DJ Cannonball

28 04 2012

Oy my. This was hard. I tried it from so many directions. So many angles. How to write it. But this is it. A great friend of mine is leaving Pittsburgh. And I’m seriously crying over it. I can’t imagine my life without him.

JB has been an amazing friend and supporter and, duh, DJ, for me… How can we live without him?

He was one of my regulars back in the day when I worked on Sundays. And a fave to play 7s with at practice…

Tonight is JB’s going away party at My Living Room, and I’m not going to be there, since I worked all day and am still trying to recover from the sick-fest I experienced this past week… And I work tomorrow, too. Ugh.

But I have to say good bye, in my own way… So here we go…

I don’t remember the actual day I met JB… It was so many years ago. But we were immediate friends, I know that. How can you NOT love him?

Good grief. Pittsburgh is losing a great human being. I will miss you so much, JB.

Anyway, JB, I want you to know these things:

You can ALWAYS make me smile. Not many people can do that. That’s truth.

Thank you for being such a great friend.

Thank you for apologizing to me the one and ONLY time you ever had to. I appreciated that, very much so.

Thank you for somehow making people back in the day to apologize to me when they needed to. I still have no idea how you did that, but I appreciate it to this day.

Thank you for visiting me on Sundays back in the day at My Living Room. There were days you were the only customer.

Thank you for the “Nice Hustle” x one million. Pretty sure that’s an accurate count. Right?

Thank you for the “What’s wrong, Clairebear?”

Thank you for my wrestling belt and DJ’ing my “Last night at My Living Room.” I cherish that belt, btw.

Thank you for your cheesy (aka gorgeous) smile that I got to see not only on TV, but in person, many times. Thank you for not hating me when I teased you about the “cheesy smile.” And for knowing it was honestly a compliment. I will miss said smile. So. Much.

Thank you for calling me Clairbear when you see me. (apparently I like when you call me that. You’re the only person allowed to. Just saying.)

Thank you for being such a strong person and having faith. It makes those of us who know you stronger. Truly.

Thank you for being you, JB. You are an amazing person. I am blessed to have known you for these ten or so years.

You’ve made me a better person, Jon. I love you for that. I will miss you so much.

You should probably thank me now no pictures in  this post… I WISH I had a scanner!

Nashville is lucky to have you. I hope they realize that, quickly. You are good at what you do.

I may call you. If I do, you know I need to hear “Clairbear, what’s wrong?” there’s your warning.

Good luck, sir. I love you so much.

New nephew!

2 08 2011

My phone rang at 11:10 this morning. I, of course, was still sleeping. But I heard it ring and looked. Since it was Lili calling, I answered immediately. I figured Little C wanted to talk to me about swimming.

Side note: I’m supposed to go to Florida on August 6th. Little C is beyond excited to go swimming with Aunt Claire… She has been talking about it since July. To the point that she asked Lili if I would wear my swimsuit UNDER my clothes on my flight, so that we could go swimming immediately upon my arrival… (she’s TWO, you guys.)

But it wasn’t Lili, or Little C. It was NE, calling to tell me Lili was in labor, and my parents were on their way. My first question? “Where is Little C?”

She was safe and sound at Lili’s good friend’s house in Florida. I wished them luck and hung up.

I wanted to sleep more, but I had stuff to do for school, so off I went.

At 2:12pm, as I’m in the CCAC Boyce Dean’s office, dropping off paperwork. And I hear/feel my phone. As I walk out, I answer.

It’s Lili. She says she just wants to tell me I have a new NEPHEW! His name, here, at least, is G-Man. She called around 45 min after he was born. (My sister is amazing.) And then she had to hang up quick to snuggle him.

OMG. A boy! I was hoping for HEALTHY baby, but HOORAY FOR A NEW BABY BOY!

I cried. Of course, I cried.

I called my mom approximately ellebenty billion times today over the baby… Once to tell her that her *other* daughter made me cry in public. lol.

When I called my mom before work. NE had come home and told Little C she was a Big Sister to a Baby Brother, and she was SO excited. She’s going to meet him tomorrow. She is going to be a great big sister.

