Has it been this long?

How wrong is it that it took me GOOGLING MY OWN NAME before I re-discovered this blog. Wow, my own narcissism, is what brought me back.

Example of above mentioned narcissism...

I can’t deny that the past 7 years (and especially the past 2 1/2) have been interesting, if not downright scary at times. However, I am in a wonderful place, with a great company, and family that are genuinely excited about coming to Florida to live. For that…I am thankful.

I could go on and on about what has happened in my life since I last explored the blogosphere…about the experiences that life has given me, about realizing what is truly important, and how not to take the smallest things for granted. But instead:


Little Friskies...or I pluck the dog's eye out like Pai Mei taught me.

It’s good to be back, America…


Holy crap…

Hello, blogosphere…my old friend…

How long has it been? Quite a while, I guess. If you have been a regular follower of this blog (and if you are…why?) you’ll notice I have not posted a new one in quite some time.I wish I had a good reason for this…but I don’t. So……….deal with my laziness.

I’ll have a more detailed, and humorous post in the next day or two, so until then…enjoy this photo of the awesome power of birds.

My, my, my…California looks like a good option right about now.

It is icy outside. Very. To the point that the dogs (who are now confusing the words “carpet” and “toilet”) are not amused about having to go outside to do what dogs do. They…kind of hate me. Wonderful.

Too cute for wor...OHHH! GROSS!!!!!!!
Too cute for wor...OHHH! GROSS!!!!!!!

However, it could be worse. Right now, the East Coast is under the grip of evil.

No...the OTHER evil that is taking over the East Coast!

Evil weather. It’s making people a bit loopy. The Federal Government has shut down due to bad weather, which amazingly…the Obama Administration has not yet blamed on the previous administration.

The good news is that we get to see weather-folk really shine at times like this. I’m not talking about their prognostication skills, I mean…they actually, finally, have something to get EXCITED about!

Like…this guy.

Lovingly borrowed from Warming Glow and College Humor. They’re blog-a-riffic!

Going to California in 11 days…I may not come back.

Blog Therapy (Or: A day with my 8-year-old)

Well, I am back at it. Not working, per se, but back to blogging. It seems as if I have some…how you say…TIME on my hands, since I left Birmingham (and trust me, there is nothing more satisfying that having Birmingham in your rear-view mirror).   So, for right now, it’s either blog, or that list of “honey do’s” that is ever present on the counter. Paint? Do the laundry? Laundry Schamundry…I’d rather write.  At the moment, though…I am in the middle of one of my “honey do’s”. I am at the local Chevy dealership getting my wife’s SUV checked out. There seems to be a “SERVICE ENGINE SOON” light that keeps reappearing within hours of the last time we had had it looked at.


Believe me, if I knew anything at all about cars…I’d still be sitting here, waiting for someone wholly more qualified than I to fix it.  I’m pretty well aware of my limitations, and spending hours trying to figure out why the compression in the flux depostulator is 4% low is not my idea of how I want to kill time.  Besides, I am “car-illiterate”.  This means, essentially, that I am the black sheep of the Ballance clan.  Let’s put this into perspective: My father and brothers operate a racing team. You heard me….a racing-freakin’-team. Their (very expensive) hobby is getting a race car to reach the upper limits of its performance, over a ¼ mile, straight line, racetrack. My hobby…is making, and drinking, beer.  Can you see the disconnect?  I thought so…

There is something to be said for sitting in the waiting room at a car dealership. At this time of day…most people are working, except for those in “transition” (like me), and senior citizens. I have personally observed one gentleman, who may have been alive at the time of Grover Cleveland’s first inauguration, ask no less than 4 times to have the volume on the TV turned up.

Watch for elderly pickpockets...

It is now as loud as the front row at a Megadeth show…if only the Megadeth show was being simulcast on CNN.  I can easily hear everything on the television outside, here in the case enclosed “playroom”. To add to this equation, my youngest daughter decided that today would be the day that she regurgitated her entire breakfast and require a day off of school.  So, not only am I waiting at the dealership…but I am waiting in the “playroom” of the waiting room. A utopia of toys and distractions for any child aged 1 to 10. This is a welcome distraction…for an 8-year-old. Me being 42…not so much.  However, since she is in this room of bliss, I have the luxury of writing, while she goes to town on the Duplos (yes…she is “sick”, but miraculously well enough to create a fort).  However, I may have just pulled the ultimate “jerk” Dad move. I brought along a workbook of Second Grade math problems for her to work on, to which she is not happy.  After 20 minutes of joyous play and Duplo construction…she is now as sullen and depressed as a Massachusetts Democrat.  She has ceased all normal brain function…and is mindlessly tapping her pencil on the table.  Every 30-45 seconds, she looks over at me as if to say: “I used to love you…”.  Perhaps I am being a bit harsh with her…especially since she is now using the “I don’t feel good” excuse to try and get out of doing the math.  Funny, when she was building the Burj Dubai out of Duplos 20 minutes ago…she seemed just fine.  A picture of good health.  Now, she is apparently very near death, with a math book in front of her.

