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5/29/09
I thought about driving out to New Hope to do some window-shopping today. But when I got to the Parkway, I took a look at all the cars lined up towards 287, gave some thought to whether I would actually buy anything out there, pondered the rain clouds, and decided to go to Menlo Park Mall instead. Of course, when I got there, I ended up in Barnes and Noble. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I picked up a few books, including Ernest Hemingway's A Moveable Feast, because how can you not love a book (about Paris) that starts with the line, "Then there was the bad weather"?

Distressing to see in the bookstore: MLB is producing pop-up books of baseball stadiums (stadia? stadii?) - they had a Fenway Park and a (new!) CitiField on display. Scary. And yeah, if there was a Yankee Stadium one, I would probably have bought it.

For the rest of my day, I'm going to curl up on the couch and read.

I'm relieved that now that Posada is back, the Yankees sent Kevin Cash (the other backup catcher) down to Scranton, and not Cervelli. Of course, when Molina comes back from the DL, I'm sure they'll move Cervelli, too, but at least it should be to Trenton then! Much closer than Scranton. Or they could just lose the useless Angel Berroa and keep Cervelli as a third catcher, but that's doubtful.

5/28/09
Season five of House comes out on DVD in August. Kickass.

5/27/09
I have to thank Missy Mink for teaching me how to play Spanish 21. Since I had no other plans today, I went down to Atlantic City to play a little. And I came home $800 richer than I left. Always a nice feeling. And I had a really good time playing.

As soon as I got home, I checked the movie times for Star Trek, and turned right back around to make the 7.30pm show. I really liked it - I was never a big ST fan - not that I disliked it, just that I never really watched any of it. So I was pleasantly surprised. The audience (all 25 or so of us) was laughing and "ahh"-ing every time one of the signature characters showed up or uttered a familiar stock line ("Dammit, Jim, I'm a doctor, not a physicist!"). Very fun time.

And the Yankees are tied for first place now! Finally!

5/26/09
Coworker Lori and I have been meaning to drop by coworker Julia's after work one of these days, since she's been out with some personal stuff. So we did a drive-by last night (we all live within five blocks of each other) but Julia's lights were all off. So instead, we camped out on my porch with the beers, and just hung out. Perfect way to spend a Spring night.

Today is rainy and cool, so I'm glad we took advantage of the nice weather.

Off tomorrow, I want to try and go see Star Trek and hit BJ's (got a coupon for Diet Coke, must use it).

5/24/09
The neighbors (the nice ones behind us, not the annoying ones next to us) are having a Memorial Day picnic in the backyard. They have tables with tablecloths set up, and jazz on the radio. It woke me up, and let me say, it was incredibly pleasant.

I was going to go up to Plainfield to see Eve and Kati, who's down from NH this weekend, but when I checked my email, Kati wrote that Eve is sick and she isn't feeling great either, so we had to cancel. I was looking forward to it, but then again, I slept til noon and was worried that I missed lunch already, so now I don't have to rush around today.

There's apparently a restaurant right here in Matawan that serves dim sum, and all of the reviews rave about how authentic and good it is. Embarrassingly enough, it's about a mile from our house. I'll have to check that out on my next weekend off.

Had a slight worry moment - apparently, my domain name (suck-my-big.org), which is registered with Network Solutions, expired last week because I didn't know I had to pay the bill. They had my Gold Street address and old email on file. So I had to spend some time on the phone with some tech guy (probably in India) to update my information, reset my password, and pay for the service for the next five years. Done. Back online.

5/23/09
Holiday weekend, bad time to drive. I thought the traffic would only be bad leaving the city, but it took us two and a half hours to get INTO the city to go to the game on Friday. And we lost, to top it off. I hate interleague play. I mean, not just because we lost, I hate it in general. And the Wild Card. Hate that, too. Anyway.

I stayed over at Dad's, since Tesse and I were hitting the Stadium today (with tix from my friend Kevin). We met up for dim sum in Chinatown, at Jing Fong on Elizabeth Street (just below Canal, highly recommend it). We were the only white folks in there (a good indicator of a great ethnic restaurant, according to my friend Peter), and we managed to try some new dishes as well as things we recognized. Stayed away from the chicken feet and the things that looked like squid, however. I am not that adventurous. Plus I had tried chicken feet at dim sum in San Francisco once, and when the poet talked about sucking the marrow out of life, I don't think he meant it literally.

