The Daily Bongo
Saturday, September 30, 2006 -- AfternoonMarc-Andre Fleury is going to be in net tonight when the Pens meet the Buffalo Sabres for the second time in two nights. The Pens lost last night in overtime. Final score 4-3. Fleury is in a battle to keep his job because his level of play hasn't been as good as the other goalies in the pre-season. The management admits that Fleury is the franchise goalie of the future, but they want to win games now. How this will work on Fleury's psyche is anyone's guess, but he seems a fairly stable sort of kid. The only question that I have is whether Jocelyn Thibault and Dany Sabourin are that much better. I think that the deciding element is that if Fleury is sent down to the minors, they don't have to worry about him going on waivers and having someone else grab him. That would be the case with Thibault and Sabourin. Meanwhile, there is no new news on Evgeni Malkin. He was skating on his own before team practice yesterday, and is expected to go to Buffalo and practice with the team, even though he won't play. The Pens should have more news about his condition and possible return next week.
Malkin is lucky that his injury doesn't seem that bad. Jaromir Jagr just played in his first game since he had surgery five months ago for a dislocated shoulder. The recovery time for that type of injury is long, and there is always the risk that the shoulder will be in weaker condition and more susceptible to reinjury. The New York Rangers lost their exhibition game, and word is not firm on whether Jagr will play in the season opener.
Friday, September 29, 2006 -- Late AfternoonI didn't post yesterday because I was under the weather. It was a rainy day, and I had a very bad headache. I don't know if it really classifies as a migraine, but it was sharp pain on one side of my head that wouldn't go away even with pain medication. I am much better now. Unfortunately, my boyfriend is really sick with the cold that I had earlier that lead to my headache. That means we won't be going to the Pens exhibition game this evening. We have to be in tip top shape for next Thursday's home opener.
I caught up with Survivor: Cook Islands. The racial experiment is over after only two episodes and the tribes are merged into two larger tribes. The whole race bit was abit of a bust to me so far. I wish that it went on abit longer. Anyway, read my recap to get all the details.
The Here We Go Steelers song is being rewritten. Well at least a lyric is being rewritten. There was abit that alluded to the fact that this year would be the one for the thumb. Since we now have that the lyric is outdated. The composer/performer, Roger Wood, let the Post Gazette hold a contest and the line, "The Steelers Nation has the best fans. We're from Pittsburgh the five-time Super Bowl champs" won the contest with 45.8 percent of the vote.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006 -- EveningNow we hear a different story about Terrell Owens. T.O. is saying that he didn't attempt suicide or have an allergic reaction. It seems that what happened is that he took some of his pain medicine, hydrocortisone, and a handful of his natural herbal/vitamin supplements and then became groggy and disoriented. He was not responsive to his publicist, Kim Etheredge. She called the paramedics because the pain medication bottle was empty she thought he took all of the pills. Meanwhile, T.O. had the pills in another location. He wasn't really aware of what was going on, and may have answered yes to questions that he didn't really understand or know he was answering. As T.O. said, he's not depressed, and if he had taken 35 pills, he would have had his stomach pumped and it wasn't. So what is the truth? Who know! I imagine that you have to take T.O. at his word. It is creating quite a diversion for the Dallas Cowboys.
Dr. Dean Richardson gave an update on Barbaro's condition. It seems that a quarter of his hoof has grown by and that he is doing well. He has to regrow another three quarters of the hoof and the bottom of the foot has to get better. It could take up to six months for the hoof to regrow. The right leg is doing well, and the cast is still on the leg. It won't be changed just yet. Richardson will keep an eye on Barbaro's progress.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006 -- Late MorningI first heard something about Terrell Owens being rushed to the emergency room late last night. The only thing they said at the time was that Owens was made to throw up and that it was a reaction to the pain medication--an allergy. Well, this morning, we have a different story. It appears that Owens attempted suicide. It seems that he has been depressed since breaking his fourth metacarpal on his right hand (the ring finger). He has surgery to put in a plate and was taking pain medication. It appears that he took 35 pain pills last night. His publicist called the paramedics. When the paramedics arrived, Owens took more pills. No word at this point on how he is doing. It was quite a shock to me. When you think of T.O., you think of this bold, arrogant guy. You forget that he probably has the insecurities and doubts that we all have.
Tuesday, September 26, 2006 -- EveningI hate colds, sinus infections, or whatever it is I have. At this point, I am erroring on the side of a cold. The thing that I hate is that when I do get a cold, I am totally unable to breathe through my nasal passages. It really sucks because pseudoephedrine doesn't diddly squat. I'm even taking 120 mg of it. Steam makes it worse. So far, the only thing that has worked for the past two days is the sinus nasal spray, and I only have one more day left of that. Right now, I am trying the Breathe Right nasal strips. It's a tad better, but I will have to call the doctor tomorrow to find out what in the heck I can do. Not being able to breathe or sleep really does make you feel bad.
I read another Daniel Silva book. This one was The Confessor. This is the third in the Gabriel Allon series and the second in a three book set that the author wrote to address issues from World War II that linger to the current day. The first of the triology is The English Assassin which dealt with the role that the the Swiss government and banks played in the Nazis' ability to obtain money and art from Jewish citizens. The Confessor looks at the role that the Vatician played in the atrocities against the Jews. Pope Pius XII kept silent about the Holocaust and did not speak out to condemn the actions of the Nazis and nothing to encourage the Catholic Church to assist the Jews in escaping the fate of the concentration camps. In the book, which is a fictionalized account, the Church is even see as condoning the actions of the Nazis due to anti-Semetic feelings and that fear that the establishment of a Jewish state would give the Jews an equal footing with the Catholic church in world wide politics. Benjamin Stern, a member of the Mossad who worked with Gabriel Allon in the search and killing of the Munich terrorists in the 1970s, is writing a book about the actions of the Catholic Church when he is murdered in his apartment in Munich. Gabriel Allon, in the midst of a restoration on a Bellini in Venice, is set on the trail of the killer and finds that the path leads him into the inner sanctum of the Vatican and Crux Vera, a secret society that holds much power in the Vatican. In additional, the fictional pope in the book, Paul VII, is trying to have the secret archive of materials from WWII made public. Crux Vera opposes the release, and wants to stop the Pope from making a public apology for the Church's inaction at the Rome synagogue. As is usual with the Silva books, there is alot of tension as Gabriel hunts down the shadowy assassin, the Leopard, while he himself is hunted by Crux Vera and the Leopard. What is the secret about the Church that Ben Stern discovered? Will Gabriel discover the killer of Stern, and will he be able to save the Pope from assassination? Daniel Silva is an enthralling story teller who moves the reader from one high speed chase to the next. Silva does a great job of blending in information about the historic wrongs committed against the Jews with current investigations. The characters in the book are complex with Allon tortured by past actions and the attack that took the life of his young son and the soul from his wife. Silva also gives some insight to the villians of the piece. There aren't any cardboard figures here. Great book that I highly recommend. I can't wait to read the final book in the trilogy, Death in Vienna.
