Avoiding Crisis

Archive for June 2007

Sixty-two flavors and then some

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Today is my father’s birthday. His 62nd birthday. In honor of this day I am going to share with you 62 different facts about my Dad.

  1. He’s named after his paternal grandfather Giambattista.
  2. His family immigrated to the United States from Altamura, Italy.
  3. He’s been to Italy twice,
  4. Though he’s never made it to Altamura.
  5. He’s a second generation Italian-American.
  6. He was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY.
  7. He was a huge Brooklyn Dodgers Fan.
  8. He’s still a Dodgers fan.
  9. I think he secretly pretends that they still play in Brooklyn.
  10. We used to go to one baseball game a year, it was when the NY Mets played the LA Dodgers. He rooted as loudly as possible for the Dodgers. We all pretended like we didn’t know him.
  11. He collects Brooklyn Dodgers memorabilia, especially anything from the 1955 World Series.
  12. He’s played baseball all his life.
  13. He coached little league baseball.
  14. He was really good at baseball.
  15. He was the Captain of the Hunter College baseball team.
  16. His team won the school’s first-ever CUNYAC Championship in 1965.
  17. He played catcher.
  18. He wore #13.
  19. He went to Power Memorial Academy.
  20. When he was a senior and Capitan of the Varsity baseball team, Lewis Alcindor was a Freshman basketball player.
  21. He was a high school Social Studies teacher.
  22. The first school he taught at was Evander Child’s High School in the Bronx.
  23. He eventually left the classroom and became an Assistant Principal, a Principal and then a Superintendent.
  24. He created the School of Cooperative Technical Education.
  25. He was the Supervising Superintendent of the High School Division for the New York City Board of Education. Which is just a fancy way of saying that he was in charge of all NYC high schools and responsible for a quarter million students.
  26. He retired in 1996.
  27. Since 1996 he’s worked for the National Academy Foundation.
  28. He’s retiring again this year.
  29. He’ll never really retire.
  30. One summer he actually drove a NYC taxi cab to earn enough money to buy my mom’s engagement ring.
  31. If he was to write a book about all his experiences working for the NYC Board of Education he’d title it “You Can’t Make This Shit Up.”
  32. He curses quite a bit, especially if he’s angry or frustrated.
  33. He’s often full of shit, and in that I mean that he has an amazing gift for bullshitting.
  34. Which, makes him this incredible extemporaneous public speaker.
  35. He can be a bit larger than life when he gets behind a podium.
  36. He can also be quite intimidating.
  37. He’s really just a big teddy bear.
  38. He’s a real big softee when it comes to his grandkids.
  39. He doesn’t like to lose.
  40. He’s very competitive.
  41. He always wins at Trivial Pursuit.
  42. His favorite game show is Jeopardy.
  43. He knows A LOT about a lot of things.
  44. His brain is filled with some of the most bizarre random facts and figures.
  45. For example, without hesitation, he can tell you in what year Mary Queen of Scots was executed.
  46. And yet, he knows absolutely nothing about computers.
  47. Actually, he knows more than nothing about computers.
  48. Well, aside from the fact that he knows enough to be able to sit for hours playing Freecell and online poker.
  49. He will not let anyone talk to him while he’s on the computer playing his “games”
  50. He thinks that speaking Spanish simply means putting an “0” on the end of any English word
  51. He’s one of those types that when visiting a new country will try to pronounce the words on signs and billboards even though he has no idea how they are supposed to sound.
  52. His favorite Spanish word is colchón.
  53. He also has this need to give everyone a nickname, even if they don’t want one and even if their name can’t really be made into a nickname. This is typically achieved by adding a “y” on the end of a name or an abbreviated form of the name. If this method doesn’t work, he tends to just call them by their first initial. And these rules apply to almost everyone he meets, including employees and colleagues, expect for my twin brother who was given the name of “Sherman.” Though, come to think of it, that too, over the years, became Shermy.
  54. He’s an avid golfer.
  55. And he only recently stopped playing organized softball (and that was only because he had a heart attack.)
  56. He is in constant motion.
  57. He still treats me like I am 4.
  58. If I’m visiting and staying at my parent’s house, to this day, at 9PM he will tell me to go to bed.
  59. He’s extremely generous
  60. He’s a doting grandfather,
  61. a wonderful father,
  62. and an rather incredible person.

Happy Birthday Dad!


