It's the end of the world as we know it...

Politics, philosophy, the law, current events, left leaning debates, religion, baseball, football, pop culture, growing up Greek, random events in my life...whatever hits my mind at the time.


One of my friends is having a scavenger hunt sleepover party on Friday at his house. The ironic thing is, the girls are thinking just as much about what to wear to the party as they would a black tie event. And let's face it, IF girls wear pajamas, there are two different kinds: ratty college ones, and not-fit-for-public-viewing type.

In soccer, we played the immature high school team again. The Bitch was still there. She was called for a penalty during the game. At the end of the game, she was STILL complaining about the play. Let it go. We really don't like that team. There were a few yellow cards, and the ref even threatened to card us for 4 minutes (that's not technically even anything!) because of comments from the bench. We ended up winning the game, but it was touch and go for a bit. Ahh, the satisfaction I took from beating them... (Yeah, who's the immature one??)

I went to hear Sam Fulwood speak the other night. He's an extremely talented storyteller. I highly recommend that if anyone has the opportunty to hear him sometime, they take that opportunity.

Heading rock climbing tomrrow. It's been two weeks since I've been, and my knees are both still a little tender, so we'll see how it goes. Last time I went, I was pleased with my progress so I hope my time away hasn't hurt me too much.

So the Cleveland Indians signed Grady Sizemore today. He joins me favorite, Jhonny Peralta, witha long term contract. (Is Cliff Lee coming next?) And speaking of the Colon trade (Ok, I wasn't but I mentioned Sizemore and Lee...) the Indians apparently traded Brandon Phillips. I am both surprised and not surprised. He is a great fielder, but he wasn't able to hit with the power they suspected (remember, he once was the primary prize in the Bartolo trade - and now the two other pieces, Grady and Cliff have long term contracts). I think that it's his attitude more than anything else. I think he'll go elsewhere and be the player that they thought he'd be getting when they traded for him. I met Brandon once. We actually talked for a couple of hours. He's adorable, but he did have an ego. I think this might be the best thing that can happen to his career. Remember, this kid is 24. After not hitting at the major league level in 2003, then hitting even worse after he was sent down, he killed the ball in 2004 at AAA. In my opinion, when the Indians resigned Belliard after 2004, it soured him and affected him in 2005. Still, he had a pretty good spring training. I think that he goes elsewhere, starts anew. At 24, this kid is still going to be good. Alas, not here in Cleveland...

Meanwhile, Danny Graves made the major leage roster (over Jason Davis, who I actually like -- though I was quite impressed with Graves this spring, who I believe had an implosion against the Indians in June or so -- and Karsay, who didn't appear quite ready yet and still recovering) and Kelly Shoppach beat out Diaz for back up catcher. (Defensively, he's much better.) Obviously, Vazquez beat out Brandon Phillips for the utility position.

And that's my Indians update...


Current criticisms emailed to me about my blog:

--Cartscalator. The "s" is essential.

--FYI, when you type in "cleveland soccer alcohol" in the google blog search, your blog is the first one that comes up.

--[Your blog] is ceasing to entertain me as it is no longer scandalous

So, I edited
cartscalator so it was spelled properly (who even knew that it had a proper spelling??)

As for the second, thanks for letting me know, but that is not something I plan to brag to my grandparents about. Or put on my resume for that matter. It's actually kinda frightening. I mean, don't people in Cleveland drink after playing soccer? I assure you, I'm not drinking alone. As much as I may or may not drink, I do not drink alone...

Finally, for the third, it's hard being "scandalous" (and I object, I was never scandalous!) when your friends, co-workers, and family all know about your blog. Things aren't always appropriate for their ears/eyes, you know?? But I shall tell a story anyway...

Evidently, things that you think are secret rarely are. For example, I went out with a guy a few weeks ago. I hadn't mentioned it to any of my friends, so I assumed they did not know. Seems like a perfectly reasonable assumption to me.

All is well, until last Tuesday (over a week after said date), I get a text from said guy commenting that two of my friends were asking him about us going out. (Dude, THAT is what I was texting about when I was at your house, ok?) I never mentioned that we went out to them, so I'm not even sure how they knew.

