Grass Never Sleeps

Happy September!
Did the Today show run my segment today? I never got a message from them. Anybody see it?

We didn’t do a Screen Savers last night to give everybody a head start on the three day weekend. Nice idea, except nobody told me until yesterday. Harumph.

I had Giants tickets for the evening, so I couldn’t really go home. Fortunately, Stacey Tisdale was throwing a party at the brew pub around the corner, so I found something to do in the hours between TechLive and the ball game. Stacey, one of our best anchors on TechLive, is going back to her home in NYC to anchor the 4-5p hour from there. Too bad, I always enjoyed working with her. She was one of the few people who would even tolerate me. Lately the rotato hosts haven’t even been showing up and I’ve had to anchor alone. Is it something I said?

After many toasts, I wobbled over to Paul Block’s (my Executive Producer on The Screen Savers) and from there to the ballpark to watch a somnolent Giants team give up five runs in the first inning to the cellar-dwelling Colorado Rockies. The Giants bats didn’t really wake up until the 8th, when they gained two runs back on a massive shot into the SF Bay by Barry Bonds (his 57th HR for the season), but it wasn’t enough to save that dog of a game.

It was all I could do to keep my eyes open on the way home. Fortunately I had a pretty gripping book on tape to listen to: Michael Crichton’s Timeline. The reader is terrible, but the story is interesting. I’ve always enjoyed time travel stories. It’s not as good as Jack Finney’s Time and Again but it kept me awake.

Speaking of books, I just finished one of the best biographies I’ve ever read, David McCullough’s new John Adams. Not only is it beautifully written, but it’s a very moving and inspiring story. Adams has been overshadowed by the legends of Washington, Jefferson, and Franklin, but in many ways he was the greatest of the four. And his wife, Abigail, was a powerhouse who was in every way his equal. Truly a wonderful read.

I have some weed whacking to do today – forget rust grass never sleeps. Tomorrow the whole family is going to see Stomp and Monday it’s a cookout for our friends – most of whom haven’t seen the new house yet. My old Weber has fallen apart so I think I’ll buy a new grill today. I know it’s sacrilige – man was meant to use lighter fluid – but I’m thinking of a gas grill. Consumer Reports likes the Weber Summit 450 at over $2,000, but maybe I can find something a little cheaper! Got any recommendations?

24 Replies to “Grass Never Sleeps”

  1. Tom: McCullough quotes the letters extensively, also Adams’s own journals, and his correspondence with Jefferson. I think that’s one of the reasons I really liked the book: heavy reliance on source materials with beautiful connecting prose.

  2. I got a Weber Genesis series Leo and it’s great. Don’t remember how much but I can assure you it was under $2000! I think like $500 but it’s probably 2 or 3 years old now.

  3. I hope you went to Lefty O’Doul’s, Leo. When I was in SFO last year I couldn’t get out of that place. Actually I went from there to a Giants game and caught another Giants game two weeks ago when I was in Montreal. There they scored five runs in the first, didn’t give them up.

  4. Leo, you should look into the letters between John and Abigail Adams. Some pretty remarkable content and she was every bit the equal of her husband.
    Have a great holiday weekend and see you on the Tube on Tuesday!

  5. Leo,
    _Timeline_ is essentially a fairly poor rip-off of Connie Willis’ _The Doomsday Book_
    If you liked _Timeline_, you’ll love _The Doomsday Book_.

  6. I saw the word “Timeline” and nearly jumped out of my skin. That’s one of my all-time favorite books. The one that got me hooked on quantum physics. Thoroughly excellent book, surprising — for me — ending. FINISH IT, LEO!

  7. Hey Leo,
    Saw a really nice all stainless gas model at Home Depot for around $700. Waiting this long in the season for a grill is a good thing. It’s time for inventory clearance!
    Brian

  8. Why spend 2K on a grill when you could invite Patrick over? I’m sure he could find something lying around to explode into flames! Just kidding, Have a wonderful holiday.

  9. Hey Leo! You deserve a 3 day weekend! If you need some anchors for Tech Live, I’d be glad to give it a shot! Anyway, about the Grill…you’re right..Lighter fluid and charcoal is the best way to fir it up. The taste you get from a charcoal grill just adds so much to the BBQ experience. But technology always gets the best of us, I guess. That’s why we’re computer geeks, right? I dunno..If I could afford 2 grand for a grill, I’d probably buy one..but Just the same, you could spend $200 for a pretty much top of the line brand new Weber, and have $1800 left for…more Computer stuff!!!!! That’s my opinion.

