Sunday, December 27, 2009

Who's a Tough Guy? Go Pope!

On Christmas Eve, as we were preparing to take our long winter's nap, the news flashed that Pope Benedict the XVI, (16th) for the non roman numerals people, was knocked off his feet by a woman jumping over a security barrier. All is well! Thank Goodness!!

Once the shock of the incident wore off my mind turned to who is a tough guy? Today if someone ran up to me an knocked me to the ground I'm not sure how I would respond. If you want to see it watch here. (Sorry about the video being in Italian) The whole words I would use thing would be a challenge. I'm sure the Pope doesn't have the same challenge that I would have.
Getting knocked down like that!! Wow! The Pope is 82 years old. With some help he was up and walked off to finish Christmas Mass. Impressive. It shows that someone is looking out for him.

All the best to Coach Meyer and his family

As an Alabama Football fan my first reaction to the initial news about Coach Urban Meyer was excitement. Our biggest competitor was wrapping it up and leaving!!! It seemed strange but I'd take the good news. You know the saying; don't look a gift horse in the mouth.

I'm sure my fellow SEC fans from the Eastern Division of the SEC were just as shocked, but willing to accept the departure. Comments?

Once seeing the press conference today from New Orleans there were questions asked and unanswered. What ever Coach Meyer and his family is dealing with, my hope, it is not serious and doesn't affect his quality of life. You, your family, your team, and fans are in my thoughts and prayers.

Isn't it amazing that all of the professional success in the world is unimportant when family and health come to the forefront. Jobs come and go. Family and health are a one shot deal. Get this wrong and there is no do over or instant replay.

Coach, it is my hope that whatever it is you are dealing with in private, is brief. You have again showed many a life lesson. All the best to you and your family.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Meet with Newest Member of the Family

Boo is in the house. She is our new black lab puppy that joined the family on Halloween.

Notice the picture of my lovely wife holding the puppy. This was an instance of me making a command decision. Yep, I said it. I didn't have spousal approval before deciding to add a mouth to feed to the crew.

The kids didn't believe that we had made the adoption. My two eldest daughters used language of doubt when first informed of the acquisition of the four legged friend. Surprise!

Boo, has been a great addition. We are getting use to the sharp puppy teeth. She has done very well with the doing her business outside. Will be sure to keep you all updated on Boo.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Cadet Carlton slays the Commodores

Dad, I hope you were watching football today. Your Cadets beat the Vanderbilt Commodores in overtime!!!. I’m sure you’ve heard already. The question I have, isn’t a Commodore a Navy rank? Not looking to far ahead.

It was nice to see the Golden Knights of the Hudson with a win over an SEC team. Okay, maybe not an SEC powerhouse. But, academically, these folks probably match up closer than any other team.

Cadet Alex Carlton, 186 pound sophomore, from Wilmington, Delaware, kicked a 42 yard field goal in overtime to beat Vandy. The game was played at the Michie Stadium on the West Point campus. Okay, it was close; the field ball did bounce off the upright, but, good is good.

At this point in the season the cadets are 3 and 3. The next team will be Temple in Philadelphia.
I can hear the cheer now. (The rocket!)

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Cultural Season Begins

It was a big night on Friday evening. The beginning of the cultural season. I'm not talking about the ballet or the start of the symphony musical season or the opera. This season does showcase some extremely talented participants. There is coordination, creativity, and grace in motion. The season that started last night has Stars, Blues, Flames, there are also Penguins, Rangers, Avalanche, and Canadians. The 2009 National League Hockey Season is underway.

Got Ice? Got a Stick and a Puck? We've got hockey again!!

This is the last season for the Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh. The Penguins will move to the Consol Energy Center for next season. It could be the last season for the Phoenix Coyotes in the desert. The chase for the coolest trophy in sports, The Stanley Cup, is on.

The Pittsburgh Penguins lifted the Stanley Cup banner last night in Pittsburgh before facing off against the New York Rangers. Here is some great video of the event. The Penguins won 3 to 2 over the New York Rangers. Tonight Coach Dan and the Pens face the New York Islanders.
The first of 85 cultural events with the pens have taken place. Can't wait for the next match.

Let culture reign! Let's follow the pens.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Surroundied bw Bulldog Spirit this morning! Yea ( spirit fingers )

Great Read - Lot's of fun

The last couple of evenings I have been escaping from the rat race and the buzz of the house to read for fun. Most of the time the books are work related or business topics. My most recent read was a blast. Through the generosity of a fellow blogger I was able to cruise through 300 plus pages of fun.

The book had to be good. The author has or had family in Alabama. (God's country). The author made me smile, laugh and take some time to consider the important things in life.

Through stories based in Utah, the State of Washington, and the Island of Crete, Robert Fulghum, author of All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, covers people and relationships. He also shared a perspective on life that does make you stop and wonder if we are smelling the roses in life.

It is obvious that Fulghum gets much of his inspiration from walking and observing all creatures big and small. He has magnificant insight into the people he sees and interacts with in his daily life. His life is a unique blend of experience that keeps you guessing.

His tips for conversation, called the List, makes the whole book worth the read. My favorite is his open engagement of people as he himself experiences life. My habit of walking along anywhere saying hello to people just to see the reaction doesn't seem so abnormal (note to wife) Okay, maybe as I said hello and good morning to New Yorkers on the sidewalks and the subways was a little over the top, but, Fulghum, makes me seem somewhat normal

For more on Robert Fulghum follow the link to his site. Learn more about his writings and read his frequent notes. Hope you enjoy. I did.

Pick up a copy of Fulghum's book: What on Earth Have I Done (Stories, Observations and Affirmations) Enjoy the topics and the read.
ISBN-13: 9780641990557
Pub. Date: September 2007

Friday, September 25, 2009

Chicken Soup - Saves a Puny Man

Ms. Ann to the rescue. The finest provider of confections in our part of the world. Is also the saver of men!

