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Friday, February 29, 2008


"Movie Friday: "Goodbye Canine"

Another Friday, another movie. This week my selection is titled, "Goodbye Canine".

Today's animated film was created by three French students, and is based upon a French legend. It features a squad of high-tech special ops mice sent on a mission of extreme importance. A dark and dangerous mission... to remove a canine.

Enjoy, and have a wonderful weekend everyone!

-Jon

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"More Snow; More Shovel"

More snow fell on Milwaukee last night. About 2-3 inches. That'll definitely move us closer to the tenth spot on the list of snowiest winters. The official totals haven't been posted yet, though, but as soon as they are, I'll add an update right here. Stay tuned!

Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

UPDATE: - (7:27 PM)
With a little more snowfall during the day today, our grand total for winter clocks in at an impressive 78.9 inches. 2.4 inches fell since midnight. Less than an inch remains before we hit the record books. Anyone care to guess when that'll happen? :)

-Jon

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"Leap Day"

Happy Leap Day! Today -- February 29 -- exists because 2008 is a leap year. And such a year only occurs every four years in order to keep the 12-month calendar synchronised with the length of the astronomical year (aka, the Earth's orbit around the sun).

So, that said, here are a few fun things that happened on February 29:
  • 1892 - St. Petersburg, Florida is incorporated.
  • 1940 - For her role as Mammy in Gone with the Wind, Hattie McDaniel becomes the first African American to win an Academy Award.
  • 1956 - Dwight D. Eisenhower announces to the nation that he is running for a second term as President of the United States.
  • 1972 - Outfielder, Hank Aaron becomes the first player in the history of Major League Baseball to sign a $200,000 contract.

Have a safe and happy celebration everyone! Me, I think I'm going to go celebrate my 8th leap year by doing some spring cleaning! ... Take care all, and until next time...

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Thursday, February 28, 2008


"Garfield Minus Garfield"

Who would have guessed that when you remove lovable Garfield from the Garfield comic strips, the result is an even better comic about schizophrenia, bipolor disorder, and the empty desperation of modern life? Strange, but true. Meet Jon Arbuckle. Let's laugh and learn with him on a journey deep into the tortured mind of an isolated young man (sans his sarcastic feline friend), as he fights a losing battle against loneliness in a quiet American suburb.

Surprisingly, without Garfield, it's still an amusing comic! Poor, poor Jon.

-Jon

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"Time for Baseball!"

Baseball is back! Whoohoooo! Today was the Milwaukee Brewers first game of Spring Training. Granted, they're playing down in Arizona -- where it's nice and warm -- but that just means we have one more month before they open up the regular season here in Milwaukee. I can't wait!

Oh, and by the way... they won. :)

"Ryan Braun, Prince Fielder and Brewers pound out 7-1 win over Athletics in opener"

-Jon

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"T-Shirt Thursday: Occupation T-Shirts"

In an effort to show off some of my popular (or new) t-shirts, artwork, and gift ideas exclusive to my online store, Jon Baas Designs, I've decided to feature a few of them here on my blog every Thursday. I call it, "T-Shirt Thursday". Feel free to comment, and enjoy!

Today's Featured Designs:
(click on each image to see available products)

Genius T-shirtsHottie T-shirtsSingle T-shirts

More T-shirts & Gifts: .... Occupation T-shirts .... About Me T-shirts

And for those of you who like to shop, weekly sales and coupons are available on the front page of my store. Feel free to use them for special discounts!

Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008


"Wednesday in Review"

Passed up an audition for "A Streetcar Named Desire" (personal reasons). Took most of the day off from work. Went for a walk (beautiful sunny day!). Watched the movie, "Stealth". Played the empire-building computer game, "Victoria". Somewhat sleepy. Going to bed early.

-Jon

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Tuesday, February 26, 2008


"Going Bananas"

Here's something useful: ... 20 facts about the natural healing power of bananas.
  • Before reaching for the insect bite cream, try rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana peel. Many people find it amazingly successful at reducing swelling and irritation.

