Tag Archives: review


I went to BlogWorld & New Media Expo 2010 a couple of weeks ago, and am still recovering. It was fantastic on so many levels. I met lots of interesting people, learned all kinds of good stuff, and walked the equivalent of a trip to the moon and back, carrying a laptop and all the assorted swag and junk that accumulated daily like barnacles on a battleship. I learned a lot about what to do differently at my next conference. Like fly Southwest instead of United, carry a notebook instead of a laptop, and go to the exhibit hall on the first day instead of the last. Water under the battleship, as they say.

Picture credit : Al Seib - Costume credit : Dominique LemieuxBefore heading to BlogWorld, Cirque du Soleil offered me a pair of tickets to the show of my choosing. I picked Mystère on Saturday night. Since I didn’t know anyone else who would be attending, this gave me the opportunity to make a new friend, or at the very least, the perfect bribe to get someone to pretend to be my friend for a couple of hours.

We went to the Shriner Circus every year when I was a kid. It always included a variety of clown acts, some aerialists, peanuts, popcorn, and a whole lot of animal stink under the Big Top. The entire night was magic.

Cirque du Soleil is nothing like the Shriner Circus. For one thing, there were no actual animals. And another, comfortable seats. And the popcorn costs 8 bucks. And, unlike Shriner’s, the clowns didn’t make anyone cry. But the magic is there, in that theater, in leaps and bounds.

How do I describe what I saw? Amazing. Inspiring. Mesmerizing. Captivating. Stunning. Hilarious. Spellbinding. Actually, all those words are inadequate to describe a night’s entertainment that left me (almost) speechless.

Picture credit : Al Seib - Costume credit : Dominique Lemieux
What did I like? Everything.

My favorite parts:

Taiko starts the circus like the Big Bang. It felt like my heart was part of the show as my entire body rocked to the beat of the drums. It was primal, and everywhere. I lost myself in the rhythm, and my whole being ate it up, feeling it soak into every pore, and run through every vein.

Hand to Hand: Two brothers, in an awesome show of grace and strength, moved in fluid motion from one incredible pose to another. It is hard to describe the extreme control and power they exhibited. I wanted to be them. I wanted to have them. The women in their lives are very, very lucky.

High Bar: Aerialists leapt from bar to bar, 40 feet in the air, without missing a single flip, roll, or catch. I, in complete contrast, have a permanent bruise on my hip because, after 7 years in this house, I still can’t walk through the kitchen without running into the table, or corner of the counter. These people would fly, completely trusting that someone would catch them, 30 feet later. And the catcher always did. It was flawless, and took my breath away.

Picture credit : Al Seib - Costume credit : Dominique Lemieux

If I were 6 years old, this is the circus I would run away to. The entire performance, from beginning to end, was one being, one organism, floating along a river overflowing its banks with passion, energy and singularity of purpose: to capture my imagination, and my soul.

When the show was over, I felt mentally spent, as if I had performed along with every act. And I left wanting more. This is why they gave me free tickets. Just like a drug dealer handing out samples, they knew I’d get hooked and keep coming back for more.


(P.S.: Thank you to @freshatforty for going with me. You made the evening more enjoyable by allowing me to share the circus with a new friend.)


What’s this? A new arcade game?

Step on up, kids, for the thrill of a lifetime. Watch the lobsters quiver with fear, climbing over each other to get away from the claw, descending slowly, and taking them to their final resting place…your stomach.

It’s not video, it’s real live lobsters. The sign says, “You catch ’em, we cook ’em”. The game is “The Lobster Zone.” For $2 a try, you get to work the mechanical claw in place and drop it on a very nervous group of lobsters. You catch one, and they cook it for free.
If you think that’s a good deal, let’s do the math.

Red Lobster: Rock Lobster Tail
Prepared oven-broiled and served fluffed on the shell. 28.99 (plus tax & tip). That same 30 bucks will get you 15 tries in the Lobster Zone.

I saw this guy playing and ventured over to see what the excitement was. He told me he had played “at least” 25 bucks. Then he played for another hour. He could have had two lobster dinners. Oh, but I know, he’d be missing the thrill of the hunt.
A quick search on the web took me to http://thelobsterzone.com/, the creators of this vending machine. According to their website: “…sells about 10 tanks a week for $8,995 apiece. Restaurant owners say it’s a good investment — many are making $1,000 a week on the machines.”

Of course, you can’t have a game with live animals without PETA getting their furr in a snit. They say it’s “demeaning to the lobsters.” Sure. Much less demeaning than just sitting in a tank at the grocery store, where kids knock on the glass, stick their hands, and whatever else they’ve got, into the tanks, and eventually take their final ride in a box or plastic bag.

I’d hate to demean a lobster. I’ll just go beat up on some broccoli while I play with my bonzai kitty.

Authentic Mexican food at its finest

We just ate at Mi Cocina Mexican Restaurant. It’s an unassuming little place at the corner of Bellevue and Windemere in Littleton, CO. When we arrived, the dining room was packed. We were seated quickly, and brought a basket of crisp and hot homemade chips, and salsa with just enough bite to get your attention.


Husband’s fajita special came out on a sizzling platter, and he ate every scrap, except for the freshly made guac, which he generously shoveled my way. I had the chile relleno plate. The rellenos were crisp, the sauce was generous, and the beans and rice, which were good on their own, were great for sopping up the remainders of the sauce with the last of the chips. It was so good, I wanted to lick the plate. (But I didn’t, just in case you’re wondering.)
The prices are very reasonable: $7.95 for the special, $7.50 for my meal. We have added them to our list of favorites. Maybe we’ll see you there sometime soon.