During our convo, my mom mentioned that there was a Tropical Storm coming for Florida… Saturday. Maybe. Turns out, I checked the weather and it’s scheduled (for now) to hit Florida, their area, right around when I’d arrive on the 6th. So tomorrow? I’m going to try to change my flight to Friday, the 5th. I’m spending my birthday with Little C (and my parents, Lili, NE, and G-man) come heck or high water. I don’t care.

I might have to fly through Philly though… The last time I did that, it was November or December and I spent 6 HOURS THERE. Please hope this works out better.

Thanks to my friends who are offering themselves or husbands to drive me to the airport. I love you guys.

Also, I cannot wait to meet G-man and make him a baby burrito. I loves me baby burritos. Can’t wait to see how similar or different he is from his sister… although, I didn’t meet C till she was a month old…

Baby Burrito Time!

Kiwanis Pool

7 06 2011

It’s that time again. Summer. Pool time. And we’re starting Pool Tour 2011 already. I don’t know that I’ll make a lot of new places this year due to working day shifts and still trying to save money for school and bills. But we’ll see what happens.

I wanted to get out of the house last weekend, so on Saturday, I met Burghseyewife and Shellrenee at Avonworth Pool. We’ve been there before, and we like it. They haven’t changed anything, but the water was freezing! I think I’d up the grade I gave them last year to a B.

On Sunday, I wasn’t sure where to go since most of my pool friends were busy. I checked Facebook and saw that Denise was looking for something to do. We agreed to meet at a pool I haven’t been to before. Here’s my review.

Crawford Pool – Kiwanis Park – Shaler

Cost: $8 for adults; $6 for ages 0-17 and over 62. Prices are reduced by $1 after 6:30pm.

Hours: Monday – Saturday noon – 8:30pm; Sunday noon – 7:30pm

This pool is pretty big. There is a separate section for diving and laps, and they have a pretty decent slide. The slide closed around 5pm on Sunday for some reason.

The prices I listed above are for non-residents. I think charging $6 for a 2 year old is a bit much, but if you’re a resident, it’s free for kids under 5. And a few bucks cheaper for the other age ranges. But I doubt many of my pool friends will want to meet up there, considering most of them have at least one kid, if not two or four. It’s way to pricey.

Speaking of kids, they do have a separate kids pool area. I totally forgot to go take a look.

At the top of every hour, a whistle blows and the kids have to leave the pool for adult swim. That was nice because there were a lot of kids there on Sunday.

They have a separated concession area also. You aren’t supposed to remove any food from that area, but we did see people doing it. The menu is quite extensive as compared to other pools I’ve been to, and the prices are relatively low. You can also bring in coolers, but you’re supposed to take whatever food you have into the concession area to eat.

The strangest thing I saw about this pool is that as you enter, and on their website it states, “Swimmers must wear commercially manufactured swimming suits.” Which makes me wonder what the heck someone tried to swim in in the past to warrant such a statement.

I’d probably go back if I had something to do in the North Hills, that was nearby, but not on a random day as the admission and distance are a little much to get over.

Overall Grade: C (mostly due to the admission price being the highest I’ve encountered thus far.)


6 04 2011

I hate myself right now. For being impatient. HATE!

I had issues with the netbook the other night… I talked to my go-to IT guy, Chachisays. He could help me Wednesday. But I had a meeting.

Or I could wait until Friday…

Cue my impatience. I wasn’t waiting. Via text, I ran some things past him and we agreed it’d be okay… I’d run a back up of my C drive, saved to my D drive, then run a complete restore. What would I lose? Some pictures of Little C. Heh. I have most still on my camera. And get the ones I probably lost from The Nana or Lili. All good.

After the backup to D drive said it was done, I ran a restore, full restore, on C drive…

When the netbook booted back up and was all new and shiny again, it seemed the back up to D seems to have not worked. IDK. I can’t find it.

What did I lose? That I can remember?

Videos of Little C. Especially the ones I didn’t post to You Tube.

My resume. And all incarnations of its recent form.

All my CCAC and going back to school info.

All my tax info from last year that I need for this year’s return.

Probably some rugby stuff someone will need eventually… thankfully most of that will be in my email.

All my interwebz bookmarks and such.

All of my passwords.

All of my screen settings etc.

iTunes. The whole damn library.

Oh hell. This is bad.