Monday, September 25, 2006 -- AfternoonThe Pens played another exhibition game last night against the Philadelphia Flyers last night and won by a score of 2-1. There wasn't any commentary on the game, and I had difficulty finding out the outcome. I suppose that the local sports reporters just aren't as interested in the Pens exhibition games. The Pens are going to spend the next four days (starting today) at West Point building team chemistry and training hard. I think that Michel Therrien was really disappointed in the team's conditioning when he took over last December and wants to avoid the same thing this year.
Good news for Evgeni Malkin. He does not need surgery on his shoulder. The damage isn't that bad, and it seems that Malkin will only be out for four to six weeks.
The sports talk shows after the Steelers game yesterday were filled with callers who wanted Ben Roethlisberger demoted and Charlie Batch starting the next game. That's a tricky one because although I think that Roethlisberger is rusty, I think that the rest of the team is contributing to the general stench of poor playing. Roethlisberger can throw the ball down the field as much as he wants, but if the receivers let it bounce off their hands, there's nothing that he can do. Our running game is poor. Willie Parker improved in yesterday's game with 21 carries for 133 yards, but for the three games it is 71 carries and 268 yards. That averages 3.77 yards per carry. Let's not even get started with the punt and kickoff returns. If we have anyone who can go out there, grab a football that is falling from the air, hold on to it, and run, we are keeping him in hiding! We had too many big changes over the off season and lost some folks were more important to our system than we realized. Too many folks are quick to call for the axe. I don't know how you can be a genius one day, and then an idiot the next. Don't get me wrong--I'm the first to bash a problem when I see it. I think that I was one of the first calling for the firing of Eddie O from the Pens. This time I think that people jumping the gun. It's only the third game of the season. Let's see how they are a month from now, and then talk. The Pittsburgh sports fan is very fickle and quick to change allegance. There was a hue and cry because Pittsburgh was 21st on the rank of cities based on loyalty of sports fans. Cleveland was first. No one could understand why the city was 21st. This is why! Give 'em a break guys!
Sunday, September 24, 2006 -- AfternoonThe Steelers play the Cincinnati Bengals this afternoon. Chad Johnson had been talking earlier this week about meeting the Steelers. Johnson is one of my favorites because he is so entertaining. He was saying things about the hit that he got last week and how he was sore from stitches in his chin, and not able to find his way home, and not able to eat solid food so he couldn't go to his favorite place, McDonald's, where he eats three times a day during the season. Johnson also said that he was going to meet Joey Porter at the 50 yard line to duke it out. Some folks actualle believed it, but they should know that Johnson was joking and buddies with Porter. Before the game, the two met at the 50 yard line and jawed at each other. It was a closely fought game, and came right down to the end. Interceptions and fumbles were the only real constant of the game, and in the end, the Steelers came out the losers with a final score of 28-20. Read my game recap.
Sunday, September 24, 2006 -- Late MorningThe Pens lost again last night to the Buffalo Sabres. This time, the Pens lost 3-2 in a shootout. Marc-Andre Fleury sat out this game, and Michel Therrien is expecting Fleury to pick up his game. It seems on Friday that Fleury only stopped 19 of 24 shots. Dany Sabourin played in goal last night, and he stopped 44 of 46 shots. This doesn't mean that Fleury is on his way out because he is only 21, but he does have a problem with focus and consistency. He is going to have to find a way to gain that to become the type of goal that everyone expects him to become.
Saturday, September 23, 2006 -- Late MorningThe Pens lost last night to the Washington Capitals. The score was tied at 4-4 at regulation, and the Capitals came on to win in overtime. It really sucks that the rest of the pre-season games won't be televised, but I will be going to next Friday's game and can see how the team looks. In other news, the Pens have purchased the last parcel of land that they will need to build their arena. Even though the new mayor, Luke Ravenstahl has been pushing hard to get the Pens to commit to Plan B, the plan that would require the Pens to fork out some of the money for the building of the arena, the Pens are sticking with the Isle of Capri plan. They have to do that. The Isle of Capri plan is the best deal for them. The Pens would get an arena at no cost if the Isle of Capri gets the slots license. If the Pens switch to commit to Plan B, then IF the Isle of Capri does get the license, they can say "no arena for the Pens because they backed out of the deal first." Of course, with the fix being in, Isle of Capri won't get the license.
Friday, September 22, 2006 -- Early EveningShana Tova! Happy New Year! This evening is Erev Rosh Hashanah, that means that it is the eve of the Jewish New Year. Everyone gathers at the synagogue and celebrate the start of the year with the blowing of the Shofar.
The local news and television sportscasters have been talking about Evgeni Malkin. The story is that he is going to be reevaluated next week, and that the plan is for him to have surgery. He might be out for three to six months. What we should all be glad about is that the injury isn't that bad. In fact, they were showing a clip of him in the locker room today, and he was holding his stick with his gloves on and bending the arm. Malkin looked good, although his lower lip looked abit swollen. While they were filming him, he winked and smiled at one of his fellow players. As Michel Therrien said, when he saw the accident, he was worried that it was much worse and that there was an injury to Malkin's neck. As Therrien said, this is much better than what it looked like at the time. The Pens are playing tonight, but the game isn't being broadcast on radio or television. It sucks because I had tickets for the game, but couldn't go because of Rosh Hashanah.
Thursday, September 21, 2006 -- EveningAnother episode of Survivor: Cook Islands was on this evening. It was rather interesting that the Aitu tribe would decide to throw a competition to get rid of the weakest member. That was Billy who was a chubby, lazy guy who didn't like to work, but thought that he should conserve his energy while the others worked and then eating the food that they gathered. Read the recap for more details.