  • Want a quick shine on your shoes? Take the inside of a banana peel, and rub it directly on your shoe. Finish with a dry cloth.

  • One of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened with honey. The banana calms the stomach, and with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels, while the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.

I always knew bananas were good for you. I just didn't realize they were this much of a multi-purpose remedy as well. I guess "a banana a day, keeps the doctor away!"

Have a wonderful Tuesday everyone!

-Jon

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"Fresh Flakes; Closer Goal"

More snow last night. Less than an inch. Season total: 76.1 inches.

-Jon

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Monday, February 25, 2008


"Quote of the Day"

"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around."
-- Leo Buscaglia

-Jon

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"Back to Iraq"

As of this morning, my younger brother Ben (Lcpl, U.S. Marines), has left his California base near San Diego, and is returning to Iraq. This will be his second tour of duty in the war-torn country. Last I heard, this time around, he'll be on patrol just north of Baghdad.

God speed, Ben. You're in my prayers.

-Jon

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Saturday, February 23, 2008


"Smoke on the Water"

I'm a big fan of 80's rock music. I also tend to enjoy some of the classic rock from the decade before. Granted, I was far too young in the 80's to be a fan, and I wasn't born yet in the 70's, but now that I've grown up... I've really come to appreciate the style. That said, one of my favorite rock songs happens to be "Smoke on the Water", by Deep Purple. Very much a classic! ... [video]

Well, I found something today that puts a whole new spin on that favorite rock song of mine. A very creative spin. I found a cover version -- played in ancient Japanese style by Ooedo No Hikeshi. Not only does it have that classic rock sound... it also has a Japanese twist! ... [video]

Feel free to take a listen, and let me know what you think!

-Jon

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"Beautiful Saturday"

It was a lovely day here in Milwaukee! The temperature was in the mid 30's, the sun was shining, and it felt very much like Spring. People were out jogging, washing their cars, and enjoying a "shorts and t-shirt" kinda day. But, it'll be short-lived. Come Monday, more snow is in the forecast, and this could be the stuff that puts us into the top ten snowiest winters.

At the moment, we still stand at 75.5 inches. The #10 spot on the list -- at 79.7 inches -- is held by the winter of 1951-52. Yep... almost there!

-Jon

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"Stump House"

Kevin McKinney built a treehouse for his two daughters on top of an 8 foot wide Giant Redwood stump. The house has a cantilevered porch, observation deck, sink, closet, and interior stalactites! McKinney is documenting the ongoing project in photographs.

-Jon

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Friday, February 22, 2008


"Movie Friday: "INSiDE"

Another Friday, another movie. This week my selection is titled, "INSiDE".

Today's film is a psychological short. A mental patient affected by a multiple personality disorder, is about to undertake an evaluation test. And his doctor wants to ask him a couple of questions...

Enjoy, and have a wonderful weekend everyone!

-Jon

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Thursday, February 21, 2008


"T-Shirt Thursday: Digital Landscapes"

In an effort to show off some of my popular (or new) t-shirts, artwork, and gift ideas exclusive to my online store, Jon Baas Designs, I've decided to feature a few of them here on my blog every Thursday. I call it, "T-Shirt Thursday". Feel free to comment, and enjoy!

Today's Featured Designs:
(click on each image to see available products)

NorwayPink and YellowMajestic

More T-shirts & Gifts: .... Digital Landscapes .... Jon Baas Art

And for those of you who like to shop, weekly sales and coupons are available on the front page of my store. Feel free to use them for special discounts!

Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008


"Alan Bean, Artist"

Apollo astronaut Alan Bean was the fourth man to walk on the moon (during the Apollo 12 mission in 1969). He is also the only artist to have visited another world, so his paintings of the moon have the authenticity of a true eyewitness. In 1981, Alan retired from NASA to devote time to his art. Here are some of his paintings, and the stories that accompany each one.

