Welcome WordPress 2.3

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The only plugin that I had installed which supposedly wasn’t compatible with 2.3 was Google Sitemaps Generator. There was a newer version available, which was compatible. So, I just took the plunge and upgraded. Smooth as silk.

This is now the first post that has any tags associated with it. :-)

September 2007 Poker Update

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So, the streak had to end at some point, and it turns out, that September 2007 was that time. No complaints (at least not that I’m willing to voice publicly). ;-)

At one point during the month, I quoted an ancient line to Lois: “If I didn’t have bad luck, I would have no luck at all!”. Seriously, I can’t even count the number of bad river beats I took this month. Like I said previously, that’s actually a good thing. If you get your money in with the best of it, and someone draws out, they are lucky, but playing incorrectly (most of the time).

All that said, it was hardly a horrible month, so my play continues to be relatively successful. Grand total for the month is down $130.69. Nothing earth shaking, and hardly a meaningful percentage of my current account balance. In other words, it isn’t affecting my play in the least, which is a good thing.

In fact, while the “cash” is down, I have a $215 credit toward any future tournament (which I’ll likely use to play in the weekly big one this coming Sunday), so I am actually up this month, though unless I cash in that tournament, I will never see that phantom profit.

Speaking of which, I’ve done well in qualifiers lately. I won an entry to the big one yesterday on Friday. Then on Saturday, I won another entry (which is the $215 credit I mention above). I have also won a bunch of seats into the nightly 7pm Omaha Hi-Lo that I like so much.

Finishing up, I played in the big one last night. I couldn’t get people to play with me when I had big hands, until one did, and he got very lucky on me. I’ll conclude with my notes from the tourney, but you can skip them if you don’t care, since I have nothing else to add after them…

******************************************

910 entrants, top 100 paid

Crazy start. First hand, I’m dealt KK under the gun (UTG). A
“pot” raise, given that the blinds are just 5-10, would only
be 35 chips, with 9 people to act behind me! So, I raise to
a whopping 55. Everyone folds, and I’m ahead 15 chips.

I then fold every hand (10 in a row), and I’m back to even
with 2500 chips. Then, I’m UTG again, and I get AA. Now, I
might be willing to raise less, but I think it might look
smelly, so I raise to 55 again. Again, everyone folds, so
I’m up 15 chips again. Then I fold the two times I’m in the
blinds, so I’m back to even.

866 left, in 386th
857 left, in 278th (finally won a hand with JJ)
795 left, in 335th

Made it to the first break ;-)

688 left, in 353rd (won another hand with JJ)
633 left, in 315th

Again, KK UTG. Raise, everyone folds…

597 left, in 295th

TT UTG. Raise, everyone folds. This one, I’m happy about :-)

QQ in middle position. Raise, everyone folds. Not happy
about that, but I have a feeling that when I’m finally
called on one of these, I will be beat, so I’m not going to
complain. At least the blinds are rising, and I’m winning a
drop more with these hands than in the beginning…

544 left, in 259th

Well, I was 100% correct. I raise with QQ, I get an all-in
to my immediate left. I have more chips than him, so I’m not
at risk. Everyone folds, I call. He has 77, so I’m crushing
him. A 7 comes on the flop, so I’m way behind. However, to
tease me, 2 clubs come on the flop, and I have the Q of
clubs. Then a club comes on the turn, so now a club on the
river, and I would win. No club, and I have only 1400 chips
left.

Next hand, I am the big blind. I have K6 of clubs. One guy
raises. I realize he has a better hand, but I’ve watched
people in this type of position before, and the ones that
bet like idiots, win their fair share, and then I’d be right
back in it. Otherwise, I’d be out, and that would be fine
too.

So, I pushed all-in. He called. He had AJo. I wasn’t
crushed, but was behind. An A came on the flop (what a
surprise), so I am out in 479th.

None of the people that played poorly at my table (but had a lot of chips!) made the money. In other words, I didn’t underestimate their abilities, I just got unlucky…

The Wailin’ Jennys are Wonderful

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Last night, Lois and I went to see The Wailin’ Jennys at Tarrytown Music Hall. We don’t own any of their CD’s, and weren’t familiar with their music. So, what made us go see them?

