Random n’at.

1. Thanks to my butler Mike for not giving up and thanks to the Mario Lemieux Foundation for working with him to make it happen, we now have a live tracker there to show our progress as we head on up toward $10,000 for Make Room for Kids.

Since he can apparently do anything, I’m going to ask Mike if that when that thermometer reaches the top, can he make it so a hologram of me pops out of your monitor a la Star Wars and gives you a hug.  Make it happen, Mike!

Also, a little email I received from reader Shelly:

Every day you write about the kids in Children’s it breaks me down to tears.  At 16 I was diagnosed with Hodgkins and spent months in Children’s for surgery and chemo. The absolute worst part of my stay was seeing the little guys battling diseases they couldn’t even pronounce let alone understand.

People don’t consider the fact that when children are sick, that doesn’t mean their parents get to stop showing up for work.  So on top of being sick, a lot of time these kids are alone all day as well.  It was easy for me- I was plenty old enough to do my own thing.  But I can remember walking my floor and seeing the little ones in bed with nothing but the TV to keep them company.

I can’t even imagine the difference this room will make to those kids.  Thank you so much for doing this.

Of course the new Children’s Hospital has lots of playrooms now, but this will be a fabulous place to play for the older children or will give them something to do while they are in bed.

Please consider a donation!

2.  Ed Bouchette, what are you smoking?  Srsly.

Note this teaser:


Then you click and read this:

Forget the apology Hines Ward delivered to his teammates yesterday. You should have heard his guarantee.

While he did not use the precise word uttered by a long-gone young defensive back two years ago before the Steelers played at New England, and while it occurred in a different context, Ward made some assurances about Sunday’s game against Oakland in Heinz Field.

He did not guarantee a victory; he guaranteed the season would be over if they lose.

“The playoffs officially begin for us this week. You lose, we’re pretty much out of it,” Ward stated. “We know what’s at stake. Our playoff season begins this weekend. This team knows if we lose we’re pretty much out of it.”

What a way to get people all aflutter.  “HINES WARD MADE A GUARANTEE?! ‘Scuse me while I go hang myself with a string of Terrible Towels.”

Then you click the article and he didn’t make ANY sort of guarantee in ANY sort of fashion.

[shakes cute little fist]

3.   LOVE THIS SHIRT!  “We’re not Manhattan.  We just built it.”


I wonder if I can get them to let me give one of those away?

(h/t Eileen)

4.  Best Lukey cartoon ever?  Hell yes.


Go check out some of the artist’s other works!

5.  Check it! Email from reader Bradley:

Screw New York: If you’re looking for Pittsburgh ‘ahtta tahn’, here’s a shot of my nephew, Army Ranger Captain Tom Rieck, on duty in a little section of the Burgh carved out of Iraq. He grew up in Lebo. This, I believe, is his second tour.


Pittsburgh Steelers St. in Iraq!

So much love.

6.  Last night I had a dream that I was stuck in a horror movie in which I was in a haunted house and the only way to get out was to basically successfully complete an obstacle course of horror, never knowing what evil lurked around every corner.  It eventually became like a reality show and the host?

I’m not making this up, you guys.

Luke Ravenstahl.

I’ll never sleep again.

I’m going to go call Scarehouse‘s Scott and recommend that next year, he incorporate some sort of Luke Ravenstahl Room of Horrors in the house in which as soon as you walk in the room, there’s a business-suited guy with a Luke Ravenstahl nametag and he takes all of the money in your wallet for the “Scare Tax.”


I’m here all week.  Send me money.  For the KIDS!


  1. Cassie
    December 3, 2009 1:16 pm

    It’s people like Shelly that remind us every day why you’re doing what you’re doing. As I’ve said before, I remember walking around 8N at the old Children’s and hearing the little ones talking to each other. What they would talk about wasn’t normal to me. It was “What’s your white count today?” So not right. I am so thankful that my kids are healthy, but who knows about tomorrow, right?

  2. Stacey
    December 3, 2009 1:24 pm

    You’re going to hit $10,000 in no time! Its so much more fun seeing the real time tracker update everytime I come to the site. Hope you reach the goal by the end of this week… what a fantastic thing to be able to announce during the Christmas season!

  3. Carpetbagger
    December 3, 2009 1:25 pm

    Living in Lawrenceville, the hospital sits up on the hill kind of looming over the neighborhood. It always breaks my heart when I’m walking my dog and another helicopter flies in. I’m sure that’s never good, but I always have to remind myself that it IS good that they have such a place to go when they need it. Now a good place can become an even better place. We have a little house church community here and will be passing the hat on Sunday.

    Great t-shirt. I’ve seen that as a sticker before, but never a shirt. Gots to git me one a them!

  4. bluzdude
    December 3, 2009 1:27 pm

    1. “Help me, Ginny-Wan Kenobi… you’re my only hope!”