-Jon

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"Internet Game: CoBaCoLi"

Here's another fun little game. It's called CoBaCoLi, and it's sort of like billiards, except the object is to knock a ball against the line of the same color. Easy game, casual play. Enjoy!

-Jon

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008


"The Wisconsin Primary"

Today is a notable day here in Wisconsin politics. Today is the Wisconsin Primary, and this state's opportunity to select it's chosen candidates for the November Presidential election. I don't know yet if I'll vote this time around or not, but I will make a prediction nonetheless: Barack Obama will win on the Democratic side, and John McCain will take the Republican vote.

I'll check back in later today and let you know how close I actually was. :)

Have a wonderful Tuesday everyone!

UPDATE: - (5:09 AM, Wednesday)
Yep. I was right. Obama won 58 percent of the Democratic vote over Hillary's 41. And John McCain, the Republican front-runner, took 55 percent of his party's vote. I have a feeling the Presidential election will be the same -- Barack Obama vs. John McCain.

"Obama wins Wis. primary, Hawaii caucus"

-Jon

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"Snow Watch"

According to the National Weather Service, our latest snowfall here in Milwaukee brings us up to a grand total of 75.5 inches. This is still outside the top ten snowiest winters, but we're almost there! Only four more inches to go.

-Jon

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Monday, February 18, 2008


"A Deeper Blanket"

Yesterday it rained. Today it's snowing -- heavily. And more snow means more shoveling. So, how much do you think we'll get this time? Will this put us onto the top ten list of snowiest winters in Milwaukee history? Top five? Even higher? Stay tuned! :)

-Jon

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"The Number 28"

Today I celebrate two holidays: President's Day, and my 28th birthday. So, in honor of the latter, I thought I'd share a few things about the number 28. Enjoy!
  • 28 is the sum of the first five prime numbers: 2, 3, 5, 7, and 11.
  • 28 is the atomic number of nickel.
  • The planet Saturn revolves around the Sun in approximately 28 years.
  • 28 is the number of normal human teeth, not including wisdom teeth.
  • 28 is the number of dominoes in standard domino sets.
  • 28 is the postal code of the province of Madrid, in Spain.
  • Year 28 was a leap year starting on Thursday. 2008 is also a leap year.
  • One of the expected applicant cities for the 2028 Summer Olympics is Milwaukee.
  • The Roman numeral for 28 is: XXVIII.
  • Twenty Eight is a popular card game played in Kerala India.
  • On February 28, 1854, the Republican Party was organized in Ripon, Wisconsin.
  • Mickey Mouse was created in 1928.

-Jon

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Sunday, February 17, 2008


"Not As Expected"

It's raining right now, and steadily at that. We were predicted to get a few few inches of snow today, but instead it was too warm -- so it rained. I guess the main concern will be flooding as we start the new week, not more of the pretty white stuff. Go figure.

-Jon

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Friday, February 15, 2008


"Friday in Review"

Finished preparing an apartment for it's new occupant: some painting, some cleaning. Listened to Country music; sang along. Treated to lunch at "Shakey's" (Have you ever tried a baked apple dessert pizza! Mmmm!). Appreciated the sunny afternoon. Came home; napped.

-Jon

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"Movie Friday: "EVOL"

Another Friday, another movie. This week my selection is titled, "EVOL".

Today's romantic-themed film is a cute one, and I think fitting, considering how yesterday was Valentine's Day. Only five minutes long, it tells the story of a couple who spot each other across a crowded street and fall in love. And although everyone else in the world around them moves backwards, the couple moves forward as they find each other. Very well done!

Enjoy, and have a wonderful weekend everyone!

-Jon

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Thursday, February 14, 2008


"Valentine's Day Recap"

Today was Valentine's Day, and I didn't really do too much of the romantic sort. But then again, that tends to be the case when you're single, right? I can't complain, though. Maybe next year the story will be completely different. :)

I did participate in that murder mystery, though (see news page). That was fun!