Then last Thursday I get an email from another mutual friend asking me about "Good Will Hunting." After I expressed confusion, my friend told me he was referring to my "man of the moment." I have a man of the moment? Who knew? He explained he was referring to the guy that I went out with - ONCE - and hadn't mentioned to anyone. Seriously, we went out once, I hadn't told anyone, and yet I'm getting an email about it??

Finally, Saturday (two weeks after said date), yet another mutual friend asked me, point blank, whether I was going out with said person. Seemingly out of nowhere. Literally, it was, "So I've heard this rumor, and I figured I'd go right to source, so are you and he dating?" He said he heard it, then observed us interacting so assumed it was true but wanted to know for sure. Want to know the best part? He heard that we were dating *before* we actually went out.

As for Saturday, my football team won, as I mentioned, and I got hurt.

Saturday, I went to the bar after my football game that afteroon. I left the bars close to 2 am. I n case you were wondering, around 8 pm, the bars change from the football, muddy sweats and t-shirts crowd, to the all ho'ed up and ready to party crowd. I stuck out like a sore thumb. You know me, it's not like I minded, but it was still odd how fast that transition occurs. At 6 pm, we are mocking the people in the bar who clearly didn't play football that afternoon, two hours later, the mocker becomes the mockee...

Oh, I still have that tree that most people put up the beginning of December and take down the beginning of January up. Right now it's covered in plastic eggs of all colors (it really looks nice, I should take aphoto with my new digital camera.) Anyway, what astonishes me is the two cats who reside with me and can ignore the Christmas ornaments the entire time, but when they are plastic colored eggs, are leaping in the tree to knock them out. What the heck is upw ith that anyway?

And I took photos of my dog last night. Sweetest thing ever, turning 12 on April 1st. Unfortunately, none of them really came out. Ever since he was a puppy, whenever you get ready to take his photo, he lays down. Absolutely refuses to pose. Most frustrating thing of my life. I tried and tried and tried until I ran out of battery. Sigh. Dogs...


This past Saturday was the football playoffs. The name of my team is Buttt III. We played Balls Deep. The ref kept making comments like, "Buttt over Balls" and whatnot. Good ol' junior high fun... Can you believe that winter football is over? Which means that spring football (and outdoor soccer and softball) starts on April 1. April 1! This is Cleveland. Yes, it will still be cold...

I got hurt and football though. Bruised the one knee, twisted the other. Even better, I'm on two football teams. The quarterback on my one football team was subbing for the team that I played against in my second football game. And he's the one who injured me. It wasn't even his team. And I'm his teammate! I hope I'll be able to turn on it by Saturday, I can't now. Which means that I sat soccer out last night. That makes me unhappy...

My March Madness basketball brackets are all f'ed up. The one that destroyed me was Kansas. Because I'm an idiot and had them in the Final Four. Oops...

You know, while everyone knows about how wonderful Target it, what I fail to hear about is the Target cartscalator like the one in University Heights. (I say that, but I had two conversations about it last week.) Anyway, I just wanted to make sure that when I talk about the Target love, you realize that includes the cartscalator.

For those interested, next Monday Sam Fulwood is discussing being one of the few premiere African American columnists in the US. It's at Chester's Fine Cuisine on Noble Road in East Cleveland. I think Fulwood's opinions are always interesting, so I'll be there, and I encourage others to attend.


So getting to DC was hell. I show up for my 5 p.m. flight, and they tell me that my flight was changed to 4.30 -- except no one informed me. I was so irritated. I mean, if you change my flight, at least EMAIL me and let me know. You sent the confirmation to me, so I KNOW you have my email address... Then, I called the 800 WE CARE number to express my displeasure with Continental, and the wait was 45 minutes. I wasindignant, but not that indignant. I tried to call today again, and it was still 45 minutes. Again, I'm not that indignant. And I'm even less indignant than I was on Thursday. (You know, this was the same problem I had when they almost arrested me in Paris last summer; by the time I got home, I wasn't indignant anymore.)

was great spending the weekend with my cousin. He's the one who was in Afghanistan and I met some of his friends from the war (you all remember we are at war in Afghanistan, right?) It was weird because they know a side to him that I just don't know. I mean, they spent 24/7 together for over a year. They went through hell together. It's not unexpected, I just mean, there is this entire life that the family doesn't know about (and he won't tell us about.)

