Tuesday, January 21, 2014

A Fair Weather Fan



I've always considered myself fortunate that I am married to a guy who doesn't watch sports, because it's not something that usually interests me.  So many men are obsessed with sports viewing, including my father as I was growing up.  Every night and all weekend, he would sit in "his" chair and watch whatever sports were being broadcast on the only television in the house.  If the game wasn't televised, he'd listen to it on the radio.  He was a particularly big fan of the NY Mets and the NY Giants.  The constant background clatter of sports throughout  my childhood and teen years turned me agains the whole idea.

In my adult life, we've moved so many times that it's hard to pick a team and stay with it.  So we generally maintain a mild passing interest in how the local teams, whichever they may be, are doing.  But occasionally, and only when they are doing exceptionally well (because let's be real here - winning is ALWAYS more fun than losing), we may actually watch a game and may actually care who wins said game.  This has happened here and now with the Denver Broncos as they get ready to go to the Super Bowl.

I would definitely classify myself as a fair weather fan, not the type of fan who is there, win or lose, for my team.  I became interested in the Broncos because of Peyton Manning, team quarterback.  He has such a good back story - he was an outstanding quarterback for Indianapolis for many years, but was injured a couple of years ago.  He had four neck surgeries and was out of football for two years while he recovered.  His old team didn't want him any more so he became the Broncos quarterback for the last two years.  Amazingly, at the ripe old age (for football) of 37, he's had his best year ever and has broken dozens of football records.  With a story like that and everyone in Denver talking about Peyton and the Broncos, I couldn't resist watching him play.  I have to admit that when he throws and a receiver catches, it's a thing of beauty.

A couple of months ago, my daughter came to Denver to photograph Peyton.  When I mentioned this, it was as if she were taking the Pope's picture.  People here are crazy about him.  Just walking down the street in Denver, you can find at least half of the people you pass wearing an orange shirt with number 18 - Peyton's number - on it.  I thought, as a joke (because I knew he would never wear it), I would buy Barry a #18 shirt, until I saw the price - $99.99.  Never mind.  Yet, it seems like just about everyone in Denver has one.

These photos were taken within two minutes of  each other to show that I'm not exaggerating about how many people wear Peyton Manning shirts in Denver.

So we are "United in Orange" as the Broncos head to my home state of New Jersey for the Super Bowl.  Hopefully, we are afflicted with a very temporary ailment and will go back to not caring at all about sports in about two weeks.


Thursday, January 2, 2014

2014

I've never been able to overcome a childlike excitement when a new year rolls around. It's an opportunity to review what I've accomplished in the year just past (not much) and what I hope to achieve in the brand new year.  It's always a new chance to succeed, even when experience dictates that this is not likely to happen.

As I get older, time seems much more precious, and I don't want it to pass without acknowledging the joys of life.  Unfortunately, with joy also comes sadness.  As I prepared my holiday cards this year, I was sad to eliminate some names of those who are no longer with us.  And, I'm afraid, this will happen more and more as I and others age.  I've yet to know anyone immortal and yet our finiteness is something that we don't even want to think about, let alone dwell upon.  So the best antidote is to try to be in the moment and enjoy every ounce that I can wring out of life.  I will dedicate the next year to emulating my puppy Annie, who seems to enjoy every day to the fullest.

I wish you all a healthy and joyous new year.  I haven't written on this blog as much as I used to.  That is due, in part, to having less new things to experience in Denver as we passed our third anniversary here.  After moving from state to state, I feel like it takes about two years to feel comfortable some place, so we have passed that mark.  Once I stopped posting on a regular basis, then I felt like I had to write something brilliant and insightful to make up for the lack of posts.  This is a high standard that I can't seem to measure up to, so I don't write at all.  Please forgive my laziness as I think of my friends in various places quite often and fondly.

I believe that 2014 will be a year of great change for us, and change is always exciting.  We have yet another move to look forward to and, after that, I hope that we can stay in one place for a while.

So, I would be remiss in failing to report the national news story that is happening all around me here in Denver.  New years day marked the first legal sales of recreational marijuana in Colorado.  As we walked Annie early morning on January 1st, there was already a line at a dispensary two blocks away from our apartment.  As we walked further, there were new rules of conduct posted on the Sixteenth Street Pedestrian Mall.  This will indeed be an interesting social experiment to watch, and I definitely have a front row seat.  So I will let you know how it goes.

Here are two photos from new years day:

The sign for the dispensary is on the side of the building with the green cross.  Initially, only dispensaries that previously sold medical marijuana will be licensed for recreational use.


Sixteenth Street Pedestrian Mall

Thursday, September 5, 2013

End of Summer Vacation

We spent last week in Estes Park, Colorado, which is the home of Rocky Mountain National Park.  It's scenic, so not much to say and will let my pictures do the talking.














There was a double full rainbow but it was raining too hard to stand outside and take the photo of the whole thing.


Annie walked around with a pine cone in her mouth, looking like an idiot.


Friday, August 2, 2013

Is it possible to be too cute?




Well, the summer is fleeting, and, for me, it has definitely been the Summer of Annie. Not much else has been accomplished as our puppy settles into our family.  There is much to do on a daily basis to care for a puppy - 3 meals a day, a couple of walks, some training, some playing, some holding chew toys to stem the chewiness of teething, taking her to the vet, groomer, puppy school, etc.  But she is so worth it.  Her puppy exuberance is delightful, and she is a big, big presence in our lives.

Since we live downtown, we must walk her where there are sometimes a lot of people. When she was smaller (she's now 4 months old and about 12 pounds), we couldn't go more than about two steps without someone stopping us to ask if they could pet our puppy or to tell us (and Annie) how adorable she was.  It was so common that when Annie heard the words "so cute", she actually answered to them by greeting the person who uttered them.  She was so used to being stopped that, if someone walked by without acknowledging her, she would turn around and look at them as if to say "didn't you see how cute I am?"

It actually got tiresome to make so little progress as we were walking.  By the time the twentieth person (and I'm not exaggerating) asked to pet her or what kind of dog she was, I wanted to brush them off but couldn't be that rude.  It made me understand what it must be like to be a celebrity who is constantly barraged by fans seeking a photo or an autograph.  So it made me wonder if there is actually such a thing as being too cute.

Now that Annie is getting older, she isn't stopped quite as much, although we still get a lot of comments as we walk by folks.  I wonder if she is disappointed in the drop in interest.  It also made me think about what it must be like to be a person who is terrifically good looking and how it must feel to be this person as he or she ages.  I personally wouldn't know what this experience is like but for those who trade on their good looks in the early part of their lives, getting older and less attractive must be truly devastating.  Perhaps they, like Annie, think that they were just "too cute" in their good years.

For the first two months we had Annie, all that was required of her was (1) that she look cute and (2) that she pee and poop in the right place.  But now that she's maturing, she is expected to follow commands and actually behave like a good dog.  What a bummer for her but she is slowly accepting that her cuteness will only get her so far now.  I wouldn't say that she is a star pupil in puppy school, but she is coming along.  

All in all, we are happy to have this cuteness in our lives and apologize for boring the non-dog loving readers.