:: This Goes Without Saying...Boston, MA ::

My collective impressions of the new controls.

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[::.. cast of characters ..::]

AL(al) n.
Narrator of highest note.

LORI(lohr-ee) n.
The girlfriend. Slightly bratty. Arachnophobe.

CHARLIE(chahr-lee) n.
A dieffenbachia plant spawn from the great Mother Charlie in Woods Hole, MA.

[::.. archive ..::]

:: Saturday, January 31, 2004 ::

(Adapted from a previous work found in the Green Pond Scrolls. -Al)

Fear ye not, proud people of New England, but watch in glory on this Sabbath day and accept the salvation which I deliver to you: For the Panthers whom ye shall cast thine eyes upon, they shall be sent home with much sorrow, from this post-season.

Mighty men of Valor, all these the sons of Belichick, fifty-three soldiers in all, fit to go out for war and battle, shall sweep down upon the enemy at my command. Heed my voice, sturdy men, and go forth, clash with thine enemy Delhomme and the Carolinian armies.

Look, and ye shall find me, as the sun sets on the 1st day of the new month, standing, reliant, upon the stadium field, arm raised in victory, with the trumpet of God in mine hand. And all gridiron foes that hear the sound shall tremble, and be in anguish because of thee.

Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.

Brady 8:14

:: posted by Al on 1/31/2004 10:10:00 AM ::

:: Friday, January 30, 2004 ::

By design, I haven’t said one word on this Blog site about the upcoming game this Sunday.

I am going to release one brief statement and that’s all I am going to say on the subject:

If you are a Carolina Panthers fan, don’t even pretend to think that your guys have Bill Belichick, Charlie Weis, or Romeo Crennel figured out.

Here’s a tip: Watch out for WRs Dedric Ward and J.J. Stokes, FB Larry Centers, and TE Daniel Graham.

:: posted by Al on 1/30/2004 12:40:00 PM ::

:: Monday, January 26, 2004 ::

I went to a baptism this weekend for Lori’s new cousin, Francesca Candelieri. It was a fun time with lots of Lori’s family and the usual tons of good Italian food and drink for everyone. Frank and Lisa chose Lori to be their new baby's Godmother, I could tell that Lori was very happy and proud to have been selected for this role. The kid’s new Godfather came all the way over from Italy just to be a part of the ceremony. Now I may be wrong here, and I’ll have to double-check this again to be absolutely certain, but I’m pretty sure his name is Vito. Yup. Francesca has a Godfather named Vito from Italy. Those of you who know this family probably aren’t surprised.

Once again, out of a crowd of about 40, I was the only non-Italian in attendance. I thought Lori’s younger sister Krissy was bringing her husband Theo, another outsider like myself, but again, he left me hanging in the breeze because he had to work.

I picked up a new label this weekend. Lori’s little cousin Isabella remembered from a previous conversation I had with her that I am ½ Irish. Now she runs around blaming everything I do on the fact that I’m Irish. Lori’s family thought that was so funny. I guess I’m Al the Irish guy from now on.

We got our water back on last night around 7:30, a pipe had burst out on the street so 2 whole blocks in my neighborhood were without water for over 24 hours. Dirty Al no more.

:: posted by Al on 1/26/2004 10:26:00 AM ::

:: Friday, January 23, 2004 ::

I've been very busy this week and as a result my blog time has suffered. I've got some interesting things going on this weekend, they are bound to spark inspiration. Stay tuned...

:: posted by Al on 1/23/2004 07:53:00 AM ::

:: Sunday, January 18, 2004 ::


New England Patriots : YES
Indianapolis Colts : NO

:: posted by Al on 1/18/2004 10:43:00 PM ::

:: Saturday, January 17, 2004 ::

Sacre bleu. A bunch of my amigos ( Rob, Kim, Tom, Taylor, Lib, Jen) just called me from their cushy seats at the Bell Centre in Montreal where they are presently watching Les Habitants play Les New York Rangers. For those of you who don't know these folks I am forced to hang out with, they certainly aren't calling because they miss me. But they certainly are calling because it's a great opportunity to harass me for not being there with them to see this game between two Original Six NHL teams in a great hockey town like Montreal.

How could they go North without me? I'm one of the members of our fragile fellowship who kept the annual tradition of going to hockey games alive during the lean years when the Bruins sucked. I even go to AHL minor league games in Lowell, MA for Pete's sake! I am widely acknowledged by the general public as the hockey guru of the group. Anyway, when I was headed to work this morning they were all in a rented van on their way to the border. Yeah, I know, boo-hoo.

But hey, who needs 'em? I've got my friend Jack to keep me company tonight. Hey Jack, meet Mr. Glass.