On Wednesday yours truly was being pounded by a bug. A temp of 103, a sore throat, and general wimpiness. So, being home from work I decide while laying in the bed, and not wanting to go anywhere, to make a connection to the outside world through Facebook and Twitter. Just to update the world on my lack of well being. Okay, a lesson; if you tell it, people will respond.

The responses came literally from all over the country. This wining thing when sick garnered some serious sympathy and provided good cheer to the one hiding behind his woobie. Ms Henry asked if there was anything she could do from over 60 miles away. So putting me out of my misery would take some time. (Not seriously considered, just a figure of speech) A note from Mom Said So in Connecticut hoping it wasn't the flu. A number of well wishers from throughtout the southeast. Then, THE Golden Ticket!

To put you in the frame of mind you have to have seen Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Either version, old or new. To understand the pleasure and unadulterated joy that Mr. Charlie Bucket must have felt upon finding the last of the tickets that would grant him access to the land of confections that Mr. Wonka makes inside his factory.

Ms Ann, the local maker of perfection confections and other meals of renowned (Annie Cakes) offered.....Holding your breath now; some Chicken Soup to save the wimpy! Mind you, this isn't the stuff from the can. This is the real poultice to ward off what ails you! The message. "Chicken soup is on the way!" Wohoo! I have been granted access to the kitchen of Ms Ann. I began to feel light headed. I didn't know if it was the bug or the emotion of finally getting through the steel doors of Ms Wonka's factory of goodies. Later it was determined to be the excitement of the goodies. I had to start feeling better to have food provided by Ms. Ann.

Too call this magic elixir just Chicken Soup is like telling Hussein Bolt that he is kind of fast. This stuff when it arrived by special certified courier was magical. Real Chicken Soup. Home made with large chucks of poultry, a liquid that made the sickness shoot from my body like Big John Coffee did for Tom Hanks character in the book and movie the Green Mile. This stuff caused some serious recovery.

There were also non sick people in the house that were able to enjoy the magic pourage. It caused general good cheer and happiness throughout the house.

Ms. Ann, you should get a license and a patent on that stuff. Maybe you could feed it to people out there managing our economy. Man alive I just know the recession would be over! Powerful, powerful stuff.

Thanks for coming to my rescue. As always, you are my hero!

Newest Wilson Arrives on Scene

Congratulations to Erin and Stu on the birth of Stuart A. Wilson, Jr. He is beautiful. The little guy in the blanket! So there is no confusion. We are all happy he is here and glad to report that Mom and baby are doing well.

The newest Mr. Wilson made his appearance in the world last Friday about midday. At this writing big sister is adjusting well to being a big sister. This is an important role to be the older, and wiser, and better looking sibling. (Enough about me!)

Lots of happiness and joy as Stu, the dad, has already installed the hoop at the end of the crib. Stu Jr. or SJ. as he likes to be called when hanging with other kids, has to shoot 10 free throws before he gets the stuff that does the body good!

No, Coach Williams. It is too early for him to commit. He is also considering the MIT Scholarship at this time.

(My thanks to Ms M. the photographer. She was joannie on the spot with the pics. Wish we could have been there with you.)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Thelma and Louise are coming to my house.

There is a big day at the Wilson house tomorrow. The ladies will arrive.
The event is taking place because our wash machine of 13 years gave up the ghost last weekend. In our homestead there is no more important appliance than the mechanical cleaner of clothes. With a family of 6 the thing gets a work out. I couldn't even guess the number of miles the spin cycle had achieved.. A quick back of the envelope estimate.... the thing had to be in the multi million mile club. We did get our moneys worth out of the olde thing.
Like an old football lineman the appliance was pulled from service and unceremoniously benched. Taken from the house to the curb, then picked up by two gentlemen seeing an opportunity to gain value from the sheet metal of the old plan vanilla white machine. It was even raining slightly as the old boy was dragged the last mile. (Dabbing tears from the corner of my eyes)
What is red, has a twin sister, and named for two characters in an ultimate chick flick? The two new home essentials, named Thelma and Louise will take up residence on Friday morning. Yes, we are doing our part to raise the national output of durable goods. Mr. Bernanke, this may not show up in your tan book, but we are doing our part to contribute to the economic recovery.
There is much excitement about the arrival of the ladies. It appears that my wife has felt the repression of Mr. Henry Ford relating to our laundry equipment for a long time. For many years, the manufacturers of said equipment, basically have caused the space in our home to have any color equipment we wanted as long as it was white.
In our almost 18 years of marriage I didn't realize the angst the color of the appliances had caused.. Even my children have felt deprived by not having pigment in the steel. How was a guy to know. So, in choosing, the emancipation has taken place. Free at last, we're free at last, good gracious almighty we are free at last.
Ms Thelma and Ms Louise will be red. (Ms Ann this not a political statement and no one from any group or media outlet participated in this decision. ). This was a critical selection criteria for the new household assistants. I'm still trying to figure out how these vital pieces of equipment have already been accepted by name in the household. I have seen the naming of a living breathing pet take more time and much more deliberation.All are a buzz about the arrival of the ladies.
We have already confirmed that they are spending their last night of restfulness at the local big box retailer. Hope they are rested up because tomorrow, these beautiful ladies, named for outlaws, will begin working their way up the million miler achievement test.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Spending time with my youngest lady

My youngest and I had some good quality time together this week. We attended events together, went to football games, a bonfire at a friend’s house, did bedtime reading, just hung out and traveled together. It was very special to see and hear life from the perspective of a six year old. Don't get me wrong, chronologically she is only six. She is beginning to outpace me in the maturity area due to the influences of her older siblings and her Mom. She is lots of fun and has a heart the size of the state of Texas. The time together will be the subject of a three post series.

