Sunday, November 25, 2007

Glass, Biking, Cuba

Went to Chihuly Nights at Phipps yesterday with Pete and Kirsten. Verrrrry cool. I saw the installation during the day this summer with another friend, and while nice then, it was spectacular last night. Highly recommended.

Anyway, I'm bored with not exercising and feeling like I'm getting fat in addition to not having a definite life purpose. Apparently knocking myself out has knocked some sense into me, as I've had a kick-ass Thanksgiving break getting caught up on all kinds of life-enhancing endeavours, including trying to rehabilitate myself in the eyes of the nonprofit community in Pittsburgh. For those of you who know what I did in 2001 in order to get to Cuba, you know what I mean.

My sporting sanction is up at the end of July next year, and I need something in my life other than just selling software and web development services, and fighting a rear-guard action against the communist regime in Cuba. I miss the daily rhythm of training, and while I will never race full-time again, I do plan to race at least locally. Maybe. So I rode yesterday for the first time in about a month, and took the picture below, which I sent to douchebag brian trdina, errr, I mean, DoucheBlog, along with a note saying I plan to win at least one ACA Criterium in 2008. I didn't mention that I will also ride the Dirty Dozen in 2008 if I'm still in Pittsburgh.

I had a very loud Dan Chew on the phone last night, and so I don't have to repeat myself, I didn't start doping until late-2001, and all of my results up until then were achieved cleanly. So no need to strip me of my second-place in the Dirty Dozen, my whopping four ACA Club Championships, or my brilliant and inspired Pseudodrome records. I mean, c'mon, I've already been stripped of allllll of my results since July 1, 2001. A man needs something to keep him warm on these cold Western Pennsylvania evenings, and dreams of Cuba, Uruguayan putas and focaccia just don't do it.

Mike Dropkin, who engaged in a spirited bit of email trolling last week, wants to know about the shooting gallery videos. Patience is a virtue, my friend. Updates on Cuba? Not really. Work is top of mind right now, because without a developing career and regular source of income, what's the point? I've hardly given up the fight, however. I'm even thinking about what's next on the education front, and - if I can arrange it - will complete a mini-MBA program at Katz this winter. Keep your fingers crossed, and watch out Robert Morgenthau!

Before, I go, for my friends in the Cuban government who are reading this, I want to leave you with:

1. Abajo Fidel!
2. Viva Cuba Libre!
3. Chavez is as bad for Venezuela and the Hemisphere as Castro.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Napoleon Hill - Thought for the Day

Some setbacks are so severe that to give in to them means losing the whole ball game. When he assumed command of the Korean War, Gen. Matthew Ridgeway found his forces pushed far to the south, hard pressed by the invaders. Only a determined decision to hold the lines allowed the American forces to keep from being swept into the sea and to eventually regain all the territory they had lost. When a defeat strikes, you may not have the time to withdraw and contemplate your mistakes without risking further setbacks. Don’t succumb to paralysis. It is important to know at that moment what it is you truly desire and to act to preserve your resources and your hope. If you crumble utterly, you will take a blow to your self-esteem that will be hard to repair. Instead, stick to your principles, and you will know, at the very least, that you have protected the most important thing you have.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Cuban Regime = Haters

What More Evidence do You Need? Details via KillCastro.

I haven't had much time or desire for blogging, least of all about Cuba. Nonetheless, this is too shocking not to at least redistribute. Let me quote KC:

"Sadly...people do not seem to understand the importance of what is been shown in this photograph, we are missing a great opportunity by not divulging this photo as much as we could, making it fly around the world.

Many of us just shrug shoulders and make a "comic" comment about it, and that's it. Others simply look the other side, and do nothing about it. The ones who feel indignation, and whose blood boil for these injustices are just very few.

That's why we've been 48 years under Castro and his system from hell. And if we don't get the message out for the world to see, if we just ignore that this is about marketing our cause through images like this for the world to understand the pains of the Cuban people, well, some more years of tyranny -who know how many- will keep on piling up over the Cuban people. Thanks to all who understand this and publicized this brutal image."

Viva Cuba Libre!

Abajo Fidel!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

A Note to His Fellow Pittsburghers

Last night I had the difficult task of confronting - along with dozens of other enlightened Pittsburghers - the sad reality represented by the final result of the mayoral election. Voter turnout was "light" (I hate the use of that word in this context...perhaps compulsory voting like that which is required in Uruguay should be implemented in this country), my fellow democrats held a 5:1 registration advantage over Republicans, and the incumbent walked away with

Monday, November 05, 2007

Trade Show Blues

From the TechNow Conference for Nonprofits.

The Immaculate Election

Here we are, on the eve of the election, just one day away from making history. Mark and the campaign will be going non-stop between now and tomorrow night's election results, taking his positive message of change to voters all across the city. Here are a few highlights:

Tonight, from 5-7pm in Gold Lot 2 at Heinz Field, the DeSantis campaign will
host an "Immaculate Election" Steelers Tailgate Party and Rally. Drop by to mix and mingle, have some food and drink, talk to Mark, and show your support for Pittsburgh's two toughest competitors: the Steelers and the DeSantis campaign.

If you want to join the team and help Mark make history tomorrow, there's still time to volunteer. Call Camille at 412.606.3075, and she (or another one of Mark's dedicated campaign workers) will find an assignment that works for you.


The official DeSantis Campaign Election Night Rally & Party will begin at 8pm at Navarra, 131 7th St., next to Bossa Nova and one block past the Benedum Center. Parking is available across the street in the O'Reilly Theater Garage. Join us for a night of food and drink and political fellowship, as we gather to support Mark and usher in a brand new day for the city we love.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Campaign Stare

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

On the Campaign Trail

And so begins the last day of the DeSantis campaign for me. The hours are grueling, but Mark has been an inspiration and it's truly impressive to see the impact he is having on the lives of ordinary Pittsburghers. He is restoring their hope in the possibility of change and a renaissance in the city of Pittsburgh.

Campaigning is a unique blend of having to be both a brilliant policy wonk (which Mark is, and Luke is most decidedly not) and an "Everyman" who can stand outside of Starbucks, or Shop-n-Save or on a corner in Knoxville and actively engage with the citizenry and convince them that he's just like them in his desire to see Pittsburgh be all the city it can be. Neat stuff.

From yesterday, quotes we overheard while out with Mark, as recorded by Chad Hermann at Teacher.Wordsmith.Madman:


A 50-something woman from Sheraden, after tapping Mark on the shoulder: I'm a Democrat, and I'm praying to God that you win.

A 60-something man from Banksville, after walking up to shake Mark's hand: I'm voting for you, but I just want to know: have you asked Luke for a ride in his Yukon?

A 70-something man in Banksville, after a campaigner tried to give him a DeSantis brochure: Arrrrgh! You tell him to go back to Texas with Bush!

A 50-something city worker from Beechview, while talking to a campaigner: My whole division is voting for DeSantis. We're worried about our pensions, and we can't stand that kid.

A 40-something man in Banksville, politely refusing a campaign brochure: I'm already voting for him; I like to vote for adults.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

WIth the Next Mayor of Pittsburgh

Mark DeSantis and Joe Papp (l-r)

Viva la RevoluciĆ³n!