March 2002

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March 25, 2002:  Damn, it's the end of March already!  Hehehe, and I had so much stuff to write that I didn't.  Well, I'm too tired to do it right now, but maybe I'll remember later on :)

This past weekend, Justin and I moved into a new apartment together.  It's a 2 bedroom, in the same complex I was living in.  It's a great new place.  It's huge compared to my other place.  We started moving on Friday evening and finished late Saturday morning.  By 3:00 pm on Saturday, everything was moved in and the old apartment was totally cleaned out.  Uggghhhh, one thing that SUCKED is that we moved from the 1st floor of one building to the third floor of another.  My calves are killing me!  Oh well, it was a great workout :) 

The apt. is already looking pretty damn good.  The living/dining rooms are all setup as is the kitchen.  There are only a little items to put away.  Hahaha, our bedrooms are another story.  They will take a few more days to totally setup, but they are getting there.

So get this, on Saturday night, being totally exhausted, we went to IKEA so that I could get a new computer desk. Well, we buy it, and it's really nice, but I don't know what I was thinking, because there was no way that desktop was going to fit into the A4.  Well, sure enough, they wheel it out and I go "shit".... I was so tired, I was just gonna return it, but then I got and idea.  I went back inside and bought 3 small area rugs which cost a total of $8.  I laid them on my room and then put the table top on top it it.  Then I took about 20' of twine and tied that sucker down.  You should have seen the looks we were getting as we strap this big ol' box to the top of a brand new Audi A4.  A few people stopped to comment on the car, but most just chuckled or stared in amazement as they walked by.  Well, it was a nice ride home, doing about 50 MPH on a highway where I usually do about 80 MPH (as was everyone else that night!).  Well, we made it home 30 minutes later without incident or damage to the car :)  The new desk looks great!

Sunday was spent unpacking and resting.  Around 5:00 PM we headed over to Michael and Shannon Tanner's place for their daughter Guilliana's BDay party (which started at noon). Of course, we missed the party, but had plenty of fun just hanging out with them We stayed until 9:00 and then headed home to crash.

And here is the latest addition to the Berkely family over in the UK.  This would have been Graham Berkeley's nephew:

"Dear All,
 

Baby James Graham Berkeley arrived at 5.14GMT Fri 1st March 2002.  Mother and baby are doing fine after a difficult labour. Both are now home and settling down nicely.I have attached a few pictures for you.
Regards to all of you,
 

Chris n Deb Berkely"

Absolutely beatiful :-)  God bless you James Graham....
 

On another happy note, Paul Barnes sent me this awesome link.. it's an awesome way to spend a week and one day, I'm going to do it: (here it is in case the link dies:)

"JIMMY BUFFETT'S CARIBBEAN 
by Mark Seal
 

Celebrating the release of his latest CD, Far Side of the World, Jimmy Buffett takes us on his ultimate island-hopping tour of the tropical paradise. 

(Photo by Rose Hartman)  I’ve always looked at life as a voyage … with a thousand ports of call behind me and, I hope, a thousand more to see,” writes singer/songwriter Jimmy Buffett in his best-selling autobiography, A Pirate Looks at Fifty. Few performers epitomize their geography better than Jimmy Buffett does the Caribbean. Born in Mississippi, he did a stint in Nashville, but didn’t find his voice — or his audience — until he moved to Key West, Florida, in the early ’70s. As Buffett’s star rose, his sails opened and he began living his songs, captaining all manner of boats throughout the Caribbean and piloting the Albatross, a 10-passenger Grumman seaplane. Parrotheads, as Buffett’s band of global groupies are called, have reason to rejoice this month: the release of Far Side of the World, his 33rd album. So doff the tie and throw away the wristwatch. It’s time for an island-hopping weekend with Jimmy Buffett in the Caribbean.