Little Brother/Little Sister

Sweet thing did ask this week if she could be a big sister. This caused her Mom and me to give each other a couple of looks. It appears that Dabba has heard from friends at school about how you become a big brother or big sister! WOW! (This is the five alarm fire announcement that puts you on your toes)

My though is oh! I can't wait to see what she has learned after only about four weeks in Kindergarten. And I was wondering what the President was going to say to the kids. At this point I'm thinking his message, whatever it is, was going to be is kind of late!

"So, Mom and Dad, if we put our name on the list we can have a baby brother or sister!" More looks exchanged between the parental units. Relief! And confusion is the first two things after hearing the request. Okay, so science and biology class in Kindergarten haven't advanced that much since I was in over forty years ago, expect for the fire and the electricity thing. (Mimi, we have another entry for the book!) Not sure about the list but this will be an okay discussion.

Smiles now appear on the face of the relieved parents. See, as the six year old explains, there is a family in school that has recently applied for adoption. So, putting your name on a list is how you get a baby brother or sister. And, Dabba, doesn't want to be left out. She also has an Aunt and Uncle that live near Washington DC that are expecting any day now so there have been some baby discussions. Again, relief about the biological understanding thing. Thinking this might be a good time to have a redirect about a pet!

The topics passed after we discussed we might want to be off the list while we focus on her and her other siblings. There are hugs exchanged. I can tell this is not the last time we will have this discussion. Cause being the "baby" in the family isn't much fun if you don't have a little brother or little sister.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Thank goodness it is Friday! Football , family , and frosty adult beverages

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Is watching Kassie and her volleyball team win the first 2 games leading !2 to 2 in the third

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Happy Blogoversary to Me

Yep, a couple of days ago I celebrated by second anniversary as a blogger.

Can't believe it. This blog has survived two trips around the sun! Don't know that I have solved world hunger, done anything to reduce greenhouse gases or even righted any wrongs in the society. But, I'm still on occasion cranking out some text and sharing my views even if it is just me listening sometimes!

Being reflective when I started this process I didn't know what to expect. Had no idea what would happen when I decided to connect to the electronic world. All I can say is that I would have missed the experience of a lifetime.

I have met some great people in parts of the country and the world that I would not have usually had the opportunity to experience. And, it has been a learning process. Personally and technologically. The names of these folks alone tell you something about their take on the world. The Nap Warden, Wilson Six......Egel's Nest, Cause Mom Said So, A Free Man Down Under, Dad Gone Mad. Great people and great stories.

There has been laughter, tears, smiles, and frowns. Topics have ranged from sports, politics, stupid people tricks, blogs about my crew and updates about family and friends.

This has been lots of fun. Looking forward to more posts that cover topics from A to Z.

Happy Blogoversary to me!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Bulldog Red Wins 16 to zero

Bulldogs Win. H starts the game as an end.

The Bulldog Red team won this morning sixteen to zero over the visiting Wildcats squad. Number 8 was out there in the offensive end position. He provided some great blocking on the end of the line. It was lots of fun to watch.

Here is the victor supported by his own Cheerleader. It was a wonderful day for some football.

The day started with the application of the bulldog logo to the helmet. An hour before the game. So I stopped and said hello to some good friends. Next thing we are working the concession stand. Then I'm working the grill making burgers and hot dogs. Cooking! Putting burgers and dogs in the bun then wrapping the goodies for sale. We had fun. I was glad to get to the game.

Will keep everyone updated throughout the season.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Public Service Announcement - Free Chicken

Time for some free Chick-fil-a sandwiches. Go to Chick-fil-a to get a free sandwich on Saturday over the Labor Day weekend.

Hey, it is Labor Day weekend and it is time for some football and some free chicken. Yep, I said free chicken.

Now for those of you who are living in parts of the uncivilized world; towns or countries that don't have a Walmart and a Chick-fil-a, you have no idea what you are missing. This is some of the best chicken sandwiches that you can get. As their tag line states, they didn't invent chicken, just the chicken sandwich, and boy howdy. They did a great one.

They also have some of the best tea in the world. Now. There is only one way to get tea in the south and that is called tea. To the rest of the world that is called sweet tea.

Anyway, just wanted to give you all a heads up that this weekend you can get a free chicken sandwich just by going into one of their locations. The rule is all you have to have is a logo of your favorite team. See for the rules.
Have a great Labor Day weekend. Go football, go chicken!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Bumper Sticker - Concealment?

On the way to work today I was following a pick up truck down the road. As we came to the light we slowed then stopped. I was somewhat paying attention at 6:20 in the morning when the bumper stickers caught my eye.

Now, bumper stickers are the graffiti of the socially conscious, the obnoxious, educational notes, or just personal mission advertisements. Not sure. I do question why people will stick stuff on their cars. But, that is the choice of the owner.

Some put one or two stickers on their vehicles. Others apply enough of the sticky messages that it makes you wonder if the driver can see the other vehicles on the highway.

The sticker I saw this morning, at first, I consider a joke, then a potential warning. Then I was just perplexed at the message. The bumper sticker announced that the driver was a member of the United States Concealed Carry Association. Hum!?

What on earth? A bumper sticker telling me that the driver may be carrying a concealed weapon? Doesn't the bumper sticker, making the announcement, defeat the purpose of the concealment? Okay, it was early in the morning. But, I did give the driver a little more room! So the bumper sticker may have had the intended affect. I was hopeful that the driver wasn't a fellow employee. Sorry, but I did wonder if the driver would turn in to the Post Office.

As I passed by the driver I noticed his very large black cowboy hat and smiled thinking that I know his secret. He is packing and he told me but it is concealed.

