Sunday, September 28, 2008

Living like Rock Stars

It's not so pretty right now. I eventually fell asleep only to wake up sweating around noon. It still hurts my head to be upright and between the three of us, we're living like rock stars.

We're waiting on a staff of maids and butlers to make our beds and do our laundry. In the meantime, my girl has squeezed into a toddler shirt and leggings she fished out of the donation bag. I'm sweating in a bathrobe with Froot Loop Cereal Straws in the pockets.

We're also waiting on a chef to prepare something that isn't eaten straight out of a bag with our bare hands. We're running low on BBQ chips and juice boxes. The girl has managed to make herself some ramen and Crystal Light. I tried to eat some pea pods but between my clogged head and desire for something delicious, it was like eating green twigs--tough, bitter, and the chewing was giving me a headache.

We also need staff to unpack our bags. And go to the grocery store--we need foil and milk badly. And to clean out our microwave--ugh, what did we do in there?! And to give my neck a rubdown--from my brief recollection, I think my football picks are going down the toilet.

Maybe it's time for another sleeping phase...wake me when the staff arrives...

Back...and sick

It's 2:30am, Sunday morning.

We got back into LAX around 9:30pm, Thursday. After baggage claim, customs, catching the shuttle to Long Term parking, driving down the 405, and a visit to Jack in the Box, we got home around 12:30am.

Unfortunately on our last day in Singapore Thursday morning, I woke up with a sore throat and got increasingly congested since then. Traveling on a packed airplane only made the experience more awesome.

I went to work the next morning, Friday, in hopes of getting my body back on Pacific time, and also to catch up on a slower-paced Friday than try to hit the ground running on a Monday. I was useless. It was like putting a zombie mannequin at my desk. My head felt full of glue from my cold and my eyes wanted to shut for the day around noon.

Oh and I killed about a month of Weight Watchers. I'm back up to 156.

Anyhoo, being sick, I not only am ignoring my WW points, but also I've been passing out at will for the last 36 hours. I'm currently in my waking phase. I've caught up on some Naruto, watched 2 hours of "Ace of Cakes" (thank you, Food Channel), and now watching how the earth was made on the History Channel.

I should be making a list of things to do, among them: laundry (LOTS of it), downloading pictures (hundreds of them), grocery shopping (all of it), and cleaning and organizing, etc.

The problem of course is being sick that my head hurts being upright. It's all I can do to stay conscious through football games as I lay on the couch, shoving handfuls of chocolate chips in my mouth and drinking Diet Coke Plus for sustenance.

Ooooo...I feel a sleeping phase coming on...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Welcome to the Jungle: Night Safari!

I finally took off my glasses and became Super Tourist. We kicked it off with the Night Safari at the Singapore Zoo (yes, we napped first) on Sunday night. It's this really cool exhibit apart from the rest of the Zoo where you can walk trails and/or ride a tram and watch animals active at night. It's entirely cageless, with cleverly hidden moats. I tried taking pictures without flash but since I didn't geek-tech out with a tripod, I didn't get many decent pictures. (I haven't been able to download any pictures yet, I know!)

The exhibits with all the animals are dynamite. It's amazing to observe these animals hunting around or just chillaxing by the creek. Though part of me wanted to point out that some of these animals (e.g., elephants) are not naturally nocturnally active and I was uncomfortable that some have been put on an artificial night shift for the sake of our amusement. My discomfort is less PETA, more inauthenticity. Though I have to admit that one of my favorite parts of the night was when an elephant was just standing by the side of the road as our tram slowly cruised by, less than a yard away (when we passed, we saw the trainer standing by its side).

The best part of the night was the "Creatures of the Night" show in the amphitheatre, where Velina volunteered and was chosen to show how a civet has such keen sense of smell by hiding a grape in one of her two closed hands. The civet tapped a hand and Velina opened the hand (quickly, quickly! open your hand! urged the trainer) and revealed the grape. Velina was rewarded with a coupon for a free scoop of ice cream at the Ben and Jerry's, which given the concession prices at the zoo, was worth its weight in gold.

By the way, civets are these small rainforest cats that are internationally famous for pooping out the most expensive coffee in the world, Kopi Luwak. Apparently they swallow the coffee cherries whole and their stomach enzymes break down the natural bitterness but still leave the coffee beans intact. Apparently a genius "connoisseur" dug through a civet's excrement, saw the beans and said, I'm going to brew a cup of coffee from these beans that just came out of a civet's butt. And then with a sigh of relief, Wow, this is actually a dynamite cup of coffee--so glad I washed those beans.