Thursday, September 21, 2006 -- Early EveningFinally word has been released on what is the problem with Evgeni Malkin. His shoulder was dislocated and he will be out indefinitely. That is horrible news. John LeClair must be feeling really bad at this point, because he is the person who caused the accident. Yeah, I know that accident means that the finger of blame should not be pointed, but he has to be feeling bad. The other question that should be asked is should the Pens have been playing in an arena where the ice was in such bad condition because of the heat. Yeah, the NHL was promoting hockey, but that means the loss of Malkin for a possibly lengthy period. Other news is that Mark Recchi has a fractured cheek from a slashing that he got in the game. I really dislike Recchi, the locker room cancer and geriatric jerk. Sidney Crosby is going to be sitting out tomorrow night's exhibition game. The Pens don't want to risk losing Crosby to injury because he played in a pre-season game. That is really the problem with pre-season games. The players are at risk for little if any return.
Wednesday, September 20, 2006 -- EveningYesterday, I missed the Pens game on television because of a wine appreciation class that I am taking, but I am at home tonight watching the Pens play the Philadelphia Flyers in Moncton, New Brunswick. Evgeni Malkin is playing this evening, along with Sidney Crosby. Jocelyn Thibault is in the net for the Pens.
Sergei Gonchar scored the first goal for the Pens in the first minute of the period when the Pens had a five on three power play. While they are talking about the game, Paul Steigerwald lets us know that Malkin's nickname in the locker room is Gino--for Evgeni. Ryan Malone scored the second goal for the Pens. The team is looking good this evening. Not that it means much because it is the beginning of the game and pre-season. Jeff Carter scored an answering goal for the Flyers. The period ends with a score of 2-1.
A really scary moment for Malkin in the first two minutes of the game. He and John LeClair were coming down the ice. Malkin passed the puck to LeClair in front of the net and then circled to the back. LeClair missed the net, and then lost his footing coming behind the net because the temperature is so high in Moncton, and the ice is wet. LeClair was spreadlegged, and Malkin came up and tripped over him. Malkin came flying head first over LeClair, landing on his head and shoulders. Malkin just laid there for awhile, and from the way he fell, there was concern that he broke his neck. But then we saw Malkin moving his head, then arms, then legs. There was blood coming off of Malkin's head, and he was dangling his arm as he went off the ice. I really hope that Malkin is okay, but there is no word yet on how he was doing. Gonchar was at his side to translate for Malkin. You know, I try not to be anti-geriatric, but Malkin was keeping his feet. Why couldn't LeClair keep his feet--or at least make the beautifully setup goal? At 6:19, Gonchar scored his second goal of the night. Score is now Pens 3, Flyers 1. 15 minutes into the period, the Flyers score again to make the score 3-2. A minute later, the Flyers tie the game. At the end of the period, we found out that Malkin was taken to the hospital. LeClair was interviewed during the break, and it seems that Malkin was in alot of pain. It isn't looking good. LeClair said that he hit a rut in the ice and just lost control.
The Flyers come out flying, and within two minutes, they score a goal to pull ahead 4-3. But Crosby wasn't going to let that be the end of the story. He comes down the ice, shoots, misses, and then banks the puck off the goalie into the goal. Score is now tied at 4-4. We did find out with 13 minutes left in the game that Malkin was back from the hospital and in the building. That sounds promising. At 10:58, Crosby assists with a goal by Colby Armstrong. Score is now 5-4 with the Pens leading. The Flyers weren't able to get another goal, and the Pens win--5-4. I'll post whenever I hear more about Malkin.
There has been alot of controversy again over Ben Roethlisberger. The guy is wont to overexaggerate his illness. Hence, there was the time after the AFC Championship loss two years ago, when Roethlisberger said that his toes were broken. No one told Bill Cowher, and he told everyone that Roethlisberger's toes weren't broken. There is still controversy over that. Now the new controversy is Roethlisberger's temperature on Monday. Cowher is saying that Roethlisberger had a temperature of 100.4. Michele Tafoya, who made the statement on ESPN's broadcast of the game, is standing by her story. She said that she heard Roethlisberger had a cold, and that he told her that his temperature was 104. As she said, "When he said that, I thought, 'I can't believe he's out here.' If he said 100.4 to me, I would have said, 'That's not very high, unless it's a toddler.' I never would have gone with anything I didn't believe he had said." Either Roethlisberger misspoke, or he just overexaggerated his illness.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006 -- EveningThe Pens played the Ottawa Senators in the first pre-season game. The Pens didn't manage to pull out a win, but Sidney Crosby scored a goal and an assist to give the Pens the only two points that they had in the game. Evgeni Malkin didn't play in the game. I wonder if that was because of the problems with the contract in Russia. The final score of the game was 5-2. Of course, the pre-season doesn't mean much, but it does make you worry that the team might not gel this coming season. I think that the fans do get abit hyper about having Crosby and Malkin on the team.
Barbaro had a very good week this past week. He continues to be grazed outside. Also, the left leg which is the one stricken with laminitis is doing good, and Dr. Dean Richardson has decided to replace the boot on the foot with a bandage. The cast is still on his right leg and will be monitored. If the vets decide to replace it, they will.
Monday, September 18, 2006 -- EveningFirst Half
The Steelers are playing the Jacksonville Jaguars. The biggest story of the game, of course, is that Ben Roethlisberger is playing 15 days after his appendectomy. Everyone is making a big deal of it, but I doubt that he would have gotten clearance from the doctor to play. There was a controversy when Bill Cowher wanted to challenge a play that wasn't considered a challengeable play. The big play of the first half was when the ball was tipped by James Farrior and then intercepted by Clark Haggans. The announcers for ESPN's Monday Night Football are saying that Roethlisberger is not playing that well, and he does seem to be having some problems connecting with his receivers. The first half ended without any score. To tell the truth, both sides are really sucking and not able to make any connections or yardage. There was no run longer than ten yards. I picked the Steelers to win in my Beat Bob poll for the week. If they win, then I have picked 13 out of 16. If not, then I get 12 out of 16.
Roethlisberger is still playing. It seems that he had a fever of 104 this morning, and seems to be fine now according to Cowher. It's not Roethlisberger because no one seems to be able to run with the ball or catch it. In fact, on the first play for the Steelers in the half, Roethlisberger is sacked. Jacksonville scores first with just abit over five minutes left in the third period with a field goal. Score is 3-0. Time is running out and we are now in the fourth quarter and the Jaguars just scored another field goal with around six minutes left. The announcers are saying that this will be first time since 1981 when the defending Super Bowl Champs were shut out. Darn! With 4:53 left in the game, Roethlisberger threw an interception. It definitely looks like a loss. The Jaguars score with yet another field goal. The score is now 9-0. 1:44 left in the game, and Roethlisberger is intercepted again, and the ball is now on the one yard line for the Jaguars. The Jaguars are going to take the knee to run down the clock, and they win, shutting out the Steelers.
