Friday, June 26, 2009

Final Installment of Coldplay videos

As promised previously, the 3rd and final installment of 3 videos. Coldplay, "Life in Technicolor II", with lyrics playing and their official video. It's animated and quite entertaining. I love this song. Rock on Coldplay..

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Death and taxes on Coffee?

The above picture is the chemical formula for Caffeine. The last, greatest, untaxed mind altering substance consumed by over 80% of the worlds' population on a daily basis...whether through coffee, tea, soda or chocolate. It is one of the oldest, natural legal stimulants. Since taxes are currently being added to just about everything (cell phones charges are on the list, cities taxing more waste services, and plastic/paper grocery bags)I hope they don't look at caffeine as the next drug to tax. I'm sure it's been considered. I hope it's not the next tax target. Talk about erupting a Boston Tea/Coffee party! Caffeine Consumers of the World Unite! I am enjoying my morning coffee right now. It is easing me into the day. Can you imagine 8% being added onto your frappucino bill? (I don't have to worry about that I just drink plain coffee and iced coffee...)

I had the fortunate pleasure to be taken to my favorite small batch roastery yesterday. Indian River Espresso and Coffee Co. in Millsboro, DE. Dennis Lasher is the roastmaster, and a great one at that. Fresh coffee was being roasted right in front of me and other customers. The aromas were amazing. I picked up some coffee with an origin in Timor, a dark roast. Some Kenya Peaberry beans and Dennis threw in some Indian Robusta beans...they have twice the caffeine as an arabica bean, however robusta beans are not considered as high quality. The beans were glistening with oils and are very fragrant. I can't wait to enjoy these roasts at home. Dennis made an iced coffee for me with a shot of espresso (Timor roast beans), water, ice and cream. It was the best I've had a in a long time. It really made me realize how storebought and even quality franchise coffee is just not as good as fresh roasted coffee from a local roastery. If you have a local roastery near you be sure to give their beans a try and support such a local enterprise.

The sun is shining, it's not raining and I'm hoping it's going to be a great day. Carpe Diem.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Things I really miss..

We've had many straight days of rain here in Jersey, on and off and it's giving me some cabin fever and longings for time's past. It's got me thinking about things I really miss that I was day dreaming of recently.

1. Great concerts. I still reflect on seeing U2 at the old JFK stadium in Philly (since torn down) during their Joshua Tree Tour back in 1987. It was the best concert I've been was magical, ethereal and the energy in the crowd was intense. I still remember the ambience of the whole crowd singing "I still havn't found what I'm looking for". Which has become a life anthem of sorts for me.
My second favorite concert was seeing The Replacements play during my senior year at Rutgers at the gymnasium on College Ave. Iggy Pop opened up and it was a feast of musical excellence. The whole crowd danced and a minor mosh pit was formed with a few stage dives. It was in about 1992 or 1993. I still like Paul Westerbergs solo work since the Replacements broke up.

2. I wish I could go on vacation to Hilton Head Island and stay at the Hyatt at Palmetto Dunes resort. Our family vacationed when I was a kid at Sea Pines and Palmetto Dunes. I have great memories of Hilton Head. I understand it has become very over-developed in recent years and is not as quaint as it used to be..seems to be happening all over. Something great gets discovered by Everyone and then loses its charm. I feel the same way about Long Beach Island, NJ, it just got way too over-developed and the charming seafood restaurants became sterile, cookie cutter and "Disneyfied" into a plastic remnant of what they once were.

3. I miss St. Louis. I had a wonderful 90+ year old home that was all brick and hardwood floors with a big yard. I paid 93k in 2000. Can't touch anything like that on the east coast for less than 400k or more. I miss the Starbucks on the Delmar Loop by Washington University. The great people watching. The used record store Vintage Vinyl had great deals on used lp's and cd's. I met a girl I dated briefly at the laundrymat a block away. I miss the great architecture of St. Louis, the friendly mid-western demeanor not present in the east coast, Forest Park, South St. Louis and all it's cool neighborhoods like Grand St. I used to relax at Mokabe's cafe, they catered to a lesbian crowd but they allowed a token hetero like me in once in a while as long as I was a paying cappucino drinker. The outside patio with tables and chairs was a great place to smoke cigarettes, drink coffee and watch people while flipping through the local paper of events, The Riverfront Times. I miss the bbw's of the area, the finest in the country in my opinion. A big shout out to all the lovely bbw's in Missouri and Southern Illinois. The east coast can't touch your charm.