I highly recommend the Night Safari, though there are some caveats. As I alluded to above, the prices for food is outrageous, like Disneyland-level. Burgers, Indian food, noodles are about $20 each so I would suggest you eat well before you arrive. On top of that I suggest bringing your own water bottles. For a country that is hot and humid all year round, I can't believe there are no water fountains and the vendors do not give you cups of water with your meal, you have to BUY a bottle of water. The outrageous prices apply to bottles of water as well, so I only bought one for the three of us to share--I didn't have time to fill out the application for a second mortgage to purchase another bottle. Also, the walking trails are awesome but the layout is designed so you have to backtrack through the same trail when you're done to get back to the main entrance where the tram is--so bring water to keep yourself hydrated from the redundant walking.

Velina and I filled Monday and Tuesday to the brim with attractions and activities--more adventures to come...

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Darn this jet lag

Currently, we're jet lag's b!tch.

We collectively woke up around 2am, our first night here, whispering, what time is it?, we need to sleep more, and were able to pass out until a more respectable 5am. We had an awesome breakfast buffet in our hotel that deserves its own post with pictures and then went on a short bus tour that hit the National Orchid Garden at the Botanical gardens, a mineral and precious stone factory, Mount Faber, Chinatown, and Little India, where we grabbed lunch at the "Fodor's Choice" Banana Leaf Apolo.

Though we didn't have their reknowned Fish Head Curry, Paul and the girl loved the Chicken Tikka and Cheese Naan. I had the "vegetarian meal". It was amazing. You get this huge banana leaf with a huge mound of rice and about 12 sides of curries, vegetables, and sauces. It was unbelievable. Spicy, delicious, and a ridiculous value at about 4 US dollars, I don't who was thrilled more: the Cheap Bastard in me or the Fat one.

We got to our hotel room and passed out again for about 2 hours. We woke up to a phone call from housekeeping saying they wanted to clean our room. We went to the pool for a spell and by the time we got back and showered it was after 6pm. We're right next door to the Ngee Ann City mall with the famed Takashimaya flagship store and an amazing food court in the basement. We grabbed dinner there last night and we got more snacks and cream puffs there tonight. We were aiming to go to the Night Safari but totally collapsed into a Pringles and Beard Papa coma. Ugh, not pretty.

It is Sunday at about 4am. Today my goal is breaking the chains of jet lag.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Greetings from Singapore!

Has anyone ever flown out of LAX for 1:45am flight? It's the closest to an unsavory New York experience I've had here in SoCal. For some reason, the international terminal chooses to conserve its lightbulb usage and rely a lot on the neon glow from the commercial signs. The only food available was from a McDonald's where asking for a grilled Chicken wrap for your old man gets you a deep-fried crispy one after waiting about 15 minutes for it (that's where you ask your old man's coronary valves to take one for team rather than make your old lady go through another maddening wait). The night crew employees were on break around us, some drinking McDonald's coffee and others taking a cat nap.

The tableau of us eating deep-fried fast food surrounded by slumped over unconscious bodies bathed in a blue neon reminded me of the NYC Port Authority bus terminal on 42nd Street. I was half-expecting my pimp to yell for me to get back to my corner.

We eventually boarded the plane and in the next 18 hours we probably slept about 5 hours. We flew Cathay Pacific which has a new seat system where your chair doesn't recline, the bottom of the seat slides forward instead. It's not very comfortable because the top of your spine just arcs forward with your head dangling down so you end up looking like a comma. On the plus side, this means the seat in front of you doesn't lean down into you or your tray. Given that we each had a movie screen it was nice that your view wasn't affected, especially considering we were awake and watching movies for 14 hours. I saw Kung Fu Panda, What Happens in Vegas (what a surprise ending--kidding!), and Iron Man (yes, again--Tony Stark, grr, baby!), and I almost got through nearly all the episodes of 30 Rock they had available. I briefly regretted wasting my time sleeping when I should have seen them all.

Anyhoo, we arrived safe and sound in Singapore. And promptly passed out for 5 hours.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Latchkey Kid

After a bit of back and forth, analyzing pros and cons, my girl is going through the familiar rite of passage as a latchkey kid. She's doing it twice a week and so far it's been fine, though she's not as efficient with tasks as she would be if she were supervised. I wouldn't have done it if she showed any sign of being uncomfortable and I was surprised she was actually eager to do it. I got a feeling she's going to be snacking and will want to watch tv while doing homework.

