10.29.2006

Trick or Treat mood music

If you are planning on driving around for Trick or Treating or if you are just going to be at home handing out candy on Tuesday, turn on WILL-FM to listen to spooky music. Tune to 101.1 in Champaign, 106.5 in Danville, and 90.9 if you are farther out. From 5-8pm on Halloween (this Tuesday) they will have a wonderful Halloween soundtrack for you to enjoy.

I've listened in the past and heard songs I recognize from movies---the Omen, Vertigo, and more. It's fantastic and *really* puts you in the mood for Halloween.

Happy Halloween!

10.24.2006

University Library annual book sale

The University Library's annual book sale will be held on Wednesday and Thursday (Oct. 25 and 26) from 9am to 4 pm in the east entry of the Main Library.

Hardbacks: $3
Paperbacks: $2
Trade paperbacks: $1
Special edition books and prints priced accordingly.

All proceeds will benefit the collections.

Ick

So, there's this photoshopped picture of a local boy by Leo Buchignani that's been on the Orange and Blue Observer website for about 6 months. It accompanies an article about the local IMC. One local blogger suggested we should give the guy who made it a break cuz he's in China. Apparently, that really isn't a problem.

A friend of child's parents wrote a letter to the OBO staff.

Leo has responded.

10.23.2006

Foudini's

A good friend of mine and his wife and business partner just had their business written up in the N-G. Foudini's is a business that has been around for almost a decade in one form or another.

Well, actually, my friend, Jim, has worked at a *ton* of places in town since I first met him over 15 years ago.

But after all that, I think he started running Foudini's out of that place that's Ruby's now (if it's still Ruby's) and he was based out of the kitchen at Gully's for a while as well. He's had a tent at the Taste of C-U before, but I think he moved to mostly catering for a while. Oh yah, he also owned Tommy G's and ran Foudini's out of there for a while.

After he sold the bar a few months ago, my friend Jimmy started hatching his ingenious new plans.

So...Foudini's is now open in Tolono on Thursday nights until 8pm. It's located in the old Sugar's coffee shop right on 45. If you are driving from Champaign, it's south on 45 (Neil St.) to Tolono and it's after the Monical's but before the traffic light. It's in the building on your right before the gas station. You can drop by and pick up dinner to go---and it's yummy. You can get the Family Meal with 5 sandwiches, 2 sides (usually stuff like baked beans, potato salad, pasta salad, chips, and stuff), 6 jalapeno corn muffins, and a 2 liter of soda for $20. Now *that's* a deal.

They also sell individual meals (about $5.25) and they have 1/2 grilled chicken and other stuff from time to time. I had the pork sandwich---pork that Juan, Jim's business partner, said he cooked with applewood smoke. Sometimes you can get a pork tenderloin that's rock hard and tough, but Jim's partner told me he *knows* how to cook a pig. He's right. It was juicy and tender and delicious. I ate half the meat before I even started on the sandwich. They also have hamburgers and pulled pork, but they ran out of pulled pork early last week, so go before 7pm if you want the pulled pork.

They grill the food on a huge grill out in the parking lot all day. You can order ahead at 217-485-5630 or you can order it when you arrive. They have limited indoor seating. There's a counter and some tables. Jim's wife, Christie, is in the process of changing the decor, so if you are a large group (more than 4) you might want to get it to go. Lots of people order for carryout.

Jim also recently purchased the Pesotum Hardware store building and plans to open a bar there after the catering season---I mean tailgating season is finished. I have every confidence it will be a success.

Course, the fact that I'm friends with he and his wife might taint my vision. Why don't you go try out his food and let me know if I'm biased or not?

And make sure you tell them you read it on a blog for my own personal enjoyment....

10.19.2006

Postal Art Cards

An artist is giving away his art. He's turned them into post cards and if you request them, he'll send you a package of 45 cards---9 copies of 5 different cards. And he'll mail them to you free.

