I really wanted the Steelers to win. (pictured here is the view of Heinz Field, formerly Three Rivers Stadium, from Mt. Washington on the North/West side of the burgh. Downtown is just out of range to the right of the stadium, which shows how seriously these people take football. Unlike Foxboro, which is an hour from Boston, The Steelers play in Downtown... in the heart of it).
We fired up the fry-o-lator and made wings -- best non-restaurant wings I've had in ages. I rushed home from Charles and Margaret's good bye luncheon, missing only part of the first quarter... I was aghast that the Pats pulled out in front but thrilled that the Steelers came back with their collective teeth bared and their attitudes adjusted after a very crappy halftime show. Gah, I hate Sheryl Crow.
But they lost. And while I certainly are happy for the Patriots, I am also incredibly sad because I think the Steelers were a FAR better team this year, and by far one of my favorites. The media was totally behind the Steelers, favored by a ton of points. And the Patriots made monkeys out of everyone.
I guess my sister's friend Rob stands to win some money just because the Pats made it past the AFC championship and are going to the big dance.
So at least there was a real highlight during the day here. And I am happy for them. But...
I am happy for the Pats. Honest. If anyone other than the Steelers would be going to the Super Bowl, heck. Sure. Go Pats. At least it isn't the Dolphins or those God Awful Ravens. And they had a hell of a story this year. I mean, everyone wrote them off completely. Me especially. Year after year they've broken my heart, so I gave up routing for them. I still wanted them to win, but they kept inventing new ways to lose. Last year they were like 5-11 and this year at the start no one said they'd beat that. Then Bledsoe gets injured after they start the season poorly. Brady steps in and things start clicking together. Win after win after win, week after week. Astounding. The fire was lit under the arses of the erstwhile sarcastic bubbleheads known as sports commentators, and the Pats start marching up the AFC East ladder.
Bledsoe stands on the sidelines injured and sad, Brady keeps winning. Bledsoe's job security becomes fodder for the keyboards of commentators and writers in AND outside the sports field.
Today, Brady ends up getting injured, so Bledsoe gets the chance to save the day. And he does. Amazing. Totally Amazing. Brady may have a broken ankle, so there is a good chance he won't get to play in the super bowl.
How's that for a fine howdy-doo. The proverbial kick in the pants as it were. He brings the team this far and may not get to play THE game of his rookie career. Gets the team this far and whammo.
At the end of the game, they kept in tight on Drew Bledsoe's face, and he was crying. His chin was quivering, his eyes were all misty. He bit his lip in a Clintonesque way. He was truly moved, shocked, astonished, and amazed. It was so evident. So obvious. A man who doesn't know what his job is going to be in August now has the chance to save the day and become the hero instead of the Goat that everyone has believed he is to this point.
It's a great story. And the Eagles and Rams are playing right now, and we shall see who the Pats will face, and we shall see if Drew will be that hero. I wish him well. Goodness knows I am glad for them, and I sure ain't routin' for any NFC team here.
Geoff tore some of his wallpaper off his wall today and I am pissed and angry. I can't believe he did that. It was the one truly 100% finished room in my house, and now it's screwed. So now I have to tear it all down and redo the damn thing. Good thing I'm friggin' laid off! Hello Home Despot. Need some paint. And the kicker is that I'm going to have to mud his walls entirely because the bottom half is Dark Dark Blue... unless I want to paint the whole room that color now. I still am going to have to mud where I remove all the wallpaper trim. Damn damn damn.
Well. Other things... this weekend on the whole was nice. We did go out to dinner on Friday night. The sitter was a big hit with the kids. They liked her a lot and she states that she's willing to come back (!) so that was a relief. She reminds me of my roommate from college a little... she's from Eastern PA and has a very Laurel's First Year at College haircut, and glasses, and she smiles the same, uses her eyes. So it brought back some interesting 17 year old memories for me.
Dinner itself was a blast. Expensive beyond belief, delicious, relaxing. Good food, bottle of wine, excellent service... I love this place but wish it wasn't so dern 'spensive. We then went to a movie of Doug's choosing... Gosford Park. Meh. It wasn't nearly as funny as the commercials made it out to be. A murder mystery set in the English Country Estate of a pompous old fart hated by everyone. Great performances by Clive Owen and Helen Mirren, and too many pictures of Ryan Phillipe's pouty full lip and puppydog eyes. It would have been a much better movie if they shortened the buildup to the murder. Establishing the characters and their inner workings went WAY too long and didn't add to anything. The plot after the murder and the happenings therein were much more interesting, and sort of exciting. I thought it was going to be more like Wooster and Jeeves (Stephen Fry is in this as a bumbling inspector, very funny, the only truly funny thing in the movie) but it was more like Masterpiece Theatre and just as dull.
