Oh Heavenly Day

For Addison, it doesn’t get much better. There were firetrucks at the Dunkin’ Donuts/Baskin Robbins. Honestly, for me it doesn’t get much better than the fact that there exists such a place as a Dunkin’ Donuts slash Baskin Robbins. But you open up a firetruck, turn on the flashers, and let Addison roam around in it while wearing his own fireman garb . . . that’s top notch. But get out your notcher and engrave another one on top of THAT, because he still got to have a chocolate Dunkin’ Donut with sprinkles AND a scoop of chocolate ice cream, scooped by a real live firefighter.


April 30, 2008 question

In Britain, Milky Way bars were called Mars bars. Only Diannalee and Karen H (the H stands for Have Three, We’re In London!) knew that. But that was yesterday, this is today. At least for now.

It’s the last day of April, and you know what that means . . . no more April. AND time for shower trivia. Or flower trivia. I don’t know, here’s the question:

What Peanuts character was seen almost exclusively wearing a ponytail? (Super Bonus Points if you know her last name, too)

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1. Jason Castro – Forever in Blue Jeans. Yeah, I liked it. I like him because he’s not trying to be anything more than, well, anything more than forever in blue jeans.

2. David Cook – I’m Alive. Yeah y’are. And a little smug. But still, not the worst performance ever.

3. Brooke Why’d – I’m a Believer. As in “Why’d you think you could sing that song, Flo?” Because she’s corny and she knows it. Corny, cheesy . . . corn dog with cheese.

4. David Archuleta – Sweet Caroline. Um . . . I loved the fact that he performed this as if it were the theme song to his sitcom. I don’t know . . . He mixed it up a bit. I don’t know. He’s missing something . . . just no strength in his voice half the time, like he’s got a loogie waiting to fly.

5. Syesha Mercado – Hello Again. And . . . goodbye. She’s not a bad singer, but I feel like I’m stuck in a disco.

Intermission – Paula, seriously, that was awesome. You’re going to make a wonderful drunk grandmother someday. And Neil, you’re the bomb.

6. JC – September Morn. Here’s what I like about this guy: I don’t think you should have to look like you’re trying super hard. He doesn’t. I mean, he’s not exactly trying to win this contest, but he’s not offending the crap out of me.

7. DC – All I Really Need Is You. I never got the chance to slow dance in the ’80s. I almost just did. I’m sorry, I couldn’t disagree with the judges more on this one. I think Cook is good, but I thought that song was total cornball. I didn’t think it sounded anything like anything that would come out today. Sometimes when you change the style of a song it works great. But the language in that song is not that rockin’. You can’t utter the words “I must conclude” whilst rocking. It just doesn’t fit.

8. B Dub – I Am . . . I Said. That was good. For me, dog, that was probably the best song of the night.

9. DA – America. Okay, I didn’t correctly predict any song choices, pretty bad considering they sang TWO songs each. It’s almost like I’m 0 for 10. But this is the closest I came to getting one right. “America” is the other Neil “something bigger, fellow mankind” song. Simon’s right, he was clever in going all patriotic. But, all technical merit aside, that was an artistic mess. The terrorists just won.

10. SM – Thank the Lord for the Nighttime. I thank the Lord we’re almost done. I like Syesha alright, but just alright. She did a good job, but her voice is never really going to blow people away. Thinking back to some of the voices that have lost on season’s past, Syesha doesn’t rank among the great ones.

All in all, this show did what it was supposed to do – it revealed the contestants for the not-quite-ready-to-sell-records bunch that they are. I was entertained. I love the songs. It’s one of the rare weeks when I think I’ll actually like the results show better than the performance show. Okay, no more Neil. Thanks, buddy, this was fun.

April 29, 2008 question

Well, we’ve got a little bit of housework to do here in trivia village. First of all, I need to give credit to the people who got Friday’s New York question correct:

Heather M (the M stands for Manhattan)

I’ll also give double credit to Heidi for being the sole winner of yesterday’s nougat-filled trivia. She knew that the Milky Way bar took the first big bite out of the U.S. economy. Ironically, Heidi is also one of those who believes that New York and the Milky Way are approximately the same size. Ah . . . I can hear the Bronx cheer resounding my way right now . . .

