Monday, December 29, 2008

The Boston Globe's Year in Pictures... always worth a look. Moving, wrenching, funny and poignant, the pictures are often worth more than a thousand words.




This one really caught me this year:

Sunday, December 28, 2008


So, I am reading the New York Times today when I came across an article that borrowed from one of my signature lines. Op ed columnist Bob Herbert wrote THIS ARTICLE about the state of things in America and the obvious solution: Stop Being Stupid.

It's been more than a catchphrase of mine, more like a mantra when it's time to make a decision. For more than 10 years, I have uttered a simple directive: Don't be Stupid. It rolls off the tongue more easily than "So is your FACE!" from a grade-schooler in a schoolyard war of words. Granted, it's not the exact same thing, but I'll leave the hair-splitting to you, my readers, to determine if the New York Times owes me an apology and a check. And, given the TRACK RECORD of the Times on issues of plagiarism, I am going to start checking the mailbox.

Additionally, in a Fish-as-Zeitgeist moment, Clint Eastwood uses another of my great catchphrases in his new movie Gran Torino. In the action-packed trailer on television today, one of our greatest living actors says to the bad guys, as only Clint can: "Get Off My Lawn!" Sure, I didn't invent it, but for the past three years, I am thinking I'm one oof the few people out there using it...until now. Welcome too the party, Johnny-Clint-Lately. I'll be looking for that thank you note and royalty check from you when the movie debuts.

Mrs. Fish... playing with her favorite Christmas present: Guitar Hero--World Tour. She is a rock queen of the highest order. Right now she is jamming to Say Yeah by the Hushpuppies, then into CCR's Up Around the Bend. Encore: No Sleep 'til Brooklyn--The Beastie Boys!!!!!!

She is teh roxxor, to be sure.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Had a fantastic Christmas. I spent it at home with my family but missed my larger family who went to my brother's house for the holiday. With the dog, the options were pretty much have him in the crate howling or running around the house having accidents, so we went with Option C: Stay home and celebrate with just our little brood. It was a good time. Still, it wuld have been nice to see the rest of the family.

Little Fish's favorite gift was, obviously, her puppy. He has been a peach. He's a bundle of energy one minute, then a total PHLUMPH the next. Just like a perfect puppy should be. I continue to be amazed by how well and how quickly he has fit in with us, and how amazingly well Little Fish has cared for him. She has been getting up early in the morning to let him out, doesn't complain about the poopage factor, and has pretty much been with him since he came through our door.

Mrs. Fish got a jewelry armoire and a couple of oooo-la-la tops that look great on her. For once, assembly of a piece of furniture went smoothly, thanks to directions in English and a good amount of time allocated to putting it together.

My favorite gift was a Garmin 305 heartrate monitor/GPS/everything-but-the-kitchen-sink. It basically tracks your workouts and maps where you went--nice when I get a greenlight to get started again, in about a month and a half. For now, I have started lifting weights again.

The best part of Christmas was watching my daughter sing at church. It was her last year with the kid's pageant, and she had a solo again. She has grown so much, and her voice has begun to mature. She is singing from her lungs and diaphragm, rather than her nose and her voice is beautiful, like her Mama's....and very much unlike her father's. Thank God.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Times Are Tough

...all over, apparently.

Humpty Dumpty's Painting....

Last night I was laying in bed with Mrs. Fish and the dog started to growl and bark. It wasn't sustained or anything, just a periodic, intermittent affair. It was weird, but I thought the cats were probably visiting him in his cage, which always makes him bark. They have a habit of stopping by to say hello, shaking their tails at him from a safe distance and then, when he barks, tearing out of the room just in case he is after them.

So anyway, this went on for about 10 minutes and I decided that was enough. I went in to move the cats out and/or tell him to lie down. Only, there were no cats. Weird. So I told him to lie down, which he did. Five minutes later, I'm lying back down in my bed when I hear a TREMENDOUS CRASH!!!!!!! Murphy's cage is rattling and it sounds like he is in an all out war with something.

I go tearing out of the room to discover that a painting we had hung outside of Little Fish's room, a 4' x 5' framed and glassed piece, had broken loose and fallen to the floor. I really think Murphy was making all that noise because he heard or sensed it giving way (the anchor that attaches the wire to the frame broke). Smart puppy, and I'm glad he was there to "protect" us, especially Little Fish.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Just a Day

Got up this morning around 6.15 and hit the ground running. Grabbed a cup of coffee and a shower and got dressed. It's casual Friday and while that's cause for celebration for about 90% of America, it actually causes me a modicum of anxiety.

