Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Before and After

We made it! Teeth Bleaching is over.

Take a look at the results. Above was taken on March 17, 2011. Below was taken yesterday.

My teeth aren't exactly "white", but they are certainly "whiter" wouldn't you say? As for the quitting caffeine cold turkey, my withdrawal symptoms went away after three or four or five days.

To my delight, once I got through the headaches, nausea, fatigue, and disorientation, I actually liked being off it. I even toyed with the idea of continuing to abstain for awhile. Maybe forever. I discovered I had more sustained energy, no jitters, and remained regular (is that TMI?). In the end, it lasted zero days. The first morning off bleaching, Dave Dave woke up at four in the morning, and by six I had succumbed to that beautiful, dark brown, elixir of life.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


My brother-in-law Chad Simpson is a stud. That's him holding the iguana he just caught while we were in Mexico last summer.

Over the last year he's been training to compete in American Ninja Warrior. Last Monday, they aired the Southwest Regional Semifinals. Chad placed sixth out of thirty semifinalists. He was the first to complete the course at night. And yet, for some STUPID reason, I don't know if it was an intern who forgot to press the record button or what, but for some reason they did not show even a SNIPPET of Chad's sixth place finishing run. They didn't even say his name!

It's a travesty. That's all I can say. I know it's just a TV show, and frankly Chad is handling it all far better than the rest of his family, but I just need to state this for the record: you made a mistake NBC. You screwed up. I want you to make it up to all of Chad's fans (there are many).

Air Chad's run in the finals or else!!!!

(For those of you who don't know Chad or have not seen him in action, here's a short video of him acing the cliffhanger challenge at his local rock climbing gym.)

We love you Chad! They'll have to show you next year, when you win!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

No Pain No Vain

In my never ending quest to carefully not take myself too seriously, I will now share with you perhaps the most vain thing Lia and I have ever done.

We are bleaching our teeth. 

Nice Mold!

Lia's gotten tired of coming up with answers when her patients ask her, "Why do you have a golden tooth?" The truth is the tooth next to the "golden" one was knocked out a long time ago and was replaced by a pearly white prosthetic, making her real tooth golden by proximation. So I can understand. She's got a good excuse. It almost counts as a medical one. Almost. 

Me. I'm just vain. I told myself this morning that if I had whiter teeth that maybe I would smile more and make other people smile more and therefore make the world a better place - which, quite frankly is something I strongly believe in. However, giving myself white teeth to bring about world peace is, I admit, a reach. 

One Week In!
So good and bad excuses out of the way...it was time to get down to business. 

Now here is where the rubber meets the road: we were told (this may have been a joke) that teeth bleaching works best if you do not partake in teeth darkening products, i.e. wine and coffee while bleaching. 

Oh boy. 

I can just drink beer but no coffee? NO COFFEE? This is the reason Lia and I talked about but put off bleaching the last six months. It's also the reason Lia pushed our start date from April to May. 

But if she was going to escape the torment of coming up with golden teeth excuses, it was going to have to happen some day.

So we began two days after I returned from Seattle. One last great cup of joe from The Station in Beacon Hill! 

The first day was not so bad. 

The second day was a different story. I felt like crap. It's the only word for it. Actually, I can think of other words, but I'll just say crap and keep my blog PG. It was awful. The worst headache in the history of headaches. 10.0 on the Richter Scale. It started down my neck and crawled up over my head and took hold of my ears and slammed them together like cymbals. The problem was my brain was in the way. 

That was 9am. By 9:30am I had stopped trying to work and started perusing websites about caffeine withdrawal.  

ScienceDaily (May 1, 2009) — Ever miss your daily cup of coffee and subsequently get a pounding headache? According to reports from consumers of coffee and other caffeinated products, caffeine withdrawal is often characterized by a headache, fatigue, feeling less alert, less energetic and experiencing difficulty concentrating.

Interesting article actually. Here is the link: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090501162805.htm

Let's see...headache (yes), fatigue (yes), feeling less alert (huh?), less energetic (yes) and experiencing difficulty concentrating (what was that? oh, yes). 

I was dying. That was precisely what it felt like. 

So I took a nap from 10 to 11:30 and woke up feeling worse... 

...Each day has gotten better praise Jesus. And it's hard to say for sure but I think my teeth have changed from dark yellow to bright yellow! 

Lia and I (or maybe just me) will post before and after pictures soon.  Be sure to check back!

Monday, May 07, 2012

Moon Tidings

We learned that the moon was going to be 14% bigger on Saturday night.

When I say we, I mean Rick Newell. We were in Seattle (where he lives) for a working-sesh and good times weekend.

He is the originator of a golf cartoon strip called Life in the Trap. You should check it out (Oh, and there soon will be an app for that - stay tuned). http://www.lifeinthetrap.com/golfcartoon.php

He and I are also working on a top secret young adult sci-fi trilogy based on this language called Water Tongue (also originated by Rick Newell). http://watertongue.com/

Obviously, it's not so secret since I'm writing about it. I won't keep this secret either - it's really good. Can't wait to get the story out there - stay tuned.

Anyway, back to the 14% bigger moon...So the first thing that comes to Rick's mind is, you guessed it, tides. It just so happens his parents own a place on Puget Sound. From what I understood, the next morning was going to be one of the lowest tides in years.

