Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Coming to Eldersburg: Grilled Cheese and Company

I don't usually make it over to the Johnsville Station much, except for the annual soccer parties at Ledo's for the teams I coach. I got wind that the former Scoops Ice Cream store was going to be occupied by The Grilled Cheese and Company, whose website uses the clever as their website.

I've never heard of this place, but I looked at the menu and apparently they sell grilled cheese sandwiches. And these grilled cheese sandwhiches cost $5 and up. I think that's going to be a hard sell. Why would you want to spend that much money for a cheese sandwich slopped with butter and fried? Sure it's good, but $5??? That'd be like selling donuts for $3 each. The Grilled Cheese and Company also has other make and models that sell for upwards of $8. I'm sure I'll try it once to satisfy my curiosity.

And when you think of Johnsville Station, do you start humming "Smokin' in the Boys' Room" by Brownsville Station? You will now!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Moved in Eldersburg: Weichert Realtors

As stated in my previous post, the former Cuts and former BDG Entrepreneurial Services location is now occupied by Weichert Realtors Property Concepts. I'm not sure what the 'property concepts' means. Perhaps they're helping to determine alternate uses for your properties. It's always good to "think outside the cliché".

There are a lot of properties that have closed in Eldersburg in the last year. If you follow this blog you see a lot of evidence of this. So it's nice to see some of the closed properties being occupied. I just hope they have an open order for a new sign because the one they have isn't very good. And it doesn't look very permanent.

Weichert is a national chain and I'm pretty sure that they were somewhere else in Eldersburg. If you know, please tell me. I'm curiously stupid like that.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Gone From Eldersburg: Curves

Curves, the little sister of the former Cuts franchise, one of which was located at the former BDG Entrepreneurial Services, now occupied by the current Weichert Group, is now closed. The Eldersburg Curves franchise was located in the shopping plaza with Serra Brothers and Captain Dan's, though I don't know the name of the shopping plaza. It also has the store front that says NASCAR, which hasn't been a NASCAR store for years.

If I'm not mistaken, the current former Curves location was formerly a video store, one that some local people protested because they had adult content. Censorship - it can be your friend!

So ladies, you now need to find a new place to work on your curves. You're more than welcome to use my basement.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Toys For Grown-ups

How awesome is this?!!! I found this on the Cars\Failblog. Do I need to mention that not only did I never have a Green Machine, but I never even got a Big Wheel. My brother and sister both had one. But I never got one. I wonder if Martin O'Malley ever had a Green Machine.

Friday, March 25, 2011

South Carroll Community Showcase - Saturday 26th

Be sure to stop by Century High School before you drag your kids to baseball and softball practice on Saturday. The South Carroll Business Association is having the annual Community Showcase, though it was previously named the Expo. You'll get to meet some local businesses that still exist and get free samples and schwag. And there will be things for the kids, too, such as face-painting. It's a good event. Think local!

Restaurant Fund Raiser for ORMS @ Qdoba

If you're from Eldersburg, you know that ORMS is Oklahoma Road Middle School, which I'm sure you'll agree is a really stupid name for a school. Why not just call it Oklahoma Middle School? Is the road really that necessary?

Anyway, come out to Qdoba in Eldersburg on Tuesday March 29th from 5pm until 8pm. Qdoba will donate 15% of the proceeds to the ORMS PTA.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Eldersburg Litter - 3.27.11 ???

If you've driven around Eldersburg this week you'll notice the sign weeds on every corner of town. Mixed among the Long & Foster and Coldwell Banker realtor signs is this sign that reads: 3.27.11 and

My curiousity got the best of me, so I looked it up. It's part of Freedom Church, which I believe is headquartered in the derelict Carrolltowne Center. I suspect they're having an animal sacrifice or something at Liberty High School on March 27th. I wonder what God thinks about sign pollution. If I'm not mistaken, I think Moses was carrying an extra tablet down from Mount Sinai and he dropped it. But unbeknownst to most people was an 11th Commandment that read:

Though shall not pollute thy town with unauthorized signs.

