Just Ducky!

Last week, Marc wrote about my second favorite event of the New York trip: Big Duck Day.

When we were planning the trip, Marc designed this really cool website for us to go to and rate what we wanted to see, etc. Well, I did my voting one night pretty late--and when a picture of this store in the shape of a duck popped up, I giggled to myself for about 10 minutes. A few weeks later, all the trip participants met to go over possible itineraries. And again, I just couldn't help giggling. It's a giant duck. I was really the only one very excited by it.

So what is the Big Duck? Well, in the 1920s or 30s, a Long Island duck farmer went to California and saw how merchants used odd-shaped buildings to attract customers. So, in 1931, he built a 20-ft. tall, 30-ft. duck to sell his ducks and duck eggs. (Interestingly, now--according to RoadsideAmercia.com--in the world of architecture, any building shaped like its product is referred to as a "duck." So see, this building is important.)

The Big Duck was closed when we got there, but we got to peek inside the door and see it's now a cute little gift shop. I'm not sure if you can still buy duck eggs.
We didn't stay long but just got photos and left.
Now, I need to go back to see it at night. After all, it's got Model T break lights for eyes that shine bright red in the dark. Evil Duck! And I should go at Christmas, so I can see it decorated for the holidays (go here and scroll down) when the town actually gathers to have the annual lighting of the big duck.

Of course, I couldn't let the opportunity to go by without taking a goofy photo.

Red Fez Monkey: The Truth

As I mentioned recently, I've officially moved out of my office. I have a little cubicle now for when I go in once a week. The only thing that really marks that it's mine is an Eagle lamp. It's a long way from what used to mark my digs.

Now that I've packed everything up, it seems apropos to tell the shocking truth behind Red Fez Monkey's long disappearance. One day, I realized that one of my 5 or 6 little pencil toppers was gone. The story is PTOIT history from there. I created this whole elaborate blog stunt about him being missing, Purple Fez Monkey going on an adventure to find him and their triumphant return home.

What I haven't told anyone is that the Red Fez Monkey who came back wasn't the real one. No, he was part of a new set of pencil topper monkeys that Marc got me. Having a new Red Fez allowed me to pretend like the story was over and that he was back.

In reality, I still had no idea what happened to that stupid little pencil topper. I really had decided it fell into the garbage. Until one morning when I came in to work to chat with Designer Doug. And on his desk was Red Fez Monkey.

I had given him to Doug. And forgot.

Now, the fez monkeys have been distributed through the office. A couple are still with me. The rest are having their own adventures with new owners.

Meeting S-Pods

I haven't written much about how Scott Podsednik's been doing since he's returned to the Sox. I, like everyone, have been shocked. I mean, I am his biggest fan, but I had no idea he still had this in him. He can certainly ignite an offense.

I've gotten to see him in a few games this season at The Cell (and wanted to share these two pics I really like.) But what I've been really stoked about was seeing him in person. About 2 months ago, I heard a vague mention of Scotty Pods being at a car dealership off of 57. I've been counting down the days.

That day was Saturday.

I was surprised about two weeks or less ago to see on the car dealership's web site that the autograph signing was not just Scott, but Bobby Jenks, too. Unfortunately, Bobby's kidney stones kept him away. So it was just Podsednik.

Oh, and there was another rep of the White Sox there, too.

I stood in line about 2.5 hours, I think. The signing started at 10 and I got there about 8:45. I got a good position in line but I was actually surprised how many people were already there. Probably a good 150-200. When I left at about 11:15, I was shocked by how long the line was. Lots of people went home empty-handed.

Above, Scotty signs something for a young couple in line with me. They and their 5-month-old were at the Perfect Game so we had much to discuss. I hadn't noticed what they got signed until I looked at this picture on my computer: a little pink Sox bib. Awesome.

I was bummed because when the signing started, everyone could get 2 items signed. But then, 20 people in front of me or less, they changed it to one item. Bummer. I put away my World Series Sports Illustrated with Pods on the cover and just got a special World Series ball signed.


Actually, I am notoriously bad about talking to celebrities when I meet them. After all, I told a former president that I made his menu. But I did OK this time. I just said, "Congrats on how this season is going for you and on becoming a dad." He said, "Thanks, man. It's been fun."

I was going to bring up the whole messy issue of me jinxing him for about three years...but I thought that was best left unsaid.