When I got home this evening I checked to see if this was a social comment or a real bumper sticker. I did learn that there is a group out there called The Ultimate Resource of the Armed Citizen, the United States Concealed Carry Association. So, it appears to be the real deal

Tomorrow I will be cautious as I approach the trucks at the intersection.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

You never know what your day will bring

While in Washington DC to visit my brother in the hospital I had one of those moments that makes you realize that you never know what the day can bring. As my brother and I walked the hallway of the hospital we saw a group of people come on to the ward. Instantly, I recognized the person and tried to do the cool, let's not make to big a deal, try not to look like a groupie thing. We smiled and headed down the hall on our walk.

Anyway, the person of interest was in the hospital to visit the combat wounded troops! How neat is that. As we learned from the people on the hallway she had already spent time with the troops at Walter Reed Hospital earlier in the week.

Okay, I was trying not to be to geeky or even getting in the way of what was going on. I just stood and observed as she and her small team with military escort visited the rooms of the combat wounded. WOW! How special is that. It wasn't the drive by and shake a hand kind of visit either. She was spending some real time with the soldier and the family. Just getting to see her move through the hallway was honor enough.

To me this is one of the good news stories that never makes it out to the world.

After she had spent over three hours on the ward she made time to say hello to my brother, my sister in law, and my Mom. My brother was in the hospital recovering from some serious surgery. She talked and took pictures and shared her time. My brother is a huge music fan so it helped his spirits and healing for sure. The smile on his face was electric.

As she was leaving I asked if I could have a picture. Yep, that is me and Stevie Nicks.

I really appreciated what Ms Nicks did for my brother that day. Just sharing her time and spirit made the day that much brighter.
As I said, you never know who you will see. Last time my brother was in the hospital some guy named George W. stopped by for a hello and pictures.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

A new low! Stealing from a 70 year old!

A friend of mine received a call that she had won the "Publisher's Clearinghouse" Millions. At first, that sounds very exciting. A check was in the mail. Then something happened to the check. Then there was a fee, paid through Western Union, that would free up the check. It has escalated from there. Once the fee was paid the "package" was to be FedEx'ed the next day. Of course. Nothing arrives and there is some other hurdle. It has gone on for weeks.

These crooks are organized. They have people who are pretending to be an international banker from New York City, a Custom's person at the Dallas airport, a Publisher's clearinghouse rep, and another character that calls to provide prize updates. Places like Puerto Rico, Costa Rico, New York City, Dallas, Texas, and Memphis, Tennessee are involved in this intrigue. If this wasn't so hurtful to my friend the creativity shown by the crooks would make a great movie.

What bothers me is that there are a lot of public company names being used in the scam. When each has been contacted they have been polite but haven't helped much. The authorities that have been contacted all think the process is a scam. But, they can't help. Each suggesting we talk to another. My frustration is this can't be the only person in the U.S. facing this dilemma. When you call "Publisher's Clearinghouse" they have two phone options for if you have received a communication or believe you are being scammed! Obviously, not an isolated event.

After escalating from dollars to get the gift it appeared to have stopped. Then a the crooks are back. These folks are calling promising something that isn't coming. Then they propose a solution to get the money paid in back to my friend. But it requires another activity to enrich them.

Suggestions on how to get these people stopped? I would like to personally find the scum bags that are taking advantage of my friend in her 70's.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Have the politicians forgotten who they work for?

Maybe it is time for all elected officials to do a little review of their job description. Or, maybe it is time for us, you know, the We, in We the People, in the Constitution, to do the review. Apparently, the 535 people who sit in Congress, both houses, have forgotten who they represent! In my world that word "represent" means who they work for....their boss. Most of us, regular people, have a boss.

It appears that once the election is over the people elected from other areas of the country, committee chairs, and a members of their political groups, Speakers, Whips, majority and minor leaders, the activity groups, become more important than their boss! The people they represent! Hello, remember us!

I was taught a simple lesson in school. School work first. Extracurricular activities follow. Any others out there in electronic world heard the same message? Last Monday night I received a refresher in the message at my daughter's freshmen orientation for High School. So, the message must be time tested and practiced.

Watching the responses from the "elected" representatives at the Federal level as they listen to the VoX Populi ask them tough questions is astounding to me. Obviously, the people who work for us haven't faced a status report, an evaluation, or had a face to face with the boss, on their progress in a while. They seem surprised that as the economic conditions in the rest of the country have changed that we the People are expecting better service from those who represent us!. In regular people terms; we are expecting more for less not less for the future. Maybe they need to hear from VoX Boss! (Okay, not a real Latin term, meaning voice of the boss!)

I'm seeing the real surprise in their faces, both on television and in person, as the Members of Congress are being asked about their spending, their attendance, their knowledge of the facts, and why they voted in a manner that didn't represent the boss. My fellow Americans, maybe it is time we start paying greater attention to what the custodian's of our funds are doing when the go to work. I sure plan to let my two senators, representative, and President know that, We the people, are on the job. I'm also looking into the state, county and local officials to see what they have been up to.

Hey, hear me out! The frustration I am feeling is that I haven't been watching my employees as closely as I should have. Shame on me! Just giving my employees fair warning that the boss and his buddies are now comparing notes on their work performance.

In this call to action what should you do? Find out the names of the people who work for you at the federal, state, county and municipal level. See how they are doing. In person. Not through the news filters, or the notes they send us, or based on any special interest group report card. It is time for We the people to get our employees working for us.

I'd like to hear your thoughts.

Catching up with friends

Over the past four days I have had the chance to catch up with my friends, not just a call or an email. Or the wave on the past each other highway or at a child's sporting events. This was honest to goodness sit down and spend awhile.