I’ve written a number of times about how much I love to see David Bromberg perform live. In the past year, we’ve seen him twice, once at BB King’s, with his full band, where they also backed up his wife’s band, Angel Band, and once solo at Joe’s Pub.

During the BB King’s concert, someone sitting next to us told us that Bromberg grew up near Tarrytown, NY, and that he tries to play at Tarrytown Music Hall once a year. We live 3+ miles from there, and didn’t realize that there was a regular live music scene there. It got me started checking their web site, and indeed, they have some top performers coming there, albeit not that regularly.

I noticed that The Wailin’ Jennys (or just “The Jennys” as they refer to themselves) were scheduled for last night, and that the site was promoting them as the most popular show of 2006. I listened to a few short clips on the web, and bought the tickets. It was our first time at the Tarrytown Music Hall.

Previously, I’ve written that the best acoustics that we’ve experienced was at Zankel Hall, which is part of Carnegie Hall. That’s probably still true. That said, Tarrytown Music Hall is a pretty close second, which is pretty incredible, because it’s obviously a very old, Broadway style theater, with the numbers worn off of most of the seats, etc. It doesn’t look like it would carry the music as purely as it does, but indeed, it does!

Opening for the Jennys was an unannounced duo. Actually, the performer was Anthony da Costa, who brought along a friend (Oliver Hill) of his creating a duo/duet on stage. Anthony is 16 years old, yes, that’s right, 16! He’s a folk singer. Excellent voice, pretty darn good folk guitarist as well. Unfortunately, a little too precocious for our tastes on the stage. He has a very good stage presence, and the crowd loved him, so we were in a very tiny minority (possibly of size two!). Anyway, he definitely has talent, so I understand why they booked him, and perhaps he will grow into the role as he graduates from High School. ;-)

Now for the Jennys. You can read their bios, both for the group, as well as the three ladies (who now tour with a guy as well, though he doesn’t sing) here, where they do a better job than I can in summarizing their backgrounds.

They sing together so beautifully, it’s hard to describe. Each has a spectacular voice individually as well. To boot, all three are extremely accomplished musicians (as you can read in their bios as well), trading off multiple instruments during the show (well, Ruth and Nicky do, while Heather plays a mean bass all night long). They are wonderful when they interact with the audience as well, warm, witty, engaging, interesting, etc.

Of course, now we need to go out and buy all of their CDs. The concert ended late, so we were too tired to hang around and buy them there at the theater.

Having mentioned the Angel Band above, and in at least two previous posts, I think I mentioned in one of them that our favorite song by them is “One Voice”. Last night, when the Jennys returned for their encore, they gave an introduction explaining how they (Ruth) came to write “Once Voice”, and then they sang it (to perfection, of course!). We were blown away that a song that we loved so much was written by a group we didn’t know, but had just enjoyed so thoroughly all evening.

We’ve listened to the Angel Band version so many times, so it is stuck in our heads as the correct version. So, while a little bit of the Jennys version was slightly different, ultimately, we both agreed that it was a little richer, and it would only takes us a few more listens before we would likely prefer it dramatically. No knock on the Angel Band, who sing that song amazingly well!

Then, for the finale (second song in the encore), the Jennys sang their third a capella song of the evening (the first two were extraordinary), but this time, without any microphones either. The three of them just stepped out onto center stage, and sang like the angels that they are. Wow!

Anyway, both the Jennys, and Tarrytown Music Hall are highly recommended!

OK, on to the obvious question: “So, three people singing stunning harmonies, are you over Girlyman yet, and if not, are the Jennys as good?” (inquiring minds want to know, and, my contract with this site requires me to mention Girlyman, as readers of my previous Suzy Boggus post will recall). ;-)

For many people, the answer might be yes, but for Lois and I, the answer is no. I’ll speak for myself only (Lois has a slightly different take, but falls in the same direction). The Jennys are amazing, nothing short of it. But, their music (to me) is soothing, almost hypnotic. I was so relaxed (almost mesmerized) during most of their songs. That’s an incredible feeling, and I’ll turn to their CDs (which I will buy this week) when I want/need that feeling.