FRIDAY
LODGING
"One of my favorite hotels in the whole Caribbean is in Haiti: the Oloffson in Port-au-Prince. From Lillian Hellman to Graham Greene, it has an incredible literary history. To me, it’s the Caribbean of the ’30s. In Nevis, you can either stay in a big, fancy resort like the Four Seasons, or you can get into Hurricane Cove, near the airport. It has verandas and palm-lined beaches. [On Harbour Island in the Bahamas] I have some friends who run the Pink Sands Hotel, which I like. [On Jamaica] I stayed over at Strawberry Hill, which is one of Chris Blackwell’s Island Outpost hotels. I also stay at Goldeneye, which was Ian Fleming’s house. Goldeneye is a wonderful spot. It’s like being in a James Bond movie. If you want action, go to St. Barts. I owned a hotel there, which was more of an all-night bar than it was a hotel, but it burned to the ground. Now my favorite hotel there is the Eden Rock."

MUSIC
“I took my kids to the Bob Marley Museum in Kingston, Jamaica. If you’re a Bob Marley fan, you should go there. It’s a funky little place, but worth going to. The great thing about the Caribbean is the diversity of the music. I have made it my business to collect CDs from the islands. Calypso, reggae, soukous, zook, you name it, I like it.”

DINNER
“I always liked Papillote underneath Trafalgar Falls in Dominica. It serves mountain chicken, which is like these large frogs. Of course, everything tastes like chicken, but they’re great. There’s a hot waterfall and a cold waterfall up at the falls. They’ll take you from the airport and drop you at this little restaurant, and then you can hike to the falls and come down and have a meal.”

NIGHTLIFE
“I’ve always wanted to do ‘The Jimmy Buffett 10 Best Bars in the Caribbean’ as a show. Just get in my seaplane and play these bars. I’d start in Bimini at the Compleat Angler, where Hemingway lived and which influenced The Old Man and the Sea. Then the Staniel Cay Club in the Bahamas and Happy People Marina. Happy People has a great dance floor and Staniel Cay’s got a great dinner. Then I would go to Kaye’s on Rum Cay, which is down at the end of the Bahamas. It’s a very remote, very beautiful island. From the Bahamas, I’d stop at the Turtle Cove Inn in Providenciales, which I would put as one of my top 10 seafood restaurants in the world. They do the best fresh conch dishes there. I’d then go to the Anegada Reef Hotel and play there. After that, Le Select in St. Barts, where I let them use the Cheeseburger in Paradise trademark for the restaurant and I get to eat and drink free for the rest of my life. If I was heading south from there, one of my other little spots would be the Admiral’s Inn in Antigua. It’s where all the yachties go. And there’s Frangipani, a great little French hotel with a great restaurant in Bequia.”

SATURDAY
BREAKFAST
“I eat breakfast at Eden Rock on St. Jean Beach in St. Barts. I like the view because I used to live in St. Jean. I wrote a couple of books and albums there, and I used to rent a room at the Eden Rock. It was kind of my office.”

BEACHES
“The most deserted beaches I’ve ever seen are on Long Island in the Bahamas. There are a couple of little hotels there and this incredibly long pink sand beach. The beaches in Barbuda, off of Antigua, are absolutely beautiful, too. The reefs have some of the best diving in the world.”

FISHING
“Up-island in the Bahamas, I’d have to say Harbour Island. You can fish there, and there are nice restaurants and a marina. Just look up “Bonefish Joe” Cleare, and he’ll take you fishing. I think every island has a Bonefish Joe, but he’s probably the best one.” 

MOUNTAINS
“There are beaches in Jamaica, but I go for the mountains. I really like islands with mountains. It’s that incredible rivers-meet-the-ocean kind of thing. Dominica is probably my favorite, and Jamaica as well. I like the Cockpit Country up in the Jamaican mountains. Tropically lush plants. And it just smells good. You get away from the heat of the beach and get into altitude, and there are farms up there and beautiful rolling hills and mountains and rivers, and you can see the ocean.”

LUNCH
“I like to eat at my own restaurants in Jamaica. Margaritaville in Montego Bay, and Marguerite’s, which is the restaurant next to it. Marguerite’s is the best restaurant in MoBay, and not just because I happen to be in business with them. It’s kind of a combination of jerk and Cajun, and it’s really nice there. I’m getting ready to go down in a couple of weeks to open Island Village [a Margaritaville clone] in Ocho Rios. Then there’s a little hotel and restaurant called The Caves in Negril, which is a great spot. It’s just basic Jamaican: beans and rice and jerk. It’s also a great place to stay because the rooms are carved out of caves.”