Seen In Eldersburg....

I thought I had posted this, but couldn't find it. During my travels around town I was at the intersection of Route 32 and Route 26 when this monstrosity went by. I think it might by a reinforced container that can hold all of Martin O'Malley's hot air, but I'm not totally sure. What do you think it is?

Gone From Eldersburg: Thai Classic

I never quite understood this restaurant in the Oklahoma Shopping Center on Liberty Road. You know the one - next to McDonald's? I've lived in Eldersburg since 1999 and the Thai Classic rarely ever had any cars there, yet it remained in business for nearly 11 years. I am convinced that the store was a front for a money laundering operation. Or perhaps it was the headquarters for the Eldersburg mafia, though others contend that the Eldersburg mafia is run out of the Freedom Optimist Hall.

I only visited Thai Classic once and I was not impressed. My wife got a boat of sushi and it was just average. I got Pad Thai (doesn't everyone?). Eh....

Well, now it's closed. So if you're looking for a good location to open a restaurant....or a place to headquarter your very own mafia, contact the owners of the Oklahoma Shopping Center!

The Freedom Optimist Hall:

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Teahcer Conferences at Oklahoma Road Middle School

That is not a typo on my part. The headline from the Alert Message that I received actually says:


If you follow Fail Blog, this would be a FAIL. Or is it a FALI? Hello! You're a school. You should spell everything correctly in all communications that are distributed. It shows poorly on the school. And ORMS is a Blue Ribbon school? Perhaps that only applies to the students.

Monday, March 21, 2011

New Playgrond at Carrolltowne Elementary School

How often does the opening of a new playground grab the attention of a local news station? We received an email from Eldersburg's Carrolltowne Elementary School Principal Terry Ball that at 12:30 today WMAR ABC News Channel 2 (who knew they still did news???) will be covering the ribbon-cutting event.

I haven't watched news on Channel 2 since Sally Thorner was there. What was that, 25 years ago? From what I recall Channel 2 is solidly in last place in the Baltimore news market. I guess this ribbon-cutting event will be part of their feel-good segment, which usually follows the 30 minute coverage of the daily wrath of shootings, murders, robberies, and such in Baltimore.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Martin O'Malley - the Duplicitous Two-Headed Union Champion

Kudos to my college roommate Squirrel for pointing this out to me. Extra kudos because he lives in North Carolina.

Does anyone find it ironic \ funny \ embarrassing \ etc that Maryland Governor, the liberal extremist humanitarian champion of the people Martin O'Mally criticized Republican Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker for his approach to trimming his state's massive budget problem, only to present similar offerings to the Maryland General Assembly, drawing thousands of union protesters to Annapolis to picket? I know. You liberals will say, "Oh, this is different." Whatever. You know I'm right.

As you may know, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker proposed limiting the states' union collective bargaining abilities. Like most states, Wisconsin currently has a structural deficit of several billion dollars. If you attended a Baltimore City public school, a structural deficit is when you have obligations to fund certain programs, but do not have the revenue stream to fund them. So, for example, let's say the economy goes to the crapper and hundreds of thousands of people are unemployed in your state (though most likely not state employees). With less people working there is less income tax revenue. And with more people unemployed, they're obviously spending less money, thus resulting in less tax revenue. This is the money that the state relies on to function.

Now, where is the money going? The unions across the country have successfully signed lucrative contracts with the different state agencies to give their union paying dues members huge pensions, high salaries, and healthcare plans that are funded mostly by the state, not the employees - unlike the rest of us who work in the for-profit world. Now the states can't afford to pay them.

There are options. The state could implement massive tax increases. But that's not popular. And most people would probably agree that the unions are abusing the system. So taking away some of their kitty is probably more popular.

So as you can see, Governor Walker of Wisconsin is in a precarious position. But that didn't stop Maryland Governor Marty O'Malley from attacking him. The future pretty-boy Presidential hopeful said that Walker's actions, "...represents a recipe for failure and ill will..."

