Get in that boiler room!

Today was a busy day. This morning and part of the afternoon I visited my grandmother in the assisted living place she’s at in Princeton. I haven’t visited her in a while. The place is really nice and they do a great job there. I ate lunch there too.

Later during the day I met up with my buddy James from MICA. He was visiting NJ from the west coast. Earlier that day he had a meeting with Lord Whimsy. Apparently they’re going to be working on a project together. James is a little nutty, he gets a coat as a Christmas gift from Debbie Harry and now he thinks that he can work with everyone that is famous.

Anyway, when he got to my house I asked him where he wanted to go to eat. He said he wanted DeLorenzo’s, unfortunately we’re closed on Mondays so I had to take him to the enemy, the DeLorenzo’s in Robbinsville. It was pretty good I must admit. The service sucks though. So James and I stopped at Canal’s and then met up with Jimmy Murray at DeLorenzo’s.

Afterwards James left to go back to Long Branch cause he was leaving for the west coast in the morning and Jimmy and I headed to our usual Monday night gathering spot, Jo Jo’s Tavern.

Now I am full with pizza, beer, dessert and coffee. Now I must rest. Happy new year!

Go Ravens!

Go Ravens!

Ravens won over the Jaguars today. Playoffs start next week against the Dolphins. The Ravens are looking real good. Anything could happen!


Little Rick got Mike Murray and I tickets for tonight’s WWE RAW at the Trenton Arena. Last time Rick got Jimmy Murray and me tickets for the 80’s night concert festival. The arena is 5 minutes away so if it’s free I’ll pretty much go see anything. I just found out today that it’s not WWF anymore. I haven’t followed wrestling in a long time. I guess it’s because I’m not 10 anymore. Regardless, it’s free and 5 minutes away so I’m sure it will be fun. Plus we’re in a special suite! SWEET!

Christmas Gifts

What does an eccentric artist get/make for his family as a Christmas gift?


Each card is a hand drawn pencil sketch of 3 sardines. Each card is slightly different. The cover of each card reads “Merry Christmas”. Inside each card reads “Live Long and Prosper”. On the opposite inner page reads “Christmas 2008, hand drawn by John Beck, x of 9”

Each tin of sardines is lovingly wrapped in Maker’s Mark wrapping paper.

Merry Christmas!


It's Lunch Time

I just made myself a pork roll and cheese sandwich. Of course I used Case’s pork roll, cause that’s the best. It was delicious. I know you wish you had some too.

Cosmi's Pastries and Potito's Bakery

After work today Big Rick and I went down to Philly. He ordered 20 boxes of honey balls from Cosmi’s Pastries. He had, earlier in the week, got boxes of honey balls from Nino’s Pastry Shop, which is usually pretty damn good. The honey balls were made all wrong at Nino’s and he went to complain, this is after he gave most of the boxes away as gifts.

So I accompanied him down to Philly. We had a lot of fun. He’s been ordering from Cosmi’s for a while now and said he should have gone there first instead of Nino’s. He gave me another box of the honey balls and these were a HUGE difference. Very good. Then he took me to another bakery not too far away called Potito’s. There he got me a tray of cookies for coming down to Philly with him. He met the owner of Potito’s a few years ago at Jefferson hospital. They ended up befriending each other. Rick often visited his shop when he was in town. A couple years later the owner died from leukemia at a relatively young age. Anyway, when we got to Potito’s the daughter remembered Rick, even some details, from Trenton, owns the pizza place. I guess he’s a hard one to forget. It was a very sweet moment.

Now I must get back to drawing my Christmas cards and back to watching Battlestar Galactica.

NASCAR Camping World truck series calendar

I received an email asking about my NASCAR calendars. Apparently I make the only 2009 and beyond NASCAR calendar subscriptions. I was asked if I could also make one for the Camping World (formerly Craftsman) truck series calendar. I honored the request and the Camping World series as well as the Sprint Cup and Nationwide series calendars can be subscribed to in the ‘File Sharing’ section. You will need Apple iCal program or something similar that will allow the subscription of these types of calendars.