SHOPPING
“Here’s what I bring back from the islands: King, the great grapefruit drink that you can’t get in America. I will shop for wine in St. Barts. I love blush wines. Everything is exorbitantly priced in St. Barts, but one of the great bargains is the rose wines. The other thing is this great coconut oil from Nevis that they press down there. Of course, there’s no sunscreen in it whatsoever, but it’s the best coconut oil around. I collect hot sauces from all the islands. Naturally, each island thinks it has the best peppers. My favorites are Matouk’s from Trinidad and Pickapeppa from Jamaica.”

DINNER
“First, I’d go to Le Select in St. Barts and have a Ti Punch. If I could pick anywhere for dinner in the Caribbean, it would be Maya’s on St. Barts. Maya’s is right on the water and they have great French-Creole cuisine. After that, I’d go to Bete A Z’ailes, a great place for music on the harbor. I’d finish my night at Le Ti-St. Barths, which is as close to the misbehaving that I remember when I owned my hotel on St. Barts.”

SUNDAY
HIKING
“There’s this incredible hike from Cap-Haïtien, a city down on the water in Haiti, up into the old fortress of Henri Christophe, who was the first king of Haiti. He built these palaces that were based on Versailles and San Souci right there in the jungles of Haiti. They’re all ruins now, but it’s amazing to take the walk up the road they built to this fortress. Last week, I took my son over to Brimstone Hill in St. Kitts, which is the fortress that’s called the Gibraltar of the Indies. It has an incredible history of the Amerindians that the French were fighting. The fort has monkeys climbing all over it. You can take a cab ride from the airport in St. Kitts. It’s worth a day trip.”

ONE HUNGRY DAY IN THE CARIBBEAN
“I can tell you how ‘Cheeseburger in Paradise’ got written. It was probably 1974, and I was on my very first boat, a 33-foot sailboat. We had gotten into some weather and had to go into Ponce in Puerto Rico to get fixed. We sailed from Ponce with a rigged-up bow spread that was broken, and it was a rough passage. We sailed into Roatán, got off the boat, and were starving. We were dying for a cheeseburger after being at sea for 10 days eating fish. And there, like an oasis, was this brand-new restaurant at the Village Cay Marina. We went in and just started gobbling cheeseburgers and drinking piña coladas because we were so glad to be on land. We had about three cheeseburgers each. For some reason, as I was walking out I looked and saw a package in the kitchen and the label was written in French: Cuoderrie Produit de Cheval. Do you know what cheval is? Horse. I went back to the guy and said, ‘This will never do. You’ve got a good idea here, but you’ve got to take the horse meat off the menu.’ We went back the next day and the owner was very proud that he’d gotten real hamburger from Puerto Rico, and we sampled the cheeseburgers again. I wrote the song right there: ‘Cheeseburger in paradise, heaven on earth with an onion slice.’”

Mark Seal is an American Way contributing editor whose work has also appeared in Vanity Fair, Esquire, Playboy, Time, and Town & Country".
 

Well, I'm totally pooped so I'm going to hit the hay.  This cute image is courtesy of my friend David Parker who is a huge Pluto fan.  Hopefully, I'll get to see him this week and hang out for a bit.

For the life of me, I can't remember what the heck I did last weekend.  I'm sure it'll come back to me at some point.  I'm just too sleepy right now.

I hope all is well in your neck of the woods.

Boat drinks!

~Penz
 
 

March 11, 2002:  It's hard to believe that it has been 6 months....  It's kind of a strange day....  lot's of feelings and emotions are swirling around inside of me.  Most of them are positive and happy feelings... but of course, there is a bit of sadness mixed in there..

Twin Towers MemorialI'm so thankful for the wondrous friends and family that I have in my life, for today, any feelings of sadness are greatly outweighed by the warmth and comfort of their love, compassion and strength...  And among them, in kindred spirit, exists Graham.  The memory of his beautiful smile and his everlasting radiant spirit still provide me with that amazing spark of energy which he always gave everyone he met.  To this day, it helps remind me just how precious and wondrous life is....

