Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween Weekend

You see a lot of things on Halloween, but this year I had a first.

I think most of us have become accustomed to seeing the sexy nurse, flight attendant, army girl, or whatever. I'm not complaining, I'm just saying I've seen it. The novel thing for me this Halloween was seeing the protesters...and seeing what they were protesting.

There was a big Halloween street party downtown this year and as my wife and I walked by the entrance we came across a group of religious protesters chanting and handing out pamphlets. It doesn't surprise me that some people would take exception to the "sexy" outfits that a lot of the girls were wearing at the party. It does surprise me that some people take exception to any costume at all.

I realize that Halloween started as a "Pagan" holiday and that dressing up in costume was believed necessary to ward off evil spirits, but I also understand that it's not the 1500's anymore. It's hard for me to make the connection between a little boy dressed as Prince Charming and celebrating the occult.

Of course I suppose there's a chance that those protesters weren't protesters at all. Maybe they were just an improv group with some really good costumes?

The Theater

Going to the theater is a pretty cool thing to do.

First off, you get to tell people all day long that you're, "Going to the theater"...and if you're anything like me you say it in a super snobby accent. Think Thurston Howell from Gilligan's Island.

Second, you get to watch a live performance. It's something that we rarely do in this day and age, and to me that makes it special. I love the movies, I work in TV, I'm on the internet right now, so I am by no means saying that electronic media is bad. I'm just saying live performances are really cool too.

Going to a play, or a musical in our case, is like the difference between listening to your favorite bands CD, or going to see them live. The live show has a different has more energy. Same thing with the theater.

Don't believe me, go ask Thurston Howell.

Friday, October 29, 2010

The SimpleThings

Sometimes it's the simple things in life that make life so great.

Megan and I went to a restaurant grand opening tonight, and while it's nice to tell people that you're going to something like, it's not as nice as chillin' on the couch with a glass of wine. At least tonight it wasn't.

That's not a knock on the restaurant, it's just that sometimes sitting with your wife and enjoying a glass of wine is all you need.

It was tonight anyhow.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Have you ever noticed how your sense of smell can take you back to a different time and place. It's crazy when that happens...and so fun if it takes you back to a happy time.

Well like a lot of people, my wife and I spent our honeymoon in Hawaii. Not surprisingly it was an amazing 10 days filled with all kinds of highlights. Surfing, hiking, sightseeing, amazing meals and relaxation. And the smell that takes me back to all of that is the fragrance of a blooming Plumeria. Lucky for me the one in this picture sits right outside my front door.

For that I have my friends Dan and Kara Mann to thank. Just before our 1 year wedding anniversary the Mann's (or maybe it's the Menn) gave us a potted Plumeria, complete with a genealogy of how the plant came to be in that pot. When Dan told me what kind of plant it was I got totally excited because I knew the blooms would remind me of Hawaii. He did caution that it would take about a year though for it to bloom and I'll be damned if he wasn't right on.

Here we are just a few weeks past our 2 yr anniversary and I get to relive our honeymoon every time I walk out the front door. Now that's a wedding present!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

You Got Me

302 days into the year and I forgot to take a picture today.


The plan was to take a picture of me and Sue Botos going to lunch today, but we got so wrapped up talking about a charity event that I'm throwing next month that I forgot to actually take one (*Side note...I'm really getting excited about the Charity event and can't wait to announce it on Nov. 1st).

So this is what you get. Me at the end of the night, sitting in front of my computer with nothing but a shoulder shrug to snap a photo of. Hey they can't all be winners...I'll do better tomorrow.

I hope.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Sneak Attack

This is what I was greeted by when I got to work today...a sneak attack. It turns out my co-worker Jenny Cavnar had a visitor this weekend, and that visitor got a little bored waiting for Jenny to finish up at work.

Now I know where the saying "Idle hands are the Devils workshop" comes from.