And who knows what else… I can’t remember…

I want to cry. Really I do.

But then I realize it’s all my fault. For being impatient. But we thought it would work & be fine!

I’m hoping Chachi might be able to find the back up. I don’t know where to look or what to do…

If he can’t, well, I’ll recreate passwords, bookmarks and screen settings. I’ll cry over the lost Little C videos. And some day, when I have $ to throw around, I’ll re-buy what is already on my iTunes (some which I just purchased and didn’t upload to my iPod. Sigh)

I’ve now lost all faith in my ability to fix anything computer like because of this. That’s very sad.

Here’s hoping Chachi, with his flying cape will help me find bits and pieces, if not all of it. (I have full faith in Chachi, but not in my backup.) Chachi is a super hero, if you didn’t know before.

No Cornbread…

6 03 2011

This evening, I went to see the Carolina Chocolate Drops for the second time, along with two lady friends I met through Twitter. UncleCrappy and MrsCrappy couldn’t make this one.

We met for dinner at Buffalo Blues, and then went for a drink at Kelly’s (my FIRST time there! and I had an AWFUL Mint Julep) before the show at the Kelly Strayhorn Theater in East Liberty.

We walked in to find an first-come, first-seated arrangement. And I spotted three seats together, on the aisle, about four rows back from the stage. We grabbed them. (Grand seats, considering UncleCrappy and I watched from the absolute back of the venue last time and could hardly see the stage!)

The show was part of an event the Strayhorn puts on called the Sunstar Music Festival. A four-day event that showcases woman music-makers, thus why the ticket was $25. The musicians and performers before the Drops were also awesome.

Back to THE show…

I noticed four chairs set up. Last time there were three. Hmmm… And when the Drops walked out, I noticed not one new person, but two. Turns out Justin started grad school and left the band. (Good for you Justin!) Now they have a new guy named Hubby, who also plays a mandolin! And then I saw a random white dude in the 4th chair… His name, I believe, is Adam. Who, after holding a tambourine,  seemed to be playing an imaginary stand up bass. I was so confused.

But, Holy Cow. If I wasn’t working Sunday night, I’d so be going to see Adam’s solo show at Garfield Art Works. But I am working. So anyway, his ability to beat-box, and to mimic (is that the right word? I have no clue!) a slide trombone and trumpet are amazing. I was seriously impressed. He even mimicked the sound of brushes on a drum and cymbals during one song. No, really.  I hope they keep him around. I have no idea what he does in his solo show, as my attempt to load the Garfield Art Works website failed… And I don’t know his last name.

Dom was crazy and dancing through part of the show, even tossing around his guitar at one point. He’s a showman, that one. I love it.

The show was awesome, as I expected. They played some things I haven’t heard before, and couldn’t find on You Tube. Sad. But, they played some faves, including some of mine, like Snowden’s Jig and Hit ‘Em Up Style… But they didn’t play some things I adored last time and that are on regular rotation on my iTunes. Namely, Cornbread and Butterbeans. That song is one I tell newbies to check out! I wasn’t surprised, when I saw Hubby, that they didn’t play it… That was Justin’s song, so when Rhiannon explained why they weren’t playing it, I totally understood. They also didn’t play Salty Dog, which I also like.

I watched Dom play the harmonica for an entire song (including with his nose! I know!) and he flipped it back and forth on his mouth, and never missed a beat. ZOMG.

But overall? It was totally worth the $25 and I’ll definitely see them next time they are in town. Absolutely.

I hope that my ladies that were with me tonight will be there, same with UncleCrappy and MrsCrappy… Oh, And you TOO AndreaDisaster! We missed you all!


22 02 2011

So updates on posts and random stuff.

My burn is better. The blister left, and left me with a beautiful leathery skin thing that quickly peeled itself off.  Part of my finger is now bright pink. Yay. I can’t wait to see the scar I end up with.

My soul is still happy from Chachiplays, and from my friends at work. I’m so lucky.

I got an email today about spring softball. I replied with “SIGN ME UP!” I can’t wait for softball. I just hope it isn’t Saturday mornings…

I talked to The Nana today. Good gravy, she is sick. So is The GrandPa (aka Papa). They have meds. I hope they get better soon, because they are supposed to watch Little C this coming weekend! (which reminds me again that I wish I lived near my sister.)

