Saturday, April 30, 2011

Annabelle Le(hane)

In honor of my babies first birthday I present here the poem in which she was partially named after.

Annabelle Lee


It was many and many a year ago,
In a kingdom by the sea,
That a maiden there lived whom you may know
By the name of Annabelle Lee;
And this maiden she lived with no other thought
Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child,
In this kingdom by the sea;
But we loved with a love that was more than love-
I and my Annabel Lee;
With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven
Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,
In this kingdom by the sea,
A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling
My beautiful Annabelle Lee;
So that her highborn kinsman came
And bore her away from me,
To shut her up in a sepulchre
In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in heaven,
Went envying her and me-
Yes!- that was the reason (as all men know,
In this kingdom by the sea)
That the wind came out of the cloud by night,
Chilling and killing my Annabelle Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love
Of those who were older than we-
Of many far wiser than we-
And neither the angels in heaven above,
Nor the demons down under the sea,
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
Of the beautiful Annabelle Lee.

For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams
Of the beautiful Annabelle Lee;
And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes
Of the beautiful Annabelle Lee;
And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side
Of my darling- my darling- my life and my bride,
In the sepulchre there by the sea,
In her tomb by the sounding sea.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Bits of Wisdom - Humor

Love is grand;
divorce is a hundred grand.

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I am in shape.
Round is a shape.

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Time may be a great healer, but it's a lousy beautician.

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Never be afraid to try something new.
Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

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Conscience is what hurts when everything else feels so good.

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Talk is cheap because supply exceeds demand.

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Even if you are on the right track,
you'll get run over if you just sit there.

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Politicians and diapers have one thing in common. They should both be changed regularly and for the same reason.

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An optimist thinks that this is the best possible world.
A pessimist fears that this is true.

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There will always be death and taxes; however, death doesn't get worse every year.

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In just two days, tomorrow will be yesterday.

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Dijon vu --
the same mustard as before.

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I am a nutritional overachiever.

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I am having an out of money experience.

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I plan on living forever. So far, so good.

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Practice safe eating --
always use condiments.

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A day without sunshine is like night.

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If marriage were outlawed, only outlaws would have in-laws.

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It's frustrating when you know all the answers,
but nobody bothers to ask you the questions.

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The real art of conversation is not only to
say the right thing at the right time,
but also to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.

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Brain cells come and brain cells go, but fat cells live forever.

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Age doesn't always bring wisdom.
Sometimes age comes alone.

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Life not only begins at forty,
it also begins to show.

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You don't stop laughing because you grow old, you grow old because you stopped laughing.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy Dyngus Day!!

All of this info and more can be found at http://www.dyngusdaybuffalo.com/

WHAT IS DYNGUS DAY?
Historically a Polish-American tradition, Dyngus Day celebrates the end of the often restrictive observance of lent and the joy of Easter. Over the decades, Dyngus Day has become a wonderful holiday to celebrate Polish-American culture, heritage and traditions.

HOW DID IT START?
There are many stories that attempt to explain the origins of the day. Many Polish customs date back to pre-Christian practices of our Slavic ancestors. The custom of pouring water is an ancient spring rite of cleansing, purification, and fertility. The same is true of the complimentary practice of switching with pussy willow branches. Since 966 A.D., Dyngus Day has been associated with the baptism of Prince Mieszko I. Tradition states that Prince Mieszko I along with his court were baptized on Easter Monday. Thus, Dyngus Day and its rites of sprinkling with water have become a folk celebration in thanksgiving for the fact that the first king of Poland was baptized into Christianity, bringing Catholicism to Poland. In more modern times, the tradition continued when farm boys in Poland wanted to attract notice from the girls of their choice. It was custom to throw water and hit the girls on their legs with twigs or pussywillows. Cologne was used instead of water by the more gallant lads. The ladies would reciprocate by throwing dishes & crockery and Tuesday was their day of revenge, imitating the same tactics.

WHAT DOES THE WORD DYNGUS MEAN?
According to the Encyclopedia Staropolska written in the 19th century by A. Gloger, the word can be traced back to a medieval form of the word “Dingnus,” which means “worthy, proper, or suitable.” Gloger cites a used of the word, namely “ranson during a war to protect against pillage,” as well as a German usage of “Dingen,” which means “to come to an agreement, evaluate or buy back.”

MODERN DYNGUS DAY IN BUFFALO
Although Dyngus Day was always celebrated in traditional Polish neighborhoods dated back to the 1870s, modern Dyngus Day in Buffalo had its start with the Chopin Singing Society in 1961. Judge Ann T. Mikoll and her late husband Theodore V. Mikoll held the first party at the Society's clubrooms on Kosciuszko Street on Buffalo's Eastside. The success of the Chopins' Dyngus Parties during the 1960s led to other Dyngus dances on the Eastside including those at the Broadway Grill, the Warsaw Inn, the Polish Singing Circle and at the New York Central Terminal. Chopins left the Eastside in the 1980s and moved out to new clubrooms in Cheektowaga where the festival attracted a new generation. The Chopins tradition continues with party's taking place at the Heathstone Mannor in Depew.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

The Guy's Rules - Humor

The Guys' Rules


Finally, the guys' side of the story.
(I must admit, it's pretty good.)
We always hear "the rules" from the female side.
Now here are the rules from the male side.
These are our rules!
Please note... these are all numbered "1" ON PURPOSE!