But now that I think about it, I remember that as a die-hard Boston Bruins fan I hate both of those teams that they are watching play up in Canadia. The Rangers suck because…well because they're from New York. And the Habs, those freakin' Canadiens, they suck because they used to beat the Bruins EVERY YEAR in the playoffs. At some point in the last 10 years, I can't remember exactly when, I purchased a t-shirt outside the Boston Garden that I felt very passionate about. Montreal was the arch-enemy of the Bruins and I wore it at several Bruins/Canadiens games. I still have it. I'm gonna go put it on. No really, I'm gonna go put it on.

:: posted by Al on 1/17/2004 11:28:00 PM ::

:: Friday, January 16, 2004 ::

I'd be scared if I was a Cubs Fan:

Former Boston Red Sox manager Grady Little was hired by the Chicago Cubs on Friday as a scouting consultant and assistant to general manager Jim Hendry. Little will help evaluate trades and the Cubs' minor league system, and assist with coaching duties during spring training.

:: posted by Al on 1/16/2004 03:23:00 PM ::

My girlfriend Lori got me the Indiana Jones DVD Box Set for Christmas and last night I finally threw Raiders of the Lost Ark into the machine to check it out. There are no new, extended scenes or anything like that, but it’s still a great DVD and I’m happy to have it. I have seen that film dozens of times, who hasn’t? But after watching it this time I had a shocking revelation.

You know the scene on the remote Mediterranean island where Indy and Marion are tied to a post and the evil French guy Belloq opens the Ark? What happens next is that the Wrath of God flies out and melts/fries all the Nazis in attendance, but not our heroes as they wisely kept their eyes shut. That scene got me thinking.

It seems to me from what happens throughout the movie that the Ark (and God by association) doesn’t really dig that whole Nazi-thing, I think that’s pretty obvious. So why is the whole movie about denying the Ark to them? U.S. Army Intelligence should have Fedex'd the thing right to Hitler’s doorstep, let him have some big elaborate ceremony in downtown Berlin where in front of his senior staff and thousands of his minions he pops the top on the Ark, resulting in everyone getting flambéed, old-school Almighty-style. Problem solved, World War II prevented.

Yeah, I know, it’s a movie.

:: posted by Al on 1/16/2004 10:04:00 AM ::

:: Thursday, January 15, 2004 ::


Early this morning, engineers from NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab played Baha Men's Who Let the Dogs Out in the control room as they watched new images confirming that their Mars Rover 'Spirit' had successfully rolled off its lander platform.

Someone at NASA desperately needs to update the tunes on their iPod.

I mean what's next? Nelly's Hot In Herre when they take temperature readings?

If by the end of the mission they don't find anything on the planet with a pulse it would be entirely appropriate to play that catchy little ditty Geen Leven Op Mars(No Life on Mars) by the Dutch band The Amazing Stroopwafels. That tune was huge back in '88. Somewhere. Who knows, maybe 'Spirit' will run into something and they won't need it.

For $820 million worth of what is essentially disposable space technology, couldn't they have hired a DJ?

:: posted by Al on 1/15/2004 11:39:00 AM ::

:: Wednesday, January 14, 2004 ::

I read a post on another blog site talking about this book but I thought for sure that this story was entirely made up because it was just too bizarre. But after some research, apparently it's true. Now that I think about it, it really doesn't surprise me based on who we are dealing with.

Saddam’s Novel - Be Gone, Demons!

(IsraelNN.com) Dictator, warmonger, mass murderer, sociopath and author. According to the Daily Telegraph of London, which obtained one of only a few surviving copies, Saddam Hussein spent his last days before the war writing a novel, entitled Be Gone Demons!

According to the newspaper, the novel focuses on a heroic Arab leading character (“a pure, virtuous Arab. Salim is tall and handsome with a straight nose....”) leading an underground resistance against an Iraq taken over by an old, fat and evil Jew named Ezekiel. The Ezekiel figure runs throughout the historical narrative, from Biblical times to the present day.

Throughout the novel, the Jews are portrayed as delighting in inciting the “Romans” - perhaps the West - against Muslim nations, particularly Iraq. After a final battle between Salim and Ezekiel and his Roman allies, Saddam writes, the Roman king returns home to find the twin towers of his capital city aflame.

:: posted by Al on 1/14/2004 03:57:00 PM ::

I saw this on Reuters. So stop making fun of me.

Internet Fanatics Aren't Geeks
Wed Jan 14

By Bernhard Warner

LONDON (Reuters) - The typical Internet user -- far from being a geek -- shuns television and actively socializes with friends, a study on surfing habits says.

The findings of the first World Internet Project report present an image of the average Netizen that contrasts with the stereotype of the loner "geek" who spends hours of his free time on the Internet and rarely engages with the real world.

Instead, the typical Internet user is an avid reader of books and spends more time engaged in social activities than the non-user, it says. And, television viewing is down among some Internet users by as much as five hours per week compared with Net abstainers, the study added.

