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Lucky Man

10 May

The truth is, life is pretty good for me these days.

I’ve got two young nephews and a niece who just turned 3 years old.

I’ve been busy, I’m happy, and the weather is turning nicer.

Oh, and last week at this time I was in Captiva Island, Florida, on another trip for work.

Already this year I’ve been to Las Vegas and Key Biscayne for conferences.

And this was the second time I’ve been to Captiva for this particular conference. Continue reading

Not So Sunny Days

6 Feb

I’ll be honest … At least on the surface, as far as any of you can tell, life is going pretty well for me these days.

I have two new nephews, two weeks ago I got “stuck” and had to spend an extra day in Las Vegas thanks to a snow storm back east, and this past week it happened again, only this time I was in Key Biscayne, Florida.

As I keep telling people: Don’t hate the player, hate the game.

But I have to say, I wish everything was as glamorous and fun as it seems. Continue reading

Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas

31 Jan

I was lucky enough to go to Las Vegas last week for MarketingSherpa’s Email Summit, held at Caesars Palace.

Good conference, good to see friends, to meet some folks I’ve been in touch with via Twitter IRL, and make new connections thanks to my tendency to over-tweet when I go to events like these (no kidding; I posted 118 tweets in three days, the most of anyone else at the conference).

Learned some, networked a bit, represented my employer well, and would call the trip a productive one.

Blah blah blah. This isn’t my work blog. I don’t need to defend why I was there. Continue reading

Strangers on a Train

26 Dec

The biggest mystery about The Tourist isn’t the whereabouts of the guy people think Johnny Depp’s character is. It’s how a movie with so much going for it could be so disappointing. Depp stars as Frank, a Wisconsin math teacher, who innocently meets the mysterious Elise (Angelina Jolie) on board a train en route to Venice. Elise involves Frank in a plot to distract some mobsters and some British Interpol agents, but something goes wrong and of course, the two fall for each other. It all unfolds on land and water in the Italian city, and the film was directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, director of the Oscar-winning film The Lives of Others.

Sounds intriguing (mostly), but I just didn’t buy it. I’m not sure exactly when the film lost its credibility, but it had to be around the part when Depp revealed himself as the most stylish, sophisticated, athletic, and resourceful math teacher of all time — and he’s from Wisconsin to boot! Is there any reason for him to fall in love with someone who has put his life in danger, even if she looks like Angelina Jolie? Of course not. So I don’t mind telling you that the “twist” at the end couldn’t be any more predictable. And as moviegoers, we’re left wondering why Depp, Jolie, et al didn’t just stay home instead of taking this ill-fated trip. I’m giving The Tourist a C–.

Woman in Search of a Word

13 Aug

You might think that after seeing a movie called Eat Pray Love, that I’d want to do one of the above.

Or, that maybe I’d want to hop online and plan a trip to Italy, India, or Bali.

But that would imply that said movie was any good, and portrayed the activities of the title and showed the places where they’re undertaken in attractive, tourist-friendly ways.

Unfortunately, EPL is not the kind of movie that would inspire such a reaction. Continue reading

Summer in Michigan City

6 Jul

Growing up in suburban New York, I never thought that one day I’d get really excited about spending July 4 in Michigan City, Indiana.

But after going there last year and having a great time, that’s what’s happened. So that’s why I went to Chicago this weekend.

Thursday and Friday I wandered around town (about 6 miles of walking, in fact), took a day trip to Evanston to see Northwestern (just for fun), checked out two of Chicago’s leading cupcake places (Molly’s and Sweet Mandy B’s — both of which were tasty, but not as good as the hype), had some custom-made rapid-frozen ice cream at a place called iCream (really, that’s its name), and finally got to meet my friends’ daughter, who is totally cute.

But spending the weekend in Lake Michigan was the highlight of the trip. Continue reading

Sunny Days

8 Feb

Since my parents basically live in Florida, going down there is more like going home than going on vacation.

That said, going down to Florida with my niece, Abby, makes it a vacation. And that’s exactly what I was doing last week.

We all went down for our first full family vacation with Abby. The first half she was with my sister, brother-in-law, and his family, and the second half they were with me and my folks. Continue reading