Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Austin, TX: Days Five and Six

We were too lazy to even take a picture on Monday. With all the running around the previous four days, we opted to veg in our hotel room. We ventured out once to eat at Shady Grove where Jamye had the Hippie Chick sandwich and I tried the Airstream Chili with a side salad... OK, and some onion rings (vacation's not over yet). We then rushed back to the room to take a nap.

We roused ourselves later to surf the web, paddle about and watch the Golden Globes. When Gwyneth Paltrow (whom we do not like for various reasons... 1-1a-2-3) came out in her ghastly maternity frock to present the Cecil B. Demille Award to Anthony Hopkins I phoned in an order at the Mr. Gatti's Pizza down the road. Haven't had Mr. Gatti's since I was in high school. It was just as I remembered it. That's a good thing.

On Tuesday morning, I was up pretty early by vacation standards. I had a sitdown scheduled with Mike Rollins, the President of the Austin Chamber of Commerce, at 10 am to discuss some possible job leads, and I left Jamye behind to make our final preparations to return to Nashville that afternoon. Upon my return to the hotel, we checked out, loaded the car, made one more stop at Texadelphia for lunch (see the link below), drove to the airport, dropped off the rental car, checked our bags, boarded the plane, flew, landed, got off the plan, picked up our bags, got on a shuttle bus, got off a shuttle bus, got in our car, drove home, unloaded the car, watched TV, drank a couple of Miller Lites, unpacked (actually Jamye did that) and generally dreaded getting back to work today.

So, here we are. Back in Nashville. It snowed last night, naturally, and I vaguely recalled wearing shorts and a tee shirt the day before. I tried not to think about that as I scraped the snow from our windshield this morning while the car was warming up.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Austin, TX: Day Four

Late start. First stop was Z Tejas with Fred and Rebecca for brunch/lunch/what have you. That's it above. Then, it was off to the Co-op (The UT Bookstore). It was packed full of students buying books and folks getting their commemorative gear before the National Championship celebration at the Darrell K Royal Texas Memorial Stadium. We left before Jamye broke out into hives.

We then met back up with Ward at Opal Divine's for one more pow wow and a couple of drinks, and as time had started to slip away before Fred and Rebecca had to hit the road, we hit Texadelphia for dinner. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. After that, we begrudgingly took Fred and Rebecca back to their car and saw them off before Jamye and I headed back upstairs and spent the rest of the evening watching TV.

Boring, huh?

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Austin, TX: Day Three

I didn't take the picture on the left, but I could have ;) We were there after our return visit to Curra's, and we were also here and here. In between, we went down to Run Tex, a specialty running store on South First. Rebecca and Fred bought some stuff to facilitate their New Year's resolutions.

At the last place, I got the high score on their Ms. Pac Man. I had a great burger too, and Jamye and I split cheese fries.

We might get some rain here today or tomorrow. They need it.

Finally, I'll wrap up this quick post with a question: Anyone ever heard of Cedar Fever?

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Austin, TX: Day Two

A Central Texas sunset from our hotel room window in South Austin.

OK, let's recap. Our Austin realtor, Ward, met us at the hotel a little before 11 and we hit the road to look at houses. We saw a total of 5 in the South Austin area (MLS area 10), and the last 3 really piqued our interest. Check them out here.

1808 Pannier Lane

6304 Berkeley Cove

5507 Kings Highway

Can you guess which one was our favorite?

After our last stop we headed to Curra's Grill South for a late lunch. For comments and a link to their website click here. I had the Enchiladas Curras (filled with monterey jack cheese and topped with carne guisada) and Jamye had Enchiladas Chile Colorado. Great salsa and queso. We're going back today when Fred and Rebecca get here. Apparently, Fred had a late night at the club last night. They just left Corsicana an hour ago. *yawn*

After Curra's Grill, Ward took us to Mother Egan's where he works four shifts a month. We got introduced to a lot of people before Ward took us back to the hotel by way of Opal Divine's. After that, Jamye and I promptly ran down the street and grabbed Whataburgers for dinner which we ate in bed while watching TV.


Friday, January 13, 2006

Austin, TX: Day One (continued)

A northbound view on South Congress which terminates at the State Capitol there in the distance. This is SoCo. Funky little shops and restaurants line both sides of this street that slices through the trendy heart of South Austin. Jamye and I landed at Doc's Motorworks to kill a couple of hours before our first appointment. She had a Stella and a Lone Star. I had two Shiner Blondes. We played Shuffleboard. I won. Handily.

Last night we went to Opal Divine's - Penn Field, where I had a bowl of Texas Chili and a pint of the local Live Oak Pilz. Jamye had the Divine Quesadilla (which she shared with me) and a Live Oak Ale, we both annihilated a basket of Cracked Pepper Fries served with Dill Ranch. I ordered a Fat Tire Amber to put out the fire from the Chili, and after finishing that, we headed straight back to the hotel and crashed. Long day. I even left out one of the funniest parts, but maybe Jamye will fill y'all in on that.

It's Friday morning (Day Two), and Jamye just woke up alittle while ago. We're going to look at a few houses with the realtor we met with yesterday at Shady Grove. His name's Ward. I'm sure you'll be hearing more about that later.


Thursday, January 12, 2006

Austin, TX: Day One

Goodbye Nashville.
Hello Austin.
Yeah, it was awfully cloudy this morning in Austin, but it turned into a gorgeous day. Upper 70s. Sunny. Shady Grove. Texas Martini. Just one.

Anyway, we're goin' to eat dinner now. Don't know where yet. We'll let you know.

