Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Rosie O’Donnell’s long awaited return to series television premiered last night on The Oprah Winfrey Network and all I have to say is I’m Damn Glad you are Back Rosie!

The show is a mash-up of The Tonight Show meets The Oprah Winfrey Show meets Univision’s Sabado Gigante. There is an opening stand-up routine, a question and answer session, a Broadway style musical number, celebrity interview, and the show finishes with a game show.

The Rosie Show is pure Rosie through and through and it is easy to remember why we connected with the Rosie O’Donnell Show 15 years ago. She is real, funny, cheesy, and entertaining every-woman. She is a child of Broadway and retro-television shows like Carol Burnett, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, Truth or Consequence, and the Ed Sullivan Show.

No one has ever connected to an audience the way Rosie does - not her new boss Oprah, who appeared to be above the audience, nor the other successful daytime lesbian Ellen DeGeneres. Rosie is one of the audience and has always had an exuberance and passion about her that no one else brings to the table. She is even more relatable all these years later now that she has been in the trenches as a parent for the past 17 years – something that is unique to her when compared to her peers.

Having had the pleasure of meeting, and being in the company of, Rosie several times, I can say that the warmth, compassion, and humor the audience experiences onstage with Rosie is how she is in public as well. She relates to the every day and is possibly more at home with the average stay at home mom then she is with high dollar celebrities, as she has lived the past 10 years as a suburbanite with only fleeting moments of celebrity.

While I loved all things Rosie about the show, there were elements that distracted me – none of them having to do with its host or the content, but more the bricks and mortar.

The set of the old Rosie O’Donnell Show was bright, cheery and upbeat, and it was shot in a much smaller space. The audience always felt like they were participants in the show. That intimate feeling in missing with the move to Oprah’s cavernous state-of-the-art studio. While Rosie’s connection to the audience is always evident, it is only because she is who she is. A smaller personality would get lost in the auditorium like studio.

For the opening stand-up routine, Rosie is positioned in front of a satin curtain backdrop. Prior to the premier, I had seen the curtain in promotions and I wrongly thought it was meant to keep the real stage a secret until the debut yesterday. I was wrong. The curtain appears cheap and almost an afterthought, and I think it needs to go. I would prefer they darken the stage behind her, or at least move the curtain back 10 feet back.

During the interview portion with Russell Brand (more on that in a bit) I found the two overstuffed chairs lost on the massive stage. While it is a beautiful stage, there needs to be a backdrop of some sort that shrinks the size of the space surrounding her and her guest during this segment of the show to make it more intimate. For the big numbers, or whenever necessary, the full stage can be opened.

I suspect the lighting of the show was an important consideration in pre-production. Since the show is sandwiched between daytime and primetime the mood of the show had to have been of concern. Daytime shows are usually brighter and late-night talk shows are typically darker. In the end it appears a more nighttime feel was chosen for the Rosie Show, and since it was still light outside when I watched the show, I’m not sure of the right choice was made.

As everyone who know me is well aware, I am a huge admirer of Rosie. I think her humor and wit are matched only by her compassion and heart, but for the life of me I do not get her new celebrity crush -Russell Brand. While I cannot put my finger on it, there is something about him that … well… creeps me out. I find it difficult to understand him and have an even worse time looking at him. He is like an unattractive and filthy Farrah Fawcett - all hair and teeth - and always in need of a bath.

With a stable full of big named celebrity friends and acquaintances, an “A Lister” such as Rosie should have pulled out the big guns and had a big name sitting across from her on her inaugural show . My choice would have been:

- One of the Ryans -Gosling or Reynolds
- The Casts of Glee or Modern Family
- George Clooney (who I am not crazy about – but still)
- Lady Gaga
- Hilary Clinton
- The Queen of Entertainment – Barbra Streisand
- Or Tom Cruise who she ended her last show with

The problems with the lighting and the staging will not keep me from watching the show – and are just my opinion. I look forward to getting home from work each evening and plopping down to watch the new Rosie Show on DVR. I couldn’t be happier she is back. Her brand of humor and heart have been sorely lacking in television since she left. This time around the koosh balls may be missing but what remains is a good time capped off with confetti.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Can't someone shut up this media whore? She has nothing useful to say!


