December 2010 Archives

I've Been In Hibernation Mode

| No Comments

Well, what a year 2010 has been.

I had my first full year with Rocco, and it has been good and bad. The good is that he's a great dog, who is very smart and playful. He doesn't bark. Just sighs a lot when discontent. Belly rub fixes that. The bad is that dogs are expensive. The vet bills & dog walker bills cost more than I expected. Worth it? Sure. He's a great companion, and I never feel alone with him around.

Life has been pretty steady. I haven't been blogging as much because, well, things have been kind of normal lately. But I will throw out a few things here, because if you are still reading my blog you must be wondering what i'm up to.

Dozzino's: This is a new "artisanal" pizza shop in Hoboken. I would like to go back a few more times before writing a real review, but my first impression is simple: it's wonderful to look at and eat, but spending $20 on pizza and soup is a bit silly. We had their lentil soup appetizer and it was o u t s t a n d i n g. We shared two of their pizzas and they were good. Not great. Good. It is a BYOB, and we just had tap water - total bill with tip was $40 for two people. Will I go back? Sure. Will I go back more than two times a year? I doubt it. I'm not sure if there is a 'simple' fix here. I mean, I live a block from Grimaldi's on Clinton. If I was in the mood for pizza like this, i'd head to Grimaldi's. Unless the pizza was far superior, i'd go there, but its not. I love what they did with the place, I really do. I wish more restaurants looked as cool as Dozzino's. It's not that it is overpriced - its equally priced with other equally as good places like Grimaldi's or Napoli's who also make brick oven pizza in Hoboken. If Dozzino set itself apart from the pack...then there's something to write about. I'm sure if I lived with a three block radius of the place, i'd eat there just as much as I do for Grimaldi's, which is probably every other month or so.

Village Pourhouse: I think it is a understatement that this bar has been a great success story in its first month. They are bar owners who "get it" - they understand what customer service means. They have had their share of lumps in the first month too -- there was a few slips they made when billing me, that I had to fix. But that was the bartenders slip up and the management did a good job fixing some minor issues. My only complaint about the place is that it is always packed & the food is good, but I often spend more money than i'd like eating and having a few Pacifico beers. I'd rather get a sandwich from Park & Sixth and a six pack of Pacifico and eat at home. Maybe I sound cheap, but spending $30 for a sandwich and two beers at Pourhouse just isn't worth it for me more than once every other month.

Pacifico: Technically known as "Cerveza PacĂ­fico Clara". This is my new favorite beer. My brother turned me on to this over the summer and it has replaced Yuengling or Corona as my favorite beer. It is available at Sparrow and other larger beer shops. Buy it. Make sure it's ice cold and have a burger with it. It's fucking fantastic. Yes, FUCKING fantastic - not just "regular" fantastic. I have to beg Paul at Mulligan's to get this beer behind the bar.

Gym: Seems like every year from October to January i'm in hibernation mode. Thinking about joining Crossfit: Hoboken. After working out at Club H for the last four years I know "how" to lift. But I always plateau. Also tried to do the condo gym, but i'm just someone who does better when forced to go to the gym. My only issue is that I wish Crossfit was located where Club H was located, which was perfect for me - I'd come of the PATH, hit the gym, and go home. Now, i'd go home -- lose motivation and can see myself skipping it. I have to do something because its amazing how quickly I lose muscle and gain flab when I stop working out. My diet hasn't helped either. Damn you, Pacifico!

2010 has been a good year. Here's to even a better 2011. I hope all of you are safe and happy in the coming year, and just remember to enjoy life. There's always the belief that things can be put off for another day - but if you wait too long it may disappear. I try to keep reminding myself that every morning. Carpe Diem!


Please, examine the facts:

1. Even with three OUTSTANDING pitchers and Jayson Werth, we couldn't buy a hit against the Giants. Adding Cliff Lee isn't going to help the Phillies offense issues.

2. Going on blind faith to "hope" Domonic Brown will step up next season is moronic. Sure, I like the kid, but after he went 1 for 32 in the Dominican Leagues, says that he may need a bit more work. Platooning him with Ben Francisco, again, is sort of like putting all your life's savings on red at the roulette table. Good luck with that.

3. Losing Werth didn't help us offensively, and even hurt more that we lost a right handed bat. We need a right handed bat to offset our heavily favored left swinging lineup.

4. Lots of contracts up in 2011: Ibanez, Rollins, Hamels, Madson, Lidge (1.5M buy out). I expect someone will get traded, and already rumors are swirling about Cole Hamels getting traded.

5. Don't be so sure about Blanton being traded if we don't move Hamels. He's signed with the Phillies through 2012 and we are paying him $8.5 million a year - i'd keep Blanton if we don't move Cole Hamels. We still will need a number 4 and number 5 pitcher, folks.