The whole event was hosted as if it were a wedding reception. The food was catered, everyone came dressed up (men in suits; women in nice dresses; bride in wedding gown!), and there was a cake too. We ate by candlelight, there were flowers, dancing, the whole works. Very romantic. I played the best man, so I had the honor of sitting at the table with the wedding party. And while I was playing a character, it was also the closest I've ever come to being in a wedding party.

About 50 people came, and there were about 25 participants (playing characters). The event was hosted in the Lutheran chapel/student center just across the street from the UW-Milwaukee campus -- so we actually had a "hall" of sorts to complete the setting. And with the lights dimmed, our characters ready to shine, and a "murder" to solve, the stage was set.

The night started out with the entrance and introduction of our characters. Mine, as it just so happened, had been blackmailed (by the bride) into dating her cousin -- rather than the woman he had given his heart to. So, to protect his true love, out of intense feelings of guilt, and not quite sure what really happened leading up to the blackmail, my character arrived at the wedding with his girlfriend of three months -- the cousin. Of course, as you can probably guess, my character's true love was also in attendance... and it was the bride who was murdered.

But everything worked out pretty well. With the bride out of the way, I was free to give my heart back to my character's one true love -- and I did. And since I was standing right next to the "happy couple" (giving my best man speech) when the bride was shot, I was off the hook as the killer. As we later discovered, it was actually the groom's older brother who pulled the trigger (something about insurance policies and the like).

It was a fun evening, and a great opportunity to do a little improv acting. I hope I get to be part of something like this again. And maybe next time... I'll get to be the bad guy! Whoohooo! :)

Have a wonderful Friday all... and Happy Valentine's Day!

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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"Quote of the Day"

"I don't understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine's Day. When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon."
-- Unknown

-Jon

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"T-Shirt Thursday: Love T-shirts"

In an effort to show off some of my popular (or new) t-shirts, artwork, and gift ideas exclusive to my online store, Jon Baas Designs, I've decided to feature a few of them here on my blog every Thursday. I call it, "T-Shirt Thursday". Feel free to comment, and enjoy!

Today's Featured Designs:
(click on each image to see available products)

Love is Patient T-shirtsLove is Forgiving T-shirtsLove is Unconditional T-shirts

More T-shirts & Gifts: .... Love T-shirts .... About Me T-shirts

And for those of you who like to shop, weekly sales and coupons are available on the front page of my store. Feel free to use them for special discounts!

Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008


"The Snow Continues"

It snowed again. With the 6.4 inches that fell yesterday, Milwaukee now sits at a total seasonal snowfall of 74.6 inches -- it's 13th highest. As soon as we get 5.4 more inches, this will become one of the top ten snowiest winters in Milwaukee history. And winter is still far from over.

Right now, it's a beautiful sunny day. Current temperature, 19°F. Tomorrow, however, the snow returns, and we'll probably get another 1-2 inches. Sigh.

"Snowfall totals inch toward historic"

-Jon

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"Internet Game: Drag the Dot"

Here's a fun little Flash game... It's called Drag the Dot, and the object is simple: drag the tiny dot to safety, while avoiding a variety of moving obstacles. It's not as easy as it sounds! Enjoy!

-Jon

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Monday, February 11, 2008


"Why I Love Wisconsin"

After all that snow here in Milwaukee, now it's downright frigid. So, in honor of the chilly weather, I thought I'd share a little poem I came across. It sums up the season quite nicely!
It's winter in Wisconsin
And the gentle breezes blow,
70 miles per hour at 52 below!
Oh, how I love Wisconsin
When the snow's up to your butt.
You take a breath of winter air
And your nose is frozen shut.
Yes, the weather here is wonderful,
I guess I'll hang around.
I could never leave Wisconsin,
'Cause I'm frozen to the ground.

