Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Rule #1: Pay the babysitter

Rule #2: If the sitter shows up at your house at 4:30 in the morning to trash the place until you pay her, it's probably time for a new sitter:
CLINTON -- A 16-year-old girl faces several charges after allegedly starting a fracas around 4:30 a.m. Sunday because she believed she was owed back pay for babysitting.

The Clinton girl, whose name and address were not released by police because she is a minor, allegedly went to a Franklin Street home early Sunday and demanded the money. The amount was not listed in a police report.

She allegedly kicked in several windows of the house, and when she was refused the babysitting money, the teen allegedly started pushing and shoving a man and a woman. The man told police the teen attacked him. At one point, somebody pulled an electrical meter off the side of the house and the teen allegedly used it as a weapon, according to the police report.

Tires also were slashed, but it is unclear whose car received the damage.
I might have paid to see a crazed 16-year-old girl swinging an electrical meter around in the dark in a fit of rage. As long as she didn't slash my tires.

I hope the family had a baby cam. They might want to go back and look at the tape. They also might want to look into hiring a new sitter. And paying the girl on time.


Sunday, October 28, 2007

NFL Picks -- Week 8

For entertainment purposes only. Picks are against the spread, straight up winners are in bold.

Chicago (-5) over Detroit (L, 7-16)
Pittsburgh (-3.5) over Cincinnati (W, 24-13)
Indianapolis (-6.5) over Carolina (W, 31-7)
Tennessee (-7) over Oakland (L, 13-9)
Cleveland (-3) over St. Louis (W, 27-20)
Miami (+9.5) over N.Y. Giants (W, 10-13)
Minnesota (+1) over Philadelphia (L, 16-23)
N.Y. Jets (-3) over Buffalo (L, 3-13)
Houston (+9) over San Diego (L, 10-35)
Tampa Bay (-3.5) over Jacksonville (L, 23-24)
New Orleans (-2) over San Francisco (W, 31-10)
Washington (+16) over New England (L, 7-52)
Denver (-3) over Green Bay (L, 13-19)

Against the Spread
LAST WEEK   6- 8- 0   .429
SEASON 44-51- 8 .466
THIS WEEK 5- 8- 0 .385
SEASON 49-59- 8 .457
Straight Up
LAST WEEK  10- 4      .714
SEASON 70-33 .680
THIS WEEK 8- 5 .615
SEASON 78-38 .672

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Brookline is full of turkeys

And I don't mean the birds, but the unhinged Brookliners who fear the birds as if they are crazed, rabid killers:
BROOKLINE - On a recent afternoon, Kettly Jean-Felix parked her car on Beacon Street in Brookline, fed the parking meter, wheeled around to go to the optician and came face to face with a wild turkey.

The turkey eyed Jean-Felix. Jean-Felix eyed the turkey. It gobbled. She gasped. Then the turkey proceeded to follow the Dorchester woman over the Green Line train tracks, across the street, through traffic, and all the way down the block, pecking at her backside as she went.

"This is so scary," Jean-Felix said, finally taking refuge inside Cambridge Eye Doctors in Brookline's bustling Washington Square. "I cannot explain it."
I can explain it. You are afraid of a bird. Apparently this is standard operating procedure in Brookline, where residents and visitors are easily frightened. Check out a couple of these police reports:
July 20, 9:31 a.m., Rawson Road: Caller reports 18 turkeys in her backyard. "Something must be done," caller says. "It's just not right." Requests animal control officer.
"It's just not right." What would be more right? I'll tell you what would be more right: If there were a pack of coyotes to chase them off your yard. Of course, that would probably be enough to force a Rawson Road resident to move to the South End or someplace where an animal could not exist naturally.
September 4, 11:01 a.m., Chatham Circle and Chatham Street: Caller - who had gone under some beech trees to take a picture of turkeys - reports four turkeys chasing him. Requests animal control officer.
So you approach a group of turkeys with a foreign object, and then call the cops when the birds take offense? Do these people think this is a zoo or Disney world? If you're going to approach a wild animal, it might become defensive.

We have turkeys who live in the woods behind our new home. Almost every morning from March through Memorial Day, they would trek across the yard, looking for something to eat. Sometimes they would stop under the bird feeder to pick up any seeds that had fallen. Most of the time, they'd just hang out in the side yard.

Having the turkeys around is really cool. We know how to live with them. We watch them out the window, we don't try to ask them for a photo or an autograph, and we don't call the cops to shoo them away. Perhaps the people of Brookline might follow our lead and enjoy what they have.


