Friday, January 28, 2005


“We woke up at 7:30 am this morning in Krakow. After breakfast we got on the bus and started heading for Auschwitz and Birkenau. After we arrived we saw this room with pictures and a really powerful statue. As we left the room to embark on our tour we saw the sign over the camp. It was the same sign that I saw in pictures many times before but somehow actually being there really made me think. We began to tour what were once called blocks – now they are restored and definitely resemble museums. Inside were many pictures and quotes from the Holocaust. The museums also contained artifacts that belonged to the inmates – human hair, shoes, clothing, suitcases with last names written across them, dishes, shoe polish, etc. On our way out of Auschwitz we saw a brief historical movie. I had a much different feeling when I was at Birkenau. For some reason it seemed much colder and more real to me. The barracks where the inmates lived and beds they slept in really made me visualize the whole thing in a way the movies and artifacts did not. Tears came to my eyes when I saw the toilets that the inmates used. When I was sitting at the memorial and saw the incense burning I sat and wondered about the same question that has always come to my mind about the Holocaust: How could human beings have been so cruel and inhuman to other human beings regardless of race, religion, or physical disability? Looking at and standing in the krematoriums and gas chambers with the finger nail marks going up and down the cement walls just repulsed me and I couldn’t believe I was standing where it actually happened.”

That was my journal entry on June 24, 1992, the day I visited Auschwitz and Birkenau. Pardon my trite attitude but I was only 16. I remember the horror I felt that day very well though and the difficulty I had even writing those words. I would add that I was there on a warm summer day and the sun was shining brightly. It’s ironic that the sun could shine so brightly on such a place, is it not?

Yesterday marked the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Thursday, January 27, 2005


I walked into the kitchen at work shortly after 10:30 to make my second cup of green tea this morning. While watching the tea steep in the boiling water my eyes move over to the table. My eyes widen as I take in the glorious sight of the most perfect looking cupcakes ever sitting on the table. That means today is someone’s Birthday in the office. I’m sure I signed a card but who can keep track of it all? Here I am making the green tea, minding my own business, and I get tempted with perfection. After closer inspection it looks like a vanilla butter cake slathered generously with pink butter cream frosting and just the right amount of rainbow sprinkles. I’m at a crossroads. Do I resist and go about my day satisfied by my green tea and immense willpower? Alas, I do not because I am weak, and because I would not want to spend the rest of the day being taunted by the cupcakes so I give in. I take in the sweet scent as I take the paper off the bottom. I take a bite. It’s exactly the right cake to frosting ratio; its cupcake bliss. It was carb-a-licious. As I finished the cupcake I took a moment to reflect on what just transpired. I vowed to not give in to any other indulgences for the remainder of the week. By 11 am I was reaping the benefits of true sugar high. Wouldn’t it be spectacular if the high lasted a life time and the down didn’t ever come?

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Why Do You Blog?

I blog because I do enjoy writing. Also, I have a lot of opinions and I enjoy feedback from others who have similar opinions as well as others who have completely opposite opinions. Sometimes it's a good way to share a feeling about or work out a conflict with a particular person without actually bringing it up face to face. Sometimes it's just a desire to put something "out there." Where out there is I'm really not sure but you catch my drift. I was really touched when I read this article about blogging in yesterday's San Francisco Chronicle. It's worth the read. Why do you blog?

Thursday, January 20, 2005

St. Louis Weblogger Meetup

Wednesday night was the first St. Louis Weblogger Meetup. I applaud LostPear for taking the initiative to attempt to get the group started. Unfortunately the attendance was kind of lacking but it was still cool to meet LostPear, Nuance, and a friend of theirs. I’m a regular reader of both sites and I can honestly say it’s interesting to associate a real person with the words on the screen. Not only that but I went to high school with LostPear which proves once again that as large a city as St. Louis is it’s really a small town. Thank you to the three of you for making me feel welcome amongst your close group.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005


Email can be an invaluable form of communication. That said, it can also make for an endless inbox offering me a new mortgage, penis enhancements for the penis I do not have, easy access to prescription medication, and a variety of other useless spam. Sometimes I feel like all I do is delete crap. I also delete crap that people I actually know forward to me after someone they presumably know forwarded it to them. I feel like I'm extending my fellow human beings a courtesy by stopping the cycle. I know, I will continue with or without the miniscule role I play in all of this.

I did want to share with you an email I actually read this morning because I did find it mildly amusing. If you're not from St. Louis you won't find it funny but if you are I think it's worth a quick read through. I do not know where it originated.