The big news for me is that I purchased a MacBook Pro. I got the 15 inch system with extra memory. I noticed that while I was doing the Pens videos that my Windows computer just wasn't up to snuff. I have some friends and co-workers who have the Mac, so I gathered my pennies together and took the leap. Fortunately, I have been suporting Macs for the past two years now, so I feel abit more comfortable with it. I'm by no means a Mac expert, but it's not that difficult to figure out how to use it. My only problem so far was that when it went to connect to the wireless router, it was using a password and there was no way to change the default to the key. I just said that I didn't have a network connection, and then did my changes through Internet Connection.
Lost in the Fog was euthanized yesterday. it was noticed around a month ago that Lost in the Fog was ill, and then the owners and trainer found out that it was due to cancer. The cancer was around the spleen, and also close to the spinal cord. It's extremely rare for a horse to get cancer. They decided to try chemotherapy on the horse, but then the trainer noticed that Lost in the Fog appeared to be in pain yesterday. After consulting with the vets, Lost in the Fog was put down. The cancer was just too advanced and there wasn't any hope for poor Lost in the Fog.
Monday, September 18, 2006 -- Late AfternoonThere was a rumor in the morning paper that the Pens would not name a captain, and the rumor is true. I can understand the issue with the naming of the captain. The real leader of the team, or the person that everyone wants to lead the team is Sidney Crosby. Even Michel Therrien has admitted it is Crosby's team. The problem is that Crosby is really too young to be a captain. So no one will hold the role for now.
Sunday, September 17, 2006 -- Late AfternoonI am suffering from Big Brother withdrawal. So I have been checking out the blogs of some of the players to see what comments they have to make. Marcellas Reynolds tells us that he was actually sick during his stay in the house with a lung infection. This gave him a sore ear, and he didn't get treatment until he was in Mexico. At that point, he saw a doctor who gave him antibiotics. The other thing that Marcellas says is that his strategy in playing the game was to fly below the radar. The problem, he says, is that the producers didn't show us his diary room strategy sessions, so that's why we think that he had no strategy other than talking negatively about his girl, Janelle. James apologizes to Janelle and her fans for the things that he said about her. Dr. Will says that he is still in love with his girl, Erin Brody. He hopes that she will realize that his actions with Janelle were just strategy to win the game. Janelle's website has a clip of the interview from the View with Janelle, Erika, and Boogie. Rosie O'Donnell is very annoying and doesn't let anyone do alot of talking other than herself.
Saturday, September 16, 2006 -- EveningI went to the Pens practice this morning, and have been diligently working on the video clips that I have of that practice all afternoon and a good portion of the evening. The practice was an interesting and lengthy one. Unfortunately, because of the length, the battery in my video recorder ran out of juice, so I had to give up filming. The players were broken up into two teams with the black team players practicing first. The team was showing alot of speed and energy in the practice. I have to admit that Evgeni Malkin looks huge. He moves fast, but the thing that is impressive about him is how he just commands his place. He is able to push others out of the way and get to the puck. Also, he has nice hands with the puck, and really makes his shots and play look effortless. After the black team practice, there was a scrimmage game between the black and white players. It was only two periods long, and the white team beat the black team with a score of 6-3. Yesterday's practice had a different result with the black team winning with a score of 5-3. They treated the scrimmage as two real periods. The clock ticked down, the announcer called the plays, there were refs, and officials recording the game. It was really neat, and the players were playing the game as if it was for keeps. Whenever a penalty was called, the player who had the penalty against him (or a representative in the case of goaltender interference) would make a shot at the goal with the offending player behind him. Malkin scored a goal this way. He played on the same line as Ryan Malone and Mark Recchi, and Michel Therrien is thinking of keeping it this way in the regular season. Sidney Crosby scored a realtime goal in the game to lead the white team to their win. I left before the white team practice because by that point, I had already been there for over two hours and I was getting hungry. Others were eating hot dogs and nachos, but that wasn't my idea of breakfast food. There is another practice tomorrow morning from 9:00 until 12:30. It should follow the same format as today's practice with white team practice, two period scrimmage, and then the black team practice. If you attend the practice you should be prepared for alot of fans so seating will be more difficult to find in the prime spots the later you go. Also, take some breakfast foods with you--unless you like a "dog" for breakfast. For photos and video clips of today's event, go to my new multimedia page. I will be updating it throughout the season with material from the games and practices.
Friday, September 15, 2006 -- EveningMy boyfriend and I joined some friends this evening at another Japanese hibachi steakhouse. This time we went to Ichiban in Cranberry. The restaurant is located in one of those strip mall plazas right off of Route 19. It doesn't look like much from the outside, and even from the inside, the space looked small, with the tables tightly packed. However I was pleasantly surprised. The salad with ginger sauce was on the small side, but the traditional soup was piping hot. I usually don't eat the soup, but it did have a nice flavor to the broth. When the chef came, he started out with a juggling and spinning of his utensils. Then he moved on to spinning an egg and tossing it on a metal spatula. It was amazing that the egg didn't break, until he intentional caught the end on the side of the spatula. We got the traditional high flame and we even had a flaming volcano that was put out by a little fireman boy doll that peed the fire out. It was quite a show. The food was also excellent. The rice has an superb taste. The shrimp was full of flavor. We went had lomein that was fried up. Veggies and meat were all served hot and flavorful. I was extremely impressed with the food and the entertainment. The portions may not have been the largest, but the food was excellent. Dessert was a very tiny scoop of ice cream. Only chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream and orange sherbert were available. All in all, I had a very good time and would highly recommend the restaurant to others.
Some disappointing news on the hockey front. An arbitration group from the Russian Ice Hockey Federation ruled that Evgeni Malkin would not be eligible to play for any other team than Metallurg Magnitogorsk in the upcoming season. Malkin has a week to respond to the ruling. The deal is that in Russia, a worker can get out of a contract by giving two weeks written notice. Some in Russia say that law doesn't apply to athletes or actors. With the start of the season less than three weeks away, we can only hope that we will be seeing Malkin play for the Pens this season.