No more going Solo

I always choose Solo cups over Dixie cups or other brands because for as long as I can remember, there has been a Solo plant in Leominster. Living in town, I remember driving past the plant nearly every day.

No more.
LEOMINSTER-- Solo Cup Co. is closing its facility on Florence Street at the end of the year, affecting almost 200 local employees.

The Illinois-based company announced the closure of its local plant and a facility in Wheeling, Ill., last week. The local plant closure is expected by Dec. 31. The Illinois plant will be closed by the end of February, according to the company.

Solo will be shifting production and employment to a manufacturing plant in North Andover and some of the local jobs may be moved there, according to a news release.
I guess it doesn't matter which brand I use now, since there is no local industry to support.


Saturday, October 20, 2007

NFL Picks -- Week 7

For entertainment purposes only. Picks are against the spread, straight up winners are in bold.

Tennessee (-1.5) over Houston (W, 38-36)
Tampa Bay (+2.5) over Detroit (L, 16-23)
Miami (+16) over New England (L, 28-49)
Atlanta (+8.5) over New Orleans (W, 16-22)
San Francisco (+9) over N.Y. Giants (L, 15-33)
Baltimore (-3) over Buffalo (L, 14-19)
Washington (-8.5) over Arizona (L, 21-19)
Kansas City (+2.5) over Oakland (W, 12-10)
N.Y. Jets (+6.5) over Cincinnati (L, 31-38)
Philadelphia (-5.5) over Chicago (L, 16-19)
Seattle (-8.5) over St. Louis (W, 33-6)
Dallas (-9) over Minnesota (W, 24-14)
Pittsburgh (-3.5) over Denver (L, 28-31)
Indianapolis (-3) over Jacksonville (W, 29-7)

Against the Spread
LAST WEEK   6- 5- 2   .538
SEASON 38-43- 8 .472
THIS WEEK 6- 8- 0 .429
SEASON 44-51- 8 .466
Straight Up
LAST WEEK  10- 3      .769
SEASON 60-29 .674
THIS WEEK 10- 4 .714
SEASON 70-33 .680

Sunday, October 14, 2007

NFL Picks -- Week 6

For entertainment purposes only. Picks are against the spread, straight up winners are in bold.

Tampa Bay (-3) over Tennessee (T, 13-10)
Chicago (-4.5) over Minnesota (L, 31-34)
Houston (+7) over Jacksonville (L, 17-37)
Cleveland (-4) over Miami (W, 41-31)
St. Louis (+9.5) over Baltimore (L, 3-22)
Green Bay (-3) over Washington (T, 17-14)
Kansas City (+3) over Cincinnati (W, 27-20)
Philadelphia (-3.5) over N.Y. Jets (W, 16-9)
Arizona (-4.5) over Carolina (L, 10-25)
San Diego (-9.5) over Oakland (W, 28-14)
New England (-5.5) over Dallas (W, 48-27)
Seattle (-6.5) over New Orleans (L, 17-28)
N.Y. Giants (-3.5) over Atlanta (W, 31-10)

Against the Spread
LAST WEEK   5- 9- 0   .357
SEASON 32-38- 6 .461
THIS WEEK 6- 5- 2 .538
SEASON 38-43- 8 .472
Straight Up
LAST WEEK  11- 3      .786
SEASON 50-26 .658
THIS WEEK 10- 3 .769
SEASON 60-29 .674

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Real fans drive to Fenway

A letter writer in today's Globe is "outraged" that the T stopped running before the game ended.
MY DAUGHTER and I were fortunate and excited to attend the second Red Sox Division Series playoff game Friday night...You can imagine our disappointment and outrage when at 11:45 p.m., the Fenway scoreboard announced that the last train out of Kenmore Station would be at 12:10 a.m.

We, along with thousands of other unhappy fans, were forced to depart Fenway Park during a tie game so that we would not be stranded in Kenmore Square after the game...
Guy, have you ever been to a Red Sox game before? If there is one thing I'd never do when attending a night game, it's take the T. I've been to Fenway at least twice when the T stopped running, and I had no trouble because I drove in.

Just another way to tell the difference between a Red Sox native, and member of Red Sox nation.


Who kicks a man over $35 in meat?

Every once in a while you come across one of those heartwarming stories where a little old shop owner turns the tables on a thief and puts him in his place. That's what I thought I was going to see when I read this headline in today's Sentinel and Enterprise:
Police: Store manager kicked thief in face
But then I read the story and found out this was not quite the warm fuzzy story I was expecting:
FITCHBURG -- A Market Basket manager faces a felony charge for allegedly kicking a repeat shoplifter in the face, according to police.

