ericw 's BLOG

ericw 's BLOG

Last updated on Mon Mar 17 14:51:05 EST 2003

This is my silly blog file...
Entries are sorted from the most recent, to the oldest...

Date: Mon Mar 17 14:51:05 EST 2003
Subject: The snow is finally melting....

Well, there is still snow on the ground, but at least it's melting now. We are able to see large patches of dead lawn now, and the biggest pile of snow in the yard is only (ONLY?) three feet tall. It's officially 65 degrees now. On this day last year, it was 43. The temperature is supposed to bounce around between 40 and 65 for the next few days, but I guess we'll see what really happens. (I suspect there is still one more snowfall to go...)

And of course, since it's so nice outside, everyone is sick (Except Mercedes, who has been told "You CAN'T get sick, we need you well to drive us to the doctor's office." (She really hates that.

And our ice rink will probably hang out a good week after the last of the snow is gone. It's melting, but it was so deep in the corners, that it will easily outlast the snow on the lawn, and maybe the snow piles on the street where the plow made it's piles of snow.

Now we understand why people move AWAY from the Northeast section of the country.


Date: Fri Mar 14 11:41:22 EST 2003
Subject: blog maintenance...

As somebody pointed out to me, I don't keep this blog updated all the time. (He writes something in his everyday, whether he needs to or not.)

I put stuff in here when I have something interesting to talk about. If there's nothing new or interesting, then I don't feel compelled to put something in here. If interesting stuff happens, then I put stuff in.

In other words, check back every few weeks, not every few days. ;-)

Date: Fri Mar 14 11:38:43 EST 2003
Subject: I hate the snow!

We had two (or more, it's hard to tell) inches of snow on Thursday, March 11th, 2003. They cancelled school before school started so the monsters got to (had to?) stay home all day to drive Mercedes mad!

Why is it STILL snowing? Darn it! It's March, the snow is supposed to be gone by now, not still coming down.

Apparently this is the worst winter since the winter of 1995/1996. As far as I'm concerned, it's the worst winter in 41 years! We won't see the lawn again till April at this rate.

And the worst thing is that it warms up just enough, just often enough that it isn't worth trying to maintain our ice rink in the backyard.

Date: Fri Mar 7 22:38:06 EST 2003
Subject: One more note on skating...

One last note for the night...

Just why did we go skating tonight in Newburgh?

Because at the start of the week I told Eddie that if he was "With the program" all week long, we'd go skating, just him and me, on Friday night. I figured he'd blow it by Wednesday or Thursday, and I wouldn't have to take him. Well, he almost blew it on Wednesday, but he managed to get control and do whatever it was we asked him to do (dishes or putting his laundry away or something like that).

I feel kind of bad that it turned out to be such a sad skating night.

Next week, we try Brewster, I hope we have better luck there.

Date: Fri Mar 7 22:21:32 EST 2003
Subject: Adults and skating...

This is Kays' figure skating journal. She has a weblog about adults and figure skating that I found interesting and funny. I sent her a note about it, and when she checked our our website, she liked the backyard rink so much, she put a link to it on her "links page".

Some of her stuff is particularly accurate about attitudes towards adult skater.

Date: Fri Mar 7 22:09:10 EST 2003
Subject: Skating in Newburgh....

Well, we finally tried skating in Newburgh (see below for address) on a Friday night.


They don't start selling tickets until 7:00 for the 7:15 session, and there are well over a hundred people waiting to get tickets. There's no line control, so everyone is pushing and shoving trying to get ahead in the line. (Apparently there is usually line control, but none tonight.)

Friday nights are when all the teenagers show up to skate. They're old enough to want to be out on their own for the evening, but too young to drive, and their parents don't trust them to go to "Johny's house for a few hours at night while his parents are gone". (That was a run-on sentence).

So there are all these teenagers hanging around, skating either poorly, or at way too high a speed for the number of people there. The rink guards (and I use that term loosely) were among the worst offenders of skating too fast for the conditions. Now I understand the rink guards have some leeway in how they skate, and I DID see them helping some of the little ones on the ice, but it was still too crowded for the way they were skating.

AND, to top it all off, they had a hockey game right before the public session and they dind't fix the ice between the game and the session. So, basically, we were skating on snow. Eddie was ready to go home after about 20 minutes on the ice. I managed to get him to stick around until after the Zamboni came by. (And it wasn't even a Zamboni, it was some imitation Zamboni. How cheap). We then were able to skate for 15 minutes before it became apparent that it was hopeless.

And, then...(There's more?) On our way out, we see a Newburgh police officer hanging out in the lobby. I can only guess that they have had problems there before, and have the policeman standing there "Just in case".

Also, it was $7.00 for me, and $4.00 for Eddie. Thank gosh we have our own skates, since they had the yuckiest rental skates I have ever seen. They were some kind of beatup "Lake Placid" plastic skates. (I've seen these retail for about $25.00 at the discount web sites).

Will we ever go back? That's a good question. If we get discount tickets we might, but NEVER on a Friday night.

Also, their freestyle sessions cost $10.00 each if you buy a package of 12 tickets. Mccann charges us $6.50 each for a package of 10.

Somebody remind me to send a nice letter to the folks at the Mccann Ice Arena to say thanks for such a nice rink. (I have rants about them too, but more along the lines of "There aren't enough public sessions", so I guess I can't complain too much.

Date: Fri Mar 7 10:22:12 EST 2003
Subject: Skating Costs

Just a note on how much it costs to skate in public skating sessions....