6. Please shut up about trading Ibanez. Even if we could trade him we are going to have to pay the majority of his salary - and still need to replace his bat with someone. Phillies will be smart and just suck it up for 2011.

7. Payroll with Lee is now around $166M. We still need to sign our bench/utility players and bullpen pitchers for 2011. Looking at a $200M payroll. Most Phillies fans don't care about that, but the bottom line is that the Phillies are a business. Ticket & concession prices will have to go up to compensate for that.

If I were the Phillies I would trade Cole Hamels for an outfielder that bats right. Look to groom Ben Francisco or Domo Brown over 2011 to replace Ibanez by 2012. Sign Madson for 3 more years. Hug J-Roll and wish him good luck in 2012 on his new team.

Hey, that's just me. What do YOU think we should do?

French Press: One of the cooler things I have bought is a Bodum French Press.

Way back when, I used to brew my coffee in the morning with coffee maker, put it in a thermos and carry it to work. The coffee was OK. Some days I would treat myself and get Dunkin Donuts coffee, but hated paying almost $3 for a large cup of coffee.


At work one day I watched a co-worker offering coffee from his French Press, and I was blown away. It was delicious and simple. And cheap!120210.jpg

I walk over to Empire Coffee in Hoboken or McNulty's on Christopher Street every other week and buy whole bean roasts and it costs me from $4 to $18 per 1/2 pound depending on the region. That will last me two, maybe three weeks. 15 days can cost me about $45 dollars from buying Dunkin Donuts everyday.

Then, I bought on Amazon.com a Krups coffee grinder, and it works great.

My morning routine is simple, before I leave my house for work I grind my coffee and take it into the office in a Ziploc bag. My French Press is in the office, at my desk. I add my coffee to the pot and fill the French Press with the hot water in our company kitchen. I stir it and let it sit for 4 minutes. That's it. Coffee is ready, and it's a trillion times better than what my company has sitting in the kitchen and better than Dunkin Donuts coffee (buy the Jamaican High Mountain Blue coffee if you don't believe me!)

At the end of the day, I clean the French Press simply by pouring out the old grinds and a quick clean under running water, letting it air dry on my desk for the next day. Once a week I take it home and put it in the dishwasher. If you are like me and work in an office, and have access to these things, you will save a TREMENDOUS amount of money a day by not buying coffee. Plus, if you love Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts, just buy their coffee and brew it yourself. You will taste the difference.

PATH Train Teddy

| No Comments

Many years ago, a local blog wrote about PATH Train Teddy. Here's Teddy in action.

I'm all for giving to charity.

This year I gave to Charity: water and to the Red Cross.

But in case you encounter Teddy, here's what you need to know.

1. There's no such organization as the Bergen Lafayette Coalition To Feed The Homeless. I called various shelters and they never heard of it, but some have heard of Teddy.
2. I called the PATH Police (201-216-6078) about Teddy. The officer I spoke to knows Teddy, he's always on the PATH - and said to call them or use the public phones if he's panhandling.
3. Giving money to homeless exacerbates the problem. If you want to give money, there are PLENTY of local shelters I need this holiday season. I recommend:

http://www.bowery.org/
http://www.nycares.org/
http://www.thehopeprogram.org/
http://www.doe.org/
http://www.hobokenshelter.org/

A few people have commented things like:

Q: Why is it important to throw a homeless guy in jail???
A: It's not what i'm asking for here. You may think that Teddy just wants a cup of coffee or some food - there are legitimate homeless shelters all over the tri state area ready to feed and house the homeless. More often than not homeless ask for money because of alcohol or drug related issues. You aren't helping them by feeding that addiction.

Q: Come on I feel guilty! What does it hurt to give .25 cents to a guy?
A: Wouldn't you feel 10x better and give to the Hoboken Shelter instead?

Q: Put yourself in his shoes! Imagine BEGGING for money.
A: I can imagine it, but I have seen him begging for money for 16 years, since 1994. He used to be a middle aged guy and wore a Medicaid card around his neck to look legitimate. I used to give him money, too. Once I did a bit of research I found out that the organization didn't exist and he was lying to people. Look, if he was homeless and just said so, I wouldn't have as big of a problem as someone who claims to be collecting for a shelter. Once I called the shelters they told me that no one collects money on a train like that, and even THEY said not to give him money. It was an eye opener.

So this holiday season, give to actual organizations and not PATH train Teddy.

Pages

Powered by Movable Type 4.23-en

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from December 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

November 2010 is the previous archive.

January 2011 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Join Zipcar and get $25 in free driving!