William Clark, 31, is charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (his shoe) for allegedly kicking Eric J. Casson, 20, of 161 West St., after police placed Casson under arrest, according to court documents. Officers struggled with Casson, finally getting him on the ground and in handcuffs, according to police.

"(Casson) had already been handcuffed and was in a prone position when (Clark) kicked him," officer Keith Bourne wrote in a statement of facts filed in Fitchburg District Court.
Wait, wait, wait...so the manager of the store kicked the alleged thief in the mug while the police pinned the cuffed man on the floor? Did the guy think this was some sort of TV show where the police would be OK with this?

So I imagine that Mr. Clark must have had a good reason to kick the guy. This burglar must be a real bad man:
Employees watched as Casson and Lapointe allegedly took approximately $35 in meat, Fossa said. Casson took beef while Lapointe took pork, Fossa said.
The thief got a shoe in his mug over $35 worth of meat? Who kicks a defenseless man in the face over $35 of meat? There isn't a whole lot that will cause me to sympathize with shoplifters, but that seems to be a bit much.

And now the store manager is facing felony assault charges while the meat snatchers are are off with a fairly minor shoplifting charge.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Proposed seat belt law for the dogs

There have to be more important things going on in this state than the question of whether or not our dogs need to be crated or belted in when we're out for a drive. Well, maybe not:
Bay State drivers will have to put a harness on or secure Fluffy in a pet carrier every time they take their pet for a spin, or they could face fines of up to $50 if legislation under consideration on Beacon Hill is approved...

"People are supposed to be concentrating on the road, but they're really acting like their cars are their living rooms. They've got the TV on, a cup of coffee and the dog's jumping all over their lap," [Rep. Robert] Fennell [D-Lynn] said. He submitted the bill after he spotted a woman driving on the Massachusetts Turnpike with a dog on her lap and a cell phone in her ear.
We put Rosie in a crate once for a long trip. After sliding around the crate for a couple of hours she got out of the car and puked from car sickness. So now she lies on the floor at Jackson's feet when we travel and is nice and relaxed. The last thing I want to do is toss her back in there when she is fine and comfortable just the way she is.

And sure, the dog shouldn't be sitting in the driver's lap while the car is moving. But if it is such a major safety concern, maybe we should pass a law outlawing people driving with animals (or other people) sitting in their laps, as opposed to targeting all pet owners.


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Cape vacation

We just got back from our annual weekend at the Cape. Here are a couple of pictures. As you can see, Jackson had a fantastic time.

Rosie and her new best buddy Otis.

c10 look what I got
Look what Jackson found.

c11 Pats Fan
Pats Win! Pats Win!

cape 170
Sunset from Monument Beach.

cape 176
Family picture.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

NFL Picks -- Week 5

For entertainment purposes only. Picks are against the spread, straight up winners are in bold.

(-8.5) over Atlanta (L, 20-13)
Houston (-5.5) over Miami (L, 22-19)
Kansas City (+2) over Jacksonville (L, 7-17)
Arizona (-3.5) over St. Louis (L, 34-31)
Cleveland (+16.5) over New England (L, 17-34)
New Orleans (-3) over Carolina (L, 13-16)
N.Y. Giants (-3.5) over N.Y. Jets (W, 35-24)
Pittsburgh (-5.5) over Seattle (W, 21-0)
Washington (-3.5) over Detroit (W, 34-3)
Tampa Bay (+10) over Indianapolis (L, 14-33)
San Diego (+1.5) over Denver (W, 41-3)
Baltimore (-3.5) over San Francisco (L, 9-7)
Green Bay (-3) over Chicago (L, 20-27)
Buffalo (+10) over Dallas (W, 24-25)

Against the Spread
LAST WEEK   6- 8- 0   .429
SEASON 27-29- 6 .484
THIS WEEK 5- 9- 0 .357
SEASON 32-38- 6 .461
Straight Up
LAST WEEK   5- 9      .357
SEASON 39-23 .629
THIS WEEK 11- 3 .786
SEASON 50-26 .658

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


One of my coworkers came by my desk this morning and brought a card for another coworker that was circulating among our team.

I wrote "Happy Birthday" and signed my name.

Then I read the note that came with the card, which explained that the card was a sympathy card, as the recipient's mother had just passed away.

I forked over the $2.75 for a new card.



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