Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas Eve

I had a 0700 wake up call Christmas Eve Morning. A quick adjustment at the chiropractor was first on the schedule followed by an uptown Christmas delivery Dad and I had to get done by eight. I'm glad Dad came with me. We don't talk a ton, but driving around Charlotte is something we can both talk about. As usual, Dad took the long route back to Mint Hill. Both of us do that sometimes. I mentioned some houses around his office were pretty neat so we drove by and looked at those. Then we drove through some other neighborhoods talking about stuff along the way. It was nice. Once arriving in the Hill Aunt Bibus and Uncle Ben got to the house. We ate a big assed lunch and opened presents. Bibus got me a dress shirt from Belk's. It's probably the first shirt that she's purchased for me in years that I actually like! I love Bibus. I left shortly after that and headed to work. I don't mind working holidays, plus The Lady was working. I love her, too.
Tim Baier mentioned Saturday night at The Gin Mill that his mom was flying in Christmas Eve and they were having dinner and we were welcome. Since Tim lives a low, screaming four iron away from the back gate of the station, I gladly obliged. I got to Tim's place a little late thanks to your average holiday interstate fatal accident but there was still plenty of food. Mama Baier had whipped up some cheesy potatoes, macaroni and cheese, and green beans to compliment the ham Tim took care of. Jared brought an award winning chocolate creme pie. Producer Rachel(she left early to go back to work) and I brought only ourselves. Oh Billy it was good food! Thanks to the Baiers, Christmas Eve was great!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas Everybody

Saturday brought forth another family Christmas celebration. Dad, Sister Anna and I(mom was sick with a fever) got in the car early in the morning and headed to Lincolnton for lunch and presents. Every year before we open presents, PawPaw reads the Christmas story like any other good 83 year old Methodist minister would. PawPaw rarely preaches anymore so it's great to hear him read in his preacher voice. After he's done reading, he closes his good news bible and says a prayer. PawPaw prays in an aching baritone that almost sounds like he's crying. I think he just does it for effect. Whatever it is, it works.

Merry Christmas everyone, and if you haven't' opened all of your presents yet, PawPaw has something he'd like for all of us to hear..

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Grey Wednesday

I'd like to apologize to the readers about the poor photo quality featured since the blogs' resurfacing. I need to remember to start carrying the point and shoot with me every day. You've been looking at poor cell phone pictures. This will improve by the end of the year.

Your friendly neighborhood police officer Tim and I went to the mall Tuesday morning. You know, to go Christmas shopping, and shit. Hey, that reminds me of another time Tim and I went to the mall. This was probably back in 200 when my old roommate Brad, Tim and I decided to park my Mazda Navajo at SouthPark mall and drink beer until we almost peed our pants, then go shopping. That was a good time.

Anyway, Monday Tim met me and the mall and I quickly realized we were both wearing blue jeans and grey sweaters. Good thing I had a team colors polo in the truck or we would have looked like clowns walking around the mall. Maybe even gay clowns. Sure enough when Tim got to the Gin Mill Wednesday night for Christmas Karaoke Night, we both were wearing the same blue jeans and same grey sweaters. Then Campbell took off his jacket and he was wearing blue jeans and a grey sweater, too. Oh well, it was dark so I don't think anyone noticed. Except for when we all posed for this picture.

Oh, and a big Happy 29th Birthday to Tim Baier. By the way, Tim dated Christine Lakin of Step by Step fame in Junior High School.

Days of Yore

Your average news photographer knows a ton about local restaurants. The last three or four years, the Charlotte restaurant scene has greatly improved. Johnson and Wales moved their Charleston Campus here a few years ago and whip ass restaurants have sprouted all over town. This post is about none of those.

I typically bring my dinner to work. It's cheaper and healthier. Wednesday I didn't bring dinner so I was faced with the tough decision of where I was going to eat. When this happens I take the sat buggy down South Boulevard and see where the good Lord leads me. Sometimes I make a left turn somewhere and end up on Park Road, but Wednesday took me to the Skyland Family Restaurant. I used to go there a lot when I worked overnights for NBC. It's your typical 24 hour diner with an enormous menu that has damn near anything you'd ever want on it. Situated in a tiny shopping center with a pool hall and gay bar it looks like it's been open for fifty years. It smells like a smoking section. The plates look old and the food is slightly above average. I just looked at their website and they've only been open since 1994. Their site is really professional and flashy, too. Weird. A greek man named Jimmy Kakavitsas owns the place. He's a hell of a nice guy that fed 2,500 people at Thanksgiving a few weeks ago. He plans to feed 5,000 next year.

Anyway, I walked in and saw the wall of former professional wrestlers that's always there. It's full of signed glossies from wrestling legends. My favorite one is of Nelson Freakin' Royal. A nice waitress handed me a menu and told me to sit anywhere I'd like. Of course I choose a table by the window where the sat buggy was parked so I could keep an eye on it. After ten minutes I settled on a dinner salad with a side of spaghetti. The salad was the finest iceberg available in December and was soaking three or four pints of italian dressing and the spaghetti needed three or four more ladles of marinara, but I loved every bit of it. I miss old school Charlotte.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Extra Trips

Bryan Allman made his way to the Queen City via his home state of New York. He honed his shooting skills in Binghamton, Ft. Myers and Albany, NY before making his way to the one four along with his wife and two young boys. Bryan often talks of his multiple daily trips to the shitter and I'm certain it's 100 percent because of his diet. BAllman often downs pop-tarts and soda for dinner. This afternoon he grabbed a packet of Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate Mix with marshmallows, ripped open the top and and poured the entire son of a bitch down his gullet. He went home for dinner and returned with a Tupperware full of macaroni and cheese. Only there was tuna, onions and hot sauce in it mixed in. Wow!!!

Monday, December 17, 2007

74 East

I'd go through a long, drawn out explanation about why I haven't written in more than two months, but I don't really have one. I guess my muse went away and I'm not certain it's back. I'm going to try writing some in hopes it will return!
After an exhausting Friday covering the nutty Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office race I put on some long pants and a sweet assed shirt and burned up Highway 74 to Wilmington for a rock show. Cousin Lee recently moved back to Wilmington from Atlanta and got the band back together. He and his pal Brent added a few new members to create the Monkey Junction Band.
I rolled into Wormwood's Bar and Grill about 45 minutes into their first set and I'll be damned, they didn't suck! In fact, they're actually pretty good. Lee does a good job fronting the band and sings with a lot of soul I didn't really expect. Along with a string bass and percussion, they've a fine sound.
Cousin Ty came down from Carey for the show. Ty can party and she's not skeered to let you know it. It'd be fun to party more with Ty. She oozes good times. Lee's sister, Cousin Anne and her hubby Cliff were there, too. This was the first time in the 16 years they've been married I've hung out with them somewhere other than a family holiday or event and I'm glad we got to see each other. It's a bit weird to see us all grow up and change in little ways, but I love it. Now we talk about careers and kids and drink beer together. It's great! Early Saturday after the show(I think around 3 am) Ty, Lee and myself were back at Lee's house having a few beverages, talking about old time and future times. It was great, something we all need to do more often. I think we will.