Showing posts from 2012

Comfort Inn, Griffin GA Review

Comfort Inn, 1906 N Express Way, Griffin GA 30223

I stayed 10 days on business with my wife and 2 dogs. The staff is very friendly, and made sure we got the room we wanted (2nd floor, near the stairs, facing away from the highway) at check-in. We forgot an article of clothing behind the bathroom door, and they were very prompt in shipping it back to us.

This property is pet-friendly, but there's a $10 per pet per night fee (with no cap!). I'm not sure an extra $20 per night was worth it. At 10 nights, I spent $200 on pet fees (!!!), and I hardly think the hotel uses that revenue to get the room super clean; they certainly don't invest in a better pet walk or put out Pet Waste Bags. There is not much room to walk your dog on the property, so you have to walk through the adjoining neighborhood. However, this seemed to be the best place in Griffin to stay. 

 We stayed in their largest King room, the one with the full size microwave, fridge, and sink. There is lots of cabinet sp…

Robert Stroud Gravesite Exact Location (Birdman of Alcatraz)

Since I couldn't find anything very definitive on Robert Stroud's burial location online, I thought I'd help others out in their search of The Birdman of Alcatraz!

Obviously he's buried in the Masonic Cemetery just north of Metropolis, IL, but no one had good directions. Until now!

This is my Google Map location standing in front of his tombstone. If you can't find his grave by using this, you're just not going to find it!

Saki Sushi Hampton, GA

Surprisingly good sushi for a small town! Excellent service. We had 3 different rolls for dinner including the Teenager. The South Side was our favorite. Just the right amount of batter. All the "crab" is really krab, which is a little unfortunate, but common in your small-town sushi bars. The deep-fried Oreos are a perfect ending to the meal. The only downside is that the backwater county/city won't allow liquor sales on Sunday; we were looking forward to some hot Sake. Excellent prices and value.

Saturday Night Live 9-22-12

I really did like the first part of SNL tonight (9/22/12) with Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Mumford & Sons, notwithstanding the weak opening. Who can possible mock Kelly and Michael Strahan? At the very least, please take note that Michael has no lisp. If you're going to impersonate, at least get it right. Moreso, SNL needs better writers for black comics. I kinda like Jay Pharaoh (really like Keenan), but weak writing is gonna get him shipped off mid-season.

After Weekend Update and the 2nd Mumford performance, the rest of the show fell apart. Disaster. Up till then, we had some good sketches and commentary, including the GOB Tampon 'commercial', and JGL channeling his inner Muppet "Sam The Eagle" for his Tommy Bergamont Master Hypnotist sketch.

I really do think Vanessa Bayer (Assad's Two Best Friends) could become Seth's co-host. She has good timing, good energy, and doesn't seem to be trying too hard.

Aside from a solid 2nd performance by Mumford,…

Cole Haan Air Infinity Casual Venetian II (Casvnii) Milkshake Suede

We do love Nordstrom Rack! Top brands, tons of $$ off. I found these Cole Haan Air Infinity Casual Venetian II (Milkshake Suede) shoes hiding in the clearance section, in a green Nike box! I've been looking for a good pair of Cole Haan casual slip-ons for a while. These are going to replace my North Face slip-ons, which I've had since '08. They'll get their test today, walking around the National Mall. Socks or no socks will be the tough decision. The leather in-sole may not hold up real well to sweaty feet...

Normal price: $178.00. Clearance price: $69.97!

Sucklord Rejects 2: Reanimators

I got my Suckadelic Rejects 2 figure in the mail a few weeks back, and I finally figured out the parts-mix: "the same bootlegged suit from the Occupy Cybertron line, coupled with the infamous Sucklord helmet." The"production" version is the Sucklord Host 2012, commemorating his duties at the Designer Toy Awards during NYCC. Instead of the Clutter Magazine paint scheme though, mine is all silver, except for the black tie. Minor paint splatter on the bubble.

AVOID Shades of the Bay Annapolis

Shades of the Bay
136 Main Street Annapolis, MD 21401‎

AVOID. Here's a free sales tip: don't insult your customers. Customer service = sales. My wife and I were shopping for a pair of polarized aviator-style sunglasses here today and had the most unfortunate service experience! The guy who helped us was SARCASTIC, RUDE, AND UNPROFESSIONAL. He even admitted he was being sarcastic! 

 He said Ray-Ban doesn't make Aviators (55mm) polarized because of viewing the airplane gauges. Well, I'm looking at a pair of RB3025 (55mm) polarized on (gunmetal/blue) 

 He called my wife "high maintenance" and told her not to take things so seriously. When you're in the market for $200+ sunglasses, I don't think being picky qualifies for "high maintenance" and "too serious". Even if they had the desired sunglasses in stock (and they were 15% off for Labor Day), I would not buy here. Sunglass Hut seems to have what we're looking for, a…

Double Robot Related to Karen Plankton?

So is it just me, or is Double Robotics iPad Robot related to Karen Plankton from Spongebob Squarepants? You be the judge:

Romney Antichrist?

