Tuesday, July 31, 2007

**Vacation Update**

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Well, I must admit I'm not nearly as annoyed with having limited access to a computer as I thought I'd be. Since I'm online for a minute, I thought I'd share a little about my trip to NY with you guys.

Friday - Drinks at the Brooklyn Inn. Its a neighborhood bar in Boerum Hill. Cheap beer, nice people, nothing spectacular. After a night of drinking, I needed greasy food. I picked up two slices at a pizzeria. Hit the bed early...tired.

Saturday - The day started with breakfast at a diner off of McCarter Highway in Newark (I know, its Newark, but the food is sooooooo good.) We headed to the city for some afternoon shopping in midtown (I hit up the J. Crew at Rockefeller Plaza) and downtown (Club Monaco and Bloomingdales in Soho both had sales).

Later that afternoon, we went to this amazing rooftop party in Brooklyn (Clinton Hill to be exact). Everything about it was fantastic and authentic Brooklyn. The guys, the girls, the music, the diversity. Couple that with free beer and, ahem, herbal refreshments in the form of cupcakes abound and I literally had the most fun I've had in years at a party.

After the party, my Brooklyn guide took me to the best soul food resturant I've ever Ben to. Its called 'A Night's Cook' at Fulton and South Oxford in Fort Green. I had grilled salmon, Mac and cheese, yams, potatoe salad. The food was really amazing.

After that night, I was sold on Brooklyn. I looked on Craig's list for BK apartments. Pat places average about $1200. That's about the same as a slightly above average apartment in Baltimore!

Sunday - Sunday started with brunch at a French cafe in the Meat Packing District. It was nice. I had poached egg and smoked salmon and some sort of bread. The only issue was that it started raining, but I couldnt complain. The weather gods smiled on me all weekend long. After that, I drove to Queens to visit a buddy.

Monday - Oh, well, I guess I'll include this. I went to Fireplace, a bar in Dupont Circle in DC last night...alone. I didn't leave alone. I know what you're saying, this is completely out of character and utterly naughty-this is nothing like Mr. Jones. No sex. Lots of most everything else though. No regrets.

I'm in Atlanta now. Hope you guys are enjoying whatever you're doing!

We'll catch up when I get back.

Thursday, July 26, 2007


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Some of you have noticed that I've been posting less frequently of late. Some of you have even sent emails asking the reason for it. The reason is simple:


There's really no other way to put it. My job has been working me like a Hebrew slave. This has been the busiest I've ever been at any office...ever. I'm overseeing six projects right now and each of them have super firm deadlines that have to be met. Sucks, I know.

I've been taking some solace in knowing that if I made it through this week, I'd be good to go. I'm on vacation starting tomorrow and won't return until next Monday. I don't have big plans or anything (I'm going to NYC tomorrow until Monday and then Atlanta Tuesday until Thursday. I'm taking the next weekend all to myself at the beach), but at least I won't be in the office. I'm serious about this. No email, no phone calls, no Blackberry, no conference calls, no meetings, no voice mail...nothing.

I need at least one full 'Ripken-less' week. I hope this vacay actually helps rejuvenate me. I'll be thrown to the fire as soon as I return. My company's biggest annual event occurs about a week after I get back.

I probably won't post much next week, so be safe and have fun doing whatever you're doing.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

::Sigh (of Desperation)::

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Dear God,

Please save the youth. Especially this one.

Mr. Jones

Sunday, July 22, 2007

What a difference two years make...

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So...a couple of years ago, I was fat. Really fat. I mean, I wasn't "Jerry Springer needs to cut a hole in the wall of my house in order for me to get out" fat, but I was heavy. Like...300+ pounds heavy.

One day in the summer of 2005 I got tired of being heavy and just suddenly changed my eating and excercise habits. I limited myself to 1500 calories per day and started walking and then running about 4-5 miles per day. Now, I don't go to the gym and stuff nearly as much, but I'll get back in the groove of things eventually.

I was talking to Royce aka YABM about this today and he mentioned he wanted to see pics, so here goes:



Hooray me!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Good sex today keeps the doctor away

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I’ve never had a bad day after a good night and, fortunately for me, I haven’t had a bad day in about four days. :-)

Well, apparently, there are more benefits to having sex than having good mornings after. I found this article on MSNBC.com which asserts that good sex is not only good, it’s good for you. I've saved you time by highlighting (in red) its important points. Essentially it says, the more (safe) sex, the better!!!

