Sunday, September 17, 2006

Random Musings Throughout the Weekend

- For the last week or so, the memories of having played a wonderful version of Solitaire called "Cruel" have been flooding back to me. Remember? It came with one of the first Windows systems and their Games/Accessories. Well thanks to those memories, I recently downloaded Windows Solitude, a FANTASTIC collection of Windows-styled Solitaire games...including not only the traditional Klondike and Cruel, but also Bristol*, Freecell, Golf, Mount Olympus, and Pyramid. Perfect for anyone needing a Solitaire fix and/or just tired of playing the same old Klondike...Solitude may not have the most games, but it has most, if not all of the popular forms of Solitaire.

- I got my Store catalogue today. And despite the Canes winning the Cup (which *was* given attention through the showing of Rod Brind'Amour giving Lord Stanley a smooch, along with Brindy's career stats, on the inside cover), the best attention they were given throughout the catalogue was a couple of t-shirts inside and one of those gaudy pink ladies' shirts on the back cover. Even though it may not sound like a lot, it's an improvement compared to the past three seasons...particularly 2002-03, where despite being Stanley Cup Finalists, the Canes did not have representation in NOT EVEN ONE ITEM in the catalogue for the next season.

- Speaking of this upcoming season's Store catalogue, I've already found something I *really* want...
these new shirts with "realistic" versions of the teams' logos. Unfortunately, the Penguins seem to be the only favorite team of mine with such shirts. I can understand the Leafs not having one (making a Leaf look fierce *would* be quite a challenge), but the Canes?! Couldn't they have at least made a storm cloud come out of the Canes' main logo? OR, what about a "realistic" version of the storm warning flag on the hockey stick blowing in a gale with dark clouds and lightning?

- Recently, around in the West Virginia areas of Bluefield/Princeton, the "Welcome To West Virginia" signs have been replaced with signs that not only say "Welcome To West Virginia", but also "Open For Business". When I saw the first of these signs a couple of weeks ago, I was like "HUH?!". Why "Open For Business"? Are they expecting more tourists? More merchants? More who or whatever? I know WV is doing better on the money front...they recently restarted a road project that runs from Welch through Bluefield that was abandoned a couple of years due to lack of necessary funds. But still, "Open For Business" is a horrible state slogan...why not the previous "Wild and Wonderful", especially since that is on everything else from license plates to billboard ads?!

- Why, oh WHY do I continue to watch the UNC Tar Heel football team?! I love my Heels, but damn, do they always find crazy ways to prove to the world that they are not really a football school. Crazy ways like beating Furman, FREAKIN' FURMAN(!!), 45-42. Thank god for my Panthers and Steelers fandoms...though, you watch them somehow find a way to eff up tomorrow (and/or Monday in Pittsburgh's case) AND my NFL picks for this weekend.

How bad is UNC football? So bad that not even a California Kool-Aid with a burger with Asiago and Provolone cheeses and Tater Tots could ease the suffering of watching a Division I-A team stuggle against a Division I-AA team.

California Kool-Aid

Fill glass with ice.
2 oz. Rum
Fill with equal parts of Orange Juice and Milk.

- The other drink I had the fortune to sample tonight was one that I somewhat concocted on my own...more like took my version of Sex On the Pool Table AND merely added Cream of Coconut to it. Thanks to this AND figuring out that if you change even just one ingredient, the drink deserves a different name. So without further ado, I present...the Hartford Whaler!

Hartford Whaler (On the Rocks Version)

Fill glass with ice.
1 oz. Vodka
1/2 oz. Peach Schnapps
1/2 oz. Blue Curacao
Fill with equal parts of Orange Juice and Pineapple Juice.

Hartford Whaler (Smooth Version)

Fill shaker with ice.
1 oz. Vodka
1/2 oz. Peach Schnapps
1/2 oz. Blue Curacao
1 tsp. Cream of Coconut
Fill with equal parts of Orange Juice and Pineapple Juice.
Fill glass with ice and pour from the shaker.

Just like the Sex On the Pool Table name it used to bear, the Hartford Whaler gets its name from the drink being a shade of green similar to not only a pool table's cloth, but also the color of the classic Whalers away uniforms before the switch to blue in 1991/92. But, while SOTPT uses Melon Liqueur, the Whaler has Peach Schnapps...making for just as good, if not better taste AND no difference in the color. It is a peach, hon...

- Tonight, I learned not one, but two ways to beat my dad at Nine Ball...

1. Have a nice, tall mixed drink while playing.


2. Play the Pat Metheny Group's Offramp on the stereo.

While Offramp is one of my most favorite albums from Pat Metheny and his Group, it is the complete opposite for my dad...who I know gets turned off by Pat's attempt at acid/psychedelic/improvised jazz in the title-track. I can't say I am all that fond of "Offramp" either, nor "The Bat, Part Two". But overall, I love "Barcarole", "Are You Going With Me", "Au Lait", and "James" too much to absolutely hate the album and dismiss it as a fluke.

- Speaking of Jazz, a couple of nights ago, I was randomly picking bands and reading reviews for various albums on
this site. I happen to pick the Bonzo Dog (Doo-Dah) Band, and read the review for their Gorilla. Based on that AND one of the songs' titles: "Jazz: Delicious Hot, Disgusting Cold!", I am so going to have to somehow listen to Gorilla as soon as I can.

Current Music: "Francesca" by John Pizzarelli

* - Bristol has been the most frustrating version of Solitaire I have played thus appropro that it is named after the location of a certain just as frustrating sports network.