I'll say this, the attacker was funny. All over my desk and cubicle were little red sticky notes with different things written on them. Some of them funny, some of them creative...all of them amusing.

Congratulations Jason just made my list.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Super Sonic

For those of you that are regular readers, you may remember that earlier this summer I produced a Sonic commercial for the local franchises here in San Diego. We had a blast shooting it and the client loved it, which means we got to work with them again today.

Turns out that the Sonic in Vista is right across the street from a big movie-plex and the guys struck a deal to have our commercial play in every theater before every movie. Pretty cool right? Well in an effort to make it even cooler, we shot a few extra scenes today to help personalize the commercial for the movie goers.

The bad news is the only way to see it is to go the Vista Movie-plex early enough to catch the pre-show entertainment. The good news, that's actually a lie.

Thanks to the wonderful world of the internet...once we finish it up I'll post it on my website

Pumpkin Carving Contest

Tonight we went to the Clarke's 4th Annual Pumpkin Carving Contest and this is the beauty I created. Any idea what it is?

I'll give you a hint, it's not an Apple iPhone.

Unfortunately I don't think enough people really knew what this little guy was either because I only got 2 votes...and one of them was mine. Then again I've never been accused of being an artist, so the lack of votes could have something to do with my execution as apposed to my vision. Whatever it was, I didn't win.

For the record, it's the Android logo.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Huntington's Disease

Like all disease, Huntington's Disease (HD) is brutal. But unlike cancer or Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s, most people haven't heard of HD, and that's part of what made the 2010 Celebration of Hope Gala to benefit HDSA so important tonight.

HD is a “hereditary, degenerative brain disorder that results in the loss of cognitive, behavioral and physical control.” It's kind of like Alzheimer's, Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson's disease all rolled into one. There is no cure, and the really tragic part of it all is that the children of those afflicted have a 50/50 chance of inheriting the gene.

A colleague of mine, the Chargers PR Director Bill Johnston, is heavily involved in the fight against this disease because his wife Romona has it. Meaning, unfortunately, that his children may very well have it as well.

I'm almost embarrassed to say it, but until last night I too knew shockingly little about this disease. That's why I feel so good about having gone to this event...evening though my company paid for our tickets, I am now infinitely more aware of the on-going fight against this disease.

And that counts for something.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Great Party

Tonight on my dinner break Megan and I went to a really awesome event...the 6th annual Chef Showdown Culinary Competition in observance of national domestic violence awareness month. A big name for a big event. My thanks to our buddy Sam for inviting us.

The concept of the event was pretty straight forward: get a bunch of kick-ass restaurants together to make a ton delicious tastings for people, throw is plenty of booze and an Iron Chef style cooking competition and then sit back and watch the money roll in. Obviously the true measure of success for an event like this is how much money was raised for the cause. I have no idea what number might be, so I can only judge the success of the event on how much fun people had at it. Using that scale, it was a 9.75. The only reason it was a perfect 10 was because they weren't handing out gold bars as you left, otherwise it was amazing.

If only all my dinner breaks could be this nice.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

San Diego Seduction

A funny thing happened to me today. I went to a lunch meeting at the East Village Tavern this afternoon to talk about a really cool fundraiser that I am going to be putting on towards the end of November, and guess what I stumbled upon.

Maybe the picture gives it away, but you guessed right...the San Diego Seduction!

For those of you who haven't googled it yet, the Seduction is a women's football team that plays in the Lingerie Football League...that's the LFL to you and me Rusty. As it turns out there first home game of the season is this Friday, and in an attempt to create a little buzz around the event they held a media blitz at EVT today. Only problem was most of the media didn't get the memo. In fact only one station showed up...well two if you count me.

So in the spirit of Title IX and purely in the interest of promoting women's athletics I agreed to pose in a picture with a few of the girls in order to help raise awareness for their sport. Sure it interrupted our meeting and yeah the guys I was with seemed a little perturbed with the intrusion...but that's just the way I am.