Tell President Obama to use his 14th Amendment powers, raise the debt ceiling without Congress, end this crisis, and tell the House Republicans to go take a hike.

For weeks now, House Republicans have been holding America hostage, and threatening to wreak havoc with our credit rating and our economy. They have refused to raise the debt ceiling unless their extremist policies are enacted, policies that place a higher priority on defending tax loopholes for corporate jets than on preserving Medicare and Social Security.

Enough is enough. Mr. President, it is time to use your 14th Amendment powers to end this crisis.

The 14th Amendment to the Constitution clearly states that the validity of the U.S. government's debt "shall not be questioned." Leaders from President Clinton1 to Representative James Clyburn to have called upon the president to invoke these powers.

Republicans, apparently unable to read, have tried to claim that doing this would be unconstitutional. But these same Republicans have held America hostage for too long. It is time for President Obama to move ahead without them, and use the powers given to him by the Constitution. If the Republicans really want to take their claims to court, let them. But right now, it's time to end this long, national nightmare.

Enough is enough. Tell President Obama to use his 14th Amendment powers to end this crisis.

Click the title to sign the petition


I found the below article on Facebook, posted by an organization called "People Against the Tea Party." It was written by a man named Joshua Stewart. You can click the title to read it in it's original website.

On July 23, 2011 a terror attack rocked Oslo, Norway, killing 93 innocent people. The speculation began from the moment it was reported. Everyone was convinced a Muslim was behind it. Then a suspect was captured. He was both white and Christian.

From that moment forward, in typical Western fashion, people came out of the woodwork trying to distance him from Christianity, even though his words said otherwise. Even some atheists, for whatever reason, were trying to separate Christianity from this act of obvious terrorism.

This highlights a fundamental hypocrisy that we have seen time and time again in the West. Had this man been brown-skinned with an Arabic name, he would have automatically been labeled a Muslim fanatic and a terrorist.


This scene has played out many times before from Tim McVeigh to Joe Stack to John Bedell to the Hutaree in Michigan to Jared Loughner. When a person is a White or Anglo European Christian, he is not labeled a terrorist. Instead, he his actions are often dismissed (not justified or excused) as by that of a “mentally disturbed” or “crazy” person. He is never a terrorist, nor is his Christian faith ever mentioned. Even the Hutaree, who were investigated by the Anti-terrorism Task Force, were only called a “Christian militia” by the media, and their faith was the centerpiece of their actions.


It begs the question: why is this? Why does Western society strive to distance Christianity from these occurrences, when they also are the first to call Muslims who perpetrate the same acts as terrorists?


Let it be stated that I am not saying that al-Qa’ida or Richard Reid are not Islamic terrorists. Of course they are. But, in the same breath, the Hutaree and Andres Breivik are Christian terrorists. If you are a Christian, it does not mean you condone his actions and his being a Christian does not reflect on you.


The problem is, with religion it’s not difficult to find scriptures to justify these actions, whether it be in the Qur’an or the Bible.

In the Bible, God commands the decimation of entire cities, and Psalm 137:8-9 reads, “O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy shall he be, that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us. Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.”

People say that Jesus preached a message of love and tolerance (even as many of these same people are hardly loving and tolerant of, for instance, homosexuals and atheists). Fair enough. Let’s say that is 100% accurate. That doesn’t make him not a Christian. He may be a “bad Christian” but he is still a Christian nonetheless.


The “no true Scotsman” argument is one of the biggest Christian hypocrisies in which Christians are judging who is a true Christian and who is not. Many do this whether the person in question be Andres Breivik or a formerly devout Christian-turned-atheist (like Dan Barker, for instance), when Jesus commanded them to not be judgmental. (Matthew 7:1-2; John 8:7)

They do this because they are ashamed that such occurrences can be aligned with their faith, and rightly so. In the same way, many non-extremist Muslims try and claim the Taliban are not real Muslims.