1. Learn to work the toilet seat. You're a big girl. If it's up, put it down. We need it up, you need it down. You don't hear us complaining about you leaving it down.

1. Sunday sports. It's like the full moon or the changing of the tides. Let it be.

1. Shopping is NOT a sport. And no, we are never going to think of it that way.

1. Crying is blackmail.

1. Ask for what you want. Let us be clear on this one: Subtle hints do not work! Strong hints do not work! Obvious hints do not work! Just say it!

1. Yes and No are perfectly acceptable answers to almost every question.

1. Come to us with a problem only if you want help solving it. That's what we do. Sympathy is what your girlfriends are for.

1. Anything we said 6 months ago is inadmissible in an argument. In fact, all comments become null and void after 7 days.

1. If you think you're fat, you probably are. Don't ask us.

1. If something we said can be interpreted two ways and one of the ways makes you sad or angry, we meant the other one.

1. You can either ask us to do something or tell us how you want it done. Not both. If you already know best how to do it, just do it yourself.

1. Whenever possible, please say whatever you have to say during commercials.

1. Christopher Columbus did not need directions and neither do we

1. ALL men see in only 16 colors, like Windows default settings. Peach, for example, is a fruit, not a color. Pumpkin is also a fruit. We have no idea what mauve is.

1. If it itches, it will be scratched. We do that.

1. If we ask what is wrong and you say "nothing," we will act like nothing's wrong. We know you are lying, but it is just not worth the hassle.

1. If you ask a question you don't want an answer to, expect an answer you don't want to hear.

1. When we have to go somewhere, absolutely anything you wear is fine..Really.

1. Don't ask us what we're thinking about unless you are prepared to discuss such topics as baseball, the shotgun formation, or monster trucks.

1. You have enough clothes.
1. You have too many shoes.

1. I am in shape. Round is a shape.
1. Thank you for reading this.

Yes, I know, I have to sleep on the couch tonight; but did you know men really don't mind that? It's like camping.
At last a guy has taken the time to write this all down

Thursday, April 7, 2011

2011 Personal Goals - March Update

Three months in and starting to regain control:

1. Finish first draft of my novel -
January 1st - 1st third is done. The plan this year is to write it and read it to Annabelle and edit it as I go.
February 1st - Nothing new done
March 1st - Nothing new
April 1st - Nothing new

2. Drop weight to 167
January 1st - 176.4. Starting off worse this year than last but I should have some more time to work out.
February 1st - 174.6
March 1st - 177.6 Damn stress
April 1st - 176.0

3. Balance our budget
January 1st - Things are looking up for this year with Veronica getting a new job (hopefully) after residency is complete.
February 1st - Working on it but large expenses due to medical stuff not helping.
March 1st - Getting worse but tax refund should put us back to where we were at the beginning of the year.
April 1st - Tax refund helped up get slowly back on track

4a. (DONE!) Read a total of 100 of the greatest books on my lists by my 30th birthday
January 1st - Current count 97. Only 3 to read by March 19th. This was the initial goal last year but I hoped to have them done earlier.
February 1st - Currently reading Lolita.
March 1st - Finished Lolita and The Colour of Magic. Only 1 to go before March 19th
April 1st - Finished The Colour of Magic. This task is completed!!!

4b. Read 2 of the Top Ten books on Zanes book list
January 1st - I currently have 6 read. I figured I should be able to finish 2 of the 4 since 2 of them are very very long.
February 1st - The book I'm currently reading, Lolita, is on the list.
March 1st - Finished Lolita. One to go.
April 1st - Still one to go.

5a. Finish 2 more movies on my Geological Movie Review
January 1st - Look to start 2 new movies again
February 1st - Nothing new.
March 1st - Nothing new.
April 1st - Nothing new

5b. Update the 1 Geologic Movie Review that was previously done and not updated
January 1st - 2 out of 3 up to par
February 1st - Nothing new
March 1st - Nothing new
April 1st - Nothing new

6. Watch all of the 100 Greatest Movies of All Time (according to AFI)
January 1st - Current count 69. 31 left to go.
February 1st - Nothing new
March 1st - Nothing new
April 1st - Nothing new

7. Finish bottom of hovercraft.
January 1st - I just need to finish epoxying and smoothing out the bottom then paint it. Not too much work but time is an issue.
February 1st - Haven't had time to work on it
March 1st - Nothing new
April 1st - Nothing new

8. Do 1 Geological Fact for each month.
January 1st - That is a total of 12 for the year. Hopefully I can get them set up ahead of time.
February 1st - 1 done for January, 11 to go.
March 1st - 1 done for February, 10 to go.
April 1st - 1 done for March, 9 to go.

Other items of interest:
Busy busy. I finished up my PhD exam and I passed (ish) after a grueling ~18 hour exam. I still have a couple of thigs to write up but overall I am finished. We also took a trip down to Arizona and visited the Grand Canyon as well as some other National Parks in the area for Spring Break. School is slowly coming to a conclusion for the semester and I am slowly gaining control over all the things that seemed to have gone out of whack. April should be good.