So this is Christmas…

28 11 2006

…we’ve finally reached the time of year where it is acceptable to be wishing people a “Merry Christmas” (lest the PC police strike–then it be “Happy Holidays”…I’m fine with either really). We’ve gotten past the joys of Turkey Day (unless you live in the McCarthy household, then it is “Pork on Rice and Potatos with Carrots Day) and can now break out the Christmas decorations (my tree went up the Friday after Thanksgiving…as it always will) and the Christmas Music as well. I love Christmas music and I enjoy making a new Christmas CD each year with songs, appropriate to the season, that I either have forgotten about or just discovered. This years disc will include two new finds from Jimmy Eat World. I discovered a couple weeks ago on iTunes that JEW has a Christmas EP with two songs entitled “If You Were Born Today” and “Last Christmas”, and they are both quite good. I don’t know if any of you are all that into Christmas music, but once I’ve completed “Nick’s Christmas Jams 2006” I will be glad to share it (just leave a request in the comments). Also if you have any suggestions for this year’s edition leave those as well.

Other things are happening at this wonderfully busy time of year. Most recently my brother, Andrew, became engaged to his wonderful girlfriend April. Also Brian and Stephanie are quickly going to be ready to bring Asher Paul into the world.

New lives of all kinds are beginning and that isn’t even the greatest thing about Christmas. The birth of a humble child into the arms of uncertain parents, and the ensuing display of unconditional love makes all that happens this time of year special. I hope we remember that.

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Bond Is Back

20 11 2006

Pop up your corn and kick back with some Twizzler’s it is time for a “Nick’s Flicks Movie Review”.

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James Bond is back. With this weekend’s release of “Casino Royale” the 21st installment in the James Bond film anthology, it is very clear that everyone’s favorite secret agent is back with a vengeance. James Bond is played masterfully, in this film, by newcomer Daniel Craig (replacing a somewhat smarmy Pierce Brosnan). This movie gives a much needed revving of the Aston-Martin engine to this franchise that in recent years has missed its mark in making a realistic spy/action movie (reference the “invisible car” from Die Another Day). Perhaps the most outstanding feature in this newest Bond thriller is Bond himself. Daniel Craig plays James Bond the way he was meant to be portrayed. Tough, smirky, and somewhat detached. Watching the movie there are plenty of times when you get clear, almost vintage feeling, flashes of Sean Connery (the mark by which all Bonds will always be judged). The movie follows 007 at the earlier stages of his career as he becomes a “double-oh” and as we witness some events that go on to shape who he is. Some other highlights of the movie included: Judi Dench reprising her role as “M” (Bond’s superior at MI-6), the Aston-Martin (spectacular in any form), and Jeffrey Wright in a suprise cameo as a Bond compatriot from way back. Do yourself a favor (especially you guys out there) and go see Casino Royale. Now that Bond has turned 21 it looks like he has finally reached the appropriate age for that vodka martini (“Shaken or stirred, sir?”…”Do I look like I give a damn?”). Here’s hoping the powers that be will see fit to give us some more of this kind of Bond.





I Said, It’s Great to Be an Auburn Tiger…

19 11 2006

22-15 = 5 in a row!

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It’s Raining It’s Pouring…

15 11 2006

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…if only I could be home snoring.

I haven’t updated in a week now so that means it’s time for some more banality from my world for you all to read about. As most of you were aware last Friday was my birthday (for those of you keeping score at home I am now 28 years young…”I was born in 1978…OH MY GOD!!”). I had a wonderful weekend spent with both friends and family, and Laura (whom we shall now acknowledge as “Mrs. Wonderful”) gave me an iPod for my birthday, and I am totally stoked about it!! Now I just need to get every accesorie ever made and then I’ll be set.

This weekend is the “Big Game”. Like every year Auburn fans started calling the radio shows and playing up the “poor timid us” card and acting like they might not win so that if they don’t then it doesn’t look like they are being cocky, they can then say “well we knew we were going to lose”. I say bump that. Auburn is going to thoroughly dominate this coming Saturday against Alabama and I will even go so far as to predict the final score will be Auburn 35 & Alabama 14.

Christmas is coming and I am VERY EXCITED. I love this time of year. And my first glimpse of seasonal joy came last Sunday morning when I stopped at Starbucks on the way to church and noticed that they have put up the “red menus” and the red holiday cups are now being distributed. Christmas music is right around the corner (which by the way I found two Jimmy Eat World Christmas songs on iTunes that I didn’t know existed but will be purchasing for “Nick’s Christmas Jams vol. 2006).

and Finally…

The new Foo Fighters CD “Skin and Bones” is EXCELLENT. It is a live acoustic CD filled with a few old favorites as well as more recent songs. The versions of “My Hero” (still my favorite Rock and Roll possibly of all time) and “Times Like These” both stand out even in their unplugged forms. Check it out.