Whether they are distorting scriptures or not, the fact remains that they do not have to look far to do so. And that’s frightening. Religion has inspired violence and bigotry since its earliest incarnations. To try and say it doesn’t, or that religious extremists aren’t real adherents of said faith is doing a giant disservice to all mankind.


In closing, let’s look at an excerpt from Breivik’s manifesto:

“I trust that the future leadership of a European cultural conservative hegemony in Europe will ensure that the current Church leadership are replaced and the systems somewhat reformed.” He further states. “We must have a Church leadership who supports a future Crusade with the intention of liberating the Balkans, Anatolia and creating three Christian states in the Middle East. Efforts should be made to facilitate the de-construction of the Protestant Church whose members should convert back to Catholicism. The Protestant Church had an important role once, but its original goals have been accomplished and have contributed to reform the Catholic Church as well. Europe should have a united Church lead [sic] by a just and non-suicidal pope who is willing to fight for the security of his subjects, especially in regards to Islamic atrocities.”

Now let us examine this again with some minor substitutions:

“I trust that the future leadership of a Arab cultural conservative hegemony in Europe will ensure that the current Mosque leadership are replaced and the systems somewhat reformed.” Furthermore, “We must have a Mosque leadership who supports a future Jihad with the intention of liberating the Balkans, Anatolia and creating three Islamic states in the Middle East. Efforts should be made to facilitate the de-construction of the Shi’a whose members should convert back to Sunnism. The Shi’a had an important role once, but its original goals have been accomplished and have contributed to reform Sunni Islam as well. Iran should have a united Khilafah lead [sic] by a just and non-suicidal Imam who is willing to fight for the security of his subjects, especially in regards to Christian atrocities.”

If it was a Muslim who wrote the latter statement and then committed acts of violence including a bombing and shooting spree, he’d be labeled an Islamic terrorist hands-down and rightly so. Look at Nidal Hassan, for example. Let’s stop the hypocrisy and label Breivik what he is — a Christian terrorist.

Joshua Stewart

Let me add, though many people think I am, I am not an Aetheist.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


‎"If you can look at a crime where everything points to one answer and not see it, you're a dumbass. And if you can look at the deficit and not realize that the rich stopped paying taxes, you're a republican."~Bill Maher

Monday, June 27, 2011


Way to go David Frum. He now sees the error of his ways and realizes it isnt the gays that are ruining the institution of marriage. He isn't saying who is, but at least he isn't blaming the homos.

Editor's note: David Frum writes a weekly column for CNN.com. A special assistant to President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2002, he is the author of six books, including "Comeback: Conservatism That Can Win Again," and is the editor of FrumForum.

Washington (CNN) -- I was a strong opponent of same-sex marriage. Fourteen years ago, Andrew Sullivan and I forcefully debated the issue at length online (at a time when online debate was a brand new thing).

Yet I find myself strangely untroubled by New York state's vote to authorize same-sex marriage -- a vote that probably signals that most of "blue" states will follow within the next 10 years.

I don't think I'm alone in my reaction either. Most conservatives have reacted with calm -- if not outright approval -- to New York's dramatic decision.


The short answer is that the case against same-sex marriage has been tested against reality. The case has not passed its test.

Since 1997, same-sex marriage has evolved from talk to fact.

If people like me had been right, we should have seen the American family become radically more unstable over the subsequent decade and a half.

Political impact of same-sex marriage

Clinton: Fight for LGBT rights ongoing Instead -- while American family stability has continued to deteriorate -- it has deteriorated much more slowly than it did in the 1970s and 1980s before same-sex marriage was ever seriously thought of.

By the numbers, in fact, the 2000s were the least bad decade for American family stability since the fabled 1950s. And when you take a closer look at the American family, the facts have become even tougher for the anti-gay marriage position.

Middle-class families have become somewhat more stable than they used to be. For example: College-educated women who got married in the 1990s were much less likely to get divorced than equally educated women who got married in the 1970s.