Thursday, September 14, 2006 -- EveningToday was the first episode of the ethnically divided Survivor: Cook Island. It was an interesting show, and none of the participants seemed to have an issue with the fact that they were split into races. In fact, they thought that it would be a good social experiment. Read my recap for more details.
UB313 finally has a name. The astronomers in the International Astronomical Union (IAU) have decided to call the object Eris. Eris comes from Greek mythology, and caused a quarrel among the goddesses that caused the Trojan War. That's a fitting name for an object that caused the debate about what is a planet that lead to poor Pluto being demoted.
Wednesday, September 13, 2006 -- EveningThe folks at Real Player were trying very hard to get people to continue paying for their service even after Big Brother All-Stars was over. They promised their customers that there would be a nice surprise after the finale. Well, they did something very interesting indeed. They started replaying the live feeds from day 1. So if you have paid for the Real Player Gold service, you can continue to watch Big Brother. It is a very interesting concept, and I think that I would continue to watch it they provided the live feeds from past years. It doesn't bother me to know how it ends. It's just fun to relive some of those fun moments.
On the Steelers front, Ben Roethlisberger is expected to play against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Monday night. It seems that they are just going to base his return on how he feels. Knowing Roethlisberger, he is probably going to say that he is feeling just fine regardless of whether he does or not. The bad news though is that Troy Polamalu might not play on Monday because of an injury to his shoulder. Polamalu is one of those players who makes things happen, and if he doesn't play, he will be missed.
The Pens are beginning their regular team training camp this week. Public sessions will be held on Friday through Sunday from 9:00 am until 12:30 pm. The reason for the length of the session is that the players will have to do the training in shifts. You can't have 50 some people on the ice at one time. I'm planning on attending both the Saturday and Sunday sessions, and will post the material on my YouTube channel.
Tuesday, September 12, 2006 -- Late EveningI just finished watching the season finale of Big Brother All-Stars. It was great to see some of the recaps of the season. Mike (Boogie) really deserved to win, and he did. Only Marcellas voted for Erika, and I believe that it was a stupid sympathy vote because he knew that no one else would vote for Erika. Erika was used by Chill Town, but felt that she was the user. Poor deluded girl! As for the $25,000 juror prize, it's a no brainer on who won: America's sweetheart--Janelle! If anyone had any sense, they would run to put Janelle in some sort of show.
Mario Lemieux has asked the Pens not to have a re-retirement ceremony for his number. Instead, the number will just be up in its previous location near the roof. As Lemieux said, the attention should be directed to the youth of the team.
Monday, September 11, 2006 -- AfternoonToday is the fifth anniversary of the events of September 11, 2001. I almost said the World Trade Center attack, but that would diminish the happenings at the Pentagon and Somerset, PA. I remember the day vividly because I was actually working on someone's computer when I started to get text pages about a plane going into one of the Towers. At first, the user and I both thought it was a small aircraft. Then I called my boyfriend and found out that it was a large airliner. My first thought was that it was a horrible accident until my boyfriend said that there were stories that it was an active of terror. By the time I was able to finish my work with the user and get down from upper Pitt campus to lower, the first Tower has collapsed. I watched the television in the commons room of William Pitt Union unable to comprehend what was happening, as was the case with most around me. When the second Tower collapsed most people just wanted to go home to be with family. I remember that some of my co-workers didn't want to go back to work because they worked in the Cathedral of Learning which is a tall landmark in Pittsburgh's Oakland area, and there were stories about the plane in the Somerset area. It was a very traumatizing day. What I find hard to believe is that I have some "friends"--wacky, conspiracy theorists who believe that there are no terrorists, and that 9/11 was just a government plot to control people with the use of fear. Supposedly, there was a survey that was done of around 1000 people, and it was found that 36% of them believed that the government either allowed the terrorists to act or were behind the terrorists. My only comment is that I wonder how random a pool was it. They could have just happened upon a large pocket of conspiracy types. The NIST actually have a fact sheet that refutes the point that the conspiracy theorists make, but I know that my friend would not listen to anything like that. His mind is already made up and nothing will change it. I have found that it is better not to associate with him because he says such wacky things all the time, and you really can't talk to him about it because he just calls any comments that others make stupid. I suppose he says the same about me because I am just as sure that the acts of 9/11 were those of terrorists--and not terrorists sponsored by the American government.
Sunday, September 10, 2006 -- EveningSince I got alot of video footage from the Pens rookie practice this morning, I started a YouTube account. I'll put the videos that I get from the practices there. I'll probably add videos from other events in the Pittsburgh area too. So far, the videos that I have there are of Sidney Crosby watching the practice, some drill footage, a shootout practice, and a scrimmage. Here's my channel.
Sunday, September 10, 2006 -- AfternoonMy boyfriend and I went to the Pens rookie practice this morning. The practice was scheduled from 10:00 am until 11:30 am, but it ran over that time. The practice started with drills for the first hour. There were one on one and two on two scenarios on both ends of the ice. All were off the form of one trying to score while the other tries to prevent the score. After that, there was a zamboni of the ice and then a half hour game. The players then had to do some exercising drills up and down the ice to show their skating ability and conditioning. Finally, the players just milled around on the ice and practiced shooting the puck. The folks who were manning the Mellon Arena were getting antsy because the practice was still going on at noon, and they wanted to go home. Evgeni Malkin, Jordan Staal, and Noah Welch were among the players on the ice. I have to admit that on young kid really caught my eye because he was getting the puck into the net and making some nice moves. That was number 74, Michal Sersen. You had to feel for Malkin because everytime he had the puck, people would cheer. He scored a goal in one of the drills and everyone just cheered. In fact one guy in the stands Was standing behind Malkin pretending to put his arm around Malkin's shoulders while Malkin was standing with his back to the audience. The section of seating that was cordoned off for the fans was packed. I'd say there were over one thousand people there. We were all on one side of the arena and on the other were some coaches and management, including Michel Therrien and Ray Shero. Sidney Crosby and Ryan Malone were also in the stands, and I have a clip of them watching the practice. I also have a clip of some of the practice drills. Here's the breakdown of the players at the rookie training camp:
39 Jordan Morrison
42 Stephen Dixon
46 Ryan Stone
49 Kristopher Letang
53 Moises Gutierrez
56 Jonathan Filewich
58 Paul Bissonnette
61 Daniel Fernholm
63 Tim Wallace
70 Mathieu Roy
71 Evgeni Malkin
74 Michal Sersen
4 Noah Welch
48 Tyler Kennedy
51 Nick Johnson
52 Jordan Staal
54 Ryan Lannon
57 Daniel Carcillo
59 Jeff Kyrazakos
64 Ryan Martinelli
65 J.P. Paquet
67 Joe Jensen
72 Connor James
40 J.C. Blanchard
50 Patrick Ehelechner
60 Gabriel Bouthillette
Saturday, September 9, 2006 -- EveningThe Pittsburgh Panthers won the game last night with a score of 33-15. Some sports analysts had comments to make after the game because the Panthers had a huge lead, and then just really stopped playing which allowed the Bearcats to get the momentum on their side. It seemed for a while that the Bearcats might make a stronger bid, but the Panthers managed to hole them off. The reason that some of the local sports guys got on the Panthers case is that it is okay to allow the Bearcats to gain some momentum, but you can't stop playing like that if you are playing a team that can come back to whoop your ass. I think that in this case, it really wasn't much of a concern because they just really weren't in trouble of losing.