All he asks is that you send him some postage after you receive your package.
Nine full sets of all five Postal Art Cards sent USPS First Class in a plain brown envelope to your home at no cost. Please share them with friends. When you receive your cards, you may wish to send me postage stamps equal in value to the $2.55 postage required to mail them to you. The return address is on the envelope. You are free to keep the cards and not send postage. You will be elevated to Electoral Delegate status, although you must live out your life knowing that you are a scoundrel. You are free to send stamps equal to or exceeding the $2.55 postage necessary to mail the cards to you. Doing so elevates you to the status of Electoral Delegate and Distinguished Patron. You may live happily knowing that you have done what you can to further this project of freedom, hope, and peace. The balance sheet will be updated on a nearly regular basis and at the End. We began with postage for thirty offers. When the pot is empty the offer expires.

Interesting stamps are preferred.

The waxpaper envelope[s] at the Post office are nice. They keep the stamps from sticking in side the envelope.
I'll be sending some stamps this weekend.

They were originally done with enamel on glass with toothpicks.

Yah, toothpicks. The artist explains his project a bit here.
If these paintings are an accurate representation of the circumstances and direction of our nation, then we have much to fight. Is our government collecting names and information to compile a list of the disloyal? Who would be so foolhardy as to put their name, address and the same of a friend on these cards and then put the cards in the public mail? Will buying these cards earn you a place on the List? Will mailing them gain you special attention from the authorities?
He's got suggestions for what you can do with his cards. Put them on magnet paper and put them on your fridge. Put 24 cent stamps on them and leave them at coffeeshops for people to pick up. Mail them to your congressional representatives.

I'm pondering a collage....

10.16.2006

Free Hugs

Maybe so, maybe not

Interesting article in the NYT yesterday about a look at census figures regarding unmarried versus married couple households. Apparently, married couples are now a minority in American households. Here's a few highlights:
The American Community Survey, released this month by the Census Bureau, found that 49.7 percent, or 55.2 million, of the nation’s 111.1 million households in 2005 were made up of married couples — with and without children — just shy of a majority and down from more than 52 percent five years earlier.

...

The census survey estimated that 5.2 million couples, a little more than 5 percent of households, were unmarried opposite-sex partners. An additional 413,000 households were male couples, and 363,000 were female couples. In all, nearly one in 10 couples were unmarried. (One in 20 households consisted of people living alone).

And the numbers of unmarried couples are growing. Since 2000, those identifying themselves as unmarried opposite-sex couples rose by about 14 percent, male couples by 24 percent and female couples by 12 percent.

...

Some of the biggest gains in unmarried couples were recorded in unexpected places. In the rural Midwest, the number of households made up of male partners rose 77 percent since 2000.

...

A number of couples interviewed agreed that cohabiting was akin to taking a test drive and, given the scarcity of affordable apartments and homes, also a matter of convenience. Some said that pregnancy was the only thing that would prompt them to make a legal commitment soon. Others said they never intended to marry. A few of those couples said they were inspired by solidarity with gay and lesbian couples who cannot legally marry in most states.
It appears this downtrend in marriage isn't anything new. According to the article, 84 percent of households in 1930 were married couples and in 1990 that had shrunk to 56 percent. Also, married couples haven't made up a majority of households in the under 25 bracket since the 1970s, but now that has increased to the under 35 age bracket.

I am not married and I'm not sure I would get married in the future. I'm not religious anymore so I'm not interested in participating in a religious rite. The only things I would be interested in is choosing who would make medical decisions for me and perhaps other legal aspects like spousal benefits and property inheritance.

I'm also glad to see that some couples also don't marry in solidarity with those who are legally *prohibited* from being married. I know some made fun of Brad Pitt's remarks essentially stating this very reason for not getting married, but it looks like he's not alone.

The ugly truth about "beauty"

Found via Exploding Aardvark.

10.12.2006

Do Over!

Ok---let's try this again. Prairiebiker has announced another attempt at a CU Blogger Bash.

Saturday, October 21
7pm at Boltini's, downtown Champaign

Looks like 6 or 7 people have already confirmed they will attend. I can't get there until around 9:30, but I'm gonna stop by then and see if anyone is left standing.