Written by nicolemarie

June 30, 2007 at 4:16 pm

Posted in birthdays, list

foreign 7

with 3 comments

just had to share this…

me: Honey, about this bill you paid at the Embassy, how much was it?
him: I don’t remember, it says it right on it.
me: Yes, I know, but I can’t read the first number.
him: I don’t know.
I walk upstairs and show him the bill
him: It’s a 70 (he says very matter-of-factly)
me: That doesn’t look like a 7
him: But it is a 7. I paid 70 pesos.
me: Well that’s the strangest looking 7 I’ve ever seen
him: What do you expect? It’s foreign.

foreign 7

Now, you tell me. Does that look like the number 70?

Written by nicolemarie

June 30, 2007 at 12:05 pm

Could You Pass 8th Grade Science?

with one comment

Apparently so.

I light of yesterday’s posting….

I happened upon this quiz so I figured, why the heck not.

See, I told you I was average. I got 76% correct.

Mingle2 Free Online Dating - Science Quiz

Go ahead…try it.  Let’s see how you do.

Written by nicolemarie

June 28, 2007 at 3:22 pm

Posted in quiz


with 2 comments

We received a package in the mail yesterday (and no it wasn’t my laptop gosh darn it.). It was a package sent by my mother. In it was a little something for everyone.

It contained an interesting mixture of items.

For my husband there was a big over-sized mug from the Hard Rock Cafe in Copenhagen. My folks had taken a trip to Denmark recently and since my husband collects pint glasses from Hard Rock Cafe’s from around the world they thought it best to buy him a mug – yeah, go figure.

After their trip to Copenhagen they went to London. My dad went off to work and my mom went shopping, ’cause that’s what my mother does best. She went to Harrod’s.

My daughter got a cup with a staw that twists around the outside, adorned with that cute Harrod’s bear. My son got a plush big red bus filled with three teedy bear finger puppets. Very cute.

And, of course, there was something in the package for me. I got a few cards from 1981 – yes, you read that correctly 1981. These are totally old school cards. You can see them here, here and here.

The package also contained 4 high school report cards. yeah. wtf?

I knew that I didn’t get anything from their trip. My mom had already told me that. I was totally fine with it – see I told you I wasn’t really the family accountant. Seriously, getting nothing would have been about 100x better then getting what I got.

And why am I getting these things now you might be wondering? Read the rest of this entry »

Written by nicolemarie

June 27, 2007 at 9:53 pm

the one in which i tell you all about my 25th year of life

with 2 comments

I have this friend who is really big into having 5-year plans. To me that seems a bit short of a time frame, but it seems to work well for him. Me on the other hand, I don’t really do life-plans. Not for 5 years, not for 10. I’m just not big into the idea of having such a structured plan for life. Maybe I should…but that’s a discussion for another day.

But I’m thinking, if a 5-year period of time can be used to create a life-plan then I’d say it’s long enough to look back on and review.

So I came across this post the other day and I found it interesting – interesting with regards to what the writer shared as well as interesting with regards to the whole “when I was 25” aspect. It made me think about what I was doing at 25.

While 25 wasn’t that long ago, only 4 years and 320 days ago to be exact, I found that I had quite a hard remembering a whole lot from that year. And then it hit me. Like a ton of bricks. I was 25 in 2002. 2002! Ah. A whole heck of a lot of life changing stuff happened in that year.

Without a doubt, my 25th year of life has been, thus far, the single most defining year of my life. If I look back on things and try to pinpoint the moments in time when I ventured down a very different path than I had ever expected I would, I can easily say that it was when I was 25.

Here’s what happened in my 25th year of life… Read the rest of this entry »

Written by nicolemarie

June 25, 2007 at 9:11 pm


with 3 comments

So it’s true, you really don’t forget how to ride a bike.

We went for our first family bike ride today. It was fun. I was only a little bit nervous, a little bit wobbly and a little bit freaked out. My husband says that I got through it with flying colors.

Hold on while I pat myself of the back and take a bow. (And if you are totally confused as to why I would be congratulating myself for riding a bike, read this and it will make a whole lot more sense.)

In case you don’t believe me. As I suspect some of you might not. I have proof. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by nicolemarie

June 24, 2007 at 9:20 pm

Posted in Argentina, life, photos, success

rain, rain, go away…

with one comment

While yesterday was the first day of summer for many of you, it was our first day of winter.

I had all these great plans for this morning, I was finally going to be able to cross off a number of items that have been lingering on my “to do” list.

This is what it looks like out my back door.


I guess I should be happy that it’s rain and not snow. Though, come to think of it, I do really miss the snow. It would be nice to have some fresh snow to play in when the kids got home from school.

I don’t think I’m going anywhere today and I’m really not the least bit bothered by that.

Written by nicolemarie

June 22, 2007 at 9:56 am

Posted in Argentina