November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving everyone

I'll be leaving very early in the morning for Waco and then on to Houston area. SO I wanted to wish everyone a happy and safe Thanksgiving!

November 25, 2008

Huzzah! The Movie

A friend of mine gave me this tip about a documentary movie that is being filmed. I know several people in this clip. It's about the renaissance faires and festivals that have become so popular in the last 10 or more years. I love going and what everyone in the film talks about is true, I feel very welcomed into new 'faire families'. I can't wait for the film to come out, probably sometime next year. Here's the site: HUZZAH!

November 24, 2008

Andon's Deli and Bar, Baltimore, MD - 1989

At my desk at work I have a liquor license framed. People usually don't notice it when they come to talk to me, but sometimes they do and I get to tell them about a chapter from my life from the late 80's and early 90's.

I had been living in Baltimore for several years working in retail. I got a chance to go into business with a friend that had owned a liquor store with a small deli that wanted to open another business, a small deli in downtown Baltimore. A partnership was formed, a liquor license obtained, equipment bought, food suppliers booked, cooks and wait staff hired, menu planned; and Andon's Deli was open for business. (The name was pronounced like 'ann-don' a combination of our last names, Anderson and Donovan).

We were located at 307 North Charles Street (the main street in Baltimore) about a mile from the Inner Harbor. I'll post some pictures tomorrow.

It was fun to remember somethings about Andon's. I loved the construction phase, getting the store ready to open. We hired two cooks, twin sisters named Virginia and Marilyn (yes, they did get tired of me asking where Delaware was - I had the same weird sense of humor back then too). When it wasn't busy I was usually back in the kitchen with them, laughing or dancing.

I had to go through the liquor board of the city to get the license and I remember in the interview they thought it was funny that I had attended BYU and was now getting this liquor license. We had a fully stocked bar and the customers that came in after work loved me to bartend for then since I didn't drink and had no idea of portions of alchol.... I loved the customers and had our usual crowds and the street people that would come in while it wasn't busy just to chat. The ladies from the Catholic Charity that came every single day to have lunch, the college kids from the Kinko's across the street that came in after their midnight shift was over to have a beer at about 9 am. The office workers and the occasional celebrity, I don't know what I did with Dionne Warwick's autograph.

I have a copy of my menu and a few more pics in the photo album section if anyone wants to go look, I had my favorites on the menu, we made an awesome crab cake and shrimp salad, OMG!! We also had a daily special. After a year I bought out my partner and worked for myself. I didn't have a dishwasher, and we needed one since we served meals on real plates and had real silverwear for out customers that ate there. I guess I should've hired one... but sometime I was just in the way when it wasn't very busy. I had some college students for the waitstaff and we had fun. We catered a few parties, tried opening on the weekends, and tried to sell the idea to people to stop by on their way home from work to take dinner home. But it was mainly a 7 am to 6 pm business.

But being your own boss has its drawbacks, like no vacation time or pay... and no health plan. I was getting burned out so I put it on the market and sold the business a short time later. I do miss it at times... but its just fond memories now of what seemed a lifetime ago. But it was just another chapter in my life.

Man, now I'm craving some shrimp salad.

November 23, 2008

Mom and dad's anniversary

It was 53 years ago that my mom and dad got married, November 23, 1955. This is their wedding picture.

Here is their engagement picture:

They were married the day before Thanksgiving, so I always think of them during this time of year.

They had this thing about 2s and 3s. Dad was born in 1923 and mom in 1932, when they married dad was 32 and mom was 23 and they got married on the 23rd. The had 3 boys and 2 girls. While looking for these pictures to scan I found a poem that dad wrote for their 40th anniversary:

It was the day before Thanksgiving
many years ago, you see
when we began our daily living
just me and my wife, "my Dee"

Soon we had a child
a lovely girl was she,
our joy was esthetic and wild
for now we were three.

We decided the name to give her
was a combination of Dee and Merlynn.
Soon in church we blessed her
the name I gave was D'Lynn.

April 6, 1958 is special in a big way
for Dee gave birth to a baby boy,
on this very special Easter Sunday
and our cup now runneth over with joy.

We named him after our fathers
Ralph Theadore he received,
that he will remember his grandfathers
of this we will believe.

Another blessed event we had
our family was growing still,
another boy named after his dad
to be a Junior was surely God's will.

Very shortly another blessing came
and we were filled with joy,
but where to find another name
for this our third little boy.

And so to our family we looked
for a name we could give this lad,
James Irvin is the name we booked
some uncles, I'm sure, very glad.

Then tragedy came into our lives
as Dee gave birth to another babe.
she never breathed the breath of life,
now Deborah's little body lies in a grave.

Since Dee could never have another
adoption seemed the next best way
to get the little girl we wanted
and so we began to pray.

So a baby girl came to fill our heart
her birthday's the same as D'Lynn,
our twins eleven years apart
that is why we named her J'Lynn.

Thanksgiving Day 1995, it be,
our families are assembled the day to celebrate
Forty years of marriage to "My Dee"
My wife, my love, my eternal mate.

Both of them have passed away now. I miss them a lot. So this day I'm remembering you mom and dad. I love you!

November 22, 2008

Last weekend of cable TV

This weekend might be a Bravo channel marathon. On Monday I will turn off the cable and go to antenna TV only. I'm OK with this, I realize I'm watching way too much junk. I know I should turn the TV off and get back to reading more.