Here’s a snippet:

1. Easing depression and stress

Bass says this is pretty definite. “The release from orgasm does much to calm people. It helps with sleep, and that is whether we talk about solo sex or sex with a partner,” she says.

But wait, there’s more. A recent study of college students at the State University of New York in Albany suggests that semen acts as an antidepressant. Females in the study who were having sex without condoms (see safe sex caution, above) had fewer signs of depression than women who used condoms or abstained from sex.

“These data are consistent with the possibility that semen may antagonize depressive symptoms,” the authors wrote, “and evidence which shows that the vagina absorbs a number of components of semen that can be detected in the bloodstream within a few hours of administration.”

I kid you not, ladies. Semen is good stuff. It gives a shot of zinc, calcium, potassium, fructose, proteins -- a veritable cornucopia of vitality!

2. Relieving pain

Orgasm is a powerful pain-killer.
Oxytocin, a natural chemical in the body that surges before and during climax, gets some of the credit, along with a couple of other compounds like endorphins.

According to a study by Beverly Whipple, professor emeritus at Rutgers University and a famed sexologist and author, when women masturbated to orgasm “the pain tolerance threshold and pain detection threshold increased significantly by 74.6 percent and 106.7 percent respectively.”

3. Boosting cardio health

I can’t resist another plug for semen. It’s possible that male goo can lower blood pressure Another recent study found that women who gave their men oral sex, and swallowed, had a lower risk of preeclampsia, the dangerously high blood pressure that sometimes accompanies pregnancy.

No, I’m not making this up. “The present study shows that oral sex and swallowing sperm is correlated with a diminished occurrence of preeclampsia,” said the Dutch authors.

See? We told you it was good for you.

There have been other studies showing that sex lowers blood pressure, and might even protect against strokes because of its stress-relieving ability.

But when we think of sex and the cardio system, we tend to think of poor old Nelson Rockefeller having a heart attack in flagrante delicto. Well, not only does that hardly ever happen, but sex might actually protect the heart. A 2002 report from a large British population of men said “some protection from fatal coronary events may be an added bonus” of frequent sexual intercourse.

4. Countering prostate cancer

Over the past few years, several journals have published studies showing that the more ejaculations the better.

Now the Journal of the American Medical Association no less, has reported that “high ejaculation frequency was related to decreased risk of total prostate cancer.” It doesn’t matter how a man climaxes -- intercourse or masturbation. So next time he says, “Really, honey, it’s therapy,” he could be telling the truth.

5. Healing wounds

Some evidence suggests sex can be rejuvenating to the point of helping wounds to heal faster. Several experiments have shown that oxytocin can help even stubborn sores, like those suffered by diabetics, to heal by regenerating certain cells.

6. Fighting aging

Maybe it’s the rejuvenation, maybe the happiness, maybe all of the above. One thing’s for sure: “Use it or lose it” is literally true. For example, postmenopausal women often suffer from “vaginal atrophy,” which is what it sounds like and can lead to all sorts of complications like What’s one way to prevent it? More intercourse.

Sex is a form of exercise, after all, and like all exercise, it burns calories and can help battle the onslaught of the years. In fact, nursing home experts say they wish oldsters would have more sex.

Can sex really make you live longer? Maybe. In the same population of British men I cited earlier, researchers found a 50 percent reduction in overall mortality in the group of men who said they had the most orgasms. There was a dose response: the more orgasms, the better.

Of course, as Kinsey’s Bass reminds us, it could be that these blokes were just healthier and felt like having sex more often. But since there’s no evidence that lots of sex is bad for you, what have you got to lose?

MSNBC.com - Not just good, but good for you.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

J. Holiday gets noticed.....finally.

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J. Holiday didn't get much play with his first single, but his second single certainly is. I've known of him for some time now. He's a DC native and has been performing at clubs and venues in the area for a minute now.

He's actually pretty talented and believable, if not authentic (although I should mention that the image creators over at Capitol Records did get to him. He's much more 'DC' than he appears to be.) Hell, if whack ass Omarion and Chris Brown can blow up, why not J. Holiday.

His new single is actually pretty cool. Ballsy, too, but its a hot track nonetheless. I'ma put you to bed...talk about bold proclamations.

How could anyone not love this song?