She is a great kid. Very smart, and compassionate about nature and animals. She is certainly the more “left-brained” member of our family. But, that also means, that mundane tasks like subtraction is not her primary focus. Her specialties lie in creating pieces of artwork that she asserts should sell for thousands of dollars, running a veterinarians office for her rocking horses, or using her Ninja skills to save China on our Playstation 3.  There may be some real world practicality to that. I often lay awake at night, in fear that we will be the victims of a home invasion…by the Yakuza. If so…my 8 year old has the talent to dispatch them promptly and return peace and calm to our home. So…in that instance…screw the Math book. Let’s go get the car…hurry home…and kill Ninjas.

Their ninja skills were no match for the dog, who thought they were chew toys.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

In my ample spare time (for now…going to rock again soon, you’d be insane not to hire me)…I have decided to decorate the house for Christmas. It’s a very special Holiday for the Ballance clan…however, since I DO have ample time, I may have overdone it just a bit. The Lovely Mrs. Ballance…was not amused.

On Dasher! On Dancer! On...PHASERS!
On Dasher! On Dancer! On...PHASERS!!

Santa…may need a bigger bag.

This story is NOT about John Daly…

Although, it would be HYSTERICAL if it were. Read on….and you’ll understand:

Courtesy of Fox News…Fair, and Ballanced.

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. —  Doug Barron, a 40-year-old journeyman who lost his tour card three years ago, became the first player to be suspended by the PGA Tour for testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance.

The American was immediately suspended for one year, the PGA Tour said Monday. He played eight full seasons on the tour, with his best finish a tie for third at the Byron Nelson Championship in 2006.

“I would like to apologize for any negative perception of the tour of its players resulting from my suspension,” Barron said in a statement released by the tour. “I want my fellow tour members and the fans to know that I did not intend to gain an unfair competitive advantage or enhance my performance while on tour.”

The tour announced the suspension about two hours before the World Golf Hall of Fame induction ceremony. The tour said it would have no further comment, and Barron’s agent did not immediately return a call.

Under its doping policy, the tour announces a suspension but does not disclose what substance a player used. The tour did not start random testing until July 2008, which includes its second-tier Nationwide Tour.

Barron played a full Nationwide schedule last year, making only five cuts in 17 starts to earn $33,446. He played four times on the Nationwide Tour this year, and his lone PGA Tour start came at the St. Jude Classic, where he missed the cut.

The last time Barron made news was in 2006 at what is now the Transitions Championship outside Tampa, Florida, where he removed his shirt to play a shot out of the water on the 16th hole at Innisbrook. He exposed an ample belly on television, drawing jokes from players.

Barron’s most recent tournament was in September at the Mexico Open, co-sanctioned by the Nationwide Tour, where he missed the cut.


Okay, let’s think about this…I can see other sports having this problem, but GOLF??????????????

The only performance enhancing substance in Golf….comes on the Drink cart.  You get 4 or 5 Heineken’s in me, and I’m Phil Mickelson (Moobs and all).

I'm too sexy for my shirt...
I'm...too sexy for my shirt.

I’d say something about Tiger here…but he just might decide to kick my ass…

Augusta is hosting...the GUN show!


I am NOT cool with this…

As a Weather Channel junkie, this is unacceptable.

Weather Channel To Air Movies For First Time

Associated Press, Oct 20 2009, 3:25 PM ET

NEW YORK (AP) — The Weather Channel plans to show movies for the first time in its 27-year history.

First up? “The Perfect Storm.”

The network has slipped longer programming into its constantly rotating forecasts in recent years. But over a four-week period starting the night before Halloween, the cable network will try Friday night movies.

Its managers figured the George Clooney movie about a horrific storm off the New England coast would be a good first choice – particularly since it’s airing on the 18th anniversary of the actual event.


Uhhhhhhh, no. If I don’t get my weather on the 8’s. I’m calling the cable company. This is very uncool. Heck, they’re even going to show “Misery” with Kathy Bates…since snow plays a role in the story. That’s no different that showing “Cast Away” because the plane goes down in a storm.  But then again, what is the difference between this, and ESPN Classic showing “Caddyshack”…not much.

I need my fix of Jim Cantore standing on a beach fighting 190 mile an hour winds as Hurricane Emelianodiegocastaneda rolls in… I blame NBC for this, since this would never have happened before they bought the network. What’s next? Leno doing “Headlines” with a weather theme? Or the Travel Channel showing “Ocean’s Eleven” because it revolves arond Las Vegas? Actually…don’t have a problem with that one.

If the Weather Channel shows movies…the terrorists win.