4. I miss long conversations with many old friends, in person, not by email or phone. I wish Kevin, Michael, Seth, Rey, Kevin, Rob, Raymee, Mike and others were around the block so I could hang out with them. People move, times change and life goes on. I always miss old friends and learn to appreciate what each had uniquely to offer as a friend as time goes on. I miss you all. I love my current close group of friends and am blessed to have them. I will also miss those who have slid into the distant rear view mirror of life.

5. Right now I'm really missing Gunny the dog. His owners picked him up yesterday after I watched him for about 2 weeks. I miss him. He was a great canine companion and a friend. It really makes me want to get a dog of my own in the future. I think having a dog brings a lot of joy to life and is great for the soul. I was sad washing out his water bowl and food dish today knowing I won't see him for some time. The new apartments I will be moving to don't allow dogs! Only cats. Shame on them. I'm calling the ACLU for a dog discrimination suit, I'm sure they can find something in the Constitution protecting dog lovers, or at least they should! How mean can they be not allowing dogs? Yeah I know, you say well rent somewhere else or buy a place of my own.. I plan on saving to buy a place, I much prefer being a home or condo owner and then I can have a dog with a nice little back yard for him/her to walk around in.

6. I miss a lot of other things right now, too many to count. I'm going to take my mind off that and focus on the nice things I do have right now. I have healthy loving parents, several good friends, plenty of food to eat, I'm not broke (well not totally), I have a new job I'm about to start that I'm totally grateful for, I have tons of travel and life experiences under my belt and if I would just quit smoking cigs and lose more weight I'd be pretty darn healthy too! So I thank God for all the blessings I do have. I wish my father a very Happy Father's Day! Thanks for bringing me into this great but at times crazy world. And thank you for all the great things you have done for me over the years. I wish for many more great years ahead of happiness and health.

Peace to Jah. Enjoy the day!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Health kick while watching the dawg...

I am fortunate enough to be watching my brother's girlfriend's dog Gunny again! He is the dog pictured on the right. I really think of Gunny as part of the family now, not just Julee's dog. He is the nicest dog. He is napping on my couch right now, chillin' out. When he's not excited about eating he is sound asleep napping....hey that sounds like someone else I live with! Gunny even let me sleep in without waking me. He does like to get up earlier than I do. He's a morning dog, I am a night dawg.

My switch to green tea and other teas is going well. I just had a refreshing glass of iced tea, a blended fusion. A mix of Trader Joes green tea, Whole Foods 365 Yerba Mate with green tea, and Yogi Tea's superantioxidant green tea. With a slice of fresh squeezed lemon and sweetened with a packet of stevia from Trader Joes. I sure am getting used to stevia in my coffee and tea. I like it. At first it had a little aftertaste but not anymore. I like to think the antioxidants, polyphenols and catechins are obsorbing and nuetralizing all the other bad things I put in my body like the nicotine and tar. Maybe it will even out? Maybe not?

I got on my health kick the other day and went to both Trader Joes and Whole Foods Market. And thanks to Lesley for mentioning to me, that WF's has stevia sweetened beverages. I tried a sort of diet-cola, called Zevia. It is a natural soda, sweetened with the stevia leaf, tartaric acid from fruit instead of phosporic acid and natural flavors. It is quite good cold on ice. I will be purchasing it again. It costs more than regular diet soda but it was very good and I did not have to go on a chemical detox to get it out of my system. Zevia comes in several flavors like root beer and orange. I've only tried the diet cola, very good stuff! There website is That's my unpaid endorsement speech.

During my health kick shopping spree I also picked up some organic pears, dried cranberries (love them!), Kefir yogurt beverage (need my probiotics once in a while..), organic bananas, organic almonds (love nuts! Takes one to know one), organic milk, and 100% cranberry juice not from is some strong stuff, needs to be cut with water. I'm feeling healthier just thinking about all these yummy goodies.

I also snuck in an organic energy drink that tastes great but is a little pricy. Steaz Energy drink, berry flavor. It has natural sugars, green tea, guarana, yerba mate and acai juice. Very tasty indeed. I only buy energy drinks occasionally, maybe once a month. I admit to liking the diet Rock Star energy drink, but I'm sure I'd read the ingredients today and pass on it. The Steaz brand is a healthier alternative. Caffeine, guarana, yerba mate, teas, sugar...can anyone say legal "Stimulants"!

So it's a partial health kick. More in the right direction. I need to remember to eat my vegetables and drink plain water as well. And if I can add on a regular excercise routine I'll be completely open for bid-ness. We are all works in progress.