Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Fear This!

One thing you guys who have decided to join me on the tour de force of what are the inane, trivial, professional and sometimes personal moments of my life should be aware of is that there will be times when I digress into a nostalgic state of remembrance in regards to my dad. Most of you know he died back in Feb. '06. And what happens is that on any given day anything, and I mean anything, can trigger a memory about him. When that happens, if it has a nice story to go along with it or a humorous anecdote, I'll share that with you. You will also notice, that while I will be telling you stories about my dad, you will realize that I am also telling you stories about my best friend, because in the last five or so years of his life, that's what he became.

Well, today I have story #1. I was in Lexington to take a test so that I could get my Food Handlers Permit. Yes, I am now certified by the Lexington Board of Health to handle food that will be consumed by perfect strangers (a wonderful story on this will be forthcoming in the next day or so). Anyway, I decided to stop by the Joe Craft Center at the University of Kentucky to visit my bestest buddy Donna. Donna and I go way back to 1992 when I was a student worker at the UK payroll department. Anyway, I hadn't seen Donna in a while, so I decided to go by there and see how see was doing.

This was the first time I had ever been in the Joe Craft Center, and let me say I was enpressed. At least with the lobby and such. I didn't get a tour of the practice areas or the like (Donna, you need to give me that tour soon!), but it reminded of a time when my dad, a number of years ago, probably around '97 or '98 my dad came to Lexington to visit me.

We went down, as I did today, to visit Donna and chat a little bit. This was back in the days when most of the offices for Athletics were in the dreary subterranean hallways of Memorial Coliseum. My dad loved Kentucky. He would buy just about any type of anything that said Kentucky on it. When I worked in UK Athletics, I often gave T-shirts I was given to him. He loved it, and he often told me to tell Donna to get him something, anything. So, that day, he was wearing a UK sweatshirt and cap and ready to go.

Since it was my dad's first time in Memorial Coliseum, he was eager to take a look around, so Donna gave him the tour. As we rounded the corner beside Bill Keightley's former office/equipment room, we spotted Jamaal Magloire. I happened to have a camera with me and Jamaal was nice enough to let us snap a shot of him. Then as we made our way down the hall and glanced in the training room, we saw Scott Padget, Nazr Mohammad, and Cameron Mills. Well, dad wanted his photo taken with them, and they, too, were more than happy to oblige. When it comes down to it, those guys simply made my dad's day. And if I could, I'd love to personally thank them for that.

Dad and Mills

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Dad and Padgett

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Dad and Nazr

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You might notice that there is something on my dad's forehead. He had purchased some UK temporary tattoos that day. He also got one, which he jokingly put on his forehead. It said, "Fear This".

Please don't ask me to explain it. Just know my dad was fun that way.

Dammit, I miss him...

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Pure Grace

Okay, so Alfred Hitchcock's "Rear Window" was on TV today, and it reminded me of something I'd like to share.

This movie co-starred Grace Kelly. Of course, before seeing this movie I had heard of her, she was a princess for goodness' sake. But I had never seen her in a movie. Then I saw "Rear Window" back in February or so. Many critics have claimed that her entrance in this movie, the moment when the audience first sees her, is one of the best character entrances in movie history. From all the movies I've seen in my life, I have to agree.

Grace Kelly was so beautiful and a wonderful actress. It's a shame she had to give up acting when she married the Prince of Monaco.

Anyway, here is the entrance she makes in "Rear Window."

What do you think?

At the Movies

In all the years I've been working, I had always vowed that I would never work in food service. It wasn't so much that I thought I was above that type of job, I mean I cleaned out the below-groundlevel trenches at a faucet chroming plant for a couple weeks one summer, but I think it was always that I didn't want to deal with food or the customers.

Well, at the ripe old age of 36, I have found my way into a job that is now allowing me this pleasure. Granted, I don't have to fry burgers or anything like that, but working at a movie theatre has afforded me the opportunity to serve up food to hungry patrons on their way into the hottest new movies. It's rather easy actually. Scoop up some popcorn here, fill a cup with Coca Cola there, maybe even sell a big pickle (yes, people actually do buy and eat the pickles).

But the thing I am hating about this new adventure is the customers. It's like what Randal said in "Clerks," the job would be a lot better if it weren't for the customers.

I can count on at least once during every shift behind the concession counter a customer making some kind of rude or hateful comment about the prices of the concessions. Yes, they are over-priced, but that is how the theatre makes its money. But what these customers don't understand is that I am not coming in and setting the prices myself. I don't get a cut of it, and frankly, they don't have to buy any of the items we offer. One night, very seriously, a man told me after buying sodas and candy for about 5 kids, that we were robbing him. I just smiled and told him to enjoy his movie. It's what you have to do to get by -- smile and let it roll off your back.

That, plus the fact that we are supposed to try to upsell (convince the customer to buy a bigger size if available), reminded me of a scene from the movie "Ghost World." In the following clip, go to the point with 6:44 left and watch as Enid goes through what I go through.

The movie theatre concession business is very much like that.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


I would like to welcome everyone to my new weblog. This is a place for friends and family to keep up with what I am doing, how things are going and also get my latest thoughts on anything and maybe everything.

I am sure that not everyone cares about those things, but I hope that some of you do. My problem often is not e-mailing everyone I should as often as I should. I really do love to keep in touch with my friends and family, but just can't always find the time. I have a few friends on Myspace and Facebook, but not everyone I want to communicate with have profiles on those sites. So, I thought it would be beneficial to set up this site as a catch all for everyone.

I am going to try to post here every couple days or so as my schedule permits. If you read something that you would like to comment about, please do. If you want to respond in private, please by all means shoot me an e-mail (if you learned of this weblog, then you know my e-mail address).

For now, I am doing well, and I hope everyone else is, too.