Sigh. Just like her old lady.

But of course, I'm aiming her to be a lot more productive than me. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I'm bringing Dynamite Back

Every once in a while I try to reintroduce a word from the past into current lexicon. Last spring, I tried to bring "foxy" back. Honestly, it wasn't my first attempt. But at my age (over 24) and considering a lot of my conversations are with a 9-year-old, I just don't get that many opportunities to use the word "foxy". And I would feel downright icky applying that word to my girl--hey you look totally foxy in those jeans, sweetie! Ewww, right?

So I've decided I'm bringing "dynamite" back. So handy. That salsa is dynamite! These sneakers are dynamite! That movie is dynamite! You did a dynamite job on the bike, sweetie!

See what I mean? It's a word the whole family can use!

I'm not afraid to go it alone, but it would be really helpful if more folks would start using it. I invite everyone to slip it into their conversation, oh, let's start with once a week for now. It's a great opportunity to bring this awesome word back. Who's with me?


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I'm crafty and I get around

When my girl started to learn how to bike ride I thought it'd be nice if joined her sometimes. Plus she's also been wanting to ride to the Albertson's and get groceries for me so I kind of have to ride with her to evaluate her skills.

Now I might be dating myself, but when I was a kid, it wasn't a law to wear helmets. In fact, no one wore a helmet. And to be honest, I don't want to wear a helmet. First, vainly speaking, these helmets don't look good on me. A huge sombrero with a divet in the top for a bowl of melted nacho cheese with chips on the rim would be more flattering. Second when the top of my head feels itchy, I can't scratch it because the helmet is in the way. And finally, the chin strap feels like it garroting me when it's snug and chafing me when it's loose.

But I don't need a Gary Busey experience to convince me that helmets are a good idea; especially for children. And of course, how can I expect my daughter to appreciate the safety of bicycle helmets unless I comply as well?

So I decided to get crafty with my helmet with stuff from my stash.


Monday, September 15, 2008

Iron Man

My old man and I never formalized any freebie lists, where one lists 5 celebrities one would be allowed to cheat with, because we both think the other is perfect. snort. Of course, I'm one to think that if he were to have a freebie list, anyone on it is probably just a glammed up or famous version of me, like Sophia Loren, Grace Kelly, Posh Spice, or Angelina Jolie. Though I believe I gleaned a real one when he expressed how funny "Saving Silverman" and "The Whole Nine Yards" were and then wanted to go see "The Whole Ten Yards". The common denominator is Amanda Peet. I haven't gotten any official confirmation from him, but I get it--she's smart, funny, and easy on the eyes. My ears are burning, darling.

Anyhoo, this might sound pathetic but I think I'm too old for a freebie list. Too many celebs seem so annoyingly immature and self-centered--and that is a total turn-off at my age. Maybe if I was 20 years younger, I could overlook some of those things, but now, forget it. Plus, is it just me or are young males looking a lot more pretty these days? Like precious pretty, like they pay more attention to their hair, facial, and fashion regimen than me. A LOT more. Like if I ran my hand through their hair, they'd shriek, watch the hair! I just got it the way I wanted! Pfft. My eyes would roll so far back they'd be clanking in my skull.

Anyhoo, I just saw Iron Man. Robert Downey, Jr. nailed this movie. I briefly pondered whether RDJ was going to be the inaugural member to my list. Because I also loved him as Kirk Lazurus in Tropic Thunder, especially in the "Satan's Alley" trailer. But I when I think of all the other movies I've seen him in I don't remember wanting to put him on any such list before. In fact, I remember when "Iron Man" was coming out, I was stumped by all the positive buzz for RDJ. I remember him mostly playing smarmy or annoying slicksters in "Two Girls and a Guy", "The Pick Up Artist", "Less than Zero", and "Bowfinger". How could this guy play an action hero? Well, I was pleasantly suprised and impressed--RDJ slams a home run with this character.

And then I realize it's probably RDJ's Tony Stark who I'd want to put on the list. He's witty, charming, athletic, and ridiculously brilliant. Sure he starts out as complete cad, but he goes through a transformative, grounding epiphany, that moves the most jaded viewers. But even as Stark gains some pathos, he doesn't completely lose his rascally, oh-no-he-didn't! charm--RDJ balances this all nicely.

