Summer time is garden time..

Tomatoes and cucumbers are the main crop again this summer. We had two yellow squash and then some insect that boars into the stem killed the squash plants. They also killed two of the pumpkin plants. The melon plants, no fruit so far again this year.  They never seem to produce in my yard.  The tomatoes have been ground up and frozen for the most part. The cucumbers have been pickled, eaten raw and given away.  I need to go out and pick tomatoes again tonight or tomorrow. There are lots of red “things” mixed in with the green leaves in the garden.

Other summer happenings include my DW and I going to the Tuckahoe Inn in Beasley’s Point, NJ to see Scott Kirby play. Scott is one of our favorites. We try to catch his shows when he is on the road in the summer time. During the winter he can be found at the Smokin’ Tuna Saloon in Key West, Florida.  Here is a link to the pictures I shot last night. I also shot a video of one of the songs and posted that song on You Tube.  We had great time even getting up to dance to two songs. We probably would have danced more, but I was concerned about leaving my camera at the table unattended. He will be back in New Jersey in August.  We are already planning on going to that show.

DS1 continues to work. He has found some friends that he is supposed to be moving into an apartment with in mid September. The apartment is closer to his current job and closer to Philadelphia (should he be looking to change jobs).  DS2 has returned from his week’s vacation in North Carolina with his girl friend’s family. He had a good time and learned how challenging a ten-year old child can be. DS3 is continuing to work in the landscaping business this summer. The  two college boys are looking forward to returning to school (and getting out of the house..).

Saturday we are planning to go to Annapolis for the day to see the Chesapeake Bayhawks  professional lacrosse game.  There is too much going on to stay the night (and the extra cost).

Here are a few pictures from the last week.  Enjoy, and thanks for reading!


Oh Brother, Where art thou?

This was the title of a movie released in 2000 set in the 1930’s Deep South.   That is according to the IMDb website. I have never seen the movie. The title is also appropriate to the bike ride my brother the weatherman and I did on Sunday, July 28, 2013.  We rode in the Harlem Valley Rail Ride 2013. The ride started and ended in Millerton, NY. Millerton is about 200 miles from where I live down the Jersey Shore.  Sunday morning, at 5 am, I drove to North Jersey and put my bike on the weatherman’s car and threw my gear in the backseat. He drove the other half of the ride to Millerton.

The ride had several choices for bike riders. 25, 50, 75 and 100 miles. Each of these rides had increasing difficulty due to elevation changes on the routes. I looked at the description of each of the rides and decided that I was not in good enough shape for any of the rides. Then listed on the bottom of the webpage, as an almost after thought note, that a 40 mile ride would be available with “no significant elevation changes”  I figured, I should be able to push myself to 40 miles. My longest ride for the summer was 36 miles. What is another 5 or so miles?

We found out what elevation changes are considered “insignificant” over a 41 mile ride. Notice the extra mile that crept in there?  The ride had many insignificant elevation changes that added up to 1040 feet of elevation gain. I was pretty beat by the end of the ride. Between miles 27 and 31 we rode through a torrential downpour. When it rains like that and you are on your bike, you just put your head down and ride. Set a pace and try to avoid the bigger puddles. After the ride they had a festival where you could eat all you want from the county BBQ that was set up. The local VFW had a beer truck set up selling beer to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project.  The food was good and the beer was cold. Just what was needed after chasing my brother though the “valley” around Millerton.

I walked a few of the hills, it was all I could do. He rode them all. I got to the top of a few of the hills and he had ridden on ahead. I eventually caught up to him each time. I think he would have finished the ride 30 minutes sooner if he had not peddled slowly waiting for me. Thanks for waiting for me!

He shot some pictures on his cell as we rode. I will add them to the bottom and caption them as necessary.  Thanks for reading!




Creepy Deams follow up..

My cousin submitted the following comment last week in response to the original Creepy Dreams blog post.  She is and always will be, an optimist. I like her interpretation, hopefully it’s her words to God’s ears (as they say).

Thank you for the comment and sharing that time in the fish market with me.



Submitted on 2013/07/23 at 11:29 pm

….I am not even going to pretend to be an expert on dreams, but since I walked those floors in Philadelphia for one of your 13 years, well, here goes. Barefoot in a 1/4 inch of that cold slimy water… nails on top of the good crab meat!  I would venture to say that you are happy and secure in your current line of work and that you do not regret leaving the fish business behind one bit.  The people that you valued treated you with respect (leaving you in charge) and those that you never really saw eye-to-eye with, well, they haven’t changed (limp handshake but will fix it when directed to do so).  Lack of supplies (pencils, price lists) understandable since YOU had not been there to make sure essential items were in place. …my two cents.  Good night!

Creepy dreams..