SNL Digital Short: Cookies


Favorite TV shows of the week: December 7th to December 13th

1) Boston Legal - “Made In China/Last Call” +2
2) Dexter
- “I Had A Dream” -1
3) The Office - “Moroccan Christmas” -1
4) My Name Is Earl - “Orphan Earl” +2
5) 30 Rock - “Christmas Special" -1
6) Kath and Kim - “Friends” +2
7) Chuck - “Chuck Versus the DeLorean” +2
8) Pushing Daisies - “The Legend of Merle McQuoddy” -1
9) Eli Stone - “Help!” +3
10) House - “Joy to the World” No Change
11) Heroes - “Our Father” No Change
12) The Simpsons - “The Burns and the Bees” No Change
13) Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles - “Alpine Fields” No Change

My Horn Can Pierce The Sky

Princess Unicorn:

Princess Unicorn is from a distant land on a distant planet far away in the future. She came from her father, king of the unicorns, and her mother, queen of the princesses. Sorcerissa, the evil witch, cast a spell on Princess Unicorn’s parents, forcing them into another dimension, and doused Princess Unicorn in radiation. The radiation did not hurt Princess Unicorn, but gave her magical powers. She can summon her magic by holding her wand and calling out, “My horn can pierce the sky!” Now she uses her magic and beauty to write for her school paper, defend her kingdom, and battle Sorcerissa so she can be reunited with her mother and father some day.

R.I.P. Bettie Page

Bettie Page dies at 85; pinup queen played a key role in the sexual revolution of the 1960s and later became a cult figure.,0,5310709.story

Maker's Mark Gift

Every year Maker’s Mark sends me a unique gift around the holidays.This year they sent me Maker’s Mark wrapping paper along with Maker’s Mark gift tags and Maker’s Mark ribbon. Thank you Maker’s Mark for the gift and thank you for making such great tasting bourbon!


I just got back from the liquor store. I purchased a bottle of Ciroc vodka. I use that for my delicious martinis. Other than that I got all ‘wintry’ beers, stouts. Samuel Adams Cream Stout, Samuel Smiths Oatmeal Stout and Young’s Double Chocolate Stout. For some reason stouts remind me of winter. Delicious.

NetFlix Customer Service

2 weeks ago I added the Battlestar Galactica Season 3 six disc set to the top of my NetFlix queue. It was in order from disc 1 to disc 6. They sent disc 4 first. That’s no good, especially considering I’m on the 1 DVD out at a time plan, so I filed a complaint and sent it back and they sent me disc 1 right away. I had sent that back and then they sent me disc 3. What’s wrong with them?

So this time I called them up after a wait of 20 seconds I was patched through to Sara at NetFlix customer service. She has a wonderful voice and couldn’t be nicer. She told me that she would sent disc 2 out right away and to hang onto disc 3 when I get it. She told me they were having problems with sending seasons out in order so she would delete the other 3 discs from my queue and for me to just add them one at a time until they correct the problem.

Sara was more than helpful and extremely pleasant. I wished her happy holidays and the total phone called was 2 minutes long. Less than a minute after I hung up I got an email from NetFlix asking me to rate my experience.

I wish I could put in additional feedback on the experience because I found it more than satisfactory and though Sara at customer service was wonderful. Happy holidays Sara!

R.I.P. Josephine Guarnieri

After dinner at Amici’s tonight I have another viewing to go to. My Aunt Jo died. This is my second aunt to die in a week and a half. Here’s Aunt Jo’s obituary:

Josephine Guarnieri

Josephine Reno Guarnieri, 87, of Hamilton Township died Thursday at Compassionate Care Hospice at Saint Francis Medical Center, Trenton. Born in Trenton, she resided in Hamilton Township for the past 45 years. Mrs. Guarnieri retired in 2006 after more than 30 years from Little King Deli, Route 33, Hamilton Township.

She was the daughter of the late Gaetano and Antonietta Reno; sister of the late Carmen Aregnano, Frank Renio, Paul Renna, Frances Graziano, Caroline Mirabelli, Dorothy Botteri, and Madeline Scardone. She is survived by her husband of 67 years, Alfred Guarnieri; two sons and a daughter-in-law, Alan R. and Denise Guarnieri of Bordentown Township, and David Guarnieri of Hamilton Township; a sister-in-law, Sue Aregnano; two grandchildren, Alexa and Lucas Guarnieri, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

The funeral will be held 9:30 a.m. Tuesday from the Brenna Funeral Home, 340 Hamilton Ave., Trenton. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. at Saint Mary's Church, 45 Crosswicks St., Bordentown. Burial will follow in Brig. General William C. Doyle Veterans Memorial Cemetery, North Hanover Township. Calling hours for relatives and friends will be 6-9 p.m. Monday evening at the Brenna Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in her name to the Alzheimers Association, Inc., Greater NJ Chapter, 400 Morris Ave., Suite 251, Denville, NJ 07834. (973-586-4300).