And was I the only one? When Stark was going through all that robot engineering, hammering out the details, did anyone else swoon at such focus and drive? Raahrrr. Egad, I am an old lady.

Sorry if there are any spoilers in the following but given it's been nearly 4 months out and if I'm seeing it at the $2 theater, I doubt I'm saying anything you haven't heard by now. The movie as a whole was very good, I'm giving it a B. I found it disappointing that there basically 2 female speaking roles and both pretty much served as love/s*x interests, though one could argue the female reporter served the extra function of exposing Stark Industries' purposes to Stark and the audience. The Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) "romance" was fairly typical, bordering on banal. Umm, let's see, devoted personal assistant who shows signs of more than professional fidelity gets glamorous at event and, ooh, I wonder if Tony Stark will notice...zzzzzzzzzzzz

Personally my favorite part of these hero movies is the genesis storyline--how they came to be. Whether it's Batman, Catwoman, Superman, whoever--I love the transformation from lost to resolved; the moment where the protagonist chooses to make a difference and guided by some tranformative principle. In "Iron Man", it is Stark's capture by terrorists that awakens his former self from his selfish, vain, apathetic stupor. The time spent in capture befriended by a wizened doctor, Yinsen, is efficiently developed and well-done. You bet I cried when the two are finally making their escape with the Iron suit prototype and Yinsen, with revelatory satisfaction, says he finally is going to see his family.

Overall, the direction is tight, the dialogue snaps (thanks in a large part to RDJ), and the special effects are dynamite (oh yes, pun intended). I wasn't sure if Jeff Bridges could play the bad guy, but what a difference shaving his head and giving him the name Obadiah does.

The question marks for me were about his hero logistics: does Iron Man only do international gigs? How does he know where and when to go? And seriously, did he just zoom over to Afganistan (which, if he's as fast as a plane, would be close to a 20 hour flight from LAX) to kick a$$ in that village? Is he available for domestic crimes like bank robberies and kidnappings? Also the revelations about Obadiah's activities, normally raise a wha??? But since this is a superhero movie, I was able to shrug it off and accept it. These little niggling details in the story line are what kept this movie from being a four star movie in my mind (though RDJ's performance was definitely four gold stars).

And I kept waiting for those opening riffs of Black Sabbath's Iron Man. By the time those familiar guitar chords ripped through, it was over the closing credits. Trust me, I needed that to ring in much earlier.

Again, RDJ rocked "Iron Man". I'm looking forward to the sequel and then we'll see if Tony Stark gets added to the list. Hmm, can you put fictional characters on a freebie list?

Friday, September 12, 2008

Week 16 - oh well

Well, I should have expected this. I've been on vacation eating mode since my sister is visiting--add the girl's birthday and that I haven't been hitting the gym, I guess I shouldn't have been surprised that I gained some weight back. I'm back up 1.5 pounds to 154.

I'm staying positive (hey, I'm still down from my original 165.5) and I'm focused on getting active. I feel the consequences of inactivity the most, I think. Plus I didn't drink enough water and eat enough vegetables so I'm feeling a bit gluey, like I could use a bit of purifying. But not enough to call Klee Irwin.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Yes, I remember

I always remember what I was doing on this day seven years ago. I had moved to New Jersey from New York, though occasionally I commuted there working with a non-profit theater group. I had just dropped off my daughter off at daycare at the local YMCA and I flipped on the radio. I did a double-take at the station because instead of the typical music, blaring commercials, and djs, it was an AM newsfeed. I remember hearing World Trade Towers and plane, but not quite understanding what was going on. I remember hurrying back and flipping on the TV and all the channels showing the the Twin Towers with a flaming, gaping hole.

I remember when the first tower collapsed--the horrified gasping and terrified shrieking from the crowds near the camera crew. Or was it from the newsroom? Or me? I watched in a paralyzed shock as the second tower came down.

I remember bits and pieces from that day, the newsguys with the map showing that all planes were grounded, that there was another plane that crashed at the Pentagon, and a fourth that crashed in Pennsylvania diverted from the Capitol? I remember reaching my sister who worked near the World Trade Center in Wall Street, and relieved that she had woken up late that day. I remember reaching Paul who was in Irvine, CA, getting ready as we were going to move there a few weeks later, and telling him the terrible news. I remember crying.