I look out for the little guys...and their hot sisters.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Storm Watch 2010

Nothing like the first big rain of the year to make people crazy here in San Diego. Admittedly, I'm the one taking a picture of a wet road while I'm driving, but it's not my fault...I'm actually from this town.

You see growing up in San Diego in the near total absence of rain wasn't the only thing that makes me amazed when water falls out of the sky. It's the medias fault. They are the ones that lead with "Team Coverage" on every newscast and show nothing but raindrops hitting puddles. With powerful images like that littering the news, how can you blame me.

TGI Monday?

No one likes Mondays...not even people who have Monday off, but my Monday started pretty well today. Lounging in a hammock tends to do that.

In an attempt to eek out the last few hours of our anniversary weekend, Megan and I enjoyed breakfast at our awesome bed and breakfast, went for a dip in the pool and of course kicked it in the hammock before heading home.

The funny thing is, unlike Monday's everybody loves a hammock, but truth be told they're really not that comfortable. Don't get me wrong, I'm definitely getting a hammock for our backyard but I might also start to employ the full time services of a masseuse.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Geting Caught in the Rain

For whatever reason, when my wife and I go on vacation we like to ride bikes. It's never anything that we plan and we certainly don't ever "go cycling"...I've just noticed that the last few times we've gone out of town we've ended up going for a bike ride in whatever town we are in.

Today was the first time we have gotten caught in a down the desert of all places! According to my research Palm Springs averages a little more then 5 inches of precipitation a year...or less then a half an inch a month. So the fact that we happened to be riding our bikes when a rain storm hit is actually pretty amazing. In fact it's about as rare as celebrating a wedding anniversary the same weekend a biker convention is in town.

Maybe I should buy a lotto ticket?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Can I Pick 'em or What?

For our 2 year wedding anniversary I decided to take Megan to Palm Springs for some rest and relaxation. After all, what could be more peaceful then a quite weekend in the desert? I don't know...maybe a NASCAR race!

Turns out that Megan and I weren't the only ones celebrating something this weekend, so was the entire biker community of Southern California. Seems I forgot to check whether or not it was "American Heat Motorcycle and Hot Rod Weekend" this weekend in Palm Springs. For the record, it is.

There are bikers everywhere, and true to their reputation they are here to party! The bad news is that makes a romantic afternoon glass of wine a bit less romantic. The good news is the people watching is off the charts. Lots of ass-less chaps, a ton of tattoos and a surprising number of sleeveless jean jackets. Actually it reminds me a lot of Pride Weekend in San Diego.

Now if I could just find my Acid Wash Jacket.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I Have Seen the Future

Apparently I'm on a technology kick right now because I can't seem to stay away from the gadgets. My latest...3D television. It's going to be the wave of the future.

I admit that when I first heard about 3D TV I thought it sounded pretty gimicky, but I've changed my mind. I stopped by Best Buy on my dinner break and stumbled upon this display (what you don't see is the TV I'm looking at), and what I saw was AMAZING!

It reminded me so much of the early days of HDTV and seeing a picture that clear for the first time. 3D does to HD, what HD did to standard definition 10 years ago. The display demo was showing sports and nature scenes (just like the HD demos did a decade ago) and the clarity and detail that I saw was truly jaw dropping. I was literally ohhhwing and awwwing out loud. I even saw a lady take her young child under her arm and usher him away from "the crazy guy in the weird glasses".

Check it out for yourself...but remember where you heard it first.

Friday, October 15, 2010


Whoever first said, "The only difference between men and boys are the price of their toys" knew what they were talking about. What is it about gadgets and technology that we guys find so enthralling? Oh wait I know, it's because it's totally killer...and the Apple store has got be as close to heaven as you can get in this life.