An Open Letter to Newly Elected Democrats

8 11 2006

Dear Deomcrats:

First of all congratulations on your big win! Secondly, DON’T BLOW THIS!! I know that with the euphoria you are experiencing right now it would be easy to slip up and make some silly mistakes and then blame it on “we’re rusty, it’s been a while” kind of reasoning. Don’t do it. Just because you are really happy (and understandably a little drunk), from celebrating your victory, you have no cause to go make a pass at the coat check girl because she “seemed cute and old enough at the time”. You will have to wake up and deal with that consequence in the morning. It would better for you to graciously accept your victory and call it a night because work is going to start early (in January), better yet you could volunteer to be the designated driver for all of your drunken Republican friends (who are clearly drowning their sorrows of having to leave ‘grandpa’s’ house early in order to go home and do their chores). That would be nice and responsible of you (even partisan I would think).

Now as the ecstasy (ONLY FIGURATIVE) of your win wears off you might find it easy in the hallowed halls of government to do what “the other guys” did. Please resist that temptation. In order to help, I have compiled a list of “Helpful Hints” for you to use as a primer until you get reacquainted with life at the top.

1) Do Not Mess with the pages, interns, wives of co-workers, children of co-workers, or really anyone who looks to be under 35 years old. We’ll call this “Foleyosis”, it’s bad you don’t want it.

2) Try to remember that education shapes this country’s future, yes “No Child Left Behind” sounded great at the beginning, but “No Initiative Properly Funded” is the shape we are in.

3) Yes it is okay to talk about health insurance. There are PLENTY of people in this country that need it, and sadly the only people that are given a constitutional guarantee of getting it are federal inmates. Don’t make the little children commit crimes just to get a flu shot.

4) When it comes time for the State of the Union please remember to stand up and clap at the appropriate times when the President is speaking. It will make him feel good, is basically good manners, and heck he might even give you a nickname (how does “Demmy” sound, or maybe “MoCrat”…I hear the President loves the song “MoCrat Love”).

5) Guys who wear dark trench coats and big hats that try to offer you money DO NOT have your best interest in mind. Sure it seems great at the time, but when the FBI pulls 90 large out of your freezer in the garage you’re gonna have some ‘splainin’ to do.

6) Try to play the game “Let’s Not Make the Daily Show Today” as often as you can (this is kind of like the ‘quiet game’). Jon Stewart himself said he would be pleased if the government would perform in a manner that would leave him without a job. So far he hasn’t been so lucky.

and finally

7) Remember if you are really good, and you eat all your vegetables (leave the pork on the table for something important), and you go to bed on time (by yourself or with your spouse…not someone elses) you just might get to sit in the big boy chair in two years.

Best of luck to you (new Democrats), make us proud!





Super Tuesday

7 11 2006

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Today is the day to vote. Go vote! We are one of a minority of nations around the world where the citizens at large have the ability to shape the make up of our government. Voting isĀ  our civic duty. Go vote!





The Way I See It #172

1 11 2006

According to the Federal Reserve Bank, $1 spent on excellent preschool education saves $7 in special education, social service, and future incarceration costs more than a dozen years later. Are we, as citizens, willing to elect government leaders who spend our taxes on something that offers a return so far in the future? I hope so.

–Rob Waldron

President and CEO of Jumpstart, a national nonprofit early education organization.

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I’m just in from vacation and it was wonderful (more on that with pictures coming soon). Last night was a busy Halloween with Trunk or Treats happening at the church, etc…

Like Stephanie mentioned not too long ago, I am tired of ‘pre-election hype’. I’m sick to death of slur campaigns and mudslinging, I’ve grown weary of not hearing about one single issue (except “they will raise your taxes”) and instead hearing about who someone got money from, or why they support ‘drunk driving’. Do we really think someone’s political position is “sure drunk driving is great” you should try it any chance you get? Americans are dumb but we aren’t that dumb. And I really hope people in this country are smart enough to not just base their vote on whether or not someone will raise their taxes. We need to take into account things like having the lowest tax rate in the country, or what are these taxes going to (education? yes please, i’ll pay more for that). And for the record, a campaign ad (yes one I’ve heard on the radio today) that says “I refuse to stoop to the level of my opponent by saying negative things” is saying the same basic thing when you include that opponents name in the ad multiple times. It is like saying “I’m not going to talk bad about people but Joe Smith he loves to do that, so don’t think that I am as bad a person as Joe Smith, because I am not. I am better than Joe Smith because I don’t talk bad about people the way Joe Smith does”. I wish the election would just be over so people would go back to ‘working’ and not trying to look better than someone else. And for the love of Mike, for the last time, just because you are against the war doesn’t mean you are against the troops or for the ‘enemy’.

I think I got more soapbox just now than I wanted to be. Have a great Wednesday and I’ll try to post about my trip tomorrow for those who are interested.