So, 6 months later, I hope that each of you will join me in rejoicing and celebrating the precious gifts of life and of being loved that each of us share.  Do so by reaching out to someone you love and care for dearly, and remind them with all of your heart, that you do.

In my thoughts today are Becky, Lisa, Susan, Rob, Graham's family and friends, and all of my family and friends....

Well, that's about all for now.

All the best,

Scott "Penz" Penziner

"the future is no place to keep your better days.."  (Dave Matthews Band)
 

March 10, 2002:  Well, the Audi is broken in!  I had a great weekend down in LA!  On Friday night, I got down to West Lake Village and met up with Adam.  We hung out w/a couple of his friends for a few and then met up with his brother Mike for dinner at a great restaurant called Killer Shrimp!  Hehehe, all they have is Shrimp w/rice, pasta or bread.  The shrimp are served in a spicy/tasty tomato based broth which rocked!  After the meal, we joined his friends Matthew and Jaffa who were celebrating their wedding anniversary there as well.  After that, we went back to Adam's place and crashed.

The next morning, we went and washed our cars (of course, my baby was dirty!) and then picked up Michael and headed to Jack's in the center of town for breakfast.  There we met up with Adam's friend Doug and his girlfriend.  After a good meal, it was off to Josh (Adam's manager's house down by the lake) where we went for a very relaxing boat ride on the late (so relaxing, I fell asleep and was snoring! hehehe, well, I was relaxed!).  After that, we all went to a restaurant called Islands which is a parrot head's paradise!  I want my house to look like this restaurant :-)  Hahah, well, after a good lunch, Adam and I followed Josh over to Disney and I got to see where Adam worked.  Talk about a COOL place to work!  Damn, every cube was filled with pictures, toys, and drawings.  It has to be an awesome work environment!  If I was an artist, I would want to be there working :)  Towards the end of the afternoon, I dropped Adam off and headed down to Pasadena to see John and Joe in their brand new house.  It was beautiful!  These two really did a wonderful job working with their contractors to re-do the house.  Wood floors, tile, new windows, lot's of painting and interior work paid off and now they have a beautiful new place (about a mile away from their old one :)  That night, we all went out to dinner and had a great meal in Pasadena. 

The next morning, I left John and Joe's and at 9:45 am and arrived back in Dublin at 2:00!  Hahaha, do the math... I made GREAT time (and yes, exceeded the speed limit :)

Oh yeah!  Hehehe, Justin pointed out that he also got a new car (last month) and that I hadn't put a picture of it up here.  So, here it is!  2001 VW GTI VR6 in "Rave Green".  It is sweet!  It is fully loaded and is an awesome ride :)  He's loving (though sometimes he claims to miss his Honda Del Sol ;-)

Well, that's about it for now.  I hope all's well in your neck of the woods :)

Penz

March 4, 2002:  Hey there!  How are you doing?  Well, I hope :-)  Hahaha, yeah, I'm in a great mood today and I'm just going to let that shine through (hopefully it will be contagious :)  So, what's been going on you ask?  Well, the weekend before last, I had a great time when Gini and Johnson came out here for a 4 day visit.  We had a great visit together :-)  Also, adding to the fun during her stay, Adam "Skinny Daug" Arnold came up for the weekend and totally helped make a great weekend.  It was really nice to have everyone together for a few days.  Alas, time flew quickly, and after 4 days of jaunting around the SF Bay area, from Marin, to SF, to Half Moon Bay and lot's of places in between, Gini and Johnson flew back to MA and arrived safe and sound :-)

Let's see, the weekend of the 23'rd, Justin and I are moving into a 2 BR apt. together, as friends.  It should work out pretty good for the both of us.  We are great roommates, great friends, and know just how to drive each other nuts!  Hahaha, did I say that?  No seriously, it's gonna be fine.  We're planning on living together for 3-6 months, during which time, there's a chance one/both of us could be moving back towards the East coast.  With this arrangement, we save some $$ and get to enjoy each others company.