After that (oh, and did I mention it was $20 for the two of us? Go eat there, it's terrific), we walked around Chinatown for a bit, found some nice inexpensive things, and then walked up to Muji and Uniqlo (not an American store in the lineup for us today) and stimulated the economy a bit.

The game was much better today, since we won in the bottom of the ninth, and the seats - on the Main level - were great. The only downer was the wind, it was chillier than we were expecting. At least it didn't rain!

Came home on the train, and watched Moulin Rouge - Ewan McGregor and Paris? Can't go wrong.

(And thank you Mets, for beating Boston so the Yankees are now tied for second in the AL East - not that that matters, see above comment on the Wild Card sucking - and we are actually ahead of Toronto in the loss column.)

5/21/09
Paris. April. It can't get here soon enough!

Nine in a row, baby.

5/20/09
Of course, having re-watched The Da Vinci Code and having seen Angels and Demons, it's time to start thinking about going back to Paris, and to Rome. I've been looking at apartment rental sites (cheaper than hotel, and there's a kitchenette or at least a hot plate). My favorite listing so far included the tidbit that "a ventilator is available in the event of hot seasons." Second favorite is the apartment "recently renovated in the Ikea style."

Love the Europeans.

5/19/09
Six in a row for the Yankees! And Cervelli batting something like .316 (as opposed to A-Rod batting something less than his weight). And now the Orioles come in (so we should be nine in a row by Thursday) and then interleague play starts. I'm just glad it's supposed to be sunny and 80 degrees on Friday.

5/18/09
Ooh, go vote for my picture to win Jane's contest, so I can win a really cool little camera. It's really easy - just go, look at the photos, and click on "vote" at the bottom of the list.

5/15/09
Holy cow - it didn't rain! Dad and I got to the ballpark in time to watch some BP from the field level (Oh, thank you, great Yankees owner gods, for letting the fans where they belong), and went to Monument Park, too. While we were watching BP, we sat in the overpriced cushy seats, let me tell you, they are comfortable. But not worth a thousand dollars.

The game was fantastic! Brett Gardner hit an inside-the-park home run (as they said in Take Me Out, "Not that I've ever seen an inside-the-ballpark home run"), and we won in the bottom of the ninth against the Twins' closer. Real nail-biter. I had the cheesesteak, it was almost as good as the one in Philly. And I say almost, because this is New York, not Philly.

I'm telling you: Francisco Cervelli = next Yankees captain.

Mom and I went to see Angels and Demons at the movies before I went to the game. I wanted to go today, since I don't have another free day for the next week and a half or so. I liked it, not as much as The Da Vinci Code, but it was totally enjoyable. The city of Rome looked stunning. Must go. And I have to say, I wished they had more of the book's intrigue in the movie, but then it would have been like four hours long!

later on 5/14/09
Yeah yeah, NOW they change the policy.

5/14/09
All fixed. New camera, same model, slightly better zoom, and it works with the same memory card and battery that I had from the old one. So now I have an extra battery and charger, and a functioning camera. Yay.

It's raining, and supposed to rain all day tomorrow. No kidding, since tomorrow is another Friday night game at the overpriced Stadium where you can't go down and watch batting practice because rich folks might get mad if you're standing near their seat. Not that the folks in the "luxury seats" are there to watch BP at all, but you know, mustn't let the riff-raff in. Can you tell I'm cranky? Two great ballpark trips in the past week, and it just makes you realize how some teams appreciate their fans. I hope the Yankees rethink things next season. Going down to watch BP is one of the things I enjoy most about going to games. Maybe next season I'll just get Orioles season tix instead.

Kidding.

Sort of.

5/13/09
Alfred Boe! He does still exist! Oh, happy happy.

Went to Philly for the day. We drove downtown to the Reading Terminal Market, which is all fresh food, Amish food, books, bath stuff etc. I love going there. We decided that we need to make a trip solely to go there and stock up on fresh stuff (that is, so we don't have to leave it in the car all day). And then, since we had time before the game, we walked over to Independence Mall just to look at the old buildings and relax a bit.

Jamie Moyer was going for his 250th win in the Phillies/Dodgers game. He didn't get it. The Phillies got slammed by the Dodgers, but it was still nice to go, have a cheesesteak, and laugh at the Phanatic. If you must have a mascot, he's the best one to have.

My camera is broken. I had the guy behind us take our picture, and when he was handing it back, it dropped and now it doesn't turn on. So I have to go get a new one (which is really a good excuse to get one with a better zoom).

Rain in the forecast for Friday. Figures.