It's sloppy outside, a mixture of rain and sleet and freezing gush, so jeans would seem de rigueur. But what if a client should need to see me? Then a jacket and tie would seem appropriate, at the very least. I've solved this one by keeping a pressed and starched shirt with a jacket and tie at the office. Still, a higher standard generally applies to the sales guy, so I opted for a pair of upscale cotton cargo pants and a ribbed turtleneck, finishing it off with a pair of cool Skechers...nice outfit, all-in-all. Still, a wardrobe update is coming soon, I suspect, with a lot of my business clothes getting a little worn around the edges and my casual wardrobe pretty much nonexistant.

I dashed out the door where I spent the better part of the morning on the phone, trying in vain to reach a handful of people who are too busy to answer their phones or return their calls. Sigh. At least no one was rude or hung up on

Lunch was an improvement; the people in the office took me out to lunch and we went to the Peachtree Diner where I ordered breakfast for lunch. Absolutely awesome. Steak and eggs with homefries and toast...and a big old pancake on top. NOICE!

After that, I went to Little Fish's Holiday Concert at school. I got a little choked up seeing my daughter up there singing away. She makes me so proud, and I am blessed to have a good kid like her. She sings beautifully (so glad she got Mrs. Fish's voice and not mine). She is also singing in the church pageant for Christmas Eve this year, and has received a solo once again.

I went back to work, finished out some calls and paperwork, then took off for vacation. I'm out until the 26th and am really looking forward to having some time off. My brain is a littled cooked, quite frankly.

I finished out the day by going out to an overpriced dinner at Ruby Tuesday's and coming home to open a Christmas present. Mrs. Fish gave me a BEAUTIFUL photo of Little Fish that I have loved forever. It was taken at a friend's wedding, but I thought it was gone forever. Mrs. Fish found it, blew it up, had an expert doctor it up a bit and swatch it in Sepia tones. I LOVE IT!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

We got a shot of an icy mess on my birthday, but apparently we're in for a blast tonight and into tomorrow. I, for one, wouldn't mind a work-from-home day, and Little Fish has already laid out her pajamas for lounging around the house tomorrow. Needless to say, Murphy is perplexed but amused by all the white stuff.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me!

It was just a quiet night at home with Mrs. Fish and Little Fish. I had a great time--nice and relaxing. Mrs. Fish made pasta and chocolate orange cake...mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

I got a cool orange sweater and Little Fish made the most amazing PowerPoint ever. Life is pretty amazing somedays, and yesterday was one of them.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Getting Ready for the Holidays

This weekend I've spent a lot of my time busting my hump to get ready for the holidays. Cleaning the house, battening down the hatches on the deck, putting up lights out front, shopping with Little Fish to get the right gift for the new puppy, and all that jazz. It feels really good to be getting this much done.

Some years are harder because of seasonal affective stuff, and the shorter days bring me down. That being said, this year has been really good. I'm not exactly sure what the difference is, but I'm glad I feel as good as I do.

The smell of the Christmas tree behind me is filling up the house. Little Fish made cookies today, too, which adds to the wonderful smells of the holidays. I love it.

Ankle Rx

The official diagnosis is a torn ligament. Not sprained. Torn. It could have been a lot worse, according to the doc. The bottom line is another two months of no running, then start testing it a bit. If it's okay, great. If it's not, or if I continue to have recurring injuries, I'll probably be looking at surgery. On the plus side, I am allowed to ride my bike, so it's time to warm up the drainer.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Murphy's First Snow Storm...

Perhaps not a storm, but when you're as small as he is, it seems like a SQUALL!

In his Penn State gear:


It's Murphy's first day home! Here he is, with Little Fish.

They've been pretty much inseparable since Murphy got home...

Friday, December 05, 2008

The Fish Family Dog Comes Home Tonight

Little Fish, as you can imagine, is absolutely over-the-moon ecstatic. Meet Murphy:

Thursday, December 04, 2008

The Fish Family Dog....

...will not look like this.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

It Seems....

...the Fish Family is getting a dog.