Girlyman, who are much more minimalistic in their instrumentation, elicit a much more active firing of neurons in my brain. I can’t help but sing along, tap my feet, tap the steering wheel, tap on anything in sight, etc. It’s a more visceral, perhaps even primal connection to the music. Both Lois and I felt that the Jennys could easily achieve that (they most certainly have the talent, in spades), but that’s not the kind of songs they write (or at least not the ones they chose to perform last night).

Take nothing away from them, they are firmly on my favorite groups list now, but Girlyman is still ahead of them on the list. :-)

Suzy Boggus at Joes Pub

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We have very good friends who we get together with in NYC regularly. Both couples have crazy schedules, so we try really hard to make it work whenever we can. We had suggested Thursday, September 20th for a get-together. They responded that the wife couldn’t make it that week, but the husband could. We agreed, since they were away for all of August in France, and we missed them and wanted to hear about the trip.

Then, 10 days ago, they said that if we could move it to Friday the 21st, they could both make it. Done! But, on the same day that we agreed to do that, I got my normal email newsletter from Joe’s Pub, and much to my surprise, one of our favorite artists, Suzy Boggus, was going to be there on the 21st. We immediately bought 4 tickets online.

We ended up reserving the exact same table that we’ve been at every time we’ve been there with 4 people in total, smack flush up against the stage, right in the middle of the stage. I had the same seat, meal, and drinks, that I had when we saw Girlyman there on August 19th.

Starting with the meal, I had the Seared Tuna. A giant portion, served on top of artichoke hearts, done to perfection (every time). Of course, I had to have a chocolate martini as well, also always prepared correctly at Joe’s Pub.

Suzy and her band came on at 7:35pm. She was great. The one thing that surprised both Lois and I is that she writes most of her own songs, but last night chose to play at least 4 (perhaps 5?) covers. They were good songs, and she did them really well, but still, some of our favorites got left on the floor.

Perhaps our favorite is her song Cinderella from the album Something Up My Sleeve. We spotted their play sheet on the stage floor, and Cinderella was on it, second from last song (more accurately, last song before the encore song). Unfortunately, the show likely ran a few minutes longer than timed, or started a few minutes later, and the only song that got cut from the playlist was Cinderella.

Right before the encore, Lois asked Suzy to play Cinderella. She leaned over to Lois and said: “Maybe I can play it for you privately later on…” Oh well…

Anyway, another lovely evening at Joe’s Pub, and another one of our favorites that we can now check off our list as having seen them perform live. :-)

I you want to hear some of Suzy’s songs for free, here is her Myspace page. Ironically, at least 3 of the 4 songs currently available there are covers, not her own. She played two of them (maybe even 3?) last night…

Finally, according to the new Terms of Service instituted roughly a month ago by the management of this site, I am required to include an obligatory link to the Girlyman Myspace page whenever a post mentions anything about music. ;-)

Jonathan Pytell Graces the Piano

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A long while back, there was a crew at CBS TV that were customers of ours at Zope Corporation. That crew broke up, and after having moved to different places, has reassembled again at CBS Radio. CBS Radio is a very small customer of Zope Corporation, but this crew has no part of that.

Lois and I have remained friendly with our former customers, in particular with the boss of the crew. We knew the second guy in the chain second best. The third guy is someone I had only met once or twice until recently.

A few months back, we invited the crew to dinner at our favorite NYC Mexican restaurant, El Rio Grande. That’s the first time we got to know Jonathan Pytell (the third guy). At dinner, we discovered that he was a musician. He plays regularly (every Wednesday from 6:30-9pm and every Saturday from 7-10pm) at F.illi Ponte.

We’ve been wanting to go see him every since that dinner, but our schedule is just so crazy that it didn’t work out. Last night we finally got to go. F.illi Ponte is a very high-end restaurant (prices and likely food quality), and we weren’t in the mood for a big (rich) meal, since both of us had separate business lunches out yesterday. So, we ate at home first, and intended to have a drink in the bar, which is where Jonathan plays anyway.