Explored my sisters business. Watered plants and learned that she has over 80 different kinds of Japanese Maple Trees. Also, learned a valuable lesson about chameleons. (Later post with pictures)

We spent real time with friends and family. Loved it!
Can't wait for the day to get started so we can do some more.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Yep, My son is playing football.

My son is playing football. I'm excited for him.

Starting with a discussion last Monday at the local pool the young man shared his desire to play. This was news. He hadn't expressed any interest. then bingo.

So, this past week has been a flurry of activity to make it happen. All of this fell on dear old Mom to get things together. Jen was buying cleats, football pants and a chin strap.

I'm a little jealous. H, received a new helmet, the kind with the vents cut in the crown of the helmet and real padding inside. This would have prevented a few headaches in high school and college. He looks great in his football gear.

He appears to be either headed for the position of running back or cornerback. When chased he covers some ground quickly.

Will keep you posted on the progress of the Red team.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

On the Way to Boy Scout Camp

A couple of weeks ago H and I were traveling from Washington DC to Chicago then to Kansas City. Our flights, on Southwest Airlines, were to take H to Boy Scout camp. He had been with his Mom and sisters visiting the relatives all over the Northeastern United States.

H called it having "Man Time" since it was just the two of us. There have been a couple of times in the past two months were it was guy time. We both had a lot of fun. As we landed in Chicago the pilot allowed H to look into the cockpit since H had showed interest. The crew were very gracious to the curious traveler.

Once at Midway airport we were able to find a Ben & Jerry's and the Blues Brothers. There was a picture moment for sure. There was also a stop for the "Man food", some chicken nuggets for the conoseur of everything chicken.The picture above is where H stayed at the Frank Childress Scout Ranch in Diamond, Missouri. His Webelos pack spent the week earning badges. We had a couple of more days of man time on and off. H camped and I went home and to work. Visits for a couple evenings allowed us to catch up on the day's activities.

Chance to Win a Jersey or a Cadillac

Here are the code words needed for the Cadillac Ride of your Life Sweepstakes.
All you need to do is add in your email address and then add the code word for a chance to win. I kept a number of these on a piece of paper throughout the tour. The others I have researched.

If you win a jersey or a Cadillac please enjoy

They are in alphabetical order

disc wheel
feed zone
rpm performance

I appreciate the the people at Versus that provided the coverage to the Tour of Lance, oh! sorry, Tour de France. This was been a great tour. They go to Paris tomorrow to wrap up this years event.

It began in Monaco, through Italy, Switzerland, Spain, Andorra, and all over France. I enjoyed seeing the Alps, the Pyrenees Moutains, the Mediterrean, rivers, valleys, fields, over all of the parts of France and its neighboring countries.

The athletes, like Hincappie, Contador, Schleck's, Armstrong, Karpettis, Wiggins, Martin, Kloden, and Lipheimer. What these men to day in day out on a bicycle is amazing.

Can't wait till next year.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Watching Wipe out on Television

If you haven't see the show on television called Wipeout you are missing a humorous session. Can you believe people would do this? There are a number of very strange obstacles that dish out some serious physical punishment. as the contestants go against the clock for money.

My kids can't help but chuckle as they watch the contestants to take the abuse that the designers of the game show dish out. It is tough to watch some spots.

Granted this isn't a mentally challenging 30 minutes of television. It is funny to hear the Monday morning quarterbacking that goes on with the suggestions to the people who are actually on the gameshow.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Spending "Man Time"

This past Monday I had the opportunity to bring my son along on a business trip. Nothing fancy, a couple of hours trip, in a rental car, to see two of my employer’s locations. We had a great time. H, called it "Man Time." Just us guys.

Don't get us wrong. The two of us males love the females in our homestead. But every now and then we need to step out of the estrogen ocean onto a testosterone island.

We rode along together, talking, eating, making jokes, practicing our Scout knowledge and just being guys. Topics ranged from his camp physical that day, potentially a whole other post, to the rental car, to cool discovery topics. We discussed how my dad had taken me along on trips when I was H's age. (I can see the look in his eye when he thinks about me being a kid!) It makes me smile.

We had a great time. H still doesn't understand what we did when we didn't bring along, IPod’s, Nintendo’s, power connections, etc. to make trips entertaining. That look I discussed comes back!

The rental car I mentioned came into the trip when I developed car trouble on the ride home from work earlier in the afternoon. I commute about 65 miles to work each way so car trouble takes on a life of its own. Anyway, I dropped my car at the shop to be worked on and called the company that picks you up to deliver a car. You have to be standing there at the auto shop when the thing pulls up. One of the mechanics laughs out loud and says, "What is that?" Instantly, I knew that would have to be the car I was going to be using until my car was repaired.

Some more background. On the way to the shop, H hears me making the rental car reservation. "Hey, dad, will we get a cool car for the trip? How about an Expedition, or a Red Mustang, you know something cool." At nine cool is important. I'm thinking about price and functionality. With only 45 minutes until all of the rental car places in town close, I'm not being too picky.

Picture this rental car. Red, four doors, and very small. It was a Chevy Aveo! The car came with crank windows and only plunger door locks! It did have the new car smell. My son had never ridden in a car with crank windows. So we didn't look so manly in the four cylinder, Flintstone mobile. But, hey! After some giggling and hand adjusting the side mirrors, we were off on our guy time adventure. Ah, answer to H's earlier question, very low cool factor.

While at the work site, H, met the other adults there. I was being the proud dad, when he extended his hand to say hello and greet them. Nice going! H met a man that was from New Zealand. There was a discussion about the accent. H also hung out with a guy I work with who talked with him, gave piggy back rides, and called him H. There was a lot of knuckle pounding going on that evening.