I remember donating money at my local gym for another member, Lisa Beamer, who lost her husband, Todd, in the Flight 93 crash. (It eventually came to light that he and others had played a role in diverting that fourth plane.)

In the following days, I remember that no channel was playing anything but the newsfeeds and that I was dying for some levity in those grave days (I remember it eventually came in the form of the Larry Sanders Show on a Friday night). I remember that my friends who worked downtown luckily avoided disaster (I clearly remember one was at the dentist's)--especially two who worked at the World Trade Center (one, who worked at 1 WTC, was late and got to the lobby as people were rushing out, the other was a temp at 7 WTC, and was told not to come in that day). I remember the ones who worked downtown had vivid memories of the dark ashes and flying papers. And I remember one who was right outside the Towers during the crash who had a harrowing memory of horrors darkly and grimly raining down.

I remember going into the city soon after and thinking how weird it was not to see the World Trade Towers anymore. And in its place was a smoldering hole. I remember that a thin stream of smoke seemed to be coming from the site for days. I remember the streets felt emptier. I remember that sense of helplessness of wanting to go down to the World Trade site and do something to help but that due to the overwhelming number of people they had to turn folks away (though I do remember my friend and her family were able to serve hamburgers to the crews digging in the rubble).

I remember Union Square Park with makeshift memorials. I remember the numerous flyers, with pictures of folks in happier times with a spouse, partner, friends, kids or pets, pleadingly asking, Have you seen me?

I remember that the city and the nation collectively grieved the thousands of lives that were lost that day.

My heart aches thinking back on September 11, 2001. I remember, I remember, I remember.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Another year

Velina's birthday was on Saturday and we kicked it off in sweet, sweet style with a couple of Sprinkles, including their seasonal Key Lime flavor (very, very good), Banana (ridiculously delicious with great real banana flavor), Red Velvet (reliably great), and Chocolate Marshmallow (meh):

Then the girl requested The Melting Pot for dinner. I was expecting Rainforest Cafe or something else loud, where drinks can be guzzled from large novelty mugs. She surprised me when she chose a pretty sophisticated (and pricey--ka ching!) place:

Needless to say, it was good:

Happy Birthday Gorgeous!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Week 15 - encouraging

Thrilled that my scale said 152.5 after 15 weeks. Very encouraging to say the least, after that month of plateauing and breaking through last week. Again, I wasn't able to keep my extra points below 35 but I'm getting much closer than I have been. Losing a pound and half last week and another pound and a half this week has been very motivating to keep trying.

This week might be difficult with my girl's birthday and my sister visiting me from New York. Can someone say a dozen Sprinkles? Ouch.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Time to go Pro

Every once in a while I recall when I learned the importance of going Pro. I was driving home on a warmish day and at a stoplight, I noticed a bicyclist to my left. Generally, here in Orange County, it's unusual that a bike rider would be on the driver's side rather than on the right side of the road. That was the first thing that caught my eye.

But I realized he was going to turn left, so it made sense he wasn't on my right. He wasn't dressed as one of those superheroes who ride in those cycling crews on weekend mornings. If you don't know what I'm talking about, you need to hit a local Starbucks or Peet's around 9am on a Saturday. The toned folks clicking around wearing tight lycra shorts, the jersey equivalents of NASCAR hoods (except they seem to be advertising Italian coffee makers), and helmets--those are the Pros. The bike rider to my left was built softer, sweating profusely, and was wearing a white t-shirt tucked into tight lycra shorts. That was the second thing that caught my eye.

I'm no Pro cyclist, but apparently there are different grades of lycra shorts. And by different grades, I mean different levels of thickness. And by different levels of thickness, I mean different levels of opacity. Now it just so happens that this particular cyclist had his bike seat set to my eye level and he was leaning forward, poised to zoom out when the light turned green. And when I casually glanced a couple feet to my left, I was faced with his rear in "go" position on his seat.

Honestly, I don't know if he borrowed his wife's aerobic lycra shorts or he just didn't feel like spending the money on the thicker grade of shorts, or if it was the combination of the copious sweating and the shorts straining to start pedaling again, but these shorts were pretty much translucent. And by translucent, I mean sheer enough to notice that it appeared he had opted not to wear underwear. And that, my friends, is the last thing that caught my eye.