Mike Murray was flying into Atlantic City Airport today and I had asked him if he would like me to pick him up. He agreed. Every time I go down to Atlantic City I always drive by the Pic-A-Lili. Since I was a kid I would see this roadside restaurant in the middle of the pine barrens and always wanted to stop there. After I picked up Mike I asked him if he was hungry and of course he was, he’s always hungry. I finally went to the Pic-A-Lili. We sat right at the bar. Besides us, there were only a handfull of other customers in there, they all sat at the bar and they all seemed to be hunters. Kinda odd. The lovely girl that waited on us said they get a lot of hunters in there. Which brings me to this, what do hunters do? Is hunting their occupation? Do they sell the animals that they catch or kill? It’s a Monday afternoon, is that their day job? Well?

SNL Digital Short: Jizz in My Pants


SNL Digital Short: Pony Express


Nick Cave Teaterkoncerten

I was doing further research on that incredible stage production of Nick Cave’s “The Mercy Seat” and I found this:

I’m still doing further research but it looks like they have this entire theatrical performance based entirely on Nick Cave songs. I haven’t a clue what they’re saying but I know the original songs and I would love to see this live.

The Mercy Seat

The Mercy Seat is one of my favorite songs by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Click the link to learn more about the song. I assembled some links to YouTube videos of various people covering song. It’s such an incredible song and nearly every version is fantastic. My favorite is the ‘acoustic’ version by Nick Cave himself, you can see a live version of that one by pressing play on the right.

There are many other Nick Cave songs that are covered on YouTube and for the most part they’re all very good. I think it has more to do with them being really well written songs to begin with. (INCREDIBLE Swedish stage production based around the song) (a fun ukulele version) (an ‘a cappella’ version with an interesting arrangement) (some full band) (this version is scary, but very interesting) (good, kinda ‘cheesy’, I think they’re trying to hard to be weird) (a weird Swedish version with a DJ?)

There are many other cover versions on YouTube but I just wanted to link the ‘live’ versions.

Here’s the original Nick Cave album version
Johnny Cash version (not really a video but an important cover)

Favorite TV shows of the week: November 30th to December 6th

1) Dexter - “Go Your Own Way” No Change
2) The Office - “The Surplus” Not Aired
3) Boston Legal - “Juiced” -1
4) 30 Rock - “Reunion" Not Aired
5) Fringe - “Safe” No Change
6) My Name Is Earl - “Reading is a Fundamental Case” Not Aired
7) Pushing Daisies - “Comfort Food” No Change
8) Kath and Kim - “Sacrifice” Not Aired
9) Chuck - “Chuck Versus the Sensei” -2
10) House - “Let Them Eat Cake” -6
11) The Life and Times of Tim
- “Theo Strikes Back/Amy Gets Wasted” New to the List
12) Eli Stone - “Happy Birthday Nate” Not Aired
13) American Dad
- “Phantom Telethon” Not Aired
14) Heroes - “The Eclipse, Part 2” No Change
15) The Simpsons
- “Mypods and Boomsticks” Not Aired
16) King of the Hill - “Straight as an Arrow” Not Aired
17) Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles - “Self Made Man” No Change

100,000 mile milestone

My car reached a milestone today, 100,000 miles. I got my Honda Civic brand new back in 1998. I am the only owner and nearly all 100,000 miles were driven by me.

I’m happy to say that I had very little trouble with my Honda over the last 10 years. What trouble I did have was very minor and easily fixable. Here’s to the next 100,000, I hope they’re as pleasant and easy going as my first 100,000.


Favorite TV shows of the week: November 23rd to November 29th

1) Dexter - “About Last Night” No Change
2) Boston Legal
- “Thanksgiving” +6
3) Entourage
- “Return to Queen’s Blvd.” No Change
4) House - “Last Resort” +10
5) Fringe - “The Dreamscape” -3
6) Pushing Daisies - “Robbing Hood” No Change
7) Chuck - “Chuck Versus the Gravitron” +4
8) Heroes - “The Eclipse, Part 1” No Change/+9
9) Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles - “Strange Things Happen at the One Two Point” No Change/+11

Harry Bush

This guy called DeLorenzo’s today. He was asking what our hours were. I don’t think I ever answered him due to me laughing so hard. It’s these little things that I find most enjoyable.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone, unless you’re not American, then in that case, well, too bad, cause we get to eat a lot of pie and you don’t.


Don’t forget. The 2 hour special of 24: Redemption will be airing tonight at 8PM on FOX. It is a warmup to the new season that starts in January. Time to get excited once again!

