"Employees Must Wash Hands"

Does this sign in various restrooms of eating establishments trouble everyone as much as it troubles me? It feels like a total Seinfeld rip-off, but I can't help it....

Why REALLY is this sign posted in bathrooms?
Do employees in the service and food industry really need to be reminded to wash their hands after using the restroom? ("I don't normally wash my hands, but the sign says I have to so... what the heck")


Is it really there to give confidence to paying customers? (You know - in case there was any doubt before you entered the bathroom ... rest assured ... there is a SIGN - so that must mean hands ARE being washed by employees before returning to work.)

It turns out -- that employees failing to wash their hands after going to the bathroom is a federal (and state) healthcode violation. Problem is -- there really is no way to track and enforce this. SO ... I'm assuming that brilliant people somewhere decided ... "Why don't we make sure that restaurants are mandated to hang this sign in bathrooms. Once every 6 years, we'll send someone to random restaurants and fine those that don't have the sign in the bathroom...That way, it will APPEAR that we are tracking and enforcing the healthcode violation."

Anyway - I felt the need to point this out as everytime I see it in restrooms it irks me. I feel vented.


Herman Weinstein (1913 - 2006)

My grandfather passed away on Monday (February 20th), so yesterday I said good-bye to him for the final time. As sad as death itself is, I don’t feel completely sorrow today. I know this probably doesn’t sound right – but let me try to explain.

In his 92 years on this earth, my grandfather lived a damn full and complete life. I thought my mother and uncle did a perfect job recapping it in their words at the funeral yesterday. The cliff notes are as follows:

  • He was married for 64 years to my grandmother! My sister and I are convinced that Seinfeld and Larry David ran into my grandparents somewhere in Sunrise Lakes Phase 3, and then modeled Frank and Estelle Costanza (George’s parents’) after them on the hit show.
  • He was beyond proud of his family. It was seldom that he didn’t tell me how great or beautiful my mother was…
  • He was a somewhat quiet man (especially on the phone), well, until he felt comfortable. Feeling comfortable was either being with his family or having 2 glasses of scotch. After which, he was certainly no longer shy….
  • Professionally, he was a “jack of all trades.” I still don’t know for sure what he actually did… (He was an army veteran, a mechanic, a singing waiter, a boxer, and a slew of other things)
  • Although I called him “grandpa” it was clear that he really just wanted to be our “pal.” He was a fun dude – there’s just no other way to phrase it.
  • In his spare time, he loved to bowl, play pool, and go to the race track. As my grandmother puts it, he also enjoyed “speaking in Jewish” (yiddush) to anyone who would listen.
  • He certainly enjoyed his whiskey and his food. Foods that come to mind are sausage, herring, and pickles. (Strangely enough, I don’t remember him eating my grandmothers chopped liver – which believe it or not was my (and my sisters) favorite.

As a grandson, my role is to take things from him and pass them down to my kids (besides the good looks of course). In thinking about this yesterday, 2 things dawned on me:

1) He rarely asked general questions like “How are you?” He would ask things like “Are you happy?” …I think I’d like to try and take that with me down the road. Obviously there needs to be a comfort level with someone before asking questions like that – but I do admire the fact of boiling down a question to what you want to know. To him – happiness was all that mattered. Not money or material things, not popularity or anything else. As simple as it sounds – he really just always wanted me to be happy with my life -- regardless of any of the details – and I would like to take that with me.

2) The man never seemed to worry. I can’t say he was 100% stress-free (mostly in thanks to my grandmother), but he always seemed to just take things as they came.

So, congrats on a great life Grandpa! You will certainly be missed most by your wife (Grandma Crannie), but Roz, Ron, Bruce, Ellen, Lauren, Jill, Fred, Amy and I will all miss you very much and will think about you often. I especially will have you in my thoughts when I go bowling or go to the racetrack.


Stupid, yet common hangover prevention idea

I had bigger plans for this post, a pseudo “investigative blogging” type thing, but unfortunately almost finished with the process, my browser crashed and I lost everything. That was over a week ago and I have yet to replicate my work, however, I still wanted to get my thoughts out … So – here it is – nice and short.

It turns out that my “genius” remedy for hangovers in college (Tylenol and a big glass of water before I went to sleep) was actually a very stupid idea… Apparently, the main ingredient in Tylenol (acetaminophen) is considered extremely dangerous to one’s liver if mixed with alcohol. If you don’t believe me – just read the warning label of the actual Tylenol bottle…..

When I learned this, my first thought was – well ok – I actually think I’m more of an Advil taker due to the coating on the pills tasting like sugar… Well – I was wrong here too (and not about the sugar taste). Turns out that Advil and alcohol mixture is just as bad – but this time potentially causing Ulcers and stomach bleeding.