Friday, July 13, 2007

I'm in awe

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Note: This post preempted another post I was writing and on track to post today. My apologies to the reader who may or may not be disappointed by my decision to go with this story. Let's just say this moves me slightly more than the other topic does.

I'm sure there are better, less crass ways to say this, but I'm struggling to find one at the moment: Victoria Beckham is the shit. Not many women in world could handle what accompanies being married to world's most popular athlete let alone with this much style, class and grace. Her husband, after all, is charged with the task of making soccer relevant in the United States.

When I saw these pics from the press conference announcing David's arrival in Los Angeles, all I could do it stare for a good 10-15 minutes. I am in literally awe of her.

Click here to experience more of Posh and Becks.

International Muse???

When I created this blog, I intended for it to be strictly therapeutic. I figured, I'd vent about whatever bothered/interested me, no one would care and it would eventually get lost in the abyss that is the World Wide Web.

Well, then, to my surprise, people started to actually respond to my ideas, rants and randomness. Before I knew it, I developed internet rapports with some really interesting like minded people from all over the United States. BTW, I'm so greatly for the guys who frequent my blog. You guys are great.

Because I'm a geek, I’ve recently started tracking the number of people (and their respective points of origin) who visit Just Me, My Dignity and This Guitar Case. I was pleasantly surprised with what I found. More people come here than I thought (you all should start replying!!!).

If you ever doubted I’m not a numbers/stats crazed dork, I present the following.

Below is a map charting the origins of people who have been to this site more than once in the last 10 days:

While I love my readers from the States, I'm particularly excited about the repeat readers from Mozambique, Germany, Russia, Singapore and Australia.

Just call me International Jones.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Hot town, summer in the city

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I hate heat. I just don’t do well in it. I get easily annoyed and frustrated by it - it really grinds my gears.

The only time I remotely come close to enjoying warm weather is when I’m vacationing. Despite being quite lovely, walking through the streets of Baltimore in 100 degree weather doesn’t quite compare to relaxing poolside in Mykonos or at the beach in St. Tropez.

Today marks the 4th consecutive day that temperatures in the Northeast will be above 90-degrees. That qualifies as a heat wave, right? Shouldn’t offices and local governments be shutting down due to unsafe conditions or something? A cool down isn’t expected until Thursday evening. I take solace in knowing that everyone in the region (from New York to Washington) is suffering with me.

I really shouldn’t complain too much. It could be worse. At least there aren’t floods and wildfires here.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Ma'am, don't count to 10...beat your kids.

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I went to the Whole Foods down the street for lunch to grab some sushi and encountered the most rambunctious, incorrigible foursome of children I've come across in quite some time. Well, the two girls weren't that bad, but the two boys were trouble from the get-go.

I spotted the group getting out of a blue Volvo station wagon parked in front of the grocery store. They gave Mom fits as she tried to get them ready to cross the street. The ringleader, who's name I learned was Alex, kicked the shit out of his little sister and tried to act like he didn't. It was a little too warm outside for me to be sticking around for this melee, so I headed in.

I'm in the produce section, sampling looking at grapes when I felt this cart bump my ankle. The cart didn't hit me hard, but it hit me. I look up to see who's responsible for this and didn't see anyone. I glance over and standing in the middle of the floor is none other than Alex's bad ass. This runt had pushed the cart clear across the floor. Mom saw what he did and was apologetic. I continued shopping for produce.

I picked up some spicy soft-shell crab sushi for lunch, then headed over to the bakery to get the bagels for the orgasmic organic apricot & ginger cream cheese (It's soooo good). Suddenly, I hear the loudest, most shrilly scream I've ever heard in a grocery store. The scream was following by incessant crying. I glance over and one of the daughters is having a fit on the floor near the cookies:

Girl: (crying loudly)

Mom: Stop it! Stop it this instant!

Girl: (still crying) I WANT A COOKIE!!!!!!

Mom: I offered you options and you chose not to make a decision. You can hold onto the ice cream, ok? Let's go pay.

Girl: (falls limp on floor and starts crying more loudly)

Me: (completely bewildered and alternately staring blankly at the woman and the screaming child)

Mom: Get up Sarah. I'm not kidding.

Girl: I WANT A COOKIE!!!!!!!!!

Mom: Sarah, I'm gonna start counting.

Girl: (screaming)

Mom: 1-2-3-4...