R.I.P. Mamie Labella

My aunt passed away late Thursday/early Friday. Here is the obituary from today’s Trenton Times. She will be greatly missed.

Mamie LaBella

Mamie (Valeri) LaBella, 85, entered into God's Care Friday in the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA. Born in Trenton, she was a lifelong area resident.

Predeceased by her parents Guilio and Caroline (DeCarolis) Valeri and a sister Catherine Parziale, she is survived by her husband of nearly 63 years, Leon J. LaBella; four sons and daughters-in-law, Andrew and Anne LaBella, Robert LaBella and Barbara Cease, Leon and Linda LaBella and Larry and Sherri LaBella; two sisters, Sue Aregnano and Mary Motchnik; her grandchildren and their spouses, Kelly Anne and Richard Hinton, Andrea and Tony Esposito, Julia LaBella and fiancée, Brian Cirillo, Sabrina and Dennis McAnulla, Nicholas LaBella, Dana LaBella, Anthony and Adrienne LaBella and Adria Cease; four great-grandchildren, Anthony Esposito, Joseph LaBella, Isabel Hinton and Madelyn McAnulla; several brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Carmella LaBella, Molly Constantine, George and Jean Lanna, Mario and Sandy LaBella, several nieces and nephews, and many family and friends.

The funeral will be held 10 a.m. Tuesday from Chambers D'Errico and Correnti Funeral Home, 825 Chambers St. in Trenton. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 11 a.m. Tuesday in St. Anthony's Church, 626 South Olden Ave., Hamilton. Burial will follow in St. Mary's Cemetery in Hamilton. Callings hours will be 8:30-10 a.m. Tuesday at the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made in her memory to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Mid-Jersey Chapter, 246 Monmouth Road Oakhurst, NJ 07755 (envelopes are available at the Funeral Home).

Favorite TV shows of the week: November 16th to November 22nd

1) Dexter - “The Damage A Man Can Do” +4
2) Fringe - “The Equation” +5
3) Entourage
- “Play’n With Fire” -1
4) It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia - “The Nightman Cometh” -3
5) The Office - “Frame Toby” -2
6) Pushing Daisies - “Oh Oh Oh It’s Magic” Not Aired
7) 30 Rock - “Gavin Volure" -1
8) Boston Legal - “Kill, Baby, Kill” -4
9) South Park - “The Ungroundable” +3
10) Kath and Kim - “Desire” -2
11) Chuck - “Chuck Versus the Fat Lady” -1
12) My Name Is Earl - “Nature's Game Show” -3
13) Family Guy - “Tales of Third Grade Nothing” -2
14) House - “Emancipation” -1
15) Eli Stone - “The Humanitarian” -1
16) American Dad - “Pulling Double Booty” -1
17) Heroes - “It’s Coming” +1
18) King of the Hill - “A Bill Full of Dollars” -2
19) The Simpsons - “Homer and Lisa Exchange” -2
20) Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles - “Complications” -1

The Wrestler

The trailer for the new Darren Aronofsky film “The Wrestler” is finally officially online. I’m a big Darren Aronofsky fan, I loved The Fountain even though most of my friends are pretty mixed about it. Although Aronofsky didn’t write The Wrester it still looks like a great film with a great performance from Mickey Rourke. I’m definitely looking forward to this one.

Baby G and Noddy

I was still living in Baltimore when Baby G was born this past February. While I was down there I purchased him a “Noddy” doll to give him when I came back to NJ. At the time the doll was much bigger than he was. Now he’s bigger than Noddy. Here’s a picture of Baby G and Noddy.

Baby G and Noddy

Favorite TV Shows of the week: November 9th to November 15th

1) It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia - “The Gang Gets Extreme: Home Makeover” +4
2) Entourage - “Seth Green Day” -1
3) The Office - “Business Trip” +1
4) Boston Legal - “Roe” -1
5) Dexter - “Easy As Pie” -3
6) 30 Rock - “The One with the Cast of "Night Court" +1
7) Fringe - “In Which We Meet Mr. Jones” Not Aired
8) Kath and Kim - “Jealousy” No Change
9) My Name Is Earl - “Earl and Joy's Anniversary” -2
10) Chuck - “Chuck Versus the Ex” Not Aired
11) Family Guy - “The Man With Two Brians” No Change
12) South Park - “Elementary School Musical” -3
13) House - “The Itch” Not Aired
14) Eli Stone - “Should I Stay Or Should I Go?” Not Aired
15) American Dad - “Escape From Pearl Bailey” -3
16) King of the Hill - “No Bobby Left Behind” -3
17) The Simpsons - “Dangerous Curves” -7
18) Heroes - “Villains” Not Aired
19) Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles - “Mr. Ferguson Is Ill Today” -5

SNL Digital Short: Everyone's A Critic


Making Art with Baby G

The following 2 pieces are my new artworks titled “Making Art with Baby G”. You can see higher quality versions of them under the artwork > digital section. Enjoy!


