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Showing posts from January, 2005

No Limit Texas Hold 'em Poker Tournament

Last night I played my first No Limit Texas Hold 'em Poker Tournament . Like about 10 million other Americans I first learned about Texas Hold 'em poker while watching the World Series of Poker on ESPN about two years ago. Shortly thereafter, I was talking with a friend who plays poker regularly. Jerry told me about a website where you can play free online poker; Hold 'em, Omaha or Stud. I started playing for free, then a couple small online poker tournaments for cash. Then, one of SunFyre's readers who lives in my city, sent me an invitation to a Lions Club International fundraiser poker tournament. It had a $100 "donation" and the first prize was $3000. The top 10 players win money ranging from $100 to $3000, with a maximum of 200 players. I figured that this would be a good first-timer event for me for a couple reasons: The total payout was

Johnny Carson, King of Late Night, Dies

By JEFF WILSON LOS ANGELES (AP) - Johnny Carson , the "Tonight Show" TV host who served America a smooth nightcap of celebrity banter, droll comedy and heartland charm for 30 years, has died. He was 79. "Mr. Carson passed away peacefully early Sunday morning," his nephew, Jeff Sotzing, told The Associated Press. "He was surrounded by his family, whose loss will be immeasurable. There will be no memorial service." Sotzing would not give further details, including the time of death or the location. The boyish-looking Nebraska native with the disarming grin, who survived every attempt to topple him from his late-night talk show throne, was a star who managed never to distance himself from his audience. His wealth, the adoration of his guests - particularly the many young comics whose careers he launched - the wry tales of multiple divorces: Carson's air of modesty ma

16.7 Pound Baby Boy Born in Brazil

Ademilton, a 16.7 pound (7.57 kilogram) baby boy is seen at the Albert Sabin Maternity Hospital in Salvador, 1,450 kilometers (900 miles) northeast of Sao Paulo, in the state of Bahia, on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2005. Francisca Ramos dos Santos, 38, gave birth to the healthy boy named Ademilton on Tuesday. He was the largest baby born at the Albert Sabin Maternity Hospital in its 12-year history, the hospital said. 'Obviously the baby was born by Caesarean section,' hospital director Rita Leal said. 'Both mother and baby are doing just fine.' (AP Photo/Eleoi Correa, Agencia Estado) MSNBC-- A woman in Brazil gave birth Wednesday to a boy that doctors have nicknamed "giant baby." The infant weighs 17 pounds, about the average size of a six-month-old. He was delivered by Caesarean section. The boy's 38-year-old mother is diabetic, a condition which can commonly cause women to give birth to

Introducing Our New CEO

SunFyre Magazine has a new CEO, at least for a couple days. Michael, a.k.a. Thunderbot , didn't submit a bio, but I've gotten to know him a little. I'll tell you what little I know, I'll embellish a little, and I'll flat out lie for the rest. You get to figure out what is what. Michael "Thunderbot" Amadeus Mozart was born to an upper-middle class poor family. He lived in the poorest, most run down section of his entire housing development. His father barely made six figures. That's only one figure per mouth-to-feed. (Michael only had two siblings, but one of them had two mouths.) Thunderbot got his nickname at a young age. The "bot" part came because Michael is a power wheelchair user, and kids in school thought he looked like a robot. Michael says the "thunder" comes from a thundering personally, but we thought that sounded like bullsh

Super Bowl Predictions

My Monday morning pick to win Super Bowl XXXIX is the Philadelphia Eagles . They looked amazing against an over-rated Minnesota Vikings team. I don't think the Atlanta Falcons will be able to keep up in the NFC Title Game. I think the Pittsburgh Steelers will go on to win the AFC Championship Gam e, and, as we were hoping for several years ago, we will see an all-Pennsylvania Super Bowl. Going into Sunday, I was still predicting that the Indianapolis Colts could reverse their New England Patriots trend, and advance to the AFC Title Game. I think the only team that could beat Pittsburgh is Indianapolis. Unfortunately, Peyton Manning and his Colts won't get the opportunity.