This blog will (not so boldly) go where no blog has gone before. I’m unsure about publishing this, so if you get to read it, then it turned out as “publishable”.

As an avid reader you will no doubt recall that I have been riding my bike for the last month as part of a Tour De France challenge.  The tour and the challenge are over and so is the getting up at 5:51 am to go ride. I have set my alarm the last two morning, but turned it off and gone back to sleep.  This morning after turning off the alarm, I went back to sleep and experienced a creepy dream. Hopefully by writing it down, I can figure out what it means. And no, I don’t usually remember my dreams.

A bit a background to make the dream “make sense”.  My first real job back in the day was working in a wholesale seafood company as a truck driver (in North Jersey).  After two years I was in charge of production at the business until I left for a different job after 5.5 years of employment. My next reasonably long-term job was in the wholesale fish market in Philadelphia where I worked for 13 years. I met quite a few characters in the fish market being that the work hours were from 3 am to noon time five days a week.  I went to computer school after 13 years of the fish market and left the seafood industry in 2002.

Fast forward to the dream..

The setting was the fish business in North Jersey. I had been “away’ from the company for a while (years?).  My job that morning was to go into NYC with the market truck and get the fish for the day. The dream starts with me pulling into the yard at work with the truck loaded with fish. I walked into the back of the business and met one of the owners of the Philadelphia fish market where I had worked. He told me he was going home early and that I was in charge. Then he took me outside and pointed out the fleet of blue vans in the yard and said that work would be slow and that we should use the vans for deliveries that day.  (Have I lost you yet?)

Back inside I go for a walk through the building to see what is there since I had not been in the building for many years. As I am walking from one section to another I notice that I am not wearing shoes. I am barefoot on the cold, wet, slimy floor. Hmm, I notice this and wonder where my shoes are. (A self-aware dream?)

I walked into the fresh crabmeat cooler and see the guy who ran the crabmeat cooler in Philadelphia, working at the fish business in North Jersey.  I picked up a can of fresh crabmeat looking for something “nice” to sample. I pulled the top off the container and it contained a nail clipper, some screws, nuts and bolts and underneath that, crabmeat. I did not tastes it since the metal objects were in the can. The guy working there said they were ‘samples”. The next package I picked up was a combination of fresh mozzarella and fresh crabmeat.  In one package. The pieces of crabmeat were big, pinkish red in color (should be white), but they tasted good.

I walked back out to the production area to watch the owner of the business walk by without acknowledging my presence. I looked down and now I had socks (not sure of the color, maybe white) and flip-flops. Standing next to me where three guys looking to buy fish. We rarely had walk up customers in North Jersey but always had them in Philadelphia. As I was looking to write down their order I could not find a pencil, pen or paper. What I found was stubs of pencils, pieces if pens, damp paper and a fine-line highlighter that did not write too well. (Pretty realistic)

I slid open the window to the billing office to ask for a pen, paper and a price sheet and the guy in the office was also a former employee from Philadelphia. I said hello since we had not seen each other in years and put my hand out to shake his hand. He stuck out his hand, the hand shake was awkward, limp-wristed and not really sincere (from his side). I told him to shake my hand like a man, and he did.

So, no price lists were available, no paper or pens to share.  Just get the work down. I turned back to the customers and one of them was holding a bag with salmon in it. He said I have three salmon that weigh 27.1 lbs. I took the broken pencil and started the order: 8/10 salmon – 27.1 lbs.  Looked at the paper and the writing was bad. Tight, small block letters like a really old person who was having trouble with arthritis might write. This was disturbing since I had written the words. My handwriting isn’t the best, but it certainly is legible.

They also wanted some flounder fillets and some frozen shrimp.  I went over to the production table where there were tubs of various fish fillets waiting to be packed. The flounder fillet was a little past its prime. I flipped a piece over and smelled it. Fair, saleable but not something I would take home to my family. I wrapped up their 5 lbs of flounder and returned to the order table where I was writing up their order. They open the package and decided they did not want the flounder after all.  The customers that I was working with were a composite of several frequent customers during my days in Philadelphia.

Then I woke up, glad to be in my bed, not back in North Jersey in the fish business.

What does it all mean? I don’t know. It was just so vivid. I can still see some of the scenes in my head almost 6 hours later.

No pictures (just in my head)


Triumphant ride into Manahawkin..

Maybe one of the last Tour De France blogs for this year. Today was the final day the Map My Ride (an app for your phone) Tour De France Challenge.  The challenge, if you have been just clicking Like and not reading (just kidding), has been to ride your bike for at least 20 minutes each day the riders in the Tour De France ride their bikes.  I completed the challenge this morning at 8:55 am. That noise you heard was the cheering throngs lining Lime Guy Bouvard cheering me on to the finish. The reality was quite different (as it usually is). I did finish my nearly 25 mile ride this morning around 8:55 am, but there was nobody home except for my DW. The neighbors were hiding behind their air conditioning. A quiet morning in the neighborhood.