Have a wonderful Monday all! And until next time,

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Friday, February 08, 2008


"Blessed From Above"

Guess what... It's snowing again. Just after I finish digging out from our massive snowfall, God opens the storehouses of heaven, and lets a little more out. Not only does He have a wonderful sense of humor, I think He likes keeping me on my toes too!

-Jon

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Thursday, February 07, 2008


"Parting the White Sea"

The day has come to a close, and I've finally dug out from under all this snow. My landlord actually stopped by earlier this evening, and he helped me clear off the rest of the sidewalks, as did my roommate, Scott. I kind of felt like Moses parting the Red Sea, though. On both sides of the cleared sidewalk(s) there are now walls of snow higher than knee-deep -- sometimes as much as two feet in places. And that's NOT due to snowbanks.

Yeah, we've got a lot of fresh snow on the ground right now. Maybe I should think about taking some time to go out and PLAY in it for a change!

-Jon

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"T-Shirt Thursday: Fruit T-shirts"

In an effort to show off some of my popular (or new) t-shirts, artwork, and gift ideas exclusive to my online store, Jon Baas Designs, I've decided to feature a few of them here on my blog every Thursday. I call it, "T-Shirt Thursday". Feel free to comment, and enjoy!

Today's Featured Designs:
(click on each image to see available products)

Grape T-shirtsCherry T-shirtsBanana T-shirts

More T-shirts & Gifts: .... Fruit T-shirts .... Women's T-shirts

And for those of you who like to shop, weekly sales and coupons are available on the front page of my store. Feel free to use them for special discounts!

Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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"There's a Sidewalk Here Somewhere"

The snowfall totals from yesterday's storm are out: In my neighborhood, we got 14.2 inches! And that's not counting the foot or so already on the ground, the new drifts blown by the wind, or the snow banks created by passing plows. Yeah, we got buried, and we got buried good.

As the guy who shovels the sidewalks at my apartment (public and private), I'm supposed to have them all cleared by morning. Unfortunately, that's just not going to happen. We got too much snow, and far too much to clear in one sitting. I did what I could, I'm exhaused, now I need sleep. What remains... will probably be an all-day project.

If you're in the area later today, and you wanna give me a hand, I'd be very grateful. I'll even save you a nice big mug of hot apple cider! Mmmmm... strenuous workout, and a hot steamy beverage. The perfect winter combination!

Have a safe and beautiful Thursday everyone!

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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Wednesday, February 06, 2008


"Snowed In; Digging Out"

The snow has finally stopped falling. It was supposed to let up by 6pm (CST), but instead, kept coming until around 9pm. And, as expected, we've surpassed the 60 inches mark. Since December 1, 2007, we've had 43 days of snow totaling 64.4 inches -- 35 inches above normal.

Earlier this evening (as of about 6:45pm), Milwaukee had already received 11.5 inches of new snow. Just southwest of the city, Beloit clocked in at a whopping 21 inches!

And if that doesn't put things into perspective, today's storm closed Mitchell International Airport at 1pm (due to visibility issues), forced snowplow operators off the runways due to intense falling and drifting snow, and stopped all flights not long after. Even the Milwaukee County Transit Service stopped service, as -- after 5pm -- 23 of their buses were reported stuck in the snow.

And how about this: my roomate's place of employment -- a local Office Depot store -- also closed early due to the snow. So did all four of the major malls in the area (rarely ever does that happen!). And opening night for the touring Broadway production of "The Lion King"?... Canceled. Heck, even the massive Milwaukee courthouse was closed down!

Yeah, we got some serious snow today. Some SERIOUS snow!

"Ground to a halt"

"WeatherBlog: Winter Storm"

-Jon

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Tuesday, February 05, 2008


"The Never-Ending Winter"

It's snowing again. And although it's just beginning, this storm will be our worst yet. Here in Milwaukee we're predicted to get 10-16 inches by this time tomorrow, and that's on top of the foot or so already on the ground. Unfortunately, this'll be the heavy white stuff -- a bit of a pain to shovel.