5/11/09
Very bizarre ending for this season of House. I can't wait to see how it picks up next season (whenever that is).

I wanted so badly to buy a pair of chairs from Yankee Stadium (to maybe bolt to the floor in front of the TV). So I called Steiner Sports today - it was announced that they were going to handle the sales - and they told me that pairs of seats would range from $1500 to $4500 (depending on "presentation"), and that single seats (with "commemorative armrests") would start at $750. Once I picked up the phone and stopped laughing, I told the guy there was no way in hell those seats would grace my living room. That's outrageous. Right up there with a $6 hot dog and not being allowed down to field level to watch batting practice. I should just move to Baltimore and buy Orioles season tix at this rate.

Hrmph.

5/9/09
I'm sure that some day, I'll have a lousy trip to Baltimore, but it hasn't happened yet. This was another terrific trip. We stayed at the new Hilton Baltimore, which is right across from the ballpark. Literally. You walk out of the hotel and you're on Eutaw Street. Classy. We went to the ticket office to see if we could upgrade our seats. We had seats in the first row of the upper deck, but with A-Rod back and Cervelli catching, I asked if they had anything on the field level. So for a whopping $80/ticket (as opposed to $1200 at the Stadium), we were about 12 rows back, behind the Yankees dugout. Perfect.

While walking around the ballpark, we stopped in the area by Pickle's Pub, where all the food and drinks are, and there were these guys from Wisconsin selling foam syringes that said "A-Roid" on them. Of course I bought one. And of course I'll bring it to the Stadium next week.

So the game was fantastic - CC pitched a complete game shutout, A-Rod hit the first pitch he saw over the wall for a 3-run homerun, and Cervelli got his first MLB base hit. It was super.

And we had crabcakes. And it didn't rain!

Only downside is that the timer on our VCR didn't set to channel 3 for some reason, so I taped five hours of static instead of the game. Maybe it'll become a "Yankees Classic" and they'll re-run it. Because I really would have liked to see it with the commentary.

later on 5/7/09
I think every single person on the Yankees has been to the DL this season. And Mariano might as well be on the DL, the way he's pitching. But at least Francisco Cervelli got to play half the game today, as Molina joined the ranks of the walking wounded. Maybe he'll get to play full-time now, since I can't think of any big name catchers that we can get this year.

Off to Baltimore tomorrow. Bring on the crab cakes.

5/7/09
This week at work is stretching on forever. I have not even had time to enjoy a celebratory Cinco de Mayo beer. That will all change tomorrow, when I will be at Camden Yards in Baltimore (rain permitting) to see the Yankees lose to the Orioles. Fun fun. A-Rod is supposed to be back with the team. I should have saved some syringes from work to throw at him. I've never been huge A-Rod fan.

Manny! Loser! And so not-surprising.

The Onion reports: Slashed Ticket Prices Allow Lesser Nobility to Attend Yankees Games. I'm so glad my seats are in the nosebleeds, where we're paying $20/ticket and best of all, are protected from the rain.

Today - this very minute at least - the rain has stopped. I had a dream that I fell into a mud pit created by all of the rain, and it wouldn't be too far-fetched if it came true.

5/5/09
OK, the week of rain can stop now. But the grass in the yard looks great! My little outfield is staring to sprout.

I am happy and sad today. Happy because the Yankees called up Francisco Cervelli to the majors, since Posada hurt his hamstring. Sad for the same reason, because now he won't be in Trenton so I can ogle from up close! But I wish him the best of luck. Also sad about the freaking Red Sox winning the first five games against the Yanks. You'd think the world was coming to an end.

later on 5/1/09
Despite the rain (which was so heavy at times that I nearly pulled over on the Turnpike when I was driving in), it was a great game. Of course, any game that we win in the bottom of the ninth is a great game. My friend MJ and I had a blast - especially mocking the incredibly slow service at the food vendors - and enjoyed being out of the rain, under the overhang.

The Ace of Cakes crew was there to present this huge cake that looks like the Stadium. I love their show on the Food Network. You could see CC Sabathia sneaking sidelong glances at the cake. He probably snuck a little icing when he thought no one was looking.

5/1/09
It's Friday, the Yankees are home (and hence, I have tickets), and it's threatening to rain. Are you shocked? I'm not. Get to test out the rain-protective-ness of the facade, as I sit under it, and not out in the elements.

Whatever happened to tenor Alfred Boe, who sang Rodolfo in Baz Luhrman's la Boheme on Bway in 2002? Never heard of him again.

-catherine

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