Brewster Ice Arena$6.50
Ice Time Sports in Newburgh, NY$7.00
McCann Ice Arena in Poughkeepsie, NY(Our home rink)$3.00

Lake Placid Olympic Rink

Sky Rink at Chelsea Piers, New York City

Wollman Rink in Central Park, New York City


Rockefeller Center in New York City

Amherst Pepsi Center (Near Buffalo)

B.I.G. Arena, Albany, Ny)

Thank Gosh that the Dutchess County helps to pay for our Home Rink (Mccann) or else we would never be able to afford all the ice time we use.

Date: Thu Mar 6 23:28:57 EST 2003
Subject: Please send us email

If you read this stuff, please send us an email to .

I'm more likely to keep this updated if I know folks are reading it.

Date: Thu Mar 6 23:28:00 EST 2003
Subject: Hockey

Interesting note: The "Learn to play Hockey" program, which requires that you allready know how to skate, costs $200 for 10 sessions. This basically teaches you the basics of playing hockey. The Spring house league is about $300 for 10 games and (maybe) 10 practices).

Hockey gear costs a lot too. 20 for shin pads, 20 more for elbow pads, 60 for the skates (on sale), 60 for the helmet, 20 for "Hockey Socks", 60ish for the chest/shoulder pads, 20 for a sweatshirt (He doesn't have any, and they need to be a size too big.) and I don't know how much for hockey pants. That's at least 260 (+ hockey pants) for something we aren't sure he'll stick to. At least the hockey pants aren't mandatory for the "Learn to play" program.

Why couldn't Eddie have picked something simple like baseball to be interested in?

Date: Thu Mar 6 23:02:12 EST 2003
Subject: Learning to skate

The kids started ice skating in January (Thanks Grandma!) Eddie and Tina have progressed to the "Basic Skills class" at the Mccann Ice Arena in Poughkeepsie NY, while Allie has decided that skating is not her sport.

I've started skating too. I learned (the hard way, and not very well) in elementary school. I did some more in (Well, a little) in high school and college. I was just good enough to not totally embarress myself on the rink. It turns out that now that I'm 41, I have the "whatever it is" to be decent at it.

The problem though, is that I have to fight for everything that I learn. For instance, it took me four weeks of lessons, and 8 skating sessions to be able to do crossovers. Eddie learned without any lessons (Except from listening to me for 10 minutes) and two skating sessions.

I hate my son.

Luckily I can still skate better than Tina. But she is such a good skater that she wants to skate by herself, and not have to be accompanied by anyone. now that it's March, the crowds are thinning out enough that she can do that. (Hey, she's 6 years old, and significantly shorter than most other folks on the ice. We worry somebody just plain won't see her.)

But once in a while, she decides that she wants to skate with Daddy, and holds my hand while we skate around the rink.

Sometimes she is just too cute.

Date: Thu Mar 6 22:55:34 EST 2003
Subject: It SNOWED again today....

It's March 6th, 2003, and we had 7 inches of snow in Poughkeepsie NY today. It was kind of funny, since the weather report said 3-6 inches, starting in the afternoon. So, I got the kids ready for school, and sent them out the door, expecting an "Early Dismissal" day.

WHOOPS! It turns out they cancelled school. Two ladies out for their morning walk told Allie that school was cancelled, and "Doesn't anybody in your house listen to the radio in the mornings?"

Also, that 7 inches fell on top of the 8-12 inches that was still sitting on the lawn from the last few times it snowed. Everyone keeps telling us that winters aren't usually this bad, but that does little to make us feel better. as far as I'm concerned, this has been the worst winter in 41 years. I'm beginning to think that we won't see our lawn till April.


Date: Sun Dec 29 00:19:41 EST 2002
Subject: Yet more rants

Well, I finally sent out emails to everyone who'd ever sent us an email (That I thought wasn't a SPAMMER ;-)

I wonder how many hits on our website we'll get in the next 48 hours....

Christmas was good to us (Thank you Santa ;-) The kids got lots of stuff, Barbies, Kellys, books, legos, and Gamecube games. I got "Godzilla, Destroy All Monsters Melee" and Eddie and I have been playing that the past few days. (Instead of me playing mechwarrior Mercenaries with my clan ( ComStar Guard )

Allie got a bunch of art stuff too, so she's been bust drawing and making plastic flowers.

Mercedes got here art stuff early, and has been playing with plasticene clay lately. I'll get some photos up at some point.

More sometime..

Date: Fri Dec 20 12:16:29 EST 2002
Subject: Cafeterias at work....

Why do cafeterias at work always have lousy food?

I mean really....

Some cafeterias are better than others (My current one in Fishkill NY is barely edible, the one I had in Albuquerque always made me sick.

Is there some law that says they have to be bad? If I forget my lunch, I have to go offsite to eat, or go hungry.

I hate that.

Date: Fri Dec 20 08:41:09 EST 2002

Subject: It's raining, and the kids are "sick"

It's raining and the kids are "sick" today. It's the last day before Christmas Vacation (For some reason, probably political) it's officially called Winter Break.

Since it's the last day before vacation, I guess it's ok that the kids are "sick", since half the school is going to be missing today anways. All the kids had their parties earlier in the week too. I guess the school expects people to be trying to travel today. ;-)

Date: Thu Dec 19 16:42:08 EST 2002

Subject: This is my own BLOG

This is my very own BLOG! (Something like a diary, only different).

Why? Because I can! (Because I'm an "Uber-Geek" as my boss refers to me sometimes.

So, really, why?

So I can mention things that need to be mentioned (and indexed) on the web.

So people know that we like "A Cat's Place" in Fishkill NY, and always take our cats there for vet car.

So that people looking on the web for pizza will see at least ONE reccomendation for Eddie's Pizza in Wappingers Falls, NY.

That's why.