Sunday, December 31, 2006


I had been considering posting about Saddam Hussein's execution, but one of my fellow bloggers beat me to it. Jim Miller's take on the situation is well put, and he expressed my feelings on the subject much better than I would have. So check it out, and feel free to comment here and/or there.

In other news, today is the start of a three-day weekend for me. Katrina and I are going to a new year's party with some people from the church. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

We're Home

After more time than should have been required at O'Hare, Katrina and I arrived in Columbus late this afternoon.

Our flight from Des Moines to Chicago was delayed more than an hour because of visibility problems in Chicago. This made us miss our connection by mere minutes and sentenced us to a three-hour layover before United's next flight to Columbus. I passed the time reading John Grisham's latest (a good read, but very different from his usual style) and USA Today.

A big "thanks" to Jennifer and Landon for picking us up at the airport despite the change of plans. (I don't think they read my blog, but we'll go with it anyway.) We had dinner with them before coming home to unpack, read all the Christmas cards that came in the mail while we were gone, and enjoy broadband Internet access for the first time in a week.

We had a great time with family this week, with lots of games (mainly Carcassone) and food. Our Christmas haul:

Two Dave Barry books
A Carcassone sequel
Cubs T-shirt (to replace the one lost in China)
An MST3K DVD with "Manos: The Hands of Fate" (one of the classic MST episodes) and "Santa Claus Conquers The Martians" (haven't seen this one before, but it sounds great)
Best Buy gift card

Perfume set
Law and Order: Criminal Intent Season 2 DVD set
Two Lynn Morris books
Two classical music CDs

To share
I Corinthians 13 wall hanging
Money towards a new TV to replace my 13-inch dorm-room model

Sadly, about half of the above items are in the suitcase that didn't make it to Columbus with us. United says it's on the way and will be here tomorrow, thankfully.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


We're safely in Iowa, and we actually caught "Headlines" last night, so here's the weekly rundown:

3. (a headline) "Meals on Wheels providing pet food for seniors"
2. (in an ad for a senior-citizen center)
"Senior Center Events: New Year's Eve Party ... Countdown starts at 12 noon!"
1. (the headline on an ad with a large picture of a knife) "What Santa wishes for!"

Monday, December 18, 2006

Is it heaven?

Yes, it is, but that's beside the point.

Katrina and I are off to Iowa today for a week with my family for the holiday. We're flying out this afternoon, and we'll be back on the 26th. (For any burglars who read my blog: We have three vicious guard dogs watching over things while we're gone; we also have very alert and nosy neighbors. So there.)

I'm not sure how much posting I'll do on the road, but I can tell you that your usual "Headlines" post likely will be preempted tonight and next Monday.

What are your exciting Christmas plans?

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

A Pet Peeve

I can't stand the way parents make up names for their kids today or -- even worse -- decide their kid needs to be unique with a nontraditional spelling of a common name.

It seems this comes up every few days at work. Last night, it was Nacole Jones, a girl on Newark's basketball team. Apparently, she pronounces it Nicole. But imagine the number of times she's had her name misspelled or had to correct someone's pronunciation.

It was understandable when my students in Wuhan had humorous non-names or misspelled a name, but I just don't understand how native speakers can do this. (A few memorable examples from Wuhan: Orange, Aster, Wakin, Celery, Flybird, Aki, CoCo, Lazaro, Del Piere, Sharing, Eleven, Juicy, Even, Edder, Sea Piano, Jungle, Nicing, Zero, Syringa, Serious, and Linze. Some other teachers in Wuhan had even more humorous "names," some of which are not appropriate for my blog.)

Any other silly names/spellings that you'd like to share?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006


These aren't that good; tonight's highlights were just too visual.

3. (in a section called Fun Facts) About 9,000 Americans die each year from food poisoning.
2. (in a classified ad) Firewood for sale ... Caution: Flammable
1. (in a classified ad) Wanted: Exotic dancing goats

Sunday, December 10, 2006

BCS title game called off?

Check out this article from The Onion.

Great parody is often exceedingly close to the truth! The part with Corso's fake quote about the BCS and the paragraphs at the end about Notre Dame are especially close to reality.


Sorry for the lack of posting lately. Our city editor was on vacation most of this week, so I had extra work to do and -- best of all -- virtually unlimited overtime.

Working 47 hours + 10 hours commuting = Very little blogging time.

Two fun tidbits from work this week:
1. My nominee for headline of the year is on this article.
2. Has anyone else ever heard of such a gross dessert as this? (One of my co-workers brought this in on Friday. It was actually good once you removed it from its context.)

In happy news, it seems that my blog might be available again for my friends in China. If you're reading from China, feel free to leave a comment letting me know you're back.

Speaking of China, Katrina and I will be finishing off Christmas cards today and tomorrow. I just hope the ones going to Wuhan get there before 2007! If you still haven't given us your address, consider this your last chance.

Finally, I've added another National Public Radio segment to my must-hear list each week. Around 8:40 a.m. Eastern every Sunday, they have a Sunday Puzzle segment with The New York Times' crossword puzzle editor. Each week, they play on-the-air with one listener, and then offer a challenge to the listeners to figure out at home. One person who submits the correct answer at their Web site is chosen to play on the air the next week. (I've figured out this week's challenge; give it a try!)

Friday, December 08, 2006

Spring Training is just two months away!

I love this headline. (It's from The New York Times, so free registration might be required.)

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


4. (an ad) "Search and rescue dog: LOST"
3. (police blotter) "A $475 purse with food stamps was stolen from a Mercedes."
2. (a Realtor's ad slogan) "We'll show you houses while the owners are sleeping!"
1. (police blotter) "The suspect tried to get rid of the gun by throwing it in the river. ... He apparently forgot it was frozen."

Monday, December 04, 2006

What's Inside The Box?

A stupid criminal, that's what.

Check out this crime article from New Jersey, which came to my attention via Dave Barry's blog.


Sunday, December 03, 2006


I've seen some blowouts in person at the Rhodes, but never one like this.

In what must have been a thrilling game played in front of 31 people in Salem, W.Va., Lincoln (Pa.) beat Ohio State-Marion, 201-78, on Saturday. No, that's not a typo, and I did not make this up. It came across the AP wire while I was at work yesterday, so I thought I'd share.

Here's the AP story, and here's the official box score. Some highlights, other than the obvious Division III scoring record:

-Lincoln played 16 players; OSU-Marion played 5.
-Lincoln attempted 141 shots, including 60 3-point attempts. As a team, they had 75 rebounds, 40 assists and 48 steals.
-Lincoln's Sami Wylie nearly could have won the game alone, finishing with 69 points on 23-for-44 shooting and 21 3-pointers.

Let's just say there's a big gulf between the Scarlet Wave of OSU-Marion and the Buckeyes.

Speaking of the Buckeyes, we'll see who they get in the national title game later today. With USC's loss to UCLA on Saturday, the glaring need for a college football playoff is even more apparent.

As for the only real Division I football championship, UMass, Appalachian State, Montana and Youngstown State are still alive in the I-AA tournament.