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Dome Pondering – 2011 Year in Review

Welcome to the Dome Pondering Year in Review, 2011 edition! Much like every completed calendar year (Dome Pondering - Year in Review 2010), the DP commemorates and reflects while celebrating the upcoming new year with the DP Year in Review - this blog's biggest post of the year. 
The completion of 2011 marks yet another successful and exciting year for Dome Pondering. With this post, we've reached a full Major League Baseball season worth of posts for the year, 162, which is a new record. Also, the DP has seen a growth in hits, visitors, feedback and overall interest more so than any other year. Not only have we been mentioned on 9.24, which DP devotees are familiar with, but we have been mentioned on 1050 ESPN radio during the Rucco and Lundberg Show this year. It's been a big year, and hopefully, 2012 will be even bigger. Thank you for your continued support, feedback, and overall interest. Hopefully, you have enjoyed the past year as much as I have, and I look forward …

Dome Pondering Movie Review: The Company Men (2010)

What is it about?
Three very different men deal with the ramifications and impact on their lives after they lose their jobs during corporate downsizing.
Who is in it? 
Ben Affleck - Bobby Walker
Tommy Lee Jones - Gene McClary
Chris Cooper - Phil Woodward

Five Keys To Knicks Season 2011-2012

And we are back! Quite honestly, I didn't think we'd have NBA basketball this year. However, the sheer voice of my tag team partner in the morning urgently waking me up to the beautiful words of, "Heeeyyy, the NBA just announced they agreed to a deal, there is going to be a season", was a Christmas gift come early. Ahhh, like music to my ears. No offense to college basketball, which I do enjoy, and the National Hockey League, which still failed to grab my attention with no opportunity better than having an NBA lockout, but the NBA is my winter focus. When Roger Hornsby answered the question of what he does in the Winter when there is no baseball with the slight quip that he stares out the window and waits for Spring, I can understand and second that sentiment. Except, unlike Mr. Hornsby, I can't stare outside that long waiting for Spring, and the NBA gets me there much quicker, especially my oh so beloved New York Knicks.

Interracing: A Look At The Torch Interracial Couples Carry Today

In many ways, I've been very blessed in my life. Amongst many of them, is the city I grew up in - New York City - more specifically Brooklyn, NY. A borough, which stands alone at roughly over 2.5M people, has the ability to become the fourth largest city in the nation if separated from NYC. It is a city that is filled with every person, from every walk of life. A blend, mix, and "melting pot" if you will, that I was fortunate enough to be around everyday. 
Growing up I had friends of all backgrounds. White, black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, Middle-Eastern, tall, short, fat, skinny, athletic, quiet, introvert, extrovert, Irish, Italian, Russian, Haitian, and the list can go on and on. We played together, and as kids do, we had our squabbles and feuds over block supremacy in the neighborhood, over boys, over girls, and just about all the other ridiculous things/drama kids and teenagers fight over. Yet, through it all, that difference never quite phase…

2011 Bucket List - #15 Create A Film/Movie/Short Clip

Keeping in line with the December spirit of completing these 2011 Bucket List tasks, yours truly has knocked off another one. This time, it is #15 - Create a film/movie/short clip. With very little time, and very little ambition (necessary looking to create the next blockbuster film) yours truly set out in the world of Windows Movie Maker to create a slideshow that is not only somewhat respectable, but reflective as well.
There is not much that I can give away on the substance, design, or formation of the video, other than it is connected to the biggest DP post of the year, the Dome Pondering Year In Review. However, I will say that I have dabbled in Windows Movie Maker in the past, once making a goofy slideshow for the tag team partner on Valentine's day, and it is something I find myself having a lot of fun with. Moving forward, I see videos becoming a larger part of the DP. Video blogs? Maybe. Video packages ala UFC and WWE? If I only had the ability to do that. Nonetheless, …

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Fast Five (2011)

What is it about?
Dominic and the crew find themselves on the run again from a Brazilian mob and U.S. federal agents as they attempt to pull of one last job to secure their future freedom.
Who is in it?
Vin Diesel - Dominic Toretto
Paul Walker - Brian O'Conner
Jordana Brewster - Mia Toretto
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson - Lou Hobbs

2011 Bucket List #52 - Attend a Broadway Show

For a professional wrestling enthusiast like myself (which is still an understatement), the art of entertainment and performing on the big stage is a form that I greatly appreciate and understand. While I do understand that pro wrestling is indeed scripted (yet, not fake), I am still told this message by every individual who becomes aware that I am a fan, as if it were some sort of secret wrestling fans have been closed out on for years. Nonetheless, part of my love for wrestling is the theatrical part. I simply love the way it tells a story in the ring, as well as out of the ring. 
Due to this affection of storytelling, I've managed to enjoy various plays and theatrical performances throughout my life. I understand that it isn't something most guys enjoy, but oddly enough, maybe because of the similarities to pro wrestling, it is an art that I enjoy. The theater is an atmosphere where viewers can have a live experience that removes them from reality, entertains, and in some …

The Albert Pujols $hakeout

$254 Million for 10 years.

It's not everyday someone receives a contract as enormous as that one - then again, it's not everyday a player the caliber of Albert Pujols comes around.