:: posted by Al on 1/14/2004 12:31:00 PM ::

:: Tuesday, January 13, 2004 ::

I think it's high time the Captain and Ms. Edna hold a Retirement ceremony down in Woods Hole, MA for the name "CHARLIE" so no plant can ever use that sacred name again. There can be only one.

:: posted by Charlie the Plant on 1/13/2004 01:19:00 PM ::

I get feedback from some of you faithful readers out there, and sometimes some of you say I write about Sports too damn much. Sorry, but you gotta write what you know. Am I right Dave?

Last weekend I got to see the Bruins beat the Detroit Red Wings (and all their obnoxious, bandwagon fans who have probably never been to Detroit in their lives) 2-1 in OT. It was followed up by the Pats win over the Titans.

Sunday I saw Return of the King. That movie ROCKED. I told Lori I would take her to see it, I now know where the brief, yet nasty, spider scene is so she can look away like the good arachnophobe that she is.

Last night the Boston Bruins made it official. Cam Neely’s #8 is now hanging from the rafters at The Vault. What a player he was. The NHL needs more guys like him playing in the game today. A smart, tough, intimidating, team player who could fight as well as score. I mean come on, in the 1993-94 season, he scored his 50th goal of the season in the 44th game. The Bruins played the 44th game of this season at the game I was at last Saturday. Nobody in the NHL even has 50 points yet at this mark in the season. Wayne Gretzky was the only player to reach the 50-goal mark faster (39 games).

Gord Kluzak, a top defenseman with the Bruins in the 80’s, and now their TV analyst, had a great comment about Cam: "He didn't have to backcheck much because usually there were bodies strewn all over the ice," said Kluzak. "There was nobody left to pick up after he crushed everyone on his way to the net. Defensemen couldn't get away from him, as hard as they tried, and every hit was a collision. It was like his skates were an inch deep in the ice.''

Lori liked the way Cam’s daughter, Ava, was out there last night wearing her dad’s jersey like a dress.

Do you think anyone calls him Sea Bass to his face?

:: posted by Al on 1/13/2004 10:57:00 AM ::

:: Saturday, January 10, 2004 ::

The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
of the big lake they called Gitchigumi.
The lake, it is said, never gives up her dead
When the skies of November turn gloomy.

I can't stop Gordon Lightfoot from singing inside my head.

I also for some reason (maybe related to my previous statement) feel like a zombie from Return of the Living Dead.

Except I need Coffee, not Brains.

When I woke up my thermometer said it was -4 degrees outside.

:: posted by Al on 1/10/2004 07:43:00 AM ::

:: Friday, January 09, 2004 ::

Tomorrow is going to be a long, cold, day.

I work in Salem, MA from 7:30am-12 noon.

My dirty, filthy, salt-coated car will cruise me back to Boston by 1pm in time to go to the Bruins-Red Wings game at the Fleet Center with 7 of my friends. (I hope I'm able to squeeze in some pre-game beers at Half Time Pizza on Causeway Street, it's been a tradition with us for years at this point; it's an absolute part of a quality Boston hockey experience in my book.)

Then, after a brief, yet potentially dangerous, 4-hour lull (the point in my day when things could REALLY get ugly if I end up in a bar or something), the Patriots play the Tennessee Titans at 8:15pm. I'll be watching the game at a friend's house in Chestnut Hill (well, that's the plan at least).

Weather Report:

Tomorrow: Mostly sunny skies. Cold. Wind chills may approach -20F. High 12F. Winds NW at 10 to 20 mph.

:: posted by Al on 1/09/2004 03:15:00 PM ::

:: Thursday, January 08, 2004 ::

To me it is unbelievable that former Red Sox left fielder/designated hitter Jim Rice was not voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, again, for the ninth year in a row.

I was at that infamous Red Sox/White Sox game at Fenway in August 1982 when Dave Stapleton drilled a kid sitting near the Red Sox dugout with a line drive foul ball *BAM!* - right in the forehead. Next thing you see is Jim Rice flying out of the dugout, he runs over into the stands and grabs the bloody kid and runs back into the dugout and the first aid room. Red Sox doctors quickly shipped the kid off to a local hospital for treatment. When Rice came out to play left field the next inning he still had the kid’s blood all over the front of his shirt.

What player these days would you ever see do that?

It is apparent that some Hall of Fame voters are out to get him. That's probably because Rice didn't make nicey-nice with the media when he was a player. Rice would go for long stretches without talking to the press, even after good games. When he did talk to the media he blasted them for distracting him from focusing on his game. Jim Rice didn’t pretend to be someone else once he was off the field. He was a surly and impatient guy who told it like it was. I guess reporters still hold a grudge against him for not offering up cheesy quotes and smiling all the time.