What's new and different in the past 20 years is the collapse of the Hispanic immigrant family. First-generation Latino immigrants maintain traditional families: conservative values, low divorce rates, high fertility and -- despite low incomes -- mothers surprisingly often at home with the children.

But the second-generation Latino family looks very different. In the new country, old norms collapse. Nearly half of all children born to Hispanic mothers are now born out of wedlock.

The case against same-sex marriage has been tested against reality. The case has not passed its test.

Whatever is driving this negative trend, it seems more than implausible to connect it to same-sex marriage. How would it even work that a 15-year-old girl in Van Nuys, California, becomes more likely to have a baby because two men in Des Moines, Iowa, can marry?

Maybe somebody can believe the connection, but I cannot.

I remain as worried as ever about the decline in family stability among poorer Americans. But as for same-sex marriage, my attitude follows the trajectory described nearly 150 years ago by the English writer Anthony Trollope in his novel "Phineas Finn."

Two of his characters are discussing a proposed reform that has just been defeated in Parliament. The author of the reform is understandably dejected. His friend consoles him by pointing to the future:

"Many who before regarded legislation on the subject as chimerical, will now fancy that it is only dangerous, or perhaps not more than difficult. And so in time it will come to be looked on as among the things possible, then among the things probable; -- and so at last it will be ranged in the list of those few measures which the country requires as being absolutely needed. That is the way in which public opinion is made."

By coincidence, I am writing these words on the morning of my own 23rd wedding anniversary. Of all the blessings life has to offer, none equals a happy marriage. If proportionally fewer Americans enjoy that blessing today than did 40 years ago, we're going to have to look for the explanation somewhere other than the Legislature in Albany.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of David Frum.

This article was on the CNN website today.

Monday, June 20, 2011



If I had a talk show and a team of writers, I would be Bill Maher! This guy is so spot on and I cannot understand why these solutions to our problems are not as clear to everyone. The worst part is the rubes that are voting Republican are cutting their own throats - well except the rich who have ascots covering theirs.

Sunday, June 19, 2011


Below is a small piece of Jon Stewart being "interviewed" by Chris Wallace on today's Fox News Sunday. To me it felt more like he was being interrogated and Chris Wallace was hoping the outcome of his reparative therapy would be full conversion to conservative think.

If you watch the entire interview (below is only a minute or so) you will see that Chris Wallace was there with an agenda - to draw parallels between what the two men do for a living, but Jon Stewart would not concede.

Chris Wallace comes off humorless and about as stiff as a piece of cardboard.

Saturday, June 18, 2011


Former Labor Secretary Robert Reich succinctly explains the problems with the economy (brought to you by moveon.org).

Contrary to the load of crap the Republicans shovel down our throats so often that many of us believe it, the rich do not create jobs, the demand for goods and services from the middle class do, and as long as there is no demand, there will be no new jobs.


I have long neglected this space on the web that I call my blog, although I have been meaning to get back to it for some time. Facebook has become the new blogging space for many but I would prefer it return to being a place where I keep in touch with friends and family, therefore, today I have instituted a moratorium on political posts on Facebook. I will no longer be posting the countless political articles I read daily. Instead I will be posting them HERE.

I do not promise; however, to restrict myself completely. If I see something funny about some right wing cracker (like Sarah Palin) I reserve the right to post it on Facebook for all to provecho-itize.

I am hoping this change will help motivate me to start writing again and not just re-posting things of interest that I see.

Wish me luck.

Sunday, February 27, 2011


Due to early forecasts of cold and rainy weather for today, February 27, 2011, I canceled the Ghetto and Gowns Gala - our annual celebration of all things Oscar.

That is the first call I got right in the 2011 Academy Awards race. If the temperature were to dip any lower outside we would be in the middle of a blizzard.

Below are my thoughts and predictions on some of the actual awards to be handed out tonight at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood:


Black Swan - I found this movie difficult to sit through. How good is a movie you watch through your fingers?

The Fighter - Although not my top pick, it is right up there. I walked out of this movie completely satisfied with what I had just watched and was blown away by the four lead performances: Mark Wahlberg, Amy Adams, Christian Bale and Melissa Leo. All four were superb.