Internets Phone Tree Activated!

If you have a blog here in CU, post a notice on your blog so everyone who reads *your* blog will read it and hopefully post it on *their* blogs and so on.

10.08.2006

Learn something new everyday

Not for the squeamish. Apparently, Rick the-P-is-silent Santorum has entered the realm of urban slang. His last name is now redefined and used as slang.

This will have to enter my vocabulary immediately.

10.06.2006

My idea of a fun Friday night

Apparently, WILL-TV, our local PBS station, is running debates on Friday nights. I missed the first two, but it looks like some of the rest should all be interesting. If you don't know your State House or Senate districts, this pdf will list your precinct under the corresponding races.

Tonight, we have Naomi Jakobsson (D), Rex Bradfield (R) and Tom Abram (Green) who are all candidates for the 103rd State House race.

Next Friday, Tim Johnson (R) and David Gill (D), candidates for the 15th Congressional district race, will debate.

On October 20th, the debate will involve candidates from the 52nd State Senate race Mike Frerichs (D), Judy Meyers (R) and Joseph Parnarauskis (Socialist Equality).

October 27th will be a governor candidate debate between Rod Blagojevich (D) and Judy Baar Topinka (R).

On the first Friday in November, the final show before the election, there will be a roundtable discussion with journalists and political science professors.

If you aren't really up on what's going on with local races, here's your chance. It looks like they have the audio available for download on their website after the show is over, so you could listen later if you miss the show. Plus, each live Friday show is repeated on Saturday at 5pm, but if you watch Friday night, you can call in and ask the candidates questions at 217-333-1070.

I'm wondering why the Green candidate for the governor's race, Rich Whitney, isn't included in the October 27th debate. Perhaps I'll write an email and ask that very question....

10.05.2006

Energy efficiency and ecological design events

I got this announcement on a listserv today. Perhaps some of you might be interested....

e-co Lab Hosts Training and Symposium

e-co lab, a local non profit Community Housing Developer, is hosting an Energy Efficiency Training Session and the 4th Annual Ecological Construction Symposium on October 13-15, 2006.

The Energy Efficiency Training on Friday October 13, 2006 is from 8AM to 4PM at e-co lab's office at 110 S. Race St., Suite 202 in downtown Urbana.

The training is intended for local individuals, non-profit community groups, and for-profit construction professionals. Learn about methods and techniques that, when implemented together, make homes or commercial buildings that uses 90% less energy than standard, are economical to implement and are nearly fossil fuel independent! The training is sponsored by City of Urbana/Cunningham Township.

Suggested Donation: $25 for individuals and non-profits, $100 for professionals. Materials, refreshments, and continental breakfast will be provided. You can download registration forms here.

The 4th annual Ecological Design Symposium will begin Friday night with a keynote presentation by the architecture firm Farr Associates on the planned green residential redevelopment of the Kerr Ave. site in Urbana.

With presentations on Saturday and tours on Sunday the symposium will present and investigate different local design examples employing concepts based on creating an overall beneficial relationship with interrelated and surrounding aspects. These examples will span the fields of ecosystems and permaculture design (Peter Bane and Rob Scott), passive architecture and cradle to cradle (Katrin Klingenberg and David Stecher of e-co lab and Julie Birdwell of New Prairie Construction, Inc.), waste & water management (William Bagby of Green Island Sustainable Community), renewable energy technologies (Bill Fabian of Midstate Renewable Energy Services) and societal design strategies (Mark Enslin of the School for Designing a Society and Danielle Chynoweth of the Urbana City Council).

According to e-co lab Executive Director Katrin Klingenberg, "Our challenge is to shine light especially on the green construction field, its surrounding fields and its economic potential for the US building sector. We propose that the situation, based on the predicted increase of oil prices, offers an opportunity for local businesses to anticipate economic growth possibilities and jobs in a rising environmental market. By presenting local cutting edge projects, we hope to inspire others to explore the green business opportunities in their field. Together as a community, we can take responsibility for the environment locally as well as reducing global warming and enhancing economic well being for all."

