Tuesday, March 28, 2006

trip to NYC

As a public service to all those seeking pedicures, I am happy to report that the outer boroughs of NYC have the best and cheapest. OK I really dont know that for a fact, what I do know is that the pedicures are awesome and cheap compared to nova and cville.

I honestly havent been pedicuring that long so my experience is not that broad. The most I paid for a pedicure was prior to my wedding- $45 at Bristles. Mary told me it was worth it and it was- think paraffin and this wonderfully exhilirating mint lotion. Cheapest prior to my NYC experience was $25- which was in Falls Church (Idylwood Plaza). Mostly I pay around $30 for one in Virginia, of course none of those prices include tip.

SO how delighted was I when two years ago Wendy told me about the cheap pedicures available in NYC? How is that even possible, everything is more expensive in NYC? Marina and I immediately planned a trip to investigate the validity of W's claim. Happily we discovered the claim is true. I paid $15 for a pedicure in Dec. 2004 and in March 2006.

Call the Starlight Express, book a trip to the outer boroughs of NYC and get a pedicure (tip generously). Or just the next time you happen to be in the area visiting family, plan a spontaneous trip to the nail salon. A fun time will surely be had at an extremely reasonable price.

5th District caucus is upcoming

When? I dont know. I have signed up with one campaign to be a delegate, but I havent heard anything from them. Too bad really, I like that candidate a lot.

So this evening, I am preparing dinner (not even interesting enough to describe) and I get a phone call from Josh. Now I dont know who Josh is, but we talk,
'are you planning on coming to the caucus?' yes
'will you support Al Weed, Bern Ewert or are you undecided?' ... 'undecided'
'do you know that Al Weed has run four times and lost, lets not give him a fifth opportunity to lose' no comment
'can I send you some material in the mail?' sure

It is effective. However, this election may be different. With a little sunshine, the public may not approve of Virgil Goode's involvement in the Abramhoff scandal. I am not sure anyone could have beaten Goode prior to this year. Even this year he may be invincible, once the caucus is over, the political winds may be more obvious.

Hopefully the Dems dont hurt themselves too much in the run up to the caucus.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Croutons

For my 100th post, I thought I should discuss very important worldly matters. Just then though, I ate a salad at Sticks. Ok I have been eating Sticks salads for months, they are delicious. I usually have the Steak with the lime-cilantro dressing. I digress, the single best ingredient is the crouton. They are tiny and flavorful and add A LOT to this otherwise demure salad.

Anyway, Sticks croutons have helped me enjoy salads a lot more. I have been eating lots of salad lately, usually lettuce, red pepper and cucumbers, with a little dressing (except when I was in NYC, we added tomato, avocado and feta and made our own dressing- very satisfying). Well, add some whole wheat croutons (serving size 6 croutons) and it adds some pizzaz to a meal that can easily be boring. Sadly I ran out of my Pepperidge Farm WW croutons, only to be replaced by no name fat free (DONT DO IT). I will be shopping again soon for those delicious PF croutons. If only Sticks would market their croutons. OK I have spent enough time on this topic. Anoop mentions Sticks in a post today.

Signs, stickers & swag oh my

Annoying Schilling signs have been posted in this city since before the Republican primary (way back in February). I have seen exactly two stickers for Norris/Taliaferro on the back of cars and no signs.

Someone told me the Democratic party doesnt like to hand out the stickers/signs too early. I have no confirmation that is true, but it sure seems like it. What is 'too early' the election is May 2, 5 weeks! RELEASE THE SIGNS PEOPLE!

Also make them look better, the two stickers I saw did not demonstrate enthusiasm. Frankly it feels like Schilling may have this race locked up- the only question is Dave or Julian? WITHOUT SIGNS NO ONE KNOWS!

Voters need something to get to the polls on May 2, if Schilling appears to be winning the sign war then less likely dem supporters will show up. I know the counterargument: people wont show up if it seems like a cakewalk for the dems. I have to say at this point we have a horserace and voter turnout is going to be key.
I am not a political consultant- but is downright depressing to drive/walk/bike this city and see so many signs for Schilling and NONE for Norris/Taliaferro.

I have concerns at this point at the commitment of the cville democratic party to get Norris AND Taliaferro elected, should we just start printing our own?

I am just not sure what the party is doing if they cant even release signs for the political candidates within two months of the election...help me understand.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Jeff Cup

Blue Wheel sponsors the first bike race of the season- The Jefferson Cup right here in Charlottesville. Very exciting time was had by all. The race is held off Rt. 20 between Cville and Scottsville. Thankfully the weather was good and no accidents happened during Chris's race (phew).

Chris had an awesome break at during lap two per 'the plan' (a plan I knew nothing about). Sean got photos, I will post if he sends them to me. Really exciting stuff to see him cornering and breaking away from this 50 person pelaton. Of course he was spent after that so the next lap wasnt as glorious...but he did finish and his teammates were appreciative.

Happily the boys were well-behaved. It helps when there are other children to play with (sticks & dirt help too).

Next race- time trial Wintergreen in May sponsored by Cville Bike and Tri.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Baseball News

Soriano is to play left field. Wow- really!? Can you imagine...getting paid 10 million dollars to play baseball, then not wanting to go along with management's decision to put you in left field. I mean you still get to play baseball and get paid, even though you have no discernible fielding and hitting abilities anymore.