Upon hearing the news that Albert Pujols will somehow take his talents to Long Beach, or some beach near Anaheim, it issued a specific type of feeling that we've seen and felt before. It seemed almost like a cross between Alex Rodriguez's blockbuster signing with Texas ten years ago, and the colossal trainwreck that was "The Decision" just last year.

How can a man so beloved and revered in St. Louis pack up and head west to play for a team that no one had on the radar as a possible destination?

Pujols was guaranteed a statue in front of New Busch Stadium when his playing days were over.

Not very likely now.

2011 Bucket List - #50 Attend Five Events For The Year

It's been said quite enough here at the DP that this year projected as quite a busy year for yours truly. From all of the planning, searching, and researching, it seemed like a free day on my personal calendar came around every month or so. With that it mind, the 2011 Bucket List was tailored to keep me motivated and to not only go beyond, but maintain as well. Every year, we all attend several events that interest us. As part of the 2011 BL, I wanted to solidify that in the midst of this crazy year, that yours truly will still get out to see and do new things. Because of this, "#50 - Attend Five Events" was added.

Seems easy enough, right? However, my only rule was to not count events that yours truly attends every year such as Brooklyn Cyclones games (the tag-team partner and I have a Season package) or Brooklyn College Basketball games. The events for the most part had to be new, different, and a bit exclusive. So with out further adieu, here are five e…

2011 Bucket List - #2 Volunteer Or Assist For A Charitable Cause

There are various charities and foundations that contribute toward making the world a better place. Throughout the year, there are so many ways in which we as individuals can get involved. No time more important than the Christmas season. During a season when love, peace, and goodwill are of focus, acting on those sentiments is essential. Especially, for those who are in need of the emotional lift, and the others who are not as fortunate as the rest of us. 
The last three years the tag-team partner and I have participated in Operation Christmas Child, a program by Samaritan's Purse. OCC provides gifts and the message of hope for children in areas and parts of the world where the season of Christmas isn't as bright. Most importantly, it sends the message of Christ - a message that can change the lives of many of these children in despair times.

2011 Bucket List - #51 Play A Steel Drum

The instrument of the steel pan (or steel drum) is one that I've always been fascinated with. Since the days of my youth attending Carnival in St. Vincent, the sounds of such a raw product always seemed to ease me. The sounds the instrument produces creates such a soothing sound that just makes all of life's problems go away. And when there is a full steel pan band playing, forget it - I'm hooked. 
As a child, I played the piano for five years, played the snare drum in a marching band for three, the xylophone for 2 months (way too heavy, and not very cool) and the trumpet for six months. Of them all, the piano was my favorite, and by far was the instrument I took seriously.

2011 Bucket List - #26 Become More Confident In Myself

Confidence: belief in oneself and one's powers or abilities; self confidence; self reliance; assurance; certitude. 
DP devotees have long known that yours truly has dealt with the issue of self-confidence. For you new readers, don't worry, it's not a sappy cry-baby-type of issue, but one where sometimes I've struggled with the thought of something be deserving. More so, believing in the abilities that I possess.

I'm sure in some way, shape, or form, we've all been there.

2011 Bucket List - #41 Design An Article Of Clothing

The 2011 Bucket List is one that was strategically put together. What seemed like a hypothetical and impending schedule of wedding plans, apartment hunting, and basically beginning a new chapter of my life, several easy-to-reach tasks were added. With this new chapter beginning in my life, the things and activities of the past are becoming less frequent, and some are being eliminated altogether. With that, the addition of those easy-to-reach activities were child-hood activities to simply have that one-last hurrah.
One of the tasks meant to give that nostalgic last hurrah was: #41 - Design an article of clothing.
Remember the days when clothes and fashion were not earth shattering decision? No? Well maybe it was a guy thing. Or maybe it was just me. My very limited wardrobe consisted of the following: basketball shorts, sweatpants, t-shirts, hoodies, baseball hats and sneakers. Of course there were others necessities, but these items made up most of my everyday attire.…

Removing The Orange Haze

The recent scandal that has shocked Syracuse University,  the surrounding community, and its alumni and fans, has grown into a story that is down right disturbing. Fresh off the Penn State ordeal which saw the fall of a legendary coach, several horrifying testimonies, and a great concern in the crisis decision amongst our society, we are once again lambasted with the same characteristics of that scandal - a potential smear on the legacy of Basketball coach Jim Boeheim, unsettling evidence in a recorded phone conversation, and once again, a huge red flag in the constant disappearing decency amongst our society.
Looking at the Penn State case, I found it very difficult to grasp an understanding the way of life in State College, PA. I mentioned in a previous post that a caller to a local sports radio show claimed that on the mantle in every State College home was a picture of their family, Jesus Christ, and Joe Paterno. It helped me understand a bit more about the fascination …

The Pondering 10 - Christmas Season Misunderstandings

Now that the calendar bears the month of December, the Christmas Season is upon us. It is a time of reflecting, a time of family, a time of peace and most importantly, a time of celebrating the birth of a savior amongst us all. However, with December and the season, we have seen this time morph into several forms which have become a farce of the true meaning of Christmas. as a society we have added, twisted, and taken away from the true meaning of the season ultimately creating a false Christmas Season. With that said, in the latest Pondering 10 list, let's examine the top ten most misguided things about the Christmas season.

