Forrest 12-7-1994 to 12-20-2006

They say that we should be thankful for the pain we feel with the loss of a loved one; as the pain we feel is a measure of the love felt for them. If this is the case, then I must have loved Forrest more than I’ve loved anything else in my life.

When I posted the previous post about having a bad day, I would have never had imagined that December 20, 2006 would become perhaps the worst day of my life.

When I woke up that morning, Forrest wasn’t doing well and after a trip to the vet’s I learned that he had developed a massive growth that could not be removed and was causing him great pain. Within 14 hours of the last post, Forrest was gone and I would begin to experience the worst days of my life.

I know Forrest may have been “just a dog.” But to me, Forrest was a combination of my best friend, my daily companion, and something that I loved more than anything else. His abscence is tremendous. I miss him deeply and am only now starting to make it more than an hour without breaking into tears.

I’m starting a new foundation in his name to help/provide assistance to rescue organizations, service dogs, etc. and will post more info.

Mama, take this badge off of me…

Shitty start generally leads to a shitty day. But there’s a bright point. Between a month where nothing seems to work right for me, and Forrest’s deteriorating health I received my Hanukwanzika gift from my sister and from Martin.

My sister gave me a very nice cigar over’s kit complete with my first ash tray. I don’t think I know how to smoke a cigar without ashing onto the floor, but this kit is so awesome I must learn. 🙂

Martin gave me a subscription to Atkins at home, making sure that by this time next year my goal of no longer being morbidly obese should be realized.

Update — Forrest has passed away.

Fred Posner, Barista

5 years ago, if someone said that I’d be buying an Espresso machine, I would have called them an idiot. I never liked coffee. The taste used to make me dry heave and other than yogurt, was one of my most hated flavors.

But, as we get older, we try new things. Perhaps it was my love of tiramisu. Maybe it was just the dire need of caffeine. But regardless, Fred has developed a taste for Espresso. Funny though… I don’t like a regular brewed coffee.

How much do I like Espresso? Well, there’s a new machine sitting in my kitchen that’s already brewed me 3 cups.

I bought me a cheapo model… but one that would be a decent cup of Espresso and in the long-run, tremendously cheaper than going to Starbucks. 🙂 Sure it’s a steam model, but it uses real coffee (not pods) and tasted pretty good.

Goodbye Dish Network

After spending a few weeks with my family in SoFla, I returned to the abode in Gainesville to find that Dish Network had dropped my NBC. Dropped. All gone.

Now, I had chosen the America’s Everything plan which was supposed to be all available channels and also paid extra for my local channels and the “super stations.” So why drop it?

Well, according to Dish Network:

A district court judge issued an injunction requiring DISH Network to shut off so-called “distant network” channels no later than December 1, 2006. Only about seven percent of DISH Network’s 12.46 million subscribers received Distant Network Programming (which includes ABC, NBC, CBS, or FOX broadcasts that originate from outside your community).

My response… “bullshit.”

Gainesville has no local NBC channel. The cable company here broadcasts the NBC channel from Orlando and why would they be able to provide for me NBC while Dish Network not? Simply put… money.

So… now the dish is gone (thanks to Joe) and my house looks much bigger without the huge raincatcher on it. 🙂

And now since I’m getting my Internet through Cox Cable, I’m transfering my Bellsouth number to Voip Internet Phone Service. I’m going to end up saving 250.00/month. 😀

Miami Vice wasn't just a show…

Well, after seeing Superman Returns the other week, I wasn’t all too excited to see Miami Vice. I mean, how many tv shows can we turn into movies? Between Charlies Angels, Dukes of Hazzard, Mission Impossible, Starsky & Hutch… I mean the list just never ends.

Miami Vice wasn’t just a television show– it was a cultural icon. Going to High School in South Florida in the late 80’s, you could easily tell the influence it had on all of us kids growing up. From everyone wearing boat shoes (something I still love) to losing socks, adding pastels to your shirt collection to using a “Miami” roll on your sleeves, we dressed the part. The 80’s wasn’t the high point of American fashion, but dammit, we thought we looked goooooood.

So my buddy calls me today and says we’re seeing Crockett and Tubbs in an hour and a half. I knew I had to go… it must be done. The whole time I’m on my way to the theater I’m remembering all of my favorite Vice moments… Bruce Willis and domestic violence watched from the hull of a sailboat… Ted Nugent destroying beautiful cars… Castillo going commando… Zito’s body being held by Switek… the Spyder… the Testarosa… Phil Collins… Shelia Easton… Glenn Frey… Stiltsville… and then I start smiling… and then I get excited… and now I’m driving to the theater singing In the Air Tonight and I’m ready for some Miami Vice.