I was at the mall today and for no particular reason I found myself at the Apple store, talking to some team member about the virtues of an iPad. What the hell do I need an iPad for? I'll tell you what for, because it's awesome! Sure it doesn't do anything my laptop can't already do, in fact it does a lot less...but it just looks so cool.

I wish Apple and Verizon would just partner up and get it over with. Then I could get the iPhone, the iPad and any other iThing these geniuses come up with. Get it over with already...jeez.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Drumline Live

If you're from the South then you probably have a pretty good idea of the precision, technique, and sheer athletic ability that go into a kick-ass drumline...but if you're like me, you don't.

Until today that is.

This afternoon I got a lesson in the finer points of playing percussion in a show style marching band...and it was awesome! Lucky for me Mr. Hagetor, my 5th grade band teacher, prepared me well for this afternoon. Okay, maybe "prepared" isn't the word, but at least I knew which end of the stick to hold (ding).

For those of you that saw the movie "Drumline" you know that it's all about moxie for these guys. Sure you have to be an amazing drummer but that's not enough, you've got to be a performer as well. And let me tell you, these guys were showman. In fact the guy two people from my right (your left) was Nick Cannon's drumming double in "Drumline". In other words these guys could perform.

In fact my only regret is that I didn't get to come back for the show tonight and see the entire cast have it. I'm certain that would have been amazing!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What's Your Theory

They say you can tell how important a person is by how much clutter is or is not on said persons desk. The theory goes, the more clutter, the less important. I think this picture says all you need to know about how important I am at Channel 4.

As far as the work Snuggie goes, I'm not exactly sure what they say about that...but it's probably not good either.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


I'm not a "car guy". I can't tell you the difference between a sports suspension and a twin cam turbo drive...I mean come on, I drive Mazda 3. But that doesn't mean I don't know a kick-ass car when I see one...even if I don't know what it's called.

I do know this a Ferrari, I'm just not sure which model. I think it's the "PantyDropper" but I'm not sure. I am positive however that whoever drives this has more speeding tickets then I do.

Somehow I still think they got the better end of the deal.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Pei Wei

Sometimes after a long weekend, which just so happens to follow a long week before that, all you want to do is order take out and sit in front of the TV. One out of two ain't bad.

I didn't really have time to sit and watch TV tonight (part of that long weekend thing) even though I sat in front of the TV when I had my take out. It's a subtle difference but I think you get the point.

Sunday night is the perfect night to just sit and wonder they put so many good shows on the tube.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

1st place...among the runner-ups

I grew up playing sports and now I cover professional athletes everyday as part of my job, so spare me the witty retorts about coming in second place...I've heard them all.

"Second place is the first loser."

"If you're not first, you're last."

"There are no points for second place."

To be fair my wife would probably tell you that I fall closer to Ricky Bobby then Mr. Rogers on the competitive scale, but the truth is I was so stoked be the runner up in the 4th annual Malashock Thinks You Can Dance celebrity fundraiser that I haven't been able to stop smiling. cheeks are starting to hurt.

I had so much fun and am so thankful to have been a part of the event. For that I owe a debt of gratitude to my friend Megan Kennedy for getting me involved. Of course I couldn't have done it without my dance partner Shanna who was unbelievable to work with and such a good teacher. Most of all though I have to thank my wife for putting up with all the jazz hands, open vests and the constant Tango music.

In case you were curious, I lost to a 68 yr old women...but damn could she dance.

The Morning Show

My first paid gig in the TV business was editing video for the morning show at our local NBC affiliate here in San Diego.

I hated it.

First off, I'm not really a big fan of local news in general...too much death and destruction for my liking. Secondly, while editing video is a great skill to have learned, I desperately wanted to be on camera...not sitting behind it in an editing suit. Third, the hours were terrible...2am to 9am. Blah.

On Friday my dance partner Shanna and I performed on the Fox 5 morning show to promote our charity dance competition the next day. Turns out my instincts were correct, I liked the morning show much better when I was on camera.