Inception - I did not see this movie and have to admit I don't think I am smart enough to see it.

The Kids Are Alright - I know some people raved about this movie, I, on the other hand thought it was a snoozefest - and rather pointless. While I believe female sexuality is more fluid then males, I thought the affair between Julianna Moore and Mark Ruffalo was unrealistic and a way for Hollywood to make a "gay themed" movie that was somewhat palatable for straight audiences.

The King's Speech - WINNER - While I enjoyed this movie I do not feel it should win.

127 Hours - This movie was good, perhaps long, but the only reason to see it was because of James Franco's performance.

The Social Network - This was the best movie of this past year and I think it should win. I walked out of the theater completely satisfied, like I had just pushed my chair away from a delicious 7 course meal. I loved this movie.

Toy Story 3 - I cried like a baby the last 10 minutes of this movie. Very good movie but it will win in the animated category.

True Grit - I didn't see this movie but it doesn't have a chance.

Winter's Bone - This is one of the best movies of this past year and I am happy to see that it got nominated as I doubt many people saw it.


Black Swan Darren Aronofsky - I found this movie difficult to follow and watch at times. So sorry Darren!

The Fighter David O. Russell - Good job and thanks for showing up but you can stay in your seat.

The King's Speech Tom Hooper - If it is a "King's Speech Sweep" then Tom has a chance - and that will be his only reason for winning.

The Social Network David Fincher - WINNER - Great movie, great direction!

True Grit Joel Coen and Ethan Coen - Is it only me that finds it strange when the Coen brothers are co-nominated for things? Shouldn't only ONE be able to be the best?


Javier Bardem in “Biutiful” - I am sure he is good in this and I meant to see it (and didn't) but he doesn't have a chance.

Jeff Bridges in “True Grit” - Although I didn't see this movie, I don't think it matters as he won last year.

Jesse Eisenberg in “The Social Network” - Jesse was very good in this movie but I'm not sure he isn't this nerdy and awkward in real life.

Colin Firth in “The King's Speech” - WINNER - Solid performance

James Franco in “127 Hours” - Possibly the best performance of this past year and if Colin Firth hadn't perfected his stutter, James would be going home with Oscar. The entire film is him and he carries it well.


Annette Bening in “The Kids Are All Right” - WINNER - In recognition of her body of work, Annette will walk away with Oscar.

Nicole Kidman in “Rabbit Hole” - I saw the trailer of Nicole being great actress Nicole. I am rarely impressed with her and do not think she should have won for The Hours.

Jennifer Lawrence in “Winter's Bone” - This was a spot on performance by a relatively unknown actress and she should be very proud of the work she did on this movie. While her performance is definitely worthy of a Best Actress win, she doesn't have a chance.

Natalie Portman in “Black Swan” - Most likely to upset Annette Benning and I would not be unhappy in the least. While the movie is too strange for my tastes, her performance is amazing and I would be happy to see her walk to the podium.

Michelle Williams in “Blue Valentine” - If I was able to officially cast my vote it would have been between Jennifer Lawrence and Michelle Williams. This girl nails it every time, and in the movie, although I thought her character was the problem in the film (as opposed her Ryan Gosling's), Michelle's performance was SPOT ON!


Christian Bale in “The Fighter” - WINNER - One of the few cases that I think I will agree with the Academy voters. His performance was transformative and sublime.

John Hawkes in “Winter's Bone” - I don't think the Oscar should go to anyone who looks dirty (or toothless) on screen. Good performance though.

Jeremy Renner in “The Town” - The Town is tied with The Social Network as my favorite movie of the year (and it just arrived from Netlix). Jeremy Renner's performance was fantastic and any year he wasn't competing against this year's Christian Bale performance might have nabbed him the gold.

Mark Ruffalo in “The Kids Are All Right” - Nice to look at but anyone could have played this role.

Geoffrey Rush in “The King's Speech” - Geoffrey's performance is the heart of this movie and definitely Oscar worthy but against Christian Bale's performance this year, he doesn't stand a chance.


