching the replay of the Phillies game last night. It was around 12 midnight when I finally zonked out. If you've never watched a Phillies game, you still might have heard of Harry Kalas. He's the Phillies' TV and radio voice. Well, he's getting old, and his vision is fading, as well as his memory. Sometimes he'll botch calls like if a ball is caught at the wall or if it goes out and the guy there tries to catch it but it's obviously way out of reach of him, he'll report the opposite of what happened. This dream was along those lines. Basically, it was a ground ball up the third base line with nobody on base, and Harry Kalas reported it as a two run homer. I was like "WTF?".

I turned on CNN after waking up this morning, and caught a majority of "In The footsteps of Bin Laden", which is an interesting, two-sided show. It ended with me feeling rather informed about where bin Laden might be, why he "hates America", why al Qaeda was formed, and all this other stuff that will cause the FBI and CIA to beeline to this website and flag it as "terroristic". Anyway, it was over, and Anderson Cooper is on the screen, informing me of the next time the show will be on. Of course, the bad part of it was, he was basically calling bin Laden a slew of names that I wouldn't say around my neices or nephews. So, I realized I didn't like news shows telling me what to think of these people. If they realized that intelligent people watch their shows, then they should assume that most people can come to their own conclusions, and they just need all the facts in order to do this, and that's why we watch the news. Telling us that Osama bin Laden is evil is not a fact, that's an opinion. It might be a widespread opinion, but it's an opinion, and one that most people would find to be "right", which doesn't necessarily make it fact.

I bought "Munich" with my limited funds, and I've watched it three times. It's a good flick. Anyway, there's this part where the dude who plays the Incredible Hulk is in Germany trying to find answers, and he comes across this German frauline, and she's a Philosopher. She comments from a work entitled "The Philosophy of Right" I think, by some philosoph. I immediately became intrigued. I haven't researched it, but I'm sure it's a real work. Now I have to read it. Because what's right to someone is completely wrong to someone else, and therefore couldn't possibly be recorded in history books as "fact". Of course, we record it as fact, and therefore it's propaganda.

Yes, the show "In the Footsteps of Bin Laden" is also propaganda. But there are a lot of facts in it, but we see just the facts about al Qaeda attacking US interests, and the US retaliating and weakening al Qaeda interests like their safe harbor in Afghanistan, the Taliban. Facts that try to sculpt a conclusion, in this case that al Qaeda is doing what they do just because they felt like it... with no motivation. The show brushes aside the fact that the US has held military posts in Saudi Arabia, Islam's holy land, for many years. This would be like going and taking a dump on an altar in a church. Because of oil, of course. They may be right. All they want is for the US to leave their land, which may be impossible without an alternative source of fuel. It just so happens that the biggest source of oil also happens to be a desert filled with people of another religion, and that religion's holy land. They'd drill for oil under Rome or Jerusalem if they knew there was a well there.

Oh well. Time for coffee. I'm not on bin Laden's side here, just saying that propaganda sucks, we are smart people, most of the time, and we don't need opinions of news reporters to shape our own opinions. It's weird how the two topics of this post intermingle. I like to watch a sporting event where the announcer is rooting for the same team I am, but I can't watch a news show where they are rooting for or against anyone. I don't know... does that seem weird?

This thing still works?!

It's been a while since I've been at a computer... I went down to Delaware on Wednesday and didn't get back until today, Sunday or something, 13 Aug 06 @ 10:20 PM. My "Check Engine" light came on during the 1.5 hour ride home, which serves me right... I haven't done anything to that car but put 8000 miles on it since my last oil change. I'm taking it in this week. I need it to last me a while. It smells funny.

I went golfing with my Dad and my brother Steve on Thursday. I sucked. It was funny. I blame the course. See, the fairway was pristine, and so unbelievably soft. I'd take a regular swing at it and take out a divot the size of my foot each time (I'm a size 12). This wasn't good because I wasn't planning on it, and my ball would go half the distance I would have expected. I bought a new golf bag. The label read "$99.95" and I paid "$99.95" for it, thanks to Delaware's tax laws leading to a lack of sales tax. I saved $6 compared to buying it in PA. PA could learn something from Delaware... like.... hmmm.... no sales tax might be the only thing. Although, I think their liquor regulations might also be a bit light compared to PA, like they could sell beer in gas stations, but I don't know for sure.