The restaurant is gorgeous. The dining room has beautiful views of the Hudson River. The staff at the restaurant is one of the nicest that we’ve seen (at least 8 different people that we noticed). The bar doesn’t have a view of the river, but in addition to the traditional bar (with stools), there are a number of plush couches and leather chairs. We chose a sofa behind Jonathan, 2 feet away from him.

The bartender (a very sweet and cute, likely Russian woman named Natalia) made me a perfect chocolate martini. Yummy. As bad as I look in the photo below (I know, it’s accurate), I included it so that you could see Jonathan, and more importantly, the chocolate martini, which stars in the photo. Click on the photo to see a larger image of the martini. ;-)

Jonathan Pytell and Hadar

Jonathan played a wonderful set of classic songs, including taking at least 10 requests from Lois and me. Thanks for that Jonathan. He’s a wonderful musician with a real feel for the music. He brings a very nice creativity to a number of the classics.

In between, as the bar cycled through people waiting for dinner, we got to talk a lot with Jonathan and get to know him better. He’s as nice and interesting a person as you could want to know.

If you find yourself in lower Manhattan on a Wednesday or Saturday evening, I highly recommend stopping in for a drink and catching Jonathan tickle the ivories. Feel free to ask him to play one of your favorites, and tell him I sent you. :-)

While I can’t recommend the food at the restaurant, simply because I haven’t tasted it yet, the ambiance is amazing there, so it’s definitely worth trying out at least once, if you have lots of cash or credit handy…

I’m sure we’ll be doing this again in the near future, in particular, when I have a hankering for another perfect chocolate martini. ;-)

Bad Result in Sunday Tourney

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I shouldn’t even bother posting. The only good news is that it didn’t drag on that long, and torture me with a “near the money” finish, like last time… Here are my notes:

871 entrants, top 90 get paid

820 left, in 232nd
815 left, in 135th
774 left, in 143rd
683 left, in 243rd
579 left, in 385th

Lost two hands with JJ, which in one, I flopped a set. So
far, not really going my way… I folded both to very large
bets, the second one with both a flush and straight
possibilities on the board. So, I’m still alive, but far
from healthy. I will need to take some chances to survive…

542 left, in 455th

Finished in 476th. Lost a “race”. I had 55, was called by
someone with AJo, A came on flop, game over…

FiOS TV Leads to HDTV

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As much of a technophile as I am, including being a gadget freak, I am also a reasonably late adopter for many technology breakthroughs. This included being very late to the Compact Disc party, among others.

HDTV was no exception. I have friends who have had HDTV for a few years now, so I know how awesome the picture is compared to regular TV, but still, I wasn’t motivated to get one.

Usually, it’s pure laziness that causes me to adopt late. In fact, many of my most favorite gadgets were gifts. In that regard, I’m easy to get gifts for (albeit very expensive ones!), because I usually don’t rush out to buy the latest thing. I am thankful that my first Blackberry, first Treo, first GPS, etc., were all gifts, or I might never have gotten them, and I love(d) them all. :-)

In the case of HDTV, it was more of a logistic/tactical reason, rather than pure laziness. In our family room (downstairs), we have a 60″ rear projection Mitsubishi TV that we bought when we first moved in to the house, over 18 years ago. After weeks of nightmarish repair calls 11 months after we bought it (one of the few devices that I ever bought an extended warranty for!), they finally agreed (reluctantly) to replace the motherboard with the newer model (Diamond Vision II). Since then (17+ years), the TV has been flawless. The picture is hardly state-of-the-art (not even close), but it’s big, clear (enough), and has tons of stuff sitting on top of the massive cabinet that it is housed in (in other words, it’s a useful piece of furniture as well as being a functional TV).

It’s (obviously) not HD capable. When we first bought it, we had sliding glass doors to the backyard patio right next to where the TV currently is. Getting this monster in the house wasn’t all that painful. A few years later, we sealed off those doors and they are now just a giant (un-openable) window. The thought of ever replacing that TV is daunting. I have no idea how we’ll get it out, other than completely breaking it up. That would be a shame, as it would make for a fine TV to donate, to the local VFW for example.