A DP Outlook On The New MLB CBA

Tuesday, November 22nd, Major League baseball and the Major League Baseball Player's association announced the new collective bargaining agreement for the next five years. The sport has come a long way since its last work stoppage in 1994. A stoppage that not only broke my heart as the Yankees were poised to make a run to a championship for the first time, but entirely erased the World Series and placed the game of baseball on hard track back to respectability amongst its fans. Yet, 1994 seems like ages ago as the new CBA guarantees 21 years of labor peace for MLB. Who would of ever thought? Heck, who would ever think MLB would become the model for financial well-being in the sports world? However, that is exactly where we are today.

As a super baseball enthusiast, I am excited. Very excited. Commissioner Bud Selig, and MLPA President, Michael Weiner, ought to be applauded for simply getting this deal done (Looking right at you NBA!). And with a new CBA, comes variou…

12 Years In The Making: Relax. Refresh. Return. Rejuvenate

It's been twelve years since I've been in the Caribbean. Over a decade. 4,383 days since yours truly experienced the culture, lifestyle, and aura that is the West Indies.
As a first generation West Indian child that was born and raised in the United States, my connection to the Caribbean has been fortunately, a strong one. From the customs of making your bed upon leaving it in the morning to the extroverted social kindness that was instilled throughout my youth, I had the opportunity to apply much of my family's heritage and background to my life. I enjoy foods like fried bakes, codfish cakes and aki, callaloo soup, curry goat, jerk chicken, and ox tail. Foods that Americans often would turn their nose up at in description, but foods that are overly enjoyable and downright terrific.

I grew to the sounds of reggae beyond Bob Marley, with others such as Beres Hammond, Jimmy Cliff, Peter Tosh, and the Mighty Sparrow. There were also the vibrant sounds of calyps…

Pondering Picture #15

Pondering Picture #14

Dome Pondering Movie Review: The Help (2011)

What is it about? 
An aspiring author in Jim Crow Mississippi looks to introduce the perspective of black maids that tend to white families, and the hardships they experience.
Who is in it?
Emma Stone - Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan
Viola Davis - Aibileen Clark
Octavia Spencer - Minny Jackson

2011 Bucket List - #17 Play Tennis

During my senior year of High School, yours truly made a controversial decision that was met with curiosity, disbelief, and well, some confusion. Upon the upstart of Canarsie High School's Men's Tennis program, yours truly not only decided to try out, but successfully made the team. Yes, the 6'5'' rail thin senior that quit baseball two years earlier to pursuit the greatest life experience in local missionary/peer counseling in Brooklyn, returned to play tennis. Not quite the expectation that most within my high school predicted or expected. You're playing what!?

Fortunately, despite not always having the greatest self-confidence, the good Lord has always given me a certain fortitude to never really quite care what others say or think about me. It is a weird blend of self-assurance, I know. 
The constant questions of why I didn't return to play baseball, the various sneers and comments others had, and of course the many, many individuals that scoffed…

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Horrible Bosses (2011)

What is it about? 
Three friends who have friends that make their lives miserable, come up with a plan that goes awry to kill their bosses. 
Who is in it? 
Jason Bateman - Nick Hendricks
Charlie Day - Dale Arbus
Jason Sudeikis - Kurt Buckman

Penn State Saga: Football? We Talkin' 'Bout Football?

As I sat on my couch this past week watching students on the Penn State campus and many more in the small town of State College, PA chant, protest, riot, and voice their opinions over the release of Joe Paterno, it somehow caused a slight infuriating feeling that forced me to shut it off. I immediately tweeted the following to release those feelings: 

"Penn State students who are protesting might be the most delusional human beings on earth right now. Wow. Football? Missing the point, huh?"
Over the last couple of days, I had the opportunity and insight of listening via sports radio to a man from State College, PA who grew up in the area and attended and graduated from Penn State. He discussed the aura and legend that is Joe Paterno and explained just a little bit of the culture in rural State College, PA.  In his precise words he stated, "on our mantle, similar to most of the families in State college, there was a picture of our family, Jesus Christ, and …

2011 Bucket List - #25 Eat Something I Never Have Before

Growing up, we each had the foods we liked to eat, even though they were terrible for us, and the foods we attempted to stay away from, despite being nutritional for our growing bodies. Regardless of the preference, we often had to eat both, and basically took the bad - vegetables and fruits - in order to enjoy the good - pizza, burger, and fries. Somewhere in between the teenage years and young adult-hood, our eating habits were formed based upon our new found freedom to make choices without influence from mom and dad (or because they just said to do so).
As the years continue, our eating habits are somewhat formed for the long haul as we return back to those old habits of trying to eat healthy to keep off the pounds, while still keeping a terrible side of the diet to keep things enjoyable. And with that, comes the shameless likes, dislikes, and usual norms that any pattern-filled interest cycle has. Add the reasoning of cultural influences with the nurturing norms, and our eating h…

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Larry Crowne (2011)

What is it about? 
A man who recently lost his job reinvents himself by enrolling and attending college. 
Who is in it? 
Tom Hanks - Larry Crowne
Julia Roberts - Mercedes Tainot
Cedric The Entertainer - Lamar