Anyway, here’s today’s continuation of chocolaty triviality:

What was the U.K. version of the Milky Way bar called when they shipped it across the pond?

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I Have My Suspicions

The songs the Idol contestants will sing? I’ve had a hard time coming up with anything resembling a logical guess for any of the contestants for any of the previous weeks. But this week (did I mention it’s Neil Diamond week?) I have some strong hunches about what people will sing. Time will tell how reliable my gut is, but for now here’s what I feel coming (in order of strongest feeling to wildest guess):

1. David Archuleta – He’s not heavy, he’s my brother. This just seems tailor-made for Archie, who is destined, when Simon questions his song choice, to reply, “It’s just such a great song with a really positive message. I just think it’s a song the world really needs to hear right now, you know? Take care of each other and lift each other up. It’s always been one of my favorite songs.”

2. David Cook – I’m a Believer. He’ll do this in kind of a dark, minor arrangement that will burst into a brighter, less brooding speed rocker.

3. Jason Castro – Red, Red Wine. Randy will say it’s not the greatest vocal of the night, but he loved how he made it his own, dog, so that was pretty good. Paula will melt a little and try to say she’s crushing on him without actually saying it. Simon will say he played it safe, but at least we know what to expect from him and there’s no question he’s genuine. Still, he’s got to wonder if America is going to get bored with the same performance week in and week out.

4. Brooke White – Play Me. I really don’t know what she’ll sing. I just know it will be overly thoughtful and underly dynamic.

5. Syesha Mercado – You Don’t Bring Me Flowers. It won’t make sense as a solo effort instead of a duet, but she’ll do it anyway. The judges will like the vocal (and Paul will say she looks great) but they will all be confused as to why she’s singing two halves of a song to herself.

In past seasons, the contestants didn’t start singing two songs until the final four, which should make this the longest, most drawn out performance episode of the season. I can’t wait. There’s gonna be a whole lotta Neil, baby, yeah!

April 28, 2008 question

New York was the first state to require automobile license plates, probably because they had so many criminals with nothing better to do. In the wake of the news that Mars is about to purchase Wrigley, here’s today’s confectionery question:

What was the first candy bar to become a major financial success for the Mars candy company?

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Dylan vs. Diamond

Wallflowers, “Sleepwalker”
Neil Diamond, “Solitary Man”

With all the Neil Diamond – Bob Dylan comparisons I’ve been making, I can’t believe it took me this long to post this musical ripoff, which is not my original observation, but an old carpool mate. Enjoy.

Musical Ripoffs . . . Diamond and Dylan

With all the Neil Diamond – Bob Dylan comparisons I’ve been making, I can’t believe it took me this long to post this musical ripoff, which is not my original observation, but an old carpool mate. You can listen in the playlist: “Sleepwalker,” by the Wallflowers (feat. Jakob Dylan) and “Solitary Man,” by Neil Diamond. Enjoy.


A florist I am not. I think this is a tulip. As little as I know about flowers, I still like to see them rear their ugly heads . . . mostly because they’re not ugly. Anyway, this is the first flower to spring up in our bed this spring. I feel just the smallest rush of excitement at flower #1.

I know. I’m a dork.

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Overheard . . . Dear Santa

Today, Addison spontaneously launched into a letter to Santa. It was hilarious because he was just scribbling in lines as he dictated to himself. He started it out with a quote from “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” which you can find about 15 seconds from the end of the clip below.

This was the gist: “Dear Santa, how have you been? Please bring my daddy a new bicycle. And bring my mommy some new socks. Bring Colin some pajamas. And please bring me some firetruck clothes.” Then he redid the thing on a real piece of paper (although still not with real words) and wanted to mail it to Santa. I think it’s on its way to the North Pole right now. Fun. 🙂