Top 5 Beautiful Ladies

Almost 3 years ago I had put up a top 12 list of my favorite sexiest animated characters. Today I’m giving you my top 5 real living breathing beautiful ladies, or as I say, my “to do” list.
Zooey Deschanel
Zoey Deschanel
Anna Friel
Anna Friel
Jenna Fischer
Jenna Fischer
Tina Fey
Tina Fey
Anne Hathaway
Anne Hathaway

and honorable mention of course goes to Scarlett Johanson and Natalie Portman. There’s a few others that I quite fancy, one of them being Judy Greer, she seems like a lot of fun, someone who I would want to spend all of my time with. All of these beautiful ladies are delicious, kinda like a bacon cheese burger. Mmmmmmm, tasty!

Who’s your favorite?

Caitlin Ryan Clothing Line

My friend Caitlin designed clothes for this video here. My friends Jess, Briners, Whitney and Q-Bert are the models and stars of the video. I don’t know the girl who filmed and edited the video but she’s very talented. The music in it is also great. Such a well done video, I find it very inspiring:


March Of The Ants

I was very disappointed in my steak last night at Arthur’s. Arthur’s Tavern had 4 locations. The closest one being in North Brunswick and 3 others further away in North Jersey. The North Brunswick one was the closest at 40 minutes, half the time to the other 3. Well, we found out yesterday that Arthur’s Tavern in North Brunswick is now Arthur’s Steakhouse and Pub. It doesn’t come close to what it was like when it was Arthur’s Tavern. Before it was a unique and delicious steak, now it’s just a steak, nothing special about it. It’s safe to say that I won’t be going back there anymore. It’s a shame that the other locations aren’t closer.

I just got back from doing some food shopping at Shop Rite. Among my usual items I also wanted to try some different things. I got McCann’s Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal. I wanted to get the McCann’s instant oatmeal but they only had the traditional in a can. I’ve been wanting to try it for a while so I’m pretty excited about it. Maybe I’ll order the packs of instant off the internet. Also, something that I’ve been wanting to try for a long time now was goat milk. I don’t drink milk. Cow’s milk I find gross, not to mention it being bad for you. I use milk in my Ovaltine but I rarely have it. I use vanilla soy milk in my cereal. So when I got home I poured myself a glass of goat’s milk. I enjoyed it. Tastes slightly different than cow’s milk but didn’t leave that slimy texture in your mouth afterwards like cow’s milk does. If it was cheaper I’d get it more often.

Now I have a question, how would the oatmeal or the Ovaltine be with goat’s milk?

Welcome to my new blog

Well, I think I figured out the new blog program. I’m using RapidWeaver. It’s pretty neat, took me a while to figure out the editing of CSS and HTML but I’m on my way. I still have a few problems but once I get stuff figured out I’m sure things will fall into place.

If you’ve been reading my old blog then you’ve noticed that I haven’t been leaving many personal updates other than my favorite TV shows of the week and the occasional SNL Digital Short. I’ve just been plain busy.

Let’s see, what have I been up to? I went out with the girl I met at Bryan and Keilynn’s wedding a couple of times. That was a lot of fun. Over the weekend I met up with Joe and Ayla for dinner in Philly and while I was there I met up with my friend Leslie from MICA. She showed me her place, which is pretty scary, I’ll have to visit again when my other MICA friends are in town. Other than that you can pretty much see me at Jo Jo’s Tavern every Monday night at 8. Although tonight I’m going to Arthur’s Tavern. I haven’t been there in a while, delicious steaks. I’ve also been maintaining the NASCAR iCalendars. I maintain both the Sprint Cup and the Nationwide Series calendars. You can see them in the section.File Sharing

What else is new? Well, the Philadelphia Phillies won the World Series. Barrack Obama was elected the next president. The Ravens are now 6 and 3 and Ryan Newman is still struggling.

That’s all for now. I hope to update my new blog on a more regular basis now that things work a bit more. Enjoy!

Test Entry

Still testing my new blog. The old blog has been archived by year and is viewable on the right.

New Blog

This is my new blog. I’ve archived all of the old posts and am attempting to integrate them into this blog. I have a feeling it won’t be as easy as it sounds.