Meanwhile, in the middle of all this commotion, her boys use this as an opportunity to chase each other up and down the the aisles.

I had finished selecting my bagels. Mom was still counting.

Question: I'm usually one who advocates not hitting kids, but some of those bastards beg for it. Honestly, I think Mom just needs to whack one of them in public just once. One taste of public embarrassment/shame and slight pain would do those kids some good. My recommendation to Mom would be to get Alex's ass in line. Strike the shepherd and the sheep will scatter.

In your opinion is it ever acceptable to be physical with children?

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Weekend Review

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Philadelphia was amazing and more than worth the 85 minutes it takes me to drive there. It's a wonderful city with lots of offerings. I never lack things to do there.

I got into Philly at 2am on Saturday. I was hungry and since it was late, I drove to Gino's, the one place I knew would be open at that hour.

Saturday afternoon, I did some shopping at Liberty Place (picked up two shirts, some new boxers, socks and a new belt) and visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Saturday night, I overindulged at Roy's. It was quite a spread. I came with what felt like an insatiable appetite, but surprisingly I got my succulent fill of the most tantalizing loin I've ever had.

Everything about that meal was perfect.

I'm definitely going back for seconds.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Mega Millions Jackpot up to $126 Million

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I don't gamble. It's just never been my thing. Besides, I've got enough vices to deal with.

Anyway, I saw a billboard this morning advertising the $126 Million Mega Millions pot. The first thing I thought, "Damn, whoever wins that will be more wealthy than some small countries."

Then I thought, "Hmmm, what would I do with all that money?"

For the purposes of this discussion $126 Million is just too much money. So let's discuss a more finite number.

My question is this:

If $5 million appeared in your bank account, how would you spend it?

I would:

- Immediately bank $500K. This would be split between my already established 401K, CDs and high yield savings accounts. Since these are winnings and not earnings, I dunno if 401K investment would allow me to circumvent taxes, but I'd try.

- $500K would go into the stock market.

- $1 million would be used to bankroll a real estate development project in either Baltimore, Washington or Philadelphia. That would get some residual income flowing.

- My sister (and her family), my mother and I would each get new homes. Nothing extravagant. Maybe a $500K suburban new build for each of them and a urban waterfront condo for me.

- The rest would go to charity. $100K to my high school, $200K to the Maryland Athletics Department (maybe then I'd be able to get Maryland Basketball season tickets) and the rest would be divvied up somehow.

How would you spend your $5 mill?

Thursday, July 5, 2007

I need to make some life changes

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So, I went home yesterday and decided to take action on two of these issues.

I walked my dog yesterday...twice. He loved it. I just need to do it more often to get him in the habit of going out of the yard every single day. It tired him out too.

In addition to the walk I took with my dog, I ran 5.2 miles around the neighborhood. I love the feeling of fit and will either hit the gym or run everyday.

New job and new job could be taken care of shortly. New relationship to follow?

I don't like where I live anymore.

I'm tired of Baltimore and need to go elsewhere. It's not the city I take issue with (I was actually telling YABM the other day about the wonderful encounter I had the other day with the friendliest neighbor I've ever met.) My issue is how mundane life has become. I wake up, go to work and go home. When I do chill, I chill with the same people at the same places, etc. I feel like I've gotten all I can get from the DC-Baltimore area.

I've been all over Craig's List this morning looking for apartments in Atlanta and Philadelphia (there's actually more to this story that we'll get to later). I have a buddy who lives in Atlanta. I'm gonna arrange a trip down there to find somewhere to live...hopefully. I swear that I'm honestly contemplating just packing up and, armed with my meager life savings, just moving.

I don't like my job anymore.

This, actually, isn't news. The honeymoon was over a looong time ago. I've disliked what I do for a few months now and I'm sure it's reflected in my demeanor and quality of work. That's something that I'll have to change...and quickly.

I'm no fool. I know all about not burning bridges and being careful who I offend, etc. When I do cut things off, it will be professional and amicable.

I don't go to the gym anymore.

I haven't been to the gym in damn near a month. I haven't been to the gym on a consistent, daily basis in God knows how long. This would be fine if I were running in my neighborhood in lieu of the gym, but that's not the case. I've been eating whatever I want to and I'm starting to feel it. I've gained 7 pounds in two months. My friends don't notice it, but I do. I keep saying 'tomorrow is the day I re-commit'. So far, not-so-good.