Oh, this was a funny story. The one guy says to me: "the first time I heard of your existence we were in a tower on like day 30 and he told me about his lawyer cousin who carried a lunch box purse." I guess when you spent 24/7 with people in those circumstances: (1) incredible bonds form; and (2) you talk about the most random things.

Then I got to se my other cousin, who was coming back from her spring break in Honouras. She flew into DC around 11 pm., and was driving back home the next morning around 9.30 am. So she came out with us that night, and crashed with us and my cousin drove her back in the morning. It was a regular reunion (and trust me, we were mocking the family who weren't there...It's what we do...)

I totally wanted to adopt a squirrel. There was this squirrel by my cousin's apartment. And he begged. Literally, whenever you walked out on the balcony, he ran from somewhere and ran to right underneaththe balcony and stood on its hind legs, this front to int he air. Totally begging. It was cute. (Incidentally, he really liked chips. Like Tostita ones. And if you threw him two of them, he'd take one, go bury, and grab the other and eat it. Seriously, I adored him.

I landed a little after 8 last night. I had a 10 pm soccer game. I didn't make it. If my game had been a 9, I would have gone, but 10 was so late. I was exhausted.

So when I was in DC, my cousin gave me this book that he said I had to read, Losing Julia, by Jonathan Hull. It's both a love story and a war novel, and it's incredibly powerful. The narrator is experiencing the war, then the next paragraph is an 81-year-old talking about regret, the next paragraph 10 years after the war ended. The most interesting part is that sometimes, the narrator isn't even sure when or what it is, the mark of an 81-year-old confused man waking from nightmares that were real, and not sure if he's wake. The prose is powerful, and beautiful. ("Old age is best spent in the editor's booth, whittling a life down to its greatest hits, which are played over and over again until the tape finally snaps.") I read it within 24 hours, I couldn't put it down.


So it is 4 months until my 30th birthday. (Don't forget my surprise 30th birthday party on 7/8 everyone. You are all invited.) But I have friends coming in to visit for my surprise party. And here's my concern: when my friends come in, I may get suspicious. I may start to suspect that, since they are here the weekend that I am turning 30, something is planned. I am looking for a reason why they are in town that I might believe, so as not to ruin the surprise. My friend came emailed a few ideas:

Todedo Harbor Light 102-Year Festival or
We all have tickets for the Baltimore Orioles- Indians series or
We are coming in for the photo safari at the zoo or
The Haunted Palace exhibit at the museum or
just passing through on the quest for hitting all amusement parks north of the Mason-Dixon line or
we threw darts at a map to decide where a mini reunion would be held...someone with bad aim hit Cleveland (I was rooting for Italy).

Do we think any of thse are convincing enough?

So I am a Gameday Audio Subscriber. What this means is I can listen to the baseball games online - any game, any time. This includes spring training. This was $15 for the entire season. It is quite possibly the best $15 I've spent...

OK, I'm off to DC now. Have a great weekend everyone!!


I went to the Night Under the Stars at the Museum of Natural History Saturday night. It was really fun. It was really cool drinking wine under dinosaur bones. And the Planetarium was awesome. I haven't been there in years. We went to the 11.15 planetarium showing, and everyone was already the opposite of sober and making wisecracks. It was fun. The band was good, the alcohol was flowing, the people were nice. People were dressed in everything from tuxes to jeans. There was the guy with a cape. (It takes a rather strong man to wear a cape, no?)

My soccer team may have found a full sized field. 11 players (rather than 8) and a regular goal (rather than the lacross practice goals that we played with last year). It's through Mayfield Village, playing at Progressive Fields. That would be cool. It would make Stephanie extremely happy. Happy enough to talk in third person.