Amy Adams in “The Fighter” - Definitely Oscar worthy and if Melissa Leo screwed herself out of an Oscar with her "For Your Consideration" advertisements, Amy Adams will be the winner

Helena Bonham Carter in “The King's Speech” - Her first normal person role in recent memory, but this performance was not the best of the year.

Melissa Leo in “The Fighter” -WINNER - This is my choice of the year (along with Amy Adams). Melissa Leo was outstanding as the rough around the edges mother to Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale in The Fighter. With more screen time she could have qualified as Best Actress as possibly won.

Hailee Steinfeld in “True Grit” - Sorry I didn't see your movie Hailee, but I don't think you have a chance. Plus, with a name so close to Seinfield, I probably would not have voted for you anyway.

Jacki Weaver in “Animal Kingdom” - I Netflixed this movie and then didn't even watch it. I hope you were good Jackie.


How to Train Your Dragon - Sorry, stay in your seat!
The Illusionist - I haven't seen it yet but plan to see it.
Toy Story 3 - We have a WINNER

Those are a few of my picks.....and the Oscar goes to.................

Sunday, January 16, 2011


After the tragedy last week in Tucson, I started to write a reaction and couldn't do so without angry words and pointing fingers. I'm glad I waited until today when I received this video of Sam Tsui and AHMIR's cover of one of my favorite songs - John Lennon's Imagine.

Saturday, January 1, 2011


Two days before my tenth birthday, my grandparents took me to Disneyland. I remember going on nearly every ride and although I thought my grandparents were a tad over protective, I had a wonderful time. Since then I have visited the park two more times, and as an adult it doesn’t hold the same magic. The only way to enjoy it is through the eyes of on innocent and two or three months ago I promised Noelle, a lover of all things Disney, we would take her for fifth birthday.

On Monday, we left for California and Disneyland, and although there were a couple of hiccups along the way, the trip was a resounding success.

We set out for Southern California at 9:45 Monday morning and 40 miles west of Phoenix we got stuck for 45 minutes in a long line of traffic due to road construction. Three hours later we approached the Coachella Valley (Palm Springs) and saw snow on the tops of the mountains, San Jacinto is on the left and San Gorgonio (the highest peak in Southern California) is on the right.

After the six hour drive (stopping only for lunch and gas), our first stop was Belmont Shore (Long Beach). I lived in this seaside community from July 1996 to August 1999 and then returned from August 2001 to April 2002 and have many fond memories. It was only fitting that this be the place where Noelle first experienced the Pacific Ocean, and although it was cool outside (low 60s) she frolicked and wanted to build a sand castle.

It had been a long day so I promised her a rain check and we drove downtown Long Beach to the Hyatt.

Our initial intent was to leave Phoenix on Tuesday, drive to Long Beach that night, go to Disneyland on Wednesday and stay in Palm Springs afterwards, returning home Thursday. Unfortunately, the weather changed our plans.

I had been watching the weather forecast on a daily basis (as it seemed to change daily), and on Sunday the forecast called for rain on Wednesday, therefore, we decided to leave a day early and go to Disneyland on Tuesday.

Tuesday was a beautiful day, bathed in sun and blue sky. It was forecasted to be the nicest of the week and we took our time getting ready for the big day. We arrived at Disneyland to find that it was sold out. While sitting in traffic waiting to get into the park I stopped a policewoman and inquired and she informed that the park had been sold out the day before as well, but they had allowed visitors into California Adventure (Disneyland’s sister park) and then at 6:30 they were allowing guests to cross over and enter Disneyland.

Although this wasn’t how I envisioned our day - it was worth a shot. There was no way I was going to disappoint Noelle. She had been looking forward to this trip for so long, so we paid the $15 to park our car, boarded the bus to the park, got outside the gates to Disneyland and were turned away, being told that an hour earlier they have stopped offering the California Adventure/Disneyland arrangement.