Now – I don’t bring this up to scare anyone from anything they’ve done in the past or the future. The warning label considers the worrisome action to be “3 or more drinks each day,.” Now I definitely don’t have 3 drinks every day (although in college this was fairly standard) – however in reading up on the topic online – it appears that several doctors/specialists warn against use after ANY heavy alcohol use….

So I don’t have any solution of trying to limit a hangover other than drinking a glass of water per drink you consume (this slows down the pace at which you drink liquor). There have also been other products in the market like “The Chaser,” but I’ve never tried that. Apparently there are a bunch of myths out there – so do whatever works for you (except be careful with the Advil and Tylenol route).


Delonte West's Perfect Date

Thanks to my boy David J. for passing this my way ....

Delonte West is on our Fantasy Basketball team. He's been a very under-rated guy for us this year - helping us to the top of the standings currently. This being said - I'm a huge fan.

It's hard not to be a bigger fan after reading this ESPN Article where he describes his vision of a perfect Valentine's Day date.

Freakin hilarious...


Snow storm record?

So apparently there was a record snow storm on Saturday. The largest snow fall in New York City history - 26.9 inches in a 24 hour period...

Was there a lot of snow? ....Yes.
Was it windy?.... Yes.
Are the streets still covered with dirty slush? .... Yes.

Did it feel like it should be considered as the larget snow storm that the city of New York has ever seen? ... NO WAY.

Granted - I didn't leave my apartment on Sunday - however - is it only me who thinks that it's the most weenie record breaking snow storm ever? (well - of all the places that regularly get snow)

Of course I'm not trying to tempt the snow storm gods into proving anything, I merely wanted to document that the effects really aren't "that" bad... (i know - I'll avoid telling that to the city workers who cleaned up the mess). I'm surviving - even with my snow boots which are a full size too big...


What makes a good Super Bowl party?

Last night Amy and I went to the Browns for SuperBowl XL. It was a great time! Definitely what I would call a Super Bowl party success. Certainly, everyone will have their own requirements for what makes a super bowl party a blast or bust - but here are mine (in no particular order):

1) Good people -- It certainly helps when good friends are in the mix, but friends of friends is cool too...As long as people have a good, festive attitude - everything seems to work out. Nobody likes mean people - especially on Super Bowl Sunday.
2) Good Food (Some of it being home-cooked) -- Obviously a holiday isn't a holiday without eating - but the little detail having home-cooked food at your superbowl party is quite under-rated. I think it adds a sense of "sophistication" or maybe just good old TLC, but there is something about it that makes is more special that way.
3) A rooting interest -- Many go to high stakes gambling, others go to office box pools, and some actually just genuinely want one of the teams to win...BUT...in order for someone to truly enjoy the day, there needs to be a rooting interest. (That is why one may here random females saying they hate the super bowl)
4) Ability to listen to commercials - During the 16 regular season weeks, I have typically gone to a sports bar to get all my NFL action at once. On Superbowl Sunday, however, I am anti-bar as a location. Working in the advertising industry, I like to be able to appreciate the creative executions in real-time (if desired). No, I didn't "Sush" anyone last night if there was a commercial I wanted to see - but luckily it was an intimate enough affair that I could listen if I wanted to. (Side note - you can see all of the Super Bowl Commercials from yesterday here)
5) Comfortable-enough seating - Now this is certainly tough, especially in NYC. BUT - it is over a 4 hour commitment to watch the Superbowl. I don't care how "easy going" I am, 4+ hours sitting on the floor ain't fun. I'm not saying that I need my own Lazy-boy with built in surround-sound (which would be cool), but my legs are too long and I am too old to sit on the floor.

I know it seems simple - but that's it. Of course things like "winning your bets," "a bunch of drunk hot girls," or "actually going to the game" can certainly IMPROVE your time, but they are not required.

Thanks to The Brown's for hosting a great Superbowl 2006 party. Looking forward to doing it again in 2007.


Super Bowl Box Pool Analysis

I am officially in 4 Super Bowl box pools. In the spirit of that - I wanted to share some analysis and history of this event. It was done by a guy named Rick Deutsch (who I don't know - but learned he used to go out with one of my friends in high school) Here it is:
Ah yes, it's that time of year again...Super Bowl Boxes are being
filled out as we speak! A time when friendly office competition turns
ugly, when any man's 10 spot is as green as the next, and a time when
the most annoying pr*ck in the office beats your numbers on a
meaningless interception return in the waning moments of the game. Of
course, for the eternal optimists in every office, it's also a time
when every combination of numbers seems conceivable: "Hey, all I need
is two safeties, 7 field goals, a missed extra point and a flash flood
inside the dome and my 5/5 is lookin' pretty good!" Well, to shed some
undeniable light on the chances of your numbers actually hitting, here
is a statistical analysis of the winning box numbers from the last 10
Super Bowls (EDITORIAL NOTE: as an video editor, I have a lot of "down
time" when the computer renders effects, so please spare me the 'lots
of time on your hands' comments)...