But come on, look at his stats: He retired in 1989 with a career .298 average, 382 homers, 2,452 hits, and 1,451 RBIs.

He was an eight time All-Star who played 16 seasons, all with the Boston Red Sox. He batted over .300 seven times, hit more than 20 homers 11 times (four times he hit 39 or more) and drove in 102 or more runs in eight seasons.

Jim Ed Rice won the AL MVP in 1978 and finished in the top five for MVP voting five other times. In his 1978 MVP season he had a.315 average, 46 homers and 139 RBIs. In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s he was one of the most feared hitters in the league.

It’s time for the Baseball HOF voters to do the right thing and send Jim Rice to Cooperstown where he belongs.

:: posted by Al on 1/08/2004 10:49:00 AM ::

:: Wednesday, January 07, 2004 ::

I knew it.

:: posted by Al on 1/07/2004 02:35:00 PM ::

:: Tuesday, January 06, 2004 ::

Tuesdays are not my day off. So today I am at work. I hope an unexpected dental procedure does not sneak up behind me like it did yesterday. A bottle of amoxicillin and a bottle of codeine-laden Tylenol are at my side with their safeties in the OFF position. I'm not afraid to use them. Or sell them. Actually, that's not true. I wouldn't sell these bad boys at this point. Not that I would usually sell my drugs under other circumstances. Or anybody else's drugs for that matter. To sum it up, I am not now, nor have I ever been, a drug dealer, OK? Quit hassling me man!

:: posted by Al on 1/06/2004 11:25:00 AM ::

Boo-frickin'-hoo you big baby.

:: posted by Charlie the Plant on 1/06/2004 11:14:00 AM ::

:: Monday, January 05, 2004 ::

Mondays are my day off. Ahhh…Mondays. A day set aside amongst my normally hectic week for relaxation and thoughtful introspection. For some reason I scheduled a dentist appointment on this particular Monday. You see, I had a filling fall out late last week so it really was inevitable. It had to be done at some point, better to get it out of the way now, I guess. I am trying out a new dentist, I did not like my last sadist, I mean, hack, I mean, dentist.

So I show up to the office down on Newbury Street, fill out some basic paperwork and sit down to wait my turn. It didn’t take long, just halfway through the Sports Illustrated I was reading before I found myself in the chair with a lead vest draped over me, sitting through a mandatory set of x-rays that all new patients have to get. Once that was done they took off the vest and went to develop the film.

The dentist came back in with a manila folder that contained my film and put it up to the light box to check out my teeth. It was the audible gasp she made while looking at the x-rays that tipped me off. She must of been a rookie, the instincts of a hardened pro wouldn't have allowed even that brief reaction. I turned around just in time to see the look of terror that was plastered on her face, it told me all I needed to know. Our eyes met as she screamed "Root Canal!" and she dove at a large, red button on the wall. A loud siren began shrieking, lights started flashing, and people ran in all directions. Chaos was definitely in full effect. I tried to get up from the chair but a large mass slammed me back into my seat. A solid, menacing-looking individual in a dark blue S.W.A.T outfit stuck the cold barrel of an M-16 up my left nostril and said "If you don't want to get shot I recommend you produce some sort of dental insurance card in the next five seconds, mister!" I slowly reached into my pocket and displayed my card with my name clearly printed on the front in bold, capital letters. "He's got Delta PREMIER!", the threatening guy with the gun screamed. Someone in the back began to cheer and eventually the whole office erupted in spontaneous applause. There was much rejoicing. Even the people in the HAZMAT suits inside the area cordoned off with yellow tape were clapping. So they strapped me down and went to work.

You would think from my gruff, tough-guy exterior that I am a brave man. But there were needles involved. Lots of 'em. I think I blacked out.

'oot - 'ann-al. Lovely. This how I speak at the moment. Frankly, from the amount of time and for all the drilling that took place I think Panama Canal sounds more like it.

I would like to give a shout-out to the Delta Dental insurance people as they paid for 80% of the dental shock-and-awe campaign that was carried out on my face.

They did warn me and said that even though I am not that uncomfortable now, later on the Pain Train will be arriving at the depot up here on the 4th floor in my apartment. I think they said I should go to talk to Howard Dean. Or was it Co Dean? I think the novocaine has gone to my brain and made me insane. Apparently uncontrollable rhyming is a root canal side effect that I was not made unaware of pre-procedure. This stream of unconsciousness has accelerated my obnoxiousness. Save yourself!!

:: posted by Al on 1/05/2004 02:15:00 PM ::

:: Thursday, January 01, 2004 ::

So this is 2004. I think it bears a remarkable resemblance to 2003.

Well I guess that song by The Who was right: "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss."

:: posted by Al on 1/01/2004 08:11:00 PM ::

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