The beginning of the movie is interesting, when the servants/valets come to the house with their Lords/Ladies/important rich snobby folks, they show the goings on Upstairs and Downstairs (so much like the aforementioned Masterpiece Theatre)... and the contrast between their worlds is amazing. The lifestyles, the attitudes, the working class strength that carries SO much of the British nobility that without their maids and valets it is obvious these people would perish, yet they get no respect. It was a beautiful rendering of the period - the clothes, the lifestyle, the furnishings, the way a manor home worked with all its inner mechanisms... that I liked. But overall I wouldn't recommend it.
Saturday we went to Dave and Gretchen's house to hang with them and our buddy Dan, Mr. Humanity Moment. It was a nice visit. Initially Doug didn't want to come, he had a list of things that HAD to get done this weekend and was bemoaning them all, but suddenly changed spirit and came with. It was nice to come with him. So often we get invited places and he just is anti-social, doesn't think he'll like these people or like their work or have anything in common with them. And then the end result is everyone is communicating well and telling stories and it isn't dull for him and we have a great laugh or two, and it's awesome. Dave and Gretchen have a stunning home (no lipsticks were mushed here by the way)... and it was so nice to see them, as well as nice to see Dan. I miss him so much sometimes. Dave and Gretchen have a beautiful little boy and it was a blast to play with an 18 month old for a while. Someone who doesn't tear wallpaper off the wall. mmmmmmeh.
We were on our way out when another former coworker, Susan, and her daughter and husband came over, so I got to see her for a brief flash. I always enjoyed hanging out with Susan, she was so much fun to work with... so it was great to catch up.
Gretchen told me that the company I used to work for (her husband was my boss, and after I left she started working there...) is shutting down in April, so there is going to be a big BIG alumni reunion kind of thing -- everyone who ever worked at this company invited back for drinks and a larf and some good memory sharing... so that will be fun.
I loved working there, loved working for Dave and loved doing the stuff I used to do. It makes me sad to know they are shutting down, and it makes me even more sad to think about the company I just got laid off from, but there's nothing I can do about either.
Oh, by the way, I had mentioned the other day I'd gotten my hair cut. My daughter took this picture of me today after church, as well as a couple other pictures that I took over the last two days. And, it occurs to me now, I didn't take any pictures of Dan. I would have liked one of him and me... oh well, hopefully there will be another time...
Me with my short coif... it is almost all one length except right in front where it angles down. Next time I get it cut, it'll finally be all one length, like this:
And it is scary how much me and my kid look alike. I think. Only sometimes I'm the bigger ham.
We went to the car wash on the way home Friday night because it was like 50 degrees and the car needed it badly. Doug aims James Bond Style, yo.
Tomorrow my friend Mare from High School is coming to visit me. Her husband has a ton of family in Western Mass, so every couple of years they try and come east. Currently they live out in Dana Point, California! I haven't seen Mare since Jessica was about 2. She came out 2 years ago at this time, but I had the flu so badly that I told her there was NO way I wanted her to come visit. She's expecting her third kid in March, so she'll be fully big and preggo. I plan on taking her over to Newburyport for a little walk'round, and some time without her 2 boys... she's got her hands full!
Mare and I met in Kindergarten. She remembers more about my childhood than I do! She tells me anecdotes about stuff we did in brownies, and places we went, and I don't remember them. So I'm sure going to try and get some more stories from her. She was incredibly athletic and I was bookish and uninvolved... we went our separate ways for a while, not being really close friends, until I reconnected with her in high school band and in Campus Life, the youth group that I went to in high school... she was an active member, and it was great to rekindle that friendship which we'd shared for so long. She's a very involved evangelical Catholic, doing lots of stuff with her church and her family and her husband's bike store (owned and operated by them!) so she's a great woman and one whom I hold in high esteem.
Well, I'm going to remove myself back to the family. I will try and write tomorrow of the wacky adventures of a pregnant lady (Mare) and a lady who looks pregnant (me) but isn't.