I took my last dose of antibiotic yesterday!! Yeah, now maybe I can get back to a normal sleep cycle and not be put to sleep as a side effect of some drug. I think this will go well with cancelling the cable. I know that I should sleep better if I start to wind down from my day and get into a sleep mode. And turning off the TV and computer about an hour before bedtime will help.

A few months ago I went to Chongo Botanica, the Monkey Pharmacy. The shop is a little mom-and-pop place that has been in Dallas for about 40 years. I talked to the guy working there a little and he said "Ask me anything, trust me, I've heard it all!" I asked what was a good seller... the store is kind of overwhelming with the amount of stuff in it! He was talking to me and I swear, it hit home. Everything I believe in. How life isn't going to be fixed in by casting a spell or using a potion spray (they do have these in the store by the way...) or even by taking a pill, taking a drink... going shopping, whatever it is that we think will take care of us. Its all in our frame of mind, we have to take care of ourselves. He said that people want something to get them more money, he tells them; "have you thought about going back to school? Getting a degree, getting more training and getting a better paying job?" He said most people respond by saying "No, I want to light a candle.. or..."

I asked him what he had to help me sleep. Since moving to my new place I haven't been sleeping as well as I was. He responded by telling me what I've heard before by a very good therapist. Relax, wind down, do some type of ritual to help my body and mind relax. Maybe scented oils or a bath with some aroma therapy scents will help! This is exactly what I needed to hear. Hmmmm, maybe this guy was a mystic!!! Maybe he could read my mind and knew exactly what I needed to hear. I totally believe in this stuff!!!!

November 20, 2008

Being sick gives you limits

Since I'm now taking my second dose of antibiotic I haven't had a drink in 2 weeks, I kinda feel like this:

All of my friends are allowed to have a drink for me, while I can't. And here's a song to get you into the mood:

The BEER song:
Dough, the stuff I buy beer with
Ray, the guy I buy it from
Me, the one I buy beer for
Far, the distance to the bar
So, I think I'll have a beer
La, la la la la la lahhh
Tea, no thanks I'll have a beer
Which brings us back to Dough, Dough, Dough

I also haven't been to the gym in over 2 weeks now. I'm feeling sluggish and fat!
See, another reason I don't like to be sick!!! But, I have to be patient and let my body heal.

Did I mention that I'm an impatient patient? lol

November 19, 2008

It's International "Have a Bad Day" Day

So I thought I needed something silly to laugh at:
See more funny videos at Funny or Die

November 18, 2008

I went back to the doctor yesterday afternoon and was told I still have bronchitis. The doc gave me a stronger antibiotic. What a difference the right drug makes! I'm finally feeling better and back to work. Nothing memorable happened. Well, maybe...

While eating lunch I got a call from a woman who told me she was my cousin Ruth Ann. I barely remember her and if we passed on the street we would not recognize each other. The last time I even saw her was well over 25 years ago.

Several years ago my dad's family made an address book and she found my name and saw that I live in Dallas. She told me she has lived in a suburb of Dallas for over 4 years. She invited me to Thanksgiving dinner but I declined since I already have plans, but we talked about getting together sometime to catch up. I will meet with her sometime, but I have to remember to not judge... I'm guess I'm only going on experience; someone in my Mormon family hears about me, who is no longer active, and "feels inspired" to go find me to see if they can bring me "back to the fold". I am a little weary, but I will try hard to not make that assumption. Well, I'll call them back later and see where it goes.

November 17, 2008

Being sick

Last Monday I went to the doctor to find out I had bronchitis. I was very sick, had trouble breathing and very congested. Now, a week later, my chest is feeling better but I'm still a little congested. I really have tried to take it easy and rest more to get over this sooner, but I am an impatient patient. I don't like being sick. UGH!

Today is a vacation day and I'm staying home. Not my original plan.... I wanted to go back to the Texas Renaissance Festival (TRF) for another weekend and because a friend was going to be there with a group called The Drunk Monks. It would've been a great weekend. It was also the Scottish Highland themed weekend and I was going to wear my kilt.

But when I hear the cold front that came through Dallas also went down to TRF I decided not to go. It was only 58 degrees on Saturday and the low 60s yesterday! That's a little to chilly to be walking around in a kilt!! I also couldn't have worn my new sandals that lace up my calves. Oh well, maybe I'll go to TRF for the closing weekend the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving. I can wear the leather jacket and long pants!

I just need to get WELL!!

November 16, 2008

First Blog

I've kept a blog on myspace for over six months now and really enjoy it. I realize that a lot of friends don't have a myspace account or go on that site. Before I created an account there myspace seemed like a teenager thing... not for a 47 year old guy like me. But due to the prompting of my nieces and nephew I finally created an account. Here is the link to my page if anyone is interested:

Well, I like doing a blog, it's an online journal of sorts. A way to write about what happens to me. I wish I could go someplace and read about my parents or other family members to see what their lives were like or what they were feeling. If they kept a journal or diary you have to have the physical book or you would never read it. So I like the idea and concept of this online journal.

I have gone back and read entries from my missionary journal and I'm not going to do the same thing here. It seemed like I was giving a play-by-play or travel log of my day. With this blog I hope to just write about the stuff from my life, what I'm feeling, thinking about, what's in the news or media now, some times just silly stuff that makes me laugh. That's why I'm calling this blog "Jim's Stuff" it's just stories and things from my life.

I welcome any comments.
Keep reading....