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Updated: 01/04/02

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The Two Towers
by JRR Tolkien

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Friday, 4 January, 2002

Happy Birthday to John, Jennifer's husband. The Big Four-Oh today.

Woke up at 2:00 a.m. Flipped channels - an old Saturday Night Live, Ming Tsai on Food Channel, more Abtronics - finally settled on a rerun of the Mary Tyler Moore Show. Guess what it was called: Mary's Insomnia.


I dunno, maybe it was enough to hear Lou Grant singing "Toura, Loura, Loura" on the tube, but I did fall asleep right after . . . at 4:30. *sheesh*.

I went out to eat last night since I didn't have any food at home and didn't feel like cooking anyway. I went to McCormick & Schmick's, sat at the bar and had a salad and popcorn rock shrimp. Pretty tasty. I read my book - plowed through 150 pages of The Two Towers - and then went home. I had not one, but TWO boxes waiting for me: the one that Goldilocks The Mummer delivered and a box from Mom and Dad.

That Santa-Mom, I tell ya. A stack of paperback books that she's finished, plus a whole bunch of Christmas presents that she didn't send before! And here I was, complaining that just when I was finally ready for the holidays, Elvis had left the building. I put on Der Bingle's "Whiiiite Chriiss-Maaas", called Mom and opened more presents! A great new mug, tea, bath salts, slippers, and two Steve Martin movies: "My Blue Heaven" and "The Man With Two Brains." Oh, and the mandatory chocolate coins and socks that hadn't appeared in the stocking.

On the topic of when the balcony lights should come down, she suggested that I could wait until Ephiphany which is January 6th, so it looks like Sunday is the day.

I left the Mummer box at the front desk until this weekend because it's really heavy and I didn't feel like getting a cart and bringing it back last night. Speaking of carts . . . yes indeed, there was one hiding in the same darn alcove in the hallway again. And once again, I trotted the little truant back to the elevator, although I wasn't quite as Boy Scouty about my good deed this time.


Do you know that Enterprise Rental Car has weekend rentals for $9.99 a day? Outstanding. I mean, really, folks - that's like a cab ride. OK, so it's not a sports car or a fancy SUV - it's a Dodge Neon - but what the heck.

So here's the warning for all of you in the Delaware Valley - you better watch yourselves because I will be mobile! Time to shop! I will go over to pick it up after work and drop it off Monday morning on my way in, barring the

that the forecasters are predicting for Sunday and Monday.

[Uh huh.]

OK, I probably shouldn't be quite so cavalier about it, because even the Weather Channel is showing a chance of snow, but the Philadelphia Weather Charlatans are the worst alarmists I have ever seen. Classic Chicken Little syndrome. Any time any of the computer models even HINT that we might get a little dusting, they immediately freak out and start creating end-of-the-world promo graphics to use in the broadcasts:


I believe that the reason that they do this is far more sinister than one would suspect. I think that they have bought FUTURES of milk, eggs and bread and that they know that if we aren't threatened with snow we will not have the panicked buying of the aforementioned items and they will lose money. "These people aren't making enough French Toast - we MUST invent a storm!"

OK, they're probably just weather-talent and they've been told to sell the story because people will tune in to watch Action-Doppler-Live-Accu Radar images of storm systems that are multiple states away. I always feel sorry for the poor "Live From The Edge Of The Storm" dudes that have to stand out there in their parkas with a ruler waiting for the imaginary snow so they can measure it. Obviously they drew a short straw somewhere along the line.

My prediction is that they will stew about this storm for the next two days and come Sunday we will have some flurries. Changing over to rain.

Yeah, I know - ya'll will be laughing up your sleeves at me on Monday when I rant about the three feet of snow we had dumped on us. I better go to the grocery store and buy some milk, eggs and bread.

~ ~ ~

Quote du jour:

"Insomnia is nothing to
lose sleep over."

-- Murray Slaughter
The Mary Tyler Moore Show

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