The trip home at 2:00 a.m. was a good bit quieter than the ride over. He hung tough keeping me company as long as he could.

This was a great trip. I'm looking forward to the next time we get to spend some "Man time" together.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend

My thanks to all who have served our country in any capacity, either in a foreign or domestic posting. The service may have been on the land, in the air, at sea, or in a neighborhood. I would especially remember and thank those who have given their all in service to the country.

I have seen the headstones in Arlington National Cemetery, the Post Cemetery @ West Point, New York, the battlefields at Gettysburg, fields in Asia, Europe, and countless other places around the globe where Americans of every, race, creed, color, religion, and ethnic background are together in their final resting place. The places read like history lessons of military battles, events, or accidents, and tragedies where the individual was a participant performing service for our nation.

Please remember that the ultimate purpose of the weekend. To set aside a day out of the year for the nation to remember, reflect and honor those who have served. Take time as you go about your day to honor and remember those who have given so much, paying the ultimate price. Remember those who have fallen and the families and children that are without that member of their family. Remember, these people who gave so that we can have the freedom, liberty and independence each and every day.

All the best on this Memorial Day weekend.

Penguins Win Again, Lead the Conference Finals 3-0

It appears that the Pittsburgh Penguins will be playing Tuesday, May 26 to reach the Stanley Cup Finals. Currently the Penguins lead the Eastern Conference Finals 3 games to none over the Carolina Hurricanes.
Sid “no longer the kid” Crosby and his Penguin teammates have been on a roll since about midway through the last series with the Washington Capitals. As the league leader in playoff scoring, 14 goals and 12 assists, he continues to push the puck against the Canes. Other members of the Penguins team have stepped up their game to put on a display of hockey skills so far not matched by their opponents.

Marc-Andre Fleury, in goal for the Pens, has been keeping the Canes off the scoreboard. Fleury, who struggled a bit against Washington, has seen the defense in front of him rise to the challenge.

Tuesday night should be interesting. Go Pens!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Father and Daughter Day

Today was a lot of fun. My five year old and I spent most of the day together. I had a chance to watch her play two soccer games. She scored 6 goals.

We then did team pictures. Watched her eldest sibling referee an indoor soccer game.

We did lunch, a hair cut, some shopping, a trip to Sonic, a trip to Petland and then some veg time. You know you can learn a lot by listening to a five year old. She was lots of fun and had some very interesting observations of what the world is like.

As we waited for the haircut we looked through the books of different haircuts. We played a game of guess what haircut the other wanted. She picked the George Clooney haircut for me then the Goth guy. I selected the Shirley Temple curly for her. She laughed. And I picked some of the haircuts that swoop over the eye, I called them one eye pictures. She laughed.

When we were shopping she picked out one of the models on a Kohl's picture and said it looked like me! Oh, yea. Who says love isn't blind!

When we got home we had a couple of messages from a friend wanting her to play. She had spent a long day with me. Graciously she mentioned that she would like to play with her buddy. Looks like I'm gonna have to hang with the spouse!

Hope you had a great Saturday.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Stanley Cup Playoffs - Penguins Win

4.17.09 - The Pittsburgh Penguins, the National Hockey League franchise in the Steel City, won on two shots from Bill Guerin. He scored the first Penguin's and last goal of the game. The most important shot being in overtime. The shot hit the post and beat the Flyer's goalie. This win lifted the Penguins to a two games to zero lead in the best of five series.

Guerin, a 38 year old player, experienced his first game winning goal of his seventeen year hockey career.

The Penguins will now travel to Philadelphia for a match against the Flyers on Sunday. This could be the potential deciding match for the Eastern Conference final.

Marc-Andre Fleury was the winning goal tender for Pittsburgh.

The game on Sunday will be televised on NBC. The schedule shows the 23rd and the 27th for the next two games should they be necessary.

Let's hope that Sid and the kids can complete the sweep!

Go Penguins.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Beach comes to the House

Over the weekend I acquired some play sand for the kids. The weather turned so we didn't get to put the sand in the kids sand box. This caused great disappointment for a young lady in my house.

The 100 pounds of sand has been in the back of my car since Saturday.

At bed time on Wednesday a request was made to put the sand in the garage so it was be available for the sandbox. When I procrastinated the sand made another round time to work with me. Oops!

As I headed home this evening I called my lovely spouse to let her know I was on the road to the house. As I finish talking Jen says a young lady would like to speak with you. Ok!

"Dad, could you please remember to leave the sand in the garage so we can get the sandbox opened?" This little voice just wanted to have a sandbox.

This little project manager had already reminded her mother about the sandbox. She also mentioned to me that she would meet me at the house.

How can you disappoint that persistence?

Anyway, I pulled up in the driveway. A certain young lady comes to me to remind me about guess what?

Just to let you know this story has a very happy ending. The kids had their feet in "The Beach" this afternoon. There were lots of helpers to move the sand, clean the sand turtle, get the supplies needed. Next there was the removal of shoes and socks then, feet in "The Beach"

There are a number of happy kiddos at our house. All over $6 dollars worth of sand and some family time getting "The Beach" ready. What a great evening.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter to All

The family celebrated a wonderful Easter today. The little people awoke to check the arrival of the Easter Bunny. (Thank goodness it wasn't the butt crack of dawn.) There were some goodies for each of the kids.

We then did breakfast, church, lunch, and family time. The weather wasn't the best for Easter. It was rainy and very cold. A little pre-planning allowed for the festivities to continue. The Easter pictures were taken indoors this year.

Our crew did some practice egg hunts on Saturday. We had heard the weather wasn't going to be great so we hunted for some goodies in the backyard.

All had a great time. A number of members of the family celebrated that Lent was over allowing the consumption of chocolate, ice cream and some other things that were given up for the last forty days.