In addition to that, I have DirecTV (non-HD version!), and had Cablevision without a cable box, and therefore without HD service either. I could get a new HD capable dish for DirecTV, but then my current DirecTiVo (with 250GB disk in it) would become useless. Painful upgrades, including installing the new dish outside, but still, I’d have to deal with the TV itself. In other words, status quo was the perfect solution. ;-)

Upstairs in the bedroom, where we actually watch TV 99% of the time anyway (the downstairs mostly gets watched on Football weekends, by me alone), we had a 27″ regular TV. This TV also showed a nice picture, but it’s as pedestrian a TV as you can find. Only two inputs, coax and red-white-yellow audio/video input (which is called Game mode, for Nintendo-like consoles). The size of the TV was determined by the available shelf space in our wall-to-wall built-in. Given how deep the TV was, and the size of the only opening made for a TV, this was as big as it could get.

Enter FiOS TV a few weeks back. Previous to this, all of our equipment was downstairs. There was a single coax connecting the downstairs to the upstairs TV. Using a remote control extender, I could turn on various devices downstairs, and watch the DirecTV upstairs, etc. If all downstairs devices were off, then the basic cable was automatically passed to the upstairs TV.

With FiOS TV, we had our first cable box in the bedroom, including our first DVR in the bedroom. Of course, it is also an HD box (both DVR and live). After thinking about it for a whopping two weeks, I decided to break down. Yesterday, Lois and I went over to Sam’s Club to buy an HDTV. I don’t know all that much about them, so I spent about 30 minutes doing very light research (difference between Plasma and LCD, etc.).

Given that these sets are flat panels, I knew that I could go bigger than the current 27″, since the TV could be wider than the opening that the current one is in. I figured that I could go as high as 46″, but 42″ was likely optimal. Sam’s carries lots of HDTV’s, in all sizes and capabilities. After browsing for a long time, I narrowed it to a JVC 42″, a Sharp Aquos 42″, and a Magnavox 37″ (that I knew would be much more pleasing to Lois, aesthetically). All were full HDTV, 1080p, 1920×1080 resolution. I was leaning toward the Sharp. The JVC only had a 1200:1 contrast ratio (I have no idea whether that’s good or bad, but some other sets there were 15000:1, yes 15 thousand), so the JVC sounded puny next to that. I think the Sharp was 6000:1.

Well, it turned out that on the shelves under the demo TV’s, there was no Sharp, but there was one JVC, and one Magnavox (the 37″). I grabbed the JVC and ran. :-)

Amazingly, the TV comes with zero cables, other than the power cord. Clearly, they assume that whatever source you are connecting to the TV, had to come with cables, or you prefer (yeah right) to buy your own. This, on a TV that can accept 5 simultaneous inputs of varying types! (actually more, but who’s counting)

Having not had any experience with HDTV, or even component cabling, and having hooked it all up before bothering to read either the JVC manual (which I eventually read cover-to-cover) or the STB (Set-Top-Box) manual, the only way I was able to get a picture was to use the lower-end red-white-yellow audio/video connection. That doesn’t carry full HD on it. So, while the TV looked very good (very good indeed!), it still wasn’t awesome. So, I got online and ordered an HDMI cable, which will arrive in a week.

After reading both manuals, I realized what I had done wrong, and I was able to use the component video plus separate audio cables, and I now have full HD working on the TV. Wow, cool! The HDMI cable should be simpler from a cabling point of view, but I doubt the picture will be materially better (if better at all).

Of course I was right about the aesthetics, as Lois wished (after the fact) that we had gone for the 37″ model. I (of course) am delighted that we went with the 42″ one. ;-)

Lois also wished that it came in either white or grey, rather than the stark black (our built-in is cream colored), but there really was no choice at all, especially given that there was exactly one 42″ 1080p in stock. That said, none of the other demo models were really anything other than black or charcoal gray either…

At the moment, we can’t (without a lot of pain) watch the DirecTV upstairs. While I have a pair of video extenders somewhere in the house, an exhaustive search didn’t locate them (it’s been over 10 years since they were used). I ordered a new pair from X10 on Friday, and they too should get here by the end of the week, when the HDMI cable shows up. That should easily let me switch between FiOS and DirecTV. I still won’t have HD from the DirecTV dish, but it should still look awesome on the new JVC.