My trip down was exciting. I decided to go Route 9 which runs along the bay. I wrongly assumed that there'd be civilization down that road, and I'd be able to get gas on it. Boy was that a mistake. I went on "E" with a corn field on the right of me, a bay on the left, and hadn't passed anything, not a telephone pole, or a street light, or even a f@#%@$@#ing stop sign in 10 miles. I was pretty sure I would not make it to golf the next day at this point. I kept going, passed a random farm house here and there, then when I'd been on E for about 10 minutes, I decided that I would die if I didn't just turn right in search of civilization. Luckily, about 2 miles up the road was the quaint little town of Smyrna, Delaware. I passed a bar on the way and was so tempted to go in, but decided against it because it was cut out of a corn field, I swear to God. There were 3 pickup trucks in the parking lot. I'm a city boy, I would be either laughed or kicked out of that bar. Anyway, found Smyrna, got gas, got on Rt. 1 and said F@#%$ 9. 9 sucked. I travel at night, in case you're wondering. It was about 9:40 PM when I found civilization. I had gone 40 miles down a lonely and dark country road and about 20 of them on E. It was an adventure, and if I had it to do all over again, I would have done the same thing.

Nothing like spending the weekend with Kira, Caden and Ethan, too. They're so cute. Today we went to the arcade and fun place... rides and stuff. And on the beach. During one 10 minute stint, I was in charge of Caden. He's four. I point to this one ride, and asked him if he wanted to go on it. I hadn't seen it in motion, but it looked like a normal kiddie ride; one that goes in endless circles and relatively low speeds... very predictable and boring. He goes on, in a car all by himself, and this thing takes off. It's not the Himalayas or something, but it's like that in that it changes elevation while it goes in a circle. It's moving pretty fast, and I'm watching Caden for tears, and hoping his parents didn't see what I did! Phew, it's coming to a stop... wait a second, the operator says something about "reverse"!! Oh f@#$@!! It goes at the same exact speed in reverse. This time, I'm panicking. However, no sign of tears or parents made me relax a bit. The ride stopped... finally. He comes off, and we go find Patty who's with the other kids. I'm like "I'm sorry, I put him on that ride not knowing what it was like." At which point Caden interjects with "That was THE BEST!!!" HAHA!! Huge sigh of relief. But Caden, if no one else, could handle that ride, and he's been on a rollercoaster with his dad, my brother, Steve. Thinking back, he was absolutely bored to tears on the other kiddie rides.

Not much else happened. I'm still looking for a job, but that will be coming to an end soon. I lost only a few hours being down in Delaware for four days though, so that's pretty good.

The News sucks

It only takes me about 5 minutes of watching CNN to hate it and pretty much every news show. First, there's the incidents in Lebonon which I'm OK with watching. But then, they talk about Mel Gibson's anti-Semitist remarks, which he apologized for, leave it alone, and his DUI. Then they say his blood alcohol level was .12, and in California, the legal limit is .08. From my "alcohol" class in college (I did actually take an alcohol class... hoo boy, there's a good story to do with that too), they said that .08 is like drinking two beers and hitting the road. So .12, from math, is only 1 more beer. It's the law, and he rightfully got a DUI because of that, and that's not my issue. I know I get buzzed if it's been a while and I drink three beers in an hour or so, but comon... people are still pretty much capable of anything, and in some cases more capable of other things, after three beers. I speak of course of Beirut (AKA beer pong). CNN brought it up like it was a huge deal, and that Mel Gibson is now a lesser person, like "We can all now laugh at Mel Gibson when on coffee break." I'm not particularly fond of Mel, I'm more attacking peoples' attitudes towards someone who makes a mistake then I am defending Mr. Gibson. Give it up, Perfecty O'Perfect.