Hope all had a wonderful Easter. We did.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Interesting Weekend

This was quite a weekend. It rained on Friday and was cold. Saturday we had lots of cold and snow. Sunday, it was beautiful and the snow melted rapidly.

We had car repairs over the weekend when the spouse's car failed to start in the garage on Saturday evening. With our schedule we were all headed in different directions. Quick modifications to the plans, a call to AAA and remembering there were jumper cables saved the evenings events. On Sunday, Auto Zone gets a big kudos, in a separate post, for great service at the right time.

We had multiple kids doing the spend the night thing and a soccer game on Sunday. There was a school project on the Common Cold and family movie night.

Today as I passed Tractor Supply there was a sign for Ducks and Chicks. I first took my eldest daughter in when we were out running errands. She thought it was cool to see the little poultry. Later in the afternoon the two youngest went back with me.

All got to hold a Duck and a Chick. The Tractor Supply associate keep offering to put a number of them in the box for us to take home. This gentlemen is obviously single. Okay, it is only $4.25 for a duck. And $1.95 for a chicken. Well within my spending range. But, with the house on the market and the fact these cute things will be big enough to be out of the enclosure shown above this wouldn't be a marriage enhancing move on my part. I did think about it. Lots of fun. My parents acquired some Ducks and a Rabbit one year for Easter. Great memories!

Did you know that the air holes for a duck on on his beak? The little duck not only has webbed feet but there are claws on them. When you pick one up it makes a good bit of noise. When you put it back the other Duck buddies come over to check on the well being of the comrade.

To wrap up the weekend the family grilled out this evening. Big fun. Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

March Madness has arrived

This year March Madness has a completely new meaning in our family. Usually March Madness is associated solely with the NCAA Basketball tournament. Not this year, my youngest brother, A Division III Assistant Basketball Coach, and his lovely wife welcomed the arrival of their first child, Grace Ann, to the world early in the month of March.
Another of my brothers and his lovely wife celebrated the arrival of their granddaughter, Gabriella, within the last week. My sister and my brother in law celebrated the 18th birthday of their son, my nephew. (I was there the day he arrived and still can’t believe that much time has elapsed.) Duncan Hines and the Great American Cookie Company will be able to achieve their future P&L’s this month each year with the contributions from the family.

What a great family time! We can’t wait to meet all of the newest additions to the family. The pictures are beautiful.

On the basketball side of the house the last week has been very interesting. All of the planned first seeds in the NCAA tournament have lost. Pitt, North Carolina, Oklahoma, all dropped games in their conference tournaments, oops! This year’s tournament should be lots of fun. This will also be a tough week. There are over 364 Division I basketball teams. Two Hundred and ninety nine of the basketball teams will be on the outside of the event looking in. It should be fun. Time to develop the brackets. Let the basketball madness commence.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

It’s Spring Break at our House

That wonderful event that all school age children love has arrived at our house, SPRING BREAK! For the next week, the kids are out of school.

In our house that means four kids are now available to assist their parental units in whatever tasks, deemed appropriate, for the development of their character. Parental speak for completing chores, cleaning rooms, and fluffing the parents pillows! Yea right! It is nice to dream.

This week has caused some confusion for my 5 year old. Since she is out of school, she would like to know when I get Spring Break! I can’t wait to see my boss on Monday morning. (With the economy the way, it is I’m sure it might not be the right time to ask!) Nevertheless, my darling daughter has hit on a concept that I think should be explored. With vision like this why can’t they wave the constitutional requirement that the President has to be thrity six years old. I wonder how she can do in Economics.)

We are scheduling the week of sleepovers, social events, mall trips, movies, travel to places, activities, and veg time to have a great break. If the scheduling is right, I may see each child every other day as they spend time with their extended families. We use that term for the families of the friends they hang out with. We joke that my son has three hyphenated last names since the families of his buddies kind of claim him as one of their own. (I wonder if we can work that all the way through college? Oops! There I go using my out loud voice again.)

Spring Break is also the time that all children believe that everything is possible. The question was asked; Can’t we just get in the car and ride to see the grandparents? To add context to the discussion we live pretty close to the geographic center of the United States. The relatives live in the far Northeastern corner of the United States and on the East Coast. Another option was proposed by my eight-year-old son. He decided he would like to go to California for the break. We used the chance to do map reading and mapquesting to determine it would only take about 27 hours to get there. Mr. Math was on top of that saying, “it is only 1 and 3/24th of a day to get there.”(Parental pride in the math skill!) (Parental shock in realizing that he believes that I can drive that many hours without bathroom stops and sleep to arrive on the coast!) By the way, I love the sense of adventure that is developing.

We are getting ready for day two of Spring Break. The kids are using the opportunity to sleep in since most stayed up late on the first full day of Spring Break.

Friday, February 13, 2009

O'Connell Knights Men's Basketball Game on Television

O'Connell Men's Basketball Varsity Basketball Team will host DeMatha Catholic High School February 17, 2009. The game will be on television.

Game time will be 9:00 PM, eastern time and will be televised on ESPNU.

We'll be watching the team and Coach Stu. That's the guy on the left.

Go Silver and Blue!!!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Hey! I'm gonna be an Uncle Again

Congratulations to Stuart and Erin. My brother and sister-in-law made the big announcement on that there is going to be another Wilson in the world.

I am sure that big sister Sidney is very excited.

Very cool another niece or nephew. The expected arrival is August!

My crew is excited that another cousin is on the way!

Time to start the name game.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Happy Birthday Boodles

Happy Birthday to you.

In the winter snows with Maria. The friends that do spend the nights, soda and whales.
Ms. Rock band hair. When she saw David Cook, the American Idol, winner and Randy Jackson.