We're Off... Again

In fact, we leave in thirty minutes for the airport to fly to Austin, TX, home of the National Champion Texas Longhorns. Look for updates from (clap clap clap clap) deep in the heart of Texas.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Team Angelina

I'm sure if you have a pulse, you've probably already heard about this today.
And seeing as how (Hollywood-crazed society that we really are) we've all been waiting for the other shoe to drop......and there it is:
Brad and Angelina are having a baby.

Sure, I feel just as horrible for poor, little Jennifer as the next gal who has ever been dumped for another woman. But, come on! I just can't help but think that this was all--in the fate of Hollywood standards--inevitable.

Angelina is dangerous territory. Not that she can help it, she's a goddess.
Simple fact. What man on the planet doesn't think she's just the coolest?
She's independent (men are apparently attracted to this trait in women), gorgeous, has a body to die for (men are apparently attracted to this trait in women as well), tattooed, and does things that make you raise an eyebrow and wonder if it was cool or whack, AND she's a frickin' goodwill ambassador for the U.N. for crying out loud, so she can therefore play the Mother Teresa card as well. What's not to like? I mean, no offense Jennifer, but what have you done for me lately? Brad probably knew he was treading on thin ice going into the making of Mr. and Mrs. Smith and decided to go ahead with the movie anyway. So much for marital loyalty. Jennifer probably never stood a chance. Not that I consider Angelina a homewrecker at all. Women should know better--beware the Angelina. Angelina is a man magnet. Angelina adopts children in need. Angelina is a force to be reckoned with. Angelina is more a state of mind, than tangible flesh and bone.

Just so long as they don't name their kid Apple or Capone, I will remain on Team Angelina.

A Link from Link to Link

So I spent a lot of time this weekend playing The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker with my 7-year-old niece, Morgan... effectively avoiding some quality time with the rest of the family, but really, how often can you say that you and your niece figured out how to escape a prison cell, swing across chasms and learn how to use a sword and shield?

Having bought the game for Morgan, I had a bit of vested interest in the content and whether or not it would strike a chord with her. Sure, it had gotten critical raves when it came out almost 3 years ago, but would a sword and sorcery game featuring a towheaded little boy in a green outfit be greeted favorably by my Barbie-crazed niece? Thankfully, moments after inserting the game, Jamye reported to me that it appeared to be a hit.

I strolled into the room and watched the girls play for awhile and tried to feign disinterest as I watched this little green guy scoot across a tropical island chasing pigs, but the more I watched, the more I wanted to play too. Soon Morgan handed me her little pink controller, and I was off to the races: learning to fight, boarding a pirate ship, sneaking about under barrels, etc. etc. etc. To be honest, I think Morgan was more than happy to have me play in her stead as some of the challenges became a little too difficult for her, and I have to say, I was glad to oblige.

Truly, I've never played anything like this game. Every corner of it seemed to be jam packed full of imaginative details and small bits of whimsy. Yeah, that's right guys, I got hooked on a kids game. An E for Everyone game. A game where villains disappear in a cloud of smoke when vanquished. Wanna make something of it? In a time when games geared towards adults who grew up playing video games continue to get louder and more violent, this game reminded me of what video games used to be: escapist fun.

p.s. for Morgan. If you get stuck in the game, click on the purple picture of Link above to get help.

What my Husband Got Me for Christmas

And I soooooo LOVE it. It's the 12-inch G4 PowerBook with SuperDrive! Complete with Dashboard--my new favorite hobby.
And seeing as how I've been getting so many requests from my fans to add more posts of my own,
this will obviously help.

It's no MacBook Pro, which Jon has been drooling over ever since Apple unveiled it earlier yesterday morning, but really.
What else could a girl ask for?

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Out with the Old. In with the New... Baby.

So, Jamye and I went down to Florida last weekend for New Year's and finally got to see that little Disabantonio kid in person. At nine weeks old, he wasn't exactly doing cartwheels, but he was fun to hang out with nonetheless. We even got to get him out on the town to the Villages of Baytowne Wharf in Destin for a couple of hours before he started to protest. To be honest, I wasn't that thrilled with the place either. It lacked character, and I think Joey sensed it. I think he's gonna be more of a McGuire's type... especially with that red hair he's gonna have. His red-headed momma took the picture above.

The Texas Longhorns are Invincible!

The Texas Longhorns defeated the mighty Southern California Trojans last night in what was probably one of the best college football games I have ever witnessed. This National Championship Rose Bowl was everything the sportswriters and analysts have been saying it would be for months. The only thing that most of them got wrong was the winner. As most people were ready to crown USC the greatest college football team ever, the Longhorns spoiled the Trojan's run at an unprecedented third straight national championship by beating them 41-38 in their own backyard.

Texas Quarterback Vince Young, the game's MVP, piled up 200 yards rushing to go with 267 yard passing and account for 467 of Texas' 556 yards of offense. As he routinely knifed through Trojan defenders in the second half, I began to hope that the Tennessee Titans could use their number three pick in the NFL draft to bring him to Nashville and learn Offensive Coordinator Norm Chow's system under his mentor, Steve McNair. Of course, Young has yet to declare his intentions to enter the draft and forego his senior season, but one wonders if, like Matt Leinart decided last year, he'll feel like he still has more to prove in the college game. If he does return, it would be for a run at the Heisman and back-to-back championships. If he leaves, he will have his detractors in draft pundits who look at Matt Leinart as the second coming of Joe Montana and Young as a raw and undisciplined talent with an unorthodox throwing motion. Young, the first quarterback in NCAA history to throw for 3000 yards and rush for 1000 yards in a single season, will prove them all wrong. The only question is, "When?"