Well, I wasn’t let down. At first, I didn’t think that I would love the new, updated Sonny… after all, Don Johnson is a freaking legend. That’s right I said it. Don Johnson made Miami Vice. Tubbs? Fuck Tubbs. Tubbs in my mind was always a supporting player. And there were times where if I heard Pillip Michael Thomas do one more Jamaican accent I would have just had a siezure. So my expectations for Jamie Foxx were low… not because of Jamie Foxx, but mostly because of Tubbs.

Well within 10 minutes, Sonny was Sonny and Tubbs now rocked. This is the new Tubbs… the Tubbs that you knew Tubbs could be.

I loved this movie. Kicked Superman’s ass. Kicked Superman’s ass so hard that– insert some phrase here. Granted, I don’t think this is a movie you can see over and over and over… but it was a great movie and I’m ready for the sequel.

Fred sees Superman Returns

Not since the final Star Wars film or perhaps even Spider-man had I been this excited to see a film. For the entire day, the thought of seeing Superman Returns has kept me in a great mood. Maybe it was too great of expectations, or perhaps it was an amazingly high pedestal that I could never allow a movie to reach; but in the end it comes down to one thing. I didn’t love Superman Returns.

Don’t get me wrong, here. I liked it. And when I break it down, I have to wonder why I didn’t love the movie. I thought Kevin Spacey was awesome-simply awesome. I thought that this movie had the best Lois Lane ever. Superman himself looked and felt like what Superman should be. The acting was great; the humor was there, but in the end… I just didn’t love this movie.

The first time I saw Superman on the big screen was with my mom in 1978. Even though I was a young boy, the movie so amazed me that I still vividly remember watching the film in the theater. I can recall the feeling I had when the toddler Clark lifted the Kent’s truck and smiled… or when Clark caught the bullet from the mugging… or even watching Superman return the little girl’s cat from the tree (and the smack afterwards). To me, Superman was real. This wasn’t special effects; this was the real adventures of a Superhero caught on film.

In almost 20 years of time, we’ve seen an amazing amount of movie magic. Thin about it… when they made Superman in ’78, there were no blue screens to help Superman fly. So, when Superman Returns debuted tonight I expected magic. I expected to feel the same way I had all those years ago in a small New York movie theater. And even with the great performances, I came away with the feeling that I just didn’t love this movie.

Am I being too hard? I don’t know. Spider-man is my favorite super-hero of all time. And when Tobey Maguire put on the Spidey suit I had enormous expectations– Huge, Colossal, Gigantic expectations. Even knowing that one of my favorite aspects of the hero had been changed (his web shooting), I still had almost entered the movie theater as if with a dare… in a way daring this new Spider-man to impress me. I walked out of the theater with the biggest smile on my face and saw the movie two more times that same weekend. This film took my dare and shoved it in my face. The movie not only lived up to my expectations; it surpassed them.

I expected nothing less from Superman. Was it a good film? Sure. But, I thought some of the coolest new effects of the movie I had already seen in the trailer (Superman being shot, etc.). And even though the performances were great, my favorite part of the movie was a trailer… and that trailer is for Spider-man 3.

Rescue Me is the Best Show on TV

How good is Rescue Me? How good? I can’t even sum up the fucking words to give the due credit this show deserves. I was going to sum up my feelings of the show is nonsensical song lyrics, such as: Rescue Me is simply the best. Better than all the rest. Or perhaps: If I could trap time in a bottle, the first thing I’d want to do is watch Rescue Me.

But then I thought, nah… there’s only two words that can describe this show: Fucking A. That’s it.

Those two words sum up everything you could possibly express… Hey Fred, you watch Rescue Me last night? Fucking A. How funny was Rescue Me last night? Fucking A. How sad was it when Tommy found the glove? Yeah, Fucking A. How hot was Marissa Tomei? Fuck King A.

Speaking of Ms. Tomei… I’ve had a thing for her ever since I saw My Cousin Vinny with Peter Egan in the middle of the old Oaks Mall theater… the one that’s now the food court. There’s something about an attractive, dark haired woman with a New York accent that drives me crazy. She had me at “yeah, you blend” or “world fucking traveler.” At one of those moments, I knew that one day I wanted to be Mr. Marissa Tomei.

Anyway, one night a week I give myself an hour of no work, no phone calls, no blackberry. Just complete and total Fred time. And that one hour I spend sitting in front of the big screen, watching Rescue Me and truly realizing that the best show on TV is Tuesday’s at 10pm on FX. Check your local listings for channel information. 🙂