Because everyone loves free food


There are a large variety of wild birds living around our apartment. We thought it would be fun for our cats if we put bird feeders out on the balcony to help attract them.

So far, it’s been a huge success.

At first I couldn’t figure out what would be the best type of feeder to use. I finally just settled on two large tin pans. They are made to put under a potted plant, but they work great as balcony bird feeders. In one we put black sunflower seeds and the other we put regular bird seed. The black sunflower seeds are intended for the blue jays and the cardinals. Not only do they come and eat the black sunflowers, they eat the regular bird seed too.

Not only do blue jays and cardinals show up to eat, but we get a lot of other birds too. Sparrows, finches, doves, and a few other birds I can’t identify. No orioles yet. I’ve lived in Maryland now for 15 years and the only orioles I’ve ever seen are the kind that get in trouble for using steroids.

The NFL has a steroid problem?

It looks like quite a few NFL players have tested positive for steroids. ESPN is reporting that the New Orleans Saints have three players, Deuce McAllister, Will Smith, and Charles Grant have tested positive under the NFL’s steroid policy.

NFL players are taking steroids? What’s next, an ESPN report that players on the road cheat on their wives?

Of course players in the NFL take steroids. Men don’t naturally put on as much muscle as the average NFL lineman or any of the other strength position players without taking extraordinary messages. That includes lifting lots of weights and taking lots of supplements, including steroids.

Steroids don’t make you stronger. They don’t give you more muscles. What they do is allow you to heal and recover quicker. That means you can lift a lot of weights and spend less time recovering in between workouts. Some people mistakenly think steroids allow you to work less, but the complete opposite is true. They allow you to work harder and more often. [ESPN]

Yet even more fun with Psoriasis

I woke up this morning and felt like total crap. I’ve been taking the chemotherapy drug Methotrexate for my psoriasis. I take two pills Monday evening, two pills Tuesday morning, and two more pills Tuesday evening. I don’t take any more until the following Monday evening. The side effects of Methotrexate include among other things, anemia. I don’t know if that’s what I have now. I only know that I feel like shit.

I had to call in to work this morning and take 8 hours of personal time. To say this has been frustrating is a complete understatement.

My hands are still a complete mess. They aren’t getting better. I don’t feel or see any improvement. They are still severely cracked and the skin on my fingers is hard and inflexible. Some days at work I can barely hold tools. Yesterday I was installing a ribbon cable into a connector when I noticed red marks on the ribbon cable. I quickly realized it was my own blood. One of the fissures on my hand had begun to bleed.

This actually happens a lot.

I’ve read that the worse place you can get psoriasis is the soles of your feet. When the skin cracks, it becomes painful to walk. I’m not disputing that, but I honestly believe the worse place to get it is on your hands. At least if it was on my feet, I would be wearing socks and shoes. Nobody could see it. I wouldn’t have the never ending fear of bleeding on something. I wouldn’t worry about situations where I am expected to shake someone’s hand. I wouldn’t worry about a sales person reacting with revulsion when they hand me my change. I am just getting extremely tired of it.

I want to stop taking the Methotrexate. It’s not even working. Even if it did work, it’s not a long term, permanent answer to psoriasis. I can not take Methotrexate forever. From what I can tell from reading the literature, it would eventually destroy my liver.

Why I hate New England sports fans

Evidently there are some New England Patriots fans that want the NFL to investigate the final 1:22 of the Superbowl. They contend that the clock was stopped when it should not have been. They have an online petition that so far as garnered 16,340 signatures. I’m not sure how many of those are fake. I’m sure quite a few people signed in jest.

I signed the petition as Nomar McWhiner.

Even if 10% of the signatures are legit, that’s far too many. It’s pathetic.

From reading the petition, it appears they want the game replayed. Like that is going to happen. If steroid junkie Rodney Harrison has made a play against David Tyree, Patriot fans wouldn’t be whining about anything. They certainly wouldn’t be asking the NFL to investigate so they can replay the game.

I would think the last thing any Patriots fan would want is the NFL to do any more investigating.

Cold weather NFL football

They show that the temperature was zero degrees with a wind chill of minus-32. I remember it being minus-40, but maybe it’s warmed up 8 degrees since then.

I was reading about today’s NFC Championship game between the New York football Giants and the Green Bay Packers. The article mentioned that it might turn out to be the coldest game played in NFL history. They say the temperature in Green Bay will be a a balmy 3 degrees tonight at the 5:30 PM CST kickoff.

I’ve never been to Green Bay, but I did once watch a football game in the brutal cold. On January 15, 1994 I went to Orchard Park, New York to watch my beloved Los Angeles Raiders lose to the Buffalo Bills 29-23. Not that I knew before hand that they were going to lose.

I was in the Air Force and stationed at Griffiss Air Force Base located in upstate New York. ESPN shows that it was the 3rd coldest game played in NFL history. They show that the temperature was zero degrees with a windchill of minus-32. I remember it being minus-40, but maybe it’s warmed up 8 degrees since then.

It wasn’t just cold, it was alien planet cold.

The worse part about watching a football game in the brutal cold is sitting in one spot for hours at a time, not moving. You are just sitting there. No matter how much you bundle up, you are going to get cold. The number of layers of clothing you put on only helps to delay the inevitable.

You will get cold and once you do, it’s impossible to get warm.

We had seats on the two-yard line, 13 rows up from the field. I remember things sounding different in the cold. The Raiders moved the ball and scored a touchdown. They then attempted an extra point. When the kicker’s foot hit that ball, it made a bizzare sound. It didn’t sound right. It didn’t sound like a foot making contact with a leather football. The ball failed to go through the uprights and instead bounced off the crossbar. It sounded like a cannon ball hitting the metal crossbar.

I remember a Bills fan sitting in the end zone seating taking off his clothing from the waist up. His bare, pale flesh was exposed to the elements. Security grabbed him and took him off somewhere. I guess he wanted to get on TV. I don’t know if he got on TV, but his stupid stunt earned him a permanent spot in my memory.

I went to the game bundled up in layers of clothing. I wore my Los Angeles Raiders coat under my Air Force extreme weather parka. I wore sweatpants and long underwear under my pants. I even brought my Air Force issued cold weather mummy sleeping bag to sit in while watching the game.

I’m glad I did. That said, it took me about three days to get warm.

The ironic thing about that game was how it contrasted from the prior Raiders game I attended. It was at the Los Angeles Colosseum where they lost to the visiting Browns. The temperature on the field was 100 degrees and I walked away with a nasty sunburn.

Even though the Raiders lost the game, I was glad that I went. It turned out to be Howie Long’s final game. He was always my favorite player.