Sometimes I love TV though. Yesterday on Comcast SportsNet, on the show Daily News Live, was Charles Barkley. He's a great interview. Comcast should release that interview on DVD, and any other interview with him. He was my favorite player growing up. In fact, in third grade, I guess for my 9th birthday, I invited him to my party. I was the talk of the whole school, since I told one person that Charles Barkley might show up. I had hookups, since my Dad went to school with John Nash, then GM of the Sixers. Sir Charles couldn't make it, I'm afraid to say, but in the side door of the house, my brother noticed the door had been held open by something. We never use it but it's on the street, so easily accessible to delivery trucks and whatnot. To help you further imagine, the house is on a corner, but the front door is not on the street that the address is listed as, that door is the side door. Anyway, he checked it and it was a box addressed to me!! Charles Barkley, via John Nash, had sent me an personal autographed Sixers basketball ("To Jason Charles Barkely"), a note from Charles, and a bunch of assorted Sixers stickers. I don't know what happened to the rest, but the basketball is currently on top of our Philadelphia sports dedicated entertainment center, along with a Chase Utley bobblehead, a Donovan McNabb bobblehead, an Allen Iverson bobblehead, and I think Peter Forsberg represents the Flyers. I'd have to go check, but I'm too comfy. Anyway, I wish I'd kept the note. Oh well. Some of the stickers made their way onto various spots around the house, like the insides of closet doors (because who ever paints there!?). Definitely an exciting time, and now Charles Barkley will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame! That thing just shot up in value, but you don't ever, ever sell it because it's Charles Barkley for Pete's sake!! Oh, and it's to me... another "Jason" just wouldn't get the same satisfaction out of it.

The only channel I watch regularly now is the History Channel. I love Modern Marvels, Mega Disasters, and their special on the American Revolution, among a ton of other shows. I will watch Mail Call... hell, I watch anything on that channel. I used to be a Discovery / Learning Channel guy, and the History Channel is from the same blood, but I just find that THC has more of the stuff I'm interested in... all the time. And their paid programming doesn't kick on until 4am, which is huge for me during my time off :)

I used to hate rollercoasters

Long story short... my mom brought me on "Runaway Train" in Disney World when I was 3 (which I don't remember, and didn't cause my fear of rollercoasters), I didn't go on another rollercoaster until I was 20 or so, and even then I was forced, so really I still didn't like them. Then I didn't go on another one until today! I was still a little nervous, but since I've been on them before (and practically the same ones, being it's the same park [Dorney Park in Allentown]), I knew I could take it... after I've had some coffee.

I know, I know. "What a panzy!". STFU!! The thing that always scared me were the screamers. Actually, if a car went down the main drop and no one screamed, I told myself that they were too terrified to scream at all, and I definitely wasn't going on that rollercoaster! I got used to sitting and waiting for my brothers and parents, out by the exit of the ride. Later I would find out that you have to scream, lest your stomach will exit your body through your mouth, or so it felt.

Well today, being in great company (shout out GG, TG and Neysa!!), I sorta was forced again, but it wasn't a third party doing the forcing. I just said "I'm going on rollercoasters today and it's gonna f@%@#ing rock. F#@$@ did I just say that?!?!" I was still incredibly uneasy about the first ride, which happened to be "Hydra: The Revenge". If you've never been... be! You start out, go down about a 3 inch slope, and you're going about 5MPH, then all the sudden you're upside down! At 5MPH! It's Dorney Park's way of getting a little extra on top of the price of admission. When I got off the ride I noticed a dime on my seat. One of the lucky ones that didn't land into the net below the initial twist. After that, the next 4 or so coasters were easy. We went on that then Lazer, then went back to the free fall (I can't do that..) since Neysa was arriving then. Neysa and Gia did the free fall. This is how that went:

GG: How long do they usually keep you up here before dropping you?
Neysa: Usually not too long
.0001 seconds later WHOOSH
All aboard the free fall: AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

Eventually we made our way over to the Lazer again, and then the Comet (or whatever the wooden rollercoaster is called). Then we were determined to go on Steel Force. A mile later, we found the entrance. It's about 5 feet from the Lazer and Comet, but Tom didn't have his GPS with him. We found the Swan boats though.