I discovered Pandora recently. I love my Mason Jennings station and everything that plays on that station. WOW. I’ll branch out a more soon. But for now, it makes me mellow and happy.

It snowed today. I saw 1-3″ predicted on Twitter earlier. Pretty sure we have more than 6″. I really wanted a Triangle Melt with ham from My Living Room. And maybe a tasty beverage. I settled for a 6″ sub from Get Go and a Woodchuck. (See also, fail.)

I want spring. Or Florida. Or summer and pool time. NOW.

I am going to see SkateRat’s band on Wednesday at Mr. Smalls. I have no idea where Mr. Smalls is, except that it’s in Millvale. IDK. I’m going with many people from My Living Room. It’s going to be awesome. Apparently a band named The Toasters is also playing. Again, IDK.

I am also going to see the Carolina Chocolate Drops again, thanks to a Twitter friend. I’m a little excited about it.

I’m attending a meeting on Thursday about the next PodCamp. I will be more involved for sure.

And the maybe best part? I am no longer The Organization’s go-to person for everything on the planet. Meaning, I have no responsibilities, no requirements, nothing. I no longer have to ask my family to change stuff, or ask work to not schedule me, because of said organization. I have no ties to them, whatsoever, except for never paying dues again. I did my time.

So besides my parents being sick, the snow and my eventual scar, I win at life this week.  And it’s only Monday.

Happy soul.

16 02 2011

Realizing that your soul is happy because of something you did? It’s an amazing feeling.

I felt it Saturday night. After we finished up and packed away Chachiplays. I realized, instead of what I did years ago – meeting friends at a bar, having a few drinks and chatting – my friends and I spent all of, or the better part of, 24 hours helping my friend play video games, and raising money for Make Room For Kids. My soul and my person were made whole and so happy. Really.

Granted, we went to a bar/restaurant after the event and most of us ate like we had never had food before (okay, just me and my French Onion Soup and amazing chevre salad.)

But really… when I got home? I felt so fulfilled. And I keep telling people about Chachiplays. Some are mad I didn’t tell them earlier. (Sorry!)

And others watched my hour of rugby with Chachi and then donated $50. Also, they texted me to ask  about the “dirty bunny” and I corrected them and explained it was the ScareHouse Bunny, whom I hope I am now friends with? Maybe?

And then I heard about how my laugh is apparently contagious and people love it… (I’ve heard that a lot lately. My laugh. Contagious.)  I’m so confused by that, but, I love that my co-worker donated…  she’s an awesome presence at My Living Room. And that her boyfriend heard my loud laughter rooms away from where she was? And knew it was me, and it made him laugh? Makes me smile like crazy. Apparently more contagious laughter. IDK.

I loved helping Chachi. LOVED. And I can’t wait till next year… I already volunteered.

But what makes this even more worth my soul being happy?

Chachi is going to be recognized by the city for his event. WOWZA.

See this link to learn more.

I cannot be more proud of my friend, Chachi. He did a great thing. I will be there on March 1st at 10am. To see my amazing friend accept this amazing honor.

This makes me and my soul so happy. SO HAPPY.

I love that Chachi is one of my best friends. As are the peeps that helped him. Missy, Mike and Matt. I love you guys. I am honestly honored to have been a part of this. Thanks. You are all amazing. I’m blessed.


11 02 2011

I just got home from the beginning of Chachiplays. Things were going great when I left, and Chachi was well into hour three of his 24 hours playing video games.

I originally gave $25 towards the cause, but then I found out if you gave $50, you could play a game with Chachi for an hour. So I gave an extra $25.

But what game would we play? I’m not a big gamer! So I thought about games I played in the past, that I don’t own and the few that I do… I originally wanted something fun, so Pikmin it was.

And then I started thinking of other games. Especially for one where I might have an advantage… And I came up with one… EA Sports RUGBY!

Chachi has been a great friend, and has come to watch a rugby match or two since I’ve known him. However, he still doesn’t understand the play of the game and the rules. And, well, rugby has been my life for nearly 10 years, so I got that all taken care of.