7 - 23.75%
0 - 22.5%
4 - 18.75%
3 - 12.5%
6 - 6.25%
1 - 6.25%
9 - 5%
5 - 2.5%
2 - 1.25%
8 - 1.25%


- In the last 10 years, no other number but 0, 3, 4, or 7 has hit in
the first quarter!

- In the last 10 years, except for a single hit each by the number 6
and the number 9, no other number but 0, 3, 4, or 7 has hit in the
first HALF!

- The number 5 has only hit twice in the last ten years, and both
occurences happened in consecutive quarters. The last time the number
5 hit was in 1997.

- The numbers 2 and 8 have only hit once each in the last 10 years.
They were both numbers in the final score of the game.

- The numbers 1, 4 and 7 have by far the best chances of making it
into the final score -- each has a 20% chance. Number 9 has a 10%
chance, and every other number has a %5 chance, including everyone's
favorite, Number 0 (only one appearance in 20 chances)!

- While they may seem like good numbers individually, some
combinations just don't seem to hit. 0/1 hasn't hit in the last 10
years. In fact, 0 hit with 9 once in the last 10 years, but 0 has
never hit with any number other than 0, 3, 4, or 7. 6/3 has only hit
once (and it was as a final score) and so has 6/6 -- 6 has only ever
hit with a 3, 6, or 7. While 0 is a phenomenal first half number, it's
a pretty bad second half number, with only 3 appearances in the last 10
years and only one appearance in the final score (0/7). You have
almost as good a chance as hitting a 5 in the second half as you do a 0
(2 appearances in the second half compared to 0's 3 appearances), and
an equal chance of hitting a 9 (also 3 appearances).

- The best double numbers (ie, 0/0, 3/3, 4/4) are 0/0 (4 hits) and
7/7 (3 hits). Only 3/3, 6/6, and 4/4 have ever hit, but only once
each. No other double number has hit in the last 10 years.


2005 -
Q1 = 0/0
Q2 = 7/7
Q3 = 4/4
Final = 4/1

2004 -
Q1 = 0/0
Q2 = 0/4
Q3 = 0/4
Final = 2/9

2003 -
Q1 = 3/3
Q2 = 3/0
Q3 = 9/4
Final = 8/1

2002 -
Q1 = 3/0
Q2 = 3/4
Q3 = 3/7
Final = 0/7

2001 -
Q1 = 7/0
Q2 = 0/0
Q3 = 4/7
Final = 4/7

2000 -
Q1 = 3/0
Q2 = 9/0
Q3 = 6/6
Final = 3/6

1999 -
Q1 = 7/3
Q2 = 7/6
Q3 = 7/6
Final = 4/9

1998 -
Q1 = 7/7
Q2 = 4/7
Q3 = 7/4
Final = 4/1

1997 -
Q1 = 4/0
Q2 = 4/7
Q3 = 1/5
Final = 1/5

1996 -
Q1 = 0/0
Q2 = 3/7
Q3 = 0/7
Final = 7/7


Rich In Love

I somewhat believe in Karma…. The concept that if you are a good person, life will eventually reward you as such. With this in mind, I believe that I am a good person, who strives to do “the right thing” as much as possible. This being said, I have never selflessly (meaning without getting some benefit someway – like building your high school resume to get into college) devoted my time to charity.

This post isn’t to announce my personal foray into volunteerism, however, it’s to give props to those that have….

Last night I attended a fundraiser of Rich in Love, which is a new organization devoted to raising money for Cancer research. You should spend 5 minutes reading their story on the site if you can, but the gist is that 2 best friends (Hallie RICH and Allison LOVE) grew up together with their families being super-close – and both fathers have been diagnosed with Cancer (one of them having passed away).

Last night was their first event, and it was extremely heart-warming to see the execution of a great event (with a great turn-out). Amy and I joined a slew of friends and family of Hallie and Allison – who helped raise almost $60,000 for the American Cancer Society. I don’t think that the $60K alone is going to cure cancer, but I do think this millions of acts like this are the right thing to do....I was beyond impressed with the effort and result of the organization. Congrats to all involved!

Side note: Amy and I went on behalf of the entire Goffin family. As my father and Mel Rich are long-time friends, he insisted to on donating to the cause and "sponsoring" Amy and my attendance and raffle tickets…