Then on Monday, Annapolis was choked full of union members protesting O'Malley's proposals for dealing with Maryland's own structural deficit. According to the Washington Post, Maryland has $19 billion (BILLION) in unfunded pension liabilities and $16 BILLION in retiree health benefits. That's a lot of cussin' money!

After stripping the state education budget of $94 million, O'Malley is now attacking unions with his proposals of cutting said pensions and retiree health benefits.

So while O'Malley is busy nationally painting his personal Dorian Gray picture for his Presidential run, he's locally screwing Marylanders with the exact same tactics that he criticizes Republicans for doing. That, my friends, is the definition of a hypocrite.

Eludius - the Blood Donor

Martin O'Malley - do you donate blood? I never see you bragging about donating blood. I hear you bragging all the time, though. But never about donating blood.

I donated blood today. I called today to learn how many times I've donated in my lifetime. I know I've donated twice with the Carolina Blood Bank, but the remainder of the donation are through the Red Cross.

Chris, the friendly fella at the Red Cross customer service center, said that I've donated 39 times. However, he said the records only go back to 1999. I know that I donated once as a senior in high school to help my friend Tom with his Eagle Scout project. I donated a couple times while at Harford Community College. I donated on the day the Alfred Murah building was bombed in Oklahoma City in 1995 while I worked at the VISA Assistance Center in Owings Mills. And I know I donated several times at American Amalgamated Corrugated Conglomerate of America prior to 1999.

So by estimation, I've donated 47 times. Not too bad. I know there are others that have donated much more. I've always felt obligated to donate blood. It's easy to do and I've never had any problems. But now that my daughter has leukemia and has needed blood and platelets I feel even more dedicated - to the point where I'm going around harassing other people to donate. And I just calculated it - a donation is roughly 1 pint of blood. 47 pints is 5.875 gallons. I've donated almost 6 gallons of blood in my lifetime! Hokey-smoke, Bullwinkle!

Funniest donation story - was actually when I donated the day of the attack in Oklahoma City. There was a young girl donating in the chair across from me. She didn't look too good. Sort of gray in the face. You could tell by her eyes that she was mentally all over the place as the blood drained from her body.

The phlebotomist (people who take your blood) kept asking the girl if she felt okay. The girl said yes. I don't even have an education in phlebotomy and I could tell she wasn't okay. Nonetheless when she finished they let her get up and instructed her to walk over to the table to get some juice and cookies. She took two steps then started staggering to one side until she was doing a face-plant on the linoleum. Yes, that's probably not too funny. But it is. They laid her down, got her fluids and she was eventually okay. But, duh, I knew she was going to pass out.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Who is Supporting Team Payton?

I've been absolutely amazed at the generosity of people since we started Team Payton to benefit The Believe in Tomorrow Foundation. So many people have joined to run or walk while dozens of others have made generous donations.

I decided to do an analysis to breakdown who is giving.

I went to St. Anthony's from 1978 - 1986. The school was located on Frankfort Avenue in East Baltimore, but sadly no longer exists. 6 of my friends from St. Anthony's have donated or are running.

After one of our neighbors was murdered in 1986 when we lived in Rosedale, my parents decided it was time to get out of the ghetto. A week after I graduated from St. Anthony's from the 8th grade we high-tailed it to Bel Air up in Harford County. I attended Bel Air High School from 1986 - 1990. Yes, we were the first class to graduate in the 90's, which obviously made us the coolest class EVER. 4 of my friends from high school are participating in the event.

After high school I did a two-year rotation at Harford Community College where I met my wife. So she counts from this era. After HCC I transferred to Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina. One of my good friends from Winthrop has made a generous donation.

I worked a couple of jobs after college - first at the Visa Assistance Center in Owings Mills for a few months, but then left when I was offered a lucrative job at the now-defunct Carr Lowrey Glass Company in Westport, one of the many ghettos in Baltimore City (I was making $20,000 per year to start!!!). After I was happily laid off from that job, I got started at American Amalgamated Corrugated Conglomerates of America, where I've successfully moved up the ladder up to the gluing and amalgating department.