We got out there about 10:30 (Low tide was at 11:30) and, I'm not going to lie to you, the water was so cold I cried. Now, I've been in some cold water in my day, but this was the first time it brought me to tears. (North Carolina must be making me soft.)

Rick, Rebecca, and Eli out in the middle of Puget Sound

We head out to this sandbar, which eventually just becomes part of the beach and skimboard and look for shells and find sunstars, starfish,

This Purple Sea Star was bigger than my head
crabs, and the craziest of them all - the geoduck (pronounced goo-wee-duck). They are giant clams that have a strange resemblance to the male specimen.

If you have eight minutes to spare, watch the Dirtiest Jobs with Mike Rowe video - it's mind blowing and laced with male potty humor.


We tried our best to shovel the geoduck out, but with only our hands and a wiffle ball bat, we didn't stand a chance.

Afterwards, we were treated to lunch by Rick's parents. Then, Rick and I went back to work until dinner. He introduced me to Dick's Burgers on Broadway of Sir Mix-A-Lot fame ("Dick's is the place where the cool hang out" - Posse on Broadway). Then, headed over to a park where I dared Rick to climb this fountain.

"The gauntlet has been thrown," was his reply. Next thing I know he's climbing this thing in his Rainbows.

You are the man, Rick!

It was a great weekend. Minus missing Lia and the kids, I could have stayed out there forever. But alas, all great times come to an end.

I took the red-eye and got in this morning. Fortunately, Lia hooked me up with some Ambien (hope she doesn't lose her license over me saying that). All I know is that I'm talking to this Alaskan guy sitting next to me as we are waiting to depart. He says the words "deadliest catch" and I wake up with my head on his shoulder as the plane touches ground in Atlanta.

That's all I'm going to say about that.

It's good to be home.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Join the Hub Bub

This is one of those ask forgiveness later deals. Charlie doesn't know that I hijacked his website peculiarpeople.com But I believe what Charlie and Ruth are doing in Greensboro is so great I want to give you a chance to jump on board! Below is info on two things: the Hub and the Grub. 
If you want more information, feel free to contact me or Charlie. (Don't mention the hijacking part) Gracias!
Click on "Hub2" for a cool powerpoint Charlie made. Hopefully, this link works. If not, go to their website.

What is "The Hub"?

Soooo glad you asked. The Hub is our nickname for all the various activities, community events, coffee shop, stage and residential housing planned for our magnificent building at 614 S. Elm St., Greensboro, NC! Take a few minutes to watch the slide show above that explains in more detail. But to be brief, our plans are to convert this old hotel into a hub activity which include the following:
Greensboro Grub: This is the community dinner we offer once a month. People from all walks of life find a home, a warm meal and loving interaction.
PB & Java: A Dessert Bar & Coffee Shop specializing in all things Peanut Butter! A community gathering place for coffee, internet, conversation, food and friends.

Spittin’ Image Performance Spot (SIPS): A place for actors, singers, performers, songwriters, poets and artists to offer their work to the community. A meeting place of joy.

Professional Academy of  Performing Arts (PAPA):
Teaching & mentoring underprivileged urban kids in the Performing Arts. Eventually becoming professional school for all ages developing actors, dancers, singers and writers.

Namida Residential  Studies: Using the 15 rooms on the 2nd floor, we hope to offer internships and training for others seeking to reach the City through the Arts and rich Community.
Over the next few years we will be raising funds (hint: notice the donation link below!) to make these plans a reality. Contact us and arrange an appointment to come see da place! We could have a meal together or have coffee on the front step and dream of the day we will drinking it on the inside!
How Can I Help?
Well, we can't do it alone! Really!! Please consider putting Peculiar People and The Hub on your prayer list! Pray for us. Then come to the Vision Weekend this November. And lastly, click the button below to donate online. Of course, we are available by phone, email or (even better) in person to talk to you about our dreams, our vision and our needs.

Greensboro Grub - News & Record

Published February 15 2009
Greensboro Grub - News & Record
News & Record takes an in depth look at the Greensboro Grub.  The detailed account takes a look at prep work, appetizers, the main course, desert, after-dinner entertainment, and more!

When they moved to Greensboro last year, they reinstated the monthly dinners. Except here, it’s called Greensboro Grub. And in addition to their friends, they invite local artists, writers, musicians and actors. It’s a way to meet other artists.
After dinner, guests share their talents. The Jones usually perform a skit. Some people play musical instruments or sing. Others may recite a poem or passage from a book they’re reading.
“It’s just been glorious.” Charlie Jones says.
Grubs are usually booked within 12 hours, once Charlie Jones posts the notice on his Web site.
He thinks of these gatherings as a mission a way of reaching out to others to spread goodwill and love. And to gather people from all walks of life and introduce them to each other.
They are Christians and non-Christians. Old and young. Black, white and Asian. Gay and straight.
At Greensboro Grub, it doesn’t matter who you are. All are welcome.
In less than two hours, the Joneses expect nearly 60 people for dinner.
If they’re at all stressed about this, it doesn’t show. Charlie Jones, wearing a blue apron and a smile, sips a Yuengling and pours creamy cornbread batter into a baking pan…