Now, I don't care if you're David Beckham or George Clooney, no man is going to look good bending over a bicycle looking like you've got your junk squished into a cheap, black hairnet. I repeat, even that guy who made a baby with Halle Berry can't make it work. And vanity aside, it didn't look very comfortable either.

I wanted to tell this guy, hey, you've bought the bike and helmet. You're out on the road sweating your a$$ off (almost literally). Invest in some thicker shorts, my friend. It's time to go Pro.

So as I embarked on another season of softball as the least valuable player on my company team, I started going to the batting cages every week in an attempt to increase my contribution to this team. And I realized it's time for me to go Pro and confirm my commitment. I invested in some batting gloves. Finally.

And somewhere out there, that cyclist has gone Pro and is wearing comfortable opaque shorts. And I'm sure as he speeds along in ease, he realizes he should have gone Pro a while ago. But how else would I have learned my lesson?

Lesson learned, my friend. Lesson learned.

The icing on the Olympic cake

Personally, the coolest thing about the 2008 Olympic games was seeing my daughter get excited about them. Check out her home-designed shirt:

But the icing on the cake was when my friend's daughter, who was a swimmer in the games, brought back some souvenirs for the girl, such as a cool replacement shirt:

And some dreamy new bedmates (namely Beibei, Jingjing, Huanhuan, Yingying, and Nini!):

It'll be tough to top these guys.

Okay, and the countdown to 2012

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Olympics - the dark side

When the Olympics are over, it's kind of this sad denouement. I guess it's inevitable with an event that comes every four years. Kind of like when the Christmas tree comes down. Or the sobering day of Star Trek TNG marathons on January 2. The excitement and merriment of previous days over and now we're back to our regularly scheduled programming.

During the final days, I also had time to reflect on the dark sides of these Olympic games. Not just the controversy whether some of the female Chinese gymnasts met the minimum age of 16, despite previous editions of local Chinese papers listing one at age 14. Not just the Swedish wrestler who threw down his bronze medal in disgust after losing a chance at wrestling for gold after a bad judging call turns out he was right. Chinese gold medalists reap huge monetary rewards, possibly up to $300,000 (equal to about 100 years wages of a Chinese working in the city or 300 years working in the rural areas) and more with endorsements, but at what cost? Seeing your parents once a year, not seeing your toddler in a year, extreme dieting to maintain 66 pounds to enter the water like a razor when diving? Cheng Fei, the revered Chinese gymnast, had wanted to quit but her mother asked her to hold on "because we had invested so much and lived so bitterly” and she got to sleep in the house her gymnastics paid for the first time, when she participated in the torch relay in her province.

No, perhaps the nastiest moment in these 2008 Olympics was New York magazine's revelation on what Olympic event Sean "Diddy" Comb felt he could get the gold medal in:

"Who could have s*x the longest," he tells New York magazine. "I think that's an event I can do well in. And probably who could stay up the longest." He adds, "Just so you know, that's supposed to be funny. Even though I am serious."

Aaah-hahahahaha, way to wave the flag Diddy! Hahahaha...oh wait he's serious. Ick.

And the countdown begins to 2012.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


When you've been with someone for nearly 15 years and he's from Nebraska, you inevitably become sucked into the world of the Huskers and college football. To those who can relate, this has been a busy weekend.

Unfortunately, they weren't playing the Nebraska game out here on the left coast, but through the magic of the internet, we know the Huskers are starting out with a win this season. We're Bo-lievers with Bo Pelini taking the helm after the disappointing last couple of seasons. Hopefully we'll get to watch a game on one of the networks soon...

The big game, of course, was the UCLA-Tennessee game. I've watched Norm Chow work his magic from BYU to USC and now he's at UCLA. With a top defensive coordinator, DeWayne Walker, and Rick Neuheisel's inaugural year at the helm, this is a Cinderella story in the making for unranked UCLA with a thrilling OT win against #18 Tennesee tonight. I won't bother with the details like how the 1st and 2nd string UCLA QBs are out with injuries, how they lost four seniors in the first half, how the current QB threw 4 interceptions (one for a Tennessee touchdown) in the first half, how they drove down in the last 2 minutes to get a touchdown to lead with less than minute left and how Tennessee kicked the game-tying field goal with 5 seconds left, kicking it all into overtime. UCLA kicked a field goal in their drive and the Tennessee kicker, who brought it all into OT, missed his field goal kick. Poor guy. But what a way to start the season for UCLA. This may be a good sign for UCLA. Very intriguing indeed...