Sequester house for the Big Brother All-Stars doesn't have as tight of a security control as one would hope. Will and Danielle were spotted on the town in Palm Springs while they were supposed to be in sequester. when the producers found out, they put a stop to the activities. It makes you wonder what they might have found out about the game while they were out. Meanwhile it is utter boredom in the BB house with only Boogie and Erika prancing around and congratulating themselves on being such great game players. Boogie played the game--mostly with the help of Will. He had a definite jerkish behavior, especially when things didn't go his way. Erika was just a stupid girl who was used by the guys and just managed to scrape by to get into the final two.
This evening my boyfriend and I went to the Lone Star Steakhouse at the Pointe in Robinson Township. I have to admit that I was disappointed with the service. The restaurant used to be busy. The restaurant used to be packed. When we got there it was around 6:50. Now considering the location, you would think the place would be hopping. Nope. There were several empty tables. But guess what. I was told that we would have to wait at least 10 minutes and was handed a pager. There were four other couples just sitting there chilling while there were several empty and cleared tables. I asked about it and was told that they wanted to give the kitchen a "break". What? Busy dinner hours should be anticipated, and you should want the tables filled not sitting empty. You should plan for all of your tables to be full and folks told to wait because there is no space. You shouldn't be holding tables empty and having folks wait because your kitchen doesn't like a full restaurant. This is the sign of a loser place and that explains why other restaurants in the area are packed, and this place has empty tables. My boyfriend wanted to leave because he couldn't understand a wait with empty tables. I waited five minutes and then went up and said that I was tired of waiting and wanted to be seated at one of the empty tables. When the table seater tried to tell me that the needed to have empty tables to keep the kitchen in order, I said that they should address the incompetent management because any restaurant should anticipate and be able to handle a dinner rush, and if they couldn't, they needed to get rid of the loser manager. The manager came over then after that to explain, but there is no explanation. The entire time that we were there, there were empty tables. By 8 pm, the place was mostly empty. Yes, 8 pm on a Saturday night. That should be their busiest time. Obviously it is because they make people wait while there are empty tables. Pitiful! I have to admit that the waiter was bending over backward because I had complained. Even then my order still got screwed up--they forgot the shrimp. The manager needs to watch Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares. I will definitely not return to that location again.
Friday, September 8, 2006 -- EveningI am not a huge fan of the University of Pittsburgh Panthers. I think that the reason is because I find some many things that are wrong with the system at Pitt, especially in how it wastes money and puts a priority on sport instead of education with the football and men's basketball players. The one thing that I suppose that I have to say is that the football team does seem to have improved from last year. Dave Wannstedt has done a decent job of recruiting and seems to have energized the players this year. Tonight the Panthers are playing against the University of Cincinnati Bearcats. Surprisingly the Panthers appear to be taking advantage of offensive opportunity. Right now with only two minutes left in the third period, the Panthers are leading the Bearcats with a score of 23-7.
Friday, September 8, 2006 -- MorningThe Steelers won last night in an exciting fourth quarter. Go to my Steelers page for the recap and score.
Thursday, September 7, 2006 -- EveningToday has been a very busy day for me. I went to work today, but took an early and lengthy lunch break to go to Bob O'Connor's funeral mass. I arrived at St. Paul's Cathedral around 10:30 am and waited for the funeral procession. While we were waiting, I saw Lynn Swann and Dan Rooney and his wife arrive. The horse-drawn carriage arrived at 10:45 with the procession of family and friends. The funeral mass took around two hours and 15 minutes. Father Terry, Bob O'Connor's elder son, gave a homily. Archbishop Donald Wuerl officiated. Bob's daugher, Heidi, and younger son, Corey, both spoke. Heidi was crying so much that it was difficult to understand her. Then Corey spoke, and he commented on how when his father's coffin left the funeral home, he realized it would be the last time he would see him. He said that the family put a Terrible Towel in the coffin with his dad, who was a huge Steelers fan and had season tickets since 1874 in the end zone. Judy, Bob's wife, unexpectedly, also decided to say a few words, and said that Bob loved Pittsburgh and thanked everyone for everything. It was very touching. After the mass, Bob's coffin was placed in a motorized hearse and the procession took a tour of the city on the way to the cemetary. The most touching moment was when Bob's hearse went past the local Coffee Tree coffee shop and everyone there raised their coffee cups to him in a 21 cup salute. Take a look at the pictures that I took of the event.
Sad news on Big Brother All-Stars. Boogie won the final HOH, and he took Erika with him to the final two. Janelle really should have won the game because she was the best competitor, but Boogie was right that he could not beat Janelle in the final. She admitted it too. Janelle will be okay in the end. Read the recap for more details.
Since things are working out with Sam Fingold, the Pens are talking to two other original bidders. One of the two is Andrew Murstein who had backing from Dan Marino and Mark Cuban. The Pens are hoping that the issue is resolved soon.
The Steelers are playing the Miami Dolphins this evening in the first game of the NFL season. We were told that there would be a thrilling beginning and everyone should be watching at 8 pm. The game started at 8:30 pm. Well, all they had was some lame ass singing and Jerome Bettis entering the field in a bus. There was nothing of any really interest to watch. Fortunately, I went into the other room to watch the much more exciting Big Brother. More on the game later.