Dome Pondering Movie Review: The Hangover Part II (2011)

What is it about? 
Two years after the infamous bachelor party in Las Vegas, Alan, Stu, and Phil get into trouble again before Stu's wedding in Thailand.
Who is in it? 
Bradley Cooper - Phil
Ed Helms - Stu
Alan - Zach Galifianakis

Remembering The 2011 MLB Season

After one of the best World Series in my lifetime, the 2011 Major League Baseball Season is now complete. In a season that gave us many stories, milestones, and moments, the ultimate prize being won by the St. Louis Cardinals is the biggest and most memorable of them all. A team making the playoffs after being seven and half games back of the wild card spot heading into the final month of the season - impressive. A team making the playoffs after being out three games with five to play - remarkable. A team beating the likes of the Phillies rotation sporting names like Halladay, Lee, Oswalt, and Hamels - stunning. A team outlasting the Brewers offense - astonishing. A team that was a strike away from losing the World Seriese - twice! - and managed to win the entire thing - awesome! The 2011 St. Louis Cardinals is a team that I will always remember for their fortitude, their incomparable spirit, and their never say die attitude led by a Hall of Fame manager/innovator in Tony LaRussa.
H…

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Easy A (2010)

What is it about? 
A clean-cut intelligent teenager uses rumors and gossip to advance her standing and finances while helping others. 
Who is in it? 
Emma Stone - Olive

Amanda Bynes - Marianne
Penn Badgley - Woodchuck Todd

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Half Past Dead (2002)

What is it about? 
While going undercover in a hi-tech prison in order to exact revenge on those who killed his wife, a man becomes wrapped up in a plot involving the FBI and a $200 million pot of gold.
Who is in it? 
Steven Seagel - Sasha Petrosevitch

Ja Rule - Nicholas "Nic" Frazier
Morris Chestnut - Donald Robert Johnson

Full Timeout, Home Team

Well, we are at that point folks. After a year and a half of wedding planning, apartment hunting, saving, spending, listing, delegating, searching, living, and many of the other things life has thrown this way, yours truly and my tag team partner are going on vacation. A twenty-second timeout in life as my tag team partner would say. It has been awhile since our last excursion, two and half years to be exact, and it is amazing to see how much our lives have changed since then. We have our new home, a new life together, and for her, a new last name.
After such changes, which of course has seen us go down a Unity Road, we are in dire need of this twenty-second timeout, or as in this case, a complete full timeout. With 9.24 getting smaller and smaller in our rear view mirror, the time is upon us to head down to St. Lucia for seven days of relaxation and fun in the sun for our honeymoon.

Little Boys With Big Dreams Again

On a cold night on October 28th, 2011, I’d be remised if I didn’t touch base on what has been an amazing World Series between the Texas Rangers and St. Louis Cardinals. Usually, yours truly will touch base on the most memorable moments after the season is completed (Remembering The 2010 MLB Season), but the 2011 World Series brought a different dynamic for the game of baseball.
A World Series that did not feature the mega-market ratings grabbers in the New Yorks, Bostons, Chicagos, Philadelphias, and Los Angeleses, yet, Dallas-Forth Worth and St. Louis gave us the type of World Series that baseball has needed for awhile. It was a series that not only kept the die-hards interested, but reeled in the casual and the sporadic fan.
It was a World Series that had intense drama, various storylines, and reintroduced a key aspect that makes the game of baseball such a beautiful thing.

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Due Date (2010)

What is it about? 
Peter Highman, a high-strung, busy, and aggressive architect, who is also a father-to-be is forced to hitch a ride with a quirky amateur actor, Ethan Tremblay across country. Their journey is a wild and chaotic one in order to make it in time for the birth of Peter's child. 
Who is in it? 
Robert downey Jr. - Peter Highman

Zack Galifianinakis - Ethan Tremblay/Ethan Chase

Albert Pujols Is Enough To Watch World Series

Everything is bigger in Texas.

And Albert Pujols proved that last night with his performance in Game 3 of the World Series.

If going 5 for 6 with three home runs and six runs batted in weren't enough, Pujols' first home run probably would still be traveling if it didn't careen off the facing of the left-field upper deck at the Ballpark in Arlington.

With all of the talk about baseball needing to revamp the World Series somehow to increase TV ratings, last night's game was a clear testament that the game doesn't need any gimmicks or tricks to draw interest, just sheer star power and talent. And as much as this year's World Series lacks the big cities like New York and Philadelphia, it has two great teams with great players, including the greatest player in the game in Albert Pujols.

2011 Bucket List - #3 Run 5K

Anyone that knows me, understands my reasons for not liking to run. Plain and simple. It hurts. It's always hurt. Being born with two club feet, with one surgically repaired with a metal pin still inside, and under developed lower leg muscles, I hope you can understand the reasoning for the hurt. It is a hurt that I have carried with me my entire life whenever I've played sports, or have been physically active. Like any other person, my legs have their good days where I feel like I can run forever, and those not so good days, where I just want to stay off of my feet. Most days of my life have been somewhere in between, but yes, with that hurt.
[Blog side note: DP devotees know my story, but for new readers, a doctor told my parents that physical activity was out of the question for me in my life. Safe to say I've carried those words with me as motivation for my entire life.]

