Taking a break to give thanks

Ready for Thanksgiving

It’s good to stop and to a break from the normal activities (and normal blogging, even.) We hosted both of my parents over at our house for Thanksgiving this past week and also my sister and her husband. And God bless her, my grandmother made it too. It was truly unbelieveable to watch her climb our stairs into our house when it wasn’t that long ago she had broken her hip. Most people never walk again after something like that and here she was standing in our house. Now, that’s something to be thankful for.

Adriene was the perfect hostess. The house was immaculately decorated and her desserts were amazing. It’s so funny to see how much she’s changed since I’ve married her. I never would have imagined her as such the cook and homemaker. She’s beautiful in a totally different way than when we first started dating, but nonetheless still beautiful. That’s something else to be thankful for.

I’m recharged and ready for my favorite time of year. The Christmas decorations are getting dragged out and soon we’ll be heading up to Nashville for another crazy weekend with people I barely know. That, also will be a time to be thankful for.

An Unintentional Cupid

Time for another dating story, but this one isn’t about me.

Way back in the summer of 1996, David, Stephen, and I were once again going to the local Christian music festival called AtlantaFest. The festival was held at Six Flags Over Georgia for four days and we spent the four days “camping” at the grounds. By “camping”, I mean we parked our car in a big open field, set up a tent, and then baked in the hot July sun for four days. We did this for many years and finally stopped when I realized that all we talked about while we were “camping” is how miserable we were sitting in the hot sun for four days.

Let’s stay on topic, though. At this particular year, we had set up camp and were sitting in our chairs under our tarp when we noticed a commotion at another campsite. Two girls were standing outside of a car and fussing loudly about something. Apparently they had locked themselves out of their car. One of the girls, a diminutive red-head looked at us and said, “well, are you going to sit there and watch or are you going to help us?” We sat there slack-jawed. I guess we had been caught. We walked over to their car to see if we could help. At some point, the car did get unlocked. (Either we slim-jimmed the lock or called a locksmith, or somebody smarter came along and figured out how to get in the car, I can’t remember) We ended up spending the entire festival with the two girls having all sorts of good, clean fun.

It turned out that they lived in West Palm Beach, Florida. A couple of months later, Stephen decided he wanted to fly down to Florida to spend a weekend with the girls (I think he liked one of the girls.) I agreed to go with him because after all, I was on a break with my girlfriend and the prospect of spending a weekend with two girls sounded just dandy to me, plus having lived in Florida only months earlier, this would give me a chance to reunite with old friends.

We had a great time that weekend and before we left to fly home I said, “let me call some of my friends from Delray Beach and Boca Raton and we can all do dinner together before I fly home.” Little did I know what trouble I had started. At the dinner, Michelle, the red-headed girl, and my friend Ryan spent the entire evening looking at each other doe-eyed and cracking jokes to make each other laugh. Only a couple weeks later, I got a call from Ryan and Michelle saying they were dating each other. Now that was totally unexpected! Had I never flown down to Florida and never called the two different groups to have dinner together, they might never have met.

Fast forward a couple years later to 1998, on another visit to south Florida (I loved going to south Florida to visit, it has been way too long since I’ve been down there, excluding the short time I was there before and after our most recent cruise), Ryan and Michelle told me they were getting married and wanted me to be in their wedding. I was thrilled. They also told me that they would be setting me up with one of the bridesmaids. Um, thanks. I guess they felt they owed me.

I drove down to Ocala, Florida for the wedding and had a fun weekend laughing about my days living in Boca Raton and working for IBM. I met the bridesmaid we talked for a while at the wedding, but while she was a nice girl, she was very quiet and frankly I wasn’t ready to take on another long distance relationship. Besides, I had some opportunities back home I wanted to explore further, including one rising sophmore who was spending her summer in Savannah, but I’ll never forget that hot, muggy weekend in Ocala.

Ryan and Michelle have been married for seven years now and have two (maybe three? I haven’t heard from them in a while.) beautiful children of their own now. I always smile when I think that I inadvertantly played a part in their family.

U2 at Philips Arena


City of Blinding Lights
I Will Follow
Still Haven’t Found
Beautiful Day
Original of the Species
Sometimes you Can’t Make it On Your Own
Love and Peace or Else
Sunday Bloody Sunday
Bullet The Blue Sky
Miss Sarajevo
Pride in the Name of Love
Where the Streets Have no Name

Until the End of the World
Mysterious Ways
With or Without You

First Time
Stuck in a Moment

This show was amazing. This was the second show that Adriene and I have seen on the Vertigo tour and while it was amazing to be on the floor in Chicago, (I can’t wait to buy the DVD and see if I can find myself in the crowd!) we were in an ideal location at this show as we were able to see everything going on and see the impressive light display. The consensus has been that this show was the more lively of the two shows in Atlanta this weekend and based on the crowd noise and the performance of the band, I would not be suprised if that were true.

“Until The End of the World” was one of the highlights of the concert and I particularly enjoyed “Miss Sarajevo.” I thought it was poignant and I was surprised at Bono’s ability to imitate Luciano Pavaratti’s part in the song. Bono sang Happy Birthday to local Atlanta mogul Ted Turner and praised his philantropic efforts. He also specifically mentioned local Atlanta band Third Day when talking about the One Campaign. He also decided on the spot to play “MLK” as the King family was in attendance at the show.

When we got in the car at the end of the night, we turned on the radio and switched it from Dave FM (which played exclusively U2 all weekend, including b-sides and live stuff… two thumbs way up to Dave FM) to the sports station to hear that Georgia Tech had upset Miami in the Orange Bowl 14-10. That was the icing on the cake for the evening.

Stumbling into The Horseshoe in Little Havana

It’s hard to write about Georgia Tech football after a week like this. Suffice it to say, this is probably the lowest week I can ever remember and the worst I’ve ever felt about Tech sports. (And that includes the 1994 season when the football team bottomed out.)

I’ve been writing these little essays about my memories about Tech football, which soon may no longer officially exist. That’s the part that hurts the worst. I guess I’ll carry the memories of the 1999 Gator Bowl, the unbelieveable win at Clemson in 2000, the upset at NC State, or the 51-48 win over Georgia in my mind, even if they aren’t on the record books. The leaves me with a very heavy heart. I can take losses, but when institution ineptness costs your school records and scholarships, that’s just embarassing. Nonetheless, let’s talk about Miami.

The story goes that the Miami-Georgia Tech game of 1955 is the first ever game to be televised nationally in color. Tech enjoyed a 6-2 record over Miami when they met for the first time in 22 years at the 2000 Gator Bowl. I went to the game with Adriene and her parents and we saw a Miami team that was rebounding fast back into its glory years. We saw Joe Hamilton’s last game on that unusally warm day and it wasn’t enough to stop the Hurricanes.

Now that Miami is in the ACC, Tech and Miami will be playing each other regularly. It may take a while to pull an upset off against Miami. Hopefully Georgia Tech won’t be as fruitless against them as they have that other Florida school.

redsavior Interview

One of my closest friends in the world is the subject of an interview on TastyFresh. TastyFresh is the internet electronic magazine and forum site for Christian dance and techno music. His work has improved by leaps and bounds since his first demos (“it sounds like background music for an NES game” – Jeff’s first review of David’s music) and it continues to flourish in quality and popularity. Maybe someday you’ll hear it in the background of some movie or some video game.

I’m actually mentioned in the interview, see if you can spot me!