Off the Dial

Congratulations, Michael Allen!

Okay, indulge me in a little bit of name dropping.  We're pretty excited for PGA Player Michael Allen.  In his first time on the 50+ tour, Allen won the Senior PGA Championship.

Allen is a friend of my husband's.  They met a few years ago on a business venture.  Our friend Izzy Justice invented something called the Short Game Bullseye.  It's a target tool that helps you work on your short game (natch).  Bonus - hear Jim Szoke on the website.

Michael Allen was the oldest player in the field to make the cut a couple of weeks ago here at Quail Hollow.  That's the last time Slade saw him – they had dinner together with Izzy and a couple of other guys from the tournament. 

Allen's daughter has type 1 diabetes.  I gave him and his wife a copy of my book when he was in town.  I told Slade I'm sure that's what made all the difference this time out!


Elmo Has Diabetes, Too

We've come a long way when it comes to changing my son's insulin pump inset.  That's the connection point from the pump to his body and we have to change it every three days.  Sort of like a more mild, shallow version of a shunt - better explained here.  It's like giving him a shot every three days.

A lot of people use a numbing cream, like Lidocain, so it doesn't hurt going in.  On the advice of our diabetes educator, we didn't use the cream at first.  You have to leave the cream on for at least an hour and it just seemed like a lot for something that (we were told) wouldn't hurt that much.  Truly, it seemed like a good idea at the time.  Benny hated the button (as we call it) but right after it was on him, it didn't hurt at all.  We thought he'd just get used to it.

He didn't and It was awful.  We basically held him tight and popped the button on for the first year.  That's not too hard with a two year old, but as he got bigger, it got tougher.  And it was just heartbreaking.   I spent about the next six months trying to convince him that the cream wouldn't hurt.  He wouldn't even let me put it on his skin.  Finally, one day, don't ask me why, he let me use the Lidocaine.  What a difference.

Benny still doesn't like when it's time to change the button.  He'll ask for one more story, one more TV show, anything to stall.  But it is night and day compared to our experience before.  We do all sorts of silly things to make it easier and distract him.  His favorite right now is having Slade hold him upside down while I pop the button on.

Recently, though, Slade wasn't around and it was button day.  I reminded Benny that upside down button placement is not a one-person job.  He said, let's have Elmo do it.

Benny's always loved his stuffed animals.  When we first got his pump, his Mickey Mouse doll wore one too.  Elmo is his favorite now and he's been helping us with diabetes for a while.  You see, sometimes Elmo has diabetes too and Benny has to check Elmo's blood sugar.  He gets a pretend juice box if he's low, insulin if he's high.  Benny will put a button on him and talk to him about diabetes.  It's great.

I wasn't quite sure how we were going to have Elmo help us out here, but I was willing to try.  As usual, my kids showed me the way.  Lea came in to see what was going on and she decided we'd play "Elmo says."  She held Elmo and had him tell us what to do.  Put your hand on your head.  Hop on one foot.  Let Mommy put your button on.  And it worked! Yay, Elmo (and Lea)!

The only time Benny complains about having diabetes is when we change his inset.  I think he's a pretty cool customer with all the finger pricks and glucose checks, especialy for a four year old.  But if we can get this button thing a little less stressful for him, I think it will be so much better in the long run.  We may feel a little silly playing Elmo says every three days, but if it works, bring on the silly. 

My “Lost” Theory

One more episode to go this season and then just one more season to go!

Here's my theory for how it all ends on Lost:

The whole "the plane never crashes" discussion is a giant red herring.  I can't imagine the show's creators would craft a story in which the plane peacefully lands in LA but all the passengers still have terrible lives and horrible problems.  They can't possible let stand: Hurley's bad luck, Charlie's heroin addiction, Locke's paralysis, Jack's daddy issues, Sun & Jin's bad marriage and Kate's arrest (okay, I'm fine with that last one!), etc.

The key must be a change before they get on the plane.  Who ties the most characters together?  He of the white sneakers and bad bedside manner – Dr. Christian Shepard.  Save the shephard, save the world!  Wait, wrong show.

If Dr. Shepard is a better man, he helps so many of the other characters become better people as well (or at least he doesn't mess them up).  Yes, this is a half-formed theory, but it feels right to me.  Check out Lostpeida's entry on the good doctor and see if it doesn't somehow feel right to you, too.

So Christian Shepard gets a kick in the pants from a younger Charles Widmore or maybe Smokey straightens him out off-island.  I have no idea how they do it, but I think Shepard holds the key.  The Losties become better people so when they get on the plane (and they absolutely have to get back on the plane so we can see that terrific airport scene redone) we get to see what their lives should have been like.  Then they all land in LA and go to Hugo's house for another Tiki party.

Salad this week

I think I ate more last week than I have all year. 

Double whammy of judging a catering contest and hanging out with the hospitality folks at the Quail Hollow Championship.  I know – heavy lifting!

I got a media pass this year to cover the golf tournament.  My beat?  The food.  I'm doing a new project on sports events and hospitality.  Basically, that means I get to go behind the scenes at some cool Charlotte events and eat well.  Oh yeah, and take lots of notes and interview a bunch of people. 

I spent quite a bit of time with John Sergi, the local food and hospitality guru who's also the consultant for Citifield in NY and US Open Tennis.  He's set the table (so to speak) for the golf tournament since the beginning.  It was fun to trail him around the course but it was also pretty filling!  I'll keep you posted on the project – I'm including some NASCAR stuff and the Panthers, so it'll be at least the fall before I'm finished. 

I can tell you that the research and work behind what they serve at Quail Hollow is pretty amazing.  It not only influences what is served, but where.  They even put a lot of thought into what to serve the media.  And trust me, we're not picky.

The other event was the very cleverly named "So You Think You Can Cater."  It was a fun contest to help get the word out about the new Vintage Motor Club in Concord.  You can read about it here.  Nine entrees, nine desserts.  I think I gained five pounds.  My fellow judges were terrific – former Panther Mike Rucker, Chef Jim Noble, Robert Krumbine from Center City Partners and MC Lou Petrozza, the wonderful local chef who made it all the way to second place on Hell's Kitchen.


Do we all look really full?  This picture was taken just after judging finished.  Thanks to Colleen Brannan from Branstorm PR for all her help and for inviting me to take part.  Colleen and I are supposed to have lunch this week.  After all that food, though, maybe we'll just make it for coffee!