ST. LOUIS BARBIE Mattel recently announced the release of Limited-edition Barbie Dolls for the St. Louis Market:

Chesterfield Barbie
This princess Barbie is sold only at Chesterfield Mall. She comes with
an assortment of Kate Spade Handbags, a Lexus SUV, a longhaired foreign
dog named Honey and a cookie cutter house. Available with or without
tummy tuck and face lift. Workaholic Ken sold only in conjunction with "augmented" version.

Florissant Barbie
This modern day homemaker Barbie is available with Ford Windstar
Minivan and matching gym outfit. She gets lost easily and has no full
time occupation or secondary education. Traffic jamming cell phone sold separately.

East St. Louis Barbie
This recently paroled Barbie comes with a 9mm handgun, a Ray Lewis
knife, a Chevy with dark tinted windows and a Meth Lab Kit. This model
is only available after dark and must be paid for in cash (preferably
small, untraceable bills). Unless you are a cop, then we don't know what you are talking about.

Ladue Barbie
This yuppie Barbie comes with your choice of BMW convertible or Hummer
H2. Included are her Starbucks cup, credit card and country club
membership. Also available for this set are Shallow Ken and Private
School Skipper. You won't be able to afford any of them.

Granite City Barbie
This pale model comes dressed in her own Wrangler jeans two sizes too
small, a NASCAR shirt and tweety bird tattoo on her shoulder. She has a
six-pack of Bud light and a Hank Williams, Jr. CD set. She can spit over 5 feet and kick mullet-hair Ken's butt when she is drunk. Purchase her pickup truck separately and get a confederate flag bumper sticker absolutely free.

Clayton Barbie
This collagen injected, rhino plastic Barbie wears a leopard print
outfit and drinks cosmopolitans while entertaining friends. Percocet
prescription available.

Imperial Barbie
This tobacco-chewing, brassy-haired Barbie has a pair of her own
high-heeled sandals with one broken heel from the time she chased
beer-gutted Ken out of Arnold Barbie's house. Her ensemble includes low-rise acid washed jeans, fake fingernails, and a see through halter-top. Also available with a mobile home.

Tower Grove Barbie
This doll is made of actual tofu. She has long straight brown hair,
archless feet, hairy armpits, no makeup and Birkenstocks with white socks.She prefers that you call her "Willow." She does not want or need a Ken doll,but if you purchase two Tower Grove Barbies and the optional Subaru wagon,you get a rainbow flag bumper sticker for free.

Ferguson Barbie
This Barbie now comes with a stroller and infant doll. Optional
accessories include a GED and bus pass. Gangsta Ken and his '79 Caddy
were available, but are now very difficult to find since the addition
of the infant.

St. Charles County Barbie
She's perfect in every way. We don't know where Ken is 'cause he's
always hunting.

Central West End Barbie/Ken
This versatile doll can be easily converted from Barbie to Ken by
simply adding or subtracting the multiple "snap-on" parts.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

I'm still here.

I am still alive. Between December 17th and January 1st I was really busy and didn’t feel much like posting. The cousin wedding weekend turned out OK in spite of the ill-fitting and uncomfortable dress. A lot of family came in town that I hadn’t seen in years so it was nice to catch up. Right before Christmas I turned 29. That big 30 number is really looming now. Christmas was a nice 3 day weekend and I had five days at New Year’s. It’s always rough going back to work when you know all of the days off you were looking forward to have ended. Instead of a year in review bit I thought I might highlight the best parts of the last 3 weeks:

I went to Red Moon for my Birthday. If you haven’t been there yet you should check it out. They did an amazing job decorating the space and the food is pretty good too. Order the duck egg rolls.

I got a pink IPOD mini for my Birthday. I ♥ it.

My father got a French bulldog puppy named Isaac. He’s got the cutest little face and the biggest ears you’ve ever seen. It makes me want one. I can’t commit though. The responsibility of a puppy would send me over the edge. Good thing I can play with him and then give him back.

I spent a lot of time chilling during the New Year’s time off and saw Spanglish and Closer. I loved both of them. They’re very different movies. I left both movies remarking how easy it is for one person’s emotional baggage to destroy the entire relationship’s house of cards. This happens much more so in Closer than in Spanglish. I heard that a lot of people have had unfavorable reactions to Closer because the characters are so twisted and manipulative. I think it’s just what people do to each other. Some just do it on a higher level than others.

Shattered Glass is on cable right now. I watched this movie Sunday night and think it was great and really well done. I’m surprised it didn’t get more press than it did last year.

That’s it for now. Happy New Year and welcome to the year I try to accomplish everything I think I should accomplish by the time I turn 30. The big 30 and the next holiday season will be here before we know it.