Now that the World Series of Baseball is over, what good can you say about baseball? Like Mike says players just have no heart, Soriano proves it- if he had heart, he would play no matter where coach put him. BTW- I was a Soriano fan back when he was good, but I was very disappointed with his recent WSB play and post-season play in general- he just doesnt have the swing/eye like he used to.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Charlottesville Radio

I am addicted to talk radio, primarily of the NPR, BBC variety available through local public radio stations. When I left cville there were no talk shows available, now Radio IQ has succesfully replaced the shows of WAMU I listened to for years in Northern Virginia. I surprised myself though because NOW I listen to another talk show between 4-6 weekdays, Charlottesville...Right Now on WINA AM 1070.

Coy Barefoot is the host and he does a good job. Of course I know Coy from way back (who doesnt?), he wasnt nearly as responsible then and not the 'best selling author and historian' he is now. He is an upright citizen now- I guess I am too (my how things change).

I love the opportunity for fellow c'ville residents to spout off, I appreciate hearing the opinions of my neighbors (I think that is why I like blogging). Coy also usually has a blogger on, recently Waldo, Kenton Ngo, & Commonwealth Conservative. Also Kevin Lynch, Bob McDonnell, and Rob Bell have been interviewed. I have never heard anything more than a sound bite from Rob & Bob so it is a public service to have extended interviews with these fellows.

It is nice to have a local afternoon radio show in Charlottesville, it is better than the never-ending loop of the same news stories on tv (do we really need that much tv news on in the evening?).
Tune in!

NYC Shuttle

"Cool Honey"'s post intrigued me. Heck- I am going to NYC- I prefer not to drive by myself- maybe I should take the Starlight Express!? Maybe I will run into the mayor, if not I will ride with fellow Charlottesvillians and support a Charlottesville business.

News weeklies & iriver in hand I went forth for the grand city. It was cold on the way up but comfortable. Dennis is a crazy driver, but I suppose that is what we want- for the driver to get us there as quick as possible. Unfortunately NJ turnpike had a back-up so we did not arrive until 1:00ish AM. No problem though, I was glad to be there.

It is kind of a mystery where to pick the bus up in NY; there are no signs. There is at least a sign in c'ville. The bus arrived and helped clear up the confusion on where to pick the bus up. I did not (against my better judgment) get a burger at Pastis, although I hear it is excellent. We were told that the heat was not working, but the bus folks provided us with blankets (poor bus driver). Freedom is a crazy driver but not as crazy. The bus had some issues so we had to stop for an hour at the rest area north of Baltimore. Still no heat and now no light for reading I could contemplate the nightmare that is the 95 corridor. I have to say, I was glad it wasnt the middle of summer and the AC wasnt working.

We arrived at the almost timely time of 12:20ish AM. I was impressed, despite an hour long stop she got us to the ville so promptly (good job).

There are some annoying people riding the bus, but most are normal, not annoying types. I really support the idea of cville-nyc shuttle, but I prefer not to worry about the condition of the bus (preferring instead to worry about crazy other drivers).

Chris asked whether I would do it again...I considered the question, an unenthusiastic 'sure' was the response.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

If its spring it must be steroids

SHOCK! Barry Bonds used drugs to enhance his performance- perhaps that is why he is so surly.
There are no more sports heros- when one cheats, it calls into question everyone's integrity.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Cvillenews Mention

Thanks to cvillenews (Waldo) for the mention. I do love the idea of a blog carnival for cvilleblogs.

Chick Corea and Touchstone

Last night I volunteered at another great show at the Paramount, Chick Corea & Touchstone.. The show featured a spanish dancer, Auxi Fernandez. The theater was not sold out, but the crowd was really into it.

Chick Corea is a great jazz piano player (I learned), the band included a flutist, two drummers and a bass. The dancing really made the show interesting. I liken it to taking pictures of a beautiful view or landmark- sure it is interesting, BUT when you include a person in the picture I find the picture that much more interesting. Jazz bands are interesting and this one more interesting than most, but add a dancer performing tap and flamenco style dancing it is fascinating.

The theater was testing a sound system for representatives of other venues, it was awesome. The Paramount is not in the market for such a sound system according to the executive director, Chad Hershner, BUT I think a better sound system would make the theater that much better of a venue for folks who are not in the front rows. While introducing the band, Chad solicited suggestions for next year, email him and tell him.

Cabin Fever

So on what must have been the coldest night of the year, our family hiked into the wilderness and slept in a cabin with no electricity or water. Cooking and heat were not generously provided by a wood cooking stove. I enjoy using the wood stove for heat and cooking BUT when it is 17 degrees out the little stove cannot heat the whole cabin- so we slept in chilly 40-45 degree temps.

The hike from Skyline Drive down to the cabin was ".4 mile" it is downhill from the parking lot (with lots of gear) until you get to the last 300 feet and it is straight uphill. Cabin is small and can sleep twelve people. A spring provides water for the visitors to the cabin (boil? I dont know- we did).

Beautiful views and it would have been much more fun with milder tempuratures. Apparently visitors can hike to waterfalls that are about a mile away. With two toddlers and frigid temps, I was not inclined to hike it. Oh also we had to hike uphill with all of our gear (and two toddlers) to the car. I look forward to doing this again when my children are more helpful (although David did walk the whole way- he is getting to be quite a big boy).

PATC maintains the cabins and the prices are extremely reasonable. Cabins can be hard to get, so reserve early. I will be waiting until the hottest time of the year to go again.

TV commercial

Subaru sponsors Lance Armstrong, Sheryl Crow dates Lance, Sheryl signs on to do a commercial for Subaru, Lance and Sheryl break up. Too bad.