With her friend Kennedy. Two of Charlie's Angels.

At age 2 1/2. The intense look with her dad before she was the flower girl in a wedding.

Becca the multi sport athlete. Gymnastics, Soccer, Cheerleading. She is competitive at every sport, game or even a staring contest.

Here she is at her 9th birthday party at the Flip shop.

It's the surfer girl. She is also a great student, avid reader, and a lover of music and her computer time.

Yep, eleven years ago today in St. Vincent's Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama, Miss Rebecca A. Wilson came into the world. My world is better because she is here.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Chef In Training

This Sunday morning we were treated to a bacon and eggs breakfast. The fun part was the chef who prepared the meal. Hayden, our eight year old has been an accomplished preparer of eggs from shell to table on his own for sometime. He learned the preparation of scrambled eggs from his 13 year old sister who learned from the family patriarch of the Egg, Papa. Those are some big credentials in our family.

This Sunday morning the elite club of egg chef's has added a new member. Hayden left the kitchen in the middle of egg preparation to find a step stool then without prompting involved his sister, Abigale, at 5, in to the egg making club.

Care was taken to ensure safety. Direction about how to stir, the caution about holding the handle while cooking. The knowledge was transferred from one to another. Pictured above, both fresh from the shower worked together to make the eggs.

At the end of the cooking session both sat and ate together explaining the outcome. I knew it was a hit when little sister ask big brother if she could help again next week.

Hey Papa. You have another member of the family working on the title of best Egg Maker!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Steelers vs. Cardinals = The Big Game

I am a huge Pittsburgh Steelers fan and I have been for a long time. So, the game tomorrow against the Arizona Cardinals will be special. However, I'm not just routing for the Steelers because I am a fan. I heard a story on the radio that said every time the Steelers win the economy gets better. How can I argue with that logic.

I also comment on the game with a touch of sadness. This will be the last real football game until August. College or Pro, the best we will get are a few classic games on the sports networks. I'll have to make the best of the game.

The activity within the big game is the advertisements. I had the chance to see the previews of the Budweiser commercials on Friday. They have done a nice job again this year. My favorite is the cost cutting meeting!

Everyone enjoy the big game safely! And, by the way, Go Steelers!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

I'm hooked on Facebook

Okay, confession time. I have a problem, kind of.. its called Facebook. Since I established an account I have found friends, family, former neighbors, fraternity brothers, roommates, people I have worked with, and people who knew these people. The fun is, I originally met these people while living all over the world, from grade school, high school. college, and other activities in life.

It has been lots of fun to reconnect with all of these very fine people. The problem I mentioned was that I can't help wanting to find them all. As soon as I find one I remember three others that I haven't seen, heard of, or thought about in more years than I care to remember.
My lovely wife is the one who introduced me to Facebook. The fun has been watching the number of contacts grow as we find individual and mutual friends that we have known over the years.
The reason I am making this statement on my blog is that all of my Facebook activity has caused me not to keep up with my blogging buddies. Okay, I'm scum. I'll try to do better. However, if you don't see updated blog might check in with me on Facebook.
Have a wonderful day.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Happy Anniversary - Patty and Terry

Today my Mother-in- law and Father-in-law are celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. Wow! I would like to wish them a very happy anniversary.
On January 11, 1969 - Patty Dimick and Terry Amidon walked down the isle of St. Michael's Church in Brattleboro, Vermont to become Mr. and Mrs. Terry Amidon. They have been dancing together ever since.

If you would like to see an exciting tribute to the Amidon's follow the link to my wife's blog.

Happy Anniversary Terry and Patty.

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Gift that keeps on giving

I would like to thank my sister for a very cool Christmas gift. On Christmas Day I opened a gift card from Barnes & Noble. We love bookstores, either live or online.

So later on Christmas Day I decided to do some book browsing. Then I found my choice. The Barnes & Noble Classic Series. In a few quick clicks on the Barnes and Noble website I was the proud owner of 15 new books.

A couple of days later two big boxes a arrived at the house.

This collection of books was under the Classics and Classics for boys.

Arabian Nights by Anonymous
Call of the Wild and White Fang by Jack London
Four Feathers by A. E. W. Mason
Jungle Books by Rudyard Kipling
King Solomon's Mines by H. Rider Haggard
Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy
Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

Classics for boys:
Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne
Kim by Rudyard Kipling
Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Other Stories by Robert Louis Stevenson
The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper
The Time Machine by H. G. Wells
Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift

Thanks Victoria, let the reading commence.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

SEC Football - Florida wins the National Championship

Congratulations to the University of Florida! The Champions of the Southeastern Conference are now the BCS National Champion.

In Miami, Florida, the Gators took a bite out of the Oklahoma Sooners in the FedEx Bowl Championship Series Game. With a final score of 24 to 14 the Gators under the leadership of Tim "Superman" Tebow won on Thursday evening.

The Florida defense was able to rattle the Heisman Trophy winner and the high scoring Oklahoma Sooner offense. It appears that the Air and Ground game of the of the Gators were able to come out on top.

The defense, a trademark of the Southeastern Conference, was able to keep the Sooners out of the end zone on fourth and inches and with an interception just before the first half. In the second half #35, Ahmad Black, was able to intercept Sam Bradford when #9, Juaquin Ignacious didn't tuck in a catch ending the last serious Oklahoma drive of the game.

Urban Meyer, the Coach of the Gators won his second National Championship with Florida. This is the third National Championship for the University of Florida.

The defensive player of the game was Carlos Dunlop. The offensive player of the game was Tim Tebow with 231 yards passing, 108 yards rushing, and 2 touchdowns. Pictured above, Percy Harvin, was a key offensive threat in the game.
It does appear that the "fourth" best quarterback in the Big 12 was able to win the National Championship.