How do Evangelical Christians reconcile the following Bible verses with a vote for Mitt Romney, who believes in The Book of Mormon?

Revelation 22:18
King James Version (KJV)
For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book

Deuteronomy 4:2
New International Version (NIV)
Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the Lord your God that I give you.

Proverbs 30:6
New International Version (NIV)
Do not add to his words,
or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.

Galatians 1:8-9
King James Version (KJV)
8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
9 As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

This is how the Book of Mormon defends…

Perfect Weekend in DC

Sometimes things just really come together through a little bit of planning and a little bit of chance to combine into a fantastic, memorable weekend. Saturday takes most of the credit as being spectacular, but Sunday capped it off nicely. LA and I hit several new spots, new to us, new to me.

Saturday we started late at the Steven F Udvar-Hazy National Air and Space Museum. This is adjacent to Dulles airport, and is essentially 3 giant aircraft hangers joined together, displayed items too HUGE for display at the Mall. I'm not sure how they got the Concord to fit inside! Its hard to find just a few highlights from the Museum, but I loved the Engines display, the Space Shuttle Discovery, and the Enola Gay. But my absolute favorite was the SR-71 Blackbird. It was front and center, right when you walk into the museum, imposing and black. It was hard to get a good photo of it, since the paint absorbed all the light, and it either looks gray with a flash, or disappears into the backgroun…

1998 Honda CR-V

At least it happened while we were still in town, and not on the trip to DC, but the Honda lost power and died going up a hill in Lawrence KS. Thankfully I remembered we have State Farm's Roadside Assistance, so the tow was free to Jack Ellena Honda. And instead of having to car-shop today, we actually picked up the Honda in fine, running shape. Had to replace the alternator coil, cap, and rotor, but we got out under $500. But now I have a list of stuff that's wrong, including both upper and lower ball joint boots are cracked and worn on the right and left ($340), a broken right sway-bar link ($350), and replace brake fluid ($115). Those will have to wait until next trip back into town, and I think we'll skip the faulty emergency brake light, clean out washer nozzles, and replace oil pan gasket for now. All those charges add up, but its way less than a car payment, right?

Flash Player Crashing All Mac Browsers -- SOLVED!

About 2 months ago, I started having some issues with my Mac. Some websites would cause Safari to hang indefinitely, the little rainbow wheel spinning out of control, and I would have to either Quit or Force Quit Safari. So I installed Chrome. Same issue.

The main website I actually use and which caused the issue was Photobucket. The main page worked, the albums page worked, but if I clicked a photo, that page would cause the crash, so it became my benchmark.

A Google Search was no help at all.

I called Apple Care. They are awesome! I was 3 days outside of my 90, but they helped me out. We installed Firefox...same results. We did all the cookie-cutter stuff, Empty Cache, Reset Safari, Uninstall Flash, Reinstall Flash. Your results may vary, and I probably wouldn't recommend this unless its a last ditch effort. Fixing it took a little tech-savvy:

Completely uninstalled Flash Player, using Adobes Uninstaller.

Enabled the Root User: Enabling and using the "root" user in Mac…

Best Cocktail in NYC

Obviously we didn't go to every bar/restaurant in NYC, but we did go to quite a few and ordered a cocktail everywhere we went. That said, LA and I both agree that we had our best cocktails in New York City at Calle Ocho on the Upper West Side. LA had the Pisco Sour: Porton Pisco, Lime, Sugar, Egg Whites. The addition of the egg whites made it quite frothy!

I had one of my top 3 Manhattan's at Calle Ocho (my favorite is Jimmy's at The Stanley Hotel). Unfortunately, I can't find their drink description online, but I know it involved an infused bourbon, which was subtle.  I hate overly-flavored or vermouth-ed Manhattan. Gets in the way of good bourbon. Who knew I'd find a great Manhattan at a Cuban restaurant?

The ribs weren't too bad either!

Camp Hero State Park, Montauk NY

Above: Trail map of Camp Hero State Park in Montauk NY

On our last weekend on Long Island, we opted to skip going to the hustle-bustle of Manhattan and instead head East, past the Hamptons, to the very end of Long Island. On our way to Camp Hero State Park we had to stop off at the original Lobster Roll for, what else, lobster rolls! We grabbed them to go and kept heading east.

A tip for all visitors: they aren't kidding about the ticks! Be sure your pet is up to date on their repellent, and I recommend human repellent too! I found several small ticks on my nether-regions, and a few chiggers made nice work of my legs too.

We parked just south of the main entrance and ate our lunch along the bluffs near Battery 216, which was a small battery, nothing notable, though the view of the Montauk Lighthouse is impressive.

We then explored the trail near Battery 113 and climbed a steep trail to get onto the roof of the battery.  There are some great photo opportunities on top of and under…

Oak Brook Chicago Eating

If you remotely love food, Chicago is the city for you, catering to nearly every palate and budget. Staying out in Oak Brook was a little limiting, and there was some good food around, like the staple Chicago Dog and cheese fries at Portillo's. You really can't go wrong with anything on the overwhelming menu. It can be intimidating to order there, since there's alway a crowd, which moves quickly, and the order-takers are very no-nonsense.