I went rock climbing yesterday. It's been a while since I last went (when I was still sick) and it was pretty hard. I have to say, I think I'd get better at rock climbing if I went more often than once every two weeks. Perhaps I'll go Wednesday for ladies night (not sure what ladies night entails, other than it's cheaper). Ultimately, I failed to make it up three walls, and I made it up two walls. That's a 40% success rate. Excellent... But the funny part, there was something in the paper, and I got about 5 text messages when I was 25 feet in the air. And I kept taking my phone outo f my pocket to read the messages. Luckily, you don't really use your arms that much for rock climbing. But doing the corner wall is STILL hard (that's one of the walls I made it up, but it was like losting at Twister at times. And I swear, there were times I was hanging just by being wedged into the corner. I had no hand grip on anything, and at least one of my legs wasn't anywhere either. Yikes. OH, and a ceiling wall is one that I failed at so that's impossible anyway. One day...)

Finally, the Oscars. First, let me say that I found George Clooney's speech the most annoying. He was extremely arrogant. ("What I love about Hollywood is that we talk about issues before anyone else will touch them.") Yes, you are all wonderful. Of course, you are amazingly shallow and superficial and live in a bubble and have no idea about the real world, but whatever. Second, let me say that I found it ironic that the same time that Clooney was talking about how brave Hollywood was, they were incredibly cowardly in refusing to give the Oscar to the movie about the gay cowboys...


While my parents were never yuppies, I most certainly am a Yeppie. A Yeppie is the type of person who "quits their job to go backpacking, are slow to commit to relationships and are idealistic but confused." "Yeppies are ambitious but confused and won't commit to anything unless they know it will bring them enduring happiness." I feel good to know that who I am comes with a name. Like that someone makes it acceptable, ok. It's amazing how labeling can do that -- but that's another conversation for another day.
They are twentysomething, ambitious and confused. And they won't commit to anything until they are certain it will bring them enduring happiness. Meet the 'Young Experimenting Perfection Seekers' - Yeppies, as anthropologists are calling them.

Research shows that today's graduates are increasingly adopting a 'browsing' approach to choosing jobs, relationships, homes and life-styles. Far from knuckling down like their parents' generation, they believe true personal fulfilment can only come after years of anguished experimentation.

'Unlike the yuppies of the Eighties ... today's young adults are less certain and less single-mindedly materialistic than their predecessors,' said social anthropologist Kate Fox, of the Social Issues Research Centre[].

'Yeppies are unsure how to achieve their ambitions so they experiment through a shopping-style approach, trying to find the perfect job, the ideal relationship and the most fulfilling lifestyle.'

They postpone big, life-altering decisions until they feel they have exhausted all their options. 'It will be increasingly regarded as normal for young people to continue "Life Shopping" well into their late twenties and thirties. The way things are going, by 2012 thirty will be the new twenty as the "official" age for transition to adulthood ....

In every sphere of life the younger generation appears happy to procrastinate. ...By 'trying on' a number of different jobs or career paths, they learn what they are good at and eventually discover who they are and what they want from work. They have the flexibility to change direction and move on when something does not work out, rather than settling for an unsatisfactory or unfulfilling job, the study suggests.

The twentysomethings use a 'mate shopping' approach to marriage. In 1971 the average man got married at 25 to a 23-year-old woman. By 2003 this had to increased to 31 for men and 29 for women.

In addition, since 1990 the average number of partners people in the 16 to 44 age group have is up from two to four for women and from four to six among men.

'What we are seeing is not aimless, random promiscuity,' Fox says. 'The majority still believe in marriage; they are just prepared to wait longer and, more important, to "try on" a number of relationships until they find the one that is right for them.'

They have been called the 'Peter Pan' generation because they never want to grow up. But Fox believes their reluctance to commit is a major shift in aspirations.

'The something Yeppies are searching for may well be unattainable,' ... 'But they have high - some would say unrealistic - expectations and they move from job to job, or from career path to career path, desperately seeking perfection.'

... 'We have high expectations of personal happiness, which I don't think my parents' generation had.'

See here. And a critique on my subconsciously chosen lifestyle here.