The Dreams Return

My sleep had improved for several months. Thankfully, December was a great month. When I needed strength and health the most, my sleep apnea seemed to subside, and I had very few dreams . The dreams I did have weren't extremely vivid. They were just typical dreams, and usually, the only reason I remembered them is because I was awakened. The alarm would go off, or one of my kids would wake up, and I'd remember dreams or dream fragments. Since 2005 started, my dreams have returned. I'm more stressed than normal, and, oh yeah, I'm still disabled. I've been sleeping lighter, my sleep apnea has intensified, and the dreams have returned. Last night I dreamed that I was stranded at the mall with several other guys in wheelchairs. When I was in college, that was always a minor fear, because the city bus only had two wheelchair accessible seats. If three or four wheelchair users w

26 Excuses for Calling in Sick

I'm of the philosophy "Why waste a perfectly good Sick Day at home sick?" I'd much rather use sick days for mental health than physical health. I don't recommend you adopt my philosophy, frankly it hasn't served me well, and is one of the many reasons I'm currently self-employed. But, if you aren't self-employed, and you need a reason to call off from work, here's 20 of them actually used, according to the article. I was sprayed by a skunk. I tripped over my dog and was knocked unconscious. My bus broke down and was held up by robbers. I was arrested as a result of mistaken identity. I forgot to come back to work after lunch. I couldn't find my shoes. I hurt myself bowling. I was spit on by a venomous snake. I totaled my wife's jeep in a collision with a cow. A hitman was looking for me.

Lose Weight for the New Year and Look like Jennifer Garner

My Guilty Pleasure show is Alias, starring Jennifer Garner. The season premier was a two-hour special on Wednesday night. I watched it twice actually. Not because I'm obsessed, but a friend called me about 10 minutes before it started and asked me to tape it. She came over last night and watched it with me. You're wondering what this has to do with weight loss . Well, on January 1st, you and about half of America decided to make a resolution to lose some extra weight. On January 5th, advertisers decided you were too fat as well, especially those of you who watch Alias. The first time I watched the premiere was with Kristen, and about 3/4 of the way through I noticed an exceptional number of weight loss related ads. So many, in fact, that's why I sat through the entire episode again. Kristen helped me write down every weight loss or dieting related commercial. I came up with 15 companie

Sex, Dogs and Chickens -- Weird Headlines of 2004

LONDON (Reuters) - Humming sex toy shuts Australian airport. Taiwanese man tries to convert lions to Jesus, gets bitten. Talking toilet orders German men to sit down. Chinese get busy signal on Beijing suicide line. Judging by the bizarre headlines that greeted readers around the world, 2004 was a bumper year for the weird and wacky. Canadian guide dog barred for only answering its master's commands in French. Japanese boy writes apology in blood for dozing in class. The list is endless, living proof that truth is all too often stranger than fiction. A vibrating sex toy chucked into a rubbish bin at an Australian airport sparked a security alert that only ended when an embarrassed passenger came forward to claim what was identified as "an adult novelty device." A fervent evangelist who leapt into the lions' den at Taipei zoo and shouted "Jesus will save you" was lucky to escape with just a bite in the right leg when he tried to convert the ki

Killer Whale Gives Birth at SeaWorld

SAN DIEGO -- A killer whale was born Tuesday at SeaWorld San Diego. Kasatka, a 28-year-old killer whale, gave birth on December 21st, 2004 at 9:22 a.m. in Shamu Stadium's main show pool after a little more than two hours of labor. The healthy-looking calf instinctively swam to the surface to draw its first breath. The calf is estimated to weigh between 300 and 500 pounds and measures 6 to 7 feet. The calf's sex hasn't been determined yet. A blood sample will have to be drawn to determine the father. SeaWorld's zoologists say the mother and baby both appear healthy. The newborn calf is the fifth born at SeaWorld in San Diego and brings the park's killer whale population to eight.

The Year of Legacy -- January 1, 2005

Kristen and I want to build a house. We spent New Year's weekend driving around central Pennsylvania, looking at pieces of land. We saw a wide variety, from developments to farm land to building plots along rural routes. We found one situated directly beneath massive power lines, one next to a freeway overpass and one on a hill so steep all I could do was envision Homer Simpson bouncing down it yelling "doh, doh, DOH". Needless to say, it was a frustrating weekend. But, seven hours being a passenger gives you time to think, coincidentally one of my favorite things to do on January 1st. I had time to reflect, and time to focus on the important things in my life. Last year I made the resolution to make fewer resolutions and more results . This year I'm just making one: 2005 will be The Year of Legacy Most people don't think about legacy at my age, but I'm 34 now and have l