While it’s still likely off in the distance, we can both already feel more HDTV’s in our future. At some point, I’ll break down and replace the ancient TV downstairs, especially now that the FiOS stuff will immediately work on it. We had also already discussed getting one for the apartment living room. We never watch TV there alone, but it’s a gathering place when we have company in the city, which is reasonably often, so we might break down and do that in the near future. We’ll let this one sink in first though… ;-)

Silly DKIM Update

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This is an unnecessary post. I’m mostly doing it because I said I would, but really, because I changed the permalink structure of this blog, and this will be my first post with the new structure (though old posts are available under the new scheme as well). :-)

It’s been a little more than three months since I started signing all outgoing mail with DKIM. The only smtp servers other than mine that seem to always sign with DKIM are gmail servers. Many Yahoo! users don’t send through their smtp servers.

Like I said, nothing real to report, just that after 3 months, gmail users are the only ones who I reliably see DKIM signatures for.

On a Girlyman Mission

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There, I said it, I’m not embarrassed to be a Girlyman Groupie. :-)

I’ve previously written about my accidental discovery of this wonderful group. If you didn’t read it, you don’t need to bother, as I’ll summarize much of what I said there here, and provide the more important of the links here as well.

First and foremost, I’m about to rave about this group. I realize how subjective music appreciation can be, so before you continue reading here (assuming you’ve never heard of them and aren’t sure whether your tastes are like mine), I strongly suggest that you take a break and listen to the full length, free, streaming songs that they have on their Myspace page. There are typically 5 songs available there. At the moment, Joyful Sign (the title cut of their latest CD) starts streaming immediately. If you listen to exactly 40 seconds of the song, and don’t love it, you can safely skip the rest of this post.

Many reviewers have written eloquently about Girlyman, comparing them to a modern-day, three voice Simon and Garfunkel, or perhaps more aptly Peter, Paul and Mary. Those are fine comparisons, and I wouldn’t disagree, and I certainly loved (and still do!) both of those groups from my early days of listening to music. That said, Girlyman is more than that. Aside from their wonderful lyrics (many deeply soulful songs), and their stunning harmonies (which they utilize more effectively than the above two groups, IMHO), they also play many different styles of music.

I guess that from reading most of the reviews, one would tend to try and classify them as a Folk group. They certainly play a lot of Folk music, so it’s not a misnomer. That said, they also play some damn good Pop as well, except that by design, their instrumentation is lean (and clean), so they don’t necessarily produce the typical bigger sounds expected in a Pop group. They have a number of songs that are classically Bluegrass. A few songs that are wonderful Country as well.

They produce the different styles in part by switching instruments (e.g., bring the Banjo and/or Mandolin in for a Bluegrass sound), but actually more by controlling the nature, volume and type of harmonies that they sing in order to shift to another style. In other words, rather than having a much bigger band sound (like Rascal Flatts for example, one of our favorites, and another group that harmonizes amazingly), they choose to use their harmonies as pure instruments, creating the same feelings, but not the same big band sound.

I certainly hope that they will make it big, they richly deserve it, and the world could stand to discover them. That said, I know how tough it is (statistically) for any group to make it (now more than ever, with the accelerating death of the traditional Music Company business), and in particular with this more quiet, contemplative style of music. So, I feel like I’m on a personal mission to ensure that as many people are exposed to Girlyman, so that they can make their own decision.

I previously reported that we purchased two of their CD’s at their concert at Joe’s Pub in NYC. They were Joyful Sign (their latest) and Remember Who I Am (their first). As mentioned, our godson got the band to sign Joyful Sign to us, and we’ll treasure that forever. :-)

In order to spread the word, and support the band in the most direct way possible, we just bought 11 more CDs from the site linked above (in both album titles). We bought 5 copies of Joyful Sign, 2 copies of Little Star (the one CD we didn’t have yet), 2 copies of Remember Who I Am, 1 copy of Shadow of a Habit (the album by the two women in Girlyman, before Girlyman was formed, when they were called The Garden Verge) and one copy of Never Enough Time (a solo album by Nate Borofsky, before he, Ty and Doris formed Girlyman). We’re giving out copies of Joyful Sign to some of our friends this weekend, and we’re excited to directly share their music in this way.