Justin is now the Assistant Manager at the Starbuck's about 1/4 mile from our place.  It's going to work out very well for him :)

Work for me is crazy but good.  I'm still enjoying it, though the stress level has been pretty high lately.  Lot's of reasons for it, but this isn't the place to bitch about it.  Maybe I'll call YOU and bitch about it :)  Hahah, probably not......

<-- Oh yeah, this weekend, I BOUGHT A NEW CAR!  Hahaha, it was a totally unexpected but pleasant event.  Justin and I were in Palo Alto driving by the Honda dealership where I bought my Civic SI.  Well, there is an Audi/Porche dealership next door and Justin suggested for the ump-teenth time that I check out the Audi A4.  Well, I said, what the hell..... I took a test drive, fell in love, ran some #s with the dealer, and then signed the paper.  On Monday AM I got the call that I was approved for the loan and Monday night, I picked up my 2002 Audi A4 1.8 Turbo Quattro!  I LOVE IT!  It's got the following specs/options:  5 speed manual, color is "Dolphin Gray", Sports Package (17" wheels 5 spoke cast allow wheel, super high performance tires, sports suspension), Premium Package (built in remote's for the garage/gate, autodimming mirrors, digital compass in rear view mirror), Bose Premium Sound System (kicks ass!  10 speakers, 215 watts, 6 disk in dash CD changer, it rocks!), sunroof, Xenon headlights (they are cool!), black leatherette interior.  It's got a turbo, it's all wheel drive, has anti lock breaks, traction control, more airbags that I can count, and overall, just a great feel to it.  Oh yeah, it also has a full sized spare tire on the same rim!  4 year/50K mile bumper to bumper warranty, maintenance plan and roadside assistance.  This is a quality automobile and I just think it's great!

Yes, I loved my Civic SI and it served me well, but it was time to move on and move up to something that's really fun and comfortable to drive.  Oh yeah, did I mention the seats in the A4 are soooo comfortable!?! :-)  Hahaha, yep, I'm happy. 

For more info on the car, check out their website:  http://www.audiusa.com

On Sunday I went to chuch with Rob and Susan and then spent the afternoon with them.  It was really nice!  The sermon this week was on love!  Some memorable quotes were:

"The commandments, 'Do not commit adultery,' 'Do not murder,' 'Do not steal,' 'Do not covet,' and whatever other commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"
--Romans 13:9

"Be devoted to one another in brotherly love.  Honor one another above yourselves."
--Romans 12:10

"Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law."
--Romans 13:8

Hahah, don't worry, I'm not becoming preachy on ya.  My friend Matt Smith just happened to send me some of these quotes pertaining to frienship and I remembered I heard them this weekend. :)

Let's see, what else, I got cool email from Steve "Milkman" Mayou.  Milkman writes "Guess what... I just read your home page and that has inspired me to buy a sail boat ... her name is Mary Jane (have to change it for navy reasons)... buy she's a beaute, I'lve been listening to Jimmy now for 2 days straight ( I bought the box set)."  Hahaha, congrats to you Milky!  I can't wait to come out to see it!!

OH YEAH!  I've started the Atkins diet.  Last Wednesday was my first day.  I've given up all carbs (that means no bread, cereal, pasta, potatoes, starchy foods, fruit, sugar, etc...) for the month of March.  I'm determined to drop a few pounds and this seems like a good way to try and do it.  I can eat all the meat I want and most veggies.  I can also drink diet sodas (made with Splenda sweetener) that I want.  That's just a brief synopsis of the diet.  For more, go to:  http://www.atkinsdiet.com  I'll let you know how things go at the end of this month :)

Ok, well, that's about it for now.  This weekend I'm heading down to LA to see Adam.  I'm also going to try and see John Millard while I'm down there and maybe even Sean Joyce.  We'll see :-)  Hahah, I just want to break in my car so that I can really enjoy it!  I figure a 700 mile trip down and back to LA will do it :-)

I hope all is well in your world.  Drop me a line and let me know!

Penz


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