We mainly chose to eat-in at the hotel, making a grocery run though sadly most of our groceries stayed behind, since we flew through the work and left a week sooner than planned. I didn't even open the bag of frozen shrimp! We ate our a few time in Oak Brook, but more by necessity or timing, mostly at the Oakbrook Center.

On one of our fist outings to the mall, we grabbed a light lunch at Mon Ami Gabi, where we fore-went the full meal and sampled some great smaller plates. It was cloudy and 50 degrees for our entire Chicago visit, an…

Robert Emmanuel "Bobby" Franks Grave Location

Bobby Franks Sept 19, 1909 - May 22, 1924. Murdered by Leopold and Loeb "by their desire to commit a perfect crime."

Why is the location still so hard to track down on the internet? The Franks family asked that Rosehill Cemetery not reveal the burial site, but it has been 88 years. I doubt it's much of a tourist attraction anymore. (Are any direct descendants still around?)


It's not that hard to find. It's in the Jewish section in the Southwest. Jacob Franks Mausoleum. It's right next to the road, not even that hidden, in Section T.

iPhone Tips and Tricks

Taken from These are my favorite/useful tips & tricks for the iPhone:

9. Scroll to the top, and fastFor music enthusiasts who have an extensive iTunes library, scrolling to the top of your Songs list may be a tedious process. (The problems we have to worry about these days.) But quite honestly, for iPhone users who have more than 10,000 songs stored, getting from ZZ Top to ABBA can require too many thumb thrusts. There’s an easier way to rocket up a long list: Tap the clock at the top of the screen. It'll automatically send you to the beginning. One click is all it takes. The trick works for contacts, e-mail, and websites as well.
18. Take a screenshotWant to show your friends a ridiculous text message conversation you had last night or easily save an image to your photo library? The screenshot option on the iPhone allows you to take a picture anywhere and anytime of anything on your 3.5-inch screen. When you find something you want to immortalize, simply press the …

EWWW. Cat Pee.

Unfortunately we had to utilize this website this weekend. 24 hours after the fact. Dried. Skip to step 2.

2. Mix a solution of 50% vinegar and 50% water in a jug or other container. Pour a small amount of this solution over the area of cat urine...Blot.

3. Sprinkle a good handful of baking soda over the stain.

4. Mix a quarter of a cup of hydrogen peroxide with a teaspoon of dishwashing detergent and drizzle it over the area where you have sprinkled the baking powder and work it in using your fingers (wear rubber gloves) or a brush. Leave it to work for 15 minutes then begin blotting again.
If you don't have hydrogen peroxide on hand you could substitute it in an emergency for a spray laundry stain remover.

***I used Resolve Carpet Stain Remover with Oxy***

5. When the mattress is dry vacuum thoroughly.Use a hard bristled brush to loosen up the baking soda if necessary. 
***I used my Dyson DC25 and the Stubborn Dirt Brush. I t…

Excel Spreadsheet Formulas for the Week

I'm in charge of the direct mailing at my office. Our leads come in via Excel sheets, which get fed through RoboAgent, and out pops an auto quote.

We recently had Database101 run our previous leads through their database to see if we could collect any phone numbers and/or emails.

We have 8 separate leads files, and 1 big amended file (with all the leads in no particular order). In order to get the quotes updated, I have to use the ReQuote feature, but wanted to update the individual leads files with phone/email. I opened the leads file, and copy/pasted the Amended file as Spreadsheet 2. So the Phone and Email columns were empty in Spreadsheet 1. Be sure that your columns are aligned! (ie if Phone column in Spreadsheet 1 is column C, then it better be C on Spreadsheet 2).  I used the following 2 links for the formula, just adjusting the columns to match and transplant:

=IF(ISNUMBER(MATCH($C7, Sheet2!$C:$C, 0)), INDEX(Sheet2!H:H, MATCH($C:$C, Sheet2!$C:$C, 0)), "")

where C is …

Really? One of these guys could be President?

On one hand we have Newt Gringrich. He's had 2 (known) affairs, which broke apart 2 marriages. He and one of his wives owed between $250K-$500K at Tiffany's. He was also formally disciplined for ethics violations by the House of Representatives. His (in)famous quotes are:

"I'm not a natural leader. I'm too intellectual; I'm too abstract; I think too much."

This man could be Commander-in-Chief:

“If combat means living in a ditch, females have biological problems staying in a ditch for thirty days because they get infections and they don’t have upper body strength. I mean, some do, but they’re relatively rare. On the other hand, men are basically little piglets, you drop them in the ditch, they roll around in it, doesn’t matter, you know. These things are very real. On the other hand, if combat means being on an Aegis-class cruiser managing the computer controls for twelve ships and their rockets, a female may be again dramatically better than a male who gets …