9 of my coworkers are running in the race. Another 27 have made donations. I work with some wonderful people.

In 1999 my wife and I moved from Bel Air to Eldersburg. We have rockin' neighbors who are the kindest, most generous people we've met. Maybe that means we haven't met that many people. Or we really are that lucky. 7 of our friends and neighbors are running, walking, or have made donations (and a few are walking AND have donated money!).

And there are the people I don't even know. I suspect they are friends of friends, but to think that you would help take up a cause for people you don't even know, what remarkable people! I didn't count, but I would estimate about 50 people we don't know have either signed up for race day or have made donations. To those of you we don't know or don't know yet - thank you!

Our family is helping, too. My niece is actually the 4th largest individual fund raisers thus far. My sister-in-law, my nephew, my niece, and her boyfriend are all participating. And 2 of my wife's cousins and her aunt and uncle have donated.

We have several families from my children's sports teams that have donated. And one of our best family friends from Church is on board. We were informed that the Sunday School project for this month is Team Payton. So we expect a lot of participation from them.

I still have several friends that keep promising that they will sign up.

Who hasn't signed up? Martin O'Malley hasn't signed up. Martin O'Malley - you are officially invited to sign up to run with us or make a donation to our team. If you do so, I promise to be nice to you for an entire week! Show some love, Gov!

If I've convinced you to sign up or make a donation, the CLICK HERE.

Eat at Chili's in Eldersburg Tonight!

If you're looking to go out to dinner tonight and would like to support a good cause, then eat at Chili's in Eldersburg tonight. Ten percent of all sales will be going to The American Cancer Society, TEAM T.O.W.E.L.

I don't know who is on TEAM T.O.W.E.L., but it came from a friend, so that's good enough for me. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Port to Fort 6K - Believe in Tomorrow

As you read recently, my family received the use of a condo in Ocean City, compliments of the Believe in Tomorrow Foundation.

The Believe in Tomorrow Foundation provides hospital and respite housing to families with critically ill children. It was a great get-away for us as we prepared for Payton's next round of chemo.

Her current treatment is 59 days long. We're on day 9. It's been up and down. This morning she's in a great mood. She spent most of yesterday lying on the couch feeling terrible. So this morning we're appreciating her good mood and positive health.

On April 10th, Believe in Tomorrow is sponsoring the Port to Fort 6K in Baltimore. It runs from Key Highway to Fort McHenry and back (I think). One of our dear friends created Team Payton to help raise money for them. As of this morning we have 42 team members and have raised $4,911. Our goal was $5,000, but since we're so close to it, I'm officially making it $10,000. But if we raise $1 million, I won't be upset.

If you are planning to run the event or would like to run the event, you can join by clicking on Team Payton. You can also walk. If you just want to donate money to the cause, select any one of our team members and make a donation. We invite friends, family, neighbors, and strangers to join us. As I scroll through the list of donors and team members, there are many names that I do not know. There are many people in our lives that have hearts of gold.

Read some of the testimonials from some of the other families. Many are very sad. Some families have lost children and despite the loss, they are still giving back to this wonderful organization. Others are celebrating medical achievements.

People always ask what they can do for us. Well, here's your chance! Thank you.

Monday, March 07, 2011

As Seen in Ocean City

I take a lot of pictures when I go on vacation and the majority of them sit on my portable harddrive never to be seen again. So I am posting some of them that I thought were clever or mentionable.

Any guy that's every been caught with a hidden Playboy will be able to put some context into this funny magnet. And yes, I did read them for the articles......and the pictures.

My daughter actually bought this one for her locker in middle school. I thought it was funny.

This shirt required my son to ask me what it meant. Uh....go ask your mother. Additionally, Apu, the shopkeeper, assured me that this shirt met all the required copyright laws for logo usage.

I don't remember Ocean City being this vulgar when I was growing up. Is this a lessening of the moral standards of our society, or has Maryland embraced the in-your-face MTV ghetto culture?