Wednesday, September 6, 2006 -- EveningJerome Bettis was in town with the NBC crew for tomorrow's night Steelers vs. Dolphins game. The Steelers gave Jerome a locker that is open to the public and has some of the things that Bettis used or that are associated with him. After the unveiling of Jerome's locker, he went to the Giant Eagle in Robinson Township to sign Super Bowl DVDs. He is going to be doing that until around 8:30 tonight which is an hour and a half from now. It seems that Jerome also made some comments in his role as a news analyst that the Steelers might not have an easy time of it this year. I have to agree. I know that some analysts are saying that the Steelers are going to have a good year and possibly be in contention for the Super Bowl again, but I'm not as hopeful. In other news, Brian St. Pierre was added to the active roster as a backup quarterback. Because of this Chidi Iwumoa was released.
I thought that there would be a second HOH competition on the Big Brother All-Stars live feeds today, but so far there is nothing. The only thing that I can assume is that the competition will be held later this evening. I've been keeping an eye on the feeds, but they are now very boring. Boogie appears to be over his tantrum from yesterday and is trying to scheme for Janelle to take him to the final two. As he tells her, Erika has alot of friends in sequester and thinks that will go against Janelle. We'll have to see if she falls for it. I have to admit that Janelle's move from yesterday of evicting Will was such a shocker that everyone on all the BB web sites are talking about it. The other news is that the shows have been pulling in good ratings this year, and yesterday's show had one of the best ratings since September 2004. There were nine million viewers to yesterday's show. Big Brother usually doesn't attract high ratings because it is a summer show and alot of people put it down. However, I love it. It's my favorite of the reality shows.
The Pens have a rookie practice this week, and the sessions will be open to the public this coming Saturday and Sunday from 10 am until 11:30 am. The overall training camp starts the week after that with public session Sept. 15-17. Times for those practices have yet to be released. The practices will be at Mellon Arena.
Tuesday, September 5, 2006 -- EveningOnly three more episodes of Big Brother All-Stars are left. Shocker of shockers is that Janelle evicts Will. Boogie has a temper tantrum after that and acts like the non-class act that he has accused others of being, and Janelle lets go of the key with one hand when Boogie jumps from the volcano so Erika wins the first endurance competition for HOH. Read the recap for more shocking details.
Tuesday, September 5, 2006 -- AfternoonEvgeni Malkin signed a contract with the Pens today. Malkin arrived in Pittsburgh last night and was signed by 10 am this morning. He's going to be staying with Sergei Gonchar for a few months until he becomes acclimated to the language and culture abit. I am really excited about the upcoming season. Now if only the team will gell, and someone puts Mark Recchi in his place.
Finally, the truth is out. It appears that Marco Materazzi insulted Zinedine Zidane's sister right before the infamous headbutt. The whole thing seemed abit lame if you ask me. Materazzi grabbed Zidine's shirt. Zidine said that Materazzi could have the shirt after the game, and Materazzi said that he would prefer Zidine's sister. Boy, Zidine is really a wussy if this is the type of insult that warrants a headbutt. Geeze, what's the next step up? Calling each other poopie pants? Finding out the truth is very anti-climatic.
Some news is out about Bob O'Connor's illness. It seems that he had a very aggressive form of central nervous system lymphoma. It seems that the treatments that were given did nothing, and the cancer had spread to the spinal cord in the final two days. It seems that poor Bob's days were numbered from the beginning. Also, it appears that he had been having headaches for several months before seeking professional help. The thing that doctors say now is that even if he had gotten treatment earlier because of the aggressiveness of the cancer, it might not have made any difference. That brings up the question of whether his quality of life in the past two months would have been better without treatment. It's a hard call to make because I know that I would want the treatment because I would want to live. However, if you were told that it would only add a few days or weeks to your life with the life being poorer quality, then it would be tricky. I think that most people want to have quality time--alert and somewhat pain free. It just makes the story sadder to know there was no hope.
Google Books is now up in its beta format. The site contains a slew of public domain books that searchers can browse or download. I looked for some titles, and I have to admit that I think that I prefer Project Gutenberg. The difference is that with Google you see the scanned pages, while Gutenberg gives you a text version. Yes, it might be prettier to "flip" through the pages on Google, but I'd rather have the whole book available for reading, even it is in text format.
Monday, September 4, 2006 -- Late AfternoonThere was some talk yesterday about what the Steelers would do with the quarterback position. Some of the local sports folks seem to think that they would bring back Tommy Maddox. However, I think that there is alot of bad feeling towards Maddox. Maddox didn't show up when the Steelers went to DC to be honored by President Bush. He also didn't show up for the ring ceremony. Also, the games that the Steelers lost last year can be laid at the door of Maddox's incompetence. Yeah, you can think it's just me, but there was a discussion on one of the ESPN about the Steelers results last year and this, and the concensus was that Maddox lost the games for the team. Anyway, I was in shock when I heard the local sportscasters talking like Maddox was a viable option. Thankfully, the Steelers didn't consider Maddox. They signed Brian St. Pierre to the practice squad. The thing is that Ben Roethlisberger is probably only going to miss two games at the most, and Charlie Batch is more than capable of being the starting quarterback.
Rumor has it that Evgeni Malkin is going to sign with the Pens tomorrow. It seems that they are in agreement on all but a few minor, final details. There isn't alot to contest about the contracts because the contracts are the same across the NHL for rookies. The question is whether Metallurg Magnitogorsk will take legal action to prevent Malkin from playing this coming season.
Monday, September 4, 2006 -- AfternoonI didn't believe this story when I heard it today. Steve Irwin, the Crocodile Hunter, was killed in a freak accident off of Queensland's Batt Reef (part of the Great Barrier Reef). The crew was there to film a show on deadly ocean creatures when Irwin wound up approaching a sting ray from on top and getting stabbed with the tail under the rib cage and into the heart. They tried CPR, but it was actually too late, and Irwin was declared dead by the paramedics. They were actually filming at the time and they reviewed the tape of the incident. It seems that the sting ray must have felt threatened because of the location of the cameraman and Irwin and just lashed out with his tail. Irwin was only 44 years old. It's just shocking that someone who did so many dangerous things would wind up dying because of an accident like this. It was just a freakish coincidence that Irwin was just in the wrong position. Sting rays are poisonous, but it wasn't the poison that did the damage, but the tail acting like a knife and stabbing Irwin's heart. Irwin's wife was on a nature walk elsewhere in Australia, but returned home with their two kids, daughter Bindi, 8, and son Bob, 3.
Sunday, September 3, 2006 -- EveningBad news for the Steelers. The reason that Ben Roethlisberger wasn't at practice today is because he became ill right before practice and had an emergency appendectomy. Roethlisberger is going to be out for at least a week and will miss Thursday's first regular season game against the Miami Dolphins.
