Monthly Archives: December 2009

5 years since graduation

So, it has been five years since I graduated from the University of Miami, I know because the university’s Office of Alumni Relations has been reminding me every week since last January. Apparently, enough time has elapsed for me to become nostalgic enough to open my checkbook and make a billion dollar donation. Not gonna happen.


I may not be giving them any money, but a little review won’t hurt. Or at least, I hope not.


I began working for Ignore magazine in November of 2004, just before graduating from UM. I had three stories published online but was only sent one check. I have no idea when I was terminated as I was never notified of any change in publication schedule, but my best guess is October of 2007 (last time their blog was updated).


Fortunately, in April of 2005 I began writing press releases for my old scout troop and then for St Johns UCC both out of Shamokin , Pa. In mid-2008, I began working on my application to the M.F.A program for University of Baltimore . I was rejected, but I had spent far too much time working on said project not to go through with the move anyway.


So, now that we’re up to date, where does that leave us? Simple: it doesn’t, just because I haven’t found my niche yet doesn’t mean that my life is over. It just means I have another five years to find myself (the donation may take a bit longer).

Categories: Baltimore, coal region, ramblings, UM news | Leave a comment

Thanksgiving Weekend: Part 2

Due to circumstances I won’t get into (until the book deal goes through), Thanksgiving dinner was held on the Sunday preceding the actual holiday. I wasn’t expecting a lot of people to show up, but there were 13 people who showed up on relatively short notice to help celebrate the day of Thanksgiving…and, my brother, Ned’s 40 th birthday.


We arrived at my aunt’s house shortly after 12:30pm for an expected eating time of around 3pm. We weren’t the last to arrive as my brother Andy, 38, pulled in with his family nearly a full hour after we did (understandable with four young kids in tow).


We also weren’t the first arrivals either as my Ned, Uncle Tom and my cousin Jordan, 14, were half-watching the end of Poseidon (2006) on TNT, followed by The Patriot. Tom (?) brought a copy of Ice Age 3 for us and mom brought a few tubs of toys for the girls (and Luke!) though she said anyone could play with them if they chose.


As I mentioned above, dinner was to start around 3pm, and it did. The table had just barely enough seats for the grown-ups, which was just as well since the girls had absolutely no interest in eating with all those toys lying about (meaning at least one parent had to stay back and watch them).


The conversation at the grown-up table varied jumping between the economy, swine flu and, of course, the Steelers. There were also updates of various family news and events, none of which I can remember now.


After dinner, it was time to clean up, play outside with the girls, watch the Steelers game on TV… and change Luke’s diaper (okay his mom did that). Then after all that was done, the girls came in for Ned’s birthday cakes (no-one knew who was supposed to bring the cake so…), and once everything was cleaned up it was time to pack up, go home… and prepare for Christmas.

Categories: coal region, family, holidays | Leave a comment

Thanksgiving Weekend: Part 1

I left the apartment today (Nov 20 th ) at 10:30am, and arrived at the Mount Royal station exactly as the train was pulling up to the station. I was lucky the train waited long enough for me to get on as most operators either don’t see you or they don’t care (“eh, the next one will be along in a few minutes anyway”).


I arrived in Hunt Valley at 11:22am, and headed immediately to the coffee – not that I was thirsty but because it was slightly nippier than I expected (damn you, Weather Channel!). And, I had over a half-hour to fill before my mom and Dorothy would arrive.


The first thing they did when they arrived was to get lunch at the “food court” in Wegmens (though mom did let me put my bags in the back of her van). We got our food and the ladies found the last table on the first level. Sadly, it was only a two-seater which bumped me upstairs where I found another (if slightly smaller) table overlooking the bakery.


We stayed in Wegmens an additional half-hour after we all finished eating (Dorothy can be a very slow eater), and then mom drove over to a nearby nursery to try and find “Battery operated lights on a timer,” which one of the employees she asked said was impossible because timers “can’t run on batteries.”  It was then time to head the rest of the way to Harrisburg . This took a little longer then expected as traffic was surprisingly heavy for a Saturday (especially one a full four days before the holiday).


We got to Harrisburg around 3pm (I can’t remember the exact time), and mom dropped me off at Borders while she and Dorothy went over to the Costco on the other side of the mall. They promised they’d be no more then 40 minutes, but in reality it was more like an hour-and-a-half due largely to “crowds” or something like that.


The first thing they said to me when I entered the van was “pick a place to eat!” Even though it was only 4:30; however, by the time we got to the Old Country Buffet midway across the mall from Borders, it was 5pm (and we weren’t seated for another 10 minutes thereafter).


The rest of the drive home was pretty uneventful. We dropped Dorothy of at her house in Tharptown, and went back in time to watch the shows at 8pm. I guess that’s important to some people.

Categories: coal region, family, holidays | Leave a comment

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