  10. You stopped playing Max Payne long enough to read the David McCullough bio of Adams? That’s impressive. :^)
    I love the American Experience on PBS, McCullough hosts that show (or used to) and he is great, C-Span also showed his speech at the National Press Club recently, he is a great speaker as well as a great writer.
    One of my favorite shows on Nova was one McCullough did called, “A Man, A Plan, A Canal, Panama.” Besides being a famous palindrome, this show, presented by McCullough and based on his book, was one of the best documentaries I’ve ever seen, mostly I say that because he took a subject I was not the least bit interested in, and he made the story absolutely fascinating. I recommend it if you ever get near a library that has the Nova shows on tape.

  11. Hi Leo,
    I got a regular CharBroil gas grill from the ol’ Costco for about $250 that does the job just fine. You can get them pre-assembled, but I thought I would show off my manliness and build it myself. It’s a 7-beer project, so you might want to save some time and just spend the extra $ to have someone else assemble. Which reminds me – I have to get some more propane from the local Hank Hill.
    Happy Labor Day weekend. Besides grilling, I have a whole week’s worth of Screen Savers to plow through on the Tivo. Kick ***.
    pjk

  12. A blog powered by greymatter, LOL! Sorry, this is what i get for being Blogger user. Anyways…
    As for the grills, if you can afford to stick with the charcoal, do it. As for lighting, i’ve never used lighter fluid. Leaves a funny taste on the food from what i’ve experienced. I’ve always used a charcoal chimney to light my charcoal. All it takes is a couple of sheets of news paper to get it going, and in 10-15 minutes, charcoal ready to go. Best part is, it can either be made, or bought for less than 20$.
    Modelwise, check out the performer for a seriously sweet setup. Gas assisted charcoal lighting. A definate luxury, but hey, it’s all about impressing the friends over for a BBQ. But then if you happen to be looking to cook for a crowd, look into the Ranch Kettle Cooker. OMG. It’s friggin beautiful man. 19 cornish game-hens can fit on there at a time. *let’s out a manly grunt of approval*
    Weber’s homepage is pretty awesome for all sorts of stuff. At every turn, there’s tips that pop-up to help out the n00b. Plus they have this cool comparison feature. Definately check it out.
    Decay

  13. I have a good ol’ propane-fueled grill, and everything comes out wonderfully. I can make a mean London Broil on it. :o)
    Leo’s post has me wondering what an overserved Leo is like. With Leo’s personality (as I see it), I doubt he’s a “mean drunk.” I bet Leo is one of those “I love you, man” kind of guys.
    I’ll be having a BBQ here Monday, but I don’t really have anyone to invite … anyone in Southern California feel like coming to a BBQ? :oD
    Have a great weekend, Leo. My best to the family!

  14. It sounds like you have a good weekend going on here, Leo. Stomp is awesome, however you do know that the kids are going to head straight for the pots and pans when you get home, right? 😉 We’ll check to see if you have any facial tics on Tuesday.
    I’m betting a slightly brined Leo is even funnier and wigglier than usual. A “life of the party” kinda guy. And just maybe . . . some table dancing? 😀
    Smooches without Labor,
    Jeannette

  15. Who needs ligher fluid, that is why God invented fast lighting charcoal. We just went back to a charcoal grill after our gas one went kaput. I had forgotten how much better charcoal grilled tastes over gas. In my opinion forget gas. It is a little faster but not near as flavorful.
    I read Time and Again about 15 years ago. Great book. I still have it around here somewhere. I will have to get it out and read it again.
    AMC showed “Time Machine” with Rod Taylor not long ago. Pretty good graphics for 1960 and a great story too. I remember seeing it as a child and wanting one of my own.
    I hope everyone has a great Labor Day!

  16. Re: the debate over charcoal vs. gas –
    I have owned about 3 or 4 charcoal grills over the years and 3 gas grills as well. Charcoal grills do impart a distinctive flavor to food, but nothing that can not be duplicated on gas. The important time is to spend time with preparation and to cook a lot so you know what you are doing. (Much like everything else in life!) I spent a whopping $300.00 in my current grill at Walmart and it is the most versatile one i have ever owned. Have done everything from stir-fried chineese in a wok, to roasted chicken, to the more usual steak/burger/hot dog fare. Good luck which ever way you go Leo!

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