I finished the challenge having ridden 306 miles in 23 rides. Out of 24,956 participants, I am ranked number 2939!  Not bad to a 53-year-old man who could stand to lose a few pounds.  It was a lot of work. There were lots of mornings at 5:51 am when the alarm went off that I wanted to roll over. Now what? I will ride less frequently, but the health benefits should continue.  And, it has not rained here in Manahawkin in the morning since at least June 29 th!

Children, where are they today? Funny that you should ask. Let’s see, DS1 is in Philadelphia with a childhood friend after spending Saturday in NYC at a concert on Governor’s Island.  He is scheduled to come home after work tomorrow. DS2 is on the Outer Banks of North Carolina with his girlfriend and her family. They had a very long drive from the Jersey shore to Cape Hatteras yesterday. I’m glad I was not in the car. DS3 is on the train from New York’s Penn Station to Long Branch, NJ. He spent the day in NYC with his girlfriend. She lives out on Long Island, so the city is a good central place for them to meet.

My DW went to yoga this morning.  I took a short nap after riding while she went to class. Then we went grocery shopping. See, the Lime Guy life is not all glamour and Hollywood parties! I worked in the garden this afternoon harvesting a 5 gal bucket of tomatoes and cucumbers. Most of the tomatoes got ground up for sauce and frozen for the winter. I will probably be bringing cucumbers into work to give away this week.

The boardwalk in Seaside Heights is open! Really. We went there Friday night and there were not many people. Get out while you can, summer is going to pass you by!

Here are a few pictures with captions.  Enjoy, and thanks for reading..  Who needs PRISM? Just read the blog, dude!




Hiding in plain sight..

Summer time and the living is easy.. Isn’t that a line from a song?  A quick Google search turns up that the song is called Summer Time by George Gershwin.  It is actually listed in Wikipedia as an   aria composed by George Gershwin for the 1935 opera Porgy and Bess. The lyrics are by DuBose Heyward, the author of the novel Porgy on which the opera was based, although the song is also co-credited to Ira Gershwin by ASCAP.  Thank you to the good people at Wikipedia for the copy and paste! 

Easy? Maybe not. With the heat over the last week or so here on the East Coast of North America we have been hiding in plain sight. Indoors with the a/c running. Watering the plants and hiding from the mosquitos. I have continued my Map My Ride Tour De France challenge, riding my bike each day. I am certainly missing that hour of sleep between 5:50 am and 7:05 am that has been sacrificed to the challenge.  Five or so more days to the tour and the challenge. After that? I will probably skip a day here and there but hopefully continue to ride.

Other notable goings on here in NJ..

  • DS1 has joined the Dark Side trading in his Black Berry Curve for an iPhone 4S. The Black Berry was pretty beat up.
  • DS2 is going on vacation to the Outer Banks with his GF and her family. They are stopping here for dinner Friday night.
  • DS3 continues to work, his finger is getting better. In another week he should be able to carry on without a bandage
  • Student loans are in the works for another school year, I won’t miss the mid-July student loan stress once they are all done with college.
  • Next weekend I will be traveling to Millerton, NY for the Harlem Valley Bike Ride.  40 miles on the valley floor with “no significant elevation changes” We’ll see how that works out.
  • Looking to go to Annapolis for the Bayhawks professional lacrosse game on August 3.
  • DW took a hot yoga class Monday night. When I got home from lacrosse her face was ruby-red. I thought she had been crying, not the case. Just overheated.
  • I scored on goal during Monday night lacrosse.

We went to a car show at a local watering hole after dinner tonight. Here are a few pictures from that visit.  Enjoy and thanks for reading!



More events and efforts..

Odd title. Sometimes I just don’t know where they come from! Time for the bullet points, here we go..

  • DS1 had the July 4th off, worked July 5 and 6. Went fishing on the beach July 7. He did not catch dinner. Thankfully the Shop Rite has lobsters on sale this week.
  • DS3 was in Long Island visiting his girlfriend. He got back home Sunday, July 7 at dinner time. His girlfriend, her friend and DS3 went to the Warp Tour at the Arts Center for a few hours. Then they came here for dinner and to sleep. DS3 worked on Monday, the ladies went home around 1 pm (back to LI)
  • DS2 spent the weekend in Austin, TX. Thank you to his cousin for providing a couch and someone with local knowledge (and a car). DS2 returned home Monday around dinner time. He was back to work today.
  • DW is sick. Nasty, coughing, fever (like I had in May) sick. It started Saturday and by Monday morning it was full-blown. She will hopefully return to work on Thursday.
  • Me, I have been riding my bike everyday. I am part of a bike riding challenge during the Tour De France. The challenge is to ride each day the riders in France ride. So far so good. I played lacrosse Monday night and had a goal and an assist. Tonight, I went to yoga without my DW (sick). I was the only male in the class. I think they were surprised that I went to class without her.
  • The garden is starting to produce. We have picked cucumbers, tomatoes and blueberries. Hopefully by next week we will have enough cucumbers to start making pickles. We also should have yellow squash for the weekend.
  • The next scheduled organized ride will be Sunday, July 28 in Millerton, NY.  Check out
  • It has been hot for the last two weeks.
  • We went to Barnegat fireworks this year. A mile walk from the car to the dock (each way). I guess I needed the exercise.

