It’s a veritable sea of television riches

About a week ago, Gulley informed me she had purchased the new special issue of TV Guide featuring the scoop on all the new fall shows. Her exact words the next day were “I was up until midnight trying to power through the fall schedule”.

And I laughed.

But that was before she loaned me her copy of TV Guide and I, too, had to power through it.

This happens every fall. After the long television drought of summer, the promise of a brighter tomorrow in the form of quality viewing finally arrives. It’s such a hopeful time filled with much promise and anticipation.

Of course, for every “Friday Night Lights” there is a “Vanished”.

What’s “Vanished”?

That’s exactly my point.

So, after spending way too much time perusing the T.V. guide, while perhaps even using a highlighter, I believe I have come up with the shows I will watch or, at the very least, give a whirl.

Monday night is always a banner night. 4 words.

“Dancing with the Stars”. This year, they are using the term “star” loosely.

Although there will never be another Emmitt, this season features Wayne Newton, Marie Osmond and Jane Seymour. We’re bound to either see some good dancing or watch someone break a hip on national television. I am fired up.

Yes, I realize it came on yesterday, but I haven’t watched it yet. It’s waiting for me on the DVR because I’ve only had time to watch…

“The Bachelor”.

My enjoyment of “The Bachelor” has increased 100 fold since I’ve come to the realization that none of these couples will ever last. I just sit back and watch the drama unfold. Watching “The Bachelor” is the equivalent of eating 100 Kit Kats at one sitting, you know it’s too much, but it’s so good you can’t help yourself.

This season’s bachelor is from Austin, Texas. He owns a bar called The Chuggin’ Monkey. It’s obviously upscale.

And classy.

On Monday night, one woman even showed off her webbed toes in an effort to make a good first impression.

Webbed toes.

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

Well, except for this. Ladies, if any of y’all are single, do NOT show off your webbed toes on a first date. Webbed toes should be saved for at least the 11th date.

Or perhaps even marriage.

Tuesday nights have nothing to offer in my opinion. Which is a relief. It will give me time to read a book or something.

Although, let’s be honest, I’ll probably need this time to catch up on all the hour long dramas I am attempting to fit into my viewing schedule.

Wednesday nights present a huge dilemma for me. There are way too many shows I’d like to check out, but alas, I can only record two things on my DVR at one time. And that’s only if P isn’t home.

Because if he’s home, there is no way he’s going to sit around and not watch T.V. so that I can record “America’s Next Top Model”, “Private Practice”, and “Bionic Woman”, otherwise known as the Estrogen Fest.

Not to mention, he may want to record something like “Babe Winkelman’s Guide to the Outdoors”.

I wish I were kidding.

So, if I had to pick (It’s like Sophie’s Choice, how do I make this decision? Here have an arm. No, have a leg.) I’ll choose “Private Practice”. And truth be told, I can catch up with all the future top models on some kind of VH-1 marathon at some point.

Here’s a little secret. I don’t believe any of them have really gone on to be America’s Next Top Model, although one of them married the guy who played Peter Brady.

Not exactly a threat to Gisele Bundchen’s career.

I will be sad to let go of “Bionic Woman” because I have a glimmer of hope that it could fill the void in my heart that’s been there since “Alias” went off the air. No one will ever rock some hot pink hair like Sydney Bristow, but I feel like television is ready for another female that can kick some boo-tay.

This brings us to Thursday night.

Oh, Thursday nights. You have always been my night of must-see T.V. and you don’t disappoint. Once again, the DVR will be going at full steam. I’ll record “Ugly Betty” and “Grey’s Anatomy” to watch at a later time, while P and I will watch “My Name is Earl” and “The Office”.

Best of all, the first four episodes of “The Office” will each be an hour long.

God is good, my friends.

Last, but certainly not least, is “Friday Night Lights”. I think my love, bordering on obsession, for “Friday Night Lights” has been well-documented at this point. If I had to pick only one show to watch (and I think this post proves how hard that would be) I would choose “Friday Night Lights”.

Seriously.

Like I tell P every week, it’s the best show on television.

And that’s saying something because you have to work hard to be better than a cheesy reality show starring a bar owner who will date girls named Sheena and McCarten. ($50.00 says they made those names up to be memorable, which is a far better strategy than demonstrating your ability to be a human pretzel while on national television)

So, tell me I’m not the only one who seriously thought about charting out the fall T.V. schedule. What shows do y’all have to watch? Any new shows you’ll be giving a try?

And if you don’t watch T.V. and only read books, what’s that like?

I used to read, but then I had a child and now I have the attention span of a gnat, but not as many brain cells.

T.V. is my friend.

Until June

I believe I have mentioned that I am a fan of “Grey’s Anatomy”. One of the things I love about the show, other than Patrick Dempsey’s hair, is they play great music. Phenomenal, cutting edge music.

So every week, right after the show, I head over to the “Grey’s Anatomy” site to check out the songs played on the show, and then I download them like crazy on iTunes.

And then I feel really cool because I have something on my iPod other than Run D.M.C.

I wish I were kidding.

I am a fan of 80’s rap. I’ll just own it.