What can I say? I would agree with that description. Am I supposed to settle? There is always time in life to settle. And why go through life unless you are happy. Life is hard enough. Taking away contentment?

Now the notion of enduring happiness may be a problem. Searching for the ideal is great. I support that. Trying on jobs to make sure it’s something that you like, that you are good at, that is great. The people who know everything at 15 scare the hell out of me. What are they, pod people? Or do they just convince themselves that they are happy? Do they even know what it means to be fulfilled in life? Or are they just burdened by other expectations of who they are and what they should think. How stifling. I would rather wander around in darkness for a while and be sure that I really found the exit of the maze, and not just some random light in the middle of it. I think I deserve happiness – I feel bad for previous generations that didn’t think they deserved it.

And as for waiting to get married, I think there is a world of difference between 18 when you graduate from high school, and 22 when you graduate from college. Likewise. I think there is a world of difference between 23, when you are first out of college, and 28, when you are starting to become your own adult in the work world and have a bit of credibility behind you to stand on. I don’t think that the person you are at 18 has anythingto do with the person you are at 22, any more than it reflects who you will be at 28. Even if you are perfect with someone at 18, that doesn’t mean you will be perfect for them at 28. I think it’s smart to wait until you are fully developed to enter into something as serious as marriage. Hell, maybe if more people did that, the divorce rate would go down. It certainly can’t get any higher, can it??

But here’s where my problem comes in. By searching for some mysterious and amorphous ideal, this thing that I will just somehow “know” when I find, I sometimes think that I won’t accept anything that isn’t guaranteed. You see the problem, of course. Life doesn’t come with a guarantee. Maybe it’s not as much a search for perfection as just cowardice to take a chance? Additionally, sometimes when you are trying to exhaust all your options – is the grass greener over there? – you find out that not only isn’t it, but by “life shopping,” we returned what could have provided happiness if only we weren’t so restless. But we’ve lost that opportunity.


Saturday Cleveland Indians single game tickets go on sale. Yes, I already have one of the 6-packs (the fireworks, naturally), but now I get to pick a random summer Saturday in July to go to a game, or get tickets for a great series against the hated Yankees... And for those interested, there is a (free) open house at Jacobs Field this Saturday from 10-2. How fun is that? Seriously, Jacobs Field may be one of my favorite places in Cleveland. Yes, there is something to be said about Cleveland Browns Stadium, but I'll tell you why I prefer Jacobs Field -- Cleveland Browns Stadium generally means it's winter-y time. I'm Greek, my blood requires nice warm weather. Jacobs field generally means it's summer-y time. (I say generally b/c it can be warm when it's the start of football season, and lord knows that it's cold in April off that lake. And who can forget the '97 World Series where it snowed? Snow and baseball? Only here in Cleveland, I guess.

And again, reminding everyone that the happy hour is tomorrow at the Cleveland Playhouse starting at 5.30. If you haven't been to the Cleveland Playhouse yet (shame) it's a fantastic space. There are a few theatres so more than one show may be there at the same time. You know, if you are under 40, they have a great deal on season tickets.

Oh, the rumors about Showtime and Arrested Development are back. And getting stronger. If that happens, I will drop HBO like a bad habit and get Showtime.

And February just ended. February is my least favorite month of the entire year, so I don't have to worry about it for another 11 months. Now that it's March, I demand nicer weather...
I haven't balanced my checkbook since Thanksgiving, with with everything getting stolen out of my car. I attempted that endeavor the other day. In those three months, I have spent $9000. I don't mean $9000 total. I mean I have spent $9000 more than I made in that time. Yes, I had to replace stuff that was stolen, yes it was Christmas, yes, I put a few thousand to my mortgage, but still! I'm not math major, and even I know this cannot continue...

My eye is all gross and icky. I am so irritated. I've been thinking about getting that lasik surgury. Any thoughts on that? Either at the Clinic or Clear Choice. I should have put money to cover it pretax, but I didn't because I figured I'd do it next year instead. (Ironic I first mention needing to stop spending money, then in the next breath discuss elective surgury.) But I'm so tired of contact, and eye problems.
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