Here are a few pictures from the last week, enjoy!


More bike riding nonsense..

This past Sunday at 5:45 am I found myself standing outside the local bagel store waiting (not patiently) for them to open the doors so I could get my breakfast and head north to Queens, NY for the 6 th Annual Tour De Queens.  The Tour De Queens was just like the Tour De Brooklyn that I rode in back in June. Except for the one ride being in Queens and the other in Brooklyn.  Let me say right here that is was hot!

 On the ride into Queens I got stuck for 15 minutes as they set up a  construction zone with barrels and cones on the BQE.  I hate the BQE.  I can’t say that I have ever had an easy ride on that road.  The ride started out in Astoria Park.  As we lined up for the ride we were looking up at the Tri Boro Bridge above and the East River to our right.  Parking? That was a joke. Near the park there were not enough spaces for the people that live there not to mention the 1250 cyclists that invaded their little corner of paradise that Sunday morning. Driveways and fire hydrants were the sentinels of the empty curb spaces. I did finally find a spot and get dressed and checked before the ride started.

The ride is (as described last month) a 20 mile parade of 1250 bike riders with full NYC police support. The police lead the parade and closed the intersections as the bikes were ready to cross the intersections.  I rode in the front 200 riders for most of the day. I would guess that once the intersections were closed they stayed closed for the better part of 15 minutes.  The total distance of the ride was 20 miles. On the Map My Ride course sheet, you can see the actual course that I rode on Sunday.

I had a few interesting moments on Sunday. I rubbed wheels (my front to their back wheel) twice. Neither time anyone crashed. I saw three people crash on their bikes. One guy bounced off a parked car, the other two lost control and fell to the pavement with less than a mile to go left in the ride. We rode past the entrance to Rikers Island (the NYC prison). We rode past an entrance to La Guardia International Airport.  We got “showered” by a fire hydrant with a shower cap installed. And I got a really nice shirt as a souvenir.

Pictures, yeah well, I took a few. Here are a few and here is a link to the Drop Box folder with the entire set.




Common sense?..

Gone out the window for sure.  In my best Rod Serling voice..

Consider this, you are in a restaurant. Your meal is late coming to the table and you have had a few adult beverages (maybe more than a few). You are laughing and having fun with your table companions. Suddenly, your dinner shows up! Starving , you grab your fork and start to shovel the food into your mouth without even tasting or cutting your food.

You start to choke, the food that you would not cut has gone down your wind pipe. Suddenly you are seeing stars and your face gets red and then starts to turn blue. You bang you fist on the table and try to cough, no luck. You turn to the person closest to you and you grab your neck with both hands, the international symbol for “I’m choking to death”.

Quickly your companion gets behind you, makes a fist and does the Heimlich Maneuver on you. The food becomes dislodged and your life has been saved. You immediately attempt to swallow the same piece of food without cutting it up. Results? Now the food is stuck in your esophagus and you are going to the hospital in the middle of the night to have a doctor remove (for the last time) this piece of dinner.

The moral of the story?

If you choke on your dinner and someone has to save your life, do them a favor and spit the piece of food out and try another piece. That piece of food won the battle.

Common sense?


 PS. A true story (did not happen to me, thankfully!)

RTX 2013..

What is RTX 2013? Heck, I had to do a Google search myself. RTX 2013 is “Where Gaming meets the Internet” Why are we interested? Well, DS2 is there for the next three days. Where is there?  There is Austin, Texas.  Last year DS2 decided he wanted to go so he bought the ticket and arranged his own airfare. He flew from LGA to IAH to AUS.  Now LGA would not have been my departure airport of choice, but the airfare deal made it worth it for him. And, he drove himself to the airport.

He is staying with the son of my older brother. The son lives in Austin. He picked DS2 up at the airport and is providing a couch to sleep on. Last night they went to Lake Travis to swim and watch the fireworks.  This morning DS2 is off to the convention center for RTX 2013.

Are you there at RTX 2013 or in Austin and want to meet up with DS2? Shoot me a message and I will help you get connected (if possible).

Here are a few pictures from his trip that he sent last night.  Enjoy!


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