Saturday, September 22, 2007

  1. Merrell white nurses shoes $90. Never worn in public except to walk my dog at night. The guy who sold them to me said that nurses in NYC wear them and clock thousands of miles each year in them. Since when have I been a nurse?

  2. 1981 Subaru GL Wagon, $550. I really wanted this car because it was the car I wanted my pair to buy when we lived in Stowe, because every other family had a Subaru wagon. The driver's side door was the only one that actually worked. The hood would not close properly and on the car's maiden voyage the hood flew open, caught the wind and smashed back into the windshield. I sold it 1 month later for $175.

  3. Kastinger alpine boots: $170 – my feet in a vice. Worn a few times and discarded for a pair of rubber caulked boots I found in a trailer.

  4. 1981 Chevy Van; I traded this for my Chevy K5 Blazer. A musty, unsafe, van. It was never insured under my ownership. I sold it for $600 so I could go to London and doss on someone’s couch for 2 weeks. That summer the K5 selfcombusted while loaded with the owners entire belongings (he was moving houses), destroying everything he owned.

  5. Edun Jeans €105; that they were designed by Bono’s relatives apparently impressed me. They were tight in all the wrong places and flared at the cuff. Worn 3 times before being discarded. Note to self: stick with mainstream jeans

  6. 1981 Cadillac $600: this purchase is made worse because of all the signs that were screaming at me not to buy it. When I looked at the engine it was covered in motor oil. The seller appeared to be a criminal. That I had to borrow money from my student roomate to buy the car makes it even worse.

  7. The dozens of books and CDs I have bought but have never read and will likely never read-estimated $500;

  8. 1998 Andre Ziltener Clos du Vougeot Bourgogne,$100. purchased at the winery itself, it was, like so many bourgoghnes, a gamble. We opened it at Joie, surrounded by a bunch of sommeliers and chefs, with high expectations. Thin and tastless. Quite simply, it sucked.

  9. The self-help books I am too embarrassed to name here; estimate $100. Only when you read more than a few of them to you realise they are all the same book, just repackaged.

  10. Technology stock; $1800. Purchased February 2000. Can you say “great timing”?

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Last week I was skyping with Chris about The Police's upcoming world tour. He had just scored 2 in the reds for their Montreal show, finding the tickets on eBay. I have not heard about a Dublin date yet, but hope they do make it over here.

We got to talking about the plethora of tours by bands who really should just hang it up (are you listening, Roger Daltrey?) and how this contrasted with the decision by The Police to regroup for a world tour.

Many bands stay together for the money and keep touring solely for the money. Well past their prime, the reasons for carrying on likely have more to do with college fees than the desire to "see a million faces, and rock them all."

The Police, Chris argued, were a band that never should have broken up. They had just released a fantastic album and launched an even more successful world tour. (My older brother Jamie went to the concert at the Olympic Stadium, to many everlasting envy.) Yes, Sting had a successful solo career to pursue, but they left a huge vacuum in the music world.

A vacuum that I argued was filled by U2. Up until their fourth release, The Unforgettable Fire, U2 had never fulfilled their commercial promise to their record label, Island Records. At my high school, only the cool kids who were up on new music listened to U2 before 1984, but after The Unforgettable Fire, every kid in chess club had a U2 pin on their blazer.

This could not have happened had The Police not been an alternative to Michael Jackson.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Given the infrequency with which I post on this blog, I often wonder why I even bothered to post at all over the last 6 years. I have few regular readers, and even fewer comments. I suppose, however, that I have gotten from this blog all that I put in, which was occassionally very little.

When we moved to Dublin last year, I set up a typepad account, really just so I could track who was coming to my blog and from where. How vain.

But on those days at work when I stare out into the M50 from my glass cage and wonder why I am here, I sometimes scroll through my old posts and find a gem that perfectly captured something I was feeling years ago.

I have since cancelled the typepad account, and added this blog to

Sunday, December 24, 2006

My year in cities 2006

A list of the cities I visited this year (multiple visits with a*).

St Affrique

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Much speculation has been made of the kind of wedding my sister Christina would have, most of it predicting that it would be one loud shaker. Christina and Josh did not disappoint. Having been to many weddings I can confidently say this one was the best wedding ever. The crowd, the food, the music, the location; it all came together, like the perfect salad, as Steve Rubell used to say. I think you can judge a wedding by how many people are still dancing at 2am, and when the band pulled the plug at 2am in the McCord Museum, the dance floor was shoulder to shoulder and everyone was screaming for just one more song.

It's not easy to get all 6 of my family on the dance floor but Good Time Charlie did it, perhaps for the first time in my life. I think it was during "500 Miles" that I looked around and saw Christina and Michael, Jamie and my parents all getting jiggy wit it. Normally I'd be kind of embarassed or self-concious, but I guess I have moved past that. it was a celebration, so we were celebrating. Anya and I danced all night, my glass of MacCallan always stowed close by on a table. I think I even got all emotional at the end of the night, after too much whisky. normally, i don't drink it to excess, but since Josh and Tina were laying out the 12 year-old, what was I supposed to do, drink Ex all night?

The speeches were short but heartfelt and genuine, the cake was fantastic and the overall feeling of joy lasted much longer than the hangover. even this cynic is still warmed by the afterglow.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

The traffic in Dublin today was ridiculous for a Saturday. The mad gridlock was fodder for my theory about Dubliners all doing the same thing at the same time. If you want to drive anywhere easily then get up early.

I have lost my interest in driving and I think I now prefer to be chauffered around. One thing I love about visiting our UK office is that the new car service usually has a late model Mercedes waiting for me when I get to Heathrow. Now if they could pick me up in a 1977 450 SEL 6.9, that would really be something.

Due to November being NaBloPoMo, (something I discovered after the contest started so i could not join anyway, I made and effort to post every day. I think I lasted 2 days.

Max is becoming addicted to the DVDs that I play for him on Saturday mornings. I don't want him to be a TV addict like I was, but I also want to read the FT on Saturday and having him staring into the iMac is the easy answer.

His favorite is Pingu, a clever claymation series about a rambunctious young penguin. Just uttering two words from the title song is enough to make him run to the bookshelf and point at the top shelf, shouting "Beenguuu!". The title song is catchy and it is actually quite creative.

The close second is a collection of Sesame Street songs, catchy numbers which stick in my head all day. One of the videos features Ernie in a bath tub of naked men, with a cow in a shower cap.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


I love it when a plan comes together.