It didn't hurt that we got to show up at 8:15 either.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Hooray for Hollywood

On Thursday I was in Hollywood for the afternoon because that's what us TV people do...and even though you may have heard the rumors, I steadfastly deny that I was there having lunch with George Clooney. As it so happened I was on Hollywood BLVD and it got me thinking...who the hell is Onslow Stevens and why the hell does he have a star on the "Walk of Fame"?

Turns out acting was in Onslow's blood. The son of a character actor he was born in LA in 1902 and went on to appear in more then 80 films...most of them as a character actor himself. Pretty good stats, but who decides is they are worthy of Star Status?

Good question. Here's how it works according to my buddy George.

First you have to have worked in your field (TV, radio, stage, motion pictures, or recording) for at least 5 years. Then you have to be nominated. This can come from, studio, manager...whatever. The nominations go to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce Walk of Fame Selection Committee and each year the choose about 20 stars that they deem worthy. If selected you have to agree to two things. First that you will show up to the ceremony where your star is unveiled. Second, that you will pay $30,000 for it's creation and the general up-keep of the walk of fame.

So there you have it, maybe someday Onslow and I will be neighbors.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Renaissance Man

Easily the biggest compliment anyone could pay me would be to call me a Renaissance Man. I love the idea of being a "jack of all trades" and it really is something I've tried to embrace in my life. Whether or not chopping kindling in the backyard with a hatchet qualifies as being a "Renaissance Man" I'm not exactly sure, but I do know this. We live in a time when the average person can't really do anything for themselves.

Sure most of us can program a DVR or find out what Paris Hilton did last weekend by doing a Google search, but there aren't many of us that can fix a screen door anymore. Let me be clear, I love technology...I mean I'm writing a blog aren't I? It's just that, like most things, I believe in balance. Hence the Renaissance Man thing.

The definition of a Renaissance Man is somebody with limitless capacities to learn, and that's exactly what I strive for in my everyday life. Not only do I want to be able to link my blog to my facebook page, I want to be able to chop some wood and build a fire for my wife as well.

Enter Sandman

Just because the Padres season is over doesn't mean Channel 4 shuts down operations. In fact it's quite the opposite...especially this year. For the past 4 years our "off season" has been consumed by a nightly 30 minute SportsCenter style show aimed at the local San Diego sports scene.

This year we upped the ante with a second show and moved the times around a bit. Now instead of one show at 10, we have an early show at 6:30 and a late show at 11 pm. The long term benefit of the move is that now we don't have to compete against the "Dancing with the Stars" of the world or any of the other network prime time juggernauts.

The short term effect is that now by the time I get home my wife is usually already in bed trying to get some sleep so she can wake up and be at her job by 8:30 in the morning. That's the only bummer about the "off season", because of our different schedules the wifey and I don't get as much hang time as we would like during the week. Don't get me wrong, I know a lot of people have it way worse then this and I'm certainly not trying to compete with anybody on this...I'm just saying given the choice, I would choose to be home earlier.

That's all.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Welcome to the Neighborhood

I realize that I blog about food a lot here. But guess what, I eat every single day...a couple of times, so there you have it.

Tonight I ate at the Neighborhood downtown. For those that live in San Diego but haven't been to the Neighborhood yet...go. If you clicked on the link above then you probably figured out that they specialize in hamburgers, but they also have a ton of really great micro brews. But that's not all, they also have a speakeasy in the back. The burgers and the beer I know about first hand, the speakeasy is more of a mystery. All that I know is that getting in takes some work.

First off, you have to know the right person to even have a chance...I haven't met that person. Secondly, even if you know that person you're timing has to be right because they only let a handful of people in at any giving time. Finally, to gain entry you have to take an oath swearing that you will not reveal the true purpose of the speakeasy. Okay I made that last part up...but the rest of it is true. I know because my wife Megan has been there before...apparently she runs in a slightly more impressive circle then I.