There is no way anyone would have been allowed to open a store with this name back in the old days when Ocean City was considered a family resort.

One of the great things about Ocean City, Maryland is that if you need a $5 bathing suit or a $2 pair of sunglasses, never fear. You can get it at any one of the 5,000 Sunsations locations.

There's this one....

And this one....

And this one...

And this one...

If you own a store in Ocean City, Maryland and it goes out of business you can bet money that a Sunsations will take its place.

And if you need chocolate, there are the 390 Candy Kitchen locations.

Do you remember the Four Yorkshiremen? It's hysterical. I recommend you watch it. I'm modifying this a bit. "There were a hundred and twenty-seven of us living in a trashcan in the middle of the road."

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Martin O'Malley: Nepotism is Our Friend. And Relative.

Everyone who has ever held a real job knows that nepotism is bad. If you're a Baltimore City public school graduate, you're probably asking, 'what is nepotism?'

Nepotism is granting favors to relatives or friends regardless of merit. In most cases, situations of nepotism would be severely criticized. It should not be tolerated. But it's an entirely different situation here in Maryland. Especially with the Democratic Party.

According to the Daily Record, on February 18th, Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley re-appointed his wife Katie O'Malley to a 2nd term as a Baltimore District Court Judge.

Isn't that something that Tony Brown could have done? Is there no conflict of interest in appointing your wife to a position of power, regardless of her qualifications? This isn't illegal??? I'm not questioning her ability to serve that position. Most likely she deserves it. It just should be someone else doing the appointing.

Then, according to Robert Lang on, on March 4th, Martin O'Malley nominated his brother Peter to be the next chairman of the Maryland Democratic Party.

It's bad enough that Katie O'Malley is the daughter of former Lt. Governor and former Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. Now we have an O'Malley as Governor. An O'Malley as a Baltimore District Court Judge, and will soon have an O'Malley as the chairman of the Maryland Democratic Party.

Is this the modern Kennedy family? This is the political mafia at its finest.

Imagine if the Republican Party had done the same thing. You KNOW the liberal press and the Democrats would be going ballistic. Instead, they sit quietly on the sidelines blissfully nodding their heads in agreement. Remember the old Bugs Bunny cartoon with Mugsy and Rocky? This is the Democratic Party in Maryland. Sitting around saying, "Okay, boss."

When I become rule of the world, my wife will become Czar of Family Care, my father will be the Czar of Public Policy, my mother the Czar of Healthcare, my brother will be he Czar of Public Works, my sister will be the Czar of Information Technology, and I'll let my kids choose what they want to do. And you'll like it. Because I'm in charge.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Gone From Eldersburg: Pete's Cycle

I just noticed this last week and couldn't believe it. Pete's Cycle, which I think may have been the only place in Carroll County to buy a motorcycle, is now closed. Is there another place?

When we moved to Eldersburg in 1999 the place was basically a house with a showroom in the front porch. Soon after that they expanded and built a warehouse around the house. It's an odd building because there really isn't any parking and only one small window in the front. It doesn't appear to be a place where you'd go and buy something.

In the rear of the property are a bunch of old sheds. I suppose the property could be renovated by removing the sheds and creating parking and opening up the facility to include some windows.

While growing up as a kid I remember going to the Pete's Cycle with my dad. I think that was on Joppa Road between Loch Raven Boulevard and the I-695 overpass. We later moved to Bel Air and there was a Pete's Cycle there, as well. There I bought my first 10 speed, a Schwinn with the awesome curl-around handlebars, but with a spongy grip. I saved my allowance for a long time to buy that bike. Soon after that my parents or grandparents bought my brother and sister their own 10-speeds. Lesson learned for my siblings - let the older brother blow his money, then we'll get one, too! But I digress.

Anyway, Pete's Cycle in Eldersburg is now gone with what is seeming to be a lot of things in town. Will the recession ever end? Martin O'Malley - why aren't you coming to our rescue???

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