I don't like the idea of having a dog anymore.

Let me be clear. I love my dog. When he acts appropriately, he's fine. When he runs amuck, I could beat the crap out of him. I like having him around, but he's been doing little things that really piss me off. I'm not sure if puppies just go through this terrible phase or what, but he needs to pull it together.

- He won't go into his crate when he's supposed to. I used to open the door and he'd calmly follow me inside to his crate. After some gentle nudging, he'd go in and that would be that. Well, not his ass makes me chase him outside for 20 mins. When I finally do catch him, he falls limp in the grass like bad ass kids do in Target.

- He won't go on his leash. He gives me such trouble that I haven't walked him in days. He's been chillen in the backyard.

- Dog ownership takes time. I've been doing a good job with him so far, but I've also been questioning my ability to continue.

Right now, the good still outweighs the bad. I hope his behavior improves. I'd hate to have to part with my pup.

I don't like the idea of being single anymore.

I'd like to be involved with someone. Finding someone I like and can appreciate has proven to be tougher than I thought in my area. Perhaps my fortunes will change if I move to the A.

::crosses fingers::

Random Question:

A fling from a few years ago contacted via MySpace the other day. Well, I guess what we had qualifies as slightly more than a fling. Anyway, I was invited to Philadelphia for the weekend. If I go, I know something sexual gonna happen. It's been a minute (like...6 months) since, well...you know.

Other than having trouble finding someone to fornicate with on a regular basis, there's no significance to this streak. Trust me, I don't mind ending it. I actually want this streak to end, but I know me and I know that if this happens, it'll open the flood gates (pardon the pun) and I'll want it night in and night out.

Should I or shouldn't I?

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy Birthday America!!!

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(Pre-crack) Whitney killed this. Her performance at the 1991 Superbowl is easily the best rendition I've EVER heard of our national anthem. I still get goosebumps when I hear it.

Random history lesson:

Although the 'Star Spangled Banner' is the song most commonly associated with Independence Day celebrations, the United States didn't even have a national anthem when it succeeded from British rule in 1776.

It wasn't until dawn of September 14, 1814 during the War of 1812's Battle of Baltimore when Francis Scott Key, a lawyer from Washington who had come to Baltimore to negotiate the release of a civilian POW being held by the British, witnessed and survived a battle between the Americans and the Brits, saw the U.S. flag emerge intact and wrote a poem entitled 'The Defense of Fort McHenry'. The poem was later set to music (ironically enough, our national anthem was set to the tune of a British drinking game song) and become 'The Star Spangled Banner'.

Hooray America.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Love Radiohead. Love these songs.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007 0

Good for DJ...

When I told one of my buddies that former Maryland guards Mike Jones and DJ Strawberry had outside shots of getting drafted in last week's 2007 NBA Draft, I was laughed out of the gym.

Well, I was half right.

DJ, son of troubled former New York Met Darryl Strawberry, was selected with the 59th overall pick by the Phoenix Suns.

Because I love random sports stats, I'll offer a few.

DJ is the 30th player from the University of Maryland to be selected in the modern NBA Draft - Maryland is 9th among all Division 1 programs in putting players in the NBA. Maryland is currently tied for 6th nationally (3rd in the ACC...damn Duke and Carolina) among all Division 1 programs with active players on NBA rosters.

If you don't follow Maryland Basketball or the ACC, here's the scoop. DJ is a off guard (although personnel issues forced him to play point for a season a couple of years back, he is NOT a combo guard) who due to his defensive ability often matched up with and bested some of the top guards in the country during his years as a Terp. He's most successful driving the lane and in transition, but developed a mid-range and perimeter game during his last couple of seasons.

Life is all about take advantage of chances. This is his.

Good luck actually making that team, DJ. You'll need it.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Priveledged position pervails yet again...

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If your confidence in the 'good ole boy' club ever wavered, fear not - it's well and in tact. Today, Scooter Libby, former top aide to our myth of a vice president, learned that being indited by a federal grand jury on charges of obstruction of justice, perjury and making false statements to federal investigators ain't all that bad...if you know the right people.

Be honest, was there ever any doubt that this wouldn't happen? Even Stevie Wonder saw this coming.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Either Young Joc's been hanging out with Nicole Richie lately...

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or he's on that crack diet. Either way, his new bobble head look isn't whats up. Not a good look. Nice teeth tho.

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