But there was a problem… Rugby isn’t exactly a popular video game, let alone common sport. It’s not like I can wander into a used game store and expect to find a used copy… So I sent a message out on Facebook and to the rugby folks. And I found someone with the game! And they are willing to let me stop by in the morning and pick it up!

I have no idea what buttons to push to make things happen, but we have an hour, so I’ll figure it out eventually. I should also point out that the last time I played this game? Probably 1996. Yeah. Maybe it’s not so much of an advantage for me.

But it sure will be fun. My time slot is 11am. You can watch me play live at


5 02 2011

So if you are new to the interwebz, and perhaps Twitter, you may not have heard about ChachiPlays

ChachiPlays is an amazing adventure my friend, Chachi, devised to play video games and raise money for Make Room for Kids.

If you don’t know, Make Room for Kids is an amazing fundraising venture from my other friend, Ginny.

But back to Chachi… His idea was for every $100 given, he’d play video games for one hour, up to 24 hours ($2400 for Make Room for Kids).

I gave $25. Good cause, good friends. I win.

Chachi will be playing video games with the likes of the previously mentioned Ginny, and some other awesome news and interwebz folks.

You can find us at Ninja Entertainment, 404 Smithfield Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15219. I have no idea where that is yet, but I’ll find out pretty soon. (You’ll see why in a sec.) The event begins at 7pm on February 11th, and ends on February 12th at 7pm.

Where do I come in? And why “Security?” Well, Chachi asked if I knew any ruggers who could be security for the event… Unfortunately, I couldn’t think of any of them who would volunteer their time to work for free for  random hours at a video game event. (Correct me if I’m wrong, ruggers… you just don’t seem the video game “type” and anyone I asked gave me a blank stare.)

So I, originally as a kinda joke, I said I’d do it….  I’ll help my friends in any way, shape or form that I can… But working security is sooooo “Old Me.” In my first adventure in My Living Room, I worked as the “door person” more than a few times…

I was ANGRY back then, thus this blog…. But now? At the bar? I’m so happy and pleasant (after 5 mo or so) I STILL surprise myself being happy when I work… (happened today! surprise! happy!)

After a few weeks of trying to find “security”, it turns out that only myself and @SilentNinja are available and willing…

Thanks to my schedule at work, I’ll be helping with security at ChachiPlays. I can’t wait. Nothing better for me or my soul than helping out a friend do good for KIDS!!!!

I will be a happy security person. HAPPY. I can’t help it. Hoping for no issues, and I foresee no issues…

But what I do love about this, is that I can wear my “fun” shirts I used to wear at My Living Room… yay for random variety of uniform….

Loving this. Love Chach. Happy. Imagine that. Excited for this job. TRUE STORY.

Social Media AND Yinz Team? WIN.

This reminds me that I’m probably the luckiest girl in the world to have my Yinz Team friends, plus ruggs friends and social media friends….

Now to move my family NORTH. Heh. (Fail.)


30 12 2010

I’m totally in a conundrum here…

Do I want to go back and do the plunge this year? I was there in 2009. Missed 2010 because I’m a moron. (big surprise.)

I don’t miss that “Holy crap was that cold!” thing… but I do love the idea of it.

The Nana hates that I consider it, even now, but Lili thinks it’s awesome.

Anywho… The Yinz Polar Bear Plungers, are again returning to our original post-plunge home, My Living Room, this year.

This makes me so happy. Even if I don’t jump in the river. I’m happy that my friends love My Living Room as much as I do and know we have good food and good employees, and want to spend their time there.

I asked again, same as last time, for special permission to open early and I was given the okay. But that was for me to open and tend bar… I still needed someone to cook.

And my buddy Rook has agreed to show up hours early to cook while I bartend.

I cannot tell you how happy I am that my friends want to come to My Living Room that early on New Year’s Day. I cannot tell you how happy I am that Rook agreed to show up early and cook for my friends.

What I can tell you is that I can’t wait for New Year’s Day and the opportunity to see and tend bar for my good friends. I cannot wait for it.

I’m so happy to be able to bring the Yinz Polar Plunge group back to My Living Room.

Thank you, friends, for supporting me, and for again supporting My Living Room. You know I love it there, and that I love you all. So, thanks. It means a lot to me that you asked for this, and I’m so happy I could make it happen. I can’t wait for New Year’s Day!!