Maybe that's what everybody means when they say I've out kicked my coverage when it comes to her?

Monday, October 4, 2010

A Great Run

There is no way around it, today's loss for the Padres was tough to take. Obviously the loss ended their season but it also ended a great run for a team that was picked by just about everybody (myself included) to finish at or near the bottom of the National League West. As it turns out they were in it until the final day of the season and that's something to be proud of.

Don't get me wrong, it might take a few days or maybe even a few months to put it all in perspective, but once you do it will be impossible not to smile. I don't care if you're a Padre fan or not, the 2010 Friars were underdogs from the start and they made it exciting until the end. That's America's story. The team with the second lowest payroll in the majors quite literally shocked the baseball world for 6 months, and unfortunately just ran out of gas at the end.

It was a fun season to be a Padre fan with a lot more ups then downs...but if I'm being honest it's hard not to play the "what if" game right now. The one thing I do know however is that it was a great run.

Thanks guys.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


So much for being able to fall back on an indoor soccer career. On Saturday the 10-time major indoor soccer league champion San Diego Sockers held an open tryout, and I went out for the team...kind of.

As you well know I am a soccer player, in fact I play indoor soccer once week. So when the General Manager of the Sockers asked me to come out and do a story on the tryouts, I thought the best way to do that was to tryout. What a stupid decision that was.

Apparently nobody told the coach that I was out there as a member of the media to give his team some publicity. Either that or they did tell and he didn't care because he worked my ass off...and then he cut me.

Guess I better find the number for that truck driving school in Florida now.

Long Day

Anybody who has ever flown from coast to coast understands that travel-day is going to be a long day. It's not a novel realization and I know I'm not the first person to experience it...but it's my blog and this is what my day was like.

I was up at 6:30 AM local time, standing in the rain by 7 as I waited 20 minutes to finally hail a cab. There are more then 13,000 taxis in NYC and when it rains, they are seemingly all full. Know what else was full, the roadways. I know it's a common complaint in Southern California to bitch about how bad everybody is at driving in the rain...and it's true, the rain slows down the traffic in San Diego. I guess I had just always assumed that wouldn't be the case in a place used to foul weather. A place like say, New York City.


The 40 minute ride to JFK turned into a 2 hour and 7 minute ride past accidents and flooded streets, meaning I was roughly about 30 minutes late for my flight. "Luckily" for me my flight was delayed more then 3 and half hours. Yippee!

Thanks to headwinds that flight took roughly 6 and half hours, getting me to San Diego a little before 4 PM local time. Cab home, watch the "Britney Spears Glee" on my DVR, then head into work for the 7:10 start of the Padres - Giants game. Finish work at 11, head over to the Waterfront bar to pick up Megan and eventually get home and into bed by 1 AM. With the time change that adds up to a 21 and half hour day.

Like I said it was a long one.

Friday, October 1, 2010

"Life as we Know It"

One of the all-time great gigs in TV is getting to work the junket circuit. For those that don't know what a "junket" it is, my computer dictionary defines it two ways.

1.) a dish of sweetened and flavored curds of milk, often served with fruit.

2.) an extravagant trip or celebration, in particular one enjoyed by a government official at public expense.

For our purposes here the second definition is a little more accurate when it comes to describing my junket experience. Somehow, someway I ended up on a list a few years ago...and not the bad kind of list either. This list gets me invited to 2 or 3 sports movie junkets a year, and let me tell you it is a racket.

All the movie studios bake in marketing costs to the budget of their films. Part of that budget goes to flying people like me to New York City, putting us up in a fancy hotel, letting us see the movie and then giving us access to the stars of that movie. In return, we talk about it on TV.

Like I said, it's a racket.

The movie that I will be talking about next week is "Life as we Know It" starring Katherine Heigel and Josh Duhmal. It's actually a pretty good romantic has nothing to do with sports...but it'll make a date night enjoyable.