So far this winter, Milwaukee has received 52.8 inches of snow. We haven't seen a season with over 60 inches in over ten years. This storm, however, will probably put us well over that mark. And the scary thing is, winter isn't over yet.

-Jon

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"Wisdom of the Day"
Being happy doesn't mean everything is perfect. It means you've decided to look beyond the imperfections and see what resides beneath. No matter how hard you may wish for it, you'll never find happiness unless YOU choose to create it.

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Monday, February 04, 2008


"Grand Central Station on Pause"

Over 500,000 people rush through Grand Central Station every day. But on a cold New York Saturday, the world's largest train station came to a sudden halt. Over 200 Improv Everywhere Agents froze in place at the same exact second, and stood there silent for five minutes. Commuters and tourists stopped to notice what was happening around them. ... [video]

-Jon

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"Kitten and Bird"

Your cute of the day. A little kitten and his/her birdie friend. Awwww!

-Jon

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Sunday, February 03, 2008


"A Super Giants Win"

Wow! I'm not much of a football fan, but I will have to admit, today's Super Bowl was an amazing contest. A true nail-biter, and one for the history books! I didn't watch the whole game -- only the last five minutes (game time) -- but that about was all I needed to see. :)

In one of the biggest upsets in Super Bowl history, the New York Giants clawed their way to a 17-14 win, and shattered the New England Patriot's unblemished season. And they did it all with an unexpected comeback in the last 35 seconds!

With the Patriot's loss, the 1972 Miami Dolphins remain the only team in NFL history to have played a perfect undefeated season.

"Giants prevent perfect season, beating Patriots 17-14"

-Jon

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Saturday, February 02, 2008


"SpotHopping"

SpotHopping chronicles the traveling adventures of Mike and Hilary. Shortly after they got married, they decided to quit their jobs, pack up their tiny New York City apartment, put everything they owned into an 80-square-foot locker, and go see the world.

To get a better understanding of where they've been in their travels so far, you might want to start at the beginning of the trip. It's quite a fascinating adventure! Enjoy!

-Jon

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"The Brothers Brick"

I've always loved the creativity that building with LEGO offers, so, naturally, I find this blog (and new addition to my regular reads) to be very interesting: The Brothers Brick. If you enjoy/ed building with LEGO's, then you might enjoy it too!

-Jon

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Friday, February 01, 2008


"No Movie Friday Today"

Sorry folks. Due to technical difficulties, we're going to have to skip this week's "Movie Friday". But fear not, I'll develop a work-around so we can have my usual feature back again next week.

Stay tuned. More movies to come!

-Jon

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"Push, Lift, Toss. Repeat."

More snow. I just came back in from shoveling, and I'd say we got about 4-6 inches. Monday it was in the mid 40's; rain melted the snow. Tuesday and Wednesday it was back below zero; too cold to snow. And now Thursday and Friday we're back up in the 20's... and it snows again.

I tell ya, this winter flip-flops worse than the Presidential debates!

Now that I'm inside, though, I think I'm going to go grab a warm shower, have some hot tea, and head to bed. I have to be up early to shovel again, and then paint an apartment. Busy, busy!

UPDATE: - (10:14 AM)
Another inch of snow (at the very least) greeted me when I woke up this morning. And it's still falling, although lightly. When I get back from painting, I'll have to finish a few areas, and probably re-shovel what I just cleared. It's exhausting work, but at least I'll sleep well tonight. :)

Have a wonderful Friday all, and until later,

Your happily blogging friend,
-Jon

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"Quote of the Day"

"Faith is not simply a patience that passively suffers until the storm is past. Rather, it is a spirit that bears things -- with resignations, yes, but above all, with blazing, serene hope."
-- Corazon Aquino

-Jon

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Jon Baas

Blogging Since 2002!
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Blogs That I Read:
- ProBlogger
- Seth Godin
- The Brothers Brick
- Trek Movie
- Wil Wheaton

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Performance / Theater:
- Improv Everywhere


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