I have a lot more listening to do (and I’ve done a lot already), but here’s my current take on ranking the CDs (this is on the assumption that you end up being interested, but aren’t crazy like us, so you don’t go out and buy them all). ;-)

Joyful Sign, simply fantastic. A number of styles, all done extremely well, with soaring harmonies and melodies that will grab you by the throat. Warning: some of the songs stick in my head in ways that I can’t get out, even if I want to, so if you listen to the CD a few times, be prepared to find yourself uncontrollably humming, whistling, etc., some of the tunes. You’ve been warned!

Remember Who I Am. A close second.

Shadow of a Habit. This is the one with just the women, who were known as The Garden Verge then. This is a somewhat more mellow sound, but their harmonies are nearly as amazing, even though there are only two of them.

Little Star. This is by no means a weak album, but it doesn’t have the overall oomph that Joyful Sign or Remember Who I Am have.

Never Enough Time. A very nice album as well. There is some beautiful harmony on it as well, but it’s more of a solo effort. I don’t know (because I didn’t research it), whether it’s Ty (or Doris) singing with him, but I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if it is.

Here’s what I find interesting about the above. If I fell in love with Remember Who I Am when it first came out, I might have been disappointed in Little Star (no, it’s not a bad CD, just not as strong). This might have led me to believe that they were running out of creativity, etc. Thankfully, I heard Joyful Sign first, their third CD, and it is amazing. So, whatever caused a slight dip in between the strong beginning and the current acceleration of their talent, I can still appreciate as a strong album on its own, even if not up to the new standard they set with Joyful Sign.

Aside from bringing an excellent voice to the group (both as soloist and harmonizer), Nate brings a little more up-beat-ness to the musical variety of Girlyman. Some of the more interesting sounds are noticeable on his solo album, which has a little more tempo to it than some of the Garden Verge stuff.

The blend of their respective music, voices, writing talent, etc., is absolutely wonderful.

So, even though we just saw them recently, we found out (through their mailing list) that they are coming back to NYC to the Highline Ballroom on November 4th. We were scheduled to leave for Virginia that day, but changed our plans now to be there. We bought a couple of extra tickets and we’re taking some friends to the show to spread the fever. ;-)

I noticed that they were playing next week in Minneapolis, and immediately wrote to two of my friends there suggesting that they take in the show. Hopefully, they will, and will report back enthusiastically.

For the rest of you, Girlyman seems to be touring all over the place this fall, and I strongly recommend that you check their schedule and see if you can catch them in person.

Hope to see you all at a show in the near future, and if you can’t make it, buy a ton of their CDs. :-)

Bad result in Sunday Big Tourney on 9/2/2007

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No narrative necessary. Here is the log from my notes from today’s tourney, the first one in over a month that I got to play in…

846 entrants, top 90 paid

800 left in 11th
723 left in 35th
677 left in 56th
631 left in 26th
523 left in 13th
399 left in 283rd (I played one hand really badly!!!)
326 left in 269th
255 left in 114th (I got wildly lucky, thankfully!)
216 left in 110th
163 left in 138th (folded one hand I should have played!)
142 left in 133rd (folded another winner…)
134 left in 107th (won an all-in)
128 left in 117th

38 to go to the money, it’s going to be really tight!

118 left in 100th
103 left in 99th

13 left to the money, not looking great…

Had a tough choice, and I asked Lois what do. There were 97
people left (7 to go), and I was extremely low on chips.
Someone went all-in. I had JJ. I knew that I was likely a
slight favorite, but if I lost, I was out of the money. If I
won, I would definitely be able to make the money.

Lois said “Go for it”. I did. He had AQ. An A came on the
flop, and I was out in 96th. Oh well. So close, and yet, so
far!

I misplayed one hand very badly, and then got a little
tentative in two hands that would have won as well. In other
words, I truly didn’t deserve to make the money, even though
I came really close…

Independently, I came third in an Omaha Hi-Lo last night, and third again in the same tourney today, so I’m up for the month (since I won the entry into the big one in August, so there was zero cost to play it in September).

So, in truth, I can’t really complain. :-)