The Pondering 10 - Reasons To Dislike Reality Television

Since the invention of television, the little tube box, now a slimmer box, that sits as the center piece of our living rooms have produced many years of entertainment. As the years have gone on, we've seen various fads and genre's of programming such as talk shows, sitcoms, drama series and games shows, thus creating various types of entertainment, and many options. With the average household having at least one television and 150 channels, our society is more in tune with everything going on around them along with the need to look in on the lives of others, the current trend in television is that of reality television. And while reality TV has developed some pretty amazing concepts (Survivor, Amazing Race, American Idol, and Ultimate Fighter), the concept has done more damage to our society than any other type of television genre. Heck, I'll be honest, I loathe most of reality television. In the following Pondering 10, we'll take a look at the top ten rea…

Alert! Alert! An NBA Fan's Panic Rant

It is time to push the red button. Alert! Alert!
Yes, it is time to panic.
After the recent marathon meetings held by the NBA and the Players union, nothing has been settled other than the clear fact the NBA or it's players just don't care about the health of their brand. As per the case with these labor lockouts and strife in professional sports, the casual sports fan usually generalizes the issue by stating "its nothing but millionaires fighting over billions". Most of the time, they are completely correct, but often, there is a bit more to the complex situation. Yet, in this situation, as a huge NBA fan, I find myself harboring the same thought process on this issue - enough already!

I'm annoyed. I'm frustrated. I'm hurt.
Heck, I love the NBA. I need the NBA! I understand it is a league that is hit or miss depending on your geographic location in this great country, but for a kid growing up in Brooklyn, NY in basketball-rich New York Cit…

Dome Pondering Movie Review: The Social Network (2010)

What is it about?
The story of how the historical social network site, Facebook, was founded. 
Who is in it? 
Jesse Eisenberg - Mark Zuckerberg

Andrew Garfield - Eduardo Saverin
Justin Timberlake - Sean Parker

Bound For Glory is Bound By The Past

Around this time last year, yours truly expounded on what was a very good Bound For Glory, with a payoff that surely looked like a new era for TNA Wrestling (Bound For Glory Could Mark A New Era In TNA Wrestling). Of course, that potential came to a screeching halt after a mess of a pay-per-view event in the 2011 version of Victory Road (An Emphatic, "What Is This?" TNA Victory Road A Dead End). However, the past recent months have really begun to have this fan fall in love all over again with the Impact Wrestling product. 
From the re-branding, re-focus, and infusion of young talent in the X-Division, an interesting (but not perfect yet) concept of the Bound For Glory Series, a string of strong Impacts, and the focus on some new talent (or so we thought), Impact Wrestling seemed to have finally gotten out of it's own way. Something it hasn't been able to do in the past three or four years.
Heck, I'd even been enjoying Hogan's work the past couple months.
With …

The 800LB Pound Gorilla In The Nation

The United States of America falling behind in the Global Education race has been the 800lb Gorilla in the nation when it comes to domestic issues and policies. For years, our nation has kept this issue hushed in an attempt to wish it away by not acknowledging it or embracing it. Somehow, we believed turning a blind eye to the issue us the best way to deal with a problem that has only grown in severity as the informational age explodes.  Today, the issue is no longer deniable, ignorable, and avoidable. The future of America is in great danger. And while the current economy is the biggest threat, the production of the future minds of our nation is a driving force.
Every time I drive past my High School here in Brooklyn, NY, I shake my head in despair when I look at the building. See, my High School experience was an interesting one. While it taught me many valuable lessons about people, relations, and the real world earlier than the young adult would, that building depri…

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Rio (2011)

What is it about? 
Blu, a domesticated macaw bird from Minnesota is off to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in order to save his species by meeting, an independent macaw, Jewel. After meeting, the two embark on an adventure to reconnect with Blu's owner, but end up having an adventure that will change their lives. 
Who is in it? 
Jesse Eisenberg - Blu
Anne Hathaway - Jewel
George Lopez - Rafael

Rational Dose of Medicine For The Yankee Fan's Sickness

After the devastating night of the New York Yankees elimination occurred, I decided to give myself a few days to mope around, to wallow in this hurt, and most importantly, to allow the usual end of the season "retain or release" column to be filled with sensible decisions rather than ones of sheer fandum emotion. 
What I found and heard the days following that disappointing Thursday was a fan base that had absolutely lost it's marbles. A fan base that flooded blogs, forums, and of course, sports radio with the type of thinking I wanted no part of. A thinking that is destructive and downright irrational. 
It was the type of thinking that quite honestly, yours truly found very embarrassing to be a Yankee fan.