The tours on Sunday will conclude with a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the Fairview House, e-co lab's premier project, encompassing the "triple bottom line" of sustainable construction: environmentally friendly, economical, and socially responsible.

The 4th Annual Ecological Construction Symposium will be held at the Urbana Civic Center, 108 E. Water St., downtown Urbana, on Saturday with Friday and Saturday night sessions held at the Lake House at Crystal Lake Park (intersection of Race and Park Street, Urbana).

Suggested Donation: $25 for individuals and non-profits $100 for professionals. Materials, refreshments, and a continental breakfast on Saturday will be provided. You can download registration forms here.

For more information on the 4th Annual Ecological Construction Symposium, the Energy Efficiency Training, or e-co lab in general, contact Katrin Klingenberg or Dave Stecher at 217-344-1294 or info@e-colab.org. More information can also be found at www.e-colab.org.

Look what I got!



There's still room for a "Don for Mayor" sign....

10.02.2006

I feel bad for him, but....

Richard McBride was arrested for a DUI this past weekend. He was *also* involved in that apartment "dispute" a few years back. Basically, it was alleged that he was involved---along with Luther Head and Aaron Spears---in the unauthorized "CD exchange" that happened a few years ago at a campus apartment.
"I am extremely disappointed in Rich's actions," Weber said in a statement. "We are continuing to review the situation, and there will be severe penalties forthcoming."
Now, I don't want to kick a guy when he's down, especially since this will be the *second* time he's going to have to face disciplinary actions, but....

I'm not a fan of McBride. And it has nothing to do with his off-court shenanigans. It's more like everytime they pass him the ball I'm terrified he's gonna shoot the thing.

Yah, yah, I know. He played good against Memphis---3 years ago.

Poor Rich. Not the best baller on the court and not the best decision-maker off.

Actually, I guess it's sorta the same problem, just different arenas.

I wish him better luck in both....

I got over 13000 today

I don't normally post about work, but in this case, I'll make an except---partly because it really isn't work-related and partly because I'll probably be posting more about it as time goes on.

There is a campus-wide Walking Challenge coming up that's organized by Division of Campus Recreation. We have 14 people at my work that are going to be participating. Since you can only have a maximum of 10 on a team, we are going to set up two teams and have a little inter-office rivalry going.

Last Friday, there was a big walk to kick it off on the Quad. If you were one of the first 2000 to sign up, you got a free t-shirt and a *pedometer.* So...about 12 of us went to the walk, picked up our bags, walked around the Quad at noon, and cut out on the defined walk route early. Instead of the regular walk route, we walked down Green Street to Basil Thai and had Tom Yum Noodle Soup. Mmmmm....

Then we walked back to work---exactly 1.0332 miles. How do I know the *exact* distance you ask? Well, with this handy dandy Gmaps Pedometer.

Click the "+" to zoom into where you want to map a route.

Click "Clear points and start over"

Click "Start recording"

Double-click the cross hairs to mark a point. You can click and drag the map to get the map to view a new area.

The boxes on the left side of the window will show "Total Distance." You can "Save the route" and then bookmark it for future reference. There is also a calorie counter.

Christ didn't come to Earth to give us the willies....

One of my *favorite* movies is Dogma. If you haven't seen it (what, do you live under a rock?), the IMDB describes it as:
The last known descendant of Christ is called upon to save the existence of humanity from being negated by two renegade angels trying to exploit a loophole [in Catholic dogma].
It's a look at Catholic dogma and religion and beliefs and ideas and more---like masturbation, fart, and dick jokes. You know, T&A---theology and ass....

In it, Cardinal Glick (played by George Carlin) tries to put a new face on the Catholic church by unveiling....















Buddy Christ. (The title of this blog post is straight from Cardinal Glick's monologue where he unveils Buddy Christ.)

So...here we are about 7 years later, and Buddy Christ has surfaced again---only this time in a much less humorous way.

I think coalition spokesman Maj. Willy Willhoite says it best:
If it wasn't so serious it would be funny.