Discouraged, we returned to Long Beach to regroup. We ate lunch at an old favorite of mine in Belmont Shore, Super Mex, and while there we decided to extend our trip a day and visit Disneyland on Thursday, as it was forecasted to rain on Wednesday. We then did some shopping and took Noelle to get her hair cut. Afterwards we went back to the hotel and Noelle decided it was a time for a photo shoot.

Wednesday, Noelle’s actual birthday, was rainy and we didn’t do much. We went out for breakfast and then back to the hotel. Noelle decided it was time for another photo shoot.

That evening we joined my friend Tova, her mother Joyce, and Tova’s two boys, Reece and Ty for an evening at the Aquarium of the Pacific, located across from the hotel. It is a spectacular facility with several outstanding exhibits. I lived in Long Beach when it opened (and was a charter member for a few years).

Noelle had met Tova's boys the day before and insisted that Reece was a girl because has long blond hair. I repeatedly tried to explain that boys can have long hair too, and Tova also gave it a shot, but Noelle still insisted that Reece was a girl. She couldn’t quite understand that boys can have long hair too.

I purchased our Disneyland tickets online to ensure we wouldn’t have a repeat of Tuesday’s fiasco and Thursday morning we got up early and arrived at the park at 9:15.

Our initial destination within Disneyland was the Princess Fantasy Faire - where the princesses spend their time, but along the way there the Merry-Go-Round caught Noelle's eye.

Then it was off to the Princess Fantasy Faire where Noelle was too shy to join the festivities but instead sat next to me smiling from ear-to-ear.

Once the Princess coronation was over we hopped aboard the Disneyland Railroad for a trip around the park.

Afterwards Noelle announced she wanted to get her face painted – BIG MISTAKE. Almost instantly, her mood changed and she wanted to go home. When I asked her why she wanted to leave she said because people were staring at her. Thirty minutes, and some cotton candy later, her mood returned to normal and she wanted to stay.

The crowd at Disneyland was huge. It was like New Years Eve at Times Square. There was no where to walk without stumbling over people and the lines for the good rides were over two hours each. Even getting a bite to eat was an endeavor and while walking around trying to find a sit down restaurant (I think there is only one and you must have reservations) we stumbled across, and toured, Tarzan's Treehouse - forty years ago when I first visited Disneyland it was called the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse (named after the Disney movie).

After grabbing a quick bite we resumed our expedition. The following clip shows some a small glimpse into the crowd.

The next ride Noelle wanted to go on was the Mad Tea Party (the tea cups), but just as we were about to get in the line, she spotted the Dumbo ride - the Tea Cups would have to wait. Dumbo had a line with an approximate wait time of 50 minutes. It went rather quickly and Noelle was very well behaved waiting her turn. While we were in line, a little girl in front of us, between three and four years old, got her head stuck in the fence - Looked painful!

After Dumbo it all becomes a blur to me now. I know that Fettit took Noelle on the Mad Tea Party ride and then there was the Christmas Parade (for some reason my video recorder did not record the parade). It was during the parade that we got to see nearly every Disney character – Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Donald and Daisy Duck, Goofy, Pluto, Chip and Dale and several of the princesses again. Sleeping Beauty was absent from the parade – we think she was taking a nap.

Once the crowd cleared from the parade we were nearly the first in line for Storybook Land Canal Boats. Noelle seemed to enjoy it but it was a snooze. If you watch the following video be prepared to fall asleep (and get a cavity from listening to the guides too sweet voice).

At this point the temperature was dropping from chilly to cold and we decided it was about time to leave - after one more ride on the Tea Cups.

Noelle was an ideal travel companion and we haven't stopped talking about her, and the trip, since we got home. Fettit keeps asking when she is coming over to spend the night. He misses her after spending those five days together.

It was such a nice trip - one of many - with more to come.


2010 is in the history books and it’s on to 2011 – which means it is time for some RESOLUTIONS:

- I would like to revive this blog and write something witty, clever, or insightful at least on a weekly basis.

- Today starts a return to eating healthily – Whole, low carb, and low fat

- It’s time to incorporate some physical activity into my routine. TIME TO MOVE!

- To quit smoking (for good) before I have my BIG birthday in July