Dome Pondering Movie Review: The Town (2010)

What is it about?
A chronic bank robber looks to balance his current life and his feelings for a former bank manager connected to his last crime while attempting to make his way out of the family bank robbing business. 
Who is in it? 
Ben Mcray - Ben Affleck

Rebecca Hall - Claire Keesey
Jon Hamm - F.B.I. Adam Frawley

The Truth Party: America Defeating Itself

On the heels of the release of Amanda Knox from the Italian government, the appreciation for our justice system seems to have come to the forefront as of late. Our government by no means has a spotless history, nor is it perfect, however, anti-American bias that was shown in the Knox trial overseas caused a slight appreciation for our American system. Whether she is guilty or not is not the issue here at hand, and quite honestly, one that I am not completely sure of. Nonetheless, the Italian press coverage that purposely withheld vital information to the case from it's readers and viewers is the type of justice, or injustice, that is offered to Americans overseas. 
Nonetheless, while the current victory that our government and society crowned as Knox has returned to American soil in Seattle, our government is under as much scrutiny as I have ever remembered in my lifetime. On all fronts, it seems Americans has lost confidence in those that are supposed to be repres…

The Most Complete Athlete of All-Time

September is gone. 9.24 is over. The Unity Road has ended. 
October is here, and the playoffs have begun. Time for yours truly to get back to the real world, and various topics and subjects that need to be pondered. One of those topics being the 602nd save of Mariano Rivera. 
While yours truly has suffered from severe tunnel vision on my own Unity Road, Mariano Rivera, the greatest closer of all-time, slammed the door shut on some poor team baffled by his wicked slider, to become the all-time saves leader in baseball history. And as late as this piece is, there was no chance of me letting that event go without acknowledging it here on the DP. Besides being the greatest closer of all-time, Rivera is the greatest pitcher that yours truly has ever seen in a lifetime (yes, really), and of course, my favorite athlete ever since I was a 12 year old boy.

The Unity Road Writings - End of Road

Road over. 
As the days on the calendar have fallen off since 9.24, yours truly is still amazed. Still in awe. And still excited. 
After all, I'm married, and in the words of Darius Rucker (Yes, Darius Rucker), "But as far as I can see, I have everything I want. 'Cause I got a roof over my head, the woman I love layin' in my bed, and it's alright, it's alright."
As married life takes off, I am more content than I ever have been. More in-tune with myself, and more at peace with myself.
9.24 brought about a new chapter (obviously) for yours truly. However, the unity road opened many doors, closed some that needed to be shut, and exposed some fears, secrets, and inner thoughts that needed to be dealt with. 
And on a day where we will finally close the Unity Road Writings, I find myself realizing, as one of my best men stated in a terrific and assuring speech, that I am ready for this.

The Unity Road Writings - Fulfilled

0 days to go 
"Get ready to fly...I am, I am
So went the tune of my cell phone which has the "Phenomenal" AJ Styles' entrance theme as my wake up alarm sound.
As yours truly sluggishly rolled over to shut it off, it finally dawned on me that today is the day it all begins to come to an end. 
No more countdowns
No more experiences on this road
No more treating this like it is Wrestlemania. 
For the countdown is on zero. 
The road is over. 
And Wrestlemania, well, no more hype, we go live tomorrow, baby!

The Unity Road Writings - No Cliches. Just A Band Of Brothers

6 days to go. 
I've never been big on the party scene. I'm not one that has interest in hitting the bars, clubs, or even going out and taking in the nightlife of the city. In true syndication with my personality, I've always been the type that is content with relaxing and watching a game. I just like to chill, if you will. So when the topic of planning one's bachelor party began to bud from an idea into full fledged planning and reality, I was curious as to what was to come from my best men. 
In the days leading up to the event, I received word on several variations on a day planned around celebrating what will soon-to-be a dead bachelor life. Activities such as paintball, dinner, lounges, bars, and a night out in New York City were all on tap. However, after a few scheduling conflicts caused a fall through, none of the aforementioned occured.
What happened instead was one of the lamest bachelor parties in the history of mankind, but one that I wouldn't change if you …

The Unity Road Writings - Pre-Show Butterflies

10 days to go. 
If the idea of getting married hasn't begun to settle in, and creating that surreal feeling as described in my last entry of this series (Ring of Honor), then today surely would have.
After getting used to the idea of the wedding band physically, aesthetically, and symbolically, the tag team partner and I headed down to the City Clerk's office of New York City this morning to acquire an affidavit for our marriage license, set to be signed, approved, and official on September 23rd. 
So while 9.24, the Wrestlemania, the big day, the main event is the focus, somehow, my unity road tunnel vision has moved ahead twenty-four hours to when the true responsibility begins:
September 23rd, 2011. 
For what seems like months now, co-workers, friends, and family have constantly asked me the question that somehow has negatively become associated with marriage in today's society - are you nervous, yet?

