Friday, December 26, 2008

Bike-a-thon, BBQ Challenge - 2009

Two important dates have just been set for some of my favorite fund raising activities:
  • Sunday, July 12th - The Philadelphia American Cancer Society Bike-a-thon
  • Saturday, August 8th - The Garry Maddox BBQ Challenge

The Bike-a-thon is a 64.6 bicycle mile ride from Philadelphia, PA to Buena, NJ. This will be my fifth year participating and I am looking forward to it already. It is an exhausting but exhilarating event, riding with thousands of fellow cyclists to support the fight against cancer. I will be posting a link to my personal page soon in case anyone wishes to support my ride by making a donation.

The BBQ Challenge is a cooking competition to support the Youth Golf & Athletics Program (YGAP). Founded by former Phillies centerfielder Garry Maddox, the YGAP provides a safe after-school environment for young people in the Philadelphia area. This past year was my first competition, where entered my barbecued ribs. Unfortunately I fell short of a prize, but had a great time cooking and mingling with so many BBQ enthusiasts. This year I will be drafting a posse to help me out; we will bring many smokers and grills, and make a variety of foods for entry into the competition and for our friends to enjoy.

Stay tuned for more information on both these events as they get closer. If you wish to participate in either event please contact me directly.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

November 22, 1963 - Where Were You?

Today is the 45th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy in Dallas, TX. Anyone who is old enough to remember can tell you where they were when they heard the news.

I was in the second grade at St Francis School in Ridgefield Park, NJ on 11/22/63. It was a Friday afternoon. I remember a kid coming into the classroom and handing the teacher a piece of paper. The teacher told us the President had been shot, then made us say a prayer, then sent us home. I went home and my mother was crying. What I remember the most about that day and the next three days was that time stood still for those three days.
Everything was closed. No store would dare be open, not in the Irish-Catholic town I lived in. I don't think that would happen today. Most of us went back to work the day after 9/11/2001.

When I was a kid, my friend Andy and I used to read JFK conspiracy books, and talk about one day making the pilgrimage to Dealey Plaza. Those plans came to fruition in November, 2005. Both of us (now all grown up) were in the Dallas area on business travel, and planned to meet-up on November 16th at the Sixth Floor Museum.

There was a laundry list of things to do, and we knew we would not have time to do it all, but we did most of it:
• Visit the Sixth Floor Museum – DONE!
• Inspect curbs for bullet casings – DONE!
• Lift manhole covers, search for evidence of second/third gunman – DONE!
• Check behind grassy knoll fence, search for evidence of second/third gunman – DONE!
• Re-enact limo ride from Elm St to Parkland Hospital – DONE!
• Re-enact shooting of JD Tippett and arrest of Oswald at Texas Theater – DONE!
• Re-enact shooting of Oswald by Ruby at Dallas police station - not done.
• Engage in conspiracy-theory discussions with local fanatics – DONE!
• Collect souvenir grass clippings form the Grassy Knoll – DONE!

Additional activities not on the original agenda:
• Re-create various photos from “Best Evidence”
• Visit the grave of 11/22 legend JD Tippett
• Visit the Conspiracy Museum

This historic meeting has been documented in words and photographs on the World's Greatest Website.

So, where were YOU on November 22, 1963?

Monday, November 17, 2008


I'm sitting here, still scratching my head, trying to understand just what it was that I spent over 3-1/2 hours watching this past Sunday afternoon, a "pro" football game which was supposed to be a mismatch. The Eagles had squandered a winnable game against the Giants the week before, but this game was their chance to knock off the Bengals and get back into the playoff hunt.

It didn't quite work out that way, and the Birds showed up seemingly hell-bent on loosing, handing the Bengals every opportunity, including 4 interceptions. The game was at 13-13 after regulation and the overtime was excruciating to watch. The clock mercifully, eventually ticked down to zero and ended.

As the great Eagles radio announcer Merrill Reese said, "If there was ever a game where neither team deserved to win, this is it."

Then we get this astonishing quote from Donovan McNabb, the Eagles QB for just about 10 years, at one time considered one of the best in the business:

"I've never been a part of a tie. I never even knew that was in the rule book," McNabb said after the game. "It's part of the rules, and we have to go with it. I was looking forward to getting the opportunity to get out there and try to drive to win the game. But unfortunately, with the rules, we settled with a tie."

I would expect the team leader to be some kind of a student of the game, and know what's in the rule book. Even a 9-year-old kid playing Madden knows you just get one OT in regular season.

I am ashamed of myself for spending almost an entire afternoon watching this fiasco.

But hey, I'm a fan, and that's what fans do.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


This is my first entry. I am suffering from Election Withdrawal and need to think of something to write about.

More later