Friday, May 30, 2008

Spokane Falls, and it can't get up

Among the admittedly short list of reasons to live in Spokane is the thundering Spokane River Falls through downtown this time of year, when snowmelt fills the river. These pix were taken by me in Riverfront Park near my office. That's me in the center, contemplating the larger mysteries of life while coated with the spray of the falls. Buckaroo took the pix

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Serenade to John

After working together for the past 12 years, and for the same company for the past 25, John left the company this week for a new job with the state of Washington. This was a momentous occasion that required an epic performance. To see the results, click on the link below:

This follows by one week my performance of We've Lost That Ammons Feeling at Dave's going away party. That recording _ like the tape of my legendary night with Pamela Anderson _ has yet to surface.

FYI, I'm starting a new business in which I will write and perform karaoke songs for customers. If you have a family member, friend, co-worker, etc who deserves a song especially written and performed for them, contact the Karoake King via this blog. Give a once in a lifetime gift now.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Return of Randa

The daughter Miranda returned home yesterday for the summer. She will be a college senior next year. This picture is 3 years old from her high school graduation, but it's the most recent I have available right now. She goes to college on the East Coast, so we are always very excited when she comes home. That's my mother in the background.

Goodbye to Dave

The Vegas Jacket and I went to Seattle last weekend for the going-away party of colleague Dave Ammons, who ended a 3-decade Associated Press career by taking a job with the state.

As is my custom, I wrote and performed a karaoke song for the occasion. It was a version of ``You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling,'' rewritten as ``We've Lost That Ammons Feeling.''

I think it was a showstopper, although the tune is quite complex and required a script AND my laptop to work properly. Thanks to Dave Herron for helping me get all the technical issues right.

It was very hot in Seattle, and wearing the jacket only made it hotter. Fortunately, I packed shorts and bought some comfortable shoes. There were some fine performances by other members of the staff, including Gene, George, Tim and The Pussycat Dolls. But none was dressed theatrically enough, in my opinion.

I have to do this all over again on Friday, when the only other writer here in Spokane, John Wiley, also leaves the company to work for the state. I have written a special tune for him, and hope to figure out how to put a clip on this blog.
Below is another picture from Dave's party, showing Dave, right, and Rachel, left, appearing to enjoy my performance.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Band Names

We haven't done potential band names in awhile. Here's some new ones:

For an Emo band: The Ennui-ners (say it aloud)

heavy metal band: Cannon Fodder

Glam rockers: Stiletto Heels

Boy Band: Extra Virgin Olive Oil

as always, if you take a name, you owe me money

Thursday, May 8, 2008

The Spirit of Nickfest

Already we are two months into Nickfest, the year-long celebration leading up to my epic 50th birthday bash next March. Yet only one person has truly jumped into the spirit of regular gift-giving that this occasion requires. Below is a photo of Charlie's latest gifts, a cigar and a floating key holder for my boat.

Thanks again, Charlie, for all that you do.

Incidentally, I finally got fully into the Nickfest spirit myself by buying three tickets to Jimmy Buffett's concert at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas next October. My two brothers and I will roam Sin City again.

To the faithful reader who asked what was behind me in the recent pix from Caesar's Palace, I assume he was talking about the skywalk across the Strip.

And thanks to all of you who saw my recent swimsuit picture and asked if I had appeared in the movie ``Boogie Nights.'' I did not. That was Mark Wahlberg.
At left, Charlie hits another ace.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Tennis Trauma, Part II

The most difficult USTA tennis season of this long and illustrious career has come to an unsatisfying close.

The 3.0 team I captain, which has made the playoffs every year since 1999, just missed this year after one of our singles players was disqualified for allegedly being a ringer. All his wins were converted to losses, leaving us with a 2-4 record and me with a bad attitude. What a load of crap.

This means no weekend getaway for the boys in the Tri-Cities in May. What a loss to their economy, especially the casinos and bars.
Our 3.5 team went 0-6. We didn't expect to do a lot better, because we were playing up. I had to play No. 1 singles because we were short-handed in our final match. At least I wasn't killed.
Above is a picture of me talking to the network guys after our final match.

Climbing the Walls

We recently posed for a photo in front of the climbing wall in our house. The mural was painted by Harold Balasz, a well-known artist in this part of the world.
Of course, you may not have noticed the mural if you were mesmerized by The Vegas Jacket!
With good weather finally here, it's time to bring the Jacket into the sunshine again