The Unity Road Writings - Ring of Honor

12 days to go. 
With under two weeks to go until Wrestlema...er...9.24, the pressure is now on to finalize everything. With the frame work set for the big day, much of the minor tasks remain to be completed. Some of the tasks include reception table centerpieces, flowers, minor decorations, reception format, reception seating, and overall logistics throughout the day for the wedding party. 
However, now off the to-do list is the purchase of the wedding bands. An important purchase, of course. 
This past weekend the tag-team partner and I cruised on out to Long Island to the Roosevelt Mall to visit a Zales store. The visit, centered around seeking out our bands, brought back memories of looking for the perfect engagement ring. The visit seemed full circle for yours truly on this unity road. 
After learning a bit about bands as opposed to diamongs and engagement rings I've become so familiar with over the past three years, slipping a ring on my finger felt awfully weird. 
I'll …

9/11: Unanswered Questions And Solid Truths Ten Years Later

It was second period gym class, and I anticipated the next forty minutes going by very quickly. As of late, handball was the sport of choice, and I slowly grew to like the sport as I improved. As Ms. Goodman, one  of the many Canarsie High School physical education teachers walked in to take attendance, and of course checked to see who was dressed and prepared, she awkwardly pulled up a chair to the front of the class of fifty and asked us politely and somberly to take a seat and listen. 
Known for her sarcastic comments and her ability to wisely mess with students who weren't the brightest stars in the sky, she uttered several words that were met with an awkward reaction: 
"I'm not sure how else to say this, and I"m sure some of you are beginning to hear things now, but a plane just crashed into the World Trade Center"

Running From You

Tap, tap, tap, tap
Your footsteps are lingering on deck
The vapor of your breath,
Whispering on the back of my neck

Tap, tap, tap, tap
I know your coming my way,
Looking to capture me,
In a relentless pursuit everyday

Tap, tap, tap, tap
You've gotten me before,
Laughing as you did it,
As I stumbled to the floor

Dome Pondering Celebrates 400

On September 9th, 2011, Dome Pondering celebrates it's 400th post on the Blogger network. 400 marks another milestone, as well as marks the least amount of time needed for 100 posts. As the blog continues to grow in content and audience, the regularity of frequent pondering and posting is at all-time high for the site. Thank you for your continued interest in Dome Pondering, and the sometimes strange array of thoughts, as we go through this race called life. Before we begin on the pursuit of the big 500, lets take a look at the best posts of the last 100. 
Top Five Favorite Posts Over Last 100
1. College Baseball: A Time Remembered Forever 2. What Does 26 Mean? 3. Ten Seconds Can Change (Or Scare) The World 4. Open Letter To Knicks Fans and "Knicks Fans": Where Were You? 5. The Pondering 10 - Annoying Facebook Users

Pondering Picture #13

Anyone else find the items located in the "Back To School" section a bit weird? Controversial?

W's Perspective on 9/11 Earns New Found Respect

George W. Bush has a reputation that is not flattering. In fact, the former President of the United States of America is often the butt of many jokes by Republicans, Democrats, conservatives, liberals, independents, right and left wingers, and well, just about every red-blooded American in the union. 
The former President has never portrayed a sense of charisma, style, and/or grace that former likeable presidents have shown. Not to mention, he is one of the poorer public speaking Presidents the nation has had in some while. 
And while President Bush has had many things going against him which steered his reputation away from a stellar legacy, events such as 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, a rapidly declining economy, and of course the controversial, and unfounded, weapons of mass destruction all occurred under his presidency.

Extreme Weekend: Goodnight (Morning), Irene

I opened my eyes, and in some ways ears, to my cell phone ringing on the floor nearby. As I got up from crashing on the couch for the three hours and answered the phone, it was my dad on the other line. He was checking in to see how my tag team partner and I were doing after the storm. 
Wait, what?! "After, the storm?"
As I quickly turned my head to the windows to see the bright skies and calm atmosphere overlaying Brooklyn, NY, I was in sudden amazement. What happened between 8:00am and 11:30am? As I dozed off on the couch a bit after 8am, the latest forecast including the worst of Irene lasting until Noon, with rain thereafeter compeltely ceasing at 7pm this evening. 
I quickly recieved word from my tag team partner and my father that the storm had declined into a weaker tropical storm and had now made it's way west toward upstate New York. 
Wow. Hurricane Irene is finally over. 

Extreme Weekend: Me, Myself, and Irene (Through The Night)

As Saturday morning rolled in, light rain fell from the sky almost as a subtle (and mean) tease from Irene. In her vicious way, she is letting us know that she is on her way, and will take her time in doing so. A cruel calm before the storm if you will. However, as the light rain fell, my tag team partner and I made ourselves comfortable in our apartment as we will be nestled here for well, the entire weekend, and possibly Monday. 
As Irene neared, the reports on her status as she weakened in overall strength, but grew in size, lent to the overall anticipation and fear of what to expect from a hurricane. Can this city handle one? What will become of the Subway system? How does such a storm affect an area with large skyscrapers? 
All of these questions became huge red flags as reports of deaths from Irene's path became known. 
Nonetheless, as 10:00pm rolled in, reports of tornadoes touching down within Irene's path become known, and the most rain I've ever seen in my entire li…

Extreme Weekend: Waiting on Irene

After what seemed like a frightening enough experience this week with a ten second earthquake, New York City is set to experience yet another natural disaster this weekend. Rare for the North East, this area is getting its fair share of preparing, experiencing, and enduring the type of wrath mother nature can produce. Next on the agenda is Hurricane Irene.
The upcoming weekend shall be interesting as being from this once natural disaster immune area known as the North East, I, along with others from this area, have very little experience in preparing and surviving hurricanes.
The only experience with hurricane preparation was about ten years ago when New York City was expected to get pounded by a tropical storm. Schools were cancelled and a few offices were closed. However, all we ever received on that Monday morning was some rain, a few rumblings and lightning. Nothing of impact at all.
Irene, however, is something all the more serious, and all the more real.