Anyway, given this love of music featured on “Grey’s Anatomy”, y’all can imagine my delight when some nice people sent me Until June’s debut CD.

Who is Until June you may be asking?

Until June recorded a little song called “What I’ve Done”, and the folks from Grey’s Anatomy heard it and used it on the episode where Addison leaves Seattle Grace for L.A., otherwise known as the set up for the new spinoff called Private Practice, which premieres this Wednesday night on ABC.

Word on the street is it has even been considered for the Private Practice theme song.

How cool is that?

And here’s the coolest part. Until June is a Christian band. Their music is incredible. And modern. And uplifting.

The band consists of two brothers, Josh and Dan Ballard, and Daniel Dempsey (no relation to Patrick, as far as I know, but I will say all the band members appear to have really good hair). They left their home in Arizona 3 years ago for L.A. to see if they could find success with their music. After a long, hard road, they finally gave themselves a deadline of June 2006.

Hence, UNTIL JUNE.

Is that clever?

I think so.

One of my problems with SOME Christian music is that it doesn’t sound current enough. I love bands like Coldplay and Ben Folds Five, but it’s hard to find something in the Christian genre that sounds like that.

Until June has that sound.

Their lyrics are uplifting and encouraging. They are filled with hope even in the midst of hard times and talk about redemption and forgiveness. They talk about their faith, life and love.

They may be my new favorite band. In all seriousness, if y’all are looking for something great to listen to, you’ve got to check out Until June. This CD is phenomenal.

I can’t even pick a favorite song because I’ll end up listing every song on the CD.

The other thing I love is that although they are a Christian group, their music appeals to everyone. In fact, when you look on their website, one of the places they are currently playing is The Viper Room in L.A.

I’ve never been to The Viper Room, but I’m willing to bet it’s a far cry from the First Baptist Church of Anytown, U.S.A.

I think it’s awesome that their music is reaching a wider audience. And you know what? That’s the sign of good music. That’s the sign of talent. That’s the sign of God using them for awesome things.

Check them out for yourself. Here they are singing “What I’ve Done”.

If you like them, I have one free CD to giveaway. Leave a comment and I’ll enter you in the drawing. And even if you don’t win, head over to iTunes and download it. You’ll be glad you did.

I’ll keep the comments open until Thursday.

When the moon hits your eye like a big dino nugget

We have got to start doing something exciting with our weekends. If we can’t step up our activity level, my posts will continue to suffer from lack of excitement. Oh, and we should do more stuff as a family and bond and blah, blah, blah.

I’m just not sure how compelling it is to read “I took a nap on Saturday”.

Anyway, I’ll soldier on because I’m like the guy at Dunkin Donuts. It’s time to make the donuts or write the blog post as the case may be.

And speaking of Dunkin Donuts, I read sometime last week they are opening 75 stores in the San Antonio area. Folks, that is ALOT of donuts. I mean, I am all for donuts. In fact, I’m such a fan it could be part of my campaign slogan if I were to ever run for PTA president or something, but 75 stores in one city?

It seems like a little munchkin overkill. (Isn’t that what they call their donut holes? I don’t want anyone to think I’m slandering little people)

On Saturday morning we headed to a birthday party for one of Caroline’s friends. It was at a local amusement park for little kids called Kiddie Park. And I’m using the terms “amusement park” and “for kids” very loosely. I mean, the kids love it but the little rides have definitely seen better days.

Case in point, check out the color of this water on the boat ride.

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I don’t even want to think about the results a water quality test would show.

Black plague anyone?

One of the other moms at the party told me she had been there a few weeks ago and the little roller coaster was closed. The park worker explained it was closed for repairs, then pointed over to a far corner of the ride and said, “Right over yonder is where they always lose an eye.”

Lord have mercy.

Always lose an eye?

It seems like that would have made the local news.

Either way, I think maybe we’ll stick to the carousel.

After the party, Caroline and I headed home. I took a little nap while she climbed all over me. It was very restful and soothing, much like the sound of nails on a chalkboard.

She finally wore me down and we went to Mimi and Bop’s house so she could swim. In case I haven’t mentioned it, it’s still about 116 degrees here every day. South Texas in the fall is very similar to hell.

But with mosquitoes.

Finally, we headed home. P had gone hunting for the evening and wouldn’t be back until later that night, so I asked Caroline if she wanted to order pizza since it was “just us girls”.

Last Saturday night, she stayed at Gulley’s while P and I hosted a baby shower. Gulley “made” the kids a pizza by unwrapping and heating up a frozen pizza in the oven. Caroline talked all week long about how delicious the pizza was that Gulley made.

So, I suggested pizza and she said sure, pizza sounded good. And said it with the same enthusiasm as if I’d asked her if she’d like to go dig a 10 foot ditch in the backyard.

And I know that because I frequently ask her to go dig large ditches in the backyard.

I put her in the bathtub and told her I was going to order the pizza. What kind did she want?

She sighed deeply and said, “There’s no way any pizza is going to be as good as the pizza Gulley made, I’ll just have dino nuggets.”

Yes, because Gulley slaved over that $3.00 frozen pizza. It was a labor of love.

But I guess what they say is true, DiGiorno really is better than delivery.