Only nine more days are left in Big Brother All-Stars. In tonight's episode, we saw Boogie win the HOH and the nomination of Erika and Janelle. We already knew that from watching the live feeds. Also, Janelle has won the POV so she is going to be in the final three. Read my BB page for details on tonight's episode and things that have happened on the live feeds. Unfortunately not much is happening on the feeds except for sleeping and eating.
I finished reading The English Assassin by Daniel Silva this weekend. If there is one thing that Daniel Silva can do, it's writing spy novels. The English Assassin is different from some of the other Silva novels that I have read because it doesn't have a terrorist as a bad guy. The bad guy in this instance are the powers in Switzerland who want to keep the country's deeds during Second World War undercovers. Not only that, but the powers that be want to keep the wealth that it has accummulated from dealing with the Nazis and cheating the Jews. This particular book is the second in the Gabriel Allon series, and he enters the story because of his work as an art restorer. Instead, Allon finds himself alone in a house with a dead body of a reculsive multimillionaire, Augustus Rolfe and the Swiss police on his tail. In the process of trying to figure out who killed Rolfe, Allon finds himself involved with Rolfe's daughter, gifted violinist, Anna Rolfe. The English assassin of the title is the person who is hired by the Swiss powers to hide the trail of the group who killed Rolfe. The book is a race between the English Assassin and Allon. Allon finds himself in some pretty tricky situations, and at times, I wondered if Allon would be able to extricate himself from the dilemnas that he finds himself in. As with the other books, the plot is intricate and the pacing is fast. It was an interesting read, and again, I have to highly recommend the book to anyone who likes thrilling action. As with the other books, you also get an education in how the Nazi rulers stole the art collections of prominent Jewish collectors and how the Swiss government has blood on its hands from its willingness to line the pockets of the powerful in the country without reguard for human life.
Sunday, September 3, 2006 -- Late AfternoonBob O'Connor is now lying in state in the City/County building today. The local television stations have been making periodic breaks throughout the day to show footage of area when Bob's casket is. The weather has been adding to the somber mood with overcast skies and chilly weather. What I am not happy about is that Luke Ravenstahl received a letter from the City Law department saying that Ravenstahl can complete Bob's full term. That is over three years. The problem that I have with it is that even though Ravenstahl is an elected official and was elected to his post on the City Council, I didn't vote for him to be mayor. I think that the fair move would be to allow Ravenstahl to be mayor until the next general election in 2007. That would give the Democrats and the Republicians time to gather resources and candidates for the race. Others are already planning on contending this statement because the language in the city charter is vague and can be interpreted several ways.
One of my favorite Steelers, Ike Taylor has been signed to a five year, $22.5 million contact. I like Ike--as do so many people--because he is personable, good at what he does, and most of all, because he loves Pittsburgh. Taylor was saying from the beginning that he thought that things would be worked out with the Steelers because he loved the city and really wanted to remain with them. What was ironic is that I just saw a show about the day in the life of Taylor. The local Comcast On Demand selections have a whole slew of "day in the life" with various Steelers. The one with Taylor is from two years ago and even then he was talking about how happy he was to be a Steeler and how much he loved being with the team. I'm glad that things were worked out between them. Meanwhile, Ben Roethlisberger did not show up for practice today. Of course that has raised some questions, and we are going to have to wait until practice is over to hear from Bill Cowher about it.
Saturday, September 2, 2006 -- EveningDuce Staley is still with the Steelers, but will be relegated to a third string role. The final two players released by the Steelers were Quincy Morgan and Andre Frazier.
Funeral arrangements for Bob O'Connor have been announced. There will be visitation at the City-County Building in Pittsburgh starting at noon tomorrow and running through (including night hours) Monday at 10 pm. After that, the family will have visitations at a funeral home in Shadyside on Tuesday and Wednesday. A burial mass will be held on Thursday at 11 am at St. Paul's Cathedral in Oakland. The mass will be given by Archbishop Donald Wuerl. As a memorial to Bob here in Squirrel Hill, ribbons are being placed on trees and light posts on Forbes and MUrray Avenues.
Saturday, September 2, 2006 -- Early AfternoonThe Steelers have released 20 players today and still have to get rid of two more by 6 pm this evening to meet the 53 man roster limit. There weren't any "big" names or unexpected moves in the 20. Obviously, they are going to keep Duce Staley who has been a low producer in the two years that he has played for the Steelers. Staley did play more in the final pre-season game that the Steelers lost. The story is that he was played more so they could see if it was capable of performing and worthy of keeping on the roster. I think they also wanted to see how sore he would be because he has spent so many weeks injured on the sidelines watching the game in sweats. Personally I think that Staley has been a huge waste of money for the team. As for the team itself, the performances that we've seen in the pre-season worries me. Other sports analysts in the city aren't concerned, and the team is still being picked as being number one in the AFC North conference. I just don't think that that it's warranted. We will have to see how they do, but I have don't have a good feeling about this season. Of course, if you look through the blog, you will realize that I felt the same way last year, and they went on to win the Super Bowl.
Friday, September 1, 2006 -- EveningVery sad news this evening. Bob O'Connor died this evening at 8:55. Ever since he went into the hospital on July 6 for flu-like symptoms, he has been on everyone's thoughts and prayers. It's just hard to image at this point that Bob won't be walking down the street, a huge smile on his face, always ready to say hello or say a few words. My sympathies go out to his wife, children, family, and numerous friends.
Friday, September 1, 2006 -- Early MorningThe HOH competition was held late last night on Big Brother All-Stars. It seems that Boogie won, and it is now guaranteed that Janelle and Erika are going to go up on the block. I hope that Janelle wins the POV so she came make it to the final three. At least then she will stand a chance of winning.
More information came out about Bob O'Connor last night. It appears that he was on life support earlier in the week, but that he has now been removed from it. According to the doctors instead of it being a day by day situation, it is now an hour by hour. I would imagine that he won't make it through the day and that really saddens me. I remember all the time that I've seen him on the streets here, always smiling and happy. After he won the Democratic primary last year, he held a party right here in Schenley Park. As my boyfriend and I were driving home by work, there was Bob--a picnic going on in the park, standing by the roadside with a sign that said "thank you", beaming and waving at all the people who passed. I guess that's the thing that we should remember about him. That he was happy and that he actually achieved his dream.