Dome Pondering Import - Unique Triple Play

In a year that has seen some great sports plays and events, a recent play was one of rarity and uniqueness. While the triple play in baseball is one that is rarely seen, the following Dome Pondering Import is a triple play that is even rarer. With a fly ball to deep center field, a minor league team is able to turn three outs on one of the wackiest plays yours truly has ever seen. Enjoy. 

Ten Seconds Can Change (Or Scare) The World

It was a normal Tuesday afternoon during the summer. The sun was shining, the air was cool, and my lunch was in front of me in the cafeteria at my workplace. Everything, pretty much routine. Salad. Water. Chicken. Just looking to eat, relax, and chat with some co-workers for an hour before heading back to serving the public through park and recreation. 
As I sat there, I noticed my surroundings beginning to shake. Am I having a migraine? A usual vertigo-type of feeling whenever I suffer from the painful headaches. 
No. I'm fine. The movement continued. 
I checked my chair. Yup, all four legs are evenly on the ground, just like every other day, just like they always are. 
The movement continued. 
My water swishing from side to side in it's bottle. 
Then I looked at my coworker quickly whose face had my thoughts written all over it - the building was moving. 
The building is moving!

The Pondering 10 - Annoying Facebook Users

The age of FaceBook is upon us, and for the foreseeable future, is here to stay. Facebook is everywhere, and is included in everything. It is a primary source of information, social networking, and overall connection to the rest of the world. The ability to stay connected with loved ones, friends, and even those we've lost touch with over the years is amazing. While I do enjoy the benefits of Facebook, there are several aspects of Facebook that cause you to shake your head about it's existence, specifically, its abuse by fellow users. The following Pondering 10 list are the most annoying types of users on Facebook.

2011 Bucket List - #49 Purchase Something I've Always Wanted Without Financial Or Guilty Worry

I’m cheap. I can admit it.
Although, I like to call it being economic.

I don’t like to spend money, and for the most part, I find the majority of money spent by the “typical” American to be almost compulsive. Yet, I’ve never had a problem with it as the spending helps our economy, which we all know,  needs as much help as it can get in these times. 
I'm able to spend on things of need, but on things of want, it is some sort of restrictive guilt and/or mindset that doesn't allow me to do so.
Expensive clothes, gadgets, heck, even a smartphone, I don't find to be a very wise or efficient purchase. Unless of course, found at a discounted rate.
But hey, that's just me. Once again, we all have different financial philosophies. Mine, is on the far end of the spectrum that is tightly wound.

The Unity Road Writings: On The Other Side

41 Days to go.
As the invitations come in, and yay’s and no’s each get their own individual reaction from my tag team partner and I, the reality of 9.24 becomes clearer and clearer. It’s almost like wiping the fog off of a mirror, with the vision and expectation for 9.24 now becoming clear. And as we begin to scratch those from the list of 162 who aren’t coming, and even double scratch with an eye-roll on those who aren’t coming for crazy reasons (you know who you are!), a lot of the planning is now entering into the minor logistical phase. Who is walking down the aisle where? What songs does the organist play? What is the format order of the reception? What will my theme song be? Just kidding on the last one. Well, sort of… Yet, the hard stuff is out of the way, and the minor, some would say, fun, things are now on tap. This past weekend, my tag partner and I had the opportunity to attend my cousin’s wedding, held in Long Island, NY. A beautiful wedding indeed, and one that we would h…

Are We Gazing At The Throne?

When I was younger, like all younger-to-older generations, there was always a feeling that my elders never quite understood the music of my generation. This was especially the case for Hip-Hop. I always enjoyed the the attitude, the passion, the beats, the hooks, and of course, being the constant blogger and lover of words, expression and opinion, the lyrics. Especially, the lyrics. Because of those characteristics, I grew to enjoy Jay-Z's music over the years. It's the same reason I liked College Dropout, Kanye West's first album, which was full of passion and hunger to prove he was just as much of a rapper as he was a producer.

However, as the hip-hop industry evolves, it seems the style of hip-hop that I grew up with is fading away. I feel as if I am now turning into the elder generation that I never quite understood. Because honestly, I don't quite understand the music of today.

Pondering Picture #12

New York Red Bulls Open Practice at Hudson River Park (Chelsea Waterside)

The Unity Road Writings: I'll Be Back

48 days to go.
And with 48 days to go, yours truly embarked on his final trip to the site of 9.24 before well...9.24. It was an odd feeling heading into the city which will not only begin a new chapter in my life in about a month and a half, but also end one as well. The usual trips to Syracuse have almost been routine for the past four years with my tag team partner. Labor Day Weekend, Christmas, and the occasional spring trip. All trips intended for relaxation and enjoyment. However, this weekend breaks the pattern. It is August. It is random. And well, it was all about finalizing 9.24. 
The weekend had a few tasks which included a meeting with our caterer (who besides being a Red Sox fan, is amazing), completing our marriage counseling (which was a very eye opening activity), and touring the hotel which will house this expected crazy celebration. 
And while we did accomplish them all, the only feeling as drove I away from Syracuse with the Carrier Dome in my rear view mirror was o…