Monday, December 22, 2008

Why Dogs Become Killers

Some of my friends have a little taste for the gothic and grotesque. But I wonder, are their stomachs strong enough for this?

These women are lucky to still have their trachea. See even more here.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Customized Google map!

Here's a little test of a relatively obscure feature in Google Maps: you can mark them up yourself, and save them! Just right for when Google doesn't have something placed quite right, or (rare) not at all. You can draw roads, shapes, put placemarks, write descriptions, it's all pretty cool. Then you can embed the live map, not just a static image, right into your email. Helpful for your Christmas parties!

This is a live map showing the correct location and entrance to Elevation Chophouse & Skybar. You can drag the map around right where it is, or click to see a larger version of the map. Click the blue items and see what happens.

View Larger Map
In other news, I've learned that I'm playing two shows with Heaven Davis on New Year's Eve: first is an early slot at the Peach Drop event downtown (around 7pm), then out to Elevation for the main event.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

New Santa vid & pix

Hi friends, I just wanted to share some new things with you.

First, this shot from Alpharetta Athletic Club's annual Santa event, shot by Ellen Nolen of event photographers. I had a great time at this shoot, the photo crew was great to work with, the kids were adorable, and I hope to get clearance from the parents to post their photos soon. (click photo to enlarge, as usual)

Then from Elevation comes this cool little video Christmas card:

Also from Elevation is this slide show, mostly taken from an office party on Dec. 4th (which was when the video above was shot). Thanks and Happy Holidays to Vascular Surgical Associates.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Watta Weekend!

Things started cooking on Thursday afternoon, when I met up with a client at the local Target/Starbucks for briefing on a Santa home visit. She had photos of the key family members, with their names on the back, for me to memorize. She had written detailed staging instructions, schedule, and directions to her house that she says is too new for GPS or Google Maps. She asked if I had a Santa bag, because she had "a few toys" for me to hand out - turned out to be a LOT of bulky stuff that I spent a half-hour trying to find a way to fit into my big bag, popping a few stitches, and almost too heavy for me to carry.

When that was done, I came home and caught a brief nap before heading out to Elevation in Kennesaw where I needed to set up the bandstand early, then go into hiding and become Santa for shmoozing a party of doctors at Elevation at 6:30, followed by the band show at 7:00. Michael, the manager at Elevation, had a videographer shooting me (in HD no less!) partying with and playing for the crowd; by Saturday, he had put together a cute little video montage to use as a Christmas card. I'll post the link as soon as I get it.

Friday, I went to Norcross to teach the students I had to reschedule from Thursday, then back to Elevation for the Friday night show which was monopolized by a company party that makes furnishings for McDonald's (they distinguished themselves by leaving zero in tips).

Saturday I had cleared my day of students; got up way too early and drove down to Newnan for a neighborhood Santa show there. Adorable kids, and an elf who had driven 2 hours from Gainesville to help entertain them. No pro photographer, every parent (and grandparent) had their own camera, so lots of comedy there. Back to Roswell in time for late lunch, then up to Ducktown for the home visit (the one with the big bag and Mission Impossible planning). Hid my car, snuck in through the kitchen, then down the stairs to the family room where everyone was gathered (but only my client and her husband were expecting me). Passed out the gifts, gathered the small kids for a reading of Night Before Christmas, then made my sneaky exit. Got home for a nap and a breather before heading out to Elevation for the evening show. Saw some old friends and their wives, an unexpected pleasure, and my granddaughter Lauren made a rare appearance with her friend Claudia.

The coolest thing (by far!) of the evening for me was the liquid nitrogen margarita, pictured here. Amazing, with the fog erupting up out of the mixing bowl, just like one of Mr. Wizard's most spectacular demonstrations! And dangerously good too; if they make a pina colada like that, you better just call me a cab right now.

Sunday was the Santa show I had been most looking forward to, as I had booked it back around August; a Santa sitting at Alpharetta Country Club, shot by EagleShots Photography. The kids were adorable and some of the photos look good enough for magazines; as soon as we secure rights from the parents, I'll put some up. After that, home for an afternoon nap and a long day of hanging out with Barbara, catching up on TiVo and playing her favorite non-golf activity, Rummicube.

So, it's been a good weekend; tiring, productive, satisfying. I hope I can keep on suffering like this for the rest of the month.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Gigs this weekend 12/4-6, and beyond

This is a quick one to tell you about a public Santa visit and gig, combined! I'll be appearing as Santa George this Thursday at 6:30 at Elevation Chophouse & Skybar (link below), at McCollum Field (Kennesaw airport). This is a nice place; the food reminds me of Little Alley, but it's much roomier and has a raised stage. They even have this extra spectacular dessert, ice cream made at your table with liquid nitrogen. Showy! Then I'll be playing with my trio from 7 to 10, doing the smooth music early on and getting to the party music as the night progresses. The management and staff are very pleasant, equal to the excellent food & drink; you'll like this place.

Then we're playing most Fridays and Saturdays in December there; Dec. 5-6, 12-13, and 19-20. The hours then will be more like 8:30-11:30.

Elevation is located on Chastain Rd (McCollum Pkwy NW), west of Kennesaw State University (tell your KSU friends there's some live music nearby!) and just east of Hwy 41. Turn in on Cessna Lane and you'll come right to it.

I still have a few timeslots available for Santa visits. You can check out my Santa photos at my Santa website, and call or email me anytime.

One last thing - if you're getting my emails at your work email address, I urge you to get a personal account and use that instead. I recommend Yahoo mail or Gmail rather than an ISP based account like Charter or Comcast. Especially in this gloomy economy, companies monitor your email and that's one of the first things they'll use against you when they want to get rid of you. Also, I don't make it past some corporate spam filters. And another last thing, I've been having trouble getting emails sent from Bellsouth internet customers, so if you get no response or a bounce from me, leave a message on ReverbNation.

See you soon, and I'll have some funny Santa stories to tell. Here's one right now: last Saturday I did a photo shoot for Roswell Neighbor newspaper. Today the paper came out, and there's a huge color photo of me right on the front page, with a cute little 3-year-old on my lap. She got her name in the paper, I didn't. Who's more famous now? *chuckle*