At this point, it was about 300 degrees, and any water we had would evaporate as soon as it hit our lips. We had to do the log flume. Waiting in line, Gia and I were planning and scheming... "How can we do this? Do they allow 4 people on the boats?" ... "I think so!" ... "Oh look, they have 4 people!" ... "Oh but two of them are little kids"... "Ah there's one with 4 'bigger' people."... "Sweet! So we'll go shortest to tallest from front to back."... "Awesome, sounds like a plan!" The next flume comes, I hop in the back like I'm supposed to, being the tallest. Gia hops in right in front of me. Apparently, our brilliant plan wasn't communicated properly to Tom and Neysa since the chain was closed with them behind it, waiting for the next flume. Damnit! That was a good time though, I got soaked! I got soaked but not from the big drop.

Next, it was back to the Hydra for some more donations to the Dorney Park Feed the Workers Fund. They cleaned up on that ride. The next plan was for everyone to get their bathing suits on, except me of course... and head into the water park. Walking up in that direction, we noticed a ride that we hadn't yet donated to. It was "Talon", like an eagle, and you hang from the track, instead of riding on it.

Now having no fear, I was like "We have to ride that." Two volunteers, Neysa and Gia. Sweet. I sat in the middle. Neysa is an admitted screamer, Gia has a pretty strong set of lungs, but I was the loudest!! That ride was INSANE. The main thing about it is, from where we sat, towards the middle of the line, you can't see the track! Not even a little bit. So you have no idea what's coming. We were doing twists, corkscrews, and anything else that lunatic rollercoaster designers could throw at us. We started on an inverse loop (a loop, but you're on the bottom of the track since your feet hang down), and at the top, you twist. I screamed "What the F@#%@ was that?!?!" Gia will try to tell you other things I said, but she's lying :)

Phew. Long day! Well, that was only "a good portion" of it. We still had the water park to attend to! We entered, and Neysa said "I want to go on that". Everyone kept walking, I stopped and went in and we went on this inner tube / tube ride. First, I was fully clothed. Tan shorts (not a bathing suit), brown leather sandals, shirt. Luckily, I had emptied my pockets in the locker. We get to the top, and knowing that I rode in with Tom, and he has leather seats, I have to stay sorta dry. Basically, I can't submerge fully. Neysa goes into the tube and I heard her screaming for the whole minute before they let me in. I sit in the tube and I'm soaked, but still not fully submerged. My ass is though :) The guy says "Sir, I'm going to have to ask you to remove your sandals and hold on to them." Ok, fine. I lay them on my chest, and he gives me the "GO!!" signal. Now I find out why Neysa was screaming the whole time, other than her shameless admittance to being a screamer. Inside the tube is pitch black. There were no incredible surprises though, like 20 foot drops straight down or anything. Just a bunch of turns. I noticed that I've grown a lot since the last time I was on an inner tube, and if I sit the way I want to, my butt drags along, slowing me down to a crawl. This was unacceptable. So, I had to adjust my sitting style, by pushing my legs out and getting my ass off the ground! This would prove to be my downfall. After about a hundred turns in pitch black darkness, a light started to emerge about 30 feet away and a few feet below me. This is it, I thought. Time to stay dry! Sure thing, my tube hits the water in the pool and doesn't move, I fly off the tube and go completely under the water, now officially submerged. My sandals floated away like debris from a torpedoed cargo ship, evidence that something awful has happened here. I came up from the water and some little kid yelled "Dude that was AWESOME!!" Neysa's climbing out of the pool, looking back and laughing. It was surely a site! I am laughing now thinking back on it.

We went into the lazy river, but Tom, Gia and the other dude were waiting about 30 people ahead in line. It would be the last we would see of them. Neysa and I did one loop in the river, then hit the slides. They did 4 loops! Of course we didn't know that until we were leaving. Gia you should have come with us :) Later, our excuse was that we would climb to the top of different rides to see if we could see them anywhere. Obviously, we had to get down, so we just went down the slide rather than back down the steps :) We actually did end up seeing them from the top of the last ride we went on!

So, those were highlights from the day at Dorney Park. Good times everyone :) Let's do it again soon!