    4. Where’s the lantern jaw?

    5. How come you never see any other teams with their symbols displayed in Iraq (or Mt Everest, or in fighter jets, etc?) My dream? To see a Burgher astronaut plant one, like a flag, on the moon.

  5. anietiquesn
    December 3, 2009 1:53 pm

    Ginny-Wan Kenobi………..oh my god, I love it!!!

    Proud to have helped you get closer to our goal!

  6. Emilie
    December 3, 2009 1:56 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE the real-time counter. I keep coming back to see where it is. I am so glad you are doing this Ginny and am glad that I was able to contribute something. I really hope Woy can make the hologram thing happen cuz that would be AWE-wait for it-SOME!

  7. Ashley
    December 3, 2009 2:27 pm

    Ginny, that thermometer is freaking awesome. We’re going to raise that $10k, and FAST! I wonder how many other cities can say its residents raised $10k for the kids in, what, like 6 days or something? I wasn’t born and bred here, I am a transplant from about two years ago, but I have NEVER loved a city like I do this one. I am so proud to have the honor of being a Pitt resident. I don’t plan on leaving anytime soon, that’s for damn sure.

  8. woy
    December 3, 2009 3:29 pm

    I know that getting a real-time tracker on donations might seem like it should be really simple (and I agree it should be), PayPal makes it exceedingly difficult to get access to that information. They (PayPal) are both a blessing and a curse.

    Huge thanks to the folks at the Mario Lemieux Foundation for working with us on this… they rock!

  9. butcher's dog
    December 3, 2009 3:38 pm

    What I’m hoping for is that the thermometer-thingy bursts at the top once the total is achieved and the more-than-what-we-asked-for total piles up around the base like a big pool. I’ll settle for that over a cyberhug.

    Ginny-Wan Kenobi…any chance you can play Jedi mind tricks on Mayor Lukey and the Dread Lord Zober? I’d pay to watch the film of that a few times. The Force is strong in this one!

  10. Pa-pop
    December 3, 2009 3:40 pm

    Make Room for Kids takes me back to a wonderfully warm time in Burgh lore when I, like thousands of others, would stand in line forever at this time of year at Gimbel’s, Horne’s and Kaufmann’s for the sheer delight of taking just a few seconds to contribute to Children’s Hospital and say hello to friends and family over the Very Large K. I know my parents in New Castle would listen all day just to hear my voice if I told them I might be there. Our reward was sharing in the cozy feeling that comes with the fellowship of joining in on such an endeavor. Plus there was that baked treat – my favorite was the Farkleberry Tart that Jack Bogut warned us not to get backwards.

    Back in the 70’s, the Children’s Hospital drive coincided with the winding down of yet another successful and exciting Steelers season. It was a wonderful time to be in the city. You were probably a li’l squirt when all this was taking place, Ginny.

    It’s a new day today. The department stores have changed or disappeared altogether. But the diseases and illnesses that afflict children are still with us. Fortunately, the generous spirit of Burghers is stronger than ever. This Christmas season, you, Ginny, have replaced the enjoyment of standing in line for Children’s Hospital with getting online. I – along with many sick children and their families I’m sure – am grateful.

    I hope this doesn’t end when the thermometer pops and your holographic visage tweaks my nose. It’s my Christmas wish that what you started through your compassion and energy becomes a wonderful Yuletide tradition we can all look forward to for a very, very long time.

  11. rickh
    December 3, 2009 4:02 pm

    Hey Ginny,

    You Guys are the best! You made it very easy to contribute and I’m sure you’ll reach the goal in no time.

    btw, You have a much softer touch than Matt Damon(Entourage reference).

    It’s for the kids!


  12. unsatisfied
    December 3, 2009 4:26 pm

    I believe that there’s a pittsburgh pirates street in siberia. but, it’s a dead end….

  13. Pitt Pygmy
    December 3, 2009 4:49 pm

    Love love LOVE the tshirt. Might have to get one for myself for Christmas.

    I’m totally donating (what my meager graduate student income can let me afford) as soon as I post this comment.

  14. steeler_tom
    December 3, 2009 8:21 pm

    I’ll take that hug! (Ok and maybe a margirita at your hubby’s place the next time I get back to the burgh)
    I am totally thrilled about the progress towards the goal. That rocks!
    Someone mentioned making this an annual event.
    Sounds like a great idea to me too!

  15. ScareHouse Scott
    December 3, 2009 9:57 pm

    Coming to ScareHouse in 2010: “Luke RavenSlaughter”. He appears repeatedly throughout the entire haunted house asking you for taxes, photo opportunities, and “long, slow, deep, soft, wet kisses that last three days.” NIGHTMARES!!!!

  16. David
    December 7, 2009 2:45 pm

    Thanks for your post about my Pittsburgh shirts! I would love to give you a few shirts to give away…and one for yourself too. I am having a batch printed right now. Send me an email and we can work out the details!

    David – American Workhorse,llc